Thursday, October 31

::right now::

Happy Halloween, friends! I am a day late here, but here I am.  I had a feverish, teary little girl with me yesterday.  So sad.  My heart breaks every time my kids are sick.  They're such different little people and they handle being sick so differently, but they both break my heart in their own way.  My mind is a bit scrambled's here and there and everywhere, but right now I am...

:: listening to Andy Stanley as a podcast...I am addicted to his messages

 :: planning to (and a bit excited to) dress up in an actual costume (of sorts) for Halloween for the first time in...forever

:: excited to read all of these good books that have arrived in my mailbox and via the hands of friends this week

:: listing the groceries I need to buy this's a long list!

:: thankful that my little people are healthy enough to attend tonight's festivities

:: grateful for the little moments in which I find my strength and purpose

:: looking forward to a month of gratitude--as an adult, Thanksgiving has become one of my favorite holidays!

.   .   .   .   .   .   .   .   .   .   .

This morning I ran a little errand and then I just kept right on walking.  I ended up in this little spot, one of my favorite spots here in Whittier, along the banks of Whittier Creek.  It was lightly sprinkling and right here the rushing water is so loud it drowns out nearly everything was just what I needed after a day yesterday of such emotional exhaustion.

One last thing...this jumped out at me this morning as I was reading...maybe someone else out there needs this verse today, too...

source via Pinterest

Monday, October 28

The Weekend

Man oh man! We've had a tough run of weekends around here this past month or so. I have blamed a lot of things as we've gone along and it's probably a little bit of all of them with a few more things I haven't thought about all tossed in together. The bottom line is that the girls are growing and changing and that process isn't always smooth! Weekends have become a whine-fuss-fight-fest of late. Obviously they've had their up moments too, but Saturday nights and Sunday nights Scott and I have been wiped out, reminiscent of the toddler days. Finally things improved this weekend. Life is all about rhythm, and (fingers crossed, hopeful hearts) maybe we are finally finding our weekend rhythm. Saturday we got to play on the school's brand new playground! Ours was damaged two years ago in our record snowfall and construction is just wrapping up on our new play structure and equipment. It was lots of fun to be playing again!

Saturday night we headed over to the Conservation Center for their Halloween Party.   What fun!  They had booths where you could learn about various animals, play a game, do an activity and earn a treat.  Very well organized and fun for everyone!  Here are my two in their costumes...

The party was held in the barn at the Conservation Center which is perfect...except for it's hard to take decent pictures in there.  Especially when it's a bit dark to add to the Halloween ambiance!

Here's one other thing we did this weekend...homemade Cheez-its.  I can't remember where I found the recipe we tried, but they were sure tasty!  Way better than real ones, that's for sure.  Unfortunately the kids didn't like them as much as Scott and I did.  They weren't real I guess we'll just keep trying!  It was fun, nonetheless!

Friday, October 25

{this moment}

{this moment} - A weekly ritual. A single photo - no words - capturing a moment from the week. A simple, special, extraordinary moment. A moment I want to pause, savor and remember.  

Inspired by SouleMama

I am going to break my own rule here and tell you a quick little bit about this picture.  This is Stacy with a boy from her class.  They're at soccer practice doing running drills.  Every time the coach says "go" Stacy sprints to the other end of the gym with the big group of kids.  They all dash back and she waits.  She waits for this guy to get there and then runs back with him.  Dead last.  Every time.  I asked her about it after practice and she simply said, "He doesn't like to be last, so I be last with him." Wow.  Talk about learning a life lesson from a kid!  Proud mama moment.

Wednesday, October 23

Shhhhh! It's a Secret!

Well, this first part isn't a secret!  Continuing on the 'Little House on the Prairie' theme, the girls and I made mob caps last night.  Yesterday the depths of the internet taught me that's what those hats that Mary and Laura slept in are called.  I confirmed my plan with this tutorial and we got to work.  It was a quick project, thanks in part to using my serger to make a rolled hem along the edge.  The girls were pleased, particularly Kelsey!


Kelsey was so pleased she actually slept in hers!

Note to self: sleeping 7 year olds are nearly as cute as sleeping babies!

Now...on to the secret part!  Halloween costumes!  These are alternately a secret and not a secret depending on the girl and the day.  Sometimes they're telling, sometimes they're not!  So...shhhh!  Just in case today is a secret day!

First up, Kelsey the eagle.  If you've ever talked to Kelsey for 3 minutes or more then she's probably talked to you about animals.  She is my little Dr. Doolittle, so this eagle idea came as no surprise to me.  I did some internet browsing and came up with this idea and this idea and got to work.  Considering I made it up as I went along, drafting my own patterns I am very pleased with how it turned out!!  So is my little eagle!

Pardon the poorly lit pictures...getting to be that season in Alaska again!

Next up is my mathematician/engineer girl as a robot.  This costume is still evolving and has already been added to since I took these pictures last night.  Stacy is loving the hands-on nature of crafting this getup!

Kelsey loved having hers done for her just as much as Stacy is loving making her own.  "Mom, what if we add..." is a phrase I'm hearing a lot.  So we add on.  The coolest part about Stacy's is the glow in the dark duct tape.  The Halloween celebration at school this year is a skate party, so our costumes have to be good for roller skating and this glow in the dark is going to be so cool!!  We have some dryer vent tubing for her arms, too.  Stay tuned to see the final product.  We are headed to the Halloween party at the Conservation Center this weekend, so we have to have our costumes finished up by then.

Monday, October 21

All Things Prairie-Like

 I have to admit...I'm living a motherhood dream over here!  You know, when the stars are in perfect alignment and your kid(s) momentary passion is one of your own childhood passions?  Yup, happening here right now!  Enter all things pioneer!  No this day if I could play dress-up as a pioneer girl all day long I would.  Long dress, bonnet, button-up boots, slate, braids, tin lunch pail, the whole 9 yards.

A while back we accidentally stumbled upon Little House on the Prairie airing on TV.  For a few weekends we timed it right and tuned in as a family and the girls loved it!  Of course, TV programming changes and we can't find it any more.  Enter Netflix!  This weekend the girls' DVD was disc one of season one.  Four episodes.  They were in heaven!  Immediately they dove into playing "Mary and Laura".  Saturday night I couldn't help myself and I whipped up two of these bonnets using this tutorial...

Obviously, I'm having a little too much fun...

Kelsey wore hers all day.  She had asked to wear it to church and I said she could.  At the last minute she changed her mind, but that was pretty much the only time all day it wasn't on...

And now I'm looking at this pattern...

from McCall's
...and wondering if I should whip up some pioneer dresses.  So far I am thinking no...that's my fantasy, not theirs.  They're happy with their dresses so far. But maybe just the aprons...;-) to find a tutorial for a 'sleeping hat' like Mary & Laura wear.  K is insistent...

Friday, October 18

{this moment}

{this moment} - A weekly ritual. A single photo - no words - capturing a moment from the week. A simple, special, extraordinary moment. A moment I want to pause, savor and remember.  

Inspired by SouleMama

Thursday, October 17

Who We Are

My girls have these Hello Kitty sticker books that also have some fill-in the blank writing pages.  I didn't realize they have been filling them out, but I found that they had left them here at my desk yesterday and I couldn't help but smile!  I am sharing their thoughts here so that I can look back at them and remember the snapshot of who they were in October 2013.


My lucky number is: 8
My best quality is: I do not know
A movie I could watch over and over again is: Brave
The best book I have ever read is: Ivy & Bean
A word I like to say a lot is: love
The TV show I never miss is: Cars
My favorite meal is: soup
The one think I never leave home without is: a kiss
The class I enjoy the most is: spelling
The coolest place I've ever been to is: OMSI


My lucky number is: 8
My best quality is: doing puzzles
A movie I could watch over and over again is: Birds (a kiddo documentary we got from the library)
The best book I have ever read is: Little Bear
A word I like to say a lot is: love
The TV show I never miss is: Curious George
My favorite meal is: lettuce
The one think I never leave home without is: a hug
The class I enjoy the most is: math
The coolest place I've ever been to is: OMSI


It's been quite wet here.  Usually by now it's also quite chilly, but that hasn't been the case this October.  On Tuesday the girls' soccer practice was cancelled and Daddy was at home not feeling well, so we put on our rain gear, grabbed jump ropes, and headed outside.  It was a blast!  Every single one of these photos is out of focus because the girls were moving and I was using my phone, but you know what?  I don't think it matters at all!  I think what matters is that we got out there, burned off some steam, and lived.  Kelsey nailed it when she said, "I bet people looking out their windows at us think we're crazy, but you know what?  We're just Alaska kids!"  Amen, kiddo!

They were a bit chilly when we came inside, so after a hot bath we broke into the hot chocolate stash.  Thanks to a combination of amazing LL Bean rain gear and Bogs boots they were still pretty dry, though!

I guess that's it for today...go make somebody smile!

Monday, October 14

This Weekend

Hello, friends!  Here it is Monday night and I'm finally sitting down to tell you about our weekend.  Busy day.  Going to be a bit of a busy week as well!

Saturday we spent most of the day at home.  In the morning the girls did a bit of painting..

We cut up a cardboard box to paint on.  Why didn't I think of that 4 years ago??  They were happily entertained for a good while!

Stacy's painting

Kelsey's paintings

In the afternoon the girls and I headed to Girdwood.  We visited the library and then met up with friends at the Alyeska resort daylodge for Oktoberfest.  The kiddos danced and danced...a great way to burn off some steam on a drizzly Saturday!

On Sunday, Scott fired up the smoker and we smoked some pork and chicken which we then shared with friends for dinner on Sunday night.  A great gathering!  Some kind friends picked up a new member of our family for us, so we also spent some time on Sunday assembling this pretty lady...

image source

She's HUGE!  Significantly larger than her predecessor...

image source
But old faithful has been dying a slow death since last spring, so it was time.  Here's Scott in the middle of assembly...

Just for the sake of size reference, here's the box the thing came in...

I ran on it this morning and I have to say...I really like it!  So much quieter, smoother, and softer than the old one.  Welcome to the family!

That was our weekend, but I have to share just a few more pictures with you because I went to town today and the skies were so pretty on my way in.  Luckily I had plenty of time to pull over and take some pictures.  Unluckily I forgot to grab my big camera (I was rushing to pick up a check to take to the bank.  But then the bank was closed today.  Fail.) so you'll have to settle for these phone pics...

Happy Monday!

Friday, October 11

{this moment}

{this moment} - A weekly ritual. A single photo - no words - capturing a moment from the week. A simple, special, extraordinary moment. A moment I want to pause, savor and remember.  

Inspired by SouleMama

Wednesday, October 9

On My Own

Inside my head is a messy, messy place!  There's  so much 'to do' that sometimes gets confused with 'want to do'.  Add in a healthy dash of mama-worry, a sprinkling of guilt and a splash of 'I wonder what they think of me' and there you are.  I know I'm not the first or only woman to navigate these waters...but nonetheless it is all new to me.  When the kids are at school I feel like it is my job to always be doing to something for someone else.  I'm pretty much ready to go back to work, but that opening hasn't presented itself so I am trying to make the most of this time.  Doing too much stuff that I want to do makes me feel horribly guilty.  Silly, I know.  With all of that in mind, maybe you can understand what a big deal it was for me to go take Monday afternoon and go hiking.  By myself. It was just too nice to stay inside!  And those kind of days are rapidly fleeing my zip code like refugees from a war-torn country!  So...I hiked.  And it was pretty!  So good to have my nature tank refilled and be re-centered in His creation.  Of course I brought along my BFF, my camera!

Monday, October 7

This Weekend

 Life rarely goes exactly to plan, does it?  Of course not...especially when you have two kids and a stomach bug going around town!  Stacy fell ill on Wednesday night and Kelsey on Friday night.  Kelsey's bout was much milder, but we had planned to go grocery shopping on Saturday so we ended up dividing and conquering...Scott stayed home with Kelsey and Stacy and I went shopping.  It was a beautiful Saturday along Turnagain Arm!

On our way home we caught this bore tide as we neared Girdwood.  In my whole four years of being an Alaska resident I had to to be in the right place at the right time to see one!  It was pretty cool, as you can tell by watching the video and listening to Stacy's excitement!

Friday, October 4

{this moment}

{this moment} - A weekly ritual. A single photo - no words - capturing a moment from the week. A simple, special, extraordinary moment. A moment I want to pause, savor and remember.  

Inspired by SouleMama

Wednesday, October 2


Inspired by this.

Outside my's pouring down rain

I am thinking...that my drive yesterday was absolutely beautiful!  One of those rare days where the colors are so vibrant, just before it freezes hard and all the leaves drop.

I am thankful...that my honey is home!  Nothing I like more than all of us at home together!

In the kitchen...dinner is already made...*pats self on back*

I am wearing...a brand new plaid flannel shirt...snuggy for a day like today.

I am creating...nothing new at the moment...have some works in progress I need to finish up, though!  And a quilt idea rolling around in my head...

I am shopping this weekend...

I am wondering...what adventures this winter holds in store for us

I am reading...just finished a book, but I don't have another one going yet

I am hoping...for something!

I am looking forward to...dinner with my friend Chelle tomorrow night!

I am manage my time and evaluate things before I commit to them

Around the house...are signs that my kids are growing up!  We just recently passed on our Little Tikes picnic table & our art easel...

I am steps

A favorite quote for today...

One of my favorite things...laughter!

A peek into my day...baked potato soup & fresh rolls.  It's what's for dinner!