Wednesday, November 26, 2014

What's been going on for the last 18 months... It's a doozie.


Where does time go? It's been so long since I've blogged... It kind of got to the point of it's been so long, what's another day, or week, or month... So much has happened since the last post. May 14, 2013. Well over a year and a half. Today seems like a good day to talk. My husband, me and our daughter - she was 7 then, we decided to seriously get busy about potentially moving full time to the North Georgia mountains. We had a 2200 sq foot house plus a storage unit and we began packing up personals, declutter, store stuff away and get to painting and fixing up our house in Spring Hill, Florida. I was annoyed we were doing things that we should have done years prior and enjoyed the fruits of our labor but pressing on anyway, got the house ready for show in June 2013. While it went on the market, we took off for three weeks and enjoyed some R&R at our cabin in Blue Ridge, GA. Our home went under contract 48 hours after hitting the MLS! Did we rush home to finish packing? NO! We stayed at our cabin and went tubing, enjoying wonderful evenings on our deck watching the lightening bugs (aka: fire flies), and enjoying the still hot but much milder summer in the mountains. We get home and we have 6 (SIX!!) days to pack up the house and get out. To say I was totally drained and full body sore was not even coming close to describing. OK, so we get everything out, filled up a 53 foot 18-wheeler and we packed up the cat and went back to our cabin. A few days later, the truck arrived and we put everything we owned in 3 storage units not far from our cabin. June 2013 I went on a full time job hunt looking for our dream home. Found it, a bit out out of our price range, back and forth for months with the owner's realtor, and finally, on 11/25/2013, we closed on THAT house! We had our very first Thanksgiving in our new home the following day. Pushed boxes out of the way but we made the best of it. So months following were spent unpacking, organizing, donating stuff (why did I bring so much from Florida???) We had Christmas in our new home 2013. We had some birthdays. We had some deaths... Deaths.... yeah. That threw a huge monkey wrench in this thing we call life. Two weeks after we moved out of Florida in June 2013, my stepmom was really sick. Thought she had the flu, or bronchitis... My dad took her to a walk in clinic and they told her to go to the ER. She was admited to the hospital and 48 hours of being there, got up to go to the bathroom and fell over dead. Since she was hooked up to moniters, they rushed in, did CPR, got her going again and she was in ICU for 5 weeks. She was on full life support. The tube down her throat got changed out to a trach (hole in your throat) since the tube ventalation wasn't to be in longer than 2 weeks or else it starts to do major damage to your throat. Then... she slowly started to ween off of life support! I had taken several drives down to Florida (10 hours from door to door). I wanted to see her. I wanted to take care of my dad. It was a tough time. Then my stepmom started to TALK again! I couldn't believe it. She was getting up in the chair. She was taking some steps. She was days away from leaving that place and going to a rehab center where they prided themselves in having patients up and out and back home in 21 days. And then, she coded. They brought her back. She coded again. And again, the staff did CPR and brough ther back. And then, she was gone. Thirty-five years in our lives and now she's gone. My dad's world crumbled. Life as I knew it was never to be the same. After she died, I made many more trips down to my dad's house. I cooked. I cleaned. I did whatever I could. In the end, it wasn't going to be enough. But, I got my dad to downsize on some stuff. I asked him if he would want to move up by us in North Georgia. He didn't like the idea of the colder weather. But he also didn't like the idea of being down there with us up here. Got his house ready and put it up on the market but he was stubborn. I get that from him. He priced his house so high, there weren't any offers coming in. Booked him a flight in Feb. 2014, arranged for a shuttle service to pick him up at home, take him to the airport, get him to his plane and he flew up here for five days. Checked out the area. Looked at a little house right around the corner that was for sale. Tried to get him excited about moving. I know it was overwhelming. It was so tiring for me and I'm in my mid-40s. I can't imagine how it is at 70-something. He had a great visit. Loved the house and our almost five acres. Loved seeing his granddaughter. Loved my cooking. LOL He raved over my pork chops... then the meatloaf... then the spaghetti... and enjoyed the little country cooking restaurant in town. After five days, I drove him the 3 hours back to the airport (traffic was a bit hectic and took a bit longer). I dropped him off at curbside to check in and told him I'll park the car and be right back. I was able to join him being pushed in a wheelchair by an airport staff member. Got to the airside and they were boarding! We barely had time to give a kiss on his cheek, say good bye and he was gone. We laughted because he called when he landed and was already curbside back in Tampa, waiting to get on the shuttle bus (van, actually) to take him home. That was the best $85 spent! Round trip, he didn't have to drive, park him car, walk thru the parking lot, navigate any of the airports. I told him I wasn't even half way home and he would be home way before me. LOL He lowed the price of his house a little but still, no takers. Then my daughter and I drove down to Florida again early March. We thought it was funny since we just saw my dad in GA and now we were going back to Florida. We did some financial stuff. He got a will and trust drawn up. (The best thing he did for his family.) We had a great few days visiting. We talked just about every day. Some days were good, some bad, some really crappy. Then.... then it was a Tuesday, in May. He and I had a nice conversation. I told him we were going out of state to a wedding and I would talk to him by Sunday. We hung up that Tuesday... Wednesday passed. Then on Thursday, I noticed a bird's nest in the bird house he had bought for me when he was up in Feb. I had to call him and tell him. He loved birds and I knew he would get a kick out of the nest being in the bird house so soon. No answer. I called a little while later. No answer. His cleaning lady was scheduled to go by and she texted me at 3:30pm. She tried calling him that morning to remind him but he didn't answer. She didn't think much of it. He loved to nap. So she went over and no answer at the door. The drapes were closed. No tv noise. No answering of the phone. I thought it was odd that she tried him that morning, I tried him early afternoon, she was at his door in the later afternoon and he's not answering. I called my brother. He was working. Didn't think much of it. I was now sick with worry. I sent her home. A bad thunderstorm was going on now. It was 7:30pm. I called the realtor and asked if he would go over to get the key out of the lockbox to let the police go in and do a welfare check on him. It was a bit hectic because of the bad weather and he wasn't sure he would be able to access the key due to the restrictions on the lock box. All in all, the realtor got the key, let the police in and they found my dad. Heart attack most likely. My world was not the same anymore. I cry every day. I miss him. If you've had a parent die, you know what I'm talking about. If you haven't hug yours tight, tell them every day how much you love them. Took his home off the market until I could figure all of this out. The summer of 2014 sucked. It was a bunch of trips down there. Packing up what I wanted to bring home. Getting my brother to take whatever he wanted. Selling the rest - those estate folks were the only option I had. Emptied the house. Had his cleaning lady come one final time. I noticed some repairs that had to be done. What a couple of days and nights those were. But stuff got fixed. I looked around one last time. Closed the door and locked it. His house went back on the market, for a fair price. Not 12 hours after being up for sale, we were under contract. My daughter started the Third grade. My brother flew up to see the place, stay with my mom. I've been stamping and creating cards. Just hadn't posted them. I will though. Just having my new normal now. It's been so busy. No hectic. So emotional. But one foot in front of the other. Breathe in, breathe out. Life really does go on. I'm going attempt to label my past posts. I might just say "forget it" and start with new cards that I post. I have to see how that labeling thing works. If you're still reading, thank you. I hope to get back into posting more regularly now that THIS post is done. Until next time...

Tuesday, May 14, 2013

Mickey & Minnie Thank You

A thank you card from my daughter and me.... Her Mimi took her for an overnight stay at Disney's animal Kingdom Lodge and then a day at the Magic Kingdom to celebrate my daughter's 7th birthday. From the pictures, their "apartment" was amazing and there's never a bad day at the Mickey's house!

The one that didn't get away....

This is a big fish! I mounted him on paper that has the wood grain look. Colored him with Radiant Pearls (I haven't used them in forever and forgot how much I love them.) Stamped the sentiment on silver glossy to look like it's a plaque. :)

Thursday, May 2, 2013

Faux tearing

Got out the stipple brushes and after putting some torn painters tape onto card stock, just stippled quickly and stamped images. Quick but great look.

Thanks to my cat sitter

This card was so much fun to create. I stamped the cat and colored with pencils and Gamsol. I then took a dry embossing tool and on the back, made little circles all over to puff it out. The picture frame was carefully cut and added a sheet of accetate to make it look like a real glass window. The trees in the background were stamped anc colored before assembling the rest of the card. He totally got a kick out of this card!

Thank you 3-D flowers

Sent this 3-D flower beauty out to a dear friend for my thank you gift. I love curling up the flower petals to make them three dimentional.

Two special cards

Lis recently fell and broke her leg. She had to have surgery and rehab. This is a new stamp set I recently purchased. Colored with pencils and added Stickles for glitter. This lady is chillin' out for Rita's birthday.... :)

Tuesday, February 26, 2013

T2T Bedside Table now Cat Bed

I was driving home after dropping my daughter off at school and saw this and some other items at the end of this person's driveway. It turns out, his family was moving and couldn't take some things.... So he didn't mind if I did. The top drawer is broken and missing a knob. Rmoved the drawers... Also removed the bars that the drawers were sitting on... This is the top drawer that I took apart. I want to keep the front panel as I love the curves and will reuse it to hold the pillow in. Sanded it down.... Everything is now sanded down.... And added a bottom piece of scrap wood. I purposely left gaps on each side for ventilation. I painted it with 3 coats of black and then 3 coats of lacquer. I took an old bed pillow, cut it open, removed some filling, sewed it back up and used a pillow case but sewed it to be a little smaller -- making it more snug of a fit. The top view... Close up of inside... I hope my cat likes it. The pillow getting its makeover... Total cost: $3 in spray paint and $2.50 for using half of the can of lacquer... It was fun to create and repurpose this.

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

My BFF's new home & A Retro Bday card

A new home for my BFF. A retro birthday card.

Christmas style birthday card for my hubby

His birthday is right before Christmas and I just bought this stamp set and was wanting to try it... I love cardinals. Ran my cs thru my Xyron, added glitter, stamped image, colored with markers. LOVE the glitter of it all. A close up...

A stamper's t-shirt....

I worked a booth at the Stampfest show this past weekend and a woman came up to look around. I asked if I could take a picture and she said "make sure you get the back, too!" LOL This is the front of her shirt.... And this was the back of her shirt. LOL

Glittery tree birthday card

This card went to someone who's birthday is coming up. I used a stencil of a tree, moulding paste and sweet light green fine glitter. Love how this looks IRL. Edged the side with a gold paint pen. Layered on black cs. Layered on dry embossed white cs that I also added dry embossed lines before stamping saying in black ink. Layered on a nice matching green folded card.

Happy Birthday, sweet chocolate card

A sweet birthday card for Celeste. I cut out the jar, layered over the original image. Stamped the label again, cut out and adhered on top. Added Crystal Laquer to the jar to give it a true glass look. And a close up of the "chocolate" - which is moulding paste with brown paint mixed it.

Thursday, January 17, 2013

Thoughts of a baby & A surgery get well

A fellow stamper let us know that her daughter and SIL miscarried their baby. I made this card for them and their family and included a very personal letter, since my husband I miscarried our identical twin girls at 6 months along. It's such a tough time to go thru.
And I made this "upliftint" card for a friend who had to have his spine scraped. I hope he recovers quickly and it is helpful so he's back on his feet again.

Friday, November 30, 2012

Wine o'clock!

I bought these the other day from VLVstamps and they just make me LOL. The lady is stamped, colored and cut out. Then stamped again and colored and cut out her head and hands. I layered the hands on by running them thru my mini Xyron X. The head has a piece of Redline tape at the bottom and a pop dot at the top. Love the layered look of her head. Just like she's looking up at you. :) Her fingers I curled up just a little bit. The background is the Swiss Dots embossing folder but used the "smooth" side. This goes to a friend of mine with twins, a job, and a very busy life.

Sympathy Cracked Butterfly

A simple but powerful Sympathy card. Finished card is white. The butterfly I messed up as I ran it thru my Big Kick with the color upside down. But it picked up ALL of the imperfections (aka: cut marks) in my platform. At first I was really upset with myself, as the background is glossy cs with AI's. But when I placed the black die cut of the butterfly over the color, I really loved the look! ** You can click on the pictures to get a larger view (esp. the last one)