July 18, 2014
So this week flew by and my promise to myself to blog again post baby has been derailed by a few sleepless nights, doctors appointments and little free time, but I have not abandoned this blog. Quite the contrary. What little free time I have had, I have been working on my website to incorporate a new blog design, working on some prints and some studio updates and projects. All in good time. Hope everyone has a wonderful summer weekend. Cheers.
July 11, 2014
We are smack dab in the middle of summer and life couldn’t be better. Last summer we were basically nomads, our home was undergoing renovations. Living in my in-laws basement and driving up to Maine every weekend to see my sister. This summer we are total home bodies. Playing in the backyard. Nesting with our new baby boy, and just staying at home enjoying our house. While I know, I cant sit still for long, (I am working on a few work projects and ready to get back into regular blogging), I am also forcing myself to enjoy this quiet, home life of our summer.
June 3, 2014
As I, not so patiently, await baby #2, I am filling my days with all sorts of craziness. Tying up loose work ends and getting all my new website materials to the talented ladies at JSGD. Nesting like crazy, the hubs and I pressure washed, sanded and painted the porch floor last weekend. And basically acting like a crazy 9 month pregnant lady. Here are some images from my last week.
A little rainy day outing on Newbury Street. I just love how the city looks in the rain.
Family outing to the zoo.
A walk in a secret garden we found. I guess they don’t call Newton the “garden city” for nothing. I am looking forward to a summer of exploring with my little ones.
Now, come on baby #2. At this point I will be much more mobile with him out than in my belly. It is like wielding around a 30 lb, very uncomfortable, beach ball attached to my stomach.
May 8, 2014
May 7, 2014
..until it just happens. The blogging and social media world is full of the humble brag, and I am just as guilty as the next person. Look at the gorgeous vacation I am on. Look at my fabulous photo shoot and all the amazing people with whom I am working. Look at all my accomplishments. As a small business owner and entrepreneur, social media is an invaluable and important tool in staying connected, networking and gaining clients, but rarely do we hear about the failures. The bid you lost out on, the unhappy client, the failures. What business owner in their right mind would talk about their failures?!?! We share so much on social media, but rarely do we share this. Well I am here to share a failure, a time when I was unable to make a client happy. Through whatever fault, my work, their opinion, their expectations, my not meeting them, whatever, end of the day they were not happy. And despite trying to make them happy through all resources I had at my disposal, I couldn’t.
Being the teacher’s pet, A+ student and people pleaser that I am, this was a particularly hard pill to swallow (I am a total Libra). I know I should embrace this as a learning experience. Perhaps challenge myself, hone my craft more and evaluate how I understand my clients’ expectations in order to better achieve them…or realize I am not the right person for the job. The world of Silicon Valley and start-ups seem to wear failure with a badge of honor. In fact 75% of startups fail, but their founders seem to pick-themselves up and move onto the next venture. (It certainly helps they have the backing of millions of dollars and VC firms, but I digress.) I don’t want to fear failure, but it still isn’t fun. So I am owning it, learning from it and moving on. Hoping it will make me better. Heck, I had to have tons of crushes, bad dates and boyfriend failures before I found and realized my husband was the one, so moving onward. Do you all have any failures that have made you better? Professionally? Personally?
April 28, 2014
Now that our daughter is on a school schedule we get to/need to indulge in the school holidays. I tried to stay home and work through her winter break and the poor thing was bored to tears, so for spring break we packed up and headied down south to see my family. At less than 6 weeks until my due date with baby #2 I am border line for travel, but I was determined to get in some beach time. It was a long winter (as many of you experienced as well) and my body was in desperate need of some vitamin D.
April 16, 2014
I use to journal all the time. Pre-husbnad, pre-baby, pre-Boston, I have volumes of mole skin notebooks chronicling my 20-somthing life stacked in boxes in my studio. The journals were mostly self indulgent rants about boyfriends, work, friends, school, etc. but I journaling helped me work out many a problems and the seemingly daily crises, especially when my sister, mom and friends were sick of hearing the same issues over and over again. That said, they were meant for me and me only. I should probably burn them before my daughter is old enough to find the collection and cringe and her self-indigent mother, but something keeps me from pitching them. Perhaps it is honoring that young woman who felt the need to write and vent or perhaps I think there is some wisdom hidden among my spelling errors and bad grammar. Who knows, but as my life got busier with a business, marriage, home and family my writing waned. I still keep a steady stream of mole skin notebooks, but they mostly consists of lists, projects and reminders than writing and sketching.
As I am expecting my second child, having old journals to flip back through might help me remember all those newborn peculiarities. How to swaddle, when does “sleep regression” happen, first tooth, and how I “really” felt in those beginning months; joy, fear, exhaustion, or simply just something to look back on those early days of my daughters life So the buck stops here. The ladies over at The Everygirl have issued a 30 day challenge to journal for the month of April and I accept Granted I am jumping in at the half way mark, but I figure better late than never and hopefully I will keep going, even as baby #2 arrives and life gets thrown upside down in that wonderful way all over again.
April 8, 2014
I promised myself I would blog more. I love the exercise of creating a post, whether it be a series I shot over the weekend, updates on my home, or sharing a recent project, but here I am struggling to get at least one post a week. Lately I have been working away on projects I can’t quite share yet, getting my house complete or just chasing after my (very) energetic two year old, which at 32 weeks pregnant is no easy task. I am feeling that third trimester fatigue where I feel at any given moment I could just close my eyes and instantly be asleep. Of course not at night though, because as I lay down, that is when the baby in my belly decides it is time to practice some intricate Jazzercise routine. And this is my house this morning, post toddler drop off, as I wait for a workman, before I go into the studio. Oh the glamorous life.
Ok, rant over. Back to work. Where it that workman…
April 3, 2014
Yesterday marked the 1 year date from the closing of our “new” home. Which built in the 1880’s, required some extensive work. There was an illegal 3 bedroom apartment on the 3rd floor, the former owner made cosmetic teeth in the basement. Not to mention the old knob and tube wiring we found hidden in every wall, and failed floor joists in half of the 1st floor.
The architectural planning and renovation process began quickly after the purchase and 5 months into the process we moved in (no kitchen sink at that point, but we had walls and some running water on the second floor.) A year later we finally find ourselves at the “punch list” point for this phase. Buying and renovating an old home is a labor of love to say the least and we went through many love/hate phases during the year, but they truly do not make homes like this anymore. Each 5 panel ladder door was milled specifically for my house, for that specific doorway. And let me tell you, after removing, sanding, and repainting every single interior door ourselves, those suckers are solid old growth wood, built stronger than any recent manufactured door I have ever seen. They must weigh at least 50 lb each. Not to mention the old hardware which we stripped layers and layers of paint to revile a beautiful rose brass.
I feel an intimate connection with our home. I feel like I know every inch, every detail and really appreciate the craftsmanship and detail found in our 130 year old home. Which makes this recent article in the NY Times, alerted to me via Elements of Style all the more upsetting. Apparently, famous New York designer Mario Buatta purchased a beautiful 1840’s Gothic revival home 20 years ago, with the plans of renovating and restoring it. Flash forward to to today, he has done nothing. In fact the home stands in worse shape and is rotting away. I think it was his poor health initially stalled the project, but comments like “This is not a communist country, you can do anything you want with your property,” but makes me think his ego and spite are more involved. Renovating and restoring an old home is not for the faint of heart. I know, but so should this seasoned designer. I find it baffling he would let such a work of art and craftsmanship rot away. Ugh. So gross. There is a petition pleading with Mr. Buatta to come to his senses and just sell the place to someone who will save it.Christopher Capozziello for The New York Times
On the home front update
We are working away to get all the little details finished before baby #2 arrives in early June. Which by the looks of my calendar is rapidly approaching. Eek.
The other weekend I styled and organized our library book shelves. All photos via iPhone…will do real photos someday, I promise. Anyway, a work in progress as we watch basketball.
Coming along. Just need to figure out what to do with that upper gallery. I want to continue to add to our book collection, but I am determined to do so slowly and deliberately to ensure our library reflects us and the books we actually read. So figuring out some place holders as our library grows.
The living room is coming along. I got these chairs from Jordan’s Furniture of all places, for a great price and they are super comfy. I think they look like RH chairs, but were a fraction of the price. (Need to steam the skirts.)
Kitchen is complete! Could use some rugs and picture on the walls, but that is to come.
The 3rd floor. So we gutted, foam insulated, added a new HVAC system and put up blue board to that 3 bedroom apartment on the 3rd floor I was talking about and reconnected it to the main house. Future dream plans, include making it a media room/game room with a joinng guest suite and full bathroom. The plumbing is all up there, we just need to give our bank account a rest. Right now it looks like this…but I are working hard to get complete organization before baby. I have already had about 3 car loads of stuff hauled off to Good Will.
March 18, 2014
The calendar may show spring’s arrival this week, but our temperatures here in New England show it is on the slow train this year, so I have decided to bring it inside! The days are getting longer and our new home seems to be perfectly situated to get gorgeous sunlight throughout the day. I am so glad I went with a warm light gray (Benjamin Moore Athena) throughout most of the house (save my black library). It really seems to catch the light, keeping things bright, but also warm. To add some spring in doors I bought some of those cheep grocery store bouquets, (ya know, the ones with a lot of “filler flowers” in them) and separated them out into these lovely barnacle shaped containers I got at TJ MAXX. I really love the sprawling wild flower look.