Wednesday, July 29, 2009

the elusive number four

We are all the main character in our own life story, are we not?  Well.  Here's a bit of mine.  I know, I know...this blog is all about me.  But some subjects I have kept a little mum.  I was waiting for the moment of the big reveal.  The wow factor, you know  {Surprise!  Look what I've been doing!} and all that.  But then I wonder, if the story isn't more interesting than the end result.  Especially when the end result is taking so much longer than I thought. Aye, aye, aye.

Remember this? Of course you don't.  That was light years ago, right.  Well,  things didn't go as planned.  Not exactly.  But I did end up with a contract with Andover Fabrics!  That's right!  A signed contract.  It was in the process for so long that when it came in the mail it almost seemed normal.  Now that's weird.  But when the word was final on the phone, I did indeed celebrate.  I was by myself (except for a sleeping baby).  So there was a lot of silent jumping up and down.  
Here I am gripping my contract tightly in my best accidental Rosie the Riveter pose.  

That gets you pretty much up to date.  The word now is that my collection has gotten mixed reviews (I don't blame them, I'm before my time).  And it's being taken around to some of Andover's best clients to see what they say.  I wonder who their best clients are?  I wonder if their best clients would be my best clients?  I would describe my work as...girly/modern (so not traditional).  But I definitely adhere to traditional values of quilting when it comes to scale and contrast.  Although I do have larger prints and one huge print.  Oh, how I wish I could really show you.  It's so pretty you guys!  

And here is the stack of designs I sent them.

I'm told it's harder for me because I don't have a name out there yet.  No patterns, etc. Hmmm.  I keep thinking that all things are possible.  That's what my husband keeps telling me.  So it surprises me that things don't just happen perfectly.  But then again it still surprises me when they do.  I know one thing for sure.  I have absolutely no idea what I'm doing.  But it feels right so I'm just going to keep plugging along.  Wish me luck.  

As for my post title.  Have I mentioned this book before?  Finding Your Own North Star.  I love it.  She's so funny.  And I think she has a lot of wisdom.  So according to Martha Beck...our hero's saga consists of four steps.  

1. Protagonist sets out to achieve goal. Check
2. Protagonist runs into a mess of trouble.  Check
3. Protagonist struggles through adverse conditions.  Check, check, check.
4. Protagonist achieves the goal.  (the elusive number four!)

In the mean time I know I can do some things differently to help myself along.  I still have a lot to learn.  I just figured it's time to come clean.   Especially since I've been pulling out my portfolio for anyone to take a gander at who is nice enough to ask.  

I'm so thankful for this opportunity.  I'm so thankful for the team at Andover taking a chance on me.  I grateful for their enthusiasm for my designs and I can't wait for everyone to see them!  So next time you are talking with your rep from Andover Fabrics make sure to ask when Andrea Larsen's first line is going to come out!  Tell them you hear it's going to be fabulous!  They would be so confused. That makes me laugh just thinking of it.  That's a good happy laugh, not evil and sinister...FYI.

Sunday, July 26, 2009

baby feet

I just found this picture of my nephew Eli as I was backing up my family pictures from June.  How cute is this. Zonked out on his little doggie blanket.  And I love his little black pants.  

I'm dying-dying to paint my living room white.  Soon.... soon.


Incase you didn't know, Friday July 24th is Pioneer Day!  And since I am a faithful Mormon girl I took my kids to our local Pioneer day celebration!  It was by far the best pioneer day I have ever been to.  I'm sure in Utah they go all out, but everywhere I've lived here in the south it has always been a little more low key.  Until now...
There were sack races.
And my kids are so cute hopping around in sacks!

Who knew?

There was a handcart for kids to either ride in or pull.

We dug for potatoes, picked apples, and hunted eggs!
I want to make one  of these chickens, they are darling.  But what would I do with it?
And a petting zoo.  And that's not even the half of it!  We made our own butter, hammered nails, made necklaces, shopped at the general store. It was all very exciting.  And I got to spend some time in the temple today which is what it's all about.
Some of my ancestors left England and came to America to join the trek west.  Actually, that's not exactly true.  I think the story goes that my ancestor (Richard Bentley?- I could be remembering that name wrong and my family history book is in storage.) ANYway.  He left with his sister and her husband who were with the Mormons in order to look for work.  And then there was a girl...isn't that how the story always goes. 
 I'm so proud to have such a rich history.  My great-grandpa LeRoi Bentley put a lot of work into our family history book.  I'm so grateful to have that.  And to top the night off I watched a John Adams movie and worked on a quilt.  I was just feeling overall so grateful for all the great men and women who have gone before us and given us so many freedoms.  
I was listening to Jennifer Paganelli on craft sanity a while ago.  She was saying that she was thankful for Amy Butler who has been such a pioneer in the fabric design industry.  So true, Jennifer, so true.  Speaking of which I will have to update you all on my fabric designing journey.  It has not been smooth.  Wouldn't ya know it.

Friday, July 24, 2009

Salty the Dog

I put an empty salt box in Olivia's art supplies.  I thought it would be fun to use for crafting. She found it this morning.  Dumped the salt onto a napkin.  Tasted it.  Invited Bentley to have a taste.  Then she ran off with the salt carefully cradled in the napkin.  I said, "What about this?"  Pointing to the salt box on the floor.  She said, "OH!".  A few minutes later she came back with a new pet dog named Salty. 


Not exactly what I had in mind.  But hey, whatever works!

Woof, woof.

Today I'm thankful for creative kids that make me laugh!

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

forward slash

My eyes hurt from staring at the middle of my forehead a little too long in the mirror this morning.  I just noticed a new wrinkle that looks exactly like a forward slash \.  Hmmm.  I'm wondering what expression I make that got me that mark?  Smack dab in the middle of my forehead.  My eyes hurt.

Thursday, July 16, 2009

be brave

I was inspired by this quote by Paulo Coelho today:

Everyday-together with the sun- God gives us a moment in which it is possible to change everything that makes us unhappy.  Every day we try to pretend that we don't realize that moment, that it doesn't exist, that today is just the same as yesterday and will be the same as tomorrow.  But if you pay attention, you can discover the magic instant.  It may be hiding at the moment when we put the key in the door in the morning, in the silence right after dinner, in the thousand and one things that all seem the same to us.  This moment exists- a moment when all the strength of the stars passes through us and lets us work miracles.

Sometimes it's so hard to make those changes.  Sometimes something you thought would be wonderful doesn't end up being so great.  I was brave today.  And now I'm going to go eat some ice cream.

Today I'm grateful for new beginnings.

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

proof that we actually did have fun!

While we were in Utah we went to This is the Place Heritage Park.  I don't remember ever having gone there before.  We had a great day there!  I am such a sucker for historical stuff and there were so many fun crafts for the kids to do.  We went with my Aunt Darcy and her girls Maddie and Sophie.  I love them!  

Bentley ended up getting this hat and he wears it around everywhere.  Even sleeping with it sometimes.

What a stud!

The drug store was so pretty! 
Chris and his mini-me.
Of course Bentley was all about the train.

Sophie girl!
I love how happy Chickie looks here.
Sweet kid!  Maddie is an amazing artist!  She even has her own blog.

This cracks me up!  Look at Bentley's expression!  Summer school, ugh!

new digits

I got myself some new digits!  And a fancy new phone to go with it.  I'm slightly in love with my phone and that's a definite first for me!  Well, from the looks of the picture above, maybe it's not quite a first.  Things sure have changed since the 70s.  If you'd like my new digits to have for yourself just email me at and I will send them to you!  And if you called me at my old number over the last three weeks I'm sorry!  I blame vacation brain.  

xo drea

Saturday, July 11, 2009

because I like making lists

Well if I was disappointed by the smooth sailing of our drive to Utah not giving me any good fodder for the blog, the ride home most definitely did not disappoint.  Let me tell it in lists.  For kicks.
Funniest Quotes:
"I think you would look good in a straight jacket!" ~My brother in law (as we were leaving Idaho--because it was bad before we even got in the car to leave)
"I'm SO glad I'm not a mom right now!" ~Olivia (you don't want to know)
"Thanks for all the memories!  Good and bad!  It was a great trip!" ~Buffy (she slays me!)

Phrases most often repeated:
"Zeke.   Zeke, Zeke!!!" ~anyone wanting to talk to Zeke.
"Malachi, look out the window!" ~Buffy
"Bentley called me a wienie head!" ~Malachi (He learned the hard way that if you teach a kid a dirty trick he may use it against you)
"Keep your hands to yourself!" ~ Buffy and I equally

Number of times we had to stop at the side of the interstate:
4 ~twice for someone to pee and twice to clean up vomit.

Speaking of vomit:
number of times my kids puked:  5
diarrhea: once....but it should have counted for more.

Number of movies I steadied the mini DVD player on a large stack of pillows so all kids could see:  4 ~slightly painful but SOOO worth it.

2~Chickie has a gimpy foot.  She is walking on the side of her left foot.  She sat in the back of the van which was pushed unusually close to the seat in front of it in order to fit all of our things in the back.  She had this condition when we arrived in CO and for I think four days after.  I thought it was from something else until she got it again after our first day of driving home.  
Malachi bit his own finger and made himself cry.  I'm pretty sure it was so he could get a band-aid.

Good things that happened on the drive home:
Buffy singing.
Cotillion by Georgette Heyer ~SO GOOD!  So funny! Go read it.

Things this last bit of the trip was worse than:
nine months of pregnancy
Calling 911 when Chris had a kidney stone and we thought his appendix burst
being stranded after a football game when I was 16 because my dad forgot to pick me up or maybe he was just really, really late.

I'm SO not kidding.
I wanted to die.  
And I almost cried.

Things I left:
vegetable peeler
paring knife
bentley's neenee (blanket)
cd case with all our best kids DVDs  :(

Things I love about being home:
Being with my kids!!! I feel like I didn't get to see them over the past three weeks they were always off with cousins.
The humidity!  Crazy I know.  But this is the first time I was actually over the desert.  
The sounds the bugs make at night. 
I love that the crazy people around town seem normal because they are crazy in a way I understand. 

Things I did today:
finished reading my book
went shopping
tidied up my itunes library
returned library books

Things I was supposed to do today but did not:
clean out the fridge
do laundry

I can't wait for:
Chris to get home in a bit!  We saw him for 30 minutes before he had to leave.  He is off in MN dancing!    And he did AMAZINGLY well, again!  They got 2nd place in Rising Star this time!  And 5th in the open pro!  I almost can't believe it!  Except that I saw them and they are amazing!  

If you read this whole thing I'm sure you are thanking me for NOT including pictures.  It would not have been pretty.

In fact if you are still reading this I would like to offer you a sticker for being so good!  Something I tried with the kids.  They shared all they had very willingly for about 15 minutes until it got to hard to keep track of sticker giving, toy opening, and lunch ordering, and that's about when I made the giant pillow tower for the movies.

Can anyone guess what made Olivia say her funny quote at the top?  Because I ended up telling you anyway.

The end. I promise.

Whew, this was very therapeutic for me.  I now have closure from the trip.