It’s Been a Journey

I know don’t usually share family-related posts, but today I’d like to share something that recently happened in my family. It’s a big reason why I haven’t been blogging for while.

First of all, I’d like to say that this has been a hard post to write. It has been a difficult journey to go through, but I feel like we’re beginning to see the light at the end of the tunnel and I’m ready to share.

Over the past few months our world has been turned upside down. You see, on October 28th my dad had a stroke. The doctors said it was technically a minor stroke, but it was still a stroke and it really affected him. We were all in shock. A few weeks prior to this stroke, we found out that he’d had a very minor one several years ago (minor enough that we were not even aware of it), but other than that he was doing really well with his health. The morning of October 28th, he had fallen at home and my mom decided to take him to their local hospital. After they determined that it had been a stroke, they decided to move him to another hospital that was more equipped for stroke victims. Thankfully, the second hospital is close to where Ricky and I live. That gave us the opportunity to see him every day and my mom was able to get some rest at our house when she wasn’t staying with my dad. He had some ups and downs during this time. He was in the hospital, then they moved to rehab, then he had to go back to the hospital, and then back to rehab. It was difficult to see him go through that, but my dad is a strong man and has been determined from the beginning to get back on his feet. Even his physical therapists have been amazed at how well he has done. And that determination paid off, because a few weeks before Christmas he was finally able to go home!

Since he has been home, he has continued to go through therapy and is continuing to get stronger every day. Even though I am not able to see him every day like I could while he was here, it is encouraging to see how he has improved each time I visit. Although this has been very difficult for all of us (my mom (especially my mom), my sisters, their husbands, and my nephews), we have all pulled together and been there for each other through every up and down. We have really appreciated the prayers, support, and encouragement from friends and family. It’s been amazing to see the love and support they have shared with my dad and our family. To those of you who have offered a kind word or a helping hand, thank you. We couldn’t do this without you. Even though he is home now, we know this journey is far from over. We’re just continuing to take it one day at a time and praying for a complete healing.

Lavishly Decorating

I’m so excited to share my new decorating adventure with you guys. A few weeks ago, our pastor’s wife/women’s ministry leader approached me about joining the women’s ministry team to head up the decorating. Of course my response was to jump up and down shouting YES!!! saying I’d love too. I was thrilled, overjoyed, excited….nervous. Can I really do this?!?!? Ricky was excited for me, which helped boost my confidence a little. But after our first ministry team meeting I felt MUCH better, knowing the other members of the team were there for support and ideas.

We had our first event a few weeks ago and it was amazing! We had 121 women there, which was the most they ever had and I was a part of it! 

For that event, I needed to decorate a welcome table and a stage, both of which can be a challenge in their own way, but I was especially overwhelmed by the stage. After some Pinterest searching (Side note: Pinterest doesn’t have much when it comes to stage decoration, not that I could find anyway…) and some ideas from ladies, we decided to keep the stage simple and elegant by placing candles everywhere.  Let me say: Best. Idea. Ever! It was gorgeous!

 Lavish Stage Candle light (wide)

Lavish Stage Candle Light (close up)

The welcome table was covered with a brown table cloth. I made a welcome banner to drape across the front, placed some flowers in a vase, and set two flameless candles on either side.

Lavish Welcome Table

(Sorry, the banner got a little washed out)

To create the welcome sign, I cut scrapbook paper into triangles, placed letters on the front to spell “welcome”, used a hole punch to place holes in the corners of the triangles, and threaded yarn through the holes. I already had everything on hand so this entire craft was free! Actually, the only thing we bought for the night was the flowers. We used what we had and borrowed items. Yay! 

Even though I only played a small part in it, I’m so happy that I could be part of what God is doing through our women’s ministry and thankful I am able to use this gift of decoration in this way.