Must. STOP.

January 29, 2008 at 11:22 pm (Alice in Chains, Beading, Crazy Shit)

buying. beads.

For almost an entire year, I didn’t bead very much nor did I buy much because I had a hard time paying the mortgage, much less buying beads. Now, I’m buying beads. Although someone may look in my beading bags and see a lot of beads, a good beader knows, you have to have a lot of beads. You have to have cabochons and big beads and little beads and micro beads and bugle beads.

You have to be able to spread them out and look at their colors and their shine and their texture, and you have to thumb through your beading books and magazines and take an idea here and idea there and mix it all up and create something else. Sometimes you have to make something that someone else designed just so you can take one part of it to make something better than you made it before.

And you really need a lot of beads to do that. (That’s my story and I’m stickin’ to it!)

Last night I was laying in bed and a design idea just came to me. Out of nowhere. Then, as I was taking a short blogging break to indulge in a hot fudge sundae, another design idea came to me about my Alice in Chains jacket.  Now, the jacket has evolved a great deal since the original idea and basic Alice in Chains sun logo. It now has a different center, a different background, and different embellishments.

Okay, so, I’m done buying beads, for now. “Now” is subject to change without notice. Thank you.

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Superstitious

January 27, 2008 at 11:12 pm (Cats, Crazy Shit, T-Bird, The House)

I went to T-Bird’s today and right now I’m washing clothes. My goal is to have my washing out of the way before tomorrow. I’m trying to like hell not to go to T-Bird’s tomorrow, even though she’s getting a new tattoo. I want to see the tat and I’d like to see how he did with it. She’s also taking a picture of Smokey with her so he can let her know whether or not he can do a tattoo for me, which is Smokey’s face and the names of my deceased cats around him in a circle.

I’m, yes, somewhat superstitious. January 28th of last year, I washed clothes and took those clothes to T-Bird’s to dry them while I helped her with the kids. I came home to my house on fire and my life turned upside down. Pardon me if I prefer to stay home and put my house in better order.

I came through it stronger and wiser.  The last thing to return, oddly, has been my empathic abilities. Those taps on the shoulder are just now returning. Not that they haven’t been around, because I can definitely see by how people react to me at times that they’re still there. Perhaps I switched to “innate” versus “conscious.”

Perhaps it took speaking to the spirits again for them to answer. I entrusted the care of my cats to my grandmother, knowing I’ll see them all again someday and it was time to let go.  I did that after watching an episode of John Edward. It gave me peace.

T-Bird and I have talked numerous times about trying to find John Edward tickets close by. I’ve looked on T-master a few times and the shows were always too far away or sold out. Well, not this time. I bought two tickets to the Washington, D.C. show on June 20th.  You should have seen her face when I told her. I got the cheapest tickets and we’ll just be happy to be there.

And, I wanted to thank all of you for your prayers, thoughts, monetary contributions, and phone calls. Words could never express how grateful I am to have been shown the best humanity has to offer, no matter how it made its way to my doorstep.

And because I don’t have time to properly post all of the pictures I have backed up, I’ll just post the Valentine’s Tree…

cats-nate-041.jpg

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Making Plans

January 25, 2008 at 10:02 pm (Beading, Black Stone Cherry, My Travels, Nate, The House)

It was 7* here this morning. Time to start planning a vacation with the Natester. I’ve had my eye on the Southwest for a while now. Nate has a love of things alien and I have a love of things beaded so Arizona is the place for us.

The original trip entailed flying to Las Vegas and making the four + hour trip to Flagstaff with a stop over at Hoover Dam, spending a few days exploring (Grand Canyon, Sedona, Glendale), and then making a lengthy trip to Roswell, NM and visiting Carlsbad Caverns.

Following a short discussion about recently obtained information, Nate and I decided to forgo Roswell and Carlsbad to spend more time in Sedona and the GC. (It appears as though Sedona is known for its little green men and vortexes, not to mention, the oldest bead shop in America.) Glendale is home to the Bead Museum, although I promised Nate that more time would be spent having fun rather than bead shopping.

The greatest thing about planning this trip is that my GM lived in Flagstaff for eight years, so she has the skinny on all the cool things to do so we don’t get caught up in all the tourist traps. I told her I was certain that Nate would bring home a little green man on a leash if I allowed it. A-Rod has also spent time in Arizona and mentioned that Nate and I take the “short” mule ride down the canyon.

Since we’re going (hopefully), the third week in March, I figure we might be able to snag a mule or two. However, neither of us were overjoyed at spending seven hours on a mule, no matter how beautiful it is.  We decided a moderate hike would better suit our hyperactiveness. We’ll either do the 12 mile rim hike or the more strenous Bright Angel Trail to the first resthouse (1.5 miles down, feels like 150 back). The rim hike might be better since we can stop and grab a shuttle bus every mile or so if we so desire.

I’m also planning a trip to the great state of Wisconsin the first week of June! That’s right, the teaming metropolis of Milwaukee and all the beads I can roll around in. For you non-beaders, Milwaukee is home to the annual Bead and Button Show and I’ve signed up for a three day class on jewelry design and if I’m lucky, I may catch a glimpse of Sherry Serafini.

If you take a look at her website, especially under “neck pieces” and “media and awards,” yes, you will see why Sherry is my beading goddess. Her work is so inspirational and just drop dead beautiful! I love the Swarovski rivolis. I’ll be having some of those before long. If you look at her website under “neck pieces,” the rivolis are the crystal centerpieces for  #20 and #21. She is truly a beading guru and she just released a new book called “The Art of Bead Embroidery” which will soon be gracing my shelf (and will undoubtedly end up dog-eared.)

I also just purchased some antique beads, which are classified as 18s, 20s, and 22s. The 22s are said to be small enough to pass through the hole of an 11, which is what I use most of the time. I picked up an antique purse from E-bay for the beads only and I have another antique purse here which is beyond repair. I’ll photograph the designs and see what I can do with it all. Additionally, I found an Ott-Lite on sale at Joann.com for $50 off!!!!  The small versions of those suckers go for $80 or more.

And Black Stone Cherry will be releasing a new CD come late Spring/early Summer, so look for me at a couple (5 or 10) of their shows and the word through the grapevine is that my host family will be making a sojourn through Texas sometime this year, so look for me also in the Houston area, time and date to be announced. I have been informed by the Natester that he would like a tour of NASA while we’re there. I think that can be arranged. Maybe it will inspire him.

Speaking of Nate and inspiration… I will be setting up his Math-a-Thon webpage for donations hopefully by Sunday night. He’ll be collecting donations for St. Judes by doing 250 math problems. You will be able to make online donations if you desire. I told Nate that I would not make a set donation amount, but rather I donate by the number of problems worked correctly. This inspires him to work harder toward his goal.

I also have numerous goals for the house this year, including, wow, painting the outside, putting in a small counter beside of the stove, enclosing the porch, buying and installing insulated blackout drapes for my bedroom and the living room, and, you know, putting up more pictures and buying a curio cabinet.

My cousin and I are also conspiring, I mean, collaborating on a beaded/painted portrait. I guess I should get moving on some of that. I’m taking a couple of ideas I saw in a beading magazine that doesn’t pay me to advertise for them and I’m combining those with her rich talents to come up with something that’s probably been done before but we’ve never done it so it’s unique and new to us. I’m working on a long overdue necklace for Hoss’s lady and don’t forget the Alice in Chains jacket, which gets more interesting and complex everyday.

My timeframe for completion of the jacket and a bead embroidered bracelet that survived Ye Olde Fire is before June 1st.

Wish me luck.

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Heath Ledger… Dead????

January 22, 2008 at 9:13 pm (Crazy Shit)

I have to say, that was particularly stunning news. Had it said, say, Keith Richards, no shock to be had. But Heath Ledger?????

Of course, I find most news reports break my heart. Like the lady in WI who tried to drown her two week old twins in the bathtub, apparently distraught over an older child being killed (murdered?). Now, one of her babies is dead. A baby. A defenseless little baby. It’s almost beyond comprehension.

I really dislike reading the news these days.

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Smashed UP!

January 21, 2008 at 7:19 pm (Crazy Shit)

Drunk, that is. After a particularly crappy day at work, in which I got my ass chewed at the end of it, I told Candyman, “I’m tyin’ one on tonight. I’m gettin’ drunk.” Period.

I’ve drank but not been exceptionally toasted or drunk-drunk, for over a year. I knew if I did all the shit I’ve shoved down inside of me would come out and play. Luckily, T-Bird can handle me when I get like that.

So, I had six Kaluha’s and cream, three Kaluha’s and Bailey’s, and four shots of tequila. The last seven drinks were at a local strip club. I used to be on good terms with the bartender, however, he got married and moved away. I still drank and checked out the hot chick with the nice ass and little nipples. And I got really drunk.

T-Bird, who doesn’t drink anymore, was kind enough to drive me around while I wailed and cried about the injustices of life and my feelings on just about everything from Jeff to Steve to Nate to her to the fire and beyond. She’s a good listener. She now knows how much I loved Jeff and Steve and how shitty it is that I can’t tolerate either of them now and how much it bothers me that some things don’t bother me, but I feel like they should.

Trust me, if something was bothering me on Saturday night, she would have heard about it.

I went to bed at 4, I think. I got up at 10 and was still bumping into the door frames and my back hurt and oh yeah, my head hurt. I was immensely glad to see that my bottle of “Holy shit, how much did I drink last night?” medication was sitting on my desk. I went back to bed. I woke up at 3 and decided that wasn’t long enough so I slept another hour.

T-Bird saw fit to remind me of how I argued with her and Bob about how much I drank. She said, “Girl, if you put three shots of Kaluha in a glass, that means three drinks, not one.” I knew that! I’m fucking bartender, I was just hoping she didn’t notice that little trick.

So, just keep that in mind if you’re ever out partying with Nanner… when I say, “I’m tyin’ one on,” yeah, I mean it.

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Who Did It?

January 14, 2008 at 9:32 pm (Crazy Shit)

I came home from the movies on Saturday to find a package on my porch. It had an Internet sales company as the return address, one which I did not recognize. The package was fairly thin, wasn’t ticking, wasn’t heavier than it should be, didn’t have suspicious wiring sticking out of duct tape, and didn’t smell particularly foul, so I opened it.

There was Viggo inside. A Viggo Mortensen calendar, that is. So, I’ve eliminated everyone but ya’ll. Cough it up! Who put a big smile on my face Saturday?????

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Beading With Jerry Cantrell

January 13, 2008 at 12:53 pm (Alice in Chains, Beading, Crazy Shit, Music, My Travels)

 This blog post brought to you by Serra (for the kickass public access show title) and Alice in Chains.

Okay, Jerry Cantrell, for those who don’t know, is one of the founding members, principal lyricist, guitarist, and sometime vocalist for Seattle grunge band, Alice in Chains. He also is a solo artist.

jerry-cantrell.jpg

This is Jerry. (This pic was lifted from a source which did not give me permission to use it. )

Jerry was one of the reasons for my trip to New Orleans in October of 2007. I met him at the House of Blues and got an autograph. Jerry’s music and lyrics inspire me, which is why I’m working on beaded artwork representing the Alice in Chains logo, which is a ginormous sun. It’s very intricate and I figure if I can do this, I can pretty much accomplish anything, beaded, that is.

So, the dream. Nate and I were at a hotel and I knew I was there for a beading show, or something of that nature. I had a lot of new beading stuff. I also knew that Jerry was staying in the same hotel. I caught glimpses of him in the dream. Then, in true Nanner fashion, I forgot what room I was in. Yeah, I had four of those card thingies you use to get into your rooms now, but totally forgot what room I was in.

When I went to the checkout counter to see what room I was in, Jerry was behind the desk, playing with the telephones and the printer, feet propped up, looking rather bored. He came out from behind the counter and starts talking to me. No, I could not hear anything he said to me, nor anything I said to him, nothing. I didn’t even get a feeling as to what we were discussing.

He did have my Big Blue Book of Beading and walked away from me. Almost telepathically, I said, “Excuse me, that’s my book!” He shut the book with one hand (its a big book, too!) and turned around. When he handed me the book back, there was all kinds of new beading stuff on top of it. I took it with extreme gratitude. I went up the stairs, after eschewing the crazy peeps around the elevator, and found my room.

Nate was once again with me and I found my beading stuff again, outside of the wrong room, and took them to my room. So, that was the dream.

Most of the symbolism in the dream is about moving up, moving on, finding new ways to express myself, and the fear of wanting things to move along, but just not getting there fast enough because I always set unrealistice time frames for myself.

I think Jerry was symbolic of someone who has overcome (or at least works at overcoming) their own personal demons, someone who has lost a great deal in their life, regardless of status or wealth, and continues to create and attempts to move forward with their life and rise above. It helps that it was someone which I admire that slammed the book on the past and made a very strong statement about “out with the old, in the with the new.”

I’ve been working very hard at putting my life back in order and channeling my continued pain into creative outlets, even if it isn’t blogging. I’ve been in flux between the painful reminder of what I lost in the fire, not anything material mind you, but my precious felines, and a resurgence of my faith in an afterlife where I’ll be reunited with them, prayers to my family and friends who have crossed over to watch over them and my recently departed cousin, who crossed on the 28th (what is it with the 28th!), unrealistic fears that I’ll lose everything again, mixed with an unshakeable belief that this is my year and the time for tears is over.

I came out of 2007 stronger and with much more backbone than you can imagine, even though I no longer insist that the weight of the world be on my shoulders. (Hat tip to Metallica for that lyric.)

I can honestly say, this probably won’t be the year for blogging, but I will stop by as often as I can to see all of you and keep you informed of my progress on my other projects, with photos, of course.

And thanks to everyone who weighed in on whether to keep my “Christmas” tree or not (here and on MySpace). I kept it and it is now a Valentine’s Tree. I’ll post pics soon.

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Watching…

January 8, 2008 at 9:29 am (General, The House)

My weight.

The mail for more beads.

Sorting…

The stuff in my house.

Cleaning…

My house.

My car.

Fighting…

With Jeff.

Keeping…

My Christmas tree up and converting it to a holiday tree.

Having…

Good dreams about beading and Jerry Cantrell. (Yes, all in one dream. Does it get much better than that?)

Enjoying…

The fine weather (for one day.)

My first day off without Nate, without family, without traveling, for three (four?) weeks.

Life is good.  Oh yeah, and LSU won, which means OSU lost. Oh, happy day!

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