Wednesday, September 30, 2009


I haven't posted so far this week, but I think I have a good excuse. Her name is Lily and she weighs less than 2 pounds, but boy does she have a lot of energy! We adopted her this week from Bonnie, one of my students and friends. It wasn't an easy choice for me to adopt another kitty. My heart is still so broken after losing my Maxie last year. But, when Bonnie contacted me about this little sweetheart, something inside me said that my other kitty Sophie would be happier with someone to play with. I know she misses Max as much as Paul and I do. No kitty will ever replace him, he was the only being that I can honestly say that I loved the first moment that I saw him. I think I will miss him for all of the rest of my days. But I'm beginning to see that having another little kitten in my life doesn't mean that I have to forget him, in fact quite the opposite. She reminds me of all of the goofy things he did as a kitten. She makes me smile and I think she'll be good for all of us.

Saturday, September 26, 2009


Iowa 21, Penn State 10

Paul and Suzi and I watched the game tonight at our house. All week long, I had predicted, irrationally I suppose, that the unranked Hawkeyes would win against #5 Penn State. I don't know why. I think they have a lot of heart and drive and some decent talent, but Penn State had the home field advantage and the pre-game buzz was certainly that they would dominate. After the first 3 games that Iowa has played so far, I think they're far better that their unranked status. The game was at the huge, intimidating Beaver Stadium in State College Pennsylvania in truly awful weather. The book makers had Iowa losing by at least 10. Well, that didn't happen. Iowa stunned Penn State by beating them 21-10. I still don't quite believe that it was real. My throat hurts a little from all of the yelling, so I'm pretty sure that it really happened!

Thursday, September 24, 2009


A palette of enamel and fine silver hearts in various states of assembly, getting ready to be made into earrings for my fall shows. The finished ones are in the center of the palette.

A close up of copper hearts enameled in Sea Green, from Schauer Enamels. I love their enamel colors, they're luscious!

I'm teaching an torch-firing on copper enameling class at Bead Haven this Saturday, and fortunately or unfortunately (depending upon your perspective!) it's full. We've added an all day enameling class on October 17th from 10-4. We'll have time to get a little bit more involved in the nuances of enamels and work on combining colors too. Well have many delicious enamel colors to play with! If you've ever wanted to try enameling, I really encourage you to. I've been having great fun playing with it! If you're interested in the class on October 17th, please call Bead Haven at 319-247-2323

Saturday, September 19, 2009


Today was one of those picture perfect early fall days.

Paul enjoying meat on a stick. I think this a midwestern thing.

Paul in front of the bronze statue of Nile Kinnick.

Paul checking scores on his phone. We were a little early (like an hour!).

The Hawkeye Marching Band.

Final Score, 27-17.

It was a great day today in Iowa City. It was perfect weather, though a little warm for football. Arizona rolled into town for the afternoon. The Wildcats have a place in my heart because I love Tucson and even lived there for a short time. Also, their coach is Mike Stoops who was a player here during the Hayden Fry era (yet another of the many contributions Hayden Fry made to the sport of college football). The Cats looked tough in the first half, but the second half was mostly the Hawkeye's. We play Arizona again next year in Tucson and I think they'll be a force to be reckoned with. I'm gonna try to be there to see it.

Wednesday, September 16, 2009


Riveted, enameled hearts.

I've been playing with enamels a lot lately and have been trying to find a cute way to combine them with silver. Since I love riveting and the look of riveting, so I decided to make silver overlays that are, you guessed it, riveted onto enameled copper. I didn't show a side view, but there are spacers between the silver and the enamel which adds a bit of height and dimension. I like them, they're cute and whimsical, but also kind of pointy and tough. This particular pair was for my friend Cindi's birthday yesterday (Happy Birthday, Cindi!) but I will have others in this and lots of different colors soon for my fall shows and my Etsy store.

Tuesday, September 15, 2009


Water-etched and molded pieces that my students did in class.

Oops! Almost forgot Sara's.

Mindy and my lovely assistant Anne.

Pat and Penny, working away.

I took my show on the road this past weekend to a store called Bead Happy in Cedar Falls, Iowa. We did mold making and water-etching. They did such a great job and I had a great time. I hope they did to. Thanks to Penny, Peggy, Sara, Mindy, Shallie, Monica, and Pat, I had a great time with you and it was wonderful to meet all of you. And thank you to my friend Anne who played the role of my lovely assistant. It was a great help and I really appreciated it.

Friday, September 11, 2009


I won't be watching the game today, I'm off to Cedar Falls to teach a class. I'll be there in spirit, though. I have Paul and others ready to text and email my iPhone during the game to keep me updated. Honestly, I really don't have problems with Iowa State. Ames is a perfectly lovely town and the vet school, one of the best in the world, is close to my heart as they took care of my kitty Max a couple of times in the past. But this one time every year, something comes over me and I just hate it when the Hawks lose to the Cyclones. The clones can win all of the rest of their games, just not this one, please. Feel free to email or text me updates during the game, I'd appreciate it. Unless of course you're a cyclone fan and you happen to be winning, then please, no gloating. Thank you.


"There's rosemary, that's for remembrance; pray, love, remember". -Shakespeare (Hamlet, Act 4 Scene 5).

Click here to see the names and faces of the nearly 3000 people who died 8 years ago today.

Tuesday, September 8, 2009


Earrings made with a mold made from a button that belonged to my Great-Grandmother.

A swirly water-etched piece.

This Saturday the 12th of September, I will be teaching a class at Bead Happy in Cedar Falls, Iowa. We will be making molds and pieces from those molds and unique water-etched pieces. Molds are a great way to try PMC for the first time. I have a collection of old buttons that are great for making molds as they're a prefect size for earrings. Students will be able to use these or small items that they choose to bring. We will also be making a water-etched piece in the same class. This is also a good technique for beginners as it's a bit more advanced than the molding and it creates a completely unique texture. We will also be learning about finishing and patination techniques on silver. The class is from 1-5 on Saturday. If you are interested in joining us please contact Bead Happy at 319-277-4386.

Monday, September 7, 2009


Paul loves his Hawkeyes.

The House That Nile Kinnick Built.

Half time.

Suz and Me. I look a little crabby don't I? Gary is hiding behind Suzi.


Once again, It's football time. It was pretty hot, so it didn't really feel like football, but still the Hawkeye train rolled on. We had a good time even though the Hawks nearly lost to a great UNI team. They pulled it out in the end by blocking not one, but two attempted field goals by the Panthers in the final second of the game. It was the weirdest finish that a lot of us had ever seen. That's the Hawks for you. It can never be simple. Maybe that's why we love them.
There were some other triumphs during the game besides football victories. There were a few personal technological ones too. Let's just say that I'm not the most technologically capable person out there. I got an Iphone recently and I'm determined to learn to use it to it's full capability. I haven't yet discovered all that this amazing thing can do. During the game I took all of the photos posted here (pretty good for a camera phone, huh?), posted some of them on Facebook, emailed a friend, texted another and surfed the internet for other football scores, all from inside the stadium. The only thing I didn't do was talk on it. It's so loud in there that I wouldn't have been able to hear a thing! Not too bad, if I say so myself. Maybe by the next home game in two weeks I'll post a blog entry from the game.

Friday, September 4, 2009


When Hayden chose to coach at Iowa over two other teams he said it was because of the passion of the fans. He mused that "Every time the University of Iowa would make a first down, the crowd would just erupt. And I thought, what in the world would they do if they ever scored a touchdown?"

Well, it's here again. Football season. This year the Hawkeyes kick off their season with an in state rival, the University of Northern Iowa, a tough team that nearly won their division's National Championship last year. They came within 40 seconds of doing so. The Hawkeye faithful are keeping our fingers crossed. The football frenzy kicks off today with he first annual Fry Fest which is honoring former Hawkeye football coach Hayden Fry. For those of you who don't follow football and don't know who Hayden Fry is, well you really should. Of course, he was one of the most successful coaches in college football history and is in the College Football Hall of Fame. He is the winningest coach in Iowa history. He turned Iowa, who had suffered through 17 consecutive losing seasons, in to a winning team. Under Fry, Iowa beat Iowa State 15 consecutive times, which makes me happy (sorry all of my Cyclone friends!). In his two decades at Iowa he produced countless players that ended up in the NFL and at least 10 players and assistant coaches that became college head coaches (including Kirk Ferentz, our current head coach at Iowa). But most significantly, when Fry was a new coach at SMU he recruited and played Jerry LeVias, the first African American player in the Southwest Conference. I suppose now a days, that doesn't sound like a big deal, but in 1966 in Texas, believe me, it was. The hate and abuse that LeVias and Fry suffered for that was terrible. Despite all of that Levias was an a star player who won many awards and went on to be the Houston Oilers Rokie of the year in 1969. Without Fry, Levias could never have broken down those barriers. Not too bad for a good ole boy from west Texas. Thank you Coach Fry.