Odds & Ends

It’s been a while since I’ve written, but it’s been a pretty busy summer. One of the best things that’s been happening has been my and Lindsey‘s Etsy shop. Starting today, and lasting through this week, we’re offering a 20% off discount to celebrate our one month birthday!

Enter the code ONEMONTH when making your purchase!

 

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On a separate note, I discovered something really great today. It was one of those great discoveries that nobody really knows about. So I’m going to tell you. If you know me, you know that I have a passionate love for antiques. I love to find old things and give them new life! Thankfully, the south recognizes the greatness of antiques, but sometimes, antiques can get a little bit pricey.

I drive between Madison and Athens quite often when I’m visiting Ben’s family or when I’m babysitting in Bishop. The road that I travel is one of my favorite roads to drive on. It’s simple and peaceful, and there’s a few little places along the way that I think look adorable and intriguing.

Today, when I finished babysitting, I decided to stop by this little junk store called Reed’s Odds & Ends. It’s located right between Watkinsville and Bishop, so only 15 minutes away from Athens, if even that.

ImageYou can’t beat clean restrooms, right?

When I went in, I knew right away that I would like it. It’s the kind of place where you can walk in and know who “Reed” is within seconds. And he was a cute old man. He was watching TV Land. HELLO. This place was filled with amazing stuff! I left with some crocheted doilies, a couple of old post cards, and two amazing blue mason jars. They are the best. I definitely think it’s worth the trip over to Bishop to go to this adorable little hole in the wall. ImageImageImageThere’s still more to discover between Athens and Madison.. Thomas Orchards, where I plan to buy some peaches, the Farmington Depot Gallery, and a pottery shop in Bishop. Hopefully I can knock em all out before summer is over.

Etsy Find: Amaginarium

ImageI recently saw this amazing USA cork board on a blog giveaway, which I immediately entered, and did NOT win.. because Lindsey did! But I couldn’t let this one go. So I went ahead and ordered one, and I can’t wait to get it in the mail!!! I also ordered some cute little arrows to pin on wherever I have been.. or wherever I hope to be. Who knows?

I hope you’re having a wonderful week!

 

 

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Summertime

It’s hot out, y’all. It’s getting hotter everyday. Why am I not at the pool getting a tan?

Last summer I wrote about resting during the summer since none of my initial plans worked out. I was worried that it would happen again this time around, but it’s actually quite the opposite. I don’t know how it happened, but I have managed to stay busy almost every single day of summer. So far. I have only managed to carve out one day to lay out by the pool! That’s just an outrage.

But you know what? Being busy is rewarding. I work almost every day of the week for a company called Plant Partners. They supply the flowers and other plants to the garden centers of Wal-Mart. So, what I do is, I put on this hideous lime green vest that says “What’s Growing On?” on the back, I lace up my heavy duty boots, and I hang out in the garden center all day long. I’m supposed to be unloading shipments and rearranging things to make it look more beautiful for the customers, but a lot of times, those things have already been done and I come with nothing on the To do list. But overall, it has been really rewarding. The Wal-Mart employees are extremely sweet and cool, and I get to hang out around flowers all day! And that’s pretty therapeutic, even if there are psychotic birds swooping down from the beams above.

The Etsy shop is off to a good start. We’re really trying to not get quickly discouraged. The first day, we had a solid amount of orders. Since then, it’s quieted down a lot. I think both of us wanted to freak out and start worrying that this was a mistake and no one wants to buy our stuff. But if we gave up now, we wouldn’t have been in this for the right reasons. Therefore, we carry on!

IMG_3695I just love Steel Magnolias so much. There are so many quotable lines in it. I was just trying this out to see if I could do the blending of the two colors in my letters. But now that I think about it, why didn’t I blend blush & bashful? 😉

I tried making some bridesmaid cards last night to possibly sell in the future. What do you guys think? Lindsey and I agreed that we need to create things for our target audiences. People around my age are getting married. People her age are having babies. So now these things are in the works.

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What’s on everyone’s summer reading list?

Somehow, even though this summer has been one of my busiest ever, I have managed to get a lot of reading done. My love for reading has been reborn again.

Here’s what I’ve been reading:

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1. Jesus Is by Judah Smith. I pick books to read based on a couple of things. One, I always judge a book by it’s cover. Who doesn’t do that? I’m sorry, but all of these books have great covers and all of them are awesome. And two, I take recommendations from people who I think are cool. And I definitely think Lauren is cool. She posted about this book last year, and I was immediately attracted to the cover, so I bought it. Yep. But guess what? It gives the coolest perspective on who Jesus was and is as a character. Judah Smith is a down-to-earth writer. I read it last year and had to re-read it again this year. And I never do that.

2. Bread & Wine by Shauna Niequist. This was definitely a keeper. I took this one from a recommendation by a girl whose blog I’m kind of obsessed with. And her name is Rachel as well! The book is so beautifully written. It’s really a collection of stories of how love can happen around the dinner table and how community is centered around it. I was hoping for more references to Jesus and different stories of him gathering around the table with his followers. But it was still inspiring, none the less. It’s also a cookbook. Pretty cool.

3. Freefall to Fly by Rebekah Lyons. This is definitely my new favorite book. It was another recommendation by Lauren (she clearly has amazing taste in books!), and just a few pages into it, I knew it was going to impact me. It’s about finding your gifts and living in the present instead of trying to push things away to get on to the next step in life. I don’t know about you, but I’m very guilty of that in my life right now. Everything seems so temporary to me that I have just been trying to rush through it. So often, I find myself thinking things like, I’m just ready to graduate. I’m just ready to move on to what’s next in life. If I just get there everything will be fine. Nope. This book encourages readers to pray for God to keep them in the present and serve Him where we are at. It’s definitely one I’ll have to read again soon.

4. Loveology by John Mark Comer. Once again, a book recommended by some friends who were telling me about how they were going through this one in a Sunday school class. I don’t think people realize how seriously I take book recommendations. If someone mentions a title and I think it sounds interesting, it’s very likely that I’m going to research it and probably buy it. There’s nothing like a good book! And this one is really good so far. It’s about God, love, marriage, and sex. It’s perfectly blunt, just the way it should be. I definitely recommend this to anyone who has questions about these things!

What are you guys reading this summer? AKA give me some ideas for my next one. 🙂

 

 

Coast to Coast

Some exciting things have been happening lately. It really all started with my friend (who happens to be Ben’s sister) Lindsey. We have bonded over our love for crafting since the beginning of our relationship, and we both happened to share the same lofty goal of creating our own Etsy shops. We even joked around about creating one together someday, maybe when we were living in the same state again rather than on different sides of the country. But a few weeks ago, she texted me and told me that she felt like God was telling her to act on this now. I told her we should go for it. Something about it feels right. I have the tendency to have great ideas that I talk about and dream about, but am constantly saying that it’s not the right time for that. It would succeed more in a few months. It would be too much to handle right now. But with Lindsey’s enthusiasm, I realized that there truly is no time like the present. So we’re currently in the process of creating an Etsy shop that will sell watercolor prints and greeting cards with different designs and lettering.

We’re calling it East West Design Company. Lindsey lives in the west and I live in the east. I think it’s just kind of awesome.

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We really don’t know what we’re doing, to be honest. We’re nervous about failing, but excited at the possibility of succeeding and this becoming a bigger thing. We’re just learning as we go, all while living 2500 miles apart.

A cool thing that I came across in God’s perfect timing was a blog called Life Lived Beautifully. In her post from today, she gave the exact encouragement that we needed.

I am here to write to you, struggling business owners, big-dreamers, entrepreneurs with large ideas and small funds, that owning a business isn’t about success, followers or money.It is about the glory of God and becoming a woman after His heart. It is not about building self-esteem and accomplishing great things to put on your resume. If this is your purpose, you will quit a month or two later when the business doesn’t grow exponentially and you feel extremely vulnerable after putting your heart out for the whole world to examine. It is about greater things than mere resumes, it is about the kingdom of God. It is about being usable and useful to spread the Gospel in a unique way. It is about doing all things to make much of the name of Jesus. God doesn’t give us a platform to share trivial, fleeting things. He wants you to use a megaphone to proclaim His excellencies to a world that doesn’t know Him or value His worth (whether you have five followers or five-thousand.)

I don’t think it gets any more clear than that!

I’m excited for this and I hope you’ll love what we create! Here’s a preview of some things we’ve made so far:

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Be sure to follow us on Instagram, too!

 

Spring

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After many years of consideration, I have to say that I think Spring is my official favorite season. It’s hard because Fall is so full of wonderful things: football, pumpkin flavored things, hayrides, and flannel-wearing. But this Spring weather has just been doing me good. I feel like everytime I step outside, my mood completely lifts. You have to appreciate Spring because it’s making up for the freezing cold winter weather! I feel like it was just the Snowpocalypse and I was trapped in my apartment for days dealing with cabin fever. And suddenly now there are flowers and blue skies all around! Because of my new discovery, I have really been putting more effort into soaking up this time while it’s here.

Things are changing. Fast.

Here’s some things I’ve been up to lately:

Image1. Babysitting this sweet little one and her sisters! Sometimes I just want to ditch school and be a professional babysitter. I guess that’s not acceptable…right?

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2. Easter in Dudley with Ben & his mom’s side of the family! I love them.

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Image3. Yes, that is a man in a gorilla suit. On our last day of class, my cohort met at our teacher’s house in the Boulevard neighborhood, had class, and ate lasagna. Then we walked to the tree room together. How cool is that? It was really nice to be welcomed into her cute home in one of the coolest parts of Athens! I feel like people overlook the greatness of Normaltown/Prince Avenue.

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4. And speaking of that area, Ben and I went to Viva Argentine on Friday. It used to be on the east side but just moved to Bottleworks-right next to Hendershots. I was reluctant at first because I am apprehensive about spicy food, but this wasn’t a problem. I got empanadas and soup and it was DELICIOUS.

5. A sad confession: I’ve really never been very good at reading my Bible. Even when I did, I was just reading through it and not really studying it. Then I realized what I was missing: a study Bible! I don’t know why I had never invested in one, but I was given one at our last BCM leadership meeting with my name on it and everything. Last week I picked it up and started flipping through it. I came to 1st Samuel and just started reading. Since then, I’ve actually been able to read a little bit every night. I started REALLY reading it. Not just the verses but all of the notes and side stories. I finally feel like I’m making sense of the Bible and all of the stories that I often let go over my head. I’m just sad that it took me this long to realize how great a study bible can be.

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6. The newest addition to my antique collection is this amazing Coke crate with bottles! I had to work really hard to clean them all out because they were pretty muddy, but I’m happy with them. They all have different cities on the bottoms of them that tell where they were bottled at. I love that. And they came from Ben’s great grandfather, which makes them even better!

Image7. My first watercolor experiment. I may have a long way to go but painting with watercolors is really fun. It might have to take the place of knitting in my life for a while in this hot weather. It’s just hard to knit when it’s not cool outside. 😦

 

Happy Spring!!

Home Sweet Home

 

Good day!

 

There’s nothing like creating something beautiful, especially when I get to make something as a gift for somebody else! I made this burlap pillow for Ben’s sister for her birthday. Lindsey & Grayson moved to California last year from Woodstock, and I felt that it was only fitting to have a reminder of their old home in their new one! But I have to confess, I only half made it. I knew that my mom would do a much better job at sewing the pillow, so I asked her to do that part. Then I painted on the outline of the United States and stitched on the rest!

 

If anybody would be interested in buying a pillow of this variety (a Georgia pillow perhaps?), I would love to make one for you!