Thursday, September 29, 2005

One more thought about that...

one more fall post and I promise I'll move on...
Dar on 2peas posted a blog challenge...post your favorite things about fall...
I've been trying to do these challenges but never seem to have the time to get to them before the next one comes up... So what is it that I love so much about fall? My last several posts have been about this season so what else can I possibly add?
I guess what I haven't yet thought about is what makes it different than the other seasons.
I know that I am a warm weather person. I really love the beach and all things tropical. I love being warm and laying in the sun, Im kind of a lizard like that. I hate to be cold and wet.
So why then is not summer my favorite season?

I think its because everything about fall is cozy, homey and all about family. Its not cold and snowy and frozen yet, not that it gets frozen in Seattle, but it does rain and it goes get cold. I hate being cold! Fall in the northwest is beautiful. The days are still warm, the air is crisp and clean, and the nights are cool so you sleep soooooo goood! It lasts though Sept and October and sometimes into early November.
Its a time to clean up the yard because the summer flowers are all turning brown and dying and for planning where to put the bulbs in the ground for next spring.

I no longer have to worry if the cellulete is showing on the backs of my thighs when I wear shorts. Its a time to start building up the fat layer to get you through the winter :-)

Its about snuggling up with a good book thats been sitting on my nightstand all summer long because I've been too busy outside to actually sit and read anything.
Its about watching football on the weekend even though I haven't been a football fan for years. Every year I swear Im going to start watching it again.

I love to bake and make soup but during warm weather, its the furthest thing on my mind. Who wants to heat up the house! Summer is all about burgers on the grill and salads...nothing cozy here! (good too, but not in the same way)

Autumn colors are my favoite too. Summers all blues and greens...beach colors. Autumns are warm and cuddly.
So, I guess its the food, its about being with family, its about the cool nights and warm days, it the happiness of being at home and safe and taken care of.

Tuesday, September 27, 2005

Autumn Butter

the fall frenzy continues, not sure why my mind is so stuck on autumn these days...
today I ran across this awesome sounding recipe for something called Autumn Butter. Ive never even heard of Autumn butter before but it sounds really yummy.
I think it would taste great on just about anything that goes with brown sugar and cinnamon. We love cooked winter squash for dinner. This would be great on squash, or on a bagel, or even on cornbread!

Easy Autumn ButterIngredients:
1/4 cup packed brown sugar
1 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
1/4 cup whipping cream
1 cup softened butter

Beat the brown sugar, pumpkin-pie spice whipping into the softened butter. Keep refrigerated.

At the same time I found this apple butter recipe. Imagine how good this would make your house smell cooking in the crockpot on a dreary afternoon~
Crockpot Apple ButterIngredients:
8 cups applesauce
4 cups sugar
4 teaspoons cinnamon
2 teaspoons allspice
2 teaspoons nutmeg
2 teaspoons cloves
Stir all ingredients together well in a large bowl. Transfer to a crockpot and cook, UNCOVERED, on high for six to seven hours. It isn't necessary to stir it. Cool and place into containers. Keep refrigerated or may be frozen.

Saturday, September 24, 2005

Fall Frenzy!

Im on a cleaning, organizing and decorating kick lately. Im not sure why it hit me, but Im glad it did and Im going to get as much done as possible before it wears off :-)
I'm anxious to decorate for fall this year but before I can decorate, I have to clean. Nothing looks worse than decorations in a dirty or cluttered room. So Im cleaning....
Today I got the kitchen junk cabinet cleaned and organized...I had so many out of date medicines in there that just needed to be tossed out. I put my label maker to work on these rubbermaid containers...Pretty huh?

So things are looking pretty spiffy and today I happily started to decorate for fall. Some of my fall stuff looked kind of yucky so Paul and I went shopping and got this new wreath and door hanger from Target...
and this pretty doormat from Pier 1.

We also got some new fall candles from Target and Pier 1 and a pretty silk flower decoration for the entry hall.

I love love love fall. Its so homey and comfy. It makes me want to cook and snuggle up with a good book.

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one more note for today ~ I changed the song on my blog to MercyMe I can only Imagine. This is the song we played at Justins funeral last Sunday. It makes me happy, yet sad.
Not sure how that can be, but its true.

Wednesday, September 21, 2005

We're home

It's over. We spent four precious & painful days with Justin. We held his hand while he passed away. I am so very sad, yet oddly feel calm and at peace. Justin was in such pain these past several weeks and I prayed at every movement of his chest that it would be his last breath.
I prayed for him to let go. I told him it was okay to go, don't be afraid. He'd fought as long and as hard as any human could have.
We received two blessings with all the sadness of Justins passing.

1)Paul reunited with 3 of his 4 brothers. They have vowed to keep their new found relationship going. Their presence at the funeral was such a blessing to Paul and myself... I took this photo of them outside the funeral home the day after we buried Justin. They have formed a much stronger relationship through this than they have ever had before. I know that Paul now knows that he has brothers that love and care about him.

2) my own Son Nick reunited with the family and was there to say goodbye to his stepbrother.. My heart almost burst in hugging him at the airport for the first time in close to two years. We will move slowly to rebuild our relationship. I will not risk it again.


Now that we are home we feel so calm. The waiting and worry is passed. There is obviously a deep sadness but along with that is a feeling of comfort that Justin is at peace and we are surrounded with people that love us.

Wednesday, September 07, 2005

friends

I am always blown away by the blessing of good friends. It humbles me, it makes me feel loved, it makes me feel unworthy, it makes me feel so special, it always takes me by surprise.

I have two friends that week after week have not just been there for me, but have taken it to unknown notches during this difficult time.
Every time I want to crawl inside myself and just hide, they pull me back out, dust me off, give me a big hug and tell me its going to be okay. We laugh, we cry, we hold each other up. They've shown me what real friendship is. I had never experienced such kindness in my life. I've never known such devoted friendship.
Barb and Marilyn. These are two women that I work with. They know that on Sat Paul and I are flying to No. Carolina to see Justin, our son who is dying of cancer. I think they must feel as helpless as I do, wanting to do something to help.
Today when I came back from lunch, this huge bag of stuff was on my chair. They had gone to the store and bought stuff for our flight, apparently everything they could lay their hands on. Candy, snacks, gum, magazines, games, water, even a phone card for cryin' out loud!
They continue to amaze me day after day with their thoughfulness. It's not the stuff, its the thought behind it. I can never repay the kindness these two women have shown me. They are always there for me and I am so blessed to have them in my life.
I saw a card that said Friends are those rare people who ask how we are and then wait to hear the answer. These are the kind of friends they are.
Friends are like quilts... lives pieced together, stitched with smiles, colored with memories and bound with love. My friends. I love you guys

Sunday, September 04, 2005

Scrapping the day away

Today Im scrapping!
It feels sooooooo good. :)
Heres one I did of Ethan and one I did of myself





















Saturday, September 03, 2005

does it get easier?

Not for a long time I know, but I hope someday it will be easier.
I'm really struggling with what I should be doing with myself. I feel like I should be doing something, yet there is nothing I can do. Last week the drs took away our last thread of hope when they said it was no use to continue Chemo on Justin. Although we knew the Cancer had won, we at least thought we could delay the inevitable a few months with treatment. Those hopes were dashed and it was a hard reality to accept.
Justin is my stepson, but I don't think any different of him than I do of my two children. Paul and I married when Justin was 4 years old. Not many people have memories at a younger age than 4 so Justin does not remember a time when I wasn't his step mom. Its all he's ever known.
Last night I tried to scrap. I really would like to get my feelings down right now, but all mojo has left. Scrapping is my therapy, my release of emotion. Good or bad, Im scrapping my feelings.


**********

On another note Im so proud of my scraper friends for how they open their hearts to the Katrina victims. The gals in the Pub are collecting money for one of the victims.
Jill at Down Memory Lane is selling packets of scrap supplies and donating 60% to the victims-so cool. Check it out if you can help http://www.downmemorylaneco.com
She's put together some great packets.

Thursday, September 01, 2005

I'm numb


I've hesitated to post this post. By posting it, I know it would become real.

On Tuesday of this week the Drs discontinued Justins treatments and set him up with hospice. They said the damage to his immune system by continuing Chemo would probably do more harm than any good that the Chemo would do. We had planned to go to NC on Oct 3rd but Natalie said we needed to come sooner than that.

We now leave on Sat 9/10 to spend a week with him. One week. Seven Days. Two of those days will be spent traveling. That only leaves Five days to tell him everything I want to tell him. At this point Im having a really hard time even trying to think of what I want to tell him much less to open my mouth, face to face and tell him how much I love him, how proud I am of the man he grew up to be what a wonderful father he became.
I am numb. I really want to be strong and Im trying my best but I suck at it.
How Paul and I get up and go to work every morning, I don't know. It's so hard to continue a normal life although I know those daily routines are what gets me through each day. Otherwise I think I would prefer to just curl up in a little ball and stay there.
Luckily I work with some amazing people who seem to know when to grab me and take me away from my desk and go outside for a walk. By the time I get home Im a zombie. Paul looks as bad as I do.
I don't want to break down in front of him so I need find some strength.
Please do whatever you believe in. Prayer, meditation, good thoughts....