Sunday, September 29, 2013


A picture for last week! Although I don't know if this picture was actually taken last week or not...which might make this cheating.

It's ok though, don't worry about it. It's still a good one. Courtesy of the hubs!

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Camping - take two

This one is long winded! Don't worry, there ARE pictures when it's all said and done.

We went camping again! And now we have decided that camping in September is the way to go. We kept looking at each other and saying things like, "This is seriously 100 times better than last time!"

In July it was hot and sticky. In September it's breezy and cool.

In July the bugs were horrendous. In September there are no bugs.

In July the outhouses are like the saunas of your nightmares. In September they are airy and dare I say...somewhat pleasant?

Paisley LOVED it. I mean, she loved it last time too. But this time she could wander around the campsite in that drunken sailor way that toddlers have, shrieking with excitement at each tree and pinecone and leaf and chattering red squirrel.

And the tent. She LOVES the tent! Toddling back and forth between the doors, throwing herself onto the piles of blankets and sleeping bags and pillows, digging for her lost cheerios. And laughing the whole time. It was an absolute delight.

The only difficulties came when it was time for sleeping. You see, although I may look somewhat youthful, my back is that of a very old person. Who has a very bad and old back. We had our two little camping mats along with six blankets piled under them to try and make an adequate place for me to try and get my beauty sleep.

It didn't work.

Awake, awake, awake. I'm sure it didn't help that I was basically teetering on the edge of the mat all night, since we had the baby girl in bed with us too (it got down in the 50's that night and I didn't think she'd make it in her pack n' play on her own, especially since she's too wriggly to stay under the covers). Also? For some reason? Whatever side I was laying on, the opposite arm would fall asleep. So if I was lying on my left side my right arm fell asleep, and vice versa. Weird. Annoying.

So my night consisted of many hours lying wide awake, nudging the hubs every time he started to snore, flipping over because one of my arms was asleep, trying to find a good position for my back (there wasn't one), pulling Paisley back under the covers when she would work her way out, and watching her use Brian's face to push off of in the game of leap frog it appeared that she was playing in her sleep. That part was funny though.

And then! I had to pee.

Normally I'm not one who is too concerned about popping a squat in the woods in the middle of the night - such things don't bother me. But, as one often does when one is trying to fall asleep, I decided to try and ignore it.

Of course it only kept getting worse, as these situations do. And THEN, as one often does when planning a 2 am trek into the forest to pull their pants down and pee, I started thinking about all the things that might be out there in the middle of the woods in Minnesota.

The possibilities were endless! I soon grew more and more terrified thinking about the cougars and jaguars and bears and psycho killers and freakishly large Great White Sharks (we had just watched Jaws the week before) that were sure to attack when my back was turned.

But despite my growing (and in no way irrational) fears, I soon realized that if I wanted to hold on to any small shred of hope that I was going to get some sleep that night, I would indeed have to empty my bladder. So I decided that the hubs should probably know that I was going to be leaving the tent for a minute - that way he could rescue me when my stealthy attackers knocked me over in the midst of doing my business.

I mean, that would be the PERFECT time to attack someone, right? You are basically rendered useless while you are peeing.

But I have such a dear, sweet hubs, I do. There was no annoyance in his voice when I informed him of my plan, and he agreed he would stay awake until I came back.

And guess what, nothing attacked me! I was back and safe in our beloved tent within a minute.

"Did you actually RUN back?" the hubs chuckled.

"Yes," I said sheepishly.

I mean, what else WOULD I do?

I'd like to say that I immediately fell into a deep, peaceful sleep once I was back on my small corner of the mat but alas, let's just say that I will not be camping again until we buy ourselves a very large and cushy air mattress.

And now. The pictures.

In the very last one Paisley is letting out a barbaric YAWP in her pack n' play. You know, like Professor Keating from The Dead Poet's Society talks about. She was letting out lots of them while the hubs and I prepared lunch. Carpe Diem, and all that.

Monday, September 23, 2013

Recent work

As of late, I've been giving myself permission to have a little "me time" during Paisley's naps instead of using it as a time to keep up with housework. And let me tell you, it has been simply glorious. Once I put her down in her crib with her beloved Pinker bear and seahorse and I know she's asleep, I grab the monitor and laptop and head down to my art studio. I put a show on Netflix to play in the background and then dive into my pastels for a good couple of hours before she wakes up.

For awhile I would tell myself, "Well today you'd better do this cleaning or this chore and then TOMORROW you can do pastels." But then the next day there was a different chore to do, and then the next new messes that needed cleaning. And I realized. Hmmm. I think that having a toddler and a husband and two cats (and a myself) means that there will always be messes to clean and chores to be done.

So. If I want to do pastels I have to make the time! And guess what. The housework still somehow gets done, dinner still (usually) gets cooked, and everyone still survives. It's great.

Here are a couple of pieces that I've been particularly pleased with. I'm still experimenting and learning about how I like to work with color and it's not always successful, but super fun when it feels like it is.
For these portraits I didn't want to take the time to make them look exactly like the picture I was working from, but rather tried to keep it loose and quick, and the colors vibrant.

I'm seriously having so much fun with my beloved pastels!! Each color is a special little friend. I am planning on eventually listing some prints in my shop, but first have to figure out what kind of pieces I would like to create and the direction I would like to go from here.

Wednesday, September 18, 2013


We went camping at the beginning of this week so here is a little sneaky preview, adorable photo courtesy of the hubs.

It was great fun! Including red squirrels and water falls and tin foil dinners and no bugs. No bugs! I'll be sure to blog more about it later. But right now I have to go and try and find all of the sleep that I lost. It's sure to be around here somewhere.

Friday, September 13, 2013


Perfect day for the sandbox.

Baby girl is now in a "hide little trinkets all over the house" stage. I am frequently coming upon carefully placed animal magnets from the fridge (her favorites being the turtle and the rooster), flashcards, socks, all hidden away in nooks and crannies, drawers, mixing bowls, the insides of shoes. It's all sort of delightful. I just hope she hasn't been slipping anything into the trash can, because I don't usually make a habit of digging through our garbage.

Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Labor Day Vacay

Here's a few photos from our little family vacation over Labor Day weekend! We go up to a resort with the extended family on my mom's side every year and all stay in a big cabin and play games and eat great food and walk to the beach and eat ice cream and overall have a most excellent time. The weather over Labor Day always seems to be a hit or miss (and often it's a miss) but this time it was warm and sunny and beautiful. Paisley got plenty of attention and also got plenty messy at the beach and at the playground. (Which was like a dustbowl? Of playground equipment and tonka trucks and very, very dusty children, Paisley being amongst the dustiest of them all!)Also, look! A little week old Paisley with her brand new parents who are slightly terrified and incredibly sleep deprived from 2012, and a big one year + one week old Paisley and her slightly seasoned parents who are still somewhat sleep deprived (but only because they stay up late watching Inception instead of going to bed) from 2013. How fun. Plus Brian's wearing the same pair of shorts in both these photos, which is important to note.If you thought this post was a thrilling ride, then feel free to check out my Labor Day weekend post from 2011. Pre-baby, and pre-tan shorts! YOLO!

Thursday, September 5, 2013

Birthday Extravaganza

Paisley's birthday party was almost two weeks ago already! August did that thing that it always does where it becomes so busy that you abandon any type of routine or discipline in your life and just wing it for three weeks straight, hoping you'll make it out on the other side with everyone still alive and eating frozen pizza no more frequently than once a day.

Veggies are always the first to go in these types of situations. At least in our house. Who has time for veggies when your to do list is miles long but all you can focus on is getting the lake smell out of your swim suit?

Must...get...lake help me God.

But fear not, the veggies are back! I bought veggies from the store this week like you wouldn't believe.

September is start over month.

But I digress.

Paisley's birthday party was a smashing success! The heat index got incredibly high and the wind got blow your skirt up silly, which caused us to reconsider eating outside in our yard as per our plan. A plan, we had a plan! My type-A-list-making-planner personality got admittedly flustered for a good ten minutes or so, but once we made the decision to yes! Let's move everything in! And use the piano bench for extra seating! it all went swimmingly.

Baby girl received lots of wonderful gifts and ate lots of delicious food but most importantly, had lots of people around her who love her a whole lot.

Seriously, they all really love this girl.

And I can totally see why.

So without further ado, here are the pics! I'll give you a hint, the one of her face while she very seriously awaits her birthday cake is the best one.

Tuesday, September 3, 2013

33 & 34/52

Oh but how behind I am on blogging! The past two weeks have been filled with birthday parties and cleaning and planning and guests and trips to the zoo and cat festivals and to do lists and sleepovers and vacations and the exhaustion that ensues after you get back from vacation (that builds on the previous exhaustion from all the other things that happened directly before the vacation).

But what a grand couple of weeks they have been!

And now we are in recovery mode. I'm slowly catching up on laundry as the hubs and I watch The Hobbit.

So tense!

So dramatic!

Who do you like better, Gandalf or Dumbledore? I think I'm more of a Gandalf gal myself although I can't quite think of why. The hubs votes for Dumbledore because he teaches kids.

Which I guess is as good a reason as any.

Well here are some pictures of our kid! One from her birthday party and one from our vacation. Both of which I plan to blog about, hopefully in the near future.

And that's all I have to say about that! I have to go to bed now.