After receiving the news that my 2-Terabyte External hard drive with all of my photos since 2004 is toast, I find myself looking for a back-up plan for any and all photos I’m able to scrounge to save somewhere. I *had* backed up my photos on the Creative Memories Digital Center site. Creative Memories rewarded their loyal customers, some of whom had been with CM since it was Shoebox to Showcase over 20 years ago (ahem, I for one), by claiming bankruptcy (again) and giving us precious little time to purchase any needed supplies for finishing projects (I’m broke so a moot point) and precious little time to salvage any photos or finished digital albums saved on the site. From what I could tell when I did check the site this summer to see if my photos were still there, my only option for saving my photos was purchasing photo CDs. Again, broke. No option to download my own photos and albums for safe-keeping? Thanks a lot CM. The way I understand it, they are “reorganizing” and have “great things in store.” Newsflash Creative Memories, your consultants and loyal customers are ticked off. Good luck with that.
Anyhoo, enough of me venting. The finality of pictures of births of my precious babies, vacations, cute candids, birthday parties, zoo trips, road trips, homeschool field trips, crafts, messes, cooking together, lego constructions, Christmas, concerts, starting our business, foodie pics, friends, family gatherings, et al. being gone forever provided for a restless sleep as I quietly cried myself to sleep Monday night (okay, I whimpered a little). I keep telling myself this world is not my home but I am sentimental and I’ve seen my kids pour over the scrapbooks I have completed. It’s a huge way to pass on the story and the love. I am the curator of the museum of memories and I have failed.
Creative Memories did drive home several points that I did take to heart and need to put back into practice:
- Print your pictures. Even if you can’t get to scrapbooking them, print them before you can’t. I took this more seriously when I used film and became lax when I went to digital. I either need to get those digital scrapbooks done or get those photos printed. Backing up isn’t enough. I backed up my back ups and my pics are still gone (did I mention one laptop crashing and then next one being reset to factory settings? I didn’t think so.)
- Back up. Nuff said.
- Journal. We all have a story to tell and no one else can tell it. Pictures in an album aren’t enough. Example #1: I have a photo of my great, great, great grandmother in one of those old, pretty but deteriorated albums. She was a Cherokee who walked the Trail of Tears, married a white man and here I am. All I have is a photo, which is awesome but I’d give anything to know her story. I wish someone had written it down. The hard times in which she lived and how she overcame would be a story of bullying this culture can’t appreciate. She had to have been a strong woman. I just wish I knew the tale so I could pass it on. Example #2: I have another old scrapbook that I believe my grandmother made. She did some pretty creative stuff, cutting photos into shapes, arranging some on one page into a star shape, but rather than journal who’s in the photos and what’s going on, she cut quotes and captions from magazines and pasted them under the photos. I look at it and get so frustrated because I don’t know why the pictures were taken, who’s in them, what’s going on. SO many cool pics, and I can tell who my dad is and his siblings and parents, but that’s about it.
Back to backing up, I’m now reviewing all of the reviews for best photo storing/sharing sites and I will come to my own conclusions and get back to you. If anyone out there has a favorite, let me know! In the meantime, learn from my mistake. Back up your backed up back ups.
What’s not shared (and thank you, God, that I have shared photos on Facebook and my blog) is lost, lost, lost…
It is exceedingly difficult to maintain a blog when you don’t have an internet connection to call your own. It is also challenging when you don’t really know if anyone is reading so why bother? I have many demands on my time. Am I wasting my time trying to keep up a blog when I’m not sure I’ll ever have a readership? Well, if I bless just one person, it’s worth taking the time to figure out a system to keep the word flow going. So, here I am, starting a sentence with so (something I was taught not to do) and trying to figure out how I am going to get this here post from my laptop to WordPress while in a coffee shop or at Wendy’s where I’ll be next Tuesdaywhile my cadets are at Civil Air Patrol and schedule at least few more posts to go out in the same period of time I need to reconstruct our business website. No stress.
“Squirrel” moment: I’m hearing the buzz about how PCs will be going by the wayside and I-Pads and the like will be “it” with handy-dandy accessories like wireless keyboards to go with them.
- An I-Pad with a keyboard may as well be a laptop. I’m sure there will be or are cases that will hold the pad and the keyboard together like, um, a freaking laptop so what’s the dif?
- The keyboards I’ve seen so far are tiny. The designers are, obviously, men who have never typed with wet nails. Some of us multi-task so fix this issue. If you’re going to make the keyboards that small, it’s texting, not typing.
- It makes more sense to me to just make an I-Top: a laptop with an I-Pad screen. This stuff is out there already, I know, so don’t throw the baby out with the bathwater. I love laptops. I will dig my heels in and make mine last as long as I can while all the fad-followers throw theirs out then suffer the small screen and smudged nails then they will look at me with envy and wonder “where did I manage to find such a wonderful relic?”
Back to the subject at hand. I love to write. I love to learn. I enjoy sharing what I learn. Therefore I shall blog. If, ever, anyone out there profits from my Wild Thyme, do comment! Bloggers are affirmed when they see comments and know they should stick around! If you think this blog worthwhile, send others this way!
I have some other posts ready to go; I just need to get the photos that go with them in order. I prefer to take the photos, arrange them while I write but I can’t do that with this situation. I’m going to have to prep my posts, order my pictures and have them in files on my flash drive which means transferring them from my external and blah, blah, blah…I’m going to have to be all organized and stuff. But the posts aren’t happening so that’s what I’m going to have to do. It’s just one more thing I have to devise a system for…sigh. I, obviously, haven’t done that, yet, so I will get on the stick! Hang in there with me!
Thanks for stopping by!
What’s not shared is lost,
“I have decided that I am not a 40 something. I am 39.95, plus shipping and handling.” That was one of my tweets today on this, my 45th birthday. It’s also Thursday which anyone on social media should know is Throw Back Thursday #tbt. SO, having a birthday that ushers me further away from 40 and closer to, gulp, 50 ON Throw Back Thursday is just asking for sentimental notions, denial and a midlife crisis. We see our kids turn 10 and we say, “Oh, they grow so fast!” I see me turn 45 and I’m thinking, “Where did the time go?”
There’s a saying that goes “You don’t stop playing because you grow old, you grow old because you stop playing.” Add that to one of my responses to inquiries about the number of children we have, “They keep me young,” and we have a formula for a fountain of youth. Now that grandbabies have entered the scene, there will be no end to my shenanigans!
It’s been through being a mom that I have, quite serendipitously, re-discovered my “inner youth” and have tried to get it right this go ‘round. For example, when I was a school-girl, I would bring home those arts and crafts books from the school library, look at all the cool projects I wanted to tackle then promptly NOT make a single one of them.
This school girl here. The 70s, the height of fashion….
I believe that was due to my serious lack of self confidence…among other things. Then comes along the Fecher kids
who don’t know they’re supposed to be intimidated by trying new things, have creativity and talent oozing out of their ears and I’m a new woman…girl. They have been contagious. Now, when I get on Pinterest, I see a project I want to attack, make a supply list and the next thing we know, the kids are asking each other, “Why is Mom painting clothespins?” (True story). I have a refreshed appetite for adventure, travel, friends, creativity and play.
I also have a constant reminder of what child-like faith looks like. I get stressed out. But something has been reprogrammed in me that keeps the worry at bay. Like a kid, I see and feel God taking care of me and I know that even when there’s absolutely no money available for business bills, God will come through somehow and I watch and wait for it. I get antsy when bills are past due or I don’t get a much-needed catering job. I fret when a child is injured or sick or when the youth of our household make less-than-ideal decisions (we’ve had open discussions about how people are all stupid, us included, and this expected). But each time I venture into “worry-land,” the “que sera sera” comes over me like a wave. Kids love anticipation. I do, too. Something the kids have taught me is that the problems that normally cause worry should create anticipation for what God will do. I wish I could remember which Christian speaker it was that I heard talk about problems. (If you know who this is, let me know). He said, “All God’s people got problems. If you don’t have a problem, you come forward and we’ll lay hands on you and pray God gives you a problem. Because if you want to see a miracle, first you gotta have a problem! You can’t have a miracle without a problem!”
One of my mantras is “Never a dull moment!” Big family + new season of grandbabies +a business = problems-a-plenty or, what we affectionately call them, “growth opportunities.” Also opportunities for miracles. Never a dull moment.
I’m looking forward, with anticipation, to another year of growth opportunities…and miracles. :o)
What’s not shared is lost,
One would think with being told by the doctor to stay off of my feet for at least two weeks that I would have been able to catch up on my blog before now. I’ve been doing a lot of reading up on blogging to give myself some motivation but that hasn’t made any posts magically appear. I keep thinking that once I catch my breath, I’ll write something. Who am I kidding? I don’t think that’s going to happen anytime soon. And while I’ve been waiting for that “spare” moment to happen, SO many events have transpired that I have failed to journal while in the moment. I’m not getting any younger; I’m not going to remember things unless I write it down, take a picture (or 10) or there is some sort of food that’s part of the event that will create a dendrite in my brain that will stir up the memory when I get a whiff of said food at a later date. I have blogged about my not blogging before. I probably will again. I need to write and it’s extremely frustrating when I don’t. There’s also something to be said for “use it or lose it.” There was a time when I could write rather well without it being a struggle. For example, that last sentence took me about 5 episodes of backspacing until I was satisfied with the wording. Good grief.
I have a ton of pictures I want to post, cakes I want to display, stories to tell and, eventually, recipes to share. I heard someone once say that if you haven’t given up, you haven’t failed so here I am again. I’m at it again and I’m making an effort to be organized and set a time to write even if I don’t post.
That being said, here’s a “brief” description of the whirlwind that has transpired in our family since the end of May:
- I “possibly” tore a tendon and/or ligament in my foot and “possibly” broke a toe carrying my toddler to bed at 3 in the morning
- My sons dug out my crutches so I could hobble about
- I had to go for x-rays the day before 2 graduation cakes needed to be done so Natalie and Noah started the cakes and icing while I headed to Eaton, Ohio for my doctor appointment with Isabelle as my helper. I took her for lunch, waited for the downpour to let up, then headed to Dayton for fondant as we did not have enough for both cakes and didn’t have time to order any.
- MEANWHILE, back at the ranch, my boys are digging through closets and our storage shed to find my walking cast so I can work on the cakes the next day (even though I was supposed to get off of the foot ASAP)
- My oldest who was due May 29 went into labor that night
- Grandbaby #2 Rosemarie Lee was born June 1, 7:17a.m. Praise the Lord!
- However, instead of heading off to see my new grandbaby, I had to go to our catering kitchen and finish cakes with Natalie and Noah. Natalie had to leave for an interview, came back to help some more then had to go to the theatre for play rehearsal. I love doing cakes and I love our clients but that was not where I wanted to be that day. Plus, I was in excruciating pain (which made me a tad grumpy but Noah was a good sport, I must say). I confess my heart was not in it and I did not do as good of a job and I normally would have. :o(
- FINALLY…Noah and I met up with the rest of the family at the hospital to FINALLY hold my new grandbaby and see my firstborn on her first day as a mommy. Talk about overwhelming…..
- Went back the next day, hobbling on crutches, to see my grandbaby. By that night, my foot and ankle were pretty sore and pretty swollen.
- SO…the rest of the week, I tried to be a good girl and sat with my foot up. Anyone who knows me knows I like to keep busy. This has not been easy! I kept the kiddos busy with school, cleaning missions and laundry while Natalie covered the shop all week AND had rehearsals for the play she was in.
- Jump to this past Thursday, my daughter, Corinne, called to let me know she was coming into town early. She and her husband had already planned on coming in this weekend to see her first niece but Josh was informed that he might be working Saturday but they would not be able to let him know until Saturday SO…inhale…Corinne decided to pack her and Autumn Rose up and head on down to stay for a long weekend. YAY!
- Meanwhile, back at the catering kitchen, Natalie and Noah were to the rescue again by starting a cupcake order.
- Always the one to be obedient to doctor’s orders, the kids and I met up with Corinne to visit with Lenae and the new baby. (We’re on Friday at this point. Are you keeping up?)
- Saturday A.M., I went in with Noah for the cupcake pick up.
- Headed home but stopped for pork loin and sides to take to Grandpa’s for family get-together. Again, “staying off my feet.” Hobble, hobble….
- Loaded up The Great White and ventured to Grandpa’s to visit with the grandbabies (and their parents and Grandpa). (Natalie could not join us as it was performance night for the play!)
- I’d like to interject that I had Benjamin throw together a rub for the pork that was outstanding, I must say.
- Natalie and Jillian left to pick up their BFF, Noah, and head to Richmond Civic Theatre where Corinne, Ben, Noah and I joined them to watch their production of The Tempest by William Shakespeare. Natalie was “Iris”, a sassy spirit. The play was fantastic as was Natalie. Proud mama.
- MEANWHILE, Craig hauled everyone back home including Grandbaby #1.
- Sunday… we slept in. Kids scrounged up pancakes and Corinne procrastinated about heading home. She was anxious to get home to her hubby but didn’t want to leave at the same time. It was a sweet visit and I’m glad she came early. My Autumn and her Autumn, though, have become pretty tight and I’m not sure how long they can go…she did say they might come visit again, soon, because Josh didn’t get to see the baby! We shall see…
So…this is a “quick” rundown of the past 10 ..T-E-N ..days of my life. A lot was left out! SO…somewhere in this…I passed myself coming or going….
What’s not shared is lost,
I started my day yesterday with a bee in my bonnet. It started out appropriately somber but then I peeked in on Twitter. My intention was to just post a simple remembrance as, I thought, everyone else does in honor of 9/11. I must be naive. I cannot believe the tweetabomination I witnessed. I believe people should be allowed to share their opinions, no problem there. But I also believe there are people with opinions that need readjusted for the sake of humanity. I’m just glad I know God is in the “readjustment” business and will take care of it. A gal I follow shared this young attitude’s tweet who posted, and I quote,
I had a pit in my stomach to begin with; I usually do on 9/11. This post made me sick. While it’s my contention, after perusing his profile and reading his tweets, this kid didn’t get spanked enough as a, um, younger kid (save your anti-spanking lecture for another blog) and has a chip on his shoulder the size of Texas that will, most certainly, land him in the hospital, prison or the morgue, there’s not a thing I can do for this ungrateful, brain-damaged youth (except pray that he’s saved from a fire or car accident – caused by his marijuana activism – someday by a firefighter who read this particular tweet – yea…I can pray that).
What I CAN do is cancel out this ONE guy’s ignorance by making sure my TWELVE kids NEVER. FORGET.
SO, in lieu of our usual morning devotion, I gathered the 10 that were home around my laptop to watch this video:
There were tears. The older ones recounted what they remember. I shared how I found out: we haven’t had broadcast TV in years and we were finishing up our devotion time so the radio was off and we had no idea what was occurring. My Mom called almost hysterical. She knew my routine and knew I would, most likely, not be aware of the tragedy that had befallen us. We were still unsure if it was an accident or terrorism at that point. It was so surreal. And so frustrating! I couldn’t turn on a TV and see what was going on. I called my husband at work and they were all watching it. I called my mom back and we were on the phone as she updated me with what she knew and then the second plane hit. I heard my aunt yell in the background. My mom cried out and told me what happened. I started to cry and my confused kids were gathered around asking what was wrong. It was a blur then and even more-so, now.
I don’t know at what point we decided to go to the library but we did. I was surprised to find it open as time seemed to stand still; the city was SO quiet. We checked out books on skyscrapers, New York City and the Twin Towers. We went home and poured over our findings as we read together about the architecture of the buildings that had collapsed earlier that day. We had so many questions, like everyone else. Why would God allow SO many to die? Why the Twin Towers? I don’t need to list them all – everyone asked those questions. As we studied how the buildings were designed our discussion quickly switched to how many people were saved. This was before we heard of the many stories of folks who were late to work that day or had to call in sick. In case you missed it, if the Twin Towers had been built like most of the buildings in that day, they wouldn’t have fallen straight down. They would have collapsed over onto other buildings. Do you think there’s a chance that God had His hand on who would be the architect and how these buildings would be built since He knew what was coming? I do. Check it out, if you’re interested:
- Why Did the World Trade Center Collapse? Science, Engineering, and Speculation
- WTC Twin Towers
- The Innovative Design of the World Trade Center Towers
- Construction of the World Trade Center
We have free wills, given to us from God. Therefore, free wills who choose to believe in and act on evil will be evil. That’s the fallen world we live in. We also live in a world of beautiful, courageous people as evidenced that day by firefighters and police officers trying to save others. We also have a God who loves us and plans for us. He planned how buildings would be made, what brave people would be needed on the planes to avert further catastrophe, a couple of fender benders to make some people late, I read of someone spilling coffee all over themself so had to run home to change clothes, the list goes on. I also know there are people serving our country attempting to prevent this from happening again. I don’t pretend to trust our government but I do trust the men and women serving our country.
It’s late and I’m starting to ramble. Let me cut to the chase – history is loaded with tragedy. From the Garden until now, pride, greed, anger, bigotry and other assorted forms of hatred have let people to commit incomprehensible acts against mankind. We should not be surprised when it happens. It seems as though it’s to be expected but we are shocked when tragedy strikes. We should be. We should visit history often, be shocked then thankful so we don’t become like the self-absorbed, apathetic, ungrateful, smart alleck twitterbrat mentioned above and so we NEVER
Get Over It.
What’s not shared is lost,
Why is it so much fun to root for a team and go crazy when they win and go crazy when they lose? Why do some of us enjoy the Twitter and/or Facebook banter while watching the game? Why have people traveled from around the country to converge on Indianapolis? Why did we make a gazillion Football Cake Pops this week?
I enjoyed this Super Bowl. It was a nail-biter! I got a kick out of going to Indy to take in the “once-in-a-lifetime” chance to see a city completely converted into Super Bowl City. And it was cool, I might add. I know that the camaraderie that fans share is a part of the energy. I know anticipation is half the fun of any special event and getting ready for The Big Game whether it’s hosting a gathering or just going to a friend’s to hang out and watch is something to look forward to. But why is so much stinkin’ money sunk into a sport? I read this article on how this “game” adds up and about choked! The bottom line is “$11 billion: Amount consumers are expected to spend on the Super Bowl (hey, those chicken wings aren’t free, people) each year.” This article doesn’t even touch on how much these athletes make each year. It wouldn’t seem so unreasonable if there were balance i.e. if firefighters, police officers, teachers, our military, etc. made as much or more. I’m not saying these players don’t have skill and they certainly brought it to the Super Bowl and gave us a game to remember! (I was on the edge of my seat!) But, I confess, I feel sad that this game has become bigger that our holidays and it’s players put on such high pedestals! I love football but it’s FOOTBALL! I’m pretty sure we could have purchased world peace, Madonna, with the amount you were paid to perform tonight. Just sayin’.
I guess I’m done venting. For now. Don’t get me wrong, I enjoy a good football game, am a Colts fan (rooted for the Giants this game), and get a jolt from all the Super Bowl hype. This year’s game was worth watching, that’s for sure! And there were some pretty good commercials (writing in Clint Eastwood as President. I’d write in Matthew Broderick as V.P. but I’m not sure that he wouldn’t call in sick). I. Hate. The. Go-Daddy Commercials. Just wanted to put that out there.
All that being said, we gathered at my Father-In-Law’s to watch the game on his big screen, a few of the kids’ friends came over, and we had nachos, chili, pizza and, of course, cake pops.
The kids spent most of their time in the basement playing play station. Losers. Go over to watch the game and…oh well, at least my young men were spared some of those risqué commercials. The small fries kept themselves busy with the fun stuff stashed in Grandpa’s hutch like the ever popular Playdough and wipe-off board. We had fun. Football with family & friends. How could we not?
Status updates from the day:
- 6 y.o. Just now-”Since today is #SuperBowl , can I wear something pretty?” LOL!
- Some of these commercials make me glad my teenage sons have decided to play PlayStation instead of watching the game.
- Funniest thing tweeted tonight: “If Madonna tebows at the end of this, the world might explode.” -Mo Thieman
- I was kinda hoping Madonna would do Express Yourself just to remind Ms. Gaga & everyone else where the song originated. #bornthisway
- Visualize Whirled Peas! Stop the Violins!
- Just asked, “Whose voice is that?” for the Ford commercial. The 6 y.o. chimed in with “Diego’s!” #IceAge
- GIANTS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! GAaaaaahhhhh!!! I’m so stressed out!! I need chocolate!!
- “Great Giant win. First Tush Down I’ve ever seen.” Billy Crystal
What’s not shared is lost,
I don’t usually make New Year’s resolutions. Opportunities to start a new happen at any given time throughout a year, changes happen, the school year starts, the summer begins, a baby is born every other year here (usually), and stuff just happens that requires starting over. But after the year I’ve had, I decided I needed to be resolved. Resolved to get my house back, get back to scrapbooking, taking my kids on road trips again, getting organized and getting back to blogging. It is January 7th and I’m just now writing. And I’m so pathetic, I’m writing about how I haven’t been writing.
I have people asking me quite often to write a book. A blog is the best I can do, folks. I’m not sure why anyone would want me to write a book but I am flattered. There’s a plethora of books out there by large, homeschool families so I don’t think we need another one. There are plenty of cookbooks so not sure I want to tackle making another one interesting. Anything I could write about has been covered, I believe. Man, I’m being a downer, aren’t I? So, here’s the deal, I love to write, always have. It’s therapeutic and, occasionally, blesses others so I told myself I’d get back to this but I’ve already procrastinated a week. I could make it a goal to blog weekly but then I’d procrastinate to a month later so I better just find where I laid my self-discipline so I can get back to it.
A new year does lend itself as a convenient time to go back to the drawing board so that’s what I’m doing. I have organized my calendar already and I think I’ve found a way to tackle my to-do lists without getting overwhelmed. I just opened up Memory Manager and downloaded some photos and did some editing. There may be hope for me, yet. I’m writing this post, lame as it is, but it’s better than what I wrote yesterday which was nothing. I might actually get the hang of this resolution thing. Oh, and I worked out again, something that had been neglected last month.
Wish me luck and hang in there with me! I’m still here!
What’s not shared is lost~
I don’t have time to blog but feel compelled to tell somebody, anybody that I am staying home today. Every day that I purposed to be home for a day, duty has called me, demanded that I go somewhere. I have been trying for some time to explain to my DH, who is also frustrated with my non-stop running, that starting a business would require a huge amount of busy-ness and running to and fro is a part of the deal.I confess I’ve been anxious about this because I already have a full-time job being a homeschool mom of many. BUT, today, I am determined that I will be home, I will conquer the mountains, albeit organized mountains, of seasonal switchover, plan the menu for church on Sunday, have the house clean, pay bills, do some marketing, AND homeschool….all in a single bound. I do, in fact, take Supermom pills and something makes me think I should go take them…I’m going to need them.
I have been asking God over and over again how I am suppose to be a homeschooling mom while doing this catering thing but Craig keeps reassuring me that God wants us to do this and He already has it all figured out. Dear God, being the coordinator of all things homeschool AND business start-up, I really need You to let me in on the plan so I know how to do this. I realize our mornings are starting earlier and earlier and am counting on those hours for school but I need to know the rest of the game plan. Thank You.
Well, with the hub-bub of getting the day going, I cannot think to write so will call this one short and sweet. And that’s okay, because I’m staying home with my precious hub-bub makers and I’m going to enjoy every interruption.
Play with your food!