KpacoTa CnaceT Mup-Beauty Will Save the World

(Quote from Fyodor M. Dostoyevsky's THE IDIOT, 1869)

Sunday, December 4, 2011

Some Gifts We Made for My Mother-in Law's 80th

A very young Janet, under a dome on a vintage floral plate that came from my friend Jenny's things, (given to me after she passed. I am glad I could use it in such a way). This picture is actually so adorable. Just not so clear here. It was taken by my husband's uncle, Frank Navarra, photographer.Archery pillow. Her and hubby in youth. Not the clearist pictures, but you get the idea.

Front of planner.
Inside back of planner.

Sorry I haven't posted in like-forever. I have been working so much. I can not do everything, but I always seem to try to do a lot. What, oh what , pray tell, can I give up???

Be Blessed.:)

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Sorry I Haven't Been Posting Lately...

Hi everyone, it's been hectic working so many jobs, so please forgive me my negligence. I've been playing tennis mom to my son and his tournaments, etc. and catching up with old friends. I was thinking of videotaping the process of trying to get my studio built in the basement. What do you think? I thought that maybe it would make me get to it sooner.

Have been going through my garage and basement, clearing out, and in other areas of the house as well. Reciting to myself "I release the old to make room for the new"events, and people coming into my life in the future. Some days are better than others.

So, my daughter wants to make throws or quilts out of Ken's clothing. His things collaged on one side, and a nice fabric on the other. I also just went through an old Christmas issue of Martha and saw a 2 sided scarf. I thought that they would make nice memory gifts for family members. What do you think? Any more ideas?

I recently made a few gifts for my mother-in-law. She turns 80 in the winter, but you'd never know it. She looks great, still plays tennis usually weekly, and is a gentle, kind individual who inspires others with her class. She always looks great. She is amazing. So, Ken's sisters wanted to have a birthday celebration earlier for her. It was at a beautiful country club on Long Island. It was pouring rain, yet still the view through the windows overlooking the gray skies and waves were beautiful. The food was out of this world great, and they did a mini roast on her. I know that Ken would've liked preparing a speech and presenting it.

Any way, we wanted to make some personal gifts that would have meaning to them. When I get a chance to put them on my computer , I will post the items, as long as the pictures come out alright. She was quite a looker in her youth, and still is today. We have a wealth of fabulous pictures from their teens in camp when they met, (my in-laws that is).

So I printed a picture of them both with bows and arrows, and made a pillow with pretty trim. I think that the colors look good for her place. The girls made a collage on a boxed canvas of them. She was Cleopatra and he was wooing her by her side.

And these adorable pictures of her when she was a little girl were just too cute. I mounted one and put a vintage flower in her hand under a dome on a vintage plate with more vintage flowers at the base. I think that it came out adorably. Alex made a vintage picture card, and I made a 'Ken do' planner with a collaged cover including hubby when he was a young boy. I also made a bookmark from a water colored paper by my girls with a baby picture on the front. She is probably holding an orange , but it looks like a tennis ball in her hand. Tennis is in the family.

So I have been doing artwork here and there, trying to get ready for a big show coming up. Is there ever enough time? And I am always trying to get work together to put into shops that want my things. Add all that to the 6 other jobs that I work, and life can get a little crazy at times. A cold came through the house on top of that, then there was preparation for Hurricane Irene which never really hit here. Just lost the power 2 times. Had to put things into the garage and shed. We do get high winds here in the mountains a lot.

And the husband (also our friend) of my dear friend Jenny who passed away 2 years ago September asked me to go through her things and to take what ever I wanted from her work/studio area. There was a wealth of beautiful items that I will use in my studio, and other lovely items. I can't believe how many things that came from me. We shared our goodies, and now I am getting some back, and loads of other lovelies. She worked for the Archives and did much research on historical pieces. I will have to do my homework on these items. Some things I will keep and others I will sell. And some artwork I will add on to, and they will in essence be collaborations between us. It is a lot, but it brings many happy memories which I am grateful to have had. I went through everything with her beautiful daughter, Emma. Emma will be helping me at Boonsborough Days, and I will be thankful for her help.

So, what do you think about posting the progress of the studio in videos? And what other ideas might you have for making memory pieces from Ken's clothing? Because he was a tennis professional, he had many t-shirts and sweeatshirts. We have been going through his things at a snail's pace so far. It is especially difficult for my children . They do not want me to go through things without them, which I would never do anyway. And they do not want to do it much at all yet. But, I think that it is time to start a little here and there. It will be cathartic. And especially, the act of making things with TLC to gift to family and friends.

Thursday, June 9, 2011


"It is within my power either to serve God or not to serve him. Serving him, I add to my own good and the good of the whole world. Not serving him, I forfeit my own good and deprive the world of that good, which was in my power to create."

Lev Tolstoy

Monday, June 6, 2011

One Year, a New Intensive Job, & Goodbye Mr." T"

So 25 May saw the one year anniversary of hubby's passing, and the 24th saw a new intensive adjunct position teaching 1 year's worth of Russian in 18 days at the university level. Not exactly the easiest thing. To complicate matters the book was not chosen by me and it is not exactly conducive to teaching the language intensively. The complementing audio program is confusing and compounds my work and the students' work.

I do enjoy teaching the class which is 10min! from my home. It is 4 days a week, 4 hours a day. The students are great, and I give them on-line youtube videos and music to watch and listen to to break up the intensity of the daily program.

I pray that the students and I do wonderful jobs, and that this leads to further work. They did not have the language and petitioned for the classes! Without my honey to cheer me on it can be a bit daunting, but if what we went through has taught me one thing, it is to plow through even a difficult situation. I hope and pray that it pays off in the end in more ways than one.

There are times that I want to cry, missing him so, and I do let the tears come. Working so many jobs is not exactly the easiest thing, but I do what I have to do. What more can anyone ask?

My very close friend's father just passed away. He was 92! We have been friends since I was 3 1/2 years old, when I moved into my new house on Long Island. I was sitting on the right side of the car when my father was about to turn right onto our new block in June, so many years ago.

There sat Jean on her big, antique, red tricycle looking at us not far from the car that was stopped at the stop sign. She said very assuredly, "I know her". Jean is 1 year older than I , and 1 year younger than my sister. If she was my best friend, we would run away from my sister, and if she was my sister's best friend, they would run away from me. Jean is very special to our family, and even my in laws loved and love her.

Her dad loved baseball and so Jean was a good little ball player, and would always be one of the team captains on our block. Growing up I practically lived at her house and so I will miss Mr. "T". I always called her Mom, Mom "T", once we were teenagers, and her dad Mr. "T". In his youth he was a striking man in a sailor suit, always kind to me, and he called me Lidja.

I hope that you are all doing well, my dear blogging friends.

Memory Eternal, my honey!
Memory Eternal, Mr. "T" !


Sunday, May 15, 2011

Winning Counties!!!!!..3-6,6-0,6-3

My son won Counties yesterday!!!! He plays #1 singles for his HS Tennis team. He has since he was a freshman. He's now a sophmore.

The boy he played took 2 matches off him.With the 2nd match they had split sets , were 4-all, (meaning they were tied -for you non-tennis bloggers), and Serge had to retire due to a horribly cramping hand, the same hand that cramped that had lost him the 1st match with this opponent.

A match or 2 before that one, he won a thrilling 3 setter w/another school, but had fallen on his arm, injuring it. That's when he then played this opponent, losing w/his cramped hand from the injury. Then the 2nd time he played him it cramped so badly that he couldn't hold his racket, and had to retire. He felt so badly.

The opponent's coach kept cheering my son's faults/errors. This is a big NO-NO in tennis etiquette. She was loud and constant. I had complained to the coaches at the 1st match. Then at the 2nd match, Serge had had enough and complained to a teammate of the opponent who was doing the same thing at that match. The coach was right there and did the same cheering along with her student! So the coach 'corrected' her student, with a faulter in her words. "Yeah, that's not really the, uh, right thing to do, uh..."

So at this final match for the counties in boys singles, the coach was not too voiced thank goodness. And guess who the boy's coach was? HIS MOTHER!!!! So unprofessional. My son grew up with tennis, and is very self contained on the tennis court, unlike other players who show a great deal of frustration, like McEnroe used to do. That's why Mac got fined all the time.

So when Serge won, it was a very sweet victory. He dedicated it to his Dad, who passed away last year. His dad, my hubby, was a tennis pro his whole adult life. He was not a bad player himself, having been ranked internationally once, and ranked nationally, #1 in his age bracket in the Mid-Atlantic in the past ,.....He's surely smiling down from heaven.

It was really great to have Ken's good friend, Jeff , there supporting Serge. Jeff is the Tennis Director at the club where hubby taught. Hubby was Director of Junior Tennis. The program run at the club is a superb one in the area.

Next week Regionals!

Friday, May 6, 2011

Greenfest in the Park

Greenfest show in the Park ,and more...

"The right side of the brain is the more creative part and therefore shows us things we may not see when we try to look at things logically."

"When we laugh through our tears , we are being given a powerful gift."

"Proverbs 17:22 tells us "A Merry heart doeth good like medicine."

"If you had chickens you wouldn't go around picking up their droppings, you would pick up the eggs -Right?"
(The Healing Power of Humor, by Allen Klein)

My wonderful friend Patty, who I've known since the mid nineties, and who I met through an article that I wrote in DOLL WORLD Magazine on the Russian-American connection with dolls, also lost her husband last year.

She just sent me 2 "book reports" totaling 18 pages of humor , positive reinforcement thoughts, and words of inspiration that she wrote from 2 books that she recently read.

I am glad that you were born, my dear friend Patricia. Her husband called her Patricia, friends call her Pat or Patti, and very good friends call her Patty with a "y". I remember the day that she wrote me and told me I could call her Patty with a "y". She makes me laugh every time I talk with her! She called me last week and left a message,"Do you know where your friend is? Call me!"

I'm from NY and she's from Staten Island. She contacted me when she read that article that I wrote. I was pregnant with my youngest who is now 15. We have been friends ever since. We had a doll club with some other women. We felted wool in my driveway with my car. We made totally different dolls, but had the same love of creating.

She now has gone back to painting watercolors, and has been getting into collage with the painting. Since I have known her, her house has always been gorgeous, with flowers asplash inside and out. She is highly focused and prolific , no matter what she does. She cannot stop creating. She joins guilds, gets her paintings into hospitals and galleries, she teaches, and she also used to teach belly dancing years ago when raising her 2 boys. She's grandmother to gorgeous and smart grandchildren, and is one of the most giving and 'generous of soul' individuals that I know. She has a love for happiness in her heart that goes beyond the average person.

The 2 things that stand out to me more than anything are her flowers and her humor. She brings flowers with her wherever she goes, whether it be in a garden bed that surrounds the entire house, her paintings,(she even painted my family in flowers when Ken died), the fresh flowers upon her dining room table, or the flowers in her heart that burst open with laughter, even in the darkest hours. And of the latter, she is no novice.

So, I celebrate my dear friend Patty with a "y", and I am ever so blessed to call her my friend. I am so thankful that she was born, as she never lets me forget that about me. Ever.

Love youPatty. xoxoxo


PS- The pictures are random and recent: Poppy flower in our garden bed, Alex trying to take a picture with the ever elusive Serge on Easter morning, a Visual Thinking art assignment from a classmate of my daughter's at her university, made out of Saran wrap. It looks to be life size in total-this is just a portion of the piece), an Easter chick, and my nephew Jason's funny Easter poses,(he being a big prankster, another one who can't stop making people laugh).

Friday, April 22, 2011

Sunday, April 17, 2011

Palm Sunday & Pussy Willows, Poetry, my Anniversary, & the Day I was Born

"He was my North, my South, My East, My West, My working week and my Sunday Rest"

A.H. Auden (from the book-About Grief)

"Poets touch things that are difficult to touch, things like the indignities of grief, and in so doing, reteach them their loveliness ." (from -About Grief,by Ron Marasco & Brian Shriff)

Poignant words do not always attest to the facts of truth. And search for truth we must.
The everyday, the simple, ordinary moments. The space between the lines.
The silence between the notes.
For it is in these simple, ordinary moments that we create the truth in our lives.
And this truth is based upon the sacred details, that once gone, make up a life.
What is held dear, this is what translates from one person to another.
From one generation to the next.
And then the poignant moments appear, as if in an instant to clarify our emotions and values
that we hold dear.
Some people never have these moments, and isn't that a shame?
Why cannot we learn to cherish the ordinary, to be satisfied with taking out the trash,
when we share chores with family, when we share roles in life at work or amongst friends?
For after all, life is in the living, and dieing is in the details of life remembered.

Are we not all an experiment? Life to each is an experiment.
What propels someone to cherish the ordinary if their life has been full of chaos, disarray, anger, lack of love?

Please tell me that you can help another in time, in life, or perhaps with just a smile
or a word to show that one person at that exact time that there is good in the world.
Seek and ye shall find. Ask, and you shall receive.
Search for truth, no matter what in all you do,
and even the simplest among us can change the world.

I'd rather go down trying, then living without the hope of any real truth.
The world would not make sense if there was no God.
And even the least among us can find hope, faith, God in the smallest details of the day.

Would that I could elicit a wealth of care that transcends generations and cultures.
For maybe, I have something to say that you want to hear.

When the student is ready, the teacher will appear.
I am the student, and the teacher is life.
I am the student and the teacher is God.

3/23/ll Lydia

Happy Palm Sunday. I was born on Palm Sunday. And today is my anniversary. It would have been 28 years. And did you know that in Russia, they didn't have palms, so they received pussy willows on Palm Sunday? Today my aunt and uncle brought in fresh pussy willows from their yard for all the church. What a treat. I love pussy willows. And, did you know that there is a black pussy willow? I just found that out this year at a flower and garden show in March.

Blessings to all.

Thursday, April 14, 2011

Happy Birthday, Me!

I woke up crying that my honey was gone. Then I saw my son's beautiful homemade card, where he cut out individual candles to match my years. It was a quiet day. Took off to get tested for Strep, because it's in the family this weekend. Cleaned the stack of dishes, talked to my brother who lives abroad on the other side of the world for over an hour or more, vacuumed most of the downstairs, a friend came over for a little visit, and at night had a wonderful dinner made by my oldest, followed by a yummy cake from the new bakery in town, and opened presents. They were very nice. Then I received text singing from a handful of my nieces and nephews, etc...other phone calls from my sister & oldest brother.

Kept missing my sister, but heard her beautiful voice singing "Happy Birthday" to me on the phone.


xo Lydia

Saturday, March 5, 2011

Good News...

...Somehow, while checking messages at work on my cell phone, I heard my sister's message which had been deleted, since my counter went to 0. So how did it come back on along with Ken's 2 messages?

Maybe an angel had something to do with it. It was gone, and then it was there.

Have a good night.

Thursday, March 3, 2011

Deleted Voice Mails

I'm Miserable. My 2 saved messages from Ken on my voice mail are no more. Wanting to delete one that I just got, I pressed clear, and it cleared all. Being tired, I pressed it before I could save it.

I actually had them saved recently to a CD from an outside source through my cell phone company. But, I liked to listen to his soothing voice at times when I got another voice mail in. So, I will try to record them back onto the phone from the CD while playing it in my computer. Of course, the quality may suffer.

Thank God I actually saved his voice messages to the CD.

It actually took immediate tears and some foot stomping- all of about 1 minute, before I called Verizon to see if I could retrieve them. But, no such luck. In the future, just press 1 before hanging up and it can be saved.

Such is life. Goodnite.

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Felt Head B&W Kitty

Sorry- picture taken w/my cell phone. Justa little guy I made during a snow storm last month. Just need a couple of finishing touches. Really much cuter than the picture portrays. My first little needle felted guy.Dinner's ready. 'Gotta' run.

Monday, February 28, 2011

My daughter for Relay for Life

As many of you know, my husband passed away last year. He had Stage IV Lung cancer. My oldest, Alex, has been doing Relay for a while. Please check out her pages and pass along to anyone you care. Thank you so much for your time .



My Reason to Relay

June 2011 will be my sixth Relay for Life! I relay for my father, who passed away in May 2010 from lung cancer, my friend Michael who was only 19 years old when he passed away in 2005 from brain cancer, and everyone else who has been affected by this terrible disease.

Please make a donation to the American Cancer Society to help us all live in a world with less cancer. Everyone has been affected in some way, whether you: have or had it, were a caregiver, knew someone with it, or even had a friend who knew someone with it. Your donation no matter how small can help so many people! Won't you please donate today?!


- Alex

If you are unable to view the message below, click here to view

This year, over 1.4 million Americans will hear the words ‘You have cancer’. I know too many people who are touched by cancer, and that is why I have joined the American Cancer Society on a mission to save lives and create a world with more birthdays by participating in the Relay For Life in my community.

At Relay For Life we celebrate loved ones who have won their battle against cancer, remember those who are no longer with us, and fight back against this disease that touches so many. I am determined to make a difference, and I hope you will join me. I will be walking on Saturday, June 11, 2011 at Sherwood High School in Olney, Maryland.

Please, support me in my efforts by using the link below to visit my personal web page and make a donation. Every dollar raised brings us one dollar closer to a cure, and to a time when the number of people who have to hear the words “you have cancer” is zero.

Thank you so much for your support. Together, we ARE saving lives and creating a world with more birthdays!

Thank you for your donation, no matter how small!

- Alex

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Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Coming out 0f the Winter doldrums... I think that I am getting back to life a little. Have been inspired and making some things. No pictures for now.

Went to celebrate my grandmother's baby sister's 97th birthday last Saturday. When I put some pictures on the computer I will share. How many 97 year olds can have a bookshelf fall on them, break their tailbone in 3 places (in Oct.) , and be healed totally by February? But, she lost a bit of weight. Still looks great! Could pass for someone in her late 70's. She can talk politics and social issues with you, keeps up on things like Cairo, is into homeopathy, and can stick her tongue out like a 16 year old for pictures. She's amazing.

Sadly, my fabulous grandmother, (I was truly blessed with the best and always knew it), passed away at 59 when I was in 3rd grade. My 97 yr. old aunt has buried all three of her children and her husband. That is so very tough. But, she is an inspiration to us all and always keeps her spirits up. I easily have 4 hour telephone conversations with her. She is so much fun with whom to have a conversation.In fact, up until about 8-10 years ago, four generations would go antiquing, and guess who would drive?

The reason that I have not been blogging much is that my work schedule has been hectic, and everyday life takes so much of the time that is left. Have been feeling a bit frazzled. Hoping to get some things off my list now, and feel better about things. Lots going on since the fall, much on the shoulders. Trying to clear my head.

Of course it is hard on days like Valentine's Day and such. But, I think in general that this year has been tougher for me- maybe because it was 'last year' that we lost him.

Well, I recently took to my wool and needle felted for the first time. I am very pleased with the results. Have been working on some other wool pieces as well. Had a woolen Christmas stocking that I cut up with which I made some heads. A dog's head, a cat's head and a snake's face. They are very folk art like. The snakes face,(not scary), will turn into a little purse. The cat and dog will either be purses or dolls. Not sure which to do yet. Also have some paper mache birds in the works.

I am feeling frazzled as I have so many things to do, and when I get started, something comes to interrupt the process. I feel sometimes that not much gets done, even though I do far more than many others. Would love to start on my basement studio, but then have other necessary projects like redoing my filing system, and the purging of old papers. I have no problems organizing and purging, I just have so much of it to do. Time, time, time.

Our world is surely so crazy, when retired relatives are frazzled from life. The answer is to do less, but getting rid of things that one likes to do to stay de-frazzled sometimes seems to be the only answer to the time crunch.

My Mom's rose bush was transplanted when we sold our old family home. It gives me roses in winter. I feel that it is my Mom watching over me, sending me her love and support from heaven above when it does. And it usually comes at a point when I need the extra lift.Although there is no rose on the bush now, the above rose picture is from this rose bush which has been transplanted twice, and still gives us roses.

Just read a quote that I like, something to the effect of :
"Don't give the devil a ride. He will insist upon driving."

I take it to mean to not give in to negative thoughts- and , I guess to things in general that one may later regret doing.

Maybe Puxatawney Phil was right, and spring will be with us soon. We have been having some blue skies and temps. in the 40's and nearing 50 recently. Have a great day.

xo Lydia

Saturday, February 5, 2011

31 Years ago today, My Dad Died...1 Year ago today, Ken came home for Hospice

31 years ago today at 5:45 am I received a phone call. I thought that it was a subbing call, but then I looked at the clock and saw how early it was. That wasn't good. My super, well loved father passed away at 52 from fibrosis of the lungs, due to too much radiation treatment for his Hodgkin's Disease.

The radiologist was an awful man. My father was a civil servant, with average pay for the day. The doctor told him,"You took a mortgage out for your home, you took a loan out for your car, I'm not waiting for Blue Cross-Blue Shield, take a loan out to pay me."

I loved my father to the ends of the earth. He made us feel as if all four of us were his favorite. I always figured that if I was 1/2 as good a parent as my Dad was, that my kids would turn out all right. *

So it did not slip my mind in the least when we found out that Ken would come home for Hospice a year ago today. It compounded the memory date, emblazoned it in my heart and soul forever.

Of course, we were hoping to heal Ken. And, after all, while home in Hospice, he got rid of his hematuria, 2 colds, and started to gain weight/eat & drink more, ever so slowly. But then he made a drastic turn for the worst, his body temperature plummeted to 88 degrees, and then the following day, his final day here on earth with us in May, to 87 degrees. He was 55.

My sister said that he had 1 foot in heaven , and three here on earth. That so described Ken. He did not want to leave. But, alas, it was not his decision to make , but it was the decision of the man upstairs.

West Side Tennis Club.

Our beautiful children at their cousin's wedding last September.
* I feel awful, but I do not have any photos of my Dad on the computer. So many to scan. He was the best Dad anyone could've had. No lie.

Saturday, January 1, 2011

S Novim Godom! Happy New Year!

Last photo of hubby taken a day before his massive stroke last year at his Mom's. Thanksgiving 2009. Vomiting and Thanksgiving don't quite go together. He put on this smile for us, even though what he was going through was lousy, he still gave us this smile.
My three beautiful children at my niece's wedding last year. Even though they have been through so much, their youth carries them onward. What is the quote? "Youth is a gift of nature. Age is a work of art." Forgot who said it. So I am a work of art? Wish I thought so! ...hahaha
A little china head doll with painted body that I made about 1 1/2 years ago. Already sold, but I thought I would post it. Not sure if I posted her picture before or not.
Here's her sister. They went to the same home. Her crown and mask are made out of painted tar paper. It is fairly sturdy and paints up well.
Yesterday we went to the facility where hubby worked. He ran the junior tennis program there for years, and the day after Christmas starts the largest junior tournament in our state. When Ken passed away, they renamed it in his name. Nice, huh?

So they asked me to come in to hand out awards, shake hands, and take photos with the winners. My oldest, who works there, did the morning photos I believe, and my middle daughter was working, so my son handed out the finalists' awards, and I the winners' .

It was nice because the winner of the boys 18s was one of Ken's long time students. And he had to beat out a lot of stiff competition to get there. And the finalist of the boys 16's is the son of Ken's doubles partner.

It was nice seeing friendly faces. One of them was a young lady who Ken coached for years who 'made good' in the tennis world. She's graduating college soon. Seeing her , I told her how much Ken enjoyed coaching her. She was affected, and I started to cry, just a little. I had to NOT look at all his photos at the club, to retain my composure.

After that nice afternoon, my son and I had dinner, then a quiet evening at home.My oldest was with her boyfriend, and celebrations leading up to a wedding today. My middle daughter went with a good friend to a Drama teacher's party for past and present students, then they came home to play guitar and make brownies. And I put a mini fooseball table together that I had gotten as a gift. The regular table is in the basement, but my oldest thought it would make a great gift to have a little table upstairs.

You see, in college, I 'minored' in fooseball. I hung out with all the international students, who were very good at the fooseball table, and learned a thing or two. Of course, I am out of practice a bit. My friend Jean and I would put our quarter up to play the winners. The guys would size us up and think they could beat us because we were a couple of girls. Then we'd whip their buns, and perplex the heck out of them. And to think that the first time I played the game in Syracuse, while visiting Jean, that I played so very badly. But, I was smitten by the game and got so good that by the time I visited her next, I was actually a decent partner. And so began my career in University Fooseball....hahaha

It was hard last night at midnite, not having my Ken to kiss, not even in the hospital. It was also hard because now I have to say that I lost my husband 'last year'. And remembering our quiet night last (2009) New Year's Eve in the Rehab hospital, and the following day when we spent 11 1/2 hours in the ER of the hospital attached to the Rehab . Hospital, all the while taking care of my husband's hematuria, and the subsequent lack of sleep for 2 days+, and the horrible stay at that hospital for 6 days, and just wanting to take hubby home because they were just atrocious there, and him going back to the Rehab, Hospital, but things had changed and he started to go down hill---well, those are tough memories to hold for all of us.

But, you know? God says to have hope 'til the end. And that's what I did with Ken, and that's what I do now. Hope that things will get better for us all, and knowing that he is at peace, and no longer in mental, (and physical) suffering. For it was the mental suffering which was the hardest for my poor hubby.

So if you smoke, please heed this warning. I don't want to get graphic, but it was no cake walk to go through what my hubby went through. Don't risk what he went through. You will be so very thankful that you gave it up. I did, so many years ago, when I became pregnant with my first, and I am so thankful that I did. I've spoken of dolls/artwork, kids , a hubby that left us, smoking, and fooseball in college. Now I have a kitty on my lap who needs some attention:)

Have a Blessed New Year.

xo Lydia