Sunday, January 31, 2010

Hope Is a Pretty Thing




I bought this apron last week. It was, I suppose, a sort of congratulations present to myself. Ridiculous, right? I know. Silly.

But I can't begin to tell you... ... ... May I just tell you? As awful as 2009 was, 2010 is, well, it's that much better. Doubly better. Exponentially better. I paused this afternoon and winked at heaven. I actually winked at heaven. You were right, I told Him. Everything You promised. Everything You said. You were right.

Image from Apron Anatomy


Promises kept are beautiful. Lessons learned are precious. Valleys, once forged, are dear. And then there's hope. Hope. Hope.

Hope is pretty thing.

Sunday, January 24, 2010

Today's Gifts...

...flowers from the store.
...wooden scoops, ready for a farm.
...Melody Gardot, singing.
...dreams, still thick in my morning mind.
...coffee, strong and steaming.
...Millie, barking outside.
...Ladies in Lavender, ready to play.
...medicine, for a 4-day, lingering bug.
...laundry, folded, ready to pack.
...healthy bread in the oven.
...Sunday. A new week. A beautiful gift.

Monday, January 18, 2010

Whew!

I have to say: washing, photographing and posting the Green Glass Grab goodies to eBay took much longer than I anticipated. Seriously. Now I understand why there are people who will do that for you. For a great, big, giant fee, of course.

After looking over my collection, I decided not to post all the glasses and tumblers I've collected. I'll probably take them to a flea market or antique place and see if anyone wants them. If not, maybe I'll yard sale the lot. The thought of unwrapping all those individual glasses, hand washing them (no dishwasher here) and dealing with them was more than I wanted to tackle this weekend. Especially since I have two work reports and my AOL bio and two article drafts due tomorrow. And whoamygosh, is it almost 5 PM on Monday? I'm dead. I'm so dead.

(Big thanks to all who rushed over and browsed and bid. Big. Thanks. Made my day. Thank you, thank you.)

Got to get settled into this hotel and geared up for another week of brain-bending work. See you when I come up for air... -Brin

Saturday, January 16, 2010

Green Glass Grab

So sometime in college, around age 20, I fell for vintage green glass. I fell hard. I loved how the deeply cut, emerald-hued pieces reminded me of spring... of blooming daffodils and Easter grass. Around Christmas I adored how they so easily displayed pinecones, nuts and greenery. I kept a dish on my desk to hold stamps and paper clips. I stashed a tiny bowl in the bathroom cabinet to hold soaps. I kept a green glass pitcher of iced tea in the refrigerator, a stack of plates handy for dinners. Green glass became my "thing", and I picked up pieces wherever and whenever I could.

I decided this winter, as I looked forward to purchasing and customizing a tiny country cottage, that I would have to part with my little collection. Last night, amidst weekend work deadlines and the beginnings of a nasty cold, I decided: I will keep one piece. The rest I will eBay in hopes of sending to eclectic, vintage, or colorful homes where my collection will be loved and treasured for years.

Today I'm uploading my collection to eBay so the Green Glass Grab can begin. Ten percent of each purchase will go toward aiding disaster relief through the American Red Cross, so I feel even better about sending my collection back into the world.

The Green Glass Grab will be going on in full force here on Monday. Thanks for browsing! -Brin

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

National Month of Rest?

January is good for napping. I think we should start referring to these 31 days as the National Month of Rest. National Resting Month. I can't speak for you, but a few days of intensive rest would be ... would make... would help...

...Yeah. Sleep would be good.

Something tells me Millie and her loyal sidekick, Quackers, would hardly object.

Monday, January 11, 2010

Today I'm celebrating three things that make me weepy proud and inspire me daily:

1. The Preemptive Love Coalition. Started by Jessica, a fellow Academy of Freedom student, and her husband, Jeremy, the Preemptive Love Coalition reaches out to Arab and Kurdish children in Iraq who desperately need life-saving heart surgeries. According to the PLC, "experts think that Saddam Hussein’s 281 chemical attacks and experiments on the Kurds of northern Iraq contribute to the high rate of life-threatening heart disease among children in the region today." Unwilling to sit by, Jessica, Jeremy and their team network with compassionate givers and willing doctors to get these precious children the medical attention they desperately need, spreading hope and love to a largely unreached population.

Let's help. Can we? I know things are tough right now, but do y'all think we could pull together and see that one of these precious kids gets her heart surgery? It would take 300 of us giving a quick $10 to make it happen. Tell you what, visit Preemptive Love Coalition's site, poke around and then think about it. If you're lead to help give $10 or more, do so and let me know. I want to send you a HouseHelper as a way of saying thanks, even if I have to knit 300 of them. :)

2. Lily White Designs. These girls are passionate about creating but - even more - are passionate about sharing their faith. Having run into one of their customers in a hot dog line in Kansas City last week, I contacted Abbie and Jordan and begged for a custom tote. Can't wait to show you. These girls are awesome. Stop by and encourage them, would you?

3. Misty Edwards. It's ridiculous now, but before I "met" Misty and her music, I thought I was the only one. I thought I was the only Christian who stared into the starry night sky and demanded of God: why? Why, God, is there so much suffering? Why do cancer cells spread and checks bounce and children starve and hurricanes strike and men abuse their wives? Why do we get up and do this every day? What's the point of all this? What's the point of life? At some point during the day, almost every day, I listen to Misty's song Point of Life (you can hear some of the song here) and I remember. And it comforts me.

Thanking Jesus today for the people He's raised up everywhere... walking His walk, talking His talk, and bringing His love and His beautiful heart to those who haven't met Him yet and need a bit of Him now. You guys inspire me and make me proud to be a believer. -Brin

Sunday, January 10, 2010

In Anticipation of Picnics

While browsing the discount fabric at Hobby Lobby yesterday, I came across this pieced yardage of red and white gingham, cheerful plaid, field flowers. This would make the perfect picnic blanket, I thought as I bought almost four yards.

So last night I began pinning, cutting, and sewing in anticipation of longer days and warmer evenings. I climbed into bed thinking of walking down the pine needle path to the old boat rental shed at the state park. I saw the rainbow-colored sodas in glass bottles... boat paddles hanging from rusted hooks... fishing lures jumbled behind smudged glass. I heard water lapping against bobbing canoes... laughter... the crackle of campfires. I felt cool grass under my feet and warm sun on my back. And suddenly I was asleep....

It was undoubtedly the best rest I've had in weeks.

Here's to picnic lunches before we know it. -Brin

Friday, January 8, 2010

Travel, New Ventures, and a Kind Introduction


Cold day. Even the light feels cold. My eyes ache for something green on days like this one. I get home and fuss around the house, moving vases holding scavenged green things. It warms me up somehow.

I've had a wonderfully busy new year. After waking up January first in Kansas City, I've since zoomed back to Texas and then over to Arkansas, where I'm working on a new project during the week. Late this afternoon I made it back to Texas, dropped my bags by the door and headed to the kitchen. Time to cook.

Speaking of, looks as though we may have to make room for a few more folks around here. AOL has asked me to write a weekly online column, gabbing about food and my life and "waxing poetic", as the editor suggested I tend to do. Suits me fine. I'm eager to make new things, take new pictures, and putter around the kitchen a bit more. Sounds great, doesn't it? Especially on a day as cold as this.

Hope you and the new year had a kind introduction. I have a good feeling about this one, about 2010. I really do...