it doesn’t get better

. . . but it does get a little more bearable somehow. We go on with the routine, the normalness of the everyday, but underlying is the great emptiness that remains, the sadness, that is our loss of this precious man. Tears flow less frequently, but I still find myself caught unawares by the simplest of things that make it seem like just yesterday. The unbearable pain subsides, and just leaves this dull ache where my heart used to be. I don’t have much to say to anyone, it’s hard to act normal when nothing is like it should be. I try to scrap, but it’s hard to find the right words - I have managed a few projects that weren’t so personal and didn’t need journalling. And sometimes I do manage to journal, although part of me doesn’t want to remember this hurt, it helps somehow to say these words.


We sold your boat today, and I was quite unprepared for the depth of distress this caused me. You loved this boat, and the joy of sailing it represented, even though we hadn’t taken it out since Kate was born. You had talked about getting it fixed up to sell, but deep down you didn’t really want to let it go, and so it continued to sit in the shed. We cleaned it up in January, and Phil from the Yacht Club has been trying to sell it for months, so his call to say he had someone interested in it was somewhat unexpected, and caught me a litte off-guard. And coming so close to the anniversary of your death, it came at a time I was emotionally fragile anyway. In a way, I feel that I’ve betrayed you somehow, by selling it. But I know that isn’t so. The practical part of me is glad it will go to someone who who will sail it, and enjoy it as you did, rather than it slowly decaying in the shed. It just hurt to say goodbye to this part of you, this part of your youth that I wasn’t a part of, but which meant so much to you, and was a part of who you were.
Thank you to my friends who still come by here, I truly appreciate your love and care.

December 6th


21 years ago we promised “til death do us part.” It just wasn’t supposed to be so soon.

nothing much to talk about

People keep reassuring me that time will help to heal this terrible loss, but it doesn’t seem to be. These past few weeks have been particularly hard, sad, and difficult to get through. I barely manage to just get through each day, and hate the feeling of just getting through - life used to be so much more.

I am doing a few odd-jobs for some online paperscrap businesses, trying to make good decisions about keeping the farm running, struggling to get back into digital designing, keeping house, caring for the children. Most nights I am too tired and heart-weary to even think of turning on the computer for scrapping, although I have dabbled a little with my paper supplies. I made a little bragbook album for Ray’s Mum (birthday), and am trying to think of some mini-albums I could make for the children. Going through photos is terribly hard, they bring back so many memories of Ray, the things we did and all we shared, reminding me of our awful loss.

A layout I completed for the Weeds&Wildflowers blog challenge.


I had just one shot at getting a photo of your first missing tooth - you haven’t much wanted to have your photo taken since Daddy died, because you say you don’t feel much like smiling. So I am glad to have this one photo, even though it’s not totally clear and sharp, to remember your first gap, the loss of your first baby tooth. I miss your happy little self, I miss your sparkly smiles, and I hope that one day you will feel like smiling for the camera again.

bg paper from Weeds&Wildflowers Believing in you
notepaper from Weeds&Wildflowers Taking Notes
wire word from Gina Marie (blog gift)
fonts - ck classical and Artistamp

a note from me

I still don’t have much to talk about. Our days are much the same as always, keeping house, homeschooling, trying to see a little way ahead.

I have been giving much thought to my blog, and have decided I need to separate my “business” stuff from my personal blogging - I have really enjoyed keeping this blog as a personal journal, and look forward to being able to do that again on a regular basis one day. But I don’t feel comfortable combining business and personal as I have in the past, so I have created a new blog, just for “business” stuff. I don’t like to push sales and kits on the wonderful people who have been loving and encouraging me through this time, but I still need a blog to use as a business tool.

So if you would like to keep up with the Digiscraps by Deb part of me, you can find that here. There is a separate feedblitz subscription in the sidebar at that blog also. And a little welcome gift …

I have finally made Grace’s minibook (she wanted one when I made this one for Kate)

I can’t get it to work here in the blog, but you can see a slideshow here

materials: Maya Road chipboard binder book (6×6inch), papers and bazzill from Lime Tart (November 2006 6×6 kit), heart stamps from Stampin Up (thanks Claire!), flowers from my stash, Making Memories rubon alphas, heidi swapp ghost letters, various flowers from my stash (including lots from the Scrapsadaisy collection I got, yummy), journalling labels I made in PSP and printed onto cardstock, and assorted bits from my stash.

a little hello

Just a little hello, I’m still finding it hard to have anything to say, although I flit around the ‘net and keep up with what’s going on, read blogs, look in the galleries, but I don’t have much to say, the words are difficult to find, but I’m still here, and we’re getting by. I truly appreciate all the messages, blog comments, and emails that come through - you will never know how much your support has comforted and sustained me, and the kids too.

Life does go on, although the days are very bleak without my darling Ray. The horror of Ray’s death is receding some, it’s not so overwhelming most of the time, although there are still times when a wave of terror and loss washes over me. I don’t sleep well, and he is in my dreams, miraculously returned to us, although even in my sleeping consciousness I know it cannot be true. Sadness remains and deepens, and I can’t afford to think too far ahead. I just need to get through this day, and then the next, taking one day at a time. The children miss their Daddy terribly, and barely a day goes by without one of them in tears, wanting him back. We are still trying to get back into some sort of “normal” routine, but there are many extra things that have to be done too, which throw us all out again. 

My family visited this past weekend for combined birthday celebrations - we used to travel down to join them, but just for now I can’t face driving there without Ray, and being away from home overnight. It’s hard to think of celebrating anything without Ray; Josiah turned thirteen without his Dad. Isaiah has lost his first tooth, and is still struggling daily with losing his Daddy. Kate is trying so hard to support me, such a big responsibility she feels. Josiah has really stepped up to the plate, looking for little jobs to do to help out. Caleb, Grace and Noah seem to be managing better, although odd little things still trigger tears for them too.

I’m trying to get back to my online community, but it’s still hard for me to join in (posting or commenting much is too difficult still). I have done a little bit of scrapbooking - working on my Nanna’s photos, which are mostly impersonal, and no journalling to add. I’ve done a challenge or 2, and I’m working hard to create a ”lolly bag” for the Pickleberry birthday party next month. This layout of my neice from this past weekend is for the Lilypad blog challenge this week - Kate took loads of lovely photos while everyone was visiting.


bg papers and scallop edge by me, stamped alpha (MISS) by Michelle Coleman, flower and ribbons by Natalie Braxton, alpha (personality) by Kate Hadfield, title font (little) SP WonderfulWendy

Thanks again for enveloping us in love, you can’t know how much it helps us. Hug your loved ones, tell them you love them, and live every day to the full - do what really matters….

hard times

I feel so numb, and so sad - I live on the edge of tears, ready to cry at the smallest things, but trying so hard not to, to be strong for the kids. Every day I go through the motions of living, but it seems that I’m not really, not without Ray. I can do my chores, answer the phone, buy groceries, hang washing, the thousand small things, but my mind and heart are disconnected.

I am constantly surprised, comforted, and humbled by good people caring for me and the kids, people from our rural community, people from far away in our past, people online I’ve never met who’ve heard about our terrible loss. One day I hope to thank them all personally, but even writing thank-yous is incredibly hard.

Rain falls, the sun shines, days pass, and I hope that one day the hurt will lessen, and I will be able to live again, and think of my lovely husband without this pain.

finding some words to say

I’m having trouble finding the words to say, which is the main reason for no updates. I know people will be wondering how we are doing, but I just don’t know what to say.

It seems that as the first horrible shock is wearing off, the sadness is growing. I miss my darling man so terribly, the house and farm are filled with little reminders of him everywhere I look - his cap hanging in the entry, his lunchbox and thermos on the kitchen shelf, his toothbrush still in the cup in the ensuite, his boots at the back door. So many things to do that Ray used to do - even a simple chore like washing up the dishes after dinner at night was one of his jobs. I missed feeding hay to the cattle yesterday afternoon - it wasn’t my job, and now it is.

The children are starting to be able to talk a little bit about their Daddy, although they continually wish for him back, and mention the things that Ray was going to do with them, or hadn’t done with them yet. There was still so much for us to do together as a family.

Today our bull went to market; most of our lovely breeding cows, so gentle and beautiful, will go next week (as long as some paperwork comes through). I can’t look after cows calving, so will have to raise the steers and small heifers we already have, and hopefully be able to keep the farm going that way. Ray was so proud of our breeding cows, building the herd up, raising good calves. I’m so sad to part with them, particularly as they will most likely go to butchers rather than farmers.

There are so many things that just have to be done, a few decisions to be made, but on the most part I’m trying not to make any changes - for all our sakes. We started back to homeschooling, which gives structure to the days again, and keeps me occupied - I just have to keep busy. We still have family with us most days (Ray’s parents have been here the past week or so, their caravan parked out the front), and local friends are starting to drop around for a cuppa, or just to say hello.

I am just getting through each day as best I can, trying not to look very far ahead. It hurts almost beyond bearing. Thanks to all who have left messages, emailed, sent cards - you will never know how much this has meant to me, and the kids, to be surrounded by so much love and goodness, sustained by prayers, and comforted through this trial.

day by day

Life goes on, one day at a time. That’s the cruelty of death - life goes on, even when my heart is gone. Many difficult things have to be done, awful reminders that Ray is not here. I miss him so dreadfully, my whole being just aches. The children are beginning to talk about their Daddy a bit each day, but often end in tears as the awful realisation hits them again. It’s so hard to try to pick up the pieces of a normal life again, I still don’t know how to start, so we are pretty much still drifting along, doing only what has to be done to keep family and home together, making as few decisions as possible for our immediate future.

We still have family members staying with us most days, it helps to keep us occupied and busy. The worst times are when I am alone, and able to think. I don’t want to think, or I won’t be able to function at all for the overwhelming grief. I know this will become less with time, but in a way that seems wrong too. I am so tired, weary in body and soul. Thank you all for your love, prayers, and practical support - I am aware of being coccooned with love and care, and it really does make a huge difference.

hug your loved ones, and tell them how much they mean to you every day.

layout from May 2005: the years have changed us in so many ways - who could have seen where our journey would lead us? and who can know what tomorrow will bring? words are so inadequate to tell you what I feel, but I trust that my heart will speak to yours and you will know how deeply you are loved.

it’s so hard

we are getting by. just getting through each day, hour by hour. the days are so long, and awful empty for me, without my darling man. the children are much quieter, and tears flow at different times, triggered by a fresh remembrance of their Daddy being gone. our family is standing around us, our little community is loving and supporting us, and I am humbled by the outpouring of love and support from so many friends, near and far.

getting through

“Do not let your hearts be troubled. Trust in God; trust also in me. In my Father’s house are many rooms; if it were not so, I would have told you. I am going there to prepare a place for you. And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come back and take you to be where with me so that you also may be where I am. You know the way to where I am going.”

Thomas said to him, “Lord, we don’t know where you are going, so how can we know the way?”

Jesus answered, ” I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.”

John 14:1-6

We are getting through this dreadful thing. I am utterly devastated, and the children are sad, but we are somewhat comforted to know that Ray is safe in our Father’s house, and we will be reunited one day. The future just seems so bleak and empty without him.

I am overwhelmed by the outpouring of love from my online community. There are so many good people in the world. Our local community is amazing, expressions of love have arrived from the most unexpected places, and my family are cocooning me and loving our children.

As the shock and numbness is abating, the loss of my dearest Ray is growing greater and more fearful. I don’t know what the future holds for us, but we are taking one day at a time for now.