Saturday, October 27, 2012

It feels like Christmas at Halloween

 There is something quite lovely about a package of goodies arriving in the mailbox. Goodies that other hands have made for you. Even if you know they are coming or maybe, it is especially sweet when you are anxiously awaiting the arrival of the mail carrier.

Here I test my ability to operate a camera shutter with my left hand while slitting the package tape with a paring knife.

I belong to a Yahoo group called Charmsters. It was created by Laurel Stevens in 2007. We are a group of a little over 100 people that make and swap charms through the mail. Jean Brederode and Erin Keck became our group moderators in 2011.

Participants sign up for specific swaps that interest them. This Halloween swap was hosted by Lori Guerin. She sorted the charms that were submitted and shipped them to participants in this snazzy orange bag, fiercely guarded by the skeleton.

Here is my loot all spread out. Next I'll show you the charms one by one and tell you who made them.

 A dark stained clay pumpkin with a green glass leaf bead by Kimberly McIntosh

  Glass candy corn charm by Marjorie Grace Sayers

 A bag of assorted goodies and a small vial of stardust from Rena Azevedo Kiehn

 More goodie loot and a bead embellished skull by Anne Savage

 Dark chocolate and caramel square and a spooky, crackled eyeball by our host Lori Guerin

 Black cat in a Deschutes Brewery bottle cap by Eunice Oakley

 Shrinky Dink ghost with dangling  bead eyes by your truly

 Kooky bead embellished skull charm by Zhulia Abrock

 Glitter face in a bottle cap charm by Linda Bucci

 Fluffy black fiber embellished skeleton skull charm by Susan Zacher

 Fused glass gem and Shrinky Dink crow by Carol Ingram Moore

 Enameled candy corn by Susan Berry

 Clay licorice candy and bone skull duo by Amy Huff

Skull and stiffened baler twine scarecrow by Jo Morrison

As you can see we all put our own spin on these charms. Packaging and presentation are often almost as interesting as the charms themselves. Next step is to get these lovelies onto some necklace chain before the holiday overtakes me.

Have a spooktacular Halloween.


P.S. Charmsters - If I made any errors in spelling your name or describing your charm, leave a comment and editing will occur as rapidly as possible.

Sunday, October 21, 2012

Unexpected Beauty - Exit 17 Interstate 26 - North Carolina

Of all the places my travels take me, North Carolina's Department of Transportation seems to have the most successful wildflower program. The principal source of revenue is the sale of personalized license plates. A portion of the extra fee supports wildflower planting and highway beautification. Some folks also make direct contributions, 100% of which goes to the program.

This fall day, the sunflowers are making a glorious and cheery visual statement, but I have seen some lovely plantings of corn poppies and gaillardia in other seasons.

With faces or flower heads  that turn through the day to follow the path of the sun, sunflowers symbolize adoration.

Different sources on the language of flowers say that sunflowers represent loyalty and longevity...

or pure and lofty thoughts.

You get to pick your favorite interpretation.

This spot at exit 17 on Interstate 26 near Weaverville, North Carolina is an easy pull-off and it is just as easy to get back on, so stop and have a look if you pass on by.


It is a lovely autumn - enjoy it before the snow flies.