Tag Archives: Heaven

7 Quick Takes Friday

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1. Wow.  What a summer…

  • Icky weather.
  • Dad very sick.
  • No beach.
  • Pasty white skin.
  • No trips.
  • Pool only one time.
  • No barbequing
  • Pasty white skin – did I mention that?

BUT, what a fantastic summer it was anyhow!!!!  I immersed myself in learning more about my craft.  This summer was all about making myself a better artist.  Online classes are so incredible!  I absolutely love them.  I learned so much and I think I really improved and learned a TON!! I took several classes from my “idol” artists this summer.  “Paint Your Story” by Mindy Lacefield,“How to Paint Whimsical Animals” by Juliette Crane, & “HerStory” by Danielle Daniel and I’m also enrolled in a year-long course called “Serendipity” by Juliette Crane.  I also took an in-person class by the famous Donna Downey called “How to Paint Like an Artist.”  She came to a local scrap booking store called Altered Angel.   It was a blast!  My dream is to go to Donna’s studio and take a weekend long retreat/class.  Mindy Lacefield will be coming there to teach in 2014.  What a dream come true that would be!  I need to win the Lotto!

Here are some pics of what I created in those classes:

PhotoSheet 5x4 (Owl Fini,Serendip,C,9)

2.  Dad is doing so good!  He was diagnosed (finally) with a condition called “Polymyalgia Rheumatica” after 7 months of hell.  He’s taking Prednisone and it is controlling those terrible fevers and chills.  We are ever so grateful for all the prayers said on his behalf.  It just takes one determined doctor who decided to take ownership and not give up.  We are forever indebted to Dr. Stephen Szabo.  He’s our “Dr. House.”

3.  Join me and thousands of others in praying our latest Novena.  It will be to Saint Jude.  Saint Jude is the patron of Hopeless Causes and Desperate Situations.  Sign up here to get the daily prayers delivered to your email in box.  My father’s diagnosis came while praying the novena to St. Therese the Little Flower.  And we just finished the novena to the Immaculate Heart of Mary.  What exactly is a Novena?  Click here to find out!

4.  There are only 67 days until Christmas.

5.  I’m thoroughly disgusted with our government.  All parties – don’t care who they are.  They are an embarrassment and a disgrace.  I will stop there.

6.  I am so excited!  I had someone reach out to me and ask me to give her and her granddaughter an art lesson.  I about cried.  This is part of my dream and it’s going to come true!  Very humbled and honored!

7.  Even after 2 years, I still miss my mom so much it hurts!  I think of her every day.  I talk to her.  I still cry for her.  And there are days that I still just can’t believe it.  I’ll see a picture of her and my heart will just plummet.  I have so many things I want to share with her.  I need so bad to hear her voice.

“Stars”

I lit a fire with the love you left behind
And it burned wild and crept up the mountain side
I followed your ashes into outer space
I can’t look out the window, I can’t look at this place.I can’t look at the stars
They make me wonder where you are
Stars, up on heaven’s boulevard
And if I know you at all, I know you’ve gone too far
So I, I can’t look at the stars.All those times we looked up at the sky
Looking out so far, it felt like we could fly
And now I’m all alone in the dark of night
And the moon is shining, but I can’t see the light.

And I can’t look at the stars
They make me wonder where you are
Stars, up on heaven’s boulevard
And if I know you at all, I know you’ve gone too far
So I, I can’t look at the stars.

Stars

Stars, they make me wonder where you are
Stars, up on heaven’s boulevard
And if I know you at all, I know you’ve gone too far
So I can’t look at the stars.

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Surrounded by Cardinals

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I love birds. I especially love cardinals. When I see a cardinal I know its my mom visiting me in spirit. I don’t know why but I just know its her. An instant calm comes over me and I feel her there with me. For almost 2 yrs now I have seen a cardinal almost every single day.

So…some of you know my father has been sick on and off since his back surgery April 11, 2013. Every month without fail my father has come down with the most intense shivers, chills, fever (101+) and sweats. Weakness, low blood pressure, faint, rash on face and dry skin, sick to his stomach, and some throwing up out of both ends. He has been in the hospital a total of 3 times not including the surgery hospital stay. So, 4 x in 4 months. Its been very tough on him. Every single time he’s admitted, they do extensive blood tests, MRI’s, Aspirations, never finding any infection or any cause of this fever. VERY FRUSTRATING. Imagine actually begging God for something to show up wrong so he could be “cured.” No one ever wants to pray for a disease or infection but it got to that point. We needed an answer for these crazy symptoms that came on once a month towards the 17th of each month. He will go through about 4-5 days of these symptoms (intense) and then low grade fever and then he’s better again but weak. It takes him a while to get back up to speed. Before this time he was doing so well. Out and about, grocery shopping and running errands. I was so happy for him.

BUT, It happened again this past weekend. We decided to take him to another hospital. In the ER an older, southern “good ole’ boy” took care of him. We all thought he was a doctor. He wasn’t – he was a Physician’s Assistant but he was as smart as they come. He had a great dry sense of humor, immediately put my dad at ease and he was really funny. We started chatting about what has been going on with dad these past months and offhandedly one of us said he’d gone Thursday to get his “EPO” (Procrit to help him make red blood cells as he’s anemic) shot and had chills that night and then full out sick Friday night etc. etc. You could just see the light bulb go off in this guy’s head. He said “this is presenting to me like serum sickness.” Never heard of “Serum Sickness” before and I’m not braggin’ – I know a lot of medical stuff. (through years of research with my mom.) He explained that he thought the Procrit shot was making him sick.

I have been fully convinced that the titanium that had been put in his back was the culprit. I thought my dad’s body was rejecting it. No one would listen to me though – they all though I was wacko. I didn’t care. The next step was going to be a special blood test and I was going to have it sent to the Melissa Organization for metal allergy testing.

Even though this is very uncommon, the doctors have agreed. The Procrit has to be the culprit….so what does all this have to do with Cardinals?

Dad was released from the hospital Wednesday night. I prayed all day Thursday for a sign that this was the answer. I prayed to see cardinals. I took my dog out several times Thursday and did not see one stinkin’ cardinal. I was devastated. BUT, throughout the day I did see my artwork “Pursue” right in front of me. I told God that just wasn’t enough.

Cardinal 1

Then in my hypersensitivity to cardinal spotting he showed me this one.

Cardinal 2

And this one…Cardinal 3 And this Cardinal 4one.

Cardinal 5Then I saw these two…

And then these.

Cardinal 6 Cardinal 7

And once again, I’m like…”Lord. These are all right in front of me. But if this is all you got, I’m going to trust you.”

Then around 7pm I got a phone call. “Michelle, what are you doing Saturday? Do you want to go to the Braves and Cardinals game? You need a break.” I said ABSOLUTELY and then a few minutes later…it hit me and it hit me hard. CARDINAL. CARDINAL!!!!! AHHHHHH holy crap! I was stunned.

I knew I had my signs. But our Lord just gives and gives and gives…He knows you have to “SHOW ME” many times. So today, after the doctor and visiting my mom at the cemetery, I took Jackson out. Wasn’t really looking for cardinals because I was bought in that I had my signs. Low and behold, 3 REAL ones were on the fence just staring at me. Not moving, making sure I saw them. Tears. Can you stand it???!!! True story. THE END.

Until next time…GO BRAVES (but I love my Cards too) Big weekend here in the ATL!!

Michelle

1 year

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“When she shall die,
Take her and cut her out in little stars,
And she will make the face of heaven so fine
That all the world will be in love with night
And pay no worship to the garish sun.”  Shakespeare

“Perhaps they are not stars in the sky, but rather openings where our loved ones shine down and let us know they are happy.”  Eskimo Proverb

i carry your heart with me (i carry it in
my heart) i am never without it (anywhere
i go you go, my dear;and whatever is done
by only me is your doing, my darling)  – – e.e.cummings

“There is a sacredness in tears.  They are not the mark of weakness, but of power.  They speak more eloquently than ten thousand tongues.  They are messengers of overwhelming grief…and of unspeakable love.” ~Washington Irving

“There are no goodbyes for us.  Wherever you are, you will always be in our hearts.” ~Mahatma Ghandi

I love and miss you mommy!!

Signs

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I am not afraid to say that I really believe God speaks to us through signs and through other people.  The key is you have to be spiritually aware, always listening and have a keen ear and the faith to understand it’s from HIM.

There have been many signs that have told me my mom is OK.  Tons of gardenias – more than I’ve ever seen blooming when they should be pretty much done, her roses still in bloom, certain smells that I’m smelling when I shouldn’t be, sounds I hear when I shouldn’t be.  One of three Christmas Cacti having only ONE bloom on it.  One amazing bloom when they have hardly EVER bloomed.  My mom loved to see the deer in our neighborhood.  She was amazed by their beauty and she’d always get up from her chair and scurry to see them when I told her they were out.  This year I have NEVER seen so many deer in our yard and in the grave yard across from us.  The other morning before Mass there were 6 of them in the cemetary at 8 am.  This was on Thursday morning before we left for Mass – The Immaculate Conception and mass for my mom.  Then last night one with antlers was just staring at me – he was in the street just as calm as could be looking at me.  You get the picture.

On October 31 – All Hallow’s Eve, I was at the cemetary.  I was sitting there for a while – really struggling, talking to mom and just spending time with her.  October 30 was my birthday and it was a horribly tough day.  Mom’s stone had not been put in yet and there were summer flowers in the vase they gave us temporarily.  I hated the fact that the stone wasn’t there – there had been a delay and I was wondering when it would be in.  I decided to go to Hobby Lobby and create a Fall bouquet for her.  I was gone for about 45 minutes.  When I pulled into the cemetary there was a small tractor pulling away from the area where mom is.  I pulled up, got out of my car and her stone had been installed when I was away.  I was beside myself.  I cried and cried and cried.  What are the odds I’d go there, decide to leave for a while and when I returned the stone would be in?  A gift from my mom.

We had a bird for many, many years.  His name was Charlie.  Charlie talked and loved to ring his bell.  The Friday after the mass for the Immaculate Conception, I had Jackson outside at around 7 am.  I brought him back in the house and hung my coat up.  I heard Charlie’s bell as plain as day.  However, what you do not know is that we gave Charlie away a week prior.  His cage, his stuff and his bell were outside awaiting the garbage man.  There was no bell in this house to be rung.  There was no Charlie in this house to ring his bell.  My mom’s favorite movie was “Its a Wonderful Life.”  It is just like her to ring that bell for me as a sign.  She knew I’d “get it.”  Needless to say I was pretty amazed and very weepy.  An angel got her wings.  I believe that with every fiber of my being.

Then Saturday morning I was on Facebook.  I never use the chat feature.  I always keep it off but for some reason it always gets turned back on.  My Uncle Les’s daughter Alicia chatted “Call me when you get a chance, I have something to tell you about your mom.”  I called.  She began to tell me that her son (3 yrs. old) A.J. was having lunch with my Uncle Friday afternoon.  He looked at his grandpa and said “Poppa, your sister is in Heaven!”  Keep in mind, A.J. is only just 3.  He doesn’t know the relationship between my uncle and my mom.  He just out of the blue tells my uncle this.  He had my uncle crying.  Alicia decided to question A.J. about this.  So Saturday morning she asked him, “A.J. how do you know Aunt Kathy is in heaven?”  He replied, “I saw her Momma.  She just made it.”  Out of the mouths of babes.  A.J. knows nothing about our belief in Purgatory.  “She just made it?”  OMG!  And it is just like my mom to come to visit A.J.  She loved that little boy so much.  She never met him but she loved him dearly.  I think she loved him most because of the joy he gave her brother.  Who else to let know that she was in heaven?  A child that is too young to really “get it.”  A child who would not be doubted.  A child who was spiritually open and has that faith that we all should have.  Be like little children.  Jesus loves the little children!  What a blessing!  Merry Christmas everyone!