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December - Turquoise

turquoise watercolor by Michelle Constantinescu Here we all are, almost made it thru 2018 as we stride into the last month of the year. December is so spoiled it has 3, count ‘em, THREE birthstones! Who said it could be that greedy? I guess a lot of things come in threes, so here goes. December is unique in that it has three different birthstones: Zircon, Tanzanite, and Turquoise. We do have limited applications with Tanzanite, but this blog will focus on Turquoise as we utilize it primarily from December’s offerings. Turquoise is the rare opaque birthstone, with a beautiful blue-green color. It’s mineral composition is made up of copper, aluminum and phosphate. One of the oldest known gems to be...

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T I M E

by Madi Jensen Well we are about to fall backwards and by doing so, the Earth will grant us one hour we did not have before. How many times have you wished you had a remote that could stop time? What would you do with that extra time? I’ve wished for more time when I’ve been sleep deprived, studying for an exam, or getting a massage. But what if I prepared myself better for this additional unit of time that is fast approaching? My list of things to do is already full, I could use this time to cross something off! Or the time could be spent staying up late, justifying that the extra hour is like it never happened...

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November - Topaz

Opal watercolor by Michelle Constantinescu November is another month that has two birthstones: Citrine, and Topaz. Citrine is becoming harder and harder to find as an authentic gemstone as the vast majority of citrine is actually heated amethyst. Just google “citrine heat treated amethyst” to see more articles about it than you care to read ;) We’ll be focusing on Topaz instead. Topaz is a type of silicate mineral, and is the hardest silicate on the Mohs scale (8:10). Topaz is a fairly transparent mineral and because it’s so hard, it has become used widely in jewelry. Commonly known for a beautiful amber brown, yellow color, Topaz actually comes in a variety of colors from blue, all the way to...

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October - Opal

Opal watercolor by Michelle Constantinescu Opal is October’s opulent and ostentatious birthstone, but not the only one. October is another dual birthstone month, Tourmaline shares the spotlight. Out of all the birthstones we love, Opal is one of the most captivating and visually striking of the bunch. Pushing out vibrant colors the entire range of the rainbow, Opal is one of the most fascinating stones we carry. Opal is a variety of silica, and because its content may include a large percent of water, is actually considered a “mineraloid”. Because of the unusual non-crystalline structure of most opals, they are comparatively brittle compared to most birthstones and should be treated delicately. The name “opal” derives from the Greek word opallios which...

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Notes for the Backpacker

by Madi Jensen B and I are about to embark on our trip! We are calling it our belated honeymoon/two year anniversary trip. Where exactly are we going? Well to find out, you will have to stay tuned to my instagram feed! What I will share with you is that we will be in Europe and we are only taking our backpacks. To be fair, our bags are smaller hiking packs, larger than your regular school bag. I was searching the net for ideas of what to pack for our two week long adventure. I was able to gather a few ideas, such as, pick a color scheme, keep outfits versatile, and include some basics. Here’s what I have packed...

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