Friday, May 30, 2008

I've been thinking a lot lately about FRIENDSHIP. Thinking specifically about struggling through making new friends, and celebrating old friends. Thanking God for the friends HE has blessed my life with, new and old. In this journey called life, friends truly are the flowers!! (hey, that sounds like a stamp.....) Last week, or gee, two weeks ago now, Gloria and Glenn came for a visit. My friendship with Gloria is an interesting story. Way way way back when I FIRST became a Stampin'Up demonstrator, Gloria's daughter Christy had my first workshop for me at Nyack College in NY. I had met Christy thru a mutual friend when she sold PSX stamps, (I was her best customer for a while there) and when I told her I was going with SU, she had just decided to stop selling PSX, so she said she would have my first workshop for me. I signed on( with a promise like that), so in a way I have Christy to thank for helping me make the decision to be a demonstrator!! :)Christy added on to her first workshop order with an order from her mom,(I can still hear Christy saying "I like to stamp, but my mother and sister, they are the ones that are really over the top with it....") Christy said her mom loved the catalog and would like to have a catalog workshop with her stamping friends......the rest is sort of history. Gloria has given my SU business a huge boost down thru the years....and all the while our friendship grew right along with her stamp collection. She always said to me, if you and Keith ever want to take a trip you should come on out here and have a live workshop for all these ladies that have been placing orders over the years. I talked to Keith about it and he thought it sounded like fun, (the only person I know who gets more excited about a road trip then my husband is my dog......:):):) So one year about 5 or 7 years ago, (who's counting?) we went to Orrville, OH, and had a wonderful workshop and met the gang and we've gone back every year since.......hey - I forgot to say, that card that we just passed is me giving Gloria a lesson in watercoloring with markers, and hers came out beeeuuuutiful too!! :) Keith and Glenn have become friends over the years too, and it's just one of the many friendships that SU has blessed my life with down thru the years. Here you will see Gloria and I feverishly stamping the hours away......she arrived at just before 2:00 pm and we didn't stop stamping until 2:00 am!! Well, of course we stopped long enough to eat, but honestly that was it. At 2:00 a.m., we called it a night. We made lots of cool cards but I have shown my 3 favorite ones that we made here.....Gloria is a card machine, she stamps in a moving car, she stamps in her sleep, she stamps like 25 of any card she likes and the thing that makes Gloria different from me is SHE actually SENDS cards to people......you know, like puts a stamp on them and puts them in the mail....she doesn't hoard them in a basket like me. :) I am sure there are people all over OHIO and beyond that are blessed regularly by the cards Gloria makes and more importantly, sends. : ) My hero. :) Going to Gloria's house is awesome too, she and Glenn have a little apartment off of their home and she always has all kinds of little presents and my favorite candy and fruit and muffins.....I look so forward to my visits there which happen at least once a year. Which takes me to "THE REST OF THE GANG" but honestly, Gloria's workshops always have about 40 people ~ but here is a small sampling of the ones I have grown to know and love, below. These ladies have always been like a shot in the arm to me, they sort of swarm around my samples and ooohhhh and ahhhhh.......and I always go away feeling like a star. :) If I ever felt discouraged in my business with Stampin'UP I could just think of this group of ladies and know that in a small corner of OHIO I have some serious stampers who love me. :):):) And honestly, I love them too. Of the ladies in this picture, I think most of them have been there each and every year, or close to it. From left to right in the back row - Anna Mae, Margo, Terry S, Terry and GLORIA, front row from left to right, Janet, Bev, and Judy....missing Joanne and Barbara.......So there is an example of the friendships we make a long the way. I told Gloria that her stamp group (these ladies, and 2 more who didn't make it the night the picture was taken) really need to come and have a stamping get away here in my town. I think we would have such a good time, I think we could have a shoebox swap and everyone design a card and we could have a stamping marathon.....or else I could just design a few and we could all make them together - as many of them as wanted to make the trip - we are going to do that one of these days for a weekend....right Gloria?? :) Anyway, I have just been thinking a lot about all the friendships that SU has brought my way, people I would have never known if not for becoming a demonstrator and sharing the JOY all these years of stamping with friends!! Okay, now I feel some usual blogger's frustration coming on because that card coming up is turned on it's side....and you know me being blog challenged I will never be able to get that card right side up in this life..... I needed to do that BEFORE I downloaded it to a blog....so help me out here folks and just bend your head over and take a gander at this one from the side.......it's not that bad......you get the idea, save me the untold hours of frustration figuring out how to turn that card right side up, it's ain't happenin folks, lets face it......but hey - it was the special one I was sending out there to all my friends, new and old, saying I miss you......and I do. OKAY - I HAD TO DO IT - I TRIED AND TRIED TO TURN THAT CARD RIGHT SIDE UP AND POOF!! IT WAS GONE, IT JUST TOTALLY DISAPPEARED, SO AFTER I POST THIS I WILL GO BACK AND ADD IT.....GEEZ I DESERVE THE BLOGGER OF THE YEAR AWARD - ME BLOGGING IS LIKE A 5 YEAR OLD DRIVING A CAR.....BRAVE BUT STUPID..........I JUST DONT' GET IT AND I NEVER WILL BUT IT'S SO MUCH FUN I CAN'T STOP......ANYWAY- IMAGINE A CARD HERE THAT SAYS MISSING YOU,,,,,AND THEN YOU CAN SEE IT LATER......ARGHHHHHH.... I was just saying to Keith though that after 2 years now living in OHIO, (can you believe it's been 2 years already?) I finally honestly feel like I am making some friends - and what a great feeling. Not all friendships are deep friendships, tonite I made two new friends in Kroegers, and I don't think we'll ever be that close.....it never ceases to amaze me how fast SOME people around here want to make friends, the lady in front of me in line in five minutes told me things along the lines of, "when my first husband left me he left me with nothing, no money, no job, no house.....and that's when I started smoking.....and now I have a wonderful fiance but I can't quit smoking......yadayadayada.....AND i was like, "Uh gee, I'm sorry to hear that.......while MEANWHILE, the lady behind me and I kid you not, with sort a a wild and crazy look in her eyes she said, ( and she was at the very LEAST 70 years old or so) "I don't care how handsome the next man is that looks my way and what he promises me, men are just trouble.....I had two husbands and I wouldn't give a plug nickel to have either one of them back again......in fact, the first one, I often contemplated killing with a kitchen knife....." and I was like Uh, gee, I'm sorry to hear that......(I am NOT MAKING THIS UP.....)So you can see that being a cold NEW YORKER and being dropped into the middle of friendly OHIO, I have had to be discerning and make friends slowly, but I am here to tell you it's happening.....and I am so happy!! I have some new friends from Curves, some new friends from church, and my new friend Michelle Zindorf, who I spent another Saturday stamping with and that's what my NEXT blog entry will be about......and none of these people hate men, or talk about murder to me in the grocery store.....they are nice sane folks. :) And I am just thinking that for at least a year I mourned the friendships I left behind.....and felt this sad heaviness that we left behind a history with people that we may not have enough life left to build that deeply again, and then you spend a Sunday afternoon chatting with a friend from church and you really feel a connection, and you think, maybe it won't take 10 years.....and then last Saturday, spent with Michelle, laughing and talking non stop all day and not wanting her to go home......and thinking wow, it feels like I've known her a lot longer then a month......God is good, and HE knows what we need and when we need it and then HE gives it to us. :) I can think about Convention coming up in the end of July and all the bestest friends I will get to reconnect with - it's true, Friends are the flowers in the garden of life, and ALL that good stuff!! Corny, but oh so true. What would we do without friends? Thanks God for all the friends, new and old and everything in between that you have so abundantly blessed my life with!! :) Come see us again Glenn and Gloria!! Bring those ladies Gloria!! :)

2 comments:

Michelle Zindorf said...

Ok, it like took me an hour to read your post, lol. I loved reading every single word! I guess I left early when I came to stamp. 2 a.m. party animals I tell ya! So glad you had a wonderful time.
Hugs!

Shirley said...

How precious, Karen. I love what you did with the flowers too.