Monthly Archives: December 2010

“Pearl Essence” by Pati

Jewelry Set #1

I’m so proud of Pati and the work she has done on her jewelry creations.

This is one set she made for Maureen and I’ll have the other set up in the next photo, then some close ups of these items.

I am totally impressed by what Pati has created.  She is the one that loves jewelry between us.  I can’t wear it because I have a rather itchy and nasty reaction to the nickle content in the metals used so I avoid it all together.

Jewelry Set #2

You may  not realize there is a difference in these two sets.  It is in the chandelier earrings.  One set has five hangy down things while this set only has three.

Still these are beautiful pieces and I hope Maureen and her Mom are happy with their jewelry.

Pati put magnetic closures on the bracelet and necklace to make it easier for Maureen’s Mom to put them on and take them off.

I learned quite a bit about jewelry making since Pati has been here.  There are some teensy tiny little circle things I can barely see.  They are called “Crimps” and she squeezed them down tight to affix the wire through the magnetic clip loops and the Crimp.  I felt so sorry for her trying to thread the wire through those bitty things.  I remembered Joe has a magnefying head gear thing.  I brought it out and showed Pati how to tighten it to fit her head.  I have to remember to get it back to Joe’s head size or he will holler “What “Pin Head” has been using my magnifiers?

Earring Set #2

This is the second pair of earrings in the set.  The one with three hangy down things.

Earring Set #1

This is the earring set #1 with the five hangy down things.

I watched Pati put some of this together and marveled at how she worked with the wire and a pair of jeweler’s pliers to create all this.

To hear her sharp intake of breath and then to hear her say “Someone actually likes my stuff and wants to buy it?” with total incredulity in her voice was awesome.  Then to have her at my kitchen table and enjoy herself in the construction of this beauty was awesome.

Maureen, cookies or pumpkin bread, as totally delicious as they are, can’t compare with the soul stirring feeling I had while watching Pati take flight at your behest.  I am deeply grateful to you for sparking Pati’s creativity as you did.  I think, truly, it is I that should send you the cookies or something equally as wonderful to Thank You.

Monday – yesterday – I had to go to the bank before running other errands, including shipping out Maureen’s jewelry.  The Branch Manager of my bank was my “teller”.  I asked if he were ready for Christmas.  After a couple minutes of telling me of his family coming for everywhere to celebrate the first Christmas of his new daughter, he proceeded to tell me that he has yet to purchase something for his wife.  I sent Pati back out to my car to bring in her jewelry.  When she came back in I opened the boxes and told him that my sister makes jewelry.  I then asked if he would be interested in purchasing a set for his wife.  He AGREED.  He commissioned a necklace and bracelet made exactly the same as Maureen’s.  His wife can’t wear earrings so he declined on those.

Maureen, you have truly blessed me and I appreciate you so much Girlfriend.

Well, our Road Warriors are home.  They arrived safely at Dallas/Ft. Worth, TX airport.  Pati and I met them there and brought them home.  After a trip to IKEA so Pati and Les could be fully awed by the store then we headed home.

After some kind of iffy moments I think Pati and Les will be going home to their family for Christmas.  One more night with us before they leave and head for home for a few days.  Joe will be here with me for Christmas before he and Les head back out on the roads.  They will have some down time and Pati will be able to finally see her home.  She is so homesick and really wants to be there with her family.  I can’t say that I blame her either.  I know what it feels like to want to be home.

Okay, I have things I have to do tomorrow.  Catch up on all my emails, and my YouTube subscribers.  Shamefully I have neglected them far too long.  My website is still undergoing getting the “kinks” worked out of it.  I’m so glad that is up and mostly working.  After Christmas and when I’m back to being home by myself I will tackle my paperwork once again.  This time I will be working in my craft room and cranking things out there also.  Sort of get myself back on track.

Shelly, Lynn.  You two in the snow and cold temperatures.  Both of you have a warm and safe Christmas.  Maureen, down in the warmer climes, I hope you and your family have a wonderful and safe Christmas also.  Nancy…are you still up to your knees in snow?  You and your family have a wonderful and safe Christmas.  Jann, I’m praying and wishing that you and Royce will have the best Christmas you’ve had in several years now that Royce has a working kidney.  You two be safe and Joe says “Hi Back” to Royce.  Shar, way down under in the summer months with Christmas.  I wish you and your family to have a safe and wonderful Christmas as well.  Indira, over in the tropical part of our world with your two little ones.  I wish you and your family a wonderful Christmas, too.


Web Site Is Up

Man, my head hurts from all the banging on the desktop I’ve been doing 😦  Well, not really but it should be.

Check out my new website – Message In A Fold.

There are some glitches in it that I’ll be working to correct over the next couple days.  Not all pages have the “Back”, “Next”, “Home”, and “Top” buttons active.  Some pages just have the links but no buttons.

I’ve created this website for “Newbie’s” so most of the information will be stuff you already know…..Shelly, Lynn, Maureen, Jann, and Nancy.  I still have to add the “Inks” in the “Glossary” section and probably a few more things.  But I have to get the buttons working and find out where my “Join My Team” page went.  It bailed on me somewhere. Also, there are a couple of other pages that have bailed on me.  The buttons across the top for “Scrapbook Layouts” and “Creating Cards” you will get messages they don’t exist.

You can click around and check it out.  Let me know what you think.  I’m sure you will think of something I’ve missed so I can add it to my list.

I still have to take my Final Exam for this “Creating Web Pages” class.  Think I will do well on it.

Pati and I spent all morning going around to the two bead stores in town.  We hit Big Lots, Hobby Lobby, Tuesday Morning, and Michaels.  She finally found stuff she wants to work with for the items Maureen has “Commissioned To Be Created” 🙂  She’s off on her own now going back to Wal-Mart and maybe Micheals for a couple things she forgot to get.  Time for her to get out and wonder around our town unaided.

Joe and Les will be delivering in Romulus, Michigan tonight.  They picked up two car hauler tractor trailers on Wednesday in Fort Worth, Texas and are delivering them in Romulus.  They will fly out of Romulus tomorrow morning and be in Dallas, Texas , about 10 a.m. tomorrow, to do this all over again.  Joe would much rather be the pilot than a passenger (although he’s never driven one of those huge passenger planes) so he’s not looking forward to getting on the airplane.  As far as I know, this is Les’ first airplane ride so he is “Stoked” about flying.  God Speed to both of our men and prayers for their safety are ongoing.

Pati is excited.  She’ll get to see her ‘Sweetheart” tomorrow night before our “Road Warriors” get back on the road.  Both will be home in time for Christmas.  Joe has more turkey and dressing planned for the days feasting so he will be in the kitchen on Christmas day.  If Pati and Les will be here then, she will get to help him out in the kitchen if she wants to.

It is such a thrill listening to her talk about what she can do in jewelry making.  Some doors have banged open and others are ajar for her.  Wheels are spinning in her head and I get to watch it all happen.  Yippee Skippy!!

Everyone have a great weekend.  I’ll be spending mine catching up on all the emails I’ve neglected, new YouTube subscribers, and checking on Facebook to see how my Arizona daughter, Carissa, or as I call her “Little Mommy” is doing.  Plus getting my website fixed.

Right now….I have no plans on taking on that kind of a task again anytime soon in the near future.  I’m happy with what I’ve learned but what a chore that has been!!!  Satisfying?  Yes.  Difficult?  Yes.  Worth the $79 for the class?  Yes.  Would I recommend this class to anyone else?  Yes, I would.

Okay, off to get some adjustments made before I get really “googly eyed”.

Pati’s Posh Designs

I’m so excited, I can hardly contain myself.  I’ll get bopped in the head before she leaves here, but until then I’m going to BRAG!!

FIRST though.  Can you find Tweety?

Where's Tweety?

As you can see, my “Day Job” junk has not been put away yet.  And the big red blob.  That is our Christmas tree that has not been put up.  Priorities, I guess.

Suzy Homemaker I am not, besides I’ll just have to take it down again in a week or two.  Yes, I know – boo  hoo.  And, no I don’t want any cheese with this “whine” thank you.

Okay, on to what this post is all about.  I’ve been relentless in finding out what Pati is interested in.  She’s going to be here for several more days, more than actually planned, and it can get dead boring when you are visiting and have nothing to do with your time.  At least it is for me anyway.

She has talked about making bracelets before, and she’s talked about quilts, and she’s also mentioned plastic canvas.  I’ve drug her skinny butt to Hancock Fabrics in search of quilting fabrics.  She was not ready to make quilts just yet.  I’ve drug her to Hobby Lobby in search of plastic canvas supplies and instruction booklets.  What’s going on with the plastic canvas stuff.  No books, nothing.  Some of the plastic stuff, very little in the way of yarns, not much of anything.

Today I drug her to Michaels in search of plastic canvas stuff.  She took a side trip through the bead and charm section and stayed there for quite a while.  Torn between doing beadwork and plastic canvas, we went ahead and looked around the store for stuff for her to do.  She found a beginner’s bead set with a tool and everything for under $20.  It was a little difficult getting her to actually choose the set and take it home with her.

Poor Sis, she had to endure my pushy and bullying self for a while.  She even told me to “shut up” once or twice.  She did agree to get the bead set.  Once we got it home and she tinkered around for awhile I could hear the excitement begin to build at the dining room table.  I HAVE to share this all with you.  I’m so proud of her!!!

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Glitter Everywhere!


Tweety trying to stay clear of the glitter

I brought several stamp sets, tools, supplies, and paper out of my room and brought it all into the kitchen/dining room area.  With all the moving around Tweety thought she would be safest near my kitchen sink and out of the way of rolling chairs and feet.

She did come to investigate a couple times and had the wheels of either my chair or Pati’s run into her once or twice so she retreated to her safety zone.

Tweety would not stay still long enough, after all the work was done, so I could get a picture of the sparkling tip of her nose.  She had a bit on her back by the time it was all said and done.


Cutting the paper

A year ago I sent a bunch of paper crafting supplies to Pati, one of these paper trimmers was included in the stuff.  She had been trying to use it but had very  little success.

So best to start at the beginning and get her a good understanding with this one so she could, eventually, feel better about using the one she has at home.

Like a good house guest, she quietly agreed to make some cards.  Her “yes” was very timid and her heart was not really in it.  She had agreed to make one card.

She had NOT agreed with the camera so I’ve taken pictures of her working is why you won’t see much of her.


Scoring the paper

Her next step was to score the paper.  Her anxiety level was increasing and I could hear it in her voice.  Getting through the first one had her extremely concerned about doing it wrong.  When she had to do the second one she had a bit more confidence in what she was doing.

Still, being the good house guest she was going with the program and, I think, secretly dreading what was coming next.

I went over the measurements with her on the 8-1/2 x 11 paper, turning the 11 inch side  horizontally in the trimmer and cutting it at 5-1/2 then scoring the two pieces at 4-1/4 to get her card bases made.  I think she had “bailing” in mind about now but had no where to go.


Creasing the scored fold

Her next step was to put a good crease in the fold at the score she had made.

Poor Sis  had gone from bouts of being quiet to some anxiety filled words.  She asked if she were doing it right, at least once, and I reassured her she was.

This being the first step in it all I could see her eyes dart to the rubber stamp boxes, markers, inks, and other tools.  She had a feeling this was only going to get worse as time went on.

I felt sorry for her being a bit skittish…but not sorry enough to put a stop to it all 🙂


The stamping begins

The stamp set that had caught her eye was “Big On Christmas”.   It was the ONLY stamp set that had three in the box, the rest I had brought out had five or more.

I told her to cut some white paper at 2-1/2″ for her stamping lesson.  As with any new stamper, me included, she was not sure how much ink had to be on the stamp and exactly how to get it on there.  I  walked her through it all…after I had her cut another length of 2-1/2″ paper.  I had her go through the “What NOT to do” things of mashing the ink pad too hard and rocking it on the stamp and then rocking the stamp on the paper.  She would then actually see what I was telling her.   One thing I’ve learned about my Sis is she and I, both, are visual learners.  You can talk at us all day long but have better and quicker results if you just show us.  As you can see, she had a good image to work with.

The next hurdle was coloring in with the marker pens.  One step at a time.  Big goofs and we turn the paper over and start over.  Little goofs will be “artistic license” and let them be.


Glitter - Yippee!

Pati’s entire demeanor changed when she got to apply the glitter.  She was totally stoked and excited about that bit.  The excitement was in her voice even.

It was so cute listening to her exclaim the virtues of glitter.  I think she was beginning to come around.  I think.

Nearing the end of creating this first card she was ready to be finished with it all.  She even told me that.  So I told her it was alright, she could stop at that one.  Just because it is MY passion doesn’t mean I have to be a full out zealot and work to convert her to it.


Lace edge punch

Pati braved through it all.  The next was to add a border punch in the mix.  Showing her and teaching her how to use it, I could see the panic begin to rise in her eyes.

She did stay and have a go at that frightful implement.  Many times she has told me of her love of lace and glitter so I was going to give her a chance to have both of them in her card making experience.

Seeing the fear leave her face and hearing the excitement as she was successful in working the punch was well worth the time I took to get her comfortable with all this new stuff.


Pati's first card

Ta-daaaaa.  This is Pati’s first card EVER using rubber stamps and a border punch!

I love this card she made.  I do have to admit, she got wounded in the process of making this card because I did not think ahead.

I had the paper piercing tool for her to poke holes in the Christmas tree image where the ornaments were little circles.  Not thinking I handed her the piercing tool and she poked it through and stabbed herself.

I had to go round up my mouse pad and make this part of it less painful to her.  I love, love, love this card she made and I’m so glad she did too.  She was happy enough with this card that…..she agreed to make one more 🙂


Beginning her second card

All the prompting she needed after agreeing to give it one more try was “More Glitter”.  She’s so funny.

I had her make two of the images.  One for practice and one for the real deal.  When I began stamping I was never happy with my first stamped image and always had to do it over so I gave her the chance to have a bit more experience.  This might be her last time at stamping and I wanted to ease her into it yet keep her motivated.

She was thinking that I was coming up with spectacular ideas as we were creating her cards.  Truth to tell, I was making it all up as we went along.


Glitter and more glitter

I told her we were going to make the word look like snow.  She was not sure what I was talking about so I showed her on the first “S”.

When she saw what she had to do, and how simple it was, she had it all together and I could leave her to do it for a while.

Filling in the “S” with 2-Way glue then adding the glitter was so much easier than coloring in the image with the markers.  Thought she deserved a bit of a break and go into something fun.

Maybe someday I will get just as excited about glitter as she is.  That girl has “Glitter Power”!


Looks like snow to me!

By this time Pati was relaxing a bit in all of this.  She  was being a bit more enthusiastic about this adventure and the acquiescent house guest was being less and less.

Maybe I could now persuade her to make one more card with the last stamp in the set.  Maybe.  We still had to finish this one.

Pati has her Mom and Dad in mind for one of these cards, and this one for one of her sons.  She has two of them so I’ll press her a bit to get another one made so both of her sons will have a pleasant Christmas surprise made specially for them by their Mom.


Northern Flurries embossing folder

Balking came with the instruction to run the card base through the Big Shot with the Northern Flurries embossing folder.  She wanted no part in that at all.

It took a bit of pushing on my part and just being my aggravating self to get her to try it.  Once it was done then it was over.  She was having no more part of the Big Shot.

At least I got her to try it once, that was all I cared about.  Since she was telling me she was not going to do that again I thought better of pushing her further.  She just might bail for certain if I did that.


One more time

I did get her to stamp the last image in the set and work with it.

With a little bit of prompting she cut the card base paper and all the rest on her own.  She even stamped the image on her own and began the coloring with markers.

More glitter was brought out, even the chunky gold glitter to be used on the ornament top.

I can’t say she is “Hooked” on card making but I can say she has done a fantastic job and I am so proud of her for venturing out of her comfort zone and trying a lot of new things.  Even if I had to egg her along with thoughts of more glitter 🙂


Card #1

Card #2

Card #3

These are the three cards Pati made, AND she stamped an image – totally unaided by me – on the envelopes for her cards.  Sis, I am so proud of you.  Your cards look FANTASTIC.  Your very first time at making cards from start to finish.

I have to report, when I was telling Joe of our day’s events and Pati’s card creations, she even said she enjoyed herself.  We did have a great time doing this.

Briefly Out Of The Tunnel

Being home with no distractions, have a couple projects to do, I get “Tunnel Vision” and everything outside the sphere is totally  neglected.  Everything falls to the wayside during these stints.  Everything and everyone.  Flylady‘s mantra of “You can do anything in 15 minutes” gets totally ignored.

Paper work has come to a dead stand still and nothing has been done with it since I began the online course of Creating A Website on November 10th.  Progression has been from maddeningly slow to full speed ahead.  I’m nearly done with my website.  The end is in sight.

I have my Sister with me for a few days while Les and Joe are out being “Road Warriors”.  Pati and Tweety will be here with me to keep me company.  I have plans (rubbing hands together) bwahahahahaha.  Tweety will be sprinkled with glitter and probably have a piece of foam dot paper or two on her.  Christmas card creations will be happening at our kitchen table for Pati’s family and friends.  I get to be a teacher with an actual person to teach.  Rubber stamping, using the paper trimmer, the Big Shot.  Oh, half of my craft room will be out at the kitchen table.  What fun!!!

I have a few things to share with you.  Joe and Les were at a Waffle House in Van Buren, Arkansas.  A server that had put in 28 years of service had suffered a massive heart attack and was rushed to the hospital.  Having no insurance to take care of her hospital stay, her co-workers began searching for some way of helping out in her time of need.   The solution has been items sold from Willie MakeIt  that are sold at the Waffle House.  All proceeds from the sale of these items go directly to the server.


Stick out tongue fan

Crying face fan

Ever have one of those days you’d like to stick your tongue out at someone and NOT really do it?  Or let someone know you are having a bad moment?  Cover your mouth with these fans and display your emotions.


Hillbilly cell phone

Caller ID

Phil Baker, aka Willie MakeIt is a comedian at one of the show places in Branson, Missouri.  He created this “Hillbilly Cell Phone” with “Caller ID” and the two fans above.  These items are sold at the Waffle House for the woman that has served hot coffee and waffles with a smile and excellent service to customers for 28 years.  Waffle House employees contacted Mr. Baker and asked if they could sell his items to raise money for  the woman and he stepped right up and shipped boxes of product to the store.

I love America and the open and loving hearts of our people.  Willing to help someone out that is in a bind and get them through their tough spot in life.

Sorry this post is so short, but I’m off to begin my duties as a “Stampin’ Up! Demonstrator”.  The results will be shared over the next few days.

Everyone, try to stay warm and dry.  Safe passage on all roadways you travel.

Working The “Little Grey Cells”

I’m a huge fan of British mystery shows.  Agatha Christie and her Hercule Poirot character are my favorite, followed by her Miss Marple character.  I can’t name all the shows I’ve watched over the years and enjoyed, Lynn will have to help me out with the names.  There is, of course, my very favorite non Agatha Christie mystery with Dame Helen Mirren, “Prime Suspect”.  There was a rather strange show with a motley mix of town folk and rural characters.  The local Constable had a name that began with “Mc” and I can’t remember what it was.  They lived in “McDoo” or is “Loch Doo”.  Yes, I know that is not the correct way of spelling the town or village but that is how they say it.  The main character went on to make a movie “The Full Monty” which had me laughing till I choked myself in a coughing fit.   Then there is one show with a rather handsome Inspector that lives in a village with a lot of hidden villainy going on.  He is forever telling his wife he will be present for some local event and gets side tracked by nefarious people.  He does make a show at the event but usually near the end of it all.

Okay, that is not the direction I wanted this post to go.  My brain is cycling like a car with bad spark plugs or something.  Kind of hit and miss as it rumbles along with a bit of backfiring now and again.  I hope I can get through this without any stalls or …..

Have you ever taken on a project that leaves you wondering if you will make it all the way through to the end?  When you are already loaded down with your normal life?  I’ve done just that.

This project has become all consuming to me.  Just when I think I’ve got it in shape I find there is more things to do and changes have to be made to all I’ve done.  I’m taking an online course in “Creating Web Pages” and I’m beginning to wonder if I will make it to the end.  Unlike my favorite character, Hercule Poirot, I think my “Little Grey Cells” are bursting like popped balloons instead of being stimulated.  They are getting over stimulated and I can’t hold a conversation with Joe for longer than a couple seconds before I lose all train of the conversation.  Things I want to say go off like camera flash bulbs and die just as quickly so I don’t remember what I was saying or what I was going to say.

I thought stimulating your brain and activating it out of atrophy was the way to stave off senility!  It seems to have the opposite effect on my brain.  Maybe it is because of all the years sitting behind the steering wheel of a semi truck and inhaling the diesel exhaust.  Like my butt, it has spread out from all the sitting and my bones and muscles tighten up from the long hours of inactivity where I have trouble getting moving for a time until my body limbers up.

A dead stall now and I’m trying to get it running again…..

My Goal….to have a website available to anyone that is trying to learn all there is to know about making cards or creating scrapbook layouts.  I remember the total frustration I had when I was teaching myself how to make a scrapbook page.  When it came to product purchases I didn’t have a clue and bought anything I could fit in the cart.  Budget?  What’s a budget?  That all went out the window as I walked the aisles of Michaels grabbing stuff off shelves.  Didn’t matter what it was as long as it was in the scrapbook or card making aisles it went in my cart.

Then I became addicted to eBay.  Early in the morning and late at night I was trolling the goods and bidding on anything so I would not have to go to Michaels.  I became quite friendly with our postal carrier.  Joe asked me if I was trying to open a store since I had so much stuff to nearly do that with.  My purchases far exceeded the space my room would hold and I had to have him install cupboards and armoire things.  I still have quite a bit of the original “Stuff” I bought in the beginning of this madness.  Pawning stuff off to Carissa and my sister Pati has barely put a dent in it all.  I think it is time to do some heavy duty “RAK”s and get rid of a bunch of stuff.

Okay, backfired once again….

Back on track here.  Like everything else I undertake, the concept is simple, however, the actual execution of the concept is anything but simple.  Those of you that have been crafting for quite a while…take a look around at your space and actually see what you have.  How many types of glue do you own?  Me…I have white tacky glue that is not acid free, another tacky glue that IS acid free,  bookbinding glue, Glossy Accents, Mod Podge, E6000, Anywhere Glue Stick, and Two Way Glue Pen.  That is just glue!!!  Then I have all the other types of adhesives.  An ATG gun, Snail, Dimensionals, foam dots, foam tape, Sticky Strip, Vellum adhesive, Sticky Dots in two different sizes, Glue Dots, repositionable tape runner, and double sided sticky tape.

My website concept has gone from “Adhesives” with a short description of acid free and regular to this mass of different types of adhesive and what they are used for.  I spent all of yesterday working out the page for the different types of paper available.

What began as a place for a beginner to come to and get answers is turning into a massive undertaking that has me waffling between continuing on my path and having a comprehensive site that will answer any question put forth by a beginner to just down right chucking it all and walking away from it.  The only thing that keeps me going is remembering how frustrated I felt when I went from one website to the next reading what a seasoned crafter had to say, which generally wasn’t much, about any product or technique.  I had to go through so many websites to find my answers that later I could not remember which site had the answer I needed.

So…learning how to write HTML code properly has added more to this equation.  Today’s lesson is about Tables and how to write them to get pages to look good.  Everything I did yesterday on my “Paper” page now has to be gone over and redone using Tables.  No…that is not someone knocking on your door.  That is me banging my head on my desk as I write this.

Lynn Claridge, in the UK, has excitedly shared with me that she wrote all the codes for her website when she and her husband, Rod, had their Greenhouse Nursery.  I guess I’d better stop whining about all this and get about the business of having a place for beginning crafters to find answers to all of their questions.  Lynn….my hat is off to you!  You still seem to be able to walk and talk after all of that so there is hope for me, too.

UPDATE on the Baby Front:  Carissa just got back from her doctor and their urine test says she is pregnant too!!!  WOO HOO!!!!  Confirmation!  I’m so happy and excited for them.  About to burst 🙂


EXCITING News To Share!



This Thanksgiving season, I have much to be thankful for.  Healthy family, awesome friends, and an abundance of riches supplied by said family and friends.

Saturday morning, early for my Arizona daughter, Carissa, she called me.  That was unusual for her and totally out of character.  Then to hear her crying sent off all kinds of warning bells, whistles, and klaxons going off in my head.  Something awful has happened to her husband, Jaime, or to her!!!

In a whispered voice she said something through the breathless tears.  I was ready to get in my car and begin driving to Arizona to be with her.  I knew there had to be some bad trouble.

“What?!” is all I could manage at first.  Once I got control of my fear I blurted out “Are you alright?  What’s the matter with Jaime?  Is there something wrong?  It’s too early for you to be calling me!  What’s the matter?!!”  I was snatching off my pajamas and trying to hop into sweat pants one handed, hopping around all over the place and just barely keeping myself from falling down and hitting the walls and door in our bedroom.  “Keys, keys…where are my keys?”  Joe came in to the room to see what all the noise was about and I told him “Carissa’s crying, something’s wrong.  Help me get my clothes on.  Get dressed.”

In a barely audible voice I heard Carissa say “Mom.  I’m pregnant.” Everything stopped for longer than a heartbeat.  I told Joe and we both sat down on the bed.  Him with tears, me trying to get my heart rate back to normal.

Joe scared the fool out of me by yelling at the top of his voice “Woo Hoo!”  Then it all clicked into focus for me.

Carissa and Jaime have been married for five years.  She’s wanted to have a baby for such a long time, and they have tried everything with no success.  My poor Rissa.  She’s cried till she could cry no more tears.  She’s been to a mid wife that told Carissa her uterus was tipped and needed to be righted.  After some manipulation and other Latin midwifery things Carissa had her abdomen bound with a cloth and told how to get in and out of bed, up and down from chairs, walk up and down stairs, lifting objects, and other things that would use her abdominal muscles for the next week until the uterus was settled back in the right place.

Carissa and Jaime have gone through some of the expensive fertility treatments, she’s tried to lose weight (which all the doctors told her was her problem), she’s been on an exercise regimen for the past three years that has had a modicum of success with her weight.  She’s been diagnosed with PCOS – Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome – and a high insulin level.  Treatment was done for that with no success either.

For a time, anyone crazy enough to ask Carissa when she and Jaime were going to have a baby, either received no answer, or the flood gates would open and she’d walk away without saying a word.  Carissa felt like she was a failure as a wife and well meaning people only brought that up to her time and again.

I’ve heard all the questions of “Why” in all the variations.  Not having an answer for my daughter has been torture for me.  I had been in a car accident when I was 18.  Doctors told me I would never have children.  Within seven months I was pregnant with my first and over the next six years I had a total of four children.  How can I answer questions for my precious daughter who can’t have children while I seemed to pop them out right and left.  Both of her two older sisters have had children.  The unfairness of it all seemed to come crashing down upon Carissa.

The whispered words from Carissa finally made sense to me.  Can this truly be happening to her?  After all these years and all the different treatments that have failed, can this really be true?  She didn’t want to speak the words out loud lest they be false and send her reeling back into her own kind of hell.

She had been experiencing some strange things going on with her body and was not quite sure what it all meant.  Before taking her morning shower she decided to do a pregnancy test.  It came up POSITIVE.  Disbelief at the results and knowing some tests give false positive results she waited a little while and took another test.  BOTH of them came up POSITIVE.

Carissa had been trying to get hold of Jaime all morning to tell him the news.  He was not answering his phone.  She called me to tell me the news so I was the second one to know.  I was sworn to SECRECY and told if I blabbed I’d be in deep, deep trouble.  I had to pass the admonishment on to Joe to not tell anyone until she gave us the go ahead.

By the end of the day I had text messages from family congratulating me on being Grandma again.  So I was freed of my sworn secrecy.  It has been plastered all over Carissa’s Facebook page for all the world to know the news.

I’m really happy for Carissa and Jaime.  A bit reserved right now in my excitement because I do have some superstitions.  There are things I want to do for her…..begin buying diapers, baby clothes, toys, and other things.  I’m going to hold off on doing that for a while until I know she is at least four or five months along.  Crazy as it sounds, I would feel like it is my fault if anything happens.

I waited that long for Tiffany, too, after we found out she was pregnant with our Simon.  He is now two years old and the most adorable little boy this world  has ever seen.  Course you have to know that this Grandma is prejudice 🙂

Plans to get things in order here at home and in our jobs will take place after the five month time frame.  Shopping sprees for the new baby, getting our routing on the road to take me to Arizona for the birth of this new child so I can spend the first two weeks with Carissa and Jaime helping them out and making sure she is healing well.  Doing all the house work, cooking, laundry so they don’t have to do anything except love on the new one.  Course, you know the real reason is so that I can have access to the new baby at all times – day and night 🙂

Joe’s back out on the road.  I’ll have about three weeks of quiet and I can get my work done without being asked what there is to eat around here, or have to leave the house every day on one errand or another, being asked to watch tv with him.  It is good to have him home with me during the winter months.  I have to be more dedicated to my tasks and not get so upset when he interrupts me and then I let everything fall to pieces because I use him as an excuse to not do anything 😦

So, that is my news and I’m really excited for Carissa and Jaime.  I pray they are blessed with a healthy child.  Girl or boy, doesn’t matter as long as it is healthy.