I love going to the beach in the summertime... it's my happy place.
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It’s terrific to be back here with you this week. I missed you! We had a fantabulous time at the Girlfriends’ Getaway Virtual Retreat the first week in June. And last week, I took a few days off to get my duckies in a row for the rest of the summer. I have lots of fun things planned for the next few months and I can hardly wait to share them with you. I’d be remiss if I didn’t address the current state of affairs we’re muddling through right now, though.

Admittedly, I’m still trying to wrap my head around all that’s happening in our world.

COVID 19 is raging here in Alabama as our state opens back up from weeks of sheltering in place. Hospitals are reaching their capacities, yet I see people all over town not wearing masks. I’m bumfuzzled by their apparent lack of concern – and consideration – for their fellow citizens. And the protests and riots bring forth a multitude of questions for which I have no answers. So I find myself looking within…

What can I, just one human being on this great big planet, do?

That seems like a simple enough question, right? There are lots of things we can do. We can wear masks when we go out. We can help elderly family members, friends, and neighbors by doing their grocery shopping. We can check in every day or two with those who live alone. We can donate to the local food bank. We can listen to those who are marginalized.

We can… you fill in the blank.

 

Love one another by helping those in need.

 

Those are, indeed, all steps in the right direction. But I think we’re at the threshold of definitive change and that requires us to examine our beliefs. Now, if you’ve been following me for a while, you probably know that my faith is the essence of who I am. And every time I find myself facing a new challenge, I rely on my faith to guide me. So that’s what I’m doing right now. Here’s what I know…

Love conquers hate.

And when we live in the way of love, we can accomplish far more than we dare to dream. So, what does living in the way of love mean? It means being kind to everyone. It means being generous with everyone. It means being inclusive of everyone. It means putting others before yourself.

It’s not easy to live in the way of love. I try to do it every day. And I fall down almost every single day, too. But I get back up, dust myself off, give myself some grace, and try again. Because I also know…

We’re better together.

And I sincerely believe that we can make the world a better place, one stitch at a time.

Three years ago, I created a manifesto for Serendipity Needleworks. It conveys how I want to show up in the world, as a business.

It also includes values that are important to me on a personal level.

I’ve been in this industry for 29 years and I’ve found stitchers to be a remarkable group. I’m so very grateful to be part of the needlework community and I thank you for being part of the Serendipity Needleworks family.

Sending you lots of love and a great big hug!

Now, let’s go make something wonderful…

XOXO!!
Stitch with a smile!

 

 

 

PS: Please understand… I’m not implying that you have to be a Christian to be a good person. I know lots of wonderful people who don’t practice Christianity. And there are plenty of really good folks who don’t practice any kind of religion at all. I respect your right to believe whatever you choose.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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22 Comments

  1. Deb Shippee

    June 18, 2020 at 7:13 pm

    Thank you Ellen, well said!
    Love will conquer all.
    Kindness is the path.
    Thank you too, for helping to bring beauty into this hurting world.
    Many Blessings!

    Reply
    • Ellen Johnson

      June 18, 2020 at 7:18 pm

      Thank you for taking the time to share your kind words of encouragement, Deb. Your support means more to me than you’ll ever know.
      XOXO!
      Ellen 🙂

      Reply
  2. Laraine Croall

    June 18, 2020 at 7:37 pm

    Your comments are spot on. My part time job wants me to come back to work soon but in fairness to me I can not. I have tried to practice good habits during this time to protect others as well as myself. I am concerned about others who are not protecting themselves and others. The world is crazy right now but I believe that we will soon get “on the right track” and everything will work out

    Reply
    • Ellen Johnson

      June 19, 2020 at 9:46 am

      Hi Laraine!
      Thank you for taking the time to write. I agree 110%… I know we’ll get through this and be stronger in the end because of it. Take care of yourself, sweet friend!
      XOXO!
      Ellen 🙂

      Reply
  3. Allene Peek

    June 18, 2020 at 8:16 pm

    Thank you, Ellen. GOD is LOVE !!!

    Reply
    • Ellen Johnson

      June 19, 2020 at 9:46 am

      Indeed, He is, Allene!
      Sending you lots of love, sweet friend!!
      XOXO!
      Ellen 🙂

      Reply
  4. Pauline M Williams

    June 18, 2020 at 9:13 pm

    I am always amazed how little it takes to be unkind. Instead of tearing the world apart we should be trying to seek ways to push forward to better times for all. I love how crafters of all types seem to bond together in hard times. Thank you for all that you do to keep us on the right path. Love to you and yours.

    Reply
    • Ellen Johnson

      June 19, 2020 at 9:52 am

      Pauline, you are SOOO right… makers are definitely a wonderful community. Maybe it’s because we take random things and put them together to make beautiful works of art to brighten the world. Making requires optimism and I wholeheartedly believe that makers are an optimistic bunch intent on making the world a little better than it would have been without our contributions. Thank you for taking the time to write and for sharing your thoughts.
      Love to you and yours…
      XOXO!
      Ellen 🙂

      Reply
  5. Linda

    June 18, 2020 at 9:50 pm

    I have seen a lot of people not wearing their mask here in Augusta, Kansas, too. They really don’t care. And they are not taking it seriously. Plus they think it is one big joke. I wear a mask when my husband and I got to the store. One day at the store I counted 14 people wearing a mask. That was the most I have seen at the store. And now there are a lot more not wearing a mask. And I have seen some kids and teenagers wear a mask. And that made me happy, too. I don’t mind talking about needlepoint, but it is nice to be able to talk about something different.

    Reply
    • Ellen Johnson

      June 19, 2020 at 9:54 am

      Linda, thank you for taking the time to write – and for doing your part to help “flatten the curve” so that more people don’t get sick from Covid 19. These are definitely challenging times and I’m so grateful for our Serendipity Needleworks family. Thank you for being part of it. Take care, sweet friend, and stay well!
      Sending you lots of love and a great big hug!
      XOXO!
      Ellen 🙂

      Reply
  6. Cherie Maynard

    June 19, 2020 at 7:08 am

    Thank you for your well thought words! Keep them coming love is the first and greatest command! It really is easy and hard to do at the same time. Love is a conscience thing you have to be aware of all times. Thank you for sharing.

    Reply
    • Ellen Johnson

      June 19, 2020 at 9:56 am

      Hi Cherie!
      Thank you for taking the time to write. I sincerely appreciate it. Your support means the world to me. And you’re soooo right – living in love is a simple concept, but doing it every day can be hard. I’m so grateful for our wonderful community of stitchers. Thank you for being part of it. Take care and stay well, my friend!
      XOXO!
      Ellen 🙂

      Reply
  7. Sara Glassman

    June 19, 2020 at 8:35 am

    Thank you, Ellen. That was beautifully put.

    Reply
    • Ellen Johnson

      June 19, 2020 at 9:57 am

      Awww… sweet Sara! Thank you for your note. It means the world to me! I hope you’re doing well – and staying well. I think of you often and would love to catch up with soon.
      Take care of yourself, sweet friend!
      Sending you lots of love…
      XOXO!
      Ellen 🙂

      Reply
  8. Ellie Bellantoni

    June 19, 2020 at 8:48 am

    Thank you so much for your comments. I so agree with you. I feel that I am so fortunate to know you. This world is a better place if we can love and help one another, especially in this world that we now live in. Thank you for being such an inspiration to us all.

    Reply
    • Ellen Johnson

      June 19, 2020 at 9:59 am

      Dearest Ellie,
      Thank you for your kind note and for your support. The feeling is mutual – I am truly blessed to count you among my friends. Love is, indeed, the answer to conquering all of the evil in this world. Thank you for sharing your light with others…
      Sending you all the love!
      XOXO!
      Ellen 🙂

      Reply
  9. Susan

    June 19, 2020 at 1:05 pm

    Thank you Ellen! What you said rings so true-especially in light of our shares faith. I struggle as I feel like I need to “do something.” But as you said, perhaps my something to do is just being kind to each person I meet. I live in New York state, and we have to wear masks inside any establishment. What bugs me is how people are wrongly wearing their masks-many do not cover their nose. That renders it unsafe to all of the people they encounter. God bless! So glad to have found you during the COVID quarantine!

    Reply
    • Ellen Johnson

      June 19, 2020 at 4:06 pm

      Hi Susan!
      Thank you so much for taking the time to write. I’m so happy you found me, too. It’s truly a joy to have so many new friends. That’s one silver lining to the Covid cloud.
      And I think wearing masks incorrectly must be a universal problem. I see it here, too. I just try to keep my distance. 🙂
      Take care, sweet friend, and have a wonderful weekend!
      XOXO!
      Ellen 🙂

      Reply
  10. Anne

    June 19, 2020 at 6:01 pm

    I love your approach, Ellen.

    I have always believed in evolution over revolution, using my ears at least as much as my mouth, and being civil to those who disagree with me, or with whom I disagree. But I do not know that I believe that love will always win. Sometimes sweet reason also requires some strong words and actions. I keep it out of the needlework sites, but I feel that I must speak out against injustice and then I am not always a sweet old lady. I suppose most of us feel the same way on that, without really agreeing on the definition of “injustice.”

    Reply
    • Ellen Johnson

      June 25, 2020 at 9:00 am

      Thank you for your kind note, Anne. I appreciate you taking the time to write – and for sharing your thoughts with me. You always have the most thoughtful and thought-provoking things to say.
      Using our ears and eyes more than our mouths is something that we all need to aspire to… after all, we have two eyes, two ears, and one mouth. 😉
      2020 has definitely been a year like no other – at least not that I can remember.
      Thank you, again and have a terrific Thursday!
      XOXO!
      Ellen 🙂

      Reply
  11. Joyce Klejbuk

    June 24, 2020 at 7:14 pm

    So appreciate your thoughtful remarks, Ellen. Yes, it is difficult to live the way of love. If we each would focus on being our best selves, the self our Creator intends us to be, we might find it an easier path. We all have gifts given especially to us to use as best we can. As you say, it is our gift to use those gifts in return for the life we are given. As our Bishop Michael Curry says, May God Love you, May God Bless you and May God hold us ALL in those Almighty Hands of Love.

    Reply
    • Ellen Johnson

      June 25, 2020 at 9:03 am

      Thank you, Joyce – for your kind note and for the reminder about Bishop Curry’s blessing. I wholeheartedly agree that our first responsibility is to see to it that we’re living as the best versions of ourselves. Very wise words, my friend. Thank you for sharing them.
      XOXO!
      Ellen 🙂

      Reply

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