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Journal for CollieSmileJournal for CollieSmile


Hi Everybody,

I\'ve talked with a few of you, but I\'ve missed a lot of you. I\'m still getting used to working 4 hours a day and still trying to fit in the same activities that I\'m used to doing! I consider my time on Desktop Nexus more special than ever now, because I don\'t have as much of it. If any of you want to get in touch with me sure fire, send me a PM, and I\'ll do my best to answer it.

By the way, I sincerely thank all of you who have been commenting on my wallpapers. I truly appreciate it. As for me, I have been going through wallpaper commenting withdrawal. I am hoping to remedy that with a couple of big doses of wallpaper comments sometime within the next week or so. I hope that as many of you as possible feel the side effects... :P :D :D :D

About my part time job... I really like it!

It\'s a lot different than I thought it would be. I am doing work on the computer and other clerical work, but, I am also doing a lot of Laser Engraving. It isn\'t hard, and I enjoy it, now that I\'m not worried about it anymore.

The reason I was worried is because I thought that too much of it would aggravate my back problems. Staying in one position for several hours at a time can bother anybody’s back, especially my ornery one. But there are a couple of reasons that running parts on the engraver is actually working out fairly well for me.

One is that I am working out at Planet Fitness. Each workout is like a physical therapy session! There is an excellent trainer on the staff. She\'s given me a great program that is safe to do. I go there 3 times a week before I go to work. (I still have trouble believing this, but I nowI get up at 6AM. My “Night Owlism” is on the endangered species list.)

When I first started laser engraving parts, I was getting very sore. I asked my trainer if there were any exercises that I could do to counteract what I was doing at work. She gave me a great tip, that I can share with all of you!

It isn\'t natural for the human body to stay in one position for hours at a time. Whether you are running machinery, sitting at a desk doing clerical work, or sitting for long hours on the computer at home, here is what you can do:

Stand up at least every hour and reach for the sky! In other words, do a full body stretch! (Or if you are wheelchair bound, stretch as much of yourself as you can.)

It feels wonderful, and I am hooked. I probably stretch at least 10 to 15 times a day now. The first day that I ran parts for 4 hours, I went home dangerously sore. I ran parts for 4 hours last Friday, and thanks to stretching, I went home a little stiff, but I felt okay.

If you walk away with only one thing from this journal post, make it this stretching tip! It has made such a great difference to me and I’m sure it will improve your life also. Try it. You won\'t regret it!

CollieSmile :)


I just wanted to say a quick hello to everybody....

I am so tired....

My new Job is going well. I\'m glad that it\'s only 4 hours a day.

I\'m tired today mainly because of car trouble. My husband\'s car wouldn\'t start... I went to the store he was at to give him a jump....the jump didn\'t work....had to call a tow truck. Much to my relief, my parents were able to loan me a car so that I can exercise and go to work tomorrow, while "Woody" borrows my van.

It took us about 3 hours to get our car problems solved. I have to hit the hay \'cause I have to get up at 6AM tomorrow... :P

I just wanted to let all of you know why I haven\'t been on DN as much lately. I hope to get on a little more often. This was my day to do it though, and I missed it because of all of our car problems.

It\'s past time for me to hit the hay, but at least I\'ve said hello! :D Now I\'m saying Good night....

CollieSmile :)


.......But I freely admit that I\'m glad it is only part time. As far as I know at least. :)

I wasn\'t really looking for a job, but this one came along and tapped me on the shoulder.

I mentioned in some previous journal entries that my family has a business. My Dad got it going in the mid 1960\'s. When it started out, He was a Manufacturer\'s Sales Representative. In fact, when I was in high school, I used to work for him during the summer times, and if I didn\'t, one of my other sister\'s did. There used to be about 4 other people in the company, and they got to take their vacations because of us.

This business has been going on for over 40 years, but it isn\'t the same as it used to be. Gradually it evolved into a laser engraving service. It\'s been into that business since the mid 1980\'s.

The shop manager who has been with the business for at least 15 years is retiring at the end of the month. My daughter is training to take over his position, and she asked me if I would like to learn her job.

She has done everything from running the engraving machines to doing all of the clerical work. They have someone to run the machines, so my job would just be clerical, as far as I know.

A lot of my job will entail working on a computer. It sure won\'t be the same as making wallpapers though!

I talked about this family business briefly at the top of my May 22nd Journal Entry. My parents had been trying to decide whether to keep this business going, sell it, or shut it down. For the time being, they are going to keep it running, and see how it does.

My daughter believes the business has the potential to do very well. I think it does also. Hopefully, I can be part of the solution.

My daughter and I are more concerned about my parents (her grandparents) than we are about hanging on to our jobs. If it is decided that it would be better for the business to be sold or closed, we are prepared for that. Both of us are very fortunate in that our husbands have good jobs. If the company does not continue, we will be okay.

But we are going to give it our best shot and see what happens. I\'ll keep you posted! :D

CollieSmile :)
June 4, 2013

PS. If you haven\'t done so already, I encourage you to read the story behind this very special wallpaper. :)

I hadn\'t thought of that! I guess that wallpaper group is helpful in calming me down! lol I need all of the help I can get these days. :D

I appreciate what you said about quiet moments. Now that I\'ve finally let everybody up here know what is going on with me, I feel a lot more at peace too. :)

Elaine :)

PS. That link to the Greek Dance is super! It reminds me of one of my favorite moves too... It\'s called My Big Fat Greek Wedding. Have you ever seen it? Very warm hearted and funny. :)
May 2013

Hello to my fans/friends, group members, or whoever you may be. I am so glad that you are reading this-- especially if you are someone who has been wondering why I haven\'t dropped by your profile lately.

I\'ve been having some challenging times with my parents. My siblings and I, who live all over the world, (okay, what that means is that one of them lives in Japan) have been working together to make sure that my parents are financially secure. They are in their mid 80\'s, and may need long term care at some point. To complicate manners, there is a family business involved. It has to be decided whether to try to keep it running or close it down.

I won\'t try to explain anymore. The complications are incredible, and would take pages to explain! I\'ll just say one thing more: I am so glad that none of you are stuck in this mess! I wouldn\'t wish this on anybody. :P

All of these goings on are leaving me a lot less time for Desktop Nexus. That is why:

Many of you haven\'t heard from me or heard back from me.

I haven\'t been able to make nearly as many wallpaper comments lately. (Sigh. I love doing that too!)

I have been getting profile comments that I haven\'t been answering like I would like too.

I used to do weekly profile greetings, but that had to go by the wayside months ago. That part happens to be your faults. :P :D :D :D So many of you have fanned me, (and of course I\'ve done some fanning myself...) that I couldn\'t get it all done every week any more. I was planning to do some Profile greetings every week, and eventually get around to everybody that way. But then the "Family Mess" got so complicated and kept me so busy that I haven\'t even managed to do that.

This is to let you know that my heart is here, and I wish that I had more time to check out how you are doing, and what you are uploading, so I can make wallpaper comments... I have to believe that eventually the Family Mess will all get sorted out, and I will have more time up here once again.

I love it up here, and I am very thankful that I have made so many wonderful friends. :D

CollieSmile/Elaine :)

PS. I\'m still hanging in there with PM\'s. If you PM me, I\'ll do my best to get back to you. If you don\'t do PM\'s, maybe you could leave me a profile comment with the words, "Please Answer" on it. I will try.

PPS. I\'ve been feeling like this a lot lately!

And here\'s another wallpaper that I can identify with... thanks to my friend RedHeadsRule/Gloria for capturing my feelings and putting them into a wallpaper! lol

April 2013

I had a terrible case of insomnia last night. I actually went to bed earlier than usual because I had a get together planned with my Mom. But for some reason, I could not sleep until 5:30 AM this morning! I ended up canceling my get together, and going back to bed.

There were thunderstorms blowing through my area. I almost never use my computer when there are electrical storms. One of my sisters fried her computer one time during a t-storm, so I don\'t want to risk it.

I turned on the TV instead. And found myself staring at a chaotic scene in West Texas.

As I listened to the news about the explosion at the fertilizer plant, I thought, "How can this be happening? The Boston Marathon and now this? My heart went out to the people there, but my brain felt dazed.

Then I thought about the wallpaper I made last Sunday: "You\'ll Never Walk Alone: Words for Stormy Times."

I made this wallpaper because of some personal struggles that I am going through. In fact, my first version of it is a plain wallpaper. But I made the second one with the words, to encourage myself and other people as well. All of us have problems that we are dealing with. I thought the wallpaper might help other people too. I never dreamed when I made it how apropos it would be for Boston and West Texas.

Yesterday, I edited the wallpaper & put a note in to the people of Boston Massachusetts. Now here I was (at 3AM this morning) staring in disbelief at another tragedy caused by a serious explosion. (At this point, they don\'t know whether a crime was committed, or if it was simply a tragic industrial accident.)

I\'m sure that the people of West, Texas were following the news of the Boston Marathon Tragedy, and were very concerned for the people of Boston. And then a similar devastating explosion happened to them! :( How sad, and how ironic for them!

Back when the Sandy Hook school tragedy happened I made a wallpaper for the people of Connecticut. At the time, I encouraged some of my DN friends to make Sandy Hook wallpapers also. Some beautiful ones were made. (You can see some of them at this link, and others were probably made also.)

I wish that I could make an encouraging wallpaper for Boston and another one for west, Texas, but I\'m not able to at this time. I have some abstract wallpapers in the works, but none of them lend themselves to the right kind of wall. Neither to the photographs I have on hand. Also, I don\'t use on line images for the wallpapers I make.

Most of all, I am so tangled up in my own problems that it\'s hard for me to think straight. Often getting through the day is plenty for me to handle lately. But....

Maybe some of you DN members could...... :)

If you have a clear mind (unlike me at the present time) and you decide to make some encouraging wallpapers, I would love to see them. It isn\'t just the people of Boston and West Texas that would appreciate them. I think that the whole continent and beyond would!

If you do upload wallpapers for these tragic events, there is even a group that you can add them to. I am so glad that GreenFroggy/Di thought of starting this group. It\'s called Tributes. It was created back in February. It only has about 6 members so far, so there\'s room for more. :D Here is the link.


If you can make a wallpaper for tributes at this time, that is great! If you can\'t, I can sure understand! Since I can\'t make any right now myself, I thought that I would at least get the idea to do so out on DN. That\'s why I wrote this journal entry. Thanks for reading it! :D

CollieSmile :)

PS. If you make one, be sure and post it on my profile. I most definitely will vote it up and comment on it! :D

UPDATE: 2 people have made some Tribute wallpapers already! :D :D :D Maybe I\'ll post them in this journal entry or another one. :)
March 2013

Hi Everybody,

If you happen to be reading this right now, you have probably gotten an Easter Greeting from me on your Profile, or will be getting one soon. :)

I used to give you all profile greetings every week. A lot of things came up in my life, and I had to discontinue them.

I\'ve been dealing with a lot of family issues. My brother was very ill, my parents, who are in their mid 80\'s have been dealing with some legal problems and some age related health problems, and other things are going on too. I\'m glad to say that my brother is really on the mend now, and can eat normal food again. I\'m still helping my parents a lot.

All of the problems that came up with my family turned out to be a wake up call for me. I will probably never be spending as much time as on the computer as I used to. I don\'t look at that as a bad thing though. I think I was too computer-headed for quite a while... :P

That being said, I still want to stay in touch with all of you guys. I will use this journal, of course. But also... I want to start doing profile greetings again!

I\'ve already gotten a start on it, as some of you know. I\'ll be doing it a lot more slowly. I\'ll be greeting around 50 of you a week, instead of all 90 of you in one or 2 days. I\'ll be making wallpaper comments at the same time as I visit, if you upload walls. :D I hope that I\'ll get to say hi to each of you every couple of weeks or so. :)

I\'ll probably "carry" one or 2 of my most current wallpapers with me when I do when I come around.
What I\'m making varies quite a bit these days. Everything from pretty:

to pretty crazy:

I\'ll probably be doing more photography walls soon too, now that Michigan is finally starting to get some Spring Sunshine at last!

Some of you have left some nice greetings and wallpapers on my profile in the past couple of days. Thank you for them! I\'m late on getting back to you on them. Please be patient with me, I\'ll get to them-- After I get my Easter greetings out!

Take care, everybody, and God Bless :D

CollieSmile :)
March 17, 2013

Hi Everybody,

Many of you who are reading this, if not most of you, commented on and/or voted on the "Deaf President Wallpaper" that I made. Thanks to all of you, the wallpaper made it to the front Home page of Desktop Nexus, and is still there as of this writing. Thank you so much for that!!! I wanted Deaf people to have every chance they could to see this wall, and thanks to you, they have been able to. In fact, I have met some Deaf and some hearing impaired people because of this wallpaper, and that makes me very happy. :D

I also want to let you all know that I will be off line from now through Tuesday March 19th. My husband and I are going out of town to celebrate our 30th Wedding Anniversary, which was March 5th. We\'ll leave tomorrow (Sunday) for Frankenmuth, Michigan.

Frankenmuth is known as the Christmas Town of Michigan. There are a lot of interesting stores there, and it is a charming place. It has one huge Christmas Store called Bronner\'s that is open year around. You can read about it in this wallpaper description.

There is a lot to like about Frankenmuth. It does a fine job of celebrating other holidays too, such as St. Patrick\'s Day. Actually it\'s Saint Patrick\'s Day now... sigh. It is 1AM... :P and I still have to finish packing! I\'m glad I\'m not driving tomorrow... lol

Frankly St. Patrick\'s Day sneaked up on me. I didn\'t get any wallpapers made for it! But I just uploaded 2 new ones... and at least one of them is the right color! :D Furthermore, it is for all of my friends on DN. Happy Saint Patrick\'s Day! I\'ll be back Tuesday evening!

CollieSmile :)


Thank you to Betsey Butler who wondered where in the world I had disappeared to! I\'m sure she isn\'t the only one... :)

Hi Everybody,

I have been preoccupied with relatives. In other words, an impromptu Family Reunion of Sorts....

Here\'s a photo of us...

Oops, wrong photo! Let me try again...

Oh well.... you get the idea, right? There a lots of family members in town. They are in from Honolulu, Japan, Iowa, etc.

Everybody has flown in at all different times... It\'s been a bit confusing. I was totally amazed when one of my sisters called from my Mom\'s house yesterday. I thought she wasn\'t due in until the weekend!

I think that my life will be more "Back to Normal" as of Monday, March 4th. Come to think of it however, my 30th Wedding Anniversary is coming up on March 5th. I\'ll have to drop a hint to my husband Woody/John.... :D :D :D

In other news... I have just discovered that I have been running around with not one, not 2, but 3 Fractured Ribs. This DN wallpaper is NOT my Xray, but it\'s the best that I can do.

Fortunately, I\'ve been very careful, and I now know that I must continue to be so. I only have to take pain medication once in a while now. When it first happened, I was taking it around the clock. One thing for sure, when I fall off of a bench, I really mean business! :P (see Feb 7th journal):

That\'s it for now. I\'ve been at my parent\'s house quite a bit -- and I\'ll be going again later today. I\'ve been checking into DN and will continue to do so. Wish I had more time to spend here, but that will change in 4 to 5 days! :D

CollieSmile :)
Feb 24, 2013

Hi Everybody,

I expected to make this post a couple days ago, but I am finally giving up and making it now. I was waiting for clarification on some things, but I have given up on getting it.

Here is the basic story about my brother. I think it\'s mostly accurate, but I wouldn\'t bet my life on it. I don\'t think it is complete either. There is nothing like hospital red tape to keep things confusing. :P

My brother, is now OUT of the hospital, which is great. But...

he went AMA. (Against Medical Advice) I think he was going stir crazy in there.

A lot of family members were worried about him checking himself out like that. I tended to see it as a sign that at least he was feeling better. (I\'ve never heard of checking out AMA until now. Everybody that I\'ve talked to says it\'s an awful idea.)

I think he went back to the hospital voluntarily when his doctors told him that they didn\'t like some of his test results. He may even have gone back to the same bed. I never got a chance to see him back in, so I don\'t know.

Then it seems that the doctors changed their minds about his test results. Or maybe he had additional tests....? Or maybe some other doctors gave the first doctors a 2nd opinion....?

All I know is that he is out of the hospital now. I don\'t think he\'s AMA anymore.

He has lost 60 pounds and is weak as a kitten. I think that he can finally eat without discomfort now, but he has to stick to applesauce, jello, and maybe eggs. As badly as he needs to gain some of that weight back, he is supposed to watch out for any sudden weight gains. A sudden weight gain means fluid retention, and they don\'t want him to retain fluids.

I just hope he can stay out of there! He has a checklist of about 10 things that he has to watch for. If any of them are off kilter he is supposed to check in again.

Nevertheless, he seems to be doing a lot better. :)

Thank you so much for praying for him and me. He is fragile right now, but seems to be holding his own.

As for how I am doing...

I\'ve been having some nagging pains, so a couple of days ago I had my left rib cage X rayed. (See my
Feb 7th Journal) I think that I may have a hairline fracture or 2. I won\'t know until Monday or Tuesday. If I do have fractures, there is very little they can do about it anyway. It just means that I have to restrict my activities for longer. :P :( I miss working out...

As you know, my brother has been through the mill. Also, my 88 year old Dad has been dealing with age related problems. For those reasons, a lot of family members are starting to come into town to see how we are all doing. Relatives are coming in from everywhere from Iowa, Honolulu, and Japan. They are all coming in at different times. It is so confusing that I barely remember who is coming in when. Even my Mom is confused-- and most of them will be staying at her house!

So my time on DN will continue to be sporadic for awhile. If there are any major changes I\'ll try to write in my journal.

I\'m longing to upload some wallpapers ... I have some half backed designs that I am dreaming of finishing. I want to say hi to all sorts of DN friends that I may not have time to say hi to. If anybody is asking about me, please refer them to this journal entry!

CollieSmile :)

PS. Maybe this journal entry is not as confusing as I think it is. But if anybody doesn\'t understand any of it, let me know. :)


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