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It's Better to Give Than to Receive…Take 2

For the second year now, I’ve participated in the Season of Caring sponsored by the Austin American Statesman newspaper. Each year, the newspaper works with local charities that nominate families who are particularly needy. This year, I was able to help the Lugo family, a mother and her two teenage daughters.

For the past six months, Mirtha, the mother, has carved out every possible minute to study for her American citizenship test. Do you know that it costs $800 to take that test? Imagine how long it would take to save that amount of money for a single parent who works two jobs as a hotel janitor and spa attendant. One of the items on their “need” list was a dining table and chairs…I knew they were the family that I should help. I have two teenage daughters, too, and I understand how a mother wants her girls to excel in life.

Mirtha loved earthy greens, yellows, and brown.

I asked the charity to find out the colors that the mother liked so I would know what direction to go. My assistant, Sydney, and I went to work hunting down fabrics and finally decided to go with another amazing Kim Parker fabric, Isabelle’s Garden in velvet from Clarke & Clarke. It’s earthy and happy all at the same time. I also selected my Effie chair from my new line of antique inspired dining chairs from my website.

The Perfect Table…Distressed in Valspar’s Garden of Paradise

The paint was trickier to select, but I finally decided on this earthy green. I distressed the table, painted the chairs, and added a black glaze for depth.

The Perfect Table Setting!

Of course, you can’t have a cute table and chairs without a great tabletop to go with it! I selected a set of dishes also by Kim Parker to go with this set. My daughter helped me select the woven placemats and teal napkins, to bring out the teal in the fabric. I could tell that Mirtha loved them! Who wouldn’t???

Perfect Size for Their Kitchen!

I went on Sunday to deliver it to the family’s apartment. I met all of them, and Mirtha and her two daughters were delightful! And they seemed to really love the set.

Here’s a Toast to Great Things to Come for This Family!

Honestly, there’s just something about this that makes me feel so small. All my concerns and worries melt away when I see the struggle that others go through daily just to survive. They have a much steeper hill to climb. My hope and wish is that this small donation will give them something to smile at when they are in their kitchen.

It’s rewarding to give, and it’s so easy to do. To find out about their story, you can read more by clicking here. The coordinator at the charity said that, more than anything, they really want classes and education to help them better their lives. All three of them are really hard workers. Mirtha is getting computer classes so she can get a better job to help her family, but the older daughter wants to take driver’s ed classes so she can learn to drive.

You can also donate to this family on that link above. Be sure to select “Mirtha Lugo Foundation Communities” if you want it to go to this specific family.

Merry Christmas, Friends!

Wendy Conklin

I'm Wendy Conklin, The Chair Stylist.

What brings me joy is helping others live more creatively. I design antique-inspired, boutique chairs, and I teach others how to do what I do. Check out my shop, services, and courses to bring more whimsy into your home and life!

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Styling Guide

Bring the Chair Whimsy aesthetic into your home with our styling guide!