Sunday, December 25, 2011

It's Time!

It's been a few years since I've been ready for Christmas. In years past I was always sad living so far away from my family. I missed the opening of presents and Christmas dinners.

My wise daughter who is always filled the Christmas spirit told me we needed to start our own traditions. She told me we needed to make our own joy and happy memories. For years I did not decorated. Last year my husband said "enough" and we went shopping for Christmas decorations and a tree. We made a night of setting it up and decorating together.

This year the traditions have continued. Art and I decorated together. I shopped for Christmas PJ's for the grand children and made hand presents. I cooked and baked special treats and spent Christmas eve delivering them to my friends.

My heart was filled with joy!

Along with being a New Orleans tradition Mr. Bingle has now become a collection. Two more were added to the tree this year.

This is the poem that comes printed on a card with every Mr. Bingle.

When Santa left his shop one day he found a snowman near his sleigh. "you'll be my helper now." he said, and tapped the little fellow's head.

The snowman found that he could talk. "Look Santa I can even walk!" And then he gave a little sigh..."oh how I wish I could fly!"

So Santa gave him holly wings then looking through his Christmas things, found ornaments the very size to make a pair of shining eyes.

Than Santa said, "You need a hat; an ice cones's just right for that. And keep this candy cane with you; you'll see what magic it can do!"

The snowman laughed and sang a jingle, so Santa named him Mr. Bingle®" That's how it happened. Now he's here for us to enjoy throughout the year!

The story about how Mr. Bingle originated can be found on Wikpedia

Wishing you peace and happiness and a Happy New Year!

Saturday, November 19, 2011

Queen Ann

Like tiny grains of sand flowing through my hands so did these tiny delicas as I picked up 3 beads and through the next 3. I forgot how muchI enjoy the rhythm and flow of 3-drop peyote.

I was smitten with MaryLou's Queen Ann's lace pattern. I had them both pinned on my board on Pinterest.

I am glad I took the time to read through the instructions it was like beading with a friend. There were options, choices to make. The graph was broken down into 3 parts which made it easy to follow. Included was a word chart. There was also a paragraph about finishing touches. The closure on your bracelet is very important whether you use a button or bead a toggle. This is the part that dresses up your bead work and adds that special touch. I chose a vintage button from my collection. It reminds me of the times I spent traveling and beading with my friends. It's the perfect match to go with my Janine King bag.

Wednesday, November 09, 2011

Bead Table Wednesday

One German and one Japanese crochet hook, both were put to the test this week on my bead table. I've been crocheting with the German crochet hook for years. One day it just disappeared. My magic crochet was missing. Would the new Tulip Crochet hook from Japan be able to compete with it's German counterpart? Would the hook slide from loop to loop like the blades of skates on ice?

There were no nashing of hooks. Although they felt different in my hand. Both hooks were able to keep up with the rhythm of slipping a bead and passing through the hook. I have finished 60 inches of my third Urban Stripes rope. Tonight I will join it together.

Who won, The German hook or the Japanese hook? They both did, but the German hook will always be my favorite. It's just holds the magic.

Visit BTW and see who has what on their bead table.

Monday, October 31, 2011


My girls really know how to do Halloween. Martha Stewart has nothing on them. Amiee's front yard was filled with ghoulish things. The neighborhood block party was huge success! Heather planned a surprise birthday for Amiee before the Halloween fun began.

My daughter in-law Jennifer is a rock star with her creations and costuming. Star Wars costumes are her forte. This year she created Mumford a Tauntaun. She is well traveled making an appearance at a Star Wars convention, hanging out a Tiger's game in Detroit and helping out with the Tricks and Treats. If you would like see more of Mumford's adventures she has her own page on Facebook

Costumes for the family included a Twi'lek, Garrus, Luke Skywalker, a zombie and a cat from Dr. Who.

I hope your Halloween was spooky fun and full of treats!

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Urban Stripes E-Book

I've always been one to color within my favorite color palette. I am drawn to the matte finishes with a hit of metallic accents. Judith's Urban Stipes project fit that criteria letting me choose my colors.

You can see examples of different color combinations for the Urban Stripes by the members of the original on-line group who participated in the project here

Urban Stripes by Judith Giffin is now available as an e-book at

I am grateful and excited to have my finished Urban Stripe necklace displayed in the gallery along with the color numbers for this project.

In the book, you will find:
º Urban color inspiration
º Design and construction tips
º 3 necklace & 1 bracelet project
º 16 length adjustable pattern sections
º 48 pattern repeats
º Adding in thread and invisible closure
º Blank graph paper to copy and use

This book has it all. What are you waiting? Get out there and pick your color combination and let the fun begin.

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

This is my sister Rosanne. We look a like don't we.

We were in a bead store shopping and a woman looked at us and asked "So which one of you did your Mom like better?" We both laughed at the same time and said neither! We aren't twins!

This my younger sister Susie and her pup Zoey.

I am having family withdrawals. My two week visit wasn't long enough.

I think we all favor my Mom. Rosanne and Mom have birthdays two day apart. I am so glad we were able to celebrate together. I hope I look as good as my Mom does when I turn 78!

Tuesday, October 04, 2011

Inspired by Nature

My trip home this month included a whirlwind of travels with my daughter Heather Powers. There was a bead retreat inspired by nature, along with a book signing and trunk show. In my many years of traveling to bead shows, bead cruises and bead retreats I learned skills that I can incorporated into my beadwork. Heather's taught us how to capture the beauty of nature with our cameras and incorporate them into our jewelry designs.

My only regret is that I did not have a good camera to take pictures with. With My trusty iPod I did get some great inspirational pictures.

There was a trip to the farmer's market.

I had the best time sharing this adventure with Heather and Rosanne.

There are more pictures and stories to tell but they will have to wait. In the mean time treat yourself to Heather's book Inspired by Nature. You won't be disappointed.

Monday, September 12, 2011

Urban Stripes

We had so much with the first Urban string along. I love the pop of color in the last section. it's called Silver Perm. Galv. Matte. It has such a nice finish.

While waiting for the last section, Judith challenged us to create a bracelet combining parts from the different sections.

I never quite master the invisible join. I used copper discs to give the bracelet an Urban Chic feel.

The first round of the Urban sting along is complete. We had so much fun that we asked Judith if she would consider doing a second one. I'm pretty sure there was begging and pleading involved!

Stay tuned for part 2. Section one is complete and section two is strung. There has been a lot of crocheting going on!

To see other color combinations and completed ropes stop by and visit Judith's blog

Thursday, September 08, 2011

Birthdays and Hurricanes

I've been having a hard time communicating with my blog. It has to do with hurricane season and my birthday. This year I decided my birthday was going to be different. In 2005 hurricane Katrina was my 50th birthday present. I was determined not to celebrate my day reliving this event that changed my life and so many others. I picked the weekend before to have a party. I invited my friends over for cake and ice cream. I had big plans to capture this day with photos. I ordered a white almond wedding birthday cake with butter creme frosting from Heydel's bakery. We met at Quarter View for dinner. I love the decor. The walls are painted with a muriel of the French Quarter. It has a good atmosphere and the Red Fish was excellent.

Phil was telling a joke when I snapped this shot.
We were having so much fun I forgot to take any more pictures!

You will have to take my word that the cake beautiful.
I treated myself and bought the camera connection gadget for my iPad. I snapped this photo with my camera and used the device to upload it. A quick fix with an app and there you go a picture of my birthday present from my friends Sally and Carol. I love flamingos. They found the perfect gift that really made my birthday special. I am so grateful to be blessed with friends. They are the best of all gifts.

Thanks for stopping by!

Tuesday, August 09, 2011

Urban Inspiration

I hear the train a comin'; it's rollin' 'round the bend,
And I ain't seen the sunshine since I don't know when.

"Folsom Prison Blues" Song by Johnny Cash

And I'd let that lonesome whistle blow my blues away.

photo by

This picture is the inspiration for my Urban stripes color selection. Section three is almost compete and section four should be string before the night is over.

To see other Urban inspired crocheted ropes and color combinations visit Judith's blog.

Saturday, August 06, 2011

Urban Stripes

Judith of Beadline Studio started a project called Urban stripes. Thirty three people signed up to join in the experiment. Urban graffiti was the inspiration for our color choices. In my mind's eye I vividly remember sitting at the railroad tracks seeing a black tanker car with these colors painted on the side.

Picture editing: Photostudio app using effect 62 neon lights.

It can be tricky at times stringing a color chart following letters. Picking up the wrong color seed bead to match the letter can really be frustrating once you start crocheting. One mistake and it will throw the whole pattern off. My solution to the problem was using the backside of a business card and double sided sticky tape.

Section one is competed. Section two has been strung with just a few beads left to crochet. I will be posting more pictures of my progress as each section is completed.

Wednesday, August 03, 2011

Bead Table Wednesday


This is just what I needed to get back into a creative mode. My beadwork has been hiding in a box for over a month. This week I unpacked my favorite pieces and carefully placed them on my beadboards. Now when I sit at my table to bead I am inspired by the colors, textures, different shapes and sizes of the beads I use to create with. What are those boards made out of? They are frames use to make Grandfather clocks. They didn't pass inspection at the factory and were discarded. I was lucky enough to know someone who worked there many years ago. Rosanne and I figured out a way to use them in our booth when we did shows. I miss those days!

Thanks for stopping by.

Click on the BTW photo to see more Bead Table Wednesday pictures.

Sunday, July 31, 2011

The Big Easy

In 1987 The Big Easy was a movie filmed on location in New Orleans. It starred Dennis Quaid, Ellen Barkin, John Goodman, and Ned Beatty. The movie plot is about police corruption, love and murder. Being a small town girl moving to the Big Easy wasn't easy. Shortly after our move I came across an ad in the paper for a warehouse sale from the movie set of The Big Easy. Looking for a way to keep myself entertained at the time, I decided to check it out.

I loved to tell the tale of how I acquired my dining room chairs from the movie set. They had a history. After 14 years, these chairs have found a new home. This weekend a new dining room table and chairs arrived. I shouted out a double Hoot! Hoot! on Facebook. I was so excited.

The new table is dark rich heavy wood with bar stool heigh chairs. Some day soon I am going to crochet a new doily for the center of the table. The one I am using now I made 25+ years ago when my children were young.

You can catch both the move and the TV series "The Big Easy" on Netflix

Sunday, July 10, 2011

Friends and the City

Seems I've been on the run for the last 3 weeks with packing and the move. When my friend Sharon called and said she would be in town I jumped on the chance to meet her in the city. We headed to the French Market where enjoyed watching an artist paint letters and names. A poet read us a poem. Sharon found a purse that was just right for a night on the town.

We crossed the street and headed to The Artist Market and Beadshop Where Jan greeted us with a sweet smile and a warm welcome.

I love New Orleans art.

For years Sharon has heard me talk about Mother's Restaurant. How could not stop there for lunch! The afternoon thunderstorms rolled in which prolonged our stay. Bread Pudding kept us entertained as we waited for them to pass. Our next stop, the Carrolton cemetery.

I love when friends come to town and I get to spend time with them. Thanks Sharon! I had a great day.

Friday, July 08, 2011

Home Sweet Home

It's been a long 2 1/2 weeks of packing and moving. We are finally settle in. The drapes are up and the pictures are hung. There is just one box to unpack in the beadroom. I'm pretty sure I remember where I put everything! So many details to attend to before we are truly settled in. Tomorrow we will be up and running early in the morning to do a change of address at the OMV.

We couldn't of done this without help from our friends Chuck and Tammye. Chuck staged the move and Tammye made sure we had dinner. Tammye helped unpack the kitchen and we put things away. She said once that is done the rest falls into place and she was so right.

We are so happy in our new place. Home Sweet, safe, secure and settled in.

Tuesday, June 28, 2011


"Paradise" or "Life in a Box" was my choice as a title for this post. In two days we are moving to a new apartment complex. Our life is full of boxes waiting for the move. We are hopeful the new location will bring us back to paradise.

This is the last thing I made before packing most of my beads. The Queen of Paradise in teal. I have been going though serious bead withdrawals wanting to bead with things that won't see the light of day until the end of this weekend.

Hopefully I've managed the transfer of lights, cable and Internet so there won't be any down time and the move will go without a hitch.

Thursday, June 16, 2011


Because it's Hurricane season and
I survived Katrina.

She was my 50th birthday present and because
We are moving in two weeks.

I have been going through years of magazines.
Not just any Magazines but years of Bead & Button and Beadwork.

Knowing that I can replace those issues with a DVD collection. Makes this task easier and will free up a lot of space in my new beadroom.

Clink on the picture to go to the Interweave website to order a DVD collection. I like the idea of having a years worth of issues at the touch of my iPad.

Pulling out box after box of magazines has me wondering. Am I a pack rat or a hoarder?

Do you save every issue of your favorite magazines?

Saturday, June 11, 2011

Buttons and Buttons

My Grandma had a button box. Actually it was a tin can. It was one our favorite things to play with when we went to visit on a Sunday afternoon. Over the last 22 years I have become a collector of things. Those things being pressed glass, seed beads and buttons. I am not an organized collector of these things, until this week. I have been going through every box and container and putting things that belong together in their own boxes or containers.

My buttons are now in their own special tin. I have been inspired to incorporate some of these buttons into new pieces of beadwork. I just have to remember where I put everything when I am done sorting and things are put away.

Are you an organized collector of things?