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18 September 2014

30 Words :: Still


 sky melds with water
reflecting
an outer calm
 (but which way is up?)
all the while
hiding the 
inevitable truth
that the 
current
keeps on moving
despite
appearing
absolutely
s    t    i    l    l


I shot this the other morning on the balcony off my office at work on the Wisconsin River using my iPhone camera. Every day the water shows a different mood and this one with a relative calm is very rare. Can you tell which way is up?
And I feel that this image sums up where I am at right about now as well! Enjoy!


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The premise of 30 Words Thursdays is simple...


Take an image (preferably one you shot, or have permission to use).


Write 30 Words about it. No more. No less.


Post it each Thursday.


Add your link to the InLinkz on my 30 Words Thursday post.
(InLinkz code will be open for one week.)
Enjoy seeing what others have captured by visiting them and leaving a comment.


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Get the InLinkz code for your blog!


17 September 2014

Unexpected Findings Book Tour

“If one cannot enjoy reading a book over and over again,
there is no use in reading it at all.”

—Oscar Wilde
 
There is nothing that I like more than a good challenge. So when my friend Michelle Mach came calling saying that she wanted me to join her for a book that she was writing about using everyday jewelry findings in unexpected ways, I couldn't wait to sign up!


http://bit.ly/1q86pCo
Unexpected Findings: 50+ Clever Jewelry Designs Featuring Everyday Components

It is no secret that I have always wanted to write a book of my own. And one day, dammit, I am going to do just that. But until that time, it is really gratifying to be selected by someone you admire in the industry and asked to join in a stellar cast of jewelry characters to come up with new creative ideas. Plus it gives me a bit of a glimpse inside the workings of a book project. Thank YOU, Miss Michelle! Seeing my name on the pages of this book is indeed a great honor. But to be in the company of some of the finest talent in the jewelry universe is even better! I sometimes have to pinch myself to believe it is real.

I was very intrigued by the opportunity to let these workhorses of the jewelry trade come into their own light. In the beginning of the book, there is a very comprehensive section of all the different findings there are. Some are completely new to me! In some of the pieces, I had a hard time figuring out what the unexpected finding was, it was that well integrated into a design! And after looking at all the creative and dynamic ideas in this book, I will never look at that jump ring, glue-on bail, ball chain connector, ribbon end or spacer bar as just a thing to be neglected. They can be the star of the show! 

After perusing the digital version of this book, I cannot wait to get a real copy! There is nothing better than sitting down with a new beading book. I own almost all that are out there. Some I look at initially and then shelve them. But I know that this one will be on my most-referenced shelf to be readily accessible for reading and re-reading (i.e., the floor next to my beading table!). And the best part is it is like sitting down with some awesome friends, because that is what I consider all the people in this book. 

So here are just a few of the pieces that I made. See if you can figure out what unexpected finding is featured in each of these! If you leave a comment on this post what the three featured findings are, I will enter you in a drawing for a package of mystery findings just from me!


I Dream of the Sea


Rings Around the Monarch


Wish Me Luck
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What's a party without party favors? Miss Michelle has some great prizes up for grabs (see below). Leave comments on my post, or any of the contributors book tour posts this week to be entered to win the following prizes:


Grand Prize
$50 (Fifty Dollars) Etsy Gift Card (1 prize)

You can spend this on anything offered at the many individual shops on Etsy.  This could be fabulous art beads, cool jewelry findings, a hand painted coffee mug, a knitted scarf ... whatever you want.  (Note:  Not all Etsy shops accept gift cards, so if you win, you may want to do a search for those that do.)

Fun with Findings Prize Pack 



















First Prize
Fun with Findings Kit (2 prizes)

You can win some of the exact findings used in the book, plus a bunch of other findings that I thought were cool. (I ran out of room to add all the page numbers to the photo!) Prize packs include everything pictured here: jump rings, head pins (handmade by Miss Fickle Media and C-Koop), filigree links, clasps (hook-and-eye, ball chain, lobster), bead caps, cord ends, and more!


Second Prize (3 prizes)
To play off the "unexpected" in my book title, three winners will receive a small mystery pack of findings (valued at $8).  No photo or preview ahead of time.  It will be a surprise!

Rules

This giveaway is open to all visitors except the book's contributors and author (me).  Contributors are welcome (and encouraged!) to comment, but won't be entered in the drawing.  

One comment per person per blog post for a maximum of eight chances to win if you visit and comment on all eight book-related posts during the September 15-19, 2014 period.  

We'd love for you to help us spread the word on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and Pinterest.  No extra entries, but lots of good karma!
Michelle will contact the winners by email this weekend (Sept. 20-21) and post the winners here next week (Sept. 23).   Remember when you comment that we'll need an email address to contact you if you win.


Blog Tour Schedule - September 15-19, 2014


Have a good time hopping around the participants posts this week, here are the links and dates!



Monday, Sept. 15




Tuesday, Sept. 16





Wednesday, Sept. 17


                         Erin Prais-Hintz === You are here!



Thursday, Sept. 18




Friday, Sept. 19


Disclosure: If you purchase the book via the links I have included in this post, I will receive a small amount of Interweave affiliate credit. Thank you for your support!

 Special Savings going on in the Interweave house Sept 17-19th! Woot!

Save up to 30% with Scratch and Save at Interweave

 Click here to buy your copy now!

11 September 2014

30 Words :: Leap


Toes pointed in a new direction.
Uncharted territory ahead.
Plans falling into place.
Now 
 I 
stand
on the edge
taking the leap.
Creating my own wings.
Breathe deep. Fly high.




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The premise of 30 Words Thursdays is simple...
Take an image (preferably one you shot, or have permission to use).
Write 30 Words about it. No more. No less.
Post it each Thursday.
Add your link to the InLinkz on my 30 Words Thursday post.
(InLinkz code will be open for one week.)
Enjoy seeing what others have captured by visiting them and leaving a comment.
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Get the InLinkz code for your blog!


04 September 2014

30 Words :: Stained Glass


The light
hits just right
making this glass wall
glow.
Intricate details
meticulously applied,
each one
telling a story.
These windows are the
personality
and
soul
of this revered space.

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A few more than 30 Words...
My grandfather, Victor Prais, was a successful local businessman. He owned a funeral parlor/furniture store as well as the Prais Religious Goods store, where locals bought their holy cards, rosaries, vigil candles and opłatki. It is not uncommon in our area to find his name on religious items, etched in brass candelabras used on the altar, hanging on a plaque as a founding member or here, on a beautiful piece of stained glass at St Stanislaw's Church. (Our family name is even on the street outside this particular church, where he and his family were active members.) Our parish, Newman University Parish, is now merging with this neighboring church and so I will be seeing a lot more of this beautiful window. I am finding it hard to find my place in this new building. But I smile when I recall the Christmas masses there with my grandma dressed in her fur coat and hat. I never knew my grandfather, but it feels like it coming full circle. Change is hard, but having this reminder of the continuity of my family name will help me weather the coming transition.


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The premise of 30 Words Thursdays is simple...
Take an image (preferably one you shot, or have permission to use).
Write 30 Words about it. No more. No less.
Post it each Thursday.
Add your link to the InLinkz on my 30 Words Thursday post.
(InLinkz code will be open for one week.)
Enjoy seeing what others have captured by visiting them and leaving a comment.
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Get the InLinkz code for your blog!


28 August 2014

30 Words :: Bunny Cuddles


Here.
Hold this.
No hesitation.
Cupping the silky softness
in your hands.
Stroking tiny ears.
Recognizing
your granddaughter.
Relaxed.
Calm.
Smiling.
Seeing you
light up
in this way
is
priceless.


Last Friday there was a 'County Fair' day at the center with games and fair food and animals. I came back to see if I could help. When I got there mom was already outside, pushing the wheelchair of another resident to view the little petting zoo set up on the lawn. Baby ducks just two days old... a turkey... a peacock... a piglet and a pup... two turtles and some salamanders... a chicken that loves to be held... kittens... and even an emu! But when they offered mom a baby bunny, she took right to it. She didn't let that bunny go and wandered all around, stroking its soft fur. I haven't seen my mom this animated and engaged in a long time. Almost makes me wish that I could get a bunny myself just so I could bring it to her! It has been five months at this place and I have never seen her happier. And while she can't really tell me how she is feeling I could see the joy in her face and that gave me peace.


~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
The premise of 30 Words Thursdays is simple...
Take an image (preferably one you shot, or have permission to use).
Write 30 Words about it. No more. No less.
Post it each Thursday.
Add your link to the InLinkz on my 30 Words Thursday post.
(InLinkz code will be open for one week.)
Enjoy seeing what others have captured by visiting them and leaving a comment.
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~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Get the InLinkz code for your blog!


21 August 2014

30 Words :: Our First Dance



take my hand
follow my lead
a tug on your shoulder means
you turn
we t-w-i-r-l across
the dimly lit floor
sashaying
between the couples
our first
father-daughter
dance

Excuse the dim lighting, poor sound and shakiness on this impromptu video from our niece Megan's wedding last weekend.

Paul and I took ballroom dance in college and the only thing we remember is the swing (which we do pretty well!) and the mechanics of the lead. He is the only man I have ever danced with that does this exceptionally well. He dislikes that most couples simple stand still and sway when slow dancing, not using the entire floor. I love being glided around the floor by him. 

He is explaining to Tiny Dancer how this works... a tug on the shoulder and you turn, a pull on the hand to guide you. Elvis is a particular favorite of his, so this was a sweet choice for what I suspect is the first (of many, I hope!) father-daughter dance.

May our Tiny Dancer one day find someone who will take her hand, hold her close and guide her just like her daddy does.


~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
The premise of 30 Words Thursdays is simple...
Take an image (preferably one you shot, or have permission to use).
Write 30 Words about it. No more. No less.
Post it each Thursday.
Add your link to the InLinkz on my 30 Words Thursday post.
(InLinkz code will be open for one week.)
Enjoy seeing what others have captured by visiting them and leaving a comment.
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~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Get the InLinkz code for your blog!




14 August 2014

30 Words :: My One Wish


She always brought me
gladiolas
from the farmer's market 
on my birthday.
This year
I bought glads
for myself. 
My one wish
is that she would
know me and 
r  e  m  e  m  b  e  r



~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
The premise of 30 Words Thursdays is simple...
Take an image (preferably one you shot, or have permission to use).
Write 30 Words about it. No more. No less.
Post it each Thursday.
Add your link to the InLinkz on my 30 Words Thursday post.
(InLinkz code will be open for one week.)
Enjoy seeing what others have captured by visiting them and leaving a comment.
 ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~


~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Get the InLinkz code for your blog!

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