Monday, August 29, 2011

reflections from Sunday

It's the little things. Along with "new" headlights, I now have a working driver's side window and back door. I will post photos of some projects I've been working on soon, but for now there are other things on my mind.

Yesterday was a day I will never forget. I saw God moving in so many situations.

The sermon at church was about the "weed" called worry. We are doing a series on weeds in our lives that can grow in our hearts and distract us from what really matters. These weeds are worry, riches, and pleasures.This comes from Matthew 6:25-34. To say I needed to hear that sermon is an understatement. I needed it so badly. I felt like God was having a little chat with me over coffee while I wrote down every word.

I also witnessed one of the most raw, pure confessions yesterday. This person was hurting deeply, and acknowledged they had hurt others because of their sin. Weeds had slowly crept into their heart and blurred out the eternal perspective. It was so beautiful to be a part of a church body that literally wrapped their arms around each other and lifted them up in prayer. God was in that room, moving through the hearts of every individual. The walls of judgment collapsed, and all that was left were a bunch of broken people pouring their hearts out to God for healing. It was a night I will remember for the rest of my life.

Yet another moving moment yesterday was meeting a new puppy after a tragic accident a couple of weeks ago that cost the in-laws' dog his life. It was a horrific way for him to go, but I'm so glad they're ready to rescue a new puppy.

Overall, yesterday was just plain emotional!

One thing I know: God is in the business of humbling, breaking, healing, and redeeming. He never leaves us in the pit of despair. He always, always saves us. And when we are brought back into the light of His love and peace, it is more beautiful than we could ever imagine... kinda like my headlights. ;)


Friday, August 19, 2011

it's Friday, Friday...

Good morning to you! I'll get straight to the point: I <3 Fridays. It is my husband and myself's day off... which means relaxing, golf (for him), projects (for me), coffee with friends, and whatever else our hearts desire. This morning, two of his uncles and one cousin came over for breakfast before heading out to the golf course. They were like giddy kids before Christmas, anxiously awaiting their fate; they are playing a scramble, uncles against nephews. This is what the uncles brought with them, though:

my favorite... Cinnamon Dolce Latte.

On another note, we are moving soon! Where, you ask? Into a barn. An apartment in a barn in the country... outside city limits where blackberries abound and fish grow to astronomical sizes in two beautiful ponds. We have been blessed to find a place that will satisfy our love of the outdoors, our budget, and therefore, our savings towards a house next year. :) Hence, these haunt me every time I walk into the living room, waiting to be filled with every passing moment...

Other random things:

seashells in a bowl. No more, no less.

One precious puppy who is devastated that Daddy left him for a round of golf.

Oh! And what I've been doing at work. Speaking of work, I am working in an environment where I get to see lots of kids all day and make fun projects while they wait to see the doctor... and loving every minute.

This is how the project starts:

Make a grid of whatever size you want. I made these two after making my own, because I want the kids to have an option of size, and these ones are actually evenly spaced. After that, I used a stencil to trace around the letter of my choosing ("E" for Everyone who wants to be a kid again should try this). I wanted there to be a contrast between the letter and background without getting out the Sharpie, so I opted for warm versus cool. But you can do whatever you want. Color in all the squares/diamonds in your color choice, being sure to stay inside or outside the lines of your letter... trust me, mistakes can happen when you've been coloring for over an hour. And voila! You will have a new piece of artwork. I love the idea of hanging one of these in a baby's room.

On yet another note, this is what I'm currently reading. Whether or not I have actually tried to make one is another story.

I will leave you with this beautiful quote I found:

Have a great weekend,

Monday, August 8, 2011

storms & sailboats

Today was a beautiful, stormy day. We have not seen rain in a long time, let alone temperatures under 100 degrees for around 50 days. How great it was to not see the sun for once, enjoy a cool breeze, and watch my husband and pup on the porch watching the storm roll in.

Speaking of storm clouds, I have been working on this yesterday and today:

for my grandmother. She loved this painting:

but, as you can see, it is in disrepair.

The original painting, signed by "CA Renee," is brittle, has holes, tears, and nails sticking out of the sides. I really have no idea how old it is. My mom owns an antique store and didn't have the heart to get rid of it (or sell it), and there's no telling where it came from.

To be frank, I felt VERY weird copying this person's painting. I feel like I committed a cardinal sin that my college professors would shun me for, but like I said, it's for my grandma. She needed something over her mantle, loved this painting, so I recreated it. What's odd is that no painting I have ever done has been this easy. Perhaps it is because I felt a connection to the original artist, felt like I stepped back in time onto an island overlooking the deep, black sea. It could also be that this is the first "real painting" I've done since I graduated... last December. I got really burnt out on painting for awhile, and a little bitter about some things at school. All the pressures of trying to please professors who had completely different beliefs, opinions, and backgrounds from myself made for one big pile of bitterness and no desire to paint. This painting was a turning point, and maybe recreating someone else's image made that transition a little easier.

Back to my grandma. She lost her mother last Friday, so I thought now might be an appropriate time to give her the painting I had promised a while back. Hopefully she likes it, despite its melancholy-ness and neon sea... a little different from a discolored, hundred year-old original.

By the way, sorry for the horrible images. I took them from my phone... don't know why. :)

Have a wonderful evening!


Sunday, August 7, 2011


Spent all morning at church worshipping, fellowshipping (of course that's a word), and soaking in the message. God is so good. One of the songs we sang this morning is called "Awakening" by Chris Tomlin and the lyrics really hit home with me right now:

For You and You alone
Awake my soul, awake my soul and sing

For the world You love
Awake my soul, awake my soul and sing

I hear Your voice and this is my awakening

A lot of times, like lately, I realize I have been walking through life in a state of complacency. What's worse is that I don't see it until I feel really dry and fragile, like a plant with no water. I want to just absorb God today and all that He has to offer, not for selfish gain, but to be able to fully live. When we are fully alive, we shine a little brighter in this dark world and have the opportunity to share His love with others more freely. By accepting and being filled with His rich love, I am saying, "I trust You completely." Awaken me.

Off to clean the house and get started on a project that's been brewing for over a year. :)

Saturday, August 6, 2011

new beginnings

In recent weeks, I have spent hours upon hours looking at others' blogs concerning art, design, and life in general. It has inspired me enough to jump back on the blogwagon, so here I am. I will use this as a "dumping ground" for all my wild thoughts, ideas, and anything I find inspiring. I figure it will help me to collect my jumbled thoughts and turn them into something that might actually make sense. Hopefully it will inspire you as well!

A little bit about myself: I am a recent graduate with a bachelor's degree in Fine Arts and a focus on Studio Art. I enjoy oil painting (although never seem to have the time), creating jewelry, and painting furniture. Things that make my heart go pitter patter: my husband, vintage bicycles, old houses, and a good chat over coffee. I also LOVE bargains, and will pretty much never pay full price. I love children and their beautiful imaginations, and hope to someday have a few of my own. I am a follower of Christ, and desperately want for others to experience His deep love for them.

Hope you enjoy my blog and leave inspired by things that inspire me. Feel free to leave comments, look around (although there's not much yet!), and please link back to me if you use any of my words or photos.