Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Autumn Punkins Complete

I'm happy to announce that the two Autumn WIPs I was working on this past week or so are now complete. In fact, the Midnight Pumpkin shown above has already sold!  :)

Happy Monday and wishing all of my bloggy friends a wonderful week!

Now...off to catch up on all of the Sunday Sketches! I do apologize for the delay in visiting.

Sunday, August 28, 2011

Sunday Sketches

Hello and WELCOME to another Sunday Sketches.  First off, let me thank Heather of Rose Hill Designs once more for hosting our lovely co-op while I was away the last two weeks visiting my very ill father and all.

I've been trying to focus on some new handmade watercolour cards for my Etsy shop with the holidays quickly approaching. As most of you know, I'm a lover of Autumn through Christmas and have managed to produce, to much of my amazement, some nice cards thus far.  For now, above are some more splotch birdies.  :)

Now, off to visit everyone else.  Happy SS! :)

This week's participants:
Please sign-up below to submit your sketch for this week, which will also allow others to stop and visit.

Grab the Sunday Sketches button here.


Friday, August 26, 2011

Autumn WIPs

I'm really longing for Autumn to arrive in my cozy, little town. As I sit here with a hot cuppa in hand, I close my eyes and imagine the leaves turning to their familiar golden yellow, bright red and crisp orange colours.  Ahhh.  Oh well, until then, here's an update on my current WIPs that are coming along better than expected.

Happy Paint Party Friday!  Make sure to hop over to here and visit everyone else's lovely projects.

Thursday, August 25, 2011

Afternoon Doodles

Just a few doodles this afternoon as I slowly recoup and settle back down into life as much as possible, considering things.  I've been wanting to start work on some Autumn and Birthday cards, so here's a start.

PS Thank you to Lori at Elvie Studio for her inspiration on the birthday chicks.  Of course, hers are far more adorable than mine could ever be, but I certainly loved the creative challange. :)

Thank you for your continued thoughts and prayers.

Monday, August 22, 2011

Teach Me

©2010-2011 ~Potapova

Before I left to visit my father, my good friend, Anne, shared with me that facing death is one of the most difficult things to do and that its impact on an individual is pretty much permanent.  Nevertheless, I still tried to prepare myself before stepping onto the plane, but let me tell you there wasn't anything I could have done to truly ready myself for what I faced this past week.

Death doesn't just touch you once and then it's gone.  It touches you in many different ways and almost always grabs ahold of you when you least expect it.  Its grip can be emotional and/or physical.  Every time I felt like I could breathe, that the "worst" was over, another blow came along and reminded all over again of what I was facing.  Sometimes, it was quite crippling and took a few hours to recover.

Since I've returned home, it's been said that I look different and how my appearance comes across gentle and beautiful in a new way.  At first, I was puzzled and then immediately remembered the words..."Death changes a person in ways you could never imagine."

I believe it has impacted me through my father in ways that I'll never forget.  However, will I allow it to haunt me or allow it to continue to teach me how fragile life is, to never take things for granted, big or small?

NOTE:  Please know, my father has not yet passed.  He is very, very ill and is dying.  This trip is the last time I know I'll see him.  Facing that and how death is consuming him has been extremely difficult.  Thank you for your continued thoughts and prayers.

Saturday, August 20, 2011

Sunday Sketches

Once again, I've asked Heather of Rose Hill Designs to host our weekly co-op.  I arrived home very late last night from visiting with my father, but need some time to recoup.

It was great to see everyone still sharing and encouraging one another in art last week and I'm looking forward to viewing your new pieces again this week.

So, please pop on over to Heather's and join in for another wonderful week of Sunday Sketches.  And yes, Sunday Sketches will be back here next week. :)

Friday, August 19, 2011

Saying Goodbye...

Late afternoon is approaching and I'm now sitting alone and facing the fact of having said goodbye to my father just a few hours ago.  This week has been one incredible whirlwind of emotions; good and bad.  Although I tried to prepare myself in advance, it never touched the surface of what I faced over the last five days.

When I first walked into my father's room on Monday, I felt numb and not yet ready to face the reality of things.  But as the curtain was pulled and my father turned to look at me, every mental support structure within my mind began to crumble.  I walked up to my barely recognizable dad, gently put my arms around him and we both cried for what seemed like forever.

As the week rolled by, subtle things began to catch my attention reminding me of my father's condition.  Things such as jaundice skin that was ice cold to the touch, bones protruding all over from significant weight loss, eyes that were no longer a bright blue but grey and clouded over, and so on.

Sitting here in the airport from a delayed flight, my heart is completely heavy.  Let me tell you how many times I have now broken down here in my seat, running all the memories of this past week through my mind.

I will find myself curled up under a pile of blankets in my own bed tonight but it will never provide the comfort of such grief and loss found in my heart at this very moment.

Thursday, August 18, 2011

Happy Birthday

It's my birthday today and I will be celebrating it with my father, as well as my aunt and uncle.  The best gift today is getting to create one of the last few memories with him and sharing it with you.  Nothing could ever take the place of that.  :)

Monday, August 15, 2011

Flying to Daddy

Sunday, August 14th, 2011, 9:01 PM

It’s approaching late evening on this Sunday night. My stomach is extremely queasy as I try to mentally prepare myself for what I’m about to see/face. I take a peek out the window to my right and catch a glimpse of the tops of white, billowy clouds that only those at ‘home’ can see from below. For a brief moment, I feel lucky and blessed to capture such an incredible view.

As I travel home to see my father for the very last time, thoughts tumble and swirl through my weary mind. My tummy rumbles and I shiver in my seat, as I long for the solitude of my cozy little apartment and a hot cuppa to soothe one aching heart and soul. I want to climb into my big, lofty bed piled high with blankets, cover up my head and sleep until it feels safe to step out into the world once again.

Sunday, August 14, 2011

Sunday Sketches w/Heather

Hello and happy Sunday Sketches to all of my bloggie peeps. :) While I'm away from home, I've asked Heather of Rose Hill Designs to host our weekly co-op. So, please, pop on over to Heather's and continue to play along. Your art will be very uplifting for my father and I. Hugs to everyone and thank you, Heather.

Heading Home...

Photo by: ©2010-2011 ~aimeelikestotakepics

It's been a long few days since I was last out here in the bloggy world.  Please know how much I appreciate everyone's ongoing thoughts and prayers during such a difficult time.  It means more than my heart could ever express.

I was able to speak to my father only for a brief moment, but long enough for him to cry and plead with me to get there ASAP.  I was heartbroken and knew it said alot about his current condition.  I'm thankful as out of nowhere two people offered immediately to cover the cost of my flight so I can go see my father one last time.  My gratitude for such kindness makes me completely speechless.

I will be leaving soon but plan to touch base with my peeps as much as possible.

If you desire, you can make a donation to the charity of my father's choice:

I received a call on Thursday morning informing me that my dad has 3 choices before him regarding his health and what to do.  Not easy decisions, let me tell you.

1.  Surgery - He can opt, yet again, for another surgery - this one being a very serious and critical surgery.  It's not a guarantee for anything but could possibly give him some more time.

2.  Hospital stay - The doctors would admit my father to a special hospital where he would be placed on medications to make him comfortable as possible and have staffing to care for him until he passes.

3.  Home stay - The doctors would place my father on medications to make him comfortable as possible until he passes.

Not easy decisions to be faced with, let me tell you, but we're all pushing through as best we can.

Once again, thank you for your kind words, love and support.

In my absence, Heather has been so gracious to host Sunday Sketches while I'm away.  Look for a special post on Sunday, providing directions, etc.  Although I won't be participating, I'll definitely be visiting everyone for some cheer and love.

Friday, August 12, 2011

Appreciating Life

I love the photo above as it’s one of the many taken the last time I saw my father. How ironic that during that time in my life, my father was taking care of me, as I was recovering from major liver surgery. He loved photography; a passion we both have in common and for the first (and only time) I was able to share that with him.

Isn’t it funny how it sometimes takes devastating things to get us to actually see life and the beauty contained within it? How many times do we take our life, as well as those we love, for granted, not giving a second thought that today may be the last time we have the opportunity to give a hug, a peck on the cheek or to simply say – I love you?

I sat on the floor of the hallway at work not long ago this morning, tears streaming, as my father’s doctor informed me that the results from yesterday’s procedure showed his cancer is at the worst stage possible. Because of this, they're encouraging family to call or see him over the next week or so.

The chapter, “Good bye, daddy” is about to close in my book of life, so I’d like to end it with a few words to my dad:

Dear daddy,

Although life brought much heartache from the very beginning, I’m so thankful that God spared your life long enough to heal things between us. Thank you for all of the wonderful, loving and encouraging words over the last several months; asking me for your forgiveness for the things you had done and wished you had done - telling me how much you love me and how much you are proud of me and the woman I have become.

The BEST memory you could have ever given me was allowing me to pray with you as you gave your heart back to Jesus.

See you in Heaven, daddy.

Your little girl xo

Monday, August 08, 2011

Needing my bloggie peeps...TEARS

As of last week, my father’s blockages have significantly gotten worse, along with not being able to eat, sleep, etc. - for weeks now.

I just received a call that my father is in severe pain and is being transferred to a hospital a few hours away that can better meet his current needs.  I was also informed that recent test results show the radiation and chemo he went through not long ago did NOT help and that his cancer is actually worse than even my father or our family realized. Ugh.

I'm sobbing at my desk and would appreciate your thoughts and prayers to get through this work day.

Thank you.


Sunday, August 07, 2011

Sunday Sketches - Firefly Wishes

(Photos accidentally deleted. Bummer)

Hello and welcome to another Sunday Sketches...in August, no less! It's a special month for several reasons.  Can you guess what the BEST reason is?

For awhile now, I've had this idea of lightening bugs (aka Fireflies) going around in my head but could never quite decide the best way to depict them on paper until now.  I'm really loving the piece above and hope it will encourage someone along the way to keep BELIEVING regardless of what life leaves at your doorstep.

Lightening bugs bring a smile to my face as I have so many different memories from my childhood.  My favourite memory is taking an old glass jar/lid and running out back into my neighbor's back yard and having a contest to see who could catch the most lightening bugs in five minutes.  Now, I don't know if anyone could really count that many bugs flying around in the jar, but it sure was fun and kept us busy for a good portion of the night.

How about you?  Any memories of those special bugs that can light up the darkest of nights?

This week's participants:
Please sign-up below to submit your sketch for this week, which will also allow others to stop and visit.

Grab the Sunday Sketches button here.


Friday, August 05, 2011

Tea Cups and Lightning Bugs

It feels like I've finally risen above the rubbish that was pulling me down this past week.  Uh huh.  Yes, I have and thank you  to everyone for your warm thoughts and prayers.  I appreciate it more than you know.

Above are a few watercolour doodle ideas that have been floating around in my head for a few days.  Believe it or not, I'm already thinking ahead to the holidays.  Imagine that!

Me + Christmas = a very happy girl.  :D

Please stop by and visit the other Paint Party Friday folks.  It's a lot of fun and so uplifting!

Tuesday, August 02, 2011

Tossing up Whispers

I have so much on my mind tonight yet unable to find a way to express all that weighs on this tired and fragile heart.

I've cried alot of tears as of late, kneeling at my bedside asking God this and that and sometimes even whispering the words into my hands, "I can't do this anymore."   Yet somehow, I wake up every day with the strength and motivation to face another day.  I amaze myself at times.  Seriously.

Tonight, I'll take my evening stroll and toss up to the Heavens whispers of the deepest parts of my heart.
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