Saturday, August 25, 2012

Rad friends

See, I am so lucky because I have these really rad friends who invite us to do these unique and fun activities. I mean, the kind of activities that my kids will talk about for days. Butterfly exhibit? Had no idea that existed. Hayrack ride at Heritage Park with hot dogs and s'mores over a fire afterward? Holy great idea. Roller skating? Yep, been there a million times growing up but never considered it for my kids. Well thank you AMY because we love it all. And we are blessed to be invited. On Wednesday, we went to Skate City (formerly Skateland South). I have spent many a Friday night here in my middle school days. Never imagined I'd be skating my little chicklins around and watching them giggle, dance and sweat all at the same time.

High school friends - coming back here felt like being a the Twilight Zone. It looks exactly the same. Yet, back then I thought it was so much bigger.

Remember those round sitting benches?

Walkers equals much less frustration for the kids. Walkers equals independence.

Apparently my children get a hold of my iPhone a lot and do crazy things like make silly faces and take  photo booth pictures. I find these in my photo stream and have to laugh.

Cole is really into Where's Waldo books right now. He knows where every Waldo is already yet he is proud of himself for "finding" it each time. Then I throw a wrench into things and tell him to find the Wizard and it slows him down a little.

Today was Lily's first soccer game. Saturday morning. 8 AM. As we walked in, we said "and so it begins. The world of weekend sports for our kids." We have heard about this. We know that life gets crazy with practices, games, new jerseys, meeting new friends, etc. It is starting. And I think we will love it.

Twenty-one days ago Lily started begging me for a lego set - this one to be exact.

We spent 21 days "earning" it by her doing extra chores, being extra considerate, helping out her brother, etc. We marked the calendar and every morning she counted down the number of days until she got her set. We got it today. We came home at 11 am and she worked on it until 4:30. She said she "didn't have time" to eat lunch so we forced her to eat a granola bar at 1 pm. With a lot of help from her daddy, she finished it. All.

She completely amazes me. My brain doesn't work the way hers and Daddy's works. Give me instructions on how to put something and I can't get through step 4 without needing to step away to clear my head.

Hilarious thing: Lily flaps her arms and legs when she gets excited. I kept hearing pounding on her floor all afternoon, knowing full well that those arms and legs were a flappin'. I'll be so sad when that trait of hers goes away.

As far as Lily Cole Designs, embroidery has been keeping me busy. Here are 2 orders I just finished last week. I absolutely adore this child's drawings. It is such a beautiful thing to see what their little hands create.

And a NEW illustration! Zac Brown Band is our fave band and this line (from Highway 20 Ride) has always touched me. There is no statement that better describes how I feel about my little family. I want to hang this in both kids' rooms and our bedroom. I'm sure I won't, but I would. I'm crazy like that.

And some other exciting & amazing opportunities for Lily Cole Designs are forming - details to come.
Happy rest of weekend everyone! Grandparents are coming tomorrow and we can't wait!!

Thursday, August 16, 2012


I have felt an undercurrent of anxiety for the past several days in anticipation of the big day - Lily's first day of Kindergarten. I knew Lily would likely rock it. And she did. A few tears from me. A few from Lily. Yet all in all, we survived. And I think she will LOVE Kindergarten. I only have a few minutes to post a few pictures, so here they are.

We took Grandma Janie to her Orthopedic appointment this morning and met Great Papa and Nanci there. I love that my 91 year old grandpa can still hold Cole on his lap.

Mom: "Lily, whatever you do, don't smile." Usually works. Ate at Subway right before first day of Kindergarten.

Mom: "Lily can we put the backpack next to you for the picture?"
Lily: "No mom, I want to sit on the backpack."

Lily was thinking "Ok, but you aren't going to leave, right?" Tears just after this was taken. But they only lasted a minute. Brave girl.

And this was Lily's first soccer practice with her elementary school kindergarten team last night.

Gotta run. Hope all the other kiddos did great today - from my friends it sounds like all went well. Big day!

Sunday, August 5, 2012

Treasure this...

I haven't been this excited about a new product for a while. This idea came to me while brainstorming Father's Day gifts for my dad. I needed something special...I mean, really special...that he would treasure. And something that is READY for him to put up. I didn't want anything he needed to buy a frame for. Finally, I wanted something that was sentimental from his grandchildren. So...I asked my kids "what would you like to say to Papa Chip for Father's Day?" I am sure there are many other creative questions that would yield cooler answers. They said "we love you Papa Chip." So I asked Lily to write it down. She did. And I adore her little 5 year old handwriting. The less perfect, the better. Give me an "E" that is 10 inches tall or give me backwards letters that all run together. I took the words she wrote and embroidered them onto a fabric color that is one of my dad's favorite colors and I kept it in the rustic little wooden embroidery hoop.

It was also special to write a little handwritten message on the hoop.

Since then, I've had the pleasure of making a few more:

My dear friend's daughter just wrote this to her mama one day and I knew right away it just had to be embroidered as a keepsake.

And this is a wee tiny one (4 inch hoop; others are 6 inch hoops) that we made for Great Grandma Kasey's birthday.

So so excited that these are finally listed in my Etsy shop here:

My goal is to offer an affordable gift that the recipient will truly treasure. Husbands/fathers - this would be so incredible for your wife's birthday, or for Mother's Day. It would be so special for Grandmas and Grandpas too. Ok, I hate the sales pitch nonsense - not at all why I do this - so I'm stopping now. I'm just so excited about the idea of it that I can't contain myself. ;-)

Other new products that will soon be launching include personalized thank you cards for kids. Here are some examples:

These can be printed as flat or folded cards, 4 by 6 or 5 by 7. As always, personalization, customization and changes can be made at no extra cost. 

I am in the process of working on new designs for girls...and I have mocked up mermaids and princesses. I welcome any ideas and I LOVE custom work, so send ideas my way!

Additionally, lately several customers have sought out the "you are my sunshine" print as an invitation to their daughter's birthday party. Cute!

Finally, a new set of prints was added to the shop recently. Twinkle Twinkle Little Star - with a superhero. Nobody can accuse me of not incorporating my daily life into my art. ;-)

Of course, the superhero will be customized to the little boy in your life. ;-) Here is my little superhero...who always wants to fly to the moon.

Signing off. Happy week everyone!!