Friday, August 31, 2012

Travel | By the light of the silvery moon

I'm going to do some backtracking over the next couple weeks and share some more photos from our July trip. There are just too many sweet moments, and I know our families would love seeing them. We, especially Sebastian, continue to miss everyone. And today, we especially miss Pawpaw (Happy Birthday! Wish we could have been with you to celebrate!).

These pictures are from Moonlite. The best—and quite famous—BBQ joint in Owensboro, Kentucky. We went there to celebreate Grandaddy's birthday, because where else would one go!?

Thursday, August 30, 2012

Bruno | Sleepy pout

This baby. 

This huge baby. 

This huge, perfect baby.

Tomorrow we go to the Ped's to see just how huge he is. They don't need to tell me how perfect he is.

Home | Housekeeping revelations and reveal-ations.

I'm about to get real with you all.

Here are photos of our apartment—our messy, lived in apartment. And boy does it get so much worse than this, in case you're wondering. I just didn't share those pictures because 1) that's not what it looks like today, and 2) because, oh wait, those pictures don't exist because it's a state I'd rather forget about rather than memorialize in photos.

Now there are usually two reasons for sharing photos like these.

The first case scenario is a blogger sharing messy photos of her home to show everyone that she is, indeed, a real person with real messes, and that her home doesn't always look like a studio and her meals don't always look like they were photographed for Kinfolk.

When this happens, the reader (or maybe it's just me?) comes away thinking, "Yea, okay. So it gets messy like 1% of the time, but how to you keep it clean the other 99%? Because it sure does look like it's tidy and artful in all of your pictures except these.

The second scenario is worse. It's when a blogger shares photos of the same things and supposedly for the same reasons as the scenario one blogger, but what's remarkable about these photos is that they don't really look that bad. You know what I'm talking about. Her home is "messy." And in case you're new to the blogging world, "messy" in quotation marks means that the mess was apparently done in an artistic way. I don't know about you and yours, but I and mine never make good-looking messes.

My response to scenario two is always something like, "Wow, we must not just have artistic blood running through our veins..." Or, "Her husband must be artsy fartsy, too." Or, "Well she obviously is just more with it than me." Or, when I'm not feeling sorry for myself... "She totally tidied her mess before she took those pictures!"

And now you have the longest explanation possible of the two things I'm most assuredly not trying to say to you with these pictures of our messy apartment.

The whole point of showing you these pictures is to share with you something I've learned about housekeeping when you have little ones, or anyone actually living there and not just posing for artful pictures in a magazine quality studio-esq space that you just pretend to live in. I just learned this today, so if you figured this out in like second grade or something, be nice and don't tell me for a few days so I can glory in my seeming brilliance for a little while.

What I've learned is tidy vs. clean, and which one I like better. Ask Cody. He'll tell you that few things annoy me as much as a messy apartment, but the one thing that does annoy me even more than that, is a dirty, grimy, the-bathroom-is-gross apartment. And so, when I have a few minutes to do something, I no longer dedicate it to the messes, but to the grime. When you look past the messes in these photos, you'll find floors that have been freshly swept and mopped, a bathroom that is squeaky clean and smells like spearmint, and the dishes might even be clean (but they aren't right now).

The result of this is that 1) I'm not embarrassed when someone randomly drops by, 2) I'm not embarrassed when someone unexpectedly uses our bathroom, 3) I'm not frustrated when my toddler completely un-does all the toy-tiding I just spent my 15 minutes of allotted daily free-time doing,  4) I don't get dirt stuck to my bare feet, which is annoying, and 5) I'm bound to be a lot nicer to Cody when he leaves his laundry on the floor (unless it's in the way of the vacuum!) or has a pile of coursework on the table.

I don't know why I didn't think of this before...

Of course, I still love a tidy house, but I'll do that after the cleaning and/or after the toddler is in bed. You've got to pick and prioritize your battles.

P.S. In case you couldn't care less about the cleanliness of our apartment, and simply prefer to ooo and aaahh over my babies (I get it)... there is an ooo-worthy photo coming right up.

Saturday, August 25, 2012

Home | Look, Grandmother!

Cody's grandmother, and thus my grandmother (there are some pretty fabulous perks that come with marriage), has a marvelous little greenhouse that grandaddy built onto the side of their house. In it is a lush and prosperous spider plant. Grandmother was kind enough to give me a couple cuttings from it, which I just planted tonight. I really hope they take root, as I've never worked with cuttings before. I also planted one from my Golden Pothos—an old friend. I love the idea of sharing from one plant and passing pieces of it on to others.

It's like the horticulturist's version of the friendship bracelet.

Brothers [NEW!] | Together, forever, that's how it must be

Reading to Bruno in Hillsdale.

"Look at me! I'm going to invade your space, knock your play mat to the ground, and pick you up!" 
"Kick! Kick!" Seb likes Bruno's special talents, kicking being the most impressive.

In which I dump on you a lot of melt-your-heart-right-down-to-your-toes pictures of my two littlest men being brothers. You're welcome.

P.S. Technically, this is the first brothers post. That play mat really brings them together...

Friday, August 24, 2012

Bruno | The snuggler

He's my little Koala bear.

Home | A week with Dada + The great TV removal

This week has been our one week of summer, at home, with Cody.

It has been so wonderful to just take each day as it comes, and let all of our unaccomplished goals roll off our backs at the end of the day, knowing that, for now, sitting with Seb and reading a bazillion books is more important than cleaning out the den. We have accomplished a few things though, the most noteworthy of which was rearranging our living room because we just couldn't stand it anymore. A part of that rearranging was moving the TV to our den—a temporary storage place—not an unknown role for the den, to be sure. This simple change has made an enormous difference in each of our days. I realized yesterday that I've been going to bed 3-4 hours earlier, Cody has been staying up 3-4 hours later reading, and Seb doesn't ask to watch a movie the. entire. day. hallelujah. If you feel like your TV is detracting from your home life or that your kids are watching it too much, just take it out of the equation. I promise you won't regret it. We plan to keep it, for now, because we do love watching the occasional movie. But having it in the other room just makes us evaluate how we really want to spend our evenings, and makes us work for that movie just a little bit more.

So much to be thankful for these days.

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Style | A whole lotta pretty + links!

My friend KD, the lovely lady in these photos, and mama to one beautiful little red-haired girl, shared a link to her friend's blog and Etsy shop on Facebook this morning. And I have to say... I am in love with these necklaces! I mean, The Chloe!? Thanks for introducing us to your talented friend and her shop!

Do you have a friend with a shop or blog? Heck, do you have a shop or blog that you've been hiding from me? Spill it, please. I love hearing about talented folks and what they're up to.


If I owned a restaurant, I would do this. via

Sincerely, Jill is back.

Recipe for Torrone. This needs to happen around Christmas, methinks.

If I ever have a girl, I'm doing this to her jeans.

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Travel | Celebrating Courtney

By far, the best part of our vacation was spending time with friends last week and over the weekend in preparation for my dear friend's wedding. This girl is the funniest, and most genuine little lady, and someone I admire so much. We were roomates for our last two years in college, and I'm so thankful for that, because it kept us together at times when not much else did. I mean, how far can two people drift when their beds are connected to make one long bed, foot-to-foot!? Best. Decision. Ever.

Anyway, when Kyle found himself quite smitten with Courtney, it was no surprise. What a match. I am over the moon for these two, and can't help but hope that we'll live close to them someday in the future.

Monday, August 20, 2012

Little One | Nifty

Cody frequently makes fun of me for my "tab problem." At any given time I'll have 25+ tabs open in multiple windows of things I want to blog about, tutorials I want to try or catalogue, blogs or articles I want to read, or things I just don't want to forget.

So in an effort to close another tab, and to give you a break from the delicious deluge of baby photos, I give you Nifty Kidstuff. I say "bravo" to this little shop. It's so refreshing to see some truly unique kid designs. I love the folk art, vintage feel, and the creativity and craftsmanship that shines through the designs. If you don't believe me, take a peek at this Quiet Book.

Also pictured:
Little Lion Man
Owlie Stroller Toy

Saturday, August 18, 2012

Home | Two boys headed to a party

A couple hours after arriving back home in Durham, we headed out to a party, because, you know, we just can't stop having fun. I snapped these pictures before we got in the car of my two handsome little guys. Goodness... they get me every time with those dreamy eyes.

Later we got to meet our brand new baby-neighbor, Finnegan. It's just all about a bunch of cute baby boys around here.

Tomorrow? Maybe we'll slow down a bit.


Travel | The last leg

We finish our two weeks of travel today, and I couldn't be more ready. Five hours—we can do it. Plus, poor Seb can't handle too many more mishaps... huge bonk on the head after a somersault gone awry, and pinched fingers in a door. 

Also, my little Brunstar is 2 months old today. Oh his kicks, his sweet "gooing," and his ever impressive smiles. I love that little man. 

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Mama | 8 weeks: Back in the game

Prepare yourself for the most absurd blog post of your life.

I went running yesterday and today! It was the first time I've worked out since Bruno was born, and it's so good to feel like a little something more than a blob. It's been sooooo long.

But the real news is that this girl wore her hair in a ponytail—the first ponytail since January of 2011. In case you're wondering, I don't plan to do this again anytime soon, but it was an encouraging sign that the long hair is, indeed, coming back!! It's the little things.

Husband | Olympian in his own right

It may not seem very super to most that Cody spent the majority of our time in Hillsdale snuggled on the couch with one of our babies, but oh let me tell you, he deserves a medal. I can see it now: "Superdads," the newest Olympic sport. To qualify for the event, dads must display exceptional selflessness, mad diaper changing and baby chasing skills, as well as magic heartbeats. All weekend, Cody was shooing me out of the house to spend time with my long lost friends. He knew how desperately I needed that time and those people, so when I said, "Cody, I'm so sorry you've been on constant baby duty while I've been out with friends," he said, "Mary, it's vacation!" To which I responded, "Yes, but it's your vacation, too!" And then he goes and says the most attractive thing a man can say, I think: "Mary... spending time with my sons is a vacation."

Oh yes he did.

Give this boy the gold.

Seb | Suspenders: Cute & Functional

Something happens when your cloth diapered baby wears disposable diapers... he drops his drawers—that's what. 

Seb's 2T pants are pretty snug with cloth, but fall to his ankles in disposable diapers, something which happened at the wedding this weekend when he quite literally danced out of his pants (thank you, Karen, for the description in your e-mail).

People assume we're making a fashion statement with our kiddo, but really, we're just trying to keep him decent. But I'll admit... it's cute, too.

These are the one's Seb is sporting. You can also find some cute and colorful ones here.