March 29, 2009

Tool Magic - A Lesson In Patience

I received a shipment of beads today -glorious glass, colorful stones, and a few silver ones, too. They're delicious to look at and touch. I have so many ideas swimming around in my head on how to showcase those beads - I really should put my ideas down on paper, before I forget. Alas, something else is prompting me to make this blog entry my priority instead. Let's call it a lesson in patience.

A little background: there's a fabulous thing called "Tool Magic", and if it's not in your jewelry toolbox then it should be. It's the best invention ever (right after Costco's Kirkland Baby Wipes). It's a rubber coating that goes on your tools to help prevent marring your wire work. It's a little expensive, but definitely worth the money! And, it even comes in a variety of cool. The only downside I've found is that it takes a few hours for it to dry before you can use your tools. As Patience is not one of my virtues, I find the dry-time incredibly annoying. Hence, my blog post today.

So - back to my bead shipment. I'm telling you, these beads are just BEGGING to be dressed in silver, accented with other cool beads, and worn on the ears/wrists/neck of some lucky girl. I sat down to work some magic...only to realize that my round nose pliers (and most of my other tools) were desperately in need of a new coating of Tool Magic. Impatient as I am, I figured I could surely get a few good loops and wraps out of them still...and ended up marring some wire. I believe there's an old saying...something about "haste" and "waste". I understand why it's lasted through the ages.

So, as I wait for my tools to dry, I figured I'd get my frustrations down on paper & write my blog entry - two birds, one stone (another great saying). I feel a bit better, but I doubt my new beads would say the same.

March 27, 2009

making a name for myself (i think)

No big surprise...I love silver jewelry. Also no big surprise...I love to be comfortable. Give me a pair of great jeans, a cup of coffee, and I'll be kicking my bare feet up on the ottoman with a smile on my face.

Back to the jewelry...I found myself constantly searching for (but rarely finding) the next "perfect" pair of go-to earrings. I was frustrated that I couldn't find something my style...for under $20. So, when my friend Tracy told me all about the earrings she was making (awesome work, btw!, I thought "hmmm...maybe I should look into this". Dilemma solved! I've been buying up beads like they're going out of style (don't tell my husband), and toiling away into the wee hours of the night trying to perfect the "Simple Loop" technique - which, once perfected, really is simple. X-hundred of dollars later, I thought "hmmm...maybe I should consider putting my designs on the internet, and try to recoup some of my investment". Dilemma solved! I created a site on Etsy (thanks for the great tips, Tracy!) and have even managed a few sales.

I'm now discovering what an amazing amount of time and energy it takes to market, promote, design and research...all in an effort to share my designs...and, yes, hopefully recoup a tiny bit of my investment. This is going to be a journey...and I can't wait to see where I land in a year.

just one more bead...i promise!

Have you ever sat down to check your email real quick...only to realize 3 hours later that you somehow got sucked into the "www"-vortex? How does that happen?? I swear I really have no interest in Paris Hilton yet, occassionally, I find myself reading the latest scoop on her fabulous fashions, and I have no idea how I got there. I digress. So - I've found that jewelry designing is a bit similar...only, instead of the "www", it's my "studio" that seems to be a vortex. I go in to try out one quick bead combination, and 3 hours later I realize that my children are hungry, the laundry still hasn't been done, and my house is probably a disaster. Speaking of which...I better go make breakfast for the kids...and, throw a load in the washer. Tell me I'm not alone...then I won't feel so guilty.

March 26, 2009

reinventing "me"

Has it really been 7 years?? No, way. Way! It's been 7 years since I stopped contributing to our Household Income. 7 years of clipping coupons. 7 years of unemployment. 7 years as "Director of Household Affairs". And, 7 years as stay-at-home-mom to my 3 sweet boys (well, 4 if you count my husband...who's just as sweet). I look back at how fast time has flown by, and how big my boys are getting, and I wonder "How the heck have I been able to pull this off for so long??" Somehow, amidst the 7 years of having at least one child in diapers every day (yes! EVERY day), the 5 or so homes we moved in and out of, the however-many career changes my husband has made, the charter school I helped start, and now the jewelry designing business I've begun...somehow, I've still managed to raise good kids, keep my loving husband, and pay the bills on time (well, most of the time). 7 years ago, I had the title of "Director of Financial Reporting & Management" and I earned a paycheck. Now...I have no title, no paycheck...and I'm infinitely happier than I could have ever imagined. Still...there will soon be a day when my boys are all in school full-time (yes!) and I'll have 7 hours to my self. That's scary. I'm not sure I can live with my self, by myself, for that long each day. What will I do? How will I occupy my time? Hmmm...well, it's still a couple of years down the road...I guess I have time to figure it all out. I'll have to start preparing to reinvent "me"...after I pay the bills...which are probably late.