Being so close to Chattanooga you would think we would be more frequent visitors, but this was actually our first time to go together! I think when you do something a lot as a kid or it’s too close to home, it can lose some magic and novelty in your mind.
But all cities can grow and change and update while still having those familiar memories that conjure up your 4th grade field trip or a family vacation. The fact that family travel can resurrect the magic of old places through the eyes of your own child is another reason I love it! Travel with kids can also take you to little corners you otherwise wouldn’t go. (Itinerary included.)
One insane part of life is how your opinions of things can change on a dime. I was never really into the 4th of July celebrations for some reason. Maybe it's my love for so many other cultures or my dislike of the summer heat, but good ol' Independence Day just was never a highlight of my year. Don't ask me why! I know fireworks are fun! But turn all of that upside down now, because it will forever be one of my favorite days to celebrate with this little firecracker-angel-blessing being "Born on the 4th of July."
In 2016 I had a resolution of working harder to lift up others instead of being in my own emotions all of the time. On a day to day basis, we are all just trying to survive adult-life/mom-life that we hardly have time to make grand gestures for our friends beyond big milestones like baby showers or birthdays.
The Leslie-Knope-created "Galentine's Day" holiday is a perfect excuse or reminder to lift up your gal pals. Let's be real... most women being really emotional puts a big hurdle for female friendships. We keep tabs of things like "well they haven't initiated hanging out with me, and I've asked 2 times. Fine I guess they never want to hang out with me."
Well that's not how Leslie Knope thinks, my friends! She will bombard you with friendship and make a binder about all your favorite things. She doesn't take things personally and skulk back into a surface level friendship. It's definitely a lesson in being more intentional and thoughtful with your friends.
Bertha from Chic in Academia ran with this idea and hosted a fun "mom's night in" Galentine party at her house this month, and it turned out so sweet! I was able to do some calligraphy origami place cards for the dinner table, and they turned out exactly like I pictured in my head! whew!
We are big fans of snow days over here! They usually only come once or twice a year, so we don't usually have time to get sick of them. Our city also doesn't have enough salt trucks or plows to handle all of the icy roads, so we get to completely shut down for a day or two.
It's even better when no ice has weighed down power lines, and we are still cozy with all the comforts of home (internet, heat and all) like today.
Rowan wanted to sled like the big kids for the first time, so we had to improvise with a plastic storage box. It was a pretty good solution thanks to Zack's ingenuity, and he didn't topple out even once! I'm also proud of myself that I didn't take any pregnant-falls on the ice, even though everything is pretty much like ice skating.
I don't really have anything monumental to share other than our funny storage box idea.. hahaha! But I just wanted to remember this day, because it's been really fun. I also have a recent obsession with Enneagram tri-types and instincts this week, and I just really want ALL my friends to take Enneagram tests so I can know what everyone's dominant type (and wing) is. In between building snowmen, taking naps and playing board games, you should get on that right now and tell me what you are. If you don't, then I'll feel like a big piece of my friendships are missing -- like the type 4 wing 3 that I am. Ha!
I’m so happy that today Heather of My Life Well Loved asked me to share one of the most adorable, easy, and HEALTHY party treats I found this year.
When I would picture having kids, I thought I would have zero desire to ever do the whole Santa Christmas photo shebang. But then you really have one, and you want them to do ALL THE THINGS! Last year at Christmas, Rowan was just a wee thing, so this year was his first Santa experience.
Today is Black Friday, and the Christmas shopping season is official! Let me just start this post by saying I am very anti-toy. Okay not really... I know they are necessary for your child's development and happiness, but with a tiny house and Christmas just around the corner, I'm mildly stressing about it! Also, last Christmas was so easy with a 2-month old... we didn't buy him anything! haha.
Fast-forward a year-- Rowan just turned one in October, so we are pretty stocked on toys! I've had the urge to donate half of everything we own, but I already drive Zack crazy with my anxiety-driven purging.
So I was thinking, what toys can we give him that he will like the best and play with the longest? Some pretty schnazzy research a few years ago showed that when kids could make more discoveries on their own with an item, that their playtime was significantly longer. But okay... that still doesn't tell me which toys may be the best for different stages.
Again, I'm no expert, and observing my child is a singular, unique situation... but maybe these picks will help someone navigate picking fewer, better toys!
If I could've only had one type of toy for each stage, this is what I would choose...