holidays

Fall weather is very reluctant to visit us in south central Arizona. So we have to bring the fall spirit ourselves. A list of fall activities reminds me of the fun seasonal things we can still do despite the over-eager sun. The boys are old enough that they're excited to think about fall activities too which makes a family bucket list much more fun. We brainstormed ideas together with the boys one night after Maeve's bedtime. Some of the boys’ ideas are not quite fall themed (like "play with friends") but I love hearing what they come up with. Cedric... Read more →


I've long admired activity-based advent calendars seen at friend's houses or online. This is the first year we've had one for our family and I'm smitten with it! I had been eying reusable fabric advent calendars on Etsy but hadn’t found one that I absolutely loved. I wanted something easy to store and in a simple, modern-ish style. Then, I came across the perfect one when I wasn't even thinking of them while browsing the beautiful Food52 shop (so sorry, they seem to be out of stock - check back next season!). I often second guess myself and hesitate before... Read more →


In addition to the best pimiento cheese, there's one other family recipe that I crave around the holidays: my Aunt Peta's spicy-sweet pecans. But first we need to clear up a couple of things. For one, my Aunt Peta wants to make sure I tell you that this is not actually her recipe. She remembers having these pecans at a school or church function and then asking for the recipe. But for all of my life I've associated these spicy-sweet pecans with my Aunt Peta and so I think of this recipe as hers. Plus I always love a recipe... Read more →


Thanksgiving might be my favorite holiday because it's a day all about loved ones and food. It's also a really fun holiday to plan and planning is one of my favorite things. There's browsing recipes, thinking about table decor, deciding who will make what, and planning fun things for the kids to do. We're hosting Thanksgiving this year so I have lots to plan! I love keeping a Thanksgiving Pinterest board for collecting recipes and ideas. Who's gathering There will be our family of four, Chris's parents, and Chris's sister's family. All together that's five adults and five kids (ages... Read more →


This might seem strange, but I'm already thinking of Christmas...next year. But then you remember it's ME, and planning for the distant future is my jam. And actually this idea came from Erica, my seasonal decor mentor. On a holiday podcast episode a couple years ago she mentioned making notes about what worked well and didn't during the holidays. Then she tucks that note into the holiday decor to find it next year. Isn't that such a genius future high five? Obviously I loved this. So I wanted to collect my thoughts and notes and what worked well, and didn't, this past Christmas. Read more →


Every year I enjoy creating our family Christmas card and sending them all across the country, from San Francisco to Brooklyn, and even to Canada! I designed our cards myself again this year and I'm so happy with how they turned out. Here are our cards in previous years: 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014 & 2015 (so many!). Originally I thought I would do a collection of photos from the year like I did in our card last year. But then I remembered the awesome family picture we took together during Chris's birthday trip to Prescott. Plus the fact that our... Read more →


Hi friends! This week I'm taking a little break from blogging but I wanted to pop in to say hi and wish you a happy 4th of July week if you are celebrating in the U.S. and a happy first week of July regardless. I hope you are having a fabulous summer! It's really hot here but I'm trying very hard to stay positive. Just three more months to go! (Woooooo) We've been able to enjoy being outdoors in the early morning and in the shade of the late afternoon so that is definitely helping. This week I just have... Read more →


January is all about dreaming and planning for the year. In February it's time to get serious and make those dreams happen. This month I'm looking forward to spending lots of time outside and enjoying candlelight in darker evenings while they last. And if we could have just one or two rainy days I would be so thrilled. I'm trying to be very present and appreciative of my favorite time of year in order to stay positive through the hot, hot summer (I'm already feeling a little anxious about it!). + Go for a family bike ride at least three... Read more →


What a year 2013 has been! A year ago we rang in the new year with a few other very pregnant friends. This year we had an early get together with the same friends, played dominoes while our boys crawled (and one of them walked!) around and we called it a night by 7 (because you don't mess with the bedtime routine). 2013 has been incredible, joyful, challenging, rewarding, and full. I'm so thankful for and proud of all that it held. In 2014 I'm crazy excited to watch Dashiell grow and learn, to get to know myself as a... Read more →