Friday, July 26, 2013

Opening the Door / A Giveaway

I have a favorite quote about
taped to my computer monitor.

The intention, when I tacked
it there, was to remind me
to be a giver, 


But, as with many things in my
desk area that I see each day,

like the pretty small blessings
mug with the blue bird on it,
a gift from my daughter, 

or the

 Keep Calm and Carry On postcard,
sent to me from an Australian
blogging pal when she was
living in England, 

or the

heart of gold paperweight 
given to me several years ago
from a cherished friend,

I don't really see it, unless,
in a moment of contemplation,
I cast my eyes around my
{generally} untidy desk area
and they happen to land
on one of these items.

Ironically, that is exactly
what happened one moment
last week, on the very same
day that I was contacted by a
favorite on-line company,
asking if I'd like to host a
giveaway for them.

Hmm....a quote about giving,
followed by an email asking
me if I'd like to give.

To one of you.

If you've been a reader of mine for
any time at all, you have probably 
noticed that I haven't got sponsors,
nor do I host many giveaways.

Here's why.

First, I don't want the obligation
to write about anything other than
what is on my mind or in my
heart.  I just roll better when
I stick to topics that speak to me.

Second, my primary job description
is wife-mother-home manager.  As
much as I would love to add paid writer
to that list, I don't want any more
deadlines or promises in my planner.

At least right now.

And there are many.

That said, my love language is
giving and when a company with
a worthy mission and equally lovely
products presents me with the 
opportunity to make someone else's
day a little bit brighter, even 
international readers,


{Thank you,!}

NOVICA is one of the leading fair
trade artisan websites, working with
The National Geographic Society 
to give talented artisans around the
globe a place to share their talents
and access the world marketplace.

Yuni Kristina, Silk batik artist from Java

NOVICA also makes 0% interest,
micro-credit loans to artisans, which
not only helps them to succeed,
but also supports the preservation
of ancient craft techniques for
future generations.

All by hand.  Imagine the hours it took to embroider this.

 Some of my favorite Novica items include
their dreamy cotton hammocks
perfect for summer into fall reading, as well
as their batik clothing,  especially the
beautiful variety of scarves.  And the
belts.....simply special.

Dreamy and handmade.

Love this modern dot batik.

Novica wanted to give me, as well as 
a P&H reader, a $50 gift card, but
I'm giving both away. {Yay for you!}

To be one of the two winners,
simply leave me

a comment

or drop me an e-mail

describing your love language,* 
and I'll toss your name in
my summer hat.

{Affirmative words?  Quality time?  
Gifts?  Acts of service?  Physical touch?}

I'd love to know!

The giveaway will run through
midnight on Sunday, August 11th.

And the quote that I have
taped to my computer monitor?

I've typed it at the end of this
post, just in case it speaks to
you, too : )

No one has ever become
poor by giving.

~ Anne Frank


*Based on The Five Love Languages,
by Gary Chapman

All images except those from are my own.

Giving opens up the door to receiving.
You have so many opportunities to give, every day.
Give kind words.  Give a smile.  Give appreciation and love.
Give compliments.  You can give courtesy to other motorists
while you are driving.  You can give a smile to the car parking
attendant.  You can give a warm greeting to the newspaper stand
person or the person who makes your coffee.  You can give by
allowing a stranger to go ahead of you into an elevator, and you
can give by asking which floor they are going to and pressing the
button for them.  If someone drops something you can give a helping
hand and pick it up for them.  You can give warm embraces to those
you love.  And you can give appreciation and encouragement to everyone.
There are so many opportunities for you to give and thereby open
the door to receiving.

~Rhonda Byrne, The Secret Daily Teachings


Alicia said...

you know what's funny is I was JUST looking at this chart I have for the love languages for kids...same author. I love it because its SO true for all my kids. MY love language is probably gifts or acts of service. This is a fabulous giveaway. WOW!

Nantucket Daffodil....a name not a place said...

You are so sweet! Hmmmm my love language. I have read and reread these books, and I wish I knew. Sometimes I think I am words of affirmation, because someone saying something nice is so important. Maybe thats why I like Instagram so much! Sometimes I think its acts of service. But I do and do and not much love for all I do. So hmmmm I think, maybe quality time? I wish I had it! So, I guess I have figured this out! I need someone to compliment me, thank me for what I have worked so hard on, and want to hang out with me....just because.

Your giving post has caused me to do some deeper self-reflection than anticipated this Friday morning. Thanks Suzanne.

Celeste said...

I participated in a study of the love languages at my church a few years back, and it was apparent to me that my love language is definitely quality time.

Di said...

I love doing for friends and family. A thoughtful card, small gift (a sprig of lavender or flower), a funny email or just a Hi. One of my favorite things to remember is from Mother Teresa "Do it anyway...even when.." would love to be included in your giveaway. Have a wonderful day, Di@ Cottage-Wishes

Stitchfork said...

Always love where you see and find inspiration Suzanne! And if I look up from my computer screen I see - imagine, dream, simplify and love done in metalwork. And totally impressed with the work and talent to create such beautiful pieces!
xo Cathy

noel said...

I love that Anne Frank quote and use it in my classroom when we read the play based on her diary :) My love language is words of affirmation. Thanks for sharing this website with us!

Bonnie said...

Suzanne, My love language is words of affirmation and quality time.

Your giveaway is lovely and the company supports good projects. Thank you.

NanaDiana said...

Oh- I see you have read The Five Love Languages by Chapman! lol I am a SERVICE person, too. It is amazing the difference it makes when you figure out what works for different people. Don't sign me up, Suzanne, because I have won several giveaways this year and I know it will make someone happy to win! xo Diana

Just a little something from Judy said...

I participated in this study of love languages a few years ago, and I think affirmation and words that reveal that in one way or another, is my love language.

What beautiful pieces and what a generous giveaway. Thanks for sharing the website and for this well written post.

Debby said...

Although I haven't studied the language of love or read the book, I would say mine is physical touch.....a hug or holding a hand.....or kissing a baby.


My love language is talk.

I love it that each thing around your desk is intentionally beautiful and meaningful.


Jenni said...

Thank you for this lovely post - I am also a giver. It is such a wide open way to express yourself to others known or unknown.
I had not seen before and intend to investigate because I like what they do but the glimpses you showed looked superb as well.
Thank you again.

Castles Crowns and Cottages said...

Good morning darling friend!

Giving is becoming more and more an important thing because really, that's what life and even dying is all about. Sounds morose, but it has to be thought about....if all we ever do is live to GET, once we lose it all, we have no where to turn. But by giving, we are storing a warehouse in Heaven of all the reasons I think, we are even here.

I love Novica, and won something from them a while back. So good to see you blogging again. Anita

Rainy Lake Gal said...

My love language is a card with a personal message for those friends I can't hug in person.

Linda @ Itsy Bits And Pieces said...

I love Novica and their mission! Their artisans make such beautiful creations! I am fortunate to have some of their items, so you don't need to enter my name this time! My love language is "a generous spirit". Lovely quote at the end, too!

Rambling Tart said...

Such gorgeous items!! I love the talent you've featured. :-) My love language would have to be words of affirmation. For sure. :-) xo

pballard said...

So glad to have found your blog.. Thanks for the chance at this great giveaway! I picked a word in January "Focus'! I am trying to focus on whats important to me each day.. God, family, love, friends, etc..

Jo said...

My love language is definitely quality time. Of course all the languages of love are appreciated. Nice giveaway. Jo @ Let's Face the Music

judy gardner said...

i find love in giving. whether its time or something tangible. small things mostly. i love paying it forward when i can and i love giving to children because they always appreciate you.

kolpin said...

i love learning from people much older and wiser than me--hearing their stories, their backgrounds, learning about their life history. it teaches me so much and helps me be a better person.

Familie Prinz said...

Thank you for beautiful words and pictures. And for making me, and sometimes my friends as well, think.
My daughter is also going to college, in September, to another country (but maybe nor further away than your daughter is from you - this here is still Europe). All the best for you, your daughter and your family.

My favorite love languages are physical touch and acts of service, so I am kind of a service-giver (when possible).

We learned about the love languages in a Marriage Encounter course. How do you match with your partner in the languages? It seems that my husband and I are opposites, so we really have to work on giving what is not "natural" to us.

Gretchen said...

Beautiful post... And a generous giveaway as well.
I believe I am a mix for my love language. Gifts of service and words of affirmation seem to be the way I share my love. Really need to read the books again, as its been years since I read them last.

Little Cottage on the Pond said...

Love languages- one of my fav books and was so eye opening in my marriage. I am acts of service- all Travis has to do is build something or make it more efficient and I am all, "How you doin?" His is words of affirmation & physical touch- knowing our love languages makes our marriage so much stronger. I am drooling over that modern dot batik!!

patty said...

you are such a delightful writer. i love your posts... even your give-a-way posts! :)

my giving love language is acts of service... i love to do for others, surprise with an act of love... my receiving love language? shoot... any. :) i love a smile from a stranger, a back massage from my son, affirmation from my husband...


Deborah said...

Hi Suzanne!
I just popped in for a visit and once again you draw me in by your love and your kind words.
I love "The five love languages"! I think my love language is affirmative words.
I would highly recommend this book and I have also read the one for teenagers..awesome! A great help in walking with them and loving them through those challenging years.
I loved your words on giving and the quote at the end...its beautiful.
Novica sounds so wonderful!
What beautiful creations they make with their hands.

I always leave here with a heart that's inspired, encouraged and full. Thank you sweet friend xo

All my heart,
Deborah xoxoxoxo

debijackson said...

My love language is sharing. I am a teacher and I share my love and understanding with my students.

mrsrodjac at hotmail dot com

Lisa @ Shine Your Light said...

Its become such a highlight of my day to visit you here and find a new post. Hi my friend!!!! I hope you're enjoying every single day of this sweet summer!!!! I love your focus of your life right now and what you want this blog to be for you. Because its such a joy to the reader and I'm glad it's a place that you enjoy coming to, for your heart and not out of obligation.

Novica - aren't they such an amazing group of artists? I bought a few Christmas presents from them last year and love the handmade, special, unique goods.

My love language? There are a few. A GOOD hug, a quick call from a friend about something funny, an iced-coffee brought home to me on a random afternoon by my husband. Your words! They are like a gift every time! xo

Kriquetdvm said...

Simply beautiful. My love is the written or spoken word. Unexpected letters from far-away friends; the surprise phone call where you spend the next hour catching up since the last one; the kind word from a stranger telling you that you look beautiful in that dress. Words are a path to your soul. Your words touch my soul and I wish you God's blessings in return.

Jemsmom said...

I have no idea what my love language would be! I have heard of love languages often, but have never read about them. I think I have found a new book! Thanks so much for the opportunity and what an amazing company! I hope you are well!!!

Tricia said...

I've heard of that book, but have never read it. Hmmm...I think my love language would be affirmative words and physical touch. I'm always hugging my kids and telling them how much I love them. Hope you're having a good week :)

Leslie Harris said...

What a lovely post. Thank you for being you and spreading your brand of giving. I so appreciate it. Let's see, my love language at the moment is "family time" because the next few weeks are really it. We are getting ready to drop off our youngest to college and our oldest son just came home last night after finishing summer school at his college. So these next weeks are precious ones for our family. The chunk of time we'll have together before school begins and I want to drink it all up and be in the moment. Because these are some of the 'good old days' I know that.
Leslie (aka Gwen Moss)

Palomasea said...

Happy Sunday, dear Suzanne!

I have missed your beautiful posts...just not at the computer as much these days...
You are so busy as well, but how kind of you to accept this giveaway offer, sweet friend...
I remember you writing about this organization some time back, and I have had them bookmarked ever since.
I am with you on this seems to be my love language...this must explain why all of my past jobs have involved service... :)

Wishing you a beautiful week, dear friend! Thank you for being you!
And now to catch up with your previous posts...
(Beautiful photos...)
- Irina

Marilyn Leslie said...

Right now I'd say that my language is gift giving. I love to find unique gifts to give my family. I also love words of appreciation.

lmurley2000 said...

you know I love each day and the people who are in it, because each day is special to me, i'm disabled and am limited to what I can do so each day is special and I appciated each day

Elizabeth@ Pine Cones and Acorns said...

Suzanne, I hope that all is well there in MN and that your visit with your cherished friend was filled with special moments. I have been thinking of you as the start of school draws near and hope that you are OK as the time for your precious girl to spread her wings draws near.

You are in my thoughts!

xox Elizabeth