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All the Fall Things

While it certainly still felt like summer this weekend, we jumped in to all things Fall. On Saturday we hosted a barbecue with some of my closest friends and it was glorious. So glorious, in fact, that I didn’t take any pictures except one of these cutie girlfriends because I was too busy laughing my buns off and stuffing my face.

And on Sunday we undertook the most basic of fall activities: Apple picking. We have an annual tradition of going with a group of friends, and as has been the trend for our last several years, it was HOT HOT HOT outside. But it was so sweet seeing E and her little friend get excited about riding the tractor and pulling apples out of the trees (and occasionally off the ground 🤢).

(Anyone else as surprised as I am that my tiny human is wearing activity-appropriate clothing AND a ponytail?!)

This was such a great weekend, and really got me thinking about the friends we spent it with, among others. Both of these plans have literally been in our calendar for over 2 months. Our annual apple picking is actually a standing yearly plan for the same weekend in September. And I actually felt kind of ridiculous sending out a sort of “save the date” for a casual barbecue of all things in July. But schedules get so crazy busy between work obligations, family obligations, traveling, etc. and it’s so easy to fall into a trap of complacency. It’s not like in high school or college when you took for granted that your friends were just around.

Now it usually takes being really intentional, getting dates on the calendar for get-togethers sometimes months and months in advance. And that’s okay because life happens and life is busy. But this weekend was a reminder to me how fulfilling it is to make that extra effort, to reach out to friends, and figure out how to make time for each other.. because it’s really good for the soul to sit with old friends until 2:30am crying laughing and playing What Do You Meme.

Thanks for reading and Happy Monday, everyone! xo

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Tiny Dancer

Yesterday was a historic day in our little family. Emmy had her first dance class 😭😍. I was so excited to buy her little tap shoes and ballet slippers, leotards, and tights. Everyone I talked to said “She’s going to love it!” And I’d laugh and say “Or she’s absolutely going to hate it. There will be no in between.”

I was really excited for her to be at an age where she can start doing things without me– non mommy and me activities. I also think it’ll be good for her to transition into separating from me before she starts school next year.

I wasn’t actually anticipating yesterday being very hard on me– I was THRILLED at the prospect of not having to crawl all over the floor or chase after her for an hour (I have a love/hate relationship with mommy and me classes). But I was actually surprisingly anxious in the moment. Anxious that she is in a class of older girls because her 2-3yr old class was canceled, anxious that she wouldn’t be a good listener, anxious that she’d throw a tantrum, anxious that older kids wouldn’t be nice to her… just anxious. About everything.

All in all, it went ok. She did well for the first 30 minutes (especially when the teacher played Let It Go and I could hear her scream-singing in the waiting room), and she was a bit more.. difficult the last 30 (screaming crying refusing to take off her tap shoes even though she wouldn’t participate in tap whatsoever) I’d like to think that she will get better after a few classes, she’ll acclimate and adjust.

And ironically, she and I are mirror images. I’d like to think that in a few weeks I, too, will get better, I’ll acclimate and adjust.

(Of course all my pictures are blurry because this kid doesn’t stop moving)

Have a great day, friends! xo

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Functional Little Spaces pt2

Last week I shared an organizational center in my kitchen on dead wall space. Today, I’m showing a little part of our entry way.

Our entry way is a little tough because it’s narrow, but I really wanted to spruce it up with some decor and functional design. In our apartment we didn’t have a coat closet, so we used this awesome shoe bin from Ikea to organize the shoes we wear on a daily basis. What’s great about it is how narrow it is, and yet each bin holds several pairs of shoes! (In our apartment it fit behind our front door and didn’t impinge on its opening).

I also love the chalkboard there so I can practice my chalk writing and change up what it says!

I’m still looking for some fun fall pieces for the top of the shoe organizer, but here’s what I have so far!

Happy Monday! xo

Uncategorized

Functional Little Spaces

One of the things I was most excited about with the new house was having a larger kitchen. In our apartment, we had a small galley kitchen with hardly any counter space. Well, we quickly got into a bad habit of dumping mail, papers, random crap on my long-awaited countertops– and it drove me bonkers.

Our kitchen also had this sort of dead wall space on the side of the pantry/hall leading to the kitchen, so I decided to try to use that unused space to solve our crap-collecting problem on the counters (see below).

I kind of hate the term “kitchen command center” but I guess that’s technically what I created in this space. As usual, Tarjay had exactly what I was envisioning– decorative, but ultimately functional “storage” for mail and papers in a space that was otherwise serving no purpose.

I’ve been having fun creating little spaces like this one through the house– can’t wait to share more of them!

Happy Friday! xo

motherhood

Lessons I’ve Learned From My Toddler vol. 2

When Emmy was really little I used to imagine what her little voice would sound like. I would imagine her saying things like “I love you mommy” and “thank you mommy” (😂🙄) Well, as you can imagine, what I get most these days is “No mommy” and usually at a pitch only the dog can hear. Emmy has become extremely particular in what she’s willing to wear. I basically have an entire summer wardrobe that she’s refused to wear because 9 times out of 10 the ONLY thing I can get her to leave the house wearing is a Disney princess costume.

It has gotten SO frustrating being short on time, trying to get out the door, begging her, pleading with her to just let me put clothes on her to go run errands, make it to an appointment, a playdate, whatever it may be. She puts one of the gowns on and immediately says “Oh mommy so beautiful” and talks about how fancy the dress is.

I’ve spent a good deal of time fighting this, arguing with her, etc. But then I got to thinking… why? Why should I tell her she can’t feel so beautiful on a casual Tuesday going to the eye doctor? (Actual scenario below)

There are a few lessons here for me. First, basically everywhere we go when she’s dressed like this people look at us. Some give knowing little grins, some just stare, some judge… who cares? Why should I care what some strangers at the mall think that she’s in a Tinker Bell costume and a Princess Poppy winter hat in the middle of August? And really, why should I care, in general, about what people think of me? Honestly, that was the biggest reason I didn’t start a blog 3 years ago. Like WHAT?! I’m 30 years old! Why should my concern about what others think about what I have to say stop me from doing something I think will be fun? The short answer is: I shouldn’t.

Along those same lines, Emmy is so confident when she wears these things that I think are ridiculous. She literally has no concept of people looking at her funny. None. She feels amazing. End of story. Why as adults do we complicate that idea so much? When along the line does this change for us? I admire this confidence in her; I should be trying to emulate it. And as trying as these times can be, I also hope so deeply for her that this part of her never changes.

And so, friends, you do you and feel fabulous doing it. xo

Home decor

Fall Touches

Happy September! Friends, I am SO excited to decorate for fall, and now that it’s after Labor Day I feel like I can officially jump in with both feet. We had some family over for a bbq yesterday, so I used that as an excuse to start adding some fall touches (even though it’s still a gajillion degrees outside).

Today I’m on the hunt for more fall pieces because I have so much more room to decorate! Here’s a taste of my fall decor so far!

When we were picking paint colors and furniture, I intentionally picked a lot of warm neutrals so that I always had a canvas for seasonal decorating. I LOVE a good garland– either regular greens (my favorite being a eucalyptus garland from Hobby Lobby as seen on my mantel), a fully seasonal garland, or sprucing a simple one up with some seasonal bunches.

I can’t wait to share what else I find! Have a great day! xo

motherhood

Expecting the Meltdown

We are fresh off our family summer vacation, still trying to bask in our relaxation (maybe that’s why we haven’t unpacked? I KNOW… we’re *those* people who don’t unpack suitcases for like 2 weeks). Anywho, we really, truly had a fantastic week. I was a little anxious leading up to the trip because… 2 year old. Last year was a tough trip.. 17 months old, love/hate relationship with the beach, fearless, -5% listening skills. But what a difference a year made. Still fearless (thank you Jesus she willingly kept her puddle jumper on) and approximately 12% listening skills, but this girl LOVED the pool and loved the beach. She was mildly obnoxious on the plane, singing Let It Go at the actual top of her lungs, but all in all, that could have been worse.

I think a huge part of this trip was managing my own expectations, being realistic that it’s not *if* things don’t always go as planned, it’s *when* things don’t go as planned. It would have been really easy for me to be super annoyed that the ONE night we took E out to dinner with the whole family, she refused to sit and eat and we had to take turns walking the block with her, alternating eating cold dinners and drinking warm beers. Because that is annoying. BUT I also know that’s par for the course with her. No amount of bribery with coloring, stickers, toys, or the iPad has ever made this kid sit in a high chair (or regular chair for that matter) at a restaurant. I would be delusional to expect that this one time she would actually do that, especially with all the excitement of vacation added in. Instead, we rolled with it; Stephen being an all-star/pushover and walking her to get ice cream while we all finished eating (because he inhales food… it’s actually extraordinary how fast he eats).

And really I think that’s the name of the game when it comes to kids– knowing your kids and setting your expectations accordingly. It’s not always something I do well (ie going to Target and expecting to make it out of there without buying 2 pink cake pops, running to the mall “real quick” and being less than thrilled to have to ride the escalator back and forth 47 times in a row). But it is something I’m trying really hard to live by… because otherwise you’ll find clumps of my hair strewn through Target.

(P.s– WHY IS IT ALWAYS TARGET?.. a post for another time)

Thanks for reading! xo