Sunday, August 31, 2014

Just What I Needed

I really needed a day full of good company and sunshine. I need to feel like myself.

Yesterday provided. A day on a lake with a dozen friends and a half dozen kids, plenty of things to paddle or pedal, farm grown food spilling from every corner, dance routines planned but never actualized. It was the sort of day that just felt right.

This summer hasn't been my favorite, but yesterday sure tried hard to make up for it.

Monday, August 25, 2014

This Weekend We: Bridal Shower

One of my little sisters is getting married in a little over a month. She's the first in our family to be having a traditional wedding with all the bells and whistles, or at least, most of the bells and whistles. 

I was excited to get to plan a party more elegant than most of the gatherings I put together. Most of my parties are potluck and rag tag, and perfectly suited to how I like things done. But for Claire's shower, I wanted to plan something really special. So we rented tables and chairs, plates and silver ware, arranged dozens of flowers and strung lights in an attempt to recreate this scene.  I was excited to craft a beautiful, perfect evening, and in my excitement I may have lost sight of the real purpose of the party: to celebrate Claire and the beautiful and sometimes overwhelming journey she's about to embark on. 

Because I had so completely lost sight, I did not handle the disappointment of unpleasant weather well. After weeks of nearly perfect weather, Saturday brought rain and wind and grey skies. It sent people inside, and meant that the big, sit down, family style meal I had planned and prepared was replaced with dinner plates balancing on laps and end tables. 

As I said, I did not handle my disappointment every gracefully, but luckily in the few photos that I did manage to get of the evening, I see that most everyone else was able to enjoy the evening as it was, not distracted by what it might have been. 

Although I did not fully appreciate it in the moment, I can now look back and recognize how special it is when people from all walks of life come to celebrate a single person, in this case my beautiful, loyal, strong-willed sister, the embodiment of a fiery redhead if there ever was one.

Monday, August 11, 2014


I'm trying hard not to define this summer in terms of its lows, not to forget that despite some sad, difficult times, there have been wonderful moments not to be discredited.

I've  found that when I'm sad, I don't much feel inclined to take pictures or find words. In fact, I don't feel inclined to do much of anything.

On Wednesday I go back to school. While I will miss slow mornings spent with my kids and afternoons at the water's edge,  I am ready to return to the routine, to busy my mind.

I don't want to write this summer off though, because even if their mama was not quite her best self, I think my kids were happy and carefree.  And this was the summer we learned that come winter, we will be a family of six.

It's time to drag myself out of my slump and celebrate. Celebrate time spent at the ocean, the end of summer, and having just three children.

Sunday, July 27, 2014

Corners and Crannies: One Year Here

One year ago yesterday we settled on our house, six months after putting a contract on it. Although there are times that I worry that I might not have the courage to live in an old house, that the sagging floors and old roof coupled with finances too limited to fix each ache and pain, make me too damn nervous. 

But I love our house. And I love the projects that we have completed. And mostly I look forward to the days that will bring the completion of more projects.

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Favorite Things: 01

Sometimes when we say something is a guilty pleasure, we just mean that we like something that isn't very cool. I think we most often mean "Embarrassing Pleasures."

This is not an embarrassing pleasure because how could I be embarrassed by this-- it's cool, really cool, I'm certain even all the cool people would agree. However, it is actually guilt inducing. I spent way too much money on it in a brief moment that I thought for some confusing reason that we had the extra money to spare. We did not. However, considering that the shipping was half the cost, there is no sending her back, and so I get to enjoy her, even if the guilt remains.

Design coffee table books are one of my new favorite things. Until we put an offer on our house last January, I didn't really care about decorating much. However, in the past year it has become something of a problem. An actual problem.  I get envious of other people's homes and it makes me want things I can't have. I don't want to be jealous or materialistic or financially irresponsible, all of which are frequent symptoms of my Pintrest/ DesignSponge binges.

Regardless, I love flipping through design/ decorating books. And this one is possibly my all-time favorite. Now if only Arlo would stop trying to force me into being a decent mother when all I want to do is stare at the pretty rooms. Pretty rooms, that I might add, somehow don't make me feel all the same unpleasant jealous reactions I sometimes experience. Something about these homes and spaces make me feel good, make it easier for me to look around my own house with a fresh set of eyes and feel as though I might have actually created the type of space I had been hoping for.

So if you are in the market for a really good coffee table book and you either a) have the money to spare or b) accidentally think you have the money to spare, maybe you want to go buy Spaces by Frankie Magazine.

Sena might love this book even more than me. She spends hours pouring of the pictures. Have I mentioned how cool I think that kid is?