The Downsides to Being a Pumpkin

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Tonight I was drinking whiskey in my kitchen because I thought that might help jumpstart my dishwashing, and I thought about the pumpkins. When you think about pumpkins, you probably think about their namesake pie, or their disgusting Starbucks drink (shots fired!), or how people put their offspring in them for adorable photo ops. But let’s take a moment to consider the other side of pumpkins, the less glamorous side.

EXHIBIT A:
October 1: I need pumpkins on my doorstep, I need pumpkins in the entry, I definitely need these tiny pumpkins in my kitchen, GIVE ME ALL THE PUMPKINS!!!

November 1: OKAY CUMBERSOME ASSHOLES, YOUR STAY IS UP. [Can’t fit the pumpkins in the trashcan, lacks the caliber of animal to feed the pumpkins to, cannot throw in the backyard because I live in the suburbs and the guy whose house backs to ours probs wouldn’t love, can’t throw in street, GET OUT OF MY LIFE, YOU PUMPKINS] (But really, what do I do with these now? Help.)

EXHIBIT B:
October 1: I love this wall of pumpkins when I walk in the grocery store!! It makes me feel so joyful!

December 1: GET THESE GOURDS THE F AWAY FROM ME WHY ARE THEY STILL HERE.

In conclusion: It must be rough to be a seasonal squash.

Trends // Athletic Wear Inspired

Fashion, Gathered

Have you guys noticed how popular athletic wear is right now? It’s been on the runway for the past couple of seasons, but the big Birkenstock boom last year really drove home how mainstream it has become. Personally, I’ve been doing the athletic wear thing way before last year. Some might have called it lazy, but I like to think of it as ahead of the trends. I’m like Kanye and his leather jogging pants, just less angry.

Anyway, I’m glad we’re finally all on the same page. Let’s examine some shoes.

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// 1. I would wear these sandals by Teva x Woolrich way more than I should probably admit. I think Teva is going to have a pretty big resurgence this year.

// 2. I would never spend $950 on sneakers, but if you would, I encourage you to buy these Tom Ford dreamboats.

// 3. These gold slides by Vince have a great minimalist/luxe vibe going on. You could wear them with everything.

// 4. The cool kids have been wearing Vans since the 60’s. These burgundy slip-ons have a very Bottega Veneta feel to them, for about $600 less.

// 5. Hear me out on this one: I used to say, EW SNEAKER WEDGES and then one day I came home from the mall with a pair of sneaker wedges (sometimes I don’t know who I am) and THEY ARE FOOT PILLOWS, you guys. Little, portable foot pillows. These Jeffrey Campbell sneakers remind me of the Fendi monsters.

// 6. I’m not exactly sure what is going on here, but I like it. These Loeffler Randall perforated slip-ons seem like they’d be comfy and convenient, which is what all the best shoes should aim to be.

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Flower Embellished Sunglasses DIY

Crafts, DIY, Fashion

So the other night after I wrapped up the toddler jewelry post, my son asked me if I could make him a flower out of Sculpey.

I spent a little while playing around with the clay yesterday afternoon and figured out how to make the cutest little flowers. And then I couldn’t stop making flowers and I ended up making a million tiny clay flowers. And then I started scouring my house for things to glue said tiny flowers to (take it from me that impulse hot-gluing is generally a bad idea). Luckily for my husband, children, and pets, my search didn’t really yield any results of things that were begging to be bedazzled (beflowered?). But luckily for my me, a quick trip to Forever21 produced a few pairs of cheap sunglasses with my name all over them. They actually say “Made in China” but you know what I mean.IMG_7998IMG_8037

Here’s What You’ll Need:

Sunglasses
Sculpey or other polymer clay
Hot glue gun and glue sticks

Preheat your oven to 270 degrees. Cut off a chunk of clay. Knead it until it soften a bit, and then roll it into a little snake.FullSizeRender-15FullSizeRender-18

You like my manicure? It’s called “busy and I always peel off the Shellac even though they tell you not to”. Very in style, I hear.

Then you take that snake, and cut it into little chunks. You will need five little chunks for each flower.FullSizeRender-17

I’m not being very precise in measurements because both the amount of clay you use, and the size of the chunks both depend on how many flowers you want to make, and how big you want them to be. More clay = more flowers. Bigger chunks = bigger flowers.

Once you have all your chunks cut, roll each one into a nice little ball.FullSizeRender-20

Once you’ve rolled all the pieces into balls, carefully squish each one. You want them to be flat, but be careful not to press them so hard that the edges crack. Crack is whack. Also it will make ugly flowers.FullSizeRender-14

To make a flower, gently peel five of the dots up, and carefully overlap them in a little row. Once they’re in a row, lightly press on the spots where they overlap, so they fuse together a bit. Then, starting from the right side, gently roll the line of dots into itself.FullSizeRender-19

Once you have it rolled up, use a knife to cut the top part off. This will be the flower, so don’t cut it too short. FullSizeRender-13

I have no idea why I rolled it into a tadpole. That was overkill.

And then you repeat those steps over and over again, until you have your desired amount of flowers. Once you’ve got all your flowers, toss them in the oven for about 18 minutes. 
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Once the flowers have cooled, go crazy with your glue gun!

Here’s what I ended up with: Processed with VSCOcam with f2 presetProcessed with VSCOcam with f2 preset

You may notice that the flowers I used on the glasses are completely different colors than the ones in the tutorial. When I said I made a million flowers, it was a slight exaggeration, but I definitely made a lot.

And here’s a selfie, because I thought the glasses looked appropriate with my sweater:

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Happy crafting!

Useful Baby Gifts

Gathered, Motherhood

Our oldest will be five soon. As far as I can tell, everything about parenthood can be divided into two columns: “the stuff that everyone tells you about it”, and “you literally could not make this up”. It is thrilling, and joyful, and frustrating, and exhilarating, and terrifying, all at the same time. As your baby learns and grows, you do too. Somewhere in those blurry, first days you make the transition from “I have no clue what I’m doing” to “this is exactly what I was made to do” and sometimes, “I know exactly what I’m doing, thanks stranger at the grocery store!”

Sometimes I would give so much to hold that tiny, cooing version of the small human who sometimes calls me dude when he is frustrated with me now. (I know it’s been a week since you last tried but NOPE, STILL NOT OKAY.)

I was going through the kids’ closets the other day and I started thinking about the most useful things we bought or received when they were babies and there were definitely some things on that list that I have no idea how we’d have survived without. So I thought I would share my list of very useful things, for baby and mom.

// For Baby

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Etsy Round-Up

Art, Gathered

Heyyo. Look who’s back before February!

I’m definitely in the “feeling organized and productive” stage of the new year. It’s a welcome reprieve from the past couple of months where I was in the “finger foods and champagne” phase. That wasn’t very conducive to writing, so cheers to the new year! Maybe with kombucha, though. Please, no more champagne.

Speaking of being productive, I have been working on a couple of Etsy orders that I got this weekend. Etsy is cool because it allows me to scratch that crafting itch without drowning my family in nautical flag banners that I would have otherwise made for no other reason than “because I felt called to”.

Etsy is also one of my favorite places to spend 3 hours scrolling through teapots find unique things for myself and my house. I’m always so blown away by the amount of talent on there. So I decided I would do an occasional round-up of some of my favorite things on the big E.

1 // Emily McDowell “It’s Too Early” Mug

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Various Things I Bought in 2014, Reviewed

Gathered

It’s December 30th. I could wax poetic about how it’s been another great year of learning and growing and highs and lows and self discovery and yada yada, but I’ll spare you. Instead I thought I would share with you, dear readers (probably just my mom now since I dropped the ball on blogging), reviews of some of my purchases of 2014. You know, the important stuff in life.

In no particular order at all, let’s begin:

Oops, I Didn’t Blog in Forever

Art, Fashion, Pretty Things

Dear Diary (blog),

Sorry that it’s been so long since we’ve spoken. I’m not really sure what happened. It’s like one minute we were the best of friends and then a few weeks passed and we hardly even know each other anymore.

If you were wondering what I’ve been up to, here are some recent pictures from my phone and other things I’ve been doing/loving lately:

// Kindah Khalidy had a .01 cent painting sale and I bought a couple. She’s an amazing painter/textile designer with a knack for making things that look like they were made by a 4-year old, but you couldn’t pull it off if you tried. I love that her art is childish and whimsical and both simple and complex at the same time.

Not one of the one cent paintings; Kindah Khalidy, $650

Not one of the one cent paintings; Kindah Khalidy, $650

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Personalized Canvas Tote Bag For Bridesmaids or Anyone Else DIY

Crafts, DIY

I can’t really say very much regarding bridesmaids. I think I may have been one twice in my life, both times before the age of 18. My husband and I eloped at the San Diego County Courthouse, so the closest thing I had to bridesmaids were the 7 other random women who made appointments to be married around the same time we were. Anyway- I was going to title this “Bridesmaid Gift Bag DIY” because that is a thing that lots of people buy (according to Etsy) and these fit the bill perfectly. But then I thought that the people who read my blog that I know in real life would be like, that’s weird coming from the girl who got married on a Tuesday at the courthouse. (3% of my blog subscribers are currently my mom. Heyy!)