I’m not very literate when it comes to social media and netiquette. I usually mess up email chain letters, and I have a habit of checking out email rumors and urban hoaxes. I don’t have a blog roll, and though I have bajillions of bookmarks for favorite sites, truth is, I don’t actually use them that much.

That said, I do have places on the Internet I enjoy. So here is a cyber-Christmas present for you today–just a list of some places I think are cool, or sweet, or interesting, or just plain fun, in no particular order. (I tried not to duplicate my I’ve Been Tagged! post from a few weeks ago….)

If you like old beads, you will love The Bead Collector Network, especially their BCN online forum. It focuses on ancient beads and trade beads, but segues into other beads from time to time. Check out the brand new gallery section, featuring over 16,000 images of beads recently compiled by forum hosts Joyce And David Holloway. You can get lost for days viewing great images of unusual, collectible beads.

If you need a giggle, check out I Can Haz Cheezburger?, a site filled with pics of cats doing silly things, with equally silly captions. Hint: The captions are written in ‘text message’ style, hence the odd abbreviations and misspellings. Plus, if cats could text, it would look like this because paws aren’t as dexterous as thumbs when it comes to punching those tiny keys…. My all-time personal favorite is this one, because it brings back memories of me & my sibs searching the couch for $$ after my dad took a nap.

Supposedly there’s a similar site for dogs, but my heart couldn’t take it.

If you have a friend…you know the kind of friend I mean…who reads all those email hoaxes and feels it is their mission in life to alert everyone they know to the imminent dangers of say, canola oil or if you are one of those people, then this hoax-busting site is for you. There are others, but Snopes is pretty good, and I’ve grown to rely on it when someone sends me an email telling me about Bill Gates’s latest give-away.

Of course, some of these stories are true. Which makes it all more fun.

Have I shared the website of zefrank before?

If you haven’t tried Twitter, be careful–it’s as addictive as Facebook. But a little less cluttered. Here’s me on Twitter, and don’t say I didn’t warn you. I would share my Facebook link, but I can’t handle any more pokes, ornaments or the myriad other requests I’ve received that simply baffle me.)

Okay, I’m only saying this for those people who, like me, really like knowing how a movie or book ends before we read it. (I will not respond to your snide comments from those of you who don’t. I’ve heard them all before, believe me.) But if you share this secret sin, then The Movie Spoiler is the site for you.

I’ve taken up knitting again, but not too many knitting blogs. Mostly because the people that write them actually finish projects, which makes me feel bad about myself since I have been reduced to simple hats and scarves due to lack of concentration and an overabundance of guilt about not doing other things. But I do like Yarn Ball Boogie, despite the fact that he not only finishes projects, he finishes difficult projects, but he’s snide and funny and outrageous, too. So that makes it okay.

My two favorite yarn websites are Webs whose warehouse of sale yarns is dangerously close to Keene, NH, and KnitPicks, with really good sales and hugely affordable wool/llama yarns from Peru.

I thought this virtual makeover was fun enough to bookmark, though all my makeovers come out very similar. Hmmmmmm…..

I don’t know why, but I like this fun little site about things you can make with stuff from the dollar store.

I adore Christine Kane’s blog, but some of her articles really resonate. Especially this one on business advice for sensitive artist types.

If you like little peeks into other people’s lives (mostly funny, sometimes poignant) and you haven’t discovered Found Magazine’s website yet, then you are in for a treat. It’s made me more careful about what I put in writing.

I’m almost embarrassed to admit how quickly I can become intrigued with wholesale lots of memo pads and Powerpuff Girl 3-D stickers, but I’m guessing it’s my brain’s version of junk food. Still, some people find great ideas for free-gift-with-every-order-over-$50–those who plan ahead enough to check this surplus site ahead of time, or who have enough storage space for freight pallets of Christmas wrapping paper…. (Now you know where the stuff in dollar stores and on Ebay wholesale lots comes from.)

The first time I made my own portrait avatar, I used this fun little website to do it. I’m much cuter in person. (cough, cough.)

The Strongbad cartoon site was the very first site my daughter shared with me, when she was in middle school, and I’ve kept it bookmarked for sentimental purposes. Plus, I can’t get the memorable phrase “My blood hurts” (from one of the stories) out of my head.

Whenever anyone asks me a question about polymer clay, I refer them to the Glass Attic website. And a good place to see what people around the world are making with polymer clay, I check in with Cynthia Tinapple’s Polymer Clay Daily. Sometimes it’s lovely, sometimes it’s silly, sometimes it’s astonishing, but it’s all polymer clay.

Okay, should be able to get into some kind of trouble with all this. Be sure to send me some of your favorites. Because it’s Christmas, after all, and we have to do something after drinking all that rum-spiked eggnog tomorrow.

Merry Christmas, everyone!


Before I continue with my mini-series on jewelry display, I make this min-announcement:

I’ve been cyber-tagged!

I’m new at this, so bear with me.

My blog was recently “tagged” by Kerin Rose, who makes wonderful hand-carved sterling silver jewelry. I have to keep the tag going.

Here are the rules:

-link to your tagger and list these rules
-share 7 facts about yourself ( random or unusual are ok!)
-tag 7 folks at the end of your post by leaving their names and links to their blogs
-let them know they’ve been tagged by leaving a comment on their blog

Hmmmm….seven facts about myself:

1. I worry a lot & tend to over-think things. (Everyone who knows me is slapping their foreheads right about now and exclaiming, “Ya think??!!”)

2. I took up riding at the age of 52, after tearing my ACL (important tendon in your knee) for the second time while sparring in martial arts. (I now have….ahem….someone else’s ACL.)

3. I love techno/electronica/alternative rock.

4. I’m a sucker for good apology, and will forgive anyone almost anything if I get one.

5. I love chipotle chili powder in my hot chocolate.

6. If I could, I would have a lot more pets. One of the sweetest pets I ever had was a little black rat named Mavra.

7. I reread books I love every few years, like The Lord of the Rings, the Little House on the Prairie series, and the Dune series.

Okay, seven blogs I read and enjoy:

1. MeggieCat, not only the first blog I ever read, but one of the best. She finds wonderful things on the web for artists and craftspeople and shares them freely.

2. MeggieCat’s dad’s blog, Paulz Blog, aka “The Old Professor”… His posts are always good for a laugh, and they also make you think a little more.

3. Christine Kane’s blog, whose tagline, “Be Creative. Be Conscious. Be Courageous.” says it all….

4. Kathy Sierra doesn’t maintain her blog anymore (though you can follow her on Twitter), but you can still read her her old blog posts called “Creating Passionate Users.” It was high-tech stuff with amazing crossover for all creative people.

5. I’m probably the last person in the world who found Indexed, but maybe there’s someone who hasn’t discovered this gem yet.

6. The Crafted Webmaster is always a favorite, because Nicolette Tallmadge is someone who’s helped me into the 21st century re: using the internet to not only market my art, but to communicate with my audience and sell my work.

7. And because he is my constant and best companion, and has helped me every stop along the way, with good grace (usually) and heartfelt support, my darlin’ husband Jon Udell. It’s a hard blog for me to read–beyond my ken–but I know his vision for the internet, and his depth at understanding how it can help us work together to build great things, is astonishing.

Okay, on to the next thing!

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