For as long as I can remember, my lifelong ambition has been to be a wife and a mother—and to be REALLY good at it. Flashback to the mid 80’s, I can see my younger sister (by 13.25 months), Rebekah and I dressed up in vintage hats that once belonged to my grandmother, purses dangling off our wrists, pushing our doll pram strollers with Collie puppy dogs dressed in doll clothes. Live puppies make great dolls. Not to mention the fact that my sister had cut all of my doll’s hair with the promise it would grow back… it didn’t. She clearly trumps me in the IQ department while I gladly own my title as Domestic Goddess. Technically, no one has ever actually called me a Domestic Goddess, but I have been compared to Martha Stewart a few times…and that’s good enough for me!
I loved playing with dolls and always envisioned myself being a mom. As a child, I honestly can’t remember ever seeing myself in any other career or vocation. I don’t necessarily remember being super creative early on, but what I DO remember is being very inspired by women who did home and family well. My mom was, of course, my biggest influence. She decorated for every holiday. We had a lot of those cardboard cut-out images for each and every holiday that she would hang on all of the cabinets, windows, refrigerator and doors—pretty much any surface Scotch tape would stick to. It was ALL over when window clings came out…she still likes those. At some point my dad got in on all of the decorating too—especially the Christmas decorating. He was the original inventor of the ever-popular icicle lights (if only he had gotten a patent). I remember clearly how impressed he was with himself when he put 400 mini lights in one shrub. He is meticulous about greenery being correctly and adequately lit: you must start at the base and follow each branch out. No wrapping in a circular motion…ever…this is completely unacceptable. From the time we were very small, my parents carefully trained my sisters and I on how to properly decorate a Christmas tree. You never just put an ornament on the tree—even if you are 5. You pick up a single ornament and step back away from the tree and consider all of the other ornaments around to see where the best fit for that particular ornament might be. It’s an art. An art we obviously had not perfected in our youth, considering that my mother always re-decorated the tree after we went to bed. Besides just holiday decorating, my parents definitely passed on to my sisters and I a love for creating a home that was not only beautiful, but one that was welcoming for friends, family and celebrations of all kinds.
There are other women who, through the years, have greatly inspired me. For some, it was their ability to run a home—to keep things clean and organized. For others, it would be all of the amazing and fun craft projects and activities they were always doing with their children. I was constantly downloading and being inspired by women who had a good sense of design, who were able to create home environments that embodied warmth, love, hospitality and creativity. As I grew older, I started to pay special attention to moms who produced exceptional children—children who were kind, conscientious, creative, successful and carefully watching how these moms parented.
With all of these years of inspiration, I eventually morphed into a pretty creative and crafty person and found myself working in jobs that really focused on creativity, event planning and project management. Having a family of my own has been both the culmination and convergence of all things I love most! God surely knew better than me what I needed in a partner. My husband, David spent most of his childhood on the mission field with his parents in South America and had moved more than 20 times before we got married and settled into our first home. While he never felt like he was necessarily missing out, Christmas for him might have been a tree made of Legos and a box of cereal or a candy bar as a gift. Despite the strong admonitions in many popular dating books to NEVER, ever, under any circumstances, tell the guy you are dating that your greatest ambition in life is to be a wife and mother—that was precisely what he was looking for. He wanted someone who had the ability to create home and family…and that happens to be my specialty! In this season of life, nothing brings me more joy than channeling all of my creative energies into crafting the most loving and magical home environment for my little family and I am so thankful for a husband who allows me to realize all of my grandiose visions…at least most of the time when they work into the budget ;)
The Well Styled Child is my outlet for highlighting all of the things I love most. You can expect to see lots on kid fashion—all of the carefully-kept secrets of where to find extra special clothes and how to buy them—even boutique on a budget. There will be monthly features of my favorite, high-style finds from everyday places like Target. Expect to see lots on kid décor and on creating magical and creative spaces for your little ones. With the fast-approaching Holiday season, you’ll find lots of resources for my top toy picks, craft project ideas, fun family traditions and much more. With my love of party planning, you can expect to see features of my own events and events I love, along with LOTS of ideas, tips and tricks on creating memorable kid parties of your own!
Above all, I hope visiting The Well Styled Child just makes you feel inspired to create a little magic of your own!