Thursday, October 2, 2014

I Am A Fortress

When I was small,  I constructed a vault.  It was where I hid the sadness I had as a very young child, a bit broken from my parent's divorce.  

It was where I ran and hid the hurts.  Bullies.  Silly girl fights.  The walls were thin.  At a young age, I started constructing strong walls.  In order to be perceived as strong?  All those things had to be hidden well.

As I grew, I started erecting layers. 

By the time I reached my teen years, I had a castle.

Now?  I have a fortress.   
There is a courtyard where I let people I first meet hang out.  It's the "pretty open" Heidi.  I'm guessing that most people think it is the REAL Heidi.  The "open and out there" Heidi.  And I confess, I don't hide much from that public.  

Friendly acquaintances are allowed into the actual castle.  Its just the keeping room, however.  A warm fireplace.  Some chairs.  Come on in and sit down.  You get to learn about the things I'm not hiding, but don't often think to share.

Good friends and family are allowed deeper accesses into the maze of hallways and doorways. 

And then.  There is the vault.  It is deep.  It is dark.  It is impenetrable.  Before Jamie.  I would occasionally allow good friends and family in.  Just enough so they could see all the safety deposit boxes along the wall.  Not to open them.   But just to see the collection.

After Jamie was born,  I only allowed my husband.  I felt that it was too much for others to handle. Too dark.  Too depressing.  But even he is chased out by the very large, snapping, barking dogs that are guarding the vault.  

And lately, I haven't even wanted to be in that vault.    The doors have been locked and sealed tight for awhile.


I realize because of my decision to lock that vault, Butterfly Kisses has suffered.  I have been taking a long time to go through the overwhelming list of requests.  Working on them, for sure.  But slowly.  Without enthusiasm.  I'm honestly not sure if it was my fault that I couldn't bring myself to be urgent.  Or if it was the overwhelming list.   No fault.  No blame.  It just is.

And here I am.  It's October.  The vault was cracked open today.  Her birthday is only 13 days away now.   And the dogs are sleeping inside.  So maybe I will go in and spend some time.  Reacquaint myself with the grief.  The hurt.  The everything.

I'm hoping it propels me to move more quickly on the list.  No promises.  The reality?  My life is busy with the four boys here on this earth.  I treasure the fact that I DO have them and can be busy with them.  But I know many others are waiting on me.  For me to help memorialize their precious little ones.  

I promised Jamie that I would see this endeavor through.  No matter what.  To pay forward the kindness I have encountered in the last five years.

  I owe her and myself that.

Thank you for being patient....

Friday, November 30, 2012

My Full Confession

I am in a wee bit of trouble with family and friends...but I am used to it.  I kinda/sorta run on the adage "It's easier to beg for forgiveness, then ask for permission".
  But in this case, beg for forgiveness with good news than worry everyone over nothing...


Here is the deal.  I had surgery Monday. 

 I had a mass in my right axillary removed.  The non-delicate armpit. While I was under general anesthesia, my surgeon also fixed a umbilical hernia I had.  The hernia was most likely a result of my pretty weak abdomen after it received so much stretching during my pregnancy with Jamie Lynn and then Button's quick arrival to the crime scene.  Severely excessive amniotic fluid and big babies in your uterus result in muscle gaps of about 2-4 inches.

 Yup...I am asked about 1-2 times a week if I am pregnant or when my due date is.  Nice.
 Suffice it to say, my guts decided to take advantage of the weakness and poke through!
As for the mass? It was non-cancerous!! Simply a cyst with a sidepocket of infection, was the description.  It fooled us for a bit because it behaved like a hard non-tender lymph my doctors were worried, I was a "wee" bit worried but trying to be super confident all would be well.  Mr. Boss was VERY worried the past two months. 

And because of all the worry?  I didn't want anyone else to be added to the stress and worry.

  Mr. Boss's family has a significant breast cancer history and my very own maternal aunt was recently diagnosed this summer with a rare breast cancer.  Then there was also some lymphoma discussion.  But I kept going back to "Why worry over something that ends up being nothing?"

However, if thought you noticed a frenetic, panicked tone to my WIP posts and my to do list lately?  

There was.

  Reason Number One: I knew that I was going to be laid up simply because we all know surgery is no fun.  I did not want any obligations left out there hanging.  I hate feeling like I let someone down! Unfortunately, I was not able to finish my do. good stitches quilting or work on a commissioned applique job for a quilt.   But I am trying not to be too frustrated about it!

Reason Number Two:  The near future after the surgery was unknown.  I had to realistically "go there" so that I was prepared for the worst.  I already had a million and one diagnostic appts and pre-op appts beforehand, I couldn't fathom what I had in stored if I was given the dreaded "C-word" option.


So here I am....hanging out on a couch or a chair....recovering.  Thankful that I don't have cancer.  I am not naive to think that I am free and clear in the future, but I know I am safe, for now.  My incisions were a lot bigger than I anticipated.  My hernia ended up being bigger than my surgeon anticipated, but the recovery is much less worse than my two c-sections.  My arm?  Which happens to be my dominant...SEWING....arm is swollen, numb at times, and painful.  I even have a few zings and zangs from shoulder to finger. I am THANKFUL that my doctor was so thorough and made sure there was nothing else there or nothing left behind.  I am HOPEFUL, that it will all heal properly and well.

In short. 

 I am not able to sew right now.  No quilts.  No Butterfly Kisses right now.  

In the meantime?  

I am planning my UFOs and WIPs schedules and planning some other "to dos".

I still have a few projects to share in the next few days that I was able to complete before our Magical Thanksgiving trip and my surgery. 

And I have quite a few goodies arriving in the mail because I did shop for some Black Friday deals this past weekend!!!!!

(Cross-posted on Buttons and Butterflies)

Thursday, November 8, 2012

Recent Butterfly Kisses

I realized recently, that it has been awhile since I have shared some projects.

I thought I'd show them in their various states.  Proofs and finished!

Without futher ado....
A few shirts for some Molly Bears.  


A special request.  This momma had a Farmall quilt made for her husband.

I did her oldest living daughter's prints.

And then sweet baby Dalton's prints in the middle.  

There is an empty third spot for her future rainbow baby!

Proofs for footprints

and handprints.


And one of my favorites!  A heart applique.

I love Button's hand gently touching this as I took a photo.

On a lovey!  This blanket had a teddy head.  I mimicked the heart applique based on the already exisiting heart.

I have three blankets and pillowcases in various stages as we speak before the holidays.

I will be taking a break for a few weeks to catch my breathe!

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

A Fundraiser

This post was partly drafted well before Sunday and was due to be published on Monday, but, alas, a bug called "The Flu" came in swiftly, ravaging our family, taking out every man, woman, and child in our home!

I am asking you to pretend that today is Monday.

The official Pregnancy/Infant Loss Awareness Day.  


Today is about Violet's Quilt.  One of my Butterfly Kisses Quilts.
 The one where I played with purple/violet flying geese and designed a violet embroidery design.

I never got a chance to post the finished project because I was over anxious to get it in the mail and to her mom.   Luckily, her mom took one for me!

I cringe when I see this photo because it is all wrinkled and wonky.  I swear it wasn't before I sent it! I guess I need to wrap things like that better?  At least I hope it straightened out for Devany since the day she pulled it out in that photo!!

Who's Devany?  Devany is Violet's mom,  and is a blogger over at Still Playing At School.  We found each other through the vastly growing "babyloss" online community.
Devany also happens to be a Scentsy consultant.

She, apparently, was so appreciative that she decided she was going to run a 2 week online fundraiser for Butterfly Kisses.  Any orders that she receives will be shipped out directly to the customer, anywhere in the country (sometimes the world).  ALL of her commission (25%) from this "party" will come to Butterfly Kisses!  She wouldn't take no for an answer from me.

 I do my Butterfly Kisses embroidery at no charge.  I am trying to keep it that way, but with shipping it gets to be a bit much sometimes if "traffic" is busy or items are large!  I sometimes receive small donations, and I ABSOLUTELY appreciate it.  However, things are not so cheap these days.  My costs sometimes lie in the threads and fabric depending on if I am using my already established supplies or not.  However, the real costs lie in the stabilizer I have to buy for my embroidery machine and the shipping.  Occasionally, I also donate an entire quilt if I feel that it is necessary.
If you are interested in buying something like a warmer, hand soap, bath tablets, drawer scent name it... please go check out Devany's Scentsy Website.  It would be sincerely appreciated.  When you are ready to buy, you just click on the left side that says "Buy From Party".   She has a designated a Butterfly Kisses Party that you can order from.

Thank you Devany for doing this for me.  I don't deserve it!

Dual Posting with Buttons and Butterflies

Saturday, July 14, 2012

She follows me everywhere

I have thought I was spoiled because butterflies are all over our yard. 

Busch Gardens Europe, Williamsburg, Virginia

But she managed to show up on our trip at least once or twice, or even MANY times a day!

Busch Gardens, Williamsburg, Virginia
Imagine our shock as we stood outside the Natural History Museum in Washington D.C. and a little girl put on a GIANT pair of butterfly wings.  I didn't take a picture because I thought it was awkward to take one of someone that I didn't know! But this is what she looked like.

Butterfly Costume

And when I finally captured one of the many while we were at Colonial Williamsburg, Virginia.

I thought it was fitting because I LOOOOVE that place and would have loved to take my little girl and dress up in a colonial dress and hat for the day with her.

Needless, to say, I am happy to be home, and will now accept items!  And I have one Butterfly Kiss quilt commission to work on ASAP!

Friday, June 29, 2012

With Love Filled Wishes....

A friend of mine sent this to me. 

I adore her.  I love the butterfly. 

Love the little heart.  And the fact that I have some other Precious Moment Figurines for other special occasions, like my wedding cake topper, is pretty cool.

However, how amazing is it that the name of it matches the name I use for my blog and embroidery charity?

I love how she watches over me on a shelf in my studio.
Right above the area that is the workhorse of Butterfly Kisses!!!!

Thank you so much Sandra.....she is perfect!!!!!!