mer_mag I'm so ready for summer magic. Nights under the stars and days spent outdoors reading, playing and dreaming - especially in our #outdoorreadingnook. @shannonweightphotography for @brightlablights 6h

» LOG IN to write comment.

mer_mag This one, always puzzling till his puzzler is soar #thebanisterhouse 3d

» LOG IN to write comment.

mer_mag "Alfie Anderson Cox,
Left his shoes and his socks,
To share a simple view
From a giant pile of rocks." #littlebitsbymer #merillustration
3d

» LOG IN to write comment.

mer_mag What are your bucket list books that you want to be sure to read to your children? There are lots of things I fantasized about doing with kids before I had kids - many of which I've had to let go in favor of sanity. But reading to my kids and exposing them to great literature from all over the world is something that is important enough to me that we try our best to make it happen. I recently went to a really lovely dinner and discussion on Swedish illustrators and authors put on by @zionsmercantile (they're having another in two weeks on Minerva Tichert if you're interested) and I came away completely inspired (and with a tote full of new books). I'm so taken with Elsa Beskow and her love of nature and the Swedish landscape and how she incorporated that into her illustrations. I also love Astrid Lindgren (author of Pippy Longstockings) and was excited to learn more about her and her other books. We can't wait to read Mio, My Son. The first page has already has me hooked! So inspired. #childrensbooks #mermagdolls 5d
  •   jeniarand The Moomins for sure, Chronicles of Narnia, Hobbit, Roald Dahl's books (especially Boy), Mary Poppins, Harry Potter, Anne of Green Gables. I hope their Russian is good enough to read Kir Bulychev's series about Alissa (sci-fi for kids) and Gogol's Night Before Christmas 5d
  •   silvialakkahillo I am italian so we are reading everything from Munari, Rodari and Calvino. Pinocchio too, of course. Pippi Longatockings is a classic in our house too, and I'm looking forward to start the Tolkien and harry potter's saga as soon as my kids are old enough. I suggest another great book I loved as a child "the hounds of the Morrigan", written by Pat O'Shea. 5d
  •   nickyloulou Trying to read a lot of classic children's literature to my kids. My son loved The Wind in the Willows and anything by Jules Vern at age 10. My daughter has loved Heidi, The Secret Garden and A Little Princess at age 7. Plus lots of Roald Dahl and all of Lemony Snicket. Love seeing everyone's recommendations here! 4d
  •   milk_thistle Hmm good question!! I would love to share Roald Dahl adventures with Ruby, and some great Australian classics. Australia has an extraordinary wealth of talent with literature, with Mem Fox one of my childhood faves. Illustrations are beautiful too, alot by artist Julie Vivas (check her out!) But currently I have started reading The Complete Adventures of Snugglepot and Cuddlepie by Ruth Park to Ruby, about two gumnut babies. Probably the most famous of all Australia kids books! I clearly remember being so enraptured reading that as a kid! Reading is the best! Escapism within everyday life 4d

» LOG IN to write comment.

mer_mag I recall a preschool teacher telling me that if you see a child out and about dressed up in a costume or a fancy get-up on an average day, you can probably bet they are a 4 year old. Early childhood is a natural vibrant time for imaginative play. Let's all be 4 yr olds forever. (Miss M is still 3 but close enough) #imaginativeplay #playcreatively 6d
  •   stacy.r.hart My girl does that and she's five, so between the two of them it averages out to four. ;) Love the dress up stage! 5d
  •   lightlovers So wonderful! Our dress up clothes are constantly all over the floor...it's the daily never finishing game 5d
  •   whitty_kaye @mer_mag What kind of makeup do you use on their faces? My little girl would love to add face paint to her play. 5d
  •   milk_thistle So true!! Mine is 4, and every single day, even before breakfast, she is dressed in some extraordinary get-up! 4d

» LOG IN to write comment.

mer_mag This little 10 year old (who looks more like a teenager every day) woke me up at 6 am frantic saying he needed a Dumbledore beard and cloak stat for his "dress up like a literary character" day at school today, (thanks for the heads up kiddo). So I pulled something together and sent him off with one of my black kimono type robes and a sad looking beard from quilt batting. Well not even 2 hours later I get a call from the school with a groggy Atticus talking about how he tripped over his robe at recess and smacked his head on the ground. He blacked out for a bit and his head was hurting so I picked him up from school and let him chill with puzzles and Harry Potter reading. He felt and back to his old self in no time. When I asked him why he wore the robe at recess he simply said, "mom I had this vision of me running with my robe flowing behind me looking real cool." Oh man. So of course I assured him that he did undoubtedly look really cool. #poorkid 7d

» LOG IN to write comment.

mer_mag It's so weird to think this homework table will soon be transformed into a summer creative workstation. Is it just me or does each year fly by faster than the last? Have some fun ideas for the kids already if I can fit them in. Think fairy houses... And how enchanting are these @brightlablights? I had such fun styling strands around #thebanisterhouse with @shannonweightphotography. 1w

» LOG IN to write comment.

mer_mag A sure sign that Miss Milla and I are going to have a pleasantly amicable day together I'm sure. #threeyearolds 1w

» LOG IN to write comment.

mer_mag School's almost out for the summer!! What do you do to entertain kids in the upcoming summer months? Any good tricks to transition nicely from school into summer? We usually try to have swimming lessons right away but we missed the sign up this year so now I'm scrambling for something to transition my kids so they don't park in front of the TV for a few weeks. We'll have to make summer fun jars again. What are you doing? @nicolegerulat for my book Playful: Fun Projects to Make With and For Kids. #playfultoysandcrafts #mermaganimals #mermagpapercrafts 1w
  •   amyweissdesign The photo is adorable! Hope for good weather and fill the wading pool in the back yard. Some splashing and some floating crafts. Probably a museum or two. 1w
  •   hello.scout I love this!! 6d
  •   willowdaygram This shoot (and work) was spectacular! You set the bar, Merrilee 5d

» LOG IN to write comment.

mer_mag Her brothers might almost be finished with school but she's desperate to start. So we've dubbed this @hum_stitchery trouser skirt her school uniform and pulled out her Montessori toys and she's almost content. (But she's a social one). Oh how I wish there was a Reggio inspired or Waldorf school nearby. Anyone know of any? #mermagnaturecrafts #thebanisterhouse 2w

» LOG IN to write comment.

mer_mag I came back from Costa Rica wanting to get rid of ALL MY STUFF. And have consequentially been purging ever since. Nothing like a trip away to reevaluate your need for stuff. I've been in a dance with minimalism for some time and never felt like I could really commit to a long term relationship. I have too much of a grandmas attic type of love for trinkets and treasures. But then I started to realize that minimalism for me means ridding myself of things I don't love or don't use and therefore don't need (which I have plenty of stashed in boxes in our storage room) and the special collections like our ponies are meaningful and have a purpose. We have pretty strict perameters on what toys come in and stay (we have a cap on stuffed animals and everything else must be small enough to fit into baskets- dolls well....we collect those so they have to be special). But to curb any chance I might become a hoarder I've tried to really be strict about what "meaningful" and "purposeful" means to me. Basically I need to feel more free without it for it to go. What about you? What does minimalism look like for you? #thebanisterhouse #minimalism 2w
  •   mer_mag I haven't read it yet @wrenandjames but I know about the "spark joy" part. I need to sit dusk and read it all soon 2w
  •   shannonweightphotography My fav thing to do is dejunk. If you ever do hold a yard sale, it would be like winning the jackpot for people with all your nifty treasures:) 2w
  •   mer_mag Thanks @livefreemiranda it's a find from @metacoleman_ I'm guessing that yes it's vintage 1w
  •   designlifekids I've been doing the same!! Purge and repeat. Feels so good. 1w

» LOG IN to write comment.

mer_mag That time we tried to go on a "spring" walk and saw little green but ended up loving the moodiness of it all anyway 2w

» LOG IN to write comment.

mer_mag I've been thinking and chatting with friends a lot about motivations and what drives us. My #tocmomretreat roomie Stacie of @amae.co and I chatted about this in Costa Rica and you can read her thoughts on it on her feed. It's also been a long term convo between @metacoleman_ and I who feel like we're sometimes more European than American when it comes to defining success. We'd rather sit in a cafe and talk art than hustle everyday. Don't get me wrong I value hard work I love getting immersed in a good project, but basically if I can't sit and calmly enjoy my life, my home, my people, on a fairly regular basis then I'm not so interested. It's also super important to me personally to have a handmade infused life. This sentiment is strong in my family and my homesteading sister has embraced this fully. We get so much joy in seeing artistry in every part of lives - our home, our furniture, our toys, our clothing, etc. whether we made it or someone we know or admire. Jon's very motivated by making a dif and does so every day with his students. He also loves understanding humans and telling stories through theatre. So naturally we're rolling in it . (No but seriously I sometimes wish we were both more motivated by money a little bit more - especially when it comes to our travel budget.) What about you? (Illustration from my #mersfairyfriends board books with @gibbssmithbooks out this fall) #merillustration 2w

» LOG IN to write comment.

mer_mag cat and mouse cousins . Really Miss M thinks of her like a sister. #inseparable #mermagdolls 2w

» LOG IN to write comment.

mer_mag How sweet is this little mamma with her #mermagdolls in her very own @grayers dress?! there are a few darling dolls on the @grayers website right now all dressed in matching fabrics to go along with your darling @grayers dresses. Each doll is oversized at 26" tall, each unique, hand sewn with a hand painted face. Link in profile. 2w

» LOG IN to write comment.

mer_mag Sneaky peeky... Also I'm looking to hire a few local seamstresses who feel comfortable with sewing and stuffing, etc. Tag a friend who might know a friend, etc. fun stuff coming down the pipe. #mermagdolls ( @chauntevaughn; styling @metacoleman_ ) 2w
  •   kchefchis I wish Val and i could, too far away of course, boo hoo......♡ @mer_mag 2w
  •   hippieindisguise Gorgeous!!! Wow! Your site looks amazing. And your dolls! Everything your touch becomes art. Love you! 2w
  •   tigerinajar It looks so good! Can't wait for Willa to pick out her little lady. 2w
  •   kenzoony I am interested if you are still looking! 1w

» LOG IN to write comment.

mer_mag My friends at @gathre are having a creative event with @thelandofnod on Sat. May, 21st and my #mersfairyfriends nature paper dolls are making an appearance. So if you're in the @southcoastplaza so cal area bring your little sprites and enjoy an afternoon of magical nature crafting. And grab one of @gathre's leather bonded mats while you're at it. I know we use ours for everything. Like everything. #mermagnaturecrafts 2w

» LOG IN to write comment.

mer_mag It's pretty much impossible for any of us to get back to normal life around here at #thebanisterhouse. I'm so mellow I can't understand why anyone would ask me to do anything other than sip coconut milk by the pool. #letsallgobacktocostarica #playfulbrownstones 3w
  •   amae.co I don't understand why you should have to. 3w
  •   mariegpalmer Exactly. I just asked my husband if I could just chill while he makes dinner bc sitting around has made me need more sitting around. 3w
  •   susieflandro I hear ya! It's been a rough day! 3w
  •   jahjeives my thoughts exactly. Why anyone expected me to do anything today was beyond me 3w

» LOG IN to write comment.

mer_mag He's anxious to put all his guys in the basket and fly them away.

I worked with @extraspace and @tropicofcandycorn on a craft that kids could work on each day while their mothers were away in Costa Rica for the #tocmomretreat. I thought a paper mache hot air balloon filled with kid drawn pics of mom and family passengers and a little flag that read "Mom, you lift is up" would be just the ticket. The kids were able to do little things on it each day and it also helped with the initial separation anxiety I think. My kids didn't finish theirs by the time I got home but that was ok because we were able to spend some time together finishing it up. And after committing myself to get a bit more messy with my kids (thanks @babyjives) and to being more single minded with tasks (thanks @hippieindisguise) I was more than happy to do this on mothers day. I was also happy to think of how my own mom lifts me up. There is so much she did for me growing up but right now I'm especially grateful for her support in all that she does right now. She's always so happy and proud of me, never criticizing and that means the world. She really does lift me up.
Happy Mother's Day to all you beautiful women who lift so many, including me with your goodness, kindness, creativity, humor and inspiring ways. #makeroomforlife
3w
  •   susieflandro So adorable! 3w
  •   amymaricle Ooh I love that!!! Inspired! 3w
  •   grayers @mer_mag In addition to being such an adorable craft it's a wonderful idea to soften separation anxiety for little ones. Will keep this idea in my neck pocket for my next work trip! 2w
  •   mer_mag It really did help so much @Grayers. Some of the moms told me their normally clingy kids were so excited to get started they were practically pushing their moms out the door. 2w

» LOG IN to write comment.

mer_mag Hey friends if you haven't had a chance to check out the @sycamore_co pop up shop today in Springville it's going on for another hour still I believe. I've got a few #mermagdolls there if you want to snatch one up and there are lots of Mother's Day goodies too. Grab a bite at the Art City Trolley when you're through and think of me wanting to be back home after missing the second leg of my flight home from Costa Rica. #longstory #SycamorePopUp 3w
  •   shannondw8 *missed. Ha! 3w
  •   barbaramiret Hi from Spain! When will be the #mermagdolls online shop available? Thank you! Have a nice day 1w
  •   mer_mag Hi @barbaramiret I'm working on getting the site up in the next few weeks. If you'd like one sooner just DM snd I can take s snapshot of what I have available. 6d
  •   barbaramiret Hi! I need the doll before October, I can wait, but If you can send me a snapshot to barbaramiretart@gmail.com It would be great. Thank you! :) 6d

» LOG IN to write comment.