{pretty, happy, funny, real}

I’ve been thinking about jumping on-board with Like Mother, Like Daughter’s {pretty, happy, funny, real} for some time, but I’ve had this notion that I needed to fully clean my house before I could do so. And then wait for a morning with abundant sunlight so I could take some really pretty, really perfect, really staged photos. Foolish, I know. Where’s the real in that mentality?

But LMLD’s photos are always so beautiful, and even though I’ve got a nice background to work with here, I feel like I’m always snapping pictures of clutter and wrestling boys. Oh, and boys asleep in places other than their beds.

I did, technically, participate in {phfr} that one time, right after I attended the “Crazy DC Meet-Up” with Auntie Leila, Suki, and Deirdre of LMLD. I wrote a post about the event and Auntie Leila kindly requested that I link it to PHFR. But anyway, here’s my first official {phfr}, and it’s rather more on the clutter/wrestling boys side of things than the pretty house side. It’s made up entirely of photos already on my camera, as I decided to do this post approximately 20 minutes ago. Here we go!

~ Capturing the context of contentment in everyday life ~ 

Every Thursday, at Like Mother, Like Daughter!


I stepped outside for a few minutes yesterday morning to try to get some cloudless-blue-sky pictures for this post. I was relieved to fail: there were just enough clouds to dispel my dread. And there were a few pretty sights to cheer me:

I loved the way the sun was shining on the upper part of the house. So pretty.


I loved looking up at our big, old white oak, which my husband recently estimated is 262 years old. I’m in love with it already.


And I don’t think I will ever tire of taking pictures of fields. (Though you, I’m aware, may tire of seeing my photographs of this same view again and again…)



These boys are always so happy when their daddy comes home from work. So am I.






There aren’t many things better than a box, are there?


And what’s funnier than pretending to scream-wake-up your daddy, who’s pretending to be asleep?





Oh, and pudgy hands contorting pudgy cheeks? Always funny.




My boys – even the little one – have mostly been going without naps lately. (They are some stubborn, stubborn little guys.) It’s not exactly a contentment-inducing scenario. Except for this inevitable side-effect:




Well, there are some glimpses at my contentment this week. Feel like sharing any of yours? Head on over to Like Mother, Like Daughter to check out the links or post your own.

7 Quick Takes Friday (Vol. 3)

7 quick takes sm1 Your 7 Quick Takes Toolkit!

— 1 —

Whew! I finally took the plunge into controversial topics yesterday with this post on immigration reform. That (posting on controversial issues) was the idea when I started this blog, but so far my posts have focused primarily on the stay-at-home mom thing. That and explaining myself. It felt good to get something out there on a Big Topic. Hopefully I won’t chicken out before writing on any more.

— 2 —

Behind the Laptop

The only reason I was able to write such a long post yesterday is because my 20-month-old (above, haunting the laptop) took a FOUR hour nap! But don’t be too jealous. He only slept that long because he was up until 10:30 the night before. We’ve fallen into a terrible pattern of sleeping late, eating and napping late, and then going to bed way later than is decent for a household with two toddlers in it.

— 3 —

Which is why I keep finding the boys asleep on the sofa:

Both asleep on sofa

J asleep on sofa 1

J asleep on sofa 2

Usually they only fall asleep while eating:

B asleep eating

Jude asleep eating

— 4 —

Maybe we can get ourselves on a better sleep schedule this weekend. We’ll be heading to a family reunion, where my older son and I will “camp” out with my extended family in some cabins in the woods. My family (my grandmother and her nine siblings and their families) have been doing this every other year for 30 years. And all but one of the reunions has been at this same camp. I’m really looking forward to introducing my boys to the woods and the stream and the campfire ring and the trails that I enjoyed so much as a child. Not to mention all the family I love so dearly.

— 5 —

I’m sure my boys, though, are really going to love all the bugs. They have no fear of the little critters. They love picking up ladybugs and ants and stinkbugs from all over our house. I’ve even (I report with glee) trained them to carry the latter varieties straight to the trash can. So this morning I found my 20-month-old laying on his belly, picking up an ant, running it over to the trash can, and then returning for another. Over and over again. Who needs exterminators when you have little boys around?

— 6 —

I thought this short piece in yesterday’s Washington Post was really great. It’s connected to what I was trying to say in this post: Washington’s “brokenness” or inability to resolve policy differences isn’t an accident. It’s a symptom of division in the country at large.

— 7 —

And speaking of division and discord… My boys have recently refined their own particular methods of tormenting each other. The older one (who turns three in just a few days!) has a somewhat scatter-shot approach: he walks past his brother with a feigned innocence, randomly shoves or hits the poor little fellow, and then just keeps on going.

But the little guy is more focused: He stares down his big brother with a scowl on his face and shouts, “No, Beh Boys!” (His nickname for his brother.) And again and again… “No, Beh Boys, No!” The bigger guy Can. Not. Stand it. He howls, “No, Jude! Jude say NO to me, Mommy!” It goes on for some time, the little one steadfast and shouting and clearly in control, the big one cowering and crying.

Oh, my goodness. What in the world am I in for?

Thanks for coming ’round! Be sure to go see Jen for all the other Quick Takes!