If you've known me long, chances are you've heard me talk about my friend, Missy. She is one of those people that knowing her, changes you. You may think you'll just walk away and smile at her quirky ways and Missy-isms, but nope, she'll get in your head and affect you. You'll start questioning and thinking about yourself and your junk.
I met Missy in church circa 1999. Since then, we have shared innumerable cups of coffee, done art shows together, talked until I needed a nap and laughed our heads off. She lives, creates (and decorates) by her own rules.
I recently visited her in Florence, Alabama, for her daughter's wedding. I also got to visit with her 6 kids who I love and see her new shop, Mom's.
While that weekend was truly about her beautiful daughter's celebration, her kids had hired me to paint her in front of her shop and this was my opportunity to personally deliver it. While I was there, I couldn't help but reflect on some of the things that she's taught me.
Nobody has shown me better than Missy to let go of my people pleasing tendencies. When I'd worry about what people think or was steeping in anything that couldn't be changed or helped, she'd tell me, "Caryn, flush it!" This was her way of telling me to let it go, leave it alone, give it a rest, etc... I can't tell you how many times I've heard those very words replayed in my head when obsessing over something I can't control.
Color Brings Joy
Not only does she fill baskets and jars with Pez dispensers, spools, beads and vintage finds, but her friendships are colorful as well. She has taught me that those "fringe friends" in your life (the ones who you may not normally think to call, are some of the best and most underrated people.) When she lived in Florida, her big table was always full of different people all sharing a need to kick off their shoes and be in a place of non-judgement, laughter and soul rest. She lives out her motto that you don't have to go to church to be the church.
A Perfectly Clean House is the Sign of a Wasted Life
OK, maybe a clean house is lovely, but Missy has taught me that to spend your time listening to others, serving and exploring creative pursuits is worthwhile. Cleaning house is good, but should not be elevated in importance beyond truly living and loving well. The same goes for dirty feet ...
It's OK to experiment and head down a creative path just for the bliss of it. She freely shares her in-process furniture, thrift store finds, and beads and baubles, knowing that in the end it may be junk, or it may be something brilliant. Either way, you explored something new, did not stay in your "creative lane" and tried what may just become your next favorite thing to make.
So, if you are lucky enough to find yourself in Florence one day ... come meet "Mom" at Seven Points. You'll be glad you did!
Whether I am painting custom artwork, creating a water colored logo for a client, or teaching art students, I hope to refresh and inspire others with my work. Read more ...