Thursday, September 30, 2010

What Inspires You?

I just wanted to tell everyone about this first-ever contest being held by  This is sure to be a great one with substantial $$$$ for beads!!!  Here's what Artbeads has to say:

"Artbeads is proud to announce our first ever ‘What Inspires You?’ jewelry contest! The theme of’s first beading contest is to let beading artists share their inspiration with others. There are two categories, necklaces and other beaded designs for this contest. Voting will be open to the public to determine the top 3 winners in each category. A picture of the inspiration and design will allow the voters to see how each entry is represented.

The Grand Prize Winner in the Necklace and Beading contests will each receive a $500 Gift Certificate, the 2nd Place winners will each receive a $250 Gift Certificate and the 3rd Place winners will each receive a $100 Gift Certificate.

This is a contest of originality, design, and vision. All entries MUST be an original design. At least 50% of the beads and components in a submitted entry must be purchased from Participants must upload one picture of their design and one of picture of their inspiration, such as you see below in the banners. This contest is open to beaders worldwide, aged 18 and older."

Here are examples of photo entries, one showing the inspiration and one showing the beaded work:

I hope you enter and win!  Happy Beading!

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

I Escaped My Kidnappers!

I have been kidnapped, bound and gagged, oh since maybe July 31st...strangely right after my last post.  However, I am wily and outwitted my attackers and have escaped, free to blog again!  That's my story and I'm sticking to it.

I am very excited to say that I have an order in for some beads from and am anxiously awaiting their arrival.  More to come on that!  I am not so happy to say, though, that I have fallen terribly behind on the BJP, since I was kidnapped, of course.  I have 2 or 3 ufo's that I hope to finish in the near future.  Still waiting for a break in the weather (up to about 104 today still) because my beading area is incredibly hot.  When the weather cools a little it will be so much more pleasant.

On the personal front, things are in full fall swing.  Sara is going to be a star soccer player again this year.  There are only 2 girls on her team, and Sara is hanging in there with the best of those boys.  Matthew is playing football, and of course hubby Jeff is coaching again.  This year though he brought his dad out of coaching retirement and grandpa is assistant coach.  How fun!  Matthew has a game tonight, and they have been practicing hard.  We'll see what happens.

My daughter, Samantha, is what I would consider to be typical for a teenage girl...moody, grumpy, hiding in her cave (I mean bedroom) and listening to music while on her computer and texting.  She acts like she is being tortured when she has to sit with the family for dinner, and gets up and leaves as soon as she has scooped the last bite into her mouth.  I mean, the fork hasn't even hit her lips and her ass is getting up already. 

Starting in about August she was asked what she wanted to do for her birthday and what she wanted to get.  She kept saying, "Nothing.  It's just another day."  Bah humbug!!!  No child of mine will go without a special birthday!  Jeff had the idea of getting her a new, good quality speaker sound system for her computer since she is always listening to her music on it.  Her music is very important to her.  I had the idea of making her a special dinner.  Sami became a vegetarian when she was just turning 12, I think.  This birthday she's 15.  One of the things that she had to give up that was one of her absolute favorites was Panda Express's orange chicken.  She looooooooooved orange chicken!!!  Sara, my 8 year old, is a super kitchen helper!  So I enlisted Sara to help me make vegetarian orange chicken.  There were lots of smells and things coming from our kitchen that we don't usually have (asian is not typical for us), and she kept coming in with a concerned look on her face asking what we were making.  But we just smiled with flour and corstarch covering us and said, "It's a surprise!"  Let me tell you.  Orange chicken is NOT easy!!!  Especially when preparing two separate batches, pots, pans, etc of for us meat eaters and one for the vegetarian.  And I have a VERY tiny kitcen.  It took us 2 1/2 hours, but we did it!  Orange chicken and fried rice.  (Just an FYI in case anyone is wondering...I buy a brand of vegetarian meat called Quorn.  It has meat texture, tastes like meat and does not contain any soy.  Look them up on the 'net for a store near you.) 

Sami came to the table and looked at her plate.  She was sooooooooooo excited!!!  You should have seen the look on her face when she took her first bite.  It was pure pleasure and bliss, let me tell you.  Later that night she hooked up her new speakers.  She heard the music and sat back and said, "Whoa!"  They sounded soooo good!  Another winner!

Earlier in the day Matthew helped me bake two pans of brownies (no cake...she prefers brownies).  We had my in-laws come over for brownies and ice cream after dinner.  She got a new very nice printer for her computer so she doesn't have to use Jeff's anymore for her school work.  She was pretty darned happy about that.  She also got a gift card to go shopping at one of her favorite stores...Hot Topic.  But the best part?  Samantha was happy, smiling, talking, and visiting...and seemed to be enjoying it!!!  It was so good to see her visibly happy.  She usually saves that for her friends.  She even said thank you and that she really appreciated it all.  She may have said, "It's just another day."  But I knew better.

After my kidnappers kept me tied for so long, I'm I still have any readers left out there?