Tuesday, April 28, 2009

What to do?

Ah, what to do with a night without plans. It seems that I have been so busy lately, that I have no idea what to do with a free night. However, tonight, I found myself without plans, except not to go home. Hang out with friends (which it turns out were all busy) or chill alone, away from home. With only the latter as a choice, I found myself apprehensive about it all day, until it was time to leave.

I left work and headed to The Bridge Pizza. I have always liked it there but had never gone alone. As I enjoyed my slice of pie and a Cold Smoke, I people watched, and just enjoyed my surroundings. Frank Sinatra style music was on the overhead, and I really relaxed. I wondered what I had been apprehensive about. I was...calm. I had no worries, no anxiety, nothing of stress, for almost an hour. As I was getting up to leave, I glanced to my left, and a friendly, middle aged woman smiled at me. I felt a need, a want, to sit down and chat with her. We both gushed about how much we enjoy this town that I am proud to call home. I found it difficult to leave, and feeling as though I should invite her along, I couldn't, knowing that I needed tonight to be just about me.

From there, I headed to The Wilma Theater. Having been there a couple of times before with Justin, but never alone, I was unsure of which film to see. I chose Sunshine Cleaning. I sat in the front row of the balcony and took in the experience. What a fabulous film! I giggled, smirked, and even found myself teary a few times. I had never heard of this film, however, leave it to the Wilma to shed light on an under exposed gem. I encourage all to go out and see it.

From there, I headed to Pattee Canyon for a drive. As it was snowy and overcast in Missoula, I was just decompressing, letting the "real world" back in. After that, I headed to a shop, where, as luck would have it, I parked next to Justin. I had thought to call him to see if I should pick anything up, just as he had thought to call me about the same. Same page...almost. He was upbeat, and I found myself growing moody and unsocial. I need to be happy...not just for the people around me, but for me.

I should note that things are going great for me. I am currently doing a lot of custom design at work, relationship is great, etc. I just seem to be in an April funk right now.

I eagerly await May.

Iris that I planted in my flower garden in Iowa.

Saturday, April 25, 2009

More custom design coming my way!

Just when I think that I will be sizing rings and doing repair work for all eternity, my sales staff gets even more custom work for me. In the last two weeks I have finished THREE and have started another, and now I have a new one that I will carve on Tuesday. I absolutely love it again! I'm even looking for design contests as well. If anyone comes across anything, be sure to let me know about it.

Below are two of the three that I finished recently.

Life is funny sometimes. I can be easily frustrated with my job one week, and then completely satisfied with it the next. I should be happy...I get to play at work!

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Trip summary and contemplating things...

I was in Moab for five days, and found myself wondering if I didn't have a steady job, would I stay in one place for an extended period of time. (I think I even mentioned this to Justin when I returned). I have never traveled the world and I now find myself regretting it. Missoula is the farthest away from "home" that I have ever lived, however, I feel more at home here than I ever did back there.

I know that I have to have nature around me. Be it mountains, desert or otherwise, as long as a walk in the woods or a stroll along a river is close at hand, I will be at peace.

Recently, a conflict in my personal and professional life made me wonder another thing...am I where I am supposed to be professionally? Should I remain a jeweler and designer, or should I search out another career? It seems that no matter what I do, or how well I do it, I can't satisfy everyone. My family and close friends say that I was born to design...sometimes I agree, other times, not so much. With design comes the stress to be perfect and please everyone, which is impossible. I have a hard enough time satisfying myself, as I am my own worst critic. Ultimately, I know that I will always be a jeweler. It is what I love, but sometimes exploring other options is important as well.

It also seems that I am in a darker mood lately. I am correlating it with my trip to Iowa last month. I don't think anything happened to set me off but I do realize that I haven't been as diligent on taking my vitamins since my return. Perhaps it is related, or it may be that I am just impatient for Spring to stay and turn into Summer. Only time will tell, but in the meantime, I am trying to be bubbly again.

Back to my trip to Moab...I did have a good time. Mindy and I hiked 90% of Arches National Park in two days. I took almost 500 pictures and am looking forward to editing and printing some out (a few of my favorites are below). I had some car troubles on Saturday, the day before my return, that ended up putting me in a foul mood, but I let it go, with the help of a few beers and some ranting. I am happy to say that Jiffy Lube is going to foot the bill for the repair, which was necessary because of them. I've never had car troubles on a trip so I guess I was due.

Morning light at Balanced Rock

Sunset in the canyon

Delicate Arch

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Made it to Moab!

Heading to Idaho Falls on Tuesday night, I encountered a mini blizzard, in the dark, in unfamiliar territory. I persevered and made it only to oversleep a bit today.

On the way to Moab from Idaho Falls, I encountered two more mini blizzards (I should note that I love driving in snow, rain, etc...not really), and my first dust storm (which was kinda cool). I met Mindy at the local brewery around 4pm where we indulged in some great brews and dinner. Talking with some locals, we found that it would be near impossible to get a campsite inside the park, so we decided to camp on the edge of town at a nice campground. This works out well for a couple of reasons. First, Badass, the fish that is the purpose of this trip, is able to stay in the campground office where he will not freeze to death (temps to be in mid to upper 30's at night). Secondly, the nightlife and atmosphere in town is amazing and we will be able to get the best of both worlds now.

So...tomorrow, we are off for some hiking and what promises to be some great photos, but I leave you with a picture of the dust storm from I70, and another picture, just to let you know that we are in Utah...

Thursday, April 9, 2009

Bad start, great finish

I've been busy this week. What started out as a bad week, is turning out to be a great one. Having a patient and understanding boyfriend helps, as does having great friends.

Tuesday, I met some friends for a sushi dinner. The night ended with a couple of us going out to the Rhino for drinks, where I ran into a fellow Iowan (how ironic, home is always present in my life). Sometimes I think that I am trying to forget the past, and then, out of nowhere, it somehow sneaks up on me again.

Wednesday, I noticed that Spring was here. On the way to a massage clinic at the University, I saw my first bud emerging. Perhaps it is just a coincidence that since 2002, the first bud of Spring that I have seen has been on April 8th. I kind of thought that it would be later this year but I am very happy to see that Spring has arrived in Missoula.

Today, I had planned on spending a much needed night alone. After completing a custom engagement ring, I was ready for a glass of wine and some quiet time. Alas, I am a glutton for punishment, err, I love to be around people and put off the necessary things in life. I headed to the Old Post for dinner with a friend, and then headed downstairs for a wine tasting...more on that soon.

To fulfill my monthly design project (sorry, I've fallen on the wayside) here is an awesome diamond that I designed a stunning mounting for.

Tuesday, April 7, 2009


Mondays are great...normally. Yesterday was the exception. I did go exploring as I had mentioned I wanted to. Halfway up the trail at Bass Creek, south of Lolo, I received a work related phone call that left me a bit unsettled. At first it seemed to ruin my afternoon. However, I tried to let it go. Unfortunately, I am the kind of person that is easily rattled, and it upset me more and more as the day went on.

However upsetting a day can be, I still found beauty aroun
d every corner. Slipping and sliding up snow covered trails under blue skies, it proved to be a very therapeutic day...

Saturday, April 4, 2009

No distractions...

Due to a glitch with my internet provider, I have been without internet at home since late Wednesday night, and will probably be without it for a few more days.

Normally, I would be a bit annoyed, but I do have limited access at work, which is where I am now, on a break, paying bills and letting you know that I am still here. I will use these next few days and the "extra" time to get my creative juices flowing again. I have been in a creative mood the last couple of days, which were proceeded by a few moody days. Not sure what got me into a funk, but I didn't like it at all. However, after a great nights sleep, I am happy again, and appear to be out of that funk and ready to get busy with artsy stuff.

My plan is to design a pendant for Mindy's birthday present, design a pendant for a contest at work that I am collaborating with a coworker on, and perhaps fabricate a ring. I also want to take some photos outside of Missoula. I think that will be on Monday's agenda.