“Life isn’t about waiting for the storm to pass, it’s about learning how to dance in the rain.” – unknown
Dance in that storm! Even if it takes using a bright big red umbrella to give you a feeling that you can make it through. My great big red umbrella has been my friends and family, my sweet furry companions, and hope for a bright sun shiny day.
I see it clearly.
Day 356 was created in pen & Letraset Tria Pantone Markers
*** I apologize for the quality of this image – something is not working with my wordpress blog. I was in a panic but…. weathered the storm and decided to see if I could post the image from my PHONE! Crazy but it worked and then I was able to add the words. Where there is a will – there is a way 🙂
1 1/2 teaspoons freshly grated nutmeg
1/2 cup sugar
3 cups 1/4-inch bread cubes
2 tablespoons melted butter
Grated rind of 1 lemon
2 pounds large apples
2 to 4 tablespoons cold water (optional)
Preheat the oven to 375°F.
Combine the nutmeg and the sugar and set aside 2 tablespoons. Put the bread cubes in a bowl and toss with the rest of the sugar mixture, the melted butter, and the lemon rind.
Peel, core, and slice the apples into fairly thick wedges. Line the bottom of a heavy 1 1/2-quart casserole with 1 cup of the bread cubes. Layer half of the apples over the bread and top with 1/2 cup of the bread cubes. Layer the rest of the apples in the casserole and sprinkle with water. Cover with the rest of the bread cubes and evenly sprinkle the reserved 2 tablespoons of sugar over the top. Put the lid on the casserole or cover tightly with foil. Bake in the center of the preheated oven for 40 minutes. Take the lid off the betty, and bake for 10 to 15 minutes longer, or until apples are tender and the topping is brown.
Listen to the Mustn’ts, child, Listen to the Don’ts Listen to the Shouldn’ts The Impossibles, the Won’ts Listen to the Never Haves, Then listen close to me — Anything can happen, child, Anything can be. – Shel Silverstein
I’m being drawn to the words and images of the great children’s writers. I wish we could keep being told the lessons we teach our children; the lessons of love and persistence and of starry eyed dreams of childhood.
As an adult it is so difficult to keep going after your dreams and to continue to believe that anything can happen, anything can be.
Do not listen to naysayers. We sure as heck wouldn’t let our children listen to them. Hold on to your dreams and don’t listen to anyone who insists on telling you what you can’t do.
Dig up those stories and listen to their messages…
And sprinkle in some pixie dust for good measure!
Day 342 was created in pen & ink in the style of Shel Silverstein with a twist – a little girl instead of a boy and a blue apple for spondylitis instead of a yellow star.
I weighed all of the options, listened to all of your comments, support, and opinions (which were so wonderful!) and in the end, I’ve decided to keep with the rules I placed on this endeavor all of those days ago.
Perhaps this means I’m not as courageous as I thought. But… in the end, I’ve decided to listen to the same counsel that got me past day eight when I almost quit before I had really even begun. That night, my husband Doug and my friend Elizabeth were there for me; they didn’t let me quit.
I received an email from Elizabeth this morning and she said
If you are good with it, and it can make you be freer with the process, than go for it and enjoy yourself in the doing. But if at the end of the month you start dissing yourself because you didn’t do what you said, and you are disappointed in you, then stay with the 5×5.
I read Elizabeth’s email to Doug we discussed the fact that if I don’t change the rules I won’t regret it because I will have completed exactly what I set out to do but if I do change the rules, it is possible that I will be disappointed. Which got me thinking about about regret and regret stinks. So, although I would adore to break out and go crazy and play and “break all of the rules” and go to the place my imagination would like to go – to go where the wild things are, I will instead turn towards home – to what I know, to a place of safety. I do think creativity takes courage – courage to break from convention, to explore but I do not want to regret my decision and hopefully I will create courageously even if I’m taking a step that seems a bit less so.
AND… as Sabrina mentioned, I can break out at the same time I keep to the rules. So, look out for some extra apples this month!
I cannot believe how fast the days are flashing by right now. Didn’t we just have a Friday?
In the fairy tale The Princess and the Pea, the princess has to prove she is who she says she is by recognizing that she is sleeping on a pea. The moral is not to judge a person by appearances since the princess shows up in the kingdom bedraggled and a complete non-princessy mess.
None of us should ever have to prove our value and substance. We are enough just as we are. Simple.
I first saw this quote a few years ago on my step-daughter Amanda’s facebook page and I was thrilled. Thrilled because I loved the quote but thrilled mostly because I felt so proud of the woman she had become. Leaping isn’t an easy concept, in fact it is darned hard every single time we do it. But, believing in leaping did allow for Amanda to move across the country in hopes of a job and something a bit different, it did allow her to persist in her pursuit of her MBA despite the challenges with financing an advanced degree, and it did allow her to make it the 9 miles she hiked this past weekend in preparation for a trip out to Colorado to climb her first 14’er.
Fourteeners, or 14,000 foot peaks as they are most affectionately known and of which Colorado has 53 or 55 depending on who you ask. Reaching the top of one allows for boasting and bragging rights when “bagged” and adoration if all of them are successfully summited. Thankfully am allowed to continue living in the state of Colorado because I did in fact “bag” one. Amanda and her boyfriend Tony have been training for their visit over Labor Day weekend to hike with Doug up either Evans(14,265) or Grays(14,278). Hopefully they will have better weather than she and Tony had this last weekend because they were miles from their car and it started to downpour and then hail! And, the last few miles back were uphill to the trail head. All in all, it sounded miserable but Amanda spoke like a true Visscher and emailed that “at least our new hiking boots are broken in” and “I felt like this hike was a little out of my skill level, but I made it, (of course, at some point you don’t really have a choice, you have to finish if you want to get out) it was a good challenge, though.”
And isn’t that it with most difficult situations in life. We can leap, face adversity and unknowing head on, and finish because that is what we have to do.
My step-momish reply… “You did it! I love these kinds of stories – you will tell it over and over… and it show that we can do whatever we set our minds to. And this way… we know when we do have to surrender – then our minds and bodies truly mean it.”
I loved to push myself before being diagnosed with AS. I did some crazy things to prove to myself that I could do physical things. I think I knew quite young and many years before I got very sick that things with my body weren’t quite right so I pushed and climbed, and skied, and jumped. And I’m grateful for every insane thing I did because now I know that my mind and my body really mean it that I can only do so much. I will still push myself only it will be in a different way.
5. Check out the new and improved emails from – The Daily Apple! If you haven’t already done so, please sign up to receive apples in your inbox. The New Daily Apple will include information that I don’t post on my blog including art, health, and of course… apples and whatever strikes my fancy 🙂 Take a look at a sample and sign up!
The Red Baron, Snoopy with the typewriter, I even considered the image of Snoopy hugging the heart and switching it for a red apple (that would have been cute) but in the end I went with classic Snoopy konked out on top of his now apple shaped dog house hanging on to the stem to keep from falling off the curved top! Doesn’t seem to have bother Woodstock one bit!
Snoopy and I are hanging on – heading down the home stretch.
Day 317 was created in pen & ink and illustrator markers by Letraset.
3. AS’er Blogger Maya – Loving With Chronic Illness. Maya is a truly gifted young lady, she wrote a poem about her brother that I adore and posted here on my brother Jason’s Birthday. Maya’s blog was voted Top Chronic Illness Blog of 2010 – boy did they get that right!
5. Check out the new and improved emails from – The Daily Apple! If you haven’t already done so, please sign up to receive apples in your inbox. The New Daily Apple will include information that I don’t post on my blog including art, health, and of course… apples and whatever strikes my fancy 🙂
About a month ago I posed a question on my Facebook page asking people what their favorite fairy tale was because I was looking for ideas for The Daily Apple and I received some amazing suggestions. Initially I was thinking of doing a week of Fairy Tale Apples but I decided that I would go insane and good ideas might start to get blurred together so…
I will be doing a Friday Fairy Tale apple each Friday from now to the end of my year and I have been really wanting to do Cinderella’s Carriage as an apple instead of a pumpkin.
Doug says I should have made the carriage red or green or yellow even – I can’t win! But to me it was always going to be a golden apple carriage.
A few updates:
1. The Daily Apple will be coming in your emails again soon – I’m working on changing the service so I can get you better information.
2. The Apple-A-Thon plans are coming along. Please make sure to mark your calendars for September 29th & 30th and sign up under separately with the “Contact” tab to receive information specific to the event.
3. Send me your apple ideas! I’ve got another 50 days to go and ideas are greatly appreciated at this point. Feel free to be as creative as possible and don’t worry if you think I have already done your idea – I got an idea from someone the other day and it was awesome and I hadn’t done it yet!
4. If you haven’t joined my Facebook page – I post The Daily Apple there too as well as things about art and health. I’d love to have you *like* me.
5. You guys are all so fantastic – thank you for supporting me through this year.
Day 316 was created in inks and watercolor – and gold metallic!
He is someone who I can laugh with, share my day, my successes and failures, and someone to lean on in the difficult times. Don’t get me wrong – we’ve had our times and our disagreements as all marriages do.
Doug has dealt with the ups and downs of this last year right by my side. He has been my biggest support in this; he lives this daily with me and he has on a few occasions been very concerned and upset that perhaps I’ve put too much of myself into this journey. You see, he was there when I couldn’t move, when I didn’t want to get into the car to go anywhere because every little bump caused me horrible pain, and he was there when I was humiliated by neurologist from Stanford who laughed at me when I was desperate for an answer.
So… he watches over me and is a voice of reason for my passions and drive. He does not want to see me go back to those days if there is any way he can prevent it – he will – even if that means tough love on occasion. But I want to tell you all that Doug Visscher is my hero. He is a man who has stood by me and loved me in my worst of times and I adore him. I couldn’t have asked for a man to love me more. We have weathered some big storms and we are stronger because of them.
Today was difficult day and he brought me flowers. I love getting flowers, what woman doesn’t but I loved the ones today the most of any he’s ever given me because these flowers said “you are going to be ok & I love you.” And I know that as long as I have my good man next to me – that those flowers are right.
Day 314 was created in Letraset Pantone Tria Markers and a touch of watercolor.