Tuesday, March 27, 2007

Tomorrow we leave for Las Vegas!

Ok, ok, I know that you're dying to see the first necklace I've ever made... there are some pictures here. My hair should look better, since it was styled today, but I put it behind my ears. I realize that the necklace isn't everyone's taste, but I like it for evenings out. The dress in the photo is one that I bought specifically for Las Vegas. I thought I'd put a note about it in my blog, but apparently I didn't.

The dress is cream silk with black dots on it. It's a sleeveless sheath dress and it looks like it was made for me. Really, it is figure-clinging; Ian complained about the cost of the dress (only $50) until he saw it on me. It's very sexy :) It doesn't hurt that I've been working out and bellydancing for the last 3 months, so my tummy looks pretty awesome. I think I'm going to wear this figure-hugging sexy dress with my sky-high shoes (the ones I wore to the Christmas party - see them here). Pretty nice, huh? I don't know which night I'll be wearing this outfit when we're in Las Vegas, but it'll be one when we're seeing a show and I don't have to walk much. Maybe to see Penn and Teller on my birthday on Saturday?

We packed up our clothes for Las Vegas tonight - we leave tomorrow night, so we want to be ready. I have to pick up a couple of things tomorrow and then we'll be leaving tomorrow night. I'm very excited! As far as I know, we'll have the laptop and (I hope) internet access while I'm there, so I should be able to update you on our fun events each day. If for some reason the internet thing doesn't work out, then I'll upload all of my entries when we get back next Monday night.

Monday, March 26, 2007

Branching into necklaces?

I made my first necklace today!!! I need to shorten it just a bit because I didn't take into account how long the clasp was, but I can do that easily tomorrow. It's got hematite, onyx, and Swarovski crystals on a silver chain. It matches the earrings I made that have a black Swarovski round crystal, a hematite bead, and a clear Swarovski teardrop. They're beautiful. Will I have time to make a bracelet? Maybe :) No, I didn't take a picture; you'll have to wait until you see the Vegas pictures :)

I'm very woogly again tonight; I think I'm exhausted. Since I have a long day tomorrow, I'll go to bed now.

Sunday, March 25, 2007

A normal Sunday

I slept until 11:30am today and then had a two hour nap this afternoon, so I think I got as much sleep as yesterday :) I'm still very tired, though. I don't really know why that is, but I feel like I've been run over by a truck today. Sigh.

I did plan out a necklace that I'm going to make for myself. I made earrings on the weekend that are sparkly and that I'll take to Vegas. My two new dresses have fairly deep, low-cut necklines and so I wanted something to wear around my neck there. I didn't actually start making the necklace, because I was tired, but I'll do that tomorrow. It shouldn't take that long.

We also watched the remake of The Hills Have Eyes. It's similar but not the same as the original. This one implies that the mutants in the hills are people from a town that refused to evacuate during the US nuclear trials back in the 60s. It doesn't do as good a job of introducing the mutant characters as the original one did. This one is longer as the people fight back better. It might be true that people nowadays would fight back better than the would have 20 years ago; they're more likely to have guns, for one thing, and they'll have watched lots of movies that'll show them how to fight back. I think that we would recommend the first movie over this one. It's not awful, but it's not nearly as scary as the first one.

Saturday, March 24, 2007

Sleeping in is fun

I slept until 1:30pm today :) I had sort of planned to go to a bellydance practice for the recital next weekend this afternoon at 2:30pm, but I slept in too long. That's ok; I guess I needed it. We are going to Las Vegas on Wednesday, after all, and I want to be well-rested for that :)

Thank you all for your compliments on my new earring photos. I'm very pleased with the photos, myself, and I'm glad that you all like them, too.

We watched Dead and Breakfast today. It's hilarious! There's a guy who sings the story (like a chorus, I guess); his songs are funny. The story is pretty good, and the acting is good, too. It's pretty gory, but that's ok - mostly it's splatter, and you don't actually see many people getting killed. We would recommend this movie for sure, because it is so funny. Ian really liked it :)

I'd also like to recommend a juggling movie available for only $5USD from this page (you don't have to have a paypal account; you can use a credit card). The juggler is Wes Peden of Airplay; he was here at the Waterloo juggling festival last year. He's 17 now and one of the best jugglers in the world. He's applying to circus school in Sweden; apparently if you're accepted, your tuition is free but your housing is not and you can't work there while you're studying. Wes is trying to raise funds to help him pay for three years of living costs. So aside from the fact that the video is really, really good (which it is - it's way better than the Chris Bliss video everyone links to), the money goes to a good cause. So buy the video and watch it :)

Interestingly - Wes' parents have six kids, and the father Jeff quit his job to become a professional juggler with his son. They're still juggling together, although they don't have a lot of extra money. I imagine that if Wes doesn't get into circus school (which is highly unlikely) they'll invest the money and save it for the next time he's allowed to apply, in two years. It's still a good cause.

Friday, March 23, 2007

A fun Friday

Someone suggested that I tweak my arty and ruler photos in my etsy store just a little bit to lighten them, so I did that today. They do look better that way, I think. I finished that around 1pm EST today, so if you saw the pictures before that and haven't looked at them again, please have another look :)

Oh!!!!!!! I got some silver-plated clip-on earring things today. So if you don't have pierced ears and can handle silver then you can wear my earrings :) I'll be announcing this on my etsy store tomorrow. I didn't get sterling silver because they're MUCH more expensive and I figured in this one case I could get away with the plated stuff - anyone who wears clip-on earrings isn't going to be wearing them all day every day.

Some of the people we see regularly also have birthdays next week and so we went to dinner tonight at Caesar Martini's. The food was very good. The service was a tiny bit slow, but it wasn't too bad. Our waitress had trouble with the flambe part of the bananas foster dessert that some people ordered - then again, I'd be wary of doing things with flames and food as well. The restaurant turns into a bar in the later evening, and they turned up the music early on (before 8pm). Unfortunately, all we could hear was the bass and it didn't sound all that good. So when the manager asked if everything was all right, well, I told him that I wasn't happy about the music, especially since it was so early. He did turn it down, which I appreciated very much. I'd recommend this restaurant if you want a nice meal in the Waterloo area.

Later on, we watched the original The Hills Have Eyes movie. It was pretty good; there was a lot of suspense and it was generally a good horror movie. The story was reasonably believable, too. The special effects did leave something to be desired, but this is kind of to be expected for a movie in 1977. We'd recommend this one :)

We also rented the remake of The Hills Have Eyes. We'll watch that before we go to Vegas. They had a promotion on to get three 7-day movies for only $9 (two cost $7.50) so we took a chance on Dead and Breakfast. How can a movie with the tagline "It's like a bad horror movie...... only worse!" be bad? :) I'll let you know what we think of this one, too :)

Thursday, March 22, 2007

Finally finished my photos!

I put my new photos up in my etsy store!!!!!!! It took quite a while to edit all of my photos, but I finally finished - whew! :) I'm very, very pleased with the results. Please take a look and let me know what you think. I think that these photos better show the beauty of the earrings and their size. Let me know if any of the photos aren't perfect - I did them all in a batch and I think they're good but it's possible I let a sub-standard picture through.

That's pretty much all I was able to do today :) It looks like I'm getting a couple of packages tomorrow - I'm very excited about that. I ordered more findings and whatnot from a couple of places, since they are each having sales. I also got my Fire Mountain catalog today - oh my goodness I could spend DAYS reading it :) I'm very much looking forward to snuggling up with it and looking at all of the beads and findings and everything. I hope I don't spend any more money. Or else I hope I win BIG in Vegas :)

In other news, I think I figured out how to wrap a stone (cabochon) to be used as a pendant. I had intended to make a necklace using a wrapped stone for the trip to Las Vegas next week, but my bone pain is going up again and I'm not sure it would be terribly smart to put a rock against the bone that hurts. We'll see. If I can get the pain under control then I'll wear the necklace, because it would be awesome with my two new dresses. Otherwise, maybe I'll make some other kind of necklace.

Wednesday, March 21, 2007

More photos and my group

As I've mentioned before, the young women's support group that I go to has been having problems. There has been a lack of facilitation in the group; the person doing the facilitating just couldn't handle the group. I know it's hard to come into an existing group full of strong personalities, but she was having problems. Apparently she did talk to someone there (who badly facilitated last month's meeting), and that person ignored the concerns. Sigh.

Anyways, once someone else talked to her, she decided to resign. She apparently wishes us all well. Hmmmmph. I think I'm glad that she's gone. We talked tonight about what direction we felt we wanted the group to take. There's one woman there who was just bitchy to me; every time I said something she snapped at me. I tried to be nice and I wasn't the only person saying stuff to her - I guess she was having a bad day.

I also managed to get all of my photos done for all of my earrings. Oh my goodness that took a long time. I figured out my arty photos - Ian doesn't love all of them, but I think they look nice. They show off the colours of the earrings if not the exact shape for the longer dangly ones. They show off the shorter ones really well. I also have photos of the earrings laid flat on a white background next to a clear ruler to show the length of the earrings; from that, people should be able to estimate how wide the earrings are. I also have pictures of the earrings hanging from a black wire against a black background. Those look awesome.

It should be easy to take pictures for new earrings, too; the setup is quite easy to switch for each of the different shots.

So over the next day or so I'll be figuring out which photos are best (for every good photo there is at least one blurry one) and cropping them. It will take some time, but I'll be happy once it's done.

Tuesday, March 20, 2007

Mostly random thoughts

I spent part of the day getting ready to go to Las Vegas. I figured out which outfits I was going to bring (including which shoes) and starting some hemming. I'm very excited :)

In my Spirituality and Healing group we talked more about how the Secret isn't at all realistic because it kind of treats the universe like a fridge where you ask for stuff and you get whatever you want. That's not the case at all - you still have to act on your requests; you can't just ask for stuff. You have to try to make it happen. There is a lot more stuff that is wrong/not accurate in the Secret, which, if you know about it, isn't so bad - I shudder to think that people take what it says without thinking about it or doing further independent research.

I went to the dentist yesterday and it turns out that I have two teeny cavities. Many of the pills I take cause dry mouth which contributes to cavities :( I'm also thinking of whitening my teeth at the dentist's. I'm quite self-conscious about my teeth and wish that they were whiter. I do have to think about it, though.

Monday, March 19, 2007

Feeling much better

I feel much better today after going to Well-fit and bellydance. I didn't go last week and it seems that I need and have missed the physical activity. Both of these classes end next week and so I'll have to figure out what to do afterwards. I don't want to schedule anything just now, but if I had unlimited time and money, I'd go to the Well-fit grad class on Mondays and Wednesdays at 5:30pm ($45/month). And I'd take the Introductory Drumming as well as the Technique Workout classes at bellydancing ($265/12 weeks for both classes). I'll have to see.

I am still watching old movies. Right now, An American in Paris is on. I've become a bit of a Gene Kelly fan; he's funny, he can dance, and he can sing. The movies that show on TCM are good. As I've mentioned before, I keep this channel on all day.

I'm still working on photos for my earrings. I've got the hanging black backgrounds done and am trying to do the arty ones. I haven't quite got them like I want them. I'll play around with them tomorrow.

Oh yeah, and my manager removed me from the distribution list as I asked without a fight. I'm glad of that - at least I won't have to clean out my mailbox so often. And people won't think I still work there. on the downside, I won't get invited to as much team stuff - but then, I haven't been to one of those in months anyways.

Sunday, March 18, 2007

Home again

I'm back in Waterloo for a few days. Ian's dad is much better than he was a week ago, which is good.

I'm still working on new photos for the stuff for my etsy store, but I got tired and had to stop. My back is extremely woogly, which means that it feels really funny. Moving helps make it feel less funny, but I have to move continuously - it's quite a sight, as I'm sure you can imagine. I think I have restless leg syndrome in my back. Blah. It happens when I'm really tired like I am now. Since it's so close to bedtime, I'll just go to bed now. I've got a lot to do tomorrow.

Saturday, March 17, 2007

More earrings

I slept until 3pm today!!!!! I haven't slept that late in quite some time, and I'm surprised that I did. I guess I was pretty tired.

I have made quite a few pairs of earrings over the last few days - I think I have 12 pairs now. That's good. I'm still playing around with the photography before I go ahead and start adding more pieces to my etsy store. At least one picture will have a black background, at least one will be with the earrings lying down, and at least one will have them dangling. At least one will have the regular grey background to better show the colours of the stones and to show the earrings in a more natural light. I'm also thinking of making an arty picture with a mirror and black fabric.

I'd like to get a small thing on which to photograph the earrings. I want it to have two poles that are stable and set vertically with markings on them at the same places relative to the bottom of the poles. I also want them to have a horizontal bar parallel to the floor and adjustable. I don't really know how to make it, but I can sort of see it in my head. I'd like the parts of this display thing to be black.

Even if I don't get this stuff set up, I'll start adding new earrings to the site on Monday.

I'm also thinking of ways that I can make necklaces. I can finally see some of them in my head :) I'll get one of those Bead Design Boards as I think I need one - it'll help to make the necklaces as I have trouble figuring out the spacing.

Friday, March 16, 2007

Work and play

My work mailbox ended up full again today. It's a pain when my mailbox runs out of space because I actually have to log into work, open my mail, and sort of read the messages. It takes about three months for my mailbox to get full, which is simply too frequent. The problem is that I'm on a distribution list that gets a TON of mail. There is auto-generated mail, there is mail from each person in the group to other development groups with the development group cc'ed, and there is mail from other groups to the whole distribution list because they don't know who to write to. In other words, I get a lot of mail that I don't care about since I'm not working.

Honestly, I don't much care about what's going on there right now. I cleaned out my mailbox by deleting ALL of my messages except for a couple of personal threads. Even if I went back to that same group at some point (which is highly unlikely), none of those messages are going to mean anything to me then so there's no point keeping them. On Monday I will ask my manager/director to remove me from this distribution list. They kept me on the distribution list originally because we all thought that I was going back to work soon. I don't expect to run into any problems; it's not like I'm going back anytime soon, after all. Hopefully they'll agree with me.

On a more fun note, I have been playing around with my photo box using a black velveteen background. I need Ian's help with the camera because I don't completely understand how to use it and change the different settings. He's a good helper :) The pictures on the black background (see an example here) look elegant in a way that they don't on my etsy site, especially if the earrings have crystals. The edges are more defined and sharper and prettier. However, the pictures don't quite show the true colours of the stones that I'm using; they're much lighter and more translucent through the middle.

I think that there's a place for these black background pictures in my store - it may be that I use a black background for the arty picture and the light grey background for the hanging picture. We'll see. I'll also have to figure out what to do for the picture showing the scale of the earrings. What do you think? I'm looking for a lego man....

Thursday, March 15, 2007

Shopping adventures

I was able to go to Fabricland today to pick up some fabric remnants. I'm thinking of taking earring photos against a black velvety background, and I got almost a whole meter of cotton velveteen for only $3.50! I also got some good remnants that can be used for purse linings and outer purse fabrics. I was very happy with my purchases.

I also stopped at Winners. As you may know, there's a promotion on right now where they're getting is more upscale designers than usual in only eight stores. One of the sort of nearby Winners has these designers, and I stopped in today to see what they had. They didn't have that much, unfortunately. I was really disappointed at how messy things were. I was in there at about 2pm and there was a lot of stuff in the dressing room that hadn't been put away. Some of the designer stuff was half off of the hangers and looked sloppy. There were shoes spread out all over the place. Things were in the wrong places. I've never seen the store so messy; I don't know whether it's because they're getting people coming in from all over the place who disrespect the clothes, or because the staff are bad.

Either way, I'm not so inclined to shop at this particular Winners so much. That's sad, because it used to be one of my favourites; they had a great selection of petite clothes and small shoes. I think I'll email and complain about the condition of the store.

Wednesday, March 14, 2007

Earring pictures

I had another fairly relaxing day today; I made some earrings, did some dishes, and watched some tv. I'm liking this life very much :) One of these days I'll take pictures of my new earrings and then post them.

Someone suggested that it would be a good idea to indicate the size of each pair of earrings by reference to some common element. Ian has previously suggested that I take pictures of the earrings with lego men (so that they look giant-sized), but somehow I'm not sure that that is right for my target market :) I haven't sat down and defined my target market yet, but I'm pretty sure that those in it wouldn't appreciate earrings over lego men the way Ian would.

I've also thought about posting some kind of arty picture of each pair of earrings. I'm not really sure what would be best. I welcome your suggestions on both the arty picture and the common object idea. I don't always feel creative about those sorts of things :) Thanks!

Tuesday, March 13, 2007

A normal Tuesday

I was really glad that I went to my Spirituality and Healing group today. I felt so much better after I spent time with that group - there's something about being there that soothes me. We're still working on The Secret. We covered the method by which you can get anything you want. That method is also called the "creative process", and consists of three steps:
  1. Ask - ask for what you want. Write a letter to yourself in the present tense saying something like "I am so happy and grateful now that I [have the things that I want]".
  2. Believe - believe it will happen. Know that it doesn't matter how it happens; accept that it will. Recognize disappointment and replace it with unwavering faith.
  3. Receive - feel the way you will feel when the thing you want arrives. Be happy. We live in a feeling universe; what you give it what you'll get. Imagine receiving the thing you want and imagine the feelings you'll feel.
It's kind of interesting, although I'm still wary of it.

I made some earrings today - yay! I'd put together some bead combinations before and I'm working through those so that I can move on to my new beads. I'm excited to be making more stuff - I haven't made anything much while I was waiting for wire, and I've found that I miss making things.

Monday, March 12, 2007

A lazy day

After doing so much last week, I knew that this week would be much less full of stuff. Today I did practically nothing; I slept until noon, tidied up a bit, and thought about my next purse. Both places from which I order stuff are having a sale, and so I ordered some bugle beads from the one place and really cheap strands of semi-precious beads from the other. The second place actually has emeralds, sapphire, and rubies!!!! I have no idea what I would ever do with gems like that, but it's good to know that I could get them if I wanted.

Other than that, I kicked back and didn't do much. I watched Singin' in the Rain on tv - a classic movie; I am in love with TCM and have that on practically all the time. As I've mentioned before, I am a sucker for old movies. Having a channel that shows them all the time, uninterrupted by commercials, is my idea of heaven.

Speaking of tv, Project Catwalk Season Two is debuting on Life/Slice. I LOVE Kelly Osbourne as the host!!!! She's awesome, and way better than a model. She looks deliciously evil when they trick the contestants in one or another way :) I've no idea why the channel is changing names. They're marketing differently, too, saying that it's like a dirty secret to watch Slice and likening it to a vice. I don't get it. I think they're marketing to me, and I don't get it. Maybe if/when they change their programming lineup I'll get it.

Sunday, March 11, 2007

My love of design

I spent most of the day relaxing. I didn't get much done; I watched curling and thought about some new designs and stuff. I've got the initial sketches done for the next purse design - I'm very excited. I think that I will try and incorporate actual amethyst stones in the design since I'll be using amethyst and purple seed beads.

I'm not quite finished my other purse. I have cut out the inside of the purse and have partially glued the outside. I was waiting for the glue to dry; next I'll have to finish the gluing and finish it up. I hope it fits in the pre-made frame. That will be tricky. I can't wait to finish that purse (because I love it every time I see it) and to start the next one (because I love the idea of it). Of course if I'm working on a commissioned purse then I won't do the next beaded purse until the commission is over.

I do so love designing things.

Saturday, March 10, 2007

Bead show

I went to the bead show with my friend and we had a great time! I bought a LOT of beads - way too many, some might say :) I am choosing to think of it this way: I had a budget that I was going to stick to, as I was only going to spend a certain amount. However, my generous friends gave me other money towards my jewelry-making, and I spent that money, too. The total amount I spent was actually less than my budgeted amount plus the amount that my friends gave me. So I didn't spend too much at all :)

I took a picture of all the beads and stuff that I bought; it's here. Does it seem like a lot when it's all laid out like that? I also bought an introductory book on basic jewelry techniques. I've got an idea for a necklace in my head and I needed to know how to properly construct one. Earrings are comparatively easier. If you want me to make something for you out of something I bought, please let me know.

I'm so excited!!!! I wish that I could sit here and make earrings and stuff, but I don't have my things with me. I had thought about bringing my things to Mississauga, but when I clip very small pieces of wire, they sometimes go flying. That would be very bad for the dog here, to have little tiny bits of wire in the carpet. I did get a Wire Winding Kit as an early birthday present, so I think I'll play with that until it's time to go to bed :)

Friday, March 09, 2007

One of those days

I've definitely overdone it over the last few days, and I'm paying for it now. We had to get up really early for our annual doctor's appointments in Mississauga. My doctor finished the disability forms; in the spot where it said "return to work plan" he put "n/a" and he listed my condition as "guarded" everywhere. Which I think means "not stable", which we already knew I was. Still, to see it in writing was hard.

Then the two of us were tired and that, coupled with the fact that the juggling festival starts tomorrow, means that we were both cranky. Ian got a big nap in the afternoon, but my nap was much smaller. It wasn't long enough, I'm afraid.

The Femara makes me clumsy, and when I'm tired I can be very clumsy. Well, I'm tired and so I fell at curling. I didn't hurt myself, but I did fall again. Sigh. I almost fell a second time, too, but managed to stay on my feet.

We were supposed to go for dinner and to watch the Brier on tv, but Ian's mom called us and asked if we could come to Mississauga again. So here we are. I guess I felt rushed or something when we were getting ready and I forgot tons of stuff - my pills, my undergarments (I realized this on the way out of town and we stopped at Sears), and the makeup I'd bought earlier today. I felt so stupid; I can't even pack to go away for a couple of days without forgetting crucial items.

So I've had a meltdown and now I'm looking forward to going to bed. I'm very excited about the bead show tomorrow; I'm still going and my friend is still coming with me. It just takes some additional planning, but it'll be fun.

Thursday, March 08, 2007

A short day

Some friends of mine collected money for me to help out my jewelry business. I'm so very touched and honoured; I can't believe that people would be giving money to help me. I feel very special, that so many people are looking to help me. I've sold a lot of earrings, don't forget :) I am going to a bead show on Saturday in Toronto, and I will be buying things there. I'm so grateful for everyone's help.

I managed to sleep in until almost 1:30pm - yay! I'm still tired, but we have to be up extra early tomorrow. We both have our annual physical appointments. Blah. I'll be glad to get that over with. I did manage to do some cleaning.

I also finished the accent part of the purse I'm working on. Now I just have to serge around the edges, glue the fabric to the body, glue lining fabric to the inside, and put the frame on. That last task will be tricky; I hope it works. I'm very pleased with the flower accent I made, though; if this purse doesn't work out, then I can use it somewhere else. It's got black feathers arranged in a flower-shape with two rings of tulle over it. I sewed Swarovski crystals to the tulle to give it sparkle. For the center of the flower thing, I used two onyx beads, three hematite beads, and two Swarovski rounds. I think it looks nice :)

Wednesday, March 07, 2007

An unexpected day

I had planned to sleep in today because we were up late yesterday, and we expected to be up late today. However, the roof people were there and were trying to get the ice dams broken. We've had a lot of snow fall lately and there were some ginormous icicles out there! Anyways, they showed up stomping around at about 9am which woke me up. There was no sleeping through that noise!

I sent out some earrings that someone had bought (thanks!) and posted some more earrings on my etsy store. I also reviewed and approved the proof for my business cards; they will be printed by Friday. Yay! I talked to a few people about the problems with the young women's group as well. The issue will be discussed at a meeting tomorrow. I hope there's some resolution there.

After my Well-fit, we had planned to go to the Brier. Unfortunately, Ian's dad isn't feeling well and so Ian's mom asked if we would come to Mississauga, which we did. This means that we weren't able to go to the Brier tonight, which is unfortunate. Oh well - I got to go last night, anyways, and we can watch it on tv. I might be able to go ather year.

I don't think we've got any big plans tomorrow; I have to do some cleaning as we've got a couple of people staying with us over the weekend.

OH!!!! This weekend is the UW juggling festival. The show will be on Saturday night at Hagey Hall at 7pm. Tickets are $5 at the door. Apparently the show is supposed to be really good this year :)

Tuesday, March 06, 2007

Second long day

I started off today with my Spirituality and Healing group. We are going to be looking at The Secret, which is really just the spiritual law of attraction (if you want something to happen, visualize it happening and it will come to you). It isn't an awful idea, because it makes people more positive, but I do have some reservations about it. If I draw positive things, then I also draw negative things to me; so did I draw the cancer? How about the recurrence? Or the metastasis? Hmmmmm. Still, I do have a belief that since you catch more flies with honey than with vinegar, so I'm more likely to get what I want if I'm positive. So I'll stay positive and hope that things go my way.

BTW, we watched the first part of The Secret DVD in the group. It's very dramatic and hyped. Clearly, they are not marketing to me. The whole thing is not marketing to me, because, well, I don't like the idea that it's been covered up for ages and all of that. Also, they focus on material things (money! houses! great jobs!) and that just seems so crass. If you're going to look into this, I'd recommend that you read the book instead.

I also talked to our facilitator about the problems with the young women's group. She took me to talk to the executive director and will be discussing the problem at a meeting on Thursday. I'm very glad that she's on my side; I have a great deal of respect for her, and I'm glad that this is in her capable hands. I'm looking forward to seeing what happens.

Later on, we went to the Brier. It's in Hamilton this year, which is about an hour's drive from our place. To get to Copps Coliseum (the arena), we went through this cool mall. We walked through one part that had clearly had stores in it before, but which was completely boarded up with community-made murals. That reminded me of downtown malls in Edmonton; there's something I like about a mall like that. There's so much old promise and hope there. I wonder what used to be there, and what things used to be like when the stores were open. I got a glimpse of a store name - Marvela - and I wondered what it was. Had Ian not been with me, I would have taken a long, long time to walk that hallway, because I would have stopped to imagine all sorts of histories for it.

There is something very powerful about being at a sporting event that is one of the best in its class featuring the best in the country (or the world). I imagine people feel like that at the Olympics, too. Being in the same area as athletes, and close enough to see them clearly, is exhilarating. Once I got over that, I enjoyed the games. None of them were very close, but they were good.

We will be going back to see tomorrow night's draw. They have a souvenir shop; if any of you are interested in getting a vest, down jacket, windbreaker, golf shirt, or fleece hoodie (all branded with the Brier logo, of course), please let me know. Each are maybe $15-20 more than you might pay in a reasonably good sports store. The women's vest was $60; the women's down jacket was $150. I don't really remember the colours. There are also small souvenirs like glasses and stuff. If you want something small, please let me know.

Monday, March 05, 2007

A long day

It's been a long day to start off a long week. I met with some other people who go to the young women's support group as well. There's something missing in the group these days; it isn't the same as it used to be, and we did some brainstorming about what could be done to solve this problem. I'll talk to someone tomorrow about who we need to present these ideas to.

Then I took my business cards in to be printed (I should have them by Friday), had well-fit, which is getting to be a harder workout, and I had bellydancing. I also managed to tidy up the house a bit and make a few pairs of earrings that I'll post tomorrow. Now I'm up waiting for Ian to come home; he's at the Brier with a friend. I didn't go because I didn't want to miss bellydancing class.

I may have also purchased a dress today. I'm not supposed to be buying anything, and so I won't commit to having bought a dress. If I had bought a dress, it would have been black jersey with ivory curved lines on it (in a random pattern), with a deep V neckline, 3/4 length sleeves, ruching around the mid-section, and an a-line skirt to the knee. It would have looked fabulous on me, although it would have needed some hemming.

Sunday, March 04, 2007

More sales!

I've had another sale (with possible commission) and another pending sale....this is so unbelievable! It feels like you all were just waiting for me to start selling the stuff I make :) Of course I'm thrilled - I'm honoured that all of you are supporting me in this business.

We spent quite a bit of time putting together a business card today. Ian has been very helpful (even when I get frustrated with new software that doesn't behave like I think it should), and I'll take it to be printed tomorrow. That way I can include a few with every order so that people can give them to their friends.

This week is going to be busy - we'll be traveling to Hamilton for a few nights to see Brier draws and the Waterloo Juggling festival is this weekend. We have one person staying with us, so we'll have to actually clean the house. This is not a bad thing, but cleaning gets in the way of creating :)

Saturday, March 03, 2007

Cleared parking lot

I don't think I told you about how our old car was trapped by a snowbank that extended across 4 parking spaces. I think 3 or 4 of us tenants complained and so the company that does the clearing brought out a big CAT and cleared the parking lot. Now we have this wall of snow that's about 12 or 15 feet high - it's like a mountain. If I was a kid, I'd so be climbing it :)

I guess the snow-removal company had talked to our landlord representative and had recommended moving the snow in this way. Our landlord representative refused to allocate the money, saying that the snow would melt. This is before the bad weather we had, so she should have known hat more snow would follow.

Anyways, it's clear now. Yay!

OH ! I got the stainless steel earring hooks and ball and posts things. Now every earring on my etsy store can be shipped with either hook at no extra charge. I hope to get some titanium ones in, too. And some clip-ons.

I think I'm about to fall asleep now..... sleep well, all of you! :)

Friday, March 02, 2007

Stuff with which to make earrings

I've sold 8 pairs of earrings now. 8!!!!!!! Of course it's all people I know who've bought them - and I appreciate every single person's support with this. It's hard to say "here are things I've created. Will you please buy them?", and I'm glad that you all are helping me. To keep selling earrings, I either need other people I know to buy them, or I need people I don't know to buy them. I'm trying to make a name for myself on the etsy forums, but it's hard because there's so much traffic and it's hard to keep up.

I got some more stuff in today. Among other things, I got some amethyst rounds and teardrop shapes, some bloodstone (aka heliotrope; the stuff I got has no red flecks, I'm afraid), some sodalite that I LOVE!!!!, and some more Swarovski pearls. I can hardly wait to make more stuff. I've picked out things for two more pairs of earrings.... this is so exciting! I think I basically have a base palette of beads from which I can make earrings, so I shouldn't need too much more except for findings. I should get myself a business card of some kind, too, I guess.

There is a bead show next weekend, though, and I expect that I will purchase some things there. I will only get things I love, of course :)

I can't believe how much money I've spent on all this. I've made up some of what I spent, of course, because I've sold some earrings. I feel very much called to create these things; it's like I have to do it. Hopefully things will work out with this. If not, then I can try to sell off the beads I don't need to make some of the money back.

Update: publish as Chantelle :)

Thursday, March 01, 2007

How many earrings can I make in one day?

My surgical steel hooks arrived today, so I can offer all of my earrings in either sterling silver or surgical steel. The default will be to ship the earrings with sterling silver unless the customer requests otherwise. Of course I can ship a pair of surgical steel ear hooks afterwards if necessary.

There was a big storm today and so I didn't go anywhere. I ended up making a ridiculous number of pairs of earrings. I made four that I posted on my etsy store, and I made six other pairs while watching tv with Ian. I'll post those tomorrow. :) I love all of the earrings I made today, but I think I quite like Elegance in purple, which is a Swarovski crystal on top of an amethyst briolette. They would be perfect for an evening out, I think. They're simple but beautiful, I think.

I meant to practice my bellydancing but I got all tied up in making earrings. :) I will practice tomorrow, though. Even though I'm not in the recital, I want to perform the dance well. I think I won't make any earrings tomorrow - I've definitely done enough today, methinks.