Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Grand Christmas Open House Celebrations

Sock Monkey and GOT spent some time yesterday planning our door prize basket. Yes, I know we should have had that all taken care of by now, but I'm blond and Brandi is an artist. This is how we roll. We're even putting some Echo treasures in it! (Thank you Diane Berry.) Drawing will be Saturday.
Brandi has the coffee pot going at Sock Monkey and I'm putting out fresh red velvet cupcakes at Gathere
d Over Time. Echo Bike and Board has the cool factor going on and great discounts and adorable James.
And if you've seen this post and tell me that you've seen it I'll discount your whole purchase today (Dec 2) and tomorrow (Dec 3) 15%. What a deal, right?
AND have you SEEN the great Christmas light displays in Echo? WOW!!! We have ballots in our shops so you can vote for your fav. I love Echo.

Thursday, November 17, 2011

The Wreaths Are Here

All spring and summer I’ve been seeking out vintage Christmas ornaments just for this batch of beautiful wreaths. They’ll be making their appearance at the shop for our December 2nd Open House, but here’s a sneak peek and even the opportunity to purchase them early.  For close-up pics and purchase info visit my etsy shop, Gathered Over Time.

Friday, November 11, 2011

The Veteran in My Life

There is no way to describe fully the moment that I got it. It was electric. It shook me to my inner core.  It changed my outlook on life.
Sumpter, Oregon’s Labor Day flea market a few years ago. The vegetation was worn out after a summer of heat and little rain. Vendors of everything from antiques to socks were spread over and through the town. I was not expecting an electric moment. I was expecting cool junk. I found cool junk.  Then we sat down to eat a breakfast burrito.
Across the vinyl covered picnic table sat another couple and of course Jim and Dottie being Jim and Dottie, we struck up a conversation. I wish I remembered more about them. What I remember is that he was a Vietnam vet. I remember his hand reaching across that table and my husband’s reaching back. I remember that clasp. I remember their expressions. Recollection. Connection. Relief. Sadness. Hello and goodbye, my brother. More that I could not read, nor did I want to. Their heads, nodded toward one another. Their smiles, those tight together lips that try to lift at the corners but cannot quite…   And I, finally got it.
I did not know my husband before he went to war. I suspect the man he was then was very similar to the man he is today. I know that he is in some ways not the man he was before.  He was a Navy medic. There were treks with marines through jungles and swamps. There were physically and mentally broken men, boys actually that he tended to, that he carried to the helicopters. There was an orphanage where he spent time, visiting children.  People wanted to kill him every hour of every day. He came back to taunts of baby killer. Murderer. I did not know him then. I know him now.
War IS hell. He walked through it. He lived it. He lived through hell.
This man reminds me with his life that the things important to we who have not experienced war often seem shallow to those who have.   The things that often rob our attention and muddy our thoughts are the things that swim around the important things. My husband seldom reminds me verbally, but often, daily even  reminds me in the way he approaches life just what the important things are. All I have to do is pay attention.
My husband is a blessing to me. His presence on this earth is a blessing to it. He is a quiet and extraordinary hero. He is a veteran.