Friday, September 25, 2009

An Award!!

I was given an award today! The very sweet gal over on Pagan In The Rough bestowed this to me! I am SO touched by her thoughtfulness!! Thank you, thank you!!

Now, I am to:

1. Thank the person who gave you this award

2. Copy and put the award on your blog

3. Link to the person who nominated you

4. Name 7 things about myself that no one would really know

5. Nominate 7 Kreative Bloggers

6. Post links to the seven blogs you nominate

7. Leave a comment on each of the blogs, letting them know you nominated them.

Hmmm, this is the hard part.. . .

1. I'm 5'2'' tall

2. I've worn contact lenses since 1959

3. I would be legally blind if my vision couldn't be corrected with lenses

4.I took piano lessons for 10 years

5. My hubby and I used to spend a lot of time in the winters here, camping in the snow

6. I have a black beetle, which I love driving (and I have a black rose and a red rose in the bud vase)

7. I love to bake, all homemade, from scratch.

Now, with apologies, and I hope that this is ok, but a lot of my blogging friends have already received this award, but I know that there are some of you, who haven't yet, and do deserve it!

I'm really pressed for time, so I'm going to take the lazy way out. If you would like this award, please copy it and put it on your blog with pride! You also have to follow the rules, of listing 7 things that no one would know about you, and then, if you want to list 7 of your friends, that is fine, or you can do what I just did, the option is yours!


Magical Deviation

In between all of my errand running, I've been trying to fine tune my new scanner that my hubby bought for me. It converts my slides into digital images that I can easily use on my computer, and store on a DVD.

I've been disappointed with the quality of color, even after I do whatever I can, with my current software to make it look like the original. A dear friend has suggested another program, which I have yet to check out, but intend to try it very soon! Once I get started on a project like that, I delve right in, and I haven't had time lately to have that pleasure!

But late last night, while going through my slides, I came across one that I humbly got an award for in an area photo contest, and was blown away when the judge compared it to a Georgia O'Keeffe!

I had such a good feeling when I shot this batch of images, and they were always some of my favorites. I was also always very careful, when making prints of it, to make sure that the color matched as closely to the original as possible. .a very intense, orange/gold that knocked your socks off if you saw it in person.

So, I'm thinking. ."Oh, it's just this one slide. .I'll hurry up and scan it, so I can see it on my computer screen".

First stage is to put the slide in the tray, insert it into the scanner, and the scanned image shows up in the software. It looked great! Color was just about right on!

The second stage, is when you transfer it from that software program, to the photo program. Imagine my surprise when this showed up!

I did a double take! A triple take! I could not believe my eyes! Not just because of the EXTREME color shift, but because it was down right magically beautiful!!! I have a large computer screen, and this image filled it completely, drawing me in.

While you would rarely find this color of a fungi in nature (although there are some natural blue ones), this just astonishes me! I don't know what happened to the translation, but it is pure magic.

And I never would have experienced it any other way. I never thought about trying color changes on it. .I never thought that it would look any better than the original. Boy, was I wrong!! As a naturalist, no, this would not do, but as an art print? Oh yeah. . . . . SO much better!!! I can only hope that the color showing up on your monitor is as gorgeous as it looks on mine. A deep electric purple, with silvery edging. .pure magic!!

So now. .a question for you. . have you ever had Magical Deviations happen to you? Something SO unexpected that never would have happened, had a misstep or technical error, or something completely out of the ordinary never occurred? And how did you react to that surprise? Were you adverse to the result, or did you embrace it? Did you immediately decide that it wasn't correct, or were you open to the possibilities that it provided?

I've always loved doing abstracts of nature, or more likely, capturing the natural abstracts, zooming in to where the average eye can't see, or by distorting the botanically correct, for form and color, but I never, ever thought about shifting the natural colors to such extremes. This one image. .one little slide, has opened a door for me, and one I'll never forget! Now I'm even more anxious to explore these images that I haven't seen in so long! If you don't hear from me, you'll know what I'm doing!!!

Wishing everyone a wonderful weekend!

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Thinking Pink!

It seems a little obtuse for me to be thinking "pink" when it is Autumn, and I'm in heaven, surrounded by obnoxiously wonderful, glorious shades of warm rusts, oranges, reds, golds & browns, but it is for a good cause.

Yesterday, I went in for my regularly scheduled hair cut, and I realized that Breast Cancer Awareness month is on the horizon. They had their pink posters up already, and the gals there are all getting ready to do up their "do's" by adding a pink streak. Even my admittedly, very conservative friend who cuts my hair has one dropped into her blond hair, underneath, so it seductively peeks out now and then, when she moves her head.

I didn't get one last year, because we were gone part of the month, and my appointment wasn't until the end of October, but I made up for it this year! I was the first of their clientele to get a BRIGHT pink streak right in front of my very short hair. It is supposed to fade out to a very pretty pink with repeated washings, and is supposed to last all through October, which is great! All for $5.00, all going to the American Cancer Society! What fun, for a good cause!

No, I don't have a photo. .yet! I hope to have a camera before this pink hair fades, but you can look at this cutie. .she takes a much better photo than I would anyway. .but her pink, is just about the same shade as mine.

Vicki, who cuts my hair, was laughing, asking what my daughters were going to think of Mom getting a hot pink streak dropped into her hair.

"Oh that Mom! She has a birthday, and now look at what she is doing!" lol I told her that I'd tell them to lighten up, and why I did it. Hopefully, they'll want to do it too!

Many salons in the area are taking part by doing the same thing. You might want to check around to see if any in your area are doing this too. .or suggest it to your favorite one. It is easy to do, isn't a forever thing, and it is for a very good cause.

Wishing everyone a day filled with love and laughter!

P.S. I've already scheduled to have a blue streak put in, in the Spring, for Prostate Cancer research.

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Another Black Hole

I found another black hole this morning, but this one is a delight to see again, after soooooo much time has passed. Do you recognize this one?

My darling sweetie, ironically, since my camera bit the dust, had ordered a converter for me, for my birthday. It converts my slides into digital images via my computer. So guess what I started playing with this morning?

As it so often happens, when you get one thing as improvement, you then have to buy more "new" to go with it. Now I've found that my photo software is totally inadequate for fine tuning the quality and color saturation of my slides into digital form. It is a bit frustrating to my color critical eye, that the digitals are not coming out with the same crisp, clear color that the original slides are, but that will be another acquisition for another time.

In the meantime, I'm rediscovering old photos, and making many a quick trip down memory lane, not only in the images that I'm seeing, but where I was when I was taking them, and the hours spent loading film canisters, with a 100 foot reel of film put into my bulk film loader.

Put all ingredients into a film changing bag, seal, and insert arms up to your elbows into the elastic bound sleeves, slightly cutting off the circulation in the very arms and hands that you need to function. Feel your way around inside of the bag, loading this huge spool into the loader, and closing it up properly so that no light would ruin that whole expanse of film!

Then after a delightfully long morning (always quit by noon, when the sunlight was too harsh so we got out there just as the sun was rising.), it was back home to develop the slides. I usually only developed 2 rolls at a time, but could do up to 6. I laugh when I think back about how I would sweat, when learning to load those first reels and put them into the light tight processing canister. Again, this all had to be done inside the bag. But like all things that require practice, pretty soon, I could do it with my eyes closed!

But, oh! The delight in taking the finished film off of the roll, to hang and dry! I could never wait to see them on the light table, and would get quick peeks, backlighting them with a flashlight.

Even though I had to throw away thousands of images that were ruined by a broken water pipe, I still have a nice stack to keep me busy until I can get my new camera! What fun!!

Do you recognize this "Black Hole" now?

Wishing everyone a beautiful day!

Monday, September 21, 2009

Well Shoot!!! & My Ort Jar!

What I'm really doing, is NOT shooting. .with my camera, that is! Over the weekend, I tried taking a photo of my September Ort Jar, but no luck. Charged up brand new batteries. Same results. Total black screen. In doing a little research, I found out that the computerized focus module on my camera has failed. . permanently. . .this was a problem on the previous version of my camera, and they decided that it was so much fun having irate customers calling, and even bring a lawsuit against the company, that they continued with the same feature, built exactly the same way, for their new and improved model!

Of course, it is no longer under warranty, and in fact, have discontinued this model, not offering any type of service to it. Even when other's who had the similar problem, called repairs, they were told that even under warranty, it would cost at least $200.00 to attempt to fix it, without any guarantees that it would continue to work correctly for any length of time.

I had three cameras, all manual, of this same brand, that operated under harsh conditions for years and years. In fact, they are still usable. But my favorite brand of film has been off of the market for quite a few years now, even in the bulk cans that I used to buy. I gave my son all of my darkroom equipment, so I'd have to pay for processing, should I find another film that I liked. .all in all, I guess I'll be hunting for another digital to tide me over until I can buy the digital of my dreams!

So until I can pick up another camera, this will be the last image that you'll see here for a week or more, unless it is something that I can scan.

My August, 2009 Ort Jar! As you can see by the picture quality, I was finding it a challenge to get these photos done before it went completely black. I could only adjust it so much on the computer, so I greatly apologize for the quality of the image!

And of course, now is when I wanted to start sharing photos of my Halloween collection. I've been seeing some truly grand ones on other blogs, that only sparks me to buy more! Shame on all of you! lol

I had forgotten how lost I've felt when I don't have a working camera! It all came flooding back over me on Saturday! How spoiled we get, so quickly! All will be well though, eventually. If need be, I'll just start sketching what I would normally photograph! lol

Wishing everyone a glorious First Day Of Autumn!!

Saturday, September 19, 2009

Creative Spaces ~A Question And Answer Dialogue

Creative spaces. . .this was something that I've been carrying around, bouncing the concept off of the walls of my mind for weeks, and wanted to get everyone's input on their own creative space. If they are happy with it, what improvements they would make if they had carte blanc, to do so.

Is your creative space primarily in your mind, so that you can successfully create on a whim, whenever the mood and inspiration impales you with a lightning bolt, no matter where you are?

Or are you more comfortable with exterior sensory encouragement? If so, what lights up those creative synapse, and gets them sparking? Do other visual or audio features cause you distraction, or do you find them energizing? Do certain colors enhance your creative atmosphere, or adversely dampen it?

Do you have a dream room that you would give your eye teeth to have? What does it look like? Do you already have your prime creative center? How long have you had it? Does it work for you? What features have you found that makes you wonder how you ever got along without them? What would you do different if you were to build a new room? Do you still use it with any regularity, or do you find yourself bending to the habits of yore?

I'm hoping that Cindy F. will answer that. Her Mr. Right built her a gorgeous work space, and she has had time to get used to it now.

I haven't talked to anyone yet, who at least wasn't curious about other people's creative spaces, which is probably why two publications came out last year, and have had successful issues since. One is "Where Women Create, put out by Stampington & Co. The other is called "Studios", offered by the "Cloth, Paper & Scissors" parent company.

The current "Where Women Create" is out now, and the new "Studios" will be issued sometime in November, I believe.

I have all of the issues. I love seeing not only the individual features of different artist's work spaces, but the over all atmosphere and attitude of their space. I love the diversity, and how their work space reflects the tone of their completed work. Even more delightful, is when their studio and their completed works don't "jive" at all!

Right now, my "official" workspace is a disaster. I can't even work in it. I go upstairs, get the supplies that I need, and sit at our dining room table. But my dream of how I want my room someday, is firmly planted in my head, having thought out most of the features, and when I pan around the room in my dreams, and come to a raw, unfinished area, my mind sees a blank canvas, waiting for the moment when that perfect concept will fall into place. I've been anxious to get started on it, even though parts of it will be major construction work, but a couple of weeks ago, Ed tells me that when I do get my studio done, that he will miss me being downstairs with him. I told him that he could always come upstairs with me, and he looked forlornly at his beloved football game. The only way that I'll get him out of that chair at game time, is if I have a TV put in my studio, along with a comfy easy chair, which would not only take up a lot of space, but would negate my sometimes desire to get away from the noise of sports on TV.

But I'm not going to sweat it. Even if I do get my studio done in the next few years, there are worse things than hauling my supplies downstairs to work. At least I'll have a nice place, full of good energy to store everything, and who knows, I may just get Ed to start creating something too!

Soooooo, now. . .do you look at those creative spaces magazines too? Do you feel inspired by them, or do they make you feel worse? Lots and lots of questions for you! I'm anxious to read your thoughts! Thank you!!

Fall & Halloween Addictions!

What is it about Fall and more specifically Halloween magazine issues that makes people's eyes burn brightly, and their reflexes become lightning quick, to grab as many different issues that catch their eyes, clutching their treasures, almost in cloaked secrecy until they get their prizes safely into a bag where enemy hands can no longer snatch them away?

Even the ones dedicated to landscaping have popped up in greater quantity the past few years. I can attest to that observation by my growing stack of publications that show me how easy it is to transform my weedy, now forlorn looking patch of green into a long lasting glorious glow of oranges and yellows. I confess, I do plant for Autumn. Nearly everything that is in my garden has foliage that turns into various shades of oranges and golds, with a few accents of dark red thrown in for contrast. I LOVE being out there when it is in it's glory! The air itself turns amber and it is like being inside a jar of honey! But more about that later!

Back to Halloween. . .

Like a lot of the other fanatics, I too am guilty of, I have snagging my share of Fall & Halloween issues anywhere that I can find them.

I am making an effort, trying to be practical this year, so I'm not buying ones that cater more toward costumes for children, or parties, since all of the costumes that I make are for grown children, who still seek out Mom's sewing skills when Halloween rolls around. (And usually a week before the big day, because they haven't decided what they want to dress as, or if they are even going to that big party, even though they do each year, and have a grand time!)

But decorating ideas, neat recipes, or Halloween art, and my pulse races and I start salivating! Not a pretty sight.

There are two publications this year, that stand out for me, one a traditional one for me, and one, a total surprise and delight!

The traditional one is Martha Stewart's Halloween. No matter what one may think of her (personally, I adore so much about her), that woman knows how to celebrate her holidays, with Halloween being a standout! I'm sure that everyone has seen her Halloween issue this year, but in case anyone has had blinders on at the grocery checkout counters, here she is with one of her absolutely gorgeous horses!

My surprise issue is in the form of the quarterly publication of Art Doll.

Before we left in August, I went to a nearby little town, to order my annual floral arrangement for my daughter's open house at the school where she teaches. She teaches art, so I always like to try and come up with something very creative, and had found this shop, where each year we put our heads together to come up with something fabulous! They have never let me down!!

Imagine my delight though, when walking through the back door, out of the sticky August heat, I entered into a darkened, ceiling to floor, magical fantasy land of Halloween! And not just any Halloween decor, but the folk art, reproductions of the 1800's and early 1900's, or the very creative new offerings in the same style. Everywhere I looked, I saw multiples of Halloween folk that were begging to come home with me! Flowers? Did I come in for flowers? I briefly wondered if my daughter would miss her annual bouquet! lol Surely she would understand that I was heavily under the influence, innocently entering, only to be drawn in and captured before I knew what was happening. Pretty heady atmosphere, that even the strongest would have a hard time resisting!

But, I persevered, after making one detour after another, I finally made it to the front desk to place my order. I truly couldn't help it that a couple of Halloween Spirits attached themselves to my arm, and wouldn't let go, no matter how hard I tried to shake or pry them off! And more than a few others made me promise in blood (mine) that I would be back to bring them back home with me, when we returned from our trip. I'm going to have to do some fancy talking to them, as to why I am delayed. But I digress.

Throughout the shop in strategic little baskets, were postcards with the Ghoultide Gathering show advertised in glorious 4 color processing. The button is on the sidebar of my blog. Bill, the ever so helpful enabler at the floral shop started telling me about Ghoultide, and how I should go this year. I already knew about it from years past, and was hoping to be able to go this year. He told me that a good friend of his, Scott Smith is a co-producer of the show, as well as the one in California, Halloween & Vine.

I told him that a blogging friend of mine, Lori, from Notforgotten Farm was going to be there, and from there we started talking about those flowers for my daughter.

A week later, I am standing in one of the Barnes & Nobles stores in Rochester, MN, looking for diversions to occupy my mind and time spent in the waiting rooms. My ever shifting and alert eyes fell upon the cover of Art Doll Quarterly, and I immediately snatched it up and held it close, in fear that someone might try and grab it away from me! I could not believe the awesome doll that graces the cover!! I was in love!! I couldn't even wait until we got back to our motel room, carefully opening and perusing it while we ate lunch. There are all sorts of wonderful Halloween creations in it, but I first sought out the article that went with the cover doll. .I KNOW that you are ahead of me here. .to my astonishment, and total delight, I find that this whole scenario has gone full circle! The doll, and the others featured in the article are the creations of none other, than Scott Smith! If you click on his name, you'll be taken to his studio site.

When I called the floral shop to tell them how much my daughter loved her floral creation, I told Bill that I had picked up the current copy of ADQ, and how in awe I am, of Scott's work. He told me that ADQ has sold out in all of the area's stores that carry it, and that no one can find a copy. I am SO happy that I bought mine when I did! In talking to the people at ADQ, they found out that it is one of the best selling issues they've ever had!

So, if you happen to see it at your local bookstore or magazine stand, pick one up, if only for as long as it takes you to see the cover doll, and the ones in the article spread. They are all truly awesome!!!

I see by the clock that my break time is up! Time to get back to the trunks and storage boxes, unearthing my own Halloween treasures. While he leaves the actual decorating part to me, Ed loves to see our home decorated for Halloween, so this year, they are all making an appearance extra early, so that we can enjoy them a little more before it is time to decorate for the next holiday! What fun!!!

This time of year is SO exhilarating, isn't it?

Wishing everyone a glorious First Weekend of Fall, and a Blessed Mabon Celebration!!

Friday, September 18, 2009

Black Holes

We have just returned from taking our little Max to the vet. Just his routine checkup that is so important because he is an FeLV kitty, with a compromised immune system. He is doing exceedingly well!

It is those types of necessary tasks that are keeping me busy, but grounded these days. And I definitely need the magnetic pull to good Mother Earth, where I seem to be able to draw my energy and strength.

Many studies are going on by well qualified astrophysicists to learn more about the Black Holes out there in space, but I really wish that more time would be spent to learn about the Black Holes that are here, on Earth, right around us. I know for sure that they exist, because a few weeks ago, I fell into one. Just like the ones in space, they contain everything and nothing.

Back in August, my hubby and I made our journey on the now very familiar route back to the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, MN, for the love of my life's quarterly cancer check. He has been battling it for 12 years now, and while he hasn't ever been cancer free during all of that time, with the miracles of modern medicine, aided by some very strong regular visualization sessions, it has been kept contained. If it started to escape, it was quickly squashed back down again.

This time though, I didn't feel the Good Energy that I usually sense, and we didn't see any Hawks along the route like we usually do, and sure enough. The cancer is slightly on the rise again, only this time, they not only can't figure out where it is for certain, but are debating best how to attack it. So right now, while various people with important knowledge and input discuss things, we wait until November, when we go back to see what was decided. They are confident, with the current drugs that Ed is on, it won't suddenly mushroom into something that will be more difficult to conquer.

But the affects from that trip were far from over. Not only did that trip turn into a much longer stay, but we had to come back home for a few days, then returned for another 12.

I never thought that I would ever have to say, this, but that turned out that the cancer returning would be the least of my worries. Ed has been having slight memory problems for some time now. Nothing serious, but little things, but with increasing frequency. Those types of memory challenges, along with various physical changes, confirmed as best they can by a series of tests, introduced me to the world of Lewy Body Dementia, or Dementia with Lewy Bodies. In short, this isn't Alzheimer's, but a person afflicted with it can develop the mental problems of a person with Alzheimer's, combined with the physical challenges of Parkinson's. It was at that moment, that I fell into that BIG Black Hole, gasping for air, and feeling like I was never ever going to be able to put my feet on something solid ever again, nor find a reason to smile. How I managed, on the exterior, to keep a calm, cool facade is beyond my own capabilities. My Spirit Guides must have had their hands full, creating that image, and I am exceedingly grateful to them. Once again, they have saved the day.

That night, Ed had to stay at the clinic, in their sleep clinic, to be tested for Sleep Apnea, one of the symptoms of LBD. Not everyone who suffers from sleep apnea, has dementia, but it is a marker that they look for in LBD. Ed has extreme Sleep Apnea, and now has a breathing machine with a mask that he wears every night, forcing his airway open, to keep him breathing.

I didn't want to be apart from him that night, but in retrospect, it was probably the best situation for me, because it gave me the time to do research, and cry without him seeing me. For some Spirit Guided reason, the whole concept of what has attacked him, didn't register. He told me as we left that department, that he was elated that they didn't tell him that he has Alzheimer's. That was his one big worry. Ed's personality is the type that not only should he never learn of the possibilities that lie ahead, but no one should tell him either.

Besides that being a major concern to me, my other was how I was going to even get through the next few days, let alone, the future. I know where I got the strength, but am still in awe, because I consider it a miracle.

By the next morning, I realized that this day was really no different than the days before. the only difference being that now I know what is causing Ed's inattention. He hadn't turned into the thoughtless husband who wasn't paying attention to me, he was honestly forgetting!! It was like a switch has been turned off in me. Immediately, I no longer mind having to repeat things over and over. I act like we are discussing something for the first time, and actually feel pleasure in doing so.

I still have moments when tears lay close to the surface, like now. It is hard for me to talk about it, or even think about it. I never, ever thought that I would be thankful that I have developed allergies in just the past 2 years, but boy, that excuse has sure come in handy lately, and he accepts it.

As for his memory problems that he is aware of, Sleep Apnea causes memory problems. Easy explanation.

Finding a reason to laugh, or even smile was going to be a greater challenge, or so I thought. But lo and behold, later that first day after we were reunited at the clinic, there it was. .a bumper sticker on a car that pulled up to the clinic's grand entry. We were sitting there, waiting for our shuttle back to the motel, both tired, and me full of stress, when this little car pulls in, and on the back bumper, this long sticker with a black silhouette of a Scottie, and the words, "My Scottie Is Smarter Than Your Honor Student". I immediately thought of Holly , and her Fiona and Rory, and burst out laughing. I had shown their photos to Ed, and had shared Fiona's horrible encounter with the bees, with him, so after a reminder, he remembered and had a good chuckle too.

I wondered too, how I would be able to deal with the ordinary things of daily living. They all seemed so unimportant, and in light of our sudden disclosure, everything else seemed surreal. People around us discussing the pros and cons of where to eat dinner, which color sweatshirt to buy in the gift shop, arguing over who left an appointment schedule sheet in their motel room. I wanted to scream at all of them, that there are much more important things going on. To quit obsessing over such trivial matters!!!

But in the days since, especially since we've been home now for 2 days, I've come to realize that unlike the Black Holes in space, where there isn't any solid foundation, the Black Holes here around us, do. They are the things that have to be done each day. Our daily rituals each morning, our errands, the things that we do for pleasure. These are the building blocks that keep us from being lost forever in the darkness. The only difference now, is I am having to take a more active part in each and every one of them. And each task becomes a treasure, because we are doing it together.

When Ed was first diagnosed with cancer years ago, the fragility of our lives intertwined really hit me, and while it made me treasure our time together even more, at the same time, I have felt the strength of the Good, Healing Energies swirling around him, and knew that he would either beat it, or at the very least, keep it contained, and be able to function normally for years. Now, it is an additional, new challenge, but also a gift.

We all know that we will have to Travel On, at some point, but none of us dwell on it, getting wrapped up in daily activities, accepting our days as they are given to us. Our kids tease us, that Ed and I are joined at the hip because we are together all of the time, and we never, ever tire of each other. He is not only my love, but my best friend, and my soulmate. I've been given the additional gift to savor and acknowledge all of the moments that we have together. We should all be so lucky to remember to "feel" how special our time is with those that we love, and not take them for granted.

On a more practical note, I realize too, that my use of time is going to change. I was wondering how much I would have left to do anything creative. I seem to already have problems being able to set aside time, and quit frankly, for the past number of days, being creative is the last thing on my mind. However, at night, my dream state has become hyperactive, and I dream about painting, drawing, sculpting. If I only knew what I was working on! lol I never see that part, and it is frustrating!! And when I told Ed about my dreams, he said, "Good! It's about time! When are you going to start?" But start on what? But if it is true that artists must suffer to create good art, then I've got some masterpieces brewing somewhere inside of me. My heart is shattered.

This reminds me though, of when I was surprised back in 1968, before the days of ultrasound, with the birth of twins. Yes, that was a marvelously good event, while this is not, but my reactions are the same. When people ask me now, how I took care of two tiny babies all day long, by myself, I look back and tell them that I had one tiny moment of panic, when they were both finally home, and my hubby had to go back to work. They were both asleep, but I knew that in three hours they would be awake, and would need to be changed and fed. Formula needed to be made, and bottles sterilized! From that point on, I was too busy, to realize that I was too busy, but treasuring every moment. I will be doing the same thing now. My only regret is that I don't have the energy and stamina that I had when I was 20, but hopefully, I am wiser than I was then.

When I set up this blog, I knew that sometimes blogs turn into either a platform for ranting, or complaining, and I made a vow not to do either. I'm not really doing either here, but I still felt reluctant to share what has happened to us because I didn't want to make anyone feel sad or depressed. I look to other people's blogs to cheer me up, and I expect that others may come here for the same reason. When I returned, I found that some of my new friends had already left, and I don't blame them. They didn't know what was going on, only that I was ignoring my blog, and not responding to theirs.

So, I decided to explain my absence, not only this time, but because it will happen again. Ed has agreed to be a part of a study that the Mayo Clinic is doing involving all levels of memory loss, and so each year, or possibly twice a year, we will be back at the clinic, in addition to all of the trips for his cancer treatment, for more memory tests, more MRI's, and some experimental scans.

I also contemplated closing my blog down, but have decided not to. I continue to be inspired by all of the creativity that I see coming from other people, and I hope to somehow turn all of this shattered energy into something, someday. It may take a lot of tinkering for it to happen, because right now, I don't even know which direction to take, but like everything else that has happened lately, hopefully, it will fall into place when I need it the most.

So. .enough of this! Before we had left, I had a slew of things that I wanted to share with you, but with the advent of our latest trip, it all flew right out of my mind. I'm recapturing them, bit by bit, and now have to find some time to take some photos, providing my camera will cooperate, and then do some serious blog entering!

In the meantime, I know that others have said it before, and more eloquently, but take the time to savor some moments each day with those you love, never, ever, go to bed angry with one another, nor even when you have to be apart, even for a short bit. Love is amazing.

Thank you all for hanging in here with me! Now, let's get ready to celebrate! While official Fall is only a couple of days away, and my birthday is coming up, I can feel it in the air! My favorite season!!! I bought some new logs for our little outdoor fireplace, and it is cool enough to need them in the evenings now! What fun! Come and join us!

I'm Back

Hmmm, I see where I'm losing some friends along the way, and thought that I'd better at least drop in here long enough to let everyone know that I'm back, at least for a few days before we have to be gone for only three days this trip.

I've got a number of things to share, but haven't had time to do so as yet, so please bear with me!

I also see that I have a lot of catching up with everyone, but look forward to doing just that!

Until then, I hope that you are getting to do something that you enjoy, and that your day is bursting with good energy!!

Hugs & Blessings!