As a young mom, raising two little girls, I wanted to find a way to use gifts God placed in my hands to connect relationally with others, create reminders of truth and beauty and bring in a small income for my family. I tried my hand at painting again for the first time in years, taking what opportunities I could to teach myself and gather information from helpful sources and tutorials.
Shortly after I began, we miscarried our third child. In and through this experience, I began hearing from other mothers going through loss and we began working together on artwork that would help tell their story.
Two Lace Shoes has presented an opportunity for me to work with others to process their grief, honor life, celebrate milestones and remember truth. I see it as sacred work and I desire to create quality artwork for my clients. I want to understand their vision and bring it life on the paper. I’m honored to help people tell their stories through watercolors, pen, pencil, paint, wood and cold or hot press watercolor paper. This job and the relationships made through has taught me about grief and care in a way that I did not expect. I am grateful that I can use watercolors to do so, and I thought my painting days ended in eighth grade art!
Now I have four small children, a home with paint on the walls, laughter in the living room, tears on the couch and commissions on my desk. It has been a privilege to do this work. I have found yet again, as Corrie ten Boom said, “... the experiences of our lives, when we let God use them, become the mysterious and perfect preparation for the work. He will give us to do.”
A peek at our story...
"Marry someone kind. We all end up looking like turtles in old age.”
Kindness is underrated and craved desperately. Scott Sauls points out the cultural draw to Fred Rogers and Ted Lasso as evidence of this. He says, “People are exhausted by outrage, and are starved for kindness”
I got to marry a kind person. And I want to honor that attribute in him. Brandon is tender, he has a gift of listening genuinely to learn more, not to argue harder. He has a gift for caring appropriately, tenderly and truthfully when wounds are shared with him. He has joined me in depths of my lowest points with compassion and support, not condemnation, fear or frustration.
The advice about marrying someone kind, seeing as we do all look like turtles if we make it to old age, was given to me on the regular by my mom growing up. And I think it’s some of the best advice she gave.
I recently picked up the children’s book “We are the Gardeners,” struck by the whimsical illustrations and dedication to their dad who “taught them that they can do hard things.”
I immediately thought of my husband, who has lead the way for my children and I, showing us that we can also do difficult things.
The following evening, I worked on a painting of our own family, based on book’s illustration style.
My oldest, Riley, constantly looks to read or write and illustrate her own stories so I drew her with a notepad. And a little skinned knee. My husband has been a key influence to Riley in perseverance and trying again, even when she falls down.
Gracie, my second born, is painted tracking in mud and holding her “Yaya” ...a MVP in our home.
My son, Beau, is proudly wearing his dinosaur, light-up, rain boots, hugging Gracie (to which he often has to apologize and vice versa). They have have become adventurous, rowdy teammates.
Lastly, I drew my curly haired Caleb with his arm out wide, always performing, as the charming baby of the family. He’s watching his siblings to copy their every move, accurate to life.