Thursday, October 7, 2010

Life Is Beauty Full

I bought one significant item last month at the Springfield Extravaganza. It was $50, which seemed sort of...unnecessary. Frivolous.

It caught my eye right away, but I couldn't see spending the money, so I walked on. I decided I would eat lunch and if I couldn't stop thinking about it, I would go back. If it was still there, it was meant to be. And hopefully it wouldn't be there. And probably it wouldn't, because it rocked just that hard.

After fish and chips, Jayme walked back with me to check it out and I confess, I was a little nervous.

I was nervous about the money and about the fact that it may be gone. And the fact that it might still be there.

Jaymes agreed that $50 was a chunk of change, but then she said this, "If you love it for fifty days, it will only be a dollar a day!"

Can it be said: Every girl needs a friend like this in her life.

We rounded the corner and there it was and I still wavered. I knew it was something that could easily "inspire" a "replica". But I couldn't get past the fact that the artist was there, in her wrap sweater, under the nylon awning. I loved her art. Not my knock-off version of it. I wanted to honor her art.

Still wavering, Jayme spoke again, "Shannan, you will bless her if you buy that."


She lit up when I walked toward her, cash in hand. I had my picture taken with her and she's just so lovely. I think we would be friends if life allowed for it.

I walk past this so many times a day. And almost every time, my heart nods along. Yep. You got that right. Life is Beauty Full.

Life is beauty full in the way that allows for one hour, all my own. Writing a story at a table for two, my only companions a bowl of white chili and a chocolate dipped strawberry that I nibbled to the quick.

Life is beauty full in such a way that I bought two bags of groceries here today.

I parked right beside this.

I bought buns and pretend Cookie Crisp, 2 avocados and shaving cream, for a special craft tomorrow. Siley helped me carry things. I couldn't have done it without him.

We ate our broiled turkey and provolone subs piled up under a haystack of banana peppers, then we headed out for a 1 mile fitness walk at Calvin's school.

The air was perfection.

(Don't do it!)

Silas was happy, but only for the one mile. Out of his stroller, he was grumpy and pushy and screamy and peevish.

"Peevish". That's how his Korean paperwork described him, and I'm sorry to say that the shoe often fits.

But you know? I'd be peevish, too.

And we're praying love and joy right into his bones. We're carrying him around and giving him snacks and tickling his tummy and pretending to eat his toes and reading him books and rubbing his hairy little back and life is Beauty Full.

This sweet thang? She flew through the kitchen last night on her way to play outside, and yelled out, "I love you! You're a smart sweetheart!" just before the screen door slammed.

I melted right into my butter bowl.

I knew in that moment that she was parroting some of the words she hears every single day and yes, I go to bed far too often feeling like I failed as a Mama in some little way, but right then? I knew I was good.

She twirled around a rotation or two, then left us in the dust for a date with Nana, Papa and her two best pals, Colin and Jack. (I asked her before bed what the volleyball players did and she said (and demonstrated), "They PUSH the ball over the tennis court!")

The rest of the evening was just us and the boys. And these trees, finally spilling their sunshine, smiling from the outside in, blushing gold.

I climbed the Big Hill with Calvin....

And we ran all the way down.

Each step ramped up our momentum and by the time we reached the end, we were both five years old and our hands fit together so well, even in the downhill rush and maybe he didn't say it, but I know he was feeling it:






  1. I feel the same way today, AND I took a picture of a tree. I never take pictures of trees...but it musta've been in the air.
    I like "a smart sweetheart", it has a certain smack to it. I must bring it into my rotation.
    I'm glad you blessed that artist. Wise choice. Sometimes chicken ladies know what's what.

  2. and now I want a chocolate strawberry...

  3. and, I know someone who's peevish. He was born that way...but I like to think that he'll grow out of it, you know, if there's enough fluffy bunnies to cuddle with in the world, and enough thumbs to suck.

  4. My heart melteth into the butter bowl after reading that.

  5. and I think we could be friends if life would allow.

  6. Sweet post girlie. Life is beauty full! So glad you blessed her with that purchase. I love it.

  7. and I think we would be friends too if life would allow.. and I would hang with that OLF girl also!

  8. That sign is Beauty Full, and you have a great blog!!

  9. Not only has your $50 investment made a little corner in your world a little more 'beauty full' but you have brought it into lots and lots of other spaces so that we all can share in this beautiful art.

    Thank you,


  10. You my dear are providing a "beauty full" life for those dear children and you are doing a lovely job of it!! They are blessed to be calling you mommy

  11. I love your new art and am so glad you treated yourself. {We don't do that enough.} It is a memory too, of a great day with friends. I love what your friend said about blessing the artist by buying it. By the way, that soup looks gooood.

  12. I saw something almost just like that when I was in Ohio last month at the Country Living Fair. But I don't think it was the same artist. I really liked it, kept going back to it but in the end left it because I couldn't get it in my suitcase and back to Idaho. I'm glad you got to take one home. :)

  13. Does she have an etsy site or anything! I love it....
    Life is so so good and I love reading about yours! Always inspiring...

  14. Gorgeous post Farmgirl! I so love to hear about your kids and see the photos.
    Hope you all have a fabulous weekend.

  15. loved this post. loved that piece of art you bought. and yes, life is beauty full. amen and amen.

  16. I love the art and I love the way it represents your life right now.

  17. I am so happy you listened to your heart and the voice of your wonderful friend,Jamye. I wasn't there, but I too can see the smile on her face. Peevish, Ha, I know he can be, but Oh,how I love him! And I know God will hear the prayers of his Mama and Daddy and before long all we will see ,will be joy and love oozing out of his bones. Yes, life is beauty FULL!!!!! And you are an amazing Mommy!!!

  18. I love the art too! And, your friend needs to be my bff... I mean, I will forever think of the $1 a day every time I love something.
    Have a great weekend with your people~

  19. You have lovely friends, lovely children, beauty full taste in art, and the perfect words to share them all with us. Thank you.

  20. This was yet again, another great post! I am so glad that you treated yourself to a day with girl friends and a fun reminder to put in your home of how blessed you are! Where did you put that very cool reminder in your house??? Hopefully in a high traffic area, the more you are reminded the better! My reminder to you: YOU are an amazing mom, those babes are soooo blessed to have you in their life, and each day you are making their life so much better! ; )

  21. A wise investment for $50...just think of all your readers assessing their beauty full lives right now....and taking none of it for granted.... think of how that sign will impact your children and their outlook on life as they grow up....nope, no reason for guilt. ;)

  22. This is a beauty full post and Ruby is rockin' those boots!
    Your art is lovely and Jayme is a beauty full friend.

  23. You got it, life is beauty full. Sometimes we just have to slow down and realize it.

    Here's to another beauty full day tomorrow and the next day...and the next...


  24. you are an inspiration. i love your blog. i love your writing. i love your pictures. wow.

  25. crying.
    this makes me feel so full and gushy and wonderful.
    every single part of it.
    thank you Shannan.

  26. Wonderful. And true. Needed a little reminder today. Thanks so much.

  27. I love your new art and I am glad that you spent the money. Imagine the regret you'd feel later because I think you were meant to have it. Great post....

  28. Yes so true...thank you Shannan.

  29. Your words made my heart happy.

  30. Oh my... a long post today! I jusr wanted to say thank you for giving me that adoption information, and I have contacted them!

  31. Do you have any idea how many times I've told my husband that I was going to buy something but couldn't decide and when I went back to get it, it was gone? It's become sort of a joke in our family. So glad your something was there and Jayme said what she said and you wrote about it all. And spending money to bless others--that really should be the test, shouldn't it? I echo Joann and think we should all get together sometime over white chili and chocolate covered strawberries. Beauty full indeed.

  32. How inspiring. I bought a $40 rug at our market last night after walking away and then going back - I felt the girl worked hard to make it, she was very sweet, and I knew it would add cheer to my house.

  33. i am across the country on a month long vacay..{missing IN. glorious fall parade of colors, sitting at my laptop,teary eyed, touched by your words...
    Blessings to you as you continue to revel in HIS beauty...

  34. LOVED reading this -- and I love the artwork. Totally.Get.It. Well done! And that Ruby...

  35. Reading this post was a 'beauty full' way... to start my day!


  36. Indeed it is :) My son told me today I am beauty full & he lobes me. God is good!

  37. I loved every word of this post! I melted too when I read the words your sweet daughter said!

  38. Shannan! This art was on another blog just this morning and was instant love at first sight:

    I just LOVE the story about seeing it, wrestling with the choice to buy, or not to buy, and then blessing the artist and gracing your home with this treasure that you'll surely love for 50 day times a hundred times over, and beyond.

  39. Here's the deal...your home SHOULD reflect the state of your heart. That art work is a piece of that lovely young woman, you could have copied it, but would it have meant as much? It was meant to live in a home that is "beauty full". Well done you.

  40. I love your blog and your farm life. Thanks for sharing these warm and beautiful moments of life ! Greetings from Paris, Britta

  41. Oh, its just so very fitting for you! I'm sure you made her day. Some art can be copied ( I did one today) but especially when you meet the artist you know how important their work is and how special it is to have the real thing!

    I love the pic of you and Calvin a the top of the hill, precious!


  42. What a great reminder! Life IS beauty full.

  43. Well worth the $! Life is beauty it!

  44. reminds me of the song, 'beauty in the world' by Macy Gray. go have a listen...

  45. Darn Shannon, you made me cry...and smile...and stop and appreciate the life and beauty God has given. You're good at that.

  46. I love this post - your life seems BEAUTY FULL indeed!

  47. AAAAAAAAAHHH. This post stung me in the heart. For the following reasons:

    1. I do the exact same leave-it-an-if-you-still-think-about-it-go-back-and-get-it-dance. And art? Art is my weakness. We don't have a lot of cash money laying around but we budget for art. At first I thought you were going to say that you decided you could make it and my heart was breaking. I love LOVE that you returned and bought from the creator. So worth it.

    2. Your description of loving your peevish boy. Oh good stuff, mama.

    3. I knew in that moment that she was parroting some of the words she hears every single day and yes, I go to bed far too often feeling like I failed as a Mama in some little way, but right then? I knew I was good. Yes. The best.

    4. Hill climbing with Calvin. What a lovely combination of words to describe that simple, beauty full experience.

    Happy to have found you. x

  48. Your lovely post brought tears to my eyes again. There is a reason I'm comment number 5o something. You write from the heart...straight to the heart. How many times did I go to bed thinking I didn't measure up only to have a little hand rub my back and pat a few times in reassurance that this mommy mattered. Your little moments remind us all that it's the little things that add up to a wonderful mommy. Blessings sweet soul, Patty

  49. I was oblivious to the heartfelt back and forth you were going through. (Just now remembering that Jen and I were on the hunt for the non-existent Rhubarb Reign booth whilst you and Jayme went back for the goods.) Glad Jaymes (bless her little computer free for the weekend heart) helped push you over the edge. It truly belongs in your home, Farmgirl. Your Beauty Full home.

  50. Just discovered your blog! Your photos are lovely and your words inspiring. But I have to say, as I scrolled down your recent posts admiring your world, you HAD me at periodic table. Well done. I'll be back for sure!

  51. This is my first visit here and I am so blessed by your mad writing skills! This post brought tears to my eyes (which doesn't happen easily). Life is beauty full and so is your blog :). Thanks for sharing your heart with us!

  52. Oh, the running down the hill. How fun, but I know I would tumble and roll!! hahaha.

    life IS beauty full, Shannan. Thank you for reminding me today.

  53. Loved your post yesterday-just what I needed! It inspired me to do my own "Life is Beauty Full" post. Hope your having a beauty full weekend.

  54. You have a gift! You are an artist with your words. I feel in my heart so many of the things your write about and would never be able to express them that way you do with the written word. I am so glad I found your blog. I read all your posts and marvel at how you can write. You have made my world a nicer place. Thank you!

    Erin T

  55. Life appears so much brighter through your eyes . You encourage and inspire. God has blessed you with words said well :)

  56. "You're a smart sweetheart!" Spectacular.

    And I completely understand about honoring someone's art. That's why I can't go to the Saturday morning market around here too often. Especially when the pottery vendors are displaying their gorgeous wares. I'm a sucker for pottery.

    I'm glad you had a "beauty full" day.

  57. This post blessed me more than you will ever know. :-)

  58. Your description
    of emotions while
    deciding about the
    purchase of this
    sweet art piece is
    exactly what I go
    through, time and again.
    Sooo glad that you
    listened to your heart;
    you won't regret it.
    Wish the artist was
    on Etsy ~ I'd totally
    buy this, too!
    xx Suzanne
    PS: Running down a hill...
    with a little one...

  59. that post was just a bit bowl of awesomesauce! :)

    life is beauty full, indeed!

  60. I smile when I think of that piece of art in your home! I saw that last month at the fall festival in Zionsville. I admired the girl's art and found myself wondering if I could recreate some of what she did. I love how she makes beauty from reclaimed artifacts. Life is indeed Beauty Full....How blessed we are!

  61. I sat in a booth this past weekend...I'll sit in one again this coming weekend. Trust me, you purchasing that art, it blessed the artist's socks off! Its a silly thing, but it validates the WHY of WHY am I so driven to do this thing, even if its just this thing for a season.
    Thank you! $50 well WELL spent!

  62. When did your tiny little children gown so tall!! Make them STOP!!

  63. life is beauty full...that is a really cool sign and you only have to look as far as your pictures to see that...very cool post, becuase it is....

  64. This post and your whole blog are truly beauty
    full! :-)

  65. oh girl...

    i'm crying. and laughing. how i love the sign! i need one. and $50 is a steal of a deal, i say. i LOVE "smart sweetheart." and silas' hairy back :) and his peevishness, and how you're loving it away. and the running down the hill. you are beauty full, friend.