Thanks For Stopping By!

Sidewing Creations Bonanza Booth

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

I want to take a moment in my blogging to tell you that I'm a member of the ONE Campaign. You have probably heard of it. Many famous people from all walks of life are members and from different sides of the political aisle. Its mission is to stamp out Global Poverty and AIDS which is a major cause of poverty. I was asked today to sign a petition as part of the ONE Campaign and I agreed with it and signed it. Here is part of that email request:

Only two questions about global poverty have been asked in the history of modern presidential debates, going back to Kennedy-Nixon in 1960. That’s less than 1% of all questions asked.
To change that shockingly low figure, ONE is launching a new campaign to get “Just ONE Question” about the fight against global poverty asked at the 2008 presidential debates.
The first debate at the University of Mississippi at Oxford, Mississippi, will focus on foreign policy and is only 10 days away. Take action now by sending the message below to debate moderator Jim Lehrer.


At the presidential debate, please ask John McCain and Barack Obama just ONE question about their plans to fight global poverty.

If you would like to learn more and add your name to the petition to Jim Lerher, go here:
http://www.one.org/debates/?rc=debatestaf

Getting on to another subject, I am currently taking stock of my beads and other materials. I'm starting to work on some Christmas projects, both for selling and for gifts. I have to keep reminding myself not to get too many projects going. If I do, I will just get too overwhelmed and then nothing gets done!!

Currently, I'm making a set of mother-daughter necklaces with Santa Claus beads as the focal point. I'm going to contribute them, as a set, to my church's craft fair in November. I'm also making Hang-Its, for my shop and for the church craft fair. They are fairly easy to make in that I can make on in about an hour. I just finished a very beautiful necklace that is just right for the holidays, but is great all year. It has dark cherry red, glass beads with a slight aurora borealis finish to them. I paired these with round gold beads with largish link chain in between each grouping of beads. As soon as I get pictures, I'll post them here. I just don't know whether or not to sell it in my shop or donate it to church!

That's what's going on here in my little corner of the world! I hope your corner is busy and fulfilled!

Thanks for stopping by!
Wendy

Saturday, September 13, 2008

Of blogs, beading and anniversaries!

I've been out visiting some of the blogs I have listed below. There are so many more that I wish I could list. I do add to the list when I find one that is really special. I enjoy reading what other bloggers have to say. Some are very eloquent and other very down to earth. Its very different as you go from one to another. I think that's why I enjoy it so much!

I've been doing a lot of beading lately, but most of it is going to be donated to my church's craft fair for the Women's Group table. I would love to have my own table, but there just isn't enough hours in a day for me to bead that much. Besides, I'm working on some Christmas presents too!!

Hubby and I finally have plans in place for our 39th wedding anniversary in October. We are driving to Montana, just outside Glacier National Park. We will be staying at a very comfortable inn, The Izak Walton Inn. It has no phones, no tv, and it sits back from the road in the woods. Last time we were there we had bear sitings! Not that we don't have them here in Colorado, just not as many as close by. We are going to go for long walks, do some geocaching, visit the Park again and just be together without interruption! Wow! I wish we could leave now!!!!

Thanks for stopping by!
Wendy

Thursday, September 11, 2008

Doing a bit of catching-up!

I don't know where the time goes! I think I'll blog every day, but the days fly by. Hubby and I did get to Mt. Evans and Echo Lake. We had a wonderful time. The weather was beautiful for it. We set out to find 4 geocaches and found all 4 of them. Then we spent the night in Central City and did a little gambling. We won some and lost some and in the end we broke even. All-in-all it was a nice get away.

I've been making quite a bit of jewelry recently too. I haven't put much on my Etsy.com shop, though. I'm saving some of it for the craft fair at church that is scheduled for November 8th. I'd like to take a table, but I really don't think I'll have enough items. I'll probably just donate my pieces to the women's craft table. That's what I did last year.

On a brighter note, I have sold a few pieces recently. Mostly my smaller, less expensive items. I'm just glad to be getting noticed a bit. I do wish someone would take notice of my more expensive pieces. I work hard on them and I have improved so much. Most people who see my work "in person" like it and buy it. I'm still struggling with the pictures, but those are improving also.

I joined another etsy group the other day, Christian Artists Street Team. I've introduced myself on the team forum thread twice. It seems hard to get yourself "heard" there. I think I'm going to have to try to introduce myself on their regular message board. Maybe its less hectic on that board.

I really like the socializing on etsy overall. For me, its another way to meet people, though its not quite the same as being with them. I like the people and my Lupus keeps me somewhat home bound or at least limited in my socializing. Most of the people I've met on etsy are very friendly and helpful. Its a bit like taking a walk in a neighborhood.

Thanks for stopping by my neighborhood!
Wendy

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Blogs, Etsy.com, My Shop Sale, Geocaching

Today I've been visiting other blogs that are written by my fellow etsy.com shop owners. There are a lot of them out there!! Someone posted a thread in the etsy forums about being new to blogging and sharing blog sites. Since I don't get a whole lot of traffic, I thought it might be a good idea to share my site and look at some of the other's sites. It would be impossible to look at ALL of the ones that got listed, but I did look at quite a few. I added some of them to my list here and I added two new shops to my list of Favorite Etsy Shops. I hope you will check out both my blog list and my Etsy Shop list.

The blogs I have chosen are all different, though many are related to etsy.com shop owners, they offer insights into business, crafts, personal thoughts, etc. Also, not all of the blogs are from etsy.com shop owners so you might find other interesting things to read about.

The shops I have chosen for my favorites list include those I have bought from and those I have not. They include etsy.com shop owners who have been helpful, unusually friendly and kind, carry a product that I find interesting or unique or are a shop that I have bought from and find to be a dependable owner with a quality product.

Currently I am having an END OF AUGUST SALE!!! All items that are on sale are listed in my sale section with their sale price. Original prices are listed within the description area. The sale ENDS at MIDNIGHT August 31, 2008. At that time the prices will return to their original amounts. SO DON'T WAIT!! HURRY IN!!

On an all together different subject, tomorrow hubby and I are heading out for a drive to the mountains. I think we will head up Mt. Evans and maybe picnic at Echo Lake before or after our trip up depending on what time we get started. NO, we are not hiking. My Lupus prevents too much strenuous activity at this time. We will be driving all the way to the top of the big Fourteener. For those who don't know, Mt. Evans rises to 14,000 feet and is one of several peaks that do in Colorado, which are known as the Fourteeners. Echo Lake is near the entrance road to the top and a picturesque place for walking, hiking and picnicking. We plan to do some geocaching on our way there. I have checked the geocaching.com site yet to see what is in the Mt. Evans/Echo Lake area yet, but there is sure to be something. We are looking forward to a nice quiet and peaceful day together!

Don't forget to check out the sale in my shop!

Thanks for stopping by!
Wendy

Sunday, August 24, 2008

Sale In My Shop, Family News, Shout Out

Friday, my daughter turned 23 years old! When did that happen? Her husband of one year decided to throw her a birthday party because last year her birthday was kind of a "dud". His family never really celebrates birthdays and ours makes a big thing out of them. Her birthday fell right after their wedding and honeymoon. Even after being around us for a couple of years before they married, I guess he just didn't realize how important it was to her. This year he went all out! Only he turned it into a kids party with everything in a pink princess theme, napkins, streamers, tablecloth, paper plates, cups, etc. He couldn't surprise her completely, but he did surprise her with the decorations and he managed to get her best friend there. They haven't seen each other in six months due to work and college schedules. Any men reading this, he made such a hit with her, I can't even put it in words. She was so happy that he took the time and caring to put together a fun and funny birthday for her. It meant a lot to her.

As for my shop, I'm having an END OF AUGUST SALE! It Ends Midnight August 31, 2008! All Items in the Sale Will Return To Their Original Prices!! I currently have 11 items On Sale, earrings, bracelets, necklaces and sets. All are 20% off or more!!!!!! Don't Miss Out!!!!!

!!!!! SHOUT OUT !!!!!
for Goshen Girl
I haven't done a SHOUT OUT for awhile. I'd like to do a SHOUT OUT for a great etsy.com seller, Goshen Girl! She is a seller of handmade jewelry, lanyard badge holders, scrunchies, vintage items and she also carries hand tied flies by Cory. Her shop is at http://www.goshengirl.etsy.com/ What I really like about Goshen Girl outside of her shop, which is terrific, is her generosity to her fellow etsians. Goshen Girl started and runs a Promotion Thread on etsy that is a BNR (Buy and Replace) that is very active and friendly. I believe it stays active and friendly because she herself set the tone for it. Along with the BNR thread, she trys to acquire Treasury Slots to promote those who are on the thread! Goshen Girl is active, friendly and has a great shop! Why not check it out?
Thanks for Stopping By!
Wendy

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Relaxing Making My Jewelry

My company is gone and I've had time to rest. I picked up my trays of beads and started making jewelry again. It feels good too! I find that it can be very relaxing once I have a design set. I love the creating process of the design too, but its not as relaxing as actually making the piece.

Choosing the colors, choosing the types of beads is very satisfying and allows my creativity to really escape and run away. I often make jewelry that is bolder or brighter than I might wear myself. I think that in creating I am letting a bit of the "real me" out. Its the bolder, less conservative me that I haven't always allowed out. That's what is so great about art and I do consider jewelry making art, you can let yourself really go with what's inside you. The design process really wakes me up.



On the other hand, once the design is laid out, I relax. I feel somehow released and I just sit back in a way as I put the pieces of my design together. My mother, who paints, calls it putting my sketch to canvass. Its somewhat true. I make little adjustments as I put my design together and find I don't like it as much once strung together. My mother makes adjustments to her painting as she finds the painting doesn't come together quite like the sketch. I don't duplicate many of my jewelry pieces, so most are unique and one of a kind. I seem to have developed a kind of style, though I do think I'm still growing. Here's one of the latest additions to my etsy.com shop:


This necklace is make with Black Diamond Swarovski Crystals, Jet Swarovski Crystal Rondells, 14k gold plated beads and chain. It just seemed to come alive as I handmade it. I hope someone will find an elegant event to wear it to!
Thanks for stopping by!
Wendy

Friday, August 15, 2008

Company is Gone and Now its back to My Etsy.com Shop!

My company left today. Love them as I do, it was time to get my house back! It is so much quieter!!!! I must be getting old or something. I used to love the hustle and bustle of having lots of people around me, but not any more! Now I like the peace and quiet of just a few people.

That being said, it is time to get back to my etsy shop!! What a disappointment to find that in the last week I've had few visits and no sales! =( I have been more active on the blogs and more active on the etsy.com threads. I've been promoting my jewelry and my shop here. I think most of my pieces are good works. I hope that doesn't sound too self promoting. I like my own work. There are pieces that I have made that I am not satisfied with and I'm sure that I will always make some that turn out that way.

I believe that jewelry making is an art and as such, beauty is in the eye of the beholder. I see art sometimes and can't understand why others like it and I see art sometimes and find it extremely beautifully when others don't. Whether or not I sit at a canvass choosing paint colors or at my table choosing beads, just how each flow together on canvass or jewelry wire makes no difference. Jewelry is my art. Jewelry is my form of expression. I truly hope when you see my jewelry pieces, you will understand the joy it brings me to create it and in return, I hope it will bring you joy.

Thanks for stopping by!
Wendy

Tuesday, August 5, 2008

A short note to update

The heat has finally let up and it is raining!!!!!!! It is a comfortable 80 degrees. So glad to get back to normal temps and be able to live and work normally again.

It all happened with good timing for this household. We have unexpected company arriving Friday and Sunday. Two cousins and a brother arrive first and then my son's girlfriend arrives Sunday. We'll have a houseful for a few days. It should be fun and exhausting. I just hope that it doesn't cause my Lupus to flare up!

I guess I won't be writing much for the next week or two, but at least you will know why. Please post a hello if you drop in. Check out my favorite blog sites and etsy shops if you can. There are also links to my shop by click on the banner at the top or the mini pictures at the bottom. I'll be back as soon as I can to tell you all the news about the family, geocaching, Lupus, and who is doing great at etsy.com!

Thanks for stopping by!
Wendy

Saturday, August 2, 2008

Colorado Hot Weather, Geocaching, Jewelry Design Set

The weather here in Colorado has been breaking records for being HOT!! Its been in the 90's for weeks and today it was over 100 degrees! For those of us who love living here, even we are having a hard time appreciating the beauty of it through the heat of the day. It does take its toll no matter where you live when the temperatures are this hot.



The last few days I have been spending time trying to make my etsy.com shop more visible. This isn't an easy thing to do. I have change some of my descriptions and titles of my jewelry pieces to include key words. I changed my profile to be more descriptive of myself and hopefully more memorable. I added the address to my blog to my shop. That sort of thing.



The next thing I did was read some more business tips. Not that I really want to make a full time business out of my jewelry shop, but I would like to sell a few pieces from time to time. It would be nice to sell enough to off set the cost of my beads. I mean buying semi precious gemstones and Swarovski crystals does get expensive! Anyway, I did find some more information and I went to a few business type blogs that were mentioned to read those. I think it helped me out some, though my hubby and I have had a business before and much of it was done via Internet. This is just very different in how to "advertise" the business. I'm learning though.



Speaking of hubby, we also spent time this week on our new venture. I wish I could share more of it with you, but it is still in the top secret folder. We spoke to a few people who were able to give us some good information and then we made contact with that all important person - the money man! We will be seeing a potential investor on Tuesday! Its very exciting for us! Can't wait until I can share it with you!!!



We haven't had a chance to do any geocaching again. Its been too hot to do any in our area and we haven't been able to go up into the mountains where its a bit cooler. As much fun as we have with it, we don't have a lot of time for it, but we're going to try to make more time if our venture works out.



Before I say good-bye, I'd like to show you my most recent posting to my etsy.com shop. Remember you can get to it by clicking on my banner above!!!

Jewelry Design Set in Multiple Colors of Swarovski Crystals and Swirled Glass Beads
by Sidewing Creations
The glass beads are a swirl of predominately blue, green, black and brown, with hints of red and yellow in some of the beads. There are 6mm Bicone Jet Swarovski Crystals and 4mm Swarovski Crystals in each of the following colors, Montana Sapphire Blue, Chrysolite and Crystal Clear



Theses pictures just don't look as good here as they do in the original or even in my shop! I hope you'll check it out sometime soon!
Thanks for stopping by!
Wendy

Saturday, July 26, 2008

Getting Away & Geocaching, Finding Other Bloggers, Saturday Night Promotions

This week hubby and I had a chance to do something fun! We went to the mountains to get away from home and the usual problems of life and did some geocaching. What is geocaching you ask? Simply put, geocaching is treasure hunting using a GPS unit. The size of the treasure chests vary from micro, about the size of a 35mm film canister or smaller, to much larger. Some people do it for the treasures and some people do it for the hunt. I think both can be fun. This hobby can be done alone, with a partner, as a team, with children and has varying skill levels. You can get very involved with lots of people online and off. There are group meetings, etc. Or you can choose to participate quietly and just do the hunts and not be so involved. The choices make it great for all types of people and personalities to enjoy! We found quite a few caches (treasures) on this outing. It gave us a chance to do a bit of moderate hiking, since that day I was feeling pretty good, have a nice lunch out, and be away from "it all". Geocaching is not very expensive once you purchase the geocaching unit. Learn all you need to know at http://www.geocaching.com or click on the geocaching icon on the right. This is the official site of geochaching.

I was on etsy.com earlier today. One of the threads was for exchanging blog links. I did add a few new ones to my list and a couple of new etsy stores to my favorite stores list. I hope you will take time to check out both lists. I think you'll find some great shops for your Christmas shopping or other holiday and special occasion shopping pleasure. The blogs I have listed are quite different, I think, from each other. They add variety to life!

I haven't posted any new items to my etsy shop today, but I do hope to get listed early on the SNS - Saturday Night Specials list on the Promotions Thread. I'll be offer 15% off of your total bill in my shop!! Please check it out!

Thanks for stopping by!
Wendy

Thursday, July 24, 2008

Family life, Etsy.com shop, Lupus, A Shout OUT

Things in my household seem to be a little better. Hubby definitely has contract work coming his way by the first week of August, so fears of not having money to pay bills has become less of a problem. The same company that is going to contract him, is planning to hire him, but there are some details to work out, because they want to open a new division in our area and they want him to run the place. We won't feel totally better until everything is in place and all the paperwork is done! We're a bit edgy in that area.

We've been working on a project that would make us our own business owner and we are moving ahead with that. Since it doesn't interfere with what hubby would be doing with the company that wants to hire him, we decided to move to the next stage. It won't cost us anything to continue, so why not? We can always drop out before putting a bunch of money into it if we feel it is too much for us to take on with hubby doing the other job.

I'm still working at making my jewelry shop on etsy more known. I've done some more research into that and now I have to take some time to implement it. I think I can do it without putting so much time into it that I'm not really making any money on my jewelry. I don't really expect to get rich on it, but I don't want to lose money either. I think of my jewelry as a form of art. I don't make it to be "in fashion". I make whatever I "see" as I'm working with the beads. That may be why I sell more when people see my jewelry in person. I don't think the pictures do it much justice. Here is a simple pair of earrings that I thought would sell rather quickly, but haven't. These pictures show better in my etsy shop than here.






I call these earrings BLACK-EYED JONQUIL EARRINGS WITH GOLD because they are made of 6mm round and 4mm bicone Jonquil AB Swarovksi crystals and black rondells set with Crystal AB Swarovski crystals. I thought of the flowers, Black-Eyed Susans and Jonquils, then mixed the names. The earhooks, headpins and links are 14k goldplated.


The other thing that surprises me about my etsy shop is my CHARITY section. Nothing in it has sold. I sell for 2 charities right now. The first one is the ELCA WORLD HUNGER APPEAL and the second one is THE LUPUS FOUNDATION OF AMERICA, INC. There are links to these charities in the right hand column under My Favorite Charities, so you can learn more about them. I give 100% of the sale, less the shipping, to the charities. I've had lots of views, but no takers. I had really hoped this would be a way I could give to these groups and draw some attention to them. I'm not sure if I have even drawn much real attention to them, but I hope so!

Speaking of Lupus, the Lupus Foundation has an Advocacy group which needs people's help all the time. Two things that they are working hard on right now are these:

Number ONE

Lupus REACH Amendments
The Lupus Research, Education, Awareness, Communications, and Healthcare (REACH) Amendments legislation, S.1359/H.R.1192, was introduced in the Senate by Senator Patty Murray (D-WA) and Senator Robert Bennett (R-UT), and in the House of Representatives by Congressman Kendrick Meek (D-FL) and Congresswoman Ileana Ros-Lehtinen (R-FL).
We are working to get this bill passed in the 110th Congress. We are pleased that we have bi-partisan support with 84 cosponsors in the House and 16 in the Senate. The LFA government relations staff has been actively meeting with potential new cosponsors.
Go to our Legislative Action Center to contact your Members of Congress! (http://capwiz.com/lfa/home/) You can learn more details about this bill, find out if your members of congress are on board with it and, if not, email them to join co-sponsorship.

Number TWO

Ban of Current Incandescent Light Bulbs
On December 19, 2007, President Bush signed the Energy Independence and Security Act of 2007 (Public Law No: 110-140). Under the new law, all light bulbs must use 25% to 30% less energy than today’s light bulbs by 2012-2014. Since today’s incandescent light bulbs do not fit the energy efficiency standard, there will be a phase-out of current incandescent light bulbs. The phase-out will start with 100-watt bulbs in January 2012 and end with 40-watt bulbs in January 2014. By 2020, bulbs on the market must meet the 70% efficiency standard.
Compact fluorescent light bulbs (CFLs) already meet the 70% efficiency standard, which means that most public spaces and homes are switching to CFLs. As you may know, some reports suggest that there may be enough UVB radiation in fluorescent light bulbs to cause photosensitivity in people with lupus.
The LFA government relations staff has been working with other groups affected by this legislation to form a coalition: Sjogren’s Syndrome Foundation, National Psoriasis Foundation, Epilepsy Foundation, MAGNUM, and American Academy of Neurology. The LFA government relations staff and this coalition have scheduled meetings on Capitol Hill and are working with the light bulb industry to determine whether a new incandescent light bulb will be released before January 2012.

SHOUT OUT

I'd like to send a shout out to 3 etsy shops that I heard about through the Business Marketing thread on Etsy.com. Here's the thread if you want to see it yourself - these sellers didn't start it: Etsy Sellers Popped Up Inside A Kit I Purchased At My Local Book Shop http://www.etsy.com/forums_thread.php?thread_id=5699160 They are featured in a book!! The book is called, The Softies Kit Instructions and Tools for Creating 15 Plush Pals by Therese Laskey. The three etsy.com shops are

craftymommy http://www.craftymommy.etsy.com/

sweetestpea http://www.sweetestpea.etsy.com/

threewishesdesign http://www.threewishesdesign.etsy.com/

Way to go!! Best of luck! Hope more good things come your way!!

Thanks for stopping by!

Wendy

Saturday, July 19, 2008

My Day, My New Bookmark, A Shout Out for an Etsy Shop

Today Hubby and I spent time as if it were a Saturday morning of our youth instead of Saturday morning of our 50's. We recently found out where there is a German Bakery and not far from it a German/Bavarian Restaurant. So this morning we left all our cares behind us and set out to find them.

AHHHH!! What a delightful aroma as we stepped into the bakery!! Oh and the surprise we had to find it is also a delicatessen and dry goods store! We were like kids in a candy store! The fun we had! The breads we bought! The goodies! The things we left behind for another day!!!!!


Then it was off to find the restaurant. It wasn't hard to find either, only 10 miles away at most. It looked like a little Bavarian house. The luncheon menu also included a few favorites from the dinner menu. We ate, of course, from the dinner items. I had Rahmschnitzel and Hubby had Sauerbraten. Both choices were excellent! We couldn't leave without dessert of course. It was Hazelnut Torte for me and Cherry Strudel for Hubby. All I can say is MMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMM!!!!!


When we got home I finished making a bookmark that I started last night. I'm going to list it on my etsy shop when I finish writing. I really enjoyed making this bookmark and I almost kept it for myself! It just sparkles so nicely, with the tiny crystal-like seed beads in a medium sapphire blue, the genuine Swarovski crystals in light sapphire blue and crystal ab. I also used the gemstone dark blue aventurine tumbled into round beads. They make a striking difference to the other beads. I added butterfly charms to one end and a cross to the other to finish it off. Here's a sneak peak:



SHOUT OUT FOR...
Some people don't like to promote shops that are competitors, but I'm just not that way. You will see a list of other etsy shops over on the right side. One them I would like to do a SHOUT OUT for right now. The shop is called Jewelry by The Creators Palette and the shop site is http://www.TCPJewelry.etsy.com This shop is relatively new but has a sister shop, The Creators Palette, that has been around a bit longer. The jewelry shop produces wonderful medical bracelets for adults and children. I just browsed the shop today and saw one for children that has the cutest frog faces on it! There are other pieces of lovely jewelry besides the medical bracelets, such as earrings. The owner, Melanie, is a terrific artist and offers great customer service. I hope you will stop by her shop to see all that she offers!!

I will see you all again soon!
Wendy

Friday, July 11, 2008

It has been so hot here in Colorado! I know its hot all over, so I shouldn't whine! We don't have air conditioning. We really only NEED it for about 2 or 3 weeks out of the year. The rest of the time fans, carefully opening and closing doors and blinds during the day works very well. We also have an attic fan aka whole house fan. Today I wish I had air conditioning!! I can't seem to cope. I can't stay focused. Anyone else out there have that problem?


I did manage to add 2 new pieces to my etsy shop!! I added a pair of earrings and a necklace. They actually match, but I'm selling them separately. I am giving a $5.00 discount, though if you buy them together!!


Green Aventurine and Emerald Swarovski Earrings

by Sidewing Creations
Green Aventurine and Emerald Swarovski Necklace, full view
by Sidewing Creations

Green Aventurine and Emerald Swarovski Necklace, close-up

by Sidewing Creations

I really enjoyed making these 2 pieces. I started with the necklace. Anyone who has visited my shop know that I love working with Swarovski Crystal beads. I found the gemstone beads on my last shopping trip to refill my stock. I think these pale gemstones, Aventurine its called, looks great with the Emerald Bicone Swarovski Crystals. The sterling silver beads just seemed to add a nice accent to the colors. Once I finished the necklace, I knew I had to make a pair of earrings!

I decided to sell them separately, because many people today are really into earrings, but not necessarily into the matching necklace. On the other hand, when I do sell sets, I usually give a price break, so I am giving a price break to anyone who buys these two pieces together. I hope someone finds them as beautiful as I do! That's the problem with artists and parents, we never when our "babies" are truly beautiful or people are just being polite!!!!!!!

Please scroll to the bottom to see a few more items in my shop or click on my banner to go to my shop directly!

I'd love for you to visit!!

Wendy

Tuesday, July 1, 2008

I can't believe it has been so long since I posted last! Its been a busy time for my family once again! Or maybe I should say as always!! My husband was "separated" from his job. You can read that layed-off. We knew it was coming, but thought he had another six months to a year. We're worried, but not overly so. He has already had two interviews and we are working on a possible business venture of our own. My etsy shop certainly won't keep us afloat and my Lupus prevents me from getting a regular job. But we know there are MANY people out there today in the same circumstances and we have a strong faith. We may not live like kings, but we'll be all right!

On the lighter side, our son, daughter and son-in-law gave us a combination Father's Day present and birthday present for me. We got tickets to see Crosby, Stills and Nash in Concert! It was a great concert!!!!!!!!! They are still wonderful performers, still very political, anti-war, and a bit irreverent. The crowd was mostly fifty-something plus, but there was a healthy dose of the younger generation. They played about fifty percent oldies and fifty percent newer and brand new stuff. Stephen Stills can still play guitar like nobody else! I wish you could all have been there with us!

On my birthday, everyone was able to be together to go out to dinner. That doesn't happen often, so it was a real treat. We sat around the dinner table for quite some time laughing and talking. My hubby had to leave an extra big tip to make up for how long we sat there, but it was worth it.

After several days of being on the run, concert, my birthday, seeing some family, etc., my Lupus flared up. I crashed for several days. I was in excruciating pain. My joints were hurting and my muscles ached. I had vague nausea and I was extremely fatigued. I had a headache that would come and go. I had rashes and other symptoms I won't bother to go into. I couldn't sleep and I didn't want to be awake because it hurt so bad. This lasted about 4 days before it began to let up. I always seem to pay for having fun, but it is usually worth it! I hate having Lupus, but I am used to it and have learned to deal with it. I write about it to help educate people about it.

Now that I'm back to feeling better, I'm back to making jewelry for my shop and for my friends. I'm helping my husband search the web for work. I'm helping him formulate an idea for a new business option for us, well its really for him since I can't work. In general life is getting back to normal!

Thanks for popping in!
Wendy

Sunday, June 15, 2008

Today is Father's Day

Today is Father's Day. I miss my father. He died 19 years ago and I still miss him. I often wonder how he can still be having such an effect on my life all these years later, but he does. I'll be 51 years old in a few weeks and there are things about my relationship with my Father that still effect me in my day to day life.

I'm really glad about that. It means he is still with me is some way. He still is a part of me in some way and a part of my children. He is still a part of my life.

HAPPY FATHER'S DAY, DAD!!
I still LOVE you!

I hope all you father's out there had a great day!
Wendy

Wednesday, June 4, 2008

I really, really want a Vacation!

As I wrote just a few days ago, the open road is calling!!!!! Hubby and I just can't decide where we want to go this year. Besides that, our summer is already filling up with family and friends wanting us for one thing or another! UGH!!! There is a stage musical called Pump Boys and Dinettes. It has a song in it that really says how I feel...

I need a vacation
like nobody's business
I need a vacation
from more of the same old thing

I could go on, but even now I might get in trouble!!! Its such a great song. Well, it was really a great show too. Anyway, gas prices are up, hotel prices are up, food prices are up, get what I mean? Still we just want to get on that motorcycle and RIDE!

To change the subject, I've work overtime at trying to make a sale in my Etsy shop, but nothing seems to work. I participate in the threads, I visit other blogs, I blog here, I'm a member of a team, I'm current redoing my photos for my items, I've been buried on Buried Treasure and I joined their website and I try to participate. I don't know what else to do. I either have to give it up soon and figure that my jewelry just isn't that good or find some other strategy. Either way, its not gonna be fun. If anyone wants to comment on my shop site, this one or my jewelry, I'd be happy to hear from you. Honest critiques welcome, no bashing please. I don't think that helps anyone.

Here's a picture of a necklace I relisted yesterday with new pictures, with black and white backgrounds:



Thanks for stopping by!
Wendy

Thursday, May 29, 2008

Its That Time of Year Again...

Its that time of year again! Yep! The open road is calling! Hubby and I are thinking VACATION!! But just where to go?? The economy being what it is, we're not sure just how far we want to go and we've already done the Colorado tour.

Not to worry! We'll come up with something! Let's see, we've been to Montana, South Dakota and Las Vegas. We've also toured Colorado as mentioned above. Did I mention we're talking about doing this on our motorcycle? Well, we are, but now we have a sidecar of course. I get too tire and sore from my Lupus to ride on the back all day, but I used to do that "back in the day". Now I do it as much as I can! Not that I'm complaining mind you. The sidecar keeps me riding and keeps the Lupus from taking over my life.

Maybe we could head for Idaho? We've never been there before and it might be fun. Depending on when we go, we could go to Arizona to the areas we've never been. Or we could go back to Las Vegas and then drive through some of the areas there that we've never been. Hhmmm. Anyone have any suggestions???




Here's a picture from our trip touring Colorado. That's Hubby on the right and our faithful companion Taz sitting on the trunk bag. He was a gift from our kids and came dressed in leathers, has club "colors" on the jacket and an earring. The sidecar opens by lifting the front up which is why it looks kind of funny.

This trip, like most, we were doing some geocaching. Its sort of like treasure hunting with a GPS unit. Lots of people are doing it all over the world. You can do it alone, as a family or as teams. Sometimes the treasures you find are more junk than treasure and sometimes you find something really nice, but always you have fun just searching for the treasure!! You can learn more about geocaching at http://www.geocaching.com/ or click on the "button" in the right column.

Anyway, geocaching takes to places we would never go when we travel. First, the motorcycle often takes us off the main roads and then geocaching also often takes you off the beaten path. Hubby and I have learned more about history of areas, found more fun places and met more people this way than we ever would have traveling the touristy way!

Just talking about this makes me want to pack up my backpack and hit the road! Only one problem. Hubby took the motorcycle to work today!!!

Happy Travels Everyone!
Wendy

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

So, the long weekend is over and I didn't get to relax very much, but I did get to have some fun! Of course, not all of you will think that what I did on Saturday was fun, but hubby and I had a great time!

We are the inheritors, so to speak, of my hubby's family recipe for bratwurst. Saturday was the second year we have spent with his parents learning the fine art of making it from start to finish. That means from grinding the meat, seasoning it, cleaning the casings, filling them, freezing some and, of course, cooking them properly. That last step we already knew. My hubby's family makes Thuringer style bratwurst since that's where they are from and hubby is first generation born in the USA. We had so much fun doing this with his parents! We're also honored that they entrusted us with this tradition. We made 112 brats on Saturday which will take us through his father's birthday party and maybe leave enough for each of hubby's 2 siblings, his parents, and ourselves to have 1 or 2 meals. We have now served our apprenticeship and the bratwurst making is now officially our project in the future. I can't wait until next year!!


Sunday, hubby's nephew had an impromptu open house. He and his wife just moved into a new home and they decided not to wait until they were all settled and everything was "perfect". It turned out to be a great time and less stress for them. A lot of the family had not made plans because of our sausage making on Saturday and birthday party plans next weekend for hubby's father, so most were around town.


Monday, I did have to stop to rest some. My Lupus was starting to catch up with me. I was feeling achy and stiff. I was very fatigued and just didn't want to do much of anything. It didn't help that the weather was damp and rainy which doesn't happen often here in Colorado. I spent some time on the computer doing some checking in on my Etsy shop and some research for my hubby. He spent the time doing a major repair on our sprinkler system.


Yesterday I was a good Mom and took my recuperating daughter out to the bookstore. The store is very near her apartment. She was going stir crazy! She was able to look for a book she wants, sit in one of the cushy chairs when she needed to and generally have different scenery. She probably won't be driving for at least another 2 weeks, so I maybe doing this for awhile. I really don't mind. We usually have a good time, but she's at the whiny stage of her recuperation. She still hurts, but not enough to keep her down. She can't drive. She doesn't have all her strength back, so she can't go do everything she wants to do and she is still in the arm restraint. Ah, well, as my own mother reminds me, "This too, shall pass!"


Have a great day whatever you choose to do!

Wendy
This is my Shades of Sapphire Necklace available in my Estsy shop

Thursday, May 22, 2008

Just dropping in...

I just have a few moments to update. My daughter suffered a reaction to the combination of her pain medication and the anesthesia. She ended up getting dehydrated and went to the emergency room at 6:30 AM on Saturday. After spending several hours getting fluids and new pain medication, she went back home. It did set her recovery back several days though. Today is the first day that she hasn't needed a "babysitter" when her husband has had to go to work or run errands.

Its been nice to be home today to catch up on everything that I've left undone for the last week!! I'm looking forward to the long weekend as a time to relax a bit.

Please, remember our veterans and those who have lost their lives, no matter the war, no matter if you supported the war they participated in, even though the actual date of Memorial Day isn't until May 31st, this is the weekend we'll be taking time off for it.

Wendy

Friday, May 16, 2008

How things change when...

Yesterday my daughter had surgery on her shoulder. It was outpatient surgery, but hubby and I were both there with her along with our son-in-law. This was a new experience for us. We were not the "responsible party" for her. We were not consulted. We were not called when it was time to see her just before she was whisked away to surgery. We had to wait for permission. The doctor didn't invite us to the debriefing afterwards. We had to be invited. Its not that our son-in-law didn't invite us. We have a wonderful relationship with him and he just looked at us as if to say, "aren't you coming?"

How things change when a child gets married. Parents are no longer at the top of the priority list. They move to second place. And well they should! Its just that this was the first time it was really obvious for us. It felt weird and good. We realized that our lovely young daughter was truely grown, had chosen a good man, but still needed us just a little bit since she asked us to be there. It was weird to step back and watch them interact, not as this young couple playing at marriage through the wedding process, but actually working through something of importance and knowing how to handle it. They've been married just a year.

Hubby and I looked at each other at the end of the day and knew we had learned a lot. We knew our daughter would recover from her surgery and do well. We learned that she was a strong woman. We learned that our son-in-law is as fine a man as we originally thought. We learned that their marriage has a strong chance of surviving the many problems life will throw at them. We learned that we, as parents, did a pretty good job raising her afterall the diaper rashes, childhood bumps, bruises, and illnesses, afterall the scary teenage years of rebellion, temptations and boyfriends, afterall the young adulthood of slowly letting go into the real world, afterall.

Yes, I'd say things change when children get married, afterall...

That's just my view,
Wendy

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

Its another day!

No matter how hard we try, tomorrow always comes! Sometimes I just want to slow down the days. Sounds crazy to some of you, I'm sure. My grandmother and my mother were right. The older you get the faster time flies. I have so much to do and so little time to do it in. How can that be? I don't even have a regular job? Well, I suppose part of that is due to my Lupus, but I hear my healthy friends complaining of the same problem - NO TIME!

I don't want to waste this life and no, I don't expect to leave some big legacy either. I just want to have some fun along the way. I want to know that I did my work well, raised my kids to be good people, loved God with all my heart and fun while doing it. I don't expect to be remembered a 100 years from now unless someone is still doing the family genealogy. Then I might be a name on a long line of family names.

Its hard to feel that I'm doing any of these things when I feel that I have to rush here and there and everywhere. I don't work because I'm disabled. I do make jewelry, but I don't sell enough to consider this a job. I don't do craft fairs and such, I just sell a few things on Etsy and I donate to a few good causes. Otherwise, I still do what I can around the house to keep it clean, but can't do heavy cleaning. I do the laundry. I keep on the correspondence. I keep the checkbook and do the bills. I care for my 83 year old mother who has had 2 mini strokes and has other health issues. I'm the one who holds the lifelines for the family - I don't keep them afloat - I just hold the place, like a bookmark, for the times they need an ear or shoulder and someone often does. Like people who work full time, I feel like I'm always on, even when I'm off due to my health.

How many of you feel this way? Ready to slow down? Me too! Hubby and I are looking into ways to slow down and live a more simple life. I hope you will do the same. The more we do so, the healthier we become. We are also finding that we are doing more for the betterment of the earth and our fellow man/woman.

I hadn't intended to get so philosophical today, but there you go!

See you next time!
Wendy

Monday, May 12, 2008

It was a long weekend and a wonder Mother's Day!

The weekend seemed to take a long time. Saturday was very busy doing all sorts of things, like doing laundry, cleaning up, etc. Hubby and did do one thing on Saturday that was fun. We went out and bought a new car. We don't usually buy brand new cars. We usually buy them used because of the amount of depreciation when you drive them off the lot. But, we were offered a great deal from Subaru and we met all the criteria. We also got an excellent interest rate. So we traded in our Subaru Outback for a new Subaru Outback. Very similar cars, smaller car payment, new color, 30 miles instead of 58,800 miles on the engine and new tires instead of needing to replace tires. Can't beat that!!

Sunday, Mother's Day, turned out just wonderful. We missed church, which I was sorry about, but that was pushing it for me. We went to brunch with hubby's family and my Mother. It was good food and good company, but it was so nice when everyone went their own way afterwards. I really enjoyed coming home, changing into my jeans and relaxing with my hubby and kids. We never did get a walk or hike in, because I just wasn't up to it. My Mother was tired too. She rested, then came over for a little longer visit and then went back to her area (attached apartment-like part of the house). The rest of the time hubby, son, daughter and part of the time son-in-law (he had to work closing shift) watched a movie and ate Coldstone Ice Cream!!

My Lupus must be on the upswing again. I find I'm tired today for no good reason and I'm having problems focusing on the important things I should be doing, like paying bills! Oh well, I did get 2 more items listed in my etsy shop and hope you will stop by to take a look.

If you want more information about Lupus or the related conditions, make sure you check out my list of links to Health Related Issues.

Thanks for dropping in!
Wendy

Friday, May 9, 2008

Is this blog looking any better to you?

I've added a few things to my blog that I hope will add interest to it. I have a set of health related links that include Lupus, Fibromyalgia, and Sojgren's Syndrome. I have Lupus and the other two I have as secondary to my Lupus, though some people have them as their primary condition. I hope the health links will be helpful to people passing through my blog who haven't had much luck getting help with their conditions or will help friends, family and care givers of those with these illnesses.

I also added a set of links to my favorite charities and causes. I didn't include any of the health related links here, I figure that's a given. Poverty/Hunger is my number one concern. There are more good organizations out there than the ones that I have listed, I'm sure, but these are organizations that I have found are trustworthy. They make a difference in different ways too. Some are advocates, some are helping the immediate needs with short term help and some are helping with long term solutions. Most of these organizations use little of their funds on administrative costs. The ELCA (Evangelical Lutheran Church in America) World Hunger Appeal is highly rated among charitable organizations for this.

You will also see the little picture and the "Join Geocaching" "Have Fun". Clicking on it will take you to the Geocaching.com website where you can learn all about one of my favorite pastimes. My hubby and love to do this, its sort of like treasure hunting with a GPS unit, all the time. We do it on vacation and on weekends when we're looking to get out of the house. Check it out! Its fun for singles, couples, and families!

I did finish my small projects and got them packaged up. I now have to get them off to the post office. I also finished printing out some genealogy material and packaged that up. It also needs to be mailed out. I now have more genealogy to input into my computer. The more I think I have completed, the more there is to do!

I'd like to spend some time creating more jewelry for my etsy shop. It seems though that every time I sit down to do so I either get interrupted or my hands don't work due to pain. I have joint pain from my Lupus and now I have the start of osteoarthritis. I think I have to rearrange my jewelry making time to earlier in the day when my hands are usually better. NOW if I could just figure out how to make sure no one calls me during that time!!!!!!

I'm looking forward to Mother's Day this year more than most. We usually don't do anything, but go to brunch and then sit around at some one's house all dressed up being nice, doing nothing and being bored. I know that sounds bad, but I'm almost 51 years old and have two children, 24 (single) and 22 (married) and I have only had two Mother's Days that I felt were really for me. This year we are still going to brunch. BUT afterwards we all get to go our own way. My immediate family will come back to our house and we will take a walk or hike depending on what I am up to at the time. I love spending time outdoors when I can. If I can't do that or I can only handle a short walk, we'll spend time at home playing a game like monopoly or dominoes or watching a movie. My family will figure out a light meal in the evening. I never really want to do anything fancy on Mother's Day. I like to spend it with my family doing some of my favorite things. I would love to include the rest of the family, but most of them don't think that it is special if you aren't dressed up.

Well, that's enough of my meanderings for one day. I'm glad you stopped by.

My Best To All Of You Out There!
Wendy

Wednesday, May 7, 2008

Still struggling to brighten up my blog!

Today is a very rainy day and I am not motivated to do anything! I really had to struggle to sit down at the computer and not go curl up in a corner with a good book. However, here I am! I have spent a little time over at etsy.com looking over my shop, commenting on the community forum threads, browsing some of the shops and meeting a few new people. I really like it over there. I just wish my sales would pick up! I seem to do better with "in person" sales than I do in my shop. I'm not sure, but I think my pictures are part of the problem. I'm working on that. I really don't want to do the craft show route. I think it could be fun, but I also think it would be exhausting. I think my health issues would be a problem there.

I've also been out looking at some of the blogs of my fellow etsian sellers. I really like some of them. They have great looks and content. I have no idea how they do it, but I'm working on that too!! Yesterday, I added my shop banner and a direct link to the shop. I also added the cute little "I love etsy.com" icons to add a little color. I don't know what to add today, but I'm going to look at things to consider.

If anyone reads this and wants to make some practical suggestions, I'd certainly appreciate it. Just remember I'm new to this and might need some "how-to" help if the suggestion is to advanced. I hope this blog will eventually get some notice like the others I was reading today!

Thanks for stopping by!
Wendy

Tuesday, May 6, 2008

Today I have been working on some smaller projects that I want to finish up with before time catches up with me. I made two zipper pulls and 2 pairs of earrings to donate to a fellow etsian's class reunion. They have a small budget for their 10th reunion and she asked for some help. I was afraid if I left this too long, it would be time to send them and I wouldn't have finished the items yet!! I hate it when I feel rushed, don't you?

I was also working on some earrings to put in the shop. I was trying to get inspired with some new design. I wasn't inspired, so I worked on an old design that hasn't been in the shop yet. I suppose that's better than nothing coming out my brain!!

I also put together some genealogy pages, family group sheets, descendant charts and the like, to send off to a cousin. He found some old family documents in an album of family pictures that no one wanted. He took the pictures to rescue them from oblivion and there were the documents with names and dates that had been missing from the family genealogy!! He's going to photograph the documents for me and I just sent him my most recent update of information. If anyone out there is interested in family history, you know how addiction it can be to chase your ancestors!!

I want to head over to etsy for a little while today. I'm on 2 BnR's and I like to spend time in the promotional and marketing threads getting to know my fellow etsians. I'm also going to see if I can figure out how to add anything else to this blog to make it interesting!

Please stop by again!
Wendy

Saturday, May 3, 2008

My First Post!

Since this is my first posting, I'm very excited! I feel I should tell everyone everything about me... BUT I won't! I just want to introduce myself very briefly.

I'm 50 years old and I will be married 30 years to my high school sweetheart in October. We have 2 grown children, 1 is married and 1 is still thinking about it. I enjoy making jewelry and I sell it on Etsy.com. I am one of my family's genealogists/historians and have been doing it for over 20 years. I love to go geocaching (think treasure hunting). I love my family. I read all kinds books, like to travel and meet new people. God has always been part of my life having been baptised as a baby into the Lutheran Faith. When I was 34 I was diagnosed with Lupus aka SLE (we'll talk more about that some other time).

When asked how I named my Etsy.com shop, Sidewing Creations, this is what I tell people:
My hubby and I have always loved to ride motorcycles, but as my Lupus has gotten worse it has become harder for me to take long trips. Eventually we decided to get a sidecar. Now when I am too tired or too sore to sit on the back, I get in the sidecar which is more comfortable and has a cover to protect me from the sun, cold, or what ever weather might be bothering me on a particular day. The motorcycle is a Honda Goldwing, so my hubby calls me his "Sidewing" when I'm in it. My avatar is of me in the sidecar and the shop title was born! I make mostly jewelry, but do make book marks, keychains, backpack hangers, zipper pulls, etc., so I used creations instead of jewelry in the title.

That's a quick introduction of me. I hope you'll visit often!
Wendy