2019 · Family · Memories

How do you hold on to memories?

I have a terrible memory. It’s funny, for some things, I can remember clear as day, stupid details like the specific outfit I was wearing on a day that barely matters. Other times, I desperately try to remember all the details of my wedding day as it fades further and further away every year.Ā  That’s why one of my big goals for 2019 is to be a better memory keeper. My goal is to catch up on creating photo books, organize all my digital photos so they are together in one place and labeled by folder, and maybe most importantly, start collecting memories from both sets of grandparents so that I can pass these memories on to Dashel and Sailor, even when my memory fails me.

Over the Christmas dinner table, while we all gorged on stuffed shells, my mom and I started talking about all the old photos she had in her basement that she wanted to go through. We started reminiscing and it made me think, God, I want to get this all down! So I forged a plan for 2019 that included periodic emails to my mom and dad, and to Steve’s parents with writing prompts for them to recall special memories in their own words. My plan will be to archive all these emails throughout the year and then be able to make a book of stories and memories as a keepsake.

In addition, while I was Christmas shopping, I came across this book of letters,Ā  while it’s certainly a great idea for a gift, you really have to know your parents. Are they the kind of people that will sit down on their own time and write a long letter independently, without any prompting, and place it in the envelope, and remember to give it to you? No? Maybe your mom is like mine? Like, maybe, you asked her to write a letter to your son for his second birthday and she didn’t finish it until his third birthday and she still hasn’t printed it out to give to you- and he’s turning 4 in March… šŸ˜‰ I love you, Mom. Needless to say, as adorable as this book of letters is, it’s not our family’s bag… so instead I’m going with the email approach. Although, what I did like about the book of letters is that it included some prompts that weren’t necessarily all about recalling memories. Some of the prompts were to write about their hopes and dreams for their grandchildren for the future, and what the best piece of advice anyone ever gave them was. I loved these additions and will probably add them to the emails as well.

My first prompt went out this week, and it was “Tell me about how you met Mom/ Dad.” The responses were great. They made me smile to myself as I heard my parent’s voices in my head speaking the words. They were also very in tune with who my parents are as people, my mom’s was short and sweet, and a little fuzzy on the details. My dad waxed poetic and set the scene by mentioning signs of the times like Vietnam and hippies being the back drop of their first encounter. The other cool thing that happened was that is sparked a fun conversation between my folks while they reminisced together after writing their emails. And isn’t that what it’s all about after all, sharing our memories with our family to feel more connected- that’s my hope for the future anyway.

(I’ve also decided it would probably be a good idea to answer the prompts myself, and maybe have Steve write about them too so we can keep track of our memories and add them for Dash and Sai too.)Ā  The above photos are two of my favorite of my mom and dad. Look how happy and in love they look, and how well rested! These were obviously taken before they had my sisters and I….

Family · Gift Guide · Motherhood · Parenting · Planning · Snail Mail

Thank you notes!

Dashel recently turned 3, (holy cow! How is my baby 3?!) and we were lucky enough to be surrounded by many friends and family- who, of course- showered him with toys and gifts. We ended up opening presents the next morning in our living room after the hub-bub of the party and birthday festivities died down. This was so fun because Dash got to relive the fun of his party the next day- which also takes the post birthday sting out of the day after a bit! As he opened- we snapped pictures of each gift (and also kept notes about who gave what). I one hour photo-ed that goodness and jotted my thank you notes right on the back of each pic. Easy peasy- and so cute that each friend/family member gets to see the excited look on Dash’s face when he received their gift! Such a fun, easy way to send a thank you!

Family · Spouse

4 Years!

Steve and I just celebrated our 4 year wedding anniversary! It’s so crazy amazing to look back and reflect on your time together as a married couple over the years- and an anniversary is the perfect time to do so. Even though it’s only been 4 years since we were married, we’ve had 2 babies, so it’s been busy! And it’s funny to think about how we’ve changed, how our lives have changed, and reminisce about how we first met, when we started dating, and our wedding day. Sometimes we can’t believe it’s been 4 years already, because it went by so fast, yet, at the same time, we can’t believe it’s only been 4 years, because we feel like we’ve known each other forever and it’s crazy to think about a time when we weren’t together… it’s funny how time works that way… the one thing I do know for sure, is how lucky I am, and how- even she I don’t think it’s possible- I love this man more and more with every passing day. ā¤ļø

Family · Motherhood · Parenting · Travel

Kaszanek family vacation part two: the flight!

Arriving at the airport! Ready to go!

So we actually did it ,and have lived to tell the tale! We flew with 2 littles from Boston to Savannah, and actually, it wasn’t that bad!!

I attribute most of the success to snacks, pacifiers, bottles/pouches, naps, and felt books that included little pieces to play with! Here are some photos from our travels!

Dash tagging our bags!

The dreaded weigh in, yes, it was more than 50lbs… šŸ™ˆ

Checking the instruments, getting ready for take off šŸ˜‚

Dash’s first view of a plane (plus a funny photo bomb of a guy that was struggling with something…)



Enjoying the flight ā¤ļø

…and how I got to end my night…

Yay for vacation!
Family · Motherhood · Parenting · Travel

Kaszanek family Vacation: Part One

Definitely the sign of a successful day! We drove up to my in laws house today to spend the night so they can drive us to the airport in the morning. This plan works out so perfectly for us because we are leaving our dog here- which means no boarding, yay!- and we don’t have to worry about long term parking, etc. and are hoping to do curbside check in with our bags… if you’ve been following the blog for the last few days, you know I’m a tad nervous about flying with two littles and I’m hoping this process goes as smoothly as possible! (I will keep you updated on how it goes and share my own tips soon!) 

We had about a 3 hour car ride driving up here, which went mainly well- kiddos were in pretty good spirits for the majority of the ride, and then we were able to celebrate with all of Steve’s family- aunts, uncles, and cousins, that couldn’t make it to Sailor’s bday party the other day. We had a great little pizza party, and Sailor got sung to again- she was in all her glory šŸ˜! 

This picture was snapped on the way up to bed after Dash stayed up waaaay past his bedtime… Of course when you’re staying with grandparents, the kids get a little spoiled- which is great! At Steve’s parents house, it’s lovingly called “anything you want day” – which sounds pretty awesome… 

We leave in the am for the airport! (As Dash would say, to go up in the sky!) I’ll keep you posted on our (mis)adventures ā¤ļø

BEST WEEK EVER! · Family · Motherhood · Parenting

Best Week Ever!

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This week was the Best Week Ever! July 3-July 9th, 2017!

Sailor turned ONE and we had a killer bday party for our baby girl!

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Birthday fruit!

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Our new toddler trampoline is definitely a hit!

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The birthday girl!

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Fantastic mail day…

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This adorableness…

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Keep up the good work Breyer’s! (#normalizeveganism)

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Dash was so proud of himself for doing this puzzle! (With a little help from us, but not a ton!)

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Birthday parties with toddlers šŸ™‚

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Making a cow mask- let the ‘Moo’ing ensue!

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Plus…

Are you watching The Nineties on CNN? So good! 

I love this bralette for layering summer wear

Without a doubt, one of the coolest small makers I’ve seen- I’m obsessed, I want everything.

Especially these.

Cute Organization! (Do you do any of these already? I’m personally mood board obsessed.

LOVE this color guide to Palm Springs & Joshua Tree

This transformation!  And the scarf wall hanging! 

Counting down the days!! 

And some eye candy- these photos!

 

 

 

 

 

 

Entertaining · Family · Motherhood · summer vibes · Uncategorized

Sailor’s first birthday!

We threw Sailor her first birthday party today!! I can’t believe my baby is one already! She started saying the word ‘up’ and took a couple of steps on her own! I think she’s gonna be walking and talking more and more- and we can’t wait! Here’s some quick pics from our fun today! 

Yes, I do love vegan chocolate cupcakes.

The first time I’ve seen Dash dig into a cupcake!


We did a unicorn and rainbow theme- Which was almost too fun and adorable! 


My rainbow fruit platter was a major hit.


A ball pit is always a good idea!


I love my new puppy!

Party = success! Thanks for celebrating our special day!

Family · Motherhood · Organizing · Parenting · Planning · summer vibes · Travel

Getting ready for Summer Vacation!

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Are you going away on vacation this summer? We leave for South Carolina in a week and I’m equal parts excited and overwhelmed! The idea of packing for a family of four- yes, I will probably micromanage my husband’s luggage as well, and flying with 2 little ones- ages one and two, is definitely a little bananas. (Especially since we also have Sailor’s first birthday party on Saturday and I have a to- do list a mile long before leave.. eeek)

We will be heading down to Hilton Head for two weeks with my parents- which will definitely be a huge help, AND Steve and I are going to escape to Charleston, SC for a night to celebrate our 4 year wedding anniversary! This is where we just booked our night away! (I’m dying!)

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The Mills House
So, I’ve basically been reading all about tips to travel with kids, since we’ve never flown with them before. And also reading up on all the best of Charleston. (I grew up vacationing in Hilton Head, so I’m pretty prepped for that area already, and besides, we’re all just really excited about the pool and straight chillin..)

Here’s a round-up of some of the tips I’ve been scouting:

Traveling with kiddos!

Rough Guides tips for traveling with children 

15 must know tips for traveling with kids (from Babble)

Flying with Kids from Parenting  and their ultimate guide to traveling with kids (this includes car trips and flying!)

The Guardian’s top 50 tips for traveling with littles

Love these tips from Wired!

and of course, our getaway!

A Beautiful Mess’ guide to Charleston 

Southern Living’s Guide to Charleston

Spending 2 perfect days in Charleston

The cool girl’s guide to Charleston

and all the vegan friendly restaurants in Charleston!

 

 

 

 

Family · summer vibes

Happy 4th of July!Ā 

Happy 4th of July! I hope you got to spend some time today with your family, friends and/or people you love! (Whether you were celebrating in America or not!) 

One of my fav things to eat on the fourth, or really all summer long is corn on the cob! 


How do you eat your corn? I eat mine round and round! Apparently, how you eat your corn says something about your personality- if you eat your corn round and round, you tend to be more artsy and creative, the right brained people- if you eat  your corn left to right, like a typewriter, you are an orderly organized person! How interesting, right?! (My mom and I eat in the round and Steve and my Dad eat left to right!) 

Happy Birthday America! 

Family · Gift Guide · Motherhood · Parenting

An (incredibly) meaningful gift for your child

Our kiddos just finished their (first for Sailor and second for Dashel) year of daycare. I can’t believe how fast their (school) year went… and I can’t help but be so grateful for the daycare they attend. As a working mom, it’s hard to leave your kiddos for the day- there’s a lot of missing them, and sometimes, early on, some guilt, about not being able to stay home with them. But honestly, I couldn’t love their daycare more. The teachers and staff are thoughtful, sweet, and engaging. Everything is always safe and clean, and my kids are learning so much, including sharing, manners, their letters/colors/numbers, even Spanish! It’s a long road of school ahead of them, and I’m glad that this is the start of their student careers….

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With the end of the school year here, and summer swinging in, I got to thinking a lot about graduations, moving on and growing up. (My kiddos will be in new rooms with new teachers when they come back in the fall!) Although their high school graduation seems like eons away (…and the thought of it seriously starts to bring tears to my eyes…) I started a graduation gift for each of them to give them on the day they finish their high school careers. (Hold on to your hats, this is a gift in the making, that takes quite a while…) I purchased two books, a different one for each of them, and had their teacher’s write personalized notes (with the dates) in each book. I plan on getting every teacher to write a note to them for each of their school years; they will be able to go back and see what their teacher’s thought of them from the time they were 6 months old to the time they were 18. (I’ve already read some of the notes and they are so sweet!!)

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Of course “Oh the Places You’ll Go” by Dr. Suess is a timeless classic that many people give as graduation gifts, but if you want to branch out, here are the two I chose. (They have the sweetest stories/messages). Do you have a long term gift for your child?

The Wonderful Things You Will Be
I Wish You More