Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Hardly a Working Stiff

At the beginning of the Summer, I decided to take on a part-time job to fill in the spaces in my bank account that the Big City Bumpkin wasn't reaching. Not surprisingly, it became my main source of income (the majority of my jewelry sales are right before Xmas). If this were some boring office job, I would be complaining... but it's anything but boring!

Yesterday I got to do some of the Halloween decorations, and it was a riot. I went for a "creepy hillbilly" theme, part Texas Chainsaw Massacre, part Deliverance -- being a hillbilly myself, I can get away with those kinds of generalizations, hehe

The view from the top is cool.

I'm taking today to make more of my Chicago flag pendants, which should be available this weekend. I hope y'all are having a good week, and if not a good week then a quick week. ;)

Monday, September 15, 2014

The Good News O-the-Day

Just when I was starting to think of Facebook, again, as useless for anything more than chat, this lil' nugget popped up while I was at work...

...and just like that, it turns out I will get to go "home" this year, and see my Momma and my Daddy, and my sister and her kids, and my friends, and the Blue Ridge Mountains, and the James River, and the TREES, and the wide open spaces, and the museums in DC, and the best ever chile rellenos at the Guad, and the red dirt, and that little log cabin house on the side of Route 29, and the Downtown Mall, and the Super Walmart (it's a spectacle, believe me).

This is gonna happen...
...and this glorious remnant of my childhood...
...and I'll probably get to drive past this place.
I don't know if y'all realize how redneck it's going to get up in here, but this country girl is ready to rock.

Yeah, like chillin' out on haystacks and sniffin' daisies,
and hangin' out on rocks and stuff.
Right now I'm just too excited to think clearly, which is why I'm instead jumping around like a 5-year-old hopped up on too much soda and cake. It's one thing when I've planned a trip for months and months, but this was such a last-minute surprise, and it's going to be a whirlwind tour, but I'm SO EXCITED I can hardly stand it!!

Saturday, September 13, 2014

Lovin' Autumn

So over the last few days, it's become obvious to me (although I really already knew) that I'm an Autumn person. To be fair, I get really excited about Summer too, but at least in Autumn you can be comfortable in the cool weather by throwing a sweater on, while being hot is a problem not as easily solved. So yeah, Autumn. :) I'm enjoying this very much.

I put the dogs in their pejammies last night, which was awfully cute and cozy, and then I made hot buttered rum, which was less cute but also very cozy.

Today I'm running down to Paperish Mess again, to drop off the magnolia slice keychains that I forgot in my bag last time I was there, and I'm looking forward to the walk in this cool weather. Sweatshirts and warm socks and maybe some tights if I'm feeling adventurous.

Magnolia Slice Keychains, available at Paperish Mess and in my Etsy shop

I hope you all have a lovely cool and cozy weekend!

Thursday, September 11, 2014

Gettin' Stuff Done

This morning when I woke up... it was suddenly Autumn. I spent a bit longer than usual snuggled up with my dogs under the blankets, but once I woke up I'll admit, I immediately wanted to put on a flannel shirt and buy a pumpkin spice latte. I submitted to the flannel, skipped the latte, and hoofed it down to Paperish Mess where I dropped off a few items at their lovely little store (I've said it before, and I'll say it again, if you haven't visited this little gem of a shop, you should), but also forgot a few items (magnolia slice keychains) in my bag. Oops.

But I really enjoyed walking around in the substantially cooler weather. I'm sure in a few months I'll be kicking myself for ever thinking that, but today it felt good. I found a few pretty spots along the way back, and it was a great answer to my homesickness about how much I really do love it here in Chicago.

This little window view, with all of it's books, was a heartbreaker.
A perfect porch.
This gorgeous painted door overlooks someone's spilled makeup bag.
It turns out, orange and mint green are a perfect color combination.

Now I'm enjoying cinnamon tea spiked with Evan Williams Apple Orchard in my oh-so-cozy living room, and hoping my "real" workday tomorrow goes by quickly.

Thursday, September 4, 2014

Summertime Sadness

How did Summer slip away so quickly this year? Well, it's still hot outside, but the feeling of Summer has definitely left, and while I'm not ready to don my scarves and sip my warm drinks yet, its about time I get into the mindset that Autumn is upon me.

I've been having a bit of a hard time lately, a little bit of homesickness mixed with general restlessness and a tad of "is this all there is", punctuated by moments of absolutely wonderful beauty in the most unexpected places -- it's keeping me on my toes, to say the least.

Funny that, as things pick up at work, it's paralleled by things picking up for my lil' jewelry business -- things are going to be inordinately busy, soon, but maybe I need that to snap myself out of this little funk I'm trying to get into?

The studio will be open this Friday, for First Friday at the Flat Iron Arts Building, and I'm eager to see how my little rearrange of the space will go over. I moved the whole "living room" into another room, and the workspace into the studio where the couch/tv/bookshelves used to be. I'm hoping that in the future, this will really help with having more space for different artists to show their work (if they're interested) in the gallery, and it will also give me more space for when I eventually launch my other project (still top secret, of course).

The new living space (complete with napping dog) -- I've cleaned it up a bit since taking this shot, and the couch is covered in plaid blankets to make me feel like I'm living in a cozy cabin in Wyoming, or something like that.

The funny this is that my little rearrangement has made my living space so completely cozy and lovely, that I'm a lot less motivated to actually go into the other room and work on things in there... so hopefully at some point, having the studio open will kick me into gear.

So on that note, I have to leave my little cozy space to go to work, but hopefully some of you will be able to drop by this Friday, and I'll be happy to show off all the work I've been doing in here. I'll be dropping off more necklaces at Paperish Mess towards the middle of next week, so if you can't catch me here at the studio, you can definitely find my most popular pieces in stock at their sweet little shop.

Wednesday, July 9, 2014

Ike's Heart

As anyone who follows my Twitter or Facebook probably knows by now, I'm trying to raise money to help my little buggy-buddy Ike get treatment for his heart condition. We're not even sure exactly what's wrong yet, although unfortunately it is looking like congestive heart failure. His coughing has been getting worse every week, which is the result of his heart pumping out too much blood when he becomes excited, and the blood backing up into his lungs. Because of all of the bills, the rent, student loan payments, etc. in my life, I haven't been able to save up for the treatments that Ike needs to determine what medicines will be able to help him (if that's even an option), so I started a fundraiser on

I had no idea that my friends, family, and even some complete strangers, would rally around Ike in the way that they have. It's only the first day of the fundraiser, and we are already nearly halfway to our goal for his treatment. This is almost unbelievable to me, and I can't thank all of you enough. From the absolute depths of my heart, and from Ike's little heart too -- THANK YOU!

I'll be making the first appointment for him as soon as tomorrow, and hopefully that will put us well on our way to finding out what exactly is wrong, and what we can do to help him and keep him around as long as possible. I love this little guy with all of my heart, and I just can't imagine life without him. Thank you so much to all of you who are making it possible for me to keep my buggy-buddy happy and healthy!

Sunday, June 29, 2014

Slow Summer

Summer, the double-edged sword -- it means warm weather, long bike rides, sitting lazily in the Lake, but it also means slower sales, and really expensive markets that I can't necessarily afford. Last year I really went all-out, doing a market practically every weekend, and in the end it was really tiring, and I still just barely scratched by until the pickup in sales pre-Christmas. This year I've only done a handful of markets, opting instead to try to sell my baseball pieces outside of Wrigley Field (which really means sitting with my friends in the sunshine), keeping up with a few small shops that sell my jewelry, and working my hours at Ragstock for fill-in money. It's unfortunate though that Summer, full of fun stuff to do, ends up being the lean time, and I make the majority of my income in the Winter when I want nothing more than to stay inside.

That being said... I really want to go camping right now, but in Chicago, even camping takes more money than I'm willing to spend -- gas, food, renting a camping spot. It's a far cry from when I lived in Virginia, and I could drive half an hour down the Coal Road to a great spot for hiking, swimming, and (free!) camping. I guess you could also say I'm a little homesick these days.

I've been having a lot of fun this past week, riding my bike a lot more, and doing things I would normally either put off, or work through, but it doesn't take away the occasional longing for an open red-dirt road, or a mountain to climb, or a swimming hole.

Here are some of my favorite pieces for this Summer, and I'll raise my glass in the hope that y'all are enjoying these hot, sunny days!

Happy Pride!
Gay Pride Necklace

Reminds me of home.
Magnolia Wood Keychain

Colorful and Pretty
Floating Lace Wall Hanging (Dream Catcher)