Yesterday I made a bunch of bracelets using memory wire and size 6 Czech glass seed beads. They're so easy: Using a wire cutter, cut the desired length of memory wire, then using small jewelry pliers (or whatever tool you have on hand that will work), bend one end of the wire to make a closed loop (so beads won't fall off). String your beads onto the wire, then close to the end, make a second loop (again to stop the beads from falling off). That's it!
In addition to the two bracelets in the photo above, I made two multi-wrap versions: one wraps around the wrist 6 times, the other wraps around 8 times. I ended up preferring the single-wrap bracelets on me, but I gave one of the multi-wrap versions to Gretchen (who was working at my house yesterday) and she seems very happy with it. The single-wrap versions each took me about 15 - 20 minutes to complete, so this is definitely a quick fix creative project. I think it would be really fun to make these with kids, but my (adult) friend Suzan is coming over tomorrow and I'm hoping she'll want to make one too. The package of memory wire (which I picked up at a local craft chain store) does say it's for adult use—maybe because the end of the wire is pointy and it hurts if you poke yourself—but I think it would be fine to make these with calm, careful kids (who won't go nuts if they get poked).
I'm in the midst of editing a complicated manuscript and have a few other challenging projects in progress. So, there's a lot going on. But yesterday I was having trouble focusing and wasn't getting much done. Instead of trying to force the work, I realized that what I really needed was to slow down and quiet my mind. While I was stringing the beads for the bracelets, I started thinking about a video about knitting I was in a few years ago: At the start of it I say, "Our culture is very much wrapped up in chasing things. I don't have that chasing feeling when I'm knitting." Actually, any rhythmic handwork that we are comfortable doing can have the same effect as knitting.
Yesterday while I was making bracelets, I didn't feel like I was chasing my work or anything else. I just felt relaxed and happy. And today I'm having a much easier time with that manuscript.