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Loving the Minutes

Posted on June 10, 2014

This weekend we worked hard. Our garage had been a disaster from the long winter, into kitchen renovation, into spring, into lacrosse etc. Every day we’d come home through the garage and feel defeat at its state. Saturday we attacked it as a family, carting everything out (Thanks, Houzz), sweeping, dusting, and then reorganizing before loading some of it back in the garage.

We earned a Sunday of whatever we wanted; we chose a trip to the lake as a family. It was perfect, not too hot, not too buggy. Briar discovered bits of charcoal and proceeded to leave the island a message.

Thank you


We watched turtles sunning on the rocks until the mama turtle said it was time to go. Finley and Briar sat together long after the turtles were gone. I inhaled the harmony and whispered a soft thank you to the lake.


Avery carved out some time alone, balancing a rock on her head and chanting. Every so often she’d pop one eye open and chuckle in my direction. We laughed together as she campily fluttered her fingers into her idea of a meditative pose. If there is a happy baby yoga pose, on Sunday there was a content mama pose too.



Sean dove into the lake as the girls watched and squealed. He swam beneath the water and I watched the stripes of his suit grow fainter and fainter. I thought how lucky I was that life managed to lead me to this lake-loving guy and then to this family.


I followed the girls laughter as they turned from the jumping rock to meet Sean at the water’s edge. They placed a hand on one another’s back and murmured with each step, “Don’t run. Do the buddy system. Careful.” They looked like popsicles.


Later I tried my hand at paddling on the mini-kayak we bought the girls. I’m nearly 30 pounds over the recommended weight, it teetered ominously and quickly took on water. Trying to balance with the threat/promise of a cold dip was exhilarating. The girls called out, “Go, Mom!”


I laughed as I rounded the point of the island and was hit with a rush of waves. The girls and Sean whooped and hollered at my shaky progress. I balanced the paddle in my lap and then tipped as I tried to scoop the water out.


I came up laughing without losing my Fountain Square Outfitters hat. The water felt every bit as good as I imagined. Treading water I closed my eyes and bobbed in the channel. I heard the waves tap dancing on the rock and the trees rustling in the breeze. I let out a happy shout.



They all cheered and then the girls swam to my rescue. “Mom, mom! We’re coming. We’ll save you. We. Will. Save. You!!”


Later, after we made a campfire and roasted marshmallows for s’mores we packed up the boat to make it home early enough to not push Sunday-play too far into Monday-prep. No one complained or asked for more time, we were sated one and all. Finley helped Sean as we headed into dock.


Avery snapped a few pictures, all of which I cherish, but this one encapsulates the sentiment of the day—arms wrapped in love and a laugh on the tip of my tongue.



Our life is not uncomplicated and it isn’t often that there isn’t something that I could find to complain about, but I’m working on finding the thread of happy through the sticky. I feel so very lucky to have these moments.

Working Guilt, Step-parents, & Designer Jeans

Posted on June 5, 2014

I’ve been in Lake Placid for a conference. It’s strange, usually I am pretty on top of times when I need to go away, mostly because it really presses my fret button. Not this time, this time it sort of snuck up on me. I moved slowly, stopping just short of saying that I didn’t want to go. I tried to keep the goodbyes light with the girls, guessing that I wouldn’t I have it in me to keep them cheery. I hit the road late and have spent every minute since trying to get my head in the game. Last night while I was at dinner with clients and friends Sean texted me.     I gasped, everyone at the table turned, “What?…

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The Ones That Stick

Posted on June 3, 2014

I am guilty, from time to time, of trying to be an architect of memories, thinking that if I arrange the art project just so or if I plan the adventure out with care, then I can slip moments in time in each girl’s heart that they’ll remember for the rest of their lives. I work at creating these moments like a puzzle, turning ideas in my mind, sorting options, and then putting my head down until I make the pieces fit. The weight of wanting, needing, to nurture memories can be tremendous. Every once in a while something happens and I am completely awestruck by how the girls are memory tenders themselves. “Hey mom, can you wake me up early to work on the…

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