Semantics

Semantics

We were driving home from the playground one day and Mary Virginia announced that she was bored. I guess that’s what happens when you spend all morning frolicking at a playground. I was on the highway and focusing on the road so instead of my routine of twirling flaming batons to keep Queen Mary entertained, I said, “Ok! Let’s

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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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Raisin Bran Chia granola bars

Raisin Bran Chia granola bars

We eat a lot of granola bars in our house. They’re portable, usually mess-free, and they’re good at sneaking in healthy ingredients. Plus, they’re almost always delicious. Most granola bars have nuts, though, (or they’re made in a factory with…) and not only can the kids not take foods with peanuts to their school, but we also

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53/52 – reflections and favorites

53/52 – reflections and favorites

Last week I officially wrapped up a year of portraits of my children. A whole year and I didn’t miss even one week. I know, I’m even more shocked than you. An explanation of the 52 project.  I really enjoyed the project for a lot of reasons. There were reasons I expected — I love having 52 photos

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Krieger Christmas 2016

Krieger Christmas 2016

On Christmas morning, before opening presents, Tom sat with the kids and read the Christmas story from the Bible. It’s something he started last year, and when he told me the idea I told him it was horrible. It would make the kids resent the Bible, I said. It would be a wrestling match, I

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52/52

52/52

Our family is still in the midst of Christmas celebrations, but I’m pausing to catch my breathto post these photos. And, who knows, maybe after a few minutes on the couch I’ll have room for another slice of cinnamon bread. Instead of Christmas morning photos (which would be so much more relevant), these photos are from

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Month 19

Month 19

Last week I was home alone with Thomas, and he was chasing Brigham around the house. Then I saw Brigham walk casually into the living room without Thomas behind him. I looked around the corner and didn’t see Thomas. I kept walking and Thomas was no where. This happens all the time. I lose Thomas

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DIY Narwhal Ornament

DIY Narwhal Ornament

David’s preschool class has a stuffed narwhal as a mascot, and in just a few short months David has turned into quite the narwhal aficionado. As we were thinking about Christmas, David wanted to get a narwhal for his teachers. While I thought that was a great idea, there were just so many licenses and permits

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51/52

51/52

I’ve been knitting. That’s what I’ve been doing. That’s why posting has been light, that’s why you might have seen me dragging yarn to the playground, knitting over cocktails on girls’ night, and stopping mid-conversation to count stitches. This year I made 48 hats, and every day Mary Virginia would cozy up to me and ask,

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50/52

50/52

This is week 50, which is incredible for two reasons. First, at this point it’s safe to say that I’ve stuck to the project! Second, it means this year is almost over. The year feels long and short at the same time, especially when I look back at these photos; especially when I look at

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Semantics

Semantics

If you know Mary Virginia at all you know that she is very, very aware of her wardrobe. She prefers dresses. Skirts are ok. Pants are intolerable. She also loves anytime I wear a dress or a skirt, which actually isn’t very often. The first time she saw me in my bathrobe she exclaimed, “OH MOMMY! I

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49/52

A portrait of my children, once a week, every week, in 2016.  David / This weekend David got to take home the class pet, Narni the narwhal. When he told me he was bringing home a narwhal I asked him where we were going to put the giant aquarium and his response let me know

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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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A quick look at the family gene pool

This morning at preschool drop off, a friend of mine commented that Thomas looks a lot like his dad. I agreed, and I actually hear that a lot. In fact, I hear that about all our kids. They look SO MUCH LIKE TOM. I said, “Yeah, he does. But let me show you something.” And then

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48/52

This past week we celebrated Thanksgiving. We celebrated in town, out of town, and in the middle of it all we had a spur-of-the-moment celebration with out of town friends. I took very, very few photos over the holiday. Partially because I was busy visiting with family and partially because I needed my full attention

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47/52

A portrait of my children, once a week, every week, in 2016. David / Making a beaded Christmas wreath ornament. Working on fine motor skills and Mommy’s patience. Mary Virginia / Sweet little marker-stained hands pat pat patting sugar cookie dough with her trusty sidekick Barbie dog. Thomas / I suppose the up side to having

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A certain kind of lifestyle

This morning, before 8 o’clock, my kids dismantled the playroom. When I say “dismantled” I don’t mean they made a typically giant toddler mess, disproportionate to their small size. What I mean is they took apart their toy bins and moved around furniture. Thomas spent the morning wondering how we fit all of Disney World into our

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46/52

It’s week 46. That means there are only six weeks left in 2016. And 41 shopping days before Christmas. As if we needed another reason to freak out this week… A portrait of my children, once a week, every week, in 2016. David / I’ve taken so many pictures of David creating this year. (7

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This unavoidable conversation about love

“He has told you, O man, what is good; and what does the Lord require of you but to do justice, and to love kindness, and to walk humbly with your God?” – Micah 6:8 On Tuesday, Tom came home a little early and we piled all three kids in our double stroller and ran to the

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45/52

A portrait of my children, once a week, every week, in 2016. The three of them / This is from this weekend just before kickoff. My kids made my dreams come true by wearing Virginia Tech clothes and standing in close enough proximity for a photo. When Tom asked me to marry him, we went hiking and

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Halloween 2016

The kids had their costumes planned for weeks, maybe even months before Halloween. An octopus for David, a butterfly fairy for Mary Virginia (heavy on the butterfly, light on the fairy), and a hand-me-down dragon for Thomas. Then the day before Halloween, Mary Virginia called an audible and switched to the most terrifying costume of

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A pumpkin novella

Here we are, on the other side of Halloween 2016 and can I just say: WHEW! We made it, guys. I don’t know what it is about walking with my family through our neighborhood in the dark that takes it out of me but MAN am I wiped out today, maybe for the rest of the

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44/52

Pumpkins carved, candy in a big bowl, costumes ALMOST assembled. Tomorrow’s Halloween and the Kriegers are ready. Except for the teeny detail that Mary Virginia spiked a fever last night and so our princess butterfly might end up on the couch watching Sofia the First instead of trick-or-treating. It’s lose lose for everyone, because that’s

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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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Month 17

Oh jeez, where do I even begin? Thomas is 17 months old, which means we’ve survived another month. Another month of doing nothing but putting things away and taking Thomas off the table. And while we’re taking him off the table? He’s emptying our drawer of cloth napkins. And while I’m franticly throwing the (unfolded) napkins back

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43/52

I know I’ve been posting a lot of afternoon photos of the kids in the backyard, but I just can’t help it. It’s like fall heard that it’s not my favorite season so it’s upping the ante with beautiful, golden light. Fall means winter is coming, so though I love the angle of the sun

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The late afternoon light

The late afternoon light

Every afternoon my two napping kids wake up around 4, and after a quick snack we go outside. When we first moved, my kids seemed uncomfortable and listless in the yard, which was a total shock to me. Our new yard is bigger and has more places to dig and explore, but they just weren’t really

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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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42/52

42/52

Every afternoon we have about an hour after naps and before dinner, and I’m trying to get in the routine of going outside. I wish going outside to play only involved me saying, “KIDS! LET’S GO OUTSIDE TO PLAY!” But that’s simply not the case. I won’t bore you with the details but there are shoes and

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Neighbors to friends

In the summer, our neighborhood had Popsicle parties every Friday. I posted about it on Instagram and several people asked me about the logistics. It’s this simple: the person in charge of our neighborhood association emailed everyone at the beginning of the summer with a calendar. Anyone who wanted to host signed up for a

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41/52

I’m trying to get the kids outside as much as possible. There are a hundred reasons, but at the top of the pile are 1) When we’re outside Thomas is happier and it’s almost impossible for him to get into the toilet from the yard 2) winter is coming. Like most of the south eastern

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Only my absolute most valuable customers

Every year around this time I start to get an regular orders from my Etsy shop. (Which, side note, so impressive, right? There are people who are Christmas shopping ALREADY. In OCTOBER! I imagine these people also show up to places at the afore-scheduled time. And probably also clean their home’s windows.) As a result I start carrying knitting

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Month 16

Month 16

Thomas turned 16 months two weeks ago. I considered skipping this month entirely, but I’m going to do an update because Thomas has reached the age that all he does is change and learn and in two weeks or probably even by the time I finish typing this, he’ll be doing and saying a hundred new things.

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40/52

Last weekend we went to Franklin County to visit my parents. It was a quick end-of-summer visit; the kids got to close out the summer swimming in Grammy and Gramps’s pool and to catch up with cousin Gabby. (Visiting from Canada!) So these photos are technically from last week. More like 39.5 instead of 40. A

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Sneaky food swaps for picky eaters

Alternate title: How I’ve kept my kids from getting scurvy on their preferred diet of jelly beans and begging for jelly beans.  At David’s 5-year check up, the doctor asked if he ate a variety of foods, and I kind of tilted my head and admitted, no, he’s pretty picky. The doctor asked me to tell

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39/52

A portrait of my children, once a week, every week, in 2016. David / We got something like three inches of rain this week, and since it hasn’t rained in Richmond all summer, we didn’t know what to do with ourselves. Scratch that, David knew exactly what to do. On our way home from preschool

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Just two girls at the beauty salon

It’s true. Since I had kids, certain things have fallen to the wayside. Things like trips to the doctor and dentist and shopping for a pair of warm boots for the fall. Of course I’m talking about appointments for me. Don’t worry, my kids are set in the appropriate-shoe department. I’m the cookie-cutter, stereotypical mom you see

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38/52

38/52

We started school this week, and it’s when our schedule fills that I most appreciate the remaining, quiet time at home. A portrait of my children, once a week, every week, in 2016. David / Introvert at play. As David grows we can see his need for alone time more and more. Tom made his

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3s and 4s

This morning my kids woke up at 5:30 a.m. because they were SO EXCITED! SO EXCITED FOR THE FIRST DAY OF SCHOOL! Perhaps they knew I was worried about getting out the door on time. Just doing their part to help; I appreciate it. Mary Virginia looks like she’d been crying for the past 15

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37/52

This was our last week of summer — school starts for the big kids next week. Instead of a last hurrah, it ended up being one of those weeks we just had to muscle through. We had lots of doctor’s appointments and subsequently Mary Virginia got sick. Is it just me or do other moms have

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Sixty months

Sixty months

David is worried about getting older because he’s worried that, when he grows up, he’ll like hot sauce and football. He sees how his father and his father’s friends consume hot sauce and football and so it seems inevitable that eventually his weekends will be full of Sriracha and shouting, “COME ON! THAT WAS HOLDING!” And yet, that didn’t keep

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Summer vacation

A few weeks ago we went on our annual summer vacation with Tom’s family. This year we went to Lake Anna for the first time. We had an awesome trip, our house was perfect for little ones — a sandy beach area, shallow water, lots of grass for playing, and even a screened-in eating area so

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36/52

A portrait of my children, once a week, every week, in 2016 David / If you follow me on Instagram, you already know we gave David an long-overdue back-to-school haircut this week. As I was cutting it, he said, “Mommy, don’t make my hair pretty. Make it cool. Make it like a triangle with flames shooting out.”

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