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red agateJust perfect for your Halloween creations -- these Red Agate Evil Eye beads are of stone that was formed from layers of silica from volcanic cavities. Agate is named after the Achates River (now known as the Dirillo River) on the island of Sicily, Italy, whose upper waters were an ancient source of this gemstone. Each strand offered here has 16 round faceted beads, with colors ranging from red to amber, as shown. Each bead is approx. 10 mm. with an approx. 2 mm. hole. Each strand is $10, but for a limited time, take 10% off with the code HALLOWEEN at checkout.


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women with disabilitiesI have been amazed and impressed by how many beaders and jewelry designers with disabilities are using their craft and skill to make a living, and have learned about some of the many challenges they regularly face and successfully overcome.  I have no expertise in this domain, so I thought I'd share a link to a conversation I found elsewhere on the internet.

The discussion is inspiring and shows that the act of beading and design is healing in itself, not to mention the joy of friendship and gratitude for the many who share camaraderie in these challenges, and others who provide help and support.  If any of you have a similar story to share, we'd love to hear from you via posts to this blog. 



+3 # Cat Miller 2013-02-27 18:14
Some might challenge my saying I'm even partially disabled but severe osteoarthritis in both knees, fibromyalgia, anxiety attacks, etc have stopped me from doing a lot. I do still work full time as a computer programmer but I've started selling beaded jewelry, with a portion of most sales helping other groups and fund raisers.

The beading gave me something I could do, besides program, when so many other things were becoming too painful. It also gave me something I could try doing with my daughter who is almost 11 now. I couldn't go play in the park with her (she once told me "Mom you can't catch me. I can run, you can't") and was having more and more issues just walking around. I've had to use a cane for a couple of years now.

I'm finally old enough that they don't say I need to wait to get one of my knee's replaced. So in March I'm having that done. I've already signed up for a craft show about 2 months after surgery as an incentive to work hard to recover.
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0 # Kathy Hansen 2015-03-16 14:42
Hi Cat. By destiny or I think it was your turquoise, I am here thinking to myself, this is MY story. right down to the name, except I'm Kat. I have 5 broken vertebra in my t spine and 2 lumbar. Severe osteo arthritis, and severe degeneration. basically my bones are crumbling. I live on SSDI it's difficult. I have been making jewelry, sewing hobo bags or shoulder bags. Recently I bought PMC3. I made a tiny charm, wrapped in saran wrap. Pmc3 is so expensive. then I saw your bead. It looks real, I sure its not, as easy as it looks. I am going to give it a try. I hope you ae doin well.
Thank You,
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0 # Sheila McLaughlin 2013-02-27 19:41
Thanks for posting this, Cat! I know fibromyalgia alone is so painful and difficult -- my heart goes out to you! I've had some difficulty of my own with arthritis and that is such a challenge as well. Good for you for being so proactive and making the best of things!
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0 # Silvercloud 2013-05-20 18:17
Thank you Sheila for this. A woman who might be interested in being added is a friend, MaryAnne Murphy, whose email is maryanne@on the

My very best regards.......B eth
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0 # SheilaOM 2015-03-16 15:02
Thank you, Cat and Kat, for adding your stories and inspiring us with your courage.
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