Thursday, November 28, 2013


Thankful for these turkeys, and so much more. If there's one thing I learned this year, it's that I am a lucky duck.

Friday, November 22, 2013

Tight ship

Lately, whenever Chip or I make a statement to or a request of Charlie, we get a snappy "Yes, sir!" in response. I suspect accompanying salutes won't be far behind.

While I guess I should appreciate these military-style manners, I can't help but have a sneaking suspicion that our two-year-old son has somehow already mastered sarcasm.

Thursday, November 14, 2013

Welcome to the second floor

In keeping with yesterday's theme of taking notice of the small things that make life so nice, I would be remiss if I didn't share that Buddy is now a regular visitor to the second floor. Visitor is probably incorrect, as he now comes and goes at his leisure and spends the night in our room. While the leather couch no doubt provides a superior sleeping experience to his dog bed, I think even he would agree that it's nice to be closer to the rest of us.

I know it's silly, but I just did not like the fact that he was separated from us for chunks of the day and every single night. And I especially missed him on the days I work from our home office. I was just starting to ease Chip into the idea of putting a runner on our stairs when Buddy finally turned a corner. Feeding the kids their peanut butter English muffins in the office is apparently what it took for Buddy to decide that mastering the stairs was worth his time.

Of course, the downside to this story is that I frequently have to shoo him off of Mary Clare's bed (her white bed, I might add), but he's worth the occasional lint roll.

Wednesday, November 13, 2013

A really nice day

Yesterday was a pretty normal day around here. School for the kids, work for Chip and I — nothing out of the ordinary. But it was such a nice day.

After walking Mary Clare to school, which are no lie, often the best two blocks of my day, I returned home to work, only to hear the doorbell ring and find that one of my dear friends had sent me flowers.

At 11 a.m., I headed back to Holy Redeemer to read to Mary Clare's class. I was a last-minute fill-in for another parent, and it was a complete surprise to Mary Clare. To say that she was thrilled was an understatement. I think she gave me three hugs right off the bat, one more fierce than the last. Reading to her class was hilarious, and it was fun to put faces with names. Then it was off to the office for a super productive afternoon topped off by kind compliments from a coworker about the cuteness of our kiddos. After work, it was back to Holy Redeemer to get Mary Clare, where even more sweetness ensued. (The kid, she is killing me.) As we walked up the walk to our house, we found a sweet welcome package from our church's women's group, complete with a dozen gourmet cookies, waiting for us on the front porch.

When Chip and Charlie rolled in the door, the kids busied themselves playing (nicely, for the most part) with the awesome "Cars" play sets that my mom recently scored on a garage sale. (Said play sets are so awesome that Charlie was actually shaking with excitement and stammering "uhhh uhhh uhhh" when he saw them for the first time.) Dinner was peaceful, the cookies were a nice treat for dessert, and bedtime, while exhausting where Charlie is concerned, went by without any significant threats.

Like I said, an average day, no doubt, but a really nice average day. It reminded me to enjoy the little things and not get so caught up in all that needs to be accomplished or all that went wrong with this or that. So thanks to everyone who made my day so nice. It did not go unnoticed.

Monday, November 11, 2013


So, seven years. Which is usually lucky seven, right?

Well, without a doubt, this year was perhaps one of our most trying. We sold our house, moved from neighbors and a church we loved (and where we were married and baptized both kiddos), moved in with my parents, commuted (with the kids) to/from St. Louis for five months, bought a new house, remodeled said house, moved again and are now getting a feel for the lay of the land in our new house, community and church.

There were moments that tested our patience, there were days and weeks where we tested each others patience, but in the end it all worked out. We may not have agreed on everything, but we agreed when it counted most. So yeah, I'll go ahead and decree that year seven was lucky for us.*

Another thing this year taught me is that no matter how great our relationship is, no matter how in sync we are or how hard we work, we can't go it alone. Thankfully, our parents are supportive and generous with their time (and homes) and our siblings and friends are equally excellent. They say it takes a village to raise a child, but I think that same village can come in pretty handy when it comes to nurturing a marriage and family. That leading by example business is the real deal. It also means we need to up our good deeds game.

So, while this year felt like a blur, it was blurry in a good way. So here's to sitting back and enjoying year eight, one another and those three nuts that moved into this house with us. I love you. 

*Please note, I did knock on wood after typing that. This house business has made me uber superstitious.