Printmaking… beat that, ZARA!

How cute is this Zara boys t-shirt?!  I just love their kids clothes.  They are ever so adorable, without looking too babyish. 2015-06-06 14-02-02 2015-06-06 14-02-29

I saw this and knew Ollie needed it… the arrows remind me of his adventurous spirit, and wild streak.

But being the selfish mom that I am…I had already broken the bank this month…  This dress!  Do you love it as much as I do?!  I’m wearing it right now as I write this, and am feeling only remotely bad for my selfish mothering choices, because this dress is just that great!

Rather than whip out the ol’ credit card, I decided to take some of O’s tees and make my own version of the shirt for him. 2015-06-06 13-53-25 2015-06-06 13-52-47 (2)

I used a linoleum block and carved some arrows, then stamped onto old t-shirts.  Ollie’s shirts don’t look quite as polished as the Zara one, but I like them none-the-less.  I’m hoping that if I stand next to O in my crazy-chic, new dress that we will average into a polished looking family.  We’ll see!

With love,



Sunday Fun Day: Picnicking and Fishing 2015-06-07 15-09-40

Full disclosure:  I am a picnic junkie.  Just give me the opportunity… the reason… and I will have a sack lunch ready in no time flat.  I love eating… and I love lounging outdoors. So I guess a picnic is the perfect mix.

G feels about fishing the way I feel about picnics.  He will fish in the freezing cold… in the pouring rain.  Just give him the opportunity… the reason… and he will have his fly rod in hand ready to catch!

So what better way to spend our Sunday than picnicking and fishing?!  Throw some biking in there to appease the little man and voila:  Sunday Fun Day! 2015-06-07 15-10-37

G had quite a rig set up on his bike!  We looked a bit crazy, but were ready for any and all opportunities that may present themselves.  (Poor O!  Just peeking out over the trailer… How did he end up with such crazies for parents?!)

FullSizeRender (2) 2015-06-07 15-09-58

Ollie was really into fishing today.  He picked a white fly to cast…

FullSizeRender (3)  FullSizeRender (4)

…And guess what?!  They actually caught a fish on the fly!

FullSizeRender (1)        IMG_1300


IMG_1245 2015-06-07 15-10-13 (1)

My picnic was delightful, although not as picturesque as the fishing… hence the lack of photographic evidence.

All in all… Great Sunday…

So if the opportunity to have a fishing picnic is ever presented to you… I urge you to jump up, pack a lunch, grab your rod and go for it.

Happy Sunday Funday Ya’all

with love,


Preschool ART Adventure

This summer I have been having way too much fun teaching art lessons at Ollie’s preschool.  Is there anything cuter than a handful of enthusiastic, 2 year old artists?  Not in my opinion.

I’ve been starting every lesson off with a book.  These kids crack me up!  The moment I sit down to read there are like 3 little ones backing their booties onto my lap!

IMG_1370This week we read Chicka Chicka Boom Boom.  This is a favorite in my house.  I can read it with my eyes closed and O laughs hysterically as he finishes every “Chicka Chicka” with a “Boom Boom”.

All of the kids loved the book just as much as O does.

Then came the art part!  We started by taping the first letter of each of their names… O for Oliver, A for Aiden…

Round 1 was oil pastels.  These little artists drew all kinds of fancy shmancy lines and shapes around their letters.

FullSizeRender (6)

Round 2 was painting watercolors with a brush.  The kids told me which color they wanted, and I loaded up the brush and let them GO TO TOWN.

Round 3 was kids’ favorite.  We used eye droppers to squirt liquid watercolors all over.  This had to be monitored pretty closely… They can get carried away with this pretty quickly. 2015-06-08 14-47-41Round 4 is my favorite part:  SALT.  I love the effect salt has on watercolors.  If you’ve never played with this before, do.  The salt soaks up some of the pigment and when the paint is dry it leaves what looks like little crystals where each salt granule was.

When the paint is dry we simply peeled off the tape, wiped off the salt, and VOILA:  Chicka chicka boom boom art.

Sometimes I think that these kids are the true artists.  They have no fear.  Their work truly is an expression of them in that very moment.  How many of us can really create so freely?  Certainly not me.

FullSizeRender (5)  FullSizeRender (7)  FullSizeRender (14)

With love,


The profoundness of Pooh… and painting

I always thought that I’d be the type to spend her entire pregnancy nesting… decorating… painting… preparing…

Turns out… I WAS NOT.  I was a huge slacker!  I never painted a nursery… we got a cheap-o Ikea crib and I threw it together at about 9 months…

The one thing I did do was paint a quote on O’s nursery wall. A Winnie the Pooh quote… “I knew when I met you an adventure was going to happen”.  I heard this and for some reason it resonated with me. I knew that I was about to embark upon a huge adventure with this little human I was growing.

…Winnie the Pooh is actually pretty profound…

“If ever there is a tomorrow that we are not together, there is one thing you should always remember.  You are braver than you believe, stronger than you seem, and smarter than you think. But the most important thing is:  Even if we’re apart, I will always be with you in your heart”

“Life is a journey to be experienced.  Not a problem to be solved”

….I know right?!  That’s some pretty deep stuff!

Anyway…  About a year after O’s birth we moved… and that quote got left on the wall of our little house.  I knew that I wanted that quote to follow us into our new home.  It took me a long time, but finally this week I started brainstorming.

The end result is this watercolor painting. 2015-06-06 12-54-27

This quote still resonates with me.  The past two years have been nothing short of a great adventure!

With love,


Sailing and Single Parenting

Hats off to all the single parents out there.  I made it for approximately 1 WEEK!  Yes, 1 week… And I am ready to collapse!  Holy hard work.  Not a second to gather your thoughts… ALWAYS ON.

Don’t get me wrong, Ollie is the love of my life… But darn do I like my quiet time.

No worries all… Galen is alive, well, and still stuck with me!  He was on a sailing trip.  He had the opportunity help a friend sail from South Carolina to Maryland, and if you know much of Galen, you know there was no thought other than to go! 2015-06-06 20-04-10

We could not be more different in that regard.

When weighing the possibility of my EVER sailing for a week I decided I’d rather have my toenails ripped out.  Upon further thought, I’ve modified my decision:  I’d rather have one toenail ripped out, then make a final decision based upon my pain threshold…

1 or 10 toenails aside… What I’m saying is, “NO thank you!”

Gotta love his enthusiasm and willingness to try something new… ALWAYS.

In short, Galen described the trip as “terrifying and wonderful… an adventure to be sure”.  When asked if he’d do it again… “In a second!”

IMG_1339 2015-06-06 20-04-28 2015-06-06 20-03-21  IMG_1338

IMG_1343     IMG_1335


Living adventures vicariously through Galen is plenty adventure for me.

With love,


A beach, in West Virginia?!

YES!  Who knew? 2015-06-06 12-48-17

Coming from Michigan, I was spoiled.  There is a lake about every 30 miles or so… not to mention the Great Lakes!

Virginia is a different story.  Did you know that there are no natural lakes in Virginia?  I didn’t!

Some hot days I’d give just about anything to dip my fit into some cool water.  And in between clouds and cold last week, we had a few of those.  I had some inside intel about a lake in West Virginia and let me tell you…My source did not disappoint.

The lake is situated in a beautiful park with hiking trails, and for $5 Ollie and I had the lake to ourselves.  It was perfect to wade, play and splash in. 2015-06-06 12-48-56

And check out my new beach towel!  A gift from my mom of course… like essentially every other nice thing I own.  Thanks mom!

And thanks, West Virginia, for living up to hashtag #wildandwonderful!

With love,


DINOSAURLAND! 2015-06-06 19-04-06

If you’ve been in Winchester for more than 5 minutes you’ve heard of Dinosaur Land.

It’s legend here, and with good reason.  A showpiece of kitschy Americana!  I don’t know how we made it this long without going… but today our lives have been altered for the better.

Dinosaur Land:  You are my new favorite.  I will be bringing EVERY person who comes to visit here.  You are hysterical, fun, crazy, wonderful… All wrapped up into 50 life-sized DINOSAURS.

I’m not entirely sure if Ollie, Galen or me enjoyed this experience more… As a family though… this rates pretty high for us. 2015-06-06 19-05-22 2015-06-06 19-05-05 2015-06-06 19-04-43 2015-06-06 19-04-19

With love,


Weddings and watercolors

As matron of honor in my sister’s wedding, I was responsible for writing a wedding speech.  I was beyond worried… So worried that I didn’t even touch pen to paper until a couple weeks before.  I wasn’t even going to begin that day, until I randomly came across this quote,

“Anyone can be passionate, but it takes true lovers to be silly” by Rose Franken.  And then words poured…

Of all the things I love about my sister, I love her silliness the most.  The way her laugh can turn any situation into a goofy one.  And what I love the most about Doug is the way he brings out this light, joyful laugh in Julie.

After sobbing on repeat while I wrapped up my speech, I started to wonder what other people were working on for the wedding… What speeches… What vows… What words…

I wanted to make something for Doug and Julie that summed up how much we all love them and how much they love each other.



This painting is what  I came up with.  It is a montage of the words that I heard over and over on their big day!

I’ve been really loving watercolors lately, so that is what I used.  Liquid watercolors have converted me!

I’m hoping they love this painting as much as I loved painting it for them.

With love,


Ice Cream Model 2015-06-06 12-58-24

After sharing Ollie’s rise to fame (as seen in the ad for Winchester, Virginia’s jazz festival here) it has brought to my attention that I may have a THING for photographing my kid with ice cream.

Who can blame me though… Ice cream and Ollie are a few of my favorite things… Forget raindrops and roses!

So with that in mind, I would like to announce that Oliver will be entering the ever popular field of ice cream modeling.

Case and Point to follow… 2015-06-06 12-57-50 2015-06-06 12-56-48

As you can see, he looks ADORABLE in all flavors!

I think his resume speaks for itself…

With love,