"If I find in myself desires which nothing in this world can satisfy, the only logical explanation is that I was made for another world."

-C.S. Lewis

Sunday, December 27, 2009

From Etsy's Front Page...

So this weekend while I was enjoying myself with my family and not watching my shop, my copper spiral ring was on the front page of Etsy! I have been patiently waiting to be featured and when it finally happens I am not even around to see it! Hopefully it won't be the last time.

Monday, December 21, 2009

Yule Goodies~

*Our resident snow fairy*

Well, I had the most wonderful weekend with my family. Part of what I love about this time of year is the nice times at home wrapping, baking, making cards, and playing in the snow. I am a homebody, I'll leave the busy traffic and last minute shopping madness to others. Obviously, the holidays have become much too commercial, and in my opinion there is nothing like a freshly baked plate of cookies, or a gift that is made from the heart. Our tree has become heavily laden with paper snowmen, and santas that my daughter, the budding artist, has cut out and decorated. Apparently every square inch of our tree wasn't covered, so she decided to fill it up. My husband was on wrapping duty this weekend and our tree now looks like it is being held up by presents.

I spent alot of my weekend in the kitchen. I made snickerdoodles, chocolate-pecan fudge, yummy homemade turtles, my famous salsa, and chicken spaghetti. I still have to bake some bread, make a pecan pie, and a potato recipe that I will take for our big holiday dinner later in the week. I thought I would share my turtle recipe with you all. They are SO simple and delicious! If you need a last minute treat to give away or take to a gathering, these are amazing and easy peasy.


*waffle pretzel

*Rolos (any carmel filled chocolates will work)

*halved pecans

Heat oven to 250ยบ. Lay pretzels out on baking sheet and place one carmel/chocolate on top. Bake until the chocolate just starts to melt. This was about 3 minutes in my oven. If you let it go too long, the carmel spills out and won't set up. Remove from oven and immediately press a pecan half into the top. Let them cool and firm up.

These are so delicious, I had a hard time keeping my hands off of them! But then again, I have absolutely no will power when it comes to chocolate. I have given up trying to fit into that little dress this holiday and decided to enjoy myself! Curvy is in...at least that is what I am telling myself! I hope you and your family have a wonderful holiday!

Monday, December 14, 2009

All Eye Want for Christmas...

I took a quick minute to take a photo of my lovely "star pupils" (did I really just write that?!) before they head out into the big wide world and their new owners. These were headed out, amongst other goodies, in today's order shipment.

I recieved an early Yule gift today from my husband (we are as bad as children and can NEVER wait to open gifts!) My wonderful man bought me a cd I have been wanting for ages...Teribus! If you are not familiar with this trio, I suggest you become so. (http://www.teribusmusic.com/) We first heard them at a renaissance festival years ago. Everywhere we went that day we could feel the rhythm of the huge drum resonating through our bones, it was awesome! Their name is Scottish...Teribus was the name of a legendary Scottish bagpiper who marched with the troops on the battlefield. His music would stir them into a frenzy and keep their spirits up. It is the perfect music to keep me going through all the craziness of the holiday season!

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Home Again, Home Again Jiggety Jig

Well, our successful roadtrip is behind us now, and all that remains are the hundreds of pictures that I took, and one huge mountain of laundry. Despite the fun and excitement of vacation, the mountain of laundry and the task of unpacking upon return are enough to turn me into a hermit. I stuffed myself with my inlaw's amazing homemade pecan pie, biscuits and gravy, and TWO Thanksgiving dinners...I won't even admit how much weight I gained in one week. My sales were a success while I was gone, and I returned to ship packages to Italy, Germany, and Greece, among other locations. This was quite exciting to me. I'm going global, baby!! And the winner of my give-away on Mrs. B's blog was announced...congrats to Hillary in Illinois.

I was suffering from withdrawl symptoms after not working with wire for a week. So as soon as I got home I ran to my studio and twirled around in circles. The whole thing was reminiscent of the scene on the mountain top in the Sound of Music, until I saw my kids eyeing me, mouths agape. I dove into a project (in between loads of vacation laundry) and created a few lovely goodies. I still have a few more, in various stages of completion, laying amongst the piles of clutter on my work table. But I am home now, so they must wait no more! It is good to be home!


Friday, November 20, 2009

Happy Thanksgiving

OK, so it is a week away. But I must take my leave, lovely blog companions (a big hello and thanks to all my new followers!), for tonight, my husband and I will load our two sleeping children into our vehicle and venture on a cross country road trip to spend the holiday with family. My internet presence will be scarce for the next week as I stuff myself to the max with southern cuisine and turkey dinners...did I pack my elastic waist pants?

My Etsy shop will remain open, and I will be checking emails and convos, shipping will resume on Nov 30. I wish everyone a warm, happy, and safe holiday with your loved ones. May your days be filled with naps, lunch-time cocktails, and pecan pie.

On a parting note~ be sure to check out my Celtic Triskele pendant being given away by the lovely Mrs. B on her blog Confessions of a Pagan Soccer Mom.

Thursday, November 19, 2009

The Hunt

The noble stag was pausing now
Upon the mountain's southern brow,
Where broad extended, far beneath,
The varied realms of fair Menteith,
With anxious eye he wandered o'er,
Mountain and meadow, moss and moor,
And pondered refuge from his toil,
By far Lochard and Aberfoyle,
But nearer was the copsewood grey,
That waved and wept on Loch Achray,
And mingled with the pine-trees blue,
On the bold cliffs of Benvenue.
Fresh vigor with the hope returned,
With flying foot the heath he spurned,
Held westward with unwearied race,
And left behind the panting chase.

~The Hunt; an excerpt from the Lady of the Lake
~Sir Walter Scott
~artwork: The Monarch of the Glen
~Edwin Henry Landseer

Saturday, November 14, 2009


I have a spot in the men's gift showcase today!

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Tipping My Hat...

Being from a military family, I simply cannot let Veteran's Day pass by without discussing it. My family has many members who have served this country, including my father and my husband who were both in the Army, and my brother is an active duty Marine Corp officer. I was born on an Army base in Stuttgart, Germany where my father was stationed, and we moved quite a bit when I was very young until my father joined the civilian life once again. My dad is now the Head of Veteran Affairs in the county where he and mom live. He is very good at what he does, and he loves his job. My family is very patriotic and I was raised with a large sense of respect for members of the military.

Now, here is the conundrum. I don't believe in war. Well, I guess I have mixed feelings about the whole thing. Being a Medieval History major in college, I know alot about medieval warfare, and I love it. I love reading about ancient armies, and military strategies. I love reading about early cavalry and ancient weapons (my husband and I have actually discussed building a trebuchet, but that is a story for another time). I mean, what would the Legend of King Arthur be without a war with the Saxons? I realize that war and dispute has gone on as long as humans have been on this planet. It is part of our nature. This point is proven to me everyday as I watch my children fight over space and possessions.

So why do I have such a hard time with this subject when I know and understand it? Because it has hit home with me. It has affected my direct family. My grandfather and my uncle both fought in WWII. I have heard amazing and aweful stories about what they endured and know the effect the war had on them when they came home (my uncle came home with only one arm). More recently, my family has sent my little brother off to war. Twice he has gone to Iraq (or the "sandbox" as he calls it) to fly his huge helicopter in this seemingly neverending occupation we have gotten ourselves into. We don't always know exactly where he is, so everytime a helicopter crash is reported on the news we sit on the edge of our seats...waiting. My mom and I message back and forth "Have you heard from him?" It is a roller coaster ride of emotions when he is gone. He is most likely going to Afghanistan next spring.

So regardless of my feelings toward our government and the agendas and conspiracies that shape this nation's history, I highly respect the men and women who put their entire life on hold while they put themselves in harm's way, and their families who ride that roller coaster of emotion whenever they watch their son or daughter leave. It takes a special type of person to make the sacrifices that our military members make. My hat is off to you. Thank you for your service.

Pictured from top to bottom:

*My dad- David Welihan (Army)

*My husband- Jason "Pudge" Lovorn (Army)

*My brother- Jayson Welihan (Marines)

*My grandpa- William Welihan (Marines)

Sunday, November 8, 2009

The Many Faces of Merlin

Michael Byrne as Merlin in The Mists of Avalon

I have recently been inspired by several events (one of them being a blog post by Athena's Armoury) that have brought up one of my very favorite books, "The Mists of Avalon" by Marion Zimmer Bradley. If you have not read this book, I HIGHLY recommend it! I have been a collector of Arthurian items since I was a teenager. I have paintings, statues, shirts, jewelry boxes, and yes- books. I have read about 15 different versions of the Legend of King Arthur. Some of them I have loved, some of them I haven't.

But through all of my reading and exploring, the one character that I have always loved is Merlin. He and Morgaine le Faye are the two that I find myself dreaming about. In every version of the Legend Merlin is always a Druid. He is always wise. He is always surrounded by mystery. In "The Mists of Avalon", Merlin is not a man's name, but his title... The Merlin of Britain. He is the Druid High Priest. In other books I have read Merlin is his first name, or in Welsh "Myrddin". Sometimes he is portrayed as having mystical powers, sometimes he is portrayed as being misunderstood. One version of the Legend that I read had Merlin as an alchemist with knowledge of chemical compositions. In that story, he was experienced with the use of gun powder (among other things), and others believed he was a magical wizard because of this.

I love reading and learning new versions of my favorite story. My eyes glaze over and I stare dreamily at any art that I find on the subject. And always, at the center of the tale, is this amazingly mysterious and wise man they call Merlin.

"Merlin's Mistress" ring by Gypsy Moon Art Studio

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Wordless Wednesday...The Eyes Have It.

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Of Art and Squirrels

I love fall. I love the colors, the smell of burning leaves, I love Halloween, and I love the cooler weather. My collections of boots and hats emerge from my closet, with much excitement, for the next 7 months or so (usually until I begin to get strange looks for wearing boots in 70 degree weather, then sadly, I lovingly pack them away for the summer).

I find myself "nesting", like a squirrel, at this time of year. Most people do spring cleaning each year when the weather turns nice, I do a bit of that, too. But in the fall, I find myself doing a major overhaul of my family's belongings. Like a furry critter I declutter, clean, and organize- all in preperation of hibernating for the long winter ahead. Living in beautiful Michigan, our winters are hard. Really. We have had snow so deep, you can go sledding off of your roof, and that is just the lower peninsula. In the upper peninsula, they have doors on the second story of their homes, so they can get out in the winter. My point is- we spend alot of time indoors during long, cold, snowstormy days.

The same goes for my business, too. My website is getting a major makeover right now and my Etsy shop is getting a facelift. I am retaking photos that I am unhappy with, checking my links (and adding new ones), listing new items, and marketing. I am expanding my online presence and meeting some great new people! My studio has recently been reorganized and cleaned, as well. It is amazing what treasures you rediscover when you organize your bead and wire stash! Now is also the time to look ahead to next year's art shows and decide which ones to participate in (will it truly be worth the while to drive all the way to Chicago for a show?)

Don't get me wrong...I am the Queen of Procrastination. But during the fall my "organization instinct" overrides my deeply ingrained sense of dalliance. And I am thankful for this. Some of my favorite days are in the middle of winter, snowbound, with nothing more to do than be with my family and create jewelry.

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Put a lid on it

Ok, so I am obsessed with hats...and shoes...and handbags...

Friday, October 23, 2009

Balancing Act

Family VS. Work

I was graced with having almost no will power when it comes to certain things. Chocolate, for instance, or good beer (especially a really hoppy one with a nice bitter kick to it). I also have a keen sense of procrastination. I am a master at putting things off until the last possible minute. The combination of these two traits can be lethal when running your own small business. Add into the mix two wild little ones who need my attention, and it is a wonder anything gets accomplished!

I have been forced to devise a way to keep myself on task. It has been a daunting task for me- I am not a Type A personality. I am the true definition of Aquarius...free thinking, rebellious, I do things my own way , always need to have the last word, never do things by the book.

I have started writing everything down. My wonderful husband bought me an organizer in which I keep track of all of my important dates and events. On this I keep track of my daughter's kindergarten events, classes that I teach, upcoming art shows and deadlines, etc. I usually carry this with me and it has come in very handy on several occasions. I also have a notebook that I leave on my jewelry work table. I use this to keep track of incoming orders, making sure to record the order date and date needed. I try to jot down one or two goals to finish that day. I also use this notebook to sketch any ideas, and write notes to myself. Each day I check my notebook to see what I need to work on first. I don't give myself a strict time schedule during the day that way I can do a jewelry project, then play with the munchkins for a while, then do another project. I can adjust my day and spend a little more time on one thing and a little less time on others. Since I run a busy household, I also keep track of things that need to be done around the house. I write down things that need to be done on a daily basis, such as appoinments. I also write down a few weekly projects. These I work on over the course of the week as I have time, like cleaning out a closet, or organizing my kids' winter clothes.

My system is not fool proof, by any means. But it works for me. Most of the time...unless I settle in with some chocolate and a good beer next to my husband. Then it will have to wait until tomorrow.

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

My inspiration

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

When in Rome...

It has become clear to me, in the midst of an internet world of artists selling their ware, that blogging is the thing to do. I have had a website for many years, but every time I want to post something new, I have to rearrange the whole thing. It does not allow me to have control while excercising my aristic freedom. So, the Gypsy Moon Art Studio blog is born.
I do not promise to post everyday, I do promise, however, to be creative, sarcastic (is there any other way to be?), and honest. Over the next few days I will be figuring this out, adding things, letting you know more about myself and my art.
This is just the beginning...
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