Happy birthday to me

Today is my birthday. Whoopie! To celebrate being another year older I did the following:

Kissed this little dragon a thousand times.

Everett as dragon + me

Indulged with co-workers.

La Mie pastries

Had a margarita.

Raul's margarita

Was showered with gifts.

birthday gifts

And as I head to bed tonight I will say a quiet prayer for all that I have been given and all that is still to come.

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Obsessed: trick-or-treat

Since I was a little kid, Beggar’s Night was one you didn’t want to miss. Going door to door in full costume (usually with a turtleneck underneath because it was too cold) to tell jokes and collect candy is every kid’s dream. We would get home and dump our haul on the table and ogle all the sugary goodness, picking out a few pieces to devour with the rest going into baggies to enjoy for weeks to come. (More on the DSM joke-telling custom here via The Des Moines Register.)

With my birthday falling a few days before Halloween and a penchant for dressing up, it should come as no surprise that I’m particularly fond of this spooky holiday.


Scare Us Hill: Once again I am on the committee this year (yours truly designed the invites!), and the main event is going to be better than ever because Halloween falls on a Friday night! Got kiddos? Then you should definitely check out Scare Us Hill: Trick-or-Treat at Terrace Hill this Sunday!

Carter’s gear: Everett has many Carter’s pieces (you can’t go wrong with camo), but I particularly love their holiday specific collections. This year’s crop of Halloween gear for the little ones does not disappoint!

Personalized treat bag: I almost purchased this goodie bag for Everett, then realized he can’t even walk and doesn’t eat candy. Maybe next year…

Howell’s Pumpkin Patch: This has always been on our annual to-do list but this year was SO MUCH MORE FUN because Evie was along for the ride!


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I just returned from the HighEdWeb conference in Portland and I’m in love. It was my first time to the northwest coast and even though I spent most of my trip inside a hotel, I found time to do a little exploring.

VooDoo Donuts[Voodoo Doughnut - a must if you come to Portland]

Made in Oregon[what's in the bag? This hat from Pendleton]

Godzilla in Portland[a little HighEdWeb fun on the 23rd floor]

Lardo[lunch stop at Lardo]

Public Domain[still dreaming about the hand-crafted lattes from Public Domain]

Portland Oregon Old Town[found this gem on an early morning run along the river]

Old Town Pizza[eating pizza in a haunted elevator shaft at Old Town Pizza- check]

Everett smiling[missed this little ham like crazy!]

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Mommy mind: post-bath bliss

[I sit here writing this post while I'm hundreds of miles away at a work conference in Portland, Oregon. This is my first time being apart from Everett for consecutive days at a time and I am missing my little man like crazy. Especially his - and my - nighttime routine.]

Bathtime bliss 2

Like most households, we have a regular nighttime routine that consists of dinner, bath, book, bottle and bed. And it is my favorite time of the day. Well, that and when I walk into his room in the morning and am greeted by his huge grin and squeals.

My little guy has always loved bath time. Over the past few months the introduction of toys in the tub has become a necessity as he no longer wants to sit down. I’m amazed at how well I can now bathe him with one hand while holding on to him with the other. He is a slippery, squirmy one – exploring the spout, soap holder and undoing the drain stopper – but I wouldn’t have it any other way.

Once he is out and snuggled up into his hoodie towel, I get him diapered, lotioned and combed while singing Five Little Monkeys and playfully chewing on his feet. His baby comb over makes me weak in the knees.

He watches me intently as I fill up his bottle with warm water – giddy with excitement because he knows what is coming. As I walk with him on my hip back to his room, I must kiss him a thousand times. Give or take.

Once we settle in and he is properly folded into the crook of my arm, I read his favorite book aloud to him. Over exaggerating words and ‘peek-a-boos’, I make sure to stop and watch his reactions when I open up the flaps to uncover words underneath for the hundredth time. With every giggle he gives me, I relax more and more into my role.

He guzzles down his bottle as I hold him as close to me as possible – inhaling his sweet scent and soaking up every minute of our last cuddle session for the day. During these few fleeting moments, I am always flooded with emotions.

“Am I doing a good job?”
“How can I possibly love anything more than him?”
“Can he stay this small forever?”

Those are just a few of the hundreds of thoughts that run through my mind while holding him close in those quiet post-bath cuddles. But every session ends the same. With a kiss, an ‘I love you’ and a promise for another day together.

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Obsessed: mad for plaid

I’m blaming my newest obsession on the fact that temps are rapidly dropping and I’ve been looking at far too many log home interior decor photos on Pinterest. Those two things combined with my penchant for all things holiday and festive catalogs arriving on the regular, and it should come as no surprise that I want to live in a plaid world.


Faribault for Target: I’ve been noticing a lot of these wool blankets used as comforters for log home bedrooms. So is it a coincidence that as soon as we bought our new house this collaboration is coming out? I think not.

Buffalo check rain boots: These would be the perfect fix for the unseasonable rain we’ve been getting lately. Plus, they’re just darn cute.

Uniqlo down coat: A packable puffer jacket in plaid. Say that three times fast.

Mossimo Supply Co. bag: Weekend at grandma’s done right with this plaid carryall.

Plaid for Everett: There is nothing cuter than a little boy in plaid, and Carter’s seems to always get it right. I have a feeling my little man will be decked out in their holiday shop gear for the next few months.

Pendelton tartan mugs: I have wanted these mugs since I first laid eyes on them last year on the Cupcakes and Cashmere blog. I may have to bite the bullet…

Lands’ End stewart plaid: I received their recent catalog and about freaked out about this plaid colorway. I. Want. It. All.

Xhilaration plaid baseball hat: The perfect plaid topper to cover up those bad (or in my case greasy) hair days.


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My little pumpkin

It was perfect fall weather this past weekend so we loaded up on festive fun, including:

A trip to the Downtown Farmers’ Market – train ride included.

A run in with a perfect little pumpkin.

IMG_7721 IMG_7724

An outing to our local pumpkin patch, Howell’s, with the cousins.

IMG_7739 IMG_7771 IMG_7782

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Ten months


Evie’s faves:

standing up during bathtime
getting into literally everything (see above photo)
saying HEY with a wave
getting tickled under the arm

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