Thursday, March 31, 2016

Strawberries in the End

We have had quite a week, y'all. Just as every other Spring before has begun, this one has been full and even a little frantic- chaotic even- with all the ups and downs that one would expect from that kind of energy. This week has been no exception.

Everyone is restless. Everyone is a little edgy. Everyone is kinda bouncing off the walls.

Most of the photos I've taken this week have been a mess, which truly represents the mood du jour but which doesn't make for a very pretty blog post.

This one is a good one, though. A moment, on the last day of March, where there is morning light, a brief pause, some buds, some green, and some strawberry plants.

So instead of recapping the month gone by with tales of stress, loss, conflict and frustration I choose to focus on this moment, and the ones that were like this, peppered throughout the other stuff.

On that note, so long March. It's been real... but at least there were strawberries in the end.

Tuesday, March 29, 2016

Annual March to the Mailbox

I've unintentionally started a birthday tradition for my Littles, and as all good family traditions go, it's growing to sustain itself without (much of) my influence.

For every kid party so far we've managed to produce and send out "snail mail" invitations, and as both kids' awareness and appreciation have grown so has their participation in the ritual. As a given party day approaches, they start asking, When are we making invitations?, When can I start helping?, and most importantly When do I get to take them to the mailbox?

By far their favorite part of the process is Mailing The Invites. Once envelopes have been stuffed, sealed, addressed and stamped, I hand the stack over and they are very seriously carried down the driveway and tucked into the mailbox.

I've been told the best part is putting the flag up.

I didn't realize how loved this process was until the ride home from picking Sissy up from school yesterday when I heard Henry practically yell from the backseat "Sissy! I finally got to mailbox my birthday party invitations today!"

I caught myself wondering when (because let's face it, it'll happen) this tradition will taper off in lieu of digital invites or word-of-mouth or whatever, and it kinda made me a little bummed to think about it. The excitement, anticipation, and chatter of my soon-to-be-another-year-older kiddo while walking down the driveway? That kinda makes the hassle of the ol' paper invite process worth it.


For now.

Monday, March 28, 2016

Easter at Home

For all the years that we've been together as a family our Easter tradition has been pretty much the same. Celebrating, eating way way too much, and usually driving quite a while both ways to be a part of it all. This year, however, circumstances shifted our tradition and kept us at home. Though we felt the absence of the ones drawn away for the weekend, being at home and gathered around our own table with our wild Littles running after balloons, hidden eggs, and eventually each other (there was a lot of sugar energy to be burned off) was actually kinda perfect.

Who knows where we'll find ourselves next year... or quite frankly, at the next holiday... but this Easter we learned that change can be a struggle, a headache, and can sometimes bring heartache, but change can also bring the opportunity for peace, joy and light. You don't have to loose your appreciation for The Way Things Were to be able to find enjoyment in what has changed, you just have to be willing to stay open to What Comes Next.

Hoping all had a great Spring-warmed table-filled well-loved weekend!

Saturday, March 26, 2016


To do:

  • Hardboil/dye/make deviled eggs
  • Clean and prep strawberries for shortcake
  • Mix dough for dinner rolls and set it to risin'
  • Make vegetarian entree
  • Chill sparkling wine for mimosas
  • Clean potties
  • Vacuum (and mop? maybe not...) floors
  • Set table
  • Hide eggs
  • Clean off back porch
Um, we may need a break to recover from this weekend when it's all said and done! But of course this prep work is specifically so we can enjoy Easter with the Littles, family, and friends we love... the fruits of our work will provide our refreshment.

That and a beer on the cleaned-off porch this evening.

Until then, though, we'd better get to work!

Thursday, March 24, 2016

A Little Chalk

We had a warm, sunny afternoon yesterday and spent it weeding front flower beds, sweeping off the front porch, and then we finished our spiffying-up with a little Easter-inspired sidewalk chalk..................................... and now it's raining. Aaaah well, c'est la vie, right? We'll just have an even cleaner slate tomorrow to draw even fancier bunnies and eggs! Or at least that's how I'll sell it when my little artists get up and see their art washing away in little rainbow rivulets.

They did work hard on all those colorful eggs, though, so I think the kids will be glad I captured a few pictures before it all washed away!

C'est la vie!

Wednesday, March 23, 2016

A Box for Treasure

My sweet grandmother-in-law let me pick through her garage the other weekend, and didn't even blink at the little pile of treasures I found and loaded into my car.

Among them was the coolest metal box evah- I'm not sure what it originally was- which made it home with me to be cleaned up and stashed for juuuuust the right use.

This morning the perfect use for it came to me: a new seed box. I've needed something bigger and sturdier for quite a while, but have been making my old one do (it was once a sidewalk chalk box).

Now I have a ventilated box with an attached lid that won't blow away, and all my seed packets fit inside with room to spare... and it looks cool, too!

Note to self: when it comes time to buy seeds for a garden again, do not buy any more dill! I saved way more than I remembered... and now I can see I'm set for quite a while!

Thanks for the great box, Nanny!

Tuesday, March 22, 2016

Mornings With Him

As the days grow longer and warmer, I am acutely aware of the looming day when Henry will head off to school with Sissy to start his first day of Kindergarten and I'll be left with the majority of the days to myself.

It'll be a bittersweet day for me- I had to totally reinvent myself to be able to find contentment at home- all day long, solo- with immature little people. Now I'll have to morph into something new again and I'm not sure what that'll look like quite yet. I have my ideas, but I'll have to figure it out as I go because who really knows, ya know?

But for now- as March draws to a close and only a couple more months of school plus the summer is all that sits between me and redefinition- I'm making a conscious effort to savor these days with my Last Little At Home. Through the pouting, the goofiness, the projects and the errands I am trying my best to soak it all in and never take for granted this time left with him. I know it'll be just as amazing to watch him in a new role as classmate and friend... but I will forever treasure these mornings with him- just him- at the end of quite an era.

Sunday, March 20, 2016

Spring and Babysitting

A friend of mine is building me a little bee box for capturing swarms, and in exchange I'm helping him build up his flock with a few new pullets. They came in a little earlier than he was expecting, so we get to 'babysit' until he can come get his little girls! And what better timing for a visit from a few precious little fluff balls than the first day of Spring?

Add to this our usual foraging, flowers, and feasting, and I think I can safely say we did a good job welcoming Spring this year! The kids think so, anyway!

(I think the babies won the day even over the snickerdoodle cake though... and if you're wondering if Audrey picked out her outfit just for the first day of Spring, yes. Yes she did.)

Saturday, March 19, 2016

Visiting :: Rough Creek Lodge

This is a very picture-heavy post, and if you're kinda meh on pics of other peoples' vacations, beware.

 In summary of day one: warm, sunny, and full of wiggles and running and sugar and not sleeping.

Day two summary: windy and cooler with wild animals and fishing and a fancy kid-absent dinner with beautiful hazy sunset views.

Day three summary: misty, cold, windy... so of course the day we spent almost completely outside boating, fishing, hiking, fossil hunting... and s'mores.

Our fourth and last day was so cold and windy we decided to cut it short and check out, and we were home in time for lunch and normal(ish) naps.

We are pooped but content, and tomorrow we will do laundry! Lots and lots of laundry.