The changing of the calendar in our home always brings about a little reflection and eager anticipation.

I have a weekly, color coded- semester based calendar. Then I have the month with important dates calendar.


Typically September has been a month full of transition in our house with summer ending and school starting. This year was busier than most with Joe’s class, both of the boys starting homework, my classes requiring reading/writing, and my teaching that requires planning/grading.
That thankful banner was found in Target’s dollar bin and I am hoping that phrase will carry us through this next season. When we gather around the table at dinner we try to name what we are grateful for. A tiny tradition around our tiny table, training our hearts to stay in a posture of thanks.

DSC01466I also look notice the little reminders: a fruit bowl showing signs of summer having gone before we had our proper good-bye. I like it that way, really. Recently I couldn’t find any ripe nectarines in the market so I reached for pears and apples. I fondly reminisce about all those cooling batches of pear sauce for babies. Now pears are tossed into lunch bags because our house continues to change and grow.


I welcome fall. I look forward to a chill in the air, an excuse to drink cider, scarves, and sweaters. The windows are open and we are waiting.

Super Saturday

Some Saturdays I don’t have school, I don’t have homework, I don’t have a meeting…and that means it is SUPER!


My first soccer game of the season


watching Henry play with the Blue Ice Monsters. He scored a goal today and yes, I was the mom yelling cheering loudly in the heat like a crazy woman mom. Meanwhile Paul stayed up in this tree.


There wasn’t a ton of shade and he was enjoying the breeze up high. He was also thrilled to hear me say that he seemed to camouflage in the tree when I was far away.


As soon as the game ended we packed up and headed out for some swimming


and celebrating of this girl turning one. She is starting to walk and still rockin’ the mohawk. Look at that face!


Meanwhile these little cousins were laughing their heads off at making “lattes”

DSC01428 and then serving them up to Jessica. Over and over, these three year olds sat in anticipation.
DSC01417 They would crack up over saying it was bath water


and I would laugh in the doorway watching the game. A little soap, cup, and imagination can transform a bath. It’s always good to see family, only wish we lived closer. Those two don’t know it but we are trying to scheme up a date to Pretend City in the next couple of months. I know they would love it.

The Letter “P”

Today was filled with “P’s”
DSC01359 starting with a ponytail (her hair is still a tad short) and some practicing of patience.
DSC01356 She insisted we paint (because remember today she is in charge) with watercolor. That’s a turkey with some trees in the background.
DSC01374 We pampered ourselves
DSC01378 with some “pail nolish” (her pronunciation, not mine)
DSC01383 which quickly became a patterning and counting game.DSC01381After watching her paint her nails
DSC01384 I went with a wild look: polka dots.DSC01361 But my favorite might have been the project she thought of after seeing an empty phone box belonging to Joe. It reminded her of the band-aid box at her preschool. She wanted to decorate it and put our band-aids in it. So clever and she doesn’t even realize what a fan I am of repurposing.
DSC01364So we found our label maker, gathered stickers, rifled through wash tape, and used scissors. It was so fun and I realized this is probably our first official craft experience together.DSC01365
It turned out fun and functional. My favorite type of craft.
This was all before noon, when we had to go pick up Henry. I feel so productive in a non stressful, relaxed kind of way. T.G.I.F.

Word Salad

I thought I would be a better record keeper of the mix ups my kids make in speech. I love it. I always crack up and if I don’t write them down, my brain can’t always recall them later. But here is the latest versions from our toddler Olivine:


She loves this book (The Very Hungry Caterpillar by Eric Carle) and in particular these two pages. Where she says with expression “He was a BIG, FAT caterpillar!” and corrects me if I get it wrong. He goes into a Raccoon for two weeks. Look at the picture. It’s a raccoon. Not a cocoon. And so we don’t argue, I just agree.


There is also this Disney book with old artwork I love. She doesn’t know Mickey Mouse. She doesn’t like the name. She says no everytime and says “those are Minnie Mouses.” She really likes Minnie. This might be the influence of her cousin Fiona.

Then there is the me singing “This little light of mine” but she says it is really “this little light a my.” If I sing it too slow and she hears me singing, she will stop the song. I guess I sung it to her little baby brain so much it only makes sense her head that one way.

The best this week, has been asking to go buy cereal. When asked what kind she says “you know, my favorite, Chucky Charms.” You know what she means, as do I. But then my response is: “When they sell that cereal, I will buy it.” Sounds perfect for Halloween. Olivine needs to be hired on some marketing team. Scary, fun foods.

Apple Pumpkin Muffins

I sampled some yummy mini muffins on Monday night. Maybe it was the fog creeping across the moon or the breeze that had me tucked in a sweater, but it’s changing to fall. Then I found a recipe on line for Paul’s homework. We baked yesterday afternoon, after a little homework session around the table.


There was an audience that snacked on apple slices while Paul measured, mixed, and poured. I might have even heard Henry telling Paul that he can’t wait to be in second grade. He wants muffin homework instead of writing letters and numbers.


Mmmm..pumpkin pie spice and some cinnamon added inside and on top.


While it baked, Paul complete his writing homework to identify the steps in his process.


And then we called in the gang for feasting. Yes, we dipped muffins in pumpkin yogurt and this was all before dinner.


It was a quiet afternoon. Olivine stayed home today (coughing and needing breathing treatments) and napped for over two hours. I overheard her talking to Henry’s bear, telling him that she was his mommy and going to take care of him while Henry was at school. Looks like  she fell asleep snuggling him tight.


I did homework, wrote letters, and called a friend. You know, the things a lady does when she no longer has a full time job.


Off to pick up kids. Part of Paul’s homework is to make a snack and write out the steps. I am thinking pumpkin apple muffins this afternoon. I saw a recipe online I want to try. Perfect excuse, it’s homework that tastes good.


Luckily I have saved puzzles and games from the boys for this little girl. She loves problem solving. The bonus is these are wooden and colorful. Simple pictures with one word labels, improvising is encouraged.


She makes a big pile and looks at the colors and shapes compared to the picture card.


The borders of the cards are color coded for difficulty and she doesn’t seem to notice. She chooses images she likes and finds a starting point, never giving up. I watched as she twisted and turned pieces to fit like she wanted.


I love watching and listening to her talk it out. She makes thinking faces. Sometimes her tongue peeks out, just like when I watch Joe doing calligraphy. It is a look of concentration.


And as she finishes each one she has such a strong sense of pride in her eyes. She sat there for over thirty minutes. I would hang out for a little bit, slip out and slip back in. She didn’t need me there.

We stayed close to home this morning since she is feeling a bit under the weather. Hopefully nothing too big, but she did have a fever that started yesterday. She slept miserably, lots of moaning, but today seemed better with medicine.


Story of the Year

I may have already told you about my friend Jen and her new babies. But I am still so excited and although I don’t have her pictures to share (they are amazing) I can share her story.


This is a girl I met in college and lived with in France. She is a poet, a teacher, a friend, and a mother. She already has one cutie pie and when we saw each other last spring, she was pregnant with number two. We had all sorts of conversations about going from one to two kids.

And then late in her pregnancy she found out she was having triplets. Three babies: two boys and a girl.DSC00623

All advice I had then and now is out the window. But I did find these cute shirts because I can’t be the neighbor (she lives in Minnesota) who holds the babies or brings over food. Completely impractical gift, I know. But perfectly cute-yes.

So she gets my story of the year and whole bunch of prayers every time I think of her. If I can save up the money I will fly out there in the next year. The chance to hold three babies feels like a once in a lifetime.

I miss you Jen.

And like I said before “you’ve got this!”


also known around here as “wipe out!”


It’s the one day I pick Henry up, instead of childcare. The three of us usually eat lunch at a park and take in some sunshine.


She ran around barefoot and wanted us to call her “Elsa.”


I laid down under a tree and noticed early signs of fall. I can’t wait for cooler weather and the time to change. Evenings where the sunsets early.


Sometimes we can squeeze in a nap for Olivine (like today) before we pick up Paul.DSC01322

She woke up and lined up her vintage ponies (thanks Jenny)


and the afternoon slows us down a little from a week full of hustle.


We look forward to the weekends. Maybe sleeping in or staying up late. My favorite is just the being together. The five of us after so many days and evenings apart.


We went swimming last Sunday at her house.


The boys just jump in and I have to accept they are part fish.DSC01233

It’s been so warm, we might have to go back.


It cools us off, but also wipes them out. Double win!


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