Wednesday, May 30, 2007

More Custom Orders

I've been creating some custom orders lately. My latest is a stick pearl necklace and earring set using handmade earwires and clasp. I really like the way they turned out. I love these pearls and this set. They're just a bit different but still very pretty. A little funky yet still elegant. I just love them. :)

Custom Order Necklace

Custom Order Necklace

Custom Order

For this set I used the ball headpins I got from Misti at Pickle Pot on Etsy. They are fantabulous! They were uniform in size, quite sturdy, and they performed very well. I've definitely found my source for handmade ball headpins. Misti actually featured this set using her great headpins here! Check it out!

These headpins are made using half hard wire which I like better than dead soft for most of my uses. It just holds up better for me. I still find uses for dead soft and keep it on hand, but I find it to be a bit too flimsy for most of my uses other than briolettes. Even then I still use half hard if I can. I'd like to learn how to make rings which I believe uses dead soft. But overall I usually find myself reaching for half hard more often than the dead soft.

How about you? Which hardness of headpins and wire do you use more often?

Misti also has a wonderful jewelry shop on Etsy as well called MDK Jewelry Designs that you should check out as well as Pickle Pot, her supplies store. She'll be glad you dropped by. Give her a heart while you're there and tell her MsBelle sent you!

Until next time....

Monday, May 28, 2007

Come Join the Ring!

There is something new and very, very cool for all you Etsy Moms out there!! A new Etsy Street Team and Yahoo group has formed (of which I am a proud member) for moms who sell on Etsy. It doesn't matter if you are a SAHM, WAHM, or a mom who works outside the house. It doesn't even matter if your kids are grown! As long as you are a mom and you sell on Etsy, this is the group for you!

Come on! Join the ring!! You can find the ringsurf link to the left in the sidebar that will take you to the group's blog and a Yahoo group button as well that you can click on to join. So what are you waiting for?!! :)

Thursday, May 24, 2007

Treasury of Friends

Pearly Browns Treasury List, originally uploaded by msbellee.

Yippee!! I was lucky enough to be included in a treasury list created by jarjarbinksequalsgod who is a buyer on Etsy. The list featured beautiful pearly browns and is a gorgeous list if I do say so myself.

I feel very honored to have been chosen to appear in it along with my good Etsy, Flickr and blogland friends Kathy Hardy (Dornick Designs on Etsy) and Stephanie Gibson (Stephanie Gibson on Etsy). I am humbled to be surrounded by such talented designers, some of whom I don't know personally but still admire their work very much. What an thrill this was, and very inspiring!

Thank you "jarjarbinksequalsgod." I appreciate it. :)

Wednesday, May 16, 2007

Highly Recommended

Sorry I haven't posted in a few days. I've been busy trying to keep up with Kevin! I haven't even made any jewelry; just been playing outside really. And here's what we've been doing!

(Sorry, the video has no sound. I took this with my Olympus not the video camera.)

Kevin has so much fun in his bounce house. The first day we got it out while here at mom's he bounced and played in it for almost 3 hours! He slept really good that night too! The next day, 2 hours and 45 minutes. And then yesterday he was in it for another 2 1/2 hours just bouncing and playing, doing somersaults, pretending he was swimming underwater, all sorts of things. This one has a built-in slide on one side and that just adds to the fun. It has stakes to anchor it down so it doesn't move all over the place when the bouncing begins! I usually put a tarp underneath it to protect it from any sticks or stuff that might be on the ground and may harm it. So far it has been well worth the effort!

This bounce house is one of our favorite things to do outside and it burns off so much energy! I HIGHLY recommend a bounce house to anyone with kids. It's a very good source of exercise for your child as well as entertainment for you both.:) You can have up to three kids in this particular one or no more than 250 pounds I believe, so you can invite a friend to join your little one in the bouncing. I, too, can get in it with Kevin and I have to admit it's a lot fun!

We got this one for Kevin for Christmas two years ago and it has been worth every penny. It came from Toys-R-Us and I believe we got it on sale. I can carry it and set it up by myself so I recommend it for moms. It is a bit on the heavy side to carry by myself but I can do it. You can put it in a wagon and roll it to your destination if you want to. But Kevin can now grab one end and 'help' me so it makes it a bit easier even with what little weight he can carry.

I just highly recommend these. Highly. Plain and simple. Hours of exercise and fun!


I uploaded a slew of pictures I've taken while being in the mountains so far. These are just a few of the pictures I have taken. I invite you to see them in the Flickr set I created. There are some cool pics there. If you are a Flickr contact of mine you will be able to see all of the pictures so make sure you are signed in. If you are not a contact of mine then you will not be able to see some of them, but you can view a lot of them. I hope you enjoy them.

(NOTE: I changed who could view pictures of Kevin on Flickr due to having some strangers favorite them. These people who fav'd his pics had photos in their stream that were not what I would call 'earnest' or family friendly. Therefore, I changed who could see my son's pictures. I highly advise anyone with kids to do this with their family pics on Flickr. I'm not sure who was looking at my son or 'how' they were looking at him, but I'm not taking any more chances.)

Friday, May 11, 2007


originally uploaded by msbellee.

I can finally quit fretting now about sale number 27. I was afraid I was never going to sell another thing and had relagated myself to the fact that nobody liked my stuff. Oh well, I'll just get to keep it all! Then today when I least expected it these earrings sold!

I just love these earrings. I secretly wanted to keep them. They're just cool. I'm so glad my love for them was affirmed. These will be on there way to California on Friday where I hope they are worn in good health! Thank you very much to my latest customer. It is very much appreciated!

(gonna have to make a pair for me!)

Tuesday, May 8, 2007

Mother's Day & Tagged Again

Blue Ridge Mtns., originally uploaded by msbellee.

If you read this blog even just a little you will come to learn that I'm from Lansing, in Ashe County in the Blue Ridge Mountains of North Carolina and I want to go back there to stay. First of all my mother is there. I also have a sister there, a brother there and numerous friends. But most important of heart is there.

For me there never was a truer statement than what Dorothy says in the Wizard of Oz: "There's no place like home." To me there most certainly isn't. Nothing compares to it. Never could, never will. The beauty of the place is one thing, but the feeling of belonging and centeredness I have when there is quite another. When I'm there I just feel relaxed. I can breathe. I feel I'm where I need to be. My roots are there. I grew up there. My family has been there for generations. When I'm away from there, I feel more stressed. I constantly find myself thinking about when I can go back. And I'm happy to say that tomorrow, Tuesday, I'm going!

Being that Mother's Day is this weekend, I'll be going home to spend it with (who else?) my mother (Kevin's Granny). I'm going to make it an extended stay, probably 'til the first week of June. Of course, Kevin is going too. I couldn't leave the grandson now could I? And Barney is going too. He's the granddog! I love taking both Kevin and Barney to the mountains to see Granny. And they both love to go too!

Kevin will get to run around barefoot in the grass as he won't have to worry about fire ants! He'll get to play in the dirt all he wants. He can walk up the hill behind Granny's house to see the beautiful view from up there. We'll go see his uncle (my brother) play bluegrass up on a real stage in front of a great big audience! He'll also get to ride on a real John Deere tractor and even get to steer! He gets to do all sorts of fun things there! But most of all he gets to see his Granny.

Granny is one of a kind, let me tell you. She's the best influence I could possibly think of for both Kevin and me. I've always said I want to be just like her when I grow up, but I fall terribly short of that I'm afraid. Suffice it to say we love Granny very much. Very much. And she is why we like going home as often as we can. There's no place like home, and there's no other Granny like her! She's just the best. I'm so exicted!


Tag, I'm "It" Again

I was tagged yet a third time by Misti of mdkjewelrydesigns, so here I go again!!

1. I have bifocals.

2. I did desktop publishing for 12 years. I still have a need to be on the computer. I think I was subliminally trained to sit at it for 60 hours a week!

3. I totaled my mom's station wagon while still driving with my learner's permit.

4. I was 4th runner up and the overall talent winner in the Miss Ashe County Beauty Pageant when I was a junior in high school. (hehe, what a looooong time ago that was!)

5. I wore braces for 4 years. I had a space between my two front teeth like Lauren Hutton and I could spit water out through them in a stream!

6. I have chronic TMJ in my jaw and every time I talk, chew or yawn I POP. (and it's probably from spitting water out through my two front teeth!)

7. I used to be really, really, really scared of thunderstorms. I remember being a little girl on top of the slide of our swingset and either not being able to come down or I wouldn't come down when it came a thunderstorm. I remember crying because for some reason I felt abandoned there. I used to joke to my mom about being 'left out on the slide'. I'm no longer afraid of storms. I respect them, but now I like to hear the thunder and watch the lightning, and I'm trying to teach Kevin to respect them too but not fear them.

So there you have it, yet another 7 things about me. I am now going to break the rules by not tagging anyone again real soon. I'm going to wait a while to do it, mostly because I don't know anyone who has not been tagged twice already in the past two weeks, and also because I don't know that many people who blog yet! I apologize. I'll pick the game back up soon, though. Thanks for tagging me Misti. I promise I will continue the game. I just want to get to my mom's and have a little time to think about it and do some digging up of new people to tag!

I hope you all have a beautiful day.

Thursday, May 3, 2007

I've Been Tagged Again...Twice!!

Well, this is interesting! I've been tagged twice: once by Sylvia Vincent and again by MissFickleMedia! How cool is that?! I love playing tag. But since Sylvia tagged me first I'll play by her rules:

Start with 7 random facts/habits about yourself

People who are tagged have to write their 7 things on their blog

Then choose another 7 people to get tagged and list their names

Don't forget to leave them a comment to tell them they have been tagged and to read your blog

OK, so here goes....

1) I've lived in five different states: NC, TN, GA, VA, and MD.

2) I worked construction with my brother-in-law back in the 1980s. That was the first and last tan I ever had.

3) I used to want to be a singer/songwriter. When I was a teenager I would sit in my room and sing to the top of my lungs to Linda Ronstadt, pretending I was on stage.

4) I saw Emerson, Lake & Palmer in concert three times in the 1970s. Got their autograph once! I was heavy into ELP.

5) I still have a collection of Breyer horses from when I was a kid. I have a big laundry basket full of them that my mom thankfully kept. I played and played with them as a kid and now Kevin plays with them too. I guess they are heirlooms!

6) I can remember watching Secretariat win the all three races of the Triple Crown and I cried when he died (as well as Barbaro).

7) While riding a Greyhound bus back from Memphis to Knoxville in the early 80s, I sat beside a guy who was a member of the Australian soccer team. He was a very nice guy and later sent me pictures of his travels throughout the US. I still remember his name and the conversation we had on the bus. Since then I've wanted to visit Australia, he made it sound so nice.

OK, here is who I'm tagging:

Rani of Bintang Jewelry
Such Pretty Colors
Isis of PaperFlowerGirl
Stacey of WildflowerDesigns
Beadiful Things
Simone Walsh
Kristen of KnitSteel

Until next time....

Mother's Day

Mother's Day is fast approaching! Don't forget to check out Lucid Dreams' shop for handmade Mother's Day cards! She is offering unique handmade Mother's Day purse cards that include gift certificates in various amounts redeemable at the following participating Etsy shops:

So go check it out! These are such beautifully crafted, cute cards that I'm sure any mother would love. And I'm sure there is something memorable for mom at any of the participating shops!

Wednesday, May 2, 2007

I've Been Blogged!!

My dear friend Stephanie Gibson of Etsy has created a new blog called 'Mira' and has given me the honor of kicking it off as her first featured artist. I was thrilled to have such an honor!

Mira crop

Stephanie is a wonderful person and an inspiration to me. She creates wonderfully expressive jewelry that I drool over very much. But above all that, she is a beautiful mother. She is quite talented and diverse, possessing many facets to her personality. I admire her very much.

I'm looking forward to getting to know the artists who will be featured on Mira. And I am most proud to have been chosen the first guest to grace it.

Thank you Stephanie.