Sunday, March 24, 2013

Stash it Sunday ~ Week 12


Welcome to Stash it Sunday!!! 



Last week I had mentioned how much I like textured print fabrics. Well I found another collection that I would place in that category and I am head over heals in love with this next collection. Once again lets give a warm welcome to our favorite fabric shop.


 

Here is Happy Tones  by Michael Miller Fabrics!!!!  Between the polka dots and the stripes to the floral and the geometric designs. Not to mention the beautiful springtime colorway. Seriously what is not to love!! This is going to be a must have in my stash collection for this spring!!


 If you haven't had the pleasure then make sure you stop in and see all the amazing collections that Fat Quarter Shop has to offer. The site is neatly organized so you can find exactly the style of fabric you are looking for.


 The Fat quarter shop can be found on Facebook and you can also follow them on their blog page - The Jolly Jabber -

I always love to hear from my readers so why don't you let me know what you would do with this collection if it was in your stash.....
Happy Stashing,


Stephanie

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Stash it Sunday ~ Week 11


Welcome to Stash it Sunday!!! Well Wednesday I guess (HAHA)

So I was picking out fabric for this coming Sundays stash it post I came to realize that I had accidentally skipped a week when scheduling out my post. So without further ado here is what was supposed to be this last Sundays Stash it Sunday Post. 
I am a texture kind of girl. If you would look around my home I have all sorts of textures everywhere. I even like adding textures to my digital designs just to give it that extra depth type feel to them. So when I saw this collection I just knew I had to share it with you. Once again we had taken a virtual trip over to our lovely sponsor


 

Textures by Angela Walters for Art Gallery Fabrics is a prime example of  adding fabulous textures on any of your sewing creations. Let alone the colors are just screaming early spring to me. I think  using any of the panels from this collection would definitely make an amazing bag this season. Between the hard lines and the beautiful swirls whats not to love!



 If you haven't had the pleasure then make sure you stop in and see all the amazing collections that Fat Quarter Shop has to offer. The site is neatly organized so you can find exactly the style of fabric you are looking for.


 The Fat quarter shop can be found on Facebook and you can also follow them on their blog page - The Jolly Jabber -

I always love to hear from my readers so why don't you let me know what you would do with this collection if it was in your stash.....
Happy Stashing,


Stephanie

Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Living a crafting dream........




Today I am living my crafting dream..... However when I met my Husband 7 years ago I would have never imagined this would be our lives today. We were 2 very healthy(for the most part) and active people. We LOVED to be outdoors. Between my love for photography and the outdoors, our dream was to become a couple that would travel the world taking pictures of all the beautiful landscapes, plants and animals. In my mind I really wanted to work for National Geographic or something awesome like that. (HAHA) We can all dream can't we?!?!

Jason and I knew almost immediately that we wanted to get married. And really wasted no time starting our lives together. We got pregnant and married within our first 2 years so it was pretty busy with all the extra planning going on.




 The pregnancy did not go quite as planned though. Morning sickness had set in, however my morning sickness lasted literally from the time I woke up till I went to bed, and even then I would wake up in the middle of the night some nights and get sick. I know that I am not the only one this has happened to but this was the first major signs when we look back at things now. Almost immediately the Dr's put me on zofran to try and minimize the nausea. This so called "Morning sickness lasted all the way to my delivery date. Other than that I also had some nasty GI complications during the pregnancy. I had gained a total of 18lbs during the pregnancy most of that being the last 2 months and was hospitalized a dozen times before my delivery date.  Despite everything I was able to deliver a healthy 5LB 8 OZ little boy.



For about a year and a half I was able to get most of my health back to where I could manage it for the most part. However in the summer of 2010 after a few minor accidents things took a turn for the worse. By Dec of 2010 they diagnosed me with degenerative disk disease and my T6-T11 vertebrates were completely desiccated. At this point I was also being treated for a severe migraine that was so bad I had to wear sunglasses to even look at a TV screen. They even did an occipital nerve blocker through the back of my skull to try and relieve the migraine but not even that worked.  However the migraine and the mixture of medications made it impossible to manage what we thought at the time was major acid reflux. However it wasn't until after I had the endoscopy that they realized that the problems were much worse. I was than diagnosed with Barrett's Esophagus and shortly after CVS( Cyclic Vomiting Syndrome). Because this had all gone untreated for so long along with all the mixtures of other medications I was throwing up anywhere from 15-30 times a day. Within in 6 short months I had lost almost 40lbs. (this being one of the scariest moments of my life) I felt like I literally wasting away.

So after 2 years of trying different meds they were finally able to find a combination that is starting to help at least regulate the CVS. As there is no cure for it they have been known to at least regulate it so that I may only have 3-5 cycles per year instead of every few weeks like they are now. HOWEVER this is much improvement from every 5 days. About a year ago we noticed I would have problems when I would get up to fast or even if I turn my head while I am walking that I would just drop to the ground and black out. Other things like over heating with very little sun exposure and a couple other issues. Once again I went though a line of testing and added a neurologist to my growing team of doctors. Recently they had given me my diagnoses. I have what is called dysautonomia (aka autonomic dysfunction).

 The autonomic nervous system regulates unconscious body functions, including heart rate, blood pressure, temperature regulation, gastrointestinal secretion, and metabolic and endocrine responses to stress such as the "fight or flight" syndrome. As regulating these functions involves various and multiple organ systems, dysfunctions of the autonomic nervous systems encompass various and multiple disorders.

With the Dysautonomia basically fueling the fire for the CVS it makes for a harder battle to get better just on a daily basis. I have seen improvement since starting all the meds. However 9 meds a day to just manage all this can get exhausting sometimes. 

But that brings us to today. I still have not gained any of the weight back. I am 6 lbs away from having to have the feeding tube talk. The Dr's said that they might have to bypass my stomach for awhile to give it a break. I have to be honest that part actually scares me. So I fight every day to try and never let it get to that point. 

Because of all the meds and certain medical issues I can't drive anymore which mean I could not go back to work, however I don't know anyone that would hire me when I can't be a dependable person not knowing from one day to the next if I am even going to be able to move to get out of bed that day. The doctors have told me that I will be disabled the rest of my life and will most likely be 100% wheel chair bound within 20 years or less. 

So after being diagnosed and sitting around for about 6 months playing the woe is me card, we were in a new home and had no family living with us anymore for me to see or talk to on a daily basis. I decided to pick myself up one day and started doing some crafting.  We were going to be having our first Christmas in the house that year and it was also the last year my son would be home as he would be starting school that next fall.  I was searching for kids Christmas crafts when  I started seeing these blogs and I started reading them. I was just amazed and that's when I decided that I too wanted to share my life experiences and the fun projects that I did with my family. That is when I created Smalltown Dreamz. 

This was one thing I always wanted to blog about,  but could never find the words. I love my readers and would never want to alienate them with (Sick Talk). However recently I have found out about a local family and their 4 year old daughter was diagnosed with CVS and the parents were going nuts trying to find answers. Unfortunately for whatever reason they didn't want to hear from anyone that wasn't a medical profession but a friend of the family had reached out to me for questions and advice to maybe pass on.

That is when I realized that I must use the power of the blog to get the word out. It is so important to have support and people you can talk to that might be going through something similar. Most of my disease is something that from the outside looking in (other than the fact that I look like a skeleton and wheel chair bound for things like grocery shopping and our family hikes) Most people would not even know I was sick. Because of this I have lost friends who for whatever reason thought I was faking, or some didn't know how to handle it so they stopped talking to me. When you are in these types of situations you need an outlet or a group. Something you can do or someone you can talk to, anything to keep your mind off  the negative and always try to think about the positive. Today I am living my crafting dream........




Throughout my journey I will share the ups and downs in hopes that I can help others with a similar problem understand that they are not alone and that there are people out there that understand. 

If you or someone you love has an illness that is debilitating and you ever just need someone to listen always know that I am just an email away. 

Without my faith, family and friends to have been here to support me through all this I don't know if I would be as strong as I am today and for that I will always be grateful!

Stephanie

Sunday, March 10, 2013

Stash it Sunday ~ Week 10


Welcome to Stash it Sunday!!!



It is March and that means a few things, March Madness, St. Patrick's Day, Easter even falls in March this year. Oh and it will be my Birthday at the end of the month. So for the next couple weeks we are going to see some FUN Collections. First on the list let's stop by our Favorite Fabric Shop.


 

Geekly Chic by Riley Blake Designs is a CRAZY, NEAT, RETRO and just AMAZING Collection. It brings any 80's kid right back to their childhood.  Between the print on the fabric to the colors it's just RAD. I would love this collection to make an TOTALLY RADICAL Lap quilt for taking to the beach and other AWESOME functions. 

Geekly Chic Fat Quarter Bundle Riley Blake Designs - Fat Quarter Shop


 If you haven't had the pleasure of seeing all the amazing collections that Fat Quarter Shop has to offer than you really must take a peak. The site is neatly organized so you can find exactly the style of fabric you are looking for.


 The Fat quarter shop can be found on Facebook and you can also follow them on their blog page - The Jolly Jabber -

I always love to hear from my readers so why don't you let me know what you would do with this collection if it was in your stash.....
Happy Stashing,

Stephanie

Friday, March 8, 2013

Cloudy Day Pattern Release



At the start of the new year my pattern designing world took a bit of a turn. My little man was learning about weather and similar things of that nature in his class and would come home telling us what type of day it was outside so I wanted in on the fun too. I wanted to make him some weather appliques that I am currently turning into applique magnets for the fridge. The idea is so that he could place what type of day it is on the refrigerator to let us know how we should dress ourselves before we go outside.

Every morning he checks out the window to see if its sunny, cloudy, stormy, snowy, etc... and tells us what jacket he will need or if he will need boots that day. Even though it is fun for him I am happy because he is still learning something in the process. I am going to start another learning game with him at night before he goes to bed and let him play weatherman by predicting the next days forecast.

I still have a few more appliques to add to this series I have to say I really enjoyed making these and look forward to finishing the rest of them.


You can find this pattern for sale in all 3 of my pattern shops. 


I also want to give a big thank you to Crystalized Designs for her beautiful work up of the pattern. 

Here are a couple images of other pattern in the series. 





Also make sure you check our Facebook Fan Page for exclusive sales and Giveaways




Happy Crafting

Stephanie





Sunday, March 3, 2013

Stash it Sunday ~ Week 9

Welcome to Stash it Sunday



Recently I ordered a Fat Quarter Bundle and I have just been dying to share it with you all. The minute Natasha posted this I knew I just had to have it and wouldn't you know 10 minutes later I had paid my invoice and patiently waited for the weekend to fly by so I could start checking the mail in excitement for it's arrival! I picked up this bundle from






This collection is called St. Patrick's Day by Ann Kelle. Isn't it just YUMMY!!! I can't even wait to figure out what I am going to do with this. I love this collection so much that I would love to figure out a way to coordinate it with some cool wall hanging craft projects. In my opinion, this is one of those collections that could be showcased year round!

Added to stash Fat Quarter Bundle    St. Patrick's Day

I am such a fan of polka dots and Chevron. I think I may just save this and wait till I can find some more awesome collections to go with this. I think having a quilt with my favorite patterns would be AMAZING!!!

Have you stopped in at Skye Reve Fabrics lately if not Natasha always has great deals and amazing shipping prices. You can also hear about her great deals and offers on her Facebook Page. Free Fabric Friday is just one awesome deals that she does for her readers. I have been fortunate enough to win that once so make sure you go fan her you could be next.

I always love to hear from my readers so why don't you let me know what you would do with this collection if it was in your stash.....



Happy Stashing

Stephanie

Saturday, March 2, 2013

A New Adventure



It is hard to believe that just a little over a year ago Smalltown Dreamz was nothing more than an idea floating around in my head. There have been many changes over this past year as we have grown and with now reaching to over 1000 Facebook fans it is time that we grow a little more.

Smalltown Dreamz is now part of the Mad Mad Makers Team From the website Mad Mad me. I can't even tell you how excited I am about this awesome opportunity. The Mad Mad Makers are an amazing group of ladies that make and sell their handmade items. You can find this network of shops in the Mad Mad Marketplace.



I never knew you could fit so much talent in one spot. It truly is amazing to see all the beautiful items that everyone makes. If you are interested in finding out more information on how to join the Mad Mad Makers you can find more details here.




I have recently updated my ETSY Shop and will be adding new products all month long. Here is just a preview of what is new.





Thank you to everyone for all your love and support and I look forward to sharing more of my crafting adventures with you.


Happy Crafting
Stephanie