Monday, October 5, 2015

Tend Baby Co.

My dears, tomorrow morning around 9 am (PST) I will be hosting a little pop-up shop (go here)! It will be stocked with a few handmade baby items, all made by friends of mine who have lovingly donated their time and incredible talents. All of the profits will be going toward a new malnutrition center in Haiti, run by my friend Brittany Hilker (find out more here!) I really hope that you will stop by and take a peek! 

Malnutrition is a big problem in Haiti, and it affects children and young babies the most. Over 100,000 children are currently suffering from severe malnutrition and many die everyday. I have followed Brittany's journey for many years and have prayed along with her from afar, cried when children were unable to be saved, and rejoiced when many under her care were given a new life. Hunger is a simple problem to solve when there are resources available. I know that resources are certainly not a problem for God, but we are His hands and feet. My prayer and wish is that I can be a small part of what He's already doing!

About a year ago, I was going through a rough patch. The culmination of many things coming together, including moving back to my own small hometown, triggered something in me. I felt insignificant. I felt dissatisfied with some of the things I was putting effort into that my heart didn't feel connected to anymore. I've often viewed myself and my little life as unable to be used for greater things. A suburban Mom who is often overwhelmed with life. Yet, I often find myself dreaming big dreams.

One thing I've learned recently is that when your cup is starting to feel empty, it might just mean that He's building you a new cup. A bigger one. One that can be poured out in greater and new ways. But the process seems to come with a few growing pains and definitely a sacrifice. A letting go.

The older I get, it's becoming harder and harder to look away from others who are suffering or in need. I feel a greater responsibility to respond. It's become more difficult to stay in my safe bubble of happy-go-lucky. The thing I've had to let go of is myself and my own fears because it doesn't always feel like what I have to offer is worthy of the cause. I'm thankful that what Jesus has to offer is worthy and that His grace is covering me.

This little shop may seem a small thing, but my heart is wrapped right up there in it. Putting a vision out there, asking people to help and to give without the guarantee of any sort of response has definitely made my heart beat faster and caused me to say many prayers, and we're just now getting to the actual sale!

I hope that you're encouraged by this, and that you know even suburban Moms who are often overwhelmed with life can do something. Even the fluffy things that you're into (like handmade baby bonnets) can be turned into an offering if you're willing. That He will make you a new and bigger cup when you are ready to let go of the old one.


Wednesday, September 16, 2015

Fun with Matisse.

My pile of scrap paper has been overflowing lately thanks to all the paper-cuts I've been making. My kids love to through the bin and are often asking to use the oddly shaped pieces of colorful paper for various projects.

Recently, Jack and I found a few books about Matisse at the library, which inspired us to take those scraps and make something beautiful. You can read more about it over on Playful Learning today!

Wednesday, September 9, 2015

An Eclectic Entryway with Chairish.

Recently, the good folks at Chairish reached out to me with a little challenge: select a chair from a list of their favorites and create a little space around it. I chose this vintage golden velvet number and here's the result!

The goal was to design a space that was "bright" not "white," a notable challenge for someone who claims white as her favorite color, but I tried. My idea of making a space bright has to do with texture, thoughtful accents, and at least one show-stopping colorful and/or graphic element (like the cement tile pictured above) I think paring things down, bringing in as much natural light as possible, and limiting the color palette actually makes a space feel open and airy, in a calming sort of way. Possibly another definition of bright, but cheery all the same. And yes, the walls of this entryway would most likely be a shade of white (oops!), but I think it would be far from boring :).

Thanks for including me in your little challenge Chairish! Now to find a house that actually has a grand entryway....

Sunday, August 23, 2015

Three years of Jack.

This sweet, curly-haired boy turned three years old this last week. I can't imagine our home without him in it, yet I can hardly believe he's already lived three years! We often joke that he is the most rewarding, yet demanding child. Always by my side, and most likely attached to me in some way, this boy brings me so much joy. It's a lot of work, but I love our relationship. I've never met another child who will (gently) turn your face towards their own just to make sure they can "wook in your eyes" while you talk to each other.

Over the years, my birthday party philosophy has evolved from all out-shindig, to simple parties with a few fun elements, but a focus on people and simplicity. This time around we made a large and in charge golden whale piƱata, and a few zigzag streamers and called it good.

We also ordered a few extra swimming friends to play with at the party and send home with guests. For the record, it took about 20 minutes for this water display to get out of hand (with Jack leading the way) and be removed, but it was fun while it lasted.

Watching Jack's face and reaction to everything from the cupcakes to the presents was so fun. I forgot how easy it is to knock the socks off of a three year old (it's a little harder with those older kids)!

We love you Jack and can't wait to see how you grow this next year!

Tuesday, August 11, 2015


These days blogging and spontaneous crafting have been a bit on the back burner due to my design work. I've been pretty terrible about sharing some of my favorite design based projects, but now I'm resolving to start a portfolio series here because I would love to have a record of it all somewhere.

One of my favorite projects from 2015 so far, has been a series of paper cuts designed and made for the Playful Learning Studio-a brick and mortar expansion of the website I work for Playful Learning. It's amazing how fun it is to see designs go from screen to paper shapes! I kind of want to do this with every project now.

The most complex piece involved looking at an actual picture of the (adorable!) studio and first making a vector design from scratch, and then figuring out how to combine the pieces so they could be cut out. Here's a picture of the studio...

And here is the simplified, paper cut version!

The rest of the project included titles for each of the different subject areas offered at the studio.

If you happen to live in the Montauk/ East Hampton area, I encourage you to check out the studio! You can find more information here.

Wednesday, July 8, 2015

Springtime Flowers Party (sponsored by Cricut) Reveal

A little over a year ago, I hosted a little shindig in honor of (and sponsored by) the kind folks at Cricut and their new machine, the Explore. Unfortunately, I didn't snap a lot of pictures during the party, but couldn't resist taking a few after it was over. Life goes on, and those pictures have sat on my memory card for a a year in hopes that I would have the time to put together a little tutorial before sharing.

I am still in love with these paper flower arrangements-they totally made the cut for keeping around in the party closet! I made everything using the Explore, but all of it utilizes basic shapes, so don't despair-no machine needed! Although, I must say, having the machine saved me from some major hand cramping.

A handy tip I discovered when using paper flowers, is to fill the container you're using with sand. It holds the paper upright and keeps everything in place really nicely.

For the flowers: I used this tutorial, which uses a million little circles (here is where a Cricut comes in handy!). I wanted something different than glitter in the center, so I pushed a small dowel through the middle and added a wooden knob on the end that I have painted yellow using acrylic craft paint.

For the paper succulents: I used this tutorial with my own drawn shape.

For the snake plants: Cut various sizes of a long leaf shape out of green card stock. Fold each leaf in half to give it dimension.

For the yellow craspedia: Paint wooden knobs from the craft store yellow and place on the end of plant stakes or small dowels.

Thank you Cricut for such a nice time!

Thursday, June 25, 2015

A Private Art Dealer is my Fave

Melanie from You Are My Fave is always snapping pictures of her latest art finds and generally being cool. A while back I decided my very bare walls needed her help! I love art, but have a terrible time narrowing down my picks and putting it all together.

Melanie swooped in and with the help of Minted and a few nails, and made two different walls in my house shine. Something about a good gallery wall just legitimizes a space (so much better than randomly hung art), and she did a fantastic job.

To see more, head over to You Are My Fave! P.S. She's also kinda giving away a $500 gift card to Minted on Instagram today, so you might want to head there too!
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