Filed under: Events, Growing Up Artsy, Shanda's Journey • September 5, 2014
Me and Beni

Me and Beni

If you saw me at the New York SCBWI conference or the Atlanta SCBWI conference, you might remember that I was expecting my second little one. I had lots of energy then, and I accomplished much on my “to do before the baby comes” list (including attending my first national SCBWI conference in NYC!) But soon after, I hit the wall… where it took ALL my energy just to do basic tasks like showering or tying shoes. Every woman who has ever been 8 months pregnant, knows this truth :) So for a while there, I couldn’t tie up the loose ends on my projects or submissions, because I was too distracted┬áto do my best work. I had to close my “book” (so to speak) to give this season of life all my attention…

And here she is… Beni Lois McCloskey! Named after her precious daddy (Ben) and his zealous grandmother (Lois).

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Beni Lois

Beni Lois

Beni Lois

A lot has changed adding a second child. Having 2 kids is pretty crazy! I still have pregnant brain, and have to write down things like when I bathed each kid last and if I took my vitamin yet. It’s like my short-term memory is struggling to function, but I hear that’s pretty normal… hopefully.

Our home also went through many changes leading up to Beni. My husband and I used to share an office/studio together upstairs, but we had to move our bedroom up there to make our old bedroom, Beni’s. My husband now rents an office outside of our home, and we squeezed out a little space in our living room for a studio for me. It’s tight, but good. Here are some photos of my new office…

Shanda's Studio

Shanda’s Studio (behind the couch)

 

Shanda's Studio

Shanda’s Studio

Dana Tanamachi print (frame made by my dad) hangs above the cradle (made by my Pop), in the living room near my desk.

Dana Tanamachi print (frame made by my dad) hangs above the cradle (made by my Pop), in the living room near my desk.

And here is Beni’s woodland room… (I was dead set on using lots of white for some reason :)

Beni's Room

Beni’s Room (Garland made by my cousin Audrey, the moss B made by my mother-in-law Barb, the table under the lamp was made by Ben’s grandmother Lois, the bookshelf was made by my grandfather Pop, and the painted furniture was painted by my mom!)

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I painted the flowers on the wood plank that my dad prepared above the mirror.

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My husband, Ben, trimmed our crepe myrtle and hung a branch!

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photo 3There you have it! Now I have 2 beautiful girls to inspire me! Hopefully, I’ll be posting new work again soon. I am working on it :)

Sisters!

Sisters!

Comments: »

  • This is so wonderful to see Shanda. Such beautiful photos of such a beauty. And her room!! So woodland-y. I love it. Tree branches and trunk slices : )
    Looks like Beni and her sister ARE your best work !!!

    xo,
    L.

    Comment by Lori Nichols — September 5, 2014 @ 5:26 pm
  • Thanks, Lori! I had fun with her room for sure! And yes, these girls are my most worthy project, indeed

    Comment by Shanda — September 5, 2014 @ 6:49 pm
  • So glad you are “back” sweet girl! I adore your awesome blog, decorating style, and your baby girls!

    Comment by Donna — September 5, 2014 @ 9:06 pm
  • Thanks, Donna!

    Comment by Shanda — September 5, 2014 @ 9:21 pm
  • Shanda, Beni’s room photos are Pinterest-worthy! I remember loving the room in person a few weeks ago, but the photos really look amazing! (And the kid doesn’t look so bad either.) ;-)

    Seriously, she is absolutely gorgeous… she and HJ really are beautiful little blessings. Congrats!!!

    Comment by Kim MacPherson — September 5, 2014 @ 10:02 pm
  • I love reading your blog!! Your girls are just the cutest. And I LOVE Beni’s room. Just precious!
    I wish I had half as much handmade items as you. Always nice to pass things down :)

    Comment by Ericka F — September 6, 2014 @ 2:24 am
  • You are amazing! Everything you touch and everything you do is inspirational and full of beauty–especially your two girls.

    Comment by colleen — September 6, 2014 @ 3:49 pm
  • Hi Shanda! I just came across your blog and wanted to say hello. I’m also an illustrator (albeit a rather new one) and always looking for beauty and inspiration and your style is oozing with both. Thanks for sharing and keep up the good work! :)

    Comment by Veronica El-Showk — September 8, 2014 @ 3:45 pm

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Shanda McCloskey, Children's Illustrator & Author