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It’s a quarter to one. In the morning. I’ve got a lot on my plate this summer. Early in the summer (don’t even get me started on how the summer has flown by) I decided I had PLENTY of time to take on the kids being home, teaching some kids yoga classes in addition to my normal yoga teaching and practicing, plus take an (awesome) earring class AND a (wonderful) business building course designed specifically for artists. Piece of cake, right? sigh.

True confession: I’m behind on EVERYTHING. And I felt it tonight. Or last night rather, right before it turned into this morning.  I listened to Module 3 of the business class (even though we’re technically on Module 4 but now I’m only ONE lesson behind). Let me say Tonya’s class is SO full of an incredible amount of useful information. Which is precisely my problem. After I listened to the class: I immediately went to where I always go mindset-wise: I’ll NEVER catch up; it’s too much; why oh why am I doing this, et cetera, ad nauseum. At the end of every class Tonya reminds us to GO TAKE ACTION. So I did. I quit whining and made a mind map for all my major projects; that way I can actually see what needs to be done and TAKE ACTION. And then I went and made something (well, sort of).

A major component of the earring class is drawing a bead on wire. (for those of you that don’t make jewelry: you heat the end of a wire up until it just about melts, the metal draws up into a bead. Please hold & I’ll show you what I mean). So I cut lengths of sterling silver, copper and bronze wire. Turned on the torch and trial & error’d my way into feeling proficient at drawing a bead on all three types of wire.

These may look like little burnt sticks. They are, in fact,  full of the potential to turn into the hoops (and a few other types of earrings) you may have seen in this post.  See those little tiny balls on the ends of the wires? That’s what I was practicing. I’ve got to say, I’m not nervous about that particular task anymore.

I don’t know why it’s so hard for this procrastinator to realize that just taking even the tiniest bit of action makes me feel better and not so overwhelmed. And now I have lots of earrings to work on. And I’m feeling rather full of myself; I’m even thinking I might LIKE this take action stuff. I certainly feel better about a whole mess of things than I did a few hours ago. With that, I’m off to sleep, I’m going to take a yoga class in the early morning. I feel SO productive (what a fabulous feeling to end the day)!  😉

Sweet dreams!

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Happy July!  This summer I’ve been taking an online course to learn to make some new earrings. The class is taught by Deryn Mentock and she is an AWESOME teacher. I’ll also be taking a class (in person) from her next March at Adorn Me! 2012. I canNOT wait! For now, have a look at a couple of the earrings I’ve made:

These hoops are forged sterling silver. I made every bit of them, *including* the ear wires (confession: after working through some of the lessons in the class, I’m chagrined that I haven’t always made my own ear wires. That will be changing.). It always amazes me that I forget how much I love hammering metal.

Aren’t these lovely? Same hoops as above but I’ve added a metal clay medallion and some very pale Aquamarines.  I’ve got lots of ideas for embellishing these hoops. Lucky for me, there was a bead show in town this weekend. Check out my haul:

I wanted garnets and I was so happy to find some in the perfect deep, deep red that I adore. Also there’s some labradorite that’s going to be lovely paired with black leather for a wrap bracelet. See all the ‘white’ beads? It’s faceted moonstone! I usually see smooth moonstone & it’s kinda, meh, to me. But I fell in love with the faceted variety; the faceting highlights the colors & lights in the stone.  You’ll be seeing more of it in my designs. Yes. Those are skulls. I haven’t figured out *exactly* what I want to do with them but I was drawn to them, so now I own them. I’m really looking forward to working with all this loveliness!

Sidenote from the bead show #1: If you’ve ever seen my arms, you’d know that I’m NOT the customer that needs the how-to-build-a-collection lecture.

Sidenote from the bead show #2: Many of you have asked me about what to use to clean your silver jewelry. My first choice is my tumbler but since I know that’s not an option for most of you here’s my second choice:

I’ve used this biodegradable metal cleaner for years & years. It’s from that booth that’s always at any kind of show (Home & Garden, Holiday Markets, etc) & they offer to clean a ring for you. Both of their products are great but I was more interested in the metal cleaner this trip. It really works well, it’s safe for your fine & sterling silver jewelry & it lasts forever. If it ever dries out just add water & it’s ready to go! They also told me if you put some in a jar with water, soak your silver overnight, it’ll be shiny by morning. Fabulous! Email me if you’re interested in a jar ($10) and I’ll ship it to you. Or later this summer…

You can place an order for it ON MY WEBSITE! I’m [this] close to actually having a real, live, working website WITH a shopping cart! I spent time today loading the earring category. Really! My goal is to have it up and running by my birthday. That gives me just over a month. Stay tuned. Of course, I’ll be mentioning it EVERYWHERE once it’s ready.

Hope you’re having a great summer. We’re having a hot (normal), dry (not so normal) one here in Houston but I’ll take the heat over the chilly any day! It’s going by so quickly, the kids will be starting school in no time. Stay in touch, say hello anytime!