Thursday, June 30, 2011

Inspiration Workshop: Perfect Bathroom

Happy Thursday, friends!

I'm linking up with Gussy Sews again for the Inspiration Workshop. The prompt this week was: Perfect Bathroom. My whole life, I have had one tiny bathroom to share with the rest of my family, so a little more space would be nice.

Source: 1.bp.blogspot.com via Natalie on Pintrest

This bathroom looks so spacious! I love all the natural light coming in, the big wood beams on the ceiling, and the wood floor. So cozy and relaxing. What would your perfect bathroom look like?

Gussy Sews Inspiration Workshop!

love,
Natalie

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

New Biz Cards + First Friday!

Happy Wednesday, friends!

I got my new business cards in the mail this week! (I wasn't sure how smart is was to post your phone number on the internet, hence the blotting it out.)



They make me happy! You can get one for yourself with every purchase. ;)

This Friday, I will be set up outside at First Friday, located in the heart of the downtown Canton Arts District. I'm so excited!!!


The theme is "Chalk the Walk," and there will be 75 chalk artists beautifying the streets of downtown Canton! First Fridays are all about art, food, music, and family fun, so if you're a local looking for something to do, come on out! It should be a fabulous time! Hope to see you there!

love,
Natalie

 

Monday, June 27, 2011

Sunday Reflections: The Least of These

Happy Monday, friends! Time for Sunday Reflections.

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These precious Indian girls are dalits, or "untouchables." They are considered less than human, treated worse than animals. They are considered good for nothing but slave labor. It doesn't even matter to the Indian government when their people are murdered in broad daylight. 

I remember learning about the caste system in high school history class, but little did I realize that it is still around today, that people are really being treated this horribly now. 
You can change their lives forever.



I hope you will consider getting involved. Not only can you change the life of a child (both now and for eternity), but you can change the lives of their family and possibly even their entire community. Visit Gospel for Asia's website to learn more about sponsoring a child. I know God blesses us when we help "the least of these."


love,
Natalie

P.S. I'm planning on doing a Sunday Reflections link up next Monday, so be thinking about it and pay attention next Sunday! I would LOVE to have you link up!  

Friday, June 24, 2011

On My Heart- Being Disciplined/Sticking with a Schedule

Happy Friday, friends! I'm linking up with Casey for what's on my heart.

A few weeks ago, I was getting so fed up with myself and my lack of having a schedule. I felt like I wasn't getting as much done as I should be. I knew I needed to get up earlier and be more strict with my computer time. (Hello getting lost in cyberspace for an hour or two (yikes!) at a time). I suppose this is something that many people who run their own business from home deal with (I hope!), but I knew it was time to crack the whip.

And crack the whip I did! I was amazed with how much better I felt about my days and everything I was getting done, but... it only lasted for a week. Now I'm back to feeling frustrated again! So, starting today (I'm serious!) here is my schedule...


 
Notice the * explanation at the bottom- very important. I know the key is getting to bed on time at night because when I don't, then I don't want to get up in the morning, and the rest of the day is history. I don't know how mom's do it. I can't imagine throwing a kid or two in the mix.

Granted, I'm not always going to follow this to a T, but it's the goal.

Got any time management tips for me? I'd love to hear them!


love,
Natalie

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Inspiration Workshop: Spend the Day Playing- Beach Style

Happy Thursday, friends!

I'm linking up with Gussy Sews again for the Inspiration Workshop! The prompt for this week was: Spend the Day Playing. This was a no brainer for me! If I could do anything fun for a day, I would go to the beach!


It has seriously been WAY too long since I have been to the beach- 3 years and 9 months to be exact. :) Just looking through these photos again allowed me to relive it a little.


Sunshine, good company, dolphins, and a beautiful sunset are a must.
How would you spend your perfect "fun" day?


Gussy Sews Inspiration Workshop!


love,
Natalie

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Sunday Reflections- Motives + My Dad

Happy Tuesday, friends! Unfortunately my internet was down yesterday, so this post is a day late, but life goes on. Here are my Sunday Reflections.

First of all, since Sunday was Father's Day, I wanted to share a little love with the greatest father a girl could ask for.



I know I wouldn't be doing what I'm doing today if it wasn't for him. He is so supportive of my business and willing to drive me all over creation in his truck, pottery, tent, and tables in tow. I definitely couldn't do this artist life without his help.


Thank you, Dad! I love you ♥

At the beginning of the year, I felt a strong calling to start this blog. I thought it would be the perfect way to build my business and show people what I do. I thought it would be a great marketing tool. However, I knew that I also wanted it to be a place where I shared my faith. The more I prayed about it and started writing, the more I felt like God wanted me to use this as a platform to share and glorify Him, rather than bring glory to myself.

I struggle with this sometimes, meshing business and faith, and keeping the focus on Him rather than myself. Isn't that what marketing is? Making people remember you? Getting them to want what you've got, enough to shell out their hard-earned dollars? Yet this isn't about me. It's about Him. What will He say about my life on this earth when it is finished- "Well done, good and faithful servant?" What will He say about you?

I know these Sunday Reflections have been so good for me, just to stay more focused on Sundays and remember important life lessons. I would recommend writing, even if it's just for yourself personally. Would anyone be interested in doing a link up on Mondays? Let me know! :)

 
love,
Natalie

Friday, June 17, 2011

What's on my Heart- Helping Those in Need

Happy Friday, friends! Time to link up with Casey for what's on my heart.

I'm sure you've all seen photos of the tornado destruction that ripped across the United States several weeks ago.

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It's hard for me to imagine what it would be like to have my home and community destroyed like this.

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If you would like to help out financially with the rebuilding efforts of the communities that have been devasted by these tornados, I have just the place! There is a huge fundraising event going on over at this blog. Artists and crafters from all over the globe have generously donated over $4,800 worth of items that YOU can bid on. For just $1 an entry, you can enter to win a basket of items (and you can enter as many times as you want), one of which includes this...

(soap not included)
Hop on over for more information and to see all the baskets that are available! Together we can make a difference.

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love,
Natalie

Thursday, June 16, 2011

Inspiration Workshop: Green (Cilantro+My Favorite Fajita Recipe!)

Happy Thursday, friends!

I'm linking up with Gussy Sews again this week for the Inspiration Workshop! (Want to join in on the fun? Click here to find out more!) Every week, she gives us a prompt to blog about, then we go back to her blog and link up our posts. It's like a big blog-community party! :)

The prompt for this week: GREEN. I'm sharing one of my favorite recipes using a GREEN herb- cilantro!



We are in full-fledged cilantro season here in northeast Ohio, because cilantro doesn't like it in mid-late summer when its too hot.

Sidenote: I've heard there are some of you out there who don't like cilantro for whatever reason- cilantrophobia. Supposedly, it's a genetic thing, but you should get over it already because you really don't know what you're missing!




These chicken fajitas are one of my favorite foods! (Ok, ok, my mom tells me that I say that about a lot of things.) :)  You will just have to try them for yourself and see what you think.

Chicken Fajitas
- 1 lb. chicken breasts, cut into thin strips
- 4 C. vegetables, thinly sliced (I used red and green peppers and onions)

 Cilantro spice paste:
-  1 C. fresh cilantro leaves (finely chopped)
-  2 TB. soy sauce
-  1 TB. olive oil
-  1 TB. chili powder
-  2 t. ground cumin
-  juice of 1 lime

Mix the cilantro paste with the chicken and allow to marinate for 15 minutes.



Stir-fry chicken in 2 tsp. of oil over medium/high heat until cooked through.


Remove from the pan and keep warm.
Add 2 tsp. of oil and stir-fry veggies until tender-crisp (3-5 minutes).


Serve in tortillas with your favorite toppings (guacamole is a must! plus- more green!) ENJOY!


Recipe from Simply in Season

Gussy Sews Inspiration Workshop!

love,
Natalie

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Inspirational Words

Happy Wednesday, friends! If you're in need of some mid-week inspiration, I hope you enjoy these quotes and verses...

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source: lindseysdolcevita.blogspot.com via Natalie on Pintrest
source: internetcafedevotions.com via Natalie on Pintrest
source: jesustotheworld.tumblr.com via Natalie on Pintrest

love,
Natalie


Monday, June 13, 2011

Sunday Reflections- What would happen if we forgot ourselves?

Happy Monday, friends! Time for another round of Sunday Reflections.

God calls us to be unified with one another as a body of believers. Do you know what the key to unity within the church (your family, your workplace, etc, etc) is?

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How often do you really consider others better than yourself? (I know I've got a long way to go)

Try it today. Be a blessing to others without thinking about yourself. See what happens.


love,
Natalie

Friday, June 10, 2011

What's on My Heart- Comparing

Happy Friday, friends! Time to link up with Casey for what's on my heart.

Lately, I've been convicted with how much I compare myself with others, especially through the internet. It's not pretty, and it's got to stop. I think comparing ourselves with others is something everyone struggles with (especially females), and through the internet, it's just that much easier to "measure" how well you stack up against others- blog followers, blog comments, facebook "likes," facebook friends, esty sales, on, and on, and on.

This is my notebook to stay organized with all things pottery related.



I've had it so long that I often fail to even take note of the verse on the front.



I read this interview last night with Gussy, and she made this statement,
"One thing I've noticed, which has been super helpful in working around {self-doubt}, is that it always happens when I've spent way too much time online. If I'm looking at a lot of blogs, shops, products, tutorials, conversations, giveaways, reviews, photos instead of doing something creative or checking things off my to-do list, in walks Miss Self-Doubt."

Preach it, Gus! The more time I spend following other's every whim, the more I feel down on myself. "I'll never have that many followers." "I'll never be that successful." HELLO, who do I think I am anyways!

"However, I consider my life worth nothing to me, if only I may finish the race and complete the task the Lord Jesus has given me- the task of testifying to the gospel of God's grace."  -Acts 20:24

What is it that you feel God calling you to? Do it with all your might! Don't stand around watching the world go by, feeling like you'll never measure up to everyone else. Be who God created you to be! You are an original.



love,
Natalie

Thursday, June 9, 2011

Inspiration Workshop: Kitchens

Happy Thursday, friends!

I'm linking up with Gussy Sews again this week for the Inspiration Workshop! (Want to join in on the fun? Click here to find out more!) Every week, she gives us a prompt to blog about, then we go back to her blog and link up our posts. It's like a big blog-community party! :)

The prompt for this week was: Kitchens.

These gorgeous handmade pieces are from Gray Works Designs.





The kitchen is quite possibly my favorite room in the house (next to my pottery studio, of course) because it's the place where you get to enjoy food + family. I am a foodie and family gal at heart! I picture myself with a big farmhouse table surrounded by my handsome hubby and a brood of little ones... maybe some day. :)

Gussy Sews Inspiration Workshop!


love,
Natalie

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

I Heart Rings

Happy Wednesday, friends!

I've been uploading new items to my etsy shop over the past week, including these...


What's your favorite way to accessorize?


love,
Natalie

Monday, June 6, 2011

Sunday Reflections: Surrender

Happy Monday, friends! Time for another Sunday Reflections.

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I believe all it takes is one glimpse of our holy God to recognize the filth and ugliness inside of me.

A thousand times I've failed
Still your mercy remains
And should I stumble again
Still I'm caught in Your grace

Everlasting, Your light will shine when all else fades
Never ending, Your glory goes beyond all fame

My heart and my soul, I give you control
Consume me from the inside out, Lord
Let justice and praise, become my embrace
To love You from the inside out

Your will above all else, my purpose remains
The art of losing myself in bringing you praise

Everlasting, Your light will shine when all else fades
Never ending, Your glory goes beyond all fame
And the cry of my heart is to bring You praise
From the inside out, Lord my soul cries out

I feel like so often I try to take matters into my own hands, when I need to give God control of everything. I want to be consumed by Him.

Have you surrendered your life to Christ? I mean, everything. All of your hopes, dreams, and desires, even the little things? I'm so grateful for a merciful God, who never gives up on me. He never gives up on you, either.


love,
Natalie

P.S. I am featured over here today. You really should go check it out... there just may be a giveaway of sorts involved. :)

Friday, June 3, 2011

What's on My Heart- Headbands!

Happy Friday, friends! Time to link up with Casey for what's on my heart... today is lighthearted and fun! :)

I received a belated birthday gift a few days ago, and it has created a tiny obsession. :)
















Headband from Sunshine & Carousels























I've seen headbands rockin' the blogosphere for a while now, but this lady is truly my headband inspiration (plus she inspires me in many other ways!) :)

I'll admit, at first I didn't feel like I had the confidence to wear it (cute yes, but people in my neck of the woods are more... plain? conventional? non-hippie-ish?), but I have come to *love* it! I hope it is the first in an ever-growing headband collection. :)

























Might I add that it looks fab with my pottery post earrings in teal? :)

Do you wear headbands? If so, share your favorite shop!


love,
Natalie


Thursday, June 2, 2011

Inspiration Workshop- Handmade

Happy Thursday, friends!

On Thursdays I will be linking up with Gussy Sews for the Inspiration Workshop! Every week, she gives us a prompt for us to blog about, then we go back to her blog and link up our posts. It's like a big blog-community party! :)

The prompt for this week was: Handmade. I am a strong advocate for buying handmade when possible. Yes, it's usually more expensive, but you are supporting an individual person and their community rather than some huge corporation.


















This is seriously my all-time favorite photo of my work. I love how it combines "both worlds" of my business- pottery and jewelry. It makes me giddy! :)

Do you try to support handmade business owners?

Gussy Sews Inspiration Workshop!


love,
Natalie

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Please Remind Me Why I Garden!

Happy Wednesday, friends!

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I want this blog to be a place of inspiration and encouragement, but sometimes I need to vent my frustrations. Please bear with me. So, last night I got outside to do some much needed work in the garden and came in wondering why on earth I subject myself to this torture! For starters, I returned inside with a beet-red face (hello, it was 90° today!), covered in mosquito bites, dirt (from whacking the mosquitos with my dirty hands), and sweat, with possibly my worst blister to date. I had at least 13 mosquito bites (so much for my new "this really works" all-natural repellent, though most of the bites were on my back where I hadn't put any...), some literally the size of a nickel (no joke!). I would have posted a photo of my bite-covered back for you to see, but I figured that might be a little scandalous, hehe. :)  

It seems that every year, the weeds get worse and worse. It really makes me think, "Way to go, Adam and Eve! You screwed up big time!" I would have posted a photo of all the weeds before I hacked them to pieces, but you wouldn't have wanted to see that, either.

The mosquito bites, dirt, sweat, and weeds are one thing, but when I feel like I go to all this work for... the rabbits and deer to have a feast, oh, don't get me started. I think I need a gun. And did I mention the dreadful black walnut tree nearby that pretty much stunts the growth of most plants? 

I think gardening can be a very rewarding hobby, but between running my pottery business and having a life, it's hard to find time for it. I used to enjoy it, but now I'm not so sure. Next year when I start getting seed catalogs, please remind me of this post, and have my head examined when I start thinking about planting stuff. I think I will need a year off.


love,
Natalie