Saturday, May 29, 2010

perfect for Memorial Day weekend....USAFA Dog Tags for Moms (and whoever) update!

Remember these?


I just received this in my Inbox.....

That's the brand spankin' new 2nd Lieutenant Shelby Judd

Surrounded by his proud mommy, sister, auntie and grandmother.

Way to go Shel.

And on this Memorial Day weekend I'd like to thank anyone who has ever lost someone in service to our nation.

Anyone who has ever served, or is serving now.

You who protect the Freedom we take for granted.

Thank you.

A special thank you (and shout out) to my son serving in Afghanistan right now.
SSgt. Dustin Charles Johnson

Who is (like so many others) separated from everyone he loves.

Living in this....
For me.

If I had had my way, this war would never have been commenced; If I had been allowed my way this war would have ended before this, but we find it still continues; and we must believe that He permits it for some wise purpose of his own, mysterious and unknown to us; and though with our limited understandings we may not be able to comprehend it, yet we cannot but believe, that He who made the world still governs it.

Abraham Lincoln
Oct. 26, 1862

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Monday, May 24, 2010

so many sweet blessings

I've been *gone* for a while - my apologies.

I'm back now, and I want to share a few stories blessings with you.

First ~ I was contacted by my friend Marilyn again.
You may remember her from this. 


She recently ordered one of Dennis's fabulous churches for a Mother's Day/"Homecoming" gift for her friend Candy's daughter. She said a group of friends (they call themselves the Ya-Yas) were going in together on this gift.
Within hours Candy contacted me about ordering one of my nest necklaces for the same daughter.
Candy told me that the moment she saw the necklace on this blog she thought of Sara, her daughter.
So I got to thinkin'....what's so special about this young mother?

I'll let Sara tell you in her own words:

"After struggling with infertility for many years we went through 2 rounds of IVF and finally became pregnant with twins. One twin died very early and then I carried our first biological (I have step children, too) child – a daughter named Isabelle. At about 29 weeks into my pregnancy we learned that she would probably die. I carried her to full-term and delivered her joyfully surrounded by family and friends. She was beautiful. She died about a day later shortly after being removed from life support. We never learned what was wrong with her. She was and is a huge blessing in our lives. We try to incorporate her into our family life as much as possible. One thing I have started to do is collect her name written in the sand from places all over the world – as family and friends and friends of friends travel they have sent photos. I am going to put a little book together when I get a lot of them.
I ended up getting pregnant with twins through another transfer of frozen embryos from Isabelle’s IVF cycle. I went into premature labor with them at 22 weeks. I stayed at Sacred Heart for 99 days (with multiple complications) and delivered two boys (Micah and Liam) on Halloween – two years to the day that I found out I was pregnant with Isabelle. So my three very precious eggs are Isabelle, Micah and Liam. Every time I see three things I think of the three of them – especially eggs!"

Then I asked Sara about her relationship with Marilyn.

And who in the world are the Ya-Yas?

 This is what she told me:
"A group of women ‘doing life together’. Named after the movie the Divine Secrets of the Ya-Ya Sisterhood. They are lifelong friends. Some of them like my mom and Marla have been friends since childhood. Some of them like my mom and Marilyn have been friends since I was a tiny little girl. The other three – Joyce, Eunice and Bridget lived in the neighborhood I moved to in the 5th grade and had been good friends for years. It was the type of neighborhood you dream of living in where the friendships grow deep, there were progressive dinners, street dances, neighborhood parade, etc… and everyone becomes like family to each other sharing in the beautiful times and the tragedies that always seem to unfold."
Interestingly enough, of the 6 Ya-Yas in the photo 4 of them had experienced great loss with their own children – miscarriages, stillbirths, 3 month old death and the death of an 18 year old. Some of them have had multiple losses – not just one. They were a huge support to me during my pregnancies and even relived some of their own journey when I was living the worst of mine. The difference was that some of them never got to hold or bath or name or bury their babies or talk about their losses all that much.

And what's this "Homecoming" all about?
We live in an old 1926 house and it was in great need of repair. We were doing some restoration projects and I was concerned about lead in the house with our babies. I had them tested and they had been exposed to lead already. We moved out of our house within 5 days to an apt with these two precious little 18 month old guys to do some safe restoration on our home. One thing lead to another and we restored everything! We were living in the apt for almost 3 years! We just moved back on December 18th of last year! So the homecoming was a celebration of us moving back to our home!

Sara ended our cyber *chat* with this:
Sara – mama to 6 children – 3 by birth, 3 by choice – Meggan, Beth, Evan, Isabelle, Micah and Liam

The mention of my child’s name might make me cry. Not mentioning my child’s name will surely break my heart!
 Author unknown.

I just love that through this little business I am honored to meet such wonderful women and to hear their stories.

I am blessed.

Finally, I am pleased to announce the birth of.....drum roll please......

Corban Sebastian Lewis
Born: 5/10/2010
9lbs. (!!!)
22" long

I am told he loves his new room.
Now it's time for me to pack my bags and go meet this new little bundle of joy....

...and to return to my attic where I am working on some fun, NEW designs that will be going with me to this:


Thanks for stopping by - stay tuned for more about those new designs....

Monday, May 10, 2010

waiting for Seabass

Today my daughter Jaime's baby boy is officially 10 days overdue.

To distract/entertain myself I thought I would share his wonderful *new* room with you.

Jaime and Jacob didn't want a nursery that was too "theme-y".

They found all furniture on Craig's list or already had it and re-purposed it.

While we were in California Dennis and I spent a day helping to pull this room together - it just goes to show you that you don't need to spend a ton of dough to create a unique artistic and peaceful space.

This chair was reupholstered in a cheerful yellow gingham.
Office furniture re-purposed and filled with inexpensive canvas catch-alls.
The little rocker was a gift from Jacob's office.
Dresser found on Craig's list - painted and transformed into a changing table. (a little surfboard wax and those sticky drawers were gliding in and out like new!)
Prints are colorful concert posters that had been in their old livingroom.
This shelf was made by Dennis for Jaime many years ago when she lived in San Fransisco.
Several years ago we remodeled our guest cottage. Jaime was the first to move in and she wanted a cowboy themed bathroom - I commissioned my son Dusty's best friend, John Stepanian (who had the gift of bending wire) to make this from barbed wire - I'm so glad she saved it!
Jacob's contribution - he and Jaime had seen something like this in a magazine - for lots of $$$.
Engineer Jacob said, "I can make this" - and he did!
Love the different colors and patterns.
And Jaime had seen this idea somewhere and said, "I can make this!" - and she did.
Better than the original! cute is THIS?!

Jaime remembered those silly battery-operated fish plaques (you know, the ones that sang?)

...a slab of wood from Michaels, a little felt and....voila!

Remember this from the shower?
Dennis's gift to his newest grandson.

And finally you may or may not know, Jaime and Jacob took a year-long sabatical from their jobs to travel the world.

The last six months were spent in New Zealand - which is where they picked up this....those mirrors are cut in the shape of New Zealand.

The next time I write, this room will be filled with the sweet sounds of new life....

Til then ~ love and blessings,

Thursday, May 6, 2010

easy last minute Mother's Day project...

I just came across this photo album I created for my Nine Ladies lunch group a few years ago.

My friends absolutely loved this little party favor, and I thought it would make a fabulous Mother's Day gift.

I got the idea from this Martha Stewart wedding project.
Back then I thought it would translate nicely into a sweet girlfriend gift.

Today I think it would be a great Mother' Day project!

All it takes is some cardstock, a ruler, an Exacto knife, some photo corners and...

 a handful of photographs.....
I had been taking pictures of my friends at every luncheon for a few months until I had exactly what I needed/wanted....
this was back in "99....I didn't have any fancy-shmancy digital camera or photoshop on my computer....

heck, I'm not even sure I had a computer then....
I had to actually go to a store(!!!) and have these developed into the warm sepia tone wanted.

I used nubby watercolor paper (because I just loved its texture)

Then I used those old fashioned photo corners to mount each picture to its *page*.
drum roll pleeeeeze.....

ta da!
If you make yours and fill it with family photos your mama will positively melt.

I guarantee it.

Happy Mother's Day!


ps: a special shout out to my baby girl Jaime who is hoping to celebrate her very first Mother's Day this weekend.

she's five days overdue.

stay tuned......

Monday, May 3, 2010

what a show!

Well I have unpacked and cleaned the trailer, done all the laundry, and have gotten used to sleeping in my own bed again.

It's about time I shared some images with you from the Remnants of the Past Vintage show last weekend. It was a spectacular weekend, that started with a vendor dinner on Friday evening.

The vendors spend Thursday and Friday setting up, and as a gift to us all, Judy Watkins (the amazing woman who started the whole dang event) and Judi Powers (the amazing woman who owns the property) throw a lovely lasagna dinner for all of the weary folks who are selling their wares at the show. The last thing you think about when you are busy setting up is what you will do for dinner - so this is a treat! It's also a GREAT opportunity to visit with each other and to network - friendships have been developed through the years at this dinner.

here are my friends Judi and Eddie who do all the cooking...
just love those two.

the setting.


the bar.
to die for.

the warm up....

check out this aDORable tray filled with individual crudités.

couldn't be cuter.

Here is a slideshow put together by the fabulous Jenny Malott that really captures this special property and a magical evening...

(again, if you want it full screen you must double click)

on to the show...

The weather was fabulous. Country Living Magazine was there all day (they were at the dinner the night before too) and spent the entire day capturing the sights and sounds.

as the customers arrived they received this card - a list of vendors (and their websites) on the front and a map on the back.

sheer genius.

so here is our booth.


now on to some of my faves....

Blue Canoe Reloaded

they made their own canvas tea-stained top for their booth.

a driftwood mirror.
an ancient spring-loaded nail gun.

I told you about Patti Kodenko here - this time I remembered to take pictures of her mosaic work.

and I am sure you remember Carol Smithback, aka The Pumpkin Lady. (that's her partner in crime Charlotte)
this is what she does in the springtime...
a lovely farmer's market.

toooooo cute!

citrus from the surrounding orchard.

she takes junking to a whole new level.

she also happens to be delightful.

and she taught a class in making these lovely fairy gardens....
proud student Debi and her masterpiece!

and once again,each vendor received one as a gift...

Here are some new friends, Deb and Bob Kennedy of Retreat Designs.

they came all the way from an island off the Washington coast with this:

beautiful treasures.
I first met them at the Farm Chicks show - they will be back there in June - stop by and tell them Pammy sent you.

I will close this post with a few more random pictures of the day.


I know this was a long post...thanks for hanging in there with me.

I leave you now with this de-LIGHTful parting shot....
now THAT'S a chandelier!