Team Wharton

It's time to say goodbye to 2022. I'm in an end-of-year contemplative mood and am enjoying listening to podcast episodes and reading blog posts reflecting on the year. There are so many highlights and changes to celebrate from this past year. Some of the good changes brought challenges too, like relocating to a new city for a month and being out of our routines, living through a whole-home renovation, and keeping up with an ever-changing toddler and our big boys. Reflecting on the past year helps me to see and celebrate growth and accomplishments, big and small. This practice also... Read more →


September 2016 / April 2020 / September 2022 Chris and I love to plan for and talk about the future. But whenever we talk about a certain year and what we might be doing then I'm always asking, "So what grades will the kids be in then?" or "How old will we be?" Knowing those things gives me an anchor when peering into the future. Because otherwise all I can see are my 9, 7, and 2 year olds and I just picture myself older but still in the same season of parenting: playground sand dumped from shoes onto the... Read more →


Hello from the other side of a two-week fall break for the boys and from the downhill side of October! Just this week we can open the doors in the morning to let the cool air in and I pulled my favorite golden yellow cardigan from the closet. Instead of trying to catch up on October goals I thought I'd write a post in the style of the coffee date posts that Lindsay on Pinch of Yum shares occasionally and which I always enjoy. A coffee date is best started with coffee. Currently I'm brewing about 6 cups of coffee... Read more →


I'm back home in Gilbert after spending a month in Eau Claire, Wisconsin where we bought a house this spring. Before arriving I had never been to Eau Claire and had only been to Wisconsin once before several years ago. I felt a bit lonely and untethered when we first arrived, understandable since I have so much routine, familiarity, and community in Gilbert. But as we prepared to leave I felt sad to go. Chris and I both fell in love with Eau Claire and the surround region as well as our Eau Claire house and neighborhood. Now that I'm... Read more →


here's our house; we think it's so cute! I'm really looking forward to a fresh coat of paint at some point next year / University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire campus and Rod and Gun Park Yesterday we woke to rain. Glorious rain. When we checked the rain gauge on our deck in the afternoon it read nearly 1.5 inches which is a bit shy of a quarter of our annual rainfall in Arizona. I've become relatively acclimated to the very extreme climate in Arizona and so now marvel at the most mundane weather. We still have two weeks left in Wisconsin... Read more →


Hello from Wisconsin! We are here, we're settled into our house comfortably enough for now (although we still need a couch), and the weather has been glorious for this Arizona family (although perhaps a bit cool for locals). May was full to the brim, so much so that I wrote no blog posts although I had many on my mind. Things that happened in May included: + Putting new flooring throughout our entire house in Gilbert. This entailed Chris removing all the baseboards and carpet and then hiring someone to level the floors and install the flooring and baseboards. This... Read more →


It's a bit of a wild story that includes offering on a house we had only seen virtually and having never actually visited the city it's in. But we are thrilled to share that we've closed on a second home in the lovely Midwest city of... I wore my new Wisconsin shirt for our closing and afterwards we celebrated with iced coffees Eau Claire, Wisconsin! We are excited about the house, the city, and the time we'll spend there as a family. I'd love to share all the details with you. But first let me remind anyone who is new... Read more →


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 →


This post is also available as a podcast in which I read the post. Search for "rising shining" on most podcast platforms to listen. For the boys' fall break we took a family adventure to Colorado Springs and had a great time! Unfortunately the trip wasn't with the whole family as we had planned. Two days before we left, Maeve came down with RSV and a double ear infection, poor gal! So Chris stayed home with her so that I could go enjoy the trip I had spent so much time planning. After the initial disappointment of not having Chris... Read more →


Here's a fun perk of having a blog and podcast: when I want to ask lots of people for advice I have a way to do that! The title of the post says it all. We are seriously considering buying a second home in the Midwest. We are in the early stages of researching where that might be and I would love input from my readers and listeners who live in the Midwest or have spent enough time there to give advice. But first let me give you some more context: for a few years Chris and I have talked... Read more →