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  Posted: May 11, 2013 9:19 PM FEED
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User Image etst Posted: Nov 23, 2017 8:59 PM (UTC)
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etst 10h ago
Pie making helper. In the middle of all these holiday festivities we look forward to all year, there's always this moment of recognition: ....aaaaand, there it is. That weird sadness I can't really explain but sort of loiters outside of happy celebrations just enough for me to acknowledge it for a minute--the passing of time, nostalgia, missing family at home (they Facetime'd me in when they sang the doxology and I was all 😭). And so I give the sadness a little wave from the window and then go back to the food, the games, the conversation. Almost time to eat...❤️grateful for all of it.
User Image etst Posted: Nov 23, 2017 2:45 PM (UTC)
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etst 16h ago
Happy Thanksgiving and love from our family to yours today. 😘 ...and all the You've Got Mail fans replied with: ...
User Image etst Posted: Nov 23, 2017 1:08 AM (UTC)
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etst 1d ago
Tradition: first night of holiday jams the night before Thanksgiving in preparation for our neighbor Pajama Breakfast. Movie & s'mores tonight. I'm grateful for a hundred things but mostly right now, it's the sight of her sitting on those crossed little piggies. ❤️
User Image etst Posted: Nov 22, 2017 2:57 PM (UTC)
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etst 1d ago
To get my doctorate degree in Festive Studies, I had to spend a semester in the North Pole researching paper snowflake cuts under the master paper cutting expert elf whom the other elves referred to simply as "Shears." Passed on some of what I learned to the kids this morning...I still got it. Fun reminiscing. ❄️
User Image etst Posted: Nov 21, 2017 4:21 PM (UTC)
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etst 2d ago
Can't wait to do a little of this over the holiday weekend with movies and leftovers and cocoa and so many tiny marshmallows sipped off the top while they're still crunchy. ❤️ Need gift ideas for kids? There are three gift guides, inspired by each of my kids, over on the blog today. (And how sweet is the reader whose grandpa passed away and left a closet full of vintage wrapping paper, so she sent me 3 rolls?! 🎄❤️️)
User Image etst Posted: Nov 21, 2017 12:20 AM (UTC)
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etst 3d ago
Two words: Level 6. 🎄
User Image etst Posted: Nov 20, 2017 3:08 PM (UTC)
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etst 3d ago
Last week on Instagram Stories, I shared a mocktail recipe and a little motivation behind my commitment to being more aware of when and how much I drink. I couldn't believe the response--hundreds of direct messages sharing stories and a desire to talk more openly about this, especially with women. On the blog today, I'm talking about alcohol, habits and balance and hopefully creating an open place to talk about it without judgment. I want to drink responsibly on “regular” days to keep the other occasions special–summer-in-Michigan cocktails on the dock, first night of vacation toasts, Christmas Eve martinis. Link in profile.
User Image etst Posted: Nov 19, 2017 11:20 PM (UTC)
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etst 4d ago
Annual tradition, setting up our winter village, taking a version of this photo and feeling grateful for how the little faces in its glow have grown and changed over the years, but the wonder remains...smitten with the little joys that, added together, glue our whole world together. Something breaks every year--the church steeple last year, the carolers' heads this year. But we like it broken. This little village is a lot like us--a hot mess that can pull off kinda pretty when the lights are dimmed and our inside lights shine out. Only two school days this week, and we're barely even counting those. The excitement begins. ❤️
User Image etst Posted: Nov 19, 2017 4:16 PM (UTC)
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etst 4d ago
Hear ye, hear ye, finally an advent calendar I won't bomb out on. No more running out of treasures on Day 12 and shoving old barrettes in pockets to cover, or losing steam and convincing them "eat breakfast" is a special activity. I'm in love with this perfect little handmade {advent}ure calendar from my friend @digandco .
It comes with the hanging stick, all the adventure tags and my favorite--a complete list of hints for where to find their adventures and ideas for what those adventures could be--a stick & marshmallows for roasting, scissors & paper for making snowflakes, instructions for building a living room fort. Totally Doable! Use my festive little code KELLEHOHO at @digandco for free shipping on any order (so many beautiful handmade, purposeful gifts!) from now until December 1.
User Image etst Posted: Nov 18, 2017 8:49 PM (UTC)
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etst 5d ago
I spent a lot of time at school this past week--mainly Lainey's classroom--but the week ended at Dash's for the last of the preschool feasts for our family--where I cried, of course. I was talking to my sister this morning about this week, about my kids' teachers--how grateful I am for them and how I am seeing little lives being shaped and changed and know their teachers play a role in that. We started talking about our past teachers and naturally the conversation turned to my fourth grade teacher who I think about so often. Fourth grade was when my family was being flipped upside down, but in my classroom, my teacher made me believe things I'd never ever forget--that I was creative and that my creativity could make magic no matter what life threw at me. I felt so loved by her, and she saw something in me that I couldn't see in myself at the time. I have tried to find this teacher for years--Googled everything I knew about her (her last name changed after I left), dug through social media, managed to contact a school a few years ago where she worked, but my investigation failed. I tried again today--full blown stalker mode and actually paid money to get some records on a woman who had her maiden name, owned a house where I used to live and now lives in Indiana. $15 got me a mobile number, so I texted it: "Forgive me if this is the wrong phone number, but I'm looking for a former teacher of mine from years ago, and I got this number from some online research. I'm wondering if you taught at Randals Elementary years ago?" She texted back, "Could you give me your name please?" My heart was racing. "Formerly Kelle Cryderman." "Then I am happy to answer that question with a yes. It is I, Mrs. K. How are you, Kelle?" I was in the grocery store when I got the text, and I stood over my cart and cried.
I just got off a 45-minute phone call with her where I told her what she meant to me, the lessons that have stayed with me, how much she changed my life. We got all caught up, and I can't tell you how amazing it feels to have finally told this woman who helped me believe in myself what she did for me. To all the teachers out are making a difference that lasts.
User Image etst Posted: Nov 17, 2017 9:16 PM (UTC)
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etst 6d ago
Are you a get-dressed-up-in-holiday-best kinda person for Thanksgiving or a stay-comfy-and-cozy-for-pie kinda gal? Brett's family coined the phrase "flannel down" for gettin' cozy, and I love it. Both our sweaters here are @thredup--the biggest and most amazing online consignment shop--the first 100 people to use code KELLE40 will get an extra 40% off their first order! (Applies to new US customers only. Redeemable online only. Certain restrictions apply). I'm a dress up for dinner, flannel down for dessert girl. ❤️
User Image etst Posted: Nov 16, 2017 3:23 PM (UTC)
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etst 1w ago
One of my favorite holiday memories last year involved completing a puzzle with Lainey at the top of the John Hancock Building, drinking hot cocoa and overlooking the snowy city. We're going again this year, and Lainey already asked if we could do that again. Which of course prompted me on a Christmas puzzle search (if you give a mouse a cookie). Over on the blog today--favorite holiday puzzles (I have major anti-frustration rules for puzzles), Christmas activity books for kids (entertain them at the Thanksgiving kids' table) and some newly published holiday books for the littles (even if they're getting big). This Thanksgiving in the Woods one--swoon. New life goals: host a Thanksgiving dinner in the woods at night...with twinkle lights. Link in profile.
User Image etst Posted: Nov 16, 2017 12:23 AM (UTC)
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etst 1w ago
Of course it is every photographer's goal to pull out a camera seamlessly and capture moments without anyone noticing you're there, but you need to know that when I was taking Latte outside and saw this scene through the window, I ran so fast to get my camera that I tripped over a pair of shoes, banged up my knee and basically saw God. Oh hey, nothing to see here. Just being stealthy, carry on. (Also FYI: we've reached Level 2).
User Image etst Posted: Nov 15, 2017 12:32 PM (UTC)
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etst 1w ago
It hit me last night that this week's preschool Thanksgiving feast will be the last of many for our family--the last of the construction paper pilgrim hats and rhyming pre-feast prayers. And just when I thought he was bigger than my sentimental heart would like to keep him, he woke up early while I was working this morning, climbed next to me on the couch and fell back asleep with his little hand held out to hold mine. I feel like Motherhood is one compromising yoga position...stretching me until it hurts but knowingly making me stronger, more flexible, more aware of perfect still moments like these.
User Image etst Posted: Nov 14, 2017 12:48 PM (UTC)
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etst 1w ago
After many years of studying Christmas music, I'm ready to defend my thesis and accept my degree in Festive Holiday Tunes. Move over NASA scientist, there's a new intellectual in town...and she's wearing a glitter Nutcracker vest. That said, on the blog today is THE EPIC HOLIDAY PLAYLIST. You know I don't post these things lightly. It's backed with research and polling and many years of emotions. And for those who don't like your holiday eggs touching your holiday waffles, I also categorized lists into Old School (Nat! Bing!), Christmas Jazz & Piano (Krall! Connick!), Indie Christmas (it's so good!), a list for kid favorites (with story readings for bedtime) and a Contemporary Christmas list if you promise me you'll only let it take up 5% of the holiday food pyramid. Save your calories for the classics. Link in profile, my festive little elves.
User Image etst Posted: Nov 13, 2017 11:14 PM (UTC)
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etst 1w ago
First year we've hung mistletoe (if you count a felt reproduction). 😊 Latte was the first smooch. It's at our front entrance, so this ought to be fun.
User Image etst Posted: Nov 13, 2017 9:00 PM (UTC)
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etst 1w ago
Level 1 of Christmastizing the home was completed this past weekend. For the record, there are ten levels.
User Image etst Posted: Nov 12, 2017 2:29 PM (UTC)
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etst 1w ago
She was in the middle of a serious Selena Gomez dance fest, attempting to whip her hair back and forth when Brett said, "Hang on, I have an idea," ran to the garage and returned with his leaf blower. She could not stop smiling. ❤️
User Image etst Posted: Nov 11, 2017 10:27 PM (UTC)
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etst 1w ago
The decorating started today, always in my favorite place to begin--my kids' rooms. Warm little wonderlands for sugar plum dreams. The older my kids grow and the closer they get to setting sail in the great life seas on their own, the more passionate I get about making their home anchor as cozy and loving and encouraging as possible--so that when the storms come when they're out there alone, they have a solid grounding place to go to in their minds that reminds them of peace and love and security...home.
User Image etst Posted: Nov 11, 2017 2:59 PM (UTC)
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etst 1w ago
Took some pics this morning to switch out her bedroom art with something fun for the holidays, and she frickin' nails it on the first click of the camera. "Happy Holidays, thank you for flying Pan Am. We'll be passing out peppermint lollipops once we reach cruising altitude."