Your Aura is Blue
Spiritual and calm, you tend to live a quiet but enriching life. You are very giving of yourself. And it's hard for you to let go of relationships. The purpose of your life: showing love to other people Famous blues include: Angelina Jolie, the Dali Lama, Oprah Careers for you to try: Psychic, Peace Corps Volunteer, Counselor

About Me

My photo
This blog started out as a way for me to display and sell my handmade jewelry creations. I have set up shop on, where my shop name is "Dreamin of Beadin". The link to my Etsy store is located on the right hand side of this page. Please check me out!! If jewelry's not your thing, then check out the site anyway ~ there are plenty of talented artists selling lots of cool things there. For your reading pleasure, this blog will serve as a sneak peek into what's going on "behind the scenes" in my world. I love to cook, so there will be plenty of recipes, as well as product reviews and the occasional product giveaway (woo hoo!) I also love to take pictures of anything and everything, and I just bought a new camera, so there will be plenty of photos. And I like wine too, so things could get pretty interesting . . . Thank you for your support of me, Etsy and "all things handmade" :)


Shop Update: Anniversary Sale Ends Soon!

As of today, I am offering 20% off your purchase (before shipping) ~ this applies to my entire shop! Be sure to get in on the action now :) Once January ends, the sale will too :(
p.s. I feel another giveaway coming on . . . check back later this week!


Have a Heart

Valentine's Day is one of my most favorite holidays! I've always loved and looked forward to it, but that's probably the hopeless romantic in me speaking. My husband, on the other hand, feels differently. He gets a little bah-humbug'ish this time of year ~ his reasoning is that he feels forced into buying things by pushy retailers. He'd rather do something special his way, and not when the calendar date tells him to. I can't complain ~ he does nice things for me on a regular basis. The best things come when you least expect them, right?! I guess I see his point, but I can't resist the pull of Cupid. So, I thought I'd help him out by dropping some hints ~ hopefully he's reading. I would love any of these items from Etsy.
From Left to Right, here is where you can find all of the above:
A Different Kind of Love Bracelet , Faceted Smoky Quartz and White Biwa Stick Pearl Bracelet with Silver Heart Clasp ~ from jaC jewelry


January Earring Giveaway Winner!

I'm late in posting the winner of the January Earring giveaway, so let me get straight to the point . . .
The winner is Marci/junespirit2628!!!
Congratulations Marci, I hope you love your new earrings :)
Thanks to all who entered ~ this contest generated a lot of nice comments, which is always good for the pscyhe.
Pssst . . . a little birdie told me that there might be yet another giveaway before the month is out, so stay tuned!


Here's the Dish: Grape and Almond Mixed Greens Salad

Something very strange has been happening to me lately ~ I've been craving salad. I've always liked it, but to crave it like pizza or a slice of cheesecake is a bit unusual for me. I hope this healthy kick is here to stay. I'll be posting some of my favorite salad recipes in the weeks to come. Likewise, I'd love to hear any you may have, so please send them on! The recipe below originally came from here. It is very easy and requires few ingredients, which makes it perfect for a quick lunch on the go. I often bring it to chomp on at work. If you do, be sure to put the dressing on right before eating, since it tends to wilt the greens. If you're a texture girl like I am, then you prefer your lettuce crispy. I really love this one ~ it has the right balance of sweet and salty, with a touch of savoriness from the cheese and the perfect crunch from the almonds.
Grape and Almond Mixed Greens Salad
2 T. Olive Oil
1 T. Sherry Vinegar
2 t. minced shallot
1/2 t. minced garlic
1/4 t. kosher salt
1/4 t. freshly ground black pepper
4 c. mixed greens
1 c. grapes, halved
1/3 c. toasted and coarsley chopped almonds
1 oz. shaved sharp cheddar cheese
Combine first six ingredients in a non-reactive bowl. Drizzle over greens; sprinkle with cheese and almonds; toss to coat. Serve immediately.


Visual Creatures

A colleague of mine is a total babe. Hands down, no bones about it, a full on B-A-B-E. I give her total props for it ~ she works out, takes great care of herself, and has had surgery in a few areas to enhance her “assets”. She also happens to be a really sweet person, which is why I refer to her with the nice “b” word, and not the other one . . . haha.
I, on the other hand, am not a babe. My husband would say that I am, but that’s because he is either going blind, or because he has to since he married me. Jokes aside ~ he has fallen in love with the total package ~ my wit and brains ~ which God gave me to compensate for my lack of “babeness”, I suppose. Don’t get me wrong, I do think I’m “cute”. On a good day, I might even say I’m not half bad. I just don’t get the same attention from the male species that my co-worker friend gets. Men are visual creatures ~ they don’t always think with the brain that’s in their, um . . . cabeza.
Case in point: Recently, I was leaving my office to go to lunch, when I spotted “the babe” approaching the door with cell phone to ear and lunch from a carryout place in hand. To be nice, I hurried to open the door for her, since her hands were clearly full. At the same time, a “gentleman” came from behind me, so I stepped aside, letting him walk through. This man never took his eyes off of “Miss Babelicious” the entire time. His gooney looking smile and once-over glance of her made it obvious that he was enjoying the eye candy. He never looked my way . . . at all. I might as well have been invisible. Then, he said “Thank you” . . . to her!!! She didn’t do ANYTHING! I was the one who held the damn door open.
My colleague looked at me with complete confusion in her eyes. She thanked me for holding the door. Just then, my clever wit kicked in and I said to her, loudly “Make sure you tell him ‘you’re welcome’ ”. I gestured in the direction of the oogler. He looked back at both of us, face completely red.
I have to say, it felt pretty good to watch Mr. Bug Eyes walk away with his tail between his legs :)


Living with Less

Last year, Oprah did a show about Learning to Live with Less. She challenged her viewers to live with less “stuff” and with more “meaning”. The show really got me thinking. I’m not much of a materialistic person, with the exception of a few vices (ahem, shoes, for one). The past year, especially, has been a lesson on scaling back and consuming less. We spent far less on the “extras”, in an effort to save money for what we truly value ~ i.e. vacations. I would much rather be able to travel than drive a fancy new car, live in a big house or have an amazing new outfit for every day of the week. I realize that for some people, a vacation doesn’t fit into the equation. For many during these times, a choice must be made between paying the electric bill and putting food on the table. That is what makes Oprah’s experiment even more relevant. As I’ve been working on transforming a spare bedroom that has been primarily used for storage into my new crafting space, I’ve had to ask myself many times “can I live without this?” Many times, the choice to get rid of a certain item has not come without pain. The decision is made a little easier when I think about how much more I want a place to work on my craft, instead of that book that has never been opened, or some shoes that haven’t been worn in two years. It’s all just stuff, really. While we sometimes think that having a lot of stuff will make us happy, it can also complicate our lives. In the past week, I’ve gotten rid of quite a bit of stuff, much of which will be donated to charity. It makes me feel good to be doing that, but I’ve also vowed to end my hoarding ways from here on out. Like many Americans, I have been guilty of buying into the idea that more is more. I am now committed to being less of an impulse buyer. After all, a 10x10’ room will only fit so much. I want to remain on this path of living with less so that I don’t soon fill up the space to the point where it stifles me once again. I want it to be a place of inspiration, where I can create some amazing things. That’s what really makes me happy.
The families that Oprah highlighted were pretty much addicted to their electronic gadgets to the point that it distracted them from spending quality time together. Although I don’t consider myself a tech-addict, I definitely could not live without my laptop, or my digital camera. I need them in order to run my Etsy shop . . . does that count? :)
What about you . . . what material items could you not live without? Are there ways you could downsize if you wanted, or needed to? What are you doing to simplify your life and live with more meaning?


January Earring Giveaway!

I'm getting a bit of a late start with my giveaways for the month ~ as I always say, "Better late than never" . . . hopefully you will agree that these earrings made the wait worthwhile :) January marks the 3rd anniversary of my Etsy shop, and these pretty baubles have arrived just in time for Valentine's Day next month. They feature Sterling Silver heart charms that dangle from silver chain, along with colorful Swarovski crystals. Total length is 2". One person is going to win them ~ read on to find out how to enter:

Leave a comment on this post ~ be sure to leave a way for me to contact you in the event that you are the winner. Entries must be received by 12:00 EST on Saturday, 1/23/10. A name will be selected at random and the winner will be contacted on or around 1/24/10. This giveaway is open to anyone age 18 or older.


**Here's how to increase your odds of winning ~ you can earn up to two additional entries by doing any of the following:

  • 1. Become a follower of this blog -------------------------------->

  • 2. If you have a blog of your own, post a link to this contest on it.

  • 3. Tweet about this contest on Twitter.

Just be sure to let me know in your comment which of the above you have done so I can give you extra credit for them :)

Good luck, everyone!


Here's the Dish: Fontina and Basil Pizza with Artichokes

Last year, a friend and I went to a local pizzeria where we had the most incredible pizza with artichokes on it. It was so delicious, and I've been craving that pizza ever since. I really love artichokes, so when Good Housekeeping magazine ran an article recently called "5 Ideas for Artichoke Hearts", I was right on it. The first thing I made was this pizza ~ let me tell you, it was fabuloso! It took no time at all to put together. I cheated just a bit by using this frozen pizza dough, which is locally made. It's really authentic stuff and I highly recommend it, if you can find it at your local market. I used light Ricotta, to cut down on the calories and fat grams just a bit. It worked fine. Next time I make this pizza, I think I will sprinkle it with some freshly minced garlic, since I am such a garlic freak. Other than that, I wouldn't change a thing. In case you're not in the mood for meatless, I think it would be spectacular with ham or prosciutto on it, too.
Preheat oven to 475 degrees. Pat 1 1/3 lbs. pizza dough onto a 14-16" greased pizza pan. Bake 10 minutes or until golden brown. Spread 1 c. ricotta cheese over the dough; top with artichokes (14 oz. can that has been rinsed, drained and roughly chopped first), 1 1/2 c. shredded Fontina cheese, and 1/4 c. thinly sliced basil leaves. Bake 10-12 minutes or until cheese melts. Serves 6 ~ unless you're like my husband and I ~ we scarffed down the whole thing by ourselves while watching football one Sunday :)


Feeling Lost

Image found here

The other day, something possessed me to do a simple search of the word “jewelry” on Etsy. Curiosity got the best of me, I suppose. I was rather surprised when my little search turned up precisely 1,355,210 items called “jewelry”. Holy crap, that’s a lot. Now we all know how Etsy’s search is not exactly the most accurate, which is due in part to how Sellers tag (or mistag) their items. For instance ~ Something like a leather cord can turn up under jewelry, since it is a jewelry making component, however it should not fall under “handmade”, but we all know how that goes . . . I narrowed down my search by using the word “necklace”. That word turned up 548,489 results. Wowzers! Jewelry has always been an oversaturated category on the site, but I had no idea just how full it really is. I’m not saying that’s a bad thing, it just explains why my views seem to be at an all time low. It really gives a perspective on how much the site has grown since I joined in 2007. A constant complaint by sellers is how a recently listed item gets buried instantly. With that many items on the site, I can see why this happens. Etsy offers some tips for Sellers on how to promote their shops in other ways, such as Flickr, Facebook, Twitter. Most of these, I have done. Some have been worthwhile, but others . . . not so much. Don’t get me wrong ~ I love this venue, but to say I am frustrated is putting it lightly. Although I haven’t tracked it, I would say that I have spent nearly as much time promoting my little shop as I have creating things to go in it. I’ve been tenacious and unrelenting about doing so, hoping I would see dramatic results. At this point, I can say I am officially beat. I feel like I’ve promoted my little heart out, only to find out that I am just another fish in a very big sea. It’s disheartening.

What do I do now? I love making jewelry; goodness knows I can’t keep all of it :) I love Etsy, too. If you’re a seller, how do you promote your shop? What works, and what doesn’t? How do you stay motivated when things are slow? Surely I am preaching to the choir here, but I would really love some advice, some tips . . . heck, I’ll even welcome criticism. I’ll take anything you got. Anyone?


Buy 1, Get 1 for 50% off Sale!!

It's Week 2 of my "Etsy"versary Sale! The opportunity for you to get yourself an original "DOB" creation for a steal is here. I am offering Buy 1, Get 1 for 50% off on all items in the Sale section of my shop. The best part is that the more expensive item will be discounted ~ when does that ever happen?!? Please note that this special sale applies to items in the specified category only, and that no other coupons or discounts may be applied at this time. Hurry, this one won't last forever! To start shopping, click here.


The Power of Facebook

If you have a Facebook page, chances are you took part in the little bra color experiment that was circulating amongst members late last week. If so, you might want to click on this link to hear about the impact this fun game had on Breast Cancer awareness. It will probably blow your mind like it did mine! Wow, if only I could get my friends to put a link to my shop in their statuses . . . :)


Shop Update: It's My Etsy Anniversary!

January marks the 3rd Anniversary of my shop on Etsy! I really can't believe that it's already been three years since I started this venture ~ I sure have enjoyed every step along the way. To celebrate, and to thank everyone who has supported me, I will be offering specials, giveaways and other surprises all month long.
Each week I will feature a different promo in my shop. For the week of Jan 4-10, I will be offering FREE SHIPPING to everyone, including International customers. Hooray!!!
Keep your eye on this blog for the giveaways ~ I can tell you that there will be a few of those before the month is over ;)