Welcome to the Boonies, little out of the way places and beads along the way.

I am going to use this space to talk about the fine art of finding and then relocating beads. Sounds a bit ridiculous when you think of all the things going on in this world - I'm sure - but they need to find new homes somewhere, rather than bouncing around the USA with me and Steve.


How to make a great portable beading dish

We are going camping this summer and I AM TAKING MY BEADS WITH ME!!!! So I needed a portable surface for seed beads – my favorite, where they wouldn’t roll around as I was beading and it had to be  small – we bought a 15′ Fun Finder (another whole story) so not a lot of space to use. Here’s my idea. Have a peyote bead class in a week or so and going to supply one to each student – let them test drive them. Here’s some photos to show how I made them. Save some plastic lids (margarine, sour cream, etc) the size you want;  get a few scraps of a nappy fabric (something light weight with a little texture like corduroy or a velour blanket or light weight upholstery fabric; then…

Trace around the lid with a marker on the back side of your napped fabric.

Trace around the lid with a marker on the back side of your napped fabric.

Cut out with pink shears (preferred) or regular scissors

Cut out with pink shears (preferred) or regular scissors

Coat the inside of the lid with rubber cement - be sure to coat up the sides, too.

Coat the inside of the lid with rubber cement – be sure to coat up the sides, too.

Coat the wrong side (un napped) of the fabric, let both pieces dry.

Coat the wrong side (un-napped) of the fabric, let both pieces dry.

Press into lid, glued sides together.

Press into lid, glued sides together.

Rub from center out to edges of the lid

Rub from center out to edges of the lid

Press into edges well.

Press into edges well.

Trim any excess.

Trim any excess.

Let dry well and  Happy beading

Let dry well and Happy beading

What's great, you can fold it to use as a funnel;putting beads back into containers

What’s great, you can fold it to use as a funnel;putting beads back into containers

I found a very odd plastic square at the thrift store  for my traveling/camping tray.  Lighter fabric is better - hard to see the dark beads on this one.

I found a very odd plastic square at the thrift store for my traveling/camping tray. Lighter fabric is better – hard to see the dark beads on this one.


TorC is like life and . . . as Forest said … “a box of chocolates.”

…you never know what you are gonna see. I swear – I find something to smile or grin at every time we go out in this town – even the ride to WalMart is fun! Today we needed to get diesel – the price fell again so Steve was ready to pump and buy some – and afterwards we took a few turns off the main road. Am trying to take my camera – as I have a mental list of “next time we drive by here I’m gonna get a picture of THAT.
THE purple/maybe lavender and very very yellow house - down by the "rivah".

The purple and yellow house is one of those on the mental list – but before we passed it today – I saw a whole new treasure   Across from the RiverBend Hotsprings there are usually RVs parked – but today several sites were empty and WOW – there was this wall

THE wall.

THE wall.

Had to stop and get some close-ups of TorC’s “cave art”.



Alive and well – still in New Mexico

Been awhile since I tried to write. – got thru last summer – that’s my biggest block – Steve spent a lot of time in the VA hospital in Alburquerque. And we managed to get thru a workamping job at the Turquoise Trail Campground  – outside of ABQ in the Sandia mountains – through the good graces of a very understanding campground owner.  Was the first time we took a workamping job and – could not really come through – due to health.  So we are re-thinking our retirement career. 

It’s rough because we would still like to work – just can’t work like we used to – and the more sitting we do – the worse the problem gets.

So we are spending the summer here in Tor C, helping out in a park on weekends , trying to save money by not using up diesel trekking to a summer job.  In the meantime – have just really found myself enjoying the sights of this little town  and of course – beading!  Here’s a few photos – it’s an odd and definitely colorful little old town.


TorC, New Mexico, colors

TorC, New Mexico, colors

Enjoying our stay in Truth or Consequences –

The Ride to Chloride

Looking east toward the Rio Grande from Hwy 52 , coming back from Chloride

February 20-2012 – great day for a ramble with a sandwich from Subway for lunch and hunt for ghost towns.  Headed for Chloride, north and west of us – about 100 miles round trip from Truth or Consequences.


—- OOOPS, did I say , we made it to NewMexico?  Got here first of the month after a whirlwind, one night layover in Albuqerque.  Scoped out where the VA hospital is and how to get there if and when we need to. Now we are spending a month or so  150 miles south in TorC (short for Truth or Consequences), on the Rio Grande, next to the elephant Butte Reservoir.  I know the town changed its name from Hot Springs with the help of TV show host Ralph Edwards – have not heard yet why they chose that name – but I think it did what they were hoping and got them a bit more noticed on the map.   Now back to…

First sky in New Mexico



It was about 100 miles round trip, winding up into the mountains, north and west of us – that we see from town on the horizon – toward the Gila Wilderness Area. Went through several dusty little towns that saw boom times around the turn of the centry when silver mining put most of them on the map. Some of them had been on the map a lot longer from days of Mexico ownership when it was mostly ranching and farming and before that mostly roaming by the original hunter/gatherers – the Apache Indians.

But the end of the road in Chloride was a real treasure – 11 full-time residents, expanding to 13 that very day – 2 new people moving in! Here’s a few photos from the day …

Beautiful old adobe wall and gate in Monticello - originally built to fight the Apaches.

Getting ready to say, “Adios, Amarillo.”`

Seems like we just got here,  and have been too busy with holidays to do any noting here – so trying to catch up before we leave. 

Here is flashback number 1….

November 21

Monday, Amarillo, TX,   a rainy drizzly day like one we haven’t seen for several moons here in West Texas. 

We are exploring some new territory – parked just west of Amarillo on I-40, Oasis RV Park (exit 60, south side of the interstate), Steve working for our site, we are hoping to spend the winter, but the winds of Amarillo may chase us away.  Not too bad so far, couple of bumpy days, blowing 15-25, gusting 30 to 35, doesn’t sound like much but it really bounces in the 5th wheel.  So far the wifi is wiffy but holding up – moved a bit closer to the office/restaurant and it’s good most days for a week or so.  The park is very big – 192 sites – newer park, all paved and living up to my friend Pat’s description of Amarillo, “ Nothing between you and the North Pole, but a barbed wire fence.”

"Nothing between Amarillo and the North Pole, but a barbed wire fence."

  We are looking for a winter home, a place to come to after working the mountains for the summer, where we can get our Dr and Rx check-ups done, (Steve’s needs a VA facility  / haven’t figured out what mine needs  yet – !!!!##**&^$$#!!).

Today starts, Steve’s 2nd 3 day weekend – so we headed out to get shopping done for Thanksgiving, then do a little retail research – and for me that means – hmmm, “Wonder if there are any bead shops in Amarillo??”  Fun day today, found two and one sell’s radio controlled helicopters!!  That means Steve didn’t want to sit in the truck while I went inside for awhile.    And one is owned by a woman, (I think her name is Gwen – forgive me  if it is Marcia, didn’t make a very good notes – as I was too excited about finding such wonderfulbeads ) who collects African Art and beads – ohm am so in trouble here. But I have shipped two items from BoonieBeads since we arrived Amarillo – one to Maine, and today one to Seattle – so I am celebrating a bit and found a very nice bead shop to to it.  

Gwen from The Beadz Shop in Amarillo, where I found the treasure trove of African trade beadsSome of Gwen's collection of African art in the back of her shop

BEADZ SHOP  in the Puckett Plaza Mall on Bell St. – 806-463-2323 – very nice – not a lot of seed beads – but West Texas is not into those (found that out in Big Spring)  but really  nice selection of African trade beads,  small – but classy –  findings section.  Here are a few photos from the day.   

  And a new piece for me a new necklace for the shop.  

 Have wanted to try to learn the spiral peyote stitch and here is my first attempt – tore this apart several times before it got to a stage I could live with.  Have kept it to myself since Thanksgiving – but am going to list it with Etsy today so mayhaps it will find a new spacein the world.

Spiral peyote stitch necklace with African trade beads we found at THE BEADZ SHOP in Amarillo.

The West Texas 25

A herd of BoonieBeads to help the herd in Alpine

I’ve been following a local news story in West Texas for about a month now. It centered around a stock yard in Presidio,Texas,  on the border in Big Bend country and a stopping point for animals headed to slaughter in Mexico.   Not a good story to begin with – involving about 300 horses, some winding up dead in a creek nearby.  As details came out and the law stepped in most of the horses were sorted out – as to ownership – and I guess sent on their way to slaughter. However 25 couldn’t have ownership determined and they wound up in a county sheriff’s control.

It sounds to me like the sheriff was trying to treat the horses humanely – however it was an uphill battle for him due to the condition they were in when he received them – many of them  emaciated, starved and dying. 

Auction tags on horses headed for slaughter.

When you see the photos, it only makes you wonder where do these animals come from and how did they wind up in this conditon. Their eyes, do a lot of talking, but unfortunately and maybe it’s for the best – I’ll never know the details of those tales. But that’s where Rachel Waller Rondeaux comes in. She is the photographer I wrote about back in May and she lives, not far from where this story began. Rachel’s photography, many friends and their postings on Facebook led to  an amazing rescue of these horses.

Rachel's Welcome for the survivors

Last week the survivors, were moved to Rachel’s ranch where they are getting food, medical attention and a second chance for a home. When they are ready they will be available for adoption. Several of them did not make it to Rachel’s ranch.

 And it’s a tremendous job she’s taken on – feeding that many horses in drought stricken West Texas is a very expensive propostion.   The story made the news in the Midland/Big Srping area on channel 9 – here is a link to their coverage.     And the survivors have their own Facebook page  where you can get more information about contributing to their care and adoption. There are some beautiful animals in the herd,  I do hope they can rest easy now.

If I could I’d take them all in – but I’ve never seen a 5th wheel with a herd of horses following it – at least not in this life – so here’s a herd even I can handle and I’m donating the sales price on this herd to Rachel’s herd.

My tribute to the West Texas 25