Monday, December 05, 2011

Diary of a Christmas Tree - Florida Style! :)

Ian had the most amazing opportunity last week and I want to share it with ya'all.  Ian was able to take a sand-sculpting class with a professional sand sculptor.  Jim Smith has won many awards and has sculpted for various Disney events and for lots of towns in Florida.  Jim started by showing Ian the basics of the trade.  Above is a pic of Ian's first "project" - an arch.  :)   I initially thought that this was just going to be a "play in the sand" class, but oh my, it was SO MUCH MORE!!!!

The business where Ian took the class is just opening up and is going to be offering sand sculpting classes as part of their artistic offerings.  The owner of the business requested a holiday-themed display in the huge "sandbox" in the front of the store.  After some basic design ideas, the hard work really began in earnest.
The guys had to  build the foundation for a Christmas tree.  When I saw this picture, I was a lilttle skeptical that it would ever amount to a "tree"...

The next day,  the barrels of sand grew into this:

Can you see it now?  You haven't seen anything yet!!!

But wait, there's more!!!

Don't you love the lights????

And don't forget the presents!

I "cherish" living in Florida on the beach and having such wonderful opportunities open up for Ian.  We can't wait to see what we can build on our own, now that we understand the "basics".  Anyone want to come wiggle their toes in the sand with us?  We don't have snow or hot chocolate but we have sand, waves and sweet tea!


Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Bad Blogger Mama....

First off, I'm sorry about neglecting my blog for the last little while...I mean it, I'm REALLY sorry!  You want to know what a small part of the reason is that I'm sorry?  Because I'm a mom.  Yup, that's why.  A homeschooling mom to boot.  As Paul Harvey used to say, here's the "rest of the story".

As you know, my mom's health and mental stability have been on a rapid decline.  Being real here, it has not been easy to be my mother's daughter.  Because we're a family, it's been hard on all of us...not just on me.  Ian has tried to be such a rock for his mama, but from time to time, the pain of dementia strikes a  little too close to his heart as well.  Since he is definitely his mama's son, he has an inherited tendency to hold painful things inside and let them build up and build up and so on, until, it all spills out in an unpredictable moment.   He had one of those unpredictable blowing off steam moments this past week.  Bless his heart.  He's hurting in his own way and isn't quite sure how to express himself and let his emotions not be held inside so much.  I suggested that he might want to start keeping a journal.  He could write random things, whatever he feels like talking about, on the pages of his book. I really think it might help.  Nice mom moment, BUT - the not-so-little smarty pants said, "Hey Mom, isn't that what your blog is supposed to be???????????"   (Yes, I'm sure there were that many question marks behind the question when he asked it!)  LOL      "Mom, when's the last time you up-dated your blog???????"  (There are those darn question marks again!)   "Mom, you should really send yourself to the principal's office...because you have been a very bad blogger."   Can you tell he wants to be an attorney?

Can you also tell that he's right?

So, I apologize - I need my little blog.  I enjoy blogging.  And I do LOVE my blogging buddies!!  Could any of you possible know that sometimes when I have a few minutes, I'll go blog-hopping and just browse what you're up to and you cheer me up?  I most often don't leave comments (please don't tell Ian - he'd probably want me to write, "I will leave comments on blogs" 100 times, by hand, and have it turned in by tomorrow).  LOL 

Anyway, I love just peeking in and checking on you.  Your blogs never fail to brighten my day and put a smile on my face.  (unless something sad has happened in your life.  In that case, I stop right there and whisper a prayer for you - honest!)  Thanks for being there:  for sharing your lives, your talents, your abilities, your spirits, your blessings and your trials with me.  AND, thank you for the great comments you leave for me. Sometimes, an awful lot of encouragement can be found in a simple sentence or two.

I will try to be a better blogger.  Both as a writer and as a commenter.

Especially if it means that I won't be a "do as I say, not as I do" parent!   :)

I "cherish" a reality check from time to time!


Thursday, October 06, 2011

TUSAL - September

I know I'm late with my TUSAL report this month...but I can honestly say that this September has been one of the hardest months of my life.  I'll post more about it in a later post, but suffice to say, dementia stinks...both for the patient and the patients' family...

I like looking at the jar when it comes to this time of year...I can see the pastels of spring topped with the oranges, greens and rusts of Autumn.

I'm looking forward to happier times with more stitching time to add more orts to my 2010 collection.

I "cherish" the tough times that make us strong.... my faith has had to grow in ways that I never imagined that it could...


Saturday, September 17, 2011

Rockin' the Happy Dance!

This is such a special finish for me.  The Battle Hymn of the Republic was my Dad's favorite hymn. He wanted it played at his funeral and to this day, hearing it can bring a tear to my eye because I remember my Daddy's humming this tune so often during my growing-up years...  So, Daddy - this one's for you....

Battle Hymn of the Republic by Little House Designs...stitched on recommended fabric and using recommended floss.

I "cherish" memories of my Dad...


Monday, July 11, 2011

TUSAL - July

Finally, a post from me!  Whew - busy, busy, summer!!  :)
There's been a just a tiny bit of stitching happening - here's my TUSAL...not much, but it's growing ort by ort.

I *cherish* the moments I get to fill my jar.


Saturday, June 04, 2011

TUSAL - June

It's growing!  Now, if I just had finishes to go along with the orts!  LOL,  I'm working on it!!  :)


Monday, March 28, 2011

Being a Tourist in Your Own State

Isn't it sad that sometimes we don't even know what treasures our own states hold until we have visitors?  We are always on the look-out for the "off-the-beaten path" places to visit when we have company.  Living in Florida, it can get pretty old to do the Disney, Universal, Sea-World,  "lather, rinse, repeat" cycle, so it's fun to find some "new to us" things to do.

What follows are some pics of one of the fun places we found to visit during our "special someone's" visit.  (There will be more to come sprinkled in with future stitching and what-not posts, as well.)  I wasn't born or raised here, but we learn more and more that we  live in an amazing state.  I *heart* Florida!!!  :)     (PS - the weather is pretty darn awesome most of the year, too!!)  :)

One of our first stops was  Wonderworks was a fantasic place in Orlando that was REALLY lots of fun!!  I highly recommend it as a place to go as a "break" from the "go, go, go" of Disney.  This is one of those places where adults can have just as much fun as the kids.

  The premise of this place is that it was picked up (I think by a "supposed" wild weather event and then placed "upside down".  In other words, the basement is the upper floor and the third floor is on the bottom floor.  (Yup, I had to ask directions "more" than once!  LOL   There were lots of exhibits here - you learned about cold water (hypothermia  killed most of the Titanic victims);  you place your hand in a bucket of water that is the same temperature of the water the Titanic sank in, and a clock counts down how long you keep your hand immersed.  I lost by ONE second!!!!!  (My snarky 15-yr old was determined not to let me beat him!)  You can also experience what it feels like to be in a hurricane, an earthquake, throw pitches to some of baseball's greatest, play with monster bubbles, lay on a bed of nails (you have a lot of control over this exhibit), "land" a space shuttle, go on a 4-d roller coaster, a really cool rope climbing adventure (I had to sit that one out due to my knee, but the guys said it was really fun!), do a virtual reality game, see yourself as an astonaut and with a "floating head" AND play laser tag on one of the world's largest laser tag courses!  (BTW - please note....out of the eight people in our group, I kicked MAJOR "sit-upon" at laser tag!!!!!  Got the highest score, I did!!!)  :)

        Ian's "floating" head

"Ace" looking like a bug-head playing one of the Virtual Reality Games

As a disclaimer, I don't work for nor do I know anyone who works for Wonderworks.  (If I would have, I would've know how to score discount tickets - LOL).   They do offer AAA and AARP discounts.

These pics bring back silly, happy moments.  Thanks for letting me share.

Cherish your memories,


Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Same Airport, Different Emotions....

Don't worry, there are LOTS of Florida tourism pictures that are heading this way in the next few days, but first, let's get one of my musings out of the way, shall we?

Have you ever noticed how ONE airport can have TWO entirely different emotions?  When our "special someone" was winging his way across the country for a visit with us a couple of weeks ago, I couldn't get to the airport fast enough.  It only takes us about an hour to get to the airport from our home, but I swear, getting to the airport to "pick up" seemed to take MUCH longer.  When we got there, I checked the arrival board about every two seconds, waiting for that "at gate" sign to show itself.  The joy and anticipation of hugs was over-whelming.  Tears shed were the 'happy" kind.

Fast forward through two absolutely wonderful weeks (minus one or two tourism "turkey's".  Hey, every state has 'em!)  Same route to the airport...but this time, the trip seemed to take only minutes.  I was trying so hard to cling to every last second.  This time I was staring at the departure board and dreading every minute that ticked by.

Those last final hugs were gut-wrenching and this time the tears were definitely not the joyful kind.  If you happened to be at the Orlando airport on Saturday, I was the lady who was holding on probably a little too tightly and soaking in tears. I was, however, appropraitely attired in black; that wasn't intentional on my part at all.  In fact, it kind of gave me a giggle when I got home and realized how I was dressed for "mourning")  I'm sorry if I happened to be your first impression of Florida - generally speaking, we're mostly a happy bunch!

The tears have stopped and looking at the pictures and remembering the fun memories has begun.  Lots of pics will be posted here in the coming days and weeks.  As my dad  always used to say, here's one to whet your whistle....(what's Florida without a plastic pink flamingo?) 

Cherish every moment,

Friday, February 04, 2011

TUSAL - February

Here are my orts for the month.  It may look like a messy nest, but I like watching the different layers "grow".  The mix of colors is random, funky and fun.  I can't draw a straight line with a ruler nor a circle with a compass, so for me, this is about as artistic as I get.  Sad,  huh?     LOL

You can tell I've been on a Valentine kick lately, look at all those shades of pink!  :)

Thanks so much for visiting with me....I really appreciate your time and each of your comments.  I "heart" ya'all!!!