This and That….and it’s February?

I am doing great when it comes to this Valentine thing this year.  Two kids have Valentine’s ready to go to school.  I’ve decorated with flowers and heart garlands.
I’ve bought the cards.  I’ve even wrapped the little treats the kids will get for the day.

We don’t do anything too big.  It’s more about just enjoying time together and I make the day all about hearts.  I turn every single meal into a heart if I can.

With a heart shaped cookie cutter the possibilities are endless! Cucumber for a healthy Valentines day:

Heart shaped Cucumbers for Lunch on Valentine’s day

So are you watching the Bachelor?  Those cucumbers remind me of the show, since the girl that is causing most of the drama so far is 24 with a nanny, that cuts up cucumbers for her.  It’s hilarious actually!  Unfortunately I am watching this season.  I am again, leading my league…of over 20+ people.  It’s insanity.  I can’t believe I started a Bachelor Fantasy League just a few years ago as a joke…..and this is how far we’ve come.  The pot is worth $$$$  And I have formal invites to send out.  I’ve booked the bartender, servers, rentals, and even have a start on my menu.

Nick is probably the worst Bachelor yet.  I think he is dull.  He has low self esteem and is in need of constant assurance from everyone.  It’s just one big bless his heart.  I don’t care for how much he talks about his ‘dating’ life.  As in how many women he has had relations with.  It’s so gross and tacky and just is so disrespectful towards the women and himself.

Either way I’m into this season pretty deep.  I think it’s the group in the league that makes it fun.  What better way to make January, February actually fun?  In Colorado it’s cold and if you aren’t caught up in ski season, it’s kind of bleak.  January and February for me is being caught up in homework with the kids, their schedules and slowing trying to get a jump on spring cleaning!  Fun right?

We are dreaming about the beach.  I think we dream about it every single day.  But, we are already thinking ahead to the summer, the spring, everything in between and after.  Last year spring break was spent in Punta Cana.  I don’t know that we will get to revisit there this year…….

Bavaro Beach,Punta Cana,Dominican Republic - the BEST beach in the Dominican:

Punta Cana beach walk

It’s hard to believe that we are closer to spring break than we are to Christmas at this point.  I am looking at summer camps, and cringing.  It seems like every year time flies by faster.

This week are experiencing spring like weather.  It’s amazing.  So it has me thinking about landscaping.  This is the year we are FINALLY going to get our backyard steps closer to the vision that I have been dreaming of for years now.  When we moved in we tackled just getting rid of over grown gross trees (cedar. YUCK!) and taking out grapevines, raspberry bushes that were over grown, and bushes that caused awful drainage.  I’m excited to finally get a privacy wall up.  Hopefully have all the gross pavestone taken away.  I don’t know what it is in Colorado, but it seems like everyone thinks you have to do this red/brown stone.  Our house looks Colonial from the outside.  We sit in a neighborhood surrounded by some really old historical homes.  Our street is a historical district that can be painful to make any changes to your home.  The pavestones just don’t fit in!  I’m dreaming of trees right now!

We want to make a plant 'fence' for noise reduction and privacy along the backyard. Prettier and less expensive than a fence.:

Looking for more English garden than rock garden.

Of course all this dreaming will come to a halt when it snows ten feet.  Not that it’s going to happen.  But, it is Colorado.  You never know!

Happy Valentine’s to all of you.  I am certain there are a lot of engagements to come over the next five days.  It’s the most romantic time of the year!

Valentine Wedding Inspiration - LaurenKelp.com:

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Current mood…..

On this snowy winter morning.

I don’t like snow.  I hear people talk about the amount of ski days they get in with such pride.  Snow days on the slopes do not impress me.  We were having drinks a few weeks ago and the stranger next to us struck up a lovely conversation.  Right up until he told us how many days he skied in 2016.  My hubby was polite and said some encouraging words.  I started mentally rearranging my laundry room storage.

It’s like if I were to brag about how many beach days I got in.  I never would do that.  It’s just odd ball.   It  wasn’t until I moved to CO that I heard people talk about how many days of skiing they got in.  And in a former life I actually use to go on ski trips with a group of friends.  I never would have thought that I was supposed to say it was a good year, I got in x amount of days of skiing.  Who knew this was a thing!  The older I get, the more  I hate being cold.  The older I get the more I realize silence is golden.  A cup of coffee or a good class of wine while reading a book is divine.  Helping Bubba with getting one tiny piece of Lego back on his current set that he over looked…..can be rewarding.  Having Priss quote from Gone with the Wind is a whole new level of parenting!  Especially when she said she can’t wait to read it one day!

I have a list of projects for 2017.  I’m hoping I can get at least half of them completed.  Here’s to making home where the heart always wants to be.  This day has me thinking of spring because I’m already feeling anxious and behind on things I need to do!

Cheers!  Stay warm!
For the record I’m a zero on ski days.
Zero on beach days.

 

 

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Cheers to 2016!

I thought I’d get one last post in for the year.  Given that I have not posted at all lately!

It’s going to be a fairly quiet night for us.  We had parties we could attend.  But, we are opting for a night at home with just us.  I hate being on the road.  It just makes me so nervous.  And oddly hubby has gotten to where he too doesn’t like to be out and about on this night.

We are planning on this though…..

Image result for caviar tray

It has been an amazing year for us.  We feel very blessed.

We are blessed.  Let’s just say that.  When I think about things we’ve been able to do this year, memories created.   It’s been good.  Everything.
And we do not take it for granted.

I hope that everyone has a wonderful night.

We look forward to the new adventures in store for us in 2017.

Cheers!

 

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It’s Fall Y’all

Free SVG cut files - It's Fall Y'all:

I think if my blog could be taken away from me due to neglect……it would be understandable.  It’s October!  I can’t even believe it.

The kids have been back to school for weeks.  We’ve had our first conferences.  Costumes are in, decorations are going up and I feel like it’s still summer.  Maybe that’s because it’s a nice 75 degrees, sunny and hot today.

I’ve said for years this year with both kids would be the year of me.  So far I’ve managed to redecorate a guest room, get a storage room in order, and find lot’s of projects to add to my list but maybe not accomplish all at once.

We have a ton going on between soccer, lacrosse, ballet, my never ending volunteering and basically life.  As I sat down after a game today to send some emails out, I thought how nice it would be if I got to just hang out on a Saturday without kids activities.  But, then I quickly thought…..these days do go by quickly.  One day we really will be on our own on a Saturday while kids are in college….out of the house.  I don’t want to wish these days away.

It was an interesting week.  It’s been 4 years since we lost Cooper.  This was the first year that I woke up without dread in my heart and fear of how I would deal with the day.  Time doesn’t let you forget. Time allows you to grieve and grow.  I saw a quote recently that was along the lines of “I asked God why he was taking me through the water.  He replied because your enemy can’t swim.”  It’s stuck with me.  I believe if God takes you through it, he sees you through it.  I go back to that you have to have faith and that if you want to be blessed in life, you have to realize it can’t all be good.  Losing a child is hard.  It didn’t just hurt for me, but my husband, and our children.  We are a closer family for it.  We surround ourselves with people that supported us then, and continue to four years later.

We were handed a storm on that day 10/11/12.  We came out different people.  I don’t know why God gave us that storm.  I don’t know why a lot of the things happened at that time. We’ve tried to remember the lessons we’ve learned, and help others if we can.

So here we are in the middle of fall and looking forward to all that have to be thankful for.

We are putting up the Halloween decorations today, and I am secretly trying to get myself together for Christmas.  It’s like 70???? days until Christmas?  I’ve started thinking of gift ideas.  I need to bite the bullet and actually buy some gifts!  It’s going to sneak up on us.

We had contemplated going away the Saturday after Thanksgiving.  Flights are grossly priced!  We had thought about going away in a week and do a surprise Disney trip.  Thank goodness we didn’t!  Friends were there with lines that were 180 minutes long.  Can you imagine?!?!?!?!

Now I am just quietly getting Advent wreathes together, trying to make sure I have enough wrapping paper, and plotting out what decorations to do and not to do.  I’m not going to lie, if I could put up a real tree today that would last until December 31st, I’d do it.

In cleaning out the storage room I found out that I may only have 50 to 60 rolls of assorted Christmas ribbon.  It’s a disease.  I’m cutting myself off until I use it all up.  It may take 5 years!

Bubba turns 6 soon.  If he asked for one Lego he asked for ten.  And he doesn’t understand why he can’t do more of the models that are for people age 16 and older.  Bless him.

This is my favorite time of year!  I am certain there are a lot of brides in Colorado this fall, that have been pleased as punch with the weather.  If they were taking photos today they would be standing under yellow leaves falling from the trees. It’s gotta be one of the prettiest weekends in Denver!  I love it.

Happy Fall!  I’ll try to blog again before Easter.

Cheers!

 

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Summer

Y’all it’s summer and you can tell by my lack of blogs.  I don’t have the time to sit down and put anything to paper (computer).  Our days are filled with playdates, pool time, summer workbooks, reading (oh are we reading!) and doing next to nothing when there is nothing else to do.  We have seen so many friends this summer (which is great since it seems like we wait to catch up with everyone towards the end of the summer.)  It’s been one of my favorite summers yet.

The kids are also enjoying music lessons this summer.  I’m not certain I will ever enjoy the Bubba playing his guitar.  But, here’s hoping!  We have lemonade stand plans.  Camping trips, and bouncy castle parties on the calendar.

After years of getting landscaping quotes….I finally have found my very own guy to do everything I ever dreamed of.  It’s been life changing in my house!
I’ve dreamed of brick borders and English gardens in our backyard forever.  In Colorado everyone always wants to give you flagstone (I despise flagstone) rocks, roses that grow between rock gardens and fruit trees I’ve noticed.  I have constantly asked for designs that remind you of an English garden and never had anyone give me a plan that fulfilled those plans.  I finally started working through a design on my own, but the labor has been the difficult part.  Hubby doesn’t have time to do borders of brick, and I certainly didn’t have the time myself.

Herringbone Brick walkways and stairs Saratoga | Yelp:

Enter Landscaper T, and he’s been the best!  I never thought I’d luck out and find someone that got what the vision is and do it!  I’m currently waiting for our fish pond to get a whole new makeover.  Believe me it’s been an eyesore!  We also have way too many fish.  So if you know anyone looking to stock a pond, send them our way.

We are dreaming about our vacations to come.  Although this summer is again a summer where Hubby has staff out and that means longer days for him.  So our summer travel plans have kind of been cut to a minimum.  Luckily he is his own boss….so we can make up for it later in the year with a fun trip!

I’ve been busy filling out my new agenda!


I love a LP agenda.  I am feeling pretty happy about how organized I am for the next year or so.  I am so old school that I still do a wall calendar.  It’s the only way I can keep on my husband with keeping up with our daily schedules at home.

Our summer has been a little different than what I thought it would be…..due to a car accident the day after school let out.  We are all fine.  But, I have landed in weekly physical therapy appointments.  Plus I  have a car that need repair and it’s been a pure headache getting insurance companies to do what they are supposed to.   I fear for the day my children are driving and hope before then we become a country that doesn’t text and drive….and all become a hands free country.  Not just a few states.  I absolutely despise people that can’t just drive  And this includes friends these days.  I’m sickened that there are people that are either so important in their minds or that they think they can’t go five minutes without checking Facebook.  I’m over it.  And I’ve always been reluctant to put my kids in other peoples cars that I know text or spend a lot of time on social media.  But, now I am definitely being a bit more vocal on it.  Let’s just say the gloves have come off over this topic and it literally added insult to injury when it happened since I rarely even talk on the phone while driving.  Let alone sends a text while driving!  Never.

We bid a fond farewell to our favorite tennis court last week.  The JCCs tearing all the courts down.  But, we were so lucky to get one more week in.  It’s going to be a few years before they are back.  
Summer is keeping us busy.  I can’t believe we are already this many weeks in!  I so wish it would slow down.  I love having the kids home (still.)  The five year old has started the whole talking to just talk habit.  Sometimes it’s cute.  Sometimes Priss and I look at one another and pray he stops soon.

I hope all of you are enjoying your summer!

Cheers!

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Flowers….

The kids are picking out ‘craft’ projects for the summer.  I had to giggle that this was on idea.  They suggested if they got really good at them then perhaps they could sell them too.

Flower Twisting Craft Tutorial – Quick And Easy #iCraft - #MyValentine #iCraft Ideas:

This morning was a little tearful for the Bubba.  He got up late.  Dug his heels on on getting ready.

I could tell it was an ‘off’ day.  I brought up that it was his last day for lunch bunch (he gets to stay longer three days a week and have lunch and playtime.) He got the biggest crocodile tears in his eyes.  He said he wanted to stay the Little Bubba.

He visited his class for next year, yesterday.  He was all too familiar with the class since his sister was in there only a few years ago.  He is excited to be in there.  Excited to have the teachers.  It’s lucky for me it’s only a few doors down the same hallway where he’s been the last few years.  It’s really hard knowing that we are out of the preschool program now.  No more Mother’s day teas, little plays, volunteering in the class when they do work.  It’s always said to be bittersweet.  For me it’s miserable right now.  I’m going to miss the Bubba walking home with me holding my hand and telling me his stories of the day.

Yesterday Priss held my hand on the way home and told me not to sing anymore.  Which made me laugh til I cried it was so funny!

I can’t believe its a week away to summer kick off!  We are not having a summer full of camps.  I can’t plan camps in January like other mom’s do.  I like summer days where we can do whatever we want.  Go to the pool.  Go to the library.  Stay up late.  Or leave town.

I can’t imagine what it must be like for a child that gets out of school on Friday for the summer and on Monday starts a full summer of daycare, camps.  I think we all need a break.  Every mom I see right now says the same thing.  They are ready to end packing lunches.  Making sure there are uniforms and socks.  We are barely making it with our shoes right now.  I think on the last day we will burn all the tennis shoes.  There’s not a pair of jeans without holes in the knees.  Uniform shirts look like they have been worn and washed 200 times!

In other words.  Bring on the summer!!!!

 

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Making a Home

I just loved this article so much I had to share.  I am forever asking parents that have children that return home in a healthy way how they did it.  Don’t we all know a family that seems to  have it together?  I have clients that have a blended family where everyone gets along.  To the point that sometimes I think the mom would like it if they all decided not to come back for Christmas.  She says the shopping takes  her months.  She is so funny!  FOr years I have always stopped and asked “Now how did you make such a happy family happen?”  Where they like to travel together or spend time together.  Where everyone respects one another but are not on top of one another.

Last week something came up about how much time I’ll want to spend with Priss when she gets older with kids.  It was such a weird question.  I told her I would be like our friends mother who is like a grandmother to everyone that knows her.  She never intrudes and never has a bad thing to say.  You just want to be around her all the time.  She’s so fun!  She loves to sit on the patio and have wine, but is just as likely to jump at a two mile walk.  I think everyone wants to be her.  She also reads a ton of books and always has the best recommendations.  Her kids like having her around as do their spouses.  But, she will be the first to say it doesn’t just happen that everyone is happy in their family.  She says years ago when her kids were little she laid out in her mind what life would be like when her kids left the nest.

This article brings some of her points full circle!  Such a great read and one to revisit I am certain over the years as your kids grow up.

building a home your kids want to come home to

 

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I’m ready for summer!

This weather is such a downer today!  I am ready for warm weather to come and stay!
tidal pools #southcaroina:

I am ready for a beach trip.  I’m ready for everyone to sleep in.  I can’t wait to have lazy mornings (although we will have to do workbooks and such.)
I’m ready for bike rides, days spent at the pool that go into the night.  Dinners in the backyard with friends while kids run screaming through the yard.  Too much rose while lounging in the backyard.  And that moment I actually will get excited about packing lunches again for school.  I’ve said it before I am that weird mom that loves having kids home.  I love when we make our own schedules and actually have a break from the day to day homework, errands, activities.

Only a few weeks to go!  Come on summer…..and sun!

 

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Mother’s Day 2016

Happy Mother’s day to all the mom’s I know.  When I think about how many new mom’s there are now that I had the pleasure of spending one of the days of importance (their wedding day) with…..it makes my heart skip a beat.

I am so thankful for the mom I have that has led me to become the mom that I am.  I think we take lessons from our parents and forge our own way.  Priss will say to other’s that I make holidays special.  I have my mom to thank for that.  For as long as I can remember she would make Valentine boxes with us for cards.  Easters would be a hunt for a basket.  Santa still visits us.  She would entertain when we were growing up and make a simple dish seem so glamorous just on how she served it.  Shrimp cocktail in an old champagne glass seemed so amazing to me.  She volunteered for everything at school.  Ran more fall festivals than I am sure she would like to remember.

I believe in living a life with no regrets.  But, yet I do.  I regret that sometimes I buy a piece of fabric that never is used.  Another picture from that never is hung.  I regret buying a pair of shoes that hurt after wearing for only an hour.  Sometimes the house isn’t as organized as I like because just as soon as I clean out closets, two children have grown again and I have to sort clothes again!  I regret that just as soon as I get my side of the garage cleaned up and organized that I am filling it back up with another project that will more than likely sit for months due to how busy we are with our children.

I DO NOT regret buying a house that was maybe a tad more than we planned on spending, affords us the luxury of a 3 minute walk to and from school.  That we can hear the church bells everyday.  I don’t regret attending every soccer, lacrosse, ballet, baseball, you name it extra curricular activity the kids have.  I do not regret being classroom mom to two classes this year, taking on two class creations, and giving my hours to fundraising for our school of wonderful teachers.  I do not regret the hours of helping an Elf surprise the kids each morning, or making a breakfast for a birthday with a pancake shaped into a number.  Setting every single birthday, Valentine, Christmas, Halloween, holiday in general table.  I do not regret the mounds of laundry that go neglected when Priss asks if I want to watch another episode of her favorite show with her.  I do not regret passing on events that I know would only bring stress to my life hence bringing stress to my family.  I am thankful for the husband that will encourage my event schedule when he knows it is going to fulfill me.  But, just as quickly says “we need you.  I don’t want you working on this event.” if it means keeping me happy and home.  I will never regret every single book I read at night.  How many times a day I brush everyones teeth.  Or how many times I run up and down stairs to find socks that match for school, uniforms, or jeans that don’t have holes in them.  I am so thankful for the many wonderful trips and family time we spend together.  I am thankful for this life of motherhood that I always wished for even as a little girl.  But, goodness who knew it could be this wonderful?  When I see the Bubba hugging his sister and saying “I’m going to hug your bones out.”  I know I’m doing something right.  They are both two sweet, kind, caring, funny children.  Bubba has started showing a comedic side to himself that has everyone in stitches.  Priss continues to be her patient self and such a hard little worker.  I feel very lucky.

I know there are so many celebrating today that may have lost their mom.  Or have not had the chance to become mom’s yet themselves.  I know it’s hard to see everyone celebrating.  I hope you find something today that brings you joy and happiness.

I think we are one of the few that do not have sports to deal with today.  I’ve heard some of the older boys moms mention multiple games today.   I am going to see what gardening I can get out of everyone.  It started off with the favorite tradition of cupcakes and coffee.  The sun is out for now and I plan on enjoying it as much as I can.

Have a lovely day where ever you are and whatever you are doing!

Cheers

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Winner Winner Chicken Dinner

This week we’ve been trying to get dinner finished early and ready to bed even earlier.  Everyone is still really dragging from the vacation hangover.  We thought for some reason we had a three hour time difference.  It was only a two hour.  DUH.  But, that’s vacation for you.  Do you ever really know what’s going on if all you plan to do is relax?

We ate fairly healthy on this trip.  In the Dominican they are not very dairy heavy.  It’s for the most part I’d say clean eating.  Now I didn’t try the goat on the menu.  We did eat a lot of lobster.  Like Hubby has the story that he ate three lobsters.  Someone asked while he was there?  Ummmm no, at one dinner.  I am not a big lobster fan typically.  I’ll eat it.  But, I find it to be hit or miss in taste.  The lobster we had was amazing.  I too had a few while there.

Coming home I’m trying to get back to really clean eating for us.  Monday morning came the obligatory Whole Foods run where I brought home two huge bags of just fruit and fresh veggies.  Why is it after vacation you crave broccoli?  Or is that just me?

But, in all the clean eating I’ve had to have something on the menu almost every night to keep the Bubba fed.  He’s our picky eater.  He could and would live off mac n cheese if he was allowed.  He loves a pasta.  He loves a cheese sauce.  He’s not a big meat eater at all.  But, he will eat salmon.  Loves broccoli and brussel sprouts.

Last night was the first night that he actually has eaten everything we had on our plates except for the tomatoes.  Which I don’t fault him b/c I am not a fan of tomatoes either.  I eat them.  But, rarely do I think they are that great.  Our neighbors use to bring over bowls of their cherry tomatoes fresh from the garden and THAT I did love.

This has been a menu in our rotation for years.

Grilled Chicken with Tomato-Avocado Salad Recipe

Grilled Chicken with Tomato and Avocados

I went into the store yesterday with not a clue what I would make for dinner.  I had a raging headache to boot too.  I’ve had a sinus infection since flying home!  When I walked in and saw all the cheap avocados (which always means when a fruit or veggie is cheap it’s in season and you need to eat them)  I thought of this recipe.

Corn is not in season.  So I skipped that.  I added black olives to the plate.  I did roma tomatoes and I tripled the amount of avocado on the plates.  I wish I had used an entire large onion.  I used half and everyone wanted more.  I didn’t think Bubba would eat it…..

For this recipe you do make your own ranch dressing.  I tweak it into my own recipe because rarely do I have buttermilk on hand.  Last night I did sour cream watered down with milk.  Same thing.  I didn’t have cider vinegar and used champagne vinegar.  I didn’t have parsley and nobody missed it.  If you have the time to blend the dressing it’s great.

If I had company I would make the french bread on the grill.  But, it was just us.  I had whole grain left from two nights before when all we ate was avocado spread with soup.

When I sat down to dinner Bubba had already started eating before prayer….which is a huge no no in our house.  He said “Mommy YOU HAVE TO TRY the olive in the ranch with avocado.”

He devoured his plate.  Everyone was happy b/c for one they all get to make their own little bites.  My kids love ranch.  Which is NOT something to brag about!  But, given that this is a healthy meal, I’m fine with it.  The plate is really pretty too.  I don’t mix everything together.  I separate it on the plate and then lightly drizzle ranch on top of it.  They don’t get as much of it as they think they do.  Priss said last night it was a really colorful.  It was!  Green, red, purple, black, white and the chicken with the seasoning…..it is pretty!

I only wish corn, tomato and avocado season hit at all the same time more often.
Can you tell we are dreaming of summer?  This is such a summer meal.  I can’t believe it’s April.  The next two months are packed with soccer, soccer, lacrosse, ballet, school festivities.  I don’t know where this year has gone.  This year has flown by more so than any other.

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