Tuesday, December 31, 2013

2013 - A year of ups and downs

My goodness, 2013 has been a whirlwind year of ups and downs.

Since January 28th ~ the night the Lord called Daddy home ~ life has not been the same. It never will be again. It’s different, and that’s the way life goes. To say the least, finding the new normal for us left behind has been challenging. I know time heals. I’m sure once we get through all the “firsts” the dealing of our new life will get easier.

I spent the month of February and a bit of March away from the studio, helping my mother. Although I had temporarily closed my ArtFire shop, I received a special order request via email for four “cupcake” half aprons. It was a timely Godsend distraction. I was so grateful to work, to create something, to sew, to think about something other than missing my Daddy, and what my momma must be going through after almost 66 years of marriage.   

Upon my return home, and back to my studio, I was able to focus on something I’d never done before! It was certainly an “up” moment! I had been invited to give a book review of my first novel, Where Forever Begins, A Simple Love Story!
Available for Kindle, too! 
Amazing! Folks said I did a good job. I don’t remember much as it’s a blur!

I did sell and sign quite a few books (a good thing!) and someone invited me to speak for another group in 2014!

Then, Momma's refrigerator started leaking & flooded her kitchen floor... so, back to Dallas and my sister & I spent Easter Sunday replacing her flooring!
I think we did a pretty good job!
Looking back over this blog, I didn’t write much this year. Things kept happening and it was hard to stay positive, upbeat, and inspirational.

In March, I remember working on a quilt kit my sister had given me, and wrote a bit about it. It was great sewing therapy for me as I didn’t have to come up with my own design… simply follow instructions.

Then I found out my baby niece had melanoma.
(I’m happy happy happy to report after surgeries & treatment, she’s doing great!)
2008 - at her PhD reception! 
It was hard living miles away from her, during this discovery, surgeries, and healing time. I wanted to make something to give her, to give her hugs, to comfort her. A long time ago, she turned me on to working Sudoku puzzles. So, I made her a mini quilt wall hanging depicting a completed Sudoku. To help me stay focused and positive, I wrote a tutorial how I designed and created the wall hanging.

In April, Momma came to the country for a nice visit...

Love when she uses her watercolor pencils and creates a lovely picture!
And, she's able to relax!
And, begins to sew again!

And, examines the Keyhole Garden!
I was “up” again when planning for the Lampasas Spring Ho Parade and making all the dolls new clothes to wear!

This was during the time momma went to Hawaii, joining my oldest niece for a week in paradise!

And I managed to design & create an apron to enter in the Lampasas County Fair, as well as the State Fair of Texas.

Then ~ July 9th ~
Momma slipped attempting to get on a massage table... ambulance ride to the hospital…

Back to Dallas to help…

After spending a few days in the hospital after surgery to repair her broken femur, then to a rehab facility, I did make a quick trip back home for a few days and participated in the Lampasas Spring Ho parade.

We did win 2nd place in our category!
(NOTE TO SELF: Walking a parade route, pulling a garden wagon – July in Texas – must re-think next year!)

Back to Dallas... 
The neglectful rehab facility almost killed her… four days without the ability to swallow, take meds of any sort (especially pain medication)… we got her out of there and to her gastro doctor. He sent her straight to the out-patient clinic for an upper GI Endoscopy and found the obstruction, got it taken care of, then another one several weeks later for check up – meaning three doses of general anesthetic within two months… not a good thing for anyone, much less someone 84 years young!

Well, we got through August. After spending ten days at my sisters, Momma & I came back to her house for continued at-home therapy and recuperation time... 

and, that's when I started my first Quilt of Valor quilt while she and a friend worked on their drawings...

Because September is National Sewing Month, and in between caring for Momma, I forced myself to write an article per day… it was such a struggle to stay positive, hopefully share something of interest.

When I got home in October… back to the studio… I managed a few more articles, and sewing projects that I had previously written about – trying to stay focused and positive.

It’s then I can see my priorities changed.

Lanetta’s Creations ArtFire shop will remain open, praying the inventory of aprons, doll clothes, and other items offered will eventually sell. I can’t see making any new items for my shop.

I just don’t have it in me any longer to market like I should.

I will gladly do custom orders, or special requests for items in specific colors and sizes.

This doesn’t mean I won’t be sewing! I love to sew! It’s my stress reliever! It’s the way I keep sane. My dream has changed a bit, yet the focus remains…

In 2014 and beyond, I will sew to help others, to bring them comfort, to offer warmth and joy.

Thanksgiving was held here, at the country, with Momma, Bud, and my girls...

And we had a very nice Christmas at Momma's
Especially because my sister & I decided to focus totally on Momma this year...

Then the next day, baby niece & her husband, one of her son's (tallest), and his friend, came over to celebrate another day of Christmas! Before the festivities began, the boys escorted Momma across the street to deliver homemade cookies fresh from the oven to our dear neighbors and friends. (First time Momma's walked across the street since before she broke her leg!)

We had a great extended Christmas this year. We missed Daddy terribly, but we found great comfort knowing he was spending his first Christmas with Jesus.

I am thankful for my loving, sweet momma,
who taught me to sew, how to love unconditionally, and for her never ending support.

I am thankful I had a loving, kind, gentle Daddy for almost 60 years,
who taught me courage, gave me strength, and love of my country.

I am thankful for a loving and supportive husband,
and the beautiful daughter he brought into my life.

I am thankful for my sister,
especially for giving me two sweet dear nieces
I feel as though they are my own daughters.

I am thankful for my extended family,
and the friends I have in my life
- past and present!

I am thankful for my two girls, Beth and Anna,
for the joy they bring to my life.

And, most importantly,
I am thankful I know God.

Through all the ups and downs, I am blessed.

May you have a fabulous 2014! 


  1. I am sorry for your struggles in 2013. Your Momma is a tough lady! I live very near Dallas but I do get falling off the massage table. I am thankful she is doing better. I hope you are able to visit this part of Texas more often.

    You should visit some of the lakes for inspiration in the Dallas area. Tawakoni is very barren in spots. Lake Fork looks like it was just started in spots. Ray Hubbard has some inspiration off 30. Lake Lavon is totally dry. It was a big part of my life 50 years ago.

    Happy New Year. A better 2014 for all of us. I would love to meet you if you have time sometime when you are visiting. You can contact me through email, Google+, or Facebook.

    1. Happy New Year, Sharon! Thank you so much for leaving such a lovely comment!

      Yes! I do have a tough Momma indeed!

      I grew up in Dallas, the Oak Cliff side, and love the time spent visiting there when I can. Living in the Texas Hill Country, however, is where I find my peace, and inspiration! It's so quiet (except for the early morning coyotes howls)!

      Maybe we could meet at Thomas's Sewing Center in Mesquite (they are right off 635) - that may be about half way for us both and it's a lovely shop!

      I hope and pray we all have a better 2014!


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