Thursday, August 6, 2015



I have tried to write this post a couple of times now, but keep deleting what I have and then starting over and then wondering how/if I should go about saying what I want to say. In the end I feel like I cannot be true to this blog if I don’t write about this…it is all I can think about and has changed the person I am so much that to not write about it would almost be lying to you.

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Recently one of our dear friends, Alison, passed away after a 5 month hard fought battle with cancer. She leaves behind a wonderful husband, a 10 month old son and many friends and family members. I won’t go into too much detail about everything because I want to respect her family and don’t feel like it is my place to just put stuff out there…however, I need to talk about how this has changed me. I need to ask for thoughtful prayers and positive thoughts and vibes for her family. I only had the privilege of knowing Alison for about three years so the real prayers and support go to her husband, family and friends that don’t know life without her until now.  I can’t speak for them, I can only speak for myself and so this is how she changed my life.

When someone passes away at a young age it is so devastating and heart breaking, there is really no other way to describe it. Alison, specifically, was literally the most kind and sweetest person I have ever met.  She had such a way about her that made everyone feel like her dear friend.  She cared so much about every single person she ever came across…not just pretended she cared, she actually cared. That is rare…and in her passing it has gotten me thinking.  Thinking about what I can do to continue her kindness…thinking about how she made others feel and how I want to make others feel that way too.

It sucks that sometimes the only way we are woken up to parts of life is thru loss…I guess that is just how life works. I want to be kinder because Alison showed how great that gift is.  I want to make people feel loved because she loved so deeply. I want to really listen to every lyric and note in every single song, because she loved music and found such joy and comfort in every part of it, and I used to be like that but life got in the way…her love for music has reminded me of my love for music.

I honestly know there is not one single thing I can say or tell myself or others that will make any of this seem to make sense.  We lost a dear, sweet person waaaaaay too early but I guess I find comfort in knowing that I can somehow take what she modeled in her life and move forward trying to spread a little bit of Alison on the daily.

I looked at her Pinterest after she passed away because I just had a feeling she  loved pinning quotes. I was right, and so I will leave you with several of her pinned quotes which simply shows the kind of person we will miss and the kind of person we can all strive to be a little bit more like.


the little things

be kind.

Tuesday, August 4, 2015

Tuesday Talk:Road Trip

Hello, hello, hello… I still cannot believe it is already August…this summer has flown by!!  Like I said yesterday, we have been really trying to take advantage of these beautiful days when the humidity is low (thank the good, good Lord for those days…and all days, of course…but especially the low humidity days!) Parks, parks and more parks is where it is at right now.  We have been to the pool a handful of times this year, but in all honesty it just isn’t worth the prep work at this age.  By the time I get myself ready and Ellie ready and pack up all the junk we need to make the day successful we are both exhausted before we even get there…and then we get in the pool and about 25 minutes later little miss is ready to get out, tired from the sun and we head home…one hour of prep work for 20 minutes…don’t get me wrong, I have done this plenty this summer and I love the joy she has from getting in the water so the sacrifice of one hour to get our junk in order is usually worth it…but I’m just saying it is not number one on our list of things to do…anyone else hear me on this. And I only have one kid….bless you mother’s out there with two, three or more!!!!!!!

Speaking of getting our junk in order, this week we are gearing up for a mini vacation up to Lake Ontario and I couldn’t be more excited.  We love visiting up there…the lake, the little cottages, the lifestyle…all so relaxing.  I have been going there every summer forever now and Joe has been up there a couple of times.  Last year was Ellie’s first trip and it was so much fun, but this year is a complete different ballgame.  She can walk and she can run, and she is into everything…which means not quite as relaxing as the many times before for us, but way more rewarding and fun!

Here is a picture of her from last year with my mom…what a chunk!!! (obviously i am talking about ellie here, NOT my mom!)

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And a few more, because she is just so cute I want to pinch those cheeks!!!!!

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Ok, ok…so getting back to gathering our junk for this trip…

On this fine Tuesday I bring to you a few random things that I am hoping to add to our belongings to make the trip a little easier on all of us:

1// Magna-Doodle: Ellie loves to color and draw, but she loves to do this while carrying around a notebook and marker which makes this momma nervous for artwork on the walls or furniture. One of our friends had this and Ellie fell in love.  I thought it would be perfect for the car: easy and no mess at all.

2// Crayola Color Wonder: This goes along with what I said above…the kid loves to color.  This product is amazing.  It is special coloring pages that have to be used with the color wonder markers…the cool thing is that the markers appear clear until you use them on the special paper: meaning no mess if she draws all over herself or the walls!!!  Although this won’t be as easy as the magna doodle in the car, I still want to take this along to offer an alternative and for when we actually get up to the lake for something fun to do.

3//Portable DVD Player: I am hoping we can get our hands on one of these before the trip because I am sure it will help the ride go so much smoother…

4// Snacks, snack and more snacks:  Do I even need to explain this one or use a picture?!?! Toddlers and adults, no matter what age, snacks make a road trip so much better!!!


Any other ideas you may have for an 18 month old in the car for 6 hours, which I realize is not that terribly long, but still…We do plan on leaving pretty early in the morning so that she will just sleep most of the way up, but the way back will be during her prime play time hours so we could use all the help we can get!!!

Have a great Tuesday, oh and if you want to check out some other great blogs I am linking up below.  


Polka-Dotty Place

Monday, August 3, 2015

One Month Photo Dump

Hey guys…how has your summer been going?? We have been pretty busy over in these parts, obviously, because the last time I got around to writing was at the end of June! I just completely dropped the ball in July….and now it is already AUGUST….how is this possible?!?!?!

July was a month filled with rain, rain and more rain…but also some fun stuff thrown in there as well.  Although the month flew by I’m not going to lie…I am getting super excited for fall to hurry up and get here. The weather lately has been so great, super low humidity, and yesterday someone was burning leaves (at least that is exactly what it smelled like) and I immediately wanted to go put a sweatshirt on and drink hot chocolate (with baileys, duh) and started dreaming of fall leaves, football and pumpkins. 

I digress…back to July for know.  I am just going to light up your life with a nice little photo dump of all the things I forgot to write about over the last month to get you up to speed on the French household.

4th of July

Zanesville Country Club and Westerville Parade.

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The Westerville Parade is huge and it is something that was always so fun for Joe, so I know he was excited to finally get to take his own daughter (and wife) there to enjoy the same things he did when he was younger. Unfortunately, it was pretty darn hot and Ellie wasn’t wanting to say out for too long, but she loved all of the action for the time we were there, and we will for sure be adding this into our 4th of July traditions!!!

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Ellie actually sat and loved the fireworks. We were a little unsure of how she would react because of the loud noise but she seemed very interested and wouldn’t take her eyes off of them and it was the cutest thing ever!!  I have always enjoyed the Country Club fireworks so much because everyone brings lawn chairs and sits and the fireworks are set off and are literally right above you. It isn’t a huge group of people and there is something so magical about families all sitting there together “oooooing” and “ahhhhing”.  I was so excited to finally have a family of my own to share this with and it proved to be exactly how I thought it would always be…perfect!

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Kelley’s Island

Joe and I were lucky enough to head up to Kelley’s Island for a couple of nights thanks to my parents for offering a condo and to my mother-in-law for taking good care of the Ellie and Reggie. We had such a great time.  We both love lakes…more than the ocean, I know I just said that…but we do. Something is so peaceful to us about being on a lake and it makes it even better when you can grab a few drinks and just hang out.  If you have never been, Kelley’s Island is totally worth checking out…it is close to Put-n-Bay but not as crazy, in a good way :)

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And I will leave you with some random Ellie goodness…I know I am biased, but she is just the cutest thing EVER!!!


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ps: I didn’t purchase the fur vest against everything in me that was say “YES!!!”, maybe I will go back…

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