Thanksgiving is a time to reflect and be thankful.  Today’s photo prompt is glass.  I took this shot at the row of cafes near my house.  I’m thankful to live near cafes, be able to walk to town.  I was amazed by how full the shot is, with trees and cars and lights and doors and windows, and people, and shapes, and glows and reflections. This photo is kind of like thinking about life.  So much there, hard to find a pattern, hard to interpret, but still somehow it works.

For me, I am so thankful to be (basically) free. To know that I’m (basically) safe and cared for. That I am recovering from my illness. That  my extended family, disjointed as it may be, loves me and hopes for the best for me. I’m thankful for my fabulous husband and my crazy pupper. My home and my friends. I’m thankful that self-created drama is not part of my life. I’m thankful to you for reading my blog.

There is really so much going on in the world, in each of our lives.  In the life of our crazy democratic yet still not very democratic society. I don’t write or want to write a political blog, but recent events sure have me thinking–thinking about justice and privilege.  I am not thankful for the troubles of our nation, our world.  I wish I knew how to not feel them so deeply, but then I wouldn’t be me. I want to write a positive blog, to share gratitude and joy.  And I am thankful.  And I am joyful–but part of me is just aching today for the lack of justice in our world, and I can’t not say that.

Handmade Christmas Gifts: Hemp and Aventurine Wrap Bracelet or Necklace

Hemp Aventurine Wrap Bracelet or Necklace

Hemp Aventurine Wrap Bracelet or Necklace

I always try to make some of my Christmas or holiday presents. I myself really love getting handmade gifts and I know that some of my friends and relatives appreciate it too. As our world gets more and more commercialized, a handmade gift given to the right person can mean so much  more than a purchased one.

I’ve had these small, faceted, aventurine beads for a long time. I love semi precious stones–jewelry, beads, and the stones themselves.

Aventurine is known to be a healing stone which brings energy and opportunity.

Thanks to Jewelry Making Journal, I followed this tutorial, with several changes. I only had 42 beads and I put 5 chain stitches between beads. I used 10lb hemp which I got at my local craftstore, Beverly’s. I used a 2.75 mm hook, because that’s what I had. After the piece was finished, I blocked it by wetting in warm water, and stretching it with pins across my ironing board. This made the bracelet longer and less bumpy–more “finished” looking.

I like the natural, low-bling, boho style of this piece! Next time I think I will vary the number of stitches between beads to make the beads fall less uniformly.  I’m not crazy about the way the beads fall in a crooked line on my wrist. It may fall differently on another size wrist.  Not sure about that.

The bracelet wraps around my wrist 9 times and can be worn as a long or short necklace. It was pretty easy and fun to make and I think I’ll make some more today.  Want to join me?

Ooh, it’s Microblog Monday!  Check out Stirrup Queen’s great blog and list of microblog monday peeps!