Saturday, 29 December 2007

Look out here's 2008!

How was your Christmas? Ours was the usual routine, but the children do make it a special time! They were to bed early on Christmas Eve as they couldn't wait for Santa to come, and as expected, he came sometime through the night as their Santa bags had lots of pressies in them the next morning :)

Then there was usual ripping and tearing of paper frenzy before going to my in-laws mid morning... for more ripping and tearing before lunch! The kids played happily with their gifts all afternoon and in fact the whole time since (although I will not be surprised when the "I'm bored" statement is eventually uttered!).

My girls (the twins) are still on a high, as their birthday is just around the corner - on New Years Day. This of course means a huge bonanza for them at this time of the year, although the rest of the year is a little light in the present department!

It is really hard having children with a birthday on a public holiday so close to Christmas (I feel totally sorry for those who have their birthdays actually on Christmas Day!). You want to do something for them that is special, but in our case, everyone is tired after the festivities of New Years Eve and most of their little friends are involved with family things or away on holidays.

Last year we had a pre-party for them the week before school broke up and that seemed to work well. But you still have to do something for their actual birthday too.

We always have a cake (two actually) and have in the past had a New Years Day brunch or lunch with friends and relatives that happen to be around. This year, we are going out for New Years Eve and the children will be staying with Grandma. So we are proposing a BBQ style lunch at our house with the cake afterwards. (This gives us time to sleep in a little and get everything prepared ;) ). I've been looking at what I can cook and found this scrumptious looking recipe on the My Day Off blog. Perfect for a hot summer day when everyone is a little tired!

I've included a picture of a beautifully bright coin pearl bracelet that would be perfect for New Year's celebrations. The colours in the photo are quite true to life and set off beautifully by the silver.

Friday, 21 December 2007

In readiness for Christmas

Woohoo! Only a few days until Christmas :) I have taken a quote I saw recently on the Small Business Diva blog, to heart. It stated “The bad news is time flies. The good news is you’re the pilot”. So, even though it meant a lot of busy days I have achieved a few things in time for Christmas....all my Christmas orders have been completed and sent, christmas cards have been written and sent(this in itself is a huge achievement - see my last post!), Christmas gifts have been purchased (thank goodness for online shopping) and wrapped and sitting under the tree and the house has had a pre-Xmas clean and the obligitory moving around of furniture ;) . Surprising the end result of having everything under control has given me a real lift, rather than the tired, run-down feeling I was expecting after all that rushing! Maybe I'm on a Christmas- high?

The children finish school tomorrow and I am really looking forward to spending a fun Christmas with them - the girls are really into Christmas and Santa and are so excited its quite contagious. My son is starting to question the whole Santa idea - he told me a few days ago "I know you're really Santa - you dress up like him and put the presents under the tree" LOL, I honestly told him that "I have never dressed up as Santa". He saw my sincerity and so is happy to go along with it for now!

I started our own Christmas tradition when the children were very little. We had a lovely Santa/North Pole style snow globe that was only allowed to be touched leading up until Christmas. Each night before bed, we would lovingly bring it down and shake it, gaze at is as the snow settled before doing it again. Then we would read one of our special Christmas books - lovely picture books about Christmas, Santa, elves and so on. Just to get into the Christmas spirit. Unfortunately, Meredith in her absolute adoration for the globe broke it last year and I haven't found a replacement. But we are still reading the Christmas books. Now that the children are older I have also started reading a small Christmas themed novel out loud to them which they seem to be enjoying. My in-laws have their own traditions which we share with them on Christmas Day. Do you have a Christmas tradition in your family?

Today's picture is a bracelet that would make your wrist sparkle on Christmas Day (or any day of the year!). Soft pastel hues of lavender, pink and white freshwater pearls, icy rock crystal quartz and pale pink rose quartz combine in a two strand twist with an adorable sterling silver heart toggle clasp.

I would like to take this opportunity to wish you all a peaceful and loving festive season... and I hope Santa is good to you! ;)

Monday, 10 December 2007

Christmas cards and Variscite

Yes, its that time of the year again....I have started to receive Christmas cards from well-meaning (and organised) friends that serve to make me feel very inadequate!!! They must write them in the middle of the year and send them out on the first of December!? I usually stumble around and eventually find some suitable cards, then hastily write our yearly letter (summary of our lives for the last twelve months) and post them off in the absolutely last post available (that postmarks them before Christmas Day)....if I'm lucky. *sigh* Okay, I might not be as organised as I would like but at least I have started looking for cards! I found these very nice ones at Jenni's Papercraft Designs. I note she made them back in November. I wonder if she sends them out before Christmas Eve?

Last week was an absolutely mad week with 2 days out in neighbouring towns (140 and 100kms away - each way) respectively. Add to that two visits to friends/neighbours, a P&F meeting, a Christmas drinks party, delivering and making get the picture I'm sure! I was seriously considering doing a pre-Christmas show in Mudgee, but I just don't have the time. Instead, I am concentrating on getting all the orders done this week so that I can spend the week leading up to Christmas with my children. I felt I actually missed out last year as I was so busy with work, so I won't be making the same mistake this year!

Do you like the necklace pictured today? I have to admit I am a 'green' girl. I just love green. When I look at my stock the green far exceeds other colours - I just can't help myself and have to buy green stones!!!! LOL, this reminds me - I received a great sweatshirt today that I ordered from a favourite geology related site - UnEarthed Tees, who I have mentioned before. It says "As a matter of fact I do have rocks in my head, I'm a gemmologist" Ha ha! Ooops, off the track there....

OK, today's necklace is a simple yet totally stunning piece. Grand in size, elegant in shape and vivid in colour. The wonderful stone used is granny-smith-apple-green variscite, together with lightly oxidised sterling silver bars and tiny silver balls.

Variscite was first described in the early nineteenth century and its name comes from the Latin name for Vogtland "Variscia" in Germany where it was found. Very early beads of Spanish variscite that date from around 4500BC have been found in the Italian Alps, along with articles of green jade that seemed much admired and desired. (Maybe they liked green too!) Deposits of Variscite are also found in the USA and in Australia and it is often confused with green varieties of turquoise. Gemmologically it is a phosphate mineral and its colour comes from chromium. Metaphysically, it is classed as a 'worry' stone - it is used extensively to calm busy minds and nervous systems, helping with anxiety, stress, depression, fear and worry. It also encourages truthfulness, courage and hope.

Till next time :) By the way, don't forget free worldwide shipping if you need a special piece to wear for Christmas!

Monday, 3 December 2007

Coin pearl earrings and a busy family week

Another busy week - lots of enquiries, orders to finish and things to do with my family. To add to the mayhem, it was the end of year dance concert and I spent two days sewing costumes and a day at rehearsals/concert. My girls looked like very pretty little ballerinas and my son looked suitably funky for his hip hop performance.

Two of the children received medals for their work during the year which I was so chuffed about, but number three missed out and my heart nearly broke when I saw her disappointment. As soon as people started to disperse there was an outpouring of tears, but wasn't she brave to hold it all in during the proceedings! She recovered remarkably well (and quickly) thankfully. Although it is a hard lesson to learn (especially when you are six and a twin), it was one she coped very well with. She still wants to dance so her desire hasn't been dimmed by her disappointment.

Are you getting ready for Christmas? It is now December and thoughts are flying around in my head about gifts (although I haven't managed to 'catch' any of those thoughts yet!). Although I don't often look at jewellery sites (I wonder why LOL), I saw this one and what a great idea! They take a digital image and 'photo engrave' it onto a flat pendant of silver or gold. What a great idea for a long lasting memory!

Today's pic is of a simple yet stunning pair of earrings. Palest natural pink freshwater 'coin' pearls with gorgeous lustre are linked together onto 12ct gold fill studs for a fresh, elegant look. These would look particularly stunning on a brunette (mmmm, maybe I need to make ME a pair ;D ! )


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