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YOU ARE MY WILD

He’s the biggest crush of my life.

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His crossed legs get me every time. Every. Time.

“…I am his open arms, he is my running leap,
I am his way home, he is my new path…
I am his quiet place, and he is my wild.”

Posted in You are my Wild.


I’VE BEEN BUSY BUYING SHOES AND CANDY CORN

Seriously though. I feel as though all I have accomplished over the course of the last month is to purchase multiple pairs of shoes for my Little and eat candy corn. Because it is October and that is what you should do in October. Eat. Candy. Corn.

Proof.

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Wait, should I NOT be proud of the fact that I downed this almost completely by myself?

Well, between handfuls of sweet goodness my ever growing child jumped a shoe size. So to keep his cute (and fat!) little feet from turning into those of a bound Geisha, I ran out and bought him casserole dishes, I mean enormous shoes. When did he stop being a baby? Instead, he is running around like a zombie – all stiff limbed and wobbly. He thinks he struts in his cool-guy Converse and moccasins, but really there is more careening happening than anything else. I can’t help but stop and yell at anyone who happens by “Look! I made a person! A real, walking, TALKING, person!” You would think I was the first person to accomplish this ridiculous task. I mean, come on…

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Now we just need to teach him that screaming at the top of his lungs “HI DADADADA!” is not the way to get his dad’s attention. But apart from keeping our Little Mister shod, our fall has been swamped with home improvements. For example, we took care of this situation in our kitchen…

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All of my siblings are quaking in fear that this will be their Christmas gift from us this year. I wonder who it will be… Abbey? I think this would absolutely MAKE your house. You’re welcome.

We also handled the overwhelming shade of yellow that was consuming EVERY SINGLE WALL in our home. And yes. The rumors are true that I painted my dining room black. Well, wrought iron. I cannot wait to share it with you! I am waiting for a few last design elements to fall into place and I will be posting some of our updates. So stay tuned!

And in the meantime, thank you for staying with me while life has taken us for such a wild ride the last two years. In the next few weeks as I head back to work, I suspect my writing will actually become more consistent as I will finally be back into a work schedule that will hold me more accountable to my days. None of us can wait for Work Annie to come back in all of her organized glory. Ha! Happy (early) Friday! xoxo

Posted in Life.


YOU ARE MY WILD

I love that he is all boy, and yet loves to wear a pretty necklace once in awhile.

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“…I am his open arms, he is my running leap,
I am his way home, he is my new path…
I am his quiet place, and he is my wild.”

Posted in You are my Wild.


INTERIORS: AND THEY LAUGHED AT ME!

You guys. So we bought this vintage house recently (Insert eye roll and the question, How many times is she freaking going to tell us this?!?) I know, I know. But we are just now getting to our list of projects to upgrade it from something that used to be cool until someone got a hold of it in the 90′s and decided to add that rad track lighting in the kitchen. And yellow paint. ON EVERY SINGLE WALL. Oh, and have I mentioned the textured stucco on the basement walls. Like I said, rad.

Anyway, my boy and I have spent considerable time picking our paint colors for the main floor. But the bedrooms and office were kind of left to me – well, duh. It’s what I kind of do for a living. But still, I have been feeling the pressure – especially for the office. Until I stumbled on some incredible inspiration for pink walls. Oh. My. Gosh. I was/am absolutely confident in the color decision. And while my boy wasn’t exactly jumping up and down yelling “yes, yes, yes! that’s what I would have chosen too!”, he was not aggressively voicing an opinion against it. Until the painters arrived yesterday with the wall paint after days of trim and ceiling work. And do you know what happened? They all ganged up and LAUGHED AT ME over the Ballerina Pink office walls! The nerve! The jerks! They were such BOYS about it!

And then I started questioning my decision. What the hell was I thinking? Pink walls? In the office? I wouldn’t even use pink on the walls of a nursery for a girl! So I went back to my original inspiration board and remembered that I am so right on with this decision. You guys. It is going to be amazing… Just wait…

And you jerks who laughed at me… well… you’ll probably never get it.

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Here are some other inspiring rooms centered around PINK!

P.S. Our painters have been amazing, and I would love to recommend them to anyone in the Minneapolis area who are in need!

[Inspiration courtesy of HGTV Magainze September 2013]

Posted in Interiors, Uncategorized.


RAISE ‘EM RIGHT

It’s funny how you spend your entire childhood gearing up for adulthood – learning your letters, tying your shoes, ingraining “please” and “thank you.”  We race forward through our academic years and life experiences. It feels as though no time has passed, and suddenly we are parents ourselves, and responsible for ANOTHER PERSON. Not just to keep them alive, but to shape them into a somewhat normal human being who also knows their letters, how to tie their shoes and basic forms of appropriate communication.

And yet – there is always an ‘and yet’ – the same way a 93 year old claims to mentally feel like a young man in the prime of his life, I feel as though I am still a child who lost her way along the path and wound up in her thirties. How on earth do you prepare for being a parent? How in the world do you shape another little person into a healthy adult? And please don’t tell me your favorite parenting book, because while I am a firm believer in research, I also know firsthand that all of the books in the world do not prepare you for the first time you walk into your son’s room and he has smeared the contents of his diaper on every available surface in, on and around his crib. Or the disbelief you feel every single time you try to brush his teeth and he turns into a character from Michael Jackson’s Thriller music video.

But today as I was ruminating on the weight of being a grown up and the responsibilities therein, as well as the need to do EVERYTHING PERFECTLY… (Type A, anyone?) I remembered a Kipling poem from my literary days of college that talked about being a person worth knowing. So I looked it up, and I want to memorize every single line. And then I want my Little to do the same. Once he knows what words are. Because there is so much wisdom contained in these lines. But bottom line? Life is about trying to be the best version of ourselves.

So if I do nothing else right when it comes to Mr. Grey Bird, I want to teach him to simply try to be a good person who accepts the challenges in life, thinks broadly and knows how to love people.

IF

If you can keep your head when all about you
Are losing theirs and blaming it on you;
If you can trust yourself when all men doubt you,
But make allowance for their doubting too:
If you can wait and not be tired by waiting,
Or, being lied about, don’t deal in lies,
Or being hated don’t give way to hating,
And yet don’t look too good, nor talk too wise;

If you can dream—and not make dreams your master;
If you can think—and not make thoughts your aim,
If you can meet with Triumph and Disaster
And treat those two impostors just the same:.
If you can bear to hear the truth you’ve spoken
Twisted by knaves to make a trap for fools,
Or watch the things you gave your life to, broken,
And stoop and build’em up with worn-out tools;

If you can make one heap of all your winnings
And risk it on one turn of pitch-and-toss,
And lose, and start again at your beginnings,
And never breathe a word about your loss:
If you can force your heart and nerve and sinew
To serve your turn long after they are gone,
And so hold on when there is nothing in you
Except the Will which says to them: “Hold on!”

If you can talk with crowds and keep your virtue,
Or walk with Kings—nor lose the common touch,
If neither foes nor loving friends can hurt you,
If all men count with you, but none too much:
If you can fill the unforgiving minute
With sixty seconds’ worth of distance run,
Yours is the Earth and everything that’s in it,
And—which is more—you’ll be a Man, my son!
—Rudyard Kipling

And to somewhat lighten the mood, here is a snapshot from a few weeks ago proving just how hard it is to brush my Little’s teeth. Good. Lord. Yes, he learned that face from me.

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Posted in Baby, Life.


INTERIORS: CRAVE OR SAVE

You guys! Long time! I have been a little busybody lately with a singular focus revolving around updating our home. I have been picking paint colors, and then re-picking them. Researching light fixtures and deciding which furniture will stay, what will go and what will be added. The brainstorming, planning and inspiration boarding that has been taking place! Oh, and the discussing of plans with my boy until his ears have just about bled and he has begged for mercy. I feel like a kid in a candy store! Or a vampire at a blood bank! Sorry… I have been re-watching Vampire Diaries in preparation for a new series this fall. Um, can you even believe the finale last season with Stefan? Man!

Anyway… With all of the interior design upheaval in my life of late, I suddenly realized I have been breaking one of the cardinal rules in making a house a home. Scent. I am a firm believer in the power of a good smelling home. Seriously! My house can be in shambles, but as long as the counters are wiped off and a welcoming candle is filling the air with fresh smells, life feels manageable.

So do I crave or do I save?

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Anthropologie classic Capri Blue Volcano… or the equally as delicious Island Moonlight from Target? Both? Sure!

Posted in Interiors.


YOU ARE MY WILD

You truly are my wild, little bird.

While in Duluth this weekend, my Little basically demanded to get into Lake Superior. We had the thought that a leisurely evening stroll on the beach would be a great way to end a fun day. But Grey? He. Had. To. Get. In. The water was 50 degrees. Fahrenheit. What is it with kids and their tolerance of absolutely freezing, thigh chapping water? Steve and I had a tussle over who would go in after him.

And yes, our baby wore that gaping mouthed grin all weekend long. Ha!

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“…I am his open arms, he is my running leap,
I am his way home, he is my new path…
I am his quiet place, and he is my wild.”

Posted in You are my Wild.


STYLE: IT’S ALMOST TOO MUCH

Recently a friend of mind headed to my home-away-from-home (NYC! What up!?!) and asked me to put together an itinerary for her. Her husband would be in meetings all day long, which would leave her alone in the city with oh so many hours to fill with – what else – shopping. And as any true fashionista can attest, the best shopping is done alone. Sorry fellas, we love you, but you distract us ladies when it comes to focusing our needs, wants and lusts.

As I pulled together my list of favorite haunts, I was thrilled with the opportunity to introduce her to Zara. Ah, Zara. Why can’t you head west? Mid-west to be specific. Granted, no location will ever top the one on 5th Avenue. When it opened a few years ago, I waddled my pregnant self through those sliding glass doors and experienced fashion nirvana. Multiple floors. Immaculate racks of beautifully displayed clothes. A KID’S SECTION. And the shoes. The shoes!

I have spent the last few weeks weeding through my closet as some items simply need to be retired, many of which are various pairs of shoes that have been well loved but certainly show their tiredness. So. Here are my top four fall picks from Zara that just might have to be mine. A classic flat for every day errands… Silver brogues that are a classic masculine style with an on-trend twist of color… CUT-OUT BOOTIES. Enough said… And a sexy, night out heel that will make anyone’s legs look miles long. Sexy mama!

ballerina flat cut out booties metallic heels silver brogues

But I must comment on a wedge I came across. It’s just… wrong. I know it is “in” and I know there are many a fashion forward woman rocking this look. But. Just. No.

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Oh, and my friend fell as madly in love with the brand as me. She even sent me a picture. Love!

Posted in Style.


TRA-LA-LA-BOOM-DE-AY

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My sweet baby Grey Bird turned 1 in June. He has been in our lives (outside of the womb at least) for an entire year. And yet there are days I still have to remind myself that this is my life now. Because how could it be that I have a child? Did that really happen? Am I old enough to have a kid? (Technically, yes.) Am I mature enough to have a son? (Probably not.) But somehow it has happened that we not only survived having a baby, moving across the country, starting new jobs, purchasing a home, moving again, and figuring out what the hell we are doing as parents… But it has happened that we are lucky enough to have the opportunity to have the best little boy I have ever met. I am forever a mother. He is forever my son.

Grey, you are our little bird. Our wild, fearless, joyful baby boy. Our hearts are full. Even when you scream in our faces because you don’t want your teeth brushed.

And so the party was a success considering our Little is only one and thus had absolutely no idea what was going on. Or why. That is why we decided to host a party for our families that included good food and great drinks – minus the grating themes and annoying games that will most likely be our party future once Grey has an opinion to offer. Although I did make the classic hostessing mistake of downing too many glasses of wine on an empty stomach while socializing. Thank goodness for hefty pulled pork sliders to fill in the gap!

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My incredibly talented sister and mom camped out at my home for the weekend and helped me pull it all together. And if you are in the market for a party or an event, you absolutely must hire my sweet sis as her desserts are always divine. She made vegan cupcakes taste like heaven. No small feat!

And of course we had the stereotypical Presenting of the Cake to our Little. It took him a moment to get into it, and then it was all systems go. A cake? For me? That I can shove into my face without restraint? Done and done.

This was only to be followed by the very Berenstain Bear type meltdown of too much birthday party. So good nights were said, and we continued to party on without him.

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Thank you, Kristen, for capturing the First Cake moment so beautifully!

Posted in Baby, Life, Uncategorized.


I WANT TO GO TO SO MANY PLACES

Italy…

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Greece…

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Ireland…

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France…

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What a wonderful world. Don’t you agree?

Posted in Happy, Life.