Wednesday, February 23, 2011

"no guts no glory"

This quote comes from many places, but I am referencing it's presence on Patrick's favorite show... "Gold Rush:  Alaska".  Apparently the oldest of the gold miners on this show says this, and it got stuck in Pat's head (lucky me) and he said it the whole 1.5 hour trip we took this weekend to Boone, NC.

Boone is actually really far away from us, but it is close to my parents house, and since we were there this weekend, we decided to trek up there and try our luck at some gem mining!  My mom and dad came along with us and we had so much fun!  We sat out in the gorgeous 65 degree weather with our 5 gallon bucket and we scooped dirt and panned it in a flume and picked out our little (and sometimes not so little) gemmies! And we learned a lot too.  Who knew that North Carolina was the gemstone capital of North America?

Well, in all my infinite wisdom (aka excitement) I forgot our camera to take pictures of the actual mining.  Bummer!  But here's what we came home with:

Bags full of lots of quartz, garnets, topaz and more!
The small stone is my little baby emerald, and the bigger one is one of my sapphires!  

Jack was very interested in my chunk of rose quartz

And it wouldn't be mining without a little fool's gold :)

My big piece of tourmaline

We also found some more that is currently being made into jewelry for me and my mom!  In just 2 weeks I will be the proud owner of a dalmation jasper, 2 sparkling sapphires, 1 red ruby and a big old aquamarine all of which will be cleaned, polished and cut and ready to be set in something pretty!  My mom chose a giant piece of red jasper my dad found, her big emerald rock, an amethyst and a ruby too!  Can't wait to see how they turn out!

Now all we need is a rock tumbler so we can get our pieces at home shining like the real gems they are... 

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