Monday, 28 November 2011


 I'm here!!!
If you've followed my other blog you'll know that already and will have seen pictures of what my sister and I have been up to the past few weeks. As I've already mentioned, Dubai is such a glamorous city and definitely caters to the wealthy while there is also a large portion of the population that is hard-working and just here to make money for their families back home; there really isn't much of a middle-class since you have to be working in order to stay in the country (unless you're on holiday, like me).
 I've really loved being here.
Our dear friends have been so kind and generous and I quite feel as if I live here myself, very odd, especially considering that it's only been three weeks; perhaps it is because of the familiarity that has already been established, the grocery stores and places of interest are discovered, kindred spirits are met, and there is a solid church already in order. 
I love that we literally walk around the corner to a closet-sized grocery shop (price tags not included) and purchase milk, eggs, full-cream yogurt, and whatever other kitchen necessities we may need.
I love that the beach is a 5-minute brisk walk away and that Mica and I can run in the wee small 
hours of the morning right next to the beach 
(I don't love the mangy cats that we have to avoid but who's counting the dislikes?).
I love the way the sun rises in the morning room and that if we get up at 5 am like we're supposed to I can have an entire hour of still, morning quiet to read and pray.
I love that---for the first time---someone here thought that I was Mexican and not Indian, Middle Eastern, or Italian; not that I mind but it was a pleasant surprise to know that I do look somewhat Mexican.
I love that the store bought eggs come with feathers and that beautiful artisan bread is so inexpensive.
I love meeting people from every corner of the globe and I love hearing their stories.

Stay tuned.  : )

Monday, 7 November 2011

flying away {part 2}

Well, I'm off again!
This time it's just my sister and I going solo to the wonderful Dubai!
Oh, yes, we're pretty excited.

Do you remember those dear, sweet friends we have over there? The one's we've been wanting to visit for ages? Well, the funds are here, time has come, and our bags are packed. I'm so grateful to be able to take this trip, the Lord has been so gracious and we've been sweetly blessed during this time of preparation.
It's still hard to believe that we're really going but the 45ish pound bags prove it.
We dearly love this family and I'm very excited about all that the Lord will show us through them during that time; I love the way they minister to others and especially how they are training their six (soon to be seven!) adorable children. I'm excited about meeting Believers from that part of the world and talking with them. I'm excited about getting to know whoever comes in the N family's home. I'm excited about the cultural experience and especially about scouting out souvenirs to take home, about sending postcards and writing long emails; I'm excited about playing at the beach and eating foreign food, and (believe it or not) I'm excited about the fifteen hour flight to pray, read, eat, and ponder, the only cause of "sadness" is the fact that knitting needles are considered a possible weapon, therefore I can't work on the dress for Wee Eva, ce la vie!

Needless to say, I can't guarantee to be active on this blog very much, however, you can be sure to see pictures and updates on this dear, wee blog quite often! So be sure you hop over there every few days or so and see what's going on.  : )

Let the blogging break begin, again.

Tuesday, 1 November 2011

{news}letters of importance

Creative Reader:
Well, welcome back, Elena! We missed you.

Yours Truly:
Thanks so much, I had a marvelous vacation/roadtrip/conference experience; and, as always, it's wonderful to be home.

Creative Reader:
Tell us about your trip? We'd especially like to know about how it went selling at that consignment shop in Wilmington.

Yours Truly:
I'd love to share with you about that, and as a matter of fact, I have a blog post already written about it, but first I need to ask you a question.

Creative Reader:

Yours Truly:
Well, as a part of my 12 By 2012 list (which has been updated, btw), I'm starting the first L&B newsletter for our caring customers!
This newsletter will go out once a month and will include 
(but is not limited to) 
free shipping coupon codes, giveaways, DIY projects, updates on new items in our shop, as well as creative tips and tidbits. 
I'm so excited to be starting it and I want you to be the first to sign up for it! 
The first newsletter will be sent out on 
January 6th!!

Creative Reader:
Wow, Elena, that sounds so great, how do I get added to the list?

Yours Truly:
Just send me an email (lemonsandblueberries{at}yahoo{dot}com)
with your email address and you'll get your first newsletter on January 6th!
You will only receive one email from us (clogged email inbox's are detestable to us as well) and it will never be shared or sold--even if someone offered me a pair of English riding boots in exchange for your information, I'd tell them, "Sorry Charlie".
Now that, is what I call security.

Thursday, 20 October 2011

flying away

Well, my friends, the time has come for a break, a blogging and shop break that is.
The next few weeks will be filled with driving, flying, window shopping, knitting, talking, eating, touristing, and wearing cowls (oh, yes, my friend, you can count on that!); I can't guarantee that I'll be able to blog very much while I'm away from home so we'll just say it's a break. ; )

Due to the wonderful traveling that will be happening in the next few weeks, I wanted to let you know that 
I'll be taking a blogging break until November 1st.

When I come back you can count of fabulous posts like,
Me and My Etsy Story

Brick-and-Mortar Selling: How The First Attempt Went and What I Learned

Things "We" Saw: A Photo Post With My Favorite Sights and People From My Trip.

New Friends and Links

Aren't you so excited? Well, I am. ; )

Also, I wanted to let you know that I'll be participating in this 12 Before 2012 project, be sure to check out the new tab above to see the complete list as well as this informative post for more details!
Do you have a 12 Before 2012 list? Let me know! I'd love to see what you have and what's on your list.

{sorry, the photo source is unknown! Let me know if you know!}

Tuesday, 18 October 2011

knitting my bit

I really love these posters from WWII, they're so creative and echo a unique time of hard work; it's one of my very favorite periods to study and I love reading about nearly every area regarding it.
As you can imagine, the one above print is one of my favorites. : ) 

Last week I mentioned that I was arranging my samples to take to North Carolina, well this week I am here to tell you that I. wasn't. kidding. There is a mental list somewhere with a outline of each item I need to make before flying out on Friday; there's really only three sample boxes to make, and--if I spend my time well--there is just enough time for what I need to make. This time around I'll mostly be knitting, with only a few sewing projects; thankfully they're both things that can be done in traffic, long grocery lines, listening to this groovy tune and this enjoyable book, and while watching Jane Eyre (I l.o.v.e. that one). 
Praise the Lord for this glorious wind blew in a delicious 65 degree morning today and I am reveling in the chilly breeze! It makes working with wool blends that much more wonderful.
So, until Friday evening, I'll be 
          ...singing. Yes, though only one of us Marques Chica's takes lessons, we all sing quite liberally. We've taken to turning up our playlists on youtube and pandora just enough so that we sound just like the bands we play. 
          ...working out even though my Dad isn't here to partake in our bleary-eyed sessions. 
          ...sewing up necklaces to take to NC. Instant gratification projects are just great.
          ...knitting up items to take as well as planning a knitted outfit for the bun in the oven of a sweet friend (It's so fun to knit for little babies).
          ...sipping a yummy brew of coconut chai (with almond milk, please!)
          ...packing, both mentally and literally. The former for a trip to Dubai and the latter for this trip to NC, it's so sad/funny that I have to continually be...
          ...reminding myself that I don't own these fabulous english riding boots (or these either), like I said, sad/funny mostly sad though.
          ...containing my utter excitement at visiting with some beautiful and dear people in the coming weeks and months (!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!).

What will you be doing?

Friday, 14 October 2011

Encourage One Another {Patient Love}

Don't forget about our Early Smiles sale
Check the post for the coupon and a chance for free shipping.
As I type this, I'm sitting/working/knitting/people watching in a coffee shop and I must say that this it probably one of my favorite things to do when I really need to get things done. I've got my headphones for when I really need to focus and can easily pop them out for when I need a break (love, love, love people watching). When it comes to the coffee I'm not really a frufru girl when I'm out (most because it's too expensive) but I love a good frothed cup of joe when I'm at home, but then you already know I'm just a social coffee drinker. Any other social coffee drinkers out there?
This weekend I'll be scurrying around arranging my samples ready to take to a few brick-and-mortar shop while in the lovely North Carolina. What are your weekend plans?

For this weeks encouraging link, I wanted to share with you the following post on
I think there are some great thoughts written and would love to know your own thoughts on the matter!

Be sure to participate here,

Monday, 10 October 2011

Early Smiles {a sale!}

Things That Make Me Smile:
yarn shops
a particular little man running with chubby cheeks
black and white photos
lying in the sun, at the beach
hunting for sea glass
wearing knits (especially handmade)
cold weather and hot drinks/munchies
playing boggle with friends and family 
lacto-fermented carrots (call me crazy)
and particularly,

What makes you smile? 
Tell me and you could qualify for free shipping on your next purchase
(Bet you want to comment now, don't you? Well, finish reading and then comment)

Now, back to our sale announcement, I call it the
Lemons and Blueberries
Early Smiles Sale
As I'll be away from my closet studio during the Christmas sale/purchasing season, I wanted to give you a 30% off coupon code, good for anything in the shop as well as custom orders! At the time of your purchase, please type in the code: 1EARLYSMILE
and you'll have 30, yes, 30% off your purchase (custom, ready-made, or vintage!). Go ahead, get over there and smile.

Wednesday, 5 October 2011

Encourage One Another {book clutch DIY}

{sorry, source is unknown}

For this weeks contribution at Deep Roots At Home weekly series, Encourage One AnotherI decided to share a crafty idea. : ) I was first introduced to the book clutch from this Girls With Glasses video a while ago and just loved them, not the $325 kind of love, just the "Oh, I bet you I can make that for less!" kind of love. Which is why I was so delighted to come across this book clutch tutorial! It seems like the steps could be shortened and possibly streamlined so please let me know if anyone tries this! I already have a clutch and am looking for a book that is just the right size...

Do you have an encouraging link you'd like to share?
Then, click on the link above to post your encouraging link! 
Topics can range from yummy recipes, character building posts, insightful posts, or practical, everyday tips.

Tuesday, 4 October 2011


I know, I know, you think those flowers are pretty cute but despite your searching, you can't find them in the shop!
Well, that's because they are a part of the freebies you will receive when you order anything during the month of October!
That's right, each L & B item comes with a free of charge posey,
just because. : )

So, in an earlier post, I shared with you some of my goals for September, and as it is the beginning of a new month, I thought we ought to review and check off some things on our list as well as listing what we actually did: *sigh* here we go,

Organize Closet (again)---hehe, yeah, this halfway happened. : )
Create business goals for 2012
Post Fall 2011 Line for Shop (knitting, knitting, knitting)
Make two more projects using UK yarn (post to come)
Begin video series (Youtube, here I come!)

Research, research, research for my Light bulb Idea (again, post to come!)

And here are some of the things I actually did (that didn't make the list above),
Researched things for Etsy shop (lots of fine print reading)
Collected more items for my Light Bulb Idea
Knocked another "craft to-do" off my mental list
Odds and ends that I can't think of...
For our final list, here are some of the plans for October,
Pack gifts for Dubai friends
Plan and announce "Early Christmas Sale" for L&B
Create channel and post Youtube video
List another item to the vintage. section in the shop
For the first time, ship a sold item to an international destination (way down under!)
Contain my excitement of meeting several wonderful young women at this conference
(Are you attending as well? Let me know, I'd love to meet with you!)

I'm so looking forward to our time during the conference in North Carolina! We plan on making a mini-family roadtrip out of it and are driving up a week early to enjoy Charleston, a bit of the beach, and a fabulous little town called Hickory (I. can't. wait. A!!!); the fall colors, weather, and the search for fun little gifts along the way are just a few of the things I'm anticipating.

I'm also so excited about our first early-Christmas sale.
The sale will last for the entire month of October, right in time for our shop vacation (which will last until the end of December, I won't be able to ship things while I'm in Dubai!). Keep checking back for the details and coupon codes, also for the cut-off date for custom orders. 

What are your October plans?

Wednesday, 28 September 2011

vintage+a sermon

I'm very pleased to show you the new vintage section in the etsy shop!
At last, I've made the decision to list some of my estate sale finds and treasures, though I must confess that it was a bit difficult to decide what to sell; most of my thoughts go like this,

"Okay, I've got to list at least--oh, wait, I remember buying this! It was in that old house with the--no, Elena, just list it, when are you possibly going to use this anyway? Well, maybe someday I'll need a really small decorative bowl and--oh, mercy, just list it!"

So, in the end, I convinced myself decided to pull a few things from my stash and see how they sell in the shop; this week there are a few estate sales that I'm planning on checking out, so hopefully I'll be able to add more things in the shop.

Also, along the "vintage" thread, I saw this diy project for recovering books, vintage-style, on the ever resourceful Design*Sponge (I just love that place); let me know if you try it out, I'd love to see how your covers come out! Currently on the project list are a few painting projects (I've been loving that lately), a lace baby dress, and a shawl for my Mama; so, don't really have the time to devote to this but I'm definitely putting it on my "future project" list (I'm a big fan of lists. : )
What's on your project list?

Also, I wanted to share with you the link that I posted on Deep Roots At Home for this weeks "Encourage One Another" link-up. This week shared this sermon on Humility: A Blessing from Dr. Peter Masters of the Metropolitan Tabernacle. I was first introduced to Dr. Masters when my parents visited during a trip to the UK last year; they were so blessed by his sermons and we've been listening to them online for quite a while.
Dr. Masters precision and burden for the Word of God to be preached rightly makes for a rich and encouraging sermon. (also, I'm a huge fan of accents so it's a nice feature. ; )
Check it out and let me know what you think!

Tuesday, 27 September 2011

This Week I Am...

...planning on transforming those two boring, blue pillows you see above into interesting burlap covered pillows (one down, one more to go!).

...putting on my make-up artist hat Thursday and Friday (my sister and friends are making a film and I get the privilege of making the actors faces "screen-ready").

...hoping to get a warm cup of something at "the" coffee shop on Friday (yep, we're filming at a coffee shop), it would be really nice if the coffee was complimentary, but...we're still working on that. ; )

...painting name signs for my sister and a friend. After creating this project, I've discovered my inner acrylic painter; yes, it's wonderful.

...working on a swirly, knitted dress for my niece! She's just gonna look so edible in it; quick knits are so gratifying. Especially quick knits for little ones with chubby cheeks.

...looking forward to some fun fellowship with two sweet friends. Salmon salad is on the menu and I think I'll break out the special apricot black tea (and, of course, coffee)

...writing letters to kindred spirits. I'm devoted to snail mail; the old-fashioned feel of writing your thoughts on paper is so wonderful, it gives me a chance to collect and organize my thoughts (which is always appreciated!).

...waiting for a mysterious phone call, at least, it's mysterious to you, I already know who'll be calling.

...wondering if Fall will ever come, then I walk into my closet, try on my favorite sweater and remember that yes, there was a time I layered up for the cold weather. I just. need. to. be. patient.

...curious what you're doing this week, we'll what's on your calendar?

Monday, 26 September 2011

Inspiring People {Hannah Mendenhall}

For this installment of "Inspiring People", I'm very pleased to introduce to you,
Hannah Mendenhall 
Perhaps you remember the "Inspiring People" post about her sister, Sarah Mendenall (Hannah was the one who captured the photo!). Hannah has much to keep her busy in her home; as a marvelous example of being an industrious and productive young woman in her family, Hannah keeps a yummy raw food blog {Immer Wachsen}, does freelance design work {Little Light Creative}, as well as managing a cute shop on Etsy {Little Light Creative: the shop}; all of this in addition to the ways she contributes to her family! 
Side note: This Curmudgeons Illustration, "hope" print, and this Mark 9:24 print are some of my favorite items in her Etsy shop (check them out, they're pretty adorable).

Hannah has graciously agreed to  share with us a bit about herself, her work, and inspiration.
All of the photos in this post come from Hannah herself (with links to the yummy recipes below each photo!), enjoy.

Tell us about yourself (who you are/values etc...)!

What a question. I am a follower of Christ in whom I find all hope. Christ crucified is everything. I want to give Him glory in what I do, so I hope that my work as a designer and photographer reflect that. 

I am 23 and live at home with my family where endless creative projects keep me busy. However, I would ultimately like to spend more time outdoors. I have a wild dream of living outdoors for a year! From the intricacy of pixels to the grandeur of creation, I love both! 

Can you tell us a bit about how you first got started?
A longgg time ago I took a photography class at my public high school. We used manual cameras, black and white film, and a dark room. To this day, I feel so blessed to have had the experience. From there, I was asked to work on the yearbook staff, where I first met Mac and Adobe. The rest is history :)

What is your favorite thing about what you do?
For food styling, I do love sharing my "strange" eating habits with others. I initially wanted to create a site that Christians would feel comfortable learning about a raw and whole foods lifestyle. 

For graphic design, there is a constant need. It's a great feeling to know something you designed is being used and seen by others!

What inspires you?
God's Creation and His Word. 

What bits of wisdom have you most appreciated in regards to your work?

The Proverbs 31 woman and the book Do Hard Things by Brett and Alex Harris. 

How do you promote your work?
The best success I've had with freelance work is by word of mouth. Although I tweet and facebook, face to face communication results in more jobs. 

As for food styling, it's all online. I'm a featured chef on and I post my recent recipes just about everywhere that is applicable. 

Can you share with us a bit of the goals/plans that you have for your business?
For graphic design, I want to do far more freelance work. It would be awesome to do freelance almost full time.

For food styling, I hope to increase my blog traffic and raise money through sponsorships in order to support different ministries. I cannot bear the thought of just doing work for recognition and money. I have a job to do and my King has given me the gifts and talents to accomplish it! A recipe book could possibly be on my dream to-do list as well. I wouldn't mind styling for raw chefs either. 

What advice would you give to those who are aspiring to have creative businesses of their own?
Do NOT give up. Be patient and get used to hard work. 

Thank you very much for sharing with us, Hannah! 

Thursday, 22 September 2011

Encourage One Another {Cait}

{Pookie, taken around this time last year.}

So sorry for the confusion yesterday! 
The links are redirected and working now 
(thank you Mrs. F for alerting me!)

It's that time of the week again at, Deep Roots At Home!
Last week, we looked at Betsy's post from Part of the Main (pop over to that one if you missed it!).
This week I'd like to encourage you younger ladies (mostly applies--but not limited to, in-your-twenties) 
with the blog of my sweet friend, Cait from What Kady Did.
If you'll remember, I featured her a while back in a Project Inspiration post (hehe, that really didn't make it to being a weekly feature!) called Birds and Sparkles. As a married (mummy-to-be!) young woman, she writes about life married life in Dubai. She's also a wonderfully creative person who enjoys filling her home with comforting, fun things. Hop on over and be inspired and encouraged! 

Monday, 19 September 2011



This past weekend we were traveling between Austin and Houston, 
a perfectly very normal occurrence around these parts, but what wasn't normal was pulling over at the first sight of a "The Biggest Sale Ever" sign. This happens enough at home but not between cities; typically we fly through, trying to make it to our squishy loved ones just as speedily timely as we can, but--praise the Lord!--my Dad can be kinda spontaneous sometimes and as he knew that I am in a "collecting eclectic plates/platters" mood, he pulled over. 
I'm so glad he did.
You see, I'm on a hunt; about fifty plates, teacups/saucers, and various serving platters are the object and I'm excited. Can't tell you exactly why yet (I need to make sure this is actually going to happen before I tell all), just know that I'm excitedly searching. The end.

Also, this past weekend, I was reminded why I love sewing (quick results). I made a nursing cover for a sweet friend (can't wait to meet you, Asher!) and I made pillow covers for the first time; perhaps one of the favorite parts was the fact that I was making them out of coffee burlap sacks collected from a wee coffee shop in New York (we miss you R family). Photographed finished results to come. 

In other news, I'm also looking for frames. Ugly ones, big ones, ornate ones, small ones, dainty ones (you get the idea), all to create a trail; a memory trail going upstairs (rather like the first picture in this one). 
Yesterday I found one, ???? more to go! As it is kind of a weird shade of green, I'll probably paint it black (or black or mustard or pale grey? hm...let's see); for now it's in my room (next to the finds from this weekends spontaneousness). This has opened a can of creative thoughts, mostly about creating my silhouettes of my family, to be mixed with the photo/memory trail, BUT I think I'll collect more frames before I start.

Any new projects brewing for you on this fine--wet!!--Monday morning?

Friday, 16 September 2011

friday musings

{Sleeping Eva} 

You might have noticed the absence of the {Dubai Covers} page (don't look for it, it's already gone), well, the time has come to add the inventory to our shop! Though this feature did quite meet my expectations, I've decided to employ my "reuse, reuse, reuse" mentality and am posting the unsold covers in my Etsy shop!
Mica and I still planning our trip and thanks to some other forms of fundraising, have enough collected for our trip! I'm so, so, so excited and have continued my mental packing of suitcases. : )
As the planning continues I have a mysterious question (don't you just love it??), how many of my readers are located in the London, England or Frankfurt, Germany area? Just wondering...

As an interesting bit of random information, I'm also wondering how many of my readers play musical instruments? This question has no mystery, sorry. Currently, I'm learning to play the piano again (Thanks so my fabulous teacher, Amy Sheehan) and one of the songs I'm working on is Beethoven's Sonatina in F (if that little seven-year-old can play it, by george, so can I).

And before I part with you on this fine Friday, for my estate sale/thrifting friends,
here is a great resource I use:
Ever used it? I will be this weekend, I'm on a hunt for plates. Lots of them. And teacups with saucers in addition to my usual, "Gee I Wonder If They Have This" list. Yet another mystery for you (isn't it exciting?).

There's still time to add your link to the 
Encourage-One Another link-up!
Click the button for more details.

Thursday, 15 September 2011

happy thursday

Generally, I try not to have too many loose-ended projects going. Generally. However, I've decided to add yet another art project to my list, all in the name of my sister I might add. This October we will be celebrating the completion of her high school studies and since she has graciously left the decorating/styling/detail work to me (which I just love!), I decided to take this time to create something similar to this piece of artwork. The finished product will be the centerpiece of the little stage area I've mentally set-up. It's one of the biggest projects I've ever started (note the use of the work started) so I practicing on a smaller canvas to start.
Mica plays really enjoys playing the violin and has chosen Pagnini's Caprice No. 24 (which is her favorite piece to play and I to which love listening) for my practice canvas; it's a wonderfully complicated and busy piece which will make for a fun project, I think. I'll be documenting my progress along the way so watch out. : ) Depending on how it comes out I'm considering adding them to my shop as well (hint: give me your feedback!).

What's the biggest project you've begun?

Wednesday, 14 September 2011

Encourage One Another

{previous project: a cowl that is waiting to be worn! come fall, come quickly!}

Today I have the immense pleasure of participating in an 
with Jacqueline from Deep Roots At Home!

This is an exciting blogging project based on 1Thessalonians 5:11,
Therefore, encourage and build one another up, just as you are doing.
It is designed to encourage the mother, the daughter, the young woman in a plethora of ways; from cleaning/cooking tips and recipes to homemaking and alternative medicine tips (oh, yeah), this projects aims to intentionally spur one another in life and godliness. Participants are encouraged to post links every Wednesday (via Linky, see post for details), these links can be an encouraging article, inspiring photo, or fun new recipe/kitchen tip.

So what did I post? Well, I've been reading the delightful blog of Betsy from Part of the Main, for some time now. Each post is well-written with care and makes me think how wonderful it would be to be neighbors. She has been a great encouragement to me in homemaking, blooming where you're planted, and delighting in motherhood; she is currently living in the wonderful UK and often posts on life there (It transports me every time!). Her recent post, Don't Be A Stranger, renewed my excitement in living out the gospel to "strangers", and to search out opportunities when I can do just that.

Would you care to participate? 
Click on the button below for more encouraging links and information on this project!


Tuesday, 13 September 2011

A Wonderful Kind of Ugly

Do you have an item/accessory/trinket that you just love...but everyone else thinks it's hideous?
Well, the pair of shoes you see is my "Wonderful Ugly" item. Those Simple shoes are probably the most comfortable pair of shoes that I own; I could wear them all day long, they're just practical and super comfy. However, around these parts, they're known as my "granny shoes" (I prefer to call them my "Whole Foods Shoes"). 
This reminds me of my journey selling on Etsy; at first, I had to remind myself "not to despise meager beginnings"; to do what I could with what I had. Rather like my "Whole Foods/Granny Shoes", my methods weren't terribly streamlined or professional (and are still being refined) but practical and they worked for the time being (I'm glad to know that I did the best with what I knew at the time!).  I'm so thankful for the helpful people and resources that I have discovered and am still discovering (You know who you are)! I'll be you have a "Wonderful Ugly" item as well, don't you?    ; )

Also, I wanted to introduce you to a great, new resource for selling your crafts online, in fact, it's called How to Sell Your Crafts Online (groundbreaking title, I know ; ). It is being released on Amazon in October and seems somewhat similar to one of my favorite how-to books, just more relevant to Etsy sellers.
What sorts of books/resources do you find helpful? Let me know, I'm always looking to expand my library!

Monday, 12 September 2011


"Sometimes I have days where I just feel overwhelmed. Not defeated, not hopeless, not even stressed....just, overwhelmed. Usually in part by the amount of things that I need to accomplish for my clients, my business and my life, and in part by the things life throws at me that are completely out of my control."

is a fabulous wedding photographer based out of Virginia, 
(here's her website and blog!)and happens to be one of my favorite photographers;
You might have already seen her on my {Inspirations} page.
I would describe her work as crisp, creative, and very cheerful.
Her bright and friendly personality is pretty adorable, as you can see in these 
snippets of her recent wedding. (as captured by the talented Rebekah Murray)
It was on Tori's blog that the quoted passages were found~
~thanks so much, Tori, for letting me share them here!

That could easily describe my own thoughts in lately.
As I've hinted in past posts, I'm working on making changes in how I run my business and where I want to go with it; much time, research, and thought has been put into these changes and while I can't unveil the changes yet (nope, they're not quite ready!), I'm excited about them. : )
This combined with other things going that have piled up were the reasons that I was so thankful to read that post ; somehow, knowing that someone else felt the same way made my own struggle easier. What's more is the way Tori continued:

"But it's when I reach the state of this kind of overwhelming thought and feeling that I'm beyond grateful to be able to look to the One who more than knows what to do with all of the things set before me. All of the things that I'm responsible for, all of the things I feel ill-equipped to handle, and all of the things I can't understand and can't control. It's the reassurance of His all-knowing, all-understanding and all-loving ways that remind me I don't have to try to figure out how to juggle things that overwhelm me. I just need to look to Him, one day at a time, and walk in the grace and peace He freely and overwhelmingly provides to cover over even the most confusing life situations."

Which is truly the most comforting and sustaining in this "overwhelming" time; I can be grateful for these times because it is now that I am driven to my knees in a deeper sense; these are the times when I am made aware of my own inability and weaknesses in different ways, thus giving me a greater appreciation for His sufficiency and strength. I don't have to do this on my own.

Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, 
the Father of mercies and God of all comfort, 
who comforts us in all our affliction, 
so that we may be able to comfort those who are in any affliction, 
with the comfort with which we ourselves are comforted by God. 

Monday, 5 September 2011

There's No Place Like...


It's been very nearly a week since I was last in Austin. 
Not surprisingly, I really miss rinsing diapers (crazy, I know), wiping chubby hands, and getting bitten by Wee Teeth (long story); the rhythm of my home is pretty different from the hustle and bustle of little people laughing and ricocheting around. In case you get the wrong impression, we Marques girlies can get pretty crazy in our own way.
Since being home, I've been settling into my new routine (read: trying to get used to a house without littles--we miss you, Hoods!) and since I've become a huge fan of lists, I made a list of things I'd like to do for September, wanna peak?

Organize Closet (again)
I've become inspired by Kendi's organizational post
Create business goals for 2012
Post Fall 2011 Line for Shop (knitting, knitting, knitting)
Make two more projects using UK yarn (post to come)
We have a trip to NC coming in October and I want to be ready!
Begin video series (Youtube, here I come!)
Research, research, research for my Light bulb Idea (again, post to come!)

So, there you have a few of the things I'm working on; thankfully, I don't really see anything currently on the calendar that would prevent me from checking these items checked off, aside from the fascinating book I'm reading. I'm about 3/4's of the way through The Help and so far, I've really enjoyed it (thanks so much for lending it, J!); a kindred spirit loaned it to me, we have similar taste in novels and this is no exception. I love the feel and flow of Kathryn Stockett's work. It reminds me very much of Harper Lee in the sense that I can clearly "see" everything happening and I am quickly familiar with the characters; the story is set at the tail end of one of my favorite times in history and I love the way Stockett has incorporated so much of the culture and happenings of that time. Have any of you read it/seen the film? 
{Note: the following is not at all to meant to downgrade fiction reading, it's just something I haven't done in a while.} I haven't read a fun, fiction book in quite a while, so I feel the need to ration the time that I spend reading; it's dreadful, but somehow I feel like I'm wasting time when I read fiction (that. sounds. so. prudish.). Honestly, I haven't read such an intriguing novel since, The Chosen (loved that one) or The Red House Mystery (delightful story!), but like Pinterest, I ration the amount of time I spend reading. 
Are you mostly a fiction or non-fiction reader? I'd love any of your suggestions!

Wednesday, 10 August 2011

Fresh Baby

For you formed my inward parts;

you knitted me together in my mother's womb.

14 I praise you, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made.

Wonderful are your works;

my soul knows it very well.

Behold, children are a heritage from the Lord,

the fruit of the womb a reward.

4 Like arrows in the hand of a warrior

are the children of one's youth.

5 Blessed is the man

who fills his quiver with them!

He shall not be put to shame

when he speaks with his enemies in the gate.

As you've read on my other blog, my dear Sweet Pea Niece is here!
Since her arrival, each day has been wonderfully filled with cuddling, changing, washing, and caring for this new little one. Some sweet ladies from Nicole's church have been very attentive and brought scrumptious dinners too!
I'd nearly forgotten how wonderful new babies smell, especially the tiny part underneath their chins; Eva is a particularly sweet baby (as her Aunt, I am privileged to say this), she doesn't fuss until she's hungry and is practically perfect.
The past few days my Mom has taken my place in Austin and I've been here in Houston, enjoying a few days at home. Mia acted as our Little Stowaway and it's been a fun pleasure to have her here by herself! PBJ's and ice cream have been an almost daily occurrence
(my Dad is a wonderful Grandpa. :)

Oh, and I wanted to show you this new apron I got from one of my favorites stores (courtesy of the sale room, that is); yes, ladies and gentlemen, that is a maxi-apron--with pockets!
I've found it comes in high handy when you're washing dishes and a sticky fingered munchkin attempts climbing up your skirt and the pocket feature is very nice too.
In between changing/washing diapers, baking pavlova, and kissing Little Munchkins,
I've been doing a bit of reading and here are some interesting links, enjoy!

Reliable resources that the book for this film is excellent and
I'm hoping to read it before seeing it(I'm a big book fan).

You've seen Sarah on this space before, and here is a new blog feature she's started!

That's all for now!

Thursday, 28 July 2011

Ah ha!

Here I am.
If you've kept up with my "Mary Poppins Writes" series, you'll know that today is a day of preparation and hopefully a labor and deliver of my newest niece!
My dear sister is at the hospital and is carrying on bravely, the Chicklets and I have been keeping her and the Bun in the Oven in prayer and dear thoughts all day.
Praise the Lord for His perfect timing!
As I type this, children are napping and the a/c is running (a delightful combination), in an hour or so I'll get supper started and possibly make a run to the store for ingredients for Straweberry Limeade! An sweet acquaintance made it recently and I've been officially inspired to do the same, all we need are the strawberries. :) I may also get some items I'll be needing for the hospitality snacks that are on the menu for hungry visitors who come to get a glimpse of the Fresh Little Raisin. Pavlova, Cream Scones, Strawberry Lemonade Bars, tea, and coffee are to be served on the "new" vintage trays
They're just so adorable!
There's two of the smaller ones and one big tray, perfect for decorating the house, even if it's just temporary. :) My dear nieces were so patient and went with me to an estate sale last weekend, I think they enjoyed it almost as much as I did. Using this site, I've been able to find more sales, so that is hopefully what we'll be doing this weekend as well!

In the meantime, stay tuned for baby pictures to come! I'll be snapping away lots of pictures of my third niece, just please be patient as I'll be a bit busy the next few days. :)


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