Pulling apart, cleaning and re-using

The past few weeks, I’ve been buying a lot of jewelry materials on sale, which of course is fine. I save money, and get new pieces to play with, thus having the opportunity to create new jewelry. After receiving one of two packages I was waiting for yesterday though, I started thinking about my goals with this hobby, and it actually made me kind of sad. Originally, I wanted to recycle old jewelry, and only buy new materials when needed. I’ve gotten off my path, and although I will of course keep buying new beads and stuff, I also want to go back to my original idea!

So I grabbed my boxes containing old jewelry I’ve been buying in second hand shops and at flea markets, and started pulling them apart, trying to get a good idea of what I actually had to work with. It took me 3 hours to pull an old necklace apart, and clean every piece afterwards. But it was worth it! My fingers and arms hurt from pulling and cleaning, but the beads and metal pieces look almost like new, and I can use many of them in new projects.

Today, my other package came, which was mainly waxed cord in various colors, which I need anyway, no matter whether I buy new beads or not. But after being happy about my new stuff, I went back to my boxes of old bling. A lot of chains were repaired today, more pieces pulled apart, and of course everything has been cleaned. I also cleaned out some old and broken stuff, which I wasn’t sure I’d ever get to use. Cleaning up feels so good, and now I know exactly what I have lying around, and everything is sparkling and ready to use.

To be honest, I think my laziness was the main factor for getting off my path. It’s so easy to walk into a second hand shop, look at their old jewelry, and decide what can be used. But coming home, all tired from the day, not having the energy to pull apart and clean what has been bought, lead me to just put it in a box, and partly forget about it. It’s a pity though, as many of the pieces are prettier than what can be bought new, after spending some time repairing and cleaning them.

Back to the idea of recycling though. My main reason to do it is not because parts are cheaper to buy, as the time I spend disassembling, repairing and cleaning them kind of outweighs it. No, I simply want what nobody else can get, and thus create unique jewelry. That old necklace I pulled apart yesterday can’t be bought in the store anymore, and therefore the pieces are rare and exclusive. Everyone can go to the nearest hobby store and buy new materials, resulting in many people creating jewelry that looks similar. It’s true, just try looking around Etsy. Where is the fun in that?

I want to leave a fingerprint on my work though, something that shows the buyer, that this piece is unique, and that I put my heart into creating it. I spend a lot of time in second hand shops and on flea markets looking for the perfect pieces, as well as pulling apart, repairing and cleaning them. That’s what I like doing, and that’s what I want a potential customer to see in my work.

Recycling is also very good for the environment, but that’s something I’d like to write about next week, so keep an eye out for my next post, which will be about upcycling, recycling and downcycling in general 🙂

Mormons knocking on my door

Today, while minding my own business playing Tera, the doorbell rang. Of course I went to a safe spot to open the door… but I wish I hadn’t. Outside my door, I met two young men who were dressed nicely, and smiled at me. I knew where this was going, and my first thought was “Oh no, Mormons…” To me, they are just like Jehovah’s Witness; people who disturb you in your own private home, while trying to convert you to some absurd religion.

I think it’s okay for people to believe in whatever they want, and it should also be okay to believe in nothing, which is what I do. When people show up in front of my door to prove me wrong though, the fun stops. I really don’t like that! Because I don’t want to come across as a rude and ignorant woman, I don’t slam the door in their faces, although that’s what I always feel like doing. Besides, they were nice guys, so what the heck…

From the very beginning of the conversation, I made it clear that I don’t believe in any God, never have, and never will. That’s something that either scares them off, or makes them want to talk even more. Sadly, this time it was the second option, and they tried their best to make me believe that God is watching me. I’ve talked with them before, but this time I noticed something. It’s like they want to take advantage of your doubt.

While Jehovah usually just tries to fill you with as much information as humanly possible while talking to you, these two guys tried to bombard me with questions they wanted to answer themselves, almost as if they wanted me to doubt myself, and then accept any answer they had to give. Questions like “What happens when you die?” and “What if God appeared in front of you right now?” leave me cold though, as the answer to both those questions is “Nothing.” Nothing happens when I die, and nothing would happen if God would appear in front of me right now.

They were not too happy with me fighting off every question with disbelief, as they told me God exists, and they have proof of it in their book. One of the guys pulled a book out of his bag, and asked me if I wanted to hold it. Uhm, no thanks. Apparently though, true salvation was to find within that book, and they had both experienced the power of God after reading it, and they thought I should too. “Guys, I don’t even get to read what I really want to, because of our noisy neighbors…” Implying that I have better books I’d rather spend my energy on, if only I had the required peace and silence to do that.

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It was like that for about 10 minutes, and my biggest worry was, if my priest on Tera had now died because of my absence. Fortunately, they didn’t seem to have anything more to say, and we shook hands and parted ways, while I told them that I do find religion interesting, but I will never believe in any God. Something my boyfriend thinks I should not have said, because now they’d just come back next week for another talk, haha! Well, they can always stop by, but I’m not sure I’ll greet them with a smile again.

Well anyway, as mentioned above, I think it’s perfectly fine to believe in whatever you want, but when you try to rub your belief in my face, I draw the line. When your religion affects me in a negative way, I won’t convert to it, will I? Would you? Probably not. If I want to know more about something, I grab my phone and Google it. What I really don’t need is someone telling me I should try to pray sometime, as it would help me find God. I’d rather try looking for my plastic covers for laminating, as chances are bigger to find them, than to find God.

On that note, I’d never try to force someone into NOT believing in God. I tell people why I don’t believe in anything, but only if they ask me. I find it very rude to disturb people in their homes, just to try and convince them of something they are allowed not to believe in. I wish I could find a nice way to tell them just that, and avoid that awkward conversation when they knock on my door, but I can’t seem to find the right words, and am afraid of coming off as a rude atheist prick… *sigh*

Oh well, while I do not like to change the topic within the same post, I’ll do it anyway. Because I just want to announce, that I’ve made my first Etsy sale, and will ship the item today! It was for a friend though, so my shop is not officially open yet, and thus not linked here. I’m also working on a custom order for another friend, and won’t upload any items to Etsy again before I’m done with it. But hey, I’m working hard on improving my skills, and just wanted to announce, that an Etsy shop is on the way, which I hope will be a good experience for me!

Back on topic (sorry): What do you think about Jehovah and Mormons knocking on your door? Do you talk to them, or have you got a nice method of making them leave without being rude? Are you maybe a member of either of those religious groups, and would like to defend your honor? I’m interested in knowing! 🙂

The ups and downs of getting a new computer

It’s always nice to get a new toy, especially when you really needed an upgrade. For a few years, I’ve been using my boyfriends PC, because my old one (which runs on Windows XP, whoa!) pretty much gave up. It ran WoW until Pandaria, which is where I quit the game anyway, but it was horrible for Tera. Actually, it couldn’t run Tera with graphics that made the characters resemble humans at all. It resulted in me basically taking over my boyfriends PC for playing Tera and FFXIV, and later on; everything. It became my PC in the end, and I must say, I’ve used it to the fullest.

When a PC is 8 years old though, it’s like 100 human years, and although it could still run FFXIV, and even Tera on almost the highest graphics, it began to lag, show error messages, had issues downloading Windows 7 updates from over one year ago, and so on. It was a mess, and getting it up and running would sometimes take me over an hour. Not to mention that opening Skype became a no-go the past few months, as it would make the PC slow down so much, that it would eventually freeze or end up with a blue screen. Yeah, it was that bad.

Now, I do not consider myself to be a poor person, but a new PC was still way too expensive for little me, and I kept living with what I had, because even though it was no fun to start up and shut down, the PC still did its job. My boyfriend couldn’t live with it though, and Thursday last week, he had a little surprise for me. Turns out he went to the local PC and electronics store and said he needed a gamer PC, which would be able to just run whatever I wanted to play without lag or graphics issues. And that’s exactly what he came home with, and surprised the shit out of me. Or well, at least he surprised the tears out of me, especially since I do not consider myself worthy of such an expensive gift. But he said I deserved a PC that suited my needs, since I spend so much time in front of a monitor, and getting errors half of the time was not acceptable.

I’m a person who clings to her technology until the very end though, so I’m not used to getting stuff like a new PC, phone or whatever, and every time I do, it opens up a whole new world for me, and I feel like Zoolander and Hansel with the Apple computer. Luckily, nowadays you just turn on the PC, and it starts running. No pesky DVD-Roms and CD’s all over the table to install graphic card, speakers and whatever else is needed. That’s fine, but I still felt like a monkey getting it up and running…

Anyway, the ups surely showed themselves real fast. Literally speaking. The PC is fast, and of course it runs Tera without issues. I still get horrible lag spikes now and then while playing, but I think it’s the games fault, as I never ever had issues with FFXIV or WoW. Also, I still get an error notice when starting up the PC, causing it to restart again… Which it does really fast, but still. I feel haunted by those things, and I hope the PC store has a solution to this problem.

As I’ve been using an external hard-disc for years, getting my stuff to the new PC was none of my concern. I did need to fetch a few documents and game screenshots stored in the old PC though, but that took like 2 minutes to copy. Aaand I forgot to get all my favorite sites from the browser, which is a major bummer. I thought they would be transferred with my Google account, for me to view them when downloading Chrome again, but nope. Guess I didn’t save them properly or whatever. Maybe that’s not so bad though, as I have a very bad habit of saving every link that interests me, and my favorite folder was overflowing with useless stuff anyway. A fresh start might be good for me.

Comparison. Left is the old PC, and right is the new one.

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Now to the downsides. Windows 10! I get why so many people try to avoid it all costs. It’s absolutely horrible! I don’t feel comfortable using it, and I don’t think I ever will, as it’s everything but user friendly. I’d like to know what the heck the people at Microsoft were thinking when designing this piece of ugly crap. Makes me really happy that I still have the original version of Windows Vista on my laptop, because whatever people might say about Vista, it’s easy to navigate, and it works! In case you might wonder how that’s possible, it’s because my laptop is intentionally internet free, doesn’t get Windows updates, and is overall just my little darling. The Windows thing brings me to my next downside…

… no Word! As someone who likes to write, not only blog entries, but other things as well, not having Word is the worst thing for me right now. I downloaded a program called Kingsoft Writer to even type this, and it’s awful. It doesn’t have the functions I’m used to getting with the free Word Starter on Windows 7, and it’s really just frustrating. Of course, this is something I will have to look into getting again, but in my mind, it’s plain bullshit (excuse my language please) that a modern operating system like Windows 10 doesn’t come with a proper program for writing. I mean, if it was free a handful of years ago, why remove it in future versions? I feel like I get less with 10 than with 7, and that’s not how a company should work.

Okay, so my main issue is not with the PC, but with Windows 10. Now I understand why my boyfriend was so sad when he told me it was impossible to get an older version installed. I bet that I will get used to a lot of this with time, but right now it just irks me. Error messages when starting up, Windows 10 being unfriendly, having no Word… It’s not how I imagined it would be when getting a new PC. But hey, I can play Tera now, which is nice. I also can’t wait to get back to FFXIV once my life is not as chaotic as it is now, and I feel like paying for a subscription again. It will be glorious!

Tiny bits of a life