Yesterday, I had to wake up early (okay so not SUPER early.. but for summer and for staying up late the night before.. it was early to me).. early enough that my entire house was still asleep and the sun was just starting to come up. I had to get up so I could officially "launch" the start of the 3 Hearts workshop.. which started again yesterday! (and some of you have asked if you can still sign up and join.. and the answer is yes ! love to have you! :))..
anyhow.. We had been gone all weekend camping, and so my son had put themail on my desk from while we were gone. I hadn't been in my office since we left.. and when I came down to launch the workshop, I saw a letter from Stampington & Company sitting on my keyboard and underneath it...what looked like a packaged magazine... my heart skipped a beat!
A few months ago.. I got an email from Jennifer, the editor at Artful Blogging magazine, asking if they could feature my blog in their upcoming issue. Um.. seriously? I about dropped my phone (i was talking to my husband).. and I started to squeal! My husband was trying to figure out what was wrong.. because when I get excited about something, apparantly I scream like something is wrong.. but really I am just so excited I can't talk and it comes out more of a "I'm scared".. not "I'm excited" kind of scream. Anyhow.. I couldn't even talk. I actually started to cry.. seriously.. really? seriously? YES!! A dream come true. Of course when I tried to explain to my husband about the magazine (which I love and have a subscription too).. and how they were asking me to be in it.. and how HUGE this was for me.. what an honor.. what a blessing and truly humbling.. how it was one of those "leaps" on my list.. he got it and got super excited for me as well. :)
anyhow, of course I responded back.. I would LOVE to be included.. what a huge honor.. I think I actually rambled on.. and on.. much like I am doing now.. telling her what a fan of the magazine I was, how humbled I was to be included and that heck yes, I would love the opportunity. That was months ago and all of my material and my article was turned in months ago as well.. I kept thinking in the back of my mind that maybe the issue would be coming out soon.. but for some reason I had it in my head that it was in September.. so I was not expecting this wonderful little surprise on my desk when I woke up yesterday morning..
As I opened the magazine..(LOVE that it is red. so me.. so my favorite color in the whole world). I was so excited to see that they had actually featured a piece of my art on the cover as well! Totally not expected either! I just had to share it with someone! My entire house was sleeping.. and so I ran upstairs to show my husband.. who of course was SUPER excited too! lol (and I mean that in a totally sarcastic way, as I don't think I even got him to wake up.. we had stayed up WAY to late the night before)... I hurried and got the workshop up and going.. so I could sit on the couch with cozy blanket and pour through the magazine.. It wasn't until I had read the entire magazine and was looking at the cover again that I saw that not only had they put my piece of art on the cover.. they had also actually featured my NAME! Right underneath the amazingly talented women.. Holly Becker from Decor8 AND Tiffany Kirchner-Dixon from The Fancy Farmgirl! holy cow!! I couldn't believe it!
Now I was even MORE excited! MY name was on the cover!!! lol so I had to go back upstairs and show my husband AGAIN.. I know he loved that.. being woken up twice :)
Anyhow.. I just had to share this news with you.. what a dream come true this year has been for me.. TRULY. So many amazing experiences and opportunities.. It's ironic because right before Christmas I went to Barnes and Noble with my hubby.. and we just sat and talked and I told him about all these "leaps" I wanted to take over the next couple of years. "Wishes" I would love to happen for me as an artist.. It was a long list.. well not THAT long, but long enough I would forget before I got home.. and so on our way out, Ben bought me a journal and told me to write all of them down.. so I would have them to remind me of where I wanted to go and what I wanted to do. Remind me to take those "leaps".
That was my word for this year.. "leap". Over the next couple of weeks, I looked at that list.. over and over.. and one of the things on my list was being in the Artful Blogging magazine. I LOVED that magazine and loved all the blogs featured in there.. I had only recently started blogging again, so I didn't think or even expect to EVER be contacted (I am kind shy in that way.. I don't usually "submit" or put myself out there like that)... so I know it would be a long shot.. as I would never submit it myself.. and really truly.. who was I in the blogging world? But it was still on my list.. a long shot. but a leap.. actually more of a "dream" I wanted... and so when only 2 short months later, Jennifer contacted me out of the blue.. I was floored! I was ecstatic and in shock and truly felt so blessed.
And I have to say, this year has been that way for me. I don't know why, or how I deserve all the good things that keep happening to me. I know the Lord is blessing me..and my family, and I am contantly reminded of a blessing once given to me a long time ago.. that said.. I would be blessed with much, but to be weak, and humble and do the will of the Lord throughout it all. That blessing has been a constant reminder to me this year that ALL of this.. Being featured in this magazine, liscneing my artwork, starting online classes, having an article in Somerset Studio's magazine, having my own "tv/web" show, teaching at major events, being featured on Where woman create.... all of it, has only come through being blessed from my Father in Heaven. Truly.. I didn't do it on my own. He has blessed me with drive and hidden talents I never knew I had.. and has given me opportunities that sometimes I don't feel like I deserve.. so it's been really scary to always try and "stay" humble and stay weak.. so that those blessings and opportunities don't go away. Does that make sense?
(This is a piece that was featured in the Artful Blogging magazine.. totally how I feel)
I am so blessed. SO blessed. I know that. I TRULY know that. I am on my knees constantly thanking Him for that. I just want to stay worthy of those blessings as well.
You know.. I kept that journal with me everywhere I went. Always writing in it, sketching in it. .. and I couldn't believe that by April of this year, almost all of the things on my list, the "leaps" and wishes, I had in that journal, had been crossed off. I remember at my girlfriend retreat we did in April, I was sitting talking with my friends Jeanne and Melody and both of them reminding me about that "list" and how all of those things.. that I had wanted and hoped for and set out determined to do over the next couple of years.. had come to be in just 5 short months. They reminded me of how blessed I was and I was thankful for that reminder. Not long after that, I was off again on another trip.. to a convention and during that trip, I lost that journal. Not sure if it fell out of my bag in the airport, or I left it in a hotel room? ( i did call the hotel in hopes that they had it).. but no such luck. I was REALLy sad at first.. because all of my sketching and my entire "leap" was in that one journal.. and it meant SO much to me.. but then I realized maybe this meant it was time for me to create a new list.. maybe a list of "giving back".. a list of different sorts.. I still need to get a journal for that and start that list. It's on my "list" of things to do..( now that's funny.. lol )
Anyhow, this post has turned into another long "christy sharing her feelings" post.. sorry about that. I just hope that YOU know.. that good things can happen.. dreams can come true.. LEAPS can be made.. if you have enough faith and put enough trust in the Lord and are willing to also listen closely to what He wants you to do. I have realized it's not always been what I wanted to do, but sometimes you have to just listen and TRUST that is the right thing to do. I have seen it in my own life. It's an amazing thing.
Happy Tuesday :)