"Almost everything will work again if you unplug it for a few minutes,
including you." Anne LaMotte
I love that quote by Anne Lamotte and I think it's true. Do you have times were you just feel too tired to keep going and yet you do? Yeah, me, too. Why we do that? Why not take a break now & then? We are no good to ourselves or anyone else when we are exhausted.
As you know, I am working my way up my New Year's Hopes/Wishes. I am now at number 3, which is 'it's ok to rest". If you want to read the whole post, you can go here to read it now. That post was about what we choose to focus on.
I am going to start scheduling free time in my day; otherwise, I will fill every waking moment with work. The thing is, I love my work - I love making jewelry and I love connecting with people about the jewelry. That makes it a little harder to take breaks but I am determined to find some balance in my life.
Now that the Better Tomorrow Collection is complete, it's easier to schedule a little down time. For awhile there, I was designing, making, marketing, etc. and it seemed to just go on & on.
I am taking Friday afternoons off and I will be a better person for it! How about you? How can you find time to slow down a little bit? I could love to hear your thoughts!
JDRF funds research that changes the lives of people with type 1 diabetes (T1D). Research is working toward a cure for T1D and drives scientific progress that delivers treatments making daily life easier, safer and healthier for people living with T1D. A portion of profits from sales from the Better Tomorrow Collection will be donated to JDRF.
Previously, I told you how I went about beginning to design these pieces so you remember that I chose the color blue and lapis lazuli for their "symbolic" associations.
Click here to see the complete collection: Better Tomorrow Collection
JDRF works to support research toward finding a cure for type 1 diabetes, also called T1D. Their goal is to make daily life better and healthier for those people who have this disease.
When I started researching the design of a new collection to support this organization, I went first to their website to have a look at their logo and the colors they used - general information that could help me find a vision to work from for this collection. What I found was wonderful information to use as I starting planning the collection.
That lead me to question how to incorporate blue in the designs. Although most of my jewelry is sterling silver, I do love gemstones and have used them from time to time in my designs. The stone that came to mind was lapis lazuli, a beautiful rich blue stone with gold or sometimes tiny white flecks of quartz.
On to the next question - does the gemstone lapis lazuli have an association with something? Back to the internet to research this beautiful stone and it's symbolism across time and cultures. I didn't have to look far to find what I wanted - lapis is associated with inner power and courage, two traits that are undeniably associated with people diagnosed with T1D.
So, I had the color and the gemstone I would use for the collection. I knew that I couldn't make an endless number of pieces for the collection so I had to narrow it down in some reasonable way. I will tell you about that process next time!
Til then, click here to see the entire collection: Better Tomorrow Complete Collection for T1D
As I was considering which of so many wonderful charities to support with my jewelry business, several came to mind right away: finding homes for the abandoned animals in our community, cancer research, and Type 1 Diabetes research. Each possibility was so worthy and does such excellent work. How to decide?
My decision ultimately came down to a very personal experience. Several years ago, a beloved family member was diagnosed with Type 1 Diabetes at Christmas time at a very young age. To say the hospital stay was an unhappy time is understating the obvious. The family member, by the time she was released from the hospital, had learned to inject herself with the insulin which was now necessary. Over the intervening years, many finger sticks and injections later, there is still no cure for this disease. Those who are diagnosed with T1D battle the disease every single day of their lives. In the end, for me, I simply felt that I had to support, with my handmade jewelry, the wonderful organization that provides funds for research for Type 1 Diabetes. Go here if you would like more information about this disease.
On Tuesday, June 13th the collection was launched and the jewelry is now on my website. Click here to see the complete collection: http://www.laurateague.com/store/c39/Type-1-diabetes-better-tomorrow
I began slowly to narrow down my focus - I did like the idea to help the abandoned animals in our city and the need is so great; I admire those who give so selflessly of their time and resources to help find these animals a home. A little closer to home, cancer research was a huge interest, primarily because I watched both my mother and two cousins succumb to cancer not too many years ago (all within one year but that is another story). Finally, diabetes research was on my radar because of another family member's struggle with that disease. In the next post, I will let you know how I finally decided where to focus and how I decided how to accomplish the next step.
Something important was forgotten - something so important that I could not do the show without this. I forgot the table covers. Big problem. Major problem.
Fortunately, the next small town we came to had a Walmart. I went in, found drapes in a nice cream color and they were on sale for 4.50 each! I picked up seven for my 3 tables and then went back at the last minute & picked up another one. You can see a photo above of what my "make do" table covers looked like. Not perfect but I thing/hope that I was the only one who noticed!
Laugh? Yes, I did. What else could I do?
Til next time!
You might recognize the title of this blog from my New Year's Day post. It was all about what I (and maybe you, too) hope for in the new year. If you want to read that post, you can go here to read it.
What is it they say? Laughter is the best medicine? (On a side note, who is "they"? I always wondered that....)
There is nothing like a good laugh to lighten your mood and move you from "oh, not yet" to "here I come, world!" We feel that we have to be so serious about our work, our relationships and our lives. Consider taking a break from that seriousness for a little while - treat it like a mini vacation!
You may ask, "how does this relate to handmade jewelry?" That is a good question. While my jewelry is generally not "laugh out loud" funny, I do have some pieces that might make you smile - and that is sometimes enough.
Mother's Day is coming and in honor of mom's everywhere (including "moms" of pets), I am offering a gift of these handmade freshwater pearl and Swarovski crystal earrings.
For the first 20 people who spend at least $50 on my website, from now through May 14th, I will include these earrings as a special gift and a way of saying thank you for buying local and buying small. National Small Business day was this month, so that is appropriate!
Take a look around, pick out something for yourself or a mom you know and I will also send you these pearl and crystal earrings - keep them for yourself or share with someone you love.
When Mother's Day rolls around every year, I think about my mom and feel gratitude for the mom figures I still have in my life. If your mom is gone, I'll bet you do the same.
I always send a little something to the moms in my life: maybe just a card, maybe a piece of my own handmade silver jewelry, maybe a phone call where I can relax and enjoy sharing remembrances with someone who has some of the same memories I do.
If you are among the many people who send gifts to a mom in your life, I have put together a fun Mother's Day offer for you - a gift for her & a gift for you! Here are the details: for the first 20 people who order $50.00 or more of my jewelry between May 1st and May 14th, I will include a pair of FREE handmade pearl earrings. That's a win-win! (In south Louisiana, this little something extra is called "lagniappe"!)
Another favorite piece are these earrings that I wear all the time! I call them earrings for the "Yoga Mom" because they are simple enough not to get in the way of anything life throws at her but also unusual enough to be fun to wear. To see all the gemstone possibilities available with these earrings, go here.
Go here to shop the complete collection of jewelry!
Go here if you want to see the complete Gift Guide for Mother's Day
As always, thanks for stopping by! I hope to see you in person at one of my shows soon! Oh, and, Happy Mother's Day!
Made by Hand
Laura lives in Baton Rouge, Louisiana and creates jewelry inspired by ancient patterns.