Category Archives: relationships

Our Time. Year 6.

Last month I boarded a plane and headed out for my 6th annual Thread weekend.

People still get a kick out of hearing how we all met. Some are kind of weirded out. Especially border guards. Most everyone is amazed we make this weekend happen every single year.

But for us? It’s our one weekend a year to see each other outside of our imessage thread and secret instagram stories.

It’s our time to be carefree and not have to worry about kids or jobs. It’s our time to be silly. It’s our time to laugh. It’s our time to have 1 AM dance parties. It’s our time to wander farmers markets. It’s our time to get dressed up. It’s our time to sit around in our soft clothes drinking coffee. It’s our time to drink maybe a little too much and eat too many Cool Ranch Doritos.

It’s our time to talk too much. And also our time to sit in silence with one another, completely content.

It’s our time to just… be.

These ladies all came into my life (and I, theirs) at a time when we all needed it the most. Maybe in ordinary “real life” circumstances, we never would have become friends. But I like to think we’re extraordinary. No, we didn’t grow up together or go to college together. By the time we knew each other, we’d all graduated college, had married our husbands, bought houses, had at least our first kid. But at this point in our friendship, we have been through other milestones – Sad things like miscarriages, infertility, and loss of family members. Scary things like kids starting school, kid problems. Exciting things like career changes, following dreams, and now even running for public office.

I love these ladies fiercely. And every year, all year long, I look forward to our time.

A Traveling Working Mom’s Rant – Some things never change

Back when I blogged regularly, and while I was also contributing to a blog all about being a working mom – you know, back when I had two kids not three. And my now 5 and a half-year-old middle child was my 3-month-old youngest child – I wrote a blog post all about how maddening it is to be a working mom and get the comments about “how hard it must be” and “who is taking care of the kids.”

Well, fast-forward five years. We’ve added another kid to the mix and I now have a job where I work remote and travel fairly often. That blog has been long-since shut down, but I just stumbled upon the original post I wrote, and I have to say that I am unpleasantly surprised and how much things have not changed.

Since I took my very first work trip away as a mother, when my now almost 10-year-old was 3 months old, and literally every single trip since, at some point before, during or after my trip, I’m asked, “so who’s watching your kid(s) while you’re away?”

It’s come from women. It’s come from men. It’s come from executives. It’s come from fellow parents.

Then when I tell them that the kids at home with their dad, their jaws drop. Disbelief written all over their faces. Every time.

It boggles my mind that people assume that just because I’m the mom and I’m traveling that I must have left the kids with my mother or my sister or my mother in law or some other capable woman. That my husband can’t handle parenting the kids by himself or be bothered to leave work in time to pick our kids up before daycare closes.

My most recent trip was the worst I’ve heard it in a while. I was gone for back-to-back trade shows for a total of 15 days. It was brutal. For all of us. Two days in Vegas is too long, let alone two weeks. I had never been away from the kids or him for that long. I was exhausted. He was exhausted. We all missed each other.

People were unrelenting. The moment they heard how long I was going to be gone they immediately asked a) Do you have kids? followed quickly by b) Who is taking care of them while you are away?

Why is it so hard to believe that my husband, my childrens’ FATHER, is taking care of his kids while I’m out of town. It not only pisses me off, I take offense to it on his behalf.

I get that he’s not the norm when it comes to things like this. I remember one time, after returning home from a trip I took when Reese was a few months old, he told me (“no offense”) it was kind of nice to have me gone because it meant he got to do more with the baby.

My job is just as important as his job. And likewise, our children are just as important to him as they are to me. We are in this parenting gig together. That means we both juggle schedules, make sacrifices accordingly. As a team. When he has to work late, that means I’m on pick up and dinner duty and sometimes even bedtime duty solo. And when I travel, he jumps in and does the same. No hesitation.

Dads can be active parents too. Why is that so hard for people to understand/believe/accept!?

End rant.

On the reality of parenting

The other day, I read the article that’s sweeping social media called “The Day I stopped Saying ‘Hurry Up’“.

To be honest, I found myself scrolling through the article, skipping large chunks thinking “Hurry Up and get to the point…”

Look, I get it. I totally do. It’s meant to be a “stop and smell the roses” thing. A “life goes too fast” thing. These statements stem from the same place the “Cherish Every Moment” statement well-meaning old ladies tell moms that are dealing with epic meltdowns in the aisles of Target comes from.

We lead busy lives, but there are plenty of times when we can throw our agenda out the window and take our time. There are plenty of times when not only can we do that, but we do do that.

At what point does “slowing down” and “not rushing our kids” stop?…because for their sake it can’t certainly go on forever. We need to teach our kids responsibility and not to mention common courtesy and the value of others’ time.

Like work, for example. I am expected to by at work by 8 AM, Monday through Friday. I’m sure if I sent my bosses a link to this article they’d totally understand me being late to work because on any given day my kid(s) take 45 minutes to eat breakfast and/or 25 minutes to put their clothes on. Oh wait, no, this is reality…that’s not an option. So, sorry kiddos, but HURRY UP!

Or what about a doctor’s appointment? Or church? Or a lunch date with a friend you haven’t seen in ages? The list can go on and on.

I’m not bullying my kid who simply wants to enjoy life as the author of the article says as she makes an inward reflection on her life. I’m pretty set on raising my kids to not be assholes and part of that is punctuality.

Yes, life goes fast. Too fast. But that doesn’t mean that we don’t have places to be, by certain times.

My girls mean the world to me. I don’t cherish every moment because frankly, some moments as a mother just really suck. And I tell my kids to hurry up because sometimes I don’t care how many roses you want to stop and smell, I will pick you up and carry you like a sack of potatoes so we are not late to that doctor appointment. That doesn’t make me a bully. That doesn’t make me a bad mom. That just makes me a mom. A realistic one at that. And I love my kids just as much as any other mom. And I do cherish my time with them.


So maybe we’ll just have to agree to disagree on this one and you continue to live your happy life. And I’ll continue to live my happy life…and make it to work on time.

Just solidifying my old lady status

Holy crap I’m exhausted today.

As Brandy would say, “I mommed the shit out of this weekend.”


See? Even wore a total mom outfit…cardi, skinnies & ballet flats.

Andy was busy working outside all weekend {springtime in the country, it’s a beautiful thing.} hauling firewood, working on the tractor and just generally doing some spring cleaning on the property. That meant I was on solo kid duty.

Saturday I was showered and ready before 8 AM…that? never happens. The girls & I were out of the house by 10:30, hitting Target, of course. We did a bit of shopping then headed out to the airport to have lunch at my best friend’s restaurant…she’s working Saturday’s now/again {WOMP}, so I thought maybe she’d like a visit from a couple of cute little girls. {I got multiple compliments on how cute, darling & well behaved my girls are.}



After lunch we headed home and after Reese napped we headed outside.



Sunday the girls and I hit two grocery stores, grabbed doughnuts on the way home then spent a bunch more time outside. While Reese knocked out a 2-ish hour nap I weeded the front flower beds.

There was a mid afternoon bath for Rylee courtesy of the unfortunate placement of her head being directly in line with Reese spitting up.

Then of course there was the general household duties that I attempted to work in there too.

We topped off the weekend with ham, homemade mac-n-cheese, biscuits and veggies.

From sun up to sun down I didn’t stop. Chasing after kids. Holding a needy, teething Reese. Bending. Running. Cooking. Etc. Etc. Etc.

I had my phone tucked away nearly the entire weekend and it was glorious.

But now? I feel old. Like…I didn’t do anything seemingly out of the ordinary, yet here I am on Monday morning completely worn out and physically sore.

And as if it weren’t already completely obvious that I’m the oldest not-even-thirty-year-old on the planet {remember?}, I’ve gone and done it again…Today I’m over on Brandy’s blog ranting about how kids these days are kind of assholes. <–GO READ IT!

Apparently the sun got to me this weekend, because today? COLORED TIGHTS!


Happy Monday Friends!!

Throwing up on siblings, making out with boyfriends and epic surprises…

So, as part of my deal with partnering with Toyota and their TWIN project, we were asked to go check out The Camry Effect.

I started checking out the site, watched the video and immediately thought what a fantastic marketing campaign it was. I mean, even though I’ve never owned a Camry, I have so many amazing memories tied to cars throughout my lifetime…

Like the one time my sisters, mom and I were on our way down to visit my Grandma, driving along in our sweet tan station wagon that backfired. We must have been driving the back roads, because all I remember is getting super car-sick, and throwing up red Kool-Aid all over my oldest sister’s mint green pants and my mom having to pull over.


A few years later, in the same station wagon, my mom had taken my sisters, some friends and me up to the water slides one super hot summer’s day. I remember sitting in the “way far back” with the rear facing seats with my best friend and making faces at all the people we passed. Then on the way home, just blocks away from our friends’ house, the station wagon totally over heated and we had to pull over on a busy road and walk the rest of the way to their house.


We finally ditched the station wagons (yes, plural, we had not one but TWO!) when I was 5 or 6. We ended up with a new Ford Explorer, manual, of course. A few years after we got that car one of my sisters started learning to drive. We were on our way home from the coast, as a family, and she was driving. Well, we came to a stop sign, on an incline, for a railroad crossing…my sister must have killed it no less that 6 or 7 times trying to cross this incline when the cars started piling up behind us and she got so frustrated that she got out of the car and switched places with my dad. I still laugh every time I think of that…though I’m pretty sure she doesn’t.


I’ll never forget my first ride in one of Andy’s 78 Toyota FJ40 Land Cruisers. It was before we were even dating, I even had another boyfriend at the time, he was picking me up to take me to the local community college to show me around campus, take me out to breakfast and basically woo me into dating him. He drank Pepsi for breakfast and I thought he was crazy…some things haven’t changed a bit.


Mine & Andy’s first official date was not too long after that college tour. We went fishing. In his ’89 Corrola. He had that thing forever and I used to tell him I married him for his Corolla…well, that and because obviously as a teacher, he was going to be RICH someday. I’m not going to lie, I was a little bit sad when we sold the Corrola…we had some good memories in the thing. Yes, maybe even including a make-out session or two (or maybe even more, I’ll never tell)  while parked outside my dad’s house. {Sorry Dad!}


We drove away from our wedding in one of Andy’s ’78 FJ40 Cruisers…the lifted one. The one with the bikini top. The fancy one that he painted in our garage the week before our wedding and the one he was up until 2 AM putting back together the day of our wedding. We got some crazy looks driving through town (and the DariMart drive-through for Pepsis) all dressed up in our wedding clothes.


And probably my very favorite memory to date…the look on Andy’s face when he got home from 12 days in Alaska only to realize I schemed with our mechanic and got his beloved Cruiser running after sitting broken down in the garage for over 4 years. I still smile every time I picture his face. I’m still waiting for my wife of the year award for that one.


It makes me wonder what Rylee’s favorite memories will be…will she remember her first ride in “that Orange Thing”? I mean…obviously she won’t be making out with boyfriends in their cars. At least not until after she married. ;)

So, what about you? I know you’ve got to have a favorite memory or two tied to a vehicle. Let’s hear it!


Disclosure: I was selected for participation in the TWIN community through a program with Clever Girls Collective. I did not receive any compensation for writing this post, or payment in exchange for participating. The opinions expressed herein are mine, and do not reflect the views of the Toyota.