Welcome to the GROW YOUR BLOG party!!!
My Name is Cathy Ann but on here I go by Catie An. My husband calls me many nicknames; Katrinka, Katrina, Squeek, Cathy Ann, are a few. But the one most used is CatieAn.
I was born and raised in the Northwest part of the United States in Washington State. My husband and I still live in our home town. We have four distinct seasons. We are spoiled by mountains and lakes.
I have most of my information on my profile. I started my blog about 6 years ago.
Having been determined 'disabled' after a bad fall at work, subsequent surgery and therapies, and an unrelentless pain that started to spread around my body, I fell into a major depression. I loved my job as a pediatric critical care and oncology nurse, all of our kids had migrated to a larger city for job opportunities, were all married and starting their own families and John and all of are family and friends were still in the work force.
Even our neighbors were gone every day. I have worked since I was nine years old. For the first time in my life I was anchor less. I did not know what to do with myself. I went to physical therapy for two hours plus a day, three days a week for two years. We had a major house fire and were displaced for 7 months before we could move back in. John's brother died as did my father.
It was in the midst of all this upheaval, emotional and physical, when I fell into blog land quite by accident.
It changed my outlook. I started connecting with people who had similar interests. I found other 'artists' in all kinds of medias I didn't even know existed. I have met so many wonderful people. Many have Reflex Sympathetic Dystrophy(Chronic Regional Pain Syndrome) just like myself. Others were just looking for friends who held the same values and wanted to share their lives and their art.
I became focused on photography and wanting to take pictures to share my life. With the kids all living away, they could visit my blog and see what we, or mostly' what I was doing. My creativity started improving and I became more involved in making my art.
There have been a few long periods where blogging was not as important to me and going through major flares with my illness, I lost focus. Then I went to school for a year and had no time to blog. Now back to being home alone every day, I am back to blogging on a more regular basis. I know I need to connect with others throughout my day. I love to share my life and my ideas. Knowing someone out there is looking to connect as well, gives me something other than myself to focus on.
Through this blog party, I hope to meet and make lots of new kindred spirits around the world.
I love making assemblage art and like my 'stuff' to have that sweet quality about them. I made up this little sweetheart today as part of my give away to some lucky reader.
I made her from an old antiseptic powder tin, from the 1940's, a doll head from the 50's, a petticoat from a doll from the 50's, and various other miscellaneous parts. Her hands are fired porcelain that I found in a bag at the thrift store. Her shoes are plastic doll shoes and also came home from the thrift store. Her name is Antiseptic Annie.
I will probably make at least one other dolly to give away, as well. I also have a few packets of vintage Victorian ephemera and pieces of vintage quilts and various tidbits to send off to far flung places.
I love to laugh and have a great sense of humor. I will laugh the longest and loudest at myself. There is never a dull moment when you hang out with me. My husband and I went to the local mall about two miles from here two nights ago. We visited one store that we loved. When asked how long ago they had opened they looked at us and said " 8 months ago". Oops.
Me, I can tell you within a 20 miles radius, every thrift, salvage, or antique store and know exactly when they opened or closed. Forget the new outfit. Give me a bag of goodies that I can throw in a labeled drawer to pull out and use on that next creation.
I have my sweet kidlets that come once a week for art and crafts, baking, sewing, you name it. I would be terribly sad to give up my days with them. Just this week, one of them said. "when I grow up I am going to have art classes just like this in my house." Awwwww.....made me well up. even my youngest sister told me recently she wished she had had some place to go like mine after school.
I can't NOT have kids around. Since our own grandchildren live far away, we have adopted other kids through the years. Friends who had younger children welcomed us to their kids' sporting events when ours were off on their own as adults. We started going to the neighbor kids' sporting activities and now go to their school programs. John and I have often joked that people probably think we are crazy. "Hey can we come hang out at your kids' football game. We don't have any of our own near by to play with." Both of us champion children and think that no one can have too many people who love and support them.
Before my accident, I spent at least once a year or every two years going to third world countries on medical missions. I miss that most of all when I think of all I have had to give up due to my illness. I have to rethink what my life is about on a daily basis. I use a cane whenever I walk out of the house. Inside, I walk short distances so don't fear falling as much as when I have to walk farther and my leg doesn't always want to work.
Before John and I played racquetball three or more times a week and still played on jack and jill sports teams. I just started going back to the gym to swim as often as possible and do water aerobics. In the water, I can still make my body work like it used to.
My Faith, my Family and my Friends are the most important parts of my life. They keep me focused and steer me back on the right path when I find myself wandering. To know that friends in blog land are just a few typewritten words away has also made a difference in my life and my art.
I want to thank VICKI for hosting this wonderful party!! THANK YOU for all the time and effort you put into this event for all of us taking part. I hope it brings you as much joy as we are all anticipating.
I also want to shout out to Karen from Valentine Design for redoing my blog for this wonderful party! It was what I wanted as my birthday present and I can't think of a nicer one. You are so wonderful.