Thursday, March 31, 2016




Think Good Thoughts by Colbie Caillat

Be My Forever by Christina Perri

When I'm With You by JJ Heller

WATCHING...just finished season 4 of House of Cards...might catch up on Fixer Upper's, but mostly feeling the need to break up with TV for a little while. It doesn't make us better people. It rarely inspires or motivates us. It's more that we watch it because it is there. Seriously pondering replacing it with a cabinet for our board games. Wouldn't get rid of it all the way. I love a good movie night. But maybe just relocating it so the room we spend the most time in our evenings in isn't centered around it. It's a thought that has been tugging at me lately.

BUYING...Katie Daisy's book! My favorite pages are How to be still, How to evoke a daydream, & that strawberry pie recipe is sooooo happening this summer!

EATING...excited to try a new macaroon shop in town tomorrow! And the kids' Easter candy. Chocolate is my kryptonite. strawberry quilt I brought out for spring! Pandora One without commercials! Cotton candy & old fashion popcorn machines...might need to invest in these for this summer!

WEARING...still wearing tall boots and sweaters with all this spring snow. Blah.

LAUGHING AT...Average Parent Problems on Instagram.

GETTING READY...for summer!!! I want to wear flip flops and be outside and have BBQ's...instead I just daydream & explode my Summer board on Pinterest.





Wednesday, March 30, 2016

2 Holidays & Spring Break

I'm always thinking of Mary Flair projects and slowly one by one we (Andy) make them happen. My newest project is to take out the old scary propane heater and vent and replace the empty hole with a bulletin board for photos and notes...way more practical than a heater. Ha! And of course such a bulletin board needs a Mary Flair garland!

This little guy is hilarious. Every since the hot water heater flood he is a bit obsessed with hot water heaters....drawing books of hot water heaters for his preschool teacher...talking about how our basement flood was like when God flooded the world...right. He says, "There was water everywhere and toys floated dried up and then rainbows everywhere like God's promise...boom rainbows, rainbows, rainbows! And when it was all over we needed a new hot water heater".

I like the Brody version.

Love me some holiday jams. And Dr. Pepper. Always Dr. Pepper.

My St. Patty's Day crew. We had corn beef and cabbage for dinner and tried some Irish step dancing afterwards. We were pretty good.
We love the neighborhood Easter egg hunt every year. This year Brody decided to dress up as the Easter Bunny...totally fitting. And he was the only one not freezing his booty off.

My vanity is always a cluttered, happy place. Journals, coffee cups, lots of kid made jewelry...a beautiful mess.

Did I tell you guys we got a community garden plot?! It's as big as our living room! I'm a wee bit overwhelmed by that thought, but crazy excited for a summer of garden adventures!

Our spring break camping trip was canceled due to weather concerns. So we just chilled most of spring break. Which was a refreshing change from the daily grind.

It snowed the first day of spring break. Brody still had school and Andy already took the day off for our camping trip. We ended up dropping Brody off at school and heading to Starbucks and Barnes & Noble. We were kinda out of our groove but enjoyed hot drinks and looking at books. I could spend hours and hours just walking around any book store.

Abby was begging for a sewing project, so ventured to the basement to go fabric "shopping" and made some hair scrunchies.

She just wanted to keep making them and making them and making them.

5 peeps up in Mary Flair gets a little cozy. We modified the original twin bed last year so that the couch could pull out into a full bed. That is where Andy & I sleep. Then Abby & Brody sleep on a twin blow up mattress where the table comes out. And AJ, wanting his own space away from his brother & sister, prefers to sleep on the floor in the isle. Which he doesn't mind, but it leaves zero room for walking space and causes problems. We had to figure something out. So after a bit of research we decided MF needed a bunk bed!

The bunk can be pushed in during travel and used as a shelf like the pic below or pulled out to become a twin bed at night! Perfect! We just need to paint it.

A massive spring blizzard means I get to wear my polka dot yellow rain boots!

We had a movies & pj day over spring break and dyed Easter eggs one day.

I found this pic of me for the kids of Easter when I was about 2.

These two got themselves ready to play in the snow. Abby didn't notice she put on Andy's snow pants and Brody's coat is upside down...

Brody Bear is my snuggler...always ready to cuddle up with his mama.

Can I just say that I am sooooo ready for consistent warm weather and being outside...
I day dream and pin a thousand pins to my summer board every day till I feel like I'm going explode from being inside. I want flip flops and strawberry wine and days in the backyard.
I resisted MJ for a long time till this last release. In my longing for summer the strawberries & gingham got to me & I just couldn't resist any longer!


Thursday, March 24, 2016


I went to Las Vegas for a photography expo the morning after the DI tournament. I was too exhausted & busy to think about the trip until I was on the plane. I'm not gonna lie...I've never been to Vegas...hate traveling alone & was pretty much scared sh*#less. If someone would have said boo to me within the first half hour of landing I probably would have wet my pants & threw up at the same time. I made it to the hotel & met up with Sharon and felt suddenly ok..still outside my comfort zone, but safe.

We attended a lot of awesome classes with great speakers, got to see some print competition submissions being judged...which was crazy interesting, walked around the expo and got to touch & feel print products...which I love...I'm such a texture girl, listened to an awesome key note speaker very passionate about believing in your worth, had yummy free coffee and cupcakes...that I elegantly dropped all over myself & even managed to coat Sharon with...I'm the complete opposite of coordinated when it comes to eating around other people...a super awesome talent that I have learned to just warn people about rather than overcome. Seriously if you see me at a social gathering that involves food...I will have something spilled down the front of me.
Went to an opening night party...where I learned Vegas drinks are MUCH stronger than the drinks I'm used to at bible study. Oh Vegas.

We walked around and saw lots of gorgeous hotels and fun shops...

We attended a wedding and reception of complete strangers...which was super weird, but fun...

They had show girls for photo ops at the wedding and a Vegas show girl...ha!
Then I caught my shuttle back to the airport & flew home super exhausted & excited & inspired...not just for work stuff...but I flew to Vegas by myself, and I survived! I listened to amazing people tell their stories...& something started to stir in me that maybe I have a story to tell & maybe just maybe it takes leaving our comfort zones to really start feeling confident enough to share our stories.

I chatted a little with a lady sitting next to me on the plane and ended up giving her one of my all-time favorite books because she said her book club always picks super boring books. I'm pretty sure she won't find this one boring. Maybe she'll pass it along to a random stranger on a plane one day too.

Then I got home to my suburban traditional decorated home cluttered with toys and kid art to find out our water heater went out and flooded the basement that evening. It felt good to be home as a mama was exactly where I was meant to be, and although the water heater thing sucked...all I could do was laugh, feel blessed knowing we could replace it, hug my family and wait till the next day to take a shower. It was a good first trip to Vegas.





Wednesday, March 23, 2016

After Winter Break Is Spring

Our life kinda hits a fever pitch right after winter break between January and the Destination Imagination tournament. But once the DI tournament is over, it's smooth sailing...the downward slope toward summer. Ahhhhh...summer.

I decorated for Easter.

I love my Thursdays with just Brody. He just plays quietly...usually crafting...painting sticks and rocks...

And we enjoy snacks together like peanut butter & honey with apple slices. Snack times are some of our most peaceful times when we get to have our best conversations about life.

Andy lets me sleep in on Saturday mornings, and it's the best gift you can give this non-morning mama. Waking up slowly with a cup of coffee is an amazing way to start the day.

If you are my child, you will grow up sewing. This skill comes in handy when making DI costumes. AJ is learning to appliqué with zig zag stitching here for his pac man shirt. He is very serious when sewing.

Abby sewed a Barbie sleeping bag with a pillow one morning. She is very detail oriented and determined when she is sewing...which is a good thing...she will surpass her mama with her sewing skills one day. I tend to be a very impatient crafter.

Brody still contends that he wants to be a tractor when he grows up. Not a farmer that drives a tractor...the actual tractor.

Love random sunny days! If only they would stick around.

We had many outside adventures on this sunny afternoon.

Andy loves making big breakfasts. I love eating big breakfasts, so it works well. Crepes with Nutella and homemade coconut syrup are my favorite. That crepe pan was the best purchase ever.

One of my favorite things about AHG is that Abby is truly learning to have a heart of service. I love this service project of stuffing Easter eggs to go in food baskets given out at a local food bank. Why have I never thought about Easter eggs going out in those baskets?! What a fun treat for families in need!

Abby Mama date birthday shopping for Abby's BFF. She said it was the best day ever...a service project and short trip to the mall shopping for a friend. Sometimes as parents we think we need to give our kids big gifts or elaborate outings when really all they crave is our attention.

Wacky Day for Dr. Seuss' bday...

Sometimes this kid just cannot contain himself. I can respect that.

Rubik's cube cookies for DI tournament week. Tournament week is an exhausting week of extra practices, stress to meet deadlines, and excitement to show off months of hard work.

I could never be a professional cookie person. Not sure how they do it.

They rocked their central challenge....the skit they wrote and practiced for months. They nailed everything they worked so hard on...their timing...their volume...their gestures...their was truly an awesome performance. They fell apart on their instant challenge...the surprise task they are given 5 minutes to solve. Instant challenges are hard.

Destination Imagination teaches some serious life work, perseverance, compromise, stepping outside of your comfort zone, problem solving under pressure...hard stuff for adults let alone 8 & 9 year olds. But just imagine how far these skills will take them in life if they master these skills as kids. We worked hard and learned a lot in our first competive although they didn't go to state, they walked away successful. And more determined than ever for our next DI season.

Almost caught up...just a couple more posts to get to the here & now. Ha. Life is a whirlwind. That's what makes documenting it so priceless. Right?!