Hi friends, how was your weekend? We went to Santa Cruz this weekend to celebrate my birthday – I sipped some pretty pink drinks and hung out with squirrels, among other things ;) Pics coming up this laster this week. In the meantime, Easter is coming up so I though I’d get you and your little bunnies going with some fun DIYs – talking about bunnies, have you entered the giveaway yet? Happy Monday, friends!

1. Prettiest Easter eggs |2. Origami bunny treat box by Mini Eco. |3. Bunny wreath by The House that Lars Built. |4. Mr & Mrs Eggs  by Penelope & Pip.|5. Egg on a shelf by Mer Mag |6. Carrot cake in Sunde Soede Sager by Ditte Ingeman.

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And the winner is....

Ginormous flower bouquet by Paper & Stitch.

That’s right, today it’s my birthday, it’s my birthday, I’m gonna party like it’s my birthday. Well, I am gonna party like a pregnant lady really – that means putting my feet way up,  stuffing my face with loads of cake and reading my favorite magazine. I party hard core. Later today we’ll head down to Santa Cruz for a little family adventure. Anyway, since today is my day, I thought I’d share 20 things you (probably) don’t know about me. Why 20? Well, duh, don’t I look not a day older than when I turned 20?! ;)

1. Hubby and I got married only 9 months after we met. And 7 of those months we had been dating long distance between Ireland and New York. Talk about crazy young kids :) That was 6 years and (almost) 3 kids ago. And I still love him more and more every days that passes.

2. I dream of traveling to Iceland and Cuba. These two islands  have been on my mind for years now, but between all of our moves and babies, we just haven’t found the right time. But someday these trips will happen and they will be epic :) Have you ever been to any of these places?

3. I’ve tried to learn 7 languages in my life….and not sure I am speak of them well ;) French (of course), English, German in junior high and high school, Spanish (actually have a minor in Spanish but I can barely order my tacos right at the local taqueria. The shame of it), Danish after meeting my hubby, and I also took some Japanese and Russian classes when I was in college, you know, for the heck of it.

4. I am probably the most non-French French girl you’ll ever meet. I don’t smoke. I don’t drink coffee. I don’t go on strike – the glass is always half full to me. And I do shave my armpits ;) Haha but no kidding. It’s kinda strange to be raised in a country, know that it’s forever a part of you, that it fundamentally shaped who you are, but at the same time to feel like an outsider.

5. My birthday is 4/4, my older sister’s birthday is 7/7 so my parents were a bit disappointed when my younger brother was born 6/20. Come on, how cool would it have been to have three kids with birthdays of the same digits.

6. I don’t read too many novels because I get way too involved in the story and characters once I start reading a book I like. It’s like their life becomes part of mine, they become people I “know” and think about them all the time. It’s obsessive really, way to intense and consuming –  and I can’t get anything else done because all I want is finding it out what happens to them.

7. I’ve got a tattoo. A sun of the right side of my lower back. Hubby calls it the tramp stamp :) I got it when I was only 18 and probably wouldn’t get the same thing anymore. but at least since its’ in my back and I never see it, I just forget it’s there.

8. I am not a phone person. At all. I’ll email all day and night and don’t feel a bit shy to contact people I don’t know via email, but phone calls, forget it – super uncomfortable for me unless I am talking to my very best friends. And so I don’t check my phone regularly. And I’ll often run out of battery. And that drives my husband crazy!

9. I always want to be more. I have an amazing husband. Adorable little girls. A flexible (but super busy) schedule that always me to stay creative and still spend time with my kids. But a lot of times I feel I’m not doing enough, that there is more that I can do/be than what I’m doing right now. I am so happy with my life, but my brain can’t help it but keep looking up and above. Does that make sense?

10. If I could have a career redo, I’d want to study design and become a designer or interior decorator….they say it’s never too late?

11. I am just starting to come to terms with my freckles. You can’t tell on most of my pictures, but I have a LOT of them. Use to hate them – I guess mostly because as a kids I felt so different than anyone else. I love them on other people, just having a harder time liking them on myself ;)

12. I love skiing. Been a skier since I was a little girl and would give anything to be able to ski again. But I’ve already had 2 knee surgeries (due to a skiing accident), and it looks like I’ll have to have a third one in the future – so no slopes for me anymore!

13. I drink Earl Grey tea at home and Chai lattes at coffee shops. That’s it. Boring maybe, but oh do they hit the spot every time.

14. Somehow, part of me always knew, even as a child and when I hadn’t set a foot outside of France, that my children would grow up to speak more than one language.

15. I used to teach salsa dancing (Rueda de casino actually) when I was in college. Learning to dance salsa was probably one of the most fun things I ever did in my life – the music, the steps, the amazing people I met…sadly I haven’t danced in years now! Something’s gonna have to be done about that.

16. I’m one of the clumsiest person you’ll ever meet. I frequently run into glass doors, trip on steps and hit the corners of the furniture in our house. Among other things. I also forget things everywhere I do  - good thing my hubby and friends know me and always have my back ;)

17. I’ve lived 4 different countries (France, USA, Ireland and Denmark) and 4 different states (AZ, WA, NY and CA). I’ve moved about every year or two in the past 8 years. Mostly, that means I got really good at packing and unpacking, people :)

18. I live for dinner parties. I love having people over (or being invited!) and eat yummy food around our big table, while sipping on wine and having great conversations with friends late into the night. It’s something that French people do A LOT, and it sticked with me. When we lived in New York, our apartment was super duper tiny, but I had to have a table that could sit 8 people.

19. Gin and tonic kinda girl. Enough said.

20. I get real creative highs – who needs drugs when you’ve got hot glue guns?! ;) seriously though, I feel happiest, most relaxed and inspired when I’m creating things – and I can get completely lost in the creative process.

Now, what I would love from you, my dear readers, on my birthday – is a little comment. Tell me something fascinating about yourself. Tell me – what you are passionate about?! Where do you dream of going on vacation? It would make my day to read a little bit about you :)

PS: oh – and don’t forget to enter the giveaway here!

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Happy Wednesday, friends! How about a little giveaway today – it’s been a while, right?! Today Molly of Little Goodall is giving away one of her super-duper cute bunny jacket (value $149) to celebrate the release of her Spring collection! I mean, can you imagine the cuteness of your little one wearing this adorable coat as he/she goes on Easter egg hunting. To die for, right?! More details on the giveaway below.

I’ve been a fan of Molly’s work for years now – every since I bought Olivia’s lion jacket-, the quality and details of her work are simply amazing. And I love everything about the new collection. All of her jackets are adorable (not a surprise there!), and I love all of the Spring dresses and little sunsuits that she added for little girls. I want to get this pink ruffled sunsuit for Madeline to wear at the beach this summer :)

So, how’s dying to get their hands on this pretty little bunny coat?

The winner will have the choice between the coat in Champagne/pink or Camel/blue, size 12m to 6. Enter in the Rafflecopter below – you’ve got 20 chances to win total! This giveaway is open to people WORLDWIDE and will be open until 04/09/14 at 11:49pm. The winner will be contacted via email within 48 hours after the end of the giveaway – so make sure to leave a valid email address!  Good luck, friends ;)

a Rafflecopter giveaway

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One thing I can NEVER get enough off around the house are pillows – they’re everywhere! On our couch, on our bed, in the girls bedroom, in our reading nook…our bathroom is probably the only room that’s pillow-less - I need to fix that ;) In any case, I just found these lovely pillows by Menina Lisboa and simply love their cheerfulness. I showed you guys one of them last week in my nursery inspiration board, but wanted to share more of my favorites today with you all. They’re simply too pretty, and shall I say, quite perfect for Spring! Check out the Menina Lisboa store here.

PS: More pillow love.

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Happy Monday, friends! Sending a little sunshine your way with this color inspiration in shades of yellow and orange to start the week – actually, we could use some sun ourselves since it’s raining today! But hey, who am I to complain :) We had a lovely weekend. I finished some of these books, and took a sewing class yesterday -hopeful that someday I can sew more than just pillow cases, one can dream ;) - while Troels took the girls crab fishing for the first time…they caught two, so proud! Did you guys do anything fun? Have a lovely week, friends!

Images: 1.| 2.| 3.| 4.| 5.| 6.

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My little Madeline,

You are my little one. For another couple of months, you’re going to be my little one and I am going to enjoy these couple of months with my tiny Madeline as much as I can. But oh, how big you are already, everyday you are showing me how strong and amazing you are. I often expect you to be able to do the same as your sister, even though you are younger, but I know you can and I know you’re eager to be that big girl. Last year and the year before I wrote down 10 things I loved about you then, and there we go again – 10 things I absolutely love about you right now, little girl:

1. The thousands shades of red and strawberry blond in your hairs. Your my little lion. Especially when you refuse to brush your little mane before going to school ;) Although you’ll  let me, every now and then, put your hair up in “a piggy and a little bad wolf”  - that’s how you call pig tails :) I hope that you never loose that red out of your hair.

2. The tiny little freckles that continue to show up, one by one, on your nose and cheeks. You only have a few, but I love to look at them when  you’re taking your afternoon nap.

3. Your hugs. and how much love you give with them. You were already the best hugger when you were 5 months old, and that really hasn’t changed much. I hug you tight at night, but you hug me even tighter. Like, you are the one teaching me how it’s done :) You often ask to come snuggle with mama in my bed before you go to sleep, and while we’re laying down next to each other you’ll often take my face between your tiny little hands, look straight into my eyes with your pretty blue eyes. and start kissing my head from my forehead to my chin. And then you start giggling because you think it’s so funny :)

4. Your acting skills. Girl, you can pull off a mean Big Bad Wolf and scared Little Piggies like nobody else I know ;) We’ve got to read this story to you almost every night.

5. How little you are, but how you are so aware of the things and people around you! You’re a smart little cookie. You ask questions, tons of them – like “how will the baby get out mama?” Ha, yes, about that….;) You’re always processing info and thinking. Oh, and you hardly mix the three languages that you’re learning when you speak with daddy and me, but with your sister you’ll adapt and speak perfect franishglish with her, because you know that’s what she does. I don’t know how to know the things that you know, but somehow you just do.

6. your little voice when you sing. You’ll take your guitar with you, and try to be right on pitch< and it’s oooh so cute how you put your whole heart into it :) Your favorite song to sing right now? “Do you hear the people sing” from the movie Les Miserables. Don’t ask me why, a few weeks ago you came to me and told me “Mama, it’s my favorite song”. The little rebellious French girl in you, perhaps?

7. That you always want to do things and explore! While your sister tends to be a bit more of a homebody sometimes, you barely have time to ask you if you want to come to something with us that your Kitty shoes (your crocs with Hello Kitty on) are already on your feet and your reaching out for these huge sunglasses of yours. You were born ready to go on adventures :)

8. Your sense of humor. You’ll often change words in a song just to be funny, or make a joke on me to see how I’ll react to it :) And you have the most mischievous smile on when you know you’re being funny.

9. How much you care for others. If I am having a bad day you’ll come and give me a hug. If you get a snack for yourself, you’ll always ask that I give you one for your sister too because you know she’ll want one. When we talk about your baby sister and that she’ll cry sometimes, you say you’ll give her kisses and share your toys with her.

10. the sum of you – that you are so uniquely you.  Every new thing we find out about you is so different. Your red hair and blue eyes, your little freckles, your strong personality, your sense of humor….and now we know, you’re a leftie on top of it :) Before you were born I somehow thought that you and Olivia would be very similar, because I looked like my own sister so much and everybody always compared us. But no, you are your very own, amazing little thin. We secretly call you our four leaf clover. Keep being yourself, little girl, because everybody else is taken anyway. 

You are my sunshine, and I’ll keep hugging you tight forever and ever.

Love,

Mama

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Image by Tara Whitney.

You guys, I am in such a nesting frenzy that yesterday I pulled a muscle in my lower back while cleaning and moving things around. Hurst so bad, hubby had to help me walk to bed last night. Time for this mama to take a chill pill, apparently…but not before I finish our little girl’s nursery corner ;) I shared my nursery inspiration with you a few weeks ago, so today I thought I’d show how my moodboard is progressing. I absolutely adore the picture above by Tara Whitney that I shared a couple years ago when I started the blog. It’s all about summer and not taking ourselves too seriously. And I love the colors too of course. So I used this picture to draw more inspiration for the nursery, and here is what I have now. I am still unsure how much yellow I am going to use – but tell me if you like it :)

1. Max Wanger ice cream photograph: I am a big fan of Max Wanger’s work, and this Ice Cream picture would be so sweet in the nursery. Love the simplicity of it.

2. Thick turquoise curtains: Yes, thick curtains, friends, because we’re going to need to make this room dark for the babe when we need to – mama likes her sleep you see, and that only happens if baby is sleeping :) I found this thick curtains at Ikea with a nice velvety feel, and I am pairing them with lighter white curtains when we need a bit more light in the room but still get privacy. Sanel curtains at IKEA.

3. Gold mushroom lamp: OK, so mushroom aren’t exactly your typical summer vegetable – but this Egmont lamp reminds me of a walk in the woods, one of my favorite thing to do in the summer :) At Pop-Line.

4. Muuto wall hooks: I’ve been eyeing at these fun wall hooks for a long time – they are both practical and decorative. At Smallable.

5. White modern crib: Love the look (and reasonable price) of the Babyletto Hudson crib. Modern look, clean lines, it’s also made from sustainable wood and converts into a toddler bed for when she grows up. Perfect!

6. Don’t grow up print: A nice reminder for her – and for us parents too :) Sadly I can’t find this Mini and Maximus print anywhere, I think it went out of print. Do I smell a little DIY art here?

7. Dipped stool: Stools are so fun and versatile – and I love this dipped version in mint. Out of my price range, but love the idea and the pop of color! At Crate Expectations.

8. Heart pillow: How sweet is this little pillow? And in my opinion, one can never put too many hearts in a baby nursery ;) By Menina Lisboa.

9. Mid-century rocking chair: As I mention in my last post, our nursery is actually just a corner of our main bedroom – so space is of the essence. This rocker looks great, it also doesn’t break the bank and it’s small enough that it won’t take up too much space.

10. Fuzzy rug: because maybe, maybe it won’t be as hard to get up for night time feedings if my feet can feel something soft under them :) Thinking about DIYing this one to save up!

11. Large floor bin: cute storage is always a bin. This could hold our laundry, or maybe we’ll use it for toys as she grows up. By Ferm Living.

12. White dresser: one that can also double-serve as changing station. Sadly, this won’t fit into our room – but how I wish! Ikea Stockholm sideboard.

13. Cloud pillow: A little extra sweetness for this little girl :) By Blabla Kids.

14. Pretty crib sheets: I am going for simplified bedding with this nursery. No bumper, instead I am spending more money on super fun crib sheets so I can change up the look! Will share more on where I get my sheets soon.

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L: English home via Ikea Family | R: Rainbow whole fruit ice pop by 84th and 3rd.

Today I wanted to share this English home with you – not your typical British cottage with tea and crumpets served in pretty china :) It’s the home of one of my favorite illustrators, Jane Foster, and when I saw that pretty yellow Smeg fridge, well friends, that was the end of me. This space feels so bright and fresh! You can tell that it’s not that big, but they made the most out of the space they’ve got with pretty storage. Quite a few IKEA pieces in this home but they blend in so well with the other pieces of furniture and accents  - uncluding Jane’s colorful work.

And if I lived there, I am pretty sure I’d be stuffing myself with these rainbow whole fruit popsicles by 84th and 3rd. These would start a riot in our house, pretty sure about that! The colors are so vibrant, and I am sure they taste just as amazing. I want to try the honeydew, lime and mint one, and also the spiced plum and black cherry, and… Which one would you go for? Find out how to make these on 84th and 3rd!

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Happy Monday, friends! A little “color” inspiration post all in white, for once :) We used to have so much white in our New York apartment, and since we moved to California I really miss having so much white in my home. The home we’re currently renting in Berkeley is absolutely beautiful, but it is an old craftsman house and there’s a lot of wood in every room – loads and loads of it. The walls are also painted all shades of light beige, grey and pale yellow. My hand is itching to grab a paintbrush and go white crazy – give this house a clean slate. But wondering if that’s worth it since we won’t be here forever, painting can be so expensive! So I have trying to find over ways to add white. What about you – does your home have a lot of white? Do you crave it too?

Images: 1.| 2.| 3.| 4.| 5.| 6.

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My sweet little Olivia,

Almost a year since I last put down in words how amazing it is to have you as my little girl. How in the world did I get so lucky? I like to pretend that I am writing this letter to you, my little love, but really, I am writing it for myself because you are growing ever so fast and I don’t want to forget a thing. So, here are the 10 things that I love so so much about you right now, Olivia:

1. The way to draw and paint the world. You get lost into the things you make, and the more you grow up the more I see myself in you. Your imagination is as big as the sky! Quite frankly, I often get lost just watching you draw and paint. You’re every bit of the creative girl – having paint on your fingers is probably the best thing that can happen to you any day of the week :) The other on our way to gym class I said “Oh sorry we forgot to wash the paint on your hands, should we do it when we get there?” and you replied with a big smile on your face “No, I like my hands like this“. :)

2, How thirsty you are for stories- whether we make them up or read them to you. Every morning on our way to school, you’ll ask me: “Mama, can you tell me the story of…” And I happily tell these stories to you, over and over again.

3. Your tiny tiny braids. Your hair’s been growing so slowly (I’ve only cut it twice 3 times in your whole life), but you like to pretend you are a princess from Frozen wearing some of those gorgeous scandinavian braids -so we braid your hair, pretty much every day. It’s probably my favorite part of getting you ready in the morning :)

4. How much you love the water. And I mean, I think you must have been a fish or a dolphin in a previous life ;) Your favorite book right now is Manfish, a story about the life of explorer Jacques Cousteau, and you ask me to read it just about every night. 10 times in a row :) You often scream “dyggemaske” (diving mask!) and jump around the house as if you were stepping in the ocean.

5. You are always ever so happy. EVER. SO. HAPPY. And one thing you’ll realize with time little girl, is that it is contagious and rubs off on people – so don’t you dare ever loosing that side of you. You always make our bad days so so much better with your smiles and hugs.

6. the way you shake your little bootie when you dance – guess those ballet classes are paying off after all ;) It is so cute, and you’re always trying new move. But be aware, Daddy’s watching you though, making sure the bootie shaking doesn’t go overboard :)

7. You are the most social child I’ve ever seen. You are always looking to make new friends, asking when we’ll have play dates, and you sure aren’t afraid of talking to people you don’t know. Oh, and you love an audience. A few weeks ago we were watching the Olympic Games on TV, and you said: “When I am big, can I snowboard too?“, directly followed by “Can people come and watch me?“. Haha, well yes of course.

8. Our little walks together. Once a week you and I walk alone from your school to Madeline’s school, and I cherish that precious time alone with you so so much under the sun, checking out whatever comes our way. The way you look at the world never stops to amaze me!

9. You are just so amazingly sweet. You prepare “parties” for daddy and me and will “decorate” your whole room for us. You’ll stop halfway through your breakfast and say something like “mama, did you buy this dress for me?“, and when I say yes you reply with sparkly eyes: “Oh thanks you so much mama cherie!“. If I come pick you up from school and decided to put on a little lipstick, you’ll pull me close, put your hands on my cheeks and say: “mama, I love your lips – you’re so pretty!

10. Seeing you turning into such wonderful big sister. You take such good care of Madeline already – whenever she’s gone you keep asking for her. You girls play “mama” together, you dance around the living room together, you create new stories with your princesses together. I can’t wait to see what an amazing big sister you’re going to be with your other baby sister when she arrives in May.

Keep on dreaming and dancing and loving the world, little girls. I love you to the moon and back. If not more.

You mama.

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