Thursday, June 23, 2016

Project 365 - Week 3

Day 15 - Currently reading The Pursuit of Love by Nancy Mitford. I read The Mitfords: Letters Between Six Sisters years ago when it came out, and I'd wanted to read one of Nancy's novels ever since. I finally picked this one up the last time I was at the library, and it's exactly as I thought it would be: clever, funny, and kind of dark. I definitely recommend it if you're looking for a summer read!

Day 16 - Packing up this fly mug to mail to my Dad for Father's Day (pun intended). He loved it! (It's part of the Hook Line & Sinker collection from Wild & Wolf if anyone's curious.)

Day 17 - Sat outside on the patio for a little while to enjoy the sunshine and noticed our lavender is looking quite pretty! We don't do anything to it, and it grows and grows. I think it's one of the easiest plants to maintain. (I know lavender is recommended for warm, dry climates with mild winters, but we live in a humid, wet climate much of the time and have had horrible winters with lots of snow the past few years, and the lavender remains unfazed.) The bees and butterflies love it too!

Day 18 - Spent much of the day in bed in the haze of feeling awful. (Thanks for all the well wishes, by the way! I think I'm finally getting better, slowly, but surely.)

Day 19 - Long shadows in the afternoon, listening to the kids next door play outside.

Day 20 - I'm in the process of a major wardrobe overhaul. I've taken bags and bags to Good Will, but I've held on to some pretty dresses and blouses because I thought I might do a sale. Has anyone bought or sold anything on Depop or Storenvy? Is it worth the trouble?

Day 21 - Going through my felt stash to see if I have enough to finish an order I'm working on. I looked down at this stack of scraps and noticed an abstract pattern forming, like layers of peeling paint.

Happy almost weekend, guys! We're finally supposed to get some good weather here, and I'm planning on getting outside and enjoying it! :)

Thursday, June 16, 2016

Project 365 - Week 2

Here's my second week!

Day 8 - Opened up a package filled with colorful washi tape, and it made my day. I should order more "office" supplies because they make me so happy and more excited to tackle my to-do list.

Day 9 - Making tacos.

Day 10 - Decided to take off this old painting and try to reuse the frame after I found a bunch of canvas rolled up in a closet. After removing all of the staples and getting everything ready, I remembered that we don't have a staple least I don't think so, but I could actually have five hidden in the shed. Anyway, more half-done projects! Yay!

Day 11 - We have honeysuckle growing all along our back fence, and I couldn't be happier about it. Honeysuckle is one of my favorite scents! I'm always looking for candles or perfumes that capture it, but I've never found one that truly did.

Day 12 - I'm all about trying new fruity drinks this summer, and this cute label caught my eye.

Day 13 - We spent what felt like the entire day driving to IKEA (and running a few other errands), and when we finally pulled into the driveway, I grabbed my camera and ran out to the backyard to capture the last light before the sky went dark. It's my favorite time of day to be outside, but I wish it wasn't mosquitoes' favorite time of day too.

Day 14 - A new print for the kitchen came in the mail! We're doing a little redecorating and sprucing up around here. We've decided not to repaint the pale green kitchen (a gift from the previous owners), so I decided to find artwork that would match it a bit better.

I'm still going strong with Project 365, but I'm not gonna lie, this past week has been tough (I'm a little over a week ahead from what I've posted). I've been really sick and like, "What can I take a picture of that isn't in bed (where I've pretty much been living) and without having to move?" I did putter around the house a bit and take photos of things other than the duvet or my feet so I feel pretty proud of that lol. I'm kind of wondering if I should skip a few days and pick it back up when I feel better and can actually leave the house, but for now, I'm sticking to it.

And on a related note, this current plague is also why I haven't started my 100 Day Project of illustrated notebooks yet. I've been struggling just to finish up orders and complete commissioned work, so I need a few more days to catch up before starting that one.

Hope everyone is having a great week! xoxo

Wednesday, June 8, 2016

Project 365 - Week 1

Project 365 is going pretty well so far. I'm actually two weeks in already. I still sometimes forget to take a photo till late in the day, but I haven't missed a day yet, so that's good! Here's week one:

Day 1 - Making my to-do list in the morning. One of these days I will actually cross everything off.

Day 2 - Peter and I went for a walk in the garden after he got home from work. We stopped every now and then to investigate all the new things blooming. These pink peonies were my favorite.

Day 3 - Made an eggy pie for dinner with sliced avocado and sourdough bread.

Day 4 - The end of a very long week. Peter and I curled up to watch Netflix, and I burned this candle called Windmills and Tulips, a very sweet, spring-like scent.

Day 5 - We walked under a canopy of blooms and twinkly lights unexpectedly on the way down to the river. We got ice cream, met some sweet puppies, then headed back home to watch a movie.

Day 6 - Went to an antique store looking for a few things. Came away empty-handed, but I loved this vintage espresso set.

Day 7 - Picked up some new plants at the garden center. Pardon the mess of random things in the window. I'm doing some rearranging in this room and there's stuff everywhere.

Hope everyone is having a great week! xoxo

Monday, June 6, 2016

New Projects!

Remember when I said I was back to blogging? Hahahahaha. No really, though, I am back! I might not post as frequently as I used to, but I miss it so, so much. I love to look back at old posts, even the ones that are slightly embarrassing, and remember what we were doing, where we were living, and all the little odds and ends that make up daily life. It makes me sad to think I've missed half of the year already.

With that in mind, I've been thinking of ways to motivate myself to get my camera out more often and post here as well. Two challenges came to mind that I see on Instagram all the time: the 100 Day Project and Project 365. Is it crazy that I think I want to do both of them at the same time?

100 Day Project - I struggled to think of something I could make and complete daily for 100 days, and also something that I wouldn't get sick of quickly. I used to be the type of person who would keep reading a book I didn't like until the end, or stick with a job I hated, or whatever. But I have a whole different attitude about that now that I'm older and have realized my time is too precious to waste on things I don't enjoy, that don't add value to my life or to the lives of others. So I really thought long and hard about what would be worth the time commitment. And suddenly the answer was so obvious! I'm going to make a hand-drawn or hand-painted pocket notebook every day and list it for sale each day as well. That's a manageable amount of work to add to my load at the moment, and I love the idea of having something tangible to offer people. I also plan on taking requests for what to draw at different points in the project so that people can participate too!

Project 365 - I've actually already been doing this one for a little over a week; I'll share my first week's photos soon! I plan on taking at least one photo a day for an entire year. I probably won't skip days even if we move or travel, etc. I'm a little undecided as to whether to post every single photo here though. I'm currently working on a few things that aren't ready to share, and most of my family and friends don't want their photos public. It will be a challenge to find something unique to document each day, but I'm excited about that! I'm hoping it will inspire me to take a few minutes out of each day, notice my surroundings, be present, and find something interesting to "say" with my camera. I guess I'll just see how it goes...if people enjoy my photos, then I'll keep posting them each week.

I'm giving myself a little leeway with both projects in that it might not be 100 or 365 consecutive days. If I miss a few days here and there, it's not a big deal as long as I make them up. I think I will probably post the notebooks daily on Instagram with the hashtag #100pocketnotebooks and do weekly posts about the project here. I'm hoping to start posting them in a day or two (I've got a big order to finish up first).

I just want to say I've missed all of you who've been reading here over the years. I've had emails from a few folks wondering where I've been for the last few months, and I just want to say thank you so much! I'm happy to be back. :)


Thursday, March 17, 2016


After two and a half months of not blogging, I've almost forgotten how! A couple of people asked me recently if I was ever coming back, and I'm happy to say the answer is yes! I never intended to take such a long break, but once you get out of the habit of taking photos and blogging regularly, it can be difficult to start back up again. But I've missed posting here--Instagram is really just not the same, for me, anyway. I will always love reading blogs (and blogging) more. I do still post to IG regularly, and I loooove looking at other people's photos, but I don't really like reading (or typing) on my phone, so that platform will always have it's limitations for me. (I still love snapchat too, by the way; it's a whole 'nother animal, but it's sooooo fun!)

Anyway, on to some SOOC photos. I found a couple of rolls of film from last summer (I think?) in a drawer in my studio, and I just got the first roll back last week. All of this lush greenery climbing up the sides of old buildings makes me ache for summer sooooo bad. We had our first taste of warm weather this past week, and it's been heaven! I heard talk of more cold weather and snow coming for Sunday, but I'm not even letting that get me down because I know warmer days are coming, and everything will be green and gold again. :)

P.S. Hope everyone is having an excellent St. Patrick's Day and doing something fun tonight...if you're into fun, that is. I'm pretty anti-fun, so I'll most likely be staying home lol. :)

Thursday, December 31, 2015

Our Tree

Hi guys! How are you? It's been a while. The holiday season was a busy one for
My Hideaway, which kept me cutting and stitching, packing and shipping right up to Christmas. I loved every second of it. Thanks so much to everyone who supported my little shop!

I've since been feeling a bit under the weather, as tends to happen this time of year after the holiday rush. Needless to say, our New Year's Eve celebration will be a quiet one at home, probably with hot tea and soup instead of bubbly, but that's OK.

I wanted to share a few pics of our "big" tree this year. Because I decorated the mantel with gold and white accents, I decided to keep the same color scheme for the tree. We didn't pack on too many ornaments either because Peter and I wanted to let the natural beauty of the branches shine through.

If you're wondering where the colorful felt and handmade ornaments are, rest assured, we had two trees! I have a smaller white tinsel tree that I stuffed full of cheerful little felt ornaments and funny trinkets that people have given us over the years, and that sat on the hall table to greet everyone who came through the door...definitely a crowd-pleaser. :)

I'm normally a "more is more" type of person when it comes to Christmas decorations. Bring on the bright colors and festive garlands and all the sparkle, but I really loved our gold and white minimal decorations this year. It felt calm and peaceful, while still being cozy and cute. It's given me a lot of ideas for things I want to try next year!

Speaking of next year, I'm working on making my list of goals and resolutions, both for my business and my personal life. I'm thinking there are going to be some big changes in 2016. What about you? Making any resolutions?

Happy New Year's Eve! Hope you have a good one! xo, Mary

Monday, December 14, 2015

Holiday Decorating - On the Mantel

gold and white holiday decorations
I decided to keep our holiday decor simple this year: white and gold accents surrounded by fresh greenery. I'm not usually one for minimalism at Christmastime, but I have to say I love how calm and peaceful it looks. I did have plans to DIY a white wreath out of felt, but I've been too busy to indulge in just-for-fun crafting, and I didn't want to wait until Christmas Eve to put up our decorations. So I bought this paper wreath kit from Paper Source as an alternative. It's so pretty!! I don't know if you can tell from these photos, but half the leaves are made from paper with a shimmer finish, and half from paper with a matte finish. It has just the right amount of shimmer to catch the light, particularly when the candles are lit, without being too over-the-top and glittery.

Paper Source winter wreath kit
I'm not gonna lie though, it did take forever to put together. I probably would've been able to design and execute my own DIY in the time it took! But I honestly don't regret it at all; it looks beautiful above the mantel, and I think it fits in perfectly with the decorations we already had.

brass candle holders and porcelain candle holders on the mantel
holiday decorations on the mantel
We've been trying new holiday-scented candles lately too...maybe I'll share some that we've liked if anyone's interested in that sort of thing. I never really thought I'd be a candle person, but it just makes the whole room cozy and warm (especially now that the nights are drawing in), and lighting candles has become a daily habit.

Hope everyone has had a great start to the week! And to my fellow shop owners in the midst of the holiday rush, remember to take a break now and then and breathe. Don't worry, it will all get done. xo, Mary