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« Texture Tuesday - 2 New Textures and a Brush Tutorial | Main | Friday Finds - Holiday Archives & Freebie Photoshop Brushes »

True Confessions... and Merry & Vine Photoshop Brushes

Hello Lovelies.... how are you?

Just had to pop in to share the Merry and Vine brush set I posted in the Test Kitchen...... TK members, be sure to grab it..... This is a limited eDition set..... 

Not a TK member, click HERE to join.

Want Freebies? Download the mini sampler here.

True Confessions

Oh my.... I just gotta spill this out onto the page....and outta my head.

This past week has been such a hurdle.... Monday morning John was taken to the hospital via ambulance....he's been there ever since. He started on the Leukemia ward....then he was moved to ICU. He's been dealing with AFib for some time (an irregular heart beat)..... This week.... his blood pressure was too low, his heart rate way too fast and then too slow..... On top of that...He's having fluid issues...they just can't figure out.

Thursday night his heart stopped for several seconds while he was sleeping.... Yesterday they decided to perform an electro cardioversion.... basically a jolt to the heart... To get it back to a regular rythm. So far... so good.

I'm not sure what today will bring....but gosh, I'm praying it's completely UNEVENTFUL.

On the upside... his spirts are amazing, his appetite is better, his hair is coming back....and he's looking more and more like his old self .... So good to see.


At times....especially when John is in-hospital.... I feel like I'm on auto-pilot... going through the motions.... trekking to the parking lot, jumping in the car, driving in traffic.....walking the halls.... up and down stairs/elevators...... saying hellos...goodbyes...... on and on.... 

Some days I see the people I pass....other days I look right through them. 

I suppose it's a survival thing.....

It hit me... last night as I was drifting to sleep..... the value of being present...... We are almost at 7 months since this journey began..... (what if I spent all my time in auto-pilot?) There's been way too many blessings and extraordinary encounters along the way... to have missed them all.

So today..... I am taking deep breaths..... soaking up the quiet..... and preparing to come back into the moment.... whatever it may hold.....

I'm so grateful for this space... the art I can create, the words I can share...and of course....for all of YOU. 'THIS' brings me back..... such a BLESSING... 

I'm sure I'm not alone.... maybe the Holiday Rush has you on auto.....perhaps you are feeling way too busy.... or maybe, you too are in the midst of a challenge..... whatever it may be.....

Take some time breathe...look around.... appreciate the ones you love... the blessings... even the mundane.....
Life is precious.... Life is a GIFT.
This is IT.

Until next time... have a beautiful weekend.


Reader Comments (80)

I am sending you lots of virtual hugs. Do keep taking those deep breaths. My heart goes out to you and your husband.
December 14, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterJanice Webb
Dear Kim, Sometimes those moments and even days and weeks on auto-pilot get us through. When the time comes to look back you will remember all of this. I am so sorry to hear of John's further struggle. Our prayers continue for him and for you dear one. You have been very brave. Thank you for knowing so many of us care about the journey you are on. I wrap you in prayers and love, Lynda
December 14, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterLynda Murtha
En cette periode de voeux, je vous souhaite de tout mon coeur, une amélioration dans la santé de John et beaucoup de courage pour vous.
December 14, 2013 | Unregistered Commenterclara
I think auto pilot is a way for self preservation-I believe this to be 100% true-I say this with experience from MY own Tumultuous year. There's nothing wrong with getting thru the day on day to day basis-I think any more than that would be disastrous on our well being. Of course this all just MHO-but as I'm heading out of my tunnel of darkness-I feel that auto pilot on a day to day basis helped me through the course. I'm praying for you and John-Kim. Xo
December 14, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterKelly kardos
Thinking of you during this very difficult time. And sometimes autopilot is the body's way of making it through a difficult time that might otherwise overwhelm. You give so much to all of us with your art, and to your family, so don't be too hard on yourself if your brain asks for a little respite every now and then. :)

xo Kat
December 14, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterKat @Low Tide High Style
Dear Kim~
Sending you lotsa love, and healing thoughts thru this challenging time!

Mariette xo
December 14, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterMariette
Dear Kim, You are such a valiant warrior. Thank you for sharing your deepest thoughts. I continue to pray always for you and John and your family. You are constantly in my prayers and I know many others. Continue on and rest when necessary. I think autopilot is the place to rest sometimes. love and hugs, Peg
December 14, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterPeg Rogers
Wishing you nothing but the best of everything, Kim. Many prayers for you and John xoxo
December 14, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterJan
I feel like Lynda, I think auto pilot is all we can do sometimes and that isn't bad. Life has a way of protecting up in time of need. Go with what ever you feel is right at this time Kim. We are all here for you at all times. Keep the faith and we will all keep praying that today is uneventful in a good way. God Bless You and Your family.
December 14, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterBarBbara Hurst
Thinking of you, John, your journey and your strength as a family.
December 14, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterMargie
I have many health problems and being able to be on auto pilot has helped me to get through many trying days. I do take time to just sit and observe those around me, whether it be family, or strangers in a Mall or hospital. It is during those times I remember all the blessings God have given me and continues to give me.

My prayers continue for you and John. I pray he will be well enough to be with you in your apartment for Christmas.
December 14, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterLaser
Kim, you are being present for John, and right now that is the most important thing. The rest can wait to be processed (pra-cessed where I come from, :D) when you're ready. Don't worry yourself with what you "should" be feeling or doing. We all need to get through the hard times the best we can. Save your focus and energy for John and yourself. Click off auto-pilot only to restore that energy, but not to the point of overwhelming yourself. People are sending you love and support without the pretense of anything being returned. Know that. We're all in your corner. xoxo
December 14, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterKris
Oh, Kim, my heart is with you and John and the boys, along with my thoughts and prayers that tomorrow and the next day and the ones after that...will each be better than the one before.
December 14, 2013 | Unregistered Commenterseabluelee
Hugs and prayers sent your way. What a journey you all have been on. You are so wise to try and remain positive and recognize the blessings within the trials. Peace and comfort to you all.
December 14, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterDeede
Thinking of you so hard today Kim. Breathe. No words really, just love.
December 14, 2013 | Unregistered Commenteramy bader
Oh, my dear, i have been through much of what you describe and i have come to believe that "auto-pilot" is the way our mind stays connected to our bodies in times when great deeds are needed. You describe it so beautifully. i have spent a great bit of my life counseling women who are survivors of domestic violence. Those who succeed in overcoming the effects, both physical and psychological, are those who go "auto-pilot" when they need to care for their children and their own needs. Those who do not succeed, are those who cannot detach and move into auto-pilot. i saw this process in my mother as she went through the pain of my father's final illness, and then later, the pain of my step-father's final illness. She "did the next thing" and remembered to take care of herself so she had the reserves available to care for these two wonderful men who loved and cared for her! Thank you for sharing - you write beautifully! i will remember to keep John (and you) in my daily prayers!
December 14, 2013 | Unregistered Commenterjayleigh
I know words can't really fully comfort you but praying to God above for the best of all things that bring joy and peace be blessed to you and JOhn -- dear friend keep safe in your travels.
December 14, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterK and S Inn (Kris)
Kim, I think you are amazing and have been managing this challenge admirably. I'm saddened to hear John is back in hospital and I can understand how frightening the situation is. But I must say that it does my heart good to learn how the two of you have been handling these traumatic times. You both present us with an inspiring example of how to re-act when in the midst of such difficulties. I don't know why you have been put through this but it's clear God is giving you grace to fight the battle in such a way as to remind others that no matter how difficult the times, His light is there for us to find and be guided by. I will continue to pray for a miracle for your John. And I thank you for sharing your experience and trusting that even among those of us who don't know you personally, there are those of us who care and send loving thoughts and prayers your way. That's an affirmation of the innate good in human beings. May you be blessed for the light you shine forth into the darkness.
December 14, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterSherry D'Ambrosio
Thank you so much for being so sincere and genuine in talking about the struggles you are going through. I know that when you share it helps others that are struggling. My prayers continue to go out for John and the boys and that God gives you his peace during this difficult time. Hugs and many prayers sent your way
December 14, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterSherri Cassell
All the best for you and your family I remember you in my prayers!
God bless you!
December 14, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterAcativa
Love and hug to you, sweet Kim. Yes, Life is a gift. Thank you for your post today. It reminded me of a time in my life when I was in autopilot. It was a blessing in some ways to just be able to get through the heartache, and the sheer lack of control I felt over the situation. I am praying for you and your John. Hugs, my beautiful, talented friend. May the Lord wrap you in His love, now and always.
December 14, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterDiane
I never no what to thing I know, coming from someone similar to John's situation, You being there is better than anything any Doctor can give him. But do take care of yourself....I think of you always, Kind sole.
Love Gail
December 14, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterGail Leeder
The "autopilot" IS a wonderful survival mechanism. Bad stuff we wouldnt get through without it.

SO hoping the reset for John is now going to make the big difference that let both of you go forward again.

Love and Blessings.. you are NOT alone

December 14, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterPam
I think auto-pilot is absolutely necessary at times... it's a coping mechanism and God knows you need one. Sending positive thoughts your way, and I will remember to breathe and I thank you for the reminder.
December 14, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterBarb
Hugs and love sent to you, Kim. I sooo know that auto-pilot way of getting through the situation. You feel if you are not "on" for the questions to ask, getting through the day, looking and acting positive, that you will lose it. You do need to decompress, and crash for your sanity. You cannot keep it all bottled up... let go and let God. Then, after getting everything out, you can switch back to auto-pilot again :) Just build in those times to go off the grid. Praying for you, John and the boys.
Love, Barb
December 14, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterBarb
You may be on autopilot during some times, but when you write you're not! Otherwise your words could not touch the hearts the way they do, always, and today as well. You are wonderful - including the autopilot's part. It just does his job, when needed.
December 14, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterVeredb
Dear kim I don't think it's auto pilot I think it's gods grace that takes over for us I know I have felt that grace and peace in difficult times, I pray that times get easier for you both and your dear boys much love xxx
December 14, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterChris
I'm sorry to hear you've had such a touch week Kim. I think you are coping wonderfully with this, and thank you for all the blessings you bring.
December 14, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterEileen
Kim ~ I am sending heaps of healing energy to you both ~ so so hard....and struggle is an understatement. I am praying for all things healing, all things comforting and all things loving for you both. Know we are all here and 100% keeping you in our thoughts.
December 14, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterDee
It utterly astounds me that you do what you do ad continue to deal with so much stress, fear, pain and chaos in your life. You are a stronger woman than I am. I know that we all have to do what we have do and that life throws curve balls, but you are handling things with consummate grace. I wish you wrapped in a thousand hugs from the angels. You're awesome and need to know it!
December 14, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterMarie Z. Johansen
Kim, I am so sorry this is happening. I can only imagine how you must be feeling. Hang in there.
December 14, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterLarraine
This may or may not be relevant to John's situation but I'll mention it anyhow. I have a-fib and am on medication for it. It is only triggered when I vomit so I keep medicine handy to avoid that should the urge arise. I suspect vomiting is something John's done a lot of lately, so I thought I'd mention it. The doctor's don't know why, but that's what sets me off. Continuing to pray ...

{It's such a pleasure to have you visit and comment on Camper. If my holiday mugs brought a smile to your lips, then I'm a happy girl. xoxo}
December 14, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterDotti
I think auto pilot is God's way of getting us through it.................I think about you and John daily. I pray that this week is his turning point and all good days from now on.

December 14, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterCarrie
December 14, 2013 | Unregistered Commentersher
December 14, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterLaurie
Him Kim, what a year it has been for you all, and such a scary week this week with johns health though I am glad to hear he is looking and feeling better, I do hope it continues. Life is certainly a challenge and I only thought yesterday if someone had told me this time last year we would be doing what we are now I would not have believed them (a family problem) but that's life you never know what it is going to throw at you and it's often not wanted but you have to deal with it the best you can. Wishing you all a merry Christmas and a healthy 2014.
December 14, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterLeonie-Australia
Kim, my heart goes out to you and John and your sons... oh, and Ben as well. I'm hoping and wishing for you that the future days will be better for all of you, that John is healing and that you can finally bring him back home, that you can be together as a family again.
December 14, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterCarola Bartz
Such wise words Kim. Big Hugs...You're never far from my thoughts. You, your art and this sight have helped me so much as I've struggled through my own issues over the past couple of years that I only hope I can bring you a moments peace with a big virtual hug in return! There really is strength in numbers!
December 14, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterLinda Kittmer
<3 sorry Kimmy to hear of Johns set back two steps forward one step back, here's to better days to come, and lots of positives to focus on like the hair and appetite, Here's to living in the moment and thanks for the gifts you continue to share! Gods Blessings to all of you!
December 14, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterShauna
Hi Kim, just wanted to let you know that I am sending prayers and warm thoughts your way. You have a lot on your plate so Auto Pilot is probably a good thing! Hang in there - you and John have a lot of people praying for you, so I am sure things will be better soon!! Give Ben some hugs and that should make you feel better right away - it always works for me!!
December 14, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterJoy
Kim hang on in there hugs to you and John this will past.. You are in my thoughts .
December 14, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterViv Halliwell
What a gift to be able to express yourself with written words. Just reading your words brings back so many of the emotions I kept bottled up back in 2000 when my father was sick with bone cancer. If only I had been able to get those feelings out, I probably would not have had a major burn out in 2001. I pray so that you have the strength to take care of yourself thru these trying times. Continue to share and do take care.
December 14, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterTherese
A big HELLO from Melbourne wishing you lots of love and peace xx
December 14, 2013 | Unregistered Commenterfran
I am sorry for your struggles this year Kim, keeping you and John in my prayers . We have been dealing with the cancer thing in my family this year too , my sister had her first mammogram and was diagnosed with breast cancer. She has had two surgery , chemo and then radiation and now we wait for a good result. Lucky for her no hospital stays , we have two great cancer hospitals close by and she had a nurse come in to her home to help with her medical needs. I hope your hospital days will soon be over. Take care.
December 14, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterLynn
I think you are right about the auto pilot thing. It's what keeps us going in difficult times. Those times that, when everything is fine and we hear people talk about such struggle, we wonder how they do it. Those times of which we think we could never manage ourselves. But we do... On auto-pilot....
I so often think about you, John , your sons, Ben.... How courageous you are, going on, how you find the strength to keep offering us all that sweet stuff, textures, brushes (the holiday series is gorgeous btw)... Huge thanks!!!

So sad to hear John is going through another hard time... I so hope that this is the last setback and that from now on he'll be off to a new, fresh and healthy start! ♡

Take care
December 14, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterMarl1's Images
We sure hope that this is the last setback for your dear John.
Keeping you both in our prayers. xo
December 14, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterKia and Zeno
i am discovering the beauty of deep breaths! Stay well and keep doing what you are doing for you seem to do it so well!

December 14, 2013 | Unregistered Commentersusan
Hi Kim, Today I know I should just type some nice supporting words for you and the family but sometimes I just feel like screaming for you. It's not fair, why you, you and John don't deserve this. I feel angry today. I feel like you are a long time far away friend (since 2010) and I feel so helpless in not being able to change this for you. Having said that, I do wish you all peace, joy, and love during this holiday season and hope that God continues to give you the hope and strength needed to get through these days and come out stronger at the end of it. Love and blessings to you all. Anne
December 14, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterAnne Hartman
Kim, I don't come over here often enough - one reason or another - but I want you to know how much I appreciate your continued generosity and with each e-mail I receive saying "hello friends" - I say a prayer for you and John and hope with all my might that he is fairing well and you are as well. These are set-backs, but the little upsides are the blessings that you must cling on - they are hope.

My sincerest thoughts, virtual hugs, and fervent prayers.
December 14, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterNicki
kim you are amazing!
December 14, 2013 | Unregistered Commentercathy @ ma vie trouve

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