Monday, March 26, 2012

Artisan Jewelry Meets Air Force Charity Ball

On Saturday night Curt and I had the honor of attending the annual Air Force Charity Ball up in Springfield, Virginia.  It's a huge shindig where lots of Air Force big wigs, both past and present, raise funds for the Air Force Aid Society.  A huge part of the event is the silent auction.  A couple of years ago I made donation of jewelry and have been doing so ever since.  I love being able to bring my little crafty side into supporting Airmen.  It helps tamp down my inner cynic.
This year's event raised over $700K for the Society.  Amazing.  What's great is that 100% of that money will go directly to supporting Airmen and their families who need help.

Here's the set of baubles I created for the occasion...
I wanted to focus on the highest quality, most lovely lampwork beads so I picked some from my favorite artists:
The amazing necklace focal is from Donna Millard.
The bracelet focal is from Julianna Cannon.
And the earrings feature swirls from Libelula.

I didn't get to wear any cool jewelry that night since we were in uniform.  The only adornments are medals and badges.  Whoo hoooo.  But, I did get to see lots of lovely ladies in gowns which made me kinda thankful that I get to cover up with a cummerbund and jacket and don't have to worry about anything form-fitting or arm-showing. haaaaaaaaaa  Another reason to stay in the Air Force...I don't have to wear formal gowns! 

Friday, March 23, 2012

20 Years...Seriously?

Today, 23 March 2012, I mark the 20th anniversary of my first day at basic training.
I was 20 years old.   Now I'm 40.  What the hell?!  haaaaaaaaa
I wasn't really sure what I'd gotten myself into at the time, but the big bay full of beds and lockers and scary instructors yelling eventually gave way to a life of order.  
Well, there's some kind of order to it, I guess.  
In 20 years I've lived in Texas, Indiana, Ohio, Washington, Alabama, Italy, Qatar, DC, and Virginia.  
I've met some of the most amazing people and I've met some dumbass people.
I've been frustrated to the point of crying and been overjoyed and elated to tears.
I can't believe my entire adult life I've been wearing combat boots to work.  
Okay, sometimes I had to wear really ugly black shoes, but you know what I mean.  
I really never imagined this day would come to pass.   
It seems kind of like any other since I'm getting up, drinking coffee, and heading off to give my best to the blue and to my country in the little bit of email cubicle world I inhabit.  Sometimes I forget that I'm a part of something a little bit bigger than just me and the folks around me and our computers and our email and our bureaucracy.  
Now, I'm excited to see what's next.
And, no, I'm not talking about retirement.  At least not quite yet.  
I still like being in charge of stuff.  haaaaaaaaaaaaaa
These pics were taken in a photo booth at the little mini-mall on Lackland Air Force Base in 1992.  It was probably a Sunday afternoon on one of the few days we had some liberty.  
I'm sorry to report that I no longer have those glasses in my spectacle inventory.

Sunday, March 18, 2012

Pretty Yarn is Awesome for Macro Sunday

Back before Christmas, my mom gave me a great book to read:  The Beach Street Knitting and Yarn Society, by Gil McNeil.  It was a fun, quick read and featured a neat little yarn shop.  The visual of pretty textures and colors and the overall comfort of a place like that made it some great fiction.  Lo' and behold, I stumbled on a store just like it in Williamsburg!  When I walked into Knitting Sisters I immediately realized that I was going to have a serious problem with yarn...it was all beautiful and I wanted a little bit of everything.  I had a slight problem, though:  I didn't know how to knit.  I've been a crocheter, before, but was scared of the whole two-needle concept.  So, I signed up for a class and ended up teaching myself to knit.  Now I can't stop.
I adore being able to sit on the couch and make what's essentially fabric out of a single thread.  Plus, the counting and counting and counting and repetitive actions keep my brain perfectly engaged so I really don't have to think about anything else going on around me.  It's a great little bit of escapism.  
This is a scarf project that I got from the shop because the yarn was in a sale bin and I couldn't resist the colors.  It's called "Synchronicity Seafoam Scarf" but I think of it more like a surfing phoenix.  haaaaaaaaaa 
I've got about 10 more inches to finish this off, so we'll see if I can do it this week.  In the meantime, I'm happy to share these close-up shots of the gorgeous yarn.  There's more to be seen as part of "I heart Macro" so here's the button....
studio waterstone

Saturday, March 10, 2012

Project 52: A Dragon in the Garage

I haven't been taking enough pictures lately.  But, that being said, I saw this on the ground in my parking garage and couldn't wait to get some shots of it.  Do you see the dragon?
Week 9 - Dragon-in-the-garage
Yes, I know it's "just a spill" of something sticky and crazy on the floor, but it has this perfectly long neck and the fierce spiked head.  The neck and tail actually went all the way down the steps but I couldn't get a good shot of the whole thing. 
I played around in PS Elements again and went to my new favorite tool, the gradient map, and applied some yellow, orange and purple.  I love the way it came out because it reminds me of all the cool paper I made last weekend at Art & Soul.  I have lots of things to share from that wildly creative weekend, but was sooooo tired after three full days of getting my hand-crafted groove on.  I barely made it through the week...there were naps every single day!  haaaaaaaaaa  But, the energy is coming back and I'll be sharing more.  

Cheers to artful crap spilled on the ground!!!

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About Me

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Charleston, SC, United States
I'm a retiree/artist/student who makes things. It's a nice kind of lifestyle!

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