Monday, May 27, 2013

Memorial Day "Thank You"

My Uncle Gene served in the United States Army during WWII, 1943-1946 in the 309th Infantry, 78th Division in enemy territory all through Germany.  During this time, Gene received his Combat Infantry Badge, among other accommodations. My Uncle Gene also became fluent in German and Russian and never lost his gift for languages.  (he used to try and teach my Rena German when she was a little kid!)  While in the service, Gene was promoted to Sargent, but being head-strong, he was demoted back down to PFC for fighting just 3 days before his discharge!  My uncle wasn't too happy, but knew it didn't always work to "Get your Irish up!"
Gene's brothers, Buck, Dale and Joe also fought in WWII and came back home after the war~what a Miracle, 4 boys in the War, and all 4 come back alive! I also have another uncle, Bill Bennett that fought in WWII and was a paratrooper over enemy lines; I have his dog tags, which he had given to my Dad.  Fortunately, Bill did make it back and went on to a career in the LAPD.  
I just want to say "Thank You" to all the Servicemen and Women who have served or are currently serving our country, without you we wouldn't know FREEDOM!

Saturday, May 18, 2013

I'm On the Etching Crazy Train! Woot, Woot!

I'm not kidding, I just learned how to etch on metal and I LOVE it! I basically taught myself ...with the help of a few tutorials on YouTube, which is also an awesome Time Suck. I was up into the wee hours one night plugged-in to the vast selection of tutorials on the topic, trying hard not to veer off into another creative avenue. (it's hard, let me tell ya!) Needless to say, I barely slept and was up early in the A.M. ready to descend on Radio Shack to get a bottle of Ferric Chloride~everything else I managed to have, which is another reason I love this process so much...It's EASY!  After getting home and setting-up my mini "lab" on the kitchen counter (don't worry Gang, I covered everything and disinfected afterwards.) I rechecked the vid and was on my way~check it out below, this is ALL you NEED!
 Ta Da! My very first sample of metal etching! I decided, if I was going to put the time in, I might as well do something useful as a sample, like a pair of earrings, right?  Once the etching chemical process is complete and the pieces(s) are clean, you just brighten them up with fine steel wool. (I had a whole package in the studio left over from my dad's tool box, been here forever and I never had a use for it until now! I KNEW I'd need that stuff someday!)  Love how they turned out~this is so cool!
 And here's the finished result made into earrings!  I've been wearing them everywhere for the past couple of days giving them a "Test Drive".  I always do this with a new piece of jewelry I make, just to make sure things hang right, etc., these are so lightweight, I can't feel them at all! Love, Love, Love them Gang!
I'll be adding them to my website soon at: 

Thanks Gang~now back to the studio to work on my Mixed Media piece that's drying.  (I have to do other things while the paint dries you know?)

Monday, May 13, 2013

What a Great Mother's Day I Had!

 I love Pic Collage! Various pictures taken this year of my awesome daughter, Rena. (or as I like to call her, Rena-Bean)  She's now 21 and I can't believe how quick the years have gone by! As you can see, she looks exactly like ME! Ha, ha!  I remember when she was a baby and a toddler, strangers would think I was the babysitter~and one time, her Grandma! (I quickly changed THAT hairstyle!)  When Ms Rena was born, she looked like a little papoose, of course, being part Apache makes that no mystery.  Even though we don't look alike, except for little subtleties here and there, she has my sense of humor, which is a bit twisted. She's very smart and logical and thinks on her feet well.  (like me...) She can fix a jammed Crop-A-Dile like no one I've ever seen, and count change back at the register like NO ONE in her generation! (yes, Grandpa used to always "let" Rena pay the bill at the coffee shop on Sunday mornings when we'd meet him and Grandma for breakfast and make her count the change back to him!)  Ms Rena was an awesome kid to raise and made my job easy, except when it came to doing algebra in 3rd grade (I so suck at math) and is an amazing young woman! She will always be "My Beauty"
My Mom. June aka June Phyllis as her mom used to call her when she needed her NOW!  Mom is a Hoot and a Half to be around and I've noticed that her sense of humor is more transparent now that she's in her 80's and thinks everyone should "lighten up!"  Ha, Mom, you slay me!  She's the very definition of a lady and very sharp and shrewd as a businesswoman.  She has tried for YEARS to teach me how to save and be smart with my dollars, which has been a hard lesson for me because I love to shop.  Or at least, I used to.  Since getting wammied by this latest recession, it's been a hard lesson but one I now appreciate.  Thanks Mom.  June is the very first Fashionista I knew and I think started the whole stylish thing for me.  She loves accessories, a beautiful high heel (although she has changed her foot ware to a wedge these days.) and well made, stylish handbags.  Wearing fabulous clothing was a sport to her when I was growing up, and a team sport when the holidays would hit or a dinner party would be brewing.  June would not only deck herself in the most stylish attire, but all of us! I have the pictures to prove it; Mom, Dad, my sister Rena, and myself, all matching on Easter, Christmas, various Luau parties, etc.~ and not the crappy weird matching outfits that people write coffee table books about, but the cool vintage dress that is like looking at a time capsule of style. Yep, that's my Mom! All of my Style and Pan ash I owe to you, along with my love of  fab clothing, accessories, shoes and all things textile and awesome! Also, a big part of my wit and "charm" is straight from You!  Another thing that Mom and I have in common is that "Miller Look" that we give without even realizing it. According to my daughter, it's a knowing glance that we share at the dinner table when someone says something we mutually think is lame, or a dork walks into the room, or when we discover we're out of bourbon.  It's like our own secret language that we think no one is aware of....ahhh, but they are. They shake in their boots when they catch it because it's almost certainly about them or something they're about to do.  It's harmless and funny and we always get caught.  That's us, Me & Mom aka The Girls!