Hand-crafted fabric taxidermy from Softheads in Barcelona

Hello friends! It's been quite a while since I posted to the blog. It was a bit of a shock to the system figuring out how to efficiently work over the last year with the new baby and suffice it to say that I was able to shoot quite a bit but all of the fun extras like blogging and social media were not a priority. However now that Willa is little bigger I'm hoping to pick up where I left off. Thank you for staying in touch!

As I get back into the swing of things expect a few simple posts including this one:

I'm loving Softheads from Spain; beautifully hand-crafted fabric taxidermy. I'm adding them to my moodboard for a dreaming little reading nook for Willa. Which one is your favorite? The unicorn is pretty awesome. 


New editorials for Oh Happy Day

There have been several editorials that I shot for Oh Happy Day popping up on their site. Below are a few including these simple fringe party hats and this awesome colorblock flag garland. Take a peek on their site. 

 

p.s. Did you see Jordan launched a party store? I'm pretty sure it's the happiest place on the internet. If you're planning a party of any kind there's no place else to shop. It's all the coolest stuff for parties expertly curated for you. I also love all of the creative direction and branding for the shop. How cute is the fiat?




Baby Shower By Mail

Baby showers are a wonderful way to celebrate a new mom and the brand-new baby who is about to join her family. So often though because of distance and timing important friends and family members can't make it to the baby shower.

Therefore in lieu of an in-person baby shower my endlessly clever sister and dear friends decided to organize a "baby shower by mail." I have so enjoyed being on the receiving end of this lovely idea and unconventional alternative to the traditional baby shower. 

The baby shower by mail was inspired by the Pinterest board I made for baby Willa's nursery.

The baby shower by mail was inspired by the Pinterest board I made for baby Willa's nursery.

My sister worked with Alix Sorrell, a talented illustrator and designer to create the invite. The design was inspired by this pretty little folded  baby shower invite from the Oh Happy Day blog. Alix used the Pinterest board I created for the baby's nursery as inspiration for the design - I loved the giant whale! The card asked "guests" to send creative contributions in the form of a poem, lullaby, or short stories to Joe & I so that they can be bound into a book and we can read them to our daughter. The envelope included a response card and a pre-addressed envelope to make it super-easy for our friends and family to reply. In another few months my sister is going to create a book with all of the responses.

Since the baby shower by mail was sent out we've received several responses every week and I look forward to the blue envelopes showing up in the mail. We've received such a diverse range of poems, drawings, prayers, lullabies, and even stories about Joe & I growing up put into verse. Reading these little bits of love from family and friends around the country before and after the baby arrived has been such a heart-warming experience and made these early months with our brand-new little one even more special.

I have zero regrets about not having a fancy in-person shower (although they are wonderful, too) and I think a baby shower by mail is such a fun and thoughtful idea especially if the expectant mom you know has family and friends scattered around the country. 

I've never heard of this idea? Isn't is lovely? Would you consider doing something like this for a friend or family member?

Thank you to my sister and my dear friends for making this happen and also to Alix for such a fun design! I can't wait until Willa is old enough to look through the book with us. 

The reverse side of the card featured a giant, awesome whale!

The reverse side of the card featured a giant, awesome whale!

The response cards were perfectly simple and most people used both sides.

The response cards were perfectly simple and most people used both sides.

A Perfect Desert Babymoon

I absolutely loved being pregnant and one of the biggest highlights of that special time was a babymoon Joe and I took to Palm Springs. If you can find the time and the funds to take a babymoon you'll be so thankful you did.

I have three main tips for every babymoon:

1) connect with your partner

2) keep your trip simple and stress-free

3) relax and pamper yourself

 

In my opinion, the most important thing to do on a babymoon is to connect with your partner. Pretty soon your alone time with that person will all but evaporate - at least for a little while - and the stress of a caring for a tiny human being who needs your love and attention 24/7 will invariably put some strain on your relationship. That's why it's so important to strengthen your relationship in those last few months of pregnancy and a babymoon is a great way to reinforce that goal. I knew Joe and I would both enjoy a relaxing week next to a pool so that's what we chose.

Secondly, keep the trip simple and stress-free. Initially, we thought about traveling to Hawaii or Mexico but decided against both of those locations because of the added cost, travel times, and added complications (e.g. we would have to be more aware of hospitals in both locations). Palm Springs is a short, inexpensive flight from San Francisco. Having been there before we knew what to expect and the idea of floating in a pool all week with nothing else to do sounded divine.

In keeping with the simplicity theme - try not to pack your day with too many things. We had a handful of things we wanted to do but they were simple like; drink a date milkshake (or five), have brunch at Norma's, visit a fruit stand, shop for vintage furniture, take a drive to Joshua Tree, get in the photobooth at the Ace Hotel. Simple, basic stuff that we could do on any day of our trip. Basically we had zero commitments while there which was awesome. We did some of these things and never felt stressed out. 

With the goal of relaxing and pampering ourselves we chose to stay at the Korakia Pensione. The Korakia is a special place. It's tiny, incredibly beautiful, and the vibe there is really peaceful and romantic. Imagine a small resort full of white-washed walls, vintage Moroccan furniture, outdoor daybeds for naps and reading, and water fountains full of flower petals. With the Tangier-inspired architecture and decor the hotel stands out in a sea of mid-century modern hotels in Palm Springs like the Ace Hotel or The Saguaro. The latter two hotels are super-fun - don't get me wrong - but for this trip the quiet, serene vibe of the Korakia was perfect. An added bonus for us is that we traveled during Palm Spring's slow season and only encountered a handful of guests.

It would be remiss not to mention how warm and friendly the staff was at the Korakia. Many times they brought complimentary popsicles to us while we sat by the pool (what pregnant woman wouldn't love that) and every afternoon they set out cool mint tea and ginger cookies for the guests. After the sun sets they lit what seemed like hundreds of candles placed all over the resort and played an old movie every evening under the stars. 

Between the stess-free schedule, the friendly hotel staff, and the peaceful and serene setting - it was a perfect, little getaway. 

p.s. I've included a ton of imagery below all from our hotel the Korakia Pensione plus a few more tips for planning a perfect babymoon.


The entrance to the Korakia

The entrance to the Korakia

The pool in the Mediterranean Villa - the newer part of the hotel

The pool in the Mediterranean Villa - the newer part of the hotel

Breakfast is served here every morning

Breakfast is served here every morning

Old movies are played here every night under the stars

Old movies are played here every night under the stars

Bocco court

Bocco court

Olive trees, everywhere

Olive trees, everywhere

Reading after a day by the pool

Reading after a day by the pool

One of the countless fountains

One of the countless fountains

A FEW MORE TIPS FOR A PERFECT BABYMOON:

1) Keep your travel times to a minimum. I'd pick a short flight (less than two hours from your home-base) or an easy road-trip (you're pregnant so factor in bathroom-breaks).

2) I would recommend traveling towards the middle to end of your 2nd trimester. That is when most pregnant women are still feeling good and at that point you do not need a letter from your obstetrician to fly (although I brought one because I was looking kind of large). Also, if you travel towards the end of the 2nd trimester (before 30 weeks) your growing and aching body will appreciate the trip that much more. I traveled at 29 weeks and it was the perfect time to spend a week floating in a swimming pool.

3) Ask your hotel for a discount - especially if you're traveling during the slow season. I made a quick call to the front desk at our hotel and asked when the manager would be in so I could ask for a discount (it's always easier to get a discount from a decision-maker). I ended up emailing the manager and easily got a little discount.

4) Think minimal. In everything you do from the location and activities to your wardrobe keep it all so simple and you'll find the trip much more enjoyable.

5) Don't overspend before you leave. I often find myself buying a few new things before a vacation. This time I made do with what I had and put the extra funds towards a nicer room and a pre-natal massage and mani/pedi while in Palm Springs. It was so worth it.

6) Finally, and most importantly don't take for granted your ability to sleep in, stay out late, take naps, and spend all day by the pool. Once the baby arrives you can daydream about that relaxing week away.

I hope you enjoyed this post. are you planning on taking a babymoon? If so, where? if you went on one where did you go?  Do you have any other suggestions for planning a perfect babymoon? Let me know!