Meet Hazel.

We just spent a lovely couple of days in the mountains of Idaho with all of Ryan's extended family. There were over 200 of us there and it was amazing. I love that my children are growing up knowing and loving their great aunts and uncles, 2nd cousins and more. I know that they are becoming better people by learning from the lives of these loved ones. 

Every Mathews family reunion includes an auction. Family members spend time creating unique handmade items to sell. There are quilts, paintings, handmade boom boxes (incredible!), home decor items, jams, and and so many more wonderful things. All of the proceeds from the auction go into the family fund that pays for the costs associated with the reunion. This year Abby was very eager to make something to sell in the silent auction. She worked hard designing a pattern, learning how to turn a skein of yarn into doll hair, choosing fabrics and perfecting her stuffing technique. Hazel is the fruit of her labors and I'm so proud of her determination. Isn't she the sweetest little doll?! I love the details and am so proud of Abby for sticking to it. Making things is fun but it's also a process of trial and error. I have a feeling Hazel is just the first of many dolls in Abby's future. 

Mother's Day Cards.

Just a couple of weeks after delivering Penelope I got a text from my friend Miranda of Hairpin Letterpress. Miranda was getting ready to design some Mother's Day cards and by the end of our conversation we decided a collaboration was in order. I've always wanted a set of simple cards I could send to the mothers I know that inspire me, support me, and uplift me through my own mothering journey for Mother's Day. Don't we all have women like that in our lives? I hope so. I have learned so much about being a mother from my own mother but I've also learned plenty by watching the women around me. Shouldn't they get a little Mother's Day card love too? That's what Miranda and I had in mind when we collaborated on this project.

You can order a box set of these pretty letterpress cards to send to any mom, regardless if she is your mom. They are printed on the most beautiful, luxurious blush paper with black ink. Simple + classic.

The other design we collaborated on is this little hand lettered number. It is printed in GOLD INK that shimmers in the best way. Miranda made these cards really shine with a beautiful watercolor technique that is just lovely.

This was such a  fun project to work on. I really hope you love these cards as much as I do and perhaps pick up a few for the mothers in your life.

Settling Into Seven

Our little Penelope has been with us for 2 1/2 months already. It feels like she was just born yesterday and that she's always been here simultaneously. Isn't that the funny thing about adding new babies to the family? I worried for months how this new one would settle in and now that she's here it's hard to imagine our family without her. 

Not to sound braggy (because that's not my intention at all) but Penelope is a dream. She is a wonderful little nursling, has been sleeping all night for weeks and has the most pleasant disposition. I'm especially thankful for all of this because I've been working through the baby blues the last few weeks. I've never been as affected by the hormone/life changes after having a baby quite like this. Don't worry, I'm being careful to take care of myself. It's easy to feel isolated after having a baby (especially in the winter months) so for me, getting outside everyday has made a world of difference. I've also focused on doing at least one thing a day for the sake of pure enjoyment. Some days it's reading or baking. Other days I'll fiddle on the computer or take a nap. It also helps having a husband like mine. I'm not sure what I would do without the love, encouragement and support of Ryan. He's the very best. 

Have you ever gone through the baby blues? Or maybe you've had postpartum depression? If so, do you have any tips to share? I feel like I'm coming out of the fog but your words and suggestions could help another mother who may need it. 

Images of me and Penelope by Susan Gray Photography

Orange You A Cutie Valentines.

Valentine's day is right around the corner and since citrus season is still going strong I thought it would be fun to turn everyone's favorite easy to peel snack into a valentine. My kids LOVE cuties so I knew they would be on board for this idea too. 

The supplies for this project are so easy to find! Just gather cutie oranges, small clear plastic treat bags, green card stock, twine, a small hole punch and scissors. After you download the tag printable simply print the tags onto your green card stock and cut. Have your child add their name and then tie the tags onto the bags with your cutie already tucked inside. I trimmed the tops of my clear bags a bit so there wasn't a bunch of plastic left over at the top. I think it gives them a nicer look.

You can download the Orange You A Cutie Valentine tag printable here.

Download Tips: All of my free downloads are for personal use only. They are Adobe PDF's. If for some reason you have trouble downloading the file, it may be helpful to update your Adobe software. You can do that right here.

You can find more of my original Valentines ideas here:

Introducing Penelope Jane

It's already been three weeks since Penelope arrived. She was born in the early morning hours on January 12th after an easy labor and delivery weighing in at 7 pounds and 11 ounces. Life since then has been a blur but a happy blur at that. I am so very thankful she arrived healthy and know how lucky I am to mother her and her brothers and sisters.

My dear friend Kristin snapped these pictures before the sun set on her birth day. It's amazing how much she has already changed! I will treasure these images forever and ever.