Monday, October 6

proud friend*

swirly girl prepping for the show

stacy love watching swirly do a reading from her book

stacy, alex, me, swirly & anne

stacy, me, mccabe, alex & swirly

A week from yesterday, I drove north to Los Angeles early in the morning to go help support two of my closest friends for their gallery event. Morning is my favorite time to take a long drive; windows down, crisp, cool air, music softly playing, coffee in hand. I had many thoughts whirling around in my head but most of them were about my girlfriends and how blessed I am to have the tribe surrounding me that I do.

I was arriving early to help my dear soul sister Stacy set up for her first show. She had this brilliant idea to use vintage bottles to showcase her gorgeous jewelry. I have lots of vintage bottles!! I'm in!! So, I boxed them all up and took them on their first trip to West Los Angeles!

I didn't expect to get the treat of spending the morning with both of my girly rockstars before the big show. While Stacy and I were fitting pendants to bottles and she was filling out cards, Swirly was hanging huge hand written signs and stringing vintage papers, photos and book pages along the walls. Music was playing. We were twirling. The gallery owner brought out the cider to cheers these two goddesses. It was such a treat to love on them and settle their nerves before the big day began.

So many times I sat back and observed them and felt an awe inspiring sense of pride for all the very hard work they have put their energy into to arrive at this place. Swirly with her amazing book and gorgeous pieces of art. Stacy with her soulful, intuitive gems (how magical is it that each of them find their way to whomever is supposed to receive the affirmation carved into the metal?). I have watched both of them unfold and blossom over the past year in a way that they are empowering themselves to live an authentic life...true to who they are and what they are passionate about.

All day, as dear friends came to support, to laugh, to lift them up, to cry, to hug, to share, to gather and circle, I witnessed all of it with a lump in my throat. It's strange to grasp that all the pain I have been through the last four years, has in a way led me to this point, with these friends that have circled me during this time and have allowed me to walk with them on their own journeys. How we've all taken the muck, the lessons, the trials, as well as the joys, the bliss, the triumphs and transformed all of it into our own unique pieces of art.

If you want to feel like you're walking through Swirly's book and hanging out on a vintage bottle with Stacy's gems...do check out the online gallery I put together for them (Make sure your speakers are on to hear Heavenly Day by Patty Griffin and wait for the gallery to load, then click once on the page with your mouse to activate the arrow keys on your keyboard to move from image to image).

Swirly did a video of the day...which brought me to huge tears:

(song in video is "Serpentine" by Kate Havenevik)

You'll totally feel the love and support felt throughout the day.


Blogger Allison said...

How beautiful! I love the sparkly photos. Looks like a magic day with your friends.

October 6, 2008 at 9:52:00 AM PDT  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

simply gorgeous.

your photographs are magical.

October 6, 2008 at 10:42:00 AM PDT  
Blogger Silvia said...

Magic drips from every photo.


October 6, 2008 at 12:43:00 PM PDT  
Blogger pERiWinKle said...

Oh Denise! Yes! yes! Yes!
I can totally feel the love and support just looking at the photos. Must have been 'living in a dream' being there!
And you my friend, have again, like many a time before, showed what a magnificant photographer you are!
These are gorgeous! and the slideshow...magically real!

Every time you here the magical 'click' of the camera, your heart open even more and love pour out! xx

October 6, 2008 at 1:32:00 PM PDT  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

what a gift to see the photos from their special day ~ for someone who couldn't be there this was perfect. thank you and what a bunch of beauties!!!


October 6, 2008 at 1:48:00 PM PDT  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

your photos are delicious. congratulations on such wonderful work and to your friends for their gorgeous show and to ALL of you for being there to celebrate the loveliness! take care

October 6, 2008 at 1:52:00 PM PDT  
Blogger Pen said...

the gallery is gorgeous. thank you for transporting me there. xx

October 6, 2008 at 2:03:00 PM PDT  
Blogger gem said...

sweet*ness. thank you for introducing me to "Heavenly Day" by Patty Griffin...

October 6, 2008 at 5:28:00 PM PDT  
Blogger Jennifer said...

Oh my goodness what a wonderful video. You can really feel the love. It brought tears to my eyes as well. Thank you for sharing this special day with us.

October 6, 2008 at 5:48:00 PM PDT  
Blogger Amy said...

I love the on-line photos!! Beautiful!

October 6, 2008 at 7:42:00 PM PDT  
Blogger Stacy said...


i still haven't been able to write about this day for all the swelling emotions of love + gratitude i have surrounding it all.

i will never be able to thank you and swirly enough for that day, but thankfully your pictures and her video tell the story in such a beauty-FILLED way.

you, and your bottles, and your pictures, and your energy, and your presence were such a gift ~ i am still swooning.

i love you so,

October 6, 2008 at 11:08:00 PM PDT  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Dear Denise, I have been following your blog for a long time now and decided today was the day to finally thank you! That slide show you prepared is heavenly, I have literally been listening to the song and watching the pictures for most of my morning. Thanks so much for sharing!

October 7, 2008 at 2:13:00 AM PDT  
Blogger Swirly said...

Having you there made the day especially magical and beautiful, and your photographs - as always - captured the sparkle that carried us throughout the entire day. I love you.

October 7, 2008 at 7:37:00 AM PDT  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

love the photos & video! you have an amazing tribe.

October 7, 2008 at 9:39:00 AM PDT  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Ah, perfect read for me today....thank you dear...I love Stacys new gems...the HOPE one has been marked in my Etsy favorites! I need that....I need that everyday reminder.... : ) I know you relate!
xo loves

October 7, 2008 at 12:48:00 PM PDT  
Blogger Stacy said...

becca ~

i just happened to read your comment here. i am giving away the hope necklace this month. go over to my blog for details, perhaps you will be the lucky one this month! good luck.


October 7, 2008 at 4:23:00 PM PDT  
Blogger Unknown said...

Just wanted to invite you to check out my blog to see the award I gave you.

I always enjoy reading your posts! Thanks.

October 8, 2008 at 8:08:00 AM PDT  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

girls are amazing. girl friends even more so. thanks for sharing this :)

October 8, 2008 at 9:57:00 AM PDT  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

You are surrounded by so much beauty! Loved the slide show (my God - your photos just keep getting better and better). Loved the video (so great to see you in action with your camera). Would you happen to know what song is playing in the video? So lovely.

October 8, 2008 at 3:28:00 PM PDT  
Blogger jenica said...

your words here are so poignent. your journey has taken you to right here and has given you some of the most amazing friends. you can't plan life, if you/we/i had gotten everything you/we/i asked for immediately... look at how much you/we/i would have missed out on.

you are beautiful girl, truly from the core beautiful.


October 9, 2008 at 8:51:00 AM PDT  
Blogger Sueberry said...

Denise, your photos never cease to amaze me! I'm a long time fan & friend of Stacie's and just felt like I wanted to tell you how remarkable your work is and how much I truly admire it. Hope to meet you someday in person & thanks for being at the gallery to document the day for those of us that could not attend. :) XOXO

October 10, 2008 at 1:05:00 PM PDT  

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