Wednesday, February 29, 2012

A Weekend for Celebrating

For my oldest son Mac’s 30th birthday he wanted to get everyone in the family together. So, last weekend we all headed down to Brays! It was such a treat to have everyone there together. We spent the weekend sitting, talking, and just enjoying each other.

Erin made waffles for breakfast using my mother’s OLD waffle iron! Happy 1st anniversary, Erin & Jacob!

(go braves!!)

We had many thing to celebrate! Along with Mac's 30th and Erin and Jacob's 1st, we also celebrated Megan and Lauren's birthdays! Here is a picture of our youngest son Sam and his girlfriend Lauren.

Here is Al in the field where Olive LOVES to run!!

Here is Erin with her horse Gusto - he lives down in Florida with her now.

And of course, our granddaughter Mary was the center of attention all weekend!

Friday, February 24, 2012

What I Eat For Breakfast... Everyday!

(Ok - except on the special occasion that my husband is cooking pancakes)

Non-Fat Greek Yogurt - calcium for healthy bones and protein for energy. We choose greek yogurt because it is made with pure, natural ingredients and less sugars.

Healthy berries for antioxidants! Blueberries are a SUPER FOOD because they help reduce belly fat and risk factors for cardiovascular disease!

Homemade "World's Healthiest Granola" (made by Jeannie - recipe to follow in another blog) - for fiber and protein.

Dash of cinnamon - regulates your blood sugar, a mild anti-inflammatory, good source of fiber, manganese, iron and calcium!

(not pictured) 1 cup of skim milk.

It's your body - you only get one! Be proactive in taking the best care of it you can!

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Our Love of Pancakes!

Since today is Shrove Tuesday, I could not let the day pass without sharing my family's great love of pancakes with you!! Even as a little girl - it was such a treat to have pancakes for breakfast and my mom would make pancake animals for my brothers and me! Or they were encouraging us to create our own animals out of the pancakes before we ate them! So when I recently saw this picture of these elaborate pancake animals - I just had to share it with you!!

And now that I am grown, cooking pancakes happens to be my husband's specialty! He takes great pride in his pancakes and they are each made with a measure of love!

We love to add in fresh blueberries when they are in season!

In fact, pancakes are what Al made for our daughter, Erin, for her last meal in the US - the summer she was leaving to travel around the world for a whole year doing missions. She could have had anything and what did she request? Her daddy's pancakes, of course!

If we MUST eat pancakes anywhere other than our kitchen, we love Cracker Barrel's Pecan Pancakes as a special treat! They are wonderful!!

Basically - We FLIP over pancakes!! How about you?

Monday, February 20, 2012

What I love about Audrey...

Last, but certainly NOT least is our Audrey! I could not think of a sweeter way to end up our week of the Wonderful Women of Winget Art!

Audrey came to work with us as a college intern (from UNC, of course!) and everyone loved her from the first day. I mean really, who couldn't love this face!?

She made herself essential to the studio because not only is she an extremely talented painter, but also an amazing artist on the computer! Audrey has a feel for the layout of fabric design and the many other products. She truly understands how this business works.

Audrey has been given the gift of words, and we always call on her to write verse and thoughts for us. For example, she wrote the verses for the "Blessings" calendar. Her communication skills are such an asset in talking with clients and her note-taking skills are something we have all come to depend on! It is a true treasure to find a young woman who is so creative AND organized and efficient!

When Audrey's husband left for divinity school, we decided she could work from Boston, and now Dallas! This works because of who Audrey is, so devoted and trustworthy. Every morning, as my team gathers around our "meeting table" and we have our standard morning meeting, Audrey is there with us. In spirit and through FaceTime! We still get to see her sweet face every morning while we discuss what jobs need to be done!

And did I mention her great sense of humor??

A quick interview with Audrey:

When & How did you start working with Susan?

I had always heard about my friend CherylAnne's Aunt Susan who was an artist. I grew up in the same church Susan did - her Dad was one of my Sunday School teachers! It was not until college that I finally met Susan and visited her studio as an intern for 2 summers. I fell in love with the artists and the industry - it felt like going home. When Susan offered me a full time position in 2007, I packed up and moved back to Charlotte as quickly as I could!

What's your favorite part of working at Winget Art?

Everyday I look forward to our morning meeting. As a long-distance employee living in Texas, I call in every morning with FaceTime and it gives me a chance to see and talk with everyone at the studio. It is a special time to not only organize our workload, but also share stories and inspirations from our lives outside the studio.

What do you like to do outside of work?

Morning walks with my husband Scott and our dog Doxology, painting, trying new recipes, and hanging out with good friends.

What is your favorite Decorating Tip?

Put art on your walls!!! As a longtime, short-term renter who has lived with many a white wall, I see artwork as an easy way to make a space feel like home. Even better - make your own art to display! My collection of paintings have been a great way to take my decor with me wherever I go! :0)

What's the best advice you've ever been given?

"Always know that you are loved." My grandmother always says this to me. It's a simple message that carries so much weight - it should be shared with everyone!

She is the future of my studio! I love you, Audrey!

Friday, February 17, 2012

What I love about Joan...

Today it is my delight and pleasure to introduce my friend Joan! Joan's passion for being creative combined with her artistic talents and eye for detail have made her a wonderful member of the Winget Art family since 2003.

Joan is an amazing woman who has done EVERYTHING! She is a talented artist who loves traveling, tennis, and almost anything you can think of. She is a devoted wife to Ralph, and mother to their daughter, Lauren. Have you ever seen the commercials for the most interesting man in the world? Well, Joan just might be the most interesting woman in the world! She has been everything from an airline attendant and a basketball coach to an art director for major department stores like Rich's and Belk. Joan always has a funny story from one of her past lives to tell! We tease her about all of the careers she has had, but it is actually just an indicator of her broad range of talent!

Joan is an amazing asset to our studio. She is a very talented artist and does incredible work down to every last detail. When Joan started working here she immediately jumped right in, learning photoshop and computer skills even though her background was in painting. She brings a fresh perspective to our designs and is a delight to work with. I have so much respect for her as an artist, but also as a thoughtful friend who listens and shares her heart so openly everyday.

Joan is an amazing portrait artist who does incredible work!

To see more of her paintings, click here!

Rudy is Joan's furry friend that likes to visit us at the studio sometimes.

We took this silly picture to say thank you to one of our clients for these beautiful flowers. Joan's expression on the far left always makes me giggle!

A quick interview with Joan:

How would you describe your job at Winget Art?
I take Susan's art apart and redesign it to fit products like dinnerware, flags, scrapbook paper, etc. I use photoshop to do this and it is very creative, interesting work.

Favorite color palette?
I am currently decorating with blue green, light green and accents of red.

Decorating tip?
Choose neutral colors for the large expensive items like the sofa and chairs. Use your favorite colors and patterns for the throw pillows and wall colors. Then when you decide you want to change the color scheme of a room, it will be easy and inexpensive.

Favorite Quote?
"The question is not what you look at but what you see." -Thoreau

Best piece of advice you have been given?
When I was young and complaining about my clothes or something else about myself my mother would say, "It will never be noticed on a galloping horse, and that is the only kind you ever ride." In other words - don't sweat the small stuff!

I am so blessed to have you at the studio and as a friend! I love you, Joan!!

Thursday, February 16, 2012

What I love about Beckie...

This morning I am so excited to introduce one of my favorite people - Beckie! Having been friends for a long time, I was so fortunate to have her became a part of the Winget Art family almost ten years ago.

Beckie is an amazing woman with many talents. Without her the studio would not run as smoothly as it does. She performs all kinds of tasks from preparing presentation boards and scheduling appointments to serving refreshments - and all with a wonderful spirit! Her quick wit and humor give us all a fresh perspective on whatever task is at hand. I often describe Beckie as my right - and my left - hand woman!

Beckie is a wonderful hostess and cook, a talented wedding director at our church, and she loves her family dearly. An amazing daughter and mother, she is always there for her parents, 2 sons, and daughter-in-law. Being a true care-giver is definitely one of her spiritual gifts. She took care of her husband, Rob, with her whole heart and is the kind of friend anyone would be so fortunate to have. I am always amazed by Beckie's bright outlook and perspective during even the toughest of times. She handles every situation with grace and always thinks of others before herself. I think it all begins with her faith.

The studio benefits everyday from Beckie's amazing eye for decor. She keeps us decorated for every holiday and arranges all of our product displays.

Beckie is also in charge of a very important task that keeps the studio happy -
serving refreshments every afternoon!

(no we don't have as many refreshments as you see above EVERY day...)

Here she is with her family at her son's wedding - it was a beautiful celebration!

I can't write this post without mentioning her love for our four-legged friends... Beckie loves hunting dogs and has a very special one at home named Lucy. Here is Lucy with her best pal, Beckie's late husband Rob. This dog always has and always will live the good life!!

A quick interview with Beckie -

What is your favorite part of working at Winget Art?
The people I work with and the people I get to meet - I also enjoy serving refreshments!

Do you have a favorite Susan Winget Product?
I love the Keller Charles melamine collections - especially the beach themes. I also love all of the Enchante boxes at Jo-Ann Fabrics.

Decorating Tip?
I like to use something old with something new or modern. This is a tip my son Eric gave me!

Best Advice you've been given?
Always try your best!

Thank you for sharing yourself everyday, Beckie. Your friendship is so very dear to me. I love you!!

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

What I love about Stephanie...

I have had the pleasure of knowing Stephanie since she was a little girl growing up down the street from our farm. We have been through a lot together and I feel so blessed to have her working in my studio! Stephanie is a wonderful mom - so devoted to her husband and children - yet "magically" seems to be in 2 places at once, as she manages to hold everything together at home and at the studio too. A woman of deep faith, I have always respected how much she cares for the people of her church. Her passion for the children's programs there is so inspiring to see.

Stephanie is creative and imaginative in so many ways! Simply put, she "gets it" and understands immediately what needs to be done for any project. I often think that she knows what I'm thinking before I do! Always coming up with new ideas for projects and in social media outlets, Stephanie has taught us to embrace the technology that is essential to the future of the studio. Stephanie is also a true "people person" who communicates beautifully with all of our clients through her laughter and sweet spirit. Years ago, my agent described her as the "heartbeat of the studio" and I could not agree more!

Since it is Valentine's week - I thought I would include this Valentine Stephanie gave Al and I. It has been bent, crinkled, and spilled on over the years - but is far too precious not to hold onto!

Stephanie first worked for me as a babysitter for my 3 kids!
I have said many times that she "raised my children" and I am so proud of all that she instilled in them.

Stephanie always knows how to strike a pose! She keeps everyone in stitches with her funny stories, expressions and wild sense of humor.

Here we are for a studio lunch at one of Stephanie's favorite places -
Cracker Barrel!

Our studio isn't too far from one of Stephanie's favorite places - Carowinds. I came back from an appointment one day to this picture of everyone "playing hookey." Did I mention Stephanie is an extremely talented photoshop artist??

A quick interview with Stephanie -

When and how did you start working at Winget Art?
I grew up on the same road as Susan's family and when I was 12, I started babysitting for her children on a regular basis. I can remember putting her youngest son Sam to bed in his crib and he would ask me to sing him songs about tractors and guns - such is life on the farm, I guess! After her children "outgrew" me, Susan asked if I would like to help out in her art studio tracing images on the light table. The other ladies in the studio called me "Tracy" since that was all I did! Little by little I began to learn the tricks of the trade on the computer and in graphic arts. When I graduated from college, Susan asked me to work for her full time - truly my dream job! I have loved every minute of my time here!

Do you have a favorite Product or Collection?
I love Susan's scrapbooking collections and all of the awesome little embellishments that come with them! I especially love her Botanical collection with K & Company. The purple, teal and green colorway has my name written all over it!

Decorating Tip?
Declutter, declutter, declutter! It makes everything (and everyone) feel better!

Favorite Quote?
"Be cheerful no matter what; pray all the time; thank God no matter what happens. This is the way God wants you who belong to Christ Jesus to live." 1 Thessalonians 5:16-18

Thank you for all of your hard work over the years - I love you, Stephanie!

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

What I love about Mary Beth...

Mary Beth is truly a one-of-a-kind friend! She is so very thoughtful and giving and I have always admired her love for family. A fabulous grandmother and devoted sister, she is the kind of woman that takes care of everyone. And I cannot write this post without mentioning the great chicken pie and lasagna that she makes... it defines comfort food if you're ever in need.

Did I mention that she is a wonderful artist too?? She has an eye for design and is so valuable to the early stages of each painting we create. Outside of the studio she stays busy with many creative projects... from calligraphy (I will always treasure her beautiful gift to my daughter Erin when she addressed her wedding invitations) to painting murals on her grandchildren's walls like the one below.

Mary Beth also loves to create hand-stitched quilts. They are wonderful and I think it ties her love for family and her love for art together in a beautiful way! Below is one of her Baby Bear quilts, she made this one for her first granddaughter Keenan!

The original gang!

Some things never change... pizza remains a lunchtime staple around the studio!

Mary Beth and her husband Bill are tried and true Panthers fans. Yes, she made the Panthers skirt that she is wearing on the far right!

A quick interview with Mary Beth -

What is your favorite part of working at Winget Art?
We laugh all the time!

Do you have a favorite memory?
Having our baby boys just 9 days apart, and then 30 years later having our granddaughters born 2 weeks apart!

What is your personal home dec style?
At my house we love comfortable, cozy, "roll around on the carpet with our grandkids" decor!

Somewhere you have always wanted to go?
Heaven, God willing!

Favorite Quote?
The Serenity Prayer:
God grant me the serenity
to accept the things I cannot change;
courage to change the things I can;
and wisdom to know the difference.
Living one day at a time;
Enjoying one moment at a time;
Accepting hardships as the pathway to peace;
Taking, as He did, this sinful world
as it is, not as I would have it;
Trusting that He will make all things right
if I surrender to His Will;
That I may be reasonably happy in this life
and supremely happy with Him
Forever in the next.

I love you, Mary Beth!
Thank you for all that you give to the life of our studio each day!

Happy Valentine's Day, everyone!!

Monday, February 13, 2012

What I love about Jeannie...

This week I will be posting each day about one of the wonderful women at Winget Art! Over the last two weeks I have had so much fun digging through old photos, reminiscing on the early days of the studio, and interviewing my staff for this series of blogs.

I'm so excited to share the stories of each of these ladies with you!
First up - my dear friend Jeannie who has been by my side from the very beginning!

Simply put, Jeannie is fabulous! She is an extremely talented artist who can paint and draw as beautifully as anyone I know. Her wonderful sense of humor keeps our studio happy and grounded. One of the things I love most about her is that she can always see the bright side of a situation or person. Jeannie is my friend, painting buddy, and travel partner. She always has my back and supports the studio in every way possible. I love how she tells me to "get over it" if I ever feel nervous or insecure and she meets me at the gym three mornings a week whether I want to or not!

Okay, get ready for some 80s hair, y'all... :)

Jeannie and I became instant friends when we met in 1979.

We always had so much fun with Halloween! Jeannie is an incredible seamstress and would always make our costumes herself!

Jeannie as Larry Johnson! Remember the good ole days of the Charlotte Hornets!??

Here is an example of one of her lovely watercolors, she painted this one for her daughter Ana.

Jeannie also has an eye for fabulous and creative home decor. She found this old fireplace mantle and made it into a beautiful headboard.

A quick interview with Jeannie -

How would you describe your job at Winget Art?
It's the greatest job EVER! Always fun and always changing - that's what keeps it interesting!

What's your favorite part?
The family atmosphere and the laughter that constantly surrounds us.

What are your interests outside of work?
Cooking, Wine, Music, Gardening, and Hiking.

Decorating Tip?
Less is more - keep it simple!

Favorite quote?
"The richness I achieve comes from Nature, the source of my inspiration."
~ Claude Monet

I love you, Jeannie! Thanks for the many years of memories -
I can't wait to see what we get into next!