{year} in review.

These aren't the best pictures from the past year. But they definitely summarize 2010.

After living two months in a very unfinished kitchen, a kitchen sink and countertops finally arrived. I still can't believe our kitchen used to look like that. 
 We found out we were pregnant with baby #2.
A very unflattering picture of me. But it sums up the first three months of my pregnancy. So, so sick.
Audrey's first pigtails. Obviously, this is monumental.
 First Easter Egg hunt.The pictures says it all.
 Hit the half-way mark in pregnancy, literally. Little did we know little Naomi would arrive exactly on her due date.
Many summer days were spent on the lake, boating.
Andrew and I celebrated our five year wedding anniversary.
A sweet moment while visiting my sister in Fort Wayne.
County Fair.
 Fourth of July.
Trip to Chicago with my closest girlfriends.
Soaking in the last days of summer at the beach.
 Andrew's brother gets married.
Many Saturdays spent at the Farmer's Market.
 Maternity shots taken only two weeks before her arrival.
Naomi Fae arrives on her due date, in less than 2.5 hours, with no meds. Whew!
 Audrey celebrates her second birthday.
 We get family pictures taken.
Things just seem to flow with two little ones around.
Christmas Sunday at church.
Audrey participates in her first Ugly Sweater Christmas Party.
 Our days are filled with lots of love.

What a year. It's fun to look back and see all of our blessings. What was one of your favorite things from 2010?


if you're happy and you know it.

Then smile real big.
My little, happy doll-baby.

This week has been good. Nothing over the top has happened, but just being is so good, isn't it? Usually, each year right after Christmas the winter blues creep in and I dread the next couple of months. But so far, I'm ready to take them on. It helps that I have some great company {Audrey and Naomi} during the day.

Alright, I must get back to my cereal, which is actually my lunch at 2 o'clock. [Why yes, sometimes I'm that lazy, and I pour myself a bowl of cereal for lunch. And sometimes I don't eat until naptime. I know I'm not the only mama that rolls that way, right?] Then it's on to the daily grind.

Happy week, folks. Take in these last days of 2010!


about the butter dish and other lovely gifts.

I'm determined to continue to get rid of things that I don't just absolutely love. And to cherish the small things. You know, like a butter dish. The husband got me my wish-list butter dish from Anthropologie. Everytime I walk into my kitchen, I grin, because of it. Yes, a butter dish makes me really happy. [Hey, I'm German, that pretty much gives me a good excuse to love butter.] Look how lovely it is.

I also got some other really great, special gifts from my besties that I shared yesterday. Well, by request (Hi, Steph over at Adventures in Babywearing and Lenae over at Just Lenae!) I'm sharing some pictures of what I got.

The earrings I received, found on Etsy. I also got a super cute dish towel from Anthro (not pictured).

The friendship bracelet found on Etsy.

 The wall art handmade with our last name on it. [Also, I have heard every joke in the book. Only if we really did strike it rich with oil. Ha. But, there is a Granny Clampitt in our family. How about that!]

The scarf that makes a difference.

The husband did well this year, with the help of my wish-list of course. Along with the butter dish, he got me a couple of shirts from Anthro (all on sale), a sweater from Ruche, and a beautiful pillow from Etsy.

As if I haven't been spoiled enough this Christmas. My sister got me the fingerless gloves I wanted from Etsy and bow earrings off of Etsy.

My point in sharing all these lovelies? Not to brag or say look at me. But to share about how awesome the people in my life are, that they are thoughtful and giving. And to show how you can shop without hitting the department stores. The majority of my gifts came from Etsy. That means two hands worked hard at making the beautiful pieces. And of course, I wanted to share about how much I love butter. But that was a given.

So what is a favorite thing you received or gave?

[All these pictures were taken by me.]


friendship bracelets aren't just for kiddos.

Yesterday I snuck away for a couple hours. [So thankful Naomi takes a bottle of gold the good stuff just fine.] I went to my annual lunch date-Christmas exchange with my besties. The besties include five girls who have been the best of friends since middle school, which brings us to about 15 years of solid friendship. Do you know how awesome that is, and how grateful I am to have friends like this?

Friends that take time to make you homemade gifts. Friends that search Etsy to find the perfect earrings for you. Friends that buy you a scarf made by African women because they know your heart. Friends that buy you a friendship bracelet. You know the kind, the one where you have half the broken heart and it says best and then she has the other half that says friends. And then you put it together to make one big beautiful best friends heart. Just kidding. I'm not wearing that type of friendship bracelet. Mine is a delicate bracelet with five little sterling silver hearts on it, that represent each one of us.

 Stephanie (basically Audrey's second mama) and Sarah

Susan, me, and Kacie (Sarah and Susan are twins, but I'm sure you already figured that out)

Oh, and you don't have to tell me, I know I have some beautiful friends--both inside and out!


{christmas} in pictures.

The festivities haven't stopped. Blogging is definitely on the back burner right now, BUT I did want to share some quick pictures.

Christmas Eve Day. Always spent at Andrew's Granny and Popaws house.
It's so warm and cozy (in our hearts too).

Christmas Eve. Both the girls in their new PJ's in the bottom pictures, along with cousin Jonathan.

Christmas Day.

Stay tuned. Tomorrow I may even share about my new butter dish I received! [I know, exciting. Totally just intrigued you to come back and visit, right?]



It's Christmas Eve. We are off to visit family. Eat lots of food. Exchange some presents. Get into our new pajamas that we each will receive tonight from my dad, a Christmas tradition that I just love. And remember that Christ is Born.

However you celebrate, enjoy.

Joy to the World

Sleep in Heavenly Peace


here it is.

So about two weeks ago I did this little thing about 11pm, on a whim.

I opened an Etsy shop.

 I figured it was about time. I rave and rave about how awesome Etsy is and how much I love to support small artists and handmade and how much I love vintage items. So, I finally joined in on the fun. [And it is fun, let me tell you.]

The funny thing is. I created a post about my shop just after it opened. Then I kept postponing the post and moved it to the next day and next day and next. Until one day I forgot to cancel it and it posted. So some of you may have gotten lucky and read about my little shop when it was up for about two hours. I quickly deleted it once I realized I was sharing with the world my five readers about my store.

I don't know why. [Actually I do. I'm scared of failure and everyone seeing that.] But it's hard for me to share this little store. It's a piece of me and I'm afraid to give that away.

But here it is.

It's called Rosemary's Cuppa, after my mama. And if you wish, check back often, because I plan on adding things weekly.

[Also, I would love any little bit of encouragement here. I'm nervous about this, if you can't tell.]


just keep smiling.

[The post title has no relevance, really. But I hate always coming up with a title and that randomly popped in my head. So there.]

Hi. It's four days before Christmas and I'm not going to talk about how busy we have been over here. [Because aren't all of our lives crazy right now?!] I'm not going to talk about how much time I have spent in my kitchen in the last week baking like crazy. Or how many times we have seen Santa in the last three weeks. Or how much sleep I'm missing right now. Okay, fine I will talk about that. Audrey talked to herself in the MIDDLE OF THE NIGHT for at least an hour last night. Oh wait, she wasn't talking to herself. I remember now, she was talking to Benny. Benny from Dora. [Current obsession is Dora.] And then she proceeded to try to escape from her room at 5:30 this morning. Nothing like a little watered down juice to coax her into sleeping more. Which got us to 8:00am, thank goodness. [All I want for Christmas is a full-night sleep. Really.]

These last days have been quite nice, I must say. My little sister has been staying with us while she is out of school. And do you know how nice it is to have a helping hand to get one of the girls out of the car when we run errands? She also took Audrey sledding yesterday and they built snowmen today. Which is fabulous, because I hate the cold. I can do snow in December only, because you know, Christmas. By the way, if you plan on sledding anytime soon, bring Audrey with you. She is our little safety patrol. She only wanted to ride the sled that buckled you in and she asked if everyone was okay everytime they went down the hill.

Here's something that should make you smile. Yesterday Audrey was carrying around a sheep and she looked at me as serious as can be and said Mama, can I give Mary her lamb back? And trying not to laugh, I said sure. She goes into another room and yells Mary, here is your lamb. Except she says, Murry, which makes it even funnier. Why yes, Mary does have a little lamb.

One more thing, this little one is 11 weeks old today. And she is quite the charmer.


how many.

Last night I did this weird thing where I pretended to myself that we were done having kids. Done at two kids. Pretty normal. A lot of people stop at two. A lot of my friends are finished at two. I thought, this is our last newborn (although she really isn't so much a newborn anymore), this is the last child I will nurse. [Don't ask me why I was pretending that we were done with kids. I'm strange like that.] No more pregnancies. Done. This is our family.

And in my heart and in my gut, I had that feeling. That feeling that it wasn't right. Which I already knew. But still I wanted to really think about it.

We aren't done, as long as it is in God's plans as well. And even though I'm so tired. And I want my body back. And freedom. And just a date with my husband. And time to go grocery shopping alone. And wow, what a sacrifice it is. It is so, so much more. And totally worth it.

I hear so often-- kids are so expensive. Think about cars and college and the drama. And vacation. But ask me three years ago if I thought we could afford two kids with me staying home. I would have said heck no. In fact, ask me now and I would say no. But somehow [by the Grace of God] we are doing it. So when another one comes along, we will do it then.

So how many? We say three or four. But we'll see.

For now, I'm so thankful for our two beautiful girls.

Christmas Sunday, ready for church.


countdown to christmas {week 3}.

Here we are, just one week away from Christmas. And I tell you what, this whole activity a day thing really makes it seem to come so fast. I'm lovin' doing something fun each day, in fact, I'm just going to admit it, I'm pretty sure I'm more into the Advent activities than Audrey. And I think it's safe to say one of the best things about becoming a parent is you get to experience life through the eyes of a child. In other words, you get to become a kid again.

Last Thursday we made Christmas bells. Simple and fun.

The weekend, was sort of a diaster for me. So Advent activities didn't really happen. We traveled to a wedding in Illinois and basically paid $90 to stay in a hotel and have zero sleep. Mmmkay. Moving on.

Monday was fun though. Our activities included making super easy and delicious Oreo truffles to bring to a Christmas party we went to that night. And Audrey ate a Christmas tree for an afternoon snack. Well, not an actual tree, but a pretty cute one made from cucumbers, tomatoes, cheese, and ranch dressing.
 [Want the recipe? Crush Oreos in a ziplock bag, then blend with cream cheese till super creamy. Roll into balls. Dip in chocolate and top with whatever you want- like a candy cane. Place on wax paper and refrigerate for at least an hour. Eat and say delish.]

On Tuesday (my favorite day so far) we did a lot of baking. We made sugar cookies, decorated them, and bagged them up to pass out to loved ones around town. One of the best parts? My little (almost 15 year old) sister helped out and she cleaned the ENTIRE kitchen for me when we were done. And boy, was it messy.

 [Ignore our windows that need replaced. Remember our kitchen used to look like this. Also? these days, Audrey doesn't do much without wearing some type of tutu outfit.]

On Wednesday we went to Santa Story Hour Extravaganza at our local library in the morning and in the evening we went to a Pajama Party with Santa, a free event our city put on. [Do you know how cute it is to see a room FULL of little kids in their pj's, writing letters to Santa, eating cookies, watching the classic Rudolph movie, and visiting with Santa? Oh my. ADORABLE.]
 [Yes, that is a tutu pajama outfit. Audrey's Papaw got her and Naomi a pair at the Carter's Outlet. Stinkin' cute, I must say.]

So, a week left. Do you have any fun activities you will be doing? Want some other ideas? Go check out Liz at Sugarplum Creations for the link up to the Countdown to Christmas.