Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Bead bracelets

Recent finished projects. I think it's been forever since I beaded something that wasn't pink-themed.
This was fun to make. Its a beaded rope using 2 sizes of seed beads, causing it to spiral, and flowers and leaves mixed in.

Peacock color beads. This one is from the Feb/March 2005 issue of Beadwork.
Pictures don't show very well. My husband and I have discussed getting a good camera now that we have a baby on the way. I've been making due with my crumby cell phone, so a new camera will be nice. I don't think I've ever used a nice camera..


Big news - I'm going to have a baby! I'm excited!
I've known for a while, but I wanted to delay announcing it to all. I'm now in my 9th week, start of month 3, and will have my first check up next week. Occasionally I'd like to post what I'm feeling/going through.

I first found out on September 27th via home test. I repeated the test on the 28th to make sure I wasn't getting my hopes up. People have told me that I am lucky that the majority of my pregnancy will take place during winter, since pregnant women tend to feel very hot. Doctors have guessed my due date will be around May 31st. That is right at the beginning of summer, and I don't know how I'll do toting a baby/diaper bag/carrier car seat/etc. around with me during the peak of summer. All the more reason to convince my husband to finally buy me an air conditioner for the house! just kidding.

So, let me talk about some of the fun stuff that has happened so far - symptoms!! yay!
First: morning sickness - while I did feel especially nauseous, I didn't actually vomit. I'm glad to say that I haven't vomited very much in my 27 years of life. I was also very dizzy for the first 2 months. At the start of month 3, I haven't had either symptom. When I first suspected I was pregnant (when my cycle was late, around the 23rd of Sept.) I decided to stop all my medications cold turkey. I was taking medication for depression and anxiety, and both cause dizzy/nausea when starting or stopping, so I don't know how much of my symptoms I could contribute to pregnancy versus medicine withdrawals.

Digestive issues/stoppage/etc. Within the first few weeks I was sooo bloated that I looked 4 months pregnant already. They say that no one is gassy like a pregnant woman.. it's true. Constipation also goes hand-in-hand with pregnancy, unfortunately. For the first month and a half, heartburn was also a big opponent. Before, I was taking Prilosec OTC, but it isn't safe to take anymore. The heartburn has cooled down for the most part. Rolaids Chews and chewable fiber tablets are my friends.

Food cravings! Weeks ago, I had a turkey sandwich from the store, but it was so dry, so I put mustard and dill relish on it. I loved the dill relish so much that after I ate the hoagie sandwich, I sat down with a spoon and the jar of dill pickle relish. It was so satisfying. I also feel like I'd rather have plain vanilla ice cream over my other favorite flavors. Especially vanilla soft serve. For my husband's birthday we ate at a Chinese restaurant, and it was good until I had to smell the leftovers in the fridge. Ever time the fridge door opened, I was running away gagging.

Breasts. Yes, I'll talk about my boobies... (ugh) The pain..! It hurts so much! I've never wanted so much to just cut them off. Up until now I have never, ever been sensitive there, in a good or bad way. Now I find myself smacking them against random furniture, or even rubbing on my shirt is enough to send me crying. Almost every morning, my cat Matrix likes to cuddle with me by laying on my tummy (his favorite spot, now that I'm expecting) and when he gets the urge to rub against my face his paws put all of his weight on my nipple. It seems he's not bothered by my screaming out in pain. Recently he found himself flying off the bed.

Other symptoms. Excess saliva - apparently drooling is a symptom of pregnancy. I don't know if I drool when I sleep, but during the day I find that I have more spit than normal.
Sensitive to smell - I smell things so much stronger now. Last night I fried some chicken, and even after cleaning up, I couldn't sleep because I could smell oil and it was making me gag.
Itching - this keeps me up most nights. A mix of hormones and winter are probably to blame. Anti-itch cream don't work. Last night the itching caused me to break into tears of frustration. I think this is the worst thing I'm going through right now..

I also have to pee all the time. And I feel exhausted all the time. I've never been so glad to be jobless. I read that the first and last trimester are the worst, and I've just started the last month of the first trimester. I'm counting down to better days soon.

Right now, baby is about 1 inch long. I've gained 6 lbs so far. I'm not fazed by that since my weight has always fluctuated a lot. I gain and lose so fast, and I've already had stretch marks from weight loss/gain before I even became pregnant. I'm looking forward to becoming round like a hippo! My first doctor's appointment will be Nov. 2nd, five more days! I'll have a battery of tests done. My family is pretty excited, and I'll be getting many phone calls asking how things went.

In other news, my husband and I just celebrated 7 years of marriage! The 26th was our anniversary, we celebrated with very full tummies after eating at a Japanese steakhouse.

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Artist Trading Cards

Recently I was at the craft store buying embroidery floss, and near the checkout was some discarded merchandise. Among them was a pack of canvas paper blank "trading cards". It is for creating your own miniature art pieces to trade with others, called Artist Trading Cards. I had never heard of it before, but it's a neat idea. I bought a pack and have been painting them with kimono patterns. These cards are available for trade if interested, but I don't know how well the "trading market" is doing (??)...

Kimono series, card 1 - "Shibori"
July '09A simple design, made to look like Japanese tie-dye dots called shibori.

Kimono series, card 2 - "Blooms"
July '09
This one uses color pencil and sharpie to draw sakura cherry blossoms.

Kimono series, card 3 - "Sakura"
June '09
Another sakura, on a gradient background.

Kimono series, card 4 - "Low Tide"
September '09
I liked the idea of this one. The background is a soft silver, and with the gold flowers the shine is bright (not seen in the scan, sorry) but unfortunately my pencil made deep indents in the darker gray "waves" so it shows up as scars when viewed at an angle.

Kimono series, card 5 - "Tsunami"
Again, I wish the shine could be seen. I used a purple background and then topped it with the same silver paint. The effect is so glittery. The green lines in the "waves" is also topped with the silvery sheen.

So, those are my first attempts. I hope to get better at fine details. I have the hardest time finding decent fine-tip paint brushes. I'd love any advice people have on how to keep the paint brush tip nice and pointy!

Thursday, October 1, 2009

Beading, again

Can you tell I'm trying to make up for lost time? Multi-post day, yay!

Another bead project. This bracelet is made of seed beads and lucite flowers.

The charm of this one is that it looks different depending on the angle. The clasp is the big flower, as a toggle-type closure, utilizing a magnetic clasp.


After the emotional blow of getting fired, my sister took me out shopping at her workplace. She works at a bead store, Shipwreck Beads. I had an extremely good time. I indulged in an espresso - something I hadn't had since becoming jobless, and I splurged on beads. Up until that day I was stuck at home crying non-stop, I didn't think I'd 180 emotionally in one day. That shopping day kick-started my dormant creativity and gave me something to be excited about again.
I've made several items since then, but recently I've been on a creative downward slope.. I figured I should post some things, and maybe my creative juices will get going again.
So, here is a bracelet I've made. I used a pattern in a bead magazine, I don't remember which..

It's made of seed beads, the flowers woven in a 3D shape. It's cute and girly, but the clasp is cheap quality and difficult to open and close.

Long time no see

So, adding to my blogs has taken a backseat recently. Last July I was fired from my job, during a difficult time in which I was already fighting depression and anxiety. The blow was really tough on me, and added a lot to my emotional pains. I regret to say that for the longest time I have been curled up in a ball, hiding in bed, avoiding the world. I'm still recovering, but better than I was. Things are getting better now. Wish me luck in a speedy recovery.