Wednesday, May 28, 2014

Erroneous Key Stroke Vacation

We're off to Palm Springs for our "Memorial Day Weekend" extravaganza.  Yes, that's right, I didn't double check the calendar for when Memorial Day Weekend ACTUALLY is, so we're a week off in our travel plans.  Nonrefundable and No Cancellations or Changes can really get one's heart beating fast it turns out. 

To follow our adventures into the blistering hot desert, Palm Springs, the land of milk and honey, find Realized Mama on Instagram.

Sunday, May 25, 2014

Flower of the Week: Peonies, Wearing Their Foundational Undergarments

If you are looking for a reason to justify holding onto an excessive number of bud vases that take up too much precious storage space in your cabinets, peonies will offer you just that.

They only last for a couple weeks.  Beautiful, ruffly, sweet and spicy, fleeting.

In the oh-so-eloquent words of my husband, they are like a beautiful woman hunched over from back pain because her breasts are too big. 

Fortunately this year I got them in their foundational undergarments in time to keep them perky.

Monday, May 19, 2014

Quill Pen

There comes a time in every girl's life that she just has to have a quill pen.  Right?  Or maybe that just runs in my family.  Either way, here's Genevieve's "olden days" hand scrolling project. 

Sunday, May 18, 2014

Flower of the Week

This was NOT an easy choice.  So much color and life opened up in the garden this week.

The one to showcase, though, is this iris.  The first year it's bloomed.  Salvaged from a torn up job site and plopped on the edge of our dry creek.

She's a natural beauty. 

I can't stop there, though.  Look at what else is happening....

I love you May.

Quote of the Day

Genevieve:  Mom, I can hear the barnacles whispering.

Coupeville Crush

Coupeville, can you get any more picturesque? 

What a lovely place to befriend inanimate objects.

 Coupeville, I have a Pacific Northwest crush on you.  There.  I said it.

Ribbon Cutting

Smith and Vallee Woodworks was hired to build furniture and architectural features from old growth fir trees that were incorporated into the new Island Transit Center in Coupeville.  We went to the grand opening to see Drew's work in action.  The girls and I usually only see the process in the wood shop and not the installed work when it comes to projects like this. 

Look at this wall!  I need one in my house now, please and thank you.

These picture frames graced every room and hallway,

Here's Wes photo bombing his craftsmanship,

Marguerite keeping everyone on track at the helm of these wheeled conference tables,

Drew, stress testing one of the benches with his wild offspring,

Happiest buses on earth,

We sure are proud of this guy and his business.

And we like free cake.

Friut Bowl Makes Life of Party

Early Saturday morning.  And by early, I mean EARLY.  Genevieve overhears her sleepy dad mention that he likes fruit salad.  She delves into investigative YouTube work, seeking out the ultimate fruit salad tutorial to make all of her Daddy's fruit salad dreams come true.  By default, I'm implicated.  No kid blood in this fruit salad please. 

The fresh faced blonde woman narrating the fruit salad bowl tutorial mentioned several times, in an exceedingly chippy voice that "this fruit salad is perfect for potlucks and will make you the life of the party!"  I don't imagine she and I ever running in the same circles, but it did make G the life of our EARLY SATURDAY MORNING breakfast party.

Thursday, May 15, 2014

Quote of the Day

While spending a forced family day doing yard work for Mother's Day....

Genevieve:  Marguerite, go supervise Dad and make sure he gets that done.

Girl has upper level management written all over her!

Tuesday, May 13, 2014


Marguerite and I went to Fairhaven Park while G was at school.  Just the two of us, a water bottle and a quilt to throw down on the grass.  There were two other moms there, two kids each, both kids in diapers.  They were holding their own, those two, juggling toddlers and nurslings and all of the crap that needs to get hauled for a couple of hours at the park.  I felt so light watching them.  Two free hands.  A kid on her own two feet.  Some days are heavy.  Some long.  This day, though, had a streak of light.

And a sprinkle of water.

Monday, May 12, 2014

Flower of the Week

I saved this Clematis from Home Depot's death row two Septembers ago.  Three dollars and barely a sign of xylem and phloem.

And here she is, proudly climbing to earn her Flower of the Week nod.

Saturday, May 10, 2014

It Was Worth It

The girls went upstairs.  We went outside for a beer in the sun.  A ten minute span of time to have a conversation with a beginning, middle and end, no interruptions  (and A LOT of suspense, humor, and character development) with my husband. 

There descent was clompy, loud, and echoing with giggles.

We got into your closet mama.  Don't be mad, it was worth it, because we look amazing.

I Like to Move It, Move It

Not sure why, but I can't figure out how to arrange our furniture.  Here's where the dust, and copious amounts of cat hair and wayward cheerios, settled this afternoon after a potential hernia inducing mix up.

I  want comfort.  I want it to be easy to find a place to sit.  I want a place to put a drink.  I want open space.  I want it to look good.  I want our unconventional space to look like a home. 

Getting there.  You feeling it?

Friday, May 9, 2014

Sugar and Snap

Genevieve.  A powerful package of sugar and snap.  Her first ever pair of dangly earrings, made from dungeness crab molts she pulled from the tideline.  First screaming and afraid of them, then curious, then treasures deemed.


Genevieve and I unpacked her school backpack, sorting through the colorful crayon drawings and homework that spilled out of her yoga dogs peachy folder.  She proudly held up a printed Mother's Day Poem, finished off with a picture she drew of me under the prompt, "draw a picture of what your mom looks like to you."  It was flowery and colorful, lots of hearts, black hair and curiously blue eyes. 

Read the poem mom.  I obliged.  A little ditty on how all moms are different from each other, with different strengths, but that we all do our best and love our kids.

That poem's not about you, mom.

What do you mean?

You're a yelling mom.  You're a mean mom.  You're not a sweet mom like the mom in the poem.

Swallow hard.  Try to let it roll off my back.  She's only five.  She doesn't know that her words are like a knife to my heart.  She doesn't know how hard I work at being the best mama I can be.  She doesn't know how much of me has been put to the side for her.  Fail.  Cry.  Cry hard.  Cry hard in front of my wide-eyed five year old.

What's wrong mama?  Why are you crying?

Because what you said was hard to hear.  What you said hurt my feelings.  What you said carried truth.

Long silence.

I didn't mean to make you sad.  It's just that you don't let me do whatever I want.  You don't let me eat as many doughnut holes as I want to.  You make me clean up my messes.  You yell when I don't listen.  But what I said was true.  You're not a sweet mom.  But your a good mom.  I love you mom.

Ebbing in to Mother's Day weekend feeling like I've been punched in the stomach, no wind behind these sails. 

I know that I want to raise a daughter who is respectful, who is kind, who is a good listener, who knows how to speak her truth.  I know that we reserve our most hurtful words for those we love the most.  That I have said things to my own mom that stung her, hurt her, were unforgettable. 

Mother to daughter, mother to daughter.  We laugh.  We love.  We yell.  We cry.  We try our best. 

Tuesday, May 6, 2014


There's a post-school hiccup we have.  Transitioning big sister back into the fold.  Today, I met it at the door - straight from the school bus to the Breadfarm for a pain au chocolat, split in half, G got the big half, and straight outside for sunshine, play,

and a few new poses from my posers.

Cold.  Hard.  Stare.  And a 4T corduroy skirt.

Leopard leotard. All day. Every day. Jealous?!

Gasp! (Did Marguerite's outfit take your breath away?)  That's right, this 3-year old rocked her leopard print leotard and pink ugg boots all about today.