Thursday, October 29, 2009

Taking a Little Road Trip

   Hi Everyone!!! I know I have been absent more often than not these last few weeks. Since my sister started her chemotherapy treatments I've been busy helping her as much as possible and haven't had as much time as I would have liked for posting. I have continued to visit most of you and when time permitted left a comment or two. Visiting all my friends in blogland is a wonderful way for me to recharge my batteries, you have all been so sweet and supportive that my heart is uplifted with each comment you leave. This wonderful community is a great source of inspiration and support and I thank you all!
   My sister has a short break from her treatments now but begins chemotherapy and radiation on Nov. 16th for a six to seven week period. She has been blessed by all your prayers and encouragement and has had little nausea. She is however experiencing a great deal of pain and severe flu like body aches and is exhausted. Hopefully this little break will help and strengthen her for the next round so please continue to pray as I truly believe this helps!
   Since we are between treatments we have chosen to take a little road trip before the holiday frenzy begins. My youngest son is off from school for Teacher's Convention and it will be the only chance we get for a break before Christmas. I am hoping this little diversion will strengthen us all for the battle that is ahead.
   Although my time has been devoted to my sister of late I wanted you all to know how much I appreciate your support and while I may not be able to post as often as before I am still here and enjoying every visit with each of you!!!

                         God Bless You All !!!


Saturday, October 24, 2009

God's Light Shining Through Us

   Forgive my absence this week, I have been helping my sister as she begins her treatment for lung cancer. There were many a morning I wished to log on and lose myself in blogland and recharge my batteries while visiting all of you. God  was calling me to be elsewhere and I have learned from experience that when God calls it's wise to answer. I have been preparing myself for weeks now to be my sister's support system while she fights this battle but I must confess that there are time's when I want to take my toys, go home and not play! While there has never been a question that I would accompany her for her treatments there were times when I simply didn't want play this hand we were being dealt. Unlike in poker, you can't simply fold and hope for better cards the next go around.
   After many doctor's appointments, going over treatment plans etc. my sister had her first round of chemotherapy on Friday. She was there for over six hours while toxic fluids made their way through her system. She of course has been insisting that I needn't be there or stay for the entire time but I couldn't imagine leaving her to face this alone. I picked her up early for her appointment and drove her even though she kept insisting she could drive herself. She could have, and since the effects would not materialize for a day or two she could indeed have driven herself home as well. I knew that my job was moral support, to distract her if needed and to simply sit with her so she would not feel alone.
   We actually had a nice day, which seems strange to say, but we spent those hours talking, reminiscing and laughing. Yes, even while the reality of why we were there could not be denied we laughed, often to the point of tears! We had a good day.
   There were many other patients coming and going throughout the day. I couldn't help but notice that only two had someone with them and those people sat out in the waiting room. Over the course of the day we spoke to the other patients and of course had some of them laughing along with us. We even got the nurses to laugh.  I think many might even have enjoyed themselves, even if for a short time. From outside the room it would have seemed that there was a party going on. There was that much silliness! At the end of the day I thanked the staff for inviting us to their little shindig and told them we had a blast. They may have thought I was crazy when I told them we looked forward to seing them all again.
   There are times when God calls us to act on his behalf, to allow his light to shine through us. I believe that's what took place in that chemotherapy room, God was using us to remind everyone that there is still cause for laughter, joy and love, even amidst the fear, pain and suffering. We never know when God is going to call us to light the way for someone else, to shine His light in their path. For some people you may be the only light of 'God' they encounter in their day. Are you ready to shine for Him???

Monday, October 19, 2009

Who me ???

   I was away for the weekend and the last thing I expected to see this morning when I checked out my blog was that I had been awarded a 'Best Blog Award'.  Dear sweet LV from 'Thoughts From Meme's Corner' had included my little blog in her list of award recipients. To say I was surprised and humbled is an understatement!
  You see, when I started this blog a few months ago I did so after 'lurking' and visiting so many wonderful blogs here in blogland. I was taken in by the beauty, artwork and friendship that lives here. I was finding myself inspired by the wonderful people that shared their talents and encouraged each other along the way. I wanted to be part of this community and so I started my own blog. I thought that it would be a good place for me to share my artwork.That however has yet to happen, since I am still trying to learn my way around the computer and scanning, loading and sharing pictures is something I've yet to master.
   This blog has turned into something much different than I originally planned. It is a place where I have shared my thoughts, dreams and my faith. When I sit to write a new post, whether it be prompted by something as simple as Wishcasting Wednesday, following The Joy Diet or Spiritual Sundays, I always ask God to guide my words so that they might reflect His love. While my own personal ramblinngs unfold I hope that His influence shines through.
   Whether I am drawing, painting, sewing or stitching it is God who guides my hands. My 'talents' are God's gift to me and so I choose to share them. While I am honored to recieve this award I cannot take full credit for the contents of my blog. As with my art, God guides my words. If I am smart enough to get out of the way and to let Him lead, good things flow...if I try to take control then I fall flat.
   Thank you to all of you who have supported and encouraged me simply by reading and commenting on my posts. Your friendship means so much to me. Thank you to LV for an award that encouraged me to write today when I had planned on remaining silent. May God bless all of you and guide you always!


Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Wishcasting Wednesday

   Hard to believe it's Wednesday already, it seems like I just got through the last question asked by Jamie Ridler. If I am to be honest I must tell you that between Wishcasting Wednesdays and The Joy Diet I am finding myself full of raw emotion...this job of soul searching and excavating is leaving me feeling wounded and spent.
   I'm not entirely sure that this emotional roller coaster ride is what Jamie had in mind when posing her questions. Perhaps this is just happening to me because I am finding myself at a difficult place right now. If you have read any of my previous posts you are aware that my sister was recently diagnosed with lung cancer. More recent tests are showing it has spread to both lungs and lymph nodes placing her in stage 4. She will soon begin chemotherapy and I am trying to be a source of strength for her. While trying to remain upbeat I am acutely aware of the realities she is facing and I am finding this mentally and emotionally draining.
   I believe that whenever we are faced with our own mortality or that of a loved one we question what we once thought as truth. We begin to prioritize and realize what is truly important. I so wish I could go back to ignorant bliss, before I started digging for my truth. This inner journey I'm afraid is going to be  a painful one.
   When tragedy strikes, our 'serenity' as we knew it is gone, our courage wanes and we lose the wisdom to see us through the dark hours ahead. So today I wish to let go of my insecurities and to find peace once again. I wish to let go of fear and for God to grant our family and especially my sister the courage to fight this fight. Finally I wish to let go of the pain that the unknown can bring and pray for the wisdom we will need to see us through this dark corridor so that we may find the doorway to light!

Friday, October 9, 2009

The Joy Diet...What do you desire?

    I love the word 'desire' has a sort of sensual connotation, not sexual but sensory. Things that I desire arouse my senses, they can be visual or aromatic, they can delight my taste buds or be a joy to touch, they can be spiritual and make my heart sing.
   So what do I desire? The list can be long and ever changing, depending on what I doing. The sights of nature, great architecture, artwork all delight my eyes. The scent of home baked bread, pumpkin pie, or even a fire burning are aromas that make me smile. My tastebuds awaken to coffee, sweet summer fruit or even deep dark chocolate. Crisp cool sheets, cashmere sweaters and my husband's touch are a comfort to my skin. My God and faith in all He offers bring peace to my heart. I desire all things that fill me with gratitude for this wonderful world we live in and for all of God's gifts.
    While I am surrounded with so much that brings me joy I had a recurring theme in my search for what I desire this week. From the time I was a young girl to the present my heart has longed for a 'real' artist's studio. You know the kind, lots of space, beautiful natural light, ample storage and a great big farmhouse sink for cleaning my brushes. If not a fireplace then maybe a woodburning stove for heat and high vaulted ceilings. Oh, and maybe a loft area for daydreaming and cultivating my visions.
   I have used a back porch to create my art, a bedroom corner, a spot on the table and currently a room in the basement. This room is by far the most spacious I've had and the storage is pretty good but the lack of windows is something I find stifling to my creative energy. It's funny how as the years have passed and I have continued to create in less than ideal locations my heart still longs for that 'studio'...the one in my dreams.
   Will I ever get what I envision? I don't know. I only know that while other desires have taken hold of me , some fulfilled and some changing over time, this is ONE that is still the same, yet elusive.

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Wish Casting Wednesday

   Once again Jamie over at Jamie Ridler Studios has asked another thought provoking question, 'What do you wish to complete?' This question can take so many directions and lead me off onto many different paths, some emotional, some spiritual and some practical. It would seem my life has been a series of starts without any real fruition. How many times have I begun a course of action only to abandon an idea? Far too many to encompass in this small little blog I'm afraid. Don't get me wrong, some things I've set out to do I have completed...somethings won't allow you to stop mid-stream and go back, you must continue to paddle on to the end.
   I tend to overlook the successes and fixate on the 'failures'. So this morning I have had to stop and ask myself why that is? Perhaps because the unfinished is what leaves a longing my your heart. Something I dared to dream has not been carried out and therefore lingers, as a ghost to haunt me.
   Some dreams got pushed aside to enable me to concentrate on the immediate needs of my family and friends. Some got pushed down because I feel undeserving of the joy that persuing them may bring. Sometimes I quit before I can if the outcome is already known. The 'Negative Nellies' living in my head often drown out the whispers of my heart, telling me I can't do that, I'll never succeed, why even bother.
    My wish for today is that today's question would enable me to be brave enough to at least try, that in answering the desires of my heart I can quiet the 'ghosts' of unlived dreams. I wish to acknowledge that at least in trying I have answered the call of my heart  and that the outcome is not is in the attempt that I will grow. So beginning today I will choose the 'Paths not Taken'...

Sunday, October 4, 2009

Spiritual Sundays

Jesus said, "Come to me, all who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in your heart, you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light."
                                                        Matthew 11:28-30

Saturday, October 3, 2009

Another Giveaway in blogland!

Just wanted to give you all a heads up to a lovely giveaway hosted by Amanda over at . Amanda does beautiful work and has her own etsy shop you'll want to check out too!

Pumpkin Patch Primitives Quilt Shoppe: Freaky Friday Fun Giveaway, WK# 2#links

Stop by Pumpkin Patch Primitives as there is the most amazing giveaway going on. I have ordered from this shoppe and was delighted by the quality and great customer service!Pumpkin Patch Primitives Quilt Shoppe: Freaky Friday Fun Giveaway, WK# 2#links

Friday, October 2, 2009

The Many Faces of Diva

    Searching for the 'Truth' this week while following the Joy Diet I found myself realizing that I wear many masks. I dare say that most of us do. There are so many facets to who I am and so many parts that make up the whole Diva. Depending on where I may be or in whose company I am I carefuly select my mask and proceed to be the person that I need to be in that given moment. Sometimes a friend, sometimes a mother or a wife. There are times I am called to be a mediator or a teacher. Today I may be called to be a pillar of strength for someone, other times I am a bowl of limp noodles without structure. Sometimes a 'nice' person and sometimes someone with a stronger backbone when dealing with confrontation. You can well imagine that I have a whole arsenal of masks to get me through the day, don't you?
   Are the masks in of themselves a problem? That was where my search for the truth led me this week, to reveal my true identity to myself. I have realized that each of these faces makes up the whole of who I am, each one placing me in character for the scene in which I am cast. The masks are not  a problem per se, they serve a purpose. The lies, or opposite of truth, only occurs when I see myself as one 'character' and not a culmination of all  of them. Some masks, from my youth have been discarded as they became obsolete, still others wait for me to discover new aspects of myself.
   There are times when I don a certain mask to hide from something I may not want to face, or when I am hiding a part of myself  from someone else. That can be a problem. Does everyone I encounter need to see all the characters I play? Probably not, but I do need to be more honest with myself and with those I love. I need to be able to show them more of who I am, of course only God knows every aspect, even better than I know my self.
   When I began this journey of blogging I had a very different idea of what this space would mean for my life. Originally I set out to share my love of art and sewing with like minded people. It has become much more than that, it is a place where friendships have formed, where I share my faith and where I share my demons.
   This blog has been a safe place to open up what's in my heart and to be able to take off the masks. I hope that it will serve as a way for my sons to know the heart of me in ways that may not have otherwise been possible. It has enabled me to see that my parents were more than just my view on who they were. They were human beings doing the best they could and struggling with their own issues. Family members are more than what I see, they have hidden truths that are theirs alone. I hope that in searching for my own truth I will be more compassionate about the truth of others.