Saturday, March 14, 2015

Around here // March 2015

1// We have a newly ambulatory member of the family.  He was so proud of himself for walking.

We are too. 

This has been a big week for him.  He has been talking a lot and lifted his life long ban on the word Mama.  Yay! No one is more excited about that than I am.  And, I'm sure Dada appreciates the break.

He also got a four week reprieve from weight checks by the pediatrician for all his recent weight gain.  Go Lakshman go!

2// Getting ready for our little girl's Pi Day birthday.

This year is a big one because when "I turn four, I gonna be a baby again."

I wonder if she's trying to tell us something with this?  The psychology at work is quite the mystery.

3// Enjoying the emergence of the sun.  I am so ready for spring now.  I live in Texas now, I don't do winters anymore!  Bring on the flowers and days at the park. Our garden is pretty much planted, but I still love our regular trips to Natural Gardner in our neighborhood.

4// Looking at Anthro's new Indian-inspired line and trying to figure out why the marketing irritates me so much.  The fact that all, save one, of the Indian people are used as photo props, and not protrayed as equals doesn't help. I seem to be getting offended by everything these days.  Don't even get me started on the last episode of the Mindy Project.  Hindus are 'Godless" now?  Nice one Stephen Colbert.

5 // We already broke out the eggs after a recent trip to Target.  For $3 you can buy white craft eggs, to dye and decorate.  These are worth their weight in gold.  Not having to poke holes and wait for all the goop to drip out and then trying to puncture the yolk.  Or worse, hard boiling them and finding a nice pungent little surprise in the most random places around the house.  And, half of them break while dying anyway.

These are sturdy and not plastic.  We dyed them but the result wasn't fantastic.  We are going to paint them next.  I kind of want to make these galaxy eggs really badly.

6 // I feel like the everyone is descending on Austin this week for SXSW.  I am at least equal parts excited and scared.  The traffic is horrific and FOMO is palpable.  Hoping to find at least one fun free concert to take the kids to.

Sunday, March 8, 2015

Happy Holi | Holi Ke Din Dil Khil Jaate Hai

Growing up this was the type of Holi celebrations my dreams were made of.  I would pore over the pictures of my parents playing Holi together in India with utter amazement.

Growing up in the 80's in Pennsylvania we just didn't have regular access to Indian stores and I never remember seeing any stocked with Holi color.  It is always too cold there to have much fun anyway.  Playing Holi was the unattainable.  The long lost and left behind celebration I could only dream about.

This is what the Holi of my dreams looks like now.  Sitting down trying to open up more bags of colored powder while I get ambushed by these three.

And, it is way better than I ever imagined.

Fun to the core.

Joyful, a time to let go, get messy and run around wildly together.

 Does life get any better?

Of course I never get stressed the mess going all over? NOT A BIT. 

Ok, a bit.  

But, the car is easy to clean, we go straight in for showers and baths. I worry about the rugs, I do.  Though I make everybody put their clothes in the washing machine as soon as we get home.

I also wrapped my camera body up in bandages so the powder wouldn't get stuck deep inside the mechanism.  It seemed to help.
 Nandini loved it.  Chasing Avinash and running around with their newly made friends.  She was so excited about the new white dress we bought together the day before.  Right at the end she started to worry that her dress was "getting messy".  Really, where?  I don't see anything unusual. 

She totally didn't buy our, "It's getting more beautiful" line.  Smart girl.

Lakshman loves anything that involves chasing his kids around.  They were pretty good about keeping the powder off his head.  They would lovingly dab his legs and feet, just make my heart melt why don't you? Most of that on his face is from me.

Happy Holi everyone!

Monday, March 2, 2015

Lakshman, you are one!

Lakshman, you are one year old!  We can hardly believe how much you have changed and grown!

I think you were getting a cold on the actual day of your birthday.  We stayed home, other than your year one check up.  We played with your animals and I took lots of pictures in the playroom.  Definitely one of your spots in the house.  If you only knew how to climb down the stairs safely we would let you hang out there all the time .

You are the happiest, sweetest and most friendly baby I have ever seen.  Your capacity for joy is enormous.  Either when bouncing in his swing or playing ball with his kids, I have never seen joy and laughter like yours before. You have made friends with at least half the kids in Avinash's kindergarten class.  You play with them so much you have started to recognize them.  And you jump out of my arms when you do so you don't miss out.  You love to poke and prod your friends until they laugh right along with you.

You have a fuzzy head and love to snuggle.  You have only grown more bear like as you grow older much to our delight.

The year has not been with out it's ups and downs though.  You got the flu at the beginning of the year and our pediatrician started to really panic about your lack of weight gain there after.  You are teeny tiny and we are still playing catch up.  A few days after your one year check up the doctor was ready to put you in the hospital.  We managed to hold off on this because you gained a few ounces that week but weekly doctor and therapy visits have become the norm.  We have finally started making progress, but it is slow and steady at best.

Things have been stressful but you have it doesn't seem to have affected you in the slightest thankfully.  We have changed up your diet to include lots more fat and it is helping.

The day before your birthday you were definitely in better spirits than the actual day of.  We went to the botanical garden and soaked in the sunshine.  It was the day of the superbowl, just like the day you were born.

Last year we watched from the hospital right after you were born.  My eyes never even looked at the screen.  My family was there, helping me and helping with the kids.  The very first my mom said after you were born was "He is one lucky baby" thus naming you and anointing you. My best friend, who normally lives over a thousand miles away, miraculously showed up at the hospital too, just in time to meet him on his birthday.

One year later, the day was much less exhausting and thrilling but I am reminded of how we are the lucky ones and how much he has added to our lives.

We are so proud of you and love you so much! Happy Birthday (and one month) Lakshman bear!

Sunday, March 1, 2015

Harry Potter Story | LOTW

I am back again on the Studio Calico blog this week for my HP Story layout.  You can check out the feature over here.

It is so simple, but I really love this layout.  The big black letters from this past month's kit are so bold and graphic, I couldn't help but fall in love.  The picture may or may not have anything to do with Harry Potter really, but the baby really does love to wave his arms and cast spells with the big kids all the time.

I actually would like to do more pages about the books we read and listen to.  It is such a big part of our life but I so rarely have any images to go along with it.  Any ideas for scrapping about this would be much appreciated!

Friday, February 13, 2015

Studio Calico Spotlight | Nirupama

I am so honored this month to be spotlighted on the Studio Calico newsletter and blog.  You can hop over there to see my rambling answers to the interview questions, and more importantly, see some new projects I have been up to this month with their kits!

In the meantime, here are some other projects I did earlier on in the month that I haven't shared yet.

 I took the kids to this "teddy bear picnic" and I'm kind of obsessed with it.  Lakshman was dressed a bear of course and totally acted the part.  I'm just so happy I finally have a bear stamp to use now.

 I am taking Marcy Penner's grid class and this layout came about because of that, and all the scraps I had after making another grid page. I love the way the stitching turned out here.  Overall, it was pretty simple to make which is what I love about using grids. 

Another grid page.  These are so addictive to make.   I stitched the squars before gluing them down and sort of alternated adding pop dots underneath. 
This photo is Nandini in an Audrey Hepburn inspired bunny mask, so I had to use this quote from her.  I almost wrote down, "Hoppy girls are the prettiest" but I resisted the pun.  Maybe a card for Easter?

 If you want to see more, please follow my blog here and check me out on pinterest and instagram too. I am running a little sale on my Etsy shop, for washi tape samplers, custom die cuts and more. Just use the code WASHI20 for 20% off anything in my shop.  Thanks so much for stopping by!

Thursday, February 12, 2015

Cupid Arrow Valentine's Cards

I am so glad we finally finished Avinash's class Valentine's.  Of course, we had to make them instead of buy them.  My craft stash is just way too big not to.  Plus, Avinash loves doing projects together with a passion and it has been a while since I made time for us to do one together.  

Nandini helped too. She would stamp something on a tag, run to the couch, lay down for five seconds and come running back.  And repeat.  She made her best friend Katie a card over and over again and none for anyone else in her class. 

Avinash and I spent a long time brainstorming about what type of cards to make.  I made a few paper berry baskets.  We thought about paper airplanes and paper prize medallions but the ideas never really came together.  On a whim I grabbed a bunch of stirrer sticks from Starbucks on our last Target run.  

I just love the ideas of arrows (as you can see in Avinash's birthday party decorations this year) and realized I could easily tie it into Valentine's Day.

I have a ton of leftover feathers from a custom Etsy order I made a while back.  The kids love to play with them and these feathers somehow find their way all over the house.  So, basically I jump at any chance to use them up.

The making was pretty simple.  I used twine to tie the feathers on the craft sticks.  The heart stickers for the arrowheads are from a target pack.  Avinash and I cut up scrapbook paper into hearts and I stapled the arrows in place.  We made mostly red and pink ones, but he wanted some blues for the pink haters in his class too.

I am loving how these turned out!  We taped a little package of gummi bears to the back.  We did non-candy last year and I figure it's our turn to hand out the stickiness.  One of the mom's in class loves to ask me if I get my ideas from Pinterest.  I kind of want to tell her, "No, pinterest gets it's ideas from me."  Lol.  Honestly, there are a lot of mom things that I am behind on, but I embrace the stuff I have fun doing and just run with it.

Sunday, February 8, 2015

Valentine's Day Tags

We actually have a free day at home tomorrow.  No amazing Austin outdoor festival to check out.  No birthday parties.  I got all my Valentine's day papers and stamps and dies and spread them out on the floor of my craft room a few weeks ago.  I am really hoping to sit down with the kids tomorrow and make some cards together. They love doing projects together and so do I.  

I was looking around for inspiration and found these tags we made last year.  

Red + pink stamped tags.  I pasted a family photo on a folded piece of patterned paper, so that it stands up like a frame.  

We made more tags for his class Valentine's party, with bubble wands tied on. I was knew there would be a ton of candy there, so I went for the less sugary but still fun option I think.  Avinash helped me with the stamping and added his coloring as well.  

These are the cards we made.  I still love that little fox.  This year I am thinking prize medallions, paper airplanes or robots maybe?

Sunday, January 25, 2015

Yarn Hangings

When I was eight years old I had this awesome hand loom. It had alternating action and it's own shuttle. I made a few things on it but I could never get my stuff to look right. It was years later before I was Indian weavers at work and learned that you shouldn't pull the thread to tight across so the weavings will lay flat.

By then my little loom was gone and I never went back to it. I of course still knit and crochet. But when I kept seeing these awesome weaving projects popping up on my Instagram feed I knew I had to give it another go. 

There were so many things I never really thought about before. Mixing different textures. Changing yarn gauges mid project. Adding in a splash of glitter or fringe.

I love that these projects are a great use of leftover yarn scraps. This didn't stop me from getting a few new balls of yarn. Like these gold metallic laced white, rainbow colored, and some extra chunky pinks and whites.

I love how these triangles turned out. Plus, I love a good fringe. 

Playing around with abstract patterns is a lot of fun. I love the touch of warmth these add to a rooms decor.

I made quite a few. One for Nandini's room (as soon as I can commit to a hanging up a little hook somewhere).  I put a few in my Etsy shop. A fun and unique handmade treasure. Makes a lovely gift too. 

Friday, January 16, 2015

Happy New Year | 2015 Holidays Mini

  This New Year's Eve party was so laid back and so fabulous.  It was just me in the living room with my favorite people.  Watching some Nick music show airing on east coast time. Nandini asking us to turn up Taylor Swift so she could do her moves.  Eating popcorn and drinking sparkling apple cider.  Popping a whole box of confetti poppers with Avinash, much to his great delight.

I wanted to scrap about it, of course.  But I found the idea of a full page New Year's Eve spread a little hokey.  Still in mini-album mode after all that December Dailying, I decided I needed lots of little papers bundled together in random sizes.

This one event is hardly enough material for a full mini album, I'm using a really fun Studio Calico handbook with a printed cloth cover.  I love this book and have been saving it for something really special.

 So the idea for a 2015 Holidays Book came together.  I often want to scrap holidays quickly and right away after they happen.  Not full spreads, just few inserts and pictures.  Some pretty papers too and memoribilia.

I started with a half page insert, using the January SC kit paper with the months on it.

On the back of the insert I used another black and white kit paper and the large DIY white letter stickers.

The Happy Note Letterpress page I had in my stash for a long time, thinking I would use it for December Daily, but I never found a place for it.  It adds a nice pop amidst all the black and white I had going so far. I paired it here with some silver glittery thickers.  Very festive. I love that color combo.

I am linking up this project with the Paper Issues New Year's Issue.

 On the back I just clipped on a bit of silvery stars transparency and a month label.  I love the moons in this months kit and used one here, simply.  The chipboard is from the Firsts Story kit.

 I left a space for journaling on the back.  I used a few stamps to frame it out a bit.  Another swatch of silver stars at the bottom.

 This little guy woke up early in the New Year so he could celebrate with us too.  We dressed him up a bit (well, mostly undressed) and took his picture.  He wonderfully went right back to sleep after this.  Though he did end up getting diagnosed with the flu the next morning.  That's been fun.

I actually started with the stars transparency here, just a strip to fit the chipboard and went back to add it in to the other pieces later.  Love the way it ties in all the disparate pages together.

How was your New Years?



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