Lemont Fair Fun

My Holiday Market started in earnest November 1, at the 7th Annual Lemont Township Neighbor to Neighbor Vendor/Crafter Market.


I set up my table among several other vendors and had a blast seeing the creativity represented.


Aurora Rose Boutique owners presented their Quirkals line with some quirky sayings.


They offer custom printed coasters on tile and wood.


Across from me Designs by Starla etched away, and made me a present.


They have some of their inventory at Aurora Rose Boutique for the Holiday Season.


Greeting cards got me started into this artistic adventure, so chatting with my neighbor was lovely.


A few ornaments and my violin clef earrings walked away. The fair supports the Lemont Township Family Assistance Fund, helping neighbors in need.


I stopped by Aurora Rose Boutique for a shelf update.


I swapped out a few earrings.


Scarf Season is official now.


They will also be hosting these ornaments in their shop on Stephen Street in Lemont.


A Happy Star’s cuddlies always cheer me up.


Harry Potter fans will find some merchandise here.


Fairies abound, along with quirky stitchwork.


Check out their upcoming events and shop local!


My next fairs include the ADA Holiday Fair downtown on December 5,  the Waukegan West class of 1990 fundraiser December 6, and the Bucktown Holiday Fair December 13 & 14.

Maraviglia at the Winter EXPO

This weekend I dropped off 70 pieces for the 12th Annual Winter Arts & Crafts EXPO at the Evanston Art Center.


It was a veritable tagging fest the night before.


The EXPO opens on Friday evening and will be open to the public Monday through Saturday 10 am to 4 pm and Sundays 12 pm to 4 pm until December 22.


The Annual Winter Arts & Crafts EXPO features original, handmade works of jewelry, ceramics, fiber, metal, glass, painting, photography, mixed-media and more. It offers Chicagolanders a venue for purchasing Christmas presents while supporting 100 local artists.


A Preview Party for early shopping will be held on Friday, November 21st from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. (Tickets are $30 in advance, $35 at the door).


A Student Expo opens on Saturday, December 6th from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Jewelry Fest will be held on Saturday, December 6th from 10 am to 4 pm.


I’ll be gallery sitting on December 19 for a few hours.


I included some keychains for Mens’ Shopping Day on Saturday, December 20th from 10 am to 4 pm (though I think they’re supposed to shop for their leading ladies).


The last shopping day will be December 22nd.


All proceeds from the EXPO sale will benefit EAC’s ongoing exhibition, scholarship, and outreach programs, which is where I got my start exhibiting.


The Evanston Art Center is moving so it is also the last month to peruse the charming historic Harley Clarke Mansion before it changes residents.


New pendants for dibs

I made a few new pendants this month that I almost do not want to part with.


The studio has been shiny and bright, luring me in.


Someone posted Isaiah 55:12 in a piece of their work, so I went to my art Bible and ripped that page out for a pendant.


Don’t you love its message?


May it bring much joy to its future wearer.


Meanwhile, Iggy Azalea’s ear worm was in my head, so I took a piece of Hello Holiday tissue paper and stamped its theme onto the paper (but not quite out of my head).


I was also feeling the need to create an empowerment talisman with royal purple.


American Authors’ song reminds me to live each day to the fullest this year, so I wrote their lyrics out too.


For the Evanston Art Center’s 12th Annual Winter Arts & Crafts EXPO I created a green pendant, which will debut there November 22.


For their Men’s Shopping Day: Saturday, December 20 from 10am to 4 pm I also made a keychain (though I think they’re supposed to get help shopping for the leading ladies in their lives).


Turning the clock back has me feeling like I am chasing daylight as the sun sets sooner.


I also used some scraps to create mini pendants.


Clearly purple is vibing with me these days.


I’ve also got a few more earrings in my head that will hopefully come out of my hands soon.


I have not loaded these on Etsy yet but you can message me via Facebook for your selection or special order. Holiday pendants are coming too.


Lots of ornaments are in the works and some will float around Chicagoland next month. Etsy will gradually update between holiday fairs.


If you like to shop in person, you can peruse The ADA Holiday Fair downtown on December 5, the Waukegan West class of 1990 fundraiser December 6, and the Bucktown Holiday Fair December 13 & 14.


Learning and growing with NEW

NEW’s Crain’s Small Business Day was a blast, and full of nuggets of wisdom by our fabulous guest speakers. During our meet and greet ladies mingled and were introduced to NetworkHoncho.com with their pop-up of a new small business networking tool that is currently in beta launch.


Members and visitors also perused my wares at my pop-up table.


Then we gathered around for formal introductions and a business card exchange, with a variety of very interesting businesses represented.


After learning more about each other we split into three groups for roundtable discussions.


Peggy Goddeau discussed retirement planning, highlighting how inflation and taxation do not increase at the same rate, and we thus have to base our retirement planning on projected true buying power. She recommends a balance between cash flow and debt management based on three categories of assets: protection, savings and growth. As a financial advisor with The Heartland Group, Peggy offers consulting services for anyone at any age to ensure their retirement is on the right track.


Dr. Crystal Foreseman Landers offered wellness tips which included an 80/20 rule for eating whole foods (80% of the time), and allowing for 20% of not-so-nutritious meal or snack decisions. This would allow for 2 ‘cheat’ meals a week, creating less pressure than a vigorous diet. She also recommended having lean protein with each meal to counteract food cravings, and paying attention to what we are eating instead of multitasking while we chew. She also recomended drinking 1/2 of your body weight in ounces to stay properly hydrated.  Dr. Crystal offers additional naturopathic health tips at Living Tree Natural Health, Inc.


Author and speaker Niquenya D. Fulbright discussed the 4 P’s of profit, which are not price, product place or promotion, but passion, purpose, partners and productivity. She recommends that to achieve a goal, we need to make a list of weekly steps to get there. This makes long-range planning far more effective, because we know we can do one thing a week in a specific category, and then feel more accomplished about doing another thing the next week. She also stated that sunk cost should never be considered when making a decision (and who isn’t guilty of hanging on to something just because we spent so much time and money on it already?). As President and CEO of Building Bridges Consulting, Niquenya transforms dreamers into successful entrepreneurs by giving them the tools to turn their passion into a viable business.


After all this insightful learning it was time for a pint and we gathered around to dine on our host Shannon’s Irish Pub’s delicious food.


NEW will gather tomorrow in Geneva for our November Meet & Munch. We will revisit the lovely Peaceful Parlour for some tea time and to gather ideas for eco-friendly holiday shopping.


Peaceful Parlour is an eco-friendly shopper’s paradise located in Geneva, IL. The boutique offers products that are locally made, USA made, natural or organic, hand crafted and made from renewable or sustainable materials. Their focus is to find products with environmental and community benefits, supporting local artists, small businesses, fair trade and women co-op groups around the world.


Due to Thanksgiving, this will also be our only event for November. No Wine, Women and Wellness on 11/27, since we’re all likely to be gathered around dinner tables.

Photos copyright NetworkHoncho.

NEW – The Network of Entrepreneurial Women is a group of Chicagoland business women who are upgrading business networking with fun and creative events that inspire attendees to work together, refer each other and most of all cheer each other on as the membership succeeds. Events rotate around various suburbs on a semimonthly basis, usually the 2nd Wednesday and 4th Thursday of the month. RSVP for our upcoming events at Meetup, or like us on Facebook and check up on the calendar there.

Jigging Frosties

My offline life is speeding up so the online blog is getting off-schedule. Here’s a peek at what pulls me away from the computer these days.


In mid-October I was able to purchase Brenda Schweder’s Now That’s A Jig Starter Kit, which I eagerly anticipated.


I consulted with Brenda via email on the various Rounds she had, and ordered the Big Rounds set for my Frosty the Snowman Holiday Ornaments.


I joyfully set up the jig on a sunny day.


Then I dove in with the frosty-making.


Once I had added an ‘allowance’ for the wire, twisting the strips was easy-peasy.


Having the option of making various sizes of Frosties is great.


It beats using the household mandrels I used last year, and makes the process much faster.


I still do some hand-bending after the base is completed.


Then I heat up the griddle for their adornments.


Sometimes a bit of smashing is required to flatten the snowmen out again.


I tried setting up the jig for trees and angels too but that requires a little more finessing (more pegs in particular).


Productivity is booming for the holiday season!


You’ll see my frosties, angels and other holiday ornaments on Etsy, at Aurora Rose Boutique in Lemont, Dragonfly Boutique in Evanston, The Evanston Art Center’s EXPO, the Waukegan West class of 1990 fundraiser and the Bucktown Holiday Fair.


Necklace pendants, earrings and key chains are also in the works.


Golden Radiance

Tomorrow is Halloween, but this year I am more in Samhain mode.


I don’t know of any costume parties to go to, though the coming weekend is packed.


So here are some photos of the glorious Fall colors we’re having this month.


I love the brilliance of the golds and reds.


The ‘stoplight’ trees are my favorite.


The skies are a glorious blue and the sun is out with its brilliance.


We still have some bunnies hopping about.


he trees are so brilliant.


Colors abound.


Watching the progression is fascinating.


I can’t help but think of Monty Python when the leaves flutter about me.


Here’s hoping the Indian Summer weather holds for a few more weeks into November.


Saturday I’ll be in Lemont for a craft show from 9-12:30 with these three pieces.


I’ll pop by Aurora Rose Boutique afterwards where they have lots of fun Halloween gifts!


Want more trees?


I can’t get enough either.


Happy change of season to you!


May you harvest much goodness.

Lemont’s Neighbor to Neighbor Fair

On Saturday, All Saint’s Day, I’ll be heading to Lemont for a half-day pop-up. The 7th Annual Lemont Township Neighbor to Neighbor Vendor/Crafter Market will be held on Saturday, November 1st from 9:00 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. at the Lemont Township Community Center (located NW of the Timberline Drive & 127th Street intersection).


I was part of this fair last year and was impressed with the variety of businesses represented. The Vendor/Crafter Market was created to provide an opportunity for those in our community to browse through the many products and crafts that are locally available and created, and to raise funds for the Lemont Township Family Assistance Fund, helping neighbors in need.


A 50/50 raffle will raise additional funds to benefit the Lemont Township Family Assistance Fund, which provides emergency assistance for households in crisis.  Funds have been awarded to assist with unpayable bills or prescriptions.


I look forward to seeing what pieces customers snap up this year. Early October proved to be a head start of holiday shopping to some with ornaments flying off at the Ravenswood ArtWalk.


Earrings and pendants were popular too.


I garnered some custom orders that week and enjoyed making presents for customers’ loved ones.


I will see you at 16300 Alba Street in Lemont IL 60439 Saturday morningEtsy will be closed that day, but fully operational the rest of the month.


Final Week for Show & Tell


Yesterday I picked up my Kedzie’s Red Admirals diptych from the Ecology Center as one part of the Adult Show & Tell Show closes.


It was fun to peruse the lovely art work by other Evanstonians earlier this month.


It is always inspiring to see artists interpret nature themes and be inspired by them.


Nature is so rich with inspiration itself.


Fellow FUSEDChicago artist Mary Krebs-Smythe has a few works in the show.


This is the final week to peruse our art at Curt’s Cafe.


I swung by there and love the cozy atmosphere.


The art there is quite vibrant.


My Odonata look nice against the brick backdrop.


Stop by Curt’s Cafe before Wednesday, October 29 to see all the pieces from various Evanston artists.


Fall is creating its own art (same tree as above a few weeks later).


Maraviglia at Dragonfly Boutique

Evanston has some lovely new boutiques that I got to peruse during the charity wine walk. One of my early favorites was Dragonfly Boutique. It is a cozy shop containing clothing, jewelry, fun home decor gift items and art work.


Mom and I shopped there for our birthdays and we had a lovely conversation with owner Amy Boone. She offered a very encouraging atmosphere to try things on and gave sizing advice for some of the pieces, as not all mediums and larges are labelled equally.


I love all the quirky accessories in the store and the way Amy has curated her store to contain unique pieces loaded with personality.


As the conversation progressed, I was invited to bring in my jewelry, and Amy selected a few pieces to shop for at Dragonfly. So Evanstonians can now shop locally for my wares at 1309 Chicago Avenue.


My caged Amazonite earrings already found a home.


I am playing with new scarf pendants on a scarf received as a bonus gift for our Fall loot. It matches my blue coat quite well.


This plum peplum sweater will be worn much during the holiday season.


The happy shirt has made a few trips to to the Lake and Hip Circle.


Go check out the other great jewelry my Maraviglia are visiting with.


I’m excited about wearing my new Fall dresses (it was too cold to debut them at the Ravenswood ArtWalk).


Dragonfly-df specializes in contemporary apparel for active women who want to create an individual style without breaking the budget. They offer a unique range of home decor and accessories, as well as gift items to please any creative person. Check the store out on Facebook!


Bahá’í House of Worship

A few weeks a go a friend and I visited the Bahá’í House of Worship for North America. I’ve passed by this structure many times but never visited the grounds.


First we fed our bodies with a lovely brunch at Walker Brothers’ pancake house.


After our savory and sweet pancakes we drove to the temple and parked across the street by the lovely Gillson park, but a visitor lot is also available.


Just stepping onto the grounds created a sense of serenity. There are nine gardens with fountains surrounding the nonagon building. The numerical value of the four letters ABHA, representing the prayer “Alláh u Abhá” (God is Most Glorious) in Arabic and the word baha (for Bahá’u’lláh) add up to total nine, one of reasons Bahá’í Houses of Worship are nine-sided.


Each side features a scripture and lovely intricate symbols carved into the building. This photo says: “My love is my stronghold–he that enters therein is safe and secure.”


Apparently the 1893 World’s Columbian Exposition in Chicago introduced the Baha’i Faith  to the United States, and gained a dedicated disciple in Corinne True, who helped identify the site of the temple. Construction on this building began in 1921 and ended in 1953 with interruptions during World War II and the Great Depression.


There are only seven Baha’i temples, and the Wilmette site is the largest and oldest surviving temple. The cladding is made of white portland cement concrete including clear and white quartz aggregate, fabricated and constructed by John Joseph Earley and the Earley Studio. Designed by principal architect Louis Bourgeouis, it was added to the National Register of Historic Places in 1978. It is also one of the Seven Wonders of Illinois by the Illinois Bureau of Tourism since 2007.


The Baha’i House of Worship reflects the spiritual truths of the Baha’i Faith: the oneness of God, the oneness of humanity and the oneness of religion, which I like. Each pillar has carvings of prominent symbols of various religions and faiths, representing that unity. The symbols include the Cross, the star and crescent, the Star of David, and the original swastika design, an ancient symbol having arms bent at right angles, used for thousands of years as a representative symbol of world religions such as Hinduism, Buddhism, and Jainism.


We sat inside for a bit to meditate in silence and view the lovely dome. Inside the auditorium scriptures, written by by Bahá’u’lláh, emphasizing our oneness with God and the world grace each entrance door. The building is open to visitors for free throughout the year, with services held at 9:15 a.m., 12:30 p.m. and 5.15 p.m. Daily. I stared at the center of the dome for a bit, which has a lighted version of the Greatest Name in gold in Arabic (I didn’t know what it meant at the time).  The seats in the auditorium face the Shrine of Bahá’u’lláh in ‘Akká, Israel.


Per Wikipedia: “Bahá’í literature directs that a House of Worship should be built in each city and town, and emphasizes that its doors must be open to all regardless of religion, or any other distinction. The Bahá’í laws emphasize that the spirit of the House of Worship must be a gathering place where people of all religions may worship God without denominational restrictions.”


My friend and I then sat outside in one of the gardens on a lovely day and did Goddess and Faerie Card readings, which gave us goosebumps in both of us having our intuition affirmed about the questions in our lives.


Monarchs and Cabbage Whites fluttered among the flowers, and numerous families wandered the grounds, all in a respectful and peaceful manner.


After some time we walked across the street and watched the boats in the harbor.


Then we made our way to the beach and reflected on the water.


My friend dipped her toes in.


It was a very centering afternoon for me, and I look forward to returning to the beach and the temple soon.


You can take a virtual tour here. The auditorium and gardens are open from 6 am to 10 pm and the welcome center has posted hours on the website.


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