In Summer of 2004, I took   classes in St. Louis for metalsmithing. I got  some silver work experience, for making silver core lined beads, and other silver work.  Very groovy! Check out if ya wanna see where I took my class.   Ask for Peg Fetter. 

Fall 2004, I went to Romeoville, IL for a way fun Sun/Mon class with Barrie Edwards, Silversmith Queen.  She was so sweet and pretty, and nice.  Very talented lady......and you should definitely ask to see her tatooes!   Mary "McDuck" was the very nice host lady, also very skilled.
WOW!  We had a class with Princess Corina in St. Louis all day on October 10th 2004!
It was amazing to really SEE how she does everything.   I took the photo (see left).

We learned how to do the "Haiku" series with palladium leaf, plaid beads, stringer beads, silver fuming, etc.  (Happy sigh)  It was beady fun at it's best.  She was right in there with us, standing over my shoulder and grabbing my hands and tools and saying "do it like THIS" was cool.

She was very kind, and she knew who I was by name, because she had published a bead of mine in her Spotlight on the Inner Child publication.   I gave her a pumpkin kitty and showed her some of my recent work, and she was very complementary.   She is no longer lampworking as of September 2006.

BlueFire Beads
I began studying the glass art form in the fall of 2002.   I found a true glass artist in Lenox, Illinois, by the name of Mari Johnson.  She is a fabulous artist, having studied with many accomplished teachers herself.  In January 2003, I drove 3 hours, took a 4 hr class and went home. The class was mostly "how not to blow up your house", with safety stressed constantly.  I did some basic basic beads, and some twisties and that is it.  I came home and my wonderful DH promptly cut a 6 inch hole in the foundation of the house to properly vent my "studio".
Passing the Flame
In January 2003, 1 week before my class, I got this book by Corina Tettinger.  I had NO IDEA then how lucky I was that this book came out JUST when I started lampworking.  Very profound.  I slept with this book, reading it day and night for many many many months.   Besides getting a GOOD (expensive) torch, this book was the most important investment in my lampworking journey. 
My Birthday and My Sister
On my birthday in 2002, I had a 'bead party' where a lady comes to your house and sets out beads, and you make your own bracelets.  WELL...I loved it, but I couldn't find beads I liked.  THEN I found out about  lampwork beads, but couldn't locate any in my area.  I saw some "on line" but that was it.
In October, I visited my lovely sister in Orlando and SAW and BOUGHT some "real" beads.   She was the one that said "why don't you take a class?" .   And thus began my journey of glass.
GlassStock Invite!
Well, I got an invitation to GlassStock 2004 in Oregon during September.  You must be "juried in" and then receive an official invite for one of the 60 positions. I am pretty shocked to get in, and very honored. It is a 4 day glass frenzy, where glass folks work in all things glass: glass blowing, making fused plates, paperweights, you name it!!  Opportunity to work in glass venues other than what you "normally" do.  
Alas....had to say no to the trip....sniff sniff.  But I am hoping to go someday.
These are Classes I have taken - Stories of my glass Journey
Stephanie Sersich -  January 2005.....I was at Sorella Beads in St. Louis. A bracelet class with Stephanie Sersich, who make way cool beads, but also is "famous" for her knotted bracelets, and I've always wanted to take a class with her. 
As you can see: I had BIG fun!  I created this Stephanie style "spiney knotted" bracelet, which uses macrame knotting using waxed linen, and knotted and tied using my lampwork beads and assorted purchased beads. I own a Stephanie Star pendant bead, and this bracelet matches it perfectly!
Stephanie charges minimum of $150 per bracelet, and with lampwork they go up to $350.  So....NO....I won't make you one!   Just showing off here!  (BTW, don't you love the star bead I made? I'm pretty proud of that one!)
COOL STORE:  is a GREAT bead store located in Morton, IL, and the owner, Teresa Kodatt,  carries some of my beads!    And she hosts the Morton Molten Maniacs beadmaking group once a month and is a FABULOUSLY talented beadmaker.  A truly lovely lady.

BETZBEADS : cool site!'
Cindy Betz makes the way coolest beads.....her sculpteral work is fabulous.  She teaches classes and is a whole bunch of fun to be around.  Check her out at   
The Glass Journey
Cool Stuff and Bead Links
Jennifer Geldard May 2006 .....I was at Sorella Beads in St. Louis.
Yikes!  Jenn G rocks the glass house for sure!  She is quiet, mellow and fun, and she can make glass do stuff that is amazing.   An excellent teacher, she provides all information, doesn't leave anything out and shares her knowledge freely.   I had a bunch of fun, and I learned a lot. This is the best class I have had to date.   Sorella Beads is a nice place to take a class.