Sunday, July 31

Hello August!

This is how I feel about August. excited and anxious.
This month overwhelms me, second only to December.
It is raw chaos over here as I go back to school (teaching first grade this year, part time)
we have birthdays galore, throw potty training & starting preschool into the mix and August is full.
And in the last 2 years I ran out of steam by the time Jack's birthday came.
Not this year. I'm determined to get in front of it and not be surprised
when his birthday comes.
Things on the list:

1. Savor these sweet moments together.
Resist the temptation to wish them away.
Resist the temptation to check my email and do grown up stuff.
Resist the temptation to browse to internet and wish for things I don't have.
Live here. Be here. Play here. Sing here.

2. Spend time with Jesus.
Not hours or half hours. I'm talking about whatever moments I can get to
crack open my devotional and get a little time with Jesus.
A page, a paragraph, a sentence.
and be happy with what I can get & trust
that God will use it  today.

3. Handmade Christmas 2011
Create a collection for my etsy shop & for fairs. I've got so many ideas.
I want to host a handmade ornament exchange.
 I always get jealous when I see her and her exchange.
Who is up for it?

{I don't have a good picture for one.}
4. Birthdays and birthdays and more birthdays.
Get out ahead of them. no more being surprised when they come.
I haven't had a real birthday party for Jack where his friends come.
It kinda scares me. Any tips?

{or this one}
5. Move more, eat less
No huge crazy goals. I just need to get off of the eat-whatever-I-want diet
and on to the have-some-self-control diet. And get outside and move
for my physical, emotional, and mental health. 
I  feel so much better when I do.

What are your August plans?!?


Thursday, July 28

Let a joy keep you.

I have been stumbling into my studio in the wee hours
of the night in between feedings.
In the midst of exhaustion.
Because I find that I must create. I must. 
It's like breathing now. And I get antsy and depressed and feel icky without it.
And while I have no time or energy to create,
my muse is on overdrive,
filling up my head and heart with ideas and experiments to try.  
And so, against my better judgement,
I go in and tear up little pieces of paper
and lay them side by side and glue them together
and paint on them, then write on them,
then cover them up and start all over.

My little man who doesn't sleep or pee pee in the potty
who can throw a knock down, drag out tantrum in a single bound
who gets up at around 2 or 3 am every night to crawl in bed with us.
Last night at around 2 or 3 I was playing in the studio, which is right next to his bedroom,
 and he stumbled in and sat on my lap for a while I cut and glued and painted and cut and glued.

Then, he grabbed a piece of paper and tore up a little piece of yellow paper.
With such certainty and confidence he said,
"Momma, this piece goes here."

Then I gave him his own paper to make his own art
and over and over he repeated:
"This is my art. This is your art."
Sometimes he'd even throw in,
"Oh momma, I like that piece. That looks really nice."
"This is my art. This is your art."
And yes, I'm paying for it this morning.
but it was worth it.


Wednesday, July 27


Okay, um, this is hard. I said it. It's just hard.
One month old and a three year old who won't sleep and refuses to pee pee in the potty.
(We've only had 3 accidents today. good times.)
I keep telling myself I need to lower my expectations. drastically.
And then I think maybe I can take a shower or brush my teeth.
or maybe even ***here's where it gets exciting***
empty the dishwasher.

then all hell breaks loose and I go back to reminding myself to lower my expectations again.
all I really have to do is survive the 9 hours until daddy comes home.

I do find that Jack (my 3 year old) needs me more than he ever has.
That I need to sit down for extended periods of time and engage with him.
You be the mommy bird, I'll be the big boy bird.  
You be the mommy firefighter, I'll be the big boy firefighter.
and on and on and on. all day.
Reminds me of this great post.

And I need to be present for him and for me. 
I know this is a season of survival,
but I also know that it is a season to savor.
That it will be gone faster than I want it to be.
And my laundry will still be dirty.
But  it's  still hard.

Monday, July 25

Mobile Crazy

Yes I'm crazy for mobiles these days.
I love them all.

Source: via Erin on Pinterest

Source: via Erin on Pinterest

Source: via Erin on Pinterest

Source: via Erin on Pinterest

Source: via Erin on Pinterest

Source: via Erin on Pinterest

One day I'll make one for each of my boys.
But for now I will just admire these.

Saturday, July 23

Flying Solo

Yesterday was a sad day.
Actually, Tuesday was our sad day and today was another.
Daddy went back to work and Mimi and Papa went on a 3 week trip to Ireland.
Happy for them, sad for us.

Auntie Cami  (aka: fairy godmother) flew all the way from Dallas to work
her magic with the boys and I as we learn to fly solo.

It was a really great week together.
We did a lot of hanging out.
a lot of talking.
a lot of laundry.
We went to the beach park.

and the spray ground.

and I took lots of naps.

sweet josh is sweet, sweet, sweet.
I can't come up with a word that describes him more perfectly.

I worked late nights in my studio because I could
take naps. New art is coming soon.

Thank you sweet Auntie Cami.
You are the best. We miss you more than you know.
Wish us luck flying solo in the next couple of weeks.

Saturday, July 16

Shop Update: New Dr. Suess Mixed Media Collages

These fun, new colorful prints of my mixed media collage
are now available in my shop!

I've always loved these quotes by Dr. Seuss and I finally created
two new mixed media collages to go with them.

I think I'll hang them side by side in the boys' room.
They are available in the shop as individual 8 x10 fine art prints, or as a set of 2.

The original collages are available here too.
Your mountain is waiting!
So be on your way.

Thursday, July 14

Gussy Link-up: Sunshine

Gussy Sews Inspiration Workshop!

Oops... I just noticed I wrote 2 days. Oh well.
See my post about perfectionism below...

Have a bright, bright sunshiney day... or uh 2 days.

Wednesday, July 13


So,  I have this huge long list of stuff I need to do
and I'm so overwhelmed by it all that I can't seem to do anything.
Now, I know you'll probably say,
Oh you just had a baby, don't worry about it...
but the thing is, the more I don't do, the more it bothers me, you know?
And it's stuff I just want to do and get done and move on, so I'll feel better.

like thank you notes & Josh's birth announcement.
I didn't even make one for Jack because I couldn't decide
 on a picture and design. It was too overwhelming.

photo credit
and then I was talking to my dear sweet Aunt Cami in Texas
 who is coming to visit and help out next week
and she told me a little secret.

I doesn't have to be perfect.

And what she didn't say because she's sweet is...
no one else really cares.
about the picture, I mean

I didn't even realize it, but I have letting my
perfectionism paralyze me and rob me of my joy.
My counselor points this out to me pretty frequently.
"If it's not perfect it's *$%*^."
All or nothing. No middle ground.

And it robs me of the little daily joys all around me.
And what's worse, and super scary to me, is that my perfectionism,
 left untamed, will actually hurt my family.
My husband and my boys.
If I'm never good enough for me,
then they won't be either,
and that sucks.
photo credit

That's not the wife and mother I want to be.
That's not the home I want to make.
That's not the men I want to raise.

Thank you, Aunt Cami for a little reality check.
I'm going to finish that birth announcement now...

Tuesday, July 12

Art Journaling: A Little Bit of Playtime!

We've been finding a new normal around here.
Getting used to being a family of four. And taking lots of naps.

I've been trying hard to do at least a little art in my art journal every day.
And it's hard. But so satisfying.

 that it's hard to create for 5 minutes here or there.
But, I'm finding that I can get a lot done when I do.

I painted a bunch or backgrounds last week.
And now I'm trying to make myself
think outside of my usual creating box,
take risks, and do things a little differently.

I usually just trade off: paint, paper,
more paint, more paper, more paint... you get the idea...
so I'm trying to experiment with different materials
line, line, shape, composition.

I would love to take this art journaling class.
Mostly because I love Aimee Dolich and want to grow up be her one day.
But I know from experience I'm a terrible online student.
I simply don't do the assignments.
Especially right now. I'm a little bit full right now,
but maybe you should take this class and tell me about it.

Happy Arting!
as my friend Janne would say.