Sunday, May 11, 2008

Busy days, birthdays, and Mother's Day

It has been a while since I have updated my blog. I don't have any excuse other than the fact that life is really busy these days! Field trips, end of school activities, and of course trying to figure out child care for the kids while I leave on a fun trip. I am headed to California to see my parents, then off to Texas to visit my sister. I will be doing shows while there (one at The Yarn Deli), so I have been working in the studio every spare moment I have.

It was also my youngest daughter and my birthday yesterday. She had a Princess Party, and it was a blast! She had friends from church and school come, and they were all thrilled to be princess. :) It was a busy, fun filled day, but I will admit to being tired at the end. I will try to get pictures up soon. I am glad that at this point in her life, she is happy to have our birthdays on the same day. I think I am the lucky one though, I got her for a birthday present. It doesn't get much better than that!I

Today at church, we celebrated Mother's. We were treated to wonderful talks, and my favorites were from the youth of the ward. We also enjoyed music by the Primary and Young Women. During Relief Society, all the ladies were treated to chocolate dipped strawberries and cake. We had a great time visiting with each other. My favorite part of the day was listening to all the kids sing, "I Often Go Walking." As a child this was one of my favorite Primary songs and I was teary eyed today, listening and watching my own kids sing the same song that I remember singing to my Mom. It is amazing how life can come full circle.

I had a few minutes to edit a few pictures, but loved the way this one came out. Ally and I get our picture taken together every year as birthday girls, this years came out really cute! I love her "toothy" smile. :)

Friday, April 11, 2008

What are the different ways you diversify your business?

This is the topic of the week at Flaming Hot. Most of us sell our beads and jewelry online, however that isn't always enough. I have a wholesale Children's line of jewelry that doesn't include lampworking at all, but it is what lead me to start lampworking in the first place, so I am forever grateful to that line. I also have a wholesale line of knitting markers that is a lot of fun as well. I also look forward to the selling at different shows in my area. I love getting to meet my customers face to face and enjoy the reactions of them as they say, "You make the beads?" I always carry some glass and examples of beads in the stages of making a bead so that I have a tangible example of how I create the beads. This helps them understand the process of lampworking better and they can appreciate and understand why my items are more expensive than a lot of the other jewelry at the shows. My other favorite way of selling is to do home shows. It is a win win situation for all involved. The hostess earns a pair of free earrings, a discount on her purchases, as well as earning free money based on the sales at her party. Her friends get to come and visit, shop, and snack on good food. I get out of the house, and once again, get to meet my customers face to face, and create new friends. I always have a wonderful time at these parties. In the end, the best way to diversify my business is to keep an open mind, to look for new and different ways to market my products. I only wish I had enough time to implement all of my ideas. Time does get short in a house with 4 kids after all!

Wednesday, April 9, 2008

Allison's first beads!

Yesterday Allison got to make her first beads! Needless to say, Mom held her hands over Allison's. She had a lot of help, and was never without my hands on hers at all near the torch. She is not ready for that, but had a fantastic time! She first made the bead on the left, then the right, and then asked if she could make a froggy bead. It took me almost 4 1/2 years to work up to that, and here she is on her first day, wanting to try anything! I should be more like her in that way, not being afraid to explore new ideas and techniques. Anyways, I told her that if she made the base bead, that Mom would put a frog on it for her. She was delighted and  quickly picked out her colors. After I made the frog and put it in the kiln, she went inside for about 5 minutes. She than came out and declared," I think the beads are done now, can we get them out?" LOL! She wasn't thrilled when I told her they wouldn't be ready for her to see until the morning.  When she woke up this morning, the first words out of her mouth were, "Can we get my frog out of the kiln now?" She was so excited when I answered yes!  Here she is with the beads right out of the kiln, a close up of her beads, and then her with her beads and frog all dressed up on a necklace. It was so much fun to see her excitement. She wants to make more beads today, I may have created a monster!




Monday, April 7, 2008

Back to reality

Reality came at me early this morning as I woke up and realized that Tyler’s alarm clock hadn’t gone off for school, so I scrambled quickly out of bed, woke him up, and wished for a few more days of spring break. After a glorious week of sleeping in,  no one was ready to go back to school today.


The kids had a good spring break filled with friends, movies, and of course, they played a lot of Wii. It would have been the perfect week if I hadn’t thrown my back out on Wednesday. Chris was sweet and stayed home with me so he could drive me to the doctor’s as there was no way I could drive. They loaded me up on muscle relaxers and pain killers that knocked me out each day. I don’t remember the last time I slept so much. I was finally able to start moving around well on Sat. and I snuck in some “therapy” otherwise known as torch time. I had to make more frogs, I just can’t seem to stop making them! Here are some of the new ones.


Frog pendants


One great thing about my back going out was that I was able to get some reading in. I read the last book in the Tally Whyte series, "The Bone Man." I loved it! If you haven't read the series by Vicki Stiefel, you should check them out. I sure hope there are more of these books coming soon as I want to know more about Tally and where her life takes her.

Tuesday, April 1, 2008

LEST Featured Artist

My friend, and fellow lampworking artist,  Nicole Valentine is featuring a different artist from the Etsy street team LEST on her blog. This month I was chosen as the featured artist.You can read the post here. I think this is a great idea and it perfectly timed as LEST is having a Welcome Sale that starts today and runs until April 7th, be sure to check out all the fantastic artists who are participating!

Sunday, March 30, 2008

Spring Break

My kids just started their Spring Break. I have to laugh about it because this is a picture of the weather Friday afternoon as "Spring Break" began. Not looking like spring yet here, although it is warmer today.
View from backyard

Saturday, March 29, 2008

Friends, Flowers, and Frogs!

What a wonderful day today has been. I was able to attend a baby shower for a friend today from my old ward. It was great to see her and other friends that I don't get to see as often as I would like. She is having a little girl after 2 boys, so as you can imagine everything was pink and purple. This little girl is going to be a girly girl one way or the other!

On the way home from the baby shower, I stopped at a store and picked up a bunch of Fuchsia's to plant in my hanging baskets in the front yard. I stood in line for about 15 minutes in the cold waiting to get them "planted" for me in my pots before I realized that I was freezing standing there in short sleeves in the drizzling rain, and that I could just plant them later at home. I hope that I don't kill these flowers as I tend to have a black thumb.

When I got home, I was anxious to get my new beads out of the kiln. The other day I asked some friends on LampworkEtc. what I should make, and one of them told me to try frogs. Well, I never have tried them before, so after spending an hour or 2 searching for my Passing the Flame book that had a tutorial in it, I went out and made some. I made 11 frogs, 9 made it into the kiln, and 2 lost toes the next day! LOL! So, I had to make more yesterday, and practice is helping. This time the frogs bodies are larger than their feet, and all of their toes and fingers are still on! Here are yesterday's frogs, fresh from the kiln. These little guys are so much fun to make, so thank you Josie for giving me that push I needed to try them!
2nd Day Frogs

Wednesday, March 26, 2008

A baby?

My sister just called with the best news! She just received a call from her adoption agency with the news that we have all been praying for. They may have a baby! The birth Mom is having the baby today and is looking at their profile. We are all just so excited and praying that this is the child they have been waiting for. When I told Allison and Travis, Allison asked," Is the baby in her tummy or the other way?" We have been trying to explain adoption to her and I think she understands. Now we are all on pins and needles as we anxiously await more information. Kim, if you are reading this, don't wear out a path in your carpet!

UPDATE:

Well, my sister just heard that they weren't chosen for this baby. It is breaking my heart for them. I have so much admiration for my sister though. This is what she said in an email: "We just found out that we weren't picked.  We have a strong belief that the right baby will come to us at the right time.  Guess this one wasn't ours."  My little sister is so strong, and I am so proud of her. She is going to be an incredible Mother when the right baby arrives.

Monday, March 24, 2008

Easter

My Mom and I were talking the other day about how there are certain orders to things in life. For instance, when Easter is. It is suppossed to be the arrival of spring, General Conference, and then Easter. Sometimes Easter and Conference end up on the same Sunday, and that is great. However, Easter coming before Conference? The kids even felt that Easter came way too early this year. That still didn't stop them from making sure their baskets were ready to be filled by the Easter Bunny though. When the kids all woke up, they were happy to see what had been brought for them. However we weren't happy to find out that Travis had been awake off and on since 3 a.m. feeling extremely sick and Tyler was feeling worse as well. As a result we had to call and "uninvite" our friends, the Welsh's from coming over for dinner. It still worked out as we sent them dinner and they sent us dessert. We were just unable to enjoy the meal together.
Kids Easter morning 2008

Travis, Allison, Daylyn, & Tyler


Chris and the girls went to church, and I found myself wishing I could be in Utah with my brother John and his family as their new son Chase was being blessed today in church. I heard it was a great day for them. I can't wait to get to hold little Chase myself. He was in Grandma's arms when I talked with her yesterday.

Here is the family after Chase's blessing:

Dad, Mom, Sharley, John, Kelsie, and Chase.

and a close up of little Chase...



As they day came to a close, we gathered the family together to enjoy a gift brought to me by my visiting teacher. It was a basket containing 12 numbered Easter Eggs. As we opened each egg, there was a small item inside along with a scripture, telling the story of Christ's Resurrection. As we each took turns opening and reading an egg, I was so thankful that my children really do understand the reason we celebrate Easter and that it finally felt like Easter.

Saturday, March 22, 2008

Hearts, flowers and more

I had so much fun at the torch yesterday! I made hearts with tiny rosebuds, raised florals, and even played with a little bit of Kronos (a super silver saturated glass color) from Double Helix Glass I love their glass! Today I will get all of these wrapped up into stitch markers for The Yarn Deli. They have such a great store. My Mom introduced them to me a few years ago. I don't knit, but love visiting their store.

 



Friday's beads

Thursday, March 20, 2008

Spring has arrived or has it?

I woke up this morning to snow falling. Yes, snow. It is suppossed to be spring, but alas no one seems to have told Mother Nature. The kids were thrilled of course, and I am just grateful it isn't sticking. It is going to be a cold day here for sure. Soon spring will actually arrive and bring with her color and warmth. Until then, we are going to continue to bundle up, drink hot chocolate and wish for spring to arrive. I am looking forward to those warmer days to arrive so I will no longer freeze in the studio. I just peeked out there and the kiln is at 46 degrees! I think I will go out and make make floral beads today so even though there are no flowers blooming yet in my garden, soon my kiln will be full of them!

 

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