Hey, it's what I do! Welcome to my creative arts blog!

Welcome to my Maker's blog, where I feature my own unique creative projects. I'm eight years out from breast cancer and counting my blessings.

Friday, March 9, 2012

The Other Side of My Life

Does this sound familiar to you? You create/paint/recycle/sew/craft something you think is totally awesome and you send out a family email about it? That's what I used to do all the time and that's why I decided to blog instead.

My poor family, including the retired Lieutenant Commander and the active Air Force Captain, were getting crafty emails with lots of FUN DETAILS. And PICTURES. LOL, I knew there had to be a better way to get my creativity out into the world.

Hello world, anyone interested in what I'm saying?

So I started blogging to give the fam a break and share my creative side. I emphasize cheap ways to recycle, refurbish, re-imagine and rework items for your home. I feature lots of tutorials and try to post some useful and imaginative content every week. I'm always thinking how to provide interesting ideas.

Align CenterWho knew my post about making a cheap crackle effect with Elmer's Glue would be so popular?


BUT, my creative side and this blog are not my life. It is an important and interesting part and certainly loads of fun, but the most important side of my life revolves around my family.

We used to live hours away from our four kids and their families. (I must point out that our son has become a runner and lost 50+ pounds since this photo).

The ladies!

We drove thru ice and snow to get to the family Thanksgiving of 2010, when I was in chemotherapy. My daughter's house had a great kitchen and I didn't have to do any of the cooking!

We put our property up for sale with the plan to move much closer. This was our view from our front deck. It was a beautiful place. When I was diagnosed with breast cancer in October of 2010 the pressure was on to sell and move quickly. By the time I had surgery and a long regimen of chemotherapy we were lucky enough to find a buyer and make the move.

By the good grace of God we found an affordable house in the very town where our kids are living, and I was able to continue with my radiation treatments at a nearby cancer center.We bought our home at a GREAT discount. The kitchen is large with solid oak cabinets and the living and dining rooms are spacious. I have many many plans for this house.

And since moving here in April of 2011, we've hosted over 2 dozen family get togethers. That's right...two dinners a month for at least a dozen people and many times alot more.

Birthdays, anniversaries, Mother's Day, Father's Day, Easter, the 4th, more birthdays, more anniversaries, Halloween, Thanksgiving, Christmas, New Year's.....We LOVE it! In May alone there are 4 birthdays plus Mother's Day. And no, I don't do all the cooking, tho I do make my hot rolls for almost every get together.


The grandkids helped move all my planters in time for summer and set up a beautiful display.

My son and grandson built us a brand new porch. We use it every day in warm weather. Now my grandson is teaching me to play Halo. I think I have a crush on Master Chief.

In the summer  we enjoyed the annual Festival and Classic Car Cruise with family and friends. We ordered pizza and had it delivered in the middle of the Cruise, lol!

Every summer we take a family vacation with all the kids and grand kids and friends....this year we rented a vacation house with its own private swimming hole. In years past we've rented houses at the coast or had a family camp out. Splitting the vacation rental cost works out for everybody. We take turns cooking and it is a highlight of the year.

In August my parents celebrated their 60th wedding anniversary with a live orchestra, good food, my sister singing and lots of fun. This is the family photo and we had several dozen guests, too. Then we hosted a Day After Party for the family crowd. Too bad my folks still live in another state, but someday we hope they move much closer. My sisters live within two hours drive. Yay!

For Halloween we decorated to a fare thee well and had a family wii night on October 31st. Who knew old videotape and cut up plastic tablecloths could look so spooky strung up like that?

Don't forget most Friday nights are Family Skate Night. Good exercise and loads of fun every week. Sunday nights are for the family Game of Thrones get together.

Last Thanksgiving we had two turkeys. One for dinner and one for sandwiches :o)

We had two Christmas celebrations for the fam. The second one was to accommodate my sisters' work schedule and a Bon Voyage party for my daughter's departure to join her Air Force husband overseas.

Two weeks ago we hosted a birthday party for our granddaughter's good friend, Britnee. We even made her an honorary part of the family. She's got a tee shirt to prove it!

Tonight is a family spaghetti feed and game night at my house. Come on over!

And in February we celebrated...

...our 41st wedding anniversary. Yup, The Welding Man and I have been together for a long, long time. We've weathered alot together and we just keep on sailing. We have certainly been blessed and we count those blessings everyday.

Speaking of blessings, I just received a clean bill of health for my first post cancer year as did my son in law.

So my creative blog is a hugely enjoyable part of my life and keeps the engine of my artistic energy stoked. And my family keeps the gears and pistons of my life chugging along in a positive way. Counting my blessings? You bet!

Posted by Picasa


  1. God Bless You!
    So glad you are doing better!!! Hurray!!! :-D
    Oh! and thanks for the tip on crackling with Elmer's Glue .... I've tried the expensive crackling medium and guess what? It didn't even crackle!!!! So, I'm trying to glue!

  2. I am a new reader, but just wanted to say how blessed you are! Many times we focus on the negative and never give God the praise He deserves. What a great post!

  3. Thank you for sharing so much of your life. Congratulations on your clean bill of health and your anniversary. It takes work to maintain a long marriage, but it is worth it!bbb

  4. Congratulations on both beating cancer and having such a wonderful,loving family! It's heartwarming to see a family that truly likes spending time together. ~ Maureen

  5. Wow--so many blessings here-I am thanking God for your blessings.

  6. Oh, Ann, how rich you must feel!
    May you all be blessed abundantly!

  7. Mom! This post made me teary. Love you and miss you and keep up the blogging! I always read it even if I don't always comment.

  8. Thanks for treating us to this wonderful introduction to your current family. I was drawn here by the beautiful blue glass at the top of your blog. I, too, love blue glass, but it's all packed away right now. Keep blogging, and I'll keep reading. Kudos to you and happy recovery.

  9. Ann,
    First I have to say Thank You for your sweet comment on my blog today. Second, I loved reading about your family and the togetherness you share! A lot to be thankful for indeed. Congrats on getting a clean bill of health. Stay healthy and happy!

  10. Good Night Girl! this is a bunch of happy, sweet, heavy, precious info! What a great family you have and such fun, wonderful times! I could feel jealous but instead I'll just be happy for you. I look forward to seeing more crafts and will delight in sharing your joy in making them. Met you through the Shady Porch ... and would love for you to stop by my nest for a visit anytime! Blessings and am so happy for your recovery. :)

  11. I just found your wonderful blog on Pinterest from a pin of a pin of a pin......so to speak (haha). I love to follow the trail of pins! I am your newest follower and I have so enjoyed my visit...I loved the photos of your sweet family and a huge congrats on your good news about your health. So sorry for anyone who has fought that battle. God bless you,your family and blessing for your health and your son in law's!!!!=)

  12. Ann, this is a wonderful look at "the other side"! This is my first visit to your blog, but I sure love your energy and your devotion to your family. Congrats on the clean bill of health!!!!


I love your comments and read every one. They let me know if I'm on a good track with my blog. Thanks for stopping by!