Friday, November 18, 2011

I was prepared

It has been a busy couple of months.   Let just jump right into the mix.  I had several shows scheduled for October. plus other obligations.   My first show was at the local college, one of my favorite spots.  I was dead on.   I had my news ready, I had fliers.  I had made new earrings and necklaces.   I was on the ball.   I made some new customers and saw so of my returning customers.   I was able to complete at least 20 new pairs of earrings just sitting at the table waiting for customers to come by(I had another show the next day and I wanted to be fresh).  I ended up putting some of the newer earrings on the table.   Sometimes It is a hit or miss.  I sold more earrings and bracelets this time around.  Sometimes I will sell a variety of all three, necklaces, earrings, bracelets.  Today was different.   I knew I had to make more bracelets for the show tomorrow.   Making bracelets takes longer for me to make than necklace and earrings.   Since I have switched over to all wire wrapped bracelets, I have to come up with new and stylish ways to showcase my design.  .  I can make 3 necklaces in an hours, 20 earrings, but maybe one bracelet.   This cuts down my construction time.  I will concentrate more on the bracelets than the other two.  OK, back to the story.  

I enjoy going to school.  It gives my ideas, watching the fashion show, men and women and they seem to enjoy buying and wearing my pieces.   This is and always will be one of my favorite spot to setup.   For those of you who want to try it and live in the Waterloo area. call the Maucker Union at UNI to rent a table.  The flow of traffic and meeting nice people is what attracts me.  Maybe you will get hooked on UNI too.

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Busy, Busy, Busy

I have very so busy since the beginning of October.  I had several shows, trying to get my coupon club started, finishing up my computer class.  Let me update you about what has been going on.  I will start with my first show.  I was a vendor at the Hat & Heels Fashion Show which was scheduled for Saturday October 22. .   I had a wonderful blssed time.  I met some awesome women of God.  They put on a fantastic show.   They also presented a conference headed by Prophetess Ladi-Annissa Spencer.  She is the spiritual head of the Royal Daughters of Zion Priesthood, in connection with The Royal Priesthood Worldwide Ministries. The ministry is located in Lafayette Indiana.  I was not able to attend the conference, but I heard that it was awesome.

These ladies made me feel welcome. I enjoyed the  praise team as they worship God with song and we prayed before the fashion show.  They will be back in town as they plan to make this area a permanent stop on the road to spreading word.   I have to say I am sorry.  I am just getting to write about this show and I will email Prophetess Spencer to let her know I have not forgotten.  You can feel the power coming off of her in waves.  The power of God in her life.   If you would like to get in touch with Prophetess Spencer, you can email her at RoyalDaughterofZion Priesthood or follow her at RPWMinistries.  Their website address is   Now  there was another vendor there and she was part of the Hat and Heels Fashion Show.   She had some amazing hats.    I am sorry to say, I lost her business information( I am losing a lot things these days).  As soon as I can get the information, I will post it.  Here are pictures of her awesome hats.

This beautiful young lady was a  participant in the fashion show.   She actually came to see the show and was picked by the vendor and coordinator to be in the fashion show.  Stylish, elegant and fabulous.  Go on girl and strut your stuff. Hopefully I will have not more problems with my computer and my hectic schedule has lighten up at bit.   Onward and upward.

Sunday, October 16, 2011


It seems like I am always on standby.   I always pack my items as if I am unpacking, if that makes sense to you.  It makes sense to me.  I like to have a fresh look when I attend a new show(I have three coming up very soon). Here is a list of what I go through before I pack up for the day from doing a show.

1. I wipe down mirrors,( I keep wipes in my travel bag)
2. My travel bag consist of wipes. cards, fliers, scissors, bags, stamps, ink pad, pens, note pad and any other marketing or advertising items I might need.
3. I straighten out my bags, counting to see if I need to replenish my supply, as well as my order books, business cards, fliers, boxes, tissue papers, etc.......
4. Any repairs(customers/or mine) go into a special bag which I will take out with me into the house(I always like to wind down first before unpacking my inventory.  My winding down might take a couple of days, depending on the next show date). 
5.I will usually set up the inventory the way I want to unpack for the next show.
6. I check my notes(I have a sign up sheet for customers so that I can get in touch with them at a later date).
7. Tuck away my cash box(I do this a varies stages of my cleanup, depending on where I am)
8. Clean up my operating area. 
9. Check with the coordinator to see if there are any question, surveys that I need to fill out.  I will usually offer the coordinator a gift.  The package will include the gift,  my card and any additional contact information.

Once everything is settled,  I depart for bigger and brighter days.   Preparing this way, helps me with the next show and so on and so on.   If I make additional items, then I can easily incorporate those pieces into the mix without disturbing the my original setup.

During the course of the show, I will continually work on the jewelry, cards, ideas in between taking care of customers.   Because of my tight schedule,  I find it easier to leave some things to work on while I am at the show.  Here is something I worked on while at my last show.  Here are some of the fliers that I passed out.   A friend of mine had sent me one my fliers(I teach a basic computer class).  She had made the fliers on what I call a 4 square.  4 fliers(copies) on one page.  All I had to do was replace the information with my business information, print out one.

I made on copy and took the original to Staples.   I picked 24lb paper and choose 4 different colors, pink, blue, lavender and coral.  Next time I will choose a heavier paper say 65lbs.

I used decorative scissors to make the edges 

Here is the results.  I requested 20 copies which yielded 80 fliers.  The copies were only 11 for the 24 lb paper.   The price goes up with the selection of heavier paper.  I think they turned out pretty nice.   

Most of the time I will leave some items to fix or transform at the show.   It keep me busy( I also will make adjustments on the spot.  I keep my tools with me at all times) and most of the time people will come over to see what you are doing and they take a look at your table. 

Preparations can mean different things to different people.   Having organization and preparation is the key, at least for me, it spells a successful show, before and after.   

Saturday, October 1, 2011

I love doing shows

I finished my two shows for September I love doing shows.   It gives me chance to meet and greet. I have a ball.   I  come alive when I do shows.   I get to look into the customers eyes and make that connection.  It is a rush.  Crafting and creating is a two part process. You make the piece is the first part. The customer buying the piece is the second part. The gravy is in between. This is the part where you can make a customer, a repeat customer.  You also get free advice about your pieces, what colors are out there and what is not selling.   Some vendors do not like to have their work criticized.   How would you know what pieces to make if you do not get some feedback.   Step up to plate, take the hit, if any, and move on.  Use it as a tool for your next show.   Even if they have not brought anything, their eye might be the eyes you need to see your collection in a whole new light.

My first show was at the local college.   For a small fee you can set up a table in the student union and sell your wares.   I see college students, teachers, staff.   They all stop by and this is not my first time being there. Some new and old faces.    Though my table is small, I make the most of it.    I love talking to the young women and sometimes men as they discuss their views.  They are on their way to new and exciting life after graduating  . They give me insight into what our future will look like.  They know what they want, how to get and have no fear to change the world.  Ah to be young again.   These young women tend to like my earrings and bracelets.   I have been making a lot of wire wrapped bracelets. They are quicker and easier to make.    I tend to get more mileage out of them.  They fit all sizes.   I did not sell as many necklaces as I have in the past. Maybe next time.  I will be at the college again on October 21 from 8:00 - 3:00. I like to the college scene. Nice people, nice crowd.  Below is how I set my table up for this venue.

As you can see, I took the pics from the wrong side of the table(just too tire to get up).  Despite my banner day,  the setup just would not act right. I kept losing beads and the stands would not stand right.  I put the racks away.  Shame, they usually give me more table space to work my magic.   It was a mess.  But  I have to fail to succeed.  Despite my mishaps I sold some pieces.   Go figure.

My second show was at the African American Women's Conference.   I had a bigger table(as a matter of fact, I was able to spread out and due to another vendor  not coming).   At this event I met wonderful women of all walks of life, interest.   It was a pleasure for me to meet and greet.  I was given an opportunity to view not only stylish women, but a gathering of smart successful, independent women, strong and fierce.  And boy did they put on a fashion show..   I saw purses, shoes, clothes, hair styles and yes jewelry pieces.   Almost put my stuff to same.  You noticed I said almost.   I use to be more critical of my own pieces.  Now I let the matter be.  I have my own style and hope that the women will find my style to suit their taste.  By the continuous stream of women and sales during the breaks, I think I suited them just fine.   Though I was able to spread out , I still did not use nay of my stands or display any of my cards.  Alas, maybe next time.    What I was able to do was to set my earrings on a new card system, which make it easier for display and easier to pack up.  I wish I was able to get some pics of these wonderful women.   They only had so little time between each  seminar.  I glad that they decided to spend that time with me at my table.  Thank you ladies.  Here is how my table looked at the event.

 This was before I had the extra table.   I also had other pieces waiting in wings for replacement when one piece would sell.    Now that I look at the table with fresh eyes, I did very well.   Very well.

Wednesday, August 31, 2011

New Shows

Hello everybody.  I am very excited.  I will be vending at two shows this month, with the possiblity of another show.  I will keep you posted.  To find out about all three shows,  click on the link Shows and Events, for additional information.   Bring friends, family and come and shop till you drop.   I have been making some pieces and would like to test run a few pieces before I enter them into my ETSY Store.  I hope to see you there!

Monday, August 8, 2011


Today, I spent the entire(well until about 2:30 pm) in the bed.  I had a headache when I woke up this moring and it would not go away.  I have ICP and sometimes the pressure in my head is to much to take.  I took my medication and laid back down hoping the headache would go away.  I took a shower hoping to wash the pain away.  No dice.  This was the day of getting some work done.   I did not have to babysit and I had the whole day free.   I am not the person who waste the day, hour, minute, or second.   I will be doing something to improve my business and mind, body and soul.  I am the ultimate multi-tasker.   Most of the time I can usually work throught my pain, but today was different. 

Now I feel gulity about a lot things, but I felt extra gulity about wasting this day.  I should be on the computer, answering emails, taking pic of my jewelry, making jewelry and cards, getting my computer class together.   Instead I watched old movies, that I have seen a thousand times.  Occassionlly my mind would wander  and I would raise my head off the pillow and say, Ok, Jet, get going.  You have an empire to complete.   As soon as that thought would enter my head, another one followed," Lay back down, enjoy life, liberty and the pursuit of a good hamburger".  You can guess which one prevailed.    I need new pillows to get really comfortable.

Here's the thing,  My stock did not take a nose dive.  Emails piled up, but they always pile up.   The beads did not lose their luster or come apart in my hands,and the world was safe in it own little bubble.  With me in it.   Am I behind on some of my work, yes, I always a little behind.   Will my buisness go under from day of no attention, no.   Even I know that I am not the be all to be all.   Well I am but don't tell any body.

Sometime, you need to recharge and let some thing go.  I don't mean take a year long leave and orders that need to go out. But one day here and there will not turn your world upside down.  As much as we love our craft, we love ourselves even more.  Yes my craft is a part of me.  It's in my blood, I breathe my business; like air.  But I also have a family, friends, my spiritual side.  I like to volunteer.  I teach a basic computer class.  One day I would like to have a shop where anyone can come learn and create.    A very wise women (my mother) once told me to take care of myself, so that I can take care of everything else.   Good advice.  My mother is a giver and takes care of everybody else's needs before her own.   I love her.

Here's the thing.  As most artist know, our craft becomes us.  We go together like white on rice.   We live and breathe our business,craft, creation.   We really cannot survive without each other.  But right now I am not talking about survival, I talking about living.  It is done one day at a time.   Today was my day.   Ok, so you caught me.  Here I am answering emails, and blogging.   But technically, this is night.  I did state that I stayed in bed all day, so...................  I never said I was perfect.  Ok I am.

Friday, August 5, 2011

All that Glitters

Recently I have made some new friends.  They all share a passion for creating beautiful works of art through jewelry that they make.  You can find my new friends under the link on my page titled All That Glitters.  I will be adding more talented artist in the near future.  Check back often to see the lastest and greatest.  Happy Beading.

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

New Jewelry Making Class

Sign up today.  New classes starting August 13.   Openings still available.  Click link

Monday, July 11, 2011

New Jo-Ann's

There is a new store in town.  It is called Jo-Ann Fabrics.    Well I guess it is not new, but it does have a new location.  They sent out flyer's for the grand opening this pass weekend. I was unable to attend the 2 day event(I know, I am still crying too), but I did make it this pass Sunday.   The store looks impressive, compared to its other location. It is bigger, brighter and full of all the fun things we jewelry, crafts, artist, seamstress, decorators need to complete a project.   I made a bee line to the beads section.  I was in awe.  The inventory has taken on a life of its own.  Beads galore.  And not just any beads, but new beads(and some better prices I might add), findings, glue, books.  I found earring kits in Pink, Blue, Black, Orange, Red,.  Beading kits to embellish your clothes, purse, head bands, shoes.  New clasps,claws, hooks and wires.   The beading wire was plentiful.  I finally found some large kidney hooks(shout out the buyer).  The  sales were fantastic.   I was in beading heaven.  My mind was racing.  Everywhere I turned it was something new. Instead of the one sheet instructions, they have little booklets with instruction on how to use the findings in several different ways.  I liked that, I really liked that. I would love to meet the buyer.  She, He or them did an excellent job. I commend them.  If this is the trend that beading is going into, then, let me ride till the cows home(I never have understood that expression.  I did not know cows ran away.  What is worse is that I am using the expression).  I felt like I kid in a candy store.  I admit, I do not go out and buy the new craze, but I think I am going to start very soon.

Now my one little hiccup with the new Jo-Ann's is that the style is similar to Micheal's craft store.  The look and fill of the store reminded me of being in a Michael's store. Down to the layout. HMMMMMMMMMM.  Other than that, it has what I need to satisfy my craving for beads, and paper crafts and any other creating I want to do. 

Once I stopped drooling; and going Oh, Ah, I picked out two things(they were on sale for a $1.20 each) and hurried to the cashier before the temptation to buy some more reared its ugly head.  Plus, all I had was $5.00. My in tended,  big spending spree would have been halted due to the lack of funds.   Before leaving the store, I took one more walk around the bead section.  As my hands sailed across the strands of beads, my mind begin to wonder and I was lost in my own little beading world.  In that moment I saw, necklaces, earrings, bracelets, rings, and other beads to use to accessorize and made by of course me.   If the funds would have cooperated, I would have brought almost every bead and finding in the store.  I don't know how long I stood there,in my haze.  Good thing someone else came into the aisle and I came to myself.   No matter what, I am always going to find a new bead or finding that will excited me.  We will be always improving and restyling.  

I will probably go back to Jo-Ann's and check out some of the other wonderful creations that they have.  Jo-Ann, thanks for reawakening my creativity spirit once again, if only for an hour or so.

Sunday, May 29, 2011

New Show

I have signed on the be a vendor at the Martin Luther King Jr. Juneteeth Celebration.   For additional information, click on Shows and Events.  

Saturday, May 28, 2011

It's Getting Hot In Here

Here is the time to get moving.  Winter is dead and the summer time is hear to stay( at least until the fall).  This is the time for summer festivals, events and shows.  I love doing outside shows.  The crowds are large and you get to meet other vendors from other states and other venues.  My absolute favorite is the large shows where there are at least 200 vendors.  The more the merrier I say.   Not only do you get to check out the competition, but you get to exchange ideas, information, and chit chat.   I have learned more from other vendors at these large shows than poking around on my own.  I love the way they set the stage for whatever merchandise they are selling.  Every vendor is milling around checking out prices, techniques and displays.   We are all there for one reason.  To sell, sell, and sell some more.   Meeting people, and other vendors is the bonus.

I just adore the outdoor shows. People are in a better mood, even it is real hot, they will still come by the table and chat, maybe buy a few things, maybe not.  The sun is shining and a hopefully slight breeze.  It makes for a perfect day.
Summer shows brings all walks of life. People will come out of their offices(this is street fairs) for lunch, stroll by, look, buy or browse.   Most shows are on the weekends.  The crowds of people will stop by your table and oh and ah over what you have slaved over for the past few months. It is almost like a picnic. You bring out the lawn chairs, table, tent, food, drink, umbrella and sit and wait. And the night shows are even better. Turn your light on, putting a shine on your items as you sail into the last hours of what has turned out to be a fun, relaxed and hopefully a profitable day.  I try to cram as many shows in as possible in the summer.

The outdoors shows also bring about its headaches as well.  Wind, water and the sun, just to name a few.   For me it is the wind and sun.  The wind, if any there is any,  will blow my things all over the place.  The sun, if I don't invest in a tent this year. will discolor my jewelry. 

I have come up  with ways to combat the wind.  I have made earring boards, used a fire place screen, put them in decorative bowls on the table.  You name I have done it all.   One of my best effort was to make earring holders with pieces of material and embroidery hoops.  But even those kept flying away.  I used a peg board to hold the hoops in place with S hooks, but the board kept falling down.   I use to own a tall black carrying case which was lined with black felt and cushioned.   I lost the case during a move and have not been able to find one again.  It was light weight and I could carry it everywhere.   At one show, I pinned my earring to the skirt I was using on the table.  It worked for a little while, until the skirt fell from the table and took all my other merchandise with it.  The mishaps of a vendor.  

The only way to block the sun is to use a tent.  I have brought the EZ up, the one without the flaps(it cost more and sometimes there is not enough to around the tent.).  I will then purchase 2 blue tarp and using shower hooks, make my own flaps.  To secure them to the legs of the tent, I will punch holes and tie with a rope.   A lot of my materials can be found at Dollar General and the dollar store.   I will also position my merchandise toward the back of the tent.

I prefer grass shows than concrete or ground.  It is easy on the feet, no dust to speak of and if you pick the right patch of grass, you have even ground to set up your tent. 

Other annoyances  are the blood suckers, and the army.  Some people prefer to call them ants, mosquitoes and  flies.  I call them a menace to society.   Not only will they bite you but they will nibble on your customer, driving them into the arms of another vendor.   I will usually not eat around my tent and anything sweet is washed away with water.  I always bring plenty of water with me.   To help wipe off dust, scare away some ants and to wash away the dust from your feet.   Who wants to buy something from someone with dusty feet?

Who can argue about summer shows?  They bring their own magic and mystery.  I seem to sell differently in the summer than in the winter.  Maybe it is because I sell jewelry and this a chance to show your individual style and grace with the items I make.   What ever the reason, I hope they continue forever and ever.  So come and enjoy.  You might see me there.

****** My hometown is Chi-town.   I have just posted a list of some of the Summer Events in Chicago  If you are in the are, you might want to take a look. ********

******To check out what shows I will be doing, click on the link for Shows and Events**********

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Bead, Beads, and More Beads

I love going to different bead shops.  The rows of beads, colors, textures(glass, wood, ceramic, fibers, plastic), it doesn't matter.  I love them all.  Even the smell of new beads.  OK, I know beads do not have a smell, but a girl can fantasize can't she.   Buying new beads always gets the juices flowing, especially if I have a creative block.  I am always looking for new and interesting ways to create new jewelry, with different beads and components. 

I received an email from EHOW.  The article caught my attention right away.  It was titled - How to Make Bahamian Sand BeadsAfter I read through the article, I thought I would share this information.  

When people want to make jewelry, but there are no beads in sight, they figure out how to make their own beads with the materials available to them. In the Bahamas, if you want to make some beautiful pieces of jewelry, all you have to do is go to the beach and scoop up some sand! If you don't have a beach nearby, you can still make these beads at home with a few inexpensive materials found at any craft store.


Things you'll need:
Screen or cheesecloth
Glass bowl
Vegetable oil
Craft glue
Acrylic paint
Sewing needle
Clear acrylic glaze

1. Collect 2 cups of sand from the beach, or buy some sand from a craft store. Make sure the sand is fine. Sift it through a screen or cheesecloth and rinse it off very well to clean it. Set it out in the sun and let it dry completely.

2. Pour the sand you prepared and two cups of papier-mâché into a clean glass bowl. Rub a coating of vegetable oil on your hands and add some glue. Knead the mixture into the consistency of bread dough. Add the desired amount of acrylic paint to make colored beads. Rinse your hands off and apply more vegetable oil if your hands get too sticky as you work.

3. Roll the sandy dough into the desired sizes and shapes for your beads. Let them air dry over night.

4. Pierce each bead through the middle with a large sewing needle after they've dried over night, or have just dried enough so that you don't crush them between your fingers. Since the beads are so thick, letting them sit for up to eight hours will not dry them completely. Don't let them dry all the way or you won't be able to poke a hole through them.

5. Brush a coat of clear acrylic glaze on each bead to make them glossy (if you want) and let them dry. Now you can make jewelry with your homemade sand beads.

I have not tried this yet.  I am waiting for school to end.  Once I make the beads, I will post the beads, then I will create a piece.  Wish me luck,

Friday, May 6, 2011

Time is slipping away

I love what I do.   I love making jewelry, creating cards, recycling, re-purposing, reusing,  multitasking.  I wish I could spend the whole day, just creating(I also like to sell my creations).   I am always trying to do several things with one motion.  I guess that is why I have five blogs.  Yes five blogs, one website.  It sounds crazy.  It might just be.  A friend(Her Blog is Peaceful Reader) of mine mentioned to me that I had not blogged in over 4 weeks.  It did not seem that long, only because I am always making adjustments to the blog without posting.  I do have a tendency to get lost in exploration of the world wide web and making improvements to my many blogs.   All of my blogs now have a great  foundation and all I have to do is add the decorative touch.  The Internet is always changing and I like to keep up with the latest and greatest.  Whether I use it is another story.

Now my reasons for not bogging as I should, are simple.   There is not enough time in the day to do all I things I want to do.  With all that I have to do, I wonder why I am doing what I am doing.   Let me give you an example.
1. Connection with my spiritual life, God and Jesus
Christ(this is a must)
2. Writing., posting, decorating  the five blogs/web site
3. Making jewelry and paper crafts, and any other projects that I tackle
4. Marketing and Advertising for my jewelry and paper craft business
5. Taking pictures, uploading and writing captions
6. Recycling, Re purposing and reusing to save money
7. Reading and seek new ideas, functions, items, etc to promote my business
8. Taking care of my home, family and friends
9. My personal time, time to me and be free
10. I manage the bills, make all the phone class, etc.
11. Preparation for teaching two classes (basic computer class and basic jewelry making/repair and redo.

And on top of that, I am applying to go back to school for web design.  Time has a habit of slipping away. Having to do all of this and work a full time job is insanity.  At least that is what my therapist said.  I feel my days getting shorter and shorter.  As I continue to pile on more things, projects, causes on to my day, it has become apparent to everybody but myself, that I might have a full plate.  I feel better when I am doing something.  It is even hard for me to watch a movie now.  I will be writing or making jewelry while I am in bed.  I feel like it is not productive just to sit.  Activity is the name of this game, my game.

The amount of activity is your choice.  Whatever you can stand.  My choice is to have as much on my plate, maybe having it run over sometimes.  I will have plenty of time to rest.  At least I think so.  I will check to see how much time I have.

Sunday, March 13, 2011

Recycle, Redo, Repurpose

I like all kinds of jewelry.  I love wearing it, making it and more times than not, I will redo a piece to make it my own.  I happen to pick up a box of items and in this box was some bracelets.  I am always happy to see jewelry or things I make into some accessory.  Two were wood and the others were plastic.  They were pretty banged up, but the creative person in me came out and tried my hand at redo the bracelets.  I have remade, recycled and re-purposed jewelry before, but it has strictly been with earrings, necklaces, and beaded bracelets.  I have made jewelry out of belts, Cd's, string, rubber and whatever I could get my hands on.  I kinda of miss that.  For so long I have been starting from scratch, making pieces.   I decided to get back into the swing of things,  This is an excellent time, with the country going green and people are looking for a way to save money.  

From time to time I will devote myself to redoing a piece for either restyle or a full out redo. You can look at one of my other project with a light green purse that I restyled.  I think it turned out very nice.  

So here is to dipping my toe back into the world of redo, recreate and recycle.  Take a look.

This first bracelet was very simple.  It had a few scratches on, but I could not buff them out or paint over.  So I just added more scratches.  I like unusual things.  The more to the left, the better I like it.  I have gotten a lot of compliments on this bracelet.

The next bracelet was this ugly shade of blue, with white swirls.   I painted the bracelet and added stickers.  I varnished over the entire bracelet so that the stickers would stay and put a shine on the bracelet. 

Here is one of my favorites.  I just deepened the color(burnt orange) and I had already punched(I brought the punch at the dollar store) out this swirls.   I just glue on the swirls and waited for them to dry and varnished the entire bracelet. 

I continued my sticker theme with the next two bracelets.  Just to keep the stickers in place, glue them, let them dry and varnish to keep the stickers in place.  This also places a high gloss to the object.

I believe 99% of any object can be reuse again.  All it take is time, creativity and a little love.  

Saturday, February 5, 2011

Up Coming Shows/Fairs and Festivals

March 3, 2011Thursday, 5:30-7:30pm
Bring the entire family
to experience the impressive
cultural diversity of the Cedar Valley!

Waterloo All Schools Art Festival
Over 1000 Student works of art

Cultural Performances
From student and local artists

International Food Samplings

Multicultural Crafts
and art activities

International Fashion Show
Free Admission 
Family Event Focuses on Cultural Diversity of Cedar Valley

The community is invited to the 4th annual CultureFest event on Thursday, March 3 from 5:30-7:30pm, at the Waterloo Center for the Arts. This free, family event will showcase the impressive cultural diversity within the Cedar Valley, with special performances taking place throughout the evening.

The community is invited to the 4th annual CultureFest event on Thursday, March 3 from 5:30-7:30pm, at the Waterloo Center for the Arts. This free, family event will showcase the impressive cultural diversity within the Cedar Valley, with special performances taking place throughout the evening.

*This Show has been cut down to one day, March 5*
Payne AME Church/Women s Conference 2011

MARCH 4-5, 2011


MARCH 4, 6:00 PM                                                            MARCH 5, 8:00 AM – 3:00 PM
DINNER & CELEBRATION                                              MESSAGES FOR SPIRITUAL GROWTH
TICKETS:  $25                                                                  COST:  $35
*BOTH DAYS:  $50*




Rev. Theresa A. Dear received her Bachelor of Arts in Organizational Development and her Master of Science in Industrial Relations from Loyola University, Chicago.

Rev. Dear is an Itinerate Elder in the African Methodist Episcopal (AME) Church. She serves at DuPage AME Church where she leads community expansion initiatives and serves on the board of REACH, a non-profit empowerment organization.

Rev. Dear is a consistently visible leader in the NAACP. She was confirmed and sworn into office as a member of the National Board of Directors, in February 2005. She was unanimously re-elected in 2008. For her outstanding contributions and leadership, Rev. Dear has been recognized by several organizations.

Rev. Dear has published two books.  Inconceivable Seasons:  Lessons of Faith and Favor is a powerful book of hope, inspiration, challenge and affirmation. It allows us to see ourselves and God in each woman.  Inadequate, Unprepared But Ready is for people with unmet goals, unrealized dreams but who remain hopeful. 

For more information, visit her websites at www.already or

Saturday, January 1, 2011

Creativity and Love

Well, it's brand new year.  2011 and I have made it intact, still standing.  I just spent the last two weeks getting my pages, blogs, images, words together and I still have a long way to go.   Plus using a 10 year old computer does not help, but that is another story.  I have been organizing, deleting, making folders, downloading, uploading.  It feels like I still have not scratched the surface.  Once I get the framework up, then all I have to do is to fill in the holes. Ah, so many holes.  While I was working my way through all of my files, I came across some pic's I took of my mother's paper plates.  My mother is a very talented artist.  She can sing, write, draw, play the piano, cook and stomp with the best of them.  She handed down her creativity to my son and some of her other children and grandchildren.  She did give me a little(I will have to speak to hear about that), but what she can do with a pencil and some color will blow your mind.  I remember she use to make these holiday candles out of paper.  She would write your first name cut that out, and that would be the candle.  She would have a base and a flame at the top, all from paper.  She is something else.  Now  her health problems have prevented her from doing a lot of what she was use to do.   On one of my visits back home, she showed her paper plates. Each one unique in its own fashion. I still marvel at how she is able to create art just on paper plates. I may be bias(OK I am), but I happen to think she is one the true talents. She has asked to help her get her ideas out there, but I really do not have a clue how to help her. I know it would take travel, money and she can't travel and I don't have the money. Maybe I will give this Internet thing a try.   So I brought the plates back home with me and took pic's. That has been a while, I am ashamed to admit.  It has been a while for me to write in this blog.   But today, my thoughts are on finishing the job with, creativity and love.   I love my mother with all my heart. Through her creativity she has shown me wonder, awe, beautiful works. In everything that she does, it is wrapped up in love.   Let me get started in showing some of that back to her. Take a look.

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