Tuesday, May 31, 2011


You are reading the blog of the woman who spent a week rolling beads in a bead roller and didn't own any molds or sculpting tools.  Who was that crazy lady?  I bet I have every sculpting tool (thanks to Christi Friesen) and 100 molds (thanks to Penny Jo Couch, I love her molds).   I digress, I am now making buttons for a friend of mine.  Her daughter makes beautiful quilted bags and puts my buttons on them.  I've made some button molds from some rather interesting old buttons and using sculpting tools to make bird houses.  You can see my bird houses in some previous blogs.  Well, I just got an order for more buttons and I worked all weekend on them.  I'm seeing buttons in my sleep.

 These are something different for me.  I used the cane I made and put it in one of Penny Jo Couch's cabochon molds.  Did each one a little different.  I made a button shank out of 18 gauge copper wire and put it in with liquid clay before I baked it.  I really like these.

These were made with a mold that I made from an old button and Simple Silicone from JewelryEpoxy.com.  It's a two part silicone and really easy to us.  Their website has a video showing how to use it.  These were made with gold clay and gold Pearlex Powders.

This is the same mold with different Pearlex Powders.

These are made from translucents with color added and the extruder.  They almost look like Bakelite.

These were done with a button that I made a mold out of polymer clay with.  I have to spray it with Armour All every time I make something in order for it to come out easy.

These are hearts that I textured and used Pearlex on and then sanded to make them look vintage.

These are a little chunkier heart buttons with Swarovski flat back crystals.  I'll have to start making buttons to keep them on hand so I don't have to rush to make them when she needs them.


A friend of mine went to Quartsite a while back and bought some strands of coral beads.  We finally got together so she could tell me what she wanted done with them.  Some of the beads were unusable which surprised me.  They had black spots and severe cuts and gouges on them.

I went through them to pick out the good ones and had enough to make two necklaces, earrings and a bracelet.  I added some silver to it.  The necklaces can be worn together or separately.

It really looked good on her with the shirt she had on Friday night.  See, it's been a busy weekend.

Dear Booboo, it's been three weeks since you went to Rainbow Bridge.  I think of you everyday, you were the light of my life.  Hope you have lots of bags to get into and lots of yarn to play with.

Monday, May 30, 2011


I know today is the day we are suppose to remember our friends and family members who died in war, whatever war it was.  I watched a show on TV last night from Washington about Memorial Day.  It was so depressing, I cried the whole time.  My husband was in the Army at Ft. Hood when Colin Powell was the Commander there.  He has a lot of great stories about Ft. Hood and the snakes in Texas.  He has a friend who only has half a head left from the injuries he received in Viet Nam.  We lost about 25 of our classmates in Viet Nam.  Some of those guys I went to grade school and high school with.

My dad was in the Navy during WWII, my step dad was in the Army during WWII ( he showed up later).  My mother played on a professional ladies baseball team during that war.  I was named for a professional lady baseball player who was a friend of my mom's.  The only time I have ever had a bat in my hand, I accidentally let it go and it hit the catcher in the mouth and knocked out her two front teeth.  I was never allowed to go near baseball equipment after that.

I worked for a major pharmaceutical company in the mid-west and I was responsible for all the Atropine syringes that went to Desert Storm to counter attack Agent Orange during the Gulf War.  A lot of our guys from work who had just gotten out of college and were National Guard members had to go to the gulf and I wanted to make sure they all had their syringes.  Those syringes were the top priority for almost two years.  The stress of that project put everyone into craze mode.  Sometimes we had to cover two jobs to make up for the guys that were gone.  We all wore yellow ribbons and decorated our offices and the cafeteria with yellow ribbons.  We all sang Tony Orlando's song "Tie A Yellow Ribbon".   We lost a couple good guys.

I was sitting in my office on 9-11-2001 when my husband called and said "you won't believe what just happened".  We all ran to a conference room to turn on the TV.  No one could talk.  I don't ever remember being that scared.  I left early and drove home in shock.  Life as it was once known, changed forever.

As I was watching that Memorial Day program last night, I was asking myself if there was something more I need to be doing for the vets coming back who have been injured, is there something I can do to help their families, is there a place I can go to volunteer to help?  I used to knit wool scarves for the guys but I'm so allergic to the wool, I would get a migraine every time I picked it up.  I decided, I'm going to start making scarves and afghans and take them down to Luke Air Force Base.  I'm sure they will be able to find someone that needs them.

I had a thought too.  I've seen thrift stores that help support animal shelters, homeless women and children, sending poor girls to college, to support church activities.  Have you ever seen a thrift store that supports the vets and families of veterans?  Let me know if you know of one so I can support them somehow, someway.

A lot of you that read my blog are too young to remember all these wars and the guys that never made it home.  Now it's not just guys it's women too.  I never thought I would see the day that a woman died in combat.  I don't think when I was in my 20's or 30's that I would of had the nerve to do the things young women do now.  I was never given the opportunity either but I still don't think I'm that kind of brave woman.

I know one thing for sure, my husband puts the American Flag out every day and if he forgets, I do it.

How about it people, let's get those flags out to remind us of how great things are in America, to remind us of the men and women who lost their lives defending our country and letting the world know what we stand for and what we won't stand for.

Wednesday, May 25, 2011


As you know, I belong to the Arizona Polymer Clay Guild.  At every meeting someone does a demo.  This past Saturday one of our ladies showed how to convert a caulking gun into an extruder if you have that little silver extruder.  I was never able to use that.  I was so happy when the new green Makins one came out.  A couple weeks ago I was reading through some blogs and came across Knightwork's. She said she took some canes she had made and put them in the extruder to see what would happen.  She put in a big bullseye and out came a perfect little bullseye.  I tried it with some canes that I had made and sure enough, it worked.  So Saturday I did a demo on reducing canes in the extruder.  Being that I can't leave well enough alone, I played around and came up with something very interesting.  When you make a cane and reduce it in the extruder, the outer color of the cane stretches and the outer color starts disappearing.  So, I took some cane pieces, added an inch or half inch of a solid color on the front (the part closest to the disc opening).  It worked great.  The entire cane got covered with the clay.  Here's some pictures.

This is the original flower cane that I made.

The middle cane was done in the extruder using the largest square disc.  The cane on the right was done with the same disc but I put a half an inch of gold clay on the front of the cane.  I could have used black but for demo purposes I wanted to use another color.  As the end of the cane came out of the extruder I got something really awesome.
The cane did a twist at the end.  If you take your cane and twist it slightly before you put it in the extruder, you will get the twist also.  I did a spliced cane and ran it through the tiny circle disc and it came out perfect but really small which is great.  That's my story and I'm sticking to it.


This looks like burgundy.  My 96 year old friend wanted silver and burgundy earrings.

I went to the bead store by me and 4 people gave me beads they said were burgundy and not one was close to what the other one gave me.  I make earrings for my friend for every blouse she has.  She's in a nursing home but she dresses to the nines (I never understood what that meant) every day.  She also has a better memory than I do and has two martinis every night before dinner.  I'm rambling.  I bought some beads and made two pair of earrings but neither one looks burgundy to me.  I'll send them to her and see what she says.

The top ones look black in the picture but they are a little brownish-red.  I guess I'll be on the lookout for burgundy.  I only know the kind that comes in the bottle.


I remember that movie.  Ann Margaret was pretty good looking then, I guess we all have to get older.

I sold 5 of my baby bird houses today.  YEAH.  It's amazing how many people want to give you ideas about how to make things like that even after you've put 3 hours in each little bird house.  Teeheehee  OK, I'm listening.  Where's that burgundy????

Good night Booboo.  It's really quiet here without you. Big HUG.

Thursday, May 19, 2011


As I mentioned in a post a few weeks ago, Cindy Lietz at  http://www.beadsandbeading.com/blog/  did a tutorial on making bird house beads.  A week later there was a nest across the street of baby wrens.  Every morning there are two doves that wake me up at 5:30 (who needs a rooster)?  Tuesday on the golf course there was a quail family, mom, dad and four little hair balls with feet all running all over the place.
I live in Arizona and right now every bird in the U.S. is visiting here (except most of the snowbirds have gone home).  The snowbirds from the mid-west I call "snow-blowers".  Not all of them think that's funny but it's ok for them to call me a Cheesehead since I originally came from Wisconsin.  Is that fair????  NOT

Anyway, back to my bird house story ( I tend to wander or is it wonder).  I had some little pieces of left over clay and a new leaf cane and made a couple of bird houses.  Next thing I know I'm making more bird houses.  Some ladies at beading saw them and wanted them so I have to make more.  This is really off the beaten path for me.  It's more like sculpting.  I'm more of a "Roll A Bead" girl.  The more I do, the more I want to do.  Sort of sounds like my shopping problem with beads and clay.  Anyway, here they are.

Those spotted feathers came from a little bird that was sitting in my window yelling at me.  Pulled them right out of his back side.  Just kidding, I bought those.
Click on picture to see them up close.  Some have Swarovski flat back crystals in the door hole.

I think these would be great for the kids at Beads of Courage.  I'll make a bunch and donate them.


Miss you my beloved Booboo

Saturday, May 14, 2011


How much clay and how many beads can one person have?  We need to start an organization for people like me who can't stop buying polymer clay and beads.  We can call it PBA (Polymer Clay and Beaders Annonymous).  Oh no, that's taken (Professional Bowler's Association).  Well, if you come up with a name let me know and we'll have the first meeting at my house.

Yesterday we took my friend Judy out for her birthday.  We went to Tempe to one of Arizona's biggest beading stores first.  I didn't need anything.  My bag weighed 7 pounds when we left.  Then we went to a huge art supply store.  I didn't need anything.  They had Premo clay.  They had all the new colors for $2.09 for a 2 ounce bar and they had 1 pound bars for $10.99.  I already have 420 bars of clay.  Now I have 435.  We went to lunch downtown Tempe at a place called House of Tricks.  Awesome food but my GPS didn't tell me that yesterday was ASU's graduation in Tempe.  Hope those kids find jobs.  From there we went to a beading store in Peoria that was having a 50% off of everything sale because the road is going to be paved for a week and they knew business would be bad.  I didn't need anything.  Spent $56 but got out paying $28 because of the sale.  Now I can't find room to put all this stuff.  AM I THE ONLY ONE?

I did some clay work this week trying to get my mind off Booboo.  I made this pendant and matching earrings.  I wore it yesterday when we went out.  It wasn't wired the way I wanted it to be but when I opened a package of coiled wire, the wire sprang out and ripped a slice in my thumb one inch long.  Couldn't hold anything for 2 days.

It's a form of Mokume Gane and has Magic Glos on it.  By the way, my cameras are acting funny again.  I think they are going through MENopause.  If you click on this you can see it better.


In the August 2008 issue of Bead and Button there is a pattern in there for a beaded bead.  It's actually right angle weave with two needles and is very simple.  I made a bead and it's beautiful but it's a big honking thing.  I used some size 11, gold seed beads on it and after handling it a couple times, the gold rubbed off.  Can't remember where I got these.  I've started a herringbone necklace to put it on and I'm using the same seed beads.  The gold is coming off again.

I'll post a picture when I'm done.   Cameras  and I weren't getting along today.


I bought a ton of Tila Beads (two hole beads).  I love making these earrings.  I put 3 pair in my Arfire store at http://www.artfire.com/users/BLeeKreations.  Since I over bought (:0) on those also, I'm selling the earrings very cheap.  At least this keeps me out of the bar and off the streets.

My relatives don't want any more jewlery.

I wonder if we can take over AA and just call it BA and PCA.  I know I'm not alone in this!!!!!!

Goodnight Booboo.

Wednesday, May 11, 2011


I want to thank everyone for all the wonderful messages that I got on the blog and on facebook about Booboo.  I wasn't able to do this Monday or Tuesday but I think I'm finally coming around (NOT).  I still look for him in the closet and by the shower.  He followed me around 24/7 for 20 years.  It was like having a 3 year old.  My friends will tell you he was the loudest cat they ever heard and he talked all day long just like a 3 year old.  The doctor said he was pretty sick and wouldn't get better without a lot of invasive procedures.  I don't think Boo would have liked that.  The doctor said I was doing the right thing even though it didn't feel like it.
 Now I have to move on to all the good memories of him.  He was born in a shelter in Kenosha, Wisconsin on Halloween 1991.  I didn't want another yellow tiger cat but grandma went with me to the shelter, that was a mistake.  She opened the door to his cage when she saw him and he jumped on her.  His claws were in her coat so far we couldn't get them out.  He licked her face so hard I thought she was going to lose her glasses.  Since they were attached, I had to take them both home.  Great decision now that I look back.  Thanks grandma.

As you can, he was always in the middle of things.  There's one of his sponge balls.  He brought them to me and I threw them and he brought them and I threw them.  I'm sure I'm going to find 20 of them anytime now.

When he was a baby he had ear mites.  I asked my mom to take him to the vet to get his ears checked because I had to work.  She wrapped him in a towel and put him in the car.  When we saw her in the afternoon she had a big scratch going up her nose and her glasses were way off kilter.  She said by the time she got to the vets he was sitting on her head and had a hold of her nose with his claws to hold on.  She had to ask someone in the parking lot to get the vet to come out to the car to get the cat off her head and out of her hair.  She got mad when we started laughing.  I had to buy him a carry crate to take him to the vet from that time on.  And he screamed.

I don't have any baby pictures of him on the computer.  I'll have to go dig them out and scan them in.  He was adorable when he was little.

Thanks for letting me bend your ear about this guy.  He was a good old boy.

Monday, May 9, 2011


This might be my last post for a little while.  Booboo is very bad.  I called the vet this morning to get an appointment and they don't want me in till 4 in the afternoon.  I know what that means.  The lady at the vets office has been so sweet I'm just amazed.  If the receptionists in the people doctor offices were that nice it would be wonderful.  If there are typos here it's because I'm having a hard time seeing through my tears.  Sorry.  This should be private but I've made so many wonderful friends through this blog and they were all concerned about Booboo.  My blog is about animals and polymer clay and friends so I figured this would be a good release for me and my friends will be there for me.
I took this picture of him last night laying on my desk.  He always liked holding my thumb while I worked on the computer with my mouse.  I guess I've been pretty lucky to have had him around for 20 years.
So, say a little prayer for him today.  I'm sure Annie and Angel and Grandma are waiting for him with some catnip.

Saturday, May 7, 2011


I am an avid follower of Cindy Lietz at http://www.beadsandbeading.com/blog/.  Every Friday Cindy puts up a new video showing a tutorial about polymer clay or something related.  This past Monday she put out a free video about her tear drop blends and how to shift it.  You can go to the link above if you want to see it.  I'm not sure how long it will be there and how long it will be free.

Anyway, a week ago last Friday she did a tutorial about making bird house beads.  I watched it and thought it was cute but it wasn't something I normally would get excited about.  Well, my last two posts have been about the baby cactus wrens that were born in a nest right across the street from me.  I've been checking on them twice a day since I found them.  I think that nest inspired me to try Cindy's little bird houses.  I made two of them and I can feel a bunch more in that muse in my head.


On the cover of the 7th Anniversary Issue of Bead Unique there was a picture of a beautiful polymer clay necklace.

My friend Rose decided she loved that necklace so much she had to have one.  Check this out.

Isn't this gorgeous?  She made four petals instead of two and she also made her own neck piece by doing Kumihimo.  She does incredible Kumihimo ropes.  Congratulations Rose, where's mine?  LOL


My sister is going to a wedding in Florida next week and needed earrings.  I've been playing with the new Tila (two hole) beads.  Made these for her.  Haven't heard if she got them yet or not.  At least she loved the pens I made for the wedding.


My guy Boo isn't doing good.  He's almost 20 now.  We've been up all night (he was sick) and he's lost weight and isn't eating.  He's going to the doctor on Monday since they aren't open today.   We are going to spend the weekend snuggling.  It's hard for me to write this because I've been crying all day.  It hurts me to see him like this.  I've had him since he was 3 weeks old and he's had me laughing for almost 20 years.  He's been a good friend and my best pal but I think he's tired now. 

Monday, May 2, 2011


I was worried about the babies in the cactus because it has been very windy here.  I just checked on them and the parents were there.  They flew away when they saw me so I took the opportunity to take another picture.  One of the little birds had a feather stuck on his beak.

They are wrens not Quail.  The parents are very loud.


The pens are done, individually wrapped and in the mail.

This is just part of them.  I ran out of room on the refrigerator.  The magnet will stick to the metal eye so it can be turned into a beaded ring if they don't want to put them on the refrigerator.  Now to clean up all the beads and stuff.


I found this the other day and couldn't live without it.

It says "Husband and Cat missing - $100 reward for Cat".  My husband laughed and then made a face and walked away.  He knows he's worth more than $100.  LOL

Sunday, May 1, 2011


There is just something special about May1st.  At home in Wisconsin it can be 80 or 30 on May 1st.  Here in Arizona it's a beautiful day.  I know I just did a blog last night but this morning something beautiful happened and I wanted to share it.  I heard a noise coming from across the street.  My neighbors are both gone for the summer and I watch the house of one of them.  Between the two neighbors there is a big cactus and look what I found in there:

There were 4 little mouths singing for food.  Not sure what they are yet.  My husband thinks they are cactus wrens.  They might be baby quail.  I'll keep updating with pictures.