Friday, October 31, 2008

Happy Halloween!

Wishing all of you out there a safe, happy Halloween! Beware the ghosts and goblins :)

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Featured etsyBlogger: Jen of Baby Friendly Beads & Mama's Magic Studio

Every month, etsyBloggers features one of their members. The featured member for the month of October is Jen of Baby Friendly Beads and Mama's Magic Studio.

At Baby Friendly Beads, Jen features beautiful, functioning breastfeeding necklaces and bracelets. Here are some of the items that you can find in her shop:

At Mama's Magic Studio, Jen features fun, whimsical jewelry including "fraternal" earring sets. As Jen puts it, they're not identical, but they are definitely a pair! Here are some of the fun items you can find there:

For more information on Jen and her creations, please visit her blog at

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Hectic Times...

So, the last few weeks have had me reeling... Everything was going pretty well for us until October 9th. It started like a normal day. I headed off to work in the morning and received a call mid-morning that our family dog, Mosey, was in a bad way. We had known this was coming, and my family was prepared to let her go. I headed to my mom's house at around 11:00 to gather with my parents and siblings. Mosey passed away just after my dad arrived. She was such a great dog and had been with my family for fourteen years. I returned to work, saddened and depressed. My mom called me at around 3:00 to tell me that my aunt had given her a puppy. She was so worried that we would think she was some kind of terrible person for accepting a new puppy on the very day that we had lost Mosey. I told her she was crazy and that I would stop by after work to meet the new addition.

I spoke with my husband, who was finishing up his work day. It was about 3:45 and we agreed that I would visit my mom, pick up dinner on the way home, and wake him up when I arrived. I got off work at 4:00 and headed to Mom's house. I literally walked in the door, saw the new pup sleeping with my dad and heard my cell phone ring. The worst moment in my life to date came next.

My husband's boss was on the other end of the line, telling me that my husband, Tim, was trying to get in touch with me, that he sounded bad. Utterly confused, I asked if he was joking. He informed me that he was not, and that Tim was waiting for me at the old Drive-In on Hwy 212. Then he told me that it sounded like Tim had a stroke.

I can't even tell you how I made it to the Drive-In, or what happened shortly thereafter. I can tell you that I rushed Tim to the emergency room. After a horrible night, they diagnosed him with a stroke the next day. He went through a few days of tests at the local hospital before they released him to my care on Sunday afternoon. We followed up with a neurologist at the University of Chicago last week, who sent him for additional tests yesterday afternoon. We'll get those results when we return to Chicago next week.

I am extremely happy to report that Tim has made huge progress in his recovery. Initially, his motor skills, speech, right side, and vision were affected. As of today, he still suffers from terrible headaches and has some blurriness in one of his eyes, but he has otherwise made a full recovery. We feel extremely blessed and have found new appreciation for each other and the life that we are lucky enough to share.

Of course, things have been nuts lately. I've had a hard time coping, but I'm doing better. I'm trying to focus on the positive things: his recovery, our time together, the new-found appreciation we have. It's not easy, and I still have moments where I want to regress to a crying, screaming, angry person - questioning the why's and angry that our lives have been turned upside down again at a point where we were finally finding financialy security and stability. It'll take some time to get used to the way things are right now, but we're tough. We're Humans, after all...

Thursday, October 2, 2008

My 9 to 5 as an Inventory Control Specialist

So, my working hours aren't exactly 9 to 5, but the you get what I mean. I have this great title where I work - "Inventory Control Specialist". Sounds fancy, eh? Well, here's what all of that really means... I am responsible for the integrity and accuracy of the inventory for four chemical manufacturing plants and one corporate location in the states of Indiana, Ohio, Louisiana, and Maryland. I travel quite a bit to these locations in order to ensure that I am on top of of the issues that affect each of these plants.

I work for a chemical manufacturing company that produces chemicals used primarily in water treatment plants and catalyst manufacturing for gasoline. I deal a lot with chemical vendors, ensuring that our prices are correct and that those prices are correctly reflected in our Costs of Goods Sold. The software we use is a huge pain in the hiney. It was implemented poorly and so a lot of my job entails me playing clean up. Lots of accounting, lots of cost analysis, and lots of paperwork!

I really love my job and I'm currently going to school to complete my degree in Accounting with a focus on cost accounting - a big promotion is in store for me when I finish, so the next two years are going to crawl by, I'm sure! When I'm not traveling, I work in a small office at the site of our plant in Indiana. I think the biggest bonus for me is that I get to wear my super comfy jeans every day, ha!

Here's a picture from a training session in December 2007. That's me, second from the left!

Wednesday, October 1, 2008


Hi everyone! I made the decision this week to get serious about my blog. Ok, not "serious", but at least active once again. It's hard to blog when you're trying to focus on something in particular all of the time. The initial purpose of my blog was purely to promote my jewelry. Guess what? It's not so much fun, and not all that interesting to read about. So, while I may throw bits and pieces about my jewelry in the mix on occasion, I've decided to take this thing in a new directions. So, bear with me... hopefully this won't be too bumpy of a ride!

My first step in taking my blog in a new direction was to join the etsyBloggers Team. I just joined this week and already the team members are helping me to get into the swing of things. In fact, Jackie from A Keeper's Jackpot tagged me. What's that mean, you ask? Well, she was "tagged" by another blogger to basically respond to a fun question. In turn, she answered the question and tagged five others. One of those five was little ol' me! Now it's my turn to shed a little light on six secrets you might not have known before:

1. I'm a control freak. It's hard for me to let others help with projects, because I've become so self-sufficient in my 30 years on the planet. I don't like to rely on others because I'm afraid of being disappointed. I'm back in school now and working on group projects is like pulling teeth. But, I'm getting better... I think!

2. I hate to cook, love to bake. Cooking just doesn't do it for me - it's because I *need* to cook, I think - otherwise, my household would survive on grilled cheese and ramen noodle soup. I cook because I HAVE to. Baking is something I do for pleasure and everyone's happy with the end results - I mean, who doesn't love homemade sweets? Just ask my hips and the hips of my loved ones!

3. I prefer not to work for a large corporation because I don't want to work with alot of other women. Sexist? Perhaps, but I've found that once you get more than 2 women in the same office, all hell starts to break loose. That's not always the case, and I have had some positive experiences working with women - so please don't leave me nastygram comments about how attitudes like mine put the feminist movement back 50 years. But if you want to work with me, leave the catfights and gossip at home.

4. I hate crowds. This holds me back a lot. I don't mind crowds in open places like baseball parks or markets. A bar? No way! A club? Not getting me within 50 yards, I don't care how cool the place might be. If I have to go out to a place like that for a special event, I refuse to go alone - I won't even meet you there. I'll drive with you so that I'm not waiting in the parking lot for thirty minutes alone, waiting for you to show. Sorry.

5. I'm heartbroken that this season is the last season of E.R. on NBC. I've been faithfully watching the show (never missed a single episode) for what, 15 years now? My mom and sister are also E.R. addicts. I watched the relationship between Dr. Ross and Carol grow, the birth of Carol's twins, the deaths of Mark Green, Rocket Romano, Lucy Knight, Pratt, just to name a few. I feel connected to these characters and feel like I know them better than most of my present real-life friends. I don't mind the medical inaccuracies, I'm all about the story lines. My sister, mom and I are planning a party for the last episode - there will be many tears that night, I'm sure!

6. I can't swim. Mind you, I have lived nearly my entire life at the foot of Lake Michigan. Half of my family owns swimming pools. I'm not really sure why I was never taught or never learned. I'll go in a pool, but I'm the only adult that's clinging on to one of those pool noodles for dear life - it's quite an entertaining site to see, I'm sure.

Now it's my turn to tag five other bloggers, so here we go!

- Laurie from Laurie Beggin Glass Musings

- Mary Ann from Morning Sky Jewelry and Creations

- Eileen from Dorset Hill Beads

- Linda from Handmade By Linda

- Julie from Creative Mines

Now it's your turn to blog about six secrets about yourself! Happy Secret Sharing, ladies! Thanks again to Jackie for getting me off my duff and blogging again!

- Lisa