Holiday Open House on Sunday!

The stockings were hung by the chimney with care…and they really are!

We’ve decorated. And we’ve cleaned. And we’ve baked. (Yes, I mean Mom’s baked.) And we’ve organized. And we’re near collapse. But we’re finally ready for tomorrow’s Open House. Wheee!

A few early starters showed up this afternoon, getting the date wrong, but given the fact that I was covered in grime and stinky, they only stayed a few moments and I wisked them out the door again, hoping they can come Sunday. Kathryn’s mad because she had planned on being the first one to arrive for the Open House and here she got beat by a whole 25 hours! Next year I’ll expect that she sets up a tent in the front yard to hold her spot in line.

A few more tasks before bed tonight – figuring out what the rest of the door prizes are, and straightening the office. Then a little last minute cleaning and vacuuming in the morning, some sandwich making, and we’re set!

Oh! And if any of you haven’t taken the Russian Splendor class at Nomadic Notions or the national shows and still wish you could – you have another chance. Two of my early birdies talked me into a private class on Friday, Dec. 19 here at the Tapestry Beads Studio, from noon to 3pm. Class tuition is $25. If you’re interested, drop me an email so I can put you on the list.

Beads, beads, and more beads!

Ah, I do love my UPS man. Today I came home from a hair appt to find 20 pounds of beads on my doorstep. And 40 pounds of bags. Yup. Plain ol’ bags. 2×2 baggies, 2×3 baggies, 6×9 baggies, and on and on. It’s amazing how many I use in a year.

Mom and I managed to get half our new artwork up on the studio wall, but pooped out before we could finish the last quarter of the job. It’s nerve-wracking to install. You’ll understand this weekend when I’m able to unveil it to the world. I was a little worried I wouldn’t like it, but fears have been put to rest. It totally rocks!

So I’m sitting in the living room tonight, watching random tv and tubing up beads. You get a lot of tubes out of 20 pounds worth.

I’m informed that Rich, Becky, and Alexis will be at the Open House for the first 45 min. to an hour on Sunday – after that we’re interfering with nap time, and one does NOT mess with a toddler’s nap!

I’m also informed that if you guys don’t come and see me and eat up while you’re here, I will be eating little sandwiches and chips and queso and veggies and dip and yada, yadda for the next month. Save me.

Sneak Peek

Here’s the sort of thing Mom & I have been up to for the past week.

Santa hanging out in the front hall

These are the new tables for the studio. I love them! And that blank wall on the left won’t be blank for much longer. I can’t wait to see how the new art works there!

The framed illuminated manuscript page is from 1460. How cool is that?

The pine cones are an homage to our former place in Bastrop – 2 acres of pine forest.

Holiday Open House Details

First Annual Holiday Open House
Sunday, December 7
Noon – 5pm
Tapestry Beads Studio
914 Wild Petunia Way
Pflugerville, TX 78660

We’ll have food, punch, soft drinks…
If you’ve got a fabulous dish that you want to bring and show off, feel free!

Hourly door prizes, with one grand prize at the end of the day.
Grand prize will be one free Tapestry Beads Studio class, including a free kit.

Come and spend five minutes, or all five hours!
Tables will be set up for beading, so bring a project to work on…
Or just a bunch of show and tell!

Special celebrity guest appearances by:
Alexis Wiseman
Winston Wiggles Wiseman
Maggie Wiseman

Show & Tell

It’s been been a long time since I shared any jewelry photos with you – mainly because I’ve got about eleventy million projects partially worked up, but nothing actually completed. I’m working away on rectifying that situation as I’ve got more beading time available to me this time of year. So more photos will be arriving throughout December.

For today, though, it’s Mom’s fabulous project I get to show off! She has loved the look of freeform beading since the very beginning of our beady journey, some 7 years ago. It’s the kind of thing you either love to do, or it really stresses you out. I’m sad to say, I’m the “stressed out while working on it” type. I wish I could be more loosey-goosey, but in this family, Mom’s the one with the freeform mojo.

She purchased the cabochon this past February at the Tucson jewelry shows, and then picked out most of the seed beads for it at the same time since we had access to the amazing choices at Beyond Beadery right there in front of us at our show. She set it aside for many months during the mid part of this year, but then pulled it out again last month and she was a woman on a mission! She almost finished it at the Houston Bead Society Show, but then we decided it needed a tiny bit more length, so the real finish happened Sunday night while watching The Amazing Race.

I’m so proud of her! It’s completely awesome and I can’t wait to wear it myself. I’m sure she’ll be wearing it this Sunday at the Holiday Open House – you’re coming, aren’t you? If you need the address and directions, email me at – and feel free to bring anyone you think would enjoy it!

We’re still working away on preparations. I got all the gifts ready today (yes, you get a gift just for showing up!) and made progress on the things like taking the wrappers off candles, hanging ornaments, etc. We picked up our new classroom tables on Sunday and I’m about to go attach the legs to them so we can set them up properly in the room.

Still on my to-do list: Decorating the trees outside, mowing the lawn (it is TEXAS), making door prize certificates, making door prize drawing sign ups, finishing decorations around the house, grocery shopping, and then taking photos of our festive home to share with you guys!

Mystery in Round Rock

We had a strange thing happen to the Wiseman Family this Thanksgiving.

While my brother & sister-in-law were visiting her family in Dallas over the holiday, someone took it upon themselves to add Holiday lawn decorations to their house. It’s a “complete mystery” who might have done such a thing. Personally, I think it was brilliant. Genius, even.

The Elves left a Santa doll that’s as big as Alexis, two lighted spiral Christmas trees, and a Snoopy holiday light. Rich sent some photos to us tonight showing how much Alexis loved the surprise. Is she not the most adorable munchkin ever??

Whoever the Elves might have been (giggle) have big plans for the future. Like maybe NEXT year when they go to Becky’s family for Thanksgiving, additional lawn ornaments will be “anonymously” added to the display. Wouldn’t that be awesome? Those Elves are the funniest people I know!


Woof! This is Winston, taking over the blog for the day because it’s MY DAY! (wag, wag, wiggle) Today is one hooman year since I came to live with Mama June and Mama Jill and my step-sisters, Maggie, Piper, and Josie. It’s great being the only man in the house – I show them all the time how manly I am and they kiss and cuddle and coo at me.

Okay, so maybe when they call me Winnie the Poo I’m not feeling so manly. Or worse, Winnie Poo Poo Head. I get Wookie, and Boo Boo Bear too. But eventually I’ll train them that when they call me that, things get eated. Socks, beads, glasses…you leave it, I’ll eated it. Now THAT’S manly!

Actually, Mama Jill was noticing that I’m having a maturity shift the last few weeks – whatever! I’ve got her snowed! But I realized that if I calm down more, then the destruction, when it comes, is much funner because it’s a surprise! Wheeee!

Anyway, Happy Adoptiversary to me! I sure luv my hoomans. And I think they finally luvs me too. I had to bat my long eyelashes at them. Works every time.

Lost a post?

I’m so confused – I just looked at the blog to remind myself of what I’d last told ya’ll about the doings around here, and the last post I made is missing!? I KNOW I wrote it – but it’s just gone. Well drat.

Okay, that means it’s catch-up time! Mom and I are planning on spending the holiday weekend eating (naturally,) napping (just as naturally,) finalizing the menu for the Holiday Open House, and doing our decorating. My brother’s family is with the in-laws over Thanksgiving, so that means it’s just Mom and me on this holiday. But then we get them, and the ever entertaining Munchkin!) on Christmas – and get to see her open her gifts. I think it’s a good trade off.

I got another round of good news today – unfortunately it’s too early to share with you guys. But I’m hopeful it won’t be too much longer before I can tell all! 2009 is shaping up to be quite the year and I’m really looking forward to it. Great classes coming…great new kits…fabulously fun travel…new opportunities…Wheee!!

A Thanksgiving quote:

“Gratitude makes sense of our past, brings peace for today, and creates a vision for tomorrow.”
—Melody Beattie

Stimulating the economy

Mom and I sure did our part today to help alleviate the economic crisis. Shoes were purchased (two pair for Mom! A record! And a pair for me as a “commission”) which was the critical component. We tried to clear out the holiday aisles of Hobby Lobby, but their reserves are more than we could handle. I think we made a tiny dent. You’ve got to love 50% off.

There were two things that really struck us both on our shopping excursion. First, the lack of bodies around us. The weekend before Black Friday and yet the stores were painfully empty. Which leads to the second thing – aggressive sales people. I’ve never in my life been as worked by sales staff as we were today. They were clearly hurting for business in a BIG way.

I couldn’t sleep last night because the hamster in my brain was running along on that wheel as it likes to do sometimes – but the good news is that I think I got a potentially really great project idea out of it. I drew it out to describe it to Mom at lunch today, and she liked it too. Now if I can simply make it reality.

I have SO many projects to bead right now – but I haven’t really been able to plop down and dedicate the time to do it. My Thanksgiving week is looking beautifully devoid of places to be, however, and while I need to finish painting my bedroom before the Open House, there should also be time to get some designing work done too.

Bead Brunch at Nomadic Notions in the morning means I should be crawling into bed about now…

Falling down on the job

Kelly R. told me in class last night that I was falling behind on the blog, and I’ll be darned, she was right! Know what’s funny? I think about what I’m going to put in the blog all the time – the trick is sitting down and writing all the good material that’s in my head. Couldn’t ya’ll just plug into my head once a day instead??

Preparations for the Holiday Open House are coming along fast and furious. Mom and I have a big joint shopping project scheduled for Saturday. Priority #1 – shoes. Priority #2 – holiday decorations, big and small.

And it’s a good thing this day o’ shopping was planned like a week ago. Because this 50 degree weather is kicking my butt! I haven’t wanted to do anything at all today because it’s too darned cold. It’s really quite amazing to me that I ever lived in Wisconsin where today would be a veritable heat wave.

Thursday was a really awesome day for me. I had lunch with an old friend I haven’t seen in four years. Derek and I worked together back in 1999-2000 at a high tech company, and kept in touch for several years afterwards, but eventually drifted apart. Interestingly enough, we both left high tech for self-employment around the same time. He went to grad school and became a licensed counselor and now has his own successful practice. We’ll definitely stay in touch this time.

We ate at The Shady Grove, which is a big Austin favorite. They have a really peaceful and lovely outdoor seating area, which is where Derek & I ate (given that it was 75 degrees yesterday!) and all the tables are gracefully sheltered by an ancient, amazing pecan tree. (It ain’t called Shady Grove for nuthin’) But there was one little thing marring the atmosphere. Dive bombing pecans falling at breakneck speed from the tippy top of the tree, and hitting everywhere! I got hit by three pecans personally – others landed in food, on the table, one hit just right so that Derek’s tea spoon was catapulted from his tea glass across the table. Every three minutes or so, you’d hear the sharp crack of another landing ring across the patio, and we’d all take stock of the damage. It was so absurd, it kind of made up for the annoying part. We vowed to bring our own umbrellas to protect us next time!

Now I should get back to counting out little tiny crystals. Yup! They arrived! So that’s also on this weekend’s task list – getting them photographed and put up on the website for sale. Soon, my friends, soon!