sunflowers

ok, so if you live in the kansas city area, you have probably seen one too many pictures of peeps in the sunflower fields.  but guess what, we did it too.  just look the other way if you’re over it.  the lovely people at grinter farm open their fields to the public when their sunflowers are in bloom, and it’s a wow event. these pictures don’t come close to doing it justice.

i mean, i couldn’t recreate this if i tried.  i don’t even know how this happened – that they’re all looking at the cameraand look happy about it.  img_9131

this is how it usually goes down.  pure joy!img_8922

followed by taking it just. a. step. too. far.  we’re really raising some reserved children.  img_8923

this little one is changing before my very eyes right now.  i swear each day she looks a little older, her jawline a little more defined, her vocabulary a little bigger.  three seems to be a big year at our house.  img_8942

and this one – he’s changing pretty rapidly too.  kindergarten is shaping him already, and it’s mostly good.  ha!  it’s been quite a different vibe without our third amigo during school hours, but we are adjusting.  he is loving it, and is becoming the governor of his school – yelling out names and saying ‘hey!’ to every kid he knows.  it’s pretty awesome to see.  img_8857

well, isn’t he the cutest…except…img_8948

eating dirt was what he did most of the time.   it’s hard being the third kid.  img_8955

 

Posted in see

a few things…

a few very random ramblings…

h&m has home items, say what!?!?!  it’s a small but good collection, and the price point is super affordable.  it leans clean and modern, which is right up my alley, and at these prices, you can afford to change that pillow cover out after your kid gets their chocolate slobber all over it {not that i know from experience}.  i’ve already thrown a few things into my online basket to use as christmas and hostess gifts for the upcoming holiday season.

i have really been feeling the need to change things up around here to cozy things up for fall – i have been known to move things around in our house so much that jared asks if everything is new  {i’d say that’s a successful rearrangement}.  i’m not really into throwing up leaf garlands everywhere {no offense if that’s your thing};  browns and oranges have never been my happy colors.  in search of some inspiration, i’ve been following this fall homes tour, and have pulled some good ideas to use at case de brooner.  it starts with the white buffalo styling co., and each post leads you to a new blog.  i like the eclectic nature of her {wbsc} home, and it’s fun to see how each person interprets fall style.  highly recommend if you’re in a styling rut.

ok, if you’re not watching this is us, i don’t know if we can be friends.  i’m kidding, i’m kidding.  but, it is so. good.  jared and i were bummed when parenthood ended a while back, and i feel like this show has filled that spot for us.  it has heart, and the main characters are in their 36th year, which hits preeeeeeetty close to home.

lastly, my computer has just returned from the computer hospital, where she really needed to go long ago.  i have been pretty terrible about maintenance, and she was getting slowwwwww.  {couldn’t possibly be the 16 jillion pictures i have on here.  whoops.}  anyhow, i was finally able to download about a jillion more pictures from our good camera.  it’s crazy how much these little people have changed in a year – yeah, i said she needed help a long time ago.  i blame just coming out from under a rock after having our third child…again, a year ago.  a little throwback thursday, if you will…

 

img_6823

 

img_6426

 

img_6361

dear hudson

dear hudson,

what a wild ride this year has been. too many ups and downs to count, and today, i’ve been doing a lot of thinking about august 11 last year. i went into labor around 7 in the morning, called my parents because i was pretty sure it was go time and i was already dilated to a 4. i was scared you might come quickly (you didn’t). by the time they got here, i was having hard contractions and knew this had to be your day. i remember being excited, scared, hopeful, and so ready to meet you. i had no idea what our day would hold. that you would be in distress during labor, that your heart rate would keep dropping (along with my blood pressure), that they would have to monitor you very closely, that the words ’emergency c-section’ would be uttered at one point, and i would be so scared. that the NICU team would be called in to be there for your delivery. that when you came out, you would have two collapsed lungs and a broken clavicle and i would only be able to hold you for a few seconds before they took you and gave you oxygen to get you breathing. that they would take you directly to the NICU and we would not hear anything for an hour while they figured out what was going on. that they would drain fluid off of your lungs and have you transported (in what looked like a spaceship) to a hospital downtown with a better-equipped NICU (with daddy following the ambulance). that we did not know what was going to happen to you – you could improve or totally tank in those first few hours. that daddy and I would spend that night in our hospital room without you. that my mom would sit at your bedside all night and watch your labored breathing and listen to the doctors until i could get discharged. that the next morning, when we would see you, you’d be connected to so many wires that it would take a nurse’s help just to hold you. that i wouldn’t be able to nurse you until you were two days old. that we would stay in an old run down hospital room (after joking that our stay would be at the ‘spaspital’ since it would be a break to look after a newborn) just to be closest to you. that I would feel so torn between your needs and those of your siblings. that after all that, we would only be in the hospital one day longer than if you’d come out healthy (miraculous, really). 


it was a rough and scary few days and we are so lucky your tiny body knew what to do to heal itself. 

i wish some one had been able to whisper to me that first night- everything will be OK. because, honestly, we didn’t know that it would be. 

to meet you now, one would never know of your dramatic entrance or your tiny fragile body those first weeks. you are loud and sturdy, physical and happy, soooooo happy. WE are so happy to call you ours. 


you are walking and beginning to talk and you may just be the busiest of the three (which is saying something!). you are ornery and cautious, love cars, bats, balls and the stairs, are a good eater, did I mention busy?  you, beckett, and chloe, have mutual adoration for one another, and i so hope your relationships will only strengthen. it’s been beautiful to watch that bond grow. you are sleeping better, though still not thru the night reliably. last night you were up at 2.30, 4.30, and 5 – teeth?  just wanting to get a jump on the birthday?  and noooowwwww you decide you like a pacifier. what the what?!?

i am savoring your baby qualities, but at the same time, so look forward to seeing who you become. we all love you, hudsy bear. you are the piece that completed this little puzzle. 

7 things i’ve learned in parenting

now i’m no expert in parenting (far from it, in fact!), but i’ve learned a few things in my five short years.

be patient – if your well of patience isn’t deep enough, dig deeper.  sorry, but we’re the adults here. your sanity and your kids happiness depend on it.   our kids are a reflection of us, and on the days my fuse is short, my kids are in crazytown.  on the days i can give more of myself, they’re calm…well, calmer.  it took me a long time to see that.  kids are constantly watching you and listening to what you say about them (even if you don’t think they are).  they will read your emotional health on the daily and reflect it right back at you.

go to bed early – you’ll have more of the aforementioned patience, yahoo!  i know it sucks, it means your evening is gone, your already limited time with your partner gets cut, BUT your fuse will be so much longer the next day.  and even if your kids each get up twice a night, your collective ‘napping’ overnight will add up to something good.  ha!  at the very least, pick three days a week to turn in early, and your body (and your family!) will thank you.

get up early – ok, i don’t do this on the regular, but when i do wake up before everyone else and get just 30 minutes to myself, it sets a tone for my day…a good one. i’m happier, calmer, and feel like i’ve already done something just for me.  read a book, practice yoga, drink coffee in silence, whatever makes you tick.  again, pick a few days each week, and see how it makes you feel.

everything is a phase – good or bad, with kids, it’s all a phase.  seriously.  sleeping, not sleeping, stranger danger, teething, hitting, clinging to your leg, you name it.  we’ve all been there with one or all of these, and just try to remind yourself that ‘this too shall pass’.  it might not seem like it in the moment, but you’ll wake up one day, and your kid won’t be sleeping on your bedroom floor anymore.  i’m looking forward to that day.  ;)

undivided attention – now, some days are just plain cray cray, but try to give each child even just 10 minutes a day where you aren’t distracted by other kids, the dishes, or your phone.  make eye contact, talk, laugh.  maybe it’s early in the morning, while others are napping, or stealing a few minutes at bedtime.  you’ll help fill their ’emotional tank’ for the day.

put a positive spin on things – gosh, my mom taught me this, and it works a lot of the time.  the answer is always ‘yes’, but make it work for you.  it’s 7 am, and your kid asks for candy.  the answer is ‘yes, after lunch!’  can we build a fort?  ‘yes, after you pick up the 40 bajillion toys on the floor!’  can i have a sleepover?  ‘yes, when you’re 7!’  ha!

stop comparing yourself to others – ok, this is waaayyy easier said than done, and something i work on continuously, but quit it.  we each have our gifts (mine is not housekeeping) and that’s ok.

in an ideal world, we would be all these things every day, and that’s something to strive for, but let’s be real.  kids are crazy and they push us to our limits – currently mine are fighting about something stupid and scaling the posters on my bed- and perfection is just not possible.  if you’re like me, we’re living moment to moment and just trying to survive most days, but see if you can work in a few of these things each day and see where it takes you. remember, we are raising men and women.  

life ain’t perfect, but i’m choosing to find the beautiful in everyday.

   
  

   

meet {hudson}

many of you are family and friends and/or follow me on instagram, so this is old news, but we added a new member to our family in august this year, and we are all smitten.  meet hudson.

IMG_6930

he arrived with gusto – meaning he had bilateral pneumos (partially collapsed lungs) and a broken clavicle.  the latter is not uncommon during childbirth, but the pneumos seemed to puzzle everyone – especially the fact that he had them bilaterally.  he spent his first days in the NICU at st. luke’s on the plaza, where he was transferred the evening he was born.  i stayed at the hospital where i delivered him, st. luke’s north, until the next morning, which was excruciating.  he stayed in the hospital just one extra day than he should have, but it seemed like years that we were there, particularly that first day, when we didn’t know what was going to happen.  thankfully, the NICU staff was brilliant, his body took care of itself, and our stay was short.  i had some ‘survivors guilt’ leaving the NICU though.  there are so many babies that will be there for weeks or months.

fast forward four months, and we have a very social guy who loves to be held {i.e. rather needy} – must be a case of FOMO {fear of missing out}.  he’s basically a third child who thinks he is a first born.  he is long and lean {busting out of 6 month footie pj’s}, easy to smile and giggle, and very well loved, but don’t think about putting this kid down for two minutes so you can pee.  ticklish on the chin and chest and loves to have you clap his hands, but again, don’t put him down.  beckett and chloe adore him, sometimes too much, but it’s a good problem to have.

i am so aware of fleeting time with him because i know how quickly these first years go by – in a blur of giggles and crying and sleep {if you’re lucky}!

 

Posted in see

snow day

the first snow of the season.  there’s not much better.  jared’s office even closed so we all got a bonus day of christmas break.  yahoo!!

snow provides the most beautiful light so i had to get out {in my pajamas!} to get a few shots of the kids.

i can’t make any promises {since we’ve added a (very needy) human to our household since i was last here}, but my goal for 2016 is to get back to this space.  see you again soon!!

IMG_7292IMG_7274

IMG_7278

IMG_7273

IMG_7282

Posted in see

life {lately}

whew – it has been so long since i’ve visited this space.  it is really a hectic season of our lives, but in the best way.  the kids are running on all cylinders at. all. times.  if they’re both awake, time to myself is non-existent, and since beckett is no longer napping, that mean’s i’m ‘on’ from 7 in the morning to sometimes 9 at night.  we have the kind of kids who are super-social and want us to play with them all the time, which is awesome – but doesn’t leave much time for anything else.  i’m trying to let them be when they play (nicely) together, or each by themselves, but to be honest, that doesn’t happen very often.  i feel like we’re still in straight-up survival mode.

school started friday for beckett, so i’m looking forward to the structure and routine that it creates.  he goes from 8 -12 on monday, wednesday, and friday, and he really loved it last year, so i’m really hoping he has a similar experience this year.  we did meet-the-teacher last tuesday, and i think he was a little confused why we were in a different room with a different teacher.  i had tried to prep him for it, but he was a bit perplexed.  he seemed to have a great day yesterday, and all he can talk about is how many race cars are in his new classroom, so he’s gonna be just fine.  i just got him signed up for soccer so i’m reeeealllly excited to see how that goes.  i can actually remember my brother playing soccer at this age, and it was basically a herd of kids chasing a ball – i expect the same for beckett’s time this fall.  beckett is in school, signed up for soccer, and is going to be 4 in 10 days.  i mean, seriously, how did this happen?

chloe hit the 18 month milestone on august 1 and is a little chatterbox.  she is picking up new words every day.  she says yes the most clearly, and recently said ‘take a bath’ – her first real phrase.  she is obsessed with dogs of any kind and loves to see them in person (though sometimes she’s a little skittish at first – funny since we have a 95 lb moose that lives with us), in pictures, and drawings.  she is pretty great with animal sounds and identifying different animals in pictures.  she gets particularly excited when she sees a cat, dog or monkey.  she also loves the monkeys at the zoo, and gets super excited if they’re running around.  chloe is basically running around too.  she and beckett love to race, and they’ll line up against our dining chairs, and she’ll say ‘go!’ and take off.  beckett loves to race anything and is trying to turn everything (from running to eating) into a competition .  is this a dude-thing?  i don’t get it.

we are entering a busy few months with three weddings, a family reunion, school activities and soccer, but i hope to visit here a little more often.  it sure feels good to write.

IMG_5323

IMG_5490

IMG_5551

IMG_5555

IMG_5580

IMG_5594

IMG_5629

IMG_5655

IMG_5671

IMG_5804

IMG_5845

IMG_5868

IMG_5934

IMG_5936

IMG_3509

IMG_3554

IMG_3633

IMG_3855

IMG_6052

IMG_3971

IMG_4013

IMG_4066

IMG_4077

IMG_4129

IMG_4133

 

IMG_5972

 

 

IMG_5968

 

 

 

spring {is about to spring}

well, the cold weather here has been peppered with a few gloriously spring-like days lately, and we are so ready for the warmer weather to be an every day occurrence.  i can see the light, and with that, spring clothes!  it’s funny how, in the fall, i can’t wait to get in boots and sweaters, and by march, i’m ready to chuck everything out the window.  anywho, my kids are taking monster naps today – at the same time (can i get a hallelujah!?!), so i had a minute to think about the blogosphere.  and since i’m thinking spring, i thought i’d put together a few outfit ideas for the coming weeks.  now, keep in mind that i’m a full-time mama, and i’m not getting dressed for work each day.  but, i do like to try and put my best foot forward when i can…and have the time.  my mom has the best term that i’ve adopted too – i’d say these looks fit into the ‘casually darling’ realm.  and i must say, i’ve become a little predictable lately with my formula.  i think it helps me get ready faster though – easy top, denim, neutral shoe, statement necklace.  go.

IMG_2911

IMG_2921

IMG_2919

IMG_2913

 

 

Posted in see

new art {in the dining room}

so, months ago, my sweet and amazingly artistic friend, becky, came to my house.  did i say she was amazingly talented?  because, really, that’s a gross understatement.  anyway, on her way out, she suggested that my dining room needed a huge black and white piece of art.  bam!  i had been thinking the exact same thing, so i knew the idea was a ‘go’.  the wall is big, and it needed something big – like 4ft x 5 ft big – and i knew i wanted to try to do it myself.  having made the decision to do a black and white piece, i was then paralyzed in choosing what i wanted…for weeks.  i did lots of searching for pieces i liked and thought were do-able, but came up with nothing i was really wowed by.  a few weeks later, becky sent me this, and basically said, ‘do it’.  it was the perfect piece just the push i needed.

IMG_4436

so, with a little coaching, i did it….

IMG_2479

IMG_2484

i mean, i know it’s not perfect, and i still might go back and touch it up, but it’s exactly what the room needed – a bit of edge to contrast the feminine chandelier – and it makes for a pretty bold entrance into our home.  it’s the first thing you see.  whammo.

dear {chloe}

dear chloe –

it was this day, febuary first one year ago, that you were laid into my arms.  a few days overdue, you had to be evicted.  i was induced  on a friday morning.  we got there at 7, they got the pitocin running at about 8, and at 11.44 you were here.  it was pretty fast, and fairly easy (i say that now, as a year has passed), and our lives would never ever be the same.  if i had to think of one word for you, it would be joy.  you radiate it.

IMG_2490

you are literally a ray of sunshine, sweet child.  you’ve got a smile for anyone who asks for it (except for picture-taking), and your eyes shine all the time.  you have the happiest little soul in your teeny body, and i know an amazing woman will grow out of it.  you are smart, strong, persistent, joyful, easy-going, and sweet as can be.  i did some ugly crying last night over you turning one – not because i don’t want to see you grow up, just because it feels like it’s going much too fast.  i’d like to freeze time for a while. right. now.  i am truly in awe of how much can happen in a year – you’ve gone from squishy newborn to a little person in what seems like no time at all.  i’m so excited to see what the next year will bring and who you will be 12 months from today.

love you, sweet girl.

– mama

IMG_2503

 

IMG_2493

 

IMG_2495

 

p.s.  parents of small children.  do yourself a favor and blow up some balloons this weekend.  they have entertained us for hours the last few days!