Thursday, December 31, 2009

Can you believe that we're coming to the end of another year and the beginning of a new decade? Where has the time gone?

Christmas was lovely and New Years Eve will be quiet and spent at home. That works just fine for me as I'm getting too old to go out and party like a rock star! We'll watch the hockey game - Canucks vs St. Louis - GO CANUCKS! My daughter and I will have assorted appies, some liquid refreshments and a very quiet and comfortable evening.

Tomorrow friends are coming to share New Years Day dinner with us. I'm making my speciality which is Prime Rib of Beef, garlic mashed potatoes, asparagus and caesar salad. This is one of my all time favourite meals and it usually gets rave reviews. We'll drink some wine and kill a few brain cells and a good time will be had by all.

It has been an interesting year. We've had lots of challenges and learned to deal with things that my husband always dealt with but which now fall to us since his death. At one point I thought I might actually need to keep a plumber on retainer! Luckily we have friends who help us and I'm comfortable enough that I can pay someone when I need work done, so it's all good. However, it sure would be much better if I actually were to learn some routine maintenance skills. This may be something that I need to pursue in the new year!

Well must run . Best wishes to all of you for a very healthy, happy and prosperous New Year!

Sunday, December 27, 2009

I had a lovely Christmas Day and have been lying around ever since. It's been a real treat to be able to just be lazy for a couple of days. I managed to get my studio cleaned up again and have been able to play a little. I actually did some work in my art journal and thought I'd share it with you.

Monday, December 21, 2009

Today was a very productive day! I finished up my christmas shopping a full 4 days before the big day. That means I'm done early. Now just need to do the wrapping and I can relax.

We don't have any big plans for this holiday. We're going to an open house on Christmas Eve but it should be an early night. Then home to open the gifts and have a wee drop of Christmas cheer. Christmas day will be just the two of us. We discussed it and felt that we wanted to relax and spend a quiet day - sleep in, whatever - so that's what we'll do.

We'll have all the traditional stuff, except for a turkey. We couldn't find one that was the right size and saw no need to purchase one of those monster turkeys that will feel a third world country. So instead we'll have a roasting chicken with all the trimmings. It will be quiet but it will be fine - we're together and we're healthy and that's really all that matters.

Still scrambling to get the last of my christmas cards out. The last few that are going out tomorrow for back east will probably not get there before Christmas - hence the greeting I've used is "Happy Holidays". Those cards been sent to local people should make it before Christmas so it's all good.

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

It's been just over a month since my last post. Who knew time would fly so quickly?

Life has been extremely busy. The new job is going well and I'm learning so much. I come home at night and my brain is exhausted! I've also assumed the duties of my payables clerk as she's deploying out of the unit at the end of the week. This is a huge job and sometimes I think I have got to be crazy to take this on! However, I've decided that this is how I want to handle this and I've received the support of the boss so it's all good. I feel that the decision I've made has been somewhat strategic and it's appropriate. I'm trying to make a statement here and to take control. I'm not sure that some among us will get that but it is what it is!

Christmas is just around the corner and I'm not even close to being ready. I have taken care of the relatives back east but have not even started to shop for DD. Luckily she's easy to buy for, I have a few ideas that might surprise her and I should be able to get it all done in an afternoon or an afternoon and an evening. DD is off on sick leave, recuperating from her carpel tunnel surgery, so she will be able to help me with some of the odds and sods.

Thought I'd share a new Christmas design with you. I'm very happy with how these turned out.

Sunday, November 15, 2009

I was going through my old messages and came across one a friend sent me about a year ago. Since I consider myself a force to be reckoned with (not sure if that's a good thing or not!) and a powerful woman, I thought this completely appropriate. I hope you get a chuckle out of it too!

Powerful Women's Motto:

Live your life in such a way that
when your feet hit the floor in the morning,
Satan shudders & says...
"Oh shit....she's awake!!"


I've finally completed my tags for the Christmas Alphabet Tag swap being hosted on CST. I was pleased with the end result and the hostess is happy with what I sent so it's all good! Since I haven't posted any art for awhile, I thought I'd post the tags today but for some reason that's completely beyond me, the "upload" function doesn't seem to be working right now. I'll try back later. Frustrating!

Saturday, October 24, 2009

I'm busily immersed in preparations for the second open house for Little Cricket in Langley BC. While I am prepared in that I've already come up with the designs, I'm still down to the wire with the production. It's always the same thing; I seem to function better under the pressure of having a tight deadline, or at least that's what I keep telling myself.

I like making Christmas cards, I really do. Getting ready for the open house always gets me in the mood for the upcoming Christmas season. I like to try out variations of the designs I've come up with and will finally decide which one I will make up for my family and friends. Once the production is complete for the open house, I can breathe a sigh of relief because then I can focus on creating stock and making my own little treasures.

I'm feeling a little out of sorts right now though. I have so much I want and need to do but just do not seem to have enough hours in the day to do them. I've procrastinated on making art which is really silly considering that I keep purchasing art supplies for these special projects. I now have enough to open a small store and still I keep buying! What's that all about?

I feel like I'm frozen in place and that I'm not able to do the creative work that I want to do. I have so many thoughts and ideas buzzing around in my head - unwritten poetry, planned but not initiated art journal pages, so many things I want to do. My house, on the other hand, seems to be getting fuller and fuller - stuff seems to be growing everywhere and I can't get motivated to do the tasks that need to be done. I keep telling myself that I'll do those things - eventually - but eventually doesn't ever seem to come.

Frustration reigns supreme ! I often feel overwhelmed and out of control. I'm very much a list girl so I think that may be the root of my issues. When I don't make a list and identify what I need to do, nothing get done. Hmmmm....

Monday, October 12, 2009

It's been more than a month since my last post - where does the time go?

The new job is keeping me extremely busy and when I come home at night I'm really, really tired. Many nights I'm in bed right after supper. I guess the old grey mare ain't what she used to be.

The weather has finally changed and it looks like we finally have fall here. It's cold and crisp in the mornings and evenings and still nice during the day. My impatience have finally gotten some frost and are looking a little the worse for wear but I guess that's to be expected considering it's almost the middle of October.

Thanksgiving was very quiet this year. DD is away in Ottawa and I've been working on cards for the store. Cooking for one person is the pits, so no turkey for me. Tonight I had pizza - not fancy but it works. DD is flying back home tomorrow so I'll be picking her up at the airport. She has had a lovely time visiting the relatives, but I'm sure she'll be happy to come back home to her own bed and her cats.

Well must run as I'm in the middle of a christmas card blitz and I can't afford to get side-tracked.


Sunday, September 06, 2009

Well, it looks like the summer is over and fall has arrived on the Coast. Today was an overcast day with a little wind and lots of cloud. It rained a little today, something we haven't had lately. It looked like a typical fall day and I expect that the heat will come on soon. It's nice for sleepy though as it gets cool enough that you actually need a blanket.

I'm preparing for the annual Christmas Open House at Little Cricket. This is a huge event and the numbers keep growing every year. I'm working on several new designs for this event and will be delivering them for approval next weekend. It's hard to believe that Christmas is less than 16 weeks away - where does the time go?

This is a busy time of year for me. I have the Christmas rush to prepare for and then it seems Christmas is hardly over and then the Valentine's rush is here. I must admit though that I do enjoy making Christmas cards. I make cards for re-sale as well as for my own use and this whole process gets me in the mood for Christmas.

Saturday, August 29, 2009

We're having some really wonderful weather here on the coast. Today it was in the high 20's - it's hard to believe that September is right around the corner. I've not done a lot of art over the last several months, despite my plans to accomplish more. I'm not sure if it's the nice weather or if I just needed a little break. I hope to be able to get back to my journal - lots of stuff percolating in the old brain that must get put in a journal.

Sunday, August 23, 2009

Life has been busy, busy, busy lately! I'm not sure where the time goes but it certainly does fly by. I've been working on some new designs for the store and I simply cannot believe that the Open House is only about 8 weeks away!

Work has been a challenge - lots to learn and do. I'm in the process of hiring some new people so hopefully once that's done, things will start to fall into place. It's a long process and one must just be patient until all the paperwork is done.

On Tuesday my daughter and I drove down to Seattle to see John Edward. I didn't get a reading, which was disappointing, but I did enjoy the session. He's quite a remarkable young man! We stayed at the Sheraton Seattle right downtown - very swanky! We would have liked to do a bit of sightseeing but we were only in town for one night so weren't able to get out and walk around. Perhaps next time!

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

I applied for a new job - same office but a step up for me. New challenges, more opportunities to learn and more money. I was told mid-week last and started with the new duties right away. I've been really busy ever since - big surprise there!

I'm afraid my art has fallen by the wayside - at least temporarily. I'm soooo tired when I come home that I don't really have a lot of desire to do art. I have managed to do some stuff for the store but not as much as I would like. Just no time ! I have a couple of ideas for my art journal so hope to do something in it this weekend. Seems to be another thing that has been put on the back burner for the time being.

Here are a couple of new designs - I'm pleased with the way they turned out.

Thursday, June 25, 2009

Work has been crazy busy and it doesn't look like it will change anytime soon. Lots being accomplished but still lots to do. I come home at night and I'm mentally exhausted and just want to go to bed and sleep. Not very exciting and certainly does not allow a lot of time for art.

I did manage to make a few cards - some for the shop and then the large butterfly card for a friend for her birthday. I plan to do another production run of some new stuff on the weekend. Some days I wish I was an octopus and had 8 hands or perhaps I could clone myself!

Monday, June 15, 2009

The weather here on the Coast has been fabulous! It's still warm but not as hot as the 36 degrees last week. With it cooling down at night, it's much nicer to sleep so that's a good thing.

My garden is thriving. I had a last minute idea to plant some veggies but that didn't pan out, basically because I was too darn lazy! Hopefully I'll be better prepared next spring and can do it then. I finally put my hummingbird feeder out and the little buggers are eating me out of house and home. I make my feed really, really sweet and they just gobble that down. I swear it's crack for hummingbirds. I love watching them and half the time you only hear them as they buzz around, darting here and there. Then you'll hear the little chirping sound they make, usually when they feel their territory is being infringed upon by another hummer. Definitely one of God's little miracles.

I have been doing some art but not as much as I'd like. I really want to work in my visual journal on a more regular basis. I never seem to have enough time or perhaps more to the point, I don't use my time efficiently. Lately, I just seem to be tired all the time. Not sure if that is still part of the grieving process or what it is. I just find that after the 2 hours round trip commute and the 9 hour workday, I am usually dead tired by the time I get home at night. Not too energetic, that's for sure. I love the job and really don't mind the commute but man I could sure use more time off. However, there is so much good stuff happening with the job that I really do feel guilty even saying a peep about being tired.

Well must run. I do have some cards to post but will do that another time. I'd like my next post to be a photo or perhaps another page in my visual journal. We'll see.

Oh, Big Fat Woooohoooo. The new Golden Ears Bridge across the Fraser from Pitt Meadows/Maple Ridge to Langley/Surrey is finally finished. It took about 3 1/2 years to complete and it opens at midnight tonight so I get to take it to work tomorrow. Those in "the know" say it will save 40 minutes off the commute. Is that round trip I wonder? Probably. It will save me a ton of time so I'm very excited about it! Let's just hope I don't get lost!

Must run. Caio!

Sunday, June 07, 2009

We've had really hot weather here on the Coast. The weather was over 30 degrees celsius for several days last week - Wednesday was 36.5 degrees Celsius. I love the hot weather but I have to tell you that is too hot! I finally broke down and turned on the AC in my vehicle - I just could not take sitting in traffic in that heat for one more minute.

I've been in a swap recently so finally got around to completing some 4 X 4 pages. I was happy with the way they made up and I was able to use some of the extra pieces for cards so it all worked out well. I've never been a big fan of distress ink but used a green called "peeled paint" and I think I may be a convert. It was really nice and just took the project to another level.

My newest obsession(s) are nestabilities for die cuts and stickers and glitter. I haven't had a lot of time to play with the stickers yet but since I have a huge stack of Elizabeth Design stickers and Magenta stickers, I look forward to some experimentation.

Monday, May 18, 2009

Here's my latest journal page. It's still a work in progress - I've hit a bit of a wall - so it's untitled at this point. I'm not sure where to go next with it so will move on to a new page and come back to this one later. Hopefully, when I return to it, it'll tell me what I need to do.
My process was to go ahead and prepare all the pages in my journal but I'm not sure that I'll do it that way again. I find it limits me with my choice of image. Or maybe I just have no clue what I'm doing! In any case, next journal, I'll do a page or two at a time and sort of go with the flow. I like this one but find it very pink, not that that's a bad thing!

Sunday, May 10, 2009

Mother's all over the world are celebrating this special day with their families and loved ones. In light of that is seems appropriate to wish one and all a very wonderous and happy day. For those who have loved ones serving their country in foreign lands, my thoughts and prayers are with you and with them.

We haven't done much here in our house to celebrate this day. My dear daughter spoilt me with a gorgeous bouquet of long stemmed red roses. Red roses are very special to me as my dear husband always bought me these. Since he's gone she's taken up the tradition and I'm very touched and grateful for her thoughtfulness.

Despite losing my husband, now almost 15 months ago, I am very grateful for many things. My daughter has been a blessing and an inspiration to me, I am so grateful for her presence in my home and in my life. I am equally grateful for the love and support I've received from my friends since Garry died. I have no words to adequately describe how thankful I am to them for all the things they have done for me and for being a part of my life. I'm grateful that I am healthy, that my daughter is healthy and that we have a roof over our heads. My husband provided for us financially and made sure that we would be well taken care of if something happened to him and, for that, I'm eternally grateful.

Despite our loss and the pain that's still so fresh, I have much to be thankful for . Life is good and I couldn't ask for more.

Sunday, April 26, 2009

This is my first finished page in an Art Journal. Wooohooo! I've finally accomplished one of my goals and I think I may be hooked now.

I'm playing in a card exchange over at CST on Yahoo Groups. The premise is that you must use Magenta Art Stamps on your cards. I'm enjoying myself - Magenta has such wonderful stamps to play with and since I have quite a collection of them, I have lots to choose from.

I'm taking a class with Pam Carriker over at Creative Workshops. It's called Visual Journalism and I'm really enjoying it. It's given me that little push I needed to actually start working in an art journal and I'm sooooo glad I signed up for this course.
Here are a couple of the backgrounds I created. I used cheap craft paint (not all that happy with it) and next time I do some backgrounds I'll use better quality acrylics. I really like the transluscent look you achieve with the better paints - although there may not be anything wrong with the cheap craft store acrylics I used - I may have just been too heavy handed. Anyway, this is what the initial backgrounds look like. Unfortunately, I didn't think to scan the blue one before starting to embellish it so you're seeing the first baby steps on that one!

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

A few more of my new designs. These 3 D punchouts are fabulous - the finished results are quite amazing! The background paper is from Clipper Street - they have the most beautiful paper and I always end up buying more. It's much like Costco in that you need to buy it when you see it as it probably won't be there the next time. I usually drop some serious coin there! But what's a girl to do?

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Here are a couple of engagement cards I've made for the store. Not sure about the pink one - I'm thinking the colour of the cardstock might be wrong. Oh, well, trial and error. Sometimes lots of error!

I'm finally here to provide a little update on how things are going in my little corner of paradise. Since last I posted, I have made some headway on clearing the clutter and getting back on track. I'm gradually working through my "to do" list so I do have a sense of finally control of things that are long overdue in the "needing to be done" department.

My ensuite is 99 % finished and I'm so pleased with it. It turned out really well and it has the spa like feel that I was going for. The linen tower door has finally been installed (what a comedy of errors that was!) so that finishes it nicely. Now I'm just waiting for the tile man to come back and install a few more granite tiles as the trim and then we're good to go. I have new hardware to put up for the towels and toilet roll holder however have run into a little delay there - I found the actual hardware I bought but seem to have lost the mounting plate. I know it hasn't gone far, and suspect that it is somewhere in the pile of junk in the spare room, but at this point I'm not ready to tackle that mess yet so I'll just have to wait a little while longer. Will post pics some other time.

This weekend I had a 5 day weekend and I was able to accomplish a lot. The house finally got a good cleaning so now it actually looks like it's reasonably habitable. Still some clutter clearing to do but I did manage to go through a lot of the paper that had piled up so that's a good thing. Also - drum roll here please - I took my taxes to the accountant today. I'm filing for both DH and myself. I didn't file last year due to me just being overwhelmed after his sudden death, so I have 2 years to submit. Anyway I finally got everything together and it's now in the accountant's hands so that's one less thing to worry about.

On the art front, I'm taking an on-line course called Visual Journalism. I've just started but am running a little behind so don't have the first week's work completed yet - big surprise, that - but I'm really looking forward to being able to do some art for fun's sake. I've also managed to get a few cards made up for the store as well and am just waiting for approval to go ahead and make up.

My big project for this weekend was re-organizing the work room. I had toyed with all kinds of solutions, most of them expensive, and then opted for the very basic one that I always come back to and that seems to work the best. It's still a work in process as I'm trying to weed out the stuff I don't use, re-home some of it or donate to a school teacher I know. I have no idea how I got so much stuff - I don't even want to think about how much money I've spent on my art supplies and rubber stamps. It's absolutely scary! Anyway, I'm pleased with the progress I've made in re-working my studio and I think I'll be able to keep it up (fingers crossed). Pics to be posted at a later date.

Gotta run as I have a few more things I want to do before getting into my jammies. As this post is a little long, I'll post some pictures of the cards separately. I hope you enjoy them.

Sunday, March 22, 2009

Despite "best intentions" to the contrary, I have still not been able to get to any art :( I'm still fighting the cold/flu although I am gradually getting better. This weekend has been consumed with catching up and trying to deal with the clutter that has accumulated over the last several months. Where does all the paper come from?

I managed to wade through much of the stack that has taken over my kitchen table. While not exactly clean yet, there are clean spots on it and I've thrown a lot of stuff out. I seem to be spending a lot of time moving things from one pile to the other, but I did manage to send a fairly large bag to the recylcling bin. I was also successful in uncovering one of my counters which has not seen the light of day for several months. I would have liked to get more accomplished but Rome was definitely not built in a day and my clutter problem did not just develop overnight.

Saturday, March 07, 2009

Still sick with this lousy cold. I haven't had a bad cold like this in years. I've spent most of the last two days in bed, dosing myself with hot toddies and Nyquil and I'm not seeing a whole lot of improvement. Looks like it's going to be a couple of more days before I'm feeling up to par.

Today I really wanted to stay in bed all day but I had an appointment at the bank so had to get up and get on the road. I'm not happy with the bank I'm presently dealing with (I've been a customer for almost 40 years) but since husband died, it just seems to be one problem after another. I have threatened to leave numerous times and finally have just had enough. So I've switched over to the Credit Union here in town and I'm impressed with them already. I have another appointment next Saturday and hopefully most everything will be done by then.

My next stop was at the see the optometrist about my new glasses. Unfortunately, the owner wasn't in today and her clerk was less than helpful. After she walked away and left me for another customer when I needed her help, I figured I'll just go back when the owner is there. Not sure I trust this twit to know what the heck she's doing.

I decided to treat myself to a "Big Shot". Three hundred dollars later, I'm good to go. So many new toys, so little time. I can't wait until I'm feeling better so I can play with this gadget. I think it will take my cards to a whole new level.

Well must go back to bed......boring! Thank God I have a TV in my room!


Friday, March 06, 2009

Well we're finally home and I've been back to work since Tuesday. By Wednesday I was coming down with a cold and had to leave work early on Thursday because I was sick, sick, sick! I'm home today and have spent most of the last 24 hours in bed trying to fight off this darn cold! Not nice!

I haven't even touched anything remotely close to art supplies and probably won't for several more days. However, I am looking forward to creating again. I find the month holiday is always good for me as it allows me to re-charge my creative batteries.

I'm off to bed again.....will post again soon.


Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Well the clock is ticking down and we only have 3 1/2 days left here in sunny Palm Springs. The weather was good this trip - just not as good as last year. However, this last week has been fabulous - very hot and sunny - so we've enjoyed our last few days of pool time. I'm golfing Thursday and Saturday and then we'll be packing up and leaving for Vancouver on Sunday.

I've enjoyed this trip but may do it a little differently next year. There are leave restrictions where I work due to the 2010 Olympics and the Para Olympics being hosted in Whistler and the Vancouver area. I'm not really sure when I will be able to get time off - I just know there's a freeze for February and possibly into March so will have to play it by ear. This trip was a little more challenging since DH was not hear with us. We had some family challenges and my daughter had some health challenges due to the hot weather so we may need to make some changes next year.

I will be sorry to go home. However, as the trip winds down, I find myself thinking about work again so I guess that's as it should be. Will update the blog once I get back in town and things are back to normal.


Friday, February 13, 2009

Just a very quick update. I'm enjoying my stay in Palm Springs but have very limited access to my laptop due to wifi issues. Not sure when I'll be able to post again. I'll definitely be back up and running the first week of March so please check back then for updates. I'm very disappointed that I can't post more but technology is not cooperating!


Thursday, January 29, 2009

We arrived in Palm Springs safely last night and are settled into the hotel until tomorrow morning. We'll be checking out, going for breakfast and then over to the rental office to pick up the keys for the house. We're looking forward to getting settled in the house and enjoying a couple of days before the rellies arrive.

The trip through the border was slow and we were pulled in for a secondary screening. Not sure what they were looking for but they didn't seem to want to believe that we were who we were saying we were or that we were really coming down to Palm Springs for a month. I did ask why we'd been stopped but they never did tell us what the problem was. They even called my home to verify our story with the house sitter - then they sent us on our merry way. Very weird!

Our hotel room is freshly painted and decorated and the pool area is nice. I was able to have the pool to myself this afternoon. I spent a couple of hours out there by the pool catching the rays, did a little time in the hot tub and then back in the pool again. I don't know what the temperature was today but it was warm.....Heaven!

Saturday, January 03, 2009

New Years Day was a lovely day and a fabulous start to the new year. We shared our first dinner of the year with some very good friends. I served my signature Prime Rib which, I must say was scrumptious ! Good food, good company and a fabulous day - what more could one ask for on the first day of the year?

We're having snow on the coast again today. The snow started sometime during the night and has continued for most of today. It's cold and everything looks so clean. This will be almost 2 weeks of snowfall and cold weather - very unusual here on the balmy coast. I took several pictures for posterity - I particularly like this one and I hope you enjoy it as well!

Thursday, January 01, 2009

Happy New Year to one and all! I hope you had a wonderous New Year's Eve and that the coming year offers lots of new challenges and wonderful opportunities.

I'm not real big on New Year's resolutions, mainly because I don't usually keep them! However, in the interest of trying to form better habits and having some consistency, I will make a couple of resolutions. One of my goals is to post to my blog, at least once per week. I hope to post more frequently than that but will consider my resolution met if I can post weekly.

I also have a Live Journal for the personal minutae of my life and I post to this quite frequently. I'm hoping to transfer this habit to LAST WORDZ so posting here becomes part of my weekly routine as well. What will I post? I have no idea! Previously, I tried to restrict myself to art related things. I promise that I won't be doing any "overshares", however, I will probably be engaging in more non-related art posts with the occasional (or perhaps more than occasional? ) rant thrown in.

Another goal is to spend more time on my art. I seem to be caught in this routine of only doing the "work" of the art and not really the "joy" of the art. I'd really like to stretch my art muscles and plan to work at that in the coming year. One of the things I'd like to explore are more 30 minute collages. Last year my goal (which I did not even come close to meeting) was to complete one collage a week. For many reasons, some of them completely beyond my control, that did not happen! I also want to create, and work consistently in an art journal. Perhaps I can incorporate the 30 minute collages into the art journal?

Many years ago, I graduated from university with a degree in English and Sociology. I know, weird combination but it seemed like a good idea at the time!. Throughout the many years since, the theme of "words" has followed me. My vocabulary has grown immensely - I've always been really anal about spelling, syntax and flow in any written document. At one time I thought I would write a book - that never happened. However, lately I've had snippets of poetry floating in my brain. Often I'll get variations of the same verse or theme for several days and then "the muse " goes in a different direction. I want to follow " the muse" and actually put those words, phrases and verses to paper. I just need to get past the fear of the blank page - it does intimidate me !

This year has, in many ways, been MY "annus terriblus" - I think that was the term Queen Elizabeth used several years ago when referring to all the problems which had occurred during the previous year. My husband's death threw just about everything into chaos. We miss him terribly and after 9 months I can still say that there is not a day that goes by that I don't think of him a hundred times or more. However, my daughter and I have survived this event and we're rebuilding our lives. It's been tough for both of us but we're both strong, far stronger than either of us knew, and we're moving forward. I still feel his calm presence and I know that he's very happy with how we're moving forward.

What lies ahead in this new year? No one knows. Life isn't a set script that is set in stone and never changes. It's what happens when we're making other plans. Life isn't for sissies - it can be tough, challenging and painful but also so very full and rewarding. My wish for all of you is that 2009 be fabulous! May you and yours have a healthy, happy and prosperous year. May your troubles be few and your rewards many. All the best in 2009!