Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Angels at Work...Once Again

Okay, so I've got a pretty busy day today.  Actually, a pretty busy week.  So I'm figuring I won't be visiting my fave blogs and leaving my witty comments for a while!

Today, I have a date with a surgeon.  I'm not expecting a fancy dinner or tickets to a great show.  Nope, this is one of those, "I'll meet you at the hospital" kind of dates.  Besides, you all know how in love I am with my PG.  There's not another man that could turn my head!!

But I have a pretty compelling argument to hook up with this surgeon guy.  A few weeks ago, I went to the ER with some tummy pain.  Thinking it was maybe a bowel obstruction (I did my webMD research, y'know), it advised that I should probably see a doctor without delay.  Well, it had nothing to do with obstructions.  It turned out I had a case of pancreatitis that cleared up nicely in about a week.  BUT, in doing the tests to diagnose it, the radiologist found a mass in my kidney that we weren't really expecting to find.  And it's a mass that appears to be a tumor.  So it's gotta come out.  The bummer in all this is I've only got the one kidney and would like to keep as much of it as possible.  You see, 11 years ago I had the other one removed for the very same reason. 

Now you may ask why I'm giving you all these personal details.  BOTH times, it was a fluke that these tumors were found.  Both times, it was a matter of having another health issue that sent me to the doctor.  And both times, it was an observant radiologist that noticed the mass in the kidney.  The thing about kidney cancer is that if it's not found early enough, it's practically a death sentence.  There is no chemo or radiation that will work on renal cell carcinoma.  (I'm not a doctor, I don't play one on TV, but I've done my research).  The other thing is, it happens to men twice as often as it happens to women.  So I am not a likely candidate for this diagnosis.  But I am one VERY lucky chica to have had it found twice early enough to save my life.  
My first attempt at drawing faces!!
Gotta fix those wings!

Which brings me to the title of this post.  I am always in awe when I feel the presence of my guardian angels.  (I'm figuring I have more than one, because I've put them thru a whole lot in my lifetime - too much for one to handle!!).  But situations like this are what convince me that we do have them.  Sometimes, they have to work extra long to nudge you to do what is in your best interest.  I'm glad I finally listened.  It probably saved my life!!

So I will see you in about a week.  Please keep me in your prayers.  And please....listen to your angels.  It might be as simple as an idea that pops into your head out of nowhere, or it might be something nagging you for a while.  But give some serious thought to it being your angel at work!!

Sunday, April 24, 2011

A Lifelong Student

When I had the opportunity to go to college (I was in my 40s, lost a job and was able to take advantage of federal programs that helped to fund college for those who lost their jobs), I figured out I would likely be a lifelong student.  This from a girl who really, REALLY didn't like high school.  And now I work at that high school, but I digress...

So I embraced the adventure of obtaining a bachelor's degree.  I had a ball!!!  Many times, I was the oldest in the class, and added a different outlook to many class discussions.  But when it came time to get my master's degree, I realized that I didn't want to go down that road.  I was happy doing the type of work I was doing.  I didn't want a degree where I'd then be expected to supervise people.  And at that later age, I realized that I could make that decision and be okay with it.  But I still wanted to learn things. 

So I started looking at classes in the community and online classes.  I've taken a number of Big Picture Classes that will help me get a handle on my scrapbooking and photography.  Tracey Clark, Ali Edwards, Karen Grunberg, Stacy Julian, Elisha Snow...and the list goes on.

Big Picture Classes

I've taken organizing classes, which help me with my word of the year. 

Have fun and get more done with simplify 101

My latest adventure is to learn more about art journaling. 

Visit 21 SECRETS

I'm hoping to post some of my art journaling soon.  The nice thing about it is that there is no right or wrong.  Same thing with scrapbooking.  And actually, same thing with organizing.  Hmmmm... I like that!!!

Friday, April 22, 2011

I Won - I Won!!!!

My blog buddy, Leslie, over at Words of Me Project had a giveaway of some Brave Girl Art that she created!!  Since I'm a regular of her blog, I left my comment!!  Whatdya know!!  I won!!  (Sorry, Leanne, I know you wanted to win, darlin'!) 
I'm looking forward to hanging that reminder in my Craft Cave to remind me I CAN do it even if I've been telling myself I don't know how!!!  And I plan on using the inspiration to help me be brave enough to step outside my comfort zone.
Thanks, Leslie!!

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

In Search of...

Homework from
Ali Edward's
Yesterday & Today
 Last weekend, I got a letter in the mail from the reunion committee of my elementary school.  I attended a parochial grade school in the 'burbs.  We moved there when I was in third grade.  So this letter reminds me that it's been 45 years (okay, so you do the math!!) and that it's time to get together to find out what we we've all been up to.  

When I contacted one of the organizers, I mentioned to her that I'm not sure how effective I'd be in reaching out to people, since I don't feel I was well liked in grade school.  Her words in reply made a lot of sense... "I don't think that you were not well liked.. I think we were all trying to figure out who we each were..I truly feel that we all felt awkward..some of us just hid it better than others...I was just trying to make it through each day.

My oldest grandson is in 7th grade already.  I know he's had his struggles, including dealing with bullies.   It really is an awkward time in kids' lives.  They are still trying to find out who they are, outside of their family environment.  They are still trying to "become" someone. 

So how do you teach your kids that it's okay to be themselves, when they aren't quite sure who they are?  I know it's not a lesson of the week sort of thing.  It's an "all the time, plenty of examples" type of lesson.  A life lesson.  

I work in a high school.  Adults who have survived raising a teenager know that the whole identity thing is pretty much a given in high school.  Rarely, very rarely, do you find a kid who knows who they are, where they're going, and are comfortable in their skin knowing it. I am in awe of those kids and the parents who helped them get to that point in their lives.  So what was their magic formula??

Imagine how rich you'd be if you could just come up with that recipe!!!!!

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Happy Birthday, PG!!

He doesn't like people to know his age.  Says that people treat you differently once they find out you're older than they thought.  But I have to tell you that most people experience a jaw dropping moment when they find out how old he is. 

I'm the luckiest girl in the world that he came into my life.  And although he wants nothing as a birthday celebration, I can't help but tell all my blogger friends about this wonderful man.

Happy Birthday, PG!! 

Sunday, April 10, 2011

Another Birthday Celebration

Today, we celebrated my youngest brother's birthday.  Not all of my siblings could attend but for those that did, we had a nice lunch and a yummy birthday cake.  It seems hard to believe that it's been a year since we threw a surprise party to celebrate his 50th birthday. 

My Oldest & Youngest Brothers

On my way home, I was thinking about how things have changed over the years when it comes to getting together with my brothers and sisters and sisters-in-law.  When our kids were young, family birthday parties were usually held on a Sunday.  Monday morning would find the "sisters" (that includes the SILs) on the phone doing our post-party debrief.  Who talked about whom, who insulted whom, who's not talking to whom, whose kid was a terror, whose kid was an angel.  The whole deal!!! 

Courtesy of obsolescing.wordpress.com

As our kids got older, the Monday morning debriefs ended (mostly because we were then working outside the home), and we would touch base with one another sometime during the week.  It would usually start out with, "We had a great time at the party..." 

But now, things are different.  We are comfortable sitting around, chatting about our kids and grandkids, enjoying our time together.  Maybe it's because we share a history that's over a half century old.  Maybe because we realize that all of that stuff really doesn't matter.   But we had a nice time today.  Comfortable. 
And we celebrated my kid brother's birthday!!

Life is Good!!!  Happy Birthday, Kevin!

Saturday, April 9, 2011

Some Time in the Craft Cave

I've spent a little time in the cave lately.  You see, the love of my life likes to watch shows I don't.  I'm not into watching murder and mayhem.  But that doesn't mean he shouldn't if he enjoys it!  And we are a ONE TV family.  Shocker, I know!!!

But I finally decided that while he's watching his faves, I can run up to the Craft Cave and play with my faves.  What a satisfying week I've had!!

Leslie at Words of Me Project mentioned an 11 year old friend of the family who suffered a stroke.  They are holding a fundraiser for her and Leslie reached out to her blogger friends for donations.  I'm not super talented when it comes to mixed media art, but I do enjoy making journals.  So I worked on these and will be getting them into the mail on Monday.  I love how they turned out. 

Here's a close up of each of them.   


 So that's what I've been up to lately.  How about you?  What's keeping you busy???