| fifty-two // fifty-two |


Because we actually made it a full year with so many pictures along the way. I wanted to put together a little snippet of my favorite, but let’s be serious a parent can’t do that. Even with the blog I still find it hard to delete a photo of her. 

This is from our time at the Zoo yesterday. We wanted to go pay our respects to Colo, as many may know she recently passed away at the age of 60. I grew up with this gorilla, it may sounds strange, but she was always a big attraction. She was the first gorilla born in captivity and lived the be the oldest on record, such a bad ass lady! There was so much research because of her, and the Columbus Zoo really was built around the fame they received from Colo. We left a not on her memorial banner, said our favorite memories of visiting her and went to visit the new manitees.

This girl is totally are child as she is obsessed with the Zoo. We spent half and hour watching the new rescue manitees swim around, eat “salad” and pose for pictures. This visit she really focused on a few of her favorite animals, and was focused on studying what they were doing in their environments. She is definitely a voyeur. 

I have learned a lot from documenting our little lady for 52 weeks. It’s amazing how in the last 14 weeks she has developed so much into an articulate toddler. Babyhood is quickly in the rear view mirror and toddlerdom is here! I am thinking of starting a new series, but with the shop, her and work, we will see!

2017 goals…continue to enjoy every minute!

// oddest obsession //

Harper has a new obsession with pink clothing. I know you are probably thinking, ‘yes like most girls,’ but this has a twist. Harper has slept with a pink hooded sweatshirt the last three nights. One night I took it off her for washing and about 45 minutes of tears and a repetitive “my pink jacket!” ensued. 

Not sure if this is a norm I am missing but I want to be sure to remember this for embarrassing moments in her teenage years.

// funny behavior //

Harper has learned a joke, from me so it’s not mature by any means. Ready for it? Okay…

Quests what? Chicken butt!!

I guarantee if you meet my daughter and repeat this you will receive about 10 minutes of giggles!

| fifty-one // fifty-two |


Because today we marched. We are unable to make it to Washington for the big Women’s March but we’re thrilled to make it to the sister march in Columbus today! Harper fought a nasty fever all week and I really debated going, but the dread of not participating, not taking action hung over my head. Fortunately the fever broke, my mom decided to come and we made a family day of it!

There is so much to march for, and I am slightly embarrassed to say how many times I nearly broke down in tears. I marched for the strong women who helped raise me; my grandmother, my mother, my aunts, and wanted to set example for the future; my daughter and niece. I don’t want my daughter to grow up feeling like being a woman set limitations, I want her to be able to choose what happens with HER body, and most importantly I want her to feel valued by a society who sees her as equal.

There is so much to fear with the upcoming inauguration, but today I saw hope. I saw why sitting idly by is not an option. I saw husbands supporting wives and daughters, past politicians standing for what is right even if they aren’t looking for a photo opt, and I saw that even though Ohio has passed some oppressive legislation there are still so many who see a woman’s body and mind as her own!

This all slams into the fact that this blog was started just over 1 year ago. It’s still small, there is still more to accomplish, but like Judy Hopps “I don’t know when to quite!” (So much Zootopia this week!)

// favorite movie //

Sorry Frozen, another strong female lead took your place at the throne, Zootopia is queen! I think I maxed out at 6 showings in one day…work can not come soon enough!

// proudest moment //

Today Harper cheered, she clapped and she chanted. I hope she grows to be a strong independent woman like her grandmother, and grandma’s mommy. Who showed her, and me, you can be mothers, wives and work like a boss!

| forty-seven // fifty-two |


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Because today was Daddy’s birthday and we made sure to celebrate his 39th turn ’round the sun in style. The main reason we moved to Ohio was for the better of our family, we rarely had days off together and never had any time just as a couple. It was one of those adult decisions you make when you realize your happiness means a whole hell of a lot. Today was a day I felt damn proud we made that choice!

We started off with French Toast and lots of coffee, his favorite, then bundled up to explore our first Ohio snowfall. Harper was really unsure of the snow getting on her boot, but was stoked it looked like Frozen outside. Our little bean has been fighting that daycare cold so we filled our Sunday with every bit of Holiday merriment we could find in Franklinton. We explored some artists lofts, hit a pretty rad femme powered market and listened to some great life music, and ended with a course of Daddy’s favorite meal. Now we are cuddled watching The Big Sleep while I sip some wine and recap our day.

We love exposing Harper to what we love and I am happy we don’t get intimated by bringing her along. Harper sat right in front of the stage to better dance to, devoured a cookie while daddy did some shopping and then passed out from all the excitement.

All-in-all a great day with a great little family! Go out and explore, expose you and your family to new adventures. Experiences are the best memories!

| favorite activity |

After bath time our favorite thing is to wear a hooded towel and sing the imperial march from Star Wars while watching ourself in the mirror. Everynight, we call it Darth Vader towel. It’s adorable to see Darth Vader dresses as a unicorn and smiling.

| new demands |

Anyone else have a demanding 2 year old who does things like “mommy drink water on stool!” It’s wild the odd things that need to happen for her to feel calm. We can’t decide if she is OCD or just likes to boss us around as payback…

| forty-six // fifty-two |


Because today we took the coldest walk on our favorite trail. With the weather zig and zagging all over the place we can’t seem to gauge how to leave the house, so we ended up bundling up our little bean shortly after we snap a few photos…to the point she complained of how worth it was! It has been the longest week, I feel like six months has passed since last Sunday so we made a point to take it very easy.

This holiday season is proving itself to be a tough season for our family so we have been trying to make the most of each day we have with each other. Saturday we had a rare, but much needed date night at one of my favorite restaurants that closing in a few weeks. It was so great to get to date my husband again, and remember why it was so important to focus on each day!


// newest obsession //

Book bags! Mine, hers, yours?! Really she just needed one. We picked her up a little pink pack to use for school, her snacks, and really just to keep her from stealing mine. Haha!

// wierdest phrase //

“Nice to meet you,” followed by an awkward handshake and Harper introducing herself as “snake,” which has Dan and I little confused. So far this weekend she has been Snake, Natalie, Harper James, Mommy’s Baby and Her. I really can’t with her sometimes… 

| forty-five // fifty-two |

Because she has become a ham that has an extreme bought of shyness when in front of others. Her opinion has become stronger, but she knows when to back down. She loves to makes us laugh and will repeat an action if she knows it’s gold. 

Today we couldn’t decide how to spend our day, but when we saw that the museum was free today we knew what we were doing. This weekend after Thanksgiving was all about Holiday hoopla and after a day spent raising the tree, singing carols and seeing the Zoo Wildlights we needed a normal day. 

Daddy taught Harper new names like Stella and Rauschenberg, and we marveled in her behavior while at the museum. We stayed mostly in the newly built contemporary wing, drooling over each piece. In Philadelphia the art museum had been my happy place, and o was excited to share this space with Harper. We also took a few minutes to walk my old college campus, feeling like a lifetime ago!

| forty-four // fifty-two |


Because she is getting so big and I am cherishing every cuddle this one allows…even if they are passed out walks from car to bedroom. I missed a post last week because well that is life. Last week I was fighting another bug, what many new daycare moms assure me will be another drop in an ocean. 

This week Harper has been obsessed with “helping” which is really just a way to make each task last a few moments longer. Currently her favorite is folding laundry, feeding the dog, picking up her room, and putting items into the trash. I am glad she is wanting to do what she can around the house, but some tasks must wait till after bed time. 

We went to a friend’s last night, seeing many people I hadn’t seen in years and who had never interacted with Harper. I was amazed by what a well behaved little toddler I seemed to have acquired!

// favorite toy //

Baby Elsa, there are two, who have recently been outfitted in some very 80’s colorful gear. Moving back to the Midwest and staying with the parents means seeing many of my toys making a comeback. There is even a Polly Pocket floating around!

// Mom’s new focus //

We are working on “please” and “thank you” when Harper gives us her demands. “Mommy stand over here,” which I reply “say please?” I know this will be a lifelong struggle but for now trying to avoid a little tyrant who is demanding her mom stand on a rug while she eats cheerios.

| forty-two // fifty-two |


We had a perfect Fall Saturday with nothing on our agenda, a rarity in these parts. We decided it was a great time to get some new shots for the Etsy shop, father enough leaves for a good jumping pile and then clean out all the beautiful earth from our hair and explore the local Gallery Hop.

Last week brought with it a tidal waves of hormones (seriously do they ever balance out?!) and emotions baring down from the move. The toughest part of marriage is having to realize you may not always see eye-to-eye and that there is not a quick solution. This move was a big one for my husband and while I am thrilled he finally broke the ties of his old city he is definitely a stranger to change. This weekend brought some hope and honesty about how this change was for our family unit and wasn’t going to be an easy one. We are moving forward which is great and focusing on our happy daughter so she can have that childhood we always talked about.

Being outside much much more has been the best part of our move. Having a yard to run in, paths through parks that lead to beautiful patios for long weekend lunches. Overall it was a great weekend with our family.

// newest obsession //

Princesses are all the rage. Today Princess Leia was requested when putting in the morning pigtails for our mullet daughter. She barely has any hair so there was a challenge but I was happy that if we are going to wear a Princess Anna cape we have some Star Wars in there as a balance!

// oh you time change…//

I always remembered time changes being great in the Fall, remember being excited then at would be opened another hour? Now with a child I curse this outdated tradition that takes my child long perfected schedule and hits it with a sledge hammer! 

Harper got up at 6 am after going down around 11:30pm, which left me up till 2pm. Today felt like a blur, and now at 9:20 I feel like it’s midnight and I can barely stand it. Finger crossed this week goes smoothly!

| thirty-nine & forty // fifty-two |

When you realize that you were a total mom brain and forgot to post the previous week’s portrait you post two weeks like “who cares

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This week we had grand plans, a full dance card really, yet Friday around 4pm we got a call from Harper’s daycare that she had a fever of 100.2. I picked her up and we got this little one cuddled for a night of movies and TLC. Sadly she woke up Saturday feeling like the surface of the sun and had to make a quick trip to urgent care. It was up to 102.5 despite the morning dose of baby Tylenol and she had strep throat, or toncilitis, the doctor felt Harper felt worse enough without shoving a swab down her throat!

I felt like we fought the good fight getting her fever to break, as I write this we just dipped below 100 but still too warm for comfort. We stayed locked up in the playroom watching Frozen and Star Wars over and over again. The family took a 3 hour nap and we are the better for it!

today we celebrated the break by putting on normal clothes, getting yummy smoothies and bouncing around the house. Hoping tomorrow brings a clean bill of health for my baby.

// newest obsession //

Star Wars. Sadly she is on the dark-side and walks around doing Darth Vader impressions while singing the song of the Empire.

// worst new habit //

Screaming, for no reason other than pure joy. It’s my favorite in the checkout line at Whole Foods or while driving home. Anyone know ways to break this terribly terrifying habit?!

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Two weekends ago we headed to the most beautiful nursery, hit up a local brewery that had a Fall petting zoo, and wandered around Italian Village which has quickly become on of our favorite ‘hoods.

The family costume wasn’t, and still isn’t really, ready for it debuet so we got Harper a Day of the Dead headband and called it a day! While out she made friends with an eager puppy, mommy bought some new plant babies and daddy got another dose of warm apple cider. It was one of those perfect Fall days.

 

 

 

| thirty-eight // fifty-two |


Today felt truly Fall so we decided it was the perfect day to hit up the farm to do some picking, drink some cider (man a decision I regret as it does not farewell for the toddler diaper), and have some positivity before tonight’s debate. 

We started off searching for the perfect pumpkin but left with five! Harper was not in love with walking over vines. After seeing an enticing menu filled with kettle corn, cider, funnel cakes and more, we decided it was lunch time! Harper devoured half of Dad’s funnel cake, chugged some cider and then hugged a bag of kettle corn like it was going to float away. 

We ended with a little apple picking so we could come home and bake. Out baby cousin ended up at our house so we scratched that so we could go for a long walk and watch Frozen…priorities. Another great day, and another day that I am thankful for my family.

It amazing how becoming a parent can change your idea of a rocking weekend.

// grossest moment //

You can’t be a parent and admit you never talk about poop. My husband and I have talked about how becoming a parent means talking about someone else’s poop more than you could ever imagine. This week we had three occasions that ended with loads of laundry, emergency showers and hysterical conversations with Harper about pooping and how to tell mommy when she needs to go. 

Potty training may be the death of me…

// best moment //

Last night we had my brother-in-law’s dirty thirty party and headed over for a great bonfire. Harper was amazing, loved seeing the moon (her new new favorite) and seeing some friends and family. On a side note whenHarper is tired she get very lovey-dovey, last night was no exception. 

At one point in the night my little gem leaned in and kissed me, said “thank you mommy,” and then followed up with an Eskimo kiss for the ages. 
I am amazed by her everyday and am proud to be her mother. I hope she remains strong-willed and confident throughout her life. Being a woman can be a tough job, but she is up for the job.

| thirty-seven // fifty-two |

The theme of the past few weeks seem to follow a similar trend of “oh my gosh who is this toddler and what have you done with my seeet baby?!” This week proves that this little cycle can happen all in one day! 

After a long week of work and rain I could wait to get the little one out for some family time, especially after the last two weekends being a bit of a whirlwind…don’t worry this weekend was just as nuts. Saturday’s plans fell through due to some clashing of the parental minds on what makes a fun Saturday so we decided (together) Sunday would be funday. The Columbus Flea was happening so we decided to hit that up early so we could be home to play with Auntie and the new baby. 

The flea was a dream, a dream filled with leather goods I had to pass because we really want a house, needs I didn’t drink because it wasn’t noon and yummy popsicles that Harper and I devoured! We even picked some sunflowers and went exploring through Italian Village. You are probably thinking what a picture perfect day…it was!

We got home to a pot of yummy soup, stacks of cookies and the cutest tooting baby this side of the Mississippi. I even got Harper to hold the baby, read to her and we even laid for a nap. Guys this all happens by 5pm, I think I high-fives my reflection for winning the whole mom thing. Then she woke…

25 minutes of piercing shrieks, a few smacks at my head, buckets of tears and a confused mommy with no idea how to calm my baby. Daddy was able to do the trick and I left defeated and shell shocked to head to the grocery to make an offering for the beast known as Harper.

It’s amazing how you can go from feeling like a winner to feeling like the mold under the bath mat. Joys of parenting!

// big steps //

Harper starts day-care tomorrow! Eek! And the behavior from the past few weeks has left me both relieved and nervous! I think the structure and social aspect will be great. I truly think it’s what she craves, but part of me wonders what it will do to her when she gets into her moods. Time will tell…

// bad baby //

Hitting, it’s started. Like biting it is geared all towards me. Ugh. Tips encouraged…and wine…