Tuesday 19 April 2022

A Very Special Birthday


Hi everyone,  Long time no blog!

All has been very quiet for me crafty wise as we have had a very unfortunate emergency in the family.

If you do not wish to read all about it please jump to the ***** for the card details.

Usually on a Wednesday I pick up my mother in law from the supermarket on my way home from work and take her home. As it was so close to Christmas and I knew she had meals out planned I called her on Monday 6th December to see if she needed to go a different day. She sounded like she had a chest infection or something as her lungs sounded full of liquid. I asked if she was feeling okay and she said she had hurt her arm. She lives on her own and she sounded so bad my first thought was she had developed Covid. I was really worried about her so when hubby finished work we went round. She was in a bad state, I tested her for covid and it went positive straight away. She was in a confused state and went in and out of lucidity. She said her arm hurt and it had a lump where it was swollen. Hubby had spoken to her Saturday afternoon and she was fine then but she had not eaten or drank since the Saturday night, nor had she phoned anyone to say she had fallen.  I was just so very grateful that I had called her that day and dread to think what would have happened if I hadn't.

My hubby stayed with her overnight and then spent most of Tuesday speaking to her Dr and trying to get an ambulance. They said they were under so much pressure, nothing available, back of the queue as she was covid positive. After 6 hours of waiting they even told us they could not do anything for her and told us to put it in a sling. We were told we couldn't take her to A & E as they would refuse her due to being covid positive. In the end her daughter took her to a smaller hospital closer to where she lives (but 45 miles away from us). They x-rayed and found she had broken her left shoulder in 2 places. She was not vaccinated and the covid was really bad on her lungs. She was in hospital for 6 weeks and a rehabilitation unit for another 2 weeks. It looks like she developed low blood pressure and collapsed thus breaking her arm. While her lungs were so full of fluid they could only strap it up to immobilise it. They were unable to lay her on her left side or front which made it harder to clear her lungs. We were told twice she had 24-48 hours to respond to treatment and they gave us the most terrible prognosis for her. Basically they said as she was 78, not vaccinated and also a woman if they put her on full ventilation in ICU then she was unlikely to survive. At the very least her quality of life would be minimal afterwards. She was on full oxygen for weeks, not allowed to get out of bed as her BP went too low and they were worried she would collapse.

She needed full time care when she came out of the rehab ward as she is left handed and could do nothing for herself. The first few weeks she went to her daughter's house where she had carers twice a day washing and dressing her. Then on 13th February she was transferred to our house where our council could not provide any care so personal duties fell to me. The first few weeks were just full on and so tiring. Mom was getting up to the loo 4 or 5 times a night and I am a light sleeper so would wake up most of the time too. I work part time but its early morning starts, then shopping, personal care, washing and cooking for 3. It was bloody exhausting I can tell you. My free time went completely out the window so crafting was on a needs must basis. I had to pause all my Design Team commitments as I just could not be relied up to to do anything that was time sensitive.

The most fantastic thing though is that we have been able to rehabilitate her and give her back the majority of her strength and mobility. We got her maisonette decorated, sorted out a long list of things she had needed to get done for a long time and made her home much more welcoming for her. On Sunday 10th we took her back to her place and most days we have popped round to sort things out for her, take her shopping and basically support her. She is surprised how easily she tires and I think it will be a while before she feels 'back to normal'. I'll not lie to you, these last few months have been exceptionally challenging for many reasons but when all is said and done family is super important and we all have to do our part when bad times come. I am just so incredibly proud of the fighter that Mom is and that she managed to pull through this, despite all the naysayers.


It is therefore quite fitting that this first card I have blogged for 2022 is for Mom's Birthday. Considering there was a very real possibility she would not see this birthday I am sure you can agree it was indeed something to celebrate.

I used a digital image that I had already coloured some time ago with Promarkers. I updated it and added lots of twinkle with some glitter markers from Spectrum Noir. I used the colours of blue and yellow as they look lovely together, but also to show support for Ukraine which is just the most awful situation.

The card is 8" square. the patterned paper is a really old Hot Off The Press one with blue card matting layers. The gold edged ribbon has sunflowers which were fussy cut from a DCWV sunflower themed paper. To this I added epoxy alphabet stickers to spell MOM. The sentiment is a Kanban diecut. Finally I added a yellow pearl and a plastic butterfly that looks like it is diamante.

Made by Mandy is not back upto full steam just yet but hoping it will only take a short while for Mom to adjust to living on her own again. As time goes by and she gains more confidence she won't need her hand holding quite so much and I can get back to crafting for pleasure again and get back onto my DT work. I have missed it so much but sometimes in life you are thrown a curve ball and the path leads you in a different direction.

Card Details -

Size - 8” Square

Digital Image - Swallowtail & Sunflower (Just Inklined Retired)

Colouring Medium - Promarkers, Spectrum Noir Glitter Markers

Paper - Citrus Cardmakers Creative Pack (HOTP), Flowers taken from DCWV sunflower themed paper

Embellishments - Ribbon, Epoxy alphabet stickers, diamante effect butterfly trim, Kanban foiled sentiment

I would like to enter this card into the following challenges (in Alphabetical Order)


  1. Beautiful card, the colours are gorgeous.
    Thank you for joining in with us at Fab'n'Funky challenges this week.
    Buffy (DT) xx

  2. That's some story Mandy- your MIL is obviously a fighter to come through her ordeal the way she has - and you came up trumps caring for her, no easy task I know. You must be so happy and relieved that she's doing so well knowing that your love and care has contributed so much to this happy ending. I hope she continues to do well. The card you made for her is beautiful, thank you for sharing at Crafty Catz this week.
    Chris x

  3. So glad to hear your MIL is on the road to recovery!
    Love this stunning card!
    Thank you for joining us at Polkadoodles Digi Choosday! Jane S (DT) Paper, Pencils & Pretty Things! xxx

  4. What a time you've all had! I know from experience how exhausting it is trying to care for someone while holding down a job (in my case full time). From what I've heard your MIL will struggle with energy levels for many months after having Covid. Remember to take care of you too.
    Your card is lovely and very fitting that it's for her.
    CD Sunday Plus DT.

  5. OMG what a beautiful creation! Thanks so much for joining in the fun at our Make The Cards Challenge! Good Luck and we hope you’ll come back often.


    P.S. This beauty also fits the Yellow theme over on the COLORFUL OPTIONS CHALLENGE . Please feel free to share with us.

  6. Thanks for entering our "3 of Something" Challenge @ Little Red Wagon with this beautiful card. Hope to see you back again soon.


  7. Hello Mandy, my goodness it sounds like your MIL (and you!) have really been through the wringer, glad to see life is improving for you both now.

    Your card is gorgeous - love the stunning sunflower - and your colour is fab.

    Thanks for joining in with us at Sweet Stampin' this time, hope to see you again.
    Sweet Stampin' DT

  8. I'm back again! Still admiring your gorgeous card but this time with my Colour Crazy Craft Challenge DT hat on! Thanks for joining in with us and hope you play again next time.

  9. Such an inspiring story and a beautiful card for MIL's birthday. I hope you all have a happy day. Thank you for sharing with us.
    Jocelyn x
    CD Sunday Plus DT

  10. this is lovely! Thank you for joining us at Sweet Stampin' this week. Sammy-x

  11. \You have been through it, I hope that things will improve for you now,
    This is a beautiful card, love the sunflower image
    Thank you for joining us
    CD Sunday plus DT

  12. Beautiful card design and wonderful colouring. Thank you for joining us at I Love Promarkers Blog Challenge

    Best Wishes Lisa xx


  13. A truly beautiful sketch for this pretty Sunflower! so nicely done!
    Thank you so much for joining in at my Crafty Wednesday April challenge!
    Ellibelle's Corner

  14. Love the blues and yellows in this cheery card. Good to hear that your MiL is improving - well done you for taking such good care of her. Thank you for playing along with us at Sweet Stampin'. Tracey

  15. Beautiful card Mandy, fabulous image and colouring..
    Thank you for sharing with us over here today at the Classic Open Design Team Challenge and best of luck with your entry.

    Chrissy DT  https://classicdesignchallenge.blogspot.com/

  16. Pretty work with nice colours...

    Thanks for playing along with our Challenge at Critter Crazy and good luck!

    Hugs and please come back soon!
    Kleido’s BastelStüble
    *Owner* Do-Al(l) Kreatives
    *Owner*Critter Crazy Challenges
    *List Manager* Challenges for Days
    *DT* Sweet Sketch Wednesday 2

  17. What an ordeal you've been through. I'm so glad to hear your mother-in-law is on the way to recovery, even though it might be a long one. She is very lucky to have you!

    Your card is beautiful, and I'm sure your MIL will love it!
    Thank you for sharing and playing along with us at AAA Birthday! Take care and stay safe!

  18. Mandy, this is such a gorgeous card! Thank you for sharing with us over at Morgan's ArtWorld. Love to see you join in each month.
    ~ Diane CT

  19. Wonderful card, thanks for joining us at Penny's paper challenge. Hugs Ela DT

  20. It's a shame that so many people have been through similar experiences during the pandemic, with no help. How fortunate her daughter took her to a smaller hospital and they cared for her there. It could have been such a different story. You are all to be congratulated on caring for her. I'm sure she is feeling loved and cared for too. As for her card, I'm sure it will cheer her hap it's such a happy card. Thank you so much for joining us in our challenge at Critter Crazy Challenge this week. Good Luck and I’m looking forward to seeing you again in our next challenge.
    Faith A DT

  21. I'm back again with another DT hat on, I still think this is a beautiful and happy card. Thank you so much for joining us in our challenge at QKR Stampede Good Luck and looking forward to seeing you again in our next challenge.
    Faith A DT.

  22. Love sunflowers. Great design. Thank you for sharing your project with us at the Crafts Galore Encore “Anything Goes” April Challenge. Good Luck and hope to see you again soon!

  23. Beautiful creation! Thank you for sharing with us over at World Wide Open Design Team Challenge and best of luck with your entry.
    ~ Sherry DT/Admin xx

  24. Lovely card! Thanks for joining us at Unicorn Challenge.

    groetjes, Ellen

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

    groetjes, Ellen

  26. Super Cheery! Love the colors. Thanks for playing at Creatalicious Challenges!

  27. Love the Sunflowers Mandy! Everso bright and cheery! Thank you for sharing your lovely creation with us at Jan's Digi Blog Challenge. So glad your MIL is improving, now take care of yourself. Hope to see you each month for a NEW challenge.
    Good Luck and Happy Crafting!
    (Owner & Illustrator of Jan's Digi Stamp Shop)

  28. Beautiful creation! Thank you for sharing with us over at Let's Craft and Create. We hope to see you again.
    ~ Sherry DT/Admin xx

  29. Beautiful creation! Thank you for sharing with us over at Morgan's ArtWorld. We hope to see you again.
    ~ Sherry CT/Admin/Coordinator xx

  30. Back to say Thank you for joining us at Ike's World Challenges. Good luck Ginny DT for
    Ike'sWorld challenge
    My Blog As I do Rodos

  31. Such a lovely card...and what a time you have had! Kudos to your family for stepping up and getting her on the road to recovery! Hoping she continues to get stronger and your lives can return to some sort of normalcy! Thanks for taking the time to join us at Path of Positivity in your busy state! ~Katrina

  32. You've had a time of it all and kudos to you and your family for taking care of your MIL in her most serious time of need. I hope she continues to improve and your life will return to normal soon. Your card is beautiful, Thanks for sharing with us at The Jan's Digi Stamps Challenge and we hope you’ll join in again soon.
    Admin for the Jan's Digi Stamps Challenges

  33. Beautiful sunny and vibrant card. Thanks for playing at AAA Birthday, hope to see you join in with future challenges too. Stay safe and keep crafting!

  34. Gorgeous card and coloring! Good luck with your MIL. Glad you joined us at Jan's Digi Stamp Challenge. Donna DT

  35. Fabulous creation! Thank you for sharing with us over at Cute As A Button. We hope to see you again.
    ~ DT Judy

  36. Grazie per aver partecipato con il tuo bel lavoro ciao Elisabetta

  37. What a truly inspiring blog post.I am so pleased that your Mum pulled through and that she has such a loving family around her. Hats off to you. Your card is lovely in so many ways and reasons. Thankyou for coming and spinning the butterfly wheel with me. hugs Mrs A.

  38. I've already visited to thank you for linking up, but have more time now to read and comment at bit more. I am so glad to read that your mother-in-law has recovered and is doing so much better! I can only imagine how hard it must have all been for everyone. I am sure she absolutely loved her birthday card.

  39. Sweet card. Beautiful colors and design. So glad you shared over at Aud Sentiments, Crafty Catz, Colour Crazy.

  40. Lovely colours. Thank you for sharing with us at Aud Sentiments.

  41. A great card - thanks for sharing it with us at Pattie's Creations Challenge.

    Helen x

  42. Lovely colours of choice with the cute image!
    Thank you for joining Creative Moments!
    Hugs from Africa!


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