Thanks For Stopping By!

Sidewing Creations Bonanza Booth

Thursday, May 29, 2008

Its That Time of Year Again...

Its that time of year again! Yep! The open road is calling! Hubby and I are thinking VACATION!! But just where to go?? The economy being what it is, we're not sure just how far we want to go and we've already done the Colorado tour.

Not to worry! We'll come up with something! Let's see, we've been to Montana, South Dakota and Las Vegas. We've also toured Colorado as mentioned above. Did I mention we're talking about doing this on our motorcycle? Well, we are, but now we have a sidecar of course. I get too tire and sore from my Lupus to ride on the back all day, but I used to do that "back in the day". Now I do it as much as I can! Not that I'm complaining mind you. The sidecar keeps me riding and keeps the Lupus from taking over my life.

Maybe we could head for Idaho? We've never been there before and it might be fun. Depending on when we go, we could go to Arizona to the areas we've never been. Or we could go back to Las Vegas and then drive through some of the areas there that we've never been. Hhmmm. Anyone have any suggestions???




Here's a picture from our trip touring Colorado. That's Hubby on the right and our faithful companion Taz sitting on the trunk bag. He was a gift from our kids and came dressed in leathers, has club "colors" on the jacket and an earring. The sidecar opens by lifting the front up which is why it looks kind of funny.

This trip, like most, we were doing some geocaching. Its sort of like treasure hunting with a GPS unit. Lots of people are doing it all over the world. You can do it alone, as a family or as teams. Sometimes the treasures you find are more junk than treasure and sometimes you find something really nice, but always you have fun just searching for the treasure!! You can learn more about geocaching at http://www.geocaching.com/ or click on the "button" in the right column.

Anyway, geocaching takes to places we would never go when we travel. First, the motorcycle often takes us off the main roads and then geocaching also often takes you off the beaten path. Hubby and I have learned more about history of areas, found more fun places and met more people this way than we ever would have traveling the touristy way!

Just talking about this makes me want to pack up my backpack and hit the road! Only one problem. Hubby took the motorcycle to work today!!!

Happy Travels Everyone!
Wendy

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

So, the long weekend is over and I didn't get to relax very much, but I did get to have some fun! Of course, not all of you will think that what I did on Saturday was fun, but hubby and I had a great time!

We are the inheritors, so to speak, of my hubby's family recipe for bratwurst. Saturday was the second year we have spent with his parents learning the fine art of making it from start to finish. That means from grinding the meat, seasoning it, cleaning the casings, filling them, freezing some and, of course, cooking them properly. That last step we already knew. My hubby's family makes Thuringer style bratwurst since that's where they are from and hubby is first generation born in the USA. We had so much fun doing this with his parents! We're also honored that they entrusted us with this tradition. We made 112 brats on Saturday which will take us through his father's birthday party and maybe leave enough for each of hubby's 2 siblings, his parents, and ourselves to have 1 or 2 meals. We have now served our apprenticeship and the bratwurst making is now officially our project in the future. I can't wait until next year!!


Sunday, hubby's nephew had an impromptu open house. He and his wife just moved into a new home and they decided not to wait until they were all settled and everything was "perfect". It turned out to be a great time and less stress for them. A lot of the family had not made plans because of our sausage making on Saturday and birthday party plans next weekend for hubby's father, so most were around town.


Monday, I did have to stop to rest some. My Lupus was starting to catch up with me. I was feeling achy and stiff. I was very fatigued and just didn't want to do much of anything. It didn't help that the weather was damp and rainy which doesn't happen often here in Colorado. I spent some time on the computer doing some checking in on my Etsy shop and some research for my hubby. He spent the time doing a major repair on our sprinkler system.


Yesterday I was a good Mom and took my recuperating daughter out to the bookstore. The store is very near her apartment. She was going stir crazy! She was able to look for a book she wants, sit in one of the cushy chairs when she needed to and generally have different scenery. She probably won't be driving for at least another 2 weeks, so I maybe doing this for awhile. I really don't mind. We usually have a good time, but she's at the whiny stage of her recuperation. She still hurts, but not enough to keep her down. She can't drive. She doesn't have all her strength back, so she can't go do everything she wants to do and she is still in the arm restraint. Ah, well, as my own mother reminds me, "This too, shall pass!"


Have a great day whatever you choose to do!

Wendy
This is my Shades of Sapphire Necklace available in my Estsy shop

Thursday, May 22, 2008

Just dropping in...

I just have a few moments to update. My daughter suffered a reaction to the combination of her pain medication and the anesthesia. She ended up getting dehydrated and went to the emergency room at 6:30 AM on Saturday. After spending several hours getting fluids and new pain medication, she went back home. It did set her recovery back several days though. Today is the first day that she hasn't needed a "babysitter" when her husband has had to go to work or run errands.

Its been nice to be home today to catch up on everything that I've left undone for the last week!! I'm looking forward to the long weekend as a time to relax a bit.

Please, remember our veterans and those who have lost their lives, no matter the war, no matter if you supported the war they participated in, even though the actual date of Memorial Day isn't until May 31st, this is the weekend we'll be taking time off for it.

Wendy

Friday, May 16, 2008

How things change when...

Yesterday my daughter had surgery on her shoulder. It was outpatient surgery, but hubby and I were both there with her along with our son-in-law. This was a new experience for us. We were not the "responsible party" for her. We were not consulted. We were not called when it was time to see her just before she was whisked away to surgery. We had to wait for permission. The doctor didn't invite us to the debriefing afterwards. We had to be invited. Its not that our son-in-law didn't invite us. We have a wonderful relationship with him and he just looked at us as if to say, "aren't you coming?"

How things change when a child gets married. Parents are no longer at the top of the priority list. They move to second place. And well they should! Its just that this was the first time it was really obvious for us. It felt weird and good. We realized that our lovely young daughter was truely grown, had chosen a good man, but still needed us just a little bit since she asked us to be there. It was weird to step back and watch them interact, not as this young couple playing at marriage through the wedding process, but actually working through something of importance and knowing how to handle it. They've been married just a year.

Hubby and I looked at each other at the end of the day and knew we had learned a lot. We knew our daughter would recover from her surgery and do well. We learned that she was a strong woman. We learned that our son-in-law is as fine a man as we originally thought. We learned that their marriage has a strong chance of surviving the many problems life will throw at them. We learned that we, as parents, did a pretty good job raising her afterall the diaper rashes, childhood bumps, bruises, and illnesses, afterall the scary teenage years of rebellion, temptations and boyfriends, afterall the young adulthood of slowly letting go into the real world, afterall.

Yes, I'd say things change when children get married, afterall...

That's just my view,
Wendy

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

Its another day!

No matter how hard we try, tomorrow always comes! Sometimes I just want to slow down the days. Sounds crazy to some of you, I'm sure. My grandmother and my mother were right. The older you get the faster time flies. I have so much to do and so little time to do it in. How can that be? I don't even have a regular job? Well, I suppose part of that is due to my Lupus, but I hear my healthy friends complaining of the same problem - NO TIME!

I don't want to waste this life and no, I don't expect to leave some big legacy either. I just want to have some fun along the way. I want to know that I did my work well, raised my kids to be good people, loved God with all my heart and fun while doing it. I don't expect to be remembered a 100 years from now unless someone is still doing the family genealogy. Then I might be a name on a long line of family names.

Its hard to feel that I'm doing any of these things when I feel that I have to rush here and there and everywhere. I don't work because I'm disabled. I do make jewelry, but I don't sell enough to consider this a job. I don't do craft fairs and such, I just sell a few things on Etsy and I donate to a few good causes. Otherwise, I still do what I can around the house to keep it clean, but can't do heavy cleaning. I do the laundry. I keep on the correspondence. I keep the checkbook and do the bills. I care for my 83 year old mother who has had 2 mini strokes and has other health issues. I'm the one who holds the lifelines for the family - I don't keep them afloat - I just hold the place, like a bookmark, for the times they need an ear or shoulder and someone often does. Like people who work full time, I feel like I'm always on, even when I'm off due to my health.

How many of you feel this way? Ready to slow down? Me too! Hubby and I are looking into ways to slow down and live a more simple life. I hope you will do the same. The more we do so, the healthier we become. We are also finding that we are doing more for the betterment of the earth and our fellow man/woman.

I hadn't intended to get so philosophical today, but there you go!

See you next time!
Wendy

Monday, May 12, 2008

It was a long weekend and a wonder Mother's Day!

The weekend seemed to take a long time. Saturday was very busy doing all sorts of things, like doing laundry, cleaning up, etc. Hubby and did do one thing on Saturday that was fun. We went out and bought a new car. We don't usually buy brand new cars. We usually buy them used because of the amount of depreciation when you drive them off the lot. But, we were offered a great deal from Subaru and we met all the criteria. We also got an excellent interest rate. So we traded in our Subaru Outback for a new Subaru Outback. Very similar cars, smaller car payment, new color, 30 miles instead of 58,800 miles on the engine and new tires instead of needing to replace tires. Can't beat that!!

Sunday, Mother's Day, turned out just wonderful. We missed church, which I was sorry about, but that was pushing it for me. We went to brunch with hubby's family and my Mother. It was good food and good company, but it was so nice when everyone went their own way afterwards. I really enjoyed coming home, changing into my jeans and relaxing with my hubby and kids. We never did get a walk or hike in, because I just wasn't up to it. My Mother was tired too. She rested, then came over for a little longer visit and then went back to her area (attached apartment-like part of the house). The rest of the time hubby, son, daughter and part of the time son-in-law (he had to work closing shift) watched a movie and ate Coldstone Ice Cream!!

My Lupus must be on the upswing again. I find I'm tired today for no good reason and I'm having problems focusing on the important things I should be doing, like paying bills! Oh well, I did get 2 more items listed in my etsy shop and hope you will stop by to take a look.

If you want more information about Lupus or the related conditions, make sure you check out my list of links to Health Related Issues.

Thanks for dropping in!
Wendy

Friday, May 9, 2008

Is this blog looking any better to you?

I've added a few things to my blog that I hope will add interest to it. I have a set of health related links that include Lupus, Fibromyalgia, and Sojgren's Syndrome. I have Lupus and the other two I have as secondary to my Lupus, though some people have them as their primary condition. I hope the health links will be helpful to people passing through my blog who haven't had much luck getting help with their conditions or will help friends, family and care givers of those with these illnesses.

I also added a set of links to my favorite charities and causes. I didn't include any of the health related links here, I figure that's a given. Poverty/Hunger is my number one concern. There are more good organizations out there than the ones that I have listed, I'm sure, but these are organizations that I have found are trustworthy. They make a difference in different ways too. Some are advocates, some are helping the immediate needs with short term help and some are helping with long term solutions. Most of these organizations use little of their funds on administrative costs. The ELCA (Evangelical Lutheran Church in America) World Hunger Appeal is highly rated among charitable organizations for this.

You will also see the little picture and the "Join Geocaching" "Have Fun". Clicking on it will take you to the Geocaching.com website where you can learn all about one of my favorite pastimes. My hubby and love to do this, its sort of like treasure hunting with a GPS unit, all the time. We do it on vacation and on weekends when we're looking to get out of the house. Check it out! Its fun for singles, couples, and families!

I did finish my small projects and got them packaged up. I now have to get them off to the post office. I also finished printing out some genealogy material and packaged that up. It also needs to be mailed out. I now have more genealogy to input into my computer. The more I think I have completed, the more there is to do!

I'd like to spend some time creating more jewelry for my etsy shop. It seems though that every time I sit down to do so I either get interrupted or my hands don't work due to pain. I have joint pain from my Lupus and now I have the start of osteoarthritis. I think I have to rearrange my jewelry making time to earlier in the day when my hands are usually better. NOW if I could just figure out how to make sure no one calls me during that time!!!!!!

I'm looking forward to Mother's Day this year more than most. We usually don't do anything, but go to brunch and then sit around at some one's house all dressed up being nice, doing nothing and being bored. I know that sounds bad, but I'm almost 51 years old and have two children, 24 (single) and 22 (married) and I have only had two Mother's Days that I felt were really for me. This year we are still going to brunch. BUT afterwards we all get to go our own way. My immediate family will come back to our house and we will take a walk or hike depending on what I am up to at the time. I love spending time outdoors when I can. If I can't do that or I can only handle a short walk, we'll spend time at home playing a game like monopoly or dominoes or watching a movie. My family will figure out a light meal in the evening. I never really want to do anything fancy on Mother's Day. I like to spend it with my family doing some of my favorite things. I would love to include the rest of the family, but most of them don't think that it is special if you aren't dressed up.

Well, that's enough of my meanderings for one day. I'm glad you stopped by.

My Best To All Of You Out There!
Wendy

Wednesday, May 7, 2008

Still struggling to brighten up my blog!

Today is a very rainy day and I am not motivated to do anything! I really had to struggle to sit down at the computer and not go curl up in a corner with a good book. However, here I am! I have spent a little time over at etsy.com looking over my shop, commenting on the community forum threads, browsing some of the shops and meeting a few new people. I really like it over there. I just wish my sales would pick up! I seem to do better with "in person" sales than I do in my shop. I'm not sure, but I think my pictures are part of the problem. I'm working on that. I really don't want to do the craft show route. I think it could be fun, but I also think it would be exhausting. I think my health issues would be a problem there.

I've also been out looking at some of the blogs of my fellow etsian sellers. I really like some of them. They have great looks and content. I have no idea how they do it, but I'm working on that too!! Yesterday, I added my shop banner and a direct link to the shop. I also added the cute little "I love etsy.com" icons to add a little color. I don't know what to add today, but I'm going to look at things to consider.

If anyone reads this and wants to make some practical suggestions, I'd certainly appreciate it. Just remember I'm new to this and might need some "how-to" help if the suggestion is to advanced. I hope this blog will eventually get some notice like the others I was reading today!

Thanks for stopping by!
Wendy

Tuesday, May 6, 2008

Today I have been working on some smaller projects that I want to finish up with before time catches up with me. I made two zipper pulls and 2 pairs of earrings to donate to a fellow etsian's class reunion. They have a small budget for their 10th reunion and she asked for some help. I was afraid if I left this too long, it would be time to send them and I wouldn't have finished the items yet!! I hate it when I feel rushed, don't you?

I was also working on some earrings to put in the shop. I was trying to get inspired with some new design. I wasn't inspired, so I worked on an old design that hasn't been in the shop yet. I suppose that's better than nothing coming out my brain!!

I also put together some genealogy pages, family group sheets, descendant charts and the like, to send off to a cousin. He found some old family documents in an album of family pictures that no one wanted. He took the pictures to rescue them from oblivion and there were the documents with names and dates that had been missing from the family genealogy!! He's going to photograph the documents for me and I just sent him my most recent update of information. If anyone out there is interested in family history, you know how addiction it can be to chase your ancestors!!

I want to head over to etsy for a little while today. I'm on 2 BnR's and I like to spend time in the promotional and marketing threads getting to know my fellow etsians. I'm also going to see if I can figure out how to add anything else to this blog to make it interesting!

Please stop by again!
Wendy

Saturday, May 3, 2008

My First Post!

Since this is my first posting, I'm very excited! I feel I should tell everyone everything about me... BUT I won't! I just want to introduce myself very briefly.

I'm 50 years old and I will be married 30 years to my high school sweetheart in October. We have 2 grown children, 1 is married and 1 is still thinking about it. I enjoy making jewelry and I sell it on Etsy.com. I am one of my family's genealogists/historians and have been doing it for over 20 years. I love to go geocaching (think treasure hunting). I love my family. I read all kinds books, like to travel and meet new people. God has always been part of my life having been baptised as a baby into the Lutheran Faith. When I was 34 I was diagnosed with Lupus aka SLE (we'll talk more about that some other time).

When asked how I named my Etsy.com shop, Sidewing Creations, this is what I tell people:
My hubby and I have always loved to ride motorcycles, but as my Lupus has gotten worse it has become harder for me to take long trips. Eventually we decided to get a sidecar. Now when I am too tired or too sore to sit on the back, I get in the sidecar which is more comfortable and has a cover to protect me from the sun, cold, or what ever weather might be bothering me on a particular day. The motorcycle is a Honda Goldwing, so my hubby calls me his "Sidewing" when I'm in it. My avatar is of me in the sidecar and the shop title was born! I make mostly jewelry, but do make book marks, keychains, backpack hangers, zipper pulls, etc., so I used creations instead of jewelry in the title.

That's a quick introduction of me. I hope you'll visit often!
Wendy