Swallows Nest Pottery (Etsy Shop) meets JudysTreehouse (Etsy Shop) a unique and beautiful collaboration.
“Serendipity (noun) – the occurrence and development of events by chance in a happy or beneficial way”
Etsy has been a joyous journey for me. I’ve found some awesome treasures along my way…..not only material treasures but awesome people and treasured friendships I will forever cherish.
These beautiful pottery pendants were created by the most lovely lady, Eileen. Our serendipitous friendship began around Christmas time last year when I found her lovely pottery shop on Etsy and purchased a few of the beautiful pottery platters she creates for gifts. A simple question about internet providers and living in the country started a lively chatter and a new friendship blossomed.
I haven’t met her in person yet but we are cyber pals and chat weekly, if not more.
She sent me these gorgeous pendants she created and said, “Girl, see what you can do with these” and now we have a few collaborated pieces……so cool!
So the moral of my story is……”life is a journey and the people you meet along the way”. And, for me Etsy has turned into more than just a market place of cool unique treasures. It’s a cool people place, too.
Check out Eileen’s lovely pottery creations. I have one of her gorgeous egg platters and the most awesome bowl and look forward to adding more of her beautiful pieces to my collection.
Of late I’ve really been getting into and enjoying herbal teas. I guess you could say they are my newest addiction. There’s just something about the “mystic” of the blends, the “calm” in waiting for the water to heat, the “melodic” whistle of the tea kettle calling your attention, the “clarity” of the hot water as you pour it into your cup, the “anticipation” of good things to come as the leaves and flowers “meld” together to become a “unity” of unique, earthy flavors and aromas, the “vision” of nature as I add a drop of raw honey to sweeten the moment, the feeling of “peace” that engulfs me as I wrap my hands around the warm cup and bring it to my lips to enjoy the fruition of my preparations.
Truly a zen moment and one I enjoy at least twice a day.
I’ve grown herbs, dried herbs but never really started growing and harvesting herbs for the purpose of medicinal and culinary uses.
Most of my herbs and tea blends I purchase on line from MountainRoseHerbs.com. I love their blends and their huge selection of herbs and more. And, I’ve quite the supply on hand.
For quite a while I’ve been on the lookout for a cool, vintage storage cabinet type piece to create an apothecary cabinet to display and store my earthy treasures. Every now and then I would stumble across something that I thought might work but never got that “this is it” feeling so I’d continue my search.
Recently, on a trip to Lisa’s Antique Mall in Auburn, Illinois I found another piece, actually three pieces, that I thought would be perfect. Now, Greg doesn’t share my enthusiasm for old, vintage furniture. So when I would point them out to him he’d just shrug and say, “get it if you want it”. Hmmm, that doesn’t help solidify a “this it it” feeling. So I hemmed and hawed with indecision. Greg went out to the jeep for a fit measurement to be sure we could haul it home. He came back and gave me the thumbs up. We put our heads together to discuss an offer and came up with a number. But in the end, as usual, I had talked myself out of it.
Well, all this took place about two weeks before our wedding anniversary. Imagine my surprise when Greg disappeared for a few hours and upon returning told me I “had” to go out to the jeep, he had something he wanted to show me. Yep, the cabinet. So cool but the real gift is the gem of a husband I have.
So now I have the start of an apothecary cabinet. I love it. And, I think MountainRoseHerbs.com has been loving me lately, too, as I fill my shelves with herbal goodness.
Now my goal is to expand my herbal knowledge and continue to work on creating my very own herb and flower garden that is not only aesthetically pleasing but also with culinary and medicinal benefits and regenerative in nature. Not to mention more foraging for beneficial plants that grow wild and untamed. Cool places in which to further enjoy some Zen moments.
Then there’s my love of incense which has piqued my creative curiosity with thoughts of blending and forming my own little cones of sensory delights. But I’ll save that for another day. Right now I am very happy with the incense from LeftOverHippies.etsy.com. Hazel’s blends are perfectly earthy and spicy and the best I have ever enoyed. And, enjoy them I do on a regular basis.
As I grow older I find myself changing my ideas and ways of living in ways I’d never imagined. It’s refreshing and peaceful and amazing this life. And, change can lead to growth and experiences and joy you’d never imagine.
And, so I leave you now with Blessings for a joyful journey, a few ideas for perfect Zen moments, and a fruity herbal iced tea recipe…..
daily; read inspirational, deep, thought provoking books. I am currently reading Wayne W. Dyer’s “There’s a Spiritual Solution to Every Problem” Great read!
have a tea ritual like the one I explained in my opening here
take a walk in the country, breathe deep, look beyond what you seen in front of you, and listen for the sounds that aren’t obvious
think of someone you know, maybe even someone you don’t know well, look beyond their appearance and the little you know about them; think of their spirit and send them blessings
This recipe is from “The Medical Medium” by Anthony William and an excerpt from a recent post from his Facebook page.
“Lemon Balm Wild Blueberry Iced Tea
1 cup frozen wild blueberries
1/2 cup maple syrup
3 tbsp lemon juice
4 lemon balm tea bags https://amzn.to/2FyeF04
4 cups of water
Ice, to serve
Handful of fresh lemon balm, for garnish
Place the wild blueberries, maple syrup and lemon juice in a medium-sized saucepan. Cook over low heat until the wild blueberries are mushy, about 5 minutes.
Add the water and bring to a simmer. Turn the heat off, add the tea bags and allow to steep for 10 minutes. Pour everything through a fine-mesh sieve into a pitcher or bowl, using the back of a spoon to squeeze out juice from the blueberries and tea bags. Chill the tea for about an hour in the fridge, then serve over ice with fresh lemon balm for garnish.
Lemon balm: Kills viruses, bacteria, and other pathogenic microorganisms inside the liver. Makes a better environment in the intestinal tract, which supports the delivery of cleaner nutrients from the gut to the liver. Lemon balm calms the nerves of the liver, causing it to be less spasmodic, agitated, and angry, while also calming the nerves inside of the intestinal lining, which lowers toxic heat inside the liver. It also supports the adrenals, which makes the liver less toxic.
Wild blueberries: Contain dozens of undiscovered antioxidants, including anthocyanin varieties. There’s not just one pigment inside a wild blueberry; there are dozens of pigments not yet researched or studied. The wild blueberry is to the liver as mother’s milk is to a baby. Not only do wild blueberries have the ability to grab on to plenty of troublemakers, they also hold on to them as they leave the liver, in a way that most other healing foods cannot. The pigments in wild blueberries have the ability to saturate deep into liver cells and cross cell walls and membranes inside the liver, spreading their blue everywhere. Wild blueberries enhance the intestinal tract, feeding good bacteria there, which benefits the liver greatly.”
So, let your wild self free, enjoy new journeys and adventures and always look beyond for the glory of each and every moment.
Maybe you just simply smiled at someone and you made a connection. And that person smiled back and said Hi. A simple action followed by a simple word and a new friendship relationship is built.
I’ve had the pleasure on a few occasions to meet a few people by chance. And those unlikely meetings have blossomed into the most wonderful relationships.
My husband! The chances that we’d meet were unlikely but a connection was made and we are living together Happily Ever After.
New friends…..you know who you are! Although we live hundreds of miles apart we’ve established the very strong bond of a true, real lasting friendship.
Old friends……you know who you are! Although we may have drifted apart over the years, as life takes us down different roads and new journeys, we still manage to find our way back to one another, even if only for a moment or two…..always we remain with each other in heart and spirit.
Friends of friends……you may not know who you are but I do! I appreciate knowing you through my relationships with others.
Think of the hundreds or maybe thousands of people we run into by chance. Some we may never see again but there may have been a tiny flicker of acknowledgement. A small catalyst that could ignite a forever relationship.
Think of the thousands or millions of people we will never meet but touch our lives through ways we will never even realize. The person who packages up your Amazon order; or cooked your delicious meal; or cleaned your hotel room; or hauled away your trash; or made your new dress……. Do you ever consider these people? I try to.
There are so many people that touch our lives. So many that it would be impossible to have a meaningful relationship with all of them. But how awesome if we could…….make a special place for each other. And we can and should, even if only to share a smile, a hello, a thank you. Because, as the saying goes, nice matters.
My “people” are so very special. I appreciate each and every one of you. What a delight it is when you reach out and share a little piece of yourself and suddenly a new relationship begins to blossom……
Life is a journey and the people we meet along the way become a part of our narrative……..in ways we may or may not ever know. Seek out and embrace the good in each and every interaction. The life you live is your story, the people you meet are your characters, each day is a new chapter. Make it a best seller!
a green or brown film on the surface of bronze or similar metals, produced by oxidation over a long period.
a gloss or sheen on a surface resulting from age or polishing.
“the dining table will acquire a warm patina with age”
the impression or appearance of something.
“he carries the patina of old money and good breeding”
I found my love for creating patina pieces about four years ago. Starting with pre-cut brass and copper metal blanks, I did a little on-line research on patina how to’s and started experimenting.
My first creations were patina’d earrings.
Don’t you just love their unique colors and asymmetrical designs! So eclectic! Little jewelry works of arts. A must have for the jewelry connoisseur, don’t you think!
From earrings, I went on to creating a few cuff bracelets and rings.
Rather than purchasing pre-cut metal cuffs, I wanted to actually make the cuffs. Hand-cut from a sheet of brass, copper or bronze. I experimented with different gauges of metal 22, 20, and 18. And, in my opinion, I think the 20 gauge has a nice weight and sturdiness to it. The 22 gauge is a thinner metal and makes a more lightweight cuff. The 18 gauge makes a somewhat thicker, heavier cuff. And, like Goldilocks with the Three Bears, the gauge, weight, and size of a cuff comes down to a personal preference. Yet, no matter the gauge of the metal, with a gentle squeeze/pressure each cuff adjusts to a desired fit.
I also tried different lengths and widths for a variety of sizes. Although the cuffs are somewhat adjustable, I noticed that a one size fits most isn’t always the case. Not all of us are average. Case in point, I’m 5′, 10 1/2″, above average height for a woman often leaving me with just wishful want of some clothes that are made as one size fits most. So, with my cuffs I have a few different lengths; 5 3/4″, 6″, 6 1/2″, and 7″ allowing for a more encompassing one size fits most.
After cutting my metal strips into different lengths and widths, I then sand them, by hand, to smooth the edges. I could use power tools to cut, sand, and polish the metal but there’s just something about creating a piece step by step by hand. Realizing the strength of my hands as I cut through the metal. Feeling the joy from that last snip as the metal falls away. Sensing a slight heat as the metal warms up with the glide of the sandpaper over the rough edges. The smoothness felt when I run my fingers over the sanded piece to rule out sharp edges. It’s not just the end result that makes the piece special, it’s the process and the journey of the creation. A little bit of heart and soul along with a bit of elbow grease goes into each creation.
Once the metal is sanded smooth the strips are shaped into cuffs. This process requires a rawhide hammer, a heavy metal mandrel, a little stamina and a bit of patience. Hammer, Hammer, Hammer not just to create the shape but to strengthen the metal, as well. This will help the piece better maintain its final shape.
After the cuff is shaped it’s ready for the patina magic to happen. Nope, I do not use patina paints, polishes, waxes or dyes. I use a chemical process to expedite the development of the patina vs waiting for the every day elements of moisture, air, heat and humidity it takes for metal to develop its patina over time.
I patiently, and sometimes not so patiently, check my pieces to see what designs the patina is creating. Sometimes I pull them early. Sometimes I leave them overnight. Sometimes I remove the patina and start all over. But after it’s all said and done each patina comes out as a unique, stunning work of art. Some I like better than others. And I love to watch how other people are attracted to one design over another……..decisions, decisions!
After the patina has dried, I then apply a wax coat to seal and maintain the patina. The wax adds a nice shiny, glossy finish.
Lately, I’ve moved on to creating unique patina pendant statement necklaces. Following the same process I did for the cuffs, I created the pendants. Each is hand cut, hand sanded, patina’d and polished.
The next step with the necklaces was finding the perfect gemstones. Sigh, I just love gemstones! Then came the Match Game! Picking the perfect gemstone to complement each patina pendant and adding a bit of fancy chain for the finishing touch!
And, finally, these cool, unique, and unusual Statement Necklaces! No two are exactly the same! They are artsy, eclectic, classy and eye-catching. Sure to grab some attention and start a conversation or two!
And there you have it. A few of the steps involved in creating some of my unique jewelry pieces.
The jewelry I create is available for purchase at https://www.etsy.com/shop/JudysTreehouse
It’s been a while since I’ve posted here. Fall is a busy time of year for us here on the farm with Harvest beginning late August and running through October if we’re lucky enough to have all of the crops in by then.
And, with October comes time to batten down the hatches for winter; raking leaves, cleaning up the gardens, stowing away garden tools, yard decorations, porch furniture…..(although I must admit I wasn’t real good about all of that this year).
Followed by November which arrived with unexpected early snow showers. And then there’s the beginning preparations for the upcoming holidays.
December arrives with joyous celebrations, family get togethers, last minute shopping, decorating, baking cookies, cooking, cleaning, visiting guests and parties; pure joy mixed in with maybe a little stress?
January, 2019 has come and almost gone. Time really does fly. Trust me, I’ve witnessed it! It’s been cold this month……very cold…..extremely cold……bitterly cold! We’ve had some snow……..a lot of snow……with a generous topping of ice.
My husband has done a fine job of keeping us “dug out” much to my dismay. Me? I wanted to stay cocooned in the soft blanket of white serenity and beauty that was surrounding us……..until the spring thaw! If you live in an area with snow, you may understand; or, you may not. But, if you do get to experience a snowy day or two and haven’t done so already take a moment to find the joy, it will take your breath away will all of its beauty. Bundle up, go outside, breathe in the scent of the icy air and snow covered ground, listen to the quiet, see the sparkles of light on the icy surfaces. It truly is a winter wonderland………
If you don’t “HAVE” to get out in it. I understand, too, the potential dangers this beautiful, snowy world can harbor.
For those of you who do not care for winter……..Think Spring! It is just around the corner…..
Now January is coming to an end along with a lot of New Year’s Resolutions I would imagine. I don’t do the New Year’s Resolution thing but I do have good intentions. And, one of my good intentions this year is to post here a little more often. Posting gives me a little time to reflect on events that have come and gone, times cherished, things I could’ve, should’ve, would’ve done. It’s a place to explore and share my creative spirit, some dreams, thoughts, ideas. Just a little place to store a few memories and to share a bit of myself with those of you who may be interested in knowing a little bit more about the person behind JudysTreehouse.
So there you have it. A few reasons (excuses) for my brief absence here along with my good intentions moving forward.
Do you journal or blog? If so, isn’t it rewarding….both during and after? If not, maybe give it a try…….you never know where your past journeys may take you moving forward.
Fall, Autumn……my most favorite time of year. The days get shorter, the sky takes on a different shade of blue, the leaves start falling; to me, things just seem to slow down a bit.
We’re in full harvest mode here at the farm. Picking corn and cutting beans.
Here in the Midwest the days are still long and hot. But, soon, the nights will take on a chill, the leaves will turn brilliant shades of colors, comfort foods will start simmering on the stove, sweaters, jackets and boots will come out of storage.
Are you ready for the changing season, too? Here are a few pieces I’ve created to spice up your fall wardrobe. The beautiful fall, autumn season will soon be upon us!
Years ago, before I even thought about making jewelry, I was in a restaurant in downtown Springfield, IL. The hostess had on a long necklace with an awesome large cross pendant that totally caught my eye. Determined to find one, yet unsuccessful at the time, I am happy to now have a nice selection of long and short, large and small cross pendant necklaces for men and for women to offer here at JudysTreehouse.
The summer days are ticking by. Beautiful sounds, changing scenery, gorgeous colors, earthy scents!
I love summertime…………
And, I love taking walks. I’ve started this quest to walk 500 miles…….just a few miles at a time mind you…..I’m not Wonder Woman……although, aren’t we all full of wonder! Yes, we are. Sometimes we just have to dig deep down inside to reminder ourselves. I find walking is a great way to find peace of mind and gratitude for all of the beauty and greatness this life has to offer.
https://www.facebook.com/judystreehouse (“Like” and “Follow” JudysTreehouse on Facebook. From time to time I’ll post items I have in the works, new items, fashion ideas, and just plain cool “shares” of things I find beautiful and interesting.”