Many years ago, I worked at a nursing home in my area. I was an activities aide though eventually was certified as a CNA to help out when needed. When I first started there, my friends would tell me to not get attached, to not care too much. My answer was always that you can’t be in the health care field and not CARE! People can sense that and the last thing an ailing person needs to feel is that they are not genuinely cared for.
Fast forward 16 years to February, 2019… I had been laid off from my job the previous month and was in an emotional upheaval of mental darkness. Cabin fever in the long winter months up here will do that to you. A friend of mine told me that her 88 year old, aunt Peg needed weekend care.
I was unsure at first. I hadn’t been a caretaker in 16 years. I had never worked in a private setting and I had doubts that I would be able to do it. She lived in my neighborhood and I would be able to bring Aurora with me to stay with her in the weekends. I prayed about it and made my decision to go for it, doubts and all.
That first weekend caring for Peg was scary, not because of her but because of my self doubt. Despite a minor incident, we survived our first weekend.
We hit it off very well with Peg. Aurora was happy to get to help me work, Peg was happy to have a little one in the house and I was happy to feel useful and use some of that training I had gotten years before.
While caring for Peg, I decided to try to take up crocheting (after a four year break) and also took up knitting. Aurora and I would watch videos to learn. Once I decided that I was serious about learning, I bought all new hooks and yarn and went to town learning.
Peg enjoyed watching me learn and always marveled how patient I was. She would tell me that if that was her, the needles would be thrown across the room. Twenty years ago, that would have been the case for me. I guess getting older has instilled some patience in me, and I hope to be able to apply that patience in other areas of my life.
Sadly, our time with Peg was too short and she passed away last week. Though we are sad, we are happy for the time we had with Peg. Taking care of Peg helped me teach Aurora some valuable life lessons on how to care for others and be compassionate, and for that I will be forever grateful.
Fare thee well Peg, we shall miss you. I’m thankful that you inspired me to crochet and knit and I shall always think of you when I do. I’m grateful that our paths crossed, if even for a short time and I hope we meet again some day. We love you! ❤️
Another year has come and gone, and Aurora turned 5 the other day. Winter leads us to another bout of cabin fever, looking for things to do to entertain ourselves.
I’ve been seeing melting crayon art online, so Aurora and I tried it out. While our 1st attempt kinda failed (only 1 crayon really melted out of the several we had), we did get a cool little shadow looking figure on our cardboard.
After our failed melting art, I did some research online for other things to do with old bits of crayons.
I found instructions on how to repurpose old crayons and make new ones from them.
Aurora and I tweaked it a bit. Since we didn’t have cooking spray, we lined our mini muffin tray with aluminum foil. The foil didn’t work as well as maybe no stick spray would but we did still have positive results.
Some of the crayon melted into the tin so on our next trip to the store, we’ll be looking for some silicon molds that we can use in the future. We also tweaked the baking time since our crayons took a few minutes longer than what was recommended, which may have been on account t of the aluminum foil.
We turned some of Aurora’s old bits of crayons and made some pretty new chunky ones. Being that I want to experiment with different brands of crayons (to see which melt the best) we will definitely be doing this again. It was fun and it passed the time on a chilly will terrible afternoon!
From my house to yours, I wish you all a happy belated New Year’s and look forward to sharing this year with you!
2018 In Memorandum
This year has been a whirlwind year, filled with excitement and also heartbreak. It was filled with great memories and sprinkled with sad ones, with moments of gratitude in between. This year had moments that took my breath away and also moments that had me in tears. I guess you can say, 2018 has been a well-rounded year for me.
The year started off with Aurora turning 4 and celebrating with our neighbors and we had a small little party, just the few of us and we had a nice time. Aurora has grown a lot in the past year and never ceases to amaze me with her charm, her kindness and her wit. Here we are, just a few days from her 5th birthday and I am wondering where the past year has gone! Aurora has been my sidekick every single day and we have been on many adventures together. She’ll be starting Kindergarten next fall and I plan to make the most of every day with her until then, while we still have homeschool time together.
We had our first ever outdoor flower bed this year and the highlight of it was finding the two fossils in May. To touch something of nature and to know that more than likely we were the first ever humans to touch them is such an incredible, awe inspiring feeling. To touch something that may be millions of years old is to feel a magic of Nature that words simply can do no justice for. Hopefully we will be able to find so done that can some light on our fossils as to how old they just may be. I’m looking to add the Audubon Society Fossil book to our personal library since it was a handy book to borrow from our local library.
This year brought Aurora and I on many walks and outside adventures where we live, which led up to us trying our hand at raising monarchs to release. It was an endeavor that we have never tried, and we singlehandedly were successful at raising and releasing 44 monarchs! We learned a lot in the field and plan to raise more monarchs this year, along with growing our own milkweed. We plan to make a monarch calendar for purchase to help us find our monarch venture and to raise awareness for their plight. Monarchs are on the list to vote on to be put on the endangered list in the coming year and I would like to collect more I go for that. We shall also be tagging the monarchs we raise next year to track their migration progress.
September was a bit of a rough month for me with a sinus infection for a few weeks followed by a broken toe. The broken toe was my own clumsy fault because I got excited for monarch photo of and tripped over our door jam (a big huge rock brought home on a past venture) and while I sustained a broken toe that I suspect didn’t heal correctly, I got an awesome picture that will always remind me of that broken toe mishap.
I applied for a job at our local redemption center back in July and in October I finally started my 1st job since 2013. It was a bit of an adjustment for both Aurora and I, being that we have been together every moment since her birth, but we have adjusted well. While the future of my job remains unclear with corporate things going in, I am happy to have a job to help the environment and help me pay bills.
December brought the biggest blessing of the year-the birth of my grandson, Tristin on the 27th. I never thought that I could fall in love more with a baby other than my own and it brings tears to my eyes that the circle of life in my family continues. I have become a Nana (at the tender age of 46!) and my eldest has become a mother. I wish her all the best in the world for even though being a mother is tough, the rewards outweigh those hardships.
Unfortunately, there were sad times this year, having to say farewell to a few people I knew. Death is always a sad part of life, whether you know the person well or not. There were a few people that I knew that passed this year, as well as a special Facebook friend of mine, that could write prose to make the sunset cry. Like friendships, death happens and occurs in different ways. I am saddened by a couple of my friends who died at their own hands from narcotics. That always seems to be the hardest deaths to handle, knowing that the person could still be alive but isn’t because of a bad choice. Life is hard enough to deal with without having to battle addiction on top of it.
As I look back on 2018 I realized how blessed I am to have you all in my life, both virtual and *shocker* real life, to be traveling on this big blue marble we call Earth, across this sea we call life. I have enjoyed sharing my ventures with you as well as sharing your ventures. I am thankful for the friendships that have been forged from my social media. I toast my champagne to you all, with best wishes for 2019. I look forward to creating and sharing more memories with you all. From my house to yours, peace, love and light be with you all!
“There are good ships and wood ships,
and ships that sail the seas.
The best ships are friend ships
And may they always be!”