after dinner
we find our way outside
flip flops sneakers bare feet
down the wooden steps
and into the yard

bellies full and satisfied
with grilled summertime fare
we tear free

the pup races in circles
our circles are larger less formed
and include
soccer ball cartwheels swing

the sun
our loyal daily guide
dips behind the junipers
peeks between boughs
whispers goodnight

we laugh smile tumble
revel in a summer eve
the grass cool against feet and ankles
the air warm in its embrace
gentle near perfect

and then
with some regret
we move indoors
the circles smaller and smaller and smaller

we each lie quietly with book
or closed eyes
one summer day transitioning
into the next

the air will turn crisp
layers will be donned
but the circles will go on
larger or smaller yielding

always we circle
around and with each other
around and with the seasons

circle cycle
essence and rhythm


sending a little love your way, m




this boy


this boy…
who just turned twelve
who practically bounced off the walls for three days prior
who came to wake me at 6am sharp so that we could go buy fresh doughnuts for breakfast dessert

this boy…
who wanted to see fish on his birthday
so we settled on the zoo and enjoyed other animals as well
who wanted to try out his new golf clubs
so we headed to the range after dinner and used every last ball

this boy…
who has requested the same birthday dinner for years now
which consists of new york strip steak, homemade fettuccine
(because he only likes mine, and i don’t mind admitting that this pleases me to no end),
adults-only vegetables, all followed by boston cream pie

this boy…
who listens to recorded lectures about black holes and space time
and enjoys video games more than i would like
who can read for hours at a time when lost in a fictional series
and who enjoys family read-alouds perhaps as much as i

this boy…
who has become very sporty but who also draws and paints with skill
who wrote haikus during april for national poetry month
and who runs his heart out on the soccer field, trying this new-to-him sport with a team full of boys who’ve been playing for years

this boy…
whose sense of humor is gaining sophistication
while also allowing for the less sophisticated, bodily-functions-type humor which cracks up his younger sister, ahem

this boy…
who gives the gentlest kisses
and asks his dad how his day at work went
and who, whenever i’m having a really lousy day, knows this and always finds some moment in the day to pat my back and ask if i’m okay

this boy…
he is a treasure, i tell you


sending a little love your way, m



this girl


this girl…
who just turned eight
who requested a hike on her birthday
and even though it was cold and kind of drizzly, she has a fantastic daddy who said we should go anyway
and, you know what, the hike was cold and kind of drizzly…but it was also a lot of fun

this girl…
who requested funfetti cake for her birthday
{and, even though i really wanted to make something from scratch, i obliged}
and who has a big brother who decorated her cake just the way she wanted it

this girl…
who gave out hugs after each present opened
who was as excited about the balloons her brother and daddy went out to get on her birthday morning as she was for any of her other gifts

this girl…
who loves glitter and sparkles
but doesn’t care a lick for ruffles or frill

this girl…
who is funny and bright
energetic and boisterous
kind and tender

this girl…
she is a treasure, i tell you


sending a little love your way, m



this pup


they told me it is like having another baby.  they told me it’s a whole lotta work.  they told me they told me they told me.

and i believed them, i really did.  but it is a different thing to actually live it.  so now there is constant monitoring and wake-up calls {regularly} during the night.  there is the worry of a little one eating enough, drinking enough.

but there is also the tiny warm body in the crook of an arm.  there are the warm kisses on the tip of a nose.  the golden curls on the softest of ears.  the wagging of a bitty tail.  there is the complete collapse into a deep and trusting sleep, nestled against one of us, wanting to be snug and close.

this pup is completely melting our hearts.


sending a little love your way, m

p.s. our little pup is a cockapoo.  and her name is kona.





this summer

this summer finds us moving through our weeks
faster than i might like
where does the time go, i wonder
one day melts into the next and shortly after eyes have closed
they open yet again to another new day
another new day that brings so much goodness

i thought i was going to free-list our summer for you
tell you about the swimming and ice cream and creeks and garden bounty
but i’ve deleted the words, the lines, the stories
because this is what i want to tell you

i want to share honestly that i’ve had moments where
i felt low and sluggish and unmotivated
but there were more moments where i was in the groove
and my heart was full
more moments where i lifted my face to the sun
and at the end of each summer day, my eyes have closed
and thereafter opened again

this summer
is just a slice of my life
a moment made up of minute moments
i note the weeding as well as the delicious food
grilled by a loving husband and eaten in the company
of two fantastic children
this summer has been good

how has your summer been? {or depending on your corner of the world, your winter?!}

sending a little love your way, m


playful surrender

our toes wriggle in the sand
grains of warmth
digging holes, piling mounds
feet run down to water’s edge
waves lap the toes
then tumble on and around our legs
splashing bellies, arms, chests, faces

and our eyes twinkle with joy
reflect the light of the sun
breezes blow through our hair
lightly whipping our cheeks with kisses of summer

our playground, our haven
we surrender to the rhythm of the ocean
to the rhythm of nothing but hungry bellies and tired bodies at day’s end
in this space where land meets sea meets sky
we surrender to each moment that is now

…glad to be back in this space with you…

sending a little love your way, m

elizabeth over at mystic vixen and squam brought something to my attention that i’d like to share with you.  the state of california has announced plans to close down a large portion of their state parks.  california needs those parks, needs that wild space.  we, all of us, need that space.  it is part of our living, breathing planet.  will you take a few minutes to watch this short clip?

The First 70 Trailer from Heath Hen Films

you can take action here.

and one more thing…while i was away with my family, dipping my toes into the ocean, i was nominated for the versatile blogger award.  thank you, heather, for the nomination!
please do visit heather over at her space joyfulwise

in the spirit of this community award, here are seven things you may not know about me:  i enjoy washing dishes {yes, by hand} + i watch it’s a wonderful life with my husband every year around christmas {and i bawl like a baby…every single time} + i have a sweet tooth + i second-guess myself {a lot} + i love color + my favorite teacher in high school was mr. harmanos {math….which wasn’t my favorite subject…which just goes to show you} + i love books {the real ones…with ink printed on paper}.

and here are a few wordpress blogs:  Barefoot Five + The Habit of Being + Happiness Needs Company + Pipkin Hollow + PhotoBotos.


the other day we visited good friends who we’ve not seen in months.  the kids played; the mamas chatted.  it’s so good to catch up, to settle in right where you left off.

during our visit, we picked blueberries that were gorgeous and plump.  they hung in clumps from the branches, beautiful clusters…hues ranging from celadon to rose to blueberry blue.  we plucked them from the bush and plopped them into our bowl…or mouth.  juicy and warm from the sun, just the right sweetness.  these blueberries growing in my friend’s garden…surely grown with love.

delight on a summer day.

the next morning was gray and rainy.  i dropped handfuls of berries into my bowl…tossed them with lemon juice…topped them with crumbled oats, flour, butter, brown sugar, cinnamon, nutmeg.  i baked that bowl of delicious as the rain fell outside.  then i sat and ate my blueberry breakfast bake.  i sipped my tea.  and i felt complete contentment.

it’s mornings like this that remind me how fortunate i am to have frequent slow and easy and delicious starts to my days.  i’m a lucky mama who gets to be home with her kids each and every day.  i know this is a privilege, and i feel so much gratitude for the life i live.  having the time to make a good homemade breakfast, having the time to sip hot tea, having the time to read aloud to or play a board game with my kids…pure delight.

and this morning?  more delight…blueberry muffins.
{click here for my favorite recipe}

sending a little love your way, m


tucking away some magic

some time was spent this past weekend getting the final things into our vegetable garden.  as the weeks progress, we’ll be adding here and there…like butternut squash following the sugar snap peas.  but, for now, the seeds and seedlings are all nestled into our garden.

i didn’t get around to starting our tomatoes or peppers indoors {i’ll try for that next year} so i’ve been waiting for our local nursery to get their supply of those seedlings.  over the weekend, my daughter and i visited the nursery, and before picking out our plants, we wandered through the nursery a bit.  it was a beautifully sunny, not-too-warm, not-too-cool morning.  the flowers in the greenhouse were lovely, the glazed gardening pots like rainbows of clay.  but my favorite part of our nursery stroll was through the plants, shrubs, and saplings.  there were close walkways among all the lush greenery and these little paths carried with them a hint of magic.  it felt like we were walking on secret paths.

my daughter was skipping along, pausing to show me this and that.  we noted the yellowy greens, the red-tinged greens, the silvery greens.  we noted soft and pointy.  tall and short.  slender, wide.  it wasn’t a long walk through the nursery.  but it was a walk filled with sweetness.  my daughter skipped and smiled, filled with a simple and pure joy.  and i followed her…not skipping, but smiling…and filled with a simple and pure joy.

so we brought home a wee bit of that magic, i hope…lovingly placed some of it in our garden and lovingly tucked a bit of it away in our hearts.

whatever your weekend held for you, i hope there were bits of joy, bits of magic tucked in there for you.

sending a little love your way, m


good times

my daughter recently turned 7 and my son will turn 11 next week.  with birthdays just one month apart and my daughter’s favorite friends being siblings of my son’s favorite friends, i convinced them to join party fronts.  neither my daughter nor son wished for anything extraordinary for their parties.  they consistently said they just wanted to play.    so the other day, a day of play is what we had.  it was labeled as birthday party on the calendar, referenced in conversations {of which there were many} as birthday party. but as far as a parent is concerned, it was really a glorified playdate.  even two days before the party, i found myself thinking of fun little projects or games for the party.  then i stopped myself.  i reminded myself of my children’s very specific words:  i just want to play.

and, really, it made my life so much easier.  i will admit that i like the idea of a martha stewart party with everything decorated beautifully and the food just so, with clever games, activities, and party favors.  but to get to that martha stewart status {which i don’t think i’ve ever attained in past years…} requires a lot of …unnecessary… stress.  this year, my children unknowingly gifted me with stress-free party planning.

the usual grocery store trip was full of fun and anticipation as they helped gather party food…and balloons!  oh, the magic of balloons.  the plan was play, pizza, play, treasure hunt, brownie sundaes, play.  pretty simple, no?  i did a treasure hunt** for the girls, and a treasure hunt for the boys.  the “treasure” was a coupon for a brownie sundae.  you see…i didn’t even have to bake a cake or frost cupcakes.  i just had to bake requested brownies.  more kisses to my kids.  the only question in my mind was how loud things were going to get.

the girls did their thing, the boys theirs.  we came together for pizza which was a ridiculously loud and rowdy gathering, but if you had seen the smiles on those faces…  after lunch, the kids ran off to play some more.  and following their separate treasure hunts, we joined up again around the kitchen table for brownie sundaes…i’m sure way too much chocolate and caramel syrup was slopped into bowls.  but it was a party, right?

i cannot tell you how glorious a day it was.  my children were over-the-moon happy with their friends playing at their house all at once.  they were thrilled with pizza and brownie sundaes.  they were excited by the treasure hunt.  seriously, it almost brings tears to my eyes as i type this, thinking about how happy they were…how easy, really, it was to give them that day.  it was so beautifully simple in design…their design.  they don’t need much really.  our party time was a lovely reminder of that.

pizza + balloons + brownie sundaes + friends = good times

i tell you, i was on a high that entire day.

so i leave you with this idea of keeping things simple.  sometimes less is more.  we’ve all heard that, i know.  but really…

please do make some room in your life for ease and friendship and balloons.
so, so good.

sending a little love your way, m

** i used downloadable treasure hunts from here…second time i’ve used them.  i highly recommend!  you print it out {maybe glue clues to colored card stock} and hide.  there are directions telling you exactly how/where to hide each clue.  all you have to do is read and follow directions.  no thinking involved…because being witty and clever with treasure hunt clues and making sure i hide clues in the right spot so that hunters will get to the next appropriate clue is not high on my list of what i want to do on party day.