Monday, December 21, 2009

Bad Blogger with Good Intentions

That's me.  Here's wishing my readers, their readers and all the people of the universe a happy, healthy Holiday season and a New Year filed with JOY.  I will be back soon with new posts and a new focus.  Cheers!!!

Friday, November 13, 2009

Free Image Friday the 13th

Friday the 13th.

Some fear this day unlucky.  For me personally, I look forward to Fridays that fall on the 13th of the Month.  They've always been lucky for me!

For those of you who need some luck to come your way today, here are some beautiful butterflies -- said to bring luck then they land upon you.

Have a lucky day and may that luck spread throughout your entire life!


Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Finally New Work ...

Now if I only had a new camera, I would be able to post really nice pictures.  This is a scan.  The aqua color beads in this piece are my own design.  Polymer clay with gold leaf.  The scan just doesn't do them justice.  The stones are died agate, I'm pretty sure from Rings & Things, but might be from Michael's, JoAnn's or my LBS.  The clasp I found at JoAnn's.

I really think that I have grown as a designer, comparing this piece with some of my earlier designs.  I get compliments every time I wear this.  I made earrings to match -- too bad I lost one at work the other day or I'd post a picture of those too.

Note to Santa (you never know who's reading):  the best possible gift for me this year would be an IPod Touch.  I've been a really good girl all year long!!!

Monday, November 9, 2009

Monday Movie Madness -- "Love in the Time of Cholera"

Based on the wildly popular novel by Nobel Prize winning Columbia author Gabriel Garcia Marquez this film is set in the magical and sensual city of Cartagena, Columbia at the turn of the century, a man waits over 50 years for his one true love.  Florentino Ariza (Javier Bardem), a poet and clerk for his uncle (Hector Elizondo), falls helplessly in love when he spies Fermina Daza (Italian actress Giovanna Mezzogiorno) through the window of her father's villa.  Through a series of passionate letters, Florentino gradually awakens the young beauty's heart.  When her father (John Leguizamo) discovers the budding affair, he is furious and vows to keep them apart forever.  He takes the screaming Fermina into the night and moves her to her family's farm in the countryside.  Years go by and the family returns to Cartagena and Fermina meets the young Dr. Juvenal Urbino (Benjamin Bratt) -- who has brought order and medicine to the city, stemming the waves of cholera that mysteriously besiege the area -- when she becomes ill and is treated by him.  Dr. Urbino asks Senior Daza for Fermina's hand and they are married.  Florentino is crushed.  The newlyweds go off to Paris for an extended period and when they returned to Cartagena to start their lives, Fermina has all but forgotten her first love; however, Florentino has not forgotten her.  He vows to someday have a life with her.  The years go by and Florentino discovers that sex with myriad women is the only thing that can help to ease his heartache.  His uncle leaves him the shipping company that he was clerk for and he becomes a very wealthy man.  His heart (and only his heart) is patient and he will wait a lifetime to be with his love.

I've always wanted to read this book, but somehow never have.  This film is beautiful, and the romantic in me was very moved by Florentino's character.  That being said, the rest of the characters in this story (perhaps it was just the acting) are very hard to like.  There is plenty of eye candy in the cast, sets and cinematography however, and on that basis, I recommend this film.  On a scale from 1 to 5, I give it a 3.

Friday, November 6, 2009

Free Image Friday

Paper dolls, I don't know about you, but I just can't resist paper dolls.  I loved them as a child and I love them still.

Have a blessed weekend!


Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Just Peachy, Thank You

I designed this pendant a little while back, using polymer, embossing and mica powders.  I just love it's organic shape and the peach and rust colors.  I'm not sure how to finish it, however.  I really wish that I would have made some beads to go with it, and because I'm the type of color-mixer that doesn't write down what she mixed with what, there is no way that I could replicate the colors.  Any suggestions?

Monday, November 2, 2009

Monday Movie Madness -- "Atonement"

Based on Ian McEwan’s novel of the same name, Atonement is set in England in 1935, precocious 13-year-old Briony Tallis (Saoirse Ronan) lives on her family's country estate with her mother, brother and sister, Leon (Patrick Kennedy) and Cecilia (Keira Knightley). Cecilia is home for the summer from Cambridge where she had been studying with the housekeeper's son, Robbie (James McAvoy).  The Tallises are being visited by young relatives (young twin boys and the lovely redhead, Lola (Juno Temple) from the north, whose parents are in the process of divorcing and Leon’s chocolatier friend Paul (Benedict Cumberbatch).  Paul keenly follows Hitler's political advance and predicts war.  He plans to sell chocolate bars to the British military to give to their soldiers.  While he tries to amuse Pierrot and Jackson, Paul and Lola flirt. Cecilia and Robbie have an uncertain relationship, but a certain romantic chemistry exists between them.  It can also be said that Briony has a crush on the handsome Robbie.  One day, Briony witnesses from her bedroom window an exchange between Cecilia and Robbie at the fountain in the garden, when Robbie accidently breaks a vase and sends a piece of broken pottery into the water and Cecilia strips down to her slip and dives in after it.  Because she does not understand the dynamics of what she sees, she misunderstands the exchange she feels betrayed and the seeds of mistrust of Robbie are planted.

Embarrassed by his behavior earlier in the day, Robbie tries to write an apology note to Cecilia. One of the drafts includes a sexually charged declaration of his love for her. He then writes a more formal apology he intends to deliver to her.  However, he accidentally slips the sexually charged note to Briony to deliver (because he believes it will be less embarrassing if delivered by way of Briony) when they meet in the drive on their way to the house. When he realizes what he has done, he calls out to Briony but she does not hear him.  Back in the house, Briony reads the note and is scandalized. She gives the note to Cecilia but later confides to Lola that she believes Robbie is a dangerous sex maniac.  When Robbie arrives at the house, he discusses the note with Cecilia and they admit their love for one another.  They make passionate love in the library, but are interrupted when Briony walks in on them.  At dinner, it is discovered that Pierrot and Jackson have run away. Everyone goes off to search for the boys. While hunting through the dark, Briony stumbles upon Lola being raped.  Once seen by Briony, the man escapes into the night.  Briony insists to first Lola and then the police that Robbie was the culprit and brandishes the sexual letter to Cecilia as evidence.  Only Cecilia protests his innocence.  When Robbie returns (with the twins), he is arrested for rape.  Tried and convicted, he is sent to prison.  Four years later he is released into the British army and makes up part of the British Expeditionary Force that is sent to northern France in an attempt to halt the Nazi advance.

In northern France, a wounded Robbie and two fellow soldiers attempt to make their way to Dunkirk, where the remnants of the BEF are to be evacuated after the Nazis rout their forces and the French.  Several weeks earlier, before he left London, he saw Cecilia (who is now a nurse in London) again.  She remained true to him for four years and begs him to “come back to me.” She reveals is estranged from family over her love for Robbie and belief in his innocence. She gives him a photograph of a seaside cottage near Dover that they can retire to. It will give him strength as he struggles towards Dunkirk.

Briony, now 18 (and played by Romola Garai) has decided not to study at Cambridge and is herself training to be a nurse.  When Briony sees a newsreel announcing Lola’s engagement to Paul, she is wracked with guilt over falsely accusing Robbie of the rape.  Briony goes to see Cecilia to admit her guilt and state her willingness to do whatever it takes to atone for her sins and clear Robbie's name.  Robbie is in Cecilia's apartment when she gets there.  Although they are angry with her, they tell her what she needs to do to make things right. She agrees, then leaves as Cecilia and Robbie are intimate for one last time before he is shipped to France.

The move then flashes forward to 1999 and Briony (now Vanessa Redgrave), in her late seventies and dying of vascular dementia, is a famous novelist and being interviewed for her new book, Atonement.  What that interview reveals would spoil the movie for anyone who hasn’t seen it, so I’ll stop here.

Atonement was nominated for six Academy Awards and took the statuette for best score.  Although the acting, cinematography and production were lovely, this is definitely not a feel good film and left me feeling a bit empty.  As I haven’t read the book, I can’t say for certain, but think that it may have been best left a novel.  On a scale from 1 to 5, I give this film a 3.5 and do recommend it just because of the beautiful pre-war English countryside and the acting talents of the entire cast.

Friday, October 30, 2009

Have a Barking Mad Halloween

Free Image Friday

Vintage Postcards!
(click to biggify)

Enjoy and have a wonderful weekend.

Thursday, October 29, 2009

"Sometimes new love comes between old friends. Sometimes the best love was the one that was always there."

Facebook is a wonderful thing.  Back at the start of the year, my 50th by the way, I received an email (or was it a myspace message?) from my good friend since grade school, Susan Rothenberg Carey, that there was this cool website where a bunch of our old friends from Betsey Ross Elementary and Culver City Jr. and Sr. High Schools were members and that I should join in.  Join I did and it was been quite a ride.  Not only have I reconnected with friends from as far back as kindergarten (Melanie, Dana and Glenda), Jr. High and High School (too many to list) but over 100 members of the beloved youth group that I was a member of in my high school years, B'nai Brith Youth Org.  Those reunions on their own are remarkable but wait -- there's more.  In March, I stumbled upon the profile of my 78 year old biological mother, Anne.  I had been searching for her for 30 years.  Through that connection, I discovered that I have 2 half-sisters and a plethora of nieces and nephews.  Amazing.  The reunion with Anne has changed me in such a profound way, it's if my heart has wings and I've been set free.  The relationship itself has been difficult for me, but it's finding its way.  However, just knowing where I've been has made it possible for me to move ahead and see my past clearly for the first time all at once.  I feel reborn and am so thankful.  Now, just when I thought Facebook had done everything for me that it possibly could, low and behold, I am reunited with a dear friend from my teens that has held a special place in my heart for all these years.  Am I blessed or what?

The picture is of me, this very morning, taken by my son Jonathan, simply to record this day and my smile.  I have always had every reason to be happy.  It has not always been so.  Lately, I am happy.  Happy, joyful, bemused and blessed.  Susan, I will always be grateful for that initial invite to join Facebook and for everything that your friendship has meant throughout the years.  Whether you realize it or not, my dear, you have helped me to find this happiness.  I don't know what the female version of a mensch is, but that is you. 

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Woot Woot!

Thanks to Heather Powers and the other wonderfully talented ladies at the Art Bead Scene blog, my name was drawn from the hat to win the wonderful book at left Beading with World Beads.  

Hop on over to Heather's site for some wonderful polymer clay beads that are truly one of kind and visit Art Bead Scene for fun monthly challenges, gorgeous art bead eye candy and terrific tutorials.

Thanks again, Heather and ABS.

Monday, October 26, 2009

Monday Movie Madness (or lack thereof)

Fall Swirl Focal
Originally uploaded by SandiLeeDesigns

One of my weekend mainstays for years has been watching a video or two. With the advent of "on demand" viewing, I have been depending upon HBO and Cinemax for my weekend movie fix. Lately I have been disappointed. This weekend I could find nothing that I was interested in watching. Last weekend I watched the HBO mini-series "Angels in America" and I more than highly recommend this beautifully moving series to anybody who has ever loved anybody. In otherwords, devote the 6 plus hours and watch it. Beautiful.

The beads I've posted here as an example of my early work in polymer clay. The three larger beads are hand-formed (the green beads, glass). The colors hand-blended.  I had just started making beads when I made these fall inspired beads. The shaping has a lot to be desired. However, when I look at these beads, I feel proud and happy. My first beads ... sigh ... I believe I've really grown.

Have a wonderous Monday.

Friday, October 23, 2009

Free Image Friday

This is a fun one!

Have a wonderful weekend and see you all again on Monday.

Hugs and Kisses,

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Two for Tuesday?

I was going to post a two for Tuesday post, but unfortunately I've been sick with some sort of un-named plague (which is better than a named plague as far as I'm concerned -- read: a cold) and haven't felt like posting at all.  Instead, I'm going to break my twofer post into two and post this bracelet that I made as part one.  It is crocheted silver wire with gemstone and pearl bead soup, an antique silver and shell button closure.  My first bead crochet project.  I think it came it rather nicely. 

Stay tuned for the necklace that made way for the bead soup.

Stay well, my friends.

Friday, October 16, 2009

Free Image Friday

Enjoy and have a wonderful weekend!
(click on image to biggify and save)

Thursday, October 15, 2009

In My Dreams

This morning during those minutes right before the alarm went off, I dreamt that I had made these earrings to go with the outfit that I had planned on wearing this morning.

So, instead of hitting the snooze button, I got up, got ready for work in record time (who needs mascara anyway...) and put these earrings together.

The donuts are Carnelian and I believe from Rings & Things the findings and seeds are brass from my LBS.  Picture from Alyss and her trusty iphone.

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

The Kindness of Strangers


I left a comment on one of my favorite blogs:  Artsy-Fartsy and was very surprised to receive an email from it's owner, Cheryl.  What a sweetie.  You may have noticed the change in appearance of my blog, I couldn't have done any of this without the direction of Cheryl.  Go visit her blog, it's very "caute" and she's a doll.

Thank you, Cher!

Tuesday, October 13, 2009


Aztec Tiger Pendant
Originally uploaded by SandiLeeDesigns
And the day came
when the risk
it took to remain
tight inside the bud
was more painful
than the risk it took
to blossom.
... Anais Nin

I made this pendant about 2 years ago and turned it into a necklace abundant with beautiful tiger's eye. I gave it to Anne, my biological mother at our first meeting.

Monday, October 12, 2009

Monday Movie Madness

With financial times being what they are, I find that I am spending a lot less money on tickets to the local Krikorian and more time with my remote and cable t.v. I watch a lot of movies over the weekend. Welcome to what will likely become a weekly feature of my blog, Monday Movie Madness, where I will review a movie that I've seen over the weekend. This week I will be reviewing December Boys.

December Boys is a coming of age picture set in 1960s Australia based on the novel of the same name by Michael Noonan. The film revolves around four orphan boys from a Roman Catholic orphanage located in the Australian outback who were all born in the month of December.

The boys (played by Daniel Radcliffe (Maps) of Harry Potter fame, and three unknowns (at least to me), Lee Cormie (Misty), Christian Byers (Sparks) and James Fraser (Spit)) are sent on holiday by the sea to stay with a middle-aged couple. While there, they meet Fearless, a man who claims that he is the risk motorbike rider in the nearby carnival, and his wife, Teresa. Having all but given up hope of ever being adopted, the friends are on a seaside holiday one winter when they hear a rumor that a seaside couple are looking to adopt one of the orphans, friendships are tested and new alliances made as the four boys compete for the chance to gain a real family.

I enjoyed this film, but I’m not sure why -- it could have been a number of reasons. The scenery of the Southern Australian coastline was breathtaking. The ensemble acting was good enough, and Daniel Radcliffe is well-practiced at playing an orphan. I think for me, it was that I could relate of all of the characters. There was just something in each of them that touched my heart.

December Boys is a feel good movie, with a melancholy twist. On the Movie Monday scale from 1 to 5, I give it a 3.5 and recommend you all add it to your Net-Flix list.

Friday, October 9, 2009

Free Image Friday

As a mixed-media artist, I just love free images that can be printed out and used in my art. This will be the first of many "Free Image Fridays" on Do Be Do Bead Do. These images can be used as transfers onto polymer clay, as collage elements, for scrapbooking or where ever your creativity takes you. Enjoy and have a happy weekend!

Thursday, October 8, 2009

Cupid's Arrow

Cupid's Arrow
Originally uploaded by SandiLeeDesigns
This is one of my favorites, which landed with one of my good friends, Amy. An earlier creation from about 3 years ago, I wanted to post it first, so that I can show the progress I've made in my polymer work. The piece got it's name because this was the bead that shot it's arrow into my heart and made me fall in love with polymer clay.


This is a test post from flickr, a fancy photo sharing thing.

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Why "Do Be Do Bead Do"?

Easy: Think "Strangers in the Night" and Frank Sinatra.

Welcome to My Blog

I have been pondering over where to start with my blog. I know that I need some pictures of my work and those are coming shortly, but I wanted to start before that. I wanted this blog partially to document my progress with the Bead Journal Project, as well as my feelings about reconnecting with my biological family, a place to show my work, -- there's my desire to share my bead addiction with others and then there's the polymer part and, probably most importantly, my quest to just share myself. What am I getting to, you may ask? (Look, I tend to ramble in my thoughts, my speech, my art. It's no surprise that I will have a ramble of a blog.) Anywhoodle, my idea for my BJP is to do 12 pieces the size of ATCs (artist's trading cards) which are 2.5 x 3.5". My plan is for each card to describe a different aspect of myself that I like. In making my list, I have come up with 24 words to describe things that I like about me. Since I am working on loving myself and getting to know myself, I found this to be amazing. I also thought, what a great start to my blog!

Here goes. I am (in no particular order): sweet, lovely, tall, smart, sassy, strong, brave, silly, warm, adventurous, loyal, kind, honest, handy, pretty, loving, tender, comforting, caring, artistic, and I am a helper, dreamer, idealist and a believer.

So, welcome again and stick around. I'm pretty cool!