Saturday, February 26, 2011

The H & H Weekly #4

I wish you could hear how this one says “W,”  it’s the best ever.

Someone started smiling this week.  Melt my heart.

Thursday, February 24, 2011

this little girl

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my daughter. my second child. my sugar plum. my sweet little lady.   my cute, noisy, little piggy.  my little h.
she’s one month old today. 
it’s been a wonderful and exhausting month.
she’s a cuddler, a big eater, a noisy, but good sleeper, and umm, rather fussy good at making sure you know she’s not happy.
i love her.

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Monday, February 21, 2011

dear kindle & my ranting's on winter

Yesterday, I bundled up and walked 1000 feet to one of my favorite destinations, in the swirling snow and howling wind. I wore my pink rain boots, because  I have no winter boots, since I have refused to participate in winter and the reality that it is still present.  I mean, Minnesota, for the love of all that is sane and holy, why is it still winter and where in the world does all this snow come from and why in all of creation do people live here?  Why do I live here? I miss California. I miss Florida. I miss Tennessee. I miss everywhere there is warmth and green grass and leaves on the trees and my flip-flops. Do you know how much I hate wearing socks?
Oh, did I mention, we had another snow storm yesterday, like 10 more inches.  Minnesota is so dramatic with it’s winter weather drama. 
Now that you know how I feel about winter, let’s return to my story.  Yesterday, I walked to my local Starbucks.  Once upon a time, there was a beautiful lake next to the Starbucks, but all that remains is ice and snow and people who drive their cars onto the ice and sit in little buildings, fishing… in the cold… and they call this fun.  Something else I will never understand. I mean, I get the other kind of fishing, not so much the ice.  I only like ice in my ice cream and sweet tea.  Hmm, sweet tea.
I promise this post has something to do with a Kindle, and here’s how.  I finally got a Kindle, as in I’ve wanted one since the beginning of creation… sure, they weren’t exactly around then, neither was I, but deep down, I also knew I would want one.  Thanks to my amazing  husband, the only material thing that I want now is a mini cooper.
And I love it. I really, really do.  I also made that little case for it, because I looked online and thought, 1. those are all ugly. 2. I could make my own.  So, a little fabric and batting later, done.   Doesn’t it match the color scheme of my latte and cupcake box perfectly, it’s like it was meant to be. 
And that is probably because I was made for coffee shops.  Can I just say, how much I miss leisurely outings, sitting in the over-sized cozy chairs, the sounds of the espresso machines and the hissing of the steaming milk, the random bits of conversations,  and the delectable scent of coffee wafting through the air.  This is my comfort zone.
Anyways, it was magical and so is my new Kindle.
I must say that as a lover of the printed word, the smell of old paper, and the feel of a perfect book in my hands, I don’t think that books should ever be completely replaced by electronic readers, but I think that if you are an avid reader, you can enjoy books this way too, because it’s awesome.
What about you friends, do you have strong feelings on this subject or just strong affection for your e-readers?

Friday, February 18, 2011

The H & H Weekly #3

Here’s your weekly dose of those sneaky little things, who are very good at making demands and requiring all of your time and energy.  Good thing I like them.


look at those blue eyes.


  This one probably needs a proper  haircut, but it’s very Jude from Across the Universe and you know I love that.

Every time my mom comes over, she wants to brush his hair, part it smoothly, and tuck it behind his ears, which is something that she has been trying to do to me for my whole life.  Instantly, I give it a little toss and mess it back up.

because, we don’t brush our hair… we’re rock stars.

Thursday, February 17, 2011

on brothers and sisters, boys and girls

Here’s the thing, I’ve always known that I wanted to be a mom.  The first time, I desperately wanted to have a little boy, I really did.  I never admitted that, because I didn’t want to be one of those parents, who for even a second wasn’t happy at the news of their child’s gender.  Would I have adored a little girl? YES… but did I very much want a son?  Oui.    It’s probably because I have a big brother and I think they are important, even though mine has spent half of his life with his face in a book and I had to teach him how to talk to girls.  He’s pretty great.  So, I was delighted to receive the news on that day that we were having a little boy.  He changed my life and no one could ever replace him.

Just as much as I wanted to have a boy, I desperately hoped I wouldn’t be one of those people who had 6 boys before finally giving birth to a sweet baby girl.  Oh brother, (pun intended).   I have always wanted a little girl too, kind of like I always wanted a sister.  When I was four, I used to make my poor, younger, tortured brother wear my dresses and play dolls with me.  We also  played cowboys &  Indians with him and give him highly unfair rules.  For example, if we shot him with our gun, he died, but if he shot us, his bullets wouldn’t kill us.  Pretty much he always lost.  We always won. The end. He cried to mom, what a baby.  Being the third child must have been tough.  When the fourth child was born in my family and my parents called from the hospital announcing that I now had three brothers, I locked my five year old self in my room and cried. True story.  I didn’t even want to see him when they came home. Don’t worry, 20 years later, I’m over it. I think he is too.  So, I prayed and prayed and prayed and prayed and God made my parents have another child (because of my prayers), and at last, a sister for me!

Happily,  I didn’t have to have six boys before having a baby girl.  This little lady has been in my arms for three weeks now and I’m just mad about her, I mean, head over heels. It’s rather difficult to find the words.  And before you start to feel sorry for my shaggy-headed train-loving two-year-old, it’s not that I love her more, it’s just different.  I’ve been working on the words for the past few weeks and I think I finally figured it out.

When you have your first child, it’s all new and exciting and you really have absolutely no idea what you are getting yourself into.  Instantly, your heart turns to mush and that squishy bundle changes your life.  You watch them grow and get excited about rolling over, crawling, first words, sleep, and hearing them say, “mama”. 

The second time around, you might think it’s less magical, because you sort of know what to expect, but it’s the complete opposite.   All of a sudden, that baby is in your arms and you can’t for the life of you believe that you have the capacity for such love again.  I mean, those moments, those first seconds, they sweep you off your feet, feeling vaguely familiar but altogether brand new.   Strangely enough, even though you’ve been preparing for their arrival, you never saw this coming.  You can’t imagine loving another child like you do your first, but instantly,  it’s like you’ve always loved this one too.   How amazing that it this is possible, that it is actually real, another perfect little baby, your baby, and you get to keep this one too. 

But this time, you have the wisdom to know that all too soon this little one will be climbing on the coffee table and jumping onto the couch (not that anyone in this home does such wild things, no never…) and refusing naps and asking to watch Cars AGAIN.  So, you squeeze them a little tighter and cuddle them a bit longer.

And you are very aware that little miss three weeks is already looking older than she should.

And you get annoyed at how other people ALWAYS say, “They grow up so fast, enjoy each moment.” 

But really,  it’s too fast, way too fast, however, you didn’t hear that from me, because I would never say that.

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

four things + three weeks


1. Little lovie is three weeks old, yesterday. Go ahead and enjoy her sweetness.

2. I made this delicious sweet chocolate + coconut granola yesterday, you might love it.  (Image via Living the Swell Life)

3. My friend Jessica, from A Little Gray won the Prudent Baby Sewing Machine contest.  She gets this killer new machine and all these people will tell her how talented and creative she is, which of course, she is. (Image from A Little Gray)


4. Couldn’t show you until now, but last night, I made these homemade chocolate peanut-butter cups for my chocolate/peanut butter loving husband. I may have had a few myself.  They are a little time consuming, but totally worth it.

Any good recipes to share? Any fun news?

Monday, February 14, 2011

yesterday is for lovers.

Apparently, it’s Valentines Day, which is cute, but there is no way I’m celebrating today, not at all.  Not because I’m one of those anti-commercialized holiday rebels, it has more to do with the fact that today my valentine will celebrate our love, but being the bread-winner, bringing home the bacon, if you will… a.k.a., he works both jobs today.  By the time, he gets home, my little eyes will barely be able to stay open.  Don’t feel bad, because truthfully, nothing says I love you, like working really long hours when you’re so tired, because you have two jobs, a two year old, and a newborn, and you have to get up early to catch the bus, because you still don’t have car… but you don’t complain and you do it all willingly for your wife and your family.  Now that’s love, real, everyday, committed love.

Oh and also, we went out yesterday.FxCam_1297627964852

Let me tell you about yesterday.  It was 48 degrees.  The sun was shining.  I saw two blades of mostly green grass.   I left the house with my husband, not a child in sight, not even one. I even took the smallest purse I had, no diaper bag needed.  Furthermore,  my completely un-swollen feet fit into my cute boots again for the first time since December and my coat buttoned, as in all the way, with ease.   These are all really great things.

We perused a few stores,  held hands, enjoyed a leisurely lunch, and then did some super romantic grocery shopping, oh la la.   It was pretty terrific, because we like each other and we’re in love.

Hope you feel loved today.

Can we talk Grammy's?

I'm a fan of the Grammy's.  Most of the time I just like making fun of the crazies, because you know that place is packed full of them, like Gaga.  Don't. Get. Me. Started.    And then there's that Crazy Katy Perry and some little boy that everyone loves, who is an obvious lyrical genius, "Up Up Up Up. Never say never or something like that." Whatever. Oh, there was also some strange peacock man with puppets, and we all know how much I HATE puppets. But I do love Gwyneth.

But, goodness all of that is just so entertaining, this cannot be denied.

And sometimes, mixed in with that garbage on the charts and such, can you tell I'm a big fan of the radio, right... anyways, sometimes you get some great performances and artists who possess actual talent win awards, and that's pretty cool.

Anyways, before we continue, you must know how much I love Bob Dylan.  It's a lot.  We can talk about that later.  So, you can imagine, just how much I loved, LOVED, loved, the trio that was Mumford & Sons, The Avett Brothers, and Mr. Bob Dylan himself.  Dear person who decided to put this on the show, thank you.

What, you need to see the video? Of course, you do. Watch.

Also, I loved the little tribute to Dolly Parton by these three.  Who doesn't love Dolly?  Loving Norah's hair, don't be shocked if I take a picture of this to the salon soon...


  • I think that I'm a new fan of Lady Antebellum, although I'm not so into country music.
  • I was totally blown away that Arcade Fire won Album of the Year, and rightly so, I mean, The Suburbs was basically our summer soundtrack.  It's just that this sort of thing usually doesn't happen on the Grammy's.
  • And please don't tell anyone, but I sorta, maybe, just a little like Rhianna's voice.  Shhh... This could ruin me if anyone found out.
So, that's what I thought about the Grammy's.  Most of all, I just wanted an excuse to watch that video over and over and over again, because I just really, really like  Bob, the Sons, and the Brothers.   These are all just my opinions and you can totally disagree if you want. 

And now I stop being a music/award show critic and work on another post about Valentines Day or something.

Friday, February 11, 2011

a little gift

Earlier this week, we had a wonderful, little visit from the lovely Jessica of Living the Swell Life.   She came bearing gifts of all sorts, something tasty for dinner, some fantastic granola that I have fallen in love with, and thoughtful gifts for my babies.   
I just had to share a few pictures of the dress she made for our little lady, isn’t it the cutest, summery dress?
Today happens to be Jessica’s birthday, so don’t hesitate to stop by her blog and send her a little birthday greeting!   Happy Birthday Jessica!
Have a wonderful weekend, friends.

Thursday, February 10, 2011

The H & H Weekly #2

This one is a big fan of being in the mei tai, because she gets to be snuggled up to mommy.  Double bonus for me: having her near and free hands.
This one is all about cars + trains.  He has quite the collection of hot wheels and always knows when one car is missing.  Let me tell you, the search for a missing car is no joke.

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

on all matters favorite things

what is better than raindrops on roses and whiskers on kittens?

a nap, a shower, and a large mug of coffee.

and this afternoon, a certain mama got all three, thanks to two sleeping babes.

good story, huh?

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

one of my favorite thoughts on God + motherhood + babies + life

“And when my friends Paul and Danielle had their second daughter, I went to the hospital and held her in my arms.  She was tiny and warm like a hairless cat, and she was dependent.  When I looked over at her mother, Danielle’s eyes told me life was about more than sunsets and romance.  It was as though having a baby made all the fairy tales come true for her, as though she were a painter who discovered a color all new to the world.
I can imagine what kind of conversation God and Danielle will have, how she’ll sit and tell God the favorite parts of the story he gave her.  You get a feeling when you look back on life that that’s all God really wants from us, to live inside a body he made and enjoy the story and bond with us through the experience.”
-A Million Miles in a Thousand Years, Donald Miller
p.s.  read this book.  you’ll be happy you did.

Monday, February 7, 2011

two weeks

This lovely is two weeks old today.  She’s an absolute dream.  Yesterday, we had a little photo shoot for her birth announcement, which I envisioned months ago.  She was perfectly happy and cooperative and I must say, they turned out just as I hoped.  The photo above is from part two of the shoot, because I scheme up crazy things in my head and thankfully the rest of the family humored me, mostly… although H didn’t think he could stand another minute of watching from his high chair, but I think he’s over it.
Two weeks into this adventure, I bet you’re dying to know my thoughts on being a mama of two.  Here goes:
Tired. So Tired. The other day I took the kettle full of boiling water meant for the French Press and started pouring it  into my cereal bowl, turning my whole milk + frosted mini wheat's into warm cereal in skim milk.   You wouldn’t believe the amount of diapers I’ve changed, unless you have actually have two kids, then you’d know.  I’m thinking moms should earn airline miles for all the diapers they change.  Hello, free trip to Paris. And the house… well, it’s experiencing neglect like never before, good thing homes don’t have feelings. 
My love for coffee has reached all new heights, as if that was possible, but whatever, we’re best friends.  Yesterday morning, I held my steaming mug in my hands and said, “coooffeeee,” sort of like a zombie, but probably more like an addict, I don’t know. Matt laughed at me.   I’m pretty sure this is the hardest thing I’ve ever done and if I ever thought that just having just one was hard work, mercy, mercy, mercy.  At times I think, yes, I’ve got this.  I can totally handle this… and then there are times when I think, “I want my mommy.” 
HOWEVER, there is this…
And half of the times that H usually says, “Hi,” throughout the day (which is a very large number) has been replaced with “baby,” and that’s pretty cute.  And he doesn’t want to go to sleep without saying good night to her.  And he loves to lie down next to her and hold her hand.  And goodness, she’s the most beautiful thing I’ve ever seen.
… but I couldn’t imagine life without them,
So, I will keep them, change more diapers, sleep less,  drink more coffee, and in all my exhaustion… be very very happy.

Thursday, February 3, 2011


Do you ever feel excessively rich?  And I don’t mean the kind that has anything to do with your bank account or being surrounded by a life of luxury… I mean, that beautiful feeling of being so abundantly blessed that the gratitude is practically oozing out of the cracks.

Sure, I may have an ugly couch covered by aslightly less ugly slipcover and that pile of dishes is still waiting to be cleaned.    I may still be longing for that sense of community that we hope to find in our new town.  I may not leave the house very often, due in part to the fact that we haven’t had a car for over a month now.  And I may be tired always, thanks to that amazing new baby of mine.  And some days that pile of bills can seem extra frustrating.  And those days when the husband works both jobs can feel longer than anything… ever.  And, it may still be winter for the 15th month in a row… but what is all of that?

It is meaningless, trivial bits of nonsense that can sometimes get in the way of seeing the beauty, like a thick mass of fog lingering between you and the most glorious views.

The past few days, we’ve felt this incredible sense of peace and contentment, taking in the blessings too numerous to count… knowing that our needs will be met and our God has a plan.  The days of being carless are becoming slightly annoying, but we are confident in the timing.  The other day I asked Matt what the whole point of this was, being that we’ve been praying for a new car for a few years.  He quickly responded with, “It’s a progress report.”  To which, I said… “What?”  “The fact that we’ve been able to go without a car for this long, that fact that we are not questioning if God will provide a way for a new car, whether it’s how we think or something unimaginable, we just know He will. It’s a progress report.” 

I thought that was a pretty good answer.

I’m thankful for the struggles that have brought me to this point, when instead of worrying, we can trust and remain confident in our provider.  I’m thankful that we don’t find our value in things, mere object of little worth.  I’m overwhelmed at the richness of this life:  being blessed with a wonderful, hardworking, loving husband, two delightful, amazing kids, dreams, creativity,  comfort, warmth, safety, a peaceful, happy home, friends and family, coffee,  and a God who is bigger and greater than any trouble that my come our way.

Personally, I’ll take this kind of rich any day.

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

the reveal

Remember the fabric dilemma for Harper’s bedding?  Remember when I chose the fabric that “delighted my artistic soul?” Remember the sneak peeks?  Remember when I had the cutest baby girl in the world?

Alright, enough remembering.  You want pictures.   Cue pictures.


{the quilt}




{the whole deal}


I was fortunate to find some cute models already in their pajamas (or rather still in their pajamas at 11am) hanging around me to show off the finished product…

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and then… Harper’s stuffed friends joined in the fun.


sweet bedding for my little lady.

I should note that technically it is not finished, as I haven’t added the ties to the bumper, I still don’t know what to use, so if you have any ideas please send them my way.   I haven’t closed off the sides of the bumpers, in case I need to pull out the pads to sew on the ties. Once I do this, then it will really be done.  I think I’m opting out of a crib skirt for now, since I don’t store things underneath, but I can always make one later.  Technically, she won’t sleep in this crib for a while, since she’s our roommate for the next six months… and it’s still being used by the original owner as a toddler bed.

Total cost of fabric, quilt batting, bumper pads:  $90

Actual time sewing: less than 10 hours

Biggest challenges: Finalizing the design

Biggest frustration:  Measuring and cutting the strip for bumper.

(I’m not into numbers and measuring)

Worth it or not: Absolutely yes.

So, if you’ve questioned whether or not you should make your own bedding, I’d say yes.  I love that I have just the fabrics and design I wanted. I love that it’s completely one of a kind.  I also love that I made it and spent much less than I would on something generic from the store. 

Sometimes, I start scheming up other designs too… but I’m not sure this is my new creative endeavor, besides, I’m a little busy these days.