By Kristina Dougherty
PHILADELPHIA (CBS) – Did you ever wonder what life looks like through the eyes of a child?
Jaime L.B. Schell took that idea, plus a passion for writing and illustration, and launched her blog Cafe TwinPop.
“Cafe Twinpop is an illustrated look at life in Center City through the eyes of precocious toddler twins. It’s about making friends, making mischief, and making fun of Mommy,” she explains.
Jaime began her blog in September of 2014, right before her twins’ first birthdays.
“I’ve always loved writing and drawing, and when the twins were born I suddenly felt an overwhelming need to document and share every second of this new, mind-blowing adventure I was having with the world. But, I didn’t want to bore people with tons of pictures of my kids, and I didn’t want to be just another mommy blog. I also wanted to protect their anonymity, as much as possible. Turning them into sassy little characters and writing from their perspective just seemed to flow from that,” she says.
Jaime’s blog describes what the toddlers are thinking at any given moment. For example, a post from January documents what the twins were (probably) thinking when Jaime and her husband put up baby gates: ‘The beautiful antique furniture was put away and before we knew it, BABY GATES were installed to keep us penned in to one desolate area of what was once our creative, democratic utopia…It has only gotten worse from there. Now Mommy and Daddy think our expressionist artworks on the wall are “hostile to the regime.”’
Jaime ties the twins’ witty commentary together with bright illustrations.
“Illustration has been a passion of mine since I was a little kid, but it’s only in the last year or so that I’ve really started to explore what I might be able to do with it,” she explains.
Jaime says since she began blogging, her life has changed in certain ways. “Personally, it has taught me how to see little, fleeting, every day moments as potential works of art. It’s a kinder, gentler way to poke fun at myself, too. Professionally speaking, it keeps me writing (I was a copywriter and social media writer before having the twins) and it’s a safe space where I can practice honing my love for illustration.”
As for the name Cafe TwinPops? “Everybody calls the twins the “twinpops” – it’s a nickname I came up with during a delirious August afternoon in the popsicle aisle of the grocery store while eight months pregnant with them. The “cafe” part comes from the fact that my coffee consumption has increased exponentially since they’ve been born and because I like the idea of a cafe as a place where you can relax, have fun and be inspired. Hopefully people feel that when they visit the blog!”
What does the future hold for Jaime and the twins? “There’s this crazy part of me that would love to study animation and get these kids their own show on the Sprout channel, but for now I’ll just keep on posting their adventures and hope they don’t grow up and hate me for it!”
For more on Cafe TwinPop: click here.