all nightmarish on the western front.

Parental leave has been hellacious, and I don’t say that lightly. This is the first significant (longer than a couple weeks) break I’ve had from either work or school since the late nineties, so to say I was looking forward to it would be an understatement. Here’s a birth story and some haphazardly gathered notes from the front… Continue reading


everything stays.

Wow, I’ve outdone even myself with this hiatus. A whole year! Goodness.

A very, very loose emoji-driven summary of what I’ve been up to since this time last year:

  • 🎉 After our tiny wedding in early March, I was focused on the big open house we were having to celebrate with our larger group of family and friends in May. Spent every spare minute getting all the plans and details together for that. It was a phenomenal time.

  • 😯 The next day (Mother’s Day, actually), I found out I was pregnant.
  • 🤢 Was pretty sick and / or exhausted for most of the late spring and summer, so I just went to work and survived as best I could.
  • 🦌 Went to Wheeling, WV for Matt’s family reunion in late July and stayed at a beautiful, chill resort amongst rolling hills and wildlife and gorgeous trees. This was the first week I felt mostly not-sick.
  • 🏖 For my birthday we spent the weekend in Va Beach, which is perfect in mid-September. A bouillabaisse was had, and lots of pumpkin custard.

  • ✅ I spent a several-day staycation reorganizing my closet and the rest of the household storage.
  • 🎃 Then it was time to get ready for Halloween, and a big Halloween party that Morella had been looking forward to throwing all year.
  • 🎄 And of course, after Halloween you’re thrown right into the the thick of the other holidays (this year we drove to Knoxville to visit with Matt’s family right before Christmas, and got to enjoy Dollywood too) and before you know it it’s the new year…

  • 👶🏻 And almost time for a new baby to arrive.

It was a beautiful year. An eventful, beautiful year.

I’m on parental leave right now so I’m typing this entry in fits and starts, and sometimes with one hand. It took the first five weeks of my leave just to get caught up on the past couple months of photo editing, which again, I mostly did with one hand while nursing or walking around with baby. It’s frustrating to be back in that space where just a few minutes of having both your hands available to use is a luxury. As a mom of a four-year-old, you forget to be grateful for the little luxuries that slowly reappear as your child grows. Consider my gratefulness renewed.

I’ll talk a little more next time about the blistering haze that is having a second child so far. ‘Til then! 👋