Sunday, March 23, 2014

My heart... and a watercolor placecard DIY

Okay guys.  I read all your words, your emails, your comments.  I honestly didn't write my last post to get anyone to reassure me, but somehow so many of you decided to do that anyway... I can't even tell you what it did for my heart.

I was on the phone with a close friend last week trying to process this place I find myself, all out.  Life, blogging, relationships, big life questions.  As we talked she pressed me. She didn't accept the, "Oh let's not talk about it, it's depressing" comment that I tossed her way.  She said, "No.  Tell me.  I'm listening so start from the top."   I finally shared things with her that I've not been comfortable sharing with anyone but Adrain for ages, and it suddenly occurred to me that I had been feeling invisible.  I won't go into it too much, but I'd been feeling invisible in life as a mom as I couldn't seem to break through a child's heart on a certain topic and it's wrapping me up in worry.  Invisible as a wife, as my man and I were approaching some specific things in different ways, invisible in most of my friendships because I've been going through this dark pit-like place for so long that I've unintentionally isolated myself from them because I hate being that burden-type friend, invisible in other areas that I won't dive into but on the whole, I've just been in this weird place where I wondered if anyone really saw me anymore or cared what I thought, did, said, etc.  (Aka- pitty party.)

My goodness.  I want to go back and delete all of that.  But I won't because I have to be raw and real right now as I process things.  It's what I've always given you anyway.  You're obviously here and reading because you can handle it, and I love you so much for that, you can never know.  Besides, we don't really get anywhere by pretending we're okay when we're not, right?  I'm not okay.  My heart is heavy.  It won't always be, but it is right now.  

The point is this.  It's so easy to say that life is messy. But just saying the words, "life is messy" is still such a tidy little phrase isn't it?  It doesn't begin to shed light on the way the "messy" actually feels. And when life actually gets good and messy on you, you can't believe how much it hurts, and how much it drains you and how non-tidy the living of it actually is!  It touches things you didn't plan on it touching and it's messyness spreads and infects things. You reel from the shock of it. You grasp anything that seems like it might be stable as the world spins.  In the end you're just sucked into it and there is only one hope.  God, and His promise of rescue.  

You reached out to me, and I guess I needed that so I thank you, though the words pale in comparison to what is in my heart right now.  You are being my in-the-flesh lifeline.  So many of you shared bits of your own messy stories with me and shared how God had used this space at one time or another to encourage you on your journey.  I don't claim any credit but I'm grateful that when I'm in a messy place, God still speaks freely and it touches us all in the many places of messy life we all find ourselves.   We're in this together, and we'll come out of it together.

The Rescuer is real and the Rescue is coming. 

 "He lifted me out of the pit of despair, out of the mud and the mire. He set my feet on solid ground and steadied me as I walked along."
Psalm 40:2
 That said, I've got the cutest idea to share today, and I'd like to end on that note. Ava and I are working like mad to plan cute table settings and party decorations for all of our upcoming events. (And boy do we have a lot of upcoming events.)  I am roping her in as my right-hand helper and I'm learning something about motherhood that I might have forgotten on more than one occasion.  

Letting go of doing it all myself and making anything look "perfect" makes everything so much more fun.
This fun project is for simple, stamped, watercolor place card tags.  I can't wait to use them in a few weeks at our Seder dinner/Easter! 
 We began by slicing up some watercolor paper in the size we wanted.  (She had the giggles when I was shooting this photo.)
 Then we swiped each center with water.  Next, we chose colors in the blue and green ranges and smeared it however we wanted it to look on the pre-wetted cards. 


They didn't take long to dry, but as soon as they were, we started stamping out the names of our family members with black ink.  
 They are wonky, and imperfect and at first Ava was a bit tentative about making mistakes.  Then I said, "Hey these are just for fun, and they don't have to be perfect, just look at mommy's!"  (Mine looked awful.) She laughed and then we just had fun making them all unique. 

 By the end of this project, we were covered in watercolor paints and ink splotches as we shared little letter stamps, but we'd had so much fun doing this together!  I love having a helper.  And I love the sweet time we get to spend crafting together, making memories.
To be honest, I don't think you can really mess this up and those are the best kind of projects in my opinion.  Just put the color on anyway you like, and stamp it however it comes out! The imperfections make them better.   
Can't wait to show you how we plan to use these!  



43 comments:

  1. Sasha -- <3. Plain and simple.

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  2. Sasha, I love that you share from your heart. So many of your posts have really hit home with me. I too feel invisible sometimes and it always seems to be just when I think things are starting to turn around that I find myself the only one with no one to talk to at church or in small group. Do I really fit in? Part of that is just me. I tend to be a bit shy but that aside, it still hurts and gets to be frustrating when it happens over and over again. Please keep sharing from your heart because it really speaks to my heart. There is something comforting in knowing I am not the only one. Someone out there shares my struggles. Now I am gonna go break out the watercolors and create something. :)
    Juli

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    1. It's so nice to know you're not alone in the way you're feeling isn't it? My goal isn't to let my feelings rule me when I'm in that place... so much easier to say that than actually do it!

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  3. First of all, I'm glad you have at least one girlfriend you are able to let in! Being the burdened friend is no fun, but we're all there at one point. Letting our friends be there for us will also let them know we don't have it together and can be there for them too! :) Right?!?!

    As for this project, it does look FUN! I love the cards and you will both cherish the memories.

    I wish we were neighbors!

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  4. I have been reading your blog since I very first started blogging in 2007! It was one of the very first blogs that I became attached to and still love. I always love coming to see your heart on the page, you are inspiring to me as a mama and Christian woman! Thank you for ALWAYS being so real with us!

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    1. Thank YOU for that. I am telling you, it's words like this that are lifting me up right now. It's scary being REAL sometimes.. you guys make me feel safe sharing it though and I am so blessed by that.

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  5. I love that you share your heart. Thank you fir being so open and honest- i wish i knew you in real life. So many things you write about resonate with me. Keep on!

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    1. Isn't it nice that we can all relate? I think that's what makes life bearable sometimes. Just knowing we all get it.

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  6. You are seen. You are heard. You are unforgettable😘

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  7. Your last post, and especially this one, brought tears to my eyes. I, too, have been feeling invisible for some time now. But more so over the past few months...I just went through several of the most difficult months of my entire life, and my two best friends of many years were not there for me which broke my heart. My family wasn't, either (with the exception of my husband). I am the kind of person who always tries to have a positive outlook on things...and from the outside, I look like I have it together for the most part. I am always worried about and taking care of everyone else. Yet, even with the people who love, me, I rarely have that care reciprocated. (Does that make sense?) I just recently told my husband that just because I am strong on the outside, doesn't mean I'm not vulnerable and needing of love, care and tenderness just like everyone else. We all do. And being a mom, well...it's the best job in the world but as my kids get older I'm definitely feeling invisible to them and it is breaking my heart. I can't believe I am sharing so much with someone I haven't met...but in a way I feel like I know you a little through your blog. I am thankful that you shared your heart with your friend, and even more thankful that she listened. Friends who love and support us through the "messy" stuff of life are true blessing...our guardian angels. I know you are struggling with your blogging, and I truly hope you keep at it...but you have to do what is right for YOU. Thank you for sharing the deep and sometimes painful places in your heart. I wish we were neighbors, too! Would love to have you over for coffee and crafting :) All the best to you, Sasha. P.S. If you decide to stop blogging...I think you should write a book :)

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    1. You know, I totally get what you're saying. I think we all have relationships that can feel like that. I just read something in my devo today that talked about how you can't bless others unless you pour yourself out first in brokenness. If I'd responded to your comment last week I'd probably be responding differently, but after reading that, it made me think about the messy relationships I'm in where I feel similar to you. I'm still processing this thought but I do think that maybe I'm being called to look at them as an opportunity to bless others by going through whatever is breaking me in order to bless them. Kind of like sacrifice doesn't mean much if it doesn't cost you anything... that sort of concept. Does that make sense? Still thinking on that one...

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    2. I had to read your reply a couple of times to let it sink in...yes, it makes sense. I'm a bit embarrassed that I 'unloaded' in your comments section...but I'm glad I did. I appreciate you taking the time to reply, and guess what -- you're a blessing to me, by sharing your devotional, and helping me think about this in a different way. I truly appreciate it. Thank you, Sasha. <3

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    3. I love that you unloaded girl!! I'm still chewing on this myself and not sure I've got a handle on what God is saying to met yet but I love being able to kind of process it out loud with someone else. ;)

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  8. Hey sweet thing. I love how you share your heart here. Even in the messy times. I know I'd miss that even though I get the real you on the phone;) And your constant little creative projects are just too sweet. I think you should write a book. A beautiful life with crazy tutorials type thing. I'd be first in line:-)

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  9. these are perfect. the messiness is perfect too. you speak your heart and I love that about you.

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  10. there is a priceless treasure called a friend who has empathy & the desire to listen & tell you YOU ARE NOT ALONE. youre important to me. i see you. you are loved. and the bravery that is you when you share, whether in a blog or on the phone. we can handle it & i dare say that SOOOOOOOOOOOOOO many of us can relate to you!! i pray your day today is wrapped with blessing and joy. thank you for sharing.
    and
    i love love love the watercolor placecards you & ava created. oh my they are so sweet!

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    1. Thank you sweet Paige. I love your heart. You inspire me so much!!

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  11. I enjoy your posts sooooo much. Thanks for sharing your inspirations with us all!

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    1. Thank YOU!! I appreciate the sweet feedback.

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  12. Looks like your helper is growing into being a fine young lady. Isaiah 40:26 says he calls each star by name and not one of them is missing..if the stars have a name then none of us are invisible, we are all His shining stars!

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    1. That visual picture made me sigh. What a sweet reminder... thank you Jeannie.

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  13. Your authenticity is what makes you so beautiful! Thank you for being real. And for always having a life-giving word to share, even in the middle of your struggle. Bless you!! And those place cards? Love them.

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    1. Thanks Ruby! I think I should always keep quiet until the "mess" is cleared up or I'm not in the struggle but then I figure it wouldn't be as raw and real if I did that... so I appreciated your comment of encouragement. Thank you so much.

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  14. You truly have a way with your words and expressing your Faith that speaks to my heart, Sasha. You are a treasure.
    (Love the place-cards and the gift you are giving your daughter by not expecting perfection is priceless)

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  15. I've missed a few posts…as I read this one, I was so grateful for the friend who let you spill your heart on the phone.
    I've been praying that you would be free to be you in all your friendships…even if that means you have to be honest every single day about the messy parts of life. ESPECIALLY the messy parts of life.

    been praying for friends that not only can handle your messy but who feel HONORED to get to be the ones to handle it. :)

    you're a treasure.

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  16. Sasha, I love that you are always so honest about your life, while not being an over-sharer (I have a tentency to be one ;-) ) You are such an encouragement to me.

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  17. Sometimes I feel there is a contradiction present in your expression - your words are of difficulty and pain, the 'messiness' of life yet your images tell a very different story. They are always of smiling faces, a perfect home. They are almost two separate lives. Perhaps this is a depiction of strength, that despite the struggles you are able to maintain a happy home. Perhaps it is your way of trying to achieve balance. Maybe it's a way to keep the really hard stuff personal. It is in no way received as insincerity, it just makes it harder to connect to your struggle.

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    1. I totally get what you're saying... I hate to think there are others that feel this way but I am sure you're not alone... not everyone relates to everyone and how they present things and I get that. I appreciate the constructive criticism/observation and I think you're right- I do it that way for all of the reasons you mentioned to be honest. It's what works for me for balance, drawing from my inner strength in God, keeping the really hard stuff private and all that. I will say that my home isn't perfect nor are we always smiling but I seldom photograph that because who wants to come see that time after time? My words are often what's on my heart and the photos are often what's happening on the side if that makes sense. I'll probably keep doing it this way since it's kind of my style, but again I so appreciate you being brave enough to tell me how it makes you feel and I also appreciate the kind way you phrased it. Trust me that means a lot!! I do hope you'll continue to visit!

      Blessings,
      Sasha

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