September 30, 2007


I was just sitting by my bedroom window when I heard a young man scream this at his child. The child couldn't have been more than 7 years old. It hurt me to think that this child probably has heard these words repeatedly over the few years he has been on this earth. It reminded me of my childhood.

I've tried to keep this blog mostly about topics related to my jewelry and selling adventures ... but thought, perhaps you would like to know a bit about the PERSON behind the jewelry ?

I was fortunate to have been raised by a Stay at Home ( SAH ) Mom. Her life revolved around my brother and me. She was quite isolated because my father made her so. She had a beautiful singing voice, but all my father would say is " stop your warbling and fix my dinner " ! She had a collection of drawings from high school that were beautiful, but she didn't pursue it after marriage. She didn't even drive, because every time she expressed interest, it would just result in my father belittling her to tears. Thusly, she was isolated and controlled by him.

My brother was a very creative person as well. He loved to draw and could look at something the size of a postage stamp and reproduce it to a picture one foot square - to the finest of detail ! He had several dreams that were crushed by my father. He wanted to be a dancer, a nurse, a cook ( loved to decorate cakes ) an artist ..... all of these dreams were considered to be dreams of a "Sissy" to my father. My brother never realized any of his dreams - he died at 21 in a motor vehicle accident.

I remember being about 8 years old when my Mom started to ask my brother and I if she should divorce "Dad". How is an 8 year old supposed to respond to that ? Well, I responded with fear. He supported us, even if most Fridays he went to the bars and spent most of the paycheck buying drinks for friends, leaving us to eat PB&J for dinner. He was quite well liked by those who only knew him socially.

At home, I always heard these words from dear old dad, " You'll never amount to much," ... " You are going to grow up to be as fat as your mother " ..." You are bow-legged " but at school, I enjoyed learning and was often praised by teachers. I LOVED to go to school !

I was quite a Tomboy through my childhood - didn't want to be called a "Sissy" by my father. But when I started to blossom as a preteen, my Mom got me a beautiful dress for my birthday. Dad came home drunk that night and grabbed my budding breast. Mom lit into him, but it was soon forgotten and chalked up to drunkenness.

When Mom stopped sleeping with dad, he started taking me to remote places, always telling me we were going to go somewhere fun ... always apologizing after, but NEVER drunk. My brother was jealous that I always got to go places with dad. I was ashamed.

It wasn't until I went to college ( first one in my family ) that I went to a roommate's home and saw a REAL family in action. I stopped going home for the weekends and went to her house instead. I spent summers in Florida were my Mom had moved after finally divorcing my dad.

Then I got the news ... Mom had breast cancer. She fought it for two years, but it spread, first to her lungs, then bones, then brain. I was alone with her, holding her hand, when she left her pain ( and me ) behind. She was only 42, my age now.

At that time I didn't know I was going to become a cancer nurse. I went through many different majors in college and ended up with a degree in journalism, but moved back to my childhood home and went back to college to become a nurse.

I have been a Registered Nurse for 15 years now - all spent in Oncology ( cancer nursing ). I have had my certification in Oncology for several years now. I LOVE my job, because I can help patients from both sides of the disease. I HAVE been there as a family member.

All this was brought to the surface by that father yelling at his young son today. I was so upset by that, and other things going on in my life ( the muting from Etsy forums by founder Rob Rokali and friends ) that I decided to take a nap.

Sometimes the mind can make sense of things after a nap.

... and as I was drifting off, I was thinking ... if Rob had to bring his Mom to my cancer center, he would see a TOTALLY different side of me ...but he would also see how I use my humor to keep people smiling despite their fears. I am often commended in RL at how I can sense when it is O. K. to use levity and patients thank me for making their stays there actually FUN - something they hadn't expected.

I am also active in our annual Memorial Service. I play ALL the music for the service. I play my guitar and sing and play my flute. It is VERY HARD for me to do - I am nervous EVERY year, but I do it so that NONE of our service is "canned". It is all done by staff - familiar faces to the families left behind.

I have a very fulfilling life now. I want to move past these last few weeks of Etsy drama and start living it productively again. I felt the need to share this all with you - so you can see there is a LOT more to me than a few posts in the Etsy forums. In comparison, Etsy banning me PALES to what I have triumphed over in my past.

Thanks to all of those who ALREADY knew there was much more to me than my Etsy persona. Your support has meant the world to me !


September 24, 2007

Building Blocks

I remember when I was a kid, I didn't worry about whether I knew how to build a house or not, I just started playing with a couple blocks and stacked them until they began to take on the shape I had in my mind. We are so exploratory at that age. Not afraid to start over again if the blocks fall down.

I got an idea in my head and I am trying to run with it. I secured a couple of domain names for myself and a couple for my BF who plays Jazz guitar. I bought a " Build it tonight " website package off GoDaddy and started playing with it. The templates are rudamentary and the lingo is foreign to me, but I am making some headway, between other activities I am catching up on.

I could ask someone else to build a site for me, and I am sure it would be MUCH better, but the stubborn, independant streak in me tells me I can do it myself. My initial goal is to put up a BASIC website that Jer and I share called B.Z. & Jer's Jazz and Jewelry. I'll learn by playing with the web templates and by next year, when this contract comes up for renewal, I will have a better grasp on what I need to build a better site and add all the essentials such as a shopping cart.

Little blocks placed carefully one by one

low on the ground til the foundation is done

Then reaching higer, two blocks , maybe three

carefully calculating how high it should be

protecting my work from the tail of the dog

and writing about it right here in my blog.

I really didn't know how fun it would be

this " do it yourself " plan is setting me free !

September 23, 2007

Establishing new roots

Since my last post I have secured two domain names - and
I have started uploading products to and put a banner on this blog for direct linking to that site. These are just baby steps on the way to planting myself firmly onto my own website, but I am spreading the seeds far and wide so that I can have many islands for people to visit.
I think I will take the rest of the day off ... go for a long walk and then relax in a bubble bath ! Later I will do my nails and play my guitar. Relaxing is what Sundays are for, right ?!

September 22, 2007

Blue Skys - Smoothe Sailing

It took a little fancy steering, but I managed to get through the choppy waters and now I am full steam ahead. As a friendly bloke once said to me..... FRIGATE !

Moving forward, the only decision left for me to make is " What to do with my Mintd shop " ?

I have moved my inventory off Etsy and I am going to slowly add my best " Jewelry for the masses " beaded pieces in between my more refined Sterling Silver and gemstone pieces. I had hoped to keep them separate for the sake of branding, but for now they will have to learn to live side by side in peace ;>)

Ahhhhhh, it is sooooooo quiet and peaceful out here in the ocean . I don't know why I was so afraid to take this voyage. Just a few clouds left in the sky, but not a one of them ominous.
I think I'll adjust my sails and head for the Land Down Under !

September 21, 2007

Earth Tears

I am quoting off of this blog:


There's an insanely long but interesting discussion going on over at UEN:, four of the banned have now publicly told their stories:
BlondezillaBeads4Fun (BZ)
BenCanDanceAs you can see, the other three are sellers, who no longer can change their avatars (that's what happens when you get muted, and thus also when banned).EDIT: The fifth person has just brought her identity to light - quirke.For people who have been told in the banning email to "thrive", I hardly understand how that's possible when a shop is handicapped so severely.


There are SO MANY who can express it much better than I can, and I want to thank Elizabeth for compiling the information into one concise area.

This incident has forced me to become more organized. I am compiling a long over due portfolio of items I have already sold and organizing my inventory. My plan had been to sell ONLY my Sterling Silver ( high end ) jewelry over at Mintd and to sell my " jewelry for the masses" at Etsy. I will have to rethink that now.

Hopefully, I can build my own website where I can have clear categories for my various styles of Jerwelry that I make. I will annouce that here when it is brought into being.

Again, thanks to all who have supported me through this unexpected turn of events !


~ B.Z.

Adjusting my Sails

You know, it’s not the end of the world to me that I am not able to post in the Etsy forums anymore …but people need to look around and see the bigger picture here.
Some friends and even anonymous people have really put things into perspective for me, and I don’t see this as such a bad thing for me personally anymore.
I am a fairly new internet user and surely made many mistakes that newbies make. One of them was thinking I could only sell my wares on Etsy because I don’t have the skills to build a website.
Well, my friends can help me through that process, and I found them on Etsy - so I am now seeing this as an evolutionary step …
Thanks to the actions of Etsy Admins, I no longer feel I have to go in the direction of the wind … I can learn how to adjust my sails.

September 15, 2007



In the silence

the wind sings a lullaby

in the silence

you may hear more

silence is what silence is not

silence is awareness

silence is loud.

Mahfooz Ali

I am sorry to report that I will no longer be able to post to threads in the Etsy forums.

Yet another transition to adapt to.

I will no longer be seen or heard there, but I will be lurking.



September 13, 2007


As we all feel the change over from Summer to Fall, it is especially acute for me right now. this is a segue in my life that has many transitions and transformations.
The first and most obvious is the fact that I am starting a new blog here at blogger. Along with that, I hope to be putting a renewed and enthusiastic effort into the process of maintaining an active blog. I have met and befriended many special people in my efforts to sell my Jewelry on-line. I hope to keep them up to date on the many facets of my life, as they do with their blogs. I really enjoy keeping in touch this way.
Another transition that has been developing over the past few months is my commitmet to work in Sterling Silver and precious gems. I owe this new adventure to a dear friend I met at Etsy. WhiteFluffyDogs was a friend before she ever bought anything from me. She saw me growing as an artist and knew it was time for me to break into the Sterling scene. With her gentle nudging and encouragement I finally took the plunge and have been having a great time with it ! Not only did I buy a bunch of wire and sterling findings and beautiful gemstones, but I also learned to Oxidize silver and bought other supplies to continue to try new things. It has been very rewarding and I continue to pursue the new ideas that have come to me as I explore the possibilities that have opened up to me.
I am proud to show you my first major sterling silver and precious gem project ! This beautiful bracelet shown above.
There is yet another transition happening in my life right now. Two full-time nurses have left the clinic where I work delivering Chemotherapy to cancer patients. We only employ three Full-time nurses, so it was a big blow to our staffing, which was never optimal. One exodus was planned for, as the nurse was leaving to teach at a local college. The other exodus was sudden, but not totally unexpected. Our army reserve nurse has been called to duty. She will back-fill for nurses going to Iraq. Her service will be in Louisiana, for at least a year. We can not "fill" her position, as it needs to be available for her when she returns from duty.
What does this mean for me ? I work part-time, by choice, so that I can have the time and energy to pursue my jewelry making hobby. For this to coincide with my new enthusiasm working in sterling silver is unfortunate, as it will interfere with my ability to follow through on that. I have agreed to work full-time to help fill in the shortage of nurses at the clinic. I can not do this for an extended amount of time, as I tend to burn out if I can not drink from the pool of creativity.
I also play guitar and must prepare for our annual memorial service at which I perform. We are a busy office that treats both cancer patients and hematology ( blood disorder ) patients, and although we do better every year to keep people in remission from their diseases, we lose about 200 souls per year. Many of whom have become like family to us. It is a hard job, but comes with many rewards.
I hope I can juggle it all and still have time to unwind with my craft. I will document my challenges and successes here for my friends to share. I find comfort and renewed spirit sharing with my interweb friends, sometimes even more so than those I have in RL. Thanks to those who follow my babblings, I feel loved, admired and supported - you know who you are ;>)

September 12, 2007

I finally made it to Blogger !

Hello friends and new visitors !

I finally made it to Blogger ! I had started a blog over on Yahoo, here , but just wasn't motivated to keep it updated because some of my friends don't have a Yahoo account, and here on Blogger ANYONE can read and comment ! Yippee !

So I will be posting over here now, and hopefully, more frequently. So see you soon with some photos and stories and laughs ;>)