April 15, 2014

365 Days, Week XV.

We are royally spoiled in this life.

Last week was quiet, and warm, and felt like the certain beginning of Spring with full blooms, fresh food and sunshiny warmer days. It was a slow start to the week with the husband out of town for two days. And it was heatwave warm, and even hot on the playground after school, causing the Craunlets to peel off all of their layers and cast them aside. It was a week of armloads of new books to read, and delicious dinners including fresh salads and tasty grillables. It was hours and hours spent outdoors enjoying the longer days of light, working in the yard, building new gardens, and hitting the trail.

Here she is, our week fifteen of 2014, in pictures:


Yes, that is a glass of red wine and a fabulous children's book [Toys Go Out] that I'm reading in bed. Because what else does one do when completely exhausted, after the Craunlets are all tucked into their beds, and the husband is out of town?


Made my own espresso this morning, solo. The girl child remarked with amazement that I could accomplish such a feat. 


Fresh arugula and chervil. And some piggy pork goodness. It's salad and grilling season again, YEAH!


Mini-daffodils are brightly blooming with rows of tiny blue glory-of-the-snow's behind them. LOVE my spring flowers, and how they rise up each year announcing the certain changing of seasons.


Getting ready for Zygote's Spring benefit party. Art + food, two of my very favorite things.


Fruit of our labor. All day outside working in the yard, and the evening is enjoyed by the fire. The days are longer, at last.


Walking in the woods, our weekly ritual that I love so much. Good to be tackling so many miles on our feet together.

April 10, 2014

365 Days, Week XIV.

A week of nutty coming-and-going, spurts of confident adventure and then indecision. And my, how the photos faithfully captured this! So, I've abandoned the format I've used all of the 13 weeks previous with a wordy introduction and a one-after-the-other photo review, for this more schizophrenic text-interwoven, and indecisive interplay. Feels right. Even editing this week's photos had me hemming and hawing. I suppose it is the essence of last week still having it's way.

We enjoyed an unexpected Monday off of school [after we got over the disappointment of trying to drop them off to school, and having to quickly adjust work plans] and we played at the zoo during the mega sunny afternoon. The Craunlets were *mostly* good sports.


Then, completely frazzled by the day, we went out for pizza to recuperate.

03.31.2014 (done with the day)

Tuesday and Wednesday I eked out some time in my studio working on a print + collage piece with some sewing. Was nice to enjoy a cleaned up workspace, and the quiet rhythm of making progress on a few pieces. And an even bigger project that is in the works...


The cleaning of the studio, and the searching high-and-low for the presumed lost long-collected stash of doilies, at last uncovered their whereabouts. I nearly cried when I found them, I've been hand-trimming and printing this amassed collection for seemingly forever. So glad to have them back.


And then it's Thursday already, because the week was absolutely marching by! I tried out my new rain jacket, and my shiny red rubber rain boots. Words cannot express my joy this blustery day! I spent two hours of my afternoon cheerfully cleaning the grounds of the Craunlet's school. Uniforms matter people!


We packed up our over-nighter bags that evening for a quick trip to Pittsburgh that we planned directly following after school pick-up on Friday. We arrived at dinner time, and the Craunlets were crazy amounts excited. I've got a certain love affair for photos in hotel rooms, they always have that glass wall of natural light...and the textured wallpaper. Not sure what the obsession is entirely, but I made the Craunlets take the cheezer below.


After a great and quick local-fare dinner, we trekked into the city for a view and a ride on the incline. This little lady is growing up so fast. I love how she walked right up to the edge, wind blowing and just contemplated the city; confidently taking it all in. 

04.04.2014 (this brave girl child)

After our evening of city adventure, Nathaniel concluded that Cleveland was definitely in want of both a mountain and a tunnel. Kid's got a pretty good point. We spent the next day occupied by a mix of activity, getting at the reason the trip was prompted. There was an afternoon bridal shower, and a morning location scout for the upcoming wedding photography fun. And then there's the whole mandatory hotel swimming adventure that all childhood memory's seem to include...

04.05.2014 (cold morning swim)

04.05.2014 (where the wedding will happen)

Talk about a gorgeous chapel, and a glorious wall of light?! And it's magically situated on a small mountain, as are all things Pennsylvania it seems? The surrounding grounds are equally captivating. I loved this Hansel and Gretel shot of Nathaniel and Isabella.


So we played hard, then we attended the bridal shower (the boy contingents did some IKEA shopping) and we made the quick trip back to Cleveland and to our own beds.  We woke to a glorious Spring-temped Sunday, and took to the trail. Definitely good to be back in the MetroParks.


It was warm enough that evening, that we broke out the grill for dinner, and played in the back yard. Nathaniel was quite the goober this week, crazy faces and photo-bombing any of my serious efforts, yet still at the end of the week I somehow feel guilty that he is so under-represented. So there's this:

04.06.2014 (the child who is crazy for bubbles)

Week fourteen proved a very nutty ride. It was full of laughs and adventure, family and fun. We worked hard, played hard, and pushed through another week.

April 2, 2014

365 Days, Week XIII.

I mostly took this entire week off from work, and I enjoyed a Spring Break with the Craunlets who were also off from school. WARNING: This week is ALL CRAUNLET ALL THE TIME. We picked up and headed to Niagara Falls at the end of the week, but we occupied ourselves quite handily in Cleveland in the days ahead of and after our mini-vacation.

I committed to picking up my DSLR camera this week, and I dutifully carried her around with me all week. Though she is a lot more to lug around than my phone, I was instantly delighted by how much more invested I was in the shots that I was trying to capture. I had a host of varied reasons that fueled my interest, mainly having more time and freedom in my schedule, as well as refreshing my memory and honing my photo skills in advance of a family wedding for which Dave and I have agreed to be the photographers! EEP! We are just about one month out for that, and though I'm mostly completely excited, I've got a healthy dose of absolutely terrified that I am calming with more camera time for my photo-a-day challenge. 

So, it's pretty much a win-win situation. It's also been a nice shot of reinvigoration for my photo-a-day challenge, as I was just starting to feel the grind of capturing a shot each day, and the stress of racing through time and still needing to get a photo captured on the day's books.

A mix of shenanigans, week thirteen of 2014 was utterly exhausting, but just as much fun, here's the photo round-up:


Good grief, this young lady. We spent the day at the Great Lakes Science Center with friends, and I instantly enjoyed this gloriously lush gray wall flooded with indirect light. I could have stayed in this very spot for hours.


The little bear snuggled under a cozy side table in the living room with a small yellow ball. Sunny afternoon.


A wonderfully full day of exploring the Cleveland Museum of Art enjoying the museum's awesome interactive ArtLens app. LOVE the grand atrium, and am smitten with this shot of Isabella trying to capture some of the magic of this space as well.


The Buffalo Museum of science. Nate waits as Daddy builds his car for the race that he obviously wins. Every.Single.Time.Hands.Down.


My favorite of all of our Niagara photos. Holy awesome winds! That smile, and the pure exhilaration of enjoying all of that mist. What a wonder, and an absolutely unforgettable quick trip.


Recouping with reading. A day spent quietly and mostly home, unpacking, catching up on the household, and turning the pages of our piles of library books.


Mom gets the 'all thumbs down' on her room arrangement ideas. This is the first of three straight days of intense Spring cleaning + rearranging of the Craunlet bedrooms. Here we tackle Isabella's space.

March 31, 2014

365 Days, Week XII.

What a weird week of still-winter here in Cleveland. We marched ourselves to Honey Hut for their first day of their season in freezing cold temperatures, and the Craunlets enjoyed their first ice creams with their gloves on. However, it proved an exhilarating one-mile walk after school, and the most perfect spoiler to our dinner on Monday night. 

We all counted down the busy days of this week, leading up to next week's Spring Break. We enjoyed sunny afternoons on the playground, and Dave and I enjoyed another hooky day on Friday. We've decided to make this a monthly gig -- both of us taking off of work on a weekday, and spending the entire day eating and drinking with much merriment together doing something totally fun and unplanned while the Craunlets are at school. For this week's hooky day we breakfasted at Lucky's, spent a big chunk of our day touring the Maltz Museum of Jewish History, and then afternoon-snacked at Cleats with a couple of beers. Pretty much perfect.

Next, we kicked off our Spring Break with a weekend of running around on miscellaneous errand, and we took the Craunlets to see the new Lego movie in the theater. All in all, week twelve of 2014 proved to be pretty fun, albeit still disappointingly wintry temperatures. Here's the round-up:


Honey Hut's first day open. It was a cold walk, and ice cream was enjoyed with gloves -- but completely worth tradition! I am thankful for these little pro-walking advocates, we trekked a mile for this ice cream, and it was the sweetest reward.


Drivers license renewal. This BMV was shockingly color-coordinated down to the finest level of detail. Grateful I passed the vision test [just barely] once again.


Dave and Isabella, watching Nathaniel's musical performance. I LOVE our school, and am so grateful we have this great option in our neighborhood.


Book bag pile; all of us ready for our respective days. So glad I can drive and drop them off, and still give them kisses on their foreheads.


Day of with Dave! Our once-a-month hooky day. Here are our morning coffees at Lucky's. So grateful for this man, his love, and our beautifully imperfect life together. 


Decisive splurges at the weekly farmer's market. A curly fern, and a delicious chocolate almond mousse cake.


So grateful we are free to gather and worship. And look at that majestic blue sky -- Spring is coming!

March 18, 2014

365 Days, Week XI.

A few moments of last week looked and felt like Spring. It was the tiniest glimmer of hope that this eternal winter will indeed lift. My workload is lightening, and the flexibility of getting said work done remotely has helped out considerably. It's been a lot of screen-time and clickety-clackety hours on the mouse, but it has also been a week of coffee shops and lunches with friends, increased sunshine, and I had some seriously exciting good news delivered this week [more on that soon]!

After a hooky day with the kids who "thought they might be sick" this week, the husband and I determined to take one-a-month for ourselves. We did this for my birthday last month, and it was such the royal treat to eat, drink, and play all day while the Craunlets were at school. 

We are putting on the last pots of soup, and baking cookies, and doing our darndest to let winter know it's on its way out. We are Spring cleaning, and looking forward to our gardens that are beginning to wake up from their long slumber. On the cusp of the season's change, I bring you week eleven of 2014:


I called the day short, and took myself out to lunch. Enjoyed a moment in the sun, and pressed the reset button.


A most delicious macchiato, but a very odd shoppe -- one that cannot seem to overcome its location.


A firm believer that the cookie jar should always be full. This week, we baked our favorite Cowboy Crunch cookies.


The girl child, trying to listen to her body, and taking a mental health day. Love those eyes.


Working remotely at my favorite spot, glad to have this luxury + flexibility, in a season where I'm craving more quiet.


My favorite spot; the corner of the kitchen counter by the window. Feels like home to sit here.


Craunlets in costume for some Purim celebrations at church.

March 17, 2014

365 Days, Week X.

Yes, more than a full week behind on this one. I'm hitting the mark with week ten, where I am frantic for more picture ideas, and getting sucked into the busy of the everyday before I've captured an image that I am happy with. 

This week brought a lot of wrestling. In a good way, I'm thinking about how my days and weeks are full of patterns, a comfortable normal, with a fair amount of curve balls mixed in for good measure. Most days, I felt a visceral push to pay closer attention to details, to sit a little bit longer and notice. 

It was a work week with an unusually heavy load, a week that started with a trip to the doctor, and ended with a sick child. There was a lot of tending. It was quieting, and introspective. It was a mix of moments and patterns, this tenth week of 2014:


Curtain in the doctor's office. Waiting, waiting, and so thankful to have access to such great healthcare.


One of my favorite 'everyday' necklaces, made by a local artist from found beach plastic.


Tacos seasoning, take two. Amped up heat and a bit more smokey. The corn tortillas, however? Total fail.

Coffee mug at work, leftover bits of lunch and my water bottle. Remnants, and sweet memories of a lost colleague.


New skirt. It was nearly Spring today, and I stopped into a little resale shoppe and picked up a skirt. Love the lines.


Vegetable tart from the Market made an instant lunch when we returned home. Warming and hearty.


Sick child, ready to be all better. Getting bored of all the resting.

March 16, 2014

And So.

The boy child was sick, and then we had a snow day, then the boy child thought he might be sick again, and then the school administrator called and asked me to come in and pick up the girl child who was certain she felt sick.

So, we changed to her into pajamas, and got the couch all set up for the next sick patient. Only, she never got sick. She tried being sick for about two hours, she watched an American Girl Movie, read a book, tried to rest...

and then she pretty much just played hooky for the rest of the day. 

After chilling on the couch, hitting the bathroom, and then eating her packed lunch from school, she was all better. I suppose we all need a mental health day on occasion, I just hope this doesn't become a new habit around here -- we cannot possibly be at the age for purposefully playing hooky from school yet, can we?


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