Saturday, October 31, 2009

The Great Wall of Zentil


PROGRESS: October 2009

MORE PROGRESS: October 24th

NZ posted pics of the progress on his facebook page last weekend, and our friend John labeled it the "Great Wall of Zentil" and he isn't too far from the truth! This thing has turned into quite the project, and the blocks we had delivered in August are now all used up. We need more!!!

So, until a new delivery is made, we're in a holding pattern. About 3/4 of the way done...all in a days work!

NZ, our neighbor and a couple of laborers worked on it last weekend from sun-up to almost sundown...non-stop.


I'm super duper excited to see the dirt pile dissapear so that the true magnitude of the yard size can be fully appreciated. Right now that pile o' dirt cuts the yard in half. The other super cool thing that they executive decision by my 'ol man, was to cut in and terrace the edges...which means..I can plant my poppies in there!

The guys are talking about other crawler plants to plant between the stones, but the only thing I am jazzed about are my poppies. Oh how I love California Poppies.

Thursday, October 29, 2009

What I need to do...

Now I have a Kenny Chesney song stuck in my head, but not the whole entire thing, just the first few lines..

It's called, " What I need to do" and he talks about running away from his problems and knowing that he needs to turn his car around and head back to deal with it all.

I've just got the " What I need to do " part playing over and over in my head.

I need ( we need) to let our little girl go.

Not in the sense of forgetting about her, no way, no how..but we need to give her the proper memorial. Just NZ and me and her ashes. We need to do it soon...otherwise, this mama just might hold onto those ashes forever. We've talked at length about where & how, but the "when" part is always "soon"..and never set.

I think "soon" has arrived.

I think about these other moms and dads that have gone through an infant loss, and wonder how they deal with the burial, creamation etc.. I know that religion plays a large role in how many choose to memorialize their babies, but do others who have creamated their babies struggle with letting go of that last little piece to hold onto? Do they keep urns? Do they let them go at sea? Bury them under a tree? I know, pretty morbid topic here, but it's what we're faced with. We have made our decision of what we want to do, but committing to a time and date to go finally do it has proven to be difficult.

We're strong & we're lucky to have one another...We know what we need to do....and it's going to happen, but this dragging of the feet just isn't like us.

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

6 months later..

6 months from the start....I finally finished my nephew's Quiet Book.
Scroll back to some of my April/May posts and you'll see the beginning of my project...Well, those photos were as far as I got. After losing the baby, I went through a funk of not wanting to do anything that I found enjoyable..(ie. Sewing/Baking/Crafting).

Well, the love is back. My sewing machine hasn't left our dining room since mid September, and it's not because I am too lazy to pack it up and store it's actually getting regular use! I'm against using the dining room table as a catch all, it drives me nuts to have magazines, papers, keys, wallets, purses and the like put there as a resting place. Dining room tables are to be eaten at, and that is all. Unless, of course, I need to sew. Then....and exception is made. I'll bend the rules for myself (=

Anyhow, I am once again doing a happy dance tonight. I managed to tackle the hardest part of my Quiet Book assembly. I punched grommets through each page, and threaded them through extra large Key ring clips, and then carefully threaded them through a binding I made out of handmade bias tape. Phew!

I'm sure it will take him 0.6 seconds to destroy it, but I reinforced every seam and sew- on item that I could.

So, in case his mama reads my blog, I'm only giving a sneak peak so that she too can be surprised come Christmas time. For a while there it was looking like it was going to be a 3rd Birthday present more than a Christmas present, but in a clutch performace, I pulled it off.

Now if only the Dodgers could pull off a performance of that magnitude, they'd beat Philly.

A girl can hope!

Monday, October 19, 2009

Tricks of the Treats

My one and only favorite sister, SS came down this weekend from Santa Barbara to have a crafty Saturday with me. We had been planning this since last October. Last year we had the novel idea for me to catch the train up to Santa Barbara for the weekend. We chose Halloween weekend, since her hubby was racing and mine was in Abu Dhabi or somewhere wayyyy cooler than California .
I got off work a bit early, and drove to the closest train depot. Wearing slacks and a business shirt, I waited...and waited...and waited....3 hours for my train to arrive. In that amount of time, I could have been in SB even accounting for Friday northbound traffic. So, the train pulls up, the doors open...and Oh My Goodness, there were people standing in the doorways, wet with sweat/alcohol/vomit? Okay, maybe not vomit, but you get the picture.. The conductor tells the 4 of us waiting at the depot that the train is full. Enter at our own accord. Standing room only.

I make my way up the stairs with suitcase in hand, and it was a plethora of Isla Vista bound (UCSB) Halloween go-ers. Drunker than drunk, loud, obnoxious...way not what I expected my Friday sunset trainride to SB to be. I was thinking, "hmmm, I will kick off my shoes, recline with a mini wine bottle and watch the sunset over Rincon as we go by."
The way my train ride turned out was more like hanging on for dear life as people bumped into me, ran over me, and basically didn't know I existed. Had it been 5 years earlier, and I was at my partying prime, a train ride to IV would have been a brilliant Halloween kickoff. But at age 30, not so fun.

Anyhow, this year, my sister came down here. We avoided any chance at either one of us having to endure a train wreck of a train ride.
My sis taught me some new cake decorating tips, and some new techniques with color flow, an icing that hardens and is more versatile than royal icing. We made cupcakes, cakeballs, and candycorn color flow pieces to later be added to cupcakes to send to work with my lucky ol man to share with his co-workers.
I love crafty weekends, and I love my sister.

Keep those Singers rockin'

Keep those Singer (Kenmore..or whatever you've got) sewing machines....rocking!

I arrived home to a box of pink and blue polka dotted blankets from S. today. I did a little happy dance, complete with the cabbage patch moves...Really! I mean, I remember our little girl every single day..multiple times...and the logical part of me understands that I am probably the only one who thinks about her as often as I do... I know that others think about her from time to time, but I wouldn't expect them to have the daily wonderisms that I do.
This weekend was 5 months since we said hello, and goodbye.

And 5 months of putting one foot in front of the other.
Take one step, then take another..Keep on movin..Movin' in the right direction. ( courtesy of George Strait)
Organizing this blanket donation has helped me feel like I am doing something to help others in memory of my daughter. It's given me something to do, and lets me think about her every day without feeling guilty...I can smile when I think of her, and hope that her mama's making her proud.
Thank you to everyone who has taken the time out to help. Blankets, phone calls, texts, e-mails...I'm always touched by those who are sharing in this walk along side me.

Sunday, October 18, 2009

Fit for a Queen

Some of you internetters out there may recall my all important and agonizing decision over the bedding for baby Z ( which, by the way, I still adore and have saved for our next shot at love). For some reason, I am the kind of girl who can pass up the fashion fads and settle for non-designer stuff for the most part, but in terms of linens and housewares, I am a Pottery Barn lover.

We haven't had time to plant the money tree yet, so I improvise when I can, and splurge when there is no substitute. I'll scour the catalog and figure out how to make my favorite pieces myself. There was a time in my life that I would cut out "roomscapes" and catalog them in a binder ( sorry honey! I'm a planner). I think those got tossed during one of NZ and my simplifying days. Neither one of us like clutter, so after a while, pretty much everything goes..unless it's necessity.

Anyways, we recently upgraded our bedroom. A new mattress after hmmm...I'd estimate at least 10 years, if not more. All I know is he had it when I met him, and he had had it a while before, yeah, it was DEFINTELY time to get a new one..a bigger one, thank you very much. That extra 5 inches of real estate makes a difference!

Super excited about finally having a nice bedroom set, yet still working with the as-purchased room ( popcorn ceiling, sconce lighting, maroon/rose swirly carpet and one blue wall)..I have been having a time of times trying to find bedding that "works", and will continue to work once our bedroom is remodeled.
Yesterday while shopping with my sissy, a fabric caught my eye. I came home and couldn't get that print off my mind. It was calling me LOL. And wham! Just like that, this morning, I thought to myself...that's it!!!
I'll make a DUVET COVER!!

So, today I decided to head back to the fabric store and see if they had enough to make a Duvet cover for our new bed. I was in luck..bought it, came home, found a coordinating sheet we already owned for the backside ( reversible is good) and went to town measuring, pinning, ironing and sewing. 45 minutes later, we have a new Duvet as nice as Pottery Barn, at Walmart prices. I love the happy colors and they coordinate everything from our rose/maroon carpet, to my favorite accent color ( granny smith apple green) to our bathroom towels!

Definitely fit for a Queen ..bed, that is. I still have to share it with my King (=

FYI- 4.75 yd is enough to make one side of a Queen Duvet. I cheated and used a Queen size sheet in a coordinating print on the backside.
Total Cost: $28.
Something similar at Pottery Barn: $170 +

Saturday, October 17, 2009

True Blue, We love you!

As I do many times at CVS, I came home with something that was NOT on my list..But, as a Dodger fan, how could I resist? A Dodger PEZ dispenser.
C'mon Dodgers, let's take Philly down!

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Remembering Sweet Baby Z. & friends

Today, October 15th, is Pregnancy and Infant Loss Awareness day. As if those of us who have lost a child need any more awareness, right?

But really, there are so many of us out there who have lost a child, or two, or three...maybe even more. Whether it be a blighted ovum, a full term stillbirth, or a child born alive and dying shortly after...losing a baby is amongst one of the most difficult life experiences anyone will face.

I am amazed at the number of friends who have come out of the shadows to share their stories of miscarriage, and stillbirth. I've joined many blogs of women who share similar stories to mine. Reading their accounts, makes me feel not so crazy. If there is one thing I have learned from my experience, it's that life does go on...Just differently.

So, tonight I sit here thinking about the many people who have lost a child, and keeping hope that one day, we all get what we deserve.

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Song of the Week

Although I have had Kenny Chesney's cd,"Lucky Old Sun", since it was released, I stopped listening to it shortly after the loss of our little girl. If I had to hear "Down The Road" one more time, I was going to have an all out meltdown. I used to listen to that song on my way to work every morning ...dreaming about our little girl, and the years down the road when her dad and I would meet the man she wanted to marry. I loved it. I loved it a lot. And actually, I still do..but I just can't bear to listen to it in fear of crying like a baby.

I also can't listen to George Strait's "I Saw God Today" all because of one stupid line...about looking through the nursery glass at his miracle. That line alone does me in..
Every. Single.Time.

If I were an actress, doing a crying scene, all they'd have to do is make a cd of these songs together and I would instantly get into character. It would be like flipping a light switch.
Movin' along, happy as I could be...and WHAM! One of those songs comes on and the tears flow.

Anyhow, I'm veering from my whole reason for this post...I picked a new kick ass song of the week...On the subject of Kenny Chesney's "Lucky Old Sun" cd, I heard a song today that makes me want to try my luck and put that cd back in my car..I can always fast forward past THE song, right? I heard the Kenny Chesney/ Dave Matthews song, "I'm Alive" a couple days ago and although I have heard it millions of times before, it was like I was listening to it for the first time. The words fit my current mentality perfectly.

Each day I wake up, tell myself to be strong, and remind myself I DO have a lot to be thankful for. But somedays, my grief gets the best of me. Anger, sadness, self-pity, all comes to an ugly head and I burst..It's a daily routine for me now...reminding myself that there's no need to get so worked up over the cards we've been dealt..I can think about them, but I don't need to let them knock me down.."They" say it gets easier, but until then, I'm taking it dayby day, step by step.

Simply stated..
I'm Alive, and Well.

Here are the lyrics to my New favorite song... click link above for video

So damn easy to say that life’s so hard
Everybody’s got their share of battle scars
As for me I’d like to thank my lucky stars that
I’m alive, and well

It’d be easy to add up all the pain
And all the dreams you sat and watched go up in flames
Dwell on the wreckage as it smolders in the rain
But not me, I’m alive

And today you know that’s good enough for me
Breathin' in and out's a blessin' can’t you see
Today's the first day of the rest of my life
And I’m alive, and well
I’m alive, and well

Stars are dancin’ on the water here tonight
It’s good for the soul, when there’s not a soul in sight
But this boat has caught its wind and brought me back to life
Now I’m alive, and well

And today you know that’s good enough for me
Breathin' in and out's a blessing can’t you see
Today is the first day of the rest of my life
Now I’m alive, and well
Yeah I’m alive, and well