Thursday, April 30, 2009

A break...

I'm going to take a little break from blogging for a few weeks. I need to rethink where this blog is going, and how much personal information I want to share. I love blogging, and actually want to do much more of it than I have been currently, but I'm not sure the way I want to go about it. So, I'm off to think!

Thursday, April 23, 2009

A reminder about the upcoming Mother's Day

I don't think I'll get around to designing a Mother's Day card this year. I had lots of cute ideas, and even sketched them out, but each time I tried to finish one I'd start sobbing. I probably should have stuck with flowers and hearts instead of drawing mothers and babies...

But I did want to put up this reminder, at the very least: Please, please, please don't forget to celebrate ALL of the mothers in your life this year, not just your own.

Celebrate mothers who lost their babies - whether they lost their baby at six weeks of pregnancy or 41 weeks or at five years. If you are a mother, you know how real that baby is from the moment you find out you're pregnant. You sense that soul living inside you. You feel all the love in the world for that child and would sacrifice your very own life for it. In pregnancy, you spend every waking hour with your child, thinking about them, worrying about their well-being, hoping and dreaming and praying about their future. Every woman who has been pregnant is a mom. Celebrate her!

Celebrate adoptive mothers. Celebrate foster mothers. Celebrate women who acted as a mother to you in your life. Celebrate women who are pregnant. Celebrate godmothers. Celebrate your friends who are mothers.

I used to say all the time that "I'm not a card person." It's not really my "love language" to give gifts or remember holidays or birthdays, and never really felt that it was too important to send cards. But when my baby died in November, and cards flowed in by the hundreds, I realized what a meaningful thing card-giving really was. During that period of shock and deep sadness, going to the mailbox was the one thing I had to look forward to every day - a reason to get out of bed and stop crying. Now I'm a card person, hands down.

So, send cards to all the mothers in your life this Mother's Day. It will mean so much that you thought of them. Or give them corsages to wear to church on Sunday. Or just give them a hug and wish them a very happy Mother's day.

Here are some cute card ideas from Etsy:

from byvikINK

from InvitaPaperStudio

from Earmark

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Me... celebrate Earth day?

For most of my life, I rolled my eyes when Earth day rolled around. When I was a kid, I wasn't into the whole "save the whales" thing; I never had an obsession with dolphins; my back-to-school shopping never included buying recycled notebook paper. To me, saving the earth was some abstract idea meant to make people feel guilty, but I didn't think you could actually make any long-term difference as an individual.

Then I started thinking about getting pregnant. I wanted to be as healthy as possible for the new little one.

And stumbled on some great reading material: I started with Nourishing Traditions, which made me question everything I thought I knew about diet and health. Then I moved onto The Omnivore's Dilemma, which blew my mind. I suddenly realized that pesticides sprayed on some random strawberries in some random country, didn't just affect the bugs eating the strawberries. The farm workers were getting sick from the pesticides, the whole county nearby would get sick drinking the water that would run off the farm, the animals would ingest the pesticides and we'd end up eating those animals (and strawberries!), and somewhere along the line, even the soils would become unbalanced and unhealthy... Oh, and then there's the whole issue of the strawberries being shipped long distances, using up our fossil fuels, and polluting our air. And it isn't just some abstract person's air, it's MY air, the air we're all breathing.

I kept reading up on the subject, and landed on the book "The Complete Organic Pregnancy," and then completely turned my life around. No longer was I going to think about environment the same way. It wasn't just "the environment," it was MY environment! The things we wear, touch, slather on, eat, and breathe, can expose us all to toxins! So, I started using biodegradable cleaning products, healthy beauty products, started using glass instead of plastic (especially for food!), got an organic mattress for my baby's crib, now use a fabric shower curtain instead of vinyl, started eating only organic food, and the list continues!

Now, I look for ways to buy healthy, handmade, local products wherever and whenever I can. Buying a product directly from the person who made it is by far the healthiest consumer habit. Etsy is one of my favorite ways to do that. How is it healthier?
  • no involvement of a big factory, polluting our air and water
  • there's little to no waste involved : your item is only created when there's a need!
  • products on Etsy often use recycled or "upcycled" goods: meaning no outgassing of new plastics, no new materials made, nothing added to the landfill!
  • less packaging!!!! you didn't buy that item because of its flashy plastic container and label - you bought it because it was great in and of itself!
  • and the benefits are even more monumental for your kids: you can buy wooden or cloth toys (since plastics have been linked to cancer, hormone imbalances and more), clothes and bedding made from natural fabrics, etc!
I Etsy :)

(I mean, how could you pass up these cute little slippers from prettylittle, anyway?!)

(Or this fabulous purse from fiaz co?!)

Monday, April 13, 2009

Easter 2009

Happy Easter, everyone.

My holiday highlights:
  • It felt wonderful to be back in my pre-pregnancy size, in a happy pastel (dress above, from jcrew).
  • It's so liberating to worship my God and thank him for the hope of salvation and oneday meeting with Him and my daughter again in heaven. Easter is by far the most hopeful of all holidays!
  • The weekend was extra special because it was the kick-off of a great new event that my husband has been working toward for years: the Grace Epidemic. Check it out!

My holiday low:

  • I had a hard time just thinking about how it would have been Grace Evangeline's first Easter, and how I would've done her blonde hair with a little velcro bow and had her wear the cutest ruffly outfit (that would've matched me and Jeffrey's outfit colors). I had so many fun things planned for her first year.... And it was incredibly hard yesterday at church seeing so many babies that were my baby's age.
I also wanted to take a second to share some new projects I've been working on. These are a few of the MANY I have on my plate:

New Salon Service Menu: This new menu folds to a perfect square. It's a very simple, sleek, no-nonsense kind of design - the kind that makes my heart sing! (Click images for a semi-closer look)

Turtle Birthday Invitation
: I created this custom design for a friend. Although I would have never thought to come up with a turtle design on my own, it was a fun challenge and now I'm selling it in my Etsy shop!

Coming in the next weeks: a new client website, Peacock wedding invitations, Mother's day cards, and more!