The End Of June Already?!
I cannot believe so much time has past between posts!
I guess having a void of time because of health concerns really is like a time machine. It's like going to sleep and waking up to your alarm clock ringing when you could swear that you just laid down a second before.
What has been happening? Really just a constant barrage of viruses (immunocompromised) and a constant hemiplegic migraine. I did get some blood work done that showed nothing. I also got an MRI done that shows demylating (spelling is incorrect, I am sure) and white matter. Both are issues for memory loss and MS type symptoms among other things. My doctor had a family emergency so I will not be able to get in to see him to figure out next steps for a bit.
In the meantime, I have been using my time on survival mode. That means that I am taking care of things around the house, the garden, etc. However, that also means that I am not doing much else. Basically, all I have been doing is routine. I really enjoy being a homemaker, but would like to also ride my bike, go on nature hikes, go on nature drives, etc. Nope. Can barely function to get the stuff done that needs doing. I'm okay with it so don't feel pity. I have been through this so many times. Sometimes you just want to sleep and hope it all goes away. But I am past that now because I know it is temporary. I've been through this many times in the decades of being sick.
Yep, this means that I am not looking glamorous. My house is nice and clean though. My laundry is done and always put away. The dishes are always done. The carpet is vacuumed and the floors are cleaned. The flower gardens and vegetable gardens are weeded once a week. The pets are cared for. My children and husband know I care and we have an opportunity to have meals together and other time together at home.
It's all about attitude. I am so grateful. I am grateful for a home to take care of. I am grateful for a husband that loves me not matter what. I am grateful for two adult boys that are working hard on their futures. I am grateful for the company and loyalty of my cats. I am grateful for a washer and dryer to do laundry in. I am grateful for a dishwasher to clean dishes in. I am grateful for running water and electricity. I am grateful that I have the ability to communicate with my family. I am grateful for a Savior who died for me. I am grateful for the Gospel of Jesus Christ that uplifts me. I am grateful for the rain we got yesterday. So many many many things to be grateful for.
I guess this post will be short and sweet and the main message will be that attitude is everything. You can get through any trial with a good attitude and a sense of humor. Make the best of bad situations and when they get better you will know that you learned so many lessons during those situations that you are grateful for them.
Thanks for checking in and reading.
Can't Believe It's May!
I just cannot believe it is May! Time is flying and is really kinda weird right now. It has actually been weird since the pandemic. I know you likely agree with me about that.
Flowers have been blooming and some have been planted. Hopefully they live through the freeze tonight. We have had unseasonably cool weather. That isn't a bad thing because it means that the water we have been getting won't just evaporate.
Speaking of water, the reservoirs have been especially low and one, Lake Meade, has been really low. I knew there were bodies in it. Yep. I was right. They have found multiple bodies since the receding water has dipped below what anyone expected...especially those who dumped bodies there. We live in weird times.
What are some of the ways you cope with the negativity that seems to be everywhere right now? Some of my coping skills are;
spending time in nature
reading a book
listening to music
studying a skill
limiting time on social media
yoga and meditation
studying my scriptures
spending time with family
Those are just a few of my coping skills. I am finding that spending less and less time on social media is much more healthy, makes me feel much healthier. What I see on social media is a barrage of the same negative comments and messages with not much else. I need social media to promote my businesses so I do still go on the platforms. However, I am limiting my time on those platforms so that I don't waste my time and get sucked into negative though processes.
I still work on my Poshmark, Mercari, Ebay business. However, I have not been in the best of health so I have stepped away somewhat and have just been adding a few things here and there, relisting, and have been in the process of taking inventory.
Lately, I have been working on my Etsy, RedBubble, Zazzle business to create more of a passive income stream, like that of my Udemy course. In order to do that I have been cranking out designs, which takes away from some of the time I have to work on my reselling business. However, once I have a solid few hundred designs, I can push my reselling business again and will only need to create one or two designs a week in order to keep the interest coming to my design business.
I know I seem like I am all over the place, but the point of these businesses is to have various income streams, which leads me to my PowerPoint course that I am solidifying and will be adding to Udemy and other platforms shortly. This will be another passive income stream.
Of course, my husband is the main breadwinner in my family. I have been a homemaker and stay-at-home mother. Now my children are grown and I can add to our income and improve my skills at the same time. This is important at a time when prices on everything are rising at an alarming rate. We need my income to pay for life at this point. Also at this point, who knows if we will ever get to retire. That is a subject for another time but just has to do with the state of Social Security benefits as well as the cost of everything.
Here are some of my latest designs. These are some that are in grid format and work for all kinds of products. You can click on any of the images to lead you to the image or product pages, if you are interested.
Here are a few of my recent listings with my reselling business. Again, the link is part of the photo, so if you are interested, feel free to click on the photo and it will take you to the item.
Women’s Lane Bryant Relaxed Fit Short Sleeve Knit Sweater, Size 16, Brown, White $16
Women’s Sanctuary Sleeveless Button Front Crepe Blouse, White, Red, Size Medium $29
Women's Charming Charlie Stripe Color Block Dress, Black, White, Red,Size Medium $12
Well, I need to get busy cleaning the floors and straightening the house. We have our cabinet person coming out to do final measurements tonight for our kitchen cabinets. It's going to be nice to get that part of the house finished so that we have nearly everything remodeled on the inside.
Hope your May is going great!
Furry Family Members
I have now made more changes to this blog style. I updated my header (do you like it?), took off the outdated and no longer necessary media kit, and changed the colors and some fonts. I am attempting to make this more me and less what I think people want to see. Being authentic is important to me. I guess I am trying to figure myself out a bit at the same time.
Some seasons of life seem really tough. No one ever tells you that having adult children is tough. It is. It can be. Having senior citizen furry family members is also really tough. We have had quite a number of furry family members.
At first, I let my kids have a goldfish. The first one died so soon after we got it that I thought I killed it. Yes, I cried. We had the burial at sea (toilet flush, so dignified). My husband comforted me by telling me it was just a feeder fish. A feeder fish? I had no idea what that even was.
Many fish and frogs later, we got a couple of cats. I had recently had a hysterectomy and was not able to have the number of kids I thought I wanted. I really needed something to take care of. I begged my husband. I kept him up all night begging him. He didn't know what to do with this childish wife he had married.
I took my children and we looked at a couple of cats that were on this website for kittens and cats. They were (still are) brother and sister. They came from a special situation but I couldn't just leave them. I took them home to start giving them love. By that time, they were already 6 months old so they were not tiny. We had to slowly introduce them to our home. First (of course, not knowing how badly cats typically hated baths) they had to have a bath. The sister cried and clawed a bit but wasn't so bad. The brother on the other hand clawed his way up my front, down my back, ran across the master bedroom and jumped up on the window, grabbing the temporary blinds. Note: This was a new house we had build and had moved into only three months prior. Anyway, his name instantly became Spike. The sister's name was changed from what the temp home was calling her to Elle.
Little did I know that I was going to get super sick from Late-Stage Lyme Disease and these two fluffy companions would become my closest friends. They were by my side all of the time and mostly because I was in bed a lot of the time.
To my relief, we finished the phase of fish, frogs, and other water creatures. Closing the book on that particular chapter was such a relief. It was such a relief. Did I say it was a relief?!
Then came Winter of 2008. A cat that was obviously used to living in a home (instead of some of the wild ones we have around here) was sitting on our porch. The weather was awful and she needed some place to stay so I made a bed for her in the garage while we put the word out to try to find her owner. We had no luck finding her owner. Spring came and we found out she was pregnant. May 2008 she gave birth to a litter. I can't remember how many there were. Maybe 6 kittens. One of those kittens was huge and white and orange. We would later name him Orangey.
We thought after finding homes for those kittens that we would find a home for Kitty (the name we gave the mommy). Well, evidently, cats can be pregnant with multiple litters, one after another. Another litter came in June. This time the biggest cat was also orange and white, but had longer fur. There were around 4 kittens with that litter.
We found homes for most of the cats but the orange and white one from the first litter and the orange and white one from the second litter. Finally, we found a home for the longer hair one of those two brothers. His new owners called him Tiger and we called our orange and white cat Orangey. Tiger was over at our house with Orangey often. Our neighbor that took him didn't treat him well. So, he just wound up coming home to us and staying here. That was good for Orangey because he needed a friend.
Well, the weather started to get bad and another cat was sitting on our porch. She was older and so sweet. We tried to find the owner to no avail. So, she wound up becoming Tiger's best friend. They would lay on the porch snuggled together and were like husband and wife. One passed on and the other not long after. Those were some sad days.
We still have Orangey, Spike and Elle. Orangey is now 14 and is having a hard time using his back legs. I am having to help him get around while we try to get him into the doctor. I feel like his time is about to pass on. I have already been experiencing anticipatory grieving. Severe grieving. He has lost a ton of weight and his fur doesn't look healthy.
Spike and Elle are both 16 years old and don't go outside like Orangey does. They stay in the basement at night and Orangey typically goes out in the garage at night (he has a cat door).
I feel like the days of furry family members is nearing an end. It is really causing me grief. They have been here by my side when my family was off doing stuff and I was home sick. That has happened a lot...a lot! They have been here when my children were at school all day and my husband was at work all day. So, you can see why this might affect me so terribly.
After these babies pass on, we will not be getting any other pets. It hurts too much when they pass on. I don't think I can take anymore heartache from pets passing.
Well, I know this is a downer of a post, but I am going to leave this. In my life, furry family members have always been there for comfort and have always been loyal. They have been needed. I have loved them deeply. I hope to see them again one day very far into the future. However, we all know that their life span is significantly shorter than the typical human life span. Having these creatures as part of the family has given my children responsibilities and learning experiences they would not have otherwise had. They have been an integral part of my life, having chronic illness and being otherwise alone a lot. They will all be missed terribly. For now, this stage is the hardest but I cherish every moment with them.
What a gift!
I'm in a strange place. My baby turns 22 tomorrow but I am not old. My oldest turned 25 in February but that didn't make me feel old either.
Age is such a funny thing. I know that when I was their ages, I thought that my parents were old. Heck, I thought that anyone over 30 could die from old age at any moment. Now, I don't feel like I am any older than my kids' college friends, which must be mortifying to them.
I remember the birth of my children so clearly. I remember the movement of each of them in my belly, their womb. I recall their first baths, their first steps, all of those great firsts. What I wasn't prepared for are the sad firsts, seconds, thirds...
Mental health has been such a big issue for my children. Autism. Generalized Anxiety Disorder. OCD. These things halt us in our tracks. My children have been given big doses of these and we have spent so much money and time in our quest to help them to overcome the worst aspects of these disorders. We have tried to help them to in every way become independent.
My oldest has graduated from college with multiple degrees and my youngest is currently in college for multiple degrees.
My oldest has a great job and gets to work from home, which is good and bad. It is good because he gets the support he needs, gets to melt down as needed. Plus, he gets the career and the pay. However, he doesn't get the social interaction with his peers. He does go in to the office twice a week for a couple of hours for some of his work, however, there is not really interaction in that trip.
My youngest has to go to campus for some of his classes, which entails driving in traffic, riding a train, riding a bus, and then the same thing on the way home. He gets quite a lot of people interaction with this and he is the one who has the hardest time with people interaction. However, if it is plain social interaction that has nothing to do with school, he won't do it.
When children are little, you can plan playdates with their friends. I think that it may be frowned on as adults, lol. But, I wish that it were a thing sometimes.
It's one of those things. We wish we could fix our children's problems. We wish we could take away all of the negatives, all of the major struggles. However, when it comes down to it, that is how our children grow and learn. It's how we have made it to mid-life. We learned and had struggles. So, for my job as a mother, I feel like I should be here to help them through this hard time. However, it is not my job to take away these learning experiences. That will not help them at all. It's my job to be a shoulder to cry on, pat them on the back for a job well done, give advice when it is sought and generally give encouragement, love and acceptance along their journey.
It is the biggest blessing in my life to have two children. The gift God has given me. The responsibility God has given me. The blessings God has given me. Sure, I hope I am doing it right. I mean, there is no book that tells us how to parent each of our children. They are each so different from another. I even tell my children that I was never a parent before and that I get to practice on them and that I make mistakes. Both my husband and I are very humble about this responsibility. But, my husband and I are sure that the gifts of these children from God makes it a calling and so we take our responsibility very seriously.
You know what? We get these kids forever. They are ours forever. Isn't that amazing?! What a gift!
Spring Is In The Air
I am sitting here at my kitchen table to type this today. No, it is not ergonomically comfortable. However, the sun is shining and the sky is blue. We don't have a very large lot (wish we had a homestead) so the view really is mostly encompassed by the house of our neighbor behind us. We have a little grass and a 20' x 20' garden. We also have a tree in the front, along with my flower beds. The yard becomes my addiction during the spring, summer and fall months. By the way, I never know whether to capitalize those, so feel free to comment below to tell me if they should or should not have been capitalized seasons.
Being immunocompromised, I have been sick so often that there is not ever much time between when I could say that I feel well. I make the most of my time, however, because we have limited time here on earth. One of my recent hobbies, one that relaxes me, is creating print and cut designs that I see on Etsy HERE. I have no exact focus at the moment. I have only sold three designs to date but have only been doing it for a couple of months at most. I have been doing graphic design for much longer than that, however. I decide what to design depending on my emotions so I have quite a few that are created in support of Ukraine. Here are a few of my designs.
This design is a Zoom/Virtual meeting design background. People like to look like they live or work where they do not really live or work, so I will accommodate that need with some clean, sophisticated vibes. I love this one because, even as clean as it appears, at least there is an open book in the background. Here is the link to this design. HERE
Below is another design.
Obviously, these designs are watermarked. When you buy the designs, you get files in .svg, .jpg, .png, and .pdf formats. This design shown above is $5 and is located HERE.
If people aren't interested in printing on their own, or don't own a Cricut or Silhouette machine, I also put these products on a site called RedBubble. Here is my store HERE.
Here is a design on RedBubble that I really think is super cute. The great thing about this store is that the products are on demand, so the waste is minimized. Additionally, you can order the design on a hat, tee, sticker, or a multitude of other products.
The link to this sticker is HERE.
No, there really is no story behind this. I just thought it was kinda funny and open to interpretation. I thought it would be great for gamers for their laptops, but my gaming son thought it meant something equally as funny, like someone farted. Either way, I love this design.
The only issue I have with this is that not many designs get sold. I think that the market is flooded with foreign designers that make it so designs have to be sold super cheap. I do this for relaxation and to fill a need I have, to be creative. Therefore, my prices (if you can believe it, at $5 each) are higher than some. I value my work though, so my prices will remain the same.
Well, I need to go now so that I can put up some Easter decorations. Can you believe that it is nearly Easter?!
Til next time.
Hello everyone. I've decided to come back to this world of blogging because I need to work my feelings out and it seems like a great place to do it. I feel like sharing my struggles and my great moments might help others.
We have all been through some definitely stressful months with Covid-19. I'm grateful that the virus is waning and that we are now able to get back to a little bit of normalcy.
Just prior to the virus, I decided to wean down what I was doing so that I could hone my skills in certain areas. I was basically spread too thin with Instagram influencer work, Poshmark, Mercari, eBay, blogging, my online courses, and more.
I cut out Instagram influencing completely because it seemed like I was part of the machine that was showing the "perfect" life with "stuff" when life is not perfect and stuff isn't important. I don't want to be part of that.
That really gave me a feeling of ease. I think that was causing me a lot of stress. Of course, trying to be perfect does that to a person.
I increased my inventory with my online stores, which increased my sales substantially. This is something that makes me feel good. I sell mostly new and gently used clothing and accessories. I find these at the "bins", which is what people call the Goodwill Outlet. I also find these in online and in store sales and clearance, as well as thrift stores and other places. I really like the hunt and the treasures I find in the process. Of course, making money is the goal. However, many of the items that I sell would otherwise be put in a landfill. Yes, items with the tag still on and in new condition get put in a landfill.
In addition to the above, my health has been an issue. I am currently fighting with hemiplegic migraines that cause my face to sag on one side, lack of feeling on one whole side of my body, and double vision, among other things. I think this likely stems from damage to my nervous system from late-stage Lyme disease. However, I count my blessings and have learned to fight through all of it.
This is a brief post with a brief update to get me started back on blogging. I look forward to many future posts.
Homemade Freezer Spaghetti Sauce
Don't know what to do with your excess garden tomatoes? Here's my recipe for homemade freezer spaghetti sauce that you can enjoy for the full next year.
Plaid Checked Sleeves
Who loves a comfy top? I especially love a comfy, soft top with cute sleeves for Fall. Here's one that I love.
New Duvet & Sham
I have never had a duvet before so this new duvet from Crown Goose is something that really fully dressed my bed and makes such a difference in my bedroom. Here's more.
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