Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Halloween soon!

You can feel it in the air today, that Fall feeling! Yipeee!!!
I am excited, as normal for Fall, but this year it seems that we are in that weather pattern that we normally don't get... a slow change in seasons. We are in Indian Summer right now, something that is not normal for our part of the woods... er, desert.  That slow change that brings cooler nights, warmer days, and that transition into the cold part of the year is not a normal one for us. Normally, we get a freeze just before Halloween that brings the most beautiful colored Fall leaves, followed the next day by 60 mph winds that blow all the leaves away.
I'm not saying that won't happen this year, I am  just saying we have a chance that maybe, if the weather holds and we hold our mouths just right, we might have more than a day of beauty around here.

I love this time of year.  The cool mornings, wearing a sweater with my shorts and flip-flops, sitting outside with coffee or pumpkin latte... mmmmm....
I love baking, and I found a recipe for pumpkin coffee cake with pecan pie crumble... mmmmm. When I find the recipe again, I'll link it here.  I don't know about you, but I am really excited about trying some new recipes. I have vowed that this year, I am going to perfect my pumpkin soup. I bought a "kit" to make some about 10 years ago and it was nasty. I don't like sweet soup, and this was sweet. I like savory soups, and have tried every now and then to make a pumpkin soup that is nice and savory, with just the right amounts of spices that let you know it is pumpkin, and keep it from the sweet side.  I bought a couple of pumpkins already, and I will write the recipes down so I won't leave it to chance if I make it right I want to be able to do it again!

Speaking of Fall.... I just entered a blog hop for Halloween!!!  I am so excited! it is Suburban Girl Studios Halloween/Day of the Dead Jewelry Bloghop and I can't wait to get started. The jewelry has to include at least one art bead, and I don't have much in the way of artbeads for Halloween... so I am making something. I don't know what yet, but we can narrow it down,
1. I know I won't be making anything out of glass....
2. I know I will be making something either for Halloween, or Day of the Dead.
3. I know it will have to uber-cool....
I have a love/hate relationship with Halloween. I love costumes and decorating for Halloween, but I don't like really celebrating the holiday, Extortion and strongarming aren't things I want to teach my kids, but it is so fun to go out and be a bit scared and giggy.... I can't refuse.  My son loves  to decorate the yard, he decided last year that he was too old to dress up.... he was just going to hand out candy... until the last minute and he decided he needed to be something. Zombie.
Well, that's all we could come up with at the last minute. He has a vampire cape but we couldn't find it, so zombie it was, he had fun, and went around with one of the neighbor kids, leaving me to hand out candy. He wants to be chained to the tree out front this year.... to scare the kids that come by.  I don't know if this will happen or not, Oh, we have the "chains" but I am thinking that it might not be such a good idea. We have a tall  statue we put on the front porch, that lights up and laughs eerily,  and a spider that drops down, and a creepy door mat that scares the crap out of you if you don't know it is there. We also have eyes in the bushes and spider webs and bugs and rats all over the floor of the entry way, I set up a "lab" complete with buzzards eggs, spare eyeballs,  Vampire coctails, etc.... it's fun, and the little kids get scared, the older ones usually don't until the spider drops on them... then they holler and we all laugh. I don't know about a live zombie.... maybe....




Sunday, September 15, 2013

Dust Bunnies and Duck Dynesty

bedroom after part of canopy taken down
I've been not working for so long that I am climbing the walls. I had internet and phone problems and let them talk me into going digital... which meant that I had to clean house... sweep the dust bunnies that look like the were-rabbits and clean the mound of paperwork that I have neglected... off my desk. Well, it didn't end there. The first set of cute cable guys didn't install the system where I could use phones through  the whole house, me, didn't know, or rather understand, what they were doing or not doing... so I had to have them come back out... except it wasn't the cute cable guys, it was a not so cute, not so nice, and my dog didn't like.. cable guy, who didn't understand why I wanted more than one phone.... and then he told me that I could get phones that work off one...duh, yes, I know, but I don't want to buy a new phone system right now, I told them I wanted my old equipment to work...

OK, so he asks where the phone is hooked up at... well, the kitchen was the first place and then they plugged into the bedroom, and that is where the equipment is... so he tells me, you'll have to move your bed out from the wall... since that's where the plug is... right smack dab in the middle of the headboard.
So... he says that is probably why they didn't do the work in the first place... Well.... they unplugged my old line they could have at least said something. We have 6 lines in the house, which not all of them are where I want a phone, but darnit, if I want a phone there, that is where it should work....

So... he reschedules me.

I took apart the canopy to the bed, cursing every step, and believe me, if I knew or could use more curse words... they would have come in handy. I only have a few in my vocabulary, and I might have made up some of those, but I could have used a broader set of words to curse that oversized monstrosity. I found that I hadn't cleaned all the dust rabbits either. And I found the stones to a ring that my daughter had given me one year for my birthday, one of those interchangeable rings.... so the venture paid off... The stones had fallen out of the box I guess, and got caught on this little ledge on the bedframe. I suppose that the two missing still were sucked up in the vacuum.

The next cable guy that came out was a bit cuter, and my dog really liked him... he stands on the porch and asks me if this order is right... His work order said to fix a crooked face plate....

What?

bedrom after cleaning and painting I didn't put the canopy back on... I like this
Yep, that was his work order, so I go into the whole story, which is now ingrained in my mind so I can recite the whole scenario to whomever wants to listen.... and some that don't..... so I get finished and he says.... I'll have to charge you for that....

WHAT???

So I call the office and start in on them... in the meanwhile the guy fixes my cable, and then he tells me that if he fixes the problem, he won't be able to put a phone in the bedroom.... What???????
So I am going up the ranks at the cable office, first I got Austin, they gave me to their supervisor, who in turn had to talk to the supervisor, and gave me to the office in Odessa... because that is where the tech was from... and I was on hold.... the tech came in and said....
I can give it a quick fix and I won't charge you for it, and you can keep your phone in the bedroom....

He said, just tell them I didn't do anything and they won't charge you either....
So with a splitter and a new cord and some creativity, I have working phones and didn't get a charge.... I love that guy.... And if I was 20 years younger.... I would have asked him out on a date....

That has been the highlight of my month thus far....

I entered my necklace into the challenge Blogger/Non-Blogger, but I am the only one that voted for my necklace... I am bummed. It is so hard for me to put my work out there for people to see.... I just don't want to be judged at all... and that is a hard thing. I have so many reasons not to want to put myself out there.... so many reasons that I want to be private.... I have had such a hard time just letting myself be seen. Physically and metaphysical, I just haven't wanted to just allow myself to be seen.

I know a lot has to do with my ex, who judged me harshly and incessantly, and with my husband's one sister-in-law that has been so very mean and vicious over the past 5 years... ah, who am I kidding, My husband couldn't stand her for a long time before his death, but since then, it has been pretty brutal.  But the truth is, I have been judged all my life. If I am honest, it has made me who I am, Kind of cowering and in the shadows as much as possible. I never wanted to be called on in school, I never wanted attention. I wanted to be part of things, like clubs and choir... but I wanted to be part of the group and not to stand out in any way.

Does that make sense?

Nope, not in the slightest. I was Historian for the Junior Classical League in High School and the Area representative for the Texas State Junior Classical League... and Secretary in the Women's Choir in
High School, then on into college and after,  I was on the governing boards of a number of organizations, actually until just the past few years I have been out there, doing what I like, but I try to keep under the radar.... It is contradictory, I know, but that's me.
Matter of fact, that I write a blog that is public is rather contradictory. I have written for 5 or 6 years now, but I kept it semi-private. In the end, I made everything very private... but now, I am saying to Hell with it, those people that want to snoop on me, have a ball.... If you think that you can somehow hurt me more... have at it....
So.... mystery solved... or at least part of it. This is me....
I am pretty hard on my friends, and for that I am a bit ashamed. I pretty much won't tell anyone about my past... if I do, it is only after a number of years, and under the request of ... not secrecy, but of a request to not go out and blab to the world, what my business is.  I have tried to open up more and allow people to see me, my past, my family... but it seems that 'friends' aren't so willing, even after saying they are going to respect my wishes and not go around and talk about me to everyone they meet.... to honor my friendship... You know, that old, I told her, who went and told her friend, who went to her BFF who went to her friend.... and I hear about it from her.... or my father in law.... Whatever the case might be.... I drop friends for that.
I also drop friends who judge me....
I dropped a friend who I really love in that special friend sort of way. Someone that I admired and really liked. ..... That was hard, but it was over the judgmental attitude... you know, that attitude of I know this is what you are thinking, because I am smart and I know this is your ulterior motive....
That was a tough one. .. I don't like to be told that I am something, when I am not. I don't like to be judged for being conservative or liberal... or in the middle of the road. I don't want to be told that I am something based on one statement that I make... You know... I just don't get people... they say they are very "tolerant" of this and that, yet when it comes right down to it.... they aren't.  They won't tolerate your opinion unless it is the same as theirs... I don't want to live in a world where people are all the same... how boring if you both like the same movies, think the same thoughts, walk lockstep...
That's ok.  Drop me if you want... think what you want, but don't go of  on me, telling me that you know my heart... because unless you have known me for a very, very long time....you don't...
Even then.... you might not.... I am complex. I am me... don't try to make me out to be someone I am not or who you want me to be...

So...... off my soap box....

I have been going crazy, yes... very crazy, not being able to work. I try little things, but at least moving and cleaning have helped me stay busy, and I haven't had time to be too fidgety.
Today though, I wanted to take my son to hear Willie Robertson, from Duck Dynesty, speak at one of the local churches. We went out early but they were parked way out by the highway and down the farm to market road and I knew there was no chance for us to get in... so we were going to wait for the second program, but I just got to the point I couldn't see any more... so I called a neighbor that I know would be going... and sent my son with them. He enjoyed it a lot, but I didn't want to try to go, the lights hurt my eyes so much and after driving into the sun and sitting in traffic, my eyes were too sore to think about going.... I used all my drops and ointments and had a lie down, and felt a bit better...

I have been so bored, terribly so when my son is gone.. I had a sweatshirt for my mom, I wanted to make it into a jacket seems like for ages, just never getting around to actually getting it out... I have just kept putting it away. I'm not in the painting mood, but since I have nothing else to do.... I got it out and started stenciling and stamping and painting...  I didn't have a plan, and I don't have any fabric in mind to use for the cuffs, etc... so I just started in with colors she likes. I should put a humming bird in, since she loves them so much, I'm not done, I can put in anything I want...
It is as ready as I want it to be, all that needs to be done is  to sew on the front facing, collar and cuffs, and cut out the bits and pieces that need to come out... I will just have to wait until another day to finish it... I am still off and on again about sewing. I don't want to sew my fingers so I'll wait until a day that I have more sight.


Waiting to be finished into a jacket

Saturday, September 07, 2013

How comfortable am I?

The judging is on with the Blogger/non-Blogger challenge, it is the last round of the  challenge, and it is really full of nice work. My work isn't that spectacular, but... I love it. Sadly,  I am probably in last place to win... but, hey... I am finally allowing my work to go out there... to be seen and judged. 

I entered the Memories and Thanks Blog Hop last year, didn't get picked, and was kind of relieved. I was sad that I didn't get to participate, but really relieved that I didn't have to be public. This year, I entered and Lori Anderson added me, along with everyone else that entered... and I really enjoyed it. The work was not judged in any way, so I was ok about showing my design with the lovely beads that Shannon Hicks sent to me. The beads were beautiful so I had a wonderful variety to work with.

I also joined in the Bead Hoarder's Blog Hop, which did have a judging, though I didn't enter it...  I just wasn't ready for that. I have also had so much trouble with my eyes this year, that I didn't feel the work was up to my standards... it was creative, but I just didn't want to be out there, being judged... so I had to think about this one... Everyone judges the work, they vote on each of the color pallets they like the most and... mine, sadly, is probably in last place. Well, at least I actually entered it. 

I feel like that, in and of itself, is a big step for me. I have kept myself so far away from everyone and every thing for so long now, that just letting someone see my work is something special.  Yes... this is another one of my oddities... I go to festivals and faires and meet people, and like at the doctor's office...and show off my work there, but it is something different to put your work up there for the whole world to see... or at least my little corner of the world to see... 

I know a lot of it comes from all the problems the past 5 years has brought... or longer than that if I am truthful. It has always been hard for me to meet people, and even harder for me to let my guard down. I can 'meet' people, no bother... But getting to know someone... letting them know you. I don't post pictures of myself...  I did on here recently. I only did that because of the problems that a few of the Bead Soup people have had with a woman who was not who she said she was... I started thinking about it and wrote a blog on it, and thought... nobody knows me from Eve... and if I want to make friends, and actually get to know someone... well, I have to allow them to see me. Not just hear about the esoteric things I write about. I have taken those down.

I really hesitate to write about some of the things that have made me like this. This shut off person that is more hermit than business woman. I hide away and am at peace with myself, with my kids and close friends. But I have found that I am shutting off more and more of my close friends.  I am hard on friends. I expect a lot out of them... family as well. I expect loyalty, I don't want gifts or fake fronts... and I want someone who will stand up for me.  Is that asking too much?

I don't want to be judged either.  I recently told a friend, who I thought was a close friend, that I didn't want to have a friendship anymore... because I am stubborn first and foremost. My friend took something that I said and believed that I was a racist. Well, I don't know that I am or not... I don't think I am, but when faced with some of the things that I say.... maybe I am in some form or other. I think somewhere inside we all are, no matter what our skin color is. We aren't so much racist as that we all gravitate towards people that are similar to ourselves. I like people who bead... who play video games.. who quilt... who are creative... I prefer men that are tall, dark haired, blue eyes... Not overly muscular, but aren't fat... What does that make me?
 I don't think that being yourself or being a friend entails being a color... I don't think it entails being a religion..a race, creed... isn't that how you judge someone by? maybe? I don't know. 
I have seen racism come from so many places... People that are so nice have this side of them... I have a friend, Cynthia... her in-laws don't like her because her skin is lighter than her husbands... I went to school with Paul McIntosh, who was in my estimation, the most handsome man I have ever come across... His team mates called him Chief, to some that is derogatory, to the other teammates, it was a compliment, to him? he didn't care...  
I have friends and family who think the term Indian or American Indian is degrading, and those who don't, you can say native, or indigenous, but to some that is derogatory, you should use their tribal or ancestral name... which even if you are native, you have no idea where some people belong. Sometimes it is just easier in our lazy way... to lump everyone into categories. I have friends and family that don't necessarily like white people... go figure. 

Wow... that just went to a place that I didn't mean to go. But I'll let it stand. 

So,  I told my friend that judged me on something that came out maybe not the way I intended it to... not to judge me... I don't. I don't want to know how bad or how good anyone thinks I am... 
I guess that feeling has morphed into not wanting someone to judge my work, If it is good, someone will buy it, if not, I need to strive to make it better, but in he end, I need to do what I feel led to do, or it won't satisfy me. 

 I have had a long history of being judged. by family, by friends, by my ex, by my kids, by my co-workers, employers, and ... darn it... I just want to be...me. Not making something that has to be judged critically but just creating something that I think is beautiful. That I want to do. 

I also know that sometimes we have to suck it up and just do what will sell... and that is for me to decide if I want to do. If I need the money, I'll make something or do something to make money that maybe isn't what I 'want' to do, but as long as it isn't illegal or immoral... I'm ok with that.  Does that sound contrary to what I have been preaching?

Sometimes I write something or say something that sounds contrary to what I say or do otherwise... and I know that. Sometimes I might say  something,and it just comes out wrong or sounding contradictory. Like, you know, I do have mixed emotions,  I have mixed feelings on a lot of subjects, and I can see both sides of a lot of issues, and I can agree with both sides on some issues... Everything is not black and white... there is so much grey area that you can't just lump things, can you?
 For instance. I loved my ex-husband, I couldn't stand to be in the same room with him...Contradiction? Yes, but that is a no brainer... Both of those statements are true. 
I love a really well cooked omlet... .I can't stand to eat eggs... 
Both of those statements are true. 
I love a cozy, small cottage... I can't stand small spaces. 
Both are true.
I think the borders should be more protected, I welcome immigrants... ...is that contradictory? 
I love to have friends, I can't stand having people around me that are insincere. ... ah, but is that contradictory?

I can be very contradictory, but I am not lying. I don't see that welcoming immigrants and despising illegal immigration is contradictory. We need to make it equal for all to be able to come into the country. Anything otherwise is racist to me.  I always use my sister in law to reinforce this. She had to do it the legal way, and to bring her son... she struggled and did it right. I admire her, I look up to her. She is what the 'American Dream' is about.   It is not a matter of her skin color, religion, creed, but what is right and legal. Is that a contradiction? 

I also believe in giving every child, no matter their skin tone, their background, their belief, the chance to have the dream of freedom, health and, yes... of prosperity. I do ask for loyalty. Loyalty to the country. Is that racist? Loyalist, yes, but is that a bad thing? I don't ask for everyone to believe the same thing... but to pledge allegiance to our country, yes.. I think we need that.  If we are going to live together in this melting pot... we have to stick together.

I lost another 'friend' because I found she wasn't loyal. She talked about me to other people, allowing this to get back to me in short order... she told her friend, who told her bff who told her friend... who told me... You know the drill.  I told her once... that this didn't set well with me.  She tried to blame it on another friend, which might have had some truth in it... but that friend has never admitted to telling anyone anything about me.... so.... when it happened again, and I heard how she was telling someone else everything about me... well...
I guess the term  'please don't talk to anyone else about me' should be explained.... 
And,  I guess I was a bit harsh. I don't have tolerance anymore for anyone that would do something that I specifically asked them not to do. I have kids to raise, I don't need friends that need raising as well.
SIGH.......
Is the idea of loyalty to country such a bad thing? Is loyalty to family, friends such a bad thing? How do you handle someone that is disloyal to you?


Thursday, September 05, 2013

blogger/non blogger necklace.

I haven't written in a while, What little I do has been hindered by my eyes. Though they are better, it is still a long road to being better. I am just impatient I suppose.

I started a necklace back in May, kind of just for myself, I haven't done anything just for me in quit a while, and I had these pretty shells and odd ceramic tiles, and thought about a necklace. Well... a friend saw it and thought she really wanted it, It really matched a dress she had bought for a specific event,  but then she found a different dress... and she needed something that would go with it. So... I put away the turquoise necklace and started on the black/white/red and silver necklace for her. I just never got back to the necklace that I had started for me... Do you ever do that? start on a project and just lay it aside to do something for someone else and never get back to the project you really like?

Teal Goddess
So... Lori Anderson added me to the Blogger/ non-Blogger Challenge-9th round ~Double the Fun, I thought I would go ahead and give it a try. I looked at the inspiration pictures and thought what a wonderful set of colors to work with. I wanted to do both colors in a project but I ended up going back to the eye doctor and he gave me more drops, which make it 4 prescriptions that I am using plus the three types of eye lubricant that I use, constantly.  Actually, he put a corneal shield in the right eye to keep in for 72 hours.. ha, it lasted about 50 and most of that time it was in the corner of the eye... so, he gave me this other med to take the shields place. It is a protein of some sort, it makes my eyes fuzzy, or more fuzzy... I can't really see much, I have an hour or so to work a day, and that's it.

Sheesh....I was afraid that I wouldn't be able to do anything for this challenge, and I really wanted to... so,  I took the necklace that I started back in May, that I never finished, and started working on it for one of the color sets in the challenge.
The picture I chose, The Teal Goddess, is of a woman in turquoise pouring something out of a vessel, it is kind of ethereal and beautiful and my favorite colors...  This is the most amazing coincidence :)  I actually have the chance of actually finishing a piece for the challenge. I decided to go in a totally different direction with the piece. I had pretty much decided since my friend wanted the piece that it would have a ribbon to tie the bib, since she likes that, and that it would be kind of a choker look. The main body of the piece would be sparkly and I'd have a lot of dangley bits with sparkley crystals and hex beads so it would catch light... but you know how that goes.

Since this is for myself again, I really wanted to kind of be silly. I wanted to try a few things to make the necklace unique (like it isn't) and  I want a longer necklace, I don't like anything close to my neck. I have a scar on the right side of my face and down onto my neck and back behind my right ear, and it is very sensitive, so nothing can touch it, or brush against it... I used beads to make the "chain" and made a loop and bar clasp using peyote stitch to make them both. I really like the odd way I made it, I wanted to be a little different, and I think I did ok.

Inspired by the Teal Goddess print
I added a net on one side of the bib, and a piece of coral (beaded of course) to the other, and added a little more "sea glass" beads, and really had fun with the piece. Two of the beads are my own, I don't really like doing glass work, but I had to try it out to find out that it just isn't for me. . I admire people that make beads out of glass... it is something that is beautiful and fascinating, but it just is not for me. I am afraid of the torch for one thing!!! I use a torch for metal and enameling... but it isn't the same. So I kind of hid the ugly things in the beaded "chain".  If you work with glass... know that I think you are super great!!!

I didn't buy anything new to do this challenge. I am in this challenge with the hope that if I do enough stuff like this, I will use up some of the stash in my workroom... OK, no more kidding, I want to use up my stash that is overflowing and is in the workroom, living room, kitchen, garage, and the closed in porch. Probably in the storage building as well.... ok, and my bedroom.

possibly in my closet.