Classic Play and Jen:12 Blogger Christmas

Sing it with me now:

On the first day of Christmas, Pars Caeli gave to me Lulu the Baker.

On the second day of Christmas, Pars Caeli gave to me Trouvé Magazine.

On the third day of Christmas, Pars Caeli gave to me Design Stitch Go.

On the fourth day of Christmas, Pars Caeli gave to me Design + Life + Kids.

On the fifth day of Christmas, Pars Caeli gave to me Donuts, Dresses, and Dirt.

On the sixth day of Christmas, Pars Caeli gave to me Minnow + Co.

On the seventh day of Christmas, Pars Caeli gave to me Bring Joy.

On the eighth day of Christmas, Pars Caeli gave to me Design Improvised.

On the ninth day of Christmas, Pars Caeli gave to me Frock Files.

On the tenth day of Christmas, Pars Caeli gave to me Raincoast Creative Salon.

On the eleventh day of Christmas, Pars Caeli gave to me Alexandra Hedin.

And, can I get a drumroll, pleeeeassse....

On the twelfth day of Christmas, Pars Caeli gave to me Classic Play!

First off, I can't believe that this series has come to an end, but nevertheless I am so excited to have Jen here to talk about her fabulous blog (so so much good stuff over their parents) and (hello...) new PBS series, Adventures in Learning.

Classic Play is the place where "having kids is cool" and in order for all that to happen you have to have one amazing mastermind behind it all. Jen has the wit and sincerity we parents need when transitioning children to the next stage of learning or getting into a project with your family. Cooking, playtime, crafts, reading - it's all infused with fun, and Jen's spirited illustrations are the cherry on top!

I guess it started when I had a toy/children's dress up line years ago and thought a blog would be a good promotional tool for it. Along the way, I fell in love with blogging—the conversations, the different skills it required, the friends I made. Eventually, we closed up our shop and I went all in for online publishing. 

What keeps me blogging?

The creative outlet, the opportunities that have arisen from the blog (even if the blog doesn't bring in revenue), the amazing contributors I work with, the pride I feel when I scroll through my site. I know it probably sounds vain, but it just makes me happy to look at and read it. 

Classic Play is a family lifestyle blog for creative types of parents or those who are looking for some creative ideas. I like to say it's always stylish, never fussy. As far as other places to find me? I host a pretty kickin' online series for PBS Parents called Adventures in Learning. It's one of the best parenting shows around. And I'm tooootally not biased at all ;) 

Hmm… this is a tough one!

I think this one, even though it's not a shiny happy piece, because it was the first time I ever tackled criticism. I wanted to ignore it, but I decided to be brave and tackle it head on. I've never done that before.

CORRECTIONS + CRITICISMS

This one was just plain ol' fun and helped me realize what type of parent I wanted to be—the kind who was cool with her kids being themselves

A CLONE TROOPER GOES GROCERY SHOPPING

And this one because I think it was the first time I felt brave enough to share my illustrations with people:

 

I'm going to be honest, I get nervous when I make big wishes; my family is wildly superstitious. But, I'm going to put on my big girl pants and make a wish. *deep breath* I would love to redesign the site to make it more functional. There is SO much fantastic content on there that gets lost in the shuffle. Other than that? I think I'll be happy with continuing to loosen up and experiment more. Blogging has allowed me to grow in so many ways. Hopefully 2014 will bring more of that growth even if it's uncomfortable (eek! I should probably be more careful what I wish for, yeah?)

Jen's energy for life and for motherhood is such an inspiration to me! She embraces everyday learning with ease, and injects a little something extra into every post. Whether you're a parent or not, you'll find inspiration on the overflow over at Classic Play.

Thanks all you beautiful bloggers for letting me feature your writing, your photography, your illustrations, your collages, and your hours and hours of sweat and tears. Blogging is an entire creative process, and I learn so much from ladies like these...

So here's to a wonderful 2014! My bloggy resolution for this year is to read more blogs. And comment more. Blog commenting has become akin to handwriting a personal letter. So I'm bringing it back with a gusto for 2014.

Watch out.

xoxo, MJ

P.S. You just have to come back tomorrow because I have a beautiful story to share with you and one biggo announcement.

P.P.S. #30sketch Day 5, for my middle school self

 

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