Saturday, July 21, 2012

Bead Soup Six Mix

Time for another Bead Soup Blog Party- the 6th and biggest one to date yet! This time there will be not one, but THREE reveal dates, due to 400 participants from all around the world. Lots of wonderful beads and inspirational goodies. I was paired with Arlene Dean from AGlassBash and what a soup she sent me! I'm glad we're scheduled for the last reveal day on August 25th, because I need all the time I can have to try and figure out how to do justice to her focal.
The mermaid is from a show she went to in Washington state, and was created by Gita Maria who only sells at shows so I'm feeling pretty exclusive!. She is also the maker of the adorable fish and sea horse charms. Another beader shared some info about this great new photo app, Pixlr, that I used to make the collage above. I've also downloaded the free app for my phone and am having a whole lot of fun with it, much to my children's dismay.

 Here's a slightly bigger picture of the whole soup. Oh, the possibilities. I love the colors and varieties of beads, sizes and textures. The colors are so me, and all these lovelies came package in the pretty round box with a note card from Arlene.

Reveal date #1 is July 28th- Lori Anderson has a list of all the participants for each round- it's going to take me quite a while to work through the list, but  can't wait to see all the different creations.

Until then, it's time to get creative with dashes of grace and big splashes of joy!

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Saluting Wounded Women Warriors

Very rarely do I read a book that moves me to tears repeatedly. I'm a voracious reader and have read my fair share of good books, but last night I read one that truly moved me. I could not put it down nor would the tears stop. We hear about wounded vets, and the price they pay to protect and preserve our freedom, but having never personally had the privilege of meeting one, it can be an abstract idea. Kristin Hannah changed that for me. Her book Home Front is a gritty, extraordinary glimpse into the true cost of freedom for both those who serve and those who love them. It is the story of Jolene Z and her best friend Tami who are helicopter pilots serving in the reserves when they are called back to active duty in Iraq. It follows them and their families during their one year of duty in dangerous, difficult situations and gives us a firsthand glimpse of what life is like for all involved.

It gave me a lot to think about. There are men and women daily putting their lives on the line because they love our country. The price is high. Here's a link to the faces of women who have lost their lives while serving the USA and gave the ultimate sacrifice. But there is another list that is much longer- the women who are severely wounded and whose lives will never be the same after completing their tour of duty. Today, I am newly humbled and grateful. So this is my salute to those who serve day in and day out, never looking for a reward besides the privilege of serving and defending our wonderful country. It is also a salute to those who pay the price of sending those they love dearly off to combat, not knowing if they will return safely or not.

I want to do something, but don't know who to contact. If you know of an organization that does fundraisers or offers support services to women vets, would you comment below? This country owes them a huge debt- as do I. Looking for something tangible to do? Here's a list of seven ways to say give back to our vets.

Before ending this post, I'd like to say thank you to a special lady who inspires so many of us- Lori Anderson.  One day I hope to meet her in person and thank her for her service to our country. I'd also like to thank Jen Judd who is actively serving. They share their love of beauty and beads with us and motivate us to reach for bigger things.
"Greater love has no one than this: to lay down one’s life for one’s friends." John 15:13
Thank you, women warriors. Here's wishing you and yours dashes of grace and splashes of joy.