Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Merry freakin' Christmas Santa!

Wouldn't you just love this job?! I think faces on the Santas are hilarious. My all time favorite is the last picture with the mom in it. Truly the most wonderful time of the year ;)

Thursday, December 09, 2010

Breast cancer awareness and a coupon!

Raise awareness for breast cancer with your choice of classy pieces from Tropical Blonde. 10% of each sale will be donated to breast cancer research! Group programs also available. If you have a breast cancer survivor in your life, you can place an order and instead of donating to research I will send your friend the donation as a show of your support! For sale in my shop today.

Use coupon code BLACKFRIDAY10 and you will receive a 10% discount as well as FREE shipping!

Wednesday, December 01, 2010

Outtakes of Christmas card picture shoot

When I finish the real one you'll see that too :) Despite appearences, no babies were injured in the making of these photos.

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Our tree has STD.

Standard Toddler Decorating: symptoms include the inability to have breakable ornaments below 4 feet and large clusters of decorations in two areas which here assigned to each child.

Holiday Sale Extension!

I have decided that since I didn't get all my Christmas shopping done over the weekend that you might not have either! Therefore, use the code BLACKFRIDAY10 in both Etsy shops to get 10% off your order plus FREE SHIPPING. I will be keeping this promotion going until December 14th! So check out


I will also honor the discount on any custom orders! If you have something particular in mind let me help you express yourself ;)

Thursday, November 25, 2010

Happy Thanksgiving!

We all have so much for which to be thankful! If you're reading this I know you can be thankful for Internet at least, right?! Most of all I am thankful for my family both blood relatives and spiritual brother and sisters :) And this year we have another family that is specifically thankful for my brother Ben! Check out this link to a news spot about a couple he helped save in South Carolina:

He's 6'6" diver you see in the video and he was the first guy to be in the water!

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Holiday Sale beginning Black Friday

I will be having a sale of 10% off everything in both of my shops as well as FREE SHIPPING on all orders! Shipping will be refunded via Paypal/credit/debit card. Check out Tropical Blonde for my creations and Tropical Blonde Supplies for DIY jewelry supplies. Be sure to check out the Kits section for great, affordable gift ideas! Some of the color schemes for sale are shown above. On Etsy you also have the "Commit to buy" option that is NOT actual payment so if you want to reserve yourself some items before the rush on Friday you can go shopping now and come back on Friday to pay and get the sale. Get started now!

Monday, November 22, 2010

Winner, winner, how to fix the chicken for dinner!

The title reminds me I need to figure out what's for dinner over here :)

More importantly...COURTNEY BREUL....come on down!! Courtney won the rainbow from my Early Christmas giveaway! Courtney just had surgery on her back so hopefully the rainbow can brighten her days while she recovers. Thank you to everyone who entered! Stay tuned for details on my Holiday sale for Black Friday.

Saturday, November 20, 2010

Most recent experiment...Alcohol inks.

Love the way these turned out. Now to decide do I sell them as is or make a finished piece? What do you think?

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Featured EtsyBlogger (November)

Meet Devine Designs Jewelry! She blogs here and is also on Facebook. Check out her store to see some impressive wirework. This brooch is gorgeous!

Don't forget to enter HERE to win beads of every color.

Blog carnival (November)

What is always inspiring you for your shops, your works, or anything in your life?

I think I'd have to say that fashion is what inspires me the most on a consistent basis. I am always finding shirts and jackets in my closet that inspire pieces. I love the Pantone color report and playing with combinations of upcoming seasonal trends. Most of all I like wearing my creations and being asked "where did you get that?!".

What is your go to inspiration?

Don't forget to ENTER HERE to win free beads or a egift card!

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Merry early Christmas to me...and YOU!

I have a part time job in women's fashion retail and we had our holiday meeting this weekend. I won a drawing for this display that we are no longer going to be using in our store. I couldn't take it's picture all at once because it is slightly taller that I am and my studio isn't big enough for me to get far enough away! But I love being able to "shop" so easily now in my own stash :)

I'm so happy I could just...GIVE AWAY SOME BEADS!! I will draw a winner on Monday morning the 22nd of November. The winner will receive one strand of beads of every color in the rainbow (6 strands in all). US residents only for the beads but if you live abroad you can still enter! Overseas participants will receive a $5 egiftcard to Amazon.

Entries: Please leave individual comments for each so I don't miss your extra entries!
Comment on this post.
Follow me! (See side bar)
Blog about this post and link to me.
Tweet about it including @kategardenghi
Tell your friends on Facebook and link to this post.

That's 5 entries in all. Have fun!

Friday, November 12, 2010

It goes so fast...

Savor your time with loved ones this weekend! There's no better time then the present to do so.

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Fun day already!

It's not even lunch time yet and it's already a great day :). Isaac is out of school in honor of our esteemed Veterans. We are having steady snow so it's a cozy, cuddly day of books, beads and clay for all of us. Yup, my rough and tumble hooligans like to bead too! They love to get into the clay if I let them.

Anyway, Dave at Rings & Things sent me an email this morning. I am officially a Blog Partner! Woot woot! Thanks, Dave! I am super excited to be involved with such a great group. Look for their logo in the side bar and check out the site. You'll find something you can't live without, I'm sure of it. They also have a blog with great information and fun stuff.

In, other beady news...I will be posting a new product in the next few days *hopefully* that will be a great gift for the holidays that are barreling down on us! Stay tuned.

Special words of thanks to all those who have served or are serving in our armed forces. We are honored that you have or would pay the ultimate price to keep us free. Thank you.

Thursday, November 04, 2010

LOVED this! Try to assume people meant well :)

Click on image for a larger version

Monday, November 01, 2010

Last Cup of Bead Soup

Lori has posted her last installment of October's Cup of Bead Soup. She did some amazingly simple and fabulous looking pieces that showcase my work. I can't tell you how fun this has been to do. Having someone as accomplished and well known as Lori working with my pieces has been such an encouragement in the jewelry/blogging world. Thanks Lori!

3 little monkeys

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Fall Favorites

I have put up some of my favorite pieces in my Etsy jewelry shop. I love to wear them, especially at this time of year! They mix so well with the fall palette. Check them out! I also added the Etsy Mini in the side bar for my Tropical Blonde Supplies store on Etsy. There are some great charms up now and I will be adding more as I have spare seconds so keep checking :)

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

We made cookies but I don't have pictures.

Paul requested that I take photos through out the process of making chocolate chip cookies with the boys the other day. Ha! Picture this...a 4 year old and 2 year old, a KitchenAid, and the ingredients for cookies, 2 chairs for standing on an a 1 month old baby that doesn't want to be left out. I was just glad to get the dough made before lunch and not having to bathe all the kids was a BONUS! If a camera had been involve it probably would have ended up in the oven. As it was we made a double batch of cookies with one batch worth of sugar :P But since I always up the measurement of chocolate chips, the dough is really more of a filler to keep the chips together and you almost can't tell :) Paul says they are the best cookies ever because "We made them ourselves, Daddy!".

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Door knobs of Hades (part 3)

Catch up with part 1 and and part 2 here.

Paul arrives home and decides to tackle the problem. Within minutes of trying to solve the problem from the hall side of the door he decides that it does indeed look like the inside of the room is most likely going to be the place to solve the issue. Now, keep in mind that while Paul is a geek by nature and profession, he's built like a line backer. About 6 foot 5 inches of huge man fitting thru a 23inX16in window. Let me try to give you a visual.
We got him...
...in there...(that center white space).

Yeah. When he righted himself from climbing through the window and doing a handstand on the chair I placed under the window he said "Well, if we can't get it open I'll be sleeping in here tonight because there is NO WAY I will be going out the way I came in". Seriously, people, it was like an SNL skit up in here.

No worries, though, the story ends well. He couldn't get the locking mechanism to work from that side either (I felt a little good about that) and ended up just hammering it out of the door all together. Fixed the problem, right? Nope. Still shut tighter than...(insert your own simile here because I can only think of inappropriate ones). So it all finally came down to him inserting tools in various strategic spots in the hinges and hammering a lot. Who'da thought?

See you at Hope Depot this weekend...we'll be in the fixtures section.

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Door knobs of Hades (part 2)

If you missed my recount of Tuesday morning's mishap check out Part 1.

The rest of the morning went well. I even got a chance to catch up on some work and do a little clay work in my bead room/office. As I was getting ready to leave to go pick up Isaac from school I exited the office and shut the door (to prevent little fingers from poking my clay). I get back from school and discover the door won't open! No amount of handle jiggling, pushing, kicking and body slamming will budge this sucker. Now, you're thinking, she just took off the bathroom knob..."GO GET A SCREWDRIVER BLONDIE!". Uh, yeah...there are NO screws on the hall side of the door. Oh, and that metal piece that you are supposed to be able to trip with a credit card, paint scraper etc is also on the other side! Now what?!

Fast forward to lunchtime. My Mom stops in for lunch and have this great idea that while she can watch the boys for a few minutes I can get into the room via the window and open it from the other side. Simple right? WRONG! It won't open from that side either. So off comes the knob. Still nothing. The locking mechanism appears to have somehow broken in the closed position. No biggie...this resourceful one decides to take off the hinges. No go. Seriously. The pins come out just fine but the hinges won't separate! By now Nana has to get back to work, so it's back out the window for me and wait til the Hubs gets home from work.

Catch part 3 to hear how that went...complete with a couple photos for reference :)

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Door knobs of Hades (part 1)

The day (yesterday) began innocently enough. Everyone was dressed and fed and it looked like we were going to make it to preschool right on time. Then Jason locked himself in the bathroom. On purpose. He knows how to operate the door and he also knows he's not allowed to lock it but since when has that stopped any 2 year old you know? And here I thought I was going to miss the whole locking ones self in the bathroom thing since I DON'T HAVE TEENAGE GIRLS! Right. Fortunately, we did make it on time after Jason decided unlocking the door was the wise choice because he really wasn't sure if Mom would leave without him ;) I came home and promptly switched the door knob around so it only locks from the outside until we replace it with something more suitable. Little did I know that this door knob incident was NOTHING compared to what happened that afternoon...stay tuned...it's a doozy.

Monday, October 18, 2010

Change for the better :)

As Halloween gets closer I have made some little changes to the charms I have for sale in my Etsy shop for supplies . You get 5 Halloween charms for $4. I do have multiple quantities of some styles so if there's one you're not in love with you can send me a conversation and I can substitute if it's available. Check them out!

Saturday, October 16, 2010

October's Featured Etsy Blogger

Introducing Margaret of Splendid Little Stars! She likes all kinds of stuff including gardening and food among many artistic pursuits like photography and keeping up these two adorable Etsy Shops:

Head over there to see some adorable children's items and lovely earrings!

Thursday, October 14, 2010

October Etsyblogger Carnival

The Etsy Bloggers have 2 monthly topics for team members to choose and post about.

The topic I chose for this month is:

"Halloween is just around the corner. What is the best Halloween costume you've ever worn or designed for someone else to wear? What made it so special?"

I think my most memorable costume was the year I dressed as Cleopatra. I was probably 12 and the reason it was special was because we lived in Australia at the time and we were back in the USA visiting my grand parents. It was the last time I saw my grandfather (on my mother's side) before he passed away.

Do you have a special costume you wore or designed for someone?

Not so small blessings

Having a three week old baby and being able to make other people eyes think you have a figure that doesn't look 200 pounds (I don't weigh quite that much I am ecstatic to say, but I'm pretty close). Illusion is my friend!

Monday, October 11, 2010

Lori's bead soup designs.

Lori Anderson has put up her first pieces of jewelry featuring my beads! The jewelry is awesome, I have to say, and it's SO cool to see your own work incorporated into another's designs. While several of my beads are available here I deliberately did NOT add the designs that I sent Lori because I wanted her to be able to have a special claim to using them first. Now that she has I will be offering those styles to everyone in a special offer here on my blog. The beads will be $1 each (any style) and free shipping on any orders in the USA. So, leave a comment here and let me know what style and quantity you are interested in (no personal info here though, please, email me at kate.tropicalblonde@gmail.com with your shipping address). If you would like to use another form of payment other than Paypal just include that in your email and we'll work it out!

Wednesday, October 06, 2010

October charms!

I have opened my second Etsy shop! I am in the process of continuing to upload items but there are a couple in particular that pertain to October. First, a breast cancer awareness clasp! Super cute...check it out. The other is a variety of Halloween charms. Each charm is lead free pewter and at only $1 each it's a great gift idea as well as seasonal supply. There are plenty to go around so if someone has snapped up something just convo me on Etsy or email me at kate dot tropicalblonde at gmail dot com. Let me know which item and how many you'd like!

Friday, October 01, 2010

Cup of Bead Soup.

I am honored to say that Lori Anderson is featuring my beads in her Cup of Bead Soup challenge for the month of October. Check out her introductory post for the month! Her logo will be up all month in the side bar so you can keep up with her designs. I can't wait to see what she comes up with!

Wednesday, September 29, 2010


First time I caught his eyes open :)

Monday, September 27, 2010

Declyn Paul

9 lb 8oz. 20 3/4 inches long. Born 3:37am 9/27/2010.

Monday, September 20, 2010

So fun.

My coworkers threw a dinner/shower for me last night and it was a blast. I am so blessed to work with such a great group of women. I'll be organizing the gifts and taking more pics to share a little later. I have been having some low key contractions all weekend and there are a few other things i want to get done first :)

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Celebratory SALE.

I just reformulated my shipping policy! A celebratory SALE will be going on until midnight (MST) tomorrow (Wednesday). 10% off your entire order! Check it out at Tropical Blonde on Etsy.

Almost there...

I have 11 days until my due date. Last weekend the hubs took some pics and here are a few favorites.

It's hard to tell but this is one hand from both big brothers :)

Monday, September 13, 2010

I have a logo!

My "little" brother Geoff Tice is an artist (and 6'6" tall hence the quotes around the little part). He made a logo for Tropical Blonde. I LOVE it! If you are interested in having your own logo go to geofftice.com and tell him I sent you ;)

Friday, September 10, 2010

2 weeks left!

Exactly 2 weeks before Declyn is due to make his appearance and we decided to move the boys from their room upstairs to what we use as the playroom in the basement and combine the chaos into one walled off location. Isaac had school for the first little bit of it but Jason loved helping Daddy! Have a great weekend!

Wednesday, September 08, 2010

Sort, sort and sort again.

I mentioned I that I was able to purchase the remaining inventory of a local bead store at a fantastic price. Lots of stuff was mixed together in types (pewter charms for example). For my new store I am sorting them into more specific groups and trying like mad to take photos! Here a little bit of my progress. I have started now on all the German vintage glass :) Hopefully we'll have some pics of that soon because I think I have found a new love!

Friday, September 03, 2010

It's going to be an entertaining year.

Isaac's preschool teacher met me at the door this morning to tell me a funny story (we've had several so far but this one's great). The new speech therapist that helps out in the class from time to time came to visit yesterday for the first time this year. She plays with the kids and generally gets to know them during the course of the day/year and yesterday she and Isaac were playing in the "kitchen" when he turned to her and said "You look like the Hulk!" (she's pretty tall;). Now, has Isaac ever watched the Hulk movie? No. Read a comic book about Hulk? No. But there it is. Of course the first thing I asked was "did she understand what he said?". Oh yes, not just understood him but apparently the rest of the conversation went like this...

Therapist: "Am I green like the Hulk?"
Isaac: "No, but you still look like him."
Th: "Do I have black hair like the Hulk?"
I: "No, but you still look like him!"

And on it went....now when the director says the therapist is coming the preschool assistants say "Oh, don't you mean the Hulk?" :) Hooboy. Have a great Labor Day weekend!

Thursday, September 02, 2010

Working on a "surprise".

I AM still here! Isaac started preschool "full time" (the beginning of the year had shortened sessions and half class sizes). He's LOVING it. His teacher is too apparently. According to her he is "totally uninhibited and completely well adjusted". So that's great!

The BIG news:*I was able to purchase the remains of a bead store inventory over the weekend*

Between sorting, taking photos, walking Isaac to and from school while being 3 weeks away from delivering this baby, the blog is going to fall behind a little as you can see :) Don't leave me, though, ok? I hope to have a new shop up by the beginning of next week and we'll have a celebratory opening sale, I promise!

Thursday, August 26, 2010


Pink enameled toggle clasp.

12 gauge copper clasp.

Snap clasp open

Snap clasp closed

Handmade copper clasp, aligned to lay flat on the neck/wrist.

As promised, clasps that might make it into my new store. Which is your fav?!