Whoa! That was close!

A follow up to my las Vlog about my skin reaction to my new drugs.

I called my doctor on Friday and explained all the problems with my skin, night sweats, etc. As part of the neurological team of specialists working with me, I have never experienced a doctor, let alone a specialist, drop everything to get on a 3-way call with his nurse and me to instruct me to reduce my meds immediately. It’s pretty scary since I’ve been on these meds for a year!

I was in the early stages of Stevens-Johnson syndrome and basically was chemically burning from the inside out and my organs were starting to shut down.. in a nutshell I was dying and days away from being hospitalized. The syndrome would’ve meant I would’ve been treated in the intensive care burn unit and would take months to recover! I describe the rash pain like when you scrape your knee, for example, it starts to heal but is tender to touch during the process. It’s the same feeling only the pain is from under the skin. It’s the weirdest thing. The human body is amazingly resilient and efficient. It was trying to get rid of all this chemical crap that was in my system.

The trick to this whole MS disease is the delicate balance of medication which changes and can easily be thrown out of whack. The hard part is that as soon as I feel good I don’t want that feeling to go away despite the side effects. I guess my balance has to be found in not enduring through the side effects. I’m not much of a complainer, but I’m gonna have to start writing some issues down.

Travel and events in the next year are already in full swing, contracts signed, staff to hire, etc. I need to be in medical healthy balance now more than ever! I hope this is the last hurdle I have to jump through.

I would say that’d be my Christmas miracle this year. Being with my whole family for the holidays has been awesome despite my medical scare. My family has completely fallen into abundance. Being around friends who share the same core values, interests and enjoy a good game of cards or pool 🎱 has been so fun. I’ve seen a whole different side of Canada and I’m going to see even more in the new year. I will definitely share that here.

Hope everyone is having a great week! Stay healthy, listen to your gut feelings and always love yourself and your life! Take care my friends ❤️

SS

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Getting more creative

I’ve been sick lately which has forced me to slow down on a few time sensitive things such as poster and media, designs, target dates.. it was getting to be a bit much. I guess this cold is somewhat of a double edged sword.

I get a lot of questions about my dolls. I used to be really stand-off-ish with everyone because I really wasn’t confident in my work. Like most artists I know we are our own worst critic but it wasn’t until the last 3 years that I finally let go and embraced what I’ve learned and continue to learn about my craft.

For the next part of my journey I’ve decided to get a little more artsy fartsy. Now this won’t be just a road of making and selling dolls, I’ll be documenting more if my personal journey as an artist. So let’s begin tonight.

It’s 1:43am and I’m waiting for the paint to dry while watching Netflix on my iPad. The house is nice and quiet and there’s only one light coming from my desk lamp. It actually reminds me of my childhood. When I was in either grade 1 or 2, I loved the Disney version of Pinocchio. There was a picture of Geppetto working in his workshop at night looking up at the sky wishing for Pinocchio. Haha I guess it’s eerily very similar. This took s very strange turn. Maybe it’s the paint fumes 🤷🏻‍♀️

More soon!SS

Feeling comfortable

I can’t say how happy I am to finally be able to enjoy my artwork. I love what I do! I’ve been slowly building my doll collection, yes I’m probably going to be one of those women with a bunch of dolls. I did promise myself to not get crazy and go over 10 dolls in the entire house… ok well, I promised my boys.

It’s the beginning of the Christmas season and I can already hear the sound of crunch time. I have a few dolls to make before Christmas and few of my own I want to complete.

A couple of events happened over the last couple months that would’ve left me jaded about 5 years ago, but today is a very different day. I felt validated and self assured that I am on the right path. It’s funny what they say. When you feel adversity or opposition from others, it says a lot more about them than it does about you. I’ve learned that you do choose your future and things may look bleak but it must look that way temporarily in order to achieve what you deserve. 2018 is coming up fast and I am extremely excited! There will be lots of meetings, planning, coordinating, but my goal is worth it!

Let the Christmas songs, sweaters and Santa pictures begin! 🎄

Therapy for healing

The first time I saw a reborn doll I instantly fell in love. As a doll lover I was so intrigued at how artists could express their own vision for each doll kit. Here’s my story:

In 2010, my whole world crashed, I went into the hospital expecting a quick fix instead, I was admitted immediately and fought for my life for 5 weeks away from all my family and friends. After those long weeks of not knowing, I was finally diagnosed with Multiple Sclerosis. That wasn’t the worst part, my neurologists, specialists and physicians informed me that I was no longer able to return to work, I had physical limitations, mental limitations and I would only get worse… oh, and that there’s no cure.

As a mother of 6 children, a wife, a sister and a daughter; giving up was not even a thought in my mind. However, I also knew I was going to go bananas if I didn’t have anything to do during the times when I would be bedridden. That’s when I thought about the reborn doll that my mother in law showed me. I, admittedly, became obsessive over every bit of the reborn doll process. I watched documentaries, read articles and spent hours self teaching, practicing painting and hair rooting. Working on reborn dolls became, and still is, my therapy.

I introduced the world of reborning dolls to my friend in New York. She loved my dolls so much and was so intrigued by them I decided to send her 2 of my reborn dolls, 1 for her and 1 for her mother who suffers from dementia. I knew about the therapy values of these dolls but nothing prepared me for the video chat from my friend showing me her mother’s reactions. Her eyes lit up and to this day, she holds and changes her babydoll every day. It was transforming for me.

A few months later, I was contacted by many who were curious about the dolls. One woman in particular reached out to me about her story and how she suffers from PTSD. We developed a bond and I put all me heart into a doll for her. Once her babydoll arrived, she sent me pictures of her family holding the doll and they were all crying with happiness, yes that included her husband. My husband and I were moved to tears. In that moment I knew the power of healing that these dolls have. My therapy can now help others and that is my goal for as long as I can create these works of art.

The first time I stepped into MacPherson’s I was speechless. It is an artist’s and doll collector’s dream! On my first visit I was lucky enough to have met Brenda. She is one of the most positive people I have ever met and her staff is equally friendly and sweet. As an artist, being able to physically look at and touch the different kits is invaluable to my reborning process.

I look forward to any chance I get to visit the store in St Marys which is only a 45 minutes away from my city.

Dear artists, this is a remarkable community and with the help and encouragement from the MacPherson’s staff, you can go through your own processes with ease. You will always be welcomed with open arms.

MacPherson’s always signs off with a “Have a beautiful day” and every time I visit, I do indeed have a beautiful day.

Thank you, Brenda and your wonderful staff for all your support for me and many other reborn artists, you are all beautiful inside and out.

What I’ve been watching

I’ve been watching “The Super” on Netflix. I didn’t even know this series existed. I am completely addicted to it!

It shows the day to day life of a property manager and it’s great!

There was a time in my entrepreneurial dreams that I wanted to buy an apartment, after watching a few episodes of this series, I’m not gonna ✋🏼

If you have Netflix watch it!

You won’t be disappointed 😊❤️

My Happy Place

I’ve been going to my “Happy Place” almost every weekend and I fall more and more in love with it. It’s one thing to support my art, but it’s another thing to receive the equal, if not more, support I have had lately.

My dolls are on display at MacPherson Arts & Crafts and I’m so excited!

I can’t explain how happy I’ve been too! My customers have given me amazing feedback and it’s such a gratuitous feeling to know that my art is helping people.

I’ve also seen many new artists’ work and children to adults are very intrigued by what I do. Yes, I am excited about the talent that has emerged from the love of baby dolls. As a Canadian woman, the joy of being able to go to a physical store that is the largest brick and mortar store in North America is something to be proud of. Every time I go to it I feel like a kid in a candy store!

I can look at any doll kit, supplies, clothes, etc all in one day. In this world of online shopping it’s such a relief that it is possible to shop and physically know what I’m buying. Since I’m very impatient it also makes getting the things I need instantly. I don’t have to wait for my order and stalk my tracking numbers.

It’s nice to know that my Happy Place is just around the corner.

I’ve made some vlogs lately so check them out on my YouTube channel so you can see the what the store looks like.

I love it so much!

Vlog #15 Doll Central

Is this Fall?

This year’s Fall has been really strange. It is starting to get cooler but it hasn’t been at the regular temperatures for this time of year. The leaves on most of the trees are still green with only sporadic changing leaves on the trees outside the city and into the beautiful farm lands.

I’ve been having lots of action with regard to my more frequent travels to my favourite craft store. Not only is my destination to MacPerson Arts & Crafts equivalent to my “Disneyland” but the drive to St. Mary’s is absolutely beautiful! The quiet countryside is so filled with nature. With Turkey vultures circling over crops and wooded areas it’s so nice to watch them glide overhead, even though I know they are searching for their next meal.

I’m so in love with my travels on the back roads and the hidden dirt roads. Just the sound of the tires crunching over gravel is somehow satisfying to hear.

I’m in the middle of projects, custom orders and events. I can feel that I’m just about to get crazy busy with Christmas holidays approaching. I’m ready to get working.

Great adventures are continuing to get some momentum. This is where I do the best work, on crunch time with a pile of work to do.

Is it weird that I actually like to be swamped with work? 🤔

More soon!

SS