I used to be that person who hardly ever got sick. Neither did anyone in my family. On the rare times that we did, we would just power through it. So I’d look at people who had to take time off for a cold and secretly think they were being a wimp. That sounds insensitive, I know, but it’s true. I honestly didn’t realize that the common cold could make people feel so terrible.
Dads are the greatest, aren’t they? From Gregory Peck to Robert Redford, check out some of our favorite famous fathers. My dad is my partner in crime: we have our own language (literally), we’re constantly scheming up new ideas, and he always laughs at my jokes — even when they’re not funny (probably because I return the favor). Happy Father’s Day! – xo, Annie
From Princess Diana to Eartha Kitt, we’ve rounded up photos of our favorite famous mothers. Not pictured: My favorite mom of all (not to mention my favorite person in the whole wide world), MY mom, who is currently taking a well-deserved break on Sanibel Island. Happy Mother’s Day! – xo, Annie
If you’re looking for the perfect, classic travel day in Manhattan, this is it. There are two great parts about this itinerary: 1) It can work perfectly for a single person, a couple, or a family with kids, depending on the way you tweak it, and 2) It’s budget friendly, but feels rich.
Everything we do at Sycamore Street Press is with the goal of living a simple, beautiful & creative life, and in helping others do the same. There are so many people who have inspired us on this path, and we’d love to learn more from them! So we decided to start an interview series on the topic. Today we’ll hear from Erin Boyle, author of the book Simple Matters and Reading My Tea Leaves, a lifestyle blog celebrating a practical and purposeful approach to a simple, sustainable life.
Tell us a little about how you got started doing your blog.
I started my blog in the very beginning of 2009; so this January marks seven years that I’ve been at it!
Everything we do at Sycamore Street Press is with the goal of living a simple, beautiful & creative life, and in helping others do the same. There are so many people who have inspired us on this path, and we’d love to learn more from them! So we decided to start an interview series on the topic. Today we’ll hear from Janneke Luursema, a Dutch photographer based in Amsterdam.
Tell us a little about yourself and how you got started doing photography.
Hi, my name is Janneke Luursema, I’m an Amsterdam based photographer, mother of three, and plant enthusiast. You can see my work on www.botanicstilllife.com.
I started photography after working a few years as an editor at a publishing house after getting my master’s degree in psychology. After which I realized studying psychology is one thing, but working as a psychologist requires totally different capabilities. Which I had not. So. At one point, I asked myself what I really wanted to do with my life (I did not have kids back then). What was my passion? I love to explore, I love to learn new things, and I decided to go back to school again. Photography. Turned out it was a good choice, I really love to take pictures, everyday since then. It helps me relax and fuels my battery. It keeps me sane.
My kids are getting to the age where they LOVE Halloween. I can remember as a kid, it was my favorite holiday. Dressing up + candy?! The best. We scoured the web for some of the most adorable DIY Halloween costumes out there. Take a look…
This past January, I went in for a routine yearly exam and walked out with an autoimmune disease.
Not really, but that’s what it felt like. I didn’t really think there was anything wrong with me when I went in. I’ve always been a really healthy person — I rarely get sick. But as I chatted with my midwife during the visit, I mentioned how I was still tired all the time despite making an effort to get 7-8 hours of sleep each night. I didn’t feel back to my old self even though my baby was almost two years old. It was also a lot harder to lose the baby weight this time around, even though I was trying twice as hard. I was forgetful, and more… But I figured these could all be attributed to the fact that I’m getting older, I have two young children and two businesses. “I’d like to run a little blood work just to see…” she told me.
Now, I’d heard people say that auto-immune diseases are “the new ADD”. So many more people are getting diagnosed with them, and it’s a bit controversial. Is there really a huge epidemic of these kinds of illnesses? Or is it just a new fad? People who believe that the epidemic is real blame a lot of it to the way food started changing in the 1950’s. Pesticides, GMO’s, fast food, processed food, etc… It’s true that our diets changed drastically at this point in history, and personally, it does make sense to me that it would start affecting our health in unforeseen ways. But I don’t claim to be a scientist, a dietician, or any kind of expert. I can only share what my experience is… Read More…
Where do you go for a family reunion with small children involved? It’s tricky, right? In my extended family, there are 7 kids ages 4 and under (including my two). I’ve learned that the only vacations I want to take with that many littles involved are the kinds where we just stay in one spot. Preferably, with access to a body of water.
With that in mind, my siblings and I spent some time searching through several home rental sites. We considered North Carolina’s Outer Banks, Michigan’s Upper Peninsula, the central California coast, and lots of places in between. But the location that had the nicest big houses for the best prices (within the US) was Puerto Rico.
Plane tickets to PR were the same as plane tickets to the East Coast, which seemed like a great deal. (And we’re scattered across the country, so flying would have to be involved no matter what.) In addition, none of us had ever been to Puerto Rico, so we were excited at the prospect. With all that in mind, we booked our trip. Despite some unforeseen hiccups, I’m so glad we did! It really was one of those memorable trips we’ll be talking about forever.
More about Vieques with Kids (including tips & recommendations) after the jump…
Have you ever wondered how you might like having a family-run business? Well, Kirk and I have been married for 10 years now and running Sycamore Street Press for 7. And we’ve survived, ha! Actually, we love what we do, and feel grateful to be able to do so. We don’t have everything figured out (of course) but we’ve learned quite a bit along the way that I’d love to share.
Keep reading to see my top 5 considerations before starting a family business…
I’ve neglected Lars and Ingrid’s room for far too long! Time to gather inspiration and get to work.
For years, my favorite kind of kind of bedrooms for kids have been the ones that are playful, not too matchy-matchy, and have some grown up elements mixed in. All the better if it’s done in a California modern style like these.
What kind of children’s bedroom do you love best? – Eva
7 more California modern kid bedrooms after the jump…
One thing I love about being a mother is how it forces me to slow down and appreciate the simple things.
Having a little hike and picnic on this mountain pass near our home, for example. I have wanted to do this for years! But I didn’t make it happen until now, because I knew my kids would love it. We all loved it, and decided to make it a new family tradition.
We just got back from the National Stationery Show in New York City! (Were you following along on Instagram: @sycamore_co?) We had a blast seeing so many new and old friends in the paper goods industry. It really is one of the most supportive crowds around. And we were thrilled with all the positive feedback (and orders! thank you!) our new Minimal Bohemian paper goods received.
I’ll have an NSS show and tell post later, but for now, let’s take a look at some beautiful dining rooms, shall we?
When my mom was 12 years old, her family moved to Paris. Every Saturday, she’d hop a train into central Paris with her friends, and together they’d spend the whole day roaming that beautiful city — playing guitar in the park, checking out clothing boutiques, eating baguettes, and generally having a ball. She quickly picked up the language, a Parisian sense of style, an appreciation of good food, and a certain je ne sais quoi…
That’s her in the photo above, standing in front of the Pompidou Museum. The year — 1978. The outfit — classic. The white suit, the delicate rings on each finger, the contrasting bag slung over her arm… I feel like it would look just as chic on the streets of Paris today.
There seems to be a trend lately where people are saying that work/life balance is a myth. That it doesn’t exist… that you shouldn’t even try to achieve it.
It’s true that no one can achieve a perfect work/life balance, because no one is perfect. And I don’t think we should beat ourselves up over our imperfections. But I think if we closely evaluate what our priorities and circumstances are, and act upon them, most of us would be able to come up with a balance that works for us.
I’m not holding myself up as the perfect example here. I’ve made plenty of mistakes — that’s for sure. But as a mother of two small children/wife/artist/business owner, etc… this is an area I’ve thought about and worked on quite a bit over the years. For what it’s worth, I’d like to share the little trick that works for me.
It’s about this time of year that I start daydreaming about creating a beautiful outdoor living space for my family. In my dreams, it comes with a table and chairs for outdoor dinner parties, places to lounge for leisurely summer reading, and a charming playhouse or swing set for Ingrid and Lars to play on. Maybe there’s an outdoor shower or a greenhouse or a pool… and it’s all done in an unfussy yet magical way that fits right in with this California Modern style…
Do you have any dreams or plans for your garden/outdoor space/windowsill this year? – Eva
Click the link below to see 7 more examples of California Modern Gardens…
In the winter, I usually just want to hole up in my cozy home and printshop… but the other day, Kirk and I decided we would head over to the Midway Ice Castles and see what all the fuss was all about. We were not disappointed. They are incredible! How could they have been around for so many years before we decided to check them out?! Ingrid loved finding her way through the maze-like tunnels, and Lars looked fascinated and kept trying to reach out and touch the ice.
We’re lucky to live just across the valley from the ice castles, but if you live elsewhere in Utah or happen to be visiting the Beehive State in winter, I definitely recommend a field trip. – Eva
While in Paris with our toddler, the second bite-sized excursion Kirk and I took was to the famous Paris flea market, Les Puces de St. Ouen. (Sometimes known as the Clignancourt flea market after the closest metro stop.)
As usual, we planned this to take no more than a few hours so that we could keep Ingrid on her sleep schedule. (As much for our sanity sake as for hers.) By myself, I could have easily spent the entire day at this magical place. But a couple of hours was all we needed to find a few little treasures, get a feel for the place, and find the perfect lunch spot… Read More…