Sep 11, 2014

A Day in the Life of Me: A Comedy, A Drama, A Snoozefest? I’m Not Sure.

It says I haven’t blogged since July.  Here is why.  Here is the story of my day today, a day alike many others.  Some might find it funny, some might find it scary, some might say its the most boring story they have ever heard.  But these days are just as important to document about the days that are easy and exciting, so here goes.  Get ready for pure good old fashioned honesty.

It’s 7AM and Elliot wakes up grunting because he is suddenly bored upon realizing he has laid in the bed for 7 hours.  Cohen who is also sleeping wakes up and asks me if Elliot and I had "sweet dreams” which is one the sweetest part of the day.  He asks that every morning.

Elliot’s diaper gets changed and Cohen is off to the potty which makes me feel like a million bucks. Elliot is so happy that it is a new day as I put a fresh outfit on him.  But then his day takes a turn for the worse.  I have to set him down because Cohen wants breakfast, a breakfast that usually requires two hands.  He immediately starts crying in his Mamaroo although a toy might distract him for a minute or two, but not for long.  I can see him from where I am cooking and try and get him to laugh, but he is angry that I am not holding him.  Cohen is now demanding “an ice cold apple juice.” And a cartoon.  Breakfast is done as quickly as possible (I have it down to a science) and I take some headache medicine from Elliot’s screams.  (Somewhere someone is writing an article about how you should never let your baby cry without running over immediately and picking him up.)  And oh I wish I could do that.  I could do that with only one baby.  Two babies, that changes everything.  And two babies and a husband who works out of town all week all summer long, well that changes everything more.

I chug down a glass of chocolate milk, the quickest and easiest way to give me fuel for the next few hours.  Elliot sees me walking to pick him up and the tears somehow suck back into his tear ducts, and he is the happiest.  We laugh and giggle and play until Cohen is done eating and needs his hands and face wiped off.  I put Elliot down with a toy but he is already angry, he starts screaming again.  I quickly return to Elliot and Cohen asks us all to play with the super hero guys.  We have fun doing that, and then we play a memory matching game.  Cohen surpasses my memory abilities and wins the game.  I am proud and amazed at how smart he is.  Then I think about how I must be losing my mind because my memory skills were a bit delayed.  That makes me kind of worried.

I pay bills on the computer and phone, all the while carrying Elliot.  The people on the phone always ask about the baby because they can hear him making his cute little sounds right up by my phone.  Then Elliot gets mad that I am on the phone.  I set Elliot down and he actually is ok, so I do a load of laundry.  I constantly engage him while folding so he will not get upset.  Then he gets upset anyway.  He doesn’t want to roll around on his mat or play with his little toys he just wants me to hold him, so I do.  And he has never been happier.  He smiles a big gummy smile and I make him laugh until its lunch time.  I give Cohen lunch let him go to his grandparents because he is begging to go play the iPad with his Ahdadda.  I go home and feed Elliot. I am starving by this point and as I lay him down beside me while I eat on the floor, he is mad, crying, and kicking his legs.  Sometimes I can hold him and eat but I had a tostada today, and it just wasn’t working out.  I clean up after lunch and all the while Elliot is crying.  My headache is roaring on.  I quickly go grab him and rock him to sleep because its nap time.  Then I go on Facebook for some comic relief or something.  I see some crazy news articles about the scary things going on in the world right now and then I feel sick and want to throw up what I just ate.  I also look at some 9/11 tribute and sob for a minute.  Cameron calls me and we chat for a minute.  I get on Instagram because it makes me so much happier than Facebook, which I want to delete every other day.  It’s like that boyfriend you just can’t break up with because you have been together so long but is totally not good for you.  And if I deleted FB I would never catch all of Nathan Lee’s hilarious posts.  Well that was a fun 5 minutes.  That laundry is not going to fold itself!

So Cohen comes back home and he is down for his nap.  Eureka! Now its time to clean the bathrooms.  Meanwhile, a commercial comes on TV saying that if I am not using their particular cleaner, I might as well be living in a “Petri Dish” of bacteria and mold.  This stresses me out.  Oh great, a motorcyclist just drove by and while he his blazing by with his pony tail blowing in the wind he is blissfully aware that he just prematurely woke my baby from his nap.  Elliot is very happy to see me and we laugh, cuddle, and practice his crawling skills.  Then Cohen wakes up and demands another “ice cold apple juice” and snack.  Elliot is so happy right now so I decide to tackle all that with one arm least I make him cry again by putting him down.  Now my arm is almost broken but my Elliot is happy as a clam and that makes me happy.  Plus that headache is gone now, or at least hibernating.  I do more laundry while holding Elliot, and then put all of the clothes in drawers, while holding Elliot.  Elliot is smiling ear to ear a big gummy grin.  Somewhere someone is writing an article about carrying your baby and why you should never put them down.  This makes me laugh how this is an option or choice for some people, with us its the way it has to be.  What a luxury to be able to choose that for themselves.  Elliot demands being carried and held at all times.  I bought an amazing baby carrier wrap when he was born and it has saved my life.  I loved having him close.  Still do.  Its just that when you have another kid sometimes you are required to put that baby down, and that baby if he is like Elliot, a rare breed, is going to bawl his eyes out.  I can’t even go to the bathroom with out feeling like a bad mother.  There’s no blocking out them cries.  Headaches are a way of life now, I don’t even complain about them.

So this part of the afternoon is where I start daydreaming about how nice it would be if Cameron was on his way home from work.  But he is not.  He is in another state working for the fourth week in a row, and still has one more to go.  He will be home for the weekend and we will be working a wedding together.  I have a photoshoot and a wedding this weekend and always have a hefty amount of photos I am working on.  This happens at night, when I should be sleeping.  I can’t nap while they sleep because that is when I have to clean the house.  And if I wasn’t cleaning the house during naps I would be working on photos.  And if I wasn’t working on photo’s I am physically incapable of taking naps unless I am sick.  I hate that, even in kindergarten I would just lay there awake while everyone else napped. So the cycle of tiredness continues day by day.

But back to today.  We have been playing all kinds of things, and now somehow it is 8PM.  My tummy is rumbling from barely eating and breastfeeding all day, and Cohen also says he is hungry.  It’s time for dinner, time for chopping things with a knife and boiling water, so that means, time for Elliot to be put down on his mat in the floor where I can watch him from a safe distance.  No baby wearing while doing all that mess.  I began cooking, and Elliot begins crying.  Cohen is upset that Elliot is crying.  Cohen is running around covering his ears and yelling for Elliot to stop crying.  I am about to pass out from hunger and am trying to cook as fast as I can.  It’s almost done.  Cohen is getting impatient.  Elliot has never been more mad in his life.  I am about to have a panic attack.  Should I like, get a nanny?  Should I call someone to help me? Why is this so overwhelming?  Then I repeat to myself as dish out the meals, this is only temporary, and it won’t always be this hard.  Somewhere, some one has a secret camera watching me, and writing an article about how I am the worst mom ever for letting my baby scream and cry like that the whole time I make dinner.  But what the heck am I supposed to do at this point?  How do single moms do this? Why is my body and heart and soul demanding I have another baby immediately even in the midst of all the chaos?  Why have I not started running down the street tearing off my disgustingly dirty clothes off already????

We eat dinner and Elliot loves his mashed potatoes and peas.  Cohen feeds himself which makes me so happy, even though half ended up on the floor.  But he is such a big boy.  Potty trained and all.  Nothing makes me happier.  It is time for Cohen’s bath.  Elliot has to be put in his crib so that I can help Cohen get in and he.is.NOT.pleased.  The crying bellows. That headache is coming back.  I am putting Cohen in his night clothes and he wants me to get Elliot to stop crying, but Elliot won’t stop crying, because I am still trying to get Cohen ready for bed and that requires two hands.  Someone is probably standing outside my window watching this go down shaking their head in disapproval.  Letting that baby cry.  Trust me, TRUST ME, its not something I am happy about.  But when you have two, it happens.  I brush the tangles out of Cohen’s hair, and then he runs out of the bathroom to find his stool so he can brush his teeth.  I reluctantly take this opportunity to look in the mirror. Yikes. Just as I suspected.  I have never looked more disguising.  Cohen is back and he brushes those teeth.  Cohen is down for bed and I rock my sweet Elliot to sleep.  He is so tired.  I hold him a while and study his face, his tiny feet, his hands.  I put him in his crib, he wakes up. Try that three more times and finally he stays asleep.  Then I miss him.  What in the world. :)

So here is the bright side.  Cameron will be home next Friday, and will get to stay home until FEBRUARY.  Or else, we would of had to figure something out.  So I am doing the best I can, and I have that.  I have a husband who reassures me that I am.  Here is the other bright side.  Somehow, through a headache filled day like today, I recognize that these are the most precious moments of my life, spending my days with baby boys I love so much my heart could burst and I wouldn’t trade being their mother for anything in this world.  Cohen wraps his arms around me before bed and says, “I love you mama.”  I love him too.  And my baby buddy Elliot. I love them so much.  I love this life so much.  I’m so grateful.  For my family, my home.  I get to help support my family with my job, which happens to be exactly what I wanted to be when I grow up, an artist.  I’ve been a photographer for years now, and I love that I can do what I love and still be home with my boys.  I don’t have to work with anyone, its just me, doing things on my own pace.  There is a lot to be thankful for, and that is what gets me though rough days.

Now, its time to work on photos for about an hour while Steel Magnolias is playing in the background cracking me up.  Then I need to clean the kitchen.  Then I will go to bed and rest this weary body.  Better wrap this up and get to it!  Wait a minute, when was the last time I showered??






Faith, Trust, and Pixie Dust




Jun 1, 2014

Sunday Style-The Compton's






























































It’s been a long time since I felt comfortable enough to do a Sunday Style post, but today, I felt like I should take the plunge again.  My guys all looked so dapper today, I just had to show them off.  As for me, my pretty new dress gave me the confidence I needed to get in front of the camera again.  I have some getting back in shape to do before I feel as confident as I felt before, but when you are wearing clothes that fit you perfectly it helps making you feel a little more comfortable in your skin.  I had this dress custom made for me courtesy of Eshakti, an online store that I will be reviewing for you this week.  I can’t tell you how good it feels to be in a dress that was made for my exact measurements, this was how it used to be done back in the olden days!  I mean, the olden olden olden days, you know, the days I was supposed to be born in.

Today at Church my nephew Caspian was blessed.  He is only three weeks younger than our Elliot.  We have so many babies in our family that when they all are in the same room it can be pretty distracting, the noise and all, oh and the cuteness too.  Goodness I am about to fall asleep while writing this.  It is time for a good Sunday nap!  The second we got home for church we had to clean up ants, they were everywhere!  They were desperately trying to break into our honey and apparently needed an army to try and get the job done.  Luckily we put an end to that in the nick of time.  They already broke into our peanut butter even though I sealed it so tight I needed the jaws of life to pry it back open.  How??

We are wearing-
Cas-Dress c/o Eshakti Shoes-Swedish Hasbeens Bracelet-Anthropologie
Cohen-Zarababy and Saltwaters
Elliot-Vintage 
Cam-pants from Gap and Clarks

May 29, 2014

Red Scare Robot

My husband writes music.  In fact, he is pretty amazingly talented at  writing music.  It is his passion, and besides his family, it is his reason for living.  If you know Cameron, you know this is true. Before our first date, I did what anybody would do and quickly scanned his Facebook page for clues about the person I was about to meet.  After seeing some photos with guitars and him screaming into microphones, and reviewing his favorite bands under his interests (all who I had never heard of and now are some of my favorites) I knew he must be a musician.  Then I read his about me section that simply said, "Music is my life. I know a lot of people say that, but it really is the most important thing in my life.” Well it was pretty close to that, I don’t even think that section exists in the present Facebook profiles, this was after all 4 years ago.  His passion and knowledge of music was so interesting to me, and he has shown me so much beautiful music that I would have honestly never found for myself.  He is always listening out for something new I might like.  After a couple of weeks of dating him, he had written his first song for me.  I thought it was a lie because of how fast he came up with it and how good it was.  Now, 4 years later I have listened to maybe 100 new songs he has written.  He always asks me what I think and I’m always amazed at his lyrics.  This guy can write some lyrics.  He mostly writes very thoughtful indie folk songs that originate from something going on in our lives or even a movie we just watched.  This past year, he has been working very hard on his new band with Dakota, Red Scare Robot.  It’s so different than his usual songs, he and Dakota combine their styles to make some awesome music that is hard for people to put in any kind of category, and people they love to put you in a category.  But this is what I can tell you about Red Scare Robot.  It is upbeat, motivating, it’s relatable, it’s about relationships. and it’s inspired by our truth, oh and our kids love listening to it (its the only thing that stops them from crying on long car rides!).  There is so much work, hope, and feeling behind this project.  You can tell when you listen how happy music makes these guys.  His words are very meaningful to me, because I know exactly what these songs are about.  They give me insight into the way he is feeling when he can’t express it.  I think other people can moved by it too.  Cameron always wants to show other people things he is excited about.  He is always showing his friends, family, and me movie trailers, new inventions coming out, new bands, news, new devices, anything and everything.  His Dad is this same way.  Most every new band we listen too is discovered by him or his dad.  Cameron is the same way about his songs, he just wants you to listen, because, its pretty great!!  So take a listen, they are getting radio play on a few stations and are now on rotation on Rdio and can be purchased on iTunes.  I am proud of how hard he works, how brave he is,  and I am excited to see where this journey could take us! 

Give it a listen!  My favorite is “Won’t Give Up”, its about his Dad. 
Listen right now on reverbnation.com/redscarerobot
Find on iTunes
Listen on Rdio


Faith, Trust, and Pixie Dust 


May 28, 2014

Little Lovelies Shop


































Proud Mama Post! I entered Cohen in a brand rep contest for Little Lovelies shop and he was selected as the only boy, and boy was I proud.  We felt lucky because of all of the beautiful competition.  But I think he was the right choice because look at this kid rocking this hat!  I was worried he wouldn’t wear it for long but it must have been comfortable because he didn’t even try to take it off, and it stayed on while he was running around playing frisbee after we took some photos.  I never thought of buying him a fedora hat to wear, but sometimes we don’t know how great something can look until we try it on, and I think he looks quite cute in them!  I started to warm up to them when Sam Wolff on AI was wearing them all of time, he was one of my favorites, and they always looked really cool on him.  Since Cohen is a brand rep now we want to send everyone shopping for kids to the great store it came from!  It is called Little Lovelies and you can find a lot of great trendy girl and boy clothing and accessories!  I love finding new small shops and supporting the mama’s who run them and their families.  There is also something for mama’s there as well.  It’s such a great community and I love that so many mothers are finding ways to make money and still be home with their children.  Creativity is in and I love what I am seeing from everyone’s wheels turning!  P.S. This might be my favorite photo shoot I’ve ever done with him, I just can’t pick a favorite photo from all of these! He is, a ridiculously cool kid.

Shop his look:
Cloth: Zarababy   Moccs: Freshly Picked   Hat: Little Lovelies

Faith, Trust, and Pixie Dust

May 27, 2014

Things That Are Pretty



1. Mothers day present from Katelyn and Mom, an antique C charm.
2. Bracelet from my Dad and Stepmom from Christmas, its the most perfect bracelet ever.  Also my  rings I wear everyday, the little gold one with Cohen’s birthstone, and my engagement ring that is the most beautiful ring I’ve ever seen.
3. Shades of blues.
4. Baby boys in baby blue smocks.

Just wanted to share some of the things that made me smile on Sunday.  I hope everyone had a great Memorial Day weekend enjoying family, friends, and our freedom that so many died to preserve.  We went to a get together at my cousins house and did our first swimming of the summer.  It was the perfect day filled with family, food, (s’mores, lemon aid, hamburgers and hot dogs, homemade ice-cream even!) and swimming with my whole family, which I realized yesterday I had never done!  Happy someone in our family has a pool.  Amber and Keith, you are going to be quite popular with everyone this summer I am sure.

Faith, Trust, and Pixie Dust

May 24, 2014

A Walk to the Post

 Sometimes it feels like our days go by so fast, and I think it’s important to try and make each day with my boys count.  I wish I could fit in everything I want to do with them into one day, to make the day as full as possible.  In the dream scenario we would have arts and crafts time daily, a daily walk, I would have time to make us juice, time to just sit and let him play inside, and even time to snuggle up together to quietly watch Peppa Pig.  Somedays we can do it all but more often than that we are lucky to get half of those activities in, although him playing outside daily has become a set in stone routine because he makes sure of it.  The thing that is most important to me is setting time to just talk to him and engage him for a full conversation where I can give him all of my attention.  To answer his questions, to pretend with him, and to watch the new dance and song he came up with and wants to show me.  This usually has to be when Elliot is napping!  In an effort to encourage curiosity and learning, I try and find time every day to teach Cohen about a random topic.  It’s so easy to remember to do this because a topic usually comes to us organically in reaction to something that happened during the day.  On a stormy day, I taught him all about the weather and pulled up Youtube videos on our big Tv through our Apple Tv and I showed him tornadoes, lightning, thunder, and snow.  He talked about that for a whole week. We learn about where different kinds of animals live, about healthy and unhealthy food, how plants grow, colors, and everything that sparks his imagination that day.  Having visual aids through the iPad and Apple Tv really help him understand and visualize it all.  This week, I opened my Instagram shop and we were getting lots of packages in the mail from my own Instagram shopping, so I taught him all about the mail and the post office.  I let him go check the mail that day and open the package we received, and answered all of his questions about who had brought him this present to our door and just left.  I had a package to return so I decided to take the boys on a walk to the post office and show him where all of the mail comes from.  Cohen was so excited about our little field trip and that he would get to search for muddy puddles along the way as it had rained the whole day before.  It was Elliot’s first walk downtown and his eyes were darting back and forth to all there was to see along the way.  I know our post office workers really well since I always am sending off photo cds, so they were nice enough to let me walk around for a while teaching him about the mail.  The whole experience felt so Mr. Rogers Neighborhood, and it was a fun way to teach him about something new.  The photo’s above are from inside our friendly neighborhood post office.  It was built in 1893 and is just about a 5 minute walk from my house.  Look’s pretty haunted, doesn’t it?
Our downtown, still looks the same as it did back then, just minus all of the pretty vintage cars. 






























Faith, Trust, and Pixie Dust

May 16, 2014

Do what you love: Sugar Pixels Design

This post is about celebrating loving what you do!  Whether you are a stay at home parent, a teacher, a nurse, an artist, or a person who finds time to do what they love after work in their spare time.  Today I have my sister-in-law Sydney and her cute graphic design work that she calls Sugar Pixels Design.  You can definitely tell this girl loves what she does! 
 Our kids are modeling her new tee’s from the fun photoshoot we did yesterday to showcase her new original infant/toddler clothing line at her Etsy store, Sugar Pixels Design.  My son Cohen, my nephew,(Sydneys son) Julien, and my niece Clementine were the best little models and it was fun to spend time with them.  They were pretty profesh about modeling these tees!  Sydney (Aunt Ninny) was sweet enough to give Cohen a few tee shirts and he (and I) just loves them!  They are super comfy cotton and have a good fit, not too boxy is what I always look for. He loves pointing out the animals on the “Friend to all living things” tee.  And I can not wait for him to wear the “Young American” David Bowie inspired tee on the 4th of July.  Also we love the bright colors in the “Be Brave” tee!  Here are our littles showing off how cute they fit!
Below you can see examples of custom and original wall art!  She also does custom invitations to all events, so check her Etsy shop to see more!     



























 

I asked Sydney to tell us about her work, and why she loves it, and this is what she said!
Q: Why and when did you decide to start your company?
A: "I was in school for graphic design and stopped going to help my family after my dad had a massive stroke a week before my wedding in August 2012.  My father was a professional photographer and I started getting into graphic design at a young age when he would pay me to edit photos. Shortly after my husband and I got married I became pregnant with my son Julien.  I made the decision to be a stay at home mom long ago but still wanted to be involved in graphic design and didn’t want to give up what I had done and loved for years, so I decided I would start my business so that I could stay at home with my baby and still be very motivated to continue doing what I loved to do!  I started Sugar Pixels Design designing wedding invitations.  I would sit at home and come up with sample wedding invitations all day and put them on Facebook just to see if anybody liked them. I got great feedback and went from there!  I started making invitations (to any event), business cards, and business logos.  After having my son I started doing nursery art and have just recently started an infant/toddler clothing line!"
Q: What do you see for the future of Sugar Pixels Design?
A: "I’m really excited about what I’m doing and what is to come.  I see big things in the future of Sugar Pixels Design and am more motivated than ever because I love what I do so much."
Q: Why do you love what you do?
A: "Having a creative outlet that I am able to share with others and still stay home and be the mother I’ve always wanted to be to my baby makes me extraordinarily happy and grateful.  I’m so thankful for my customers for allowing me to do what I am doing and making me a business and not a girl with a silly hobby.”

Sydney is giving one lucky reader of mine or IG follower of TLSK a free nursery print and tee shirt on this GIVEAWAY I am hosting!  A pair of Freshly Picked moccasins is also up for grabs!  Click HERE to see details on entering!  And go check out Sugar Pixels Design for all of your nursery art, infant/toddler clothing, and invitation needs!

I was thinking today about how my whole life has been centered and inspired by my creative family.  My mom and her special little touches she always added to everything from sparkling handmade gift tags from Santa under the tree, to the cutest star shaped peanut butter sugar sandwich in my lunchbox.  My dad is an amazing artist, creating everything I could ever dream of thus making the world around me so magical, from a homemade pair of ruby slippers (when I was little and Wizard of OZ obsessed) and a big white wooden treasure chest with my name written in gold on the side, to beautiful jewelry I wear and woodland animals hanging on my walls.  My sister sings like an angel and makes every song her own.  My husband writes incredible music, and his passion for writing new music inspires me.  My very talented father in law is an incredible artist and photographer and musician, and his artwork is all around our home.  My mother-in-law crochets beautiful things, like the fox hat Cohen is wearing above.  My siblings and siblings-in-laws, and cousins are all super creative and appreciative of good music, movies, and art.  I just love it.  Being surrounded by them only further inspires me to do what I love: Blogging, photography, painting, even dressing myself and my family and decorating my home in a way that is thoughtful of how beautiful I want everything around me to be...

I saw this quote somewhere and it is something my family and I try to live by: “Create what you want to see in the world.”  Yep, its a good one.

Thanks Sydney for being on the blog today and sharing what you love to do!  It truly does make this world a more beautiful place.  Please go like Sugar Pixels Design on FB, click HERE!

Faith, Trust, and Pixie Dust




Elliot Dasher: 3 Months

This happy Butterbean turned 3 months on the 10th! No words can describe how much I enjoy toting him around all day, staring down at him with his bright eyes staring right back at me.  I love how easy it is to get him to smile, and the sweet coo sounds he makes when he is trying to talk to Cohen.  He watches his brother and is amazed by everything he does, and Cohen is very protective over his little brother, always comforting him when he is crying.  He and his Daddy love to watch basketball together every night while Mommy cooks dinner.  He can just sit with Cameron forever without getting upset.  He loves being tended too.  He loves baths, getting dressed, and even getting his diaper changed.  The only thing he doesn’t like is not being held. Elliot seems to grow a lot everyday.  Each morning he seems so much bigger than the night before!  I swear, the day he turned 3 months his 0-3 month clothes where instantly way too small, so I sadly have to start putting them away along with the newborn stuff. Sniff.  

I just love this healthy, happy, sweet boy.  Happy three months mister!  Daddy, Mommy, and Cohen love you so very much.