Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Merry Christmas...

From our family to yours, wherever you are, we wish you a VERY Merry Christmas and pray that the true meaning of the season comes shining through! Happy Birthday Jesus!!!


MUCH love,
Emily (Gabe and the Little Women too!)

PS: This was our first attempt and I thought you may enjoy seeing this as well :)

Monday, December 22, 2008


This is a picture that I took just a bit ago after realizing that during the corse of 1 week I created and mailed/delivered (with the exception of 2 pieces) no less than 28 pieces of jewelry (some quite complex)... a record for me I think. I was BUSY and wondered a few times whether I was gonna finish things on time or not, but overall, it really made me excited for the day when my kids are in school and I can have a real "work week" (my desktop widget countdown clock tells me there are only 1346 more days till Sophie starts Kindergarten ) :)
Here is a shot of some of the stuff (the stuff to be mailed out). I hope everyone loves them!!!
Also, I am smiling in the first photo, despite the temperature being 4 degrees and the snowfall count for December alone creeping upwards of 21 inches... this would be a shot out our front and back doors...

Well, now I'm off to finish (HOPEFULLY) my Christmas shopping and get me some COFFEE!!!!!


Monday, December 15, 2008

My Hubby, my HERO...

Someday I'll tell you the whole story of how my sweetie and I met, but for now, I'll skip most of that and get right to the part where he EVER so quickly (and heroically), swooped in and fixed one of my previously unsalvageable torch tips, and extended it's life at LEAST long enough for me to get some pieces finished before the new tips arrive. It is really kind of neat because though we've each done different things at different points, as far as work is concerned, ultimately we do the very same thing - just on large and small scales. I am a silversmith, working on a small scale (well, large for jewelry, small compared to what Gabe does), and he is a welder extraordinaire. MIG, TIG, Stick, pipe welding, pressure vessels, food grade, you name it - he can do it. Needless to say, this came in VERY handy when I started in with metalwork. My torch set up arrived and I really didn't have much of a clue about the ins and outs of my particular "rig" but he took one look at it and instantly knew EVERYTHING about it, even though it's about 1/10th the size of the setup he's used to. :)

Pics of us using our respectives torches...
OK - I'm gonna go - I've hired a sitter and I fully intend on squeezing every last drop of productivity I can out of the time she'll be here to entertain my little women.


Sunday, December 14, 2008

Tis the season...

It is just shy of 2 weeks before Christmas and the weather seems to be just about par for the season. I can remember years when we didn't get any snow till after the first of the year, and one year where trick-or-treating was cancelled due to an ice storm leaving everything coated with what looked like half inch thick glass. That's the midwest for ya though I suppose.
I thought today was supposed to be decent but apparently, I was wrong. When we work up this morning the temp was right around 15 degrees, but this is a shot of the temperature gauge in my car on our way home from church this afternoon...

Here's a shot I took (QUICKLY) out my front door just a bit ago...
It doesn't look too terrible but what the camera didn't pick up is all the snow blowing and swirling through the air.

Current temp: -2 degrees
Overnight predicted low: -19 degrees


Going to bed and hoping my torch tips will have arrived by tomorrow... and if they have arrived, hopefully I'll be able to get out to go pick them up...

Going to grab an extra blanket,

Saturday, December 13, 2008

Shake shake shake ya booty...

This is my first attempt at uploading a video for my blog and as this one took place at my parents house last night, I thought it would be an excellent first choice. Sweet Sophie just can't keep from dancin' whenever there's music playin'. (She didn't know she was being filmed) :)


Thursday, December 11, 2008

"Peek at my Pad" Thursday #13"...

Well, my plan this week was to show you a picture of our Christmas tree. Change of plans. The tree itself is up but still awaiting decorations and an extension cord (our first year with one of those new-fangled pre-lit trees) so it wouldn't make for a very interesting photo :)

Soooo... instead, I'm gonna show you a shot from Isabel's room. Please forgive the poor photo quality as this pic was taken a few years ago right after I finished painting, and we had an ENORMOUS, clunky, digital camera with VERY minimal pixel capabilities. :) I'll take some better pics soon... this will just serve as a teaser :)

Wednesday, December 10, 2008


My 4 year old niece always pluralizes everything... if you're gonna dance, it's "dancin's", mini golf, "golfin's" and one of my favorites, "sewin's" (naturally the name for the act of playing with those big cards with pictures and corresponding holes and you use big shoelaces to sew with). Not sure if snowing actually qualifies to be pluralized but if it's good enough for my niece, it's good enough for me. :)

And snow it has... the first real whopper of the year, complete with a nice thick sheet of frozen rain underneath and a 2 hour late start for school yesterday morning. I'm not quite sure how I feel about it all. I really think I would miss snow if I lived somewhere where we never got any, but I'm also not crazy about the prospect of dealing with the white stuff till April. Oh well - time to break out the snow boots and crank the space heaters up full blast.

On a slightly more frustrating note, the last of my decent soldering torch tips totally crapped out on me yesterday, RIGHT in the middle of my already more hectic work day (the in-laws weren't able to make it in to watch the kiddos due to the terrible road conditions so it was a "work as I got the chance" day) prompting an emergency (and I'm sure slightly panicked sounding) call to my local welding supply store.

Me: (a little frantic) "Um ya, I'm gonna need to order some replacement tips for my oxygen/acetylene setup."

Clerk: "ok, what type of set up is it?"

Me: "Smith. I think it's the smallest set you offer"

Clerk: "Oh ya. What tips do you need?"

Me: "#4 and #5"

Clerk: "Ok, those are like about 3 to 4 inches long right?"

Me: "Um NO... more like ONE inch... it's the SMALLEST set you offer - for SOLDERING, NOT welding..."

Clerk: "Oh... um... lemme check..."

Me: (in my head - AW CRAP!)

Clerk: "Ma'am?"

Me: (in my head again - WHAT the HECK is up with this MA'AM business??? Since when did "Miss" turn into "MA'AM"???)

Me: "Yes?"

Clerk: "Ya, I can order those"

Me: "...ok... so can I do that now over the phone???"

Clerk: "ya."

Me: "alright... then would you please order them?"

Clerk: "Yep. Name and number?"

Me: (give him my info) "Just out of curiosity, how long will it take for them to come in?"

Clerk: "I'd guess about 3 to 4 days, give or take"

Me: (GIVE or TAKE???) "Um, ok, thanks."


They WILL arrive before next Tuesday, they WILL arrive before next Tuesday...

...and to end on a happy note - these are the pieces I managed to finish before the solder tips' demise...

An oxidized agate necklace...
Druzy ring set...
Moukaite necklace...Happily,

Monday, December 8, 2008

Merry Christmas to me...

I have had my trusty little green ipod nano for about 2 years now and it has never done me wrong. Passing the time while in Dr's waiting rooms, making dish washing not quite so painful, providing me with tunes while I smith my silver, etc. Though I'm not quite as much of a "music connoisseur" as my brother Chris is (who could possibly have over 3000 songs worthy of loading onto their ipod???), I was well on my way to filling up my 4G of space (about 700 songs) but, when our church handed out MP3 versions of the New Testament and the entire bible for kids, that pretty well put me over the top. I had set aside a bit of money to buy myself something new and shiny and this pretty well fits the bill (and apparently this one can hold 33,000 songs... I didn't even know that many songs existed. :)Happily,

Saturday, December 6, 2008

Aftermath of a muffin...

Somehow the picture just didn't capture the full effect of the mess that was left in the littlest woman's chair after I had given her a banana-nut muffin for breakfast. The little pile you see on the corner of the table is composed of the 3 larger walnuts she found inside the muffin that she apparently found unsatisfactory. Who would have guessed that ONE 2 year old with ONE muffin could cause such a mess?!!??? ("Oh! Oh! ME! I WOULD!!!" *she says as she flails her right arm around in the air, supporting it with her left hand as if she's waiting for someone to call on her*) It really is true. The other day I had just cleaned up the basement while Isabel and Sophie were content watching a bit of "Elmo's World". I went upstairs to put some laundry away and by the time I returned (it couldn't have even been a full 5 minutes) the basement was back to the way it looked before I had straightened up. I stopped in my tracks and asked "WHAT HAPPENED???" and Isabel (who hadn't moved from her original spot) just pointed at Sophie without saying a word. I looked over at Sophie who was squatting down next to the toy basket, who, upon seeing me there, stood up and came over to me saying "hi mommy! hi mommy!" over and over again. Such is life with small children.

This photo, though perhaps a little gross, was taken out of my own curiosity to see, once all the crumbs were swept up in one place, just how much of that muffin had been consumed, and how much ended up all over the kitchen... I'd say she ate a good 2/3 of it. :)
Also, I wanted so share a new piece of jewelry with you that I feel somehow ties in with this post. I'm toying with the idea of starting sort of a "quote of the week" series (or as often as I'm able to get to it) and this is the first "installment". There's just something special about having a wearable piece of inspiration, something tangible to look at that will remind you of a thought or idea that you resonate with. This particular piece belongs to the lovely Miss Vita but rest assured there will be more to come...Happily,

Thursday, December 4, 2008

"Peek at my Pad" Thursday #12"...

This week, I thought I'd give you a peek into the cupboard where I keep all my dishes. I have parts of several different sets but over time my goal is to have given some of them away and simultaneously acquired several other random pieces so that I will end up with a full set of dishes where NOTHING matches (but all "coordinate") ...it's quite an exciting concept really :)

You will also see down in the bottom right corner that I stash a tiny bottle of baby lotion to be used for my post-dish-washing hands.

October through March + lack of a dishwasher = dry, itchy, crackly, and sad little hands. I hate math.

It is currently 14 degrees outside so if it's chilly wherever you are, grab a blanket, make yourself some tea (my tea of choice for the time being is Cranberry Pomegranate green) and have a lovely Thursday!!!


Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Jewelry aboundeth...

Well, maybe not "ABOUNDETH" but I sure did get get a few things done yesterday (Tuesday = shut myself in my workshop and work all day, uninterrupted - for the most part - thanks to the graciousness of my inlaws who come and take care of my kids for the day)... and now, for a little show-and-tell...

This is a ring I made with some sort of deep purple "rough polished" stone that I then added a thin coat of wax to in order to let the deep purple shine though. This was also a unique piece as it is the first for which I used 2 different types of bezel on one stone...

A bracelet made with large red jasper and tiny turquoise...

This piece will not be available for sale as it is a gift for my husband's grandmother for Christmas (shhh... nobody tell!) I think I had mentioned this in an older post at one point but she and her hubby were rock hounds back in the day and poppy jasper is one of her favorites. My very good friend and lapidary gave me this stone, insisting I use it to make her something nice, so I made her this (I could NEVER turn down a gorgeous stone - even if I'm not allowed to keep it for myself) :) I hope she likes it!

I think this could quite possibly be one of my very most favorite pieces I've made to date. It is a Texas Agate and really doesn't need much in the way of embellishment. It is translucent with such lovely inclusions that I knew a window at the back would be necessary. You can see a bit of light peeking through in this shot...

I made a few other things but some are awaiting chains and others, awaiting their photo session. Also, I've go a few new stones headed my way that I am RIDICULOUSLY excited about, you have no idea... well, some of you may know... :)


Tuesday, December 2, 2008

"Peek at my Pad" Thursday #11"... LATE...

Ok, so in my defense, last Thursday was Thanksgiving and I was kind of busy for most of the day, you know, with the pondering of the things one is thankful for and the coinciding stuffing of one's face with pie... so I neglected my "peek at my pad" post. I don't want to fall behind though, so, it looks like this week will include 2 "peeks"...In the spirit of thankfulness, this is a picture of a cluster of photographs on the wall in my entry-way. I LOVE framing photographs and seeing the smiling (or crying or just plain goofy, depending on the shot) faces of my family and friends. Surrounding myself with the images of the people I love most in the entire world is a very important thing to me. These particular images are as follows...

Black frame: A picture of my little women taken when Sophie was about 6 months old. I remember thinking She (Sophie) looked so big in that picture... now remembering her that way is just a memory...

The Red frame on the right: My father in law's High School senior picture. His glasses and the way his hair is fixed reminds me so much of a movie star from back in the day. Quite the handsome fellow, or maybe "dapper" is more the word?

The Red frame on the bottom: Our First Christmas photo taken after Sophie was born (she would have been only about a month old). I have several other "versions" of this photo up around the house (past Christmas family photos) and writing about this is making me curious to see them all together in one place.. hmmm... perhaps a future blog post???...

I love my family and I love all of you. :)


Monday, December 1, 2008

Oy vay...

...I think I gained 6 pounds over the course of 2 days... and I still have 2/3 of a pumpkin pie (with accompanying tub of cool-whip) and 5lbs worth of left-over mashed potatoes in my fridge...