I've been a Guest Designer for TFJB Challenge Blog , as well as one other challenge blog, a few times now, but it never gets old because there are always new themes (and some old faves stuck in now or then), as well as our own changing lives that make crafting new things so exciting! This month has certainly fit the bill for weddings as far as my own home life went...
Whenever we attend a wedding, naturally I am drawn back in time to our own wedding day. As we live each day growing old together, it seems as if these 'youngsters' exchanging the same vows as we (twice; the first and then renewed vows 17 years later in 2002) did, are just kids who are off and running into life on a high speed chase after all they can find to do and have fun doing it along the way. Ah, to be young again... NO, THANKS! Been there, done that; and LIVED- by the sheer grace of GOD! Way before we set our date, we went through marriage counseling with our Minister (we were
2) Our Wedding Day, for any of us, is a huge event in our lives, and that of our family because we were joining the two as we joined together. BUT: the wedding was only the START of a MARRIAGE that was- according to The Bible as GOD's Holy Word- to be "till Death do us part". It was a permanent situation, unlike the Wedding Day, which only lasted mere hours. That first day that joins us together, and that Honeymoon getaway (whenever and wherever it's chosen) is only a tiny piece of time that you have out of a lifetime together. And it's a very teeny, tiny amount of the GOOD verses the bad times that you'll likely go through during the entire marriage- which I sincerely hope will be even longer than the 36 years (and the additional 2 years of dating prior) we've already enjoyed!
When Cec got hold of me for "With This Ring", I was already in 'wedding mode' since my own Anniversary was the next week, so I was planning on handing it all in oh-so-very-unusually-early. *sigh*
Then real life reared it's head... and it ended up being done in the past three days! While we were in Florida, the ChiefHubby's left leg began swelling. Twice before, in the past 6 years, he's been tested for blood clots with none found. By the time we made the drive (and he is a lifetime "Roy DeSoto" from my favorite TV show, "EMERGENCY!" to my own "Johnny Gage" in which Roy insists on always being the Sr of the 2 and doing all the driving- no matter what),and we'd gotten home at 10pm, it was extremely swollen and painful. We were both up at 3am with me insisting he needed to go to the ER. But, nope. I woke up the next day and about noon, Older Son, Brian, pulls up in the drive (this has happened before with others doing the Messenger Duty since I am deaf) and I got that baaaaad feeling again: "Dad drove himself to the ExpressMed and is now in the ER, and it's BAD, Mom." Oh. Joy. And boy, was I MAD; didn't bother to wake me up to go!!!
After about 8 hours in the ER and several different tests, we went from "He can go home, now" to "He's going to be admitted for overnight observation and some blood thinners" to "He's got a huge blood clot blocking his upper and lower leg and another in his LUNG- he's being transferred by ambulance to the nearest best Cardio Unit in Kokomo- an hour from here". Talk about shock! In the middle of it all: it got worse and worse when they took him after telling me I could follow them, would NOT allow me to even SEE him at all (because of their confusion of the COVID19 even after he tested NEGATIVE!) and the NEXT DAY we find out that he could have DIED and the only contact number they had was HIS OWN. Nope- we would NOT have been given those "guaranteed last moments with the dying patient during this time of COVID19" as stated in their current online rules. It was a COMPLETE MESS. What made the mess much worse; no one seemed to know how to communicate with a deaf person who reads lips. They couldn't take off their masks (after much begging from me, one finally did so, but still failed to answer any questions about how to be able to VISIT him at all). There was a LOT of pointing and nodding at the doorway. Add to that the 'care' was much less (not given any bath at all even after 2 days in the hospital initially and then another 2 days the next week after surgery- that's kind of shocking considering the called for hygiene needs demanded by this Coronavirus). Not until 24 hours before his release did we understand what was going on (NO- they were NOT explaining it to HIM either), that the reason for not seeing him at all was they required a 2nd COVID19 test and the results were floating around somewhere in which case no one knew the result. The hospital requires everyone to leave the premises during non-visiting hours (which change other than the net-posted times obviously), so there were 8 hours in between those sets of 2 hour visits. (Yet I had at that point NONE). To a wife who didnt get to say "good bye" who lives an hour away, who is handicapped, and was at that point totally exhausted... I went to the safest place- Hobby Lobby, just to use the restroom and bide some time. But the power went out when a storm hit. I was in the very back near the restrooms, in pitch black. AND DEAF as a doornail. Then I find out that the city is on lockdown at 9pm. While only the ICU Nurses seemed to be more helpful and fought for me to be able to stay when one tried to kick me out just before he was supposed to go back into surgery- that was when he'd had it and put his foot down that he had the right to have 1 family member there in the Surgery Waiting. I truly believe that Nurses are a part of the Heroes out there on the 'Front Lines', but in this case, at these two hospitals...they seemed to be more willing to run the other way. The mis-communication was inexcusable. I have Besties who were RNs and it was just as surprising to them and everyone was VERY SUPPORTIVE during all of this. It certianly put our "Golden Years" and upcoming Retirement of his (end of this year, as it stands now from this crazy way 2020 has gone) into a very different perspective on those vows of "With This Ring". And I am thankful and BLESSED to say that it all has a HAPPY ENDING: the beginning of a 'new normal' for us. (PS: COVID19 test was NEGATIVE both times. We're being even MORE serious and more careful than before. Trust me; that was SCARY. My heart goes out to any who have been there.)
The surgery found a blood clot that ran the entire length of his left leg; they were not even able to get the entire thing due to not having a long enough tool, but direct IV into his leg of Herapin overnight in the ICU after the first surgery attempt, and before the 2nd, helped a LOT, and with further medicine, he was dismissed on Wednesday the 22nd to the next 4 weeks off of rest and slowly getting back up to his normal strength. He's successfully lost over 25 lbs so far & we'll BOTH be getting back down as well as further shaping up. THANKS for the continued PRAYERS, everyone!!!!! *LOVE*
Soooo. With that in mind, it just makes us feel that the 2 Wedding Days of the children of 2 of our Besties were that much more important to us. Life, and all its milestones, are precious. We did make it to the first one in June (the project that resulted in this Guest Designer posting- that first link posted up above), but we missed the 2nd one that took place just yesterday.
Kids; these are for you- "With This Ring... I Thee Wed"
I usually crocheted my signature blanket- an American Flag in antiqued colored yarn
with the couple's last name initial as the 'stars' on the blue for their main gift.
But for my Besties, I have made dolls of their kids for Graduations and Weddings.
So this was no real 'challenge' for me.
The trick is to use the dies and tools to PERSONALIZE the dolls.
Here are the dies and tools I chose for this set.
I always use Glossy Accents for all my gluing and sealing with the dolls & accessories.
When die cutting the bodies, I usually use 4 layers
-2 layers are plain cardstock in 'skin color'- you can choose from any shade nowadays!
- and 2 layers are Matboard.
I like to face the cut sides together so that the sides are smoothed,
while the cuts may not meet exactly, it tends to look more 'rounded' like a real human. ;)
The one piece body/face is made by printing off faces from my computer,
and matching the paper up with the cut on the die.
Even easier: using the very same faces sold as remnant rubs (if you can still find them).
The rest of the clothing and accessories are usually scraps of other larger cuts from older
projects... a win/win use!!!
BONUS: These are sooo FUN and addicting!!
Dolls aren't just for little kids anymore- but the little kids still love 'em, too! :)
I also usually make undergarments for all the dolls-
because sometimes I have made the dolls to be able to 'change outfits' with the help
of adding clear Velcro circles (can be found in JoAnn Fabrics and Hobby Lobby as well as
Walmart's sewing isles) onto the front side of the undergarments and the
backsides of the clothing outfits. But, making them to change outfits means a naked backside of the dolls. So you need to decide while cutting if your dolls will be ONE-SIDED or TWO-SIDED.
The dolls shown above were cut to be two-sided.
In doing some details of Abby's dress, I decided to use a TH Texture Fade "Flourish"
to mimic the lace at the top and bottom.
Both dresses were free hand cut with both the TH Tonic Scissors
(and I finally found a pair of ) the Mini Snips.
The hair is all fussy-cut in the same free handed way. I simply use the photos to match them.
Creating flowers is easy-peasy when you use a normal sized silk leaf and pair it up with
a TH IdeaOlogy Heirloom Rose. You could also use a flowerlet from the TH Bouquet bunch!
I used Glossy Accents, again.
I have done a few other posts on making dolls. If you would like more details on
creating different kinds of people- please feel free to click on these other past TFJB Challenges:
The Results of "With This Ring"...
are both answered "I Thee Wed"...
Nori's dress (on the left) is very white, while Abby's was more of an off-white or very light cream.
Note: I used TH Ranger Stickles in Silver sparkles for matching all the
rings and the bracelet for Lenora.
I think I nailed the swatch they emailed of the tie to me, eh??
BUT- after being able to view the wedding video on FB, I note that Abby didn't have
a veil afterall. All they need to do is return the dolls via Mom (one of my Besties)
and I can change that right up with no prob.
The TH Thinlits Die Masquerade did a nice job on Jonathan's glasses! It was too cute to pass up!
All gift packaged, ready to go!
Clay and Nori will get theirs in the mail- I didn't get them in time to take with to TN.
Jonathan and Abby's got sent as a topper on their county-wrapped crocheted blanket gift.
And that's what's posted for this Challenge on
Please JOIN US; there's still time before the Tuesday 11pm deadline, and
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1) Whatever happens, remember that there is a circle that surrounds the two of you inside. There's only ONE other person in that circle with you- GOD, the Creator of Marriage. Take great care in making sure you each NEVER take a step outside of it yourselves. And NEVER allow any other person (aside from The LORD) inside that circle... this means no one- not a best friend, not a parent, nor sibling, nor cousin, etc. No one. Not even your children to come. The breaking of that circle is one that can never be wholely healed again. Patched, but never totally healed. GOD meant for you to ask HIM for help when you need it.
And 2) You WILL argue and disagree about many, many things throughout your journey of love.
Never allow it to be something that passes. Money comes and money goes...mostly GOES. So get used to that and remember that the most important thing that brought you together- is what will keep you together: LOVE. The love you felt the day you began "With This Ring"
... and finished with "I Thee Wed".
THANKS, EVERYONE; for the prayers, comments on past projects, and simply just taking the time to look at the projects, or join me in Challenges across the blog universe! There is so much LOVE out there that has poured into our lives- it's amazing, and it lets me know how richly
BLESSED I am!
And once again, we fight the COVID19;
Be Safe, Wear the Mask, Wash the Hands, Stay Home if needed, &