holiday orders

Holiday Order Deadline Unicorn

The holiday season is upon us and that means the deadline for Christmas orders from the shop is fast approaching! The deadline this year is November 23rd, which is next Monday so if you are interested in any banners for gifts or decor this holiday season please place your order asap! All orders placed by the cutoff will be shipped no later than December 7th (and hopefully much earlier than that), but for any orders placed after November 23rd I cannot guarantee delivery before Christmas.

To ease some of your holiday shipping woes I’ve added a shipping upgrade for tracking for US customers only on certain items: full size banners, boots, blocks, and plushes. The cost is an additional $8 on top of the regular $8 shipping charge (so $16 total). Items purchased with upgraded shipping will not ship faster; the upgrade is to provide tracking only. Canadian orders for these items already have tracking at no additional cost but unfortunately I am not able to offer tracking on International orders as it is extremely cost prohibitive ($45 instead of $15 O___O). Tracking is not available on mini banners, medium banners, stickers or patches unless it is specifically requested.

Also please note that from November 23rd until December 23rd the Sara M Lyons + Unicorn Parade banners will not be available in Sara’s shop. They will still be available in mine BUT please remember that any orders placed after November 23rd will not ship in time for Christmas!

If you have any questions about the deadline or any of the changes to the shipping policy please do not hesitate to contact me! Thank you to everyone who has supported the shop this year and happy holidays!

autumn chill

01 leaves

02 sass face gwen
this face

03 mossy tree

04 mossy tree

05 mossy tree

07 super sass face gwen
no, this face

06 evergreen

08 squirrel dance
squirrel dance

09 woodgrain

11 coffee date
coffee date

10 foliage

It is well and truly fall now. We got up on November 1st and it was suddenly freezing out. My friend Mark made a joke on facebook this morning about all the people wearing scarves and North faces already but you know what? IT’S FRICKIN COLD. I almost got my own North Face out of storage last week and I think the only reason I didn’t have more to do with how much time I spent NOT going outside than any sort of “oh it’s not THAT cold” thoughts. I mean… your body becomes acclimatized to the weather/temperature of whatever place you live and when you live here, anything under 10°C is FRICKIN COLD, and really, why would you want to live somewhere where it regularly dips way below freezing. NO THANKS.

On Saturday we had a small family gathering to celebrate Symphony and Gwen’s birthdays. It was pretty low-key and OF COURSE I didn’t get pictures. I remember thinking to myself that morning “I have to remember to get pictures this year!” and I then I didn’t even take out my camera. I did instagram a pic of the cake, wowe these precious memories. Actually I was pretty happy with how it turned out; I made a tired chocolate layer cake with green icing and decorated it with green sprinkles, rosemary sprig “trees,” and little plastic deers, birds and mushrooms. I also managed to fit 17 candles (14 for Sym, 3 for Gwen) onto the tiny top tier which I thought was very impressive.

Now that Halloween and the girls’ birthdays are over I can dive right in to Christmas… except I have a bunch of stuff I NEED to do around the house and I made a deal with myself I wouldn’t put up any Christmas decorations until I finish them all. Although… I didn’t say I couldn’t BUY new Christmas decorations. Look, that little tree was EIGHTY percent off! And I don’t usually go to the store where I got the two baubles so it’s not like I can buy them later. And it wouldn’t really make sense to buy new things and put them in storage for like two weeks so I might as well just keep them in the house and so I haven’t REALLY put up any decorations… Nice loophole, huh?

SPEAKING OF THE HOLIDAYS if you want to get any banners or whatnot from the shop, today (November 9th) is the last day to place orders for Hanukkah decor/gifts and November 23rd (rapidly approaching) is the last day to place orders for Christmas decor/gifts. One thing that I think would make a great gift would be one of my “Red Lipstick is Black Magic” iron on patches! They are available for pre-order now and will be shipping as soon as they reach me, which will be soon as the manufacturer shipped them yesterday.
RLIBM etsy 3


spooky skeleton

I was talking to my upstairs neighbor on Saturday afternoon about how both of use were WOEFULLY behind on putting up our Halloween decorations. Usually I’m scrambling to put them up during nap time/after work, but because Halloween was on a weekend I was super whateverrrrrrr about it. This lead to me rushing around trying to find more spooky caution tape and spooky cobwebs and tragically being unable to find my spooky signs and having to make new ones. It was nearly a spooky disaster! Thankfully I pulled it out in the end and got the house looking pretty alright.

spooky house

Last year tons of kids skipped my hard-to-find apartment so this year I decided to set up on the front stoop instead. It’s a good thing I did too, because my old neighbor from the front of the house who used to go all out on Halloween moved away and the new tenant is some secret weirdo that no one ever sees, and my other neighbor who was giving out candy at the front ran out in less than an hour. It was bonkers busy this year!

Sym was at her dad’s but came up to hand out candy while Taylor and I took Gwen trick-or-treating, then I stayed with Sym while Taylor got Gwen ready for bed. In a burst of cleansing synchronicity we also ran out of candy at Gwen’s bedtime so I came inside to tuck her in. After Sym’s dad picked her up I went out to get Taylor and I some food and there were still a lot of kids out, so I think next year I will get EVEN MORE candy; we had about 750 candies & were giving out 2 per kid until we started to run really low and switched to 1 per kid, and it only took 2 1/2 hours, from 5-7:30 for us to run out. Next year I will get a THOUSAND candies I think.

spooky gwen

Last year Gwen was a total pro at trick-or-treating, which really surprised me because she was so shy. I guess this year she is EVEN SHYER because we had to go all the way around the block before she finally got up the nerve to go to anyone’s door. We took a second trip around and she did pretty well, although I had to go to every door with her. Only a couple of people got her costume; it had rained all afternoon and even though it had stopped by trick-or-treat time it was still very wet and muddy out so she wore her rainboots instead of the little white shoes I painted for her. Most people guessed she was an equestrian rider, a CEO/Wall Street person, or Doctor Who. In the end it doesn’t matter as long as she had fun, which she did. Eventually.


november 2015 canadian small

November! I have three versions of this month’s calendar available: Canadian with Remembrance Day highlighted, American with Thanksgiving highlighted, and Simple with no days highlighted. You can download the full-size version of any of them here. If anyone would like a version with other holidays please feel free to ask!

I have some cool stuff going on in the shop rn. I’m trying to raise a bit of money to finance a new product so I have a coupon code available for orders paid with Paypal: 20% off an order of $10 or more with the code PAYPALONLY. The code ONLY applies to orders paid with paypal; if you use direct checkout with this code your order will be cancelled & refunded. Not valid on pre-orders or Sara M Lyons + Unicorn Parade products.

RLIBM etsy 1
I also have the new product available for pre-order! A three-inch round iron-on patch featuring my original “Red Lipstick is Black Magic” design, embroidered in black, white and red on a grey background. These will be shipping in mid to late November. The more pre-orders I get, the sooner they will ship, so if you like it, please pre-order! If you order any other items with this patch the other items will ship first and the patch will ship separately when it is available. Shop coupon codes are NOT valid on this item, any orders using a coupon code will be cancelled and refunded.

ADDITIONALLY the cutoff for holiday orders this year is November 9th for Hanukkah decor/gifts and November 23rd for Christmas decor/gifts. As always, please order as early as possible to avoid disappointment! Most of my items are handmade to order and take one to two weeks to make and then 4-10 business days for shipping, so it may take up to 4 weeks for your item to arrive.

five faves: halloween!

Halloween 2009, we’re on the cob

Some of my fave things about Halloween…

Seeing the costumes Kelly-Anne from Tiny Tangerines makes for her family! She is seriously my costume hero. This year they were all characters from Gwen’s fave show, Steven Universe.

Rockets candy, we bought a bag to give out to trick-or-treaters but… I ate them. FUN FACT: they are vegan and gluten free.

Spooky music! I posted about making a Halloween playlist last year, and I’m ready to crank up the spookiness again this weekend.

Super-vital infographics about what alcohol pairs with what Halloween candy like this one.


This video gets extra points for using Ghost Riders in the Sky as the music.

teeny halloweeny: pee-wee herman

idk if I’ve mentioned it before but Gwen REALLY likes Pee-wee Herman. Pee-wee’s Playhouse is one of only three kids shows she’ll watch, so when I was trying to figure out her Halloween costume for this year I thought Pee-wee would be a good choice. I’m not actually sure if she remembers about Halloween from last year; her speech is still delayed (she is making lots of progress but has not yet caught up) so sometimes it’s hard to figure what things she understands and what things are a mystery to her since she can’t express herself. But I asked her if she wanted a Pee-wee suit and she said “yah,” so Pee-wee it is!


on Pee-wee’s left: grey jersey blazer, H&M, grey leggings, Old Navy; white uniform shirt, Old Navy; white canvas slip-ons, Vans; on Pee-wee’s right: grey blazer & suit pants, H&M; classic white shirt, H&M; white pleather sneakers, H&M;

I would like to get an actual suit for this costume, but it is a little more than I want to spend, and the store downtown doesn’t have it in stock (H&M doesn’t have online shopping in Canada). Instead I think I will get her the jersey blazer, which is less expensive and she’s more likely to wear it again. I’ll pair it with the grey Old Navy leggings she already has. Any white shirt will be fine so I’ll prob just get the cheapest one I can find in store, and the red bowtie and white pocket square I will make myself. The biggest question rn is the shoes; they should OBVIOUSLY be white, but there aren’t a lot of white shoes in stores here at this time of year. The H&M sneakers might work but they are super ugly, and while she’d probably wear the white Vans a lot, they are more than I want to spend right now. I miiiiiiight make her some white leather shoes? They would need to have waterproof soles, but I have some crêpe rubber sole material I’ve been itching to try out, so depending on how much white leather I have on hand that’s an option as well.

squelch beach

I didn’t mean for these trip-to-the-island posts to drag on for quite so long but I had some serious chaos around here last week and just didn’t have time to get to this, the final post. On our last day we went up to a beach on what my research tells me is Craig Bay (although I’m sure my mom will correct me if I’m wrong) but I like to call SQUELCH BEACH. The tide was out and the place was a serious mudpit, but in a good way? The wet sand was covered in crabs and periwinkles and oysters and even jellyfish. Gwen loved it, as soon as she got down to the sand she took off her shoes and just headed out to sea. The dogs also had a blast, and were very wet, muddy and smelly very quickly. Luckily (?) we trapped ourselves on the wrong side of the creek when the tide came in and had to walk back the long way round through the forest, which gave the dogs time to dry off and Gwen time to become very tired, so she fell asleep in the car on the way back to my mom’s.

01 squelch beach

02 gwen on the beach
That little pink speck is Gwen.

03 dogs on the beach

04 squelch beach
There is also a little pink Gwen-speck in this pic, although you probably can’t even see her. She just went for it.

05 water dogs

06 georgie & gwen in the water

07 micro crab
The tiniest crab in Crabville, it’s basically invisible.

08 rip shoes
When we got back to my mom’s I threw these in the trash, rip shoes.

09 dogs in the rocks

10 gwen on the rocks

11 kichou on the shore
At one point I lost sight of Kichou and had a panic that I’d have to call Taylor and be like “I lost your dog in the ocean, sorreeeeee.” Thankfully he’d just gone to explore a nearby resort, not the world under the sea.

12 gwen walking close

13 gwen walking far

14 honeycomb rocks
There were loads of these cool rock formations but unfortunately most were COVERED in goose doody, making them very unphotogenic.

15 zoe & chris on the bluff
My sister and her boyfriend, who were excellent travelling companions.

16 slime sluice
The aforementioned resort’s artifical waterfall, christened the Slime Sluice.

17 gwen on the blackberry trail
She discovered blackberries on this trail and we ended up wayyyyyy behind the others.

18 horsetails

19 dome spider
the woods were full of these weird dome-shaped spiderwebs

20 trees & sky

21 gwen sleeping



























The last time Gwen went to the Island was back in October, and it was kind of cold and rainy. Even though there were a few showers on Saturday, it was mostly quite warm while we were there. Gwen had a lot of fun tramping around my mom’s property, exploring the forest and the garden and especially the blackberry brambles. Once she realized you could pick & eat them right off the branches it was like GAME OVER, MAN. She spent most of the weekend with purple staining her hands and face (and clothes…).

hometownward bound

Originally I’d planned just one post about this little getaway, but I have too many pictures and it would be obscene to cram them into one post. Like, you would all hate me & get a cramp in your scrolling finger. So while I settle back in to my regular life of cleaning the house and dishes and laundry (SO. MUCH. LAUNDY. I was so good at not overpacking this trip but between us Gwen and I had a full load of super-filthy clothes from just two and a half days away. How???) here are the pictures from Friday only.

That little white cluster on the right of the horizon is Vancouver.




The sky is so big over the water.


With no Taylor on this trip I had to be my own photographer




This past weekend Taylor and Sym were both going to be away so I decided to take Gwen over to Vancouver Island to visit my mom. Originally I’d planned a trip for the whole family later this month but my recent financial setback kind of scrapped that plan. I still really wanted to make it over there so I decided that rather than sit around my apartment alone all weekend, I’d get out of town.

Since I don’t have a car (or a driver’s license…) I had to walk on the ferry with the stroller and the little dogs, which was a super daunting prospect. I invited my sister Zoë and her boyfriend Chris to come with, to help and also because they are cool and fun. Taylor booked a zipcar and drove us out to the ferry terminal on Friday night and we were on our way! We actually almost missed the ferry because they didn’t have any sort of announcement for foot passengers with dogs boarding the ferry, so we missed our opportunity to board before the cars and had to wait until after all the big trucks and busses had loaded. It was a huge hassle because the vehicles park so close together there weren’t a lot of places where the stroller could fit through, so at times I actually had to lift the stroller, with Gwen in it and the carseat bungee-corded to the back, over people’s cars (with the help of a VERY nice BC Ferries worker, don’t think I could have lifted it by myself).

They have a creepy little pet area on the upper car deck (which is annoying since we had to walk onto the lower car deck) but it was tiny and there was a large, mean, VERY AGGRESSIVE dog in it already, so the helpful worker showed us some weird little seats on the other side of the car deck instead. Considering she’d had no real dinner and was up past her bedtime, Gwen was really well-behaved, which was a blessing (and was not repeated on the return trip).

I used to take the ferry back and forth so much, and would spend most of my time on the passenger deck, and I guess I got used to how beautiful the trip is. Being stuck on the car deck with the dogs (tbh I don’t see why they couldn’t have a pet area on the upper outdoor passenger deck, like don’t even get me started on this) kind of forced me to spend a lot of time gazing at scenery, because there wasn’t anything else to gaze at. It really is amazingly stunning here.


happy day



This is the most on-theme outfit I could get Gwen to wear; I said to Taylor the combination of robe-as-daywear and insane bedhead was giving me Baby Lebowski vibes and he replied that all she needed to complete the look was a virgin White Russian. So like. Milk.






Happy Canada Day! I’m off all this week so it kind of doesn’t feel like a holiday for me? Taylor is taking Friday off instead of today (or last night, since his shift starts at midnight) and Sym is spending the day at her dad’s, so it’s just me & the babe this afternoon. We might go to the fireworks tonight, it depends on Gwen since they will be starting well past her bedtime and if she’s grumpy we aren’t going to bother. My only real Canada Day plans are to make a couple different flavoured syrups, having tacos for dinner, and remaking the banner I was working on yesterday that Gwen cut in half at some point before I woke up this morning.

My July calendar page is up now, you can download it here.