Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Summer Wedding Shower for Old Friends

I'm delighted you are here and hope you are inspired to...
Well, just inspired to do something kind!

Celebrating friends and family and making them feel special is my passion! I love the tabletop because it gets your attention and draws you in, however the real meaning comes from the time you spend talking, laughing and making memories at the table.

Friendship is the real blessing. Whether old or now it is a gift to treasure. 
This shower was thrown by my mom, myself and my sister for some of our oldest friends' daughter, Julie! Mike & Luan, her parents, are almost like godparents to me and my sister and they have been a part of my life since I was born. I experienced some of the happiest and saddest moments with them, a long time ago. We admire them for so many things: their joy of life, always having a smile and their positive outlook.  For the shower it was all celebration in lavender. 
My mom, not typically sappy or teary eyed, was both because I think as life goes on we learn to treasure those who have stayed by our sides, loyal, tender, dear in thick or thin. This is the Cohen family to us.
Although the decorations were clearly outstanding and top notch that wasn't what stood out in the end. It was the love between us all. 
Love is gentleness and strength. In friendship both are needed. Romans 15:2 describes it beautifully, "Strength is given us for service, not to convey status." 
Sitting in a circle reminds us of the bond of loyalty, a very regal quality, also one found throughout the bible. Psalm 63:7   Because you've always stood up for me, I'm free to run and play  (to be whom I was created to be)...
I'm taking this from a book that is so inspiring to me now, Lioness Arising, by Lisa Bevere. It's main theme is the prowess and strength to those who guard and protect (Isaiah 28:6) (each other). 
It is inspiring...
Guarding and protecting those we love, showering them both literally and figuratively with attention, kindness, and affection: grooming them, effectively. 
Ephesians 4:29
Do not let any unwholesEphesians 4:29
Do not let any unwholesome talk come out of your mouths, but only what is helpful for building others up according to their needs, that it may benefit those who listen. 
k come out of your mouths, but only what is helpful for building others up according to their needs, that it may benefit those who listen. 

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Sunday, June 17, 2012

Not USC but you Dad: Fathers Day

Happy Fathers Day!
To celebrate my amazing dad I thought I'd share a little conversation my dad and I recently had. 
Without elaborating, my dad was saying how much he loved his alma mater: USC. Lately, me not so much! One of his points was, in an only-dad-can-say-prideful-kind-of-way, that I had turned out so amazingly (ok, I warned you~only dad can say) was bla bla bla USC trained you, taught you etc...

While sitting in church this morning listening to Pastor Ralph wax poetic on what a makes a great dad I realized something profound that I had to share with my dad.
Yes, I chose my blog to do so in a "Shout it from the rooftops" kind of way

Dad, I turned out this way, because of you.
Not USC.
I have a hard work ethic, because I watched you growing up.
I am honest (neurotically so) because I watched you always tell the truth.
I am dependable because I watched you always keep your word, "A word is like a promise" you said.
I love the Lord (in part) because you said prayers with me every night at bedtime.
I picked an amazing husband, because I watched you be an amazing one to my mom.
I am a good mom (most of the time, i hope) because you and mom modeled great parents for me.

Dad, I am who I am because of you, and the grace of God.
Not because of USC. Not because where I attended school. I was that person before I went. It was because of you.
I love you, Dad.

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Friday, June 15, 2012

Books to inspire, a blessing not small at all

When beginning any project an interior designer needs some inspiration. Although usually it is her clients, or their passion, I always began with an "inspiration"! (See my two design boards for a Lake Home and an Avocado Ranch Home)

Just as inspiration is important to a design project, so is it crucial to living a life worthy of "Inspired Design".

So a blessing that is not so small at all is books! A book that is so thought provoking it changes your perspective...There are 3 books that I have been carrying around with me lately that have done just that!
1. One Thousand Blessings by Ann Voscamp
2.  Lioness Arising by Lisa Bevere
3. Culture of Honor by Danny Silk
Would you reply back what your inspiring book is? I'd love to know!

The ultimate in inspiration? The Bible!!!
I think the reason is it is basic in its truth but profound in the lessons and results...
A blessing, not small at all...
Him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us Ephesians 3:20-21 

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Monday, June 11, 2012

Simple Garden Baby Shower...

The ideals which have lighted my way time after time have given me courage to face life cheerfully, have been kindness, beauty and truth. 
Albert Einstein

Wonderful day, beautiful flowers, from my yard except for one, lovely teenage girls on way off to college, and three darling teachers from Hannah's school celebrating a new life ...
Simple & Intimate...
Quiet & Delightful...
Spent the morning washing patio and front yard, clipping herbs fresh, and preparing the plates and the delicious recipes...
Hannah made the cupcakes, did the display on the mantle, and at her request I did the now "required" sugared glasses!
It is a blessing, not small at all, to get to do these things with my daughter, better yet it was her idea. I love to see the kindness pouring out of her daily....
Small blessing? Not small at all...
The brie, pecan & cranberry tart was delicious, an offshoot of a Pinterest recipe. I love Pinterest. Have I mentioned that? So many ideas there, so little time to try them all!

No kind action ever stops with itself. One kind action leads to another. Good example is followed. A single act of kindness throws out roots in all directions, and the roots spring up and make new trees. The greatest work that kindness does to others is that it makes them kind themselves.
 --Amelia Earhart

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Thursday, June 7, 2012

Small blessings not small at all

I'm so excited to share with you some of my favorite blessings.

You might think them small, but they are not small at all.
The quote below by Mother Teresa says this most profoundly...
Small things with great love.
I hope so...as the top question I have answered on radio and tv programs across the country is "What if I don't have "X" which has varied from tons of time, excess money, huge house, gourmet cooking skills etc.. 
People are touched by thoughts in action,
not intentions...
Sometimes just doing it, while not perfectly
Turns out to be perfectly just what was needed.
done without a cent,
without much time,
some  more time intensive,
with little financial investment,
others more costly,
some very time consuming...
 a variety of ideas to touch someone

A lovely text from Marta, saying something that was "inspiring" or the following sentence that reminded another friend of me... (She actually took a picture of the page and texted it to me)
"Often it is enough to know that others have crossed the bridge before us and found their way safely to the other side. Sometimes those who falter simply need a glance back from a sister who is already safely there. The look back is enough to communicate, "Hey, sister! I am out here, and not only is it all clear...it is all good!" (page 80, Lioness Arising, by Lisa Bevere)

Beautiful Quote
Painting of something special (I did this for my mom of her house for her birthday) to someone...
Lovely 40th Birthday to celebrate SHE gave us a night on the beach to pray over us (I felt like it was my birthday AND how blessed to have such a thoughtful friend~Stacey!!!)
Bible verses chosen by S. for each of us, framed with beautiful graphics. Mine was Proverbs 31:25 
Beautifully set table...Whether china or paper...A beautiful tabletop speaks to me!
Praying beautiful words over each other...Heidi reading some over Birthday Girl....
Flowers on another tabletop arranged by Suzanne, some from her own backyard...
Lovely Food prepared by Brad, beautiful and delicious, laughter abounding...
Children around, smiling for the camera...simple blessing, not small at all.
Old friends (24+ years) sharing stories with great wit (he has some great ones as a gold medalist in Olympics)...
Painting in the garden with the teenagers to great music (Garden another blessing/diff day)...
Special party for "Old Friends" to simply celebrate friendship and the lovely quotes, food, tabletop and decor that went with it, to celebrate "Authentic, longtime and genuine" friendship~enough said??

These small blessings are not small at all.....


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