Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Seize Your Moments

Life has been so very interesting lately. My mother-in-law became a Hospice patient last night. She left the hospital on Monday for rehab and it was determined yesterday that she was unable to participate in the rehab plan of care due to her progressive decline in cardiac functioning. She will be evaluated this coming week for the next step. Thank you all for your well wishes. Only God knows our journey. We need to make the most of our ride.

I've been so immersed in my MIL that I forgot to acknowledge my one year blogaversary this past Sunday, April 26th. It is such fun to have this outlet and it has been wonderful making many new blogging friends. I want to have a giveaway because they are always a hit. I'm debating on finding something really unique, fun and pretty to give away, or to offer a gift certificate to perhaps either Michael's or Home Goods. My personal life situation right now will have to be my determining factor, so I will see how things go the rest of this week and whether I'm able to go blogaversary shopping or not. Either way, please check back with me. My goal will be to post my giveaway by this coming Sunday, May 3rd. Keep us in your prayers, please - strength for God's will. Thanks!!

Sunday, April 26, 2009

A Crafting I Will Go

I am crafting tonight and loving it!!! My life has been a bit nuts lately with my mother-in-law being hospitalized and all that goes with that. Looks like she'll be discharged tomorrow which is a good thing, but she can't even get out of bed on her own so we need to find a rehab until she's strong enough to go home. That's a whole other story.

Anyway, back to the good stuff. My mother's birthday is coming very quickly. Her name is Esther. I am going to embellish her initial "E" with buttons, pearls and silk roses. So far I've painted the letter an antique white. Tomorrow I'll get out my trusty glue gun and glue away and cover everything with glitter when done. One of our fellow crafty bloggers, and I unfortunately cannot remember who, made a very pretty wreath covered in white buttons and pearls. I thought a wooden letter would look pretty done the same way. Hopefully I'll finish it in time for my mother's birthday and I'll be sure to show you the finished result.

It's so much fun to make something!!

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Rachel . . . Again

I don't understand this whole track thing. I'm thinking it may be a South Florida thing, because they do things a little differently here, but I really just don't understand it.

About two weeks ago, Rachel had a track meet to determine who would qualify for the county meet. Rachel did not make it.

Today there was a district meet to determine who would qualify for the regional champs meet. I don't understand how you can have a meet for county champs and not make that, but then have a district meet for regional champs and make that.

Yep - Rachel made it to the Regionals!!!! That meet is next week in Coral Springs. They miss practically the whole day of school and I have to figure out who can cover me at work so I can go.
Rachel starts out slow and steady and sprints like wildfire once she comes around the last bend. She usually passes three or four runners in that last section. She's got a reputation for her phenomenal sprinting finishes. It just amazes me how she can go around four laps with such ease and dig so deep at the end to bypass half of her competition. Yes, I am very proud of Rachel!

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Just Checking In

This is where I'd rather be . . .

But this is where I've been . . .

My mother-in-law just got moved out of critical care last night and what a week it has been. She had a heart attack last Wednesday and things pretty much got progressively worse from there. Why is it that the minute you get into a hospital bed, things just spiral? She wound up in kidney failure - a result of the dye from the cardiac catheterization, most likely. Heavy doses of fluids would help with many, but with the multitude of cardiac and pulmonary issues my MIL has, she had congestive heart failure. Okay, so a little of this, a little of that . . . steroids to strengthen her lungs gave her an incredible rash, she also wound up with thrush and best of all - massive confusion, which led to another whole series of "stuff". But, she started rolling her eyes and tapping her fingers last night, so that's a good sign.

We're moving along . . . slowly . . . and I truly miss my life. Does that sound selfish? Okay, I'm being selfish right now. I do not like being on constant overdrive. Years ago, I thrived on that lifestyle. Not any more. One of my biggest pet peeves is negativity, so I'm not going to moan any longer. Just want to say I miss you all!

Thursday, April 16, 2009

Life Goes On

What a week! We had a surprise visit on Saturday night from my brother-in-law and his son, both named Mark. They live in North Carolina and decided to make a quick trip to us for Easter. It was such a pleasure to see them both. My nephew has been living with his mom in Illinois most of his life and only came to live with his dad last November. I haven't seen him since he was about 8 years old, and now at 18, he has grown into a nice young man.

Easter was wonderful! It's such fun to watch a bunch of teenagers going nuts looking for the hidden eggs with money in them (forget the candy)!! Guess it doesn't matter how old you get!!

It's always busy when out-of-town relatives are visiting, and we were all thrown a real curveball when my mother-in-law wound up having a heart attack and subsequent hospitalization. We've now been busy visiting her in ICU and waiting for test results. Fortunately she is at the hospital I worked at for many years and am still well-remembered, so I know all of the "back doors" to tap on.

Rachel's last track meet is today and while she did not make "county" as we had hoped, she's looking forward to this last meet. She's got a real positive outlook in that she has no regrets for not making it. She said as a freshman, it's not her time, and was happy for all the juniors and seniors that did make it. She told me not to worry about it, that she would be there when she was ready to be there.
So, things happen and life goes on and we try to keep up with it. It's times like this that I so miss the normalcy of my life, you know, watching Dancing and Idol, tossing clothes from the washer to the dryer, figuring out what I'm going to make for dinner, squeezing in time for the fun things I enjoy doing - like creating, blogging and reading. It is all those "mundane" things that really do give our lives value, purpose, peace and happiness.

Thursday, April 9, 2009

Easter Egg Garland

I received my Easter Egg Garland in today's mail. I was so excited to see the eggs I received.

Aren't they pretty? Jennifer at Artrageous Afternoon hosted this fun event. Jenn is a very together person. She is a mom, an art teacher, very artistic in all she does (go check out her blog) and she handled this egg swap with such comfort and ease.

We get different things from the different blogs we visit and we visit for different reasons. The end result, though, is usually always the same. We leave the blogs we visit with so much more than when we arrived and growing in any way is always good.

My one year blogaversary is at the end of April. Every year in our lives is full of changes and blogging has been such a positive change for me. I have met some truly wonderful women that have inspired me to be creative, motivated me to be resourceful, made me more aware of the beauty around me and encouraged me to visit new places. I've had proud moments, happy moments, embarrassing moments and enlightening moments. I wouldn't trade any of them. More than anything, this is fun!!

I never did a 100 post giveaway so I will make up for that at the end of the month. I'm looking forward to giving something back for all the good I've received over this past year. Stay tuned . . .

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Mind Wide Open

Should you get the urge to spark your creativity, be sure to visit Gail at Mind Wide Open. On the first of every month she offers an image and a word prompt for anyone to run with and then offer up in a challenge. I first heard about this site through Joy at Joy to the Blog. I've lurked at the site for several months and decided to participate in the challenge this month as I could not resist this image. The word prompt was "moments". I made this collage below in my sketchbook. This is my rendition of "Stolen Moments in Time".

I've only recently started giving myself the opportunity to explore different ways to express my creativity. When soaking up the sun in South Beach recently, I was reading, "Living the Creative Life" by Rice Freeman-Zachery. This is an excellent book that you should definitely check out. She talks about how everyone is creative, but not everyone takes the time to go further with some of those thoughts or ideas that pop into our heads at any given moment.

In all aspects of my life, I am trying to capture each moment and not rush through any of them. I have become so much more peaceful and content and I think a little of that came out in my contribution to the April Mind Wide Open challenge. There's so much stimuli that comes our way each day. I don't want to miss any of it.

Monday, April 6, 2009

My Easter Trinkits

Ever since I was a little girl, I have always loved holidays. I once loved the dressing up part of holidays. Now I love dressing up my home. Are these not adorable little bunnies?

This little arrangement is on my coffee table in the living room. Here's another view.

My mom bought these chicks and bunnies for me about thirty years ago. Geeze, that makes me sound pretty darn old. I guess maybe she was pregnant with me at the time. Yeah, that sounds good!!
This little bunny family sits atop my television armoire watching over us.

A co-worker handmade these bunnies for me at the first hospital I ever worked at in East Orange, New Jersey, ummm, back in 1978. Yep, older than dirt, don't I know it!

The tall bunny in the photo below of my dining room table was a recent find for me. I saw her at Home Goods this weekend and her poor little ear was off. Fortunately it was lying right beside her. I found a wonderful Home Goods employee who reduced her to $5.00. I'm going to encircle her ear with tiny pearls to cover the area, once I glue her ear back in place. She is a lovely addition to my collection of Easter goodies.

Here's a close up of the little bunny and chick egg holders on my dining room table. They're so cute, you just have to see them up close!
Have you seen The Farm Chicks new cookbook? It is luscious!!! This Easter basket I made in ceramics in 1985 and is just so patiently awaiting the arrival of the Easter bunny with lots of goodies for good little girls and boys. Hmmm. Do I have any of those at my house this year?

A couple weeks ago, Deb, our Garage Sale Gal, said something about a vintage plaid lunchbox. Turns out to be a replica of the one I carried to school each day as a little girl. I was pleased as punch when my purchase from Deb arrived last Saturday. It took no time at all to set up my new treasure in my kitchen. This lunchbox brings back warm memories from days gone by and cozies up my kitchen too!
I decided to enter the April Mind Wide Open challenge. There's no turning back now as I've already submitted my entry. Nerves and confidence rattling - can you hear it too? Wednesday is the official posting day, so I'll share my creation with you then.

I've been busy decorating and creating. What glorious fun!! We're supposed to have fun, right?