Friday, February 25, 2011

Friendship and an old green cupboard

I baked a pie for my friend Carol today.  Carol lost one of her dearest friends yesterday morning,
 Valerie Wakeley.  I knew Valerie from both the antiquing world and from her son Sean who is friends with my Step brother Andrew.  But of all the different ways I knew Valerie I remember her most because of her Old Green Cupboard.  You see, a few years back Valerie was kind enough to allow us to tie our boat up to her dock for the summer.  We could come and go as we pleased and enjoy her dock for swimming too.  I would always look up at her closed-in porch while walking down to the water to admire her decor.  She had so many antique treasures!  I loved her old 50's Bounce yard chairs with just the right amount of patina.  She had neat old ladders and tables and wash basins filled with flowers.  My kind of decorating!  But on the Porch was a giant old green cupboard. The kind of cupboard that told a story.  It was big and had it's paint chipping away.  A favorite piece of hers as well.  She said she had found it years ago but never knew what to do with it so she just stored it on the porch until something right came along.  That was in 2006.  I wonder if she ever found the "something right"  I pictured her filling it with quilts in a living room, or jams in the kitchen when she had moved from the lake house.  I saw her every once in awhile at the Farmers' Market and different Estates sales around town.  We would talk small talk, I was always in a hurry for something so it was just the basic conversation and one of us was on our way.  I would think to myself every time "I wonder if she ever found a purpose for her old green cupboard". 
Valerie's Lake House.
I thought that very thing today as I was baking The Pie.  How I wish I would have taken the time during one of my many opportunities to ask Valerie, not just about the cupboard...but about the life around it... around her.  She was after all a friend, one who found beauty in old things like I do, one who treasured a piece of junk someone else casted aside.  A kindred spirit.  I wish I had embraced that more.  So as I delivered the pie to Carols' I decided then and there to learn from this.  To inquire more, to cultivate friendships when they come my way.  To cherish those who come into my life.  Like an old cupboard that needs valued and do those we love.  And I hugged My friend tight...

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Valentine's Day

Valentine's Day at Northside Elementary was always something that took a good two weeks in preparation.  I picked out my cardboard box of themed cards from the local Sprouse Ritz.  I would choose carefully the cards for each student in my class, avoiding giving the cute boys cards that said "too much".  I would dot all "i"s with hearts.  Then I would fill each Valentine with 3 candy conversation hearts; pink for the girls and also, being careful not to put "kiss me" or "you're cute" in the boys that I may have had a secret crush on.  I would give extra hearts to my best friend and the Teacher.  We would all make mailboxes for our desks out of construction paper in different shades of red and pink, shaped like a heart and taped to the edge.  An hour before class was out we would have a party.  Everyone would hand out their Valentines, We would have a treat such as cupcakes the teacher or a parent had made.  It was tradition to play-heads up seven-up.  After School I would read through my cards again and again, decoding any that were from said boys.  I would display them in my room for the rest of February.  A few I still have in my jewelry box.

Today I still love it just as much.  I like to make cards now, but I choose carefully for those I love the cards that are right for them.  I remember the first Valentine's after Nathan and I were married, I was so excited to buy a card for Nathan with the word "Husband", ever since I make it a point to give him one that says that.  My Mom and grandma had a tradition to give each other and me a fold-out Valentine.  They are hard to find but still out there, I have had to make mom's the past few years.  My Father always gave each of us girls a rose; Shelly a pink, Errin a red and I would get a Yellow one.  to this day Nathan gives me red and Yellow roses.
And I still proudly display my cards.  Small tokens of love, pure and simple love.  What a great thing to celebrate!  Happy St. Valentine's Day!  With LOVE, Jennifer

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

A Valentine Tea and Glitter Party!

My Banner in My Kitchen

We were told we could tear up a wedding dress...too much fun!
I love that this punch bowl lights up!

Yummy Food!
The Girls of Funky Junk!

photo courtesy Erin Hudson Photography
Creating with some Very Talented Women!

photo courtesy Erin Hudson Photography
My jewelry Box filled with inspirational treasure.

photo courtesy Erin Hudson Photography

photo courtesy Erin Hudson Photography

Forget me not Nancy, one of my favorite peeps!
 A wonderful Day was spent In Addy Washington on Saturday!  I signed up to do the Valentine Glitter Tea and Workshop.  At the home of the very talented Elaine Tolson.  The workshop was presented by Holly and Becky of All That Glitter.  And boy was there glitter!!!  We made banners out of whatever objects our hearts desired.  Some ladies chose to do other words, but since it is almost St. Valentine's Day I chose to stay with that theme. 
We had a wonderful lunch that was not only beautiful, but a treat for the Pallet as well!  There was laughter, creativity, stories and yes LOTS of Sparkle!  The perfect day, this by the way was the first time I have left Glenn for an entire day...11 hours to be exact!  I couldn't have asked for a better situation for this big step!  I am so happy with my Banner and the time spent with friends!  A little R&R before life gets really busy!  thank you everyone who attended for the wonderful day!  Love, Jennifer