Sunday, July 31, 2011

Highs and Lows

A School in Jinja

School in Uganda is very different than in the U.S. Children have to pay to go. It is relatively cheap by our standards, but it increases the higher the grade level..... and MANY children never get the opportunity to go. Instead, they peddle on the streets, do labor for their food, or are forced into many other things .....that's the low.

The highs? Oh..... So many. First, these children DESIRE to go to school. The ones who get to go, appreciate it!!!! They study hard and make it a priority. In the picture above, teens at the orphanage we are staying at were using their free time to do equations. Yes...... Equations. The kiddo above is Isaac- brilliant at just 17.

Those commercials you see about sponsoring a child for just a few dollars a month are REAL. A few verses have been rolling in my head the whole time I've been in Africa......"whoever sees a person without food or clothes, but does nothing- what good is his faith?" (paraphrased) ..... And "whatever you have done for the least of these, you have done for Me" ........

Here's a "Flo verified" list of ministries that by you giving up one "eat out" night a month , you can feed and send a child to school for a month!

Canaan's Children Home
My Father's House
Sixty Feet
Return Ministries international
Amani Baby Cottage (adoptions)

Please prayerfully consider being a living sacrifice!

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Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Now I know.....

- and once you know, you are held accountable.

I am so sad that I cannot share pictures of the past two days. I've basically been crying for two days ..... And I never cry. To have a teenager beg you to help them go to school ....and knowing they are an orphan with no one to help them..... To hear about their lives and see their eyes light up when they talk about their art skills or love of science (yet knowing they are living in a children's prison with access to none of that) ...... To have tiny, shoeless, diaperless, dirty babies want nothing more than to be held and then to fall asleep immediately on your shoulder out of sheer exhaustion....... To see a child in a prison cell with no hope ..... to know that I am leaving and they know that.

There is and will be no excuse. I have seen.

Please donate to Sixty Feet. Much help is needed.

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Monday, July 25, 2011


Hello from Uganda! You see the preciousness above? These were two 18 month old twins who came to Return Ministries, a community outreach and feeding program. They were malnourished and underweight .... The little girl went into a frenzy upon seeing the bowl of rice and beans.

THAT was yesterday. Today we visited "m1". I'm not allowed to show photos, but all i CAN say is please, please give to Sixty Feet ( www. Sixtyfeet. Org). The Helpers there are truly God's hands and feet.

These children need hope. Today, I learned that hope to an 18 year old boy came in the form of giving him my husband's bible.......he cried.

Immediately he sketched this picture in it ......

He didn't want candy, or clothes.... He just wanted love.

Please give.

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Wednesday, July 20, 2011

My Next Post....

...will be from Kampala - the capital city of Uganda.

It's here.

Tuesday, July 19, 2011


Yesterday, my sister and I drove (with our four little girls) to visit my dad who lives two hours away. It had been a while since we'd visited...and by a while, I mean a while. Our dad has always driven to us, therefore the vice versa didn't happen much.

After spending a day with my 72-year old dad (who's in great shape, btw!), I came away with a mixture of feelings. Satisfied - because he was still active & busy. Sadness - because....there were no 'messes' .

I look at the photo above. The place where all my people love to throw their flops/shoes/whateverneedstostayoutside. I usually sigh when I see it's a mess. Dirty glasses & dishes in the sink - a mess. Wet towels on the floor when they should be hanging - a mess. Endless fingerprints on our glass doors - a mess.

I'm sure my dad misses those messes. The messes from activity and kiddos. From husbands and wives. From life that goes by way too quick.

I leave for Africa in one day. If you've noticed, I haven't blogged much. Instead, I've tried to focus on my own 'messes'. Making sure I don't miss one opportunity. Giving extra hugs and kisses. Reading that extra book. Laughing at my potty-training daughter on the toilet saying "Mommy.....look! Apple Juice!"

Oh my.....I love these messes. I do.

Saturday, July 16, 2011

Some Weeks are Fast....

....some weeks are slow. I walked into W&T's today expecting (hoping!) to see another empty booth. Alas, it wasn't. Not this week. Well, some of the "smalls" sold, but the buffets were still there. I keep having to smack won't be every week that furniture flies out of the booth before I can set up a nice display! The ups & downs of retail. : )

On another note, speaking of fast weeks......this week has been going fast. I leave in 4 days. FOUR DAYS to Africa. I must say, my stomach is full of knots. I've never left my girls this long. I've never even been away from the hubs this long......and honestly? I have this dreaded fear that something will happen to me and leave my girls motherless. If I'm being perfectly honest, that's the biggest fear I have.

I should be fearing re-entry. How will I re-enter this "capri-sun sippin' " world of mine when I know there's babies dying of malnutrition & dehydration and I've witnessed it with my own eyes? It will no longer be some sad newstory in Time will be real.

How will I come back to this....

An inspiration picture for my one day master bedroom.

I'm wondering if I'll be able to reconcile the two worlds.......

Friday, July 15, 2011

An Arles Before & After

I really haven't seen many "Arles" paint jobs in the chalk paint world. Is this buttery orange-yellow just too much? Is it hard to work with? Is it best left for the small pieces? I dunno....but it sure makes a difference on this old dresser.

It's a Santa Fe meets Cottage Yellow color....hard to describe. But it IS least I think so.

Two coats of Arles followed by clear wax

Not too distressed this time. Keepin' her classic.

Arles fan! I know just what I want to do with it next....

Thursday, July 14, 2011

Arles It Is & Thank You!

So....Arles it is! This piece really had "blue" written all over it....but my curiousity got me. I just had to know what Arles looked like in person.....

She's coming along.....almost done.

On another note, THANK YOU to Perfectly Imperfect for featuring my dresser in her furniture feature party!

I find it very funny that she's giving me kudos because it was this dresser below that gave me the "uuuh-mah-gahhh" moment.

The Dresser that Inspired Thousands
(photo courtesy of Perfectly Imperfect)

My hubby & I are headed off to Dallas for a summer retreat sans the kiddos! It's one week until I leave for Africa and when I get back, he'll be full-swing into coaching meaning....summer's almost over. Sadness.......

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Kudos My Man!

So "Goin' with the Flo" might have to change it's name to "Goin' with the Boog & Flo". My man got a custom order to create benches for a client (client aka friend, client/'s all the same.) : )

She needed 5 ft benches that are sturdy & strong. Well.....anyone that knows my hubs knows that "sturdy" is his middle name. (Not's Mark. Which is what people actually would call him, if they didn't call him "Boog" - random - I digress.....)

Voila! Good thing she liked it because it was about to go in my booth....

Not bad, my dear!
His woodworking has been a nice complement to what I do.
Marriage & the perks, I guess!

Monday, July 11, 2011

Waiting on the Mailman

I was out. Totally out. I started sweating. Profusely. My eyes were wild....hands jittery.....I had to get some more.... chalk paint, that is! Seriously though, I was totally out. Thanks to the swiftness of Lady Butterbug I got notification that my order should be here tomorrow~

That's great news because I have this little ditty just waitin' to be prettied up. She's a sweet little thing.......I'm excited to try two new colors that I've never used before .....


Duck Egg Blue

Hmmm.....which one?

In the meantime, I swore the I would just relax with my girls. This little one is truly, truly in the 'crackin' me up' stage. She's a hoot. Keeps us all laughing with her dramatics.....her quoting "Ramona & Beezus" lines like a champ.....and yes, she's doing much better potty training. She's actually telling me when she needs to go potty! Something like this....

"Mommy. I need to potty. Get a prize."

Prizes work for this one...

All in good fun!

Sunday, July 10, 2011

Crashing with Goofus & Gallant

Remember those Highlights kids magazines you would read at the dentist office? Well, thanks to a school fundraiser, we have a subscription to "Goofus & Gallant" 's antics every month......sometime Grace will read them & get craft ideas....some doable...some not.

This time, it was a definite do. It was Sunday. I had been crashing all day because of my painting fury this week (I was wore out, ya'll!). It was the first day all summer that our entire family just stayed inside and did nothing. The girls played, I did laundry & napped, Boog read......bliss.

Grace Making Her Project

Cutting is a Chore!
Playing the Watermelon Toss....
which one is Goofus and Gallant?

It's been a nice day.

Saturday, July 9, 2011

The Last of 'Em

This has been the "Week of the Buffets". I've refurbished one buffet a day....working at nights and early, early morning due to the's HOT here in Texas, ya'll! This another Antibes Green. Why another one? Well, the last one sold before I took it to my booth. And practically speaking.....I had just enough paint left to do this size piece. Gotta reorder now....

Buffet Before - More Modern Lines

Buffet After - Much Better Hardware!

Headed to W&T's right now to put these up for sale!

Friday, July 8, 2011

Largest Buffet to Date!

Ladies & Gentlemen.....calling on someone with a big, phat spot to house this piece!

Seriously, this is absolutely the largest buffet I've ever worked on. Whenever I'm painting a piece, I imagine who might buy it & for what far, I've had pieces used as theatre props, store displays, and who knows what else? I love it.

I imagined her sitting inside some boutique....with jewelry & mirrors & lighting shining down on her beauty.........if you want her, she's for sale starting tomorrow at W&T's!

Another contrasting piece -classic stained top & distressed bottom

And of course - she's got LEGS!

Thursday, July 7, 2011

What "Empty" Means

When I enter Winnie & Tulula's and find my booth like this..... Empty. I breathe deep. That quick rush of "somebody liked it!" goes away.......the reality hits that I need to start painting like yesterday to refill. But the ultimate Joy comes from knowing that each sale has helped pay the way for me to fly to Uganda (leaving in 14 days!!!) for two weeks to visit Amazima Ministries, 60 Feet Ministries, Canaan's Home and several other places I probably am not yet prepared to see....My heart is weighing heavy.

Amazing Katie from Amazima

To say I am unprepared is an understatement. Oh....I've got the traveling shoes. The adaptor (gotta blog, right?!). The passport. I'm physically ready, but mentally? Not nearly.

I just wanted you to know, that your support (whether through purchases, donations, prayers, etc.) has helped in ways you'll never know. It gave me confidence to keep on painting......the kids in Uganda may not care about "distressed fabulosity" but they DO care about fresh water, education, and immediate needs. It is in this way, I found I can use that painting hand God gave me to help.

You've also helped "Goin' with the Flo" sponsor a child for a year through Amazima Ministries. We just did that tonight!! One less child going unfed & uneducated for a year......

A sincere thank you.

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