hello california christmas

christmas, hello monday By December 26, 2016 5 Comments

We had a fun relaxing Christmas day with family. Last year we were in England–the Christmases were so different, each amazing in its own way. Our California Christmas was surprisingly chilly this year–it only got up to about 56*–which for our part of California is cold!

I’ve got lots of pics to share. How about some hellos for a brand new week?
Hello tiny tree. We stayed in an Airbnb and I brought a little tree with us.

Hello berries and blurry boys walking to the car.

Hello love.

Hello pug butts.

Hello pretty table and llama wrapping paper for a tablecloth.

Hello cuddles with grandma.

Hello aunties.

Hello kisses and being silly.

Hello spiderman. We were all so happy he made an appearance!

Hello bright eyes and smiles.

Hello playing a game. Prizes were wrapped under various layers of saran wrap. One person tries to unwrap as fast as they can while the person next to them is trying to roll doubles with two dice. It was so fun!

Hello smooches from auntie

Hello cutie pug.

Hello helping daddy play guitar.

Hello Lucy the dog who’s almost a human.

Hello finally getting the cold I’ve avoided for weeks. It caught up with me.

Hello not sleeping well and feeling extra thankful for good coffee.

Hello wrapping paper and boxes to clean up.

Hello absolutely loving this children’s book.

Hello wondering how long we can leave our Christmas tree up. I love the twinkle lights.

Hello to you. It’s a brand new week with beauty to be found. What are you saying hello to this week?

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hello very loved elf

christmas, hello monday By December 12, 2016 5 Comments

My mom bought this handmade elf for me for my first apartment after college. He been very loved. Last Christmas David carried him around quite a bit and at some point he lost an arm–and we never found it. But that hasn’t changed our love for him.

It’s Monday, how about some hellos for a new week?

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Hello watching Hallmark Christmas movies. I can’t get enough!

Hello absolutely precious children’s book. David and I keep reading this one. It’s a beautiful gift for kids.

Hello rain and more rain. We love it!

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Hello feeling unmotivated in the kitchen. What’s your favorite dish to make this time of year?

Hello busy busy in the shop. Customer service is working overtime getting back to every inquiry. I apologize for the wait.

Hello sniffles. We all have them and they seem to hang on!

Hello getting ready to wrap presents. I found pug wrapping paper at World Market!

Hello loving the Christmas lights all over town.

Hello to you! It’s a brand new week with beauty to be found. What are you saying hello to this week?

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hello christmas time

christmas, hello monday By December 5, 2016 10 Comments

These pups are eager to please. I can’t believe how still they sit for photos! We have our house decorated {mostly} for Christmas. I love twinkly lights. So fun! It’s Monday–how about some hellos for a new week?

hello-christmas-time-lisa-leonard-01 Hello Louis and Beasley. We love you!

hello-christmas-time-lisa-leonard-02 Hello getting the house ready for the holidays but finding it impossible to keep clean! Oh well.

hello-christmas-time-lisa-leonard-03Hello head tilt. Such a heart melter.

Hello moving through our Christmas movie list. Two of our favorites are Polar Express and Elf. How about you?

Hello making a gingerbread house this week. It’s a tradition.

Hello busy busy in the shop. We have a sale going AND you can still get it in time for Christmas!

Hello reading this book. It’s by the ladies who started Juicy Couture.

Hello loving this sweater. Isn’t it adorable? I love love the zippered back.

Hello teenage boys. I can’t believe how much my boys are eating. It’s insane! They’re both having a growth spurt.

Hello thinking about starting the show This Is Us. Do you watch it?

Hello meetings this week. Lots of planning to do!

Hello wrapping up my Christmas shopping. I think I’m almost done!

Hello to you! It’s a brand new week with beauty to be found. What are you saying hello to this week?

 

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keeping everyone happy

christmas, finding beauty By December 2, 2015 10 Comments

The Christmas tree is up and December is officially here. So we should be feeling happy and joyful, right? Magic is in the air! So how come I feel overwhelmed? I love the twinkling lights, the cinnamon candle I’m burning smells good and there is a chill in the air. It’s a festive time of year–but that doesn’t mean I have to feel festive–at least not all the time. It’s still real life, right? Mornings are rushed, dinner time comes too quickly and by 8pm I’m ready for bed. As a mom, I feel responsible to make everything run smoothly, to keep everyone is happy and to somehow make every moment magical. It’s an impossible task I put on myself. It’s too much pressure. And bottom line–it doesn’t work.

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Today I’m reminding myself–every moment doesn’t have to magical. I’d rather have moments that are real. Real is good. Real is honest and true.

Today I’m reminding myself–It’s okay to not feel happy. It’s okay if I don’t’ feel happy or the kids aren’t happy. The pressure to be happy doesn’t make anyone happier. It’s okay to feel tired or sad or even angry. It’s okay to not be okay. And strangely, things are more okay when I let them be what they truly are.

Today I’m reminding myself that grace is real. I have a family that showers me with grace. I have friends that don’t expect me to be perfect and actually embrace me in my brokenness.  This community is real. In the craziness of life, we share our stories–the beauty and the mess. I love that.

Instead of keeping everyone happy, I want to keep things real. To let this journey be what it is–beautiful and crazy and messy.

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how we created the ‘cross of light’ ornament {matthias remarkable imagination}

christmas, inspiration, matthias By November 18, 2015 3 Comments

Months ago, I was working on our Christmas ornaments and I asked Matthias if he would like to design one. At eleven years old he draws and sketches all the time–I mean, he literally carries his drawing pad and pencil case everywhere. And this is nothing new–he’s been drawing since he was three or four years old. I thought an ornament would be such a fun gift for aunties, uncles and grandparents. I asked him to draw whatever he wanted and planned to create the ornament from his drawing. Take a look at what he came up with!

*Also, scroll down to the bottom to see our ornament special happening today!*

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Matthias drew the cross himself, then from his drawing, together, we created the ‘cross of light’ ornament. It turned out so well!

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I asked Matthias why he wanted to draw a cross for the ornament and he said, Christmas is about Jesus and the cross symbolizes Jesus. Beautiful!

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The ‘cross of light’ ornament is finished with a sheet red ribbon and can be personalized on the back with a name or the year.

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I love having Matthias use his talents and creativity to be part of the business. He loves to draw and sketch. This was a perfect opportunity to use his artwork in a new and different way. He inspires me!

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All ornaments are buy two get one FREE today! Enter code ‘happytree’ at checkout. Yay! They’re the perfect gift for each kiddo, teachers and dear friends.

You can find the ‘cross of light’ ornament here. Click here to see all the 2015 ornaments.

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whoa! 30% off the shop!

christmas, coupons By November 12, 2015 12 Comments

Friends, our biggest sale of the season is HERE! Save 30% site wide–this is huge! This is even bigger than Black Friday. Screen Shot 2015-11-11 at 9.27.37 PMThe shop has been crazy busy and I want to make sure you get your special gifts in time for Christmas. Use code handmadeholiday and save 30%! Screen Shot 2015-11-11 at 9.28.26 PMEach piece is handmade and reflects the real, messy beautiful moments that fill our hearts. Screen Shot 2015-11-11 at 9.28.05 PMDue to the high volume, I encourage you to shop TODAY! Save 30% off with code handmadeholiday.

*Click here to shop*

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Together is a beautiful place to be {real moments, real memories}

christmas, finding beauty By November 10, 2015 9 Comments

I looked at the calendar yesterday and saw that we are already well into November and my heart did a flip. Wow, Christmas comes so fast every year! Even with the best intentions, I seem to find myself overwhelmed and rushing in those final days before Christmas. When I saw the date on the calendar, I felt like I was already behind. I was on the path to failure before I’d even begun. But Christmas isn’t about having it all together, is it? This year I want to slow down and go a little easier on myself. I want to focus on real moments, create real memories and love the people around me well.

When I say ‘real moments’ I mean, I want to get away from trying to create the perfect picture to post on instagram. I want to be in the moment. I want to let it be imperfect and honest. When I say ‘real moments’ I’m admitting to myself that there will undoubtably be stress, frustrations and messes. I mean, life simply isn’t perfect–no matter how hard we try {and believe me, I’ve tried!}. But in the stress and mess there are silly moments and laughter. There is forgiveness. There is love. There is togetherness. Together is a beautiful place to be. I believe this is where memories are made.real moments real memories-01-2

Last week, I cleaned went through all our Christmas decorations and gave four large boxes to the thrift store. Now everything we have fits into two bins {except our white tree}. I’m keeping the decor simple this year. Truthfully, I never used it all–it was just clutter. The decorations add to the fun, but it’s really about being together. A few twinkly lights and go a long way.
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I’ve started Christmas shopping but I need to make a list and get organized. It will come together, right?!

real moments real memories-03-2This is our busiest time of year. The shop is crazy busy {so exciting!} and there is so much to do to prepare for our own celebration. This year, I’m making decisions to embrace the imperfect and live in the moment. Stress will happen, but if I’m not aiming for perfect, I’m pretty sure there will be less stress. And the stress will be less stressful. And what is, will be enough.

I want to focus on my family and not worry about the dishes in the sink.
I want to sip cocoa, watch Elf and say all our favorite lines.
I want to take naps and drink lots of vitamin C to fight off the inevitable cold.
I want to let the kids decorate the tree even if all the ornaments end up on one side.
I want to give meaningful gifts and not worry about having it perfectly wrapped.
I want to remember that the bedhead, the pancake breakfasts, the kids laughing and playing, the gift wrap littering the floor, the yummy food, the time together, the love–these are the things that matter. What’s real is what matters.

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real , full of meaning, and from the heart – wear them all!

christmas, jewelry, what I'm wearing By November 5, 2015 3 Comments

Oh friends! Our holiday collection is HERE! We’ve been working on this collection for months and months. It’s always surreal to see something go from a sketch, to a sample, to a product on the website, and then finally seeing it around YOUR neck or on YOUR finger. It always seems sort of unbelievable. It’s humbling. It’s an honor to be part of your story.

As we launch our Christmas collection, I’m thinking and planning our family Christmas season. I already know it will be imperfect. But I want to make memories we’ll keep forever. I want to let it be messy and fun. I don’t want to worry about the tangled up twinkle lights–we’ll just get a new set. My home doesn’t have to be perfectly clean or tidy. Maybe we’ll play too many video games or eat too much pie. I’ll probably loose all the gift  receipts I planned to keep safe. I’ll likely stay up way too late on Christmas eve, wrapping gifts. I want to remember mornings snuggled on the couch with coffee. I want to side by the fireside and feel the warmth on my back. I want to focus on the moment, focus on love, focus on what matters. This is what’s real. #myrealchristmas

Can I share some of the new designs with you?Screen Shot 2015-11-03 at 7.34.58 PMThere are so many rings in this collection that make my heart melt. They are full of meaning–and I want to wear them all! I think I may need more fingers. 😉

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The rings are meant to be stacked and the NEW bangles are meant to be layered together. It’s togetherness that feeds our souls. Each of these pieces represents someone who has your heart. Each of these pieces is created just for you. The symbolism holds deeps meaning.
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The ‘good things in threes ring’ above is different and funky and I love it. Good things often come in threes–three little words, “I love you.” Three people–You, me and us. Three is a significant number. See all the details for this ring here.
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And the birthstone stacking bangles? Oh my goodness. Hand-wrapped gemstones are breath-taking. Layered together they make a huge statement. I love them!
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These pieces are about real life and real love. It’s the messy, beautiful stuff of everyday that makes our lives meaningful. It’s not perfect. It looks nothing like a pin from Pinterest. It’s honest and true. This is where I live. This is where you live. This is where we journey together and find hope.

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This season is full of rushing and worrying and stress. What if we set it aside and enjoy the blessings all around us? What if we let each other be imperfect? What if we let it be what it is? I think we’ll find more joy and meaning, don’t you?

See all the new ornaments here.Screen Shot 2015-11-03 at 7.35.34 PM

You can see the whole collection here. Let’s make real memories this Christmas. #myrealchristmas. What’s real is what’s beautiful.

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holiday home tour

christmas, decorating By December 9, 2014 6 Comments

We’ve got the house all decorated and we’re soaking up the Christmas season. I love sitting near the tree and enjoying the twinkle lights. I’ve got a cinnamon candle burning and Christmas music playing. Wanna step inside for a tour?

The front porch is super happy, especially after the sun goes down. I love the red poinsettias and twinkle lights.

A couple years ago I made the DIY doormat. You can see the directions here. So fun!

I set up our new nativity from the shop in our entryway. I want it to be the first thing we see–to remind us of why we celebrate Christmas. And it’s high enough so David can’t reach it.

Love these hand-painted signs by Barn Owl Primitives. And have you seen their new website? Friends, it’s so beautiful! And watch this video about Kristi’s story. So cool.

Adorable, right?

The handmade nativity is very dear to my heart and I have been so humbled to see it resonate with you! These are still available and you can have it in time for Christmas!

This painting is a thrifted find and the lamp was super ugly–but I stripped the shade and spray painted the base to make it new.

A happy silver bells wreath hangs near the windows and reflects light.

 Our white tree feels very vintage and the ornaments pop against the white background. It’s from Target online.

Every year, grandma gives the boys a new ornament. We love pulling them out every year and reminiscing about past years.

And every year we add a new ornament from our shop. Again, it’s not too late to order for Christmas!

This ornament was a souvenir from England. So many sweet memories and so much meaning.

I kept the mantle almost the same, I just added a few trees and a big ‘merry christmas’ sign from the shop last year.

This elf was a gift from my mom when I was in college. I still love him 20 years later!

These letter cards {from the shop last year} were layered with printed paper and brads and they make a big impact.

We keep our ampersand sign up all year, but the red feels extra Christmas-y and fun during the holidays. You can find it here, from Junk Art Gypsyz on Etsy.

It’s tradition we hang our stockings on the staircase. We did that when I was growing up.

Is your house decorated? What’s your favorite decor for the Christmas season.

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hello california snowmen

christmas, DIY, hello monday By December 8, 2014 11 Comments

It’s been warm here in California BUT lately we’ve had some rain and things have cooled off a bit. We need the rain so badly and we’re feeling thankful and cozy. Since it doesn’t snow where we are, we have to get creative with making snowmen. This year, the cousins painted snowman ornaments. I found these at Target and they were a HIT!

It’s a brand new week. How about some hellos?

***Hello Monday is where I greet the new week with an open heart and a fresh perspective. It’s a new beginning–and there’s so much to be thankful for! Join me by leaving your own hellos in the comments section or linking up a hello monday post there!***

Hello cousins gathered around the table. This is the stuff memories are made of!

Hello finding a craft project that works with three year olds and twelve year olds. Victory!

Hello taking this project very seriously.

Hello letting the paint dry and then hanging them from the tree.

Hello planning for other Christmas crafts. It’s our tradition to make gingerbread houses and cut snowflakes.

Hello wanting to eat healthy this month BUT being way too tempted by sweets at every turn. January is a new beginning, right?

Hello busy busy workshop! We are kinda crazy over here!

Hello quiet evenings at home. We’re working through all our favorite Christmas movies…Elf, Rise of the Guardians, Polar Express, and more!

Hello wanting more coffee because the mornings are gray and chilly.

Hello planning gifts for teachers, aides and babysitters. They are such a blessing in our lives!

Hello haircuts. Didn’t we just get haircuts? It’s already time again?!

Hello to YOU! What are you saying hello to this week? Leave some hellos in the comments or link up your own hello monday post there!

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