Since becoming a mother, one of my absolute favorite things to do has been to take my babies out on walks in the neighborhood where I grew up. I can’t explain how much I love this little community. Every time I go out walking, it feels like magic.
I’m not sure if it’s the quiet, loving, family-oriented nature of this place. Or if it’s simply all the beautiful memories that I’ve created here over a lifetime, but I adore it. It’s interesting, too, because I can remember a time in my late teens when I wanted nothing but to get away from this town and onto something new. And now, at thirty-two, with two babes of my own, I am drawn here fiercely.
I am so grateful to have this place that feels like home and even more blessed by the fact that I get to share the magic with my babies. ♥
You can see more posts in our portrait series, here.
You can see a couple of my other favorite “walks” posts here and here.
A couple of months ago, it occurred to me that since Marina was born (17 months ago!), I really haven’t had any one-on-one time with Roman. It sounds really crazy saying that, but it’s true. I mean, I guess I spend a bit of alone time with him when she is napping, but at that time I am usually playing catch up with laundry, dishes, meal prep, etc.
It obviously hasn’t been a conscious decision, but it’s just one of the realities of being a mother to multiple children. We are stretched further and thinner. Still, I feel like it’s important that I carve out “special time” to be alone with each of my children. I want them to know how loved and cherished they are. I want them to have special moments and memories where they are not competing for my attention.
Last week, Roman and I had our first little “date night” when I allowed him to stay up past his bedtime and well after his baby sister went to sleep. It was the sweetest thing. He was so excited for the privilege of staying up late. We had a little pajama party, made popcorn, and watched a bit of “Jurassic World.” I can’t even tell you how much this kid is loving dinosaurs these days! It’s just adorable.
It was so much fun to carve out some special time for him and me. He is an incredible little boy and I am so grateful to call him mine.
If you didn’t already know, August is “National Romance Month.” It’s the perfect time to plan something special for you and someone that you love. The flowers pictured in this post were a gift from the ProFlowers.com Anniversary Collection. They were such a beautiful addition to our home and a pretty reminder to keep on spreading the love.
The county fair has been one of my favorite summertime traditions since forever. There is something absolutely magical about it. From the delicious food, to the adorable animals, to the fun shows — I love it all.
Yesterday we made the annual drive out to the fairgrounds and it was such a nice day. Roman got to ride on a “Monster Truck” — a longtime dream-come-true for him. We ate (far too much), played games, rode the feris wheel, and watched a dog show & pig race. What more can you ask for?
We left the fairgrounds with full hearts, and fuller bellies.
You can see a couple of my past visits to the fair here and here.
Okay those two pictures above are definitely my two new favorites. How sweet are my babes? And also, how big are they getting!? (Too big!) Ahhh, I’m so in love with those little faces!
The other day we had been planning a late afternoon picnic out in the yard. Finally the time came and we got all ready to head out. Just then we noticed the sky turning dark and within minutes it was pouring. It was such a disappointment! That last hour before bedtime is always one of the hardest of the day for me. That’s why I love to get outside at that time. Usually we take a walk to the park or have a snack & run around in the yard to get out our pre-bedtime jitters.
Since the rain was keeping us inside that day we did a little impromptu picnic on the kitchen floor. You can see those outtakes at the bottom of the post. The great news, however, is almost as quickly as that storm came on, it drifted away. With less than an hour before dark, the rain had faded to a light drizzle and we decided to adventure on out after all.
I was walking toward the grass, looking down at my camera, when Roman pointed up at the sky behind me, “Look, Mama, a rainbow.” The most gorgeous rainbow was, indeed, sprawled across the sky. The most stunning gift that follows many storms. I am so glad that Roman pointed it out to me, there’s a good chance I might have missed it otherwise! His curiosity and attention to detail constantly take my breath away. I have so much to learn from these dear babies of mine.
I’d like to take a moment now to talk about those adorable bandana bibs that they are wearing in this post. They were a gift from our friend, Ann, at Ikkletots Bibs. Ann is an amazing mama to two daughters, and a grandmother to three little ones.
She started Ikkletots Bibs with the hope of selling a range of bandana bibs with unique designs. Her pieces are contemporary with strong colors that coordinate with most outfits. Her quality-made bibs stay the course. I absolutely love them for my little ones. They are stylish and highly absorbent — perfect for drooling babies and messy meal times! Ann has over 155 five-star reviews and counting.
There are so many things to love about summertime, but one of the best has to be live music. Am I right? I’m right. 😉 Last year I had to stay away from the music scene because we were dealing with Marina’s colic. But this year, I’m back at it. It’s so nice that both of my babies have reached an age where we can get out and do things.
Day trips are my favorite and when we can squeeze in some fun + some music, I call it the best day ever. Recently, I’ve popped Marina in the carrier and we’ve headed out to some local venues to check out a couple of local music festivals.
It’s been a blast for me — and my goodness — that baby girl loves to wiggle to the music! Adorable as can be.
In honor of the fact that Lollapalooza is just wrapping up, I thought I’d put together a little post to share the things that I carry in our “festival” bag, as well as a few tips for practical (and cute!) festival style.
1. Cottonelle® — Let’s be real, when you’re carrying around a toddler, things get Hot, with a capital H! It’s the best feeling to carry something in your bag, that leaves you feeling fresh and cool, no matter what. Cottonelle® knows it takes a bold confidence to go commando, but once you’ve got it – it makes all the difference. Cottonelle® with CleanRipple® Texture is designed to clean better, so you’re clean & confident enough to go commando. Cottonelle® with CleanRipple® Texture keeps you clean so you can rock out confidently this summer.
2. Sunscreen — I always carry something for me and something a little stronger for the babies. My daily moisturizer contains a bit of SPF, but I also carry an SPF 30 to put on my shoulders and back if we’ll be in the sun for awhile. I always keep the littles covered in SPF 50, all over.
3. Shades and Hats — We’ve got to keep our pretty eyes covered, too. I never leave home without my aviators and I’ve got an assortment of sunhats to keep the babies shaded at all times.
4. Comfy Shoes — How cute are Marina’s little “boho” sandals? I adore them. They keep her cool & comfortable. When it comes to festivals, I usually rock a pair of flat white sneakers or flip-flops. When you’re on your feet all day, comfort is key!
5. Simple, Stylish Accessories — Marina is just getting to the stage where her baby hair is growing close to her eyes. We’re not ready to cut it yet, but an adorable pink bow clip keeps it pinned up and out of the way. For me, I chose a simple choker of wooden beads, perfectly “festival chic.”
6. Cool Summer Dresses — Standing and rocking out in the sun all day requires comfort and coolness. I chose a light, airy crochet dress for Marina and a cool, gauzy dress for myself. In matching shades of sunshine yellow, of course.
7. Lip gloss — Last but not least… I keep my makeup light all summer, but I never leave home without a favorite, sweet & shiny gloss for my lips.
Alright, I think I’ve covered all of the basics! So what do you think? Are you headed to any festivals or fun, summery events soon? If you don’t have any plans, don’t worry. You can enter to win an all-inclusive trip to Wanderlust 108 Festival in Miami on October 22, RIGHT HERE! Good luck.
If you can think of any other festival “must-haves” that I missed, let me know in the comments. xo
I was selected for this opportunity as a member of Clever Girls and the content and opinions expressed here are all my own.