Friday, August 30, 2013

"You should be fine. I love you... bye bye."

Those were the last words that my mom said to me... left in a message in voicemail shortly before she died.

I believe my Mom with all my heart.  I will be fine.  But what is different now, is my new definition of "fine".  It doesn't mean what it used to for me anymore.  And some days I want to cry out to wherever she may be "I'm not fine!  I can't be fine... not without you!" Yesterday was one of those days.  A day filled with tears in private moments and blinking them back to carry on when faced with other people and the daily tasks of my life.  I wanted to just slink away into some dark space.  A place that matched the reality of my own mind that was dwelling in those darkest of places.  Shut it all out. Make it all go away and sink slowly into my own pain, longing and sorrow.

Naturally- I cried out in the only way that I knew how to and posted on facebook.  I didn't want to speak to anyone directly or in person, but I needed someone, anyone, to know that I was hurting.  And the love that poured forth?  Nothing short of a miraculous and beautiful gift.  Words that when I read them, make me cry tears of gratitude and joy.  I am not alone.  People understand.  And people care enough to take time out of their days to say something.  And what was said?  I can't even begin to convey the power and the beauty of the words.  They carried me through, holding my hand to pull me out of the dark and scary places that I sometimes travel to.

I glanced in the mirror before leaving the house today and was struck to see my mom staring back at me.  Guiding me.  Letting me know she is with me always.  I carry her, her legacy, her love and her being within myself.  I'm not alone.  I can do this, and I will be fine.  Because she taught me how to be.

""Everyday I become a little more like my mother… and I couldn’t be prouder"

Yesterday was a hard day. Today I choose to acknowledge her strength and wisdom that she instilled in me and carry on and upwards knowing I am not alone.

Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Scrap & Music #9- I Still Haven't Found What I'm Looking For

So excited to share a new Scrap & Music layout with you.  The song this time was U2s I Still Haven't Found What I'm Looking For.  I chose the lyrics "only to be with you" to be the title of my page for this picture of Vivi and Drew.


Thank you so much for looking! :)


Saturday, August 24, 2013

be soft

Lately I've noticed a trend, especially amongst women, of having to appear hard, bad ass, a take no shit type of person.  I am no stranger to these feelings and the desire to be every one of those things.  Life throws us curveballs.  We go through hell and back again and we desire to never, ever go back there.  We build up walls that we try to believe is our strength, when in reality is a fortress of all of those feelings of vulnerability and insecurity, hurt and sorrow that we are desperate to find relief from.


I've learned through my own painful experiences that those times where I was hard, I was "strong" and stoic, a bad ass who didn't take any shit from anyone I was little more than a lost, confused and wounded person running away and hiding from everything that I needed to face.  In my "strength" I damaged myself, my relationships and my well being in order to protect myself.  I was locked up in the walls of everything that I was hiding from and I was being who I now know that I never want to be.

Yes, we have to forge ahead and be strong when life spins madly out of control.  But I think that what is really strong is to be soft.  Be open.  Be vulnerable.  Because until we face our world head on and with an open mind and heart, we haven't begun to heal.  

I'll leave you with this that says it better than I ever could.


Friday, August 16, 2013

the energy you bring...

A couple of years ago I was watching Oprah (yes, I miss her show!) and she had a guest on, Dr. Jill Bolte Taylor who had given her a sign for her space.  When I heard the words, I knew I wanted one in my home too.  So I made one today.  This is so truly important in any space.  Take responsibility for the energy you bring. This will be a good daily reminder for my family.
Thanks for stopping by today! :)


Monday, August 12, 2013

Scrap & Music #8- A Thousand Years

I am so excited to share my first layout for the Scrap & Music design team!  You can find the sketch and the song for challenge #8 here.

The song inspiration is from Christina Perri's 'A Thousand Years'.  I loved the line that goes "Time stands still... beauty in all she is" so I used that for my title of this layout of Vivi.
Supplies used: Cosmo Cricket patterned paper and diecut tags, My Mind's Eye chipboard, Little Yellow Bicycle crocheted flowers, American Crafts thickers, Doodlebug alphabet stickers, Michael's paper roses, Stickles, hand-dyed Wilton paper doilies, embroidery floss, Martha Stewart paper punches, vintage GirlScouts song book page.

Thank you so much for stopping my blog today! :)

Thursday, August 8, 2013

on friendship...

Something that has been on my mind a lot lately is friendship.  Specifically, the friendships that I have with other women in life.

Friendship has not always been a smooth road for me in my life.  Like in love, I fall hard for people, I fall completely, I would do anything for people and I have been hurt by friendships as painfully as a hurt from a lover.

I've lashed out, blocked out and pushed away the people that I have needed the most in my life.  Because it's scary for me to need people and at the end of the day, it's always been hard for me to believe that I could be wanted by somebody else, not for what I can give, but for who I am.  I haven't always known what to do with the very thing I need and believe in the most, a friend who truly does love at all times.

This last year, I would not have survived if it were not for the friends that I have.  An amazing circle of women who uplift, inspire and drive me to be a better person.  They also have helped me hold it together when I thought I would surely fall apart, they have helped me believe in myself, they saw value in me when I could not see it in myself.

Most importantly, they have let me know that I am not alone in this world.  I have friends by my side who will catch me when I fall or let me fall safely into the comfort of their loving arms. Because sometimes we need to fall apart.  But we need a safe place to do so. And I have my safe places.  So many people who I can turn to.  From friendships of almost twenty years, to friends I have never actually met- to the ones I see almost daily to the ones who I may never even meet... I am surrounded with the strength, love, compassion, nurturing and inspiration that only women can provide for other women.  These women are my soul mates.  My sisters.  Life would not be complete without them and I am so very grateful for each and every one of them.

I am so, so grateful that I am not alone.


Wednesday, August 7, 2013

Back to School

It's hard to believe that as I sit down to write this, Roslyn is off at her third day of the third grade.  Here in Arizona, we're already back to school and it seemed like the summer truly flew by.

I'm not one of those parents who rejoice at back to school time honestly.  My days are sweeter and easier with Roslyn here with me, so it's always a rough adjustment.  But nothing beats that feeling I get when I see her come out of the building when I pick her up.

This year feels huge and like a turning point somehow.  THIRD GRADE.  She officially has less of elementary school ahead of her and more of it already behind her.  This year and two more years before she goes off to middle school.  It's crazy to think about.  She's going to be learning to write in cursive, multiplication, division and so much more.  I know that she is more than ready for everything to come... and slowly but surely, I am accepting that the girl who I still see in my mind from the first day of kindergarten is growing up.  Fast.  Right before my very eyes.



And she is ready.  She is so smart.  So kind.  So loving.  So caring.  She is responsible and she tries her hardest in everything that she does.  She takes pride in herself and her learning and she's got this.  Every step of the way, she is leaping.

While I might not always feel ready for her growing up, I am growing right along side her as a mama.  And I am so very proud of her and everything that she is and will be.


Thursday, August 1, 2013

Some exciting news!

Today I get to share some news that I have been holding onto for a few days and I am so excited about!

I've been selected to join the design team of Scrap & Music!  This a great international challenge site that I've been following for a while now, that incorporates two of my very favorite things, music and scrapbooking.  You can see the design team announcement here.  I am thrilled to be joining such an amazing team, getting to design with designers from all around the world!

Sandra Jean – Canada
---> Rachel Hall – USA (that's me!  YAY!) <---
Carolina Schulz – Chile
Ro Miqueletto – Brazil
Carole Charrier – France
Denyse B├ędard  – Canada
Rita Ribeiro – Brazil
Kylie Symons – Australia

I am working away on the first challenge now, I can't wait to share with y'all soon!