Thursday, July 28, 2011

Mother of Beauty : Eva from Sycamore Street Press

Several months ago around Mother's Day I asked a few of my favorite creative online mothers to answer a few questions about motherhood. I am excited to share what Eva from Sycamore Street Press had to say! Her and her husband Kirk are super creative, talented and run the letterpress shop Sycamore Street Press in the beautiful mountainous valley in Heber City. They had a sweet baby girl, Ingrid back in November, recently launched their new letterpress collection, and are teaching letterpress classes with slots now open in September now too! I think Eva is such a cool and lovely person and I really enjoy what she had to share, hope you do as well...

1. What is your favorite part of being a new mom? Is it different than you thought?

My life feels complete. When Ingrid came along, something just clicked. I love the small moments. Like when she finishes nursing and looks up at me and starts to coo. Or when I go to get her up from a nap and am greeted by the biggest crinkly nose grin ever. I could just melt. I suspected it would be like this, but I still couldn't have imagined how much joy one tiny human could give me!

2. What is your daily schedule like now and how does blogging fit into that?

The first few months were like a marathon with unexpected twists and turns and an always receding finish line. But once she hit about 4 months, things calmed down and we were able to get on more of a schedule. It's been so nice! Ingrid wakes Kirk and I up every morning around 6:30 or so. I nurse her and we both play with her in bed for a little bit before we start the day. During her morning and afternoon naps, I try and get as much work done as possible. But often it feels like I am just getting started when she wakes up! While she's awake we play, read books, do housework, etc... And I take her and the dog on a walk down our country road, weather permitting. She goes to bed early -- about 5:30. When she does, I really get down to work. Lately, we've been really busy preparing for the launch of our 2011 collection, so I'll often be up until 11 or 12 editing images, writing descriptions, blogging, returning emails, etc... But of course, it can vary a lot from day to day! And I actually wrote an in depth "day in the life" post on my blog.

3. How do you find or seek after balance with being a mom and running Sycamore Street Press?

It's tough. I can have a hard time focusing on the task at hand. When I'm caring for Ingrid, I'll sometimes try to answer a few emails (much to her consternation). But in the evening when I'm at the computer working, I'll end up opening iPhoto so I can look at all the pictures of her!

Overall, though, Ingrid has really helped me live a more balanced life. Before I had her, I was such a workaholic. These days I take more time to spend with family, friends, and in nature. Sure, I don't get as much work done for Sycamore Street Press as when I spent 12-18 hour days at the studio. But I'm starting to realize that in the grand scheme of life, it's a good thing!

Another big step for me in finding balance is to get help. Since SSP began, I've teamed up with my friends Amy Shaffer, Kristin Mills, and Stephanie Ford to create the designs for our letterpress goods. Then, a couple of years ago, Kirk joined me full time in printing and running the business. It's made all the difference. This summer, we're looking to bring on a couple of interns as well. As for the domestic side of things, once or twice a week one of Ingrid's grandmothers will come and watch her. And I've started having someone come in and clean our place for a couple of hours each week. I'm not gonna pretend that I do it all on my own. I feel so grateful for the help I have!

 p.s. Have you seen this toast that Amy Poehler gave recently about how she's able to "do it all"?

4. What qualities in your own mother and/or women around you do you admire most?

Love. First and foremost. The way they'll do whatever it takes to help their children and family. My mom has always been that way. Also -- even with 4 kids at home, she was still able to find some time for creative projects. Painting, knitting, gardening, cooking, decorating... I grew up seeing my mom do these things, and it definitely influenced who I am and what I do today.

5. What is really inspiring you at the moment?

The resilience of the Japanese people. Instagram. Ingrid... and her mostly thrifted, gifted, or handed down wardrobe. Lykke Li. Our morning walks through the juniper tree forest. Spring, and all it's beautiful blossoms. Secrets from a Stylist. The fuss and flurry of launching a new collection. Pippi Longstocking. Miss Moss...

Thanks so much Eva!

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