Wednesday, January 2, 2019

Welcome to the New Year!

Hello my friends!
 It has been quite awhile since I have done a blog post, and I thought I should put one out here to check in with all of my blog friends.
The past two years there have been many unfortunate life changes for us.I won't go into all of it;I just wanted to say,that it finally took it's toll emotionally and that is part of the reason for my absence. 
So,in continuing to heal my soul,I will be not as present for awhile. I need to step back and catch my self up on some needed "me time". I will continue to visit and comment when I can.Just know, that you are all never far from my thoughts and I'll be back when the time is right.thank you so much for understanding.💓

So with out further ado...
This post is going to start off with a bit of art. Specifically some more of the Artist Trading Coins I had fallen in love with. 
A few friends and I did a 3 for 3 swap of the coins,as well as made our own envelopes for traveling. I must say, my envies were not as artsy as the others,but I still had fun making them!
 Up first are mine I created 
 Looks like the desk of a mad artist!
 3 of the 4 envies from the gals,one was caught up in the post for awhile.
and here are all of the coins I received and my little studio tree where I hung them


  This was really a fun swap and i just love each and every one of these special mini artworks!
Thank you ladies! 💟

  coins from Astrid Mclean

 I just love this saying,I am striving towards this for 2019!
 Also, arriving in the post around the same time was this gorgeous designed and created handbag,by Theresa Martin. Theresa is a mixed media artist as well and combines her collage work with her fiber art and creates some of the coolest,most unique pieces I have ever seen!

 and then there is this atc Theresa made! I just adore it!
thanks so much my friend!


Aside from the art there have been other things happening...

After Thanksgiving,I flew out to Washington state to be with my son Lenny for awhile.
There had been quite a few changes in Len's life over the past couple of years,major changes.You may remember my speaking of Neda,his wife. They separated shortly after our cross-country trip to see them and divorced amicably last January.They are still very close and care for one another deeply. 
In between his job,and working on his new home,Len met a real sweet gal on a dating site,named Flora.
They hit it off immediately and fell in love instantly and began planning a future together,one that even included grandchildren!We couldn't have been happier and more thrilled for them!
Around the same time I had my neck problems and surgery,Flora was experiencing terrible stomach pains that her general practitioner kept attributing to gas. Len insisted on her seeing a specialist and it was determined that at her young 32 years,she had stage 4 ovarian cancer.
  Len stepped up and took care of Flora as if they had been together forever.He brought Flora home and cared for her so lovingly.Len did all the chores,cooking,taking to her to appointments,getting her outside for exercise and to see nature and breathe in the beautiful air.He would stay up all hours with Flora,giving her comfort in any he could,and then had her aunt and uncle come stay with them for a while to be close to her.
After exhausting every avenue of medicine;sadly,and tragically the cancer ravaged Flora and she passed peacefully at the end of September,the day after Len said goodbye to her. 
As we can only imagine,this was devastating for Len.
 Flora was originally from Taiwan and so her parents came to receive her and take her back with them.Len and Flora's best friend,Alicia are planning a memorial for Flora,this spring.I hope he finds the closure he needs then.
So my visit with my son was needed for both of us.Len and I get along so well and we spent some wonderful quality time together. We laughed and cried and discussed life in general. 
  So while Len did the cooking,
Momma did his mudding and trim painting.
Obviously by this photo,you can see Len isn't much of a camera guy! LOL
 One of the dishes Len made, Middle Eastern kabobs,with Rosemary potatoes and jasmine rice.
While Len was working-heehee
 I did a bit of decorating,using only vintage ornaments, holly and other fresh greens from Len's yard
  some of Len's artwork from first grade I had brought with me.
 and Flora's origami birds she had made.
And now I would like to share some of Len's progress on his place as it just blows me away how talented he is and what he has done.

The colored lighting is all designed and installed by Len.He has the coolest touch pad that controls all the lights in the home,and you can make them any color!
yes,Win,I soooo had alot of fun with this!

I love the stairway he redid~the cablework is fab!

Len has literally taken down each wall and replaced those with new drywall and is building his own trimwork.
 Len designed and built ALL of these cabinets himself,from scratch,teaching himself from YouTube
 Back in the kitchen,he is cooking my favorite~Asian pancakes! Yum!!!
 He even took me to a salon and hung out an hour while I had my hair cut!
on and on right?thanks for letting me brag on about my son, I couldn't be happier or prouder!
We had a great time together and I know he enjoyed it as well because he told me so at the airport...omgosh,I am crying all over again thinking about his words! lol

Oh wait, did I say I could not be happier or prouder?
Did you see the beautiful purple artwork above?
 this piece as well as the gorgeous canvas below were sent to me by my beautiful soon to be daughter in law,Hannah.

 The week before Christmas,Lindsey and Hannah bought a house after moving to Texas,3 months ago.
The day they closed(literally 5 days beforeChristmas-yikes!) and unlocked the doors of their new home for the first time,my Lindsey romantically proposed to Hannah and she accepted. So this Mom is proud as a peacock right now!
They make such a beautiful couple and they compliment each other so!
and the best part,is Lindsey blames me for Hannah's love of art! heehee and Hannah has asked me to help her with the wedding when they plan the date! I can't wait!!

Here we are at the end of my post and I would just like to take a minute to share with you,my gratitude for you all,and how blessed I feel to have you in my life!(even if it is only via the net!)

Sending wishes out to you all for a New Year full of blessings~filled with Joy, Love,Happiness and Peace!
Love to you,
Jackie ")


theresa mARTin said...

Such a lovely post Jackie. Good idea to take time to replenish. Wishing you Peace and a Happy New Year ahead.

Zsuzsa Karoly-Smith said...

I was looking for your blog on my blog roll, Jackie, just to say Happy New Year, thinking it would be somewhere at the bottom as you haven't posted for a while and I couldn't find it - and there it was right at the very top as you'd just posted this! So sorry to learn about Flora - I must say your beautiful son, Lenny, is one of a kind to have nursed her through her illness even though they hadn't known each other that long. He really does deserve to be happy and I so wish that he'll find happiness eventually - and I'm sure he will! Best wishes to your other son as well - what a lovely couple and they have cats!!! I absolutely adore your Artist Trading Coins - they look so beautiful and inspiring! Sometimes taking time out is necessary for some soul-searching, until things settle and you can see a clear path ahead - just have faith - in yourself and in your journey! Thinking of you in 2019! xx

sirkkis said...

thank you a lot for your post full of deep feelings - both sorrow and happiness. You can be very proud of your talented sons who give you joy and delight.
I wish you all the best for the year 2019. Will it be full of love, healty
and blessing 💕🍀😇
Love, Sirkkis

Roosterhead Designs said...

Such an amazing post Jackie!!!
Thanks for all the photo's and sharing your life and heart with us~
Life ebbs and flows with both sadness and joy; and we learn and grow
in both - don't we~
Wishing you a blessed 'sabbatical' and when the time is right I know
we will see you creating again!
For now I am away (for business) and not crafting for a month or so.
Loving hugs to you, karen o

Tracey@Hotchpotchcreations said...

(((Jackie))) such sadness and joy all within one post. For those sad moments i'm more than sure you have been a great healer with support, love and keeping it all going and for those joyous occasions sharing your love and affection. You are an amazing Momma. With all that heavy load no wonder you need time to recharge and gather your thoughts.
Whilst you take that break remember there are good people around thinking about you and here when ever you call.
Take good care of yourself wishing you a Happier 2019 where dreams become reality.
Biggest of Hugs Tracey xx
P.S Beautiful ATCoin art, created, shared and delivered xx

Bleubeard and Elizabeth said...

Those coins are amazing. It is something I never got into, but I applaud the ones you made. They are so pretty. I love how you added the ones you received to your little table tree.

Theresa Martin is a person I would love to get to know. I was so impressed with her sewing skills and the choice of fabrics she used. I love that she also sewed on the ATC. Sewing paper to paper is about all I do.

My heart went out to your son. Such an incredibly sad story and outcome, too. I know how devastating that can be, and what a toll it takes on even your daily life.

Your son has IMPECCABLE tastes. His home is to die for. It is unbelievable and I love the modern minimalist look it has. Your decorations were perfect, and definitely NOT over the top, which would have looked out of place in his home. I can see why you are proud of him.

I want to once again wish you a healthy art filled 2019. I totally understand your decision to step back and find "me" time. You will know when it is the right time for you to return. Until then, I'll be here patiently waiting.

Valerie-Jael said...

You had a very full year with happy and some not so happy experiences, and all that takes time to settle and heal. You have lovely kids and they are doing well. The photo of you with your son is gorgeous, and great that you were able to visit him at his lovely home. I hope 2019 will be a good year for you, with health and happiness for you and yours, and keep on making your beautiful art, but allow yourself time to heal. BIG hugs, Valerie

June Walker said...

Happy New Year Jackie! I hope you have a really good year in 2019!

Win Dinn said...

Oh my dear, dear friend - you have been on a roller coaster year in 2018. I know that we need to have the darkness in order to see and appreciate the light, but sometimes it is totally overwhelming. Little wonder that you will take more time to step back and regroup.

And yes, I definitely have light envy...I can just see you playing with all that lovely colour. :D

Sending you all the absolute best wishes for a blissful and joyous 2019, dear one. xo

Dorthe said...

Oh Jackie, so so sad, that Flora should die from that terrible sickness, I`m so sad for her, and your son, them just having found each other. He really showed his love, helping her like that, and giving her all the care he could.
Your coins are gorgeous, dear, so wonderful, I love what you have done, there are so much joy in them , and all the swappers- love Astrids coins , too - but they are all amazing !!
Now you take care of yourself, my dear, relax, and get all well again, and hope for your son, too . By the way you look so sweet with the short hair . Hugs and love , Dorthe

froebelsternchen said...

Dear Jackie!
I am sitting with tears in my eyes! Sadness and joy all within this one post.
You are such a happy mother with your sons! They are both wonderful men!
With all that going on it is just necessary for you to recharge and gather your thoughts and feelings.
I love the coins and all the art you shared - unique and so beautiful - gorgeous!
I send my thoughts to you my friend!
Wishing you a much better 2019 in all ways!
Best wishes and best thoughts for you and your lovely family and a hug to Chum !


Redanne said...

Oh Jackie, my heart goes out to your and your family, you have (all) had to deal with such a lot, I am not surprised you need a break. I am so sorry to hear of Flora's death but your wonderful son is a real hero in my eyes, I hope he is able to take time to heal his heart and mind after such a tragedy.

Congratulations to your son and his fiance, I hope they have a wonderful life together, a lovely bit of happiness for your family.

I am quite new to ATCoins, and mine are not anything like as beautiful as yours but I keep trying - lol ! That was a great swap, so many beautiful coins given and received!

Please know that I am thinking of you and wishing you all that you wish for yourself and your family in 2019. Take care my friend. Big hugs, Anne xxx

Kate Yetter said...

I love that you took the time to brag on both your sons! That is a Mama's job. How wonderful that you and your son were able to spend time together, comforting each other. I love the little decorating touches that you left around his home, especially the origami birds made by Flora. He is certainly very talented and his home projects are gorgeous!!
So many beautiful artist trading coins. I love the vibrant colors on these miniature pieces. Looks like you received some amazing coins in return.

I hope that you receive the much needed rest and 'you time.' Blogging can be so time consuming and sometimes living life is more important. I look forward to seeing more of your art when you decide to return to blog land, friend. Take care of yourself.

Julie Ann Lee said...

Dear Jackie, my heart goes out to you and to Len. What a fine young man who is so blessed in having you as a mother -that bond of love, companionship and empathy is so special and such a support when our lives are touched by tragedy. Make sure you take all the time you need to heal, my dear friend, both physically and emotionally. You had quite a year. Those ATCs and the gorgeous bag are a lovely splash of colour in a wintry world - I'm a huge fan of Theresa's work since we swapped dolls together. There is always something so life affirming about you, Jackie and all that you share. You are precious. Take great care of yourself as you do of others. May 2019 bring you peace, joy and creative fulfillment. xxx

Julie Ann Lee said...

I'm also so thrilled for Lindsey and Hannah and wish them every happiness together. I love Hannah's beautiful canvas! A Happy 2019 to you and all your lovely family - not forgetting Chum of course. xxx

Lys said...

Such sad and happy news, Jackie... I wish the best for you and your family in 2019. You still find resources in creativity and I look forward to seeing your projects.

Mary said...

What an amazing story you have shared. My heart goes out to you and your son.

I love the artist trading coins. I had never seen these before. Wonderful!


butterfly said...

Good grief - what a rollercoaster time you and your family have experienced. So heartbreaking for Len - and so important and necessary for you to have that time together over Christmas. Congratulations to Lindsay and Hannah though - you'll have your hands full when it comes to the wedding planning, I should think. Maybe you should rope Len in to do the lighting. But do take all the time you need to heal your soul (and your own health), and be present for your sons as they experience life's highs and lows... that's the most important thing.

Having said that, I'm delighted to see that art is still a huge part of your life too. The ATCoins are just stunning - so full of vibrant colour - and great to see the ones you received in return, as well as all those other beautiful creations. Happy mail indeed. Take care.
Alison x

aimarii said...

I got tears in my eyes when I read your post to end. First were a lot of joy things and then..then very sad. I became without words.
How are you feeling now? I hope the time will give an consolation.♥

aimarii said...

Jackie - I hope you and your dearest are well.
I miss you.

Felix the Crafty Cat said...

Hi Jackie, I knew you were resting so hadn't wanted to bother you plus as you know we were away at the beginning of January and since then spent quite a bit of time sorting stuff for my parents. I feel really lucky to still have them at 90 and 91 they are doing really well but mum broke her hip last year and.......well you know how it is. It sounds like your year was full of mixed feelings too. I'm pleased to see things are picking up and you're getting round a little more. Loving your AT coins they are brilliant. Take care and lets hope for a happier year in 2019. Sending big hugs, Angela xXx

Anita Houston The Artful Maven said...

I'm sorry I missed this post last month. I pray life is going better for you friend. These coins are absolutely fabulous! I need to jump on that wagon. Truly gorgeous work. Hang in there.

Autumn Clark - SewPaperPaint said...

Dear Jackie, I too have been caught up in the never ending whirlwind that is life. I am so sorry for your son's loss and all that your family has suffered, but thankful that marriages go on and buildings are made and life has its ups mixed in with the downs. I think sometimes a reset and break are just what we need to put life into perspective. I miss your sweet and encouraging self and hope that you are on the up end of this all very soon. Big hugs, Autumn

Felix the Crafty Cat said...

Hi Jackie, missing you here. Hope life is settling down for you. Love Angela xXx

Sugar Lump Studios said...

Hi Jackie! I hope you are doing well and looking forward to spring.
Thank you for the kind words about Tucker, he is the most unusual cat I have ever owned.
Right now, he has learned how to open kitchen cabinets, and the other night kept getting on to the counter to do the upper's. I am going to need to get safety latches. LOL
thanks for your kind words on the arches and journal. Think spring!