How God Used Floral Design To Save My Life…

Let me tell you about my gift from God…a hobby that gave me such a purpose and drive to greet every day. But first, I had to overcome a lot of obstacles.

When I was twenty-eight years old and first sick with fibromyalgia, it was very depressing to wake up in the morning not knowing how my body was going to feel when I stood up…and I mean waking up "if" I had been able to sleep at all the night before. The question always appeared at dawn’s first light: would I be able to do anything to make my day worthwhile?

Would I be able to drive my children to school? Could I really attend tonight’s basketball game? Would I be able to get in my car and run errands? For a while, no…I couldn't do any of these. Even accomplishing the simplest of tasks around my home, tasks that everyone else would take for granted, was not taken for granted by me. I have been sick for over 30 years with Fibromyalgia and Celiac disease, along with the various other health problems related to these conditions. I’ve chronicled this, along with my business failures and successes, in my book, “My Journey Through Fibromyalgia: Rumors, Ravages & The Rescue.”

For years, as my Fibromyalgia symptoms appeared and disappeared back and forth so many times, I felt like there were two different people living in my body. I tried to run retail shops in several locations. Considering the trying times along with severe pain I faced, I fought with all my might every single day to succeed in providing the finest of silk floral arrangements and wreaths to the most elegant homes in Anderson, SC, and the surrounding area. But, in order to run my business, I always hired more people to work for me than I really could afford to pay; you see, I couldn't depend upon my own body…so I had to depend upon others. There were times when I would have to leave and go home at a moment's notice — or even lie down on the floor until the severe dizzy spell would pass. I never wanted to have to close my shop because of my illness.

Later, after the economy started to change, my husband and I decided we could no longer afford to keep my business open. That was such a hard decision for me. I felt like I was giving up the only thing that had given me purpose — except my children, of course. There were then and still are the joy of my life. Our boys have married wonderful wives who have given us the five most beautiful grandchildren on the planet! I know, I know… just a little bit biased here! LOL

After closing my business, I was determined not to give up. It would have been very easy for me to give in to my pain and despair staying at home all day feeling sorry for myself. But, NO, I couldn't do that! Someone had mentioned eBay to me. Even though I didn't know much at all about it, I began to read and read and read. It wasn't easy, but I figured it out finally and after five or six months, became a power seller on eBay – before eBay began to implode. Now, I am a successful entrepreneur, teacher, writer, and businesswoman, selling my floral creations and educational products from my own website.

This all happened for me because I took a hobby that I was pretty good at and took a chance at making it something more. A hobby is something that makes you feel good about yourself, an activity that you can share with friends and neighbors and one that, hopefully, you are really good at doing – if not, you can learn! And when illness or a tragedy knocks the breath out of you and literally flattens you, that same hobby can be the support you need to climb back up and face your battles.

Floral design gave me joy, value, excitement, a reason to feel alive, and a reason to jump out of bed with such a start in the morning that even I was surprised.

Oh, can you just imagine? This hobby of mine can become your new hobby, too. Even more, this new skill can bring in much needed extra income, if you want to take it in that direction. Maybe you’re a mother with young children to care for and you don’t have a job outside of your home. Maybe you are a widow, who is alone and needs something to keep your mind and hands busy. My heart’s desire is to share this wonderful hobby that I love so much, but you must realize that you will have to accept the joy and excitement that comes with it…at no extra charge! Depending on what you do with this new skill, you may also receive bonuses, like confidence, pride, and some extra cash for your bank account!

You might be a young-at-heart Baby Boomer who needs the sense of accomplishment, inspiration, and joy that comes when you complete your first project with your own two hands – all by yourself! I honestly believe my floral experiences and business skills have equipped me at this point in my life, to teach, encourage, help and inspire you to do more than you ever thought possible.

I can finally say, and truly believe, that I am GRATEFUL for my illness, because God has used it for a greater good, to encourage me to spend time taking stock of my life. I focused on my skills and goals, which brought me to this point in my life where I now understand that one of my strongest goals is to follow God's leading and give something back to each one of you reading this.

What do I have to offer you? I offer you my care, my interest in your lives, my talent, experience, skills, and creative energy doing something that I love, and something that has changed my life in a very positive way. Floral design can turn your life around, too!

Foods That Help me Feel Better

What foods can I eat?
Maybe we better talk about what I can't eat first.

   Everyone wants to know — I get questions and emails all the time saying: What can you eat?  How did you do it?  How in the world did you lose over 110 pounds? 

So, today I thought it would be appropriate to talk about what foods I do not eat because this plays such an important part in living with Fibromyalgia.

The Three Biggest Problem Foods For Me!
Wheat – Soy – Milk

Below You'll Find Some Photos of Foods Which Contain Gluten
But… Unfortunately There are Many More!  

Okay…. okay, I'll admit it.  At first this new way of eating was HARD!  I thought I couldn't do it.  I wondered what I would be able to eat.  Nothing?  Well, that's what I thought as it's what you are probably thinking too!  

   But… OH MY GOSH!  This has changed my life! 

Truthfully, God changed my life through my new "healthy" life style and through the marvelous doctors my husband and I found who knew immediately what was killing me (yes, you did hear me right), and who knew what immediate and major changes I needed to make in the foods I ate .

You see, I was born with Celiac and that is what caused my fibromyalgia.  Celiac is a severe allergy to many – well… most of the foods I was eating when I got sick. As I kept eating them, the sicker I got.

Celiac affects the large intestines.  There are little extensions on the inside wall of your intestines which are called "villi."  These villi stick our and move around to grab hold of and absorb fat, vitamins, nutrients, and minerals from the foods you consume.  With celiac, these villi are flat against the wall of the intestines, so they cannot absorb any of the nutrients you need to survive – to be healthy – and to flourish.  I was hardly surviving at all, and I certainly was not healthy in any way, shape, form, or fashion.

Thank You Lord!  I am as healthy as I can be while still fighting fibro and celiac – as I will for the rest of my life.  I began starting to to flourish at the "young" age of 60…feeling better than I had felt since I was 29 years old!  And, it is all because of what I eat (and some natural supplements). 

These are the foods that I COULD NOT eat when I started this new lifestyle!

NO Gluten (wheat, barley, oats, Aramanth and glue on envelopes – don't lick it!)
NO Lactose (milk, cheese, yogurt)
NO Soy (soy is in everything… even coating some of the medicines you take)
NO Dairy
NO Canned Foods
NO Processed Foods
NO Sugar
NO Eggs
NO Tomatoes – or only very little

I have now been eating this way for almost 8 years.  I have been able to add back some dairy, like cheese on salads, and sometimes in a casserole, or even in gluten free pizzas.  I have now added back an egg for breakfast every morning.  Before the diet, I had a stomach ache every morning of my life.  I didn't know it was from eggs until I left them off…

I do eat bread every day, but it is bread that I make in my $10.00 yard sale bread machine.  Pamela's bread mix which is made from rice flour.  I buy this from Amazon and make it a couple of days a week — because my husband is now wheat free also.  (His arthritis got better when he left off wheat.)  I eat pasta, macaroni, spaghetti, etc. made from rice flour also.  If you were to come to dinner at my house, you would not know that you were eating gluten-free!  We can eat pizza which I make using Kinnikinnick gluten free or Udi's gluten free pizza crust.

 I I now know that I will probably NEVER eat soy again!  Turns out it made me VERY sick.  This really didn't show up until I had been off gluten for a month or so.  That's okay…. I truly can live without gluten and soy for the rest of my life — more than happy to, as a matter of fact!  With some of these other foods, I sneak a little every now and then, and although I don't feel great afterwards, but I am not deathly ill.

Below You'll Find Some Photos of Foods That are Really GOOD for you!


 The above food are great to eat!  Fruits, greens, nuts, legumes and many more options can literally change your life!


If you have fibro or celiac… or even think you have this, try eating as healthy, natural, and organically as possible.  This was not a disease, or even a problem 100 years ago.  Do you know why?  They didn't have all of these chemicals, preservatives, and insecticides in their foods then.  A good rule of thumb is; if you couldn't find that food 100 years ago… then don't eat it now!  Simple, huh?

 The weight loss?  Well, obviously I was overweight from being sick for so long.  I didn't change my way of eating to loose weight.  I changed my way of eating to be happy and healthy and to be able to enjoy my life and my family again.  The weight loss was a plus…. an amazing plus!  When I first began this new way of eating, I went down to an 8 petit!  Never been that small in my life – even as a child.  lol  But, now I have gained some of that weight back.  There are starting to be too many gluten free cookes, cakes, and muffins on the market now which taste REALLY good.  So it is a constant battle for me to leave those off!

Until next time…. think healthy, happy, and be very grateful that you have a chance to change your health and your body just as I did! 

Blessings & Smiles… Nancy  



I’ve Missed You!

I've Been Busy!
I can hardly believe it's been so long since I posted!

Way too much has been going on all at one time, and most of you know when that happens, Fibro flares up.  Well, that's just what mine did.

Let me tell you what I've been doing. 

First, we finished all the last-minute details on my latest wreath-making book: 
"Make Your Own Wreaths"

_SLS2338 - Copy

This book was released just about 6 weeks ago now.  I can hardly believe it, but over two thousand copies have been sold already.  Not only that, but Hobby Lobby has ordered 900+, and Michael's has ordered a sizeable number. 

I haven't seen them in the stores yet, have you?  If you see it, I would absolutely LOVE for you to take a photo of yourself holding this book right in the store and send it to me.  We are going to have a contest where we pick a winner from this group – you may be the one to win a great prize!!


So, After My Book Came Out
I Hosted a Tea Party at our Home!


Everyone had a wonderful time!  We really went all out with tables filled with 'Southern' food!  Over 30 people attended as we all learned so much from our two special presenters.

First there was Sims Pottery.  Stacey Sims and their designer Laura Miller put on an amazing demonstration about a new and different style of deco mesh wreath design.

Then, Lauren Schuman and her husband Tom were here to tell us how they have grossed over three quarters of a million dollars on Amazon in less than two years.


Next, I had to Jump on Finishing My Story:
"My Journey Through Fibromyalgia"
Rumors, Ravages & The Rescue

It is finally finished!  I am thrilled!  I am tired!  I am excited! And… I am a little scared of putting the book about 'me' out there for sale. I'll be receiving the edited copy back from my editor today.  Hopefully it will be out for sale sometime around the first of September.

I hope you are doing well!  I have missed blogging about life, health and loosing weight!  I guess you can tell that the weight part was sort of put on the side for a while. 🙂  Now, I have to get back at it.

Thanks for joining me on my personal blog.  Watch for more information about my latest book.  I may share the new cover design with you soon, and see what you think!




Fighting Fibromyalgia – Loosing Weight – Feeling Better!

So Happy You're Joining Me in My Quest for Wellness!

I appreciate all your comments and emails!  Many of you are following my lead to be your healthiest self! That's AWESOME! I'm thrilled… I am feeling better. I've lost 11 pounds so far. I am loading my body with fresh, stirfried veggies every day – I mean lots of veggies!! Even ones that I'm not particularly fond of because I have found how they can help to heal my body. 

And… believe me, after all these years of fighting this disease, my body DOES need healing. In each of my short video blogs, I'm sharing with you my personal journey. I'm telling you about my failures as well as my successes. 

God gave us bodies to serve Him and do His will in our lives. I want to be strong enough and heathy enough to do just that!  What about you?

Now, I want to share with you one of my favorite recipes. You see, I had really gotten addicted to gluten free chocolate chip muffis. So, every morning, when I start craving those old muffins, I have found my own recipe to replace those. It is sweet because it is filled with bananas, applesauce and a little honey… but, I'm not eating sugar!

Here it is!

Nancy's chocolate chip MuffinsIMG_0792x

  • 2 to 3 tablespoons honey (you can leave this out if you like) 
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 4 eggs
  • 2 tablespoons coconut oil (I used plain applesauce instead)
  • 1/2 teaspoon apple cider vinegar
  • 1/2 cup coconut flour
  • 1/4 cup almond flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon of salt
  • 3 ripe – soft bananas
  • 1/4 cup cashew milk
  • 1/4 cup chocolate chips – or raisins – or crushed pineapple


  • 1/4 cup chopped pecans or walnuts 
  • 1 tablespoon honey 
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 2 tablespoons chocolate chips
    (I use Enjoy Life – no soy)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees

Cream together coconut oil (or applesauce), honey & vanilla until fluffy.  
Add eggs one at a time, and then add apple cider vinegar. Combine dry
ingredients in separate bowl and slowly add dry ingredients into wet ingredients.
Next mash bananas and milk in a bowl – soft consistency and fold in
banana mixture and chocolate chips (or raisins, or pineapple).

Pour or spoon this mixture into lined muffin tins.
Mix topping an add to tops… Bake 15 to 20 minutes in 350 degree oven.

These are definitely YUMMY!!


Blessings, Nancy


Foods to Boost Your Immune System!

Today, I'm Discussing Foods That Fight Disease!

Thanks for joining me for my video blog today. I have been discussing in my past blogs how I want to be my healthiest self. Today we're talking about vegetables and spices that can really give your immune system the boost it needs to fight off diseases.

I love it that you are holding me accountable, and many of you have said you love being accountable to me also. I've received many comments from ladies who just want to feel better. If feeling better means loosing weight, then… by golly… that's what we will do! 🙂

Would You Like to Hear About My Favorite Smoothie?

Here's my favorite recipe – I know you'll LOVE it!Protein Powder - Rice Milk - Frozen Blueberries-r49-r49

Start with about 1/2 to 2/3 cup of almond milk, cashew milk or rice milk

  • Add a handfull of frozen blueberries
  • Half to a whole frozen banana
  • A couple of leaves of boch-choy or spinach
  • One scoop of Protein Powder
    (I like Sunwarrior Classic Protein Powder found on Amazon)
  • Mix all of this in a Magic Bullet or Blender and Enjoy!

If you have some extra, just sit your cup in the freezer and eat your slushy with a spoon later.