Here is what I created for the 
pegdoll swap I hosted last month...

Mermamas & mer-tots!


I will have a blog post showing dolls created by other swap participants soon, and the photos will also be posted in the pegdoll photo gallery.


fairy garden 2014

For the past 5 years, Donni of The Magic Onions has hosted a fairy garden competition, and for the past 4 years this has inspired us to maintain a fairy garden of our own.

Looking through photo archives of past fairy garden contests at The Magic Onions, I always admire the elaborate villages created by participants, imagining inch-high fairies entering the tiny garden worlds created by mothers & children...

Our own, simple fairy garden, located in a terracotta urn next to the front door of our house, has been a source of wonder and amusement for my children, too.  Both my 3 year old and my 10-year old like to rearrange the rocks, help choose the plants and come up with ideas for small embellishments and improvements. 


This year we added thyme, strawberry plants and a strand of brass bells which ring in bright, sparkling tones to delight our local fairy population.  And much to our amazement, this year, a wee mushroom house (with a teeny, tiny door) sprouted up right in the center of our little fairy garden...

Sometimes we leave small gifts for the fairies, and sometimes they leave gifts for us.  In our recently updated garden the fairies left us an antique key.  It seems fairies like lost-objects & treasures from the human world (especially lost-objects which are old & quaint).

You can find information about how to enter this year's fairy garden contest at The Magic Onions, and for some ideas on how to build your own fairy garden, you can have a look here.

Thank you, Donni, for inspiring so much magic, and for your devoted work as ambassador between the fairy world and our own.


sunday :: sf


My parents had a one-day stop over in SF on a cruise from LA to Vancouver (the ship they're on started in Florida, went through the Panama Canal and has sailed up the coast of  Mexico -- they are catching the last leg of cruise).  What a day to attempt a rendez-vous at the Ferry Building! Between a baseball game at ATT Park and the Bay to Breakers Race, traffic was fierce.  But a Pink Moon CD in the car kept us happy, seeing people in costumes from the Bay to Breakers made us happier, plus coffee from Blue Bottle and all headaches vanish to the ether.

And my boys got to see their grandparents for a few hours today.  Could I have asked for any more?


starlight & candles

A year ago I wrote a post about placing candles on our supper table to bring a sense of quiet and peace.  The candles helped for a while, but after a few months, my younger son graduated from sitting in a chair where he was seat-belted to sitting on a regular chair at the supper table.  Open flames and a curious, head-strong, free-ranging toddler? Not a good mix. This spelled the end of our supper time candle ritual.

Recently, however, the thought crossed my mind that flames contained within glass jars might work, and so I decided to enlist the little one, himself, to create decorative candle-jars for our table.  Usually I prefer open-ended art activities for my little one -- big sheets of paper and a box of crayons or paints, play-dough, stringing beads, etc... This goal-oriented activity felt ambitious, but I proceeded anyhow, and was pleasantly surprised.  My little one was able to follow instructions and proceed step-by-step. He was pleased to participate in the creation of something meaningful & beautiful, and the tiny glitter stars we placed on our candle holders twinkled nearly as bright as his eyes...

In case you would like to make a starlight candle lantern, too, I have written out the (very simple) instructions below.

Clean glass jar(s)

Paint brush

Waxed Kite Paper or tissue paper cut or torn into rectangles and squares, between 3 cm-6 cm in size

Mod Podge (I placed a small amount in a cup for less mess and easy access)

Small star shapes -- either glitter-confetti or cut from opaque paper

note: if you cannot get Mod Podge, I think PVA or standard white craft glue, diluted with a small amount of water, would work as a substitute.

 Step 1: Paint some Mod Podge on a section of the glass jar.

Step 2: Place a piece or two of the wax or tissue paper on the area to which the Mod Podge has been applied.

Step 3: Paint a layer of Mod Podge over the bits paper.

Continue painting Mod Podge over sections of the jar, applying small pieces of paper, and then covering each section of paper with another layer of Mod Podge.

Step 4: While the Mod Podge is still wet, apply tiny stars, one by one, scattered over the surface.

Step 5: Cover each star with a dab of Mod Podge.

It might look like a mess...

But when the Mod Podge dries, it will be beautiful!  I can't wait to see what these jars look like on our table tonight with candles lit inside.  Instead of sparkling stars, we will have silhouettes of tiny stars against a glowing night sky.  Twinkle, twinkle...


drum roll please

Drum roll please (and a teeny, tiny 
peg doll sized trumpet fanfare...)

Here it is!  The cover of my new book!  Yes, the title is Making Peg Dolls & More: toys that spin, fly and bring sweet dreams.

The basic idea behind the book is this:  I wanted to bring peg dolls off the shelf and out of the doll house to spin, fly and travel about in the larger world.   Between the covers of the book there are patterns for dolls to sit on your pincushion & help mind your stitches, dolls flying through the air on dragons and bright winged birds, dolls to accompany children through the day as they face the world and through the night as they dream on their pillows, plus so much more.

Currently, the book is set to release this coming October -- just in time for holiday gift-giving.  I will keep you posted with more details as they are available.

p.s. A special thank you to an elf named Lucy who designed such a pretty cover!


the elves have been busy


 The elves at Hawthorn Press have been busy...


And they are finally ready to show everyone the cover of my new book!

Please come back Monday for a peek at the beautiful new book cover.  I will also be revealing a little about what you might find inside the book once it is released in October...

See you Monday!