Saturday, February 26, 2011

Every Cloud Has A Silver Lining

At least that's what I have always heard. Although I must admit, it's not always easy to see.
So, while I am on the subject of clouds, I think this may be a good opportunity to share pics I recently took of some clouds. Also, it is as good a time as any to explain why I have not been staring much stamping with you lately- and why I am hanging on to the hope that there is a "silver lining" in this "cloud" I am experiencing in my life.

To be honest, I can't tell you too much at this point, other than the fact that I am currently going through a lot of medical testing to try to figure out why I have been having so much pain in my hands and arms, as well as some other symptoms. I am sure they will figure it out, and everything will be fine. But for quite some time now I have been having a significant amount of pain. Enough so that I have not been able to do much stamping at all. I miss it terribly, but at that same time I have enough else to keep me busy. Hopefully things will soon all get figured out, taken care of, and I will be back to my regular hours upon hours spent each week stamping away in my little studio!

So let me ask you this: What do you think of clouds? Do you picture dark and gloomy images when you hear the word? We all love to see pictures of beautiful sunrises and sunsets and sunshine-y days. But what about clouds?

Where I grew up (in New England) I saw a LOT of clouds. But here in Southern California, they aren't so common. And when I was driving my daughter home from school one recent afternoon, we noticed them coming. It was really pretty neat, since, as I said, we don't often see them. And we both thought they looked really beautiful! As soon as we pulled into the driveway, I jumped out of the car and started shooting! They rolled in pretty quickly and made the sky turn quite dark- but only for a few moments. Then, before we knew it, the light blue returned.

I am hoping this is the kind of scenario I am going through right now: the clouds have been approaching for a while. They are now over head. But soon they will move on out and my pain will be all gone. This experience will be just enough for me to stop and appreciate the fact that for most of my days I am blessed with good health. Here in SoCal, we are SO often blessed with good weather. Once in a while I think it's not a bad thing for us to experience some cloudy- even rainy days. We need to have a reality check. Life is not always smooth, easy, or sunshine-y. And those clouds we are given every now and then just may have a silver lining.

Thanks for stopping by. I always love reading your comments and so appreciate it when you take the time to leave one!
Many Blessings to you!

Thursday, February 24, 2011

More Stamp Room Changes

At some point, I do plan on showing you my stamp room- all of it I mean.
This room used to be my daughter's bedroom. But when she married and moved out, I grabbed the opportunity to (finally) have my own studio! :-)

The room has been through quite a transformation, and quite frankly is still not all the way finished. But... it is nearing completion at last. And, as promised, I'll share it all with you before long.

But for today I just could not resist sharing a few sneak peek pics of not just my stamping space, but also of my (most wonderful in the world) dog with you. She is my velcro dog; always wanting to be wherever I am. And I just love her to pieces! Anyway, Macy's furniture delivery came this morning with the new love seat I bought for my studio, and they were not out the door 10 seconds before Sophie was happily curled up on what I know she believes to be her new sofa!

My room is quite small- only about 15'x 11' in size. There are double doors on one wall, and then a single door on another wall. I found this wonderful antique quilt and had it hung to cover the double doors so it looks like a wall.

I used to have a twin bed there, but it was just too big. However, when I gave it away I felt as if I had made a huge mistake. I honestly did not realize how much I would miss it! It was really nice being able to sit or nap there. And if I wasn't feeling well, or my husband was sick, it was great to have the bed available, too.

This room is downstairs (all our other bedrooms are up), which I love. It's so convenient having a work area downstairs! When the kids got home from school, my youngest daughter used to love to come in here and snuggle up with the dog while I stamped or worked on the computer, etc. So she really missed the bed when it was gone, too. I am hoping this love seat will be a good replacement. One nice bonus about it is that it is also a pull out twin bed, which will come in handy for overnight guests as well.

As comfortable as she was, I knew that her black fur would cover it in no time. Sorry Sophie, but....

.... I had to make you get down just for a minute while I put a throw blanket down! Okay- now you can go back on your new bed! ;-)

So- is she one of the most spoiled dogs around? Well, I know I am not alone in my love for my precious fur baby. How about you? Do you have a pet and do you spoil him or her, too? I'd love to hear!

As always, I thank you for stopping by. I hope you are having a great day today!

Monday, February 14, 2011

Valentine's Treats- Just In Time

Here you have the latest example of my procrastinating lifestyle: Starting to think about- and having to make- Valentine's treats the night before Valentine's Day! Well, it's not that I intentionally procrastinated, but I did keep telling myself that with all else that I have had going on lately, I could put this off just one more day. And, one day turned in to two, two turned into three and so on and so forth. Before I knew it it was panic time!

So, I ended up doing the fasted and easiest thing I could: I made lots of little candy bag toppers!

I have to say, I was pretty proud of myself. In doing these I actually stuck to one of my (too many) New Years' Resolutions: To start using up my old retired papers and embellishments! Well, at least the papers anyway ;-) I didn't get too fancy with the design of these because of my time crunch, but I think they turned out pretty cute in spite of it all. I had hoped to fill them with Valentine themed chocolates, but due to my procrastination, all that was left at Target were the plain ones. But, they were fine anyway.

I think these were my favorites: very soft and pretty.

And these worked well for the men- with a little brown and blue- not too overly feminine.

The same for these: pretty, but not too "girly".

I got a big bunch of them made: enough to take up to the Children's Hospital to hand out to the many people we see so often whom I wanted to give a "little something" to: The parking attendants, the receptionist at the clinic, the receptionists at the front lobby, the receptionists at rehab, the guard, the shuttle bus drivers, the therapists, etc. etc. There are so many people we have come to know and it is nice to be able to just hand them something to let them know they are appreciated. The staff there is amazing- and so dedicated and kind. It's a very small gesture, but hopefully it makes them feel special.

I also made enough for my kids to take to school. I don't think they are ever too old to show a little appreciation to a teacher or staff member.

And I saved one for my favorite sales lady. Her name is Cyndy and she works at my favorite jewelry store in town. She is so helpful and never pressures me. She always steers me in the right direction and has even kept me from some pretty serious impulse buying. She's one of those people who you click with as soon as you meet. I knew in an instant she'd become more of a "friend" than a "salesperson". I love going in and just poking around the store because she makes it so fun!

I guess I could have thought of many, many more people to give a little Valentine treat to, but I just wasn't able to fit in the time to make any more than these. But I am hoping that when the next holiday rolls around, I can for once get my act together in time to make more little thank you's. I always find it's so fun to do- even more fun then I think it is going to be :-)

I hope you had a wonderful Valentine's Day- filled with both giving and receiving much love!

Thanks for visiting!