The Sweet In-Between

Thursday, November 12, 2015

The time between the end of Summer and the first snowfall might just be my favorite.
Everything is golden; Leaves, the light, the sunsets, the sunrises, the trees.
The days are shorter and evening comes so early it's almost painful.
BUT everything is beautiful, you have to look every single day though...Every day and soak it all in.
Every tree, every leaf, every sunset. All of it.
Fall is so short, if you blink you will miss it...Just like that.

When we walk and the leaves are still crunching underneath our feet, when the ground is not yet covered by snow and we are not quite ready to completely hibernate until Spring...
This, right now, is my most favorite time.
So I look out the windows and stare at the trees and notice all the little things that will soon be covered until Spring.
There is still some yellow left... I can still dream of pumpkin pie and apple pie and homemade noodles and make Thankful lists(if only mentally)and take in everything about this season without rushing into the next.


Baby Steps

Monday, November 9, 2015

My morning scene(the end of my morning quiet time, it is dark when I get up). Journal, pen, coffee.

In order for bigger change to occur(eventually) I have decided that I have to start making small changes every single day... One day they will all add up to something bigger...but he beginning always requires baby steps, somewhere to start.

I have started making changes to my morning routine, I am forming new habits sloooowly, in order to replace old ones. I don't think you can wake up one day and decide that everything in your life is wrong and you need to change everything this second in order to be happy and at peace.
Eh...maybe some people can, I don't know...But that would not work for me. It has to be slower and more deliberate or I think you immediately fall back into old routines and habits. You have to look at things and decide what is working and what isn't and WHY. What you can immediately change, what you can start working on and long + short-term goals.

So in the name of Making Lasting Changes and Baby Steps, here is what I am doing in the mornings...
*Waking up at least an hour before the kids.
*Writing first
*Not looking at social media(or email or anything else) until I do some writing
* Setting intentions for the day...What I want today to look like, what I don't want it to look like and how I can best get there.

^ This last small step seems pretty simple and kinda silly... But I think it might make the biggest difference in my days. Planning, thinking, setting intentions and remembering that I decide what today looks like is big for me. Other people and things do not decide the outcome of my days, I do.


Happy Monday, Hope it is a great week for you!

So Long October + Hello, November

Wednesday, November 4, 2015

The month of October flew by.
It was full and busy in terms of what we had going on.
It was good and fun and busy and I think I was taking pictures every single day of the trees and the leaves...I cannot get enough of the Fall trees.
A little bit of October....
Some highlights of my month:

-A night out with ALL my girls. So much fun! Laughing and crying and getting crazy. So good for me.
-Both kids had Birthdays...and Birthday parties; There was a camp-out in the backyard for him and a fancy little pumpkin bar birthday cake for her
-A trip to the cabin where the weather was absolutely perfect
-Celebrating both my mom and dad's Birthdays and hanging out with the cousins
-A fancy steak dinner at TapRoot for Wyatt's birthday
-Halloween and Charlotte's favorite costume ever, just maybe!
-Horse-back riding
-FINALLY a caramel apple!
-S'mores and carving pumpkins
-A little get-away with my much fun!
-The highly anticipated Scooby Doo Legos!

There's more than that...and there's a lot that the pictures do not show, which is sometimes hard to remember when you are looking at a tiny spec of someone elses life and days in these tiny pictures. What I mean is, there have been hard days...down days...days of wanting to throw in the towel, days of realizations and tears and a whole lot more that you can't see in photographs.That goes for everyone, everyone's life and pictures.


We are already Day 4 into November and although I am not quite ready for the Holiday season to begin, I guess I better get with it because I don't really have a choice, huh?
I am trying new things this month- I am trying to be more mindful and intentional in my actions, I am trying to form new habits and break old ones...I am actually trying something new every single day(no matter how tiny) and this month is going to be a challenge...I am sure of that.
Sunday November 1, 2015... A new path. 

I read this last week and it has stuck with me since then.
I love this by Dallas Clayton, I really love pretty much everything by Dallas Clayton, but this just fits how I have been feeling lately.

Get out from your house
From your cave, from your car
From the place you feel safe
From the place that you are.
Get out and go running
Go funning, go wild
Get out from your head
And get growing, dear child. 

Will Brake For Fall

Thursday, October 29, 2015

I am that person driving in front of you that slows down to oooh and ahhhh at all the pretty Fall trees.
No seriously, I am.
Sometimes on my way to work I am slowing down, pulling over, taking pictures because I am convinced I just saw the MOST gorgeous tree ever on Earth...and then I see the next more gorgeous one like, thirty seconds later.
Ha! And then somehow I have turned my quick 5-minute drive to work into a 14-minute drive to work and I almost late. That pretty much sums me up.

{These first two were on my drive to work on Monday...}

Oh, I love the colors- the yellows, oranges, browns and reds.
LOVE the colors, the crisp cooler air, the jean jackets, the boots, the leaves falling from the trees almost like rain when you look out the window. 
I love this in-between time that is Fall and wish that it lasted much, much longer than it does here. 
So, I will stop and take all the pictures whenever I want because I know it will soon be gray, bare, cloudy, cold... and frankly, very depressing. 
Every year I almost forget how much I hate Winter and those dreary days, until we have our chilliest rainy day and then it all comes back to me....and I am ready to run away until April. 

Just two days until Halloween and the craziness of having kids and so much going on(in the span of a week, and in our case, the whole month!)has officially begun.
School plays, Halloween parade at school, treats for school, running around to find all the costume supplies we need, grabbing last-minute pumpkins to carve....
The list goes on.
These days are the bright spot for me though, the part I feel like makes up for everything else.
I remember the excitement of Halloween and the days leading up to it, those are favorite memories of mine as a child and I hope they are for my kids, too.
I love getting to do these things again with them and through them, one of the best parts of being a parent for sure.


I hope you are enjoying this season where you are...
Happy Thursday!

On Dreaming Up New Jobs & New Lives...

Saturday, October 24, 2015

I don't know if I would call this a problem so much, maybe it's an escape, maybe it's just a daydream.
Maybe it's me still trying to figure out who I am and what I want to do with my life.
There's nothing wrong with daydreams, or escaping temporarily and most of all, there is nothing wrong with continuing to always try and figure out who you are and what you want to do with your life.....Right?
{Let's just hope I am still not trying to figure this out in thirty years...}
My sister and I recently saw this house and later when I was editing the picture and getting a little bit better look at it, I started wondering about the house and it's history...
How old was it?
Who built it? 
What does the inside look like?
Who has lived in this house?

And then I thought that the coolest, most fun job ever would just be to explore different cities/places, find cool houses, take pictures of them, knock on the door, ask the owners if you can come inside and nose around while taking pictures and listening to their stories and history of these homes. 
How awesome would that be? 
I need this job, I think. Like....Now. 

I can just imagine what it would be like nosing through all the nooks + crannies, in the attics and the cellars, listening to stories and taking pictures of it all.
My next immediate thought is- I would never really do that, I would die before knocking on a stranger's door, asking them to let me in and look around...How embarrassing. How rude. Nosey. Imposing. 

I hate that that is my first reaction as soon as I think of something that I would LOVE to do. 
Is that just me?
Human nature?
Personality? All of the above?
I kind of hate that part of my personality, although I do think everyone has it in them, just to different degrees and in different amounts. 
I always tell the kids they can do whatever they want, have 5 awesome careers they love- not just one, be who they are, travel, wait to go to college, follow their dreams, don't go to college...Whatever. 
Then I wonder if I have really followed any of my BIG dreams. 
And if not...Is it too late for me?


Those are my Saturday morning thoughts.
These are the things always in my head--- there's a lot there, a lot more than I share here, or anywhere.
I will always be a work in progress and I will ALWAYS be trying to figure it out. 
And I think I am okay with that.

Last Minute Birthday Party

Friday, October 16, 2015

This past Tuesday Charlotte turned nine.
My kid's Birthdays normally really kinda depress me but we have had so much going on lately that there was no time to really feel too bad about it or lament how old I must be by now.
Anyway, we threw together a last minute party for her on Sunday and she invited three friends.
With the kid's Birthdays being just ten day apart, we usually celebrate them together with a family party but this year they wanted their own parties and I was happy to oblige.
Months earlier we saw this the tiny mushroom pinata along with Woodland-themed napkins, plates and garland at Target and snatched them up.

We saw so many cute ideas online and ooohed and ahhhed over all the cute things we saw on Pinterest that we didn't have time for(luckily). Charlotte she definitely wanted to make the acorns above and she wanted a bowl of chocolate covered raisins that she saw someone had labeled "bear poop"... I didn't think it was funny, she did, and I have long since learned to pick my battles.

Just the day before we were at my parent's and my mom came up with that little tiny deer sitting on her cake, it used to sit on a dresser in my bedroom when I was a kid. The little banner that says "Happy" on the cake I made in 5 minutes, using tiny tags, string and chopsticks. We scrounged up found real acorns outside and cut some leaves off of our tree in the backyard for a few jars and we were ready for a party.

One idea that did not come from Pinterest but I thought up all by my big-girl self, was for them to make terrariums to take home.
This was fun and took the place of sending them home with little bags full of candy or junk-and also, they look so cute. They are super easy and not expensive and I love how they all turned out.
Had I planned ahead, I would have been watching for these little things that we used to put in the terrariums on sale at Hobby Lobby, Michael's or wherever. I hate paying full price for things that regularly go on sale but this time I had no choice.
I got the dinosaurs at the dollar store and Wyatt hand over some army men of his own, there were two boys there(Wyatt included and I wanted some fun "Boyish" options, too)so I wanted more than just the mushrooms and deer. The tiny deer were found at Hobby Lobby near the dollhouse accessories and the mushrooms near the floral/garden/fairy garden area.
If you were one to plan ahead, I think after Christmas time you could stock up on deer, little trees, fences, houses, etc. at some seriously bargain prices.
I didn't get ant good pictures of the table- and I know you can see baskets of shoes and all of our every day junk in the background but this is real life. And it's messy and filled with dust, dog hair and baskets of shoes.
The napkins and plates were my favorite, along with the pinata, so sweet.
This little girl had a great time, she loved having her "very own Birthday party" and it was a special little day for her indeed.


It's Friday again and another busy weekend ahead....Hoping for some more beautiful Fall weather like we have had lately here in the Midwest. Fingers crossed.
Have a great weekend!

This Week In Pictures

Sunday, October 4, 2015

A crazy, busy week.
That is what happens when there is something going on most weeknights(at least this week)and in the span of 8 days we have four family Birthdays- Wyatt, my mom, my dad and Charlotte.
Just this weekend we squeezed in- five boys camping out in the backyard Friday night, my niece's homecoming Saturday, a soccer game, and dinner out to celebrate Wyatt's Birthday Saturday night.
The week was lots of running around + Birthday shopping, grocery shopping, soccer practice, a school celebration one afternoon, swimming lessons, present wrapping and a few early mornings of walking before work.
That is just way too much for me if you want the truth- But it's a busy season and all days and weeks are not like this one, thankfully.

One of my favorite things from this past week was deciding at the last minute to drive out to the country with the kids to see the eclipse.
We left at the last minute to be able to drive about 10-15 minutes and get a really good view of it away from a lot of lights/town...We made it.
We were already in our pajamas and all I really wanted to do was get in bed and read my book- But I am glad we went. Such a cool thing to see and I hope the kids remember these things when they are older, these simple, last minute things, the memories we are making and just spending time together.

In the midst of all the chaos I try to constantly remember to slow down, take a breath and appreciate where I am right now in the moment. Just breathe.
A lot of time it's not easy and it takes effort to push things out of my mind-the worry, the thoughts, anxieties and ugly stuff. A great reminder for me is taking pictures... Every single day.
Even if right now the pictures are just with my phone, it is a great way for me to appreciate the little things, to capture them and to remember what is really important to me amidst all the craziness and stress of daily life.

Happy Sunday!