My mom, the gift giver

My mom is spectacular gift giver. She’s given me amazing things over the years like:

  • An opal ring I pined for but thought was completely out of my reach.
  • A beautiful pair of opal earrings I’m afraid to wear because if I lost one, it would break my heart.
  • Tickets to Miss Saigon that she promptly took from me for safe keeping only to lose, ironically (but she worked it out with the theater because my mom can talk people into almost anything – it’s her superpower).
  • Clothes, boots, shoes, etc. that I’ve barely hinted at liking and then was thrilled to receive.

I mean, I could go on and on and on, but you get the point.

What makes her a spectacular gift giver is that she:

  1. Pays attention. I’ll make an off-hand remark about something and she’ll remember it, use it, and shock me with her follow-through – sometimes months later.
  2. Loves to make people happy. I think truly good gift givers delight in finding that perfect something for their loved ones.

Before Christmas 2012 I’d mentioned that I was looking for a very simple silver necklace, but that I was having a hard time finding the perfect thing. Bam. My mom nailed it. And I wore that necklace almost daily for nine months.

Then, during the hub-bub of packing up my place while the St. Vrain River was rising behind my house this fall threatening to flood my home, the necklace fell on the floor, became a tangled mess and got a knot I just couldn’t get out. I was pretty bummed about it. Honestly, I have a ton of jewelry and wear about five percent of it. I become attached to a few things and they become my signature pieces.

So, on Christmas Eve, after everyone else had left or gone to bed, my mom, as excited as a little kid, says, “Hey! Want to open a present early? I get to pick it, though,” and hands me a little box from a very clever source…

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Get it? As in the St. Vrain River making up for the situation. She’s pretty great, my mom.

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Etsy Shop – SigalitAlcalai

Wow. It’s been a REALLY long time since I did one of these posts! I used to peruse Etsy all the time when I was bored. Now it’s Pintrest. Blame Pintrest.

My mom sent me a link to this shop the other day. Initially, I was not all that impressed. But then a few things caught my eye. And then I started to notice the intricacies in her work and fell in love with some amazing pieces!

These are my favorites:

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Candy for your hand

When I lost my ring recently I launched a quest to find a new one. See, I’m a lover of pretty large jewelry and not having a giant ring on my right hand felt so, so, so very wrong. So very wrong.

I wanted something handmade and unique, like the ring I’d lost. It couldn’t be ordinary or something I would see on anyone else. So I headed to Etsy to poke around and found my new favorite shop, HardCandyGems. I don’t even know where to start. The stones are amazing, the setting is so unique, and the prices are just right. There are so many rings on here that I love, it’s hard to pick just a few to highlight, but here goes:

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Considering I found my precious (nerd alert), I’ll have to wear rings from HardCandyGems judiciously. I wouldn’t want to offend my ring and have it take off on me again. But, I did end up buying something from Sara (who’s been lovely to work with) and have my eyes on a few others I’d like to own. I just couldn’t help it!

#Reverb11 – Learn

{For the month of December a fellow blogger, Melanie, and I are leading  #reverb11 – an online initiative that prompts people to reflect on the past year and look towards the new one.}

December 11. Learn: What did you learn to do or make in 2011? What would you like to learn to do or make in 2012?

I’ve never been the crafty type. I’ll look at craft ideas or DIY stuff online and think, “Well heck! I could make that, right? How cute!” And then I never do. I think it’s because I get nervous that I’ll royally screw it up and will have wasted time and money.

I resisted Pintrest for several months in an effort to avoid yet another online time sink. Then I gave in and saw things like this and this. And I loved them and so I made them. Successfully, which has given me confidence to make other things.

Next year, I will be making the following things:

What did you make this year? What are you planning on making in 2012?

5 things I’m loving right now…

Well, today marks my fifth day off of work in a row. All I can say is aaaaaahhhhhh! This past weekend was great! We enjoyed a nice holiday on Thursday and then plenty of rest and relaxation mixed in with getting stuff done. My parents have been out of town, so we’ve been watching their new pooch, Yaya (more on that later), and she and Stella have been a delight. Here are my favorite bits:

  1. A lovely meal prepared by the manfriend and I and shared with good peeps. Somehow we timed everything perfectly and cooked at a pace that made it a relaxing day.
  2. Long walks with Stella and Yaya. The weather was amazing and these two girls walk well together.
  3. An afternoon at the movies to see Breaking Dawn. Yes, I’m a Twilight fan. NOT a Twihard, just a fan. It’s a pretty good movie, ya’ll.
  4. A relaxing afternoon making these. I still can not manage to make this without all the hex nuts going wonky. It’s about to drive me mad!
  5. Leftovers. We’ve had a lovely soup and some amazing tacos with our leftovers. What did you do with your leftovers?
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