Monday, January 31, 2011

Week in Review- A little bit of everything

Hello friends!

Well here it is, the crazy blog where "everything else" goes! lol. I had some other pictures I wanted to share, but on their own they weren't much. I also figured before we got snow DUMPED on us I should post the pictures of the last crazy snow we got on the 25th!

Ok well I hope you already ate or drank before you read this, if not you will be starving and thirsty by blogs end ;)

Visiting with Ricky's parents.....

We were actually supposed to see Ricky's parents over New Year's Eve weekend, but they ended up getting snowed in, in Colorado. So we got to see them over the weekend of the 21st.

I was excited to give Malina(Ricky's mom) the bracelet I made for her. 

This bracelet style is similar to my "Flying Gobstopper" style bracelet I offered in my Etsy shop awhile back. Incase you missed it, here is a picture. My friend Holly ended up snatching it up for one of her birthday presents. It was pretty sweet 'cause you can either wear it as a bracelet or asymmetrical necklace :D The wing dings, rubber o's and soldered rings with crystal dangles are all "floaters".

 Sweet idea eh? Yes, I know, I should make another. I need to add that to my "to-do" list.
This bracelet was called "Green Horizon". 

We ended up going to a few of our favorite local places including, Tea Drops in the Westport area of Kansas City. Here you can see Ricky, his mom and his dad working on a puzzle they had on one of the tables. 


 Here is the bubble tea I got. It was coconut, rose and green tea. YUMMY! So delicious!
 The morning that they left we went out for breakfast at another "down home" cooking style restaurant. They sold these KILLER cinnamon rolls! Above you can see Ricky's mom with our cinnamon roll.


 Mmmmm I totally took this picture to tease you. Doesn't it look YUMMY? Well it totally was just as delicious as it looks!
While the Knable family was in town we stopped over at Costco and picked up some groceries. Rick and Malina thought the dogs needed a dog bed too :) As you can see Leeloo is happily laying on top of me on the couch. I had to convince Kayla she wanted to lay on the bed. She kind of did. I guess the side was as good as I was going to get. I guess they are kinda sketchy about the cedar smell of the bed. I think it smells fantastic, but what do I know? Apparently I'm not a spoiled dog. *rolls eyes*

HOLY SNOW, BATMAN....
Can you believe this snow we got?! This was taken the morning after it finally stopped. This was just last week.

 Here is the side of the house. Crazy huh?!
 The front from the street.
 Some WICKED icicles. I knocked them down after photographing them. They could seriously impale someone. The dogs were happy to crunch on them so at least someone enjoyed them ;)

Yummy snacks....

So Ricky and I have discovered the joys of stove popped popcorn. Not only is it delicious, but it's low calorie and way better for you than microwave popcorn. Did you know that not only do microwaves heat up your food, but the COMPLETELY change their chemical make up too? Ewww...
So to enjoy this tasty snack of awesome and win  you will need the following ingredients:
Bragg's Liquid Aminos, Bragg's nutritional yeast, Bragg's sprinkle, sea salt, cayenne pepper, organic popcorn, and vegetable oil, oh and olive oil(not pictured). 

So here's the secret to awesome popcorn. We read this somewhere on the net, but since I can't remember where I will just have to tell you here.

So first you set your stove to 7 heat. For one serving of pop corn you need 2tbs popcorn and 2tbs oil. Don't freak out, you only get half of the oil in your popcorn. The other half of the oil kicks it on the lid and pan bottom ;) 

Ok so you heat your stove to 7 and put the oil in the pan with 1 kernel of popcorn. When that kernel pops you remove the pan from heat, add the rest of the kernels, cover the top with a lid and vent one side of it and shake back and forth across the stove burner until there are only 1 to 2 seconds inbetween popcorn pops. This will help you judge when the popcorn is done cooking. 

 Next you will need large bowls. What is the crappiest thing about getting popcorn out besides the fact that it tastes like styrofoam, the seasoning not being on ALL of it. So divide your freshly popped pop corn into 2 bowls. Do the next steps in both bowls.  Add a squeeze of Bragg's liquid aminos around the rim of the bowl, next a dash of sea salt, a few dashes of nutritional yeast, sprinkle, cayenne(if you like it hot, if not, omit), and a teeny mist of olive oil.
 Combine both bowls together and scrape the empty bowl with a rubber scraper to make sure you get all of your seasonings :D Enjoy! You will be totally addicted, promise. This recipe is only like 156 calories and 9 grams of fat(from the oil). 

Gluten free goodness....

This was my breakfast the other day! HOLY CRAP, was it good! Ricky breaded the potatoes with gluten free bread crumbs. They were corn based so they were super crusty! Yes, that IS a good thing! The rest is eggs with broccoli, onions, and feta! I love that my hubby cooks me delicious things to eat :D

Incase you missed it on Etsy....

"Double Love" Watermelon adjustable ring.
Love Daisy "Aster"  adjustable ring.

 "Hugs and Kisses" mixed-media earrings.



"Love You" mixed-media necklace.

Collaboration!...

Awhile back I asked a few people if they wanted to collaborate after the first of the year. One of the lovely people was Amy Freeland of Copper Diem! Here you can see the complete blog post and reveal!
I made the lampwork beads and she designed the necklace. We are going to be offering it up on Etsy and donating to a charity. I believe it will be going to My Mom Pattie, but I need to double check with Amy. You all should totally check out the shop! It is run by the very talented, Marsha Neal. She dedicated the shop to her mother and they have some amazing pieces to offer! Also be sure to check out Marsha's work! She makes GORGEOUS clay pieces among lots of other lovely things!

What to expect this week....

I have some SUPER sweet stuff in the kiln today! I can't wait to see how everything turned out! :D

I took some pictures for my Etsy listings for the week. I tried to take them outside, but the sun wasn't cooperating with me so I had to shoot them inside. I got some KILLER photos! So be on the look out for some new stuff.

I just got the proof for the "Jaw Breaker" hollow tutorial from The Flow magazine! It looks SOOOO AMAZING! I can't wait for you all to see it. They informed me that it may get in this month's magazine, but if this issue is too full it will go in the next. I am crossing my fingers that it gets in the most recent issue. I will totally keep you all posted!
Here is the bead in the tutorial incase you missed hearing about it. I LOVE making these style hollow beads. I just plain old LOVE working with cane glass period. You can make so many awesome things!

Well that wraps it up for now, but I'll see you soon!

Much love,

Genea

Thursday, January 27, 2011

Behind the design- Tri-Flower Trumpet and buttons

Hello friends!

Do you ever have so much going on that you get over loaded and get absolutely NOTHING done? I had one of those days. I was up late working and woke up early knowing I had to attend to an important call. Before drifting off into sleep I had some ideas for that new 500 rings series too :D So how does that relate to my post? Well I knew I needed to write a few more blogs, and I was putting off my other bagillion million tasks, so I said f*it and decided to post about my newest bead and how it came into being :D

The background story...

Ok so I don't have the original bead so I will have to start by telling you how the "Tri-flower Trumpet" came about. I have been doing some work with my friend Evan( Yes, yes, I know. Evan needs a website. Be sure to pester him about it on his fb page ;) OK so... Evan and I are doing some light tests on Messy glass. Our test had to be a bead in a solid color that was photographed in: sunlight, incandescent, and fluorescent lighting. 

So Evan being the photographer was trying to help me come up with a shape that would demonstrate the color of the glass in thinner amounts and thicker amounts, while being visually appealing. At first he described a shape to me that when he was explaining it I went over to my jewelry box and pulled out my swirl earrings made by Steve Rhoades of Bokamo Designs.   

I handed them to Evan and said "You mean like this?" He was like "Yeah, actually." I explained to him that Steve already made them and that they wouldn't be very stable made from soft glass. These beads were going to be made purely for testing purposes. So we kept thinking about shapes.

I had talked with Kathy about making some hearts. This is where we use our imagination(ok so the part I wanted to insert is at 1 min and 30 seconds, but this is the best I could find) since I don't have a bead to show you ;) So I made a heart(to show thick spot) with raked down wings(to show thin spots) and put a twist in the middle. It was cool, but Evan and I still weren't completely satisfied. 

So then Evan says to me"Can you make a cone with 3 discs on it." I say "Yeah". So after creating our test bead I immediately thought to myself how can I make this design more complex? Filligrana's OF COURSE, and more colors!
Ta da! Here they are! The very first trumpets :D So the bead on the right was the first one. My favorite colors, of course ;) I actually meant to use a lighter filligrana on the very front flower, but goofed and grabbed the same rod twice. Still pretty f*ing sweet, if you ask me! The bead on the left made it's way to Mary Harding, my bead soup partner :) I can't wait to see what she makes!
 Here is the back view of the beads. You know generally when you create a new design you think of ways to tweak it after you are done. As you can see on the right the first bead doesn't have the petals raked towards the center. Does that make anything wrong with it? Nope! It just means it's unique :) 
On the bead on the left you can see that there are 6 petals instead of 5 and that the petals have been raked towards the center. I thought it just pulled the design together a bit more. Now I was actually shooting for 5 petals, but when I noticed that I had more room I added another. 

Now people have all different ways of trying to make things even. Some like to start in the center crease, then go to the opposite side of the bead, crease and then divide up those sections. For me, I always botch that stuff so I just crease and eyeball about how big I want the petal to be then crease. I guess I just get lucky judging the negative space ;) I think it comes with practice ;)
So speaking of design, I thought you might like to hear about my trials for the clasp bead I made for Mary as well. I did a few different things with each button. Starting on the very left I tried my spacer on the mandrel, added a blog of glass, flattened and built my button face around that way. Then I raked the layers inward. Yikes! You can see it didn't quite work out. 
The next button I made a spacer bead and put it in the kiln, then made the off mandrel flower and stuck it to the back. Didn't quite work.
The next flower I did off mandrel and then made a loop with 2 flat ends sticking out and heated and mashed it into the back for the shank. It worked out pretty good, but the front of the flower petals kinda wobbled around when I creased them.
Now the last button is the one I ended up using. This bead I made in the normal way I make buttons. I made a spacer bead first, then put a large blob for the button face, heated and made it flat and built around it. As you can see it worked out the best out of all of them. I have been flattening the backs of the spacers so they sit more flat on the skin instead of sticking out if they are round on the bottom. I think they feel more comfortable.

 Here you can see the backs. You can't really tell on the second flower from the left that it was off mandrel. That large orange spot in the middle was where I bonded the off mandrel part and the spacer bead. 

In the 3rd from the left you can see the skinny mandrel I bent into a loop with 2 ends and heated into the back of the flower. I added glass to each side where the metal flat parts stuck out. If you click onthe image you can see what I am talking about a little better. They really need some program that lets you doodle pictures and attach them when you are chatting or typing!

The last button you can see where I pushed the back flat.

Well I hope you enjoyed reading about how the designs came about!

Happy Creating!

Much love,

Genea




Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Soup sent to my Bead Soup Partner, Mary Harding

Hello friends!

Well today I hit the ground running. Does that ever happen to you? I feel like if I don't do my tasks every day the world leaves me behind! Yikes! So much to blog about! So how about the fun stuff??? :D Since Mary has already received her bead soup from me I can reveal some of the shots I took :) Wanna see what she got? Ok so if you checked out the flickr photo pool you will notice that I crammed these photos into 2 shots. Why? Well I am one of those people that doesn't have a paid account so I needed to save image space :(

Here is the whole collection. Sorry about the lighting. This is what happens when there is no sunlight for photos ;) As you can see I sent a lovely sampling of stuff and things :D I sent: some leather cord, nylon cord, Hilltribe silver findings and beads, some nifty rubber o's and eights(My ELEMENTS) , aluminum jump rings, and a SUPER set of my lampwork beads called "Carnival Peel". I named this set because the shapes remind me of a carnival and the colors remind me of fruit peels, that and it sounds hip and trendy together ;)

Here is a closer view of the lampwork beads. From left to right: glass headpins on copper wire, discs, spiraly and glittery spacers, wing dings, vortex flower, tri-flower trumpet, and a daisy button clasp.

Here was the start to her envelope. I snapped a pic when I just had her daisy and name drawn. Don't want to give away the addresses to our secret hide outs ;)

Here you can see the findings bit a little better. The colors are much more brilliant than they appear. Must be the plastic bags ;)

Here is a 4block of the tri-flower trumpet. I just LOVE this new style bead. I will blog about the inspiration for it's creation in another post, so stay tuned for that :D

Since I didn't have 4 shots of the Vortex Flower you get to see 3 separate pictures.  Here is the back side.

The front. Here you can see the glittery orange on the outside and the glittery yellow 4 colors from the outside. If I wouldn't have told you, you probably wouldn't have known. The orange color looks like shimmery gold fish scales and the yellow looks like glittery pineapple flesh. SO cool :D

Here's the side shot. Again you can really see the glitter on the outer edge! I'm so glad it showed up so well :)

Well thanks for stopping by to see Mary's goodies!

See you soon!

Much love,

Genea


Monday, January 17, 2011

Week in Review- Happenings in the Genea Beads studio

Hello friends!

So I wondered about doing a blog like this once a week to re-cap everything that's happened. This is where I would tell you about things I didn't get into an earlier week post or new things that have been listed if you missed the posts on my Genea Beads Facebook page.

Enjoying some gift cards.....

Ricky and I went out enjoying more of our gift cards from his parents this weekend. We stopped over at our local Starbucks to get some yummy coffee :D
I took a picture of the sign. If you may not have heard our beloved Starbucks siren is getting a make over. Starbucks re-did their logo and simplified her. 
 Here I caught Ricky enjoying a sip of his tasty drink :D


It turns out we had not been to Starbucks in a quite awhile since they entirely re-vamped the inside. It looks really classy. On the wood panel wall is a display of Casi Cielo, which is AMAZING, I might add! It's "in season" at the moment. Since it has notes of lemon and cocoa I thought it might be pretty amazing to pair it up with my very favorite Green & Blacks Organic hot cocoa!
Here is my recipe: 3c filtered water, 3Tbs Starbucks Casi Cielo coffee, 4tsp Green & Blacks Organic hot cocoa, splash of milk. Probably the BEST cafe mocha I have EVER had! :D 


Love and loss.....
This past week on January 6th one of my best friends, Elizabeth Estes-Steed left this world at the age of 32. Our friends came together to celebrate her life. What a tragedy to lose someone so young :( My heart goes out to our friends, her family, her husband and children. To celebrate her life my friends and I have been adding whatever pictures we have of her to our facebook pages. Here is one of my favorite pictures of us. It's one of those self-taken photos in a car that are extreme close ups ;)
This is a photo of a photo so it's not the best quality, but I didn't have a scanner.
Here is a picture of us at a local rave from a few years back. Beth is on the far left in the green zip-up, then me, my sister, Nina and our friend Alexis.

My dear friend, you will be missed.

Bead Soup by Lori Anderson...
I have had the pleasure of attending this current addition of bead soup by Lori Anderson of Pretty Things.
My partner is the very talented and sweet, Mary Harding!  She makes the most beautiful glass and clay pieces! I can't wait to get some of her pieces in the exchange! Here is a link to her website so you can see more of her pieces. OMG she has such lovely pieces it would take the rest of this blog to post links to ALL of them! Be sure to snoop around her page and check out her work!

New to Etsy....
So if you are just making it to the page as you read this you may have missed some items already. I have been offering medium sized Vortex Flowers that have been sneaking out of the shop. I have another one to offer,but need to head to the studio today to work on Mary's bead soup pieces. 

I did finally get a chance to list the Vortex Flower Necklace and earrings! There are also some spacers to check out as well.



Current work....
I have so much stuff lying around it's retarded! I have loads of things to be photographed and to be listed. I have also been working on some beads for the Beadwork Spring Stringing 2011 issue! Lorelei submitted a few pieces with my beads, so you can expect to see those in the shop when the magazine hits the shelf.

Here is a sneak peek of some of the beads and findings!
 Spotty spacers in earthy tones.
 A spotty coffee cup.

Spotty dotty glass headpins on copper wire.


One of my "Gravity Bubble" hollows.

Collaborative projects.....
I was excited to be working on another project with my friend, Evan Youngblood! So yell at Evan since the only link I have for his is his facebook page that says NOTHING about what he does, his talent or any other information!  Together Evan and I will  be working on color testing for Creation is Messy. I have been lucky enough to pass of the photography to the pro!

I also have the pleasure of working with Amy Freeland of Green Bead on Etsy and Copper Diem on Blogger. I am excited to see what she creates with the beads I sent. Unfortunately I didn't photograph the beads before sending so we will have to nicely ask Amy to snap a photo for us :) She makes some lovely pieces! Go on over to her shop and see what lovey items she has for Valentine's day!

Well I must be off! It's time to eat some breakfast and head down to the studio!

See you soon!

Much love,

Genea

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Happy Anniversary!

Hello friends!

 So I finally get to show you what I made for Ricky! It was the thing I was REALLY excited about when I made it, but couldn't post here or on FB so I wouldn't ruin the surprise!

Ok so I will explain what each piece is so you can really appreciate the piece.  I used one of those old frames I found at mom's house forever ago and upcycled it into this piece. I soldered scrabble letters of Ricky and my initials "R" and "G". In the middle hangs a polka dotted heart of our two favorite colors together. His is baby blue and mine is lime green. It's a little hard to see in the photo, but if you click on it it will make it's actual size in another window.  Hanging from the heart is a soldered charm I made at my very first soldered charm class. The soldering was God awful so I re-soldered it and added a lobster claw to the top so that you can clip the charm on either side to show your favorite picture. The photo on the left was one of Ricky's favorite pictures of us from our engagement pictures. On the right is a picture of Ricky and me that I loved because it was one of the very first pictures we took together just before we started dating.

This January 7th, we celebrated our 5th wedding anniversary! We got married in Fort Collins, Colorado at the Vineyard church. We were married by his mom and dad since they are both pastors. It was very special to us to have them both be part of the ceremony :) If you would believe it, it was actually 70 degrees that day!
Here is one of the photos of us. Unfortunately we didn't get all of the rolls of film developed, but of the ones we did develop this was one of our favs. This is a photo of a photo since I didn't have a scanner.
My mom made the dress out of a type of rough silk with little white pearls sewn to it. I am wearing a lampwork necklace I made especially for the wedding :D

This isn't the most amazing photo of the necklace, but you kind of get the idea. The lobster clasp actually clipped to where you see the cluster of pearls, crystals and lampwork bead dangle. I had to coil it to get it to get the necklace to fit into a squarish picture.


 Here is where I get to  share the fun things Ricky and I have got to do on and around our anniversary!

The day of our anniversary our friend and best man, Lucas invited Ricky and me out to eat at our favorite Vietnamese restaurant in down town KC!
Here is a shot of the front door. Sung Son is a Vietnamese Bistro in the West Port area of Kansas City.
 
What is a good blog without tempting looking food porn? Here were some of the smackrels I got from the bistro buffet(moving clockwise). So when I say buffet this is not like the crappy Chinese food ones. Everything is very fresh and delicious! On my plate I have a spring roll, curry chicken, ginger chicken, shrimp pad thai, my VERY favorite Vietnamese meal(bun thit nuong) a grilled pork "bowl", I forget what the other thing was and a Vietnamese egg roll, way better than the Chinese kind ;)
Their buffet also included their "noodle bowls" as well. They have 12 different soups from which to choose. I got the spicy beef bowl. I just LOVE all of the fresh herbs they use in Vietnamese cooking! My other favorites are Thai, and Japanese(sushi) :D I may quite possibly have been Asian in a former life. I swear it could eat Asian food all day every day!
Here I made Lucas and Ricky smile with their meals instead of pictures of them eating them. Ever notice it's kind of gross to see photos of people actually in the act of eating? You generally get really goofy looking shots of them in the middle of chewing or something!  lol
 
Here you can see Ricky with his nummies :)

Afterward we walked to a local t-shirt shop where they carry artists screen printed t's. I thought this sign was SOOO funny :D This is my type of humor. I like really obscure things and sarcasm :D

Yesterday we received our gift from my friend Jan! It was SUPER exciting to get a yummy Olive Garden gift card from her in the mail! We ate lots of yummy things, but we were so hungry I forgot to take pictures of everything!
I looked for some coupons on-line before we went out and found one for a free appetizer! We ordered the sampler appetizer with the:stuffed mushrooms, fried ravioli, and the cheese sticks.

 I ordered the lasagne rollata al forno! It is lasagne noodles stuffed with: ricotta, mozzarella, asiago, parmesan and romano cheese. Topped with mozzarella and seasoned breadcrumbs, baked in five cheese marinara. OMG, is all I have to say! It was SOOOOOO delicious!

Ricky got the gluten free pasta with meat sauce. For desert we shared a little cup of their Picatta Dolcini with Amaretto and Tiramisu! YUM!

Today in the mail we just received some gift cards from Ricky's parents! We got a gas card to shell(wow! They must have known we were just about out of gas), a card to Starbucks(how did they know I JUST ran out of coffee?!) and a card to Outback Steak house! I wish I could say we were going out tonight, but Ricky is fasting today and has to work at 6pm. 

We will do our celebrating tomorrow after he goes to his interview at this amazing gym in Overland Park, KS called Lifetime Fitness. 
I KNOW he is going to ROCK this interview! We are planning on them telling him he has the job after the interview :D He has already done the pre-lim interview and is doing one of their hands-on interviews. They gave him 3 case studies and he had to make a work out for each. They will choose one of them and then he will run one of their trainers through the work out as his interview! I am SOOOO excited for him! Please be sending your most very positive vibes and prayers to us tomorrow!

See you soon!

Much love,

Genea

P.S. I forgot to tell you that the other love of my life's anniversary just came up as well! On January 3rd I celebrated my 7 years of lampworking! :D