Thursday, November 27, 2008

What to wish for...what to wish for...

from a turn of the century Christmas book- I had just 6 pages from it, and I made a set of these.

so what do I wish for? mostly I just want my son to be delighted at Christmas, and I would like good food to eat that day, really tasty things:-)

and to those that really know me, you probably already know what I would like:-)

Monday, November 24, 2008

Bell's Palsy and Labor

So this is my contribution to the internet regarding Bell's Palsy and labor. When I got Bell's Palsy after having my son, there was NOTHING online about it. So here it public service message:-)

I had a healthy pregnancy with my son. I watched a million hours of Discovery Health birthing shows during the pregnancy, but there was nothing about Bell's Palsy in the shows I watched and I never would have believed this would happen to me.

I had an unusually long labor. 40+ hours. This was due to my small pelvis (and an exceptionally long labor progression time is evident of that). During this long amount of time I was happily given an epidural that was fully loaded:-) and one or two additional doses. I was also given pottosin to help speed things along. During this time I became very swollen in my face, legs, etc etc. I didn't realize it at the time but my mom told me later. (Also, I realized it a day after my surgery when I couldn't feel my legs when I touched them, although I could walk and stand, etc.)

After two hours of pushing, I was given a c-section. I spent two hours in recovery, then I was able to hold my son. I had a normal few days at the hospital, and went home just fine.

Five days after the birth I was eating a sandwich at home (I think I'd been home 24 hours) and I thought I was having a stroke. I couldn't eat right. I called my mom who is an RN and asked if a side effect of my meds would give me a stroke. She told me to call the dr. and they told me to go to ER.

I RAN (post c-section!!! and holding my lower stomach:-)) into the ER while my husband parked the car with my son. I thought I was truly having a stroke and that the drs just HAD to stop this because I had a newborn to take care of!

I was told I had Bell's Palsy and that they would give me a steroid and an antibiotic to lessen the severity. They said that I should stop breastfeeding due to the steroid. I opted to NOT take the steroid, just the antibiotic, so that I could continue to breastfeed. I took my chances, but there was nothing to prove that the steroid would truly help anyway.

It was hard to care for a newborn with BP. I couldn't eat properly or close both my eyes- and I couldn't close both my eyes to sleep. It was heart breaking to not be able to go out comfortably as I would be stared at, and I didn't want friends to really see me that way- also I had trouble speaking, drinking, etc etc. We have very few photos of me and the baby during that time, and the photos are really really bad of me.

My BP lasted two weeks. Thank God. However, I do have the "residual" effects everyone talks about. Most noticably is that I have loss of muscle mass around my affected cheek bone. It makes my face look a little thinner on that side- which I kind of like:-) although compared to the other it's asymetrical, which isn't cool. Also, I have more lines on that side of my face, a deeper smile line, and deeper dimples. I notice that I can't smile and talk for a long time without my face just feeling really tired, so I stop smiling as much, and sometimes look at the person like they're boring me, when they are not!:-(.

Another thing, which I think is kind of cool is that I used to be more animated when I talked to people but now I have more of a tendancy to just look straight at them and not be as expressive. this is really cool when someone is being idiotic or something, because I don't laugh or roll my eyes or anything, I just look straight at them...and to me, inside that's funnier, and I feel like I have more control in that way.

It's been three years since I had this happen to me, and I just recently learned that BP can be caused from too much swelling in labor, as it affects the facial nerves!!!! so if you come down with this during pregnancy or labor, this could be why.

The last thing I'll mention is that I think everyone should do what they can to avoid having a stroke. If you have ever experienced Bell's Palsy you can relate to a Stroke patient, and it's really hard. so take good care of yourself, and the things that you can have some control of anyway:-)

Sweet Pea...

Sunday, November 23, 2008

Little weekend pillows

These are little pillows I made to bring to CAM.
they are made from really heavy textured fabric, the insert is from remnants of my curtains ...I used pastel crayons to make the designs and ironed them to set the color, then I added interfacing so they are nice and adhered and feel sturdy. with neat vintage/or just neat buttons.
stuffed with real wool batting:-) from sheep in Brownstown, PA.

Saturday, November 15, 2008

Whale Wars

I am watching Whale Wars on Animal Planet on HD about the Steve Irwin ship (the crew) sailing the Antarctic waters trying to stop the Japanese whalers. I think Paul Watson, Captain of the Sea Shepherd Conservation Society is startling crazy but so admirable because he's brave and outspoken.
After sitting for HOURS in a room watching people look so disinterested and ambivalent at this last show, it is fun and exciting to watch Paul Watson say, "If you joined this crew, you should be prepared to die for whales! Didn't we interview you?"
He's so passionate- I would hope that whatever my son believes in, that he is that unafraid as he grows older. I hope that he learns that he can share his opinions during his life openly and fearlessly with whatever stirs his passion. Sitting around saying nothing about things that upset you gets you nowhere.
In life I have felt that I was forced to censor my words, but I do have a voice and Paul Watson and his whale crusade might just make me less unafraid to use it!!!!

Friday, November 14, 2008

St. Anne's show

I spent the day at the St. Anne's show 10-7 Sat. and 9-1 Sunday.

Many would come within 5 or 6 feet of my booth and turn around and leave. It was very frustrating that they would not stop to look at my things, or come close enough!

I was treated with more courtesy by the patrons at the Punk Rock Flea Market at the Chamelon Club last spring. There, I got more open, receptive, honest and positive comments regarding my Our Lady's. Considering that St. Anne's is a Catholic based institution....I would have expected things to be different. Even the nuns barely commented on my Our Lady's. I was very dismayed.


Saturday, November 8, 2008

Art on the Farm 2008

We checked out Art on the Farm tonight....oh my. how gorgeous it was.
it's open 12-8 today and tomorrow too....Here I am with My Aunt Debbie, and here's some beautiful art, including that of Will and Maggie Mowery. Just beautiful, this event will become one of my favorites to visit every year from here on out.

Friday, November 7, 2008


So here's the pic of my art in the window of the creperie.
what is funny to note is that the mosaic leaning against the easel is by Carrie Green, my old friend, and someone put our two pieces together.
Carrie and I worked together at RMS for several years. She was the admin my team, and when she changed roles, I asked to be the team admin, and so I moved to her desk etc.
so here we are now in the window tonight of Rachel's.

Thursday, November 6, 2008

Rachel's Cafe and Creperie...tonite!

Check out a piece of my art and many others tonite at this cool show in downtown Lancaster. Enjoy some company while eating a delicious crepe!

and if you are in Ithaca NY...:-) check out my "Our Lady"at the 5 Women on the Border show- opened last night.

Amy...thanks for your advice the last couple days.

Strawberry...your desserts look insane. Wish I could have been at the opening this evening, I hope it was rockin.

xo everyone.

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

what a day...

Mariana, my Romanian au pair left today for Sweden- after two years in Lancaster. She left me her very cool black sweater coat that I will wear proudly all over downtown:-)
and change and excitement is in the air today.
we cast our votes this evening. So proudly.
This is an eloquent man I voted for. The first president I would ever be in awe to meet, one I could listen to for the next four years, and someone I respect.

...later....HE WON!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
What a wonderful thing for the nation and the world.

Saturday, November 1, 2008

Chairs in the car

Tonight Max was playing with his dollhouse (one of those big light wood modern numbers) and he started talking to the little people and then he put them in the big car. (the dollhouse came with a garage and a car).
And then...he took the kitchen chairs out of the house, and loaded them into the car, and the people were chatting and driving along with chairs all stuffed around them.
it was so funny to me. I don't know how many times he has driven with a chair next to him in the back seat, or one in the passenger seat!
My Dad often finds them for me by the side of the road, or at house sales, and we'll drive home from their house with one. and then we'll pack one into the car and deliver it to a show or an event or something.