Saturday, April 4, 2015

Getting ready for Easter Celebrations

Bit's Bird's Nest Mashed Potatoes -

Tuesday, February 24, 2015

move over Blogger

Hi all,
    I just wanted to let you know that most of my #blogs will now be made on #WordPress at  I found the layout possibilities were much more conducive to what I want.  =)  But don't worry.  I won't forget my #Blogger peeps.  I'll still post here from time to time, at least with a link to my latest blog.  =)  If you like, you can subscribe. 
   I look forward to hearing from you over there.

Delightfully beading away,

Thursday, January 29, 2015

LA County Fair '14 with Misti

I really enjoyed my time at the LACF last year.  It was so fun getting to see some of my clients there, as well as meet so many wonderful people of all ages!  Thank you so much, everyone who came by.   Make sure to join me next year, too!  I'm betting there will be more FREE Make & Takes!

Friday, January 16, 2015

True freedom

True Freedom

         This morning, I pondered life's schedules, routines, chores, etc. and I realized how much God wants to bless me.  He wants to give me true freedom.  He wants me to live a fulfilled, satisfying life.  He wants those things for me, because He loves me.
       I was at the Pasadena Bead & Design Show yesterday, to take some classes instead of offering some this time.  I had a blast!!  I saw a couple of my favorite vendors, (Beads U Need manager, Iqbal Esaf, his brother, and his employee Lee) and Eriko Page of Heart & Hand.  Eriko is an amazing Polymer Clay artist and is doing Demonstrations & a Make & Take at the Show.  Art Clay World is also there offering some free Make & Takes, Demonstrations & Classes. (Bear with me, this all matters.  Oh, and the links are there in case you want to check them out.  FUN!!!)  So--I planned out my schedule so I could do the FREE Silver Pendant Make & Take at Art Clay World, see the demos they and Eriko were offering, do Eriko's Make & Take & get to 2 classes!  A whirlwind of fun, with a few small windows of time to get lunch, shop, etc.  So, I'm sitting at Eriko's booth, watching her demonstration & listening to her tips and up walks Maria E.  (I won't use her last name, as I didn't ask her permission to talk about her in my blog, but she knows who she is!)  She looked really familiar, but I didn't say anything to her at this point.  (I'll get back to her in awhile.)  Others came up and were watching & working as we went from demo to Make & Take.  I was wearing my Sundress Necklace in Tanzanite Swarovski Crystals and some people watching asked me about it.  I told them it is a class I teach and they want to do it!  I got that response all day!  It was very exciting!  I ran into a customer Patti K. who was looking forward to seeing me and taking classes from me this weekend, and was disappointed to find out I was only there to play.  While I was still doing the Make & Take, a man was watching and overheard me talking about the classes I offer, locations where I teach & events I in which I participate, like the LA County Fair as a DIY Studio Instructor.  Some had asked for my business card, so I started passing it out to people who asked about me, including this man.  He said, "You're Misti?  Who does your marketing?  I see your name & picture all over the place!"  I was thrilled, to say the least, and told him I did.  I really don't do much marketing, I'm not good at it.  I just use the standard social media outlets like Facebook & Pinterest and am myself!  That blew me away! 
      Then I go to my next demo and there sits the lady I thought I had recognized, Maria.  I told her I recognized her name & said she must be on my mailing list.  She replied that she had met me at my Make & Take booth in the DIY Studio at the LA County Fair!  It was so cool to see her again. 
      Okay, so you're probably wondering how the subject of True Freedom has anything to do with this.  Well, this morning I opened my Bible to Isaiah 31, a very familiar passage to me.  "Woe to those who go down to Egypt for help, and rely on horses, who trust in chariots because they are many, and in horsemen because they are very strong, but do not look to the Holy One of Israel nor seek the LORD!  Yet He also is wise and will bring disaster, and will not call back His words, but will arise against the house of evildoers, and against the help of those who work iniquity.  Now the Egyptians are men, and not God; and their horses are flesh, and not spirit.  When the LORD stretches out His hand, both he who helps will fall, and he who is helped will fall down; they all will perish." (verse 1-3).  And another very familiar verse popped into my head, "Some trust in chariots, and some trust in horses, but we will trust in the Name of the LORD our God." Psalm 20:7  These verses are saying that man's power, power created by man (chariots), and the power of even mighty animals (horses) will ultimately not help or save us.  Now, I have been praying a lot about my business because I have been having such troublesome issues with my neck, back & shoulders.  I took December & January off so that my chiropractic adjustments had time to take affect without being aggravated by beadwork.  I was feeling lost, unsure of what shows to continue to do, what teaching venues to continue to utilize--just how much to work at it.  I was about ready to scratch participating in the Beadagio shows altogether, then all this happened.  So, I realized that as I trusted in the Lord to market me and bring me the clients I need, He really was at work behind the scenes doing that.  He is hearing my prayers and sees my heart, that I really want to serve Him.  He really does want to bless me.  I can be free to be myself, do my business as the Lord directs me, even if it isn't "standard practice", and not worry.  (I mean, what retail seller takes off December?!) 
     The next verses I read that stuck out to me are in Acts chapter 3,  verse 19 & 26, "Repent therefore and be converted, so that times of refreshing may come from the presence of the LORD" and "...God, having raised up His Servant Jesus, sent Him to bless you, in turning away every one of you from your iniquities."  God gives us refreshing times when we repent & are converted (become a servant and child of His), and He BLESSES IN turning away from our selfish, lustful, arrogant ways.  Good comes when we do the right thing!  Good comes when we trust in our Maker!  He WANTS to bless us!  He WANTS to bless you!  What are you stressed about?  What are you struggling with?  I encourage you to trust God with whatever is weighing you down.  He WANTS to set you free from that weight, to bless you & refresh you!  If you haven't been converted, it is as simple as asking Him to forgive you and to become the Lord of your life.  He will do the rest!  John 8:32 "You shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free." 

Blessings on you as you give Him a chance!


Saturday, November 29, 2014

Happy Thanksgiving Weekend!

Hi all,
    I hope you have been enjoying this Thanksgiving weekend with family or friends, or at the least, a little time off.  I am grateful for this time to reflect and refocus my heart on all for which I am thankful.
    I am grateful for family and the time we get to spend together, some regularly, some rarely, but the love is still the same.  I am grateful for my church family who care so much and demonstrate it in big and small ways.  And I am grateful for the friends God has given me.  Some are near, some are far.  But either way, they are a blessing.  I am grateful for my customers and students and business associates.  You give me encouragement and hope.  And most of all, I am grateful for my LORD and Saviour Jesus Christ.  He daily gives me strength, peace, love, joy, direction and all I need for life and godliness. 
      May the goodness of the Lord surround you and may He hear your every prayer.  Wishing you a joyful heart of thanksgiving with loved ones to share with along the way this holiday season.
Delightfully beading away,
"The Happy Beader"

Wednesday, November 26, 2014

The Magic Bank Account


The Magic Bank Account

"Imagine that you had won the following *PRIZE* in a contest:  Each morning your bank would deposit $86,400 in your private account for your use.  However, this prize has rules: 
The set of rules:
1. Everything that you didn't spend during each day would be taken away from you. 
2. You may not simply transfer money into some other account.  
3. You may only spend it. 
4. Each morning upon awakening, the bank opens your account with another $86,400 for that day. 
5. The bank can end the game without warning; at any time it can say, “Game Over!" and can close the account and you will not receive a new one.
What would you personally do?
You would buy anything and everything you wanted right?  Not only for yourself, but for all the people you love and care for. Even for people you don't know, because you couldn't possibly spend it all on yourself, right?


You would try to spend every penny, and use it all, because you knew it would be replenished in the morning, right?
Shocked???  YES!
Each of us is already a winner of this *PRIZE*.  We just can't seem to see it.
1. Each morning we awaken to receive 86,400 seconds
As a gift of life.
2. And when we go to sleep at night, any remaining time is Not credited to us.
3. What we haven't used up that day is forever lost.
4. Yesterday is forever gone.
5. Each morning the account is refilled, but the bank can dissolve your account at any time WITHOUT WARNING ...
SO, what will YOU do with your 86,400 seconds?
Those seconds are worth so much more than the same amount in dollars.  Think about it and remember to enjoy every second of your life, because time races by so much quicker than you think. 
So take care of yourself, be happy, love deeply and enjoy life! 
Here's wishing you a wonderful and beautiful day.
Start “spending”.... 
My personal footnote: 
Time is short. 
If you don’t know Jesus
Or haven’t asked Him to forgive you of all your wrongdoing
& to be the Lord of your life, it isn’t too late. 
Do it today, right now. 
He’s waiting to hear from you. 
You could have a heart attack & die today & not get another chance.
And if you are at death’s door, It isn’t too late for you! 
Jesus is waiting to open heaven’s gates for you,
All you have to do is ask for His forgiveness
And mean it from your heart. 
Whatever your state, He will forgive you and accept you as you are.
He loves you so much that He died& rose again to prove it.
I care. 
and so is hell...
I want to spend eternity with you.  Will you accept my offer?
 “For God loved the world so much that He gave His Only Son,
That whoever believes in Him shall not perish,
But have eternal life.
God did not send His Son into the world to judge the world,
But that the world might be
Saved through Him.”  John 3:16-17

“Behold, I stand at the door, and knock:  if any man hear my voice,
And open the door,
I will come in to him, and will sup with him, and he with me. 
Revelation 3:20

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

My Age, Your Age, Any Age Will Do

My Age, Your Age,
Any Age Will Do

by Misti Cleveland
            As I approach 50 years of age, I have had mixed feelings about it.  Afterall, fifty is only middle aged if you live to 100!  I guess the likelihood of that is improving with medical break-throughs, but who wants to be middle aged even? We all want to be young forever. And fifty sounds so old!  

            Some say, “Age is just a number.” 

            Others say, “You’re only as old as you feel.” 

            Those are fine and dandy, well-meaning sayings, but the truth is that doesn’t always help.  What if you don’t “feel” young?  What if you are facing physical challenges in your body that limit or prohibit your activities?  That certainly doesn’t make for feeling young and full of life. But does age really matter? 

            All these things have been stirring around in my mind.  I watch as those around me struggle with that number, and numbers higher than that.  They battle that feeling of insignificance, fear that life won’t get any better than it is right now and that might not be exactly great, or fear of, even, death approaching and life never fulfilled their hopes or dreams.  So, how do we handle our age?  How do we handle another birthday when there is apparently nothing good left for which to look forward?

            My Heavenly Father has been listening, even though I have been feeling okay about it lately, and actually feeling optimistic about what the future holds.  Even so, I realize that my struggle to accept aging has not been mine alone and so He opened my eyes to the truth about age to me as I read my Bible this morning.  He helped me realize the real question, the only important question, “Does our age matter to God?”

            So, I sat down to read my Bible this morning and it fell open to Genesis 7:5 & 6.  I hadn’t been thinking about age when I opened to this, but these verses jumped off the page, so I paid attention.  I knew God was wanting to drop a nugget of gold into my heart.  This is what it says, “And Noah did according to all that the Lord commanded him.  Noah was 600 years old when the floodwaters were on the earth.” 

            “600!” I thought to myself.  “Holy cow, that’s old! Good grief, how old was he when he died, if he was 600 when he built the ark!?  And what age would he be according to today’s life span?”  So, I did a little hunting and figuring. 

            Gen. 9:28 & 29 say, “And Noah lived after the flood three hundred fifty years.  So all the days of Noah were 950, and he died.”  NINE HUNDRED FIFTY!!  Yowza!  In our day, looking at Noah’s life-span, let’s say he would have lived to about 95.   That would mean at SIXTY years old, God told him to build the ark to save the animals and his family from the flood—the destruction of wicked mankind.  At SIXTY!  I will be FIFTY in February.  Will God call me to do something monumental at 60?  Probably not.  And what do we know about Noah before this? Gen. 6:8-10 tell us he was a man of integrity who walked in fellowship with God and had 3 sons. So?  This is a wonderful, loving reminder to us that God will use the upright and blameless at ANY age, if they obey him. 

            Consider Abraham and Sarah.   We know a little bit more about their lives of obedience, and even their mistakes.  And yet Abraham was 100 and Sarah was 90, and both past child-bearing years when we see the miracle God did for & through them.  Now, that was in the days when men lived much longer than they do now and Abraham lived substantially longer than Sarah, almost 50 years.  So, being mathematically inclined, after doing a little math, I figured that would make him in our day about 71 and her about 66 when they had Isaac.  Yikes!  Can you imagine?  And consider that they weren’t perfect—Sarah laughed when God said she’d have a baby, and that was after giving her husband her concubine so he could have a baby with her.  And he did it!  So, God obviously didn’t give them Isaac because they were free of sin.

            We cannot forget Samuel.  Samuel was given to the temple by his parents as a baby.  It wasn’t his choice to go there.  But 1 Samuel 2: 18 says, “But Samuel ministered before the Lord, a child girded with a linen ephod,” and 1 Samuel 2:26  “Now the boy Samuel grew and was in favor both with the Lord and with men. And yet as a boy, the Lord called to him and spoke to him what was to come of the priest Eli’s wicked sons and had him tell Eli (Chapter 3).  Then “Samuel grew; the Lord was with him and let none of his words fall to the ground.  And all Israel from Dan to Beersheba knew that Samuel was established to be a prophet of the Lord.  And the Lord continued to appear in Shiloh, for the Lord revealed Himself to Samuel in Shiloh through the word of the Lord.” 1 Samuel 3:19-21  So, Samuel only knew church life and was only a mere child when God began to speak to and through him.  Did he earn it?  Was he simply chosen by God?  Was it because he was a child?

            Hmmm…Noah 60, Abraham 71, Samuel a boy, me 50.  What age are you?  Does it matter?  I think the point of all this is that AGE REALLY IS IRRELEVANT.  God made us to interact with whom He chooses for our mutual good & growth.  He has designed us for His purposes to be fulfilled in His time, no matter what age we are.  “For we are His workmanship created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand that we should walk in them.”  Eph. 2:10  So whether we are living a day to day life of integrity in fellowship with God like Noah, wandering about thinking we have to take matters into our own hands even though we trust God like Abraham & Sarah, or are raised in the church serving Him like Samuel, if our hearts are for the Lord and we are walking with Him, we are at His disposal to fulfill His purposes at whatever age He wishes. And THAT IS what matters.