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


Welcome to my News page. This is my little place to share life....a journal of sorts...dedicated to ramblings, observations, discoveries and cool new things. Find past postings in the Archive link above.

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This is the January 2009 Archive Page

Jan 27th: Whew, my eyes are fried! I just got done posting on Tickle Me Beads the listing to purchase the new Step By Step Wire Spring Issue 2009 magazine that features on page 33 my Wonder Rings. These are so fun and easy to make!! Give it a try! The magazine is not supposed to hit the news stands until Feb. 2 if I remember right. I have 15 copies in my hands and those of you that have a subscription, should be getting them now.

If you remember right, I think I designed these last summer. The magazines work so far out in advance that it takes a long time for them to be printed. These rings are so fun and with the brass (or stainless steel screw) they are interchangable. It isn't the fastest process to swap out the beads though and since the rings are easy to make, just whip up a bunch of them for your cute little fingers!

So here is the remaining scoop. You can purchase everything you need to make these including all of the supplies and magazine over at Tickle Me (Click on the name)

I tried to make it easy for you to find everything you need and in the magazine link the supply list is listed with a link to each item available for purchase. This is the best place to find everything you need to get started. I'm also posting the break down here with the link and you can read through the list to see if you need any of these fine tools. I have to tell ya that you might want to look at the list just to see what cool tools are out there in the beading world. These are all great and I use them for all sorts of projects. You might just find a new best friend! (like those Power Max wire cutters totally rock!)

Copy of Step By Step Wire Spring issue 2009
Lampwork Beads by Cassie Donlen
2 hole screw down punch
The Bomb in files - Grobet Brand
OR...... the economy file
1" Long Brass Screw Set
or 1" long Stainless Steel Screw Set
4x1mm sterling silver wire
Black Plastic Ring Mandrel
Pro Polish Pads
Power Max Wire Cutters to cut wire.
Stamping Supplies if desired
These Nut drivers are perfect for the Screw sets!
Or just a pair of flat nose pliers will work for the screw sets too.

Whew! I think that covers it! Can you believe it took me almost 2 hours to do all this? SLOW!! Then I couldn't remember how to do the drop down box for options on buying the lampwork beads over at Tickle Me and that took some time to relearn. Nothing is ever fast and easy is it? Oh well.. what fun would that be?

The kids have a snow day from school today so now I'm off to go get them ready to head up to the school and sled on the hill. Just what I don't want to do!!

Jan 26th: Well I can't thank you enough for all the fun emails about Connor's Pillow Pup! He feels so special and is just enthralled that people can like something that he "A 9 year old" made!! So we made an extra one to sell in the boutique. Except we added a pink ribbon for us girls!

I have lots to talk about with the new release of the Step By Step Wire Spring issue that is slowly leaking out. I have a ring design in this issue which you just might want to make! They are super easy!

I have so much to do right now (working on orders!) so I'll come back tomorrow and give more details but check out my boutique page to see what I'm talking regarding the rings. All the supplies can be found at Tickle Me Be Back tomorrow!!

Jan 25th: PILLOW PUPS! What a busy day yesterday. The boys had Pine Wood Derby Car races all day yesterday for cub Scouts and then Connor worked on his school project all evening. His class has an assignment where the kids have to create/make something and then design an advertisement poster for it. He has to set a price and then do the ad. Then he can decide if he wants to offer it for sale to his classmates. They all use their paper pretend money they earn in class to buy the stuff.

He was trying to come up with ideas. He is pretty creative and suggested maybe drawing a creation and then making it up with fabric. He had so much fun drawing up different designs and then settled on a puppy. I basically just guided him through the entire process. He did 99% of it all by himself.I asked him what he was going to call them and he came up with all on his own..."Pillow Pups". How cute is that? Then I said he needed a tag line for his ad and I can't remember now off the top of my head but something about having a better night's sleep with a Pillow Pup.

He drew an enlarged copy of the dog and then cut out each shape for a pattern. We went to the fabric store and he chose what fabric he wanted. I have to admit I love his choices and I was so excited he picked something more funky than traditional. Then I set up the old sewing machine and taught him how to use it. He LOVED this part. I felt pretty safe since the needle has that metal foot protecting it and he did great. Then he stuffed it and used the needle to finish up the stuffing opening.

He said he felt like a worker at Build A Bear. He is sooooo proud of himself and it turned out soooo cute. I gotta hand it to him. He did a fantastic job. Now Keegan wants to make something so I sent him off to the drawing board!

Jan 23: I have to admit that this little puppy is really starting to grow on me. He is so cute and fiesty. The boys are loving him. Caiden and him are having fun together. Since Caiden only goes to school a few hours each day, they have lots of bonding time together.Caiden has one of those red chairs from Pottery Barn Kids that has his name stitched on the front side.

I swear the dog thinks the chair has his name on it. The chair gets moved around the house but right now it is in the living room that is connected to the kitchen and it is all hard wood floors. Caiden pushes Dobby back and forth all along the rooms. The crazy dog just sits there and enjoys the ride. I laughed so hard the first time I saw him doing this.

Jan. 22: Here is a picture of the main train table that I was speaking about yesterday. They have holes cut out in the center where the kids can crawl under and then stand in the middle of the table. Caiden is in there with the red shirt! Ha, see the lady in the black? She spilled an entire large cup of McDonald's Diet Coke all over the floor while standing by the train table!

Jan 21st p.m. posting... Better late than never... Here is a pic of the beads I posted in the boutique. Well all except the heart rings. To learn how to make these rings... go over to the on-line lessons at Tickle Me Beadsand the instructions are downloadable lessons. If you want the heart bead. You can order them at Tickle Me in the lampwork beads section.

Aren't these cute cube shape beads? They would make a really cute bracelet or even necklace!! They are listed on the boutique page.

Come back later today.... I've got my groove coming back. Well at least the beginning feeling of it. I've got a few cute Valentine things to post in the boutique. I've gotta take pics and all that jazz so it won't happen till late afternoon as I promised Caiden I would take him to this incredible train station store to play on their train tables.

This is a small company that set up shop in an old hotel by the train tracks. It has slowly gotten national attention. Their trains are fantastic and since we started hanging out there when the big boys were 2 years old, it is safe to say that we have a boat load of their trains. I'll have to take a picture so you can see the train table they made for the kids to play. Then upstairs they have rooms full of train tables for parties. It is a dream come true for the little fellas.

See you back here this afternoon!

Jan. 20th: The sun is shining, snow flakes have been falling, and it is COLD... but life is good so I'm not complaining!

I started out on one mission yesterday but got side tracked. I found this receipe for cupcake lollipops that are soooooo cute. So I went to Michael's Craft store to buy the supplies. When I was there, they had this silicone mold for brownie bites. Hey... those look WAY MUCH easier and have the same kind of look. My kids love brownies so I thought I would give those a go. Well I was being cheap and only bought one mold. That was a mistake because it takes forever to bake one tray at a time. I think one box of brownie mix makes a tad over 2 molds. AND.... you are supposed to let the brownies cool completely before popping them out of the mold. I didn't have time for that so they didn't set well and the tops were getting broken off. Oh well.... lesson learned and I'm better prepared for next time. The boys will be thrilled when they come home from school and they still taste wonderful. So I guess I will still look like a rock star to 4, 9, and 10 year old boys!

I'm so not giving up on the cupcake pops. Those are next. They look like a lot of work though so to be saved till I have more time. If you have more than one mold, these are really fast. Just bake them, pop them out and let them cool. Pop a lollipop stick in them but don't go all the way to the tip or they will fall down the stick. Then melt some chocolate wafers in a paper bowl (less messy!). Dip the brownie bite in the chocolate and then put sprinkles on top and let them dry. I bought some white styrofoam while at Michaels to sit the sticks in while the chocolate is still wet. Lastly. whatever you do, don't let the chocolate get wet. Even one drop or it will get all clumpy and useless. So if you lick your spoon. Get a new one because that will have the same effect.

Jan. 19th: Hotel for dogs was BUSY TODAY!! I had no clue that it would be such a popular movie. We went to the theater about 20 min before the movie and it was all sold out! So we went to a different theater and had to burn over an hour waiting for it to start and that show was packed. There were no empty seats!

I've been busy baking up hearts to mail off. Here is the batch that came out of the kiln. All cleaned up and ready for me to wire wrap them up.

Jan. 18th: I was going to say my how the weekend flew by but then I remembered that the kids are off school tomorrow. So I guess it is kind of like a 3 day weekend. Even though hubby is working. The boys really want to see that "Hotel For Dogs" movie. It looks really cute so I guess that is on our plans for the day off.

I've been making a lot of those cute black and pink heart hang tags in the boutique. Looks like those are pretty popular! In the mean time, I did manage to list a new bead set on the boutique page and I had a fun surprise as someone chose my beads to be listed on the Etsy Treasure page . I think the listing expires tomorrow night though.

Jan 15th: If only every day could be such a reading day for my boys! Yes, for those of you mothers who have 8-10 year old boys, then you are probably familiar with the Diary Of A Wimpy Kid books. The latest one came out today. I made sure to go to the bookstore and buy each of the boys their own copy. They read these books over and over constantly! They are over here laughing out loud and comparing what page they are on. Even while eating dinner they were reading. As soon as they walked in the door from school they were reading! Can't complain about that!

Jan. 14th: Guess I will be like all of the department stores and throw out a few valentine beads! Just jumping from one holiday to the next! BTW, yes... the hearts are sitting on an apple. Caiden wanted one during lunch and I needed something to prop up the hearts and low and behold, that apple looked like a mighty fine prop. HA!

I have started slipping in my torch time making samples of flower beads that will be used in my next lampworking DVD series which will concentrate all on flowers!! I love flowers and this will be a really fun DVD!

Jan. 13th: Better late than never I guess. I finally got the stamped bracelet "Heart On A Wire" kit completed. It is available for purchase over at Tickle Me

And.. I've been playing with my new tablet. Can you tell from the graphics in the photo? I'm not great yet and have a lot to learn but it is so much fun to play!

Jan 10th: It has been a nice lazy day. I got some beads made for an order and hooked up my new birthday present from hubby. And in the mean time, I allowed computer updates on my laptop and it messed up my website editor that I use and we can no longer get it to work. So here I am trying out a new program that is all kind of strange and different. I tell ya, it is always something and nothing is ever fast.

But let me show you my new present... these have always intriqued me and I have been interested in getting one for about 6 months. When hubby came home from work and said he knew of something that would be perfect for me I jumped up and down and said YES! I've been wanting one. It is a Wacom Tablet Intuos3 6"x8" pad.

Okay... so what does that mean? It is basically this really cool tablet that uses a special pen instead of a mouse. You use it on the tablet and it will respond like a mouse but is more receptive and responsive. The art department at hubby's work uses one for their photo editing on Adobe photoshop. I edit all of my photos in Adobe photoshop and this new tool will make it faster and easier to manage. will work in programs like Adobe Illustrator and you can draw and do things that aren't as fluid with a mouse. There is a learning curve to it but it is easier to use than I was expecting. I'm pretty certain that hubby is going to get one for him at work also. He does a lot of excel spread sheets and has developed carpel tunnel from using a mouse all day and has trained his other hand to use the mouse but there are still issues. The pen vs. the mouse I think will give him a lot of relief.

Jan 8th: Just a quick update on the Czech Beads monthly club over at Tickle Me Beads. The shopping cart was having problem recognizing the free shipping option I had set up and stated at check out that we don't currently ship to the address listed. Well that certainly isn't true. So I went in and reduced the price of the starter membership and it will charge a $1.34 first class shipping charge to get the price back into the original $22 range. Problem fixed kind of sorta!

Jan. 7th: Sigh... back to a routine. The kids finally went back to school on Tuesday. That was a really long Christmas break. They went kicking and screaming back to school but such is life. I just miss the relaxing mornings of no hussle and bustle getting the kids ready and the 35 min circle I do every morning taking the kids to school. I really wish I was a morning person but I'm just not. Granted now with the puppy, there are no more lazy relaxing mornings and that is when I don't like having a dog! Speaking of dogs... the pup is doing good but he is still a lot of work and stress and is a bigger adjustment than what I expected. But he is starting to blend in with the family well. Once we get him potty trained then it will be much easier. I just can't wait till we are past that point.

I took the kids to the Country Buffet tonight. They were so funny. I think they have done a breakfast one with my parents before but that was a few years ago. You would have thought they had died and gone to heaven! Keegan's first trip landed him with 3 plates and a bowl of cheese dip. They were in hog heaven. Although at the end, Connor had overindulged and kept saying "remind me never to come here again"!

I don't think I mentioned that I finally decided to place my first advertisement in a beading magazine. I placed the ad to give more exposure to Tickle Me but also included Glass Beadle info within the ad. The ad turned out really cute (at least I think so since I deisigned it:-) and is in the current issue of Step By Step Beads and then will be in the next issue of Step By Step Wire. I thought I would experiment a tad to see if it will bring more traffic vs the Google Ads. I was really disappointed on where they placed my ad though in the Step By Step Beads issue. It is in the very back of the magazine in around all the black and white print that I think talks about Bead groups if I remember right. I just know that it felt that is was buried. I'm not sure if I will continue to advertise since it is expensive but you just don't know until you try.

Speaking of Tickle Me Beads. There is a fun monthly Czechs bead club that is featured on the site. You all know that I just love to work with Czech beads in my jewelry designs. This is a great way to get a surprise collection of high quality Czech beads each month. Go check it out by clicking here

Jan. 4th: Today was hubby's birthday and we spent the day trying to make him feel special! I just listed a few small bead sets in the boutique. Go check them out. Here is a pic of one of them.

Jan 3rd: Another Lazy Day! I've decided to get back on track that I'm just going to have to make a TO DO LIST every morning. Otherwise I'm all over the board and doing 20 projects with nothing getting completed! On the other hand, hubby is rocking and rolling on the basement. He just installed 6 recessed lights in my workshop to complete the 3rd circuit he had to wire up and he is just about ready for dry wall. I am SOOOOOOOOOOOO jumping up and down for joy!

I really really need to take more photos. Something I never do of the kids anymore. Bad me... I grabbed the camera and took a few pics of the big boys playing outside with the dog while hubby was relaxing in the hot tub. I won't complain since he worked all day! We are off to see Bedtime Stories shortly. Hubby and I saw Benjamin Button the other night. We don't get to many big people movies but I have to say that I just LOVED this movie. It was wonderful and even though I got all teary eyed in the end I walked out of the theater so glad that we had come to see it.

Jan 1st 2009: Wishing you a happy new year! What a totally lazy day. We all slept in (including the puppy! YEA!) and I have done nothing all day except hanging out in bed watching the Sci Fi Channel Twilight Zone marathon and playing on my computer. It's noon though and the kids are hungry so I guess I gotta get up and fix some lunch!

I just listed a few bead sets on my boutique page. Other than that. Not much is going on. I need to do some bead work and get a few things ready to mail but I have declared this day my lazy day. I never get those and it feels grand!