My blog is called "Creative Smiles" because my designs are the result of incorporating mistakes. With fumble fingers that drop whatever they are holding - repeatedly, it takes a lot of giggles, smiles and creative patience during my crafting process. xx

Thursday, May 24, 2018

Black and White and one more Color!

Hello, friends! It's a great time to share that I've become part of a fabulous Challenge Blog Team - Moving Along With The Times.

(For those who have been kindly asking about me,
there is an explanation at the bottom of my post.)

Challenge 72's theme has been chosen by team member JESSIE -
Anything Goes using the colors Black, White and one other color. 

My stamp is at least 10 years old, but probably older. It was a gift from Paula, handmade in the USA by Inkadinkadoo, and purchased in a Chicago Hobby Lobby.
I found one today on e-Bay here.

Both the inside and outside use a variety of dies from the Twisting Verenda Layering Die set. It's a wonderful shape with lots of options.

After die cutting the frame, I coated it with Black Diamonds MicroFine Velvet Glitter.   

Monochromatic themes are always a pleasure. Here I used Tumbled Glass Distress Ink to distress the aqua paper edge and to color the image.

For visual interest and a little sparkle, I used two stamps and two embossing powders.

They provided even more detail around the microfine glittered frame:

The interior uses both positive and negative pieces from the same die cut set with more Poolside Glittery embossing powder:

Finished card:

There is something so magical about hummingbirds. I cherish when they visit my container gardens in search of color and nectar, and I am always mesmerized when I stand holding my watering can, and they watch me from a yard or two away, eye-to-eye. Their little wings create the most beautiful "humming" music. Pure magic!


Challenges I'd like to play in please:
  1. As you Like It Challenge (May 24) Favorite Flora or Fauna and Why (as I wrote above - There is something so magical about hummingbirds. I cherish when they visit my container gardens in search of color and nectar, and I am always mesmerized when I stand holding my watering can, and they watch me from a yard or two away, eye-to-eye. Their little wings create the most beautiful "humming" music. Pure magic! ) 6/7
  2. Crafters Cafe Blog Challenge #194 "All Creatures Great and Small" 6/1
  3. Crafty Calendar Challenge (May) "Things With Wings" 6/4
  4. Creatalicious Challenges #139 Anything Goes + "all that glitters" - the frame is covered with microfine glitter, and both embossing powders contain glitter for the background) 5/31 (sep - sev wks)
  5. Daisy Chain Challenge #19 Animals 6/5
  6. Monochrome Magic #11 Monochrome Theme + no pattern papers (mine is hand stamped and heat set with embossing powders) 6/12
  7. Pammie's Inky Pinkies #1820 AG 5/28
  8. Scrapy Land #90 AG using die brand SL sells (Tonic Studios and Spellbinders) 6/6 sep post
  9. Stamping Sensations (May) Close To Nature - 6/4 sep post
  10. Unicorn Challenge #32 Monochrome 6/3 sep post
  11. World Wide Open Design Team Challenge #5 AG for DT (6/15)

On a Personal Note:

After wrestling these past 6 months about whether to share such a personal matter, I decided yes. To my friends, it will explain a little about me. BUT MOSTLY, I share because many of you may be suffering from the same disease, or may know someone with it who has not been properly diagnosed.

Frequently, a diagnosis can be overlooked because of previous diagnoses. Because so little is known about many syndromes, a disease may improperly be diagnosed as something else. As medical advances take place, and genome therapies are created, diseases will become more accurately diagnosed.

In the meantime, many doctors lump Myofascial Pain Syndrome in with Fibromyalgia, Rheumatoid Arthritis, Tendonitis and Bursitis, but it is decidedly different, and has unique symptoms. Myofascial Pain Syndrome affects the entire body.

What is fascial tissue? Our organs and muscles are all protected and lined in myofascial tissues which allow them to move and keep lubricated. They connect our muscles to each other, to bones, ligaments, and cartilage. While sufferers contend with pain, fatigue, depression, low-grade temperatures, nausea, flu-symptoms, neuropathy and loss of sleep, the myofascial tissues are found in our mouths, ears, organs, all muscles, and can cause spasms, and inexplicable "strange" occurrences. Momentary loss of ability can occur. Sometimes impairments last hours, but can go on for weeks, months, years, and even, permanently. It progressively worsens with each "exacerbation". A sense of humor is needed because it's quite disheartening to suddenly lose lose control over body parts - especially in front of others.

No one knows what causes the MPS yet, but it is likely genetic (not necessarily inherited). If you hear of someone struggling and trying to figure out why Fibromyalgia drugs are not working for them, or why they are experiencing strange, transient, often neurologic symptoms uncommon in FMS, they may also have Myofascial Pain Syndrome. For me, the use of my hands is iffy at best. My speech is affected, and I choke for no reason. Sometimes I have violent coughing attacks or inappropriate gagging reflexes, due to the constriction of the of throat or esophagus. As you can guess, it affects the "unmentionable" organs and vital organs. Consider how your muscles change "shape" as they stretch and contract. It is the myofascial sheath that moves with those muscles, connecting them to ligaments and such, to permit a smooth movement. If it suddenly "freezes", and the person is already in mid-stride, it means the muscle cannot change shape for the movement, and extreme pain or impairment results.

While I also have FMS and some other problems, I find it helpful to know which disease is causing which symptoms in order to determine the best course of treatment for that moment. Many people are diagnosed with multiple conditions which are actually the results of MPS. 

I'm sorry this is so long. 

Here is a video about MPS. 

Here is a video how MPS affects organs, 
in particular THE HEART, to give you an idea how how it may affect organs.

Hopefully you don't know anyone with these issues, but it is often misdiagnosed as FMS, or overlooked as a possibility entirely.  Thanks for listening.



Lori Kobular said...

Dear Donna ~ first let me say I am so very sorry you have to deal with MPS! Thank you for sharing your information, I am sure that was not an easy thing to do. But knowledge and awareness are so important. I wish there was something I could do to help you! You are so strong and have such a positive attitude! You bring so much joy and love to everyone who sees your beautiful creations! Your card today is stunning! I love your color combination! Stay strong, my friend and know that you are loved for who you are!!

Monica said...

Dearest Donna,

I have been meaning to write to you and tell you how much I have been missing you. Sorry that I didn't. First to you card which is very simple and impactful. I love the shiny treatment you have given it and the flowers are gorgeous.
Thank you for being so brave and sharing with us what you go through. You are such a positive person always giving sage advise inspite of what you go through. I respect and salute you.

Lots of love,


SD pooja said...

You are really a very brave person Donna ! Rather than shying away you shared openly about the diseasea,all my wishes with you for your good health .Coming to your card it lovely specially I like how you layer various die cuts , this challenge blog is new to to check :)

Jackie T said...

Hi Donna lets start with the card it is simply stunning it is just so beautiful. Thank you for sharing about MPS. I had no idea that you are suffering like this. It is good to have things out in the open and I am sure it will be a help to other. Take care. Hugs Jackie

KarinsArtScrap said...

Hi Donna what a gorgeous card you have made and a great colour combo

Gr Karin

jimlynn said...

Donna, your card is simply gorgeous. Love all the fine details on this. Congrats on the DT too!
I'm so sorry to read about the health issues you're having. I've never heard of MPS. Stay strong and hopefully things will get better with time. Hang in there!

Wendy L said...

Your card is gorgeous Donna, thank you.

This illness sounds horrible, I have not really heard about this before,

Wendy L

Jenny L said...

Hi Donna,
what a very beautiful card and your design is so wonderful.
Love that stamped image and your one colour choice.

So sorry to hear about your health issues.

Now being a sufferer with lots of those symptoms I realize why I am in so much pain lately.
I am my worst enemy as I hate visiting the Doctors.
Thank you for sharing this with us as it puts a light on lots of things.

Lots of crafty love and hugs. Jenny L.

Linda Simpson said...

Hello Donna, so sorry you are having issues with your health, and sending gentle hugs.

Your card is stunning! Love the step by step detailed photographs.
Linda xxx

Lisa said...

My dear friend, you are so strong and brave to share your struggles with us. I had not heard of MPS before, so thank you for bringing it to light. I am so sorry you have to deal with this and you are in my daily prayers. Praying for a cure, too. You are a ray of light to so many people and I personally treasure your friendship. I'm so thankful to have met you in blogland, Donna!!

Your card is stunning!! The colors are so beautiful!! I love the background and the pretty flowers!! Thinking of you and sending big hugs your way :)

A Mermaid's Crafts

KraftyKoolKat said...

I am so sorry sweetie to hear the news that you are suffering from MPS. It must be really awful for you. You are always bright & an inspiration to us all. I hope they find some help for you through all this.

Your card is gorgeous. I don't know how you produce such beautiful work time & time again with your pain sweetie.

DIANA L. said...

Oh Donna, so sorry you are suffering from this. I will keep you in my prayers for God's healing power and for the Dr.s to find a solution for your needs.

Chris said...

First Donna, it's lovely to see you back with a fabulous card, beautifully designed and crafted as always! Congrats on your new DT post too!
Secondly, thank you for being brave enough to share the reason for your absence, what a horrible illness MPS is, I'm so sorry that you suffer from this awful condition. Here's praying that with all the amazing medical advances these days that someone will find a cure for some of these terrible debilitating illnesses.
Big, but very gentle, hugs

Hazel said...

Your card is beautiful and I love the sentiment. I'm sorry you're having to deal with such health issues and can only pray that you feel better soon. Hazel x

Sue said...

Hi Donna, Lovely card.

I have Arthritis and Fibromyalgia, so can sympathise slightly, but MPS sounds awful. Sending heaps of positive healing thoughts and huge hugs (((Donna))).

Take care

Leslie Miller said...

First, Donna, congratulations on your new team membership! You'll enjoy it and I know they're very happy to have you. Just look at all the fun involved in this pretty card. I remember this beautiful sketchy Inkadinkado stamp. They sure have some pretty ones! How wonderful it looks with just the blue shading. Perfect for the challenge. Gorgeous Tonic die set, too.

I'm glad you shared a thorough explanation of MPS. That one syndrome sure encompasses a lot of symptoms that could be mistaken for multiple conditions. Put them all together and it explains a lot. You're a brave soul, dealing with this and trying to keep your chin up. I know how you love and appreciate life and all the beauty around you, and you create beauty, too. I can just say thank you for being you. I'm humbled.

cotnob said...

A stunning card Donna, a beautiful image and I love the aqua and black combination, it is so elegant.
I am sorry to hear that you are suffering so much, I do hope that your medical team can help with the symptoms and pain - take care.
Pauline - Crafting with Cotnob

Ann Greenspan's Crafts said...

Donna, such a pretty card with the extra color you've chosen. I always look forward to seeing a post from you because it makes me believe you are doing okay when you might not being doing so in reality. You are such a positive person and always see the good in others; you definitely hide the pain and suffering the MPS can cause. I'm sorry you have to go through this and hope you have a loving support system to help you through the tough days and nights. Congrats on the new DT spot!

Donna Phelan said...

I always love your sparkle, you must leave a trail lol This is so pretty, love the blues and of course your layers. Your sentiment could say, FROM someone special. Sorry to hear about your ailments, I'm hoping that by posting these and crafting such beautiful cards, that you are feeling good. xo~

Debbie Mageed said...

Hi, Donna! So happy to see that you are back in your craft room!! This card is stunning, as always. It was meant for this challenge. Congrats on your new Design Team. I haven't seen it before so will try to play along. Sorry to hear about your illness! I pray that you are doing better and will continue to improve. Sending you a hug!

Verna Angerhofer said...

Your card is so gorgeous and well designed, but then you always do wonderful work. And congrats on the new design team gig too. I am so glad you explained your health issues. Some of what you experienced I understand quite well. But in all the time I have interacted with you I don’t think I ever saw you show it in your attitude and demeanor. I have always found you to be very upbeat and always ready to offer help and positive messages to others. I admire you for that and especially now that I hear how you are suffering at times. And it never shows in your card designs that you are suffering. They are always gorgeous. You certainly are an inspiration to me. Hugs, Verna

Conniecrafter said...

First of all Donna, Congrats on your new blog team!! Your card is just beautiful, I too have that stamp and only used it once, I wasn't quite sure how to color it and I just love how you added color to it in this card. Just love your black shiny sparkle framing to it also! So good to see you creating again.
I am so sorry to hear about all you have been going through. I have not heard of this, I have friends who are dealing with fibromyalgia though. I can only imagine it feels good to at least know now what you are dealing with so you can get help with the right thing. I wish you all the best as you fight and deal with all this, I pray you have more good days then bad and that you can get all the possible help with this and that there will be a cure. Hugs to you!!

Ina G said...

Beautiful card Donna. So glad you shared your story with us all. That was courageous and would have gotso many issues out in the open helping you deal with your health issues.I have a sister that suffers from fybromyalgia and other health problems and see her pain. Stay strong knowing you have so many friends thinking of you and caring. Hugs Ina.

pst said...

Great card, thanks for sharing your creation with us at Creatalicious. We hope to see you back again.

Annettes Hobby Rosettes said...

Wow Donna you poor thing, I am so sorry to hear that you suffer so badly, but it is good to know that you have been diagnosed with the cause. I dare say it would be a tricky medical issue that would be difficult to pin point. I hope you are able to manage with MPS as well as FM, no doubt must be a huge struggle for you. I am so pleased though with your ailments you were able to put this gorgeous project together which has turned out absolutely amazing and a credit to you. Thank you also for sharing the step-by-step tutorial, I love to see just how projects are created and all the work that goes into creating such a stunning Card. Lovely work and I wish you all the best for your health Donna. Sending big scrappy hugs over to you. xxx
Thank you for sharing with us here today at World Wide Open Design Team Challenge and best of luck with your entry.

Annette DT Registered Owners/Admin for World Wide Open Design Team Challenge


Beebeebabs said...

I am so sorry to hear about your issues - MPS is new to me thank you for sharing the video thus giving us a better understanding. I will keep you in my prayers my friend. Thanks for sharing your lovely card - love everything about it.

Valerija said...

Great card. Love the image and I always love your glittery details.
Valerija xx

Linda Vich said...

Hi Donna!

So sorry to hear about your MPS—why would this happen to such a sweet person?

The card you have designed is lovely! Yo really know how to rock the layers!

April said...

I am so sorry to hear about your health. I know you are glad that they know what it is so that you can know how to best handle it.

I love your card and I have this stamp. You did a great job with it!


*Vicki* said...

Hello my friend! First let me say that I'm so sorry you are dealing with these health matters. It makes it hard to concentrate and hopefully you can find the best treatment options for you. Your creation is absolutely stunning as I can't help but Oooh and Aaaah over ever single time I see something you've made! Beautifully done! I wanted to tell you that I obviously haven't stopped following you, but I just haven't been around much for a while. I have started up a new blog and would love for you to come say hi when you have some time! Wishing you lots of hugs

cass said...

First I wish you well with your health issues and thank you for entering your wonderful creation at The Crafter's Cafe this fortnight for our "All creatures Great and Small" challenge.

Ellen said...

Great card, well done! Thanks for joining us at Daisy Chain Challenges.
Take care...

groetjes, Ellen

Birdie said...

Absolutely beautiful! As a mother of a child with two "orphan" diseases, kudos for sharing not only this stunning card, but information to educate people; not always an easy choice because it can be so painfully personal.

Diane said...

Beautiful card Donna, a fabulous stamp!! Of course you know I love all the glittery goodness this has! A beautiful design as well! So sorry to hear about this terrible disease, one I haven't heard of before. I think we all have our bad days with one thing or another , I know I do, but this sounds very unpleasant at best! I hope you feel better soon and get some relief to you and a BIG hug from Michigan...enjoy your Holiday..thinking of you!

Pam Tiedtke, or Pammie Lou said...

Beautiful card! I love the shades of blue and the sparkle. I'm so happy you shared it with us at PIP Challenges. I'm sorry to hear about the struggles with pain you're going through. I believe in prayer and I will lift you up!

Desire Fourie said...

Wow Donna, this is just so beautiful and creative. Just adore the aqua and black, it is so striking.
{Doing Life – my personal blog}
PS: Life is happening and I apologise for my lengthy absence here. I can see I have missed out on loads of your awesomeness x

Craft buddy said...

Firstly - so brave of you to be so open about your diagnosis. Good luck in getting the treatment you need. I really like your turquoise, black and white card this week x

crafty-stamper said...

Hi Donna sorry to hear what you are going through and thank you for enlightening us I have never heard of MPS before I hope you get some ease with the symptoms.
Congrats on your new DT and I love the fabulous card great dies cut frames and love the beautiful image with just a hint of colour
Carol x

Brenda said...

Donna, your card is gorgeous! I pray you have many more good days than bad and that progress is made toward treating/curing MPS. Thanks so much for joining us at As You Like It Challenge!

Sue said...

I knew something was very wrong with you, as you have been gone from crafting for a long time this time. I'm sorry you have suffered so in silence. I'm glad you have explained your diagnosis and what you have been going through. I wish there was something that I could say or do that would make you know that I am thinking of you, keeping you in my prayers and most of all hoping that there could be a miracle drug or cure for this terrible disease.
Donna, your card is stunning. I think I may have this stamp, and I can tell you that it never looked that good when I used it! Love the color combo you chose with your black and white, and of course the glittered background and beautiful details and die cut shape.
I marvel at your strength and determination. Congrats on the new DT, they are lucky to have you.

{{Big Hug}}

Janice said...

A beautiful floral card Donna, I love the colour combo you have used.
So sorry to read about your health problems, I hope crafting as and when you can will make you feel a little better.
Janice x

crafty-stamper said...

Hi Donna just popping back to say---Thank you for joining us at Daisy Chain
Carol DT x

Marlies said...

A gorgeous card Donna. It has a lovely vintage look over it and I love the stamp you used. Beautiful made!! Sorry to read about your health. Take good care. Thanks for joining our challenge at Stamping Sensations. Marlies

Dora said...

Beautiful card with this stamp.
Thank you for joining at Stamping Sensations this month.
(so sorry read about your health. Take care!)

jheuser69 said...

Your card is beautiful. Thank you for sharing with us over here at World Wide Open Design Team Challenge and best of luck with your entry.

Jodie DT for  World Wide Open Design Team Challenge

sarascloset said...

Hi Donna! I was so excited when I saw your blog name listed as a top 3 pick at Scrapy Land! That meant you were back in business! And I can see why this is a top pick!! What a great design and fabulous sparkle!

Congratulations on your new DT appointment! They are so blessed to have you aboard!

As for your personal note, I'm so sorry you are suffering this massive conglomeration of symptoms! Your Doc must have been a genius to figure it out! While I have heard of MFPS, I've only have knowledge of the pain it causes in extremities, never having to deal with the other systems as a LPTA, but it makes sense. Have you experienced an unwinding yet? If you get a good therapist, there's nothing better for MF pain. Keep me posted on your progress. Praying for your comfort! Hugs!

Squirrel x said...

This is really lovely, thanks so much for sharing your creativity with us for this AYLI challenge. See you again soon! Sending love and gentle hugs Xx

Lisa J said...

I hope that you will be feeling better soon. Thank you for sharing your story and your lovely card. Lisa Monochrome Magic

KT Fit Kitty said...

I love hummingbirds so much - your card is stunning, Donna! I like how you coloured the image selectively - it really makes the image pop! I read your personal note and it was very difficult to do so. I was actually here before but couldn't leave a comment after seeing how you've been suffering with this disease. I do hope you have some good days, Donna. Always thinking of you and wishing you well, my friend.