A Wedding That Keeps On Giving

I hope this finds you warm & well & that your holiday was full of laughter & good cheer.  My husband & I were blessed to get to sneak away for a road trip to the great, but cold state of Wisconsin to see our family & friends for our first Christmas together as husband & wife.  It was wonderful, refreshing & just what we needed to warm our hearts this December.

Speaking of marital bliss, we are excited to announce that our lovely October 8th, 2011 wedding is featured today on Project Wedding's blog, One Lovely Day.  Grab a warm beverage & pop on over to this wedding blog to read about Josh & I or to marvel at Paper Antler's wonderful photography of our day.  Here is a small taste of their talent with the photographs below.



A Musik Monday

You might just want to give these lovelies a listen on this rainy, slow sort of a Monday.  The 3 ladies that make up this band have amazing voices.  Sign up for their mailings & get 2 free MP3 downloads! 
They go by the name, The Staves & they are dreamy yummy. 

Or perhaps this gem of a lady who recorded this song, "Steal His Heart' in the girls' bathroom in the lovely Edinburgh, Scotland (Yay Scotland!!!!  Josh's family is Scottish).  This Emily & The Woods is brilliant.

If you want something in a minor key, only instrumental & with some beautiful cello-ings (not to mention a gorgeous painting to look at) try this band, Hungry Ghosts & you will love this song called 'I don't think of you anymore, but I don't think of you anyless'.  Just because there are not words, do not be fooled, this song will move you.

And one more for the road that you are on today, friend, an old favorite of mine by the lovey, talented Brooke Fraiser.  Try this song ' Soon and Very Soon' to bid you farewell. 

xoxo, heather.


Snow Gently Falls

Wherever this may find you & yours,
I hope that it is the merriest & that you are getting into the spirit of this
Christmas & holiday season.
May your day be bright & festive, friend.



Social Action + Marriage

Are you getting married in 2012 or know someone who is?  Please consider these amazing photographers, Paper Antler, to shoot your wedding.  Then run out & tell all your friends about the Fifty Nifty!  Paper Antler, 2 hip & wonderfully talented wedding photographers who also happen to be husband & wife, are soon setting out to embark on shooting 50 weddings in 50 states.  From these weddings they hope to donate $50,000 to She Dances, an anti-trafficking non-profit organization.  Each wedding they shoot, they will donate $1,000 so the more weddings they book in 2012, the more money will be donated to this awesome cause.  They need your help- they still have some dates open in 2012 around these glorious United States.  Help me to spread the word!  Jonny & Michelle shot our wedding in October & did such an amazing job!  Learn more about this project of theirs or follow their year-long journey here!

Photo by Paper Antler

You're invited!!!


Owl & Howl

I came across an adorable free printable 2012 owl calendar that you can make for your home or office or as an adorable Christmas gift.  It is from My Owl Barn & there is absolutely no catch.  You get to design your own mini-calendar that's sure to be a hit.  The best part, it's easy as 1, 2, 3!  Hoo knew?

Step 1:  Click here.
Step 2:  Choose 12 whimsical designs, 1 for each month, & download.
Step 3:  Print & assemble. . .then enjoy!

My Owl Barn's pre-selected calendar 


My Nature

I love to be outside & especially when I have my camera in hand.  I was overly inspired the other brisk day here in Kansas so I grabbed Cali, my pup, my Canon with the larger lens, my stocking cap & some winter-like cheer.  I walked slowly & aimlessly, aimless only in the sense of oncoming cars & people, as I was captivated by just about everything.  It was one of those magical photo shoots- as they are not all this way!  My heart pounded as my fingers started to freeze.  I was in a race against the falling temperatures & the setting sun.  My dog was getting irritated at her very short leash, necessary so I could hold the camera (sort of) steady, long enough to get the shot. 

I was getting the feeling my neighbors thought I needed to be carefully observed with such a long lens- I did look a tad suspicious aiming the lens at stranger's windows.  This didn't stop me. . .it rarely does.  I remember one winter back in Milwaukee when I had stopped in my truck to snap a shot of a glorious, picturesque, winterized street & the owner of a house nearby followed me to my own house in his car where he sat, parking me in & waiting for me to emerge.  I was a little freaked so I stalled my exit- feeling less vulnerable on the inside my Land Rover.  Finally, I stepped out as the snow fell.  He proceeded to ask me what I was doing.  Me, I thought?  How about what are you doing, sir?  I live here, I informed the bloke.  He said he saw me taking pictures of his house & wondered if I was casing the joint. HA! Me?!  Casing him? I assured him I was not- that I was a photographer, simply taking pictures of 'his' street that was so beautifully blessed by nature. 

I returned home with a bushel full of photographs & a quieted spirit.  These are the results of that day:


A Heart Full of Art

If you have been wondering what I have been up to lately, other than consuming mass quantities of turkey & all the fixings, I have been trying to promote my artistic gifting by embarking on many creative endeavours.  My husband, Josh, & I have been upcycling (re-purposing) furniture that we've been finding on our town's inhabitant's curbs.  Josh does the more 'manly' parts of the process- sanding, fixing & rebuilding.  I get to do the more artistic side of things- chose paint colors, paint, find decorative nobs/pulls/handles & plan out all the design elements.  We are quite the match!  This has been a favorite pastime of ours- up next, we attempt to make a side table made out of an old tree stump.  Josh suggested we name this 'business' of ours, so on a drive home from Kansas City we brainstormed & came up with name, Last Evening Lark.  What do you think?  I love it! 

I have been so inspired lately & have been trying to channel that energy into something marketable (or at the very least helpful/inspiring).  So, when my sister-in-law, Marta, asked me to do a photo shoot of her adorable, growing family, I knew this was a chance to be creative & get my artistic hands dirty, once again.  We loaded up their van with the family, a camera & much cheer.  We went to an adorable tree farm as a backdrop for the shoot.  One small problem, it had finally gotten cold in Kansas & we were freezing!  That didn't stop us; on we went & at one point sweet little Adelaide wanted to take off her coat & run through rows of tiny, future Christmas trees.  It was the perfect opportunity for me to snap away, trying to get the ideal photograph.  She is so photogenic & beautiful, it wasn't too hard for me to succeed!  Here are a few of the results from that magical, frigid day.

Last Evening Lark (my new stage name) photo shoot, with my dear husband's family!

Photographs by: Last Evening Lark

Photographs by: Last Evening Lark

I have also been finding all sorts of fun online.  A cute shop I found out in CA, with an online catalog, is this whimsical shoppe, Henry Road.  It is a good one to make a Christmas wish list from!  You might know of this already but you can subscribe to magazines online for free! Check out the addicting site, Issuu.  You can view magazines such as this amazing copy of Anthology which happens to feature a favorite Swedish textile designer, mother & artist of mine, Lotta Jansdotter!!!  <---- Be sure to check her out...she is a.m.a.z.i.n.g.  In the online mag, she visits the lovely city of Stockholm & of course, shares neat finds along the way.  Here is an example of the gorgeous online magazine. 

From online Anthology Magazine issue #5
Photograph by: Giao Trac


I Shall Give Thanks: A Little Wedding Sampler

The day was perfect, the setting amazing.  Our wedding, that October 8th, 2011, took place amongst the rows of goldenrod cornfields in quaint Oakland, Iowa.  The sun outlined the surrounding farms that found their homes nestled between fields of crops & dancing wildflowers.  Birds came to this vast, open country to sing a cheerful tune, just as I had arrived in a similar fashion.  I would marry my one true love- Joshua.  As friends & family started to arrive our excitement multiplied.  How wonderfully blessed we felt as 3p.m. approached.  Here are a few of our wedding photos by these lovely gems, to wet your palates.  Keep watching for the rest.  And be sure to read Paper Antler's blog, featuring their photographs of our special day.  Happy Saturday!

I love wildflowers.

Sweet Adelaide, my niece.



A Birdy Told Me...

Yesterday, while I was stalking, I mean looking at Pinterest I came across the adorable bird mobiles first made famous by Michael Fulkerson.  Check out his brilliant designs at his Etsy site, ohmyeye & drool a little at where these might fit in your home.  I hadn't sewn in a while (practically since my 7th grade home-ec class) so I decided to try my hand at these birdies.  When the Spirit leads, follow... I found a free printable pattern with east-to-follow directions from the nice people at Spool & went to work, with my cute helper, Cali, sitting by to cheer me on!  Here are the results:

Fun fabrics.


Cali, my sweet helper!


Don't let her get this 'dog toy'...

Find him a nice home here...

...or maybe here?

 It was a huge success & really quite easy...& this is coming from novice sewer, me!  I had a blast expressing my creativity through the sewing machine.  This project got me thinking that it would be cool to spray paint branches from my backyard white & hang Christmas colored bird buddies from them for a jazzy holiday decoration.  Perhaps I will do that later today.  Keep an eye out here to see my holiday twist this craft, although I must say my perched guy up there already has a winter feel to him.  I like!


Our Wedding (Video)

Josh & I recently got married in Oakland, Iowa. It was an elegantly simple & beautifully autumn blessing of a day. I want to share this video, done by our wonderful photographers, Paper Antler with you all. It was such a wonderful day & we even had a rainbow make an appearance. Here is a glimpse of that October, 8th 2011:
heather + josh from paper antler on Vimeo.


An Artistic sort of week

My husband has been away (boo!) for work all week in rural western Kansas.  We're new here in town so I don't have many friends, but I did have a lot of free time to create & also to cook for one, me.  Today, I was inspired to make a collage, something I have been doing in my art studio lately.  What fun!  I had gone antiquing last week in Topeka at this fun shop: http://www.brickhouseantiqueshop.com/  & picked up some old postcards (from 1908!!!) & buttons along the way that I hoped to use in my work.  I love to explore thrift stores, flea markets & rummage sales with my art-making in mind.  I intentionally keep an eye out for random items I might be able to use. . .eventually!  I like to carry a bag of art/sewing supplies with me where ever I go so that I can work in random places when I have free time.  You never know where or when inspiration might strike. Here is my artistic process of my vintage finds implimented into a collage.  Enjoy!

First, I gathered some paper I enjoy & a flower I drew a long time ago with a watercolor scrap as the center.  Notice the picture postcard in the background- it is from the antique store.  If you look closely you can see the hand-written date; May 14, '08  & yes, that's 1908.  This is the collage in it's bare form.

Over the collage, quite accidentally, I laid this mesh fabric with the sewn antique buttons on it that make for some cute little tree flowers.  I found a mat I had laying around and cropped the image to my liking. 

It really turned out well & is a new favorite of mine.  I must go post this gem to my etsy site. xo

Here the framed finished product in my art studio!!  YAY!


This was SO easy to make I wanted to share (and dogs love it, too!).  The soup literally took less than 10 minutes, no joke! 


Sweet potato
S & P

Microwave a large sweet potato (after poking it with a fork to prevent exploding) for about 5 minutes or until soft.  Use leftover squash if you have it in your fridge (or cook one if you feel ambitious).  Scoop the sweet potato directly into a blender.  Add butter, cream & milk (or vegetable stock for a healthy version, if you prefer or are vegan).  Puree until smooth (adding more milk & cream if needed).  Warm on stove if need be & salt/pepper to taste.  I also added a smidge of fresh organic honey.  YUM!


As Autumn Approaches

 As Spring turned into summer and summer will soon turn to autumn, my heart is aglow at the thought of my own wedding, which is this October the 8th.  The magnolia blossoms welcomed me to the sunny days and blue skies that quickly turned hot and muggy.  I am going to welcome the fall temperatures and breezy days with open arms and an open heart. 

 I have finished making the sweet wedding invites.
A bird theme was used, along with some of my favorite colors; goldenrod, turquoise and blue.
They turned out great, but wow were they time consuming.  Pictures of the finished product, coming soon.  The latest creation is mini-canvas collages, with fun poppy colors and cityscapes for my bridal party.  They are so fun to make and are such a personal touch for my amazing girls. 

Now, I must go research and then again soon, create. Happy Saturday!