What I’m Thinking About Right Now

get ready…there is no rhyme nor reason to this…


|| grown-up coloring books. i don’t get this thing. there’s a whole cottage industry of this stuff. which means there are enough people with enough spare time to support this industry. WHERE ARE THESE PEOPLE WHO HAVE THIS MUCH SPARE TIME? and will you please come help me do my laundry instead?

|| i went to target today in a t-shirt. it’s december. in wisconsin. i love this so hard.

|| do you leave reviews on amazon? sometimes i do, but usually i don’t. but i almost always read them thoroughly before purchasing. maybe i should be doing this.

|| macaroni & cheese at midnight.  yyuuummmmm!


|| today, one son barked at people and the other son counted to 9. i’ll let you guess which was which…

|| there are TEN DAYS until christmas. so i have to wrap an average of approximately 280 presents each day…

|| side note: maybe i should stop wrapping stocking stuffers…

|| i made almond roca this weekend. i used to try every year, but since each pan takes a stick of butter, a cup of sugar, a bunch of almonds, and–most notably–six chocolate bars, it’s not exactly a cheap recipe to screw up. which i did. multiple times every year. so i quit making it. until this year because tahd wanted it. and it totally turned out! and between the two of us, we ate the whole pan in 24 hours!  do you know how many calories are in that? i don’t think i want to figure it out…


|| jude has screamed so much the last few days that…well…i don’t know what. but i’m losing my mind. this afternoon, he screamed, “HOLDME!HOLDME!HOLDME!HOLDMEEEEEEEEE!!!!” basically the whole time we were in the car picking up gabe. it was delightful.  sorry, dude. seatbelt laws and such.

|| side note: my mom thinks this “hold me” plea is adorable. i think maybe she should do the school pickup for a while and i’ll work at her dental office and she can reassess later.


|| “it’s probably a bone bruise,” they said. “those take a long time to heal,” they said.  at the beginning of 2013, i fell down the stairs and basically rode several on my elbow. it hurt like h3!! and looked even worse. i didn’t go to the doctor, but i think i maybe should have. i just tried to rest my elbow on my knee and it totally still hurts. that’s not normal, right? we’re working on 3 years.


|| i’m in love with my living room christmas decorations this year. like, swooning. i’m still not in love with real trees, though. needles. ugh. someday i’ll even take real pictures!

|| i’m nearly done with my christmas shopping – just a few more things to order. and i’m maybe 1/3 wrapped? probably more like 2/3 if i don’t count those darn stocking stuffers.

|| speaking (again) of stocking stuffers, tahd and i decided to do used books for each other for stocking stuffers. did you know you can get books for a penny on amazon? bless them…i’d rather have a stocking full of books than a stocking full of candy and tiny-and-basically-useless-crap. which is basically what the kids will be getting. which probably won’t help with the screaming thing, will it?

|| i’m so dying to try bullet journaling. but i’m not sure how to get started. starting makes me a little panicky. has anyone done this? do you give tutorials? it looks so perfect and organized and pretty and, maybe most importantly, like the way my brain works.

|| that’s all. to bed with me.


life rearranged

This week was a lovely summer week, full of warm weather, air conditioning, beach time, and play dates!

We had a girls’ week last week – me, Isla, my mom and my sisters.  I came home with quite a haul!  My first ModCloth order arrived on the same day, too, so it felt like a very fun shopping day!4

She’s turning into such a happy girl!

This is one of her new outfits from said shopping extravaganza.  I love it!

Also. She really wants to it up. All the time. By herself.

Hanging out with Grandma at church. I think she was eyeing the rings thinking about how tasty they’d be!

Hello there, double chin!

On Father’s Day we celebrated with Tahd and my dad. We also celebrated spring/summer birthdays – my sister’s, my dad’s, and Tahd’s. It was a very festive day!

I made Tahd a super tasty dessert.  It. looked. AWFUL! Something wasn’t quite right with it and I still don’t know what happened.  It tasted great, however, so it wasn’t a total bust!

Afternoon rest time.

This little seahorse is MAGIC!  Isla cried for 1.5 hours straight on Tuesday afternoon. Or maybe it was Monday. I can’t remember. This was the only thing that settled her. Miraculous!

I think Tahd was chasing Gabe here? Can’t remember. They tear through the house on a regular basis.  Tahd is a very good dad!

Tahd found this box of diapers in the attic from when Gabe was a baby – Huggies size 1s.  I couldn’t stomach the thought of putting them back in the attic again, so we’ve been wearing them on her even though she has long since outgrown size 1s.  It is the box that NEVER ENDS!  They just keep going!  I think we’re down to 6 now, though, so they’ll certainly be gone this weekend!

We spent the afternoon at the beach. It was lovely! I nursed Isla to sleep in the sun shelter and then built castles with Gabe at the water’s edge.  For the whole 15 minutes while she slept.  She fussed a lot while we were there, but she’ll learn. She has to get used to the fact that the beach is the best place in the world!

We went to the park with friends.

They love each other!

Also, note the laundry behind them.


Just hanging around after a little quiet time. I’m trying to institute daily reading time. Gabe reads a ton so I’m not overly concerned about his overall amount, but it would be nice to have an established quiet time each day.  He’s pretty resistant, though, and Isla’s not particularly consistent with sleep, so it may not work out for me.

Gabe was creating a whiteboard version of a video game.

We were opponents.

I did not win.

This is a teeny bit of the chaos and clutter that lives in our home.  I really need to do a giant purging. I think I’ve narrowed down the problem to the fact that we have TOO MUCH STUFF!  There’s not enough space for everything!  I have plans…big plans!


Around Here

Here’s what we’ve been up to lately…

We ended the school year with Gabe’s class’s Author’s Tea.  I think I mentioned it before, but I’m only now getting around to my camera’s memory card so here they are…three weeks later!

They were working on “Fancy Nancy” words for their writing, and this tea was a way to celebrate what they’d learn as well as show off the portfolios they’d been working hard on at the end of the year.  They were all so proud to show off their work!

Gabe loved it – he read me every word he’d written!  He also showed off his fancy ninja moves.  Which look totally natural in a suit.  Or as Gabe calls it – his “President’s costume.”

Gabe’s been spending every day of summer break building creations out of his various building toys.

This one is supposed to be a Pokemon.  Don’t know where that came from – he’s never been into Pokemon before.  But he had to build some so we could have a battle.

We finalized our Summer Bucket List. This year we put fewer items on our list (last year’s had 40…too many for us!) and used oils pastels instead of markers.  Gabe had a lot of fun experimenting with a new art medium!  I do have to say, however, that I did all the drawing on the Bucket List poster.  He was busy using pastels to illustrate exploding volcanoes and battles.

At the end of last year I decided I wanted to keep up with our 2012 photos by using Project Life.  I’m woefully behind but stumbled into a little time to start getting caught up.

So far I have January and February photos in the book. All I have left is March, April and May as well as the journaling for ALL THOSE MONTHS.  No biggie, right?

I have found a new love through Project Life, though – washi tape!  It’s so much fun, and so simple to use!

I do like how it’s coming together, though. If I were more on top of things I’d try to be more artistic with it, but at this point I’m just going for “complete.”

It’s so much fun to go back through the photos from the last several months!

Somebody got her first foods!  I intended to wait like we did with Gabe.  I think he was 6.5 months when we finally started him on solids.  He was not a fan – still isn’t, really.  Isla’s different.  She has been very curious about our foods and has been attempting to get some of them close enough to her mouth to eat.  When I noticed it again the other day I decided I was being silly to wait just because we waited with Gabe.  I figured I might as well capitalize on her interest!  She loved it.  So much!  I gave her some banana and she gobbled it up!  Today I steamed some peaches and she tried those with the same response.  I’m not sure I’m going to know what to do with a baby who actually wants to eat!

She just loves Gabe!  She watches every little thing he does.


He’s pretty fond of her, too.

So that’s us lately.  And at this moment I hear Isla waking up, ready to be fed.  So that’s all for now, I guess!

An Evening Drive

After several hours in the middle of the night with a crying baby and a day in which she didn’t want to be put down I was ready to make a quick escape when Tahd got home – later than normal, I might add – from work.  When I spend my days willing another human being to sleep I find my world gets pretty small and I get very eager to rediscover the world!  I found this to be true when Gabe was younger, too, and it’s one of the part of parenting I most struggle with.

But that’s another post for another day…

For today, I hit the road when Tahd got home – camera in hand – off to search for a little evening inspiration.  I’ve been having lots of photographic fun with Instagram lately, but I missed my big camera and it was a little bit like taking a friend out for a drive.

We live in a more urban-t0-suburban area, but not far from here the road greets rural, and I decided it was the perfect place to live in the golden hour and watch the sunset.  I didn’t quite know what I was looking for, but eventually I found a few things that made me smile.

I found this first little building nestled between some trees.

I especially liked it because I could play with the sun flares as they filtered through the trees in the foreground.

Not longer after I rounded a corner on this field.  Truthfully, I didn’t quite get the picture I wanted.  The weeds spotted the crop in such a distinctive way, but I didn’t think the farmer would appreciate me traipsing through his field uninvited to get closer.

A group of cows were pastured in a small roadside field.

Cows aren’t usually my thing, but these cows looked happy.  They wanted to have their pictures taken.


When I finally found this crooked little shed I was already driving by it and had to pull a fast u-turn.

There was just something interesting about it. I wonder how much longer it will stand.

All in all it was a lovely evening – a few hours to myself, beautiful scenery, the smell of the country…

and the knowledge that Tahd would wrestle Isla to sleep and I wouldn’t have to! 😉



life rearranged

It’s InstaFriday!

I’m having so much fun with Instagram that I haven’t picked up my big camera in weeks!  I’ll have to rectify that situation during this coming week!

I love clouds at sunset.  They make for really pretty skies!

This boy…painting a treasure box he bought the night before. It came with a pack of decorative stickers.  Of course, he chose the snake for the top of the box.  Of course, he reallyreallyreally delighted in showing it to me.

I love pictures of napping babies.

She was napping on my bed while I put laundry away.  Gabe would never have done that.  As long as I can get her to stay asleep long enough for me to get up I can putter around a bit and she’ll continue sleeping.  For a little while.   She’s sleeping now while I write this blog post.  We’ll see how long that lasts!

We caught up with some of my family over dinner (and playing) Saturday evening.

Our car started this really strange grinding noise last week.  Tahd pulled the brakes and found the left rear brake pad complete worn away. 100% gone.  Kinda freaky.  We’re getting new brakes! 😉

She really loves kisses!

I really love her!

I also have to mention I know there aren’t a lot of pictures of Gabe.  This is not because I love him less.  This is because he generally runs away.  Boo.

Gabe bought this onesie with my mom when I was pregnant with Mara.  This is the onesie he got all excited to return when we lost her.  I’m glad they didn’t take it back. 🙂

She LOVES her taggie blanket!  A dear friend made it for her and she has developed such a love for chewing on everything in reach that it has quickly become a favorite!

I looked out my bedroom window last weekend and was struck by how sweet my husband is.  He does all our laundry and loves to hang it out on our makeshift line to dry.  Do you know how nice it is to have a laundry-doing husband?  It’s nice – very, very nice!

Gabe got in a little trouble – can’t remember exactly what happened.  He had to spend some solo time sitting on the steps and when that was over I told him he had to write a little story about a boy who learned how to obey.  The top two papers are his first effort.  The bottom picture – the winning one – was his second effort.

Who loves UNO?  Gabe does!

I’ve been stuck in a bit of a cranky funk lately.  Trying to get out of it.

What did I ever do without a smart phone?  Here I’m using it as a mirror to check on Isla behind me. She was sleeping but started to stir and I wanted to know if she was awake or was going to resettle.

She woke up.  Nap over.

We went to McDonalds to celebrate Gabe’s last day of school!  He wanted to sit in the tall chairs but there was no room for the car seat so we sat behind him.

Tuesday was recall election day in Wisconsin.  There were recall efforts against our governor, lieutenant governor, and our state representative.  My pick for governor lost, but my pick for state rep won – pretty much what I expected!

Another sleeping baby!  I’m in love with this outfit.  The romper is from Gap and I got it on crazy clearance.

I love the shoes, too.  I love them so much I went back and bought a pair in the next bigger size!  Love how she so daintily crossed her feet while she slept.

Gabe builds the most amazing creations. I should have videoed this one.  It had all these cool moving parts.

We also went to a book signing for one of my favorite bloggers.

In the middle of it Isla had a blowout.  Sister has uncanny timing!

First morning of summer vacation!  Everyone slept in and then we hung out in bed while we read.  Perfection!

Out for a run (mostly a walk – but a little running).  I purposefully didn’t clean the Color Run powder off my shoes. It makes running more fun!

So in love with her!

A little library fun yesterday.  Gabe and I both got books we’ve been wanting to read.  We’ve decided to make this a weekly summer adventure.

He cracked his books the minute we hit the car!

This is SO my child – always moving, always talking!  Here he’s explaining the features of a creation he built out of Crazy Fort sticks.

He wanted to show me a YouTube video. I leaned my head onto his shoulder and snuck a picture. Love him!


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