Natural Gemstone Pendants - handmade by me in the United Kingdom


I make unique one-of-a-kind pendants using natural gemstones like Agate, Amethyst, Jasper and Quartz but at very affordable prices. If you want to be different from the crowd, then check out my pendants and other items. You will never see anyone wearing the same as you.

I design and make greeting cards too.

Find me on Facebook, Google Plus, Etsy and Folksy

Wednesday, 31 August 2011

Those scales must be wrong...

Yesterday was definitely not a good day weight-wise (are there good days? I don’t know of many) but anyway I posted this on FB or Google+ yesterday:

When I got on the scales this morning I had put on a pound which unfortunately took me up to the next stone so I commiserated by making some almond biscuits, a coconut and cherry sponge, and some cheese and tomato ciabatta bread. There that's better. Now I will get the stew and dumplings ready for dinner. If I was American I would only have gained a pound but here it took me up to the next stone!!!

Well I can safely say that I have now lost that extra pound today – purely because we ate one of the ciabatta loaves when it came out of the oven, a couple of biscuits just to try them and make sure they were ok and scraped the bowl of the cake mixture, coconut butter icing and coconut icing for the top.  You know how it is - you make up the icing but there isn't really quite enough when you cover the cake so you make up a bit more which is then too much, so after putting a too thick layer on the cake you just have to finish the rest in the bowl rather than throw it awayJ  A bit later we tried the cake.  So come time to make the stew we were just too full to even think of eating it if I cooked it, so the meat went back in the fridge for today and later on we had some more of the bread with a bowl of soup.  So maybe because we didn’t have a proper dinner, or just by fluke, but the pound has disappeared again today.  I have this distinct feeling that it will probably rear it’s ugly head with another pound friend tomorrow to make up for it!

I will also be definitely paying for all the baking as today I have spent all day sitting on my ample backside packaging pendants to send, as a whole load finished on ebay at the same time yesterday so I had lots to sent.  

Here is todays joke.  LOL - replace “blonde” for “brunette” if you are blonde.  And scroll down slowly.

A few days ago I was having some work done at my local garage. A blonde came in and asked for a seven-hundred- ten.

We all looked at each other and another customer asked, 'What is a seven-hundred- ten?'
She replied, 'You know, the little piece in the middle of the engine, I have lost it and need a new one..'

She replied that she did not know exactly what it was, but this piece had always been there.

The mechanic gave her a piece of paper and a pen and asked her to draw what the piece looked like.

She drew a circle and in the middle of it wrote 710. He then took her over to a car just like hers which had its hood up and asked 'is there a 710 on this car?'.
She pointed and said, 'Of course, its right there.' the mechanic fainted

If you're not sure what a 710 is:

Tuesday, 30 August 2011 many coincidences

First of all today, here is the last of those riddles I found for you to think about (answer a the end of the blog):

Now I seem to have had a whole load of synchronicities happening to me over the last few days.

I saw a link on Facebook to a song (see below) from Christine in one of my groups and 2 days later I get another link to this same song from Prediction Magazine on FB too.  Well I know it could have somehow done the rounds and got back to me but I very rarely get song links show up on my page, so two of the same song in two days seems strange in itself.   So much so that I decided to just let Christine know how strange it was and I happened to notice she lived in the next town to where I grew up.  She was just another member of the group and not in my friends list at the time but when I went to her page to send her a message I noticed a friend at the top of her list (Lyn) and thought she was someone I knew so after sending Christine the message I clicked into Lyn’s page to see if she was the person I knew.  I don’t think she was after all but I seemed to recognise the face.  LOL – are you following me so far?  Anyway, low and behold, near the top of her friends list was a photos of someone I did know – another Lyn and a good friend from my hometown (ok not that far away from where I live now so I can see the geographical connection) but also on the 1st Lyn’s list of friends at the top was someone who was called the combined names of my 2 eldest children.

A very strange run of co-incidences indeed.  Now I am a great believer in synchronicity but I still haven’t quite worked out where it was leading me.  But I dare say it will all be revealed at some stage and I will think back and realise that all the coincidences led me somewhere.  I read a message from someone in another group today which was a little anecdote of someone trying to explain how their illness affected their daily life and the person had the same problem as my good friend, so that is another little connection.   

This is the link to the song that started all of this.  It is a lovely medley of songs from someone who I had never heard of before and his version is really enjoyable.  I played it over and over quite a few times, so I thought I would share it with you too.

Oops, nearly forgot the answer to the riddle:

The recluse lived in a lighthouse.

Monday, 29 August 2011

5 Tips on How to Like pages and add friends on Facebook without risk of receiving a ban.

I thought I would some more Facebook tips today, especially for those with business pages.

1.     Only add 5 new friends a day – always write a message for each request and keep each message worded differently
2.     Only Like 5 new pages a day and, unless you need to, don’t add a message on their wall
3.     If you do want to Like someone’s page and let them know about you, then don’t add a link at that stage, just say from @(your business name) – this is known as tagging.  You can always add a link to your website or a product at another time.  If they Like you back, then they will automatically get the posts you add to your own page.
4.     Only leave the maximum of 5 links a day on other people’s walls
5.     Only add up to 5 posts a day on your own business wall so that people don’t get fed up of all your posts and Unlike you.


You can go over these safe limits, but if you do take it slowly and spread them throughout the day.  If you get a warning stop immediately and “lay low” for a day or so by not Liking people or adding friends but you can join in wall discussions or add posts as normal to your business page.  Adding 5 a day is better than adding 20 and then being banned for 15 days (which seems to be the current ban time).


If you do “normal” things in between like using the wall for posts and answering messages or joining in with other comments then FB classes that as “normal activity” but if you only ever add friends or Like people then it hits the FB algorithm which flags up that you are indulging in spamming activities.  It doesn’t have exceptions for the new people who want to add loads of friends as it is merely a machineJ


Presumably the more you are on FB and join in with everything else then you could probably Like and befriend people a lot more than this as it would still seem like normal activity.


You also have to remember that if you Like too many people too quickly and leave a post, then even before you would get a warning, FB classes your posts as spam and send them to Hidden Posts anyway so they aren’t even seen the recipient.


Another thing to realise is that too many unanswered, ignored or refused friends requests also come to the FB algorithms attention which is another reason not to ask too many too quickly as there will be too many outstanding.


I learnt these things the hard way as I received a couple of bans when I first started on Facebook because I did not realise what I should and should not do, so hopefully I can prevent you falling into the same trap.

Sunday, 28 August 2011

She didn't turn up ....

Just a quick snippet of a late blog today as I have been busy cleaning - yuk! but sometimes I just have to leave the computer and do it.  But the reason for my cleaning and tidying up was that someone was meant to be coming round – now I know she originally wanted to come last Sunday and we couldn’t make it as hubbie was working so we said to come this week instead, but we remembered whereas she obviously didn’t as she didn’t turn up!  It isn’t really a problem I suppose as I have a clean house now but I do find it a tad annoying.

It is cold here again in East Anglia in the UK so I can only presume our summer, what there was of it, is over and we are starting autumn early – so back out with the jumpers.  It doesn’t seem 5 minutes ago that I stopped wearing them:0(  I used to get a lot more wear out of my t-shirts when I was dancing!

Due to not dancing I saw this which made me chuckle and thought it seemed particularly relevant at the moment (and the first part is true for me):

I have just figured out why I’m overweight.  On the bottle of shampoo I use in the shower that runs down my body it says “for extra volume and body”.  So now I am going to start using washing-up liquid as it on that bottle it says “dissolves fat that is otherwise difficult to remove”.

I was trying to photograph some chokers yesterday but found the bathroom windowsill (my usual stupid but best photographic spot) was too narrow really so I had to adapt and use other places like the back of a cushion (the front was patterned) and an old coffee table in the conservatory – but one good thing I learnt is that I can actually take photos in the conservatory as long as the sun isn’t out (as it reflects all the roof lines in the gemstone).  Here is my usual photographic set-up with me hanging over the sink and bath at a very awkward angle to take the photos from above so they are in the light – sometimes with one leg in the air and sometimes with one foot in the bath to try and get the right angle to stop the window handle reflecting on the gemstone.  The bathmat is on the sink just in case I am careless enough to drop the pendant or the camera.  LOL - I really should find a better place.

Oh and while I am on about bathrooms, here is a cheeky picture I received a couple of days ago that you may enjoy:

I said one thing they missed was the Cloud, which would be the aroma in the room:)  But Clouds are new (well they are to me) so they may not have been around when they thought this one up.

Saturday, 27 August 2011

August Bank Holiday in a caravan

I was going to give the blog a miss today as it is holiday weekend but heck, with weather like this I may as well stay indoors.  I want to make some more chokers anyway as my stocks are getting low – why is it that you don’t sell a particular type of item for a while and then you seem to get a whole run on them – it’s not like the buyers know each other.  It happens so often now that I am used to it but I still find it strange.

It was so cold yesterday I had to warm up by putting jeans and a long sleeved top on.  It’s not much warmer today and it reminded me of the last time we went to a dance festival in our caravan at August Bank Holiday.  It had been lovely and warm at home all week and we had only taken a thin jacket each to use to walk over to the dances in the hall in the evenings, other than that we had only got dance clothes with shorts to wear in between sessions.  We were only an hour away from our home so not in a different part of the country so we expected the weather to be the same.  And it was still August which is still summer!  Well, how we stuck it out I don’t know, because it was soooo cold.  It was obviously ok in the hall when we were dancing but at lunch time and dinner time in between dancing sessions I was cold and when we went to bed - well you had never seen anything like it.  We were dressing in all the clothes we had to go to sleep so we were very multi-layered.  Our gas heater was old and you are not meant to sleep with it on so that didn’t help + it isn’t really much use anyway as the brilliant designers decided to spread the heat around the caravan by having vents around the room and into the bathroom.  Great idea – but a bad idea to take the piping for it under the caravan (outside).  Sometimes the air coming in through the heating vents was colder than the caravan itself.  Who on earth thought that was a good idea?!  Anyway, as cold as it is this weekend so far, I am very pleased to be in my own home and not over at the dance festival this year.  Well, apart from the fact that I still can’t go back to dancing yet because of my achilles tendonitis.  But I hate being cold so at least I am at home to be able to put warmer clothes on in the “heat” of our summer at the moment.  Ooh and there’s a flicker of sunshine so I am off to investigate.

Here’s a video that made me chuckle so I thought I would share it with you:

Friday, 26 August 2011

Changing Times....Retro Look

I have another riddle for you today (answer at the end):

After chatting about how Christmas has changed yesterday it got me thinking.  It’s funny how trends change as well.  When I think back all those years to the type of jewellery I was making when I first started, through all the different types of items I have been making and up to the current trend which, in my case, seems to be for the plainer type of jewellery with either very few or no beads but just a gemstone hanging on a necklace cord or choker.  I still like to make the other items but we have to go with the flow and have for sale what people currently want to buy.  Personally I love the natural gemstone look as I have a house full of crystals and love the energy they give off and their healing properties.  I use them in healing too.  So working with them to make jewellery is brilliant.  I also love the difference in all of the markings on them – all so natural and each one is so different.  Well, with exceptions ones like Rose Quartz and Lapis Lazuli etc. that all still have different markings but in most cases you would probably need a magnifying glass to be able to tell the difference.  So with those types of crystals it is the size and shape of them that makes them different.

It is not that I am that old but so many fashions in clothes have moved along and then come back round again.  Usually, annoyingly in a slightly different form from the original so that your old skirt from 20 years ago looks similar to the current ones but still looks different as they use the main style and then change it a bit or the material has improved these days.  Leggings for instance – I remember wearing them but when we wore them they didn’t use lycra or elastane in them so they ended up being baggy around the knees after wearing them for half an hour.  So things move on and change, although there is now the Retro image so if you have got any clothes left that have “come round again” you can still wear them (if you can still fit in them).  How many of us hold on to something because we loved wearing it and then, low and behold, the fashion comes round again and we jump at the chance of wearing that favourite item again – but when we finally find it after an afternoon of rummaging in the attic and get it out to wear, we find we just can’t fit into it any more.  I know a lot of you slimmies out there wont be having this problem but there are an awful lot of us who aren’t the size we were even a few years ago yet alone “before kids”.  I am a hoarder but have reluctantly let some things go as I have realised that I will be unlikely to ever fit into them again and so it is silly to hold on to them “just in case”, because if that is ever going to happen I could buy other clothes and not need to rummage in my wardrobe for my old clothes – in fact I would probably be celebrating by buying lots more.  Meanwhile having a whole spare wardrobe of clothes I can no longer fit in seems a stupid waste of space.

And the answer to the riddle is:
Pour the juice from the second glass into the fifth.
I bet you knew that, didn’t you.  It is one that I am proud to say I did get right.

Thursday, 25 August 2011

Christmas earlier and earlier

I said I would post another riddle yesterday but then I decided to post the blog about Facebook basics so here is the riddle today (answer at the end).

I realised today that everyone seems to be promoting things for Christmas and realised that now I am selling online I need to think in that direction as well.  It just seems too early to be thinking of Christmas when it is still summer.  I know in the US they have Christmas shops selling decorations all year round but here in England we only tend to think of it when Autumn arrives.  When I was young (yes, I know, that was a long time ago), Christmas things only arrived in shops and supermarkets in November.  Nowadays they start selling Christmas things in September after the children go back to school and the leaves start to fall off the trees.  This seems normal, as thinking of Christmas and roaring fires with family sitting round doesn’t seem quite right when you are sitting sunbathing in the garden – yes I know, chance would be a fine thing this summer.  But it just seems too early to be thinking of Christmas presents yet.  I know we all occasionally see something early in the year that we think would be a great gift for someone and so buy it and put it away until Christmas.  But then 90% of the time we forget we have bought it by November and end up buying that person something else.  Still at least we have their birthday present ready when we come across the present in January and kick ourselves for not remembering.

This year, being on the other side of the fence, as it were, I need to focus on promoting my jewellery for Christmas I suppose.  I need to start thinking like a professional seller and make the most of the opportunity.  I have a Summer Sale on at the moment – maybe I should have promoted in as a Early Christmas Sale.  I did actually see things promoted in July as a “Christmas in July Sale” but this must be a US custom as I had not heard about it before and it was too late to join in when I realised, as I had only been selling online then for a month so it was (and still is) all very new to me.  With the economy as it is will people be buying sooner to spread the cost or last minute as they haven’t the money earlier to think about it.  Will presents be smaller (or should I say cheaper) as it has all got totally out of hand these days in how much everyone feels they have to spend on presents.  Back to the “old days”, well even 30 years ago, I am sure people didn’t feel the need to spend the same percentage of their wage on presents as they do today.  Do we feel we need to “keep up with the Joneses” and buy high priced presents because we feel we would look bad if we didn’t?  Personally I feel we should all go back to buying cheaper presents as it has all got totally out of hand and there are so many financial problems for people in January and February when they can’t afford to pay their credit card statements.  The trouble is that no-one wants to look “cheap” by not buying for “Mary” the type of item Mary would expect and would be giving them.  In truth, Mary would probably be more than happy to tone down the cost and quality of the present as she can’t afford it either.  How did we all let these presents creep up and up to spending on this scale.  Most of us aren’t particularly pleased with the presents we receive either so it seems a big waste in the current economy.  I have personally known of people who can’t afford to eat properly or heat their houses enough in February / March because they have overspent on presents at Christmas, and as they have just added it all to their credit cards it doesn’t “hit home” until the January statement arrives on the doormat.  I think we should do a nationwide “Save the Economy and Spend Less on Presents This Christmas” so that everyone joins in and receivers don’t feels it is personal.

The answer to the riddle is: 
All the other card players were women.  
I bet you are kicking yourself now.  I didn’t guess right either!  If you got it right, let me know J  If you didn’t, let me know what you thought.  I thought he had his name on his jacket or on a tattoo.

Wednesday, 24 August 2011

5 points on How to Understand Facebook Basics.

Usernames, Tagging and Liking.

I gave a few pointers in another blog a few days ago about business pages but here are some basic queries answered.  If you are new to Facebook you may want to see those earlier blogs as well after you have read this one:

1. Register Your Username  Get your own URL (website username) for your personal page.  You can now get a username for your own page as well as a business page, so get yours while there is one available close to your name, for instance mine is  This is very useful if you want to add it to any paperwork or a website as you have your own URL (rather than my messy LinkedIn username – see below - this is typical of what your Facebook username looks like now if you don’t register it.  It is FREE, so take advantage of it.  Go to and follow the instructions.

2. Register Your Business Username  Get your own URL for your business page when you have reached 25 Fans (which is another name for Likes on business pages).   But first see “5.Choosing A Username” below.  Once again go to when you have at least 25 Fans on your business page.  It seems a lot of Fans to be able to get but it doesn’t take long if you ask your family and friends to “Like” your page.  It is best to give them a direct link to your page and tell them to click the Like button at the top of your page, as it is surprising how many people just think you have to just click Like in the comments section (which is actually Liking the comment and NOT your business page).  When on your business page copy the www bit at the top of your page and paste it to a message to send them and ask them to go to the page and click the Like button by your page name at the top.   This then registers and show how many Likes (Fans) you have (half way down on the left) where it says the number above “people like this”

3. Tagging  This can only be used when you have registered your username and is a useful direct link to your page.  A tag (or tagging) is when you put @ followed by your name or business name (no space after the @ sign).  Therefore mine is @pendant-heaven.  As you type the first couple of letters a drop-down box will appear and you click into your name.  Type more letters if your name isn’t showing straight away.  For instance I have to type @pe usually to see my name and sometimes @pen.  When it appears in the post it doesn’t have the @ sign but just your name which will turn blue after you have sent the post.  This means anyone can click directly into that name which will then take them to your page.  If you see a blue name like that in any post just click it and it will take you direct to their page.  This is very useful if you see someone or a page you may be interested in as you can go direct to them. 

4. Liking Pages  You will need to Like another business page from your Personal Page for it to count as a Like (Fan) on their page – Likes from business pages are not counted. 
The same goes for you – if you want a Like to add a count on your business page make sure your friend (or whoever) Likes your page from their Personal Page, otherwise it wont add to your Fan count – this is especially important when you are new and want to get to that magic 25 to get your own URL.

5. Choosing a Username  A point here about choosing your URL – you cannot change it once you have picked it, so think carefully while waiting for those 25 Fans and make sure you pick a name you definitely want and will want to keep.  It is best to always choose a memorable name for a business and not something that is just initials as no-one can ever remember them, for instance I could have chosen S.J. Jewellery.  It is probably best to not just make up a weird unmemorable name like Flixonatic as again people will forget it.  I am not saying mine is a good name but hopefully it is more memorable than some.  The only problem I have found is that I chose a name with a hyphen in it when I opened my ArtFire studio, which is absolutely fine on there, but when I got to registering the name on Facebook, Twitter, Blogger etc. I had to use multiple variations, as a hyphen couldn’t be used on all of them.  Some only allow a dot, some nothing at all to separate the words which ended up a bit confusing.  So, as you can see, this is how mine ended up on all the different sites:

Kaboodle:               pendantheaven

You can see that there is a lot to be said for either using one word for a name, or if you choose 2 or more words it would probably be best to just separate them out by adding the capital letters at the beginning of each word (as in my Twitter name) which I presume would then be quite universal in all of them.  And no, the reason I didn’t do that myself is because I didn’t realise until after I had been using ArtFire for a while and then joined Facebook that it would cause a problem, so it was too late by then.  But you have the chance to learn by my mistake J

Oh and did you know that if you click Facebook (top left) or Home (top right) it will take you back to your Home page (or wall).

I will be adding another Facebook help blog soon so if you don’t want to miss it become one of my followers.

Tuesday, 23 August 2011

What a slip up....

Well today I am feeling sorry for myself as I had a fall yesterday and have a painful ankle (come on everybody – say aah).  I can’t believe how stupid it was too – but isn’t that always the case when you look back.  We sometimes walk the dogs along this particular track at the side of a field and I know full well from in the winter when there wasn’t any undergrowth that there is an 8” drop into the field beside the path and the path is narrow.  I was especially aware of it and was always very careful because I have had Achilles Tendonitis in both legs for 18 months now since I hurt them while dancing on a slippery dance floor and one leg is better while the other one is nearly better.  So I can’t believe that I fell and hurt the worst leg and on a path that I knew was dangerous!!!  I was desperately hoping to get back to dancing in September after my visit to the consultant at the hospital too. 

Aren’t these things always the stupidest little thing that you know you shouldn’t have done but did anyway.  Too late when you have done it but you always look back after an injury and think “I knew I shouldn’t have reached that high / tried to jump over that / got under there” etc. etc.  Even when you do injure yourself you never know the best thing to do – carry on as best you can as normal, rest the injured part, put heat on it, put ice on it.  I learnt too late that I should have stopped dancing when my first Achilles started hurting instead of carrying on dancing and not only making it worse but affecting the other leg as well.  Even then I should have rested it for a while but as I loved going dancing so much I just kept dancing through the pain until I couldn’t any longer and had to stop dancing altogether a year ago.  How silly was that!!!  For the sake of not dancing for the rest of the evening or even a few weeks, I then had to stop for over a year.  The so-called rules for these things always seem to be changing as well (as fast as what they say we should and shouldn’t eat).  It wasn’t so many years ago that if you damaged your back they got you to lay on the floor or put a board under your mattress and stay there until it was better.  Now they say to take painkillers and carry on as normal because the last thing you should do is lay still and definitely not on a board or the floor.

This little gem seemed particularly significant under the circumstances:


1.     Open a new file on your PC.
2.     Name it “Housework”.
3.     Send it to the Recycle Bin.
4.     Empty the Recycle Bin.
5.     Your PC will ask you “Are you sure you want to delete Housework permanently?”
6.     Calmly answer “Yes” and press mouse button firmly.

Monday, 22 August 2011

Missing summer, promoting items

Here is a little riddle for you – answer at the end.

It’s another typical English summer day – tempting me with patches of blue sky but haunting me with white fluffy clouds.  As I sit here in the office with the blinds slanting because the light gets on the computer I notice that it is bright and sunny outside, so I make a conscious effort to think that as soon as I have finished this I will go and sit outside with a coffee (or a lolly) and a magazine so that I don’t miss the few sunny days we get here in the UK.  But what happens! – as soon as I finish what I am doing and finally get downstairs and out to the garden – yes, you have it – the clouds have come over again and the breeze is too cold to want to stay outside.  So up I go with my coffee and spend another day in the office trying to make sure I have covered most of the bases in how to sell my pendants on ArtFire, instead of ebay who are eating up my profit in fees + more.  It seems stupid to keep paying so much to ebay but I need to as that is where I am selling the most pendants at the moment.  I obviously jump at the chance when it is free listing weekends (like this one just gone) but at other times the relisting fees for the ones that didn’t sell use up all the profit of the ones that did sell. 

I am just keeping my fingers crossed that my ArtFire studio takes off and I can drop the whole ebay scenario.  But to do that I need to make sure that I am “crossing all my T’s and dotting all my I’s” as they say with all this social media stuff.  So I am trying to get used to remembering to promote all my newly listed items on Facebook, Twitter, Google+ etc. as well as using all the Bookmarking sites which all seem weird and strange in how they all work differently.  I have now got the hang of StumbleUpon but although I use Kaboodle and Digg I am not quite sure how they work.  And as for Pinterest , +1 and Delicious, I have no idea if they work or if anyone can actually even see my additions to there (or maybe I am totally wasting my time with them).  I only wish I knew. 

All the articles I have read say to engage your customers – well, I have tried.  I have asked them to let me know which type of photos they preferred – on a contrasting background or just with no background at all – I only got 2 responses – 2 for plain and 3 for background (and one of those responses came from a close friend).  I had one pendant that had well over 600 viewings whereas the next highest was just under 300 viewings so asked if anyone had any ideas why that happenend – not that I was expecting much response to that question but the only answers I got were from 2 friends.  I asked about the new layout on ArtFire as well but no response again.  I wanted to ask about peoples preferences as to whether they preferred the more beaded necklaces that I used to make or the ones that seem to be more popular now which are the plain ones with just a singe drop gemstone.  I feel this is cheating as a jewellery-maker but you have to go with the flow and that seems to be the current trend.  But as everyone has different ideas on what they like anyway I will gradually add some more beaded items now I have my studio so they can sit there to see if they sell.  I will add some earring and bracelets occasionally again now as well now I have over 160 pendants listed on there.

Here’s your answer to the riddle:
The last person took the basket with the egg in it.

Sunday, 21 August 2011

Facebook messages and Facebook Group emails

I was noticing recently how the Facebook messages on my personal wall have changed so much since I first started on there a couple of months ago.  Well, what I should say really is that the wall is filled up with different types of messages now.  When I first started I had lots of messages about what people were going to have for dinner and what they were doing today type messages (!!!) and now I can hardly see those messages in amongst all the adverts that I have adorning my wall from other people who I have Liked along the way.  If I have been away from the computer for a few hours (which doesn't happen often enough really) then it takes me quite a while to scan down all the messages that have been posted on my wall to see if there is anything reasonably important.  Hopefully important messages from friends come via the old fashioned telephone or mobile, if not by email or direct message on FB, but it is surprising how everyone just expects you to read everything they put on their wall which then ends up on your own wall.  

Why is it that any messages from Groups you have joined come through on your main email address rather than your own personal one.  Not only does hubby find it irritating to see loads of them on the main email page but I do wonder how anyone who picks up messages on their mobile phone can access these messages at all?  I don't use my mobile for emails or the internet but if I did then I am sure I would only add my personal email address to it and not the "home" email address as well.  As you can only access your emails from one place (well on Virgin Media anyway) then if I used a laptop and had them sent there, then I wouldn't pick the home emails up either.  Considering the correct email address is in Properties, is it only Virgin that do it this way or do you all have the same problem???  I would love to know, so please add a comment if you are in any Groups on Facebook.

I found this hilarious and thought I would share it with you to brighten up your day:

Saturday, 20 August 2011

Forgetting - where has it gone...?

I wanted to share this with you today as I received it by email and OMG it is so ME – have I got that old that I now fall into the old-and-past-it category that all these age related email refer to? 

Forgetter Be Forgotten?
My forgetter's getting better,
But my rememberer is broke
To you that may seem funny
But, to me, that is no joke

For when I'm 'here' I'm wondering
If I really should be 'there'
And, when I try to think it through,
I haven't got a prayer!

Oft times I walk into a room,
Say 'what am I here for?'
I wrack my brain, but all in vain!
A zero, is my score.

At times I put something away
Where it is safe, but, Gee!
The person it is safest from
Is, generally, me!

When shopping I may see someone,
Say 'Hi' and have a chat,
Then, when the person walks away
I ask myself, 'who the hell was that?

Yes, my forgetter's getting better
While my rememberer is broke,
And it's driving me plumb crazy
And that isn't any joke.
It is particularly relevant in that I spend well over an hour yesterday altogether trying to find a tarot book as I wanted to refer to something in it.   I had moved it a while ago from where it had been kept for a couple of years into a new place that I would not forget, as it would be separate from my other tarot books!!!  You know - so it would be handy, hmm!   Definitely the wrong thing to do – I knew where it was kept for all that time and that is stored in my memory.  I know where my other tarot books are kept too.  But the one I wanted – a complete blank!  But of course if I hadn’t stupidly decided to keep this one in a different (more accessible!!!) place it would be ok but now it is totally lost.

We moved to this house over 6 years ago and I still wonder where certain things are and yet I can remember exactly where they were in the old house – isn’t that stupid.  The main trouble is that I downsized to this house so things are in more condensed spaces.  Bookshelves with my bear collection sitting in front of the books and tarot decks for instance, so finding any reference books is a bit of a task but as space is limited then doubling some things up is the only option to make the most of the space.  Why can I remember exactly where things were in the old house – is it because I was younger then?   Or is it because when something comes new into the house you find a home for it so you remember, but after moving it a few times your brain becomes cloudy and disorientated.  Any comments upon your experiences will be great so I don’t feel it is just me L

Friday, 19 August 2011

Do you only feel a day has been good if you finish something...?

I have spent the afternoon in the sunshine catching up on some paperwork that I needed to read.  Why is it that if we take time out like this that we feel guilty for doing so ??  We don’t get too many sunny days – well certainly not this year – so a few hours fresh air should do us good.  But, I don’t know about you, but my days are only measured as good days if I feel I have actually achieved something.  If I flit from project to computer, to housework, to making something, to cooking dinner etc. etc. I don’t feel that I have had a good day.  But if I finish something or better still do something from start to finish, then I feel happy and complete in the sense that I have achieved something and had a good day.  On other days I can be working and doing more for a lot longer but, because the jobs were not actually completed, then I get no satisfaction from them.   But if I clear a surface or tidy a room then I feel all warm and chuffed (not that it happens often as I am a clutterbuck).

Today I realised, rather stupidly and rather belatedly, that the pendants I had listed in my ArtFire studio had some silly prices in the listings for the additional choice necklaces.  I had originally thought I had covered both bases by listing the necklace choices in GBP as well as USD.  What I hadn’t realised (and should have if I had bothered to check a long time ago) is that somehow ArtFire changes all the prices shown and not just the main one for the checkout.  So my GBP prices were classed as USD prices and changed to GBP which completely mucked them all up as there were now 2 different prices for each item and both saying GBP.  LOL – are you following this so far?  Anyway, back to the point – I now have to copy and paste new information in all the items (about 170 so far!).  Talk about causing work for myself.  I also need to change some of the really bad photos that I started out with on the earlier listings before I discovered that photo editing could brighten the pendants back to normal.  Jobs like this will take ages and give no job satisfaction at all – although I will obviously be very relieved when I have finished it – but it will take me a few days between other jobs.  Do you only feel you have had a good day when you have achieved something or finished something or is it just me???  I would love to hear your comments.

Wednesday, 17 August 2011

Does your long hair get stuck under your arms...?

I went to my hairdresser yesterday and had about 4” cut off my hair that was getting really long.  I haven’t had it so long since I was a teenager - well early twenties I think I changed to shorter hair.  I really don’t know how you ladies with longer hair get on but I kept finding it getting caught under my arm when I went to turn my head.  Doesn’t that happen to anyone else or is it just me?  I don’t ever remember that happening when I was younger but maybe it wasn’t so long then as I thought it was.  Maybe it doesn’t hang the same when you have thicker hair but mine is very fine and I kept finding that as I turned my head I was sometimes having to release my hair from where it was trapped under my arm as it would stop my head turning.  The same when bending my head forward to read anything when sitting watching tv.  Maybe it is something you get so used to you don’t think of it after a while as it becomes normal but I found it a bit annoying so off it came yesterday in a too-late-to-change-my-mind pile on the floor.  Now it is shoulder length again and swings as I move my head – and I wont keep dipping it in my dinner!

Does anyone actually ever like their hair?  I do wonder if there is anyone out there who does – well females anyway – who actually really love their hair.  If it is curly they want it straight, if it is dark they want it light and if it is thick they want it fine + all the reverse scenarios of that as well.  Are we ever satisfied with what we are given naturally?  I know there is always the big thing about everyone wanting to look like models and whether they are or not a good representation (especially when all the photos we actually see of them are rarely natural but airbrushed, colour enhanced etc. etc., but we always want to change some things about ourselves and often quite a list of things!!!  If they can do this with a cat on a photo editing programme we can all get then think what the professional photographers use.  Would we actually recognise a female celebrity in the street I wonder.  Mind you, I think I ought to get practising on one of those photo editing programmes as I hate any photos of me and I may even be able to change my photo to one that I would be prepared to let anyone see – even if my best friends didn’t recognise me in the photo after all the editing.    

Tuesday, 16 August 2011

How it started...

Today I was thinking back to when I first started making jewellery when my kids were babes - ooh how long ago that seems now!  I really don’t know how or why I started doing it (making jewellery that is – not having babies) but somehow, probably due to my lifelong love of pretty things and especially with jewellery, I got involved with making and selling it.   I can remember going off to the suppliers and buying the things I needed to start making them – in those days I was buying cabochons to glue on to settings to make all types of jewellery and I used cameo type picture ones as well as gemstone ones.  In my spare time – do you get “spare time” when you have 2 youngsters to look after??? – I would sit at the kitchen table with all my equipment and spend hours choosing and glueing.  The windowsill used to be adorned with bracelets etc. while the glue dried and I had to keep an eye on them so that they didn’t slip off the settings a bit or they would end up lopsided.  I suppose it must have been partly my release from looking after the children all day but also my attempt at being a working mum.  I started selling them party-plan style to friends and it went for there really.  But then when my youngest at the time started school and I started working again, my jewellery making went back to just being an occasionally hobby, mainly just making things for me. 

I also used to design weird and wacky jewellery to wear as well – especially pendants and necklaces.  Oddly enough I used to sometimes change clothes to be weird and unusual as well but somewhere along the line I got to hate sewing but still loved jewellery making.  I have now managed to gain a whole box full of things that need mending and do wonder that if they have lived in the box for so many months (if not more than a year) if I really need to bother mending them anyway as I (or we) obviously haven’t missed them!  Shall I sneak them into the bin instead???  It would certainly make more space if I did that and who would notice?  I know I am absolutely terrible about getting rid of things – I am a terrible hoarder.  I have forgotten what is actually in the “to be mended” box but if I took the things out to throw away I know I wouldn’t bring myself to do it if I saw them, so the only way I could possibly do it is if I just put the box in the bin without looking.  Some of the mending would only be a 5 minute job as well but it is just the thought of getting the sewing box out!!!  Do you hate doing certain jobs and sidetrack them as much as possible?? Or is it just me?

Monday, 15 August 2011

My Blackberry & Apple Cake Easy Recipe

This is the 2nd cake recipe I just made up as I went along that I promised to blog.  If you saw my Banana Cake recipe I said I would try to work out how much is actually in 1/3 of a Chinese Chow Mein carton to give a more accurate recipe.  Sorry, for those who didn’t read the other blog, my blackberry and apple was just stored in the take-away tub and I just tipped about 1/3 of it in the cake mix so had no idea how much I used at the time.  As this was discussed only a couple of hours after I made it, I took a quick photo before it all disappeared – not a good or thought-out photo as I had only expected to send it to my friend Julie but I have included it here anyway.

You can also use most other fruits instead I presume – and most definitely stewed apples on their own if you don’t like the blackberry pips.  I know I am probably lucky but I make lots of recipes up as I go along – especially for dinners so if it was a particularly tasty stir fry / casserole etc. I do try to write it down afterwards so I can try to replicate it, as I would never remember what I had put in by the time I came to make it again.  I also like to make things easy – some great tasty meals are just so quick and easy to make.  I love tasty meals rather than plain ones so I love to experiment and I just add things as I go, especially different herbs and spices.  Whenever I have ever looked at recipes, there are ingredients involved that I just don’t have so I have had to improvise anyway.  But if the recipe looks too complicated and long-winded I just can’t be bothered.   Anyway back to the cake recipe so here it is.  It is almost a sponge mix really so you could make it in 2 sponge tins if you wanted.  It couldn’t be any simpler so give it a try. 


Put oven on (fan 160 degrees) – medium heat
In a mixing bowl put in all the ingredients and mix together, then put in a tin and cook for about an hour. I put some castor sugar on the top for the last 10 mins and foil loosely over the top to stop it burning at that point. It's ready when the knife comes out clean. 
For the metric cooks – 8oz is about 250grams.

6 oz castor sugar
6 oz soft butter
6 oz self raising flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
3 XL eggs
1 dessert spoon Mixed Spice
1 dessert spoon Cinnamon
10oz (approx.) Stewed blackberry and apple

This is almost my foolproof sponge recipe really except I made it into a cake.  The sponge mix is just the same apart from I split it into 2 sponge tins and cook it a bit hotter but for only half an hour.  I vary the taste of the sponge by just adding different things - coconut, lemon juice, chocolate powder, ground almonds & almond essence, coffee, walnuts, mixed fruit, cherries etc.  Favourites seem to be coffee & walnut, cherry & coconut, lemon & coconut, almond.  Absolutely foolproof.   Just follow the 6/6/6/1/3 ingredients rule or for a thicker sponge 8/8/8/1.5/4.  Unless it is a Victoria Sponge I usually put flavoured butter icing in the middle and flavoured normal icing on top and basically decorate with whatever is in the cake – walnuts, cherries etc.  With lemon cake I often spread lemon curd in the middle as well.  Another popular recipe I have is for Date Loaf – I’ll post that another day.

If you try either of these recipes I hope you enjoy them – and remember if they don’t come out quite right just use them as a dessert with custardJ

Sunday, 14 August 2011

Do we pay attention?

This was forwarded to me in an email so I have no idea of its origin and is probably old, but it amused me so I just couldn’t resist using it in my blog as I couldn’t condense it enough for my Facebook wall:

This is the best example for paying attention that I have ever  heard.

First-year students at the Vet School were attending their first anatomy class with a real dead cow. They all gathered around the surgery table with the body covered with a white sheet.

The professor started the class by telling them, "In Veterinary medicine it is necessary to have  two important qualities as a doctor. The first is that you not be disgusted by anything involving the animal's body." For an example, the professor pulled back the sheet, stuck his finger in the butt
of the cow, withdrew it, and stuck his finger in his mouth. "Go ahead and do the same thing," he told his students.

The students freaked out, hesitated for several minutes, but eventually took turns sticking a finger in the butt of the dead cow and sucking on it.

When everyone finished, the Professor looked at them and said, "The second most important quality is observation. I stuck in my middle finger and sucked on my index finger.

Now learn to pay attention.

It is so very true – we think we are paying attention but are we?  We are not really watching or listening that closely all the time so very often and miss important things.  LOL - and I am not just talking about our men here – although that is a very good point as they have it down to a fine art.  They have even learnt to mutter or grunt in the right places without listening to a word you have said – do we have a slight pause or an intonation in our voice that their subconscious knows is the point to produce an “mmm” as is they are really listening?  And do we know if they have heard us or not – no chance. 

Back to people in general paying attention – I know I for one would make a terrible witness.  I never notice anything, probably due to being shy, but I don’t actually “see” people when I am out shopping or whatever, as I have my mind on what I am doing.  If something happened very fast and the police asked me to describe the person afterwards I am pretty certain I wouldn’t be able to give them much information.

It gets worse as people get older – how many times do your hear the same stories from your older friends?  How many times do they watch the same television programme and not realise they have seen it before?  So would you say they are paying attention?  The good thing about it for them is the fact that there are new television programmes all the time so they don’t get fed up with there being nothing to watch like the rest of us.

But I wonder how many of us would actually get caught out in the same way as the students in the vets story?