One Day at a Time

As the Title states I am trying to take one day at a time. Some days are good and some not as good but in general I feel very lucky! I went through surgery 2 weeks ago and my emotions have certainly been on a roller coaster but I guess that is to be expected.

My surgery went well and everyone who took care of me was amazing from nurses, doctors, my husband and my mom. I spent one night in the hospital and then came home. I really don’t remember too much for those first 3 days except the doctor saying he got clear margins. I was so happy that the cancer was out and was thinking it was a slam dunk! Then I had a reaction to the adhesive or steri-strip that was placed over my incision.

reaction from adhesive and/or steri-strip


It was painful and annoying but not deadly. It cleared up after about a week of using the cortisone cream the doctor gave me. The next hurdle came during my follow up appointment with the surgeon, I learned that the cancer wasn’t just in my thyroid, it had gone into part of my trachea. Even though he was able to get to  healthy tissue and therefore get  clear margins, the news still kinda through me for a loop. I then knew for sure I would have to go through the radioactive iodine treatment to insure there was no other thyroid cancer cells elsewhere in my body.

After a week being housebound I was ready to get out in the public, my friend took me to my favorite store Target and I was able to get some scarfs to cover my scar for a while.

out in the real world


This is my first day out in public, I love my new scarf. Everyone has been so supportive and I can not even put into words how much it means to me. When I feel like having a “pity party” the support helps lift me up. Don’t get me wrong there have been a few days I have sat on the couch with a blanket over me dwelling on how and why this happened but there have only been a few.

I met with my Endocrinologist on Monday  she staged my cancer as Stage 2 and confirmed that I will need to have the radioactive iodine treatment but, I need to wait until my neck heals some more. The good news about that is I can wait to have my treatment until after Christmas.  I will have to be isolated from other people for a while so I am glad it will be after the Holidays. As I learn more about the treatment I will share. What I know so far is I will have to be on a very restrictive diet for 2 weeks before the treatment and after I am given the dose of radioactive iodine I will have to be isolated for 3-7 days. Everyone has been so sweet offering to make meals for the family, this is when we will really need the help so I may take you up on your offers!

There is a lot about cancer that does suck as people say but, I still say the best part of having cancer has been the HUGS! The love and support has been overwhelming and I thank you so much from the bottom of my heart!








Home Sweet Home

It’s been 3 days since my surgery and I’m home resting. I want to tell everyone THANK YOU for all of your support , love, prayers and hugs! It has helped me get through these past few days. My husband has been so great, even spending the night in the hospital with me. What would I do without all of this support?
This post will be short because I still feel like I’m going to doze off any minute but I wanted to say Thank You and share the initial pathology came back that the surgeon was able to get clean margins all the away around, so the cancer is out!!!! The rest of the pathology will take a little longer. I will sit down in the next few days and write a real post but wanted to get this “quickie post” out .
Please know every single note, hug, prayer, went a long way and I appreciate it all so much!!!!

A Quick Surgery Update (and Thank You) from the Daughter:

Hello Everyone!
This post is from me, Kaylee, Amy’s daughter. First, I’ll let you all know how her surgery went extremely well! While unfortunately I couldn’t get away from work and school to be up in Napa with her this morning, my amazing Dad, brother, and grandma were all there to keep me updated with text and phone calls. The doctors said her surgery went great and the best news of all is she can talk! Typically with these thyroid procedures, patients cannot talk afterwards, but my mom is talking normally. She is sleepy and has to stay overnight in the hospital, but so far everything is going great much to my relief! There are more updates to come, but the hardest part is over. And the best thing about my mom is that though she’s little on the outside, she has quite a bit of fight in her. It’s true, she really is one tough cookie!

I also wanted to take a moment to thank everyone who has continued to provide her and the rest of my family so much love and support in the wake of all this! Words can’t describe the fear and worry I felt when she told me about the cancer. I was able to keep my thoughts positive and my willpower strong just from the reassurance from not only my friends, but texts, notes, facebook posts, etc from all of my mom’s friends as well! It makes me so happy she has such a strong support system aside from her family. Seriously, from the bottom of my heart, I thank you so so SO much. I hope you’ll continue to keep her in your thoughts and prayers as she gets through complete recovery. Pass on my love to your family, friends and loved ones!

When Life Throws you a Curve Ball……

Well life has thrown me a large curve ball and I have never been much of a baseball player. I played as a West Park “Blackbird” in 3rd and 4th grade and in 2 years I never hit a ball. So what do you do at 46 years old, just when you think you have life pretty well figured out? I have 2 of 3 kids in College, 1 in 8th grade, a husband who after 22 years I am still totally in love with, great family and friends I feel very blessed, but now I am going to have to learn to hit curveballs.

On Thursday September 20th I got some news no one wants to hear. “Your biopsy has come back malignant, there is cancer.” I don’t remember much more of the phone conversation but Dr. Lee assured me that I could call her anytime with questions once I digested the news.

I will back up a bit to the beginning. In February I was visiting my general doctor about being tired all the time, when I asked about a lump I felt in my neck. He assured me it was probably nothing but combined with my fatigue I should go see Dr. Lee an Endocrinologist. I went to see her, she felt the lump in my neck, did an ultrasound and assured me a lot of people have nodules on their thyroid and never know it, so come back in 6 months and she would measure and check it again. When I left the office I made a 6 month appointment for Friday September 14. Now, I can’t tell you how many times with life being so busy I thought about postponing the appointment but for some reason I didn’t. This time during the ultrasound Dr. Lee felt concerned by the nodule’s growth, irregular borders and darkness. In her words “I just don’t like the way this looks I am going to do a biopsy.”  She did the biopsy right there in her office and then came one of the worst weeks, the week of waiting for the results.

I  learned I have Papillary Thyroid Cancer. Papillary is the most common form of Thyroid Cancer. The good news is it is one of the most curable forms of cancer. People have told me if you are going to have cancer this is the one to get. I think this makes me feel better?  I had some research to do and choices to make, that is what I have been working on mostly. I think it has been keeping my mind busy because up until Thursday I was doing pretty good. My surgery to remove my whole Thyroid and some Lymph Nodes is scheduled for this Monday. I will stay a night in the hospital. I decided to have the surgery done here in Napa at The Queen by a local Surgeon as opposed to going to UCSF. It was a very personal decision but I feel very good about it. So as I said I was cruising along until Thursday when my face broke out in a rash and then I have had a migraine for 2 days. So I might be more stressed on the inside than I appear to be on the outside. I was trying to think of a way to let the stress out and the thing that usually helps me the most is writing. I thought using my blog would be a great way to chronicle my journey and release some of the stress. I know they have “cancer blogs” but I already have this blog up and going, even though I haven’t posted since May, yikes, I miss it.

So as of right now I am scheduled for Surgery at 12:15 Monday. I am nervous about the whole anesthesia thing but I will get through it. They will start giving me synthetic Thyroid meds right away. My next step after healing from the surgery will be radioactive iodine treatment, more to come on that as it gets closer and I learn about it.  The good news is I will only be off of work 10-14 days after surgery, being self-employed I was worried about that also.

To close I have to say the worst part about getting cancer is the fear of the unknown….. the best part of getting cancer is all of the hugs I have gotten!

Thank You




working on a BIG project

Hi everyone…..

Sorry it’s been a while. My life has been crazy as usual but then I jumped on the super crazy train! I talked my husband into doing what I thought would be a “little project” but turned into a BIG project. Let’s just say in involved a trip to Ikea Sacramento, putting together 6 pieces of Ikea furniture, painting the furniture and the walls, then trimming out the furniture all since Saturday morning. I can thankfully say I am not divorced as of tonight but I can say I wouldn’t blame him. This morning my whole body hurt so bad I wanted to divorce myself! Pictures and a BIG post are coming soon but tonight I am going to drag myself upstairs, into a hot bath then into my nice soft bed. Which reminds my the sheets are in the dryer so I better go make it first. What were you up to this weekend??? I hope something relaxing so I can be jealous.

I never promised you an herb garden…

Hi Y’all (sometimes I like to pretend I am from the south)

I hope you had some amazing weather this weekend like we did here in Napa Valley! My weekend was busy, but very rewarding. I helped at Ky’s school Gala, it was awesome and very successful. Today, I worked this morning on one of my favorite clients who now lives in San Francisco. She went from being long and brunette to being a beautiful blonde ( sorry I am a little prejudiced) with shoulder length hair.  Then I came home and painted 4 projects and a few other things. I will have a lot to share this week! The front porch is getting a spring/summer makeover and here is a little preview.

Teal/Lime green and cream planter

I re-purposed 2 of out old terracotta pots and painted them with some spray paint and used lots of blue painters tape for the stripes. Well speaking of re-purposed now onto the feature presentation.

Our fun and sweet neighbors invited  us over for dinner the other night and I caught one glimpse of the new edition to their backyard and fell in LOVE!!! Seriously I wanted to steal it kinda love. It was an herb garden, but not just any herb garden. Les had re-purposed old barn wood and fence boards to create this masterpiece.

Re-Purposed Barn Wood Herb Garden

Isn’t so cool! Rustic but cool!

Thyme 2

Herb Garden view 2

It is right outside their kitchen door, a perfect place for easy harvesting while cooking. He promises me it is easy to make…. and he will make me one so that is why I am singing “you never promised me a rose herb garden” but he did. This story is to be continued when I have pics of my new Herb Garden.

Les's herb garden

Have a happy Monday, and you will be hearing more from me soon!

Take Care


The Twin Tables

I have been working on these two side table/ nightstands for about a week. I purchased them at a local Goodwill store. I loved the clean lines, dove tailed drawers and sturdy build. I also happened to love they were built in Australia

Twin tables inside drawer


I was lucky because “love” was very inexpensive at The Goodwill Store this day! So I decided to bring them home. I painted them with Annie Sloan Chalk Paint in Old White that I purchased from one of my favorite stores Roost. With help from Kaylee I painted and sanded them. After that, I waxed them with clear and dark wax to a beautiful sheen. I added beautiful glass prism pulls with an antique accent piece from another find.

What do you think?



Twin Tables after

Close up

my favorite helper

After Twin Tables

after: tabletop with flowers

After: tabletop with flower

Please leave me comments, what do you think? What else would you like to see?

Tip Junkie handmade projects

Home Stories A2Z

Home Stories A2Z

Furniture Feature Fridays

The Shabby Nest

For the love of Pintrest

We had a fun little family get together for Sis’s birthday on Sunday. So in honor of Kaylee and our love for Pintrest we decided to bake a cake. Not just any cake, but a beautiful ombre cake we spied on Pintrest. Our inspiration was this cake.

Beautiful inspitation cake from

Pintrest inspiration cake


Well after a lot of effort and a lot little help from my friend Debbye we created this masterpiece

Ombre Birthday Cake for Kaylee

Blue Ombre Cake



It was not only pretty but it tasted so yummy!

Here are a few more pictures of our fun day:

Safeway carnations Ombre Style


Beautiful BFF's

It was a great day and really fun to have girls back in the house.

Are you obsessed with Pintrest too? Do you love all things ombre from hair to decor? Has anyone else started searching Pintrest and found themselves at 1:00 a.m. having lost all track of time or is it just me? I just can’t get enough!

Happy Spring



Spring is in the …

Hi Everyone

I have taken a couple of weeks off of blogging because my life has been CRAZY   a little busy. I have wanted to sit down at one point almost every day but time would disappear. Do you know what I am talking about? Even at almost 20 (sis is a birthday girl on Friday the big 2-0) 18 and 13 the kids still keep me hopping.

Speaking of hopping it is almost Easter. I have had some spring decor up for a while and have slowly been adding to it. So even though outside is gray and rainy I have a little sunshine in my house.

Spring on the buffet

Trader Joe’s had these perky Daffodils for $1.29 for a bunch of 10, you can’t say no to adding a little color to your house or work at that price. This bunny, my Mom gave to me and I absolutely LOVE it. I love the color, the texture and the sweet little bunny face.

Even Mr. Old Window got into the act with a Moss letter D, a craft I made last year inspired by the Pottery Barn initials here. I added some egg ornaments, Chenille chicks and a “Spring” banner I made with paper and embellishments from My Minds Eye.

Mr. Old Window dressed for Spring

Spring Banner

My vignette on the wine refrigerator made with an silver chalkboard tray, some dollar bin Target Easter eggs, grass and chevron paper basket. The Egg topiary I had from last year.

Spring Vignette

Spring12 mantle

So wherever Spring has found you I hope you are enjoying all of the beautiful colors, even if it has to be inside for now!