Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Box contest!

Announcing a Giveaway!!

I am so thrilled to offer one of my little boxes of inspiration as a giveaway. This little sweetie has two darling swallows breezing through the air, surrounded by a solid nest for the resin covered quail egg. The egg is lovingly resting on a bed of soft spring green moss, complete with a little feather.

This contest is for my followers only! You know, the ones listed on the sidebar with your cute pictures. This is my way of thanking you for following me through my travels in life.

And you know what I've been through lately!

I want to thank those of you who have left comments, regarding the loss of my little yorkie, Chester. He was my
studio doggie, my confidant, but most importantly, he was
my best friend.

Today has been one of much reflection. Over the past 30 days, I have learned so much about grief, learning more about how you grieve, what you do to deal with that pain and loss, and how long does it last? Many of you have asked how I'm doing, how I'm coping. And the answer is...great.

What occurred to me today, was that I had never lost a best friend. I've lost parents, many sets, grand parents, many sets. But never a best friend. I still have best friends from junior high, high school and college, thank goodness. But I have never had pain like I experienced recently, when losing my sweet dog. I have even had other dogs, but not this pain.

So what can be good about this? I'm learning it is what you do with the pain that is so important. I would like to share my lessons with you if I could? If you internalize pain, your body becomes broken, somewhere. That has happened. So try not to do that. It hurts, and hurts only you.

Exercise like you did, regularly, or more so. Meditate, if only for a minute, maybe even on the toilet, where ever! But take a deep breath, and don't forget to breathe. I've been saying that all year, then remembered to do it.

Let others help you. Don't block people out. This network of blogging land has been an amazingly supportive group. Thank you soooooo much. I've always tried to be strong, and do everything on my own. What a lesson this has been, the outreaching of kindness is startling, and loving.

Let grief knock on your door. Welcome her in, let her share in your tears while you wrap yourself around the couch and weep. It's okay, that is a natural, human feeling. Don't be ashamed, don't fight it. Don't focus on how many days since you lost your loved one, just let those feelings in when they show up. And when those horribly sad thoughts float up, think of happy times with your loved one, times that made you laugh. Then laugh out loud! Share those stories with friends and family. And if you don't want to create, don't. And don't beat yourself up for not feeling creative. Go with it. Do what you need to do to heal.

I came to another realization that helps ease the loss and the pain. Eventually, I will have another wet nose to kiss, another warm body to hug at night (yes, I am married, but those of you who have animals know what I mean!). When the time is right, it will happen. Chester will never be replaced, but will always have a place in my heart. I've been told that so many times by many of you, and now I believe it.

So this is my longest post ever, hopefully! But if I can bring some comfort to one of you reading this, it is worth it. Chester has been one of the best chapters in my life, and I've enjoyed 12 years of love with him. How can I be sad about that?

So please join my in celebrating Chester's life with this giveaway. It is a form of renewal, spring, life, living, setting one free. If you aren't a follower, please join, it makes you eligible for this box giveaway.

The names of all followers will be put in a jar on June 15th, and the lucky winner will be chosen that evening, Pacific Standard Time, USA.


TesoriTrovati said...

Oh Riki! I have tears when reading this! But really they are tears of joy because you know you have lost much because you loved much. Chester sounds like such a dear one. And to know that he lived a charmed life by your side is the best gift. What joy he brought to you! Thank you so much for the opportunity. To own one of your boxes would be sweet. (And you know that I would really like to gift this to someone very dear to my heart.)
Enjoy the day!
You are my 'something good' today!

Beatnheart said...

You know Riki...you are doing the exact right thing to be doing right now. I have never heard of anyone handling the sad, sad situation that is happening to you right now so well. You are not fighting it but letting the sadness and grief fill you and you are then letting it pass and with each deep breath that you take it will get better...Easy for me to say, my little pals are here with me, but they are getting old(see i can’t even say, they are old) so I know days are numbered but that is true for all of us...Rejoice in the now...embrace this moment...and for you celebrate the lovely little friend that made your life so joyous! Lucky you...lucky darling lil Chester...

Leslie @ Bei Mondi said...

Riki, I am also filled with tears reading your post. Not tears of sadness exactly but of love. You are such a wonderful person with such inspiring words. Chester sounds like a little sweetheart that was well loved. Who says angels can't have fur and cold noses? I believe you have someone special watching over you. :)

stregata said...

Riki - you are doing it right. It is so difficult to lose these friends (mine were cats, but that doesn't make a difference) but it is a part of life. We have to go with the flow of the grief, but it gets easier. Eventually.
Sending big hugs!

Marlene said...

oh Riki..it takes time..each of us has thier own way of dealing with a loss like this..and yes I agree..its differeant when there is a soul connection, as you had with Chester..it feels like a part of you is missing at times.it takes time..you are doing the right thing..celebrate his magnificent life, and in time share all the love you have with another kindred spirit.

Studio Sylvia said...

Sounds like you are handling your grief well Riki, choosing to accept it and taking measures to deal with it. Wishing you happier days.

Sara said...

Riki es lo Importante Recordar Que tuviste la suerte de Que Pasó Por Tu Vida, y dejo huella Una Vida en tu bonita, "Recuerda lo bonito, lo vivido junto un chester, ESO no te lo quita Animos y Nadie. Besos saramanus.

Diane said...

Oh Riki such an endearing post about your sweet Chester. Thank you for sharing your thoughts on you grief with us...I know that wasn't easy. But, I do know you are a kind and gentle soul, and whoever comes to live in your house will be the luckiest little wet nose in the world =))

romantic decay said...

Wonderful post Riki. You never stop missing them, but the pain fades. I'm glad your feeling better.

La Dolce Vita said...

great post Riki! and love your box!!

La Dolce Vita said...

ps... lots of hugs to you, concerning your sweet chester.

sharon said...

Riki, you will carry Chester in your heart forever, and you are so lucky to have loved him. Your insight is beautiful. Thank you.

Charlene said...

Riki my sweet friend & fellow soul sister in pain! Yes, it seems to eat you up doesn't it? The loss of that sweet furr baby. It has been since February that Reba has been gone. Gone from my side but, not from my heart. I still cry from time to time but, not everyday. This is better. She was 13 in January & when they are with you day & night for that long... They are with you forever. I still can't get another furr baby. I'm just not ready. We will know when it's right... I hope!!!! HUGS my sweet friend & I hope that helps. As for Followers... I can't remember if I am already signed up. I THINK I AM but, I can't find your followers. Is it under New Friends? If so on my computer that are is blank & nothing there. I am having the same problem with Blooger/Followers on my blog. I wanted to have a give away for my Birthday but, the Followers is blank & I have gone to the HELP area on Blogger & they say they are having issues & please be patient. This happened a couple of months back. ??????????????? Charlene

Anonymous said...

You are a brave woman, Riki, because grief can take over one's life, but you have allowed your soul to both grieve and to love. I lost my sweet 18 year old cat Libby several months ago. The grief was overwhelming and almost unbearable. Like you I embraced the sad feelings, I meditated and I spoke with friends. The hurt began to be less, the tears were less, and then the celebration of sharing my life with a wonderful companion brought peace and a smile. Chester will ALWAYS be with you. How beautiful you both were able to share your lives together!

Tina Vogt said...

I can't imagine what you are going through. I have a beloved dog. One that has touched my heart more than any other I have had. I can't imagine life without her. Hugs to you Riki.

I have so enjoyed following your blog. I met you a few years back at Susan Lenart Kazmer's class in Seattle. My daughter Lindsey and I sat at the table with you. Love to see your work and read about your travels. Hopefully our paths will cross again one day:-)))

slommler said...

So glad to hear your upbeat tone of voice in this post. This is wonderful and I know Chester will always hold that special place in your heart and in your life memories.
The box is fabulous and I am definitely a follower!!
Love your work!!

Anonymous said...

what a great post. i am glad you are feeling a little stronger. your little doggie will always be with you.


Kim Palmer said...

Wise words for us all there! So pleased to hear you are pulling through and able to smile again! Your wee box is such a treasure Riki. Glad to see you are feeling more creative again.

Cindy said...

Thank you for sharing all of your words of wisdom in dealing with your recent loss of little Chester. You have been a big help to me personally with what we're going through here with Bentley. I'm not so sure I'll be as strong as you are, but I just take things day to day. It's not easy. Your little guardian angel will always be with you.

The Feathered Nest said...

Hi sweet Riki, what a beautiful post!!!! Our family has three precious animal members right now and I DO KNOW that when their time comes to pass on to a better place my heart (as will all of our hearts) will be ripped out. Thank you very much for sharing your feelings and how you've dealt with the loss of your dear Chester....and I love that you're celebrating your time loving him!!!! hugs and love, Dawn

Alice said...

What a lovely post. How sweet of you to do a givaway in Chester's honor! I've lost grandparents, friends, and a host of pets along the way and each requires a different path to healing. Your advise is appreciated.

The little box is darling and I hope I win!

sundownbeaddesigns said...

Riki, So gracious of your to gift away such a lovely box in Chester's honor. Funny how our pets become our best friends...like our children. But I can't help but thinking of the quote "It's better to have loved and lost than never to have loved at all." Best wishes to you during your healing process.

The Joy of Nesting said...

Hello Miss R,

Very good little sister. Always one foot in front of the other,remembering that there will be good days and days of anger accept which ever it is, knowing it's the way to heal.

Your little treasure box of the beginning of new life is the perfect giveaway to celebrate with!!

Pattie ;)
Mazatlan Mx.

peggy aplSEEDS said...

this is a beautiful post and how kind of you to think of bringing comfort to someone who is going through some goodbye. you have a lovely giveaway.

Lynn Stevens said...

Oh Riki, I'm glad to hear your healing from your recent loss, and Thank you for the advice. My little Tiffany (minpin)is getting old and won't be around much longer I'm afraid. Shes my baby as Chester was yours! I know it won't be easy..
On another note how could I not have been following you? that or I didn't see my picture. I'm here all the time you know. LOL.
My blog comments went wonky today and nothing is showing up? Hope I can fix it. Sheesh ya gotta be a rocket scientist to figure this stuff out!

Lana of Honeysuckle Lane said...

Riki ~ I came over from Diana's blog and I'm so glad I did! Your jewelry is just beautiful and I will be sure to look for you in Belle Armoire Jewelry. The giveaway item is gorgeous and I'd love to be entered in the contest ~ I'm now a follower. :)
I am so sorry to hear about your dear Chester, but it sounds as though you are handling it well and are looking upward and forward. My thoughts are with you.
Have a lovely day!

MosaicMagpie said...

I too lost a dear pet of 14 years, she was a confidant and friend. A source of unconditional love that she freely gave. Buried in the backyard, her collar on my worktable, her face in my heart. Lovely post thank you for the advice. I am glad Diane Frey sent me your way today. I would love to win the box.

In the Light of the Moon said...

Riki,I am so happy for you..I know thats seems weird but so many get stuck in the grief and dont know how to get around,through,even conquer it.I have to be completely honest..I have never experienced this kind of pain,so I am not even sure how I would cope...but I am thankful that for your tips and I am grateful for knowing you.

And...if you dont count me in on this Giveaway...your in trouble girl...you know I would just flip if I won one of your beautiful boxes.

Big hugs-Cat

MosaicMagpie said...

Thanks for visiting my blog. Yes I do have another 4 legged friend to take care of. As a matter of fact we have 2. The most recent to join the family came to us dirty, matted, full of fleas and ear infections. A few visits to the vet and he's doing great. He has stolen my heart. I think he was sent from above to help ease the passing of our other dog.

Jessica Moreau Berry said...

oh dear! I am so sorry to hear this, but not sorry that you shared your words with us. I lost 4 animals in just about a years time, and I couldn't seem to explain to anybody how much it affected me.

Your an inspiration to many!

big hugs.... Jes

Katsui Jewelry said...

I am just the same. I am so attached to my dogs...as attached as to humans...though it is different. I just ache when I think you have lost your loyal friend.

We had to put down our twenty-two year old poodle last year. She was a bright dog with so much personality and I had lived with her almost as long as my daughter. It just broke my heart. Several months later, we got Harvey the Rescue Dog. That has been an adventure. We always have two dogs so we also have our sweet Maltese, Sophie. Enough about me. I am just a dog person. I cannot live without them. And some are more special, or closer to you, than others.

Hugs to you. Treat yourself very gently.


Rita said...

Buongiorno Riki,
you gave Chester a great life! I am a follower and I am glad I stopped by. You are an amazing artist. Ciao Rita

mairedodd said...

this was an incredible post... your thoughts on grief and how to live with it are wonderful... you do have to allow yourself to feel it... we are so guilty of feeling like we have to handle everything ourselves... i am so glad that one of your silver linings from this loss was learning what you had gained - support and love, people who really care... life is a cycle - i am so glad that chester got to spend this life with you - someone who loved him deeply...

Katsui Jewelry said...

Thanks so much for visiting me, Riki. I hope your pain is easing...
Thinking of you,

Holly Loves Art said...

Hi Riki,
I found you through Diana and I'm so happy that I did. You have such a beautiful blog and I love your talent! Thanks so much for sharing such a lovely and heartfelt post. The love of my life is my 16 and 3/4 year old darling doggy. I treasure each and every day with him as I watch him aging, going blind, loosing most of his hearing, bumping into walls. He gets a hundred kisses every day and I enjoy picking him up and holding him "just because." I know that the dreaded day will come and no matter how I try to prepare it will be devastating. I rescued Albie at age 11 and I always said that it would be the quality and not the quantity. I’m already so grateful that he is almost 17 years old and for the amazing time we’ve had and still HAVE.

I will refer back to your wonderful post for some comfort.


Charlene said...

OK sweetie got it listed at the top of my today's Post. Sorry I didn't add it (my poor brain does not remember like it used to) but, am soooooooooo glad you reminded me. Hope you are having a good response. Be really careful heading North. I know Diana & you will both have withdrawl. But, I also know you love the area & she will be up to visit soon. I would so LOVE to come see you next summer. Sounds like heaven. HUGS SWEET FRIEND! Charlene

chrissy said...

what a wonderful land you have here.
i came from a sweet comment i saw you leave on robin.s blog.
she was my room mate at an artful journey in february...such a talent, as i can already tell you ARE as well.
i can.t wait to peek around and breath in all your creative wonder.
of course,
add myself to your list so i can cross my fingers and hope this little box is filled with some of my treasures soon....

Anne - Fiona and Twig said...

Awwww, I just love what you did with Chester's picture. It's so true that our animals leave an indelible paw print on our heart, they really do become like our children.


krys kirkpatrick said...

Beautiful, beautiful heartfelt sentiment. I know all that pain leads us to a step toward becoming the human being and even more the spirit we are meant to be. Thank-you for sharing your pain, growth and rejoice in the knowing...we are not alone, we are loved. From wet joyful kisses of a furry friend to a smile from a stranger...we can choose love.

Jan said...

The loss of a friend is so difficult and your outlook on life is amazing!
I'm a new follower and would love for you to visit my blog!

Maija said...

Diana sent me over, and I am sure glad she did! I am know one of your followers.
On a sad note, I am so sorry for the loss of your beloved pet. I understand how special our animals can be.