{twenty sixteen} first ramblings

10 years ago  i woke up…

in a new house…

in a city i had only visited once before…

only knowing a handful of people…well really, fewer than you can count on one hand.

this morning i woke up…

in our home of almost 8 years…

in a city that feels like home…

with my children snuggled up under blankets…

and, my husband on a conference call in his home office.

twenty sixteen.

already giving us surprises…welcome ones.

today,  the kids were supposed to be headed back to school, but they are not.

we are enjoying a slow morning.

a dusting of snow, freezing temperatures, and then freezing rain on top of that has shut down our city.

as much as i am ready to get back into a routine, get the house clean, and figure out what i am going to do with this brand new year, i am thankful to have one more slow day to spend with our family.

home is…new year surprises.

{october 14} happy corners of our home

my globe collection.

it has to be one of my very happiest corners of our home.

i recently moved this barn owl primitives sign from a different corner of our home to this spot near the craft table.

i think this is the perfect spot for it!

october 14

  • globes: etsy, goodwill, value village, garage sales
  • shelving: IKEA {no longer available}
  • creativity takes courage sign: barn owl primitives
  • pumpkin garland: DIY found honest to nod

still on summer vacation

initially, i thought i would blog every day this summer.

i started out writing about our days…drinking coffee, exercising, and checking things off our summer list.

then vacations started.

i had grand plans of documenting each day of our family vacations in july.

i did ok, but there were just too many photos and not enough time in the day.

now it’s been 3 weeks since my last blog post.

august was the slow month of summer for us.

a month to be home and just relax after being away from home 21+ days in july!

it’s now just a blur…the kids had way too much screen/electronic time, we didn’t get much checked off the summer list, but we did relax.

i’m not going to feel guilty about the screen time. summer is for relaxing. screen time is a part of kids lives in this day and age.

that’s all i am going to say about it.

while almost all of the other kids in portland are heading back to school today, our kids have one more week of summer break left.

we like to end the summer on a vacation with just our family.

we went to the oregon coast over the  weekend. ryan and i both love this vacation the most. while being with extended family is a lot of fun, being with our family in a spot where all the to do lists can be put away is so important and fulfilling.

r & l 2

lola 3

bobo 1

bobo 2

bobo 3

lola 1

lola 2

r & l 1

family photo 1

family photo 2

we played in the waves, rode bikes, walked along the beach, drove along the coast {from tillamook down to florence}, went out to eat, explored, watched movies, sat in the hot tub, built sand castles, played board games, and thoroughly enjoyed our time together as a family.

summer 2015: 34/89

yoga, two miles on the treadmill, and a nap.

that’s about all i could handle today.

our trip to new york was so full.

it really was relaxing….seriously, my kids always had someone to play with, they rarely argued, i got some quiet time, and ryan and i actually got to do some things on our own!

there are a bunch of local burger places in rochester.

don and bobs.


bill grays.

vic and somebody…

at any rate, we took the kids to don and bob’s after we visited grandma taddeo. it’s on burger row near sea breeze. the atmosphere is old time…counter with old stools, only a few booths, cashiers yelling out orders to the cooks.

ryan had started ranking the burger places on what he could remember…we eat at one each time we visit, but sometimes it is years between visits.

the next day, we went to seabreeze and walked down to bill grays for lunch. the building is newer, cleaner and bigger than don and bob’s. they also have abbot’s custard on site, which we got at the end of the day at seabreeze

again, ryan started his comparison and ranking…not deterring from his original ranking from the day before.

on thursday, we had a quiet day at my in-laws house. ryan and i planned to go out to lunch without the kids. we were going for the trifecta…three burgers in three days.

now, if we were some hardcore food network person we would have eaten all three at one sitting, but we allowed our stomachs to settle.

for our lunch date we headed to shallers in irondequoit, near the house ryan grew up in.

atmosphere is almost as good as don and bob’s. the kicker is that they serve coca cola products. i am a coke fan. their ice is also like sonic or chick-fil-a ice. if you’ve been to sonic or chick-fil-a, you know what i mean.

so, ryan’s ranking, and i concur, is:

shallers: sauce is meaty. fries are crispy and crinkle cut. burgers actually taste like beef.

bill grays: sauce is not as meaty, but has a good kick. fries are crispy and crinkle cut. burgers are not charred.

don and bob’s: wins for atmosphere. fries were not steak fries and under cooked. burgers were over done.

are you from western upstate new york? have you ever been to one of these places? what are your thoughts?

summer 2015: 32/89

{july 12} home

fish bowls to clean {so cloudy that we couldn’t see the fish…they survived}.

unpacking {still need to unpack 3 out of 4 suitcases}.

garden to tend to {ryan took care of the front, i’m still working on the back}.

laundry {will get to it eventually}.

grocery shopping {meal planning and shopping done for the week}.

mail to sort {lots of mail}.

white slipcovers to wash black dog hair off of {somebody thought the playroom sofa was his bed while we were gone}.

vacuuming of floors {record hot temps cause dogs to shed}.

dog to brush {see above}.

normalcy to get back to {still working on it}.

home {feels good}.

feel the fear and do it anyway

i’ve been dealing with some anxiety lately.

most of it is just general.


its usually because i am tired, or wake up in the middle of the night and feel like i can’t breathe. then it just spirals. i get more anxious because i feel like i can’t breathe {allergies and colds are not good}.

lately, there’s a lot going on in my brain that makes it tough to get a handle on the anxiety.

on sunday morning, i was up from 2 am until almost 5 am feeling so anxious.

the little guy got sunburned {which, of course, i had mom guilt about} and woke up hurting at about 1:50 am on sunday morning. i went upstairs because i heard him crying. ryan was in bed with him, and we tried to settle him so he could get back to sleep. he wakes up with dry feet and hands often, so he needed lotion, which i didn’t think to pack. he didn’t want the lotion with aloe that we just bought, so ryan and i both tracked some down. eventually, the little guy got back to sleep.

i, however, did not. i have weaned myself off of my general anxiety medication, but when i get tired or stuffed up, anxiety creeps in. its weird, but it all started when i was pregnant. i had trouble breathing because i got so stuffed up and the babies were pushing into my lungs. i really only get the attacks at bedtime or if i wake up in the middle of the night. i was up until 4:45 am…the thought of lacing up my running shoes and going for a run outside with odyssey finally calmed me enough to get to sleep for a while.

last week was a hard week of dealing with it…ryan was gone, i was tired, and it was just a vicious cycle of not enough sleep and then having the anxiety at night.

life is so good, but sometimes it gets really hard.

i really don’t want to go back on medication, but the nighttime anxiety is really tough. i mean, really tough. and, so many thoughts run through my head that just make it harder.

we’ve got a trip coming up later this month.

we are flying across the country.

in my 20’s i became less and less a fan of flying. cannot pinpoint a trigger, but i would rather not fly if i can drive. since kids, there is another dynamic involved. at least when i was flying alone, i could just focus on MY feelings and sometimes sleep or get engrossed in a book. now, so much of the flight involves taking care f what others need, that it just becomes tiring…which adds anxiety in my case.

not to mention, the last time we flew home from new york, i blacked out on the plane. we were, luckily, flying first class and in the front row. i started to feel hot, nauseated, and sweaty, so i got up to go to the bathroom. as i was coming out of the bathroom, i blacked out. a flight attendant was right there to “catch’ me. apparently, we hit the cockpit door. i woke up on the floor with the flight attendant talking on the phone to the pilot telling him that everything was ok, and there was just a medical issue.

yep, on that flight, i was there person who the announcement came over the intercom that said, “is there a doctor on the plane?” thankfully, there were three doctors. they took my pulse and BP, which was VERY low. they gave me oxygen. i felt very weak.

ryan and the kids were sleeping. eventually, ryan woke up and figured out what was going on. i made it back to my seat after assuring the flight attendant that we did not need to land early. we were about 1-1/2 hours from portland, and i figured it was best to just get home.

before we landed, they asked if i needed an ambulance to meet the plane. no way.

ryan kept asking how much wine i had to drink. he thought i just had too much of the free wine in first class, but when we got home i was sick with the stomach flu all the following day.

since that trip, i have flown to colorado by myself once.

right now, thought of getting on an airplane to fly across the country causes a lot of anxious feelings.

i really don’t want to do it…for a lot of reasons. the thing is, i have to. my kids want to go. we will be there for the little guy’s birthday, and i don’t want to be away from him for his birthday. ryan wants to see his grandfather. the kids want to see their grandparents and cousins. ryan has never flown or driven long distances with both kids. i am sure he could handle it, but i need to be with them.

its a terrible feeling. i wish it would go away.

the other night when i had the anxiety it started because i felt like i was a terrible mom for letting my kids get sunburned. then i felt terrible that in my last minute packing, i forgot to pack lotion. then i started thinking about the other trips we have planned for the summer and what if i mess something up with those trips.

what if i don’t pack everything we need?

how am i going to handle the long flight?

how am i going to handle the long drive?

is everybody going to get along?

what if they don’t?

what if i need some quiet time for myself?

what if i mess something up?

what if i let somebody down?

i know i was tired after a long week of single parenting. packing, driving, and taking care of the kids {and both dog} on my own the first day and a half in sunriver left me drained.

the truth is, i am so concerned about doing everything well. i don’t want to mess up for fear of being judged or criticized. i walk on egg shells worried about what others will think.

am i doing everything right?

am i meeting everyones expectations?

i pretty much go though life these days feeling the fear and doing it anyway.

there’s nothing wrong with that, right?

i was so happy to be in sunriver with the kids. i was so happy to be doing all the fun things i did with them. the dogs were happy, the kids were happy, i was happy. i was glad that i decided to go instead of staying home.

it was all worth it, but the anxiety is real. and it is hard.

life is so good, but sometimes it gets really hard.

home is…feeling the fear and doing it anyway.