Alas, Gardening Season is Over

So, its been a busy year — not that I blogged, but busy none the less.

I got a full-time job . . . in July!  That didn’t bode too well for the garden . . . horribly, actually.  After much soul searching, I cut the CSA season short.  I just couldn’t keep up.  It was painful — mostly for me, I think!  Everyone else seemed to take it with some amount of grace.

I also had booked a whole bunch of art shows . . . which also led to the shortening of the season.  I would like to report that we did well . . . but we didn’t.  Anywhere – but, Canton, IL.  That first time show ROCKED!  So that part of my life is also being re-evaluated.

I did not order new chicks this year.  It’s time to take a break from the twice a day going to the barn and worrying about the wild life and the weather and all that stuff.  There are on going discussions about tearing the barn down and building my own workshop.  But tonight that may have also been shelved.

I did submit some photos to a book . . . 1,000 beads – which will be out in April, 2014.  Everyone I know will be very sick of seeing me carrying around my copy!  I looked at Lampwork Etc (a forum that I belong to but rarely look at these days) and I can tell you that there are some really cool lampwork beads that are included in that book.  I am humbled to be included.

The family went to San Francisco for five days.  That was an adventure . . . . I would love to go back again someday.

I joined the electronic age — am typing on my brand new iPad Air with blue tooth keyboard.  I would hope that I can now take some pictures and get them posted to the blog more often!


So, stay tuned to see what’s next in the adventures of Twisted Chicken Beads, Etc.  


Thursday, January 17, 2013

Home today getting caught up on things!  I have added two new things to the online store and discovered that I can put a bigger picture with each item . . . except of course the one I can’t find the picture for!

If you aren’t following me on facebook you haven’t read that I have applied for the Marion Art Festival in May.  I will hear in February – so stay posted.  I’m very excited about it for a couple of reasons — it is out of my usual range of travel.  But — I use to live there and have some really good friends that I haven’t seen in a while who still live there . . . so it would be a great art fair and a great weekend!  What more could a gal ask for?!  I also has some jury quality photos taken of some of my new stuff . . . what do you think?



Bell Flower Earrings

Bell Flower Earrings







The earrings are $30 per pair — if you are interested contact me on facebook and you can let me know which pair you are interested in.

On the gardening side of my life . . . it’s still winter!  But yesterday I placed my seed order and I have a couple spots in the CSA still available (you must live in Peoria!)  Or through out the season I will have extra stuff that I would be happy to get to you . . .  I’m not planning on participating in Farmer’s Market tho I will probably stop by and see my friends.  The best part of market was the community — farmers and customers!  The new chickens have started laying and the second batch of 2012 chicks should start laying in March.  Contact me if you want to purchase eggs!

The big upheaval of the holidays was moving Sara into the sewing room (smaller bed room — she’s at college now, you know!) and Tyler into Sara’s old room and my crafts (let’s face it – I don’t sew!) into Tyler’s old room which is larger that what I had and downstairs.  The kid’s rooms are all put back together, but mine not so much . . . .So – today I’m going to work on that for a couple hours then bookwork for a couple hours then on to the pool to walk with another beader!

Life is good!

Saturday, December 29, 2012

Hey All —

It’s snowing a little here in Central Illinois!  Luckily, very little.  Before Christmas we had some rain that would have been major snow fall . . . . dodged that!

I have started adding pendants (photographed by the lovely Loni Wenzel at Yellow Lily Photography, check her out on Facebook) to my web site.  Sara will be taking some photos for me while she is home from school and there will be a bunch of posting soon!

one inch pendant

one inch pendant

large hole green bead pendant

large hole green bead pendant







And on the gardening scene — tyler did some tilling for me in the large hoop house right before Christmas.  I need to get some 10 food boards and the box building will begin.  There was a day when the temp inside the hoop house was 80 degrees.  Amazing what a little sun will do!  And I do have some spinach in cell packs waiting to be planted and some pea seeds left over from a couple years ago that I was going to stick in to see what happened.  Always think I wait too long in the spring to get those in . . . . always an experiment going on here!

Monday, September (really!) 19, 2011

Wow – August did just whiz by — even without me pushing it along!

Most of the outside garden stuff is done producing . . . now for the clean up process!  But in the hoop houses — there are peppers still blooming, and spinach and lettuce sprouting.  Now, if I could only get the lights to work correctly.

Another sign of fall — one morning, while sitting on the deck enjoying a quiet moment with my coffee/book I heard a strange noise coming from the barn . . . finally decided that it is one of three new roosters trying out their voices!  Imagine a teenage boy shouting with all their might and the strange cracking that would go along with that.  They are just beginning to crow – not consistantly, not the same one – not even every day.  So hopefully the hens will start laying in the not too distant future — eggs, anyone?

In the mean time – while it has been cooler I haven’t gotten to the torch as much as I would like to — I have new tools and some more coming soon.  Saturday I took a good portion of my inventory to the Galesburg Civic Art Center – I am the October Artist of the Month!


Monday, 08/15/2011

Well, that didn’t last long did it — it seems that gardening season just takes over everything — every good intention I have of keeping up with anything just goes right out of my head!  But things are slowing down — some!  I have fought the battle of the weeds, and again, have lost.  But there is always next year.  Next year’s list has already begun:

Buy more black plastic:  while I hate the black plastic in theory I love what it does to the weeds . . . for years I tried landscape fabric, but if it’s not weighted down properly (which I never got to) the weeds just come up underneath it.  Some of my plastic is on it’s second year and is doing quite well — inspite of being left outside all winter long.  So, the plan is to pull up the plastic and store it in a hoop house for the winter and move it around for next year.  The tomatoes did wonderfully planted in the plastic — next year I’m going to plant eggplant and squash on the plastic so I don’t loose them in the weeds!

Decide what to do about the first two hoop houses and ventilation — would love to add roll-up sides to them, but it’s about $1,000.  Not sure I want to invest in that . . . . not sure how much the alternatives will be, so — may just go along as we have been.

Negotiate with the spouse unit about moving some of the black raspberry plants around . . . . again with the plastic.  The plants on plastic are doing very well — whether that is a function of the plastic or more sunlight (mostly in the morning), I have no idea.  Not to mention that I could turn the current raspberry area into a larger asparagus patch that just requires mowing and mulching . . . . not to mention – MORE ASPARAGUS.  Thinking I won’t get too much flack on this one.

Not order so many seeds.  And pay better attention to what I’m ordering (coulda sworn those mountain magic tomatoes were cherries — alas, too large . . . but beautiful and plentiful!).


In the mean time — I have lit the torch a couple of times — yesterday’s are still in the kiln . . . and have two day’s worth at the sink ready to be cleaned.  I have printed out two art show applications . . . . in Iowa for September — think I’m going to go for it!

And have some more stuff photographed and put on etsy . . . . and in March when my phone contract is up I’m gonna get a touch screen and a square for the credit card thingie . . . . and – hmm, I’ve started looking for employment for the winter . . . when will I squeeze that in?


Tuesday, July 12, 2011

The green beans are still out there!  I have picked 45 pounds today for the Good Earth Food Alliance CSA! Ok — Sara helped pick 25 of those yesterday and bagged them all for me!  I LOVE when she comes out to the garden to help — once she quits whining about it she is good help and chatters on about what is going on with her and her world!

Annette and I were in Pekin yesterday for a fund raiser at Goodfellas — the food was great, the crowd was ok — and several ladies said that they would call about hosting a party!  Do you know that you don’t have to wait to find us out and about but can book a home party?!  We come to you, bring all our stuff, set up, sell, clean up and disappear — forgot —  you get 15% of the sales in free stuff!  And what could be better?  Your guests get to take everything with them right then, no waiting for the box to show up, see who got what, and try to get their what to them . . . . what a pain!  We are pain-free!  And you and your friends get first crack at new, exciting, one of a kind pieces of jewelry — for yourself or as a gift — no one will have anything like it!

So — back to the gardening — the weeds are killing me — and the garden really needs some rain!  Sam is doing a wonderful job of keeping the weeds out of the peppers this year, but the deer have mowed where he weeded the soy beans . . . luckily the plants are smart enough to know to bloom down farther on the stem so there will still be fruit!  And the stupid, ok, make that smart, coons are killing the chickens and me . . . can’t seem to trap them and I don’t know how to use the guns . . . . maybe I should learn so I can sit out there and wait — there were two in the barnyard when I went out to lock the birds up last night!