keeping things simple.

Saida recently celebrated her 3rd birthday.  In my opinion, 3 marks the year for the first official “friend party.”   I was excited about this milestone for her, but admittedly torn about how to proceed.  So I found myself with a choice to make, a {likely} stress producing, Pinterest and blog inspired, greatly satisfying, pat-myself-on-the-back party or just a plain ole’ party.  I do really enjoy throwing a big, well-coordinated bash but it feels a bit more daunting these days… I think it helped to be single and childless, able to sleep and recover as much as needed.

So I did it.  I went theme-less.  That’s right, no theme, no coordinating handmade party goods, just a simple play-date style lunch, some pin the tale on the donkey, balloons and dollar store decorations.

And it was lovely!  Everyone seemed to have a great time, and I wasn’t exhausted!  YAY!  Keeping it simple just may be the secret to surviving these baby years!

The invitations came out simple.simple.simple.  They were really the beginning of my non-theme theme which sort of developed as I created them.


The doodle is hand drawn with fine tip sharpies.  That’s it.  DSCN1258

Each one came out with it’s own unique swirly style.  Saida did have one request… pink.  Shocking.  Who is this ultra-feminine child?  She must get it from Ben’s side.DSCN1259


doodle pink birthday invitation

Just simple simple.   I can see some potential to glitz them up.  Maybe some glitter, or handwritten text.  Feel free to copy and update this idea, I was thinking of so many variations as I worked them, I would love to see how they can be improved!

Want help creating yours?  Contact me through the shop tab above!

Oh and with all my extra time, I was able to make her cake and frosting from scratch.  This was a first for me.  Thanks to Sweetapolita  they were totally yummy… and funfetti.

DSCN1282One thing that was planned from the start… I had to make our traditional ice cream come cupcakes…  A family birthday treat dating back to my grandmother…  Remember when you used to bring baked goods to school on your birthday before allergies and things got so crazy?  This was my go to… Every.Year.  I just loved the novelty.


Saida has already requested them for next year 🙂


thinking of faraway friends

thinking of old roommates and careless times

remembering that they didn’t feel so careless then

thinking of the rarity of real, true friendship

the richness of true community, how we were so blessed to share it.

thinking of times to come.

how different things are

thinking how I miss they way they were

thinking that I love the way she says “this is my family” and recites each of our names.

knowing it is different now.

hoping she has a “stand-in family” when she is in her searching years

praying that they will be as nurturing, encouraging, admonishing and lovely as mine.

i am thinking of you today.




three words ending in “ity”

design sponge via pinterest

humility… when i thought i was doing everything right, i didn’t take into account, that if things went differently, i would be doing them all wrong.

vanity… 2 months later, still sweating more than normal, still looking a bit pregnant, walking around with camille in an ergo that is causing lots of extra bulges and even more sweat, covered in crumbs and spit up stains.  BUT, no one is crying, whining or pouting and i am drinking a java’s iced latte, so… i could care less.

brevity… just heard someone refer to this stage of parenting as “the sweet phase”  and while yes, i realize that it is nice to have my kids be carryable, and not know that they can talk back to me, and still, for the most part, adore me… i think many remember this phase with rose colored glasses.  it has it’s moments… both of glorious perfection, sweet little girl laughs and kisses, but it is also rife with sleep deprivation, tantrums, poop and pee.  either way it will be over soon, so i am trying to act accordingly.

“gora-vise” and other words I want to be able to hear in my mind in 10 years

Lusting after a more organized photo collection and better catalogued memories lately.  One of the projects that I am hoping to finally cross off my list is getting photos into albums, with memories jotted down and also updating Saida’s baby book.  I am TERRIBLE at cataloging our memories.  My love for paper leads many to believe that I am a scrapbooking pro… but this is sooo not the case.  Don’t believe me??  I have had this project on my “long list” since we were married…almost 4 years ago!!!!

I can feel the time slipping away like sand in an hour glass and I know. know.know. that if I don’t get on this now, I never will.

Until I figure out how I am going to do this and cross it off my list, you will probably be hearing a lot about my moments and memories that I am wanting to capture.  Partly because it gives me an outlet to deal with this desire without having to actually pull out all the old photos and figure out what to do with them all.  But also because I can just feel the moments with Saida slipping away.  I am finding myself just wanting to spend every little minute with my cheeky, growing up girl.

Is it because she is growing so fast?

Is it because I am nesting?

Or is it because I can feel that once our new lady arrives, so much of my attention will be diverted, and six months will go by and I will not have noticed all the little nuisances of her big sister?

Ok, that last one makes me cry a little.

She is growing.  She won’t stop.  There is nothing I can do to slow it down.  I am not even sure I want to.  But I can’t help this feeling of wanting to grab at all these little moments, bundle them up in my arms lay over the top of them, so they can never escape.  Hold them in my white knuckled grip and never let them fly away.  Because I know that one day, she will look at me and roll her eyes, and she will want to walk far ahead of me so it doesn’t look like we are together and she will want to keep secrets from me.  And I never want to forget now.  When she grabs my cheeks in her hands and pulls me in for a kiss and with our faces a mere inch apart, she grins from ear to ear and asks if I will sing shunshine and gora-vise (edelweiss) and tells me by rubbing her nose to mine that she wants to give Eskimo kisses to her baby sister.  I always want to remember getting under the damepit (blanket) to watch State Fair on a gloomy rainy day, watching her become instantly memorized by a new musical and singing along to songs that has just heard, wondering if she is always going to like music and dance as much as she does now.  I always want to remember the weight of her body so safe and securely resting against mine.

How do I store away that moment yesterday when she grabbed a cake beater and potato masher on the way out the door?  I just need to be able to recall how my heart smiled so huge when, after I told her “no, we can’t take these outside,” she gently explained to me that it was raining, and we needed brellas.  As she lifted that beater up over her head and handed me the masher to do the same, I decide she has convinced me to rescind my “no,” and off we go, our kitchen utensils turned umbrellas lifted high on a sunny afternoon.  I am falling in love with her imagination as she tells all our neighbors about the rain.  All of a sudden, things are taking a new shape to her, she take a letter P off the fridge and holds it in her fist with the only the bump at the top exposed, attempting to sing “spoonful of sugar” to the best of her memory.  “oh, is that your bird” I say, and she beams with delight.

I am so thankful for this little girl.  So over the moon with her.  So amazed that my life is so blessed.  Some days I just can’t believe that I have this family, this house, this little piece of life to call my own.

So I will be thankful.  And follow Christ and look for ways to share it, empty it rather than trying to grip it and hold it all for myself.

And maybe, just maybe, with my pictures in albums or not, I will be able to remember these old moments while drinking in the new beauty that surrounds us where ever life takes us.

design fail

Maybe you have, or maybe you haven’t noticed, but I have fallen behind on my design challenge.  One of my strengths is being able to recognize my faults pretty quickly and without much drama.  And this my friends, is one of them.  Probably should NOT have given myself more to do during this season of life.

After last weekend was spent moving the little lady into her big girl bed, as well as enjoying some Mother’s Day time, I realized that I was not going to have an invite ready for Monday’s post.  And here, an entire week has vanished away from me again.  I had the best intentions of getting both designs up today, but alas…it is not in the stars.  My apologies if you have been hoping to see these designs.  The good news is, that while the blog is silent, the life is happening!  We have been sharing some wonderful moments as a family, enjoying the weather and getting ready for baby.  Pulled all the baby girls clothes out this weekend and sorted and sorted.  And with my recent anemia diagnosis (boo hoo)… I am realizing that my are not just due to laziness (yea, I have to work on not seeing it that way), or busyness, or a lack of ability to do it all, but to an iron deficiency, throwing me off my game.

So the moral of this story?  I do hope to get these invites finished and posted, but I am not promising anything.  I am feeling sort of ready to finish up with my current clients and be done with the biz side of life for awhile.  I do rather enjoy spending my limited amount of energy doing the nesting things.  And soaking in all the moments I have with my Sweet Saida before I have the joy/obligation/challenge/duty/honor of sharing my attention with her new little sister.  Today we made these granola bars and played the morning away filling and dumping buckets of water and putting our toes in the freezing sprinkler water.  Of course, while we were out there, I thought that I should also do some weeding and sweeping of all the pesky windmills all over the patio… and my hips and low back are telling me all about the stupidity of that decision.

Here are some shots of the past few weeks of spring, a growing little girl and a growing belly.

kite day at the beach

loving sand in her hands


an evening at the park

another belly shot, i can still see my toes

painting a room for lil’ sis

working in the yard