Cassie Donlen, lampworking, beads, jewelry, lampwork beads, glass, hoypoloi, glass beadle, glassbeadle


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The January 08 Archive

Jan. 29th: Strange weather here in St. Louis! I kid you not! At noon today the car temp said it was 72 degrees outside. It was windy but fantastic!! 3 1/2 hours later... I'm not joking either... it is snowing. There are huge snowflakes outside!!

I have some head pins ready and the silver J's are back in stock. Yippee!!!

Jan. 26: The head pins are in my hands. The problem is that I'm going to have to sort and weigh them myself. UGH! not fun to do. So I will need some time. I'll do a small amount just to try to get them ready.

I've listed a new fun bracelet on the boutique page. It's a spin off from a necklace that I entered into the Beads Of Whimsy contest. There is a small photo of the necklace on Dec. 21 posting. It is so cute in person! I didn't know what to expect. My friend Kerry told me about the contest and said I should enter since my beads are kind of whimsical. So anyway... the necklace was chosen for the exhibit which will run from March 7 - April 12 at the Joan Mondale gallery at the Textile Museum in Minneapolis, Minnesota. I'm pretty excited!

So back to the bracelet... I was playing with my camera and I have no idea what lead me to set up this photo combination but it turned out so cute that I just had to crack up! See the bracelet in the boutique page.

Jan 25th: I'm at a break between the boys Cub Scouts Derby Car races! Caiden and I came home while hubby and the boys are still at school. They are having a ball! Their cars have done great. Each of them won all 4 of their races in the session that they did. There are some faster cars there but I think they will make the next cut. Well, they ended up in the trials and brought home a trophey. I think there were about 70 cars entered and they placed 9th and 11th and then in the finals, they placed 12th and 13th. Not bad for their first year. Now they know what to do for next year. They had a ball and came home with a small trophey so life is good!

Jan. 23: Just a few updates. The stainless steel head pins have been out of stock for a few days. I should have more in a few days but will need another few days to get them sorted. So expect them available next week. I'm tellin ya..I don't think I will ever get anymore of the extra shiny ones. They just don't seem to be available any longer.

Well, my ipod touch has turned into a $1200 ipod. Good grief! That is just insane! Yep, I had to buy a new computer. The power supply was not the issue on the other computer. So we have a mother board on order but I can't afford the time it will take to sort out it's problem since that is the computer that does all my DVD and any heavy duty work loads. We had been talking about getting a new computer because it was three years old but that isn't anything fun to spend money on! But so far... (I've only synced it twice) the new touch seems to be working fine on it. I started from scratch. Got another touch, got a new itunes account, and got a new computer! If that doesn't work, than nothing will!

Jan. 18th: Head Shots....I hate these!! My old one was kind of boring. I'm finishing up the written instructions for Step By Step Wire magazine on how to make the Coconut Grove bracelet on my boutique page. They need a head shot. Of course there is no one around during the day except Caiden and he can't take a good pic. So I just help the camera up with my arm and snapped some photos. BTW, ya certainly don't want to do this straight on, it really distorts your face. Makes ya look dorky. It's bad enough I'm 40 now. I don't want to be 40 and dorky! ha! You guys just always see photos of me from a distance. Thought you might like to see a close up. Don't look to close, you might find sprinkles (as Keegan used to call them!)

CRASH!!!!!!!!!!....... Remember how I said I was in love a few weeks ago. And it happened to be with a certain electronic ipod device call the touch. Well that darn stupid thing has broken my heart and our main computer!!! Love Stinks!! Well not really but it certainly can when you focus on the material things!!

I am not joking when I say from 4:30 pm until 10:30pm last night hubby and I worked on that darn itouch. It had a software update that I had to download and it freaked out my itunes and my ipod. (BTW.... hubby hates the ipods with a passion and kept telling me from the get go to not buy it. He has had two and they both were junk and didn't work right.) Well, this one has been tempermental but with my love I've been able to get it over the bumps until last night. It hates me!!!!

Nothing that I did could make it work. Hubby steps in to the rescue and gets it unstuck but I can't sync it with itunes. Nothing works. He finally feels sorry for me and says I can load it on our main desktop that has all of my important photos... all of the DVD editing stuff, all of our family stuff... everything. So apple is so paranoid. We spent hours trying to switch everything over to his computer. They don't allow you to have two accounts open. So after uninstalling reinstalling.... yada yada.... His computer will let me sync but it won't let me log into my itunes account and download everything that I've purchased!! So we got it where I could do half on my computer... burn a disc.. take it to his computer and then load it onto my touch. Now it shouldn't be that difficult! Good grief!!! finally at 9:30 I run downstairs to make a few beads that I needed for a bracelet today. Hubby comes down 15 min later and tells me that the touch killed his computer!! He started to sync it, walked away, came back a few min. later and the entire thing was dead!!

I'm so toally bummed out!! Did I mention that this is my second touch because the first one didn't work either and I returned it? I'm cursed!! I love that darn thing when it is working!! I have no clue what is going to happen now. Luckily, hubby was very nice to me and didn't yell and scream. He thinks it might be the power supply that fried. If so, it's a fairly easy fix but over $100. If that doesn't work... instead of buying a new camera that I really want.... it looks like I will be buying a new computer! That bites!!

Jan. 16th: On to the next holiday celebration! Valentines.... Looooove is in the air.... Well something like that!

I think I waited too long and the sun is past it's prime for photos but I did get a really cool close up of the bracelet that I will be listing in the boutique. I had to make it my home page photo. Shake things up a bit and get in the mood. Soft music playing in the background, candles, chocolate on the side....oops... nope.. the chocolate is gone. I ate it!

Anyway... I still gotta clean up photos of the bracelet and get it listed but here is one photo with a black background. I gotta figure this paper out yet. There is always a learning curve when shooting on a new back ground. At least for me there is. So the bracelet will be available later today or tomorrow. And... yep... look closely... it's got those 3 darling heart buttons in it!

I need to do retakes of the other heart buttons I'm listing in the boutique. They are a tad too dark. Hopefully tomorrow will be a nice sunny day. I can tell the sun is changing positions because is used to be from 1:30 -3:30 I could get prime photos. Now about 2:30pm is my limit.

When taking photos...I don't use a light box. Just natural light. But I put my goodies in a shaded area. Not in direct sunlight. If I use a white background, I force a flash. The most important thing is taking MANY photos with different aperature settings and the macro option. I'm familar with my camera enough to know if I more than likely got a good shot but even then, you don't know until the photos are uploaded. I think I took about 12 photos of the heart close up and found a few that I really liked. Just a few quick camera/photo taking tips for beads and jewelry from Doctor Love Cassie (sorry... couldn't help myself..., I know it's corny but a gal has gotta have fun sometimes. You just pay the price by having to read it!). LASTLY...upload the pics and brighten, lighten, scrub away the grey background if needed and doctor up (no pun intened) the photos in Adobe Photoshop.That's where the best work for quality photos takes place.

Maybe I should start a "Dear Cassie" column!

Jan. 15: Okay... the party's over. Time to get back to work!! Pardon me while I go clean up all the balloons and "40's" all over my site that my darling hubby posted:-)

Jan. 14th: I see hubby hacked into my news site and added a black 40 balloon!! How am I supposed to pretend that I'm 25 when ya all know how old I am now?!

I guess it is time to grow up... I started a flickr photo account today! I even uploaded 3 photos. (the same that are listed below). Now I just gotta figure out to make a proper html link to it.

So it has been a good day so far. While driving to take the kids to school. Hubby was swell and put up 8 signs around my circle that I drive everyday for my viewing pleasure! Had breakfast out with my parents. And I'm playing on the computer while Caiden is 3 feet away playing with cars.

To be truthful, I'm glad the day has finally come. I've been celebrating for about a week now and if I have one more dinner or breakfast out, I'm going to be fat and 40! If every birthday was this much fun though I wouldn't mind having them!!

My wonderful crafty mother even made 40 tiny boxes with ribbons. I had to open up every box to get the treats. Which was a very good treat. Cash!!! The paper boxes aren't fast to make but they sure are special since they were made by her. How could you not love that?!

Here are a few photos of the heart buttons I had mentioned. They are just WAY TOO CUTE!!! I think I'm going to snatch the actual heart shape ones and make a bracelet for the boutique with them. The other round hearts will end up in the boutique. I just wanted to make a few disc beads to round off the set. These have sterling silver loops on the back that I soldered. They will work great for jewelry. Use them in dangles or attach it to a larger jump ring and use it as a clasp with a lobster claw in a bracelet. Or... for those of you that knit or sew.... oh wouldn't they look cute on something handmade?!!! (Yes, that's Dick and Jane in the photo!!! I LOVED Dick and Jane!

Finally, are you tired of reading yet.... don't you love it?.... I don't post for a week and the I come in and throw all sorts of stuff at ya!!!

Anyway.... I had to share the 2 playground bracelets that Kerry made for me in our bead exchange. They are so dog gone cute. I just love them!!

It was so inspiring to work with someone else's beads. Her awesome cab she made totally inspired me. I couldn't help thinking that the method of making the cab was so tempting to turn into a button. I'm not sure how the idea popped into my head. I do a lot of dreaming/designing in my head during all my driving the kiddies around. But the next thing I knew, I was punching out silver circles and soldering on a loop. So between Kerry and I, you will see new buttons with a silver loop floating around both of our web sites.

Jan. 12: I had to crack up yesterday at my goofy son Keegan. I walk into the play room and he is holding our cat down on the table and in his hand is one of those $10 hand messagers that vibrate. He was rubbing it up and down the cat's back and no... Tippy didn't look like he was enjoying it!!! What a dork! I would never in a million years think of giving the cat a massage with one of those things! How do kids come up with these ideas!!?

My friend Kerry and I exchanged the jewelry back. It was so much fun to do. I need to take pics of the playground bracelets she made me with my beads. They are so fun and really quite comfortable to wear.

Here is what I ended up designing with her beads. You can see the before pic on the Dec. 15th posting. She made the coolest cab bead. I turned it into a button with a silver shank and used it as part of the clasp.

Her cab was so inspiring. Way too many things to do with them. But I did make some heart buttons for valentines that I will post in the boutique. I just have to make the silver finding for the button part yet.

Jan. 6th: Well even giving the finger licking, the cake was still good! We had Christmas in the country at my grandmother's house this weekend. It was a nice visit with all the relatives. I'm glad to say that all the Christmas stuff is finally over. It seems like it always takes a few days to get the routine back in full swing. I still need to return a few of the Christmas gifts the kids didn't want and then I'm really done!!!

I just added a bead set and matching silver bezel that I made to the boutique page. I've had these sitting here for at least 3 months. I kept thinking I would make some jewelry with them but just haven't had the chance.

Jan. 4th It's my hubby's birthday today! Happy birthday sweetie! I'm not tellin what year! AND I'm especially not telling how old I will be in 10 days!! Lets just say it's an even number and you can count by 10's to reach it!! I so hate growing old!!! I keep saying I want to buy boobs! But by the time I get around to affording them, my whole body will be full of wrinkles and then who cares! ha!!!

Caiden (3 yr old) is so funny. I can't turn my back for a second. He kept having excuses and coming downstairs from his nap. After the 4th time, he was "hungry" and wanted some cheezits. (In between his trips downstairs, I was decorating and put hubby's cake on the table with all his candles on top. )This is my time to work so I set him at the kitchen table with the box while I was 10 feet away printing out shipping labels and doing computer stuff. Yes, the cake was on the kitchen table with him. I didn't really give it a second thought. Especially since when we were picking out the cake, he was on the floor crying because "Daddy wants a Sponge Bob cake. Daddy no like chocolate cake!". Which really means that Caiden wants a sponge bob cake!

All of a sudden my ears tune into him saying...."yummmmmmm good.......yummmmmmm good...... yummmmm good....." Yep, you guessed right, I turned around and he had put his finger around the entire outside of the cake taking licks. His fingers and face were all full of chocolate icing! I just had to laugh!

Jan. 1st: Happy New Year! My how time flies. I'm not sure that is a good thing either!

For anyone going to Walt Disney World's Magic Kingdom in Orlando or you will be in the area in the upcoming months and want a chance to go to Magic Kingdom at a reduced rate, then I have a good opportunity for you:-) I just listed four 1 day passes for 2 adults and 2 children for Magic Kingdom on Ebay. We went to the Halloween party in Sept. and it rained the entire night. When we left early, the cast members were handing out passes to come back to Magic Kingdom for 1 day. Now that was a nice thing to do and a $279 value. I'm not sure if we are going back this year and if we do, we'll buy passes for the week so we don't really need the ones I'm selling. Just click on any of the words in this paragraph and it will take you to the auction.