Category Archives: Celebrate!

We are getting married!

Engagement Photos

Jason asked me to marry him this weekend, and I went from a “strong maybe” to a “definite yes!” immediately. I’d been joking with him for months when he would talk about our future that, “Hey! I was still a strong maybe.” And then I’d shake my had obnoxiously, signaling the “All the single ladies!” dance moves of Beyonce.

As in: dude. Put a ring on it.

Now that he has, and with a lot of luck and patience, I hope we live happily ever after.



aka: Feyonce


Hearts and Love and Cherries Too

Valentine sewing

Valentine Sewing


Galentine's crafts

Galentine's crafts

A bit of Galentine love. These and a couple other pillows are being sent out to girlfriends this week.

I was asked to speak to a group of soon-to-be college graduates the other day. Most in the room were young women. I was asked a bunch of questions about sexism in the workplace, when to push back, what to do to stand out, etc.

One of my strongest pieces of advice was to never be the mean girl. You remember those girls — the ones that always found a way to make you feel rotten? Instead, I said the best way to make your new workplace a fantastic, life-changing, challenging environment is to decide going in that you are going to be kind, friendly and take no crap. You are also going to work to build each other up.

I did feel a bit like Leslie Knope giving a galentine’s speech, but hey — what did they expect?


The Sewing Room is Open for Business

Sewing space set up!

When I went on the walk-through for J’s house, I had to focus on keeping my feet on the floor when we walked into one of the bedrooms to see it had been converted into a sewing room. The previous owner had custom cabinetry installed and racks for fabric in the closet. I wanted to giggle with glee. A real sewing room! Not everything spread out on the dining room table, where you have to shuffle to get things organized and tucked away before guests come over.

A real sewing room.

It took 18 months or so of sorting and organizing, but this week the sewing room finally transformed from the catch-all for everything else in the house to an actual sewing room.

Valentine sewing

Valentine Sewing

Just in time for some Valentine and spring birthday projects.



A Few Ideas for Valentine’s Day

cu of tags

A few posts over the  years — if you need creative inspiration for Valentine’s:

Heart cupcakes for delivery


Heart-shaped baking

The ultimate brownie show down (scratch vs. box)

All the Single People Dinner Party (and menu)



Milagro cards

Photo cards

The Lover’s Dictionary — one of the best books you can give for Valentines


Valentines pillow for Rachele


Heart pillow 

Tea towel aprons

Funky flower pin

Knitting needle roll

January knits


Gloves and hats


Spread some love!


Christmas Roundup

Christmas 2015

This holiday season was a blur. Like many, we ran from one event to another — wrapping gifts and mailing letters as we could. It was wonderful and I wish we could do it again. The time included a quick trip to Texas to see my folks, wearing antlers, of course.

Christmas 2015

The same antlers made it on more than one hike with friends too. I was happy to see so many friends come home to Arizona for Christmas, many who wanted to hit the trails and enjoy the weather while they could. We hiked a LOT in the last two weeks.

Christmas 2015

My Christmas wish this year was for us all to wake up in Christmas jammies and enjoy breakfast together. Everyone participated happily. I even caught Z wearing his snowmen pants later in the week. Willingly. !

Christmas 2015

I read this beast of a novel during the last couple of weeks too. What a great story! I loved this, and am looking for her other books too. 4/5 bananas, absoloodle.

Christmas 2015

Christmas 2015

And there was a bit of sewing and handmade gifts this year. This is for my niece Alexis, who very well may play women’s soccer professionally one day. She is such a sweet kid too.

I hope your holidays were full of happiness and time with the ones you love!

Hey Vanna

August Crafting

August Crafting

August Crafting

August Crafting


I’m a sucker for that stack of new crafting books at any retail store. Even though most have the same ideas recreated with the latest cute fabrics, there are times a new project grabs me. I’ve never sewn applique, or used a dresden plate. So, when I saw a pattern for this pillow and have a friend who is soon going on Wheel of Fortune, I knew the combination was perfect.

I’d learn something new and be able to give a ridiculous good luck gift.

The pillow is still in process. See how that circle is a bit wonky? I need to work on the template. And I’m going to sew a zipper along one edge to hold in the pillow. I have wanted to do quilted pillows for a while. Log cabins, etc. I think a quilted pillow is a charming gift — something you can easily tailor to the recipient. And one quirky pillow on a couch or chair adds a pop of color and a story.


What We Hold Dear


Look, there is nothing great about moving during a heat wave in Phoenix. Nothing. The silver lining on this one is sweaty — a damp, humid, hot and quickly cranky perspective. There is nothing like working outside in 110-plus weather to make me want to cry. In a pool. With something frozen to drink in my hand.

At one point, I drove to Costco just to stand in the produce freezer. Seriously. I stood there among the two-pound plastic clam shells full of blueberries and spinach, soaking in the cool until the goosebumps on my arms rivaled cherry tomatoes. My teeth chattered. I skipped back to my car.

But here is the thing: precisely no one thinks I deserve a pity party for deciding to move in June in the desert. So, grab a cool drink, slap on some SPF 45 and rest in the shade — I’m am delivering the bit of good I’ve gathered from the last week.


1. Organizing. This is every organized person’s delight. I spent three hours on Sunday consolidating spices and singing along while I worked. (There were no blue birds singing along, but their joy was present.) Also, I made a gardening chart for the new owners of my Tempe home. They are gardeners, and I wanted to emphasize a few critical points: NO MIRACLE GROW. And, PLEASE WATER.

2. Minimizing. My realtor mentioned she was happy there wasn’t much clutter when listing the Tempe home. And while I’d love fall over patting myself on the back, there was still so, so much to give away to Goodwill. Do you read this minimalist blog? I am enjoying it, and learning to live with far less.


3. Prioritizing. There are items I own that I love, and I can’t precisely explain why. Milk glass, for example, holds a kitschy, country chic spot in my heart. And there are those items that I simply will not do without. My mom’s quilts are at the top of that list. I am loving matching linens to beds with freshly laundered quilts in this new home. (Everything is remarkably more colorful.)


4. And of course — love! Why else would you move in June? Love, man! Lots and lots of love. But that is another post entirely.

Back to the unpacking. The “we’ve moved” cards have been ordered. If we regularly exchange letters, you’ll likely see one in your mailbox mid-July.

Hope you are well, friends!






I Like My Changes by the Boatload. Or Uhaul-load.

So, my home is on the market, I’m either shopping for a new car or deciding on a suv shipping company to relocate my current car with me, and roles and responsibilities at work are ever-changing. But more importantly — the thing I’m scared to even discuss in fear that just mentioning it may ruin it (VOLDEMORT) — a publishing company has expressed initial interest in my second novel.

Peach Springs Trip



I wrote it.

The world has not ended.

I’ve been talking about that a bit with friends and family and thought it was only fair to share here too. You, my dear blog internet friends far and wide, are the reason the first book did so well. (Have I thanked you for that lately? Thank you!) So, you should be among the first to know that the second may actually be available in your local bookstore. Or, if dreams come true — your local bookstore and library.

Things are busy over here. I’m not ignoring you or this space. I’ve had less I’ve wanted to share, which is entirely another post about maturation in the times of blogs. I also have more of a public role thanks to my job and don’t want my underwear hanging on the line for all the world to see. Figuratively. Literally, I’m still using my clothesline, which is awesome when it is 107 out because everything dries before your eyes.

So, friends. Hang in there with me. I am ever thankful for the many friendships I made through this site. And I’m looking forward to sharing more of the great details of all these new adventures soon.

Now, it is time to return to my new apparent favorite hobby in my 30s: peak of summer packing and moving. You would think two cross country moves, and a cross-state line move all in the last 4 years, of course all during summer months, would have made me a winter moving fan.

What it has taught me instead is life unfolds exactly as it is meant to.


Kelli, and a very petulant Willie Nelson Mandela