Worship in a facemask
Our return to church in the midst of COVID-19

Worship in a facemask  Our return to church in the midst of COVID-19

In the past few weeks, my church has been slowly and cautiously resuming in-person worship services. In an effort to love and protect attendees, and out of deference to authorities,  there is a litany of strange, “never in my wildest dreams did I ever imagine this” precautions. Once everything started shutting down, church was the

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COVID-19 Quarantine Week ten

COVID-19 Quarantine Week ten

What do you miss? This is something I think about a lot. We’re 10 weeks into this and I’m no longer even considering things like soccer practice or our gym membership. It occurred to me this week that the thing I miss is being in relationship without fear. Remember running into a friend at the grocery store

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Meet the chicks!
By: Mary

Meet the chicks!  By:  Mary

Note: This is Mary’s second blog. You can read the first one here. I took these photos about two weeks ago, when the chicks were still cute little balls of fluff.  They’ve feathered out a lot in the past two weeks and look a lot more reptilian, but the kids adore them all the same. 

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COVID-19 QUARANTINE WEEK SIX

COVID-19 QUARANTINE WEEK SIX

Every now and then it’s good to have a moment that helps you see how you’re coping. A litmus test, sort of. A gut check. For me it came during Mary’s Google meeting with her class. Mary wanted to show Brigham for show-and-tell, and when I went to get him I saw a huge gash

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Will the azaleas still bloom?

Will the azaleas still bloom?

We celebrated two friends’ birthdays this week. They were both distant celebrations — gifts left in the driveway, and a drive-by “party.” My kids liked loved being a part of these celebrations, but they made the wheels start turning. “I’m glad my birthday is in the summer…” I heard someone say from the backseat on

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Separate, together

Separate, together

Remember a week ago, when our kids were in school and we were carrying on with reckless behavior, like chatting over coffee or holding the door for strangers. Everything has changed, and in the past week the nation has quietly walked inside and closed their doors. (And then there are people who aren’t staying home.

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Christmas magic

Christmas magic

This Christmas season has felt more hectic than any other I can remember. I’ve been thinking a lot about what I could do differently to remove some stress, and I’ve come to the conclusion that no matter what I do, it will be hectic. Of course, I’m the first to admit that I could use

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Christmas morning 2019

Christmas morning 2019

Christmas morning anticipation — Tom gathers the kids on the stairs to read the Christmas story before rushing down to see presents. Before you get distracted by David and Mary’s looks of concentration, Thomas’s impish grin, or noticing that this is the first year Anna isn’t being held by one of us — before you

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I’m TWO!

I’m TWO!

There are a great many traditions I started when I had my first baby. Almost none of them have lasted through the fourth (R.I.P. baby book intentions) Some things I’ve mostly given up on (R.I.P. baby book intentions) and other things I haven’t gotten around to, but I still hold out hope (like making a

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Big sister, little sister

Big sister, little sister

Every morning the kids wake up way earlier than they have to. Then, for two full hours, they chase their tails until the five minutes before they have to leave for the bus when they scramble to find shoes and jackets. We have a checklist, we have alarms, we have reminders. And yet almost every

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A truly terrifying Halloween

A truly terrifying Halloween

BOO! Our family had a great Halloween, but as I sit typing this my eyelids are heavy and I’m feeling judged by the spooky decorations that became unseasonable 12 hours ago. I’m already feeling the busyness of the holidays and taking it as a reminder to try to slow down and enjoy the season. Perhaps this

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Sending my kids to school in the age of active shooters

Sending my kids to school in the age of active shooters

Yesterday Anna, my 22-month old, was throwing a tantrum. She threw herself onto the floor, curled her body over her knees with her forehead pressed to the carpet, and wailed. “Look!” Mary exclaimed. “Anna is doing a lockdown drill!” David and Mary laughed and laughed at the absurdity of a lockdown drill! At home! Ha!

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Looking back on summer vacation

Looking back on summer vacation

When we got home from Deer Valley, these guys were our welcoming committee. In the spring when I planted our garden, I was so excited about all the produce. I imagined big batches of roasted tomatoes every week, slices of tomatoes with every meal, and giving excess to neighbors and friends. But (maybe you’ve already

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Eight is GREAT!

Eight is GREAT!

Eight years ago Tom and I were going to bed and I started crying and told him some version of, “He’s never going to be born and I’m going to be pregnant for the rest of my life.” About four hours later my water broke, and about 14 hours after that David was born. Little

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Deep Cove, North Vancouver

Deep Cove, North Vancouver

Before we left for Vancouver we got a lot of recommendations for things to do and see, and places to eat. One thing we heard over and over was to go to Deep Cove. We went to Deep Cove on our very last day in Vancouver. We hadn’t intended it that way (Thomas’s fever day

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Lynn Canyon Park and Suspension Bridge (WHO COULD FORGET THE SUSPENSION BRIDGE!?!?)

Lynn Canyon Park and Suspension Bridge (WHO COULD FORGET THE SUSPENSION BRIDGE!?!?)

Aside from maybe birth announcements and that one time Thomas told his preschool teacher that his favorite thing is when Mommy lets him “ride dirty in the car,” few of my posts on Instagram have had as much of a reaction as this photo of the Lynn Canyon Suspension Bridge. https://www.instagram.com/p/Bzl-RzjFHMP/ All suspension bridges warrant a

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Our Vancouver adventure – Stanley Park

Our Vancouver adventure – Stanley Park

One of my favorite things about our visit to Vancouver was that my sister did all the planning. She emailed me an itinerary before our visit, but I’m not the type to burden myself with pesky things like referencing a schedule.  In the morning I would wake up, ask where we were going and what footwear

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Steveston Village

Steveston Village

Steveston Village is a small harbor town close to my sister’s house. It’s so close that we technically visited it on a “home day.” (We actually went the day Thomas was sick with a fever, during Anna’s nap.) I thought about lumping Steveston in with my home day post, but ultimately decided it deserved its

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Our Vancouver adventure – home days

Our Vancouver adventure – home days

We arrived in Vancouver late in the evening on Canada Day. We saw fireworks from our airplane windows when we were taxiing on the runway, and my brother-in-law drove us to his house through neighborhoods decorated with Canadian flags. It was something like 2 a.m. EST when we arrived, so my sister pointed at our

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10 year anniversary

10 year anniversary

Styling by the Pacific Ocean, pigtails by Mary, photo by Grammy, Tom’s sunscreen-face by himself, entire week of adventures  (including three meals a day for 14 people) planned and executed by my sister and her generous family. A few years ago, Tom mentioned that we should take a big trip to celebrate our tenth anniversary.

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Spring break at the passport office

Spring break at the passport office

If you’re looking for an extreme adventure to kickstart your spring break, might I suggest the passport office? Like most adventures, this one requires a lot of prep work, document-gathering, and planning. For weeks leading up to our trip to the passport office, Tom would tell me he needed to “do passport stuff,” and he’d

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So this is Christmas, 2018

So this is Christmas, 2018

I was grumpy all day Christmas Eve. The kids were acting like children, how dare they. They were overly excited and a little tired and do you know what excited, tired children do? They take the cushions off the couch even though their mother told them not to. They ping pong between being silly and

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Same, same, same, same

Same, same, same, same

This summer Anna blew through baby clothes sizes so fast I could barely keep up. 6-9 months, 9-12 months, 12-18 months. “Hmmm, this can’t be right,” I thought when shimmying a pair of 2T leggings on my 11-month old baby. I kept a very weather-inappropriate fleece sleeper in Anna’s drawer all summer because I wanted

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Vacation photo album

Vacation photo album

I’ve been blogging a ton this week — way more than I normally do. It’s because I feel a deadline looming to post everything from vacation, if I don’t do it this week, I never will. This is the last week of summer. In just a few days my two big kids will get on

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