Thursday, September 30, 2010

Shop updates...

I spent a bit of time last night adding more items into the New Cinnamon Sticks Website!

Things like this beautiful Vintage style Cross

My VINTAGE LETTERS necklaces with a pop of color

My Layered Ovals necklace, this one hasn't made it over to etsy yet so only in the NEW SHOP

This one I just had to share because I loved how it turned out soooo much! This was an
Eclectic Family necklace I made for a customer. This one really came out adorable I hope she loved it as much as I do.
I have to say hands down this is still my favorite design to create! Each one is different and every single one is just gorgeous!!!
I'm hoping to get a bit more added into the NEW SHOP this weekend.
Next week I will announce my Christmas Order cut off date. I know it seems a bit early, but I've got to plan ahead... and it really is never to0 early to start shopping for Christmas that way you are not overwhelmed by bills come January!
Wont you consider shopping with us this Christmas?!! Pretty please :)

Girls night!

Last week I was able to sneak off for a couple of hours to catch up with Monica and enjoy some girl time. we had dinner at the Mission Inn, and chatted over coffee to catch up on life.

Monica and I have been friends since our first awkward year as freshman in high school. We have seen each other through so many major life events. We have seen each other grow into strong creative women.

Monica is a published writer and college professor.
When the economy took a turn for the worse and many of the Universities cut their staff, she lost her job.

After my first assistant didn't work out, I needed help with my shop, and she needed some part time work while she applied for new positions. Monica came to work with me for a bit last spring, shipping packages, and answering e-mails, and even at times cleaning oxidation off of completed jewelry. Don't you miss those black finger tips Monica?

In August she received a sudden job offer from a University here in So. Cal, then a couple of weeks later, she received a job offer from a second University here in So. Cal.!

So now Monica is a busy gal teaching and commuting between two Universities.

Congrats Monica! I'm so happy for you :) Miss having your help! But soo happy for you!!

Do you get a chance to head out for some girl time? What do you do on girls night?

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Bringing 'em back!

I frequently get e-mails and convos asking about older designs that are no longer in my shop, so after some consideration, I decided to bring a few back!

Remember the bar necklace that had 4 sides? I'll have that one back in stock mid October, after I find a more reliable supplier for the square wire I use to create them.

Back in stock now are my copper initial necklaces. In light of the continued sluggish economy I wanted to offer something that is budget friendly and still super cute!

These guys make Great stocking stuffers (hint hint ;) Find them here and here.

One of the old designs I get asked about more often than any other lately, are my wax seal necklaces.
The Fleur Di Lis was the original one I carried. It's some where here on the blog in the archives (way way back), but I didn't get a chance to hunt the photo down. I discontinued it about a year ago when our seal stamp broke, but after a long search I found a manufacturer and ordered a set of custom font seals! I'm still on the hunt for another vintage Fleur di lis seal. Hopefully soon for those that asked :)

They are elegant and regal, and I just LOVE them! They pair beautifully with our bright chalcedony stones, or are great just on their own.

You can find them HERE

The ones with the Gem stones are HERE

The ones with no stones can be found HERE :)

Is there a discontinued design you love and wish I would bring back? Let me know I'd love to hear!!


Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Mr. T

No not that big hulking guy with a bad mohawk and tons of gold chains.

Our Mr. T is soft spoken, a little shy, inquisitive and inventive, and today He is 8!

Our Mr.T is a gentle sweet soul. He is always looking out for others, asking how he can help take care of his siblings. He builds and creates, and invents daily, and describes his creations with such passion. He amazes us daily and brings so much Joy to our family.

Happy Birthday Baby! We love you!

Dad & Mom

Monday, September 27, 2010

A bushel of apples (or 5!)

Every year we say we are going to go apple picking and every year something comes up. Between Rob's work and his Masters classes and my holiday orders, and 3 of the kids have birthdays in the fall all about 2 weeks apart. It's a busy busy time of year!

So this year I vowed come heck or high water we are going apple picking!! I think that I tested the fates though, because the day we committed to go it was 109 degrees at home!

Fortunately even though we are only 20 minutes from the apple orchards, the altitude change was enough, so it was only 89.

We loaded the kids up in the van and trekked off to Riley's Farm.
Each of the kids got their own bag. We headed out in to the orchards and it was just heavenly! The smell of the apple and pear tress mixed with the mountain air and the creek the snaked it's way through the farm.

(the baby was was on my back in his pack so he didn't make it into the pictures)

The farm was adorable with old log buildings, old tractors, and hay wagons. I got stung by a bee snapping this picture so I gave up taking pictures of the buildings.

The trip wouldn't have been complete with out stopping into the general store for a little sweet treat, some fresh apple cider, and yummy apple butter, and pumpkin butter. The kids had a great time and they can't wait to start baking!

I think an apple pie is in order, and maybe a tart, and an apple pear crisp, and some apple sauce...We have more than enough apples for it all!

What did you do this weekend?

Friday, September 24, 2010

Winner and a guest post :)

Winner of the 3 stacking rings chosen by Mr. is comment #4 Rhonda! E-mail me Rhonda and we can chat.

As one of the fellow Queen Bees I was asked to write a post for the Queen Bee Blog

I usually keep my posts pretty short and simple. This one is a bit longer so grab a cup of coffee, or tea and cozy up :)

Here it is...

Super Mom

"Wow! You must be super mom." I hear this all the time just after people find out that I'm a mom of 6 and a small business owner. I tend to have the same reaction every time. I giggle uncomfortably, and say, "no not really". Shuffling my feet and trying to steer the conversation away from me. In my head I'm thinking..."OH you haven't seen me when I loose my temper with the kids, and become the ugly mommy monster. You haven't seen the pile of dust bunnies in the corner of my living room that seems to multiply, well, like bunnies" I AM NO SUPER MOM!

How often do we beat ourselves down? As a mom and as a woman.

There was a clip on the news the other night, that said a typical stay at home mom works the equivalent of 16 or more jobs. Oprah once shared how much a stay at home mom would earn if she received a paycheck. I don't remember the exact dollar amount but it was huge!

As moms we keep our house in order and make it a home.
We take the kids to and from school, and the doctors, and play dates, and... We fix 3 healthy (most of the time) meals a day. Do the grocery shopping, with baby in tow. Clean the dirty butts. Stay up late with the hot glue gun in hand helping to finish that project that is , due tomorrow at school. And on and on it goes.
But beyond the super genius running of our house hold, we have super powers. We have the power to chase away bad dreams at midnight. We have the power to kiss away boo boos. We have the power to dry away tears and heal hearts with a hug. We have the power to LOVE. And that makes any mom super mom.

So yes sometimes I get overwhelmed, I lock myself in the bathroom and pretend I don't hear the ruckus on the other side of the door, and I have a good cry. Then I stand up and put on my big girl pants, or my mommy cape, step out and I return order to my home. Cause I'm super mom and I rock!

So let's stop beating our selves down, thinking we are just not up to par.
It doesn't matter if you are a mom of 1 or a mom of 10, dust off your capes and wear 'em proudly! Cause you're super Mom too, and you so ROCK!


Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Something new and unique!

Another design that was inspired by my weekend at SPARK!

This one was inspired by the amazing decorations draping from the ceiling all over the venue.

I haven't decided what type of chain to use with it, but as soon as I do I'll have it listed in my shop.

Next up will be a ribbon pendant like one of these cuties above!
I'm curious, what would you do if you had a weekend to yourself?

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Happy Fall!

As if on cue the fog rolled in this morning. It's cool and crisp out side and I'm cozy and warm inside sipping my Earl Grey tea, and daydreaming about going apple picking with the kids this Saturday.

(I'll have to ignore the fact that they are predicting it will be over 100 this Saturday, we're going apple picking and that's that ;)

Because it's cool enough to put on a sweater today, because I'm looking forward to a warm caramel latte later today, and because I love all my wonderful customers and blog readers I have two giveaways for you today.

First head on over to the QUEEN BEE MARKET blog. They are hosting a giveaway for each of the vendors that will be there in Nov. This week is my turn :)

There will be SOOO many AMAZING and TALENTED ladies sharing their wears if you're in Southern California, (or even if your not) Mark your Calendar for November 12 and 13th, the perfect chance to do all your Christmas shopping!!!

Now, because 2 giveaways are better than one.

Leave a comment here for a chance to win a set of 3 stacking rings!

Just leave a comment and tell me either what you would have stamped on the ring, or your favorite fall memory.

I'll choose a winner at random on Friday!



Monday, September 20, 2010

Is it Fall Yet?!

I am oh soooo ready for fall weather.
Ready to pull out my favorite chunky sweaters
Ready cozy up at night with a hot cup o' caramel apple cider and fuzzy slippers.
Ready to bake! Breads and pies.
Ready to be immersed in the heady scents of cinnamon and cloves.
Ready to cuddle up with my honey on date night, wrapped in our thick soft blanket and watch a funny movie.
Ready to take the kids apple picking, and to the pumpkin patch.
Ready to breath in the crisp cool breezes and changing leaves.
I'm ready!

Nothing Gold Can Stay by Robert Frost
Nature's first green is gold,
Her hardest hue to hold.
Her early leafs a flower;
But only so an hour.
Then leaf subsides to leaf.
So Eden sank to grief,
So dawn goes down to day.
Nothing gold can stay.
I love Frosts' poems! I have 2 necklaces in the works both inspired by his poems. They are almost ready to be unveiled. I can't wait!
What do you look forward to most in Fall?

Sunday, September 19, 2010

Um...Did that really just happen?!!

Have you ever had one of those small moments in life that just seem too surreal, like maybe you stepped into a sitcom?

I've been fighting off a nasty cold all week. Yesterday I gave in and decided I should lay down and take a much needed nap.

I climbed into bead and sank down on to my pillow.

Content and comfy I started to drift off. Somewhere in that blissful place where awareness starts to fade and sleep takes hold I heard a scratching noise on my pillow. Sure it was my hand brushing my pillow or the beginnings of a dream I ignored it and re-adjusted my head. Scratch scratch scratch...

Jared into awareness I gingerly picked up my head and lifted my pillow.

Nothing under it, so I opened my pillow case to peek in, and I swear I screamed so loud I'm sure the neighbors heard it through closed windows.
I dropped my pillow sure what i had just seen was a ginormous centipede.
Knowing I had to do something about it I picked up my pillow again and peeked back inside.

What a moment before I was sure was an evil centipede with fangs dripping ready to strike (yes i know they don't have fangs, but really, they're creepy) turned out to be a little bitty Lizard!

Poor guy, I'm sure he was way more freaked out to have been found than I was to find him, but seriously?! A LIZARD IN MY PILLOW CASE?!!!
It was one of those moments where i had to stop and say, did that really just happen?

Rob swears he didn't put it there. Though he likes a good piratical joke it's not his style to frighten an innocent animal, his wife yes, a bitty lizard no.

I asked the boys if anyone brought home new pets that they didn't tell mommy about, they were as shocked to see him as i was.

I guess he just wandered in with us one day and thought "huh, that looks like a good place to hide".

I caught the little guy and gently set him outside in my garden.

In my rush to catch him and get him outside uninjured I didn't get a photo.

Not sure who took this one but I just found it through google free pics :)

Oh and I didn't get a nap, would you sleep after all that?

Has anything surreal happened to you this weekend?


Friday, September 17, 2010

Bloom... born from a SPARK

Inspiration flooded my spirit on my drive home from SPARK.

It must have been a combination of of creating with kindred souls, blissfully gorgeous decorations, the intoxicating lovely music, and the amazing beauty of the country side.

Twice I pulled off of the highway, grabbed my sketchbook and scribbled feverishly bringing the first signs of life to the ideas floating in my imagination for new designs.

As I drove past mountains whose names and history remain mysteries to me, I was immersed in shades of deep forest green, earthy rusted brown, flaming orange and red, and oh the sweet golden yellow of endless fields of wild sunflowers!

This is the first of several designs born that weekend...

Whimsical earthy and unique I LOVE it!

Where do you find your inspiration in life?



Wednesday, September 15, 2010

New in the shop!

Just listed over on etsy and soon to be listed on the website! I'll be working diligently over the next few nights to get the rest of the newbies in the shops.
Also to my photography winners, I'm working on getting to each request tonight :)

Spark No. 2 day 1 !!

I have to confess, I questioned my sanity as i set off for SPARK last Thursday night, it was 6:30pm as I climbed into my Honey's toyota, bags packed, quad espresso in hand (yes i said quad) ready to embark on the 9 hour drive to Utah.

"What the heck am I doing?" I thought. "I don't know a soul at this event." I decided just after setting off on the road to shrug off my insecure anxiety, if nothing else comes of the trip I at least got a bit of time to myself.

The drive out was silent and calming. The deep midnight sky, and occasional headlights of passing divers kept me company.

I was able to think in the silence, to plan new designs in my mind, to pray a full Rosary, and I belted my favorite tunes at the top of my lungs. Hey how would you stay awake at 1:30 am when the caffeine was wearing off?

I arrive at the B&B I stayed at for the first night at 4:30 am. Sydney the owner was sooo sweet. She left the front door unlocked for me and a lighted path to my room, where i dropped my bags and promptly passed out.

The next morning I woke up and swiftly got ready. I headed up to breakfast (which was delicious!!) and met a few ladies that would be attending spark. We chatted and then headed out into the gorgeous mountain side to drive off to SPARK.

I arrived at NOAH'S the venue. Excited I grabbed my purse, and camera, and bags of supplies.

We were greeted by these lovely banners and garland.

(you know I had stick this photo in again, it still makes me want to run off into a meadow belting out Mindy's happy music and spinning around like no ones watching!)

We registered and were presented with an adorable little swag bag filled with goodies.
(no pictures of it :(

We headed into the main hall and the decorations! Oh the decorations!!!! They were draping from the ceiling, bird cages, an adorable pink bike, garlands made from vintage board game pieces.... I could gush on and on about it.

We attended several classes and made pretty little things to take home.

The snack Bar! OH BLISS!!!! Large apothecary jars filled with candy shoppe goodness. Welcome back to my rear end 8 pounds I lost before coming! I'm a sucker for sour watermelon gummies, and they had a 2 foot jar full of them!

(this was the mini version of the snack bar, I didn't have a chance to snap pictures of the main one up stairs!)

The food was fabulous! (have I used enough exclamation points in this post? I don't think I have!!!)

After dinner they had mini mini classes but I was too tired from the drive so I snuck off with Wendy Witacre of Blue Lily photography to grab a coffee at Starbucks, and do a little window shopping at Anthropology. Anthropology swoon!
(Wendy sorry if i chatted your ear off in the car I blame it on the sleep deprivation mixed with strong coffee and copious amounts of watermelon sours ;)

We ended the night with a ...wait for it.... outdoor intimate concert by Mindy Gledhill!!!!!! Oh MY she is as adorable in person as I imagined she would be, and her music makes my heart giddy! Giddy giddy giddy!
and Yes, I do dance around my house belting out her songs like no one is watching, except my 2 year old who sports a "mommy's lost it" expression when I do, or maybe it's a "I'm not with that lady" look. either way he's stuck with me ;)

I think this post is long enough, so I'll gush about all the amazing ladies I met there tomorrow.


Monday, September 13, 2010


(isn't this picture dreamy! It's the kind of picture that makes me want to kick my shoes off and dance and spin in a field of wild flowers, I didn't doctor it at all, fresh off my camera :)

I'm back from SPARK and what an amazing weekend!!

I'm still a bit tired from the drive home, I have a very full e-mail/convo inbox that needs tending to, listings galore that need to be added in to each shop, and a 2 year old who is a bit mad at me for leaving him for 3 days , he needs to be cuddled :)
So I'll share about the event later this week but for today I thought I'd pop in and post up some of my favorite pictures from this weekend.

This was my favorite class. Wool felting!!! I always wondered how felting was done. Now I have a bag full of colorful wooly goodness to play with at home
OMGoodness!!!! The Food was wonderful, and this set up!!!!! They treated us royally.

The decorations were were A-MAZING!!! Vintage beauty everywhere!

I passed this truck on my drive in and thought is was just gorgeous. All rusted and beat up, with chippy blue and yellow paint, and these gigantic wooden pumpkins!!!!!!!
What did you get up to this weekend?


Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Creative minds....

I know I said blog posts would be scarce as I get ready for my trip tomorrow, but something came up yesterday and I felt compelled to post about about it.

Yesterday evening I noticed a large amount of traffic coming over to my blog from Lisa Leonard's blog, if you spend any time in blog land you know her.

She is a talented jewelry artist, devoted mom, and overall sweet soul.

Shortly after noticing the traffic coming in I received a very unpleasant e-mail from a lady (not Lisa!) telling me I should be ashamed of myself for copying Lisa's new design.
I headed over to Lisa's blog and sure enough she has a new camera design. Our two designs are so very similar.

I wrote to Lisa and we chatted briefly about it. Lisa knows it is a total coincidence "A case of creative minds think alike!" as she put it :) It was pleasure chatting with you Lisa! Thank you!

Just to explain for others to understand...

Custom steel stamps take a long time to create. A design must first be sketched, then sent to a tool maker. The tool maker takes a large steel shank and engraves the design either with lazers or hand tools. The stamp then must be hand ground for a clean finish, and then heat hardened and tempered. It's not a fast process and usually takes 2-3 weeks or longer to receive.

So now that that's all happily cleared up...

I'm so excited to show the completed piece I made for Mindy Gledhill! Click on her name to go see her wonderful video for her song Anchor!

and now I'm off to finish getting my orders out before I leave my honey and kiddies behind to have a lovely creative weekend and SPARK. Yes I have the slightest twinge of guilt leaving everyone behind, but the alone time will be wonderful!!

Do you ever feel guilty leaving your kiddies home and taking some alone time? We're so hard on ourselves as mothers aren't we?



Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Crazy Lady!

So I'm feeling like the proverbial headless chicken. Sooooo much to do. Calgone take me away!

We had another computer failure this weekend. My hubby finally caved and bought an upgraded version of an Antivirus program. THANK YOU honey! Perhaps that will take care of some of my headaches as well as e-mail issues!

So that taken care of I have TONS and TONS and TONS of listings to get up in both shops, but I think they might have to wait till next week.
This week I will be busy getting meals prepared for my family to eat while I'm away at SPARK. Finishing orders so they are all shipped before i go and I can feel like I have earned the right to relax :)
Oh and the many many many convos waiting for my response...that's on tonight's agenda. Never enough time.

But I couldn't help teasing you all a little bit with a sneak peek of some new designs that will join the others in my shop next week..

The New Capture Life Necklace!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Are you as excited as i am!!!! I had this stamp custom made for me back in June and I am just now getting a chance to photograph it. I LOVE the whimsy of the heart and the sweet little camera.

Ohhhhh this one I am just as excited about! It's a gemstone crested cuff bracelet! This one i have stamped with Faith Hope Love and Peace (gifts of the Spirit)
They will be able to be personalized with name or words of your choice and gemstones of your choice as well.
It's just a stunning piece! This one will be on my wrist this weekend :)

This little one is just a sneak peek of a gift I made for the oh so talented Mindy Gledhill who will be performing at SPARK this weekend!!! Yippeeeee. When I'm done this will have a little sterling silver balloon above it, Adorable! More pics as soon as I finish it!

I'm off to find my head, get it back on straight and get down to work ;)
How has your week started out?

Saturday, September 4, 2010

Busy Busy Bee!

Blog post will probably be scarce over the next week.

I've been busy tending to an injured little boy :( We're still not sure what happened but our oldest son was either bit by a nasty bug, or had a cut that's turned into a big mess. Poor guy! We're hoping this new round of antibiotics takes care of it. I'll spare you the photos, it's not pretty.

I've been spending many hours at my work bench getting orders out as quick as possible (it's so nice not to be behind on orders!) and I've been making more rings, check them out...

This is my new hidden message ring! I've had TONS and TONS of request for one and I finally had a chance to make some so I can have photos to list. You will of course be able to personalize yours :)
This is my new spinner ring, also known a s a worry ring. The center band spins freely around the main band. I have left this one shiny and the letters with out oxidation because I loved the shiny look, but I'll have an oxidized one soon too.
I stamped this one with "be still and know" on the large band, and "faith" on the spinning band.
Yes the irony of this message on a "worry ring" was intentional.
Don't we all need to be reminded to let go of our worries and Be still and know He is God, He will care for us!

Now because I've been taking care of my little man, normal day to day life, and spending as much time as possible at my work bench I haven't had time to list all the new goodies I've made.

I'm hoping to get them up on Monday, and I might just need to have a sale to celebrate! Check back on Monday to see ;)

Oh and did I mention I leave for SPARK this upcoming week!!!!! Did i mention how completely EXCITED i am to go!!!!!!!!!!! It's about a 9 hour drive up to UT which I am soooo looking forward to. Just me and the open road; well and Dave Matthews (shhh don't tell my hubby he's coming with me) along with Mindy Gledhill, and a bit of The Grateful Dead, and Gomez.... Bliss!

What are you looking forward to this weekend or week?


Wednesday, September 1, 2010

My new assistant ;)

No it's not really this little guy, though he wishes he could get into all my tools, and silver, and ribbons, oh and the torch, he LOVES my torch. He is very disappointed that i wont let him touch the's so unfair!

He did however enjoy unloading all the envelopes from their box, and taking all my old letter stamps out one by one, putting them back in their box one by one, taking them back out. Oh the Joy in the simple things!
I'd like to welcome my new assistant LeAnn! LeAnn has been working hard learning the ropes over the last couple of weeks.
Monica (my last assistant) has been looking and looking for a job with a University to teach English or Creative writing. After months of applying I'm happy to say she was hired last month here in So. Cal. YAY Monica! I'm so happy for you, sad that your not here each day, I miss the chit chat while we worked, but happy you got the job!
Hopefully LeAnn isn't as camera shy as Monica so I can post a welcome picture :)