Thursday, December 31, 2009

And the winner is ....

Thank you to everyone who entered this Giveaway ! After a random drawing from my favorite hat , the winner is Teresa of the soap corner! In the event that I am unable to reach Teresa , the Hat will be back for another try. PS Ladybugs , the kitty is missing his tail ! Happy New Year to all from the Clan of the Mountaindreamers!

Sunday, December 27, 2009

A yielding heart

"The old Lakota was wise. He knew that Man's heart away from nature becomes hard."

Luther Standing Bear
~Lakota Chief~

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Good Bye Solstice

Solstice from the latin ( sol = sun ) and ( sistere = standing still ) . I know I am glad I took latin now .I am glad another solstice has come and gone, the best part is the days are getting longer and that is something to celebrate. It is the return of the life giving light of the Sun. It is totally amazing to sit in an astronomy class and take in the whole celestial mechanics of seasonal change. The complex dance of the Earth's tilt, revolution about the Sun,and the Milankovitch cycles. Gazing at the night sky I realize the complexity of the dance of the heavens and how our lives depend on it's orderly steps.

Sunday, December 20, 2009

A GiveAway in honor of being Selectively Snowed In .

Handmade lampwork earrings in sterling

The Great Blizzard of 09 , of so it shall be called when all is said and done. Our snow behaved and only landed on the yards, thanks to that strategic move we can still get to the Store. Watching "Mamma Mia" and enjoying some ABBA. Cats are curled up by the stove and on the futon. Watching the birds at the feeders. Some Blue Birds , Maybe I will be able to catch them today with the camera . In honor of the snow and beautiful clear winter's night skye I will have a drawing for one pair of gorgeous handmade cobalt blue earrings, lampwork by RadiantMind, leave a comment on this blog to enter, we will be doing a random drawing out of a hat of course on Dec 31st.

one relaxed kitten, he is borrowed from across the street, comes in for a nap and to warm up . Does anyone know what is missing ?

Saturday, December 19, 2009

Snowy Saturday

Driving down town by the Great Smoky Mountain Railroad, quiet now but later lots of people will be in town to ride the train.

Clouds swirling around the 4000 foot ridges of the Alarkas, always a dynamic corridor and lots of cloud movement.

Looking towards the Great Smoky Mountain Park and the icy peaks, the sun peeking thru is perfect.

Heading into town, this always reminds me of living in a small Hobbit village.

Very happy water, we have had an abundance. The Juneywhank water shed as it flows down to the larger creek.

Icy Rhododendrons, one of the predominent species in the park.

The Beech is one of my favorite trees especially in the winter, the leaves remain longer than any other and always makes a nice rustle as the wind catches them .

Always an old friend , Tom Branch Falls as it pours into Deep Creek, not as much snow down by the creek as the water still carries a lot of warmth from the mild Fall days we have had.

Friday, December 18, 2009

Foggy Snow

Looking towards the Alarka Mountains

We had a bit of Fog and Snow this morning , sending the surrounding mountains into hiding. A good time to set out extra seed for our feathered friends.

My favorite mockingbird waiting for a turn at the feeder.

The Faerie Tree welcoming the snow!

The Faerie Tree singing to the snow !

Monday, December 14, 2009


The High Plains approaching the Northern Rockies near East Glacier

"We do not want riches but we do want to train our children right. Riches would do us no good. We could not take them with us to the other world. We do not want riches, we want peace and love." ~ Red Cloud~ Sioux Chieftan

Sunday, December 13, 2009

Lazy Sunday Afternoon

Pica and Skylar

Bob and Skylar

Pica ( in the box) and Bob the Cat lolling by the stove

No need to call 911, these guys are not in need of resusitation! Simply enjoying the wood stove. Yes all you greenies, the wood is seasoned, the stove has an 80% efficiency, and a catalytic converter. The wood was harvested from housing sites so it did not go to waste and no forests were stripped. My version of detaching from the Grid ever so slowly . Yes burning wood is messy , and crumbs every where with daily sweeping but it does allow you some local control over your heating source.

Friday, December 11, 2009

Free shipping till December 24

The holidays are upon us, Free Shipping in all my shops and 10% off with coupon in message box "DEC10FS" I will refund your paypal account . Wishing every one blessings and light for the season.

Monday, December 7, 2009


The Biltmore Estate lit up for Christmas

Home. The word evokes a lot of emotion. Last weekend I visited the largest private home in the US ( 175,000 sq ft.), The Biltmore House in Asheville, NC. My daughter in law Jennifer gave me tickets so my daughter Kathleen and I went up for the afternoon. The estate is 8000 acres, a mere shadow of its original size of 125,000 acres. It was designed to be a self sustaining estate, therefore ahead of it's time in some ways. For decades its magnificent house and grounds survived from the proceeds of it's dairy. Today there are tours , wine production, and a new Inn on the grounds. Visiting such an incredible estate brings to mind many questions about life, history , and how we as individuals fit into this intricate web of economy and society. There is a lot of history to be perused. Enjoying the lights with a moment to reflect within about my humble place in the Universe.

My daughter Kathleen looking quite European in Front of Le Chateau

Sunday, December 6, 2009


Have you ever noticed certain preferences for different coloured gems? Everything in life has a vibration , a wavelength if described by physics. In metaphysics each stone is considered to have properties that help with healing, protection and balancing a person's energy. This is one of the reasons I enjoy creating with genuine stone including the turquoise pictured. This is sleeping beauty turquoise in the classic robin egg blue and also in the rare green. Silver is a wonderful feminine metal that enhances the vibrations of other gems. Handmade glass which is a silica base is also full of energy. Below is a sampling of vibrations as summarized from Melody's book " Love is in the Earth". There are many books that describe the properties of gems and stones. This information can enhance your creations and choices in colour and gem combinations.

Amethyst: the stone of contentment and tranquility, it facilitates movement of energy from the lower to the higher chakras

Ametrine: A combination of citrine and amethyst equilibrates the physical with the vibration of our perfection, it releases negativity and balances the male and female energy,

Andean Opal , Pink : stimulates and activates the heart chakra, renews the relationship between the universe and self, it is the stone of nonviolence and teaches love , releasing and purifying the heart

Aquamarine:Shielding and protecting,the stone of courage, it enhances the intellect, balance and order

Carnelian : promotes peace , encourages harmony, dissapates anger.

Chalcedony : balances mind body emotions and spirit, It is a sacred stone to the Native American Peoples.It encourages a generous nature and good will .

Citrine: will not hold negativity, encourages wealth, balances and aligns the chakras with the more subtle etheric planes

Garnet: is the quintessential stone of health , it is sacred to Native American peoples. It increases personal freedom and respect

Iolite: the stone of the third eye and astral travel, allowing change without pain

Kyanite:Never needs cleansing, it is one of the best attunement stones, aligning all the energy bodies

Kunzite: the stone of Divine love and joy, heals the heart

Labradorite: Contains the evolved galactic energy of other worlds. It is the "temple of the stars " promoting understanding of our present destiny

onyx: Decreases grief, it helps to absorb the energy from the universe that are needed. It facilitates wise decision making. Cleansing for the intuitive centers and opens those centers to new opportunities

Ruby Zoisite: Increases activity, changes negative energy to positive ,producing more positive from the negative. it is a vehicle for altered states, amplifying psychic states

Silver: A fluid feminine energy that acts as a subtle catalyst energizing the stones it accompanies.

Spinel: Ruby family, strengthens the awareness of your heart and it's connections. Encourages love

Sugilite:Is the stone essential for this time , demonstrating love and manifesting our Earth plane energy, flowing from the crown to the base chakra opening the question to " Why am I here?"

Tourmaline:Stimulates the chakras , according to the color of the stone. balances the mind, decreases fear, increases understanding and self confidence

Turquoise: The stone of the shaman, spirit healer, encourages wisdom, trust and kindness

Source: Love is in the Earth, Kaleidoscope of crystals update, By Melody, 2003

Saturday, November 28, 2009

Water Spirit

A good day to visit the water spirit. A walk up Deep Creek in the Great Smoky Mountain National Park.

Looking across the water above the first bridge ( Deep Creek Trail)

Never Ending variety of Sun and Ripples

Tom Branch Falls winter bare

Devil's Dip ( a place of green water )

Long view of Deep Creek that starts 14 miles upstream at 5000 feet Near NewFound Gap

Wednesday, November 25, 2009


"You must be the change you wish to see in the world" ~Mahatma Gandhi~

Sunday, November 22, 2009

A stop on our drive up the Going to the Sun Road. Road work up high stopped traffic at Avalanche Creek, walking out on the Creek Bed a couple of hundred feet over water smoothed pebbles to say hello to the Water Spirit. Since it was Fall the water levels were low, allowing me to stand on ground that becomes a raging stream of snow melt in late spring.

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Indiesmiles coupon

Visit the Indiesmiles coupon directory for savings during Black Friday thru Cyber Monday at my Etsy store. indiesmiles

Sunday, November 15, 2009

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

New Editions

New creations, I was really wanting to use the new ear wires , I do have a thing about an unusual ear wire. I feel it makes the earring. I also have some standard french hooks if those are preferred and will change them if desired. I will be listing these in my shops this week. A bevy of natural turquoise ( kingman and sleeping beauty ) coral, aquamarine and labradorite, all silver is either sterling or .99 fine beads from the Hill Tribe area.

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Artist Feature : The Storybeader

Today I am featuring the Storybeader as part of our promotion for Boot camp at icraft Deb is from Lawton Oklahoma . Oklahoma is home of the Western Band of the Cherokee and rich in traditional Native American history. I feel a connection to her work as I live close to the heart of the Eastern Band in Cherokee, North Carolina. I have appreciated the traditions of the area. In particular I noticed her Tipi treasure necklace with it's many interesting details. Another interesting feature of Deb's work is the Haiku or poem she writes for each of her pieces. This naturally leads to the beautiful handmade journals that she sells on iCraft. For more of her work please see her blog. Below is her interview for the iCraft Sellers Bootcamp! Please visit her Blog for more fine hand crafted items.

My name is Deborah Baroff. I was born and raised in New Jersey, lived in Florida, California and now Oklahoma, which has been my home for 29 years. I grew up in a close family, with lots of relatives visiting. My father was a sailor, for fun, so I grew up sailing. I love the water.

I received my BA in Humanities, and earned a Masters in Library Science. Yes, I'm a librarian, with an emphasis in special libraries. I've been working in a Museum in southwestern Oklahoma for the last 22 years. Needless to say, I'm love my job. I'm married, once divorced, with no children... except for my doggies. I love books and writing, gardens, visiting historic places and museums, and being on the computer. About three years ago, I decided I needed a creative outlet, so I started designing jewelry. I write a haiku for each necklace. My specialty is the treasure necklace. After attending a bookmaking class, I started sewing journals and sketchbooks, and believe this is my new creative direction.

Tell us about your shop.
My shop here is the Storybeader's Workshop. I've put a lot of thought into the name. I am known as the storybeader on other sites, and didn't want to loose my name recognition, so I decided to add workshop when I started sewing books. My blog, Stroll Through Storyland, fits both venues.

How did you get started?
Probably like a lot of other people, gift-giving.

What is your favorite item in you shop ?
I think it's the first journal I made on my own. That always happens... maybe because I'm so excited about starting.

What’s your favourite item that you have ever made ?
It has to be my Turtle Treasure Necklace. I love turtles and fetishes and color. This necklace has all of that, and more.

What's you most memorable sale?
Think I spoke about this earlier in the week, or maybe it was somewhere else... I had just posted a necklace on a different online selling venue. A woman saw it, and said she couldn't live without it, in so many words. The sale took about 30 minutes, from being put online to being sold!

Where do you find inspiration for your designs?
Nature and color. The covers of my journals and sketchbooks have to be something I enjoy looking at, but I want them to be functional. Then, I do have a book of haiku floating around in my head....

Tell us about a favorite designer.
I've met a lot of great jewelry designers. One of my favorite, when I was just starting out, was Eni Oken. She first taught me wire wrapping, and if there's anyone out there who wants to learn this technique, Eni has loads of lessons you can buy online and download. Very thorough and easy to understand.

What's your favorite color.
Blue, no doubt about it. The color of water, turquoise, and the sky on a nice day!

What's your favorite room at home? Why is it your favorite?
My living room, that really serves as my workshop and office. Lots of windows, the front door (and back door) are close by, my computer and tool room, bathroom and kitchen.... yes, I have a small house!

Do you have a (your product) tip you'd like to share with readers?
There's a number of things I would tell a person sewing paper together; act deliberately and carefully; never underestimate how much paper you need to wrap your book covers, and sew with waxed thread.

What are your (upto 5) favorite blogs or website? (outside yours or icraft)? -
wow! that's a hard one. I have so many. OK, I have a lot of etsyblogger teammates, so excuse me, my friends, but three favorites
1) Two Zany Zebras - Mama Z has the cutest stories about her family's escapades.
2) Coffee Pot People - a sole sister, I love her sculpture and photographs
3) A Keeper's Jackpot - she takes me hiking with her into the mountains
I've met a number of bloggers through EC that I love to read:
First Door on the Left ( my current political fix)
The Photographic Aspect (absolutely Beautiful photography)

What are your (upto 5) favorite magazine(s), and or book(s).
My favorite book from childhood is Charlotte's Web.
One of my all time favorite authors is James Michener - I think the first book of his I read was The Source. I'm in a women's book club now, and some favorite recent books are The Dollmaker, A Midwife's Tale, and The Widow's War.

What do you do to relax and unwind?
Walk. I'd rather walk in the woods with friends, or in a park. But I walk at the YMCA too.

Monday, November 2, 2009

Walking with the Moon

I have an unsatiable liking of the Moon, especially as it becomes full and graces us with so much reflected light in the still night. Walking quietly with the dogs ( they are quite stealthy) at first I feel it must be a UFO with such brightness on the horizon.

Then I notice that no , it is our lady of the night, once again sharing her brilliance for our pleasure this evening . Reasssuring us with her light that no coyotes will jump out of the bushes this time.

And then when she seems so distant, round and cool, she decides to be playful and hide behind the trees. Goodnight Moon!

Sunday, November 1, 2009

Earrings: A good afternoon

Well those of you who lead double lives know how much one part can obliterate the other. It has been 8 weeks since I have had the space to create, totally itching fingers, September was devoted to professional needs ( my left brain hurts) then vacaion , and the recovery period. So finally some new items to list on Etsy, 1000Markets, Artfire and iCraft. Please see links to the side as I am crosseyed and will come back later to hyperlink. ( ok all you fast computer people quit laughing ) Wishing you a wonderful week filled with peace and happiness.

From top left : labradorite, fine silver,garnet,glass midnight bead ; peace earrings with garnet, moonstone, color change merlot sterling ; Radiantmind handblown beads in blue, raku, amber on sterling ; peace earrings in onyx,garnet,natural chalcedony on sterling ; Earthy sterling peace earrings in warm Agates.

Friday, October 30, 2009

Endless Possibilities

Like the varied pebbles on the beach, life brings us endless possibilities each day for us to choose from . Each day is a gift and awaits our creativity to carve out the positive.