children and nature / IN THE GARDEN

Planting a terrarium garden

I feel like I could easily become a crazy plant lady. Maybe it was the doldrums of winter but I’m going through a new obsession where I want all.the.plants. So when I saw a friend’s terrarium garden several weeks ago, it immediately got bumped to the very top of my to-do list. 

I have definite memories of some type of terrarium-ish garden I had as a child. Planted in an oversized goldfish bowl it was also home to a collection of woolly bears and their subsequent chrysalis. 

Birdy was my sidekick in terrarium planting (surprise, I know.) and we decided if we were going to do it, we were going big. So we started with a 2-gallon Anchor Hocking glass canister. I was able to purchase all my supplies on Amazon and the whole process was simple + fun. A perfect kid project or a relaxing crazy plant lady project. You decide.  Read More


At home with a new mama

copyright I always kind of thought I’d have five kids. I’m not exactly sure where that number came from but it was always sort of settled in my mind. I grew up as the baby of four. My dad is the oldest of fifteen. I love big families. Four seemed do-able but five seemed wildly fun. 

But here I am happily settled in with my little pack of four. 

I never had that “I am so done having kids” moment. Neither did Dan. We are both baby crazy. But I did have a really hard recovery after Birdy was born. I’ve written about my postpartum depression a little bit and I think that is probably one of the biggest factors in my feeling settled where we are right now. Those out of whack hormones are a beast. And they still like to bubble up every now and again. (Which is another conversation I really want to have here.)

I was at a one-day photography workshop this winter that focused primarily on wedding photography. In case you didn’t know, wedding photography is not my thing, but it was an opportunity to hear from a photographer I admire in a really intimate setting, small workshop-style class, so I knew I could still learn a lot by being there. 

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Baby fever (literally.)

You guys. I am finally emerging from what was a really tough end to winter. Our family got hit with the flu–the high fever, body aches, fainting on the bathroom floor variety. I have never in all my parenting life seen my children so sick nor have I ever witnessed the number 104.1 on the thermometer after emerging from one of my children’s lips. It was a rough couple weeks as it slowly made our way through the family–except for me and Birdy–by some miraculous act of God. Everyone is still recovering, but much much improved.

In an act of normalcy, we attempted a family hike over the weekend, but some of us had to turn back early for utter lack of energy. We are still definitely recovering. 

By the way, I swear by THIS for keeping me from getting the flu. Thanks to my cousin and go-to for all things homeopathic, I’m convinced this is how I fought it off when I started to get a hint of the chills and aches. STOCK UP, people. Don’t mess around. 

But guess what? I have baby news! 

Jane and Sophie have impeccable timing, dropping their lambs on either side of our flu outbreak. Jane gave birth just days before people started to succumb and Sophie had her babies right as we were all coming out of the fog. 

Jane, gave birth to twins–Harriett and Tillie. Though we were anticipating triplets I have to admit, I was relieved after seeing how small Tillie was when she was born. I’m pretty sure a third lamb would have really struggled.

Those first few hours after the babies are born are nerve-wracking. As my cattleman grandfather likes to remind me, “sheep spend their whole lives trying to die” and I’m pretty sure that especially rings true for baby lambs. Thankfully, everyone got the hang of the nursing thing and my wonderful sheep farmer friend came by every few hours that first day to make sure all was well.

A few weeks later, Sophie also gave birth to twins–Walter and Willow. And once again they challenged our nerves for those first 24 hours. We ended up tube feeding Walter twice but the very next morning he was bouncing around the pen strong, happy and with a full tummy. 

Today was freedom day–the first time we let all the babies out of their lambing pens and into the flock with the big sheep. Jane’s lambs had already been running with the big girls, but today was the first time Walter and Willow got to experience freedom. 

There’s nothing quite like watching over my flock of ELEVEN lambs grazing on the hill. 

In the meantime, my girls just can’t get enough of the babies. Tillie has found a special place in Birdy’s heart. As soon as Birdy walks into the barn, Tillie finds her for scratching, nibbling and whispered secrets in her ear. Be still my heart. 

I have moments where I think maybe I bit off a little more than I can chew with all these sheep and this rapidly growing flock eating us out of house and home, but I wouldn’t trade these sweet moments in the barn for anything. 

More soon. xo.