Archive for November, 2011


A bit of news:  LUCKY magazine, the seasonal LUCKY KIDS insert to be exact, featured my blog in their best blog round up!

Wow. That was fun to see!

And what made me smile, is that the thumbnail image is my son’s head. He has a cute head. But he’s 5, and I don’t know if I’ll show him that his profile is shared with Jessica Simpson. Not just yet at least. Don’t want him to get any ideas, you know?

No, really…I’m really so flattered that they’d choose my blog as “The Best Blogs” in their Winter issue! Wow. Really. Wow. Thanks so much Lucky!

As part of the feature, I’ll be GUEST BLOGGING this week at LUCKY KIDS with a daily round up of handmade, creative, and great finds for the holidays. I used to blog more about my favorite things…but now thanks to twitter, pinterest, etc. I can post things like that there. So this was fun to put together! Come say hi!

And as promised, I can’t finish a post with out a sketch from my current sketchbook.

I’ve been thinking about cold bunnies lately. You?



  • Share:

Mood Boards

I like to put mood boards together. Inspiration boards. Story Boards. Whatever you call it, it’s really good for me to put my ideas in one place, and make little families.

My brain is always so full of information, it really helps to put bits and chunks in one place and see how they work together. Sometimes they are digital, sometimes they are on my wall in my studio…sometimes they are cut and paste, or printed out on paper. Pinterest is awesome for collecting ideas…you name form, and I have collected ideas there.

This one is for a top-secret mission and I can’t say anything about it.

Just kidding. I’m working on new fabric again (!) and this is a peek at just the ideas behind it. Too early to show anything just yet…but it’s rather fun to see how it all gets started. The conception of ideas usually starts with random bits of information in my head (information for me = sounds, colors, shapes, people, phrases, memories…) and plop them down on the table and then I start to see where and how they work together. I move the pieces around like it’s a puzzle, and eventually pieces shift, get thrown out, come to the front…and I have something to work with. The conception stage takes the longest for me. Like a really good, slow simmer!

But I’m liking it so far! I think the octopus is blushing…and it makes me smile to wonder at what! Cute little guy!


And PS: The Cyber Monday sale is still going on here and here! Read more here. Happy Holidays!!! Yipee!





  • Share:

Black Friday/ Cyber Monday Weekend sale!

I’m still full from yesterday, and happily lounging in my PJ’s with my family this morning, but had to stop in real quick and let you know (if you didn’t get the memo in my newletter) that this weekend we’re having an awesome sale!

The best part about this sale, is that when you make an order with the code thanks15 you’ll get a code for a 20% off coupon in January!
And if that wasn’t fun enough, all orders with the code thanks15 will be entered to win a $100 gift certificate to the shop that I’ll announce on Tuesday!


(On ETSY and the new shop!)

So, I know you are all doing shopping this weekend, but stop on in enjoy the sale!

Hope you all had a lovely weekend!

See you soon!


  • Share:

Just one more thing…

Ok. So I promised that I was going to include an illustration in every post. But my blog has been down, and my hands have been tied up in web-stuff.

But I had to share this one last image from our trip to HANA. The tide pools below the house are covered in black lava rock formations, and then broken up bits of coral from ages of wear. My parents and Kenneth and I spent an hour searching and wading through pools looking for the best letters to make the phrase. A task that simple seemed like play…spend an hour looking for the letter “E?” That’s when I started to realize that I really do have a lot going on in my life, and slowing down is a very theraputic, wonderful thing.

Right now, I’ve been in the middle of some more website battles..and so I’m really, really sorry if you’ve emailed me, visited the blog or site and gotten error pages, or broken links.  We’re still working on some issues! And they’ve made me go a little crazy…cause it’s like having a house with no drivway or address…but things are getting there, and if you had trouble this week so far…I’m so sorry. Today I’m shifting my mind back to that trip where I truly felt nothing else but being mindful of the present moment, and that is a good way to go into this Thanksgiving holiday.
But I’ll be back with some exciting BLACK FRIDAY sale notices, so you can be ready for shopping after Turkey day.

I hope you all have WONDERFUL thanksgiving plans! We do. We have family in town, and a new baby nephew who I can’t get enough of. I just love this holiday. So much.

God bless, and have a wonderful, wonderful Thanksgiving!!!

(But don’t forget to come back and find out about weekend sales…they’ll be all done by monday!!)

Love to you all,


  • Share:

Be Smart & enter a quick giveaway!

Quick Weekend update!

Soule Mama is hosting a HUGE giveaway from my shop today only, as well as offering a 15% code for all her readers.

If you hop on over today, you can enter to win:

1) 1 signed copy of A Christmas Goodnight

2) $100 Gift Card to the shop

3) a 15% OFF CODE for Sarah Jane Studios this week only!

Visit Soule Mama Blog here.

Have fun entering! (I LOVE her blog. I’m such a lover of all that she does!)

There is also a brief interview with me, and some interesting things about me and how things tick around here!

Thanks Amanda for this wonderful feature!

Happy Weekend!

(I’m off to play in the SNOW!!)



*”Be Smart” Print here.

  • Share:

Naptime and new blogging.

Confession: I don’t draw very much. Well, for how much I really should be pulling out pencil and paper as an illustrator, I just don’t.

I can think of a few good reasons:

3 busy children. Laundry. Cooking. School Lunches. Sleep. Studio deadlines. Email. Homework. Driving. Errands. Phone calls. Church service. Dishes. Playing with kids. Cleaning.

Well, all that said, I really wish I had more time to just draw what I was thinking. Cause that’s how I think. In pictures and words.

But at the same time, as an illustrator, I need to be working at it every day if I ever want to get where I want to be.

I’ve tried to think of a motivation for a long time…but I finally found a way give myself the motivation to sketch every day.

I really like blogging. It takes time. I’m fast at it now, but it still takes time. I’m not willing to give up blogging to make more time to create, so I’ve decided to do what my blog actually says: “Illustrate Childhood.”

I hereby commit to having an illustration in every single blog post from here on out!

There. I said it.

Ha ha. Just watch…I won’t blog as much now:)

No…this is just what I need.   I need be sketching every day, and I’m telling the universe so that I can’t slack off. And if anything…this place will get a lot more interesting:)

I’ll still have photos…but I’m always going to have some art.

Deal? Deal.

And speaking of the lack of time I have to illustrate, here’s what my darling sweet 2 1/2 year old looks like when she is supposed to be napping: She comes out of her room, tip-toes oh so daintily down the hallway, and freezes in this very pose as soon as she sees me.   And then she stands there..arms out, tongue out, avoiding my glance…completely frozen in place until I pick her up.

You know when you want to laugh so hard, but you can’t … so you turn your face away and hold it? But the tears are coming and your stomach hurts?

That happens to me about 1:30 p.m. every afternoon in the family room. Just me and her.

Right now, she’s winning. I mean, how can you get upset? It stinks to have cute kids.

  • Share:

Hana red.

Getting away to a gorgeous part of the earth was a  total rebirth for me…being around color was so energizing! Literally!

I mean, really….I had a love affair with color every.single. day.

Every where I turned there was color-color-color! Like laughter all around me! I could just drown in it.

You know, it’s interesting. I have color in my head all the time. But I haven’t really colored our home yet.  I don’t even have many indoor flowers and plants, and I’m feeling rather ashamed about it! I’ve decided to invest in flowers for garden, and totally investing in cut bouquets through the winter. I must have color!

Can you believe these shades of red?

No photoshop here!! Straight from my camera. Amazing.

Man. Hana bleeds color.

Must have more color around me! Official mission of 2012: Color bursts!

Ahhh….Feeling better already. I think I’ll go paint something red now.

  • Share:

Hana Part 1.

I’m back! Oh my goodness. Talk about a week of recharging and getting back to my roots. I don’t even know where to start!

Kenneth and I spent our honeymoon Kauai, my first time taking him to my favorite place on earth. He “got it” right away, and fell in love with the locals, the islands and the island culture after having spent time with my mother and her pigeon-english, her obsession with water and the color green. We’ve planned on coming back (without kids) all these years, and finally made it! My parents were planning a trip as well, and so we combined our stay.

So, everyone has their “home” place, right?  Home is wherever I am with my husband and children, but there are certain places that take me back to my real authentic self….free of all the hats that I tend to wear. The place where I can just “BE.”

Hawaii is that place for me.

But maybe not for the same reasons that people like to travel to Hawaii. The islands are that place for me, because that is where my mother, and her mother and her mother call home. Since the early 30’s my mother’s side of the family has history on that island. My Father as well, with 3 generations of his father’s serving their LDS missions there. There’s a story of my Great Grand Father helping princess Lelekulani from tipping in a canoe. There are lots of stories.

And lots of memories. My very first memories are of the color of the ocean looking down from my Great grandmother’s apartment. I stood up for the first time on the beach on Oahu and my first car-sick experience was at the age of 1 on the road to Hana. To this day, I still get carsick.

My first experiences and memories of color are from when I was 2 1/2 visiting my family. It’s a really special place.

Hana is a remote town 2 hours from anything or any major location on Maui. It’s one of the few places that locals have been able to keep “real Hawaii.” Probably because it’s only accessable by car, on a windy one lane road (well, 2 lane, but it’s really the size of one lane!) that only lets you go about 15 miles an hour because (and my mother and grandfather counted once) 397 switchbacks one way.

My Great Grandfather purchased a small plot of land there in the 30’s. And I’m so glad he did. Land filled with roaming cattle, horses, and chickens. Rain forest jungle and jetting black cliffs covered in green mossy grasses. Waterfalls by the hundreds. 57 bridges. Hikes you won’t find on any map. There is only one real beach, and it happens to be the most amazing beach I’ve ever been to on any of the islands. There are 2 tiny stores crammed with random imported goods, horrible cell reception and we didn’t even seem to notice that the internet would cut out several times a day. And finally, my favorite local people who always remind me how to truly live in the present. It was heaven.

I can’t even share all that we did and didn’t do on our trip…there is too much! But I do want to say how much I love this place.

We hiked every morning, and swam every afternoon. It felt so amazing to move my body this much. Working as I do, and with 3 kids, I don’t get out much any more. I’m usually sitting in the car, on the computer, at my art table or standing in the kitchen or laundry room. And I’ve been terrible about exercise these past 2 years. Ooooooooh it felt so good. Every morning I’d have a fresh papaya from the tree in the back yard, hike on mostly unmarked trails and explored the back jungles, have fresh fruit and veggies from the road side stands for lunch, and then go swim in the ocean for hours on end. It was such a wake up call to the busy crazy life we’ve been pulling.

So, I won’t bore you with all the details of the trip, but rather shower you with pictures and maybe you can have a moment of paradise just looking.

God really smiled when he made Hana. I think he must have been just giddy. I mean, just look!

And see how cute my parents are? I love that we got to explore and be little kids together….it was so perfect to be with them with out the kids, and actually have uninterrupted time together. Precious.

And the pictures don’t even do it justice. I almost cried when I looked at my camera on the last day. It just doesn’t touch the smells, the sounds and the feeling of this place. It’s honestly sacred ground!


And in Hana, it’s a colorful feast. Flowers growing everywhere. I think I’ll save an entire post on just color. So much color! I feel like I’ve been starved and this was just the feast I needed.

But really. I just unplugged. I’m kinda not ready to get back. And I don’t think I will all the way. Spending a week using all of my senses all day every day, without the buzz of what can be unecessary business and time wasters, I’m definitely my full self again and don’t plan on going back to any old habits that kept me from living in the now.

Which, of course is easier said than done. But this was a for sure jump in the right direction. Mahalo, Hana!

  • Share: