Sunday, October 31, 2010

Happy Halloween!

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Our weekend has been crazy busy and crazy fun, leaving little energy for creative writing to accompany these great pictures.

But I think they speak for themselves: I pretty much have the cutest kids in the world; I feel like I get some mommy-brownie-points for making sure even Bailey had a costume this year; and I think people who say Erin looks like me are nuts!  She is her daddy’s carbon copy through and through!

Hope y’all enjoyed the sugary holiday as much as we did!

Thursday, October 28, 2010

On the docket

I didn’t know that being a mommy-t0-two would be so time consuming.

Seriously, I didn’t anticipate how few minutes in the day I have to indulge in “me time.”  (And that isn’t a complaint; I love putting my children’s needs first.)

One of the things that has fallen by the wayside as I learn the steps to this dance that is my mother-life right now, sadly, is my blog.  And as much as I miss interacting with you, dear reader, I also am missing the posts for selfish reasons.  I use this blog so much as a family journal, and a year from now, I’m going to see that 2010 – such a big year for us – is sadly lacking in the documentation category.

So, in an attempt to hold myself accountable (though, yeah, me and goal-meeting?  Not so much of that going on around here lately), here are some of the posts I hope to knock out before the holidays:

  • 30 x 30 recap/closing
  • Halloween decorations
  • Halloween party
  • Seth’s first “report card”
  • My recent love affair with a new online shopping site
  • The bump that will not go away on Seth’s head
  • our getaway to Vegas
  • Nonna’s fall trip to TN
  • Seth’s birthday party 
  • Family pictures
  • Balsmeyer trip to TN
  • Erin’s nursery – with new wall art additions
  • Girls’ Night Out adventures
  • Erin’s milestones thus far (they are coming fast and furious!)

Honestly, there are dozens more that, embarrassingly, go all the way back to the county fair in July, salmon fishing in August, and Labor Day festivities.  And maybe they’ll get posts, and maybe they won’t.

But everybody keeps telling me to make time for myself, and what I love, and this blog is one of those things I love, so….

Here’s to carving out some time for this momma to put her Writer Chic hat back on.

Monday, October 18, 2010


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I put this picture up on Facebook, and some girlfriends said it makes Erin look too scary.

But I think it looks cool.  All I did was apply the “painting” app from my camera to a picture I snapped of Erin looking out the door the other day.

Her eyes really are that big!  And it was just a coincidence that she had on her Old Navy ghost onesie.

What’s your vote?  Spooky or not?

Wednesday, October 13, 2010


I’d rather live with it – with all its hassles and drawbacks and frustrations – than without it.

But the fact that I’ve been sitting on hold to speak with a live person for over 18 minutes, just to have someone try to tell me why I can’t connect to Internet Explorer is about to send me through the roof.

I realize it’d probably be healthy for me to “unplug” for a while.  But, man, I’d have rather made that choice on my own, rather than my computer just getting all I-don't-want-to-do-your-bidding-anymore on me.

No Facebook conversations with my mother-in-law about where to get the final pieces of Seth’s Halloween costume.

No more Skype conversations with my mom, so she can witness, first-hand, Erin’s newfound skills of crawling backwards.

No more mass emails regarding a much-anticipated girls’ night out to The Melting Pot.

I mean, I’ll get this up and running eventually, but as for the moment….it’s just me and the elevator music.


Tuesday, October 12, 2010

The best bad day

I can count on one hand the number of times Jim has sent me flowers – like, someone from the florist shows up on the doorstep because he thought to brighten my day with some posies.

I had the worst day ever recently.

Though I suppose I’d have to admit that since, in hindsight, I can’t hardly remember what made it so bad, I guess you could say “worst day ever” is a little dramatic.

Anyway.  It was a bad day.  I was feeling inadequate, overwhelmed, misunderstood.  And (again, I can’t remember) I either (a) took it out on Jim, or (b) he picked up on it.   If I had to guess, I’d say (a).  Not because it’d be unusual for him to pick up on it; it’s just more likely that I was dumping on him.

Either way, he went out of his way to call our local florist and walk them, step by step, through the arrangement he wanted them to fashion for me.  He was specific: lilies were okay, but no stargazers (I’m allergic); fall colors (my favorite); and confetti roses (like the ones in my wedding bouquet).

I even got a heavenly-scented candle along with the buds – a chocolate raspberry one.   (Hello!  I want to eat the wax, it smells SO good!)

If I’d been doing better with blogging, this would have been the post to go up last week on our fifth wedding anniversary.  But I haven’t been, so it didn’t.  But the important thing is that I’m bragging on him now.

Thank you, Jim, for making my bad days a whole lot better, flowers or no.  I love you.

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Monday, October 11, 2010

Brotherly Suds

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I’m sorry.

Maybe you’re rolling your eyes on the other side of the screen.

But I love it.  The look on her face.  The memory of his sweet voice, “I wash your hair, Er-bear.”  The water on the floor and the load of towels ready to be washed.  I love it all.

Friday, October 8, 2010

4 months/5 months…where are the days going?

They say that the older you get, the faster time moves.


Erin “just” turned 3 months old.  Then I blinked, and blinked again, and now she is four five months old.

Somewhere, with the turning of the leaves, my bean has grown.  She is a totally different baby – still tiny, but strong.  Loud.  Opinionated.  Charming.  Starting to sit up (on her own), trying to crawl (but only going backwards).  Her personality is bursting forth in dazzling fashion.  She loves no one more than her big brother.  She does not hold still; her hands are always reaching out to touch, feel, discover (or, grab and chew, as evidenced below).  Her feet are always kicking, twitching, swinging upward to her open mouth (as evidenced above).

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I was so afraid to have a daughter, and yet, here I sit, staring across the room at the brightest light in my life.

The only thing, sweet girl, that makes the rapid passage of time bearable, is knowing that each day will bring new and wonderful adventures in discovery; knowing that if I love you this much today, I’ll only love you this much more tomorrow.

PS, for administrative purposes: Happy 5th anniversary, Jim.  I love you, as I do Seth and Erin, so much more today than I did yesterday, and eons more than the day we said “I do.”  Thank you for partnering with me, daily, in this crazy, wonderful life of ours.

Monday, October 4, 2010

What fall break has taught me so far

Around these parts, schools are letting out for fall break.

It is creeping up on noon, and it hasn’t broken 60 degrees yet today.  I’ve finally had to break down and turn on the furnace, since Erin’s feet weren’t staying warm, no matter my efforts.

I enjoyed a toasty bagel and a strong cup of coffee with a splash of amaretto creamer this morning, and thought to myself, I’m going to color my hair.

I had a box of at-home color – a nice, no-bells-or-whistles shade of darker brown (Clairol #30, for anyone wondering) just to cover up the remnants of my summer highlights.

So, with Erin snoozing, and Seth enthralled (again) with Up, I set to do my ‘do.

And here is the lesson I’ve learned.

No matter how safe the color, no matter how perfect your technique, no matter how carefully you follow the application directions, IF your timing were to get “off” (say, due to a horrendous diaper malfunction) and you were unable to wash out your color at the recommended 25-minute mark, THEN you just might end up with color a little darker than planned.


It’s not bad.  I wouldn’t go so far as to say it’s a botched job.  But, whoa.  It is for sure brown. DARK brown.  Like everybody-is-going-to-think-I-hit-30-last-week-and-went-off-to-the-dark-side brown.

But the important thing is that Erin’s diaper got changed before the poop went up her sleeves (which, by the way, happened Saturday.  That was fun.).

So, happy baby = happy momma.

Even if I am a little fearful Jim is going to come home and call me Elvira. ;)

Friday, October 1, 2010

Happy October!!!

I have to admit, I’m not 100% happy with how our porch turned out this year.  As I arranged things earlier this week, I kept thinking, “it was better last year.”  But then I pulled up the pictures from last year; other than the fact that last year, we had three small mums (as opposed to this years’ two gargantuan ones) and a handful more little pumpkins, it really isn’t as “better” as I thought.

Anyway, all that to say, I definitely see myself tweaking and fluffing some more in the coming weeks.  But for now, here is how we are welcoming fall this year.

Pumpkins, and a peanut. ;)

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Froofed up wreath.
(I’d forgotten where our usual one had been stored, so I made a new one (see photo above).  When I found the original (smaller) wreath, I just layered them up.  You can’t quite see all the “WELCOME” letters, but I think you still get the gist.)

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If you’re wondering why my pumpkins are so shiny, it’s because I spray them with Krylon acrylic indoor/outdoor clear coat.  Last year, it kept the pumpkins from rotting or being eaten for the full 2 months we had them out in the elements.

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Bejeweled spider candlestick (Pottery Barn).

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The perfect perch for the palest of pumpkins.

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Just imagine that the mums have already bloomed…

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I think the green pumpkin on the table is my favorite this year.

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Still needs a little something….but what?

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There, that’s better. ;)

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And forgive the quality of these next pics….stupid flash/no flash rule…. but here are the few fall touches I’ve set out inside:

A woven basket ($1 garage sale find) filled with cinnamon hazelnut potpourri; a pair of grapevine pumpkins set on the mantel among the regular decor (‘08 Target clearance!!!); and a new tradition of a framed picture of my trick-or-treater in his past Halloween costumes.  This picture will be more of a challenge now that I have two little monsters to wrangle for a photo shoot. ;)

And last but certainly not least….

Homemade beef stew bubbling in the dutch oven.  Mmmmmm!
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Seeing as how I’ve yet to make my inaugural loaf of chocolate chip pumpkin bread, I’ll have to take my carbs in garlic bread form.  (Cry me a river, I know!)

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Now that the temperatures have finally settled well below the 95-degrees we’ve been having, I think it’s safe to say, FALL IS HERE!!!