Friday, April 25, 2008

Summer is a comin'

My very first dress. Of course there is a story behind this. This is supposed to be a tiered shirt that goes over a pair of capri's. The capri's are now the third tier of the dress since I messed them up so badly. I do have more material to make the capri's and will just so I can learn how to, but geesh, it's a lot harder than it looks, let me tell ya! I still have to fuss with the ruffle on the dress, but I am pretty proud of my first dress!

And of course all dresses must pass the twirlability test in our house!

Thursday, April 24, 2008

Too many bows?

Is there such a thing as too many bows? Nah! Here are all the bows that I have ammassed over the course of my clothing addiction for Katie. I have found some wonderful women on the loops that I belong too that have made these for us over the years. I always sell off the bows that go with the outfits, so you can only imagine how many bows there would be if I didn't do that. And I have gone to having 2 bows made because for some reason Katie's hair does much better in 2 pony's than one.

Here is Katie waiting for the bus! I bought this dress 2 years ago when I friend of mine went to the Hanna outlet for me! Then, last year when we went to the high scale outlet mall and ended up at a Mall in Westchester with a Hanna store, I bought the shorts that I thought matched it along with the socks. Well, they don't match exactly, but it's good enough for me! And see the bows? They were made to go with another outfit, but they went well enough for me with this one!

And I am still sewing. I am putting the finishing touches on another dress that I made. It started out as a shirt with capri's under it. I messed up badly on capri's (going to try again), but a good seamstress doesn't throw away her fabric, she just takes it and adds it to the dress. I am just adding the bottom ruffle and then going to take another crack at the capri's. It's going to be darn cute if I do say so myself! And I still have that Easter dress to finish! I WILL FINISH IT if it's the last thing I do! LOL!


Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Still sewing

Sorry I haven't been around. I have been busy trying to recover from the trip! I'ts definately taken a toll on my body. This is the first time we have gone somewhere since my back surgery and it was rough. Sitting in a car for 7 hours and then sleeping in a different bed. Not to mention all the running around I had to do when I got back. I still have several project out there in sewing land that I am trying to finish up. But, until I am done with those, here are some pictures from our trip!

For some reason Gillian felt the need to "kiss" all the animals! She asked me to take pics to send to her friends. 15 year olds sure can be weird!

Look at the size of that Hippo!

Katie all ready for her big day at the zoo!

Vegged out in front of a video in the car!

So there you have it, a snap shot view of our trip. I am almost finshed with my first dress/capri set so I better get moving while I have the time to sew!

Sunday, April 13, 2008


We are having a BLAST in DC! We got in yesterday and are visiting with Cheryl's brother. We drove down with Cheryl's mom and other than a small glitch of MIL not understand why Katie has to ride in a car seat, it went well. I have to admit that traveling with 2 kids almost 11 years apart is a challenge. Katie is asleep at 8:30PM and Gillian was busy text messaging her friends until the wee hours of the morning. Since MIL is paying for our hotel room, we are all in the same room. UGH and double UGH! But, it's been fun anyway.

Since I can't do a lot of walking, we drove from Springfield VA (where BIL lives) to the National Zoo. We got lost and I got some great pics from driving around the city. There is a metro station right across the street from our hotel, but I knew that I wouldn't be able to walk from the metro stop to the zoo and then walk around the zoo. I did that a few years ago and could barely do it, so I knew I wouldn't be able to do it. And because there are so many of us, we had to take 2 cars. Well, BIL got lost but it was fine with me! I got to see the Washington Monument, the Iwo Jima statue, some protesters downtown and lots of great sights in Georgetown. It was great! And of course there was the ZOO! I got some great pics (that I will DL when I get home) of the kids at the zoo. We saw the panda's, elephants, a HUGE hippo and lots of other animals. We really had a great time.

We got lost heading home, so I got to see some more sights then too! Tomorrow, Cheryl, Katie, MIL, BIL and his son are heading downtown on the metro to go to the Spy Museum while I go with Gillian and SIL to a great mall that has a Hanna Andersson store! I am so excited! An actual Hanna store. Good thing I saved a little of that money my grandpa left for me. I may end up taking the Metro downtown later to meet up with Cheryl and Katie and go on one of those tours, but we'll see how tired I am. Truth be told, the ride down was very unpleasant on my back and sleeping in a strange bed doesn't help either (and having a teenager tap, tap, tapping on her phone till all hours doesn't help either)

So, look for some great pics when we get back. I didn't think to bring the cord to upload....sorry! I will talk with you all when I get back on Tuesday. I am checking e-mal if you need to get ahold of me though!


Friday, April 11, 2008

More inner musings....reading

Although this one is less maudlin. I think there are going to be lots of nuggets coming out of my mind over the next few months.

Anyway, growing up, I always loved to read. I would go into a panic if there wasn't a book for me to read (and still do). Now that I have money (well kind of anyway) I always have a big stack of books next to my bed to get through.The library is my best friend! And I am always reading. I am the person who reads at stop lights when they are red (and have trained my 5 year old to tell me when the light turns green). I read whenever I can. Now, that doesn't mean that I don't do other things, but reading takes me to a place where nothing else can. Like Anna Quindlen states in her book, Living Out Loud, "I still read constantly: if my kids ever go into analysis, I'm sure they will say they don't really remember my face because it was always hidden by a book. Obviously this is in part because I like books. But another reason is that I like to be alone. I like to go deep inside myself and not be accompanied there by anyone else. But I am the oldest of 5 children (so am I), and when I was young, I had about as much chance of being alone as I did of being a lion tamer. Reading was for me then a way of lifting myself out of a crowded environment into a place where I could be by myself"

When I read this, it was like a light bulb went off in my head. I love the place that reading takes me to. Whether it's fiction or non-fiction, I love all things books. I used to make myself read a book cover to cover, even if I didn't like it. Now, I know that time is too precious to waste on something that I really don't like. But, there is nothing like being transported from this world, directly into another. A world that is quiet and where I can be alone, even if it's just for 5 minutes.

So many books, so little time is my motto....


Monday, April 07, 2008

Making connections

I could have titled this one, Psychic Pain, but went with Connections instead. This is going to be a very painful post for me to write, but I really feel that if I don't get these words out of me, they will eat me from the inside out.

Life has been very rough for me for a while. I can't even pinpoint when the downward slide began, but it's been a while. I am very depressed, and spend a lot of my energy covering that up so that people don't know, although I would guess that those who know me well, know this. I feel like that commercial for Cym*alta lately. You know the one that goes, "Depression hurts?" I could go on and on about what I think is making me depressed, but I think there are 3 things that I can put my finger on. 4 very significat trauma's that have occurred that are all colliding at once and causing me deep psychic pain.

1)My father's death. Some people would say, "Hey, it's been 30 years, let it go already", but it's just not that east. I thought my father would save me from the hell hole that I was living in at the time. Living with an abusive stepfather and an overwhelmed mother. My father's death was single handedly one of the most traumatic events in my life. He was killed in an explosion where he worked when I was 10. Even just thinking about when I was told her was dead can still bring tears to my eyes. It's not just his death that plays into my depression, but the loss of my fantasy that he would take me out of the hell hole that I lived in. He was my LAST resort. And in one fell swoop, POOF, it was gone. I think, no, I know, my ability to trust was badly damaged by this. To say that I miss him is a gross understatement. And with my grandfather's recent death, this drags it all back up again. Opening doors that I thought were shut. Letting those feeling back in and that pain back in.

2)I don't know how much I can talk about this one, but it will be something that I will be journaling about. When I was 14, I met a woman that I started babysitting for. I was just beginning to question my sexuality and was pretty sure that I was a lesbian, although I didn't have a name for it. I knew that I was attracted emotionally to woman more than me, especially woman teachers. I think there was probably some sexual attraction too. So, this woman that I met when I was 14, started what I know now to "groom" me. She paid a lot of attention to me and even though she was dating and sleeping with a man, she started to treat me differently than the other kids in her house. She was a foster mother and in addition to her one biological child, she had several foster children, some young, some teens. I always got special attention. I was attracted to her, I guess you could say I had a crush and was infatuated with her. She knew this and used this. I started to babysit for her and if she would be out late, I would spend the night. Sometimes, I would sleep on the pull out couch if she was bringing her boyfriend home, but if not, I shared her bed. At 15, she finally started to abuse me. At the time, I saw it as love and she really played that up. There is a lot more to this, such as bringing me into her relationship with this man she was involved with and "dumping me" off and on that left me with such grief, that to this day I don't know that I will ever be able to be heathy in a relationship. I feel tainted and dirty. And you can tell me that I was used and abused and that none of it was my fault and intellectually I know this, emotionally, it has left deep scars that I don't know will ever be able to heal from. It impacts who I am as a person, woman and lover to the core. There are too many "unsaids" that I don't want to make public, but this is just an overview. I was robbed of my adolesence. It dawned on me today, my oldest is 15, the same age as I was when the abuse started. It makes a lot of sense to me now, this psychic pain that I have been going through. I see so much of myself in her (my 15 year old) and I feel so strongly the need to protect her from all of the evils in the world. I know that it's true, that when your child is the age you were when you were abused, it tends to bring up all the feelings and hurts that occured when you were that age. I just never really thought about it until now. I have a lot of work to do. A lot of healing. I have been spending a lot of time trying to get out of my own skin. I can't even expain how it feels to be me right now. I feel as though I am that skinny, moody 15 year old all over again, and it hurts really badly. Sometimes it hurts to badly that I just want to leave and get away from everyone and everything. I feel as though I can't be the partner I should be and certainly not the mother my kids deserve. My brain feels so full of pain that I feel as though I am robbing everyone of myself. Including me. I walk around feeling so angry, I know it radiates off me. No wonder our house is a mess of human emotions just flying around. I certainly haven't been a good role model to either one of my children in teaching them how to manage their own emotions. Just look at their mother. This is all I can really say about this issue although the roots are deeply painful and this is just a skim off the top of what happened. This "relationship" went on for 10 years. It wasn't until my 15 year old was born that I realized that I was not going to raise her in this kind of environment. (My ex and I were exclusive for the last 6 years of our "relationship) How sad is that? I couldn't even leave a damaging relationship for myself, but I thank my lucky stars that I could for my child. To give her the chance to be raised by a parent that could model good parenting.

3)Being discrimated against. There is an issue that is going on in my church where I am being discriminated against because of my sexuality. It is draining on my soul. My church is my second home, one of the places that I feel safe and now that safety is being challenged. I have faith in God that this will work out and that the church will do what is right for them. I have been trying to pray a lot. Pray that God will give me the guidance I so deeply need right now. To do the right thing and know what the right thing is. To give me the patience I need to be a good mother and good partner and to give me the grace to be a better person overall.

4) Being disabled - This is probably the biggest current one right now. Still waiting to hear about SSD and still struggling financially. I said to Cheryl the other night that if people don't believe me, I would love for them to live in my body, just one day. To feel the pain that I feel, just for one day. To feel the humilation that I feel because I can't do the things that other people my age can do. I hate walking with a cane, but if I don't, then I run the chance of falling. I want to work. I miss it badly. Thinking about working makes me feel tired. But I feel as though I am letting my family down by not working. We have to go without so much. I know that I have written about this a million times, so I am not going to go through it again. Let's suffice it to say that it's something that I pray about every day. Asking God to please give me a body that doesn't betray me. Because this one does. For those of you who read me and deal with chronic pain, you know exactly what I mean.

If you've read this far, thank you. I feel drained now, but in a good way. I will be writing more privately about my abuse, but I hope telling as much of my story that I did will help anyone reading this that is either going through it or have been through it. Words are very powerful and used in the right way, helpful.

I really want to be happy again. I want to be pain free, both physically and psychically. I want to smile again and be a good role model to my children. I don't want them to see me fighting with my partner. I want them to see a healthy and wholesome relationship. I want to act with grace and dignity. I want to be the partner who gives something instead of always taking. I want to be the mother who can be there for her kids in all ways. I really, really just want to be a healthy and happy ME!