We were lucky enough to attend a local workshop with Cori Speiker, The Reset Girl!!  What an awesome day.  She's true to her life goal, which is to be an encourager. Cori inspires and teaches thousands of women every day to be true to themselves and to express themselves creatively.  Be sure to follow her on her website/blog, Instagram, FB, Pinterest. You can shop for TRG products on her website and she also has a line with Simple Stories.  But I'm guessing most of you already know that!

 

From top left box:

1. Cori let us look through her gorgeous planners. What a visual treat! 

2. A gift from Cori -- a Faith-themed TN!

3. Cori & me

4. Christine & Cori

5. Goodie bag gifts & purchases

6. I won that!

7. A6 TN Inserts that I made and gave to Cori

8. What I brought with me to the workshop

9. Another peak into Cori's planner


 


 

This Etsy shop will feature all things related to journals, bookmaking & paper play.  

Hope you'll stop by periodically!

 


I have been so fortunate to have met so many wonderful artists, makers, and crafters - in person and online. Today I'd like to introduce you to three beautiful women who share their talent with the world. I am so inspired and in awe of what they do!  Each has blessed me with their grace and friendship more than they'll ever know, to the extent that they have shared my work on their media platforms. 

 

Thank you, sweet friends!  I am forever grateful and humbled by your generosity ❤️

 

Ali Brown

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MOzq8KfkLq8

(you can forward to 14:45)

www.alibrowndesigns.com

 




Marie Lottermoser

http://stitchintime.typepad.com




 

Mystele Kirkeeng

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=l77YWpFwLS0

www.mystele.com

 



 


Yes, this blog has been very neglected, but not without good reason. We've been kinda busy since January.

 

The main reason - we had a wedding in May!  A very special day for our daughter, Christine and  her fiance Dan. It was a beautiful, magical day for a very special couple whom we love dearly.

(will share more pics when I can figure out how to shirnk the files. . .)


There were months of prep, planning and renovations - many busy and somewhat stressful days and nights, but all worth it!  And it couldn't have been possible without the help of so many of our family & friends.  Some highlights:

 

Tea Party Shower hosted by Auntie Paulina & Venesa


The kids wanted a small and intimate venue for their wedding, so we hosted it at our home.

Front & back yard renovations. . .yes, before our drought woes. . .



 

Dan & Chrissie creating their version of the mailbox from the Disney movie "UP"

 

Sewed buntings and swags from my stash of vintage fabric scaps and trims for the photo booth:

 


And amidst all the crazy, pulled out my easel and paints determined to create a a huge (30x40) painting in their honor, in their wedding colors. which I finished just a week before the big day  . . although I have to admit, painting always calms my soul. . .


I had commissioned a talented artist (who works with Christine) to do this piece. LOVE how this

turned out!  We had it displayed at the entrance to the backyard and I hung it on my vintage bird cage stand covered with ivy. Sadly no picture of that, but I still have this goodie in the living room!

 



We also attended two other very, very special weddings!  This is the McDonald family: Paulina, Venessa (one of Christine's bridesmaids), Christopher, Emily, and Max. Chris & Emily were married in March -- they are family, as Paulina and I have been 'sisters' for over 40 years. Yes, forty. We love them and they did so much for Christine & Dan. In fact,  Emily's mom, Linda, was so sweet to lend us her special plate chargers for the wedding party table that featured vintage china that belonged to our moms! We are so blessed. . .

 

Our dear friends, Meg & Max were married in April.  I feel like a proud auntie - another beautiful, unique event, another Disney-loving couple! 

 

 This is one talented couple -- I could go on and on, but just take a look at their wedding program and you'll understand. . .

 

 

Baseball season - supported our beloved Giants!

 

SF vs. Colorado. Chet & Caitlyn went to several games this season and we're all looking forward to a lot more next year.  Maybe they'll let me tag along. . .

 

Giants vs A's - Chet supported both teams but decided to wear A's garb.
 

Tim Hudson warming-up!  We loved his time with the A's (with Mulder & Zito too)

and will miss him v.v. much.

 

And BTW, this is the only brew we've been drinking since August!!

 

Somehow I managed to make time for paper & paint!  Collage play:

 

 

Pllaying in my journals



Was honored to be asked to partipate in this year's PYT fundraiser (Peninsula Youth Theatre).

This is the painting I did for the event:



And spending time with family & friends. . .






Whale watching with Cindy on a Sanctuary Cruise charter boat in Moss Landing, a historic fishing village located between Monterey & Santa Cruz.  We saw so many whales and hundreds of dolphins - almost a thousand according to our guide and Marine Biologist, Dorris Welch (be sure to look her up!). They swam so close to our boat, it was amazing, to say the least - they are so playful and you can't help but love them with all their sweet chatter. After the 3-hour tour, we enjoyed a delicious lunch in Aptos, did a little shopping, then coffee in Capitola, of course!




Dinner with the Richmond's & Cronkhite-Shaindlin's - our turn to host.

A tradition we started nearly 5 years ago! 

 

 

and now, conjuring up a few goodies for the Etsy shop!



Til next time. . . 



 




 

 


Here we are, ready or not, on the heels of another new year. For many, this is the time to make resolutions. Maybe you’re one of them and that’s great!  I’ve never been big on resolutions, formally, that is. I have nothing against them, it’s really not my thing.  

 

So rather than making this about New Year resolutions, I'd like to share my thoughts as we look back at 2014. . .


1. Look for the Blessing


Good, bad, right or wrong -  don’t over analyze, justify, fret, or gloat about what happened or didn’t happen in 2014. Let those memories and experiences flow. Surrender. Breathe. Accept. Too often we look for the lesson in an attempt to understand or justify why things happened.


I offer a different approach, one that is so simple and less frustrating: look for the blessing. 


Simply put, looking for the blessing in any situation, no matter how painful or difficult, will ultimately bring healing. Your heart will be open to allow gratitude to fill you up.


As for the WHYS, well, plain and simple, those are best left alone. Why? (sorry, that one is allowed)  Did it ever occur to you that when you ask yourself why something happened, you perpetuate the situation and keep it alive by playing it in your head over and over like a broken record. You are trapped in its crippling cycle, eventually attracting similar events your way. You’ve got to accept the past, face it head on and yes, look for the blessing.


2. Take Responsibility


Own.It.  Own your feelings and your part in what happened. Avoid the ‘blame game’ and again, face it head on.  Release all judgement towards everyone involved, including yourself.  Judgement around past experiences keeps you stuck and doesn’t serve you. In essence, ditching responsibility deals you the victim card, and that, my friends, is very paralyzing.

 
You need to find the courage and clarity, but once you do, here's the best part:

the moment you take total responsibility, you are empowered

 

This is gold. It may not be easy, but it’s doable. Taking responsibility is empowering. Period.


3. A Thankful Heart


Your experiences in 2014 has a lot to do with the person you are today.  Instead of regrets, give honor and thanks. Learn to be grateful for it all: the good and even the not-so-good. When your heart is full of gratitude, beautiful things happen to you and those around you.  By honoring past experiences, our energy shifts in positive ways, allowing more joy, contentment and freedom. 

As I was writing this post, it soon became clear that blessings, responsibility and gratefulness aren’t necessarily stand-alone action items. They work together to bring about positive change.


My wish for you is that you are open and ready to welcome 2015 with renewed energy and possibility!


 Blessings and love,

 Char


 




Wishing you and yours a very Merry Christmas -- may your heart be filled

with the true meaning of the season!

 

Blessings,

Char

 

 







Imagine my surprise and delight when I got the news about this

 

Big thanks to Eric Deis, Artist & Webmaster and Dallas Jeffs, Editor, of Artist Run Website.

 

To sweeten the deal, they're going to promote this article/post on December 30th at 1pm PST to their 34K+ fans on Facebook, Twitter, Linkedin, Pinterest and Google+.  Guess it's time for me to finally join Facebook and update that Linkedin page!

 

This is quite an honor and truth be told,  I'm overwhelmed with gratitude.

-Char