Wednesday, April 15, 2020

Confetti from the Sky

Editor's Note: It feels a bit strange to be blogging in the midst of a pandemic, so bear with me.  I hope my blog posts can provide a little sense of normalcy when everything else feels so unpredictable and unfamiliar. Writing is therapeutic for me, and I hope my blog can be a bright spot or distraction for you in the midst of everything going on.   

For most of my childhood, I grew up near the wettest spot on earth, Kauai's Mt. Waialeale where it rains an average of 373 inches per year, with a record 683 inches in 1982. I don't remember it raining much when I was a kid, but I do remember lots of sunny days growing up in Hawaii. 

After graduating from college in 2007, I did a stint in Seattle from 2008-2013 where I enjoyed my fair share of rainy days. One myth about Seattle is that it's always raining. Actually, the volume of rain wasn't problematic for me. It was more so the general cloud cover that was looming most days. I had co-workers with SAD disorder who needed bright lights to make them feel better. I managed to get by without those things and honestly, I  was more worried about the constant drizzle making my already frizzy hair even worse. Ah, to be in my early twenties again...  

After getting married, my husband and I moved across the country to the Southeast where my new  hair problem was humidity, not rain. Although, I did love the occasional thunder storms and got used to listening to the rain in the evenings while falling asleep.

Fast forward a couple more years to 2016 and another cross country move, and we have (finally!) settled in sunny Southern California. We moved here in June and did not see a drop of rain for months. I remember we were driving home from Palm Springs on a Sunday in October and it started raining and it was like a dream. I had never seen the concrete dark from the rain and when we pulled into the driveway, we both just stared at each other. I took a video of the rain, I was like, wow, who am I and who knew I could talk about rain so much?! 





If you made it this far, you will know that the point of this post is not only about rain. It's also about art! When Photowall approached me about doing a collaboration, I knew it would take me hours browsing their site to pick out my favorite art piece (c/o Photowall) and that all seemed like too much work. Little did I know, I popped onto their site and within 5 minutes, I had already picked out the canvas art that I wanted. It was called "abstract clouds". I was drawn to it because it was so simple, but I liked the colors and felt like it would really fit well into our home. 

Our son was born in Southern California and has only seen rain a handful of times in his young life. His first time seeing rain was actually in Michigan when he was six months old last summer. I want him to learn to appreciate the sun and the only way to do that is to also appreciate the rain. I was looking up rain quotes for this post and found one where someone called it "confetti from the sky". That is what I am going to start calling it! 

Since living here, my relationship with the rain has changed so much. Now I get excited for it to rain! Our house didn't have gutters (1942, am I right?!) but we ended up getting a couple installed recently and the first time it rained, we watched from the window. I mean, what better things do we have to do during #covidquarantine!?

If you feel like browsing (there are a bunch of more pieces I want to order), check out Photowall. Some of my favorites are Such Beauty, Big Sur (wallpaper), and Hedgehog Cactus. I am also happy to share a 25% off discount code, just use "thevintagemodern2021" at checkout. 

Stay home (+safe), 

Monday, March 30, 2020

Wild ONE

It's my first post of 2020!

Well, what a year it's been so far.

So many crazy unexpected adjustments and we are just surviving over here, folks. I remind myself that I'm taking things "one day at a time" about 49 times a day. I started going to a new mom's group last fall and one of the things we shared was our "mom mantra". Mine was "I am enough" and whenever I feel like I'm not doing a good job as a mom or just in life in general, I remind myself of my mantra and it helps me feel better. Other favorites: "This too shall pass" and "Fake it 'til you make it". Another thing I've found especially helpful over the years is making gratitude lists. I find that really helps shift my perspective and reframe things when I start feeling overwhelmed, anxious or scared (or all of the above).

To focus on some happier news during this unprecedented and stressful time, I decided to share West's cake smash photos. Sunny Kim, who also took West's newborn photos took these pictures in late February when West was almost 13 months old. Now, he's going to be 14 months old in just a couple short weeks. Jake and I finally finished up his monthly recaps for his baby book and now I just need to order a few more monthly photos to include and it'll be pretty much done. I also put all of his monthly progress photos in a chatbook and ordered a second chatbook with photos of our family that we can start reading to him on a regular basis. I am really excited about this family book especially since we won't be traveling for a bit.

I will work on a separate post about what he's doing these days now that he's ONE (if anyone is interested), I'm sure you're just watching him grow up on my daily instagram videos. Isn't technology crazy?

Ok, enough with the recap. Here are the photos you came to see.

WEST //
Cake Smash
February 2020 



We celebrated West's birthday in early February in Washington with friends and family and I struggled trying to find a photographer that would take photos at the actual party. So, friends and family stepped in and we got some really cute shots of West with his cousins and our friends that I shared on Instagram. I thought it would be fun to document his first birthday with a cake smash when we got home so that is exactly what we did. 


Suziecakes made this mini 4" smash cake and it tasted delicious. Fun fact: I actually saved the cake after the cake smash and Jake and I ate some for dessert that night. 





Maybe his hair will come in by his second birthday?!? :) I think that's what makes him look so young still. But I am not in a rush for him to grow up, so I'm okay with that... 




We had to help get him started a bit...




I love this one! The biggest bite he's ever taken of anything, I'm sure!


...and now he's double fisting!



Of course, Mom and Dad had to get in the mix a little!



I can hear his little voice when I look at his facial expression in this photo. Awww, can you tell he is sleeping now and I miss him? Classic mom move!


Happy Birthday my West!

Love,





aka
Mom
aka
Mama
aka
Mwham 

Sunday, October 27, 2019

Vintage Holiday Cards with Basic Invite

Since baby West was born over eight months ago, I have discovered that all the cliches about motherhood are true. I watch him sleep. I love him so much it hurts. Time goes by too fast. You get the idea. I am not someone who likes to conform to what everyone else does and says, so this was hard for me to accept. I like to be a little bit different. This is why I held out so long to get an iPhone; I liked being different with my Blackberry. For my wedding, I had my nails painted in Essie "chinchilly" which is described as greige (gray + beige). Sidenote: I'm still obsessed with this nail color! I would argue that we traveled to Iceland (in 2014) before it was the "cool thing to do". But I digress...

Now, one of my favorite things we've done since welcoming the baby has been taking family photos (I know, I know... total cliche! But I am embracing it now!). In my last post, I shared that we took newborn photos when West was just five weeks old. Coming from someone who has over 1,000 photos on her phone of her less-than-one-year-old baby, my rule is that you can never have too many photos (especially professional ones!). Fast forward to last month, we took some special Fall family photos with Lyndsey Yeomans that I knew would be perfect for our Holiday Card.



















Since this is our first year sending out Holiday Cards, I was so excited when Basic Invite reached out and asked if I wanted to work with them. Let me tell you about a few ways that Basic Invite is different. 


Nearly Unlimited Colors - They allow almost unlimited color options with instant previews online. Once you select a design you can change the color of each element on the card to over 180 different color options so you can make sure the card is exactly how you want it down to the littlest detail.

Custom Samples (my favorite offering!) - They allow you the ability to order a printed sample of your actual holiday card so you can see exactly how it will print as well as feel the paper quality before you ever have to place your final order.

Address Capturing Service - They offer an address capturing service that allows you to simply share a link on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, or any other social media to request friends and family’s addresses which will be stored in your account and can then be selected during the design process. They also offer recipient address printing at no cost on all Christmas card orders (which is a huge perk and time saver)! 

I always thought it would be too overwhelming, time consuming and too expensive to order holiday cards. But, I was wrong! Basic Invite makes it so easy.

First, I filtered, sorted and browsed the holiday cards. I created an account and added my top designs to my FAVORITES. Then I looked at my FAVORITES section and compared all the ones I "favorited". I decided I would order customized samples of my top five. I customized those designs with photos from our photography session.

Below are three of the samples that I ordered (images via online proofs):


Here is what they look like IRL (Photos taken with my iPhoneX, unedited):




So, which one did we end up choosing? It's a surprise and you'll have to wait and see what comes to your mailbox!

You may also want to check out Basic Invite for business holiday cards, vintage christmas cards or vintage inspired holiday looks. Until the end of November, you can get 30% off at Basic Invite with  coupon code "holi30". I can't wait to see what you end up ordering!

This is a sponsored post for Basic Invite. However, all opinions expressed are my own. #ad.

Monday, July 1, 2019

Newborn Life (Alternate Title: I'll Sleep When I'm Dead)

Now that we are starting to emerge from the new parent/newborn haze, I am finally able to start blogging again. West hasn't been napping as much during the day, so it's been hard to find time between breastfeeding + supplementing + pumping every 2-3 hours.  I have such a newfound respect for moms! How in the world do you find time to do anything for yourself? Let alone work full time! We both transitioned back to work in late April and I am still not quite sure how to juggle it all. In time.


We are both very lucky in that we are able to work from home. Jake does have to go to campus to teach classes a few times a week, but the rest of the time he is home with us -- unless he is golfing, that is. We have childcare so we can actually get work done -- now that would be insane if I tried to work full time and watch him. Basically, I would not get anything done. Ever. So again, we are lucky that West can be home and we don't have to ship him off to daycare just yet. 

When West was five weeks old, we had some newborn photos taken at our home and I wanted to share some of them with you all. We worked with Sunny Kim (@sykimphotography) and she was one of the sweetest, most calm people I've ever met. I was rushing around trying to see where the best lighting in the house was and she was like, it's OK... let me worry about that! I don't think Olive even barked at her one time! Olive is very protective of us so you know that is a BIG deal.

I thought about doing maternity photos but decided if I was going to choose between that and newborn photos, I would pick newborn -- and then the baby could actually be in the photos! We are deciding which ones we want to frame and its so hard because we LOVE THEM ALL. In honor of West turning 5 MONTHS old next week, here are the photos from when he was 5 WEEKS old.

Enjoy!

















And of course, Olive made a cameo. It was so cute, she was in a bunch of pictures and we didn't even realize it while we were taking them. I LOVE HER SO MUCH. She is the best doggie, and best big sister to West. <3


xoxo,


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