Monday, December 29, 2008

Yes we do teach classes!

The FamiLee Jewels are frequently asked if we teach the techniques that we use to make our jewelry. The answer is: Yes!

We do teach classes through a home party system. You can host a class in your home or mine.

We teach a minimum of 4 adult students per 2 hour class. The maximum would be 10 students.

The price is $20 per person for the lesson and the supply fee depends on the technique being taught.

We teach beginner classes for those that have never tried jewelry making and project classes for those with some experience. We provide tools, beads, and findings.

Basic bead stringing. supply fee $5.00. This is a perfect class for those with no jewelry making experience or for those just looking for a fun way to spend a couple of hours using your creative spirit.
The student will make a necklace and pair of earrings.
She will learn the techniques of stringing on beading wire, crimping and simple loops.

Multi-strand necklaces. supply fee $10.00.
This class is great for people with some jewelry making experience. It explores the different means of attaching multiple strands of beads.
The student will make a multi strand necklace and pair of double drop earrings.
She will learn the above techniques and the additional skills of wrapped loops and using multi strand findings.

Memory wire. supply fee $10.00.
This class will introduce the student to the wonders of memory wire. This specialty wire has been manufactured in a way that it keeps it's coiled shape allowing the user to create jewelry that does not require clasps.
The student will make a multiple loop memory wire bracelet with charm end, and a memory wire necklace.
She will learn the techniques of simple loops and working with memory wire.

Earrings. supply fee $5.00.
This class explores the many style of simple earrings.
The student will make 5 pair of earrings including drop earrings, double drop earrings and hoop earrings. She will learn the techniques of simple loops, wrapped loops and working with jump rings.

Ankle bracelets. supply fee $10.00.
A great class for girls night out or the beginning of summer, paint your toenails and make a sassy new ankle bracelet for spring.
The student will make 2 ankle bracelets one beaded, one chain.
She will learn the techniques of wrapped loops, bead stringing with beading wire, crimping, and working with jump rings.

Chandelier earrings. supply fee $12.00.
This class explores the possibilities of chandelier earrings from delicate to Bollywood, there is something for everyone.
The student will make 2 pair of chandelier earrings using her choice of styles.
She will learn the techniques of simple loops and wrapped loops.
Watch with interchangeable bands. supply fee $20.00
This is a great class for those that enjoy fashion watches.
The student will make 3 easily interchangeable bands for the same watch face.
She will learn the techniques of bead stringing with beading wire, crimping, wrapped loops and working with jump rings.

Rings. Class fee $10.00
A fast, fun class to make simple bead and wire rings.
The student will make a simple bead ring, a wire spiral ring, and a wire heart ring.
She will learn simple wire wrap techniques.

Charm bracelets. supply fee 10.00.
This class teaches the basics of making a fashionable bead charm bracelet.
The student will learn the techniques of wrapped loops and working with jump rings.

Basic Wire wrap. supply fee $20.00
For those that are drawn to working with wire.
The student will learn how to wrap a cabochon, and make a cord necklace to hang it on.

Embellished Wire Wrap. supply fee $20.00
Once you have mastered the basic wire wrap this class will teach you how to embellish your work with loops, swirls and multiple wires.

We bring all necessary supplies, samples of our work and also offer a selection of kits and tools for sale so that people can continue to make jewelry once class is over.
To book a class or discuss the possibilities contact .

Friday, December 26, 2008


Today there is a new member in our FamiLee. Fred and I have been discussing adopting another dog. We were on Petfinder Tuesday "just looking" to see what animals were available and both of us were drawn to the photo of a Jack Russell mix at the SPCA in Queensbury. We drove up there on Tuesday but an hours worth of Aviation Mall traffic made us too late to get acquainted. We returned today, fell in love, and brought him home. Rascal is a great little dog. He is small. about 25 pounds but sturdily built, lively and affectionate. He already wears a deep scratch on his nose because Bubba didn't want to play.

Rascal had quite the afternoon. He picked out his new person, Fred. He had a long car ride complete with a walk in Beman Park because Bonnie got called in to work on their way home. He has explored the house, chased the cats and now is curled up sleeping in Fred's lap-and he snores!

Welcome to the FamiLee Rascal, it's a crazy life and we hope you will love it.

FamiLee Christmas

The FamiLee Jewels have had a wonderful Christmas full of dear friends, family from near and far, babies, good food, lovingly chosen presents, lots of ripped paper boxes and bows...(yes of course Freddy preferred the boxes), and Wii. We are truly blessed to have such a wonderful life.
Christmas Eve was spent at David and Tammy and Ella's house where we were welcomed by their 3 dogs Duke, Duchess and Vanna. Carl was home from Colorado and it was great to see him again. I had chosen Carl's name in the gift scramble and made him 2 sterling silver guitar picks, one inscribed with his name and the other with the name of his band Finding Nowhere, he really liked them! Fred had chosen David's name and made him a pen and pencil set out of scrap cherry wood from the stairs in David's new house. It is nice to be able to create such personal gifts for those we love.
Everyone enjoyed the babies, passing them from person to person, and seeing Freddy run around. It was great to have little ones at Christmas again. We haven't had that much excitement since Josh was about 10 and that was a long time ago.

Christmas morning we drove up to see Becky and Dennis and the boys. Freddy enjoyed his fisher price farm and his wooden puzzle with sounds. Becky made lots of luscious cinnamon rolls and coffee. I think she is living on coffee now with those 3 little ones to keep up with. She looks great though and it's only been 3 weeks since she had Liam and Rory.

We got a little scare when we got to the house though. We had purchased them a Wii game system and when we walked in there was a Wii box in their foyer. Turns out it was a joke from neighbors Kelly and Jeremy who had hidden a Christmas ornament in it for them. So they loved their Wii and all its accessories, I just hope they can find the time to enjoy it. We had a chance to wish Merry Christmas to Sueanne, Jimmy, and Meredith while we were there.
We came home to meet Ella and have a relaxing rest of the day, cooking dinner and playing with Melissa's new Wii. I am not a video gaming person they really never could hold my interest for very long but this is fun. We spent the afternoon bowling in the family room and Ella was the big winner. I hope that Fred didn't mess up his real bowling game trying to Wii bowl.
As I write this I am drinking morning coffee and eating the best biscotti in the entire world made by my sister Donna. I look forward to her biscotti baking frenzy every Christmas and am hard pressed to share it with anyone. I told you my family was wonderful.

So Merry Christmas everyone. I hope your Holidays were filled with joy, love and laughter.

Monday, December 22, 2008

Firetruck Santa Saturday...does Santa look a little familiar?????

Every year on the Saturday before Christmas our local firefighters from the Malta Ridge Volunteer Fire Department delight young and old residents by driving around our neighborhoods, greeting local families, and passing out candy canes all while giving Santa a ride on the top of the truck. Becky and Melissa have not missed a Firetruck Santa Saturday in 22 years.

This year we had planned to have a Holiday brunch with snow tubing, lots of great food and out of town guests but 12 inches of snow and another big storm on the way changed our plans.

Becky still made it down from Glens Falls with her 3 little ones, so we had breakfast and went snow tubing while waiting for Santa.

Freddy J loved the snow, laughing all the way down the hill on his snow tube that was so big he could lay down in it. Liam and Rory were less than thrilled about the cold so Auntie Lissa took them back inside where the 3 of them stayed nice and toasty by the fire.
Finally after much waiting for them we heard the sirens grabbed all 3 boys and ran outside. To find that Pip was helping out Santa. Santa-Pip was on top of the Firetruck Ho-Ho-Ho-ing at the top of his lungs! (Pip does not need a PA system). He was obviously having a great time. The firemen were kind enough to get out and take pictures for us.

Freddy loved the truck and Santa (he saw them last year but I don't think he remembered), the twins were just happy to have full bellies, and Fred, Melissa, Becky and I are happy to have carried on the tradition with a new generation of the FamiLee.

Monday, December 15, 2008

Rest in Peace precious Emily

Our beautiful greyhound Emily died last week.She was 14 years young and we have had the pleasure of her company for the last 7 years.

You see Emily was a retired racing greyhound. She was a good racer, retiring at age 5 when she was too old to race any more. She then had several litters of puppies for her racing owners before leaving the Florida panhandle for the great Northeast.

Snow didn't seem to phase her after the first leap off the deck that left her buried in it up to her chest. Once she figured out how to run through it she was fine!

Emily had a kind and gentle soul. She didn't get along well with other dogs (except Harley, Becky and and Dennis' Chiuabrador) but loved people of all ages, demanding attention in the form of pets and ear scritchies from young and old.

She loved taking walks, racing on the track around the apple trees (she built it all by herself) and digging holes in our gardens, but her favorite activity of all was sleeping on the couch stretched waaaay out so that when you shared a seat with her you only got a corner. Then she would put her head in your lap.

She has been a great companion and friend, and we will miss her always.

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Cassie Your necklaces are ready!!!!

I have been finishing up some special orders this week and one of them was for my girlfriend Cassie.
Cassie went on Vacation this summer and mined for gemstones. She found quite a few including the amethyst and clear quartz "Herkimer diamond" in these 2 necklaces.

Cassie I hope you are having a great time at your concert tonight. Melissa will tell me all about it when she gets home, I'm sure.
I have been working on finishing up some jewelry and I finished your necklaces. I wrapped your amethyst and quartz crystal in sterling silver and put a ring on them. That way you can wear whichever one you want on the sterling silver chain. I hope you like them and I'm sorry it took so long. It has been a long time since you went mining this summer and found them. I have not found any earring findings small enough for your peridot chips but I will keep looking for them.
I hope you like your jewelry. Thank you for asking me to be your jeweler.

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Sparkles and Ice

Today I broke out the camera and tried my hand at photographing some more jewelry.

It has been a challenge to achieve clear shots with good lighting and accurate color that also have an artistic flair.

While the results are not exactly what I had in mind I was able to capture a couple of pix that show the chandelier crystal jewelry we have been working on.

I like the crystals paired with vintage brass for a more casual look and especially with sterling silver for an icy cool and glamorous look.

What do you think?

Sunday, December 7, 2008


Reading is a passion a pleasure and an escape. It is one of my favorite pastimes. Biographies, novels, true crime, history, art books--- there is always a stack of books to be read on the bedside table and a list in my wallet of favorite authors and titles that interest me. Garage sales, library sales and second hand book stores are favorite hunting grounds and (a division of EBAY) has also been a great source of reading material.
In June of this year I was gifted with a Kindle. My incredibly indulgent husband and daughter Fred and Melissa came up with the was inspired.
For those of you not familiar with Kindle it is Amazon.coms version of an electronic reader. It is compact, lightweight, convenient and in my opinion the way of the future---and I am not a gadget person.
Kindle gives you access to over 100,000 books as well as newspapers, magazines, and assorted weblogs. They are available almost immediately over Amazon's cellular data network called Whispernet which is included with the purchase price of Kindle without an additional monthly fee. The Whispernet gives you access to Amazon's Kindle store You can search for, shop for and purchase books and as on the website your personal recommendations will be listed.
Kindle is easy to read. The screen is a grey scale display with no back lighting so it reads like print on paper. There are text sizes from tiny to blind as a bat that accommodate your eyesight.
The controls are easy to use. Large buttons to page forward and back and a scroll wheel to access and navigate the menus.
Kindles battery remains charged for 3-4 days, longer if you only turn on the Whispernet connection when you need it. Recharging takes 2 hours.
Kindle allows me to read more than one book at a time and remembers my place in each book. It also allow me to mark quotes and make notes for future reference.
Despite the fact that Kindle is a high tech device it is easy to forget about it when you are reading. Like reading any good print book, when you become immersed in the story the device "disappears."
I have really only discovered one drawback to Kindle. It is difficult to read in a public place. Kindle is a magnet to the curious. Whether on the train, waiting in a doctors office or in the break room at work I find myself answering questions and giving Kindle demos to people not familiar with the device.
A small price to pay for the convenience.

Saturday, December 6, 2008

Our newest Treasures (jewels beyond compare)

The FamiLee Jewels are proud and happy to announce our newest jewels Liam Patrick and Rory Jacob born December 4Th at 9:59 and 10:00 AM respectively.
They arrived a little earlier than their anticipated delivery date of the 8Th but both are healthy and out of the special care nursery.
Becky, Dennis and big brother Freddy are all doing well and enjoying the new arrivals.
Freddy J has been spending lots of quality time with Mim and Pip and Grammy and Pappy.
Below are my favorite pictures of the two so far. Two hours old lying in their isolettes in the special care nursery 6 feet apart in exactly the same position.
Liam Patrick
9:59 AM
19 1/4 inches long
6 lbs 15.6 oz
Rory Jacob
10:00 AM
20 inches
7 Lbs 5.4 oz