Wednesday, December 31, 2008

2009 Bead-A-Day calendar

I am a featured artist in the 2009 Bead-A Day Calendar click here to order one

Disclaimer; I am not associated with this calendar nor do I receive any monies from the sales

Remembering Mother & Dad

Dolly Tucker - 31 December 2007
Bert Tucker - 15 December 1980

Sweet are the memories silently kept,
Of those we love and will never forget.
Nancy, Colleen, Anne, Ellen, Isabell & families.

Mum & Dad you danced so beautifully together & I miss you so much

Monday, December 22, 2008

More on the bailout $$$$

Where'd the bailout money go? Shhhh, it's a secret

WASHINGTON – It's something any bank would demand to know before handing out a loan: Where's the money going?
But after receiving billions in aid from U.S. taxpayers, the nation's largest banks say they can't track exactly how they're spending the money or they simply refuse to discuss it.

"We've lent some of it. We've not lent some of it. We've not given any accounting of, 'Here's how we're doing it,'" said Thomas Kelly, a spokesman for JPMorgan Chase, which received $25 billion in emergency bailout money. "We have not disclosed that to the public. We're declining to."

Read on here:-

Shame, shame, shame is all I can say!!

Sunday, December 21, 2008

Where your tax dollars went!

Banks that are getting taxpayer bailouts, awarded their top executives nearly $1.6 billion in salaries, bonuses, and other benefits last year, an Associated Press analysis reveals.

The rewards came even at banks where poor results last year foretold the economic crisis that sent them to Washington for a government rescue. Some trimmed their executive compensation due to lagging bank performance, but still forked over multimillion-dollar executive pay packages.

Read on here:-

I am appalled about this & if you are too, write to your Senators & Representatives about it & demand accountability..

Saturday, December 20, 2008

The Bead Nest

The Bead Nest is what my husband has called the spot where I sit to bead. I have a beautiful cabinet to store my beads in that I designed & DH built for me.

I have spent the last few days sorting beads & getting them in the new flippy containers I bought back in July & I am finally done. (where I get my flippies)


The Bead Nest

I use an old TV tray to bead on & have 2 OttLites, one either side of me when I bead. Notice, there are no more tubes or baggies of beads. I do need some bigger storage for the cabs & stuff but it is sorted for now. I have 'deep storage' for extra beads of the ones in the flippies, in my messy studio. The studio is next in line for a re-organize & what better time than winter to do that.

We are surrounded by snow here at the beach, this is a picture of our place that my DH took yesterday morning & more snow is falling as I write this Brrrrrrrrrr

This little guy is an Anna's Hummingbird, one of several that come to the feeders I keep out all year for them but especially in winter when there really is no food for them. He is perched on the Christmas lights on the front porch near the feeder. I have feeders on the front porch & the back deck, as the males are very territorial, they sit nearby & chase other males & the females away from the feeders.

Saturday, December 6, 2008

A little bit more

I have got my first 2 pages attached to the ultra suede, they still need to be edged but that can wait for another day...
I am happy with how these look now, the stack stitch really frames them nicely while hiding the edge of the fabric

I am waiting on some more ultra suede in different colours. Ya gotta love E-Bay, eh?

Monday, December 1, 2008

BJP pages to share

I have got 3 of my 'The Women in my life' BJP pages finished....

And yes, I did change my mind again about my pages but hey that's a Woman's Prerogative, isn't it? I decided that as lovely as the Nancy Doll is, it was bigger than I wanted & I was also finding beading on a stuffed form harder than it used to be due to some issues with my wrist.

My pages are oval 5" x 33/4" & backed with fusible Pellon interfacing & will be mounted on leather.

My plan is to match the face with the month of birth but some months have more than one birthday so as my Sisters & my dear Mother come first, the rest will fill in the gaps..

Here is September - This is Nancy, my oldest sister & you can read more about her if you scroll down a few posts or click on the link above.

This is October & Katy, my granddaughter.. Katy turned 18 last August & is living in Darwin, NT Australia. She is the youngest of my only daughter's 2 girls. Katy shares August with her Mother, so Elizabeth with be my August face, which is only fitting & right..

December is Isabell, my youngest sister, who celebrates 55 on the 17th of this month. She has 3 sons & 5 grandchildren. Her & her DH own a motel down home in New Zealand, so if you are heading down to New Plymouth in Taranaki, NZ, be sure to stop by & say hi.

I still have to do November's page & I am waiting on my girlfriend to bring me a picture so that I can get hers started..

Meanwhile I am working at getting my pages attached to the leather or Ultra Suede which I am using to display them..

Long time no post..

I have been battling with a bit of depression, not something I enjoy. So rather than subject my bloggy friends to my daily woes, I have been reading but keeping myself mostly to myself.

I am finally beginning to see the light at the end of the tunnel and it's not a train but bright shiny beads twinkling in the light of my Ott-Lite.

Last week my DH read in the paper that a bead shop in Nehalem (down the Oregon Coast about 1 & 1/2 hours south of us) was going out of business with all stock at 50% off. So on Black Friday, we headed south in the wind & rain to that little bead shop & I loaded up on sparkly beads, which as we all know, lift your spirits more than almost anything..

Crossing the Megler Bridge from Washington to Oregon in the wind & rain. Astoria sits beneath the hills that you can see in the distance & that bit that sticks straight up, is the top of the bridge where the ships pass below - Yep we drive right up that thing!

These are the sparklies I got, they are size 11 cuts except for the reds (12s) & the oilslick purples on the right (9s) I also got some turquoise beads, some lovely blue pearls & some metal nailheads. The little Swarovski flower sew-ons are from a couple of E-Bay buys that I just had to have..

Sunday, October 19, 2008

I've been Tagged...

I haven't been very active on here lately but today, I got a message from Charlene to say that I'd been tagged with one of those blog memes where you share random facts about yourself and then tag your friends. So I thought I'd better get on here..

Here are the rules:

1. Link to your tagger and list these rules on your blog.
2. Share 7 facts about yourself on your blog, some random, some weird.
3. Tag 7 people at the end of your post by leaving their names as well as links to their blog.
4. Let them know they have been tagged by leaving a comment on their blog.

So without further ado, here are some facts about me:

1. I put butter or Margarine on my french fries because I really, really, really dislike ketchup except in occasionally in cooking to flavor sauce.

2. I met my husband on line, when I was living in Paraguay, down in South America & he was up in WA. USA - which is where I live these days.

3. I recently discovered that I like oatmeal & have oats for breakfast every day, yum..

4. I am a volunteer at both our local school & the Boys & Girls Club, helping children with literacy problems.

5. I was born at 7 am on the 7th day of the 7th month & my sun, moon & rising stars are all in Cancer - yeah I'm a bit weird & a bit phsicadelic as well.

6. I only have half an index finger on my right hand - how weird is that?

7. I can use the hula hoop in both directions ;P

As for the 7 soon to be tagged, here they are:


Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Apple, Date, Pecan loaf

This is my Mum's Date loaf recipe - just one of the delicious treats you would find in her cake tins..

2 cups dates
2 level tspns baking soda
2 cups boiling water
2 tblspns butter
1 1/4 cups sugar

3 heaped cups flour
2 tspns baking powder

Chop the dates & pour over 2 cups boiling water, add baking soda, butter & sugar.

Mix well

Add flour & baking pwder (already mixed)

Bake 45 mins at 350 - Makes 2 loafs

This is best left a few days before eating if you can wait that long LOL I like it spread with a healthy butter substitute..

I changed the ingredients a little & I admit I have a dandy wee electric machine to chop my fruits & nuts but here's what I did..

I added dried apples & used about 1 - 1 1/2 cups of chopped apple - this was too soft to use in my nifty chopper so used a knife & the old fashioned chopping board method. I put them on the stove with a little water - enough so that the apple absorbed the water & became nice & plump & there was no water left.

I also added about a cup of finely chopped pecans.

I replaced the butter with olive oil

I only used 2/3 cup of sugar

I used whole wheat flour not white

What you get is a healthy treat loaded with MUFAs

I started making my own bread again earlier this year & found a recipe on line for making Sourdough & my 'bug' has been going for 7 or 8 months now - it took me a couple of trys to get it going right so don't be discouraged if your first attempt doesn't work, just roll up your sleeves & try again..

I use the basic white - for bread- flour but use 1/2 white & 1/2 rye flour for my bread & add NO sugar & only 1 tspn of salt & of course I use olive oil instead of butter. I also sprout about a half a cup of either wheat berries or rye berries to add at the same time I add the sourdough mix to the flour. I start the sprouts a couple of days before I do my bread making so that they are just at the soft stage where the leaves are forming & YUMMMMMM..

Joe snapped a pic the other day while I was kneading my bread so I'll share it with you.

Sunday, September 21, 2008

Sunday update

Update on Nancydoll

She's getting there & still smiling thru all the poking she's getting in the process. I gave her a crystal (2mm) ear-ring to add a bit of BLING.

As I bead this doll, I have my sister much in my thoughts.. Nancy used to be a hair stylist & does Ballroom Dancing & she made her own costumes for that. She is a very accomplished Woman & always looks good. She power walks to keep fit & her dancing also helps to keep her slim & flexible

She is on extended holiday near Perth, in Western Australia, helping her DIL out with the children, while Phil (my nephew) gets settled in a new job out in a mining town a million miles from nowhere...

Saturday, September 13, 2008

The Eyeball story for Denise

Well last year an online friend (who is also a beader, fancy that!) sent me a box of goodies for my birthday, just because.. So this year I repaid the compliment & now it's a snowball because she sent me another box this year as well & the eye ball is from that.

Kelly tells me that she felted it then realized it would fit perfectly in a walnut shell & volia, a pin cushion or a needle cushion in this case, because that's what I use it for...

Kelly has included carefully chosen beads in size 8, 11 & 15 so that I can bead the beanie bear, as well as several faces & other interesting bits & pieces. The beautiful purple button on Nancy is from this package too..

Denise don't you LOVE those orange leaves in the front of the picture, oh & isn't that green & white doll magnificent! She took my breath away when I first saw her...

Thank you Kelly, I hope we get to meet in person some day!!

Friday, September 12, 2008

Denise's Dare

Denise dared me to show my beading table, so here it is... I use a TV tray with vellux as my mat - mine is from 'Beading at the Beach' Denise, is yours?

So here is a pic taken today with Nancy smiling as she awaits more beads, did I tell you that purple has always been Nancy's favorite colour? Well it is..

As you can see the tray is upside down, I sit where Nancy's head points.. There are Ott-lites both sides of where I sit & my Bead Nest (as Joe calls it) is on my left & there is low table on my right both full of beads so once I am sitting down I don't have to move, it is all at my fingertips..

I can't explain the tiny 8 ball on my tray, it's something Joe put there, as is the map of New Zealand which he cut out to show me how it didn't fit into California twice as I'd told him.. I pointed out that the maps were 2 different sizes LOL so of course I went to Google to find out for sure & YES I was right.. Don't you love it when you're right!!!

September BJP

OK this is it, no really, I mean it...

My theme this year is 'The Women in my life' & starting out for September is my oldest sister Nancy, who turned 66 this month.. Happy Birthday Nancy dear!

Nancy is now the matriarch of our family as we lost our dear Mother last December

I used the freezer paper method to transfer Nancy to plain white fabric & treated it so that the ink would never smudge (at least I sure hope it won't) I learnt a few things in the process - don't we always - Like fiddling with the contrast to make the picture darker so that you can actually see it when it is printed out LOL

My pages are 'dolls' that are 6" tall & fit into a milk bottle lid, which will be weighted before the doll is glued into it. I plan to use the Women in my family, including my dear Mother & a few special friends to make my 12 doll pages

This is my progress so far....

I have to tell you that when I told Joe (dh) that I was going to paint the milk bottle lid black, he informed me that it is not possible as the paint wouldn't stick.. Well telling me that something won't work is like a dare, so I Mod Podged the edge of the lid & then painted it & guess what? It worked LOL

Thursday, September 4, 2008

Take #1

Well my first idea for my pages failed miserably LOL & here I was thinking I had it all planned ha ha haaa

So it's kinda back to the drawing board for me & on with the thinking cap again

Wish me luck...

Take #1

Saturday, August 30, 2008

Sea Shells

Final page for the 2007 -2008 BJP

This one took some doing, as I posted earlier I had done a Paua shell planning to use it for the month of May BUT it was too big for the frames I have, so it was back to the drawing board.

I had a block as far as what to do for my last page & with it being summer I ended up spending lots of time in the garden & avoided my beading table because of my lack of ideas - yeah don't ya hate these empty spaces when it comes to beading ideas LOL

I did all kinds of things to avoid beading, even cleaning up my craft room, which looked like a tornado had hit it & in doing so, I found some delightful fabric I had got while down in New Zealand earlier this year. It featured a Paua shell along with a Mussel & a Kina or Sea Urchin & another shell in colour with the rest of the shells in sepia colours. I embroidered the 4 coloured shells & this is the result

I have to say it is not my favorite of this series but hey I still think it rocks so that's what counts, right?

I still don't know why my pictures won't open to full size but you can check out a larger picture here

Tuesday, July 1, 2008

Mother & Dad

I just got a birthday gift to out do all gifts. Tucked into my birthday card from my sister Isabell was a photo of Mother & Dad dancing, taken back in 1967.

They both look so happy, it made me cry when I saw the picture..

I miss you both more than words can say & I hope you are dancing together again now..

Saturday, June 28, 2008

One more page for the BJP

I have finished the June '07 page finally - I started this one planning to totally encrust my pages but found the size daunting so there it sat taunting me for the next 11 months LOL I finally cut out the piece I had beaded & attached it to another piece of fabric, as I started beading around it I realized it was an sea anemone & so.... The Portrait of a Sea Anemone was born

I also had it in my mind to bead a Paua shell (black lipped abalone) for my final page BUT...... It ended up too big for my little frames that I am using to display my pages -grrrrrr

So it is back to the drawing board for my final page. Plus, now what do I do with a beaded Paua shell? LOL A friend suggested a tiny mermaid to sit in the shell & yes that could happen but time will tell, eh?

Back side covered with 'Paua Shell' fabric from New Zealand

My mind is a blank as what else to do for my last BJP, so I have been playing with beaded beads, which I will share pics of as soon as I get some pictures of them

Friday, June 6, 2008

Tagged for a Meme

I have been tagged by Arline & Cyn in this Meme, so here goes..

1. What was I doing 10 years ago?

I was living in Asuncion, Paraguay & teaching English as a 2nd Language at a British Language Institute. It was the experience of a lifetime for me, as I not only experienced a totally different culture from my own & learnt a new language, I also made some wonderful friends from all over the world (I am still in touch with many of them)

I'd been doing bead embroidery for a while & had also taught myself peyote stitch from a book so of course I was beading in my spare time.

2. What are 5 things on my to do list for today (need not be in order)?

1. Fix the tension on my sewing machine
2. Water the plants in the garden shed
3. Mount my June (yes June 07) BJP on the back board & get it in its frame
4. Work on my May BJP page (the last one & it's almost done)
5. Price a bunch of things for next weekend's Garage Sale

3. Snacks that I enjoy.

an apple - dried fruit - chocolate

4. Things I would do if I were a billionaire.

Stop worrying about money - ha ha haa that's a given, isn't it?
Set my children up with the home & business of their choice
Give all of my grandchildren a college education
Become a philantrapist & hire a bunch of my friends to help me find worthy causes
Buy a tropical island for bead/art retreats & have fun with all my creative friends

5. Places I have lived.

New Zealand - born & raised there
Australia - my dear daughter still lives there
Asuncion, Paraguay, South America
Pacific Coast, Washington, USA

6. Jobs I have had.

Varied office assistant & sale's type jobs
Primary Producer/Banana Grower
English Language Teacher
Mother, the most rewarding job of all

7. Peeps I want to know more about.

Sassy Sharon


I've notified my bloggy friends of their tags & hopefully they will want to play too.

Saturday, May 17, 2008

Round Robin Beaded Doll

Back in late 2004, I was part of a wonderful Retreat called Beadin' on the Beach.

Several of us started a Beaded Doll Round Robin - sadly there were many life changing upheavals over the next threee & a half years which meant the dolls got stuck here & there instead of moving on but life happens & most of the dolls have made it home.

My dolly, 'Dragonfly Dreamer -Bonnie Blue' arrived home last week & here she is in all her glory & beads.

Thank you to all of my dear friends who worked on my dolly, I will treasure her always as a special memory of that wonderful weekend beadin' on the beach...

As usual my pictures won't open so you can see the pics somewhat larger here

Thursday, May 8, 2008

Mr Natural's Etsy store

My husband has opened an Etsy store where you can buy some odds & ends from his stash of his funky 'ART' supplies as well as some of his Steam Punk/Assemblabe Art. Check it out here

Here's Joe with his prize winning piece from the Peninsula Arts Association Spring Show last month. He had such a grand time making this 'Raygun' there are lights that flash & when you look in the tiny 'portholes' you can see the 'motor' working with all kinds of things spinning & moving. It truely is a work of art!!

Tuesday, May 6, 2008

Two more BJP pages finished

This is August's page which is titled Nudibranch looking for lunch

September's page is a Pink Jelly Fish

I am finally catching up on the pages I missed out last year ~ whew! Only two more to go & less than a month to finish this year's BJP out in time but I know I can do it

You can see my pages enlarged somewhat here

Sunday, April 20, 2008

April Under the Sea BJP

One more page done for my Beaded Journal Project, this time it is a Green Turtle diving through the clear ocean waters for some tasty morsles that inhabit the coral reef.

I still have a couple to do to finish the whole year but I'm working at getting them done ASAP

You can see a larger picture of this one here

Sunday, March 23, 2008

Under the Sea BJP for March

I have finished another page for the Beaded Journal project, this was another fun piece to work on

As usual I cannot get my pictures to open so you can see a bigger picture here

Sunday, March 16, 2008

More on my mask

I am slowly making progress with my mask. I hope to get a decent amount done over the next day or two but time will tell, eh
You can see supersized pictures here

Tuesday, March 4, 2008

Pay It Forward

I have read about Pay It Forward on several blogs & I have always been too late to jump aboard but that changed today when I found an open spot for me to jump into @

It pretty simple, the first 3 people who comment on my blog will receive something handmade from me, if they in turn will do the same thing... See the rules below.

Pay it forward rules: I will send a handmade gift (something beaded) to the first 3 people who leave a Comment on my blog requesting to join this PIF exchange (and email me their mailing address), and who make the same pledge on their own blogs. I don’t know what that gift will be yet and you may not receive it tomorrow or next week, but you will receive it within 365 days, that is my promise! The only thing you have to do in return is pay it forward meaning you will do the same for three people who comment on your posting on your blog.

Sunday, March 2, 2008

One more BJP page

Let's call this one January as I have a few months to catch up on, so I'm doing my darnedest ~ grin

This one is simple & uses some sliced shells that I found in one of the stores down here at the beach

I'm still having problems getting these pictures to open bigger when you click them so meanwhile, you can see this one supersized here

Thursday, February 28, 2008

February BJP finished

I have to thank the Lone Beader for this one, as her style of bead embroidery inspired me to try something similar. I used layers of felt to make the Mermaid & the fish stand out from the background fabric..

Here are a couple of progress pictures so you can see what I did, the top side of the Mermaid is about a 1/4 " thick and the lower side is flat, so hopefully I have achieved a 3D effect with her & the fish..

I'm not sure about the face of the mermaid but hey she does have a great head of hair LOL

Her tail is ruffled with sculptural bead weaving, this last picture is the most true to life colour I think.... Now onto the next one

You can see this picture enlarged at my webshots allbums as my pictures still won't open to larger images even tho they are HUGE :(

Thursday, February 14, 2008

More on the Mask Challenge

I recently started a new job & life got turned upside down for a bit & I am now working 40 hrs a week BUT I am still getting some beading done, which helps keep me sane in a crazy world ;9
I've got the theme for my mask worked out & have made a small start on the beading. I will show some teasers pictures of my mask as I go but I intend to keep my theme to myself for now, it is a challenge after all, right?
I decided to glue some polycotton fabric from on old sweatshirt over the felt, as I didn't like beading on the fuzz from the felt.....

I love these clear AB 11s - they have a wonderful rainbow effect, don't you think?

Monday, February 4, 2008

Under the Sea for December

I am beginning to feel like I am catching up at last & have December's page done & in its frame

I am really pleased with this one & was inspired to make the fabric 'tubes' by an article in the July '07 Quilting Arts magazine & some of the lovely polished Paua pieces I brought back from New Zealand last year were the perfect complement... I also added a Swarovski Starfish that I got at the Puget Sound Bead Fest last year but it sparkles so much it's hard to see clearly

The colour is not quite right, so I might try another picture with natural light & see what happens, meanwhile here's a detail shot as I am still having problems getting these pictures to open to a bigger pic - grr
I have made a good start on January's page as well, so hopefully I'll have caught up before May arrives

Sunday, January 20, 2008

Noverber BJP finshed at last

OK, so I really am running late but here it is with progress shots to show you how I did it

The Mermaid made with PC, hand painted & from a mold I made some time back, I bezzeled around her like you would a cab
As you can see, the yarn is being transformed into sea grass with the addition of beads
Now the fun part begins - embellishing!!
So, the little orange bit is going to be a fish..
But he is not what I wanted so back to the drawing board I go..
The final fish, I am much happier with this wee guy, he's done in peyote stitch
And so it is finished, it was hard to know when it was done, I could have kept going with this one for at least another week but you have to stop somewhere, right?

For some reason I cannot get the last two pictures to enlarge, so here are close ups - I hope you can see the detail clearly in them