Thursday, February 12, 2015

A big HUG came in the mail today.


I have been blogging since 2006, and when I started this blog I had no idea if anyone would read a single word of it. Back then my internet "neighborhood" looked nothing like it does today. I used Flickr a heck of a lot more, and I only had a few fave blogs that I followed. I started my own blog very soon after Aaron's near fatal van crash. Prior to the crash we had been living a super fast paced life. We had been making and painting our own line of furniture, and had a home accessories collection...both of which we sold to stores all over the US. We were often being featured in our favorite magazines and in general, we were sorta on fire. But then it all came to a grinding halt. 
Aaron was laid up for quite a while and there were several surgeries over a handful of years. It was a long hard road and most of it was spent at home. Running our business at full speed was no longer possible, but we still needed to make a living…so we had to figure out how to live life at half speed and half strength. To start out we took some of the artwork that we had been selling in our real life retail location, and listed it on ebay. Everything sold right away. So then we started doing lots and lots of that stuff…mainly one-of-a-kind pieces of wall art. Aaron did most of his work on a little work table that he'd pull up to the side of our pull-out couch. No heavy lifting required.
Anyway, it was in that period that I started blogging. I desperately needed a social outlet and the blog world was amazing back then. It was the days before Facebook and people were really passionate about blogs. On average a post would get like 30-50 comments. And oh jeez, the swaps were insane! I even hosted a few. Some of the swaps had over 70 participants. (was I crazy?)
I have so many great memories of those early blogging days. Many of my fave bloggers no longer blog these days, and we now keep in touch through Facebook. 

I still love blogging and I hope to start doing more of it. I love sharing bits of our life with you guys, and it's a thrill to see comments from names that I've been reading since those early days. I love knowing that we're still connected!

These days, hands down, my absolute favorite social media platform is Instagram. For me it is the closest thing to the old days of blogging. There really is such an amazing sense of community. Makers, Crafters, and Artists all supporting each other. We've got swaps, giveaways, get togethers, shared hashtags, we get to check in on friends daily…see what they are buying, wearing, eating, making. And I love how easily I can scroll back to see what me and Aaron have been up to for the past few weeks or months…in seconds I can just flick my finger and see a colorful stream of snapshots from our life.

Wow, I had no intentions of being so wordy in this post. I guess this most recent act of generosity and community has got me feeling nostalgic. But I can go on all night, so let me cut to the chase. If you follow me on Instagram or Facebook, you may have heard that recently we had some of our artwork stolen and used on a toy that is sold by some very big stores. It was a shock and a heartbreak. But I don't really want to get into all of that right now. It's all too negative and this is a positive post. 
This post is all about our Instagram creative community being alive and well. And some stellar proof of that arrived in the mail today.


We got a package on our doorstep. It arrived totally out of the blue, with a return address from Kelley of Candelles. Kelley, along with a handful of incredibly talented and very very kind gals from Instagram all collaborated to put together a care package to cheer me and Aaron up and to let us know that they support us and that we are a part of an amazing community. To say that I was overwhelmed with emotion would be the understatement of the year. Just wow! Kelley sent me a custom Cake scented candle with this sweet sentiment on the label. I've been burning it the past hour and it is wonderful! 



This hand lettered print is by the incredibly talented Eva Taylor. The message is so perfect and it will hang as a constant reminder in our studio. Eva is so gifted when it comes to typography. 


This beautiful hand embroidered hoop is by Kristen of Gulush Threads. Kristen is also the gal hosting the Galentine's swap I mentioned in my last post. 


How beautiful is this floral? And that lettering is so so sweet!


Can you even handle how cute this is? A one of a kind hand stitched dream catcher from Made by Betty B. Customized with Everyday is a Holiday and bunny ears! How could you have bad dreams with this hanging in your home? 


Isn't it adorable? Jeez, I can't even believe all of these amazing gifts. 


And these fun fun fun prints from my friend Kelsey of Honey and the Hive. I love her style! so vibrant and happy! 


Kelsey also sent along this hoop. I'm pretty sure it is also a Made by Betty B. piece.  
I love this saying: "There are two ways of spreading light, to be the candle or the mirror that reflects it". 


I adore this beautiful hand stitched necklace from Ruthie of My Trash and Treasure. I love the colors and the contrast of the geometric design set against the antique brass. So pretty! And Ruthie also sent along a Starbucks gift card. So incredibly thoughtful! 

I'm just so blown away by how kind and generous and thoughtful these gals are. My gosh, I never thought today's mail would bear such a big big box of really good medicine. I'm so thankful for the friendships I have made through blogging, flickr, Facebook, ebay, etsy, and now Instagram! The world truly gets smaller every day. 
Sure, you come across lots and lots of depressing stuff online…but it's up to us to look for the positive good stuff. 

I hope you'll check out all of these sweet and talented gals on Instagram and in their online shops. I'm honored to be connected to all of these super talented people.

Thanks for reading, and thanks for being here! 
xo Jenny…and Aaron says hi!

23 comments:

  1. That just makes me cry.....you and Aaron are so special and I love that all these people sent you such heartfelt and beautiful treasures. You are my favorite blogger....don't ever stop! I need to get on Instagram more! Love yall!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. aww Becky. You are a sweetie! Thank you so so much. Love you!!! XO

      Delete
  2. I've read your blog for quite awhile and I just want to tell you your talents amaze me. Nothing copied could ever come close to original talent. Such nice people in this big old blogging/Instagram/FB community. I'm happy you got some much needed love in the mail:) happy day to you.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi Marci! Thank you very very much! So so kind of you! Thank you for reading and for taking the time to leave such sweet words! XOXO

      Delete
  3. Love reading what you guys are up to.Your blog is so fun.Your home posts,your babies,and your guys sweet romance after all the years is soooo beautiful!!! .I am sorry that your artwork was stolen though..Boo.You are so talented,it was bound to happen unfortunately.XOXO

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi Amber! Ohhh thank you SO much! So lovely of you! Thanks for reading, and thanks for your very kind words! It means more than you know! XO

      Delete
  4. I thought it was me that changed not the blogging world. I thought it was because I didn't have the time I wasn't seeing any swaps or blog parties etc. But, I do think facebook is changing everything, so many people can be reached with one sentence and a picture and instant conversation rather then comments. Not, too sure if that is better yet or not. It certainly has by focus at least an hour every day.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi Geralyn! Yeah… times have changed/ And now it is so much easier to just keep in touch on fb for so many. Lots of folks read my blog, but then comment on fb. It's just a habit now. It's always so nice to see blog comments, we really appreciate it! But totally understand the "real time" feeling of a fb convo. Instagram seems like just the right balance for me. Lots of eye candy, and real time convos. I can't imagine not having it in my life now. ha! Crazy right? Thanks for popping in!! Happy Galentine's Day!! XOXO

      Delete
  5. Oohh look at all that goodness! You are so lucky.

    Haha, I so agree with you re: the blogging. I started blogging in 2004/2005 time and the blogging world was so different then (so much more commenting!) & yes I used Flickr a lot more then too! To be honest I have neglected my blog over the past few years & just used it as a tool to update people about my shop rather than a look at the person behind the shop. I must admit I too am loving Instagram & it really does feel like micro blogging.

    Have a love filled weekend.
    x

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi! And geez… I was so blown away by this surprise package! Just so so so nice! And it sounds like we are on the same page. ; ) thanks so much for popping in and taking the time to comment! :) xo

      Delete
  6. Some of the nicest friends are people we have never met in person!!

    ReplyDelete
  7. What amazing happy mail!! WOW!!! Love our crafty community and how we all pull together for the best virtual hugs!!!!!!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi Julie! And geeez I know! right?! ahhh!! So so so nice!! Everything is amazing!! So lucky! It was such great medicine!! Thanks so much for always popping in!! Your words mean a lot! XO

      Delete
  8. You and Aaron are very good people on top of being super talented. While some crappy things have crossed your path, it seems all the good you put out in the world comes back to you in abundance when you need it the most. It's a testament of how awesome you guys are! :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Ohhh you sweetheart!! geez. too too too sweet!! Thanks Marilyn!! Thanks for popping in and always having a kind word. Happy to be friends! :) XOXO

      Delete
  9. Such beautiful and thoughtful gifts! The online community IS amazing! Especially in the niche of handmade. There's so much encouragement and support to go around and I love that it radiates from blogs like yours. I started blogging in 2012, so I'm still discovering many of the incredible long time bloggers out there, but I have absolutely fallen in love with your instagram account (and now blog!) and look forward to seeing what amazing photos you share everyday. I'm so sorry to hear your work was stolen. They say imitation is flattery or whatever but getting ripped off from people who should know better is complete crap and utterly unacceptable! I hope that issue is resolved soon and with as little drama as possible. Until then, keep doing what you're doing because it's a beautiful thing :)

    p.s. I hope my little block print Valentine reaches you soon! <3

    ReplyDelete
  10. Beautiful things you received!!! Amazing! I do miss the early days of blogging. *sigh* Keep doing what you do so well!!! Happy Hearts Day to you. <3

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi Dawn! Oh I still can't get over everything! So so sweet!! Thanks so so much for popping in and for your sweet words! : ) XO

      Delete
  11. What lovely gifts! I've 'met' so many lovely and supportive people through blogging/twitter/Instagram. So happy I started it

    ReplyDelete
  12. Wonderful post! I'm Jenny-come-lately to your blog am enjoying it immensely.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi Lynda! Thanks so so much! So happy you found us! :) xo

      Delete

Thanks so much for reading! We absolutely love to hear from you guys...so please leave a comment if the mood strikes you, or if you have any questions for us about a recipe, project, art supply , paint color, etc. Don't panic if your comment doesn't appear right away...we moderate all comments to avoid getting tons of spam. Thanks again!!
xo Jenny & Aaron