I was born in Texas, but raised in Arizona after my folks split. I’m the seventh generation of an Arizona ranching family on my mother’s side…Native turquoise jewelry has always been a part of my life.
My family traded horses and sheep with the Navajo, and my grandmother was best friends with a Navajo lady… like another grandma. When she passed away, she handed down all her turquoise to my grandmother. A squash blossom so big and long it always took my breath away.
When my grandmother passed, the collection was split between my mom and aunts. My mother has the cuffs Bisbee turquoise and a heishi. One aunt got the squash blossom. One got the earrings.
So now I’m trying to build up my own collection, To add to the gaps. I currently have a ithica peak pendant big as a chicken egg with a unique white inclusion. I thought it was fake at first had to have it tested to confirm… thank goodness it’s an open back setting so I could get a sample from the back.
I have a Freda Martinez ring set with Number 8 turquoise.
My dad and I spent every summer traveling around Arizona. My dad was a rockhound and gold prospector, so we went to every single one of these famous mines, got permission and he and I would spend days picking through tailings.
So I’ve had an interesting life so far, and turquoise played a big part of it. The stone and native silver art play a big role.