stirred up.

I'm not sure why I am ever surprised by what the Word of God can stir within a person - but I'm always amazed.  It's like this reminder of His gracious & good work He is doing in each of us.
I think it's one of the reasons I enjoy doing these markets.

Sure, there are times when it is a little bit hard to stand in front of the work I have painted - like yesterday, a nice young woman picked up something I made with my hands, showed it to her mother & her mother scrunched up her face, shook her head, they put it down & walked away.
And there are times when individuals like to tell me what they don't like about the Bible.
And that doesn't happen often, but it has happened.
And it's OK.  Good, even.

And so painting, for me, & putting in front of people, has brought to light some kinks in my armor.
That desire to be approved of creeps up & into my heart during this time of year.
It's a vulnerable thing to do - for anyone who makes things or serves dinner for people or anything that you personally produce - it's a thing that leaves, at least it leaves me, feeling exposed.
But the cool thing about the Word is that while I am painting, I am being covered with reminder after reminder of who He is.
And who I am because of Him.
"Love never fails"
"Be beautiful inside"
"Let the God of peace fill you with hope & love"
And then I'm am able to give it away a little bit easier.

I have the sweetest conversations with people at these markets....
not because I am super friendly, because, well, my friendliness can be inconsistent, especially when I am working on several 4 hour sleep nights in a row.
But so often, someone picks up a piece.  Reads the words....which are not my words.....& sometimes they cry.  And I am overwhelmed......because it's not ever the paint applied to the piece that has driven them to be emotional.  It's always the Word.
The Word stirring something in that person's heart.
It's the presence of God Himself in their life.
And I get to see that.
And that's awesome.

It's been quite a few weeks around here.
I didn't leave room for anything out of the ordinary to happen.
And several out of the ordinaries did happen.
So, I'm sleepy.  And that's a lie, I guess.....I'm flat smack down exhausted.

The Garden Market proved again to be one of the most encouraging days of my whole year.  The vendors & the shoppers always bless my socks off.  It's often like being in a room full of cheerleaders who are cheering for one another & I get to be a part of that party.
And the Northside Market ended today.
Sweet people in both places & I loved being a part of both.
We raised some money for Takes A Whole Village & I always love that.  And I'm thankful to you for making that happen.

And I will be on my official break through the New Year!!!!  Except, of course, for those orders that I have outstanding...they are ON THE WAY!!!  Promise :).

So, thanks to all of you for showing up & encouraging me this season.  It's an amazing kind of overwhelming & I am so very grateful.

Enjoy your Thanksgiving....



Painting has been the theme around here.
And that's fun for me.
It's the one time of the year that I really dive in fully & just paint.   A whole lot.
The garden market was A-mazing.
I Loooove the size of it & the quality of the vendors.
It was simply great!
And I am looking forward to my last market of the year this weekend at Northside Methodist.
And then I am looking forward to taking my time off.....to fully engage & enjoy this season with family.
But until then.....I can guarantee you that i either have a paint brush in my hand or there is at least paint all over my hands.  & probably my arms.  And if you see it on my face I do hope that you'll let me know so I can wash it off.
Alrighty.....time for bed.


Mercy Market

I got to go to a market in Vidalia, GA with 2 great ladies.  Jennifer Tanksley paints the birds & the trees that so many of you are big fans of & Christina Leerssen of Louisel Handmade makes headbands that my big girl & many of her friends have collected over the years.
I had a great time traveling & having uninterrupted visiting time with other creative women & enjoyed seeing Vidalia, GA as well as a really good friend that I haven't seen in AGES!  We went for the Mercy Guild Market which is helping to raise money for a hospital to serve those who don't have insurance.  A sweet group of women coming around a sweet mission - I enjoy knowing we played a small part in their efforts.
It was crazy to set up a booth with several other people but I really loved the 'gift shop' feel of it.
I hope to do it again soon!!



Well. I'm painting.
I wish I could share in great detail what this year has been for me, personally, as well as for my family. God has us all on a journey & He has reminded me of that in great detail this year in particular.
He sat me down in 1 Corinthians for a good long time.....& it is changing me from the inside out. We had a couple of deaths in our family this year & at one of those funerals they read from 1 Corinthians 13.
The love verses.
Which you usually hear at weddings.
Not funerals.
And the words stung.

If I speak in the tongues of men and of angels, but have not love, I am a noisy gong or a clanging cymbal. And if I have prophetic powers, and understand all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have all faith, so as to remove mountains, but have not love, I am nothing. If I give away all I have, and if I deliver up my body to be burned, but have not love, I gain nothing.

I grieve over those words.
Knowing that I had not loved her well.
So convicted. So guilty & rightly convicted of being nothing more than a clanging cymbal.

And so I painted.
Like a mad & crazy woman I painted & couldn't stop.
I cried & shoo-ed the husband & the children while I processed all of this hurt inside of me.
And all I could paint was 1 Corinthians 13.
Pieces of it here & there. Coming face to face with my guilt & pain & regret.
And then He showed me so clearly the words that come next.

Love is patient and kind; love does not envy or boast; it is not arrogant or rude. It does not insist on its own way; it is not irritable or resentful; it does not rejoice at wrongdoing, but rejoices with the truth. Love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things.
Love never ends.

His love is so good. It's a wonder He doesn't strike us all down for the way we represent Him sometimes. Knowing God through the lenses of love changes everything. And I know I'll never be the same after having to deal with the pain of not loving her well....of not painting a better picture of a God who is so full of love & mercy & patience & kindness & hope.

So. It has been a journey. And it will continue to be a journey.
I hope.
If you check out the shop you'll see some hearts.
It's where I am.
Hearts & love & hope & faith & a lotta hearts. I don't think you can have too many hearts. And I'm certain you can't have too much love.
The Neema Shop still has some awesome changes coming her way & I can't wait to keep you posted, but in the meantime, I'll be posting things for sale in the shop as they happen.



These are some sweet boards for some new people brought into the world! It's so much fun to feel like I am celebrating their births from afar! Like I'm in on all the fun & they just don't know it. I love praying for these littles as I paint......I hope these words are written on their little hearts as they learn how very big God's love is for them.