Tuesday, October 25, 2016

Ten on Tuesday.

1. The World Series starts tonight! I have no skin in this game, and I think it would be sweet for either side to finally win this, so I'll just sit back and enjoy the best and last baseball of the year. May they drag it out to seven!

2. Last week I ran with temperatures around 70. This week around 45. Fall weather makes for lovely runs - no chance of overheating - but I need to remember what to wear. Two shirts in 45 was too much. Noted.

3. We have had a spat of Daddy traveling, which means for me I return to newborn rules: keep it simple. Put a few things on your list and call it a day. Yes the kids are in school all day, but I can't wear myself out for the evenings with them. That said, it probably wasn't the simplest idea to attempt the great seasonal clothes switch-out this week.

4. A more simple idea: catch up on Grey's Anatomy. I am finally up to the last episode of last season!

5. Alla starts Chamber Orchestra this week. That one day of the week she will have to be at school at 7AM. For the love.

6. Speaking of Alla, tomorrow is her half birthday!

7. Does anyone have a dust buster that lasts more than a year?

8. If you follow me on Goodreads, you will note that I am currently reading way too many books at the same time. This occasionally happens, and makes me insane. It is usually Alla's fault, as she thrusts whatever new find she has finished into my to-read pile. So at the moment I have three books going for myself, and one with the kids. And so many more to read.

9. I saw this on the interwebs yesterday and just adored it.

10. Just a new pic of my babes. Love 'em!

Tuesday, September 27, 2016

Ten on Tuesday.

1. Wow. Last Tuesday of September.

2. Fisher and I went on his half birthday date over the weekend, to a movie (The Secret Life of Pets) and lunch (Red Robin). I love that kid. And I love this tradition. (Thanks, Stahrs!)

3. We also watched the Twins lose their 100th game of the season. No matter. We are not fair weather fans. There's always next season.

4. A lesson I learned last week: Don't buy the two bag package of riced cauliflower from Costco unless you can use it that very same day. It's a good idea in theory, but a few days later you just have a smelly fridge.

5. Did you watch the debate last night? Oh my goodness.

6. I just finished listening to Raymie Nightingale on audio this week while running, while grocery shopping. I don't usually listen to audiobooks without the kids; that's kind of our thing over the summer when we road trip or just schlep to activities. But I truly enjoyed this and am going to see what else the library has for me!

7. Alla and I went to the new Goodwill yesterday and scored an amazing Halloween costume for her, as well as a costume for her part in the school musical Beauty and the Beast! Not sure what that place will be like in a few weeks, but right now you can have your pick of the cool costumey stuff! She declared it her favorite store and said she would like to shop there for her prom dress. I wrote that down. Should make her sign it.

8. I am desperately trying to catch up on my own personal editing in between client sessions and editing. I looked back through my 2015 pictures and wondered why they were so disorganized, and then remembered that oh yes we were remodeling our house for the first three quarters of this year, and for the first three months at least there was dust everywhere and plastic covering our stairs. So I guess I had other things to do.

9. Started a new book with the kids, The League and the Lantern, which so far is a hit all around!

10. I did a very adult thing this week and planted some mums. I don't know, are mums a Minnesota thing? In Costco last week I saw women walking out with those flat bed carts full of toddler-sized containers of them, for $14.99 each, and while I recognized this as a good deal, I couldn't for the life of me understand what to do with them. But then I came home and saw how sad my annuals were doing so the very next day I ripped them out, got some (smaller) mums from Trader Joe's and plopped them in my big planters. Voila! Planters updated for fall. I am an adult.

Tuesday, September 13, 2016

Ten on Tuesday.

1. Alright, before Halloween is here already, I better put up some pictures of the kids' first day of school. Sixth and third, for the love.

2. Though apple season is upon us, we are actually swimming in tomatoes. This is the first year I've ever done anything but cherry tomatoes - one cherry, one Early Girl - and it has been quite the few weeks of constant harvesting and constant consuming. Two tomatoes at each meal isn't even quite cutting it.

3. With the kids back in school I am attempting to increase my running miles after the decline that comes every summer with the heat and kid activities. Fall is my [running] jam. Forget 90 degrees, tomorrow morning will barely be fifty. Love.

4. With the kids back in school I am back to menus - for breakfast and dinner. Menus are saving me.

5. Fisher is playing fall soccer. Still trying to figure out what's going to save me from that.

6. The remodel is done here! We are still living with quite a few bare walls and no nightstands, but these things are quite livable compared to the amount of drywall dust that was settling daily.

7. This weekend we took the kids to dinner and a movie - Brasa and Star Trek.

8. Lots of reading going on lately. Alla is pleased that there is considerably less math homework in sixth grade, so she is taking full advantage of those hours and reading many, many books. The new Raina Telgemeier came today, which she tore through, and she's in the middle of Paper Wishes. I am reading Love Warrior and Ms. Bixby's Last Day.

9. Ron took Fisher to soccer practice yesterday, so Alla and I took advantage of the free hour and went for a seven mile bike ride, which was so wonderful. My middle schooler, so far, is just lovely.

10. Today is September 13th, which marks four months until the big 4-0!

Tuesday, August 02, 2016

Ten on Tuesday.

1. It's the 2nd of August, which means that Ron and I have officially been together for 19 years. 19 years today.

2. Tomorrow marks 14 years of marriage!

3. So excited that next week we will be heading to Hilton Head, where we will get to show the kids exactly where we got married.

4. August means baseball is over. Fisher is definitely not ready to let that go and is still out in the street hitting and pitching all afternoon, but as much as we love baseball, we were ready for a break. It was pretty cool to see him pitch during extended season, though, and know how much he is looking forward to a whole season of that next year.

5. What Alla does during games at fields with no playground: devour books, either actual books or audio.

6. Our July blog circle is live over at the photography website.

7. This is the last of four weeks in a row of swimming. Also ready to be done with that. And orchestra. Basically done with all commitments.

8. Seems so near the end of summer, but we don't go back to school until after Labor Day, thank goodness! So, lots left. Including vacation, and camp, and state fair, and lots more neighborhood happy hours and books to read.

9. Speaking of books, highly recommend I Will Always Write Back to both middle grade and up, as well as their parents! Such an inspiring read, eye-opening for children especially. This book does what books should do - expand our worlds.

10. I almost never change my profile or cover picture on facebook, but have done it a few times in the past two days, which means only that I am actually sitting down at my computer working on photos!

Monday, July 11, 2016

Summer is a whirlwind.

Summer is going by like it's a race to the first day of school, is it not?


I have been a mother now for eleven years, and yet I cannot figure out how to slow it down. It is in fact my biggest failing of the summer season, especially of the uniquely short Minnesota summer season.

Summer is all, What have you done? What are you checking off your list? Where have you been?

And I'm all, Not a lot. Maybe three items. And, Oooh! Oooh! I have a good answer for this one! Ohio!

We will get to the end of summer at some point in the very very distant future I am sure, and perhaps some of the boxes will be checked and we will have done more of the things, probably. And if not, then it is A-Okay because of Ohio, because my kids rocked a 12 hour day to make it there in one shot, and then back home in the same fashion. Because we got to spend four days with our dearest friends and their kids and our kids were dearest friends for those four days.

And I even got to be in a picture, thanks to my great husband, with my dears Catie (right) and Amy (left, obviously). Amy joined us from her epic road trip and we were so excited that our trips to Ohio managed to meet up on the very same day at Catie's house! Somewhere around the circles of friends there is another picture of the three of us from the reunion picnic of '09 but I have no idea where. Perhaps comparing isn't best anyhow?

Summer is a whirlwind from the moment the kids chuck their messy backpacks on the last day of school. So thankful for the camera's ability to freeze time with dear friends.

Monday, June 13, 2016

Welcome to Summer!

Thoughts on this Monday morning-first official day of summer vacation:

It is 9:35 am and my kids are still sleeping.

I am patiently waiting for them to wake up so I can shove some food in their mouths and head out for a run while it's still tolerable out there for me.

They must be tired from all the summer-ing this weekend.

I am so glad they are upstairs and not at school.

It's summer!!

Be slow, Summer.

Thursday, June 09, 2016

Summer Reading Lists: Alla, entering 6th grade.

Image Map A cold this week has resulted in me staying in, actually getting some stuff done at home versus running to the gym, the garden store, Costco, and all the other errands that await me on another day. One of those BIG projects here has been getting the kids' summer reading lists ready for them, as school officially ends on Friday. Unofficially, this is just a fun week, practically garbage in terms of actual learning, so the kids get their lists early so they can start choosing what they'd like to start with!

Anne Frank // I Will Always Write Back // The Penderwicks on Gardam Street // Turning 15 on the Road to Freedom // Anne of Green Gables // Farmer Boy // The Underground Abductor // Betsy and Tacy Go Over the Big Hill // Moon Over Manifest // Samurai Rising // Wolf Hollow // Hour of the Bees // Nine, Ten: A September 11 Story // To Kill A Mockingbird // Where the Red Fern Grows

View Fisher's reading list here!

Wednesday, June 08, 2016

Summer Reading Lists: Fisher, entering 3rd grade.

Fisher was very excited to receive his summer reading list and immediately started looking at the library website to see which ones they have (he might have trouble at checkout, however, as he has racked up a nice fine). So far he seems most excited to read Battle in the Arctic Sea, but is starting with Winn-Dixie because that's the only one from his list that we own!

Nathan Hale's Hazardous Tales // Nine, Ten: A September 11th Story //  Into the Killing Seas // A Whole New Ballgame // Battle in the Arctic Sea // Brooklyn Bat Boy //  The Way Home Looks Now // Cakes in Space // The Great Fire // Middle School // Because of Winn-Dixie // Courage Has No Color //  Kinda Like Brothers // Samurai Rising // Heat

View Alla's reading list here!

Tuesday, May 17, 2016

Ten on Tuesday.

1. It's May, so that means every household with school-age children across America is crazed. It is truly difficult to remember that just a few weeks ago we had literally no activities on the calendar, and now we are celebrating when we get one free night to eat dinner before nine. But these are not complaints. May is busy but perhaps the best month of the school year. Best weather, field trips, the end of testing, baseball, track, orchestra concert, birthdays, and a four day weekend.

2. It's May, so I've ordered summer math books for the kiddos. This is maybe the fifth summer we'll be using these, and I swear by them. They cover all the things they learned during the year in no more than 12-13 problems, ten minutes tops a few times a week and they are done. The books are called Summer Math Skills Sharpeners and that is exactly what they do. Highly recommend.

3. Speaking of summer, pretty soon I'm going to have to sit down and make summer reading lists for the kids! One of my favorite activities, and the kids look forward to receiving their lists. They are perfectly capable of choosing their own reading, of course, but summer is a great time to challenge and introduce them to books outside of their comfort zones and favorite genres.
4. Since summer is so very close, my days alone shall soon go on hiatus. Now I start thinking, what else do I  really want to do before summer starts? Shops I want to visit, paths I want to run on, hours I want to spend editing. Seems that before the Summer List is made, I should quickly make a Spring List, just for me, and start checking things off.

5. Track season is here, and baseball season is here. Often times I am picking up the track girl with the baseball boy already in uniform and heading straight to the field. Tonight, though, just track, so we let the kids play outside so much longer than normal dinner time. It was just so lovely, and they had all the little(r) kids in tow, all playing tag and laughing and I could see summer, how it will be here soon and they will all wake up [and do math and chores] and rush out there to greet the day and each other, and no matter the "things" we do to fill our days, they will probably remember the running around so much more.

6. Except. They cannot stop talking about going back to Fawn-doe-Rosa, a summer favorite, and earlier this year since we changed when we normally do swim lessons to coincide with orchestra lessons. Anyway. A friend reported seeing baby goats and a baby hedgehog, and that was it for them. They can't wait.

7. I am in the midst of Catherine Newman's lovely book, which is just so true and dear being in the middle season of parenting myself but not so far away that I can't remember two and five and in between. Trust me, if you are a parent, you will love it.

8. Looking to the week ahead, I am immensely excited for Fisher's baseball game tomorrow and Alla's track meet on Thursday. I love seeing them do these things they are good at and love.

9. Looking to the weekend ahead, Ron is turning 39 and we are going to a Twins game to hear Alla and the rest of the performing arts crew sing the National Anthem and  the Canadian National Anthem since we're playing the Blue Jays. Both of these things happen on Sunday.

10. My two-cent parenting advice for the day: when you get to bedtime prayers, sing them! My grandmother Nanny always said singing is praying twice, so even though my sung prayer tonight was much closer to Beavis and Butthead than Amazing Grace, it did the job. Amen.

Wednesday, May 04, 2016

Baseball is back.

It's back!

We've been following the Twins since Spring Training.

We've been practicing for a few weeks.

But tonight was the first game of the season, and my goodness is Fisher excited. He came home and made a chart of all his stats for the night.

Tell me if you think this is how they calculate On Base Percentage: he had 5 at-bats, was tagged out on 2 of them, so three of them landed him on base. He gave each of those times on base 50%, multiplied by the three times he landed on base and came up with .150 for his OBP.

Works for me.

Looking forward to a season of beautiful nights.

(He's fun to watch. If you're local, come to a game!)

Wednesday, April 20, 2016

It's very Wednesday.

I'm tired today! We are in the middle of the busiest week of the school year so far. Baseball has started, allergies have started, the school musical opens tomorrow, we are still very much in the throes of house remodeling, and I'm just glad we have one more night of leftovers. It's very Wednesday, which must be a fraternal twin to Monday. So, this little image of Fisher and I on his birthday is what I'm up for today. Forget all the 2015 pictures to edit, or the rest of the Harry Potters. I picked one image I loved and stuck it up here. Amen.

Wednesday, April 13, 2016

Harry Potter, part 1.


I have a seriously large folder of Harry Potter photos to get through, and with remodeling continuing in our home, the culling and editing is not high on the list. So this may be part one of ten or twenty or just two, who knows, but Harry Potter pictures speak for themselves.

For a serious Harry Potter fan, it is a must-see. Entering Diagon Alley literally takes your breath away. You think, Wow, I'm here and Wow, they really made this.

It is authentic and amazingly detailed and we were wowed!

Tuesday, April 05, 2016

Ten on Tuesday.

1. Here's Minnesota for ya - On Sunday I ran in shorts and a t-shirt. On Monday it was long sleeves, pants, running jacket, gloves, headband.

2. Definitely has me wishing for some more of this:

3. You can see more pool pictures from our week in Florida on the photography blog HERE. Ah, warmth.

4. The main part of remodeling is done here, and we're left with about thirty smaller projects that need to get done in order to relieve us from living in limbo, i.e. having two bedrooms with all the things and one bedroom with none of the things.

5. We are two weeks away from Alla's big weekend as the Tin Woman in her school production of The Wizard of Oz! If you're local, come see the show April 21-23 at Pinewood!

6. The kids and I are halfway through the second Nanny Piggins book. If you haven't read any of these TO your kids (they are absolute read-alouds), step on it. Hilarious and just what is needed in the last two months of the school year when all the things happen on the calendar.

7. We have learned that Fisher's baseball team this year will be the Angels! We are so ready for the season to start, and just need some baseball weather. 30s and rain is not going to cut it.

8. I am almost 75% of the way through A Little Life, which so far I am highly recommending.

9. A great family movie night from the past couple weeks - The Lego Brickumentary. If you've got die hard Lego fans in your house, it's a fun movie.

10. THIS week's family movie night will be the new Star Wars!

Saturday, March 19, 2016


It is truly truly hard for me to believe that my baby is eight. We mamas get sappy over every age it seems, and eight is no different really than seven was, but is a lot different than five and, I'm sure, ten. It's just a birthday thing, I think,

No different than every other sappy year. But, wow, it's been eight years since I've had him in my belly. That makes me feel further away from what I started out knowing was motherhood, and yet here I am deep in the trenches with an 8 year old and an almost 11 year old. Right in the middle.

This kid can be described in many ways, but here are 8:

1. Athletic
2. A good eater
3. Kind
4. A good friend
5. Whip smart
6. Warm
7. Baseball-loving
8. Outside-loving

He lets nothing hold him back, he just lives his life. He does what he does, he knows what he wants, and that is to play outside (preferably baseball), eat food, and feel loved by his family. His needs are so basic.

We discovered the summer he was 4 that he really loves baseball, and even though he plays soccer and football and tag and basketball and tennis, baseball is really his love.

He's kind of moody, I think anyone will tell you! Probably because he has these very basic needs, and when you throw something else in there he can be not all that flexible about it. So when I see a smile like THIS out of him, my heart just swells because that's our boy right there, the true him.

Happy birthday, Fisher. We love you so very much.

Thursday, March 17, 2016

Leap Day snapshots.

I hope it's not cheating to post these, as I'll then have an online record of them and could very well peek at them before the next Leap Day Time Capsule is upon us. I won't, though, as the surprise of looking through the 2012 pictures for the first time in 4 years was just too awesome.

What about you? Did you get your Time Capsule done? Did you put your photos in there and seal it shut? Shhhh, I'm still working on that last bit!

Tuesday, March 15, 2016

Ten on Tuesday.

1. Fisher had his first-ever birthday party this weekend! I think he had a good time.

2. The bathroom is DONE.

3. Now, onto other projects, right?

4. I'm thinking Zootopia one day over spring break.

5. Fisher turns EIGHT on Saturday.

6. Saturday it was almost 70 degrees again, and I ran in shorts again, and it was lovely again.

7.  A Little Life is very, very good. If you're taking this on, invest yourself for 100 pages to get into it.

8. Alla made it into the 5th Harry Potter book - a valiant effort!

9. Hard to believe Easter is next Sunday! Better get my act together.

10. This is how far I've gotten on my 2015 editing: October, obviously.

Tuesday, March 08, 2016

Ten on Tuesday: Seriously happy edition!

1. We have entered a miraculous two-day period of sixty degree weather. Serious happiness. Running in shorts. Glee.

2. Seriously happy about all the people coming to finish our bathroom this week! (Day 50)

3. Here is the seriously happy face of a girl finding out that she gets to see Harry Potter World at last.

4. And the seriously happy face of a boy playing outside every single day after school, 365 days out of 365 days a year, any sport, all the sports with all the balls, but exceptionally happy about any weather warm enough to melt snow because, BASEBALL.

5. I ditched socks yesterday when I picked up the kids from school and instead dug out my Sanuks. And didn't need a coat this morning.

6. Pax, you are tugging on our hearts.

7. Only days left til the time change! More light!

8. It is March, and thus I feel we are in the season where there is much to celebrate and much to look forward to, but also I remember this is the best time of the year in one major way: we are gaining daylight every single day for the next three months. And then we are not.

9. Last night Ron and the kids drew me palm trees.

10. Last night we had Catherine Newman's Pork Adobo, all different ways - some in a tortilla with cheese, some with avocado on top, some with roasted sweet potato on the side, some with chips. ALL DELICIOUS. I just know that Ron was excited for pork meat, as we call it, so yay.

Also - did you know Catherine Newman HAS A NEW BOOK COMING OUT?

Happy Tuesday!

Tuesday, March 01, 2016

Ten on Tuesday.

1. It is the first of March! We made it. It is currently 15 degrees, but that is O-K, because we will see 60 this month, we will see big swings and feel warm some of the days, and that is all I ask of March.

2. Also it was 59 on Saturday so WOW.

3. Are you wondering if the dust has cleared and the construction is done? No, it is not. Day 43.

4. Found these gems in our Leap Day 2012 Time Capsule, which we opened last night. Today's plan is to upload the pics from yesterday and get those ordered and into our 2016 capsule so we can SEAL IT!

5. Kids and I finished Where the Mountain Meets the Moon, which we all enjoyed. Last night we started Pax, which just grabs your heart from the first page. Only three chapters in, I'm going to whole-heartedly recommend it.

6. I love a week when I can make recommendations! Absolutely everyone should find a copy of When Breath Becomes Air. Beautiful, heart-wrenching book. Just read it.

7. It's birthday month for Fisher! He will be 8 on the 19th. EIGHT.

8. Alla has made a goal to re-read ALL the Harry Potter books before our trip there in a few weeks, and gosh darnit I think she may do it. She is more than halfway through Book 4. Did you read that carefully? We are finally getting these Harry Potter-loving kids to Hogsmeade!

9. Alla and I get to see Alvin Ailey tonight!

10. So, if I've just finished When Breath Becomes Air, that means I'm onto a new book. Yesterday I started A Little Life, which has been on my to-read list since last year, but is very intimidating because of it's 700+ pages. I saw it at Costco last week, though, and actually purchased it, so now I'm in. Maybe for awhile.

Tuesday, February 23, 2016

Ten on Tuesday.

1. I am so far behind on editing my own pictures that a 2016 folder hasn't even been created.

2. It is dreary today, hence the sparkly sunny image of hope up there.

3. Gone Girl, done, good riddance. Not good, not my favorite, back to middle grade.

4. Well, almost. My Name is Lucy Barton came in at the library and since there are about a hundred other people on the wait list for that, I can't very well return it without reading it. And also When Breath Becomes Air is waiting at the library for me. But then, so is Pax, which I may get to read to the kids.

5. Yesterday was the science fair (also good riddance), so if you want to know which bat hits farthest, wood or aluminum, Fisher can help you out. Alla has found an invisible ink recipe to stand behind. I am so very glad we are done with it until next year. As we walked out of the school last night we had to restrain ourselves from tossing the poster boards directly into the dumpster.

6. I'm thinking I need to get to a workout class this morning to get out of my gray funk. Maybe sweat it out.

7. Day 35 of construction: the living room is getting back to normal, and we can now watch TV on actual couches. The bathroom, a lot of progress since last week (we are at day 35), but still not close to done.

8. The newspaper is carrying stories from Twins' spring training and we are eating it up, Fisher and I. We wish we were that warm. Fisher wishes the season would start already. I am remembering summer days when games weren't on TV so he and I would listen to a game on the radio while following the plays on the ipad. I think we remember things so differently when it's been so long, or we long for those days to come back. Probably that happened once and Fisher was outside playing his own game of baseball.

9. I am eager to take Fisher to see the new baseball movie, Fastball.

10. Progressive dinner for this weekend! The Killins family is doing main dish, which I think this time is going to be a baked potato bar, but this is a very loose plan at this point. Suggestions for toppings or sides is welcome!

Tuesday, February 16, 2016

Ten on Tuesday.

1. Weekends are so precious when you're in the middle of a home remodel, not because your house is any less filthy or turned upside down, but because you have two, or on a holiday weekend, three!, blessed days without folks in your space.

2. That said, I'd be willing to let them in my home all next weekend if only they'd finish. I'm literally sitting here next to a wet saw. Watching TV. This picture, unfortunately, was taken before the chaos began (when I probably thought all the things in this picture were chaos!), and alas it has been almost ten days now since I've seen the floor of this room as it is filled with couches. All the couches in one room. Great.

3. After enduring bitter cold last week, we are in the mid-thirties with forty on the horizon. I am not kidding when I say you won't have to look hard to find a Minnesotan in shorts should the thermometer rise over 45. There may even be a  person in my own household digging for shorts on that glorious day, not naming names.

4. This presidential election is ridiculous. We must look like buffoons to the rest of the world.

5. The candidates must be tired, don't you think? I get tired just thinking of all the cities they have to get to, and all the people they have to speak to. Pffft. Give me a book.

6. We had such a lovely lovely dinner on Saturday with Nana and Pappi at Pizza Luce! Let me tell you how nice it is to eat a meal out that is safe for Fisher, not cooked by me, and not coated with dust.

7. After sounding like I was giddy last week about sending the kids off to camp at the same time, during which time Ron and I might actually go on our own little mini vacation (yay 14 year anniversary!), I am now missing them already, and camp isn't til August. What on earth is wrong with me.

8. Almost done with parenting book, which means that I've been hit over the head lots of times with the message about maintaining attachment with my children as they grow older, which I have had every intention of doing but now have reasons. And now I have more reason to not want to send my kids to camp.

9. Have to say, Gone Girl is getting good. Twists and turns and all.

10. In case anyone is wondering, we are now on day 28 of remodel. The majorly dusty stuff is pretty much done, but goodness I am tired of couches in my living room, no furniture in the TV room, only one bathroom, tarps on the floor, filth, people. Yep, I'm sure it will be awesome and all worth it.

Friday, February 12, 2016


These pictures are from our half birthday date in September, let's just clear that up - no arms have been seen in Minnesota since at least October

Last week I got to spend the morning with this kid while we went to his quarterly diabetes check-up.

We always bring books. And notepads and pencils.

It can take awhile. Lots of waiting. The waiting room has zero to do. The exam room is the same.

We read, he draws, we chat.

I don't like him having diabetes. I do like our quarterly scheduled drive to St. Paul.

He is always in a good mood on these days.

He is always in a hurry to get back to school, to not miss math or recess or lunch or gym.

He told his teacher last week that math, recess, lunch and gym are really the only important parts.

He is only 7 and has such ideas. I wonder where he gets these strong ideas.

I am regularly so proud that he is mine.

Tuesday, February 09, 2016

Ten on Tuesday.

1. It's week four of the downstairs remodel. After last week being pretty much a dead week of delays, and enjoying that peace and a relatively clean house, I think I am ready for the filthiest week yet, because that might mean the end of construction.

2. We had some super disappointed kiddos Sunday night when we made them go to bed after the Halftime Show. Mean Mommy and Daddy.

3. After a couple of relatively mild weeks, even with last week's 10 or so inch snowfall, we are back into the teens with subzero wind chill. Since wind is just about the worst thing to run in, I took myself to a step class this morning.

4. My kids have rediscovered their love of Chex.

5. Book update #1: I am enjoying reading Where the Mountain Meets the Moon to the kids, and Ron's book with them is the second Percy Jackson.

6. Book update #2: I am reading both Gone Girl, and Hold Onto Your Kids, and am learning a few things. First, reading two books at once is not enjoyable for me. Second, neither of these genres is my favorite. And third, I really miss middle grade fiction.

7. In case you love middle grade fiction, too, I'll let you in on the middle grade fiction I'm MOST looking forward to at the moment: Pax. But only because technically it's already out and I'm just waiting on the library to get it in. If time were not a factor, then April will bring us new Kate DiCamillo. New. Kate. DiCamillo.

8. We moved to Minnesota almost ten years ago, so we've had plenty of winters here - mild ones, harsh ones, snowy ones, and years where the snowshoes just sit unused. A rule I created for myself early on was not to complain and not to daydream until March 1st. We're still in February, which is a cold month, long despite its fewer days, still dark, and the snow is hit or miss. But March! From March 1st to March 31st there can be drastic differences! Or not. But the possibility is there. We have had snow days in March. We have dined al fresco in March. The clocks spring forward in March, Fisher's birthday is in March, spring break is in March! This year with all the remodeling going on in here, I just cannot wait to throw open the windows and breathe fresh, not painfully cold air. I cannot wait to sit in lawn chairs and watch the kids climb trees and play baseball. But. I will stop there, because this is sounding dangerously like daydreaming.

9. At this point I will settle for daydreaming about things happening in February, like tile getting installed in our new bathroom and people not being in my house all day long. And having two bathrooms again.

10. Hard to believe but it is about time to sign our kids up for summer camp. Fisher says he's ready for a week away and we're attempting to get Alla on board for camp the same week. Listen, this is probably getting into daydreaming territory, but I daresay it's possible that we might get a few nights this summer where they are both at camp. At the same time. Too early to book a flight?

Tuesday, January 26, 2016

Ten on Tuesday.

1. This was going to be a pictureless post because our downstairs is currently TORN UP and my computer is currently tarped so there's no getting to anything even remotely current. But then I found this gem on my laptop and the day was saved.

2. Today = day 6 of renovations. Some days I think I'm going to lose my ever-loving mind. You know I don't like dust, right? Well, remodeling is dusty. Real dusty.

3. Turns out non-fiction parenting is not really my jam right now. So I've also started Gone Girl, which, no, I never read. Still chugging along on the parenting book, at a rate of 5 pages a day. Will be done before Spring Break.

4. Speaking of Gone Girl, I'm wondering if there are other BIG books out there that I missed that everyone just ate up.

5. Back to the non-fiction parenting, though, real quick just to say that sometimes you have to be in the right frame of mind to read a certain type of book, and currently my mind is bogged down by all the dust in my house and requiring something a bit lighter than parenting theory. But I can take it in 5-page increments.

6. Balmy here this week, upper 20s and even 30. Might hit upper 30s by the weekend.

7. Majorly jealous of the several feet of snow people on the East Coast got. I realize three feet is no joke, but I would really like a chance at it, and I can say for certain that the kids would more than love it.

8. Alla had her orchestra concert last night! I hope she sticks with it; it is certainly obvious to me how much these kids improve year to year, because by the time they got to the high school part of the program it was pretty amazing.

9. Sometimes I don't put pants on over my workout pants which are typically capri-length, and then I'm aware of how Minnesotan I must look at Target with my parka, hat, and mittens, but calves just out.

10. Watched The Rookie with the kids over the weekend, which was a home run (ha) in my book - it's a feel good movie, it's about baseball, and there were no weird PG-13 moments. Sadly, I think we're coming close to having seen all the baseball movies.

Tuesday, January 19, 2016

Ten on Tuesday.

1. This picture. Found while editing 2015 - I've advanced to September. The glow of late summer.

2. Today we had our lower level bath demolished in order to start the process of gaining a master suite for us and separate rooms for the kiddos. Bittersweet, but there's still months of work ahead for them to start hating each other, which would make splitting them up easier. They've shared a room since Fisher was 11 weeks old, so...

3. Finished Everything, Everything, which I'm going to recommend wholeheartedly.

4. Planning to start a nonfiction book next, a parenting book to be more specific, and generally in 2016 knock out more of the books I keep putting off, or have borrowed, or already have on my to-read list. It's a different approach for me, not having a bunch of books scheduled on request from the library, waiting til I finish one to pick out the next. It's working so far.

5. Temperature got up to eight degrees today, at which point I suited up and headed out for a quick run, two 1.4 mile laps close to home, during the last of which I was joined by Alla on rollerblades. Never seen a kid on rollerblades in snow clothes?

6. Got to see our favorite Okee Dokee Brothers over the weekend at a local high school!

7. Despite the chilly temps, it's been sunny for going on 4 days straight. This is more than a consolation prize.

8. Kids are currently listening to Daddy read Percy Jackson, painting, and eating chocolate chips and marshmallows, their treat of choice.

9. Ron and I got out for a chilly date night this weekend, courtesy of Nana + Pappi! We had a lovely dinner at Wise Acre and then got to see The Revenant! (We did the early bird dinner to hit up such a long movie and still be home before 10:30, I need my sleep.)

10. We got on the bandwagon and started Making a Murderer.

Wednesday, January 06, 2016

Ten on Tuesday.

1. I'm sitting here editing pics from way back in the hot days of August, and came across this gem, which makes me so happy and almost warm. But I'm not sure if just this picture will do the trick come Sunday when the high before wind chill is supposed to be right around zero. Glad I'm not a football fan heading out to the Vikings game. Brrrr.

2. We had a delightful two-week break with everyone home doing lots of nothing. I can count the number of times the kids got in the car on one hand, maybe just a few fingers. We really did a lot of nothing. Reading books, cooking, eating, playing lots of Uno and Exploding Kittens, watching movies, snowshoeing. Like summer but with snow.

3. We did all get out one time together and that was to see STAR WARS, which was super wonderful and we all might want to go see it again.

4. Currently reading to the kids: Nanny Piggins, which is laugh out loud funny. Ron is currently reading Percy Jackson to them.

5. Currently reading to myself: All-American Boys, which at only halfway through I can say is a must-read.

6. Ron and I binge-watched Narcos and the first season of Fargo over the Christmas break.

7. On the horizon for this month: Science Fair. Just about my least favorite school activity there is, so if you have any fantastic ideas feel free to shoot them my way. I'll then find a way to make it seem like the kids came up with them on their own.

8. I'm about to head out for a run and it's about 25, so I'm going to appreciate the warmth before next week when I have to remember what single-digit running is like.

9. I finished my Project 365 on December 31st! It will probably take me all of 2016 to get all those pictures re-sized, edited and made into a book, but I did it!

10. I took on that project for a single year, knowing I would not be likely to continue or repeat it. (It's a lot of work.) But I happened upon a new project for this year: 1 Second Everyday, an app that allows you to take a video everyday, snip it into a 1-second bit, and then puts it all together for you at the end of the year. So excited for this!