Aug 30, 2012

do you?

Do you see God in the flowers? I do.
S T U N N I N G 
is how I'd describe this beauty.
and this one too.
I am so inspired by nature and God's creation
and it comes out through my art often in the form of flowers.
Here's a quick peekaboo at two original mixed media pieces 
which will be available for purchase (yippee!)
on my new website very soon. 
Don't forget September 10th
is our virtual grand opening celebration!
I am so thrilled to be able to offer some original pieces to my sweet readers 
who have been asking, requesting, and often begging for them.
Before now, they have only been available locally.
We'll have a section on the new website called 
STUDIO SHOP
and there will be a limited number of originals and exclusives
ready to be shipped to you
no matter where you live:)
I really love ECHINACEA
 I have been known to pull the car over and snap photos of these all over our city...
 and I adore DAHLIAS like this one...
And I have an even bigger news...
anyone who purchases an original piece of art from the STUDIO SHOP the first week
(September 10th -September 17th)
will have their name entered to win
another piece 
of original art I created.
 I'll be showing you what that will be during launch week.
I know, I know...so exciting!
Spread the word and let's have a big online celebration together September 10th!
Happy Labor day weekend to you and your families!
xoxo,
Caroline

Aug 28, 2012

Where in the World is MB? 3 new sightings!

Sweet readers, before I even get to our fun (Where in the World post)
we have super exciting news
for the new Multiple Blessings' website!
Don't forget September 10th
is our virtual grand opening celebration!
You can learn more about all the hoopla HERE.
We have a FABULOUS list of sponsors
(thank you awesome sponsors, you know who you are!)
and we actually have a total of
17 giveaways (34 total products or discounts)!!!
Can you even believe that?
These are some incredibly generous folks
who are sharing in the excitement of this special event!
It's going to be a big on-line party!
(insert big squeals and smiles from me)
Wanna' come? How can you help?
Spread the word and tell your friends to come join us now and especially on September 10th!
Thanks!
*********************************************************
Ok here's another post in the series WITW (Where in the World) is MB?
With our recent renovation I've spent some time and money (ouch!) in my local Bed Bath & Beyond.
Walked in the door last week and saw THESE front and center.
What a happy surprise!
All you sweet local peeps who've been asking can head
to THIS LOCATION and scoop them up.
 We love filling them with candy, movie gift cards & popcorn; giving them as gifts.
What other ways do you like to give Tervis tumblers?
 I haven't seen the recent Charlotte Living issue yet but a sweet MB Facebook fan sent this to me.
One of my Demdaco canvases was featured in the latest magazine.
 Another sweet friend spotted two of my Creative Co-Op wall art pieces
at the Young Life store at Windy Gap.
So grateful to have my art featured there:)
If you're out and about where ever you are and spot Multiple Blessings' products
please snap a photo or two and send them in.
We'll feature them in this fun series!
Hope you are getting excited for September 10th.
Seriously, 17 giveaways...crazy! aaaaahhh!
And my MB website is so outdated, just wait until you see the new one!
Blessings,
Caroline

Aug 27, 2012

summer's end

Summer was a whirlwind 
and it seemed to go by as quickly as these hoola hoops around her hips
but we tried to soak up every ounce of sunshine 
and all the joys that summertime and no routine brings.
Sunday we celebrated with a bang at our neighborhood pool 
with friends and swimming and music and smiles like this one...
and even more smiles. oh, and pizza too...
Earlier in the day we enjoyed the most beautiful baptism at church 
and then celebrated sweet baby Tripp afterwards at a special luncheon.
Holding him was like heaven...he's such a precious miracle.
Last week we had three open houses, yes, three.
For the next three years our kids will be at three different schools 
and have three different start and end times. 
Luckily they are all close by and we're blessed to be in a wonderful school system. 
Fabulous teachers & administration...
School supplies are all packed up and ready to go.
Today is the first official day... they're off to a great start.

Letting go feels difficult and good at the same time. 
We're praying for a great year for everyone.
Many blessings to you and yours as we transition from summer to school.
xoxo,
Caroline

Aug 23, 2012

Let's schedule a play date!

Dear paintbrushes, 
Let's schedule a play date soon, why don't we?
New bright brushes...I'm so anxious to see what you can do.
Thank you for your patience.
Old brushes, you're so loyal and true...
you know I'll keep coming back for more play time together.
I am working to organize our space 
so we have all our materials and embellishments ready at hand 
to create fabulous new work.
Hope you're ready for a fun play date soon in our new and improved studio...
I am!
Blessings,
Caroline

Aug 22, 2012

special delivery! Creative Co-Op

yowza
I wasn't prepared even after seeing it all in person here
and I wasn't prepared when they called and scheduled a special delivery time with a large truck
and I wasn't prepared when they said it was 2 large pallets weighing 565 pounds. 
I wasn't prepared for them to say they don't take the boxes or the wrapping with them when they leave.
If anyone local needs bubble wrap, let me know. I have PLENTY to share!
My sweet William who loves putting things together,
helped so much...bringing boxes in, opening them like it was Christmas (for me)
and putting things together like the two dress forms here. 
Love that kid.
In the end, the front room was overflowing with the goodies I designed for 
Creative Co-Op and I could hardly stand it.
I'm processing it all...
trying to decide what to keep, what to give away, and you may just see a few items here soon.
Stay tuned for that.....I'll keep you posted, promise.
 I think the tufted bench is so cute at the end of the twin bed...going to order an extra so they each have one. A great spot for tying shoes before school, laying their clothes out the night before, etc.
Would make a great piano bench too!
and this chair found a special spot near lots of windows...
Usually for the 
Where in the World is MB? posts
I'm featuring various places carrying the products...
and today they happen to be right here at home.
I'll be organizing my Be Still and Know sunroom for sure in the next few weeks
and plan to use it for just that.
If you're new here and want to understand the history behind this collection, 
you can read that here.
And if you are a retailer finding this post and you'd like to carry some of the collection in your shop, you may contact Creative Co-Op for more information.
G R A T E F U L.
Blessings,
Caroline

Aug 20, 2012

Helping Honduras...can you help?

Seeing God at Work-
another new series of posts you'll be seeing here at Designing For the Soul.
And boy oh boy do I ever see Him at work. 
Every single day.
As many of you know, I feel so fortunate to be
heading to Honduras this October
It's going to be a life-changing experience I'm sure 
and I'm looking forward to seeing what God has planned.
Sweet readers, I'd love your help.
I just got the green light that we are able to collect 
toothbrushes, toothpaste, soap and vitamins 
(for both children and adults)
If you'd like to help please email me at carolinesimas@multipleblessings.net 
and you'll be given details of where to ship them. 
Thank you to anyone who is willing and able. 
It's my understanding that we will actually be taking these donations 
and they will go directly to the children at the orphange we will visit. 
love that!
Once again, love this amazing company and all they stand for.
So honored to be the first licensed artist they work with for design. 
Wait until you see the pretty products coming out next January.
Here is a short video about their trip to Haiti last year and their incredible experience.
If you can't see the video, click here to view it on youtube.

Blessings,
Caroline

Aug 16, 2012

thank you Demdaco!

Just so honored to be one of Demdaco's licensed artists.
They just launched their new website here
and here is the kind profile for Multiple Blessings.
Did you know if you are a consumer, you can now search your area here
to find stores near your area who may carry Multiple Blessings?
How awesome is that?
And if you are a retailer who wants to carry my line in your store 
click here to find your local rep who can help you place an order.
(click upper right corner-find your local account executive)
yippee for Demdaco!
LO V E working with this wonderful client :)
They totally understand my passion for partnering my art with my faith 
and my mission to bring joy and the love of God into people's homes 
through the products we design.
And oh boy, do we ever have some new and exciting products in the works!
Stay tuned... It's gonna be fabulous!
Have a blessed weekend sweet readers...
and many, many thanks for your amazing, continued support.
It means so very much.
xoxo
Carolin

Dear Studio,

You are a disaster and such a mess right now. 
I am so sorry. 
I had to get the rest of the house unpacked and settled first. 
The kid's rooms, laundry room and kitchen and other things just had to come first. 
I hope you understand.
However, please know you are next on my list and I promise to get you clean and organized
so we can get messy and creative again very soon.
I do have a new and very cool stainless steel island for us to create
new mixed media work and brought back
our drafting table for sketching, watercolor and gouache 
 as well as our computer area.
I have missed you so much.
We have lots of work and fun ahead...get ready!
xoxo,

Aug 15, 2012

Honduras on my heart...

Welcome to my first blog post in a new series called
Be My Guest!
I thought I'd try this out with my family first
and soon I'll be hosting some other wonderful guests...
our interviews will be on a variety of fabulous and interesting topics.
for more information on Be My Guest sponsorship... click here.

I am looking for creative folks interested in sharing with my readers about your:
Career
Passion for Teaching
Thoughts on Motherhood
Trying to Balance it All

Let’s talk about:
Art
Music
Theatre
Sewing
Crafting
Photography
Travel

******************************************
My sweet dad just returned from 10 days in Honduras. 
It was his second trip there and was quite a powerful experience.
17 folks from his church went and served with hands and hearts wide open.
It has me looking forward to my October trip to Honduras
with Bridgewater Candle Co.
You may remember that amazing story here.
Still so grateful I can barely talk about it without crying.
Caroline: Dad, tell us about the area of Honduras where you were serving
and what did the views look like?
Dad: We flew into Teguicigalpa, the capital of Honduras.
Here is the view with the statue of Christ high on the hill.
Caroline: Wow, powerful sight to see!

Dad: And here are a few colorful hand-made hats and such for sale there...

Dad: However we worked in Trinidad de Copan.

Caroline: What were the conditions there?  What did it look like?


Caroline: Can you tell us what you did there and share some photos?
 Dad: This was the first time these families had a team come in to help develop their area. 
The people were so excited and so grateful. 
They truly felt like it was an answer to their prayers.
They clearly did not want a hand out; they wanted only spiritual and physical support. 
Caroline: Tell us a bit about the building process.
Dad: There were 7 team leaders and they had their own group of folks committed
 to help build homes...one cement block at a time.
the goal- 45 homes!
When we left we had completed 5.
Caroline: Looks like you all had a great time working together.
Dad: Yes, they are hard working folks and are so very thankful for everything.
Dad: Our team celebrated the completion of block work for one house!
Caroline: Looks like such an awesome moment!
Caroline: What was one of the most amazing moments of the trip? 
Dad: Well, do you remember Mr. Joe Sistare from church?
Caroline: Yes I do.

Dad: Well you know he had been to Honduras twice before to serve 
and was actually scheduled to go on this trip 
but unfortunately he passed away recently. 
Caroline: Sounds like he had a heart for Honduras. 
Dad: Yes, and our Men's Group at church raised enough money 
to completely build this family a new home.
This is the mom and her daughter and her aging father.
She had four children and her father living with them.
She's holding the photo of Joe Sistare that we gave her
and we had Joe's son and granddaughter with us on the trip as well so it was a special moment.
Dad: This is their current house...in very poor condition.
Caroline: Tell us about the children please...
Dad: They are so grateful and so happy.
Caroline: I see you taught them "bunny ears" while having pictures taken....
and I notice a young girl helping with a younger sibling.

Dad: This is Sadie and Ruby.
Dad: walking uphill with water balloons...
Dad: Lunch in Honduras...
Dad: This is my buddy, Jesus.
I taught him the Tiger handshake.
Caroline: What touched your heart the most Dad?
Dad: The folks there are filled with so much love and faith.
When we're there, we realize we are completely dependent on God
and the kind people there for ALL our needs.
We have no control...
There are no cell phones. no computers, no hot water;
There are challenging sleeping conditions, risk of disease;
the language isn't the same.
We are only there to serve so our focus is on service....
there are NO distractions.
It reminds me of the Bible Study your mom and I have been to this summer,
The Good and Beautiful Life...
Matthew 5...the Sermon on the Mount;
The Kingdom of God is not for the future,
but rather for right now.
Caroline:WOW!!!!
Dad: (choked up and break of tears)
Caroline: What's the "takeaway"
Dad: I heard two great quotes when I was there.
When I hear I forget
When I see I remember
When I do I understand.
by Calvin Coolidge

 And then a while back someone asked me why we actually go on these mission trips...
the cost, the time away, the hard labor...
why can't we just send money and have the folks there build the homes?
And then a great young man on our trip, Mike Fritz, said this about that same thought...
You can't send a check for hope.
Caroline: Love it, so true.

Thanks to my Dad for being the first Guest
and for serving in Honduras in the name of Christ.
Hope you all enjoyed the interview and a few of his photos from the trip.
He took a few hundred so we could't share them all!
*****************************
So many opportunities for

Be My Guest!

Let me know if you'd like to
Be My Guest 
or if you know someone who should be featured
by sharing their story and passion.
Blessings,
Caroline

Aug 13, 2012

There's no place like HOME!!!

Oh my heavens!
Moving is hard...yikes!
We did lots of it ourselves trying to save money and yowza... we are all exhausted
including the kids who pitched in and worked like crazy too. 
But we're really happy about it because we all feel vested in this place, H O M E.
We poured our hearts and souls into this space and we look forward to loads of memory-making.
It feels blessed from the foundation to the studs
and that's a good feeling too.
Although this is only our earthly home, we hope to use it for good and point it all back to Him.
Lots and lots still to do but we're getting settled back in our nest.
The studio is slowly coming together 
and I can't wait to share peeks of this new creative space. 
My head is swirling with projects and designs I've gathered
 both in my head and in my sketchbook over the last several weeks.
I would say this quick snap below mirrors my excitement to be back
(although I'm not feeling that thin or flexible at the moment)
There are some very exciting things happening 
with the virtual grand opening of the Multiple Blessings
redesigned website/blog and I hope you'll mark
September 10th on your calendar.
It's going to be super fun and we've got some very sweet folks 
donating products to give away to YOU!
A few spots left if you're interested in becoming a sponsor.
You can read the details here!
Big blessings your way,
Caroline



Aug 9, 2012

winds and wings...


Have you ever heard this old proverb relating to butterflies and hummingbirds?
 It's been described as being Chinese but I'm really not certain of it's origin.
 "The winds of our land are the stirring of a butterfly’s (or a hummingbird‘s) wings a world away"
Roughly translated, it means that the impact of small things can be felt a long way off. 
Neither the butterfly nor the hummingbird may ever know of the winds their wings created.
Our life's journey and our Christian walk can be like that. 
Something small we’ve said or done (without even realizing that we’ve said or done it) 
can have a profound impact on others. 
I've spoken here about how I love hindsight and looking back. 
I'll be posting more on "Seeing God at Work" 
If we open our eyes, we'll see him in everything.
When I look back on my own faith journey, 
I can see how so many people planted seeds along the way which shaped and formed me.
Many times the people were family members, close friends and community 
but other times the planted seeds came from people I didn’t know or with whom I have had no contact. 
They won’t ever know of their impact until we get to heaven.
©Caroline Simas

Sometimes we get discouraged because we may not see immediate results as we walk in faith. 
That doesn’t mean we’re not having an impact. 
What we do or say can impact a friend of a friend of a friend, It could take years to bear fruit.
God’s word tells us that even when we don’t see the results our efforts are not futile.
    1Corinthians 15:58 Therefore, my dear brothers, stand firm. Let nothing move you. Always give yourselves fully to the work of the Lord, because you know that your labor in the Lord is not in vain. (NIV)
Let us remember the winds that the wings of a butterfly or hummingbird cause. 
Don’t give up, take heart, we are making a difference.
Blessings on your weekend,
Caroline

PS-we're moving back home this weekend!

So overwhelmed with joy and gratitude and thankfulness I can barely type this.

*Thank you for your continued support....
remember we have so much excitement the next few weeks 
as we approach the new Multiple Blessings website launch. 
We have a few more spots available for sponsorship and various levels. 
You can check out the details here.
xoxo

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