datestampUSETuesday, September 30, 2008

Day 7: 30 Days of Balance

I have discovered that I live more vibrantly when I allow myself time to fuel my being and energize my spirit in whatever way is necessary - a vacation, an evening walk, a movie night, time alone, taking a class, or just having a chance to exercise some creativity. The recent obsession has been jewelry. I haven't put the gems away in over a week - lucky for all of us, I'm running out of steam.


datestampUSEMonday, September 29, 2008

Our Neighborhood Shoppe

*If you want to come and didn't get an email or flyer, contact me for directions at


datestampUSESunday, September 28, 2008

Day 6: 30 Days of Balance

I am absolutely loving my current church calling as primary chorister. Teaching children these wonderful primary songs is instant gratification. I spend a little time prepping and by the end of the hour we've learned something new (hopefully) and had fun along the way. I never regret the time I've spent preparing to share something exciting with these hopeful, happy, little sponge-like brains.

Pictured above is my little bag of tricks.


datestampUSESaturday, September 27, 2008

Day 5: 30 Days of Balance

Embracing my Saturday duties as soccer mom to three little super stars; meanwhile, trying my best to not let the never ending laundry loads of jerseys and stinky socks takeover the weekend vibe.


datestampUSEFriday, September 26, 2008

Day 4: 30 Days of Balance

love love love having a good stack...a little reading each day keeps my mind fresh and my perspective ever changing. I always wish for myself more time to read.


datestampUSEThursday, September 25, 2008

Day 3: 30 Days of Balance

Allowing myself a moment to get giddy with ANTICIPATION about the upcoming crop of angels made by a lovely lady down the street who also happens to be an artist and world traveler. She picks up little snips of ribbon, fabric, and baubles during her travels and then puts her artistic hands to work in creating these beautifully artistic angels. She hosts a little gathering every October and it is absolutely breathtaking to see the whole host of angels together, before each one disperses to the home of its lucky new owner. Isn't anticipation exhilarating? In my family we've always laughed about how the months leading up to a vacation are almost as exciting as the vacation itself. I think my heart literally quickens when I have something fabulous to anticipate...

Until then.


datestampUSEWednesday, September 24, 2008

Day 2: 30 Days of Balance

I don't have to look far for inspiration. My sweet next door neighbor is an 80+year old widow who lost his wife over ten years ago. In his front yard where every passerby can enjoy, he has a beautiful flower garden dedicated to her and faithfully tends to it nearly every day; even in September when the fruitful months are nearly gone. I love that love ages. I love that it transcends time, and dare I say *blossoms* from giddy hand holding to lonely garden tilling. I love that I'm surrounded by love.


datestampUSETuesday, September 23, 2008

A Shared Personal Journey

My life has recently been running at a hectic and sometimes nearly frantic pace. I am grateful for the familiarity and consistency that the return of school has offered us...but what is most sobering is how each day seems to fill itself up to capacity. As I responsibly tick each daily item down, I breathe a sigh of relief yet only to notice the sun setting outside of my window.; another day gone by. The realization of time marching on whether or not I've fully lived that day quickly ties up knots in my stomach and urges me to grab tightly a hold of each day and beg it to slow down just a little.

This leads me to a little experiment I've been thinking about for awhile now. I'll call it *Thirty Days of Balance*. This word *balance* has been bouncing around in my head for some time. I recently read an excellent article by a university professor encouraging balance (in many forms) for an emotionally and physically fulfilling life (I wish I could remember where so I could link). It is also a personally meaningful word in that it has often been used in blessings I've had from various spiritual leaders in my life. I have chosen today to start my little experiment because it marks the first day of the Libra, the seventh astrological sign in the Zodiac: my sign. Now, I'm not a big believer in mythological signs but I can appreciate the meaning behind my symbol. Libra is the only inanimate symbol of the zodiac, all others representing either humans or animals. That symbol is the golden scales, representing balance.

The beautiful painting above is by Vermeer. It is titled "Woman Holding a Balance" and is part of the Widener Collection in National Gallery of Art in Washington D.C. (Though I might add we were lucky enough to view a Vermeer at the Louvre, just not this one.) A Vermeer expert said regarding this painting," 'Woman with a Balance' provides us not with a warning but with comfort and reassurance; it makes us feel not vanity of life but its preciousness...the woman asserts a quite, imperturbable calm, the quintessence of Vermeer's vision." (Edward A. Snow) Recognizing that I cannot add hours or even mere minutes to my hurried days, what I am hoping to accomplish with *30 Days of Balance* is the opportunity to savor, enjoy, or pursue something perhaps just a bit more each day. My hope is that after these 30 days I can look back at this little journey of mine and see diverse moments of joy and growth in day to day balance. I plan to share it in photographs to further my commitment and perhaps inspire along the way.


datestampUSEThursday, September 18, 2008

Never Fail Refrigerator Roll

As a former roll failure, I was so excited to find a recipe that clearly states in the title "Never Fail."  I'm especially appreciative of the specific instructions, "Melt together, don't scorch." (So that's what's been holding me back all these years.) Thanks to my good friend Jenny for passing this one along way back when she brought me dinner after I'd had Josie.  Ladies and Gentleman, its a keeper.

Never Fail Refrigerator Roll

1c. milk
1/2 c. butter
1/2 c. sugar

Melt together, don't scorch.  Set aside to cool.

1 scant T. yeast
1/4 c. warm water
Dissolve yeast in warm water. (Add just a bit of sugar to aid in dissolving the yeast.)

2 t. sugar
3 eggs, beaten
4 c. flour
1 1/2 t. salt

Combine eggs and sugar and beat with a fork.  Add the milk mixture and yeast and blend with a fork.  Add the flour and salt and stir with a fork. (Or just do it all with your kitchen aid- that's what I did - amr) Put in fridge overnight, covered tightly.

Two hours before you want to serve the rolls, roll the dough into a circle on a floured surface.  Your dough will be sticky, so use enough flour.  Spread with softened or melted butter.  Cut into pie shaped wedges (24) and roll up like a croissant.  Let rise 2 hours at room temperature.
Bake at 350 for 12 minutes.


datestampUSEWednesday, September 17, 2008

Eye Candy

I found this store in London (Or Paris; its all such a blur now).  It was a total feast for the eyes -Mens, Womens, Childrens, and Accessories.  I didn't buy anything :(  but I am adding it to the long list of stores I'd like to revisit when the dollar isn't as weak.  Go ahead and feast for yourself at their website.


datestampUSETuesday, September 16, 2008


I'm dipping my toe in the boutique market for the first time this week with my patch applique onesies and t-shirts.  It's been time consuming but fun (bonus: putting my degree in marketing to work is always excellent exericise for the brain as well.)  I've blogged about these little lovelies before here.  Wish me luck!


datestampUSEMonday, September 15, 2008

The Pre-Season

My friends and I are beginning to get ridiculously giddy over the upcoming holiday. Each one keeps trying to out-justify the other for a perfectly logical reason to begin the haunt.To satisfy my cravings for the spooky season, I've been enjoying this website.


datestampUSEFriday, September 12, 2008

Current Crush

In the Roberts' household, crepes are the new tortillas. You can put anything in them, roll (or fold) them up, and wa la - dinner! (or dessert!) Oh they are so versatile! They can be sweet or savory and my own mother would be so impressed that somehow I can pull off leftovers without many complaints. Here is the recipe I've been using. Merci beaucoup Paris.


datestampUSEWednesday, September 10, 2008

Max's First Day of Preschool

The day after we got back from Europe, Max had his first day of preschool - complete with the new "spikes" haircut and a shiner the size of a large egg. (You'll have to ask Grandma for the complete details on that one:) He is beyond excited each day to go to preschool and his favorite part is singing team. I am totally serious - this boy can rock it out.  We're looking forward to a great year.


datestampUSETuesday, September 9, 2008

Paris Pictures

Here are just a few more shots to share.

Collage One:
1.I love this picture of Bryce near the door of the de Saint Merri chapel. It was so exciting to see this big red burst of color among all the stone chapels and structures in Paris. I could have taken hundreds of pictures of that beautiful red door. 2.The stone head was found in the Luxembourg gardens. 3.All the market stands and charming little boulangeries along the narrow streets are exactly what made Paris look like what I dreamed it looked like. 4.This Eiffel Tower picture was taken from some steps near Sacre Coeur.

Collage Two:
1.A great piece of art we found in the Louvre by Carracci. I knew the kids would love the pickle nose. 2.Banana Nutella crepes - say no more. 3.Our local bible 4.Taking it all in.


datestampUSESunday, September 7, 2008

No Longer just Dave's Party

Of course, in London we had to stop at a local resto to get a kebab just so Bryce could sing to me:

"I can't believe that I am sharing a kebab with the most beautiful girl I have ever seen with a kebab."

We're such geeks - that provided us hours of comic relief.


datestampUSESaturday, September 6, 2008

A trip to the Theater

Thanks to our friends Matt and Jenny for suggesting "Woman in Black". It was spooky, eerie, and unpredictable. My skin was crawling a number of times. And although I was leaning toward Wicked (again:) I'm so glad we had the chance to see this London-only production.


European Yearnings

We're home, hooray! Never have my kids looked so sweet and been so huggable and grown so much in so little time. (Infinite thanks to my dear mother for manning the fort.) One day has passed and my sweet little Josie is still having a hard time letting me walk out of a room without telling me how unhappy she is about it; and although jet lag is still rocking my world (I've been up since 3 a.m.) oh it was all so worth it. We had a simply glorious time. History, art, beauty, humor and romance infused into each day - we had one adventure after another. Something fabulous was tasted, seen or appreciated, and right around the corner a new delight was waiting to be experienced. One morning I found myself sitting at a cafe on the corner of Portobello road sipping a hot chocolate and reading my book. I paused and thought "perfection." Life as usual has such a hectic pace and it isn't very often I allow myself to take it all in and really appreciate the moment and yet I was blessed to have many of these moments on our European getaway. I think this is primarily due to the wonderfully simple advice we were given to not over plan. Wonderful, wonderful advice that I would definitely pass on. Some of our best days dictated themselves and led us on unforgettable self-guided tours. I'm excited to share some favorites - pictures, places, and experiences and allow myself to enjoy them all over again. Cheers!


1. classic UK scene in Trafalgar Square
2. couldn't pass up this tourist temptation
3. gorgeous building near Westminster Abbey - being a mom of 3 little girls, I often see things through a fairy tale lens and I couldn't help but think how fabulous Rapunzel would fit in this scene

datestampUSEFriday, September 5, 2008

So close...

almost home...this is B and I's pathetic attempt to cover those insanely blood shot and tired eyes from 20+ hours of travel. We were going for the "rock star" look...somehow we both know it's not working.