Thursday, July 24, 2014

Five Years in Heaven

I don't intend to make anyone sad or cry with this post but just a reminder to cherish each moment with your loved ones.
 
I can't believe it has been five years since I held Amber's hand and kissed her sweet cheeks.  I don't know how I walked out of the hospital on that Friday night five years ago.  She was to be moved out of ICU after one night to a regular room that Friday afternoon.  We were at the hospital a little over 24 hours. She and I had just laughed and played a game a few hours before.  Never in a million years would I have thought we would be burying Amber a few days later.  She was ready to go Home and had just told me a few months before.  Amber did go Home.  Home to Heaven.  She knew the rare form of muscular dystrophy that had destroyed her body but never her mind had become too much for her to handle.  I cried when she told me this.  Her body was just tired.   She always had a smile on her face for others but I knew at times she was sad about how life "could have been".  She never asked "why me?" 
 
That Friday night I never could have left the hospital without God walking along beside me and my family.  It's all kind of a blur because I couldn't believe that I had just lost a child of my own.  I am thankful that I held her in my arms surrounded by Jennifer and my husband as she left this earth.  It's still unreal to me at times that Amber is no longer here.  Her room is just the same as it was before we rushed her to the hospital ... except for the curio that we gave to Maggie Kate for her nursery.  It's what Amber would have wanted.  The book she was reading is still bookmarked and untouched as she left it. Jennifer and I made her bed after the funeral (after we smelled her sweet scent) crying our eyes out.  The bed has not been slept in since.  I walk by her bedroom a hundred times a day wishing she was there just to give me a hug. She always asked for hugs :)  I'm often asked (as any mother is) how many children I have.  I say two ... a daughter in Heaven and a daughter here on earth.  People often look shocked after they ask but I say it's ok ...I love to talk about both my daughters. 
 
I once thought I could never survive the passing of a child but I get up each morning and put one foot in front of the other and go about my day.  A piece of my heart went to Heaven that Friday night five years ago but I do know God is with me and Amber is in Heaven walking again.  I often wonder how tall she is now that she no longer needs a wheelchair?   I do know she is waiting one day to be reunited with us all and oh what a day that will be!!
 
God Bless!
Hugs,
Donna

Friday, July 11, 2014

Toes in the Sand ...

Bet you know who these little feet and toes belong to :)
 
and yes they have been in the sand.  We have been to the beach! It was a couple of weeks ago when we were there.  The weather was gorgeous.
 
I hope you are ready for picture cuteness!!!
 
Maggie Kate is always this happy!!  People talk about what a happy baby she is.
She loved the ocean wind blowing her hair :)  (Her hair is so blonde it doesn't show up well.  It has really grown since this pic.)  This swim suit was one of several she wore.  Look at all the ruffles :)
 
She's making "faces" at her Poppy (my husband).  She adores him and of course he adores her.  Maggie Kate has Poppy wrapped tight around her little finger.  In other words whatever she wants she gets :).  That's what grandparents are for isn't it? lol
 
Walking on the white sugary sand to the clear blue ocean with her mommy and daddy.  I adored the little pink beach cover up with the printed swim panties.  And of course her hat to keep her protected from the sun.  Her mommy thought of everything.  How times have changed since we took our girls to the beach when they were little.  All the cute things they have for babies these days.  Makes me feel really old!
 
She had a fun time playing in the sand and the swimming pool. I took several hundred pics on this trip.  After all it was her first beach trip!
 
We had a wonderful time with Maggie Kate.
 
I hope to get back to regular blogging.  This was the fifth attempt to write this post.  There's not enough time in my days anymore!  I have been sewing and making outfits for Maggie Kate.  I've also been trying to keep my flowers in my garden alive with the hot dry days we've had here.
 
Thank you for visiting!
God Bless
 
Hugs,
Donna

Friday, May 30, 2014

Labor of Love

Maggie Kate's Easter dress was a labor of love!  I enjoyed making it so much for my precious little grandbaby ;)
I took classes for heirloom sewing last summer before Maggie Kate was born.  I already knew how to smock ... I learned when my girls were little.  I added lace insertion in the yoke and on the sleeves.  The sleeves have lace insertion with a pink ribbon that matched the dress woven through it.  Heirloom sewing is not difficult it's just very time consuming with all the little stitches.  The lace insertion, laces and fine cotton material for heirloom sewing can be rather pricey.  I will just make Maggie Kate heirloom dresses on special occasions.
 
For the Easter dress I combined heirloom sewing and smocking. The smocking was quick and easy to do.  I used white embroidery thread for the smocking.  It was a design included with the pattern.  I made a slip and ruffled bloomers to wear with it :)
 
The Easter bunny brought Maggie Kate all kinds of things.  One was this little pink chair.  She brought her pink chair from Mr. Bunny to our house.  We decided it would look cute with her in it swinging her foot :)  She had to have those bare feet swinging :)  She has the sweetest personality!
 My azaleas were in full bloom in the backyard so we sat her in front of them and I took over a hundred pics!  I loved the mischievous look on her face :)  Her mommy took just as many pics.  She loves having her pic made!
 
And of course I had to embroider a "My 1st Easter" bib.  She was about to go to sleep in her Poppy's arms in this pic. She loves her Poppy and oh how my husband loves her!
 
I have plenty of rompers and dresses in progress for summer time for this sweetie.  I had forgotten how much fun sewing for a little girl can be.  I wouldn't have it any other way :)
 
Thanks for visiting!
Hugs,
Donna

Tuesday, May 6, 2014

Spring has Sprung!

 I don't know where the time goes some days but I've definitely neglected my blog.   I have taken pics and intend to blog but things just happen.  Appointments, housework, trying to organize my sewing room, sewing and attempting to put together a few flowering baskets for my backyard has kept me busy.  Between back pain and thyroid issues I've been a mental mess too!  The most important thing I do is keep my precious little grandbaby :) a couple of days a week.  She brings me so much joy!  In fact I finished a couple of little outfits for her.  I haven't posted her Easter dress either.  I have been busy ... I promise :)
 
 Now to a few things blooming in my backyard ...
My purple clematis I planted in memory of Amber a couple of years ago.  Purple was her favorite color :)
 
I purchased these butterfly impatiens (notice the little pink center is a butterfly) and potted them for the back yard that is shady most of the day.  I had never seen this type impatien before.
 
All types of blooming flowers I bought to fill baskets.  We have a privacy wall on one side of our yard where I place hanging baskets for color.  I have matching baskets that I fill each year.
 
My snowball bush has huge white blooms this year.

It is so full it is drooping but gorgeous!  I wonder if they can be dried like hydrangeas?  I'll have to research that.
 
And more assorted plants for color in the yard.  I think the plant on the left is called Jacob's Ladder. I love this time of year but I hope all the pollen is gone!  It has been miserable this year.  Maybe it was the colder than normal winter for us.
 
To me there is something therapeutic about digging in the dirt and watching flowers grow and blossom.  I hope to plant my sunflowers and zinnias this evening if I don't get distracted! 
 
Thanks for visiting!
 
Hugs,
Donna

Thursday, April 17, 2014

A Little Easter Decor

Life has been so busy lately that I just haven't taken the time to post.  I finally grabbed my camera today and took a few pics of some Easter d├ęcor in the kitchen and dining room.
 
In the kitchen I brought out the brightly colored eggs and bunnies :)  I bought the glass canister at Cracker Barrel last year after Easter for a few dollars.  I like to shop at CB after holidays although I don't eat there much I do like to shop.  The white bunnies are from PB last year.  I had the faux cupcake from Pier One.  These are just things I had or bought on sale.  I really don't need any more Easter decorations ... I have decided! 

On the dining room table I used bright colors too.  I made the carrot table runner a few years ago.  I brought out Mr. Bunny, the little chick and eggs.  I did purchase the carrot basket this year.  I saw it and loved it. It's the little things that make me happy :)  I know Maggie Kate will love the brightly colored decorations this year.

 Colored eggs and carrots in the carrot basket.

Sweet little chick on the carrot runner.
 
My Butler's Pantry plates along with a Bordallo plate at each setting.  We won't eat Easter lunch at this table ... it's just for looks.  We will eat lunch at the kitchen table which I have yet to set.
 
We will have a delicious Easter meal and Maggie Kate will be here to celebrate with us ;)  I made her Easter dress this year and I will be sure to take pictures. 
 
Thanks for visiting!
Hugs,
Donna

Friday, March 14, 2014

1/2 Year Old!

Maggie Kate was 1/2 year old on Saturday the 8th.  My how time has flown since this little bundle of preciousness came into our lives :)
I kiss those little feet all the time!
 
I embroidered the 1/2 birthday bib and we had to buy her a Princess balloon to celebrate!  You are only sixth months once in your life!
 
 Her mommy had to come our way for a friends baby shower so we celebrated with her.  Her Poppy (my husband) had her giggling up a storm.  Maggie Kate is such a happy baby!  You can't tell from the pics but she has the bluest eyes like her Aunt Amber :)
 
 My two loves!  I love these two girls so much.  Maggie Kate looks just like her mommy when she was this age.  It just seems like yesterday her mommy was this age.  How time flies by! 
 
Thank you to those who have checked in on me.  I am now on meds for my thyroid and hopefully feeling better soon! 
 
Thanks for visiting!
Hugs,
Donna

Thursday, February 20, 2014

Update and Answers

First I'll update .... we had more snow! 
This was taken in the back of our house of the bridge that leads to the back pasture.  Snow is so pretty but I'm so glad I live in the South where we don't have that much!  Actually since this snowfall we had more snow.  I hope this is it for the year.  Bring on Spring!!
 
I have been doing a little embroidery.  I made this for Jen for Valentine's day.  It's a sweatshirt with her initials.  It's actually a very large design.  I should have taken a pic of the entire sweatshirt.
I embroider things for MK all the time but forget to take pics :(   
 
On Valentine's Day my husband and I took MK to see her mommy at work.  One of Jen's coworkers took this pic with her phone.  It made her mommy's day to see MK!  At five months old this baby loves to stand and loves attention.  Can you tell? LOL
 
And for the "answers" in the blog post title.
I have felt just so tired the last few months.  Along with just feeling overwhelmed, irritable, sweating profusely (in the cold winter months for me is just not normal), trembling in my hands, heart racing, night sweats, etc.  I thought it was just from being on the "run" taking care of my sweet grandbaby.  After all I haven't taken care of a little one in years! 
 
However I began to suspect something when my neck began to swell and was so painful.  Now after seeing an ENT and having a CT scan and ultrasound I have thyroid issues.  I have thyroid nodules and I have hyperthyroidism.  My thyroid is working too well!  I'm finally getting answers.  I have more tests next week and I will be seeing an endocrinologist.  Hopefully soon I can begin meds to help with my issues.  On a side note I have regular checkups every sixth months with blood work and all has been fine in the past.
 
Normally I don't blog about my health issues but I wanted to share a little of what's been going on and why I haven't blogged as much.  Hopefully once I get my health issues resolved I will be back to my old self!  I haven't responded to comments but I read them all and thank you :)
 
Thanks for visiting!
Hugs,
Donna

Thursday, February 6, 2014

Adventures of Living in the South

Thank you for all the comments on my last post about the snow.  I did have to stay at Jennifer's house for two nights because there was no way I could make it home.  It was a huge mess for days.  Once I left Jennifer's I got on a super busy main highway and it was crazy.  There were so many cars just left parked like a parking lot.  Some facing the opposite direction of where they should be going.   I have never seen so many cars left parked ON the highways.  Once I made it to the Interstate it also looked like a parking lot where people left their cars parked.  People slept in their cars in the freezing cold.  I heard on the news that over 1100 students  spent the night at school.  I am sure the teachers were exhausted!!  It was just a crazy event for the South!  Snow is so rare for us and we are not equipped with salt trucks or snow plows.  It took me about and hour and forty-five minutes to get home.  My normal drive is about fifty minutes.
 
My sweet husband was so glad to see me :)  Actually he would have driven in his big four wheel drive truck to pick me up if I had asked him.  It was better for us to stay safe.  He really missed me!  He loves to talk and he had no one to talk to except our furbabies :)  He talked my ears off when I did get home!  Gotta love him :)
 
Today we had a few snow flurries and people began to get concerned!  I know this has to be amazing to people who live in the colder states but only in the South :) 
 
Tuesday was my birthday ... I am now fifty-five!  I guess that makes me a senior citizen!  I wonder if I get discounts now at the senior rate? LOL 
 
We went to Jennifer's (she had the day off) and went to lunch and birthday cake ...yum 
Maggie Kate so wanted to dig into the cake!  I finally let her put a finger in it  She's going to love her first birthday with a "smash" cake!!  This little girl is so much fun!  My birthday cake last year said I was going to be a Nonna :)  Now look at the precious little girl we have in our lives.  How our lives can change in just a year.  We all feel that if we had Amber here our lives would be complete.
 
I have a quilting project I began last year for Easter and I hope to share it soon.  It has only taken me a year to complete it!
 
Thanks for visiting!
Hugs,
Donna

Wednesday, January 29, 2014

I wanted to document this event in my life so I might as well blog about it!  Here in Alabama we were expecting snow for the lower half of the state and along the Gulf Coast.  We were expecting a "dusting' of snow here with no travel problems and it would be later in the day if at all.  (I live in Northeast Alabama and my daughter lives in Birmingham an hour away from me.)  We don't see much snow at all here in the South but when it is predicted everyone goes to buy milk and bread!!  But people think THEY NEED IT when it's predicted to snow.  The shelves are cleared out at the stores and it's a huge joke in the South :)

Traffic mess on a main highway.
 
Accidents everywhere and abandoned cars.
 
Yesterday morning I made my way to my daughter's house to keep Maggie Kate for the day.  About 11:00 yesterday morning it began to snow and it was really coming down. The weather has been very cold and the ground was quickly covered as were the highways.  Normally school is let out early or called off for the day because we are not  prepared at all for snow here.  It's too dangerous for buses to make their usual routes with ice and snow.  This was so unexpected.  Everyone was at work or in school and totally not prepared for this disaster.

The traffic in Birmingham is awful and with snow and ice there were people at a standstill on the interstates and main highways all night long.  Spending the night in their cars in single digit temperatures.  Parents trying to leave work to pick up their children and go home to a warm house.  Traffic was gridlocked and accidents everywhere.  People left their cars and walked if they could to their homes or a nearby hotel to spend the night.  Others spent the night in stores or wherever they could find a warm place.  Churches were opened for people to spend the night. The thing that's really upsetting was children and babies that were in daycare or school and their parents could not pick them up :(  So many children very young or older children in high school were stuck for the night.  One of Jennifer's friends posted on FB who works at a high school said she was with 500-700 of her closest friends for the night.  Can you imagine spending the night in a high school with that many children???  They were making the most of the situation and I'm sure memories were made.  But what a nightmare.  Smaller children that had never been away from their parents for the night were left at daycare.

The lady with her high heels and designer handbag.

I saw pics of the news here close to Jennifer's house where women had left work in their high heel shoes and carrying their designer purses and walking along the main highway abandoning their cars.   People were trying to help but everyone was just stuck. Accidents everywhere.  We are not prepared for a little bit of snow and have no idea how to drive in it!! I know people who live in the North think were are a little nuts but it's true.  We just don't have much snow!

At the entrance to the subdivision where Jennifer lives a car was overturned.  I knew then that I was here for the night!   Thankfully Jennifer works five minutes from her house so she made it home around 3 in the afternoon safely.  I wasn't prepared to spend the night at her house but I had quickly thrown a few clothes in my bag before I left my house yesterday morning.  Thank goodness!  So again today I am here at Jennifer's house and spending the night again tonight.  I can't get home ... maybe tomorrow.  I think my husband is going stir crazy with me being gone :)

The temps are not above freezing again today so the snow and ice will be here for another day. Hopefully tomorrow it warms up and highways and interstates will clear.  In the meantime we are making the most of the situation and I'm getting to spend lots of time with MK!  Maybe tomorrow I will make it home to my own bed and if not its ok.  This will pass.

Hugs,
Donna

Thursday, January 16, 2014

Thank You and a Baby Quilt

Thank you all for the sweet comments and emails that were sent my way on my last post.  They mean the world to me!  I appreciate them and am working on responding to each one. 
I have decided I will blog when I have time.  Posts may be sporadic like they were last year but I really like to look back over the last four years to see how my life has changed.  How I've dealt with the loss of Amber, Jennifer getting married and the birth of Maggie Kate.  I sometimes have to go back and look for a recipe I posted because I couldn't remember where I placed the hard copy.
 
I really had a bad week last week.  I'll share a little of it with you.  My husband and I were going on a date for the first time in years.  His birthday was the 6th and Jennifer had given him tickets to an event in Birmingham for Friday night.  We left early and made a couple of stops before the concert and were "rear-ended".  A lady decided to run into the back of my car.  We were stopped at a red light when it happened.  I was leaning over in my seat putting something in my purse and bam :(  I am sore in my ribs and I have lower back pain.  I just had back surgery for a herniated disc a year ago.  The thing that was really disturbing is that the lady who hit us was so rude and just down right mean!  How in the world  people act like this I don't know. 
 
Now here's the first quilt I made for Maggie Kate! 
 I just wanted something simple and easy to make for the quilt and chose a simple design.  I bought the fabric a couple of summers ago and only had two yards of each print.  The prints are from the Elm Creek books author.  I can't remember her name but I love her books.  It's coordinates well with MK's nursery.
 
I quilted it with this simple stitch I've seen on other blogs that quilter's have used and loved doing it.  I will use this design again on other quilts that really need to be quilted!  I embroidered a really sweet label for MK so she'll always remember who made it for her.  Do you all know how much I love that baby? :)
 
I love keeping MK a couple of times each week and I see so much of her Mommy and Amber especially in her bright blue eyes.  I can't believe she's four months old!  How time flies.
 
Again thank you all so much for your kindness! 
 
Hugs,
Donna