Monday, November 3, 2014

Blog Your Heart

It's been a while since I last blogged. I've been through a lot the past year, and just needed time to BE. No pressures, no commitments, other than getting through the day with my boys and surviving. And maybe having a little fun too.

So I'm using this opportunity to take Stephanie Howell's cue to Blog my Heart... 

1. I am officially done with treatment for my breast cancer. I had a bilateral mastectomy followed by 23 doses of chemotherapy. I am now dealing with congestive heart failure caused by the chemo which was stopped early. I'm on meds to keep the strain off my heart, but I need to exercise more often and I have to watch how much sodium I eat. Which basically means no more processed quick meals from a can or the freezer and most of my food is freshly prepared - not a bad diet to be on, and I've already lost about 10 pounds after the water weight came off. It still feels a bit strange to say I'm done with treatment, but then again I never really defined myself as a cancer patient, so it makes sense that it feels weird to call myself a cancer survivor.

2. I'm working on registering for college. Finally. I plan to start taking classes in the spring with the intention of becoming a nurse. 18 year old me would not have been able to do it. I was too shy, afraid to speak up, and definitely did not like needles and dealing with "gross" stuff. But life has thrown me enough challenges that I've been through with grace to know I can definitely handle it now. And I know I'd make a kick-ass oncology nurse.

3. I haven't really been very creative this year. Scrapbooking has taken a back seat to my health, and I'm okay with that. I'm getting back into the swing of things by making a 4x4 mini album for November with what I'm thankful for this month. And I have a lot of things to be grateful for.

4. I turned 35 last month. It seems like I should know who I am by now. But I've always been afraid of showing my true authentic self that she got buried somewhere in me. So this year I'm working on digging her out. Figuring out who I really am and who I want to be. I've always lived my life in reaction to what is happening around me, it's time to finally start living with intention.

Right now I'm taking an online course by Heather Plett called The Spiral Path: A Woman's Journey to Herself. I just happened to fall upon it online one day and it's exactly what I've been looking for to come back to my authentic self. 

I also have several books sitting on my bookshelf waiting to be read on my journey:

I also have a few pretty journals to write my thoughts in, and a mini scrapbook album to document the pieces of me that I find. I may also blog some of my journey on here.

I'm also currently reading the book Shift Happens: How to Live an Inspired Life...Starting Right Now! by Robert Holden. I'm only a few chapters in and it's already got me changing the way I think about things. Here's a quote from the book I really loved:

"It is God's joy to give you everything. Know you can have whatever you want. Be still, and know who you are."

Who you are is not your labels. I am not a wife, a mom, a cook, a housekeeper, an organizer of family schedules and things. I am not my roles in life.

But thinking on a deeper level, I am also not what has happened to me or the labels I give myself.

I am not cancer.

I am not identified by my weight or health.

I am not the girl who grew up poor.

I am not the girl with no voice, who was never heard.

I am not invisible.

I am me. And I am beautiful exactly the way I am.

Friday, January 31, 2014

Chilled Cucumber Soup

Here are a few more layouts that I did with Jillibean Soup's Chilled Cucumber Soup, available at The Memory Nest:

I had so much fun playing with this collection, it's such a wonderful neutral collection for boys!

Tuesday, January 21, 2014

January Counterfeit Kit

Hello! I'm following along with the Counterfeit Kit Challenge this month, and the inspiration kit for January is the December 2013 kit from Hip Kit Club:
This week I have a video showing my counterfeit kit for the month of January:


And here's another look at my kit:

I look forward to creating with this kit and will be posting more soon! (and if you actually watch the video I'd love to know your thoughts, but be nice, this was my first video!)

Friday, January 17, 2014

Polar Express

This layout is inspired by the following sketch challenge from Let's Get Sketchy:

And here is my layout....

Just a couple notes. When working with alphabet stamps, especially when they've been handed down to you from someone else and this is the first time you're using them, it's important to make sure the letters are facing the right way! I actually don't mind the backwards E too much but I certainly would not have done that on purpose! Also, the green ticket was something Liam got in class when they had a Polar Express day at school but the green was a little too bright for this layout so I scuffed it up with some brown ink. It gives it a little more personality, I think!

Gingerbread Man

This layout is inspired by this sketch challenge at Life. Paper. Scrapbook.

And here is my layout:

Wonderful Wonderful

This next layout is inspired by this sketch from Inspired Blueprints:

And here is my layout:

Snow Day

This next layout started out with this sketch from Creative Scrappers as inspiration:

And here's my layout: