Tuesday, December 16, 2008
Yesterday we woke up to icy roads and VERY cold temps. Tim called to let me know that he was picking me up for work in about fifteen minutes. I had just gotten out of the shower so I was scrambling to finish getting ready. I grabbed my coat and when I did I turned just the wrong way and pulled the muscle between my shoulder blade and the base of my neck. All day it hurt, sometimes to the point where I was tears, most of the time to the point where I just felt like I was going to throw up. When I arrived home from work, Momma was sitting at the table eating a leftover mashed potato bowl. She seemed fine and I went to change clothes. Of course, I was moving slow and she asked what was wrong and I told her. When I came back out of the bedroom she was on the couch and she asked for a pain pill. She said her ribs were hurting---which I think is actually her lungs. We watched "I Want A Dog for Christmas Charlie Brown"--her laying on the couch and me sitting on the floor trying not to move my head. We were a pair let me tell me you. At the end of the program, I left her laying on the couch watching TV while I went and laid down in bed to watch Monday Night Football. There was no comfortable spot but I ended up dozing off until Jeff came home around 10:30PM.
Today is transfusion day for Momma. She did not want to go because of the weather but she has to. Tracy drove over from Union, MO to go with Jeff and Momma. They were supposed to be at the hospital at 10AM. However, Jeff called at 10:30 to see if Momma had boots which meant that they hadn't left yet. I was on the phone with Momma's doctor at 8AM this morning trying to sort out a confusion over numbing cream that Christie had the doctor order for Momma but I didn't know about. This led to great frustration and tears on my part, a heated discussion between Jeff and I and then a heated discussion between Christie and I. Why are some days SO hard? I also asked the nurse to have the doctor stop by the hospital and listen to Momma's lungs. I'm afraid that she may be going into pneumonia again--what with the pain in her "ribs", her shortness of breath and her coughing.
Christmas is next week and I don't feel at all ready or "in the spirit" or anything. I have wreaths on my outdoor lights but the wreath on my front door is still an Autumn one. The tree is not up, the stockings are not hung, the presents are not wrapped or even completly purchased. Which leads me to the devotion today on Proverbs 31 Ministries which asks if we have gotten so caught up in the season that we have forgotten the reason. Yesterday's devotion spoke about Mary and Martha and the importance of sometimes just "sitting in your mess". The devotion spoke about how Martha was critical of Mary for sitting at the feet of Jesus when there was so much that needed to be done. Jesus chided Martha for this. The author of the devotion talked about how last year during the holiday season she just sat at her table in the midst of the mess and pretended that Jesus was sitting across from her. This refreshed her spirit so much that she plans on doing it again this year. I must admit that I am a Martha type as well. I can always find things that need to be done and often feel overwhelmed at the tasks before me. My "stress free" weekends always end up full of stress when all is said and done. SO I try---try to be more like Mary. I try to focus less on mess and more on spirit. Sometimes I accomplish this and sometimes I don't. However, over the last few days I have found that watching this segement from "A Charlie Brown Christmas" brings it all back into focus.
This show aired on TV last week. In a time where prayer in schools is prohibited and no one wants to mention God, I was happy to see that this is still airing on National Television.
So even though today is a melancholy day for me I still have much to be grateful for.
1. A boss that cares enough to pick up me for work so that I do not have to drive in this weather.
2. A new baby for our friends Sandra and Jaime
3. Parents that understand and allow me to vent when I need to
4. The freedom to hear about God on National Television
Monday, December 1, 2008
We had a nice Thanksgiving lunch with Tracy, Floyd, Luke, Spring, Big Momma, Loretta, Randy and Sofie. Loretta set a beautiful table, we started the meal with a champagne toast to all that we were thankful for, ate until we were stuffed and then watched some old family videos.
We had two drama's which was not too bad considering all that could have happened. The first was the explosion of the water dispenser. Loretta had planned to serve Spa Water which is water mixed with fresh strawberries, lemons and mint. I cut up the fruit, filled the water dispenser with ice and water and placed it on the table. As soon as I set the dispenser down, the side burst and "fruit fall's" occured. Water, fruit, ice and glass rushed all over the table and the floor. Luckily it was just Loretta and I so we cleaned up and moved on. The second was that Loretta's turkey was not done at 10:30AM like we thought. Loretta had splaycocked the turkey and cooked it in the convection oven for faster cooking. At 10:30AM, the meat thermometer said that it was done. At 12:30 when we were preparing to eat and she cut into it, we found out that it wasn't. Floyd to the rescue with his deep fried turkey!!!
Fred, Christie, Melanie and her kids joined us that afternoon for dessert and karoke. We even had Big Momma singing karoke--"That's Amore!" by Dean Martin. It really was a wonderful day with much to be grateful for.
I woke up at 2:30 the next morning with a slight case of the stomach flu. Luckily I was off work that day. Big Momma and I spent Friday in our jammas, taking naps and being lazy. On Saturday, I had lunch with a college friend that I hadn't seen in over five years. I was able to meet her husband and son and we caught up on what had been going on in our lives and all of our blessings. Yesterday was another lazy day. We woke up to a dusting of snow and VERY cold temps.
Big Momma has had a constant nose bleed since Friday and tomorrow is a transfusion day. It was back to work for me today but thankfully it wasn't too busy. I treated Big Momma to a mashed potato bowl from KFC for dinner and she went to bed early.
Well, the Monday night football game is entering the fourth quarter. So I need to see who wins.
Friday, October 31, 2008
So yesterday, we closed the office at 4:30. I rushed in the door anxious to get ready since trick or treat hours are from 5 to 9. I had no preset costume as money was tight this year. So I went down to my box of costumes from years past and dug out my witch outfit. This is a long black velvet dress with bell sleeves and a hood--very Goth looking. Needless to say it's been a few years since I last wore it so I had to really suck in for it to fit (if you know what I mean). I put on a long dark purple wig and put the hood up--I couldn't find my witch hat. I added some white makeup around my eyes to give them a deep set look and I was ready. Jeff moved the truck out of the driveway so the kids would have a clear path to the door. We put out the jack-o-latern and I settled in on the front porch.
Usually I make individual treat bags for the kids but I did not have any bags this year so I just went with the traditional bowl of candy. I also had a basket of Teddy Grahams for the bitties that usually come by as well (you know, little bitty kids). So I sat on the porch from 5PM to 6PM reading a magazine and no kids. Not one! I felt like a kid on Christmas waiting for Santa---where were they????
Jeff went up to Hardee's to grab some dinner for us and I went in the house. At 6:30, my first little guy showed up. He was a pirate and he said "Trick or Treat Smell My Feet Give Me Something Good to Eat". So cute!! Yeah, the kids were out. But no, there was no else out walking around. Jeff came back with dinner and we sat down to eat. He said that he had seen several groups of kids walking around the neighborhood and was suprized that we had only had the one brave soul. I was so depressed---I have good candy and I'm dressed up!!! Come to my house!!!
Since we are at the back of the cul-de-sac and were the only ones in the cul-de-sac with our porch light on, Jeff had the idea that maybe we should sit out in our driveway so people could see us. So at 7PM, we moved our chairs off the porch and into the driveway. It worked!!! The kids came and oh, they were cute!!! I ended up with about 50 kids last night plus one dog.
I had Tinker Bell, a mummy, a football player, a cowboy and policeman (they were SO cute), two bitties dressed as owls (they were in their stoller), a magician, a clown, a vampire, a Power Ranger, a Jedi Knight, and several that I wasn't sure but they were still cute. They were all SO polite and within the hour it was all done. The neighborhood once again became quite, the porch lights went out and we went back inside.
Today, I am wearing a black shirt that reads "Happy Halloween" across the front in orange and white letters. Yes I am like the little old ladies that wear something for every holdiay but I DO NOT have a Christmas sweater :>) Halloween is so much fun to me because it's full of magic and make believe---which without our imaginations what fun would life be????
I hope you have as wonderful a day as I am having!!!!
Tuesday, October 14, 2008
She had her platlet transfusion yesterday. I don't know what her numbers were because they didn't give them to Christie and I haven't heard from the doctor. Christie took Momma back to her house when her transfusion was done and I picked her up from there. Christie had made dinner (thank you :>)), so I ate while Momma napped and then we headed home about 7:30 last night. Momma was very tired and weak so she went right to bed. She was still asleep when I left this morning.
The weather here today is overcast and cool. Ali had an appointment at the groomers which Jeff was going to handle. Loretta has a second interview with Eli-Lily today, so please pray that God's will be done.
I will update day two of our Flagstaff trip soon.
Sunday, October 12, 2008
I have not had the opportunity to really get to know my niece or my sister-in-law for that matter because up until this past May they have lived in West Virginia, Utah and Arizona. My sister-in-law Loretta is Jeff’s brother’s wife. The few times I had met her prior to their moving to St. Louis, I felt that we could be close friends. Since moving to St. Louis, my feelings were justified. She and I have so many things in common (other than that our husbands are brothers)---we both love to cook/bake, we love the simple things in life and we can both appreciate the beauty found in nature. We both like organization and finding a good bargain.
Krystal is her niece that they adopted when Krystal was eleven, I believe. This weekend was the first opportunity that I really got a chance to spend time with her. She is a great girl with a fun personality, hardworking, very caring/kind and someone who anyone would be lucky to have as a friend. She has these beautiful eyes that are like blue pools, thick straight brown hair with blonde highlights and confidence not regularly found in today’s young adults.
Our flight left St. Louis at 6:15AM Saturday morning. Loretta picked me up at 10PM on Friday night, we met Jeff at their loft so I could see him before we left, I helped Loretta pack, and we crashed around midnight. 4AM came very quickly Saturday morning but Loretta and I were up and on our way to the airport by 4:30AM. We parked the car, caught the shuttle, printed out our boarding passes and made the decision to carry on our luggage after finding out that Northwest charged $15 a bag to check it. At security, we hastily repacked our toiletries into clear plastic bags and crossed our fingers that we wouldn’t have to surrender anything. I had to give up my hairspray, but oh well.
Airport security rules no longer allow outside food or drink past the security checkpoint. So once we made it through, we grabbed some breakfast and drinks. We flew from St. Louis to St. Paul, MN and then from St. Paul to Phoenix. Arizona is two hours behind us so we landed in Phoenix around 10:30AM (12:30 our time). Krystal met us and our adventure began.
Loretta and I were starving!!!! It was lunch time for us, so we stopped at Pepe’s Taco’s outside of Phoenix for lunch. I was introduced to Cheese Crisp which I absolutely adored---it’s a tortilla that has been fried and then smothered in cheese and baked. After lunch, it was back in the car and on the road to Flagstaff which is about a two hour driver from Phoenix.
Phoenix is very open, very flat, very brown and very bright. Along the drive we passed cactus, cactus and more cactus and in the background these gorgeous cliffs, peaks and rock formations in variations of red and browns. Loretta explained to me that the Saguaro cactus is a protected plant because it takes so long for them to grown and that if someone is found with one in their truck for example, they receive huge fines. The urban sprawl that we drove through outside of Phoenix was built around these cacti because of this reason. Krystal explained that we would reach a point where there would be a distinct change in the landscape from the flat openness to a hillier, woodsy area on our drive. I didn’t see this change though because I fell asleep---which if you know me is no big surprise.
Flagstaff sits at an elevation of 7000 feet so this was a new experience for me and my lungs but they responded very well :>)
The weather in Flagstaff was rainy and the temperature was brisk (in the 40’s or 50's if I had to guess). Loretta was looking for a down coat and Crocs without holes, I was comfortable in my long sleeve thermal shirt but would have been happy for a pair of gloves. We drove to the NAU campus and Krystal’s dorm first. The campus is so beautiful, very peaceful and calm. It feels and looks like the buildings magically appeared among the trees and you feel as if you are out in the middle of the forest at times. There are hiking trails through campus and the walk is quite often up and down hill.
We met Krystal’s roommate, Kristin, and her suite-mates Rachel and Ellen. The suites are two dorm rooms connected by a bathroom in the middle. Each room has two twin beds, two desks, two closets, two dressers, a book case and a small refrigerator. The bathroom consists of a counter with a double sink, a walk-in shower and a stall for the toilet. Loretta and I were staying in Krystal’s room so we dropped off our luggage and took off on a walking tour of the south campus.
Krystal took us to the DuBois Center or the “Dub” as the students call it. This building is sort of like their student union—it houses their cafeteria, an Einstein Brother’s Bagel restaurant, a small market type store, and a lounge. We took in the cafeteria (yes we were still hungry) where Loretta tried out the biscuits/gravy and some peas. I headed to the ice cream machine and grabbed a twist cone. From there we walked over to the Sky Dome to take in a Lumberjack (school mascot) football game.
I had never been to a college game and both Loretta and Krystal said that this was not a typical game. However, we did have a good time. There was not much fan excitement but we did come back with a great memory---whenever the Lumberjacks score a first down the announcer says in a very monotone voice “Move those chains…….that’s a LUMBER (slight emphasis on this)Jack…..and the crowd replies “first down”. One would think there would be some excitement in the announcers’ voice but there wasn’t.
We left at half-time because we were all three so tired we could barely sit up. We went back to the dorm and crashed HARD. We had talked about going to Sedona for dinner, then we talked about going into downtown Flagstaff for dinner, and once we hit the beds in the dorm we decided that pizza delivered was the best option. Krystal ordered the pizza, fixed Loretta and I a plate when it arrived and cleaned up afterwards which was great since neither Loretta or I had enough energy to move out of bed. To be honest I barely remember eating, that’s how tired I was.
That was day one. I will post day two for you tomorrow.
Momma goes in for her platlet transfusion tomorrow. She is VERY tired today and has the usual nose bleed. I made a German Apple Cake last night which turned out VERY yummy. We had that for breakfast this morning, Momma went back to bed, Jeff went to work and I watched football. I cannot believe that the Rams actually won a game!!!! My beloved Bucs pulled it off again this weekend---GO TAMPA BAY!.
I hope you have had a blessed day as well.
Thursday, October 9, 2008
This is Annie--the puppy that was being delivered. Isn't she sweet?
She was so good while she was at our house. Ali and Indy weren't too thrilled to have another animal invade their territory but we humans didn't mind a bit. If you love Annie as much as we do, Peggy has one male puppy left from the litter. You can go to http://seraphimkennels.com/ for more information. The puppies are pure bred Hungarian Wire-Haired Vizslas and make great hunting dogs if you are into the sort of thing.
Tuesday night was spent at my house just hanging out. Jaime had ordered pizza, the White Sox were still playing ball at that point and we spent the time catching up. Jackson is absolutely adorable---look at this face and tell me that you just can't help but smile....
Jaime is such a good mom--she loves him but doesn't coddle him. He's just a good baby (even though Jaime says he doesn't sleep through the night). We didn't really hear him cry once the whole time they were here.
Wednesday, Annie's new owner's picked her up and then everyone went over to Randy and Loretta's to meet Sofie's bus. They hung out with Sofie for the afternoon until Randy, Loretta and I got off work and joined them. Once again we had pizza, watched the Cubs this time and chatted. Poor Loretta was having computer problems at work and didn't get home until 8:30 or so. Even then she was still stuck trying to get her laptop to work which she later found out wouldn't have happened no matter what they tried. It was a bad computer and had to be replaced. I took Momma home around 9:30 and everyone else stayed at the loft until around midnight.
It was such a great visit and we can't wait to see them again.
Wednesday, October 8, 2008
Momma had her weekly blood draw this past Monday and the doctor called with her numbers yesterday. Her platlets are at 31,000, her white blood count is 19.9 and her hemoglobin at 11. So we are good for a couple more days--we have no nose bleeds right now which is a good thing.
Yesterday was a LONG day for me. Loretta and I did not get back from Arizona until 11:30PM Monday night and by the time I made it home and bed it was 1AM. I worked from 8AM to 6PM, had a hair appointment at 6PM, picked up dinner at Quizno's, ran into Walgreens for some gauze and then home. Momma was so hungry by the time I finally got there--but she was a real trooper about waiting.
Jeff had his biopsy yesterday so he was on the couch asleep(thus the need to pick up gauze at Walgreens)when I got home. I took his sandwich and a soda down to him so he didn't have to move too much. Momma and I ate while watching the newest episode of NCIS. After dinner, I did two loads of laundry, prepared my coupons for the week (love the grocery game website!!) and watched some of the Presidential debate.
At around 10:30PM, Jeff said that he would kill for a big soda and I was thirsty as well. So we took Ali and went up to Quick Trip. We grabbed sodas for all of us along with donuts for Jeff and Momma and a honeybun for me. We pigged out and then I got ready for bed.
I started reading "Eat, Pray, Love" last night. My sister-in-law gave me this book at Christmas along with a wonderful handwritten note. I only read the first three chapters last night but I really enjoyed what I read.
So today I was on Ali Edwards blog ,http://aliedwards.typepad.com/, and she is offering a set of stamps. To win you have to leave a comment telling her something good about today. Here was my comment:
Reasons that today is a good day:
The sun is shining but it's a cool brisk day
I have great hair today (happy hair as I call it)
My MIL told me that I looked really nice when I left for work
I was able to get the kitchen picked up before I left this morning
I made plans for lunch on Friday with a friend
What is good today for you? Leave me a comment and let me know.
Tuesday, September 23, 2008
A LOT has gone on since my last post. Momma went back to Litchfield for her class reunion--her 66th I believe. Tracy and Christie took her and they said it was a lot of fun. There were only 25 people there--all that is left of her class from what I understand. Given their age the reunion was actually a lunch---when you reach the age of 83 you have to be home early for bed (or the age of 34 for that matter :>) )
Momma spent the weekend in Hillsboro with Christie while Jeff and I went out of town.
Jeff and I went to Indianapolis for the Moto GP race. We left on Saturday morning EARLY and drove straight to the Speedway. I felt like I was at a mini Sturgis with all the motorcycles (although there were no scantily clad woman which is a staple of Sturgis). We spent the day walking the Speedway, looking at the manufacturers displays and watching qualifying. That evening we went to the fairgrounds for the flat track race which was SO much fun. It was a great race and even though I had no idea who the racers were I was still very excited for the winner. On Sunday, we went back to the Speedway for the actual GP races. We woke up to gray skies and knew that we were going to be battling the weather. We scouted out our seats in the grandstand and settled in. It wasn't long before the rains came in, followed by the wind. At first it wasn't too bad--I had bought two rain ponchos and we were staying pretty dry. Then the rain and wind became a big swirling mass and "I had a feeling I wasn't in Kansas anymore.." We took shelter under the grandstand with everyone else and waited for about an hour before it died down. Back up to our seats we went to watch the main event--determined that we were stronger than the weather. There were HUGE puddles of water on the track that the facility was diligently trying to dry out. Finally, the race started and our "local" boy, Nicky Hayden was leading. It was a 28 lap race, the track was still wet, the drivers were doing between 130-180on MOTORCYCLES when the rain and wind came back. I was hunkered as far down into my poncho as a I could go cheering on Nicky. The wind blew a manufacturer's tent down in the infield, it started whipping things out of the grandstands onto the track and it ripped a barrier off of the wall and the race was called with 8 laps left to run. Mother Nature won the battle. We drove home after a stop at Cracker Barrell for some WARM food.
When we walked in our door at about 9:30PM, we were met by Indy who was meowing frantically. She had clawed up the carpet at the door and when we walked in we knew why. With all the rain Glen Carbon had taken that day, our basement had flooded, on the finished side. So we ended our trip with a night spent moving furniture and running a shop vac. I felt so overwhelmed when I stood there surrounded by wet carpet and wet everything. I was waiting for Jeff to yell out of frustration and I am was torn over whether to file an insurance claim.
I set to work and just felt God's peace--as if he were saying "I'm in control, there is a reason". I went ahead and filed the claim even though I didn't know how we were going to pay the deductible. I guess that's called faith. It turned out that our insurance company had declared the state of Illinois a catastrophe. This means that our claim was not surchargable. Jeff worked dilligently for two days and we felt like we had saved the carpet, drywall, etc. I called back into our claims department to cancel the claim. My adjuster advised me to leave it open. Due to the amount of claims, the mitigation and the damages they were not even inspecting all the properties. They asked me some questions and stated that they were mailing me a check for the limit of my coverage with the deductible waived. I looked to Heaven and thanked God. He did have control, He knew tht financially were in a place were we needed some help and I stepped out in faith which He rewarded.
I was reading my devotion this morning and it was about the invalid who was laying on the mat next to well of healing. In the Bible, it says that Jesus went to the man and asked him if he wanted to be healed. The man replied that he did but that he had no one to carry him to the waters and someone always made it there before him. The devotion asked if we were stuck on our mat---maybe feeling sorry for ourselves, feeling like we were in a hopeless situation, giving up on life. This man was on the mat for just that time--when Jesus would come up to him and ask him if he would be healed. You may be on a mat right now but don't despair---trust and know that Jesus knows where you are and you are there for a purpose. Live life to your fullest while you are on your mat and before you know it, Jesus will heal you of whatever affliction has caused you to be there. Soon you will be carrying mat and taking a new path that God has already laid out.
Have a blessed week!!!
Tuesday, September 9, 2008
The book is a historical fiction novel about a ten year old girl who was arrested with her family in the 1942 Vel'd'Hiv roundup. I had never heard of this event but apparently it is "the most notorious act of French collaboration with the Nazis".
The girl has a secret that connects her to a modern day family in Paris 2002. The story was very well written and I just couldn't put it down once I started reading it. There were places where I felt like I knew what was going to happen but then the author took it down a different path.
Needless to say I didn't sleep much last night :>) I had had a killer migraine the night before and hadn't gotten much sleep. Once I was home last night, I made dinner and then curled up on my bed to watch the Packers/Vikings game. I fell asleep between 8 and 8:30 and woke up when Jeff arrived home at 10:30. I was awake then so I grabbed the book and started in. I finally put it down at 3AM and brought it to work so that I could finish it. I just had to find out what happened!!!!
I hope you enjoy it as much as I did!!!
Sunday, September 7, 2008
I was afraid we were going to have to go in the rain much like the last time I took her. However, by the time we arrived the sun was shining and the day was beautiful.
I hope you had a wonderful Sunday.....
Thursday, September 4, 2008
Last weekend was great with the start of college football but tonight the games are for real. The Redskins vs the Giants. I am not a Giants fan so I will be rooting on the Redskins. My beloved Buccaneers play the Saints on Sunday.
Those who know me will know not to contact me tonight unless it's be text message. I will be sitting on the couch with taco dip, chips and a big glass of iced tea. Tomorrow I will probably be hoarse from screaming at the TV.
What fun!!! Fall is officially here!!!
Wednesday, September 3, 2008
Are you, like me, hunkering down in your boat hoping that the storm will end? Have you, like me, forgotten that our Heavenly father can calm the storm if we would but ask?
It hit me smack dab in the middle of my forehead last night. My dad went back home yesterday after visiting us for the week. He had been such a help and such a joy to Momma while he was here. My day at work was tension filled---so many clients needed so many things ASAP and we were at the mercy of other brokers. I arrived home to find just Momma. She was weak, her nose was bleeding, she was frustrated and she was depressed. Her platlets were at 11 yesterday which means another transfusion today. Jeff was no where to be found and when I asked her where he was she said that she thought he had gone to Home Depot.
I putzed around the house feeding the dog, emptying the dishwasher, going through the mail and still no Jeff. Finally I called his cell phone and he said that he was on his way home. He came through the door with a downtrodden look on his face. I asked if he was OK and he waved the question off. He went downstairs to the family room and I followed. I asked about dinner and he said that he didn't care. All night he projected a cloud of unhappiness.
I sat upstairs with Momma, watching TV and doing word find puzzles. In my mind, I was running through scenarios trying to figure out what could have made him so depressed. I turned the page in my word find book and the subject of the puzzle was the book of Ruth.
I paused and said to Momma how much I enjoyed this particular book of the Bible. I felt God urging me to pick up my Bible and read Ruth's story again. So I completed the word find, picked up my Bible off the shelf and curled up in my bed to read her story.
Ruth was married to one of Naomi's sons. Naomi's husband and sons passed away and Naomi urged her daughter-in-laws to return to their people. Ruth, however, refused to leave Naomi. She says " your people shall be my people, your lands my lands, and your Gods my Gods. Where you lead I will follow". Ruth was dedicated to the well being of her mother-in-law.
I felt like God smacked me in the head and said ---you are doing what I want you to do. You are on the path that I have chosen for you. Your marriage may not be full of happiness and joy but I brought you down this path for this moment in time. He knew that Momma would need this special care at this moment in her life. He knew that I was the one He had chosen to provide that care. I closed my eyes and breathed a prayer that God would give me wisdom and that I would always remember that He is in control.
My boat is still rocking this morning but I know that I am safe because God is directing my path.
If you feel like your boat is rocking, take some time to listen--really listen---to what God maybe saying to you. Even in the hard times, God has hand upon you and if you let him He will direct you to where you are supposed to be.
Wednesday, August 27, 2008
Randy, Loretta and Sofie came over on Tuesday night. We grilled burgers and brats, called Tracy to wish her a happy birthday and just enjoyed each other's company. I really look forward to these Tuesday nights. Loretta and I get along so well---she is a true kindred spirit, Jeff and Randy do their thing, we all love on Sofie and Momma (Jeff's mom for future reference) just basks in the joy of having her family near. Loretta and I took Sofie for a walk and while Loretta was getting out the stroller Sofie took some time to indulge in one of her passions...rocks
Friday night I met up with the girls at Scrapbook Cafe and cropped. I managed to finish two layouts of Jackson and cut out the pieces for my Pine Cone Press project. Saturday, Momma and I went over to St. Louis. We had lunch with Randy, Loretta and Sofie and then went to the History Museum for the World's Fair Exhibit. I came home, made Dad's birthday cake and waited for mom and dad to show up.
We all went to LaFonda for Dad's birthday dinner and then it was home for cake and presents.
Jeff and I gave him a portable DVD player. Dad's spends a lot of time out in the garage watching the people drive and walk by. This was the perfect gift because it allows him to play his CD's or DVD's while he is outside. I knew that it was perfect when he gave me an unexpected hug--the kind where you throw your arms around the person and squeeze with happiness.
Sunday, my mom and I attended a Longaberger luncheon and then mom went back home. Dad is staying with me for the week. Thank goodness because Monday was the day from HELL and if Dad hadn't been here it would have been worse.
We made it through Monday and so far the week has been good. Momma went to the doctor yesterday. There are no major changes which is good. I had Pine Cone Press class last night and Randy came over to spend time with Jeff.
Dad and I had one on one time this morning over breakfast and tonight I am getting my hair done.
Today I am thankful for the little things like unexpected hugs. Look around you for the little things that make you smile.
Sunday, August 17, 2008
Carson starts first grade ----I could just cry and I'm not even his birth mother.
So here is the card that I made I for him.....
I was happy with it until I added the rub on "Back to School" at the top. I should have applied it to a white piece of card stock and then affixed it to the card. I LOVE the Tigger though. I was trying to find a stamp to fit the theme and was coming up blank. I stumbled across this Tigger and he just looked like he was marching off to school. So I gave him a little love, cut him out, used a black jelly roll pin on his stripes and then colored in the rest with a blender pen and SU Groovy Guava ink. Carson's mom would be so proud of my pen skills :>)
Delaney starts Preschool....not as major but still very important.
Delaney is our animal lover, so this is her card.....
I am MUCH happier with this card...I should be since it took my two days. The background is stamped with polka dots, I included Delaney's two favorite "friends" butterfly's and ladybugs, and , of course, the stamps of the two girls. The inside says " Have fun in preschool and make lots of friends". I know she will.
Love your children because they grow up so quickly.....
Tuesday, August 12, 2008
"I decided to make this little spiral-bound book to write down some of my favorite verses. My mom shared one of her favorite verses with me yesterday. It really spoke to me as I continue on this creative journey so I decided to make it the first entry in my book. It's 1 Peter 4:10:
"Each one should use whatever gift he has received to serve others, faithfully administering God's grace in its various forms."
What really strikes me about this verse is what it doesn't say. It doesn't say "If you received a gift..." it says "whatever gift you have received". We have all received gifts from Him... special and unique and it is our responsibility and privilege to use those gift to glorify God."
I gain a lot of inspiration from Taylor's creations but this one really spoke to me. We all have a gift....even if we don't think we do. How many times have you received the email survey from a friend asking you to answer a list of questions about yourself? There is always the question that states "what is your hidden talent" and most of us reply "nothing". This is not true according to God's Word.
Perhaps you have a gift of hospitality---you know how to make people feel welcome and comfortable in your home, at an event, etc. Maybe it's the gift of working with children or adults. Our gifts do not have to be "creative" necessarily.
Remember that we will all have a gift---embrace yours.
Sunday, August 10, 2008
My mom, my friend/sister Becky and I went to see Fiddler on the Roof at the Muny last night. We had gorgeous weather (it's an outdoor theater), great seats and the play was fantastic. I, of course, forgot my camera so I have no pics to show of us.
Jeff's mom was supposed to go but this is a transfusion weekend and to be honest, she just couldn't have made it if we had taken her. I started out the evening with a migraine (of course). Mom and I had a quick dinner at Subway, picked up Becky and then arrived at the Muny about an hour before show time.
Parking is such a bear in Forest Park where the theater is located that you have to arrive early. Becky hadn't been to the Muny since college so it was a great opportunity to just walk around and to listen to the Muny Kids sing before the gates open.
Gates opened and we went straight to the concession stands. Becky had watched a show on the Food Network about a St. Louis man who makes these ice cream cones that are dipped in chocoloate and rolled in nuts and then the whole ice cream cone is rolled in chocolate. The ice cream cone is only sold in St. Louis so we had to have one. She had that and I went on the mild side with a strawberry sorbet (it's made locally by the same man but no chocolate or nuts).
Off to our seats where we were met by a SWARM of bees. Apparently there was a soda accident in our row and the rows immeditately in front of and behind us, so they were drawn to the sticky goodness. As I am usually Ms. Prepared, I whipped out my baby wipes and cleaned off our seats. The bees were leaving us alone but were bothering everyone around us, so someone finally went for an usher. He came back with this can of "bee foam" and sprayed them all--at least most of them.
And then the real show started-----again, a beautiful night. The stars were out and there was a light breeze every now and then. The actors/actresses were great and the songs of course stick in your head for hours and days. I agreed with Becky that the ending was anti-climatic but then, what can you do????
So my words of wisdom today are:
1. Always come prepared for the POSSIBLE situations
2. Take time to enjoy time with those you love
3. Listen to your heart
Monday, July 21, 2008
Today is Monday, which means that it is blood work day for Momma. I don't have any results though because her doctor is out of town and the doctor filling in for her is in a satellite office today. So maybe tomorrow we will know where she is out as far as her platlets are concerned.
Yesterday was a quiet day around our house. Momma wasn't feeling very good--I think she was missing my dad just like the rest of us :>) ---although she couldn't tell me exactly what hurt. She just felt BLAH. So she took two naps instead of one. I washed her hair, did two loads of laundry, stayed in my PJ's all day and read. I'm reading a book that I received for my birthday called "Rhett Butler's People" and I'm really enjoying it. If you loved Gone with the Wind you will enjoy this look into Rhett and the people in his life that helped make him the way he was.
Jeff and I went to see the "Dark Knight" this past Saturday. We went to the 10:30PM show and it was sold out. You have to see it just for Heath Ledger's performance as the Joker. Everything that people are raving about is true--his performance is awesome. The movie itself I enjoyed until about 3/4 of the way through and then it sort of lost its way for me. I can't say too much because I don't want to give anything away but it is definately a must see.
We have a heat advisory here today--another 100 degree and hotter day. Thank goodness I work indoors!!!!
I hope everyone has a great week---keep smiling :>)
Saturday, July 19, 2008
I used Sahara Sand from SU for the main paper, Cupcake Paper for PP, a SU sentiment, twill tape and these wonderful "stones " that I just got from Sweet and Sassy Stamps. I also dry embossed some circles but you can't really see them.
1.You're not required to use cupcakes for the challenge, but if you got 'em why not use 'em!? :)
2.You're welcome to create something other than a card, just stick as closely to the sketch as possible and you'll be eligible for the prize drawing!
3.If you're uploading to Splitcoast use keyword TECC25 (for Taylored Expressions Cupcake Challenge 24 4
4.Each week, I plan to have a Featured Cupcake Sampler! The cutest and most creative sample from the previous week will receive the featured cupcake sampler honors. The winner will receive the sketch ahead of time in order to create a card that will be featured along with a link to your blog on Cupcake Friday!
5.Featured Cupcake Sampler this week is Donna from Serenity in Stamping!
Friday, July 18, 2008
Who would have thought that you could lay on a beach in Madison? I sure didn't but my BFF Kathi found this great beach on Lake Wingra. We spent several hours just enjoying our treasures (aka books) that we had scored that morning from the Half-Price book store. This beach was adjacent to a zoo, so we of course had to check that out as well. I will never forget this huge oragantang!!!!
It was a great weekend--a wonderful Summer Celebration (that's code for Kathi's birthday but don't tell anyone :>) ) We drove up on Friday afternoon, spent Saturday morning at the Farmers Market and the Half Price Book Store and then went to the beach. We went to the zoo and then back to our hotel for some rest and reading and then had a wonderful dinner. Sunday we headed back to reality.
I'm thankful for a wonderful friend who appreciates the same things in life that I do, the ability and freedom to read whatever I choose and the opportunities that each day gives.
Wednesday, July 16, 2008
It was so nice to have one on one time with my dad and breakfast is his favorite meal. We sat and talked about his friends, my friends, his work at the apartment complex and life in general. After breakfast, I dropped him off at my house and then I went to work. He spent the day with Ali (momma's dog) and Indy (my cat). When I got home from work, it was still just us. I grilled some brats, made some butter noodles and we had a nice quiet dinner.
Momma's platlets were at 2 yesterday but her white blood count is coming down and her hemoglobin is good. They gave her three bags of platelets this time instead of the normal two to see if she would be able to go a little longer between transfusions. The doctor prescribed her an anti-seizure medication for her headaches--the doctor said that it is the lowest dose of this drug but she wants Momma to take it and see if it will stop the headache. Her blood shot eye is nothing to be concerned about and she goes back at the end of August.
Jeff, Tracy and Momma got home around 9PM. I convinced Tracy to stay instead of driving back home and we all pretty much were in bed by 10:30PM.
I am thankful for my daddy and the bond that we share, I'm thankful for Tracy and her willingness to drive to our house and then to Hillsboro for momma's transfusions and appts. and I'm thankful for the quite moments that we are given every day. These moments sometimes are fleeting but they are precious because they allow us the time to reflect.
Sunday, July 13, 2008
My mom went back home today and my dad is going to spend the week with me. Mom said that she needs a break :>) She and dad are both laid off right now and she is not used to having him around 24/7. I'm looking forward to having some one on one time with my dad.
Jeff's mom had a headache again today. I gave her some Tylenol and after a couple of naps she seemed to be doing better. Her right eye is extremely blood shot and I'm not sure why---she said that it hurts and I imagine that it does.
We watched Extreme Home Makeover tonight and the family was that of a blind and disabled 19 year old boy. It was so inspiring to see this boy who sees himself as able, not disabled. Which brings me to what I am grateful for today.....
I am grateful that I have full use of my arms and legs, that I have the ability to see all that God has created and given and that I can function without the aide of others.
Saturday, July 12, 2008
The first is my mom and dad's wedding anniversary. They were married on Christmas Eve and when I was young I always gave them a gift certificate for dinner. Once I graduated from college and they started spending the holidays with me up here, I always took them out. This year we went to Bella Millano.
The second tradition I started when we bought our house in 2004. This was the first time that my husband and I put up a tree. That first year, once the tree was completely decorated I turned out all the lights in the house and just enjoyed the lights from the tree. Every year since this has been my tradition. It is usually just me in the house and I found that it is a great time to reflect on the past year and what Christmas really means.
The next layout also has to do with traditions......
About the same time that we moved into our house, our friends the Cheathams started inviting us and my parents over during the holiday. We have dinner, play games and exchange gifts. The Cheathams have four legged children and we always make sure that Santa visits them just as he does us humans. This layout shows their "children" minus one cat.
So that is what I accomplished last night plus three layouts of my Christmas cards. It was a wonderful evening spent with my good friend Becky, an acquaintance and hopefully someday friend Brooke and Mary, the owner of Scrapbook Cafe.
My parents are here today. Mom and I drove to Hillsboro and had our hair done by Melanie. On the way home we stopped at Ice Cream Man for some Fat Elvis (gotta have it) and ended the evening with some Steak N Shake. My dad stayed with Big Momma while we were gone.
Big Momma had another headache today but her spirits are good and ,so far, her nose is not bleeding.
Today I am thankful for good friends who share a similar interest :< ), my parents and all they have done and do for me, and the unquestioning love of an animal.
Thursday, July 10, 2008
Her platlets are at 40,000, her white blood count is at 17 and her hemoglobin is at 12. The white blood count is still high (normal is 4-10) but hopefully the antibotics will do their thing and it will continue to go back down. She has an appointment with the doctor on Tuesday followed by a transfusion.
Her last transfusion on July 3rd was followed by a stay at the hospital. Her white blood count was in the 20's and she was not feeling good at all. The doctor initially thought that her pre-leukemia condition had developed into leukemia but on Saturday told us that she was wrong and that it was simply pneumonia. She spent the holiday in the hospital and came home on Monday.
We had a nice visit with Luke and Jen last night---they came and had dinner with Momma which meant a lot to her.
I don't have any pictures to post as I didn't take my camera with me on my trips back and forth to the hospital. However, I will have some pictures to post from my girl getaway to Madison, WI.
Today I am thankful for family, the ability to read a good book and the fact that Momma is home.
Thursday, June 26, 2008
Tuesday, June 24, 2008
My favorite--Peanut Butter and Chocolate, followed by Chip and Mint and Prailines/Caramel. I also came across something called Fat Elvis which is banana flavored ice cream with peanut butter and chocolate---YUMMY!!!
My mother-in-law feels the same way that I do about ice cream--whenever she is having a bad day I can always bring her ice cream and it perks her right up. Speaking of mom-in-law, yesterday was transfusion day. Her platlets were down to a 2 when we took her in but suprizingly we didn't have the normal nosebleed that accompanies such a low number. She was wiped out by the time she got home last night and went to bed fairly early.
My cousin-in-law, Lisa, called us from California last night. Her son, who is 7 or 8 I believe, is fascinated with the weather channel. He told her that we had had a lot of super cells lately and that she needed to call and check on us---isn't that adorable??? Lisa is wonderful to all of us but especially mom-in-law. She is faithful in sending cards to her, which always brighten her day, and in calling occassionally just to say Hi. Those little things mean so much, especially to someone who spends the majority of their time at home.
Three things I am grateful for today----ice cream :>), the thoughtfulness of children, and the sunshine.
I know that most of you may not have a google account to add comments to this blog. However, if you do want to comment you can also email me at firstname.lastname@example.org
Sunday, June 22, 2008
There are only four more areas to go before the entire thing is complete--so maybe four weeks???
I had the BEST day today. I met a girlfriend for lunch at Lotta Watta Creek--YUM and then we went to Borders where we just browsed and chatted over coffee. I could just feel the stress drain out of my body. Sometimes we not only need time for us but girlfriend time as well.
I read somewhere ( I know I do a lot of that but I'm home a lot with my mother-in-law) that we should meditate everyday on our blessings and list three things that we are grateful for that day. So today I am grateful for:
Good friends, the fact that I have a little extra money to enjoy a great meal out, and my cat Indy (she always makes me smile).
Saturday, June 14, 2008
Thursday, June 12, 2008
Yes our air conditioner unit did go out but the repair man was able to replace the motor instead of the entire unit. A small thing but a GREAT blessing. I had a manicure/pedicure this past Thursday night. A small indulgence but one that always makes me smile. There is just something happy about manicured feet and toes :>) I had a weekend with no where to be, no obligations, nothing on the calendar. I was able to finally plant flowers in my planters--a small accomplishment for some but HUGE for me. I spent Saturday morning at the Farmers Market with my sister-in-law and two nieces. What a wonderful time and what wonderful produce I scored for only $10! Finally, my mother-in-law had her blood work done today and her platelet number was 115,000. That is a MAJOR accomplishment because we haven't been in triple digits for over a month.
Little things, small miracles, seeds of happiness---they occur in our lives every day if we just take the time to recogonize them. What little things are you grateful for?
Wednesday, June 4, 2008
SO much has happened since my last blog---thus the lapse in time. First there was Mother's Day, then my nousin (cousin who is more like my nephew) graduated from high school, my brother-in-law and his family moved back to St. Louis, Memorial Day, and I ended the month by helping a good friend with a Longaberger basket sale. MAY MADNESS!!!
I was hoping for a Joyful June when our airconditioner quit working---so now we are in the process of replacing it. I am still telling myself that June will be Joyful.
I have pictures to upload of the graduation card that I made and of the Mother's Day card but I haven't yet figured out how to do it. As soon as I do though, I will share with you.
I hope that you have a Joyful June
Friday, April 25, 2008
My day at work had been hectic, my personal life had flooded into my 9-6 and I was trying to balance my clients and scheduling my mother-in-law's platlet transfusion. My saving grace during the afternoon was the thought that at 7PM I would be getting a manicure and pedicure. Six o' clock came and I headed home for my much needed zen.
My friend Rachel was already at my house giving my mother-in-law a manicure. I did the usual routine of changing clothes, taking out the dog, etc and then it was my turn to be pampered. I soaked it all in and was thinking that once my zen treatment was over, I would head down to my scrap room and try to finish up some projects.
About 9PM, I headed downstairs and heard the sump running. And running and running and running . I knew this sound and knew it was bad because we had been through this before. The switch on the pump gets stuck and it will run until it burns itself up. So I called my husband for direction. After trying to bang on the casing to release the switch and trying to jimmy the handle, he said I needed to go buy a new pump. Good in theory except Sears, Lowes and Home Depot close at 9PM----I really believe that one of them should be like Walgreens and stay open 24 hours for emergencies. So it was back downstairs where I would let the well fill up, I would plug in the pump and let it drain and then unplug it and start all over again. So much for my zen.
Being one to always try and find a positive--I was able to finally clean and organize my scrap room. My husband had just put up two more shelves for me, so I organized my area into a card making station, a scrapbooking station and a gift station. I felt like I could conquer any project once I was done:>)
I woke up this morning to happy toes and fingers. I love looking down at freshly pedicured toes and Rachel always does some type of nail art for me. This time it was simple flowers but it makes me smile every time I look at down at my feet.
So what makes you happy or provides your zen?
Thursday, April 24, 2008
I start every morning by checking out the blogs of some of my favorit scrappers and paper crafters. So I took a leap this morning and decided that I would create my own blog. Since I am at my 9-6 job right now, I have no pictures to post but I promise that I will add those soon.
I am a 34 year old novice scrapper/paper crafter. I started out with stamping about ten years ago and then put it away after a few months. Then about a year ago, my friend Becky got me started on scrapbooking. This led to a love of card making and it was all downhill (or uphill depending upon how you look at it) from there. I joined a Pine Cone Press Club group in December of last year and have felt my confidence level grow since. Our leader, Pam, says that everytime she sees something I have done she thinks "Jessica's blooming" which is exactly how I feel.
I have found my inspiration through Becky's pages, Pam's ideas, a blog title inkastamp, our local scrapbook store--Scrapbook Cafe, and life in general. Since scrapbooking, I find that I appreciate and notice the little things in my daily life even more.
What inspires you?