Lisa Leonard Designs

Archive for the ‘finding beauty’ Category

surprised by love

January 27th | finding beauty

As I live, I learn there is so much more to love than I used to think. It’s deeper, wider, stronger and more beautiful than I used to believe.  Here are some things I’m learning about love…

1. Love grows in rocky soil. With a little sunlight and water, love can grow even in difficult circumstances.  It doesn’t require ideal conditions to thrive.

2. Love is resilient. It gets nicked and scraped, but if those bumps and bruises are tended to, it will heal to become even stronger.

3. Love is a renewable resource. Sometimes I feel used up and empty. But with a little rest and room to breathe, I am refreshed and ready to love again.

4. Love is brave. A heart that knows it is loved is willing to risk and be vulnerable.

5. Love expands. There is no limit to love. As we’ve made new friends and watched our family get bigger, I’ve seen my heart stretch and grow.

How has love surprised you?

beauty in brokenness {free printable!}

January 23rd | blog friends, finding beauty

It’s Friday friends! Whose ready for the weekend?

Today I am featured over at Barn Owl Primitives’ blog. Such an honor! I adore Kristi–and although we’ve never met in person, we regularly connect online, through texts and with phone calls. I can tell you she is a woman with heart who has built a thriving business that creates beautiful things. She and her husband work together {like Steve and I} so we have a lot in common.

If you’ve been hanging around here much, you’ve probably heard me talk about finding beauty in brokenness. I used to think I could create a perfect life, now I realized there is no perfect. But there is still so much beauty! In the crazy, everyday mess, I see bits of beauty and love–and it fills my heart!

Barn Owl Primitives created this gorgeous sign for me and guess what, today they are making it available as a FREE printable just for you! How amazing is that?! Click here to find it on the Barn Owl Blog. 

Happy Friday Friends!

feeling fallish {finally!}

October 22nd | finding beauty, what I'm wearing

This morning is actually felt like fall. It was chilly and my scarf felt cozy {as opposed to me wearing cozy things regardless of the warm weather. We’re so ready for some cooler temps and rain around these parts!

I’m linking up with Lindsey at The Pleated Poppy for some fashion inspiration.

Have you heard of fashionABLE? It’s an awesome shops that creates sustainable business in Africa. Pretty awesome, right? This scarf is from their shop.

I love mixing prints and this floral with the striped scarf is fun without being crazy.


Outfit details: Coated jeans, Banana Republic {similar}. Floral top, Collective concepts, TJ Maxx {similar}. Scarf, FashionABLE. Heels, Target. Bag, Target. Necklace, My shop.

I’m loving the 30″ chain on the tiny diamonds necklace–it’s perfect for layering scarves over a necklace. I’m ready for fall. Who’s with me?

the impossible

July 10th | blog friends, finding beauty

the impossible-01

There are many days where we do just fine. We have a rhythm that works.  Eggs are scrambled and coffee is poured. We cuddle on the couch and I pat David’s back or give Matthias soft scratches. There are baths with bubbles and clean clothes folded in drawers. The house is tidy {enough} and we have time to run and play in the park.

But woven in between the mundane, beautiful moments of the everyday are moments of anger and frustration. They sneak up on me when I least expect it.

Last week I found myself taking a look around the house and feeling a satisfied contentment with the imperfect. I’d had a productive morning of washing sheets, remaking beds and packing up too-small clothing to give to a thrift store. As I sat on the couch feeling like I had a hold on life, David pushed a toy off the table and it landed hard on my toe.

I’m blogging over at {in}courage today. Hop over to read the rest…

the best kind of worn out

June 10th | david, finding beauty

This post is from four years ago. I just ordered new shoes for both boys and they arrived yesterday–and I remembered this post. As soon as I looked it up, I got tears in my eyes and knew I wanted to share it with again. It gives me all kinds of hope.

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these are the shoes david wears every day.

and guess what? they’re worn out.

there’s a hole right through the bottom of the shoe.

and you know how he did it?

exploring, walking, running, and generally getting into trouble.

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and we couldn’t be happier.

i remember when david was born

and the doctor told us he would never walk, or talk

that he may not see or hear.

and we cried.

and we wondered and waited.

and one day, when he was five years old-he did it!

for months, he’d been pulling up, cruising, but finally, HE WALKED!!

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and now he’s wearing out his shoes.  love that.

here are some new kicks. get busy wearing them out, kid!

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and david we love you.

you are pure joy and silliness.

hello noticing, hello monday

May 26th | finding beauty, hello monday

It’s been a whirlwind few days–with a quick trip to UCLA to see David’s GI doc, comfort him with all the GI pain he’s having, host guests, and try to keep up with work stuff, I’m feeling overwhelmed! I’m trying to slow down, give myself grace, let thing be imperfect, and notice the beauty that’s all around me! Join me for some hellos?

***Hello Monday is where I greet the new week with an open heart and a fresh perspective. It’s a new beginning–and there’s so much to be thankful for! Join me by leaving your own hellos in the comments section or linking up a hello monday post there!***

Hello sunrise against the jacaranda tree. Breathtaking.

Hello sipping coffee and taking a deep breath.

Hello soaking up a Monday holiday and cuddling with my boys.

Hello blue skies and summer only days away. Hooray.

Hello having my camera handy so I can capture a beautiful moment.

Hello being present in the moment, even if it’s imperfect.

Hello fresh flowers in our kitchen window.

Hello noticing Matthias’ sharpened pencils and his determination to draw the perfect Jedi.

Hello noticing the sweet tunes that David is tapping out on the piano.

Hello making a to-do list that’s reasonable and crossing things off one at a time.

Hello Monday. It’s a new week, filled with beauty. I want to take time to notice! Will you join me? What are you saying hello to this week? Leave some hellos in the comments or link up your own hello monday post there!

hello healing

April 14th | finding beauty, hello monday

***Hello Monday is where I greet the new week with an open heart and a fresh perspective. It’s a new beginning–and there’s so much to be thankful for! Join me by leaving your own hellos in the comments section or linking up a hello monday post there!***

For the last week, I feel like I’ve been exhaling. I didn’t even realize I’d been holding my breath! Over the last few months David’s had severe GI pain with cramping, arching, constipation and hours of tears. He’s been inconsolable. But a a couple weeks ago we saw a new GI doc at UCLA. We’ve switched up his meds, feeding schedule and routine. And I can’t begin to tell you how much HAPPIER, more comfortable and more content David is! We are elated!

Being on this side of the pain and physical issues David was facing gives me more objectivity. In the middle of it, we were just in it, surviving and coping. Being on the other side, I can appreciate how hard it was, how drained I was and how grateful I am for reprieve. My sister used the analogy that when you’re running from a bear, you don’t stop to think how scary and dangerous and terrifying it is, you just RUN. But when the bear is gone, you realize, WOW that was awful! That was terrifying. That was exhausting. Now that we’re not being chased by a bear, I can exhale and we’re all healing. And feeling very, very grateful that David is thriving!

How about some hellos for a new week?

Hello lone tree near the ocean. You make my heart happy.

Help little birdie, perched on a gray, quiet morning.

Hello waves that soothe my soul.

Hello sister who understands my heart.

Hello feeling grateful. Hello exhaling. Hello healing.

Hello endless sky.

Hello writing with a calligraphy pen. So fun!

Hello gathering a few little things for Easter baskets.

Hello painting a bench yellow. {Pics soon!}

Hello something very very beautiful to share with you this week!

Hello early bedtimes that make for happier mornings.

Hello praying for these friends who are in Haiti right now. Will you join me?

Hello brand new, week full of healing and hope!

What are you saying hello to this week? Leave some hellos in the comments section or link up your own hello monday post there!

david and goliath

April 4th | david, finding beauty

If you sat through Sunday school every week, like I did, then you know the story of David and Goliath. When David was a young boy, he went out to fight the mighty giant Goliath. He didn’t wear armor and he carried no sword. Armed with five smooth stones and a slingshot, he rushed toward the giant, striking him with a stone between the eyes. The giant fell facedown to the ground. With God on his side, the mighty giant was no match for David.

Before David was born, we had already picked out his name. As I held my tiny son in my arms those first days, I marveled at how appropriate the name was.  Born with a syndrome causing a serious heart defect, two fingers on his left hand and global delay, our little boy entered the world with his own giant to face.

At eleven years old, my David faces his Goliath every day.

He has no words, but patiently takes my hand and leads me to what he wants.

He suffers from reflux throughout the day but is quick with a smile between episodes.

He’s eager to make a new friend. If you bend down next to him, he’ll likely throw his arms around your neck or climb up onto your lap.

He faces countless doctor visits, invasive procedures and surgeries, but instead of being bitter, he’s joyful.

He wakes up ready to greet the day and walks to school with a spring in his step.

My David battles his giant every day. He rushes toward the day with bravery. With God on his side, this syndrome is no match for David.

Are you facing your own Goliath? I would love to hear about it.

hello spring! {bloom}

March 31st | finding beauty

***Hello Monday is where I greet the new week with an open heart and a fresh perspective. It’s a new beginning–and there’s so much to be thankful for! Join me by leaving your own hellos in the comments section or linking up a hello monday post there!***

We are home from New York {more pics to share this week!} and David and I are turning around to see a new GI at UCLA tomorrow. It’s a crazy week–but there’s nothing unusual about that! How about some hellos?

Hello sunshine and blooms. Is spring making an appearance where you are?

Hello cooking 4 dinners last night–I’m bring to make sure in the craziness we have healthy options for food.

Hello pink! It’s the sweetest color, and when used as an accent, softens everything.

Hello tired! This mama needs some downtime. I’m making sure to schedule some in this week.

Hello meetings and planning! There are exciting things happening at Lisa Leonard Designs and my head is spinning just a little bit!

Hello Star Wars. We’re watching the movies as a family and the boys are definitely obsessed!

Hello cup of coffee and a good book. I‘m currently reading this book and it’s challenging me in the best ways. I highly recommend!

Hello sewing machine. I invested in one a few months ago and I want to learn a good skirt pattern for this summer.

Hello lizards. We’ve got a few that live on our front porch and one jumped out yesterday and scared me half to death! We got a good laugh out of it!

Hello last day of March–tomorrow is April!!

Hello beautiful, mundane, everyday stuff that makes up the sweetness of life.

Hello Monday! What are you saying hello to this week? Leave some hellos in the comments or link up your own hello monday post there!

whoa! giveaway {barn owl primitives}

March 13th | blog friends, decorating, finding beauty, giveaway

Have I ever mentioned that I believe there is beauty in brokenness? Sigh. Things have been feeling a bit more broken around here lately–lots of doctor visits for David which means lots of driving and time away from the home/workshop. So I’m looking hard for bits of beauty and guess what?! I’m finding it.

Kristi, of Barn Owl Primitives created this AMAZING sign that speaks right to my heart. Does it speak to yours, too?

I love the chalkboard finish. She hand paints each one. Seriously beautiful!

I’ve got it hanging in our living room–along with that thrifted lamp that got spray painted {and the shade striped away} and a bike that my mom gave to Steve for his birthday {he loves to cycle}

Do you believe there is beauty to be found? Even in the every day muck and yuck of life? I find myself taking hot bathes, sipping creamy coffee, cozying up with a soft blanket, stealing snuggles and kisses and stopping to notice the flowers.

Kristi is giving one lucky reader a $75 gift card to her shop. Woohoo! Just leave us a comment and tell us one way you find beauty in the midst of the craziness of life. I hope you win!