Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Little Beauty...


Found this little guy perched on top of the hummingbird feeder as I'm working in the office....Looked out the window and saw him....he was just waiting for me to take his pic!

Mischief Maker from the get-go...



Fall brings the HIGH HIGH cuteness factor of "winter jammies"!  Evan got into the snack drawer this morning and also found a cookbook (he suggested a splendid recipe for dinner tonight).  He avoided any discipline (even though there was pretzel salt all over!) because he's just too cute and the first few times your child "gets into mischief" it seems like a novelty.  (that wears off REAL fast I might add!)  Try me again tomorrow!  Evan is fully crawling now and finding the most ridiculous and dangerous things to get him into trouble.

What in the world?

We took a walk to the park today and found these weird but cool round, dried things....?????  We added them to our pumpkins and gourd decorations.  You just never know what you are gonna find on a walk to the park on a lovely fall Wednesday!  Adventures waiting around every corner! 

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Falling into Fall...


The vibe of Fall is in the air.  I can feel it.  I can see some trees changing color in the neighborhood.  On our recent trip to Door County I pointed out to Lauren some of the changing trees and told her to "keep her eyes peeled" for more on the long drive. Now this is all she points out to me wherever we go!

Today she noticed the tree that is most visible from our big windows in the room of our house where we spend 95% of our time.  "Mom, I didn't see it before!  It's changing colors!"  "Mom, the sky looks peach tonight." (oh my heart just melts for you my precious firstborn.  I could eat you up like a honey crisp apple)

Oh how I crave my first honey crisp apple of the Fall.  Orchards, markets, pumpkin patches, harvest fests..Lauren got two baby pumpkins and two gourds at the grocery store this week and it was so exciting for her it was like I was buying her a giant bag of Skittles and not setting a limit on how many she could eat.  "This one is for me and this one is for brother."

Fall is when I feel most alive.  I can begin to switch my wardrobe over to long sleeved tee's and sweaters and jeans and "cover up."  The kids can transition to comfy, cozy pants and corduroys.  (Oh for the love of a 9- month old in brown wide-wale cord BIBS.  PLEASE.)

I made my first kettle of soup and baked brownies and roasted squash and beets. Something about Fall just sets me in motion


Wednesday, September 16, 2009

The Big Boat Shoe Trade...


I am not a pack-rat.  I am the biggest donater, get-rid-of-it, didn't wear it in the last 3 months-resale it, craigslister seller, purge-and-feel-the-goodness sort of gal around.  I don't keep useless things.  I abide by the philosophy that when you bring something new into the house you must get rid of something that's been in the house for awhile that is not useful.  I mean all this just means I'm really organized and neat and tidy and it's my personal way of living a life of moderately good mental health!!!!!!! 

However, I must admit that I have a pair of shoes in my possession that are well over 20 years old.  I will never wear them in public (until the big debut) and I've moved them from my parent's house, to the dorms at college, to two different college houses, to an Illinois apartment and house, and now this second Illinois house where I currently abide.  I will NEVER get rid of these beauties. 

My best friend Amy and I "traded" shoes in (guessing here) junior year.  Remember when "deck" shoes or what others called "boat" shoes were all the rage?  Well, Amy and I saved our babysitting money, birthday money, begged, borrowed and stealed to get our "deck" shoes of choice.  Mine were the dark brown penny loafers with the classic trademark white sole.  I never did put pennies in the hole.  I adored them.  They were so in fashion and cool and they made me feel cool with a capital C.  Amy got the light tan tie version with the wider white sole and did the fancy knot that enabled you to slip in and out of said shoe without tying or untying. 

Amy moved to Arizona before our Senior year of high school and part of our "hanging onto each other" as best friends was quite possibly the big boat shoe trade.  Well, we just celebrated our twenty year class reunion this past July and this got me thinking about these beloved shoes.  There is just something about keeping something for so long that kinda gets you to the point of ........."well, I can't get rid of them NOW!"  The sole is so worn that you can see the inner makings of the shoe peeking back at you.  All the more reason to LOVE them!

But it goes beyond that.  I have a dream of owning a sailboat someday.  The dream includes the whole "boater lifestyle" of sailing, adventure, socializing, drinking, eating, entertaining on deck, hanging out at marinas, etc.  WELL, you NEED boat shoes if you are going to own a boat!  So, I kid you not, I have kept these boat shoes for the day I step onto the deck of my very own sailboat.  I will be wearing these shoes and realizing the dream.  And Amy will still be with me.  We are still friends today.  We have memories that go beyond these shoes. 

Seeing these shoes in my closet reminds me of the dream.  It reminds me of the dreams I still have for "someday."  Dreams that still ignite the passion deep down in my gut.  Beyond the kids.  Beyond all the day to day.   I will never get rid of these shoes.  These shoes are just some sort of magic to me.  And wouldnt' it be a HOOT if I gave the shoes to Lauren someday?  I told her the whole story and she probably forgot most of it.  I put these shoes on yesterday to take the photo and they just felt good on my feet.  I kept them on for a while and Lauren kept saying........."why do you have those shoes on mom?"  " are you gonna wear those outside the house mom?"  "what's the story again mom?"

The story is that you need to keep dreams alive.  Even if it's just when you see the shoes in the closet.  It's that important.  It's that good.


Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Poem of the day...


I recently acquired "The Best-Loved Poems of Jacquieline Kennedy Onassis" that Caroline Kennedy selected and introduced in a book.  Let's not even go there with my delight at it being $1.00 at a garage sale.  Now it is in my collection and I adore it.  This is one of my all time favorite poems and when I'm emotional about something it speaks to me in so many ways.  I was thinking about my Dad yesterday and this just seems appropriate.  He will be gone 8 years on Nov. 17, 2009....which just so happens to be my daughter's birthday.  So cool.  The circle of life and all that good stuff.....
Caroline states in her introduction..."Now that I have my own children, I understand in a new way that if you love something, your children will want to love it too.  As parents, we have a chance to help our children go beyond us, and to start them off on a lifelong voyage of discovery and self-discovery.  I hope poetry will become part of my children's lives, your life, and then your children's, not only because of the pleasure it will bring , bet because the power of ideas, and the ability to express them, is the greatest power we have."
I cannot say how lovely this paragraph this is and how it makes me realize the incredible job we have as parents.

somewhere i have never travelled, gladly beyond

by E. E. Cummings

somewhere i have never travelled, gladly beyond
any experience, your eyes have their silence:
in your most frail gesture are things which enclose me,
or which i cannot touch because they are too near

your slightest look easily will unclose me
though i have closed myself as fingers,
you open always petal by petal myself as Spring opens
(touching skilfully,mysteriously) her first rose

or if your wish be to close me, i and
my life will shut very beautifully, suddenly,
as when the heart of this flower imagines
the snow carefully everywhere descending;

nothing which we are to perceive in this world equals
the power of your intense fragility: whose texture
compels me with the color of its countries,
rendering death and forever with each breathing

(i do not know what it is about you that closes
and opens;only something in me understands
the voice of your eyes is deeper than all roses)
nobody,not even the rain,has such small hands

Who knew 2.5 hours could be so darn good?

Okay, remember when I used to just write and write and write WORDS and not post any pictures?  Well, I've realized the picture thing is really fun, easy, and not time consuming at all.  I really love taking pictures and sharing them with you.  However, it's the writing that is supposed to be the core of a blog so I thought I'd get back to the basics here.  
Lauren started preschool today.  This was her second year for preschool, she just started a new school today.  We had open house last Thursday so that was prep day number one.  That event worked out very well in terms of pre-prepping for "going live" today.  I thought for sure she would still cry or act apprehensive because for the first 15 minutes of open house she had to have one hand touching me and one hand touching Dad.  I bribed her with a "treat."  Yes, I did.  She didn't want a toy or anything expensive.  She wanted a lousy $1.75 berry ice cream treat from Costco.  If only the rest of my bribes with her could remain this cheap and easy!  
She unbuckled herself, gave me a kiss, asked me what I would do while she was at school (brother nap, me workout) and took Miss Linda by the hand and didn't look back.  WOW!  This is what I dreamed of.  This is what I wanted so badly last year.  I was so proud of her.  She is growing up.  She is strong, smart, independent and beautiful.  She is still my baby girl.
I cried as I pulled away.  The first of a million times that I will cry because of all this overwhelming joy and love.  Who knew motherhood would be THIS incredible?  Wow.  It never ceases to amaze me.

Saturday, September 12, 2009

Okay, last tablecloth rant....I promise!

My Great Aunt had this fabric remnant from her mother and passed the love and goodness onto to me.  My G-Aunt is 78 so can you even imagine how old this is?  And it's in perfect condition.  Again, I must quote Rachel Zoe and say "I DIE."  Maybe I should have been a 1950s housewife or something because these vintage prints make me SO SO happy!  I mean really, check out these images!  My G-Aunts mother worked at a department store and had access to fabric remnants that she would use as tablecloths and runners.  I love this family history and I hope to pass all these on to Lauren.  (If I have anything to say about it she will be obsessed with cool, old family stuff !)  My house is filled with these kind of treasures and it makes for great conversation pieces and fills me with joy. 

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Cuteness Factor HIGH.

My Best friend and I have this saying....(come on, it's a joke and it's funny....lighten up)  "You are too cute to live."  Look at those little teeth?  How about his grandmother holding him, hiding her face from the picuture creating a little "wig" for Evan?  Too funny!

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Project on the horizon...

So I saw a delightful driftwood mirror on a high-end website or blog.  TOO COOL.  It spoke to me in so many ways.  So my daughter and I are collecting driftwood from all our trips and plan to make one as soon as we have enough wood to cover a mirror.  This was our recent bounty from our trip to Door County, WI.  I cannot wait to show you the finished product!  I have been collecting seashells, beach glass, driftwood and lots of other found objects from hikes, beach walks, and strolls here and there all my life.  Lauren is so into collecting our treasures....I love it! 

more of the little things...

FINDING JOY AND BEAUTY IN THE ORDINARY. 
It's my mantra!

Obsessed with tablecloths!

Okay, so I will admit that I've got this new fascination with vintage prints.  My Great Aunt recently passed down some ridiculously fab tablecloths and runners in the above prints.  I mean are you kidding me?  And on a recent trek to Door County, WI I spotted matching napkins for the raspberry/apple/grape cloth at a super cool resale shop that specializes in all things vintage cool.  So weird how those things happen.  Shut it down for the TERRY CLOTH green and blue flowered one  with FRINGE on the edges no less........As Rachel Zoe would say "I die."  hahahahaha