I discovered Lima Beads a few years ago and immediately became addicted to the fresh pics. I thought it was a very clever idea as was the name Lima Beads, which suggested a garden of bright colors. I was happy to discover also that they had a nice selection of untreated semiprecious gemstone beads. At the time they were the only online store I knew of that allowed you to order 1/2 of a bead string. This helped me since I was beading as a hobby with little time to become a professional jewelry designer. I have been working for New York State for over 10 years doing art and recreation therapy with children and teens. The job is very demanding of my time, but it is what I enjoy doing the most after several career changes over the years. For me it is more of a vocation than a career.
Before this work I had the opportunity to travel to Japan and Argentina several times with my husband, who is also an artist and came to the U.S. to pursue a career in art. He is originally from Japan, so it was a unique experience to stay with his family and experience their traditional way of living without central heating. We also traveled to various temples and hot springs, one of my favorite things in Japan.His friends and family were always very kind and welcoming to me.
I have been practicing many different techniques in jewelry-making, starting with Native American beadweaving techniques. I also learned some basic wire wrapping skills, but have a long way to go. It is challenging for me to string various beads in a combination that I like, so I have spent most of my time experimenting before finishing a piece and still have so many ideas I have not had the time to work out. But for me it is fun and relaxing. I have promised to make bracelets for several friends as a way to motivate me to complete pieces, and most of them are still waiting.
My other interests include plants and animals. I am not at home enough to have a dog, nor would I want one to have to stay in a cramped apartment. I have 3 cats now, one a feral, and all are from a rescue organization I used to volunteer for. I am also feeding a dozen feral cats on the hospital grounds where I work. I am basically an outdoor nature-loving person, who never expected to spend half my life in the middle of NY City.
Another thing I really liked about LB was to be able to see customers completed jewelry pieces in the gallery, which further motivated me to keep improving my skills.I have made a few successful pieces, so hope to share pictures as soon as I can get some decent pictures. Now I have begun to (again) learn Spanish, and have found a great free online resource: Duolingo.com. Many people around the world are learning up to 25 available languages and providing feedback to continue to improve the site. It is fun and motivating for me, easier than taking classes, since you make your own schedule and progress at whatever speed you choose. Also discussions allow everyone to ask questions or provide answers to help each other. They have a point system that helps to motivate me to continue learning on a daily basis.