mother's day video Q&A

in the spirit of mother's day this weekend, i partnered up with a really amazing jewelry company, musana, and got a chance to a have a conversation about motherhood (via video) with one of their artisans! the sole purpose of musana jewelry is to provide employment and training to ugandan women--making a way for independence and self respect and a more sustainable future for their families and communities.

i was so happy to get paired together with medina--she has such a sweet spirit about her! my question to her was about her experience as a working mama and artist...and her's to me was about education.

click through ("read more") to watch our video responses to each other.

p.s. max watched my video last night and kept pausing it to see my terrible faces. haha. i think 2:00 was his favorite. hmph!

musana jewelry mother's day Q&A from katie stratton on Vimeo.

do over

my goodness, the silence this week! some of it was spent with sweet and simple uninterrupted time with my family, while the rest was 7 days of stripey pajama pants and being on hold with mean insurance ladies...not all bad, but definitely nothing to write home about.

the truth is sometimes life has a way of sucking the air out of a week...and then a 7 month old comes in after that and refuses to go more than a hour and a half without nursing at night. and all that to say...i'm spent. but the beauty of a slow burn down is the preternatural ability to hold onto small hopes...relish in tiny victories...and cry like a big joyful crybaby at 5 in the morning after realizing you accidentally got 4 straight hours of sleep. it's the little things that keep us afloat, no?

so 3 cheers for bowlfuls of blueberries and paintings you could take with you into every room...3 cheers for stripey pajama pants and the afternoon sunshine and the way getting to be a mama to my max and bee makes it all worthwhile. 

and 3 cheers to a happy happy weekend, friends!
let's have a do over next week...

winter break

we've been laying low these past few days...celebrating the new year with dinner and friends at home...taking cat nap afternoons after sleepless teething baby nights...and soaking up every last bit of having both boys home for winter break. we're slowly getting back into the regular. i put christmas away yesterday and the house seems as bare as the trees outside. but there is something really spectacular in a blank canvas of a room...or how the new year brings new eyes to the place and something is bound to get painted or bangs might regrettably get cut. january does it to me every year!

this is my last week of my 20's. i turn 30 on wednesday and feel the itch to do something wild and reckless. pass the black hair dye and the open road, please! but more realistically, it has me in a state of reflection and dreaming. who does 30 year old katie want to be? what does she want to do and see? 

anyways, there's something really amazing about being on the cusp of a scary birthday. where it seems to light a fire under you all while quietly urging you into bed with a bakers dozen of donuts. it's a funny time...with beautiful weather and snowy trees and sweetest babies and happiest life.

just please don't let me cut bangs...

confessions of an advent slacker

first things first: my sweetest baby nephew is here! my sister amy had him early yesterday morning. they call him jude roman and he has the softest golden hair your fingers could ever touch. i'm so proud for them. this has been such a beautiful season for our family...

while amy was laboring away tuesday night, max and i waited not so patiently at home...cutting on paper and ironing bags for our advent calendar this year. i love the idea of this tradition of expectant waiting and preparation for christmas. although admittedly, i'm the worst at keeping these sorts of things going. i usually forget by day 11. (something max reminded me of repeatedly tuesday night..haha. he doubts my advent dedication...maybe i'm more of a paper chain kind of gal?)
 this time around i have my fingers crossed and a mini stash of sweets and toys and notes and envelopes stamped for the north pole ready! since max is gone every other weekend, i thought making these little numbered sacks (from oh happy day and designed by amanda!) this year would be perfect for hiding in his overnight bag...that way he doesn't miss out while he's away.

anyways, i guess regardless of if i'm successful and faithful to the advent this year or not...i'm all for the memory making. 
even if it is of the "mom got lazy/forgetful" variety.

let yourself be heard

ohio is an exciting place to be today!
i voted bright and early this morning while my family slept. max was so happy to see my sticker when he woke up. he's been so curious about the political process this year--asking loads of questions...watching the debates. we don't talk about where matt and i lean politically this year...not just yet. it's much more fun to see max make up his mind on his own...learning the process before partisanship!
he spent the morning trying to guess who i cast my ballet for-- "did you vote for a boy?"..."is he already president or does he have fancy hair?"

happy happy election day, friends!

the sweetness

this week has me desperately grasping for a small bit of balance. 
it's way too pretty outside...
i could go on and on, talking about the challenge of finding yourself at a impasse of pre-baby self and post-baby self...but for tonight i think i'll just let it be.

 i hope you all are having a wonderful week! 
leaves are falling every which way you look, my hands are stained with paint, and pumpkin ice cream abounds...

life is hectic and silly and sweet as can be...

warm cookies and cloud gazing

i cherish these quiet moments with my guy...baking up sweet things in the oven and finding elephants and sea horse and bikes floating by in the sky. the summer storms that have been rolling through lately have made for some really great cloud gazing. max can't stop asking for my camera to snap photos of them in all their various shapes and colors and ways of moving around. 
add cookies to the mix and there is pure bliss to be found...

tomorrow max is off for one last week away with his dad, then it's time to start planning for school!
 i can just smell the new school shoes and pencils and paper now...

mama bee

life is flying around here...i can hardly believe the month is almost through. 
phoebe is 3 weeks old today and i'm happy to say we're starting to develop a bit of a routine...a tiny tiny one which consists of nursing, nursing, cat nap sleeps, more nursing. it's been trying and exhausting and wonderful but doesn't make for very interesting blogging content (sorry for the long lapses in posts around here!)

it's a balancing act of soaking up this stage of her life, trying to not let is pass too quickly, (because it most certainly does) and day dreaming of more stable days...days of feeling 100%...of clothes fitting properly again, days with more rest and confidence and picking out wee baby halloween costumes.

it's a funny thing how babies have a way of making you ache and long for time to stand still and hurry up all at the same time. 

anyway, max is back home from another week with his dad...matt is back to work (ugh)...and i'm hoping to start up our summer again. swimming and ice cream cones and rainy afternoons painting barefoot by the window...all with a side of sweet baby smooching and a little more nursing.

for mama

yesterday was as special as can guys really did it up right!
max picked out clothes for him and matt to wear and surprised me when i got home from breakfast with my mom and sisters. there was a little more breakfast, peonies, and a beautiful new blanket and shams on my bed waiting on me.
the rest of the day was eating out and max opening and holding doors for me and lots of kisses and affirmations of how lucky and in love we all are with each other. 

it was a good day.
(although today i asked max to get something for me and he reminded me that mother's day was over. hmph! perhaps we overdid it yesterday....)

happy monday, friends!

a mother's note to her max

dear max, 
i've never known such happiness as i've known being your mama. you're just about as wild as can be and i'm loving every second of watching you grow up into a young man. you've made my life a real hoot...a healthy challenge...a joy and an honor having such a boy. and good golly, i can't wait to see what kind of big brother you're going to be! we're all pretty lucky to have each other, you know?

i love you 5x30, such sweet friend!  

and a happy happy mother's day weekend to all of you mamas and mamas to be one day and mama figures to somebody really is something to be celebrated! 

aside from some time spent with my guys, sunday i'm going to soak up as much as i can of my favorite mom's in all the own and my 3 big sisters. anything good i've done as max's mama has been because of those gals....