DesignForMiniKind

On Dads and Daughters

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Ken and Bee. My gracious, these two are total podmates. There’s so much I could say – so much I want to preserve about their relationship in these early, simple (but not easy) days. Our family is hovering in that space where toddler will and novice parenting collide, where we’re newly navigating the delicate balance of discipline and grace, structure and agility. And Ken is our fearless captain.

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Bee’s Favorite Things

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I get a lot of emails asking about what I keep in our home, the types of toys and books and activities that sprinkle our days. And I will first say this: although I am a minimalist, I am also a peacemaker. If it overjoys Bee’s uncle to gift her a thirty pound stuffed Minnie Mouse to display in our living room, and if said stuffed Minnie Mouse delights Bee, then welcome to the sofa, Minnie. Please don’t leave your cheese between the couch cushions, but otherwise, make yourself at home.

Indeed, there are things you don’t choose for your kids – items that are gifted with love that, sure, aren’t your style but are made tasteful by sentiment. The handmade outfits from grandmother, the battery-operated push toys, or if your child is anything like Bee, the plastic army men she perpetually steals from the nursery at church. (This child has very sticky fingers, word to the future.)

For everything else, we get a choice. And while she’s still tiny, I choose to surround herself with a small handful of beautiful, well-designed toys that we both love to share. Here’s the list!

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Dear Bee // 45

sick baby

Dear Bee,

We’ve been hit with the sick stick repeatedly, and it is making everyone crazy in this house. You caught your first super high fever a few weeks ago, but didn’t seem phased in the slightest – still jumping on the couch ottomans, higher than high – until boom – everything ached in your tiny little body. Bee, you were miserable. And you whined this sad little cow-sound and lost your appetite and gained a new distaste for everything, even your boyfriend Cailou. Suddenly, we couldn’t fix it.

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The Lovie Project

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I’ll admit; I had never heard the word ‘Lovie’ until I started reading parenting blogs, but I digress. Bee has thousands of stuffed animals she loves, from an odd neon cactus to a plump, plush bumblebee. They’re her staples, her “fwends,” as she calls them, and we haven’t tackled a bedtime routine without them in nearly a year. Indeed, there’s something special about your child’s first attachment to an inanimate object, whether blanket or animal, toy or truck. And on Valentine’s Day this year, the spotlight goes to the Lovie – the well-loved, forlorn objects of these little one’s undying affection. Here’s the deal:

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Pure Colors

adrien broom 8

“When we are children we seldom think of the future,” writes Patrick Rothfuss. “This innocence leaves us free to enjoy ourselves as few adults can. The day we fret about the future is the day we leave our childhood behind.”

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Full Circle

pottytraining

I Instagrammed this photo of Ken over the weekend after catching a glimpse of him being a father. I don’t know if you have children, or if you have husbands or someone in your life that you’ve lived with for so long that sometimes you look up over the steam of broccoli for dinner and realize that their face has transformed into something else – something wise. Aging is a slow growth, most of the time, with lots of waves below the surface that sometime rise into finer lines and then deeper wrinkles until you’re silver and gray and your hands begin to look a lot like the hands that raised you.

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Possibilities

koloro wagon on design for minikind.13

If I had my way, every piece of furniture would serve two, three – no, fifteen – purposes. It only seems fair, right? On a good day, we’re answering no less than 1,413 rapid fire questions in our heads (admittedly most of them self-imposed, let’s be honest) ranging from ‘Where did I put my keys” to “Why is there a bird’s nest in the bathtub” to “How do you get blackberry stains out of leather shoes” to “What are we having for dinner?” So naturally, our furniture should be as multipurposed as we are. Right?

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Dear Bee // 44

baby-in-bath

Dear Bee,

We are experiencing the weirdest season together. Yesterday I was watching you move our office furniture around (future interiors stylist, called it months ago) and I realized just how comfortable I am with you, how normal you seem to me. You seem like – dare I say it – my daughter. Like you’re going to grow up to become a child, then a teenager, and then a grown-up (but hopefully not too much of a grown-up). You’re an actual person.

I realize this sounds crazy, because of course you are a person, but Bee, babies are these funny little drops of dye that land in our water and swirl and swirl and swirl us around until they change our truest colors. And when you’re in it, you don’t see it. But then we open our eyes a little wider and blink a little harder and realize we’re not quite what we used to be. That you’re not quite what you used to be. We’re yellow now, Bee.

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Snow Days

design-for-minikind-

Well. It snowed like mad last week, making it increasingly difficult to squeeze productivity out of my being. Temps hovered around -14 for a few days and the whole town shut down. When it snows to such a degree, I often feel like God is giving me a white blanket to cover up with, handing me a fluffy quilted duvet and a pat on the head, rushing me back to bed to sleep for a few more hours.

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Shadows

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I’m winding down my work schedule for the year, and amidst a flurry of last-minute deadlines and scheduled projects, a reminder arose from the very unlikely place of an at-home photo shoot:

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