Child Care

Minted Strawberries for a Birthday Brunch


  Sweet little Evie celebrated her birthday a couple weeks ago. Summer birthdays are the best – warm sunshine, windows open, cute little dresses.  I was born in January…in Chicago…and 30+ years later I still hate the winter! So, I love celebrating Evie’s special day during the warmer season. My parents came over for a [...]

Green Kid Crafts Review


As I’ve mentioned here before, I am not a particularly crafty person.  While I enjoy doing most things on my own, projects with the kids are usually quite simple but satisfying.  On grey afternoons we keep busy with tools from our craft tower and whatever can be re-purposed from around the house. So, when I [...]

Fun at the Beach?

7-7-13 beach3

One of the best parts about living in Chicago is access to beautiful Lake Michigan. There are days when its color matches the Caribbean, and the lake is so vast that one could easily mistake it for an ocean.  Plus, I think the world’s best tasting drinking water comes from the Lake via our kitchen [...]

Cloth Diapers Are For Everyone + GIVEAWAY!


My baby sister Colleen is almost a mother!  She is due with her first little man in a few weeks, and we are all so excited for his arrival.  He will be my parents’ EIGHTH grandchild in five years – my sisters and I have been busy – ha! Colleen is an ambitious city girl [...]

Morning Exercise


As I’ve written about before, I work-out a lot. At least five mornings a week I’m at my fitness studio for an intense 60 minute class with cardio and weight-lifting intervals.  I love the natural high that follows a hard-core work-out! Chris is borderline obsessed with his Cross-Fit work-outs.  He also goes at least five [...]

Thank You, Firefighters!!


The news out of Arizona this week is so sad.  So, so sad.  Nineteen firefighters tragically died when a wildfire they were battling grew out of control.  They leave behind wives and children and parents and siblings. Some left behind pregnant wives. I am haunted by these deaths.  These firefighters (all firefighters, really) were some [...]

The Best $12 I’ll Spend All Summer


My sister Caitie recently hosted a super fun birthday party at her house for her son Danny. Despite a bounce house, cupcakes, toys galore and kids everywhere, little Vivian spent the entire party playing at a water table.  It was filled with little rubber duckies that kept her laughing, and by the end of the [...]

Welcome to America!


My cousin Monika from Poland arrived in Chicago earlier this month.  She is spending the summer here – helping my sister and me out with our kids and getting a taste of American life.  Her English is excellent and her zest for life is infectious. We are so happy to have her here! My mom [...]

Healthy/Not Healthy


Mack is an enigma to me. He is a newly 3 rambunctious and energetic boy, and he functions at top speed ALL THE TIME.  At his age, I was happy to spend every afternoon playing My Little Ponies with my three sisters, so having a young fella of my own is still new to me.  [...]

Good Clean Dirt


I don’t want to jinx it, but it seems like summer has (finally) settled upon our fair city. Sun shining, farmers’ markets open, sidewalk seating at every cafe. If only it was like this year ’round…! Even though we live in a big city, I still want my kids to feel a strong connection to [...]

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