Wednesday, March 30, 2011

THANK YOU for Serving....

No, not tea...for SERVING OUR COUNTRY.  A few of our groupies, along with the postmistress from OKI Post Office, helped Theresa and I put together 30 gift bags for the Wounded Warrior Women's Ride starting today through Saturday evening.  Wounded Warriors have arranged for a "women's only" ride.  Thirty women veterans who were, as the name implies, wounded while serving in our armed forces, will arrive today on our illustrious island and be retrofitted for bicyles.  Tomorrow they will take a 5 mile bike ride through a large secluded subdivision (Oh the St. James people won't like me using that "subdivision" word!Lol!), then kyaking.  On Friday they will be pampered during what Mr. Racine called "beauty day".  A local massage therapist, cosmotologist and nail tech will be offering their services along with local hairdressers.  On Saturday I am told that, compliments of Jimmy Buffet, the ladies will be dining at Margaritaville in Myrtle Beach and then see a show.  WOW!  When I heard what Mr. Racine and his wife were putting together--my heart leaped.  I don't (often) jump on a bandwagon without hesitation but I KNEW the moment I heard about their endeavor, we HAD to do something!  So here's MY KUDOS TO: Buzz, who provided the homemade and beautifully packaged cookies, kleenex, hand sanitizer and mints; Theresa D. of the post office for the bottles and fillers for the OKI souveniers, Susan for her contribution towards the adorable journals and pens, my goddaugther Maren who ran the Big Shot machine at least 60 times (while eating McD's potato cakes with the other hand!) to help make the rosette pins AND who single-handedly "stuffed" all 30 of those bottles, to Theresa who saved my over-complicating things by trying to make 30 rosettes that I failed at...she didn't kill me--she fixed them....and I promised her lunch one day....and for designing the cards to to in the bags.  I tossed in the nail file holders and the dream pillows and rounded out the cost of the journals and pens.  I THINK they are AWESOME.  We delivered them yesterday and met one of the WW.

She was extremely nice and I almost cried when she looked at me and said, "Thank you, M'am." I looked right back and said, "No, THANK YOU."  We take our freedom here in the US a little too lightly I think.  So ladies-KUDOS.  You came through and I thank you.  I could not have done it without you! Hopefully, we spread a little sunshine into their lives.  Until next time, happy stamping and scrapping. Blessings, Sharon

Sunday, March 27, 2011

You're Invited to TEA...

In the last post I mentioned I am a church secretary.  That church has an annual ladies tea in April and that's just around the corner.  My "volunteer" last week decided somewhat last moment that she would host a table.  She looked at me and said, "I think a bird theme would be nice, don't you?  A small bird cage with flowers?"  She did not know...about the *ADORABLE* bird houses made out of the Stampin' Up die and bird/branch punch.  Of didn't take me long to volunteer to help her! We had her whole table planned in less than 10 minutes!  While this isn't the china she will be using, it is similar.  I scored a small bird cage completely decorated (see the nest in there with the 3 little pink eggs?) for half price at Michael's along with a beaded garland (again 1/2 price!) that I took apart and we will work into napkin rings...all she needs to do is tuck in a few chocolate eggs...and serve the tea! 

for now...I need to go and clear the table off from my creations...tomorrow or Tues. I will post the pics of the 30 GIFT BAGS some our groupies put together (again-very last minute!) for the Wounded Women --women who served in our armed forces and have been wounded.  It is a part of the Wounded Warrior program and they are in for 3 wonderful days...but, that's for tomorrow, Scarlet! Until next time, happy stamping and scrapping. Blessings, Sharon  PS/ a SPECIAL THANKS to Theresa for loaning me her milk carton die yet again-I AM ordering my own! 

Thursday, March 24, 2011

A Quick project....

Just a quick little something I whipped up on my way out the door to work yesterday morning.  I am a church secretary.  When I was hired, there was a paid "assistant".  Her position was soon eliminated and I took on her responsibilities as well as mine.  This hard-headed red head took 2 years+ before she cried "HELP!"...and it only took a trip to the ER to convince me! Sigh.  I now have a "TEAM" of 4 ladies who rotate and come in on Wed. of each week to help.  May not sound like much, but it makes a tremendous difference!  I wanted to do a little something to "thank them" and was whipping up 30 of these nail file holders anyway for another project brewing (more on that this week-end)---so what was a few more?! Lol.  The recipient LOVED it!  Me thinks I will be adding it to my stash for shows, etc.--great little gift!

Speaking of work-better go get ready!  Until next time, happy stamping and scrapping! Blessings, Sharon

Saturday, March 19, 2011

Redeeming myself...

 Since ya'll were nice enough to let me vent...I decided to take the time to reward you with the scrapbooking I went off to do.  The credit for this layout goes to THERESA--she taught our "groupie" class (gotta get a better name for this group!) this past week.  Sharon B. (aka "the other Sharon") had requested Birthday pages with cupcakes.  Theresa complied complete with the Stampin' Up cupcake stamp & punch set.  My goddaughter, Maren, LOVED these pages! She RAVED and RAVED about them! So I decided to FINISH THEM before I moved on to the next project! (Anyone else have an entire room of half-finished projects?!)  Sigh.  Here's what I came up with...
I ABSOLUTELY ADORE the banner...and I even have that die...somewhere...had for at least...uh-hum...a year or more! Guess I will be looking for it!
Had to be able to get some journaling in so I made one of the larger pics a pocket! They are busy pages but then, so was the subject! On another note...I got a few other good photos in the last few days. Today...I caught Bad Cat sunbathing and got some close ups...

and then, Thursday evening, I happened to sit in a different spot to read-and this was the view from our living room...yes, that's the OCEAN in the far right between the rooftops and the horizon....
Now.  Gotta go clean up the Magic Kingdom since Tinker Bell never seems to show up when I need her!
Until next time, happy stamping and scrapping. Blessings, Sharon

All things personal...

Fair warning: I am on a "rant" today! A "Sharon fit" the size of at least a Category 4--ok, I'll be honest-a 5.  Or more.  There's no art project involved here-it's strictly health-related today.  After I finish this, find my hormones, I WILL be scrapping. For now, I need to vent!

I also believe we go through things in life (pleasant and not so) in order to share them with others-to help them along their journey. (This is also the premise of Stephen Ministry but I won't go there for now).  So-for what it's's my world today...

In Jan. I had my annual physical.  All was well, so my doctor said. Until she called late one afternoon and told me my pap smear was abnormal.  I needed to see an ob-gyn and have a colposcopy (which is basically looking at the cervix and, if abnormal cells are seen, then a biopsy is done.  "Hold on." I said. "How does that biopsy compare to an endometrial biopsy?" to which she said: "Oh, it's not nearly that bad. And they aren't going to do the endometrial biopsy. That's not what's needed" (her words!)  So I chose a doctor out of the three she offered.  I spent the next two months going around with them.  There was an entire litany of incompetent mess ups with just trying to get an appointment where I finally decided that, no matter how good the doctor may be, they weren't touching me. If they can't get information and appointments right-how were they going to (competently) care for me? 
 I called my doctors office. I asked for a second referral to an ob-gyn who had been her third choice and a number of women spoke highly of.  I also asked that a copy of my pap smear be mailed to me. No problem. They did. When I got it, I realized I had been told "half of the story". My doctor did not reveal the entire contents of the report.  I was LIVID.  To her credit, she did return my call the same day. She did apologize: "I was more concerned about the part I discussed with you than the part I didn't-but I should have mentioned both.  I'm sorry."  Come to find out, however,  either she didn't pass pap smear report reading 101, or simply didn't want to tell me, but when I made it to the second ob-gyn on Monday she was all prepared to do TWO BIOPSIES. The colposcopy on the cervix due to the squamous cells that were seen, and the dreaded endometrium biopsy due to the abnormal glandular cells on the pap smear (my physician had told me about the glandular cells-therefore she  SHOULD HAVE KNOWN that the endometrium biopsy was what they were going to do!)  Even though I had to wait 2 weeks for my appointment, NO ONE bothered to tell me that they were going to do both biopsies. NO ONE took the time to call me and say, "Hey, and ENDOMETRIUM BIOPSY hurts like h-e-double hockey sticks-take something STRONG" or, better yet, call something in. Nope. Nada. Nothing.  The first time I had that procedure, it was a male physician. I waited 2 hours in his waiting room. No one said anything then, either, and I was in extreme pain to start with! This a FEMALE. When she mentioned those two words --her next words were "You've had one before, haven't you? I can tell by the look on your face"  I said yes, I have, and it hurts like h-e-double hockey sticks.  SHE AGREED and yet...she was ready to do it anyway without anything for pain??????????????  I don't get it.  We rescheduled the procedures for yesterday.  I had taken two Aleve and asked for an rx of Halcion (an anxiety med I take prior to dental treatment-works like a charm).  My husband went with me.  When he started toward the door with me I was told "HUSBANDS ARE NOT ALLOWED BACK HERE. WE WILL COME AND GET HIM WHEN SHE TALKS TO YOU."  I informed the nurse, very calmly, that yes, he was coming with me or I was walking out.  Plain and simple.  "I HAVE TO ASK THE DR." Ok-fine! Do it."  Before I cleared the exam room door, in came my husband!  And yes, the procedure hurt EVERY BIT as much as I had remembered.  Personally, I think it is an inhuman one and should not be done in an office with an alert patient. It will NEVER be done on me again, just sayin'!

So---why do I say all this? Simply that:

1) DO NOT TRUST YOUR DOCTOR TO BE YOUR ADVOCATE.  Get copies of ALL your reports, records, etc.  READ them. RESEARCH. Then ASK QUESTIONS until you are satisfied.

2) REMEMBER-THEY ARE THERE TO SERVE YOU! You hired them- YOU CAN FIRE THEM.  Don't want to let my husband be with me to offer comfort and support? Fine. My old ob-gyn never had a problem with it-my dentist doesn't---I will find someone who CAN MEET MY NEEDS! 

3) "MD" after their name does not mean "GOD".  They are not the know all-end all.  They are human.  They do make mistakes. YOU KNOW YOUR BODY.  You live with it 24/7.  They are simply PRACTICING medicine (yeah-ever wonder why its called "a practice?!"  AND IT'S YOU they are practicing on--if lucky, they'll get it right! If you're not comfortable, go with that gut feeling...and remember Item #.

4) IF THEY AREN'T LISTENING...FIND SOMEONE ELSE!  For two years now, I have been saying I've had a hormone imbalance.  I'm tired, achy...yada yada yada.  No one listened.  I've been told everything from "You're depressed" to "it's just pre-menopause and it's only going to get worse before it gets better..." (yep-that was the answer from my current md. ) I went to a new practitioner for retesting of food allergies due to the onset of the on-going gall bladder issues (I discovered (translate: drs. didn't know-food allergies and gall bladder issues go hand in hand).  She actually READ her intake forms.  She ASKED about my being tired, achy, yada, yada.  She said, "Let's test for hormone imbalance, Vit. D and thyroid since we're taking blood anyway." Fine by me.  Lo and behold...the food allergies are great-yeah, wheat, gluten still an issue, but low issue. Lots of used to be allergies GONE  : )  --- the hormones--are all messed up! Vit. D way low...and thyroid out of whack because the other two are! DUH?! What have I been saying for two years?  And, guess what? Hormone imbalance leads to....GALL BLADDER ISSUES!!!! Try the homeopathic remedies for 2 mo.---the gall bladder will most likely settle down.  Ok.  In one week---I am seeing improvement with the gall bladder.  Of course, the "new" ob-gyn doesn't like the word "HOMEOPATHIC"--(natural remedies) wants to give me the synthetic crap.  Nope. I was on no less than 6 rx's from the other idiot doctors not listening. I stopped. I felt 1,000 times better---because---their so-called magic medicines were, when I read the side effects---simply EXACERBATING the symptoms I was taking them for! I padded their pocket with co-pays, the drug companies were making a killing and when I complained, they just wanted to give me another rx?! VICIOUS CYCLE.  I am not playing no mo'.  I hope you can *hear* what I am trying to say and that my suffering will help someone else struggling.

So-what's next?  From my reading, if one or more of the biopsies show anything, based on my research,  it's "try this procedure, watch and wait and then, if something else pops up, try this and watch and wait...." Not this girl.  It's going to be get it out and get it gone so I can go back to LIVING a normal life!
Thanks for letting me vent!  Now, I am off to find my hormones!  Until next time, happy stamping and scrapping! Blessings, Sharon

Wednesday, March 16, 2011


Hi my few faithful followers! I just wanted to let you know that no, I haven't abandoned my blog.  Just dealing with some health issues right now that are taking a lot more time and energy than I care to admit.  We had our groupie meeting last night and Theresa taught some *awesome* pages so I  may (no promises) at least get those posted before the week-end.  Trust me, I'd rather be working on things to post than all this other! Stay tuned. Thoughts and prayers are appreciated! Blessings, Sharon

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Happy Birthday on St. Patty's Day!

Had a request for a friend who has birthday on St. Patty's Day this is what I came up with.  Background paper is the Happy Birthday song with the person's name--the bagpiper is a Sassy Cheryl's image (too cute I think!), and the shamrock is from Close to My Heart.  Forgive the poor lighting! a *little* extra embellishement when the "So Lucky" stamp had a tiny smudge.  A shamrock covered it right up and no one (well, almost no one...!) will ever know! 
Until next time, happy stamping and scrapping.
Blessings, Sharon 

Monday, March 7, 2011

Home Grown!

HOW cute is this?!  This is *one* out of the "bunch"!  There are many more that need to be embellished! Theresa for loaning me her punch this afternoon (I promise to be careful! I, um, have some super powers evidently when it comes to craft supplies...and breaking them!).  These will be filled with treats for Easter.  Thanks, too, to Karen, a fellow Close to My Heart consultant who gave  me a great deal on the "Bunny Love" stamp set and shipped it like super fast (I ordered it on Sat-she's in FL--it was in my mailbox today!  How'd she do that? I *meant" to order it from CTMH in my last order--put in a wrong code by mistake--so Karen was kind enough to play let's make a deal!)   In case you are wondering...I used CTMH sunset cardstock (perfect carrot color-thanks, BB ladies for the advice on that as well!), and pear for the leaves. Stamped the sentiment in sunset...the bunny well, I wanted different colors *fast*--so I used a kaleidoscope multicolored pad (creole spice)  vs. the sponge dauber method.  I really wanted to wrap some twin around the carrot and attach the tag...but it was next to impossible to get it to stay on the tapered surface and since there are so many to do--I decided on the easy way out-just add a twine bow! I ran the pear paper for the "leaves" through the crimper first and my paper shredder second. That was an EASY way to make them.  I then punched two small circles-one solid and one with a smaller hole in the center... which I ran through the Xyron sticker machine.  I then "fed" eight 6" strips of green into the "donut" shaped circle and secured the ends.  The solid circle I put over that side so it had a finished appearance when you opened the carrot...
7uy6ujhy (pardon me- that's not a secret code-it's just a cat wanting to be fed walking across the computer key board...)
The petal die I used for the carrot shape (Theresa gets credit for the idea!) is from Stampin Up-get yours from Theresa:  When I ran to her house to get the punch, I stopped at that WM store and got some goodies to use this same die for some ladies tea party favors...I am thinking victorian paper, some moss, a small pot, a little potting soil, a package of seeds...hmmm...but then....I also got some chocolate foil-wrapped eggs and thinking a nest with a little bird and some leaves would be pretty, too.  But then...some daisies and another stem of flowers called to me, WHO KNOWS what I will come up with! Gotta finish "cooking the carrots" first though! Right now, I'd better feed the cats that are driving me crazy!  Until next time, happy stamping and scrapping. Blessings, Sharon

Saturday, March 5, 2011

Oh, pleeaaa-zzze Martha--can you make it any harder?!

Ok. I have been working today--cleaned 4 rooms, 4 loads of laundry-still have to remake the bed. I was taking a break. I've been through all my "normal" I decided to hop on over to Martha's page. You know-that crazy lady that does everything over the top and has a staff of God only knows how many behind the scenes that actually DOES the work-?!  Anyway---her site.  I clicked on the glittered egg video. I have a lot of her glitters. I splurged one day at Michaels. The only ones I've used were one red and all the clear so thought maybe this would be pretty!  Her "craft guru" was telling how to do polka dot glittered eggs. Ok. So I *THOUGHT* I had that figured out---I mean MY LIGHTBULB went on the minute she said it.  But wait---oh no-if it doesn't take 10 gazillion steps and's not MARTHA...! She says...take a pencil, dip the eraser in white glue. Dot onto egg. Then apply glitter and, I assume-let dry. I quit watching at the dip the pencil eraser in white glue part....Can you make it any harder Martha?! I can see it now. There's wet glue here-and then glitter-turn egg, smudge glue and glitter-now you have streak and smears instead of pretty polka dots...toss egg out. Or throw at computer screen...get new egg.  Repeat process--only now you have second color glitter mixed in with smudges from the first you couldn't get off your hands and face and the glue is leaving cruddy black gluey marks...Give me a break!    Here's my version-not tried it---yet---but tell me this wouldn't work and be 1,000 times easier...
1. Take egg.
2. Apply GLUE DOTS.
3.Sprinkly on glitter.
PRESTO! GLITTERED EGG! DONE!  10 seconds or less-wanna bet? How easy-peasy is that? Get a grip, Martha!  And fix your *awful* punches while you're at it (she must be related to Tim Holtz!)  Let me know if you try her way or my way-and how it works. Me? I gotta get back to cleaning. Sheesh. The woman gave me a headache! Until next time-staying away from Martha-and happy stamping and scrapping! Blessings, Sharon ps/she had a cute finger puppet bunny Easter card-the rest of them? My goddaughter did better at age 4?!
pss/I would also venture to suggest that, given that they are quite flexible, you could use Close to My Heart rubber stamps to STAMP designs on eggs as well. THAT I might have to try when hubby gets back from the grocery! ; )

Friday, March 4, 2011

Carrots, Cats, Crab Soup & St. Patty's Day Cards!

Whew! I am worn out just thinking about all that!  It's been a BUSY but productive day in the Stamp Queen's kingdom today!  First up...I decided to work on the carrots I promised to make as Easter treats for the preschool director.  28 of them....and then some more will go to my husband's office for sale.  They are not embellished-but the carrots themselves are put together.  I had help, of course.  There was a little black rascally "rabbit" in the carrot patch--funny thing, tho-his ears are a little too short?! In the middle of carrot production (slowed by the keeper of the leaves--he decided that sitting on my "grass" was a good thing!),

 I had to run to the Oak Island Restaurant to try and get a bowl of this...the item on the RIGHT...they SOLD OUT yesterday before I could get any--they told me to be there when they opened at 11 this morning if I wanted to be sure to get some! The line was 3 deep at 11:10 and EVERYONE was ordering it!  It was nice of them to feature it--and I remembered to get pics of the restaurant, etc. and even got one of the blue ribbon winner sampling their version...the verdict? While their's was was a little thin and my hubby thought the onion in it tasted a little burned.  Hmmm. I did have to pick through some crab shell as well but it was good.  The red pepper in it was just right so it had just enough "zing".

Then since the mailman kindly brought my SO LUCKY Close to My Heart stamp set, I went to work on St. Patty's Day cards.  Here's what I came up with:

Maybe tomorrow I will try and post the pics with the inside of the cards! Blogger and my photo programs are fighting me tooth and nail. It's time for some refreshment and relaxation.  Maybe one of my many helpers will fetch and serve some for me...
somehow...I doubt it! Lol!
Until next time, happy stamping and scrapping! Blessings, Sharon

Thursday, March 3, 2011


Love is.  The newlyweds are only about to celebrate their first anniversary...and I am *just now* getting their wedding present done! Ahhh, I've said before, let the celebration linger...Got the shadow box frame at Michaels, used the Wings Close to My Heart papers and the Find Your Style stamp set (butterfly, Beautiful, Love) and the Journey set (just the word "is" at the bottom). Of course I used Pop-Dots-in real life that butterfly is layered twice and looks like it's in flight!  And the photos are layered and pop-dotted as well to give them some extra dimension.  I had a heck of a time deciding what to do with the photos--I liked my page layout (several posts back)--but the "gap" in the middle of the smaller pictures didn't set well with me for the framed page.  I liked the "nip" in the corner of the photos that I created with my Stampin' Up punch (I think it's ticket corner?) and  I had put brads at the corners-but that was too much...sigh. What to do? I now had holes all over my base page from the brads!  I cut off the top portion, adhered it to another base sheet, and layed my photos out closer together. That's ALL it needed! Leave it alone, Sharon!  So I think it's ready for me to clean the glass one more time, adhere the page to the back of the frame and ship it off...
Gotta say a "thank you" here to Theresa. Yet again-she saved my sanity!  I think know I am going to go quite insane dealing with health issues and doctors and not getting "all the facts"---she and my husband deserve medals! I may make them some, too! It's all going to work's all in His hands...they keep reminding me of that!  For now, I'd better go get ready for work!  Until next time, happy stamping and scrapping! Blessings, Sharon

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

God is good...

Ok.  So I threw a "Sharon fit" with Him last night.  And I put out a prayer request before that even.  You see, the test result (mid-Jan.) was "abnormal."  Need another test. Need another dr. to do another test. Hurry up and wait...only to have said test not happen as planned.  I am a Type-A personality. I worry.  I also buried a husband with cancer.  If something isn't right-I don't care that 99.9% of the time the second test is normal.  I want to KNOW and I want to know NOW.  So finding out the test wasn't going to happen tomorrow...that I was faced with another 2-month wait with that dr. (whom I knew nothing about)--and an even longer one with a highly-recommended was the last straw yesterday.  I lost it.  Totally.  Today...Linda, from my primary care physician's office, called.  I have an appointment in 2 weeks...with the physician I thought I was going to have to wait 3-4 months to see!  I don't know how she did it---but she did.  I am not sure what I will do to thank them--but I will do something! They listened.  They heard my frustration-not to mention fear-and acted on it.  And I am appreciative.  Particularly to those around me who interceeded on my behalf.  Prayer works!  Maybe now I can go finish that scrapbook page.  Right after I thank Him one more time.  Have you...counted your blessings today? Hmmm...until next time, happy stamping and srapping. Blessings, Sharon