About Mama


June 17, 2011

When I wrote the last LABF post called “REINVENTION” it was the word that most described the journey I have been on for a few years and greatly relates to the NEWS I am going to share today.

When I started this blog (this wonderful…first step into the world wide web…first time I went public with my photography and writing…first time I began the journey of creating a written history and what became the outlet for creating a writing ritual), I creatively designed it to reflect one aspect of my life, HOME (small farm, cooking, decorating, family). For a couple of years, the design was perfectly suited to the original mission. I loved every second of writing about those topics (and still do) but during the second year of writing LABF, my life started to change in many ways. In particular, I started feeling inspired to work my way toward a new career in the creative arts. Suddenly, the framework and design I created here didn’t always match what I felt inspired to write about and ultimately, I realized I needed to make a change.

It has been an amazing journey this last year. I have had lots of highs, lots of challenges, lots of fun, and lots of humbling moments. In the end, the journey has been so worth it because I feel like I have created something that reflects ME. Authentic Me.

Introducing my new website and blog home ShawnStratmann.com.


I invite you to come visit me on the new website/blog. I promise to share more about LABF, but in addition will also share lots of creative inspiration, my new on-line shop, and insights into making a major life change at 40.

Before, I sign off here, I want to say THANK YOU.


  • Thinking what I wrote was worth reading (over 1 million hits two years in a row).
  • Encouraging me here — I have received the most amazing support from many of readers and I love you for that!
  • Continuing to check in, even though I haven’t been consistent for the last year while I have been figuring all of this out.
  • Giving me a place to be creative, the best gift of all.

Lastly, I want each reader to know without the LABF experience, I would not be where I am today and for that I will be FOREVER GRATEFUL!!!!


Note: I will keep LABF up for at least a year.


February 25, 2011


Dear Friends,

I have not been here lately. I am on a journey of reinvention. I am reinventing my health, my dreams, my website, my business. It takes a lot of time to make BIG changes in life…sacrifices must be made. The time I had previously tucked away for writing has been reassigned to other things. Time with my family, time creating the framework, time to dream, time to workout, time to dance, time to LIVE. This makes me happy.

My new website and blog are coming soon. I am designing them to reflect how I want to live. Simple, authentic, free, and creative.

If anyone is still checking in on me…thank you. I hope you follow me on my next journey too.



November 12, 2010


“Everything looks great, except for….your cholesterol”, doctor says. “Any particular insight as to why your cholesterol is 267?”. “Well, um….does eating eggs five days a week impact that number? Or could it be the side of beef we purchase every six months?” , I asked jokingly. This is no surprise, my cholesterol was over 200 when I was 19 years old and weighed 98 pounds.

I have had this talk for over 20 years with my doctor but this time…more serious. I have six months to do lower my cholesterol on my own. Then we have to talk about “M.E.D.I.C.A.T.I.O.N”. Seriously????Really?????

I am taking this seriously….ooohhh a challenge…a goal to meet…..I am going to try to do it with some dietary changes. Starting with breakfast…..Steel cut oatmeal, almonds, banana….not so bad I have to say.

So long my favorite scrambled eggs with cheese….take care poached on toast….hasta la vista eggs benedict…it was nice knowing you!


May 7, 2010


  • You have to be willing to roll-up your sleeves and just get it done;
  • You have to re-think how you do things and be open and willing to change;
  • You have to set your dreams aside for the sake of practicality;
  • You have to question why you accept things that are not ok with you;
  • You have to purge the junk to clear the way;
  • You have to re-align your behaviors with your beliefs.

Life is good, busy, and unpredictable. The past month, I have had a lot of “Sometimes” in my life. I think the great thing about “Sometimes” is that it doesn’t mean “Always”. I look forward to creating the time to be back here regularly.

Six Pack

August 9, 2009

Summer 2009
It was the first time we have all been together since 2004. And the first time we have had our picture taken together since 1997.
Fall 1997

This six-pack belongs to my father. I, ME, MOI, the oldest…topping out at 39, brother, 38 (in a few weeks), brother 26, sister 25, sister 14, brother, 13. I don’t see any of them often enough for my liking…distance and various locations tend to present a few challenges. I, ME, MOI…in Maryland, Brother 38 in Western Florida, Brother 26 and Sister 25 in Virginia, Sister 14 and Brother 13 in eastern Florida.

I grew up with Brother 38. I never lived with the rest of the pack. Doesn’t matter though…I love them all.

I had the pleasure of taking my youngest brother on vacation with me a few weeks ago…he lovingly introduces himself as, “I’m the brother from another mother”….

…I giggle each time he says it. It was wonderful being together again.

25 Random Things

February 15, 2009


If you are on Facebook, like I am, I am sure that you have been tagged with “25 Random Things”

Thought I’d share mine today.

  • I love being a Mother AND I also like having my own passions, hobbies and interests.
  • I am a classic “Jack of All Trades, Master of None”.
  • I have a weird obsession with Williamsburg, VA and have been there 5 times in the last two years.
  • I started Irish Dancing when I was 37.
  • I puked for 7 months when I was pregnant with my second child.
  • I changed my Major 6 times in college–It took me 5+years to get out of college because I couldn’t make up my damn mind (you see where “Jack of all Trades, Master of None”-makes sense now).
  • Graduated with a degree in Literature (American/English), minor in Journalism, 1 class shy of two additional minors (Economics and Government and Politics). If you personally know me, you can see how this makes perfect sense.
  • The furthest math I completed in College was Math 101, basically remedial math, and I took that at a community college so that I had a chance of passing.
  • Weirdly though, I totally ACED Statistics of Journalism (received an A+, the curve of the class was 60%) which led to an interview and re-test by the Academic Board at University of Maryland (because of my Math history and the standard curve). Got an A+ on the retest.
  • My children will have a hard time pulling much over on me when they get to high school—unfortunately for them…I was up to a whole lot of no good at that age.
  • When I was born, I had a Great-Great Grandmother, Great-Grandmother, Grandmother, Mother, and ME. 5 generations alive at one time (I have a picture to prove it).
  • I broke the cycle when I didn’t have a baby at 21 as each of the women above did before me.
  • I am a way stricter parent than my parents were.
  • My favorite movie is “The Color Purple” and I have seen it at least 100 times…my favorite scene was the church scene in the end when the Gospel choir is sing “God is Trying to Tell you Something”.
  • I cry in any movie where infidelity is the subject…HEARTBURN with Jack Nicholson and Merrill Streep…that’s a killer.
  • One of the saddest moments of my childhood was when a good friends Dad passed away…I was 15 years old.
  • I love infomercials…especially ones with exercise products.
  • My father was in a band when I grew up and because of that, I love bluegrass music.
  • I lived at the beach when I was 16 years old for a summer (once again, I am a much stricter parent than my parents were–never be allowed at the Buttercup).
  • My mother was 38 years old when I graduated High School–that is how old I am now.
  • When my kids move out of the house, I will live in warm weather during the winter….Not a big fan of the cold for long periods of time.
  • I have no memory of ANYTHING before my parents divorced.
  • Growing up in the 70’s with very few “extras”, I still got to do some really neat/different things as a kid.
  • I have 1 brother, 2- half brothers, 2 half sisters, 1 step sister, 2 step brothers and 1 adopted brother.
  • I still have 2 grandmothers and 1 grandfather in my life.
  • My best friends make me laugh until I cry (you know who you are).
  • I built an amphitheater in my backyard so that I could host a concert series every summer.
  • The ONLY food I won’t eat is canned cranberry sauce.
  • I read at least 4 or 5 books at one time.
  • My husband is a perfect match for me.
  • I Love my Family, but more importantly, I LIKE my family.
  • I talk to my mother just about every day and I rarely hang up without telling her that I love her.

Don’t miss a post! Subscribe to our feed here at Life at Buttercup Farm!

My Etsy Shop

Coming Soon!!!

My Other Blog

Birds-eye View Of Buttercup

  • IMG_3983
  • shawnselfportrait
  • twirled
  • flowerfabric


You can e-mail me anytime at shawn@lifeatbuttercup