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Act As If

Act As If

My friend Lisa is a metal artist. She creates art out of sheets of metal — and functional art at that. Her metal fire pits are not only beautiful lit or unlit, they are unique — some of them custom cut to suit the customer. When I saw some of the incredible designs she was creating, I was floored. While I knew she had creative flair — the girl can take a pile of acorns and a string of busted Christmas lights and create a whimsical table setting — I had no idea she was so damn skilled with power tools! My friend is an artist. She’s not a crafter. She’s not dabbling in metal. She’s not spending hours in her garage studio, riveting or melting or whatever it is she does to create these stunning designs out of flat sheets of metal, because she’s trying to fill time. My friend is an artist. In the very early days of her business, she would call herself a crafter. And I fought her on this. Not out of any disrespect for those of us who spend time doing crafty things– I’m one of them! — but because I felt like she wasn’t owning her talent. She was, subconsciously minimizing her skills, as though I could simply go into her garage, throw on an apron and some safety glasses and scorch the metal into the beautiful designs she now sells across the country. Thankfully, this categorization was short-lived and she started seeing herself as the artist she was. If you ask her today, she’ll tell you she’s an “accidental artist,” which I think is a...
Even if the grass is greener

Even if the grass is greener

On my recent trip to the province of Guanacaste, Costa Rica, I was surprised by the abundance of brown. Dusty brown roads. Barren snuff-colored trees lined the miles of brown and brittle grasses. I’m not sure why I was so surprised. We were visiting the arid plains of Guanacaste during the DRY season. Dry in that there is no rain. No rain meaning no water. No water meaning … ummm.. everything is thirsty. And brown. We booked our trip to Costa Rica without doing a whole lot of research. Armed with a strong desire to escape the lingering chilly days in Atlanta,  I hit the “book now” button on the rental home in Playa Potrero with ease. Visions of lush green mountainsides and fields of brightly colored flowers filled my thoughts in the days that led up to our journey. And then we arrived in Liberia. And there was dust. And dirt. And … well… brown. Don’t get me wrong, Costa Rica, even during the dry season, is spectacular. There are beautiful beaches, towering mountain ranges and breathtaking sunsets. Surfers flock to the region and the pace is just what the doctor ordered.  Pura Vida (the law of the land in Costa Rica) is a synonym of “hakuna matata” – Life is wonderful; enjoy it. But I was not expecting the dry season to be so … well… dry. We spent the first part of the week exploring the pristine shorelines, drinking local beer at makeshift bars set up on the beach, and immersing ourselves into the local culture. By day three, we were head-over-heels in love with Costa Rica–already talking about how to make...
I Am In Love

I Am In Love

I’m in love. It’s that sweet kind of love that makes your heart swell. The kind you want to share with the world. The kind of love that makes break into a stupid grin at the most random moments –as though you are keeping the most delicious secret. I was quite unprepared for the immediate wave of emotion that washed over me the first time saw her. And every day since she entered my life. The last time I felt this kind of immediate, intense love was more than 18 years ago. It was late in the night when he came into my life. Sweet and warm.  The moment I saw his face, the world simply fell away. Pressing him close to me,  I knew that he had my heart forever. Just as the three who came before him did. Being a mother has always been my most treasured role in life. I was 19 years old the first time I felt all those wonderful warm emotions that come with motherhood. I remember looking into the eyes of my first child and thinking “You are gorgeous! Are you really mine?” Eleven days ago, I was swept back in time. With the arrival of our first grandchild, I was reminded at how deeply you can love a new person. This brand new being has already reeled me in. With her baby soft hair and sweet breath, I’m captivated by her. During the months that we awaited the arrival of our granddaughter, friends who are already in “the club,” have shared the many perks of this new role. The typical “You can spoil...
Groovy Kind of Love

Groovy Kind of Love

Yesterday, my husband and I celebrated 23 years of marriage. This is apparently far above the normal marriage longevity these days, so kudos to us! When I saw my husband for the first time, my heart did a little skip. The man has the most incredible baby blue eyes and when he flashed his tiny crooked smile at me the first time, my arms prickled and my face flushed. I wasn’t the only woman at the office where we worked that was intrigued by this handsome new computer guy. He carried a black briefcase, wore blue suits, and smelled like fresh laundry. Not sure why I remember the smell, but to this day “linen” is my candle-scent of choice. It turned out that not only was he the new office hottie, he was a super nice guy. And by super nice, I mean SUPER NICE. He was what my mother would call “a catch” – if I was fishing for a man, that is. Which I was definitely not. And yet, here we are. Twenty-three years later. And I still heat up when he looks at me that certain way or when he quietly reaches for my hand while we are watching TV. As you get older, it’s those little things that have the greatest impact. I don’t know how to compare how we feel love, but I do know that it changes over time. When it’s new, there’s that giddy feeling. There’s romance and it’s kind of a show, right? Candlelit dinners. Love notes. And all those “firsts.” But love, mature love — the kind that lasts forever — shows itself in so...
Happy Random Acts of Kindness Day

Happy Random Acts of Kindness Day

Did you know that today, August 22, is officially “Random Acts of Kindness Day in Georgia”? Yes, indeed… it is. Governor Nathan Deal even proclaimed it so. So this morning, my friend Wendy, jumpstarted the day by performing a random act of kindness–and she didn’t even know she was actively participating in an actual event! (That’s because she’s naturally kind-hearted… soooo…”) I had mentioned to Wendy just yesterday that I was learning how to make beach glass jewelry to add to my jewelry collection. I told her about this  VERY kind shop owner on Etsy who went over-and-above by sharing not only instructions on how to make the pendants, but she also included a finished pendant and a half-finished pendant in my order so I could see one completed pendant and then I could finish the other one! How crazy is that? How often do you see people go out of their way for a mere $7 order? I can tell you my theory: The woman is passionate about what she does and is excited to share that with others. That’s it. No secret. Anyway, back to Wendy’s random act of kindness. So this morning, she brings me three jars of glass. Beautiful glass and tumbled rocks I could use for my new projects–and said “pick anything!” I have been grinning all day (and it started out as kind of a crappy day…). Thank you , Wendy. Amazing how one small act of thoughtfulness can make a person’s day. How are you going to celebrate “Random Acts of Kindess Day”? “If we all do one random act of kindness daily, we...