20 years 20 memories - a letter from my friend Karla

 Well friends I must say when I received this from my beautiful friend Karla I cried. 

 “life is not measured by the number of breaths we take, but by the number of moments that take our breath away” - anonymous

It was one of my closest friends who handed me a business card one day with this quote on it and said, you need to visit this shop, “it is so very you and you will love everything about it.”  The card was for a shop called Simple Things, Small Joys, the proprietor was Cathy Penton.  I wasn’t too worried about getting to the shop, it was on the other side of town from where I lived, I was pregnant with my 4th child, 2 kids at school and a beautiful handful of a 2 year old.  Getting to the shop was not a priority, the card was enough.  I loved everything about that business card.  I loved the name of the shop, I loved the quote, I loved the picture on the front and I loved the words.  So into my wallet went the business card, front and centre where the photo is supposed to go, so everyday I could look at it and read that quote.  I must have carried that card around with me for 6 months before I made it into the shop and just like the quote, when I walked through the doors of Simple Things, Small Joys, it was a moment that took my breath away.  My soul knew instantly that this shop was something special.

That was how I came to know of Cathy.  I started following her blog and I was drawn into her beautifully raw and authentic world.  When I read on her blog that she was leaving the shop and handing over the reigns to her lovely business partner, I felt a sense of sadness to think her essence was no longer going to be in Simple Things, Small Joys.  I still visited the shop but it was never quite the same and something had shifted in me so much so that I felt the need to email Cathy.  I needed to tell her that she inspired me with her photography, her designs, her words and her heart and that I missed her.  I never expected to get a reply.  In fact I thought she would most likely read the email, file it in the strange, stalker section and never think of it again.  I did get a reply to my email and that was the start of our most beautiful friendship.   I was there for the start of Cathy Penton Atelier and over the years I have watched the way this amazingly talented woman has lived, loved, created and touched the lives of everyone she comes in contact with.  Her love for her family is fierce and strong and what you see and feel through her blog, her online shop and her social media is in every way who she is.  She is real.  Now not only does she still inspire me as a creative but also as a mum, a wife, a friend and as a woman.  She is my kindred spirit…. my soul mate.

It’s been 10 years since I was handed that business card and it is still in my wallet.  The wallet has changed many times, but the business card never will.  My beautiful Cathy, I cannot remember what life was like without you by my side.  Congratulations on 20 years in business, I am so proud of you and I will forever and always be thankful for simple things, small joys.

Love you to the moon xx  

I am the luckiest person alive to have this gorgeous girl as one my dearest friends and the best sort of family anyone could wish for... I also asked Karla a few fun questions...
If you could describe yourself in one word what would it be?  Present
What inspires you the most?  My children and their open hearts
Black, white or all things earthy…which would you choose and why?  All things earthy.  I am always in awe of and inspired by mother nature and her beautiful tones and textures
If you could rearrange the furniture in one room of your house, what room would it be and why? Our living room because this is the soul of our house and I love changing it to suit the season of our lives 
Favourite quote -take the leap - freefall exquisitely into the heart.  the sky is the limit… (your sky, your limit.)” - Emma Kate