Friday, October 25, 2013

Fall, Life and Stuff

I'm writing this post on my high schooler's desk. He doesn't know it, but he has the best view in the house and I love a desk with a view. (Yes, I did have to clean off the Subway sandwich,  Slurpee cups and candy wrappers first, but let's not let reality enter into this!)

I bought him this vase for his pens. Cute isn't it?

Summer finally seems to be taking it's leave and fall has fully descended upon us here in Northern California. On my walk, I noticed so many brightly colored trees, some are already losing their leaves, and it is just gorgeous right now! California may not have the autumn display that Vermont does, but we have a pretty good one.

The birds are having a heyday with the riot of berries in the bushes and trees around here. They are going bonkers and it's fun to watch the show. It's become very cool and wet in the mornings and finally I am ready to bring out my boots, fleece and down items. Goodbye flip-flops. Though I guess they are never really gone here in California. Just at the bottom of the shoe basket for a while...

The heralding of fall gets me thinking of the passage of time. How could this year be nearing a close so soon? What do you mean Thanksgiving is around the corner?  Christmas I can't really wrap my head around yet, but I do have a little bit of excitement when I think of Christmas songs and decorating the tree..

That said, it also means the birthdays of my two boys are coming in a few weeks. Each school year becomes busier than the last. Days are flying by and I just want to make it all slow down. I want more family time. The nights of reading to them are over. Some nights we can get a game night in if homework doesn't intrude. Weekend trips are even trickier with the homework and it seems everyone want to hang with their friends. I get it. You mean you don't want to be with us 24/7?? Lol. Does anyone else feel this way?

There's a lot of this going on when the fire's on.  I also keep hearing from this one, "Mom, stop harshing my mellow." Right!

My days also feel so chunked up. I accomplish so little! Like right now I should be putting the next load in the washer, but I'm writing and pondering what's on our plate after-school. I'm wondering what I need to get from the grocery that I'm missing from tonight's dinner...Also tomorrow's lunch boxes. They've already eaten what I've bought for the week.

On a quick side trip to the store yesterday I remembered that Grif, my youngest needed socks that, "Slide on easily mom and my pajamas are too short." Done. No memory loss on that trip.

Only to get a comment last night from the eldest, Jackson that, "My socks are all too tight mom." I thought he was flush with socks..Grrr.

Yesterday, as I was about to run out and get groceries the call comes, "Mom we played soccer in P.E. today and the grass was all wet. My shoes and socks are soaked. Can you bring me dry ones?" There goes another 45 minutes.

 Happy to greet the high-schooler mid-afternoon I get, "Mom, I need a laptop. All the high-schoolers have one." My response if you need one you will have to save for it yourself. (He has a fairly new and very nice desk top one.) The response, "Mom is it really fair to ask me to pay for school supplies?" Nice try.

Then this morning from the 6th grader, "Mom I've decided I no longer want to play cello. I'm switching to flute to be with my friends. Yes, I know I said I wanted to do bass last week, but I really mean it. Can we go look at flutes today? Oh and I need blood for my Halloween costume asap."

Ten minutes before the Boy Scout meeting Monday night, "Mom my Scout pants are too short and need hemming and can you add 4 patches too? The last patches you put on are falling off." Hmm, I never did master sewing.

"Mom, can you buy some GOOD food for once?" In others words, he means junk food. This from the high schooler of course. Note to self, when getting a few token processed items, buy guinea pig food and another large container of Calm while I'm out!

Yes, they are working me. Total hustlers. It's a mom's job to put the kibash on a large percentage of these things. It's also my job to make a loving, cozy home and though most of the time I enjoy it, I get worn down.  I try to remind myself in a few short years one will already be away at school, and the other also not long after. I've got to savor all the adversity. I know I'll have much more time then to do all the things I don't have much time for now. Those are on the back-burner while I make those guys my priority. (Reader, I have a blogger girl's night away in November. I can't wait!)

Despite the chaos, last weekend we whisked the eldest away minutes after finishing his PSAT and the four of us made a road trip to my brother's in El Dorado Hills, near Sacramento. That's a beautiful area near California's Gold Country. They also have a famous area called Apple Hill to buy apples, crafts and have picnics. The weather was so gorgeous.

I couldn't stop snapping photos. The light and the farms were just too pretty.

This area is amazingly beautiful and the sweet scent of apples wafts through the air. There are over 50 farms along with bakeries, wineries and even a brewery on the beautiful winding road that goes through here. Apple Hill is a must do if you get up to this area of California!

I love warm fall days and being outside in the softer sunlight. I am also savoring the quality time with the boys as it is happening less and less. The highlight of this trip for them I think, was being with their cousins. Cousins are the most special friends you can have and I wish they had more time to be together.

We also had a good time watching my brother fly his hovercraft. They are fortunate to live in an area with a gorgeous view facing towards the Sierras and a backyard that is open space.

It's perfect for remote control planes, or RC, if you know this stuff. My brother has a side business selling the parts and things and he is doing very well. Apparently this is pretty popular stuff. Boys love it of course...

I got some quality girl time with my sweet sister-in-law, Line.

And my favorite niece, Veronica!

Also, this week I made a lovely discovery, this book, "Fall in Love for Life," by Barbara, "Cutie' Cooper.

Written by a 90 something grandmother, it's a smart and inspirational guide to married life and more. Cutie, as she is called, tells it like it is, while we experience her lifetime-the hard times and good. She doesn't sweat the small stuff and inspires you to value what matters. I bought my copy at Anthropolgie. She has her own blog, The-OGs- so fun! You can even follow this 96 year old on Twitter! Today she tweeted that it was cold and your grandma says bundle up. I love it!


Speaking of lovely, I also found another blog dedicated to Northern California that you will drool over if you love this area and great photos. California Coastin is the blog of Tiffany Ingram, an amazing young woman who is a fantastic photographer. She really has captured some of my very favorite spots in California on her site. Seriously a treat to visit her gorgeous blog!


 This blog has been a bit slower coming, but I'm ramping up and I'll be back with a decorating post very soon. I just realized I never wrote the final trip post about Germany! Yikes. That's in the can as well..Thanks so much to all you long-time readers and all the new friends too! I know that some of you are getting the new post emails on Bloglovin' and it would be lovely if you follow me on Facebook where I post more frequently and there are always links to latest blog!

Now I'm off to stare out the window a bit and watch those birds!

Wishing a beautiful fall weekend to you all!


P.S. So excited Uniqlo (it's supposed to be the Japanese Gap), is opening tomorrow at Valley Fair nearby here and I plan on getting over there to get a fleece and one of their gorgeous down puffers for $49. Have you heard of this store or shop there? I cannot wait to check it out!


  1. gorgeous pics Kim! Yes even when things get tough and a little stressy - we have to remember that we will laugh about these episodes in years to come so best to smile about them now. I didn't know you got such a change of leaves in NORCAL! Geez - it is the best of all worlds over there...xx

    1. Naomi, So true! Yes, it's so pretty right now! You need to plan a trip here!

  2. I must get that book, thanks for recommending it... has anyone ever told you your niece looks so much like you? Your gorgeous California Girls!
    Your boys are adorable and so funny, "harshing my mellow"! It does go by so fast and there's so much to do, so many details no wonder the days are a blur. Our son will be 21 in February, how did this happen? I miss him terribly, but he enjoys school and living in the city, still, when I think about him in grade 6 I could cry!

    1. Dani, I think that you are right so many details in a day. It all gets swallowed up in minutiae and I feel like I can barely grasp at the quality time! I cannot even think about what it will feel like to have one away at school! I'm not looking forward to that..

      I hope you check out the book! It's pretty fun read, photos and good stuff.

  3. Fab post kim!
    Kids! If you ever want a reminder of life with a toddler, I can ship her right on over for a few weeks, she would LOVE the boys!
    Uniqlo is good, the jackets are sweet, and the best stuff is the designer limited things they do, like with Jill Sander. I prefer Gap though!
    Happy autumn weekend xxxx

    1. Karen, I wish you could ship little Meadow! I missed out on the whole girl experience!! She's such a doll and so smart!

      Well, bad experience at Uniqlo. I got there when the mall opened at 10 am and there was a line snaking around the mall about a mile long...Just to get in!!! Crazy. I guess it must be good, but I prefer to wait when there are no crowds. A $14 fleece is not worth standing in that kind of line.. Gap has been so good lately, I popped over there instead!


  4. Good morning Kim! It is finally cooling off and looking like fall here in Chico. Your pics are so pretty. They make me want to put on a cozy sweater and go for a walk. You are such a good mom. I love your family stories. You are right-these moments are fleeting so I'm glad you are savoring them. As busy as you are, you deserve a girlfriend's getaway to the city! ;) So exciting!
    Wishing you a lovely fall weekend girlfriend!
    xx, Heather

    1. Heather thanks. The days I want to tear my heair out, I just look back at a photo from even a year ago and see how darn fast it's all going by. This will be a small blip in our lifetimes, so I don't want to screw it up.. I know you must be so busy too. School psychologist, running your store and writing your blog! Can't wait for our SF trip!! We will all be ready to chill!

  5. Such lovely photos. I so know what you mean, and I think this is a glimpse into my future, too. I hope you are well.

    1. Leigh, Yes, a bit of it. Though you are in the very demanding ages now, each age seems to have their challenges.. Hope you are enjoying fall and have a good weekend! I must pop by your blog. x

  6. The colours in those first photos are so gorgeous and I love the touch of purple! Apple Hill sounds like my kind of place with the bakeries and wineries! Thanks for the book recommendation - sounds interesting and I must pop over to the blog too.

    1. Miss B, Yes, check out her blog. What a treasure this lady is. I think you would love Apple Hill!! Need to plan a visit! Have a good weekend! xx

  7. Wonderful Fall colours in your area Kim. I like Fall because of the changing colours and cool temperature. But it is a sign too that Christmas is coming soon. Enjoy Fall!

  8. Wonderful photos of all the family and the changing leaves. Yes isn't the light fantastic this time of year? Our kids just walk off to the school and hang with their friends at the weekends (or at least that's what I think they're doing.) In some ways its sad and the end of an era...