making a choice in retrospect…

In the past week I’ve had two challenging interviews. One with the Board of Nursing and one with my county’s Fetal/Infant Mortality Review Board.

It’s not hard because I can’t talk about Miranda. I love talking about my daughter. Unfortunately it often seems there is more of the “bad” to talk about than the “good”. I don’t shy away from opportunities to talk about her or tell about her short life, especially when someone is interested in more than the medical side of it, because the stories tied to Miranda that declare God’s glory are amazingly abundant.

It’s hard because I sit here with nearly six months worth of hindsight and countless amounts of information that wasn’t readily available when I needed it most.

At nearly six months after her birth the rawness of the emotions has dulled quite a bit and the way I am able to process things now is quite different.

It doesn’t mean I’m over it. It doesn’t mean the tragedy is minimized. It just means I can assess the road we’re walking with what I think is a pretty balanced footing.

In my interview today the nurse mentioned knowing Miranda’s purpose. I didn’t answer her because I still feel everyday we find out more and more of her impact and our purpose through it. But we knew her purpose on the night she was born, it’s what gave her her middle name…

Her life was meant to bring glory to God.

She did, and she does. There isn’t an inch of me that doubts it.

The final question I received today was “Is there anything you would change or do differently?”

I can hardly start to express all the things I would do differently if I was armed with the knowledge I have today all those many months ago.

But that’s the gift/curse of hindsight isn’t it?


pen play…

I am thoroughly enjoying Joanne Sharpe’s Letter Love class. In two recent sessions she introduced us to Pilot’s Parallel Pen and also the Noodler’s Flex Nib fountain pens. This has been both interesting and challenging.


Because I’m left-handed.

When I took calligraphy in high school my teacher was good about trying to teach me techniques to compensate but I don’t even hold my regular pen the way a leftie “should”. So instead I just made do and kept blotting paper close by. The side of my left hand was often stained and I had to re-do quite a bit of work. I can get away with calligraphy markers because the felt nibs are forgiving of my nontraditional hand position.

So today I broke out an old copperplate nib and barrel as well as a parallel pen and fountain pen.


It’s been a number of years and I think it shows. I had a hard time mixing the gouache to a good consistency and I didn’t line my paper so my letters are dancing quite a bit.



If you’re a real calligrapher you might want to look away because you will shudder at the way I hold the poor parallel pen.



Then I played with an inexpensive Plumix fountain pen from Pilot (the only thing I could find locally). I like it, the ink flows well but it isn’t a pointed pen, which I prefer, instead it is an italic (or flat) nib. It writes well but not as fine as I would want (so I’ll be ordering a Noodler’s).


I can’t wait to see what she has in store for us next… hopefully my Amazon gift cards can handle it. ;)



Teach Them Diligently Homeschool Convention 2014

reigniting my inner artist…

Those that know me well know that art has always been a huge part of me.

I studied art through high school and college, apprenticed for a designer, and painted, lettered, sketched, took pictures. A. LOT.

and then I had children…

With so many little fingers around there wasn’t space or time for the art I once did.

So I adapted.

Having my first child thrust me into the desire to scrapbook every moment of his life, but then I blinked and had 3 children and not one completed scrapbook. I played with rubber stamping. Stamps took over my craft space. When our basement flooded while I was pregnant with baby #4 (happy birthday Mikaela!!) I temporarily lost my craft space and grew a desire to craft in a way that was a little more portable. We had just started to cloth diaper so I was venturing into wool covers and had my mom teach me knitting basics. I knit A LOT. I wanted more yarn in more colors so I grabbed some undyed yarn and dug out my old dyes. CreativLEI Made was born. Knitting and dyeing soon led to spinning my own yarn too. SO. MUCH. FUN. When I began homeschooling I lost the time I used to have to dye. I still knit and I still spin though.

After losing Miranda knitting is just… different.

I should be knitting longies and sweaters for my little peanut. But she’s not here. The layette I knitted for her has been packed away. I’ve worked on some knitting for myself, mostly shawls and a little bit of spinning.

But it just isn’t the same right now.

I found an offering for an online lettering class from Joanne Sharpe (Whimspirations). It was very reasonable priced and I have nearly all the supplies in my stash already, so I signed up.

I had a blast rummaging through my stash and putting my supplies into a nice portable workcase so that I can work on my homework whenever and wherever I get a few minutes.

I love journaling and the idea of doing it a little more artistically tickles me.

We’re two lessons in so far and I’m having so much fun! It’s been a great creative outlet.

It isn’t too late for you to join in!

Be sure to say hi if your in the class with me! Can’t wait to see you there.