24 October 2016


Theo got to experience the joy (read tears) of a bounce house.
 2016 week forty-two

But V was brave enough to do the bounce house obstacle course by herself. She was SO proud. She did it like 10 times.

We met up with some friends. V gets along so well with these friends. Please don't move away. 

They loved looking in the Tortoise and Hare pen.

I let V play with the pumpkin innards. She made a huge mess which usually bothers me enough to stop her, but I just ignored it and let her be little and messy. And wonderfully, she accidentally separated all the seeds neatly into a bowl. Awesome! Permissive for the win. They made some fantastic toasted pumpkin seeds. 

Throwback to college pumpkin bread feasting with roommates. One semester we made probably 15 or 16 loaves of pumpkin bread. Our freezer was stocked with golden spicy deliciousness. 

Wednesday we went to our local high school homecoming parade. We had such a fun time.

They were so generous with their candy. Vera was prancing around wild eyed in candy showers. 

Theo snagged a box of nerds that he sucked into a wet mess and they exploded all over him. 

Lolly pop number 5 or 6 at this point. Theo's sweet smile. 

The swim team float threw V a penguin hat. She hasn't taken it off yet.

Notice the penguin hat is still on the next day. We finally met our neighbors (we've both lived here for 4 years. This reflects poorly on me.) and V had so much fun playing with Angela. They invited us over and they played around watching Micky Mouse in Spanish and discovering Mexican candies. I labored for 40 minutes trying my hardest to remember ANY Spanish verbs. So I mostly spoke in poorly accented Spanish nouns. But I was also kind of proud of how much information I was able to glean. Truthfully my brain was fighting between French verbs and Spanish nouns.

When we eat any meal there is a 3 foot radius of space around Theo. Any time I forget and leave anything in that danger zone he immediately grabs it and either throws it on the ground or puts it in his mouth. 

My children haven't received the memo that it is cooling off. 

Matt's family always paints pumpkins. We didn't collaborate but both painted black cats. I'm sure you can't tell who painted which.

Our garden is still producing! 

He's been on this table at the library for over 10 minutes. He's thrown everything on the floor and is shouting at everyone who passes.


"Mama, what would happen if I would be in the room where it happened?" (We've been listening to a lot of Hamilton around here this week.)

"Mama, if you hear me do this then I'll get in trouble so can you please make sure you don't hear me?"

"I was playing doctor with papa. But I'm really not a real doctor." (Oh, you don't say.)

One day Theo woke up from nap before V did. When I got him out of his crib he was straining against me trying to face V's bed while yelling "BAH!" at her. I took him into the hall to change his diaper. The second I finished strapping him up he sprang from me and crawled as fast as he could to her bed, climbed up and plopped himself down on her face yelling, "BAH!" the whole time. It was so cute that he just wanted her to be awake with him.

"oooooOOOOOOooooooooh" (Theo mimics the sounds of fire engines when he hears them pass by. We live pretty near the firestation, so we hear them frequently.)

"Theo is grateful for his wagon." (Every night we try to remember to ask V what was good about her day, and try to tell her what we're grateful for. Every night without fail she says Theo is grateful for his wagon. He never plays with a wagon...)

"Why is this book in French?" (At the library we were reading a little Brave book that was narrated by Merida. I tried to read it in a Scottish accent. Clearly she wasn't impressed.)

Me, "Are you being sneaky?"
V, "No."
Me, "Are you hiding that toy behind your back so I cant see it?"
V, "Yes."
Me, "That is being sneaky."

(I found V using a paintbrush to smear Elmers glue around on the table.)
Me, "What is that?"
V, "I don't know."
Me, "I think you do. What is it?"
V, "I don't know. Well, I think maybe it might be probably a little bit like the glue stuff."
Me, "Is it glue?"
V, "Yes."

Whisk = Whisker as in, "Mama can I please use your whisker."

17 October 2016


Vera goes to a little group preschool once a week. She really enjoys it. 
2016 week forty-one

We had a big family dinner last Sunday. We had a fancy hot dog bar. It was a lot of fun, and the weather was perfect so we could all be outside. 

Sometimes these two are impossibly cute.

This October has been quite lovely with intermittent cool mornings. Walks are so much more fun with bundled up babies and cool breezes. 

Halloween decor. Everyone has been poked in the eye at least twice so far.

We got this super fun pasta from Trader Joes. They cook up so lovely. I made a pumpkin pasta sauce for them and I internally squealed with excitement on the pumpkin on pumpkin delight.

Baby feeding himself snack.

More bats, because I love them.

On Saturday, Theodore turned one! He's getting so big and fun and such a joy to have around. We could use less destruction and climbing on things though. He'll climb up something quite high, balance standing up, and then clap with pleasure before I rescue him.

Baby cupcake. Look at those eyes. 

We really had a dreamy afternoon outside in the breeze eating our celebratory cupcakes. 

He was especially pleased.

That night we had our annual Apple Party. 

A lot of fun and a lot of sweets as usual. The cider shakes and sassy apple cotton candy were on point this year. 

V discovered that the underside of our couch cushions were uhm, quite gross. So I gave her the vacuum and taught her the joy of sucking away messes. 


Vera, "Mama, can I chain you?"
Me, "No."
Vera, "Can I chain Theo?"
Me, "No."
Vera, "But I just really need to chain someone! I just really love to chain people!"

"Oh Giraffe, I'm sorry you're just going to have to carry this. It's just going to be a bummer."

"But I'm only three! I'm not good at listening yet! When I'm four or five I'll be a good listener. I just cant listen now because I'm only three."

"This is just my favorite foot. I love this foot."

Me, "Vera, can you hear me?"
Vera, "No. I don't think so."


"I just have one more intention. Please let me finish."

"Wow! How can we possibly get down from here?!"

"But, why? Why Mama why do they live in a yellow submarine?"

"Ok, Mama but dont let any bugs crawl on me, like skwerpiens."

"Papa, do you want to feel the couches bones?"

10 October 2016


Costco has the best things to climb on. 

2016 week forty

In honor of the anniversary of the Gilmore Girls premiere, cafe's all over the country were transforming into Luke's Diner for the day. My good friend Margie and I had to see what this was all about. Well, they had this guy... And that's about it. Haha. 

Our kids happily entertained themselves in the landscaping while we got to visit. 

Once inside we found the Luke's sign that this cafe decided was better on the couch than on the window. And after a lovely hour and a half of visiting, we got to the front of the line, and they ran out of promotional cups. Wah, wah. Oh well. We had a good time anyway. 

Loving the Moose at Ikea. Vera kept shouting "AKEA! AKEA!" the whole time. 

My mom and John came for a visit this weekend and we drove around doing fun things almost constantly. Steel City Pops was definitely a highlight. 
They both really enjoyed getting to walk around the Gas Monkey garage too.

We had the most satisfying autumn weather while they were in town. Look at that morning light! 

Vera was really sad to see Oma and Grandpa John leave. These two were very very happy to have them in town. 

And I made a beautiful almond apple custard pie for dessert on their last night. We were so full of delicious sweets and treats though, this was probably overkill. 

Beautiful siblings. You can't hear it, but Vera is whining about wanting to take her sweater off because she's "so hot and sweaty." I don't believe you. It's 50 degrees outside. 


"Oh Hi little bird! Are you flying to Target too little bird?

Me, "Vera, please put this away for me."
Vera, "I just CANT do anything. Because my HEART is just gone!"
Me, "Where did it go?"
Vera, "It went outside and ran away. My heart just ran away I just cant. do. anything."

"Giraffe loves to eat her toots. It's her favorite part of tooting."

Matt is going to be mad that I took this video vertically.

03 October 2016


She dressed herself this day. But honestly this was outfit 2/10 for the whole day. My favorite part was the "cape" that she insisted "looked SO nice with my sweater!" She also posed like this when I asked her if I could take her photo.

 2016 week thirty-nine

There are very few things that bring so much joy in our lives than child-sized baskets at the grocery store. 

Bagging up cinnamon apple chips while the kids play outside in the cool morning air.

Our garden is still going. We pickled a bunch of cucumbers and banana peppers last week. And there are still several dozen peppers growing on my plants. 

The early mornings have started to cool off and Vera and Theo have really enjoyed just pottering around outside in the delicious coolness. 

On Tuesday Matthew and I got to go to a live taping of one of my favorite NPR show "Ask Me Another." We had so much fun.  

I had never been to The Majestic Theater before. It was so beautiful on the inside. We couldn't stop staring at the ceiling.

It was so ornate and luxe. I just loved it. 

Theo is so blurry like he's flying away. I melt when I see their loving eyes.

He loves his bike so much. He will zip across the yard as quickly as he can shrieking and laughing wildly if I pretend to chase him. 

The girl who begs and cries and sneaks to wear sweaters and jackets and multiple layers of dress up all summer long has now started begging and crying and sneaking to be naked or wearing next to nothing now that it's cooling down. I dont get it. 

On Thursday this week we had an extra tasty dinner. I made some homemade noodles with an eggplant tomato sauce. We had grilled banana peppers, and sauteed "orient wonder" green beans from our garden (they were almost a foot long!) and some bread and charcuterie and pickles plate. So many of our favorite things. 

Happily, this is what almost our entire weekend looked like. V has embraced the Halloween books with gusto. 


"I'm just over here cookin' cakins!"

When we went to Trader Joes the man at the check out gave Vera a baby pumpkin free of charge. She loved it so much. She immediately lost it. But before she lost it she went on and on about how much she loved it. "This little pumpkin is Giraffes baby sister. They are sisters and they both came out of my tummy and then I bought them at the store. I will name her Scarecrow. Giraffe will love her so much." Later she got another pumpkin and named it Pear Spices.

She's started this thing when we are in the middle of a meal she will want to get down from her chair to give me a hug. It's sweet but she's also just trying to get out of her seat and play around. So we compromise by letting our hands hug each other. "Your hand can be the mama and my hands can be the little children. Look at them hug."

"This is my skeleton. I will name him Scarrit." (pronounced like 'scare-it' I thought it was a clever name for a skeleton.)

"Papa, will you tell me a store about a dolphin eating our family?"

"In April it will be my first birthday and I will turn 4. Mama! I will be 24!!!"

"This is the biggest EVER cucumber!"