Sunday Photography

Camera: Nikon D90
Focal Length: 50mm
Aperture: 1.4
ISO: 400
Shutter Speed: 1/640




When I was visiting Luc
I noticed a couple pillows
on her big leather couch.

I asked.

As if I needed to.

I asked her how she made them.
Did she buy a pattern?
Where did she learn.

She said it was just an envelope pillowcase
and that she sort of
kind of
did it.

I decided I would try it.
Because it's Friday.
Because it's Halloween weekend.
And because, for the first time since moving here SIX MONTHS ago,
the weather is

I texted Luc,
told her I was about to try it.
"Don't overthink it,"
she said.

And so,
I didn't.

The fabric
was a gift from Luc.
I had admired it
Then, one day,
it was in the mail.

I love good mail days.

Pattern: Improvised
Fabric: Awesome
Skill level: Uber beginner, as that's what I am.

Hope you love 'em as much as I do.



Studio Sale

About a month ago
I participated in Heather Ross's annual studio sale.
It sold out in 20 minutes.

Here's how it worked:
Interested parties were instructed to send Heather a request
how much they'd like to spend
and what kinds of items they'd like to find in their mailbox
when all was said and done.
Out of print designs.
You get the gist.
I asked Heather
if she would
to please send me any out of print
or never released fabrics
in the pink/orange/yellow family.
I'd say she was spot on.
for those of who who aren't as nerdy as I
is a stack of Mendocino fabrics.
And a gorgeous pink polka dot swatch
that looks rather similar to some Flea Market Fancy
(according to Rebecca, and she would know.)
On top of all this gorgeous fabric,
Heather was ever so kind
and sent me
an autographed sketch.

Really love it.
I think it's phenomenal.


there's a "but."

I think the inclusion of the sketch
significantly reduced the amount of fabric I received.
And, while elated by my loot,
I am
a little bummed.

I can't help it.
I feel guilty about it.

I feel like
I'm a total
and complete

But, at the end of the day,
I really just wanted fabric.

dear readers,
what do I do.

Should I email Heather?
Should I leave it alone?

What would YOU do?


(PS: I kinda sorta mostly already emailed Heather.
I thanked her, gratuitously for what she sent. And asked if the print decreased the amount of fabric that was sent. But still, I'm desperate for your input.  Am I a horrible, rotten, ungrateful little wench? Or, am I not? Or maybe just a little? Help.)


Sunday Knits

Here's a preview of the item I'll be giving away
as soon as it's finished
that is.


What I Know For Sure

I've been thinking a lot, lately.
A dangerous pastime.

I know.

And this is what I know for sure.

I am selfish.
And I'm okay with that.
I want time for myself.

I want to maintain an identity outside of my children,
my job,
my marriage to DRL,

I want to always have friends
all over the place.
From all walks of life.
Friends who I've known for 2.7 seconds
others since I was 9.
Friends I only ever 'see' on facebook,
and others that I would be lost without.
Those who,
as luc would say,
make up my tribe.

I need to lose 10 pounds.
And not just for vanity.
I don't feel healthy.
I'm 20 pounds over the "ideal" weight for my height.
I'll compromise,
stupid BMI chart,
and lose ten.

As soon as the two pints of Haagen Daz
White Chocolate Truffle
are finished.


The Texas Rangers are going to the world series.
Take THAT Yankees.

Speaking of Yankees,
I got called one today.
Not the baseballer,
rather, a person from north of the mason-dixon line.
"Oh, that's right....you're a yankee."

I've been listening to Austin News Radio.
It's very conservative.
Rush Limbaugh's radio show airs on this station.
It makes me mad, a lot.
But I keep listening.

I'm really homesick.
To the point that if it were a real disease,
I'd be hospitalized.
In critical condition.

If you're reading this,
I miss you.
True story.
Way more than a little.

I am drinking a juicebox.

I ordered $18/yard fabric.
I'm splitting half of it with Rebecca.
And I


I need to use my camera more often.

I need to realize that I can be a professional photographer.
I just need to own it.
Develop my skills.
Hone them.
And then brand myself.
And market the shit out of that brand.

I am going to be hosting my first ever giveaway

So keep reading.

On that note,
Thank you for reading.
It makes me happy.
Even if you don't comment
at the end of each post
hearing in random conversation that you come here
and read this
and love it

Every single one of them.

And for that
for you
I am forever grateful.



Dear Rebecca:

Yesterday we talked about expensive fabric.
Fabric that we just couldn't justify purchasing.

you suggested that maybe we buy a yard
and split it.
Since both of us want more
than just a fat quarter
but neither of us want to pay
for a whole yard.

I jumped with glee.
What a great idea!

"What are your favorites?" you asked.

Dear dear friend,
is my answer.

Little Spools Sunset 2

Clothespin People Sunset 2

Newspaper Boats Sunset 2

Gods Eyes Sunset

Clothespin People Sunset

Macaroni Sunset

Newspaper Boats Sunset M

If you'd like it narrowed down a little:
I can live without the macaroni necklaces
and the little boats.

Unless, dear Luc,
you'd like to halve those with me?
Or whichever ones Rebecca may not want...
if there are any...




This is Abby 
(and her husband, Tiff).
She is DRL's god-mother
for all intents
and purposes.

Elena calls her "Gramma Abby."
Stella will too.
As soon as she can talk, anyway.

This summer,
Tiff and Abby had planned a trip to visit us.
Then we found out they wouldn't be coming until Fall.
At least.
you see,
had been diagnosed with breast cancer.

But before I had time to be scared
DRL and I received an email
from Tiff.

She was going to have a double mastectomy.
Maybe some chemo or radiation.
The prognosis was amazing.

And as Abby thought about it
more and more
a funny idea popped into her head,
"why let cancer ruin my summer?
I didn't get to choose to this disease
but I can choose how I fight it."

So she talked to her doctors,
and the decision was made.

A double mastectomy.
No reconstruction.
No Chemo.
No Radiation.

The surgery was a success.
Almost as soon as she was diagnosed
she was

Cancer Free.

but cancer free.

Susan G. Komen may not have been able to save
Abby's Ta-Ta's
but with early detection
modern medical technology
and a patient with a finger 
ok, well, a fist, really
on the pulse of her own care
her cancer was a blip on the radar screen of her life.

And okay,
maybe I lied a little.
I did cry. 
But only for a moment,
when I first heard the news.

And then I talked to Abby
I heard her voice.
There was never 

Not even a trace of it.

For one ounce of her bravery
I would pay a king's ransom.

We love you.
As your granddaughter would say,
Forever and ever.
And still a day more.

We're glad it was a blip.
We're happy you're here.

And we're glad you got to visit us in Austin.
We had an amazing time.



Calico Critters

Elena's friend
has a Calico Critters dollhouse.

Elena has coveted it.
Talked about it.
Dreamt about having one of her own.

We told her, once, that she had to wait until her birthday.
And she remembered our promise.

It was all she asked for.
And so,
it was what we got her.

The Beagle family
(courtesy of Auntie Janelle et al)
hangs out downstairs,
in the master bedroom.

Mama and Daddy take the bed.
Little brother studies at the desk
and big sister does her makeup at the mirror.

The Mouse family
(also courtesy of afore mentioned auntie)
stays upstairs.
The kids share a set of bunk beds,
and it is their bedtime.
Mama and Daddy Mouse put the kids to sleep.
And silently creep out the french doors
to the patio.
 Where they take in peaceful evening.
The house is equipped with a master bath.
Complete with old fashioned soaking tub.
 And a dress shop,
(and dress maker)

A privacy curtain for changing helps
when two families are sharing a home.

Since there is no crib,
the baby sleeps in the bathtub.
Without water,
because that is the only safe way to sleep
in a bathtub
when you're a baby.
 There are working chandeliers.
 And a stylish
front door.
 But sometimes,
even with all these amenities,
the house gets crowded
and everyone
sleep outside.

 And just in case
you're worried about plumbing
in the Calico Critters Townhome,
There are
in fact
pipes in the bathroom.



A Birthday: In Pictures.

of course
there was cake.

That was eaten before a photo could be taken.




This is the third time I've blogged about Elena's birthday.
As it is the eve of the eve of her third.
I polled facespace the other day.
Asked my friends what I should blog about.
One suggested I write about what
from my childhood
I bring to parenthood.

I thought this was fitting
given that my eldest
the apple of my eye
the child that is a wee version of me
is turning three.

Not two.
Not one.
Not zero.

She used to be zero.
Just today, in fact, she asked us to tell her about the time
she was in Daddy's tummy.

We explained it was
in fact
Mommy's tummy in which she took up residence.
Then she told us that she was ready to come out
she "got born."

Yes, Elena.
Something like that.

Back to the topic at hand...

I learned a lot from my mother.
I think I bring so very much of it into my parenting.
Some of it,
directly from the way she parented my brother and I.
Other pieces I've learned from her mistakes.
As I will make my own
that Elena
(and Stella)
will learn from.

Since I am indecisive
and impatient
and cannot pick
I will present the big ones.

*Unconditional Love.
*The ability to be impatiently patient.
*The importance of "me time."
*The importance of making "kidlet time" a bigger number than "me time."
*How to give the perfect back tickle.
*How to  build a fort with a blanket - using my legs as the support 'beams.'
*Cuddles that end in more cuddles that end in huggles.

I hope you weren't looking for an answer that involved deep thought
or meaning.
Or some story about growing up poor.  Really poor.
About growing up without much, in the way of a father, for 12 years.
Until my mom married my dad.
I could tell you a story about how divorce, even at the age of 19
can still turn your world
upside down.
Or about growing up in a small town with a lot of corn fields, tractors, and judgement.

I could tell you those stories, too, I suppose.
Those are all things that make me who I am.

But tonight
on the eve of the day before my eldest daughter's birth
I'd rather think about butterfly kisses.
The way she annoys me more than any other living creature can
being the most beautiful being I've ever seen.

Second only to her sister.
(But really, it's a straight tie.)

And since I'm a blogger,
and it's what bloggers do,
it wouldn't be right if I didn't drop a snippet in here
about just
how very

I love her.

I do, Elena.
So much.
But how much is so?
Way, way more than you know.

Happy (early) Birthday, kid.
I think you're greater than great.


(PS: By popular demand, I included a photo of Elena in (almost) her entire owl costume.  She was attempting to hide from my camera.  Sucker.)


Sunday Photography

Camera: Nikon D90
Focal Length: 50mm
Aperture: 1.4
Texture applied using Photoshop CS3
Unsharp Mask.
Sunshine Action by Pioneer Woman Action Sets.

Owl mask courtesy of
my creative juices.



Lance Throttle

Remember this post
When telling you about my celebrity sighting 
of one Jad Jergens
while in Mexico,
I mentioned his new partner, Lance Throttle.

Jad may be the money behind Throttle Tan,
but Lance?
He's the brains.
And the braun.
And 100% sex appeal.
Even as a teen,
Lance was ahead of the fashion curve.
That mullet was featured in many fashion magazines.
Before girls went to salons and asked for "The Rachel,"
young men were lining up
for blocks
to wait for their turn in the barber chair.
To get "Lanced."

But, as it often does,
the fame proved too much.
Lance began partying.

He got piercings.
He wore guy-liner.
And he traded his mullet for something
a little more
One fateful night,
in the throes of Silver Bullet Bulimia,
he met none other
than the infamous

They became instant friends.
Jad loved guy-liner, too.
And tanning.
And throwing peace signs to shutterbug partygoers.

 Jad yearned to be half as badass
as Lance was.
On a bad day
while having Sunday brunch
with his grandmother.

So Lance showed him the ropes.
How to look tough in a photo.
Yet maintain a mysterious vulnerability
that was guaranteed to drive the ladies

Or, as Lance would say, "Wylde."

Jad and Lance were inseparable.
Jad had money to burn,
and Lance,
saw endless opportunities.

They had many business ideas,
the pair of them,
but it wasn't until one warm summer day
after Lance returned from a strenuous afternoon
of sidewalk climbing
that they finally came up with the idea for Throttle Tan.

And the rest, 
as they say,
is history.

If you are, or are going to be, in the San Diego area, 
you can schedule your appointment 
to "Get Throttled" here.

If you're on facebook, 
you can become a fan of Throttle Tan here.
And you should.

As my {now} friends 
Jad and Lance 
would say,

"Get naked.
Get Tan.
Get Throttled."