Lisa Leonard Designs

kayaking as a family

September 10th | family, san luis obispo

One of the things I wanted to try this summer was kayaking. A couple of years ago, some friends of ours took Matthias and David–and they had so much fun! So we figured we should be able to make it work.

I researched Morro Bay kayaking and Kayak Horizons had excellent reviews. We loved them and we will definitely use them next time we go {which I hope is soon!}
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Matthias was a little nervous but he did great!

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I love all the colors against the blue sky and Morro rock in the background.

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They gave us each a life vest. I love that silly face Matthias is making–what a ham.

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Can you see that smile on David’s face?

David and Steve used a single kayak, Matthias and I used a double. We wanted to keep David close by–and the single worked great. After a bit we ended up switching and I took the single with David and Matthias and Steve took the double.

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Matthias did a fabulous job paddling. He told me I was being too bossy, though!

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We pulled the kayaks up the sand bank and played for a bit. Matthias named this bit of land ‘Barnacle Island’.

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The three towers in the back and our kayaks on the beach.

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Matthias wrote in the sand with the oar.

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They’re checking on David to see if he likes kayaking. Love my boys!

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All four of us. I loved sharing this adventure together.

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David loved playing in the sand and he got it everywhere.

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Steve pulling the kayak out so we could explore more.

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There were lots of sea lions hanging out on this dock.

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We paddling around lots of boats and up and down the bay. It was a beautiful day. Afterwards, we got lunch at Blue Sky Bistro overlooking the water. It was such a fun day!

Have you tried kayaking? I’d love to hear about your experience.

nerdiness and leopard print heels

September 9th | what I'm wearing

I took these pics on this little pathway behind our local Target. I set the timer on my camera. As I was setting up a lady walking her dogs greeted me and said hello. Can I tell how completely NERDY it is to take outfit pics? I have to laugh. I try to embrace my nerdiness on a daily basis.

I’m pretty sure you can’t wear leopard print heels and be blue. They put a skip in my step! These have been my go-to jeans lately. They’re so comfortable and the bigh waist is flattering with a flowy top.leopard heels lisa leonard-01 leopard heels lisa leonard-02 leopard heels lisa leonard-03 leopard heels lisa leonard-04 leopard heels lisa leonard-05

Outfit details: Flowy top, Plenty Boutique {Santa Ynez}. Jeans, Target. Camisole, Thrifted. Leopard print heels {similar}, Target. Bag, TJ Maxx. Jewelry, My shop.

Sending out big hugs and encouraging you to embrace your nerdy side today. Nerds rock!


hello dominican republic

September 7th | dominican republic, hello monday

Last week Steve and I spent a few days in the Dominican Republic working on some new designs and connecting with our team. It was short, sweet–such a great trip! And we are glad to be home. I’ve been to the Dominican so many times in the last year–it feels like a second home.
It’s Monday–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 dominican republic lisa leonard-02Hello lush plants everywhere. It’s so green!

hello dominican republic lisa leonard-03Hello dentist’s office painted with my favorite color.

hello dominican republic lisa leonard-04Hello best coffee in the world.

hello dominican republic lisa leonard-05Hello casting tree. This wax is about to turn into sterling teenie tiny initials.

hello dominican republic lisa leonard-06Hello mold for the swing free earrings.

hello dominican republic lisa leonard-07Hello creating a mold for a new ring. Exciting!

hello dominican republic lisa leonard-08Hello map of the D.R.

hello dominican republic lisa leonard-09Hello wax that will soon be the connected heart necklace.

hello dominican republic lisa leonard-10Hello palm trees and puffy clouds.

hello dominican republic lisa leonard-11Hello Steve playing guitar. He’s in the D.R. I surprised him with a guitar to keep there. He sounds so great when he plays!

hello dominican republic lisa leonard-12Hello part of our team. Lots of planning and laughing and more planning.

hello dominican republic lisa leonard-14Hello busy streets of the D.R.

hello dominican republic lisa leonard-15Hello fruit and candy for sale.

hello dominican republic lisa leonard-16Hello beautiful church in San Pedro de Marcois.

hello dominican republic lisa leonard-17Hello jet lag. I slept ten hours last night. It was awesome.
Hello moto-conchos {motorcycle taxis}. They pile people on and drive crazy!
Hello missing Dominican coffee. It’s so delicious.
Hello day off school and work. It’s perfect timing. We can sleep in and take it slow.
Hello hiking with the family. We did a new {to us} hike last week and it was so fun!
Hello heat wave. It always gets warm in September.
Hello massage. I have a gift card that I need to use!
Hello making enchiladas this week and taking some to friends who have a new baby.
Hello photographing new designs to share with you. I can’t wait!!!!!
Hello to YOU! It’s a brand new week {and a short one at that!}

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


hiking madonna mountain

September 3rd | family, san luis obispo

Last weekend we tried a new hike–Madonna Mountain. It ends at a huge ‘M’ on the side of the mountain. The way up is a bit steep but definitely manageable. The landscape was dry {we’re in a severe drought} but breath-taking.

When Matthias was little we told him the ‘M’ on the side of the mountain stood for Matthias. So it was fun to hike there and see it up close. He struck an epic pose near the ‘M’–check it out below.

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David loves to be in the pack and soaking up the fresh air.

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The dry grass against the blue sky was beautiful.

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How did I get so lucky to call these boys ‘mine’?

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Framed by branches.

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Matthias, claiming his ‘M’ on the side of the mountain.

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Sunlight filtered through the leaves.

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This hike had lots of cacti–different from other hikes we’ve done.

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All smiles–I love it!

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After the hike we got cinnamon rolls. So it was pretty much perfect!

We’re on the search for more good hikes. I want to try a hike in Avila Beach that ends at a lighthouse. It sounds amazing!

plaid dress over jeans

September 2nd | what I'm wearing

I found this plaid dress at Target, brought it home and was unsure about it. Then I tried it unbuttoned over jeans and I liked it a lot better! It has simple lines and I love the plaid print.

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It’s a busy week full of travel, meetings and to-do lists. I need my most comfortable shoes for weeks like this one. I’m loving these booties that Steve got me for my birthday last month. They are crazy comfortable and very neutral.

And I’m also loving high-waisted jeans these days. No muffin top, super stretchy–it’s awesome.

Outfit details: Plaid dress, Target {in stores}. High waisted jeans, Target. Black tank, Old Navy. Booties, Frye via Zappos. Half full necklace, My shop. Sunburst ring, My shop. Swing free earrings, My shop.

hello dallidet adobe

August 31st | hello monday

On Friday, last week we did a shoot at the Dallidet Adobe with some of our best selling product. I can’t wait to share more, but here’s a peek behind the scenes! It’s Monday, 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!***

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Hello old adobe home with lots of charm.

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Hello sweet yellow flowers.

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Hello beautiful tiles.

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Hello beautiful succulents. Love!

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Hello sweet dog!

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Hello gorgeous model {also our babysitter-isn’t she beautiful?}

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Hello family tree necklace. A favorite of mine.

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Hello big camera.

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Hello bright eyes.

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Hello open circle necklace

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Hello stacked passage rings. {I love the mixed metals}

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Hello inside the adobe. Apparently the Dallidet daughter did painting and taxidermy. What a gal!

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Hello lavendar. 

Hello laundry. I have at least four loads waiting. How did this happen?

Hello lots of meetings this week. When I started making jewelry, I had no idea how many meetings would be in my future. Most of them are fun, though–so that’s a good thing.

Hello tired. I haven’t been sleeping well the last few nights. I may need a nap.

Hello extra coffee to get me through until that nap.

Hello taking pictures. I’m inspired to try some new techniques.

Hello dry hair. Anyone out there have any good tips for dry hair?

Hello craving sister time.

Hello catching up with old friends–it’s good for my heart.

Hello Monday–it’s here, ready or not! What are you saying hello to this week? Leave some hellos in the comments or link your own hello monday post there.

loving where we live

August 27th | decorating, inspiration

Our living room is where we spend most of our time. It’s attached to the kitchen, and we all hang out on this side of the house–eating, playing, watching television, doing work, etc.

These couches have been through the ringer. I can’t even count how many times I’ve scrubbed them clean. They have worked hard–some day soon they’ll need to be replaced. The coffee table is scratched and scuffed. The rug has spots and needs a professional cleaning. But there is lots of light, and color and coziness. It’s imperfect. It’s real life. It’s beautiful.

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The yellow lamps and pillows are from Target.

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I recently got the sheepskin to add coziness to this chair and cover up the fading upholstery. Fun!

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Check out the chair before and after. It’s had a second life–crazy! It’s pretty broken down and faded now. But such a fun color.

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The coffee table was thrift find. I painted it white and all the edges have worn away. It’s rustic!

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We keep lots of David’s toys in vintage crates under the coffee table. He loves to slide the crates out and go through the toys–flinging them all over the room. It’s pretty funny. Also, it’s easy to clean up. The rug is from Ikea.

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The mirror, sconces and books above the fireplace are all thrifted.

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Lots of music all over the house. Lots of noise too!

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That pouf is from Target. My friend Annie bought it and decided she didn’t want it. I traded her for a pair of earrings from the shop. Awesome!!

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The ampersand marquee is from Junk Art Gypsyz. It adds happiness to the room.

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Someday I want to paint those bookshelves white. I think it would brighten the room a lot.

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And here’s a close-up of the ampersand marquee and vintage typewriter {thrifted}.

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Two decorating books I can’t get enough of right now are The Nesting Place and The New Bohemians. So inspiring!

What room in your home gets the most family time?

big hair, don’t care

August 26th | what I'm wearing

This morning I overslept a bit. I rushed to get ready–black top and jeans–whatever is easiest. A little mascara and red lipstick go a long way. When I got to David’s school I realized I had forgotten his backpack–so I had to run back home and grab it. Then the school called to say I mixed up the boy’s lunches {David eats a special diet} so I had to go to two different schools and swap their lunches back. Then I ran to the workshop, was late for a meeting and we quickly took some ‘what I wore’ pics. My first thought when I saw them? Wow, I have BIG HAIR! It goes right along with my crazy day. Woohoo! This is my life.

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Feel like you’re the only one who doesn’t have it all together? We should hang out. Life is so imperfect and sometimes completely NUTS! I need to take a deep breath and get myself an extra large iced tea.

Outfit details: Jeans, Big Star via Zappos {similar}. Sheer tunic, K-la {I got this on my trip to North Carolina with Incourage}. Sandals, Miz Mooz {similar}. Sunburst ring, My Shop. Tiny initials necklace, My Shop {LOVE!}

Did you see we have a BIG end of summer sale happening?! Take 20% off the entire shop with code ‘sunset’. It’s a good day to treat yourself to a special necklace or a couple stacking rings. Click here to shop. 

hello hope, hello monday

August 24th | get creative, hello monday

Hello friends! It’s a brand new week and today the boys start their new school year. David is in 8th grade and Matthias is in 6th. We are excited for what this year holds!

I’ve been struggling with sadness over the last weeks and just a couple days ago the clouds started to part. I woke up happy and hopeful. It’s been a while–and I savored the feeling.

With hope and happiness comes creativity. I put together some little collages of beautiful things I’ve found on walks or at thrift stores. Inspiration is a good thing.

Life is imperfect. Life is hard. Life is beautiful. Life is to be lived. So today, let’s try to live it well.

It’s Monday. 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 collage hello monday-01

Hello air plants {I’m giving these a try!}, hello vintage print, hello feather, hello stones, hello swing free earrings.

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Hello jersey cow postcard, hello lavendar bottle, hello little twigs, hello swept away necklace.

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Hello little book, hello pretty illustrations, hello you’re my wish necklace.

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Hello sunburst ring. So pretty. To me, this represents hope. Each day is new.

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Hello packing lunches.

Hello special breakfast {chocolate chip pancakes, of course!}

Hello new desks, new classes, new teachers, new things to learn, new friends to make.

Hello trying hard to get outside, to walk, to jog, to sit in the sun. It’s good for my soul.

Hello praying and reflecting and journaling.

Hello house to clean and dishes to wash and laundry to fold.

Hello jewelry to make and meetings to have and dreams to pursue.

Hello boys to snuggle and moments to savor.

Good things are happening. It’s a brand new week–with beauty to be found. Today is a blessing, let’s soak it up.

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

sister birthday 2015

August 19th | celebrate the every day, san luis obispo, shops i love

Last weekend I got away with my twin sis, and my two younger sisters who are also twin for a sister weekend. All of our birthdays are in August and we’ve had this tradition since college.
How insane is that?!

We rented a luxury cabin {kind of like a tiny house} from Flying Flags resort in Buellton. It was adorable! We ate so much good food and talked and talked and laughed and cried and talk some more. I brought matching pajama bottoms for all of us because we’re nerdy like that! It was some much needed time away to rest and have fun. And of course I have lots of pics to share with you! At the end of the post I have links for our favorite spots in Buellton, Santa Ynez and Los Olivos.

sister birthday 2015 lisa leonard-21sister birthday 2015 lisa leonard-13 sister birthday 2015 lisa leonard-20 sister birthday 2015 lisa leonard-19 sister birthday 2015 lisa leonard-18 sister birthday 2015 lisa leonard-17 sister birthday 2015 lisa leonard-15 sister birthday 2015 lisa leonard-14sister birthday 2015 lisa leonard-16sister birthday 2015 lisa leonard-11 sister birthday 2015 lisa leonard-10 sister birthday 2015 lisa leonard-09 sister birthday 2015 lisa leonard-08 sister birthday 2015 lisa leonard-07 sister birthday 2015 lisa leonard-06 sister birthday 2015 lisa leonard-05 sister birthday 2015 lisa leonard-03 sister birthday 2015 lisa leonard-01In Santa Ynez:
SY Kitchen, I had soup and a steak salad. So gourmet!
Dos Carlitos, Get chips and guacamole to start. Shrimp tacos and mango margaritas are to die for!
Plenty Boutique–Love this shop! Great boots, dresses and jewelry.

In Los Olivos
Sides Hardware and Shoes, everything I’ve had was delicious.
Enjoy Cupcakes–blackberry wine cupcakes, please!
Artisans Gallery–so many pretty, handmade things. The courtyard is breath-taking.
Los Olivos General Store, cookbooks, lotions, olive oil and pretty things.
Honey Paper–fun stationary and journals

Flying Flags Resort, rent an airstream trailer or luxury tiny cabin. They have a pool, playground and ice cream shop.
Ellen’s Pancake House, you can walk from Flying Flags. I had the chocolate chip pancakes.
Industrial Eats, great oven baked pizzas and salads.

Ok, I’m ready to go back! It was so fun. Today is my actual birthday and we’ve got a date planned tonight. So fun! have a fabulous day, friends!