2012 is getting away from me

maybe just january is getting away from me.


i'm grateful for my iphone, because it's way easier to pull it out, snap a quick pic, and carry on. are the photos the same quality as my big girl camera? no. are they better than no pictures? yes.

so i'm good with it.

so here's what we've been doing in january:




1. harper figured out how to do her own ponytails.

2. we've entered the realm of Saturday Morning Swim Practice.

3. we had a thai food double date with dear friends ... and the boys played their itouches the whole time.

4. henry had his first official swim meet and did a great job. starts and turns ... and breaststroke kick ... and butterfly ... need some work. but his freestyle is strong and his backstroke is amazing. so i'm more than proud, and totally excited to see where this will take him.

5. we took the house off the market. then we did some final cleaning/touch-up stuff that we just hadn't gotten around to doing. then we re-listed it. traffic was good the first two weeks, we had a solid nibble, then nothing. and yet the feedback, still, is all positive. the likelihood of turning that house into a rental is becoming very high.

6. i finally ... FINALLY ... started unpacking my scrappy stuff. after harper bugging me for weeks to do it so we could do something arty.

7. i spent my birthday day sitting on the couch, kitty in lap, watching ellen degeneres. pretty great way to spend a morning. i should do that more often. all that "errands and cleaning and unpacking and being responsible" crap is for the birds.

8. the downside of swimming: occasionally, practices are held from 7-8:30 p.m., and when those practices fall on nights marc is out of town, it's a very late night for miss harper. so we do what we can to keep her entertained and cooperative. sometimes that means letting her shine a flashlight into her mouth and then taking a picture of it in the rear-view mirror.

9. i mentioned she wanted to get arty, right? one saturday, that meant she made three different sets of hand puppets, and put on three different puppet shows for me.

10. a couple of times this month, marc was actually home. and two of those days he was home, he ended up free for lunch. on this particular day, his free-for-lunch day coincided with my day to take my car back to toyota and leave it there. (starting to think my 11-year-old car may not have five more years in it.) so i had a lunch date.

11. we spent martin luther king jr day at a neighbor's house ... she and i chatted non-stop, while her boy and mine played airsoft, and her girl used mine as face painting practice. we all won.

12. henry got braces. hello, gawky, awkward adolescence.

and there you go: january. already.

2012 is going too fast.

365/52 week 36

(if today being day 253 is correct, that means there are 112 days left in the year. does someone want to do the math for me? did i keep up or am i off by a week? or three?)

we've had so. much. rain. holy cats and dogs. south of us an hour or less, they got 10+ inches of rain in the past 24 hours. 10 miles from us, they are watching the river and predicting it to be above flood stage. craziness.

and people say our climate is totally fine and normal.

okey doke.

pix from the past week ... tomorrow, i swear, i'll write about something more interesting. though i have coffee with 5th grade moms in the morning, harper to and from school, laundry, reservations for wine with a friend ... maybe i'll write on saturday.

anyway ...


two months ago, marc surprised me: tickets to "wicked"!! he scored some major points. it *almost* gets him back in the black from forgetting my birthday less than three months after our wedding ...


harper attended a birthday party "spa" day at scoops. bless my sheltered daughter's heart ... every time they brought out a new pampering thingy, she just looked at it like, "wha ... ?" she asked if the nail file would hurt. she was reticent to let the lady put the pedicure do-hickey between her toes. i've failed as a mother.


two of my favorite girls came to town, kimber and summer. we ate sushi, drank some beverages, talked scrappy, and giggled with our adorable pocket-sized waiter.


seriously, have you ever seen so much pink?!


junior high math = more homework x less time for anything else


a fluffy old bee has decided to winter in my hollyhocks.


school picture day. and apparently i told him to go stand in the rain.

365/52 week 32. and 33. oh heck, 34 and 35, too.

i've slacked for a month. a MONTH. last posting of pix? august 20th.

pix have been taken, just not posted. so ... i'll be economical, then get back in the saddle of normalcy on thursday.

(click on the pic if you want to see it full-sized)

week 32:

220 221  222
223 224 225 

220: harper took her allowance to target and bought herself the lego set her brother convinced her she wanted. she felt very grown up.

221: henry, clearly impressed with daddy's small golf ball handling skills.

222: chattin' up his buddy on the phone. topic: pokemon.

223: roasted brussels sprouts and sweet potatoes for dinner. someone's craving fall.

224: how she slept.

225: him and mini-him.


week 33:

226 227  228 229
230 231 232

226: studious consideration of the lego catalog can mean only one thing: it's xmas list season.

227: the moon seems to be ready for fall, too.

228: found a cool light for henry's room next year. yay, ikea.

229: harper got all life-jacketed-up for her fishing day at eco-camp. she caught three blue gills. "just little ones, though," she said.

230: when you break a tempered glass lid, it shatters like a $#*&%@. and crackles forever.

231: starting to be a little sad at the thought of this room being empty all day once school starts.

232: my yellow-tube-floating son and his buddies, on a last-hurrah kind of day.


week 34:

  233 234 235
236 237 238

233: took the kids to waterpark of america for the day. it was on their summer to do list. time was running out.

234: took the kids to mill city museum for the day. it was on my summer to do list. time was running out.

235: harper took the fairy rocks that twig the fairy gave her during previous visits to the renaissance fair. twig giggled in delight when she saw the rocks, sprinkled harper with glitter, and played her a tune on the flute.

236: decided to eat on the deck. marc opened the table umbrella and a bat fell out. so, naturally, he grabbed it. and i, naturally, took pix. then we set it free and went back to setting the table, at which point we noticed a second bat in the umbrella.

237: harper's very first sleepover. oh, the giggling.

238: legos, legos everywhere.

239: how daddy does a "home lunch."


week 35:

240 241 242
243 244 245 246

240: the intrepid landowner climbs through the undergrowth that will one day be his side yard. and mrs landowner is inwardly gloating over the previous declaration from the mr that "mowing is man's work!" because that side yard slope is going to be a bitch.

241: hallo, lovely light fixture.

242: pink + pink x pink = bff b'day lunch at american girl bistro.

243: gettin' some air under those feet.

244: sooo ... technically a pic from the previous day. whatever.

245: day one of kindergarten, harper has added to her bff roster and immediately requested a play date.

246: squirrels. eating nuts.

365/52 week 31 (ie "vacation")

i said we were going to be busy. what i didn't say is that "busy" was code for traveling to indiana, ohio and michigan for a family reunion, camping, swimming, and riding four hours on a ferry.

now you know why i didn't blog last week.

i'll get to a full-on recap of our adventure later this weekend, but here is a quick glimpse via 365/52 (i'm nothing if not dedicated to this little project. ha.):


marc decided he needed a pre-vacation siesta.


packed to the gills and on our way.


true story: there was some spirited fishing taking place at my great-aunt martha's pond during the family reunion. harper grabbed a pole, said, "daddy, i think there's a fish on here," and proceeded to reel in (with some muscle help) this little guppy.


harvesting jalapenos, tomatoes, and basil with grandpa roush.


the ubiquitous hoosier pork tenderloin sandwich. *shudder*


ahh ... sand in the toes!!!


evidence of how awesome grand haven is: a candy store/liquor store. yeah ... those were the two choices.

s.s. badger = chilled kids x not having to drive through chicago.


i'll be back soon with the stories to fill in the blanks.

365/52 week 30

like i said, it's been crazy. here's a glimpse at last week ... i need to get my eldest to stop making insanely dorky faces every time the camera comes out. doggone him. his sister is the only cooperative ... mostly ... subject.


harper finally got to have a "one braid" ... and it was a happy day.


accessorizing a la 'robert the rose horse.'


henry loved tennis camp.


out riding the neighbor's cooler scooter. i know, i thought it was redneck, too. turns out it's legit redneck.


oh, to be young and bendy.


with slickers and pokedexes, they ever so patiently waited out the wall of water that dropped on our house just as we were preparing to leave.

i feel that mchotness is woefully underrepresented in the 365/52 project. note the head-set. there's your explanation.


have a great weekend!

365/52 week 29

we have a lot coming up in the next two weeks, so blogging will be spotty-to-nonexistent. even so, i'll do my best to at least keep up with this.

from last week ...


belle has left the beast and is training for the olympic figure skating team.

henry, attempting the risky double zip-stick-and-crocs-with-socks move.


the kids made up their own version of h.o.r.s.e using the stairs, a laundry basket, and puffles.


lantana, i still love you. bless your little hearts for withstanding this heat and blooming in spite of it.


i bought a painting from this etsy shop. it's of grand traverse bay in michigan. and i had to have it for sentimental reasons. more on that later.


she still builds fairy houses.

legos: 1, my sunroom: 0

365/52 week 28

quickie ... bed is calling.


miss harper and i got crafty. i found some chipboard and paper and mod podge, and let her make a book. she loved the mod podge part.


she's becoming a soapy-hand-bubble-blowing champ.

mario. he's awesome.


storm clouds rolling in.


my child who won't eat hot dogs or bananas or spaghetti, downing a bowl of stir fried bean sprout, edamame, mushrooms, baby corn and chicken.


his new goal? build all of his lego star wars sets. what he does when he goes into him room to build? read.

you heard about the blueberries.

365/52 week 27 (let's go with that)

i did a little math. my figuring came to this being the end of week 27.

then again, i was an english major.

and ... go:


henry's room has become mega lego land.


i went to basilica block party with sue. we saw ingrid michaelson, guster, two songs by v.v. brown, and bare naked ladies. in other words: the perfect day.


marc and i cleaned the garage. harper found three bags of stuffed animals that, ahem, mysteriously were trying to get donated. so now all those animals are in our sun room. in other words: not the perfect day.


henry went to a friend's house, so harper got to be in her own little world all morning.


the minis raced each other drinking shared a mint milkshake at red robin. wicked case of neck freeze times two.


summery, water-type playing with friends.


harper thought mario might like some company during his afternoon ritual neighborhood watch.


(and yes ... i'm pretty sure i missed a week somewhere. i bet i'll catch up in the fall when i take way more photos.)


365/52 week i'll-do-the-math-later

the 365/52 project is past the halfway mark at this point, but by how many weeks? three? i'll have it figured out before the recap of this past week. but first, a photo-heavy look at the three weeks preceding this last one ... because as god as my witness i WILL keep up with this thing!!! (and again, a strict adherence to truthful time line is a bit, well, fuzzy.)



harper takes a "max & ruby" break from her summertime activities of coloring and asking when her brother will get home from school.



doing the "last day of school" dance.


we're gonna paint the house. technically, we're gonna paint the house one shade darker than the gray on the left.



my violet gave me two little blooms.



mario looked noir.



harper got to feed her cousin. i told you about that in the last post.


one day the light was just right and i told harp i could see her brown stripes. she said, "take a picture," so i did. can you see her brown stripes?


adorable little vessels at my cousin luke's studio and gallery, mudlove. like 'em? stick around ... there's a giveaway coming up.


matt and my dad, celebrating their birthdays with first dessert at the boathouse. second dessert followed at matt & becca's house an hour later.



becca's belly's reaction to having just completed a sprint triathlon.



my cousin's stinkin' adorable little boy, moses.



harp said she "desperately need(ed) a foot bath!" after park camp. then she gave herself one.



boston. legal test kitchen. best. lobster. roll. ever.



peaceful, ethereal bird sculpture in the center of the spiral staircase at the marriott renaissance.



boston harbor and world trade center.



just me and him. and boston.



entertaining themselves for 30 mins at the carwash by transforming styrofoam cups into shrek ears.



looking off the back deck toward an amazing sunset.


harp picked out these mint things. then found this deformed one and demanded it have a photo shoot. she can be so weird sometimes.



she can also be quite adorable.



rain on the daisies.



and rain soaks the neighbor's trees.



and ... more rain for the daisies.



a sleepover takes control of the sun room.


i loved smith & hawken's honeysuckle jasmine scent because the honeysuckle reminds me of the hedges of honeysuckle at my grandma mary's house when i was a kid. so imagine my happiness when i found a candle of it at target the other day. then the check-out lady said, "oh, this scent reminds me of funerals!" huh. to each his own.



hey look! it's raining! again! and chipotle's cups predicted it!



the children, browsing barnes & noble.


with every new house that goes up near our lot, our lot suddenly feels smaller and smaller. hope the next-door neighbor leaves us some room.


saw these beautiful flowers at a restaurant and wanted to remember them for my next yard. coleus and lantana and petunias ... oh my!


okay ... glad that's done!!


until next time!



365 week 22

i have seriously thought it was friday for the past three days. it's weird. to have no concept of what day it is really makes the week feel that much longer and more exhausting.

but, i've been told today is thursday, so ... pix. and, more importantly, pix that are in totally random order for some reason:



the birdhouses have been hung, and birds (and squirrels) and have started snacking.



i really need to come up with something they can do this summer that doesn't involve electronics.



love love love. they have adored each other since day one, and i love love love that.



henry's collection of ribbons from spring track season.



last track meet of the season, and it r.a.i.n.e.d. the entire meet. we were soaked.


poetry day at henry's school. his turn to read a poem he wrote. see his best bud, josh, and josh's mom's looks of amusement? here's why:

"heh, heh, heh" by henry skinner

from the poetry anthology entitled "video games"

heh, heh, heh


i'm sneaking downstairs to play a first-person shooter!

turn it on.

wow! wooo!

ick! barf!

weird! freaky!

uh-oh ... dad wants to play now.


we have big, fat bees at our house.