An Elfy Giveaway!

I had such a fantastic run this year with selling my peg dolls that I thought I’d give some away today. A small token of thanks for everyone who’s supported me through buying, words of wisdom, words of encouragement and just being present in my life. I thank you all!! I have a little trio of elves to give away to one lucky winner. Just leave a comment on the blog. You are welcome to share this giveaway on Instagram and Facebook too (but it’s certainly not required to win)! These little peg elves stand 1′ high (they are tiny). They are hand painted with non toxic watercolors and can be finished with an all natural beeswax and jojoba oil rub or sealed with a non toxic sealant (winner’s choice). Their eyes are wood burned on. The winner will be announced on Wednesday the 17th, so come back here to find out!!

****GIVEAWAY CLOSED**** CHOSEN THROUGH THE RANDOM GENERATOR- THE WINNER IS KIM (mothering with mindfulness) !!!! Kim, I’ll be emailing you shortly to get your address, so we can hopefully get your little peg elves out before Christmas! Thank you everyone for all your kind words. I’m sure I will be doing another Peg giveaway soon!

giveaway stocking caps Happy Holidays!!! xoxo, Summer


This weekend was slow and steady. Not too many plans. I wasn’t feeling all that well, so we tried to take it easy. Lots of good Christmas books, crafting, watching some harbor fireworks from our bedroom window, some late night Christmas movies and a walk through a new favorite park to get some fresh air (where we found mushrooms and rocks and swung on swings, met a horse named Charlie and walked along a fallen pine tree that smelled like Christmas).

walking through

the staff

nature girl

dada and elle

winter sky

the basin


little girl



cool mushroom city

mama and me

this kid

this beauty

charlie horse

ta da

in the stump

Hoping you all had a wonderful weekend and wishing you a delightful week!!

Portrait Project


eloise: it doesn’t rain much in California, so when it did, we spent the majority of our time outside, in it. You were happy as a clam with your new rain boots and rain coat, stomping around in puddles and not caring one bit that your hair was getting wet or your hands were ice-cold. I had to drag you inside kicking and screaming. You’ve spent the past few days singing “rain, rain go away”, but I kind of think you’d like it to keep on raining.

-joining Jodi for 2 more weeks (eek! only two more weeks left!) for the 52 project!

What We’re Reading

library books

We have been reading a lot these days. The shorter days make it harder to stay outside too late and cuddling up with good, holiday books has been a nice alternative. Every week we pick up several holiday books at the library (see above for this week’s finds). And this year (because of my preschool teacher stockpile of books), we are doing a new Holiday/winter book every evening. I keep those books under the tree in a basket.

book gnome books

I’ll admit, I have a thing for children’s books and holiday titles especially, so I have picked up a couple new ones (or gently used) a long the way too. But this way, we will always have a big basket of books to bring out every  year and what a lovely tradition that is. These are the books we have read so far. The Snowman has been a favorite as well as Tracks in the Snow and The Christmas Wish (a lovely photographic journey with a little girl who wants to be an elf).

I’ve also picked up a few for when Ellie’s older. One in particular I’m thrilled about. A gently used copy of Sendak’s version of The Nutcracker. I’m a sucker for anything Sendak. And of course, when a great book comes along, I tend to get inspired and want to create peg dolls to go with it.
peg dolls

book gnome
What are your favorite holiday reads?

Happy Winter Things

winter old man

I love the change in winter, when the nature table changes from yellows and oranges to wintery blues and Christmas colors. I love bringing out the Christmas decorations and adding to them a little bit every year.
(This gorgeous Father Winter is by Tansydolls).
I recently finished Ellie’s “Winter playmat” and couldn’t wait till Christmas to give it to her. Months ago, I had bartered with another amazing crafter for her wooden Inuit set. I made her several playmats in exchange for these beautiful toys. I love that about the online community I am a part of, that trading for goods is something that’s done often. (Her etsy store is here, if you’d like to check out more of her beautiful toys).

eskimo set

peg dolls
peg dolls galore

I’m loving all this peg doll love. I’m getting so many orders and painting during Ellie’s nap time has become quite meditative. Thank you to everyone who have bought peg dolls. I’m thrilled so many people like them.


The Advent calendar from last year is finally hung up and getting used! Every morning, Ellie finds the next ornament and hangs it up on a button. And then we sing the song, “Five gold rings, four calling birds, three french hens, two turtle doves and a partridge in a pear tree…”. It’s been a hit so far!
xmas lights
Christmas lights are hung and the holiday cards are starting to trickle in. They are a joy to receive.
christmas books

This year we decided to have the “Christmas book gnome” bring Ellie a book every night before Christmas. He leaves it in this basket under the tree. (Being a preschool teacher for so many years, I have a stockpile of winter/Christmas books and I thought, what fun to wrap each one for her this year). Next year, we will only get one new Christmas book to add to the basket, maybe on the first of December.
winter soups

WInter means soups, stews and more soups! This is one of Jeff’s homemade leftover turkey vegetable soup. It was delicious! I love this time of year when new recipes can be tried out to warm us up.


Our orange tree is ripe with fruit and our neighbor’s mandarin tree is plentiful too. The smell of citrus is always a wintery smell for me and even more so since living in a house with an orange tree.

We have our record player crooning Tony Bennett and The Carpenters throughout the day and Vince Guarldi in the evenings. Our days have been nice, with bits of holiday fun thrown into our every day routine. Ellie and I are taking a dance class together (more like a music and movement class), with friends and we’re enjoying taking night walks with the flashlight after dinner too (especially since this little one’s bedtime keeps getting later and later…). It’s supposed to rain again later this week, so we’re gearing up for the cooler weather. There may just be some puddle jumping in our future.
Happy week to you!!

Weekending: Magic Dragon Edition

I’m about to photo bomb you with magical pictures of my daughter. I can’t help it. It was so much fun taking so many photos and too hard to narrow it down to only a few, so I’m including… a lot….Just to warn you. Our weekend was a nice and easy one. Visits to the coffee shop and post office. Pancakes in the morning, visits with grandma and grandpa and friends.  It just so happened that on Friday at a play date, Ellie had tried on her friend’s very special dragon wings and tail and loved them so much that I asked my friend where she had gotten them. I was told they were handmade by a local artisan. Well, as we were downtown sending things off at the post office, we literally stumbled onto a holiday craft faire where the exact same dragon wings and tail were purchased! It was fate!  Jeff gave the go ahead for Ellie to pick out and take her very own set home. Ellie was completely transformed as soon as she put the dragon wings and tail on. She took off running down the avenue shouting, “I’m a dragon!” It was quite the sight. Later that afternoon we went back downtown with my parents. They had a live music event where they had shut the main streets down. Ellie danced her way through the town, still dawning her dragon suit. She captured everyone’s attention (even getting on the main screens at the music event). We danced our way down to the beach for a walk before dinner and Ellie enjoyed dancing in the puddles and chasing her Grandparents and Jeff and I enjoyed snapping photos and enjoying the magic that is our daughter.
dragon dance


shes a star







sunlight too




see you

dragon light

dragon tale




catch me

mama catch you


-joining Pumpkin SUnrise