12 in 12: Or Why We’re Avoiding Home Renovations In 2013

Because my resolution of completing a ‘New Year’s resolutions’ post by January first, was the first to go, I’m happily joining up with¬†Dwija at House Unseen¬†for her 2012 in 12 Photos link up. Maybe meditating on the past year will help me focus on a few important resolutions rather than the 1,468 I’ve currently jotted…

2012 Christmas Letter

Dear family member, friend, stalker or random stranger, Merry Christmas and Happy New Year! Hopefully this letter finds you celebrating in the revelry of the Christmas season. Our family keeps our decorations up until February second, so reading this letter before then fulfills any obligation we have to each other of yearly holiday correspondence. Now…

And A Partridge In A Pear Tree

It’s the post so nice, I linked it thrice. Or it could just be that I’m lazy. And bloated. But in a very, very festive way. Perhaps you noticed how I didn’t “jump on” as promised and provide said ugly sweater photo? I’m not going to ask why you noticed, I’m just going to pony…

{SQT} Praying For A Healthy Christmas

1. We kicked off the week by taking Fulton to the ER on Sunday morning with breathing difficulties and a fever. I was thinking pneumonia and overnight admission, but thankfully, it was “only” a double ear infection, cold and dehydration combo that came out of nowhere. 2. We were discharged after eight hours of observation….

{p,h,f,r} Enjoying Every Moment Stuck Inside My House

It’s been a week of feasts here at the Mantoan crib. From stuffed shoes, to waking up extra early to make baked goods, to the yearly conversation I have with my husband on how we’re not using real candles in the St. Lucy crown. And crafts, oh so many crafts. So many wonderful traditions I’ve locked myself…

God Didn’t Answer My Prayer

My sister, my father and I managed to catch my mom completely off guard on Saturday with a surprise party at my parent’s house. After standing slack-jawed in the kitchen doorway for a full two minutes, my mom enjoyed visiting with friends and family who came to celebrate her upcoming 60th birthday. It was the…

{SQT} The Rush I Get From Costumes or Why The House Is A Dump The Entire Month of October

Technically, it’s called “Seven Quick Takes”; realistically it’s a slapped together mess of photos. The unifying theme is my obsession with hand crafting my children’s Halloween costumes. Despite the cursing, hair pulling and temper tantrums (all mine) the rush I get when the costumes are finally complete is stronger than heroin (I’m only guessing here,…

It’s The Sandy Pumpkin Charlie Brown!

We didn’t wake up Tuesday morning with the house situated on top of a witch so Mantoans 1, Sandy 0. We did however lose our pool and develop a new leak in the roof which puts the score at Mantoans 1, Sandy 2. I actually had to convince Tony to not go on the roof…

{SQT} Family Joys Of The Week

I really don’t have time to write today, but if I don’t link up with Jen, my week feels incomplete somehow. So here, jotted down between diapers, costumes and a burst radiator pipe on the van, are my deep reflections from the week. 1. Tony “accidentally”¬†left this article up on the browser for me to…

Being A Good Parent Requires Days Like This

Somehow, the most gorgeous day of fall just happened to coincide with the day we selected to go to the zoo. The weather even inspired me to suggest a side trip to the beach that was overwhelmingly accepted by everyone, with only mild coercion on my part. “Look Tony, we can tell the kids we’ll…

{SQT}Highlights Of A Slow Week

I’m attempting a Seven Quick Takes that’s actually quick for a change. Hang on for a bumpy ride. 1. Fulton’s new favorite word is “allergic” as in, “No, you can’t punish me! I’m allergic!!” 2. I wasted some time setting up a Zazzle shop so I can sell normal items with pictures of my weird…

The Changing Of The Seasons

Fall is finally here. The leaves are clogging the gutters, the chickens are attacking the cornstalks we’ve tied to the front porch and a few nights back we finally fired up the woodstove. Watching my daughter haul and stack firewood in a t-shirt, Crocs and ski gloves made me realize I could no longer postpone…

{SQT} Vanilla Ice, Ice Cream With My Birthday Cake

Yo VIP! Let’s kick it! 1. Wednesday, I turned 34. Thursday, my oldest turned 10. I celebrated by putting on my big girl britches and not crying on the phone with the nursing agency and Fulton’s insurance case manager. Who earned herself some pumpkin spice liquor? This gal! My efforts have earned me the hope…