Monday, February 15, 2010

Valentine Vignettes (And Giveaway Winner!!)

It's 10:00 p.m. here in the Eastern time zone, so I have exactly 2 hours to post the winner of the Giveaway and still keep my word to post today : ) !!

But first, I'll show you a little peek into our Valentine's Day.

Piped chocolate hearts ready to be popped into the freezer:

So that even strawberry jello can look festive:

The Valentine I made for the Man of the House:

Favorite pink tulips for the lunch table:

A Valentine's place setting:

Youngest Daughter's handmade cards for her friends:

Aaah, yes. And therein lies the beauty of blogging. I can show you all my sweet, romantic, happy pictures.

And I don't have to show or tell you that I had to get up at 6:00 a.m. Sunday morning to get the bathrooms and kitchens company-presentable. Or that I completely forgot to buy napkins for dinner and when I mentioned that we had no napkins to my sophisticated dinner guest all the children chirped up, "But Mom, we never have napkins for dinner!" I also don't have to show or tell you that I had to stop at the grocery store on the way back from church because the entire household had run . out . of . toilet . paper! Or that the Man of the House and I had words . . . words the night before Valentine's Day . . . that sacred day of all that is loving and sweet and tender. Not nice words.

Nope, I don't need to show you all of that. I can just show you the sweetness and light and beauty and romance.

But of course you know the messy and the imperfect and the struggle are there. Just like at your house : ) !

That's where we all are. Cleaning the messes . . . enjoying the flowers . . . speaking the truth in love . . . making chocolate hearts . . . letting love cover faults . . . gluing on sparkles and glitter and sweet sentiments . . . hurrying to buy toilet paper before the guests arrive . . . receiving warm hugs and kisses . . . living with imperfection.

And that's where the joy is. Not just enduring or slogging through or muddling along but living! Always and only with His grace . . . always and only!

And now for the winner! The Random Number Generator tells me it's #5, which is

Check out Sue's blog. It's beautiful! Send me your address, Sue, and the package will be on its way.

Thanks so much to all of you for participating! Here's to another fun year!


  1. Shelley, what an exciting giveaway ! ! !
    Enjoyed all the anticipation !
    Love your 'real life' blog with a little sweetness and light thrown in. ; * )
    And, of course, congrats to Sue.
    Hugs to all,

  2. Shelley, OH YIPPEE SKIPEE, that's my name! Lucky, lucky me! I'm going through my google reader and oohing and ahhing over your creative jello treats on those wonderful cream plates I was admiring, and loving the handmade Valentine cards.......and then my name. Thank you so much!!! xo Sue

  3. Congrats Sue!! Looks like you had a yummy, wonderful Valentines there Shelley....well done :)

  4. I loved seeing the "good" parts of your Valentine's Day and hearing about the "normal" parts. We had a good one, but there were some moments (or hours) of not-so-happy moments thrown in there. That is just life.

    Congrats to your giveaway winner. And, I LOVE those piped chocolate hearts. And the cards your daughter made - so pretty.

  5. Thanks for sharing life as it really is -- the joys and the frustrations -- what happens behind all the pretty pictures that we post on our blogs. The jello definitely comes across as a specialty dessert with those chocolate hearts on top : )

  6. Looks beautiful! I would love to have a bite of those chocolate hearts!

  7. I absolutely adore the hearts for the jello. How special. I loved hearing it all...even though it is my first time visiting your blog...I loved hearing the normal too. What sweet blessings normal really is.