Costumes for kids or costumes for adults attending masquerade parties. scrapbooks, handmade birthday cards or special party favors to delight a little girl or boy. Baked goodies to match the theme of a party or a special cake to make a social gathering an extra special, photo-worthy evening to remember.
What could be more fun than doing all of these things and more! How about watching little eyes open wide with excitement or hearing squeals of joyous laughter made possible by your creations? And what could make life more enjoyable for a little one than having someone create a party for you based on your own special theme or favorite character or personality and having all your friends enjoy your special day with you?
That is exactly what a creative genius friend of mine does all the time. Her name is Ginny Gravitt. She is the first person I am featuring as an official “Joy Maker!” That is the name I have given to people that do things specifically with the intent and purpose of bringing joy to others.
Ginny recently moved to the Los Angeles area from a small town in Oregon where she worked for over 30 years at Delphian, a private K-12 school, for which Ginny was as an administrator. If you ask Ginny what she loved most about working at the school she would tell you without any hesitation that it was the interaction she had with the kids. This is what she told me recently when I asked her that exact question: “The students kept me young. I can’t imagine a more rewarding way to have spent my life than to help and nurture children. After all, these children are our future!”
What attracted me to write this article about Ginny was her seemingly limitless creativity. Almost anything one might think of to make an occasion special, she could make. Not only could she make any of the items in question but she could make them look great! So, I wanted to get more information about her. While interviewing Ginny I found out that in addition to being an administrator, she also worked as a Faculty Advisor for some of the students at the school, as did a number of other teachers and administrators. As a Faculty Advisor she helped students learn the ins and outs of the school, helped direct them to classes and curriculum that aligned with their individual purpose or goals. Sometimes they just needed someone to talk to. If that was the case, she was always there for them – and they knew they could depend on her being there and listening.
I asked Ginny whether she liked being a Faculty Advisor for students at the school. This is what she had to say: “Every school year, the faculty of the boarding school where I worked are all assigned to be a Faculty Advisor to a small group of specific students. I usually had 2 or 4 students. All I ever tried to do was to listen to them and give them advice, which hopefully, was based on common sense. Sometimes I would be the “second mom” for these kids while they were away from home. I must have done a fairly good job, as I still maintain relationships with scores of my formerly assigned students. At my last birthday party, 60% of the invited couples were former students for which I had been their Faculty Advisor!”
So, what inspired Ginny to get into making craft items for special occasions? Apparently, she’s been doing it all her life! “Throughout my life, I have always cooked, sewn and have done various crafts projects, but it wasn’t until my children graduated and left home that I realized – I am an artist! I struggled with ‘empty nest syndrome’ so I took up scrapbooking. I am forever grateful to my scrapbook mentor who encouraged me to turn my photos into stories and/or art pieces.”
“That was the beginning of my coming into being as an artist. Having finally recognized and acknowledge the fact that I am an artist, my horizons expanded many fold and I now see beauty everywhere. I am open and willing to try my hand at different mediums and I have found that as I look around, I also find inspiration everywhere. One of my mantras is ‘Make Art Every Day.’ To me, that doesn’t mean that I have to take a paintbrush to canvas, or sew a complete garment–but it does mean that whatever I’m doing, I do it to the best of my ability, to professional standards, even if it’s just in the way I plate my husband’s lunchtime meal or iron a shirt. I try to make the result of whatever task or project I am working on to be aesthetically pleasing – and that, to me, is ‘art!’”
Below is an example of Ginny’s boundless creativity. She bakes and decorates cakes.
Birthday cake – castle
Birthday cake – shape of hamburger
Fancy birthday cake
Then, there are some unique, specialty cakes. “With my friends, Courtney and Angela, we make buckets of push pop cakes.”
Another Pushpop cake
Below is another example of the type of unique party favors that Ginny can create. Included below is a custom “book” favor for the birthday of a 70-year-old gentleman. It contained candies and a booklet with highlights about the life of the birthday boy. He loved it! And everyone in attendance thought it was absolutely great!
Birthday party book favor
So, what types of projects is Ginny working on now or in the near future? “I am helping a friend with a DIY wedding. Part of this large project includes making 180 individual pouches to hold silverware at each place setting.” Wow! That will be quite something! Below is a photo of what these pouches will look like. Also below is a photo of some party center pieces Ginny made. These are flower arrangements made into the shape of a cake. One of these arrangements was placed on every table!
Center piece – cake shaped flowers.
Custom utensil pouches for each place setting
So Ginny, do you reserve all of your creative juices to do projects for other people? “Oh, no! I try to be creative at everything I do. Since we recently became first-time homeowners, I have enjoyed applying my artistic touch to decorating, organizing and making home improvements throughout our home inside and out. I’ve even been doing some landscaping, taking out sickly rose bushes and putting in palms and Pampas grasses. Last weekend I put in a small vegetable and herb garden in my back yard. I sure am looking forward to the harvest!”
The whole purpose and intent of this blog, Enjoy Life More!, is to promote products, activities or experiences that make life just a bit more enjoyable. While the list of things that can make life more enjoyable is unlimited, one of the things that people enjoy doing is being creative whether it is done as a hobby or as an income-producing business. Ginny does both!
If you are interested in a special party for your little one or are looking for someone to cater a special occasion for you or someone you know, contact Ginny. Below are all the ways in which you can contact or follow Ginny and her projects.
Google +: https://plus.google.com/106702257866044555949/posts
Please help Ginny, our first featured “Joy Maker” by sharing this blog on any sites you use for social networking (Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Google+, etc.). You could also copy the link to this blog (http://www.asvsproducts.com/joy-maker-ginny-gravitt-crafts-person-extraordinaire/) and send it to your mailing list. Just let them know you are recommending it.
Enjoy some additional photos of Ginny’s projects below. Remember the motto of this blog: “Enjoy Life More!”
“This bag is a party favor I made for a ‘Frozen’ birthday party.”
“Frozen” party favors
Here are a few photos of some great food creations Ginny made. Some are for Halloween, some for other special occasions.
German chocolate cup cakes
More Halloween goodies
Here are some gorgeous, very fancy dresses Ginny made for some dancers at a dance school that was putting on a performance of the Nutcracker Ballet.
Nutcracker Ballet dress 3
Nutcracker Ballet dress 2
Nutcracker Ballet dress 1
Written by Armando Salcido, President, ASVS Products. www.asvsproducts.com
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