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2017 May 13
by Becky


“Full” best explains life right now.

Full of happiness, full of stress, full of adorable moments, full of growth, and full of changes.

For the second year, I agreed to help with a not-so-minor part of our school’s biggest fundraising event, a “soriee” if you will, and what with my new job and the kids expanding schedules and so so many favors and other volunteer projects happening ALL in the same several weeks, I’ve felt like I’m barely keeping my head above water. Don’t get me wrong, it I love doing hands-on creative projects in the evenings, but sometimes even things you enjoy feel like a burden when there are just so many other priorities.

It’s also hard to focus on being a patient and fun parent when there are so many things on my mind. It would be easier to complete a task like answering emails or making dinner or ordering paper lanterns. So while there were SO many errands to run and loose ends to tie up, Finn and I still have three days alone together and we made sure to escape to the garden last week for my favorite ever flowers: irises and peonies.

This is the best season!!! Totally spectacular!! Every bed was bursting with brilliant color, each one more incredible than the next.

We like to play the “find your favorite” game, fully aware it’s an impossible task.


Finn was enamored with the deep purple Alliums with their round heads swaying in the lovely spring breezes. “Purple balls!” he yelled around every curve in the path.

(I think it’s funny my friend Kristin at Thirdstory(ies) took this exact same picture last week. Brains in sync.)

Prior to this day the rain had been record-breaking and disastrous, so when it finally stopped, we couldn’t wait to be outside. An excuse to call the walk to the giant koi bridge my workout for the day.

Too bad our walk was so slow and stop-ridden there’s no way I burned more than 50 calories.



Irises. You are so bizarre and wild and I’m enamored with you. Those fuzzy orange tongues get me every year, I think they are so adorable. No flower is like another, this particular garden like a crowd of eccentric characters all clambering for the title of “Most Amazing”.  I must have said “Look at this one!” 72 times while walking the meandering path through these gems and Finn was much better this year, remembering to use his nose and not his hands with the gentle petals.

And yet before those fat fish got their food, we stopped again to gaze at my tip-top-ultimate favorite blooms, out in all their glory.




There just aren’t words.

Actually, I take that back. After sticking his nose in a couple dozen peonies, Finn declared, “They taste like orange juice!” And you know, I think he’s kind of right.

I love how the peony beds follow the curve of the path, all mixed together in pinks and whites and reds. All in different stages of bloom. Many embodied my current state: FULL.


This little Finn. The second kid thing sneaks up on me in weird ways. Life wasn’t as busy when Ethan was little (though my five-year-ago self would probably disagree), and I had what seemed like endless time to go everywhere, see everything, to keep us from going stir crazy at home. It is more deliberate with Finn, taking time for just the two of us to explore our favorite places without friends or big brother around to get in his way.

Times for him to choose.


He’s a pretty awesome little companion.

I’ll forever be grateful for the beauty and wonder these gardens provide. They are right down the street and the most amazing spot to spend an hour or three. Walking the garden’s paths, I always feel completely removed from the city around us, transported to a different–and seemingly perfect—time and place. My heart swells to know my kids cherish them too.

See? Full.


All The Things

2017 April 30
by Becky

I think Spring may just be the busiest time of year.

Everyone is drifting out of the winter fog, realizing summer is looming and school is ending too soon. Camps must be secured, sports played, fundraisers planned, and teacher gifts purchased. The weather gets nice again and people get motivated to do stuff and start calling in favors. At least for me, it’s been slammed.

So what have we been up to? Lots.  

I’m going to start with myself, not usual I know, what with all the cuteness the boys have to offer, but here goes.

I got a job! After months of looking for just the right gig, I landed a part-time spot with a fabulous local caterer and it’s exactly what I needed.


I work with the rest of the small kitchen crew to prepare and cook food for events and I’ve already learned so much. Every day is different and everything I do culminates in something delicious for people enjoy. Like those cheese cookies with tomato jam pictured above? I’ve made like 400 of those so far and they are so yum!! In addition to making the food, I’ve worked one event, plating beautiful food and seeing exactly how hard caterers work to present delicious four course meals for hundreds of people…it reminded me of my days waiting tables in college, but just ten times more stressful.

Ok, now on to the cute stuff. Easter was great!




In addition to our yearly traditions of a backyard egg hunt, easter baskets, and brunch at my uncle’s house, we helped organize a block party and egg hunt. Along with our neighbors, we hid hundreds of eggs in the median and closed down the street so the kids could go wild. The day was absolutely gorgeous, everyone was in a good mood because watching kids run around finding colorful eggs to put in their little baskets is pretty much one of the cutest traditions ever invented. It was really wonderful to see so many neighbors pot-lucking on the green space at the center of our homes, all of us emerging after too many chilly days spent indoors. It’s just another reason we LOVE where we live.



Sure Easter was beautiful but since then it’s been pretty rainy. The last two weekends have had us heading indoors again, so we figured it was high time Finn experienced City Museum. We’ve taken Ethan several times, but nothing ever prepares me for the amazingness of this place. Man on man coverage is vital for survival, but not always effective since our kids were completely out of sight within the first 15 minutes, lodged up in a hollow tree slide, before popping out in a totally hidden place in the floor a few minutes later. We left a couple hours later with two exhausted and overstimulated kids ready for lunch, which was had at the new downtown location of Sugarfire Smokehouse (omg yum), then naps.


Ethan and I hit the Fox Theater for The Lion King last week. We got there early to participate in activities, since it was Kids Night, and Ethan was SO PUMPED. He got a tattoo, watched a dance demo, took his time decorating a crown, and then sat riveted for the whole show. The musical is so beautifully done, perfect for kids and completely satisfying for adults. We couldn’t get over the stunning costumes and the performers were incredible!!! He’s been talking about it every day—he’ll tell you the giraffes were his favorite—and we listen to the Broadway soundtrack in the car on repeat.

I couldn’t be more excited about my kid loving musicals this much. Wondering if Finn will ever be into this like his big bro…


And I’m posting this picture for no other reason than that it’s adorable and I took a similar one of Ethan right around this same age. We had a miserable, rainy, cold field trip to the zoo on Friday (don’t ask…I could go on about this forever) and the whole trip was worth it to watch Finn tromp around with this huge umbrella, wearing this red rain coat.

I later had to wrestle that same umbrella out of his hands because it was becoming a weapon. Things went downhill from there…but at least I have this picture.

The best part about the rain? Toads.



Ethan has taught little bro the art of toad catching and it’s pretty cute to watch. There are plenty roaming around our yard, hiding in the mulch, often spotted by a foraging chicken. We’re very careful, even Finn keeps his squeezey hands at bay while handling these sweet little guys, and we laugh when they hop because, well, it’s hilarious. Finn’s just a lot more willing to put his back in the garden than Ethan ever was at that age (see footage of Ethan sobbing over a released toad in our 2015 family video…his life was ending on camera).

Even in the rain I can barely get these two in the house, they just want to be outside. Playing t-ball is the new obsession since we’ve been practicing for Ethan’s league games. If it ever stops raining, he may be able to play in one again!


I’m really proud of Ethan and his interest in this sport. We’ve never pushed him on sports, figuring he can try what he wants when he’s ready, and boy was he ready to join his buddies on the t-ball field. He came home from his first game elated, telling me about his performance and about the awesome things his friends did. As long as he enjoys it, I’m happy.

Finn wants to play t-ball with the big kids SO BAD. Anything to be like brother and anything that deals with sports—that’s Finn’s jam. He’s so physical it shocks us, especially since Ethan is just now becoming more daring and interested in sports. This month he decided to stop kidding himself and climbed out of his crib. He now insists on climbing in and out at nap and bed times so I guess we might as well upgrade to a read bed soon. He can hit a ball that’s pitched to him, catch a ball, run, jump, climb, and is really close to figuring out his balance bike…all while having constant conversations.

My friends have been loving my Finn videos lately, the ones proving his physical capabilities in the realm of climbing. My favorite shows a butt-naked kid doing a pull up to climb on to the fireplace mantel in Ethan’s room. Since that’s not appropriate for the web, I’ll share with you with this PG version…

He can basically get into anything in our house that isn’t protected by child safety locks or razor wire (which I’m strongly considering for the kitchen counter top). I’m sure it’s just a matter of weeks before he figures those out too.

I can’t help but wonder, what’s Finn going to be like at six?
What’s he going to be like at 3????

We’re so screwed.