Sunday, April 22, 2012

Lookee!  It's my "not even quarterly" blog post!

It's not that there's nothing going on - it's just nice, mostly pleasant life stuff - like that we're watching birdies through our transom window as they've built a nest, laid eggs and are now feeding the hungry lot -

Or that I've been knitting, spinning and very occasionally making glass beads -

What I can't believe is that I didn't blog about our once-in-a-lifetime trip to China during Chinese New Year in January - wow!  On the other hand, I seriously think Facebook has usurped a lot of blogs.  I did post a nice album there.  Wanna see pix - here are a few and here is a linky to the album! 

Saturday, December 24, 2011

Wrapping up 2011

For me, it's been a good year.  I hope it's been good - or at least bearable - for you!  Now, I'm not saying it was perfect, but I'd be an absolute fool to complain about much of anything.  I have a wonderful husband and a happy critter-filled home, I found a new job that I love, I made new friends and visited a lot of great places (Colorado, Napa, Pensacola, Atlanta, and NYC among them).  I foresee 2012 being another year of discovery and change (which can be very good).  In the near term future, Rich and I are doing something really exciting - we're going to CHINA for a week in January!  You'd better believe we'll come back with some great stories and pictures!

I thought I'd include some pix of 2011 to help wrap up the year -

We lost two dogs in less than a year (R.I.P. the two Buddys) and added a new one.  Meet Mr. Wally

Glass played a part in my life but I REALLY enjoyed working with fiber this year.  I spun up a storm on my two new wheels - an Infinity (see post below) and a Schacht Ladybug (I am SO fortunate)!

 Laceweight Alpaca mix
 Fluffy, fluffy Alpaca in BIG skeins
BFL sock weight

We saw a little more of the world - some of it I'd seen before but will always go back.

Got to make a trip "home" to Colorado, to Pueblo, where I grew up and got to show Rich some of southern Colorado's hidden gems like Cripple Creek and the Cheyenne Mountain Zoo, where we fed giraffes.
Celebrated my in-law's 50th(!) wedding anniversary in NYC.  Went to Dean and Deluca - one of my favorite places evah!  The cheese selection is to die for and we took home a tiny bit of one of the most expensive in the store.
Napa, CA.  Got to spend 5 days with my sis and her husband, winery hopping.  It was wonderful!
How can I leave out (no pun intended) these beautiful grape leaves.  So nice....

Here's wishing you the best of the holiday season!



Sunday, September 4, 2011

Is this blog dead?

Well, it's not dead - just realllly neglected!

You know how it is - you have every intention of writing and then life gets in the way. Ok, so where did we leave off? Last I wrote, I was a self-employed web developer with little time on my hands. NOW, I'm a fully employed Director of Digital Marketing at a local publisher and I still have little time on my hands. Wow, has life changed! I love my job, my commute isn't bad and things are going well!

I got that beautiful spinning wheel and took it apart and finished it. Here ya go - it's called an Infinity wheel. The maker is a very helpful and talented woman, who along with her retired machinist dad made up about 8 wheels. I'm not sure yet, but that may be all they make as their lives have gotten busy and "dad" has had some health things. I wish them all the best though and hope their wheel-making venture continues as I love mine. I may post my review in my next post.

What else? Still making beads. Had a great time at The Bead Biz's "Beadapalooza" event last weekend. Lots of single beadies and sets will be made into jewelry, this time by someone else.

Next weekend is a visit to Colorado - can't wait! I haven't been home in a long time!

Saturday, March 26, 2011

Busy is Good

You know how when it rains, it pours? That's me this week. I had car troubles, client meetings, new websites to do, show prep and so much more. On the car front - nothing major, just corroded battery terminals and new brakes.

I have a show coming up - the Montevallo Arts Council puts on a one-day show every year. I was honored to be accepted and am working on inventory. In addition, I have requests for jewelry, doll eyes and more. The only problem is finding the time to do it all!

Spring has sprung in Birmingham and everywhere I go, I'm seeing lovely Wisteria (which is literally a weed here, it takes over everything), Dogwoods are blooming and the grass is greening. I'll have to see if I can get some pix.

My sweet hubby brightened my day "just because" this week with these lovely Star Gazer lillies. Aren't they wonderful?

Friday, March 18, 2011

Sometimes the News Gets to Me

Good Morning!

I've said this before but I really should just stop reading, watching, etc. the news but there's no escaping it. Even reading through my friends' FB posts and emails yields a trove of the not-so-pleasant sometimes. We all go on and live our lives though, wish the best for those facing adversity and hope that tomorrow brings better tidings.

St. Pat's Dinner was awesome as evidenced by the steaming bowl o'beef, cabbage and taters shown here. The Guinness was a nice addition as well.

I'm prepping for the arrival of my new spinning wheel. On Ravelry, I found a program run by a lovely Alpaca farm. "Spin a Bag, Get a Bag" means that the farm sends two bags of Alpaca fleece. One for me and one for them. I received a beautiful caramel-colored fleece for me and a white fleece to spin up into lofty two ply for them. The white fleece was pretty dusty so I washed up some and it's been drying in the sun for the last day or two. Nice fluffy cloud-like fiber - I can't wait to spin it!

While my life goes on, my thoughts are with the people of Libya, Japan and friends who recently received bad news.

Thursday, March 17, 2011

St. Patrick's Day - As Good a Day as Any to Start Blogging Again

Yep - it's been what, like almost a year since I posted last? Maybe not quite but sometimes there just isn't that much to say or you know what? I think social media and blogs are sort of at odds with one another. I put a lot of what I'm doing up on FaceBook and totally forget to chronicle it here.

Anyhow - Happy St. Pat's Day. To me, it's an excuse to break out the corned beast and cabbage and potatoes. I've chosen to put my hands on my ears and say, "La, la, la..." to the actual history of the holiday. I'm not really "celebrating" anyway.

So, what is up with me? I am still working from home at the moment. I have created about a dozen websites since January - which is awesome. It gives me a sense of satisfaction to create a tool to help other artists, businesses, and non-profits to promote their ventures.

I'm torching - not as often as I need to be but I have some upcoming shows so I HAVE to.

I've had this undeniable itch to do something with the piles of yarn and fiber I've amassed around me. I recently sold my Ashford Kiwi spinning wheel to a beginning spinner to finance the purchase of a similarly priced but more versatile wheel. I'll be talking about that more once it arrives. It's an American, woman-made wheel - I'm very excited about that.

Enough rambling. My thoughts go out the Japanese people. I've been glued to NHK and CNN for a week now. This is so much bigger than all of us!

Thursday, May 13, 2010

Someone new? Yep, ME!

Ok, so months have gone by again but I DO have a little bit of an excuse (but not really). Other people manage to keep their blogs up to date despite the busiest of circumstances.

Life has just been motoring along and I've just been trying to keep up with it. The biggest news I have is that Rich and I GOT MARRIED. So, while of course, I'm still the same person, my new name is Janelle Zorko Schultz (or it will be after I do all those paperwork things).

We had a lovely and very small wedding in Pensacola, Florida on May 7th. Are you wondering why you weren't invited? Well, actually no one was! We chose to make it small (the person marrying us and his wife, plus two witnesses). You see, our family is scattered, there were cost concerns and the boat we were on only held so many people. We were married on Gulf Islands National Seashore in a short and sweet ceremony. I feel that life is short and sweet and so it was perfect!

In other news, I continue to make beads, create and update websites, garden (Rich and I put in a really nice one, pictures soon), experiment with fiber and tend to our ever-aging pet herd. Speaking of which, we lost one of them to kidney failure. So sad that kittehs and puppehs can't live as long as we do!

In Rememberance - Miss Mia Maria

Sunday, February 28, 2010

Weekends are for fun

My idea of a fun weekend may not mesh with your idea a fun weekend - but then again it might, if you're so busy during the week that staying in and making things makes you happy.

That's exactly what I did. I squeezed in some web and other work but when I wasn't doing that, I was MAKING STUFF and I love it! Saturday into today, it was Purim - a Jewish holiday I mentioned last year. Purim is traditionally a fun holiday that commemorates a time when the Jewish people living in Persia were saved from extermination. I won't go into it here but if you want to read more about it - here's a link to some info - Purim. I am not Jewish - but since Rich is, I'm learning and since I love baking, I made the customary "Hamantaschen" cookies again. This time I didn't have to send them clear across the country so that my guy could enjoy them.

Since I was on a "make it from scratch" streak, I decided to haul out my seldom-used Salton yogurt maker. Have you tried Greek yogurt? Rich and I have been buying the Chobani brand - and we love it. What we don't love is paying upwards of $2 per small container of the stuff. So I started reading up on it and interestingly, all it is, is regular yogurt with some of the whey strained out. So, as I said, I made some yogurt (pretty economical) and then I set it in some cheesecloth to strain out a lot of the whey. I mixed it with some fresh kiwi and honey - nummy!

What a nice weekend! Now, it would have been perfect if the US hockey team could have pulled out that last point, but hey, I didn't even know I was a hockey fan...until today!

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Getting Out There

Yesterday was a long day. I spent the morning preparing for the afternoon - which included an eye opening meeting with two lovely ladies at University of Alabama's Children's Hospital so that I could see the oncology and hematology clinics. I will be demoing at their Beads of Courage Hope and Cope event on April 25th. In case you're not familiar with Beads of Courage, you should check it out. Such a great cause. At the meeting and tour of the hospital, I learned just how important this program is to kids of all ages taking part in the program. The kids get a bead for various milestones in their treatment. Guess what? They need beads! Please check out the site to learn how to donate.

Then, later in the afternoon, I met with a gallery owner and her intake person. I was honored that they like my work and will be carrying it in their gallery. I have a few more of these somewhat nervewracking meetings this week as well. I need to get my work out there - well, for financial reasons, but also for the satisifaction and maybe a little validation that others like what I create when I'm in front of the torch. The gallery carrying my work is JenniferHarwellArt. You can click on the link to go to their page.

Here are a few items you can find in their gallery -

Thursday, February 18, 2010

So many things to blog about - and so little time...

More than a month has passed and time just gets away. I've been at the torch, out there marketing my work, planning my schedule and of course, continuing on the eternal search for a full time job. I love my life, my schedule, etc. but there's something to be said for the security of working for someone else and the mental stimulation that working with actual PEOPLE provides.

At times, my main conversations are with this guy -

And he just doesn't talk much!

It's ok though. All this solitude is giving me a chance to, well, everything. I'm designing today as a matter of fact and will return with some photos of the results.