Sunday, January 30, 2011

Seeing With New Eyes

My brother lives in a convalescent hospital  right in the heart of Downtown LA. It's a poor neighborhood ,with a lot of graffiti & boarded up windows. The bus stops are packed with mother's & their children, the elderly with their shopping bags & random people just trying to get back & forth.

Everytime I go to visit Johnny, at some point my eyes are drawn to two abandoned houses that have been moved to a lot directly across the street from his hospital. I sit in my car & stare as my mind begins to wander...

where were these houses originally located,
who moved them to this awkward corner of LA,

why were they moved there & what plans do they have for them,
what did they look like when they were first built in all their glory,

were there grand family's living in them, all dressed in white,
on a hot summer day did children run in & out of the front door playing,
while their parents sat in wicker chairs on the front porch, 

does anyone else see the magic & beauty that I do,
or do they simply see old & crumbling houses?

I am reminded of a famous quote by Marcel Proust...
‘The real voyage of discovery lies not in seeking new landscapes, but in seeing with new eyes.’
Johnny's out of the hospital & back to where he's called home for the past seven years. He is in hospice care now & I will visit tomorrow & the next day & I will think about the two old houses sitting across the street, all boarded up & covered with graffiti & I will believe in my heart...
there is a reason for everything under heaven.


Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Beyond Blessed & a Bead Soup

{Lori's beautiful presentation of red boxes with purple ribbon}
My Sweetest of Hearts,
How does one say Thank You, when they reach out for guidance & light
& are surrounded by Shooting Stars?
The Brilliance of your compassion, prayers & quiet wisdom,
helped me hear God's whispers & leaves me feeling Beyond Blessed.
Johnny & I will be forever grateful.
We asked for Light & were given a Beacon of Faith & Hope,
that helped us find our way through the dark.
My Heart is so Full,
Thank You isn't nearly enough.

{her labels with paper lanterns on them are divine}
And just when I needed it the most, something Wonderful came in the mail for me yesterday...
my very own BEAD SOUP. My lovely friend & amazing jewelry designer,
is hosting her 3rd Bead Soup Party & 210 friends are playing with her!
{simply saying that number out loud makes my hands sweat}

The idea of the party is to pair you up with a partner who has a completely different style then yours. Partners then exchange a focal piece, a clasp, some beads to get them started & any other fun extras you might want to add. Using the main components, we design a piece of jewelry & on February 26th we have our reveal & a Blog Hopping Party to go check out what everyone much fun, right! Now for the biggest surprise...guess who my partner is??? Lori Anderson herself!! about pressure! I was horrified & delighted, all at the same time! Horrified, cuz what in the world could I give my bead guru that she would slightly like & delighted, cuz I knew I would be getting some 'Good Stuff!' My 1st box had my Extras in it...yes, those are my extras. A round, glass focal bead, a ceramic starfish by Spirited Earth & a glass pansy by CC Lampwork. I adore them all, but that Pansy just takes my breath away!!

My 2nd box had an amazing Thai, silver focal...
{I've never used anything like this, my mind is swimming with the possibilities}

and an abundance of beyond beautiful beads!!

I got labradorite, violet opals, amethyst, handmade lampwork glass beads by Davinia Design & cultured pearls. What a gorgeous & subtle color palette, it's stunning!

Thank you soooo much Sweet Lori, for sending me such awesome ingredients for my Bead Soup!
How can it not turn out yummy with all of these beauties added to the mix.

If you get a chance, please stop by Lori's blog to find out more & make sure you come back for the reveal on February 26th...I can't wait to see what everyone creates & that includes me! ;)

And as for Johnny...I will keep you posted. I'm at peace with my decisions.
Tammy said, "God led you to your brother not to just take him as you said, he led you to your brother so you could find him again. So, he would not be alone when it was his time to go. To know he had his loving sister with him. God let you find him so you could let him know it is okay to go now. He waited those years for you."
Again Sweet Friends, no words can express my Heart.


Sunday, January 23, 2011

Bonnie Raitt's 'Magic Waters'

There's a quote from 'Field of Dreams' that I've always loved.
Terrance Mann {James Earl Jones} is sitting in the bleachers & Ray {Kevin Costner} is wondering if anyone will come to his 'Field of Dreams'. Mann Says,
"They'll arrive at your door as innocent as children, longing for the past. Of course, we won't mind if you look around, you'll say. It's only $20 per person. They'll pass over the money without even thinking about it: for it is money they have and peace they lack. And they'll walk out to the bleachers; sit in shirtsleeves on a perfect afternoon. They'll find they have reserved seats somewhere along one of the baselines, where they sat when they were children and cheered their heroes. And they'll watch the game and it'll be as if they dipped themselves in magic waters. The memories will be so thick they'll have to brush them away from their faces. People will come Ray."

The people did come to see Miss Bonnie Raitt & it was as 'if we had dipped ourselves in Magic Waters'. Her music was a pool of memories that flowed over us like a gentle wave. She was AMAZING!

Courtney & I walked down the Event Center hallway early in the afternoon when we first got to Pala Casino, to use the 'facilities'. I was telling her how cool I thought it was that they had Bonnie playing over the speakers for all of her fans, really a nice touch.

Then, we heard Bonnie stop singing & start talking. We walked over to some nearby double doors & looking through the crack we saw this...

You can barely make out the picture, but yep...that is Bonnie rehearsing with her band. I can't believe Court got this picture through that little, tiny crack in the doors, she rocks! ;)

We played some slots & came out ahead overall, baby girl did the best, winning $57 on video poker.


Texas was well represented, with my Magnolia Pearl Tee & Texas Charm Necklace!

Finally, we took our seats as the show was about to begin. How thoughtful of them to have a little bar right inside the Event Center, so convenient. I did par take in a variety of libations, but this was my birthday present, so Courtney was our DD...TG! {don't I look a little too happy here? lol}

The show was off the charts...really! Bonnie is 61 & rocks it like she's 20. She sang everything I could have asked for. 2 hours of heart breakin, hard rockin, soulful blues as only Bonnie can do.
Once again I find...I 'Wish You Were Here' Sweet Hearts!!!


Friday, January 21, 2011

Bonnie Raitt Tonight...Oh Yeahhhh!

{the original Magnolia Pearl}
If you were to cut me & the symphony of my soul was to flow from my veins, you'd hear two musicians...
Jackson Browne & Bonnie Raitt.
They have been with me longer then most of the people in my life.
Longer then my daughter, longer then my husband...
longer then 2 of my siblings & longer then most of my oldest & dearest friends.
If I were a movie, Jackson & Bonnie would be the score to my life.

For my birthday in November, my amazing daughter surprised me with tickets to see Bonnie in concert & guess what??? Tonight's the night!!! Oh Yeahhhh, tonight's the night & I'm ready to get my party on!

I first saw Bonnie at the tiniest of venues, The Golden Bear in Huntington Beach back when I graduated from Marina High School. It sat on PCH right across from the pier, filled with long family style dinner tables & watching a performance there was like having a concert at home, it was as intimate & up close & personal as it gets. Oh so sadly, The Golden Bear has long since been torn down & replaced by a new two story stucco & tile roofed shopping complex, the not so wonderful modernization of HB.

The past is past, right! So tonight, my daughter & I will head down towards San Diego to the gorgeous Pala Casino Spa Resort for a night of dinner, drinks, gambling & music. Bonnie Raitt is there, I get to watch her perform again & listen to the songs that raised me & share it all with the child I's going to be MAGIC & that 'Circle of Life' just keeps on rollin. I'm too excited, I have to go get ready right now. I wonder if she'll recognize me?  ;)
More to come!

XOXO Sweat Hearts

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Serenity & The Road Not Taken

Nestled in the foothills of the San Gabriel Mountains lies a spiritual oasis, a lighthouse in the storm, a place where Serenity resides.

This moment is for us to rest our minds, to nourish our souls, to release our burdens.

Take my hand & walk with me in a place where few words are needed.

Where Peace surrounds you...

& abundance awaits you.

'The Road Not Taken'

Two roads diverged in a yellow wood,

And sorry I could not travel both

And be one traveler, long I stood

And looked down one as far as I could

To where it bent in the undergrowth;

Then took the other, as just as fair,

And having perhaps the better claim

Because it was grassy and wanted wear,

Though as for that the passing there

Had worn them really about the same,

And both that morning equally lay

In leaves no step had trodden black

Oh, I marked the first for another day!

Yet knowing how way leads on to way

I doubted if I should ever come back.

I shall be telling this with a sigh

Somewhere ages and ages hence:

Two roads diverged in a wood, and I,

I took the one less traveled by,

And that has made all the difference.

Robert Frost

Every now & then, the world must be turned off
& the spirit of the soul must have room to fly.
Every now & then, we must remind ourselves that our journey's,
no matter how misunderstood by others, are our journey's
& that by taking the 'Road Less Traveled',
the path of the heart can so often make,