Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Working on Thomas' album and the church album

For the first time in a very long time, I am planning to get in my scrap room and actually work on both of these albums. I really need to work on these and get something done for a change! With all the things we have had going on in our lives over the past several months I have not had a chance to actually do any scrapping. I have, however, had a few chances to get in there and actually do some straightening up at least. Now it is time for me to get myself back into the scrapping business! I enjoy it so much and I love the relaxing feeling I get when I am creating new pages!
These two projects that I have going on, an album for our church over the building of our Family Life Center. I plan to have a lot of fun with this one, keeping the theme of this album in such a way as to honor God. I thank God for the opportunity to scrapbook and use my ideas and put them on paper and to have them turn out to look the way I had hoped. To have my pages be viewed by others and complimented is an honor that I would not have if it were not for God. I give Him all the glory, honor, and praise.
I also praise God for the opportunity to create an album for a young family who recently had to live through one of the worst possible experiences imaginable, the loss of a child. During her pregnancy this mother learned that her baby had a birth defect. He had hydrocephalus and a significant portion of his brain was either not developed or under developed.  He was not going to survive long after birth, IF he was born alive! This family was so heartbroken but rather than do what most people do in a time like that, which is they turn away from God and blame Him for their circumstances, this family turned TOWARD God. They are already a Christian family, but this brought them even closer to God.
As soon as I found out about it, I believe God laid it upon my heart to create a memorial album of Baby Thomas for this family. You see, they were not total strangers.
I had the priviledge of meeting Holly Milner when I was employed at Jasper High School as the school nurse. I found Holly and her sister Amber to be such special young ladies, it amazed me. Even then, as young teenage girls, they had such a strong faith in God, it was truly a blessing to see. They were a blessing to be around. Naturally, as soon as I found out this involved Holly, one of "my kids from the school", I knew I wanted to do something for her and her family, but I was asking myself what.
It wasn't long before the thought came to me that I wanted to create an album for them. When she shared ultrasound pictures of what appeared to be a perfect baby lying in her womb in the perfect position for a full body shot, I knew. I knew then that to create an album to honor Thomas, and preserve these precious memories for this family, was something that God wanted me to do. And when God asks you to do something, you don't just say, "um.....gee God, I don't know if I am going to have the time or if I want to give away any of my stuff on a project like this, especially when I am trying to MAKE money in my scrapbooking business." But God doesn't take no for an answer, so I decided it would be best if I just listened to Him and did the project. At the same time, I felt honored to be the person who was chosen to do this. To be the person that God chooses for such a special and very important task, words cannot express my feelings. I was humbled to say the least.
I followed Holly's blog all the way up to and through Thomas' birth, very short life, and death. I prayed that someone had taken pictures at his funeral service, which Holly and her husband Aaron decided to have more of a celebration instead. I think they had a fantastic idea and from what I have seen of the photos and heard from others who were there, it was a very touching service and a wonderful celebration of Thomas' short life, and the affect his short life had on so many people.
Through her blog, Holly was able to share God with many people without the reader realizing it! I think sometimes that is what is needed to turn someone around from a life without God, to a life WITH God. I believe Holly, and her words, stories and photos on her blog, most likely turned more people toward God than she could ever imagine. It is for that reason that I feel she is an inspiration to me. That is also why I feel so honored to be the one who gets to preserve these beautiful, and the sad, memories for her.
Now I just have to get my behind in there and get busy!! There is still much more to this story which I will share with you at a later date, perhaps tomorrow?! But for now, I have to get busy!!

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Life in general

I am getting so aggravated at the computer way of doing things. I get something written all up, sounding very nice, and then it happens. I hit the wrong button or the wrong combination of buttons and I end up loosing all that I have just written!! VERY aggravating.
I have a couple of things I want to talk about today. First is always in most every females mind, and quite a few males as well, weight loss. I have tried diet after diet after diet, and what they say is true. You loose some weight, feel good about yourself and your accomplishment, and then slowly but surely, you gain it all back, plus a few pounds! Talk about aggravation!!!
Well my latest was something that I have seen work very well for folks. I have a couple of people in my church using this diet and doing well on it! It is the HCG diet. You have these HCG drops that you use 3 times daily and you are limited to a 500 calorie diet. I gave it a good try for 4 weeks. I was going to go straight through to 6 weeks, then take a three week break and go for another 6 weeks. You see, I want to loose a total of about 70-80 pounds. I don't want to be so thin people start to wonder about me, but I would like to be able to walk into ANY store and be able to buy myself a t-shirt or pair of jeans in a much smaller size than I presently do. And as of right now, I can't seem to find clothes at most places. I either have to special order them, or go to Goodwill and pray they have something there for me. It just seems so unfair!!
Well, during my 3.5 weeks on the HCG diet, I was loosing weight! I lost about 15*20 pounds! I was so excited! But then we had a special meal at church, and I ate. Then we had an excellent meal at home, prepared by my hubby since I can't stand long enough to actually cook! And I ate! Well, as part of the HCG diet, it tells you that if you have a weight gain, on that day you drink tons of water and all you get to eat is a large steak for supper! Sounds pretty good huh? Well, the first time wasn't too bad. I ate a large rib eye, and finished off someone elses, then I ate a couple pieces of smaller steaks my husband had grilled. BUT, that is all I ate was steak! The next morning when I got up, went to the bathroom and weighed. Sure enough, I had lost back to where I was before the gain, plus an extra 2 pounds!!! I was thinking how awesome this was!!! Well, about a week later, I had another gain, a small one, but still a gain. So, I talked to my husband, who was stopping by the store on his way home from work and told him that I needed to have a steak night since I had gained again. But I didn't. And OFF that wagon I fell, fell pretty hard too. I really tried this diet and it was going well, but only for a couple of weeks. I still have some HCG left so I could restart the diet, but I don't want to.
Now, don't get me wrong, I want to loose weight, but I can't do it in a way that I am not going to be able to stick with for the rest of my life!! I enjoy the taste of various foods, and I love to try new foods, maybe a recipe that someone has tried for the first time, or whatever. I ENJOY FOOD!!! If I can't do a diet that will let me enjoy "normal" foods at times, I won't be able to stick to it.
So, basically, what my husband and I have decided is that we are going to cut back on our proportions, stick to the diet of what he is allowed to have, for the most part, due to his diabetes. I say for the most part because he is not allowed some fruits and veggies that I love, so I will enjoy them at times, just not too often. And, we have decided to get a treadmill, since we know that realistically, neither of us is going to start or continue a walking program outside of home. We found a perfect treadmill at Academy with a weight capacity of 350#, all the others were 250, which we know Gerald cannot get on!
My intention is that when we get this treadmill, and it may be a while because we have to save up for it, all $400! But, I am going to probably have to sacrifice one of my storage solutions I have in the living room so that we can put the treadmill in the living room. My theory is that if we can get on it and get going while watching a television program, before we know it we will have walked for an hour or so! If we do this and watch our snacking and eat more healthy foods than junk, we should do okay! I know the weight is not just going to fall off, but it didn't just fall on either, so it is going to take a while.
My hope is that by working on a treadmill, I will not only loose weight, but help my back in the process, at least that's what my prayer is.
Another of my focus' right now, is in completing an album for a young couple who just lost their tiny son born with anencephaly. I want to present them with an album within the next month, beginning with some pregnancy pictures and incorporating her blog posts into the album. It is my prayer that this will be an album that they can go to frequently and be reminded of all the good things that have happened because of that little boys very short life. He has touched so many lives, especially of people who have never met the family, or anyone close to the family, but they feel like family. These are Facebook family, blogger families, and other general prayer warriors. People we will never be able to thank properly for all they have done, even if it was simply saying a small prayer at some point specifically for any member of this family. I am hopeful that I will get some help from some of my Stampin' Up! sisters to complete this album and that the photographers present at baby Thomas' birth will be willing to share their photos with me so that I may create the best album possible, by letting God lead me all the way to completion of this very special album. So please pray for me, and if you know the Bush family and want to help in some way, there are several ways to help. There is going to be an auction beginning tomorrow, Thursday, on Facebook, or you can send a donation to the hospital. Just be sure if you choose that to make sure it goes to the renovation of the NICU at Christus St. Elizabeth Hospital and is in the name of Thomas James Paul Bush.
I have another way that you can help which I have already mentioned. If you are a scrapbooker, or cardmaker, you know what all goes into making an album, especially one that needs to be as special as this one. If you wish to help with this, I am creating a 12x12 album of baby Thomas and his family, beginning with pregnancy pictures of Holly and continuing through the birth of Thomas and perhaps including some funeral photos.
Ways you can help include: create a layout, preferably two page, but not required!
Create page elements than can be put on a 12x12 album page.
If you do everything in 6x6, that's fine too. If you can make them in such a way that they will fit together as a 12x12 page! I will probably be seeking suggestions of moments to be sure to include, or there is always the monetary donation. If you decide to make a monetary donation, please specify if this donation is to go to the hospital renovation fund in Thomas' name, or how you want it used.
Let's all pull together for this young family who mostly need our prayers now. Just please keep lifting them up in your prayers, as well as those who are staying by their side and helping them in that way. Don't forget prayers for the grandparents of this precious angel. As a grandparent, I can tell you, I have witnessed what the power of prayer can do. Don't be afraid to us it. Just include anyone who is assisting in the care of baby Thomas' family in your daily prayers.
With all of that said, I will be posting pics of some of my layouts at some time today, I hope!!! When you have to deal with the kind of back pain I have had for the past week almost, and I haven't been able to do most of the things I have wanted to do, but I plan on trying!
If you are still reading, bless your heart!! I know I get long winded at times, but it is usually about things I feel strongly about!
Have a great day and I hope to post at least a few layouts so you all don't think I am just claiming to be a scrapper!! LOL
God bless you each and every one.
Always remember: "I can do all things through Christ who gives me strength" Phil 4:13

Tuesday, May 3, 2011


I know SU is full of caring demo's, prove it to me. I challenge you to help me with this project!! I never knew an SU demo that could resist a challenge!! If you need more info, you can look on my other entries, or message me and I will be glad to give you further info. PLEASE HELP!!
Come on ladies! I know there are more of you out there that care about other people and want to help but dont know where to start. Just ask. The only dumb question is the one not asked. Please, all my SU sisters, lets do this. We basically have about two weeks, we can do this!!! Step up and remember +1.
Help me help make this families memories of their precious son, special by putting them in a wonderful album. I am making a 12x12 album, but if you prefer to do 6x6, you can basically do a 12x12 page, just in 6x6 pieces, kind of like a puzzle! PLEASE HELP!!!