Waiting patiently for gymnastics class.




Sydney's elementary school had a Halloween Parade for all the kids to show off their costumes. The parking lot was packed and the kids were as adorable as expected - especially our tooth fairy Sydney and our witch Isabelle.


"hold hands, TT?"

Some days it just hits me - Yes, I AM happy to be back in Massachusetts and close to my family... very happy in fact.

new car

Okay so we got it for free on the side of the road a year ago, but today when I dug it out from the back of the shed, the kids acted like it was brand new. It took all day to charge - but Trystan couldn't have cared less & he sat patiently in the drivers seat all morning long. Just sitting. And once I plugged that battery in, our little hot rod was painfully slow... I mean, Penny could have kept up with this thing, and she's still immobile. But just look at his face. He couldn't be happier!



This morning I watched my little girl climb on the school bus & head off to her first day of Kindergarten. To say she was excited was a huge understatement. I listened as she told Trystan she would have Gym class today, "and there are scooters in there!" she remembered from her quick orientation last week. "and there's a RESTAURANT at school and you can pick what you want!!"
When I saw the bus coming, I stole a quick kiss saying "Give me a kiss now Syd do I don't embarrass you when the bus is here..." and get this - she looked me square in the eye, smiled, and said, "you NEVER embarrass me. Mom."
Aww, my heart melted and then -
"uh, Yeah you do!" and up she climbed onto that big yellow bus without so much as a wave or a glance back.



cook dinner & dessert on a fire. check.
What?! JiffyPop is TOTALLY dinner...


strike that

I spoke too soon.

so close

but still holding on...


best baby ever

9:30 & just waking up - SMILING. That's my girl!


first day

Kindergarten Orientation!!



Today I peer pressured Tom into calling off work so we could pack the kids in the van and head a short hour north to York Beach in Maine where Lisa & the girls were enjoying the last day of their annual cottage rental. The weather was gorgeous, the waves were amazing and the kids were ecstatic, while us adults were quickly exhausted...
Sydney learned how to boogie board and was very proud to ride the "super huge" waves (in shin deep water) while Trystan preferred to dip in the ocean and then immediately faceplant into the dry sand - shake&bake style.
I'm not quite sure where these two got their love of all things sandy (I'm that mom who yells "NO SAND ON THE BLANKET!" whenever anyone comes within a three foot radius) but I did manage to get over my sand aversion long enough to build a giant sand turtle with the kids. They fought over whose shells made the best eyes...
By late afternoon we were ready for a quick hose-off & a ride into town on a TROLLEY to grab dinner and peruse the beach shops.
Check out these stachetastic glasses the girls are sporting - Papa this ones for you!


"cool bus"

Trystan may call it a "cool bus" but on this hot August day - it was anything but! As excited as Sydney was to check out her new ride to Kindergarten, I was equally impatient for our ever-friendly bus "driver" to end the parked introduction to the rules of the road & the "hands & heads inside the vehicle at all times" lesson & get to the emergency exit out that itty bitty back door so we could get out of the lollipop-hyped sauna. Luckily Sydney & Trystan weren't nearly as bothered by the heat & I feigned excitement long enough to get Sydney super siked to hop right on that bus & not look back when the time comes... Wow. Is my baby girl really starting school already?!



big day

After months of "pretty pleeeease," we finally braved the Piercing Pagoda at the mall. Syd is beyond excited! And aside from a small, "OW" and a quick "Mamaaaa" she barely even flinched. Yes, she even impressed our master piercer "Fio" who, by the way, gave both Sydney & Trystan TWO lollipops at 7:30 PM. Thanks Fio.



I'm not sure if I've mentioned it before, but I've borrowed an idea I stumbled across online and created our family a "bucket list" (so to speak) of things we hope to do before the end of summer. Today we tackled "Build An Outdoor Fort" or, ahem, I did - with Penny strapped in her carrier and Trystan ransacking the garage while Sydney asked for a juice box, a popsicle, a play date & anything else her little heart desired. I nearly quit each and every time someone cried or complained and when Sydney finally begged to "just watch a movie" I almost caved. But alas, once the blanket went on the ground and the trucks & ponies moved in, the kids finally took an interest. Even Penny seemed to calm as I lay to nurse her and read them all a book. And now, as I sit at the window watching Sydney play ponies with her feet in the grass while Trystan rocks his baby doll to sleep, I understand that this roller coaster job of mothering is truly worth the ride.
Build An Outdoor Fort - CHECK.



I've been having some trouble posting this week from our fun-filled family vacation at this beautiful dude ranch in upstate NY. Forgive me if some posts arrive late - most of my emails have been returned and/or delayed. As you can imagine, the strength of the ranch wifi isn't the cowboys' top priority... In the meantime, I'm going to cross my fingers and hope this goes through.

giant carrot little baby

The kitchen puts out a bucket of the most enormous carrots every night
for guests to feed the horses. Penny is holding one of the smaller



This week I discovered Trystan "counts" to 14! A few weeks ago Nana told me he could count, but I never taught him, so I kinda assumed she was proudly exaggerating, but lo and behold while walking downstairs the other day, I heard him counting each step along the way. I couldn't believe it. I'm still trying to figure out where he picked it up from (hide @ seek maybe?) and what other tricks he's hiding from us. I attempted to record him counting. Hear for yourself.


first harvest

Lettuce, Beans & Peas, Oh My!


mini van full

On the way to the fireworks!

6 weeks

and smiling!


5th of July

Morning after late-night fireworks at Nana & Papa's:



Tonight we tried out an idea I saw on Waffleizer.com which claimed you
can make ice cream sandwiches using regular old cake mix cooked in a
waffle iron. And this family is always up for anything involving our
beloved waffle iron. So lo and behold, it works! Regularly prepared
cake mix cooked just the same exact way as our typical waffles... fill
with a layer of ice cream and you've got one happy family!


finally - photos

At last, we are getting a bit more accustomed to being a family of (gasp) FIVE! We are all starting to settle into our new roles, while slowing our pace to fit our new family schedule (or lack thereof). And somehow amidst it all I managed to steal some time to edit the photos from little Miss Penelope's birth. It only took me a month... (plus yet another week to upload & post!)
Big thanks to Lisa who braved the delivery AND managed to capture some amazing images, and to Nana who, unbeknownst to me, picked up the camera when the kids met their new baby sis just minutes after birth and took our very first family photo.
What a proud moment it was!


We stopped at the arcade, where we enjoyed a couple endless games of skeeball - literally. The kids couldn't seem to roll the balls far enough, so it was more like a game of catch...
But we somehow managed to win enough points for a couple toy soldiers, a miniature Doberman figurine and two tiny packs of M&Ms which Trystan is obviously very proud of.
And now, as could be expected, Sydney is complaining that she "lost Rolo!" in her volleyball court sandcastle and Trystan wants me to take the sand off his candy...


Kimballs added a few more roosters!


my "babies"

Penny's already learning to share...



Why yes I did sew her that bonnet - how could you tell?


4:00 am

Sleepy snuggles. My favorite!

HEY! ride

I'm hiding the keys as I type...





Can you guess what Sydney studied at school today?