We have reached the “Dang I’m Tired” phase, where everything hurts and you keep trying to remember what you have already bought.  And not remembering very well.

We found some more glorious faceted stones, including a double strand of London Blue topaz that causes jaw-drop.  And we got more Tibetan prayer boxes.  And yet MORE turquoise, inlcuding some adorable hearts.

And we ate dinner with Loretta from the Alouette bead stores in Oklahoma.  And got back much later than we had expected due to a side trip looking for a Target that makes me think the Garmin has it in for us.  So last night we didn’t finish pricing till after 2AM, and I was just too freakin’ tired to take pictures. 

And we woke up late, and now have to go eat quick breakfast and go Shopping Again! 

PS – my feet hurt.  My back hurts.  Mary’s feet hurt.  Her back hurts.  That will be all.

Stone and chain day!

Happy Wednesday!  Today we picked up the clasps at yesterday’s show that we forgot to get, then went on a Stone hunt.  We got some FANTASTIC aquamarine, emeralds, and probably the most beautiful blue and green sapphire leaves on the planet:

Sapphire leaves and other lovelies

  Sorry, photography isn’t great.  We forgot to buy a background paper, and by the time I got to start on this, we were just a bit too tired to agonize over it.

Anyway, see those up in the center, the loop?  Those are the leaves.  Surrounded by tourmaline, beer quartz and smoky quartz.  And the magnificent greens on the right?  Chrome dyposide.  Yeah, really cool.

And turquoise, both Chinese and American.  In fact, we got some wonderful Sleeping Beauty, Bisbee, and Campo Frio strands.  


And then we got some new chain, in gunmetal, brass, and even a lovely rose gold!  And some torched copper and brass clasps and jump rings. 

And Michell, we got some glass.  JUST A FEW!!  Only one bag, really.  That will be split between the two Artful Bead stores, so you CAN NOT break my legs.  Mary admitted that it was mostly her fault that we bought some.  (Note:  Whispering “we need new glass…  we need new really cool glass!” all night long really worked.  She woke up this morning thinking she had slept badly, but willing to buy Czech glass beads!)

And because one vendor we specifically want to see isn’t going to be here until Saturday, we have to stay one more day.  I never thought I would be glad the hotel I stayed at had a laundry center for guests.  Otherwise it could be unpleasant. 

Tomorrow we go back  again to the same show, we only got half of one tent done, and there are two tents.  We’d better manage to go faster this time.  And breakfast will be at the Rap-chef Waffle House, where the cook came out last year and sang us a rap about “Momma’s in the kitchen eatin’ Jenny Craig.  I’m at the Wuffle House ” something something something.  Sorry, bad memory, we were laughing so hard we didn’t hear it all.

Flowers and clasps and lampwork

Wonderful resin flowers!  Great shapes, and colors, just look at a small sampling:

Lovely Resin Flowers
Lovely Resin Flowers

And we got some marvellous lampwork – like:

Amazing lampwork beads - ooooo
Amazing lampwork beads - ooo

And clasps like these:

Just a few of the new clasps
Just a few of the new clasps

And pendants made from fabric and beads like: 

Made with fabrics, ribbons, and beads
Made with fabrics, ribbons, and beads

And now it’s nearly 11, and we had sushi for dinner, and priced, and now Mary is watching something with ghosts and making fun of me.  harumph.

We’ve seen lots of old friends, like Ellie from Little Rock, and Tall Pam, and several vendors that we’ve known for years.  And now I have to log today’s purchases.
It rained tonight.  Rain, in Tucson.  Odd as heck.  More tomorrow.  

We’re there!

We arrived just after noon, checked into the hotel, and then hit the first show.  We got enameled charms and toggles like:

Enameled heart charms Which are entirely adorable.  We also got some other shapes and teeny keys!  And gears!

And Steel pendants stainless steel pendants!

And some really cool Tibetan beads like these:Tibetan Silver

and these:Tibetan Coral and Amber

And to make up for the Truly Awful dinner last night, we had a Truly Spectacular one tonight.  Really.  Best. Dinner. Ever.  (so far, anyway.)  And now I have to update the rest of the stuff and figure out what we spent.  Whee, huh?

And Lindsay?  I couldn’t find a single scarab.  Really.  Sorry.

On the road again

If you followed the tweets, you know that lunch was sausage on a stick. And that we were looking for dinner. Well, whatever it was that we ate in Van Horn was NOT dinner. Not even close. Maybe not even food. Just some food-like substances that we overpaid for.

So now we are in El Paso collapsing and looking for snacks. More tomorrow.

States of Transition

While getting ready for Tucson, having my usual multiple panic attack-y spin-in-circles-and-squeal-while-throwing-stuff-at-suitcases spasms, I figured out my problem.  (OK, maybe it’s not really The Only Problem, but it’s a pretty significant one.) 

I don’t mind being in new places, but actually travelling to them makes my head ache and turns me crabby.  It’s goingfrom one place to another that causes problems – the state of transition.  In car trips, I can convince myself that the car is actually a destination, so being in the car going from point A to point T (or somewhere in between) is tolerable.  I have books, knitting, beadwork, music, and a pillow for naps.  I’m not changing anything but outside scenery.

But plane trips require Xanax and 2 Bloody Marys per hour for the duration, and knitting, beadwork, and books.  An airplane can’t be the destination, (nobody in their right mind thinks sitting on an airliner is fun after the first 12 minutes) so the entire thing is a state of transition from one place to another.  And it doesn’t matter if it’s to Houston or Japan.  If I have to sit there listening to the engines whine without something to throw my brain out of gear, it takes 4 Bloody Marys per hour just to keep my rear in the seat and not clawing at the door.   I avoid long plane trips like the plague.  My husband travels for work, he collects millions of airmiles and I could go with him to any exotic place on the planet.  I went to Europe once over 20 years ago, and to Alaska in 2005.  (Alaksa was really a bit of a cheat, though.  We flew to Juneau and took a small ship cruise around the Inside Passage for two weeks.  Turns out that small ships are the same as cars – a destination of it’s own, with changing scenery.)  Coming home, my younger son and I both considered trying to find another way back to Texas that didn’t involve air travel.  That doesn’t work coming from Juneau, unfortunately.

Tomorrow morning we’re driving to Tucson as always.  The only states of transition are from my house to the car we’re driving, from the car to the hotel room in Tucson, and the reverse when we come home.  That should be doable, even at my most dithery. (I’m not sure if that’s a word, but it should be.)  And we’ll be there buying wonderful beads and stones and pendants and anything else Fabulous we can get our hands on.  And staying up late and laughing till we can’t catch our breath while pricing that day’s finds.  

And then we transition from Silly to Asleep. 

Later, peeps!

All moved, and Now with Twitter and Facebook!

Our website is all moved, tweaked, and all up and better again, and we have decided to make Tucson even more exciting now that that’s all done.

We will be tweeting from Tucson (or I will be, since I’m the only one with a texting phone) and you can follow us on http://twitter.com/artfulbead and track all the mayhem.  And we’ll be updating this blog every night.  We leave on Sunday and will start Shopping on Monday morning! 

We’re also (slowly, I admit) slipping our toes into the Facebook ocean, mostly by making incorrect assumptions and adding stuff and then deleting it because it was done poorly.  But you can find us at http://www.facebook.com/home.php?#/pages/Carrollton-TX/The-Artful-Bead-in-Carrollton/281291655848?ref=nf  if you have a FB account, and you can be our fan!  We have only a few so far, so you can get in on the ground floor!!  Actually, no you can’t.  I have spent 20 minutes trying to figure out how to link to it, and now I give up for today.  grrrr.

I’m trying to come up with the Theme of this year’s Tucson Journey.  Any suggestions?

Shut ‘er down, Clancy! She’s pumpin’ mud!!

I know, it makes no sense to anybody, but that’s been running through my head ever since I started trying to set up a FaceBook page for the store! 

I mean, REALLY!!  How can you tell what anything is doing in there?  I accidentally added personal friends (I didn’t even realize I had a personal page in it, and all of a sudden people are saying they will be my friends??  What if I click the wrong thing and accidentally adopt an orphan?  Or a puppy?)

The whole thing is totally horrifying.  And on top of it all, I’m going to have to ask Brenda and Amy to explain this over the phone.  And they’ll try to text me instructions and I’ll be trying to figure out what they mean and then Lucas will make fun of me!!!  AAAAKKKKK!!!!  Sorry, Mary says for me to breathe s l o w l y.   S  l  o  w  l  y…  OK.  I’m nearly all better.

So anyway, we’re getting ready to go to Tucson again, and we’re going to be blogging and tweeting and facepalming.  Oops, FaceBooking.  Face-palming is what I’ve been doing all afternoon.  So of you want to laugh at our total ineptness, and you are in the majority of the population that already has dealt with this, go on over to The Artful Bead in Carrollton on Facebook and be our fan!  Please???  I really feel awful about maybe adopting a puppy by accident.  (The cats Will Not Tolerate that kind of thing.)

We’re back!

Well, our bodies and the beads are back, our brains are still trailing behind somewhere on the road, they should arrive sometime Sunday.

The Fort Worth store’s Tucson Preview Night is next Friday, the 13th at 7PM.  The Carrollton store is having one the next Friday, 20th. (This used to say Carrollton’s was on the 13th, but that’s because I couldn’t track days of the week, and lost several.)

What better Valentine’s day present could you ask for than a stop by the Artful Bead?  Flowers don’t last, candy goes straight behind us, but beads are truly forever!

And because we don’t want to cause anybody undue stress while waiting for Preview Nights, we’re putting out huge piles of pearls (for $4.00 a strand) and slightly smaller piles of stone (for $5.00 strand) on Monday.  And some of the Czech glass, also.

Oh, the Czech glass…  That was a memorable night when Mary said (just a bit louder than necessary) “YOU SPENT A THIRD OF OUR TOTAL BUDGET ON GLASS?????”  Followed by several other comments along the same lines.  Sorry, but she knows I’m a glass whore, it shouldn’t really have shocked her so much. 

Besides, it wasn’t all my fault.  She walked off and left me to the mercy of the beads.  A hank of new glass would sparkle at me and say “Buy me, I’m wonderful and unusual” and I would say “but you’re too expensive, you would sell at $7.00 a strand!” and it would say “BUT I AM FREAKING FABULOUS, BUY ME NOW!” and I’d say “OK!”  This happened a couple of hundred times, I’m sorry to say.  But they are truly all freaking fabulous.  And I’ve promised to let all of them come to the store, I’m not keeping any for myself.  Really.  OK, maybe only 3 or 4 strands, though.  Oh, those great rondells!!!  10 or 12 strands for me.  Sorry.  Oh, the teensy drops!!!  Ummm….