Friday, September 30, 2005

Zack's doing GREAT

Zack is such an amazing little guy. We got to Johns Hopkins at 6:30am -- he didn't sleep at all on the way there because he knew something was up. Didn't fuss, just was curious as to where we were going. I had worried about how we were going to entertain a tired, hungry, cranky 2-year-old, but JH knows how to do things right -- they had a kid's waiting room that really made Zack happy.

Then, when they called us into the triage room, where they hook up everyone to their IVs and you basically just wait for surgery, JH again knew what they were doing. There were about 10 other people there for surgery, and the nurses did all of them before they even thought about doing a thing to Zack. And again, they had tons of toys and books that kept Zack entertained. Couldn't have asked for better. When the nurses came to start working with him, they told us that they wouldn't even start an IV until Zack was under the general anesthetic -- HUGE relief on my part.

The anesthesiologist (who was incredibly funny and very nice) gave Zack "baby Valium" and in about five minutes, Zack was a drunken sailor, listing to the left, toppling over from a sitting position, and giggling. We got a look at what he'll look like on a college campus one day, I'm afraid! They allowed me to suit up, and I got to carry him into the operating room. They put a mask on him to give him the gas, and he didn't even fight it. Kissed his little cheek and then it was out to wait.

The surgery is really minor -- in fact, many dentists do it under a local in their office, but with Zack being rather "non-cooperative", as the docs put it, this was the better option. They clipped the frenulum under his tongue, as well as the upper one, where the lip meets the upper gums, and in about five minutes they came out to get us to go to the recovery room.

Pediatrics has its own section of recovery. Zack was snoozing away, so Rick and I just sat to wait for him to wake up on his own. They warned us that most babies and little children wake up agitated, and they weren't kidding. He was NOT happy about the IV being in his arm, and he was making this keening noise like a little wild animal in fear that just broke my heart. And he is STRONG -- he was super hard to hold onto, and he kept trying to crawl up on us and over the bed to get away. They wanted him to drink something before they let him go, but after trying to get him calmed down by putting one of his favorite videos on and no dice, they decided to let him go. Once the IV came out, and Rick remembered he had a pacifier in his pocket, all was well. We think that because his tongue was still numb from the local they gave him, he didn't think it worked, so giving him his paci (which he only has at night, and I know, he shouldn't have it) comforted him.

About 45 minutes down the road we stopped at a Barnes and Noble so I could get Rick and I coffee (getting up at 3am is normal for Rick, but NOT for me) and I got Zack a soft pretzel, which he loves, and proceeded to devour. GREAT news there. Once we got home, we ALL took long naps, and after he woke up, it was like nothing had even happened... he was his regular self. He even went to preschool the following day and had a great time.

SO relieved. Now we do speech therapy twice a week, and occupational therapy once a week.

As a tension reliever for the long week, Rick took Zack after lunch today and I drove to Baltimore to meet a friend for the Intergem Gem and Jewelry show. Bought WAY more than I intended to but got some killer deals -- awesome gemstone pendants, lots of pearls, and some really terrific gemstones in cuts I've never seen anywhere else. So hopefully this weekend I can make up some new things that I can put on the web site -- I know it's been a while!

Monday, September 26, 2005

OK, as promised, photos of the Occoquan show! Here's the booth - people are starting to find me now by knowing I'm the one with the purple curtains!

We did the set up on Friday at 7pm -- we got to the area plenty early, so we stopped at one of my favorite stores, Marshalls, and I found the metal stand on the left. The cool thing about it is the sides fold in so it goes flat -- perfect for the booth! I'm not sure how we did shows before I bought the van.

Zack has his frenulectomy tomorrow, so I have to get up at 3:30am to get ready and get out the door to get to Johns Hopkins Medical by 5:45. Took a nap earlier since I'm a night owl and have to get my sleep where I can. I appreciate all the thoughs and kind words you've all given.

More later.

Sunday, September 25, 2005

Just got back from Occoquan, VA show

We just walked in the door about ten minutes ago from my first time ever at the Occoquan, VA Craft Show. GREAT show! I met my financial goal the first day, so very pleased! I had a great spot (especially considering it was my first time there) and I met such awesome people. I had the distinct pleasure of having a friend work Saturday with me (WHAT a tremendous help) and all of the vendors around me were super friendly -- probably the best crowd of folks I've met yet. Weather was incredible -- not hot, very pleasant. Overall, a great experience. I'll have photos tomorrow!

Wednesday, September 21, 2005

Our Day Out With Thomas

Here are some photos from our Day Out With Thomas!

We all had SO much fun. Strasburg is in Amish country so Zack saw lots of horses and buggies, cows, things like that. We stayed in a hotel that was a replica of a steamship -- he thought that was pretty cool.

While we waited for our turn to ride on Thomas, we went around to a bunch of the tents they had set up. This particular tent had all sorts of train tables set up, including this electric set. Zack has a small oval electric set in our bedroom and then a wooden train table in the living room -- but he'd never seen anything like this huge electric set up!

More train tables to try out....

So now it's our turn to ride on Thomas! Zack was VERY excited about that. He was SO good, didn't complain about sitting still for ten minutes before we left, and was VERY into the whole thing. So much so that we were glad that we had bought extra tickets -- the Thomas ride is only about ten minutes, but we asked him if he wanted to go on a longer ride, and he said "OK!" very emphatically, so off we go on a 45 minute ride through the country.

Check out Mr. Cool -- on the way back, we stopped at a picnic area and the conductor let about 30 Amish kids hitch a ride. Two little girls sat with us, and Zack started alternated playing shy and flirting.

He still hadn't had his fill of train rides, as you can

Unfortunately, my photos of the Toy Train Museum didn't turn out well, but WHAT a cool place. They had five different tracks running with these amazing trains, all different gauges, the really neat, detailed, expensive stuff. We could have spent ages in there.

All in all, a fabulous trip.

Saturday, September 17, 2005

off to Strasburg tomorrow

Went to check out my booth spot in Occoquan, VA, yesterday, and met up with my friend who will be helping me out. The space is near the museum, and much more level than we had expected. Really looking forward to it, but hope it's not as HOT as it was yesterday!

I played around a little with my camera settings last night and while I'm still convinced I need a new camera with a better zoom focus capability, here are some pictures of jewelry that I'm taking to the Occoquan show this coming weekend....

Thursday, September 15, 2005

lots of jewelry in the works

I have a big show, a new one for me, next weekend (September 24-25, Occoquan, VA) and I have two huge bowls of new stuff done. I'll be scanning it quickly before the show, and that way I can post things afterwards much more quickly. I always like to keep photos of what I've made for posterity -- recently had to transfer it all to cd so I could free up room on the computer -- and it's interesting to see the transitions I've made over the past two years.

But I did find time to post one new necklace, a simple turquoise and Hill Tribe Silver flower one. It's under What's New. First one in the necklaces section.

Wednesday, September 14, 2005

The first week of preschool

Well, I survived it! Zack totally loves it, didn't cry at all -- I, on the other hand, well, that's another story entirely!

Thought I'd share some photos.

Here we are sitting on the kitchen counter, getting ready to head out the door for the first day......

At preschool, heading right for the puzzles.....

Wearing my name tag on my back because I refused to let Ms. Shannon put it on my front.....

Posing for Mommy before she heads out the door.....

And because our new Thomas the Tank Engine backpack didn't arrive until the night of the first day of preschool, Zack had to try it out before bedtime, in his pajamas. He was ready to go -- even brought me his shoes!

Sunday, September 11, 2005

Zack start's preschool tomorrow

I can't believe my baby is going to pre-school tomorrow! No way... isn't he only 2 weeks old instead of nearly 3?

Did a fair amount of custom work this weekend -- here are some of the pictures. I still need to get a new camera so that white and pink one? Not the best rendition.

And I spent almost all of this evening getting my 2006 show schedule in order -- collecting applications, getting the ones that are available out, etc. Trying to branch out geographically even more than this year -- more shows in New Jersey, and additional locations in Virginia and Maryland. Wish me luck! Won't know for quite some months now -- it's like applying to college with all the forms and fees and crossed fingers!

Wednesday, September 07, 2005

Jury slides are in

Today my friend Shannon and I went (with the Zack-man, of course!) to Arundel Mills. We were going to meet a friend/colleague/customer of mine, too, but yesterday she got exposed in a major way to chicken pox and I haven't had it, and Zack hasn't had it, so she stayed home. Chicken pox -- yikes. I've had the vaccine but still, not a good thing to be around, especially with Zack starting preschool on Monday!

On the way home (after getting NOTHING that was on my list and a bunch of things that WEREN'T) we stopped in Annapolis to drop off boxes of Zack's clothes and toys for the Katrina Relief drive. An organization has two big trucks there taking all kinds of things -- I saw huge bags of dogfood, suitcases, toys, dishes -- you name it. Shannon and I are going to go through our houses again and see what else we can scare up.

On a business note, got my jury slides back today -- to get into many of the art/craft shows that I do, potential exhibitors have to send in slides of their work to be seen by a "jury". The jewelry category is always one with LOTS of applicants, so I usually apply to twice as many shows as I actually want to get in to. I got some new slides taken for this coming year's juries and posted them here...

I particularly like the Bali silver one -- it's an idea that I've had for a while but it took me a while to collect enough of the BIG silver beads to make it work.

Off to bed -- reading a new book called A Question of Attraction -- the main character has a wry, self-depricating sense of humor that makes me laugh out loud, which is great for entertainment but not so good when I wake up my sleeping husband!

Sunday, September 04, 2005

Zack's surgery scheduled

Zack's surgery to release the tension on his tongue is set for September 27th. We have to be at Johns Hopkins at 6am, which means we leave the house at 4:30am. I hope Zack will fall back asleep in the car but that's doubtful. He can't eat or drink, either, and I'm just hoping he'll do ok. The worst part of it will be when they have to start an IV -- the times when they've had to draw blood from him in the past, I couldn't stay in the room -- Rick had to take over. I just cry and cry and that's upsetting to Zack when he's already a mess. I'm so fortunate that Rick is such a hands-on Daddy, going to every single doctor's appointment and making things more soothing for the Zack-man.

The auction for Hurricane Katrina relief is going nicely. My heart keeps breaking when I hear things on the news. Just heard that a New Orleans police officer committed suicide when he found his wife's body. I have no idea how these poor people are coping. Today when we were out and about, we saw a drop-off point for clothes, so I'm going to take these huge bags of Zack's old baby clothes there. They've been sitting in the bottom of his closet for ages waiting for me to put them on Ebay, but this makes MUCH more sense.

We'll be rounding up toys, too. I remember that there was a flood back when I was little, maybe 5 years old, and we went to go see how our friend Sarah and her family had fared. I remember being so upset because Brian, their son, had lost all his toys. As a five year old, that was just a horrible thought. All of those little kids, they're going to need something to hold onto and distract them for just a few minutes, if that's even possible.

Found an excellent site for those of us with extra rooms -- check it out and pass it on.

Friday, September 02, 2005


I just wrote a couple of hours ago but I just spent some time online looking at photos of the devastation in New Orleans and it hit me hard when I realized I'd actually been inside the convention center, walked down those streets, been inside the Riverwalk. It's always that much more poignant when you see photos of places you know and recognize. I spent a week in New Orleans for a Microsoft convention back in the days when I had a "day" job and it just struck me as I looked that I had BEEN there. And now look at it.

I feel so helpless. I want to drive down, load up my car with people, bring them back here. Hand out food, water, books, hugs. Instead I'm here feeling guilty for being as blessed as I am.

Rick's birthday is today and tonight we went out to dinner and we talked at length about the plight of these people. I can't complain about high gas prices -- I have a car to drive and somewhere to drive it to. I'm just overwhelmed with all of this and don't even know how to think about it all. It certainly puts life into perspective.

Auction for Hurricane Katrina Relief

I had to post it twice, as Ebay apparently changed its charity auction rules, but my auction for Hurricane Katrina Relief is up.

The auction is for a dichroic glass heart necklace and 100% of the proceeds will be going to the Red Cross. You can rest assured that 100% is INDEED going to the Red Cross, as Ebay has set things up to keep unscrupulous people from making money off the tragedy of others. If you bid on other auctions, look for the ribbon emblem Ebay has implemented so you know that it's on the up and up.

OR you can go directly to, or take a look at -- they have a list of charities there.

God bless, and pray for those affected.