Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Lemonade and Stuff

My home office has been invaded:

It may be hard for me to write this week.

Katherine and James are east-coast with us, while Jay is west-coast. I’ve got a lot on my plate.

But I’ve been meaning to tell you about something cool for quite a while now, so maybe I can do it before James wakes up.

As I’ve written before, my son-in-law amazes me. His ability to accept radical life alterations with grace and faith is inspiring. His creativity and adaptability are unique.

In April of 2008, Jay was looking forward to graduating from Pepperdine Law School the next month, and working as legal counsel for an innovative commercial real estate company in Malibu. Katherine was making a respectable living as a model and actress, commuting to LA almost daily for gigs and auditions. They were talking about whether they wanted to move to LA, or stay in Malibu. (Win/Win.) They were involved in everything you can imagine… not a single dull moment. The future was blindingly bright and ridiculously rosy.

Obviously, all that changed in the blink of eye.

Screeching halt.

Life and death.

From the ashes of their former life, Jay and Katherine have gratefully reconstructed an existence far different from the dreams of 2008.

And it is good.

Very, very different, but very, very good.

Jay has been his wife’s primary caretaker in every sense of the word since her release from UCLA Hospital. It is a more-than-full-time job.

You can’t have more than one full-time job.

But my innovative son-in-law has found ways to make things work.

The incredible generosity of family, friends, and strangers, combined with a few mysterious but providential windfalls (winnings from a game show, for example), have enabled Katherine and Jay to stay afloat without the necessity of a traditional nine-to-five up until now.

Thankfully, he has recently accepted a job with a burgeoning new company that will enable him to work from home for much of the time. He will begin while Katherine and James are here, so he’ll have some nice quiet time to get started.

I want to share with you one of the innovative ways in which he has “made lemonade” in the meantime while waiting for this job opportunity. The name says it all: 

There is much that is symbolic about this little side business, but I would rather have you read Jay's own eloquent words. Please click here, and hit the "About" button.

He writes a blog on his design philosophy that also reveals much of his subtle humor and life philosophy. For instance, see his description of re-designing his sister-in-law's Santa Monica studio apartment:

While I'm indulging in what my daughter refers to as "shameless plugs," I'd love for you to also check out "pop and lolli," an adorable website for children's wall decals started by our friend MiaViljoen, a former Disney imagineer. Mia is a creative genius, and she and her husband are in the running for sweetest people in the WORLD. They have been an integral part of Katherine's healing journey. If you haven't checked it out from Katherine's website, here's the link:

(James was a model.)

While I'm at it, a movie in which Katherine had a one-line part (i.e. "Pregnant Bridesmaid") is now available on DVD through Amazon. Not Since You, a "Big Chill" type wedding reunion, was filmed here in Athens, and shows many great local scenes. The primary action takes place at "The Hill," a fascinating and beautiful historic property owned by our friend Lee Epting. His son, Ashley, was the producer of the film. Side note: Katherine's bridesmaid's luncheon was the most unbelievably elegant and beautiful I've ever attended. (Or even seen pictures of in a magazine.) It was hosted by her dear friend Sally, Lee's step-daughter, and her mom Jerry, in the dining room of the 1820's house. Need to find some pictures to show you. (Before digital.) Sally, her brother, and many other close friends have been married there over the years, so it was the perfect spot for a wedding movie.

(Note: I think it's PG-13; not for children.)

One last thing to check out: One Ringing Bell, a fairly new blog by a beautiful, multi-talented friend of mine, Beverly Varnado. She is a wonderful writer, artist, and musician. 

Okay. That's it.  Someone's been patiently paging me for quite a while. Good thing he knows how to entertain himself. Very creative!

I guess that would be a theme today... I love to celebrate the God-given gift of creativity as uniquely manifested and expressed through His children. I love to see people make something new, especially when it is made from things like lemons or ashes. Or when old things are refurbished and given new life.

Whatever your gift is... 

let it shine!


One last picture. The day after I posted "Come Sit With Me," I caught this precious little lady just soaking up the sun by the parking lot at the Retirement Home. Happy as a lark... blooming right where she's planted:


Laurel said...


Thank you so much for posting the Once Lost Home Goods link! I had no idea and I see things on there that I am definitely interested in. What a great concept! I'll be throwing some dollars that way in the near future!

Beverly Varnado said...

Kim, I was making my rounds tonight, and saw you had graciously linked to one ringing bell. Thank you bunches. It was good to see your sweet girl on Sunday, and I pray you all have a blessed week together. Thanks also for your faithful witness in His name. Bev

Anonymous said...

Several years ago I picked up a magazine that had several articles on "refashioning and re-purposing flea-market finds". These items had been used in one setting for a specific purpose, but now they had been refashioned into something different. These items were all still very functional and some even more aesthetic in nature. The new purpose they were given were "inventive" and "inspiring". I loved that not only for the practicality of these items, but even the deeper spiritual connotation!

I'm so glad God doesn't give up on us but continues to re-purpose us!!