Sunday, August 26, 2012

A Thank You Card...

My "Thank You" card for my St. Jude Team...
Card details...Flower Paper form Hobby Lobby(not sure of brand), Cardstock cut to fit an A-2 envelope, Die Cut is a Sizzix die, butterfly paper glitter paper is Making Memories and the body is  from Michaels Recollections line the metallic pack.  A quick shout out - Michaels Recollections line is perfect for die cutting in Cricuts or other machines.  Clean and a nice weight - it cuts like butter.  Brad's and ribbon from my stash to dress it up. 

My ramblings for today...20 years of family support and social service at the St. Jude Midwest Affiliate in Peoria, IL is where I "grew up."  I was a young mother...Chase was not even two yet...when John McCallister convinced me to interview for the position of  counselor at St. Jude. I was happy with my part time position at Peoria Alternative School but in the end - that I said yes.  I actually worked two part time jobs until Walker was born - keeping Wednesdays home and summers off from the school District. 

20 years in the "valley of the shadow of death" with cancer's youngest warriors and their families.  I am humbled that they allowed me to share their path and I will never be the same for the experience.  Traveling Light - is  a book by Max Lucado that dissects the 23 Psalm.  He writes about a young man and his daughters riding back from the cemetery after burying their mother. A huge semi truck passes them throwing a shadow over the car and making it dark.  He uses that to draw a picture of the "valley of the shadow of death".  The shadow cannot hurt us.  It can be scary - but in itself is nothing to fear- although it is human nature to do just that.  The book was given to me by a friend from church after my sister died.  

Today is the 17th anniversary of her death on Kadena Air Force Base in Okinawa and she is on my heart. 17 years ago today - the Air Force Chaplin arrived in Clifton where my parents were visiting my brother's office.  He was looking for directions to our farm and found them there together...just as I know God allowed for them to have each other when the letter was read. She died just two weeks before her wedding day.  I was forever changed by her loss, "Traveling Light" and 20 years in the field of pediatric cancer. April died just over a year after we had lost out niece, Jennifer,  in a car accident.  Loss changes us but it has it's gifts. It allowed me new insights into my work on what it feels like to have your family forever changed by a loss. 

Life seldom turns out the way we expected and the best plans can fail.  Still, we can "dance in the rain" and hold on to joy because we have a hope that "moths and rust cannot destroy". 


Saturday, August 25, 2012

I See You...

I try really hard to not be one of those people that just goes on and on about their own kids- you know the ones I mean.  Maybe that is why I love to scrapbook.  I can write down how I really feel about my children - for their benefit - and not someone else's boredom.  I want them to know how very much I love and treasure them. I want them to begin to grasp how God has blessed them.  When something in their life is hard, I don't want them to say "Why me?".  I want them to say, "Why not me?" 

In I once heard Max Lucado put it..."only by God's grace and Jesus' blood do I NOT get what I deserve."  Any good thing that comes is a gift and every trial is an opportunity to grow.  Joy is the fruit of this knowledge.  

As our children grow into young adults...our parenting role seems to change.  Less discipline and more mentoring.  I pray we are doing the right things so that they choose wisely their paths and whom they will serve.  We are not perfect and fail miserably at times.  I am glad they show us forgiveness. It is fun to do an occaisonal layout reflecting on who we see them becoming and how that makes us feel as parents.  

I used the Smart Alec kit from The Daily Digi....that little monthly download is truly the best friend to a new Digi or Hybrid scrapper, like myself.  Now- on to a paper page...after I FINALLY clean my Scrapcave. Don't tell my hubby- he will be so surprised. 

Have a sensational Saturday.

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

VBS memories...

I absolutely adore that my kids are still willing to serve at VBS every year.  I know the day will come that they can't, due to other commitments - but these are the sweetest memories.  The Pirate theme was fun and Walker diligently ran the sound board - even after Cross Country practice.  Spending time with the Leander's and the Roth's is a real bonus. 

We are so blessed to have found a church family to call our own - since our family lives far away. Most of my children's childhood memories are woven into the same fabric as Ryan, Emma, Blake and Leah's. It is good.

Do you have fond and fun VBS memories?  Do you have memories of growing up with certain kids that make you smile?  There are stories waiting to be told!

Live-laugh and love-

Sunday, August 5, 2012

Back to the Blog...

Well friends....finishing a 20 year season at the St. Jude Midwest Affiliate, visiting family in Florida and  starting my new life as the MJHS secretary...I have been absent from scrapping and blogging.  I hope that at the conclusion of this weeks VBS, that I will get back into the scrapping and card making zone.  I miss it and it is good for my soul. 

I have so many pictures that need love and attention.  I am hopeful that my dreams of a slower pace will be a reality, although I always seem to feel any open spot in my calendar.  MARGINS! I need to create them and protect them.  Not just for crafting purposes, but because they are good.  We all need a little down time.

I hope your August is off to a good start.