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Love You, Matt

Hi Friends,

Today is December the Twelfth. It is also the 16th anniversary of what we call my brother Matt’s homegoing. Tired of fighting cancer, he was glad to go Home. He even had a couple of dry-runs when he thought he was dying and then strangely felt better. SO not like Hallmark movie. I am glad for these dry runs, though, because as it turned out, he went peacefully in his sleep.

It is funny, you store things in the fibers of your being, in your subconscious, in your body and on the back-burner of your spirit.

This year it started with this little live pine tree I bought because I am cheapskate and would rather pay $20.00 for something that might survive, than $40.00 for something that will end up on my curb. So there was that. Then you can imagine me wrangling lights around this unruly little tree. And then my conscious mind and heart realized two things: One, this little tree was a Norfolk Island Pine, the same type of tree a friend gave my family after my brother died. The second realization I had was that the Handel’s Messiah CD was playing at exactly this spot:

I know that my Redeemer liveth,
and that He shall stand at the latter day upon the earth.

And tho’ worms destroy this body,
yet in my flesh shall I see God.

I know that my Redeemer liveth:
For now is Christ risen from the dead,
the first fruits of them that sleep.

That beginning part is straight out of the book of Job, baby. And if you don’t know Job, he lost everything, and was still able make this astounding declaration.

I think God knew I needed a little something right then. They say he’s not the God of the dead, but of the living. And I think he wanted to remind me that Matt is alive and well, just not HERE.

Miss you terribly Matt. I can’t promise how long I’ll keep this pine alive, but thank you God for the beautiful reminder, smack where I needed it: in every day life.

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Santa's Workshop....

ImageHeh.

For some reason, today I am stressed out.  It could be the coffee with caffeine, which never sits well.  It could be drama.  Thoughts of good news and great tidings seem to soothe my soul.  I thought this image appropriate for a Christian believer would be appropriate for a few reasons today:

1. The mentioned soothing effect

2. These feet are a portrait of my friend Veronica’s feet.  She’s the only one in our group of four old college roommates whose birthday is not in April, so she sometimes gets the birthday shaft.  Veronica, I’m sending you the original piece.  Do you remember it?  It has colors.  Do you remember them?

3.  It is All Saints Day.  I like the idea that I can be a saint while still being a sinner.  I find it awe inspiring, somewhat offensive to my perfectionist nature, and massively encouraging.

 

How beautiful on the mountains are the feet of those who bring good news, who proclaim peace, who bring good tidings, who proclaim salvation, who say to Zion, “Your God reigns!”

Isaiah 52:7

 

 

Hi,

I’ve been meaning to post this final painting.  I met up with the family to hand deliver this, and recognized the subject (with her mother) because I’d spent so many hours staring at her face!  You see, I interact with many customers before I meet them.  Someone will see my work in a public place like Some Bagels in Richland.  They grab my card or, write down hannahmcdonald.com and then email me a photo at hannah@hannahmcdonald.com. It’s fun to do the local hand-off!  I mail paintings, too.

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We have been married for eight years.  I like the number eight.  It is earthy, homey, accessible.  Those are my feelings, anyway.

Speaking of numbers, we were 22 and 23, but I still like the following song, by Andrew Peterson. Go and buy it for your i-whatever.  It’s called Dancing in the Minefields, which is certainly marriage these days.  Happy Eighth Anniversary, dear.  I love you fiercely.

 

Dancing in the Minefields

Well I was 19 you were 21 

The year we got engaged 
And everyone said we were much to young 
But we did it anyway 
We got the rings for 40 each from a pawnshop down the road 
We said our vows and took the leap now 15 years ago 

Chorus: 
And we went dancing in the minefields 
We went sailing in the storms 
And it was harder than we dreamed 
But I believe that’s what the promise is for 

Well I do are the two most famous last words 
The beginning of the end 
But to lose your life for another I’ve heard is a good place to begin 
Cause the only way to find your life is to lay your own life down 
And I believe it’s an easy price for the life that we have found 

Chorus: 
And we’re dancing in the minefields 
We’re sailing in the storms 
And this is harder than we dreamed 
But I believe that’s what the promise is for 
That’s what the promise is for 

Bridge: 
So when I lose my way, find me 
When I loose love’s chains, bind me 
At the end of all my faith 
to the end of all my days 
when I forget my name, remind me 

Cause we bear the light of the son of man 
So there’s nothing left to fear 
So I’ll walk with you in the shadow lands 
Till the shadows disappear 
Cause he promised not to leave us 
And his promises are true 
So in the face of all this chaos baby 
I can dance with you 

Chorus: 
So lets go dancing in the minefields 
Lets go sailing in the storms 
Oh lets go dancing in the minefields 
And kicking down the doors 
Oh lets go dancing in the minefields 
And sailing in the storms 
Oh this is harder than we dreamed 
But I believe that’s what the promise is for 
That’s what the promise is for

 

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use only with permission, please

These images are from a quirky British movie called Wild Target.  We thought it would be a B movie  but we loved it!

                                        She’s Smart

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This little oil-painted lass is by Emily Winfield Martin, author of  Inside a black Apple blog,  and a  book I have called the Black Apple Paper Doll primer that I like quite a lot.  Emily is a Pacific Northwest artist, and has been a guest on Martha Stewart.  She has a very distinctive whimsical style as you can see by perusing her Etsy shop or BuyOlympia. FUN!!  Another fun read is her auxiliary blog cataloging her vintage finds, Some Girls Wander By Mistake.

I just love unexpected roses, don’t you?

Also, go to Etsy and type in ‘art deco’ for great artwork.  Fun!

J Crew. Deco Necklace here

Deco Bow Tie Cuff here

 

 

 

Lulu Frost for J. Crew Thin Deco Bangle available in yellow, green, ivory and mustard here

Lulu Frost for J. Crew Turquoise stone bangle here

Deco Bow Bangle here

Deco Cabochon ring here

LuluFrost for J. Crew crystal duette pendant necklace here

Lulu Frost for J. Crew crystal and resin earrings here

Lulu Frost for J. Crew Resin and Crystal Applique earrings here

Pearl strand locket here


Pluma Mesh bracelet here

Lulu Frost for J. Crew bohemian lattice bracelet here


Deco Brooch necklace here

I was going to get some of these West Elm planters and alternate them on the porch with my white painted stumps.  No longer available, my bum!  (er).   In other bummer news, I did NOT win the West Elm+Lonny makeover room makeover that I entered.  I am choosing to take that as compliment.  HOWEVER, I am thinking about entering the NEW CONTEST: the $15,000 West Elm Makeover contest.  Oh please pleeeeze pick me!

So, Costco has these.  Just sayin.’  

My husband shared this article with me, very insightful, I thought:

 Liking is for Cowards. Go For What Hurts.  By the way, the self-indulgent photos-of-us posts are in honor of our anniversary, in case you didn’t pick that up.  It won’t happen every day, promise.

These trees are blooming in front of my house, and as far as I’m concerned, they can take their time.  This is the best show I can think of, and it’s happening right in front of my house!