Search This Blog

Monday, April 29, 2013

Peony Power (Guest Post By Shanda Neighbors)

I have developed a full blown love affair with flowers. Now, it's not to the point where I'm talking to them yet...Well actually, I did speak to one today so cancel that. I said something to the effect of "you have to get better." Hey don't judge. Besides, you'd do the same thing if you were in my shoes. One of my all time favorite flowers (and only for the sake of this post will I admit I have one) is the peony. For those of you who don't know what they look look like, see below:
l.KANSAS(red) - Click Image to Closel.FESTIVA MAXIMA(dbl wht)
Oh, and yes these happen to smell as beautiful as they look. They come in a variety of colors, coral and purple being the most stunning (my opinion). They are reasonably priced, but when you have a project the size of mine, and a limited budget, they are not reasonably priced enough, which brings me back to my story. I was out in the yard today (where else would I be on such a beautiful day) surveying my latest project (I'm landscaping a slope in the front yard). I've planted a row of rose bushes, and thought that something with lush, green leaves would add contrast, and look nice there. That's when I remembered the lone peony I inherited from the previous owner of this property. Unfortunately, it was planted in a shaded location. Peonies are not a shade plant. I also learned that they are finicky about being moved. In attempt to save this plant I actually debated cutting down the tree that was causing the shade. My husband wouldn't go for it. After a year of stalling, and with the plant near death, I was forced to make a decision. Today, and far to late in spring to transplant the poor thing, I gathered the courage, dug it up, and gave it a sunny, new location. I'm not sure if it's gonna make it, but hopeful. I'd love for this story to have a happy ending. I don't even know the color of the flower on this particular peony bush. Only time will tell. I'm hoping it turns out looking like this:

But for now it looks like this:

Pathetic. I know. I've heard that talking to plants help. I'm not saying that I willing to have a full blown conversation, but given the looks of this one,  and despite the "looks" I'll be getting when I do, I'm at least willing to say hi. I'm thinking we'll be be on speaking terms for a while...

Thursday, April 18, 2013

Mariah Carey ft Whitney Houston When You Believe HD

This song makes me want to break bricks with my bare hards and crack a few walnuts under my armpits.  Lol, in other words it is awesome! I am sure you will agree too.  No body does it like my girl Ms Whitney.

Have a beautiful day lovelies!


Sunday, April 14, 2013

It's All About Me

I used to think that to focus on oneself was selfish, arrogant.....egotistical.  That to do so was a not so slow march towards narcissism.  Eventually. 

It took a long tome to get here, but  I no longer think this way.

You see, I have a natural affinity to care for others, some may even call it a gift or talent.  Whatever it is, at the very least it is a nurturing spirit.  I want to heal the broken, take away what is hurting, and above all, help in whatever way I can. Sometimes I can, and sometimes unfortunately I cannot....but man do I try!  Somewhere in the middle of this though, I've learned to put my own emotional well being on the back burner.  Sure, I took care of everything else over the years, work, family etc., except this one area.  

Why?  Because I believed to do otherwise would be selfish.

 I was wrong.

Truth is, even a gift can be like a curse if not managed properly.  

Case in point. For as long as I can remember, anyone with a problem seemed to be drawn to me like a moth to a flame.  And when I say anyone, I do mean that.  It is not unusual at all for me to meet a complete stranger and have them pour out their life to me in a grocery line.  No kidding.  The point is, I love to help hurting people and they love me right back.  Unfortunately as with any thing that is wounded, one must exercise caution. The same is true.  Hurt people, hurt people.

Over the past year I have learned a lot about myself.  I know that we are all instinctually what God created us to be.  I know that I will always be a nurturer at heart but there has to be some changes in my life. After all, if I am upset, frustrated and sad, what help am I to anyone else?  For this reason, it is indeed all about me! 

 I choose to focus on being the positive glass half full gal that I am and take time to nurture myself and the things that are dear to me.  Only then will I be able to give anything back....that is worthwhile.  


Monday, April 8, 2013

The Fashionista Precious Metals Check List

I really hope this post helps someone the way it did me.  Sometime precious metals like gold, silver and platinum, depending on the country that manufactured the piece has markings that may be foreign to you or unfamiliar at the very least.  We all recognize 14kt, 10kt and 18kt but do you know that in other countries the markings can be entirely different?  For instance, 14kt in the United kingdom is often marked 585.  In cases like this, due to lack of knowledge,  lots of people have given away or mistook precious metals for costume jewelry.  Sadly, this happens more often than you think.

When I started selling on Ebay, I had a similar experience that taught me an invaluable lesson.  One of the pieces I sold was a platinum bracelet with the markings 950.  I had no idea it was platinum and sold it as costume jewelry for little or nothing.  Needless to say, I lost that piece and the customer who bought it probably fist pumped when he or she received it.  That is...if they knew what it was. The bracelet was worth at least $550.00  (I am too ashamed to tell you what I sold it for.)  It still hurts today to recall the incident.  And so, please take a minute to look at this chart, it may save you from the same horror......or, you may find that you have precious metals in your collection that you didn't even know you had!

Metal Stamps
Metal stampMinimum percentage of pure metalCommon alloys**
.925 Sterling SilverAlso: 925 Sterling, Sterling Silver*92.5% pure fine silverUsually copper
10kAlso: 16, 417, 10KP*
41.6% pure gold (10 parts out of 24)Usually silver, copper, zinc, and nickel
14kAlso: 583, 585, 14KP*
58.3% pure gold (14 parts out of 24)Usually silver, copper, zinc, and nickel
18kAlso: 750, 18KP*
75% pure gold (18 parts out of 24)Usually silver, copper, nickel, and palladium (for white gold)
22kAlso: 916, 917*
91.6% pure gold (22 parts out of 24)Usually silver and copper
24kAlso: 999*
100% pure gold (24 parts out of 24)None
900 PlatinumAlso: 900 Plat, Plat 900, Pt900, 900Pt*
90% pure platinum (900 parts out of 1,000)Ruthenium, rhodium, palladium, and other platinum group metals
950 PlatinumAlso: PLAT, PT, 950 Plat, Plat 950, Pt950, 950Pt*
95% pure platinum (950 parts out of 1,000)Ruthenium, rhodium, palladium, and other platinum group metals
*Alternate stamp or European hallmark
**May vary depending on desired color, such as white gold or rose gold
Additional Information
    Additional Information
    • The term "karat" (usually abbreviated as "k," "K," or "Kt") refers to the relative purity of gold; pure gold is 24 karats. "Karat" is different from "carat," which is a metric unit of weight for gemstones.
    • In the context of gold jewelry, "plumb" is an old-fashioned term that means that the fineness or purity level of the gold content is precisely what is stamped on the item. The word "Plumb" or the letter P still sometimes follows the metal stamp (e.g., "14k Plumb," "14KP").



Click Here