Jumping into Summer!

We spent our first week of summer in the Ozarks and my kids went hard. The week was a blur because they crammed in as much as possible into every day. There was a lot of swimming, paddle boarding, a lazy river, a ropes course, and the last day we went out on the boat. We spent two hours swimming or tubing and I liked how everyone had a different style jumping in.

Charlie would just run off the side, ready to go. Chris took giant dives in. Harper kind of walked/hopped off.

We had so much fun this week and are fully embracing this fun age the twins are. Big enough to decide for themselves what they want to do, small enough that they want us to do it with them. I hope this summer is different than last in a lot of ways, here’s to adventures both big and small!

And in case you’re wondering, Sam’s preferred method is to be handed into the water, given a snack, and float around on dad while he watches the action go down.

First snow of the season!

Colorado got its first snow this week- and up here in the mountains, it was a real one!

Here’s the view of my backyard this morning. And here’s Sam in his fleecy footie pjs enjoying the sight from inside the house. He’s content to just watch, the twins I had to drag inside at dark!

Friday

Yesterday I woke up thinking, “Yay it’s Friday!” only to quickly remember that, nope, it’s Thursday.  But today! Today is Friday! And this time next week I can say that we survived  distance learning! I’m trying to be optimistic about what fall and school will look like, but you know what? Right now I have summer to look forward to. And while our plans may have to be very flexible, and this definitely won’t look like past summers, I’m still excited to have the free time, the extra daylight, and the room for play.

This week we let our butterflies go that we got around Easter. Even as an adult it’s still a miracle every time to watch those caterpillars get fat, make a chrysalis, and then, like magic!, emerge as this beautiful, delicate butterfly. I went on a walk yesterday and there were butterflies everywhere and I told the kids I was pretty sure some of them were ours. There’s probably a beautiful metaphor in there somewhere, but for now it was simply a reminder that nature and all her mysteries are bigger than we can imagine and still happening all around us.

This weekend we are getting ready to celebrate the twins’ ninth birthday. I’ve ordered way too many presents and we have some projects we would like to get done around the house. I’m sure there’s a hike or two that will happen and movies and popcorn will absolutely be in the mix.

Fridays are weird now because nothing much changes from the rest of the week, but we’ve been trying really hard to mark a distinction and to make our weekends about family time and rest. I hope yours is full of both of those good things and that you get time to stop and marvel at a butterfly or two!

Gray and Gloomy Monday

Woke up this morning to a very gray and gloomy day, which feels especially rough after yesterday was so gorgeous. I had a blog post planned and then… kind of forgot to write it? ha! So here we are with a few random thoughts that are on my mind this morning.

This weekend I was thinking I might start sharing weekly meal plans here. My family and friends are tired of hearing me talk about food, but it’s something that takes up a big part of my energy these days. I was thinking with meat most likely getting more scarce this summer, that I may share some family friendly recipes that focus on plants and seasonal produce. I may start next week.

I was reading about restaurants this weekend that completely disregarded our state’s reopening guidelines and looking at the pictures of people packed inside together, with no masks of course, acting like everything is fine and normal made me so upset. I’m worried  for what these next few months are going to look like and admit I’m feeling a little discouraged by humanity right now.

Same goes for all the people on the trail yesterday with no masks, or possibly worse, people with masks just hanging around their necks. Besides these people, our hike was great. We went to Three Sisters Park and hiked the sisters loop, which was gorgeous and ended up being about 3 miles. I was proud of the twins for keeping up and keeping good attitudes!

Next week is the twins’ birthday and Chris and I went on a buying spree last week and packages keep appearing at the house. I hope we can make the day special and fun, even during these weird times.

I hope all of you stay well and find some sunshine today!

Happy Mother’s Day

I love the movie and the stage musical Billy Elliott and one of my favorite lines is when the ballet teacher says- wow Billy, your mom sounds like she was pretty special (or something like that) and Billy says (with all the love in the world)- no, she was just me mum.

Your mom could cure all the world’s diseases, she could win an Oscar, she could write best selling novels, but at the end of the day you love her because she’s just your mum. I know not everyone has a mom that they feel that way about and Mother’s Day may be a tricky day for you, but I hope if you’re a mom and feel like there’s no way you can measure up to this idea in your head, please know that to your kids you are everything. And if you’re doing your job right, you love them so completely and fully that they don’t know anything else. You’re just their mum.

This is me and my mum (and Sam!). If I’m any good at my job at mothering three children it’s because I had her as a role model. Yes she’s a doctor, possibly the smartest woman I know, and a fierce defender of justice, but at the end of the day?

She’s just me mum.

Another Friday is Here

We made it to another Friday! Not that that seems to mean anything for those of us isolated at home, but a weekend is still a weekend, even if it just means we change into weekend pajamas instead of week day pajamas.

We’ve been getting along ok over here, some days emotions are high and there are tears (from everyone) and some days we are all in a little groove, working hard and having fun. It just depends and I’m sure all of you are feeling the same way.

My love list today is the stuff that’s getting me through, the things I’m looking forward to or that are helping me most on those days that don’t feel so great.

Bubble baths. Our bathroom has a great bathtub and a couple of times a week I soak in it with a face mask, a glass of wine, and either a book or my iPad and I don’t come out until I feel rested. It’s bliss.

Long Walks and Happy Hours. Chris and I set a time each time when he will be done and when that time hits we either go on a long walk or hit the patio for a little happy hour. Sometimes we do both! It’s a nice way to break the day before we get to parenting duties and it’s been a time to connect and talk to one another about something other than the daily tasks of keeping everyone alive.

Sewing. I’ve been sewing a ton over here. I’ve taken over the dining room and have just been hopping from project to project. I usually work in the afternoon when the kids are done with their main lessons for the day and don’t need much help from me. Sam is napping and I take the time for myself.

TV shows. Chris and I have always watched tv together but during this lockdown we’ve been very into watching one show at a time. We finished Deadwood (loved it), finished Shitt’s Creek (adored), and now we’re finishing the Americans. Something we used to watch but somehow missed the last season of. We don’t watch tv during the day and it feels like a treat to look forward to in the evenings. Especially when there’s no real bedtime anymore.

Hello Fresh. Listen, people in this house eat non stop and I lost the joy of cooking and meal prep real early on during this whole thing. However, my Hello Fresh subscription is keeping me sane. 4 nights a week I have a meal planned, everything I need for it, and step by step instructions that I can follow even at my most tired.

Signs of Spring. Spring is coming to Colorado and I’m loving seeing signs of it. Seeing green shoots and cactus flowers pop up is enough to lift my spirits on the lowest of days. Also I’m having fun watching what’s coming up in my flowerbeds and have bought some seeds to start inside this week and see if I can grow a garden this year.

These are the good things keeping me going, along with family and friends facetimes, happy mail, and lots of snuggles with my favorite people in the world. What’s on your love list?

home.

Was January the longest month ever or was January the longest month ever? Now we are into February and I’m happy to say that our new house is feeling like a home. The movers took longer than expected to get here and when they did I went into full on workhorse mode, getting everything unpacked and arranged like we wanted it.

Fast forward 3 weeks and we are settling into life here in the mountains. This picture is taken just down the road from our house on a beautiful trail system that we’ve been exploring every weekend. Chris likes to run it and the kids and I like to hike it.

The other night, Chris and I went out alone and he went one way, running, and I went the other way, walking and finishing up a good audio book. It took me a long time to meet up with him on the loop because I kept stopping to take pictures. The light in the mountains is just different and watching the sky change as the sun got lower and lower was a sacred experience.

Life is not all beautiful skies and mountains peaks, of course there has been a big transition for everyone and moving to a new place is hard in a lot of differnet ways. But I’m very proud of us all as a family and after a week of everyone being sick it feels like we are now settling in and trying to find ways to connect to our community.

Our family motto this year is “We have everything we need” (courtesy of the newest Star Wars movie!) and we’ve been embracing this and each other with every new day we get to see here in Colorado!

I hope this coming month brings you lots of the good stuff you love!

A Little Update for the New Year

I hope your 2020 is off to a great start! I got to spend my first day of the new decade surrounded by some of my favorite people and it was delightful. I wanted to share a few updates and plans that I have for the rest of the year.

Life 

As far as life goes, we are still in the process of moving into our new home in Colorado. The movers are taking longer than promised and we’ve had to be a little flexible with our planning. We may be camping out for a few days in the house or we may just get a hotel, we haven’t decided yet! Either way, Chris and I are ready to start the process of getting settled and trying to be patient during the process.

Work

I have set myself some professional goals for the year and this blog is a part of that. I am hoping to post every week day and to stay inspired and engaged, I’ve mapped out topics I want to explore. I’ve decided that every post will be based on a weekly topic and my hope is that it keeps the content here feeling fresh and inspiring, both for me and for you! It’s also my hope that it keeps me in the habit of writing and working on my novel.

I have a few other goals too, but these feel like the starting points to bigger things.

Creative

I will have an office in our new house and I am so excited about this! For the past few years I’ve had to carve out a creative space in the middle of our living areas and it just hasn’t been the best solution. I am looking forward to a few different creative projects that are more about enjoying the process instead of output. I can’t wait to get that room set up and start on my winter sewing collection plans. My big goal for the next few months is to make a coat!

I appreciate every view, comment, and click that comes to this website and hope to make it a place worth stopping by in the coming year!

Happy New Year!

We are ringing in the new year between homes (we’re waiting for that truck to arrive with all our stuff… any… day… now) relaxing in the mountains in Santa Fe. This time last year I was sitting with my four month old in the ICU while he recovered from surgery on his skull. So, needless to say, this year is already looking better than the last!

2020 is going to have bad days, bad news, hard decisions, and moments I’m not proud of, that is a guarantee. It’s also going to be full of beautiful days, laughter, love, peacefulness, growth, and new adventures.

My wish for all of us is that we have the strength to wake up each morning and face whatever comes with a thankful heart and, when we fail at that, we have the strength to try again tomorrow. I hope the first day of the year is a good one for you and I wish us all a Happy New Year!

 

{it’s my birthday} Self Care at 36

Self care is not the same as self indulgence although we see these two used interchangeably over and over again. While a good glass of wine, a night of binge watching, or a new pair of shoes could certainly qualify as a form of self care, that’s not really what it’s about. Self care should fill you up not diminish or drain you in any way, and it might take work but the pay off is a healthier you. I’ve been practicing true self care the past few months and today I’m looking at what self care is for me at 36!

Skin care routine

This one is new for me, but a few weeks ago I did my research (via the internet and also my skincare guru sister in-law) and stocked up when Sephora had their big sale. When I figure out the products I really love I’ll be happy to share, but deciding to spend the money and the time on my skin makes me feel good every morning. The ritual feels good as does knowing I’m taking care of myself! I don’t wear a ton of make up so having healthy skin gives me confidence and just makes me feel better when I have to get out and face the world.

Working Out

I’ve always been active and have usually taken some kind of exercise class through the years. This past summer I joined my husband’s gym membership and we got serious about making work outs a part of our daily routine. I mix up cardio with interval training (right now I’m using the Sweat app and I love it!) and I’m starting to feel the results. I feel stronger and my endurance is up! The fact that all my pre baby clothes are fitting is a fun bonus, but truly working out for my mental and physical health has been a game changer.

Setting Goals

The past few months I’ve taken Elise’s advice and used the three goal rule. Every month I set three goals for myself and then use the following weeks’ and days’ plans to help me get there. I have a lot to say about this, but breaking down the big picture into smaller bites has really changed what I can get done and I’ve seen the benefits of taking things slow and steady.

NY Times Sunday Subscription

Listen, the New York Times is far from perfect and I had canceled it awhile ago, but when they recently ran a three month special I decided to try it again. Getting the full paper on Sunday is lovely, ahhh the arts section is worth the price alone, but I’ve found myself using the digital version every day along with their food app and recipes. I don’t always love what I read but I’ve found that my anxiety about the world is less when I do a deep dive than it is just scrolling Twitter for headlines.

Buying books

I use my library and will never stop that, but lately I’ve been buying the books I’m looking forward to reading. I look for authors that I love and support them by preordering their books. Then if I know I’ll never read that book again, I give it away! The library is amazing and you should use it all you can, but I like the anticipation of the new book being delivered or finding a gem in my local bookstore every now and then.

Therapy

I started therapy because of something horrible that happened but I wish I started so much earlier. I go once a week and it has changed my life. I leave feeling empowered and like I have the tools to make real, lasting change in my life. I know finding a therapist can be daunting and the price can be steep, but it’s so worth it.

Sleep

Listen, I have no qualms about climbing in bed at 9pm at this point in my life. I used to be such a night owl but now I need that sleep! I try to have good bed time practices so I get quality rest and I know this is such a boring thing, but man it is important.

Buying the good stuff, just less of it

I think one of the secrets to happiness is having less stuff but making sure the stuff you have is the good stuff-  whatever that means to you! After our big clear out this summer and before our big move, we’ve been looking at everything we own and deciding if it’s worth keeping, if it’s time to replace, or if it’s something we even need to own anymore. I don’t think you need a move to start thinking this way, it just pushes you to get it done!