It's about that time..

...to start stressing about Christmas cards. Oh, yes, I will admit it. I spend waaay too long obsessing over the issue. I remember getting a card from a friend last year and loving not only the card but the back of it (a cute pattern). It's all in the details, peeps! So I took a mental note of Tiny Prints and knew they'd be the first I'd stalk this year. Without further adieu, my faves:                                               

I love all things yellow right now. And that pattern? So fab.
 I love the simple punch of this card.
 I've never been the "tell the story of our year" type of person but this card about converts me.
 So simple and clean! Love!
 I like how the picture is the main focus in this next card. The back has me pretty smitten too. Another cool thing about Tiny Prints is that you can add pics and writing on the back of all cards too.

We have family pics on Tuesday and I'm trying to decide on what card before then so we can coordinate to the card. Nerdalicious? Oh well.


Friday Dump

I decided Friday will be my official day to dump the photos I've taken with my iphone. It's been so fun to have such a portable camera with me since I'm a little - ya know- obsessed with pictures.
mmm...pumpkin muffin:
 just lovin' on mae mae:
 some snuggle time with baby Soren:
 Decs love to stack blocks!
 more mae mae cuddles (on the "dogless" couch..um yeah...):
 after a seizure scare last week, jack seems to be feeling better:
 gorge! (taken from the car when waiting for Mark to get off work):
 this is a notable moment b/c the dog beds are usually empty and they are on the couch:
 Decs wasn't so sure about the car wash:
 our favorite cold morning b.fast- oatmeal and blueberries:
Happy Friday!!


Pumpkin Patch

Fall is my absolute favorite time of year and I always look forward to memory filled family outings. The pumpkin patch has become a staple. Declan talked about it for weeks leading up to it (when will I learn not to share plans with him so early?) Some highlights:

Riding a horse for the first time!
They had huge bouncy pillows that the kids flocked to:
 Pig races (though Decs was totally distracted by a near by haunted house):
 Papa and Nana joined us!
Grandma (and Aunt Colie and Asher) joined us later as well:
Uncle Erik, Aunt Jess and baby Evie came too! (Here I'm with my sweet niece, Evie):
 This is my favorite picture ever!! Declan and his cousin Asher adore each others company. It's so fun to see them do life together. This picture makes me smile every time- such pure joy:
 Asher, Evie Decs (missing 5 week old baby Soren):
 Our little fam, Roca 2011:


Fall Friday

It is an absolutely GOR-geous Fall Friday here today. Fortunately, I got to spend it with this cutie patootie:
 In his "pirate ship":
 I love the beginning of cool weather...cuffed jeans and long shirts. By Spring, they are high waters!
 So blessed.


Pumpkin Muffins

A friend introduced us to these easy peasy pumpkin muffins last year. They have been favorites of ours and rarely last more than a day around here. Declan is all over all things food prep related so we made these together, or as he says "doing the recipe".

Brace yourself, it's hard:
 Pumpkin Muffins
-1 box of yellow cake mix
-1 can of pumpkin
-dash of cinnamon
Heat oven to 350 and bake muffins for 18-22 minutes.
Inhale before gone.


a check off the ole bucket list...

A few months ago some girlfriends and I were hanging out when the idea of running a 5k came up. We all enthusiastically jumped on board. None of us had run a race with the exception of one gal who is a running rockstar and had lots of advice to share.

You know when you have an idea that sounds super fun until you actually have to put it in to action? Yeah, that was this. Several of us started the couch to 5k program. About 6 weeks in, I was getting frustrated with the run/walk set up and not feeling like I was accomplishing much (except utter exhaustion and soreness in areas that have never been sore). Out at Mahoney.State.Park this year, I stepped out on the trails for the first time (I had been training on the treadmill). That is when things changed and I ditched the program and, for the first time in my 30 years of life, ran a mile straight without stopping.

Today was full of excitement and anxiety. All of us girls had nervous tummies but were pumped to get underway.
Once the race began, I immediately realized it was going to be harder than I expected. There was extra energy in the air and that was helpful but it was tough. Right before mile 1, I had chest pain (um, yeah, never good, right?) After a little slow down to make sure I was going to drop right then and there, it was back to the road. See the little cheerleaders, below?
I'm not going to lie, 1.5 miles-2.5 miles were brutal. If you are a runner, that is probably your warm up, so don't judge. But, when I saw the State Capitol, I knew I was almost done. Hallelujah! I rounded the corner to the finish line and I saw my family and friends. What a rush! My best friend ran out, grabbed my hand and filled my ears with encouragement as we sprinted over the finish line. 
Tears were streaming down my face and it hit me: I did it. The girl who avoided running at all costs while playing sports, did it. At the beggining of this year, I wore a 70+ pound fat suit that I worked my butt off to shed. This was the perfect punctuation to that journey.
Success! A plan was made, worked hard for and obtained! It is a feeling that is difficult to explain. I wish I could bottle it up and revisit it when needed. 
I couldn't have even started to do this without Mark's support. He put up with my training schedule even if it meant inconveniencing his plans. Tonight, after the race, he pulled me aside and gave me a big hug and said he was super excited and proud to see me cross the finish line. Makes me choked up to have made him so proud. 
And how blessed to have parents and in-laws that have cheered on the journey, too?!
So, first and only 5k? We'll see... 


sweet moments

Of our two dog children, Sophie Mae (aka "Mae Mae") is definitely the most patient with Decs. Since we moved next door, her favorite spot is Declan's bed when we're upstairs. He takes full advantage of wrapping her in blankets and cuddling her. Last night he asked me to take a picture and after taking these 3 he said "I just looooove Mae Mae". Presh!

Oh, Pinterest, how I love thee...

I'm pretty sure y'all all know about Pinterest, right?! If not, it's the amazingly addictive fabulous virtual pin board. This past week the following pins came to life in our household:


How I got ready for the day in peace several times:

Printed this off and started checking things:

This is barely scraping the surface. I'll keep my projects/recipes/light bulb moments updated on this blog. Any awesome pins out there?



Lately our Saturdays have continued to be full of micro soccer and college football.
This little man has been in much better spirits (the pre 3 funk has faded, thank you Lord).
We've been soaking up the last few good zoo days. The membership we invested in last year has been the best decision ever. 
With the gorgeous Fall weather, my photography business has kept me SO BUSY. Loving it!!!
Lastly, I've been training for my first ever 5k. This gal does not run. I would rather work out any other way in fact. Stay tuned for the follow up. ;)



There is nothing cuter than the sweet prayers of a 3 year old old. 
For reference- Jack and "Mae Mae" are our dogs.
The camera made Decs act a little extra goofy but this is pretty accurate. There is always a long rambling of who Declan's thankful for. Nothing wrong with that! ;)