When I stop to think about the reasons I’m blessed in this life, one of the real meaningful reasons-my friends make that short list. I choose friends that I don’t have to be someone else around. Ones that do not care one iota how much money I make, how much I weigh, or what I wear. In fact, we can sit around for hours together and laugh about how much money we don’t have and about how we are going to eat another piece of cheesecake despite what may be good for us. These friendships are the stuff of life that just can’t be bought or sold.
Once in a while I get together with a group of these friends and we have a girls night. I think it was Joy who started the tradition. We wear our grubbies and show up at somebody’s house. We laugh, we eat, we talk long into the night. We do the stuff that girls do. It’s a blast and does more for my spirit than I can fully explain.
One night, my friend Ginny had us over for art night. She bought us all our own canvas, set out paints and brushes, and we all sat on a sheet in her basement and painted. I had never once painted before-have never held a brush in my hand and contemplated what was at the end of my fingertips. I was a little scared. However, my friends did what they do best and they just encouraged me. We encouraged one another. What resulted was truly a beautiful sight to behold.
Four ladies, four completely unique paintings, four friendships stronger.
Last night Jen had us over for a mixed media ladies night. We knew that we were going to create our own journals inspired by the art genre of mixed media. She’s a big believer in journaling and now I know why.
We arrived to her house to see a table full of wonderful art supplies. There were paints and pastels, ribbons and glitter, sponges and glue…
She had art supplies on every surface in her kitchen displayed so beautifully, it was a really awesome things to see. I just started snapping shots.
I noticed we each had our own place setting, which anyone who knows me would know how much I loved that touch…and each of us had a little name tag and a whole booklet of things that were all our own.
Jen went through all of our Pinterest boards and found the things that we love the most. She printed them out for us to put in our journals. There were things in there that were personal to each of us and things that we had in common. I have to tell you, I was truly touched.
Jen proceeded to tell us some of the things she loves most about the art of writing in her journals. She carefully explained in the most unassuming way the tricks and techniques she’s learned in art classes and just by experimenting on her own. She showed us these beautiful books she’d made with pages of gorgeous art and writing. I just love hearing people talk about something they love. It makes for such profoundly interesting conversation. It was plain to see how much she loves art and how much it has done for her in her life. We all noticed that she really has no idea how good her art is-it’s nothing short of amazing. Ginny’s the same way about her art-Joy and I tease them about how modest they are. Those two should be selling their stuff and making bank.
We all started to work on our journals while Jen explained each step.
This is Jen’s daughter Afton. She is a little artist herself, and just as cute as a button.
One thing I learned from Jen, is that when one engages in art, they should approach it as a child would…unafraid, unhampered by rules, completely unconcerned about what others think. I decided to do what she does the best I could, so I put down my paintbrush, I stuck my fingers in the paint and swirled them across my page. I got my fingers crusted with Mod Podge, I sprinkled glitter with sheer abandon.
What resulted were all works of art…all unique and wonderful. Keepsakes of beauty and friendship.
I am excited to sit down and write in my journal and let it prompt me to think about the blessings in my life. Sometimes we need reminders of what we truly need, and what can be tossed out. I’m reminded that it’s the quality of friends and loved ones, not the quantity. In fact, that’s what life should be full of-quality moments shared with those who truly care.