Tuesday, February 7, 2012

No Messin' with this Paint

The kiddos and I got a chance this last Friday to pop over to Santa Barbara for an impromptu visit with our old friends.  Yay!  After making a quick call Thursday afternoon to my girls Val and Amy, we checked in the next morning for a playdate at Amy's house.  She lives there with her super clever event-planner husband Geoff of Ambient Events, and their two beautiful kiddos, Lucia and Oli.  And Val came over with Jack's forever BFF Will and his new baby bro, August.  It was my first time to meet 3 month old little August, and he is every bit as beautiful as all the pics we've seen.  Here's Amy on the left and Val on the right holding August.

Amy kept our kids entertained with a pan full of water and a big fat paintbrush for each kid to dip into the 'paint' in the pan.  For our 0-3 year olds, this idea was pure genius!

Jack loves Will and Lucia so much.  And since they've been hanging out since baby-hood, that friendship is pretty special.  You might remember seeing their pics back when Jack tried to steel their cheerio necklaces.

I love hanging out with Val and Amy.  Not only are they both the definition of good friendship and hospitality, but they also breath creativity in everything they do.  It's like food for my brain when I'm around them.

They make motherhood look smooth and simple, so I like being with them and hopefully learning by osmosis.  

And with the whole water = paint thing, the kids entertained themselves for about 45 minutes on the back patio.  Eventually they got wet and took their clothes off, but just kept filling up the bucket and painting everywhere their little arms could reach.  Seriously, is there anything cuter than naked little kids playing together?  

While the kids painted I snuck off to enjoy Amy's home decor. Everytime I go there something is different. She has such a clever knack of blending the old with the new.  So it always feels fresh and artful and totally inventive.  And even what she views as messy comes out looking pretty chic.

Check out the view when you walk in the front door.  I love the stack of books on the little table, and the giant star hanging on the wall.  And see the massive framed pic with the peacock hanging on the right?  I've always drooled over that.  It used to be in dining room, but she's since moved it to the entryway.

I feel inspired by Amy's lack of intimidation to move her house around, even big giant pictures on the wall.

Here's Lucia's bed with three sweet little mirrors hanging by it.  

I've always admired this three dimentional textured tree that Amy put together in Lu and Oli's bedroom.  That's a chandalier she painted green and hung next to the branches.

Check out how she took different shades and textures of brown fabric and stitched them into narrow tubes to tuck the trunk of the tree into.  And knowing Amy, the courdoroy is probably upcycled from an old pair of pants. She's a master of taking something old and making it into something new and totally useful.

I love how she took torn scraps of fabric and just tied them around the branches on the higher part of the tree for a quick burst of color and hint of leaves.

The dining room, or what it used to be, is now taken over by the kids little table, along with Lucia's ever growing art gallery.


The little table is sitting beneath a hanging pennant light that used to hang above the dining table.  Amy moved that table into the newly-added utility room.  Who is brave enough to move their dining table to the laundry room, and carry it off with flair?  And check out that distressed blue and gold paint on the kids' table, which was once used by Amy and her bro when they were little tykes.  I love the look and color of the beanbag chairs she added for extra kid seating.  And see the kitchen off to the right? Yep, that's chalkboard paint she DIY'd on the wall at the end of the counter.  Amy and Geoff totally overhauled that kitchen when they moved in (along with the rest of the house) with new painted cabinets, countertops and flooring.  

Back to the kiddos art gallery...one thing I totally dig about Amy's house is how the walls are like a blank canvas to show off her array of colorful artefacts.

Check out the folk-style art Lucia sculptured at pre-school.  Clearly she's an apprentice to her mom's school of design.

Here's a peak at a little corner of Amy's kitchen.  She would probably have styled this if she even knew I had taken the picture.  I love the distressed spice rack on the wall next to the stainless steel appliances.

Let's zoom out to see the kitchen through the hole they cut into the wall.  I'm standing in the newly added utility room, decked out with these amazing wall sconces that are sandwiching a distressed canoe oar.

Here's the dining table in its new utility room home.  Amy's trade is floral design, and she clearly has a knack for all things organic.  Check out how she potted these little plants and scattered them across the dining table.

Just before leaving we made our very best attempt at a group photo, which is no mean feat with 6 kiddos under the age of four.

I added a few strategically placed stickers to keep some modesty for the kids, since we're here hanging out on the WWW and all.  

Hope this helps for anyone who needs to keep some kids entertained on a play date or two.

xo CM

1 comment:

  1. What a fun house! I'm lovin' the bib Daisy is wearing. :)