Thursday, October 29, 2015

Time is a Four Letter Word

Actually, I prefer to be friends with time rather to berate it for betraying me.

The past couple months, I spend each week thinking I'm going to catch up with the emergencies that week then have the following week to organize and take care of other tasks that are waiting in the wings.

But it seems to always be THAT week... the one with the emergencies and never the following week where I can catch up.

I actually say to people, "This week is crazy busy but next week should be less hectic."  But it never is.

Projects, midterms, orders to be made, classes to prepare for, garage sales, online webinars, craft shows, etc.

I look around my workroom and ache to go through boxes and put things away so that when I want to find them I don't have to... go through boxes.

I guess for starters, next semester I won't take three classes at school.  I really am enjoying my classes, though, but yeah, stuff like that isn't important/crucial.

So speaking of "important", in one of my classes we recently went over Stephen Covey's time management matrix.  I use this often, at times like this when I begin to feel overwhelmed and have to pare down the "things" on my plate.


Basically it's this grid.


And then you fill it out.


And from that, you can determine what things need to be taken care of immediately and what things can be left to the wayside (for now, at least).

People are always wishing for more "hours in the day".

One way to achieve that is less sleep... something I'm not willing to give up.

There are tons of articles on the subject:
http://www.apa.org/topics/sleep/why.aspx
http://www.nhlbi.nih.gov/health/health-topics/topics/sdd/why
https://hbr.org/2006/10/sleep-deficit-the-performance-killer


So my mantra for today?  Time is elastic to my needs.

This also means I'm cutting this short today because I've got stuff to do.  Oh, but first... here's a peek into the world of my gratitude journal.

Later!



Saturday, October 3, 2015

Riveting and Patinas and Metal Clay Lentils

Wild September.... hoping for a mellower October.

No one to blame but myself, so this can't be much of a complaint. Maybe more of an observation.

I'll start backwards.

Here are some photos I took from today's class.

First I was admiring Angela's cuff bracelet. She made it after learning to etch in my workshop last week.



Then while we were waiting for the kiln to finish (we started on metal clay yesterday), we did some riveting. There are still some issues to work out if we want to use the crazy expensive riveting tool I have (ugh!), but here are some eyelets my student was able to set.



And I reverted to the old fashioned method of making them by hand using fine silver wire.



BTW, that red patina on the background of my pendant was totally an accident (but such a happy one I kept it). I was soldering that jumpring bail onto the back of the pendant and when quenched it and was just about to drop it into the pickle pot, I saw this cool red color and not one speck of oxidation. So I decided to leave it as is and just put some Ren wax on it.

This piece will be going into my secondary Etsy shop.

So after that, we got our lentils and bead caps from the kiln. Here's the lentils looked like after they cooled.



To show my student what sealant does to these lovely heat patinas, I demo'd on mine.



After that, we both cleaned our lentils then gave them LOS baths. Here's my student's. These cell phone photos don't do any kind of justice to the fabulousness of her bronze pendant. The colors were beautiful (but again, who knows how long they'll last).





And here's one of her own lampwork beads with bronze caps (made from metal clay). She also set the tubing by hand (because that beautiful bead was too big for my little Impress bead liner).