Archive for July, 2008

A day at the Governor’s mansion!

Wednesday, July 30th, 2008

It’s been a few days since I last posted – deadline to meet, sleep to catch up on, etc. etc. Today was something out of the ordinary, so I knew I would have to write about it!

If you look back through my posts, you will see that I discuss being on the executive board of directors for Together We Can Foundation. Our mission is to address the underserved in our community – i.e., the mentally challenged, seniors with few resources, foster children – the list goes on. We have focused first on foster teens aging out of the system, and our plans dovetail quite nicely with those of the First Lady of the Commonwealth of Virginia – Mrs. Anne Holton Kaine. We were invited to speak with her this morning, so seven of us on the board made the 1 3/4-hour trip to Richmond.

At this time of the year, Richmond is hot, hazy, and humid, as is so much of Virginia, and today was no exception. When you enter the grounds, however, you immediately notice the huge, sheltering trees, the graceful sweep of the home, and the peaceful appearance of this stately building. Once inside, the first floor is beautifully decorated in period furniture, and lovely paintings of important figures in Virginia’s history remind you of the richness of those who have gone before us. Richness not in wealth, but in their contributions – a lovely portrait of Pocahontas is on the wall on the right of the foyer. She was presented at court in England when she married John Rolfe, and you see her beautiful clothing, complete with the ruffled high collar, and fitted bodice.

We entered the formal dining room, and seated ourselves around the banquet table, and quietly awaited our meeting. Presently, the First lady arrived with her administrative assistant, and we began a substantive talk about our program and how we can work together to make real progress on the issues facing our at-risk foster teens. It was an animated discussion, and we came away with the very positive impression of a woman who is thoughtful, insightful, intelligent, and highly approachable. If you follow American politics, and I certainly hope all of you do, you are aware that Governor Tim Kaine is on the short list of possible running mates for Obama. Mrs. Holton-Kaine would be an enormous asset to the nation, as she certainly has been to our state.

After we parted company, we piled into our cars and headed for the Shockhoe Slip area of Richmond – the bottom land which has become quite a hot location for eateries, nightspots, and the arts. We ate at Millie’s which looks like an average place on the outside, and has wonderful food on the inside. We arrrived just ahead of the lunch crowd. When we left, those waiting had formed a line through the front doors and outside – and all of this in 95 degree weather! Good eatins’!

The trip back seemed to take so little time, as the four of us cackling women kept one another laughing all the way. What a terrific day, for a wonderful cause, with great friends on a road trip! What more could you ask??????

Some thoughts for any day!

Monday, July 21st, 2008

More rambling thoughts from my notebook of quotes….gratitude and happiness

Gratitude is the memory of the heart.    Jean Baptiste Massieu

Gratitude is happiness doubled by wonder.    G. K. Chesterton

Real elation is when you feel you could touch a star without standing on tiptoe.   Dory Larson

One filled with joy preaches without preaching.  Mother Teresa

You cannot always have happiness, but you can always give happiness.   Unknown

Happiness often sneaks in through a door you didn’t know you left open.   John Barrymore

The best vitamin to be a happy person is B1.   Unknown

Hope you enjoy the day – and happiness!

Market news

Thursday, July 17th, 2008

Hi there!  Well, the Atlanta Market for the summer is winding up, and I have been getting the updates through newsletters.  If you have never been to a wholesale market, Atlanta is an experience beyond belief!  A vertical shopping paradise awaits buyers from all the over the world, and if you have it in your closet, on your floor, on your walls, or decorating your home, the chances are that it has come to you by way of a trade show.

Here are a couple of links to some newsy tidbits about this summer’s festivities – and there are festivities! The Direct from Market: Atlanta and Market Report letters will give you a taste of what has been going on, what the offerings were, and what you can expect to see the second half of the year and next spring.  Yes, next spring, because spring lines are usually sampled this time of year!  It gives manufacturers time to get production underway so that shipping can take place in January.  MBAers tell us that we have a consumer-driven economy, and after visiting Atlanta, you can believe it!

Together We Can Foundation

Wednesday, July 16th, 2008

It’s been several days since my last post – so much sculpting, so little time…. But, there is something else which occupies my mind, and that is a brand new charitable foundation, of which I am an executive board member.

Have you ever thought about what it would be like not to have a permanent home, a family who loves you and cares about you, a place to go when you are on spring break from college, a prom dress or  a class ring for graduation?  These are some of the many issues, large and small, facing foster teens as they struggle to come to grips with the situations in which they find themselves.  Our newly organized  Together We Can Foundation has as its goal to improve the lives and the futures of teenagers who transition from foster care into what has to be a very tenuous world.  We want our young people to have:

HOPE

OPPORTUNITY

ADEQUATE PREPARATION

SUPPORT

To do this, we will be launching our public information and fundraising efforts through press releases, brochures, word-of-mouth, and a September 9th visit from Virginia’s First Lady Anne Holton, whose platform issue has been her For Keeps initiative that every foster child needs a “forever family” .  We are indeed privileged to have her here to speak with community leaders and Virginia Beach City Council to underscore the responsibilities we all must undertake on behalf of our children.

Together We Can will have a website up and fully operational shortly, and I will be linking you to it.  This effort in my own community can be mirrored in yours as well.  All it takes is a group of “troublemakers”, as we laughingly refer to ourselves, to bring this issue out in the sunlight and get things moving in a positive direction.  Every citizen in our country has this responsibility, because the foster care programs nationwide are under governmental direction —- we all = government!  Think about how you can help where you live, and become active!  It will give so much to children in need, and it will give so much to you!

STJ launch today!

Sunday, July 13th, 2008

Hello! It is July 13th, and it is launch day for Spooky Time Jingles! This is a major development for me, since I have never worked online, sold online, uploaded pictures, cut and pasted – are you getting the idea here? The site is up and rolling, and imagine my surprise when I opened mail this sunny morning, about 7 am, and discovered that I had made my first sale!!!!!!!! Wowzer! A lovely lady in New York state bought two of my Wee Claus pieces, bless her heart! Thank you Candyce and I hope you enjoy them!

Give yourselves a treat and hop on over to Spooky Time Jingles today and take a look and some really great folk art! New pieces change out on the 13th of every month! Enjoy!

Blogging world

Saturday, July 12th, 2008

Just an fyi to all of you in the blogging world….I found this article on my home page this afternoon, and I think it is an interesting one to read. It makes you pause and reflect about what you are really writing and what you really mean to say. We love to write, exchange ideas, offer suggestions. etc. and the caution here is that in this day and age, everyone is an internet neighbor, so-to-speak. Happy blogging!

Trade news

Saturday, July 12th, 2008

I subscribe to several email newsletters, among them, Home Textiles Today, since I design fabrics. I thought today’s newsletter was really interesting, because it talks about two giants in marketing: Bloomingdale’s and Martha Stewart. You can subscribe to these newsletters by completing an online informational form. Check it out!

Ta Da !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Friday, July 11th, 2008

Hi everyone!

Matt and I have been working this afternoon to upload pictures and text to Spooky Time Jingles, in preparation for the launch on the 13th! And, bless his heart, Matt has gotten my blog all fancied up! Don’t you love this? I will be adding some of my fave sites and blogs for you all to enjoy, so stay tuned for some goodies.

It has been quite an afternoon of computer work for me, and my little brain is so tired! I feel good – the pics are in place, so I can start to relax for a couple of days anyway!

My baby raccoons are coming in the yard, so I will be uploading some pictures soon so that you can see their adorable faces. One has finally figured out how to get into the feeder to get at the sunflower seeds, and he is ecstatic! I am, too! Maturation ! But, he’s still very small, and it will be a long time before he is out on his own. He and his siblings live in the marsh behind my house, and come in late afternoon and evening to eat. The adults are coming as well, and the real fun is when the adults bring their children to play at night in the yard. A couple of nights ago, I had five babies running around in the moonlight. What a treat!

I am off to fix dinner, and then try to unwind from my computer session this afternoon. Have a great weekend, one and all, and be sure to go to www.spookytimejingles.com on Sunday to see some terrific artwork from a wonderful group of artists. I am so fortunate to be on the site with them!

Interesting thoughts

Wednesday, July 9th, 2008

I have always been one who collects quotes from others.  Sometimes I file them away in my mind, and sometimes I have to write them down, because my brain is overloaded.  I decided I would share a few with you – no particular order of importance…….

No one can make you feel inferior without your consent.     Eleanor Roosevelt

The only people with whom you should try to get even are those who have helped you.  John E. Southard

Feeling gratitude and not expressing it is like wrapping a present and not giving it.  William Arthur Ward

Never apologize for showing feeling.  When you do so, you apologize for the truth.  Benjamin Disraeli

Be who you are and say what you feel, because those who mind don’t matter and those who matter don’t mind.   Dr. Seuss

Aren’t these grand?  Even if we haven’t said them, someone has, and they are there for us to ponder…….

Snow in July

Tuesday, July 8th, 2008

Hi everyone!  Well, I don’t know where all of you live, but in Virginia Beach, we are having the usual hazy, hot, and humid summer day!  Weather folks refer to this as the three H’s, so if you are ever in the South and someone mentions that, you know just how to react – get cool!

In line with the think cool today, I thought I would send you a link to a site to make everything seem not so sticky.  This has plenty of snowy images……  Sure hope I figured out this link correctly.  If not, just go to www.snow-pictures.com and enjoy some cooling images!

Time is drawing closer to the launch of Spooky Time Jingles.  You owe it to yourselves to check out the site on Sunday, July 13th!  There are some artists who have not been seen before in online selling (myself included!), and as a special thank you to our visitors to the site, there will be free shipping!  Now, how can you resist that?

Have a terrific day, stay cool, and I’ll be back with another post with pictures – assuming, of course, that this dog can learn some more new tricks!  haha!