Sunday, May 31, 2009


Friday, May 29, 2009

just for fun.

{have you picniked lately?}

Thursday, May 28, 2009

Dear Chloe, I'll never forget...

Earlier this week, when you totally unexpectedly gathered the family together outside after dinner, to announce you had prepared a presentation.

I immediately had tears in my eyes when you began reading from the six 3 x 5" note cards:

Here are some appreciations for the family.

Chayse: I appreciate you for being a great brother and always trying to make me laugh when I am hurt.
{At which point Chayse embarassedly continued to ride his scooter, trying to ignore your words.}

Camden: I appreciate you for your cute laugh.

Daddy: I appreciate you for turning around the car and getting my bunny when it flew out the window.
{A story in and of itself.}

Mommy: I appreciate you for giving us breakfast, snacks, lunch, and dinner.

I appreciate the whole family for loving each other!

{Yes, I just snuck into your room to search for the speech to copy down.}


{Today you are 7 years, 8 months, and 29 days old. I love you.}

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

lake fun

Memorial weekend highlights included:

bean bag tossing sandcastle building jumping on the giant raft rice crispy treat making movie watching snuggling on the couch swimming in the lake...

[The kids had a blast hangin' out with their good buddy, Damian!]

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

really, really 'pissed'.

What was NOT on my to-do list today:

*wade around- ankle deep- in flooded bathroom,
(toilet overflow courtesy of Camden)
using 30+ towels to sop up the mess.

*squeeze out & launder sopping towels,
creating 500 extra unexpected wash loads.

*steam clean surrounding (brand new) carpet,
which is now soaked through to the sub-floor.

*sterilize bathroom (and children) from top to bottom.
(why can't I stop lathering myself in hand sanitizer?)

I'll let you know what treasures the plumber finds deep down in there.
Until then...
Squirt, scrub, repeat.

Monday, May 25, 2009


"Your beauty and love chase after me
every day of my life.
I'm back home in the house of God
for the rest of my life."
-Psalm 23:6

Saturday, May 23, 2009

but wait... there's more!

If you were as excited about yesterday's giveaway at Joy's Hope as I was, you're in luck!

The ladies have switched it up, and you won't want to miss TODAY'S giveaway at Little Bit Funky!

Friday, May 22, 2009

we're outta here!

On the way to our favorite Lake House...

Kevin's Sanctuary.
The place we spent our first-ever getaway together.
Where we hope to spend many summer weekends for years to come.

Cupcakes I made for the birthday boys last year (pre-blog):

Striking resemblance, I know.

Camden has been wearing nothing but her life-jacket and flip-flops (literally) for the past three days, in preparation.
"I wanna go to the yyyyake!"

Happy Lake Weekend to us!
Enjoy your friends and families this Memorial Day Weekend.

{photos from Memorial Weekend '08... when we amazingly went

Oh. By the way, stop by here for a SILHOUETTE giveaway you won't want to miss! Need I say more?!

Thursday, May 21, 2009

becoming a reality...

Head here for a Cora's Playground update.

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Wordless Wednesday

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Camden's Cupcakes

I have every intention of posting my Cookie Monday recipe each Monday. But let's face it, most of the time, we bake after dinner, and by that time I'm lucky if I get the kitchen cleaned up before bed. And am I the only one who was completely riveted by the educational gem of a show that is The Bachelorette? Who has time for blogging when you're exercising your brain? So here it is Tuesday...

Yesterday's baking recipe (not exactly cookies) was inspired by Camden. As we shared a bowl of cherry tomatoes for lunch, watching Martha demonstrate her new Triple Citrus Cupcake recipe, Stinky proclaimed:


And so it was decided. After all, Martha said herself, "See, it only took me 5 minutes to get these in the oven." Wow, Martha, can you please let me know where to get pre-measured ingredients in those cute little bowls (including 9 zested citrus fruits), so that I, too, can make homemade cupcakes in record time?

She had her mixer going, adjusting the speed accordingly, right along with me. I wish my KitchenAid was that color! We made a third of the recipe, yielding 9 cupcakes.

Delicious turnout... but you must really love citrus. Kevin wouldn't go near them. Oh, he loves citrus alright... in the form of mojitos, margaritas, & mimosas, that is. CamCam and I (the only ones still up at this point) prefer ours via yummy cupcakes.

Monday, May 18, 2009

Beach Baby

Camden is our water girl.

I was sure the beach was ruined forever for her, when at just a few weeks old, she had an unexpected 'taste' of the sand.

Growing up with the beach a stone's throw from home, I'm still getting used to driving more than ten minutes for an ocean visit. So packing up our new family of five, including a tiny baby who hated the car, for a trek to Santa Cruz was a big deal. After a way-too-long car ride, everyone was thrilled to get the heck out of the Tahoe. Kevin and Baby CamCam started down the beach first, and I followed- toys and toddlers in tow.

It was a windy day. Daddy was holding Camden in her car seat, down at his side. With one fateful step, the back of his flip-flop kicked up a scoop of sand, which was caught in a whirl of wind. I watched in slow-motion as the wind whipped the sand right smack into Camden's tiny face. Every nook & cranny encrusted with sand. You literally could not see her eyes, both nostrils were plugged, and she was gagging. I'm getting sweaty just writing about!

I screamed in horror, Chloe (5) began crying uncontrollably, poor Camden was miserable, Chayse (2) could care less, and Kevin tried- unsuccessfully- to keep the whole clan calm. I grabbed the first liquid in sight to douse her face, which unfortunately for Camden, was Chayse's ice cold sippy cup of juice. Poor girl.

The next few hours included lots of nasal aspiration and the emergency room, and not so much sun-bathing or wave-jumping.

It could have something to do with the sand Christening, but two years later Camden would spend every day at the beach if she could. She wants to be covered from head to toe- and every crevice in between- with sand, searching for sand crabs and darting along the shore with no fear.

Sunday, May 17, 2009

happy sunday!


Friday, May 15, 2009

chap stick and gum

Top two essentials. I buy both in bulk: gum-Orbit, chapstick- Trader Joe's 3 packs (one for the car, bathroom, & purse). These are also Camden's top two go-to's when she gets a hold of my purse. For some reason this morning I found a Cherry ChapStick floating around my car, and when Camden spotted me using something much yummier than the typical TJ's stuff, she began begging.

"Just a LITTLE BIT," I warned.

Famous last words.

Moments later, I checked the rear-view mirror to find her chomping away- as if there were a huge wad of gum in her mouth- with an empty chapstick tube in her hand. Yes, she had twisted the fruity wax all the way up, bit it off, and combined her obsessions with both chapstick-application and gum-chewing.


{Luckily I had previous knowledge- from one of many frantic phone calls I made to Poison Control when Chloe was little- that most lip balm is harmless, worst case scenario being a very slippery poop.}

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

The Story of Sacramento

Between my living in (native) San Diego and the Bay Area, I spent a 2-year "transition" in a little town outside California's capitol.

During this time, I...
*Had an awesome preschool teaching job (3 & 4-year-olds) that I really, really miss.
*Became roommates with my friend Tegan (who was a big part of the reason I moved to Sac to begin with).
*Through work, started a friendship (with the parents of a student) that would soon greatly impact the direction my life would take.

With no expectations, one warm August Friday evening, I pulled up to the driveway of my new friends' home. Fred (the dad) was tossing a Frisbee back and forth with a very good-looking (shirtless) man. It was sunset. I was wearing a turquoise tank top and faded denim jeans. As I shut my car door and turned toward the house, to my surprise I was greeted with a huge smile and the extended right hand of Mr. Shirtless.

"Hi, I'm Kevin."

Tegan- my good friend and roommate- and Fred- Kevin's good friend and Dad to my student- two of our biggest supporters, as Kevin and I embarked on our long-distance relationship (Kevin being from the Bay area), turned marriage.

Years and children later, we don't make it back to visit Tegan or Fred nearly as much as we should. Today we got lucky- times two. Tegan had the day off and wanted to come visit with new baby, Mason. Fred was in the area on business and had time to stop in for dinner.


Camden was fascinated by 3 1/2-month-old Mason. She kept looking him straight in the eyes and saying, "TALK!" We enjoyed a walk downtown, including pizza and window shopping. Here's the little guy modeling the onesie I made him for St. Patricks Day BUT NEVER SENT! He's Irish, thankfully, so a shamrock is appropriate, even after March.

The afternoon made me realize how much I miss spending time with Tegan.

Two hours after Tegan walked out the door, Fred walked in. It's always a good time with Fred. Chicken was barbecued, wakeboard lingo was exchanged, and plans were set for our first Lake trip of the summer.

Tears are shed, without fail, when it's time for Fred to go (Kevin- not me).

So strange to wonder where-oh-where we would be today without these two. Thank God for bringing Tegan and Fred into our lives. Everything really does happen for a reason.


Joy's Hope is one of the first crafty blogs I ever fell in love with, and is still one of my favorite favorite reads of the day. I think you'll agree, Julie is awesome. Actually she left the very first comment on my blog, after I suggested a paint color for her cute girls' room.

Imagine my surprise yesterday when I blog-hopped my way over for a daily dose of inspiration, only to find an entire post dedicated to me. Wow. I love the blogosphere, and how it brings you together with the best people- who share so many of your interests, those you never would have met otherwise.

Julie has inspired me to do so much, including teaching myself to sew and organizing the Cora project, to name just a couple. If you haven't already (you must live under a rock), go visit Joy's Hope!

Monday, May 11, 2009

Mother's Day Captured

I spent Mother's Day weekend in Palm Desert with my mom & sisters, for the second year in a row. After last year, we decided it officially needed to be an annual trip, and trust me- I looked forward to it ALL YEAR. Last time, it was a little harder to leave Camden, who had just barely been weaned. This year, she had so much fun with Kevin, I could have probably stayed another week without her noticing.

If you haven't tried a Momcation, it comes highly recommended. It is so refreshing to indulge in a few days of uninterrupted dining, bathing, sleeping, and adult conversation- the little things. The ultimate Mother's Day gift. I came home rested and recharged for another year.

Our gift to our mom was a surprise photo shoot. My old friend from high school, Lillie, is an amazing photographer in the Palm Springs area. Holly, Hannah, and I had fun taking Mom shopping for an outfit, getting pedicures, and prepping for pictures without her having a clue. She was shocked!