Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Where I Have Been and What I've Been Doing

So, you might be wondering why I haven't been blogging much and have taken so long to reopen shop. {I'm planning to reopen with these new shoes just after I post this.} The truth is that the summer has been rough so far. You would think that I would come back from our little trip rested and rejuvinated--with at least a week's worth of patient reservoirs stored up. In fact, my patience gets to the point of critical mass on a daily basis. It might appear, since I am currently quite forgetful and terrible at keep in touch, that I have just have become more selfish. The odd thing is that my life has never felt less mine than it does right now. My lovely little children are often wee little consumers of attention and energy and words. Sometimes I feel as though time is like water in a waterfall, and the only time that's mine is what I can reach out and cup in my hands while everything else is pummeling and rushing on by. Sometimes I wonder if I feel like this because of some uniqueness of my personality or the particular dispositions of my children. I often contemplate if all petite little beings have such a knack for trouble as my own.

But, here I am talking in generalities about the difficulties of daily life with two children under 5. What would further my case are specifics. So, perhaps it would be better to tell the story of how when I turned on my Canon 40D SLR camera I discovered a dozen pictures of floor boards taken by one of my children--unbeknownst to me. Or that my daughter seems to be the only 18 month old with enough strength to smash a sippy cup against the wall with enough force to shatter it into pieces {sending a spray of sticky apple juice across my cabinets and newly washed kitchen floor.} Or that Aidan, newly enamored with Spiderman, has taken to calling me Mary Jane and trying to give me open mouth kisses. Or perhaps I could tell you about yesterday when I spit my gum in the toilet {what was I thinking} only to find Mia sprint around the corner 10 minutes later chewing gum; I make the realization and gasp, so she takes the ABC gum out of her mouth and Aidan pops it in his, then offers it to me. *shudder* Or I could tell you that my spitfire of a daughter some how yanked on my flash drive {the very flash drive that houses all my design programs} and seems to have completely ruined both USB ports on our computer. The flash drive is still hanging there, jack-knifed, and I'm afraid to remove it. Perhaps one of these stories will give you a better glimpse into the window of my daily life.

So, you see, life is very busy for me. Extremely so. Today is my birthday--31. Thirty was at least a bench mark, but the big three-one just fells like I am barreling forwards 40. Robert is home today and giving me the gift of a little alone time. So, perhaps I'll get a bit closer to getting my studio organized, as I have been dying to do so. Finally, I have one non-blurry picture of me at 30. I needed a profile picture and realized that I have hundreds of pictures of my children and not one of me where I am non-pregnant and actually looking at the camera. So, here you go. Have a lovely day, friends!
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Thursday, June 25, 2009

Oregon: Vineyards and Beaches

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Over a week ago now, Robert and I took a short getaway to Oregon. We flew into Portland, saw the city with a friend, ate lunch at a brewery, and then drove to Eugene to stay at King's Estates Vineyard. It truly was stately with creamy yellow stuccoed buildings all tiled roofed and maticuloulsy well kept. There was a beautiful reception hall and gourmet restaurant surrounded with alfresco diners, herb gardens, and edible flowers. All this was set on a hill amidst acres of vineyards stretching up and down rolling hills and winding driveways flanked by those tall and skinny iconic Tuscan shrubs.

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Because of Robert's position, King Estate's made complimentary accomodations for us at their private guest house. I wish I would have taken more pictures because it was probably the most romantic place I have every seen. The little arts and crafts cottage was built into the base of a hill under the shade of a massive sequoia tree. It was stocked with all sorts of wine and micro brews and all organic snacks: bread, cheese, chocolates, etc. They had a gourmet dinner from their restaurant waiting for us. The entire back of the house was french doors that opened to the view of a mirror pond--truly stunning.
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During our travels, we went to Eugene's Saturday Market.
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Eugene Market had all sort of great local produce, artisan bread, great coffee, chocolate bouchon--yum.
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Eugene Market had more tye-dye than one person could possibly wear in a lifetime and lost of little handmade wares. I found these odd little tchotchkes particularly interesting.  
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We also visited Archery Summit winery and stayed there. They make only Pinot Noir, a grape growing in particular popularity because of the movie Side Ways. {It's a funny but unexpectedly depressing movie.}
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Robert--the master wine swirler.
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Roses are often planted as an indicator species on vineyards; they often signal a problem before it could become evident in the berries. Plus, it is in keeping with tradition and they are pretty.
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We also hiked Silver Falls which was lovely and peaceful. There are 9 waterfalls, and we could walk behind most of them.
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We concluded our trip at Cannon Beach. Robert and I spent our first 5 years of married life in Holland, Michigan; as newlyweds, we used to spend our free time walking the beach and talking about the future. Cannon Beach was beautiful simply to walk the beach like we had before, talk and dream about the future.
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This is "Hay Stack Rock" on Cannon Beach. I felt it was a misnomers. There is very little Hay Stack-ish about it to me.
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A beach comber took this picture for us. It was very underexposed, but still nice to capture a picture of Robert and I. Our thin Houston blood wasn't quite prepared for the midsty 60-degree weather that evening, but we made a fire and watched the sunset. The next day we flew home.
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Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Sneak Peak

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What a romantic little getaway! While the trip was great, both the leaving and returning has been a lot more chaotic than expected. I have many more pictures and will share those and all the details soon. Missed you, my friends!
Saturday, June 13, 2009

Silver Falls

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"There is a pleasure in the pathless woods,
There is a rapture on the lonely shore,
There is society, where none intrudes,
By the deep sea, and music in its roar:
I love not man the less, but Nature more." ~Lord Byron

I don't think I've mentioned that I grew up on 9 acres of virgin prairie in Northern Illinois, 15 miles away from a store or even a gas station. We had a llama, three goats, a rabbit, two dogs, a couple of cats, and some fish in a coy pond. I guess with all those pets you would think I am an animal lover, when in fact at this point in my life I see pets mostly as something else that needs feeding and cleaning up after. What I am, however, is a nature lover. I spent a summer in college back packing, rock climbing, and white water rafting my way through the Upper Penninsula of Michigan. There were times when I hiked with only a tiny little pack and a sleeping bag {no tent}. I wore Chaco's and had dirty toes and showered at weekly intervals. I woke to the rising sun and fell sleep under the open sky and Northern Lights. It was a magical summer, and I often miss the solace and simplicity of such a life.

So, when Robert told me that he had a business trip in Oregon, we decided to extend the end of his trip for a small getaway. Robert arranged stays at several vineyards for us, and we have plans to go to the Saturday Farmer's Market, hike Silver Falls {pictured above}, swim at Cannon Beach, and drink wine all in between. I can't wait!
Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Just Another Day.....

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.... ya know, hangin' out. Eating blue marker.

This is the face she made when I took it away.
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Saturday, June 6, 2009

Blueberry Picking

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"What can your eyes desire to see, your ears to hear, your mouth to taste, your nose to smell that is not to be had in an orchard, with abundance of variety." ~William Lawson

This weekend we went blueberry picking. It was a bit hot, but we still has fun. Mia especially loved the green ones.
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The bucket on the right is Aidan's.....
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Robert and Aidan cooling off.
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Mia and I in front of the rows of bushes.
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This is our second year going to this farm, and I think we might make it a family tradition. What traditions do you have or hope to fulfill with your family this summer?


* * * * * * * * * * * *
On a side note, I have not been listing anything because my parents have been helping me convert our 4th bedroom into a studio. My mom stopped by my house one day and was greeted by the half eaten waffle on the floor, the dinning room spilling over with shoes and packaging supplies, and my look of aggravation and fatigue. So, kind people that they are, my parents suprised me this weekend and said they were going to help me clear out, paint, and organize all my business sundries into a studio. I am working on it feverishly and can't wait to show you pictures once it's finished!
Wednesday, June 3, 2009

The Camellia Is Back

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I finally got around to making a few more of the Camellia T-Strap Shoe Accessories. In addition, I put together a little wardrobe selection for you. Here are all the items with links:

Green Plaid Ruffle Trim Top by Forever 21
Boot Cut Jeans by Old Navy
Loop Coin Purse by Urban Outfitters
Pinkish Garden Ring by Lori Jacyln's Jewels
Hybrid Vines Necklace by Bionic Unicorn

I have a few more shoe accessories to list, I just need to take the pictures. I need to email several customers, though, and I still need to finish up and relist some bloom shoes. I also have some lovely wide/corset belts in brown and cream for women that I want to sell. I sort of despise the empire, wide and flowing maternity look that is so "in" right now, so I think pairing them up with a wide belt is a lot more flattering. You can get a sneak peak here. Oh, and I need to finish up those pink dresses.... and don't even get me started on how my house looks right now. *sigh* Off to have at it!

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