Lisa’s Show!

If you have read my blog for any length of time, you know how much I love Lisa Leonard.

On the (in)courage beach retreat last month, I got to spend some one on one time with her and I decided I loved her even more. She gave me some brilliant insights into some life stuff I’m dealing with, and her calm, balanced approach to life helped me breathe deeper. I think you’ll see what I mean when you watch this video.

A production company has approached their family about doing a reality show, and this is the trailer for it. As we watched, Todd said, “Okay. I totally get why you love her so much…she is amazing. They all are…”

Seriously, this show will be such a blessing, and I think there’s a message in it for all of us.

Treat yourself to a few minutes with Lisa and the Leonard family…and prepare to fall in love with the whole bunch :)

xoxo
A

Help Me Out!!! (& A Giveaway!)

Okay, friends.

You ready for some fun?

I talked to Lisa Leonard a few weeks ago about creating a necklace that would have some saying on it that was related to my new book. I’ve thought about it a bunch since then and I can’t decide what I think. So, I figured I would ask all of you!!!

I was thinking “Fear Not,” or “Be not afraid” or something like that, but a few people have suggested different things and I am wondering if you all could tell me what your favorite saying on a necklace would be. You don’t have to pick one of those…I would LOVE to hear your original ideas. It can be a few words from my book, from a favorite quote you have always loved, from Scripture, or anywhere else in your brain.

And because I would love to offer some initiative to leave a comment, I will be giving away FIVE copies of my new book (randomly chosen from the comments section) and a special gift to the person who comes up with the one we use.

So, get cracking!!! And feel free to leave as many as you want…we can use all the ideas you have! I can’t wait!!!!!

Thanks!!!

{A}

Marked By Love

***Link is working now! Sorry about that…GO ENTER TO WIN!!!***

A few weeks ago I alluded to something I was really excited about and today I get to share it with you all:)

After I lost Audrey, I got so many emails from people who had either lost a child or had a friend who had and they were looking for something special to honor the child. I found a few pieces that I thought were really beautiful but when I was working on the book and making suggestions about these kinds of things, I immediately thought of Lisa Leonard. I have talked about her several times here and the fact that my computer pretty much crashes whenever I do one of her giveaways tells me that you all love her work as much as I do. I am honored beyond words to introduce you to her newest necklace, called “Marked By Love: Audrey’s necklace.”

Isn’t it beautiful? I have several of her necklaces but this one is much heavier. When she created it she remembered the comment I have made several times about Audrey having weight in this world. She also told me that when you wear it, it warms because of the way it’s made and I found the same. I periodically just lift it away from my skin and feel the heat, a sweet reminder of her life.

All of us who have lost a child are aware that we have been marked by love. Only Lisa could put her heart and soul into such a project and create a piece of art that is a beautiful, tangible way to remember our children. I have attached two of her little pearl/beads to mine-they originally came on her “By Grace Alone” necklace and they make this little tinkling noise when I move around. I use it as a reminder to pray, and the Lord uses it at the best times. I just hear it and immediately I think, “by grace alone, by grace alone…” With this one, I think about Audrey and remind myself to pray for others who have walked the same road.

She has generously agreed to give away 2 of these beauties, customized with whatever you would like on the back. Please make your way over to her blog and enter to win one…

Thank you, Lisa. I am so blessed to have this opportunity and I am praying that many, many people treasure it as much as I do…

Love to all {and go enter!}
Ang

Well Hello, Precious…

**Just for clarification, you aren’t entered in the contest if you leave a comment here!!! You have to hop over to my giveaway blog….didn’t want anyone to miss a chance :) )**

Two words.

Lisa. Leonard.

I have always been a huge fan of her (not just her jewelry…she is an amazing, gifted woman in many ways) and I never pass up an opportunity to share her with you all.

Have you seen the new heartstrings necklace?

I know. It’s absurdly cute.

AND, you can win one (actually, I’m giving away THREE, so you’ll have more chances!!!)

I will also have a really special announcement in the coming weeks that has been in the works for awhile…hmm….you’ll never, ever guess if Lisa has created something special that I might want to share here…let’s just say it is a blessing and a treasure to me and I hope it will be to you all as well.

In the meantime, CLICK HERE to enter by noon on 2/16/10, and if you don’t win but want to get something anyway, enter “markedbylove” as your discount code and you’ll get 15% off your order until the 26th!!!

Why “markedbylove?” Because Lisa and I are up to something. As soon as it’s ready, I’ll share it here :)

Much love to you all,
Ang

AMAZING GIVEAWAY!!

Let me put this bluntly.
Lisa Leonard is the most talented jewelry creator on the planet.
Dramatic? Quite possibly.
True? Absolutely.
Just take a gander, would you?






She was kind enough to send me a necklace when I was pregnant with Audrey, and it had all of the girl’s initials on it. It meant the world to me, and I have become one of her biggest fans. You may have seen her styles in People magazine (and I suppose I would have as well, if I read those types of things…ahem) and other magazines as well (InStyle weddings, Glamour, Pregnancy, Cookie, Wondertime…are you getting the idea that she’s kind of good at what she does???)

While most of the world knows her as a jewelry genius, I really came to respect her as a mother, and you will too. She has a beautiful, God-written story, and to be a spectator to it is a gift in itself. I am proud to be on the (in)courage team with her, and to support her incredible craft. If you want to read more about her and her amazing family (and SPECTACULAR photography skills), click HERE to go to her blog.
SO, Lisa has graciously agreed to let me give away (ARE YOU READY FOR THIS???)
3 $50 gift cards to her website!!!!

And all you have to do to enter is leave a comment on this post. The winners will be chosen at 6 p.m. tomorrow (9/8/09).

Go on!!! Enter now!!!
And many thanks and blessings to you, Lisa…

Ang

Beautiful.Simple.Creative.Inspiring.

Updated to say that you all are listing AMAZING ideas, books, etc…I can’t wait to visit these cool blogs and track down these songs!!!! Seriously, if you have a couple minutes, scroll through and make some notes! Blessings…
(original post follows)

This is kind of a weird post because I don’t usually write when I don’t have something specific to say, but I want to today.  We have had a hard few days, and I would love to write more about it later, when the kiddos are in bed. I am going to teach and head to the park in a bit…they are really in need of a “full-time mommy” after being at yet another funeral this week.  For those of you who don’t follow me on twitter, my dear aunt Fran passed away early Sunday morning and we have been in Georgia since Tuesday.  I have so many thoughts that I am trying to process about the heaviness of life right now…

When I feel like I am getting discouraged, I seek beauty and peace through scripture and prayer, and it may sound silly to some of you (and that’s okay! please keep reading :) ), but it really does help.  I may be quiet for a few days because I sense that the Lord is asking me to pull back from the blog and really be focused on the kids. I don’t really spend that much time on here, but I can just sense that they are a little off and I need to be more deliberate with my time.  We have been having some intense discussions about death and hurt and I feel like they are in a place of seeking.  It is really hard to watch them go through the process.
A precious friend of mine (thank you, Hollie!) made dresses for the girls, and as I dressed them for the funeral, I told them that my friend Hollie had made them for them, and I showed them the way the piping went along the collars and the seams, and told them how hard it was to sew like that and how grateful we should be to have these dresses. They are, by far, the most exquisite dresses they have ever had, and her talent is incredible. Ellie looked at me and said, “Is she alive, still, mommy?”  I told her yes, Ms. Hollie is alive and she said, “Oh good. I am so glad.”
Ouch.
The fact that they think to ask questions like that has really affected me and challenged me to make sure that I am responding fully to what they are walking through. Please pray for that, and that they will be able to see the Lord in all of this, and that death will not permeate their thinking. We try, and I think we are successful for the most part, but if you are a mommy who has walked through this, will you email me any suggestions you have on the subject? I would love to hear from you…I know there are a community of us who are trying to raise our children to face difficult situations with the Lord as our strength.
When I have a bit more time, I am going to post a bit about Aunt Fran and I am going to post a picture of the beautiful quilt she made for Audrey. Several of you tweeted me and suggested that, and I think it is a great idea.
For now (and I know this is random), I was wondering if you all would play along with me.
I realized last night as I skimmed through some of my favorite blogs that I am drawn to things that are beautiful in their simplicity, and just through images and words, I find great peace. One of those blogs is Lisa Leonard’s, a woman who has a beautiful heart, story, and incredible gift. She was kind enough to send me a necklace with my daughter’s initials on them after Audrey passed away. I didn’t know about her then, but I just love reading her blog because it is so pure and beautiful…if you need something inspiring, please click on over. It is so beautiful…to see her store of jewelry, just click on Lisa’s Store in the top right corner.
Another blog I love to read is the NieNie Dialogues, which tells the story of a sweet woman and her husband-they were involved in a private plane crash last year that took the life of the pilot, and while her husband Christian escaped with about 30% of his body burned, she had much more serious burns (85% I think?) and is still walking a very, very difficult road in her recovery. She has the most amazing outlook, and I am so drawn to her irrepressible hope. She is also insanely creative and infectious in her approach to love and life. Our theological backgrounds and beliefs are very different, but she is a true inspiration and I love the way she loves her family and her role as a mommy. Please join me in praying for her…she has never posted images of herself after her plane crash, and recently put the first one up.  You can see her eyes and the marks that this horrific crash has had on her, but the beauty is the same…
Another one I love is Amanda Soule’s. She inspires me in creativity and I could spend hours looking at her creative projects and ideas. I have her book, and if you are a mommy (or daddy!) who is looking for a great book of projects to do with your kids, I would highly recommend it. Mine is tattered and covered in post-it notes. I wish I had HALF of her creativity!!!! Love it. She has another book coming out soon, and you can be sure I will be talking about it :)
I could list many, many more, but today these come to mind and I wanted to share them with you in the event that you don’t know them…in the event that you need a happy place to drift off to for a bit, here are some tidbits :)
Random, right. I know. I warned you.
But I do hope you enjoy :) And as a sidebar, none of these people know that I am linking to them, and I don’t think Stephanie knows I exist :)
So, there’s a bit of beauty for the day.
(Switching gears)
I am going to write a post on homeschooling because a bunch of people have asked me questions about it. Keep in mind that I have only done it for one year so I am a total novice, but I would love to share my experiences with you all.  If you have any specific questions for me, could you put them in the comments section of this post or email me so I can try to address them? I also have some online and IRL friends that are way ahead of me in the process and I would love to have them chime in with their knowledge as well if you have questions about being “further down the road.”
So, in summary, today I am in processing mode and looking for inspiration and beauty in life. It comes in the form of music, art, books, nature, all of that. SO, this isn’t a contest, but I would love for you all to tell me where you go to seek solace from this crazy world. A song? A favorite place you go? A fun movie? A book you read and reread? A blog that inspires you? (And don’t any of you turkeys list mine! I am bored with myself :) ) Anything!!!
Make sure and read through the comments, because people say the coolest things. That’s my FAVORITE part of having a blog. I absolutely love what you all wrote when I asked about being “Her, here.”  I am printing them out for myself and have already used several!!! I have the coolest readers on the planet.
I love our friendship…
OK, off to teach. It may be an “on-the-lawn” day…the weather is gorgeous. I’ll stop back later tonight to read your thoughts.
Love to all of you, friends.
Angie