All posts by Elizabeth

A Season of Gratitude: Week 2 + Gratitude Favorites

You can read a bit about my commitment to staying grounded in gratitude this holiday season and download your free (#printable #dopeoplestillhaveprinters #IDK) gratitude list here.  Feel free to share your own gratitude lists with me (#gratitudeOTFT @elizabethev) and the rest of our crew.

A SEASON OF GRATITUDE: WEEK 2

a season of gratitude week 2

  • Wednesday, November 8: I am grateful for Grace’s preschool teachers.  They are so kind and compassionate, and I know she is safe and happy under their care.  For someone who worries about everything (and then some), this means the world.  
  • Thursday, November 9: I am grateful for opportunities to connect with fellow bloggers/Instagrammers (slash-real-people) and brands I love.  Tonight’s holiday event with Whole Foods Market felt extra warm and encouraging.
  • Friday, November 10: I am grateful for our escape hatch Cape house. (It really does feel like an escape hatch, though.  And a cozy one, at that.  There’s just something about crossing the bridge that does it for me.)
  • Saturday, November 11: I am grateful for my sweet, silly, darling niece who turns 2 today and can play a mean (toy) electric guitar.
  • Sunday, November 12: I am grateful (and sort of terrified) to have two babes and zero cribs.  In less than a month, both our kids have made the move to beds (or “big girl beds” as Nicky calls them…).  They are growing and changing and learning… on their own schedules… just like they’re supposed to do.  It’s amazing and wild.
  • Monday, November 13: I am grateful for $5.99 craft/activity sets from CVS. 
  • Tuesday, November 14: I am grateful for the two women who gave me a manicure/pedicure this morning.  It was quiet at the nail salon, so they offered to save me 30 minutes and do both at once.  I felt extra cared for… and likely wasted that extra 30 minutes, but hey.

And a few gratitude favorites for the week:

And I’m currently super grateful for the microwave that has reheated the same cup of tea twice this afternoon…

Also On Tap for Today:

  • Timely for those hosting this holiday season: 6 Things Everyone Forgets to Tell Their Houseguests from Apartment Therapy
  • Not sure if this helpful/weird/both, but I added a SHOP ON TAP page for those looking for gift (or everyday purchase) ideas + recommendations
  • Digging out all our cold weather gear (and hoping it fits…)

What are you feeling grateful for today?

This week’s meal + workout plan | Week of November 20

If you’re short on time, my meal plan for the week can be summed up in two words: mashed potatoes.  But hopefully you’ve got a few minutes to stick around, because in addition to some meal + workout ideas, I’ve got a very cool mindfulness challenge from Coolidge Corner Yoga to share with you this week.

Back to the mashed potatoes.

meal and workout plan november 20

(These are not mashed potatoes.)

MEAL + WORKOUT PLAN | WEEK OF NOVEMBER 20

MEALS

WORKOUTS

  • Monday: Mama Beasts (hoping to get there in time from gymnastics… I don’t want to miss this year’s can workout/food drive)
  • Tuesday: Yoga 
  • Wednesday: Mama Beasts
  • Thursday: Row/basement workout of some sort
  • Friday: Walk at the Cape with the family
  • Saturday: Yoga
  • Sunday: Run (and/or family walk in the woods)

#OMFORTHEHOLIDAYS

I’m really excited to join Coolidge Corner Yoga (and their sister studio in the South End, Sadhana Yoga) for their #OMfortheholidays six week mindfulness challenge.  The challenge begins this week (Monday, November 20) and runs through New Year’s Eve.  All are welcome (and encouraged!) to participate, both in studio or at home.  The goal of this inclusive challenge is to make room for mindfulness, movement, and focusing on what matters most this holiday season. Coolidge Corner Yoga will provide weekly inspiration for self-care and mindfulness, as well as a chance to win prizes from their challenge partners.  I am really looking forward to continuing my daily meditation practice (going on 50 consecutive days, baby!), carving out more mindful + focused time with my children, and treating my body kindly.

How to get involved in #OMfortheholidays:

  • Join the Coolidge Corner Yoga newsletter or follow their BLOG
  • Follow @CoolidgeYoga on Facebook and Instagram
  • Make mindfulness part of your weekly routine, either in the studio or at home
  • Post it: Every week share your mindfulness practice on social media using the hashtags #coolidgeyoga #omfortheholidays, and tag @CoolidgeYoga (Make sure you use all three tags each week to be eligible to win prizes!)
  • Check in every Monday on the CCY website or on social media for your mindfulness inspiration for the week ahead

[Disclosure: I received a class pass in exchange for sharing about this challenge.  I truly hope many of you will join me in participating!]

LAST MINUTE THANKSGIVING FINDS:

Also On Tap for Today:

Who’s with me for #OMfortheholidays?  And what’s on your Thanksgiving menu?

A Season of Gratitude: Week 1 + Gratitude Favorites

You can read a bit about my commitment to staying grounded in gratitude this holiday season and download your free (#printable #dopeoplestillhaveprinters #IDK) gratitude list here.  Feel free to share your own gratitude lists with me (#gratitudeOTFT @elizabethev) and the rest of our crew.

A SEASON OF GRATITUDE: WEEK 1

season of gratitude week 1

  • Wednesday, November 1: I am grateful for the chance to paint for a few hours once the babes are asleep.
  • Thursday, November 2:  I’m grateful for an interview I heard with David Ridgen from CBC Canada because there was a tiny aside where he said he prefers to call pets “friends.”  This made me smile (even though I’m prejudiced against cats).  
  • Friday, November 3: I am grateful for my husband.  This is true every day, but this is our 5th wedding anniversary, and so his thoughtfulness, generosity, ingenuity and enthusiasm for life are especially on my mind today.
  • Saturday, November 4: I am grateful for Grace’s compassionate spirit.  At nearly 4 (whyyyyyyy), she is becoming more and more aware of the world around us and it is both amazing and heartbreaking.  The other day she asked me why there were people in our neighborhood who hold up “signs made of cardboard by the streets.”  We’ve been talking a lot lately about how fortunate we are, and also how we can be of service to others (her school does a tremendous job with this too, involving their preschoolers in monthly projects).  This is turning into a novel, but today Grace and I went for a walk on the beach.  There was an older woman sitting on the bench near the parking lot, a cane resting at her side.  Normally I’m the first to yell stranger danger, but I watched with such a full heart as Grace climbed up on the bench next to her and told her all about her morning.  It was an unexpected gift.
  • Sunday, November 5:  I’m grateful for an extra hour of sleep.  JK.  Daylight Savings is a legit joke when little people run your household.  I am, however, grateful for a relaxing weekend on the Cape with our family.
  • Monday, November 6: I am grateful for the Motown Party playlist on Spotify.
  • Tuesday, November 7: I am grateful for the right to vote, and I am grateful that so many good people were elected today.

This first week has proven to be a really helpful exercise for me.  I find myself paying better attention to both the big things and the little things.  

And a few gratitude favorites for the week:

Oh… and I’m also grateful for those rose gold TOMS I found for 50% off at TJ Maxx.  I mean…

Also On Tap for Today:

  • Checking out the Connect Boston event with Verizon in the Seaport 
  • Speaking of David Ridgen, the entire third season of his Someone Knows Something podcast was released today– I highly recommend it!
  • Fully embracing cranberry season

What’s on your gratitude list this week?

A Season of Gratitude | and sheep costumes

We spent the last few days chasing around two very cute sheep.  This was the first holiday as a family of four that we’ve really been able to get out there (without a stroller) and do the things that people do on Halloween (I guess… it’s never been my jam). 

a season of gratitude

I picked up matching sheep costumes for Grace + Nick on a whim, and it was probably the best Target money I’ve ever spent.  Which is saying something.  They took to them instantly, crawling around our condo for hours (as Grace pointed out, “sheeps use all of their legs for walking”).  They made their public debut at the Cape this weekend, where we hit up the annual Green Halloween at the Cape Cod Museum of Natural History.  The museum was open (and admission was super discounted — $5 for kids, free for accompanying adults) and full of fun Halloween activities and surprises. 

a season of gratitude

On Sunday, we took my aunt Mary’s suggestion and brought our sheep to CJ’s Horse Ranch in West Barnstable for their Halloween Fun Day.  You haven’t lived until you’ve seen a pair of sheep ride ponies.  After a tractor tour and the pony rides, Grace and Nick got to meet and trick-or-treat with the horses. 

a season of gratitude

a season of gratitude

a season of gratitude

Everyone was so kind and generous, and our kids had so much fun at both events.  As I scrolled through the 890 photos I took, I kind of couldn’t believe they were real.  The whole weekend was pure magic.

A SEASON OF GRATITUDE

As I lit my soy Christmas tree scented candle this morning (it’s time), I knew I wanted that feeling of the weekend’s magic to last.  I knew I wanted to avoid the overwhelm that often sets in this time of year, as best I can.  I knew I wanted to soak up all that wonder and joy on my kids’ faces.  I knew I wanted to focus on the things that matter… which basically, aren’t things.  And I kept coming back to gratitude.  So I made us a printable chart thing.  Because that’s who I am, for better or worse.  

I’m planning to take a few minutes each night during this holiday season to write about gratitude– who and what I’m grateful for, etc.  And I’d love for you to join me, if you’re interested.  Feel free to use #gratitudeOTFT when sharing on social.  Wouldn’t it be lovely to see what everyone is feeling grateful for?  

a season of gratitude

click to download your free printable gratitude list

I’ll be sharing my list (likely weekly) here and on Instagram stories as well.  (And if it goes well, I promise to make us a new list for December…)

Also On Tap for Today:

Let’s hear it… what are you feeling grateful for today?

Lentil mac and cheese with mushrooms and thyme

If you’re a mac and cheese purist, this post is likely going to make you very sad.  And if I’m being honest, I didn’t really know what to call this dish, but “lentil mac and cheese with mushrooms and thyme” sounded decidedly better than “baked pasta with some lentils, ricotta, parmesan, maybe a pinch of red pepper flakes, you know…”  

lentil mac and cheese

And a bit more honesty: I fully intended to sprinkle this ol’ thing with bread crumbs before putting it in the oven, but I got distracted by a French bulldog running through the kitchen with what appeared to be a pair of my underwear.  Life is rich these days.

When we first moved to Southie, we lived across the street from a now extinct restaurant that had the best seasonal menus.  And we’d know… because we ate there, like, three times a week.  That first fall/winter, there was a baked macaroni with mushrooms on the menu, and it changed my life.  Granted, it was a relatively minor life change (I thought I hated mushrooms, turns out… I didn’t).  Eight years later, I’m daydreaming about that pasta and snacking on leftover ‘shrooms.  Or whatever.

Let’s get down to business.

LENTIL MAC AND CHEESE WITH MUSHROOMS + THYME

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 lb your choice of pasta (roughly half a regular box) – I used rigatoni but I think I might try Banza shells next time, just for the heck of it.
  • 1 c dry lentils (I used this medley from Daily Pantry)
  • 1 tbsp unsalted butter
  • 1 small onion, chopped
  • 2 garlic cloves, chopped
  • Approx. 2 tsp fresh thyme (I used 4-5 sprigs of lemon thyme from our deck garden)
  • 2 c cremini mushrooms (aka baby Portobello), cleaned and sliced
  • Pinch each of salt, pepper, red pepper flakes
  • 1 c shredded parmesan cheese
  • 8 oz ricotta cheese
  • Optional-ish: 1/4 c breadcrumbs, additional thyme for garnish
lentil mac and cheese

…time for some thyme

Instructions:

  1. Position your oven racks to accommodate your dutch oven/casserole pan
  2. Preheat oven to 350 F
  3. Cook lentils per instructions (I usually do 1 part lentils/2 parts water, boil for 2 minutes and simmer for 10) and cook pasta until just al dente
  4. Meanwhile, in a dutch oven or similar pot (this is the one I have, currently on sale for $50), warm butter and sauté onions until translucent 
  5. Add garlic and sauté for another minute or two
  6. Add salt, pepper and red pepper flakes, along with mushrooms and thyme
  7. Sauté mushrooms for 10-15 minutes, stirring often
  8. Once cooked, add lentils and pasta to the mushroom mix, and combine
  9. Add shredded parmesan and gently fold in ricotta cheese, a teaspoon at a time (placing it, rather than mixing it in)
  10. Top with breadcrumbs, if desired (and you’re not distracted)
  11. Bake for 20 minutes
  12. Allow to cool for several minutes before serving

Notes: It tastes better than it looks… you’ll need to trust me on this one.  Lentils do not photograph well… You can easily adapt this recipe for those with gluten allergies, by using gluten free pasta and breadcrumbs (both readily available these days).  I know less than zero about vegan cheeses (I believe Kite Hill makes an almond milk ricotta?), but I dare say this pasta with lentils could hold its own without the parmesan and ricotta.  

lentil mac and cheese

This makes for a hearty vegetarian dinner and would be perfect for sharing during football games or over the holidays.  And I can attest to the leftovers being just as good as the first serving.

Okay.  Back to daydreaming and mushrooms laundry and getting the car inspected I go.

SHOP THIS POST:

Also On Tap for Today:

What’s the one (or two, or nine) really great meal you still find yourself thinking about?

 

This week’s meal + workout plan | October 16th

It’s been 3 months since I published a weekly meal + workout plan.  I assure you, I have been eating meals… and mostly doing workouts, too.  We’ve been back in a semi-normal (read: non-summer) routine for just over a month now, so I figured I’d get back in the habit of sharing my weekly meals + workouts.  Rejoice and be glad.  Or whatever.

WEEKLY MEAL + WORKOUT PLAN | OCTOBER 16th

weekly meal + workout plan

MEALS

Meal prep: Several jars of vegetable broth and miso soup (this week’s body experiment involves fermented foods + broth, so…), chop vegetables for snacks + salads, cook quinoa, make-ahead smoothie packs

WORKOUTS

  • Monday: Yoga
  • Tuesday: Fall 5 Workout (MB) + run
  • Wednesday: Mama Beasts + challenge circuit
  • Thursday: Spin class (or rest)
  • Friday: Mama Beasts
  • Saturday: Captain’s Choice (MB) 
  • Sunday: Run + yoga

Also On Tap for Today:

What’s your plan for the week ahead?

Currently | September 2017

It’s late September and I just took a blissful outdoor shower (one of my favorite things about our Cape house).  I’m telling you that partly so you know I prioritize hygiene, and partly to express what a gorgeous summer day it is in New England… despite it technically being, like, the fourth day of Autumn.  Whatever, man.

CURRENTLY | SEPTEMBER 2017

currently september 2017

Serious question: How to you make your hands look cool and/or normal in photos?

Currently reading

Per usual, I have started 14 new books… and finished 0 of them.  We read so many great children’s books this summer (I need to add to this list), but now that I have a little time to myself while the kids are at preschool, I have loaded up my Kindle with non-picture books.  And it feels good.  Here’s what I’m reading:

Currently listening to

  • A whole slew of great podcasts: Pod Save America, Lovett or Leave it, Call Your Girlfriend, Fake The Nation, Style Your Mind, Fat Mascara and LeVar Burton Reads.
  • The Daily Mix playlists from Spotify (they nail it every time)
  • Grace singing “There’s a Potty in the USA”… because she heard Miley in the car once and now our bathroom has its own anthem.  

Currently watching

  • For out of state license plates… I printed a 50 states license plate worksheet thing (from a website called Mom’s Mini Van… in case my life status was at all in question, that should clarify things) mid-way through August.  So many people vacation on the Cape, I thought it might be fun to keep track of the different license plates we saw.  There are plenty of New Hampshires, New Yorks, New Jerseys, Connecticuts, Vermonts, Pennsylvanias, Floridas, and Maines here.  And a surprising number of Ohios.  I got very into this whole game, like… very quickly.  (Note that most of the summer it was just me and the kids down here… so essentially, I was the only one playing.)  And I’m not saying I purposely took the wrong exit to catch up to and record an interesting looking license plate…. but I’m not saying I didn’t either.  I saw Oklahoma and not only beeped, but frantically waved, and judging by the driver’s look… he was not into it.  And then, on Labor Day, as we made our way back to the city, I saw Alaska on Route 6 and lost what very little chill I had left.  Nick claims he knows someone who up until recently had Hawaii plates.  Likely story.  I started a brand new sheet the day after Labor Day, and I’m not bragging, but I have 40 of the 50 states already logged.  It helps that the entire country moves to Boston every September to go to college.  In their moms’ minivans.  
  • Nick brought his Netflix membership back from the dead so we could watch Ozark (thanks to Tina + Mal for the recommendation).  It’s dark, but not too violent and now I am obsessed with money laundering, so that’s fun.  To clarify: I don’t personally launder money, I’ve just developed a hobby/part-time job being suspicious of people who might.
  • Also on Netflix, Gaga: Five Foot Two.  Liked it a lot.  Love her a lot.

Currently feeling

  • Relieved to be back in a routine.  As fun as this summer was, I definitely appreciate (and need) order.  
  • Itchy, because I saw a spider approaching me 2 hours ago, but I lost track of it… so it’s only safe to assume it’s in my hair, texting its friends to come over.
  • Especially grateful.  We got a flat tire on our way home from Grace’s dentist appointment this morning and I know it’s such a small thing, but I felt myself getting so frustrated.  And embarrassed for being frustrated.  I am so lucky to have who and what I do.    
  • Speaking of embarrassed: Why did I write what amounts to a 10 page, double-spaced essay on license plate hunting?

Also On Tap for Today:

What has been the highlight of your month so far?

 

My favorite gifts for newborns

I received a gift card from Marshalls in exchange for this post.  All opinions are my own.

Did you know September is the month with the most births in the U.S.?  According to The Daily Viz, the days between September 9-20 are the most popular birthdays in the United States over the past twenty years.  It’s statistically probable (something I rarely have confidence saying, but I think we’re good…) one of you is celebrating a birthday or the arrival of a newborn, so congrats! And if you’re celebrating neither, but you like cute stuff… I’ve got you covered too with plenty of my favorite gifts for newborns, new parents and older siblings.

Throughout the month of September, Marshalls is offering an expanded selection of (really!) adorable baby items at incredible prices.  I have zero chill when it comes to baby things, so when I stopped in earlier this week to pick up a few gifts for an upcoming baby shower, I could barely contain myself.  

Whether you’re shopping for your own children, a family or friend, or getting a jump on holiday shopping (please mentor me), September is a great time to hit up Marshalls for baby gifts.

Here are a few of my recent finds (isn’t that the best part of shopping at Marshalls and other TJX stores?) and recommendations.

MY FAVORITE GIFTS FOR NEWBORNS

The staples

my favorite gifts for newborns

You can’t go wrong with bibs, burp cloths and swaddling blankets.  Our children are 3 1/2 and 21 months and we are still using all three in heavy rotation.  

Something soft

my favorite gifts for newborns

Marshalls has the best selection of blankets (many come beautifully packaged and ready for gift-giving).  I picked up two cotton quilts in gender-neutral grey and striped chambray that would be great for keeping a newborn warm in a stroller or car seat, but could also be used later on in a toddler’s crib or bed.

*Gentle reminder: please check out the American Academy of Pediatrics guidelines on safe sleep for babies here.  

Books and educational toys

my favorite gifts for newborns

You can’t go wrong with a good book (and it’s never too early to read to children).  I love this Baby Animals book because it’s interactive (lots of flaps and textures) and the bold graphics are perfect infants.  Marshalls has a great selection of books and educational toys at unbelievable prices.  Most books and toys are labeled for age appropriateness, taking the guesswork out of shopping.  I found a few of my kids’ favorites while I was there– Grace especially loves giving copies of her favorite books to her younger cousins and friends.

Looking for book recommendations? Here are a few of our favorite summer reads.

Something sort of ridiculous but incredibly cute

my favorite gifts for newborns

This two piece knit set had me swooning.  Is it practical?  Probably not.  Most parents register for the things they actually need… so why not include something over the top cute with that box of diapers or crib sheets or onesies?  This set would be perfect for newborn photos or snuggling at home during those first few sleepy weeks.

Unconventional nursery decor

my favorite gifts for newborns

How fun would this light box (a definite #marshallssurprise at less than $10) be in a nursery?  You could use it for monthly photos (something I forgot to do… every single month… for both children), post love notes, or simply write out your child’s name.  In a pinch, it would also make a decent nightlight at 3 AM.  

Don’t forget about mama

my favorite gifts for newborns

Don’t forget about mama!  Marshalls has plenty of small gifts for new mothers, too– and anything you can do to encourage moms to care for themselves will surely be appreciated.  Time for self care feels limited in the early days, so consider keeping things simple.  This rose water hydrating mist would be a lovely addition to any baby gift.  I love the minimalist packaging and super subtle fragrance, and it’s something a mother could use one handed… in the wee hours of the morning…

And something for older siblings

my favorite gifts for newborns

Okay, maybe don’t give a toddler a harmonica, especially when there’s a newborn in the house (says the woman who put a tambourine in Grace’s Christmas stocking just weeks after baby Nick was born… I blame lack of sleep…).  But I know those older siblings appreciate being showered, too!  These infant and “big kid” toys featuring characters from our favorite books would be such a fun gift for a family with more than one child… and soundproof walls.  

Seriously, though.  Skip the harmonica.  I stand by everything else.  Happy Birthday, September babies.

Also On Tap for Today:

What is your favorite gift for newborns, new mamas or older siblings?

Feta, lemon + dill dip | Labor Day Weekend recipes

When I dip, you dip, we dip… our cucumber slices into a big bowl of feta, lemon and dill dip.  Okay?  Okay.

This dip came to be much in the way anything I make does… I surveyed my pantry and fridge, got a little heavy handed with the garlic, threw everything in the blender and hoped for the best.  And I got just nearly that.  I brought some to my nephew’s first birthday party (he preferred cake and I don’t blame him) and will be making another batch for Labor Day Weekend.

FETA, LEMON + DILL DIP

feta lemon dill dip

Vegetarian, gluten free.  Serves a crowd.

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups crumbled feta
  • 2 large garlic cloves, chopped
  • 2 tbsp fresh dill, chopped
  • 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil 
  • juice from 1 lemon
  • zest from 1 lemon (like, the same one you juiced…)
  • 1 tsp red pepper flakes, plus more for garnish
  • 1 cucumber, sliced

Directions:

  1. Set aside half of the lemon zest.
  2. Combine feta, garlic, lemon juice and red pepper flakes in high speed blender, adding olive oil slowly, and blend until smooth.
  3. Put your dip in a bowl and garnish with fresh dill, remaining lemon zest, additional red pepper flakes (and more olive oil, if desired).
  4. Serve with cucumber slices or other veggies or a good, sturdy pita chip.
  5. Enjoy.
  6. Yes, it’s that easy.

I use this crinkle cutter for cutting crudite and kind of love it.  It’s one of those things you don’t know you need (though, honestly, you don’t) until you have one (taking up extra space in your utensil drawer).  

Here are a few more recipes you might enjoy for Labor Day Weekend:

And last, but not least… S’mores on a Stick.  Maybe make those first.

Also On Tap for Today:

What are you making this Labor Day Weekend?

Late summer bliss

August is winding down, people are talking back to school, stores are selling Halloween candy and pumpkin spiced nonsense… and I’m here, pretending to be immune to it all, soaking up some late summer bliss.  

late summer bliss balloon

This has been a summer to remember.  

Fortunately I have an Instagram feed and recently acquired old school journal to help with that remembering… (most days I forget where 90% of the things we need are… and then there was that one time Grace announced, “Mom, one of your children is missing!”… it was Nicky.  And he was in the driveway.  And yes, I was sure to write that down because it seemed both hilarious and intensely terrifying.).  

late summer bliss

The kids and I have spent nearly every day of the last 2 1/2 months down the Cape, free from the rush and routine of our city lives, which has been both exhilarating and disorienting.  We’ve missed Nick terribly while he’s been at work during the week, and packed as much adventure into our weekends with him as possible.  

late summer bliss tomatoes

late summer bliss 1

We put quite a dent in the summer bucket list we made as a family back in June (which I wrote on the first page of the aforementioned journal… I am basically a middle schooler trying to have the best summer ever).

FAMILY SUMMER BUCKET LIST 2017

  • Take an airplane ride (Grace) — LOL. NO.
  • Cape Cod Museum of Art (Elizabeth)
  • Feed the ducks at the lake (Nick)
  • Go on adventures (Grace) — I’m going to make an executive decision and call this done
  • Go to Provincetown (Elizabeth) — We took an impromptu drive up last weekend, but I sort of want to go back again immediately, if not sooner.
  • Farm visits (Elizabeth) — We’ve been to the Taylor-Bray Farm a few times this summer
  • Get a library card (Grace) — One of my favorite days!  We’ve made good use of that card.
  • Drive a race car (Grace)… this hasn’t happened yet, but we are taking her to the go-carts next week, so… that must count?
  • Plant a garden (Elizabeth) — Nick upped the ante (and kept things alive) by adding a drip irrigation system 
  • Play in the sprinkler (Grace)
  • Pirate museum (Nick) — We went to the Wydah Pirate Museum in July to see treasure from the Wydah, a pirate ship that wrecked of the coast of Marconi Beach in 1717 (the dive site is still active)
  • Berry picking (Elizabeth) — Blueberries!
  • Mini golf (Elizabeth) — I think we accomplished 3 holes before Nicky tried to go swimming in the decorative water feature thing
  • Bowling (Nick)
  • Eat at Hangar B (Elizabeth)
  • Band concert (Elizabeth) — we made it to 3 of Harwichport’s Music in the Port nights
  • Play in the pool (Grace) — No pools, but lots of “underwater diving” in Nantucket Sound
  • Make a safety plan (Grace)… can you tell she’s my daughter? Safety first, fun second.  Also, a safety plan would have really helped on a day like this one… so maybe I should get on this.
  • Go to the playground (Grace) — and not just any playground, legit the best playground
  • Fireworks (Grace) — Maybe this weekend in West Dennis?
  • Make tie dye shirts (Grace) — She made one for herself, Nicky and all of the cousins
  • Go to a “baseball concert” (Grace)… I think she meant a game… and I totally blew it (the Cape League season ended two weeks ago)
  • Bubbles (Nicky)… a solid contribution to the list
  • Drive in movies (Nick)

There’s still time, people.  THERE IS STILL TIME.

late summer bliss days cottages truro

I knew this would be a fun summer, but I hadn’t anticipated that it would be more significant than that.  My time alone with Grace and Nicky truly has been something special.  Something to cherish.  Something to reflect on. Something to miss when they’re older and can drive themselves to get ice cream.  Something to learn and grow from as a mother (and, like, a regular person). 

Late summer is perfect for this sort of thing (learning, growing, reflecting).  

late summer bliss lifeguard stand

late summer bliss 2

As the season begins to shift, we inevitably do too.  

Soon we will fall back into our routines.  We’ll spend more time actually doing things, and less time counting boats and birds.  We’ll have more structure to our days, and less sand in our shoes.  We’ll have a little time apart (likely important for the sanity of everyone involved) while the kids are in school.  And we’ll eat less ice cream (again… important).

late summer bliss days cottages

But for now, for these last few weeks, we’re going to live in our late summer bliss.

Also On Tap for Today:

How are you living your best late summer life?