Saturday, July 30, 2011

Book recommendation for busy 3 year olds who should be sleeping

It's laaaaate and I should be getting to bed (Griffin is up a lot at night these days for who knows what reason) but I'll be mad at myself if I don't type this out right now. I'm already a little sad I didn't take pictures.

Anyway, a certain friend of mine gave Bird the book pictured above for her 3rd birthday. It's awesomely funny. And my mischievous inner child can't help but egg Bird on a bit while we're reading it. "Look, see where his mom stashed the paint so he won't be able to get it", etc. etc.

Tonight I checked on Bird before going to bed. She's often in odd little places about her room. It's strange to find her tucked in with nothing else strewn about. This time I walked in and found her on the floor. She started to get up when I came toward her and I immediately saw black marker all over her hands (like gloves people) and lower half of her face. I scanned the scene and saw THE BOOK opened up like an instruction manual on her bed. Markers uncapped all over the bed. And scrawls across the sheets, bed frame, dresser. I scooped her up and got Jared, hand over my mouth to keep the howls of laughter in (not entirely successful at that one). Jared got her cleaned up while I changed out all the bedding and wiped off all the markered surfaces (thank goodness for washable markers!!!). Looking at the scene more closely I found a baby wipe totally covered in black marker. I think she was actually trying to clean herself up after the whole wild escapade and then fell asleep in process on the floor.

So if you need a little excitement in your life please give your child this book. Or give it to your friends child ;o) They may not find it as funny as we did but hopefully so.

Hugs and good night!!

Thursday, July 28, 2011


Summer Backyard

Two weekends ago I had friends over to help me celebrate my birthday. It was sooo much fun that I want to do it regularly - without the birthday part :o) We ate rum cake and drank two types of sangria. I set out a table of supplies and a couple of crafty project ideas: tiny felt strawberries and needle felted flowers.

A couple of strawberries were sewn and stuffed but there was mostly a lot of furious felting going on. Possibly a few drops of blood from the accidental looking up to answer a question (never take your eyes off the needle). Thinking about it, maybe it's not safe to mix needle felting with sangria but it sure was fun.

Summer Backyard

Summer Backyard

I also got to set the yard up all pretty which has been such a joy this summer. The garden has been amazing & I can't stop checking out all the new blooming flowers and fruits/veg. Every morning when Jared drives off Bird tells me it's time to look for sugar snap peas (in her cutest 3yo version of the words) and then we move on to strawberries, then tomatoes. Then we ogle at the corn and talk about the growing melons and ripening figs.

Summer Backyard

Summer Backyard

Summer Backyard

Summer Backyard

It's so fun to share this space we've been working on and nurturing for nearly 6 years now. My studio is still pretty rough around the edges but we can't justify working on it with full focus till we get a few other things done on the house. Plus, with a 4mth old and a 3yo it's been more than difficult to get time to myself out there. So for now it will have unpainted baseboards, leaky old windows, lots of entrances for spiders (and hopefully nothing larger than that), and mediocre lighting. Frankly, I don't care what it looks like really - I just want some time to get working and stocking my shop again. I have SO many ideas...bursting at the seams.

Summer Backyard

Have to mention, of the friends who were over the other night...some fabulous blogs, sites, and projects they are involved in. My lovely friend Klay has partnered with Anna Maria Horner and is selling her plushes in Anna's shop. They are made with an assortment of AMH's fabrics and they are incredibly cute and meticulously sewn. They would be perfect in a living room as much as they would in a kid's room. Here's Klay's post about the news and here is Anna Maria Horner's "Visiting Artists" shop page. And this is Klay's shop. I'm so excited for Klay!

My friends Wendy and Laura also came and they are both talented crafty ladies. Wendy used to work in a high tech job (same company as Jared, that's how we met) and has since left and is now, hopefully, going to be making and selling more of her beautiful things. Wendy's blog site is here and shop is here. You will love her design aesthetic - I totally admire her clean and modern design sense.

Laura is an illustrator here in San Jose. I can't even remember how we met at this point but I just enjoy her company so much and think she's such fun to be around. Her illustration work is so light hearted, colorful, and energetic. She's been working on building a licensing career and I think she's doing an amazing job. Her blog site is here and her main (fancy!) site and shop is here. She posted about the evening over here too :o)

Have you attended an evening of crafting and hanging with friends? What kind of projects did you work on? Have any advice to share? I think it's such a great time - I definitely recommend it. It's the perfect opportunity to share a new skill or just connect with creative friends. I wasn't sure what crafty project to offer and looked online a little for ideas but didn't find much. In the end, I just thought about what I like to work on and possibly what others might be interested in.

The two glasses of wine I had tonight have made my brain a little (more) mushy...I'm just happy to be finally getting this posted after 2 days of attempts. Such is life these days :o) Hope you're having a lovely week.

Hugs, Devon

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

3 adults 3 kids 2 dogs::Camping in Big Meadow

Big Meadow

We were just a little afraid...but we did it anyway :o) Like most anything with small children, camping was a lot of work but it was so worth it for the change of scenery, fresh air, new experiences for Bird, time with friends, time w/o internet and phones, etc., etc.

We drove into the Sierras on Friday and luckily found a spot at Big Meadow campground. Our initial plan was to camp at Lake Alpine but our friend David got there before us and found it to be less than ideal (boggy, no fire ring which meant NO fires, eep!, & LOTS of mosquitos) so we found a sweet little spot at Big Meadow. Picture huge granite boulders, towering redwoods, creeks with crystal clear cold water, miniature everything else - mosses, powdery blue butterflies, teeny alpine flowers. Just divine.

Big Meadow

We spent time both hiking & exploring as well as trying to get Griffin to sleep, haha ;o) I walked up and down the road for half an hour with Griffy in the sling while reading my Sunset magazine. Heck, that actually was somewhat relaxing.

Jared did what he normally does. Made me nervous by throwing Bird "high in the sky please?!" (her words) and crossing rivers on fallen logs with 4mth old Griffy strapped to his chest. Not too happy about that one still...

Bird LOVED it all. We are planning our next trip and hopefully one for each month next summer as well.

The only real issue was how crazy cold it got at night...and that when sharing one space for sleep, if one person wakes up often everybody wakes up. This can be a bit of a bummer. Note photo below...hard to tell but that is the sunrise behind Jared and the kids :o)

Big Meadow

David and his little guy joined us in camping. Bird loved having someone to dote on.

Big Meadow

Thursday, July 14, 2011

What's new on a Thursday in July

I hung these shelves in my studio. They are spice racks from Ikea. Got the idea from Ohdeedoh but I think lots of blogs have been featuring them (because they're functional and super cheap!).

new shelves for the studio

Josef Frank is still inspiring the heck out of me.

on my pin board: josef frank

I'm making this cake for my birthday celebration this weekend. And three types of sangria. Yes, three!

Griffin is 4mths old & killing us with cuteness. He had his 4mth appt. today and weighs nearly 16lbs. Big boy chunk of love.

Sanguine (our 12yr old tuxedo cat) is driving me nuts...along with Phylo dog. I think they're keying in on my anxiety when I have two kids sleeping simultaneously. Or it's probably that they think it's their turn for attention. I can't even step outside to take photos w/o Phylo erupting into whiny barks at people passing by. It's making him crazy that I walk him at night now. He has to chill the whole day waiting. Such is life. It's not forever.

I'm really enjoying this blog lately. Everything you ever wanted to know about alignment and strengthening your muscles and really just about how our bodies (should) work. Fascinating stuff. And she just had a baby which adds another component of interest to it for me. Did you know it's important to have diaper free time for babies so they won't have their legs separated by a big 'ol diaper all the time? Or that maybe you don't need to be doing kegels? (like I've been doing them hmm...)

I'm designing a collection of fabrics that I'm reeeaaally excited about :o) But shame on me for leaving my open sketchbook and pen right in the open on my desk. Talk about an invite for collaboration from Bird. Thank goodness for Photoshop.

Bird's addition to my sketch

Bird will be going here this fall. Her name came up in the lottery - thrilled!!

Lots of beauty from the garden these days. Flowers for sure but also blackberries, figs, tomatoes, sugar snap peas, corn, strawberries, herbs, apricots, avocados, and oranges. You would not go hungry in our backyard.

zinnia explosion

We made apricot jam again.

canned apricot jam

I'm getting this book and this book for my birthday. And this for Bird because she really really needs it (story will follow soon if I have time).

And I'm headed here tonight.

Hugs, Devon

Griffin is 4 months old

Griffin, 4 months

Sweet Griffy boy :o) 4 months old!

Griffin, 4 months

Hands in the mouth, grabbing everything, decent sleeper, happy kid.

Griffin, 4 months

Bird is still just as obsessed with her little brother. It's lovely, most of the time.

Griffin, 4 months

He has super hearty laughs. Bird didn't laugh like this so we're really enjoying every bit of it :o)

Griffin, 4 months

Hugs, Devon

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Leah Evans Textiles

"Googling" is just amazing. You never know what you'll find right? In my quest to find things related to a certain key word I'm exploring for a fabric collection I stumbled upon the work of Leah Evans.

To say her textile pieces are detailed and worthy of getting completely lost in is an understatement. I can't get enough of these amazing pieces. I really wish I could see some of these in person, and run my fingers over all the hours of stitch work. My favorites (photos from here):

And some detail shots (photos also from here)

The odd thing is that I feel like I've met her before?? Did she go to RISD? She certainly knows textiles - I knew a couple of Leahs in our department but who knows. I would love to hang out with her for an afternoon and learn more about her process.

Happily sweating in the studio with 2 kids napping,

Beachy loungy fun

4th of July

We did a lot of nothing over the long weekend...aaahhhh. Jared got back from work travel to Asia and the jet lag has been pretty serious. So we played it simple - made and ate lots of good food. Salmon steaks, cucumber salads, bbq ribs, papaya and melon salads, grilled pizza, strawberry ice cream. Jared and Bird went to see Cars 2 and I stayed home with Griffy and did chores around the house while he slept. Crazy how fun chores can seem when you're by yourself. I took Bird to the pool. We went for walks. And on the 4th we went to the beach and it was a great time.

How was your 4th? Parades? Picnics? Family time?

4th of July

Phylo was a well behaved doggie the entire time! He's usually a real PITA and we dread bringing him but this time, wow, he was on his best behavior. Maybe he got the memo that we were fed up with taking him. He's also 6 now which may help too.

The sun was shining (my back is unfortunately a little burned but every one else came out unscathed) and the water was COLD as usual. Griffy slept in the travel crib for an hour so it was actually somewhat relaxing. He had the best sound machine sound track that day...crashing waves. Plus a cool breeze. How lovely.


Jared and Griffy had plenty of cuddles :o)

Griffy shadow

This little profile shot kills me.


I'm in the studio snagging hopefully more than an hour to work on new drawings.

Have a fabulous day :o)
Hugs, Devon