Sunday, February 12, 2017

Feels Like Home

Exhaustion settles in as I sink into my seat at LAX. It's been a long week of meetings, a long few months of training, topped off with a few much needed fun days with my family here in Los Angeles.  

This last year or so has been one of both getting lost and self discovery, literally. I left my long lost career of comfort with Eli Lilly selling pharmaceuticals for diabetes. I was burnt out of feeling like I could not do enough to serve my customers and their patients. I was burnt out from being the token diabetic among my peers and management. Growing up with my self title of token diabetic in a rural North Dakota town was fine. It was incredible, actually. I knew my coach and friends had my back at basketball games and track meets by always knowing where the glucose tabs were or even holding a cup of Coke for me as I circled the 400 meter lap 8 times, people within my community understood enough to have something unique for me while trick or treating at Halloween to make me feel just like everyone else,  and my BFF had an in to get me a peanut butter and/or jelly sandwich at the drop of a hat anytime of day from the lunch ladies. Small towns really are like what the country songs make them out to be, at least mine was...

But being the token diabetic at work is different, difficult actually. Even though I was immersed among all of these people who sold in the industry of diabetes, only a few of us lived with it or had a family member or close friend with type 1 diabetes. No disrespect to anyone anywhere but you need that criteria to truly get it. I know I stand united among my peers who have to have insulin to survive in that statement. So I chose to leave that behind by leaving the human side of pharmaceuticals and joined the animal health side, Elanco. This is where the literal part comes in because I actually got lost on dairy farms across the Dakotas. I dare say it was refreshing to visit large family farms and walk the lanes with farmers in boots up to my ankles in manure. While the smell was not my favorite, the opportunity to have meaningful discussions with multi million dollar farmers who are providing dairy for cheese, ice cream, and milk that graces all of our tables was a fresh opportunity for me. I embraced it. I assumed that was it, I'd retire there. Growing up on a farm and returning to that in my career was a full circle, end of story. Until a dear friend called me at 8PM one night while I was driving home from a large dairy farm and told me to come back to diabetes.
She explained a new job opportunity was going to be posted with DexCom, a company that focuses solely on CGM, continuous glucose monitoring, the one tool in my toolbox of treating my diabetes that has been life changing over the last several years. If you have a DexCom or are following someone who does, you understand what I mean by life changing. After a whirlwind of considering, applying, interviewing, accepting, and training, I find myself among new friends. And somehow, it feels like home to me.

Sure, the cows were great, but I know I can do the most good with people. People immersed with diabetes, not just selling in the space, but living with it or loving those of us who do. I don't have any other words to describe it but when I received a company email highlighting business updates and pictures from a national meeting, the image above brought a lump to my throat. I don't even know who these wrists with Apple watches monitoring blood sugars belong to, but I know we have something big in common. And the fact that DexCom gets that and thrives on that speaks to my soul.
And so, I've discovered I couldn't stay away from this thing I carry with me every moment of every day, that may very well be with me until I take my last breath, and that is okay. It took me leaving the industry of diabetes to realize it is home to me. Not the disease but the people who live it with me, among me, like me. It's good to be home...

Thursday, May 12, 2016

"Stuck" with Eachother

I cannot even begin to explain how much I am loving this new succulent set from My Favorite Things! Stamping, water coloring embossed images, die cutting, oh this one is a must! So, we celebrated our 14th wedding anniversary last night and I had so much fun creating this card for Eric! The sentiments make the set! :)

Here's my finished card...

I stamped images with Versamark all over the background on watercolor card stock and would've loved using white embossing powder but we moved most of our stuff to a townhouse last weekend, some is still at my parents' place, the moving/building process continues! So, couldn't find anything other than clear embossing powder and I made it work. I used lots of Distress Inks to watercolor and finished it off with the sweet Stuck w Me stamp. Happy is from PTI and anniversary is from SC. 

I dropped the stamp on the inside of my card while tripping over items in our moving process but that's the great thing about A) adding a stamped image over my mess up and B) a husband who won't notice! :) After 14 years still so happy to be stuck with him! I told him at dinner last night after 14 years, 4 houses, 2 daughters, 2 dogs, his two jobs and my 8, several in unique industries ranging from elementary teaching to animal health sales, our countless trials, even more amazing memories, and all the adventures yet to come, I know we were meant to take this journey of life together. And we will even make it through this crazy chaos of building a house!

Here's the set from My Favorite Things. When I ordered it only the pots die was available but I'm realizing I need the larger due set as soon as it's back in stock! Check it out herehere and happy Thursday!

Monday, April 25, 2016

Faith in Our Foundation

I mentioned in my recent post that we are busy with lots of usual life events but building a new home is taking a big priority among the usual chaos. Years ago I had found this idea to write Bible verses that stirred something in me on the foundation of your house while building. I loved the idea but never in a million years thought we would build our own house. Love to admit I was wrong and with the framing complete on the first floor, the girls and I had so much fun writing verses in all of the rooms on the main level! This first one is my absolute favorite right now, with a middle school aged daughter and 4th grade daughter, humility and kindness is a constant topic in our house so I wrote this one in the closets:

This one is in the office, another one to consider in our everyday lives among the work you do...

Both of my girls had so much fun writing on the frames with Sharpies, breaking the age old rule of not writing on the walls was a freeing experience for them! :) Graci wouldn't let me get a photo of her but here's Addi writing Psalms, Taste and see that the Lord is good, another good one in the kitchen...

Here's one for the front entrance and Addi added her doodles to it as well...
Eric wasn't finding the time to join in because he was busy checking out the actual foundation of the house versus our faith foundation so I wrote this one on the steps just for him! : )
And my absolute favorite from 1st Corinthians, a common verse that is in so many wedding ceremonies. I know it was one of our passages, was it in yours as well? I haven't truly read it since and that is almost 14 years ago, our marriage has gone through many challenges in those years and rereading this with an open heart confirms my faith in Eric and our marriage.
Building a house has been incredibly exciting and fun but also a bit stressful in addition to starting a new job in a completely different industry, living in temporary housing, not knowing where we are living in a month, trying to keep our daughters' lives as routine as possible among it all, and keeping up with all the other roles we all have as adults within our communities, friends, and family is a tall order. Writing that all out just made my heart jump a bit, how do any of us keep up with it all? I try not to think about it too much but one thing this verse impaticular reminds me is that there is no one else I would want to share this adventure with than Eric...
This is our final moving day as we loaded into storage our last items late January, a selfie, which I'm not typically a fan of, but felt it necessary to document, so excited to build a home for our family together, dreams coming true and feeling so very fortunate and blessed right here! Excited to share more of this journey with you all as roof is on and windows going in this week! :o)

Sunday, April 10, 2016

Hello Spring...So Good to See You!

Its been awhile. Whether you're stopping by for the first or you've been missing my craftiness and random antics regarding diabetes, welcome! Life has been beyond hectic, and while I know my world is no crazier than anyone else's, I must admit I have never experienced as much chaos all at once as I have been the last several months...all good stuff but all at once. This has made me question if it is possible to have too much goodness going on at the same time? While I'd like to think not, based on my recent personal whirlwind, I think it is very real and I will from here on out sincerely appreciate when I can say nothing is new, boring sounds extremely thrilling to me! :) Enough about my personal and joyful chaos of a new, fulfilling career, building a new house, and two daughters that are very involved and growing up all too quickly...lets get to some crafty goodness, one thing I've been missing with all the chaos and hope to make more time for very soon!
While we build our house we are living in my parents' villa, very appreciative to have a place to call home but 2 bedrooms with a hubby, two tween daughters and two labs is a bit tight which explains my lack of crafting. Excuse the mess in my picture but it was just fun to dump it all on the dining table and create! 
First up, I made lots of these for our sweet nanny from a few summers back who is expecting her first baby very soon. Love the giraffe stamp from Papertrey Ink and the chevron cover plate, too. I always love giving thank your with envelopes that have postage on them to the expecting mom because it's one less thing she has to think about, getting thank yous sent for all the sweet gifts she's showered with during this magical time, and are always a great gift!

And next up, I've been wanting this alpaca stamp from Lawn Fawn since it was released several months back but with selling a house and moving to temporary housing I forgot about it and then it was sold out forever so I know spring is here but I just had to play with this one since I just got it! Simple card and love the new plaid paper from Lawn Fawn, excited to do more with those papers in my new craft space!
It just makes me smile! :) So that's it for now...thanks for stopping by and I really do hope to get posting here more as life settles back to a new sort of routine. Now excuse me while I get back to watching my daughters compete at their dance competition, they had a break between sessions which gave me the time to write this long overdue post! So blessed with my joyful chaos! Hope you are, too! 

Thursday, December 24, 2015

12 Days of Crafty Christmas: Day 10 & 11

Thinking if I do this next year I'll start my 12 days early so they don't actually fall on the busiest days of the season! :) Eric's sister was in town and a hotel with pool plus all the Breidenbach cousins equals getting home late! I should've known. But I've got a fun idea if you're a pallet lover...something I created this summer and hadn't had a chance to put on the blog so here is a Christmas tree for putting up outside and safer than hanging lights on your roofline! :)

I painted the pallet with a red stain the my neighbor, Amy, discovered this summer. Stain comes in lots of colors and the gray is something I'd love to try with a future wood project! Next I used scrap paper to literally build my tree, layering them until it was visually what I liked and spray painted it with a vibrant green. This was my favorite part of the project...

I added a star and paited a tree trunk. You could string with lights for your front porch or hang actual ornaments, so many possibilities! Sorry I don't have a picture of it on my porch but with a house for sale we've gotten rid of or given a lot to tidy up and this was on the given list. Can't wait to start crafting in our new home next summer! :)

Merry Christmas to you and your family! I hope your Eve is filled with joy and a heart full of gratitude! I am feeling especially nostalgic with this being our last holiday in this house and so many memories and blessings here!

Tuesday, December 22, 2015

12 Days of Crafty Christmas: Day 9

Vacation officially begins tomorrow for me which is why it's almost midnight and I'm finally posting day 9! Girls are out of school and I'm off until the new year, just a few additional reasons why this is indeed the most wonderful time of the year!

We're building a home this spring and in the process of moving I've discovered several of our family Christmas cards from years past and thought it would be such a great layout!

So, here it is

Another one for the books! So fun to look back and especially see how the girls have grown! Such fun memories, so glad I found these while packing! Tomorrow the girls and I will be in the kitchen all day creating lots of edible goodness.

Monday, December 21, 2015

12 Days of Craft Christmas: Day 8

Girls are out of school tomorrow and I'm done with work, too! So excited for this holiday break yet hard to believe it's finally here! Lots yet to do so playing catch up and sharing a book I do every year to save all the beautiful cards we get from friends, family, and coworkers!
All you need is some binder rings, hole punch, cardboard scraps, ruler, and sharp cutting tool to create your book and then have fun adding all those treasured cards and handwritten notes to keep for looking back at as years go by. To see my original post and full detailed instructions, check it out here
Hope you're getting all those last minute holiday items and to dos checked off your list!