As I sat in my study....I looked over to this stack of books, one caught my eye. Nestled down five from the top was the book, Your House, Your Home. It made me think about my own decorating style...which is never ever based upon resale or rules. I know some folks think the resale & even the decorating rules way, and good for them - but not me. I think of my house as just for me & my family, not really for others. It is my home. So if I love green, then green it is. If I want to add layers of vintage goodness, then I will. It is my house, but more importantly, it is my home.
A day does not go by that Dave or I do not share how much we love everything about our home - everything. A day does not go by that something in my home catches my eye and makes me smile. That, to me, is what makes a house a home. It reflects who you are. If anyone walks through my home, they will know what I love, what makes me smile, what is special to me.
I love that we each have the ability to make our house our home. It is our individual nest, just ours.
From my sweet Jani, Nan & Sarah (aka The Barn Cats)...
Box filled to the rim with thoughtful goodness.
Little girl from Sarah at my office...such joy.
Handmade pun-kin guy from Marie, (aka Old Lady Morgan).
Gorgeous hand crocheted lap blanket in Autumn colors left at my
Office by a teacher I work with.....Deb, it is beautiful!
A sweet bluebird salt gifted to me at the Barn Sale by Judy.
A charming kaleidoscope left on my porch by sweet Jeannine from Chicago.
An orchid from my kind friends at Satellite in Madison.
A pink rose left at the hospital by my college roommate, Darlene.
Just a bouquet of all the most recent thoughtful gifts.
And that doesn't include all the emails and cards or gifts received earlier in this journey.
I cannot say enough times that although illness brings such worry & change....
it also brings forth such rich blessings. What I have learned from my friends, from past & present coworkers, from neighbors near & far, from my Kindergarten friends to my college roommate, from my first co-teacher, to my sisters....both in blood & spirit, is that I am so lucky, so lucky.
Each day I feel better. Each day I feel stronger. You lift me up.
If you have followed along with my story, I was diagnosed with breast cancer in July. I have had three surgeries: two unsuccessful lumpectomies this summer and a successful mastectomy this past Thursday. My pathology report Friday night finally came back cancer-free, my lymph nodes are clear.
I can now focus on recovery.
Through this unexpected journey, I have actually found so many blessings. I have met such brave women who are living through & with breast cancer...so brave. The statistics are significant, one in eight women will be diagnosed with breast cancer. The earlier the diagnosis, the better. I can say that I listened to my body...although I did not find a lump, I had been experiencing general fatigue and a bloody discharge. The medical team that stepped in after I called the warning signal, were nothing less than stoic & strong. When my doctor finally called with the positive news Friday night, I could hear the relief in his voice too. I am now, officially, a breast cancer survivor.
Our local Eau Claire, Wisconsin, paper came out in pink yesterday as this month is Breast Cancer Awareness month. I understand my surgery was actually on Breast Cancer Awareness Day. My message on a personal note is the same: Early Detection Matters!
Finally I need to share the true blessings that have filled my life during these past months...it is the generosity and kindness of family & friends. Some that I have known for years, some that I may only have recently met. I have felt such love & care, such love & care.....and that has been the silver lining in all of this.
Going pink ~~~ I will now wear that color with pride. It represents courage. It also represents compassion beyond measure. I will be forever thankful.
To each of you that ventured out this weekend for our Barn Sale.
To each of you that provided words & gifts of support & care.
To each of you that drove miles & miles to be here.
To each of you that waited to get in & then get out Saturday morning.
To each of you that never cease to surprise me with your generosity and love.
You lift me up on Autumn wings!
And I thank you.
Do check out Lisa's great blog, MaryJanes and Galoshes, for a wrap up & pictures from our Barn Sale....and get the dates for her upcoming vintage sale(s) in Dalton, Wisconsin -- first one is on November 9! MaryJanes and Galoshes
Not only will this beautiful upcoming weekend, October 12 & 13, 2013
be the Meadowview Farm Barn Sale......but it will also be a weekend of
Here are a few "sale seeds" to plant in your mind!
1. Barn Sale...find your super secret password to 10% off from 9-2 on Saturday in a post below.
2. Or arrive after 2:00 on Saturday, Oct. 12, for 20% off!
3. Or how about 30% off from 12-5 Sunday, Oct. 13?
4. Of course every little detail is to the right under "Chapters"- Barn Sale!
5. And, please find me at the Barn Sale (I will be wearing a green apron) for a special "Friend of Meadowview Farm" membership card that will always entitle you to 20% savings on any item(s) from my "SPY" booth and/or case at the Hixton Antique Mall. These can only be given to you by me.......my special gift to you as a thank you for your support!
6. If this was all not enough sales, I have kicked off a "clean out the Hixton Antique Mall Booth" -- Dealer "SPY" major megaroonie sale........50% off!
7. And to grease the wheel---Hixton will have their flea market this coming weekend too........for more about Hixton---head over to the right under "Chapters".
8. Finally, if you should see a piece of furniture in my booth or at the Barn Sale with a price over $100 or noted as "Display" and you are interested in it.......I will consider a reasonable offer. The mall has my number.
9. All proceeds from this year's sales will go toward my medical expenses.
To which I replied, "You're 25...you certainly can do what you want."
"I figure if I alter my body, I should talk to you & dad first"
*Cannot remember his exact words, but his reply did include "alter my body" in it.
My first thought, how did I ever get a good guy like my Ian. My next thoughts were aloud in this amazing dialogue that followed.....first by phone, then walking to the lakefront from his new apartment in Milwaukee. He was thinking about a tattoo along his forearm of the words "live unbruised" (from a favorite Mumford & Sons song). We talked about that, I suggested that I actually thought it was better to live bruised...because then you at least lived (I also was thinking about all the bruises that currently resided on my arms & legs from goat pushes, kitten jumps, and just good hard work). His reply was that to live unbruised was philosophical, that of course we would live through tough stuff, but the goal was to let it go, to not let it damage us.
I have pondered his words, and have thought about my new normal.
So here is where I am at. I will have a mastectomy on October 17...my hope is to be done with this breast cancer....but I am not certain what they will find in surgery. I will have my very own tattoo over my heart that will live with me for my remaining years, but I will not let it damage me.....I will let it make me better, stronger, healthier. My conclusion is that I have no choice but to live unbruised. Doesn't mean that any of this is easy, it is not. I am more tired then I thought possible, and tears come every now and again in my private moments. Each day when I greet the sun until darkness arrives, I put on my brave face and go about my business....my goal, to show that cancer will not get the better of me. And it will not.
And as I debated putting out such big thoughts just weeks before my big Barn Sale....felt I should. I will count on those days the weekend before surgery & a lengthy recovery to bolster me. So if you attend the sale, there will be no gloom & doom....it is forbidden. I want laughter & smiles & good will to fill my heart until it bruises with the weight of it all.