New Canvases

Since these days I spend most of my time at hospitals and rehabilitation facilities, my creative canvases are pretty limited. I'm becoming my own canvas by trying new hair and clothing.  It doesn't come easily for me.  Here's a short facebook post


 Through stage 3 mesothelioma and a stroke, she has been by his side unfailingly.
Sleeps in the hospital rooms with him.  And on the sofa next him while at home.
Reads the Bible to him every morning.

Together they have witnessed to and prayed for more nurses, doctors and patients who have crossed our path in the last six months than I have in my entire life.  I have been blessed to see them in action, representing Christ's unfailing love to everyone around them.  It's made me want to be like them.  Opened my heart to souls needing more.  It's inspiring to watch a very sick man lifting prayers for so many others.  I'm awestruck watching my mom loving my dad "til death do us part" and yet loving God even more.

Happy Mother's Days is not quite enough.

Update:  I'm sorry that it's been so long since I have posted anything to my blog. It's been a whirlwind of hospitals lately but I have been trying to do quick updates on my facebook page so please follow along there if you don't see anything here. Dad is coming up on his last chemo this week and then we will head into Madison on June 4th to schedule the surgery to have his right lung removed.   He is very weak and is sleeping a lot.  But his vitals and levels have been good.  He had a brain stem stroke on March 4th and does have some deficits from that but has good therapists and is making improvements.  Mostly his vision and balance were affected but he also has some confusion. We aren't sure but we have reason to hope that after the surgery, when chemo & meds aren't exaggerating everything that those deficits will improve.  The medical teams say it's a miracle that he's doing as well as he is.   Although he is weak, he is unfailing.  He's growing anxious to get beyond this and is in good spirits.

How you can help:   Pray.  Because God is unfailing and He is not weak.  Specifically, you could pray that dad gets through this last chemo strong enough to withstand a very major surgery.  And pray for energy for mom and Steve & I.

It Isn't Always Pretty

 The first good snowfall hit and our historic neighborhood is a glistening wonderland.
Heavenly hosts, and all that. 
But through the doors of our drafty home things are not always pretty.  Sometimes, dare I even admit, the cohabitants are downright ugly to one another.  There are times the pretty decor is overridden by the weeds of homeschooling and creating.  There are times that the kitchen is disgustingly dirty.  There are times when illness hits.  I think that all of the above have applied to our home at one time or another over these last couple months. But something quite unexpected happened last week and I'm not good at talking about it.  I don't know why, because I'm good at talking.  About almost anything.  

But when prayer is needed, it's time to speak up.
Many of you have met my parents at our market events.  We host The Vintage Market at their home.  Most of you know that I am very close to them.  We eat Sunday dinner together every week and talk on the phone everyday. So I'm sure you understand the rattled-to-my-core feeling at learning that my dad has been diagnosed with non-small cell lung cancer.  "Six months, if left untreated" the oncologist says in the middle of lots of big words I didn't understand.  I find myself falling apart, tripping over pieces of me as I'm trying to keep everyone else together.  

We are still preparing for a lovely Christmas and praising God for all the family coming to visit and the beautiful things about this season.  We are laughing when we can laugh, trimming the trees, hanging the holly, and loving the freshly fallen snow.  We are playing Christmas music, enjoying the twinkling lights and reminding the kids that Jesus is why we have Christmas.  We are creating and baking and conspiring about gifts.   
But it isn't always pretty.

If you would pray for us, we would be so grateful.

The Farmstyle Wedding

 Because one of the biggest things in my life as mom occurred in the last month, I have to brag a wee bit...
Canvas by Serendipity Refined
photo by me

photo via my son, Noah
Rehearsal dinner on the farm - just one fence away from where the ceremony took place. 
We prayed "You've calmed the winds before..."  and the prairie winds that had us worried all day were gentle breezes by the start of rehearsal.

Farmstyle GPS

Anticipation from the bride's tent

 Mitch's bride and his mama (in the reflection)

The week before the wedding, one of the bridesmaid's dresses hadn't arrived but unbelievably we were able to find a very close match at the mall.  And I loved that Haley wanted all the moms and grandmas wedding dresses hanging in her tent.

 The bride and groom's sisters as flowergirls.

My guys - the groom and best man on the right.
I'm still not sure where this super cool old limestone building is.  The wedding party took off down the road in Mitch's pick-up truck for a few minutes after the ceremony.  It was an evening wedding so we had limited daylight to work with.  Our friends, Bob and Karmen and Kim, did all of the photography as a gift when our scheduled photographer had to back out at the last minute. How they got so many lovely photos in such a short time frame is a miracle.

My little guy, the vow bearer 

The amazing bouquets and boutonnieres were created by our hugely talented friend Kim!
Roses, pinecones, raw cotton and burlap - all freeze dried so they will last forever.

The wedding was held on the bride's grandparent's farm.   Karen did a great job of adding all the little touches!

Their prayer
In the midst of all the romantic decor, THIS is what it was all for!
Thank you, Father, for creating these two for each other.

 "The Plot Thickens"

Our menu was chili, cornbread and apple pie but the kids had a cutting cake and we added in some fresh things from the farm.  Friends & aunts pitched in with pasta and fruit salads.  There's no such thing as a "simple" wedding.  =)

Wash stand near the port-a-potty

Bing Crosby's "I'll Capture Your Heart" gave a vintage note to the DJ's table.

Our dance - My boy remembered the song from his childhood.
"...'Cause somewhere in the course of this life, my little boy will need a Godly wife - So hold on to Jesus baby wherever you are..."  
I held it together (sorta) all day until that moment.  If he hadn't been holding me up, I would've been reduced to a puddle right then.

Candlelight dinner - Good thing too because the generator was persnickety.

We hand dyed all the girls ruffle wraps.
It was c-o-l-d after the sun went down.

The bonfire was the perfect place to take a break from dancing.

I'm dying to show you all the decor and props that we poured ourselves into for the months leading up to the wedding!

But we had a couple special guests that are going to show you all that.
We are incredibly honored to be part of Fifi's new book Prairie Style Weddings!

Many, many friends gifted items for our big event.  I can't even begin to thank all of you for the help with food, photos, watching my kids, and the gorgeous handmade items!!!!  You are an immeasurable blessing to us.

For more photos and details... Keep an eye on Fifi's page for the release of Prairie Style Weddings so you can see all the beautiful handiwork of our friends in this vintage industry.

Wedding photography by:
Bob Bryer Photography
Serendipity Refined

The Vintage Market!

The Harvest 2013 Vintage Market is right around the corner!
Sept 20-21 9:00-4:00

 Lots and lots of NEW vendors!
Don't worry, many of your favorites have returned too!
We are growing by leaps and bounds so we have selected a new (and permanent) Harvest location with a meandering pasture and lots of room to grow.
Very conveniently located just 3 miles from Cherryvale Mall. 
*3 miles off I90 and 2 miles off US 20* (Get Directions here)
If you are coming from out of town and need to book a hotel, here's a link to local hotels, and restaurants.

Glampers, you are invited to camp FREE on our event grounds!
Show off your vintage glamping style!

Do you have a vintage camper that you would like to sell? Promote it free at The Vintage Market!
Just contact me so we can save you a space. 

Vintage & Handmade shopping
Vintage Campers
Food & Music
It's going to be a lovely vintage weekend!

Keep an eye here and our facebook page as we begin announcing vendors, sharing sneak peeks and counting down the days!

September 20th-21st
9:00 - 4:00
Looking for something that used to be on the sidebar? Click HERE


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