December 25, 2010

I wish everyone a wonderful and blessed Christmas. 

We had a busy day even though three of the five of us are sick.  My mom and Jeremy both have what the dr calls the crud...hacking cough, stuffiness, sneezing, the Nyquil commercial.  Ashley and Lyric were also here...of course.  Lyric is sick and was running a fever.  I actually did pretty good faking being happy.  It wasn't til the presents started that I slipped and started to cry.  But we all survived it.

Lyric and Jeremy both got lots and lots of clothes.  Lyric's came from his aunt in Florida and Jeremy's came from Ashley.  Mom got two parakeets from Jeremy...which she absolutely adores.  She named them Sugar and Spice.  I got a gift certificate from from Jeremy.  Ashley and Lyric gave me a jigsaw puzzle and a tin of cookies.  Mom got the same.  Mom got Jeremy, Ashley and myself one of those digital frames.  I am so excited to be able to put all my pictures of Tommy in there.  Oh yeah, the babies got new food bowls from Grandma.

My gifts are still unfinished.  It has been a really hard month.  I was doing fairly good and on time until the 11th.  A dear family friend died quite unexpectedly.  We were all shocked by it.  When we went to visitation, I could have sworn it was Tommy in the casket.  His wife told me the same thing, before I told her.  It took me several days to be able to pick up a needle again.  I still haven't been able to get over all the depression and emotions.  I don't remember last Christmas at all, with the exception of getting Tommy's death certificate on Christmas Eve.

Enough depressing talk for one night, especially tonight.  God Bless each and everyone of you and yours.  Even if you don't read my blog, I am wishing it for everyone in the world tonight.

December 23, 2010

I just learned something tonight that absolutely pisses me off no end.  Did you know that it is against the law (probably just in the stupid state of Louisiana) to have a candlelight church service???  Apparently the powers that be don't trust us not to set ourselves on fire.  Every year my favorite service has been the one late Christmas Eve night where everyone gets a candle, lights it, and then sings Silent Night.  I mean come on, we are not children who need to be protected from ourselves.  I don't know anyone that would intentionally go to church on Christmas Eve to set themselves and everyone else on fire.  I mean, yes, I know accidents happen, but come on.  Next thing you know there will be a law saying we can't all leave at the same time cause someone might have a car accident or cause a traffic jam.  The really sad thing is that the people who a making these assine laws were elected by the people they are trying to protect from themselves.  Maybe we need a law prevent us from electing jackass into positions of power.  But then I'm from Louisiana...can anyone spell CORRUPTION.

Ok, I'm finished ranting now.

December 18, 2010

It's Zoe's 5th Birthday today!!!!!!!!!!
Happy Birthday, baby girl.

March 2006 3 months old

December 2010 5 years old

December 12, 2010

Vintage Yoyo Quilt Giveaway

This absolutely beautiful vintage yoyo quilt is up for grabs over at Thearica's Pigtales and Quilts.  She is giving it away on Christmas Eve for your favorite Christmas memory.  Please be sure to mention that you found it here.

December 07, 2010

I have to share this picture.  This is Lyric.  Isn't he so adorable?????
I WON!!!!!  I WON!!!!
I entered a blog giveaway over on Orna Willis' blog Ornaments.  It is an Extraordinary Giveaway.  It is the first time I have ever won a blog giveaway.  I am so excited. 
We had to leave a comment on our favorite Christmas tradition.  My favorite tradition was, of course, with Tommy.  Every Christmas Eve we would sneak away from wherever we were and go to Cracker Barrel for breakfast.  We would sit and talk, hold hands and just enjoy being with each other at a very special time of year.  I miss that so much.
Here is a picture of what I won....doesn't it look wonderful!!!

December 01, 2010

Here are some pictures of my latest project.  It is a cq'd bible cover for my mom for Christmas.  I can show the pics cause she has seen them and knows what I'm making.  I have the motif for the spine completed.  I may add some beading to it, but my mom will worry about damaging it, so I may just leave it as is.  What do ya'll think?  The image came from one of the antique embroidery books that Sharon Boggon talked about on her blog.
It is done on a piece of satin.  The scanner was being persnickety so the pic is not that good.  I used silk threads for the leaves and wheat sheaves.  The flowers are done in perle 8 from

The motif for the front cover is a work in progress.  I have some more details to add, along with beading, etc.  I think, though, that I will go ahead and piece the cover before I do anything else on it.  It is a large bible, which is why I did these two pieces before putting it together.

The Celtic knot cross is worked on dupioni silk with perle 8 threads from

I'll show more as the project comes together.  Right now I just have to find the right fabrics to use.

Today is my birthday.  This is the second one without Tommy.  I don't remember the one last year.  My mom is getting me my first cake in 7 years.  Tommy and I always celebrated birthdays by going to dinner.

 I have noticed lately that it is getting easier to think and talk about my love without crying.  I still miss him desperately, but it doesn't hurt so bad any more.  Time really does heal the hurt, but that is truly the last thing one wants to hear.  We made so many wonderful memories over the years.  I kinda look at it like a gift from God and Tommy.  The pain has lessened and now the memories are returning bringing with them smiles, laughter, and a few tears.  I am so enjoying them

More to come.  Have a wonderful memory filled day.

November 30, 2010

August BJP
Eternally Knotted Together

For Christmas in 2007 Tommy bought me an Irish wedding ring.  He had been looking for one for a few years but had not found one he really liked.  This one was found at the Irish Shoppe on Toulouse St. in the French Quarter.  This Celtic knot and the Gaelic words for Love is Eternal circle the band.

I still have four pages to make and will try hard to have them done by the end of the year.

October 07, 2010

July Bead Journal Page
Love, New Orleans Style
April 2003
October 2005-March 2008

The weekend before we got married, Tommy and I went to Baton Rouge for a workshop I was doing with the LA Ag Dept.  We checked into the hotel and headed to New Orleans, only an hour away.  We took a horse drawn carriage ride through the French Quarter followed by beignets and hot chocolate at Cafe Dumonde.  It was so romantic and wonderful.

August 29th of 2005, The Big Easy got hit by Hurricane Katrina.  The company that owns the hotel Tommy was chief engineer at in New Hampshire also had a property in N.O.  They wanted a chief with LA experience to be in charge of putting it back in order.  So in early October, we left NH for NO.  Between the time the storm happened and we were sent south, the chief at the NO property retired and a new one was promoted.  Tommy went in as Asst. Chief, which suited him just fine.  The hotel we were moving into was The La Pavillon on Poydras St.We lived here from early October til just after the first of December.  I will never forget being introduced to the general manager and then being told by him that I was not to leave the hotel for any reason unescorted.  New Orleans was under martial law.  I could not even go across the street to the parking lot where our truck was parked alone.  We had a nice room on the sixth floor overlooking Baronne Street.

Life in post Katrina New Orleans was something I hope to never experience in anyway again.  I will never forget National Guardsmen with M-16s on every corner; hundreds of "drowned" vehicles under I-10; circles with X's through them made by the searchers looking for survivors or bodies;  high water marks in the middle of buildings and homes; boats in the middle of levees, roadways, and highways; overturned cars in lawns; refridgerators lining the streets; gunshots at night; a sea of blue roofs (tarps).

There were also lots of good times.  We lived in the French Quarter on Royal Street.  There was a nice little Italian restaurant a block from us.  The owners walked past our place each day on their way to work.  They made friends with Zoe...and of course us.  Each time we would get a pizza delivered they would include a little package for Zoe filled with pepperoni and cheese bread.  She is so spoiled.  Each Mardi Gras there were atleast a thousand or more colorly costumed people that paraded past the apartment.  Tommy, Rafal, Zoe, and I would sit on the balcony and people watch for hours.  Tommy wouldn't let me go downstairs til he knew I didn't have a pair of scissors in my hands...boy those costumes were beautiful and would have look wonderful on the floor of my studio and in my

The gentleman who lived in the lower half of the house was the retired curator of the NO Jazz Museum.  He was a great neighbor.  Each Mardi Gras he would keep a sign in list for everyone who stopped by his place.  The first year we were there, 2006, he had almost a thousand names on that list.  My inlaws were visiting and my fil sat down there with him and loved every moment of it.  He talked about it for years.

Looking back, New Orleans was a really happy time for us. 

September 07, 2010

It's been a while since my last post.  I just can't seem to get up the enthusiasm to write here or anywhere else.  I been going up and down with depression.  The last really bad bout lasted most of the summer.  Talking to my family and friends was hard enough, writing here was impossible.  I still have two BJP pages to post and four more to make.  I'm sure they will get done just don't know when. 

I have taken to setting myself short term goals and it seems to be working so far.  Mom and I are doing two shows that are coming up.  One is the Herbal Harvest Fest at St. Patrick's Episcopal Church, which is just down the road from us.  This show is on October 23, the day after my brother's 25th birthday.  The second show is at the WM Moose Lounge on Nov. 6th.  My best friend, Allison, kinda signed me up for this one.  The lady in charge of finding the vendors lives 5 doors down from her and is a good friend of her mother's.  We are one of only 14 vendors at that show.

Of course right in between the two shows is the one year anniversary.  I don't know if I am going to be able to survive it.  Allison is taking the day off and coming to spend the night with me.  She says the three of us are having a sleep over, mom and Allison.  Just thinking about it makes me want to cry.

I have been doing better on the crying front.  I don't do it quite so often any more.  Of course it doesn't take anything to make me bawl.  But I can look at pics of my beloved without crying.  I've gotten where I can talk about memories without crying.  I know my mom is getting tired of hearing about things she already knows about but she is awesome and gets me to talk about our life together more.

We are planning on going to New Hampshire in April to clean out our storage...finally.  My brother and Allison both say they are going with us.  It will be my mom's first big vacation in just over ten years.  We spent two weeks in Colorado in 2000.  Had a wonderful time.  I am hoping this trip will be just as good.  I am, though, a little paranoid about bedbugs.  Actually I seem to be getting obsessed with fear of them...of getting them on this trip.  Who knows...just gives me something else to think and worry about.

Question:  Why are people surprised I am still wearing my wedding ring?  Is there a time limit to wear it?  Why would I take it off?  I had to stop going to grief counseling classes cause they kept telling me, 4 months after I lost Tommy, that I was to stop wearing my ring and stop telling people I am married.  They kept tellign us we are single again and to start saying it and putting it on things that ask about marital status.  That was one of the major reasons I stopped going.  That and the fact that everyone else seemed to be having just too much fun.

Ok, I'm gonna stop rambling now. 

June 08, 2010

This is the pouch I made for the stash and stitch swap I hosted on the CQ4Newbies group.  Including myself there were four swappers.  Everyone's work was wonderful and they made some really nice pouches.  Everyone will be pleased with what they receive.

April 30, 2010

Yesterday at 10:40 pm made it six months since I last talked to my beloved Tommy. 13 minutes later made it six months since he drew his last breathe. I truly don't know how I made it or why I am still alive. I miss him so very very much and wish so much that I could be with him.

I had a lot of first in the last six months
first Halloween -- his favorite holiday
first Thanksgiving
my birthday
first Christmas
first New Year's
first Valentine's Day
first wedding anniversary -- our 7th

The last major event will be his birthday on May 30.  Of course then comes the one year anniversary of losing him. 

Maybe the second or third year will be a little easier.  Maybe I can think of him without crying or losing my breath.  Dear God, it has to be easier, just a little.

I am very grateful for the love and support of my mom and brother, my friends, both here and online, especially my best friends Allison and Lesa, and everyone of you who come and visit my blog.  I don't know what I would do without any of you.  Thank you so much for being there.

I love you and miss you so very much, my dearest darling love.

April 26, 2010

June Bead Journal Page


In February of 2005, Tommy and I went home to West Monroe for a visit.  We were living in Williamsburg, VA.  We took 1-64 south through the Monitor-Merrimac Tunnel into Norfolk and then on into Suffolk.  The weather was a little chilly but having the window down to film the trip was still tolerable. 

As we headed west toward on VA 58 going towards 85S, we approached a meadow on my side of the road.  I was still filming and we were talking.  I asked Tommy if he had any idea why the meadow was so foggy.  He had no clue.  The closer we got though, we realized it wasn't fog but SNOW!!!!  We were both surprised by this as the day was so clear and fresh.  But snow it was.  The further we drove the more accumulation there was on the trees and the road.  After a brief time, we caught up with other vehicles.  They were all driving at a safe speed in the right hand lane.  My husband grins at me and then moves into the unused, snow filled left lane....and no he never slowed down.

I quickly tightened my seatbelt and grabbed the oh shit handle.  Tommy just laughed.  Ok, so I'm a southern girl.  This was more snow than I had ever seen at one time in my life and the stuff was still coming down.  I wanted Tommy to slow down and get in the right hand lane where it was being cleared by the cars ahead of us.  He refused.  Said we were safer in the left lane.  Finally we reached an overpass where we were forced by a state trooper to get in the right lane as the left was closed for emergency vehicles coming through. Yes, there had been an accident and yes it was in the right hand lane.  Tommy reminded me of that every few minutes.  After a while all the emergency people were there and the left lane began to fill up with 18 wheelers.  They didn't slow down either.  What is it with men that they think they can control any vehicle on any road in any condition at any time? 

We finally made it 95 and decided to go south on it instead of continuing onto 85.  Good thing too cause as we listened to the radio we heard reports out of Durham and Chapel Hill that traffic was so slow some people moved mere inches in several hours.  They told of trucks trying to make it up the hills of 85 and sliding back down.  Boy was I grateful we decided on 95. 

Tommy laughed at me the whole time we were on icy roads.  I was/am not afraid to admit I was terrified.  He thought it was a blast.  I'm not sure which he enjoyed more, the weather or terrifying me.  He was a very safe driver and we were never in any danger but sheesh.

So this page is a small piece of that blizzard.

March 30, 2010

This is a picture of Violet's completed winter season to season block that I did for her.  This is for a swap on the CQForNewbies group.

March 23, 2010

May's Bead Journal Project Page

Kimball Hill
Whitefield, NH
July-October 2005
In July of 2005, Tommy got the job as Chief Engineer at Mountain View Grand Resort and Spa in Whitefield, NH.  It is a beautiful old resort that was built in 1865 by the Dodge Family.  It is in New Hampshire's White Mountains.While we were there, we lived in a two room cabin ontop of Kimball Hill.  The cabin was part of an old B and B.  It was wonderful.  There was a large meadow in front where all manner of wild animals grazed.  An old stone wall split the meadow in two.  From our front porch, Tommy could see all the way across the valley to the hotel.  He enjoyed having his morning coffee out there while talking to whoever was already at work.
We had no television.  Cable stopped about a mile from the road we lived on.  We did have high speed internet installed.   The cabin came furnished, so all we added were computer desks and a recliner.  There was no air conditioning, but just put a fan in the window and it was quite cool.  Compared to the other two rooms, the bathroom was so small, you had to come out of it just to change your mind.  We spent most of time in the bedroom, which was where the computers and my sewing area was.   
The town was so small and quaint.  It only had a blinking red light and a stop sign.  I had never been that far north or lived in a town that small.  It was wonderful and so peaceful.  Tommy had a little store that he stopped at to get cigarettes and gas.  By the time he walked in the door, they had a pack of smokes on the counter for him.  The little deli in the store made the best fried mushrooms and chicken strips.  Once they got to know you, they were so nice and friendly.
We had planned on retiring there.  Maybe not on Kimball Hill but in Whitefield.
We were there only three months.  The company that Tommy worked for owned another hotel in New Orleans.  After Katrina hit, they sent him to that property to restore it and make it able to withstand another storm of that size.  We were told it would only be 5, maybe 6 months and then we could return to Whitefield.  Unfortunately during that time, the company's CFO, who was running Mtn. View was arrested for bribery, frauding, skimming from the books and a couple of other things.  He is still in prison.  The company had to send in another general manager to take over.  He took his own staff with him, so Tommy's job was no longer available.  We were both devastated.  We still have a full storage unit up there that we have not been able to get back to.  I will one of these days soon.

March 21, 2010

Two Into One

This is my April bead journal page.  Tommy and I got married on Saturday April 19, 2003 at 3 pm in the chapel of Messiah Lutheran Church in Monroe, LA.  Reverend Dale Farley performed the ceremony.  My colors were royal blue and silver with touches of white.  My mother made my wedding dress and my very dear friend, Dorothy Windham, loaned me her gorgeous 30" string of pearls.  My brother Jeremy gave me away.  My best friend Allison was my matron of honor.  My cousin Jenie Tauber and good friend Cherry Thorne were bridesmaids.  Tommy's nephew Jeremy was his best man and my brother Jeremy was his groomsman.  We spent our wedding night at The Atrium in Monroe and our honeymoon in Hot Springs, Arkansas.

We spent the first night of our honeymoon at the historic Park Hotel.  It's behind the Arlington Hotel on the road leading to the lookout tower.  It is a beautiful old hotel.  It has no air conditioning.  There was a huge ceiling fan over the bed.  It was set to turbo speed.  Tommy turned it off at one point just to cut down on the noise a little.  We found out then why it was set so fast.  Without the sound of the fan going, you could everything in all the rooms around you as if you were actually in the room with them.  Needless to say we kept the fan going.

The bed was a matter unto itself.  The bed and the pillows were like laying on stone.  When you put your head on the pillow you kind of expected it to leave an impression.  Not on these pillows.  We joked that a pillow fight would be deadly.  Needless to say, beautiful hotel that it was, we only spent one night there.

We spent the next three nights at the Downtowner. My mom, brother and I spent Thanksgiving week there in 1997 after my dad died.  I knew we would have comfortable rooms.  They have a spa on the top floor with the mineral baths in the basement.  It was really nice and the pillows were not deadly.

Next month will be our 7th anniversary.  I am not sure that I will be able to survive it.

February 07, 2010



February 06, 2010


Yep, you heard it...or rather read it...hell is getting cooler.  Why???  The New Orleans Saints are going to the Superbowl.  And this year they won't have to use their season tickets, either.  They are actually being permitted to step onto the grass.  And not as the half time comic relief act....they actually get to play football.  Of course since I live in Louisiana, I should be a Saints fan right?  Nope, sorry to disappoint...I don't follow football at all.  But if they do win, I guess we know who might be responsible for all the snow and ice happening now.  The devil will be pulling out the longjohns tomorrow night.

I am secretly hoping they win cause Tommy's best friend, Rafal has a bet going with the crew of the Le Pavillon, the hotel he worked at with Tommy.  He still works there.  Anywho, if the Saints win, Rafal has to get a fleur de lis on his tushie with about 20 people watching.  Smart people, I wouldn't trust him to tell me the truth about getting it either.

GEAUX SAINTS!!!  (just getting into the spirit of things)

January 14, 2010

My mom was looking at my blog tonight and asked me why I did not tell everyone the names of my BJP pages.  I simply forgot.  I got so involved in memories and telling the stories behind the pages that I forgot to give their names.  So to correct that omission, here are the names of my pages.

January--The Rage of a Frozen Heart
March--Going Home

January 10, 2010


Once I started working on the first page, memories and images just started flowing.  February's page is a fall colored tree. 

From May 2004 to July 2005, we lived in Williamsburg, Virginia.  During the fall of 2004, Tommy and I drove the Blue Ridge Parkway in Virginia.  Everywhere we looked were these wonderfully colored trees.  The colors were so bright and vivid, especially with the sun hitting them.  It was so beautiful.  We drove the parkway and laughed and talked.  We would stop at various points and explore.  We started at the beginning of the parkway just off I 64 and took it down to Roanoke, where we spent the night.  The next day we visited an animal safari park and the Crystal Caves.  It was a wonderful time and the memories will last a lifetime.

In 2005, from July to early October, we lived on Kimball Hill in Whitefield, New Hampshire.  I had never been that far north before.  We rented a two room cabin that was part of an 1865 farm "complex".  Previous owners had turned the place into a bed and breakfast.  Our cabin, along with a second one, were actually across the street from the inn.  From the porch, we could see across the valley to the MountainView Grand Resort and Spa.  This was where Tommy was working as Chief Engineer.  He liked getting up early in the morning, especially on his days off, getting a cup of coffee, and sitting on the porch watching  his hotel.  He would call and talk to whomever was working and tell them that he could see the hotel from our front porch.  By the middle of September, the leaves began changing.  We could see two mountain ranges from our portch, the Green Mountains and the White Mountains.  They seemed to catch fire as the leaves changed.  The colors were so vivid and beautiful.  Neither of us had ever seen anything like it before.  (I'll post some pics when I find them).  We were so very happy there.  We always planned on returning, possibly retiring, there.  It was our own slice of heaven.


This is the Lutheran Cross (actually one of a couple by that name).  I am Lutheran.  Tommy was a non practicing Roman Catholic.  We were married in my Lutheran church and the same minister presided over Tommy's funeral.  The little cross in the middle is supposed to hang straight.  It is only attached at the top and whenever the scanner lid was closed it moved.  Caused my mom no end of frustration.  The date,  10-29-09, is when Tommy died.  Two days before his favorite holiday.  I also had this cross put on his marker.

I have two other pages in progress.  Each one is filled with memories and is helping to ease the pain somewhat.  None of them are going as planned, except maybe this one.  If things keep going this way, I may have all my pages finished by the end of the month.  I think Tommy would approve of what I've done so far. 


Here is my January BJP page.  I finished it in about 6 hours New Year's Eve.  I was missing Tommy so bad.  My heart and soul just felt like they were encased in ice, yet so full of pain and agony, anger and despair.  Death is so final but the pain and anguish of those left behind seems to be so unending.  Tommy was my soulmate, the other half of myself.  His death has left me lost, alone, and frozen in timeless pain forever.

January 06, 2010


I have joined the Beaded Journal Project for 2010.  Tommy and I had been talking about my doing it and him designing some of the pictures for me to bead.  Now I am using the project as a way to work through my grief and remember all the wonderful memories we made together.  I had several images chosen to work for different months depending on what happened within that month..for example our wedding anniversary in April or his birthday in May.  I was planning on doing an outline of each of the different states we lived in...things like that.  Once I got started though, things have taken on a life of their own.  I actually have the first three pages done.  I am really quite happy with them.  The fourth page is in progress and also going quite well.  Of course, only one so far has gone as planned...but then aren't plans made to be broken or changed or whatever?  I will post pics soon.  Don't want to upset anyone by having so much done yet.  It has just taken on a life of its own and when I'm working it just seems ot come pouring out.

January 01, 2010

Happy 2010 to everyone.  I hope everyone has a wonderful and creative year.  I refuse to say this year can't be any worse than last year....cause it always happens.  Although what could be worse than losing Tommy I truly don't know.  It has been 9 weeks now and the pain doesn't seem to be going anywhere.

We had one heck of a scare here yesterday.  I took my pups out in the backyard for their hourly constitutionals.  I told my mom I was doing this.  Her German Shepard Lady and my Zoe DO NOT get along at all.  It was raining and so cold out.  My children hurried up and did what they needed to do and then we came back in.  I didn't realize that my mom had fallen asleep and didn't hear me.  We came in the back door and Lady was immediately on Zoe.  Had her teeth buried in the scruff of her neck and was holding her off the ground shaking her.  It took my brother, Jeremy, at least 2 minutes to get Lady's teeth out of Zoe.  Unfortunately I wasn't a big help...I was freaking out.  Finally Lady let go.  My mom got Zoe into my room and Lady was put in Mom's room.  We got really lucky...really lucky with Zoe....there were no puncture wounds and other than being scared witless, she is okay.  My brother on the other hand, ended up with punctures on each finger of his right hand.  Of course being the adult male that he is, he refused to let anyone take care of him but himself.  This morning everyone is okay.  Zoe is now skiddish about leaving the bedroom.  Zax has not left his sissy once.  He is constantly by her side, licking the area Lady got ahold of.  What a way to end the worst year of my life.

The pups and I spent the rest of the evening cuddling under a blanket in my recliner watching the Thin Man marathon on TCM.  Tommy and I loved the series.  He thought Asta (the dog) was the best character in the story.