A winter wonderland

A winter wonderland

It’s kind of nice living in a place that completely shuts down when it snows. We only get snow a few times each year, so even the mildest dusting sends everyone screaming indoors, arms full of all the bread and milk they could stuff into their grocery carts. Schools close. Events are cancelled. It’s awesome.

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Reference materials

Reference materials

I don’t often given parenting advice here. But. If you insist. My top two parenting tips are: 1. Hold off on introducing the song “First is the worst, second is the best, third is the one with the hairy chest” as long as possible. You might have a sleep-deprived, frustration-fueled moment when it SEEMS like

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Our home, smarter than we ever thought possible

I’m going to be vulnerable for a moment and tell you that I totally fumbled Tom’s recent birthday. Not COMPLETELY — we had friends over for football, and dinner with his family. I also made him a blackberry pie. It’s not like we didn’t celebrate. It’s just that aside from the kids making him cards, I didn’t really get him anything. I didn’t

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Made with little hands and big heart

Made with little hands and big heart

It’s almost Thanksgiving, and I wanted to do a little something for my kids’ preschool teachers. I sort of struggle to tell my kids’ teachers that I’m thankful for them because just saying it seems rote. I’m thankful for you, but do you have any idea how thankful? Seeing my little boy blossom as a student who loves

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Putting memories in their hands

Putting memories in their hands

I take a lot of photos. Every time I upload photos from my DSLR, a computer pop-up says something like, “28 items were successfully imported” and I think, “That’s more than a whole roll of film. I just took a whole roll of film of my kid eating breakfast.” When I was a kid back in

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Come on in! Take your coat off and stay a while!

Come on in! Take your coat off and stay a while!

We’ve been in our new house for five whole months. Doesn’t it feel like longer than that? Maybe it just feels that way to me because I have been counting down the days until my toddler grows out of that cute phase he’s in where he throws my shoes into the kitty litter, and BOY are the

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Goodbye, sweet home

The day before we closed on our old house, I told the kids (with a bit of drama and gravity) that we were going to the old house to have dinner for the last time. I wanted to gauge their emotions, did they seem reluctant to go to the old house? Excited? Apathetic? Mary Virginia

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We bought a zoo

Before I start, I’d like to frame this post by telling you that I love wildlife. I’m not at all squeamish about bugs or lizards or even spiders. I love wildlife and the environment, and when I was a kid, my best friend and I started a club called “Who Says You Can’t Save The Earth?”

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Making home

Our new yard is full of beautiful blooms — hydrangeas, calla lilies, butterfly bushes, and Hibiscus. You can tell the previous owners cared about their home. They were thoughtful about things like irises and hydrangeas, and I imagine they looked forward to seeing them bloom every year. So when I noticed hydrangea blooms bigger than

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A drastic change of scenery

A few weeks ago as I was getting ready for bed, Tom rushed into the bedroom holding his laptop open to what looked very much like our dream house. Look at this room! And that one! A fireplace! A sun room! The next day we went to see it. I only had about fifteen minutes to look around, but

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Dress Trends for Brides?

When it comes to any type of wedding trends out there, you want to make sure that you’re the one at the top of the list. You want to make sure that you have the right information, and that you’re choosing the right way to dress, the right banquet halls in Glendale, CA and venues, and of course,

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17/52

It seems to be birthday season, we’ve attended three birthday parties in the past two weeks. I love any reason to celebrate — Last day of school! Cinco de Mayo! All three of my kids slept through the night! (We are going to THROW DOWN when that finally happens.) I’m a person who celebrates the cat’s birthday and

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16/52

RichmondMom.com is having a cute kids contest and when I heard about it I was like, CUTE KIDS?!? BOY OH BOY DO I HAVE SOME CUTE KIDS FOR YOU!! I entered all three of my kids, but you can only vote once. I realize that by entering all three I actually split the Krieger vote

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15/52

A portrait of my children, once a week, every week in 2016. David / Recently David has shown fascination with letters, words, and sounds. Here, he walked into the kitchen, sat on the floor, and asked me to spell Amelia Bedelia. I spelled it, slowly, and then he ran back into his room to continue drawing. I

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Putting on our actual Easter best

Last Thursday I dressed my kids in their Easter clothes, took them out in the front yard, and made them take re-do Easter photos. I did this because Easter was rainy, hectic, and we didn’t get photos. I also did this because, apparently, I’m insane. My kids are going to grow up with stories of

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Hippity hoppity, happy Easter day

As holiday celebrations go, we had a very low-key Easter this year. Easter baskets on table, hard-boiled eggs and jelly beans for breakfast. Simple, and still, we were positively scrambling out the door to get to church on time. At some point in the chaos of getting seven people dressed and out the door my

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14/52

Week 14 was spring break. We’d planned on fun outings but our only outing was a trip to the doctor. That’s just how it goes, I suppose. We still had enjoyed our lazy week at home, making messes and having fun doing normal, wonderful things — reading books, coloring, playing play dough, and running around in the

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On the night before Easter, and also the week after

Growing up we always dyed Easter eggs on the night before Easter, so I planned to do the same thing with my kids. This year, I had meant to prepare by boiling the eggs and setting aside bowls and food coloring, but the whole thing completely slipped my mind. The whole thing slipped my mind

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Semantics

After breakfast, the kids were asking about our plans for the day… Me: Guys, I have a great idea! Let’s have a Mommy Day! Let’s just do all the things that Mommy does ALL DAY! So we’ll be cleaning and doing chores… David: Um, Mommy? If we just do what you do then we’d just

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13/52

Today is Easter, and it was so chaotic that taking a family photo didn’t even cross our minds. But I did manage to snap a few in the morning. These are after Easter baskets and breakfast; before tucking in shirts and church. David & Thomas / The boys had matching shirts for Easter. Wearing the

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12/52

A portrait of my children, once a week, every week, in 2016… David / In the past few months David has been refusing baths, so we’re pulling out all the stops: showers, bubbles, bath paints, toys, bribes, threats. David loves the water, so this bit of stubbornness is frustrating much like when Mary Virginia would refuse to sleep at

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Semantics

The other day I was playing with Mary Virginia, and I was just struck by how lovely and sweet she is and how thankful I am to be her mommy. So I told her, “Mary Virginia, did you know that I used to pray that God would give me a daughter? I prayed that God would put a baby

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Funshine Bear

When I had David I constantly thought about what it would be like to have more than one child. My day was so full — so consumed. From the moment he woke up in the morning to the time he went to bed at night I was harried and overwhelmed with every step of caring

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My experience selling with ThredUp

[Psst: If you’re planning to shop ThredUp, use my referral link and we’ll both get a $20 credit: http://www.thredup.com/r/PBHKWD] ————- After I wrote THIS post about cleaning out my closet and sending a bunch of stuff off to ThredUp, a few people asked me to write about my experience. Since I don’t get too many post requests,

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The peak of blackberry season

We planted blackberries four years ago, and every year we watch the plant bloom,  grow berries, and then every year birds, squirrels, chipmunks, or some other form of evil gets to them before we can. This year, just like every year before it, we watched the plant bloom, grow glossy red berries, and then, we watched in amazement as

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Purple duck celebration

Mary Virginia turned two last weekend, and we had a little party to celebrate. And by “little” I mean little. Because normally when I say “little” I mean that I restrained the guest list to our 20 closest friends and their 400 children. The theme of this party was “mama just had a baby.” I

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The newest member of the pack

When Thomas was just a few hours old, Tom brought the kids to the hospital to meet him. David was extremely uncomfortable when he came to meet Mary Virginia in the hospital, so this time I planned ahead with lollipops. “Mommy, where’d you get these lollipops?” David asked me, because he thinks that lollipops are contraband

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Support staff

One thing I didn’t expect about having kids is the arranging required to do absolutely anything outside of the normal schedule. You take this kid, I’ll take this kid, Mimi will pick up that kid, and ugh, I wasn’t even thinking about their carseats. Do we have enough Goldfish and carseats? The arranging is why moms just stop

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School’s out for summer

Last Friday I fulfilled my duty as a mother and on the last day of preschool I forced David to stand on the porch with his school bag, stare directly into the sun, and let me take photos. Since I happened to be two days past my due date, the night before the last day

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While we wait

We are in the middle of the late-pregnancy waiting game. Maybe tomorrow we’ll wake up, make breakfast, go to the park, have lunch, shirk a few chores, and count the minutes until Daddy gets home. Or maybe tomorrow I will have a baby and our family will be forever changed. Who knows. The weather just turned — it’s

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Month Twenty-three

If you happen to see Mary Virginia anytime soon, make sure to compliment her on her newly erupted lower incisors. She’s been working on them for several agonizing weeks, and now that they’re here, they’re her greatest accomplishment. Or maybe mine. If you’ve ever read any of Mary Virginia’s updates, you can guess what I’m about

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Technically still 38 weeks, but pretty darn close to 39

A little over six years ago I injured my hamstring in a triathlon. I’d iced, stretched, rested, done physical therapy, and still it wasn’t quite right. I kept running, but I could only run conservatively — I couldn’t push myself. Two years later when I got pregnant with David, my hamstring was still bothering me. I ran through

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What little boys are made of

The other day during breakfast, David leaned over and whispered into his sister’s ear. Then he looked up at me and said, “Mommy, I just told Mary Virginia she’s going to die soon.” He informed me like it was something we’d talked about ahead of time, and then he went right back to eating his pancakes. The

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April flowers

Mary Virginia loves babies. She acts like an over-eager grandmother when she hears about an infant. She gets so excited that she starts talking in falsetto, and has to channel her energy into frantically knitting tiny sweaters and bootees. Then when she’s actually in the room with an infant, she transforms into a middle-school-aged boy with a crush. She

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Blackberry pie

Blackberry pie

I’ve mentioned before that Tom doesn’t really love dessert. That’s just one way he keeps such a trim frame of mostly sinew and muscle. He does love my homemade blackberry pie, though. I made it for Easter and figured I should share the recipe here since it’s probably the most complicated recipe I use that’s really “mine.” Here’s the

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36 weeks

David looked at me the other day and said, “Mommy, the baby is taking a long time to come out.” Then I had to sit down and rest because I was exhausted by how right he was. When people ask me when I’m due, I always say, “In May” because the ambiguity seems deter unsolicited

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Month Twenty-two

Last week Mary Virginia turned 22 months old. I think it’s been my favorite month yet, and I’m not just saying that because I’ve gotten more sleep in the past month than I have since she was born.  It’s not the only reason, but it’s certainly ONE of the reasons. Before you assume that the earth has fallen

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