18 December 2012

Make a Wish





Each morning for the last couple of days, I wiped away tears as I watched the morning news.  The news is starting to cover the stories of the CT shooting victims - little children with big hopes and even bigger personalities.  They cover stories stories of kind people who offered support and love for the grieving families...stories of a people, of a nation who find the slaughter of innocent lives unacceptable.  But what is the answer?  How can we protect our nation's children?  I wish that this will never happen again, but we live in a fallen world...and violence will continue until my savior returns.

With the children who lost their lives weighing so heavily on my mind, I can't help but think about the hundreds of thousands of children in foster care...children who are "lost" and waiting for their family.  I mean that literally...there were 400,000 children in foster care in 2011.  What about these children?  Can't we help them? So many of these children are older...they are passed over for families that want  babies.   God has placed the desire to help those children on our hearts.  We want so badly to help....Our home isn't perfect and tends towards the messy, and we eat frozen pizza at least twice a week.   My little dog licks faces, and Gary drools and farts.  The laundry and dishes occasionally pile up... BUT we don't have to be perfect to be foster or adoptive parents.  AdoptUSkids has a great ad campaign about that. So in addition to the families that lost children, I'll also pray for the children that haven't found their families.







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16 December 2012

Healing and Humanity

"For it is good to be children sometimes, and never better than at Christmas, when its mighty Founder was a child Himself" - Charles Dickens A Christmas Carol

As Christmas is fast approaching, we remember that God loved the world so much that he sent his only son to die for our sins. Jesus came into the world as a wee baby, innocent and helpless.  And what a world to be born into...a world where sin and corruption and fouled God's creation which he deemed "good."  My heart is broken for the tragedy that occurred on Friday.   BUT I remember God's word...that God loves the little children.  He said to let the children come to him...for the kingdom of heaven belongs to such as these (Matthew 12:14).  I hope and pray for the families of those 20 little children and 6 adults.  I hope and pray that those 26 people are celebrating Christ's birth at his side in heaven. 

13 December 2012

Application to Change Lives


Here's the picture we took to include in our application to Social Services to begin fostering children.  It's a mission that I feel God has called us to, and I couldn't be more excited.  You'll notice in the picture that the dogs are really happy too!  This is just the first step in a long process of home studies, interviews, and classes...and there's no guarantee that we'll even be approved.   Even if we aren't approved this time, we'll still keep trying because we both strongly feel this is a calling.  After the approval process and training is finished, we'd like to start with respite care fostering.   That means we provide a short term break to foster parents (example: watching their foster kids over the weekend).   We want to go through the full process because we want to be ready to take on a long term fostering assignment just in case a good match comes up.  
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18 November 2012

The Weekend Before Thanksgiving

This year, we won't be able to make to Arkansas to celebrate Thanksgiving.  Some of my family came to visit us instead.   We really enjoyed our time together!  We ate at our favorite Thai restaurant (Bangkok Gardens), learned a new game, went shopping in Amish-town, drank 5 bottles of Jeanette Rouge (from Les Bourgeois), and decorated for Christmas.  I'm so sad everyone will be gone by tomorrow, and we'll go back to the daily grind.  I'm grateful for my job, but I miss my family.

 
 
 


Peace and Love, y'all.

16 November 2012

Travel Buddy Bear "Frank" - Vaccinated and ready to go!


I received this little patient in the mail yesterday.  He's from a girl in New York.  I'm making sure he stays healthy on his travels!

 
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11 November 2012

Weekend activities and Sunday Sketches

I found a new blog hop called Sunday Sketches hosted at Blue Chair Diary Illustrations.  I added a picture link button thingy on the side bar :) Click it to play too!  Scroll to the bottom of this post for my watercolor sketches :)

After work on Saturday, we spent some time with some good friends.  Chase smoked us all at a game of miniature golf, then we ate at an authentic Japanese-Korean bbq, and watched James Bond.  At the restaurant, I ate a bone-in pork and potato stew (with a name I can't pronounce).  I admit I didn't much care for the bone in portion since apparently i was eating epaxial muscles of a pig and the vertebrae were floating in my soup.   However, the flavor of the soup was really good.  If I could have just gotten past the vertebrae part, it would have been really good.    


Just for kicks and giggles here's my desk today.  I've been enjoying the cold and rainy afternoon by painting at my desk.   I only stuck my paint brush in the hot cocoa by accident once.  


I finished 2 cards for my own swaps and 4 parakeets :)

The Painted Haiku Swap

Watercolor Scenes of Winter

Pretty bird swap (parakeets)
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07 November 2012

WOYWW 179

Play along at http://stamping-ground.blogspot.com/.   Julia, thank you so much for hosting!  I enjoy this little blog hop so much :)


Here's my desk this week.  It's got a finished painting (sorta finished).  I don't like the way the grass turned out...so I might do it again!  On my computer is source pictures for ATCs I want to do today :) I'm hosting 3 swaps now that I have to make cards for: WC Animals, WC Scenes of Winter, and the Painted Haiku.


Thanks for looking!
 
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30 October 2012

WOYWW! Happy Halloween!


It's WOYWW!  Hooray!  Play at Julia's blog http://stamping-ground.blogspot.com/.  

So I finally (after 3 years) finished Gary's costume!  He's a greyhound bus of course!  This was my craft project for the week :)  I am a greyhound bus driver.   Ruby is jealous that she doesn't have a costume...maybe next year, Ruby.  I won't be able to comment on too many desks this week as I have to go have the dentist fill some cavities.  Boo!


Happy Halloween and WOYWW!






29 October 2012

Watercolor Landscapes with a Water Feature

So here are my submissions for a "fat book" swap on ATCsforALL.   These are 4x4" on rough watercolor paper.  It's the first time I tried using the handmade 320gsm, recycled cotton rag paper from Art Outfitters. At least, I think that's what I used...I lost the label for the paper!  I liked the end result a lot, but I got frustrated at first because it felt like I had to pound the pigment (Sakura koi watercolors)  in with a TON of water.  The outlines were done with micron pen.  Have I mentioned lately how much I love, love, love my Sakura Koi Pocket Field Sketch Box watercolors?  Seriously, this little box is perfect for my ATCs and I just love the colors.   If they made a giant version of this little box, I'd purchase it in a heart beat.  I've found that I like the pans of watercolors better than the tubes.  Actually I love all of Sakura's products that I've tried...the watercolors, micron markers, gelly roll pens, souffle pens... Enough rambling!  Here are my fat pages:

This is a painting of sunset at Eagle Bluffs.  Eagle bluffs is one of the most beautiful places I've ever seen.  Hubby and I try to go at least once a month to just soak the peace and quiet.

This is the Lower Falls in the Grand Canyon of Yellowstone (I think). 

This is from a picture I took in the Grand Tetons

Driving back to Yellowstone after visiting the Grand Tetons...there was a stream with a mirror like reflection right at dusk.  It was so serene. 


Peace and Love, y'all!
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23 October 2012

WOYWW #177

It's WOYWW!  Hooray!  Play at Julia's blog http://stamping-ground.blogspot.com/



So I wish I had some fabulous, artistic project on my desk.   But I don't.  So instead...here's a picture of fabulous cards I've recieved in the past week or so from others.




Here's my desk!   It's got stuff for swapping and mailing out ATCs, a favorite hymn of mine with a fall leaf on top, mcdonald's monopoly pieces (we didn't win), and my watercolors.  Maybe tomorrow I can do some painting!
 




Speaking of feeling grateful...  Hubby and I are almost back to normal after the car accident a couple of weeks ago.  The insurance declared our car (pictures are couple posts ago) a total loss and cut us a check.  Luckily we were able to find a suitable replacement vehicle in our price range. 

So here it is.... our new (ie, used and hail damaged) HHR!   Hopefully the dogs will really love riding in the cargo area.  AND...hopefully we'll have this car when we start our family! 



Peace and Love, y'all!
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14 October 2012

Good bye Weekend, hello Monday

Oh boy.  Tomorrow is the dreaded Monday.  Hopefully this will be a great week, and I'll be able to really and truly help some animals (and their connected people).    Last week was rough.  I wish I could simply treat animals for free, but I can't and expect to stay in business to continue to help animals.  *sigh* 


This weekend we didn't get to go to the Razorback game as planned, but we caught up on laundry and sleep.  AND I did cards for a swap.  I really didn't have much interest in partcipating in the Cthulhu Madness swap, but when I saw only 2 people had signed up I had to sign up.  I've totally been there as a host when you're wondering whether you'll have enough members to actually swap cards.  As long as the other 2 players send in cards and the host makes cards too, everyone who plays will get cards from 3 different artists.  I'd say my Cthulhu's aren't spreading madness and mayhem, but they are simply enjoying their free time away from the daily grind.  



In other news, I'm almost back to normal after the car accident.  Chase is still sore, but he's going back to the doctor tomorrow.  I figure he had a concussion that night, and it's going to take some time for him to bounce back to normal.  It doesn't help that both of us are constantly stressed at work.  I love being a veterinarian, but letting owners take their animals out of my clinic when they need treatment is so hard.  So far the best remedy has been an old Methodist hymnal I checked out from the library.  As I crank out the familiar tunes on the piano, God speaks to my heart.  There's a bigger picture, and someday we'll be in a place where there's no more suffering and pain...and we'll all be satisfied with work.


Peace and love, y'all!
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10 October 2012

WOYWW - Bittersweet reflections


Here is my desk this Wednesday.  It's got a massive stack of envelopes I need to take to the post office today.   As far as art goes...not much going on this week..to many errands to take care of.  One thing that is new on my desk (or windowsill rather) is the little container of catnip.   Some clients at work bought it for their terminally ill kitty cat. They gave it to me after the cat passed on.   I really loved the cat and the owners. It was one of those cases that I will carry in my heart for the rest of my life. 



I was going to leave it at work to help other cats but it failed to flourish there.  So I decided to take it home and nourish it so I can use it to help other kitty patients :)



So what are all the errands keeping me from art this week? Well last Friday we picked up anther couple in our car to go play a round of miniature golf.   As we were stopped at a stop sign, another vehicle smashed into our car.  Our car is toast, but we all checked out at the ER with only sprained neck and back muscles.  So that's a blessing.  The driver of the other vehicle was drunk.  So now I have to get the insurance companies to work together to pay for the medical bills, provide a rental car until we can purchase a vehicle, and pay us the cost of my husband's totaled car.  YUCK!  I really just want it all to be over so we can move on with our normal lives!  There's a picture of car in the previous post for the curious.

Thanks for visiting!!


Peace and love, y'all!


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07 October 2012

Count your many blessings. Name them one by one.

I can remember the sound of glass breaking, metal and plastic bending and breaking, my own voice screaming. I remember lights and someone yelling getting out of the car; gasoline was pouring from our car.  We all got out without assistance - relatively uninjured (#1).  The other driver was also relatively uninjured (#2).   Chase's car....well...it's totalled, but the trunk was crunched instead of the cabin (#4).  If our car hadn't been stopped at that stop sign, the car going through the intersection would have been t-boned.  So maybe we prevented a fatal accident (#5).  God alone knows.  All the people who saw the accident stopped and made sure we were ok...and stayed to give testimony against the driver that hit us (#6).  They were all so nice and supportive!  The gasoline and other fluids were all cleaned up so they don't combust or poison little animals (#6).  The other driver was found to be drunk, and the police arrested her (#7).  She couldn't even walk a straight line.  While she may not considered getting arrested as a blessing, sometimes God puts in road blocks (Chase's car with 4 passengers in this case) so we don't continue down the path of destruction we're on.   He deliberately lets us reap the painful consequences of our sin so we recognize it, repent, and seek His forgiveness.  A tow truck moved our car off the road and gave us time to clean it of our stuff which was amazingly undamaged (even Chase's laptop in the trunk) (#8).  One of Beth's friends came to pick us up (#8) and take us to David's car.  Beth drove the 4 of us to the ER, where the doctor examined us.- mild muscle strains and minor lacerations - nothing broken (#9).  He said we'll be really sore for the upcoming week.  After being released at midnight, we finally got dinner and went home.  The following morning, we realized Chase's backpack (w/ laptop was missing).  We went back to check the scene of the accident, and Chase's backpack, jacket, and bible were all sitting there unharmed (#10).




So what can I say?  We're down 1 car, but we're alive and well.  We're just a bit sore, but not seriously injured.  It served a sobering reminder - life is fragile.  I thank God that everything has worked out.  I'm sure He'll provide what we need, and I pray that the other driver will repent and let God do some healing work in her life. 


Peace and Love, y'all!
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25 September 2012

WOYWW

Happy WOYWW!  Play along at http://stamping-ground.blogspot.com/


First of all...look what is NOT in my house!  Yes...we were successful at capturing that little critter live and releasing it 2 miles from my house.   You know...it doesn't look so villainous once it's safely captured.  It just looks scared.  Whatever...I 'm just glad he's back in the great outdoors.  We're leaving the live traps up for now, but I haven't had any other sightings of a rodent.

So here's my desk this week!  Very boring.   I've got a stack of birthday cards (thanks folks!), ATCs that were host gifts for my swaps, envelopes ready for me to process (also for my swaps), a stack of blank watercolor ATCs, and no works in progress.   I probably won't be able to make many desks this week because I have to work!  My apologies ahead of time, but I'll do what I can.


Peace and Love, y'all!
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18 September 2012

WOYWW - birthdays and mice

Happy WOYWW!  Head on over to the blog of our lovely host, Julia, at http://stamping-ground.blogspot.com/ to find out what this is all about.


Here's my workspace this week...  It's clean and orderly.  I seemed to have used up all my creative energy last week.    The previous post has some of the ATCs I finished last week :) 








So what's taking all my creative energy this week?  Well, I discovered I have an unwanted house guest yesterday as I saw a small critter run along a wall.   Yup... I have a mouse in the house.   My husband and I are new homeowners and have been here for just a couple of months.   I'm not handling the thought of a mouse very well.   I first saw it while putting on my shoes Monday morning.  That night I had invited another couple over for dinner.  As we were sitting and drinking that bottle of wine that was on my desk last week...the MOUSE RAN ACROSS MY KITCHEN FLOOR...  I was so mortified!  However, my friend is also a veterinarian (a lab animal one at that) so we cornered the little mousey behind a bookshelf.  We had someone move the bookshelf while we were poised to capture the little guy with mixing bowls.  Well...we failed.  Round bowls...square bookshelf...just didn't work out.

As a veterinarian, the list of diseases mice can potentially carry to my family (and my chinchilla and guinea pigs) is running through my brain constantly.  It's pooping out its salmonella and peeing leptospira wherever it goes...i'm just sure of it. Not to mention hantavirus, lymphocytic chorio-meningitis, tularemia..oh..and not to mention rodent fleas (ok...more like rat fleas) can carry black death (yersinia pestis...yeah..so that's probably not this far east...).  So my dogs all got an extra dose of frontline plus this month on top of their advantage multi.  I fully aknowledge that I might be just a little paranoid...and it's not likely our little house guest is carrying all of those diseases, but I still want him out of my house!  My husband and I have set up live traps in hopes we can catch and release...but we'll use deadly force (ie, snap traps...I won't use poisons) if necessary!

In other news...today is my birthday!  All I want this year is the mouse to be caught and released!



Peace and love, y'all!

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15 September 2012

Creative marathon

Here are the results to this week's ATC spree!  I completed cards for 3 swaps.



Gaze Into My Crystal Ball

Wild, wonderful watermelons! 

Art Nouveau Women


I think they turned out ok.  Of course, I'm always looking to improve my skill.

Peace and love, y'all!
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11 September 2012

WOYWW

Happy WOYWW!  Julia's blog is where you play! 

Here's my desk this week.  I'm working on a card in the style of art nouveau for a swap I might sign up for (if I can finish the cards).   It's been a lot of fun so far. I'm hoping to finish it today since I'm off today!  Hoorah for having a day off in the middle of the week!   Also, I'd like to complete cards for a whole bunch of swaps: flower and butterflies, sunflowers and black birds, me and my crystal ball, wild watermelon, whimsy dogs.... We'll see how far I get tomorrow!  If you visited last week, you can see the inky backgrounds have been gessoed and stamped..and are ready for a subject...not sure what yet.  In the top middlish portion of my desk there is a bottle of wine.  I was thinking about painting it for a still life swap, but I'll probably drink it before I get around to it.  Oh well :)


Thanks for stoping by!  All these ATC swaps are over at ATCsforALL.com.  I'm Ethereal_sheep over there if you want to start doing ATCs...I'd be happy to help you get addicted...er...start trading ATCs!


Mid day update on my mini-ATC-athon:

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Here's what I have done by 3:00pm.  The watermelon swap is finished, 2 to go on the Art Nouvaeu...the 4 cards for all the other swaps too.

Peace and love, y'all!
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09 September 2012

Beautiful weekend

Fall was in the air this weekend. There was a cool, crisp breeze that flowed through our open windows. We mowed the lawn, weeded all the flower beds, and got our yard looking respectable. Then we spent our Saturday afternoon watching the sunset at the local winery.

The weather couldn't have been any more beautiful as we sat sipping our wine on the bluffs overlooking the Missouri river.



I felt inspired to finish cards for the swaps I'm hosting.   Colorful Hot Air Balloons and Watercolor Still Lifes :)

Sunday was our day to help at church on the hospitality team.  We loaded the back seat with 50 dozen donuts or so by 7 am and set up the breakfast table.  Then I made my grocery list, and baked a cake...all before noon! 



This evening we had community group.  This week we discussed the first chapter of Tim Keller's The Meaning of Marriage... which was ironically what was covered in the sermon this morning.  I guess we all need a reminder that marriage is much deeper than 2 people coming together for self-gratification.  Marriage is a sacred commitment between 2 imperfect people.  Through marriage, God teaches couples many lessons...in patience, the meaning of true love, and unity.  So far the book has been great, and the discussion even better.  

Peace and Love, y'all.  It's back to the daily grind tomorrow!


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