Category Archives: Guest Blogger

The Big Questions: Where do you see yourself in five years?

Our lovely friend Tiffany Moore wants you to die happy. She’s a dream-powered freight train (aka a certified life coach) and she loves to push your buttons and get you to figure out how the heck to get the most out of your one precious life. She also likes to ask questions. BIG questions. She recently asked us to participate in her Big Questions extravaganza—and sent us a slew of thought provoking questions. The one we gravitated to?


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DOTTIE: Oh, what to pick! There are so many plans swimming around in my head. Lots of big ideas but also just a slightly better version of the way life already is. Here is what I’m thinking!

STAYING COZY. Like Dorothy, I am a true believer in there being no place like home. So, I probably see myself still living in the Bay Area because I love my friends and family and living in the Bay Area. I wouldn’t mind a different house with bigger bedrooms and closets and maybe a bigger backyard so I could raise chickens and bees, but I adore my neighbors to the point where I’d rather just stay put. I would like a very nice vacation house on a lake somewhere back east in Maine or maybe up in Oregon or Washington.


CONTINUE POSITIVE CHANGES. I did just make some serious and amazingly life changes that if I had been asked this question a year ago, I would have included something along the lines of working from home with clients that I love and who respect my work.  And I’m very lucky to be on the road to accomplishing that right now. Although I’ve only been working from home for less than four months, it has already had a profoundly positive effect on my life. A lot of stress induced issues are gone. I sleep much better. My eye tick is gone. I think my relationship with Eric is sweeter and most importantly, I feel my time with the Peach is amazing. Watching her personality unfurl over the past three years has been amazing. I’d also love to add another little one to our family mix, and without the job stress, I know I at least have a better fighting chance at it now.

I’m still trying to get the balance right, and get into a better routine.  I have all of these projects around the house—crafty as well as organizational that I sometimes just can’t seem to focus on doing.  But I guess that is just life, right?  There will always be that one project you wanted to finish.

WORK IT OUT. Speaking of routine, I’d like to add regular exercise to my daily routine.  This goes beyond trying to fit into a smaller size vintage dress, but just feeling better.  Be able to keep up with the Peach and help lead her into a healthy lifestyle for her future. Health is wealth!

GOING GLOBAL. In five years I see myself expanding my career to include more teaching and lecturing. And have that lecturing career be an international one. Why can’t I teach social media strategies in London?  My recent trip to Paris unlocked a life-long dream to do more traveling. And I know it can be done. I’d love to take an international trip once a year for the rest of my life! Oh, the list of places I’ve wanted to go is so long—Sweden, Prague, Belgium, Japan, New Zealand and so so so many more.  I also see myself doing more national and local travel with my wee family.  I’d love to do more camping, my road trips, more fun.  I just have to sometimes get out of the day to day and plan some adventures.

In summary, I see myself in five years with a very strong work/life balance as a consultant, allowing me to spend time with my family and friends, travel internationally, and focus on living a healthy life full of fun exercise and time for my creative crafty outlets. OK, your turn Alix!

ALIX:  Wow, those are great lady. I hope you reach them all! So, hmmm, where do I see myself in 5 years? Gosh, I feel like soooo many things will happen in the next five years. The biggest thing for me is that little Wolfie will be 13 years old (ahhhhh!) and I think that will be a major difference in our life. I have to say because of this, my take is slightly different from Dottie’s….I too love our house and adore our neighbors, but as much as I love it, I actually hope we are living some place entirely! I’m a little scared to move, but I think change is always a great catalyst. While I love my little life, there are definitely things I hope to accomplish in the next five years. Here’s how I’d like to see things morph and shift…keep in mind, I’m taking “money no object” to heart. This is the most glamorous edition of my future dreams!

LIVING IN A NEW HOUSE. Our house is pretty great, but seeing us in a slightly bigger place is a goal of mine. I really want a great bedroom for Wolfie…his space right now is pretty small. I’d also love a guest room for when people come to visit (Hi mom!)…a bigger back yard for Sammy…a tree-lined street with a sidewalk so we can actually have trick-or-treaters (we don’t have a sidewalk in our neighborhood). And lots and lots of big windows and sunlight! If we could bring our next-door neighbors along with us, even better!

LET’S HIT THE ROAD. I’m lucky I actually get to spend a ton of time with my guys. We love our weekend outings. BUT, I want to make sure we make time to travel further. With grandparents all over the country, Wolfie is the world’s best little traveler—so I’m not sure why we haven’t gone to more distant places. I really want to be adventurous and expose my boy to the world. We need to go back to Germany (where my mother is from) and I really want to visit Scotland (where Greg’s grandparents are from) AND…..I want to lounge. I think relaxing vacations are so important. We need more of those! I hope to carve out more time for special family vacations and rather than wasting money on silly stuff, setting up a real vacation fund. Even if we can’t make it to exotic locales, just exploring the country together is something I know we will all enjoy.

A LITTLE SPACE FOR ME TO WRITE. I have a hard time visualizing where my career will be in 5 years. Mostly because I’m not sure what I want. I love what I do, and part of me wants to continue doing exactly what I’m doing! Then another part of me thinks I’d love to be doing something totally different. Growing Modern Kiddo into more of an official career?? I’m not sure. What I do know is I love writing. And one thing on my perpetual To Do list is writing a children’s book. One for younger kids. And a young adult book. I have something I’m really excited about brewing and when five years rolls around I hope that this project is well into it’s second or third phase. Also, right now I write with my lappy on my lap, or I sit at our dining room table. I think carving out a special office space for me to focus on work and writing would be amazing and a great way to reach my goal.

LET ME ENTERTAIN YOU. Before Wolfie was born we were very social and had little dinner parties and people over all the time. When he was a toddler, things like bed time and naps meant we didn’t do as much entertaining. It’s something I love to do, and we have such wonderful friends I need to get back on it. Regular little gatherings are so much fun and can be simple and easy peasy—just a bottle of wine and good food and good company.  Of course it wouldn’t hurt to have a swank back yard to do it all it.

FRESH CHOICE. Finally, Greg and I are always talking about improving our diet. He’s much better about it than I am but I really want to get healthy. Hopefully trimming down is a by-product, but I’m not getting any younger and improving my diet and adding in exercise is something I reeeeeally want to see happen in the coming year (and years!).

So whew! That’s it. Now we have to ask, where do you think you will be in 5 years? (especially with money as no object!) Do you have any plans percolating? Any wishes? I leave you with one little piece of advice:


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Thanks to our girl Tiffany Moore who always believes in asking the Big Questions – the kind that help you decipher your (actual) dreams — and (actually) fulfill  ‘em. Find out who else is answering The Big Questions today (9 other lovely bloggers!) and how you can win your own Big Question session here!

ALT SUMMIT // You Should Read These Blogs


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Just finished my panel here (along with my fabulous panelists Meg, Rachel and Natalie) at Alt Summit on the Best  in Up and Coming blogs. Some of these are true up and commers and some are people we just love and think you should have on your reader. Take a gander and see if you find some new inspiration! Feel free to leave some of YOUR favorite “Blogs We Might Not Have Heard About, But SHOULD!” in the comments.

ALIX FROM MODERN KIDDO PICKS {@galexina}

Draw! Pilgrim

Frecklewonder 

Honey Kennedy

Katie’s Pencil Box

Make Something Happy

Midcentury Living

Nubby Twiglet

Whorange

The Red Thread

RACHEL FROM BLACK EIFFEL PICKS {@blackeiffel}

Angela Hardison 

Jane Reaction

Note to Self 

Odessa May Society

Dandee Designs

The House that Lars Built 

Simple Village Girl

Cubicle Refugee

NAT FROM NAT THE FAT RAT PICKS {@natthefatrat}

Field Guided

Ruffling Feathers

A Merry Mishap

She Blogs She Blogs

An Apple A Day

The Homebook

Le Dans La

INSTAGRAM :: ink361.comweb.stagram.comlistagram.com

Posie Gets Cozy

Darling Dexter

MEG FROM MIMI + MEG PICKS {@meg_biram}

Art Hound

Life’s Little Jems

Kelly Market

Court & Hudson

Pattern Pulp

The Artful Desperado

My Vibe My Life

You’re Welcome

Five Tips To Help Handle Stress and Stay Happy!

Friends, thanks so much for all of the great feedback and support for my Non-Labor day weekend. It got me thinking that all of us mamas (and daddys) out there need to take some time for ourselves.

And it made me think of Tiffany. Sweet Tiffany–the best “life coach” you’ll ever meet. In fact she likes to think of herself more as a change agent or a magic maker who believes that everyone can live their happiest, most sparkly life, starting NOW.  Hells YEAH!

And Miss Tiffany collected her top five tips to help center and de-stress parents. So, without further adieu, here are the wonderful tips from Miss Tiff!

Hi everyone! It’s Tiffany. Here are my Top Five Tips for Helping You Handle Stress and Stay Happy!
1. Count your blessings. Literally.

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Gratitude Journal
from Chronicle Books

A Gratitude Practice requires just that — practice. Take a moment out of each day to note three things, big or small, that you are grateful for. A list of three is usually a good place to start.

2. Play dress up even if you don’t feel like it.

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Photo by Stefanie Renee

Play dress up is my life coach-y way of making take care of yourself sound fun. The key to taking care of yourself is to recognize what small things you need to feel better about your day, to feel more you, less Jack’s mom. If a pretty dress will do the trick, go for it! If a morning meditation class or cup of tea will do it, go with that. The key is finding small things you can do each day to help you get to your happier place.

3. Don’t forget to have fun!

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source

One of my favorite things about kids (and dogs while we’re at it) is that everything they do tends to happen based on the potential for fun. The park: fun. Reading: fun. Cleaning up: yeah, not so fun…unless it can become FUN! Figure out what seems fun to you and then see how you can make it fun for the kids too! (For me, daily dance parties are a MUST!)

Spend a day following the fun and see what happens. You never know, it could end up being really…fun and who doesn’t need more fun in their lives?

4. Take a break.

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via pixelcloud

Just 15 minutes a day can make the difference between feeling pulled and stressed and being able to feel centered and grounded. Turn off the tv, put away the must-get-dones and take a few minutes to just be. Breathe. Sit. Be.

Stillness can be the thing that creates more energy and space for actually getting things done.

5. New motto: Extra + Early = Easy

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Photo by Shutterbean

When things start getting harried, let easy and extra do the driving. Heading out with the kids for a playdate? Start prepping a few minutes early, just to give yourself a little extra room.

Cooking everyone’s favorite for dinner? Double the recipe and pop the extra servings in the freezer for a quick dinner when time is short. See Tracy’s frozen burritos for inspiration!

What are your favorite tips for handling stress and staying happy?

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Thanks, Tiffany! Just what I needed to hear!  If you ever have any life decisions that you are having a tough time making, I highly suggest going to Tiffany.  BTW, Tiffany realized one of her dreams when she co-founded Teahouse Studio, a creative workshop space in Berkeley. Alix and I have both taken workshops there and it’s a spectacular space! Find out more at her websitefacebook or twitter.

Gettin’ Crafty :: Dollhouse Bullet Planter DIY from Danielle

When the Peach turns five, she is going to inherit my sweet dollhouse, which is chockablock with mid-century madness, because my parents bought the less contemporary dollhouse since it was deeply discounted. AHH YEAH!

And to make sure I give it the right bit of vintage oomph, I’m SO going to make one of these sweet dollhouse bullet planters using this fun and easy to follow tutorial from Danielle Thompson from Thompson Family-Life.

Aren’t they stunning? So perfect. And thankfully Danielle, who is the queen of step by step tutorials really breaks it down, so you know you’ll get something great at the end of it.

 

And these little full ones are just too adorable for words. I think I’ll make some and put them on the edge of my office window sill.  Wouldn’t that look cool?

 

Thanks so much for sharing with us, Danielle!