Jewelry: Telling Stories That Last

There are a few things that I love about jewelry…

  • It lasts—at least the good quality jewelry does.
  • It can be passed on. I have a few pieces of jewelry that came from my mom and both grandmothers that have been in the family. And my own engagement ring from my husband came from the gold of his deceased father. Just amazing.
  • It makes me feel, beautiful!
  • It adds the final touch to an outfit.
  • It sparkles and shines.
  • Anytime I’m asked about the jewelry I’m wearing; I get to tell a story.

I have a few momentous memories from pieces of jewelry that were given as gifts, or that I myself purchased through the years, and when I put those pieces on now, I get to think back and remember.

I get to remember the people who were with me when I bought or received it. I get to think about how I felt in the moment and how it makes me feel now.

A few years ago, my Dad and I were traveling through Europe to Prague and Germany after I finished my master’s degree that I earned from a business school in Spain. I cherish the garnet stone earrings he bought me from a shop owner and learning that garnet is Czech Republic’s main gemstone.

Then, of course when my husband and I designed our engagement ring before we were married. The anticipation I felt when I saw it when he proposed—would it look the way we had planned and wanted? It did. It was perfect.

And then a few months later he gave me a matching necklace that he designed for our first Christmas engaged. Seven hearts for seven days of the week, so I would remember that he loves me every day.

I got to wear opal earrings from my grandmother in my wedding. She is gone, but I had a piece of her with me in the beautiful jewelry she once cherished herself. She was not wealthy her entire life. To have dainty opal earrings, they were probably one of the most expensive things she’d ever worn or owned, and now I wear one in my upper, cartilage piercing all the time. I remember my Grandma, and my wedding day every time I look at it.

I often get compliments on a shell necklace my mom gave me from a trip she took to Hawaii once. It’s special that she thought of me and brought it home. I just love that necklace.

And then on our honeymoon, my husband bought me a pair of coconut carved earrings from a rasta man. So fun being in his country of Jamaica, and interacting with a local, enjoying the fun beauty of his craft in carving coconuts.

Or my trip to Morocco picking out a turquoise ring. MY FAVORITE!

I could go on and on with jewelry that I’ve bought and received on travels and trips and for special events.

Jewelry is SPECIAL.

There is so much more than the sparkles and shininess of jewelry, but that doesn’t take away from the beauty of some types of jewelry either!

That’s why Written Jewels has decided to become a Brand Partner with Bellia. This jewelry company is about women becoming all they were and are meant to be in the world. They believe women can change the world. They believe that women have value. They believe in the power of beauty—both in the jewelry itself and the woman who wears it.

If you want to tell a story of jewelry that’s life changing and makes a difference to the world around you, check out the Written Jewels Bellia Shop and choose a gift for yourself, or someone close to you that you think would be blessed by the story of Bellia’s values.

You’re worth it. Be Bellia today and continue the story of amazing jewelry and its values that go beyond the surface.

When Skin Tells a Story

I was rubbing my sun burnt legs down with lotion and noticed not only the hot feeling of a surface burn, but also felt an itch with a cluster of mosquito bites on my left calf. Scratching only irritated the burn, but if I didn’t scratch the bites were impossible to handle. Then, I noticed the nick where I had cut myself with a razor blade down near my ankle; blood was starting to trickle down my foot. I had rushed my shower, obviously, to have not noticed my beat-up legs and allowed myself to be so careless in cutting myself. Cuts, burns, and bites made my leg looked like it had been to battle.

I studied my other leg taking in an old scar down by my ankle. Fewer bites, but still uncomfortably burnt and a giant bruise on my shin.

All of a sudden, I felt a wave of being proud of my legs. I think typically my mind would rumble through thoughts of frustration having to dress a certain way to cover up the mess that was my legs in that moment. But not this time.

“Look at that.” I thought. “My skin. Taking the heat literally for all I go through and put it through.” My skin protects me from all kinds of elements just by walking the daily ins and outs of life. And look at all it can handle. The sun. Insects. Scrapes. Scratches. Bruises. Cuts that lead to scars. Though imperfect, my skin was beautiful to me in that moment. Is beautiful. And I don’t give it enough credit.

Skin is the biggest organ of our bodies and gets treated the harshest. Do we thank our skin for all it protects us from? Do we take care of it as we should? Do we drink enough water or eat high nutrient foods that hydrate and feed it properly? I try to. But besides the physical necessity that skin is by providing our bodies protection, there is so much more depth to understand.

My skin told the story of a woman who loves the outdoors— bug bites and sunburns. The bruises point to someone who is active, jostling around, and bumping into things. The scar on my ankle showed something of adventure or an experience that might have been rough in the moment, but ended with me being more resilient and now it’s healed. The razor cut by my ankle points to a personality of getting things done quickly, maybe too quickly and even rushing at times.

And what about you? What does your skin say to the world? What stories can people gather beyond the surface from that tough outer layer?

Some people have tattoos. (I love asking people about their tattoos! Sometimes the stories of a person’s tattoos are deep and meaningful. Others say they got a tattoo on a whim because of a bet or a preference. “I just like stars!” someone responded when I asked what the array of stars on their shoulder stood for.)

Some people have unique birth marks.

Some people have freckles.

Some people have stretch marks or wrinkles.

Some people have callouses built up from work and play.

Some people have more or less melanin, making them “black” or “white” or somewhere in between.

Think of the individual fingerprints you specifically were born with.

It’s pliable and soft. Growing with you. Stretching with you. Unique to ONLY you.

You can get skin wet and dry it off in a matter of seconds. Sometimes when it’s rainy and I need to run outside to the mailbox or take the trash out, I would rather go in my bare feet knowing that shoes will take forever to dry compared to wiping my feet off.

Skin gets dirty and it’s never a problem knowing you can then get it clean in the next shower.

Whatever your skin says on the outside about you, your life, your story—know it is absolutely beautiful and deserves appreciation and care.

Be proud of your skin. Be proud of what it says about you. Be proud of the first cover people see to the story and book that makes your life. And live your best life knowing your skin is beautiful even if it’s imperfect.

Internet Adventure.

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I was just thinking to myself about how the Internet is like a good book, taking you places you never knew existed. You could be sitting on a bed or at a desk, but your mind is elsewhere and the Internet can let you access true and untrue worlds of the past, the present, and the future.

Let me explain further. I am an avid reader. I savor literature, historical fictions, and romance novels. I treasure history, culture, business, and theology. I am curious to learn and love that I can use my imagination, reading about the life of a cowboy winning the heart of his lover, one day and an American girl in India running for her life, the next. And for someone with somewhat of an “old soul,” wishing for the days when TV was not the focus of the room and conversations didn’t manifest over texts, this was a rather inspiring thought. “What if the Internet really was an adventure waiting to happen?” like The Forgotten Waltz starting at Page One with, “I met him in my sister’s garden in Enniskerry,” and ending with…?

This was the process that took me to “Internet Adventures”: Who said the quote, “I am the master of my fate, I am the captain of my soul”? Oh yeah, It was in Invictus and Nelson Mandela said it, I think. Well, who said, “May the wind be always at your back”? Oh yeah, that’s from an Irish blessing. I wonder what would come up on my computer if I just typed it in? What other Irish blessings would pop up and what time period would they come from? Suddenly, my curiosity was so great. I opened up my computer willing this “adventure” to take place, so I could escape reality for a few moments and be inspired with great words of the past. Words from other cultures and times.

Like I said, I am an old soul and Reallllly wish LCD screens didn’t monopolize our attention, so this is all very new. The Internet has been a place of work for me, to research, to write, and to read and respond to emails. The Internet has been a place of procrastination for me, to stream movies, or to check out the latest pics of my friend’s fast paced lives on Facebook. It has been a place where I can easily lay in bed and window shop for clothing trends and my newest cravings, or to find fun and useless facts about life. I have never gone to the internet to get inspired and even now, to write a blog post dedicated to the Internet is… eerie. I go outside, pray, sit under the stars, people watch a coffee shops, walk in the woods, drive through the countryside, read a book, call a friend…

Tonight, I was hit with a new concept of the world of Internet that has changed how our culture perceives life and our interactions with people around us. The Internet is more than a shallow place to spend time or easy way to get info for our questions. It is an Adventure. And a simple Google search can take me to Ireland in .42 seconds with other Irish proverbs, inspiring quotes, and pictures of places my heart yearns to visit. SO, here I am, baring my old soul and turning the corner from viewing with disdain the addicting, monopolizing, and distracting nature of the Internet, to re-framing the Internet as an “Adventure” with so much of life and others’ stories at my fingertips.

Life Like a Movie.

Douglas-Fairbanks-with-movie-camera-1919-silent-movies-24997769-1329-912Stories are important. Everyone has one. As do movies, TV shows, books, songs… Each tells a story with words, lyrics, and scripts. After a phone conversation today, all about movies and Hollywood, I was inspired to write about life like a movie. When I think of movies and how they are written and created, produced and acted, I contemplate how they are not that far from real life. There is conflict, pain, suffering, heartache, and sickness. People go on missions, quests, and journeys. Men and women bravely deal with their families, the governments and authorities around them. People seek affection, love, justice, freedom, resolution, and a hero to believe in… Movie life draws you into the story if it’s created right. And the story is what you connect with, as you escape from your own. And though there is not always a happy ending (though Hollywood tries to make it so), there will be one day when He comes for us again. (Not unlike a movie.)