This Saturday I got to spend a wonderful morning exploring new places and enjoying the outdoors with my good friend, fellow card designer, and animal lover, Jenna of The Paper Wilderness! The cool, overcast weather (is fall finally here?!) was perfect and it was so nice to take a break and get some fresh air.
Jenna recently found out about Sherman Garden and Library so we decided to go take a look! On the way there, I passed by one of those huge bunny statues and since it was on both our ways home, we decided to check that out too! Below are photos and info on each of these places–we had so much fun!
Safety first–both activities were outdoors and in places where social distancing was possible. We both wore masks and only took them off a few times when we were still outside and 6+ feet apart. Being able to do this made me feel comfortable enough to visit both these places. The pandemic is still happening and I have been trying my best to move forward and live my life while keeping myself and those around me as safe. With that said, I know everyone’s comfort level is different–please always do what feels best for you!
This was such a beautiful garden and I loved that they had fun decorations up for Halloween! The library is currently closed so we probably spent about an hour or so walking around the gardens, looking for turtles (we found them!), admiring the different varieties of plants, flowers, succulents, and cactus, and enjoying all the colors, textures, and shapes!
If you plan on visiting, head over to their website for all the details but her are a few quick notes. You must have a ticket to enter which you can purchase ahead of time online on or in-person day of. It’s $5 per person and free for members and children under 3. There was plenty of free parking available. Masks are required at all times and social distancing encouraged whenever possible. They also had plenty of hand sanitizers available for use throughout the premises.
So much plant inspiration! My favorite was definitely the succulent and cactus garden, specifically the layout of the succulents. We both loved coming here so much that our new life goal is to visit ALL the botanical gardens, arboretums, etc. in the area!
I’ve driven by these bunny statues so many times and am so glad I finally stopped to check it out! I was also with the perfect person–Jenna is an amazing bunny mom to LouLou :)
I actually thought it was just a few statues that were part of the library but when we started walking around, we realized it was a whole park that included a sculpture exhibition!
It was such a nice trail with different sculptures along the path as well as picnic tables and benches, and plenty of grassy areas. We definitely want to go back so we can have a picnic there and I can bring Valentine. There’s actually a dog park on the other side of the bridge but we missed it and didn’t even realize there was a whole other side! I highly recommend stopping by–it’s both adult and kid friendly and a nice way to spend some time outside!
Another page of Inktoberis complete! Here’s days 9 – 16. My favorites to letter from this set were dune and rocket! Dune was inspired by The Little Prince and rocket from Hot Wheels :) But all the prompts were actually really fun to interpret!
If you’d like to see my Inktober entries in real time, head over to my Instagram. And while you are there, be sure to browse through the Inktober hashtag to support other artists and creators! It’s a great way to discover new people, art, and ideas!
As we wrap up the October mini challenge, I am getting ready to announce November’s! If you’d like to participate, be sure to sign up for the challenge emails by clicking here (this is different than Atiliay’s regular newsletters). Join me in continuing our daily letter practice!
This month’s Better Letters in 15 Mini Challenge is to join in on Inktober! Inktober is a daily challenge of putting ink on paper throughout the month of October. Inkotber challenge creator Jake provides a list of prompts making it really easy to show up everyday. By participating, you build a positive creative habit and this challenge helps you think and letter outside the box!
I am excited to tackle it again and to push my ideas even more! Initially I thought being prepared and having a rough layout would be helpful. I outlined boxes in my sketchbook and envisioned a word in each one. But as I started, my ideas had other plans! My old plans were thrown out and I went with whatever concept and idea came to mind!
The photo above is my first finished page which covers day 1 through 8. My favorites to letter were fish, wisp, and radio. I used a variety of tools including brush pens, gel pens, markers, and ballpoint pens!
If you’d like to see my Inktober entries in real time, head over to my Instagram. And while you are there, be sure to browse through the Inktober hashtag to see what other artists and creators are drawing. It is so fun and inspiring to see the different prompt interpretations!
It’s already Oct 24th as I post this (where did the month go!?) and I can’t believe there’s only a week left of the challenge and until Halloween! I’m already gearing up for the November mini challenge and will be announcing it soon! If you’d like to participate, be sure to sign up for the challenge emails by clicking here (this is different than Atiliay’s regular newsletters). I hope you’ll join me in continuing our lettering practice every month!
Besides candy and chocolate, another treat that I personally always welcome and think makes a great gift are beverages! Wine, cider, beer for those who drink and sparkling cider and fancy juices for non-drinkers and little ones.
I was really excited to try making some Halloween printable bottle tags and here it is! I hope it can help you celebrate this holiday season and encourage everyone to safely spread some Halloween cheer while eating, drinking, and being scary 👻 Just download, print, cut out, and put it on your bottle of choice!
The PDFs come with 2 tags per page with markings that indicate where you should fold. Use pencil to extend the line onto the tag before cutting out. You can score the line for easy folding or if you don’t have those tools, folding it regularly works just fine too! I cut a slit into the tag to make it easier to cut out the circle (see photo below).
To download this free PDF, just sign up for my newsletter and you’ll get instant access to the PDF Library! You’ll be able to find this download–and lots more–available there. Use the form below to sign up:
Halloween is almost here! Even though we will be celebrating differently this year, I personally am still really looking forward to it–especially dressing up with Valentine! 🎃
For this month’s free PDFs, I wanted to help you send some sweet treats to family, friends, and neighbors–I’ve designed 2 different “You’ve Been Booed!” cards that you can add to your goody bags!
Last year was the first time I was ever booed and even heard of such a thing! If you don’t know what booing someone is, it’s basically leaving Halloween treats on a neighbor or loved one’s doorstep as a fun surprise. I think it’s such an easy, thoughtful, and safe way to celebrate the holiday.
Download the PDFs then print and cut them out and they are ready to use! I recommend printing on heavyweight white, kraft, or colored cardstock. (If you print them out on white cardstock, you can have little ones help color and decorate them!)
To download the PDFs, just sign up for my newsletter and you’ll get instant access to the PDF Library! You’ll be able to find this download–and lots more–available there. Use the form below to sign up:
Here’s my completed Autumn template! It’s a mix of things inspired by the holidays happening this season along with some tasks I’ve been meaning to check off my to-do list. I’m happy to share that I’ve already started on several of these things so I’m feeling good about getting more than 6 items checked off for this season! 😊🍂
It’s been really inspiring seeing the items you are putting on your list! Some of my favorites include donate food, make a huge pile of leaves and jump in it, go apple picking, and paint leaves in my nature journal from @juiceboxhomeschool’s list and journal and shop small from Michelle’s list!
If you’re done with your list, feel free to share it with me–I love seeing them! You can email me a photo or tag me on your Instagram posts/stories @atiliay #atiliayPDFs.
If you’d like to create your own fall list, you can download the 2020 Autumn List template by signing up for the newsletter to get instant access to the PDF library:
The first newsletter of the month always includes your freebie PDF and the download for September was sent out earlier this month!
The September PDF is the 2020 Autumn List Template–use it to create a fun to-do list for the season in an interesting format! These list layouts are inspired by lettering layouts that combine different fonts and text on one page. You can fill it out regularly or play around with writing in cursive and print or try out different fonts whether it’s a block or bubble style or brush lettering! Take a look at finished list over on my blog.
Each template is 5″x7″ and each PDF comes with 2 on the sheet–fill one out and send the other to a friend or share it with a family member or roomie. You can keep each other accountability or use this as a reminder of some of the things you want to do together. It’s also a fun project for kids and teens!
If you are a newsletter subscriber, check your inboxes for this email or find it in the PDF Library. If you’d like to subscribe to get instant access to these PDFs as well as the entire collection of free downloads, sign up for Atiliay’s newsletter below:
Each month I send out 2-3 newsletters: one with the month’s free download, another with give back, shop, and product updates, and the last one with the time capsule letter PDFs and shares (links, articles, etc.) for the month.
As summer winds down and makes way for fall, I’m looking back at my 2020 Summer List–it looks like I was very all or nothing. The things I did get done, I really got done and the things I didn’t were basically left untouched! 😅 Here’s a little bit more about each one–
THINGS I CHECKED OFF – YAY!
Visit the South Coast Botanical Garden with Valentine OK, so I ended up not actually going to this particular place but my goal with this was to get out with Valentine and I was able to do that this summer! We went for a hike in Palos Verdes, we hung out at the Bluffs in Long Beach, and we had a few safe/socially distanced/masked hang out with my close friends (along with many car rides to the post office, pick up food, etc.) But I now have an eye out on dog-friendly nights at the garden and hope to check it in the future!
Launch Year 2 of Better Letters In 15 I am really excited that not only did I launch and complete year 2 of the Better Letters In 15 Challenge, but I also launched monthly mini-challenges! The phrase for this year’s challenge was “Trust Your Creativity” and the first mini challenge for the month of September is back to basics–practicing the alphabet and creating a lettered piece with it. You can sign up here which will then give you access to all the emails, free PDFs, and challenge prompts! I’ve been sharing my practice and progress over on Instagram!
Hike Eaton Canyon Due to the crazy heat I was not expecting, I didn’t hike Eaton Canyon but I did hike a Palos Verdes trail! My goal was just to get out in nature and so I consider this done because of that :) It was a beautiful day and we got there early enough where the heat wasn’t an issue. I do look forward to going to Eaton Canyon though–I haven’t been there in many years but it used to be one of my favorite hiking places!
Unpack One Box It will be a year in December since I moved here and yes, I STILL have unpacked boxes! I wanted to go through at least one box this summer and I spent a Saturday afternoon unpacking jewelry/jewelry boxes and sorting through everything into keep, donate, and toss categories.
I am REALLY on a mission to only keep things I use and need and to get rid of as many things as possible so it felt really good to get this done! I still have several boxes to go and hope to tackle them all by the end of this year! Getting through just one box does encourage me and make me feel like there’s a light at the end of the tunnel!
Donate 10 Items of Clothing Again, I am really trying to pare down! When it comes to clothes I think I’ve done a pretty good job of that but there are always things I don’t wear anymore or can’t let go of due to sentimental reasons so I thought I’d try to find 10 items to donate. I ended up being able to let go of much more and filled up a trash bag!
I’ve been trying to go through my clothes more often so they are in the best condition possible when I am donating and can have a good chance at a second life! My ultimate goal is to create a capsule wardrobe and no longer have to get rid of or get more clothing items.
PS: If you have a hard time getting rid of clothes, I have found that taking a picture of it, or you in it, or making sure you have a photo of you in it can really help with letting go!
THINGS I DIDN’T CHECK OFF
Learn 10 Chinese Characters At the time when I had created my list, I was on a roll learning Mandarin on Duolingo. I thought I’d take it a step further and really try to learn 10 characters like the back of my hand. I went as far as choosing the 10 words and making flashcards but they ended up sitting on my desk–oops! I still would love to learn these words–they are all food related so I can hopefully order vegan food the next time I am in Taiwan–so I think I’ll try to stick them up in my kitchen and try to familiarize myself with them!
Create Painting with Art Meditation Kit This is actually something I was really looking forward to doing! Originally I planned to do it on my birthday as a fun way to kick off the new year but since it landed on a regular work day, I wasn’t able to find time to squeeze it in. I hope I get to open it up and try it soon though! If you’re interested in learning more about these awesome art boxes, head over to Masterpeace Box for all the details!
Do 5 Push Ups I am a member of Bounce Society (super fun trampoline full body workouts) and have been working out regularly but man push ups are such a struggle for me!!! I would love to be able to do just 5 push ups really well and go from there! My plan was to do 1 push up a day and build on that but I ended up having to pause working out altogether for a week or so and really fell off the bandwagon on this one! It’s still a goal of mine though and I think in order to succeed at this one I need to create an actual schedule so I can slowly but consistently build up to the 5.
Release Brush Lettering Kit I’m super frustrated with myself that this has taken me so long to put together! I think there are two reasons I have been getting in my own way for this one and I think it’s because I want it to be perfect and I am worried about translating a live in-person workshop into a kit. But I know these are just things that are creating resistance and I am determined to finish and release it so I can share brush lettering with more people!
Overall I’m really happy I was able to do at least 6 out of the 10 things and I’m not beating myself over what I missed! It’s been helpful just having the list and putting it on my fridge since that means I see it *several* times a day lol.
Fall is just a few days away and I am looking forward to making my fall list! If you’d like to join me, you can download the 2020 Autumn List template by signing up for the newsletter to get instant access to the PDF library:
I have heard how blue light blocking glasses can really help keep our eyes from getting tired or strained and decided to give them a try! Between the computer and phone, I know I am staring at a screen a lot more than I should and it’s probably not so good for my eyes. I’ve been wearing them consistently for about 5 days now and personally feel like they have made a difference! I got this Maxjuli pair because it had really good reviews and were very affordable ($6.99)! I am definitely going to keep on wearing them.
I received a Vegancuts subscription as a birthday gift from my friend Faith and I have really been enjoying them! I just got my second box and wanted to share the contents. It includes both sweet and savory vegan snacks, a beverage, and part of the proceeds from each box supports animal sanctuaries! Most of the snacks are made from natural ingredients or organic and are pretty health conscious (so if you’re looking for brownies and chocolate chip cookies this probably won’t be the right fit). This is such a fun treat for yourself or as a gift to your plant-based, animal loving friend!
Melissa of Poppi Seed Market and I are very excited to bring you this Free/Fundraiser “Boo!” Lettered Pumpkin Workshop! Join us for one of two virtual workshops and learn how to letter “boo!” in calligraphy and letter it on to a pumpkin. 100% of donations collected will be used to plant trees to help restore CA forests lost in the wildfires. $1 = 1 tree planted through the organization, OneTreePlanted. Donation amounts are completely up to you and if you are unable to donate, you are still welcome to join! Click on the link above to learn more and sign up. We invite you to join us for some Halloween fun and help us reach our goal of planting 100 trees!
I learned Friday evening of the passing of Ruth Bader Ginsburg. Thank you to Justice Ginsburg for all that she has done. I hope we can continue do all that we can to continue the work she has done and honor her legacy. The link above is to a New York Time’s article and I also wanted to share Ruth Bader Ginsburg in art and words from The Washington Post. The beautiful portrait in the above photo was created by Desiree Kelly.
This weekly Friday series is a simple way of documenting and sharing. To learn more about how it came to be, read the the very first post. To see all Friday posts, click here. I hope you like it! :)
Valentine loves coming with me to drop off mail at the post office! I think it’s a nice way to break up the day and go for a quick ride. Sometimes when we get back, she’s not ready to go home and won’t budge from her seat! I’ll have to go around, open up the passenger door, and carry her back in lol.
I’m very excited that Sweet Deetails will be carrying Atiliay’s cards for a cause! Dien’s order helped to provide 40 meals and I am really glad we could do some good together :) I can’t wait for the grand opening! If you are in the Cerritos/Artesia and surrounding area and need a cake, be sure to check out Sweet Deetails!
3. ZOOM FUN
I had back to back Zoom meetings earlier this week and had so much fun at both! The first one was an online workshop I taught, hosted by Masterpeace Box. It has been a long time since I’ve done a workshop and it was really fun to be able to do it online and create together!
The other meeting was a surprise virtual bridal shower for my friend, Erin! Although we can’t gather in person, it was so much fun to be able to celebrate her this way! We made signs, sent her a package with a bride tiara and sash, we coordinated our outfits, played games, and gave her our best marriage advice! I think the best part was the “How Well Does The Groom Know The Bride?” game–we had to secretly get the groom in on it and hearing their answers was hilarious! Congrats, Erin!
With everything happening, sometimes I forget how good it feels to connect face to face! Get some of your fave people and schedule a virtual meeting :)
This past week has felt so eerie and strange with the sun glowing red and the sky a grey orange instead of clear blue. It makes me so sad that CA is on fire again and I can’t help but think of what humans have done to cause this, whether it’s a party trick that went wrong or global warming. I feel especially sad for the wildlife that has been affected–they are just innocent bystanders. Here are a few ways we can help: Herd and Flock Animal Sanctuary, One Tree Planted, and California Fire Foundation.
“Michael Hingson was on the 78th floor of the North Tower of the World Trade Center on September 11, 2001. He says the first indication that something was wrong was the sound of a muffled explosion. Then the building began to tilt, and he felt the floor drop like an elevator. But Michael Hingson didn’t panic because his guide dog, Roselle, was calm.” Click the link to listen to this podcast episode from This Is Love.
This weekly Friday series is a simple way of documenting and sharing. To learn more about how it came to be, read the the very first post. To see all Friday posts, click here. I hope you like it! :)