vacation and home again

Lilikoi getting to take a real bath (rather than the sink bath she gets at home) at Gramps's house on vacation.

We are home again after a wonderful Thanksgiving week spent in the suburbs of Chicago. We stayed with Alex's dad (Alex Sr. aka Gramps) and his wife Laurie. Gramps, Alex, and the kids went to the zoo one day (I stayed back to work), and Gramps took Lili for blustery walks to the library. We visited with some of Alex's closest friends and got to see all our kids melding and playing together~ so cute... We had Thanksgiving at Gramps and Laurie's and got to see three of Alex's uncles, his Aunt LuLu and several cousins, it was great fun. We took the train (a highlight for Lili) to meet Alex's high school art teacher near the city for lunch, and that was sweet.Gosh, I am sure we did so much more, but those are some highlights.

I was listening to the Chicago radio broadcast "Wait Wait Don't Tell Me" today and it hit me that people from the Chicago area seem to be funnier than the rest of us... Has anyone else noticed this phenomenon? Some of Alex's friends are hilarious without even trying to be. The same can be said about Alex's extended family (although some of them work very hard at it). Just an observation...

Also, something else you should know about Chicago: you can get chocolate cake at a drive through. That really won me over.



I finally have finished most of my holiday ornaments and listed them in the etsy shop today! They are going to look so cute adorning a tree!

I just figured out how to make a coupon for my shop too. So I made one for all of my blog readers as a thanks for all of your kind support this year. Get 10% off any sweet mess art for one month. Just fill in this (2010HOLIDAYS)  as a coupon code when you check out. OR, let me know you are a blog reader when you come visit me at the BIG CRAFTY on December 5th to see my ornaments in person and get a discount!
*Also, my earrings will be listed sometime next week hopefully  : )
 I hope everyone has safe travels this Thanksgiving! 


Ornaments in progress

 Here are some of my miniature prints for my 2010 ornaments. In these pictures I I had just applied a high quality resin dome sticker very carefully onto the print. After that step,  I cut away the excess paper . I am looking forward to seeing them all complete!


Alex and Eliseo

 When Alex's Mom came to visit she brought along a gigantic suitcase of childhood memorabilia. It was fun to look through old family photos. Particularly noteworthy was how striking the similarity of Alex and Eliseo is.

 and I think this one of David and Alex looks just like Lili and Seo.


piece work

Once a week I trade childcare with my friend Michelle. I take her daughter for 3-4 hours one day, and she will take Lili the next. 
Often I try to get all set up so the moment Lili is gone and Eliseo goes down for a nap I can start being productive. 4 hours sounds like a nice chunk of work time but honestly, it often doesn't go as planned. Seo will wake up after 30 mins, or....... I can't think of what else would prevent me from accomplishing what I set out to do. But, I promise you, 4 hours is gone in a heartbeat it seems...
I used last week to take some photos of my new earrings. I am still trying to fine tune my designs, but it was fun to take some photos and start thinking about how to make them stand out and look pretty when you are seeing them online.

I found this pretty milk glass holder at the thrift store recently. I don't know why, but I just love milk glass. And the jewelry looks so nice against the white I think.

After much deliberation and searching came to the conclusion that I didn't love (and I want to love these) the ear wires I could find, so I started making my own. I learned how on You-Tube. It is amazing you can learn almost anything online. And then I had my supplies shipped to my door.Amazing.

I had hoped to have all my earrings posted online and ready for the start of the holiday season, but it just isn't happening. Time feels short, but surly an hour here and an hour there will lead to a satisfying bundle of work.



I was just thinking to myself it had been awhile since I made a blog post... Then to see how long it has been... it must have been another whirlwind of a week. 

Let's see. 

Alex and David's Mom and younger brother came to stay for a few days over Halloween which was a ton of fun. It is such a shame to live so far away from them! Here is my Mother-in-Law Kiss to the right. Awesome right?!!!
Okay, here is the cuddlier side of Kathleen:


Lili's other grandma (Memere Linda) made her this beautiful princess dress for Halloween.
Here is Princess Lilikoi and her Unicorn Daddy-O:

Halloween and trick-or-treating was all great fun. We celebrated Alex's upcoming birthday with a costume party later that night. Then Tuesday was his real birthday. He made this chocolate peanut butter birthday cake... Then Wednesday morning he flew to NH to pick up our new car that my Mom and Paul gave (!!! ♥ !!!) to us. He drove the 18 hour drive back home yesterday.
Today is slated to be a day of installing our new wood stove. It certainly is getting chilly~ so yay!