A to Z 2022, Blog

R is for Rhodochrosite – #atozchallenge

R is for Rhodochrosite

The first time I was introduced to rhodochrosite was in my lapidary class. One of my fellow students was struggling to get a polish on a piece of the pink and white material. It was the first pink ‘rock’ I had seen. She purchased a slab (a mineral that has been cut into a slice but not shaped or polished) from a man at the local flea market. I even went to the flea market to try to find him to no avail.

Rhodochrosite is otherwise known as manganese carbonate, a minor ore of manganese. Manganese is an important mineral for the human body and is available naturally through leafy greens, beans, nuts, etc., and is included in most multi-vitamin supplements.

As a gemstone it can be a deep pink, or more frequently a banded stone with varying degrees of the color pink and often containing some streaks of brown. It is a relatively soft stone (the reason my fellow student was having a difficult time achieving a polish) coming in at a 3.5 – 4 on the Mohs scale. It is rated as having low toxicity although I have read it can contain trace amounts of lead.

Let’s take a minute and talk about safety and common sense. Unbelievable as it may seem, I have read an article or two advocating making elixirs by soaking minerals in water and consuming them.  DO NOT DO THAT. Minerals are intertwined with so many elements and other minerals (many being toxic) it is an extremely risky practice.

This is a beautiful crystal specimen of rhodochrosite mined in Colorado. It is part of the mineral collection in the National Museum of American history.

Courtesy of the Smithsonian under Creative Commons Zero (CC0) License

This video shows some highly polished rhodocrosite cabochons. This is the color patterns most often seen. Finding pure pink rhodochrosite is rare.


Throwback Thursday #35 – Going, Going, Gone

I’m back! Another easy one this week so let’s get started.

If you care to join us, it’s easy.

  • Write your own post sharing your memories and leave a pingback to this post in the comments.
  • You can use the photo above in your post to make it easier to find.
  • Tag it with #TBTMemory or #IRememberWhen.
  • If you do not wish to write your own post, feel free to tell your story in the comments below.

This week’s prompt is: Things I Miss

This week think about objects or places you miss having in your life. It could be a favorite toy, a photograph, a favorite hang-out, a favorite store or shop, a collectible, a favorite pair of jeans, or old movie ticket stubs. It can be anything your little heart desires. Write about one thing or write about a few. You’re running the show this week!

My post follows:

To me, some memories are best in our minds. Take clothes for instance. I had some great clothes, but I was a toothpick then! Having them in front of me might be depressing!

There are a few things I wish I still had Or things I miss and together they are quite an eclectic mix.

  1. My grandmother was a nurse and she had a few glass hypodermic needles each in their own cardboard box. I wish I had them. They were objects of fascination for me as a child.
  2. Then there was my collection of broken glass. I spent months wading the creeks, picking up beautiful pieces of glass smoothed by tumbling over the rocks for miles and miles. I kept them in the cardboard box my Barbie came in.
  3. There was a drive-up burger place called the Hi-Lo burger. Our parents took us there often. Later in life I went there with my Dad and my children. The building was still standing, but it has been closed for years. They had THE best burgers and I had the best memories.
  4. I wish I still had my class ring. It was from Jostens of course – white gold with a hematite stone with my initials inside. Stupidly, I gave it to my ex-husband who in turn gave it to his girlfriend telling her it was his. Obviously with my initials inside, neither of them were too bright.

I must stop now before I ramble on and on. I look forward to your posts!