The Lion Emerald crystal, feature on Thorn & Vine blog with gemologist and author Elizabeth Van Tassel

Inspiring Emerald Gem Discovery

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There’s been some neat discoveries coming up on my radar as a gemologist, and I love to collect these tidbits for inspiration for stories, especially if it involves emeralds. I thought you’d like to share some of the most dramatic ones of late. My love of emeralds Emeralds have always fascinated me, even before I […]

Mashka Jewelers with Gemologist and Author Elizabeth Van Tassel, books with gems displayed.

Mashka Jewelers, San Francisco

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I discovered wonderful Mashka Jewelers, truly a new favorite treasure by the historic area of Fisherman’s Wharf, where seagulls fly high, swimmers brave the brisk waves with Alcatraz in the distance, and fog burns away to reveal historic vessels and blue waters. I was with friends visiting San Francisco at the iconic Ghirardelli Square, the […]

The Allure of pink diamonds with gemologist and author Elizabeth Van Tassel

The Allure of Pink Diamonds

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To celebrate spring, we’re starting a new series with a gem of the month beginning with pink diamonds. My personal favorite gem stone is very rare, and even a bit mysterious. Perhaps as a gem mystery/fantasy author, that’s why I like it so much. I first saw the gem while I was in school to […]

Fourtané Jewelers delights with stories behind gems

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On a cold, rainy day in Carmel, CA, I tucked inside and found a whole other world with the wonderful, historic Fourtané Jewelers. As a gemologist, I’m always looking for exceptional jewelry, and as a resilience expert I love to focus on beauty. I was especially thrilled to spend time with their master jeweler who […]

Tools and Treasures For A Great New Year

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Thorn & Vine blog features three key areas to ramp-up your new year dreams and reenergize your family during this first quarter of 2017. Life 101 has tips for living well and intentionally with your choices and planning. Life Stories dives deep with books and inspiring stories of resilience. And in A Beautiful Life, you’ll […]

Never Let Go Of Magic with Author Shannon Messenger

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  Recently I met Shannon Messenger, author of the middle grade Keeper of the Lost Cities series and the Sky Fall series for young adults. Shannon is a delight and her stories are so wonderful. It was a genuine pleasure to meet her and hear about her books for both groups. Shannon is an accomplished […]

San Francisco Christmas Gem Tour

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As a little holiday gift, I’m taking you gem shopping in San Francisco. In addition to being a resilience expert, I also am a graduate gemologist and write gem-filled mysteries for teens and tweens. It’s been a good year, and together we’ve tackled tough topics in life, bringing new insights together for more resilience in […]

Find Your Updraft

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Part four of the New Beginnings Series. And How I Became A Gemologist! So you’ve been working diligently to understand your deepest desire, gotten infrastructure in place to support a move, and watched for open doors. Perhaps you’ve just stepped through one and aren’t sure what to do next. That’s the key moment to look […]

Guest Blogging At Seriously Write!

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Today I’m guest blogging at the wonderful blog to encourage writers, Seriously Write. My thanks to Dawn Kinzer for inviting me to share tips on how to share gems from your heart about being resilient in difficult times, without sharing the “rough.” Come join me there! http://seriouslywrite.blogspot.com/2015/05/how-to-only-share-your-written-gems-not.html