Friday, December 26, 2014

Believe Sign


You won't believe this- for the last few days a large sign has been outside our house that says: "Believe."

All of my family members thought I put it there. This morning I just found out about it. That's right. I did not see it until Jaden just brought it inside. I will take photos later. Along with it is a smaller sign that reads: "All things are possible if you believe."

Thank you! Whoever you are that put the sign up! Family members saw it when we had our family get together! I wish I could have made it out there to see it!

* I would have this afternoon if it weren't for Padre asking: "When are you going to take down the Christmas sign?"

Disease Doesn't take Vacation & He Came!

"Bad news,"

a faint voice caught me mid-dream Christmas Morning.  It was Jaden.

"He didn't come. Santa didn't come."

he sounded down trodden; thinking that something "magical" might happen over night but his point in Santa being "fake", and me telling him that if he stopped believing then he would end up getting something useful- like clothes, and my testimony to the fact that when we DO believe in the spirit of Christmas magical miracles happen!

The lack of THE Gift were  just that- a big lie; everything about me saying he should always Believe and why- were set for naught.


the ONE thing that I was waaaaayyyy off on thinking of getting him or anything- had not come.

IT was not there.

I blinked a few times and thought back on the previous night. Mind you, I was grateful this conversation with J was at a decent hour.

 Compared to my 4 a.m. "'hoooo-raaayyyy he caaammmme!'"
pouncing on my parent's bed on many a magical Christmas mornings and begging them to get up so we could open presents. Eventually, Padre just gave the go ahead to start without him after we got older. Or he did.

Back to J and I's situation....

  'He didn't come? '

 I thought mulling the prospects. No sooner had consciousness truly come to me, I felt the sharp pains around my rib cage. The rib incident and the throb of a tiny toe flooded back into my broken body.

*I'm sorry but it makes me laugh to have the icing on my immuno-suppressed life is a broken toe. But they hurt! LIke a paper cut.


His giddy voice made me happy.

Mission accomplished-

joy !

had been felt. Even over the strenuous two day celebration of Christmas dealing with this disease, large family dinners, and prednisone needs that had to be endured, I felt joy. In a bitter-sweet kind of way.

I had braced myself for it (hoopla festivities) so when I ran out of zip- I rested. I asked for help, too. J. got to be my personal servant in order to earn money for things he wants.
It was hard to excuse myself from festivities or talking and go "rest."
It seems so geriatric.

But I found that I would rest and when I got back up and into the thick of things, everyone was still there!  However, I still missed several of the Reindeer Games.

(I have loved hooked rugs lately and this one was a steal! Everything apparently goes on sale Christmas Eve- next to this pillow is a book I have enjoyed on hard nights.  My neighbor loaned me the book to help J. on his project and it helped me feel the Christmas spirit this month. Thanks, Joan.)

I take back how I said I "endured"- the two days had not been "endured", they had been accomplished; like running a marathon or summiting a peak. Or finishing a sdchool project.

I was happy. And Relieved.
(still with a lot of hurt.. but happy. And I let my doctors have a break from me having to come see them until whenever they get back to town.. If this is shingles- then it is too late for an anti-viral. And, no, I can't get the vaccine due to the immuno-suppression of my body)

(one of the random projects Padre helped me with during the latest prednisone taper- which started in the summer)

It was hard getting through everything and I wasn't even the one putting it on!!I am glad my sisters and brothers helped my mom put it on. The grandkids had a riot.

 Especially feeling a pain in the rib cage like I had been a Grid kid speared by his opponent with his helmet and me not wearing padding or something.

Shingles usually has a rash. This does not. But it feels like the menacing malady I had three years ago- burning, itching, debilitating pain. And I have an Entyvio infusion coming up...... which means I gotta get healthy before my immune system dumps for a bit.

Realizing that disease, injury, and sickness don't take holidays- I racked my brain to recall if I had ever seen Santa not come.

At least in J and I's 'lease agreement' as a stay-at-home daughter, we've had produced many a magical memory Christmas morning.

(this does not mean I have leaned on my folks for the surprises. I have had to set my alarm to remind Santa to come so as not have something like what the beginning of this blog post is talking about.)

The Christmad Eve party came back to my mind; a swarm of toddlers climbing presents, eating and drooling chocolate, etc. etc.

 I remembered  my new stocking found earlier that day for 3 dollars and recalled items within it when I couldn't sleep earlier Christmas morning. I was busy hurting and had tried to blog or read through the hurt.
Everything came back to my memory.

"Are you sure?" 
I asked Jaden shoving my face into my pillow to keep a smile that had crossed my face from being seen but he was well on his solemn way, back to the family room.

J: "Yes, there are only the same presents that were there yesterday." he said- totally deflated and his falling onto the couch was completely audible.
"Actually there is one that looks like clothes or something."

Remember those boxes, Readers? The rectangular soft ones that you know has underwear or socks in them?

I had heard him run upstairs to check that tree before settling into a deep depression of the Christmas Day Blues.  So I knew the weight of not having 'The gift 'was sinking in hard.

"Well, I was up earlier than you and I saw some stuff in my stocking- have ya checked yours?"


(Yay! I Grinch Gifted me this Doile Tree Topper!)

Then the sound of Suess-like jubilation rang through the basement. I knew he'd walked around his bean bag and probably stubbed his toe on a box that looked like what he had asked for.
It was like a scene straight out of the movie
A Christmas Story.

I heard his footsteps then take three stairs at a time, plant themselves on the landing and then  race across the kitchen floor,  finally landing in'Padre's room. Where the big bear still slumbered.


he exclaimed. And woke up the Padres. Again, glad he is a tween and slept in on Christmas morning.

Before long he was down stairs again and begging me like a dog wanting an afternoon walk, instead he was wanting to open presents.

 I couldn't, Readers.

I literally was too ill to do it right then. I had to tell him he could open a couple then wait til I was ready and able to do the rest.

When you are sick or are in pain there is a space between being laser focused on healing to being aware and observing things around you.
I love when I can get passed that point of critical concentration on curing, to being able to look  OUTside of myself and take in life. And other people's lives. It's a lot interesting, believe me.

It is sometimes a slow, gradual process however.  And it never ceases to call my attention to it when something from outside the cellular world of mine unveils itself. It has a purpose-It is the body's coping strategy. There is only so much energy to go around and when you are sick your body is quite selfish and holds onto all the energy it can until it gets what it needs to get you back on your feet.
At least adrenal wise.
Mind over Matter doesn't work in core vs. edges of disease, etc.
Tonight, or last night, was Christmas Eve. It was a nice day for Idaho Falls. No snow. Only one rude person on the road weaving in and out of traffic only to end up next to us at the next light, and only one appt.
However, it was an early appt. - early enough to get me to it, write two Christmas Cards and debate a quick peak in a store that had 70% off Christmas stuff.
Ya know that one extravagant picture I plucked off the Internet months ago and wanted to incorporate into this year's theme?
(closer examination I can see several different birds. Good thing I DID NOT notice this before, Readers!)
It had some peacocks in it.
Where the heck was I going to get some pheasant feathers or the bird for that matter? Besides the local zoo or a small shipment of feathers from Amazon, I wasn't going to go all gusto in this area and just stick to my fake fruit that I have held onto- knowing it would one day have a destiny.
 So I settled on two of Kurt's stars that had the teals, greens, and blue colors of the peacock bird to anchor the ends of my fake garland and help me with my own "Tangerine Room."

 Until today, Christmas Eve. The day that I promised would be a day that would have been proceeded by several days of hunkering down drinking hot cocoa, throwing my head back and laughing at old movies, putting puzzles together with Jaden, finishing up some last minute wrapping, and just plain 'ol, you know, hunkering down.
Avoiding retail stores and all they entail which is to leave you with less money than you had when you walked into.
When I quickly beat a crowd of shoppers all of this hunkering fell to the wayside. Heck, J. wasn't even out of bed yet. I might as well see what the deals were at:
At Kohls.

No sooner had I scooted past all the clothes that were on sale did I see the Peacocks.
"You have to be kidding me." I said out loud. Because they were way cheap. And way cute. And matched the Tangerine Room idea. In a round about way. These were fake, those were possibly shot and killed on some English mountain side, stuffed and set up in an actually Martha Stewart Lodge.
I bought one for a couple bucks ,
After picking up a towel, wash rag with a Cardinal on it, and other 75% off little frames for our pictures taken this year,  J. and I watched Studio C on the TV and ate a cookie from:
Love at First Bite
while I centered the bird on the mantle.

It needed some mending so I immortalized the bird's glitter to its body with Mod Podge and then clipped it onto a branch in the middle of my sagging Christmas swag.
Do you think God cares how I decorate? Or if I should? Either way, I felt like he was aware of me when I came across just some simple things that added to what I was trying to achieve for my family in my parent's home; a little haven.
Later that night, I asked a few of the older nieces and nephews for their input on my prednisone induced decorating.
One, who I don't to see often, and is Audrey Hepburn's look a like followed me downstairs and listened to me explain how I was torn between two looks this year and so I did both!

: The warm white glow vs.
the Frozen white light and shimmery sparkle snow look that everyone is attributing to the movie:

I flipped off the main lights and let her walk from each side of the room.
The polar opposite sides looks were split by a simple table and bookcase that I'd used for my wrapping station.
Like a judge in one of those 'Best In Show Competitions', she looked over my Icy side. With her hands behind her back and her eyes taking in each of my decorations I was beginning to wonder if I wanted an 11 year old's opinion!
She sauntered over to the "warm side";. My favorite side.

She then climbed up on the rocking chair, Buck, hardly moving him because she herself is as light as the peacock's feather, to take in the "woodsy" display atop the bookcase that I created as if the house were going to be on the front cover of a marth Steward magazine.

Taking a long look around the whole room,
She finally piped:
"I like it!"

(a sincere compliment that actually made me feel good! Mission accomplished! I made a difference and memory in the lives of my loved ones.)
She quite possibly will be a Pageant judge in her later years- she's that qualified.
The next compliment came from a cowboy. Cowboy # 2. He came down stairs and with wide eyes looked over the lit up room and asked me if we could turn off
"The big lights"
so that he could just see the Christmas lights because he really liked the blue ones. The blue ones were lined along J's old school sled. I wonder if they, as well as J., are wondering if we are going to get any snow and can actually shed the lights and take the old runner sled for a ride?

Because I had made the trip to two stores for the discounted items, I used up the energy I needed to actually get ready for the party. Or at least change into something you don't mind having your picture taken in.
Or wearing a brand new scarf! Oh, Well! I will tomorrow!
So I had to go take a nap.

*I am not feeling the greatest. So I will publish this post as is. Add more pics to the bottome part of the post later. . After the nauseau leaves. And this dang weariness.

The body mends in its own due time. I mentioned the "set back" in a couple posts back that were unexpected; I thought the prednisone taper would be my only "worry" right now. In a sense it is the only "worry" as it is woven into the latest of injuries/illnesses, etc. I'm sure it has to be.
But I didn't initially categorize it that way. Say, for instance when I broke my toe by catching it on the leg of a chair.
Yet, it happened and I had to put away my goals; small goals, reached and realized, I would need to "Start Over" again. AGAIN. Which is the nature of prednisone. There is no way to make a goal or game plan on that thing. Only one: off it. Whenever that is.
Isn't that life? Starting over again and again, and again each day. Whether one day with a broken toe/stubbed toe, or with amazing health that led you into the Navy Seal Program. P.S. I am so thankful that is NOT me out there. Thank you Navy Seals.
The seasons symbolize the process of growing, cutting down, and then a dormant period; why shouldn't I expect the same? Granted Idaho has a way of messing those seasons up and confusing nature, so it is on a bit of a prednisone schedule itself, but for the most part the world goes round n round in the same way.
I'd like to have it be over a larger span period between bouts,  but I am learning.
So back to this gray area..... it is amazing to me that once I am able to recover physically, mentally, etc. I am able to take in more. I didn't facebook for a long time so I was 'out of the loop.' And it was actually a nice loop to get out of. I wasn't burdened by the complexities of the outside world and others situations while dealing with my own, very heavy burdens but it made it hard for those who know me to keep tabs on me and help me if they could.
The closer friends that actually call me and we kept in touch in real ways, didn't burden me with extra weight to worry me. I appreciated that a lot. And apoligize I didn't recipricate when I have heaped it on when you have needed me to shoulder some of yours. sorry!
As I have unfolded into being able to take in more and more of what I have missed or current events;
I am amazed at YOU!
That's all.
As I have healed in my space and God's time, as I have tried to make a space for J. and I to feel a bit of a haven, the world has turned and friends have had kids, had them graduate, and sent them off to college.
But it feels that way!
And they have gotten really good at what they do in life; with the talents they have been given. Initially, I felt like I had to hurry and "catch up".  While I was debating material that feels like bear fur for a throw pillow, although cute,  some were graduating from med school and things of that nature. And that made me feel sorta small.
In some cases, I've had to go over and repeat things I have already learned. Which has been truly a defeating feeling. Actually, the worst feeling has been the way my mind has jumped from one thing to another in a manner that I had seen in the students I taught. Now, I am getting a feel for why one minute they were sitting criss crossed applesauce during the calendar countdown, and dumping applesauce out of some body's lunch bag when I looked up next; no rhyme or reason.
So out come my lists and some serious "stay focused" self talk. While multi-tasking can be a good quality in some instances, in others, it just isn't. And i can't think of an example that is funny enough right now because I should be asleep.

Tuesday, December 23, 2014

What was Mary Thinking......?

(My photographer; J. took this picture for me. And the rest you will see throught out the post.)

For some reason the time before Christmas, in preparing for it, sorta feels like that nesting period I had before Jaden was born. I wanted to get things just "so."
Have blankets and burb cloths made, the changing station all set up with the Johnson and Johnsone lotions laid out as if they were fine perfumes in Princess Middleton's stash.
The preparing for his arrival was a joy! I loved fiding clothes or thinking about who he would be and what needs he and I would have because once he was here, there wasn't going to be time!
Actually, there was- it's just fun to prepare for the "advent" of a child and you want to be prepared for the unexpected. Like getting shingles and breaking/spraining your toe.
( That brought everything to a pretty good halt. )
As I thought of this and felt a new level of misery during the few days leading up to Christmas day the thought of the things that I have left undone, might not even get to do now, and :
"have I forgotten anyone?,"
(hmmm.... do I use the gingerbread or birch tree slice for a tag? I love to wrap gifts and hate that shingles makes doing this simple activity a true pain. But at least I don't have to load myself up on a donkey and head on out to pay some bills clear in Bethlehem.)
feeling, I wondered about the
Savior's mother, Mary.
She had to leave her home that she was "nesting" and  most likely had everything "ready", then she has to get on a donkey and ride a dusty and dirty trail.

While pregnant.

And everyone in town saying things about her and Joseph- she probably felt isolated and sad that her friends and strangers looked upon her in such a fashion.
Oh, Thank YOU, Joseph for believing her and standing as a guard over her as she went throug out her pregnancy. He must have felt a huge burden upon his back. The weight of being a parent is hard enough. But to by chosen to be the Savior's earthly father?


Could the timing of the birth date been any worse? I am bemoaning rib cage pain and here she was dialating on the back of a donkey.
What did she feel? At peace? Or a bit of distress in wondering if they could get the taxes paid, beat it back home, then have the baby??
She probably had a nursery and midwife all worked out and lo, and behold, there was a different plan for the birth of her Son.
I officially say this Christmas has to be prolonged until I can get everything done that I haven't been able to do!
Actually, what I had hoped to achieve; the spirit of the Savior's birth, was felt when I walked by the family room and glanced at the half way done mantel. With a scrap of paper and some little ideas, I'd wanted to 'create' a certain look.
That desire had led me to craft stores for yarn, letters to wrap yarn around, ribbon, felt, styrofoam wreaths, and tons of glue sticks.
I scooted along on the scooter trying to locate these things and was so gratefult to find the "it" item. Even if it was simply a color to match a look I had started. A lot of what I made, was given as gifts and that made me happy.
Boxes trickled in containing things that would help me accomplish my goals. When a huge roll of baker's paper arrived Padre was a little confused but as I have been ablet to wrap gifts and do some decorating on the paper, he has seen the light.
I'm sure he's about lost his mind seeing all of my creative material pulled out so that I could "create."
NOT being able to has really been a downer!

(I found this old bible falling apart at the DI. I wanted to use the pages to make a wreath. It's waaaayyy outta my league to do before Christmas. Looks to me to be a Jan. project. This picture hung in our church for many years when I was a child.)
As most of you Readers know, my health makes things hard to do.  This year was no different.
However, as I passed the room, littered with all my wrapping and letter writing items, I felt it.
I felt the Christmas spirit.

(This swag has truly sagged. It has needed my tender love and affection abut has been put on the back burner. However, I have decided it is a 'Winter' swag and, therefore, can be left up for the whole winter! Cause it can be so cute once I get the time and strength and outdoor 3M product to attach to the brick..... Isn't this fun, Readers? You get to see what stay-at -home daughters do. Or can't do cause they are sick.
Maybe it was because the lights were off and it was just the lights? Either way I leaned in the door way and just looked at the twinkling lights before heading upstairs for dinner.

Tiny miracles leading up to this week have been special. Like the shawl that came from Etty Geller in Israel for me to wear for pictures with Jaden. It matched the teal shirt I'd picked out perfectly.
Thank you, Thank you Etty Geller! (etsy)

*I had never heard of this before until I decided I wanted to make flowers out of book pages.
Manicure done by Abby. If you are needing a pedi or mani she's your gal. Happy with my sparkly toes and nails! Oh! and look at those cute pom poms..... sigh.


Jaden and I haven't had pro pics taken since he was two. But I felt like I needed it done this year. And thanks to Kristi Sheriff.... they make my heart swell! I will post some when I get them.
Earlier in the day the young 'uns were here (toddler aged grandkids), mom and my sisters were  making marmalade cinnamon rolls and peanut clusters, and I wrapped a present or two, after I read to my nephews. Then took a good, long nap.

Mary had none of this. No ice packs to relieve the pain she felt in her back. Or moist heat rice bags to plop into the microwave and sip hot cocoa while watching a movie to distract from the pain.
However, it may be posible that the animals in the barn were soothing and eased the pain of the long road, the delivery, etc.

Maybe she knew that it would happen the way it did. And she had the faith to let  God be in charge of the details.

She had plenty of fortitude.

Sunday, December 21, 2014

It's Here!

Are your Christmas letters written?
(mine aren't either)
Have you gotten your tree put up?
(the one upstairs just barely got put up. the one J &I decorate is a year round tree, so it was already up. Just re-located and love added. )
Did you make a Norwegian Advant Calendar?
Me neither.
I have wanted Jaden to hang one of the Birch branches on the wall, fill lunch bags with small items as gifts strung with baker's twine and hung from the white Yul Log.
And have it look as pinteristy as possible.
Didn't happen.
The lunch bags did and we did the countdown. But it was when we remembered and
even then, J. just had to take it out of my gift wrapping box that holds, well, things to be wrapped for friends and neighbors and gifts not put under the tree yet.
Who knows!
He may have gotten to school and sat down to eat a small badge that said:
This came from Best Made Co. and I had to have him look up the meaning in the dictionary along with the word "Advent" cause both eluded him when I asked if he knew what they meant.
For some reason it always means more to look at what a word means in a dictionary.
That was how it was when we mulled over the word and patch,
It means
Courage in Pain or Adversity.
(The humble tree J. and I spruce up every once in awhile. Do you like how the ornaments from the Birch tree turned out? And the poor Cardinal is in pain because he lost his beak. oh, well.)
The stars from Kurt Knudsen's shop have been fun to pick out for gifts and to hang around our Christmas decor. Which was kept way simple this year.
With the exception of the wreaths that I started back around Thanksgiving!
So my point is; I am still not ready for reasons why I have needed fortitude.
 And as we near the day I want to hunker down and do crafts. Like pom -poms and snowflakes for the front window; which I have tried to bribe J. and his pals to help me do. There has been no hunkering in this regard, Readers!
We are still in: "School is out!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Yaayyyy hooooo!!!!!"
Just wait- J. will come to me bored to death from playing a video game and ask me to make tons of pom poms or elaborate origami.
This week I actually wish I could read small stories each day and about the Savior's birth leading up to Thursday.
That would bring me joy!
I am somewhat content to write letters to friends and family. Very grateful that we managaed to get a family picture taken. THAT was a miracle in and of itself.
There was a lot I wanted to do and am sad to not be able to do. LIke make a lovely mantel and coinciding book cases. Half way there. Not totally like the picture I had in my "scraps"
 of ideas. But they come close and I think we have a cozy ambiance in which to watch our Christmas movies, learn to cut paper like the Germans who make amazing things out of paper with exacto knives. And maybe even learn how to make a shirt blanket.
I need to put in a plug here about the lights that I found at Target. I put them on the opposite side of the room because they are a cool white light and my original decor is warm white.
These lights are the best! They are darling. They were the only ones at Target and the brand is Holiday Time Random Twinkle Cool White LED Icicle Lights.
They got a bad review on Amazon but I have loved them around my little "Frozen" end of the basement.
And coupled them with some blue lights wrapped around our Birch Branches.
(Yeh, I know nothing really coincides with each other in the room but the whole point of it is something fun to look at and hopefully the grandkids have some good memories.)

Friday, December 19, 2014


Sea urchins. Image: Nina Thune, Wikimedia

No, this is not a post about a German Urchin. (Those are German Urchin to the right..)

 Although it does give me an idea for a children's book....

And I haven't forgotten you!

IT's  [my post] about something happening that you weren't planning on. Not you, but me. But you could relate.

Like when Sandra Bullock gets unconnected from the Spaceship's Umbilical Chord and then torn apart from Brown Eyed Astronaut George Clooney who was the driver of the shuttle in the movie GRAVITY.

It's an earth shattering thing to be loosed into outer space. As Sandra showed us. An unplanned event at the worst time, whether being loosed into outer space or just in a space of time that you thought something differentshould take place, well, it's not planned. These sea urchins' picture  were taken by Nina Thune. Wikimedia.

And unplanned things, like maybe a child when you thought you were done having children and are now a grandparent, can be tricky to hold onto your bearings. If you have them to begin with. With no bearings you are pretty much outta luck. With some bearing,  after bearing your last born,  you can navigate the best you can in a situation that was unplanned, halted your life, changed it, and maybe even put a damper on how you can bare it all.


****************(this post is going to get into more of what happens with Crohns disease and extramanifestations such as chostochondroitin pain and in a weird location: my right rib. I will talk about my arm and hand, severe fatigue, blah, blah,. If you want to stick around to find out how I got a flat tire and then tune out, you are welcome to.)************************************************************************************

This happened the other day.

(no, not a family of urchins) 

Not just something close to unbearable and at the wrong time- but a

Set back.

 Just as we are rounding second base for the month of December , and all that it entails;


We had an incident that dislocated us from Sandra Bullock's shuttle. (and another one that I really am talking about.)

 Yup, just you and that empty void of space and a chlostrophobic white space suit to hyperventilate into as you drift further into the bleakness of the dark, yet beautiful, unknown.

Or closer to the steamy, hot sun.

Or maybe just toward earth and that one part where ya have to burn up before ya get to fall into water!

When this happened I felt as if I couldn't buy a break. It was one of those days where a two hour errand trip ended up taking all day.

We'd done a zillion trips to crafts stores to find the right thing to put up the right sun catcher in Grandma's window and it was turning into a circus. One holder would be clear but had a metal handle. Nope.

Then one was just right but only held the tip of your toe nail.
Oh, by the way- this isn't the point that flung us into outer space where we couldn't buy a break. And it wasn't when my Uncle came into my Grandma's and told me to have Padre check out the deflating left tire on my car.  Nor was it when I was in BIG O and they said that all the tires needed replacing, that I felt

I could not buy a brake.

I was located in a place where I could buy brakes, but I needed tires.

How do tires know when to ruin Christmas? Or December? Actually, anytime you have to replace all four tires, it's a bad time. So, really, flat tires don't discriminate on when they make you miserable.

And why do they have to give the snow tire sphill?  (the tire shop guys) I mean, it's Idaho, and yes we get a lot of snow, black ice, slush, etc.  And women need to have good snow tires so we don't need men's help as we try to traverse a mountain side to get to a ski hill, right? 

But, Readers,  we haven't even had a speck of snow
*those were J's words said to me after school one day as the sun shined like it does in Florida or something and is as warm as Arizona. Well, I am kidding. Warm for here. Idaho in the middle of December. And this was written a bit ago.

So I am in the tire store, on a nice day, that started at a nice time but ended up taking all day and I was only supposed to be out and about TWO hours,  and I was trying to be sold snow tires. And the worst part of it was the kid with me whining to leave. He'd had it. Little does he know what is on the horizon of having it........

Anyway, I listened to the snow tire deal and

Then try to be convinced to get the best grade they had in the spring.
So buy 8 tires.

If I had not had on a mask, the seller could have seen the expression on my face. Instead he had to see if he could read my eyes behind my coke bottle thick, foggy glasses.

He gave me stats, threw the donut on at Padre's request (yes, I waited to call him before I had Joe throw on some snow tires just for good measure) and we were home sooner than the sky could let a frozen sun sink into the west.

This tire problem was taken care of and calm was restored after I waited and called Sam's Club on a daily basis for two weeks to find that the tire I wanted- the Michehlin Revenge r5ooo. - kidding- was out of stock for four to six weeks.

That's right. I waited two weeks to find out I would have to wait four to six to get the kind I really wanted.

With one donut on the vehicle and Christmas weather immenent, I wasn't confident I wanted to go that route and wished I'd just got the ones my gut told me to get back when I was at the tire store with just the one going flat. sigh. (Joe, I was going to just go with your higher end tire you had in stock.)

That's what I get for having Padre. My Uncle has the same vehicle and the same problem some months ago and found the right tire but so did the rest of America.

I might have posted all this a bit ago but there is more to this whole December month, ox in the mire, can 't buy a break and apparently buy the tire ya want, story.

The Christmas miracle in this whole debacle is that it didn't ruin Christmas. It made for a VERY long day, I'd hit my Crohns/Prednisone max an hour before I found the right hanger for the sun catcher at Grandma's and a star is happily gleaming at her house along with a fixed 'Mad Blue Bird.'
Glad I could just give her mine since hers broke. 

 But the miracle of this scenario- was that I didn't have my mind didn't sink into despair. So sitting in Big O, watching TV with an option of eating popcorn and coffee, which I did neither,  although grating on my nerves (the TV and the kid) was actually not making me sink into a December Depression.

good question. I think it was because we were prepared.

I didn't freak out about changing a tire if needed. I felt calm enough to do it and the weather was fine if I had needed to.

For a disaster like not finding something you need on the first trip. And then a flat tire. In December. Four new tires due to be paid for in December- we were prepared with emergency funds.
The only thing I had no control over was my health. And that has been pretty precarious. But I was helped through that as well when I told them to throw a donut on and we just drove home with me feeling a sense of peace; that all would be okay. 
The shock was absorbed, the hit taken and the financial belt tightened. But it was O.K.

Thank you tire angels.
(now for that one around my belly)
And being able to live at home, Padre. So that I could accumulate the needed emergency funds.
Good thing it wasn't snowing.

Even though J. would come home and say: "NOT EVEN a SPECK of SNOW!" in complaintive mode, I have been  secretly grateful for some errand running NOT in lots of specks of snow. Juggling my "stuff" is hard enough and that just makes it easier to fall. Even using trekking poles, it can be a bit slippery.

And falls are not good for us people right now. I have had to learn to carry my purse on the opposite side with the one ankle getting worse..

So I have some health news. I was leading into it but taking forever. Sorry. I have pics I will put up in due time.

My set back has made my life a bit more painful and for some reason I have also developed pain in the area of my right rib cage. I chalk it up to chostochondroiton pain. Which is what the X-Rays have said. But I get to do some more testing.

The bad news, that caught my attention while reading this post is my legs,
For you Readers that read to find out about health,, etc. and what is going on there I have to tell you that I upped the time that I was walking. I wore my braces. I put in my padding for cushiony-ness into my shoes. I did all I could.

But my body just could not bare the load. One night we had the church party. I pushed myself to get to a store so we could get J a shirt for our Christmas pics. after that.  I honestly was near tears at the end. I had grabbed a wheelchair at the store so that I could walk and then rest if needed.

It was was needed.
THEN the unthinkable happened the next day I made a trip to Wal-Mart (nothing unusual)
However This is when I should have


The place was hoppin'! There were NO Scooters! I think they have six total and so I decided to grab a wheelchair with a mesh thing in front that you can lift up or over- either way I didn't do it. I just limped all over Wal-Mart.

By the time I made the full loop, I knew I had done damage. My foot that likes to do the limp dog thing had been flipped up as many times as I could walk like I had on flippers at the beach.

But the ankle itself was in so much pain. The impinged part. The side part. Whatever that means- in my terms it means it hurts at the front of my ankle at the top and has to do with the no muscle factor and cartilege and tendons that tend to be done. And in "flipping" it up with each step.

The inside left ankle hurt- no burned. I have a spur that needs removing but there is more to the pain/impinging whatever.

By yesterday it was bruised over. I have iced it. There is a small vessel that is burst. Not a big deal but it adds to the hurt.


This is getting hard to finish. And I am having some frustrations! Sorry.
These are tender mercies in my life, Readers. 

There are the things that don't change, they can progress and that can be hard. Really hard.

 It was the URCH! to our: "Hey! All is WELL!" feeling that keeps ya getting up in the morning and plugging along.

A Crohns incident. Well, that is a vague term. But it was one in which the writing on the wall is there but you have been ignoring it with the help of prednisone.

And to be honest, this does depress me. I want to be better. I was hopeful that this new med would just change my life! YAY! But there is so much damage done due to prednisone that is irreversible that I have to accept. With, what is that word? Grace?

Current health events have brought A LOT to a stop. Gosh, I have had to back off on decorating and prepping for the big day. Good thing I started a loooong time back.

Sorry this is ending on a downer! I will rest up, ice up this ankle, and jump right back into the Christmas writing!

Friday, December 12, 2014

Scraps & The Fabric Store

(Our old school lights around a plastic old school wreath and placed upon my adirondack chair.)

The other day I was browsing through "scraps" of fabric. Yes, scraps. As I did this I thought of my son outside waiting for me- opting for music on the radio vs. coming into the Fabric store.
"They are soo boring."

J had said on some occassion where we had waited a mere half hour to have a slice of felt cut.

ME: "Are you kidding me? When I grew up we  had fabric stores that ONLY sold  FABRIC. Heck, here you could go look at some stickers or wood to make something,  paint it, or cut paper out into amazing things.  There are even toys.

"And the music was not this hip hop over the stereo right now. It was straight Barry Manilow.,"

J: "Berry Who?"

(The weather has been incredibly warm and so it makes it hard to sit in the chair this way...)

Anyway, I thought it so interesting having worked at a craft store, my mom now does, and how much I enjoy fabric and yarn and can't really do anything amazing with it.

One of my sisters seems to be a quilting machine or something cause she can whip up amazing award winnning quilts, but I can do the basics and that is basically it.

But I love fabric! How soft it is! Well the kind I was rubbing my hand across because I was looking for the fabric that would go on the back side of all the shirts J. can't get rid of. Becaues they are his history- the track meets he's won in, the teams he sweat alongside with-- heck I could make the backing out of all the jerseys he has had to buy with each basketball session.
(a scrap of paper that gave me an idea for the downstairs mantle using items I already had!)

However, snuggling up with that next to ya doesn't seem like it would be fun and those jerseys could still be rank. Where were we? Oh, soft scraps of fabric sold in stores that play musis that put kids to sleep or shriek.

I couldn't find the exact soft material that my neighbor had whipped up into a scarf for me- see how amazing scraps can be?- and had to go with a longer more lush, Grizzly Bear softness material. That, with the amount of shirts I wanted to put ON the blanket, would cost as much to buy the kind of rifle needed, and the amount a taxidermist would need to keep him in the pose of almost eating me.

But it was so soft! I looked up and there was a pillow made out of some of it. I could do that with that patch. Or do as, Rachael, the friend I met there, suggested and put it in the midddle and the sides of the blanket.
(another page from a magazine that gave me ideas for the holidays- which, due to the balmy 56 we had today makes it confusing. J. came home and threw on some shorts. Notice the quilt- it was half a quilt that Grandma liked to say was for just putting over you when you sat in a chair and watched TV.
And there is a clothes pin in there. Another Ode to my mother's mom. She made doll furniture for us girls out of it when we were young and we thought it was so fun.)

I have no idea if I will get to the pillow this year. But it does fit in with his nature room whether graduates from The Grizz HS, or not.

There are scraps of material that I let go that made me mad at myself for not keeping, but while in de-cluttering boot camp; there is a point to let go. Unnntil you find out that Pinterest existed (after four years) and they re-cycle, upcycle, Twice Around the Block, Stuff and you find you should have held on a little bit longer. Until some guy invented antiquining.
(other things that inspired me and a journal where I scribbled it all down.)

Truth be told there are just a couple things I thought:

 "Wow! that merino wool lined pair of pants I no lnger fit would be awesome in a Christmas Wreath!! Or as some kind of plaid ornament!"

No,, I come from a long line of scrap keepers. My mom has the best scraps. And she has the best skills to bring to pass the projects she has in mind. The mailman brought me an interesting gift recently that had to do with just sort of thing:  Making things I can't make; quilts. But inside were old school books and patterns that had belonged to my grandmother.
(One of the wreaths is finished and embellished with a star that has a theme J. and I chose for this season: All is Well. The Wreath behind it has some work to be done on it and a brown star will go with it. Another bad pic taken by myself but it has been fun to play with yarn and use up those Amazon boxes. I actually love the styrofoam ones the best but sometimes an idea can't wait!)

My aunt had sent them to me along with letters and stamps to start my Christmas letters! But what I found really interesting was my grandmother's writing on a scrap piece of paper. Listed on it were the items she wanted to get from the fabric store. Quarter yard of such and such fabric, little doo-dads.
Did she ever get them? Were they just listed and left in the book like a lot of my unfinished projects?
(I gotta get on these babies. Which, like I have said before, it is good I started preparing for Christmas in the Summer or else I would not have five cards written yet.)
Speaking of which- I gotta wrap this up. More later on why. Sheesh, a woman can't even finish a blog post without things hindering the way!

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