Thursday, January 29, 2009

When the cat's away...

...the mouse will play.

Monday, January 26, 2009

More Baubles

Here are some pictures of the latest jewelry I've made. I apologize for the poor picture quality--I need to learn how to photograph my jewelry so that it looks...nice, at least! So far I know all about the macro button, but I'm still figuring out lighting and flash problems. But in the meantime I'm just excited to show you what I've made. All of these pieces are for sale (unless otherwise noted) so if you see something you like, let me know and I'll send you more information!

Orange Blossom Necklace: deep orange rhinestones dangling from copper wire twisted into a branch design. Pure african copper bead strung on bronze wire for the chain.

Silver Garden Necklace: silver flower charms and beads twisted with silver plated German wire on a silver plated "bubble" chain.

Plum Tree Necklace: Amethyst and lavender colored Czech fire-polished beads with copper wire. Amethyst Czech beads are randomly mixed with pure african copper beads for the chain.

River Bed Necklace: Turquoise glass beads, dark brown wooden beads, and copper wire. A random mix of brown, amber, turquoise, and peridot seed beads for the chain. __________________________________________________________

Rose-Hip Necklace: garnet Swarovski crystal briolette wrapped in silver plated wire.

Branch Earrings: deep brown wooden beads on silver plated wire twisted into a branch design. Due to being handmade these earrings are similar but not exact matches. Stainless steel ear hooks.

Sweet Juniper Necklace: teal wooden beads in a twisted branch design with copper wire. Still awaiting a chain.
Robin's Nest Necklace: teal wooden beads rest in a copper wire nest. Still awaiting a chain.

Sundrop Earrings: pale yellow beads with golden flecks, strung on flexible gold wire.
14K gold ear hooks.
I'm still planning on opening an Etsy shop but I need a name! Two name ideas I'm considering are:
Ruby Willow--Geary suggested this name during a brainstorming session and it's just kind of stuck with me. I love willow trees and dark red is one of my favorite colors. I also like how the words just sound.
Bird on a Wire--I like little birds (as a design element--not as pets) and I'm primarily working with wire. I can imagine the cute logos I could come up with but I'm worried that this is too trendy. Also, I could name my etsy shop Bird on a Wire but my etsy address would have to be something different (such as that be confusing?
So...any thoughts? Opinions? Suggestions? I'm open to any and every idea. And I would also love to know if you like my latest jewelry pieces. Thanks, friends!


Jeana: There's that pool with all the water slides that you refused to go to when we lived here.

Noah: Yeah. Well, I would go to that water park now.

Jeana: Really? I thought you hated swimming.

Noah: I don't hate swimming. I hate sinking!

Friday, January 23, 2009

Hop on Pop

Last night Geary and Noah were reading One Fish Two Fish Red Fish Blue Fish...

Geary: I like Dr. Seuss.

Noah: Me, too. He has a wicked imagination!

Thursday, January 22, 2009


Yesterday Tobin and I went over to a friends house after dropping Noah off at school. Katy, our hostess, graciously provided coffee and fresh blueberry muffins. We sat chatting in the living room while our kids played on the floor and I was just thinking about how relaxed I was and how "at home" I felt when looked over at see what Toby was doing.

Apparently Toby was feeling "at home" as well. He had found the plate of blueberry muffins and taken one single bite out of each and every muffin. I guess the first bite really does taste the best!

Monday, January 19, 2009

Dessert Sunday

Yesterday we celebrated our first "Dessert Sunday." In an effort to get away from the idea that we need dessert every day we've decided to only have desserts on Sundays and special occassions. It worked out great! Rather than cut out all sweets indefinitely (and then binge on them later) we knew that Sunday was coming and had something to look forward to. We didn't overindulge because we knew we'd get the same chance next Sunday. As a bonus we didn't have to play the "how many bites do I have to take in order to get dessert" game with Noah. Dessert actually felt special!

For those curious folks, I made these Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Cookies. Geary took the leftovers to school with him this morning. Next Sunday I'm planning on making a plum cake with a recipe I found in a vintage cookbook. Yay!

Saturday, January 17, 2009

Truth Telling

Noah: Mom...I have to tell you something.

Jeana: Okay, go ahead.

Noah: Well, I was cleaning up my paints like you told me but I got red paint on my thumb when I closed the thing and I went to wash my hands but then I had a big problem.

Jeana: What happened?

Noah: I got red paint on the soap. But it was still on my hand. So I had to dry my hands but I got paint on one towel and two washcloths and maybe another towel.

Jeana (groaning): Okay, let me go see what I can do. Thank you for telling me.

Noah: I wanted to tell you because I wanted to get in trouble.

Jeana: You wanted to get in trouble?

Noah: Well, I wanted to get in a little trouble. I knew if I didn't tell you I would get in big trouble and I just wanted to be in a little trouble.

Thursday, January 15, 2009

Felt Playmats

This Christmas I really wanted to make as many gifts as I could. I decided to make felt playmats for my nieces who are really into Littlest Pet Shop and Polly Pocket toys.

My friend Alison had made a racetrack out of felt for her son so I was inspired to use the same playmat idea to make a little park where Polly and the Littlest Pets could play.

I sewed a zippered pocket for pet and Polly storage.

And I added ribbon handles... that when folded up it could be a handy-dandy carrying tote.

Perfect for taking to a friend's house!
I didn't use any pattern, just made it up as I went. The first one took many hours and I stitched and ripped out stitches many times. But once I figured it out the second one was whipped up in no time. If I could do it over again I would use regular cotton fabric for the outside instead of felt. But overall I'm pleased with how they turned out and I'm happy to say they were a huge hit with my nieces.

Tuesday, January 13, 2009


As promised, here a few pictures of the jewelry I've been making:

I'm having a great time creating with wire and beads and I'm really trying to get my pieces to reflect the beauty found in nature. Most of my materials have been "found objects" (i.e. jewelry found at antique stores that I've taken apart to rework) or materials that I had on hand from different projects (like the copper wire). I hope to keep that "green" aspect in my work in the future, treasure hunting in unlikely places in order to create something beautiful out of that which was previously discarded. What do you think? I would love your feedback!

Monday, January 12, 2009

Goals for 2009

We have some grand plans for 2009. Most of them revolve around me and I know we would all appreciate your prayers for blessing in these areas.

  • Expanding our family: Geary and I have been talking and praying and we're ready to add another little person to our family. We are specifically praying for a daughter, although we would be thrilled to have another son, too. Right now we're pursuing both pregnancy and adoption. If you've been reading this blog you know of my history with miscarriages. I absolutely don't want to experience another one, but I believe I'm being obedient to God by giving him control over my womb. We're also pursuing adoption through the foster care system. I'm sure at some point over the year we'll come to a crossroads where we'll need to go down one path or the other, but for now we're not closing any doors. Will you join us in praying for a healthy daughter?

  • Losing 100 pounds: This is such an area of frustration and shame for me. I'm still hesitant to even talk about it but I think that if I'm going to do this I need to be open about it. I'm embarrassed by my weight even though it's obviously there for the world the see. I'm probably not going to want to talk about this with everyone--only a select few, so I would really appreciate you letting me take the lead in conversations about my weight. Thank you. My plan is to eat no more than 1,500 calories per day, drink tons of water, and exercise at least 4 times each week. There are many more details than that but I just want to tell you the basics. To keep accountability I'm going to post my weight loss progress here each Wednesday.

  • Learning guitar: I've always wanted to learn an instrument and I have a deep desire to be able to worship God with music. I've asked a lady from church if she would help me and she said yes! I'm also hoping that my relationship with this woman can turn into a mentoring relationship. She is the type of woman I want to be when I grow up. Geary is also helping me in this area.

  • Selling jewelry: For Christmas I made a lot of necklaces and earrings to give away as gifts. The response was overwhelming and people have been encouraging me to sell my wares. I've decided to try making several pieces and see if they sell on and/or in some local shops here in Newberg. I'm not sure how it will go but I'm just going to put my stuff out there and see. As all my friends and family keep telling me, it can't hurt to try. I'll try to post some pictures of my jewelry in the next couple of days.
So that's it. There are some big deal things on the list! I don't want to think of these as New Years Resolutions, though. These are real goals that intend to accomplish. I know I won't succeed without a community supporting me, though, so that's why I'm asking for your prayers and why I'm planning to be as open as I can about each of these goals. If you're on my team, will you let me know in the comments section? Thank you. I appreciate each and every person who reads this blog.

Friday, January 09, 2009

Tap, Tap, this thing on?

Hi. So...(crickets chirping)'s been awhile! I took a two week blogging hiatus to get caught up on the post Christmas organizing. Still not sure where to put all the new toys the kids got but I'm okay on letting that slide for awhile since we'll need to change their room around anyway. Why you ask? Because Toby is this close to being able to climb out of his crib on his own. So I've been checking Craigslist for wooden bunkbeds.

Anyway, things are pretty much back to normal around here. We celebrated Epiphany by going to Value Village and getting new pants for everyone. I truly hope that becomes a family tradition that we do every year. Kind of like the day after Thanksgiving when everyone gets new socks.

We're also reading The Tale of Despereaux as a family. We only a have a few chapters to go and then we're going to see the movie. We highly recommend the book and it's great for reading aloud. We're probably going to read through The Chronicles of Narnia as family next but if anyone else has a good family reading recommendation I'd love to know about it.