Meredith at Martha Chartreuse nominated me for a Liebster! How fun!


The rules:
1. You must link back to the person who nominated you.
2. You must answer the questions given to you.
3. You must pick ten bloggers to be nominated for the award.
4. You must create ten questions for your nominees.
5. You most notify the nominees.


1. Of all your life “Must Haves” (cellphone, car, eating out, shopping, vacations, etc) what would you give up?
I would love to give up my car and walk/bike but it’s just not possible where I live.┬áIf I give up eating out will I still get to eat out while on vacation? Eating out at home would be easy to give up, I usually just do it for convenience sake – there are very few restaurants that we go to on a regular basis that are that great.

2 If you could live in any other city in the United States where would you?
This is so hard for me! I really would love California if the cost of living wasn’t so bad (and being away from my family that lives here). I don’t want to deal with the seasons (snow!) anymore though!


3. If you could live in any other city internationally, where would you live?
London. We actually dream and talk about it often, not that it’s ever going to happen.


4. If you could eat any meal and calories don’t count, what would it be?
All of the cheese/wine/pasta and then chocolate for dessert.


5. Do you have future baby names picked out?
We have lists that are probably 10+ long for boys and girls. We have the hardest time deciding on a name for our babies though – too many good ones.


6. Last book you read?
I’m in the middle of a few books right now – ‘Motherhood Realized’, ‘Prayer for Beginners’,’Is Everyone Hanging Out Without Me?’

7. Blogger trend you are ready to go away?
Overalls – I just can’t even. No words.

8. If you could decorate your home from any store, top to bottom, what would you choose? Budget is not an issue.
West Elm probably.

9. What has been the hardest thing for you to accept about yourself?
My natural inclination towards laziness I think. Or that I’m pessimistic by nature. It’s something I work on though.

10. What do you love most about yourself?
How much I care for, and love, the people in my life.

Who I am Nominating (I can’t think of ten but here are some):

Erstwhile Dear
Stethoscopes, Style, and Grace
The Big White Farmhouse
The Fisk Files
Uncommon Grace

My 10 Questions for my Nominees:

1: What is your favorite season and why?
2: What was your favorite vacation ever?
3: What is dream meal? As in what would you eat if you had one meal left to eat?
4: What is your favorite breakfast food?
5: Are you a morning person or a night owl? Or do you force yourself to be one or the other?
6: Are you an introvert or extrovert?
7: Would you rather go to the beach or the mountains?
8: Describe an ideal day off from work/responsibilities/etc.
9: What is your favorite book of all time?
10: What is your favorite movie of all time?

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on eating in Maui

I don’t have a ton of recommendations. We were there for work for my husband so each day they had a (large) breakfast buffet set up. This is my plate of breakfast food:

(the bowl has oatmeal, they had fresh dates chopped up and golden raisins, brown sugar, date syrup, maple syrup, etc. lots of fresh fruit and always bacon and eggs)

We ate out for lunch a few times. One day we ate lunch at Hula Grill. It has beautiful ocean views and great drinks. The portions were tiny and the husband was still a bit hungry after lunch but I was not. Everything was super fresh and yummy (the fresh tuna pictured below was caught the same day). In addition to the tuna we had fish tacos and pork pot stickers.


The day we went to Lahaina we had acai bowls at Choice Health Bar (the yelp reviews are here) and it was amazing. We walked quite a ways in the hot afternoon sun to get there and we were both a little worried it wouldn’t be worth it. So most definitely worth it. I wish we could have eaten there again but they were closed on Sunday.

acai bowl

acai bowl

I had shave ice from a random place that was really good but not the most amazing thing I’ve ever eaten:

shave ice

Sunday morning the husband went to breakfast alone (he was one of the people ‘hosting’) and I went for a run and got my own breakfast at Island Press Coffee. I had a bacon, egg, and cheese croissant. And a pice of chocolate chip banana bread that was amazing. This was one of my favorites from the trip.


Three of the evenings we had dinner at the hotel as there were work functions. The food was all really good. I would have liked to check out more restaurants but on a work trip you do what is expected of you! The one evening we had free we were invited on a group dinner. We ate at Paradise Grill and the food was very good. I don’t think we ate off the main menu, they had a set menu with choices for us. The Malasadas were amazing though. So good that we were gushing over them and they brought our table a second one each.

(not my picture, but they were basically warm donuts and amazing)

We ate really well. And drank a lot more than I’m used to (not partying every night and getting drunk but you get the picture). I said at one point that I couldn’t eat another bite, or even consider another Mai Tai. I quickly changed my mind though.

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on Hawaii

Or rather Maui, since that is where we were visiting and I’ve been told the islands are all different.


We haven’t every taken a real vacation together, just the two of us. And Maui stole our hearts. It took almost 9 hours of flying to get there but we checked into the hotel and went for a (windy) run and couldn’t stop exclaiming in shocked voices how beautiful everything was. We couldn’t believe we were actually there. There was green everywhere, super lush and beautiful foliage. To the east there were large mountains and to the west the very blue ocean.

We stayed at the Westin Kaanapli and the pictures on the website show the truth – it really is that beautiful. There is a beach behind the pools in the back. There is a little shopping area (Whalers Village) next door that has a few restaurants and cute boutique-y shops to stop at.

The husband had work meetings in the morning. I would eat breakfast with him but then be on my own until lunch. I had to pump so I was usually back at the hotel for that. I spent a bit of time on the beach and walked around the shops. One morning I was exhausted and just watched a movie with the door open and the island breeze blowing in. We had lunch together and then the afternoons were free. We snorkeled one afternoon together at Black Rock (just a short walk down the beach) and the husband jumped off several times. It was a really pretty area. We saw several sea turtles and lots of really bright fish and coral.

(two birds on our railing and black rock in the background, you could see it from the balcony)

Friday was the day we all got to choose an excursion and we chose surfing lessons. It was hilarious and fun and a great new experience. I got up on the surf board once and then was so tired from paddling out into the ocean that I took my surf board back up to the shore to rest. Saturday was our trip into Lahaina where we walked and shopped a bit.

Sunday morning we went to the Psalm Sunday mass at Maria Lanakila which was really nice. The church was beautiful, the priest super hard to understand. After that we had lunch in Lahaina and went back to the hotel to pack. Our flight didn’t leave until 10:30 at night so the husband snorkeled again and I walked around.

psalm sunday

I am so thankful for this trip. I’m so thankful for the time with my husband. I’m thankful we still like each other, that we have things to talk about, and that we can be together in silence too. I’m so (very!) thankful for my mom who stayed with the kids and an amazing teacher from our school who did the evening and overnight shift (and the weekends). I’m so thankful for this beautiful life that I get to live. There is so much joy out there, so much beauty, God is good.

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last week in photos

early morning sun
Monday morning early dentist appointment – the only good thing is the sun coming up.

she asked me to take a picture of her in front of the door with this headband on.

sweet baby with a crusty nose (always lately).

she liked seeing herself and smiled.

nursing Lu
nursing her for the last time before we left. I was worried, but also at peace, about leaving her while we traveled. she did so good!

sun coming up!

reading and snacking on the plane. even that was like a vacation! 6 hours to myself!

Maui airport.

view from our room.

beach view.

first day run
going for a run and taking a selfie on the beach.


our hotel
this is what you see when you walk into the hotel. everything is wide open and it doesn’t look like they have any way of shutting it.

beach day
beach day!

beach time.

toes in the sand
hot sand.

huge cataraman that they use for snorkeling tours.

I mean the sunsets were just unreal.



blue water

beach day
another day at the beach.

rainbow – it was raining up on the mountains.

our sitter sent me these photos of the girls!


I think they had a good time….

a terribly dark picture of us at the last evenings dinner.

real flower lei
they handed out real flower leis to everyone!

flowers on my run Sunday morning.

not a bad place to run, right?

banyan tree.

so tired of my pump!

blog readgin
probably won’t read blogs like this again….

last picture of the beautiful view.

asleep before take off
asleep before we even took off.

home again
got home to a bit of snow and very cold weather!

but I was so happy to see my baby.

three girls
and girls!


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monday: best of last week

:: free printable confession checklist for kids ::

:: `new mom care package ::

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last week in photos


after nap
after nap discussions.

trying to get the baby to say “uh oh”.

crabby girl. oh she was in a mood.

leftover cake
leftover cake from the First Communion and berries.

two tiny teeth on the bottom.

my new favorite dinner. pad see ew (I think) from the Against All Grain cook book.

spelling & feeding the baby
spelling words & nursing the baby. multitasking?

mish mash
how can I resist something called mish mash? it is her breakfast now.

snack! I made cheaters guacamole and used garlic salt instead of fresh garlic. and fresh lime of course. so good I ate the whole avocado.

fell asleep nursing. had to wake her up 10 minutes later to get Ada from school so I just let her sleep.

three busy girls. I went up after nap and found Ada in this costume, asleep.

getting my toes painted for the beach!

she had a big week! she learned to say ‘uh oh’ and started signing more, all done, and waving bye bye. and she raises her arms up in the air for ‘soooo big!’ – this girl brings all of us so much joy. I am constantly whispering prayers of thanksgiving for her.

farm store for tires
some friends told us that a local farm store had tires buy 3 get 1 free and we needed tires on the husband’s car. so we went to the farm store! first time for everything. the girls loved the huge display of animals.

and baby chicks! they had ducks and bunnies too. they were thrilled.

saturday morning reading
Saturday morning is for reading books.

and sunshine patterns.

and post nap swinging on the porch.

folding stars
Saturday night we rented Anchorman 2 and it was awful. Not funny awful but just awful. so I folded origami stars. strange but I can’t stop.

lunch after mass
out to lunch after mass – I think it was called Backyard Burgers. everyone loved it.

full cart
and Sam’s. always going to Sam’s for more food.

first flower
the first flower! hooray!


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monday: best of last week

:: cooking for Hugo healthy breakfast muffins ::

:: in the kitchen – fruity desserts ::

:: living with kids ::

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