Thursday, November 26, 2015


Each year I feel like the span of time between holiday seasons gets shorter and shorter. I mean, I'm definitely a holiday centric girl, and I've got holidays on the brain all year round...that goes without saying. 
I count life experience by how many Christmas trees you've had so far. And I remind myself that life is short by estimating how many more Christmas trees we're gonna have. Yeah, I talk sorta like how Native Americans tell campfire stories in the movies "Many moons ago..."  
But my version is "Many Christmas trees ago..." ha!
For me Thanksgiving, Christmas, and New Years are basically all one entity. It's the time of year to celebrate our family, our friends...our Chihuahuas.
As far as family goes I've got a ton to be thankful for. My sister and brothers' lives are expanding...there are engagements, new houses and apartments, a new baby on the way...
And I talk with my mom more than ever. And me and Aaron spend so so much time with his dad Skip.
Also, every year at Thanksgiving I try to make a mental list of everything that I have gained in the preceding year. This year I'm especially aware of my friendships that have grown deeper and stronger. Friendships that mean the world to me. 
Me and Aaron live a life that is fairly isolated in the physical sense...we work from home (a whole lot!) and we don't go out much. But at the same time we are connected to so so many people, and we have real deal relationships despite being separated by a whole lotta geography.
Human connection makes the world go round. And I'm so thankful for each and every friend I have. 
It's so great that me and Aaron get to make this art that we make. Its so great that so many people are touched by what we do. The feedback we get is tremendous. We could blush for days over the sweetness that comes our way.

Thanks to all of you for sticking by us through the years. Your friendship is the best gift we could ever receive. We hope that you and yours...friends near and far, have an amazing Thanksgiving.
You are such a big part of ours!

xo, Jenny & Aaron

Monday, November 23, 2015

Adding some Christmas, a little bit at a time....and a Jackson & Perkins giveaway! (GIVEAWAY CLOSED)

*Giveaway CLOSED. Thank you SO SO much to all that entered!! We LOVED reading about your favorite decorations and traditions! 

The Winner is Laurie Duncan! Please email us. xo

It seems everyone is ready for Christmas earlier than ever before. On my Facebook, and Instagram feeds I'm seeing so many friends putting up trees, hanging stockings, creating vignettes, and just totally getting a running start on the holidays. 
I get where the traditionalists are coming from when they say "too soon." But life is short and the holiday season usually passes in a blink, so why not stretch it out. Start making hot cocoa all the time, hit some holiday craft shows, and definitely make some crafts of your own. 
We don't plan on putting our tree up yet, but we do have a few favorite Christmas pieces on display. We often start with our kitchen table which normally has cakes stands full of faux cakes and pastries all year round. And just recently we had some vintage jack o' lanterns, and a faux cherry pie. 

Above you can see our latest seasonal table vignette. That adorable little live tree was a gift from Jackson & Perkins. I remember looking at the Jackson & Perkins catalog when I was little. In fact, I can remember using it when I played "office." They were one of "my office's" many "commercial suppliers." ha!

Ok so this isn't just a show & tell, it's also a GIVEAWAY!

You have a chance to win a $75.00 Jackson & Perkins gift card! Which will totally get you a fully decorated little tree like you see above. 
Find the giveaway details at the end of this post.

Being that we go with a neutral and pastel palette for Christmas we received the Merry Christmas decorated tree.  It's a Dwarf Alberta Spruce and it came with these pretty, festive beaded gold ball ornaments.

And gold glittered pinecones! Which work perfectly with our decor! 

And a sweet gold star topper!

My favorite part might be the tiny strand of lights on copper wire. I have a similar strand around a mirror in our living room. They run on batteries that you just tuck inside the pot. They also offer these lights separately
And they offer those gold pinecone candles in a set of three.

I really like the gold Merry Christmas repeat on the cache pot. Just a clean, cheerful, and classic design. 

This is how this particular tree arrives. We simply opted to not use the burgundy glass balls, and added our own pale pink balls and pastel ball garland to make it our own. It took about 8 minutes to set the whole thing up! and it really really is so cheerful! 
Seeing it glowing in the next room while we work on orders, and build up a stock of ornaments for the holiday rush definitely adds some cheer to our long days and nights. 

There are so many cute styles to choose from! If you're not doing a big tree, a little one like this is a great alternative. These are also perfect to send to a family member or friend that could use a burst of holiday cheer. 

And it's a live tree. So you can plant it after the holidays! It comes with care instructions and there's a guide on the Jackson & Perkins site that'll tell you which geographical regions the specific trees will thrive best in. here's how to enter the GIVEAWAY:

Just leave a comment on this post...possibly about the Christmas decoration you're most looking forward to displaying this year. Maybe it's an old classic that you've had forever, maybe it's something you plan on making, or maybe it's something you've got your heart set on buying this year.

That's it! We'll pick a winner on Sunday the 29th!

Good Luck!!

xoxo, Jenny & Aaron

Friday, November 20, 2015

My birthday trip to the Museum of Natural History

Ok, can we all just pretend that isn't my first blog post since July?
Lets just gloss over that little detail and live in the present...ok? I seriously need to blog more and I'm hoping that this holiday season will jolt me back into the habit. But before I get ahead of myself I want to catch up a bit...a least with a birthday recap. 
I had been dying to get back to the Museum of Natural History. I hadn't been there since childhood, and me and Aaron also needed a fix of NYC. We had been locked in the studio forever!

Before we got the subway up to the museum we stopped at a little coffee & croissant kiosk in Bryant Park. It was the perfect weather for standing around and letting the pigeons eat whatever crumbs fell around our feet.

I'm not really a fan of the subway but the B line drops you right in front of the museum so it's a no brainer. Plus, there are all these cool mosaics at the 81st street station. Look at that bat!

That's Teddy Roosevelt up there on his high horse in front of the museum. And on the banner in the archway is a pic of a Tardigrade, also know as a Water Bear. I remember when the news first came out about those things, about how they are pretty much indestructible. Well that's all very fascinating, and sure I'll grant that they are amazing, but more than anything I just think they are so creepy looking...and I express this often. 
Whenever I express any sort of distaste for a creature or actor or politician or and Aaron sorta have an inside joke about it. Aaron will point to whatever it is that I'm currently throwing shade at and say "hey look, it's your boyfriend."
In this case, he pointed up at the Tardigrade banner and said "look, your boyfriend is here."

Even just the entry hall is insane!

This tall fella must've been the butt of so many sore throat jokes back in the day. No but really...that neck is absurd! 
Even though this is the entryway I actually took this pic at the end of our visit. In the morning when we arrived, this entry hall was mobbed! The line to get in took at least a half hour.

I don't think it's possible to see the everything in the place in a single visit, so you have to pick and choose your destinations. At the top of my list was the Hall of Gems. 
It's as dark as a cave in there, so forgive the lighting in these pics.

Out of all the gems and minerals I think my favorites were these Beryl specimens. Me and Beryl could totally go shopping for decor together. We've got pretty much the same color palette.  

The museum contains every wonder of the world and here we were marveling at a room full of rocks!

I'm kidding of course. These things are magic! We could've read about them all they're formed, where they are found, what they're used for, etc...

Pyrite is amazing! The small print below the specimens says where in the world each one was found.

I don't think this one comes from earth. I think there is definitely a planet out there where the wind sounds like Heavy Metal guitars and the entire landscape is made of this stuff.

The museum gift shop is waaaaay fancier than it was when I was 12. This amethyst geode is the size of a KitchenAid mixer! And it's not quite the price of your standard souvenir. Sorry about the glare on the price says $399.99! 
But even if we had the dough...I don't think a giant geode would travel well on the subway.

These $7.99 guys were much closer to our speed. We took an assortment home.

I loved that the gift shop had a wall of items that were all made by Etsy sellers.

I think this was the first room we hit. Sea creatures, crustaceans, insects, small mammals, etc...

Everything is so artfully displayed.

I want this shell collection!

This was a case in the main ground floor hall of the museum. Inside are Teddy Roosevelt's hand written journals and watercolors from when he was a boy. He was a frail and sickly child who found refuge in the study of nature. As a boy Audubon was his favorite artist, and it was so cool seeing Teddy's own little Audubonesque illustrations. 

When you look at the enormity of this whale you think: 
A. how the heck do they suspend that from the ceiling? 
B. how the heck do those things exist in real life?  

The dioramas are mind-blowing. Many of these have been on display since the 1940s! In recent years they've been expertly restored and touched up .

Even from way up close they look perfect. The transition from sculpture to painting is seamless.

If you just saw this pic you'd think it was a painting. But those are life size three dimensional models. The poles holding them up are hidden and disguised. That water line is a sheet of acrylic resin or something!

We could've stared at these little self contained worlds all day long.

I wish we got more pics of the dinosaurs, but as you would imagine it was the most crowded hall in the whole place. We had to move through kinda fast. 
I did get this pic of T Rex and his tiny little arms. Poor guy couldn't scratch an itch and probably couldn't even participate in a round of applause. No wonder why he was so angry.

If we look awkward here it's because we never really take selfies in public places. I think we posed for this and snapped it in under a millisecond. I don't think anyone caught us being derps. 

The rule is...if there is a penny squishing machine, you must make use of the penny squishing machine. I remember even getting a few of these at highway rest stops in Ohio. 
There was also a machine for making kooky videos of yourself and email them directly to your friends. Aaron did that one. It looked like he was riding in a hot air balloon over the African safari. He was pretending to be amazed at the imaginary lions below. Our friends Beca and Doug were the email recipients...and surprisingly we are still friends.  

At one point in the museum we decided to quit while we were still fresh instead of totally exhausting ourselves. We still had beautiful weather to enjoy and our favorite city to explore. And we went to one of our favorite spots for dinner, Rockin' Raw.
We rode the B train down to Soho and walked around before and after dinner. It's impossible for Aaron to walk past a used book store. One second you're talking to him, and the next second he looks like this...engrossed!

It was an awesome birthday trip. We needed the day off soooo bad. 

I'll be posting again very soon with a holiday themed giveaway!

thanks for reading!
xoxo, Jenny...and Aaron says hi!

Monday, July 6, 2015

Our day at the New Egypt Flea Market

We've been meaning to share our day at the New Egypt Flea Market with you guys for a while now. I think we went the same weekend as the Country Living Fair. It had been such a long time since we hung with my sister Melissa, aka Missy, for the entire day. We used to all the time but it seems like our schedule has been so full lately that we barely get any time away from the studio. Well this particular day was perfect. We spent it zig zagging all over Jersey, stopping at flea markets and antique shops in search of things to add to our respective collections. It's actually shocking that we had never been to the New Egypt Flea before. We've spent yeeeears traveling the Jersey back roads and stopping in every little hole in the wall junk shop, but somehow we never once ended up at the New Egypt Flea Market. We had heard very little about the place and really had no idea what to expect.

Well we pulled in to see all of this. Rows and rows of these gravel lanes full of tables, and all of those little buildings are individual shops that are full of all sorts of stuff.

The place is nestled into the woods and sorta feels frozen in time. Apparently all of these buildings (maybe 40 of 'em in total) are old army barracks that were trucked here from Fort Dix in the early 1970s.

Missy found this little handmade cabinet in one of the first shops we came upon.

We parked in a central location behind a row of buildings, so it was convenient to carry stuff back to the car periodically throughout the day. 

And besides these little shops there are also all sorts of storage containers and big trucks kinda being eaten by the surrounding wilderness.

The shops are full of antiques and collectibles, but there are also lots of tools, semi new things, and even handmade stuff like this Folk Art by Bob Justin

I loved this big Santa cut out! love the pink bear and doll...she looks like she could belt out some Italian Opera music. And see that marble top dresser?…it was sooo cheap.

We were trying to get Missy to buy these. 

Sweet little Charlotte. I prob shoulda bought her. But I'm telling you…it was like this whirlwind of goodness and weirdness overload. I guess I was more focused on the place itself and less focused on the actual shopping.

I also probably should have grabbed this entire bin of candy colored vintage plastic doll house furniture that was sitting out in the sun. 

I had to come in to see what the "Nick Nack Nook" had. Because we all know Jenny is beyond down with Nick Nacks! Well they had souvenir plates galore! Totally right up my alley! 

And lots of pennants! 

I was hoping for a Wildwood or an Atlantic City pennant, but no luck. 

But I did score this sweet Wildwood plate! 

Here it is hanging in our bathroom among our little Jersey shore souvenir plate collection! :)

Ok, back to the Flea…a box full of kitty figurines basking in the sun.

As soon as I downloaded the photo of the box full of kittens to my computer I was reminded of this classic pic I found on the internet years ago.  

And while we were there Aaron decided to open his own shop. Ha! I actually don't remember what was in this shop. But if it really was Aaron's it would only be Kluttered with BOOKS! (And by the way…he bought about a dozen books on this outing. He's crazy.)

Ahh and this sweet lil guy! The perfect Flea Market pup. And we heard from his owner…or to be more  politically correct, his Human Companion…that this was actually his first day at the flea market! And he couldn't have been more friendly. What a sweetie! 

I love these little buildings!

If the New Egypt Flea had a mayor, or a spokesman, or a poster guy...this fella should be it. I had to take his pic. 

This gal needs a tubby and some moisturizer. 

Missy got this awesome bag!

This is Kevin and Denean, the owners of This or That Store. They had great stuff. And in our brief conversation with them we learned some interesting things about the Flea Market and about their own past. Kevin was once a famous New Jersey professional wrestler known as The Pine Baron. And keeping in true pro wrestler character, he popped on his shades right before I snapped this pic.

They had a great selection of old bottles. We'll definitely be going back and next time we're going to bring our shopping A-game.

This is Keith, the manager of the place. Here he is holding a painting of the place done by a local artist. I wish I wrote down the name of the artist!

I can't tell you how much I love this sign on the door. 

After we visited every bit of the New Egypt Flea we got back on the road and instantly had to stop at a diner to recharge. If you are road tripping in Jersey, diner stops are a must. We are the diner capitol of the world. 
 Ok, so I have to explain this pic. That's my plate bottom right. Aaron's plate is on the bottom left, our shared fries in the middle, and Missy's plate on the top right. Missy's is a Chicken Caeser Salad Wrap, which came warm, no actually hot. And the whole idea of a hot salad was a complete turn off. She was not thrilled. And Aaron, for some crazy reason strayed from the tried and true and ordered the "Swiss Cheese Sandwich". Yeah, even the waitress had to double check the menu for that really? She had to double check to see why in the world the menu would list something so boring. And in the end Aaron concurred…it was capital B Boring. 

I was the only smart one who stuck with tradition and got "The Happy Waitress"…which is grilled American cheese on white with tomato, and a pickle on the side. You can't lose with The Happy Waitress. It's my go-to. 

After the diner we ended up in Point Pleasant, grabbed ice coffees, and hit up some antique shops. Missy scored some great stuff that she'll be using for her pop up shop displays, and we saw some good stuff but nothing that we HAD to have. And apparently we didn't take any photos in Point Pleasant…sorry folks!
After Point, we headed to Asbury Park, which is where Missy lives. It had been a while since we had been in town.

We ended up running into some old friends and staying out way too late. We got delicious Korean street tacos at Mogo's and ice cream on the boardwalk, and laughed a ton. It was such a fun fun day. 

We hope to do some more weekends like this before the summer is up. And of course we'll come back to share all about our adventures. Thanks so much again for reading!
xo, Jenny…and Aaron says hi!