Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Another year gone!

As Christmas fast approaches and the year is nearing it's end, I tend to go into 'reflective' mode. My 'day job' is over for the year which gives me more time to ponder and wonder what is in store for the year to come. So many people are flat out right now, getting the shopping finished, meals prepared and it's panic, rush, panic, rush all the way! I guess its my personality but when things get that way for me I sort of close down and go into hybernation!

Our Christmas is low key, last weekend we had a meal with my inlaws, as we will be away visiting my brother in the Bay of Islands for Christmas. (Thats about 3 hours north of us in the Northern part of New Zealand). Presents are minimal, my gifts are having my son Jordan back from his studies in the South Island, seeing my daughter Robyn so filled with joy at her recent escapades in Peru and Bolivia, and watching my youngest Rosie delelop her art skills  - (she won high distinction for art at school prizegiving this year! Shameless boasting, I know) Oh, and the nativity set above is a gift Robyn brought back from Bolivia that the girls at the orphanage made. I love it!

So as I look back on the past year, I see some happy times, some sad times, but all of these as blessed times. I do believe that we need to give thanks in all circumstances. For many, we have unanswered questions, but trust is the key. Knowing that God is in control and is leading us though our trials, makes all the difference. I'd like to wish you all a blessed Christmas and heartfelt thanks to my customers who give me yet another reason to create! I thought I'd leave you with a few of my memories and things I am so thankful for.

For my beautiful family, their faith and their love for each other (Jordan and Robyn pictured here right after their baptism at our local beach)

Not forgetting the pooch ofcourse.

For witnessing the coming true of dreams, in both my own and my childrens life
For the priviledge of being free to create
For my amazing trip to Fiji where I was blessed beyond words

For holiday memories
For living on the doorstep of one of the most lovely beaches ever (ok - I am biased)

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Rosie's gift

A couple of weeks ago I had my birthday and I have been wanting to show you the gorgeous gift my daughter (11yrs) made me. Yes, it is the decoupaged wooden cross above which she made as a school project, brought it home and kept out of my sight for a couple of months, waiting patiently for my birthday to arrive. She specially chose pictures that she knew i would love eg, horses, cats, tasteful decor etc. I was blown away, especially with the precious mummy message she wrote on the back. Am I biased or is it really amazing? 
And while we are focused on Rosie, take a look at these cute Christmas origami flowers she has made. She is definitely one for detail and takes such care in her creations. I think she just might be able to make a little pocket money out of them (they're listed in my etsy shop if anyone's interested!) They look great hung on the christmas tree or strung together as a garland!

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

More Fiji Photos

As promised, here is a selection of some of the scenery photos I took whilst on my Fiji missions trip. I get kind of carried away when I have a camera in my hand, hence the overabundance of coconut palms and beachy shots. I also have a new love: Tropical plants! They are so amazingly beautiful. I hope you enjoy browsing these. To see more photos you can pop over to my Flikr page. To read more about my time in Fiji, you can check out this post.



Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Fiji update - Just blessed!

Have you ever experienced a time when you set out to be a blessing to someone and ended up being blessed out of your socks yourself? Well, that pretty much sums up my experience of my recent trip to Fiji. I blogged a couple of weeks ago about how my dream of teaching art to underprivileged kids was coming true. It is hard to put into words how my time there has opened my eyes to so many things. Not only is Fiji a beautiful country, the people there are just as beautiful! So happy, though they don't have much. So relaxed and content. The children we taught art to were so receptive and eager to learn, well behaved and respectful. My heart just melted when I saw their big smiles after completing a painting and hearing " this is a happy day in my life".
At the Christian camp we stayed at, I got to know the Fijian staff well, sharing many laughs and special moments, and needless to say, many tears on our departure. They showed us around Suva (the capital) and took us on a fabulous mountain walk to a waterfall only the locals know about. What a priviledge! And the depth of their faith is admirable. They trust in God with an unwaivering faith, knowing that He will provide.
The Fijian people have so much for us to learn. To live simple lives, day by day and not worry about the future but just enjoy today. Even the stray dogs were laid back. One dog used to follow us down to the beach everyday and wade around in the shallows looking for fish! Every day, after our hot day of teaching, we would relax with a swim which was bliss!
Below is a quick snapshot of my time there. For more photos, especially scenery shots that you know I can never resist, come over to my Flikr page

 Learning some drawing skills.

Combined effort in poster making.

Their singing was out of this world!

Some focused teenage students

But they were never short of a laugh!


Proud of their work!

We were treated to some dancing on our last day.

And presented with a lei.

Next week I'll post some of my scenery and food market shots.

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Do you have a dream?

I'd like to share with you some exciting happenings I have encountered over the past couple of months. The first was when a group of friends and I sat down together and decided to put our dreams down on paper - a visual representation of the direction we saw ourselves to be heading. It's not something I find myself thinking about much, what with busy schedules and hectic deadlines, it leaves little time for reflective thought. So here I was, with a blank sheet of paper in front of me, wondering what on earth I was going to fll it with. But, you know, when you stop and wait and listen, God reveals things that are buried deep down within you. The desires of your heart that you were not even conciously aware of. I started thinking of my passions, what I love to do and how I would love to share them with others, especially those that would not normally have the opportunuty within their grasp. I started cutting images out of magazines and put together this collage of my dreams.

I want to do art. I want to share it with others. I want to enable those that do not have the opportunity to do art - where ever they may be. I want to point them towards their Creator and for them to know that they are creative beings, made in His image and loved beyond any kind of earthly love they could imagine.
And then about a month ago, an amazing thing happened. Another friend of mine, happened to mention to me that she was looking for some more people to join her and others on a missions trip to Fiji where the focus was to take art into the schools there! Well, my heart started beating fast - I knew this was for me. Teaching children from ages 5 right up to 18, who have never even had the opportunity to hold a paint brush before makes my heart skip! After nervously mentioning it to my husband and expecting a 'no' due to all the obstacles that loomed, I was delighted when he said 'ofcourse, and I'll come with you"! And by the way, all those obstacles are slowly disappearing - things are falling into place and we are well on our way to raising the funds to get there. So forgive me if over the next three weeks, I can't contain myself and get carried away with the excitement of this all. We leave on the 8th of October and will be away for 2 weeks.
Oh, and did I mention that my 19yr old son Jordan has just got back from a missions trip of his own. He went to Fiji too but with a group from the university he attends. And my 18yr old daughter Robyn  is off to spend 2 weeks helping out in a Bolivian orphanage in November. Do I see a pattern here?

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

The Eagle

Below is a devotion that I gave at the school I work at. Some of my online friends have asked that I show it to them, so what better place than my blog. I have also included the painting I was inspired to create. Hope you like it!

One of my favorite symbols in the Bible is the eagle. An incredible creation of God that He describes in an incredible way for us.

Did you know that we were made to fly? To fly like an eagle? I am not suggesting that we should all have wings growing out of our backs. But remember yourself as a child. Was not one of your longings to be able to fly, to lift off and soar like a bird? It's our longing for freedom...

Isaiah 40:31, "They that wait upon the Lord shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings like eagles; they shall run, and not be weary; and they shall walk, and not faint."
The "Overcoming" this scripture talks about, gives us a picture of how we are designed to live. It means freedom from self, freedom from our circumstances and freedom from others' responses. Our souls were made to live in the upper atmosphere. Our eyes were made to look down from these heavenly heights. Trials assume a very different aspect when looked down on from above. Our soul is powerless to overcome trials, sorrows and temptations on the earthly plane. What seems like an impassable wall on it's own level, becomes an insignificant line when viewed from heavenly places. When the soul has mounted on wings into the clear atmosphere of God's presence, these troubles will lose their power to harm or distress us.
Scripture often refers to the eagle as a symbol of the renewing process. Psalm 103:5 says that "our youth will be renewed like the eagle." The eagle is the only bird whose whole physical strength is literally renewed after each molting season. In other words, only after the eagle has "put off" his old feathers, so to speak, does he actually receive "new" physical strength to soar above his enemies."Youth" here in this scripture, could be understood as the "original image" that God created us to have - His Love, His Wisdom and His Power. As we renew our minds, just as the eagle's feathers are renewed, we will receive his strength and be transformed back into God's image, which is what God intended for us all along.
Another reason I think God uses the eagle as a symbol of our renewal and transformation is because the eagle again comes from the only bird family that has "telescopic sight," a kind of "zoom-in” focus lens. An eagle can search out objects literally miles away (indistinguishable to the human eye). They can see a rabbit from over a mile away. This, of course, increases their ability to judge and discern the true situation.
It's the same with us. Our minds, when renewed by God's Spirit, have the same supernatural ability. We are able to judge, discern and pick up things that the natural eye (natural mind) would never be able to see or understand. We are given the supernatural wisdom and ability to discern the true situation and see everything that happens to us from God's vantage point.
It is a blessing that God arranges things in our lives that teach us to fly like the eagle. One such way is seen in Deuteronomy 32:11 where it says: like an eagle that stirs up its nest and hovers over its young, that spreads its wings to catch them and carries them aloft.

When the mother eagle feels they are ready, she teaches her young ones to fly by stirring up the nest and making it so uncomfortable that they are forced to leave it and commit themselves to the unknown world of the air outside. They of course resist it because of the fear of the unknown, but they must put their trust in their mother as they take their first leap of faith. The mother spreads her wings to catch them and carries them aloft should they need it. Once airborne, they realize what they were born to do. And just so God does with us. He stirs up our nest or uncomfortable situation, and pushes us over the edge - forcing us to fly – exactly what we were born to do. And once airborne we look down from Gods perspective, and find ourselves in a peaceful resting place and able to see things as they truly are. And so with this in mind, we can accept with thankfulness, every trial that compels us to use our wings, growing them strong and fit for the highest flying, whilst being transformed and renewed by Gods mighty power.

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

I'm a blessed mother!

When a 19 year old son gives a mum a card full of reasons why she is so special to him, plus a drawing he's done specifically because he knows she loves art, it makes her heart melt!

And when her daughters don't let her get up before serving her breakfast in bed (pancakes and coffee), knowing that she loves to be treated this way, she is awestruck at how blessed she is to have such treasures in her life. 


My 18 year old daughter asked me on Sunday, what I like most about having children and it really got me thinking. There were some cute and funny ideas I came up with straight away, like, having someone to cuddle, someone to laugh with, someone to test my patience with etc. But the more I thought about it, the more I realised that there is one thing that beats them all. It is something basic that every human being needs and thrives on: To love and be loved - unconditionally. My children are the object of my love - something (or someone) to pour out my love on, which is what I was created to do. I remember giving birth to my son, my firstborn and being overwhelmed by the love I felt when I held him in my arms  - the kind of love I had never known before. I can only explain it as a miniscule version of how God must feel about us - the object of His love.

I know they look a bit cold, but this is my brood, right after the oldest two chose to be baptised at our local beach back in January.

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

In case you had any doubts....

This week I thought I'd list some feedback I have had from customers. Its always good to know that what I am creating is appreciated by others. That is part of what drives me to create. The great thing about positive feedback is that it puts prospective buyers (like you!) at ease too!
If you have time, I would also appreciate comments on what you love best in my shop. This will help me focus on whats important to my customers! Thanks and enjoy!!

Beautiful!! I am overjoyed!! These were customized with my shop name on them -even color coordinated with the graphics and flower photos on each box! They are just lovely - Jocelyn is such a joy to work with - highly professional, friendly and so very gifted! My highest recommendation to this seller!! She has such a lovely selection of items in her shop - please have a look!! You will be exceedingly please with any purchase from her !! Thank you so much Jocelyn! A++++++

Positively stunning. More beautiful than your wonderful photos portrayed. I am over the moon excited. They are already framed in a triple frame and hung on the wall. Well packaged for the trip across the pond. Thank you so much.
Autumn Splendour Photo paintings

I don't even know how to adequately describe these beautiful, beautiful and extraordinarily unique cards. They are simply each a work of art. The photos themselves are collectible - they are that lovely - and the cards just add to the "collectibility" of her artwork. These are not just any cards - they are each hand crafted and signed. In addition - they are not printed - they are INDIVIDUALLY hand made - each photo is cut to a specific size, and a beautiful coordinating mat is cut, then both are artistically and beautifully placed on the white card. Just lovely - more than a card - they are small art gifts to give or keep - and are frameable as well. Uniquely lovely - they arrived with a satin ribbon neatly tied, with the lovely logo tag of her shop - these are so wonderful to give as gifts, or for yourself. My highest recommendation to NewCreatioNZ and these beautifully made 3D cards. Thank you!

Beautiful workmenship - a perfect stocking stuffer for my daughter

These are wonderful! I know just what I will put in each one and hang on the tree! Amazingly quick shipping!
Christmas Cornucopia packaging boxes

Super fast shipping, even over seas! Beautiful card, so pretty I'm afraid to sign the inside and give it as a gift! I would love to frame it and keep it for myself. :)

Arrived quickly & safely this morning. All ready in use in room overlooking Wellington harbour. Very happy. Exactly what I was looking for, beautifully packaged & really friendly communication. Thank you!!
Round domed glass magnets with beach scenery photos

GORGOUS Print! Looks fabulous on wall, and SUPER fast shipping!
Leafy Contrasts autumn leaf Print

These are wonderful. I have received so many compliments on them when I put them on an envelope of a card.♥
Names of God fine art print stickers labels

Amazing service and Amazing photo! The quality was even better than I expected and my boyfriend loved it! Definitely two thumbs up! Thank you so much!
Black and white panorama photo of New Zealand fern plants

Extremely quick and fantastic quality. Thanks for making my first purchase here, a breeze! Will be back to order more :-)
Business card digital graphics

Absolutely beautiful!! Thank you so much! They will be perfect for my holiday jewelry!!
Christmas Pillow boxes