Tuesday, June 01, 2004

A Burden Shared...

It is hard to see anyone that you care about suffer and not be able to do much about it. Now that I am a parent, I understand how much my own parents sometimes set limits to keep me from being hurt. At the time, I thought they were being unfair. It is hard to watch a loved one battle a disease or illness and not be able to make them better somehow. It is hard to watch a friend go through trials and tribulations that make your teeth grind in anger and your heart ache. It is almost harder to watch another person’s pain than it is to experience it yourself... almost.

The creative person inside me always wants to try to find a solution or way of helping to make the problem better. The reality is that sometimes, the only way to help is in other small, indirect ways. A note, a hug, a word of support, an offer to share a meal. Tonight I may not be able to carry any of my friends’ burdens, but at least I can let them know that I am here. The perception that a burden is shared often helps to make it feel lighter, even if you know that you are still the one carrying it. I must go and reread that poem Footprints in the Sand...

Sunday, May 30, 2004

Web Site Updated At Last!!

It was a busy but productive weekend. I had a chance to speak to the Youth Forum of the Maritime Conference of the United Church in Sackville yesterday about “Living the Call”. I shared with them how there are many ways to use the gifts you have been given without necessarily being a minister. There were lots of other guests including a songwriter, so maybe we gave the young people who heard us some career ideas. I shared that you never know when you will be led down paths that you didn’t expect. Designing cross stitch was certainly never anything that I had ever dreamed about... and yet I couldn’t imagine my life right now without that, especially when a stitcher sends an e-mail sharing how much a certain design has touched their lives. I don’t think that will ever cease to amaze me. (I still keep thinking that I should be thanking them for stitching the crazy stuff my imagination comes up with!!)

Getting the website updated is also a MAJOR weight off my shoulders and wouldn’t have been possible without my girls playing so well together or Nick handling the dishes etc. Sometimes writing that HTML code from scratch can be really hard on my brain, but it gives me the results that I want and saves the money of paying someone else to do it!!

One of the reasons that the updates were so late is that I wasn’t sure what the final line up for COLUMBUS was going to be. A book deal deadline that got pushed back meant that one adorable release (the sequel to Winter Wonder called “To Trim A Tree”) will have to be pushed back until the fall. Having a huge order to fill for one distributor also meant that cash flow got messed up enough to prevent me from sending two other pieces out to model stitchers. When I looked at the logistics of paying them, framing costs and printing costs to release them for Columbus, it simply wasn’t possible to put them out now.

Luckily, Nick IS a faster stitcher than I am and got the first in our newest series “NO LATE KNIGHT SNACKING” ready in time. Many experts are saying that cross stitch is in a decline right now compared to other hobbies. The one thing I hope to do with this latest series that will be released as a single page leaflet to needlework stores or in kit format with lots of clear instructions and diagrams, is to reach fantasy people who may not be stitching yet and introduce them to this wonderful hobby I’ve gotten so addicted to. Each one in the series is designed to fit within a standard 5 x 7 inch fame, so hopefully they will be zany projects that are challenging enough to be addictive and yet not too complicated for beginning stitchers. We shall see!

Now that all the files are sent over to the website, I had best surface from my basement cavern and read some bedtime stories!!