One of the best things about having the brick and mortar store, Loverly Cottage, was the amazing women that graced the doorway. Their generosity of time and willingness to learn how to paint furniture to help out one of my favorite charities, the Stepping Stones Network, turned a volunteer weekend into an incredible outpouring of generosity and love.
Let me back up a bit. I was at a function to benefit Stepping Stones Network, chatting with my friend Colette about the plans for the organization.
The organization works with survivors of sex trafficking and they were in the process of raising money for what they called their “Rest Home”
The Rest Home was a place where survivors of sex trafficking would go to gain the skills to recover from their trauma and work on Stepping Stones to help them in the next chapter of rebuilding their lives.
You can read more about their amazing mission over here.
I asked Colette if they needed anything for the rest home, and we chatted about how they needed to not only raise the funds to sustain the home, but to furnish it as well.
“What do you need? Beds? Tables? Dressers?”
There were some items that had been donated, but they needed more furniture.
I said “it’s a shame you don’t know someone with a furniture store…” with a smile. “Whatever you need, let me know”, and the planning began.
Colette explained that there were some furniture pieces donated, but they needed to be painted.
I had some pieces from the store to donate, too.
My idea was to host a volunteer furniture painting weekend and toiletry drive.
The store had the painting supplies, brushes, paint, tape, and a workroom to spread out, it was the perfect place to hold the event.
I invited the loverly family to come learn how to paint furniture and volunteer their time to work on the pieces for the rest home.
All of the furniture that needed to be painted was brought over to the Loverly Cottage.
To keep with the calm relaxing theme of the rest home, the majority of the pieces would be painted a soft white.
So I mixed up a just a bit of paint.
Ok, a 5 gallon bucket is more than a bit.
We were going to be painting a lot of furniture it needed to make sure we had plenty of paint!
The turnout of volunteers was more amazing than I could have imagined.
The toiletry drive collected items from the wish list for the rest home. It was a celebration of the community giving back.
Mother’s passing the baton to their daughters and teaching them how to be generous of heart and grateful for the gifts we have been given.
Since all the fabulous ladies were generous with their time and willing to get a bit messy, they rolled up their sleeves and got to work.
The work room was BURSTING at the seams with projects
Thankfully the weather was fabulous the entire weekend, so we had a few projects being painted outside, too!
There were so many projects going on at the same time, and we wanted to make sure we could get everything ready. The Stepping Stones Volunteer Weekend turned into a volunteer painting WEEK!
We worked on so many projects from beds to chairs, an accent table, and more.
There were 2 projects that were my favorites.
The first was a bookcase that was going to be turned on its side and used as an entertainment center.
As the ladies in charge of the home design explained how they would be using it, it made me think it needed feet on the cabinet, to make it look more finished.
I was going to run to home depot to purchase bun feet and the hardware, but on my way home I saw this chair on the side of the road that someone was throwing out.
The FEET were exactly what the new entertainment center needed.
I pulled over and luckily the feet were the screw on type.
A perfect gift from the universe.
You can see the hardware on the top of the cabinet.
The cabinet was flipped over to attach the hardware, but it also made it so much easier to paint all those nooks and crannies.
Look how perfect those feet are!
I save the best for last.
But my favorite project that we painted wasn`t a need, it wasn`t a functional piece of furniture, it was something to provide a bit of light and joy.
A doll house.
The majority of the painting was done by the most beautiful mother/daughter duo.
One of our Loverly Ladies, Olga, had some doll furniture from her aunt that passed on.
The doll house ended up looking like a little Loverly Cottage.
The little Loverly Cottage needed something a little extra special, so I took a gold leaf pen and wrote LOVE all around the roof perimeter.
because every home should be surrounded with love.
That is, after all, what the Stepping Stones Volunteer Weekend was about, love.
An amazing group of incredible women coming together
Each one contributing a piece of a puzzle
that makes a home, filled with love.
My heart is still so full of gratitude for these incredible ladies.
Though we may never meet the women who will pass thru the Stepping Stones Network Rest Home, I hope they know that they are surrounded by love.
If you would like to help support Stepping Stones Network, please click on the link to the Butterfly Fund.
Every dollar helps.