NEW Greeting Cards listed in Knox’s Shop


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I just added some NEW cards to Knox”s little Etsy shop.  I began the shop to raise money for  medical research back in 2011 and have kept it going in Knox’s memory, and in honor of all the beautiful children with Cockayne Syndrome around the world.

These cards are really unique, made with designer papers and accents. One set has 3 “Thank You” cards included, and the other set features 4 all-occasion cards. All the cards are blank inside, waiting for your personal message. They come with matching kraft envelopes, and will be shipped to you, along with a small information card on Cockayne Syndrome. dscf5836 dscf5837 dscf5839 dscf5840 dscf5849 dscf5851 dscf5854 dscf5846 dscf5857 dscf5856Please consider purchasing hand made greeting cards or original art this holiday season.

All proceeds are sent to medical research for Cockayne Syndrome. Thanks for stopping by!

 

*Music on the player: “Bobcat Pretzel” by John Powell

 

Cockayne Syndrome: A Loving Nature is a Symptom

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It was my birthday last month and I received a priceless gift:

All the videos from Knox’s life on DVDs!   No gift could equal this.

In this stage of grief, watching the happy times we had with Knox is a great comfort. I love watching each and every video, no matter how short.  I watch videos of Knox often and late into the night.

Now I can pop in a DVD and gaze at continuous, chronoligical footage of him on the big screen: my little precious boy with his cute glasses, spikey hair, and rare syndrome most people have never heard of.

But there’s something about the syndrome I’d like to share with you. It’s something that I’ve only recently been able to embrace.

A loving nature is a symptom.

Yes, it really is. A loving nature is considered an actual symptom of the disease.

Dr. Neilan of Boston Children’s Hospital acknowledges this in the documentary “Love Has Wings” (at approx. 23:40) saying, ” Children with Cockayne Syndrome have a very friendly personality, which almost seems to be a characteristic of the disorder.”

How did I miss how remarkable that is?

Admittedly, I could not think about much when Knox was with us. I was so angry at what was happening and I could not accept CS as a blessing while Knox was with us. I remember one of his specialists advising me to consider how preferable CS was to others illnesses shortly after diagnosis.  I thought he was a nut!  Preferable? How could CS be preferable to anything? The diagnosis was terminal, with a lifespan of only 5-7 years. I could not comprehend what the doctor was trying to say.

I had always thought of symptoms as purely negative things. A ‘symptom’ was something in the body not working correctly. Truly, CS children do have severe and heartbreaking symptoms and that can’t be denied. But the symptom I remember most when I think about Knox now is not his blindness, deafness, microcephaly, or neurological deterioration, but his loving nature.

I look back and watch the videos of happy days and there it is!  In every frame captured from his life I can see it clearly: that sweetness of CS.

How could I have been so blessed?

I would’ve chosen life and health for him, but I wasn’t given that choice.  And that still bothers me. My mood can turn dark quickly when memories of his suffering re-surface.  Sadness can still stop me in my tracks and some memories can still make me feel like I can’t breathe. It’s awful.

I’m reminded of something the old Protestant preacher, Jonathan Edwards, said:

“The same sun that causes the brightness of the day at noon, causes the shadows at 3 o’clock”.

I still don’t understand why it happened, but if the shadows had to fall, I’m thankful God gave me Knox. He was a gift in the greatest sense of the word, and it’s my prayer that his loving nature continues to shine through in each video, in each memory, and in my heart.


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“Ducks at Sunset”- Art Activity for Kids


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I found this really great pop-art piece by artist, Walt Curlee.  I loved the colors and the simplicity of the design.

It’s not always easy finding inspiration for my young artist, but this was perfect.

I printed out a sample of the piece as a guide. He picked out the the colors he saw in the background. Using watercolor crayons, he began to draw the sunset…
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Then he used his water pen to blend the colors into a beautiful sunset of pink and purple….

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Next, he practiced drawing the shape of the flying ducks.  It’s hard to get them to look right!

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He got a bit frustrated, so I let him get a feel for drawing the shapes by tracing some of them. This helped!dscf5594

After he was comfortable drawing the ducks, he took a pencil and drew the reeds, leaves, and ducks. Finally, he filled in all the shapes with a dark gray brush pen.

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I think he did a great job! This is my third young artist to attend “Mom’s Art School’, and we’re having a great time experimenting and learning new techniques.  Next week, we’re going to try to paint some trees with faces in them.

Thanks for stopping by and Happy Fall.     ~Scarlett

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“Medieval Lullaby”, a Hand Carved Stamp

 

 

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The first time I tried to carve rubber, I created this owl stamp.  It was harder than I thought, so maybe that’s why I’ve waited so long to try it again.  Here’s my second attempt! I chose this pencil drawing from my sketch book, cut it to the size of the rubber, and transferred the design to the rubber with transfer paper and pen. Here are my tools, which aren’t that impressive. You can find Speedball carving set at any craft store and I had a few various x-acto type tools to play around with.
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I’m sure there are great videos about carving stamps on YouTube. I would never make a video because it would put you to sleep. It’s slow going!

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Half-way through, I decided to add a tiny unicorn in the background.  
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My best tip: Ink your stamp a few times as you go so you can tell what remains to be done. Here is an inking I did to check and see what looked right, and what needed more work.

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Inking it in black and stamping it on scratch paper can help you see areas that need work.

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This is one type of art that I love to do, but I need a lot more practice.  Do you find that once you’ve tried a type of art making and enjoy it, the first things you want is better tools? I need a carving tool about two sizes smaller than the smallest one in the Speedball set.  Maybe with pumpkin carving season at hand, I’ll find one!  Thanks for stopping by!

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*Song on the player is “In the Beginning” by Fahrenhaidt