Thursday, May 27, 2010

Update on Mia Anna

Mia has been taken off the ventilator and is breathing on her own without a oxygen hood. That is good. She is still in the hospital but is now eating and should start the weight gain. Like all babies she lost a little water weight after being born. Beth and Stebel continue the daily drive to Reno from Gardnerville. Jolene and I continue to tag along whenever they let us. Things are looking good!

Moms first day out of the hospital and on her way to see Mia for the first time!

Before they let you into the ICU to hold a preemie baby they have you wash up to your elbows with a scrub brush for 2 minutes each arm. But, boy is it worth it.

Ahhhhhh, now that's better!

They even let papa hold her. Isn't he cute?

Monday, May 24, 2010

With Arms Wide Open

A couple of years ago Creed recorded the song "With Arms Wide Open". It tells the story

Well I just heard the news today
seems my life is going to change
I close my eyes, begin to pray
tears of joy stream down my face

With arms wide open
under the sunlight
welcome to this place
I'll show you everything
with arms wide open

With arms wide open

Well I don't know if I'm ready
to be the man I have to be
I take a breath, I take her by my side
we stand in awe, we've created life

We want to welcome Mia Anna Stebel!

To start at the beginning....I met this guy 5 or 6 years ago at work one night. He says my name is Maciej Stebel. I said "What!?" He says "call me Stebel." That was the start of a great friendship.

Stebel is one of those guys, you know, that you would like to wring their neck sometimes. Funny, witty, snide, and one of the nicest guys you will ever meet. If your car breaks down, you can call Stebel any time and he will come help. He is a great photographer and owns his own busy business, Stebel Photography, but if you need some great pictures on short notice, he will be there. He donates his time and product to the community. He is also a nut.

Can you say "extreme"? Yeah, he is the one driving the jeep!

Then Stebel's girlfriend Beth came to work with us.

At first Beth seemed a little shy. But oh no, we soon learned the truth. Beth would come up with the funniest one liners, totally shocking everyone. She is a strong, beautiful, intelligent, and talented young lady. She makes a mean cake, too. This was my dear daughter's 16th birthday cake, made from scratch by Beth.

Don't ask me how Stebel took this photo of the two of them, but they sure enjoy life.

Beth is a pretty extreme girl, too. I mean, how many young ladies do you know that buy a house, get married, become a United States citizen, get laid off from their job, and get pregnant. All in one month! Yup, that's our Beth. Cool, calm and collected she takes everything in stride. Now our other friend, Jolene and I are another story. Both of us are Geminis and when all 4 of our personalities get in a room together (you know, the twins) there is trouble. We were so excited Beth was going to be a mom. Beth was a little sick in the beginning, like for 3 months, but that made us more excited because that meant she was going to have a girl! They say (the old wives tale) a daughter is jealous of the mom and tries to rob her of her beauty by making her sick. It did not work with Beth, she was always beautiful and once she got through the first trimester everything was peachy keen, until Saturday, May 22, 2010.

On Saturday, while I was at the fundraiser I wrote about, Jolene texted me and asked if I had heard from Stebel. It seems Beth was not feeling well so they went to the urgent care. At 8:00pm Jolene called me and asked what I was doing. By 9:00pm I had driven to the east side of the valley, picked Jolene up, and we drove (never over the speed limit) to the north end of Carson City to the hospital. Beth was in big trouble! They tried to helicopter her to Reno but with the May snowstorm they could not fly. Beth had been having trouble with her blood pressure and she was in distress with Preeclampsia which is a pregnancy condition in which high blood pressure and protein in the urine develop after the 20th week (late 2nd or 3rd trimester) of pregnancy.

Symptoms of more severe preeclampsia:
•Headaches that are dull or throbbing and will not go away
•Abdominal pain, mostly felt on the right side, underneath the ribs. Pain may also be felt in the right shoulder, and can be confused with heartburn, gallbladder pain, a stomach virus, or the baby kicking
•Decreased urine output, not urinating very often
•Nausea and vomiting (worrisome sign)
•Vision changes -- temporary loss of vision, sensations of flashing lights, auras, light sensitivity, spots, and blurry vision.

Beth had all the symptoms.
The only way to cure preeclampsia is to deliver the baby. So that is what they did. Beth had an emergency C-section and a 5 lb. 2 oz. baby girl was born. Mia Anna Stebel. The hospital in Reno sent an ambulance with a premature baby team to Carson City and within a couple of hours the baby was on her way through a snow storm to the Renown Health Hospital. They are the only Children's Hospital, Children's ER, Children's Specialty Care, Pediatric ICU, and Children's Infusion Center in the region that caters to the many pediatric needs in northern Nevada. They like to keep premature babies in the hospital until their due date so Mia might be there for 6 weeks. She had a breathing tube the first day so she would not forget to breath, but Stebel called last night and she is breathing on her own now. It will be a long month for the new parents but with their extended family, us and all their many friends, they will get through it. Mia will get stronger every day and she will soon come home and Jolene already has enough little dresses to last the first year!

We are so proud of Beth, and Stebel too. He insisted on taking Beth to urgent care and saved her life. Even with all the pain she was in, she did what she had to do to keep the baby safe. They are going to be great parents, they already are!

Here are a few pictures.

Beth is still in Carson City so Jolene came up with the brilliant idea to print some pictures of Mia so she will have her near. Jolene is a smart girl!

The proud papa! As you can see, the baby has Beth's good looks, thank goodness!

The nurse told us that light strokes to the baby are too stimulating for a preemie and to "cocoon them" which is the feeling they have in the womb. Stebel demonstrates.

Mia has beautiful color!

She may look small here but she is 5 lbs., did not need a hood on her basinet, and has quite a grip already!
This is a picture of the proud aunties! (I have not decided if I am an auntie or granny yet) Jolene in red and me in white.

Well Stebel, I know you are the man you need to be, I am so very proud of you! And Beth, I told you I wanted the baby born on my birthday, you were close. But at least we have another Gemini in our group! And Jolene and I are going to teach her everything she needs to know! Oh boy, are you in trouble mom and dad!

Saturday, May 22, 2010

Happy Landings Unique, High-Value Home Decor and Art Fund Raiser

I have been very busy making product for a fundraiser later today. Yes it is 3:27 am and I am wide awake. A by product of working the graveyard shift for over 13 years is you love being awake in the middle of normal sleeping hours.

The Carson Valley Vanguard Coalition, Inc. is raising money to protect and promote the Minden-Tahoe Airport as a recreational and general aviation facility. There has been the huge debate on what weight aircraft should be allowed at our little airport.

So, if you are in the area, we will be at the Holiday Inn Express, Minden, Nevada from noon until 5 pm.

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Sapphire Wizard Fired Arts

Sapphire Wizard has moved to town! Their new location is 1459 US Hwy 395, Gardnerville, NV 89410.

I had the pleasure of meeting Mary Ann, the owner of Sapphire Wizard Fired Arts Store, at a Wine Walk at Three Rooms Gallery. She has been a Ceramic Artist for over 30 years, she grew up helping her mom. She knows the business from the ground up. Mary Ann not only paints ceramics, she creates the figures she fires to bisque. We stopped by her 2000 square foot store in the Gardnerville Ranchos, and just loved it. I can also help her host birthday parties, clean the clay before she fires them, and hang out. Her husband, Ken is an engineer by day and clay artist by night.

Mary Ann and Ken own over 1200 molds

and pour their own "paint your own pottery". They start with a thin clay called slip. This is poured into a clamped mold,

then left to coat the inside for 20-30 minutes. When the slip is poured out it leaves a thin layer of clay called a shell. When this clay shell becomes leather hard, about 1 hour, the mold is taken apart and the figurine is taken out and dried for a couple of days. These are then cleaned and fired. This is called bisque and it is now ready to paint.

The puppy on the left just came out of the mold, on the right has been fired once.

At Sapphire Wizard there are thousands of figures to choose from.

They are also licensed to pour and sell Disney Characters.

Mary Ann has over 100 different non-toxic, kid safe paint colors.

You can create a one of a kind masterpiece for yourself or a to give as a gift. Mary Ann also offers gift certificates, a perfect gift for any age!

It might be a little overwhelming when you walk in the door, but go right in! Mary Ann has opened the front of the store to retail. You will find many artists selling their products. At last count I saw handmade beads, painted ceramics, jewelry, and of course soap!

This is also where Birthday and Special Occasion Parties are held. Mary Ann has seating for 45 and has held many community functions in the store from baby showers, church get together, office parties, boy and girl scouts working on badges, girls (and boys) night out, and of course birthdays.

Once inside Mary Ann or Ken will show you the great selection of bisque. Pick a piece and you are off.

The price of the bisque and a small studio fee is all you pay. The studio fee covers any paints you need and the final clear glaze and firing of your piece. Sapphire Wizard Arts differs from most ceramic stores. Here you paint at your pace. If you finish in 10 minutes, 1 hour, 3 days, it does not matter, you pay only one studio fee per piece. The studio is family friendly. Mary Ann also has a room for little ones to play while waiting for mom to finish up. There are toys to play with in a contained, safe area.

There are on going classes being held at the store. Camille Howard, local and famous Ceramic Artist, teaches brush stroke classes. There are also clay hand building, bead, and jewelry making classes. They have a bisque sale during the first week of the month, teachers get 15% off on Fridays, and Tuesdays are 2 for Tuesdays.

You can see more photos and get the latest information for Sapphire Wizard Fired Arts on their website Sapphire Wizard and their FaceBook.
Check out the tiles going up on the wall at CC Meneley Elementary School. The students had the opportunity to do a self portrait tile that will be permanently attached to the wall. Mary Ann supports the local community. When you buy a raffle ticket from a school or club, you can be sure a gift certificate from Sapphire Wizard will be one of the prizes. They donate to the Fishing Derby, Bun co For Breast Cancer, Boys and Girl Club, Relay for Life, 4H Scuba Club, Douglas High School Volleyball, and many more.

The store is located at 811 Short Ct. in the Gardnerville Ranchos, near the Pizza Factory. The phone number is 775-265-6972. The summer hours are Tue. thru Sat. 10am till 6pm. They are also open evenings by appointment only.

Sunday, May 9, 2010

Without You

It was at a late age that I was blessed with a child. I had always wanted a large family, but after 2 miscarriages as I neared age 40 I was starting to fear I would never be a mother. Then my miracle happened and on a Friday the 13th I welcomed my little girl into the world. I was so happy I had a girl. My mother always told me I would never know how much she loved me until I had a daughter of my own. Boy was she right. That little girl had my heart from the moment I saw her, screaming her head off. She still is, even at 6'1", my little girl, and always will be.

My husband came from one of those families that grew up during the Great Depression. His dad rode the rails going from town to town looking for work. One day after sneaking off the train he found a silver dollar. He told us that was the cat's meow. He got a room, a bath and a shave, and a steak dinner for that dollar. A dollar bought a lot in those days, but he never wasted it on something frivolous, like flowers, or a card, or candy. dear mother in law only got 1 card during the over 50 years they were married. Since we learn by example my husband is not a card, gift or flower giving kind of guy, either.

I am from a family that celebrates everything. We may not have had all the money in the world, but when you have a mom that can make everything you will never lack for anything. Birthdays at our house were an event. We would hide gifts all over, write notes and have treasure hunts. As we got older we made sure Santa brought gifts for our parents. Even now, there is a celebration of some sort at my folk's house every couple of months. It does not matter if they are there or not. And, with 5 kids, we made sure my mom knew we appreciated her, even if for only that 1 day a year.

I made sure my dear daughter knew the joy of celebration. Her first Mother's Day I took her to a florist and let her pick out a corsage for me to wear to work. Yup, starting at age 10 months old she was able to pick out the flowers, order, pick up and pay for flowers for her dear old mom. She always knew what I wanted.

This card was handmade by Delores Henderson. She is a featured artist at the Brewery Arts Center Artistian Store in Carson City, Nevada.

As she got older she wanted to go out on her own, so with her dad she would get me some beautiful cards and heart necklaces. I still have them all. But sometimes it is the handmade things that get to you. She wrote me this poem many years ago, I think she was 10. I would like to share it with you, and wish you all the very happiest of Mother's Days.

Without You
everything you do for me, amazes me
you are always in my heart, together or apart
I love you more than words can say
so I'll just kiss you and walk away
but truly, honestly, deep down
I know exactly how I feel
I just can't make it form a word
you are my sun, stars, and world

it is stronger than lightning bolt
stronger than a hurricane
earthquake, tsunami
I could survive it all with you
but if you weren't here
I don't know how I could
live without you

Happy Mother's Day

Thursday, May 6, 2010

Jumbos Sub And Catering Shop

On a brighter note, there is Jaime and John Anzelone. With their daughter Aleassa they opened their deli in June of 2002. Jaime and John both worked in a casino and were looking for a way to become their own bosses. They found something they both loved, eating and eating sandwiches specifically, and with some of John's secret family recipes in hand, they offer much more than just subs. Homemade soups, Italian dinners, homemade pasta and potato salads, chips and sodas are on the menu, along with a huge variety of meat and veggie sandwiches and wraps. They also offer catering. They have a wide selection of veggie, sandwich, and wrap trays to choose from.

Located in the Tillman Center near the bowling alley, 1281 suite #10 Kimmerling Road in the Gardnerville Ranchos, the store is open Mon.-Sat. 10:30am to 4pm. You can call in orders 775-265-4511 or fax in an order 775-265-6553.

John has gone back to a 9-5 job while Jaime runs the shop full time with a little help from family.

They have had offers to move the shop but they had Aleassa in local schools and she started to help at the store when she was 11. No child labor here, she was well paid and always had her spending money.

She has since graduated high school and is finishing up her degree in Fire Science at Truckee Meadows College and is still working part time at the Douglas swimming pool. Jaime says they would not consider moving now to a different location after all the support the community has shown them even when times were tough. They have a good loyal customer base because the food is delicious.

Of course there is always room for more! After 8 years in the same location they are truly part of the neighborhood.

The shop is proof of their love for sports. With a TV tuned to sports channels and with the walls covered with the souvenirs of their sports travels it is fun to browse the shop while your lunch or dinner is being made.

They continue to support youth sports and have sponsored sports teams and donated to raffles. Stop by on your next outing, picnic or lunch and sample good food from your neighborhood sub shop.

Jaime with Aleassa hard at work!

Monday, May 3, 2010

I Am Sad Today

We closed Three Rooms Gallery-Felix Pottery. The economic times just got to be too much for the owner and the artists. This seems to be a slow time for shoppers in a good year.

Flowers are blooming, weather is warming up and people tend to spend more time outdoors, not shopping. This year is even worse. No one would come into the shop for days. Not the way to run a business. So...the building is up for sale. It will be open for "Ring in Kindness" on the 2nd and 4th Tuesdays from 2:30-4:30 PM so join us for some clay time.

We will miss seeing you all and visiting during the wine walks. It has been a great couple of years. Thanks for you business.

I do sell my soaps in a few other places around town.

My web site is

I have soap at the following places

Sapphire Wizard

Artisan Cafe & Gift Shop

Lake Tahoe Visitors Center