Monday, December 30, 2013

Grow Your Blog, 2014

This year I will be participating in the "GROW YOUR BLOG" event that is designed to bring more readers and followers to your blog. Our hostess is Vicki Boster whose blog is called 2 Bags Full.

This is the second year she has been organizing/co-ordinating this event. Those who took part last time all rave about how their readership increased as a result.

You can find out all the details on the official sign up page. The post is long but please make sure you read it all. You must leave a comment, with the requested information, on this post if you want to be included in this event.

Deadline to sign up is January 15th. Go here to register. No latecomers will be accepted, so don't delay.

To see a complete list of last years' participants, click here.

This sounds like an excellent (and free) way to boost your number of followers. My readership has remained the same for quite some time, no matter what I've tried to promote my blog. Hopefully, this event will get me over the hump. *smile*

Looking forward to checking out some new blogs and meeting new people on January 25th. See you then!

Saturday, December 28, 2013

Focusing on Life - Week 52

Saying Goodbye
Well, we are here at the end of our year long journey.
It is time to say goodbye.
This week, for one last time in 2013, I ask you to focus on how you would like to say farewell then capture it in a photo(s).

Focusing on Life, 2013...what an incredible journey it has been! I have thoroughly enjoyed the process, met some wonderful people and learned a bit about myself along the way. I want to thank Sally for all her efforts in organizing and implementing this year long challenge.

And while many good things have come out of this project for me, I am not sure if I will be participating in Focusing on Life, 2014. Best of luck to all those who will be continuing down this path and those who join in for the first time. Maybe I will see you there.

Edit: Since writing this post a few days ago, I did decide to sign up for Focus on Life, 2014. Not being able to get out and about very much or very well will limit the scope of my photos but I hope my exploration and execution of the prompts will be beneficial to all of us.

Friday, December 27, 2013

Let's De-Clutter in 2014

I don’t know about you but, over the years, I have accumulated so much stuff that all my drawers and closets and storage bins are over-flowing. It is time clear out some of the items that I’m no longer using or enjoying, haven’t seen for years, and are obsolete or broken. They are simply clogging up my life and causing me undue stress.

Every week, I will choose an area to work on. Then, I will post about what I’ve found that was lost and forgotten about. I’ll tell you what I’ve done with those things and how I decided whether to keep, toss or donate the items. Moral support through this process would be much appreciated.

So that it doesn’t seem too overwhelming, I’m going to stick to one small section to go through each week. Otherwise, it could get very discouraging, very quickly. That’s what has happened to me in the past when I tried to de-clutter and organize my place.

Let me know if you would like to join me in this year long de-cluttering project. I will post links to your blogs every week too. We can keep each other motivated. *smile* Somehow, tasks like this always go smoother and easier with a friend.

Saturday, December 21, 2013

Focusing on Life - Week 51

A look, a touch, a smile, a few words
or something that feels familiar.
A small act that brings us in,
lifts our spirits, and brings us together.

This week focus on wrapping yourself
in the warmth of togetherness.

Togetherness is the blessing of spending the holidays with friends and family. It is a gift that we often do not appreciate as much as we should. Take a moment to breathe in the joy of the season with those you love.

To see the 'togetherness' photos of the other participants, check out the links below...

Saturday, December 14, 2013

Focusing on Life - Week 50

Red is such a striking colour.
Pops of red grab your attention and
add interest to a photo.

This week, focus on your surroundings and keep
an eye out for pops of red.

At this time of year, both red and green deck our halls to herald in the holiday season. Even the dolls in my house have pulled out their Christmas outfits, and apparently while I was at work, were making gingerbread cookies in my kitchen. *smile*

I'm just glad they cleaned up the mess before I got home. To see more red, check out the links below...

Saturday, December 7, 2013

I Love Clay Blog Hop - Reveal Day

I Love Clay Blog Hop

I'll be honest...when I first opened my package from Lisa with the lovely polymer clay connector bead for this design challenge, I had NO idea what to create with it. 

The oval, highly textured connector is made by Heather Powers of HumbleBeads. It is dark turquoise (or teal?), with white and brown accents, and a matte finish. The detail on it is amazing!

It sat on my work table for weeks...looking at me. I'd keep picking it up, feeling it and trying to imagine it in a unique design.

And as the date for the blog hop was getting closer and closer, I started to panic! I still had no ideas, no inspiration, no clue what I would do. The final week was upon me and time was running out. What the heck am I going to do?

I pulled beads and components from every corner but nothing in my stash seemed to 'work' with it. Hold on a minute, I thought, maybe I'm going at this the wrong way. The connector is so elaborate and beautiful on it's own, why not try the minimalist approach?

I've started to play around with chain mail recently and have been incorporating it into some of my designs. So, why not? I pulled out the bronze rings that I've been using and my two pairs of pliers and got to work.

The modified mobius pattern of the chain and simple hand-made clasp let this fabulous connector bead shine as the prominent feature of this bracelet.

Sometimes less is more, and that seems to be exactly what this situation called for.

To see the clay creations of the other participants, check out the links below...

Your hostess:  Lisa Lodge, A Grateful Artist

Melissa Trudinger, Bead Recipes
Kathy Zeigler Lindemer, Bay Moon Design
Eleanor Burian Moore, The Charmed Life
Jo-Ann Woolverton, It's a Beadiful Creation
Chris Eisenberg, Wanderware
Carolyn Lawson, Carolyns Creations
Bonnie Coursolle, Jasper's Gems
Dolores Raml, Crafty D's Creations
Therese Frank, Therese's Treasures
Christine Stonefield, Sweet Girl Design
Carolyn Lawson, Carolyn's Creations
Mowse Doyle, Mowse Made This 
Janine Lucas, Esfera Travel Blog
Karin Grosset Grange, Ginkgo et Coquelicot
Kelli Nelson, Zenith Jade Creations
Ann Schroeder, Bead Love
Jasvanti Patel, Jewelry by Jasvanti
Candida Castleberry, Sugar Spun Beadworks
Robin Reed, Artistry HCBD
Katrina Taylor, I Wanna Go Out

Focusing on Life - Week 49

Add a Little Sparkle
As the light of day disappears earlier and earlier in the evenings, to keep things cheery we sometimes have to add our own dash of sparkle to brighten our inner glow.

The dancing flames of candles add sparkle to any space, brighten the darkest night. Candles will set a soothing atmosphere to meditate, to pray and to share quiet time with your Higher Power.

To see what sparkles for the other participants, check out the links below...