Tuesday, November 27, 2007


Hmmmm. What do I say?
How do I explain where I've been these last two days?
Why I haven't posted a BLESSING yesterday or today?
Why I'm not going to post now that I'm here; that I'm just going to crawl into bed?

I'm simply going to say, "sorry" and "please forgive me".

And, hopefully you love me as much as I think you do and you'll accept my apology.

So, all that's left to say is, "thank you" and "goodnight, I'll be back tomorrow."

Love, Jan

Monday, November 26, 2007


OMG, y'all, I'm so excited! I won a blog give-a-way! I won EDNA the elephant through a blog give-a-way on Glitter and Grunge - a fabulous blog!!WOOHOO!!!
I'm so excited because she is so darling and will look so precious in my guest room that I'm re-doing...
I'll blog about that when it's finished but I will give you a hint about the theme....it's the only room in the house that "looks" like me.
Okay, stop begging, no more hints.
Edna was made by *and donated by* Margo of Bought the Farm.
Little Edna is ready for the circus in her little hat and funky collar. She is approx. 9" tall, handstitched from dyed mohair and is jointed. Isn't she just precious???
Be sure and visit Margo's site - she's an amazing artist!
Glitter and Grunge is a wonderful blog that I keep up with on a regular basis. Once you get to their blog you'll spend lots and lots of time exploring! And be sure to keep up with Missy on those give-a-ways!

Sunday, November 25, 2007


One of the reasons I consider our living room a blessing is because of the time and effort I spent decorating it so that it would represent my feelings of the Texas Hill Country and ranch living.
The paint color, for instance, took many trips to Sherwin-Williams trying in vain to get the right color of brown. Every time I would go in to their store and try to explain what I wanted, I came home with a color that reminded me more and more of the color of flesh.
Jeffrey Dahmer would have loved these colors.
Finally, and to the delight of our contractor *they can get so snippy*, I had a brilliant idea!
I went to the chicken house, grabbed a brown egg, drove to Sherwin-Williams, pulled the salesman out of the broom closet I saw him run into when I drove up, and told him to picture the brown egg held up in front of a herd of goats..............THAT was the color I was looking for!
Now, was that so hard??? Look at those brown walls - perfect.
You're looking at the living room from the entry hall in this first picture.
This second picture has you on the other end of the room looking towards the entry hall.
And I must tell you.....when we remodeled the "big house" as we call it, we had to take it down to the studs. Frank the Tank mumbles to this day that it would have been cheaper to build a new house....
The hardwood floors are original.....
The "coffee table" is an old beat up table from the basement of an 1800's department store in downtown Kerrville, Schreiner's Department Store, that closed this summer. We love it!

This is the southeast corner of the living room - you can see into the entry hall in this picture........When we took it down to the studs we discovered that there was no insulation in the front, south-facing, walls. This is because the cold wind would blow out of the north - most houses in south Texas built in the late 40's and early 50's didn't have insulation in the south walls. I thought that was interesting. This bookcase was original *except for the doors*. If you stand in just the right spot and look at them you can see that they're a wee bit crooked.......you're looking at the northeast corner of the living room.
The fireplace next to the bookcase is original and was built using the same stone as the exterior of the house......and if you look above the fireplace at the picture hanging......it's an original oil in the original chipped and warped frame. On the back of the painting it describes the scene, a snow storm, the year it was painted and the owner's name, a resident of Center Point. I "did" the entire room around this painting.
This leather chair sits at the end of the fireplace at the entrance into the dining room and kitchen area.
This very old armoire from Mexico is on the west wall of the living room and houses our television......though it's big enough to hide a body. The thing is huge and according to my husband and all of his friends that helped move it in to the house, it's really heavy *grin*.
This is the cozy corner of the sitting area. Big fluffy down pillows that envelop you when you sit down....hmmmmm. I picked out the fabrics in an attempt to emulate the feeling of the Hill Country and really like all of the deep red color in the furniture and the window treatments.

I love this room and the feeling of "home" that it invokes. I tried really hard to make it a place where you would want to curl up under an afghan and visit or watch T.V. with someone you love, or if you were a bunch of teenager boys, you really couldn't hurt anything.

I think between the filthy chicken egg, the deep reds, leather, hardwood floors, paintings and window shutters that I was successful because, like I said, I love this room.




Saturday, November 24, 2007


This is Blake.
He is my middle child, my middle blessing.
I have always referred to him as my "caring" child.
He has big muscles, is over six foot tall and yet, is my most tender hearted child.
He is kind, considerate, loves God, continually strives to be the best he can be, is thoughtful of everyone around him, has a passion for Michigan *go blue and gold!*, appreciates everything his daddy and I do for him, loves cats, and has a great laugh! Oh, and he's fun-ny!

The best thing about him is that when he comes home from college for a visit?
He lets me hug him for as long and as often as I want to.
Yeah, I know, too cool.

Today's blessing?...............

BLAKERS - MY MIDDLE CHILD - I'm so blessed to be his mom.



Friday, November 23, 2007


I told you yesterday in my post "P.S." about Skyler, but I didn't have a picture of her to go with my post......soooooooooo, here you go!
Skyler!! My other "little girl" sitting in my bedroom holding our dog, Gracie, who happens to ADORE her!

Skyler is so good with animals and all of our dogs absolutely love to see her coming because they know their tummies are going to get a good rub!

Enough about Skyler.
Let's talk about me.
This is my baby, Ben.
He's my dog.
We have three dogs here at the ranch and the way we are, we could have four tomorrow.
We will take in just about any stray but no matter how many dogs we have, Ben will always be mine.
I love dogs! I love all three of our pups, but Ben is very special to me.
I got him from the Humane Society a year ago. He was bigger than I thought I would ever pick, but I fell in love with him when I first saw him.
He's an older dog, I would guess about 12 years old, has had heart worms twice (before we took him) and had been adopted and brought back twice because he was "over-aggressive".
None of that deterred me - I even thought that the over-aggressiveness might be a really good thing since the two dogs we already owned were both yip-yips.

Ben has made a delightful addition to our family!
He is a wee bit aggressive with strangers and I think that' just fine!
He's my protector!! He follows me everywhere I go when I'm home....I leave one room and walk into another, he gets his fat self up and follows me into the next room without even waiting to see if I'm coming back!
When I'm working in the studio he lays right under foot...though he's in constant motion because he has yet to figure out that my chair is on rollers and I am all over the place when I work!

I adore Ben and am so happy that we were able to give an otherwise *maybe* unadoptable dog a home. He's not just my protector, he's my buddy and HE IS A TOTAL BLESSING!

Thursday, November 22, 2007


I sincerely hope you spent the day with people that you love while remembering those that have no one; that you had a feast for supper yet remembered those who didn't have enough to eat yet again today; and that you realize how much God loves you even when you are unable to love yourself....

I had a fabulous day spent with my family and my best friend, Annette, and her family.
We were so blessed to all be together today! I just want to show you a couple of pictures that really represent our day.....and of course, they're all about FOOD.
We're such pigs!

Here's Frank the Tank taking care of his dessert.....
Annette made him his favorite pie for Thanksgiving - lemon meringue, and he was in his own little world as he enjoyed it!
But, as good as Annette's pie was, I'm sorry, NOTHING is better than my cornbread dressing!
It was so good that I made the suggestion that someone should invent a sucker that tastes like my dressing so that we could enjoy the flavor longer than our tummy is big!
(The idea was not well received - they're all just jealous)

When I asked Annette's son, Josh, what kind of pie he wanted he said, "all of them", so that's what he got! We took a picture first to show how yummy "all of them" looked - we call it "The Sampler"......what a good idea!
My day has been blessed with food, family, friends..............my boys are all home, Frank the Tank, his brother, John, I got to spend this special day with my best friend and her family........


Happy Thanksgiving, friends. Jan

Wednesday, November 21, 2007


Whew! I'm pooped!....It's a happy poop (that sounds wrong), but I am still pooped! I stood in the kitchen all afternoon getting the cooking and baking done for tomorrow's Day of Thanks meal - I made FROM SCRATCH (I'm so proud that I still cook from scratch) this cherry pie that Brittany is holding (more about her in a minute) - made the crust, the filling, all of it, from scratch, and it is such an amazing pie, I tell ya.
I made the dressing for tomorrow - oh, yeah, straight from Oklahoma where they know how to make dressing.....cornbread dressing - mom's recipe. OMG, it is to die for and I just about do because I feel like I'm gunna pop after I eat T.G. dinner and I blame it on my consumption of the dressing! And, I made an apple cake - my grandma's recipe, for the guys to eat on tonight (I'm calling it "supper") Yum, yum, yum, the sights and smells of my kitchen had everyone coming over.....
So, by now you probably think you know what my blessing is for today but I betcha you're wrong..... TODAY I AM BLESSED BY A VISIT FROM MY LITTLE GIRL, BRAT. .....that's what I call her....."my little girl", oh, and "Brat". I've called her Brat since she was little and she's been my little girl for a few years now. I love her like my own (thus "my little girl") and though she's really NOT a Brat, it stuck after the first time I called her that!
She's Blake's age, 20, and has been his best friend forever. And, she's been a part of our family for what seems like forever, but she and I started getting close when she started working for me in the studio about three or four years ago.
We have such a good time together....she's a hoot, we love spending time just hanging out in the studio, going to movies, talking, taking rides in the convertible oh, and when I've been bed ridden, she'd come over and climb into my big ol' bed and we'll watch DVDs together - like "24" reruns (I own them all).
She's a dear and I adore her.
Friends have told me that I should have had a girl along with my three boys and I tell them,
"I do."

Happy Thanksgiving to all of the families that God made and to all of the families that He let US make! Jan

And I need to add a P.S. here -
P.S. I have one other "little girl" that I would be amiss if I didn't tell you about her.
Her name is Skyler and though she didn't come running over today when she smelled the cherry pie baking so she could have her picture taken for this post, she's just as dear to me as my Brat. Same age, same story except I didn't hook up with her until she started working for me in the studio about the same time Brat did - didn't know her before that.
Anyway, I'm thankful for both of my girls - Brat and Skyler - they're amazing kids!

Tuesday, November 20, 2007


This is going to be fast! I have to leave in minutes for my youngest son's basketball game but must get this posted before I go - I know that by the time I get home from the game I'm going to want to go straight to my bedroom.............so, quickly...........today's blessing..............

I'm talking about my "art friends"!
And they're everywhere!
They're on blogs.
They're on Etsy.
They're at retreats.
They're in swaps.
They're in daily, weekly and monthly emails.
And they "get me"!

None of them live locally! My friends that live locally look at my work, nod their head and mumble, "mmmmhmmmm....". LOL
My art friends meet me where I am - creatively, artistically, emotionally.
I feel such a connection with each of you even if it's been weeks since we've "talked".....it doesn't matter......we just jump right back into the middle of the current puddle of paint and go from there.

I want to name you....those of you that mean so much to me.
I want you to see your name on my blog but am so afraid I'll forget someone because I'm old.
So I won't set myself up for embarrassment or anonymous comments and I'll simply say, "you know who you are"....

....you're the one that makes me smile when I see your name on a blog comment or better yet, an email!
....you're the one whom I share a very special connection with because we both love and worship the same God who connects us through our gift of art.
....you're the one that makes an effort to keep up with me through my blog posts and takes the time to leave a comment so I'll know that you were here!
....you're the one that I count as a dear friend and I've never even seen your face!
....you're the one that if I answered a knock at my door and it was you, I would be so excited that I'd probably pee right there!

....you're the one that read this entire post because you love me like I love you!

Blessings!! Jan

Monday, November 19, 2007

BLESSING #19.......

I'M BLESSED WITH SLIPPIN' BACK INTO THE ZONE! WOOO HOOO!! I'M BACK IN THE ZONE! Oh, yeah, baby, I'm feelin' the juices! They're flowin' and I'm busy makin' a mess of my work table!!............
I haven't been in the zone since I got back from Art n Soul last month.
I've been sick(er), taking way more meds than I like to, lethargic, blah, blah, blah.
Still am, I guess.....still sicker than normal, taking more meds than I like, lethargic, blah, blah, blah, BUT I'm gettin' my groove back and that's such a blessing!

I'm posting these pictures to show you! LOL! I'm working on finishing a project from Art n Soul that, of course, should have been finished weeks ago! Oh, it's been so much fun this afternoon, getting each page ready to be assembled....I've picked out papers, figured out how to embellish, just been workin' on my art!

Sunday, November 18, 2007


"King Clay"....oh, how he hated it when I first called him that last weekend....
but it was so appropriate!
He was titled!
He was sashed!
He was crowned!...
2007 Center Point High School Homecoming King!

I was so proud....as only a mother could be....my baby was a king!
And the girl on his arm...precious Sarah....what a perfect evening!
The evening opitomized my feelings about this king, my third child.

Clay is the last of my children and I am blessed by my third child.
The baby.
My precious 17 year old child who earned the nickname of "Smiley" early on when a friend commented that even when Clay was getting in trouble, he kept smiling.

I never did think too long about that comment.
That smile could have been a reflection on the severity of my punishments....

.....Clay was crowned homecoming king a week ago but he has always been a king to me.
He was the child we didn't think we were going to be able to have....it took three years to get pregnant with him and even at his birth he reigned supreme; not wanting to be ripped from the Queen Mother and having to be taken by force!

He has delighted his daddy and me for 17 years with his easy disposition and his riotous sense of humor!
He's laid back - not always a good thing - his bedroom's very scary.
Laid back * lazy * laid back * lazy.....depending on the day, I can go either way!

He adores sports, excels at basketball, loves to play tennis, can text with the best of them, and hates left-overs.
He respects his parents (now that he's past 13, 14 and 16 years old) and loves the Lord.
He's responsible, works with the small children at church on Sunday mornings, is co-captain of F.C.A. (Fellowship of Christian Athletes), is engaged to every 4 year old female in the pre-school class at our church and is friends with everyone.

He's a delight.
He's King Clay.
And he is my third heartbeat.

Saturday, November 17, 2007

DAY 17 of the

I was "talking" to my friend, Sandra of Warehouse ArtChix, this morning and we were talking about how faithful God is, how His mercy and grace get us through every day and how He takes such good care of us. It felt good to talk to another faith-filled artist - we both commented on that. So, that was a good thing.
Then I left my sitting area - that's it above. I thought you might like a visual - the chair on the right is where I usually sit, laptop in lap, feet up on the ottoman...
Anyway, I left my sanctuary and wandered down the hall into the rest of the house.
I passed the main bath in the hall and my cleaning lady came out and told me that the tub was not draining, that the plumber had not fixed the problem, so, of course, she couldn't clean it.
Then I passed the guest room where I have about two dozen framed and sitting pieces of art to be put up so the decorating of that newly re-done bedroom will be finished, a pile of Christmas 'stuff' that is taking over a large corner of that bedroom (I admit that 'stuff' is not how I referred to it about 30 minutes ago), a closet that is overflowing and needs to be cleaned out so that Christmas 'stuff' can be stored in it, and then I walked through the kitchen which reminded me that I'm cooking the entire Thanksgiving dinner for us and another family.

I then headed back to my sitting area in my sanctuary and proceeded to cry.

Oh, that in itself is not so unusual but try and explain that to the cleaning lady who is now completely focused on getting the non-existent dust off of my dresser.

So I'm sitting here, now composed - it was just a momentary lapse of sanity - thinking of all of the things that I have to do, thinking of all of my health problems that have been limiting my participation in the simple day to day things, not to mention anything extra, blah, blah, blah.

And it hits me.
Hits me right in my heart....
God telling me that the longer I sit here and lament on everything in my life in this negative light; the longer I sit here not trusting Him, not leaning on Him, not allowing Him to go before me and make possible all that seems impossible.
I visualize a piece of paper with two columns......
on the left is the "Waaaaaa" list and on the right is the "BLESSINGS" list.
I picture myself filling in the columns and that's when God smacks me upside the head.

Does He smack anyone else?
He smacks me upside the head because He sees that I realize that the BLESSING column of this day dream is the longest by far.
Good grief, it's like "bam, bam, bam"......
  • sitting area in my bedroom
  • window that looks out into the pasture
  • cleaning lady for goodness sakes
  • more than one bathroom
  • a kitchen to cook T.G. dinner in
  • double oven!
  • money to buy the T.G. groceries
  • family and friends to share *some of my* dressing with (the pan I don't hide)
  • a warm home
  • children that love and respect me
  • no addictions *do Snickers count?*
  • a husband that cherishes me
  • a passion that feeds my soul - my art
and then I start to slow down and give thought to what I list..........but look at what I listed without even having to think about it!

We all have them.
But do we all give the glory and thanks to the One responsible?
I guess because this is my blog that I'm allowed to denounce all other gods but the one and only true God if I want to.
And I want to.

I am so thankful that when I start to stray away from remembering my many, many blessings, that God is quick to pull me back into His fold and remind me that He is in charge.
The He will continue to be in charge if I let Him....
and all I have to do is focus on my blessings, give thanks to Him and get my bum in that guest room and start hanging some pictures....

Friday, November 16, 2007


I have an "art friend", Karyn Gartel, who is an amazing artist and she has come up with an amazing idea! She has started a business online and through it is teaching online art classes.
I have been a customer of hers for a long time, own a couple of her original pieces, some prints, collage sheets, and notecard sets. I love her work and I love her online art classes!

The concept is very simple - you pick a class you would like to take from her, you buy it through PayPal, you have a start date, a supply list to gather, and Karyn takes it from there!

The piece you see here is an example of her next class, JUST JUNQUE-IT: Jan 7-Feb 11, '08.
The time requirement for this particular class is 4 -6 hours and the skill level works for ALL Levels.
The six week class is set up like this:
Week 1: Structure of a recessed niche
Week 2: Let's paint!
Week 3: Can we talk Junque?
Week 4: Adhesives: a sticky subject
Week 5: Building a niche of your own
Week 6: Finishing it off
The techniques she will cover include hand painted backgrounds, methods of adhering 3D objects onto canvas, and creating niches in canvas. You will also discuss how to build meaning into your pieces. Each student will complete at least one finished canvas...
Oh, listen to me go on and on about Karyn's class! I should let her tell you about it!!
Simply go to her website, Altered Diva Online Workshops, and let her tell you all about this class and explore her website.....she's amazing and you will be so happy that you took the time to share in today's blessing,
And let me know if I'll be seeing you in class in January!

Thursday, November 15, 2007

.....DAY 15....

OH. MY. GOSH.....



My husband wins the award for "MOST SUPPORTIVE HUSBAND OF AN ARTIST" hands down! Don't even nominate yours - Frank the Tank has it in the bag! LOL

.....I attended Art n Soul in Portland last month - it was my first art retreat.
I adored it.
I want more of it.

Today I am going to be registering for my classes in Virginia and I am so excited!
I'm excited about this retreat for different reasons than Art n Soul, Portland....
God willing, I will be taking two classes involving soldering, one class involving making jewelry from things in my junk drawer (oh, yeah!!) and a painting class that should help me get down to a child's level when painting - that's exciting!

So, today's blessing???

Hands down, I am blessed with the MOST SUPPORTIVE HUSBAND OF AN ARTIST.

Wednesday, November 14, 2007


Oh, brother! I forgot to blog yesterday's Day of Blessing but remembered to blog today's, yesterday......hahaha!!
So today I'll blog yesterday's blessing and I'll be back on track.
Well, for a day....
Maybe that's what today's blessing should be.............I'M BLESSED WITH WHAT LITTLE MEMORY I HAVE LEFT.

Any of you that are my age, 24 + 30, know what I'm talking about!
A memory is a terrible thing to lose! But, I'm not compaining....it's like I say, it could always be worse!
Think about it for a minute.
If my memory was any better than it is, I would remember the things that pass through my life every day that I just as soon forget I ever saw or heard...

Like the "News at Ten" headliner tonight about the lady that saw Jesus in her pancake.

Or last night at Clay's basketball game when I told a lady how much I enjoyed her daughter, Mrs. S., who is a teacher at our high school.
I had just met Mrs. S.'s father and I ASSUMED that the lady with him was his younger wife and Mrs. S's mom, therefore my heartfelt comment.
Okay, cut to the chase.....
the part where having just a little memory is a blessing.....
Mrs. S's father is 91 (HEY, he was spry!) and the "lady with him" wasn't his wife, it was Mrs. S's SISTER.
YES, sister.
And, YES, that cost me three candy bars from the concession stand.
Not to mention that even when my memory of the most embarrassing moment of my life passes, Mrs. S. is sure to be able to recall it in all it's gory detail.

There are more stories of equal mortification to the teller but thank goodness I can't remember them....."BLESSED ARE THOSE WITH LITTLE MEMORY".....


Fall is my favorite time of year! I love the colors, the change in the weather, the apples, and most of all, ordering Harry & David pears! Oh, my gosh, you have not lived until you've had a Harry & David pear.....heck, any of their fruit! It is amazing and though a wee bit pricey, makes a great "gift to self" (kind of like "note to self" but so much better!) and we give them as Christmas gifts every year to those people that are impossible to shop for.

So, I would have to say that Harry & David blesses me!
I am blessed by Harry & David every fall because I believe in "gift to self"!

Oh, and I guess I should fess up.....the pears in this post, though they are in my kitchen, are not Harry & David pears. They are, however, pears from dear friends that brought them to us from Pennsylvania, and they are delicious.....but they're not Harry & David.
The pears I'll be eating in, oh, about a week, now THOSE will be Harry & David! hahaha

Monday, November 12, 2007

A BLESSING???? - Day 12

I went to the dentist's this morning to have my teeth cleaned.
I LOVE going to the dentist's!
I LOOK FORWARD to going to the dentist's!
And all because of one little word.
I get gas at the dentist's.
It's really the only public place I welcome getting gas.
It's expected.
The nurses know that when Mrs. Thomason comes for anything from a teeth cleaning to a crown, she's gunna have gas.

And that's my blessing for today.
I am blessed because I get gas at the dentist's office.

Oh, you can get gas at the dentist's office, too.
When you make your appointment, just tell them that you want gas.
And then when you get there, you'll climb into the chair, they'll put the gas mask over your nose, you'll close your eyes, and you'll dream.
And you won't care that you're at the dentist's office.
And you'll look forward to going back the next time.

Trust me.

You won't be sorry and I just might make it onto your Christmas list...


When I was writing my blog post last night (the Gift of Laughter) I kept thinking about the email 'forwards' that I have received over the years.
There's like two catagories....you know what I'm talking about - well, some of you do.

There are the forwards that are SUPPOSED to be funny that are simply, well, dim.
That's certainly no reflection on the sender....and it's okay because you come to recognize the sender's name, you see the word "forward" and you simply delete and go on your way.

Ahhhhhh, but then there's the forwards that are SUPPOSED to be funny THAT ARE FUNNY!.....You see the sender's name, you see the word "forward", and you know you are fixin to laugh out loud!!! WOOHOO!!

I have a folder for "forwards" I want to keep. The ones that make me laugh out loud, blow diet Coke out of my nose, snort, put my head between my knees so I won't faint from not being able to breathe - it's for the ones that I KNOW I will never tire of - the one's that I will want to pass down to my children's children.

This is one of those 'keepers'. It may very well be my all time favorite.

Watch it, make a 'keepers' folder for it and then forward it....you'll be on your way to getting that reputation we all covet....the sender of fowards that ARE funny!

It's called Mother's Day.

Sunday, November 11, 2007


Oh, how I adore laughing! How I live for that next moment in my life where I can't breathe because I'm laughing so hard!! Those moments where I have tears running down my cheeks. Those times where I am so tickled that I am *almost* embarrassed!

I was born to laugh. I was born to find the "funny" where there is no funny. I was born to find humor in the oddest of places, in the most wrong of places....it's who I am.

My mother thinks my sense of humor is, at times, anything but humorous. On more than one occasion she has said that "people don't always think you're funny....they can't tell when you're teasing".....

Oh, and she's been right more than one time, I'm sure of it! But, you know what? As hard as I might try, as good as I might try to be, I can't help myself! This is who I am - excitable, easily entertained, spirited, "one who teases".....it's all me and for most of my life I have tried to NOT be all of those things....until about five years ago.....

It was then that God told me, showed me actually, that it's okay to be me and that I don't need to "settle down"; I don't need to "calm down"....I just need to be me!

Oh, it was so freeing! I am now free to find the humor where no one else does, tease with a heart, be easily entertained and not be ashamed of being too loud, of laughing too much, of snorting, of getting excited about life and of laughing so hard that my diet Coke streams out of my nose! WOO HOO!!

To me, it all ties in together....the easily excitable, one who teases, has a loud laugh, laughs too much (is there really such a thing???), is always looking for the next "i can't breathe" moment......it all equals ME.
THE GIFT OF LAUGHTER.......that is my blessing for today.
This flea market tent was set up at Round Top, Texas '06, and was *shocking* my favorite one!

Saturday, November 10, 2007


The bunny sitting on my bed is Marilyn. I've had her for several years and have loved her for many.....she's named after my Aunt Marilyn, a collector of bunnies, who died of ovarian cancer about 6 years ago. When I originally bought her, I did so just because I thought she was beautiful!
It wasn't until my Aunt Marilyn died that she was named.
It wasn't until she died that I started loving her and she became a part of my sanctuary.

Today I am thankful for my sanctuary - my bedroom.
There are some days that I walk down the long hallway to the master bedroom that I will start to grin on the inside, or I will hear, "thankyouthankyouthankyou" in my heart as I get closer, or I will think to myself, "Oh, goody, goody, goody, I'm going to shut the door, put on some p.j.'s, ew, ew, ew, get my Somerset Studio, my glass of ice water, see what I've Tivo'd....ahhhhhhhhh."
And, admittedly, there are some times that the hall seems really long...
In a house full of boys *we have three*, my bedroom is the one place I know I can be alone. The one place I know that I won't be disturbed. The one place where I can let my hair down (I know some of you are giggling), be alone if I choose to be, visit with Frank the Tank *DH*, pet my dog, put my feet up, read a magazine, catch up on blogs, watch something "educational" on T.V. (uh, hello, I'm learning how to operate on Grey's Anatomy), have a Pity Party.........
Our bed is a huge California king size that is set high off of the floor (even my feet hang when sitting on the edge!). I picked out the fabrics, had the bedding made to resemble vintage homestead and did the rest of the room around the look of the bed - I knew from the start of the project that I wanted my bedroom to feel like a sanctuary when I walked in - a place where I would instinctively sigh...................
I keep my lotions, my cell, and books of all kinds on my nightstand. Everything from inspirational to suspense - I usually have about four books going at one time for those nights where sleep eludes me.
At the foot of the bed is a sitting area with an armoire where we keep our T.V. and I keep the most current issues of Somerset Studio, Cloth, Paper and Scissors, books & zines of favorite artists...ahhhhh!
I hope you've enjoyed the tour of my sanctuary, my cocoon - a place that blesses me every single day.

Friday, November 9, 2007


I am so excited about today's "blessing" post that I am staying up late to make sure I get it posted today, the day it's due! (I was sorely tempted to post it early tomorrow morning instead of tonight! LOL)
But it's too important to put off and I'm too excited to tell you about what blesses me today!!

Last Sunday I was told about a soldier, a Marine, overseas, that is not receiving anything from home. No letters, no care packages, no attention, no show of love or support.

I know that there must be many soldiers that don't receive support from home but this particular soldier is someone whom's name God has given me. And since I know his name, I'm going to adopt him! My husband and I are taking him under our wing and that's what blesses me today!!
It blesses me that God has put this Marine in my path
to pray for specifically, to write to, send packages to, to bake for (guess I'll have to get some guidelines for that, huh. Can anyone out there help me with that??)

And here's where it gets even better!!!.....
Do you want to help me? Do you have a Sunday School class, club, group of friends, family, YOU....that would like to help bless this Marine AND HIS COMPANY??? Think of what we could do if we all joined together and reached out to this one Marine and the men and women he serves with?? OMG, SUCH BLESSINGS!!

If you're interested in being a part of this blessing, email me at thomranch@hctc.net and I'll hook you up with his address and any information I get on how to best bless him.
Any way that you want to help would be fabulous!
You can help me with care packages, write letters, join the prayer list, do your own thing from your own corner of the world..........oh, heck, email me and we'll talk about it!!!!!!!!!!

WOOHOO!!! God strikes again! More blessings!!

and a surprise guest....

This weekend is my church's annual Buttons and Bows Christmas Bazaar. It was started oh, I think about six years ago; maybe five. Anyway, it's two days only and in those two days, get this, our lady's church bazaar NETS $20,000.00. Can you believe that?
Well, it doesn't just happen......the ladies of the church work from the week after one bazaar until the next one to get everything done to have such success.
And what do they do with the money they raise??
They give it to the church.......the last four or five years it's all gone into the building fund for the new church we built 1 1/2 years ago.
These are amazing women who are dedicated to the furtherance of God's kingdom by doing what they can do, whether it's sew, glue, cut, sell, set up, tear down, bake, sort....there's a job for any and everyone who wants to serve in this way.
And let me tell you something....I'm sure they would all agree that THEY are the ones blessed through this ministry!
I did my part this year by shopping.....it's one of my gifts and I try to be obedient!
Look at this rag purse I bought - it screamed my name and was only $18.00.
I know, EIGHTEEN DOLLARS! What a steal!
Old quilts, handmade teddy bears, jams, jellies, pickles...............
A beautiful harvest box!
A handmade quilted turkey atop a beautiful pumpkin box.

And now for your reading enjoyment.......
Let me introduce you to my special guest.....now I'm not dissing this wonderful older woman below, in fact, what I really wanted to do instead of sneaking a picture of her to show you was to wrestle her to the ground and claim those dangling earbobs from her ears as my own!
Now, I used a zoom to capture her earbobs but am really afraid she might have caught on to the fact that I was taking her picture and not a picture of the only display near her - the Belly Button Fuzz Buster pipecleaners (don't ask). I just acted non-chalant, adjusted the "press" card on my hat and acted like those BBFB's were worthy of front page coverage.
But I had to take her picture! She sparkled from her hair (I swear, I think she has her hair dresser put glitter in her do!), to her specs, to her earrings. And I'm sure that under that scowl is a GREAT BIG sparkle!!! I think she's precious!

Thursday, November 8, 2007


I have spent all day thinking about what I would write about today.
Actually, I haven't just been thinking about what I would write about, I've actually wrestled with it.
I refuse to say that I'm "having a bad day". My belief is, "you name it, you claim it", and it just sticks in my craw to name a bad day.....
however, I'm not so naive as to not be able to recognize a day that's not one of my better!
...and today was one of those; in the line of many, actually.
However, it is not my nature to complain.
I hate to hear people complain because every time I do I am always reminded that "it could always be worse".
None of us has anything to complain about because, I promise, there is someone out there that has it much worse than you or I do *and they're probably within a few feet of you at any moment...*.

So, okay, here's today's blessing:
I am blessed with the knowledge in my head and in my heart that I.....AM.....BLESSED.
I have nothing to complain about..........ever........WOOHOO!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Oh, I may have had two Pity Parties (RULE: they may not last longer than 20 minutes) today, but after 20 minutes I pulled myself out of them and started focusing on my blessings.

It works.
And, thank God it does.

Wednesday, November 7, 2007


from left to right: my brother, RUSS, sister JOAN, MOM, ME, sister JEAN, AND baby brother, RANDY.
WHAT A BLESSING MY MOM, BROTHERS AND SISTERS ARE TO ME! ....Not to mention how blessed I am with my sisters-in-law, nieces, nephews and cousins! Ours is a big, close family and when I come across people who are not blessed to have a large, tight-knit family, I am made even more aware of how blessed I am to be so close to mine.

Oh, but it hasn't always been that way...
My brothers AND MY sisters have been known to tell the most awful lies about how bossy I was as the oldest child. They have spread vicious rumors about how I would "claw" them with my fingernails, how I would *tattle* and boss them around, how I would tell my youngest brother that he was adopted until I made him cry.
Oh, come on!!!
Why, anyone that knows me, knows that it would be impossible for me to be anything but nice.
.....Everyone knows that my favorite saying is, "because nice matters".
Well, where do you think that came from???
Do you think I just pulled it out of the air???
It came, I feel certain, from my deep abiding love for all mankind, especially those less fortunate than me - those dipsticks I was forced to babysit....my psycho siblings.

In fact, just the fact that I would consider my siblings a blessing is a miracle in itself....
because I REMEMBER.....
...coming home late at night (during college break) and having to walk alone through our long kitchen in the pitch black because I couldn't get the light switch to work because one of the brats had balanced the switch at the other end of the kitchen so that the switch at my end wouldn't turn on the lights.
And even though I knew, I KNEW, those r*t*rds were all waiting to jump out and scare me, I would still be so scared that I would scream bloody murder when I heard the first "boo".
It's no wonder I have high blood pressure today.
Oh, and I remember when we lived in Leawood, Kansas, and I was like in the 4th grade and we had this huge patio on the back of the house with probably 100 flood lights. Those spiteful little snakes would wait 'til dark and would lock me out of the house, turn on all 500 of the flood lights so that every JUNE BUG IN KANSAS could find me and ATTACK ME.

Well, that's what I remember.....I'm only touching on a couple of the highlights, but I think you get the picture. I know that from reading this post you can fully appreciate why we are so close today and why I love them so dearly.

Oh, and where was my MOTHER when all of this was going on???....I'll save "Mom as a Blessing" for another post.

Tuesday, November 6, 2007


This is day 6 of the "Month of Blessings" and it must be dedicated to our eldest child, Craig, because it is his birthday!
Above is my favorite picture......Blake and Craig at Christmas time in the guest house at the ranch....proof positive that Craig adored his younger brother....(and that Blake was worthy of that love! Look at those faces!!)
Craig at the ranch this summer (above) and playing rugby for Angelo State University (below).
Craig Merrit Thomason is our oldest child. He was born on November 6th, 22 years ago...

"Happy birthday, my sweet, sweet boy. "

Are you rolling your eyes, Craig, because I referred to you as my "sweet BOY"??
Well, don't.
It's not necessary.
Let me explain why....

You are my first born.
And when you were born you were my sweet, sweet boy.

Then you began to grow up....
You started Kindergarden and you were my sweet, sweet boy.

Then you played YMCA basketball, Little League baseball, and you were your daddy's helper.
You were also my sweet, sweet boy.

When you were in 5th grade I remember being so proud of you because you stood still and tall for something YOU thought was right, something that you liked, no matter that everyone, including your friends, thought your hair parted down the middle looked goofy.
Oh, don't get me wrong, it did look goofy.
But you didn't care what anyone thought............you liked it and you stood firm.
And you were my sweet, sweet boy.

In junior high and high school you suffered through all of the things kids suffer through................
your parents at times were insufferable in your eyes, I'm sure.
There were some rough times, but you know what?
You were ALWAYS my sweet, sweet boy.

College was hard on me.
Letting you go and acting like it wasn't that big of a deal.................
but I think you knew how hard it was on me and that's why you remained
my sweet, sweet boy.

And now you're 22 years old.
An adult.
Oh, please, let me say, "young adult"!
And you are involved in a relationship, a sport, an education, a healthy way of living that I am so proud of - you are turning into the young adult that I have dreamed of and that God knew you would turn into...
and you're my sweet, sweet boy.

So, do you understand now that you will ALWAYS be my sweet, sweet boy???

I absolutely adore you, Craig.
I cherish our relationship - the ups and downs because they have only made our bond stronger in the long run and in the scheme of things, they haven't even been that big of a deal - I cherish our hugs, our time together, dinner with all of us at the dinner table laughing so hard that we can't swallow, watching you and your brothers become best friends, I so enjoy watching you and your daddy spend quality time together....

You are my life.
You are my sweet, sweet boy,

and I love you more,


Monday, November 5, 2007


My blessing today, this 5th day of the "Month of Blessings" is this simple fact......
It is a blessing to me when I am not feeling well, for whatever the reason, if I can muster up the energy to be a blessing to someone else. And yesterday I was able to see to fruition one of those VaLiaNt efforts with these wonderful Halloween tags you see below!
I saw these tags on roseyposeycreations' etsy shop and even though it was less than a week until Halloween, I had to have them!! I thought they were precious and though I didn't have a clue what I would do with them...and even though I knew that if they were something I really needed, I could make my own Halloween tags, they just screamed my name and so...I bought them! LOL
Cheryl is an amazing artist and I love her work - I say this to encourage you to visit her etsy shop and see what I mean first hand!

So, the tags come, Halloween is upon us and I'm feeling badly...*the scene is set*...so what to do with these darling tags???.....I filled white lunch sacks with Snickers, Butterfingers, all of the best of candies!, scallop cut the top edge of the sack, folded it down and stapled Cheryl's tags to the front *with orange staples*. I put a list of people together at church that I felt could use a hug and off I went yesterday morning with my blessings.....and it worked! I was so blessed in the blessing of others as I handed out the darling bags of candy and a hug that I momentarily forgot about my own aches and pains!... As I went from person to person (many of whom weren't really sure who I was....that was the best part!) I knew in my heart that my hug or my touch on their shoulder might be the only time they were physically touched yesterday... I realized *yet again* that sometimes we get so busy with our own lives that we overlook the quiet one sitting alone in the sanctuary or the harried single mom trying to get her three kids out to the car, the widower standing along the wall missing his wife or the sweet, sweet lady that is going through chemotherapy but has managed to pull herself out of bed so that she can be at worship...

Try it! The next time you feel badly *for whatever reason*, try blessing someone else with a smile, a touch, a meal, a Snickers!, a phone call, a compliment or a gesture and see how God turns one blessing into two!

I am totally loving this "Month of Blessings"!!

Sunday, November 4, 2007


Wow! What a Sunday!!.....It started out this morning with church and that was great *I'll tell you why in tomorrow's "blessing" post"*, and then church was followed with an amazing afternoon.
Get this.....okay, I co-sponsor a group of high school athletes at our school called F.C.A. which stands for Fellowship of Christian Athletes. It's an awesome group of kids from our school that are involved in some type of school athletics. We meet every Monday night for fellowship, food, prayer, games, speakers, testimonies, questions for the sponsors that we have to some times "get back to ya on that!"; all learning and growing in our Lord; all swimming against the current of peer pressure and society to be the young man or woman that God is molding them into.

And this year has been amazing! It's like I tell the kids, "GOD IS IN THE BUILDING!" He is doing powerful things through the lives of these young men and women and Kim (my co-sponsor and dear friend) and I leave the meeting every Monday night in awe of how God is shaping the lives of these precious young people.

So, here's the deal!.....TODAY'S BLESSING....

I'm still so excited I'm starting to wonder if I'll be able to sleep
tonight. With all of the turmoil in the world, with all of the turmoil in our own little corner of the world, it blesses me so much to see proof that God is indeed "IN THE BUILDING!"


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