YOU are part of a pretty awesome story!

we were all dressed up that evening. sequins, gold skinnies, booties, little black dresses, hair done, lips glossed and a lot of jewelry. excitement was in the air. new friendships had been formed. relationships that had been fb messages & texts were now true in the flesh. high fives, tears and loads of encouragement between us. katy perry, ellie goulding & sara bareilles the background tunes to three days together. montana to california to florida & everywhere in between was represented and of course a mighty big dose of texas all spending the weekend together. a sisterhood if you will. texas hill country was our landscape. we came with our different beliefs & convictions. we shared our hearts & our hurts, achievements and victories, failures and misses, and a healthy dose of laughter. jennie allen challenged us to live called, not driven. jen hatmaker encouraged us to keep on dreaming big.

jessica, vision caster and full of an overflowing amount of contagious enthusiasm, truly is changing the world…and leading over 400 of us ( there was less than 25 when i joined the team) to do the same. it was the night of our much anticipated spring line reveal. such a highpoint to come together like that!! a mountaintop experience for sure.  the next morning each of us would board plane or hop in a SUV full of friends and begin our journey back home, to keep on keeping on. but that night we felt empowered, encouraged and truly a part of a big story being written right now!

sometimes it can feel a little lonely without all of them sitting right beside me. times when i earnestly wish and pray that i’m doing it well. you know what i mean? like i want everyone i text and ask to partner with me, to join in with me and link arms together, to respond with something along the lines of …. “absolutely! i thought you’d never ask!” sometimes they do. but that’s not always the case. and i get it. i do. we’re busy. there’s soccer and homework and feelings of inadequacy and i can’t keep a clean house. i get it. i promise i get it. i’m by no means trying to guilt anyone into anything. no way jose.

but here’s what i get as well.

i committed to pray for noonday every singe day this year. not pray that i’ll make bank. that’s not why i joined noonday. not at all. but that i’ll be a good steward for noonday. i’ll use my time wisely. i’ll be an enthusiastic voice for our artisans. i’ll share and purchase and tell their stories of hope and of overcoming.  i used to be so afraid to ask anyone to host a show. completely didn’t want to bother anyone or be that person.  but then i applied for my first passport. i nervously hopped on a plane to guatemala, took motion sickness medicine for 5 days and rode in a boat across lake atitlan and i stood in a circle with artisans who cried and thanked us for doing what we do. that is what i get now. once i know them, i can’t unknow them. i see their faces and their huge smiles in my minds eye every single time i think of noonday. i’m a voice for them & for their work. and you are too!!

guatemala 1002

& this is the room where we stood & cried & were blessed beyond measure by these artisans. epic moment for me.

21

so it may look like your basic social sales company. it’s not. it may look like funky “i don’t wear jewelry like that” jewelry. hosting a trunk show may seem like too much planning, or i don’t know enough people, or i’m not an entertainer so i don’t want to host a show. but that’s not it. and i’m learning all of that right alongside you.

i hope you look at these handmade pieces that represent real people like aida, bukenya, renal, coral, and ana who’s lives are different now. not defined by HIV. not defined by poverty. they are real live people–i’ve touched them. i’ve eaten meals with them. real people who are making a living wage, a sustainable income because of YOUR purchasing power. i look it at like this–their beautiful craft, their beautiful jewelry is just the icing on the cake–you are helping someone like ruth have a roof over her head and not having to dig for food in the trash.  i just love that companies that give-back like noonday are around. i love that a generation of jessica honeggers are alive & living a calling and that YOU & ME–we get to link arms with them and join in the story. we are called in to do something.  and ya’ll, it sure doesn’t have to be noonday jewelry. i’m not all my way or nothing at all, i’m just sharing my highway with you. 😉

i’m a wife & a mom. i’m an artist and a photographer. i love jesus. i drop the ball, let down friends and family and sometimes i forget to return phone calls.  i have dirty baseboards and terrible meal planning skills. i’m intimidated by hosting and feeding a large group of people. i drink alot of diet coke, spend too much money and i sometimes curse. but. i’m also an advocate for aida, bukenya, renal, coral & ana. i’m a voice for them. i’m an ambassador with noonday and i consider it one of the most amazing chapters in my own story. not because of anything i have done, but because despite myself and my failures God invited me in on this story and you’re invited in right along with us!!

i wish each of you were in that candlelit room with us in the texas hill country that evening. i wish you could have heard jalia, our lead artisan and sister in christ, who flew in all the way from uganda that evening. she thanked us ya’ll. you & me. she thanked us with her incredible beautiful accent and joyful spirit because her life is different.  i wish you had been there. and you can…open your home and invite your friends so that an ambassador can come share this story. everyone loves to help someone. and the freakin’ cool thing is, you can do just that & look fabulous in some of the prettiest jewelry & accessories i’ve ever seen.

thank you for listening to my heart. i appreciate you guys so much. and in my minds eye–in my heart–you are all there with me that night in your sequins and little black dress ( or yoga pants forthelove) high fiving, hugging and laughing…we’re all together in this story! we are!

head over today & check it out. it’s GORGEOUS! i seriously love so many of these gorgeous pieces. here are my four favorites!

~~~

1. kismet day bag.

good. ness. i’m a self confessed bag snob and i can NOT wait for this baby to arrive in atlanta!  &yes, that’s casey wiegand. 

1 paigeknudsen.com

2. botanical bag.

these bags were jaw droppers and recipients of many ooohs & aaaahs that evening!

gah!! it’s so fun! also shown is the gossamer necklace. gorgeous. the end.

2 paigeknudsen.com

3. fusion necklace

we traveled to guatemala this fall & worked with our beaders and distributors to help create some gorgeous new pieces! this is one of them!!

3 paigeknudsen.com

4. tushabe necklace

second only to the kismet bag shown above, this is my favorite jewelry piece in the new line! named for Tushabe, one of our Ugandan artisans whose smile could light up a city block! ( this image was run through the waterlogue app)

Painted in Waterlogue

Noonday  LOGO

February 20, 2014 - 3:41 pm

Jennifer Pighini - I love the new spring pieces! I just might have to figure out a way to do another show. I almost always get comments when I wear my Noonday pieces and I LOVE being able to share what this amazing company is doing in the lives of women around the world!

February 20, 2014 - 3:45 pm

Melissa - I love all your Noonday stories. Wish I had the guts to just jump in and try to sell this here in Iowa! I have been to so many of the places the artists are from and understand this poverty. Plus it’s gorgeous stuff. I want that bag BAD!

February 20, 2014 - 4:17 pm

Alecia - I looked at the collection before I read your post…I’m in LOVE with that Kismet bag.

February 20, 2014 - 4:33 pm

Jackie - So excited for next Thursday!!!! The new collection is gorgeous! 🙂

February 20, 2014 - 4:57 pm

giosmama2626 - Holy Smokes there are some awesome new items. My wishlist is growing so quickly. I’ll have to look with more detail over the weekend when work pressures aren’t so intense. I can tell that I’m going to LOVE pretty much everything.

May I ask you about the wooden oval tray? Do you have it? If so, what are you thoughts on it? Also, I notice that there isn’t any pretty journals or anything this go round. How come?

XOXO

February 20, 2014 - 5:04 pm

Natalie - It’s all so beautiful… the jewelry, the artisans, your hearts for Jesus… so beautiful! Thank you for being YOU and for living your calling! You’re amazing and I’m so glad we’re friends! Can’t wait to host a Spring Collection Truck Show! Woohoo!

February 22, 2014 - 2:36 pm

Susan W - As usual you WOW me by what words you put down in all honesty to us and by your heartfelt thoughts and your photos!
Will have to reread as I often do what you have recently blogged as it means more each time.
Thank you for enlightening all of us!

February 24, 2014 - 7:38 am

when you feel like your little isn’t very much at all » simple thoughts from Paige Knudsen Photography - […] week i shared with you some thoughts about my passion with noonday and how YOU are a part of this story. it was sorta lengthy so today […]

July 8, 2014 - 6:19 am

dreaming an absurd dream » simple thoughts from Paige Knudsen Photography - […] not really. passionate about lifting others & sharing stories. passionate that our little really does make a difference? you better believe […]