A little pocket I stitched to glue in my journal. It is part of an envelope I found in my grandfather's office. I have been making small sketches of buds that I will keep in here.
The dogwood outside our bathroom window is starting to bloom. The buds started out as tight, purple-gray, round balls, and then they have opened a little more each day. Right now they are green and purple. Eventually they will be a squarish shape, and white.

Alex loves dogwood trees. (and I love him for that... ♥)
I don't think he was serious, but at some point during both of my pregnancies he mentioned naming the baby Dogwood. Our poor kids with their unusual names... If they every dislike their names when they are older at least I can tell them, "Well, it could have been worse.  You could be named Dogwood." 



Alex and I lived in a rental house after we were married, but I was always longing for our own home. I wanted to be able to have a garden and plant my own tomatoes. To be able to cultivate the soil and be in the same place the next year to reap the benefits.

So on a whim one day I bought a lilac bush at the hardware store. I brought it back to our rental house and Alex looked at me with raised eyebrows. ummmm?

And I told him it was for our future home whenever we found one. And in the meantime it could live in a pot.

And it did. And surprisingly, it survived. And then just one year later, David and Ema invited us to share their land with them. And we found our home.

Here is that same lilac growing her first leaves of this season.  Reminding me with every unfurling how good it is to be home. 


liver cleanse

Alex, David, Ema, and I have been on a liver cleansing diet for 6 weeks now. 6 out of 8. We are loosely following this. I actually haven't been doing the deep cleansing part since I am still nursing and toxins can come out in breastmilk, but I am trying to follow along as best as possible while still listening to my body.

The basic idea of the cleanse is giving your liver a break from foods that bog it down, so it will have a chance to regenerate itself. Thus, enabling it to function better in the future. Foods we have been avoiding: White flour, white sugar, alcohol, red meat and pork, all dairy, some oils, and chicken and eggs the middle month. Foods we have been eating more of: Sourdough and whole wheat breads, fish, vegetables, raw nuts, avocados, coconut, and vegetable and fruit juices. 
This is the first time I have ever done anything like this. I have always been terrified of diets, and even uncomfortable by others doing stuff like this because I felt like I wouldn't have the willpower. But you know what? It has been an awesome experience. Of course I am REALLY looking forward to being done with it and having a dark beer or some ice cream... but it hasn't been nearly as bad or as scary as I was anticipating.

It has opened my eyes to new tastes and gotten us out of our food ruts. I realized how heavily I relied on butter. Really, I put butter on everything.  I have also realized how much I was snacking on processed foods when I didn't think I was. It has gotten Alex and I making oatmeal together every morning too which is so sweet.  I even made a batch of dairy free, sugar free, gluten free muffins that were delicious.

Here is a soup recipe that  I made up that I think is worth sharing:
Coconut & Salmon Soup
1 onion cut up
1 carrot diced
32 oz of broth
2 salmon fillets, cooked and then broken into small pieces
1 can of unsweetened coconut milk
1 fistful of fresh cilantro chopped
1 teaspoon of sesame oil
1/2 teaspoon of fish sauce
some sobo noodles
salt, pepper, & garlic salt to taste

Bake salmon filets until done. Cook sobo noodles. Saute onion and carrot until onion is translucent.
Add everything together.


chicken coop improvements

 Our chickens stopped laying eggs this winter (chickens only produce eggs for about 1/3 of their life). After much deliberation about what to do with them and how to sequence in new birds we decided to try to give away our 28 older birds and simply buy new laying birds so we can start having fresh eggs again.

A few weeks ago we listed the birds for free on craigslist and within 20 minutes we had four calls about them. A very nice couple came and packed the birds up to bring to their farm just hours later (the fate of the birds will be free roaming and one by one make it into the pot).

So after they left, our chicken house stood empty and still half finished from our original construction on it. We decided it was a priority to make the improvements we wanted to do before we got new chickens. As we learned the first time, it is near impossible to work while the chickens are living there.
Alex and David spent two days siding the building, laying down a linoleum floor, and making some new fancy egg laying boxes. You can see the boxes protruding from the side of the house. The eggs will roll down, and we will open up a little door and gather the eggs from outside. This will be easier than our old egg system. Hopefully the eggs will be cleaner (not covered in poop), the chickens won't peck at and break the eggs because they won't be able to reach them after they roll down, and we won't have to walk across  a poopy floor to gather the eggs.

Of course, as with every part of our lives, there is still plenty to do on it~ but we are content with the level of done-ness for awhile.
Now to find some new lovelies for our coop! 



  • pair of vintage ceramic creamer pitcher yellow and teal
    pair of vintage ceramic cr...
    $23.00 USD
  • feathers hand printed linen tea towel
    feathers hand printed line...
    $24.00 USD
  • What a Tool... Vintage Metal Garden Tool Box Caddy Carrier
    What a Tool... Vintage Met...
    $28.00 USD
  • NEW Soft Mustard Handknit Scarf  - Cowl in Mustard Yellow sunflower gold
    NEW Soft Mustard Handknit ...
    $17.00 USD
  • Tulip Magnolia Woodblock Print
    Tulip Magnolia Woodblock P...
    $50.00 USD
  • Linen  pincushion - crochet motif
    Linen pincushion - croche...
    $11.95 USD
  • Clementines
    $35.00 USD
  • Natural Botanical Perfume Oils - Mini Mix-and-Match Set
    Natural Botanical Perfume ...
    $12.00 USD
  • Columns - Color Fine Art Photography -  Print 8 x 10
    Columns - Color Fine Art P...
    $18.00 USD
  • Two Red Clay Buttons in Robins Egg
    Two Red Clay Buttons in Ro...
    $6.00 USD
  • White petticoat with off-white ruffles
    White petticoat with off-w...
    $49.00 USD
  • Pretty Upcycled Wooden Bowl "Aqua Lotus Bowl"
    Pretty Upcycled Wooden Bow...
    $15.00 USD
  • Handpoured Pure Soy Candle Peach Ginger 6 oz
    Handpoured Pure Soy Candle...
    $6.00 USD
  • R u s t i c M o o n . turquoise and moonstone earrings .
    R u s t i c M o o n . turq...
    $28.00 USD
  • MAGNOLIA Tree -Recycled Cotton Canvas- Eco Lunch Bag Set
    MAGNOLIA Tree -Recycled Co...
    $14.00 USD
  • Kate Spain Fabric, Central Park, For Him, in FAT QUARTERS, 9 Total
    Kate Spain Fabric, Central...
    $24.50 USD

And there's something 'bout the Southland in the springtime

I made 
in honor of all of the blooming fruit trees I saw today. 
Please go visit it and check out all the wonderful items!

I think I am in love with spring this year.

journal page


best parts

best part of Sunday: Drinking homemade carrot apple juice with the family all piled on the couch in the morning and all cheers-ing again and again. Seo had his mouth hanging open in a grin he was so happy to be clinking his sippy cup.
best part of Monday: Checking out our little water feature with Lil and finding that some of the frog eggs we have been keeping an eye on hatched into eensy tadpoles. She could barely contain herself she was so excited about it.
best parts of today (Tuesday): #1. Putting a movie on for Lil when Eliseo went down for his morning nap~ and me getting to work on my earrings while I drank coffee and watched a netflix show on my computer.  #2. Eating  a family dinner while it was still light out (!) of a delicious coconut salmon cilantro soup I made.

what bests are you having?



Lil at 6 months
Seo at 12 months

It couldn't be a prettier, springier day today. The kids and I went for an early morning walk. We picked some forsythia and smelled all the flowers we could find. Lil cupped the daffodils so gently in her hands, and she called them daff-o-dillies.

Right now we have the door cracked, and the breeze is floating in. The clouds are streaming by in the bright blue sky.  If it weren't for thinking about all the devastation in Japan I would be so blissed out right now. Or maybe I am blissed out, and the concern I feel for those affected is floating through the day like the coulds... Either way, it is heavily on my mind. Particularly the nuclear situation. As a mom,  nuclear energy makes my stomach turn. Okay, well enough about that.

On the bright side,  the couple friends I know in Japan are okay. For that I am grateful. 


pattern making

Lil and I made our patterns. I love hers, but don't fancy mine. We used this tutorial that I mentioned a week or two ago. I am excited to show the final result to her when she wakes up in the morning. I messed something up with that last photo, but I think the pattern is still good.

I was a fun little project to do with her. : )



On our daily walk.
 I am glad I can share these images here, because when the two of them were standing together I was almost pinching myself they were so cute. Plus it looked like Lili was going to hop on Atticus and ride away...

* For more kid love: click Here to see Seo walking & Here to see Lili jumping.


new work

I have been in bed with the stomach bug for the last 3 days.
It stunk.
But one of the positive things that happened while I was down was bringing this little bird back to life.
 I don't know if you noticed, but she got whitewashed out of the painting I am currently working on.
Luckily, I took a photo before I erased her, and now she is the star of this sweet digitally compiled illustration. It took me forever to get it the way I wanted; but I am so pleased by how it turned out.

In addition to being sick, the past week has brought the visits of Alex's Dad and Laurie, my Mom, and Alex's Mom.
Eliseo also got terribly sick in there too for a few days... but now he is all better.  A lot of highs, and some yucky lows.

There was also a lot of rain. And you know what?  buds. are. everywhere....  : )


African music

Last night Alex and I watched Bela Fleck's documentary called "Throw Down Your Heart" about his journey to bring the banjo back to Africa. I thought it was gripping and so sweet. As always, I found myself envious of some of the singing traditions there. The stories and song seem to be woven into daily life in a way I can barely grasp. Here is a short video that sums his trip up, but I would recommend watching the whole thing!

Also along a similar theme, this is a kickstarter (Have you heard of Kickstarter?????) project started by Lili's music teacher's son.
He has been in Africa on a Fulbright scholarship, and has made an amazing album giving a human voice to widespread AIDS/HIV problem there through music. To bring it to fruition, he has one month to raise $10,000.  I know any that any little bit you can donate will help see his meaningful project through.

Hmmmm... as I am putting a plug in for everyone else to join in, I am realizing that I haven't yet. I have been meaning to... but.... I think after I viewed it I got distracted by browsing through Kickstarter. Feeling inspired by the plethora of amazing projects and talents out there, and dreaming of my own big projects and ideas...  Hopefully by writing this I will follow through with my intention to pitch in~ because ultimately, it makes me feel good to be a part of inspiring and positive projects like this.

Please check it out! And Here to donate. ♥


tuckered out

We came upstairs to put her to bed last night, only, we found her asleep like this on the floor.