Solstice on My Shoulders Makes Me Happy ☀️

Hey friends.

Sooo, now that I have officially promised myself I'd like to blog, I managed to publish my first post under the cover of night, like a true and proud introvert..

But on this Solstice, I wanted to just share a feel good post about the things that have been giving me life lately. It's been a rough year, so I truly appreciate all of these seemingly small things knowing how much they lift me up..

Cheers to the things that have been lighting me up! and here you have it:

  • Making an effort to get out and be a part of the local Salt Lake community. 

  • I'm such an introvert - it kind of does take a little effort for me to peel myself out of my little plant emporium of a living room and go out to see what's new in Salt Lake, but I usually enjoy when I do!

    Over the weekend I had the opportunity to volunteer with Green Urban Lunch Box, weeding the thistle from the garden. If you’ve ever wrestled with getting a thistle out of the hard hot ground, you know what a full body experience it is. 

    A bunch of volunteers and staff met up on a sunny summer Salt Lake Saturday morning and worked together to clear thistle from the garden beds that will grow food for our community. It was hard work during the snip of time I was there.

    Friendly farm work is so rewarding. I learned a few things about my new friends, and I know I’ll be back. Green Urban Lunch Box is such a cool local organization with a focus on food insecurity, and I love learning more and more about what they do. I’ll write more about them in the future.. but for now, I thank them for an earthy sunny morning. 

     elderberry bush and thistle at Green Urban Lunchbox Salt Lake City

    I finished up Saturday at a backyard bluegrass concert with a dear friend in a gorgeous Sugar House neighborhood, smelling the sweet cool grasses and flowers, surrounded by a ton of friendly folks ready to welcome a stranger. Ahhh. 

    It think some of my favorite days of late have centered on good people in beautiful backyards. Connecting with people out in the wild really lit me up. And listening to live music with my feet in the grass really grounded me into a lovely experience.

    What else is warming my heart these days?


  • Visits to see my family in Southern Utah

  • Moving to Salt Lake has meant that I have far less time to celebrate the milestones of my family. That has been hard. Taking work time off is a delicate balance, and truthfully, I can’t always muster up the funds to do it as much as I would like.

    But in a recent visit, I felt grateful to celebrate my dad and my niece in the same weekend - which also meant being surrounded by all of the other little cute sugar boogers in the family. I love seeing them all growing up, and I wish I could join more of the celebrations.

    image of illustrated sunshine with a mustached face and the caption, "Mr. Sunshine has been shining for 10,075 days! He likes to spend time remembering."

    This is the very grayish page of my first picture book, written for my dad 20 years ago when he turned 55 years old. 😅 I drew each image with colored pencils, scanned them into my computer, dropped them into a Word document, and ran on down to Kinko's Copies to have them bound. That was one year before I decided to pursue actual graphic design as part of what I 'did.'

    This year on my dad's birthday I wrote in the updated number of days he's been shining on his birthday card. And I plan to reprint the book with a few updates and a much higher print quality ;)

    When I’m not flittering down to Southern Utah to frolic with family and dance in the smell of the desert chaparral, I have really been getting into…

  •  Working on my art and making patterns.

  • It’s my happy place. I slip right into a flow state when working on the creative process of building new illustrations or pattern designs. This lights me up from within, and lately I have been going so deep I hardly know who I am when I come up for air. 

    I love that kind of a flow state.

    And I love expressing what I love in the form of art and pattern. And I will love when I see my licensed art out in the wild..

    Denik notebook with repeat pattern of desert motifs photographed against a desert background.

    Speaking of ‘out in the wild’ here is my artwork on this beautiful Denik notebook - inspired by the desert, and posing for a photo shoot in the same desert… This notebook was a gift I received when I recently took Bonnie Christine’s Surface Pattern Immersion 2023 course. 

    I love that the notebook we received was created by a local Utah company, Denik. I have my fingers crossed that I’ll license some art with them once I send in an official pitch…

    I also can’t get enough of…

  • The cooler summer weather of Salt Lake this year!

  • Being back in Salt Lake City has reconnected me with a nostalgia of my past years here in subtle and beautiful ways. 

    One of those ways is the full body experience of smelling the summer morning chill in the air. The sweet scent of grass, earth and flowers are so strong, and so very reminiscent of my early adult years here. 

    sweet, adorable white and yellow blossoms living their best life in a Salt Lake City backyard.

    And this summer in particular has been so uncustomarily cool. The stretches of rainy days… the cooler mornings and evenings. The lower power bill. It’s all sooo delicious..

    And that’s a quick look into some of the things that have been motivating and inspiring me during this slice of my life. As I navigate the transition of being a recently divorced, recently transplanted, recently declared surface pattern artist, I’ll surely have more to share more about my creative processes and balancing my very full (and very cool) day job with my entrepreneurial aspirations.

    Until then, I hope you soaked up that solstice sun and enjoyed this little peep into what lights me up.

    Happy Solstice to you :)

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