Apr 22, 2014

Free Spirits of the Wild West Jewelry Challenge -- We CAN Save the Beautiful American Mustangs!

 Lori Anderson's The Bead Soup Cafe  regularly hosts a jewelry making challenge for artists with or without blogs, called the "Blogger/Non-Blogger Challenge." Each challenge is hosted by the winner of the previous challenge. 

The 12th Blogger/Non-Blogger Challenge is currently on, and hostess Kelly Hosford Patterson did something very special this time around as she chose our photo inspiration and asked us to: 

Create in honor of the American Wild Mustangs, 
learn why the mustangs need our help,
and take action to create change.

"The heated debate continues over whether the wild horses are a native species or feral animals. It is a fact that horses once roamed these plains, though speculated the species became totally extinct. However, modern DNA testing shoes the horses of today are genetically equivalent to their allegedly extinct ancestors.

Why does the feral vs. wild issue matter? 

Because wild animals are designated a greater degree of protection than feral animals, which need to be controlled." 

In 1971, congress declared:
"the wild free roaming horses and burros are living symbols 
of the historic and pioneer spirit of the west; 
that they contribute to the diversity of life forms
within the nation and enrich the lives of the American people; 
and that these horses and burros are fast 
disappearing from the American scene."

Congress created the Bureau of Land Management 
to protect them, passing the:


However, since then, 270,000 horses have been removed from the plains via mass roundups by the Bureau of Land Management, the very agency appointed to protect them.

 The BLM uses helicopters to round up wild horses, chasing them for miles, forcing them to run at full sprint for hours. Foals can't keep up with their families & are left behind. On site, herds are separated from each other, horses are crammed together, many are injured, many become ill. 

There are currently 50,000 horses in U.S. holding pens.

So rangers, a very wealthy and influential social group,
 can graze their cattle on the land instead --
despite their cattle outnumbering the wild horses 50 to 1.

Sound odd? Sound wrong?
More reasons for round-ups:

*So horses can be purchased by rangers for as little as $10 a head.

*So horses bought at $10 a head can then be quietly, easily,  
and profitably sold to slaughterhouses. For example, horses are sold to supply French gourmet hamburgers (called chavel) --as well as other, international food industry slaughterhouses.

*So their wild spirit may be broken & domesticated for ranchers. 

*So horses can be sold to United States science (just as many cats & dogs in animal control kill facilities quietly are).

Ready to ACT?
Ready to create change for these majestic creatures,
right now, easily & quickly? 

This is intense stuff, so let's stay hopeful. Let's know our power. Remember, the moment something feels awful, a desire for something better is born. Desire is a rocket! Knowing what we want, creates it. Never underestimate the power of your intention in our breathtaking, miraculous universe. Know your strength. Ask, and it is given. Desire, and it is so. Now, we only have to let it in. The universe has done all the arranging. Let's open the doors together, shall we? 

Let's GO! 
When my children were little, I taught them to know 
and speak out loud these very important words:

"I invoke all my constitutional rights,
and I wave nothing."

Let's use our American rights to turn this around!
We say what happens in our great country. 
The Bureau of Land Management is our agency to guide.
Let's use our power to help the wild horses, to remedy this.
Below are two petitions that will create needed change.
"We can turn this around" -- ProtectMustangs.org

Defund and Stop the Wild Horse & Burro Roundups

This petition has 13,400 signatures, needing only 1,600 more.
An excerpt from the petition reads:

"Wild horses are a returned-native species to America. Rounding up federally protected wild horses and burros has been documented as cruel. Warehousing them for decades is fiscally irresponsible. Clearing mustangs and burros off public land--for industrialization, fracking, grazing and the water grab--goes against the 1971 Free Roaming Wild Horse and Burro Act put in place to protect the living legends of the American West. They must never go to slaughter. We request you defund and stop the roundups immediately."

"I invoke all my constitutional rights,
and I wave nothing."

Ending roundups and returning the native wild horses and burros to the plains reverses desertification,
 reduces fuel for wildfires, creates biodiversity on public land -- while living with their families in freedom. 

Urgent: Grant a 10-year moratorium on wild horse roundups for recovery and scientific studies

This petition has 13,400 signatures, needing only 1,600 more. 
An excerpt from the petition reads:

"We need scientific studies on population, migration, holistic land management and more before the government continues to roundup or tamper with America's equine herds using permanent/temporary sterilization or kill them. We support wild horse and burro recovery on public land.
Right now the feds are managing our indigenous wild horses and burros to extinction. They want to aggressively sterilize the herds. There is "no evidence" of overpopulation according to the National Academy of Sciences 2013 report.
Together we can turn this around."

"I invoke all my constitutional rights,
and I wave nothing."

 Brass bird by THEA Elements, bail by Sharyl McMillian-Nelson, enameled focal by Get Your Bead On, 
brass & copper chain, ceramics, silk, jasper, smoky quartz rondelles. The necklace bail represents a saddle; the enameled focal represents an animal control dog tag, the roundups; chains are captivity, the smooth jasper is the free, unsaddled backs of the wild horses & burros, the bronze bird SETS THEM FREE and the quartz magnify their freedom and sends the energy for change out!

Go to the Bead Soup Cafe to comment on my Free Spirits of The Wild West Jewelry Design. 

I will donate $2 to ProtecMustangs.org for each comment on my Bead Soup Cafe photo or the album that you helped the mustangs. You can also comment here on this blog post. 

Comment on my design that you signed the petitions, blogged, shared Kelly's blog post on your FB page or profile, shared my blog post on FB, linked blog posts, bought a t-shirt, wrote your congressperson, or donated to ProtectMustangs.org. Please, do not vote ("votes" are comments that say "my vote or my favorite"); I want to hear how you took action, even if you simply say a prayer. I believe that makes a difference, too! For each comment, I'll donate to ProtectMustangs.org. And please, read Kelly's blog for many more great ways to help! She did an amazing job with resources for change.  

And, you can do more ...
Where a T-shirt to educate people 

Get your Stop the Roundups T-shirt 

To support the work of PROTECTMUSTANGS.ORG and get the word out, purchase a t-shirt for $18.00. All proceeds go to protecting the wild horses and burros of America. The T-shirt campaign ends soon, so  gallop to purchase your Stop the Roundups T-shirt here. You can also follow and read the PROTECTMUSTANG.ORG blog. 


Once more people know this is happening, 
we'll get it right! Change is happening now. 

Confirmed Victory!

Save Wild Horses From Slaughter

This successful, completed petition shows the change possible. You can read the petition for inspiration and hope, and learn about the 11 year old girl who started it. An excerpt from the petition, "Save Wild Horses From Slaughter" reads:

"After more than 130,000 people signed my petition, Ken Salazar announced changes to the way wild horses are sold, including a limit on the number of horses any one buyer can purchase in a six-month period and telling buyers that they could go to jail if they try to sell mustangs for slaughter."

Confirmed Victory!

Oh Captain, my Captain!

President Obama recently signed the Safeguard American Foods Export Act, temporarily shutting down US horse slaughter houses until the end of the year. Like the Facebook "S.A.F.E" (safeguard American Foods Export) page to stay in the herd with information as it develops.

Thank you, Kelly, for bringing this to our attention so we may create heaven on earth for all! 

Apr 20, 2014

BSBP8 Soups On! Winner of the Lima Beads Gift Cetificate

Thank you everyone for your lovely comments!

 I'll be giving away another gift certificate (... or two ;) with my BSBP8 jewelry reveal, so please join in the fun again for more party favors on May 3rd :) 
Hope to see you then! 

The winner of last Sunday's blog post comments for

is ...

The Color of Dreams

Enjoy your $20 gift certificate! :) 

Screenshot of random.org:

Apr 16, 2014

Spring Fever Design Challenge with THEa Elements, BlueberriBeads, and Smitten Beads

Welcome to the Spring Fever Challenge, co-hosted by Lesley Watt of The Gossiping GoddessCaroline Dewey of  BlueberriBeads, and Claire Braunbarth of Smitten Beads.  

Our challenge was to create with bead mixes made with art jewelry elements from each hostess. Participants each received beautiful ceramic layered flowers and coordinating beads by Lesley Watt (THEA Elements), lovely sari ribbon from Claire Braunbarth (Smitten Beads), and beads by Carolyn Dewey (BlueBerriBeads) featuring her beloved, quintessential ceramic birds. 

The bead mix I received is full of vibrant color! 

As I meditated on the happy colors, I began to relish the memories of blue, yellow and cream colorways from my life: my kitchen growing up with yellow checkered curtains, years spent happy, laughing with my sister as our mom chatted with us. I thought of childhood and nature, remembering my wild child hair that I was warned "would attract birds for a nest" -- haha! 
Oh, how I now love and cherish my memories and my bead mix. 

Spring has sprung!  

Here in Orlando, life is warm and lovely year round, 
yet spring brings even more lovely changes ...

the sun shines brightly, and each day is very warm

Our backyard fountains and pool comes to life 

Soft clouds gently dance in the sky

Sweet, clean ocean air breezes across the peninsula

Daily tropical afternoon showers bring rainbows

Everywhere flowers bloom and life gets growing

This week, the lunar eclipse was so magical, my family stayed up all night long to experience it! My daughter and grandson played outside in the middle of night. 


My grandson in the eerie light of the lunar eclipse

And I finished my jewelry, working as the sun and moon danced! 

THEa ELEMENTS Ceramic Flower Focal & Floral blue bead:

Rosary chain stations in brass with blue chalcedony rondelles and yellow AB crystal rondelles,
sunshine yellow ceramic round beads by THEa Elements accented with Swarovski sapphire bicones;
AND so excited to addvery special beads: orange yellow lampwork made by Lori Anderson! She gifted the rare beads to me in our Pantone swap, and I love how they perfectly reflect the sunset shades in Lesley's beautiful flower, as if always meant for this necklace. So uplifting and full of warmth!

Among her many talents, Lori Anderson of Pretty Things also makes lampwork beads! Isn't she incredible? I love the beads she gifted me, and they are wonderful in the spring necklace. Her lampwork in sunset, along with Lesley's yellow ceramics, look so pretty! I also added lampwork by SueBeads along with the blue ceramic bead in the clasp. 

In addition, I created coordinating earrings. I was delighted when some of my left over beautiful recycled glass discs gifted from my lovely BSBP6 partner, Mags Saari (see her blog! She is an AMAZING artist) coordinated with the pretty blue of Lesley's ceramic art beads! I added Swarovski bicones (from Margot Potter store :) in sunny yellow and sapphire, and the sunset AB rondelles. The wonderful gold triangle jump rings are from my beloved Windbent. 

 Blueberri Beads Ceramic Feather

Along with Caroline's popular and lovely "mummy and baby" birdies, I was given a feather.
Inspiration struck as I decided to celebrate the feather and design with unique carved bones recently given to me by Heather Richter, and faux carved bone beads by Nicole Welch. I added a little abstract feather by Scorched Earth at the clasp. So often in spring, my girls and i would begin camping, or gather with friends around campfires singing, "The Earth The Air The Fire the Water Returns Returns Returns Returns...." This necklace reminds me of earth in spring, drumming, celebrating mother, returning to each other.

Ceramic feather, bone, agate, faux bone, cotton ribbon, antique copper and brass.

In honor of the lunar eclipse, I made coordinating turtle earrings with crescent moons.
The turtles arrived in the mail as a surprise gift just in time to become lunar lovelies!

I added a little abstract leaf to the clasp - it looks like a smile! -- from Scorched Earth

With the birds, I created a Mother's Day pearl lariat necklace. I decided to use the sweet birds as charms, and made three beaded rondelles to add to the ceramic charms. I wasn't sure if i should keep the lariat simple with the mummy and baby, keeping two of my beaded beads for earrings, but I decided to create "fringe" instead. I like the effect. 

I strung freshwater pearls with pearlized blue seed bead spacers into a very long necklace; 
using the ceramic clasp by Pajado Art House, I made a lariat of pearls. The beaded beads (pattern by Datz Katz) were made to coordinate, as garden flowers for the sweet BlueberriBeads birds.

Smitten Beads Sari Silk Ribbon
With the sari ribbon, I was thrilled to create a soft, gentle necklace for a a seed bead
focal I created with The Color of Dreams bead. The blue of the silk and the purple lace
 look so pretty with the crystals and blue freshwater pearls.

I wanted to braid or arrange the ribbons in a brilliant way..
I tried to think of something clever, but I'm hoping I'll get new ideas
 today from our reveals! For now, they are soft against the lush focal.

Caroline Dewison - http://www.blueberribeads.co.uk 
Erin Prais – Hintz – http://treasures-found.blogspot.co.uk/
see what has sprung up! 

Thanks for looking!  

Apr 14, 2014

BSBP8: Soups On! Meet my Partner Bobbie Rafferty and See the Beads!

Bead Soup Blog Party 8 is underway and it's time to reveal the bead soups and introduce you to my fantastic and talented Bead Soup Party partner this year, Bobbie Rafferty of Beadsong Jewelry! 

What's a Bead Soup Blog Party? 

The Bead Soup Blog Parties are an international jewelry arts event, one of the largest bead swaps and design challenges in existence, with almost 500 jewelry designers and artists participating annually. The BSBParties are hosted by author and jewelry designer artist Lori Anderson, who pairs participants with her
 talents as an organizer extraordinaire. Participants then send their partners the finest beads to design with, or as Lori describes, "a Party Pack, something nice we would give our best friend" that includes:

::  A focal  ::
::  Some coordinating spacers or beads  ::
::  A special clasp (not just a lobster claw)  ::

Participants blog about the bead soups given and received, sharing info about their partners & their partner's jewelry and art, and last but not least, create jewelry with the beads exchanged. The jewelry designs made for the Party are revealed all at once, together in a grand event for one day (this year on May 3rd) as everyone visits each other's blogs (the "hop") to see all the jewelry created with the exchanged beads.

The Last Bead Soup Party? 

Lori has mentioned that this may be the last year for the Bead Soup Blog Parties as we know them, and thus I'm holding every part of this wonderful event dear to my heart. 

Lori shared that she may very well have to let the pairings, partnerships and bead swaps fall away from future Bead soup blog Parties. Thus I am cherishing every step of the process and appreciating all I can: the fun of making a new friend, the challenge of exchanging great beads, the process of photography and blog posting, and the excitement of creating with beads chosen by another artist. 

Whether this is the last BSBParty or simply the 8th in a long line of annual events, I'm relishing each step of the event. The Bead soup Parties are not just blog hops -- they transform the jewelry arts community. BSBParties create new connections, foster unique and empowering interactions, and manifest an abundance of beautiful beads and exceptionally outstanding jewelry art!

Muchas Gracias, Lori Anderson

Meet my Partner, Bobbie Rafferty of Beadsong Jewelry

This year I'm paired with the warm and lovely Bobbie Rafferty of Beadsong Jewelry. Bobbie immediately amazed me with her exquisite jewelry designs, especially those found on her website and gallery, featuring incredible beadwork and jewelry designs such as her free form peyote necklace, "Aphrodite, Queen of the Sea." Treat yourself to some gorgeous jewelry arts eye candy and visit her website, Beadsong Jewelry. You'll find an array of outstanding jewelry designs to delight as she works in bead weaving, stitching, wireworking, and stringing! 

"Aphrodite, Queen of the Sea" by Bobbie Rafferty, BeadSong Jewelry Gallery.

Bobbie is also the hostess of the whimsical yet infamous "Hat's Off Challenge" -- a blog hop celebrating the many styles and fab fashions of the hats of the Kentucky Derby! Bobbie had planned on making the popular challenge an annual event, but had to do some rescheduling when the timing was exactly that of this year's Bead Soup Blog Party 8. She plans on hosting the event again, however, so be sure to visit Beadsong Jewelry blog to sign up for email posts so you won't miss the next gala Kentucky Derby design event!  

Also, check out Bobbie's spring collection of jewelry designs as a Znet Design Team artist. She has several pieces published in Spring 2014 issue of Creative Spark, including an elegant "centerfold" with a colorway that will surprise you, starting on page 34. 

See Bobbie's Beautiful Spring Collection of Designs

 The Soups! 

What Bobbie Sent Me: 

First Course: A Pink Soup

An exquisite soup featuring an ethereal cherry quartz butterfly focal that took my breath away when I lay my eyes on it! Bobbie may not know this, but my eldest daughter passed on during my first Bead Soup Blog Party. She had been very ill and had lived such a rich full life -- however short in time, and although we didn't expect her death, I know with all my heart it is ok, she is still the beautiful amazing person she has always been -- all of herself and now more -- and is with us still. Death is not loss, but with open hearts full of love and appreciation, is a new way of being with those we love if we can feel Heaven on Earth with our hearts. 

The butterfly is the representation Beads of Courage uses for children who have passed on. So I will create in her honor with my beautiful butterfly.

As for the coordinating beads, they are stunning! A nostalsia colorway mix of Czech flowers and fabulous rondelles, soft and smoky in a rainbow of soft, irridescent colors. There are fantasy faceted fine quartz crystals too -- magical! And an abundant overflowing gift of cherry quartz faceted flat pears! In addition, marble and more Czech in soft sandy shades abound, as well as rich chocolate freshwater pearls, shimmering white stick pearls, and delicious faceted fire agate rounds! 
I am in heaven and love everything.

Overview of the Pink Soup Bobbie Rafferty sent me: Lusciousness! 

Second Course: A Blue Soup

Second course! This blue soup features a powerful talisman as its focal! The handcrafted lampwork mandala (artist unknown) is a "kaleidoscope mandala" and an amazing bead! Imagine the possibilities in design. Coordinating with the lampwork art focal are ceramic beads, pretty crystal rondelles in two sizes and shades, Czech beads galore: coins, druk rounds, pinch beads, ovals, and the special Czech color edition of green and blue rondelles. There is also a lovely lucite flower matching Bobbie's handmade sterling silver clasp (see the lovely silvers photo too). The special blue bead with "grates" is actually a vintage treasure! And to top it all, there are seed beads made of gemstones: azurite! The moment I saw these gem treasures, I knew exactly what to do with them! I'm excited! 

Overview of the Blue soup Bobbie Sent me (along with the silver treasures above!): Sophisticated 

Silver Findings! Including Handcrafted Sterling Silver clasps by Bobbie.

What I sent Bobbie:

First Course: A Pink Soup

Overview of the Pink Soup I sent Bobbie Rafferty. With gold and gold plated beads, artisan treasures, vintage & gems.

Second Course: A Blue Soup

Overview of the Blue Bead Soup I sent Bobbie Rafferty. It's full of artisan goodies, gems, & seed bead shapes galore! 

Isn't that amazing synchronicity? We created and exchanged two soups for each other and we both sent along a soup in pink and a soup in blue! 

Suppliers of  beads & findings for Bobbie: 

Handcrafted Artists of my soups for Bobbie: 

A Party Favor:

Comment on this post to be entered to win a $20 gift certificate to Lima Beads. Comment on our soups, visit Bobbie's gallery and comment here about your favorite design, or share the link in your comment to your Bead Soup blog Party soup reveal, and you'll be entered to win on Sunday, April 20th. I'll be using Random.org to pick the winner. Party on!