To The Girl Who Has Everything

To The Girl Who Has Everything, 

I used to think I knew you.  Maybe once I did.  But truth be told, I never ACTUALLY did.  I just only thought I did. Because now I am older and wiser (and that is NOT to say I am wise) and I can easily see how naively my old way of thinking was.  Isn't that always how it goes?

So this is letter is to you, the girl who has everything, with a sincere apology for thinking YOU didn't have anything to do with everything you have, for thinking that everything fell easily on your lap, and well, mostly, for judging you without knowing you. 

Yes, you DO look like you have everything.  And yes it looks completely effortless (and perhaps you may want it to appear that way).

The perfectly bouncy large curled long hair - not quite blonde, not quite brown

The ripped jeans that fall just right on those long legs and somehow look put together even though THEY ARE RIPPED ALL OVER THE PLACE.

The clean house that's decorated impeccably. 

The perfectly dressed children

The list goes on, of course, but I'll refrain. The point is, my dear, shouldn't we be celebrating the effort and not the ability to mask such effort? And believe me, I get the whole Netflix and Chill vibe going on right now and how appearing effortless is and can be appealing.  But isn't it so much more appealing to let people know how hard you work to maintain that lifestyle.  How tired you are at the end of the day.   Because it appears to me, at this moment in my own life, that when you hit your pillow at the end of the day absolutely exhausted, it means it was a day that was LIVED.  So, girl who has everything, thank you for actually LIVING each day hard and teaching me that it's okay to try.  Everything doesn't have to come easily and in fact you SHOULD try at what you want in life. 


Just A Girl


Spring Love

Spring, as always, has felt fleeting, though it still remains.  Those ever pretty cherry blossoms bloom so suddenly, and even more sudden, they disappear. With lots of rain, lots of very chilly days, and now days in the 90s, it never felt like we had that TRUE welcome to spring - you know those days where the sun is just starting to warm up your skin and you dream of those even warmer days.  Where you can walk out in a t-shirt and JUST be warm enough, that is until the sun hides behind a cloud.  

Don't get me wrong, the warmth feels good.  And sweating - hey, I currently don't mind it now that I'm not super pregnant.  It's just amazing what the sunshine can do for ones soul.  I am welcoming with open arms walks outdoors, swinging my baby in her swing, iced coffee, fresh fruit, and blooming flowers everywhere I look.  Spring is good.  Life is good.  Summer is just around the corner.  

Up For A Challenge

Life has been challenging, to say the least.  Both my mind and body feel like they are purely in survival mode.  But there's something to be said about a challenge.  Isn't it amazing what you can accomplish in the hardest of times? I mean survival in itself is pretty remarkable when life really knocks you down, but then everything you do on top of merely surviving - that's just amazing. And then when you eventually come out of the tough time, as you always do, you're THAT much stronger.  And life is THAT much easier.  Because look at ALL THAT YOU DID when it was THAT HARD.  

And don't get me wrong.  I love my life (even in the hardest of times).  I have the best, most loving husband who is more my best friend with each new day.  I have a beautiful daughter that makes me laugh and smile each and every day, even if it's an IMPOSSIBLE day for both her and I.  I have the joy of being able to stay home with her, soaking up all of these moments as a first time mom, and being able to work on my own thing on the side.  Am I getting done as much as I want to with my own work? Absolutely not.  But that's okay.  I remain hopeful that that will come with time.  And in the meantime, I can soak in those small glorious little moments of uninterrupted, exhilarating work.  

And spring.  I mean there is just something so rejuvenating and renewing about spring.  With this new season, I feel a new me approaching each new day.  And it feels good.  Putting in all your effort, making the absolute most out of all the tiny moments of each day, and feeling so exhausted at the end of each day that you could just sleep for a year - yea, I'm currently digging that lifestyle.  Because you know what? Each day is truly a gift.  And having a baby girl growing up so quickly has really put time into perspective for me.  It is OH SO fleeting, and I want to grab every moment of it I can.  

Spring, in all your glory, I'm welcoming you with such open arms it's not even funny.  Okay, maybe it's a little funny.    Happy Friday Folks! 

Hello Stranger

Well, hello stranger.  It's been two months since my last blog post, but more importantly, two months since the last time I've created something.  The thoughts and ideas have been there. And the time has probably been there too.  Yikes, even the energy has been there. But it was an intentional unintentional (yes, you read that right) BREAK from I don't know what. 

Does it feel like it has been two months? Absolutely not.  Here I am with an almost 8 month old crawling at my toes and I just can't believe how quickly time goes.  Yes, I'm a broken record, but man oh man does it fly.  I look at past work, recycling old ideas into new, and when I look at the year in which they're from, I almost cringe.  But time passing can be a blessing.  It can bring clarity that you didn't know you needed, but become very thankful for.  I had two VERY hard days.  Motherhood can be challenging to say the least.  And then here I am today, motivated to work, feeling like myself, excited about today and about the future, seeing so OBVIOUSLY what was missing.  I know we need those bad days in between the good, but it does not make them any easier.  And it certainly doesn't help that they seem endless when they do arrive. 

So here's something I worked on today.  I've been looking a lot at old work trying to figure out my roots again.  What is it I want to create? That, my friends, sounds very exciting to explore. So yay for Friday and yay for freedom - freedom to just explore whatever it is I want to - being a mother, being a contemporary artist, being a studio photographer, being an illustrator, or, best yet, being a combination of all of those things. Happy Friday Folks! 

New Thoughts, New Things

My current schedule seems to be that there's no schedule AT ALL and I am doing my best to embrace it.  Some days it works beautifully, other days I can't help but feel blah.  But that's just life, right? 

What I do know, though, is that dreaming about the subtle warmth of spring and seeing all colorful things start to bloom is making me excited.  And with that excitement comes new ideas and testing out those new ideas.  So here I am, delving into lots of color and lots of nature.  Hoping for lots of new work in time for spring. 

But in the meantime, I am really trying to live each day to the fullest, so even though I am eager for spring, I am trying not to put too much energy there.  Because if I do, I know these days will pass too quickly, without a moment of appreciation or a moment of enjoyment.  So tell me - what are the day to day things you look forward to throughout the winter.  I suppose a hot cup of hazelnut coffee is one for me (hot and flavored coffee tends to be a thing just in the cold weather months for me), although I swear it's not the same without the caffeine (still haven't been back on caffeine since being pregnant, having my daughter, and now nursing her).  As for other things I can look forward to in the winter - I just don't know.  I mean unless, of course, there is a beach vacation booked.  And right now, there is absolutely no beach vacation booked.  So boo there.  Time for a decaf hazelnut coffee to perk me up. 

Happy Tuesday! 

Your Favorite Color

Do you remember all those questions you received as a kid that you answered oh so confidently.  It's a shame that self doubt and embarrassment enter our lives because those questions, as simple as they seemed then, get more and more difficult to answer with each passing year. 

What's your favorite color? What do you want to be when you grow up? Here I am, fully grown, and I really don't have an answer to either.  Yes, perhaps one is more important than the other, BUT I take colors pretty seriously.  And that reminds me - now that I am immersed in all things baby, the book The Day The Crayons Quit is seriously good.  Like next level genius good. And yes, it's more for older kids than for my 5 month old baby, but hey, if I enjoy it, she enjoys it. 

But back to the point of this all - maybe it's important to not know the answers to those questions we were asked as kids because as we grow old, things change.  And change is good. Because change means we're evolving and as human beings we should most definitely always be evolving.  So the question, "What do you want to be when you grow?" up should really be "What's one of the things you want to be when you grow up at this moment of your life?" because maybe life shouldn't be so career based as adults, but more passion based.  Because following your passions with no time commitments and no restraints sounds so much more appealing than being in a career for the longevity of it.  Because reading about all those people who switched careers halfway through their life/career REALLY do seem happier (I always love those stories and if you know of any good ones, send them my way). 

So let's try to answer those two simple questions for this very moment in time. 

What are your favorite colors? Today, mine are turquoise, mustard yellow, and periwinkle blue.

What do you want to be when you grow up? An artist and a mother for certain (well I guess I already am those things).  But also, a teacher, a florist, a baker, a marine biologist, and someone who works with wild animals in some capacity.  

It looks like I have a lot to accomplish in my lifetime! And you know what? That feels really good.  

Just Because

I haven't been posting recently.  And not necessarily on purpose and not necessarily not on purpose.  That makes total sense, right? It's just that I've been thinking a lot about EVERYTHING.  About motherhood.  About my work.  About time.  About sacrifices and about priorities.  The thing is, motherhood changes you.  And maybe that is a completely obvious statement, but for me, it felt sort of monumental when I realized that. 

Before I became a mother, my art and my work consumed me - in the best possible way.  I couldn't imagine ME without my art.  But now, the definition of me has changed because I can't imagine me without this baby.  So it's not necessarily that it doesn't leave time for my work, but more that I want my time to be with her. And it's not mom guilt trying to convince me doing my own thing makes me a bad mom.  It's solely that I want every waking moment with her to be valuable, for both her and me.  Because singing to her and looking her in her eyes feels very different than singing to her while editing pictures to try to get a blog post up by 7 am exactly. 

So what does all this mean? Well it means I'm re-learning who I am and where my priorities stand.  Because right now I want to eat up every second with this baby who is growing faster that I could ever imagine.  Because seeing her take the world in every single day currently makes my heart so full.  And don't get me wrong.  My creativity isn't gone.  And that urge to create is still there, though it may come and go (as it always does).  But since becoming a mother I feel more creative energy than ever before, it just shows itself a little differently than it did before.  So here's to creating when I want to create, posting when I want to post, and to fully live in the moment with my sweet little one. And since exploring this new me, things feel so much more balanced and life feels so much more fulfilling because everything I'm doing I'm doing with intention.  There are no empty gestures here, just purely meaningful moments.  

So on that note, a very happy Monday to you. 

Just A Girl And Her Inspiration - December 2016

(1) (2) (3) (4) (5) (6) (7) (8

I took the above picture (1) a few weeks ago and it screamed out Christmas to me.  Then, Christmas seemed far away, but now, now it's that exciting, joyful, magical time of year. And add some shades of blue to the typical red and green and white and things are feeling fresh and new and exciting.  And who doesn't want to be excited? BEST FEELING EVER. Happy December! Let the festivities begin! 

Oh, and here's a look at last year's inspiration! 

Just A Girl And Her Studies (72)

After such a busy weekend, I'm really trying to slow things down this week and it feels SO good.  I'm getting things done, but taking my time, and I swear one day I'll master this art of slow living.  Because it is for sure the way to live.  So here's another piece I've slowly been working on.  And guess what - slow REALLY is good. 

Just about halfway through the week and that is GOOD too.  

Just A Girl And Her Paint (25)

This weekend was way busier and way more chaotic than I would have liked, but hey, sometimes that's how things go.  So I'm trying to play catch up today even though all I really want to do is decorate for Christmas.  We started our outside lights two weeks ago, but with a baby that naps in 20 minute increments, it's a hard thing to finish! We're still only about halfway done, so here's to hoping it's done before Christmas come around.

Oh Monday, treat us well, will ya? 

Just A Girl Holding Flowers (34)

A Monday for flowers.  Slowly, but surely, the weeks are becoming more and more routine, and that feels GOOD. But just as it always goes, right when things seem to be getting back to normal and settling down something new happens to throw you off.  Hoping the holidays these coming weeks aren't enough to throw me off! Let's kick butt into the new year!


Just A Girl And Her Studies (71)

Things feel like they're falling into place and it feels good.  My goal was to get my studio set up by the end of October, and here we are, in the middle of November and it's not even close to being set up, let alone done.  But - I am getting work done.  And that's the important thing.  So hooray for that.  Oh and it's Friday.  So major hooray for that one. 

Just A Girl And Her Sketchbook (40)

And here we are, just trying to get through another week.  Some weeks are easy.  Some drag on.  Most fall somewhere in between and this week is just that.  But next week is already Thanksgiving, which means Christmas is just around the corner.  And that feels good.  

Our first Christmas with a little one and we can't wait.  But until then - all things fall. 

Just A Girl And Her Sketchbook (39)

There's something so special about the fluidity of watercolors that draws me and my rigid personality in.  Being able to have some control, but really letting them decide for themselves what they are going to do - well that's just plain magic.  And if only I can relay that to my normal, ordinary every day life.  Because we all know I can be a little too in control.  And maybe, just maybe, if I let loose a little bit more some of that magic would come in and out of my life effortlessly.  

Just A Girl And Her Studies (70)

Another new study completed and I finally feel like I'm getting back into the flow of things. This fall has been so amazing and I am trying my absolute best to savor each and every moment of it.  The seasons fly by way too quickly and now that there's a baby in the picture, I seem to close my eyes and we've already moved onto the next. 

There are still quite a few weeks left for this beautiful autumn and I am going to eat them up. Along with pumpkin bread, hazelnut coffee, and deliciously chunky baby thighs.