Thursday, September 30, 2010

Fun Filled Weekend

I have new kinetic pieces to list, and will do so as soon as the sun pops out for me to capture pretty photographs.

...thought I'd show you what I've been up to this past weekend (aside from my give-away) and those of you who are awaiting your pressies, they are finished as of this morning :-)

Oktoberfest in zee neighborhood, we did our part and made a huge vat of mac-n-cheese, loaded with real milk, butter, minced onion...

I taught hubby (who is an amazing cook, which I am not) the challenging nuances of making a real cheese sauce)

We tried to stick to Grannie Annie's old recipe as best we could (definitely not on the South Beach diet)

Soon, it was time to celebrate! :D (very early shin dig, 5-8) Afterwards we invited neighbors over to sit out on our back deck for a final fun time before Fall really kicks in. I did not get to smoke my cigar this year :-(

Monday I saw my ENT Dr. and was overjoyed that my brain scan was clean. It's just Meniere's!!! I had a lot of anticipatory anxiety. Yes I realize how much I'm downplaying the ugliness of this disease at this very moment, but I can't lay down every time I get dizzy...and I'm quickly learning to accept that this is how it's going to be, deafness in left ear, tinnitus, dizzy spells, nausea and times of exhaustion. When it's not present I will live large! :-)
I made some bread after dusting off our pretty ancient bread machine. I think it looks like a character from a sci fi movie

Finished, and topless

I dug in and it was so wonderful! Just as I sliced the top off my daughter Angelica walked in from work to enjoy a slice too :-)
If you would like this recipe for your machine let me know I'll post it. It's herb bread, and it all starts with sauteed onions in butter, oh man did my house smell good!

Wednesday I carpooled with my wonderful smithing buddy and good friend Jodi to our ongoing class in Alexandria. My hair is growing- I'm documenting it over the year in  pics in the torch area.  (...and no I never look away from a piece I'm soldering in real life!)

...and my work station at the end of the day on looks awful, but I have some pretty new pieces to list soon. Oh, and when my area gets filled up as shown, I simply move to a tree stump or huge anvil to hammer :D

Next blog update will have new pieces for my shop - for you! :-)

Monday, September 27, 2010

HEART - Battle Of Evermore

was driving and heard Heart on the radio, brought back wonderful memories of hearing their albums when I was a me some Heart doing Led Zeppelin!

Sunday, September 19, 2010

700th Etsy Sale ~Turquoise Ring Give Away/Stay Tuned for vid drawing tomorrow :-)


Give Away Contest Rules Below:


700th Etsy Sale Give Away
Oh ~this Beautiful Turquoise Ring
I want you to win!

1. Add a link and a comment on your own blog about this Give Away,
& leave me a comment here so I know you did so. If you don’t have a blog, leave it on your friends blog and add the link to your comment below.

2. Post a Facebook comment on your FB page regarding this Give Away,
and leave me a comment here for me.

3. Become a fan of AutumnLeavesJewelry on Facebook,
and leave a comment for me here. I am on FB under my actual name and later today there will be an official AutumnLeavesJewelry FB page for you to follow!

4. Become a follower of this blog, and
leave me a comment here as well about this give away, if you are already a follower please comment anyway about this give away.

5. Subscribe to my YouTube channel and leave a comment at
CarolynArtist1 about this give-away.


After each of the 5 times you have a chance to enter, comment below where you entered so I can add your name up to 5 times for the drawing!

Here’s how this works. There are 5 entries possible per person to win this ring; I’m going to pull a name (from my comments ONLY on this blog) . I’ll video the drawing of the winner! The odds are higher the more times your printed and folded name shows up in my little bowl. (remember, comment about this give-away in the 5 various places and mention each one in a separate comment on this blog)

After the winner’s name is drawn I have a special surprise for everyone who has entered, so, please, give it a try! :-)

Entries will be accepted up until 8PM EST on Friday, September 24

The winner will be announced Saturday, September 25th.
pssssssssst don't feel pressure to do all 5 entries, it just ups your odds for  the drawing, this is going to be fun for all of us :-)

Friday, September 17, 2010

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Just Listed

my Sitting Bull Cuff Bracelet in Sterling Silver

Hello freinds...I'm writing to you from my cozy perch on my bed. Taking a whole day off to see if the new diet of no caffeine and very low salt diet helps with my Meneire's. I may slow down my Etsy listings soon.  This will mean more time for reading, resting, staying healthy and all of this to enjoy family more!

My MRI is this Saturday and after that I'll let you know how much slower I plan to go with my larger pieces, or how the shop will go...

I hope everyone is making the best of today!

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Sitting Bull had a lot to say

and I chose this tame quote for this garden infused chunky silver bracelet/cuff.

Front of cuff

Back of cuff

Every piece is soldered (no prefab jump rings) the bracelet is easy to put and and take off by yourself. It's super comfy, though thick sterling silver, it has a very soft feel.
My makers mark and .925 are on the back (as you can see) along with the rest of Sitting Bull's quote.
Sitting Bull was a Dakota leader and if you follow my blog I have a love of the indigenous people from this part of the world, there's a strong connection through my grandmother who was born and grew up on the Santee Sioux Reservation (but that's such a small snippet of her amazing life) ...she really is my muse in so many ways. (love you and miss you Grandma)

Reminder that I have these to sell in my shop as well

Hinged Hoops
they are really super light on, but made with nice gauged Sterling silver,  and  they swing! :-)

Busy week for me coming up! not too much news on the personal front. Just creating pretty pieces for you, the ongoing studio classes start back up in Alexandria. And it's beginning to feel a lot like Fall!!!

What's it like where you are?

Saturday, September 11, 2010

Meniere's Disease

This artist refuses to give in. I won't I won't I won't.

My left ear is doing it hardest to take over so many simple things I do not take for granted. I've seen forums, blogs, read up on the aftermath of a Labyrinthectomy (yes I consider having this done when I get a bout of Meniere's).

It's been a few years since I last had my hearing in my left ear tested. I'm ready to go back to the doc's and get a work up to rule out any other physical cause. (if you have Meniere's maybe you can relate to what I'm ranting about)

In my mid 30s I opted to swim laps during lunch with some co-workers. (indoor pool) After a few hours the water and noise in my left ear couldn't be shaken out. Several days later, and much tinnitus to boot, (and mentioning this to my family and friends at work) decided to go get this checked out. Surely there was liquid trapped in my inner ear, and most certainly it could be drained? (I hoped) To my surprise the nurse did a check of my hearing and told me I had a 50% hearing loss, she seemed more alarmed than I. The test was done in an open room, with headphones and later I would come to understand a sort of crude gesture for actual hearing testing. (Bless her for trying) She (and the doc) did send me to an ENT specialist. I went to several and each said the same thing. I have all the symptoms of Meniere's.

Looking back through my life at various traumas I ponder the beginning of this hostile disease.

Was it from a fall?
A fall, I well remember the negotiations that went on between myself and 2 other young girls (standing atop a new slide) over who would take the actual metal slide down and who would get each of the outer poles to slide down. Clearly, I was not the boss and given orders for a pole. I recall the pole didn't hold and I fell. The slide was faulty and not well built, it came apart. Did I see dirt? I saw the hard dirt ground as I hit, or is this an image from hearing about the accident which produced an after-memory? I do recall that I was not in charge of my destiny. I was very young. I was knocked unconscious. Did I wake in the car on the way to the emergency room? That's all a blur. Were there brain scans back then? Was I watched for the next crucial hours to make sure there were no symptoms of any menacing head trauma? What seemed to come of it was one lucky little girl who fell onto the dirt, was knocked out and came to. Lucky girl!

Early Ear Infection?
There I lay at the end of my bed rolled in a ball crying, but not really crying, just grunting out some noise in attempts to dull the pain. It felt like an ice pick going in and out of my ear. Which ear? I have no idea. I suffered through. Was there a form of amoxicillin on the 60's? I must have been given something to help with the infection until it passed. (how many sleepless nights we had with my very young daughter during her frequent ear infections...I always knew when one was about to hit as she would pull at her ear while playing.)

Age 16, living in a very old building of sorts, away...for school. My ears began to constantly itch and the feeling went so deep I would jam my fingers in and scratch (savage girl!) Along with the actual scratching using my fingers I developed this sort of snort back throat scratch thing which further made me sound like an ape. Ooga ooga, it's a temporary fix...and I have never been able to actually quell the tickle(I still do it, you never need to see this!). I saw an ancient doctor back then. In Baltimore. He put these skinny rod looking things in through my nose and ears (the ends held some sort of cloth or cotton pad with a solution that smelled like hospitals. He give me some sort of medication which did nothing to help, so I chucked it. He wanted to use one of the prong tools to go from nose into throat, or was it throat to nose? This mapping was far too invasive and close to my brain for this teen and I said "no" enough. End of seeing the ancient ENT doc.

Who knows when it started and how it started and why it is. The fact is it hit again and last night I was spinning as I turned my head in bed, and finally had to put my book down for the night. I spun this morning rising up from the bed to the floor. These spells are more frequent and I'm angry. What irks me is how out of the blue these attacks occur. (Yes I do realize I could be much worse off with other health issues) but this is my big rant about my left ear. I've hinted at this disease in my blog and now decided to document the events leading up to the onset about 10 years ago to today.

The hearing in my left ear is just about shot to hell, it comes and goes and most of the time the ear is filled with a rushing sound, as if listening to a sea shell at the beach. Other times there's an empty fullness. Sometimes a distinct whistle. Maybe someone from Whoville  is trapped in my ear? If so, Horton, please phone home.

When the dizziness hits it's a matter of holding on (literally) to something stable and riding out the spells. Breathe in breathe out slowly and hope for my nausea to calm. I'm at sea.

I'm a metal smith; this does not gel with Menieres, but then what does?

Rant over.

It's September 11 and I'm thinking about this day and the senseless loss of lives. I'm also thinking about tolerance and the unfairness of those who are innocently suffering in war torn areas of this big world.

I have removed a copywrited photo depicting our beloved Twin Towers
this photo was not taken by me and had no idea I couldn't share it
it's a lovely photogrpah

Thursday, September 9, 2010

little flower vase and ring could i resist making this piece?

Hello, it's been a very busy long fun day in the studio. I did break down and make iced coffee in my daughters favorite mug. I rocked a vintage apron, had my soldering ears on and wore my mask for the fumes. (oh and btw I ordered 2 more pair of ears from an Etsy shop) I love spending my money from fellow artists as opposed to...MASS production made in...yada yada-ville

Here's the latest for my AutumnLeavesHome shop
I've yet to name it, surely she deserves a name.
If I can keep my sales up in my AutumnLeavesJewelry shop I can continue to make more Art pieces like this...oh and I have so many  in mind (can you artists relate???)

and with rings

all parts are made by me, even the tube, I just couldn't put a pre-made one on.
My makers mark and .925 are stamped on the back. She sits perfectly flat and as you can see, well she's a lovely work of functioning art.

Turquoise Post Babies will be listed soon...

as will these

It was a turquoise filled post making day!

This artist will take tomorrow off (so she says)

We received wonderful feedback from the white knitted dress sold from LuxeCoop, so far the shop has done very well.

I'm all caught up on my orders from my weekend sale. The crickets are chirping, windows have been open all day allowing the really nice air to flow through this old house.

Hope everyone is having a great day!

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Thank You Sweet Customers

and Friends!

AutumnLeavesJewelry experienced a lovely sale weekend, and here's to everyone enjoying a fun long weekend! Ours was filled with amazing weather! (low humidity)

Yellow school buses will alter my routes a bit, it'll be sweet to see the kids out again. Reminder for all of us to slow down and stop for those buses!

Over the weekend I was able to weed the front. Yesterday I planted mums and (oh I knew I'd forget the name of the other plant...) another colorful group. The latter has soft lambs ears type leaves and boingy flowers. (perennials) I chose the colors of our beloved DC Football team, The Redskins. Our team needs all the help it can get!!!

We also hosted a fun bbq for family and pulled out the karaoke machine. Having hubby's family over made me realize how precious our connections are to each other. (My nieces and nephews  are growing so fast...) And I missed my father and the rest of my family who all live out West. (Dad moved to San Diego a couple of months ago) My Aunt Jill will be in DC for a meeting soon which will give me a chance to visit with her for a meal :-)

Today I'll be packaging orders to mail out (thank you thank you again!!!)

This is Bert, Johnny's pop, he's 85 years young, he's recently retired as a lawyer in DC. He grew up in Brooklyn, NY and one can still detect the accent in his voice. We got him singing some Sinatra songs. He didn't realize his granddaughter, Cadence, was taping him, I hope you enjoy.


Saturday, September 4, 2010

50% off Everything in my Etsy Shop through Tuesday!

Hello beautiful people!!! It's a super nice day out, blue sky with white puffy clouds, we have windows open and hubby is preparing food for a family bbq. (I feel a karaoke night coming on, watch out neighbors, or should I apologize for the noise in advance?)

A note about my ongoing sale:

All of my larger pieces are also 50% off in my Etsy shop :-)
I will reimburse your 50% via Paypal after order is complete through my Etsy shop.
No code needed!

Some of you lovely people have already grabbed some goodies, I was so pleased to see the Dakota Cross Necklace go to a great home! Here are samples of a few more. (and yes even my smaller everyday items are half off!)

She's a small sized spinner, but she's beautifully made, and solid 14k rose gold. She would be sweet to wear around your neck on your favorite chain!

All Petite and Tomboy Petite Spinners (ready to ship) are half off, this is a super deal!
There are severeal to choose from!

Friday, September 3, 2010

Labor Day Half Off Sale on Every Item Ready to Ship

Let's have some fun...every single item will be listed at the regular price, I will reimburse you via paypal when the order is complete.

My Made To Order Items remain at FULL price until Tuesday. (Scrappy approves!!!)

I need to add more goodies to my shop, so, here's a chance to celebrate Labor Day, have some iced tea and add to your collection of AutumnLeavesJewelry.

Thursday, September 2, 2010

More Goodies will be listed in my AutumnLeavesJewelry Etsy Shop later...

I was a busy gal today, up at 3 blogging and later getting these photos fresh off the bench from later in the day...These are going to be a staple in my studio. Aren't they so round and inviting? They are Sleeping Beauty Turquoise, 8mm and beautifully set. Each pair will vary slightly but will match. (this sweet pair will be listed soon)

I also wanted to...and did finish another type of my Unquiet Ring with an ee cummings line
i carry your heart
There are metal beads inside the ring dome to make noise! (not for Ninja beginners, must be stealth Ninja to wear this) Or, if you aren't a Ninja it's just a gorgeous ring.
More of these to come.
This is a size 6 3/4 to 7

It was oxidized by egg, and worked out fine. The oxidation process took 2 eggs and about 3-4 hours, and in between I reheated the eggs 3 times at 30 seconds in the microwave

Yes my ring is in this tiny little Rubbermaid container!

Oh Unquiet Ringy where arrrrrrrrrrrre you???


...after some digging I found her!
Every little bit we can individually do to be kinder to this fragile earth is important, imho

Rock on!

This is the prettiest part of my day, I must be honest and let you know I had to calm myself and hide away for a while. I seem to be losing sleep and my racing thoughts and sadness area colliding. I've mentioned these things before to you...I had a fantastic couple of weeks and feel it sort of crumbling in little parts of my jagged days.
meds (would a diabetic give up insulin shots, would we not re-set a broken leg or fix a flooded levee?), good diet, sleep, water, hugs, meditation and talk therapy help immensely.

Insomnia and Exhaustion and Craving Color

Nights are getting shorter and I'm beginning to feel like I need to start adding color (stones) to my pieces again. My butane for my torch can not get her fast enough. Soon...soon, Care - soon...

In the mean time I've been busy with other busy-work things. Getting gift boxes stamped and Thank You cards ready.

My knitting hands are at it and last night I began a pair of mittens using DPNs (double pointed needles) I would love to have a pic here, because the color is luscious!)

Yesterday I was able to finish this and add it to my shop
Autumn's Petite Spinner Ring Size 8.25

Though the actual pic I took was this:

These were also added to my Etsy shop:
(they really swing and move with you as you wear them, love them)

a little girl from our neighborhood came over to my front yard and asked me why I was taking pictures of jewelry inside of flowers. I tried to get she and her little sister to notice the butterflies all over our butterfly bush (so I could keep snapping shots of my new earrings) but she was more interested in this odd mix of metal over flower. So, I explained the sun and the shine of the silver and the background and macro lens, and before long she was looking at the butterflies on the butterfly bush and tuning me out. Her little sister, who can walk very well now, was picking up these small white rocks from my garden, she would get 1 or 2 in her tiny fist and go for a 3rd and drop the others, she kept at it till her mother told her we don't need those white rocks honey, put them back. I guess kids are attracted to what is at eye level to them. It was a welcome diversion to see the girls and their mom and chat a bit.

In other news:

I've opened up the gates to taking all custom orders (including spinner ring orders) again.
Hopefully I'll have some new chunkier and funkier ones out soon.

That's it from me,  later today I may add a photo of my mittens I'm knitting. I've been up since around 3, and will try to get more zzzz's.
Edit::: Fresh photo of new mittens, doesn't it look so inviting to you knitters out there?