Archive for the 'Marriage + Family' Category

family mission statement

family mission statement

The boys are in Europe visiting family for three weeks, and just two days in, I feel like a new person. I’m soaking up this time of catching up, resting, deep cleaning, and organizing both my surroundings and my thoughts. So thought I’d revisit this little internet space of mine that’s been neglected for a few months and post our recently drafted family mission statement.

Probably every self-help book on the topic of being more successful, effective, organized and disciplined, suggests writing out a life mission statement and I loved 52 Bites’ idea for a family statement. Our struggles revolve mainly around wasting time, buying too many pointless things, and living in our comfort zones. We’re hoping that hanging this on our wall will remind us of who we’re striving to be.

posted by christine in Marriage + Family,Personal and have Comments (4)

random acts of kindness day

News events like last week’s Boston tragedy break my heart a little more than they did before. Maybe it’s because I don’t want Lincoln to grow up in such a broken world or because I’m so helpless to protect him or explain exactly why these things happen.

But I was touched by this Fred Rogers quote and the comforting words of his mother. Even as an adult, I am comforted reading those words. There are always helpers. There still are loving people in this world in the midst of hate, bitterness, and disaster.

So while I can’t protect Lincoln, I can strive to be an example of love and service, and maybe a little bit will rub off on him as he grows up. And maybe he’ll even quote me too and it’ll end up all over the internet one day. ha!

My big goal for this year was to love a little more, so when a friend (who is an amazing and inspirational life coach) suggested picking a day of the week to do random acts of kindness, I started taking notes. She does 3-4 things for others on her day, but I think I’ll start out smaller. Even though extra effort is involved at first, the thought of doing nice things for unsuspecting people is enlivening. I can’t wait until this becomes a normal part of our daily routine.

. . . . . . .

Some of my favorite ideas include leaving a kind note in a library book for the next person to find, making care packages for the homeless, and visiting someone who is sick (and bringing them flowers!). There are tons of ideas on Pinterest and We might put 100 or so in a jar and pick two each week. Do you guys already do random acts of kindness? If not, join in on the challenge!

posted by christine in Marriage + Family,Personal and have Comment (1)

a party for pickle. with just us. it was a happy day.

We wanted to spend Lincoln’s birthday together – just the three of us – to soak it all in. We started new traditions – played with balloons in the morning, made funfetti pancakes, looked through photos from the past year, opened gifts, danced with our party hat on, ate grilled cheese sandwiches with pickles, and lost count of how many times we sang the birthday song. Oh and there was a Linky-sized cake involved too. He tasted the chocolate, made a face, then proceeded to use it as body paint and had the time of his life. I think he likes birthdays.

posted by christine in Baby + Kids,Holidays + Seasons,Marriage + Family,Parties + Entertaining,Personal,Pregnancy + Motherhood and have Comments (4)

mommy and son shoot by diana marie photography

Sweet Diana was in town back in July and shot these amazing images of me and Links. I love how they capture the moments of quiet simplicity in our everyday. It was so great to finally meet her in person and have the honor of being in front of her camera. So excited she’s moving to the East Coast in just a few months! Hoping we get to see a lot more of her. :]

posted by christine in Baby + Kids,Marriage + Family,Personal,Photography,Pregnancy + Motherhood and have Comments (3)

our family shoot by anne robert photography | featured on style me pretty

This past April, when Lincoln was almost 3 months old, the super sweet and talented Anne Robert came to document a weekend morning in our home. These are just a small handful of favorites. The shoot was featured yesterday morning on Style Me Pretty and I have to say, it’s pretty darn thrilling being featured on that lovely little site. Thank you, ladies! And Anne, we’ll cherish these images forever. They’re more awesome than we could’ve asked for. See the post here and the full photo gallery here.

From the post:

The plan was to move to DC right after our wedding. Despite multiple trips and our diligent apartment hunting efforts before then, we found nothing. Everything was either too small, too expensive, too far away or had carpet. Back in Chicago, my anxiety levels were rising at the thought of not having a home to move to. The day before our wedding, Andrew, notoriously compulsive, called to compound my stress level by announcing that he had signed a lease, all on his own. The price was right, it was big enough, in a great location, and there were hardwood floors. So I knew there had to be something seriously wrong with it. The perfect apartment? Just like that?

Fast forward to moving day. The lobby wasn’t very promising, and the hallways were reminiscent of The Shining, so I held my breath as we turned the doorknob. What I experienced next was most unexpected. It felt like home. All my stress unraveled, and my heart swelled with the knowledge that we’d have many beautiful memories in this place with pink bathroom tiles. That I belonged here and it was perfect for the two of us. And two and a half years later, the three of us.

Interior decorating quickly became a hobby, and I’ve loved putting together all the details of our apartment. We both work from home, Andrew for the government and I own Ink Lemonade, a calligraphy and paper design company, so we needed to combine style, comfort, and function in our little 900 square foot, one bedroom space. With the addition of our little man, we really needed to get creative and opted for a nursery corner in our room.

So welcome to our home, SMPers! Needless to say, we spend a lot of time here, and when we’re not working, we make fancy breakfasts and spend an embarrassing amount of time in bed cuddling with Pickle (whose real name is Lincoln). Cue the amazingly talented Anne Robert to capture us recreating a weekend morning. Albeit with nicer clothes than usual. Thanks for stopping by! But before you go, take a look out that big window overlooking the treetops of Glover Park. It’s our favorite thing. We’ve watched many a sunset from that window and the seasons changing too.

posted by christine in Marriage + Family,Personal,Photography,Pregnancy + Motherhood and have Comments (2)

date night dc | monument hopping in a convertible

So we went monument hopping on Friday! Inspired by a friend who told me about her recent experience cruising around DC in a convertible, I thought it would be the perfect low-key date night. I renewed our ZipCar membership and booked a convertible near our neighborhood. And that same friend made it happen by babysitting for us last minute. :]

We grabbed dinner to-go at Shake Shack (duh), then drove around to see the monuments, then finished off the night at Pitango Gelato. Nothing fancy, but you see the city through totally different eyes when you drive without a roof over your head. I think we’ll start doing this convertible thing in every city we visit from now on.

DC tourists, you would love this! I highly recommend it for seeing the monuments at night and experiencing the city. Everything is so much more vibrant. And the GW Parkway is probably the most ideal stretch of road for convertible-driving with the most thrilling view of DC.

posted by christine in Marriage + Family and have No Comments

project grandma + grandpa

There are some people out there without Facebook. And worse yet, without computers. Which means they can’t read this blog, which is kind of a small tragedy. And they don’t spend time on Pinterest, which is a bit of a bigger tragedy. I suppose they do more meaningful things that don’t require a bright, addictive, eye-damaging screen.

Our grandparents are these people, and I’m taking a semi-break from all these sites to bring Facebook to them. So even without a computer, they can feel like a part of our everyday lives. No Instagram needed. Status updates and photos will be handwritten, printed, and sent through the mail weekly, the old-fashioned way. Because after all, that’s usually the best way anyway.

posted by christine in Calligraphy + Handlettering,Marriage + Family,My Projects,Personal and have No Comments

extraordinary moments

I hope your weekend is filled with them. :]

posted by christine in Marriage + Family,Personal and have Comment (1)

family shoot inspiration

Months before Linky’s arrival, I started a Pinterest board with some of my favorite family shoots from around the web (our first one is this weekend!). I knew I wanted simple, candid photos in our home, with great natural light, and just us being us on a typical Saturday morning. These are some of my favorites:

source unknown

the glow

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the glow

source unknown

the glow

the glow

the glow

oana befort

carissa gallo

francoise hardy via

P.S. If you’re in the DC area, my super talented photographer friend Diana is in town doing shoots in early June. Contact her if you’re interested!

posted by christine in Marriage + Family,Photography,Pregnancy + Motherhood and have Comment (1)

[date night: dc] washington national cathedral + 2amys

Being homebodies and now parents, Andrew and I really need to be intentional about going out on real dates. We love our couch time – watching movies as we scoop out ice cream from our individual Hagen Daaz tubs, but whenever we do go out, we always vow we’ll do it more often. That’s why I love this idea of having a date box. This new blog feature is my version of that. Most will be DC dates, but there might be some New York and Chicago posts too since we’re there a few times a year. They’ll usually have two activities (ideally located in the same neighborhood), one of which will be food/drink related.

As of last week, Lincoln is successfully taking a bottle, and my brother has offered to babysit next week! We’re thinking a concert at the National Cathedral and pizza at 2Amys afterwards…

And how awesome is this tip for keeping the marriage sparks flying?!

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posted by christine in Marriage + Family,Travel and have Comments (2)