doing just fine.

Posted on: Friday, February 20, 2015

Ann-Marie Loves
Ann-Marie Loves
Ann-Marie Loves

As I uploaded a bunch of recent images onto my computer last night, I was overcome with joy. I am so grateful to have these simple moments — the ones that are so fleeting yet so powerful — captured forever.

I often wonder if John and I are doing enough as Briar’s parents. Are we setting a good example? Are we showing her enough love? Are we giving her all the tools she needs to flourish and thrive? And worst of all, are we looking at our phones too much?! I’m constantly evaluating and reevaluating all the ways the two of us can better our parenting skills.

But then I see these images and I know we’re doing just fine. I see the joy and wonder on Briar’s face. I see the unconditional love in my eyes. I see how John would move heaven and earth for the sake of his daughter. These photos reaffirm everything for me. We are doing just fine.

coveting for baby | etsy edition.

Posted on: Tuesday, February 17, 2015

Every now and then, I’ll fall down the Etsy rabbit hole and lose myself in shop after shop of handmade goodness. Unsurprisingly, I gravitate towards anything baby-related. What can I say? Briar is forever my favorite subject. Here are some of my recent favorite finds:

Coveting for Baby | Etsy Edition | Ann-Marie Loves

From left to right, top to bottom:

1. Woodland Animal Mobile. How amazing would this be over a crib or changing table? I know Briar would completely enthralled!

2. Bears Pattern Overnight Bag. This adorable bag would be perfect for stashing diapers on the go OR for a sturdy carrier for a night with Nana + Papa.

3. Bandana Bib. With Briar eating solid foods, it seems like we never have enough bibs to protect her clothes from the inevitable onslaught of avocado. This bib is such a great color and the bandana shape is just adorable.

4. The Slide. Such a sweet print that would fit any nursery.

5. Elephant Tissue Holder. Cold + flu season has never looked better.

6. Wonky Tree Wall Decal. I love a trend that a. ) doesn’t take itself too seriously, and b.) doesn’t require too much commitment . This fun + modern tree decal fits the bill perfectly

7. Wooden Doll Stroller. I can only hope that Briar will love her dolls the same way that I did as a child, and this mini stroller would be perfect for carting my old Molly + Samantha around the house.

8. Organic Baby Blanket. It’s official: one can never have too many lightweight swaddle blankets. Especially when they’re this stylish.

9. Personalized Family. Okay, forget about Briar…I want a set of handmade dolls that look like my little family! What an awesome concept.

 

P.S. Speaking of babies, I can’t stop watching this video from the weekend. Six month olds are the FUNNIEST.

valentine’s cards using digital brushes.

Posted on: Friday, February 13, 2015

Simple Valentines Cards Using Digital Brushes + Free Download! | Ann-Marie Loves

Valentine’s Day has always been a favorite of mine, significant other or not. I love the candy (heart-shaped Sweet Tarts, what what!), I love that everything is pink + red, and I love love love the paper goods. Since I am big on ideas but short on free time these days, I decided to go as simple as possible with my V-Day cards. Less is most definitely more.

Simple Valentines Cards Using Digital Brushes + Free Download! | Ann-Marie Loves

Thanks to Photoshop, I was able to take a recent photo of Briar, make it pink, and add a few phrases (that I turned into digital brushes!) to pull it all together. Then I printed them out, sliced them up, and glued the fronts to the backs…all before Briar woke up from her nap. Bingo bango bongo.

Simple Valentines Cards Using Digital Brushes + Free Download! | Ann-Marie Loves

Simple Valentines Cards Using Digital Brushes + Free Download! | Ann-Marie Loves

If you enjoy a good eleventh hour holiday crafting sesh like myself, feel free to download these digital brushes for yourself! Happy love day, everyone!

P.S. Other holiday digital brushes found here!

briar turns six months old!

Posted on: Monday, February 9, 2015

Briar is Six Months! | Ann-Marie Loves
Briar is Six Months! | Ann-Marie Loves
Briar is Six Months! | Ann-Marie Loves
Briar is Six Months! | Ann-Marie Loves
Briar is Six Months! | Ann-Marie Loves
Briar is Six Months! | Ann-Marie Loves
Briar is Six Months! | Ann-Marie Loves
Briar is Six Months! | Ann-Marie Loves
Briar is Six Months! | Ann-Marie Loves
Briar is Six Months! | Ann-Marie Loves
Briar is Six Months! | Ann-Marie Loves

WOW. Time is flying. I can hardly believe that it’s been half a year since I met my golden girl for the first time. We’re only one day in, but I can attest that six months is the best age! Briar is a smiling, giggling, rolling, babbling, napping (!) machine and I am so in love.

as of late | february edition.

Posted on: Tuesday, February 3, 2015

As of Late | February Edition | Ann-Marie Loves

Reading The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up after a big move and feeling inspired to part with half of our belongings. Insta-sale, anyone?

Loving my new wash-and-go haircut. Getting ready in the morning has never been easier!

Watching Briar sleep in her own bed in her own room (at last!), thanks to the magic of video monitors. Even though the night vision is a little (okay, a lot) creepy-looking, I sleep better knowing I can see her sleep better with the click of a button.

Thinking that this is the greatest gift a child could give their parent.

Enjoying this unseasonably warm (even for Southern California) winter. It always feels good to roll the windows down in the middle of January.

Already dreaming of the day I get to decorate a big girl room for Briar. How amazing is this room by Joni of Lay Baby Lay?

Looking forward to Valentine’s Day! Sure, it’s a made-up card holiday, but it’s a holiday nonetheless!

Feeling better and better now that I’ve rejoined the gym and can take my favorite Zumba classes again!

Wishing this insanely cute dress came in my size!

Wanting to try out this edamame guacamole dip.

Spending waaaaay too much time on my phone these days. I need to hide my iPhone from myself…

Mourning the end of my favorite TV show of all time, Parenthood. Anytime I want to feel all the feelings, I’ll re-watch the finale. Holy moly, what an ending.

Thinking that I will never tire of “Uptown Funk.” I said the same thing about “Treasure” and I could still listen to that song on repeat (number 20 would probably agree).

Putting my 2015 printable calendar and holiday stamp digital brushes on deep discount!

party hat diy.

Posted on: Friday, January 30, 2015

DIY Party Hat | Ann-Marie Loves

Last month, I put together a tutorial on how to make New Year’s Eve party hats for Dear Lizzy’s blog. With Oh Happy Day’s hat template as my guide, I had a great time assembling this little guy out of patterned paper and topping it with a yarn pom pom. So simple and yet such a fun statement for any celebration.

DIY Party Hat | Ann-Marie Loves

Briar was an excellent model…for about 26 seconds. Then the hat was yanked off and the party was OFFICIALLY over. Here’s hoping she will be more excited to wear one on her first birthday!

P.S. You can see the whole tutorial over here!

daily coffee routine.

Posted on: Thursday, January 29, 2015

Daily Coffee Routine | Ann-Marie Loves

Aside from wanting to pay off bills, get back in shape, and be the best mom that I can possibly be, my big resolution for 2015 is to drink good coffee. Like, really good coffee. And given the fact that I haven’t had a full night’s sleep since August, I feel like my hipster coffee habit is more than justified…it’s essential.

When I told John about my resolution, he listened and signed me up with a craft coffee subscription. (What a guy, that John.) I’m still on my first installment and it is exactly what I was hoping for! Ingredient wise, I like my coffee to be pretty simple: just coffee + 2% milk. But thanks to a few awesome tools and tricks, I’ve learned how to take a regular cup of joe to the next level. Here’s what my morning coffee routine looks like:

Daily Coffee Routine | Ann-Marie Loves

I start by filling the bottom of my stovetop coffee maker with fresh water. Then, I place the hole-y filter (proper term, I’m sure ;)) on top and fill that with coffee grounds. Finally, I screw the lid onto the base and place it on the stove over high heat to boil.

Daily Coffee Routine | Ann-Marie Loves

Once the coffee begins to boil, it’s ready to be taken off the burner.

Daily Coffee Routine | Ann-Marie Loves

Next, I pour approximately one quarter cup of milk into my mug and foam it up using a handheld milk frother. I’ve learned that the secret to making it work is to hold the frother at an angle just below the surface of the milk and only use it for a very short amount of time (maybe ten seconds?). The longer it froths, the more bubbly and flat it becomes, which defeats the whole point of using this tool in the first place. Truth be told, I’m still learning how to finesse it to perfection.

Daily Coffee Routine | Ann-Marie Loves

Once the milk has been frothed, I pour my hot coffee over the center, grab my breakfast, and begin my day.

(P.S. If you use the code l9b-ye8 at checkout, you can save 15% off your first craft coffee subscription purchase!)

How do you like your coffee?

mama + baby session | jamie + luna.

Posted on: Wednesday, January 28, 2015

Jamie + Luna | Ann-Marie Espinoza Photography

My mind currently resides in Babyland Central.

If I’m not feeding, changing, bathing, playing with, dressing, rocking, or carrying Briar around, then I am most certainly thinking about any one of those activities. I’ve been warned many times that the baby stage flies, and my goodness, truer words have never been spoken. Briar will be six months (!!) in a week and half and I feel so fortunate to have had her early newborn days (which I can barely remember at this point!) captured forever, thanks to La Rousse Photo.

That’s why I was so thrilled to be able to take these photos of my sister-in-law and my niece. Baby Luna has already changed so much since then, but I can attest that the bond she shares with her mama grows stronger and stronger everyday.

Jamie + Luna | Ann-Marie Espinoza Photography
Jamie + Luna | Ann-Marie Espinoza Photography
Jamie + Luna | Ann-Marie Espinoza Photography
Jamie + Luna | Ann-Marie Espinoza Photography
Jamie + Luna | Ann-Marie Espinoza Photography
Jamie + Luna | Ann-Marie Espinoza Photography
Jamie + Luna | Ann-Marie Espinoza Photography
Jamie + Luna | Ann-Marie Espinoza Photography
Jamie + Luna | Ann-Marie Espinoza Photography
Jamie + Luna | Ann-Marie Espinoza Photography
Jamie + Luna | Ann-Marie Espinoza Photography
Jamie + Luna | Ann-Marie Espinoza Photography
Jamie + Luna | Ann-Marie Espinoza Photography

pasadena.

Posted on: Monday, January 26, 2015

Moving On | Ann-Marie Loves

A few weeks ago, I posted about my dilemma over staying put in Pasadena or moving closer to family.

Even though we’ve only lived in Pas for a little over a year, I feel like so much of my identity is tied up in being a resident. Not only have I wanted to live here for years, but this is the first place that John and I lived together as a married couple. This is the town in which I was pregnant and had a baby. This is the only home Briar has ever known. Needless to say, the sentimental value of this city had me in a freaking headlock.

But. The thing about Pasadena is that it’s juuuust far enough away from family + friends that I can’t utilize their help with Briar. And man oh man, do I need help. Don’t get me wrong…Briar is an easy baby (relatively speaking). She loves people, she can take formula just as well as breast milk, she’s an excellent traveler, and most importantly, she’s a happy + healthy little girl. But at this stage in the game (oh, hi hospital bills), John and I both need to be working. And that means I need to pass the baby off for awhile each week so I can do my part to contribute.

So, we have moved.

And as sad as I was (am!) about leaving, I’ve already had a taste of what the next few months have in store: me time. I’ve been treating myself to solo coffee dates. I’ve listened to several podcasts back to back without having to stop. I’ve been catching up on work + e-mails. I had my neglected hair trimmed and styled. And best of all, I’ve been able to hear my own thoughts and and get some mental clarity! For the first time since Briar was born, I’ve been able to breathe easier knowing that it’s not all on me to keep things going. And it feels good.

Whenever I feel down about that chapter closing, John reminds me that we can always move back one day. Preferably to a house on El Molino ;)

last day for stamps!

Posted on: Friday, January 9, 2015

annmarielovespaper.bigcartel.com

Happy Friday! I’m dropping in to let you know that tomorrow (Saturday) is the last day for rubber stamps, my friends. I’ll still be making custom + address stamps, but as for monthly designs, I am officially hanging up my hat. Be sure to grab them while you can! Thank you so much for all your purchases these past few years! Your support has meant the WORLD to me :)

On to the next!

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