November 18, 2009

Silver Bella Part I-The People (A Ridiculously Long Tale About Women that Sparkle)

This is probably my favorite picture from the trip and it's not even mine! Thanks Hope! This is from the first full day in Omaha, part of which was spent at this huge antique mall. I don't believe anyone walked out empty handed. I know Cammy, Kelli and I didn't.

This is the fabulous Hope Wallace Karney. She has magical powers and can get anyone to do anything. I'm not quite sure how she does it but I sure admire her for it. Plus she's very giving herself, which I'm sure doesn't hurt!

This is me and Meg Duerksen from the blog Whatever. We didn't have any classes together but how fun that we got to meet.

This is me and Kaari Meng from French General. I took 2 of her classes. I was only scheduled for one but I loved her, her classes and jewelery making so much that I paid for a 6th class just to be with her. I fancy myself a bit of a teacher's pet. Of course if you ask her about it she will say Jen who? But that's just to throw you off so you don't know she's playing favorites. Kaari is responsible for taking 87% of my money over the week and for my family eating mac and cheese from a box until the next payday. But to be honest I LOVE jewelery making and would rather play with beads than eat and in her defense, she wouldn't allow me to spend my last $40 on some awesome European jewelry tools. And can I just say that her assistant Dawn was hands down the best classroom assistant ever? Oh there I go again sucking up. I can't help myself.

Here's me and Cammy and Kelli. The 3 of us roomed together this year and had most of our classes together. Let me just say there were many nights of very little sleep (a total of only 6 hours in 2 nights at this point) and it shows on my face. Enlarge at your own risk. This was in the evening right before the Market opened and we got to shop til we dropped. The theme this year was aprons, thank God, because aprons are much less embarrassing than vintage prom dresses.

This is me and the extra fabulous Shelly Kennedy of Drooz Studio fame. Y'all, I don't even know why she talks to me. She is so awesome and talented and sweet and gorgeous and I could go on and on. I'm so happy that I got to meet her.

Here are the 3 amigos again at the luncheon. Our key note speaker was Jo Packham (Where Women Create) and she was fabulous. And Inspiring. And I could have listened to her speak all afternoon. I would have skipped my next class just to listen to her. What a lady!

This is me and my buddy Melissa Danner. What do I say about her? I'm so happy we finally had a class together. She is one of a kind (in a good way) and wonderful and funny and real and cool (even if her teenage daughter doesn't realize it) and I'm so happy that I know her and that she only lives a few hours away and that she's already planning to come see me. That's a lot of ands I know but that was me controlling myself.

There were other amazing women I spent time with that I don't have pictures of like my new Silver Bella Momma Carol and her sister Elizabeth the wonderful, talented and sweet as can be Michelle Geller, the always fun sidekicks Lisa and Karlene, the lovely Kari Ramstrom known to most of you as Artsy Mama. Oh and Jeanne from Bushel and a Peck, what a sweetheart she is. So real, so sweet, so stinkin adorable, so talented. I just know I'm leaving people out but I'm still in a fog from it all.

I just want to leave you with one last comment about the wonderful women at this event. I have never in my life been around women who are so generous, encouraging, talented and warm. I've never been hugged so much as I was in those 5 days and I loved every moment of it. My hug tank is full. That feeling of being a part of something and being surrounded by people that get you is what keeps people coming back to Silver Bella every year. I will miss all of these women but even more, I will miss that feeling of community.


  1. What a good way to phrase it, my tank is full too!

  2. Jen,
    you have such a way with words! It was amazing wasn't it? What a time we had! My tank is full full full!


  3. i was so tickled just now as i opend my google reader & saw your post at the top....about silverbella!! yay!!
    lucky you
    you got to hang with some of the people i have admired from afar!
    i can't wait to hear more
    but you just take your sweet little time
    no hurry
    no pressure at all from me

  4. 1. You've got me all goosebumped up here and I don't appreciate it one bit. I'm already donning the green robe AND the burrito blanket - and still - goosebumps!

    2. I spy one very fetching belt in one of the pics!

    3. I kid you not - I bought the EXACT same pinstriped shirt LAST NIGHT at TJ Maxx...I mean Anthro. ;) Holy cheapness! I am in love with it. But seriously - it took me 25 minutes just to unbutton all of those dang buttons!

  5. I heard several people talking about "Silver Bella" on their blogs recently. Can you tell me what it is? It sounded really fun and interesting but I can't figure out exactly what it is :) Thanks.

  6. i'm hearing so much about this event and am so glad you posted some pics :) what an amazing opportunity and it sounds like you learned a lot! :)

    thanks for sharing and i am glad you had so much fun :) :)

  7. Jen,
    You said it all so well. It was an incredible experience and I can't wait to go back. I feel like I am still in a lovely bubble of joy.

    Thanks for the lovely memories!

  8. It looks like you had so much fun! I would LOVE to attend something like that. I had never heard of Silver Bella before I saw it on these blogs. Where can I find out more about it? My favorite part was "Enlarge at your own risk.." Too funny! What was your favorite class that you attended? I can't wait to hear more! -April

  9. Jen,
    It looks like it was the most amazing, inspiring event! I would have LOVED to take a French General class & hear Jo Packham! I can't wait to hear all about your projects. And, do tell, what did you bring home from the antique store??

  10. To my lovely new daughter, Jen,
    Yes, Dear, you do go on and on.... You've put to post a most accurate and tantalizing round up of the Bella events. Would love to have been able to stretch that last bit of hilarious evening into a longer time. What a refreshing delight you are, my Bella Daughter.

  11. so jealous that you got to meet kari...i would have spent all my money on her also;-)

  12. Oh my goodness what an incredible time you had! Thank you so much for sharing it all with us... one day i would love to attend,

  13. sooooo much fun!!! not enough time, but we wouldn't want to spend one more minute away from home, they should have Silver Bella Family camps. :-) Thank you for sharing some of your time with me.

    I feel like JO .....when I am behind my blog, I am super confident, but you put me in a room with these women and I can barely cross it to hug somebody who feels, online like a sister.........weird, but such a worthwhile, inspiring and bonding experience. I am thankful to know you.

  14. Sounds like an amazing time, Jen...and the classes sound fabulous!
    BTW....I am major coveting your little studio you have posted up at the top of your page! Is that color Robin Egg I spy?

  15. Yep, filled to the top and overflowing!

  16. What a great recap of your time away! I'm so jealous in a good old fashioned wholesome way!

  17. i loved meeting you jen! i wish we'd have had a class together. bummer.
    it was great weekend!

  18. I feel danger looming as I now have a huge list of new (to me) blogs to go visit. Hopefully my people don't mind an absence of dinner and clean laundry for a while as I check it all out.

  19. What a fabulous time you all had! Thanks for sharing the pics Jen & Thank you for your sweet comment regarding "Lab Love" ... he is arriving this weekend ♥

  20. It was certainly interesting for me to read this blog. Thank you for it. I like such topics and anything connected to this matter. I definitely want to read a bit more soon.

  21. Great recap post! I have a pile of stuff gathering to send off to you next week!
    I really was happy to get to know you better this year! xo hope

  22. Well...It sounds like a gosh darn ball. Such talent and creativity in one spot...The shine must have been unreal!

  23. ahhhh awesome photos of adorable you and your friends! I know you must have had a ball and I'm so glad you did! Thank you for sharing with us... and I hope you have a very Happy Thanksgiving!


  24. It was amazing wasn't it? What a time we had! My tank is full full full!

    Work From Home


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