Archive for August, 2010

Phoenix Society

Wednesday, August 25th, 2010

Please click on picture for total view

For the last couple of years, I have donated 5% of my total sales to the Phoenix Society as they are doing much needed work for burn survivors. I’ve also toyed with how to do a continual fundraiser through my business and I’m thrilled to announce that I will be premiering a line of awareness jewelry featuring a sterling charm with the Phoenix on it. As we speak the charms are being made so I do not have a charm to show you yet but I was so excited that we (myself and the Phoenix Society) are at this point I had to share!

The Phoenix Society is an important part of our life. For those who know me only online do not know my husband is a burn survivor of 54 years. Until we were in our late 30s or early 40s we had never met another burn survivor.

One day on the noon news he saw a news piece about a burn survivor meeting in Grand Rapids – not far from where we lived at the time. He went to a meeting and met a wonderful woman named Amy Acton. At the time, Amy was head nurse of the Burn Unit at Blodgett Hospital in Grand Rapids and she had started this support group. Through this group Don learned of the Phoenix Society and we were fortunate enough to get some funding through the Phoenix Society to attend the World Burn Congress which is sponsored by the Phoenix Society in Detroit that year.

What a conference! We met a wonderful group of survivors and learned that the Phoenix Society was started by a gentleman named Alan Breslau after he was burned in a plane crash in 1963. After working for many years with burn survivors he started The Phoenix Society – named after the bird that rises from the ashes, renewed and better than before! Alan retired in 1998 and the Board of Directors named Amy Acton as their new chairperson.

We have not been able to attend WBC every year but have attended many over the years. And we are going to World Burn Congress again this year — this time it is in Galveston, TX. Every year, it is held in a different part of the country to make it easier for a variety of folks to attend who may not be able to travel long distances due to physical and monetary issues.

What goes around, comes around

Monday, August 9th, 2010

There is no picture today — I’m just too danged tired to look for one in my files.

I just got home from doing a show at Tallman House in Janesville and I’m whipped.

First it rained for 2 and 1/2 hours during setup then when it quit the wind came up — and gusted. A couple of times I held onto my little EZ UP debating what else the weather was going to do today. And then I heard breaking glass — checked the lady next to me with stained glass, not her. It was a couple of booths over – a watercolorist who lost the glass on a painting when the wind picked the picture right up off the easel and slammed it onto the ground.

Next time I peeked out I saw a lady who had just a backyard canopy that had  flipped over – didn’t appear to damage anything at her booth. And then I heard some woman yelling behind me. Her canopy had apparently cartwheeled end for end. After checking I began to smile — this was a women who berated her husband and daughters loudly and often while they tried to help her  set up a canopy for the second time (first time apparently in the backyard while the sun was shining). I’m guessing it was a while ago and no one made notes ’cause they took it apart and put it back together 3 times. The neighbor beside me quietly offered to help her and noticed that it was put together wrong. When pointing it out to her, the inexperienced woman informed everyone around her she had ‘good problem solving skills – it said so on her first grade report card!”.  The rest of us all rolled our eyes and snickered. It’s been a while since that woman had been in first grade, let me tell you!!

Today was a good lesson in being prepared. 2 and 1/2 hours of rain followed by wind gusts of 30mph or so followed by a  rise in the humidity till we sweat while standing still in the shade.

The good thing about today was I had a very nice neighbor from Milwaukee who makes very cool jewelry too — Bad Dog Studio I believe is her business name. Together we rolled our eyes and made smart remarks about folks who are ornery and make everyone else’s morning a little more miserable than it needed to be.

The story of the hearts

Thursday, August 5th, 2010

Please click on picture for closer look.

Before I left for Michigan for a vacation I saw a picture of a sterling heart — just the outline but very attractive looking. But while in Michigan it was not a vacation as we had planned. Instead my dad passed away. His health had been getting worse and in the end, it is a blessing but it’s not what I had in mind for the trip back home.

Since coming home to Wisconsin I’ve been getting ready to go back to the Dane County Farmer’s Market on the square in Madison this Saturday and then on Sunday I have an art show at the Tallman House in Janesville.

Checking my earring racks I realized that I needed another 10 or so pair of earrings so that was yesterday’s project. But in the back of my mind while I was creating earrings was ‘Where did I see that sterling heart?” I would make a pair of earrings and then look. I looked through all my recent magazine purchases, looked at my tutorial downloads and pulled up the history on my computer — no heart to be found. I could have gotten the darn earrings made a lot quicker if that heart hadn’t haunted me all day. I emailed some online friends  wondering if any of them had seen it. One said she did and spent her morning check her magazines but couldn’t find it and another emailed me this morning with the info — thank you Kate and Barb!!

The heart on the left is the one I conjured up from what I remembered of the picture. The one in the middle is following the tutorial. The one on the right is a different version.

Maybe there is a reason this heart demanded to be made this week…