Sunday, November 28, 2010

Tangible Tidbits 2010 #46: The Holiday Season 2010 Begins!

Hi, everyone! Hope all you U.S.-based folks enjoyed your Thanksgiving. :)

As I mentioned last week, I had a family funeral to attend on Wednesday. I hadn't been to their house in probably 25 years, but I recognized the neighborhood when the funeral procession passed the house. That choked me up. It's a nice thing to do, and I've heard it's becoming more commonplace. I think my immediate family members would have liked that, had it been done in the early 2000s. :\ I also went to visit a friend at the cemetery on Thanksgiving morning, but I couldn't find his grave. I should have looked for landmarks the last time I was there in June, but it didn't occur to me at the time. :p Got caught in the day's snow flurries while I was there! It didn't stick here in New Jersey, though.

Still trying to promote myself and my company, I submitted some pieces to Buy Art Now Guys! (BANG) 5 this morning at the 1978 Maplewood Arts Center. Check out the second exhibit listed here for more information. I was approached to participate after the deadline for the postcards and posters, so my name isn't listed. :\

I also posted a new Factoid this week: Procedures For Preparing A Wax Cast in Jewelry and Sculptures, based on last month's Focal Piece of the Month. The new Focal Piece is up on the company website, BTW. :)

In addition, I made a trip to Monroe Township (exit 8A on the NJ Turnpike) to deliver a necklace that was requested at the Jewels of New Jersey earlier this month, as well as a ring. We chatted for about an hour and discussed ideas for future pieces she would like. I have some materials already on-hand, so I will hopefully get some time to pull them together for her soon. :)

I have another custom necklace to make this week, which I hope to get to by the middle of the week. I have school tomorrow night right after work -- remind me to report on last week's critique next week! -- and the Virtual Garage Sale to set up on Tuesday night. I was out most of the day today with my mother and sister at the Paper Mill Playhouse's production of Les Miserables. Mom took us there and to dinner for our birthdays, which come in December and January. GREAT performance, BTW! They are really promoting it, too...I heard a commercial on WBGO-AM this morning (Mom's Sunday morning station) and saw three ads on The Hallmark Channel last night! The TV spots impressed me. I don't recall seeing them for any other Paper Mill production before. :o

Still on the back-burner is restitching my coworker's grandmother's necklace. I ordered 4 lb. Fireline (stringing material) for it this week. Hopefully, it will get here sooner rather than later to give me more time to work on it before Christmas. :)

Thankfully, I've done most of my Christmas shopping already through Something Tangible's Virtual Mall. I had read from one astrologer that shopping would be difficult in December due to Mercury going into Retrograde later in the month. Items would be backordered, hard to find, or not enthusiastically received if purchased during that I decided not to take any chances and get my gifts early. Got some great deals, too! ;)

Can you believe December is less than a week away already? Is it just me or does time speed up the older you get? LOL Have a great week! ;)
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Sunday, November 21, 2010

Tangible Tidbits 2010 #45: I Forgot What I Was Going To Write...

Hi, everyone! I generally have an idea of what major points I want to hit each week when I post to my blog. My earlier thoughts pretty much went out the window when I got two emails -- 15 minutes apart, mind you -- alerting me to two different wakes/funerals I have to attend on Tuesday and Wednesday this week. Happy Thanksgiving, eh? :o

One is my friend's mother...I've known this friend since the early 1990s -- she was my first boss out of college -- and she considers me like a younger sister. Her mother has been deteriorating for a long time, so this news was not exactly a surprise. The other one is my mother's cousin by marriage, whom I've known for most of my life. Mom is Godmother to one of their daughters. She's also been ill for around two years. It's still kind of shocking to me, since I really hadn't heard much about her until the past two days. Naturally, I feel empathy for anyone who loses a parent, having been there myself.

Getting back on track...I promised to post a link to the contest entry last week, didn't I? Click here to see it. Public voting starts November 23, 2010 and ends December 8, 2010. Wish me luck! :D

The photo from my Make Your Own Holiday Gifts Workshop appeared in this week's News-Record of Maplewood & South Orange! I posted it to the Something Tangible LLC Facebook Fan Page if you want to check it out. :)

I have a big challenge coming up this December. A coworker asked me to restring a vintage seed bead necklace that belonged to her grandmother. I send photos to a renowned beader I know to ask for advice. She has confidence that I can do it without taking the necklace apart, so I will try to get that done for my coworker to give to her niece for Christmas. Wish me luck again! ;)

We are FINALLY having our first critique -- and a quiz! -- in class tomorrow night. The professor forgot to tell us about it a few weeks ago and then he forgot about it entirely on the night it was rescheduled. I have to ask him for some advice on a few pieces that are "in process," but I have three pendants and three rings completed. We are only required to have eight pieces finished for the final critique, and I will have at least nine or or by then. :) I have to reread the chapters of the book for the quiz during my lunch break tomorrow. :o

By the way, I added the NetworkedBlogs box on the right side of our Blog page ALL BY MYSELF! LOL You can now follow this blog using NetworkedBlogs on Facebook. :)

I wish everyone a wonderful Thanksgiving. December will be here before we know it! Where did the year go?
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Sunday, November 14, 2010

Tangible Tidbits 2010 #44: Must've Been A Slow News Day...

Well, I had my first-ever workshop today at 1978 Maplewood Arts Center. I only had one student, but it was good to be able to provide her with one-on-one instruction. The local paper sent a photographer! I should have thought about taking PR pics to send to them, but it totally slipped my mind. The picture could run this week or three months from now. I will keep you posted on that! ;)

It looks like we're on schedule for the Mother-Daughter workshop at Blue Life Karate and Fitness on Saturday, December 4 at 3:00 p.m. I mentioned this to the The News-Record of Maplewood & South Orange photographer couldn't hurt to plug the karate center! ;)

I entered three contests this week:'s "What Inspires You?" beaded necklace contest (I'll send the voting link next week), BeadStyle magazine's Crystal Challenge, and a FIVE AND DIME STYLE contest by B'Sue's Boutique. Wish me luck! :)

I also found out about BuyArtNowGuys5 (BANG5), an exhibition and sale of small artwork at the 1978 studio in early December (12/4 & 5, 12/11 & 12). Apparently, I'm the only jewelry artist so far. Good news for me! ;) LOL

In internet news, I hooked up the company's blog to NetworkedBlogs on Facebook. It seemed like the logical thing to do. We'll see if it increases readership. :)

As I mentioned last week, I had a big decision to make over last weekend. I was offered a full-time temporary position with a former employer for two months. They have two people out on medical leave and are short-handed. I decided to take it because it never hurts to have a steady paycheck going into the holidays. Also, I'm just a natural pitch-in-and-help kind of person. ;) This means, of course, that I will be pulling back a bit on my projects here, probably until the New Year. :\

Another reason I took the full-time gig is because I was feeling a little overwhelmed after the back-to-back craft shows last weekend. When I was in college, I took three French courses and earned grades of an A, a B, and a C, respectively. By the time I'd finished the third class, I decided to soothe my bruised ego by taking Spanish, which I had studied for eight years, including AP Language and AP Literature classes in high school. I bombed on the Spanish placement test at Rutgers, so I placed in Intermediate (I wasn't prepared because I knew I was switching to French...I was bored with Spanish and thought another Romance Language would be just as easy for me. NOT!). So, I aced Intermediate Spanish with little effort and felt better. ;) Part of the reason I went back to the office job is because I knew it was something I did well, and that I was appreciated for my efforts -- after all, they asked me back, right? ;) In my experience, it pays to switch to something you excel at doing whenever you begin to doubt yourself in another area. It builds up your self-esteem and gives you the energy to go back and try again. :)

On that note, I have work to do! Have a great week! :D
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Monday, November 8, 2010

Tangible Tidbits 2010 #43: Tired With A Capital "T"

Hey all! I am worn out after traveling out to Hunterdon County on Saturday and then down to South Jersey on Sunday for the back-to-back craft shows. As I told one lady yesterday, my goal is not to have to do that long-term! LOL It's a lot of work and payback is not assured, by any means. Overall, I cleared just under $300 for both shows. I sold one watch, a bookmark, two necklaces, a bracelet, and five pairs of earrings. I did also connect with a lot of nice people, some of whom signed up for the mailing list and others who requested custom orders. All in all, it was a valuable learning experience for me, but one I would not like to have to repeat regularly. ;) I can see doing a few at holiday time each year -- it's silly not to take advantage of the opportunities -- but I don't want to be one of those people who travel from place to place every weekend all during the year. I know some people love it, but it's not for me. :p

I forgot to mention last week that I started posting the Virtual Mall discounts and deals directly to the Virtual Mall's Facebook Fan Page, just to see if it worked better because the links don't show up in the Discussions section when I copy and paste the mailed version. I'm also reaching a wider audience, with 400+ "people who like this" there. ;) It seems to be going fine...I've gotten an occasional thumbs-up for an item posted or a comment. As long as no one feels like it is a constant stream of spam, I guess I will keep it up. It's still time-consuming...I can't decide if it is more or less so than doing it the other way. I'm still mailing it out for now, but down the line, I may have to cut that part out, since it is duplication of effort to some degree. :\

Being out for the entire weekend has put me behind the 8-ball with my Virtual Garage Sale, but I seem to be making progress in that endeavor, too. I will be happy when that's complete, so I can get my personal life back! :p

I have a big decision to make that I will tell you about next week. It will change a few things around here for a couple of months, but I'm not entirely sure how yet. In a way, it will contradict what I said last week about accepting offers not in my Hedgehog Concept...but in another way it indirectly supports it. We shall see...

Gotta run! Have a good week! :D
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