Thursday, September 30, 2010

Here is my entry for The Collage Obsession's Pink Challenge.   I hope you like it.  Pink is one of my favorite colors.  I'm pretty new to this.

I've been busy working on new digital collages and having loads of fun with it.  I designed this to put on the front of a Birthday card I am making for my sister-in-law.  I'm really hoping she will like it.  I think it turned out lovely.

Saturday, September 25, 2010

In Remembrance of My Father

The month of October holds one of my favorite Sabbats and also one of the saddest times for me.  As Samhain approaches it brings a time of joy and a time of sadness.  Some of you may know the heartache I am going to express, as I lost my father to stomach cancer during this beautiful month.  As fall approaches and the leaves turn their beautiful shades of amber, red, and orange, I am hard pressed not to recall the anguish my family and I went through 18 years ago.  As I sit and remember all the wonderful and loving memories of my father, it is still hard to believe that it has been 18 years since his passing to the summerlands.  It still feels like yesterday to me.  The pain is easier, but it will always be with me.  I know deep within my heart and soul that he is in a better place and no longer suffering from the cancer that was eating away at his body, however, it makes it no less hurtful. Every year I try to do a little something special to remember him.  One year I wrote him a letter and went to his grave and read it to him, sat for a while and talked with him and then burned the letter.  Since I am no longer in travelling distance to his grave, I wondered what I could do in remembrance of him this year.  So I thought what better way than to put a post up about him. Lawrence Gerow, known as Larry to his friends and family, was a giving, kind-hearted, generous, honest, and loyal man.  He never raised his voice or had a bad thing to say about anyone.  When I needed encouragement, he was always there for me.  He taught me how to be respectful, courteous, strong and confident.  Through him I learned how not to judge people, but accept them for who they are.  My father was a Washington State Trooper for more than 25 years and then retired and worked as a security guard for Boeing.  I’ll never forget when he taught me to drive.  We were driving along 4th Street by the High School not far from my house (I grew up in a very small town, actually the one my father’s family helped pioneer) and my father calmly looked at me and said “Lisa, is there something wrong with this picture?”  I immediately realized I was driving down the wrong side of the street!!  How could he remain so calm when I was driving in the wrong lane?  Well for one, there wasn’t anyone else on the road and for the other, that’s just how he was.  I don’t ever remember my father getting upset or anxious.  Even when he was rushing me to the hospital in the back of his patrol car after I had a friend’s horse trample me, he remained calm.  He was my rock!!  Our favorite thing to do was to jog together and train for marathons.  I still, to this day, do not understand how a man, who was in perfect health, never drank or smoke, died of cancer.   Dad was the glue that held our family together.  When he passed, in my grief and selfishness, I submerged myself into an alcoholic and drug induced oblivion, trying not to face the pain of losing my father at the tender age of 23.  Some may not think that 23 is that young to lose a father, but for me it was devastating.  I’d lived a very sheltered life, in a small town.  I always had my father to look out for me; he went so far as to run the license plates of my dates to make sure they had nothing on their record.  I knew everyone in my school as we all grew up together from kindergarten.  I married my high school sweetheart (and unfortunately as my father was dying my marriage was falling apart), so I really had no idea of what life was really like or how cruel it could be.  So here I was, 23, my father dead of a horrible cancer, my marriage failed and living in the big city of Seattle.  Talk about getting caught up in a world that I was ill equipped for.  Well, the good thing is I made it out ok and the stronger for it.  At the worst times of my life my father would come to me in my dreams and wrap his arms around me like he would when I was a little girl, squeeze me tight and tell me it would be ok.  That I had to be strong and stand tall and I’d get through it.  He was right!  I always did.  I wouldn’t be the woman I am today if I hadn’t had my father.  I love you Dad and I always will.  Thank you for being my father and my role model. 

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

For the past few days I have been taking time out to spend a little time in my studio creating some new items.  I'm trying my hand at altered art and collages, which I have found to be extremely fun.  I'm also painting an old wood table a pretty white and then I plan to distress it.  Eventually all the woods will be white and chippy.  Normally I'm not real big on white, but I find it a good palette to have in the studio.  I'd like to paint the walls, but I'm not sure if I want them a soft blue or a pale pink.

Here is my first attempt at a collage.

Saturday, September 18, 2010

My Newest Ebay Treasure

Ebay, oh how addictive it can be.  You see it, you want it, you put a bid in, someone bids more, you have to have it, you up the bid, that darn person bid more...IT'S MINE, why can't they get that through their's over and the rush of realization I WON, I WON, I WON!!  Luckily I set a limit for myself LOL!  This is my newest winning on Ebay and I just love it.

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

One of the most fulfilling things in my life right now is being a foster mom to surrendered Bengal cats through Great Lakes Bengal Rescue.  Through this organization I have managed to place 3 very wonderful kitties and adopt two of my own.  I first knew I wanted to volunteer with rescue work after I had to put down my beautiful kitty Izzy.  Izzy wandered into our lives after one Christmas about 3 years ago.  It took me about a week to get him to come out from under our little deck so that I could take him to a vet.  I knew he was sick, but he didn't trust me enough to actually come out.  It was so cold and snowy, yet I sat on the deck with the kennel with tuna in the back waiting for him to come out and take the tuna.  He did eventually venture into the kennel and I frantically looked for a vet willing to see him right away.  The poor little guy was near death.  Finally, I managed to find a vet and upon checking him over the prognosis was not good.  Izzy stayed the night and I picked him up the next day.  The vet said he's a fighter, he'd managed to survive the night.  For the next 7 days I nursed Izzy back to health.  Laying with him and coaxing him to eat.  He started to gain weight and become active and reach good health again.  Suddenly one night, Izzy started to have an attack and couldn't breathe.  We rushed him to the emergency animal hospital and found out that Izzy had a very severe case of asthma caused from pneumonia he'd had while being on his own.  Izzy blessed our lives for 9 wonderful months. 

Izzy at the day at the vets when I first caught him.
Izzy at the vet, sick and underweight

Izzy after being nursed back to health

I knew that Izzy wasn't going to be with us for much longer and my daughter would be so upset so we went to the Southside Animal Shelter and adopted a kitty for her, we named Stormy.

Stormy relaxing on the couch
After we lost Izzy, I knew that I wanted to do as much as I could for animals need which led us to adopt another kitty, he looks just like my Izzy, that had been in a shelter for almost a year and a half.  He's my very special little boy and has a room all to himself.  He has our master suite all to himself as he doesn't socialize well with other animals.  He's very shy and timid.  Maximillion loves his rooms though.  He has a cat tree by window that over looks the woods in the backyard, a walk in closet to climb all around, and a huge king size bed to snooze on.


Now we have Rajhi our first Bengal kitty we adopted through Great Lakes Bengal Rescue.  He's just a little over a year old and full of life.  He can jump as high as 5 feet from the ground.  He's also known to do flips in the air trying to catch a feather.

Rajhi the Baby

Our latest adoptee is Lola.  She is the sweetest cat in the world and absolutely adores my daughter.  If you are looking for Lola, just find Lexi and you'll find Lola.

Lola the Mama (she mother's everyone)

Lola to gets a drink

It's the only way she will drink
Now I'm just waiting to get word on the next foster I will take in until we find a forever home for him or her.

I'm sitting here frustrated and tired, yet I can't sleep.  I always seem to be waiting on tests results and doctors appointments these days.  You know that old saying "sick and tired of feeling sick and tired".  This has become the story of my life the last several years.  I feel like I'm somehow letting my family down because I'm not the same old person I used to be.  Every year it's been one thing after another.  It got to the point that I quit going to the doctor, they never had anything good to tell me anyway, so why bother.  My husband became so frustrated with me (I guess he didn't like my Ostrich approach to my health issues) that I agreed to go see the doctor.  Now about 5 different tests later, waiting on the results I still feel like my ignorance would have been bliss.  I don't know what approach to take anymore.  There is no cure for my one major health issue and the others resulted from chemo.  Now there are new problems and it sounds like another medication to take.  I hate medication!  I've changed my lifestyle so much that I thought that it would have helped.  It does appear that it has to some degree, but not enough.  I tell myself often that it could always be worse and that at least I am still here with my family and able to function (mostly) on a daily basis in some capacity.  The biggest frustration is I will feel so bad for several weeks (sometimes to the point of being bedridden) and then all of a sudden feel like my old self again.  Loads of energy, happy, feeling awesome and it usually lasts 2 to 3 days and then BAM!  Back to feeling like crud.  However, the biggest plus to this whole scenario is, I have an awesome husband and daughter and I am extremely blessed.  They have their faults, but they are always there for me.  I've learned tons about organic living and healthy cooking; to all our benefits!  So there are some good things out of this whole situation.  I wish all my friends and family good health and a happy life always.

Lisa Kay

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

New Email Button

I decided to play around a little more with the button I made linking to my email address and I came up with this.

Making Buttons for my Blog

So I learned a very, very valuable lesson to make sure and not use someone else' button unless it says "grab it" or something to that effect and to make sure that the blinkies etc. are from a free site.  I guess I assumed that most people were using the same free stuff...well you know what "assume" sorry to have made an *ss of myself. 

However this did inspire me to create a few of my own.  Here are the ones I have created from my own pictures and scrapbook items.  Let me know what you think. 

I have a few more ideas so I'll be spending some more time with my photoshop and play around.    I know there is so much more to learn and I'm having such a blast learning.  Have a wonderful week.

Hugs, Lisa Kay

Sunday, September 12, 2010

New Banner for Etsy Shop

Ok, I think I finally got the banner I want done for my Etsy shop Belle Gemme by Lisa.  After many different attempts, I am satisfied with my efforts.  I have learned so much along the way with my new Adobe Photoshop Premier Elements and I still have tons more to learn.    Well here it is.  If you like it please let me know.

Purple is one of my favorite colors along with pink.  The rose is also my favorite flower along with the Calla lilly.  That is one of my pieces of jewelry I made, which will also be for sale.  It is one of my favs.  It is made from rose quartz, amethyst and lapis lazuli and a sterling silver clasp and extension chain with a little heart at the end of the chain.  I hope to see you when I get my store open; I can't wait.

Love, LisaKay

Saturday, September 11, 2010

World Recipe Exchange

I was just perusing some of my favorite blogs and happened across a blog called Seasons of My Mind that is hosting a World Recipe exchange until the end of October 2010.  I've sent my recipe in and I think this is such a wonderful idea.  I love to cook and I have so many wonderful family recipes.  I hope you decide to take part in this great opportunity too.  I can only imagine all the different types of recipes that could be collected and find out how someone came about having the recipe.   The kitchen is, after all, the heart of the home.  In the immortal words of my loving Nanny Coles "the way to a man's heart is through his stomach".  Happy cooking!! 

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My Dream Home ❀♥Ƹ̵̡Ӝ̵̨̄Ʒ♥❀

I so love French Country decor and homes/cottages.  In researching and looking for inspiration for my own home to turn it into that sanctuary I'm looking for, I found some wonderful inspiration.
I so love the beauty and tranquility this home inspires.  Who wouldn't love coming home to this after a hard days work?

I can just picture this as my entrance to my backyard oasis.  Sitting at my lovely wrought iron bistro set sipping on Italian coffee and listening to the birds in the morning.  

This would be another entrance to yet another garden retreat to spend my time planning all the marvelous creations I plan to make.

And, of course, what garden would be complete without a cherub fountain?  I just love this.  I actually have a wonderful spot in front of my house that this would fit perfectly in.  I'll have to find that photo and put it in later.

Oh and the much needed solarium for all the wonderful plants and herbals I love to grow so much.  Now if I could just win the lottery so I could build it all!  ;-) (✿◠‿◠)

Here's an actual house plan that I found that I would love to build if I had the money.  I'm so in love with it, especially the circular aspect by the garage.

Friday, September 10, 2010

Working on Etsy store

So I have been diligently working on my etsy store so I can get my lovely jewelry creations entered and up for sale, along with creating other lovely items to add and I think I'm almost there!!!  It is a lot harder than I thought it would be to create banners, buttons, etc. for my websites.  Of course I'm no techny so thank god for the internet and all those wonderful people who have posted tutorials for those of us that are new to the game.  It's been a really rough 3 weeks for me with medical issues and all kinds of tests to go through to find out what is wrong.  Now I just get to play the waiting game to find out what the next step is.  Thankfully I have so many projects to work on when I feel up to it, which hasn't been much lately.  Well here is a picture of my banner, let me know what you think as I am new to this.

Friday, September 3, 2010

My Newest Floral Creation

I so love to create floral arrangements and I adore using old birdcages or pitchers.  I found this little cage at a flea market and painted it and then did the floral arrangement.
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