Tuesday, February 9, 2016

Greater things... Introducing my new ASSISTANT!!

Some days I have to pinch myself because I am so in awe of the way that God has orchestrated the details of my little business. Not because everything has "just happened" but because I am seeing the fruits of so many years of prayers and perseverance.  

One of the most amazing things is, like it says in Ephesians 3:20 "Now unto him that is able to do exceeding abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that works in us", We have these ideas of what "good" things are supposed to look like in our lives, and then He says "I hear what you're saying, but MY plans are for something even greater!"  

This was the case with someone that He has brought into my life! For the past two years, I have been saying that I really need to hire an assistant, and for the past 2 years, business has continued to grow beyond what I can handle on my own.  Now, I have an amazing support staff in my family!  They are always there to help when I am overloaded, but most of them also have other jobs and school. So I began to pray that God would bring me the right person to help me, and He delivered in a way that only He could!  In the short time that I've know her, this girl has become a dear friend & sister with the most beautiful and bold servants heart.  On her first day of training, I explained to her all of the things I may need help with... some fun, some mundane.  Her response was something that gave my heart that final sense of peace.  She said "I don't care what it is, I am just happy to serve you!"
 I am so thankful for this girl and I wanted to take a moment to introduce you to my new assistant, 

Julie Scaduto!  

LDD: A few of your favorite things…
JS: Life verse: Psalm 139:14(NIV) I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well.

Color: Mustard Yellow (I know, weird right??? I blame my grandmother. She had mustard yellow accents in the room I slept in when I went to her house. I guess it just reminds me of her and the beautiful flowers she grew in her flower garden at her house.)

Food & Drinks: Tacos, Tacos, Coffee and did I mention TACOS!  Also, my moms creamy chicken and rice casserole.

Music: This is always changing, but right now I am really into Justin Townes Earl, Rend Collective, Sharon Jones and the Dap-Kings, and Leon Bridges. Basically anything I can sing and dance to I love!

Hobbies: I absolutely love to sing and worship so that's probably my favorite hobby. I also love to go hiking. I love soaking up the presence of God there, just being surrounded by the magnificent beauty that he created is my favorite place to be. Oh, and cooking!!!! I find it extremely relaxing to prepare a meal for my family and friends.

LDD: What made you want to work for Lis Dunn designs?

JS: I love the heart behind the company. I received my first Lis Dunn Designs piece from my boyfriend Brice almost two years ago and it was stamped with one of my favorite sayings "better things are yet to come". He has been telling me about his student's mom who was donating all of the proceeds of one of her designs to help some of his kids get to summer camp so obviously I checked  her out on instagram, pinterest and facebook to see what this lady was all about. I fell in love with Lis's elegant pieces, her passion for helping others and her heart for Jesus. I finally met Lis at the Main Street Market in spring of 2014. After we had chatted for a bit I told her "if she ever needed help with anything to let me know" and she responded with "I actually might take you up on that". I had no idea those words were going to come out of my mouth, but it happened so naturally. I knew at that moment this woman was going to be in my life for a reason. Since then I have had the privilege of getting to know Lis and her becoming a wonderful friend. I am honored to be a part of this wonderful business. Lis truly is the real deal. She loves God not only through her daily life but especially through her business. That is something that I admire and am glad to be a part of.

LDD: How do you feel you can best contribute to this company?

I love accessories, fashion and all things pretty(especially gold glitter) so I know this is a great fit. Haha but honestly, I am so excited to come alongside Lis and help her business grow and flourish the way I know God has plans for it to. My brain is already filling with ideas and inspiration for pieces and photoshoots. I am also a planner and decorator so I cannot wait for our shows! I am most excited to be making pieces that are affecting the lives of those wearing them just like I know her pieces do for me.
Welcome to Lis Dunn Designs, Jules!!

Tuesday, January 5, 2016

Dear Sweet Teenage Girl

This is for you, sweet girl
I remember what it was like to be a teenage girl... and oh how I would love to go back and embrace that girl and love her more and tell her how beautiful and loved and treasured she was. That the body she was so ashamed of was actually a beautiful vessel for running races, giving the biggest hugs and carrying the very best gifts that she could ever imagine!  

I remember feeling like I wasn't enough.
I remember the pain of my parents divorce and the first time I really felt depressed and wondered if anyone would miss me if I were gone.
I know what it is to feel the loneliness and shame of an eating disorder.
I remember feeling like if I didn't fit a certain mold, I would be an outcast and disliked.
and how alone I felt when all of my friends were headed off to college and I was going to be a teenage momma!
oh, there were so many times that I fell short and disappointed people and compromised on things that I knew I shouldn't.

but you know what...I know this sounds crazy now, but can I tell you how incredibly thankful I am for all of those struggles!  I have seen God use every one of them for good!

There are some truths that I have learned through the pain and the celebrations that someone needs to hear right now...

1. You are SO not alone on this journey, even though it feels that way sometimes!

2. Those problems that you are facing right now... I know they seem like the end of the world, but they are not going to destroy you! You have so much more strength within you than you can even imagine!

3. Those bully's {or maybe even "friends"} that tear you down... They're unhappy with themselves and it likely has absolutely nothing to do with you.  Do not give them power over your life!

4. YOU be the one to build you up!   Don't rely on a man {or anyone else} to do that for you! Write out and repeat words or scripture that inspire you to be your very best!

5.  Seek out friends that will call you higher!  Surround yourself with people who not only want to listen to your struggles, but will celebrate your successes.  And more importantly, YOU be that person to others.  It will have an amazing impact on your life! 

5. As long as you have breath in your body, there is an amazing purpose for your life.  It may not be obvious now, but please trust me on this one!

You are so very loved and treasured!

Wednesday, December 30, 2015

One Little Word 2016

Hello lovelies!  I hope that you had the most amazing Christmas and that your heart {and body} have found a little peace and rest.  I know I am enjoying a little bit of down time with my loved ones!  

I so look forward to this time of year!  While I love the season and Christmas and family and all of the celebrating, I also love the calm after the storm... reflecting on the blessings and also recognizing what I DON'T want to do the next year.  I know this time of year gets hectic for most people. This year seemed extra stressful to me. I hate to even say that out loud because I am just so darn sick of the glorification of BUSY!! 

In case you are new to my blog and business {welcome!!}, each year, for the past 7 years, I choose ONE LITTLE WORD to focus on in the year to come.  FOCUS is not something that comes naturally to me, so I know that I need to be intentional.  My words in the past have seemed very easy to land on and they have been BIG and EXCITING and FULL OF PASSION.  Choosing my word for 2016 has NOT been easy.  I would land on a word and be convinced that I had found it, then a few days later, feel strongly about another powerful word. Some of these words included... JOY, BOLD and CONFIDENCE.  Those are fun, right!? They just weren't meant to be MY word.

There is this verse... it just kept persisting... I wasn't sure why, but it just kept coming back to mind

I was reminded of situations over the past few months that needed attention, situations where there was busy-ness, but no peace.  Situations where I allowed negativity to over-take my thoughts.  Why is it that we can have an overwhelming amount of support, encouragement and praise from most, but when there is one "not-so-kind" word spoken about us or our work, THAT is what we dwell on.  I was not okay that I wasted any amount of time and effort entertaining thoughts that were not life-giving.  I knew that if any of my girlfriends expressed these feelings to me, I would immediately remind them how loved and valued they were and that those hurtful words from one person should hold no merit!  Why would I not have the same standards for myself. I am the daughter of the most high God and His plans for me are TRUTH!  That is when it hit me.  I was not hearing His words because there was too much noise!  Both literal noise and the noise of busy-ness!  

There was a sense of peace as I landed on my one little word for 2016...

While I will also strive to be purposeful and passionate and brave and bold, my primary focus this year will be to just "be" and "have" quiet.  That means eliminating the "noise" that keeps my heart from hearing God's voice.  That means taking the time to do some yoga and meditation. It will mean turning off the TV and Radio sometimes.  It will mean slowing down to really put life in perspective when necessary.

Friend, I pray that this year YOU will be blessed and that new adventures will find you.
I pray that you would be intentional about your life and not take one moment for granted.
You are so loved!

I have created this 14k Gold-filled piece for myself for this years word...
{I will be listing this, along with other new designs throughout the week!}

Friday, November 6, 2015

You Are Loved: A Campaign to Bring Awareness for Suicide and Depression

Today I attended the funeral of a dear High School friend.  A friend whose bright light, smile and positive attitude would encourage and uplift everyone who would ever have the pleasure of knowing her. She was a friend whose love for Jesus was evident in the way that she lived and loved others, even when it wasn't the "popular" thing to do!  I so admired her for that! I regret that I never took the time to tell her how much her faith meant to me all those years ago.

Sadly, this wasn't the first funeral that I had been to where Suicide was the cause of death.  It isn't the first time that suicide has affected my life and it is definitely not the first time that depression has had a hold on someone that I love.  Every time something like this happens, it's heartbreaking.  It is so hard to make sense of and there are always so many questions that may never be answered on this side of eternity.  What I do know is that God is able to use anything for good.  We want to love those close to us a little harder. Hug our babies a little tighter.  Pay closer attention to those around us that seem a little "off".

Years ago I read an article, one that I wish I had kept because it has been so impactful on my life. You know, those words that jumped right off of the page as if it were written just for you to read at that very moment.  While I don't remember the magazine or all of the details in that article, this is what still resounds with me years later.  It was an interview with a woman that lived in a third-world country and she said this {I'm paraphrasing} "In the west {that's us!}, you pray that God would take away your painful situation.  Here in the East, we pray that God would give us the strength to deal with the situation.  We pray that the pain would not be wasted"


I can't tell you how much these words have changed my life!

God, please do NOT let this pain be wasted!,

This resonated LOUD when I learned about my dear friend's passing.
I am not going to allow this to be "just another sad story"  "just another tragedy"
This is someone's daughter, best friend, mother, wife, teacher, encourager...  
This could be anyone's everything. 
The world now looks different to those who are grieving. It's no longer whole.  Songs no longer have the same meaning.  Even the grass and the trees seem different. Just breathing in and out is a task that takes intention.
I want to do something.  I HAVE TO DO SOMETHING!

When someone is diagnosed with Cancer or MS or any other debilitating disease, the whole community rallies around them to plan fundraisers and bring awareness about that disease.
When someone is diagnosed with depression, they hide it in shame.  It's a lonely place.  

I know that I alone can't do everything... but I can do something!

How I could use the gifts that I've been given to be a blessing in this situation?

{All items can be purchased HERE}

I had been working on some "you are loved" pieces for my holiday collection and I knew that those words were meant for this cause.  These pieces will be released early and 50% of the sales will be donated in this way: 25% of each sale will go to a memorial set up in Larinda's honor and 25% will go to the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention.   This site has amazing resources to educate yourself on depression, warning signs of suicide, risk factors, statistics and help in your area.

If you are struggling, please don't keep it to yourself.  Share your feelings with someone! You are so loved and your life matters.  If you suspect that someone else may be struggling, don't ignore it.  If you're not sure what to do, find someone that can help.

Big Hugs and blessings to you!
You are loved!

Friday, October 23, 2015


"She believed she could, so she did!"

Dear beautiful, wonderful girl, 
That's right, I mean YOU! Do you have any idea... 
How amazing you are?
How smart you are? 
How talented you are?
How BRAVE you are?

There are so many things about you that the world needs more of!  What are you waiting for!

Steph and I have been working on this idea for a good while now... it's funny how the most beautiful things in life come from some of the most painful things.  The concept of "Brave" was born of some really trying circumstances... trials that looked different in each of our lives.  Even in the midst of adversity, both of our hearts desired to make beauty from what seemed broken...To rise above our circumstances that seemed hopeless...To trust that His plan was so much better and so much more fulfilling than anything we could hope for in taking the easy route...To move past the fears that kept us from being our very best version.  This was going to take bravery.


 There are women everywhere, just like us, with a story to tell.  With burdens that seem so big to carry.  With dreams that they are too afraid to explore.  Is that you?  What is it that has you paralyzed?  Can we just sit and chat for a minute?  Are you ready {go ahead, grab that coffee!}  Please hear me out on this...

You are bigger than that job loss.  There is something better than you had imagined just waiting for you, but you have to go get it!

That divorce that turned your world upside down and completely stole your confidence does not define you.  Your beauty and value are not found in a man.  YOU are so very loved and treasured.  If it means saying those words in the mirror until you believe it, then do that!

That child that is sick was given to you with very careful and intentional consideration.  It's not going to be easy, but every precious moment that you are present and choose to live life to the fullest will be so worth it. You GET to be his/ her mother and your fierce love is an inspiration to all that know you!

That dream you've had since you were little, you know, the one that keeps popping up.  The one that brings a sparkle to your eye and passion in your soul every time you think about it!  What is holding you back from pursuing that?  Your age? Money? People might think you're crazy? They may not like it?  Who cares!  At the end of the day, you have to be true to YOU! It might take a lot of hard work?  Heck yeah it's going to take a lot of hard work!  Nothing rewarding ever comes easy!  

What is it in YOUR life that is going to take some Bravery to move forward?

You have what it takes inside of you to be BRAVE, you just have to choose to access it!

We are so very excited to announce our 3rd and newest candle in our collaboration series. 

BRAVE was created with a beautiful blend of fresh scents chosen to inspire and uplift.
{including top notes: white grapefruit, petitgrain, tangerine and clementine.  Mid notes: mandarin, mimosa petals, geranium, lemon and basil.  Base notes: Bamboo, juniper berries and musk}

The candle comes with a removable, hand-stamped, stainless steel charm that says "she believed she could so she did" along with an arrow charm that can be worn on a necklace or attached to a keychain once the candle has burnt out!

Each candle is 9oz with a 70+ burn time 

If you are interested in purchasing one of our candles, please visit 

In Store at:
530 Windsor Road
Loves Park, Il  

Saturday, January 24, 2015


I have found the one whom my soul loves
Song of Solomon 3:4

Doesn't the sound of that just make your heart smile!

I have always loved this verse and as I've gotten older, have been more and more intentional about trying to live in it's truth.

I think we sometimes see the big screen and assume that if our relationship doesn't model that type of connection, we must either be with the wrong person or we're not worthy of love.

I assure you, God has other plans.

I think of the person that I was when Dennis and I were first married 16 years ago. Thank you Lord that he stuck around!! I have always been in love with this man, but I was selfish, independent and more often asked "what can you do for me?" rather than "what can I do for you?" 

I love the way that it's said in the NLT of Genesis 2:18  "Then the Lord God said, 'It is not good for the man to be alone.  I will make a helper who is just right for him." 

I GET to be that helper to my husband!


I didn't always see it as such.  I've {slowly} discovered that it's not about  getting what you want in that relationship, but about growing together, encouraging each other and loving one another, even when the road is bumpy.  and if you have been with someone for any amount of time, there WILL be bumps in the road, but the way you handle those bumps together will only build strength in that relationship.

I understand that some of you may not be in that relationship yet, but please take heart... God has it under control.  Don't rush to get there, trust that in His time,  YOU will certainly find that ONE that your soul loves!

As many of you know, I have had the AMAZING pleasure of collaborating with Steph of One Love Candle and Bath on our now second candle together.


We wanted to create something that focuses on this kind of LOVE and encourages nurturing and embracing that love.

SO IN LOVE was born!

It features a complex blend infused with six essential oils featuring a rich base of amber, vanilla, musk and sandalwood with lively top notes of jasmine, lavender and orange. The beautiful glass jar is adorned with a hand-stamped, keepsake tag that says "I have found the one whom my soul loves." that can be removed and worn on a necklace or added to a keychain.

We are so proud of and excited about this collaboration!

 Steph is absolutely amazing at what she does and I am so in love with this scent! It appeals to both men and women and is just the perfect, romantic blend.

Once again, we had the pleasure of working with the amazing Kelly Hubert on photography.  I am so very thankful for this trio of ours!  Kel just gets it!  We tell her our vision and she runs full speed ahead to make it even more amazing than we even had planned.  She has the most beautiful heart and is so dedicated! YOU are such a blessing, my friend!

In addition, a HUGE shout out to DC Estate Winery in South Beloit for allowing us to do our photo shoot there!! This place is GORGEOUS!!!  If you are in need of a beautiful wedding location, or you just want to get away and do some wine tasting... {they even have art and wine classes} Please check them out!!

Steph and I pray that you will love and embrace our latest project!!  That you will spend time nurturing the love that is right in front of you and remember what a treasure that is!
You are so very loved!

You can find SO IN LOVE for sale at these locations...

Infinitely Sweet in Rockford, Illinois
Milkman's Wife in Rockton, Illinois
The White Trunk in Rockford, Illinois
The Mission Shop at Rockford First

Online at...




Saturday, December 27, 2014

One Little Word 2015: PURPOSE

1. the reason for which something is done or created or for which something exists.
1. have as one's intention or objective
This will be my 6th year choosing a "word of the year"... my "one little word", if you will!
I have loved the process of deciding on the most poignant word to sum up my focus and objective for the year to come.
2014 was an eye-opening year.  In a good way!  My word for 2014 was "confidence" and the year before it was "choose"  I really tried to be intentional about my choices. 
Primarily, the choice to allow God to direct my path. 
This was a BIG one! 
Giving up control is not in my nature.  Does that come easy to anyone?
Because of that one choice;  my family was strengthened; my business was blessed & new, beautiful & encouraging friends came into my life.
I don't know if it is the fact that I'm getting older or wiser {or a combo of both} but I have grown to value and embrace the fact that I was created for a purpose. 
Life is so much sweeter when your accept that!
God does not make mistakes and I have learned that His plans are ALWAYS better than my own!
My word for this year... PURPOSE... came to me a little over a month ago.  I waivered back and forth between a few other strong contenders, even landing on the word "Imua" which is Hawaiian for "move forward".  I even shared this one with a few family members, but with every other word that I chose, I kept coming back to "purpose".   It just embodied all that I wanted to focus on moving in to the New Year.  
Last night I came across this as I was going through my Pins on Pinterest and it was the confirmation that I needed!! 
This is it!
I want to use what I have and what I can do to help others!
I want to be purposeful in my relationships.
I want to live each day knowing there is a purpose for it.
I want to encourage others to embrace their purpose.
Have you given thought to the idea of "one little word" 
If you haven't yet decided on a word and need a little push, here are a few words to inspire you...
Whatever you decide, go in to 2015 with great anticipation that big things are about to happen. 
You are so loved and so valued and were created with a purpose!
*If you have chosen your word for 2015, I would so love to hear what it is and why you chose it!