Friday, February 27, 2009


I was not a big fan of Facebook. I only became a member a few months back because my friends daughter posted her baby pictures on it & sent me an email that I would need to join to see the pictures. So I did. All my kids do it and I never really seen too much value in it. BUT- just this weekend the most amazing things happened. Leading up to the weekend I have been getting "friended" by all kinds of my high school classmates. It's been great catching up. Well, I decided to look for some old photos to post and I ran across a picture of an old childhood friend that I lost touch with when I was 18. That was 24 years ago!! It was a Homecoming picture with her date and she had both of their names written on the back of the photo (first & last) so I thought maybe that was who she married. I search FB with her first name & his last name and lo & behold there was a match in CA. (Her family had moved to CA when she was in Jr. High and we continued to pen pal each other up until about the age of 18.) So, I sent a message asking if it could be my childhood friend AND I FOUND HER!!! She wrote me back and has been married for 23 years and has 3 kids and is a breast cancer survivor. AWESOME! The very same day a really great friend of mine that has been missing from my life for about 16+ years found ME on FB and we have been chatting on-line and today talked on the phone for almost 3 hours. She is living in New Orleans now & I can't wait to go and see her! What great blessings to me to have found so many important people in my life! I have a new outlook on Facebook now & would recommend it to never know who may enter back into your life!

Monday, February 23, 2009

Get Creative!

Here is a link to make some easy, beautiful, wool bangle bracelets from Martha Stewart's website. (Be sure & click on "play video") I have a few spools of yarn laying around so I may try this next time I want a quick "fix". Make Martha proud!!

Sunday, February 22, 2009

My Weekend

It has been so hard for me to find the time lately to get create and think of something to write about for my blog. Sometimes I blame my husband as I will just get settled down to write something and he will complain about me being on this computer so I sign off and mindlessly watch TV with him. It really does annoy me at times, but I feel guilty if I am on the computer and it's bugging him... I could do more "blogging" in the morning but I have been very busy lately. Him and I do quite a bit together on the weekends. Dinner & a movie most of the time. If I'm not working, I'm having FUN. So I wouldn't trade that for anything! Friday I went with my girlfriends to lunch and shopping. My friend Brenda has to get a dress for her son's wedding so we looked. They are funny gals. Some of my funnest times include these silly girls. Yesterday I went to another auction with my sister. I got some amazing photographs and old postcards I'll be able to use for my charms. I love this picture here. I think it will make an adorable charm. I just need to think of a great quote or saying to put with it. I also got a chicken. It's really pretty funny how I came to "collect" chickens. I didn't do it on purpose but I guess I'm drawn to them now. My sister gave me a large embroidery picture that I framed with chicken wire. So before I moved here it was the focus of attention in my other kitchen so everyone just assumed I collected chickens and I started getting them from friends & family as gifts. Now I have a large collection. I couldn't turn this one away as I only paid $5 for her and she is old and adorable! I love her little purple bottom! I also got this neat honey jar (I'm guessing that is what it is since it has bee hives & bees all over it.)
I didn't realize it was chipped and thought I was only paying $2 for it but ended up paying $5 for it. Inexperienced auction goer that I am. But I was excited when I got it home and found that I may be able to use it as a mold for my PMC. Check out the detail. I especially love the bottom here as it's all indented with the bees & flowers. Now I just need to get some more clay. (Expensive hobbies) Maybe one day I'll make some money at them to help offset that! ;) Today me & my hubby will go to church & then to lunch. I'll go to the grocery store & I'm sure I'll have my little old friend visit this least I hope he comes in the afternoon as this evening I will be "vegging" in front of the TV having my own little Oscar party, popcorn & all!~

Monday, February 16, 2009


We had a wonderful Valentine's weekend. We didn't even really do anything special, except we spent a lot of time together, doing nothing in particular. Sometimes it's those nothing moments that mean the most. Not stressing over anything, not bickering, just being content to be alive, together and happy. Sometimes the hardest thing to do is appreciate the one you love the most. We watched the movie Fireproof on Friday and it does make you think about how you treat your spouse. I highly recommend it if you have not seen it. It's not the best acting but most of it is okay and the message is loud and clear! It's work to be married but it's worth it if you try hard enough and you have a spouse that tries too. I do appreciate mine! I'm going to try harder to be an even better wife, mother....person.

Friday, February 13, 2009


This is a picture of me and my little sis with my Grandparents. My Grandma has been gone for almost 12 years. Well, my Grandpa too. He died 6 months after my Grandma from congestive heart failure. He was never sick a day in his life. They were married almost 68 years, so I think he died of a broken heart. They were amazing people. I really have so many fond memories of them both & have always felt when I became a grandma I wanted to pattern my "role" after them.

Well, I just found out a few days ago that my step-daughter Brandi is 6 weeks pregnant.

She came to be my daughter at the age of 5. I always wanted her & her little brother to feel like they were loved by me as though they were my own. They lived with us and I spent a great deal of time with all my kids as my husband worked 2nd shift and was gone from 3-midnight. I felt I did a great job of "mothering" up until they became teenagers. Then the tables turned and things did not work out quite like I dreamed they would. I was a step child too and I know what kind of things really hurt you to the soul. I never wanted that feeling for them. I hope that they do not have that but I am not close with Brandi and I hope that can & will change. Our relationship fell apart when she was 15. Of course it doesn't help that her own mother was never too bright with what she said or did for her children. She was not very supportive of my husband & I when it came to parenting issues. I don't think I'll ever understand the human nature of NOT wanting someone else to love your children. I am excited to have a 2nd chance now with the little one on the way. I don't know what kind of life he/she will have but I plan to be a positive influence for him/her & a Grandma they will never have a doubt about when it comes to love!! YYYYYYY

Just my thoughts for today! 13 days no sugar & a future grandma! :)

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

10 days NO SUGAR!!

The past 2 days have been the hardest! Lots of sugar cravings! Plus they had all kinds of donuts and pastries at work yesterday. I have done really well. I weighed yesterday and only lost 3 pounds but that is a start!

Today I am off work. I still have to go in for a meeting so I'm taking my 9 year old cat with me. He is a total fatty. I hope he does not end up diabetic. He is getting his 6 month exam today with shots and yearly bloodwork so I'll know soon if he has any health issues besides his weight. Then I guess I'll run a couple of errands. Feeling down lately...maybe lack of sugar? Doubt it! Probably just family issues.... wish my 2 older kids could get it together. Nothing could surprise me now....I'm just thankful that at least the youngest is doing well and maturing. We thought he would be the one to worry about. Boy, were we ever wrong!

I made more PMC charms last night. I have not fired them yet. I'll post pictures when they are done.

Sunday, February 8, 2009

A struggles list

I so often feel like I'm struggling with things in life so I thought I'd make of list of 10:

1. finding my voice- I often feel like I have so much to offer but I'm not finding the right medium to express my thoughts or convey my message.

2. excessive worry- mostly over my (adult) kids. I try to turn it all over to God but then they do something totally stupid and the worrying starts all over again!

3. My weight- I have not weighed since I stopped the sugar EIGHT days ago now! I've been doing good! I have been trying to be more active & today I tried a veggie burger for the 1st time. It was really good too. Seems like when I hit 30 everything I ate started staying with me....

4. getting annoyed over stupid little things- I don't know why I start feeling so crabby about the tiniest things sometimes. I have to really try to keep the focus on my thoughts that what I'm feeling irritated about is really NOT THAT BIG A DEAL! Maybe it's an early sign of menopause or something?? I don't know but some days are tough to smile through!

5. Getting enough sleep- Even when I have no caffeine I don't seem to be able to sleep much. I wake up for all kinds of reasons. Sometimes they are not my fault- dog (wants on the bed, off the bed, outside, etc.), husband (snoring, moving around too much, keeping TV on until he falls asleep and then it wakes me up...), kids coming or going in middle of night (which makes the door alarm go "beep-beep" until I get up and shut it off!) I just would like to be comfortable & sleep!!

6. House-hold chores- I don't even want to do them. I have to MAKE myself. I think that is why I like to have motivates me to clean! ;)

7. Creativeness- I have sooooo many ideas that just swirl in my mind of "art" to make. I don't seem to have the time to get to accomplish much of them and then when I do create something, what do I do with it?! I have years worth of created "art" stored away and lots of 1/2 finished projects.

8. Not wanting to go to work: I love my "work" but I really do get too tired of so much. It's hard to describe, without going into all the details. That could be another list of 10 (or more!) for sure!! I am thankful I have a job....

9. Getting my butt to church- I really love my church. I get so much from the sermons, yet Sunday mornings seem to be the hardest day for me to "get going". I piddle too much and time gets away from me or I just feel way to sleepy so I dose off and on until the time is too late.

10. Saving money- you know this had to make the list. Seems like anytime you get the least little bit put back it's needed for something.

Thursday, February 5, 2009


My original photo- untouched. my photo after using Fabian's tutorial:I wanted to recommend a very good tutorial website for photoshop. You have to purchase the tutorials but they are really inexpensive & very, very helpful! I have never taken a Photoshop class so everything I know is self-taught using books, the Internet, & eventually Fabian's tutorials. I found Fabian Barajas a couple of years ago and have bought all his Photoshop for newbies as they came out . They are super easy to follow and have been a huge blessing! Here is the link:

My other "goal" is to take a class from Jim Zuckerman. His website is:
Sign up for his newsletter, you won't regret it! He has several classes: on line, in his home and all over the world. I'd LOVE to do the African Safari class someday but I'd have to hit the lottery! One day I may go to a photo seminar if he comes back to my area but for now I can dream. I'd also like to have the CS2 (at least) version of Photoshop but since I'm not a professional I'll have to make do until my hobby can support it's self.

I have learned a lot from as well. It's for all levels of photography and really gives tips on opening your own business. I'm not sure I'll ever go that route but it's good information. She has links to free tutorials, (that is how I found Fabian's website) and she also has a newsletter. I hope this helps someone. You will have to leave me a comment if you found any of it useful.

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

No sugar!

Today is day 3 with no sugar. Me and 3 of my friends are giving it up for the month of February in hopes that it will curb our cravings, help us snack better, give us more energy, and maybe drop a few pounds. (The photo looks very luscious though! I took it in Myrtle Beach, SC a couple of summers ago during a Veterinary CE conference. It was a big picnic. That would sure be fun now if it wasn't only 9 degree's outside!) A friend of mine's father took sugar out of his diet and lost 20 pounds in a very short time! (That would be very nice). He said the first 2 weeks it was hard but after that your body adjust to it and you don't even want it. I can't imagine me not ever wanting it but February is a good month to try to do without. One, I won't be eating all the Valentine's Day candies and chocolates that flood our office, and two, Feb. is a very short month. :) Anyway, I'm sure I'll have temptations (like tonight my friend texted and said her husband made her brownies! I told her to be strong & eat an orange- like, yah right- who wants an orange when the brownie is right there in front of you!?) Wish me luck & will power! On a different note: Say prayers (lots of prayers!) as my son Cory is taking a 3 hour test for a fireman job soon. If he passes the test he has to go through a series of 5 interviews. Pray, pray, pray. I really feel like God has opened this door for him and it's been such a struggle to keep him positive & faithful. This is the 2nd step and I was so thankful he was chosen to test! Thanks to all who read this and lift him up in prayer! I'll be sure and "blog" any news! ;)

Monday, February 2, 2009


one day my friend came over with her 6 year old daughter. She walked into my home and said, "wow, you have a lot of ornaments!" I had never really looked at it that way before but I looked around and said, "Yes I do." I have accumulated so much STUFF over the years that I thought it would be neat to photograph my STUFF and maybe explain why I don't get rid of it! I don't really see it as clutter. Take for instance my cedar hope chest. My uncle Jim made all his nieces one (& I think great-nieces, etc.) But mine was one of the first. I was in junior high when I got that gift & still cherish it to this day! 17 of the above photos were gifts brought back to me from a dear,elderly friend who travels the world and keeps me in his thoughts. I have oil paintings he bought off the streets of Spain and watercolors from Italy. He has brought me back pottery from places like Turkey and dishes and other fabulous finds from Sweden and other far off places. I have an exquisite old church pew he gave me from his church when they got new ones. I have a ceramic rooster that his mother (who is gone now) painted and won an art award for. My sister Shannon made me the beautiful blue stained glass hanging. She also hand embroidered my rooster wall hanging and my sister Debbie painted me the winter scene and gave it to me as a wedding gift. The big brown trunk that I use as an end table for my sofa my sister Deb had her husband pick up from someones trash to be hauled off. She said, "Stace would love that!" and begged him to go and ask for it. He said he was so embarrassed to ask for someones trash! Deb was right, I do love it! Above is an old carving of a Mexican by my Dad and an early painting he did when he was just beginning to paint. He also made me the wooden raccoon and the wooden checker table top. I have faux turquoise beads that were my mother-in-law's mother's and a "little brown jug" that belonged to my 2nd grade school teacher. She also gave me the very,old,clear Scammon, KS bottle from my childhood hometown. I have tea cups and saucers that were my son's great grandma's from his Dad's side of the family. She passed away only 18 days before he was born. I also have a quilt that was his great-great grandmother's that I keep stored in my amoire display case. It's beautiful as you can see! My father-in-law made me the Adirondack chairs and also the tall wooden bird house. He carved out the welcome log too! My step-dad made the small bird house & he made me cry once when he presented me with the wooden sofa table he hand made for me. We were at a festival and I saw one there I admired and he made it for me for NO REASON and surprised me with it! That was during an awful time of my life and that act of kindness & love uplifted me so much! My mom bought for me the antique cow cookie jar that is identical to the one my Grandma had. It has a special story all it's own but I'll save that for another time. I have several old magazine type cookbooks that were Grandma's too. She wrote all over in them remarks about the recipes. Very cute! My Jesus sculpture was hers & the photo does not do it justice! My uncle Bob made me the stained glass angel and gave it to me for coming out to visit when my aunt died. My grandma that died a year ago gave me some very old pictures that were her mother's. Then after she died my mom passed down some of her things to me; an antique hat pin, old talcum powder bottle & old acorn perfume bottle, old eye spectacles, several pieces of fabric, and handkerchiefs, and a brilliant,red,seed bead necklace (it's too fragile to wear and starting to come apart but I can at least admire it!) I also have a print by Lois Shultz. She was a local artist that took lessons from Walt Disney himself! My older sister Debbie took lessons from her and when I was pregnant she gave me the Raggedy Ann & Andy print. Also, when I was pregnant my friend Diane (who was murdered a few years later) gave me the cute baby tea cup. I have my Grandpa's well water bucket and his old gardening tin. My Grandpa made me my first box. He inscribed a little saying in it and wrote my name. He made me a few more boxes after that and I inherited the wooden wind mill he built for my Grandma along with the dutch girl carrying water. Ironically, the other dutch couple came from my other Grandma's things. I have my mom's old spice rack. I also have a pitcher & cup set that some friends of ours brought back for me from Mexico. It was such a surprise that they would do something so nice for me and it wasn't even Christmas or my birthday! Some of my gal pals from work went together & got me the Rodeo painting. It hung in a window from a shop we had to walk by everyday & I always admired it. Then one day it was gone & they took such pleasure in me fretting over the fact that someone bought it! They kept it put up till Christmas (or my Birthday..I can't remember!)& surprised me with it. I love surprises! It does make me smile every time I pass by it! The beige vase is from a surprise going away party my former employer threw me almost 20 years ago now! It was filled with a giant flower arrangement! My dad & step-mom gave me the giant photo of the miners. My great-grandfather is one of the men. My Grandma gave me the cast iron train bank when I was born. She did that for each grand child (and great,great etc.) until she didn't remember she did that any longer. (Mine used to have silver money in it but when I was in HS our house was robbed & someone tore the bottom off my bank to steal what few coins were in there!) My favorite gift has always been my little dog. I know she is not "stuff" but I couldn't help but include her! Also, I have to tell about one of my favorite surprises. When I graduated tech school my husband surprised me with the tennis bracelet I'm wearing in the photo with Valentine. I thought he would just look at the evening as any other day and instead he gave me the diamond bracelet in front of all my classmates right before I walked on stage to get my diploma! So I bought myself the SPOILED sign. I have a lot of "stuff" if you want to call it that...but ornaments may be a more perfect word!

Sunday, February 1, 2009

Our walk

Yesterday closed out January with record high temperatures! Valentine & I took a walk & I snapped some photos. I love being in the woods. There are so many noises. The wind blows and it makes the tree limbs scrape together and they make the most unusual sounds. I like the crunching sounds under foot. The different squeaks & chirps from the animals. The color palette of nature...the reflections in the pond & the clear blue sky, the turquoise coloring on the tree bark & even the white tips of the pine cone. We were just really blessed with a glimpse of spring & it really inspired me! It been so cold here & this was God's way of telling me to hang in there!