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Sunday, May 10, 2009

It's been more than 2 months since my last blog entry, but I'm still alive and kickin'

Sadly, I just haven't managed to keep up with my blog very well for the past couple of months but everything is fine, just pretty busy lately. I have been on "semi-retired" status (by choice) at my job as an RN at a local Family Practice clinic for over a year but agreed to fill in for one of my coworkers while she was on maternity leave . Needless to say, that has left things rather crazy for me. I am now coming up on the "light at the end of the tunnel" as my coworker will be back soon..thank goodness! However, this experience has reminded me of how challenging it is to manage a family and a stamping business (even though mine is a part time business!) while working full time in another job. WOW! Hats off to those of you who manage to do it and make it seem so effortless. I really wonder how I managed to work full time and be a mom for all those years when I was an active duty Navy nurse with three young kids and a deploying spouse. I guess I just didn't know any better? ha!

While I have been busy at work I have also managed to keep up with stamping and I actually do have a few samples to share with you. But first, a photo of a very significant family event from this past week-end. We traveled from our home in O'Fallon, IL (the metro east St. Louis area) all the way up to beautiful downtown Kirkville, MO this week-end for my son's graduation from Truman State University. Ok, so it's not really that far...but we did spend the night rather than try to drive up and back plus fit in all of the graduation festivities in one short day. Our middlest son, Josh was the proud graduate and he was also commissioned into the U.S. Army the same day. Yes, we are very proud parents! For some crazy reason I only downloaded the cap and gown photos on my desktop and am working on my laptop right now so here is a photo of our graduate in his Army uniform. Next time I'll post the cap and gown photo.

My husband and I are both retired Navy so Mike was able to administer the commissioning "oath" to Josh as he did for our oldest son, Matt when he was commissioned into the Air Force in 2005...Mike and Josh both looked great in their uniforms. Mike is the one with the moustache and Josh is our new Army Lieutenant. Our oldest son, Matt (an Air Force fighter pilot) wasn't able to join us for the event as he is currently stationed in Korea but he was there in spirit and was able to phone in congrats to the graduate on his big day. And we are now truly a "tri-service" family!

The photo to the right is me with my handsome husband who still looks rather snappy in his uniform despite being retired since 2005. I only wish that I could say the same about me! I have put on more than a few pounds and there is no way I could ever hope to get my skirt to zip up nor my jacket to button. Shoot, I wouldn't want to put on the dress shoes with heels even if they still fit!

So, thanks for sharing our big week-end with me and thanks also for "tuning in" again after a long absence from posting. And finally, as promised, here is a picture of a "faux quilt" card I put together for a recent class. For a change, I actually designed this myself rather than casing it from another more talented stamper! I can't imagine ever having the time or patience to actually create a real quilt however I love this style of card and am working on converting more beginner quilt patterns into card format for a future class. You may notice that I have finally given up on trying to apply a professionally computer done watermark and have gone with what works most easily for me...a stamped watermark in the photo with the picture! I got that idea from another demonstrator friend, Lee Conrey and I must say she is absolutely brilliant and has certainly made my life considerable easier with that brainstorm idea.

This card is based on a beginner quilt pattern I found called "Whirling Geese" which is not something I had ever seen before but looked easily duplicated with squares and layers. I managed to work it out so the squares were all done with punches which almost seemed like cheating but hey, it worked for me! Of course, it also needed just a little bit of stamping to make it truly a stamping project so I added a stamped center panel and a stamped sentiment at the bottom of the card. It's hard (probably impossible!) to tell from the photo but I also ran the card base thru the Sizzix Texturz plate to apply a small dot embossed pattern on it just to add some texture and make it look really quilted. My class included 5 other cards so I will show you some of those later...for now it's past my bedtime and tomorrow brings another busy week ahead.

Happy Mother's Day to all of you wonderful mothers out there. Even though I am in my 50's with three grown (or nearly grown children), I am blessed to still be able to call my own dear Mom and wish her a Happy Mother's Day. And yes, I did manage to send her a hand stamped card as well! ;-)


Twila said...

Hi Jan, glad to see you are still here! My goodness what a wonderful family! Thank you to you and your family for serving our country! Happy Mother's Day!

June Annand said...

Congrats to your son with his graduation! TFS the lovely pic with you and your DH. I love your faux quilt card - the layout is wonderful and your card really showcases that beautiful quilt pattern. Gorgeous!

Sara Mattson-Blume said...

Neat card! I am so glad you are back to posting!

Stampndragon said...

I have 2 sons that have both enlisted into the Army, Jacob, 19 enlisted in Sept. 2008 and his older brother George, 26 enlisted in Feb. 2009. My husband is also retired Navy and he too gove the boys their oath - that made it very special. Pics on my blog.

Stampndragon said...

Forgot to mention - I was an Air Force Brat. My dad served 28 years in the AF. I know you are as proud of your boys as we are of ours. God Bless them and keep them safe.
Cindy Ferenz

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