A few weeks ago I told you about an amazing opportunity I was given to attend one of Jeanne Oliver’s art retreats in Castle Rock, Colorado. The whole experience was uplifting and inspiring. I think the two things that impressed me most were how comfortable Jeanne made this star-struck girl feel and the quality and character of all the talented women who attended.
We were welcomed with mimosas and croissants while we all mingled and got to know one another.
From the beautiful studio to the art instruction to the lovely people, this getaway exceeded my expectations in every way.
During one of the breaks Jeanne led us on a walk down several of the trails they have created on their property.
I plan on making time and room in the budget some time in the future to attend another event in Jeanne’s Living Studio. I might share a piece or two of art I created while there. In another post. If I get brave enough.
I’m back from Jeanne Oliver’s amazing retreat and back to real life. What an incredible time I had at the art retreat and I will share stories and photos in an upcoming post.
I mentioned previously that our beloved house is now on the market and I would like to share photos of it with you. I have shown some of them in older posts as we completed projects but I have never shown my entire house.
The Living Room
French Doors leading to the stairs
Sitting Room leading to the Master Suite
Guest Bedroom #2
Back downstairs now in The Kitchen
The Dining Room
Laundry Room right off the kitchen
2nd room in Wine Cellar
Back of House
We have poured our heart and soul into this home for the past 22 years. We took it from a house in very poor condition that nobody wanted and turned it into a home that we have loved and enjoyed raising a family in. Although it’s sad to leave, we have been house hunting and have found a few smaller homes we like, one of which I know we will enjoy making our own.
I mentioned in my last post that I had some happy news to share. Well, I am getting ready to attend my very first art retreat and it happens to be at Jeanne Oliver’s brand new studio in Castle Rock, Colorado! The workshop is on art journaling, “all about unraveling your own story and creating authentic art that only you can tell.” I was blessed to win one of three spots that Jeanne gave away to celebrate the opening of their new studio. If you’ve ever taken any of Jeanne’s online courses you know how wonderful they are. If you haven’t, I recommend them to anyone who needs a creative boost. You can read more about their offerings here. When I get back I’m sure I’ll have photos and stories to tell. Until then…
I can’t believe it’s been five months since my last post. It has taken me until now to acclimate to our new situation and feel ready to share in detail all that has gone on in my world. Even though I haven’t posted or commented on other blogs I haven’t remained completely out of the loop. I have continued to read posts that I subscribe to as I’m able and the beauty and inspiration contained in them has been uplifting. We all go through stuff. The honesty and human spirit demonstrated in the blog world has been a source of comfort to me. What I’m about to share, I don’t share easily but I have decided (with full consent from my husband) to share this part of my journey with you. I share it now with hope for healing and the prayer support of my dear readers, but also with the hope that my transparency might in some way help others go through their “stuff”.
In October my husband of 35 years was diagnosed with early onset Alzheimer’s Disease (also known as younger onset). Gary is 55 years old and has worked as an accomplished, preferred respiratory therapist for over 30 years. He has now been taken off the job because of his illness and will not return to work. The devastating news has washed over both of us in waves. Gary has kept his wonderful sense of humor through it all, even joking about it at times. He is now taking advantage of his time off to enjoy his favorite pastime.
When we first got the news, anything blog-related seemed completely frivolous and I imagined I might stay away indefinitely. But I have come to realize that, not only do I miss the interaction with my readers and other bloggers, it is an important outlet for me creatively. So I have decided to build the time in to post once again. We have been making many changes in the way we live (diet, finances, spiritual life) that I will share with you in upcoming posts. I will also be sharing photos of our entire house that is now on the market as well as the direction I am going with my money-earning pursuits. I’ll share a bit of happy news as well! Thank you for listening, I look forward to connecting once again.
I would like to wish all of my readers Happy 2016! With the old year passed and the brand new year ahead I would like to thank you for reading, commenting, supporting and be-friending me and my blog in 2015.
When I wrote this post, little did I know how much I would cling to its message in the months to come. 2015 was a difficult year for our family in many ways, not the least of which was watching my daughter and son-in-law end their ten year marriage. Our family had never been touched by divorce in any significant way prior to this. It is a very painful experience for all involved. My heart still aches every time I think of them and their three children and try to accept that their family as we know it no longer exists. I know many of you have experienced the heart-wrenching pain of divorce as well and my heart goes out to you.
In late 2015 we received news regarding my husband’s health that overshadowed even the pain of the divorce. Though I can’t share all of it in detail, he has been on sick leave since October and we don’t know when he will return to work. Because of the unknown future of his work status, I have begun looking for a full time job. We will also be putting our house on the market this spring and downsizing to something with less maintenance (i.e. move-in ready).
I don’t want this to be a lengthy post full of bad news and woes, so please allow me to share with you what I believe. God can take even the most painful, negative experiences and turn them into good. We are trusting God and leaning on Him heavily to show himself strong on our behalf. We believe that God still heals today and we are asking him to heal my husband. I am going forward with plans to prepare for the future in any event but hope to someday share a good report with you on the wonderful things God has done. Trying to get a handle on my need to know what’s next. By yielding control and trusting God who holds my future, I can rest in the knowledge that He knows the desires of my heart and wants to lead me in the very best plan for me (us). His ways are higher than our ways. I put my faith in Him.