December 31, 2010


Is it just me, or does anyone else have great difficulty setting goals for a new year? I am inherently quite hard on myself, both personally and professionally. Thus, I hesitate to put goals down in stone, for fear that if I do not complete them, I will be ridden with personal guilt for not hitting the mark.

Perhaps if I were to make 1 single goal for 2011, it would be to not be so hard on myself. Give myself enough grace to make mistakes, and to not dwell on the past so much. I often let my shortcomings haunt me like ghosts.

Not surprisingly,  my feelings of personal guilt go hand in hand with my inability to control all aspects of my life. Yes, I said it, I am a total control freak. I wake up and have every minute of my day planned out. Sometimes I can't roll with the punches. Like, say, if on my only day to myself over Christmas Break, I wake up with a fever and a throat infection. So instead of spray painting my daughter's bed and working on the bathroom, I am lay in bed, thinking about all of the things that I had planned on accomplishing (as I am shivering with fever chills and a pounding headache).

If I could rewind back to that sick day, perhaps I would realize that my body was forcing me to slow down! I would try to sit still. I've heard that taking naps during the day is actually relaxing.... maybe I should have tried to take one? Who knows... but I think that my patterns are becoming unhealthy, and I need to break them, if not for me, than for my daughter, so that I can set a healthy example for Violet.

It is okay if my business does not grow as fast as I want it to, because I know that I am constantly working and trying to learn how to make better decisions. All you can do is your best, right?

It is okay that Nathan and I will need to wait to have more children until he completes his Ph.D. program, no matter how much I desire for my family to grow. I must remind myself that this family is not just me, but Nathan and Violet. What is best for Nathan is for him the room he needs to finish his degree with confidence. And let's be honest, I ADORE the time I get to spend with Miss Violet as mother and child. I will blink and she will be 30! Yikes!

So here's to a new year. 365 days of personal growth. Another day to wake up and strive to be a better version of myself.

I will allow myself to make mistakes. I will push myself to make more friends here in friendly old Arkansas (maybe?). I will cherish the present, but always hold the dream of my family's future in my heart.

2010. My heart is humbly thankful for all that you brought my way.

mind your music: kate nash

First, I must say this - I hate pop music. No judgment upon those who listen to it, but the bright bouncy sound and repetitive vapid lyrics overwhelm me with a wash of sickly sweet. And I must escape it. That being said, I have to now admit ... I cannot quit listening to Kate Nash.


Who Is She: Forget Katy Perry. Cast aside images of Natasha Beddingfield. This is Kate Nash. And she's nothing like them. Irish born and London bred, Kate is a precocious 23 whose girlish grit is catchy and shockingly smart. She's a bullet - centered gob stopper and her own brand of glittery kitsch. Her English accent bleeds through every song and I love it.

Favorite Song: From the clever beats of "Skeleton Song" to the cheeky "I've Got A Secret", both her albums are a treat. And the shatteringly blunt and beautiful slam poem that opens "Mansion Song" never ceases to give me goosebumps. Her irreverance isn't flakey and her feminine wit doesn't feel like fluff. It's a fine line, and she lights it on fire.

Pumpkin Soup

Makes Me Think Of/Feels Like: 1960s bee hives and knee socks, Topshop, and everything English.

Illustrations by the brilliant Nikki Farquharson (a graduate of my future university!).

Kate Nash made me a believer in pop music ... and strangely enough, proud to put on some eyeliner and be a real girl. It's pretty awesome.

- Jenna

December 29, 2010

Violet's Nursery is on Ohdeedoh today

Yippee! Violet's nursery is on Ohdeedoh today! Check out the post here and be sure to leave a comment!

Sigh, the days of cribs..... I miss them so!


December 28, 2010

Fabric Dilemma

Now that V is in her toddler bed, I need to make her a nice little duvet cover that compliments her bed skirt. I ordered this vintage striped sheet from Etsy, but now realize that the colors might not mesh as well as I had hoped.

I want to dye over the sheet to change the white to a more off white, and in doing so slightly darken the pinks in the sheet. But how do I do this? I know that I have read about dying over patterned fabric in the past, but cannot for the life of me find any tutorials online!

Should I use a tea to lightly change the color? I do have plenty of fabric to test this method out a bit.

I am also going to spray paint Violet's toddler bed. It was given to us by my sweet sister-in-law, and she has given me her blessing to do with it what I want.

I am leaning towards a deeper blue or a green. But I am open to other colors.... oh my indecisive mind!

So what do you guys think? Can you recommend any great dying techniques or DIY's? Which paint color for the bed?


December 27, 2010

the bathroom facelift: gone fishing

I'll be back next week with the next series in the Bathroom Facelift. I've done quite a bit of work, but alas, do not have my camera cord with me to download the pictures!


December 24, 2010

good morning from violet

Good Morning from Miss Bed Head Violet.

She is definitely my goofy kid. Love her to bits!

Have a great day getting ready for Christmas,
Stacie and Violet

December 22, 2010

sock puppets

Violet has always loved hand puppets. Nathan and Violet often spend afternoons coloring their hands with Sharpie faces and talking in funny voices to one another. So it should come as no surprise that Violet has now taken to putting her socks on her hands and using them as puppets!

My little girl is definitely 2 years old now. She throws a mighty temper tantrum, yet still wants to be babied. I know that 2 is a rough age, but I think it is really hard for her because she is only just learning to communicate, and sometimes she cannot find the right words. So she gets a little bit mad. Regardless, I feel like I have more patience than I have ever had in my life!

Thank goodness I am 24. Otherwise I might not be able to keep up!


December 20, 2010

office gifts: pumpkin chocolate chip cookies

Over the weekend I finally got up the courage to do some baking. I have not cooked anything in quite a while. But I love cooking, so it did not take long for me to get my apron out and get my cook on!

I had stumbled upon this recipe for Chocolate Chip Pumpkin Cookies on Catherine Campbell's blog, and knew that they would make great holiday gifts for my office friends. Added bonus, I had a bunch of mason jars just waiting to be used as fun gift containers.

Since I really could not venture out to go shopping for ribbon to decorate the mason jars, I kept it simple with a swatch of fabric on top and a dainty bow of yarn around the lid. Filled inside with 4 scrumptious cookies. I have to make more for the rest of my office (I ran out of mason jars!)

I love giving gifts. I love that some people really appreciate the handmade touch.

Do you ever find with your own family handmade is not seen as special? I am not saying that is the case with my own family, but I can see how difficult it could be for the handmade community during holidays to give lovingly handcrafted items and have them not hold up in the eyes of the recipient. You know, since there are people out there who still think that handmade = a popsicle ornament.

The value of time is underestimated. Lovingly baking Christmas cookies and sharing them with the one's you cherish could be gift enough for me this year.

But I won't look a gift horse in the mouth, say, if the gift horse is bringing me Season 1 of Glee on DVD....

December 19, 2010

the bathroom facelift: demolition

This week I got quite a bit done in the old bathroom. 

First I removed all of the old handles from the cabinets (the cabinets are staying because I am not about to try and retrofit this odd little stall with storage and new counter tops). I cannot wait to go shopping for new handles! 

If I had the money, I would purchase these from Anthropologie, but we will see what I can afford when push comes to shove!

Next came the fun part of ripping the old tile off of the walls. At first it was smooth sailing, as the tile had been applied over the original plaid wallpaper. However, about half way down the tiled part of the wall I found that the tile was glued directly to the drywall. I attempted to leave the tile around he shower door intact for the time being, but accidentally knocked one green tile off. I can re glue it if I need too!

Look at my awesome tile up close! Now can you see the nasty brown speckles? I cannot wait to brighten up this bathroom!

In all (including clean up) it took me about 2 hours to remove the tile. I still have to remove the tile around the toilet area, but that will have to wait until after Christmas. I've started looking at paint colors, mirrors, etc. But in all honesty, I am not sure which direction to go. So far we have not spent a dime, which makes me happy! We will see how far we can stretch our money from here on out!


December 18, 2010

magazines for christmas

 No matter how much I adore online magazines, I still miss flipping through a paper magazine while sipping coffee. So this year I am asking for magazines for Christmas! The 4 above are my personal wish list, and all are pretty affordable too!

On a different note, sorry that I have been so quiet this week. I've had a tough couple of days personally. Conflict is difficult, and sometimes I simply shut down in order to process. Rest assured, most everything has been resolved, but I feel uninspired now. I am going to try to refocus, because I definitely want to start out the new year feeling strong. I want to feel like I can be successful on my own terms.

Thanks so much for your support, friends.


December 15, 2010

I have been working on setting up a more "professional" website for myself. You all have seen the blog redesign, which I rather like! Now I wanted to show you which will now be listed on all of my business cards and correspondence. This way all of my projects will be under the blanket of my name, Stacie Bloomfield, with links to the shop (Gingiber) the blog (GingiberSnap) and my portfolio (which is still under construction as I attempt to learn some more savvy html codes for better presentation).

Let me know what you all think! I've been working like a mad woman trying to up my game. My number 1 goal for 2011 is to make Gingiber into a full time gig. I have felt such encouragement over the past few months from all of you and from my family. I want to make my dreams a reality. Who wouldn't want to be fulfilled doing something that they love? 

Now, I must note that I am incredibly grateful for my day job (from which I am staying home from work today, because Violet has Pink Eye). However, I find that I am most happy when I am drawing and doodling my little heart away. So no matter what, I will give 100% during the day at the university, but I devote as much time as humanly possibly to Gingiber.

I recently read a fantastic blog post from Maggie over at GussySews. Wow, the girl has mad skills, not just as an artist, but her business sense is off the wall crazy good! She is like a sponge, absorbing all of the great tips and tricks available and then putting them into practice in her own business! Anyways, back to the blog post, Maggie talks about Etsy vs. Big Cartel as a venue for an online shop. Now she really has me thinking about the future of my etsy shop and if I should think about changing things up a bit! Etsy has been so good to me, but in order to continue to grow as a brand, I might need to "cut the cord" and explore other opportunities. 

Enough rambling! 

Thank you all, my sweet friends, for being with me every step of the way. I value your opinion, and am so happy to be a part of an encouraging community.


December 13, 2010

mind your music: DM Stith

About two months ago, I had the privilege of seeing Sufjan Stevens live in a beautiful old theatre. Anticipation was humming and there was overjoyed applause as a spotlight came on in the center of the stage. The audience was caught off guard when in the drench of light was not Sufjan Stevens - but a small, fair haired man alone with his guitar. People began to mutter and I wondered how on earth one lone person could open for so judgmental and impatient a crowd.

And then he began to sing.

Morning Glory Cloud

Who Is He: Upstate New Yorker David Stith was born musical, with a pianist mother, choir director father, and opera singing sisters. His harmonies and lyrics recently caught the attention of Sufjan Stevens who signed him to Asthmatic Kitty Records as well as made him a member of his band for the Age of Adz tour. However I must admit, DM Stith's looping vocal tracks and moss covered melodies is what stole my heart that night I saw him play.

Favorite Song: He has several EPs, but his full length album Heavy Ghosts has so many haunting tracks it's hard to pick just one. Stith is part Simon & Garfunkel, part Sleepy Hollow, and all earthy eerie-ness (is that even a word?). He's a gust of cold winter and northern lights over the soul.

Thanksgiving Moon

Makes Me Think Of/Feel Like: Nick Drake, colonial ghost stories, lights dancing through wet window panes, and musty letters hidden away from you and me.

The ethereal Janelle Dry, the Incredible Tree Project by Eibatova Karina (please view), and the glorious Lissy Elle

It's rare to find a voice so very unique. Drink it in like a warm cider - you'll love it I'm sure.
- Jenna

*Jenna is back after a brief hiatus from writing the ever-loved "Mind Your Music" posts. She is my ever inspiration for all things awesome. Be sure to check out her previous posts here.*

December 12, 2010

bathroom facelift: in the beginning

In the beginning, sometime during the 1960's, my house was built. Specifically, a bathroom was decorated. And it was bad. Very bad. The color avocado and Formica counter tops abounded.  Wall to wall mirrors and speckled tile were joined together to create the perfect storm of enclosed chaos. Egg shaped brass chandeliers. Laminate Flooring. No windows. No way to escape the bad layout of the corner sink and cave-like shower. It was, and to this day, is bad.

As you can tell from the photos, we've been using it as a storage area. The shower had been holding boxes of Violet's old clothes. Various cleaning products here and there. But seriously, the bathroom is so dirty and gross I never wanted to tackle it until now. Where to start?

The first thing we did? Take down those awful lighting fixture and remove the mirrors.

This revealed the home's original plaid wall paper. Attractive? Not really. But now the color combo of pea green, avocado green, and tan speckled tiles with a golden flaked counter-tops kinda makes sense..... maybe? Moving on.

Fortunately, the wallpaper peeled off like a dream! Now we are down to the original drywall.

We are really thinking about what our next move should be. We have no master plan yet. We had contemplated painting the existing tile, but have heard mixed views on the results. Plus, the mirrors were installed lower than the rest of the tile, so there is a huge dip in the tile work. Now we are thinking about ripping down the tile (save the tile in the shower itself) and putting up some affordable bead boards. At some point the cabinets were painted white, and they will stay that way. Working around the corner sink and the countertops? Not sure yet!

Until next week....