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Neat Freak Minimalist

Friday, August 23, 2019

Words & Photography
by Emily Silverstein


I get called "obsessive", "crazy", and "boring"...But there's something about a neat and orderly space that just brings me so much peace.
I can't pinpoint the exact moment I became a compulsive neat freak/minimalist. I think I slowly morphed over the last ten years into what you see now. I get called "obsessive", "crazy", and "boring". I get told that I'm depriving my children of their childhood. But there's something about a neat and orderly space that just brings me so much peace. And I promise my kids aren't deprived in any way. So call me what you will, but I'll just keep doing my thing. Have I mentioned how much I love white paint??

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Croissant Bread Pudding

Thursday, August 22, 2019

Words & Photography
by Keara MacNeil



I have a new recipe up on my stories for Croissant Bread Pudding and it's to die for if I do say say so myself.

Croissant Bread Pudding

Ingredients
4-5 "day old" croissants
3 eggs
2 cups milk
1/2 cups sugar
2 tsp vanilla
1 tsp cinnamon
1/8 tsp nutmeg
pinch of salt

Directions
1. Preheat oven to 375F.
2. Break apart croissants and spread out in a grease square pan.
3. Mix eggs, sugar, cinnamon, nutmeg, salt, and milk. Pour mixture over croissants.
4. Let sit in fridge for 6-24 hours (I soak mine overnight).
5. Sprinkle cinnamon and sugar over top of the bread pudding and bake for 35mins. or until a knife comes out cleanly.
6. Let cool and serve with rum raisin sauce and ice cream.

Rum Raisin Sauce

Ingredients
1 cup heavy cream
1/2 cup raisins
2/3 cup packed brown sugar
3-4 tbsp darm rum

Directions
1. Combine ingredients in a saucepan and bring to a boil.
2. Reduce heat and cook, stirring frequently until mixture is thick and syrupy.
3. Remove from heat and serve.

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This School Year

Wednesday, August 21, 2019

Words & Photography
by Kelly Cone



As a former schoolteacher and piano teacher, August brings so much excitement for me on a deep instinctual level. Change is on the horizon for our family, and organizing the schoolroom (especially after the move where we basically threw it all in there!) has also been a way for me to clear my mind and reset.

We’ve had to take a step back and determine what our priorities are as a family so that when the busy days come, we’re not just swept up in the tyranny of the urgent. There are so many "shoulds" when it comes to parenting, and even more when it comes to homeschooling. This year I have a third grader and second grader (and a toddler who likes to throw things at me!) and that blows my mind because I used to actually TEACH third grade for online homeschoolers!! How on earth do I HAVE one of those already?
She told me to "unschool" myself, let go of all the "shoulds"...and evaluate what our family actually likes and needs. How do WE learn best? What is our inherent rhythm as a family and how do we honor that? 
My educational philosophies have changed so much since those days, and the ideas and curriculum choices were swirling around in my head Iike crazy. So I emailed my trusty wiser friend who homeschooled all her kids and asked her for a giant slap in the face, rhetorically speaking. And she delivered. She told me to "unschool" myself, let go of all the "shoulds" (she doesn’t even know I’m an enneagram 1! This is our constant battle!) and evaluate what our family actually likes and needs. How do WE learn best? What is our inherent rhythm as a family and how do we honor that? As I sat with all of it (initially bummed because I wanted someone to TELL me what to do) the answers were surprising and I can’t wait to share them in the weeks to come! Needless to say, I’m SO excited for this school year!

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Back To School Celebration

Tuesday, August 20, 2019

Words & Photography
by Cassie Arnold


Something about a handful of balloons, a homemade cake, and brand new school supplies gets our sensitive-hearted girl soooo excited to start a new adventure. 
Back to school celebration. We started a tradition last year of taking Fin back to school shopping solo and then following it up with a huge celebration. Something about a handful of balloons, a homemade cake, and brand new school supplies gets our sensitive-hearted girl soooo excited to start a new adventure. And let’s be real...I love any excuse to be festive and bust out the helium tank.

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You Know Best

Monday, August 19, 2019

Words & Photography
by Clarissa Esquivel



And to think we are in the very last stretch of nursing. Wow! Ten months of breastfeeding Zeke, and, yet, I wish I could say it has been wonderful. But the honest truth is, I really just want my body back. Does that make me sound selfish and ungrateful? I’m sure some of you may think so.

If you think about it, how awesome is it that I was able to feed my baby this liquid gold that my body has created? I think back to all the special moments we have shared together, just us two, and also knowing that mama is his safe haven, and nothing and no one can comfort him as well as I do. Yes, all of that is great...

But then there are the moments we don’t like to talk about. The moments where I leave the baby with Dad and not even two hours later he’s texting me freaking out because the baby just won’t. calm. down. Or the moments when the baby starts to teethe and you literally become a human pacifier, and you have no choice but to nurse 24/7. Or the, "I have to schedule everything around feedings because the anxiety of feeding your kid in public becomes all too real." Do you even know how many times I’ve asked my 8-year-old to grab his baby brother a snack because I’m stuck on the couch nursing?
Do having these feelings make me a bad mom? Of course not. But instead of feeling accomplished that we made it this far, I'm feeling embarrassed that I’m wanting to call it quits because it’s become too much for me to handle.
There are so many countless hours where I feel like I’m not doing enough because I’m stuck with a baby on my boob. These are some of the things I would normally never even dare to share on here because I’m too afraid of judgement and what people may think about me. Do having these feelings make me a bad mom? Of course not. But instead of feeling accomplished that we made it this far, I'm feeling embarrassed that I’m wanting to call it quits because it’s become too much for me to handle.

Breastfeeding is all so beautiful and raw and hard. And for those mamas who do it with so much grace, I applaud you. And to those of you who only breastfed for 1 week, 1 month, or didn’t even bother to try at all...you’re all just as wonderful.

Moral of the story is, don’t be ashamed or too embarrassed to talk about the decisions YOU decide to make for YOU and YOUR babies. You are mom and YOU know best.
 

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