Wednesday, April 25, 2007

My mom, the artist

I'm still reeling from last night's Kenny Loggins performance. It was a-freakin-mazing. And he fell in love with my cousin, so that was just the cherry on top. The cherry on top of that cherry was hanging out with Kenny's guitarist, Gene, and drummer, Chris, who also drums for Pat freakin Benetar and perhaps, just maybe, he'll get to putting us on the list when she comes to town in July. Love is a gol'darn battlefield!

(Oh, and we taught Gene and Chris two Texisms: "muggin' down" and "tumped over." Don't know what those mean? Move to Texas and you'll soon find out.)

Despite all of the crazy goodness last night, this morning I'm draggin' like a catfish at the bottom of Lake Lavon. So imagine my delight when I got this in my inbox this morning:

That is not a photograph. It's a drawing my mom did recently of her cat, Katy. Isn't it wonderful? My mom's been taking a drawing class at Richland (ain't retirement great?) and this is her latest triumph. Here's another particular favorite of mine that she did in pastels:

Who new all of us kin were so darn artistically inclined?

And did I mention Kenny Loggins *hearts* my cousin?

Thursday, April 19, 2007

OCA Studio Tour Nerves

Surprisingly, my nerves have been rather calm this week considering the fact that I will soon have complete strangers tromping up my driveway, onto my deck, and into my sunroom to (let's hope) purchase tons and tons of Tefi jewelry.

Being the anal shebang! that I am, I created a calendar of "To Do" items for this week, and so far I am on track. Tonite I will finish passing out invites and brochures to my neighbors, and I will get all of my jewelry out on the tables and lookin' purty. I took some pics just for you.

This is where I will hang the majority of my lesser-priced Pottery Shard pieces, as well as display some CLEARANCE items in an attempt to reduce my bulging inventory (tilt head to side):

Here's one of the three main display tables plus the old sewing table I found at a thrift store. I bought and stained the wooden top myself and have yet to screw it on so it just sliiiiides around. Another unfinished project is that red and blue carry-tote-thingy on the sewing table. It displays my Escapulario collection - some pieces are hanging from the handle and some are lying in a bed of uncooked rice. Rice makes an excellent display element! (I will have a tutorial blog entry once I get around to decoupaging and sealing the tote.)

This here is a little table that normally houses my indoor plants in the sunroom. Right now it's exploding with trendy chandelier earrings!

This is the center table - yes that's my dining room table, and yes I carried it all by myselfs into the sunroom. Kung Fu has made me one strong mutha! We will leave the sofa in the room for the time being and have the telly tuned to some background muzak.

Okay, do the head tilty thing one last time to see the pretty-in-pink table that will house Tefi's signature Juicy Fruit pieces. Just to the right of this table is the large step leading into the kitchen and the rest of the house. The Hukills let me borrow a four-panel screen that will go up right there to keep the lookey-loos from roaming around the pad.

Now why aren't the hyper links working? you may ask. Good question. I'm about to take my site off line to keep customers from double-buying pieces that I will have for sale at my studio this weekend. Want to buy a Tefi piece now because you can't come to the Studio Tour? No problem. Just email me. God, I love you.

Tuesday, April 17, 2007

Price Calculator - so cool!

I have found one of the coolest resources out there. It makes my compulsive, crazy organization-oriented brain jump for joy. I had a little trouble with it at first, but once I figured out what the deal-io was, it has been a major help for me in pricing my pieces.

One major thing I learned was that I was pricing most things way too low, and some things way too high. Whoops. Now, instead of using the basic pricing formula I was using before, I am using this to reprice all of my pieces.

My plans are to keep web prices around wholesale levels, and show prices around retail levels. This will help me compensate for all of the time, energy, and work it takes for me to travel to show locations, set up my displays, and sell for hours at a time. Web sales, of course, have very little overhead, and shipping costs cover most of the work and supplies it takes to mail out my goods. So, I'll keep the web prices low in the interest of sticking to Tefi's mission:

The mission of Tefi Designs is to create original handmade jewelry that is beautiful, unique, and above all - affordable.

Here's a snapshot of what the calculator (designed by Eni Oken) looks like:

And here's the link:


Monday, April 16, 2007


This is from a bulletin I posted this afternoon on Myspace.

I'm keeping track of the breaking news on regarding the massacre at Virginia Tech this morning. So far, 32 (unconfirmed) people are dead, including the gunman, person unknown.

There are reports of students jumping out of classroom windows in a panic to get away from the gunfire. Some students were killed as they sat in classrooms, and some were killed in several buildings, including a large dorm.

So far, this is the worst school shooting. Before that, the record went to Columbine in 1999 and UT Austin (my alma mater) in 1966.

I'm hardly capable of understanding what happened, and it's hard for me to type this. I hope what I reported is accurate.

I'm an atheist and would never proselytize, but I do ask that you keep the students, faculty, and their families in your thoughts, etc.

Read about it here:

The Way the Cookie Crumbles

I've decided that if the world ended today and I could only have two thing to eat for the rest of my life, it would be coffee with half-n-half and an endless bowl of guacamole. That led me to think of my guacamole recipe (see archives) and take note of my rumbling stomach. She's been talking on overtime ever since I finished off a large guacamole salad with 3 flour tortillas last night for dinner. My stomach bitched so much it kept Oliver on guard til after midnight. Perhaps I should rethink my apocalyptic fare after all.

So this morning as I'm shushing my tummy, I get on the elevator and right next to me is the star of the following blog post. I nearly wet my pants. But he didn't seem to remember me, or at least had the wherewithall to act like a grown-up. We exchanged pleasantries, remarked on the remodelling of the lobby, and bid each other fare thee well when I came to stop. What a day this promises to be.

POSTED: April 2, 2007 (on my old Myspace blog)

I had one of those Huh? moments today.

Walking through the lobby after lunch up to my office, I was in a daydream. I think I was humming to myself and wondering why I ate that whole Chipotle veggie fajita bowl and is it possible to eat too much guacamole? I was sort of pissy, as I usually am at the end of my lunch hour, when a man in the lobby looked at me. Whatevs, I kept my head up and kept toward the elevator. Then he turned away and then turned back around and looked right at me again. But like for several seconds, so it was creepy. There was no one else in the lobby! So without thinking, I frowned, looked right at him, and snapped, "What?!"

He sort of started and looked surprised. He turned and walked away, through the first set of elevators and onto the other side of the lobby, out of sight. I sort of laughed to myself as I thought, "What, am I eight years old?"

I must have been in a state. Sometimes I just say things without wondering first, "Hmm, is this socially acceptable?" And most times I just don't give a damn. People shouldn't stare; it's rude. So yeah, you wanna look at me you looky-loo? Then I'm gonna ask you what's up. Then I'm going to laugh to myself all the way up to my office and then I'm going to sit myself down at my desk and work some more on these damn HUD applications, then I'm going to open my Secret Stash and eat two Cadbury creme eggs and then I'm going to blog about the whole damn thing and laugh all over again.

Then I'll eat one more Cadbury creme egg and slip into another daydream of Chipotle and mounds and mounds of fresh, green guacamole.

Wednesday, April 11, 2007

DIY Health Care

When I'm in my "lady way" and I've got the cramps like nobody's business, I find the only remedy is coffee, chocolate, getting ticked off at random things, and kung fu.

So far, I've had 3 cups of coffee, I'm sucking on a Daim chocolate, I am mad at my stapler, and I have kung fu training tonite. I'm on the road to recovery.

Other rememdies: heating pad, Midol, venting, my boyfriend calling me for no reason, and making jewelry. Right now I am inspired to create a piece called Boomshine, in homage to my new favorite techno pasttime. I'll post a pic soon as I make it!


In the wake of this Rutgers/Imus hullaballoo, I wanted to see what all the fuss was about. For those of you who haven't crawled out from under your rock lately (sometimes it's just better to stay buried!), I'm talking about shock jock Don "not funny anymore" Imus' comment about the Rutgers women's basketball team being a bunch of "nappyheaded hoes." I mean, to me the most offensive part is that it's simply not funny. If you're going to insult a group of people, at least be funny about it. So I did a Google images search to see what these nappyheads looked like. First off, let me say that I think the term "nappyhead" should be positive. There have been many mornings when I wake up and think, yeah, I really dig my nap. If I were a black woman, I'd have a big ol' fro, Foxy Brown style. The bigger, the better. But Imus meant it in a mean, schoolyard bully way, and that's just not cool. When I typed in "Rutgers basketball" into the images search, I found this:

How cool is that? Here's what the web site says about the women in this photo:

"Women's basketball became a popular sport for high school girls in the early twentieth century. These Ridgewood High School girls are dressed in the middie blouses, knee-length bloomers, and dark stockings that were considered appropriate athletic attire. Holding the basketball is Elizabeth Brackett, team captain, who became a doctor with a practice in Nutley."

We learn something new every day. Oh, and Imus should be fired.

Tuesday, April 10, 2007

Polka Dots: Techno DIY

This morning in my inbox Daily Candy left me nice little surprise. It's a Flash game called Boomshine and it's super simple. Here, I'll let the creator explain it to ya: "Boomshine is an addictive Flash casual game. Click the screen to start a chain reaction and try to explode as many dots as needed to pass a level. The game contains 12 levels ranging from the easy to the hard (only 3.97% of games pass level 12). Over 3 million games have been played by over 100,000 different players." Apparently, the Georgia Tech student and his girlfriend created this game in one night. Pretty cool, considering I don't even know why I've wasted 15 minutes trying to pass level 12. I got as close as 54 out of 55 stinkin' dots. Aesthetically I love the game because it reminds me of all those groovy 60s polka dot prints - dresses, mini-skirts, sofas, lava lamps. Give it try. I think you'll find it as fun as I do:

Monday, April 9, 2007

Tefi's Tasty Guacamole

Now, this is probably going to be the simplest guacamole recipe you'll ever see, but let me tell you - every time I serve this I get nothing but compliments. Brace yourself. It's going to be a smooooooth ride!

6 medium avocados
4 cloves garlic
1/2 white onion
1 small tomato
2 sprigs cilantro (optional)
1 small lime
salt and pepper

1. Cut open avocados and scoop out the good stuff into a medium serving bowl. Set aside three of the pits to use later.

2. Mash up the avocado goodness with a fork until somewhat smooth, but still with some lumps.
3. Chop garlic, onion, tomato, and cilantro. I like my onion and tomato chunky, but the consistency is up to you.

4. Add the garlic, onion, tomato, and cilantro to the mashed up avocados and mix well.

5. Cut the lime in half and squeeze the juice of both halves into the bowl and stir.

6. Add salt and pepper to taste.

7. Toss in the three pits. You can either arrange them for aesthetic purposes, or push them to the bottom of the bowl to hide them.

8. Garnish with a bit of chopped up tomtao and serve with tortilla chips. Enjoy!

*Serves 4-6 people.*

NOTE: The lime juice and avodaco pits are excellent natural perservatives, which keep your guacamole from turning icky brown.

Not only are avocados a rich source of monounsaturated fatty acids including oleic acid, which has recently been shown to offer significant protection against breast cancer, but it is also a very concentrated dietary source of the carotenoid lutein; it also contains measurable amounts of related carotenoids (zeaxanthin, alpha-carotene and beta-carotene) plus significant quantities of tocopherols (vitamin E). Avocados are a good source of potassium, a mineral that helps regulate blood pressure. Adequate intake of potassium can help to guard against circulatory diseases, like high blood pressure, heart disease or stroke. One cup of avocado has 23% of the Daily Value for folate, a nutrient important for heart health.


Tefi's Weekend Wrap-Up

What a crazy weekend here in Big D! I'll bet I can speak for most of the nation when I say, "Brrrr." It's freakin' cold out there, folks. (And now I've just sprouted 12 gray hairs, talking about the weather as a conversation starter. Geez.)

I didn't get any of my gardening done. In fact, J and I brought in all of the plants that I had potted because I was scared the cold weather would get them down. Then I would get down and next thing you know, the whole world's coming to an end. I have that much power.

Last week I'd made three, count them, three trips to nurseries to scour the aisles for the perfect plant. Really, what I was looking for were decorative cabbages that come in shades of purple, white, green and yellow. No such luck. I see them dotting every corporate flower bed in the city, but not a one in three different nurseries. Go figure. So I bought some grass, some red coleus - two kinds, one with velvety red leaves, and one with a velvety flowery pointy thing coming out the top. (My technical jargon frightens me sometimes.) I also bought a shrub with these beautiful yellow blooms that smells like a cross between lemongrass and mint. It should grow to be about 6 feet tall and it's going in the flower bed right in front of the den window that faces the street. I also bought a hardy rose bush with hot pink blooms as well as some succulents. I can't get enough succulents!

Tefi Stuffs
On the Tefi Designs front, I made a ton of Juicy Fruit necklaces, chokers, and bracelets Saturday night before heading out to the Dubliner with Jason, Laura, Neil, and cousin Jennifer for some beer and general brouhaha. As I was furiously beading away I failed to notice the pinched nerve in my shoulder taking over my left side. No matter, I replenished my Juicy Fruit supply as I had completely sold out of every piece except for one bracelet and a slew of earrings. The earrings don't sell as well. I wonder why...? Anyhoo, Tefi's signature piece is back in effect, so click here to order one today!

In the Family Way
Sunday J and I spent the day with his family. We ate the proverbial Easter ham, and watched as the kids went on an egg hunt. The best part was trying to help two-year-old Reagan. First off, she couldn't understand why we needed to collect brightly colored eggs. As I'd point one out to her, she'd look at me as if to say, "Yeah, there's an egg there. So what? What do you want me to do with it?" Apparently, the neon plastic eggs are supposed to be hidden in the purple jew. Once she caught onto the fact that a) all the other kids were doing it, and b) there's candy inside the eggs, she was a mini-woman on a mission. Her endeavors were so sincere that when it was time to take a group photo of all the kids with their full baskets, Reagan kept right on collecting eggs from her cousin's baskets. No one had bothered to explain that "found" eggs were off limits.

On the other side of the family divide, my mom and Randy returned from Guatemala yesterday afternoon. I'll post some pics once I get the predictable Snapfish email. The last time I was there, Jennifer and I were 15 and sneaking beers from the resort bar. Okay, it was one beer, and I let Jennifer take the wrap for it. It was the least I could do.

Thursday, April 5, 2007

Ugly Betty necklace

This is a repost from the Crafty Chica. I love it so much I wanted to share it with you. Ugly Betty forever!

Cardstock, pencil, scissors
Craft knife
Polymer clay
Industrial strength craft glue
Acrylic craft paint in gold and black
Eye pins
Assorted beads
Soft Flex wire
Crimp beads
2 jump rings
Necklace clasp
Needle nose pliers

Cut a strand of wire long enough so you can double it to be at your desired length. At one end, holding two strands of the wire, feed on a crimp bead. Loop the wire ends through the crimp bead to make a loop at the end so you can attach a jump ring later. Use the needle nose pliers to flatten the crimp bead.

Begin to add the beads on the double strand of wire. When finished, close off the other end by repeating the crimping process. Add a jump ring at each end, and the clasp.

To make the initial, cut a piece of cardstock measuring 1-1/2-inch square. Draw out the letter in the square and cut out. Take gumball-sized piece of the clay and flatten it (about the thickness of a pancake). Place the cardstock template on it and use the craft knife to cut out the shape of the letter. Use your fingers to smooth the edges. Snip the eye pins to about 1/4 of an inch and insert them at the bottom of the letter. Add an eye pin at the top of the letter. If you have a letter that is open at the top (like a K), glue one on each side, or glue a jump ring to the back of the necklace later.

Bake in oven according to package directions. Let cool. One at a time, remove the eye pins, add a drop of glue and insert back into each hole. Repeat for all the eye pins. Let dry.

Paint the letter gold, let dry and lightly rub on black paint around the edges. Use your finger to rub in more gold, so it has an antique finish. Use more eye pins to add dangling beads to the eye pins glued at the bottom of the letter. Add a jump ring to attach the letter to the strand of beads.

NOTE: Credit for the original design goes to Jennifer Parrish of The Stoneham, Massachusetts jewelry designer made and supplied the faux pearl embellished necklace for Ugly Betty star, America Ferrera .

I've got a girl crush.

Her name is Lily Allen and she is fan-freakin-tastic. She's a little bit nasty, a little bit Donna Reed, a little bit Run DMC, and a lot funny. So far I've had her song "Smile" stuck in my head for about a week, totally diggin' on her accent and witty ways. I bought her CD, Alright, Still, last night and listened to it this morning.*

Even tho I'm ten years older than she, I can relate to all of her songs. She sings about being jilted; about breaking up with her a-hole boyfriend; about her idiosyncratic grandmother; about being chatted up at a club. And when she smiles she reminds me of a young Goldie Hawn from Laugh In. Just check out these bangs!

Lily got her start the ultimate D.I.Y. way. She left school to strike out on her own with a singing career. Her initial form of marketing? Uploading songs to her profile on Myspace. Next thing she knew, she's got a record deal and is performing on Saturday Night Live.

My favorite song from Alright, Still is probably "Nan Your a Window Shopper," a snarky homage to her grandmother. Just read these lyrics:

You get up in the morning and you like your tea milky
You fumble for your glasses coz without 'em you cant see
It's funny how I come round your house and I'm 20
And I still have to wear all the presents you sent me
I walk into your kitchen, everything's got a label
You done your Christmas shopping and we're only in April
And you won't leave the house unless your wearing your thermals
You're covered all in cat hair and you're stinking like Strepsils

Who knows what Strepsils are? Probably a Brittish form of Preperation-H or Ben-Gay. Either way, the album is killer.

Check her sites here: or

Watch the "Smile" video here:

And here she talks about body image and eats a chili cheese dog with extra jalapenos:

* This is a repost from my original blog at Myspace with a few edits hither and thither.


I was eight when A Christmas Story came out and it quickly became a personal favorite years before pop culture and commercialism took it over. Ralphie and I were the same age, and we were both idealistic and stubborn children, not willing to give up when we wanted something. Seriously, who wouldn't want an official Red Ryder carbine action two-hundred shot range model air rifle with a compass in the stock and this thing that tells time?

Last night, Robert Clark, director of A Christmas Story and his 22 year old son died in a head on collision with a drunk maniac. The drunk? He walked away with minor wounds. His guilt, I hope will haunt him for the rest of his life. It's the least fate can do.


Meep Meep

Yesterday a wily coyote weaved his way through Chicago, first the suburbs, then the inner-city , then downtown - a Quizno's in downtown to be exact.

Experts say the year and a half old canine was at the age when coyotes strike out on their own to find new territory. Apparently, this guy's territory was the juice cooler at a downtown Chicago Quizno's. He spent last night with animal control and will be released at a rehab refuge today. I could make a joke about the roadrunner cartoons, but I'll leave the groaners up to the cardboard talking heads in the news footage below.

Read the full story here, and be sure to watch the video!

Wednesday, April 4, 2007

Gardening at Night

Tonite I had Cheetos and Pepsi for dinner. Not good. I started counting to 21 because that's the serving size for Cheetos, says Frito Lay. I lost count because I was on the phone chatting with Jane, Amy's mom. So once I hung up, I started over again. I know, not exactly ideal, but neither is eating Cheetos and Pepsi for dinner. I lost count the second time. With neon orange fingertips, I gave up.

But this blog isn't entitled What Not to Eat for Dinner, so let me get to the meat of this.

With all of the rainy weather Dallas has gotten lately, things look really lush around the Catherine Street abode. Oak Cliff in general is especially verdant in comparison to other parts of Big D, and I credit its age and established locals for all of the beautiful green growth. Having cliffs, tons of parks, a lake, and a huge public golf course doesn't hurt, neither. But with this lushness comes those unwanted weeds that seem to appear overnight. Jason mowed the lawn for the first time this past Sunday, and that took care of that. (I'm not one to actually weed when there's a perfectly good mower and a perfectly good boyfriend willing to do the job.)

That said, he took down dozens of 16-inch+ tall weeds, including this one that had some slimy friends feasting on it soon as the sun went down. Imagine my surprise when I saw this:

And here's a close-up (not for the squeamish):

I know they look all gross and boogery, but they are actually very cute, docile little creatures. I had three in my 3rd grade classroom years ago as part of a required science unit and learned to really appreciate slugs. Sure, they eat your plants, but if you aren't afraid to pick them up (why should you be?), you can plop them right next to a weed and watch them go to town.

Then tonite, I decided it was time to do some container gardening. I potted over a dozen plants, mostly herbs. I hope they'll be established and fully grown in time for my Studio Tour on April 21 and 22 (check out for more info).

I planted this Bolivian Jew in a planter that I got from my late grandmother Mildred.

Here we have tomato plants (blue container, large terra cotta), dill (froggie, small terra cotta), chives (round pottery) and an old kolachoe from last year (small green pot).

Here's some basil, rosemary, and Purple Jew (seriously, what's up with the jew thing?):

Here's one of Mildred's cacti, which has been growing like gangbusters since she died last year. Also, be on the lookout for some burgeoning strawberries soon...

This is a three-tier planter with last year's plants with one tiny addition at the bottom center. Yup, more strawberries!

We thought this hibiscus tree (a housewarming gift from the Hukills) was a goner. You see, I noticed it had a mad aphid infestation while we had it indoors during the winter. I put it out in the garage, but the cold was too much for it and all the leaves wilted and browned. I was ready to throw it out before my friend Keith pointed out some small buds. Holy crap! A little pruning et voila. Leaves!

And here's the whole shebang! In a month I expect it to be much greener. Plus, I'll be adding more color to it shortly.

Oh no he di'int.

Disturbing. (1 minute 47 seconds)

Disturbing-er. (24 seconds)

On a funnier note, AU students tried to make a citizens' arrest on Rove as he left a speaking engagement for the campus Republicans. Here's the video link:

The Chocolate Eucharist

How can something so wrong taste so good?

My friend Amber just sent me this article. We both agreed that, in the context of this artist's piece, we would eat Jesus. (Cue thunder claps and lightning.)

Don't let your life-clock light up.

I am psyched. Completely. Utterly. Psyched.

They are remaking Logan's Run. Aw hells yeah! And by "they" I mean Joel Silver, producer of The Matrix and The Reaping.

"I love the original material but I think that version is a bit silly," he told reporters in Barcelona.

Silly? Huh. Says him. Frankly, I think it's cinematic greatness. Well, perhaps that's a bit much. It's greatness insofar as making a sci-fi classic in 1976 can be great.

For those of you under 30 (and believe me, in this context that's a blessing), Logan's Run is a must-see. It's a futuristic story about a world where, once you turn 30, you are killed. This is to help curb the population problem and get things on an even keel. Utopia, dystopia, whatever. It's greatness.

Plus, it was filmed in Valley View Mall right here in Dallas. You can see Michael York cavorting about the shopping center trying not to get his 30-year-old self killed. There are moments where he passes by an area that you swear is where Things Remembered or Claire's should be. It's really cool. Trust me.

There are also scenes from Fort Worth's Water Gardens, but we won't go there. No, I mean we literally won't go there. They still have it shut down since some teens got themselves killed there breaking the rules.

But I can't end this blog on a dour note. Wa-wah. Debbie Downer strikes again. How about some scenes from Logan's Run to get the remake party started?

movie poster

Logan 5 and Jessica 6

the life-clock

Tefi's Killer Black Beans

Don't let the word "killer" fool ya. These aren't spicy in the hot sense of the word. These black beans of mine are spicy in the garlicky sense of the word. Thus "killer" can be good (as in tastes like salty Cuban heaven) or bad (as in boyfriend won't kiss me for a week). But who needs kisses when you've got a simple yet delicious recipe like this?

2 cans black beans (whole or refried)
4-6 medium garlic cloves
1/2 medium white onion
olive oil
garlic salt

1. Open the cans of black beans and drain almost all of the juice. Leave a little so the buggers don't dry out in the cooking process.

2. Pour about 2 tablespoons of olive oil into a skillet and heat for about 30 seconds on medium.

3. Chop onion and garlic cloves and add to hot olive oil in skillet. Stir around so the onion and garlic is coated in the oil. You should hear a light sizzle sound, but no popping. If it's popping, it's too hot.

4. Relax a little. The onion and garlic should saute for about 3 minutes, so go ahead and watch a little Law & Order while you wait. That's what I do.

5. After the onion and garlic has become slightly translucent (this helps lower the potency and bring out a certain delicious flavor), add the two cans of beans and mix well.

6. Add as much garlic salt and cumin as you can stand. Start off with a little, stir, taste. Add more if you need to.

7. Cook for 5-8 minutes; stir occasionally. After about 5 minutes, taste the goodness. If it still tastes tinny, keep cooking until that metal taste is all gone. I swear, people think I use dried beans in the recipe. Ha!

8. Serve in bowl with a dab of sour cream and a little cilantro sprig. So delish!

*Serves 4-6 people, depending on how hungry they are. *

NOTE: If, in the cooking process, the beans get dry, just add a couple splashes of water. Uh-oh. Did you add too much? No biggie. Just cook it a bit until the water is absorbed. Seriously, it's hard to muck up Tefi's Killer Black Beans!

Black beans are chock full of fiber, which we all know is aces for cholesterol and blood sugar problems. When paired with whole grains like brown rice, black beans provide virtually fat-free high quality protein. The little black guys are also loaded with antioxidants and iron. Have a problem with sulfites? Black beans contain a trace mineral called molybdenum, which helps detoxify sulfites. So go on and drink that red wine with abandon!


I'm all inspirizzled.

I'll try to make this short.

Lately I've been inspired to create all kinds of new things, most of them still stuck in my head, just waiting to burst out. My jewelry, to me, is just getting better and better. My photography? A little bit, but not enough to really showcase what I've been making lately. Of course, I'm nowhere near "master" or even "master's butt wiper," but I feel I'm getting closer. I've been able to invest more time, money, and energy into higher-priced components (semi-precious stones and gems, sterling silver, handmade ceramic, etc.) that I'm really falling in love with my pieces. I wear everything I make at least once to see how it acts and reacts with mundance movements and such. I touch my pieces as I type on the computer, loving the way the coral feels in my hands - so smooth and solid. I rub the sterling silver pendant like a worry doll when I'm, well, worried. It helps.

I love what I do, and I love the other work I've seen other people do. There's so much to admire out there and so much inspiration. One of my uber inspirations comes from jewelry artist Jes MaHarry. I first saw her work in the Sundance Jewelry Catalogue (as in Robert Redford, baby). Her stuff is just delicious (and incredibly expensive!). I aspire to have what she has made for herself. Here's a peek into her studio and ranch:

They say the natural progression of an apprentice is to start low and gradually work her way up to higher level techniques. I've found that's true for jewelry designers, including me. We all start low, taking apart old pieces and remaking them. Then we go out into the world and buy inexpensive glass beads and go from there. The next stop is higher quality glass, gemstones, sterling silver, coral, etc. That's where I am. My next step is to continue learning metalsmithing (one class doesn't even scratch the surface, so to speak), particularly working with sterling silver. Jes' work is something I aspire to, and with a little effort (okay, a lot) I know I can make it. I may be 80 and not own a ranch with dogs and horses, but I can live with that.

So long as I have my red coral and sterling silver worry pendant.

Myspace falls silent.

Over the past few weeks, Myspace has fallen silent. I used to blog there daily about all sorts of things funny, touching, irreverant. Now all I see are ads for really bad movies and an occasional funny bulletin, tho most of it is another droll survey or dumb men vs. women jokes.

My best friend, Jen, is no longer able to Myspace (yes, it's a verb) during the day now that she's got her fancy new job with its fancy spreadsheets and even fancier firewalls. So now that she's gone, I hardly see the point. We'd spend the days amusing each other, commenting on blogs, making fun of goofballs, generally being bad. Yeah, we did.

Now it's just crickets. For the first time since I started my trek with Myspace have I signed on at the beginning of the day and not had one email, nor one comment, nor one blog posting. Wtf? It's like that movie 28 Days Later where the hero wakes up and no one is around.

Oh. I hope my Myspace buddies haven't turned into virus-infected zombie maniacs.

So I'm outtie. No more Myspace for me as far as the good blogdiggity lifestyle goes. Oh sure, I'll still use it to post announcements, send emails, or spy on friends of yore and engage in a little schadenfreude as I laugh at the way their lives have turned out. Sure, I may sound a bit spiteful. But just a bit. It's good to know that, tho I don't believe in karma, it's still a nice idea.

So to kick off my brand spankin' new blog, I'm going to post my very first Myspace blog, which also happens to be an essay I submitted to NPR's This I Believe segment. Those biznatches never picked it up, but they posted it on there All-the-Essays-That-Didn't-Cut-It portion of their web site:

So what now? Well, for starters, here are a few factoids about Ye Olde Blogger:

Name Stephanie
Nicknames Moxie, Tefi, Tefi Two Fists
Hometown Dallas
Loves Making jewelry, rescuing animals, practicing the art of Shaolin kung fu (ee-ya!)
Owns: Tefi Designs LLC, chiggity check it out -
Why this blog? My goal for this new blog is to scour the web finding the coolest in the handmade DIY lifestyle, focusing on jewelry, home decor, and fashion.
What else? I'll also be posting my ramblings about life and love and all the things that happen to me that seem really important. Then I'll share them with you, and you'll yawn and say, "Jesus, that was a waste of my time." But at least I'll feel better.

Hi. I'm new here.


Let's see if this works.

Yesterday it kept giving me error messages and was definitely nettling my britches.