Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Welcome Rachel of My Vintage Verve

I would like to introduce you to Rachel.  She is a wonderful blogger friend I have been lucky enough to meet via blogging.  Her blog is My Vintage Verve.  Rachel has been blogging for as long as I have so we are both newbies navigating through all of this technology while trying to share our passions.  As you will see below, Rachel is incredibly talented at refurbishing old furniture.  She has a great eye for color and would make Annie Sloan proud.  Rachel is a very busy mom of three young boys and she is a teacher.  The fact that she even got a blog off the ground is incredible and I admire her drive!
Please visit Rachel and her blog.  You will notice the design of her blog is refreshing because it is not the typical template which I think is such a nice change.  Read on and see for yourself how wonderful her work is...
What is your day job?
You would think this would be a really easy question to answer, but for me, it’s complicated! First and foremost, I take care of three boys, all of which are elementary age. As most of you know, this is a full time job in itself. I am also a teacher. After my first son was born, I resigned from teaching and was home for about eight years. I went back to teaching a few years ago while my boys were still quite young, and it was pure torture on my entire family. It just wasn’t worth it. So, I resigned (yes again) and have been home for the past two years. Just this year I started subbing a few days a week. I needed an income to help support my newest adventure - My Vintage Verve.  Then I was asked to take a Kindergarten position until the end of the year for a teacher on maternity leave. 
So in between teaching and taking care of my family, I try to find time to paint. It is so much harder blogging now that I am working full time again. I am really trying to learn to accept that I can’t crank out one or two pieces a week anymore. Blogging has absolutely taken a back seat. But, it’s ok! I am really fortunate to have this opportunity to be back in the classroom. This experience will eventually help me make the difficult decision between teaching full time again and trying to take My Vintage Verve to a whole new level. Which one will it be? Even I don’t know that yet!
Why did you start blogging?
Honestly, it’s because I was comparing myself to a friend who is superwoman. I was at a Thirty-One party at her home. The consultant had us go around the room and introduce ourselves and tell everyone how we knew her. It was then, as I was listening to all these incredible stories about how she knew everyone and all of the great things they’ve accomplished together, that I wondered what in the world would anyone say about me? I’m not earning my Master’s degree. I’m not working part-time and running my husband’s company. I’m not training for a marathon or making a conscious effort to eat healthy. I’m just a mom.
Being just a mom wasn’t enough. I am unbelievably thankful that I am a mother and that I can be here for them. But, I had nothing to claim as my own; nothing for anyone to look back on and talk about my interests and talents. I felt I had that when I was teaching but since I was a homemaker again, I felt I had nothing to grab on to or identify with.
So, My Vintage Verve was in the making. I knew that I could do what I read about on other people’s blogs. At some point just last summer I bought a can of ASCP and have never looked back. That decision let me to Carter’s Cottage and to my very own blog. My husband is the one that encouraged me to start a blog. It’s a great way to connect with other people with the same interests as well as promote my business. I’m thrilled with how it is all falling into place!
What is the best thing that has come from blogging?
I have only been blogging for about 5 months. I am a complete novice. So far the best thing that has come out of this is that I have proven to myself that I can overcome my fear of the unknown. You’ll make mistakes and wonder if you should have done something differently, but in the end, it all works out. It’s also been incredible receiving email from people asking me advice about painting or restoring furniture. I still can’t wrap my head around that! I LOVE IT!
What’s playing on your IPOD?
I am technically deficient. Although I enjoy music, it’s way too much for me to work an IPOD. Really, I’m serious. I just listen to the radio or on occasion, listen to tunes on Pandora - daring, I know.  I am one of the few left on the earth that would still consider buying a CD.  I have not purchased a CD in a long time, but, if I went to Target to buy one, it would be Adele or Gotye. I love the song Somebody That I Used to Know. Funky and fun all rolled into one. Gotta love it.

Who would you like to meet?
I should know the answer to this, but, sadly I don’t. I am one of those people that don’t have a lot of favorites (besides food). It’s hard for me to name favorite people, places, books, movies, etc. I like a lot of different things.
If someone made me choose, I think I would have to go with children’s author Brian Selznick. He wrote The Invention of Hugo Cabret. It’s the book the movie “Hugo” was based on. I think the book is much better than the movie! His work not only captivated me but many of my students as well. They went from hating books to begging me and their parents to read more! I wonder if he has any idea how his stories impacted the lives of so many kids. What an incredible feat!
Best Childhood Memory?
My Great Grandparents owned several acres and had a Christmas tree farm. Every Christmas my brothers and I would “help” their customers. We would hand patient customers saws and burlap sacks, tell them what direction the Fraser Firs were, or help collect the money. Our family would always cut our own tree down too. It took me a long time to figure out why we always came home with a “Charlie Brown” tree. My parents would never cut down a good tree for free if my Great Grandparents could make a profit on it. We loved the ones that no one else would.
 Every year at Christmas when I try to persuade my family to love the tree I picked out, my husband reminds me that I still have a special place in my heart for the Charlie Brown trees. Even though we don’t bring my favorite home, those trees fill me with sweet memories.

How do you spend your days off?
I play with my boys. We love going to the movies and having movie nights at home. We play a lot of board games together. Now that the weather is getting nicer, baseball practice is right around the corner. I’ll be at the field watching games at least three days a week. I also love to shop for my next furniture makeover and cool vintage pieces.

If you could choose a place to visit for 3 weeks, where would it be?
I would go to Germany. My mother’s family is from Germany. Her parents came to the United States when they were in their 20’s. My mom learned to speak English when she was thrown into an English speaking Kindergarten classroom. I would love to go visit the small town in which a lot of her relatives still reside. I’d absolutely have to visit a castle or two as well. I tried to learn how to speak German when I was in High School but failed miserably. Mom will have to come with me for my 3 week dream vacation.  How else will I know how to order a beer and schnitzel?

If you could give advice to a new blogger, what would it be?
I am the one that should be asking for advice. I have learned that it’s ok to enjoy the learning process and to make mistakes along the way. There is nothing you can’t fix or do again. I have learned so much about this business, and most importantly, about myself. You usually hear someone say something along those lines and think “Yeah, I’ve heard it before”. But, in all honestly, it’s true. You will learn so much about yourself that sometimes it makes me wonder what else is there about myself I don’t know yet? That’s incredibly exciting and scary at the same time.

I would like to thank Rachel for sharing herself with my readers!  I actually learned that we have a lot more in common than I knew! 
Please show Rachel some love by visiting her blog and leaving her comments on your favorite pieces!  You will make her day!  Find her blog here... My Vintage Verve.

My Vintage Verve
Adorable Rachel


  1. Lisa, I just can't thank you enough for taking the time to feature my blog and my work. I love having a blogging buddy! You have wonderful ideas and I know your blog will grow leaps and bounds because of the creative projects you create. By the way, I love the bunny garland. They look so vintage in the black and white print.

  2. Lisa, another excellent interview, you really should keep going with this interview series - you're getting great answers from people. It's lovely to meet you Rachel, great answers in this interview - honest and heartfelt- going over to check out your blog now!


  3. What a great interview. Thrilled to be your newest follower, and I'm heading over to see more of Rachel's beautiful transformations!!


Readers who leave comments are wonderful!