Friday, August 30, 2013


Jacket, that is.

Although, technically I was in the United States Navy when I was 17, but then my parents decided they weren't comfortable with it, and pulled me out before I turned 18 and was shipped away to boot camp. Every once in awhile I think about what my life would have been like if I had gone on to do nuclear engineering for the military.  I'm gonna go out on a limb here and say a lot different.

Anyway, a military jacket is my one fall item that I really wanted.  I found mine at Kohls.  And then I found this website, where the clever lady posted 12 different ways to use your military jacket.  Like this.

Don't you love Pinterest for all the inspiration you get when you have no idea how to dress yourself?  I do.

Seriously, go to J's Everyday Fashion.  She has as amazing ability to pull outfits together.  At the top of her blog is a link where she has several albums of outfits she has worn all laid out for you to grab some inspiration from.  Love it.

Thursday, August 29, 2013

Living Etc.

It's been a CRAZY week.  The kiddos have been getting up at 5:30 to start their day, it's been 90 degrees all day every day, last minute school shopping and open houses where locker combinations are causing a few hidden tears.  It all culminates in a wedding on Saturday and a baptism on Sunday.  Geesh.

Anyway, I have been a terrible blogger, and that will be the case the rest of the week.  

But, I am not totally terrible because I have found a magazine that I will let you know about that sort of takes the place of my beloved Domino that I have been missing for about the past 5 years or how ever long they have stopped making it.

It's called Living Etc.  It's a British house magazine, and I am loving it.  Let me warn you, it costs like $10 US dollars per copy, a big ouch.  Not cheap, not at all, but worth it.  And to be truthful, I am not quite sure where you can get it.  My podunk little town had it at our grocery store.  Probably one of the biggest surprises that I have had for awhile.  Perhaps a Barnes and Noble or other large bookseller?  Or maybe just check at your local food store.  

I like it because it is fairly eclectic and they always have homes where I know I can copy it for much cheaper.  It is a tad annoying if you find something you love because a. It's almost always from a British store, and b. you think it's a great price until you realize the price is in pounds which means in US dollars it will cost quite a bit more.  But for inspiration, this has been helping my Domino broken heart.  

Living space | South London home | House tour | PHOTO GALLERY | Livingetc |

Bring in a contemporary twist | Country bedroom ideas - 10 of the best | Bedroom | PHOTO GALLERY | Country Homes and Interiors | Housetohome

Living room | London family home | House tour | PHOTO GALLERY | Livingetc |

Tuesday, August 27, 2013

I am so glad that school is happening in T minus 7 days.  Cause this momma needs a humongous break from the kids.  In honor of all moms who are excited for this even if we pretend to others that we aren't, here's a fun list of dreamy spots to visit one day when the kids all fly the next.

1. Istanbul, Turkey

Istanbul, Turkey. It was a mix of Europe and Middle East. Food was amazing!      Spice World! Istanbul's Spice Market

2.  Italy, pick your city

#Cinq #Terres #Italy #BrendaDellaCasa is the Managing Editor of I Am Staggered USA, LLC, The Director of Online Content for #PrestonBailey and the Author of #Cinderella Was a #Liar and #Walking #Barefoot @Brenda Della Casa     We'll have to see this, of course

3.  Tanzania, Africa

Elephant - Tarangire National Park, Tanzania      Tanzania - can't wait to visit Rachel in 2014!

4.  Greece

Mykonos, Greece  #holidayingreece #seemore #rentalcar #carbooker #rentalcarcomparers     Greece: yep this is real!  Awesome sunset!  Go to or just click on photo for home videos and much more on sites like this.

I am just assuming that Heaven will have the best of the world's land for us to enjoy seeing as there is no way I will be able to afford to go to all of the places I want!

Saturday, August 24, 2013

Single Parenting Is Driving Me Crazy!

Okay, just to make it all clear, I am not actually single.  Chris and I are still hitched.  But he's up in the Boundary Water Canoe Area Wilderness with Ava, and so for the last 4 days I am running the house solo.  And I am pathetic.  Like this,

Cute Facebook Friendship Quotes  Funny Friendship Quotes  Facebook

Running the house is clearly a misnomer.  Basically, I am trying to just stay alive.  90 degree heat, so outside isn't a great option.  Biting young dog inside driving me crazy and trying to eat everything.  4 kids telling me that they are "hunry"  all the time...  We've eaten fast food three times in 4 days and would have done it today but I had such mom guilt that instead of feeding them fast food, they whined through Walmart as I desperately tried to grab everything I could for real food at the height of their hunger.  I seriously walked with my hand over Moyz's mouth to prevent him from yelling and whimpering and drawing the eye of every person in the store.

Then we proceeded homeward, where they all fell asleep in the car, pretty much guaranteeing no real nap and no moment of peace for me later.  Sigh.  If I had to be a single mom for real, I don't know how I would survive it.

We watched three movies today.  Burn those brain cells.  And I fully plan on putting them all to bed at 6:30.  You know, practicing for the school routine and all that.

And tomorrow, tomorrow praise Jesus, is my last day solo parenting.  We have church at the lake for our summer baptisms, most excellent timing if I do say so myself, and a huge picnic, and I fully plan to spend the rest of the day there killing time and not messing up my house which I will hopefully clean tonight after the kids are in bed.  So that way Chris thinks I at least did something while he was gone.

Thursday, August 22, 2013

Disgusting or Good?

I found a recipe this morning whilst browsing the computer.  It reminds me so much of fall, can I continue with the fact that our predicted two week forecast has us at or near 90 every day?  Sigh.  Anyway, I give you Chipotle Pumpkin Barley Soup with Chicken.  From the fantastic blog Life In Grace.  I can't make up my mind if it sounds totally amazing, or totally not.

{{Chipotle Pumpkin Barley Soup} with chicken
  • 2 T butter and 2 T. olive oil
  • 1 onion
  • 1 large carrot
  • 3 stalks of celery
  • 3 cloves of garlic
  • 2 boxes of good chicken stock
  • 1 can of pumpkin puree (NOT pumpkin pie mix) the smaller sized can ~14 oz
  • 3 c. cooked chicken or 3 c. diced potatoes for a vegetarian option (could also use frozen hash browns)
  • 1/2 c barley
  • 1/2 t. cinnamon
  • 1/4 t. ginger
  • 1/4 t nutmeg
  • 2-3 T honey
  • 1-2 t. chipotles chopped very fine (it comes in a small can in the mexican section of the store and is packed in a heavy sauce)—it has a lot of heat so be cautious.
  • 1 c. sour cream or greek yogurt
  • 1/4 c. heavy cream
  • salt and pepper to taste
  1. To begin, saute the veggies in the oil and butter until carrots are almost tender.
  2. Always salt as you go along and then adjust the salt at the end.
  3. Don’t wait til the very end to add salt or your dish will lack a depth of flavor.
  4. Add garlic after the veggies have cooked about 5 minutes.
  5. Then add chicken stock, pumpkin, chicken, barley and all the spices.
  6. Cook at medium to high heat for about 45 minutes to an hour or until barley is tender.
  7. Turn heat down to simmer. Add sour cream or yogurt and whisk so that no lumps remain and then add cream.
  8. Taste and reseason. I had to add more honey to balance the heat of the chipotles but DON’T leave out the chipotles. The smokey flavor makes the soup. It just wouldn’t be the same without them! Enjoy!

I will be making this the first day the weather hits in the 50's.  

Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Dog Days....

It's like 90 degrees here all week.  (I have no idea where the degree symbol is on my computer so I always have to type the word, much to my annoyance.)

I have been ready for fall since the end of July.  Why, oh why, cannot I not just be happy with the season I am currently experiencing?  But fall is my most favorite time of the year, and it is so tantalizing close.  So in hopes of cooler weather, I have some Pinterest inspiration for you.

fall outfit by alohamae50's
I love everything here with the exception of the orange nail polish, and I am not crazy about the necklace.

I have a thing for puffer vests.  Love the way they look, but I just can't seem to find the right one.  This makes me want to go for a walk in the mountains.

Cute fall outfits leggings, cardigan and boots
This isn't me (but I wouldn't mind if it was!), but the outfit on the other hand looks like it was plucked directly from my closets.  Stripes, check.  Cardigan, check.  Chunky necklace, check.  This is probably the closest thing to my daily wardrobe.

I love almost everything on here.  The one exception being the prairie skirt on the lower left.  No way. Otherwise, I am all over these.  All fall long.

Dear Lord, please let it cool down soon so I can wear sweaters, and riding boots, and eat soup.  Amen.

Monday, August 19, 2013

Down On The Farm

We were up on the farm for 5 days, and so like myself, I only took pictures on the very last day we were there.  

What can we do inside this barn?

Frontal of a peacock, they lose their feathers every August and grow new ones the next year.

Of course they would climb up the walls of a barn.

Loving the wide spaces to roam

Cute girl on a tractor

Never will they all look at the camera at the same time.

My nephew has named two cows "Jessica" in honor (?) of me.  These aren't them, but I think it's quite funny.

I think he's contemplating jumping down.

Harder then it looks to get 5 kids to climb a fence and then not look at you.

Thursday, August 15, 2013

Facebook Feelings

The kids and I went up to my parents because Chris has been crazy busy at work, and I need some help to keep my sanity instead of all the solo parenting I've done lately.

So off to the farm we went.  Hopefully I will have some pictures, but just imagine tons of tree climbing, chicken and peacock chasing, garden eating and all around running around outside until you drop.

So, since I am being a tad lazy, I'm copping out of blogging by posting the link to this article, which basically tells you what you probably already knew- use of Facebook makes you feel less satisfied with life.  Who knew.  Just kidding, I totally knew.  That's why I rank totally in the anti-facebook group.  Of course my daughter tells me that "all her friends have accounts".  To which I reply well, you won't so you might as well get used to it!  Ah, the drama of being the "only" one out of your group who doesn't get facebook, or a cell phone....

Facebook drama jajajajajajaaja
Man, I loved that show.

Tuesday, August 13, 2013

Fallen Princesses

I came across a mention of Dina Goldstein's work earlier this week.

The series is called Fallen Princesses, and when you look at them, it certainly makes you think.  I don't know if it's because we are so emotionally attached to the princesses we saw when we were little, or if it's because perhaps we relate too much to some of the concepts portrayed on them now.  Here's a few below but check them all out here.

Happily Never After --Dina Goldstein

Dina Goldstein's {Fallen Princesses} Photo series

Dina Goldstein's Fallen Princesses

What are your thoughts?

Monday, August 12, 2013

Daddy's Rules For Dating My Daughter

Chris got this from a friend, it's long, but hilarious.  I know she's only 10, but I swear, time is going by so fast she will be dating before I know it.

Daddy's Rules for Dating

Rule One:
If you pull into my driveway and honk, you'd better be delivering a package, because you're sure not picking anything up.
Rule Two:
You do not touch my daughter in front of me. You may glance at her, so long as you do not peer at anything below her neck. If you cannot keep your eyes or hands off of my daughter's body, I will remove them.
Rule Three:
I am aware that it is considered fashionable for boys of your age to wear their trousers so loosely that they appear to be falling off their hips. Please don't take this as an insult, but you and all of your friends are complete idiots. Still, I want to be fair and open-minded about this issue, so I propose this compromise: You may come to the door with your underwear showing and your pants ten sizes too big, and I will not object. However, in order to ensure that your clothes do not, in fact come off during the course of your date with my daughter, I will take my electric nail gun and fasten your trousers securely in place to your waist.
Rule Four:
I'm sure you've been told that in today's world, sex without utilizing a 'Barrier method' of some kind can kill you. Let me elaborate, when it comes to sex, I am the barrier, and I will kill you.
Rule Five:
It is usually understood that in order for us to get to know each other, we should talk about sports, politics, and other issues of the day. Please do not do this. The only information I require from you is an indication of when you expect to have my daughter safely back at my house, and the only word I need from you on this subject is: 'early.'
Rule Six:
I have no doubt you are a popular fellow with many opportunities to date other girls. This is fine with me as long as it is okay with my daughter. Otherwise, once you have gone out with my little girl, you will continue to date no one but her until she is finished with you. If you make her cry, I will make you cry.
Rule Seven:
As you stand in my front hallway, waiting for my daughter to appear, and more than an hour goes by, do not sigh and fidget. If you want to be on time for the movie, you should not be dating. My daughter is putting on her makeup, a process than can take longer than painting the Golden Gate Bridge. Instead of just standing there, why don't you do something useful, like changing the oil in my car?
Rule Eight:
The following places are not appropriate for a date with my daughter:
Places where there are beds, sofas, or anything softer than a wooden stool.
Places where there is darkness.
Places where there is dancing, holding hands, or happiness.
Places where the ambient temperature is warm enough to induce my daughter to wear shorts, tank tops, midriff T-shirts, or anything other than overalls, a sweater, and a goose down parka - zipped up to her throat.
Movies with strong romantic or sexual themes are to be avoided; movies which feature chain saws are okay.
Hockey games are okay. Old folks’ homes are better.
Rule Nine:
Do not lie to me. I may appear to be a slow, potbellied, balding, middle-aged, dimwitted has-been. But on issues relating to my daughter, I am the all-knowing, merciless god of your universe. If I ask you where you are going and with whom, you have one chance to tell me the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth. I have a shotgun, a shovel, and five acres behind the house. Do not trifle with me.
Rule Ten:
Be afraid. Be very afraid. It takes very little for me to mistake the sound of your car in the driveway for a chopper coming in over a rice paddy near Hanoi. When my Agent Orange starts acting up, the voices in my head frequently tell me to clean the guns as I wait for you to bring my daughter home. As soon as you pull into the driveway, you should exit the car with both hands in plain sight. Speak the perimeter password, announce in a clear voice that you have brought my daughter home safely and early, then return to your car - there is no need for you to come inside. The camouflaged face at the window is mine.

Friday, August 9, 2013

Why It's Important To Get Your Pap Smear

I recently found out that a girl I went to high school with and played on the tennis team is in the last stages of cervical cancer.  She is only 31.  She did not respond to multiple treatments and is now in hospice in her home.

Her husband recently went on tv in their home state of California to talk about a foundation they started to make women aware of cervical cancer, one of the least thought about cancers in the population.

It is often very treatable, but you must catch it early and the way to do that is to go in for your yearly exam. I know, you don't want to go because you hate going and being in that position and it's uncomfortable and embarrassing and all that jazz.  But please, just do it.  Bite the bullet, make the appointment, and go.

Here is a link to the news interview with her husband, at the end is the foundation information if you would like to contribute or follow Tracy's Caring Bridge page.

... fight cervical cancer

Wednesday, August 7, 2013

I'm Obsessed With

These are all of the totally awesome things that have caught my attention lately.

1.  Crock-Pot® Cook ‘N Carry® 5-Quart Manual French Bull Slow Cooker  2.iced 
3.  The Kensington Satchel4.  Around The World Leather Watch

1.  First of all, are you freakin' kidding me?  A life saving cooking device and colorful chevron?  I don't need another one, but this one is coming home.  I can'  Run, run, run to Target.

2. Coffee with sweetened condensed milk, ice or hot.  I'm not picky.  This one I picked up from Chris' cousin.  (A humongous thank you Molly!)  It's heaven.  I don't have any other words to describe it.  My favorite is probably cold over hot, but I will take it either way.  Apparently it's how the Vietnamese do their coffee.  And also, the Pioneer Woman is all about it.  So it is totally legit.  

3.  The Kensington Satchel from Madewell.  I have watched and clicked on the website to look at this purse since last April.  I may use it as a reward for weight loss.  Otherwise I just cannot justify spending $200 on a bag.  Even if I think it's perfect.  It's actually just sitting permanently in my Madewell checkout account.

4.  This awesome leather watch from Urban Outfitters.  And it's only $34.

Tuesday, August 6, 2013

Running On Empty

Can't seem to get my blogging game together this week.  Yesterday we spent two hours at the vet, one just waiting to be seen.  I had the three littles only and no help because Ava and Owen are at my parents.  And of course the office is small and my children are loud so you can see where that is all heading...  Turns out there was a very sick dog that was basically dying.  So then I felt like a terrible person for complaining in my head about the long wait

Today we have Truitt's two year check up and shots, and then back to the vet again because his ear taping needs to be changed differently but his skin was sensitive and so we had to wait a day.

He's 30 pounds at 11 weeks.  He could have eaten the 8 week baby black lab that we saw.

We got the plumbing moved in the basement, and the water finally went away, and we've done a great job of keeping the babies upstairs so not even one scenario in which the littles ended up in the big dirt hole getting filthy, which in my humble opinion is a huge parenting accomplishment.  

And I totally cheated on my "not buying anything until school starts" and ordered the fabric that I talked about in an earlier post.  And it's just not going to work.  None of them.  The third fabric the yellow tone was really, really strange.  And then the other two I didn't actually order enough to match patterns, and now the blue is sold out.  But I don't think I can bring myself to return the two because they are so strange and awesome.  I am just going to have to find a reason to use them..

Lucky Penny Mural Noon  Lucky Penny Mural Night
             Keeping                                                  Keeping

 Swavelle Mill Creek Merrimack Passion Black

Maybe something like this Anthropologie quilt

Florence Duvet

We'll see, I have lots and lots of spare time right now so I'll just quick whip something up!

Monday, August 5, 2013

Night Terror

I have never experienced a kid having night terrors, until last night.  Truitt woke up screaming "daddy" like we have never heard him scream before.  Chris went rushing in, and I just stayed in bed because usually only one of us goes.

He then called me from the bathroom, Truitt was looking around all crazy like there was someone in the room freaking him out and he had a temp of 101.5.  His whole body was trembling.

We thought the fever threw him into some time of febrile episode, and after I googled info about it this morning it really does sound like that's what happened.  We didn't freak out only because we have a friend who's little boy dealt with febrile stuff for a long time.

And this morning, right as rain.  Poor little kid, it's a tough way to start out something as exciting as your official second birthday.  Oh well, tonight we'll make up for it by eating lots of cake and opening a couple presents.   Nothing we got him will hold a candle to his Sully from Grandma and Grandpa! Although we may score a couple of points with the Monsters University phone we got him...

Friday, August 2, 2013

Ava's Ideas

The girl is going crazy with ideas for her new bedroom.  And for the most part she has a really good eye.  But she can't seem to get the idea of a pink room out of her mind.  Like all pink walls and such.  Which I know she is going to outgrow in about 2 months of middle school.

Her room is going to be tiny, not quite 10X10.  She's thinking something like this.


And I am thinking something like this

.ideas for daughter's room
No source, sorry.

Or maybe this mood board.

Mood board for daughter

I'm all for her self expression, but not at the expense of my wallet and her changing whims.  She kind of has the same problem her mom has- too many ideas and not enough time or moola!

You should have seen her at IKEA earlier this week.  Every time we walked around a corner it was "I want this, no I want that!"  At least we have a few months, until the room will be ready to decorate.  Of course by then, I might be going crazy with all of her plans!

Thursday, August 1, 2013



How did we get here?  And where did my summer go?  Also, when I look at the word August above it seems totally bizarre and spelled wrong.  Ever said a word so many times over and over that it loses all meaning and seems ridiculous?  Me too.