Hi and welcome! 

I'm Leslie.  Mom, wife and artist. With 3 of my 4 kids almost grown, I can look back and share with you everything I learned on my favorite subject, raising a family. Along the way, I'll try to help you stay organized, laugh (at my many debaucles), start traditions, remember what's important. But, in the end, if you follow these wise words from Albert Einstein "Rejoice with your family in the wonderful land of life" you can't really go wrong.  




fun with my family

{ b a n n e r s }

since it's going to be a banner year (sending out positive intentions) here are some fun banner projects for you and the kids to make   xo



these little banners would make such cute gift cards!

 These because anything copper is amazing!

This is feeling a bit advanced. Cute though....

And this one is just perfect.  In fact, you can just buy it right here.



lemons xo

 something about lemons this time of year, make me happy! 

 Here's a painting from my new favorite artist


Here is some brilliant packaging.  Not sure I need it, but based on the packaging alone, I would buy it.


And finally, a recipe for limoncello.  I am currently trying this.  I have peeled the lemons and there's nothing like big piles of fragrant lemon peels lying around to attract the kids attention.  So, I had them scrape the pith out.  They are sad this is an alcoholic drink, so I'll be making two versions, apparently.




Hey...who's gonna help me take down this tree?!

Solutions to family problems can be like an art project.  They benefit from good design.  

I love to take a problem we're having in the family and come at it from a creative angle.  Take the problem of taking down your tree after the holidays.  Not much of a problem, but still needs to be done.  Messy, no fun themes or holiday music going on, everybody's suddenly in love with the dead tree and just fine with leaving it there forever, etc.  

The solution I came up with involves cake and more presents! Voilá!  Suddenly everyone wants to join in the fun.  We wait until Three kings day, the 12th day of Christmas, or more formally, the Epiphany, {which is usually around the 6th of January} to take down our tree.  This is traditionally known as the day the 3 wise men visited baby Jesus.  Of course, there's the lesser known 3 wiser women who arrived afterwards, carrying a night nurse, diapers and casseroles.  But we don't really celebrate any of that.  Our tradition focuses on celebrating the end of another year together, all of our gratitude, cake, a few gifts, and taking the tree down. All of which changes each year, depending on who's home, what's going on, and how much energy I have! 

This year the cake was a lovely, boxed yellow cake accompanied by a rich and creamy, store bought chocolate icing. YUM.  Oh yes, I forgot to mention, you hide a baby in the cake and whoever finds it gets to open the first present.  We hide a small lego character. 

The presents, are items that are more necessity than anything.  Socks, underwear, nice shampoos and lotions, etc.  the gifts aren't the point. (I don't really buy name brand underwear or fancy socks or beauty supplies all year, so when they get these, they are super excited!)

We play some music (not christmas) take turns taking ornaments off the tree and opening presents and eating cake.  We laugh, we sweep pine needles, we have a good time.  I love it.  I have to say, it's one of my favorite nights of the year. 

Here are some other versions of this "Epiphany" from more "normal" families you might like.


Examples of what to put in your cake besides legos from the wonderful Pioneer Woman.

 Spiced cookies to remind you of all the mhyrr the wise men brought for the baby.


Crowns are always a good idea.

Have fun!



look closely

tan bark from a playground.  paint.  -------- FISH!

tan bark fish! 


hosting good friends in summer

We are lucky to have friends.  Wait.....I mean.... we are lucky to be able to thank them for being our friends by treating them to some fun on the lake!   I'll start with something yummy like this...

I'm afraid the wheels all fall off the bus after breakfast>

some slow cooker stuff; cuz I'll be on the boat:

don't hate me, but I might try to make these:

But, in reality.  when the kids notice it's 8 o'clock and the grown ups are still in the horshoe pit; I'm hoping they can follow this recipe.

Can't wait to eat, drink & be merry with our friends on the lake!

happy 4th of july!