Monday, August 30, 2010

What happened to the home classes??

I know the local ladies are frothing at the mouth, wondering why I haven't had any home classes in months. Don't despair! They will be back! You might start looking at your December calendars....

What happened is that I needed to clear some space on my calendar to get my life back in order here at home. For five years now, I've been building Tapestry Beads and my teaching schedule across the country, and it's been nonstop go go go. I'm not complaining a bit! I thrive on being busy, and I love what I do, so it's been nothing bad for me. Except. I've finally come to the point where my disorganization was affecting my ability to grow and have design time, and not have a bazillion people waiting on me.

So putting the home classes on hold until December has allowed me to do a ton of catching up. When the ladies come back, they'll find a whole new house! New flooring throughout. A new bead cabinet and some slatwall in the bead shopping area. The bathroom they use will have been renovated (floor, vanity, faucet, lights, fixtures.) The bead storage room will (hopefully) be organized. And unseen, but critical: my paperwork and accounting will be organized and up-to-date. I'll have new classes ready to go, and I'll be much more calm than they've seen me in a long while!!

We plan on unveiling the changes in the house in our Annual Holiday Open House. And at least one class will be scheduled in December too. So hang on! It's coming!

Sunday, August 29, 2010

Plans vs. Reality

What I had planned on getting accomplished this weekend:
  • Finishing a Rosetta necklace sample, and possibly getting a second substantially done.
  • Mailing out all the packages that need to get mailed
  • Pedicure
  • Writing a bunch of instructions
  • Making some kits that we're out of stock on
  • Installing my new bed headboard
What really happened this weekend:
  • Emergency babysitting of my nephew while my sister-in-law took my niece to the doctor for pink eye
  • Flooring shopping with Mom - we picked our laminate wood floor and two kinds of tile (one for the kitchen/laundry, and one for the bathrooms)
  • Working on the Rosetta necklace sample, but not until late Sunday night. I may stay up and finish it tonight just so I can check it off the list.
  • Installed the headboard - it looks so great! I haven't had a headboard on my bed in over 15 years, and I'm totally glad I bought it.
  • Several naps.
Soo...can you guess what's on the agenda for this coming week??? Lots of beading samples and lots of instruction writing.. A little cleaning.

It will be a few weeks before we can get the installation of all the new flooring scheduled because we have to involve a plumber (I'm going to replace my bathroom vanity at the same time) and an electrician (we're going to run electrical under the laminate and have an outlet under our side table for lighting and computer) and lastly, we've got a mosaic medallion that's going to be installed in our entryway that's coming from Israel, so we have to wait until that arrives. Not a bad thing since I have to clean up the nightmare in the bead room. I'm not sure what I'll have to bribe myself with to get THAT done. A trip to Italy, perhaps??? I'm thinking a piece of cheesecake ain't gonna cut it.

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Moving without moving

Mom and I moved into our current house three years ago, and while we love it to death (especially the natural light shining from a skylight that bathes the kitchen in a reverential glow) there have been changes we've wanted to make. The biggest one? Replacing the carpet and vinyl flooring throughout the entire house. The carpet was okay when we first moved in, but the wear and tear from our four critters, the heavy foot traffic from my home classes, and the light carpet color, have reduced it to a mass of stains.

The cats, dogs, and students won't be going anywhere, so we need to come up with a replacement solution. We've always loved the look and durability of stained concrete floors, so we had a guy come to give us a quote this week. After he left, Mom and I looked at each other in shock and tried to figure out what Plan B might consist of! Why? Because not only was it going to cost $12,000, but they wanted us to move ourselves and all our belongings out of the house for 3-4 days. SHUDDER. I had moving. HATE it. Passionately and painfully. And to have to move and then move right back in the same place??? It kind of makes me want to cry.

We decided that if we did hardwoods and tile instead, at least we could take it in stages and not have to move everything at once. So now we're researching that option. I tell you what...I think Mom may have finally figured out the only way to force me to clean the bead room...

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Back from Bead Fest Philly

I don't even know where to start reporting about the whole Philly trip! Should I start with how Mom got all irritated with me at 6am the day we were catching the plane because we had planned on leaving then, and I still hadn't showered? We ended up leaving at 6:30 and it worked out perfectly, despite a small panic when we discovered the longest lines EVER at the Southwest counter and the security line. I guess it was all back to school traffic? Very unexpected at the Austin airport.

Then there was the woman behind us on one leg of the flight who spent five minutes explaining in great detail to her seatmate about the doll she hand felted with a tomato head, and the arms were the flower stems, and the hands were holding....a potato. At the point she said potato, Mom and I both burst out in loud, inappropriate laughter that made my stomach ache from the silly of it all.

I taught three classes while we were there, and Mom held down booth duty by herself on Friday while I was in the classroom. Saturday and Sunday we faced the masses of beaders together. What a wonderful show it was! Huge crowds, happy people, and LOTS OF BEADS! I got to meet a number of folks in person who I'd never been lucky enough to encounter at shows before, like the awesome Paulette Baron. We chatted away for the longest time, and if I hadn't had to get back to the show floor, it would likely have been longer. I got to hug on friends, and make new ones. I think my Friday class of Night at the Opera students might have been my most fun national teaching experience ever! The ladies in the class all were funny and silly (my kind of people!) and we giggled our way through it. I adopted Leah Ready's mother, Joyce, who was in my class as my second mother because I adore her so. And getting Leah as a sister in the process ain't bad either!

As we slowly sold out of many of our kits over the weekend, I discovered that I had underpacked for the show. Agh! So next year I'll be making the trip to Philly a road trip and driving instead. That way we'll be able to be much better prepared, with our full booth setup which includes lights and the cash register. I've already talked with two area bead stores about possibly teaching there the weekend before and the weekend after Bead Fest Philly 2011, which will not only be delightful, but help pay for the extra driving costs too.

This week I'm working on business stuff, to try to free up some dedicated beading time next week. I have orders to ship, some instructions to write, and some class info to send off to the ladies at Beadoholique in Houston.

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Finally, the long awaited BnB Show stash

I think I promised y'all these photos about a month ago. Maybe even six weeks. But here they are! Now remember, I hardly had a moment of time to shop while I was at the Bead & Button Show this year, so it's not as extensive a shopping haul as I would have liked. When I submitted my class proposals for next year's show, I told them I can't teach on Friday - my plan is to spend that day at least in the Expo Hall so I can help at the booth and both Mom and I can go browsing.

First off, one of the special things (among many!) about the Meet the Teacher's event each year, is that Swarovski sponsors it, and they provide a special gift for the teachers. This year's swag was the best ever!
You know it's going to be good when you get a whole box...
OH MY! New colors and shapes and I'm feeling faint now...
I have to admit, I haven't actually delved into the box yet to use the components because I get so much pleasure out of the whole treasure chest nature of it. I don't want to open it up and find empty spots!

I also managed to do some quick focal bead damage.

And then there was my spree at the always awesome Green Girl Studios booth. I took an overall shot, and then some close ups of my very favorite clasps.
I couldn't resist that cute Puffer Fish!

Green Girls Studios Flower & Bee clasp
Smaller scale flower & leaf clasp
The key to my heart!
 Excuse me...I think I need to go fondle them all again...

Monday, August 16, 2010

So much going on!

You know how when you avoid a task for a while, it becomes bigger and bigger in your head to catch up on it, and so you avoid it more, and then it becomes bigger yet and it's a vicious cycle from which there is no escape except just DOING it and then you figure out it wasn't so bad after all? Yeah. That's me and this blog! So I'm declaring this clean slate day - no more blog avoidance!!

I've had a lot of good things to share with you, too. Rather than make one HUGE blog post, I'm writing several right now and scheduling them to post over the next week while Mom and I are away at Bead Fest Philly. I'm such a tease!!

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Possible New Kit

From June:
For a while I've been  working intermittently on a lariat for a possible new kit. Since Jill left me all alone last weekend while she went and had fun at the Shreveport (LA) bead retreat, I had to entertain my self. I spent Saturday with my adorable granchildren, getting a pedicure, and running errands. But on Sunday, I worked like crazy on the lariat. It still isn't done, but it's close!