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Moms are the coolest June 08 2017

(image by ElyFair Photography from our Love Mom Well Event)

(Photo by ElyFair Photography from our Love Mom Well event)

One of my absolute favorite things about the shop is some of the relationships that I have made with my customers. Molly is on the top of that list. Every time Molly comes in the shop, its like she is brining the sun in with her. She is joyful and calm but honest about being a mom. Those traits are some of my favorite combinations. Being a mom is awesome but so crazy hard. I am so encouraged when I am able to have an honest conversation with another mom about the struggles that come with these cuties. 

One day in particular that stands out to me was a day when I was complaining to Molly about how my husband was about to go abroad for 14 days and i was dreading it. Molly listened so patiently and was super encouraging. She then told me that her husband would be soon deployed for 5 FREAKING MONTHS!! She didn't tell me this to downplay my experience or to make me feel bad, she was just relating to me. I saw her often while her husband was deployed and she just handled it. I am sure it was hard,emotional, and there were plenty of days where she wished she could throw in the towel but she handled it.

(photo by Amanda Zabrocki Photography)

When her husband finally returned, they all wore our "all the emotions" tee as they greeted him. I can't think of a more perfect tee. It was one of my greatest privileges to be a very very very very very very very  very small part of such a special day.

(Photo by Amanda Zabrocki Photography)

Anyways, Molly was sweet enough to answer some of my questions for our blog! Hope you enjoy reading !


I have Natalie,who is 3 years old and Samantha, who is 1 1/2.

 Are you working, not working, worked until you had kids, working with kids or whatever other version of of career that I am not thinking of? 

I am sort of working! I studied communication design at Texas Tech, but instead of entering the traditional work force right away, I joined the Air Force Spouse life and moved to Mississippi with my husband right after college. Since then, I have been doing family photography and picking up freelance design jobs here and there.

What brought you to Oklahoma?

I am from El Paso, TX. I moved to Oklahoma City when my husband was stationed at Tinker Air Force Base. I didn’t know what to expect from this city, but it has proven to completely steal my heart! The local community is so vibrant and kind, and really seem to take care of each other. I absolutely love that.

 What does your day to day look like?

My days start by waking up with Samantha, who always ends up in our bed at some point in the night. Natalie joins us shortly thereafter and then we’re all up for the day. Each week day changes, but it ALWAYS starts with LOTS of coffee and Kid Netflix. I used to make French Pressed coffee for myself every morning but I’ve succumbed to the Keurig because it brings me coffee faster. I try to get out for at least a little bit during the day, whether it be to the park or even mundane grocery shopping, because I start feeling really stuck in my house if I stay in too long. As a consequence, my house is in an almost constant state of disarray.

 What is the greatest parenting hack you have discovered as a parent?

I bow down to Netflix and Amazon Prime video. I ended up being a mother who has absolutely zero qualms about screen time. I’d like to say my girls only watch educational videos, but they also watch a LOT of Dinotrux and sort of weird videos of toys being unboxed on YouTube kids.


What is your biggest challenge as a mom?

My biggest challenge has been holding on to my true sense of self. It is incredibly easy to get lost in the role of MOM, or even WIFE, and then lose myself. I love both roles of course, but I also miss aspects of the person I used to be. Now that the girls are getting older, I’m finding time to uncover dormant parts of myself.

What is something simple/silly/helpful that gets you through a tough day…or any day?

I definitely value time spent with loved ones (or by myself!) somewhere out in the city. It isn't enough to have coffee or wine at home, or even at a pretty park— being a part of the city's bustle really energizes me. For example, I’m currently at Hank’s Coffee & Wine in Midtown while the girls are at school, writing up these answers. Visits like this are very restorative for me.

 Are you and extrovert/introvert/both and what challenges does that bring as a parent?

I am an introverted extrovert. I think if my friends knew how many introverted tendencies I have they’d be surprised, because I tend to be very outgoing in crowds and during events, and am not afraid to strike up conversations with strangers. It takes a LOT to psych myself up for such occasions though, and I do crave quiet time with my husband and girls. I am perfectly fine going out and doing things on my own, but am readily putting together playdates or lunches with my friends. It’s an ever-shifting dynamic.

 What is that thing you have been dreaming of in the back of your head, big or small? It could be something as simple as a bath to yourself or changing Oklahoma schools or whatever.

I would like to really get my photography and design career kicked off. I have felt stagnant for years, which I also equate to a sort of betrayal to my talent and how many people helped cultivate it. I feel rusty and out of the game, but I just recently claimed howdymolly.com, so now I HAVE to make my website!

I also have some fun ideas that combines my love for design and my more geeky side. I would love to see that realized soon.

 What is something really important that your kid(s) grows up knowing? You can’t say that you love them! That is too easy.

I want the girls to feel that they can come to my husband and me with anything. Between my husband and me, we have a lot of the basic pitfalls of being a young adult covered, so I know we can listen to them with empathy and hopefully without any judgement. They need a safe place, and I hope they can find that in us.

Also, I want them to realize “NO” is a complete sentence and that they don’t owe politeness to ANYone unless they give it willingly. I’d like them to be black belts but we’ll see where we get with that!

The girls are probably also learning that it’s ok to make mistakes and break things, because I am doing both ALL the time.

 What has been the hardest phase/thing you have gone through as a parent? It can be related to your kids or not.

I guess I’m in a perpetual phase of not knowing how to “mom” or how to “adult.” I deal with a lot of anxiety and it has inspired me to develop a lot of unhelpful coping mechanisms. I work constantly to overcome them, and even though most of the time I fall into the same bad habits, I’m grateful for a husband and kiddos who love me all the same. Now, to not pass those things onto the girls!


Everything Beautiful May 08 2017

Years ago, I was thinking about hiring for the shop, when my pal, Annie, told me about her babysitter, Heather. Annie said she was kinda shy, which is not a great quality for someone whose main job is talking to people, so I wrote her off and continued looking.

Heather ended up coming into the shop later on that week and the rest is pretty obvious. I liked her from the beginning, mainly because she laughed at all of my jokes. I had no idea what an incredible friendship I would be gaining when I hired her. She is the friend I call when I need to be picked up from the airport or I suddenly have the evening to myself. My kids love her and my husband and I get a kick out of dragging her along during our family outings. She is part of our family. I think we have asked her to come live with us probably ten times by now. We love Heather.

 

So with all of that said, adding Everything Beautiful to the shop feels like such a natural thing to do. She has used our studio space in the back for years and I have loved watching her grow as a florist. Her talent inspires me and I freaking love having flowers in the shop all the time. So cheers to Heather and your beautiful arrangements! Hope you guys are as excited as we are.

 

 

Here is how things will work so far:

We will have flowers by the stem and pre-made bouquets available every week starting on Thursdays. Arrangements will always be available for preorder(order on our website or Everything Beautiful’s) and can be ready to pick up the next day. There will probably be some adjusting here and there as we figure out what works best. We will let you guys know of any big adjustments.

Blooms for everyone!

All photos taken by the crazy talented Magnolia Adams!


Momming ain't easy May 02 2017

I have been dreaming for months now of starting a blog where moms can be real about motherhood; the highs and lows and everything in between. So here it goes. Hope you guys hate it. wink!

 My pal, Amy Lester, has always been the mom I imagined when I started dreaming of this blog. Watching Amy as a mom has inspired and challenged me, mainly because she is willing to be raw and honest about parenthood and because she and Justin have a delightful sense of humor. So here it goes!

Amy and her kiddos( Photo by Elyse Fair from our Love Mom Well event)

(Amy and her kiddos at our LOVE MOM WELL event. PC: ElyFair Photography)

How many kids do you have and what are their ages and names?

I have 3 kids Kash-7, Noble – 3, Ruby June- 2

 

Are you working, not working, worked until you had kids, working with kids or whatever other version of career that I am not thinking of?

I just started a full time job, I was working part time on the weekends. It was hard on our family. Easter weekend was the first weekend in almost 3 years that we have had all together.

 

If you do work, what do you do?

I'm the Nursing Supervisor for Just Kids Pediatrics and Urgent Care

 

Are you from Oklahoma and if not, what brought you here?

Born and Raised in Oklahoma, we lived in Portland OR for 1.5 months shortly after we were married, but realized we love OKC more than we thought, and (mixed with some other reasons) decided to move back home.

What does your day to day look like?  

My day?...Get up and shower, make lunches, get ready for work, kiss my kids and husband, drive to work, encourage the staff, find the best way to make the day function well, put out fires, love on other people's kids, take vital signs, comfort worried parents, swab for flu and strep, take x-rays, give Tylenol, give suckers, give hugs, give shots, give more hugs, make sure staff has everything finished for the day, drive home, help make dinner, give baths, put on jammies, change diapers, snuggle, read books, sometimes rock and sing, pray, say goodnight, watch a bit of tv with my husband, fall alseep on the couch, collapse in bed at 9:30, maybe make room for sex with my husband and fall asleep.  I'm sure I left some things out.

What is the greatest parenting hack you have discovered as a parent?

Kids using a straw to eat Gogurt!!! It is so much less messy.

 

What is your biggest challenge as a mom?  

Being a mom has so many big challenges...but I think my biggest challenge is making time to take care of myself. If I am spent, I can't pour into them very well. I get cranky and I yell way more than I want to. It is sooo hard for me to do things that refresh and replenish me, but I am learning that it is so very necessary for my sanity, and for the hearts of my children.

 What is something simple/silly/helpful that gets you through a tough day…or any day?

Music. I love music. It calms me. Also deep, quality conversation with a friend....and a good nap.

 

Are you an extrovert/introvert/both and what challenges does that bring as a parent?

I used to be super extroverted, but the older I get the more introverted I become. I think becoming a parent does that. I find myself feeling so overwhelmed in crowds now, when I used to thrive in those settings. It is definitely a different ball game than when I had no one else to look after or worry about.

 How do you relax when you are stressed?  

I don't really know, so if you have any suggestions, I'm open to them!

 

What is that thing you have been dreaming of in the back of your head, big or small? It could be something as simple as a bath to yourself or something big, like changing careers.

I have many dreams, but lately, I can't stop thinking about foster care and adoption. It’s in my heart. One day we will open our home. (We just need a bigger one :-), legitimately.

Also, I want to go to Disney World every year. Seriously. It's magical.

 

What is something really important that your kid(s) grows up knowing? You can’t say that you love them! That is too easy.

Justin and I talk about this all the time. I think there are a few things that are equally important to us.

We want our kids to have a love and understanding and respect for all types of people from all cultures, religious preferences or not, abilities or disabilities, etc. We want them to know that love makes a difference, even if small, and it changes lives.

We also want them to know that there is no choice they could make that will change how we feel about them. They don’t have to perform for our love, and even if they royally fuck up we still love them the same.

We want them to know that we (their parents) make mistakes...and we keep going. We own our decisions, do what we need to do to make things right, and we move forward. We don’t want to hide our faults or mistakes from them.

 

What has been the hardest phase/thing you have gone through as a parent? It can be related to your kids or not.


By far the hardest phase was last year. Our oldest daughter went through a great trauma, the kind of trauma that most parents don't want to think about. We were thankful for what did not happened but so devastated by what did.  We grieved. We were angry. We fought for her. She disappeared for a while. Not physically, but emotionally and socially and we did not know how to help her. We put her in therapy. It affected every part of our lives, home, work, school, our marriage, finances, even what small social life we had...cause let's be honest, when you have three kids, doing anything social becomes very difficult. It was such a dark time for us. We didn't feel like God was near or that he even saw us. It felt so lonely and it took months for me to not feel mom guilt. MOM GUILT is a real thing. We worry about every decision we make, every word we speak, every action or lack of action. We are doing the best we can to raise beautiful, kind-hearted, mentally emotionally and spiritually healthy small people who make a difference in the world...trying to hold it together long enough to make it to bedtime, so we can go to bed, sleep lightly so we can hear every sound they might make in the night, wake up, and do it all again the next day.  Why? Because there isn't a better job out there. From the moment I very first held my oldest, I knew I'd never be the same, and it would be the hardest and most rewarding thing I will ever do in this life...be her mom. So feeling like I was helpless to help her and that I could have potentially protected her from all of it, was excruciating. It took months for my heart to let go of all the what-ifs and allow myself to sit in the shit for a while. To call it what it was and grieve and sit stay there...in order to heal and to help her heal.

 


Retro Bowling Night with Tree + Leaf March 31 2017

Hi! Heather Hayes here. Here is a brief intro about me + Collected Thread // I started working at Collected Thread in 2013 as the shop girl. How fun is that title by the way? In 2015, I started Everything Beautiful, a floral design company specializing in events + weddings. If you know Lindsay, owner of Collected Thread, she is crazy supportive of small business owners and her community! She allowed me to use the back of the shop to arrange + design when I started and I loved the Plaza District so much that four years later, I'm still here. The wonderful Holly Hodge is the primary shop girl now and rocks it! I fill in from time to time when they need a helping hand and love every second!

There are several things I love about Collected Thread and The Plaza District, but for me my story is // C O M M U N I T Y // When I started working at Collected Thread four years ago, I had no idea the family I was gaining. I've known Dusty, owner of Tree And Leaf, as long as I've known Lindsay and some days I claim his crew as my family too. Although a lot has changed over the years and both companies have grown, this still feels like home.

Whew, enough with the Hallmark story and onto the shenanigans! I'm always trying to come up with ideas and instigate ways for Tree and Leaf and Collected Thread to hang out. Talk about two worlds colliding! So a few months ago I pitched the idea, "Hey, we should have a bowling night!" Guess what? They took me up on it and we managed to get the whole crew in one place for an epic bowling night at Dustbowl! Talk about miracle of all miracles. I bowled a perfect game and Collected Thread inevitably dominated Tree and Leaf. Well... kind of. 

Here are a few of our favorite pictures //

here

Lindsay and Dusty keepin' it casual + classy. By the way, thanks Lambo for the images! You and that 35mm are the real deal!

Isn't she a babe? // PS // Mustard yellow is Lindsay's favorite color so who really knows if this was even the right size for her.

Holly Hodge, being the stunner that she is. Duh.

I mean, how cute are we? The cutest. // Internal monologue: "Why did you wear a dress bowling, Heather?" 

// Matt Hildebrand, Dusty Gilpin, Lindsay Zodrow // Yeah... Ya know, I couldn't really tell you. I'll let you caption this photo in the comments below.

The American dream really, but sorry fellas. Andrew put a ring on it!

Our best attempt at the "serious" face. I'm seconds away from laughing, Lindsay looks like she's thinking, "What time did I tell the babysitter I would be home?" and Holly is just like, "I was born for this!"

And that's it folks! My crazy little crew that I wouldn't change for the world! If you enjoyed this post and want to see more, we would love to hear from you! What are some things you would like to be involved in? What should Tree and Leaf + Collected Thread's next collaboration be? Until next time.

About our neighbors T&L // Dusty Gilpin, Steven Silva, Jacob Danley (Lambo), + Matthew Hildebrand //

"The name Tree & Leaf was originated on a whim but has come to mean quite a bit over the last 10 years. Tree & Leaf represents a collective passion for the outdoors shared by the owners, employees, and clients of our company. Whether it’s hiking, camping, skating, or sailing, we have an eagerness to explore.

Tree & Leaf represents a like-mindedness for community growth and involvement. Building and encouraging an art community, volunteering at a neighboring school, or helping a friend repair a broken vehicle; Tree & Leafers have a persistent fervor to improve their surroundings. There is always a point where an idea ends and action begins, we firmly believe in getting our hands dirty to accomplish our goals."


Fall ParTAY!!! November 02 2016

--------------------------------------------------------------
Dear Fall,
We are over this hot weather!!!! Summer is being totally rude and overstaying his welcome. Can you please come so he will stop crashing on my couch and go home!?!
Sincerely,
Collected Thread
This Friday, we are having a Fall Party to will the cold weather here! Join us from 10am-7pm THIS FRIDAY for sweet treats, cider, donuts from Holey Rollers(vegan donut truck), kids crafts, and a candle giveaway of some of our favorite new Fall scents!! Cardigans and sweaters are encouraged, despite the temperature!!

We're turning 8!!!! September 13 2016

Oh my gosh!

Oh my gosh!

Oh my gosh!

The shop is turning eight! EIGHT! As you guys know, running a small business is crazy hard so we like to take every opportunity to celebrate our life as a shop! We are so so so thankful to all of you who have supported and encouraged us! Te celebrate, we are offering EIGHT whole bucks off any purchase of $35 or more! Just use the code "happybirthdaytome" at checkout! Share about our bday on whatever social media that you prefer and we will include a little gift in your order(just write a note in the customer note section at checkout).

Thank you from the bottom of my heart. Running the shop has been one of my biggest joys and I am so thankful that I get to do it so thank you to each of you.


HUGE Tax Free Weekend SALE! August 04 2016

You know how being an adult is hard and we don't get to do fun things like throw ourselves a birthday party at the skating rink anymore? Well, having a big sale at the shop has kinda become our version of a birthday party. So on top of having an actual, you know, sale on great handmade goods, we will also have cupcakes from Cuppies and Joe(the best cupcake shop ever) and the first 4 people to purchase something at the shop each day will get a free gift from us!!! Also, if cupcakes aren't enough, we will have food trucks out front on Friday!

Holey Rollers(vegan donut truck) will be here 10-1pm, Friday.

Loaded Bowl Foodtruck(vegan comfort food) will be here from 11:30-2pm, Friday.

Everyone wins! Join us this August 5th weekend and enjoy our adult version of a rollerskating bday party!!

Live out of state or can't make it by the shop? No worries, you can grab a bunch of stuff on sale on this site as well! Everything will be marked down already EXCEPT ALL OF OUR BABY BLOOMERS!  To grab those on sale, just use the code #shortiesforshorties when you check out! Thanks and heres to a great weekend!


Love Mom Well April 14 2016

We are crazy excited to host our 3rd annual Love Mom Well event on May 6th from 5:30-8:30 here at our shop!!! Love Mom Well is an event put on by a lot of local business owners that happen to be moms & dads and some of our favorite people. The whole purpose to provide a free way to love on the mom or mom figure in your life.

Here is the rundown:

A percentage of the proceeds and our raffle goes towards Wings for Audrey, a foundation set up in the memory of a dear friend's daughter, Audrey, who was born with a rare heart and brain disorder.


Our 7th Birthday Bash August 31 2015

We are thrilled to be celebrating our 7th year in business! As a way of saying "thank you" to everyone who has loved the shop along the way, we will be offering a different discount every day of the week starting August 31st- September 5th!! Stay tuned

If you live in OKC, we will be are offering 20% off the entire store(in store only), giveaways both days, and sweet treats from Cuppies and Joe on September 4th and 5th! We hope you will join us.

 


Work by Erin Cooper March 06 2015

We are thrilled to show off the crazy talent of Erin Cooper during LIVE on the Plaza,Friday March 13th, from 7-11pm!

Erin and I have been taking a life drawing class at Oklahoma Contemporary for the last 2 months and Erin is easily the best in the class. Easily. She has such a sensitivity to balance and line and I love the energy in her abstracts. For this show, she is focusing mainly on oil on linen.  Most of these are studies for some larger works that she will be revealing later this year.

You might recognized her work from the mural she did on Western on the side of the Hoffman Furniture Building at 36th! Its a collaborative mural that she did with our dear friends, Lauren Miller and Amanda and Dylan Bradway of DNA Galleries.


Baby Registry August 23 2014

Did you know you can create a baby registry at the shop!!!?! Well, you can! And it is super easy. Just come into the shop and tell us what you want. We will follow you around with a clipboard taking furious notes. After you have set up your registry, all you have to do is let friends know that you are registered here. And the best part is, whatever you don't receive as a gift, you get 10% off of the price! EVERYONE WINS!!!!


Renegade San Francisco August 04 2014

What's this random picture of random people!?! Oh, just a little shot from RENEGADE in San Franciso. If you are not familiar with Renegade, it is this great modern craft fair that started in Chicago and not happens all over the country and even in London. I have wanted to go forever and finally made it. My husband and I just happened to be taking a little trip for our anniversary and it magically was the same weekend. Why am I telling you all of this? Just to let you know that I found some incredible new artists for the shop!!! I can't wait to show them off to you. Stay tuned!


Bethany Young + Jackie Miller May 31 2014

Join us this Friday( July 11th) from 7- 11pm for LIVE on the Plaza, our monthly art walk! We will be showcasing the works of Bethany Young and Jackie Miller, two incredible local artists who we love SO MUCH! Not only are they crazy talented but they are incredibly kind. Bethany is a photographer and the woman behind Twenty Something Magazine, a local online fashion magazine! Bethany recently started experimenting with transferring her photography onto wood panels, a process that takes about 24 hours to complete. We love the finished product and can't wait to show her off on Friday!

Jackie Miller has been blowing our minds with her delicate,feminine portraits burned into wood plaques and highlighted with acrylic and watercolor. Her fine lines and attention to detail always seem to make the viewer take a step closer to her work. We have no doubt that you are going to fall in love with Jackie's work!

Check out some of her work on our site!