Saturday, July 2, 2011

my hiatus and little birdie secrets birthday bash!

 Happy birthday to us! Can you believe Little Birdie Secrets is 3?


Five years ago our little family moved from Salt Lake to Seattle. Five years ago my husband started the Orthopaedic Surgery residency program at the University of Washington and I became a residency widow. Alone in a new city with two tiny kids, I learned to find my way around the crazy streets and found all the best parks and explored every beach within 20 miles. I learned to quilt. I honed my crochet skills. I spent a lot of time crafting while my husband was on call.
 
Then I met the most amazing girls who loved crafting and cooking and wanted to help me start a blog. We crafted because we loved it and wanted to share what we were making with other crafters. Little Birdie Secrets was born. That was three years ago. I can hardly believe it!

Then gas prices skyrocketed. Groceries went up. Interest rates went up. The student loans from medical school came due. Crafting now became my part time job. We introduced sponsors and affiliates to help us pay the expenses of running a craft blog, and to have a little extra for our families in this tough time.


We've heard a few comments from readers lately complaining that there aren't enough crafts here anymore. That you're seeing more giveaways and deals than tips and tricks. I know. I know and I'm sorry. It's difficult feeling that I'm not living up to others' expectations, that I'm letting our readers down. If I had been smarter (and had more time) I would've explained a few things like Vanessa and even Emily have recently. Sometimes readers don't get to see the human side of bloggers, but we're regular people, with families and responsibilities and life changes. And craft blogging is a very time consuming hobby. I apologize that I haven't shown you more of that. So here's why you haven't been seeing the crafts you've come to expect from us.

1. I've been busy creating a human. That's right--baby #3 is on the way! HOORAY! I cannot tell you how thrilled our little family is about this. However, no one told me about one crazy side effect. You've heard of food aversions during pregnancy, like you get sick at the very thought of some foods? Well, during the last almost four months, I have had an aversion to crafting. I know! It is terrible! Way worse than morning sickness and heartburn. I think it has something to do with the tiredness factor. By the time I have some free time to work on a project, I'm so tired that all I want to do is fall on my bed in a pile. And most nights that's exactly what I do. But I'm getting my energy back, and very soon you're going to see lots more maternity and baby projects here. Sweet!

2. I'm preparing to become a Midwesterner. We're moving to Iowa! The past month I've been sorting and piling and selling and packing to get us to ready to move across the country, all by myself. In addition to my other part time job, taking care of my family, volunteering at church, and trying to spend precious last moments with friends, this has left little time for crafting or blogging. Jessica has filled in for me by giving you lots of fun deals and giveaways (she is amazing!), but I haven't posted more than a handful of projects, and I'm sorry. The good news is I won't have to work two part time jobs to help support our family, and I'll be just a few minutes away from where Vanessa will be! I'll have lots more time to craft (and there's a Hobby Lobby a mile away from my house!), so the crafting goodness will begin again soon!

This week my husband graduated as a fully-trained orthopaedic surgeon. I am so proud I'm bursting. He has worked harder than even I can imagine, and done it on almost no sleep. Plus kept up his family, church, and social responsibilities. Man does he need a break! In two weeks we leave for Iowa. We'll be making the trek a family vacation, taking seven days to drive from Seattle to Iowa City, stopping at National Parks and amusement parks along the way. We wanted to do something extra special for our three year blog birthday, but obviously that will be a little difficult with all my crafting supplies packed away and on the road. But have no fear. It's still going to be good!

We love to par-tay. So we've gathered our favorite crafting bloggers from around the blogosphere to help us celebrate! All month you'll see great crafting ideas from some of the best artists and crafty bloggers out there, plus awesome giveaways, prizes, a survey, and a makeover for the blog is in the works! We're not going to let a crazy move and a little aversion to crafting ruin our fun!

We hope you'll forgive my little hiatus and continue to stop by, to be inspired. Thank you for three years of support. For reading, for commenting, for sharing your projects with us. You are the reason we have made it these three years. Here's to many more!

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52 Comments

52 Responses to “my hiatus and little birdie secrets birthday bash!”

ZiaMaria said...

So happy for you and your family. Thank you for all that you have done on this wonderful blog over the past few years, I have learned so much. Sounds like you have your life in the proper perspective. God's blessing on you and your family.

Kirsten W. said...

Congrats on the baby and the new adventure in Iowa! We live in Iowa City, so let me know if you need any tips or someone to show you around. Make sure to check out Home Ec Workshop in Iowa City, a great fabric & yarn store. You should also plan a trip to Des Moines in August to visit the State Fair!

Jennifer said...

Congratulations to you and your husband! I grew up in Iowa City and still miss it sometimes. I hope you love it there!

CrochetBlogger said...

Congrats on all the changes!

Emily said...

Congratulations on the baby and on your husband finishing residency... as a residency widow myself I know that you have also been working very hard the last few years. Good luck with the move.

Marisa said...

I actually cried when I read that post... it's just so familiar! I'm impressed that you've kept up with the crafting blog as well as you have, you have done much better than I did while supporting my husband through dental school & beyond, and being pregnant! Seattle is my home town so I'm glad you enjoyed it and I'm definitely jealous of that Hobby Lobby!!

Jude said...

Congratulations - on baby, house move, and to your husband. Been lurking for months but just wanted to say well done. Jude.x

Randi~Dukes and Duchesses said...

Congratulations on all the big news in your life!

Karen said...

Congrats on the baby and your husbands graduation! How amazing that you have done all of that. Your blog rocks and remember family, church, and friends are more important than the blog and you can't please everybody! You gals are great and I LOVE your blog!!

dannyscotland said...

I don't think you need to apologize for a thing! You have been very busy, and I'm hoping that most people's comments have been kind; I for one understand and recognize that all these wonderful blogs we love to read and look for every day are run by people who have lives outside the internet! Important lives!! Much more important than the blog, no matter how much we enjoy and love it. So please enjoy your hiatus, your moving vacation, and your 3rd pregnancy!!! And if your aversion doesn't lessen up soon, don't worry. It will be okay!

mama dub said...

Congratulations on all your exciting news! From a lifelong Iowa resident, welcome! Iowa is a great place to live and Iowa City is a fun place. Good luck with the move and settling in your new home.

DJ Rose said...

Congrats on everything! I must say that UW's ortho dept has a special place in my heart. 15 years ago I broke my back and was flown to Harborview and interns and residents and students and the amazing Dr Mirza put me all back together.

I loved Seattle the 7 years I lived there. And we always go back (my in-laws are still there). Have fun on your new adventure.

Brook said...

Congrats on moving to the heartland!

Lori said...

So happy for you and your family. We do understand about being tired and having all of those things to do with moving. Enjoy your trip and get plenty of rest. Thanks for sharing with us. Blessings, Lori

Claudia said...

Oh wow! so many changes! good luck on all them! :)

Little Lizard King said...

Congratulations on every level!!! It sounds like wonderful changes are in store. I am very envious that you husband is finished with graduate school - if only.... I hope all his hard work will pay off. You all certainly deserver it! xoxox

Deanna said...

Congratulations for all the new life-changing events! My husband just graduated from a radiology residency here in Iowa City and we are staying here for one more year for a fellowship. It is a great area out here and I'm sure you will love it. Will your husband be working at U of I hospital?

Good luck with the upcoming move!

Lindsey said...

Congrats on finally being done with residency, it must be a great feeling! My hubs is a PGY2 in gen surg, I can totally sympathize with everything. Good luck with the move and enjoy having a spouse for a couple weeks until he starts. Congrats on the pregnancy :) If you ever head over to Ames, IA you should check out Hickory Park for some great BBQ meat.

PharmaMom said...

Congratulations on all of your exciting news!! Safe travels to the Midwest (and welcome!!) and hope that little one of yours enjoys the ride! (Nicole @ babyfoodscoops.com)

katharine_Finley said...

I have just recently discovered your blog and I love it! Congrats on the new addition to the family - taking care of yourself should be top priority! :) Good luck with the move.

Nats said...

Wow, Omedeto to Elder S! He was one of the best APs I had in Okayama.
Good luck to you and your family as you move on to the next chapter in your life!

Whatever Dee-Dee wants said...

Wow. Big changes. Congratulations!

Michelle said...

I love your blog and actually have stumbled upon it only recently! You will LOVE the Midwest! Good luck on your move and all the life changes!

Caren said...

Wow, that's a whole bunch of stuff going on over there! My youngest is almost 6 months old, and I've lost my crafting mojo more than once in the past few years. (That may have something to do with the 4 pregnancies I've had in the past 5 years). I'm in Ohio, so we'll practically be neighbors :)
Congratulations on your big news, move, and bday! Happy blogging :)

michelle523 said...

I am so happy two of my favorite craft bloggers are moving to Iowa. I grew up in Iowa and loved it. We now live in Illinois but go to see family in Iowa often. Check out the children's museum in the CoralRidge Mall. Check out the mall too. I love it. There is a great indoor play area too. I assume your hubby will be at U of I hospitals and that is an amazing place to be. Congrats on moving to a wonderful area and the new baby.

Flmgodog said...

Congratulations on the baby, the Iowa move (we are excited to have you) and the blog birthday!
Iowa City is a nice place to live (I graduated from the U of I. Lots of fun things to do in Iowa espcially if you have never been a midwesterner.

thetessaroo said...

Congratulations, Mandy! Wowee! So much going on and so much to celebrate! I'm so happy for your little family.

dutyno2 said...

Congratulations!! Good luck with the move, and hoping all the early pregnancy issues disappear and you have a comfy few months ahead!

I'm new to your blog, I stumbled across it about a month ago while searching for hair bow tricks. I love it and visit it often, and I definitely can't wait til you're able to post more often! <3

Tova said...

So many wonderful changes and advances! Much luck with all of those new projects...we'll be waiting to see more.

The Ludwig's said...

I've been following your blog this past year and had NO idea your husband was an ortho resident! Been there, done that and survived! He did undergrad and med school in Iowa, residency in Wisconsin and fellowship in Alabama. We have dear friends that live in Iowa City and we actually looked at jobs there, too! We wish you the best of luck.

paula said...

Enjoy the trip. We will paitiently wait for more wonderful inspiration.

Angela said...

Congrats on all the changes! I work full-time as a teacher and design jewelry/craft/blog on the side! I totally get your explanation of how life just happens and priority takes over...I too go thru periods like this and feel guilty so THANK YOU for making me feel like I am not alone. Good luck and I will keep reading and following! ;)
Angela
Avenue{A}

Sleen said...

Good luck to you as you embark on this new, exciting chapter in your lives. Congratulations on baby #3! I am sure your readers will understand and be waiting for you when you're ready and able to post more. The Midwest is awesome!!!

Tiffany said...

Congratulations! What wonderful news. I am currently living in Iowa with my husband and daughter (soon to be daughters!) It will be an adjustment but you will love it! And on a side note...is your maiden name Ivy by any chance? You look so familiar! Good luck on your move!

Linda said...

Welcome to Iowa! Here's hoping you love it. You will also be close to a great scrapbooking store as well as living in the most eclectic city in our beautiful state. Enjoy!

Crafty Critter said...

I have been on that residency widow road. My husband graduated in 2004. While we stayed in the same state for residency, and even his first job, we moved to Mississippi in 2010 so he could work in an office instead of a hospital! :) It has been an adjustment and I have found comfort in crafting and following several crafting blogs. :)

Good luck to your family and you have earned the right to a break! Medical school is hard on a family and those who can make it through deserved to be commended. Congratulations!

Kristel T.M. said...

Congratulations on everything! I think you have a perfectly acceptable excuse for not doing crafts right now! It's given me a chance to catch up on your past projects since I'm kind of new to reading your blog.

kendascrafts said...

Congrats on the baby and the move! Iowa is great you will love it! I came here to go to school, and haven't left. It is a great place to raise a family.

shay said...

Congratulations on all that is in your life! Good luck in Iowa City! You'll meet lots of great people. Enjoy Nauvoo! Keep making your cute hats, you'll need them this winter! :)
~~Shayla from Coralville ;)

Gooseberry Patch said...

So much excitement and so much to congratulate you on...where to begin? Thanks for sharing a peek behind the scenes and letting us in on all the recent developments and a BABY ON THE WAY! We wish you all the best and can't wait to see what you'll have in store for us once you're settled, rested (ha!) and back to your crafty goodness. Promising to be patient! :)

Michelle@Somedaycrafts said...

Mandy!!!! yeah! Yeah for being pregnant and yeah for Christian graduating. He has gone to school for way too long!!!! My brother is an "joint salesman" and he tells me how hard orthopedic surgeons work and how much they have to learn and stay on top of everything. I'm thrilled you will get to spend more time as a family and have a new little one to welcome to the world. Congrads again (and tell that to your hubs!!!) Love ya!

Erin said...

Congratulations to you and Christian!! You are amazing...and doing it all pregnant. I am expecting baby #4 - and man, it has taken a toll. Good luck with your move, and I can't wait for your 'baby' crafts!!

Heather said...

going to miss you!!! i love this blog & i can't wait for all the fun new things!
Congrats!!!
love you tons!
xo,
H.

Nicole said...

Happy Birthday to your blog and a congratz for you and your family! For moving and your hubby, then baby #3! Big days ahead. I love following your blog but I also feel that your family is your priority! I totally get the no crafting with being pregnant, I did that with my 3rd also.

Debbie said...

Congratulations!!

when I was pregnant I had an aversion to my mother in law.

shes great, I love her. i just couldnt stand the idea of having her around when I was pregnant.
She was a 12 hour drive away but that didnt matter- I would cringe at the idea of her visiting.
how awful! it went away shortly after birth though!

Little Birdie Secrets said...

So overwhelming to read all your sweet comments! Thank you! Hi to Erin, Michelle, Tiffany (Ash, right?), Heather, Tess, Nats, and all my new Iowa City friends! And it's so good to hear from other resident wives. What a crazy ride, but worth it because we love our guys so much!

Kates said...

Congrats and Welcome to Iowa! You will love it here. Iowa City is a great town! I live in Davenport which isn't far! Best of luck on the move!

Cortney Chambers said...

I'm so happy for you guys! I have to admit, this post made me tear up---I feel a crossroads in life right now too, children are getting older, it's a good time! It will be a fun experience for your family & so exciting with a new baby.
Love & miss you--hope to catch up soon!

Mom Taxi Julie said...

Congrats to your husband and have a great vacation!

HideAndGoPeep said...

Goodness! So many changes! I wish your family the best. It is good to know that there is a human side to these wonderful blogs out here that I love to read (yours being one). When I started my little blog a few months ago, I claimed it wasn't going to be a huge thing. It's just, "Let's see where this goes." When everything gets settled down, and you get some extra time, come back and see us! Congratulations on all these HUGE changes!

Sally said...

I'm also an orthopedic residency widow, but my husband just started his second year so I've got a ways to go. Everytime I talk to or hear of a woman who has made it to the end it gives me hope though. Congratulations to both of you!!! And I totally understand the crafting aversion while pregnant. I'm about ready to pop #4 and there were several months in there when the thought of making anything made me almost as sick as the thought of eating beef!

Mary F said...

Funny that I'm just reading this now, given that you and I are both on the same baby train boat! Never fear I lost my mojo too with the crafting-and I WORK for a craft store-now that we know everything is going to be OK with our baby boy I'm getting that mojo back-hope your settling in okay ;-)

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