turkey travel


We've been in Pennsylvania since Tuesday. We're traveling back home tomorrow, a little heavy hearted to say goodbye to my husband's family but relieved to stop digging through suitcases. I got my driver's license renewed while we were up here (whew, guilt-free driving again!) and met my newborn, perfectly scrumptious nephew. He was born the night we got here; holding him didn't remind me much of what it was like holding Carter ... sadly, I think that feeling is buried somewhere I won't be able to ever find it again. But he felt amazing. Small, warm and dripping with baby fever. Yep, I made sure Matt held him twice so he'd get it, too. I'm in love with our new nephew.

I can't report on how Carter did with the traveling, because I don't think we brought him. The little boy we've toted has behaved beyond a realm I knew he was capable of. He hugged, kissed and spoke politely to strangers. Beamed with smiles. Followed directions. Slept happily and eagerly in his pack & play. He was adorable, impressive, and I can't remember the last time I was this proud. I must have been doing something right all along. Now I just have to figure out what it was, and write a book about it.

Happy Thanksgiving!


I like to think these long, Fall walks give Carter more material for his dreams at night. He's piecing the world together; I get to watch.







That adorable outfit is courtesy of my new favorite etsy shop, Room to Romp. Finally! Clothes designed specifically for the interests and comfort of toddler boys at play. Carter seriously admired the little chick on his shirt. I was really shocked that he could immediately differentiate it from a duck, saying Bock bock bock bock! I kept wanting to call it a duck, and (acting personally offended) he'd correct me.

I've got to figure out who's been teaching him this stuff undercover.


Carter stayed with my mom for the weekend while the walls of our house inhaled a smooth, relaxing silence. I must have taken a total of six baths; some to shake off the cold, others to check and see if my stomach's started shrinking yet (no), the rest were just because I could. The guilt that comes with a high water bill was washed away by fragrant, soapy water and the flickering light of my apple cider candle.

I hope you had a good weekend!

today i decided

that I want to be hot again.

ha. haha. hahaha. That felt hilarious to type. It's teetering on the edge of deletion.
But it all started when I got my hair done yesterday.

Photo on 2011-11-09 at 15.27 #2

It took the girl a full three hours to highlight, tone, cut, blowdry and straighten my Rapunzel hair. I'm not in love with the color, but I didn't go home crying, either. I always feel so Addams' family-esc when my hair is broom-straw straight like this.

But with my 2 inch-long, dark roots deleted, I feel amped. Recharged. I want to wear tight shirts and not be worrying about my post-baby muffinized stomach cinched into lumps by the elastic of my leggings.

Today I started a new goal. I'm going to call it Mission Muffin Top: 20 miles by Nov. 20th (running, walking, or stroller pushing). That gives me 11 days to flatten this pooch out a little. Yeah, it's probably small potatoes to most athletes, but it's big to me. Except for picking up the house, I'm practically lethargic. I'm not sure if post preggo stomachs have actually proven capable of flattening, but since my driver's license is still MIA, I may as well give my neighborhood greenway a go. I think outdoor stints for extended periods of time will be good for Carter's spirit, too.

I'm using a free app called RunKeeper to track my distance and posting on Twitter. But other than a few outdoor pictures, this exercise deprived, princess of a mommy won't be posting any more blogs about fitness.

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empty dining room fashion show

My new neighbor has been showing me the greatest little boutiques in our area, and they're so reasonably priced! She took me to one last night that literally had my heart racing the second we walked in the door. I'm big on all things pretty, and combing mall stores looking for pretty articles here and there is exhausting and time consuming. So a store crammed with 100 little beauties I'd love to own? I didn't think it was possible. There I stood, cherishing the lace and ruffles consumed by my eyes and feeling sorry for my future self ... I knew I'd go home feeling guilty for buying too much. But there really wasn't any way around it. That boutique was designed in my dream world.

One boutique we went to on Thursday was having a champagne party ... with raffles, door prizes, food and dressing room fun. We'd been at a Pottery Barn event, showed up to the boutique late and were greeted by a very drunk group of fashionable chicks. My heart gravitated straight to this dress. At first, I thought it was a skirt - it looks like it could go either way. But when I slid it down over my hips to see how the skirt version might work, a buzzed woman ordered me, No! Dress!

She was right, it looks adorable as a dress.


leg warmers - payless shoes
boots - bandolino
dress - flaunt (the brand is cecico)

More pictures of my boutique finds to come!

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meet vanessa


My name is Vanessa, and I grew up around yarn.

Knitting machines, cones of yarn, sweaters and knitted toys surrounded my play areas. Ladies and grannies would come into my mom’s yarn shop and pick out yarn for their loved ones, spending what seemed like hours searching for that perfect design and yarn color.

It was all fascinating, but not for me. I liked playing outside rather than indoors, and all the wisdom of the older knitters could not sway me into picking up knitting needles.

I made my first sweater when I was 13 and the love affair began. Inspired by the idea of one of a kind knits, I decided to pursue a career in fashion design. I attended Moore College of Art and Design and learned the principles of design.

In 2007, I went to London and interned with designer Debbie Bliss and British Knitwear label Weardowney. After receiving my BFA in 2008, I looked for jobs that would really challenge me and hone my skills. I work for a major yarn company as my day job. In the evenings (and between naps for my 18 month old son) I design and knit for my etsy shop.

I cherish the idea of one day running into someone on the street and seeing them wearing one of my designs.

halloween video

Halloween video footage!

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Solving the puzzle. Why does daddy work?

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We rolled out of our warm cribs on Halloween morning, made a Starbucks pitstop and popped into the front door of our Kindermusik teacher's house ready to maybe sing a pumpkin song or two. I was in no way prepared to be knocked over by the biggest momhood blunder I've committed to date. All six toddlers were spectacularly ravaging and whirling the room in costume or some sort of holiday attire. Flooded by adorable, I looked down at Carter. He was as baffled as I was.

I felt. so. bad.

While Carter's at this young age, I put so much pressure on myself on holidays because these early years demand historic pictures be taken. There's decorations to be hung to coincide with the phrase In my house, we used to always have a so-and-so hanging from the such-and-such. Truly, he's growing out of his cuteness by the day. Next year I probably won't have the chance to get him into a costume chosen by me. No sitting to bask in the reflection of his baby-faced yumminess wrapped in fuzzy fabrics with glued eyes and tails. Just seeing my blog and my obsessively curled hair, you can tell I sail my ship a tad from the perfectionist angle. Not everything has to be perfect. But holidays? They're on that ship.

And boom. Just like that, I'd dropped the ball. Missed an opportunity I should have been on top of.

We went onward with class, sang and danced with children dressed as pumpkins. a mouse. a car. The other moms were armed with cameras, chasing for pictures. Carter was more reserved than usual; I figured because processing the costume ordeal in conjunction with busting out dance moves requires more concentration than a two year old can handle. By the time we left class, I was borderline angry at the whole situation, worried Carter might think he's different, strange, or something's wrong with him because he was the only one who didn't get to wear something fun. Darn those moms. Those kids. Those cute costumes. How dare they all.

When we got home that day, I pulled out an owl costume (from this website) and carefully offered it to Carter. His vocab doesn't cover the Bring it on! his eyes were answering.

For the afternoon, Carter was an owl in our driveway. His fear of costumes? Overcome.

Thanks to Toddlerhalloweencostumes.com for sending him such a fun outfit!

Carter settled in for his afternoon nap while I got dressed in my Minnie Mouse costume, carved my own pumpkin, strung orange lights on the porch and willed the pouring rain to stop. Matt got home from work, put on his Pinnochio/Peter Pan getup, and we slung an umbrella over our heads and walked the neighborhood.


It took some convincing, but once Carter realized saying Reat! (Trick or Treat) to complete strangers got him candy, he was all in for the door-to-door mission. He was one of those kids who doesn't stop taking pieces from the bowl until it's out of reach. I had him putting pieces back into bowls and felt lucky he was just as eager to say Thix (thanks) as he was to plead Reat.



Did anyone else notice how small the fun-sized candy bars have gotten? Or is it that we're just getting bigger? Candy shrinkage or not, this year I decided that Halloween's my new favorite holiday. And I promise you, next year Cart will be clad in costume from sun up to sun down.

For good measure, we might even be an elf at Christmastime.


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