Blog Business

How Taking the “Design Your Process Challenge” Changed My Writing

I’ve been writing pretty much my whole adult life. Confession: I was a terrible student who found school to be quite boring, so I spent a lot of class time writing hilarious notes to my friends. Back in the day when i worked in an office, part of my job was to handle business correspondence. I also wrote the training and procedural manuals we used.

When I started my blog, it was mostly DIY tutorials, which worked out ok because I am pretty darn good at technical writing. But I really wanted my blog to be more than just craft tutorials. so I took April Bowles-Olin’s course, “Build a Successful Creative Blog” and learned a ton about creating engaging content. More importantly, April’s course gave me permission to write a more authentic blog, full of what makes me uniquely me.

Red Scorpio creates bold unique statement jewelry. 100% Handmade by richelle shadoan. Beaded bracelets and necklaces make perfect gifts for the woman in your life who has everything. How to be awesome. Step out of your comfort zone. Live an artful life. Dare to be awesome.
Good Times

But something major was still missing. Sometimes my writing would flow and I’d put out a terrific article. Mostly, I struggled with writing a decent post. I’d get an idea and just start randomly writing. Sometimes I’d make my point. Sometimes I’d miss.


My friend Kris is an amazing writing coach. She tried to convince me so many times that what I needed was a process for my writing. And I totally knew she was right because she is super smart and she lays it out in a way I completely understand. But even with her wise insight, I resisted because I always felt “too busy” to do the writing prep and instead continued to stumble through by just writing posts off the top of my head. Don’t judge. Everyone knows stuff they should be doing but don’t do it for one BS reason or another.


This week, I’ve been watching and following along with Kris’ awesome “Design Your Process” challenge. In the course, Kris explains how to improve your content and make it more engaging by using a process to make your writing more powerful and effective. So I decided to write this post by working through this process, beginning with pre-writing and then moving on to drafting, revising, editing and publishing.

Red Scorpio creates bold unique statement jewelry. 100% Handmade by richelle shadoan. Beaded bracelets and necklaces make perfect gifts for the woman in your life who has everything. How to be awesome. Step out of your comfort zone. Live an artful life. Dare to be awesome.

I would never dream of writing a tutorial without an outline, but when it came to blogging, I generally would jump from the idea & research step straight into drafting. My drafts were sort of like free writing, where I’d spill everything onto the paper (or screen) and then go back and edit for clarity, spelling, grammar, and such. Then I’d hit publish and cross my fingers that the post would resonate with my audience.

Red Scorpio creates bold unique statement jewelry. 100% Handmade by richelle shadoan. Beaded bracelets and necklaces make perfect gifts for the woman in your life who has everything. How to be awesome. Step out of your comfort zone. Live an artful life. Dare to be awesome.

Using the process Kris describes in the DYP challenge made writing this post a breeze. When I worked through the process of pre-writing, drafting, revising & editing, I was able to articulate my thoughts in a cohesive way.  [Tweet “After much resistance, I think I’ve finally seen the light.”] Thank you Kris!

Red Scorpio creates bold unique statement jewelry. 100% Handmade by richelle shadoan. Beaded bracelets and necklaces make perfect gifts for the woman in your life who has everything. How to be awesome. Step out of your comfort zone. Live an artful life. Dare to be awesome.

If you struggle with creating consistently engaging content, or labor over writing articles that should be easy to write, it’s likely that you need learn and apply the process to your writing. Don’t fight it, it’s good for you. You had better hurry though! “Design Your Process” is going away May 18th! Did I mention it’s free?


I’m participating in a Blog Link-up with Kris (With a K) from, because she wants to hear about the role writing plays in our businesses.

Kris is giving a Writing Workshop for entrepreneurs and bloggers, starting May 25th, and she wants to give away a scholarship to one of the lovely bloggers who participate in this link up. You can participate and get a chance to win too.

Just copy and paste this piece of text into the introduction of your blog post answering the question, “How has writing been beneficial to your business, and what do you want to Craft with your Voice next?” Link back to this post, so any of your friends who are entering will be able to find it for more info.

Finally, go back to Kris’s blog on or after May 12th to add your link to the link-up party there, and you could win a scholarship to her new course: Craft Your Voice. She’ll be drawing a name on the 18th of May for a full scholarship to the 6 week writing course, so you can write and link-up your post any time before then.


Attack of the Dreaded Imposter Syndrome

So much to do and so little time. I am polishing up the website this week and getting everything super pro, checking off my New Years Resolutions one by one. Nice. Here is an awesome post about “Imposter Syndrome”, which is the perfect subject this week since I had a little “Who do you think you are” attack. Fleeting, thankfully but still, not cool. [Tweet “We are all awesome and doing our best. Let’s keep reminding ourselves and each other of that important fact. “]


Originally Published August 18, 2014



I am about to do the scariest thing I have ever done. This week, as I may have mentioned once or twice, I will be sitting in the front row at CreativeLive for the fabulous Tara Gentile‘s course, “Market Launch and Sell Your Next Big Thing“. That is not the part that is scaring me. Confession: I am afraid to fly. Like really, really terrified. I am scared of planes, actually, which is yet another strange quirk and just part of my never-ending charm. On top of that, I have never traveled alone before. I have never even gone to a movie or a restaurant alone. What can I say, I met my soul mate when I was 18. But I am so excited to be a part of this experience that I am not going to let a little terror stop me.

creativelive with Tara swiger marketing for crafters class july 2014
CreativeLive, straight ahead!

Yesterday, I got an email from Tara, setting up a pre-show meeting. Fantastic idea! It will be very helpful to get some things worked out before appearing in front of a live audience. Then I see who is cc’d in the email. Two names pop out immediately, Ana of Ana Apple Designs, and Sasha Cagen of Quirky Alone, and I begin to panic. These ladies are real business people. Really for real. What the heck was I doing trying to include myself into this group? Make no mistake, I have complete confidence in my art. My business skills, not so much. I frequently “joke” about what a terrible business person I am, and we all know that comedy is truth in disguise.

creativelive with Tara swiger marketing for crafters class july 2014
Eyes on the Prize!

So I had myself a little pity party. I am usually insanely optimistic, so this is not at all the kind of party I like to throw. My saint of a husband said all of the right things and asked, “Do you want to talk about it?” “No, I’m good,” I assured him. Because I knew it would pass. It’s called “impostor syndrome” and it’s a real thing, but I had to get over it. So what if these ladies are more successful than I am? I am not in competition with them. I want us all to do well. I am just not as far along in the journey, and that is ok because I already knew that I was built for comfort, not for speed.

The bracelet I made especially for the trip
Seriously though, you better order one before I get famous.

Whenever I get worried about my slow progress, I just have to remind myself that some things take time. Just keep moving forward and you will get when you are going.


I will leave you with that sentiment, and also a picture of my Sulcata tortoise, Frank. He never gives up, he always soldiers on, even if he is stuck under the fire pit and has to drag it 20 feet across the yard before it frees itself.

Showgirl chicken Liza and Sulcata tortoise Frank
Frank takes what he wants. Sorry Liza.




When The Shine of the New Year’s Eve Ball Fades…

That is the official name BTW. The “New Year’s Eve Ball”. That seems sort of underwhelming. But I digress. It’s February and Puxatawny Phil has predicted 6 more weeks of Winter. How do you stay on point when your spirit starts flagging? Pull out all the stops.




Wood Burning
Wood Burning


Do something fun

Last week I finally felt like I was hitting that wall. I had maintained my momentum pretty well, but then I started to drag. I was working more and getting less done because I was burning out. Administrative work is an undeniable component to owning your own business. It’s like pretty much all of it to be honest. And then there are those days when you get to do something creative. Thankfully, that day came for me last week. In fact, it was several days in a row of nothing but making stuff. It was amazing.




I made a basket
I made a basket


Try something different

So, I have a super secret project going on. It involves a lot of making. And, lucky for me, it involves learning some new skills. When you feel tired of doing the same old thing, a tiny shake up can do a world of good. I tried a new craft. Maybe you could try a new restaurant. Or take a different route to and from work. Anything to make it seem like you are not in a rut.





Go outside

My go to when I am feeling wrung out is a trip to nature. I was seriously frazzled last weekend, working non-stop to meet a deadline. Saturday, Greg and I took a day trip to the mountains. I brought my planner, so I was still working, it’s true, but I do some of my best planning at picnic benches.



Or go drinking. Who am I to judge?
Or go drinking. Who am I to judge?


Have a pity party

If all else fails, throw a tantrum and move on. Indulge in an ugly cry, pig out on something horrible, sleep in, and reset. But don’t fall into a pattern. The next day, go back to hitting it hard.


I am pumped, you guys. I am excited to be working on something new and I can’t wait to share it with you very soon.


What is your favorite way to bounce back from

burn-out? Share in the comments!


“A goal without a plan is just a wish”

If you are ready to stop wishing and are eager to make things happen, you have to form a plan. For real. In writing. With a timeline, actionable steps and measurable milestones.


It isn’t easy to stay focused on fulfilling goals, at least not for me and not for most of the people I speak with. There are so many distractions.


This is the kind of stuff that distracts me.
This is the kind of stuff that distracts me.


Heck, I don’t even need outside influences like Facebook or Pinterest to distract me. My own thoughts swirl about my head like a tornado, scattering my focus to the far corners as if it were a Kansas farmhouse. Big ideas, small ideas, fleeting thoughts that might turn into something if I remember to revisit them later, when I’m not in the middle of doing something else.


A fairly accurate visual representation of the inside of my mind.
A fairly accurate visual representation of the inside of my mind.


The only thing that works for me is getting it all out on paper. So I created my own system for keeping track of long-term and short-term goals, as well as brilliant ideas that pop into my head, all in one place.





The Red Scorpio Goal-fulfillment System is the super cheesy but rad name I gave to my custom planner. And I can call it the RSGS. Bonus. It is the best tool for helping me GSD so far. I have been refining it for years, literally, and I think it is just about perfect. I realize perfection is not an attainable goal, so I will settle for absolutely excellent.


My actual planner



You do not need to buy my system. In fact, much of it is available for free on my blog. The planner that I offer for sale has all the days and dates filled in for you, though. So if that might be something you feel is worth not hassling over, check it out. You don’t have to use my free planner either. It works great for me, but there are lots of planners out there and the point is just to adopt some form of planning system. Start doing stuff on purpose.


[Tweet “Default is usually the lamest setting. Be intentional.”]


The time is right to make a commitment to planning your future. Something is going to happen, one way or the other, so you might at least try to skew the results in your favor. The journey of 1000 miles must begin with the first step. The first step of your journey should be planning. Would you drive somewhere you’ve never gone before without at least printing a Google map? You would not and you know it.


planner Collage button


Click here to get more info & check out some sample pages




How to Make Those Resolutions Stick

It’s time, people. We’ve all made our resolutions and now we have to figure out how to follow through. Here are a couple of tips to boost success. I don’t have pictures that illustrate these ideas so I just used some pretty photos from my gallery. I think it works.


1) Make sure it is something you really want. Life is too short to take on projects with no passion. Only set you really want to fulfill.



2) Tell the world. Nowadays it is so easy to broadcast your intentions, and that helps keep you accountable. And accountability is key for goal fulfillment.


A little too much perspective.
A little too much perspective.


3) Have a plan. One of my resolutions is to keep up on the laundry. What? I just told you to make sure your resolution is something you want to do and I for sure do not want to do laundry. Or it would be done by now. I do however want to reap the benefits of having my laundry done and put away versus piled up all over my house.

“Keep up on laundry” sounds so easy and doable, and for sure, it is not rocket science. But it is more complicated than breathing in and out, so it requires some thought and planning. Same with “Exercise more”, “Drink more water”, “Be more mindful”. How will I make this happen? One load every day? Once a week, all laundry, all day? I am still working this plan out so I will let you know.


Rainy day on Bourbon St.
Rainy day on Bourbon St.


4) Be realistic. Make your goals S.M.A.R.T. Don’t set yourself up for failure. You are not going to become fluent in Spanish this year unless you move to Mexico and don’t have a choice. Sorry to have to break it to you. You can set a goal to “Take a Spanish Class”, or “Learn 10 Helpful Phrases in Spanish”.


Beautiful downtown San Diego, from the bridge
Beautiful downtown San Diego, from the bridge


5) Make it enjoyable. I always like to put some fun challenges on my list, and that is totally legit. Last year I set a goal to enter a project into the SD County Fair, and I actually won a ribbon. This year I want to sing Karaoke.


Sparkly ring
Sparkly ring


6) Things change, your intentions may change, and that is ok. It is important to set goals. It is just as important to know what goals are worth your time. You’ve got to know when to hold ’em and know when to fold ’em.

Tweet: Move forward and make progress. That is the point. via @redscorpiomade  Move forward and make progress. That is the point.





New Year’s Resolutions! Woot!

I love New Year’s Eve because I really dig symbolism, and what is more symbolic than a holiday dedicated to a fresh start?


Tweet: night the sun goes down and every day it comes up again... a fresh start, a new chance. via @redscorpiomadeLet’s not forget that every night the sun goes down and every day it comes up again, signaling a fresh start. Every day is a new chance.


That said, I do make New Year’s Resolutions and here they are in no particular order…


#1) Systems and schedules for success. This is my theme for the year. I write it on my daily planner every day to help reinforce the idea. I began this in 2014, and this year I am really ramping it up. For real though.


NYres 201420


#2) “Get used to the sound of my voice”. I wrote this in my planner on December 30th when I was contemplating my plans for 2015. I would love to do a podcast, but the thought of hearing myself speak on tape made me cringe. January 3rd, I was in Death Valley camping and had no cell signal. My laptop had just enough juice for me to write a one-page document. Greg was on a day-long solo hike so it was just me and the dogs. That got boring after a while so I just decided to try recording my voice, you know, to get used to it. I ended up making three kind of long recordings because I quickly realized that hearing my own voice did not bother me in the least. I was elated, but kind of annoyed at the same time for waiting so long to discover this! I could have been making voice notes the whole time. Psssh. But bonus, I got to check off a resolution on day 3, the fastest time yet. And then I turned it into a new resolution which is…


#3) Do a bunch more stuff I think I will hate. I am still working on the list and will share it with you ASAP. Also, just because they’re called “New Year’s Resolutions” does not mean you need to make a list by January 1st and then that’s it. I add stuff for at least a month. Sometimes longer.


#4) Create a morning routine. A perpetual resolution. Each year I get a little better.


#5) Sing Karaoke. Not just sing Karaoke, but get so comfortable singing Karaoke that I can do it any time, even while sober.



WiR 0930144


#6) Simplify my space. It’s too chaotic. It’s starting to bug me. I am going to get my pal Jane Dolan involved in this because she is an organizational Zen Master. Or Mistress.


#7) Get into Oprah’s O Magazine Gift Guide. This is a holdover from last year because I missed the cut off date. Not this year. Coming for you Oprah. You won’t be sorry.


#8) Act impulsively. I realized beyond a shadow of a doubt that I work best when backed into a corner. I have always been careful about what I say I am going to do because I don’t want to commit out loud and risk failing.  Funny thing though, all that ‘secret’ stuff never gets done. I can easily justify letting myself down, but I don’t feel the same when others are involved. It’s the power of accountability, people! So I am going to just blurt stuff out and then I will be forced to back my sh!t up.


great advice


#9) Paint a big giant picture. I bought some large canvases last year (yikes!) and they’ve been sitting here staring at me because I am too intimidated by their big giant blankness. This year, I am ready to vajayjay up and go for it. The worst that will happen is I will be out about $15, but know what? I already am!


Wishing you the best 2015 ever ♥


How about you? Any good ones you would like to share?

I would love to hear them. Please share in the comments!


 Would you like to get more stuff done in 2015? Maybe check out my system for goal-fulfillment…


Blog Blog Business

Make Money While I Sleep? Uh, Yes Please!

“Are you ready to make your creative work more lucrative, stable, and sustainable in the long-term? Join April Bowles-Olin for an introduction to digital products and how they can enhance your creative business. This course will show you how to produce and position viable products for generating multiple revenue streams and passive income. RSVP right here to watch it live and get access to the workbook for FREE. This post is part of the Create Digital Products blog tour.”


Let’s start with a little background. I met April Bowles-Olin when I attended her first course at CreativeLive, Build a Successful Creative Blog. I impulsively signed up because my blog was floundering and I needed some help. I also love a challenge, and being in the Front Row was far outside my comfort zone. Thank goodness I had no idea what a Super Star Ms. Bowles is or I would have been even more nervous than I already was. If you watch the course, which I highly recommend to all bloggers and wanna-be bloggers, you will learn LOTS of pro tips and also see me looking like I am going to be sick.

Red Scorpio at CreativeLive
Red Scorpio at CreativeLive


That course literally changed my life as I have written about a few times. If you follow my blog then you already know this. If you don’t follow my blog, you really should. There’s a box at the end of this post that you should totally check out.


Not only did I up my blogging game, but I met a great group of creatives, in person and over the interwebs, and formed a relationship with April. I began following April’s awesome blog, Blacksburg Belle and she has taught me a ton about running a successful creative business.

Here is My Goal!
Here is My Goal!

I joined April & Mayi’s League of Supers, an amazing source of support, advice, sympathy, empathy and just plain love and friendship. I’ve also participated in a couple of April’s blog tours, so of course I jumped at the chance to be a part of this one too.

The guidelines set by April were simple –

 Pick one of the following topics to blog about:

a) What you’d love to learn from my upcoming course, Create Digital Products that Sell While You Sleep

b) The biggest questions you have when it comes to selling digital or information products

c) Your best-selling digital product and why you think it’s the most successful (if you already sell digital or information products)

d) Why you want to learn how to create and sell digital products

e) The biggest issues you’ve had with trying to sell digital products

Alright well, I want to learn everything and I have a million questions. Because my jewelry is labor intensive, I’d love a product that was easily reproducible. I don’t have any digital products yet, so those don’t apply.




Sorry April, but I decided to go off topic a bit and talk about my most important question:

Why Learn About Digital Products From April Bowles-Olin

There is certainly no shortage of passive income “experts”. Just Google it, you will get a thousand suggestions. So why would I choose April’s course over all the others? Well, for starters she is an amazing teacher. She is a diligent hard worker who is going to leave no stone unturned to gather every bit of relevent information on the subject of passive income. She is realistic. She’s not promising any get rich quick schemes. She believes in living your passion. This course is going to teach us how to make money doing what we truly love. Her workbooks are flipping fantastic. She has put in a ton of effort to make this a comprehensive course in creating digital products, from the nuts and bolts of making a digital product that suits your business to the more ethereal and harder to grasp concepts of targeting a market and product positioning. I want to know not just how to start but to successfully sustain a passive income offering, and I trust April to teach me.


creativelive with Tara swiger marketing for crafters class july 2014
About to go on the air, watching myself on TV. Surreal.


If you are interested in launching a successful digital product, my advice to you is that you purchase this amazing course. Yes, you can watch for free during the live broadcast, and it will be super cool, but if you upgrade to any time access for $49 ($49!!!) not only will you be able to watch & rewatch the course, but you will score some incredible bonuses that only come with purchase.

Please RSVP and then watch November 10-11 to be blown away by the magic that is April Bowles-Olin. Also, I will be in the front row and now that I’m used to it, I don’t look so ill anymore. Although, I do have RBF (look it up) and I just can’t help that.

Check out the entire list of participating bloggers here.

Blog Blog

Always Look on the Bright Side of Life

Last week was a terrible, horrible, no good week, but the weekend was great. Camping in the mountains, the weather was perfect and our trailer was in the shade of some gorgeous manzanita trees all day. I was able to clear my head and get a lot of design work done. I was ready to start this week out on a high note.


Nope. Had to call a plumber first thing this morning. Not cool. And I got this. WTH, this is not a fortune.

Fortune cookie, are you even trying?
Fortune cookie, are you even trying?


I saw something online, probably on Facebook, that said,

Tweet: The things you take for granted, someone is praying for ~ via @redscorpiomade“The things you take for granted, someone is praying for”. Yep.


So I had a bad week. And it spilled over into Monday. I got some cool stuff done today and I am grateful for that. I have everything I need and most of what I want, and I am very grateful for that.


Tomorrow is another day...
Tomorrow is another day…

“After all,” as Scarlett O’Hara famously said, “Tomorrow is another day.”






Tattoo Stories – London 2002

My doodle...
My doodle…

I challenged myself to a doodle a day for the month of October. It’s harder than it sounds. After only a couple of days, I had to resort to my old standbys. This pierced heart with initials, ‘G’ for Greg and ‘R’ for Richelle, is something I doodle a lot. The two droplets represent our two kids. Awwww…


First stop, the pub...
First stop, the pub…

My London tattoo story…

In 2001, British airways kicked off new non-stop service from San Diego to Heathrow by offering a deal that was too good to be true; round trip tickets for two for $750. Neither of us had ever even thought about visiting London, but how could we pass it up? We imagined friendly, charming pubs on every corner, lots of beer, and jolly patrons having a party every night. Maybe some sing-alongs. You know, like in the movies. There were pubs everywhere, that’s for sure, but most were full of yuppies drinking Bud Light and Smirnoff Ice, and they weren’t particularly jolly or friendly.


our 'local' pub
our ‘local’ pub

During the days, we visited some of the best museums in the world, which was super cool because we are big time museum nerds. Each night we’d try a different pub hoping for a party and end up sipping pints of stout by ourselves while everyone else enjoyed a Corona with a lime or Mike’s Hard Lemonade. Were we were in London or Pacific Beach? On our last day, we decided to go all out, starting with tattoos, then our own self guided pub crawl. We were getting pretty good at taking public transportation so we just rode around on the bus, hopping off when we saw an interesting looking place to stop for a beer.

londonpubs 10061411


The tattoo place we found took cash only, so we hit the ATM but due to some sort of glitch, no money came out. We tried again, but since (in theory anyway) we had just taken out our daily limit, it wouldn’t give us any more. We found a tattoo parlor that took credit, and since I knew what I wanted (see above doodle), I got in the chair right away. The tattoo artist was offended when I offered to draw my design. I ended up with a tattoo that only vaguely resembled my drawing. Then for no apparent reason the manager decided he wanted to close an hour early, so no more tattoos after me, meaning Greg wasn’t going to get one. Bummer. Our pub crawl was not going that great either, and it had started to rain, so we decided to grab one last pint and call it a night.

One last chance to have a great night...
One last chance to have a great night…



The pub wasn’t yet crowded when we got there so we sat alone and sipped our beers as the place filled up.

Empty pub, but not for long...
Empty pub, but not for long…

Eventually, a couple asked if they could share our table, and of course we welcomed them. After an awkward minute, I broke the ice with that old pick-up line, “So do you come here often?” As it turned out, they did not, in fact it was their first time. They were going to a play and stopped of for a drink before the theater. We chatted for a bit before they had to leave to make their show, and immediately two young ladies asked if they could take the empty seats. I tried out a different line this time, “Are you from around here?” No, actually, they were from Canada, in London on a work exchange program. We drank several rounds with them, joined by a girl from Holland who had just returned from a trip to LA where she attended a taping of the Jay Leno show, and a group of guys from Nottingham whose accents were so thick, I could barely understand them. We partied with our new friends until closing time (not that impressive since the pubs close at midnight) then rode the bus back to our room, very pleased that we were able to end our trip on a fantastic note.


The next day was a little rough, I must say. Fortunately we were able to sleep on the long flight. We returned home, safe and sound, with wonderful memories of an amazing night, and a super cool souvenir. It’s not how I pictured it, but I love it.



By the way, I have abandoned my doodle challenge, and that is ok. Sometimes you need to know what is not working and cut it loose.


Got a tattoo story? Please share in the comments!





Blog Business

Adventures in Red Scorpioland





Last week was another exciting roller-coaster ride at Red Scorpio Handmade. So action-packed that I completely forgot to write about it on Friday. Ooops.


Monday while tending our tiny garden, I finally found the dirty culprit that has been eating a little bit of every tomato on the plant, rendering them unfit for human consumption but perfectly fine for chickens and tortoises. This monster was as big as my finger. So, sorry chickens, you won’t be getting anymore tomatoes, but here’s a big fat caterpillar for you instead, ok?


Tomato Destroyer!
Tomato Destroyer!

Also on Monday, I had a consultation with a creative business coach whose opinion I respect a great deal. She suggested splitting my business into two brands; Red Scorpio for the crazy bold statement jewelry and Richellemarie for the nostalgic, personal photo jewelry. At first I was a little freaked out, but by the next day I was totally on board with the idea and I am moving myself forward in that direction.

Order yours at
Order yours at

Tuesday I got to work on my new business plan. More desk work. Woot. And also my Dad had double bypass surgery. He is doing well. Neither of those things are particularly uplifting, so here is an adorable picture of my dog Lola.

WiR 0915145

Wednesday, my Mom’s birthday present was ready to start stringing. Here is a picture of my work space. It is utter chaos. Whenever I make a new jewelry piece, I basically break out 20 or 30 bead choices to work from. Every necklace has four strands of beads, each with its own unique patterns and bead palette. It is a time-consuming process, but my desire is for every piece to have its own personality, and for the bead palette to perfectly complement the photo. It is worth spending time to make them extra special.

something about a messy desk = creativity?
something about a messy desk = creativity?

Throwback Thursday featured this awesome photo of my Tia Margaret and Uncle Joe with their sweet ’53 Chevy. They passed the car down to my Uncle Jack when he started driving, then my Uncle Bob, and then when I turned 18, it was passed down to me. I loved this car. Loved. I still think about it all the time. It is the car I wooed my sweetie in, way back in the day, until one night it blew up on the freeway while I was driving him home after a date because I had a car and he didn’t. If I ever win the Powerball, one of the first things I plan to do is track that car down. Not just the same kind of car, but the exact car.

Best. Car. Ever.
Best. Car. Ever.

Finished my Mom’s necklace on Friday, one day before the deadline. Not bad. It has been unbearably hot this week in SoCal. This is how my dog Gladys likes to stay cool. First, she bathes in Frank’s water basin, then she rolls around in the dirt and grass. I’m not really sure what the second step accomplishes, but she is really into it. Poor Frank has to drink her bath water though. I am just trying to stay as cool as possible by blasting a fan right at my face.

Dirt makes you cooler somehow.
Dirt makes you cooler somehow.


Saturday was my Mom and my Grandpa’s birthdays. I made some yummy pulled pork, we all got together to celebrate, and Mom loved her necklace.


This is my Mom you guys. Right?
This is my Mom you guys. Right?

Sunday started off hot as heck. 95º at 10:36 am? That’s just ridiculous. Worse yet, it was only supposed to get hotter. 105º by Tuesday. Yay. Fabulous fish tacos for brunch made it bearable to live in SoCal for the time being.

Except for my family, the only thing i would miss about San Diego.
Except for my family, the only thing I would miss about San Diego.

We visited my Dad at the hospital for the last time, since they finally released him to go home. After 10 days in the hospital, he was very excited to get the heck out of there. I don’t have a picture of that.

wait what?
wait what?

To keep from melting, we went for a nice long swim in my Mom’s pool.

Cool pool
Cool pool

This week is going to be another hectic week, just like everyone else’s I bet. I am still working on splitting my jewelry line into two brands. It’s a lot of tedious work and it keeps me from doing what I love to do: make art! Being in business for yourself isn’t all just fun and games, and playing with art stuff and beads. It’s a business with lots of business-y tasks. It is still a thousand times better than my last job, so I’m not complaining.

Beautiful sky
Beautiful sky

We are also prepping for our weekend camping trip to Silver Strand state Beach, planned 6 months ago. How funny that we will be camping near the ocean the two coolest days in the forecast. Perfect. That’s fine, it is still going to be amazing camping at one of the most beautiful beaches in SoCal. There will be lots of pictures of that next week.

Alright, we are all caught up. What have you been up to? Share in the comments, please!