Wednesday, February 09, 2011

Gem Mall...

Today the students headed out to the 22nd Street Antique Mall. I hung back at the Atomic Ranch and prepared lunch. I made an orzo pasta salad with mushrooms, cherry tomatoes, garlic, and lots of fresh herbs. I also made little baguette slices topped with walnuts, honey and brie. For dessert, I whipped up some banana bread.

Baba and Jeannette surprised me with little presents! I am so lucky. Everyone has been so generous to me. Holly gave me a bowling ball bag and a wooden owl sculpture. Today Baba gave me a little milk glass hobnail bowl and Jeannette gave me a beautiful ceramic owl that feels silky smooth. I am told that it was burnished with a stone until it feels as smooth as silk. I love all my gifts!

After lunch, part of the group headed out to the Gem Mall. It was my second trip there this year, so I had a better mental map of places to stop and registration procedures. This didn't prevent us from stopping at nearly every booth to marvel at all the piles of beads and treasures! The above picture is of some Czech glass from Raven's Journey. They make some of my favorite. I always love the bright saturated colors and the luminous quality their glass has.

Of course, I am kicking myself for passing up the $7 strands of rough black tourmaline and the $12 strand of beautiful, chunky, branches of coral. I am also sad that I probably won't make it back to the Howard Johnson to pick up some of the raven head beads that Jeannette scored.

It's funny how by the end of the day, Dawn and I were in sync with our tastes. On more than one occasion, both of us reached for the same strand of rutilated quartz or produced similarly cut melon-shaped beads. Shopping with Baba, I found I gravitated towards larger, chunkier beads. Walking with Holly, I felt myself considering beads that I normally wouldn't even think twice about. She definitely has a different aesthetic and eye for things and I found some interesting strands that I might not have found without her.

Walking the Gem Mall was a lot of fun... but by the end of it, I must admit that my eyes started to cross a little with seeing so many beads!

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