Monthly Archives: November 2012

mini rag quilt – done!

Black Friday shopping?




I’ve been waiting to finish up Kaden’s mini rag quilt for what feels like forever. Lucky for me, I found made the time yesterday! I’m guessing it probably took me 2 hours total to sew and cut, though I truly have no idea as between Kaden’s feedings and Lil’s needs the quilt took me all day.


Why a mini instead of a full rag quilt? While I really like the fabric, I wasn’t completely in love with it for a full quilt. When I find something I like for that purpose, I’ll make him a big quilt, as well. At the rate we’re going, he might have one by the time he’s 18! 😉


I’m so glad it’s done, and it looks like Kaden is, too!



matron of honor.

I’ve been meaning to post this for a while. Why it occurred to me this morning, randomly, I’ll never know.

I had the honor of serving as the Matron of Honor in my youngest sister’s wedding in September. It was a perfect evening … a beautiful evening for a beautiful couple.

Below is my speech. Thankfully, my younger sister shared the role (as Maid of Honor), so she did the funny speech. I’m the much more practical, advice giving sister, so my tone reflects my boring personality.

Good evening! For those of you who don’t know me, I’m [minski], the oldest sister of our fabulous bride. I’d like to start by congratulating Mr. & Mrs. [Y], and thanking you all for being here tonight to celebrate the beginning of their marriage.

I could tell you tonight about Alli’s Barney bag and her threats of running away from home at the young age of 5. We could laugh over the stories her being secured in her high chair with knee highs, but I’d embarrass myself and my sister April by telling you that we made her cry on purpose – knowing she couldn’t escape. Don’t tell Alli, but I’m certain it’s one of the reasons she’s so tough and no nonsense to this day. There was also the time she was tied to a steel pole in our basement, but instead of going there, I’ll leave a recap of those antics up to our other sister, April. Instead, I’d like to share a few pieces of advice I passed along to Alli & Billy shortly after their engagement.

  • First, may you live each day to its fullest and truly enjoy each others company.
  • Don’t let the little things stand between you – believe me, it’s not worth it.
  • Always tell each other “I love you” before falling asleep at night.
  • Make time for each other, but be sure to make time for you, too. The better person you are as an individual, the better spouse you will be.
  • You won’t always understand each other, but that’s okay – you’re just different, and that’s not a bad thing.
  • Don’t make big decisions on your own.
  • You’ll see the happiest of days, and you’ll encounter some rough days, too. Together you can make it through anything.
  • Go places and do simple things together – life’s too short, and you can’t make the time up later on.
  • Don’t forget those who got you where you are today – family is what you make of it, whether they be relatives or your closest and most dear friends. These are the people who will always be there for you – through it all.
  • Take a second tonight to look around – you’re surrounded by the people who mean the most to you, and they’re here because they love you.

Alli, thank you for your love and friendship over the past 23 years. You’re an amazing sister with a heart of gold, and I know you’ll be a fabulous wife, as well. Billy is one lucky guy to have found you! And on that note, Billy, this girl is loyal to a fault, and I’m sure you know just what I mean. Don’t be afraid to reel her in from time to time, okay? Stick up for her; she’s bound to be hurt one of these times. And please try not to make her mad; I’m sure you know as well as I do that our girl can hold a serious grudge! Finally, you’ve lived with her for long enough to know that she is not a morning person, so I won’t remind you of that. But hey Billy, she’s really not so much of a morning person, okay?!

Wishing you both the most bright, amazing future together … a toast to Alli and Billy, as they begin their life together as one!

take your poppy to work day.

Oh, the innocence.

Lily: “MaMum, you can take Poppy to work with you ichuwant.”

Me: “Okay, put Poppy in my bag and I’ll take her with me today! She’ll have fun at work with me!”

And in my work bag Poppy went. She’s had a big day, to say the least.

She started out in my office …


… working from both the ball and at my standing desk. She updated appointments, reminders and due dates in my planner for me, and even managed to find time to take a nap in my chair!

From there, she made her way around the office …


… working in various offices, waiting around for some water cooler talk (It never came, in case you were wondering.), and checking out what was happening in the yard out back. She sent some faxes, replied to a few emails, and answered a few phone calls for my colleagues in need of help. Poppy even managed to grab a lollipop from the office next door!

The next time “Take Your Poppy to Work Day” comes around, I’m sure she’ll be ready to go!

Note: No stuffed animals were harmed in the creation of this blog post.

these days: environment.

My sweet girl. You’ve grown so much, yet remain so little. I thought it would feel different to watch you grow. That I’d see distinct phases of development. Instead, it all flows together – small milestones along the way that mark larger milestones when I look back in time.

I love listening to you talk. I treasure our conversations and wish I could capture each and every one of them. These days, you’re noticing things in your environment – things I didn’t even know you knew about.

  • You’ll comment on the frost covering the ground and how Mr. Sunshine will come out and make it go away.
  • You see dark clouds and think it’s going to storm. Many times, you are absolutely right.
  • You notice when it’s getting dark, recognizing that when it gets dark, it’s time to get our “jams” on.
  • You tell us when your toes are cold.
  • When we ask you to turn the sound down on the iPad, you listen.
  • You want to know what we’re doing each day.
  • One of my latest favorites is, “MaMum, whatchu making for dinner?” Oh. My. Heavens. That melts my heart. Most of the time, you’ll ask to help me. No, you’ll tell me you’ll help me. “I’ll help you, MaMum. Pick me up? I can mix it for you!” And usually, you do.
  • This morning as your brother was crying inconsolably, you said, “Maybe my brother wants to go to Lucy’s.” You’re right, sweetie – maybe he did.
  • Good grief, do you ever love to make “pa-kern.”
  • “MaMum, I tell you something in your ear.”
  • You laugh when Dada drives the truck. “That’s silly!”
  • You’re letting Huck around you more and more. You used to immediately reprimand him when he even came near “Tags,” your sleeping bag, your Hello Kitty pillow. And he was never allowed on these things. Now he often lounges on the couch cushion next to you, right on your sleeping bag or pillow, and you don’t say a word.  Of course there are the times you want your things to yourself, and you don’t hold back in saying, “Huck, get DOWN! Get down, Huckie Baby!” It’s hilarious!
  • You’re so into macaroni and cheese, and are quite specific in which type you want – pumpkins, Madagascar, etc.
  • The radio in the bathroom has to be turned off. I need to turn the fan on. It’s not bright enough, so we need to open the curtains or blinds. The television is “too loud for me.” You’re quite specific these days about what’s happening around you and just how you want it to be.

I simply love watching you grow, little Lily. You’re becoming a beautiful little girl inside and out, and I’m so incredibly proud to call you mine. Your MaMum loves you more than you’ll ever know.

writing prompt – lonely.

I’d love to say that I’d follow a daily blogging prompt and post here regularly, but I know that won’t ever happen. Hey, I’m just being honest. I’m lucky I remember to brush my teeth and wear deodorant every day, people. But there’s no harm in picking up a daily prompt from time to time, right? Today’s prompt comes from The Daily Post and is this:

When was the last time you felt really, truly lonely?

To give a two word answer to that question, last night. But it thankfully doesn’t happen every night.

As a mom to a newborn (Er, I guess he’s technically an infant now at 5.5 weeks …), the nights can be long. Last night was one of those, providing me with three choppy hours of sleep before 5 am. Ouch. On nights such as last night, I begin to meltdown. The lack of sleep coupled with a fussy baby can make any mom insane (Or so I like to believe. Maybe it’s just me that’s crazy …). On top of the already chaotic night, last night brought an added twist. Our dog woke the sleeping 3 year old, taking away what sleep time I would have gotten.

On nights like these, I can’t help but feel lonely. The rest of the world is sleeping. Heck, so is my husband in the next room. I’m alone, fighting this battle that seems to be never-ending. Heck, I’ve got months of this ahead.

I let my thoughts get the best of me. I begin to think of all I’ve done wrong along the way. I scour over my shortcomings, wishing I could find the devotion to change and fretting over how I’ve tried and failed so many times. I think of a recent happening that angers me to my core – reminding me of just how the “black sheep” phrase feels and desperately wishing it wasn’t happening to my family; wishing I could just let it go. The to-do list runs rampant through my mind, and I wonder how I’ll manage to get it all done. I think of what I’d do differently. And how I’ve fallen short thus far. I think about what I want to do with my life … and realize I’m halfway done. I wonder how much longer he’ll be awake – how much longer I’ll be sitting around thinking the most depressing of thoughts. I fear putting him down, knowing he will wake up, and anticipating many more hours with only my thoughts. There are tears. Cold, lonely tears.

I’m thankful this loneliness doesn’t happen every night. At the same time, I hate how incredibly lonely I feel when it does happen.

As they say, though … this too shall pass. The sun rises each day, and that’s enough to launch me back into reality.

happy halloween!

Untitled To hear her shout, “Trick or treat!,” “Happy Halloween!,” and “Thank you!” made it all worth it.

I didn’t want to take them out for Halloween this year. I’ve been in a funk since Saturday, and the cabin fever that was a direct result of hurricane Sandy certainly didn’t help. I hadn’t prepared costumes. Hadn’t figured where we would go. Had made no plans.

But then mom guilt set in. I had to take them out for trick or treating. She’s at such a fun age, and it’s his first Halloween, for Pete’s sake. IMG_2736_e1 What I needed to do was snap out of my funk.

It was cold, and to take a 5 week old baby out just didn’t seem right – though I would have if it had been the only option. We could have gone to a few houses in the in-laws’ neighborhood and we would have been just fine. However, inspiration struck around 4:45 pm, and after checking online, I found that one of our local malls was having an indoor trick-or-treat, one that had been re-scheduled due to Sandy.

She had the dress she wore in my sister’s wedding just two months ago. Easy princess. And he had skeleton pajamas. Done!

Off we went – and I’m so glad we did. She was so into it, fearlessly chirping Halloween phrases without prompting from MaMum or Dada. IMG_2730_e1 And we only needed to remind her of “Thank you” from time to time. He collected a few comments here and there as I walked around the mall feeding him a tasty Halloween bottle (Yeah, right!).

They rode one of the cars in the middle of the mall. She wanted to play at the in-mall playground, but we were able to divert. She chose a lollipop over a cookie at the Toll House store. (Thankfully they gave a mini cookie to mom!) Seriously, who does that? We saw more than one DJ Lance, several fairies, and Woody from Toy Story. We laughed over the hideous Pittsburgh Steelers throwback jersey for sale in the sporting goods store (Go Stillers, but seriously, the bumble bee looking uniforms are horrible!!!) We were warm and so happy together.

The candy doesn’t much matter to her, and I like it that way. Next year will probably be oh so different. But for now, I’ll savor this simple season in her life.

We had fun – and I’m so glad the mom guilt won. These memories are priceless.