on when the internets fail you.

This last week I decided to work on a few walls around our apartment. We're adding a gallery-type wall, we balanced (or plan to) out a wall in our room and are possibly adding a few frames here and there. I did what I usually do in this type of situation: to the internets! And for the gallery wall, there is a lot of inspiration out there, and I found a wall I wanted to go off of fairly easy. The other wall was a little more challenging.

We used to have Sam's crib on one half and our dresser next to it. Sam's crib moved in the summer, so there wasn't usually anything there. So we had a dresser and our map hanging over it and it was really unbalanced and I kind of hated it. So I set out to figure something out. I found myself really stuck! Our dresser is one of the tall and skinny dressers and I felt like most inspirational pictures I found were of shorter/wider dressers. And the wall placement was different. Everything was different and I realized how dependent I have become on using other people's creativity as my starting point. I became quite stumped.

My bff Emily recently wrote a post on creativity that I really enjoyed and I think it got me thinking about this topic more. I was thinking how I enjoy using other people's talents (creativity, design, arrangement, etc) to help me out with my creativity. I mean, we all have different strengths and we are meant to share those. So places like pinterest and google search can be filled with other people's creations and I enjoy looking at them and being inspired. It was just an interesting moment when I couldn't find anything to be inspired by! What, like no one had ever had a similar wall to decorate? What was the point of the internet??

It made me want to learn more about design or just broaden my experience so that I can create something from the start, instead of needing other people. And I think there is nothing wrong with that, but of course it's helpful to be self-sufficient. It would be nice to be able to create from scratch a wall for our house, but I think that takes practice. Or maybe it doesn't, and it's just me who likes to just go from what works for other people.

I enjoy following directions. I find tutorials for things I want to make and I like when they exist and I can just follow it. I like to follow recipes. And the people who create inspiration for me most likely draw upon other sources for their project. It just seems to be a big cycle of creativity and inspiration.

However, I find the relationship between creativity and sharing to also have a downside. I see a lot of room arrangements or outfits or whatever it may be online, and then when I try to create something for me, I am stuck wondering "is this right?" "Does this look ok?" "What are the rules about hanging up something on a wall?" "How many frames are right?"

I came to the conclusion that really, anything works. People put grand and busy things on their walls, and some walls have one tiny thing. They mix patterns, mix anything and everything and it's all a thing. It's all some kind of style. And the important thing is that you enjoy looking at it.

I do think there are some general "rules" that govern decorating, but something I have also picked up over the last week of searching design blogs, etc., is that yes, there are rules. But they are also just fine being broken. You should be happy in your space, and if you need rules to get you started, that is great. I like the idea of using general rules but making it work for you. (which would usually mean "just follow the rules"). So I just gather my inspiration and make a plan.

So, how are the projects coming? Dave said if I was going to do this, I had a week. Well, things aren't done after a week, but since I have a plan that just needs to be completed, he is surprisingly chilled out about it. He hates long, drawn-out, what-about-this plans.

I moved our dresser over and it created a little corner that I think I want to get a little rocking chair for (this may be challenging; that space is quite small and I hate most rocking chairs) and have it be a little reading/play corner for Sam. He does only have a wall in our closet to call his own, after all. So we have a plan, but it's still in the early stages. But hey, we have inspiration and we are moving forward.

And now we just need to replace the paper rectangles with real frames and we'll be done with that!

What do you do when you want to decorate or make something? Are you a go-off-what-others-do person or do you like to start from scratch and draft up plan after plan?

why hello there.

Sam loves to look at himself (when do they know it is them?) and sometimes he gets a little close. Before he crawled, he would spend time on his tummy in a mission impossible pose: he would swing his arms back and balance. 

We've had some fun with friends this month. We made some cookies with a friend and her little girl, who is adorable. Their apartment makes me dream of wood floors, which, actually, may be a reality soon. I emailed our landlord as a last-ditch effort when I was trying to solve the sam/floor problem and he was basically like "sure, let's do it!" win.  But a yard of oil cloth has worked wonders in solving our floor problem.
 
 
 I made this coconut tres leches trifle and it was, of course, delicious. Mel is my favorite. I didn't used to like coconut flakes, but I think I'm getting there. (and I think this is like the third time I have talked about coconut flakes in a month) Do you find as you get older you try things again and like them? This past year I've made great strides with nuts and coconut. I also made little bow tie cookies for a baby shower I helped throw. It was fun. Stack-able sugar cookies, man. They are one of the secrets of life, I think.


8


 his model shot ^


Eight months is a big deal around here. Even though he sits up most of the time, Sam still finds himself on his stomach (reaching for something, falling over), which he really hates. But now he tolerates it as it happens a lot. He even rolls over onto his stomach from his back, which is so new to us. He learned just last week to push himself from his stomach into a sitting position, which improves his quality of life. You can ask him. 

He is so close to crawling, but he can still get around. He will be sitting, end up on his stomach, rotate around and go backwards a bit as he pushes himself up. Just mobile enough for us. The only downside to all of this is he wakes up in distress most of the time as he has rolled over and backed himself into a corner or he is stuck on his stomach. I think when he is sad he forgets all of his skills. It's a bummer.  It's like....just roll back over!

edit: I wrote this yesterday, and he totally crawled this morning. a few "crawls" (?) at a time, then he quits. go sam! 

He started this thing where he will make a humming sound when he is eating, especially when he's loving it and wants more put in his reaching radius. It's hilarious. He also has 3.5 new teeth to help him out. He loves these sweet potato fries

He loves looking at himself in the mirror, splashing like crazy in the bath, standing and playing with books. He still loves to kick his legs when he gets excited (in the air and on his back) and it is hilarious as usual. This kid! He is so fun.

vests

I really loved reading all the comments on short/long hair. Thanks for the responses! Continuing on the things I don't understand, I want to say something else: I do not get vests. And I'm not saying they aren't cute or fashionable or anything, I just don't get them!

Any time I can think where I would want my core to be warm, I would also want my arms warm. AND I would rather have my arms warm than my core, as that is generally warmer than arms. I don't know, does anyone have any insight? I also may not really know how to wear one, either. Sam was actually wearing one when we went camping. it had a hood, which was nice, but so did his other jacket we brought. I don't know why I picked that over a jacket, except I thought it maybe wasn't cold enough for two long-sleeved layers. BUT again, why did I want to possibly over heat his core? I don't know.

Also, fashion blogs. They are a little weird, right? I mean, I enjoy looking at pretty clothes/outfits on pinterest, but there are sooooo many fashion blogs where people post like TEN pictures of themselves casually posing like "oh, me? you happen to come upon me dressed like this and showing off my bracelets and purses and oh, I'm just looking to the side like this. Look at my hand lightly touching my hair.". I DON'T GET IT.


swinging

Last week we went to the park a few times with some friends and since Sam can sit up now, I tried out the swing. He has never been in one before and seemed to really enjoy it. The first day he was fighting hard to stay awake and the second day he just fell asleep within a minute of being in the swing, and then slept there for at least half and hour until I took him out because I thought he looked uncomfortable. I suppose since he was still sleeping, I could have left him there, but I figured we had hogged the swing for long enough!

we survived.

 

We survived camping! Sam only woke up screaming twice! And everyone else heard  (thin walls, of course) and it was a little embarrassing. Like you know how you apologize for your baby being a baby and everyone is like "oh, it's totally fine! we can't hear them or smell or whatever!"

No. Everyone was like "Oh, yes, we heard him but didn't know which baby it was." or "Oh it was fine, my wife just thought it sounded like someone was pulling his arms off". "Oh yes, we totally heard him but it's fine....." Or they asked how he did before revealing that they already knew how he did.

But camping was still pretty fun. The weather was pretty nice for Oregon camping (it didn't even rain). We had s'mores (with nutella instead of chocolate bars which was delicious and genius!), played uno and did not freeze, although Dave predicted it would get too hot in the tent.  Never in my life have I been too hot camping. My feet got toasty but it was still cool in the tent and Dave and I both slept light, wanting to make sure Sam was not freezing or you know, dying...

And sometime around 4:00 am I just wondered what the point of camping was. To sleep on the ground? I know many of you agree with me on that one! If you are hiking to get somewhere and need to camp, it's one thing. But car camping kind of doesn't make sense. We did talk of doing a small backpacking trip before it gets too cold with some friends. We will have to see if that actually plays out!