Monday, August 31, 2009

Off and running...

As I alluded to last night with my "shopping frantically for school supplies" comment, The day has finally come. The girls were absolutely VIBRATING with excitement and literally bouncing all over the place Sunday night as it was the eve of their first day of school for this year.

Lillie to be in the 2nd grade, and Isabel, Kindergarden.

All I have to do is not have another baby until Sophie starts school and I'll be able to keep my "more kids in school than at home" streak going. I'll be running the numbers on that immediately after this posts...

A quick pic before hopping in the car...

The obligatory "shot outside the school doors on the first day of school" picture...
there was already a bit of Oh man mom, SERIOUSLY??? face.

I didn't accomplish as much as I would have liked, but I did spend a little extra time savoring the silence with my orange mug full of cranberry pomegranate green tea. Gabe had graciously offered to stay home until I returned from taking the girls to school so I wouldn't have to wake Sophie to take her with me... she was still snoozing when I returned and ended up sleeping till nearly 10:00am. Thank you God for children who sleep in.

The day went off without a hitch and even though I did have Sophie here at home with me, for some reason, I felt oddly free and full - if not with actual productivity, then at least with the prospect of it.

Here's to the next 8.5 months of gettin' stuff done. May you be able to leap large piles of laundry in a single bound as I know I will be.


PS Happy "day that Starbucks brings back the Pumpkin Spice Latte for the season" day!!!

Home free...

...well, not completely free, but the "home" part is accurate.

We got back Sunday afternoon from our "end of summer vacation extravaganza" complete with two very different, yet equally fun destinations, however, I'm not gonna lie and say I don't have mixed feelings about it all...

It was SO good to get away for an entire week, with Mr. G along to boot. VERY good.

Not so good that we ended up having to cut our "cabin" portion of the trip shorter than we would have liked due to the mid-week arrival of other guests...

VERY good once we got to our second destination. Some very exciting goings-on for our family (NO mom, I am not pregnant) that I would LOVE to tell you about, but, the timing isn't quite right for releasing it all out into the interwebs. All in good time.

Warm temps while at the cabin this time :)

Still no shower at the cabin :(

Little Women learning to play chess.

The Mr. and I trying to remember how to play chess.

Sophie falling into the lake (shallow) fully clothed.
Gabe jumping into the lake fully clothed to pull her out.
Me right there with my camera to capture the whole thing.

Lord of the Rings-a-thon.

Dark chocolate s'mores once again.

Eating sandwiches during a picnic lunch.

Mosquitos eating us during a picnic lunch.

Itasca State Park.

Mall of America.

Water Park of America.


Rex along for the ride.

Hotel that accommodates pets.

Hotel that has a SHOWER.

Sleeping in.

Sleeping in some more.

Back home just in time to run out and frantically shop for all the girls' school supplies I had neglected to purchase previously. They'd need them for their first day of school... the next day...

Wishing I was still away while being so glad to be home all at the same time.

A little cabin on a lake...

"Chess Mate" as they kept saying after almost every move...

Soaking wet and it took everything within me not to burst out laughing...
She was fine and ended up getting lots of extra attention from the other 2 little women that night...

Huckelberry Iz...

"Charlie's Cherubs"???

Eating lunch in your bathing suit while sitting at the end of a dock makes lunch taste better...

I've got photographs of myself standing next to these guys when I was little...
and my dad probably has some from his childhood as well...

Itasca State Park. GORGEOUS...

The "Off" offered no relief... the mosquitos feasted nearly as well as we did...

The headwaters of the Mississippi river...

Snapped just prior to the devouring of MANY s'mores...

Lego land... Isabel was blown away...

Hotel napping...

It's good to be home folks. Let real life begin...


Saturday, August 22, 2009

Thinking then packing then forgetting then remembering then packing and so on and so forth...

I am a MESS when it comes to packing for a trip. I am IMMEDIATELY overwhelmed by the task at hand - packing for 5 people for 7 days during which there will be varying circumstances and most likely varying weather situations.

I try to start in one spot...

"ok, pants for the girls"

So I start off with every intention of fetching pants for each of the girls.

I get a little ways... all the way to Lillie's dresser, pulling out a few pairs of pants... but on top of her dresser, I see a hair band and remember that I need to pack brushes and hair accessories for each of the girls and in an effort not to forget to do so, I go and do that right away...

So I'm in Sophie's room in an attempt to find a few clips and bands and miscellaneous hair do-hickies, but I open the wrong drawer... the one where I keep her diapers... and I remember...

"Oh YA! I've got to remember to pack plenty of diapers and grab a new package of wipes while I'm at it" (full-on potty training to commence upon the older girls return to school) I go and do that.

I actually grab the diapers and remember to get a new pack of wipes as well... but I only get as far as setting them both in the middle of Sophie's floor when I see her hat hanging on the corner of the changing table and remember I wanted to take each of the girls hats...

I grab her hat and put it on the floor next to the diapers and head off to ask Lillie and Isabel if they know where their hats are.

Lillie finds hers right away but Isabel is in a panic as hers is nowhere to be found. We set off on an all out hunt for her hat...

10 minutes later, still no hat, but I hear that the dryer has stopped so I go down to take the clothes out as I'm sure I'll be needing to pack some of them.

I get to the basement and almost into the laundry room when I see the basket of shoes near the door and remember I need to make sure the girls each have a pair of play shoes and a pair of flip flops to take with us. I head back upstairs to make sure we can find all 6 matching sets between the 3 little women...

The cycle just continues on like this for then next hour or so and now we are at least a good 2.5 hours into "packing" and I still have nothing actually "packed".

No pants for the girls.

No hair doo-dads.

Diapers and wipes are somewhere...

We've located only 2 of the 3 hats we need.

Laundry is still in the dryer.

BUT... of the 6 pairs of shoes we needed to find, we managed to find EVERY ONE!

It's a start.

All of the above is in preparation for the end of summer, "last hoo-rah before school starts" trip that we were able to swing at long last. We're leaving at some point today (that is if I ever end up getting everything packed!) and we'll be back the 30th. We're heading back up to my grandparent's cabin in northern Minnesota for a few days and then to Minneapolis for a few days. I am very much hoping to return rested and relaxed and ready to hit the ground running.

I think I'm going to leave my etsy shop open while I'm away and deal with any convos/sales upon my return.

I hope you are all enjoying these last few weeks of summer!!!


Thursday, August 20, 2009

Happy Accident...

Ok, so I've kept you in suspense long enough... This is the piece I alluded to the other day that I had a bit of trouble with...

Just in case some of you happen to be a bit younger than myself, never knowing life without cell phones and DVD's, this necklace features a tiny replica of a "cassette tape". These things were used to play and record music before the birth of the ipod, or even the Compact Disc for that matter.

It just hit me the other day that my children will most likely never even know what a cassette tape is. It's sad really... however, there's no where on a CD where you can pull and end up with a miles worth of tape.

One of the first cassette tapes I remember listening to was, when my brother Chris and I were little, and we had a "Whinnie the Pooh" tape that we played over and over in our little brown Fisher Price tape recorder.

Another cassette tape that sticks out in my head is one I got when I was in middle school. We had a fundraiser where we sold magazine subscriptions and if you sold so many, you got to get out of class for the afternoon to attend a concert in the auditorium by some no-name band that was just starting out and was touring the midwest, handing out free demo tapes to anyone who wanted one. I remember sitting in that "concert" and snickering with my friends about things like "oh man, this song is goofy" and "LOOK at his HAIR! WHAT the HECK was he thinking?!??" Looking back, I now wished I had that cassette tape signed and put is somewhere where I'd actually be able to find it since that band was the "Backstreet Boys".

Baby bye bye byyye,
(Oh crap, that was an N'SYNC song wasn't it!?? Whatever. All those boy bands sound alike.)

At long last...

Oh my FREAKING WORD. I just looked back through my blog archive to see when the last time was that I posted pics of new work, and do you know when it was???
JULY 1st!!!

HOLY smokes. That is just plain ridiculous.

So ladies (AND gents, for I know there are a few "Misters" that peek in every now and again)... without further delay, I give you a peek at the goodies my hands have created over the last several weeks...

A few recently completed custom orders
(and a gift for someone who doesn't even know yet!)...

And THESE below are up for grabs!

The first one is at a set length, but I have been
experimenting lately with the concept of an
"adjustable length" necklace (pics 2 and 3)
I'm quite happy with how all of these turned out...

AAAND... Trying new things means trial and error. I actually have another piece I finished, but sadly, I had some troubles near it's completion, to the point that I don't feel comfortable offering it for sale. The "glitch" is barely noticeable to the naked eye, but my main concern was not with the look, but with the long term structural integrity of the piece... I make my pieces to LAST folks, and if I have a doubt about a piece's longevity, I don't sell it. This one will stay in my personal collection and serve as a "what not to do next time" example. I'll give it another go at some point.

I think I'll save the pic of it for another day...

AHHH! I LOVE the suspense... but only when I know what's coming. :)

In other "silver-related" news, I am SO excited about a rather involved piece I've been working on here and there over the last several weeks. I was finally able to finish one of the major components just last night and I ended up staying up till 3am, foolishly thinking that I'd be able to finish the whole thing by morning.

It was not to be.

Sleep became necessary.

It was definitely an "eyes were bigger than my stomach while in the buffet line" sort of night.

Sometimes I get so eager to see a piece through to completion that I end up doing things differently than I had originally envisioned in order to finish something sooner than it otherwise would have taken... no corner cutting... just different than originally planned.

This piece deserves to be seen through to fruition just as I see it in my head at this very moment, so, I shall finish it over the course of the next few weeks (rather than hours) and show you pics just as soon as I'm able.

Sleep is overrated in my opinion but none the less, I suppose I should at least give it a try.

Wishing you a loverly Thursday!!!


Wednesday, August 19, 2009

"Wordless Wednesday" replaced by "Anniversary Wednesday" for today...

Today my hubby and I celebrate the 9th anniversary of the day He and I became "us".

I know I was singing his praises just a few short days ago (as his birthday is just 9 days before our anniversary) but I feel to gush yet again. He is the most amazing man I have ever had the privilege to know and I am left speechless when it comes to expressing how much love my heart holds for this man.

My Hubby.

My "baby daddy". :)

The "Clyde" to my "Bonnie".

My very best friend.

It was on a rainy Saturday, 9 years ago today, that we pledged our love and our lives to each other till death do us part. He had just turned 22 and I was just shy of my 20th birthday. We were young by most people's standards, but, we both knew we were absolutely doing the right thing in deciding to join our lives at that very moment in time. Since that day...

We have matured.

We have grown.

We have seen the best and the worst in each other.

We have laughed...
...a LOT

We have known lack and we have known plenty, and have decided "plenty" is preferred.

We have become parents and we have become home-owners.

We have met trials and we have seen them through together.

We have loved each other when it was smooth-sailing, and we have chosen to love when loving wasn't the easy choice.

We know everything there is to know about each other, yet somehow, we manage to learn new things every day.

We are "we" and we always will be.

Happy Anniversary my honey.
You hold my heart forever and always.

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Still kickin'...

Hired a sitter.

Getting ready to make a trip to the post office.

Gonna stop for some coffee as well.

Fighting a nasty "end of summer" cold.

Kind of sound like a man due to aforementioned cold.

Preparing for our trip up north.

Peeking out the window obsessively to see if the mail has arrived yet as I am waiting on some pearls that must arrive in order for me to finish a set of wedding jewelry for a friend...

...just peeked again. No mail yet.

Need to do laundry.

Need to remove my nail polish.

Need to eat something.


Yep, bagel it is.

Gonna finish 3 necklaces today.

REALLY wishing my left ear would pop.

Making back to school preparations.

Gotta find the school supply list that I misplaced AGAIN.

Found it. It was in one of the 3 places that I thought it would be.

I think I'm only gonna wear one earring today.


Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Wordless Wednesday... with just a couple words...

He isn't mine but OH how I wish he were. He's a 4 week old silver lab and yes, he is just as soft and sweet as he looks. :)


Monday, August 10, 2009

Happy Birthday to my honey...

Today is my honey's birthday. He is... older than what he would care to admit. He informed me the other day that he will no longer be aging. He's just gonna stay the same age as what he turned on his last birthday. Can I sign up for that?

To my honey ...
I love you to the ends of the earth and then some,
times infinity,
plus 1.
You are my best friend and my very most favorite person on the face of the planet.
I am SO thankful that God made sure that you were created and even more thankful that He then saw to it that we'd get to be together forever.

A better husband and father, none could find if they tried.

I love you with all that is within me.

Happy Birthday Gabe,


Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Saturday, August 1, 2009

My life as I know it at this very moment in time...

I just wanted to pop in to fill you all in on what the HECK has been up with me as of late, and, if you had noticed a distinct ABSENCE of jewelry pics 'round these parts as of late, it's because there's been a distinct absence of creating as of late.

I feel like I've been stretched out in so many different directions that nothing I'm trying to do is getting done very well.

I've got a lot of things on my plate at the moment but rest assured I have recently ("recently" meaning 2 nights ago while laying in bed awake till nearly 2:30am) put a bit of a "plan" into action for myself and things should be turning around for me over the course of the next few weeks or so.

I have never really considered myself much of a "schedule girl". I typically ABHOR structure and I'm not a big fan of charting out my life.


It has recently come to my attention that whether I like it or not, creating somewhat of a schedule for myself is absolutely necessary.

There are things in life that just may not ever happen unless you at least pencil them in.

There's more to it than just "needing to make time to make jewelry" but that is what I'm zeroing in on today.

I also wanted to take a minute to let you know that I LOVE doing custom orders and I DON'T see myself EVER giving that up, but, I've never really had any kind of plan in place as far as how I go about filling them, and so far, everyone who has asked has gotten put on the list.

That list has kept me busy (not that I'm not thrilled about it, don't get me wrong!) to the point that I have absolutely ZERO time for making anything else and it's taking me longer than I'd like to complete pieces for people with the current schedule I'm keeping (or NOT keeping rather), basically working whenever I can work it in between being a wife and a mommy.

I have started to notice that this is not working out.

I MISS making whatever the HECK pops into my head and showing it off for the world to see, knowing no one is waiting for it and no one even knows about it up to that point, but me.

Plus, it seems my every spare moment is filled up with something and there's no time left for recharging. Enter: the schedule.

SO... over the next few weeks I'm going to be working on the current custom orders I have on my list (if you have already contacted me regarding a custom order up to this point - 12:02PM CST on July the 4th, 2009 - then fear not, you are on the list and your piece will be created in the order that your request was received!). I'll be halting all new requests for the time being, and devising a plan as to how I want to go forward regarding custom orders. I don't know how long it will take me to get things set "just so" but I'll definitely put the word out here on my blog as well as in my etsy shop announcement once things are "set in stone" (HA!)

I love you all to PIECES and you have no idea what a wonderful feeling it is for me just knowing you're there.

Deep breath.