Friday, April 17, 2015


That's what your big sister calls you.
And sometimes she calls you Cruuusby.
And sometimes she says you're so cute she could squeeze your guts out.  I don't think she means it.
But you really are so cute.

Especially when you shriek so loud you make yourself cough…..and then do it again because you think it's hilarious.

Especially when you sneeze and you get the biggest smile on your face.  And really….who doesn't think sneezing feels good?

Especially when you laugh whenever we say "Hola, Hola, Coca-Cola."  (Who knows where that came from.)

Especially when you beat your chest like Tarzan.

Especially when you hold your own bottle….and you're only five months old!

Especially when you sleep through the night….oh wait.  But I'm sure you'll be cute when you do.  Maybe even cuter than you are now.

Especially when you wear hats.  You were made for hats.  You're a hat boy.  And really….I have a thing for boys in hats….so no wonder.  Whoever made that rule that guys have to take their hats off when they're at the table or indoors in general?  Stupid rule.  I'll let you break it.

Especially when you do that lazy smile thing you do.  Killer.

Especially when you look at me and I know that you're the perfect finishing touch to our family.  My biggest-surprise-in-the-world-boy.  My I-don't-know-if-we're-ready-boy.  My-but-we-had-no-warning-boy.

But really….just my boy.  Who is the perfect little brother to my girl.

Happy weekending everyone.
It's supposed to finally feel like spring here in Michigan.
I'll drink to that.  A diet coke anyway.

Tuesday, March 31, 2015

This & That 2.0

I kind of liked putting all those links together a few weeks ago, so I thought……it's happening again....and probably again too.

Here we go….

Easter is Sunday. Georgia loves bunnies.  I love British accents. Win/Win.

My sister got this for me for Christmas in rose gold.  I love it.  Wear it almost everyday.  There's probably someone in your life (like yourself) who would love one too.

The word 'busy.' It can be annoying.

I've been trying to find time to read this book.  It's been sitting next to my bed for a month.  Ironic. Have you read it?  Is it good?  I can't decide if I'll like it or find it annoying.  The phrase "making time for you," rubs me the wrong way.  We'll see.

This is really important information for all of us moms to have.

I wish Serial had been about fifty episodes long.  This tells Ms. Koenig which cases she should explore next….the last one sounds particularly creepy.

I feel like I'd wear these everyday if it ever. stopped.

So helpful. Now if only I could master not making a pound of pasta every time I make spaghetti.

Are these creepy or cool?  I can't decide.  But I'm sure your kids will think they're funny.

Loved this post about being a stay-at-home parent for lots and lots of reasons....none that any of you would find all that interesting.

'Baby Jesus Awesome' is how one reviewer described this item.  Read the rest of the reviews. 

I'm not one to say "I'll never wear...( insert any up and coming fashion fad that's making a comeback)," because the Birkenstocks in my closet that I bought last summer know I'm usually game for pretty much anything fashion related.  I love this one--I just don't know if I can pull it off anymore at 37 like I could at 18.  Makes me a little sad. 

I bought this dress to wear for Easter--it's 1/2 off.  It's amazing. Seriously.  I almost don't believe it's not real leather and the color in person is perfection (which is strange because it's mauve) and I will wear this and wear this and wear this and bonus, it's crazy comfortable and I can just wipe baby spit up right off of it.

This little video is pretty cute.  My mom can't stand the guy--he's grown on me through the years.  Something so friendly about him.

In other news…….

I'm going to be selling a batch of Georgia's clothes that don't fit her anymore in an Instagram sale later on this week (as in tomorrow).  Follow @shopthepeach and I'll approve you when the sale launches.  These amazing little shoes--that she never wore--will be part of the sale.

And this adorable baby, named Crosby, who is mine, that I love and kiss about a bajillion times a day is eating baby food now and I love the baby food stage.  Currently he's digging sweet potatoes.  Today we're going to venture into green bean territory.

Happy Tuesday to you!

Sunday, March 29, 2015

Six year old recap….

A little late on the six year old birthday party recap.  But…..we've been busy-ish around here in all good ways and just working on other stuff here and there even though I always want to make sure I capture these memories in this space.

The new Cinderella movie came out at the perfect time and Georgia decided she wanted to take a group of her classmates to the movie and out for frozen yogurt.  I was game for that since it was minimal planning and offered built in entertainment.

It also provided me at least fifteen trips to the bathroom during the course of the movie as inevitably each little girl had to use the restroom at different times and never when a friend was going (thank goodness my mom was with us so we could tag team who stayed in the theater and who visited the facilities).  So, Cinderella seemed pretty good.  I'll need to watch it again at a later date to fill in the holes.

It was a fun afternoon and I always love the chance to hang out with Georgia's friends a little more.  She's met such an amazing group of girls this year at kindergarten and it's so interesting to hear the stories each day after school about how fantastic each one of them is, how beautiful so and so's dress was, what she had for lunch, how she's so good at making up games at recess, and how funny that girl is.

Later that night we had the family over…..and lo and behold……I might have won mom-of-the-year (at least this year) for our gift…..

G's cute twin cousins and a Cinderella cake made by Grandma Cathy. 

And then…..the mermaid tail.  It will for sure result in a broken ankle or something….but G's face upon opening it…..pretty spectacular.

And lest you think this is just a water toy and 'where are we going to be in water this time of year outside of our bathtub?' fear not….this gets worn while laying around the living room, in the shower, while sliding down the steps, while lounging on the kitchen floor, while practicing piano (beginner players don't have to use the pedals--thankfully), sometimes to bed, and anywhere else Georgia can talk me into it.  

Oh look….a mermaid on the rock in our front yard.  Magical. 

Oh look….that fin almost took one of Tarah's eyes out.  She's graduating from college soon and I think a mermaid tail just might be in her future.

Happy birthday you amazing six year old!  It's mind-blowing to Chris and I that we are here, with a six year old, who amazes the heck out of us everyday.  Who's exploding with new skills and observations and thoughts everyday.

She's our favorite girl in all the world and she makes our family our favorite place to be.

Tuesday, March 3, 2015

Uncommon Goods = Uncommon Gifts

This post is sponsored by Uncommon Goods but all opinions are my own.  

The month of March for us kicks off almost four months of one gift-giving event after another.  We've got at least three birthdays in March, then comes Easter basket season (and I'm always game for two or three cute, creative gifts for Easter baskets and not just candy), my moms birthday, Mother's Day, more birthdays, inevitably a few babies born, and then Father's Day book-ends this season of gifting.  I feel like I hit a wall around mid April and my creative juices run dry in terms of what to get for the next gift that makes me excited about giving it.

Except--there's this great company called Uncommon Goods that provides just that….'uncommon' gifts that you can't find just anywhere and that will make just about anybody happy to unwrap what you've given them! And they make it pretty easy to narrow down what you're looking for with their pre-made gifts lists like birthday ideas categorized by gender and age or personalized gifts or gifts by price and on and on.

Additionally, I really love the idea of supporting stores that give back in some way, make the world a little better, and work hard to be sustainable in a variety of ways without sacrificing creativity, trendiness, or aesthetic appeal.  So the cool thing about Uncommon Goods is that they let you choose which nonprofit organization, out of four that they support, you'd like them to donate a $1 to for every purchase you make.  I love that!  Everyone will feel a tug in a bit of a different direction when it comes to supporting a cause and I think it's fantastic that they give some autonomy to their customer in that regard.

So, in preparation for all the gifts I have to purchase coming up I've highlighted a few of my favorites…..and by 'my' favorites, I mean I like them as much for me as I do other people.

This personalized gold birch cuff is amazing!  I love that little heart detail.  Perfect for Mother's Day this year!

Also fantastic in the personalized gift category is this book about becoming a big sister.  (They have a big brother one too.) I know a little girl who qualifies as a super big sister that would like this book.

These earrings look like they could easily become an everyday staple piece. They're small, go with anything, and just unique enough that you won't get sick of wearing them six out of seven days of the week.

So, I know…kind of strange to give someone a stuffed heart as a present but here's the thing…Georgia is obsessed with the human body as a result of science class this year so I love the educational value of this toy and I think a heart would be a cute present for someone you love, and where are you going to find something like this other than at Uncommon Goods?

With patio season soon to be upon us a set of cool new drink glasses would be a great gift for someone and these mixed tape glasses that you can write peoples names on with a grease pencil (included) are so fun.

So My Story Begins….I actually own this onesie for Crosby and I can't think of a better new-babygift.

This USA map that you can rub off state by state with a coin as you visit each one is so perfect for kids and adults!  Georgia would think this was fantastic.  She makes me proud that she loves geography so much.  She must have a former history teacher as a mom or something.

These coasters are just beautiful.  Mother's Day?  I think so.

Another great baby gift, or first birthday present….these foreign language blocks come in Spanish or Mandarin and teach kids some basic vocabulary and are pretty and would make your nursery look super intelligent when strewn across the floor.

And that's just nine ideas from Uncommon Goods!  Their site is bursting with more amazingness.  So, the next time you have gifting-block check them out.  I bet you'll find the perfect thing!

Friday, February 27, 2015

This & That.

Merry Friday from this little guy who has found his voice and loves it so much he thought we should all hear his shrieks and conversations from 3-5 a.m. this morning.  Good thing he's the cutest boy in all the land.  At least my land.  

Some good stuff to click on this weekend if you're interested…..

This weird article on Scary Mommy is kind of about adoption. Kind of not.  Just…..weird.  Love to know your thoughts.

I harbor some love for Russell Brand as fantastically strange as he is.  And he trails off a bit at the end, and I can't tell if he's wearing any clothes....but….mostly….pretty good words here.  And sure we could dissect parts of what he says and who he is, but don't lose sight of the main point.

J.Crew can always make normally ugly things look amazing like these and Target can always knock off J. Crew with 200% accuracy and a fraction of the price.

This made the rounds last week and I say 'no-way' was this not staged.  No.Way.

Georgia would give her left arm if I bought her one of these for her birthday.  It's the most sustained gift idea she's ever begged for….we're going on about a year now and I just think…….this looks like a fall down the stairs and a trip to the ER.  Talk me into it if you must.

I really liked Sheryl Sandberg's Lean In, but I also really like this article and perspective on "Leaning In" from Jessica Williams.  It's freeing.  The last paragraph is the best.  Just read that if you can't get past the title.

Chris and I joined The Blacklist party late…..I know.  But….the music on the show?  Why doesn't anyone ever talk about how amazing it is...or do they and I'm oblivious?  I watch every show with Sound Hound open.  This song, this one, and this one can't be played loud enough.

Here's a cute little DIY from one of my favs.

I pre-ordered this book this week because Shauna could write ingredient labels and they'd be riveting and poignant and clever.

I need to make these soon.

Wheeeeeeeeeen will it be hot? In about four months.

Please tell me you read these weekly?  No?  You should.

I've fallen in love with Zara all over again since Crosby was born because their designers were clearly in the top of their class when it came to making little boys clothes....and women's clothes.....and little girl clothes too....and probably something for your man as well. 

Looking for an excuse to buy this bag....but I don't have one...maybe you do.

Happy weekend!  It's March on's to coming in like a lion!

And P.S. for the record….the dress is cream and gold.

Wednesday, February 25, 2015

Fanny's Dream. And Passion. And Happiness. And Just Being Happy….Where You Are.

That's a good long title that I'm sure will do well in terms of SEO.  But I'm sticking with it.

Georgia brought home a book from library day at school this week called Fanny's Dream by Caralyn Buehner.  We read it together and it was clear from the get-go that it was an adaptation of Cinderella.  Farm girl who wants to be a princess hears the mayor is going to throw a ball so she waits, and waits, and waits and waits for her fairy god-mother to come and transform her into a vision so she can race down the hill to the ball.  But she never comes.

Instead, Heber comes.  (Super attractive boy name if you're in the market by the way.) And Heber tells her that he's no prince (we know--your name is Heber) but he can give her a good life and they'll be a great pair and he lists all the ways she'll be taken care of; chivalrous ways to be sure…..not necessarily living in a castle kind of ways however.  She thinks about it for an hour. Mind you, this is about 58 minutes longer than the real Cinderella considers marrying Prince Charming--so Fanny really gives it a lot of consideration and weighs out the pros and cons. In the end, she decides to choose Heber because the fairy god-mother is for sure a no-show at this point.

The book then chronicles Fanny & Heber's life for the next few years; a nice little house, they make each other laugh, they have cozy nights at home, they have three great kids, and on and on.  And finally…..finally…….six or seven years in……..the fairy god-mother shows up and tells Fanny that now she'll change her into a princess and she can marry the prince because the mayor is throwing another ball.


Fanny looks over her shoulder, back at her quaint little house where she knows her husband is reading to their three kids and she thinks about her life and she tells the fairy god-mother, "No thanks."  And my favorite part--the last line of the book--when she walks back into her house and Heber asks her who she was talking to outside she says, "My fairy-godmother Hebie."  And he replies, "Yeah, and I'm the Prince of Sahiba."

And she smiles at him and says, "Close enough. Close enough." 

And my gut reaction at the end of the book was, "Awesome--Debbie Downer."
But then I kept thinking about it and it struck me….why did I think that was a downer of a book?  Wasn't it realistic?  In a good way?

Fanny learned one of the most important lessons there is to learn.  A lesson that I don't think a lot of young people (and I include myself in that category) are learning today; in an era that speaks Pinterest quotes and self-help books that spout 'you better get every last thing you want and desire and dream about and feel passion about…..or life isn't worth living' crap.

I think the ability to choose happiness, to learn happiness, to be realistic about happiness is waning, dwindling, and being eclipsed by PASSION.  And this eclipse is changing our definition of happiness…..and not in a good way.

I am so weary of people talking about finding their passion.  Finding what they're passionate about it and doing it. Only doing it if it's their passion.  Leaving others in the dust if they can't get on board with their passion.  Realizing that where you are right now in life isn't really your passion--so go ahead and abandon everything you're currently doing… find your passion.

The word passion feels about as stagnant to me as describing something as "epic."

Just. Stop.

And also…..I fear there's a whole lot of me, me, me wrapped up in finding all of our passions.

Don't get me wrong.  I think it's great to find something you love, something that lights your fire, something that motivates you to do more……..but as a society I believe we're putting a lot of our eggs, maybe all of our eggs, into the passion basket.

When I see memes like this………

all over Pinterest I wonder what "happy" really means?  Because there's no way I believe that you shouldn't do something unless it makes you happy; assuming we're talking about the most used definition of the word happy.  

I wasn't real happy while I was going through five years of infertility treatments.  But I did it anyway.  Because we wanted to try and figure out what was keeping us from getting pregnant.  Nothing. That's what.  No answers.  So……..a lot of happiness in that. 

But we did it.  And ten years later, I suppose I'm "happy" we went through it because the end of that twisty road led us to Georgia and eventually Crosby.  However, if someone could have told me after year one of Clomid shots and one IUI after another that it wasn't in the cards for us to get pregnant and we should just stop right now and pursue adoption and had I really been in the right frame of mind to hear that advice and act on it, I probably would have been much happier along the way. 

We kept at it though even when we weren't happy.  Even when it really blew….we kept at it.  I guess I'm glad meaningless Pinterest quotes weren't so prevalent ten years ago.  

And Fanny?  I believe that at the end of the book she was happy.  Really happy.  It might not have been what she'd dreamed of all those years ago and it might have been a lot of hard work, being a farmers wife……because life is hard work, but she realized while she was waiting for her fairy god-mother that it's pretty unrealistic to depend on someone else (or something else) to come along and bestow happiness upon you.  It's really a mind-set, a choice, a daily decision, something you have to work at, and something that might just creep up and surprise you one day because you've put so much effort into getting there, even when it hurt…..even when it meant giving up something you thought you really wanted.  

So really… things that you love, that you feel passionate about, that make you act like a better person. But, not at the expense of others, not because you don't feel 'happy' right this minute, and not because you think something or someone will solve something hard for you that you don't feel like putting the effort into yourself.   There are no reliable fairy-godmothers.  Fanny knew that; hers was seven years late.  

We know that.  
We have to acknowledge that.

And when we do, we might find that what we originally thought was going to make us happy wasn't really it.  

Totally unrelated picture other than we're happy.  

Thursday, February 19, 2015

Great Kid Birthday Gift Ideas

With Georgia being in kindergarten we've been getting a lot of birthday party invites lately!  And sometimes, I scratch my head a little over what to get.  I realize that some of the items here wouldn't qualify, price wise, as a gift for a classmate…..but we've all got other kids we buy gifts for too…..some of them in our family….and a good idea….is a good idea!

1.  Lush…..Fun.  This stuff is………fun.  It's like play-doh soap for a kids bath.  You can get it in a variety of colors and it also turns their bathwater a great color.  It smells good, is all natural, supports a great cause (proceeds help to build play grounds in under privileged areas), and can be used as soap or shampoo.  Plus, it's only $6. Add a cool bath poof and you've got yourself a unique present.  

2.  Little Passports.  This is a subscription service and it's one of the best I've tried.  We've been doing it for over a year now and every month a creative envelope from a different country arrives with age appropriate information, a souvenir, a post card, and some stickers for your child's "passport."  We hung a huge world map (provided for you) on the wall of G's play room and tape new information to it every month.  You can order a month-to-month subscription, a six month subscription, or a year long subscription for someone.  She is pumped every month when a new envelope arrives.  The luster definitely hasn't worn off. 

3.  Sew Cool Sewing Machine. We got this for Georgia for Christmas and it one of the most played with toys we've ever gotten her.  There is no thread, no exposed needles, and kids her age (five and up) can manage this all on their own and sew little pillows and other creations just like that.  It surges two pieces of felt together when you run them through the machine and it's so fun to watch kids get so excited about something they've made all on their own.  The little kits that are sold separately to make even more stuff are also super cool!

4.  Rody. Georgia got a Rody horse when she was 18 months old and she still plays with it.  She dresses it (funny), uses it as a pillow while watching movies (odd), jumps it all over the yard in the summer (expected), jumps it all over the house in the winter (a test of my patience), and even has slept with him in her bed (because kids can pile the strangest crap in their beds).  I think a toy that has stood the test of time for over four years is a good bargain. 

5.  Play Teepee. So, not the cheapest gift--maybe one to go in on with someone else…or you can always find a cheaper one somewhere else…like Etsy.  But the play value in these is spot on.  Plus--they are so easy to move.  We bring ours out to the yard for picnics in the summer, to the basement, it's always up in the playroom and it's a variety of things during almost every game Georgia plays, and she's brought it to the living room once or twice to watch a movie in.  

6.  Puppet Show. This becomes so much more than a puppet show stage.  It's great for magic shows, singing shows, a curtain for a stage act, a backdrop for play, and obviously something to hide behind.  

7.  Cootie. Loved this game as a kid and I feel like I hardly ever see it anymore in the game closet at most houses.  I think games for kids that teach concentration, sequencing, and motor skills are great gifts!

8.  Brightlab Lights. These are so beautiful and are just big cotton ball lights!  And you can create your own custom colored strand if you'd like or purchase one of their pre-made color combinations.  And while I think these would be a creative addition to any kids room, I wouldn't stop there.  
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