Friday, December 28, 2007

New Year's Resolutions...

**edited to add more resolutions** (on the last day of December I am going to preview these and let you all know how I did)

Do you make them? Do you keep them? I am a big "list" person and usually make some. I have learned over the years that some things just aren't going to happen, so try to be very reasonable with my "lists". Here are a few I have for 2008 (so far). This list is more for me than anything and a way to check in and see how I am doing. Ü

1. Don't over do it. (This relates to my back)
2. Learn to ask for AND accept help. (this is the hardest for me)
3. Do my exercises at least 6 times a week.
4. Send a birthday card to everyone in my family ON TIME. Ü
5. Organize my stamp room (this is on going)
6. NO MORE HOARDING!! Use what I have AND what I buy!
7. Alter at least two items (out of my HUGE box of things to alter) every month. That would be a minimum of 24 items by December. (yes, I have that many things that need altered!!)
8. Submit something for publication once a month (doesn't mean it will be published, but "you can't win if you don't enter")
9. RAK (random acts of kindness) someone at least once a month
10. Eat chocolate Ü (have to have at least one thing that you KNOW you will do LOL!!
11. Make items for sale for at least 3 shows.
12. Teach at least 12 classes at LSS if possible.
13. Do more SCS challenges.
14. Attend at least ONE of my friend Barb's workshops. Ü
15. Whittle down my scrap box-challenge myself to make cards only using my scraps.
16. Make 10 Christmas cards a month. This way I will have some ready for sale and ready to send out after Thanksgiving.
17. Make items for sale for LSS every month.
18. Get caught up on Benjamin's scrapbook.
19. Post more often on blog.
20. Make Christmas list in January and make/buy gifts throughout the year and be done by November.
21. Finish up things that I started and then didn't finish for whatever reason.
22. Bless someone with items I just don't use any more and don't think I will ever use.
23. Stamp with my "neglected" stamps (you know those that you just "had" to have and then don't use much Ü)
24. Bless someone at least 6 times this year with cinnamon rolls (if I am able to)
25. "PIF (pay it forward) 2008"-I have been blessed to win some blog candy, so I decided for this year, if I win blog candy, I am going to PIF and offer blog candy to you. Ü

I know I will want to add more later, but here is a start.

Winter Wonderland

This is what we woke up to yesterday. It was so beautiful, even the camera could not show the true beauty. This picture didn't even come close to showing the true beauty. Still learning how to use this camera.
Of the barn... This one shows a little better in front of the chicken shed... Here are two in the back yard, love how the first one turned out... Here is my favorite of an old paint can on an old box behind the chicken shed. Love the shabby chic look to it. Ü

Happy Birthday Aaron! & winner

Happy 13th birthday Aaron! Yikes, two teenage boys now in the house. I am feeling old. LOL!!

The birthday boy drew a number and it was number two, so the winner of the anniversary blog candy is:

Kelly's Artistic Journaling said...
Well... it sounds like you are indeed in a great deal of pain. I just want to lift you up in prayer right now because God is a God of Miracles, and a God of great comfort. Even though we do not know each other I know He hears my prayers and knows my heart as I cry out to Him for you. So I pray for you for peace, comfort and complete restoration and healing. He can do all things! God bless you with much love - to you and your family, Merry Christmas.

Kelly, please e-mail me with your snail mail address AND 2-3 favorite colors. Ü Thanks!

Tuesday, December 25, 2007

Merry Christmas!

WOW! What a white Christmas we are having. There was "suppose" to be a 30% chance of light snow last nite and 33 degrees today. We had no snow last night, 34 degrees today and then after dinner it started snowing and blowing. It is a very wet snow that is sticking to everything and very pretty. (ok I realize some of you readers don't think any snow is pretty, but it is beautiful outside Ü)

Today is my one year anniversary for blogging. I can't believe it's already been a year! The time has flown by so fast. A year ago today was a heart breaking day as a dear friend died of cancer. I miss her so much and have thought of her so often this past year. I have many things that she made me in my stamp room that remind me of her and make me smile and remember all the wonderful times we had together. My life was truly blessed to be called her friend. I miss you Kim!!

I have also had some of you e-mail me about what I found out at my dr. appt. It was discouraging news and I needed a few days to accept what they had to say. I was told there is nothing that they can do which was my worst fear to hear. The bottom two discs (S1 and L5) are completely degenerated with L5 also herniated. The reason my pain is so scattered (hips, legs, feet and different every day and even different several times a day) is because there is no fluid in those discs so every move I make causes pain somewhere as there are nerves in the discs. The next 3 discs (going up my spine) are bulging, but not to the degree to be pushing on any nerves that will cause major damage at this point.

He said to fuse (which I have NEVER wanted done) will very likely cause more pain. The recovery time is a minimum of 6 months and in my case longer as there isn't any good bone to fuse to. He did not recommend this at all, but if I say I want it done he will do it (and I do not want it done).

What I need is the artificial discs on the market and the insurance companies all over are denying this to patients for the first time in history even though it is FDA approved. There is one insurance company paying for them, but you have to be very skinny (which I am not) and you can't have any previous surgeries-which I have had many. Even if we found an insurance company that would pay for it, they will only agree to one and I need two.

So where does that put me? Between a "rock and a hard place" (dr.'s words) I am to work with my physician to find an anti-flammatory med that won't cause me to vomit, have hives or nauseau (which many do). I am now taking one that seems to be working (thank you for all the prayers!!). It says I can't take it for a long period of time, so need to find out what that means.

I also have to go back to the physical therapist to get more exercises to keep my legs strong. I am already having loss of feeling sensation and "jelly" like legs and I have to do the PT to keep from losing the ability to walk. I asked him how long before I wouldn't be able to walk and he told me that if I keep up with the PT and completely change my lifestyle (no bending, twisting, turning, lifting) 10 - 20 years depending on what happens to the next 3 discs. So, no more canning, gardening and lots of every day things that we all take for granted. I have already caught myself doing things that aren't allowed. It's going to take a long time to reprogram myself.

I have been having a feeling of lost identity as I feel useless. I can't stand for more than 5 minutes (and sometimes less than that) without being in a great deal of pain. I can't lift a pan of water and put it on the stove, take out something from the oven or lift a gallon of milk. It is hard for me to ask for help, but the boys have been really good about helping. I have already changed the way I do things the past 3 months just because of the pain. Aaron takes the laundry out of the washer and takes it outside and puts it on a chair so I can put it on the line (when it is nice out anyway Ü). Benjamin loves to cook and has been a big help when I just can't stand long enough to finish something. They do NOT like doing the dishes and I do them in spurts as I can stand the time to be standing. Our bed is low and making a bed is very painful as I cannot lean over to do it. We need to see if we can find a bed frame that is higher so that I can still do that task. Bruce helps alot too with everything. Please pray that I never ask them to do something that I can do myself. I know of people who live with chronic pain and they just give up. I refuse to do that and I don't want to take advantage of anyone. If I am able to do something, I need to feel useful to do that.

Well, if you read this far, you really are a faithful reader! LOL!! So to reward you and to celebrate my one year anniversary, post a comment here for a chance for some blog candy. I am not going to post what it is, but hopefully you will like it. I will draw a name Friday on Aaron's birthday.

Thursday, December 20, 2007

Dirty Dozen Penguin Challenge

This is for the Dirty Dozen challenge this month on SCS. Go to the gallery and type in DCP1207 to see what everyone else did.

We had to use a penguin for our main image, something "icy" and no blue.

I am off to the spinal dr. and won't be home til late tonight, so had to hurry and get this posted this morning.

Friday, December 14, 2007

Card file box

I am still here! I am surprised by the number of e-mails that I get when I don't upload often. Thank you all for caring and reading my humble little blog. I will try to do better about blogging more often. Ü

I now have a dr. appt set for the 20th. I was really disappointed when it wasn't today as I am hurting quite a bit and am ready to find out what can be done about the pain.

I have also been getting ready for Christmas. We are having my side of the family's tomorrow. Here is what I am making my mom. Inside are monthly file folders with the dates on the front. All she has to do is fill in the bd's & anniversaries and then put cards behind each month. Mom makes cards, so I don't know if I will have time to make any to put in.

Thursday, December 6, 2007

Paperbag album gift

I can post this one now. This is my favorite of the three that I made using this paper by Basic Grey. This was for my secret sister on SCS, Deborah Burgess. I had so much fun getting to know her and we will continue to keep in touch. It was amazing how much we have in common! When she told me the colors in her house (also the same as mine), I knew I wanted to design something special for her and this was my labor of love for her. I am so glad she loved it! Ü

Sunday, December 2, 2007


I got this idea from a note from my DSS (secret sister from SCS). She made me a card using the stamp set True Friend and mentioned that she was going to use the large image as a snowflake. I loved that idea and tried it last nite and here is what I came up with. The warm wishes sentiment is by Inky Antics. I case'd this layout from Papercrafts magazine also. I used the silver dots that my secret sis sent me on the dots of the stamped image. Very sparkly in real life (IRL).
I used Buckaroo ink which goes great with Basic Grey's Avalanche from the Fruitcake line.
*note: the size of the cards I made with the trees and here are 3.5" x 6.25" and fit in a regular envy that you mail bills in.

Figgy Trees

I got the idea for this card from Papercrafts magazine. A great way to use up scraps!

This is the first one that I did. I wanted to do something for ornaments for the tree, but didn't have anything, so I used crystal effects (hard to see in the scan). Then AFTER I made this card the mail came and I rec'd a lovely *elf* pkg (something that was going on at SCS) and in there were gold sticky dots by Stampendous. PERFECT for the dots on the tree! You can click on the photo for a closer look at the dots. They are so cool IRL!! I was able to make 7 trees from one sheet of 6 x 6 Figgy Pudding paper. You only see 6 here as I found one tree on the floor after I was done. I like the stitched look best, but needed to get some cards done quickly and it was late and I didn't want to wake the boys with my sewing.

Saturday, December 1, 2007

"The weather outside is frightful..."

sure describes today! We DID get snow (just a skiff) and we DID get ice!! Very thick ice. Now it's raining, so when this all freezes again, it's going to be even more nasty. The south windows are all frozen over, so there must have been a bit of wind from the south.
Needless to say, my class has been postponed until next week. It is full now, so no more openings.
A perfect day to stay inside where it's safe and warm and work on Christmas gifts, cards, etc. So I hope to have some fun things to post later. I need to make more of the candy cane candle jars, so will be busy doing that. Now that I have them designed, it will be faster doing them assembly line. The designing takes me the longest time.
Hope you are all where it's safe and warm today!

Friday, November 30, 2007

Paperbag Album #2

Here is another version I made. This *was* going to be the one I was going to teach, but just too much work and I have several first timers signed up, so decided on a simpler version (see previous post) for the class. I was also asked how many I have signed up. The last I heard (with cancellations and new ones signing up) there are 14. I have 15 kits, so if you live in the area and want to take the class, call Scrap Happens in Broken Bow. They have a list of the supplies that you need to bring to the class.

Papers used are Basic Grey's Fruitcake, ribbons are miscellaneous.

Front view

page 1

page 2
page 3

page 4

page 5

page 6

page 7

page 8

page 8 with flap opened

page 9

page 10

back view

Thursday, November 29, 2007

Paperbag album class

I have been working on some paperbag albums. I made three different ones and this is the one that I will be teaching Saturday (unless we really get the ice storm that is being predicted). Here is a picture of all the kits lined up on my table...
Front view
page 1 page 2

page 3

page 4

(a picture can tuck into the wintergreen color of the corner triangles. I used 1/8" red tacky tape for the two edges)

page 5 (the red tabbed piece comes out and you can add photos to both sides)

page 6

page 7

page 8

page 8 with flap opened

page 9
page 10

back view Papers are Basic Grey and inked with SU!'s Creamy Caramel. Ribbons miscellaneous. The three tabbed pieces on the ends are tabbed to solid cardstock for more pics or journaling.

Happy Belated Thanksgiving!

So much has been going on here. The day before Thanksgiving, I finally *gave ine* and agreed to have an MRI on my back. If you know anything about my history and how many surgeries I've had in my life, you understand my dragging my feet. I have been concerned that if I have the MRI and it's not good, then I will be told I will have to have surgery. But my *friends* (LOL) and family have tried to encourage me that if I have the MRI, it might be something simple (now that would be rare! nothing about me has ever been simple Ü). So I had the MRI on Monday and by the time we got home there was a message from my dr saying she had already gotten the results (see I told you...rare Ü). Anyway, seems I have "several bulging discs". She asked me to call her the next day to set up an appt with a spine specialist. I will be seeing Dr. Beard from Colorado, but will see him here. He comes to Gothenburg once a month. Not sure which day, but they will be calling me and letting me know. The Imaging Center sent home the CD of my scans and we looked at it. I count at least 5 bulging discs. At least I'm not imaging my pain. Sometimes I would think if I could just *relax* the pain would go away and it just never seemed to happen. So now it's a waiting game. I am still doing my PT at home. I am still in constant pain, but don't want to quit the PT in case I would actually be in worse pain if I wasn't doing it. I am still not agreeing to surgery, but am willing to hear what my options are.
Thank you for all the well wishes and e-mails I have rec'd concerning my back. That is so kind of you all. In the next post, I will show you what I have been working on. I am so thankful that I can sit and stamp or work on things.

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

more altered candle jars

Strawberry Shortcake Altered Candle

I have been having so much fun altering these candles. I made a few of the first one with slight variations. Here is a completely different version. I have two more to show you after this. I think each one I do becomes my *favorite*. Ü
Patterned paper is Basic Grey.