Friday, January 30, 2009

Snowshoeing at Hudson Pointe

It seems like a lot of times in the Lake George Region, once there is a decent snowfall for 'shoeing, an ice or rain storm comes along and ruins the quality of the snow. Sister and I were fortunate to have a weekend open and fresh snowfall earlier this month and decided to check out the trail at Hudson Pointe, per the suggestion of Roger Fulton's Cross Country Ski and Snowshoe Trails in the Lake George Region. It's a great book because all the trails are so close to where I live - I'm not into winter driving that much - and all the directions have been right on so far.

Were disappointed that we weren't the first ones on the trail on the fresh snow that morning, but it was a great workout anyway. The trail makes a semi-loop, part of it right along the Hudson! Sister and her husband actually had been there before, in warm weather. Beautiful sights, some small hills, and impossible to get lost!

I was excited to see that the Open Space Institute had done some work on the park, and their name was on the trail markers. OSI is an organization that protects scenic, natural, and historic landscapes to ensure public enjoyment, conserve habitats, and sustain community character in the Adirondacks, as well as many other places along the East Coast. For example, they did some work on the McIntyre Blast Furnace, MacNaughton Cottage, and the tower and cabin on Mt. Adams as mentioned in a previous post of mine.

The rest of my pictures can be found in my Flickr set.

Thursday, January 29, 2009

Special Invitation to a Huge Team Wide Sale


Come see a LIVE virtual TRUNK SHOW this Friday night!! On Friday Jan. 30th @ 9PM EST, where twenty-six talented Etsy shops from all over the world will be showcasing a select few of their items ONLINE in the GALLERY of the EtsyLabs! Sales and special offers will apply only to the EtsyBloggers TRUNK SHOW attendees!

Everyone is welcome to attend, so come and join the fun here:
on Friday Jan. 30th @ 9:PM EST.

You need an Etsy account to enter the trunk show, so if you don't have one, register here!
(It's really easy)

I will be offering FREE WORLD WIDE SHIPPING for all purchases made by trunk show attendees until Sunday, February 2, 2009 at 11:59pm Eastern Time. My promotional code will be given at the trunk show. The free shipping is in addition to my 10% Valentine's Day Sale which is ongoing for EVERYONE until Valentine's Day.

Monday, January 26, 2009

Picture Perfect...

...well, almost

I'd have to say that the majority of the site seeing my husband and I did in Key West during our recent vacation revolved around my new and improved camera. These are probably the best vacation photo's I've ever taken. Of course I'm just an armature, the camera did all the work. Not all my pictures came out well, and even with the movement correction feature, I found that a tripod is still a necessity for me, at least in manual and macro modes. But I'm pretty proud of them!

Here are some of my favorite photography samples from my trip, using my brand new Canon.

Taken in "sunset" mode, a bird happened to fly into the shot

Also in "sunset" mode, I love how the sailboat appears to be engulfed in flames as it drifts in front of the sun

Macro shot at the Key West Butterfly and Nature Conservatory

"Aquarium" mode was used to take pictures of sea creatures in the tanks

Click on this picture to see a the enlarged image using the "stitch mode"

I also liked how this one came out

The whole photo set can be found on my Flickr page

Friday, January 16, 2009

Rose Works Jewelry

Congratulations to Rose Works Jewelry for being the featured EtsyBlogger Seller of January!!! Ruthie, the shop's proud owner, has been making jewelry since high school. Jewelry making was a hobby that began with making items for family and herself - she even made her own wedding jewelry. Finally, she took on the suggestion of turning it into the successful business that it is today. Her many styles include bead weaving, bright colors, silver, and Swarovski crystals.

She not only runs her own shop on Etsy, but she also has a shop with her mother, Patty, called Kindred Spirit Treasures.

You can read all about Ruthie's crafting, as well as her other posts filled with useful information on her blog!

Thursday, January 15, 2009

A Treasury of LOVE

I was very excited when I came home from work today to see that my polymer clay reversible heart bracelet was picked by PinkBerryBoutique to be in her LOVE Treasury. The love theme was very fitting for her, as I see she was born on Valentine's Day! Check it out before it expires at 05:52 am on January 18, 2009...

Monday, January 12, 2009

The Clay Machine

I bought a polymer clay rolling machine a few months ago with plans of using it for Christmas beads and pendants, but never got around to using it. I was hoping to go crazy with it for Valentine's Day but still haven't been able to find much time. Finally with a weekend off and an evening snow storm, I found myself with no where to go and a few hours on my hands.

I used the roller to make flat and evenly rolled sheets of clay for heart cut outs. I used a glittering red clay and a mix of white and glittering red to make a swirling pattern of pink, red, and white. I sandwiched pins from my polymer clay baking rack between red hearts and swirl hearts to make an opening to thread jelly cord through. They baked for half an hour and I had a nice stash of Valentine's Day beads.

I used the beads to make a reversible bracelet. It can be worn showing only red, only swirls, or any alternating pattern of your choice. The jelly cord stretches over your hands and the bracelet fits snug to your wrist. This one is best for smaller wrists, up to about 6 - 6.25 inches.

Sunday, January 4, 2009

Learning from 2008, Growing in 2009

I'm trying to come up with new goals for 2009. But first, here's a look at my eight for 2008:

  1. Make more than I spend. Not even close. Fortunately for me, I'm not a big spender! No worries, I did not put myself in the hole. At this point my jewelry making is still a hobby, not a career.
  2. Create my own website. Oh yeah, forgot I wanted to do that! I'm glad I'm reviewing. I vow to have a domain name by 2010.
  3. Master the Loom. I've made a few nice things on the loom. But master it? I cannot figure out how to cleanly finish the ends. Please, please, please, if you have any tips - do share! I also had trouble finding uniformly sized seed beads. And is there a brand of thread that does not break when you are half way through a project? (Don't worry Sister, I love the loom - I'm just loom challenged).
  4. Wireworks. Yay, I did this this goal. I make my own clasps sometimes. I've done some more wire wrapping, I've done wire crochet, and had a brief moment of fame for a bird nest pendant!
  5. Polymer Beads and Pendants. I'll give myself a 4 out of 10 on this one. I made a really cool pear shaped ceiling fan pull, and a couple rounds of beads and incorporated them into jewelry. The fan pull sold quickly but my jewelry hasn't.

  6. Educate Myself. So far so good. I've earned a lot of HTML code, modified my blog into three colomns, made a favicon, and I can name more gemstones. I plan on getting another bag of them in a shop that I like in Key West this month!
  7. Project a month. Did pretty well with that, until it became get ready for Halloween, Christmas, and my jewelry party time.
  8. Don't let my work consume my life. I definitely went through a phase for about a month or two where I did not do anything around the house except make jewelry, chat in the Etsy forums, and edit pictures! Now I'm just too busy with other life stuff anyway that I can barely squeak in a blog post a week!
Ok, so my goals for 2009:
  • Make more than I spend. For real. Perhaps I can make better use of leftover beads by selling them on Etsy as "destash." Maybe trying to come up with more ideas before shopping, that way I'm not stuck with orphan beads. And stop compulsively buying beads unless I have an imediate vision for them.
  • Create a website. I mean it. Maybe get one of those PayPal shops on it as well as a link to my blog and Etsy shop.
  • Wire crochet. It was a bigger hit than I thought it would be, so I will invest more time and supplies into that. Maybe I can incorporate it into things other than jewelry.

  • Selling in real life. I had my first jewelry party in 2008 and it was a success. I'd like to have some more and do some shows. I just need to rebuild up my inventory first!
  • Decoupage pendants. They have been more of a hit off line than online but they are inexpensive to make and allow for some creativity. Not only do I want to make more this year, but instead of having 50 percent of them turn out well, I'd like them all to come out nice!
  • Expert quality photos. I'm setting the bar high for this one, but I've been trying to get nice pictures for a year, and with a brand new camera and tripod there are no excuses!

Thursday, January 1, 2009

An Outdoorsy Carnival - The First One of 2009!

Welcome to the January 1, 2009 edition of an outdoorsy carnival.

Open Air

Gil Ortiz presents Iztaccíhuatl and Popocatépetl posted at gilocafe.

A Keeper's Jackpot presents New Beginnings posted at A Keeper's Jackpot.

Aquatic Life

GrrlScientist presents The Indonesian Mimetic Octopus posted at Living the Scientific Life, saying, "This video documents a fascinating creature was discovered in 1998 off the coast of Sulawesi in Indonesia. The mimic octopus is the first known species to take on the characteristics of multiple species. This octopus is able to copy the physical likeness and movement of more than fifteen different species and is so intelligent that it is able to discern which dangerous sea creature to impersonate that will present the greatest threat to its current possible predator."

Green Thumb

Sarah presents How to Properly Mow Your Lawn | Winter Lawn Care - Lawn Care Tips posted at Lawn Care Tips, saying, "Many people mow their lawn too short and effectively kill it in the process."

Susan Morris presents A Quick Introduction To The World Of Grow Lights posted at Bonsai Tree, saying, "An intro to hydroponics for our bonsai trees"

Ruth presents Camp For Free or Nearly Free! posted at Camping Tips, saying, "Looking to find a campground that is free or $10 or less? There are more places than you'd think where you camp for free or nearly free."

In the Woods

Peter Jones presents Classic Flatiron Bouldering Problems: New Gems on Old Stone posted at Rocky Mountain Raider: Telemark Skiing, Bouldering, and Trail Running in Colorado.

GrrlScientist presents The Evolution of Poisonous Birds posted at Living the Scientific Life, saying, "Given this suite of poisonous birds, Dumbacher wondered whether all poisonous birds closely related to each other. Based on morphological characters, it was thought they were closely related, but to learn more about the evolutionary history of this group of birds, it was necessary to reconstruct their relationships based on their DNA."

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