Archive for the ‘home’ Category

My goodness, has it been a busy couple of weeks around here.

With Xavier’s help, I canned several jars of applesauce.

He contributed some chopping, hard work at the food mill, and–perhaps most importantly of all–the perfect name for our sauce.

Among oh so many things, the past couple of weeks have also brought us mini pumpkin cupcakes with (vegan) cream cheese frosting (yum)…

…some sorely needed dissertation writing time…

…and some all-important Halloween costume making time (complete with the requisite gnashing of the teeth time followed by triumphant squeals of delight for having outsmarted the pattern makers once again).

We are trying so very hard to embrace this happy chaos. And with a weekend full of Halloween fun ahead of us, we’re just getting started.


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An Art Caddy

I’ve been meaning to put an art caddy together for Xavier for some time now. He has a bunch of art supplies that were slightly more organized in our old house and are now less organized (read: mostly shoved into a plastic bin) in an under-the-stairs closet in the basement close to his art table. Organizing that space is a bigger project for another day, but after making dozens of trips downstairs to get markers, paper, crayons, scissors, and other supplies when Xavier has wanted to color or create something upstairs (and then finding them upstairs when he is working the basement) has made putting together a portable art station a high priority.

I initially had big plans to find the Perfect Solution, something attractive and functional. But after weeks of looking for something wonderful (that, let’s admit it, was just going to get marker and crayon markings all over it), I decided it was time for good enough. So on a recent trip to to the store I snatched up a plastic tiered tray with four removable bowls (which are actually pretty handy for moving supplies closer to the project at hand) on sale for about $10 and stocked it with paper, colored pencils, crayon rocks, a bottle of glue and a glue stick, scissors, paper and foam scraps, glitter paint, and little puff balls (one of Xavier’s favorite supplies). The handle on top makes it easy to move it around. Right now it lives on our kitchen table when we’re not eating and nearby when we are. Here’s hoping it makes for a more sane dinnertime/snack time/chasing Quinn time/Mommy-needs-a-glass-of-wine-cup-of-coffee-email-break time.

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One of the spaces in our new house that we didn’t have in the townhouse is a foyer. To call the space you entered into in the old place by such a name would have been really overselling it. “The beginning of the hallway” would have been more like it. It had the kind of claustrophobic air that made it feel designed for awkward squishing and contorting, especially when we had guests. I’m so excited to be able to have something as frivolous as a small entryway table and still have enough space for easy movement in and out of the house and into the other rooms.


I’ve decided to start a tradition of framing photos of our family from each season (winter, spring, summer, and fall) and displaying them on the entryway table during that season. The photos above–Xavier in his first three fall seasons–are among those I selected for the fall. It’s so fun to see all at once what has so clearly changed about the little guy (What happened to my little baby?) and what has stayed the same (that intense, pensive look). And I’m hoping looking at pictures of all the activities we do each season will get the boys excited to do them again.

We have but one shot of Quinn from his first fall (last year) among the five photos I picked and I’m so curious to follow him through the same process as Xavier (although I’m in absolutely no rush for him to grow up). I think this will prove to be a fun tradition, but I don’t expect to keep the same photos up all season. I’ll want to change things up at least a handful of times before winter.

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