The Magic of Motherhood by Ashlee Gadd.

Written by the contributors of the popular blog, Coffee + Crumbs, this book is a beautiful collection of essays on Motherhood that will have you laughing one minute, then crying the next.

Reading through it, story by story, I felt myself feeling lighter and freer, as I realized I'm not the only one who has [far too many] days she wishes she could redo, who day-dreams of what life might look like if her world wouldn't revolve around toddlers, who can't wait for nap time and the peace and quiet it brings only to find that when they're sleeping she misses the noise.

It was as if I was having coffee with a friend, and during the conversation kept whispering, Really? You too? No longer feeling isolated or alone with the many emotions raising Littles can bring.

I've been a long time reader of the blog, and ever since I found out about the book, I've been eagerly awaiting its release.

It did not disappoint. This is a book I know I'll skim through again, and one that I think I will gift to every new mother I know.

I'm planning to pass my copy on to a few friend to borrow who I think will enjoy it as much as I did.


My new mop.
Over the winter we replaced the flooring in our house from carpet to laminate. Before the only sections of floor I needed to wash were the kitchen, entryway and bathroom. It wasn't a big deal to get down on my hands and knees and scrub them until they shined. But going over my entire house weekly on my hands and knees... I did that all of two times and decided it was not worth it.  Ideally I would have loved to purchase a Norwex mop. I use to clean for someone who had one, and the quality of theirs was superb, but the price! I couldn't quite justify that.
Enter e-cloth; it's very similar to Norwex, though without the silver woven through it, which is what makes Norwex stand apart. The price point was more within my range, so I purchased it. And I love it. I think the only thing that would make it more lovely is if it were self-powered instead of Sarah-powered. (Is it ironic that I clean homes for other people but at times wish I could have someone come in and clean my home so I wouldn't have to?)

Carol's Daughter Hair Milk
Over Memorial Day weekend we went to Lancaster, PA, to visit family. My week was fairly busy, and even though I thought I was on top of packing everything, I wasn't. I completely forgot all my hair products save a comb. I figured I could manage without them, I would simply wear my hair in a ponytail all weekend. Herm didn't agree. So off we went to WalMart in search of something to manage my mess of tress. I typically use Deva products for my curls, but since WalMart doesn't carry that, I picked Carol's Daughters Hair Milk out of the very limit selection of curl friendly creams and gels, and hoped for the best. So far I really like it. It detangles my hair, which means I don't feel the need to run a comb through it after washing, and seems to give my hair softer, shinier curls. I do use a gel along with the cream for better hold.
It's been almost a year since I decided to fully embrace the fullness of my curly and often frizzy hair. It was a bit of a learning curve but I think was completely worth it. Seeing products, like Carol's Daughter, become more mainstream is exciting to me.  I plan to try more of this line after I finish off my current supply of Deva things.

•Kate's Instagram Challenge
My sister is currently in the midst of a 100 Days of Illustrated Journal challenge. Her feed is looking fabulous, and every day I check it multiple times to see if she's posted. You might enjoy following along too...


Do you remember this post where all I could seem to talk about what that living room makeover I was dreaming up in my head? Guess what?! Instead of just being in my head, it's currently in progress! You might remember that I mentioned wanting a large area rug (check), a leather couch (check), and white walls (to be checked).

Can I tell you a little story about dreaming and persistence followed by prayer?

I love quality things, and often that comes with a high price tag. In addition to that, I am not a spender. Wants quality but hates to spend; that doesn't always works so well. In this case, however, it did.

After spending hours and hours on Craiglist and Facebook Market place, I thought I had finally found a couch. It was leather, and from Article, the company whose couches I was most drawn to. I messaged the Facebook seller, and after conversing for a bit, made an offer. Instead of counter offering, he came back with a few names, calling me cold and heartless. That couch was a sentimental piece he wasn't ready to part with, and I wasn't willing to pay the asking price. No deal.

I was feeling discouraged about the search and prayed. Prayer is always worth a shot, no?

Several days after I prayed, the kids and I went yard sale-ing. Herm dropped us off in a town that was having it's bi-annual community sale, while he went to meet with clients for two hours. One of the very first sales that I went to had a huge area rug. It was rolled up tight, so I couldn't see the entire rug, but I could tell it was very well made. I began asking a few questions about it --it was wool, and in great condition, the owners were ready for a change-- and asked for a price. Hesitantly, a lady working the sale suggested $60, acting as if that was perhaps a bit much. (I later found out from her husband it cost well over $2,000 new... they hadn't communicated well what the selling price would be) I knew I wanted it but couldn't take it at that moment because I was without a vehicle. I told them not to worry about holding it, but if it was still there when I came back I would buy it. Two hours later it was still there, being admired by a growing line of potential buyers... but as soon as I walked up the owner said, "Here she is, I've been holding it for her". As we loaded it into the truck he mentioned that I got a really good deal, I already knew that, it could have been sold for more than triple what I paid. 

A few weeks later I notice the same couch on Craiglist but for almost $500 less that what Mr. Sentimental was selling his couch for. I sent another email, fully expecting it to be an awkward haven't-we-talked-before moment... but it wasn't, and this seller was a bit more professional. 

My brother-in-law drove over an hour, one way, to pick it up for me, since I found it on the Philadelphia Craigslist. (I married into a pretty cool group of people.) And a few weeks later, over Memorial Day weekend, we were able to pick it up and finally bring it home.

The living room now needs a coat or two of white paint (and a fiddle leaf fig tree), to feel almost complete. This winter Herm might build a TV cabinet/bookshelf too... but until then, it, slowly but surely, is feeling more and more like I imagined it would.


I would feel a bit more motivated with my 25 Before 26 list this year. I've got a lot of catch up work to do if I am planning to come even close to accomplishing it. I managed to learn a headstand, but haven't blogged about that. That's about the only thing I've managed in quite a while from that silly list.

Thinking About:

Signing up for a subscription to PrepDish, an online meal planning service, or learning to batch cook.

When we went to Quebec this past winter we took most of our own food. I spent several hours preparing all of the meals we were planning to eat in while we were on vacation. Once we were there the work to finish the meals was so simple. We ate healthy and it felt good to still be able to truly vacation, and not spend hours cooking.

It seems like more often that not I don't have a plan, and that makes cooking no fun. (Not that I exactly love it to begin with.) I have been writing down meals I make each day to come up with a list of ideas to go to when I really don't feel inspired. But the idea of batch prep, that does sound appealing to me. I don't know that I would do it a week at a time though, perhaps every four to five days, to keep the food more fresh tasting.

If this is something you already do, do you have any tips you'd be willing to share?

Listening To:

How I Built This by NPR. Ever since I discovered this podcast I've been binge listening to it. Guy Raz interviews well know business men and women about how their companies were started and became successful. I find it very interesting and inspiring.

The other day I listened to the show about Chesapeake Bay Candles. I bet you can't guess what brand of candle I snatched up today while shopping at TJ Maxx. Yeah, you got me. The founder, Mei Xu, basically feels like an old friend now that I heard her story, and of course I want to support old friends through my purchases (at TJ Maxx).


  1. I just can't leave your page without commenting today:-P Thanks for the podcast rec and please teach me your Craigslisting ways! -Kayla