when life gets in the way

i don’t even know if i remember how to do this anymore.

it’s been one of those years that creeps up on you and then steals you away and before you know it, it’s christmastime again. so much has happened but i can’t remember a thing as i sit here to write to you all.

well, i do remember one thing. we had another baby!

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almost one year ago (she’ll be one on the 11th) our lovely e was born. i was so worried about how life would change for us, and especially for s. i didn’t think i could love another baby the same way that i love s and i was terrified that she would hate me for having another baby and having to share her entire world. after e was born, though, those fears were very quickly forgotten. except for the times when s tries to kill her baby sister, but i guess that’s to be expected (and apparently what i did when my little sister was born. sorry for that).

that’s not to say that it hasn’t been hard (it is SO HARD with two), but i can’t see life any other way now.

so, that’s been me this year. oh, and we moved house (a mile down the road, but boy does it count with two kids in tow), p started a new job, s started preschool, and i quit my job at starbucks after eight years to become a full time stay at home mom and started freelance writing. i guess you can say we’ve been kind of busy.

i’m not sure where things will go from here, blogging-wise or life-wise, but i felt the need to get this written down. i am doing things so much differently this time around (better? worse? who knows) and the days go by so quickly that i hardly have time to breathe. and my house is a tip. ugh. i should probably go do some laundry or something. or catch up on the kardashians?

tough choice.

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hello again! (again)

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so here we are again, again.

it’s been a long time since i’ve thought about blogging, but the combination of a serious candy crush addiction and a desire/need to share a little bit of myself with someone has brought me back again. i can’t promise it’ll be regular (like it ever was), but i will try my damnedest to write every once in awhile.

it’s been so long that i can’t even remember where we left off, so instead of recapping my life over the past six months (more? much more.) i’ll focus on the future. tomorrow my baby girl is TWO YEARS OLD! we are entirely in the throes of toddlerhood, where the terrible twos have well and truly begun rearing their ugly heads. in the bad moments, everything is ‘mine NOW’, epic floor-rolling tantrums, and kicking/smacking/thrashing anything within reach. in the good moments (which to be honest are much more common than the bad), it’s all ‘luv doooo mommyyyy’, cuddles, and crazy developmental strides. i’ll take it. maybe with a glass of wine.

work is the same as ever. mondays at starbucks give me a little bit of a ‘break’ from home. more importantly, they give p and s time together for adorable daddy/daughter dates. most of the time i wish i could be home with them, but there’s something to be said for walking into town without a buggy and worrying about no one but myself. i still don’t think i could handle full time work. i don’t know how working moms do it! (believe me, i still thinking being a mostly stay at home mom is tough too, in different ways.)

speaking of family time, we’re heading away on a ‘mini-break’ to paris next week (thanks bridget jones for the english terminology here!) and can’t be more excited. s is excited too, to take the ‘twain’ through the big ‘nunnel’ and to see the ‘gib ife towah’. and to eat cakeys. obviously. i promise an update after we get back! 

that’s all for now, but we have a mini toddler birthday party planned for this saturday, so i’ll let you know how that goes, too! much more low-key than last year, with more play, less prep, and just as much cake. in the meantime, to make up for my absence, i give you cute toddler photos. you’re welcome. (photo credits to the ever fabulous francesca db photography)

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back to blogging?

it’s been too long, and i’m sorry.

but i’m not sorry, too.

this summer has been a bit of a whirlwind for our little family of three, and it’s been refreshing to have spent most of my time IN the moment, rather than being there but not really there. we’ve been to America, Germany, London (more than once), and North Wales and have had some amazing adventures. i won’t post all the pictures, because there are a silly amount of pictures, but i will give you a little taste of what we got up to.

i’m not sure whether i’ll start blogging again regularly, but i wanted to make sure you knew where we had been. i’ve missed you all, too! so if you’re reading this, thanks for staying by me even when i dropped off the map.

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[i also want to apologize to the lovely sara, a fantastic reader and consultant for scentsy (click the link to check out her site) who approached me to review one of her products. she sent me this warmer and two scents to trial and review on my blog. so, very VERY belatedly, here it is! i LOVED the fragrances and found that i didn’t need to have the warmers turned on for very long at all before my whole house was transformed. it really is a brilliant, high quality product. this is what i was sent in the mail (there are TONS of varieties of warmers and scents to choose from, and even stuffed animals with warmable scent packets!):

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scentsy is very popular in the US, especially among families with young children who enjoy home fragrance but feel they would rather not have burning candles all over the place. it’s only just starting out in the UK, though, and sara is keen to get in touch with people who are interested in the product and company. if this sounds like anything any of you might be interested, check out her page and contact her there, or let me know and i’ll get you in touch with her. who can resist some online deals?! not me, that’s for darn sure.]

on being a good mom/mum. or, wine and lovely babies bring perspective.

so today i’ve been a little bit of a witch with a capital b. i blame it a little on myself (hindsight is 20/20, right?) but mostly i blame it on the british.

now, for my british friends out there, i don’t mean you as individuals, i mean you as a country in general, and more specifically whichever governing body decided that british mother’s day would fall on the church’s mothering sunday rather than today (the american, and italian, and apparently the every other country in the world-recognized mother’s day).

i had a lovely british mother’s day in march with my husband and beautiful baby, and i tried today to remember that day. but it’s just so damn hard when all of my american friends are bragging about their lovely lovely mommies and how special/lucky/amazing/vomtastic they all are. and yes, they are all of those things. and so is my mom, of course, who celebrates the day today. it just makes it so hard to be in between the two holidays, feeling like i can only partially celebrate each of them.

so i sat sulking for awhile this afternoon, feeling like a sad, lonely, lost mummy/mommy (seriously! what am i?!) when i realized i was being stupid. i had not one, but TWO days dedicated to me and my new role in our family. i had TWO days to remember how amazing my own mother is, and how amazingly difficult it is to be a mother. i see my own mother in a new way now, and from that perspective, can appreciate what i do for s on a daily basis so much more. so instead of feeling sorry for myself and missing out with playtime with my own wonderful daughter, tonight, i splashed with her in the bath, sang to her on our bed, and read the same stories with her that my mother read to me when i was a little girl. it doesn’t matter if i got any cards or flowers today, or if everyone i know wished me a happy mother’s day. all that matters is that i recognized the special relationship i have with my mother and the little girl that made me a mother, too.

cheesy and cheesier.

cheesy and cheesier.

madre and me.

madre and me.

(this vom fest is brought to you in part by p, whose swift kick up the bum inspired me to get off my bum and stop feeling sorry for myself. thanks for that.)

another family update (and more apologies)

i think sometimes i lose my writing mojo. or my precious baby decides to sleep 12 hours a night and reminds me what 8+ hours of consecutive sleep feel like and i capitalize on that shiz. one or the other. either way, sorry for the hiatus. i’m back now with a vengeance! and here’s a song for you.

that’s fort atlantic with their amazing ‘let your heart hold fast’ from my favorite episode of how i met your mother. yum.

so, what’s new in our lives?

p and i are now the proud owners of a TODDLER. and whoever coined the phrase ‘the terrible TWOS’ is a dirty, dirty liar. that crap starts as soon as your baby realizes that there is a world outside of the buggy. i swore to myself i would never be THAT MOM (ie. my mom …i wasn’t a very good baby) but this product is on the to-buy list at the moment. sometimes you just need a leash.

s is officially a social butterfly. over the past month and a bit we’ve had more than a few houseguests (p’s sister and her family, s’s godparents and their four kids, s’s other godmummy and my best friend, and my sister…not including the house full for her birthday party!) and s has had an amazing time dancing, playing, laughing, eating chocolate, blowing bubbles, dining out, and shopping.

and a few other things, in brief:

s is addicted to chocolate.

p and i saw the dalai lama.

s had not one, but TWO babysitters, and appeared to behave to some extent.

never go to the natural history museum (or any other free london attraction) during the school holidays. especially with a sick baby.

my baby rocks out to bruno mars, psy, and macklemore. i’m a bad mommy.

this summer is going to be epic. plane tickets booked to america, holiday in wales with s’s godparents paid in full, and s and i get to join p on the choir trip to germany AND on another weeklong program in london. i should probably talk to my boss.

‘no’ is the new ‘yeah’. and i do not like it.

i bought baby crocs and i don’t feel guilty.

some mummy friends and i started a book club and so far we’ve read one whole book! up next? this one! (thanks e for the inspiration!)

that’s all for now, but stay tuned for a post on the party of the year…it was a good one.

sophia loves cake

family update time

it’s been kind of an epic week for this little family. mostly for s.

we officially have a walker!

also, apparently walking = becoming a teenager.

diva

it really is the beginning of the end now, isn’t it?!

in other news, i successfully completed a day (okay, four hours) of ‘keeping in touch’ work at the bux without crying or breaking down at all. it was actually kind of nice being out of the house for awhile without pushing a pushchair or worrying whether s was too hot, too cold, poopy, hungry, or tired. it was also nice knowing that p and s were spending some quality time together. i’ll be back for good one day a week in just a few weeks’ time, so i’d better be ready!

as of today, i’ve also completed two weeks on weight watchers. two weeks in and ten pounds down! thank goodness for lots of water, cucumbers, and ww snacks (mostly of the chocolate variety). i know weight loss typically slows down after the first few weeks, so i’m determined to keep on track and not to cheat myself out of anything. i WILL lose this baby weight (shhh, i know it’s been awhile, but i still like to call it baby weight. it makes me feel better).

p is back at work and it’s in full swing, so there are three or four nights a week when s and i do dinner and bedtime alone. it’s not always fun (as evidenced by the temper tantrum above) and it’s seriously testing my skills as a SAHM, but we’re getting there. plus, it’s kind of nice to spend the evening vegging out and playing on the computer (read: blog) without feeling like i’m neglecting the hubs.

speaking of alone time with s, we are officially enrolled in a kindermusik family time class for the next 12 weeks. s is kind of a bully compared to the other babies, since she thinks that slapping and climbing up on children is a perfectly acceptable form of social interaction, but the teacher assures me that it will all be okay and that s will enjoy it. i’m looking forward to it, too!

and finally, plans are coming along for s’s first birthday party in march. we’re just about to set a date and have decided on photography, (cup)cakes, and decorations. i’m sure i’m far more excited than i should be, but you only turn one once!

and now for a little bit of adorable, just to make up for the naughty baby face above.

happy baby (for a change!)

first birthday prep (or how to plan a frat party with babies)

in less than two months, s will be celebrating her first (and most badass?!) birthday. it’s equal parts exciting and depressing for us to plan. exciting because our baby is almost almost almost officially a toddler and we get to celebrate the wonderful ways she’s changed our lives over the past year. depressing because, as cool as we make this party, she won’t remember it.

so there will be booze.

obviously. because otherwise it’s just a silly afternoon where a bunch of parents wish they’d smuggled in their flasks of whiskey while their respective babies crawl and scream and cry and poop all over each other. just like every other day, really. just kidding. mostly. in all seriousness, i really want this party to be laid back and fun for kids and adults alike. so there will be beer. and tequila. if you know me, you know that one of my mantras in life is this: EVERYTHING is better with tequila. so there will be beer with tequila (desperados, anyone?!), cupcakes with tequila (for the grownups only, no need to call the authorities!), and, since i’m a little old fashioned, tequila with tequila.

**note: i am not an alcoholic. in fact, after approximately two drinks these days i am done for the night. so obviously most of this is a joke and does not affect the parenting of our beautiful child, who i’m sure will enjoy tequila just as much as me when she’s all grown up. and not before then. i’m sure she’ll be as innocent as a flower until her 21st birthday (please just let me live with this delusion for awhile).

and there will be cake.

we’re still ironing out details for this aspect of the party, but i found a fantastic local bakery two little cats that’s happy to provide a smash cake for s’s photo shoot (surprise! oops) as well as cupcakes for the party. i thought two smash cakes might be a bit extravagant (read: paul thought) so we will have to settle for adorable photos of s smashing a cupcake into her face during the party. on the menu for the cupcakes: raspberry and lime flavored with lime green sugar sprinklings and fresh raspberries on top. yum. as for the smash cake, i’m hoping it’s going to look like this fabulous cake above!

there will be decorations.

Source: hapykoi.com via Kaitlin on Pinterest


Source: indulgy.com via Kaitlin on Pinterest



i toyed with the idea of having a very hungry caterpillar theme for this party, but decided instead to go with bright colors and more basic decorations. i especially love the ideas from 100 layer cake!

and there will be presents.

Source: amazon.co.uk via Kaitlin on Pinterest





Source: amazon.co.uk via Kaitlin on Pinterest

since march is fairly close to christmas, and since my house already seems to be a toy factory, we’re planning on keeping gifts pretty minimal this year. what i would love for her to get, however, is a few musical instruments. she shakes and bashes all of her toys already and really enjoys rhyme time and music of all kinds, so i think she will really appreciate a few things like these.

and there will be s.

Source: rstyle.me via Kaitlin on Pinterest

everyone who knows me knows that i love a little bit of baby style. in fact, i’m kind of obsessed with pinning gorgeous dresses/tops/jeans/shoes/anything to my baby d board on pinterest. and i have absolutely no restraint when it comes to baby clothes. we had BETTER have a girl the next time around, otherwise there are going to be many lonely, depressed articles of clothes that haven’t been worn in s’s nursery. so here is my inspiration for baby birthday style. (ok, so it’s more than inspiration. i bought it today but shhhhhh! don’t tell paul! ps. i want EVERYTHING from the beatrix potter range at baby gap right now. check it out here.)

i’ll keep you updated as the plans progress!