Monday, December 29, 2008

Have I Been Living in a Cave???

The fam with their favorite new Christmas toy--hey whatever it takes for togetherness, right? A little high five on completing a 'gig' and getting an easy to please,lol. So, my daughter talked me into getting Guitar Hero World Tour for Christmas as a "family game"--I must have been living in a cave for the past couple of years, because I never heard of it...but she said we'd all have a blast playing it and she's right! We're all obsessed with our own little family band--the VonVogi. Even Dad has joined in the fun, in spite of that fact that he thought it didn't have a chance at capturing his interest--until he tried it once and now he's as hooked as the rest of us!!! This spans the age gap in our family--we all wanna play and it gets us all together laughting and playing and spending time just hangin' together. It's even better than all sitting glued to the TV watching 'Lost'! Here's a picture of the three hardcore 'band' members-hubby, daughter and son. My daughter-in-law and I were just hanging out by the fire being 'groupies' for this set---we took a break to watch the rest of the fam 'rock', lol. Don't knock it 'til you've tried it--this game is a blast!

Saturday, December 20, 2008

More Merry, Merry Christmas

Okay, I know it looks like all I have is funky ornate antiques...but really only the two pieces and the rest of my living room is fairly clean and straightforward. This piece is in my entryhall and filled with Italian woodcarvings by Anri and Dolfi...great to bring out in the wintertime because they are so heavy and in warm rich colors. They'll go back in the box after this until next year and I won't look so rococo around here!! daughter is having an 'ugly sweater' party tonight with all her friends at our house and tomorrow I'm playing the piano at church for the choir....then it's just family, family, family for the rest of the week! happy to have all the 'have-to's' out of the way and the 'want to's' my full time 'responsibility' starting tomorrow afternoon!!!! Christmas puts a BIG smile on my face!

Friday, December 19, 2008

Merry, Merry, Merry Christmas

Can I say the hustle and bustle of the holidays is keeping me very busy! Oh happy day, my son and his wife got in late Wednesday evening from Washington D.C. and that's the best gift of all--now the whole fam will be together here for the next two weeks. We would love to be closer to extended family, but having the children home for the holidays is a real treat and we are going to savour each and every day together! No new jewelry, but I'm thinking about it...hopefully after the first of the year I can kick into gear, but for now I'm just enjoying family time and holiday cheer! Merry, merry Christmas to your and yours...or happy holidays if you celebrate in an alternative way. We have snow in our southern California mountains that I can see looking out my window...that's a rare treat too...and just a little chilly outside as well!

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

The Countdown Begins...

A holiday bracelet with some of Jena Fulcher's wonderful lampwork, sterling silver and swarovski crystals! Can you believe it's just 15 days until Christmas? I feel a tad behind the curve this year--I haven't even made holiday goodies, but the house is finally decorated except for the tree. We have a fragrant 10' noble fir just waiting to be covered in lights and glass ornaments--maybe tonight will be the night to get that done.

Monday, December 1, 2008

The Visitors

A girl and her puppy--doesn't it put a smile on your face?
Someone found my secret garden and filled it with laughter and play. My daughter and her Australian shepard came down into my quiet space for a visit and some playful wandering. Notice the matching scarves...I guess that is the sign of a well dressed puppy, at least one autumn afternoon! I gladly put away my book and quiet repose--for an afternoon of mother-daughter-puppy time!

Thursday, November 27, 2008

Herend hand-painted tureen with lemon finial...I love to set a beautiful table on Thanksgiving--a favorite thing. HAPPY THANKSGIVING! This is a wonderful holiday without bounds of creed, politics or location. I'm so grateful for the blessings in my life today and hope you take a moment to reflect on your blessings as well. There is much to concern us in the world today, but just a moments reflection can put them in the proper perspective. Just for today, count your many blessings one by one--it may help you to see things differently tomorrow and beyond, as well. We tend to get caught up in the 'thick of thin things' and forget those people and things that matter most. Smile--life is beautiful!

Hugs to all!

Friday, November 14, 2008

Oh Fractious Days

My secret garden--a respite of peace on a difficult day.......
Oh fractious days! I feel like I'm watching a mob of two year olds throwing temper tantrums because they didn't get their way, so now they want to change the rules again! Freedom of Speech is a wonderful liberty, but roving mobs of hatemongers defacing and damaging private property, threatening businesses, churches and individuals, and generally throwing a 'hissy fit' ,as my mother used to call it, is wrong and irresponsible. People can disagree without being disagreeable, acting with dignity and restraint. I can't help but think that these gangs of intimidators need a mother and father to put them into time out, until they settle down, stop being bullies in the schoolyard, and learn to behave like responsible adults and good citizens...well, I'm not going to hold my breath on that happening anytime soon!
I'm not Henny Penny and the sky isn't falling...but it's sad, really, and my sorrow, watching from the sidelines such unbecoming vitriol spew forth, has really brought me down this week..but, I've had my good cry and I'm going go do something beautiful, nice and uplifting...and maybe make something of beauty from my stash to brighten my outlook. I'm also going to remember that 'pretty is as pretty does', and to look at the glass 'half full' and do the best I can to make the world a beautiful place of peace, serenity, comfort and love. Bah humbug to fractious days and fractious people!

Saturday, November 8, 2008

Spectacular Saturday

Calm, sunny and warm today--a perfect Saturday for football! I might have mentioned before that my husband's family are huge USC fans--an over 70 year tradition in their family! So, it's off this afternoon to the USC-CAL game. The leaves on the oak trees that line our street are beginning to change, and my grape vines are browning, but other than that everything is still green and lush. Autumn is very subtle here in Southern California--we'll call it autumn-lite!

Gee, I didn't mean to go a whole week without checking in to say hi! The early part of the week--Monday and Tuesday, I spent working on 'get out the vote' here in California, but the rest of the week I have no excuse. I just wasn't too productive. I'm not sure you'd call it a 'well deserved' rest, but I was definitely deflating after a pretty intense political season. I'm glad to step away from all the hub bub. One of the wonderful traditions here is the peaceful transfer of power especially given the diversity of opinions and the strong feelings about the candidates and issues. I love my beautiful country and wish our new president elect well. There have been so many promises to so many, it will be interesting to see how we move forward from the tumult.

Ah, yes, jewelry--that is why you come here...nothing new yet, but I hope to get a few pieces ready to share this next week. In the meantime here is a bracelet I made with USC colors to wear to the game. Beautiful boro from Kim of kimbeads, citrine and pearl dangles. Fight On!

Saturday, November 1, 2008

Rainy Saturday

Our pumpkins from last night--carving them is a family tradition we all look forward to!

We finally got a taste of autumn today with a windy, rainy day, and even some thunder and lightening--which we consider a rare treat along the coast of southern California. It wasn't quite a blustery day, but almost! My back yard is full of leaves and the dog and cat have been snuggled in the warm house all day, not at all interested in spending the afternoon outside and I couldn't agree more! My hubby and daughter went off to the coloseum to watch the USC Trojan's play football--it's that time of year, but I happily stayed behind with a cozy blanket and cup of hot cider for a lazy afternoon! I hope you are having just the kind of weekend you enjoy whatever that is. I'll try to have some new eye candy for you before this next week is over

Have you noticed that my blog has gotten several embellishments in the past couple of day? That is thanks to my friend Tiffany McCoy. You might know her for her fabulous lampwork--she's a superstar with reactive glass, and also a wizard on the computer. She's set me up with all sorts of widgets and I'm feeling much happier now about moving my blog and starting over. She has some pretty snazzy blogs of her own and a beautiful website--check out her goodies at (see that silverglass seashell--I have some of those!)

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Sunny Wednesday

Once Upon a Dream--artisan lampwork and oxidized sterling linked bracelet with rose quartz, pink amethyst and turquoise briolette charms. $132.00

I know it's sleeting and snowing in some parts of the country today, so I'll count my blessings for another lovely sunny day here in Cali! The winds have calmed down and the weather is just gorgeous. Yesterday I got to play with beads for a little while, so I picked up some new favorites from my stash and I just love the results--how can you go wrong with some of Suzanne Noordewier's beads, right? Her stringer control is a marvel, her color combinations divine and it was such fun to combine her lampwork with some hammered oxidized sterling and wirewrap gemstones to the finished design for that sumptuous finishing touch.

I'm off today to help a friend decorate our church 'cultural hall' for a fun Halloween Trunk or Treat party this evening--a special evening for all the kids in the neighborhood to come have fun and get some treats. This time of year seems to kick into high gear with Halloween and not slow down until mid-January when I finally recover from all the fun!!!

One more thing on my mind, Tuesday is election day and here in California there are also something like 11 propositions on the ballots to vote on. I can't tell you how happy I will be when the campaigning is over--my mail box is crammed full of literature and half my calls are political campaigning--on one level is seems like a nuisance, but in truth I think how blessed we are to have the right to vote on candidates and policies--it will be good to be done, one way or another, but I'm grateful for the opportunity it gives me to study and work for good causes. So if you're a citizen and registered, may I just take a moment to ask you to remember to parents taught me that I can't complain about what's going on if I don't exercise my right to VOTE--it's a privilege with a responsibility--so just DO IT!

Monday, October 27, 2008

Monday, Monday....

Sterling slider bracelet with lampwork by Heidi Brodersen & sterling beads, a pair of clipbead stoppers and clasp. $146 US

Spent some time today editing my old blog, saving and removing photographs of sold's looking really lonely over there...but I still can't quite eliminate it entirely yet--old habits die hard! I did finish a bracelet I started awhile back when I purchased a biagi bracelet. I wanted to use some large holed beads I had in my stash and some beautiful sterling beads, but then I realized I hadn't purchase any stopper beads to hold things on the bracelet, so everytime I opened it, everthing slide right off. Well, I finally purchase some of the biagi stopper beads and finished this design off--it's for a rather small wrist at 7 1/4 inches --it needs 6 inch wrist or smaller to fit comfortably, but I do love the finished look!

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

It's Already Wednesday!!!!

Here's a picture of the custom bracelet I made yesterday--I love the colors! Don't you just love Vickie Miller's flip flop with that yummy lavendar seashell by Tiffany McCoy and a sterling palm tree on sterling chain--a simple delight! And it's off to it's new home!

The week is flying by! Yesterday morning I had a lovely trip to the dentist (NOT) and now I have sparkling clean teeth. In the afternoon I got all my orders from the weekend shipped, seven packages worth, with three international shipments! There were a few bracelets to size and I made a quick flipflop charm bracelet by request as well--it feels great to have everything shipped and off my worry list. Surely I'll have time to play now. The Santa Ana winds kicked up again this morning and will be with us until Friday night---keep your fingers crossed that we won't have another outbreak of fires this week--I just got all the ashe cleaned up from the last episode and the worst of it is a family friend's home back in the canyons burned to the ground! A little ashe is nothing when you think of the families who lost so much in the fires--keep them in your thought's and prayers!

Happy Wednesday--hopefully I'll get into the studio this afternoon for some design time!

Friday, October 17, 2008

Moving right along....

Hi! Well, it's moving aol journal that's been home for the past few years is closing down and it's time to find a new home to keep y'all updated on what's up with me. I'll need a little time to figure out how to use this new format and get some eye candy posted for you as soon as possible. In the meantime, thanks for coming stopping by and check back often to see what's new. I've got an etsy and galleries at as well as, so there's a place to start if this is your first introduction to who I am.

Until October 31, I have a clearance sale over at my old aol journal site--drop by to see what's going, going, gone. Here's to my old home and the new