A Triple Play of Emotion

Today has been one of those days that sets emotions all over the scale, quickly!  It was a morning that brought a much anticipated package and before it was over, two phone calls with sad news.

The good news is the mail lady brought my Stamp Platform!  Once opened I was overjoyed to see it and touch it and know it is everything I had hoped for.

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I must tell you how happy I am with Oozak.com, the on-line store through whom I placed my order way back before production was interrupted.  It is really amazing that I got mine this early in July, and I’m thankful too.  I had a scrapbook page on my table nearly done, so needed to finish it up before I can pull anything else out to play stamping on.  I am looking forward to stamping directly on my 12 x 12 layouts now that I can place them perfectly without the horror of miss-stamping something.  I’ve pretty much only stamped background images that do not matter if they come out poorly, other images I stamp on another piece of card stock and cut it out before pasting to the page. 2017Summertimesong

Here is the just finished layout.

The papers are from a pack I recently picked up at Michaels for $7.  It’s all about Arizona, to me, for which I have a big reason to scrap such photos.

My challenge was to use a summer song.  I chose this old song.  According to Wikipedia “Summertime” is an aria composed in 1934 by George Gershwin for the 1935 opera Porgy and Bess. The lyrics are by DuBose Heyward, the author of the novel Porgy on which the opera was based.  I did not know this!  Definitely before my time for real.  For this layout I let the paper do all the work, I just cut and placed.  The title letters were cut with Cricut cartridge, the “sun” stamp is from a set by Stampin’ Up!, the “dream catcher” is from a set by Fun Stampers Journey.

For the sad news number one, while waiting for daughter’s friend to come pick her up for their road trip she got a call from this friend that she had hurt her ankle.  We went over to her house to assess her situation.  With a wrapped ankle she insists on going to this event the girls have been looking forward to all year.  She may be seeking medical attention by the sound of it.  She missed the last step of her front stairs and actually heard a pop.  Oh my – that can’t be good.

After a couple errands I headed home.  I got a phone call from the Prayer Chain lady requesting prayers for the son of a couple we all know.  Brian took an overdose of his medication and is on a respirator.  Very scary.  I promised to pray as soon as I got home.  At my sacred spot, I am now calling this location my sacred spot for prayer and meditation.  It is where I can feel focused and concentrate on praying.  I felt I must read something from my Bible.  I opened it up to Psalms.  I used to sit by Joey’s bed and read to him, especially from Psalms, when he was dying at Hospice, and I sometimes do just that when I need comfort in my grief for him.  So, what I turned to I want to share with you now.

Psalm 5, Prayer for Divine Help

Hear my words, O Lord; listen to my sighing.

Hear my cry for help, my king, my God!

To you I pray, O Lord; at dawn you will hear my cry;

at dawn I will plead before you and wait.

This seemed right, as if the Holy Spirit led me here.  I shared here, not because I believe God will read blog posts on the Internet, but, in the hopes you will join me in this prayer to God for Brian’s well being and that of his family.  Also, why not pray for your loved ones too.

Free to Embrace Eternity

Our Memorial Service to celebrate my son was this past Saturday.  It went perfectly as planned.  I picked out the scripture and the music.  After finding the recordings, Kristy made a CD for one of the church members to play at the appropriate times.  Our dear neighbor and friend carried the crucifix in ahead of the pastor, followed by the 5 closest family members with all others standing in the church.  Just prior to the start of the service I had “On Eagle’s Wings” played as a signal that we were starting, and because I wanted to fit that piece in.   Neighbor Larry also did the first reading from Isaiah.  We had practiced so he would get the pace and clarity I wanted.  Although it wasn’t a problem since the words were written in the bulletin its fun to note that he said “A reading from the book of Israel”.  Kristy did the second reading perfectly which was from the book of First John.  I wanted the message to go out the fact that true love is from God and that Joey truly had much love in him.  Our pastor did a beautiful job.  There were more than 50 people in attendance plus a number of ladies from the church who worked the food and the ushers who truly made everything run so smoothly.  It was a pleasure to see some family and friends we hadn’t seen in a while.

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I wrapped the container of Joe’s ashes in satin and added a lace trim.  I had the arrangement made to place in front of 3 white roses.  This was placed on a table in front of the altar.  For me the 3 roses symbolize first the Holy Trinity, but also the three of us as one loving and family unit – Joe, Kris and me.  I picked the lace because it reminds me of the body and blood of Christ – see the grape like clusters along the bottom and the circle/wafer of the center row?  And even the stars of Heaven are present.

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Being such a private person, we set up a small display table to hold photos mostly.

I made prayer cards, I suppose you could say, by collecting photos and printing 4” x 6” photos.  On the back side I added his dates and the prayer of St Francis of Assisi.  If anyone takes this message of giving to others in memory of Joe with them, just think of the good that could be shared.

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I made the Guest sign in book from Stampin’ Up’s quality card stock.  I used night of navy and very vanilla.  The words “In Loving Memory” on the cover are made with the Cricut using basic gray and vanilla.  The cross is stamped and heat embossed with silver.  The flowers are from the “Heartfelt Thanks” SU set and are cut out.  The butterflies are from a die by SU.  The inside is computer generated as were the pages with the lines titled “Guests”.  The book is tied together with SU’s crocheted trim.

The pastor printed this on the back of the bulletins that I wrote.  It was my attempt to find peace within as I face each day without him.

As I look out across my world each day

I will see you in its renewing effort of life.

The joy that filled your eyes as you watched nature dance,

from the eagle, the sandhill cranes, the colorful dragonflies

to the mighty alligators and precious baby turtles you saved,

I will forever see them now with a remembered love of you.

You will always be the brightest light of remembered joy

in the corner of my heart.

May you be wrapped in love

true to the love you always gave to others

now, finally at peace,

finally free to embrace eternity.

Love, Mom

Lack of Oxygen for Too Long

In addition to the physical changes, most importantly my precious Joe will not return in the capacity we would all hope for.  His brain was without oxygen for too long.  More than 4 minutes, much more.  He is now breathing through the trach on his own without the help of the ventilator.  His body is strong and showing signs of healing.  Now is the wait for the brain to heal as much as it can.  He is still mostly sleeping, with the help of meds to reduce the anxiety and reduce his pain.  Monday he will have another go with an “eeg” and CAT scan.

To all who have asked if they can put him on their prayer list I full heartedly shout YES!  And to anyone and everyone who pops in to read this, I ask for your prayers as well.

Here is a photo from the last photo shoot with him.DSCN2020web

He had a loving time with this puppy that was dropped off at our home Saturday.  Always so caring, loving and giving, this horrid depression that plagued him for all his life got the best of him.  Hope is strong in his loving family that his brain will heal to a far greater extent.  I find that I must stay in the moment for the most part but right now I am posting a photo of the past so that I can solicit all your prayers for healing you can send.  His brain has lots of repairing to do and it is in God’s hands for now.

Driving Out the Demons

When I travel too far from the teachings I know to be true and sound, I fall into relying solely on my own devices for figuring out how to run my life. This morning I had one of those moments where I wanted to quit life, give up on trying to make things work right, forget about the people I love and all the trouble it was taking to just survive.

I shouted out, “I want to give up!” I got some horrified looks and I stormed off to my bedroom. I didn’t throw anything, didn’t even slam my door, just slipped away. I knew then I needed to regroup – big time.

The first thought that came to mind was to spend some quality quiet time with my Bible. The answers are there and I had let time spent in study of Scriptures slip far away from my daily existence.  I knew answers could be found if I looked inside that book. So, I propped up my big black pillow that supports my back when I sit up in bed, picked up my dusty study Bible from my bedside, and noticed my notebook there too. This notebook is a help of previous thoughts and ponderings. My eyes fell on Scripture from Mark. Here are my thoughts on Mark 9:14-29.

Jesus disciples were unable to drive out a “demon” because of lack of prayer and their lack of trust in God.

Two points: 1) How can I hope to accomplish my goals and dreams if these men – Jesus’ disciples – couldn’t do the task they attempted? They were actually with Jesus! And their faith and trust lacked?! 2) I didn’t have the so called advantage of being in Jesus’ presence but I have a two thousand year advantage of intellectual exposure to Jesus’ teaching. My life needn’t be cluttered with the day to day burden of survival as those mens lives were. At the most they had three years with him – I’ve had a half century.

Lesson: Get my prayer life back in order and stop doubting what I know to be true about the power Jesus – the Son of God – has and makes available to me today.

Key verse: Mark 9:23 – Jesus said to him, “If you can! Everything is possible to one who has faith.”

As a note to understand, in vs. 22 the father of the afflicted boy said “If you can do anything…”  Jesus came back with “if you can!” to make his point – “If” doesn’t cut it. You have to have full faith.

Get this: EVERYTHING is possible to one who HAS FAITH! No ‘ifs’ but a positive yes it is to be true and for real.

So, have faith. We all can build on our faith. I will pray to build my faith. Taking a time out – preferably often – to read sacred Scripture and pray for understanding and direction – and listening – will renew our frazzled existence.  He promises this. And I know it to be so.