Ann-Margaret's Visions » A little glimpse of the world through my eyes as I run my business, enjoy photography, share my crafting creativity, enjoy designing personalized gifts, spend time with my sweet hubby, love my furry baby Tucker the Westie, and continue to grow in my FAITH.

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I’m loving some of the fun girlies that are coming to life on the pages of my art journals! It’s amazing to see the different looks my art takes on when I just LET GO and truly enjoy the process! I always enjoy the process of creating, but there is something so very different about what blooms on the pages of my art journals when I just wait for things to appear or get really lost in the moment…not thinking about any particular outcome.  I love this stage of the ART game! I did this background several weeks ago…first collaging with various papers and then, splashing washes of paint here and there.  Our prompts for this week in the Get Messy Art Journal community are all about freedom and expression of feelings so I think these pages are perfect because I certainly just let them speak for themselves!  🙂

peace-graffiti-artwork-mixedmedia-paintingWhen I took a peek at this page several weeks later I decided it looked like a shirt down on the right ~ so of course, I knew I had to draw a sassy girlie!  🙂  She was soon coming to life! And, oh, how I loved all the messages that were speaking from her heart!

peace-girl-artwork-mixedmedia-paintingThen, I decided the wheels of the bicycle would be a perfect start for sunglasses for this fabulous girlie!  🙂  She definitely needed a sassy accessory!

peace-girl-art-mixed-media-sunglassesPEACE is so important to this girlie ~ she longs for her heart to feel peace, to find new ways to discover it, and to share it with others that may need a little for themselves. When she’s on the search for this amazing peace she may put on magical glasses so that she is sure to not miss all the little things, the hidden places, and the beautiful messages that may teach her all about how to tuck more into her heart.  This girlie ~ she’s on a mission!

peace-girl2-mixed-media-art-pinkShe realizes searching for PEACE and holding onto it is absolutely necessary to live the life she dreams of. She knows it’s so important to SMILE and enjoy laughing along the way, and she knows that she must be true to her heart.  And, that means she must be her SASSY ‘n FABULOUS self!  🙂  This next girlie is another one where I just LET GO and let her bloom as she wanted to.  Yes, very different from how my girlies usually look!

girl-loose-free-pink-flower-blackhairShe is created with many layers…another splash of paint here and a smudge of color there.  Her heart is filled with hope, dreams, and a longing to let her light shine for Him. She loves wearing rosettes in her hair, wearing lots of PINK, and adding doses of “Kaylee JOY” to the cuppas of all those she encounters! 🙂 Oh, this girlie…she wants to do life BIG…and, colorful…oh, so colorful! 🙂

girl-messy-mixedmedia-yellow-letgo-artShe knows life can get messy…it can be oh, so tough. She knows her faith keeps her grounded, and she knows that all the crazy, messy, colorful layers all come together to create her unique soul.  She wants other girlies to know that it’s from the depths of their souls where the light flickers…LET YOUR LIGHT SHINE!  🙂

girl-mixedmedia-loose-artwork-flower-artistBecause when you do ~ Ooh la la ~ it is so very magnificent!  🙂  Just be you ~ let YOUR COLORS come through!  🙂

This sweet chick below smiles at me each morning as I find my way to my desk. We often chat and share thoughts, and she forever encourages me through our precious memories and her sweet signs that she spreads about my days. She’s one of my most favorite girlies in the world ~ forever! {My sweet niece, Kaylee, whom has the most beautiful Angel Wings now.}

kaylee-mermaid-photo-memories-myangel I hope you’ll try doing a bit of letting go as you play in your journals! It’s such fun to see where the process takes you when you do. I tend to always feel even more inspired after I’ve greeted my journals in this way. It’s as though it unleashes huge doses of creativity. Hmm…kinda amazing how more of the good stuff flows when we can just let go and let nature take its course!  🙂

Let YOUR LIGHT shine today, and try loosening your grip on the paintbrush a bit…you’ll be amazed at what you create! *And, this can be applied to many areas of our life…not just artwork!  🙂

Hugs ~ Hope you have a HAPPY weekend!


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Copyright 2016 Ann-Margaret, Artist~Writer~Photographer/Ann-Margaret’s Visions
Please do not copy/use text, photos, or images (graphics) without permission.
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  • Tania - February 20, 2016 - 12:50 pm

    LOVE LOVE LOVE IT!!! Happy Saturday!!♡♡♡ReplyCancel

  • Tracey Fletcher King - February 20, 2016 - 2:16 pm

    Fabulous post and just love the girlies to bits. Getting messy and loving the process make such wonderful results and just make your heart sing don’t they!ReplyCancel

I am so excited to tell you about a fabulous art community I have joined! It’s called the “Get Messy Art Journal” community, and I am so HAPPY I decided to join this fun and creative group of artists! I had seen some of the art on Instagram months ago and reminded myself to check it out later. Last Sunday I was busy but just happened to see the email they sent out about registration.  I paused a moment from whatever it was I was in the midst of and took time to read all about it.  I could feel my heart smiling, but mostly, I could feel sweet Kaylee giving me a nudge, encouraging me to sign up.  You see, my heart has been so heavy with such heartache and sadness since we lost her {3 months ago yesterday}, and if I’m being really honest with you, I will tell you that I have had a bit of a difficult time focusing at times.  My heart and mind runneth over with all of my goals, new ideas, and plans for by business and time in the studio, but when the heart hurts so…well, it’s true what they say ~ grief can steal your focus.  I have been having these little nudges in my heart and soul telling me that I have to be true to my core…get back to my painting, follow my heart, live the “Kaylee Joy” that I so encourage you about ~ that I have to hold onto my dose and let it work its magic.  And, I assure you ~ “Kaylee Joy” is quite magical…Kaylee truly was pure magic wrapped in the most beautiful soul, and this is my way of honoring her and helping her legacy of love and light to keep on shining! But, goodness, some days the sadness…the missing my chats with her…the longing for her hugs ~ well, it is just too much for my heart to handle.  It can certainly feel that way, but if you know me, then, you know my faith is what carries me through.  Each day I hold this image in my heart of me walking with God…Him holding my hand…letting me cry…letting me share special memories of my time with her…expressing just how much I miss my best friend, and, then, He reminds me about this beautiful thing called “Kaylee Joy” that I created…that He laid on my heart.  Yes, I came up with the phrase, but it was so easy because she was so full of life, love, this beautiful light that led so many people to see how her heart loved Jesus, and this amazing compassion that engulfed everyone she came in contact with the moment they were greeted with her smile.  Oh, how everyone talks about THAT SMILE…the one that has brightened so many days, touched many hearts, and continues to give hope and beauty to all those that knew her.  As the minutes ticked by, and I reread that email, I could hear her saying, “Auntie {in our fabulous French accent we often used!}, you must join this…you must let your heart be a part of this special community! It will be so good for you! I want you to do this…I will love watching you create, and I will be a part of it all! You turned me onto art journaling, and I so loved sharing how I was falling in love with it…do this…so we can continue to share this journey.  It will help your heart to heal a little bit more each day…I promise you! You need this…do this for YOU!”  And, so then my finger hit that registration button, and my heart smiled because I knew it was just the thing to do! And, I knew it was going to be such sweet therapy for my soul! 🙂 Yep, that’s my DIVA bestie below…oh, how we loved being at the beach together! 🙂 One of my happiest days ~time spent with her!

kaylee-joy-diva-bestie-beach
So, back to the “Get Messy Art Journal” Community ~ this is their mission statement: “An art journaling program that is a school, art playground and family. We are a group of like minded art journalers who have come together under this art form to learn, share, practice our skills and push past our creative limits with hopes to inspire. Our community values consistent creating, encouragement and support and trying new things. We would love to have you join us as a member of Get Messy Art Journal.” {Click on the link to find out how you can become a “Get Messian”!}

GetMessy-ImaGetMessian-2The theme for this season is HAPPY! How perfect is that?!! 🙂  I am all about some HAPPY now!! I just love how my sweet girlie below turned out.  I had started the background before and done a quick sketch on it but had not finished it.  I remembered I had left the word “happiness” visible on her face and just knew it needed to be the first piece I did for my get messy art journal.  This sweet girlie stands for so much…she is the messenger of “Kaylee Joy” ~ she knows that if it is spread then hearts will experience more happiness and go out and spread JOY to all those around! She is inspired daily by one of the sweetest gifts God has ever blessed her with…the love of a niece that she continues to feel on a daily basis.  And, this girlie is determined to help her love and light continue to spread!

kayleejoy-happy-get-messy-journal-closeup-artjournalShe knows that JOY lives in each heart, and sometimes we just have to nurture it a little so it can truly show us just how magical it is!

kayleejoy-butterfly-artjournal-get-messy-artist-mixed-mediaShe knows that life needs to be CELEBRATED ~ and, yes, this means beyond our birthdays! 🙂  She knows that cupcakes are needed often, and they are the sweetest when shared! *Oh, how Kaylee and  I loved sharing cupcakes, and she loved baking them and surprising others with them!  🙂 She wants to let others know that they must hold a dose of “Kaylee Joy” in their hearts at all times, because they need to be fueled by it first  ~ then, they are able to go out and spread it to all those around! She knows hearts feel a flutter, they smile, and, they feel the deepest warmth of love when they are touched by “Kaylee Joy”! This girlie ~ she is YOU ~ she is ME ~ she is the HEART OF MY PRECIOUS KAYLEE!  She longs to inspire others, help them find their way through difficult times, learn what it really means to cherish the “little things”, and know just how infectious a SMILE is! She wants YOU to know how special YOU ARE…and, she wants YOU to know that you touch more hearts than you will ever know! SMILE ~ Let YOUR light shine!  🙂

kayleejoy-cupcake-bday-celebration-2016I love that I found paper that said “Celebrate ~ Happy Birthday” on it because I just celebrated my birthday! I just think it makes this girlie even more perfect for the beginning of my art journal with “Get Messy”! I know this community is going to be such a special part of my journey of grief and navigating ways to heal.  Everyone has been so welcoming and encouraging, and committing to this is truly what I need right now.  So, my heart is CELEBRATING about making that decision to join! 🙂

kayleejoy-mixed-media-happy-get-messy-journal-artist
Since our prompts are all about HAPPY, well, it’s quite fitting for me to include a beachy page! If you’ve been following me, then, you know we moved from my fave spot…the BEACHes of Florida…to Virginia in September.  I do love living in Alexandria, but of course, this mermaid (I declare I am one!) does miss wiggling her toes in the sand so the beach finds its way into my journals quite often! 🙂 For this page I had fun using some of my photography, splashing paint about, and just getting messy!

mixedmedia-seagulls-journal-artjournaling-florida-beachOh, how I always loved watching the boats go by!!  And, my feathered friends…my fave!

mixedmedia-art-florida-ocean-boat-segullsAnd, then, a single line drawing that is not quite finished but is all about that same HAPPY place…the beach! I love sailboats and anchors, and I’ll add a quote/verse to this one and share as soon as it’s all done! 🙂

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I’ve always loved art journaling and probably have a few too many journals ~ but, who’s counting?!! 🙂 If you’ve been watching some of my YouTube videos then you know I’ve been talking with you about them and how I want to help you learn more about art and maybe give art journaling a try if you haven’t before.  Stay tuned…I’ll be sharing lots of fun stuff here, on Instagram, and Facebook! And, being a part of the “Get Messy” community is just perfect because my heart has been craving being a bit more messy in the studio!

Hugs and Happy Creating!

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Copyright 2016 Ann-Margaret, Artist~Writer~Photographer/Ann-Margaret’s Visions
Please do not copy/use text, photos, or images (graphics) without permission.
Thanks so much for visiting my blog!

  • Janan - February 5, 2016 - 9:45 pm

    I cannot wait to see what you bless us with what you share!!ReplyCancel

  • Tanyalee - February 6, 2016 - 12:43 am

    So glad you followed your heart and registered. I feel the Kaylee Joy coming through loud and clear. XxReplyCancel

And, just like that ~ “Kaylee Joy” started blooming all about 2016…it had been planted long ago and blossomed in our sweet Kaylee {my niece} for 18 years…now, I get to help her to continue to spread it ~ and so do YOU!  I’ll be sharing this video all along because I know many have said they missed it. “Kaylee Joy” bracelets have arrived and are going out into the world in the next few days! I’ll be sharing how you can be sure to have one…to remind you to spread “Kaylee Joy” but also to remember to hold onto a dose of it for yourself! More info coming soon on its true definition, how we get it, just what it is, and why it’s so amazing to share it! Kaylee and I have so much to share about it all! I hope you enjoy the video..as I shared on Facebook ~ I had no plans of doing this video that day…was just going to talk for a few minutes to test lighting and such in a spot. Well, quite a few minutes later my heart was still spilling out…it was a God thing for sure! And, Kaylee! So, grab a cuppa {you may need a few!}, and lets spend a little time together! And, please feel free to share the video…I would love for you to because it’s the first step in sharing “Kaylee Joy”! Hugs to you all, and thank you so much for your sweet thoughts about the video and your requests for a bracelet…it makes my heart SMILE so big {and, I know it does Kaylee’s} to think of “Kaylee Joy” being spread allover the world!

***Should you have any issues watching the video here on the blog, you may go to my YouTube channel  to watch it.   I have tested it on computers, mobile devices, in Chrome and Safari, and it works fine so please visit my channel or refresh your page if you have trouble viewing it below.  And, always be sure to give the page time to completely load.  🙂

Warm hugs and much love to you ~

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Copyright 2016 Ann-Margaret, Artist~Writer~Photographer/Ann-Margaret’s Visions
Please do not copy/use text, photos, or images (graphics) without permission.
Thanks so much for visiting my blog!

Oh, my, it’s been so long since my last post.  Well, a crazy move will certainly cause things to be off schedule, and I can safely say our move from Florida to Virginia was the worst one we’ve ever had as far as the packing/delivery process goes. We moved in early September, and it was around the end of October before I even began to feel a little settled. We love our new home in Alexandria, Virginia, and if you follow me on Instagram or Facebook then you’ve seen lots of pics from the walks Cooper and I take.  Then, November began with the worst phone call I have ever received.  Our sweet, precious niece, Kaylee, that you have read all about here and on my other pages, passed away at 18 years of age.  I am heartbroken, devastated, and have such sadness in my heart because we were best friends…and, she was like a daughter to me.  There are no words to truly describe this heartache for our family because Kaylee was and still is the most beautiful LIGHT that shines in our lives ~ she has one of the most beautiful hearts I have ever known, and I am so very blessed to be loved by her.  There is a huge void in my life that only she can fill…we have such a connection/bond with each other so not having her here on earth with me to share life with is devastating.  Yes, I know she is with my sweet Granny and other family members in Heaven, I will see her again one day, and that she is free from the excruciating migraines she suffered with for over three years.  But yes, I am also selfish in wanting her to be here with me.  And, you know what…that’s ok.  I know God knows my heart, and I know it’s normal for me to feel this way.  If I didn’t wish for her to be here…well, there would be nothing natural or healing about that. So, right now, I miss her so very much, and I always will…and, I wish she were still here to call me so she could tell me about her day.  Since her passing, I have had beautiful signs of her being with me, and I can feel her so strongly each day.  I will share more from my heart about these special little “hellos” from her and about our relationship in the weeks to come.  I want to thank all of you that have reached out to my family and me…thank you for your continued prayers, your hugs, and your love. We appreciate every moment you have expressed your love to us.  It blesses our hearts so much to see how many lives Kaylee touched with her light and love, and I know she will continue to.

kaylee-annmargaret-grannysfuneral-nieceAs December begins I want to do something special each day ~ if you follow me on Facebook  and Instagram you will have seen my post for yesterday.  I realize some of you may not be in those spots though so I want to be sure to share a dose of JOY with you here!  🙂  So, let’s get December off to a JOY~filled month! MERRY CHRISTMAS month!  “Choose JOY” has been my phrase of the year for 2015, and I think the month of December is the perfect time to make sure every day is filled with a little JOY ~ the perfect time to remind ourselves that it exists even on the most difficult days. So, I”m going to be sharing doses of JOY with you throughout the month ~ it may be some of my favorite Christmas ornaments, our past Christmas cards, JOY~full messages, snippets of JOY from my walks about Old Town, how I’m finding and creating JOY in my art, and so much more! And, this will be the perfect welcome to the beautiful phrase I will be celebrating for 2016 ~ I’ll reveal this on January 1st! 🙂  Right now, my heart longs for JOY…and, some of my most special moments of JOY come from my memories shared with Kaylee. Kaylee loved Christmas so I know she will be such a part of this with me! As we reflect on the true meaning of Christmas ~ the most beautiful birth of JOY of our Jesus ~ may our hearts reflect on how His love has led us to love. There are so many families experiencing such sadness right now, and my heart breaks right along with them, as I hear of loved ones lost in their families…in your families. Praying that we will feel God’s peace during this special season and be filled with JOY from the love we hold in our hearts for our special loved ones! *This cute photo was our Christmas card from 2010…this is our sweet Tucker {Tuesdays with Tucker }, and we still miss this adorable little guy every day but are so very thankful for the almost 15 years we shared with him! 🙂 Happy Decembert 1st, sweet friends ~ YOU ALL sure add alot of JOY to my days!

tucker-Christmas2010-westie-furbaby-cardI hope December is getting off to a sweet start for you!

Warm Hugs!

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  • Jan Brown - December 2, 2015 - 10:58 am

    Ann Margaret, I hope you are doing good. I think about your family daily an continue to pray for you.ReplyCancel

    • amteatime - December 13, 2015 - 2:12 pm

      Jan, thank you so much for your sweet thoughts and prayers. They are so appreciated and needed ~ we miss our sweet Kaylee so very much. I am so happy you stopped by my blog and hope you’ll keep visiting…I absolutely loved hearing from you! Hugs!ReplyCancel

And there came a time when their sails began to blow in a different way, and it was almost as though she heard God say ~ “My work for you and with you here is done for now ~ I have a new adventure awaiting you.”

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It’s interesting how our hearts can change and see opportunities in a different light when we truly feel God is nudging us in a particular direction.  We absolutely love living at the beach.  It is the first place we have both truly loved so very much out of all the places we’ve lived.  It’s a place that has always held sweet memories of summers here with our families, day trips as a couple when we lived just a few hours away, and then, relaxing vacations when we visited home from faraway countries.  In the past four years it has been an anchor to our souls, filled our hearts with hope and inspiration, and been the most beautiful entertainment we could ever hope for.  Enjoying sunsets and long days on the beach are some of our favorite things to do! If you have ever passed me on the sidewalk as I’m walking Cooper and stopped to chat a bit about our time here, you would most likely have heard me saying, “I don’t ever want to leave the beach…we love living here!”  However, in my heart I always knew we might not stay here forever…yes, forever sounds a bit strange to this chick whom is used to fluffing a new nest every few years or so.  And, I must admit that I do sometimes find my heart feeling ready for a change.  We both started feeling that itch just a tiny bit several months ago.  It was ever so slight to begin with, and then, as most things do, it became a little more persistent over time…and, then, a wee bit more.  We ignored it for awhile and didn’t even really chat about it with each other.  As time went on, we found ourselves talking about maybe it was getting time for a change…”let’s just think on it” we would say.

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We have been renting our home here…a beautiful Mediterranean style home with a lovely pond in the back that we just love…just across the street from the beach.  We initially chose to rent because we wanted to see which area we liked the best.  The owners of the home were happy to keep renting each year so we did that, as we had just not found what we were looking for in terms of purchasing…and, after a couple of years we weren’t sure we wanted to…and, we truly love the spot right where we are.  This past October the first owners sold the home to their friends (yes, the option had been available for us to purchase, but we were not interested in doing so).  The new owners were happy for us to continue renting.  Once we were a few months out from the renewal of the lease, I decided to talk with them to see what their plans were moving forward, as I knew they were going to want to move in at some point.  They had decided they would like to at the end of this year’s lease.  So, we started looking at homes in the area, and I began to get very busy with the mission of finding a new beach house for us.  During this time that “itch” I mentioned above seemed to get a bit stronger.  We talked alot about our thoughts and plans and whether or not the pieces of the puzzle were coming together for a new adventure.  It certainly seemed as though they might be!  We later had to admit it was interesting the owners wanted to move in this year ~ how things just seemed to start taking shape for a new journey…we would have continued to rent again since we do love this home and its location.  Hmm…time to look for a new nest ~ and perhaps, a new spot on the map to call home!

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We have both worked from home while living here.  Yes, John has travelled with his job for meetings and such, and I have often enjoyed being his traveling companion on these trips.  There was definitely a learning curve about how to make our “working from home” setup function in the best way for both of us.  We often laugh now as we look back on those first days in our “home office” ~ we had to set some boundaries!  LOL  We learned alot though…about each other, ourselves, and the dedication it takes to making a home office work.  I had been used to this, but this was the first time John had worked from home.  It was an adventure for sure in the beginning and has made for lots of good stories and laughs!  🙂  We made it work, and it has worked really good…and, we’ve truly enjoyed working together!  We wouldn’t take anything for this opportunity to experience life together in the “workforce”…just another beautiful and fun experience to add to our marriage journey!

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There is an interesting camaraderie that exists in office settings, especially in those where many of the employees are prior military.  Although John enjoys working from home, there are times when he also misses some things about going into the office each day. It was during the time we were looking for a new home here at the beach that he was offered a promotion.  And, yes, this promotion would be at his office in Alexandria, Virginia.  We did a lot of talking, praying, and sharing of thoughts and ideas about this opportunity.  We looked at all the pros and cons, researched, made lists, and did more talking.  Even though we were excited about his promotion, we didn’t want to jump into a decision without giving it much thought.  After all, we do love living here.  We tried to be quiet and LISTEN…listen for any message or sign God might be trying to speak to us or show us.  And, it seemed as the days passed, He did just that.  We prayed together about our decision, asking for His guidance.

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I can’t help but smile now as I think back on some of those days. I tried to lean into staying here at times, focusing on some of the benefits/pros, but it’s interesting to think back to those moments, as I realize I always had a voice inside of me identifying that was what I kinda felt I needed to do.  I think I wanted to bring up any possible reason to stay here so we were sure to NOT overlook something. It would be a big move if we chose to leave…emotionally and physically.  Not that this would be as big as some we have been through…we did live in the Middle East, for goodness sake! I even have a little piece of paper on which I wrote, “I don’t want to move.”  I was making journaling notes and had jotted this down. {Makes me smile to think back to this now.}  It was only a couple of weeks later when my heart was no longer identifying with those words.  In those weeks my heart and soul decided to be true to its calling.  The calling had been there for some time, but I don’t think I would have ever spoken words of thinking it was time to leave this amazing place.  There is soooo much I love about it here…we love about it.  Who would want to leave paradise?!! But, I must tell you, there can come a time when you can truly feel God nudging you on to a new journey.  This was one of those times.  And, honestly, when I allowed myself to let go…to stop holding onto what we have here…well, that’s when I really began to smile and feel excited about this new opportunity God had provided for us.  And, that’s when my shoulders began to relax, the tension eased, and I realized it was time for change.  And, I also reminded myself that our time here will always be a part of our hearts…a huge part…the memories, the growth, the amazing inspiration.

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We had made several trips to Alexandria during the spring and early summer, and during two of them I distinctly remember feeling a bit frustrated…with the traffic, area, and such.  I was just so ready to get home.  I remember thinking I was so happy we didn’t live there.  Fast forward to only a couple of trips later…I enjoyed my walks in Old Town snapping pics as I always love to do during our visits there and ran into the most friendly people along my strolls.  Or, I walked into a few shops, and the owners or employees recognized me right away and spoke of how happy they were to see me again.  I truly believe these were a few God moments…He was allowing me to see the beauty, the friendliness, the warmth that I have always loved about Old Town…He was allowing me to see it up close and personal.  And, yes, those moments overshadowed the other times where I had found myself frustrated.  It may not sound like much as you read it here, but I assure you it was so very noticeable to me.  I could see God working in my heart and soul…laying the groundwork, so to speak.  And, I will tell you this…there is nothing that makes me happier and makes me feel more blessed than when I can see and hear God speaking in my life! I miss it many times, I’m sure, but when I do catch it…well, by golly, I kinda like to share it with you!

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So, how in the world does one decide to leave the beach…how does one know when it’s time for a new adventure?  Well, you do a lot of praying, asking for God’s will to be obvious to you, and asking for His guidance along the way…for the ability to SEE and HEAR His messages.  And, that’s just what we did.  There were moments of just feeling as though we weren’t sure what we needed to do, times of just having to say, “Let’s take a break and talk about it later”, and lots of blessings spoken before dinner with each of us asking for Him to show us His will for us in this decision.  And, we truly feel that we did hear Him, we saw messages He left for us along the way, and He helped us to grow together even more in our friendship and marriage, as we were each thoughtful about the other’s feelings, thoughts, ideas, and concerns.  As I look back now, I see such beautiful growth that took place.  That’s the thing about marriage and being with your best friend…in the tough moments, making difficult decisions, choosing paths, and finding your way…we have this opportunity to grow even closer.  Just as I said many, many years ago in a poem I wrote for John ~ “looking up to find him smiling down at me…my best friend…that’s the best feeling in the world”!  He is such a blessing in my life! *So funny I mention this here because after I wrote this I was out in the garage later that afternoon going through things.  I came across the poem and photo I had given to John with these very words…it was packed up in a box.  Yes, I save everything! Needless to say, I think I need to make sure it gets unpacked in the new house! He agrees!

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So, yes, guess what??  We’re moving to Alexandria, Virginia!!  LOL  Bet, you hadn’t figured that out already!  Well, sorry for the long presentation, but well, I just needed to share all the fun details with you first!  And, the best part ~ we are so very excited about this new adventure!  Yes, we will absolutely miss the beach for so many reasons; it has the most special place in our hearts! And, we will truly miss being close to family.  We are only a 3 hour drive to my side of the family, and we have been able to enjoy seeing John’s parents more while living here.  I feel very blessed to have been in this beautiful spot during the last four years…I was close by when my mom was so sick, when my granny passed away, Tucker passed away here…and, we’ve been able to celebrate birthdays together, mother’s and father’s day, special events, and so many sweet moments.  I truly believe we have been here for this length of time for so many reasons…God has done much work in us and with us and others. So, I assure you, my heart is a bit heavy with thoughts of not getting to see everyone as much, but I know there will be lots of phone chats, face timing, and fun times together in new ways.

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Things are moving right along ~ we closed on our beautiful new home in Old Town Alexandria last week!  Yes, we are going to live right in the heart of Old Town!  When we left the area several years ago, we always said we would love to live in the heart of Old Town if we ever went back.  We will be able to walk to the river (that was quite a necessary feature…this mermaid needs water close by!), cute cafes and restaurants, shops, and so much more!

john-me-home-closing-aug42105-alexandriaSo, this is what I’ve been up to, and the next week will find me busier than a bee {oh, my, the past couple of months have been this way though!} as we are preparing for the movers to arrive on August 24th! Stay tuned ~ I’ll be sharing pics and thoughts each day about our move so I hope you’ll come on this journey with me!  Be sure to grab your cute boots though ~ it is quite possible we may just have to toss our flip flops in the closet after fall! And, speaking of fall ~ oh, my…the art, the stories, tons of creativity straight from my heart, “Kisses from Cooper”, and so much more will be blooming from my new studio!   And, I am so excited to share it all with YOU! Thank you for continuing to travel this journey with me ~ thank you for your beautiful and thoughtful messages about my art, photography, and pieces of my heart I share.  My hope continues to be that I can add a dose of SUNSHINE and JOY to your days in some little way!

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Hugs to you ~ and, thank you for reading this little book of an announcement!  🙂

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  • Anne - August 14, 2015 - 2:28 pm

    I can’t imagine leaving your beautiful home.But I totally understand that you have to follow your heart. God is in control and he has big plans for you. I wish you and your husband all the happiness in the world, in your new beautiful home. We will be making a big change in three years. I am hoping that it’s in God’s will that we make it to Florida. I can’t take the long winters here any longer. But we will see 😉

    xx
    AnneReplyCancel

  • Nancy Peevey - August 15, 2015 - 11:41 am

    Congratulations on your soon to be new home in Virginia! You take such gorgeous pictures that I’m looking forward to seeing your new nest, Old Town, etc. Prayer is how I got to California! It was the first move for me, and I grieved for a year. It took five years to feel at home out here. You and John have moved a lot, and both are following God’s lead. Yes, I’m very happy for you both and Cooper. I can’t wait to see what God has in store for your family. You have my love and prayers as you walk out of one door, and into another. xoxoReplyCancel

  • Cindy - August 15, 2015 - 10:53 pm

    Such exciting BIG news!!! I can’t believe you are heading back to VA! I get a second chance to meet you now since it didn’t work out 4 years ago. 🙂 I know it will be difficult to leave your FL home, but there are many adventures awaiting you three here! So happy for you! Love this last picture of you two, btw!!ReplyCancel

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