Saturday, August 29, 2009

Need we say more.

While I agree this video about teen foolishly texting while driving, they need to have one showing foolish adults doing the very same thing. This is very graphic, but powerful.

More Bad News

I have just returned home last night from my brothers burial. We gathered, brothers and sisters afterward to comfort each other and say goodbye once again. We spoke of the shortness of life, the gift of family, the good and the bad, the need to keep in touch and not take life for granted. We have so often put off getting together, we thought we had an endless supply of time. We say we will be better, we will make the time. I know we mean it now, but as time goes by it is so easy to take these precious moments for granted.
When I came home to check my mail and blog I read this. As you know Renee (Circling my head), my blog friend and her family, have been walking through hell. Renee has IBC (Inflammatory Breast Cancer) and her sister has a tumor (cancer) in her brain that has cost her the use of the left side of her body. They did not remove all of it and is undergoing treatment. Jacquie's son, Sheldon, has been in the hospital these last months with cancer too. It is a rare form, and he has had surgeries and was going to start Chemo.
Today though, things have changed. Today I read that Sheldon only has a brief two months left. Today my heart is heavy, and the loss of my brother seems pale in comparison to the pain this family has endured, and continues to endure. I have prayed, hoped, asked for mercy, yet today it is hard. I do not see the light at the end of this tunnel. I cannot fathom all this pain and suffering. So much for one family to bear.
I weep for Renee, Jacquie, my brother, and of course for Sheldon. I read of his strength and bravery and I am in awe that someone so young, a warrior as Renee calls him, can find a way to be brave and strong facing this journey. His courage gives me hope.
In her post linked here ( Three times Three no 8) Renee talks of a dream Sheldon had where he sits with his Grandfather on a bench. In it he knows his Grandfather has passed away, and is told by his Grandfather he has passed too. Perhaps he came to Sheldon to assure him that he is waiting to greet him, that it will be okay? In a way it seems to have given Sheldon a light at the end of his tunnel. His Grandfather is waiting, he will greet him and there he will find peace, free from pain. I do not know, but it has given Sheldon some peace.
I can only feel the pain here, loss compounded by two. Oh Renee I pray for strength, for you, for Jacquie, for me, as for Sheldon? He is my hero, may I be just a fraction as brave.
God Bless Your family.
For those who read this post, please stop by and join me in praying for, and with this family.

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Wonderful News, and the Mail

On Saturday August 22, Pat, my daughters boyfriend, took Steph out for a special evening. He had planned a nice dinner for her at a restaurant, and booked a room at the Royal Oak Arms. It was there he proposed to her. I could not be happier for them. About a month or so ago, I had met with Steph to have a turquoise ring we bought her last year sized, and broken locket she had repaired. I also wanted to stop in and visit a couple friends who worked nearby. One of them is Pamela of Pamela's Antiques in downtown Rochester. I love to look at all the beautiful antiques and the lovely vintage jewelry she carries. It was here Steven had bought my ring for our twentieth anniversary. The owner Pamela and I had become acquainted through a mutual friend. Pam is not only an authority on many Antiques, but a certified gemologist. She carries only the best vintage jewelry, and her prices are much more affordable than many jewelers.We spent some time looking at the earrings, pins, and rings. Pam was sweet enough to let us try on a few things. I found some lovely rose gold pieces (I just love this warm pink-gold), and it was there Steph spied a lovely vintage ring she fell in love with. That evening Steph had told Pat we had been poking around downtown and that she had met Pam, etc. Unknown to Stephanie and I he later called Pam and inquired about the jewelry Steph had been looking at. Pam told Pat of the ring that Stephanie had liked. With Pam's help, Pat picked out a ring. It is a 1930's setting and it is perfect. Later that Saturday night my daughter called she was crying, she was not sad but obviously very, very happy. They are planning a March wedding.This was such good news. I am so happy for them. He is a sweet man and they really love each other.
Congratulations Stephanie and Pat
Love Mom and Dad!
And now for something completely different........ In the mail today I received a small package. In it was this lovely tassle put together by Lori Anderson (Pretty Things). Lori does lovely beadwork, you have to check out her site. So imagine how flattered I was when she asked about my charms I made for a swap (previous post). I had one extra so I sent it to her. She graciously thanked me and asked about sending me something in exchange. Her work is so beautiful I could not imagine my small charm was worthy. I am still looking at it and just cannot believe she sent this beautiful piece. I love it! I feel so honored to have received such a beautiful piece of work. Thank You Lori, you were too kind.

Today I went to Flint with my dear friend Terri (TerrisBloomingIdeas). When my brother passed she immediately asked what she could do to help. So Monday night I called her and asked, "would you go with me to pick up Russell's remains?" Without hesitation she said yes. So we made the trip. She helped me find the funeral home, and on the way back we stopped to rest and have lunch. I have to tell you here how grateful I am for her today because it was hard keeping my thoughts straight. Too much going on here, burial, wedding plans, swaps I have to get done I am having a hard time keeping on task. After leaving Terri's I headed to Rochester to meet Stephanie. She was having her ring sized and we had a chance to look at wedding bands. When I finally arrived home Steven was there, and he handed me the mail. Along with Lori's lovely package I received a card. It is from someone who has just touched my heart. It has been rough these last days. You may have read below in an earlier post about my brother Russell passing away last week. I mentioned that he left no insurance, will, or no real money. We have had to pull together as a family to help give him a proper service and burial. What I did not share with you is that when Russ was admitted, and they mixed up my sisters phone number, it seemed no one told him that they had the wrong number and could not reach her. What hurts the most beside losing him this suddenly, was that I kept wondering if he thought we were not coming? He was in the hospital for three days perhaps thinking that no one cared enough to come. How would he know that when Kim got the call at 5:00 we had all jumped in our cars and raced to get to him? I had to drive 80 miles to get to the hospital, my sisters 55. It just breaks my heart that he was alone. It bothers me to think that he may have given up, stopped fighting, because he might have thought that no one cared. Then today I received this in my mail. Someone who did not know him thought of him, did this wonderful thing that has touched my heart. I sit here now thinking of him, and know that if this lovely person, whom I have not met has heard my heart and reached out to say a prayer for Russ then maybe he too had heard and knows we were there for him. I cannot express how much your kindness and generosity has meant to me today Stef (Glitterbabe). Thank you for this precious gift.

Great Giveaway!!!!!

Melissa at "Creating From the Heart" is hosting a fantastic giveaway!!! She is giving several wonderful items away just "because". Stop in for a chance, her blog is too sweet!

Monday, August 24, 2009

Today this lovely lady arrived. She has stunning red hair and pretty earrings and a heart charm dangling from her wrist. She has a sheer red shawl and the the longest lashes (I'm jealous). My swap partner "Kristen Cameron" in Nancye's Art Doll Group made her for me.
Her lavender eyes and pursed lips give her a slightly thoughtful look. Like she is remembering something and lost in the memory.
As sophisticated as she looks she hides a secret. Just look at these playful tights? Perhaps she is anticipating Halloween? I love it.As if receiving this doll wasn't enough look at this little guy. A sweet robins' egg blue fella to keep me company in my studio and guard my buttons. He looks a bit mischievous though doesn't he with that wink he is making. I will enjoy their company here with me. They are well made and it looks like Kristen might have a career making this little gems! They are so special!
Thank You again Kristen! You made this a great swap for me!

Saturday, August 22, 2009

My Brother Russell

I come from a large family. Three brothers and three sisters. The oldest is Russell. I was born a year after. Russ could be a real bear at times, he could be stubborn and loved to argue, but mostly he was good natured. He loved a good joke, being with good friends and loved his job. Although he never was one to admit it openly, he was very sentimental, he loved family gatherings, being at our homes, and took it very hard when our parents passed.
He would do anything for anyone, and as long as I have known him was a hard worker who loved to work and be busy. He was married twice, and had been separated from his last wife since last year. He had three children, was stepfather to two, and Grandfather of six. He loved children.
Russell was also an alcoholic. He tried to quit several times, and was doing okay for a while. He had his ups and downs and at times life just seemed to hard for him. He was always was sober when we got together. It was like he felt strong enough to say no when he was among his family and friends. He was the kind of guy everyone liked. His employers liked him so much in fact they drove him to rehab, got him odd jobs, included him in their family events. Russ was never afraid to help out, he never put on airs or pretended to be anything he wasn't. I posted this picture given to me today by his former employers wife, Gail. You see they had invited him to their daughters wedding. Gail even took him to get a haircut and suit to wear. When the bartender had not shown up in time, he took a tray and started serving. No one had to ask. He was just happy to be there, always happy to help. That was Russ.
I think it broke their heart to have to lay him off when the economy tanked. They kept in touch, and promised to take him back if things got better. They never got the chance. He stayed with us for Thanksgiving, and then for a time he stayed with our sister, Kim, and her family. He did not live far, but was difficult to reach him as his cell phone service was poor. He loved to cook and would often make dinner to take to the people where he used to work.
On Wednesday my brother Russell passed away. He was only 53, he was not drunk, there was no alcohol, or drugs in his system. What started with a cold, became pneumonia. Russ had COPD from years of smoking. and he had no insurance. He tried to take care of himself, and did not tell us. On Monday he could not breathe, and thought he was having a heart attack. he must have been delirious when he walked to the middle of the road and passed out. Someone called for help. When he became conscious they asked him who to contact. He gave them Kim's number, but he made a mistake on the last digit.
When they could not reach her they never thought to cross check the name for the correct number. When someone finally thought to do this, Wednesday afternoon, it was too late. They finally reached Kim later that evening. She called and we all raced to get to him. We were too late, my brother left us at 6:30pm.
It has been a difficult three days. Russ left no will, only a request on a statement indicating that my sister Kim was to be his beneficiary. My sisters and I have been running, filing papers, cleaning his apartment, making arrangements. His funeral was today, the service was lovely, his friends and family gathered and shared fond memories of Russ. It has been a long hard three days, with more ahead. He will be laid to rest Friday, we have to gather once again to say good-bye. I miss him, I love him, good, bad, all of it.
Good-bye Russell
Russell Ernest Glentz
September 29, 1955 - August 19, 2009

Sunday, August 16, 2009

Sunday Share New Finds

Time to share a few items I have found. Not all of them today, but I have finally had a moment to take the photos and load them here. First I will share these two "metal" boxes. They are not large, but very detailed and are weighty for their size. Here is what the side of the green box looks like. I has a definite Asian feel. Maybe they were going for a "jade" effect? They are really quite pretty in person. The inside of the green one is wood and the off-white one is lined with brown velvet on the bottom. Inside the green box was this. Okay I was really happy to find all these crosses and the rosaries in the box. I cleaned them all up. Then I noticed something "odd" about this large crucifix. Did you see it? Have you ever seen this on a cross before? I haven't. I thought at first it might be a cross from a Priests rosary or one a nun might wear. It is a bit larger than the rosary crosses, but that little skull and cross bones under the feet freaked me out a bit. An old Ration Coupon folder and a little photo feature booklet called the Pilgrims Photo's. Here is what was inside the ration book folder (black). The coupons and purchase records for two people. I better hold on to these, with our economy I may need them. A glimpse at some of the images in the Pilgrim book. It is actually just a series of photos I think that were featured in a paper. Perhaps the book is sort of a way of highlighting a photographers work? I found this neat old ledger. Hardly used but has a nice aged looked to the paper. A nice "chippy" piece I found. I have a couple of these chippy faces taken from either furniture or a mantle? Not sure but they were too cool to pass up. I found these a couple weeks ago. I thought they might make nice Cloches? but now not so sure. Pieces of fabric and such I have collected. Trying to straighten up before I start again. I need to get busy on my Halloween trades. I found another suitcase to store more of my "stuff" in (the green one). Steve is convinced I am moving out. (I had to stop the celebration and tell him "no" I was moving more stuff in). One more thing, a site I found: Someone beat me to this.... You have to check out this site. I had a good time reading and now know I am not the only one out there who is left wondering about some of the things that people make. I have often run across some odd items that make me ask "What were they thinking?" or "Seriously, is there a market for this?" Check it out, "Craftastrophe", and have some fun. Who knows you may find that one-of-a-kind item for that special person, a birthday, anniversary, wedding?

Saturday, August 15, 2009

Sneak Peak

I am participating in a Fan Swap (hosted by Sonia Crouse) and finished my Partners fan this morning. I thought I would give you a sneak peak. I tried to gauge Kathryns' style by checking her blog, but it was hard since she has not posted much of her work. I was luck though that she had posted a room in her home. So I used that for my color choices. I am going to send this out and perhaps after she receives it I will be able to post it here for you.
This was a lot of fun, but I am glad I only had to make one of them. I hope she likes it!

Saturday, August 8, 2009

Another Swap Finished

I am participating in a Tag Swap that Sarah Huckman is hosting. I had to make "13" Tags for this fun Halloween Swap. I just love Halloween. The colors, the fun part. While I enjoy a bit of scary, or such I am not into gore. I think of this holiday more as a fun thing for the kiddies. Free candy a day to dress up and have fun. So when Sarah put out the call for this swap I had to answer. I had put the ribbon thru the tops only to realize later we had been told not to. So I took them all out.
Joanns' had some of the cutest trims for Halloween and with their coupon well I just had to add the little bats.
I did not add a ton of glitter as I usually do, hmmm, I may have to go back and add some just not sparkly enough for me. I have time they are not due to the 28th, but I want them out Monday. Better get on with it then.
P.S. Please say a prayer for Sheldon, Jacquie, and Renee. I made a badge on the upper left column. If you click on it you can read why I am asking for your help.

Friday, August 7, 2009

First the Bad (Sad) News..........

I have been sitting here thinking. I read some bad news on my friend Renees' blog. Her nephew the one who was operated on for what they thought was a form of lymphoma has found out he has a rare cancer. The prognosis is not good. He is 25. My son John was 25 when he was diagnosed with Non-Hodgkin's Lymphoma. He is in remission. He, and we, are truly blessed. Poor Sheldon has received the shitty end of the stick, and yet he is handling the news with the grace and wisdom of someone much older and wiser than anyone four times his age. I feel for his mother Jacquie, she is battling her own cancer demon and must now face losing her son. I pray for them. I want to believe in a miracle for them. Then you have dear Renee, she has lived hand in hand with cancer for a while now, knowing that her time here is measured out. These are good people, this is one family, this is just not fair.
If you could please say a prayer for them, visit Renee's blog and let her know that they are not alone. I want to send a card. I want to let them know I am thinking of them, praying for a miracle. Do you hear me Renee? I am there with you , praying and hoping alongside you.
Today I received my last two tags from the Marie Tag Swap that Arielle hosted. The Pretty Pink one was from Deborah McNutt, and it is stunning. The Tantalizing Teal one is from Leslie.
Both these ladies arrived a little late, they had a little help in that department by the Post Office. It seems Deborah's was sent back to her (she accidentally had the wrong zip code on it), isn't it lovely though. Seriously well worth the wait. She even sent a little extra something with it. Thank You Deborah.
Poor Leslie's was delivered to the wrong address! I spoke to our regular Mail person and he explained that a temp had delivered it to "W" instead of "E". Same house number, different sides of the road. I have to apologize to her because she kept saying she mailed it out on the 24th, and I doubted her. Leslie this is lovely and I am sorry.
I also received this yesterday. It is my prize from the "Tatting Chick". The book has a DVD and there is the shuttle and thread, she even gifted me a beautiful tatted heart she made. I do not know her "name", but I love her blog. I am going to have to sit down now and watch and give it a try. I have always wanted to learn this, and with this great prize I am off to a good start.
Even the card was pretty, and just look at the tatted heart, I wonder how long it will take me to make one as well as hers? Thank You so much "Tatting Chick"!
I wanted to share my day with you. I was sorry to relay such sad news about Sheldon, with all these good things, but I am hoping that all you sweet and kind Blogger's will join me in sending prayers and good thoughts to them. I also want to again thank Deborah, Leslie, and the Tatting Chick, rays of sunlight on a very dark day.

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Flea Market - Garage Sale Goodies!

My latest finds out and about this weekend. Not a lot of things but some real good ones, like these yummy bits of rusty, bent up silverware waiting to be made into something wonderful.
Here is a little guy I am going to call "Luigi". Why? Hmm I don't know with the little mustache so darn cute. He looks like he should be on a Gondola.
LOVE this vintage Senorita! She is a larger Storybook gal. So cute.
Look at this beauty. After visiting Jodie LaJunes blog and seeing Sophie I just had to have a friend in my Studio too! She needs a name though, any ideas?
Great Finds! Steve put this lovely lady on a pole for me and I have to find a prettier base. I cannot wait to decorate her. I wasn't really looking for her (which is probably why I did find her).

Monday, August 3, 2009

Closing Shop

What to do, What to do..... I have decided to end my Artfire shop. I just cannot justify paying fees for basically "showing" my work. Yes people have looked, but no one is interested. I have given it six months and nothing. I tried to remain optimistic that it is the economy, or that it is a new shop (newer than Etsy at least) and does not have the following yet. However I have had up to 200 views on some of my paintings and no nibbles. I did not care for their shipping setup that does not allow you to estimate for international shipping (Etsy has the same issues). There may be many reasons why I was not successful, but I can't afford to keep paying for a membership that is doing nothing.
I know a few artists that have been more successful than I with selling online. I have shopped around these places and I don't think it was because my work was poor quality or unattractive. I have seen better, and I have seen much worse, so it was hard for me to understand what more I could do to make it work. For now though it just seems silly to continue. I will be closing Aug 9th.

Sunday, August 2, 2009

Reasons I should not be left alone in a "Stamp Show"

Here is it, the wreckage, from a day of crazy shopping at the Novi stamp show. I did my best to boost the economy with my own "stimulus" package. Sure I had a budget, (snicker-snicker), but like our government, I totally ran over it ( I wonder if I can get a loan from China?). I think my mind knows that I keep a reserve, for those pesky things like,... oh food and gas. (I guess nobody is eating at our house this week).
To Cliff at" Stamping Sensations", Jane, Kelly at "Our Daily Bread", and all the other vendors, Stampsmith, Stamp-la-Jolla, Stamp Camp, Lost Coast, Too Much Fun (got a great stamp there it says: "I laughed so hard, tears were running down my legs"), Stamping Fools (where I got the cutest Mermaid stamp), Thank You, we all had a ball. My sisters Kim and Cheryl, my good friend Terri, and I left with lots of goodies to play with.
Found these neat paper and sequin type flowers that you can put together to make pretty flowers for my work. I also found some neat packs of shiny-paper at the Paper-cuts booth. I made a card with some of the neat pre-cut cards they had.
I have a Love/Hate thing for Invoke Arts. I LOVE their stamps, I Hate that I can never get out of their booth without spending most of my budget there. In this years case almost all! Of course this booth and Ms. Paula Bests' booth vie for for my dollars. This year Invoke won, hands down.
Yeah and I also got these.....
One more item to mention.....
I won her giveaway and I am so excited about learning to "tat"! I was so excited to read this when I got home. I cannot wait! Please visit her site, she does the most beautiful work. You can visit her site here:
Thank You again "Ms. Tatting Chick" this was a great surprise and giveaway!