Friday, April 30, 2010

Flashback Friday #23

Since May is rolling around... I thought I'd post a flashback from last May.

When I was 20, I got a job at a local welding and fabricating company. I was a clerical assistant. I did all of the grunt work of filing and data entry. There were days that I loved it.... and days that I HATED it! My supervisor was... um... shall we say... not very nice sometimes (to put it mildly). She would go ON about having stayed at the office until 6PM catching up on work... but she failed to mention that she came in at 9 or 9:30AM. The rest of us came in at 6 or 7 (sometimes earlier) and left at 4 or 4:30 (sometimes later). We had little sympathy for her "long" days... especially because the majority of her days were spent planted in her computer chair.

Anywho... as the years went by, I started taking on more and more responsibilities. Business was BOOMING and luckily, my supervisor moved to a different department, so I got a new one!

WOOT!

It was the bosses son. Intimidating? Not at all.. considering we went to school together (although we were a few years apart... and he was the best friend of my cousin). We got along well. He actually listened to my ideas and concerns about the workplace, etc.

As business grew, the need for shipping grew. I had been given the duties of Shipping Clerk early on as a part of my clerical assistant job... but it started to take on a life of it's own a couple of years in. We ended up hiring a new girl to take on my data entry stuff... and created a full time shipping position for MOI! Again... there were days I loved it and days I hated it. Mostly I just tolerated it. The best part was getting to go down to the warehouse to give them paperwork and sometimes help with packaging. I made some really good friends in that warehouse!

About a year after I took on the full time Shipping position, the guy who took care of Receiving had to have surgery on his eyes (he was going blind). My supervisor came to me and asked if I would be interested in combining the Shipping & Receiving... UH. YEAH. I got to move out of my cubicle into my own office in a different building! Yeehaw! It was so nice to be out from under the thumb of the office chums... and I really enjoyed what I did. I got to check in parts and boxes, do computer work, deliver items to different parts of the plant. Plus, I could get away with wearing jeans, boots and hoodies. Of course, there were some annoyances along the way... but that was just part of the job! I got to learn how to drive forklift and was soon loading and unloading trucks. Eventually, we were so busy that we split Shipping and Receiving AGAIN... and I got my OWN mini-office! SAAAWEEET! It was right outside of the warehouse, so I was able to be RIGHT there with my warehouse workers. Plus, I had my own heat and A/C control, my own laser color printer/scanner, microwave, mini-fridge, computer, filing cabinet, bulletin board, etc! I definitely couldn't complain..... OK... other than the fact that people would come in and there was pretty much NO room to move around! Anyway... I was in my little office for about a year and then came the time to give it up! I had gotten engaged to Cory in October and our wedding was in May of 2009. We had already planned to move an hour away (closer to his job)... so I was going to quit mine.

Around this time, the company was doing a BUNCH of lay offs. The economy, as you well know, had turned to CRAP. It just so happens that the day we took these last couple of pics... was the last day we were all together. I'm so glad we got them... even though we look like dorks! (We HAD to wear hard hats... LOL!)

Here are some of my friends from those 5 years.
(The guy second from the right is the guy I trained to take over my position)

This last picture is of the actual "classic" warehouse crew... Me, Bob, John and Sandy!
I miss those guys! But thank goodness we can keep in touch via Facebook! And sometimes I stop in just to say HEY!

Join in the Flashback FUN over at Christopher&Tia's!!

Thursday, April 29, 2010

A Quick Fix

So, yesterday I went out to my parents' place of business to clean. On the way, I stopped at my parents' house to say HEY to my mom and nephew (he had a sleepover and was going to be spending the day with us). As I was waiting for my mom to get off the phone (she is always on the phone!) Jaxson and I got to talking about our "boo-boos". We both had one on our fingers... mine, however was newer than his and still looks pretty sore. He said to me, "Why don't you put a band-aid on it?"... I told him that I did but it just wouldn't stay on very well... and he turns to me and says "Oh, you have to take the paper off!" (You know, so the sticky stuff would be exposed... LOL... I thought that was pretty clever for a 4 year old).

Anyway... later on at the garage, my aunt brought my grandma in for lunch. We sat in the break room and ate our sandwiches and eventually my dad decided to relax in his recliner for the rest of lunch break. Us women just sat there and gabbed while he put a pillow over his head and zoned out. After a little bit, my eyes just happened to notice this:

Can you tell what that is??

It is the bottom of his shoe..... with FOUR bolts in it. (????)

Later on when he woke up, I asked why in the world he had bolts in the bottom of his shoe. His reply... "to tap dance"... as he clicked his foot around on the floor. LOL... Then he said that they were to hold his shoes together. Quite the quick fix. I don't know how it doesn't drive him bonkers!

I guess I know what to get him for Father's Day!!


Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Need a Tissue?

I have been enjoying sewing up some little tissue holders lately!



I also tried my hand at a drawstring bag/back pack.
(It looks small, but it fits my shoulders/back quite nicely)
I even included a little pocket for decoration... can you see it?


And my first ever attempt at sewing a zipper! It wasn't as hard as I'd expected!


Have you been working on any projects lately??

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

I Am Not An Artist.

I went through a phase in elementary school where I wanted to be a teacher. How hard could it be to teach little kids a bunch of stuff that was EASY? I have always been pretty good at spelling and reading... I never cared much for history or science... and math.. well, I could do the easy stuff... so why wouldn't that be the perfect job? AND... you get your summers off!

Well... once I got to the point where I realized that I would have to put up with a class full of unpredictable kids... and it wouldn't all just be writing on the chalk board, decorating bulletin boards and putting stickers on top of papers... I sort of gave up that idea. Honestly, it was the stickers and the bulletin board decorating (ok.. AND the summers off) that was the most appealing.

So later on through junior high and high school... I wanted to be an artist (assuming of course that first and foremost I would be a wife and mom. One down... one to go). I never really thought about the fact that it is HARD to be an artist. You have to be good to make a name for yourself or you have to become a teacher if you want to make any money. Well, considering that my rinky dink school didn't have a very good art department... I didn't learn a whole heck of a lot. At all. I remember playing with polymer clay. That's about it. No learning about art history or the color wheel, etc. And forget about learning the ins and outs of art shows and displaying your work in galleries. My teachers were lame.

I went to college and felt 100% lost in my art courses. Talk about feeling like a shmuck! I applied for college to be in the pottery program. Come to find out, since there were so many upperclassmen (is that even a college term?) that wanted to take Ceramics as a blow-off course... they wouldn't let me even take one of their beginner's courses. I was peeved... but what can ya do? So in place of that, my adviser suggested taking a Weaving course. I told her that I didn't know a THING about it... and she assured me that it was no problem (come to find out that SHE was the weaving instructor.. LOL!). So I signed up. One course of weaving and although I was still lost about things like FORM and TEXTURE... I loved being at the loom. I liked the atmosphere of the studio.. and felt such satisfaction when I would complete a project. I liked it so much that I bought my OWN loom (CHA-CHING!)! Unfortunately, it is a BIG project to take on... so in 9 years, I have only used it a few times.

Anyway.... I dropped out of college... since I didn't think I could pay off school loans by being a Potter............. AND I didn't want to teach it (and my college didn't offer art education anyway, so I would've had to switch schools). My mom and I took some pottery courses in the evenings for a couple of years... and it was a heck of a lot cheaper than college! My mom set up a small studio and we threw some pottery for a couple of festivals. I LOVED IT! But life gets so busy and it was easy to let it go by the wayside. Then when I moved an hour away last year, it made it even harder to even consider working in the studio.

So here I am at home. For almost a year now.... and I could work on my loom... but there is just something about being in a studio that makes me motivated. I don't have a studio. My loom takes up 3/4 of my dining room because we don't have anywhere else to put it. We have considered turning the basement into a pottery studio... but I don't have the money for my own wheel and kiln, etc. Plus, we need the space in the basement for storage of garage/basement type things.

As much as I would love to get back into pottery and whip out some awesome stuff on my loom... it's not practical at this point in my life. What I CAN do... is sew... and cut.. and glue and doodle and lino cut... stamp... paint.... write... There is a TON of stuff I can do... that I enjoy doing. It may not label me as an "artist"... but I definitely consider myself a crafter. I used to HATE that term. It made me think of wooden cut outs painted like cartoons with little googly eyes glued on. ICK! But the word has really evolved these days... and though I may not be "professional"... I like being creative in my own ways... and "crafter" suits me just fine!!

Look what I've been working on the past couple of days.... These are envelopes made out of old calendars. I can't WAIT to use them!!


Maybe one of these days I'll have a real studio... :)

Monday, April 26, 2010

Please Say a Prayer...


I take Cory to get a CT Scan today. He has been having some odd symptoms on the left side of his face for the past week and a half. Numbness, tingling, etc. After going to the doctor early last week, we were told that it could be a number of things... anxiety and stress related, Bell's Palsy (paralysis of the face), among other things. We ultimately have ruled out Bell's Palsy due to the fact that his face never drooped... and usually that happens almost over night. Of course, Cory has been reading online about all the sorts of diagnosis (tumors, blood vessel issues, etc)... so we are anxious to get the results! Please keep us in your prayers today as we are both very nervous!!

Friday, April 23, 2010

Flashback Friday #22

In Remembrance...

My great grandma passed away this week. She was 95 years old and was READY to go, having been bed ridden and not even able to hold her own head up anymore. Her Memorial Service was yesterday and it was a happy time knowing that she wasn't suffering and knowing that she was now up in heaven with great grandpa (which is what she wanted for 9 years since his passing)!

Here is a picture of me and her from last March at my bridal shower. This is not how I remember her in my mind... I think I'll always remember the way she looked while I was growing up.

I love you great grandma!

Head over to Christopher&Tia's for more Flashbacks!

Thursday, April 22, 2010

MAXED.

**Warning: This post is a little out of control!**

I am feeling quite maxed out today...

My dog had to go to the vet on Tuesday to get her ear checked out (all is OK)... but we did her yearly exam, shots, etc... and the bill was OUTRAGEOUS. Not to mention that the drive to the vet is like 45 mins one-way. CHA-CHING!

Wednesday, I went out to clean at my dad's garage (an hour drive one-way... plus all of the annoying government construction)... and things were hectic with people and trying to clean and get things done. I just felt kind of crazy yesterday... and I was so glad to come home and relax.

Well, today I had to drive to my hometown AGAIN because my great grandma passed away (it's not really a sad thing because she was 95 and ready to go! We're happy she's up dancing with Jesus!!!).... the memorial service was today. Well, I have already been feeling maxed and wiped out... and on the way there ... I got behind a vintage-antique-whatever automobile that didn't go more than 35 mph. If you've ever been to PA... it's not the flattest of places. So between following this geek and the 2 log trucks and 3 other cars in front of me (but behind him)... it was all I could do to not get road rage and try to pass them all at once while honking my horn uncontrollably!!!! If your car doesn't go more than 35 mph going DOWNHILL... you probably should be pulling it on a trailer... not holding up a line of 20 cars behind you (with construction every 2 miles or so). UGH... Then of course at the service... it wasn't really a sad time... but sometimes I have very little patience for other people's kids. They let them run around and act wild... in a funeral home. Very inappropriate... and I had a hard time not wanting to grab the kid(s) and make them sit down and BE QUIET!! STRESSSSSSSSS! After the service, a bunch of us went to lunch... but I don't really have the money for that. (Stressss!)... The service at the restaurant was horrible (waiting 20 mins for you drink is just unacceptable)... and THEN they wanted to charge me TWO DOLLARS for having a bill under $20 and using my debit card. I think that's illegal... but whatever. I walked outside and across the street to an ATM (which was luckily my own bank so I didn't have to pay a fee) and just came back in and paid with cash. THEN... I drove another 20 miles or so out of my way to check out a store that had something that THE BRIDE (I am such a sucker, I know) was hoping to use for her reception. I pulled into the store and got out of my car and "SMACK! BOOM! CRASH!"... there was an accident only two cars behind me on the road!! I was thrown into panic mode... and rushed out to see what happened. Meanwhile one of the cars was driving out of control (the car wouldn't stop until the lady finally turned off the key) and coming right toward me..... so I moved the heck out of the way and called 911. Have you ever had to make a call to 911?? This was the first time I did... and I still am feeling stressed!!! My arms and legs still feel like jelly! Luckily, though one car was totaled, I think everyone was generally OK. After all of that... I did what I needed to do at the store and headed back home... only to realize that I had left my sewing machine at my mom's from earlier (I had to leave early today to take it to her because she needed to fix something on her pants before the memorial service). CRAP. Not to mention, we have no money left in our budget for the month... I have to drive BACK out there on Saturday because I am volunteering at a Literacy Fair and also at a concert for The Teen Center................ and I am just COMPLETELY maxed out!

All of the driving is making me CRAZY! Plus the lack of money in the budget... BAHHH!

I just need to go to bed already.... Sorry for sounding like a complete complainy-bum!

Also--Cory has been having some confusing medical issues that we are concerned about... so that is factoring into my mental instability of the week!!!! Please keep him in your prayers!

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

"Unmade" -Sleeping At Last

Just wanted to share the new video from one of my all time favorite bands!! Enjoy!

Monday, April 19, 2010

Time to Move On....

"The only people that you need in your life are the ones that prove they need you in theirs" -Unknown

Have you ever had a one-sided friendship? You know, the kind where YOU are the friend that makes all of the effort to keep in contact. YOU are the one who calls, texts, sends cards or notes (sometimes even presents!!), etc.... only to barely get a Thank You or even a reply at all? I've been thinking about that lately. I have a couple of friendships that have seemed to go in this direction. I am constantly the one trying to keep in contact... and then I wonder why in the world I am the one that always has to make the effort? It also makes me wonder if the person(s) doesn't really even care to keep in contact at all? Maybe they don't want to be my friend... because I'm pretty sure a friendship doesn't work that way.
I've been thinking on this awhile... and I've pretty much come to the conclusion that I have to make the decision to be over it. I may still send a birthday card or Christmas card... but other than that, BUH-BYE. I'm tired of being the one to make the first move... or ALL of the moves. Time to move ON! It's a little sad... and I really don't like to be the kind of person who only sends the obligatory card around the Holidays... but at the same time... the only thing I seem to be losing is the time I would've wasted on trying to keep in touch--with no reciprocation.

Onward and upward, I say!!

Sunday, April 18, 2010

Giveaway Winner!!

Well, I probably should have let my giveaway last longer than 2 days since I only had a handful of entries... however, the chances were better for the people who DID enter... and the winner is:

Brittany over at Little Miss Scatterbrained!

Congratulations Brittany!

I tried to "print screen" the results to post them here for proof that the random number generator chose #3.... but I can't figure out how to do it... so I apologize!!

Thanks to everyone that entered!!

Friday, April 16, 2010

Flashback Friday #21

Well, it's Flashback Friday again! I skipped last week because I was just too busy... and this week is going to be pretty quick!

Here is a picture of me only a couple of months old... I know I am biased... but I think I'm pretty cute! Hehe!


Join in the Flashback Fun over at Christopher&Tia's!.... and GO HERE to check out my 300th Post Giveaway!!!

Thursday, April 15, 2010

300th Post Giveaway!!!!

**This Giveaway is CLOSED**
Well folks, it's my 300th post.


I so much love entering (and winning, although that doesn't happen too often) giveaways, I thought I'd host my own celebrating 300 bloggy posts! Up for grabs is a couple of things I have sewn. A tissue holder... which I never thought I'd ever want to use one of those in a million years... but after making a few and putting a pack of tissues in, I realize that it sure is nice to have your tissues protected in your purse from crumbs and fuzzies. I don't know about you, but if I need a tissue while I'm out and about somewhere, I really don't want to be wiping my nose with unknown crumbs! (Where do those crumbs come from!?) Haha! Also, I am including a little drawstring bag that would be perfect for feminine items, pens or whatever else you can think of to stash in your purse!


**This Giveaway is CLOSED**

Here's how you can enter:
(Please leave one comment per entry and make sure to include a way that I can contact you in case you are the winner!)

*Mandatory*
1. Follow my blog & leave me a comment telling me that you are a follower (if you are already a follower, just mention)

*Optional*
1. Blog about my giveaway (put the link in your comment)
2. Visit my friend Christina's Etsy Shop over at CoffeeAndCream ... comment to me about which item you like the most!

Giveaway will end Saturday, April 17th at MIDNIGHT (Eastern Standard Time). I will post the winner on my blog on Sunday (I will also contact the winner via email or blog). Winner will be selected by a random number generator.

GOOD LUCK!!


I also want to say HAPPY BIRTHDAY to my dad!! The big old 5-1 today!
I LOVE YOU!!

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Maddy Sews

The other day, my niece had a sleepover at my house. This doesn't happen very often due to the hour long car ride (one way) between us. Since I have been doing some sewing projects, and Madelyn was interested in the things that I made... I offered to help her make something of her own. Here she is, mostly doing the whole thing on her own... with only being directed by me! (Please don't mind her unruly hair... she had just gotten out of the shower and we hadn't "done each others hair" yet. Also, don't mind my disheveled craft room!)
She did a pretty good job... and she was VERY excited!!

I also wanted to share a picture of the giveaway items I won from over at JJ's... (check out her blog for an easy make-it-yourself granola recipe... I am looking forward to trying this recipe soon!)
I *won* the zipper pouch (totally cute!)... but she also included a little sticky chicky notepad and a handmade dish cloth (my fav kind to use!)... oh yes, she also included some jelly beans, but Cory confiscated those to take with him to work before I could include them in the picture! Thanks JJ!!

Check back to my blog tomorrow for my very own giveaway celebrating my 300th post!!!

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Is it sad...

... that the only things I like the newspaper for are:

coupons

advice columns

and...

comics

?

Saturday, April 10, 2010

Some days I feel FREE.


Before I was married, I was working full time at a very demanding job. I enjoyed parts of it... other parts of it, I loathed. But two days before I walked down the aisle, I worked my last day at a job I had known for 5 and a half years. That job, volunteering, church and Cory were my life. When Cory and I got home from our honeymoon (to Scotland!) I felt odd. I was free! I didn't HAVE to get up at 4:30 or 5 in the morning to head to a job every day. I had moved an hour away from my volunteering and church activities, so those things were put on hold for the most part. I was left to get my house in order and... well... I almost didn't know what to do with myself!! It was great! But it felt odd at the same time.

Cory and I planned to start trying for a family right off the bat. I knew a little about the way a woman's cycle worked... and pretty much thought I would be pregnant within a couple of months or so. I spent my time cleaning, cooking, yard work, reading, etc. I was soaking up the seemingly endless hours of my days until Cory came home from work.... and just waiting for the good news of a positive test. June, July, August....

September, October, November.

As the months passed, I found myself feeling like I was just going through the motions. That "freedom" I had so relished in the first few months of marriage started closing in on me. I had some projects for Christmas to keep me somewhat busy... but the snow came and I was cooped up in the house... hoping each month that it would be THE month. I stopped feeling free. I started feeling TRAPPED.

6 months I had been staying at home, expecting to be EXPECTING. But I wasn't.

If I am being totally honest with you, I started feeling like a failure. Inadequate. Less of a woman. I can't say that I slipped into a depression... but each month got harder for me emotionally. Cory did his best to comfort me. I'm thankful for that.

In December, I decided to order the book "Taking Charge of Your Fertility". I got it for 18 cents on Amazon (plus shipping) and immediately began reading. I couldn't believe all of the information about a woman's cycle I never knew! They don't teach you that stuff in Sex Ed... although maybe they should. I realized that I was living by the 28 day myth. Not every woman's cycle is 28 days... so obviously ovulation doesn't occur on day 14 for everyone. I sort of knew that... but I always tried to count back on the calendar and basically convinced myself that I was "normal" with a 28 day cycle. Boy, was I wrong! I printed out the chart from the website and decided that at the new year, I'd begin charting my Basal Body Temps. If you don't know much about it, you should not be discouraged--you should get the book!!

For the first time in months, I felt hope.

Of course, I knew that I couldn't expect immediate results since I was just starting out and getting used to the whole thing.... but I still hoped. Three and a half months later, I've got the charting down... but still no BFP (Big Fat Positive).

I can tell you, it's hard. It's hard to see friends and relatives, even people I don't know, pregnant or having babies. There is this part of me that aches inside. I haven't really posted about it until now because I haven't wanted to seem "weak" or "unhappy"--because the truth is, I AM happy and I'm not weak. I'm human.

I take each day as it comes.

I decided that instead of waiting and waiting... and waiting... to turn our 2nd bedroom into a nursery, I would turn it into my craft/sewing room. I had the idea one day after looking at some great blogs with pictures of their organized spaces. I tossed the idea around for a couple of days. I mentioned it to Cory. But I couldn't bring myself to start the transformation (if that's what you can call it.. haha!). I felt like the minute I started to rearrange and organize that room... I was giving up. Even though I was still charting and "trying"... setting up that room as a craft room instead of a nursery felt to me like I was losing hope. I struggled with that.

But I prayed.

And even though I was sick with a horrible cold, I started the project. Organizing fabrics and notions, stationery, books, cds, etc. I moved around furniture to a semi-acceptable state (the room is shaped weird, so it's a tough fit)... but I made it happen. And you know what? I didn't feel like I was giving up on a baby. I felt like I was living my life. And that was... and is OK. Since then, I have been enjoying sewing almost every day in that room (all the while, listening to Glenn Beck on the radio... WOOT!).

I am slowly learning, through prayer and I guess, experience... that my time line can't dictate my life. It is so easy to lose my focus. To feel inadequate. To feel like I'm not fulfilling my purpose in life because I don't have a child... (one of the number one desires of my heart). But God's plan is perfect and I need to TRUST in Him.

Lately, I've been starting to feel that freedom creep back in... and boy does it feel good.

I encourage you, if you are struggling with infertility (or anything, for that matter).... Pray. And if you don't know how to pray or what to pray, send me an email. I will pray for you. I'll talk to you. I know I'm not one of those people who has tried for YEARS and YEARS... but that doesn't make my situation any less important... and neither is yours.

Thursday, April 8, 2010

Enter The Worship Circle

Over the years, Enter The Worship Circle has kept me going by praising Him. I wanted to share one of my favorites with you today.

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

This Little Piggy...

The past couple of days I have been trying my hand at sewing stuffed animals. Cory's friend and his wife just had a baby and I wanted to send something handmade instead of something store bought. I first tried to make little baby blocks (you know, the square fabric blocks for babies?). Well, that went OK... but I just wasn't thrilled with the way it turned out. I mean, it was fine... but I didn't have any desire to make any more. So I turned my attention to a pattern I had gotten for my birthday last year. Cute little stuffed animal elephant, pig, cat and giraffe. I liked the pig... so I decided to go for it!


After a few tries, I think I decided which one I'd like to send.

I hope they like it. It's definitely not perfect... but I still think it's cute!

Cory and I decided to color Easter eggs last week to take to his parents house for Easter. We decided to make one for ourselves, but didn't want to give his parents a carton with one egg missing! So we decided to try coloring a brown egg from our chickens...


Not too shabby!!

I hope you all had a great Easter!
HE IS RISEN!

Sunday, April 4, 2010

Friday, April 2, 2010

Flashback Friday #20

When I was little I loved make up. Of course, I was never allowed to wear it... not until I was in junior high. Even then, it was only just a little. But every once and awhile, when I was still in elementary school, my mom would give in and let me sit on top of the toilet in the bathroom while she ran the soft brush of the eyeshadow on my eyelids. If I was really lucky, I would even get to wear a little mascara (and boy was it hard not to blink and get little black marks all around my eyes!!). And most exciting, the lipstick!!

Originally this picture was in color so you could see the blue of my eyeshadow and the red of my lips! But the copy I have was converted to black and white to put in a huge picture frame (of multiple old & new pics of me and Cory) for our wedding reception last year.


Join in the fun over at Christopher&Tia's!!