Thursday, May 01, 2008

No Time to Stamp....

I can't stand it. I've had no time to really 'git down and 'git dirty in the studio!!!! I am so busy that my time to decompress with stamping is severly limited. Do you know what that means? That means a very crabby Mommy is in residence!!

Actually, I have stamped a little bit. But it's a secret cuz I'm making stuff with stamps that won't be released until May! And ohhhhhhh, are you ever gonna love the stamps Verve is releasing in May! And I'm even playing with a few that will be released in JUNE! Lucky, lucky me! And lucky you, cuz you're gonna love them too! I just wish I could share with you what I'm making, but alas, Julee would have my head if I gave away her secrets too early! And I value my design team duties SO much that I'm gonna keep my lips zipped from here on out.

Instead, I'm gonna show you a boring ol' graduation card that I made for a friend that has a daughter graduating from the University of MN (the Golden Gophers). Nothing too special or outstanding, but since I haven't been stamping, I've got nothing cool to show you right now. I am hoping to get some done today and tomorrow, so maybe I'll have something to share tomorrow with you. Keep your fingers crossed.

In the meantime, a few of you have been clamoring for a personal update of our situation here at home. I have been shying away from getting too personal anymore for fear of not always being able to be "perky". As I've said before, I wear my heart on my sleeve, and I don't find it easy to appear "happy" or write "happy" if I'm not feeling it. And these days, one day can be great, the next can be a downer. It's just the nature of what we are going through I guess. So I've stuck to the basics of cardmaking and that's about it. I'm working on sparing you the "juicy" details!

With that said, here's a brief synopsis of what's been happening around here lately....

  • Doug is continuing to work at Caribou Coffee. He is working less than 20 hours a week and gets easily annoyed having to make "fru-fru" coffee drinks for all the ladies that come in to the store. He practically jumps across the counter and plants a big juicy kiss on the men who come in and ask for a straight black coffee!

  • As far as "real" jobs go, still no luck. He had a phone interview today with a station in another market. It's not in MN, but it's in a state of close proximity. He's got another job prospect in AZ as well. Our severance money has run out, so the tip jar on my blog will be going up soon. Just kidding. I can't tell you the panic I feel that we have no money outside my freelance money coming in (plus the paltry unemployment checks that should start soon). Seriously, unless you've ever faced this situation before, you cannot know the sheer panic, anxiety and worry that consumes you over how you will pay your bills or feed your family. We are not a family that lives in excess anyways, so cutting the budget is difficult at best. We don't buy expensive coffees every morning, we don't drink (much), we don't smoke, we don't have car payments, we don't have credit card debt (we're not big into credit cards), etc. The next cuts we are going to have make are cable and cell phones. We don't have a big cable package, so it's not like we can cut the premium channels to help cut the bill. Unfortunately, you sign multi year contracts when you sign up for these initial service, so to get out of our cell phone contracts it would cost us $700. Uhhhh, I don't think so. The other day Doug said to me "we need more Swiffers honey", and I'm like "Uh, the Swiffers are no longer in the budget dear, use a dust cloth". That's where we're at right now. I've already switched my expensive hair products out in exchange for the drug store variety (although my good friend Sharon recently came over with a gift of two cans of my beloved Redken "GUTS" volumn spray foam that I have been using for years--is that not true friendship?????). I was driving in the car today thinking that this summer there will be no flowers for my flower pots on the deck. THAT reality made me get all teary-eyed because flowers bring me such happiness, especially the summer variety. I usually fill my deck with beautiful flowers every summer but this summer things have to be different. We just can't afford it. They have to go. I'm not willing to charge the flowers to a credit card just so I can have my flower fix. No way.

  • My terminology class: I am in the middle of taking an online terminology class via the local community college. It is so fun! As fun as you can imagine learning the root meanings of a ton of greek and latin medical terms would be! There are a few jobs in the hospital ER that are opening soon and the woman who's hiring for those positions told my friend to tell me to reapply this week with the updated terminology class information on my application! I am SO excited to have an opportunity to interview for a job in the hospital! If i get the job, it will be 40 hours a pay period, which means it would be a benefit eligible position! Woo-hoo! Please add me to your prayer list that I am able to secure this position and that it be God's will for me.

  • My brother-in-law is doing well. He had his first chemo treatment a few weeks ago and is scheduled to have his next on May 8th. I have been blessed with a ticket to fly out there to be with them next Wednesday, May 7th, so I can be with Jayne and Ken at the hospital for the next round of chemo and it's after effects in the days following. I plan on helping Jayne out with whatever she needs done around the house. This is not a "vacation", this is an act of service to a family in need. I will stay for a week. Ken is feeling pretty well and so far, his weight and blood levels all look good. He has some bone pain, but since the cancer is in his bones, that's to be expected. He's such a strong man, I really look at him with awe. He hasn't had one minute of self pity, and I'm fairly certain I could not be so brave given the bleak outlook. I'm sure I will be the one blessed while I'm there and not the other way around.
Well, I think that's everything that needs updating. Thank you so much for caring and asking how things are going. My new mantra lately has been "good things are going to happen" because I believe in the power and love of Jesus Christ and I believe he has the power to reign his blessings down on us. The part I'm working on accepting is the "in his time" part. His ways are not my ways, and his time is not my time. That's a hard thing to grasp, isn't it? There are just some things in this world that we will not be able to understand, and the heartache and struggles of this past year are the thing I've had the hardest time wrapping my arms around. From this cup of suffering will come good things. In His time. In His way.

God's blessings,



  1. Amy, so glad to hear an update from you - from the real depths of life. I've been praying for you, your hubby and for your BIL too. You all sure are facing some huge challenges. I'm understanding a lot of what your saying too: we are planning a garage sale for next weekend hoping to sell some things to be able to pay some bills. (I used to just do this sort o fthing for fun or to get some splurge money - now I really need it!) I was even jumping on blogs to see if I could win any blog candy because I've not been able to get new art thihngs for a long time now. sheesh! How silly that sounds when I say it out lous! Ha! Anyway, We've cut back big time - getting back to basics I call it in my happy voice. (I love that you too are thinking positve thoughts!) This can't last forever and God is good - He will see you through. You are such a neat lady, you sure deserve good things. Thanks for sharing your heart and your art!

  2. I love this card. So cute for a graduate. The notebook paper look is perfect.

    I was glad to read an update on things. You are blessed with such a great outlook. Keep your eyes on the Father. He loves you and will see you through this time. My mother use to say that the great thing about the Valley is there is not where to go but up. Always remember that...."God is close to the broken hearted soul." Psalms 34:18. Thanks for sharing your life and love of stamping with us.

  3. Thanks for the update Amy. I really enjoy checking your blog for card inspirations and for the daily kind of inspiration as well! Your family is in my prayers!

  4. Amy, good things ARE going to happen! I just know it. Keep your chin up. I'm pulling for you.

  5. Hey there. You don't know me...not even a little bit. I live in NC and stamp as often as possible. I just wanted you to know that I appreciate your blog...your work is BEAUTIful.

    I appreciate even more that you use this blog for more than that. Know that we are praying for your family. Know that God will never allow ANYTHING that you can't bear. He sees you right where you are and knows what you have need of even before you ask.

  6. Amy, I'm glad to hear an update, and I'm praying for you, Sweetie!

  7. thanks so much for sharing what has been going on. i really like the grad card too, even though you think it's "nothin' special".

    i'm excited with you about the hospital job prospect, as well as the opportunities for Doug.

    you have sweet friends too, and i'm gld you're being upheld by them! thanks for letting us in cyberland uphold you too.

  8. Love your grad card! Love the way you did the sentiments.

    Seeds! Amy seed your flower pots. It's a little slower but only a buck or two! Start tomorrow, and they'll bloom for summer! Hang in there girl.

  9. Be well and have a safe trip. You and your family are in my prayers.
    Sara in WI

  10. What a fun card Amy & beautiful flowers!

    I have nominated you for an award check out my blog for details.

  11. That definitely wasn't "wearing your heart on your sleeve," just the facts very eloquently shared. Thanks for letting us know what is going on. I'll keep you in my thoughts and prayers. Best of luck with the ER job (of course, I've been an ER nurse for 16 years and I'm wondering if I should wish you luck on that one- teeheehee, just kidding, it's a super tough job but I think you'd be great as a HUC)! Take care!

  12. Big Big Big Big Hugs to you! God is very creative and I know He will lavish you with all you need. I certainly know exactly how you feel. 2 Cor 1:3 Praise be to God the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of compassion and the God of all comfort. (that is off the top of my head, so it might not be exact-but that verse always brings me so much comfort) God Bless You!! :) You are such an amazing woman.

  13. Amy, I had to chuckle when I read this..."a very crabby Mommy is in residence".....wouldn't that make an awesome rubber stamp?!

  14. You are in my prayers. God will bring you through all this. I hope you get time to do some stamping and relaxing. I go in my room when I need to and listen to Christian music as I play. I'm praying that you will have time to do something like that soon.

  15. ((((Amy))))
    These are scarey times you are going through. But as you said, "From this cup of suffering will come good things. In His time. In His way." You are so right. I walked through the fire for the past several years and as horrible as it was at times I wouldn't trade it for anything. God brought me through it and I'm a stronger person with far more Christ-like inner beauty. God provides for even the little sparrows and He will provide for you. I'm praying for you today and every day.

    Is your mom doing okay?

  16. Oh Amy, I hadn't read this post before ... I'm guilty of skimming the pictures in Reader sometimes. Anyway, I'm glad for the update. It helps to know how and what to pray!


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