Archive for August, 2009

Ducks in a row.

Hi gang,

I’ve been working hard at getting things in order around here, which includes getting this blog a new lift (via my ultra talented friend April). It’ll be getting tweaks here and there for a bit, so thanks for your patience while things are under construction! We’ve also been adding new people to the studio and getting business up and running for Christmas. Can’t wait to introduce you to some wonderful friends! Life in the studio isn’t so lonely anymore…and my husband is so grateful not to be as involved (Wanna take a trip to the post office my dear?) Ok. So I don’t call him “My Dear”. He’d cringe. But not much more than hearing the word “post office” or “cellophane sleeves” for that matter! So we’re all a bit grateful to be getting lots of help. Can’t wait to introduce you. Until then…


sarah jane

  • Share:

My daughter’s tree.

I think that I shall never see
A poem lovely as a tree.
A tree whose hungry mouth is prest
Against the earth’s sweet flowing breast;
A tree that looks at God all day,
And lifts her leafy arms to pray;
A tree that may in summer wear
A nest of robins in her hair;
Upon whose bosom snow has lain;
Who intimately lives with rain.
Poems are made by fools like me,
But only God can make a tree.
~Alfred Joyce Kilmer

  • Share:

Dear Big People,

My mom thinks I’m snoozing in the cradle, but I had to sneak on and see what this big screen was all about. I can’t seem to figure out why people spend so much time on this big hunk of aluminum. I mean come on! I’m a heck of a lot cuter. But I think I am looking at an imac right now. Ok, Ok. They are pretty cool.

I had to log in and tell you I figured out the secret to making mom smile at me more and even take pictures of me again. I stopped screaming all the time. And even more effective, I started cooing. People seem a lot happier around here.

A lot.

Mom is still oober-picky when it comes to eating her food, but it makes me happy so who cares! All I eat is milk, why should she complain that she can’t have nuts, bread or ice cream any more? Yuck. It’s all about me around here anyways. Haven’t they figured that out by now?

There have been a few bumps to this whole “baby” thing, but I get lots of attention (and I mean lots!) so things are fine. And now that I’m talking, we’ve been having some pretty interesting conversations. But don’t worry, I won’t tell her I snuck out of my room to get on the internet. My vocabulary is limited to “glglglglurglglgleurooo” and “ahhhhiiiii” right now. She’d never catch on.

I’m sure I’ll be back.



  • Share:

Sew, Mama!

The other week I received a request to design some September appropriate embroidery designs for the blog Sew, Mama, Sew. I couldn’t have been more excited! I have wanted to offer some free embroidery designs here on the blog, and I never really got around to it. Hand sewing is so therapeutic, and I rarely do it for the amount of “other things” there is to do around the house.

But I decided this week to try out one of my patterns, and even get the kids involved. Oh, it was so wonderful! My hyper-active-super-hero-or-bust 3 year old even spent a good half hour going in and out with his very own blunt darning needle! I think it was the most focused he’s been in days:)

Remember this post? Thankfully my kids have always loved to sew, and I loved every second of it, too. I am determined to hand sew more often. It’s good for the soul.

These two embroidery patterns are available at Sew, Mama Sew! blog in two different sizes. I intend to sew some on my kid’s new school bags (which have still yet to be made, if they ever do get made!). So enjoy! My blog is in the process of getting a facelift, and I’ll soon have more free downloads here to choose from. But for now, enjoy Sew, Mama, Sew!

Oh and I must take this chance to shout out to the vast, infinite cyber space why I am in the best mood this morning: my 2 month old, colicky, allergy-ridden, fussy baby slept through the night last night. For 10 hours. These are the choice events that make a Mama very very happy! Ella, mind trying that again?

  • Share:

Parent’s Magazine.

September’s issue of Parent’s magazine is chalk full of amazing articles. One of which features Gabrielle Blair’s (Design Mom) take on designing a room to grow in. The rooms feature my “Three Bears Revisited” print, and it looks wonderful in the collage of art and photos she created. I’m getting some pretty wonderful ideas for decorating…I have the print…now I just have to get the furniture to match! A higher price tag for sure.

Fun Fact: if you look close enough, the rocking chair featured in this room is the same chair illustrated in my print!

Oh, and PS: Thanks for all the book love! Life is rather full these days!

  • Share:

Christmas in August.

Sample illustration for Christmas Goodnight, illustrated by Yours Truly.

I have waited two years to write this post. Well, maybe my lifetime!

So the story goes like this:

At a very young age (the ripe age of 4 I believe) I knew I was going to be an artist.

When I was old enough to write, I started writing books, poetry, anything I could wrap my ideas around.

I made hand-made books by the dozens. Flip books, chapter books, you name it.

I continued to study art through high school, privately and academically and loved every second.

And when I was 13 years old, I was told by a very wise man that if you write down your goals, they will happen.

So that is what I did: I made a list (75 items long) of all the things I wanted to do in my lifetime. Wanna peek in my journal? Come on, you know you do…

I had to blow the dust off this one…it had been years since I revealed to myself all my pre-teen ambitions!

Don’t you love the bubbly 13 year old handwriting?

Illustrating children’s books was only second to #1: Getting Married. Golly, I was serious!

It all started with writing it down.

But after going to college and graduating with a BFA in Musical Theater, teaching voice lessons at BYU, and then dabbling in performing, the babies started coming. And I wanted to get back into my art again.

But how? I kinda missed out on the whole art school thing. Oops!

So I started a blog.

And I was encouraged by my readers and my dear husband to open an ETSY shop.

Um…I love you ETSY.

And from having a shop, I started making contacts.

The first being Molly O’Neill at Harper Collins who stumbled upon my ETSY shop one month into my business and asked if I’d ever be interested in illustrating children’s books.

That was a 1 1/2 years ago. And after a lot of study, and hard work (with a lot of bumps along the way) I have landed a contract to illustrate my first picture book!

Christmas Goodnight, written by Laura Godwin and published by Katherine Tegan books, an imprint of Harper Collins to be released Fall 2011.

This might not come as a surprise to you. I have mentioned illustrating has been my ultimate goal for a while. But it isn’t an easy road, and there are a lot of hoops to jump through. So much more challenging than I had imagined at 13, but I couldn’t be more thrilled about it!

Molly O’Neill, the assistant editor I have been corresponding with over a year now, is brilliant and amazing and I can’t thank her enough for the hard work and chance she has put into me. It’s a dream come true!

The text is perfect….a poem in fact…similar to the feel of Goodnight, Moon but with the Christmas story. A classic for sure. I feel so honored to illustrate it!

It will take the next 9 months to work on this, but no worries….it won’t interfere with the shop at all! But what it will change is the amount of Christmas music being played in the house…we might just be starting Christmas in September just to get in the mood:)

The hardest work is ahead of me now, but I can’t think of a better challenge. I know it will be so much fun though. It’s been a life long dream. The 13 year old me is nodding right now and saying, “I knew you could. I just knew you could do it!”

For those of you who have been with me since the beginning, I can’t thank you enough for your listening ears, and your support. For a young mom who doesn’t get out much any more due to 3 beautiful and crazy side kicks, it’s meant the world to me to have a springboard here where I’ve made a lot of friendships and learned so much from you. Who would have ever thought that behind a screen I could gain such genuine acquaintances? Gosh, I love you guys!

  • Share:

Live it up.

Hi folks. It’s been a while. And for a good reason. We lost our dear friend and cousin Justin (age 27) very unexpectedly over a week ago. We had a very full week of emotions and funeral planning. Times like this, family all rallies together and it is beautiful to see what comes of such tragedies. Life can smack you in the face pretty hard sometimes. But there was a lot of peace and a lot of love and even understanding. I was so lucky to have all my family come into town which resulted in some updated family pictures of us all from my dear photographer friend Katherine. Family is the center of it all. My life, my treasure. Every day is a gift that we don’t get back. Love, laughter, smiles, thank you’s, and hugs make life worth living. Add a bit of good food, art, books, music, travel, color and days full of making things, and I’m a happy girl. Live it up folks. It’s all we’ve got.

(I’ll be back soon with more art and designs to share! See you around.)

  • Share: