This Halloween was great. The girls and I had a relaxed day at home. We went grocery shopping in the morning, came home and ate lunch, Magnolia took a nap. When she woke up, we had a little snack and then we went to the park. Cora rode her bike all the way there and all the way home.

We ate a scrumptious dinner and then the girls got in their costumes: Cora a cupcake, Magnolia a strawberry.

We went outside just in time to snap a few pictures and see Jake riding down the street on Scoot - home a whole half-hour early.

Then the real fun began: TRICK-OR-TREATING

Cora wasn't shy at all. She walked right up and said, "Trick-or-treat." After getting her treat, she always said, "Thank you!"

Magnolia walked up to her first stop, holding her purple pumpkin bucket, and was amazed when someone just handed her candy. We showed her how to put it in her bucket, and she was sold. It is a pretty remarkable thing, Goo.

Grocery Store

This was not my first trip to Whole Foods.

But this was the trip where I fell in-love.

The new store in Oklahoma City was less crowded, so I was able to take my time. I picked up the most beautiful bunch of kale, half of which I turned into Kale Chips this afternoon.

That was all fine and good, but the really amazing thing happened right after I put some vanilla and chocolate [soy] milk in my cart. I glanced up and there is was:


I almost cried. I did a little happy dance, and there may have been a shriek.

Oh but wait, it doesn't end there.

I walked down to admire the desserts to go. I eyed an oreo cake right away. Upon closer inspection, there was a big yellow sticker that said VEGAN on it. And next to it was a vegan chocolate cake, and next to that, a vegan carrot cake, and a little ways down was some vegan chocolate pudding. Each large piece of cake was $2.99. That's less than a small cupcake from Green Goodies, which is our go-to dessert place.

The stickers really did me in. I'm so used to looking at every ingredient label, but to have food advertise that it's vegan for me. That's all.

Whipped cream is what I've missed most. I loved making it, watching it fluff up, finding any excuse to make it, and using it in unconventional ways just because.

When I got home, I put all of the groceries away, and then I sat on the kitchen floor for a minute [or two] with my new found can of creamy goodness. I used my fingers as the utensil to get it into my mouth.

A Quick Note

This is just to say...

I love Chicago.

There is an energy in that city unlike any place I've ever been. It's invigorating, and it enlivens my soul.

Parts of this trip that are on my mind tonight:

1. Millennium Park - It's an amazing gathering place
2. Roosevelt University - Dedicated to the enlightenment of the human spirit - It's housed in an amazing building. I could spend hours wandering the halls and looking out every window.
3. Late night conversations with friends - though late has been redefined with small children who don't care what time you went to bed.
4. Chicago Temple [First United Methodist Church] - the tallest church in the world, and I've been to the top - I was thinking about Christina and what it would have been like if her dad was the Senior Pastor there. Their home would have been on the top three floors. No joke.

And I'm also randomly thinking about Christina's wedding and how I almost got to drive one of the church vans until someone asked how old I was and I didn't meet the age requirement for insurance. Bummer because it would have been some great early practice for...

5. After riding several buses, my desire to be a bus driver, if only for a day, has been reaffirmed. Make it an accordion bus, please.


I cannot wait for Thursday to roll around.


Because we will be in CHICAGO!

Dot's First Transformation: Paint

Picking the perfect greige to adorn Dot's walls was a painstaking process. When I had the colors narrowed down to two choices, I still couldn't figure out, so I did the only reasonable thing and googled Benjamin Moore Halo vs. Ashwood. I came across a blog called for the love of a house, and Joan happened to have Halo in her dining room and Ashwood in her living room. My dilemma was between night and day. I liked Ashwood more at night and Halo more during the day. I sent Joan an email explaining the situation and then said,

"This color will be throughout our entire house, and I was wondering if there was anything you could say about either one that might help make the decision a little easier. (I love adjectives and imagery.)"

She was awesome and gave me just what I needed. These were her descriptions:
"Ashwood is like a warm hug."
"Halo is like a beautiful soft smile."

We picked Halo.

The following are pictures we took of our freshly painted walls.

Our room looking into the hall and living room

Our room looking into the sun room (currently Magnolia's room - someday office-of-sorts)

Sun room/Magnolia's Room

Sun Room/Magnolia's room looking out to the deck

Jake hard at work on a second coat in the living room

Hall from our room looking into Cora's room

Living room into the dining room from Cora's perspective. Let it be known that this is the only known picture of me nursing a baby. I thought it was funny. Perfectly placed ladder.

Dining Room looking into the hall

Bathroom. So much better than the black/gray sponge painting that we initially thought was wall paper.

On for the love of a house, Joan calls Halo a whisper of color. I think she's right, and I love it for that.

When We Bought Dot

These are the realtor pictures of Dot when we bought her. These are the official before pictures.



Living Room

Dining room


Girls' Room (Currently just Cora's)

Office (Currently Magnolia's Room)

Deck off of the office
Back yard

Behind the Garage


The thing about sleep is that I miss it so.

For the last 16 months I've gotten approximately 6 hours of interrupted sleep each night. Note interrupted.

I have a sixteen-month-old, but she might as well be a newborn still, except we're used to one another. And she doesn't poop as much.

She's teething right now, like major teething. This past week has been worse than usual in the sleep department.

It started on Saturday (you know 8 days ago). We were in Holdenville at Jake's parents. I went to bed at 10:30 after a riveting International House Hunters. They have cable, we don't, but I'm still addicted to HGTV. I can't help myself.

So just as I went to bed, Magnolia woke up. And stayed up, until 2:30. At 2:15, Jake and I hit the streets of H-ville with Magnolia in her car seat. She was out surprisingly fast. By the time we got home and her in bed (yes, she miraculously stayed asleep between the car and her bed, though I was completely prepared to sleep in the car), and fell asleep, it was around 3:00. We woke up around 7:30. 4.5 hours of sleep. Nice.

One night during the past week, she only woke up once, it was a miracle, but since then, she's been waking up about 3 times a night. Just about every 3 hours on the dot. Newborn baby sleep pattern for sure.

She's still nursing, but we're in the weaning phase, I thought. I think it comes down to this: She doesn't have the ability to self-soothe just yet. She gave up her paci, that thing she was never too interested in, before she was 1. Cora kept that for a really long time. She doesn't have a little animal or blanket she's completely attached to. Cora loved to rub the little tags on beanie babies. She has me, and like I said, she is majorly teething, like 3 molars plus another tooth just for fun.

I'm just way deep down tired. My reserves are just about empty. I can feel it. I've been fantasizing about a cool room with a soft hum and a fluffy white comforter on a big bed that is all mine. And hours and hours of uninterrupted sleep.


I'm a perfectionist who practices the art of avoidance because failure is obviously not an option.


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