Sunday, December 28, 2014

That woman is blessed!

Do you see that woman, the one with the long brown hair? She seems worried too often, and yet seems to be trying hard to put her trust in Someone bigger than herself. Did you know, that she is blessed? 

Do you see that woman being pushed down the hospital hall way to the operating room? She is scared! She has never been in the hospital before and facing the removal of her appendix is frightening, but will be the means of restoring her health! Do you know what? She is blessed! 

Do you see her now laying on the couch, home from the hospital and gazing at the tree with her 3 young ones and dog milling about and tears in her eyes because she is home and knowing she is blessed! 

Do you see her now, standing in front of the fridge, wondering what to eat because now for one month she is on a strict diet to let her body recover? She feels a bit blue about missing out on the holiday foods, yet she feels blessed knowing this is the start of a healthier lifestyle that God chose to make necessary for her. 

Do you see her now feeling kind of badly because she can't bake up her storm of cookies like she usually does and wondering what to give to friends and slowly accepting that sometimes no gift is required and realizing that the greatest gift is YOU- JESUS! 

Do you see that woman with a husband who can fix anything and who uncomplainingly serves, works, fathers and loves his family and has been her best friend these 8 years? She is blessed and she knows it as they celebrate their eighth wedding anniversary in the ho-hom of everyday life. 

Do you see that woman, painting from her messy little work area, trying to create beauty and share it? Do you see her there, wondering if her art will sell and if it will bless anyone the way the creating of it has blessed her? Do you see her agonizing over which pictures to list and how to best describe her items. Does she know HOW blessed she is to get to use her hobbies and work a bit from home? 

Do you know how blessed you are dear one? I do! 

I am that woman that God has chosen to bless with His smile. 

- - - 

Thank you for your prayers everyone who knew about my surgery! 

Sunday, December 14, 2014

Christmas in Macro

Thursday morning I came into the hospital after a sleepless night of stomach pains. I thought I'd be home again in no time, even drove myself in. But one doctor led to another, and in the end I was in the operating room for my appendix.

It is Sunday and I am still in the hospital, hoping to be released tomorrow. Today is Sunday, the 3rd Sunday of advent.

It is hard to be stuck in the hospital when the day is so lovely and you know everyone is making Christmas preparations.

And yet for several weeks I had this feeling that this year had to be different, that there needed to be a quiet in my life and a refocus on Christmas.

Now as I focus my thoughts on what has been and the unknown of recovery and Christmas I know that God has a reason for keeping my planning smaller this year. I usually bake tons of cookies to share, this year that won't happen. With all of the comforts and even diet of my normal life stripped away I have time to see my world differently.

I feel as if I have been given a new lens through which to see this season. And as I examine where I have been and look at Christmas through my macro lens this is what I see (because in macro  you focus on detail).

Look, there is the baby.
Not just any baby, but a baby intended to save this world. 

Look back a week and you can see his mother preparing, waiting, expecting, longing to meet her child. She would have been huge with child, and heavy. And as she and Joseph headed to Bethlehem should would have been uncomfortable, jostled, perhaps even in pain. 

Turning my lens forward I see that we too are a people longing for peace, joy, calm. We are expecting , we are waiting. Groaning and awaiting the coming of our Savior once again. Yet everyone is distracted, and runs about madly. Turning their thoughts to so many other things- their focus is too broad- their true purpose lost. 

Look again, focus in on the baby. There He is. In all his quiet glory. He came to innocent, weak, small, a child. Why? For you, for me, for eternity. 

If you look ahead and focus your lens on His future you will see the reason He came. It did not end at Christmas, or in the small baby born. But His story lives on in the crucifixion and Resurrection of a King who came to save and redeem His beloved world. 

So where is your focus? Which lens are you using?

Before I was using a wide-view lens and all the rush and bustle and gift buying of Christmas was taking all my attention and focus. But now, as I lie in my bed and think and ponder I see that this season, this Christmas, this year, this day and each opportunity I am given I will seek to direct our thoughts and my thoughts and my children's thoughts to Jesus.

Yes, we will have gifts. We will have a tree. But lets not get overwhelmed with the bustle, lets take the time close the doors and turn off the technology and marvel over this baby, and meet this King who came to save our broken world.

Tuesday, December 9, 2014

A Very Real Thanksgiving

Our celebrations started with a bang this year by my being asking to help some local church youth celebrate Thanksgiving American style. Which really means I had to plan and oversee the preparations for the meal. I made them 5 pies to crown the occasion and even got interviewed so they'd know why we celebrate.

My cousins even got to show up for the occasion which made the whole thing more special for both the youth and myself. The youth devoured the small turkey and seemed enjoy the evening and food.

We celebrated our family Thanksgiving Saturday. But it had to be done properly this year and with a real live turkey. Yes, LIVE.

Usually we do without a turkey at Thanksgiving because they don't sell them in the grocery store and are hard to come by. This year my husband did some searching and came up with a live one. He took my cousin's boyfriend along to help hold it while they brought it home. (Much to our amazement when covered with a bag they are very calm to transport in ones lap).

Cody and my husband did the job quickly and efficiently and we were proud to have a turkey on the table this year.

Notes for those needing to butcher your own turkey:
-get a helper who can take the ordeal.
- prepare a large pot of boiling water for immersing to the turkey to remove the feathers.
- be sure to remove all internal organs.
- be sure to butcher and chill at list 24 hours in advance so that the meat has time to cool.
- do your homework before beginning this job.
(for further info be in contact with my husband or Cody who were the ones who did the job).

We had a good old Thanksgiving meal, complete with a made from scratch- green bean casserole, stuffing, candied carrots, mashed potatoes, gravy, corn, pecan pie, apple pie and honey cake!

It was so good to have my cousins here and to get to celebrate with family this Thanksgiving!

I am so thankful for the blessed time we got to share together, it was a wonderful time for getting to know one another better.

Monday, December 8, 2014


Weak, unimporant, hidden, unseen was I . 
Suddenly, I held power in my hand. 
It was strange, and heavy, like a cold, iron sword. 
I handled it carefully, wondering how to use it, or drop it as it seemed to chill through me. 
I examined its blade. 
I considered its strength. 
I thought of the results of power, even a minute one . . . 

Keeping it Real

Christmas is fast approaching. The kids are waiting in anticipation for the 24th when they know we will open gifts.

Every day is a rush to live life- get homework done, fulfill my commitments, decorate, and somehow try to keep our eyes fixed on Jesus.

But there are these moments when we all melt down. My kids refuse to listen and stubbornness and sinful attitudes reign. I grow sad and weary as I try to teach my young ones that disobedience is neither effective nor pleasing and try to speak truth to their young hearts. Yet sometimes even this fails and they glare back with belligerence in their eyes and I wonder, "How do I keep their hearts tender?"

I love this season of expectation. I long to make our home festive with decorations and prepare for the season by passing love and joy to those around me. Yet, I feel that something different is required this year. I feel like I must readjust my life and not get swept away by the tide of culture.

And so I stop and ponder and wonder how to "redeem" these dear old traditions and make them into something that turns our hearts towards heaven and the real reason we celebrate.

Saturday, December 6, 2014

Thank God for Family

Today my cousins headed on in their journey and I felt sad and emotional as I walked away waving to them on the train. Having family visit me here in Latvia is so rare. I felt honored they came- honored they took the time and the money to spend 10 days of their lives here.

We had marvelous times, hope to post photos later on that. We had fun talks and a great photo shoot as you have seen of late.

But I just want to take this moment and give thanks for family, and friends. I want you and me to be more thankful and appreciative when we have those we love near. I want those I love to know how I miss them living so far away and how I treasure every way you show you remember me even though I live an ocean a way.

And I want to tell you guys- Joy, Matthew, Daniel and Cody- it was so fun having you here and I am going to miss playing Scrabble with you all and our nice chats. Safe travels!

And thanks for sharing your talents with us :)

Thursday, December 4, 2014

New in My Shop

New items just in time for Christmas, stay tuned for more to come in the next few days!

Turquoise Peacock Silk Scarf . Art Nouveau Peacock . Peacock Feathers Scarf

Friday, November 21, 2014

Through the Tunnel

A week has passed since I got back from my Mom-cation to living and surviving my real life.

The temp of real life is so fast, so rushed, so full. At times I feel overwhelmed by it all- yet in a positive light now.

This week I celebrated my birthday and meeting up with other friends who have infants I saw that they too are struggling and overwhelmed like I felt just 2 weeks ago before I went on my little vacation.

I have this visual picture of Moms going through this tunnel. Being a Mom and raising a child are by far the most difficult task I have ever known.

As a Mommy I know how you feel when you are sleepless, over-tired, and over-dramatic. A ticking time bomb waiting to explode with the smallest spark. A fussy toddler, a disobedient child, a word thoughtlessly spoken- each of this fuel to kindle your already raging soul-fire.

I know the guilt of feeling you ought to be a better, more patient, more organized, more healthy, more ANYTHING Mom.

I know the longing for peace- wholeness- and a healthy, harmony filled family.

I know that walking through these days of having young children seems like a dark tunnel at times. It may seem you have no time for you and your identity is disappearing into days spent doing monotonous everydays.

But YOU will survive. You will thrive. You will LIVE.

I can see that I have come through that tunnel and I had no idea how that could occur, For me the break into light was my mini vacation. For you it might be something else, but I want to encourage you to find time to be alone (or with your infant0 and sort through your emotions.

Today when I opened my Bible these words jumped out- perfectly spoken on this topic. ,

Then Jesus said, "Let's go off by ourselves to a quiet place and rest awhile."He said this because there were so many people coming and going that Jesus and his apostles didn't even have time to eat.

Mark 6:30-31 NLT

I know dear one that you might feel badly taking a few hours or days for yourself. I felt the same way, but the old saying goes, "If Mama ain't happy, ain't nobody happy."

A quote I read the other day blessed me much, it is so true and helps keep perspective in our search for joy in life:
For most of life, nothing wonderful happens. If you don't enjoy getting up and working and finishing your work and sitting down to a meal with family or friends, then the chances are you're not going to be very happy. If someone bases his/her happiness on major events like a great job, huge amounts of money, a flawlessly happy marriage or a trip to Paris, that person isn't going to be happy much of the time. If, on the other hand, happiness depends on a good breakfast, flowers in the yard, a drink or a nap, then we are more likely to live with quite a bit of happiness."
-- Andy Rooney

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

Love This

Sometimes I come across something Etsy that I just LOVE. This artist is featured today on Etsy and I fell in love with her work when I saw it. Probably because I spend so much of my live in the kitchen. Her paintings would make a great gift for anyone who loves to cook, bake or eat :)

 French croissant illustrated recipe print, Kitchen art, Food poster, Bakery decor, 8X10 cake art, Kitchen decor Food watercolor illustration
Kitchen art print poster, A macaron a day, 8X10, Watercolor macaroon illustration, food art, French pastel Home decor

The perfect Cup of Tea, Tea poster, Watercolor painting, Kitchen print, Teapot illustration, Botanical tea plant, Green Pink 8X10 home decor

Thursday, November 13, 2014

Why every Mom needs a Mom-cation

After 6 1/2 years of being a Mom and all the joys and stress that goes with three kids and a puppy and life I can tell you I was wound up, stressed out and easily angered. I found myself using the word "nervous" to describe myself and I had never done so before. I found myself impatient and tired, and just worn out.

My sister needed a break from her life, she invited me to meet her in England. I hesitantly agreed; with the requirement that I would go only if my husband could get off work for those 5 days. He did so- joyfully- and I found myself headed on a Mom-cation.

I must say the weeks and days leading up to that I was worried, feeling very guilty and wondering how everyone would do with me gone. I felt so scared as I flew away, wondering if I'd make it home safely again. I consoled myself with the thought, "if I am meant to die it will happen whether I am flying or at home." (Pathetic? I know. But I was feeling dramatic).

6 days and 5 nights later I got home and now know that was exactly what I needed to get my life back where it needed to be.

So here is why every Mom needs a vacation.

  1. You have time to think, sleep, BE and sit in silence. 
  2. You come back feeling like a new person; the things that would have made you lose it before are no longer so irritating because you have "unwound."
  3. You come home realizing once again that your husband is the best man and Dad and that he is TOTALLY capable of running the house without you or your constant bossing. He is the DADDY not the baby-sitter. 
  4. You see your husband and your marriage with new eyes of appreciation, which makes you feel like you are starting a new phase in your lives or perhaps a 2nd honeymoon :) 
  5. You have time to just be you. If you wanna shop, you do it. If you wanna chill in a coffee shop- go for it. The thing is that no one has any demands on your time and you can just live it up, or down ALONE or with a friend or sister :)
  6. You get your life readjusted and back on track and have time to gain the perspective you just couldn't grasp while you were at home. 
  7. You realize you are strong in ways that you had forgotten or never knew (depending on what you do for your mom-cation). 
  8. You see your life when you come back through the lenses of peace- which makes you value your blessings where you had forgotten how. And prepares you for the challenges facing you.
  9. You have time to do the things you want to do: journaling, sleeping, shopping, sitting, walking.
  10. You realize that your position in life at this moment as a Mommy and wife is the best thing in the world and your favorite place to be and all you needed was to step back so you could see the whole picture.  . 

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

Home Again

There is nothing like going on a trip that makes a person thankful to get home again. Last week I headed to England to meet my sister from the States.

We had a grand time with relatives and then headed to London for a couple of days.

We nearly became hunch backs under the weight of our huge backpacks and found a new favorite coffee joint to lighten our loads. I love how this place wants to make their food healthier in our modern fast-food world. Not to mention their muffins and smoothies are to die for :)

I am so happy to be home again, no matter how grouchy my kids are (due to colds). I feel so rested and "unwound." And am so blessed to have a husband who can manage the fort with 3 kids and a pup. He even brought me yellow roses to the airport to welcome me home. Sweet, and so romantic! This was the first and only time we have been apart for so long since we married nearly 8 years ago. I am so thankful for that man of mine!

In order to get the holiday season kick started for my shop I am offering you a coupon code for 10% off your order in my shop now- use the code CHRISTMAS.. Don't wait too long for your holiday orders! Scarves are so in and you see people wearing them everywhere all over London. Plus I can customize your orders if they are placed now :)


Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Faith and Life

Faith is the confidence that what we hope for will actually happen; it gives us assurance about things we cannot see. 
Hebrew 11:1 NLT

It has been a hard morning.

My 6 year old boy is so hard to inspire to study. He has homework to do for kindergarten, and cannot get through it withoutt numerous reminders to get on track and focus. I feel frustrated. I feel a failure as a teacher and Mom. I feel I cannot do this and how can I possibly consider homes school when this day has been such a struggle.

It isn't like this everyday. But I hold this up so close and so near that it blocks the light of hope from shining through to my soul.

Yesterday I listened to a great program on Focus on the Family for Moms

I was encouraged and blessed and liked the idea of Bad Mom's Club (listen to the program to know what I am talking about :)

Yet being a Mom is hard. Surviving the store with 3 kids is hard. Doing homework with kids is hard. Homeschool I am sure is hard. But everything is hard to an extent, right? That doesn't mean it isn't worth it.

And so today as I shared with a friend that I was having  hard time and she encouraged me. And as I ran to God time and again, twice with tears running down my face for patience and wisdom; He spoke to me from His word with above passage which I will paraphrase now in my words.

Faith is knowing that what you hope for your kids will actually happen (knowing they will grow up to be godly people, and will be smart, and kind and survive theird education); Faith gives us assurance and hope for things we cannot now see. 

Faith and God together will succeed! 


Monday, October 27, 2014

5 Reasons Silk Art is the Perfect Gift

Christmas is coming fast and as much as we all love that holiday it can be a bit stressful trying to get the perfect gifts for everyone or even a few gifts for those really special people on your list.

I am gonna make your life a whole lot easier by telling you 5 reasons why silk art is the perfect gift this holiday season!

  1. Unique: We all want to find something special for our loved one that they can't or wouldn't just go out and buy themselves, right? A hand painted silk item is 100% original, no one will have one just like it! I specialize in fulfilling custom orders when my customers have a special desire!
  2. Customizable: We all like to have a little touch of personalization on our gifts, something that shows its ours or reminds us of something special, right? Each tie or scarf I paint is able to be personalized not only with names, but also with special dates :) 
  3. Hand-Made: Each of the items I sell is hand painted by ME. I paint these scarves and ties with love while my 3 small kids nap. By purchasing my art you are keeping me painting- literally. The sales that I make help me buy the supplies I need to continue painting as well as are a little source of income for a stay at home Mom. 
  4. LOVE: When your loved ones gets their unique hand painted item they will feel so special. Just imagine Grandpa getting this tie above with all the Kids or Grandkids names on it. It will be his conversation piece and he will be sure to talk about each person whose name is listed on that tie. My customers LOVE their ties! 
  5. Quality: Each item I paint is made with the best quality silk and French Dyes or Silk Paint that I can buy. Your item isn't mass produced or made by a factory but is hand painted, steamed, pressed and followed and wrapped by my own two hands. 
So what are you waiting for?! Order you scarves and ties now, while there is still time for special orders and shipping.

Use the code FREESHIPPING at checkout to save $5.00 or more on your order today!

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

When God answers our prayers

I believe in God, and He answers prayers. Amazing, that One so great in splendor chooses to hear and answer my prayers.

I sometimes pray selfishly, "Lord, please do this for me or us. . ."

I sometimes pray for others, "Lord, be with my friend. . . and . . . "

I sometimes pray just to talk to our Big God, " Father, thank you for who YOU are. . . "

I sometimes ask for things, "Lord, if it's your will please provide and give us a dog . . . "

And the most amazing thing is that God always hears and HE always answers! He may not answer the way I want, just like a loving parent. Or sometimes He may answer the way I ask, in time. . . And sometimes when we get what we prayed for we realize we really didn't want that thing. . . But we (I) were not content with praying for God's will to be done.

I was pondering again on the fact that God is His kindness has recently answered some prayers of mine, which when I got them realized I should have left that decision more in God's hands and not have prayed so hard for it to come to be. Yet God, the Loving Father He is chose to let me learn by experience to trust Him more in the future for decisions.

You may wonder what this is that I prayed for, waited for, got and then regret getting.  . . Well it is our puppy.

For a whole year I looked for a puppy of this certain breed. I prayed of course. I trusted and I still looked and wanted and fretted. In the end God did give us just the kind of puppy I had wanted. But then BANG I realized having a puppy is by no means a story book. Having a puppy in my opinion is far more difficult then having a baby or 3 kids. And now as I look back over the last 4 month I realize that probably God had a reason for not giving me that puppy a whole year. But I wasn't content to leave it at that. Like a stubborn child I kept asking and HE is HIS kindness seemed to say, "Ok. Have your puppy. And learn from it, it won't be easy. . . and you will regret it. But I love you, so I will give it to you."

And so here we learn on and as much as we do enjoy our puppy , she is ALOT of work!

I thank God for answering my prayers and thank HIM that through this I can learn to trust HIM more.

How about you, did you ever pray for something and after God answered you wished He hadn't?

Monday, October 20, 2014

The Paisley Yellow Tell's Its Tale

I have decided this evening as my 4 year old and I ironed my silk scarves and talked of our favorites that each of these creations is as unique as a personality. And each was born of a mood, a story, a feeling. And as the emotions come from my brush, they most be told. And so here goes: 

I am the soft yellow of a daffodil petal. The rich yellow of black eyed susans and with touches of orange. I am as sleek and glossy at the richest of silks. I am light enough to brighten your winter wardrobe and remind you that spring WILL come. I am elegant for work and evenings out. I am fun with my paisley print for a fun day out. I am that little accessory that makes you smile because I am bright and blesses your life because I am so versatile. This is my story., your luxurious paisley scarf. I was painted with love and joy (being the favorite color of my creator)

Friday, October 10, 2014

Autumn Collection- Silk Scarves

I am so excited to share with you my latest set of Autumn colored scarves. They are going into the shop as quick as we can get them photographed and listed and now is the time to grab one while you can :)

My favorite, the colors are perfect for this season and I so love this one that if I didn't have another one I just claimed I'd snatch this one up. It is shiny, feminine and subtle!

Some more great scarves!
This one has a very slight defect and is being offered at a special price because of that :)
Love these colors!

This would make a great gift for an expectant Mother or any new Mommy. 
And this one hasn't been listed yet, so if you want this one then message me. I am wearing one very similar to this this season so LOVE how it goes with everything! I tie two corners together and loop around my neck like an infinity scarf. It is so great to wear around the house (our house is chilly right now) and to wear out on the town or running errands. I wear my scarves ALL the time! 

Thursday, October 9, 2014

It's ok to be Different

Everyday. Everywhere. There is this pressure to fit in. to be like those around you. To think the same. To do the same. To act like everyone. Talk acceptably. . .

But I don't fit in. I never have. Trying to fit;  trying to be like others; trying to understand what is right for me and my family when the world pushes us to be like others is SO stressful.

Right now our kids do kindergarten at home. Which is acceptable here in LV. There is a program at a local kindergarten where they go once a week for a lesson and then are given homework. I also teach them an American Christian Program from Heart of Dakota.

But every week or (it seems even more often) I am asked why my kids don't go to kindergarten. Do they go or some other similar question. The pressure to attend, since that is what most do is so STRONG.

Then there is the question of school. Next year our oldest will be in first grade. Most people assume he will go to school. But since I was home-schooled and some know that they assume I will try to do it (since now it is possible here). 

I like teaching my kids. I enjoy seeing their progress. But it IS stressful. I have too many hobbies. I sell my art online on Etsy. Balancing lessons, and art and running a household is VERY tedious, and chaotic.

I want my kids to be involved. But I also don't want them or me (our family) overwhelmed. They need time to be kids as well. Knowing the balance is an art. This year my oldest also started music school. He is learning violin, and has theory lessons. This is good, but another thing to fill our time.

I don't know what is best for our family concerning next year and homeschool vs. public school. There are moments where I think sending my oldest to school would be so easy, and he probably would like it. But is that what's best for him? Is he ready?Is his character established? I know that I would feel like I wasn't doing the right thing when I imagine sending him next year. I am praying hard to know what will be best for our boy. Each child is different and as parents we must take that and our circumstances into account.

I guess when I think of the prospect of keeping him home next year and doing home-school the thing that scares me the must is the pressure and comments of others. Homeschool is not accepted here. Until recently only sick kids were taught at home by teachers. I fear what people will say. I fear the pressure. I fear being different. I fear standing out.

When you live in another culture and perhaps even in our own we long to fit. But when you are in a different country you really don't want to stand out any more than necessary. But lately I have been realizing yet again it is OK TO BE DIFFERENT!

God has made each of us UNIQUE!

If I could just grasp that and if others would too then the world would be a whole lot friendlier.

Somehow yesterday I decided to watch about the Duggar family- they have 19 kids. I had never watched any of their episodes, I had only heard of them. And I have been so blessed, and encouraged by watching and reading about their family. They are godly, they are different, they are AMAZING! And as I reflected on how they raise their children and live their lives and are so very different and in such a GREAT way I was again reminded.

It IS ok to be different.

And it isn't just ok, it is GOOD to be different!

Wednesday, October 8, 2014

The Power of Words

We have a couples Bible that has both text and great stories that make the truths of the Bible hit close to home with their real life stories.

I have always known my love language was words of affirmation. You know- the person who loves getting notes and needs to hear what they have done was appreciated? I'm that sort of a girl.

But the best story I have ever heard on the power of the spoken word is the illustration used in our Bible. It goes like this: (Couples Devotional Bible pg: 1131)

Years ago graduate students at an Ivy League college conducted an experiment. First they observed undergraduates until they found one of the most unkempt, most socially inept women on campus. 

They they drew up a schedule each would spend a month getting close to the woman. They would "happen" to bump into her Beeton classes. They would show up in line behind her in the dining hall. They would call her for lecture notes or assignment reminders. Moreover, when each was "on duty" he would compliment her insights, her clothes, express delight in her voice, her talents , her clothes. 

The first student performed well. In spite of his misgivings he began to speak to the woman, finding ways to affirm her. By the end of the month he found his task less onerous as the young woman started to respond. She smiled occasionally, combed her hair more often, and paid more attention to how she dressed. 

The second graduate student took the experiment a step further. He asked the undergrad out on an official date and spent the month showering her with gifts and compliments. 

The third month there was a new glow about the young woman, and the third researcher enjoyed her company more than he cared to admit. When the graduate students got together to share their experiences and laugh at the "progress" of the victim, the third student had to force chuckles through self-conscious embarrassment. 

The fourth member of the group never got the chance to lavish attention on the young woman because by then she was engaged to the man assigned to her during the third month. What started as a cruel and belittling pastime for the students turned into a love story. 

This shows despite the evil intent at the start that when a person receives positive attention both the one who gives it and the one who receives it change.  Imagine the place the world could be if we started giving, real, HONEST praise to others and who they and we might become!

Tuesday, October 7, 2014

Chandra Knudsen

So a long time ago I new this little girl with her cute braid, and her big voice! I always loved hearing the Knudsen girls sing and play.

Those little girls grew up and through the years I have always loved seeing where their talents have taken them.

I was tickled pink to hear that Chandra was on TV for an audition and loved getting to see her family (they were always so dear to us) on TV.

All the best Chandra wherever your music takes you. Put Jesus first and let him use you ALWAYS!

Your family will always hold a special place in our hearts!

Monday, October 6, 2014

This Day

With its early morning for tired kids. After a weekend of partying and a late evening for the celebrated girl with a names day. (They celebrate name's days here in Latvia).

When you are trying to get 3 kids fed and out the door and accidentally zip up someones leg in their boot. Ouch. Sorry!

When you feel like you will lose it and are trying so hard to have it all together.

When the weather is just too brisk and chilly and the warmer clothes are still in the attic.

When your kids are whiny because its been that long weekend and they are not at their best for their lesson with their teacher.

When you have stayed up too late and your patience is ebbing and you are trying so hard to be the kind of Mom you want, dream and pray to be.

When you compare yourself, your shop, your paintings to those of all those how have already sold 4-8 things this month and the friend who has 500 sales over the last 2 years when you only have 147 in the last 4 years and you sell the same type of things.

When  you wonder why you compare yourself and try to stop and whisper a prayer asking God to help you. And bless your shop and bless you with sales and even as you sit listing your next item suddenly you sell a item (the first this month). Because God IS GOOD and HE answers the prayers of his children in HIS time and in HIS way.

When your kids are so wild, they are bouncing off the walls and no one wants to concentrate on anything they need to do.

When you finally have a quiet moment to take the dog on a walk and let the wind blow your head-ful of cobwebs away and you have time to think, and train that pesky pup and breathe.

This is my life. This was my day. This little bit of nonsense. This life I don't understand. This sometimes meaningless existence in this BIG world.

And God is in Heaven and here with me, and all are well and at peace in my little world! 

Tuesday, September 30, 2014

What I'm Listening To: - J J Heller

I always use Grooveshark to listen both on the computer and on my telephone. I would highly
recommend it, I have been using it years and LOVE it!

Today I found a new artist, I love her voice, and her lyrics and music.

Presenting J J Heller. Enjoy!

And my favorite song so far

Monday, September 29, 2014

Most Popular + Giveaway

Don't miss the last days of a giveway for my Shop, going on now on this Blog. 

There are a lot of wonderful comments there which made me smile (thanks guys) and by a vote of popularity these are the top favorites!

Plaid Scarf. Blue Scarf. Boho Scarf. Shibori Silk Scarf.  Hand Painted Silk.
Pink Scarf- floral scarf- floral fantasy- Roses. Hand Painted Silk Scarf. Barbie Pink. Feminine Scarf. 11x 60 inches. 11

Friday, September 26, 2014

So, you want to marry a foreigner?

Yesterday my husband and I had the chance to talk on the Christian radio and tell our story how we met and talk a bit about life, love, etc.

Before the program started we were chatting with the hosts about our unusual marriage. I am an American, and my husband is Latvian and we live here, in Latvia. Most people when given the chance would go back to the States. But when I married my husband I knew that I'd be here, forever. I accepted that and most days I am ok with it. But the truth is leaving ones country, culture and family never gets easier.

9 years ago I fell in love with man I call my husband. We are happy, we are blessed. We have 3 kids speaking 2 languages. But the fact is I would not recommend cross-cultural marriages to anyone.


  1. The top reason by far is family. My family was close growing up and the distance between me and them now means my kids will never be close to their aunts and uncles and cousins in the US. That breaks my heart. Holidays are never spent together. There are no family gatherings or birthday parties. SAD. Tickets for 5 are way too expensive for us to see them often.
  2. Marriage is hard with anyone. But when you throw in culture and language it gets even harder. These are things that can be worked through and do help us grow. But they they sure get in the way when it comes to understanding each other as one would like.
  3. Your self identity in a foreign country- whether that be yours or your spouses' will never (maybe it will after many years) be quite as comfortable in a new country as in ones own. I have lived here 9 years. I speak the language fluently. But I am still an outsider in many ways. 
Are you married to a foreigner? What is your story? 

Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Latvian Honey Cake

Since I work in a bakery besides painting,  I bake ALOT of cakes. Were I to count them they would be in the hundreds this year :) But my all time favorite cake right now is this Latvian honey cake. I love that it is sweet, but perfect with coffee and as moist as one could wish! YUMMY. This cake vanished in no more than 10 minutes this evening!

I have borrowed this recipe from the website cetrassezonas and tweaked it some. I hope it will work with your American sour cream or wherever you are from. But as long as you can get your hands on real sour cream you should be fine.

You will need:

Springform pan 10-11 inch. 


1 1/4 c. sugar
3 cups flour
7 T. butter
2 eggs
2 T. honey
1 t. soda.


2 cups sugar
3 cups sour cream
2 T. grated lemon rind
1 t. vanilla extract


1/2 cup chocolate chips
1/4 cup cream


Melt the butter, sugar and eggs. Stirring until the sugar is dissolved. Pour into separate bowl.

Place soda and honey in pot, heat over medium heat, stirring constantly until the mixture is caramelized. It will be foamy and gradually turn a rich brown. Do not burn! This part is always so cool! I didn't know you could do this with honey :)

Add this mixture to the egg mixture and stir well. Stir in flour. The dough should be stiff and you can let it cool and it will become even easier to handle.

Prepare sheets of baking paper by  tracing the size of the pan on the paper. You will need 5 such prepared baking sheets or papers. Divide the dough into 5 equal portions. Flip the paper over and roll out so that the dough is the size of your drawn circle. Use flour as necessary to keep from sticking. It will be thin, apx. 1/8 inch. There is no need to have a perfect circle, you will trim the edges later.

Bake until brown, and crisp. DO NOT  BURN! It bakes quickly.

When the rounds are ready let them cool and then trim them to fit inside your springform pan. Save the trimmings for later. Prepare the filling by stirring it well, until the sugar is dissolved. It will be soupy!

Layer one cake round at a time, then spread apx. 1 cup of the sour cream mixture. Then another round until you have used up all the rounds and all the filling. Pour any remaining filling under the last layer. Do not put filling on top layer if you desire to top with chocolate. Chill overnight. You can also add the chocolate at this point or do it the next day.

The next day if you haven't already topped it with chocolate then melt the chocolate with the cream and then spread over the cake. I topped mine with rough sugar grains here and chilled the chocolate. When it was set I then removed the cake from the pan.

You can put the remaining edges that you cut off in a blender and grind them into crumbs which can then be used to garnish the edges of the cake. This cake is meant for home so the decor is simple, but you can decorate it as you desire!

Slice and enjoy!

So let me know if you make this cake and how it turns out for you!

Monday, September 22, 2014

Where to stay with kids near Palanga, Lithuania. Vienkiemis Hotel Review.

In looking for places to stay for our trip to Lithuania I stumbled upon Vienkiemis. I liked the reviews I saw on and that it was child friendly.So I made a reservation- directly through their site.

We were more than delighted with our stay there, and if you are ever near the area with kids then you MUST go there.

We were there off season, but it looks like the kind of place (by the size and attractiveness) that they are crowded during summer.

I liked the rustic look of the buildings and was delighted by the elegant room we had. (We stayed in one of the apartments  ) I have in fact never stayed in such an elegant looking room/apartment (and I have stayed in ALOT of hotels). I loved the room, and the sitting room next to it where we played chess in the evening on a gorgeous chess set.

The food was yummy, and we had some nice meat filled potato rolls- traditional food. (Though the ones we had down the rode on the corner on the way home were even better). Breakfast was lovely and filling.

But the best thing by far was the collection of kid sized houses- just like a children sized village. There was a windmill, a church, a school, a root cellar, a mill and all manner of other small buildings. Our kids absolutely loved it and went over the whole village the first evening and the next morning. They also have a cute mini-zoo.

If you want a place where kids can chill and play after a drive to the area then this is THE place to stay!

Sunday, September 21, 2014

Lithuania Day 1

 The last days of summer were perfect for a short trip to Lithuanian.

The place we stayed was elegant and had this wonderful sitting room next to our apartment. Where we had a nice game of chess with my husband on the most impressive chess set I had ever seen.

 Yummy Lithuanian food.
 An ideal place for kids with a whole village of kid size buildings.