The last few weeks have been an adventure! About 4 weeks ago, I applied for, prayed, found out I was accepted for a mission trip to Antigua & Barbuda in January 2020, and prayed some more, all in one week. Talk about FREAKING OUT! I had learned of this trip a few months back and really didn’t think anything of it. As I learned more, I prayed and asked God, “Are you wanting me to go? Why do you keep whispering this into my ear?” I applied. I didn’t even tell my husband. Eek! If you’re married, you know how this feels and usually how it goes. Cue FREAKING OUT!
Once I told him, his FREAK OUT session began, going into CFO (chief financial officer-for the family) mode, wondering how we were going to pay for a trip in only a few months. So, we talked, we prayed, we discussed, and we prayed some more. I started thinking about what I could do to contribute: yard sale, sponsor letters, or perhaps create something and invite people into the process. I am not a super fan of yard sales. You know, the whole getting up early thing. Not sure who’s idea it was to start at 6 or 7 AM on a Saturday morning. I would totally go with a 10am-2pm kinda gig. As for sponsor letters, this was a toughy. I had just gone to India last October and was feeling really weird about sending letters, wondering who I can send them to. After some time and asking God who he has in mind to partner with me financially, he gave me some names. I wrote them down and addressed some letters.
I still felt uneasy in the waiting. It’s not that I didn’t have faith that God would totally provide, I was just wondering if he would provide in time, to ease my husband’s FREAK OUT sessions. You know, because we want everything now and in our time, right? I remembered that I had some clay that I played with a couple months ago. After cruising Pinterest earlier this year, asking myself, “Can I really create something?” And then proceeded to laugh at myself. I have never been crafty. I’m horrible at starting projects and not finishing them. I read articles and watched videos about how to make earrings out of polymer clay. The first batch was horrible. They were like those resulting photos in the “Nailed it” pics we see. I even gave a couple pairs of earrings to a friend for her birthday. What was I thinking? I wondered what she was thinking. She probably received them and was thinking that awkward, “Thank you.”
So, with a little bit of that fear in the back of my head. I dove in. I did the research. I got the supplies and all the things. I made a batch of earrings. I shared my mission opportunity with friends and offered a pair of earrings to them for a $20 donation. And friends, God is so good! You showed up! The sales of the earrings, plus the sponsor monies coming in, blew me away. I proceeded to create more. Each batch improved. The creatives juices are flowing now! By this time, the husband was on board with this whole ear candy hustle, seeing the goodness and faithfulness of God.
This is the exciting and really FREAKING OUT adventure part! I have created an ONLINE STORE for you to check out the fruit of my blood, sweat, and tears. Just kidding. I have to tell you that this whole clay thing has been nothing but therapy for me. I’m grateful for the time to just sit and be still, often praying during the process, and not just for the clay to cooperate, but for you and the women in my community, the women in Antigua & Barbuda, the women on my team, my family, pretty much anyone that came to mind. My mind wasn’t going in several directions as it often does.
IT LOOKS LIKE COFFEE MUGS AND BIG HUGS IS EXPANDING!! I have to tell you. I am so a rookie. A virgin polymer-clay-earring-maker. Go easy on me. I take pics with my iPhone. The pics are blurry, but the earrings are so much pretty in person, trust me. I built a website by just winging it. And the fun part?!? The hubs and I are going to be at a few artisan fairs in the next couple months. Are they still called craft fairs? I love the process in the creating journey so much and want to offer the goods to you. Do I have a DEAL for you? For those of you that are reading this, I am offering a 10% discount on your order. Yes, that’s right. This offer is only available this week, Tuesday, October 15 – Thursday, October 17. Use CODE: Boo!!. So, get to clickin’ friend. Plus, a portion of the proceeds are still going towards the team’s mission trip costs. What a great opportunity for your ears to be cute models for colorful clay and to partner with me, the team, and Bonnie Floyd Ministries to serve the women and community in Antigua & Barbuda by teaching them artisan and business skills to support their families. And the best part? We get to share the love and hope of Jesus with them!
Here’s the thing. Some of you may know me and my big heart for women. My heart longs to encourage the women in my life and around me. I have a heart for marriage and parenting and everything in between. Am I perfect at it? Heck no! But, I have some experience and I have a whole lotta Jesus in me and I believe in a powerful God that can do anything! He has transformed my life and I know he can transform others. I started this blog over a year ago with that in mind, and it is still true today. But, with this expansion of Coffee Mugs and Big Hugs, and man, with God, more things can be accomplished. Yes, I’d love to pay off some debt. Lord knows, I’ll have student loan payments until I die! But that’s not all life is. Working and paying bills. I want to be a part of God’s eternal kingdom work. I want to invest in women. Whether that is through financial gifts for gals to participate in mission trips, to sponsor a gal who’s having a rough time financially so she can attend a weekly bible study, or to help a single mother get her mental health on track by paying for a therapy appointment. All these things have been revealed to me in the last couple weeks. Keep that in mind as you cruise through the store. I will have new items posted by the weekend, or you can check out my Instagram profile for pics of what I’m working on.
Now if I could only learn how to make coffee mugs and how to box up hugs, cuz I would totally send them to you right now. I believe in you. I adore you. I appreciate you. I look forward to our next chat, with coffee mugs in our hands, lifting each other up, like we women do.
I’ll have some items at the following events:
The Bluebird Market – Saturday, November 9th from 3 – 8pm and Saturday, December 14 from 10am – 4pm, in Kingsburg
Lydia & Pearl Market on Saturday, November 30 from 9am – 3pm at The Well Community Church, North Campus
Hope to see you there!
Hugging you so tight,