Thursday, August 30, 2012

The conversations my kids have...

I am sitting in my room, writing diligently about "servant-leadership" theory, which frankly is quite an interesting topic. Although I am struggling at finding a 'leader' to interview for my first paper.  I am thinking of going the non-traditional route and interviewing someone who is a servant-leader but not in a traditional 'leadership' position.

But, that is neither here nor there.

While I am sitting here, writing about Greenleaf and Hesse and what I can see as their philosophies on servant first leaders, I hear a heated discussion going on in the living room (my office and work-space for the shop are in a tiny corner of my three bedroom apartment, hey, times are tough.) between my three kids.

It went like this:

Aidan:  I think Mommy should be black widow, because she already has red hair.

Madison :  I think if she is black widow, she will complain about the pleather outfit.

Timmy:  Do you think if she is Black Widow, that Dad will be Hawkeye?

At this moment I literally spewed coffee from my lips, thank god I was looking away from the computer at the time.

However, shortly after this argument, they all came running in asking if I was going to be Black Widow for Halloween.  They all sounded like the kid from "Home Alone" finding out he was "Home Alone".

"Well," I said, "I haven't really given it much thought...being not even September and all."

They then went into this talking over each other argument about the importance of Mommy being black widow, so they could be other "Avengers" for Halloween.

You know what?  I am thinking they are getting a little old for this holiday anyhow, although I am certain that if their Dad does happen to make it home (after four deployments, a tour in korea and two full years living down in Louisiana, where I can't breathe) for halloween, he will be certain to take them out for the candy.

Here's to hoping I can get what I want out of it though, and have him dress up as Wolverine.  Or any Hugh Jackman character for that matter--even the dude from "Kate and Leopold."

It makes me wonder though, about two things:  how early do you prepare for holidays in your shop, or even in general?

Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Hand me the coffee, and back away slowly...

So I am writing this way too late -- and have found myself having to make to-do lists again.  See the thing is, I generally have a killer memory in things I have to do, but I think that sense of accomplishment goes a long way of checking things off the to-do list.

Therefore, even though I should be writing about the jewelry show from last weekend -- and some of the lovely gemstones both my mother and daughter picked out, I won't. 

See, I have this list...and it's a bit crazy.  It's full of amazingly unrelated things, like clean the kitchen, and return library books, smashed in-between do your homework and update social media.  By the way, no where on there did I add 'write blog post', because I thought I had enough on there --- yet here I am, trying to use coffee time productively. 

See, Maggie here (puts up two thumbs "this guy" style) literally can not function without coffee in the morning.  I am talking to the point of not being able to form simple coherent sentences.  In fact, some of my friends, when they figure this out (even though I tell them, they think I am exaggerating) decide to call me at the butt-crack of dawn and listen as a generally communicative personality suddenly can not form a sentence. Then they laugh, at least for a full day, sometimes it stretches into a week or so.

I hear it's quite funny.

But, to be honest, I really have a long, intense list for today...yet, here I am, avoiding it, so that I can enjoy another cup o' joe.  Speaking of Joe--I know this whole coffee addiction started years ago, while in uniform.  Yes this girl (two thumbs) was in the US Army at one time in her life.

 If you would like to help other people in Uniform get their coffee fix, please donate to cup of Joe for a Joe:

It's a great program and makes men and women overseas so happy to be the lucky one to get that cup of Joe, while downrange.

And, I promise, one of these days I will show all the lovely jewels I got at the show -- right after I finish my list and revamp this blog, I really hate how the top looks these days.

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

I honestly do love you, Washington State.

There are a lot of reasons I choose to live in the Pacific Northwest -- one of those reasons, however, is not our stunningly reliable weather.

 I recently started re-shooting some pictures of items -- as well as finally getting around to shooting pictures of new items I have made since, well, about March -- and don't you know after a whole summer of skyrocketing temperatures and consistent sunshine, it decided to cloud over. Just as I was getting the camera together and choosing the lens to shoot with. Maybe I should just go for those post-apocalyptic pictures of items that seem to always make it to etsy's front page -- you know, since I have it built in here in Seattle. Don't get me wrong, those pictures are so lovely, so wonderful, and always have such wonderful qualities. But be honest now -- when am I going to be in lighting like that?

 So I go for 'natural lighting' which as many people say, is sunshine at like high noon on the equator or something... you know have a gunfight at the OK Corral at the same time out there while you are setting your props and models for shoots of earrings.

But really, what is 'natural lighting' up here? It's certainly not the sun...which leads me to one of the many reasons I actually choose to live here.

 Unlike one of my best friends from High School -- I am really not a big fan of heat or sunshine. Sure, I enjoy some summer days -- but much like the cold, dead, rain in winter here, after a few months it just gets old. Plus there is that whole allergy thing with dust, so when there is not rain, I am miserable -- another reason it took me so long to get back onto my shop page this year.

So, today when the sun made its appearance between the hours of 1:05 pm and 1:12 pm, I made sure I got a few pictures before the sun retreated. It's not high noon, but it's not post-apocalyptic either. Here are a few of the pictures -- some of these are not in the shop yet, but I will get there eventually:

Monday, August 20, 2012

The Sun is out, and well, it's pretty hot...

OMG, what a summer it has been -- I mean roller-coaster hot weather,  a shocking minor surgery, job search, job search, job search.  I have barely had time to look at my jewels let alone make the new ones I have had designed in my head for months now.

I have done a lot of soul searching in the midst of my insane couponing to make ends meet this year off (not by choice, mind you) and I keep seeing "if you don't love it, don't chase after it."  That really resonates with me as the summer winds down and I get ready to send the hellions (I mean my wonderful, darling children) back to school.  (Will that day ever really come?  I am one terrible stay-at-home mom.).

I keep thinking about my jobs I have done -- you know, in PR, Marketing, etc.  And while I like it enough to get out of bed with a smile on every morning  there are really two places in those job descriptions I love:

1) Research.   I am really more of a balanced individual when I research almost anything.  The last year I spent a lot of time researching theory of leadership as it relates to the military rank structure and how the federal government hires who they hire and why -- plus the impact those things have on current operations during the pending draw-down.   I know I know, from a stay at home mom/ jewelry designer who is really bad about updating her store and blog.  Makes absolutely no sense, right?  But, it makes my blood really move with passion when I look into not only what is going on, but how to make it better, ya know?

2) Relationship Building.   I love to build community and relationships online and offline.  There can be no real reason for a relationship to form -- for example, one of my neighbors who is also unemployed during the 'recession' (let's be honest, this really is a depression that has been faked to look like a lingering 'recession') is also suddenly into couponing to make ends meet.  So who was the first person I told about the insane deal on Vitamin Water I found (after my mom)...the neighbor lady in the same situation as me.

Now -- what does this have to do with jewelry making?  Absolutely nothing, I just thought maybe I would open up a bit and give a glimpse of my real personality. Which, by the way, is a bit neurotic.

But, the sun is out -- its not as warm finally I got off my but, out of my room, left the fan for a few minutes and didn't break out a single coupon to take some pictures of some new and older jewels.  They are up on the site now, after I showed my kiddos how to take close ups and edit in Picasa, you know so I can pay them to take pictures later on in the year.

Yeah, it's a family thing, this Etsy thing.