My #1 self-care strategy!

You know what I’m afraid of more than anything? More than ghost or accidentally eating spicy food?

I’m afraid of burn-out.

As a solopreneur, I’ve fallen into the habit of working a lot and not really taking a break, especially in the beginning.

When I noticed I was getting burnt out only a couple of months after I started working on Honeyberry Studios full-time, I started taking mini sabbaticals every 7 weeks. (The brilliant concept was created by Seanwes.)

Basically, I block off every 7th week on my calendar and don’t schedule any work.

That’s a time to purposefully relax and pursue things I enjoy but don’t have time to do normally. I might see friends for coffee or make something just for fun.

Full disclosure – I’ve been neglecting my mini sabbaticals for a few months – the last couple sabbaticals happened during a super busy holiday season and right before a big trade show – so I kind of tried to take it easy but not really 😑 and I’ve been feeling run down for a while.

So when I was on my mini sabbatical last week, I was determined to enjoy it!

Here are some highlights from my week off 😉

So, the weekend before the sabbatical, I had worked at Custer’s Spring Arts & Crafts Show in Spokane, Washington.

It was a fun show, and the day we left turned out gorgeous!

Dave and I enjoyed a stroll along the riverfront after the breakfast. Spokane river was impressive!

I worked on my pet ornaments in my pottery class on Tuesday.

These are not for sale but I may make more for my Etsy shop in the future. Aren’t they so adorable?

I love a good homemade moisturizer.

I’ve been making this recipe for a year or so, and it’s VERY moisturizing! I’ve been adding my favorite doTerra essential oils to make it smell nice, too 🌿

I also started working on my Crafter’s Box punch needle project.

I’m still getting a hang of it, but it’s therapeutic and I love the fuzzy texture of the piece 😊

Last but not least, we went to The Outback Kangaroo Farm in Arlington on Sunday!

It was a spring-y, sunny day, and all the creatures were so adorable 💕 Totally worth a visit if you’re in the area!

This mini sabbatical was just what the doctor ordered.

A perfect reminder to not overlook my #1 self-care strategy again!

Hope you’re doing something nice for yourself this week 💕


Join me on beautiful Vashon Island this spring!

I’ll be teaching my block printing workshop at Camp Thundercraft this spring!

What’s Camp Thundercraft, you ask? In short, it’s a retreat for small creative business owners. 

Throughout the weekend, they offer workshops and classes that are suitable for people at different places in their creative business.

And there will be plenty of opportunities to mingle and connect with other makers, too, of course.

It’s gonna be at Camp Burton on beautiful Vashon Island on the weekend of April 13th through 15th.

Vashon Island is the first place I’d ever visited in the states back in 1995.

I was there for a spring break for a short exchange student program (Vashon high school was our sister school)​ and fell in love with the place and people.

That led me to coming back to study in Seattle after high school in ’96 and the rest is, well, history.

I haven’t been to Vashon for many, many years (probably 20 years by now) and am super stoked to go back there!!

I’m teaching a couple of sessions of my block printing workshops there and will be attending other workshops for myself, too.

You can see the camp schedule, other speakers, and register here.

Let me know if you have any questions. Hope to see you there 👋


p.s. I’m gonna be on my mini sabbatical week, so no new post from me on next Sunday!

New art prints for spring 🌸

Some people argue that Seattle doesn’t have distinct four seasons, but I beg to differ!

Even though it’s still chilly out, the days are growing longer, and I can feel the spring is near! I can almost smell the cherry blossoms in the air 🌸

Just like changing your wardrobe, I like to update my gallery wall for the new season.

That’s why I wanted to remind you of my colorful new art prints that are perfect for welcoming in the spring in your home!

1) Self-care is not Selfish (8″x10″) 2) Welcome to the World, Little One (11″x14″) 3) Sail On (8″x10″) 4) Moonlit Mountains (8″x10″)

I can see these prints in your kids’ room, office, or bedroom. Really, any place you wanna add a little color and cheer would do 😉

They’re archival prints on a very nice fine art paper. Look at the velvety texture. Swoon!!

My customers often ask me if these are my originals. Well, not quite 😀 But I agree they look so good it’s hard to believe they’re not original.

You can browse all of my new prints in my shop here.



Drawing tutorial video behind the scenes

I worked on a new drawing tutorial video for Sakura of America last week.

It’s a mixed media drawing of colorful flowers in a vase. Perfect for spring, don’t you think?

my humble video shoot set-up

I mostly made my piece with Sakura Koi brush pens and enjoyed trying their Quickie Glue in this video, too.

(Plus glitters… So sparkly🤩)

I’ll keep you posted on when the video comes out on their YouTube channel.

If you want to see my previous videos, you can check out my archive here. I also talk about my video shoot process in this post

Have a creative week!


My Hawaiian vacation pics!

I love Hawaii!

Oh the sunshine and the warm, plumeria-scented breeze… I could feel every cell in my body relax as soon as we landed.

My mom and I met in Oahu, HI (it’s about the same distance from Japan and Seattle) and spent a week hanging out, eating, shopping, and sightseeing during the last week of January.

Enjoy some snapshots from our vacation 🌴🌺🌈

We went on a dolphin watching tour. We’re holding a fake dolphin skull 😂 We did see dolphins and a humpback whale! It was amazing.

Bishop Museum. Stunning exhibits & buildings.

Beauty of the building itself is worth a visit!

Waimea Valley & Falls

In the hibiscus garden

Waimea Fall. No we didn’t go swimming 😉

Beautiful flowers everywhere at the Waimea Valley Botanical Garden

Ladies on the beach in North Shore. There are lots of wild chickens and roosters roaming around once you’re outside of Waikiki.

Kitty chilling in old Haleiwa town

We watched a beautiful sunset in North Shore. My favorite sight in Hawaii ❤

I made a couple of art inspired by the beauty on the island.

I’ve only been back for a few days, but I miss it SO MUCH 😢 I wish I could’ve stayed there a little longer. Sigh.

I hope I’m lucky enough to visit the paradise many more times. If you go (or live there, jealous!!), soak up the sun for me 😉


Spring & Summer Collection is here! 💐

I turned 40 on Wednesday!! 🎈🎉🎊

I finished the Seattle Gift Show on Tuesday (which is a 4-day long gift trade show, very slow, long 4 days), so instead of having a big birthday bash, I had dinner with some of my friends at my favorite Japanese restaurant, Nishino. A perfectly delicious and low-key celebration.

I enjoy getting older – I’ve grown to care less and less about what people think (or learn that people aren’t actually thinking about you 😀) as I get older. So freeing ✨

As if you need another reason to celebrate, my spring & summer 2018 collection is now available in my shop!

{Clockwise from top left: Bunny Mug Easter | Father’s Day Empathy | Cupcake Father’s Day | Welcome to the World Baby Shower | Vintage Flower Vases Mother’s Day | Mother’s Day Empathy | Self-Care is not Selfish | Sail On, Graduation | Thinking of You Pink Bouquet | Sloth Happy Birthday}

{1. Self-Care is not Selfish Print, 8″x10″ | 2. Welcome to the World, Little One Print 11″x14″ | 3. Sail On, 8″x10″ | 4. Moonlit Mountains, 8″x10″ }

I’ve also added new notepad and wrapping papers to the shop, which are not photographed here 👆

Please note that I’ll be in Hawaii with my mom this coming week (!), so any orders that come in after January 27th will be shipped during the week of February 5th.

Here is to a new decade with lots more to celebrate!


p.s. In case you missed the link to my new spring & summer collection, click here.

p.p.s. I’m taking a much needed vacation this coming week – no new post from me next Sunday 😉

Love is in the air ❤️

Do you celebrate Valentine’s Day?

I don’t do anything extravagant but write Dave a little note to tell him how much I appreciate and love him ❤️

I’m in a more celebratory mood around this time of the year anyway because there is New Year’s holiday, and then Dave and my first date anniversary (11 years!), and my birthday (I’m turning 40 next week!!), and then Valentine’s Day tops it all off.

I know it’s a bit early for Valentine’s Day, but I’m so excited to share my new Valentine’s Day card and notepad with you!

Aren’t they so ADORABLE? 😍

You can order your Secret Garden Bird Notepad here and the Secret Garden Bird Valentine’s Day Card here.

And, don’t forget these classic love designs 😉

{ 1. Secret Bird Garden Card / 2. Sea Otters Holding Hands Card / 3. Croc & Birdie We Belong Together Card / 4. Cat Violin Card / 5. Pink Alpaca Heart Card / 6. Red Flowers Love Card / 7. Iguana Flowers For You Card / 8. I Love You More Than Card }

FYI – I’m going to Oahu with my mom during the last week of January, so orders that come in after January 27th won’t go out until February 6th.

Have a love-filled day​ ❤️​


p.s. In case you missed the link, you can order any of my love cards and gifts here.

p.p.s. My new collection will be released next week! Keep your eyes peeled for my next post 👀

Spring & summer collection preview!

As soon as I finished the last holiday craft show in December, I started working really hard to prepare for the Seattle Gift Show, which is a semi-annual gift trade show.

The show is this coming weekend (EEEEK! 😱), and my goal is to release my spring and summer collection there.

Here are some of the new designs I’ve been creating that are going to be part of the new line!

I’m working on a few more designs as we speak – birthday, congratulations, and Easter, for example.

And, new notepads and wrapping papers are in the works, too! Woo hoo!

I’ll keep you posted on the progress and let you know when they’re available in my shop 😘

Stay tuned!


p.s. Are you a retail shop buyer? You can register for the Seattle Gift Show here. See you at booth #3648

New Year’s wishes for you!

2018 is the Year of the Dog. I had a great fun drawing these cute doggies in sweaters 🐶

New Year’s is the biggest holiday in Japan, and everything shuts down between January 1st and the 3rd. Though I’ve lived in the states for almost 22 years now, I still observe it and take a break in the beginning of the year.

On New Year’s Day, Dave and I usually take a long walk if the weather is nice, eat mochi (rice cake) soup to warm up, and be lazy and enjoy relaxing together.

On last New Year’s Day, we went for a walk in the University of Washington Arboretum.

Everything feels sacred to me in the beginning of the year. It gives me a pause to think about what I want this year to be. I take the time to appreciate everything I have in my life.

One of the many things I appreciate in my life is, of course, YOU! I could not do this without your support, so thank you for being interested in what I do and supporting my work❤️

Do you have a ritual or tradition for New Year’s holiday? Tell me in comments 😊

Here is to a whole new year filled with love, joy, and creativity!


Yuko Miki Honeyberry Studios Headshot



Personal seasons greetings

I can’t believe it’s the last day of the year… Can you??

This year, I’ve managed to send out holiday greeting cards to our family and friends.

For someone who designs greeting cards for a living, I’m terrible at sending people cards 😅 so I’m glad I finally fixed that!

Inside the card, we included a summary of what we’ve done in 2017. It’s short and sweet, and I thought you might enjoy reading our little updates, too.

I enjoyed reviewing our year – if I’m not intentional about it, I’d never take the time to think about our accomplishments. It all seemed like a blur until I wrote them all down!

How has your year been? What are some of the highlights? If you have any updates, hit reply and tell me 😊

Have a happy and safe New Year! I’m so grateful for your support this year and look forward to sharing my journey with you in 2018!


Yuko Miki Honeyberry Studios Headshot