road trip chicago

we hit the road thursday for a quick trip to chicago with the little ones. this was our first time traveling as a family of 4 and it was everything i dreamed it would be...or not so much! there was a lot of sass and grump and rain and late night throwing up followed by a bit of 5:30 a.m wake up let's play already...from both kids. hmph! but isn't that what family vacations are all about?

despite it all we had a real time...strolling around the city, doing a bit of shopping, visiting the aquarium and sharing banana pudding next to the beluga whales. we ate good food at rootstock every night and i had the most amazing bath of my life in our little hotel room at PUBLIC. unlimited hot water does wonders for the soul.

i've had such an ache for a change of scenery lately...i think this did the trick. rainy misty chicago is really something beautiful. even if we did all come home with colds.

chicago in a day

our trip to chicago treated us mighty fine last week, even if we were only in town for a day! 
max has seen all different parts of the city but we had never taken him to the navy pier to eat sweets and watch sail boats and ooh and ahh at the skyline behind us. and so that's what we did!
oh how he loved it...with all the people watching and "beach birds" and tallest tall buildings all around. we rode up in the ferris wheel and squealed at how lucky we were to have such beautiful weather and such a fantastic view. we walked and walked and legoland-ed and ate way too much mcdonalds. it was a true vacation.
and such a treat to get to pack up the car and be with my guys on a quick adventure...seeing sights and smelling different air. it was just what i needed.

awake my soul

good morning! happy monday!
we made it back from chicago and had a real fine time. max is always a funny guy to go on a road trip much singing and dancing to bad music and odd conversation. i've always been fond of spending time adventuring with him...even if he does turn into a backseat driver or spells and reads signs aloud like a little old man the entire 5 hour trip. 

today we're back into the swing of things. our family is all home and accounted for!
i've been sketching out and planning halloween costumes all morning instead of working and don't feel a bit bad about it! ...maybe a little.
regardless, the sun is out and leaves are falling and life is good. oh so good.

sway me like the sea

happy friday, loves!
we're currently on the road on our way to cape hatteras. it's been years and years since i've been able to take max on such a trip. i think getting to visit the ocean seems like the kindest way to say goodbye to our summer. and i'm planning on soaking up every last bit.
one of my favorite things about road trips is the music (and we'll need lots of it for this long long trip). 
i made a little mix tape for the ode to warm sunshine and the sea and sweet sweet summer. 
 ...something to hum to myself while max is burying me in the sand.

take good care of yourselves while i'm gone!
i'm going to try and gather enough seashells and souvenirs for every last one of us! and i've lined up a real special group of ladies to fill in for me while we're away...all dishing on the best parts of their summer.
please make them feel at home...spread the welcome mat!
 have a wonderful weekend, everyone!
be back in about a week or so...
north carolina or bust!

the fishing hole

it's been a tradition for matt's mama's family to travel north to hillman, michigan to fish at fletcher's pond once a year. they've been doing it for decades now...starting when his mama was a little girl. this was me and max's first year going...and our very first fishing trip ever.
i was a little bit nervous, not knowing what kind of fisherman i would be. but the week turned out to be so much more than was seeing sunrises and sunsets, family dinners around the table, evening hammock naps by the water, getting dirty without a care, watching my little guy gain a whole new confidence and sense of self. but more than anything it was about being together. totally present with one another.
i could go for another week of that soon soon soon.
matt and his twin brother todd were the best fishing and max were real pros by the end of the week. or anyways, we had a wonderful time. even if we did catch more weeds than fish.
this is my northern pike! my very first catch.
i was going to name it and give it a back story until i finished reeling it in...and realized that pike don't like names. or back stories. they only like having scary teeth and squealing the worst sounding squeals and violently flopping about.
(and yes, that is a complete over-exaggeration...but this is my one and only big fish
the incredible mr. limpet (i named him anyways) was too small to be a keeper so we kindly threw him back...back to live at coney island and help win WWII.
don knotts would surely not approve.

it was a beautiful trip...northern michigan is really something!
the stars are bigger than any i've ever seen before.
and the world gained a couple of new fisherman...

p.s. max wanted to tell you all a little bit about his trip!

from mr. max...dictated but not read.
matt teached me how to cast his pole. and i did learn how to cast his pole. when i went on the boat on my last day i caught a bass. and me and matt and todd and me and my mom we were so excited that i caught my first bass! and my mom caught a northern pike. and matt caught two bass. and i missed the place that i spent the day with. i can't wait to go there again next year. and i hope everybody that's already living there has a great time.


let's go away for a while

we got back home from our trip up north to shoot a wedding early sunday morning, but not before stopping for gas and a mini date somewhere between michigan and ohio.
i don't do weddings very often...only when asked...and who can refuse a wedding? haha
but this was my first with matt helping and boy oh boy did he do a fine job. i somehow suckered him into being my 2nd shooter with no promise of compensation besides my company. 
he's good to me like that.
and i love how regardless of the long trip and full day of picture taking, with an even longer-seeming trip back home, there is always time for a coffee date with my guy.

happy may, sweet friends!
it's forever raining here, which is starting to make this gal antsy. 
i've got a garden to plant!
but i guess it's nothing a little trash bag rain poncho can't fix.

daffodil spring

happy weekend!
matt and i are taking a small road trip tomorrow for work..i've been spending the morning sitting in the sunny spots of the house and listening to good music to take along with us...devoting way too much time thinking about the royal wedding.
pokey lafarge and the south city three- daffodil blues

now if i could only muster up the energy to go clean out my car...

kings of the road

 we made it home safely from our extreme spring break and are still spinning from the time we had!
although, being on the road with my two friends might just have been the highlight.
i love traveling with matt because he has zero road rage...and in moments when most would be giving gestures or pounding on the steering wheel he will make these funny little calm observations...("they're not using their turn signals...the whole lot of them") tickles me to no end.
we opted to not bring along any technology for max and traveled like days of old...with family sing a longs and snacks from home and a million rounds of the alphabet game.
max was a real trooper. he was inspired by the open road and decided to write and sing a spring break theme song...then boredom set in and he found a pair of safety scissors and gave his stuffed dog a hair cut, causing blue fuzz to fly and cover the car.
he only asked if we were there yet 40 times and was convinced that matt was driving in the wrong direction the majority of the trip. he has a sixth sense about these sorts of things.
chicago was amazing. and of course i took way too many photos...
i'll be back tomorrow with pictures and tales of white-knuckle cab rides, adventures 1,353 feet in the sky, and the city's best macaroni and cheese.

bloomington....or...the hunt for john cougar mellencamp

an hour before matt and i were supposed to leave for our weekend away, we still had no clue where we were going. desperation, and no clear direction, led us to strips of paper and a feathered fedora. little towns in west virginia and pennsylvania and indiana and michigan were all tossed in together, out popped bloomington (the home of indiana university and john mellancamp), and we were on the road.
(that hat has yet to do me wrong, except for when i try to wear it)

we set out, the two of us, with no technology...only paper maps and local radio.
20 minutes into the drive the radio was off and i was soaking up matt's tales of selling men's perfume and time shares in his early 20's. i think that's what i love most about road trips; being trapped in the car with someone brings out the chance for real conversation and juicy past-life gossip.
that, and traveling through indiana will lead you to funny gentlemen bookstores in trailers and truck stop omelet/indian food restaurants.
 bloomington was great. 
the weather was flirting with spring, so we walked and walked and walked. we ate interesting foods and sifted through some pretty amazing vintage stores (one had a working 1920's peep show booth for a quarter and taxidermy animals lining the tops of bookshelves). we made each other paper napkin valentines over coffee, spent $30 at the candy store with little remorse, took in the local art, jaywalked, and slow danced on the sidewalk to elevator music. there's something really wonderful about the anonymity that a new town gives you...and bloomington was the perfect hideout.
this trip was a risky venture for the planning kind of girl that i am. but it truly paid off.
it's an easy and laid back weekend when you fly by the wind. and really that's just what i needed. even if we were only a couple hours from home.
but in all honesty, i would travel to the backyard with this guy if it meant that i got spend the day with him.

nothing but big ol' hearts dancing in our eyes

 i've been plotting and scheming and valentining around here...and no one is safe!
there is something about rolls of candy-colored ribbon and bits and trims of paper that make my heart thump thump thump.
my body has been gravitating toward the sunshiny corners of the house these days, like a little lazy house pet.
although, i prefer a side of productiveness with my morning sun. i've been hauling my crafting goodies around, tailing the sun from room to room.

we've got our weekend trip destination narrowed down to a few choices (thank you so much for the help...west virginia is looking pretty promising!).
it may come down to towns written on strips of paper and tossed into a hat tonight. wherever the wind takes us, i'm just looking forward to getting to hold matt's hand for a few hours and seeing ohio from the rear view mirror. just for a bit.

although, our fool-proof  back up plan is seeing jerry seinfield and the hot dog bun museum in toledo. so...
win. win.

...or bust!

today is a wrinkled skirt//no makeup day.
an "A" for effort kind of day...when even getting up on time leaves you feeling fully accomplished for the day.
i think it's these snowy mornings making it hard to escape my warm bed.
 i'm a winter gal, but my fingers are all a'itch to hit the road...see something new...breathe a little different air.
me and my fella are planning a quick road trip this weekend while max is away adventuring with his dad. 
we have no idea where we're going...but have laid down a few ground rules.
1. 6 hours or less from home (dayton)
2. someplace neither of us have ever been before (which is difficult because matt is a seasoned traveler)
3. somewhere odd or interesting
any ideas?