Friday, February 23, 2018

A Decade Together

Exactly 10 years ago about right now, I walked down the aisle in my homemade wedding dress, to a tall and handsome guy wearing boots. It was February 23rd at 2:23 p.m. and thus began a decade of happy times together.

It is kind of funny how a single day in your life can become one of the most memorable dates and then, 10 years down the line it's just as special, but the actual day is nothing like the one 10 years prior.
For instance, a wedding day is:
A day to look your best.
Smile at friends and family who have gathered to celebrate your marriage.
Share a first kiss.
Feel like a movie star with all the pictures being taken.
Eat a specially prepared carrot cake just for us.

However, today has been a very, very, ordinary day:
Daniel fixed breakfast, like he has been doing for the past 7 years.
I did laundry.
I coaxed the children into going outside despite the weather.
Daniel boxed some orders in the summer house.
I somehow managed to get through one chapter of history for school.
We had leftovers for lunch.

But that doesn't mean the day is forgotten or our love has diminished because we aren't currently off on a tenth-year celebratory cruise or something. There are seasons of life for grand adventures and noting memorable days like this, and there are times for saying, "Happy Anniversary to us" over the heads of a couple slightly grumpy children. It hasn't always been easy, but the hard moments do not outweigh the smooth-sailing ones.

So here's to a lot more special days, ordinary days, and grand ones spent with my favorite guy in the world.

(And yes, we do plan to have a little getaway next week; 24 hours away in a big city with no little will be wonderful.)

Thursday, February 22, 2018

His First Haircut

The time had come. His hair was long enough to curl around the bottom of his ear lobe and I could have made a ponytail from it in the back. So, he went to the hair salon, made the old ladies smile, and came home with his first sucker. I saved his baby curl and tried not to cry or be overly sentimental. sniff. sniff. I do wish I would have taken him to a proper men's barbershop for his first official haircut, but there will be other times.

Tuesday, February 20, 2018

Lincoln's 2018 Sweater

I have started a tradition of knitting a sweater for Lincoln each year/winter. After the past two I've made, I decided the next one should be a knit-in-the-round, from-the-neck-down style with no seaming involved. This one from Tin Can Knits was ideal. Super easy to make and I almost felt like I was cheating with no seams to sew together. The added garter stitch along the sleeve adds just enough interest to an otherwise straight-forward, basic sweater, and I really, really like it. I raveled about it here.

Friday, December 22, 2017

It's a Merry Christmas


I have always loved the Christmas carol, "God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen" and this year the first line has really stuck out to me:

 God rest ye merry gentlemen
Let nothing you dismay
Remember Christ our Savior
Was born on Christmas Day
To save us all from Satan's pow'r
When we were gone astray

Oh tidings of comfort and joy
Comfort and joy
Oh tidings of comfort and joy

Did you catch that bold section? All too often I go astray in my daily encounters with children or my husband and my attitude gets sour. But that's exactly why God sent Jesus, since he knows I can't do it on my own. What a relief. 

Merry Christmas from our real-life family, who get into scrapes, argue, fuss at one another, pull each other's hair (okay, Daniel and I don't do this but I bet you can guess who does), and are still learning to turn to Jesus for everything. 

What great tidings of comfort and joy!

P.S. We're back from Denmark...have been for a few months now. This space gets neglected when there's life going on such as homeschooling, trips to the library, reading, playing, cooking, sewing... Yep. Life is full and lovely. 

Tuesday, September 19, 2017

Around our Danish Table

Our AirBnB apartment has two rooms; the kitchen/dining room/living room and then the bedroom. So naturally, a lot of life centers around the kitchen table.

Some knitting...

Snack time with Danish pastries...

Learning how to play Solitaire...

Playing Chinese checkers...

Learning to type.

Lego building...



Hand lettering for a wedding card...


And lots of drawing. May I repeat that? I truly mean lots. All 3 of the ink pens I brought have run out on her. It's been the depths of despair each time.




Sunday, August 27, 2017

In Sweden

My first introduction to Sweden was when I was 8 or 9 years old. How? See below:

I soaked up every bit of Kirsten's story from the American Girl Collection and of course, Kirsten is from Sweden. I might have thought that I would want to visit Sweden all those years ago, but probably never thought it would happen. But it has. I've been to Sweden and already want to go back. 

We have been in Scandinavia for almost a month now and Sweden was the second country we visited. The AirBnB house we stayed at was outside Gothenburg and had the nicest little playground just around the corner. I loved how natural it was, with berries growing along the edges, sand toys there for play and the birch log balance beams. We had a slow Sunday morning here and spent some time in the sunshine trying to cure sick children. Natasha still wasn't feeling top notch after developing a cold the morning we flew out of Chicago (groan) and on this particular morning, Lincoln woke up with a fever, serious teething going on and threw up. Welcome to travel life with little ones. 




This was the happiest Lincoln was that day, as the remainder of it was spent in Sadness and Despair. Poor boy. 



Natasha got increasingly better as the days progressed but Lincoln remained pretty miserable without Ibruprofen. Fortunately, we were sight-seeing and walking around, so he stayed cozy in the carrier and just took his naps on my back.


When you're a traveling mum, pictures of food don't get taken before it's already partially consumed. 
Traditional Swedish meatballs with lingonberry sauce here...super good.


Natasha found a jellyfish in the North Sea when we visited the Volkommen Island.


Gothenburg's Botanical Gardens made her so dreamy.


I'll just be honest here: Traveling with children is not as relaxing as it would be without them. But it is an adventure. One that makes you want to scream, laugh, tear your hair out, giggle, persevere, wonder why you're even trying, second-guess yourself, and then step back and realize the memories being made are definitely worth the struggle. There will be plenty of time in my future when these little people are older, to sit quietly over a cup of coffee and pop by the fruit and flower stand instead of dealing with a meltdown. 

We do hard things because sometimes the easy route is too commonplace. 

And, we travel with children because, as Daniel said, "We can't leave them home alone." 

Sweden, you treated us lovely. I want to come back for more than 2 days; maybe in the winter. Without the children, who for sure would complain about the cold and snow. But I won't. 
Until then, I'll think about the fond memories made on our first visit.

P.S. If you want to see more details of our time so far, check out my other blog where I focus more on our travels and adventures.

Thursday, July 6, 2017

These Summer Evenings...

Have been so glorious. Bubbles are a favorite and I'm loving spending it with my people.