Saturday, December 31, 2011

Happy New Year!

I have finished my 365 set on Flickr!  Below is the slideshow from the year, one picture each day. I still have 24 hours to decide if I'm going to start one for next year, I'm guessing I will.  And the picture above.... he is doing more of this lately so I'll be doing more of this now.

Our plans for this evening are looking really nice.  We all have dinner plans at various places and then at 9 we are meeting back here to watch old home videos and the slideshow of my 365 set.  I'm really looking forward to that.

This has been a good year, just about the right amount of all the things you would expect in a year.  And as a bonus, there will be bike riding today..... outside without jackets!

Happy New Year, I'm looking forward to being here more!

Monday, December 19, 2011

What has happened?!

340::365 by LeslieMc5
340::365, a photo by LeslieMc5 on Flickr.

I think I have it figured out..... before "it" happened I had about 45 free minutes each day, and I would use it to blog, take pictures, write... and I really enjoyed that time! But then "it" happened, I call it the Milo effect. So, he's calming down now and he actually entertains himself, a little bit. So, my goal is New Year's! We're all getting ready for Christmas, I'll act like it's sugarplums dancing in my head - but really it feels more like a whole swarm of bees just buzzing around in there! It always comes together.... amazing.

Saturday, November 12, 2011

friday night

Two of our three cars are gone tonight, three of our three kids are gone tonight.  B and I would both like something sweet to eat but neither one of us has the energy to go out and get anything.

Habit this month.... there is a Flickr Pool here, open to anyone and the ladies at Habit choose a few each day to post.  I just love when they do this, I could spend all day looking at all the photos in the pool.

AnneBVinyl - love for friends for Christmas.  I am a big fan of the "snap trays"!  But I know you'll love most of what she has.

In the summer I usually make dinners from single ingredients, it's all so fresh that nothing really needs to be added.  But, as it gets colder and darker I start cooking things that are more involved and my favorite "go to" cookbook is Creme de Colorado from the Denver Junior League.  I also have a folder of recipes that I have collected from friends, family and I wish they were more organized and yet I love seeing all the different handwriting and scraps of papers that the recipes are written on.

And, I planted garlic this week... we'll see.

Friday, November 4, 2011


This week has been a blur.  Last Saturday the Cross Country runners ran at the State meet and the girls team WON!  It was the first State Championship in the history of the school and there is a lot involved after that happens.... all fun, all exciting, but involved.
We also had one home sick one day, Halloween, two preparing for another college visit weekend, the puppy still lives here, the leaves fell in earnest this week, and all the good and bad that comes with living.
So, this weekend we will literally and figuratively, "clean up our yard".  Because all you can do once everything starts falling is to just watch, enjoy the beauty of it, not get caught up in the mess of it and then once all that has passed, clean it up and start over fresh.

The teenagers have a wonderful art teacher, this is their new project.  Receiving photos from a teenage orphanage and then painting/drawing portraits of those kids to send back to the them.  What a gift for all of those teens, both sides of the project.

Monday, October 24, 2011

this weekend

This was a highlight this weekend.... the lowlight was Milo jumping out of the Jeep window while it was moving. He is fine, he looks a little like Rocky Balboa. More soon.

Wednesday, October 19, 2011


We found this hiking trail right by our house!  What a treat!

Flour sifters in the sensory table at pre-school.  I thought of my Grandma Hammig all day that day.

Today one came home sick after school and he and I talked about how it was the very first day this school year that he had come straight home after school.  We have 2 weeks left of Cross Country and then there are a few weeks off before the next season starts.  I am really, really looking forward to that time.  The few weeks that we have are going to be spent getting some games out again, spending time in the basement at the card table or out in the sunroom in the evenings by the fire.  Today I added a school picture to the twins "picture things" and there is only one space left until the entire K - 12 frame is filled.... are you kidding me!    We seriously need a deep breath.

And there are college visits happening, and pumpkin patch field trips, and a young one who now goes out bike riding almost daily with friends and without a phone and I feel torn.  I love that he does not have a phone, that he leaves here and he truly LEAVES here.  It is good for him, he has to make decisions on his own, without checking with me, he is with his friends and he is WITH his friends and yet I am so used to being able to check in that it feels a little unsettling.  But the no phone outweighs the unsettled.

This story.... did you see it?

This Flickr pool - Fall Colors.

And Heather is opening sales for her personalized stationary on Monday.

I am going to TRY to post some ideas for Holiday gifts in this space.  I love finding things online that are unique and being sold by good people and I'll share them here as I find them.

Friday, September 30, 2011


Tonight the two teenagers were on a big, group scavenger hunt with friends and the young one got invited to go to a football game.  So, Brian and I packed up the puppy, the camera, a couple of beers and carryout. A spur of the moment picnic at the lake, such a beautiful night to be out... you know we couldn't have planned this if we tried.  I love it when the thing you needed the most just happens.  I hope your weekend has started off on the right foot, too.

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

on my mind....

This year has hit hard at this house.  Having twins has always been hard, just a little bit "more" of all of it - the good and the bad.  For some reason, this year feels ramped up to a level where we've never been - busy, late nights, going, going, going.  There is a shift happening, they have meetings to go to that don't involve me at all, they have tests that I never even knew they were taking, tonight they left to go serve a meal at the community shelter but had to leave early to pick up a teacher whose car was broken down and called them for a ride, didn't call me, called them.  It is a delicate balance, keeping the peace, keeping the reigns as tight as they need to be, keeping informed without knowing too much and did I mention keeping the reigns..... well, also letting them be as loose as they need to be.  And on the heels of all of this, I have been seeing this article (it's long, but really worth the read)  floating around the internet lately and I am looking for these characteristics in these kids.  And along the lines of kids running and running, this movie.  I think it looks interesting, and at the risk of sounding like I'm making excuses for the busy lives of the kids in this house, I think there is a difference between kids who are running and not enjoying what they are doing and those who are truly engaged in things they feel passionate about - right?  I have it saved in Netflix, I'm looking forward to seeing it.

And the caterpillar in the picture - my rue plant is literally covered with these!  Read more about them here.

This space - I wish I could be here posting more often, I have so many things that come into my mind that I would love to share here, but it just isn't working right now.  But, the dark is coming sooner and things seem to slow down a little bit when that happens, so maybe there will be more time in the coming weeks.

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Full Swing.

Pre-school is back in full swing.  Every year at this time I am reminded of how brave these little ones are to even step through the door into a room full of kids and adults they don't even know.   The first month is all about routine, getting to know each other and.... remember where the bathroom is.  Yesterday a little boy was missing his mom and asked me to hold him, I picked him up and he wrapped his arms tight around my neck, his legs tight around my waist and then went potty all over me.  I didn't even flinch, I just held him for a few more seconds, then took him to the bathroom and got him cleaned up and changed.  Then, probably, the most shocking sight of the day for those kids and my co-teachers happened when I walked out of the bathroom "poured" into a size Youth Medium t-shirt I scrounged out of the paint shirt tub.
Note to self: bring some extra teacher clothes to put next to the extra kid clothes.

Monday, September 12, 2011

car rides

The 2 teenagers are old enough to drive themselves, but today one of them needed to be picked up from practice.  As we were driving home together talking about her day, I realized how much I miss that time.  So, if you're still driving yours around right now, enjoy it.  As chaotic and frustrating as it is, there is a lot of time spent together in those car rides... don't let it slip away.

Sunday, September 4, 2011

all i'm doing right now....

247::365 by LeslieMc5
247::365, a photo by LeslieMc5 on Flickr.

puppy duty. always at my feet. barks if my back is turned towards him. he is a good, calm, no accident kind of guy.... he just needs attention right now. so in this house there is not much going on other than back to school chaos, puppy love and laundry. you aren't missing much.... i can see the light at the end of the tunnel, just give me a week.... ish.

Monday, August 22, 2011

Dear, Lawrence.

My aunt Mary, my grandma Hammig and my mom around 1960 on a bench up at the Campanile.

The Dear  Lawrence project - please read about it here and see the photo gallery here.  There will be a show of some of the prints this Friday during Final Friday's at the Journal World Building (7th and New Hampshire in Lawrence).  The show runs from 5 - 8 and this print of mine will be quietly on display in the shadows of some really great photographers.... go take a peek, if you're around.  And while you're out and about that evening, would you like this at the Lawrence Arts Center?

And I have been waiting for Heather to open her online shop!  You'll love it!

Sunday, August 21, 2011

from Sunday night

The last weekend of summer for the last of the kids.
The first weekend of the school year for the first of the kids.
A tough balance between setting a schedule and living up the last bits.

Monday, August 15, 2011


Milo!  One of the many things that Mac taught us is that we are dog people and that this house is way too quiet without one.  So, today, on Mac's birthday... we brought little Milo into our family.  We all agree that Mac gave Milo a good dose of his calm spirit and we are sure that Mac would not have wanted another day to pass without a dog in this family.  So, here. we. go.  puppy duty...... oh but this face, seriously?

Thursday, August 11, 2011

Our Dear, Sweet Mac

Unfortunately, we had to put Mac to sleep today.  He fought really hard and then the last 3 days he quit eating and drinking and today he stopped moving.  We made the decision as a family and then Brian and I took him in and he went so peacefully. He had a long, full life and was a big part of the "childhood" in this family.  Watching him lying  there so peacefully made us both realize how uncomfortable he has been for months.  I know you will all understand this, when we got Mac, Simon was a newborn and I can remember thinking that he would be a teenager or very close to being a teen when it was time for Mac to leave us.  That happend in the blink of an eye - and so while I mourn the loss of a loyal, dear, sweet dog - I also mourn how quickly this childhood passed.   

Wednesday, August 10, 2011


Braces on - Rainbow rubber bands on - happy with how they look.

 In other news today - our dear, sweet Mac has been really slowing down this summer.  Today we found out that he has a tumor on his right hip.  We are giving him medication and hoping it is slow growing and that we can keep him comfortable for as long as possible.  Give him a good pet the next time you see him, or just send him your good vibes.  He needs them.  It's funny, when we got Mac, Simon was a newborn and I can remember thinking that when Simon reached Middle School, Mac would be getting old and maybe near the end.  At the time that seemed like so far away, yet I can picture where I was when I thought it.   A blink of an eye and in one day - braces and a tumor.

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

braces - round 3

Simon is getting braces tomorrow morning.  Tonight there was a big decision to be made, "what color rubber bands should I get?"  After a lot of team colors, school colors, favorite colors.... here is what he came up with.  The diagram is for the Orthodontist, just so there won't be any confusion.

I can't imagine you would need any de-coding, but just in case... the R is Red and then out from each side spells ROY G. BIV - Mr. Rainbow, of course.

Thursday, August 4, 2011

beating the heat.

Has it been hot where you are?  We have been steaming here, I thought I'd share a few shots of things we have been doing to beat the heat..
setting up the tent in the basement for sleepovers

vacation to a place that is still cool enough for this

cold yellow watermelon in the fridge all the time

movie nights

pool time and waterslides

finding things outside and bringing them inside just to learn about them, and then returning them outside :).
organizing, sorting and getting bedrooms ready for a new school year!

And I have been having a lot of fun looking through my mom's old photos for a project that our local newspaper is sponsoring.  Dear, Lawrence - take a look at the submitted photos here.  Scroll down the article - photo gallery is on the left side of the page. This is one that I submitted, my aunt, grandmother and mom around 1960.  Then and Now.  (this is on a bench at the Campanile, fyi)

Friday, July 29, 2011

Floating along

The end of July, how does summer float by so quickly!  We have been going through bedrooms this week, the latest activity to beat the unbearable heat.  The kids make piles, one to go to the rummage house, one to toss and one of things they would like to be put in their memory boxes.  Earlier this week we went to my childhood home and looked through old memory boxes, my sister's and mine, my mom's and then boxes that went back for many generations.  There were old, old recipes and recipe boxes, maternity clothes from the 60's, childhood clothes that I remember wearing.  Really, nothing worth any money, but all so full of memories.  I have loved seeing what our kids have wanted to put in their boxes.  Since they were born, I have gone to the U-Haul store and bought moving boxes.  I/they usually fill one box about every 3 years, for each child.  It works great, they are easy to label and they stack in the storage room very easily.  When I went home this week, I chuckled when I saw the memory boxes in my mom's attic.... same idea, just a different era......

And one last bit from our vacation - speaking of floating away.  The kids painted wooden boats and we took them into the National Park to float them down some streams.  One of the many things I love about vacation, everyone really gets into childhood mode.  It is especially great for the youngest one, he spends a lot of time trying to keep up with the older ones, it is nice when they are on his level and loving every minute of it.  A few pics from the float.....

Waiting for it to float by

spotting it and..

following it.

Friday, July 22, 2011

Polar Bear Club - 2011 members

We are home.  We are refreshed. We are relaxed.  We went to Colorado for the week and had a wonderful time.  No computers, no TV and only very spotty phone service.  I have a couple of posts for you from our trip, I'm starting with a time honored tradition in this family.  The mountain streams are cold, ice cold.  I remember when I was young, my dad would see who could keep their feet in the longest... I think I made it to about 3 or 4.  Brian and I have been together for about 27 years, and I don't remember a trip to Colorado that hasn't included him sticking his head in a mountain stream at some point.  Once we had children and they reached the appropriate age (whatever that was), they all wanted to be a part of the polar bear club.  Can I show you the 2011 members?  FYI - I am not a member, never have been and never will be, I'm not a fan of the brain freeze - I get enough of those with my migraines.