Wordless Wednesday: Architecture

Photo: Candice Mizell

Photo: Candice Mizell


this day in crime history: july 21, 1873

There’s something about the Old West and train-robbers that I love. Perhaps I was affiliated somehow in a past life.

Nobody Move!


On this date in 1873, a group of western bank robbers known as the James-Younger gang tried their hand at train robbery.  The gang sabotaged the track just outside Adair, IA and waited for the Chicago Rock Island & Pacific train’s approach.  Around 7:00 PM, the locomotive derailed, killing the engineer.

Some of the robbers hit the express car while the rest guarded the train’s passengers and crew.  The gang believed that the train would be carrying tens of thousands of dollars in gold.  As it turns out, they were mistaken.  They left the scene about ten minutes later with a few thousand in cash.

Some have referred to the 1873 Rock Island &Pacific robbery as the first peace-time train robbery in US history, but this is incorrect.  The Reno gang beat the James-Youngers to it, robbing an Ohio and Mississippi train in Seymour, IN in 1866.

Further reading:


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Messy Monday: Dollarbead.com

Welcome to Messy Monday!

If you’re a creative type, we’re looking for you! Become a contributor to Messy Monday and show us your crafty side. Message me or email me here to request an add to the contributor list.

*Messy Monday is intended as a nod toward all things creative and messy. Recipes, crafts, art projects, remodeling projects, DIY—whatever soothes the crafting spirit.

Today I’d like to focus on beads and jewelry making. I’m a bead collector and occasional designer (novice though I am). I scour sales racks and clearance aisles at various stores, gathering the bits and bobs that catch my eye.

Recently I found www.dollarbead.com and thought I’d share my experience.

A sample of my haul from dollarbead.com

A sample of my haul from dollarbead.com

At dollarbead.com I managed to find  a variety of beads, jump rings, and even these cute little coffee cup charms. (Squee! I love coffee!!)

Coffee charms? Yes, I do believe I will!

Coffee charms? Yes, I do believe I will!

Dollarbead.com offers a wide variety of inexpensive beads (some less than a dollar per string/bag), as well as a selection of findings and doodads that will have you filling that virtual shopping cart with one of each.

Here are a few more reasons why I’d recommend shopping this site:

– The website is relatively easy to navigate.

– The delivery is fast and the shipping is reasonably priced (flat rate, so you may as well place a big order).

– The site offers a refund or replace with similar item option in the event of out of stock items.

Are you a bead-o-holic? Where’s your favorite place to procure your jewelry making necessities? Tell me. I neeeed to know!


Happy beading!



At the Library

I don’t visit the library as often as I once did–work tends to prevent or postpone a lot of things we’d rather do, wouldn’t you say? This past Saturday, however, my son woke before the alarm he’d set and we headed to the library. (I must admit that it’s difficult for us to make it to the library on Saturdays because I want nothing more than to be lazy and drink coffee until noon on the weekends. So, since the library in our little town closes at noon on Saturday, I’m sure you can see where the problem lies.)


Reading: It's never too early or too late.

Reading: It’s never too early or too late.

At any rate, we made it. My son is more of a gamer than a reader, so of course he dives straight into the computer station. My daughter loves books just as much as I do– and I’m giddy about it!– so I sit and watch as she scours the aisles full of colorful covers. I can’t help but wonder about the history of the stacks. How long have these books been shelved? When was the last time a reader checked the lonely looking volumes out? I imagine each book as an individual personality, each clambering for attention as my daughter passes, much like a lively farmer’s market where vendors exercise no shame in yelling about their meager offerings. If these books had arms, would they reach out and pluck at the fabric of her shirt? How would their voices sound if they could talk? Would the YA mystery novel call out in a cool, gravelly voice, accompanied by Psst and Hey, kid!? Would the fantasy novel release butterflies and fairy giggles while a sleeping dragon blinks awake in the background?

Meanwhile, my son is oblivious to the magic of books as he tap-tap-taps on the keyboard. I suppose he’s finding magic of his own in the gamer world, but I just can’t relate to that vision as easily. I’ve pushed books on him enough that he’s started coming around a bit, and I know that one day he’ll actually sit down to read a book by choice. I wonder with which voice that book will call out to him?

Which Fantasy World Do You Live In?

I’m on a fantasy kick lately, but it’s not just any fantasy. Fantasy from my childhood, the stuff I grew up on. Stories like The Wizard of Oz and Alice in Wonderland, movies like Legend and Labyrinth. (BTW, with all the remakes of olden classics like Oz and Wonderland, I wonder how long it will be before someone makes over Legend and Labyrinth?)

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Jim Henson’s Labyrinth

So, my latest brain buzz makes me wonder: which fantasy world do you live in? Which magical land raised you and opened your eyes to the mysteries and delights of fantasy literature and the capabilities of imagination?

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Disney’s Alice in Wonderland

Tell me. Perhaps there are some I have never experienced.