About Me

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JLynn has been in the Art, Craft & Jewelry industry for over 30 years ~ promoting creativity through Education and Media. As a published designer, JLynn is known for her colorful Art, Artisan Jewelry, Altered ART Wood Tiles. Online since 2004, a former eBay Power Seller, on Etsy, and Amazon. Family, Art, Nature and Kaleidoscopes are some of her inspirations

Monday, February 5, 2024

Snowy Sunset


Relax and be still...like freshly fallen snow

I love the coziness and simplicity of the winter months, along with that magical feeling after the snow stops.  That moment when you walk outside, hear the crunch of snow under your boots, see your breath in the air, and look up at the beautiful blue winter skies.  It's quite the sight to see, and one that tends to give me feelings of renewed energy for all things in life.  January & February have always been my "blank slate" - which means you'll find me re-organizing, getting things in order, and planning for the rest of the year (and beyond).

Not sure where the last four years have gone - other then it moved fast and had a few moments of chaos, especially when we look back at the pandemic years, politics, and world & local news.  2023 went out with some tough stuff for our family, as in December - my Mom had a stroke, and my husband had open heart surgery (an aortic aneurysm that grew fast).  Thankfully both of them are healing and recovering well.  However, we are the type of people that keep a positive outlook, and appreciate that life is good, with lots of things to be thankful for, including our 2 and 3 year old Grandchildren that I watch on a daily basis.   

So happy to say, that 2024 came in with a different feeling and energy.  It's like a new perspective and knowledge that this is the year where I will have the opportunity to squeeze in more time for creativity, and make my creative plans a reality, with a re-design of my business and the ways I can impact others through my art, talents, skills and ideas/thoughts.  Speaking of impacting others, here's a tip for all my creative friends that might need to hear this...

If someone gives you advice to stop doing something, and that "something" is something you feel passionately about...please do yourself a favor and go into selective hearing mode!  Life is too short, to abandon any of your dreams, or to stop doing something that you love doing.  There is no-one that knows what's best for you, better than YOU.  Keep on - keeping on in all your creative endeavors and life!

Next month on the blog look for some new creative project shares, and possibly some changes to my logo, as I prepare to get back into the swing of things on the business side.

Have fun, be kind and creative!

Hugs, JLynn

Monday, January 8, 2024

2024 - the new "Happy Place"!

2024...Work in Progress - my new Happy Place (aka Studio)
It's been a while since I've posted here on the Blog...a few years to be exact.   In that time - a pandemic hit all of us, and on the personal side - our family had a household move in 2022, and since then have had a variety of health challenges and surgeries.  However, during this time, we've also made a LOT of wonderful and happy memories - so that's where our focus is - the good stuff!   LIFE happens and priorities shift - and you always need to go with the flow.

Currently, I'm working behind the scenes on finishing up work on the new art/jewelry studio.  Over the last year, my husband and I have slowly made changes to a sub-par builder grade Mudroom.  We overhauled the cubby and coat closet wall into an amazing wall of closed storage with reclaimed vintage doors on a barn door track, and a closed door, floor to ceiling storage shelves that leaves plenty of room for multiple art and craft organization.

Since these photos, more improvements have been made, and I'm hoping that 2024 will be the year to get back to some regular creativity.
In the meantime, we continue to make progress with home improvements and making the house our own.  Here's just a couple weekend projects we tackled this past summer...the upstairs hallway and the lower level landing.  Both featured Centennial wood reclaimed wood planks.  The upper level we created a bit more of a coastal feel between the colors and adding a lot of trimwork.  This made it a very long, dark and dreary hallway into a much more interesting, brighter and happier wall!  We still need to add some wall decor, but we're getting there.

And here's the lower level landing (just a few weeks ago decorated for the holidays).  It featured a small accent wall with Centennial Wood plans, along with a custom project we did utilizing extra wood to create a custom box frame, cut birch branches, and an art panel I painted using a dry brush, blending technique with acrylic paints. 


Stay safe and healthy everyone - and enjoy the New Year! 

Thursday, December 31, 2020

Hello 2021 - looking forward to all the possibilities!


Wintertime and the New Year...it's a time when Mother Nature digs in deep, and re-energizes herself.  I happen to be one of those people that love the transition from the Holidays, to the quiet and peaceful time of "Winter".  It always provides a clean slate, fresh beginnings, with lots of hope and wishes knocking on the door.  It's typically a time when many of us re-organize our things and refresh our home surroundings (yes, I'm in the process of this lol).  Of course being home much more this past year, definitely made for more challenges - however, for our family, it held many blessings, with much to be thankful for.  Our daughter got married and we gained a new Son-in-Law (they were married in our Family Room through a virtual ceremony with the County Courhouse with relatives across the USA and overseas dialing in too), we hosted a virtual Baby Shower (one for our out-of-state Family and one for a handful of local friends planned following all State Guidelines for Gatherings), our Son turned 30 (feeling old lol) and we got to celebrate with him, and give him a Covid Haircut, and then we had the pleasure of being introduced to our Baby Granddaughter this past Fall.

So although we were not immune to all the worries and stress that Covid has brought into our lives, the choice for 2021 remains easy.  No matter what is happening in the world, our family is choosing to continue to look at all the small, every-day blessings, and all the things to be thankful for, while respecting the masks, social distancing, restrictions and guidelines to get us through this pandemic.  Wishing everyone a New Year filled with hope, kindness, and love.  

Now with that said - this past year had our family prioritizing - with the #1 Goal...to say Healthy.  The thought was - if we can remain healthy, then the ones we love, stay healthy too.  With elderly parents that live out of state, family members with compromised immune systems, our daughter who was pregnant for the majority of 2020, and now a new baby Granddaughter - we have taken the pandemic seriously and follows all guidelines (and continue to do so.  Yes, like many families, we missed seeing our relatives this past year, but we adapted, and stayed positive, while increasing phone time, activities, texting, and video connections which has been a fun thing, even for our little 3 month old Granddaughter!  

Business wise - the pandemic challenged many across the USA and abroad. Some businesses thrived, others buckled - and others like me, were able to go with the flow.  For my business that included reducing production, decreasing expenses, adjusting plans, and staying afloat on a part-time basis.  I had the added challenge of being "off" for 1 1/2 years prior to the pandemic (due to an accident in February of 2019 that resulted in major surgery and a year long rehab), I'm still able to experiment with all the creative ways my reconstructed arm behaves.  The plus side to being off and then forced into a part-time pandemic status, is that I've had more time to plan, and more time to enjoy all the family things - which balances many things out in positive ways.  Ironically, for the last 10-12 years now, I've worked a creative job from home - so there was not much transition or change needed for me and my job when the pandemic hit.  Instead, the transition involved adjusting to the things you take for granted...like in person grocery shopping, going out for lunch or dinner - and making quick shopping trips to our favorites stores for home decor, and crafts - or simply running errands.  I do miss that but no complaints here!  We also live 30-45 minutes from our children, so have been fortunate with quarantining in all households, to be able to see each other. Work wise - my husband transitioned to working at home with periodic visits to his empty building and office; our Son (who is an essential Assistant Store Director in the Grocery field), has been able to remain working, due in part to his employer's dedication to keeping their staff safe, by providing proper PPE, and following all guidelines and suggestions by the CDC.  It also helps that majority of people in Maryland take the pandemic seriously, with the "Wear the Damn Mask" tag line that our Maryland Governor came up with, and the "Mask-On Maryland" we hear on the news every day.  Our Son-in-Law is a Chemist and works in a small Lab with minimal people, and our Daughter - an Accountant, transitioned to working from home during the majority of her pregnancy, followed by her maternity leave, and then resuming work just last week from home.

In closing, 2021 brings a lot of hope for changes.  But beyond the obvious, I am looking forward to creating a new mix of creativity for my business at a part-time work-from-home status (with Art, Jewelry, Components,and Decor of course), AND becoming a full-fledged "Mimi" to help my daughter out with childcare, as she returns to a work-from-home status (at least through Springtime...if not Summertime).  Yesterday, I spent the day doing a little of everything - my way of putting out the good vibes, for remaining balanced in all things in the New Year.  One of the last things I did was pull out my Watercolor and Inks at 11:40pm for a quick sketch and imperfect, little Watercolor, that I'm calling "Unity".  Sometimes it's fun to take an idea and do a quick sketch and sample before settling into the longer paintings.  I'm very much looking forward to creating more Art, and other meaningful pieces to wear and place in the home in 2021! 

Until I start up again in January - be safe out there everyone! 

Happy New Year!

Warmly, JLynn

Friday, December 6, 2019

Goodbye 2019 - Hello 2020!

Warm Holiday Wishes and Joy to All!

Looking back on 2019, and looking forward to 2020, brings a lot of mixed feelings - but most importantly, one of thanks and blessings! 

If you didn't catch my lack of activity and MIA status in 2019 - JLynnJewels (my creative business for many years now) needed to be put on hold.  You see, in late 2018, we began the process of getting our former house ready for the Real Estate market (top left photo), and put in a contract for our new home to be built in 2019 (bottom right). Having been in our old home since 2001, it was a huge undertaking in getting the accumulated items under control to a manageable level.  UHaul LOVED us...multiple truck rentals, and multiple storage units.  Our Son and Daughter also purchased their first homes in March and mid-May too (bottom left photos) - but we still managed to get the house on the market in mid-March.  In April we received two offers, and closed in mid-May.  We then crashed with our Son for a month, before finally moving into our new home in June.  

Of course, in between all of this moving preparation and excitement, I also had an accident in early February.  One that required an involved surgery, with some pretty impressive hardware to put my arm back together again.  Today, marks 10 months since my accident, and I'm so very thankful for my family who have helped out in many ways (including packing up)...plus my fantastic Doctor, and awesome Physical Therapy team - both of whom were instrumental in getting me to the point where I could transition to home therapy, and continue working on my mobility and strength.  I will skip all the graphic photos of stitches, bruises, and swollen arm to myself - and just share a really cool "Hardware" photo...
 One of the first x-rays (of many)!

Although business projects have been on hiatus this year - the months of quiet, and not being able to do much with the arm, allowed me the opportunity to analyze, think, and plan for the transition and blending of the old and new products, ideas, and the focus for the business.  If you missed the announcement on Facebook in January of last year, JLynnJewels will be joining forces with Creative Life and Home, and together will be offering a beautiful mix of Artisan Jewelry, Accessories, DIY Componets, Artwork, Decor, and some unique, small accent furniture pieces - as I get back into the swing of things in 2020.  

As mentioned above, I'm still working on unpacking from our move, but I'm also refinishing some vintage furniture pieces for the creative spaces.  During August, I purchased this lovely, vintage Armoire that was finished with Dixie Belle paint (one of my favorites).  Unfortunately, although it looked pretty, it had not been primed for bleedthrough, nor was it properly cleaned (basic, deep, and enzyme treatments for musty/smoke odors on the inside of the cabinet - which I didn't realize until I got it home).  The green pitcher photos really show just how much grime came off from inside the unit (this was probably the sixth empty/refill with basic Dawn/Warm water) - followed by deep cleaning with TSP, and then multiple enzyme treatments and sealing.  I think she is almost ready for final finishing now with a clean bill of health and extension of life!

In September, I purchased a TLC project piece for $75.  Aside from the crayon, nail polish, and other surface abuse - the entire piece had not been painted correctly, so we needed to strip this down to the original.  In the process of doing that, I located the maker marks, and after researching online - discovered it was a vintage Ethan Allen Computer Desk/hutch/chair set.  We are currently refinishing and retrofitting the pull out for a real drawer front, along with a few other subtle changes to coordinate with the cream and turquoise color scheme in the office.  Needless to say - both pieces have been a lot of work, that have been completed in small increments of time and sections...but it's definitely worth the time and effort to see them both shine agan.  Here are some pics in progress...

So for all of you that are tired of the social media perfection photos often seen on line - here are some real, authentic, "in the now" photos of my future creative spaces!  Proof positive that I definitely have some hot messes going on lol!

Here's the future office - and for perspective, the counter height desk is 3' x 5', so you can visualize just how much needs to be put away.  There are a few other things (stools, accent cabinet, and decor pieces) that need to be painted, but I'm definitely getting close to the finish line! 

And here's the future Studio space...this will be my area for the messier projects (such as painting, drawing, dyes, metals, patina, and more).  It's a smaller space but has a lot of storage between the double closet, cubbies, and a short line of 1/2 cabinets/countertops along one side.  The large counteretop desk in here, is identical to the one in the office too - so a lot of surface work space at 3' x 5'.  My Laundry and Utility sink are on the flip side of this space (bottom pic) - along with our Rescue Bunnies (Angel, Maggie-Moo, and Bella-Boo) - the desk under the window is the one for my office and will be moving once I do final sanding and painting. 

Well that's the catch-up...and although I haven't returned to the bench for metal, jewelry, or woodworking yet, I have begun to draw and paint again.  Here's a quick peek of my current work-in-progress...some Wooden Tree Ornaments that will hopefully be receiving an ombre dye finish, followed up with some fun handpainted details once they're dry :) 

Happy Holidays everyone!

Warmly,  JLynn

Tuesday, December 18, 2018

Calm and Peaceful Thoughts

Peaceful Holiday & New Year Thoughts...

Doves of course represent peace...
They are known to help sooth our worries,
while encouraging us to find a sense of
renewed energy and purpose in our lives.

So as we enter the last days of 2018,
my wish for you is...
Sweet White Dove thoughts
for a beautiful transition of 2018 to 2019.

For me...
2018 was a whirlwind of activity behind the scenes.
My time was split fairly evenly between looking for a new home,
that will take my husband and I, a wee-bit South mid-2019...
and preparing my current business for a transition, merge and move too.
All of which promises to make 2019 a year of lots of Happy things.

There will be time to share more of the details in 2019,
So for now, I'll leave you all with sending out
sweet White Dove Wishes for a beautiful 2019!

If you haven't had the opportunity to carve out some special time for you and your loved ones, I hope you are able to - over the last two weeks of 2018.

Happy Holidays
and special Wishes for a 
Happy New Year too!

Tuesday, July 24, 2018

Pathyways to Emotional Intelligence

IQ + Emotional Intelligence + Creative Intelligence = HAPPINESS!

There will be no apologies because I’ve not written on my blog since January lol – but there will be a catch-up on Emotional Intelligence with a twist of Creative Intelligence thrown in here.  You see, “Intelligence” as in IQ, - is just not enough.  This morning, I felt compelled to write – because when you get upset with something you’ve seen, read, or heard - the best thing to do is, put the good stuff back out into world, to offset the bad.  In addition, if your feathers are still a bit ruffled - then take some time to be one with nature.  Which is exactly what I did for 5 minutes...I took a step outside in my bare feet and captured some beautiful photos of the Hydrangea in my backyard, during a light rain shower (in between the torrential downpours we've been having this week which are much needed though!).

Now you're probably wondering...what did I read that ruffled my feathers?  This...

“People who do NOT have (BLANK) are (BLANK)” – and those that don’t have (BLANK), are not going to get anywhere in life.

Mind you I left the actual offending words blank as most of you can fill in your own, based on your own experiences.  In this case - I don't even think you need the actual words to see or feel the not so nice energy coming from a so-called educated person.  Does all this sound familiar?  Chances are that no matter where you are, or what you do – you will have encountered a person that speaks like this. Someone that is highly judgmental, critical - and has little respect for his/her fellow people - and that same person believes that their way is "the" way..and that if you're not on the same path as they are - well - you don't get "any where" according to their narrowed viewpoint.   Which of course made me think and ask..."where", is this person's, where??  Makes you wonder doesn't it?  Is that the "where" - where you really want to be?  Not for me - no thank you - definitely not my cup of tea.

Is it possible that IQ has taken over all facets of this type of  person, to the point where they forgot their manners?  Maybe.  Or quite possibly instead - it's more about the person's education, and the fact it didn't include any type of Emotional Intelligence...  Either way, all I know, is that the "Magic 3" (my catch phrase for IQ, Emotional Intelligence with a twist of Creative Intelligence), make the best combination for peace and happiness in life.  Individuals are made up of more than the number of their IQ – and it’s the Emotional Intelligence portion that touches upon our hearts, mixes in compassion, with a generosity of mind, spirit, and sensitivity.  Add to that - there is a certain kind of freedom gained for having risen above the old ways that judge, criticize, and bully – to instead, utilize your combined intelligence (the magic three...) to encourage, inspire, and lift others up. 

So, if you have ever felt hurt by inconsiderate comments like this – let me remind you again, that ALL of Life is unique, and that ALL paths are unique, for each and every individual, including YOU.  One can focus on the downers in the world - or one can realize that there are more people showering out the good, positive vibes and energy - having focused and educated themselves to find that special balance for IQ, Emotional Intelligence, and Creative Intelligence.

If you’d like to read more on the Creative Intelligence side – and how you can BE the CAUSE for creating a more well rounded Education that encompasses not only IQ, but Emotional and Creative Intelligence - here’s the link to my latest “Inspiration Rejuvenation” article in my Facebook Group “Artisans Create Together” – called Creative Intelligence.

Looking forward to sharing more with ideas, thoughts, and creative projects as I transition and bring together JLynnJewels and Creative Soul & Home.