Saturday, January 30, 2010

Valentine Giveaway!

I made an extra brooch from this vintage image to give away to someone in time to either give away or wear on Valentine's Day. It features an adorable boy and girl surrounded by roses with "Be My Valentine" at the bottom. I have added superfine glitter in pink and green to the image for extra sparkle. All you have to do is the following:
1) Visit my shop--Glass Bead Treasures--return here and leave a comment telling me one thing that you like (and an email address if it is not in your blog profile). P.S. Thank you, Susie, yes, this is for international friends as well. ; )
2) For an extra entry, blog about the giveaway (feel free to use the image above) and come back and leave another comment saying that you did it.
Easy! I'll draw a name sometime during the day on February 3 and will mail it out as soon as I have an address.

Friday, January 29, 2010

Woolly Sheep Brooch

I had been thinking of doing a sheep with tiny pearly-white beads for some time now...and finally just went ahead and did it--just in time for spring! Perhaps my meandering thoughts toward spring is what got me motivated. Whatever the case, I had fun working on this little woolly friend and hope you like him too.

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Homeschool Language Trip if Interested

Surround your family with language. By taking them there!

Travel to Paris, Madrid and Barcelona with Homeschoolers from all over the United States. Join Rosetta Stone Homeschool, Heart of the Matter and Fusefly on the inaugural Homeschool Language Learning and Networking Trip August 2-11, 2010. Become immersed in new lands, explore history, culture, art and community. And truly speak to the world. For more details visit

Hurry, registration for the trip ends February 15, 2010.

For your chance to win a Rosetta Stone language product, please visit Heart of the Matter. Entries are being accepted until February 1st.

Monday, January 25, 2010

Snowflake Swap Goodies from Germany

First of all, I'd like to thank all who participated in the Snowflake Swap. It was my first time to host a swap. I was determined that no one would NOT get a swap package--and everyone who participated followed through on their words, were wonderful communicators, and sent their packages. Thank you to each of you. I hope you had fun.
I swapped packages with Stefanie from Germany (click HERE to visit her beautiful blog). I was very excited to swap with her....and little did I know how incredibly wonderful a package she would send me! I sucked in my breath upon opening the box and barely breathed while going through what she sent! Everything is absolutely beautiful. Her attention to detail in how she packaged everything, in what she made and chose, and in every part was amazing. I am so thankful. It definitely made up for the swaps in the past when I never received anything from my swap partners. Thank you soooo much Stefanie!
This is how beautifully she packed the box.
She knows I love tea...and was sweet enough to include a few bags for me--along with a beautiful tag. I can't wait for a cup.
This is an adorable jar (even the jar stuck to the theme of blues and whites) of glitter. The glitter looks across between snow and sugar. It is sparkly and beautiful.
She included a few yummy treats that I MAY share with my husband! The envelope that had her kind note was even a snow-themed card in a snow-themed envelope.
The snowflake ornament with "snow" in the center is painted white and even has fake snow on it--I really like it. She included sweet-faced snowman ornaments and a snow-white dishcloth (that is so pretty I almost to use it).
I thought this ice skate was a great idea. Stefanie made this ornament, and I will treasure it.
These are mitten napkins and will be used for a special tea sometime.
I felt like a little kid as I eagerly opened this little decorated matchbox. First of all, I think the matchbox is beautiful--complete with paper lace and a glittery snowflake. In it were these brilliant blue beads (mmmm, wonder how she knew I liked beads?) and these little crocheted flowers. I'm thrilled.
Don't you love how she packaged everything? She put such time and effort into it all, and I appreciate and enjoyed it immensely.
She included more little treats including a pretty picture frame, snowflake embellishments, snowflake ornaments made out of a loofah-type material, and absolutely gorgeous blue mother of pearl buttons.
The final items are these mirrored snowflake ornaments. I loved the packaging they were in actually, so I didn't take them out for the picture. They are just exquisite. spoiled me! Thank you again, so much, for everything. It was a fabulous swap!

Saturday, January 23, 2010

They Came....They Went

I had promised to show you my other antiquing find from last weekend which I put up for sale in my Lollishop/Etsy shop. Well, it was this little box of Dennison's bluebird seals. It didn't last long in my shop before someone snatched them up (many thanks to them!). I thought they were darling...and apparently others did as well. How can anyone resist a bluebird? The Valentine collage tag went as well (and thank you to them!). My husband indicated I put too low a price on it! Regardless, I'm thankful that someone liked it...and hope they will be pleased when it arrives at their doorstep and they can see it in "real life." It sure was fun to do! Mmmmm...perhaps in my spare time (whatever that is) I could work on another. I'm now eager to see what other challenges Sadie at Lollishops comes up with in the next few months. She certainly has some great ideas.

Thursday, January 21, 2010

The Invisible Woman

Have you seen this YouTube clip--The Invisible Woman? Do you ever feel "invisible"...sort of unimportant? This was an inspiration and a good reminder to me about what is important. I know it will be a blessing to you and a worth-watch. It was to me.

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Lollishops Bits and Pieces Collage Group Challenge

Well, I couldn't resist this challenge (see post about it here) because of several reasons. First is because it is for Valentines' Day. Another is because I love little itty bits and pieces of things--anything in miniature appeals to me. Next, I couldn't resist a challenge and wanted to participate. Also, embellishing is just SO fun. Finally, I wanted to try my hand at doing some "paper art"--something I have little experience with and know little about. Now, scrapbooking and paper art is something that I don't do and haven't done much of in the past. I don't know all of the details of what type of paper to use, what kind of glue to use, whether to seal over your work or not, or how the details should be put together. Regardless of my lack of knowledge, I decided to do this and had a ball doing it. I really do respect people who make tags and scrapbook goodies all the time, since I had glue and scraps of paper all over me and my kitchen. I know this doesn't look as professional as many you may see, but this is my version!
I decided to do a tag. We're supposed to put these in our Lollishop/on Etsy...but, do people really buy things like this? I have no clue what to charge. These certainly aren't my area of expertise. I worry about the embellishments and bits falling off. Anyway, the size of the tag is 4" x just short of 2-1/2" . I divided the main part of the tag into 8 main sections and glued different coordinating papers into each section. I trimmed out each section with glued sections of "pearl" trim....then embellished away. You know me, I LOVE to embellish.
Since I love tea and roses and sparkles, these had to be a part of the collage.
Then I finished off the tag with a bright pink organdy ribbon with a little lace flower and my signature and date on the back just to make it extra special.

Sunday, January 17, 2010

Antiquing and Thrift Store Hopping

Since Mom and Dad have moved closer--much closer--to us, it has been great fun "buzzing" about with Mom. During the short time that they have been around, we have hit thrift stores and antique stores, and it has been such fun. Sometimes just Mom and I go, and it has been nice to have a little "breather", so to speak--to have a few hours away, from the kids who I am around basically 24/7 (remember, they are homeschooled). While I love my children dearly, it is nice once in awhile to look at things in an antique shop and actually be able to concentrate on what I'm looking at! Anyway, yesterday Mom and I discovered a new antique mall where I found this little heart box and fell in love! It is vintage and was made by Dennison and even had the jeweler's box that the heart box came in with it. It is a ring box and is in great condition. I am just imagining what the ring was that came in this box and how the recipient reacted and what the occasion was. Although I'm trying to resell it, I won't mind if it doesn't sell because I DO like it. While antiquing I also found another little box of treasures, but I'll have to post about that at another time after I get a good picture (too cloudy out today).

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Givaway Package Arrived....

....from Linda of A Swap for All Seasons. Thank you, Linda!
What goodies! What inspiration! I have been contemplating doing the Lollishop's "Group Challenge" of creating a "bits and pieces collage". Well, papery goodies are not my area so to speak, but I love paper and little things, and with Linda's goodies...I'm going to give it a try. I think I'll work on some tags. The red heart ribbon Linda tied the treasures up with was beautiful. I truly love and appreciate pretty ribbon.
Also, I felt like a little kid going through the tin of buttons Linda sent along. I love buttons, and there are some beauties here.
I'm tickled pink. Thanks again, Linda!

Sunday, January 10, 2010

Two New Valentine's Day Brooches

I've had fun working on two new brooches for Valentine's Day. One is more cute or fun and the other more Victorian and romantic. I'm working on new backgrounds as well. I figure winter is almost over (oh, don't burst my bubble and tell me we have at least two more months of it!), so it's time to "lighten up" a bit. I'm pleased with how they've turned out and have listed them today. Hope you like them!

A Box Full of Antique Beads

When my sister-in-law was visiting from New Zealand last fall, we talked a lot about beads and the ones I work with and the ones I use to decorate around my home...and, yes, the ones that I'm looking for. Well, while at an antique shop before she and my brother and their family headed back to New Zealand last week, she saw these beads, thought of me, and sent them. What a wonderful surprise! It is always a treat to find out that someone is thinking about me--and enough to actually spend money on me!
One thing I like about old beads is that, well, they actually look old. I like that old beads are slightly different in size and shape--they are not the precise exact-sized beads that one can buy from the store in those little tubes today (though I admit to preferring these when working on a piece of jewelry). Some of these beads are golden yellow and golden brown; others are orange-red to red with green leaves and metallic copper leaves. Other than the copper leaves, they are all glass and are gorgeous. These will go up in my home somewhere. I'll find the right places...and think of and pray for my dear sister-in-law when I look at them.

Saturday, January 9, 2010

Visit a French-inspired Giveaway

Visit My Petite Maison for a French-inspired giveaway. Who can resist this? Well, I couldn't. ; )

Thursday, January 7, 2010

Tiffany's Paper and Gem-Filled Windows

While in Chicago, I had really wanted to go to the Field Museum. They are having a special exhibit on "The Nature of Diamonds" (see here for details>>The Nature of Diamonds) full of information on diamonds and featuring many famous diamonds. Drool! However, just the exhibit was $30 per person plus the price of getting into the museum--definitely out of the budget. So, we went cheap and went to Tiffany's to have a look around. Everyone was so friendly there, and it was great fun to look at all that they had--especially those huge goodies in the back room! One thing that I greatly enjoyed was their window displays in miniature outside. I had difficulty adjusting the camera to the lighting unfortunately, but I think you can get the idea from the pictures above. Everything in the display was made of a thick white paper--some things were 2 dimensional (like the snowflakes outlining the oval of the shadowbox) and some were 3 dimensional. Then strategically and tastefully placed (of course) were gems and diamonds galore. I loved the diamond tennis bracelet on the edge of the ice skater's skirt and the brooch on the coach. Gorgeous--and you can't beat what we paid for enjoying the scenes!

Celebrating our 20th Wedding Anniversary

Well, I've been away from the computer for the past couple of days. January 5 was our 20th wedding anniversary. Grandpa and Gramma were willing to watch the kids, and we wanted to get away and do something special...but on a tight budget. Did you know that you really can get away to a big city and spend a night in a nice hotel relatively inexpensively? Ah, the joys of shopping around on the Internet for the best deals! We decided to go to Chicago since it isn't very far away from us. My husband found an incredible deal at the Sofitel (a French hotel) on and told them in the notes we were celebrating our 20th anniversary. Well, we not only got a room on the top level of the hotel but it was complete with well wishes from everyone and Evian water and chocolate covered strawberries in the room because of the occasion. (Oh, the deal even had a food voucher for breakfast the next morning). One direction of the view is above along with a picture of those strawberries. We were two blocks away from Michigan Avenue and walked and walked and window shopped. It was surreal and wonderful. We had gift cards and were able to have dinner at a nice restaurant that was across the street from the beautiful Bloomingdale's Home store. We had the top level of the restaurant to ourselves (the waiter said it was traditionally their slowest week of the year) and looked out to the beautiful architecture and stained-glass filled windows. The picture above does not give it justice. It has a Middle Eastern flavor to the windows and architecture and was gorgeous. We had a wonderful time without the guilt of spending a fortune, and I'm thankful for a nice, relaxed time with my husband. Most importantly I'm thankful for our marriage and these past 20 years being with my best friend.

Sunday, January 3, 2010

Have you Visited yet?

I like to look around on the Net for jewelry sites especially informational ones. I'm not sure how I discovered, but it has been a fun site that I look forward to visiting daily. There is jewelry and gemstone news on there (the part I find most interesting), fashion, and trends (like, did you know that the stone/color trend for 2010 is turquoise?). Also, to sweeten the deal, they have a sweepstakes EVERY day given away by sponsors that you can enter for a chance to win a piece of nice jewelry--most worth hundreds of dollars. No, I haven't won anything yet, but it's fun to see what is being offered (some pieces are just gorgeous) and to have the chance to try to win it. Also, if you are in the market to actually buy any jewelry (which I'm not--but it IS fun to just look), there are many offers and deals on this site too.