quick takes + funny photos

Tuesday we bundled up and rode bikes into “the city” to pick up carry-out sushi. The route is a sweet one. We start out on the sidewalks of our neighborhood, and go onward to the trail, riding above and beside the river. Next, we cross over two bridges, take a few blocks and turns, and we’re there!

All the other days this week I tried out new recipes for dinner. Brad has actually started getting home at a reasonable hour (I’m so grateful!), so I’ve actually cooked. I’d reccomend these two: shrimp fajitas (super easy! no mess! mmm, so good.) + slow cooker Mexican quinoa (ditto!).

Here are some quick takes + funny photos from recent South Bend days…


The theme of this collage is probably “pregnancy!” (Are collages totally 2013. IDC..)

  1. Top Right: I have thing for pie.
  2. Top Left: I already have a little pudge. (Round that back to pie.)
  3. Bottom Right: A classy alternative pregnancy announcement. ;)
  4. Bottom Left: We love the library, and make a trip 1x week! We go overboard and bring back a couple dozen books. I’m already digging into my pregnancy ones. So much good info! Eve is digging her pop-up picture books.



We hang out with our besties almost everyday. When we don’t, we miss them! This week we made s’mores one night and caramel apples another. We also had a big queso + quesadilla party last night over Thursday Night Football.

How did we ever survive without family nearby?

This week we took the kids to the zoo. And we make it on campus a couples times a week for the playground + candy wall. Having ND in our backyard is like living on one huge, beautiful playground! …plus Jesus is your neighborhood friend.


Brad there, still really into (and really good at) grilling. We are loving having a backyard and grill as much as we can.

Geena here, still obsessed with thrifting, and this $8.00 vintage maxi. I call it the OG Sonnet James dress.


And- saving thee best for last- we have our FALL FASHION FEATURE.

Dressing Eve is a blast. The #1 concern is always comfort. And, despite all the pink above, people normally think she’s a boy! Like, anytime she’s not wearing a boy. Weirdos.

Soon to be pictured: we both got secondhand parkas with faux-fur hoods. (I’m so cheesy and love matching!) So, I’m pretty excited! Mine was $4.00 (ah!) from Salavation Army (I got him down from $12.00) and Eve’s was $25.00 (which is still so much) from the local children’s consignment, but it came with matching snow pants… so, semi-winning.

We already feel like it’s so cold over here. It’s going to be a looooong Winter.

Happy Weekend! I’m jumping up and down with excitement because we are going up to the middle-o-no-where Michigan for a lake cabin stay! Our friends were so generous in letting us stay there, and we can’t wait!!

I almost forgot this gem from last night..

Seeee ya!

family of :) :) :) :)

Someone is a..

Wait…. What’s a BI SI?!

Let’s try this again….

Someone is a BIG SIS!

The bullets:

  • We’re 12 weeks + 5 days pregnant!
  • Due April 26th.
  • Evey will be 23-months apart from her brother or sister.
  • We can’t wait to find out the sex in 8-ish weeks. We LOVE finding out!!
  • On our second anniversary we squished into a bar booth and scribbled second baby name ideas on a napkin.
  • When I tell Evey about the baby her eyes light up. She opens her eyes wide and smiles in excitement.
  • She even gives my belly kisses and then giggles.
  • I eat non-stop, and ditched caffeine!
  • Dare I say, I’m finally feeling over the ungodly tiredness slope.
  • In the past week I’ve run more than I did the entire nine months of the first time around. This time, I’m trying to stay healthy, but then there’s my kryptonite: ice cream… and Chic-fil-A… and shoot, now I’m thinking about CHIC-FIL-A ICECREAM. Ugh..
  • Something feels different this time. Now that I know how wonderful babies and toddlers are I’m even MORE excited to meet this new little life.
  • We know God has a magnificent plan for this soul, and we are so grateful to be his/her parents.
  • We are so excited!!!

(All photos by my NYC girl + college friend, Ash)

Onward to TMI!

Deciphering cycles PP was a shot in the dark for me. 60 day cycles… 30 days… So while I was a few days late that didn’t mean much. Plus, I was hesitant to take another test- we’d gotten countless negatives the past year. We weren’t trying, but we were open to add another soul to our family.

While visiting Maryland in August (it was just Evey and I there- Bradley stayed back to work), I took a test. At first I thought it was negative and tucked the test under my pillow (which looking back is very weird). I went on with the day. Later, I came back to the faintest little blue “test” line. Wait, is that a line? It looks like a line! It really does… Is that a positive?! It was a cheap Dollar Store test of which I had very little faith in. So, I did a control test with water. NO TEST LINE.

WOO! It was correct. We are pregnant!

For a split second I considered saving the news to share with Brad because our anniversary was a mere one week away. That thought passed as quickly as it came. Knowing my husband would get 100% confused by a photo of instructions and a pregnancy test, I sent him just that. A couple minutes later I received no response, so I went out to the garage to call him.

“Did you get my picture?”
No… Goes to look…
“Wait…. Are we?! Are you?!”
“We’re due August 26th!”

Happy tears. (Me.) Joyful laughing. (Both.)

Certainly, it was the least creative way to share the news… yet very joyful for us all the same. :) :) :) :) WE’RE HAVING A BABY!!!! :) :) :) :)

Heres a photo from my ultrasound with a figure matching our baby’s age at the Women’s Care Center…

Our second child, just 10-weeks young. We love you, baby!

a couple Fall days

(^Happy, healthy, well-fed goat + toddler.)

The past two days we were able to steal away time with famous Dad Brad. (Famous, that’s a stretch. But you’re still our #1.) It was awesome.

Ever since we bid farewell to weekends six months ago, we haven’t had much down time together. Brad works a dream job now- we love it! Nevertheless, it’s definitely difficult for all of us to adjust (especially when your wife is a stage five clinger).

When he is home I feel a mix of: a) wanting to go do a ton of fun things; and, b) wanting to stay in PJs all day, on the couch, and chill. Life with a toddler doesn’t allow much of the latter, so we mixed a little of both.

(No, that is not a non-GMO, home grilled chicken breast in my child’s hand. She ran around the pumpkin patch while munching on Chic-fil-A. Mom of the year.)

(Eveyln could see the way out, but didn’t give us any hints… For the integrity of the corn maze, obviously.)

Yesterday morning we drove into the country to the pumpkin patch.

I’ve wanted to go to a pumpkin patch the past three years. It’s a Fall tradition! Although our desert home never did lend itself so generously to my Fall schema. Midwest Fall is the opposite.

The weather was sunny, but cool, with that sweet Fall breeze. We didn’t even know where we were going, but I was confident we’d find one. We drove over the state line into Michigan (just fifteen minutes from Notre Dame) and saw a couple orange, underwhelming handdrawn signs announcing “PUMPKINS!” with arrows.

We were both glad we turned left. We came across Ashley’s, a pumpkin patch farm right behind the family’s home and run by the sweetest old man. We pulled Evey allong in the wheelbarrel, got lost in an impressive (and free) corn maze, fed the goats (also, free), and picked our pumpkins- one for each family member. (Plus one extra pumpkin because Evey lugged it all the way to the wagon, and we didn’t have the heart to put it back.) it was just us and one other family there. It was so peaceful!

(Evey loves goats. She wasn’t shy about getting up close and personal with them. She just wanted to keep going back to feed them more! …Brad says,'”goats are cool.”)

Sunday we made it out and about too- we went hiking with our SB family. On the trails we walked on toddler time- stopping often for Evey to explore the gravel, dirt, bugs, flowers, and rocks. Right now, she has a thing for rocks, dirt, gravel, mulch, and fallen leaves. She wants to sit in them, dig them up, pour it all over her lap, pick it up in handfuls, and then bring it to me. I’m showered with gifts! And she’s curious. Her world is exploding everyday- boundaries are shattered as she discovers piece after piece of this big new world. It’s really something to witness.

(All in (toddler) time…)

So, for three nights we ate take-out, one night we watched the final Hunger Games movie (really liked it!), biked all over, went to early morning mass, laughed time and time again at Evey’s dancing and funny mannerisms, and enjoyed just being, together. Why does it have to end?

It’s only 9:30, but I’m off to bed. My alarm clock doesn’t seem to mind how tired I am. Rain or shine, she’s up at 6:30, calling from the gate, “mom! mom! mom!” She’s punctual and consistent, which are impressive qualities to have at such a young age. I’m hoping she favorites a new three-letter word before our wake up call. Maybe one that goes like D-A-D.

Sweet dreams, Monday.

Home Tour: our home under the dome

I’m a sucker for a home tour. I especially love when they aren’t by design-savvy blogger who are graced with unlimited interior design resources and talent.

We are pretty much all moved in here, so I thought I’d invite y’all over. Our place is small, so it won’t take long.

Come on in!

Welcome to myyyyyy house! The theme is: Matching is for Losers.

One step in the door and you’re in the living room, dining room, and ten steps from the kitchen! Cozy.

I can actually still vacuum the entire house without replugging the vacuum. I rarely vacuum anyways, but still..

When I saw this sign I thought, “This is exacty how I feel when Brad gets home!!” Then I saw it was in the pet decor section.

Moving on!

 Pinterest Project #1. ^^

Most of our things are thrift store finds. My sister and mom call me a hoarder. I say, atleast I’m an organized hoarder!

Tired from all this walking? Turn around. You’re in the dinning “room!”

We set our home up with Evey in mind. All rooms -besides the bathroom- are baby safe- not with baby locks, but just in how they are organized. There’s nothing on the bottom of the bar cart or tables, everything in the kitchen cabinets is safe to explore, and all glassware is stowed away, up high. We don’t stop Evey from exploring things, and it’s nice to know no matter where she is in the house she can’t break anything or hurt herself.. easily..

Project #2: reupholster. ^^ Never again. ..but we do like how this little reading nook in the toy room turned out.

I appreciate that Evey has just enough toys that it only takes 60 seconds to pick up in here. Evey even started putting the books back on the shelf. Now I just need to teach her how to do the laundry.

Our room is next.

The woredrobe rack ^^ is project #3, and the last for now. Our home was built in 1951, so we have tiny closets (and tiny rooms)! With our floor bed and woredrobe, we look way more hipster than we are. (We’re not hip, at all!! It’s utility, people!)

Lastly, Evey’s room.

Things in here are very simplistic. It’s just a floor bed, some books for reading, and a few frames. We have a baby gate at the door that we shut at night. Although, Evey has been sleeping through the night these days in her big girl bed, which has been blissful!

One of the best parts to our house is the location. We are only a few blocks away from Chipotle (and other restaurants that I’m less obsessed with, like.. Five Guys, Brad’s favorite). We’re around the corner from Notre Dame- you can hardly get closer. It’s so bike and walk friendly- with the coolest on-campus park. AND we have the most generous, hilarious, and kind-hearted neighbor, Denise (Aunt Necie)! We really love it here.

That’s a wrap.

Now I really want to see a home tour from my sister, who is living in Italy, and my other sister, who is just living down the street.

write this down vi

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Before my grandpa passed away last month, Evey and I were able to make a visit home to say goodbye. Evey was asleep in my arms while Grandpa just rubbed her cheeks, forehead, and hair. I got to tell him how much I love him, hug him, and kiss him one last time.

The day before, I held his hand and laid with him in bed. Evey giggled while Jorgi played with her, and Grandpa enjoyed listening. Molly, Jorgi, and I talked about some of our favorite memories with him. I mentioned my twenty-first birthday when we went out for lunch and “my first beer.” It was one of those good years when winter had melted away by the end of March, so the weather was warm on the Eastern Shore and we sat outside. When the waitress came with our drinks she spilled Mommom’s red wine all over his khaki shorts. His “well, alright!” reaction was hilarious. They gave him a free t-shirt, though that didn’t help much with the wine stained shorts. I talked about sleepovers when I was little. I’d sleep right in the middle, or he’d give up his place for the night so I could sleep with Mommom. He talked about the trips to the Adirondack Mountains he and Mommom had taken me and my big sister, Alex, for two summers. We’d stay in a cabin on a lake- swim everyday, take water jugs to the mountain spout to fill, go into town for day showings of whatever movie was playing (in the tinniest theatre), and scrapbook- we LOVED scrapbooking.

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Today we head down to Maryland to celebrate Grandpa’s life. It seemed like a good day to write those things down about my last memories of grandpa and these days with Evey.

At fifteen-months…

…when we play with the “Little People”, and I use a high/squeaky girl voice, and you mimic me and do it yourself, moving the little princesses all around

…the way you freak out giggling and trying to get away when we say “I’m gunna get you!!!!!!!”

…your love of toy trucks and cars- you’ll drag your huge Tonka truck around the house time and time again- it never gets old to you

…when you see dad and mom cuddling or hugging and immediately make a mad dash for us- persistent to be between us

…on our bike ride through campus on the way back from Godmother and Godfathers, and you fell asleep, resting your forehead on daddy’s hand

…when you haven’t seen your dad, who often leaves for work when you’re not yet up and gets back once you’re in bed for the night, for a couple days and he met us at the park, and you just hugged him for five minutes straight- you broke both our hearts

…the brief and rare moments that you just lay back and relax or rest your head on my shoulder

…your love of reading- you bring me or dad a book, and then you sit on our lap with the most proper upright posture and look eagerly for us to begin the story

…when you want something and so you just holler sharply “MOM. MOM. MOM. MOM. MOM!” until I appear

…your sweet, sweet kisses

…when you take your Little People up in your high chair with you and try to feed them some of your food

…when, after one week of being away, we visited Godmother (who you call “ga”) at the Morris Inn- when you saw her you leaped out of my arms and into hers

…the first time we finger-painted, and all you really wanted to do was arrange the paint bottles in a line again and again

…our trips to St. Joseph Beach this summer- you love to toddle down to the water, fill your red bucket, and toss the water into the hole I’ve dug for you

…your excitement to feed the ducks.- you yell “ducks! Duck!”

…your love of dogs, and the puckered-lip enthused face you make when you see them

…your response to music consistently, every time it’s- a shoulder pop and head bob- you love to “dance,” girl

…that you finally sleep through the night!!in a big girl bed!! at fifteen-months!!YAAAY!!

…cuddling up with you, taking three-hour naps in the middle of the day because we can

…days at home just the two of us- playing, cleaning, snuggling, eating, being silly and learning

…our trip to Maryland for Alex and Jake’s crab feast- you loved spending time with the “kids” (your aunts and uncles), Mommom, Nonna, Poppop and your great granddad- you’ve finally warmed up to everyone

These are “the days” for sure. We wish Grandpa were still here for them.


Go Terps!


So much love for his great granddaughter!

Eternal rest grant unto them, O Lord. And let the perpetual light shine upon them. May the souls of all the faithful departed, through the mercy of God, rest in peace. Amen.