more birthday, some basics, and a book

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28 April 2017


1. Typing this with one hand so excuse (or enjoy?) my brevity for once. It's a long story that I'll type out when I'm back to two handed typing.

2. I know I already threw an identical snap up on Instagram but when I'm old and grey and flipping through my blog (unlikely but let a mother dream) I know I'll get a kick out of Sebastian's clasped hands. The best thing about birthdays around here might be that all the other kids act like it's their birthday too (Julia always, "needs to have a private discussion" with the birthday honoree after their presents have been opened so she can begin the bartering process .... ).

3. I've been listening to this song on repeat. Or shall I say en la repeticiĆ³n? I SHALL. I've even converted Simon - a feat.

4. L-O-V-E-D this article - I laughed out loud and sent it to Simon (sitting next to me at the time) to read it too and he agreed it was a gem. Thanks to Mary for sharing. I've always though Tracy and I would get along (we are on a first name basis, after ALL).

5. Recently discovered super cute kid basics (from a Facebook ad of all places - target audience bullseye) - first time orders get 20% off and free shipping. I've been having a hard time finding an affordable and simple swimsuit for Sebastian so I was really happy to discover that they just started making swimwear TOO.

6. Never NEWS news but everything is 40% off at LOFT at the moment and they have tons of cute new summer stuff.

7. Okay I don't know what possessed me to start reading The Young Wives Club this week but I have and it's not great but I have to know how it ends. I don't really recommend it but I had to fess up that I'm reading it. And I'm about to go finish it right now.

Hope your Friday night is a little more lively!


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23 April 2017

Normally I start birthday posts with thoughts of, "how are they already such and such age?!" but with Phoebe - it feels like she's been three for quite some time and has even requested, "four or five" candles on her (traditional carrot - and conveniently my favorite) birthday cake. We've been asking her what she wants to do to celebrate her birthday for months (since we have a little run of birthdays in the fall and around Christmas and she always wants to know when it's going to be her turn) and she hasn't wavered in saying she wants to go to, "Starbucks and Target" .... party animal in the making.

And so, we made it happen. Minus the Target - her memory isn't what it used to be, I guess.

If we had not had Phoebe and my parenting experience was limited to that of raising Julia, Sebastian, and Theo - I would never have believed that a spicy temperament like Phoebe's existed but alas - she's made me a believer. She keeps us laughing while simultaneously wondering where she came from but I suppose all parents feel the same way about their young at some point or another.

She is never deterred when told, "no" and only takes it as an opportunity to exercise her stellar compromising skills and figure out a more circuitous route to whatever it is that she wants. I think she truly believes that she's Theo's senior and superior and I think most days he feels the same way. She often bribes him into doing what she wants by promising that, "I'll be your best of best of friends" to which he always happily chirps, "okay!" ...

Whenever Bosco wakes up in a less than pleasant mood she always finds the nearest chair/couch to perch herself on and sighs as if I'm the clueless one and holds out her arms and assures me that he just wants her to hold him (exactly what he doesn't want) - so I think this new baby is in for a maternal treat of an older sister.

I really could go on and on and on but probably my favorite thing about Phoebe at this age is that her pronunciations of, "shirts" and "shorts" and "shits" are all the EXACT same which makes getting dressed a real good time.

Although, she strongly believes in wearing dresses all day every day which isn't a terrible phase. Big Kiss Little Kiss sent her this adorable dress and I've had a tough time prying it off her long enough to wash which is high praise in the book of Phoebe Patton.

Happy Birthday, Phoebe Anika! Our lives would be a lot less lively without you around!!!


Phoebe's birth story

late {spring} breaking

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20 April 2017

1. Greetings from the tail end of a wildly uneventful spring break. On Wednesday evening I took the kids to the playground and as Bosco did his little run/walk/fast arm swing onto the premises I noticed that he had a partially eaten Dum Dum stuck to the back of his shorts - which I think kind of sums the week up nicely. Next year I'm going to be proactive about planning something and might some of Simon's vacation time align nicely with the Spring Break 2k18? It just MIGHT :)

Anyway, overall it's been a nice break from the morning hustle and a little impetus to get my routine ducks in a row for the summer.

2. I'll tell you one Patton that has been l-o-v-i-n-g having everyone home ...

D-I-E-G-O and Diego was his name-o.

3. Simon keeps saying we should sign Julia up for art classes this summer and after rounding the corner today to find her making Diego sit for a portrait ... I guess he might have a bit of a point.

4. Thank you all for your wonderful and thoughtful suggestions on Kate's name post - I feel like our short list got quite a big longer which is a nice change from the first two trimesters.

5. I'm almost finished with America's First Daughter FINALLY. Longest I've ever taken to read a book? I believe so. I sort of cheated and started another Nancy Thayer book which I'm enjoying as kind of a vapid little breather.

6. As suspected - the maternity dress of my dreams went on sale (and the rest of the store is 40% off too! with the code: GETHAPPY) - glad I waited! Also, I wouldn't say I'm in the home stretch of this pregnancy but combine the heat (not a complaint - bring on the heat vs. the cold, always) with my rapidly growing persons and I'm looking to the skirt genre to keep me company from here on out and this non-maternity skirt has been a bit of a Godsend. Don't let the photo fool you because the model is tall - I'm 5'7'' and it hits just above my knee when worn under (not over!) el bump. And it will be perfect for postpartum/nursing - I think! I think.

7. I hate to keep cross posting from the Sale Rack BUT ... sometimes I can't help myself. These shorts have been a kid favorite around here for both the boys and the girls. They are marked down from $15 to $9 (and I'm sure they'll be discounted further eventually!). And pretty much the only time I let myself take a little look - when Anthropologie runs their 40% off clearance items sale and that time is now!

 ... Alright - that's that! We've got a birthday to prep for along with some family coming to town and I hope you have some fun plans on deck too!

Linking up with Kelly!

pretty in pink

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19 April 2017

Should I admit that I was v. v. v. tempted to title this, "piggies in pink?"


I won't. 

My love and admiration for all things pink/blush/champagne/dusty rose/shall I go on is still shining bright like a candle in the trendy wind and so after I caught myself bookmarking yet another pair of light pink footwear - I thought I'd share. 

1. Splendid Jody - I feel like I could call every pair my favorite but I do really love these. I have a couple pairs of espadrilles from this brand and can vouch for their comfort and quality. Phoebe says these are her favorite so that should count for something.

2. Bahamas Flats - okay I actually bought these but sent them back because they were a size too big (although now they would probably fit given the pregnancy swelling) but I LOVED them. They were super comfortable and cute with jeans/dresses etc. Maybe I'll gift myself a push present by the name of Bahama? Maybe I will. If you're not down with the plat/flatform here's a slightly sportier pair with a little more ventilation to boot (har har har, g$)

3. Minnetonka Marinas - Julia had the kids version of these last year and wore them every chance she got (a positive in my book because it means she can put them on herself and they are comfortable) I love the slight wedge but that they still look long-periods-of-time wearable. You know? I know you do.

4. Melenda Flats - maybe not super practical but you can't argue that aren't CUTE and a lot cheaper than a lot of similar styles I keep seeing popping up.

5. Asics - because I wear tennis shoes a good portion of every single day I always try to bridge the gap between practical and cute and I think these fit the bill. Right? Right.

6. Wedge Sandal - I might always be a sucker for a pretty wedge.

7. Coconuts cross strap platform - I have a pair very, very similar to this but the pink is just a lot more fun, I think.

8. suede espadrille - If'/when espadrilles go out of style will be a sad, sad day in Graceland because I love them. I'm still holding out hope that Target brings back my favorite pair from last summer but if not - these will be mighty tempting.

Of note! These pretty chucks are currently 40% off if you're looking for a fun twist on the traditional white that everyone seemed to be rocking the past few summers.

And I'll leave you with that! Julia has requested that I go hunt for some purple footwear so -- duty calls!



what's in a name?

17 April 2017

This is baby Bosco -- I'm still very much cooking the current Patton baby and have the boneless ankles to show for it.

Anyway, I'd hate to be irreverent and say that I've been looking forward to Easter Monday because of this post more than Easter Sunday but between you and me -- maybe I have. Kate oh SO generously offered to do a name consultation for this baby and I was so excited because I had so much fun reading and studying and rereading the one she did for Bosco that I knew she wouldn't disappoint this time around.


Dare I say she's outdone herself?

I dare.

She totally pegged a few names that Simon and I have since brought up and I always love her nickname suggestions too. I just love talking baby names in general.

Even if you're not Catholic or aren't into Catholic baby names - she's still a wizard (yes, I read all the other baby naming blogs/sites!) and I love all of her posts.

Alright - head over and tell me what you think! I'm closing comments here but I'd love to hear from you over there! I can't wait to present Simon with the post/comments/a beer or three tonight to hash them all out. Open-mouthed cackle.

Happy Monday!!!

Happy Easter!!!

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16 April 2017

I'm going above and beyond the ubiquitous call of duty here and in lieu of a cute family photo (all of which I love and heart/like with reckless abandon) on social media - I'm going to post a mediocre photo of my kids on my blog. Behind the curve? ALWAYS.

Our Easter morning began around 12:05am when one Phoebe Patton took it upon herself to pop out of bed, rearrange the Easter baskets so that she got two Easter baskets, Julia's bike helmet, and the lion's share of candy. I stumbled out to find her happily admiring her handiwork and promptly steered her back to her bottom bunk where she mercifully stayed for the next seven hours.

Other highlights include but are not limited to:

+ a well-balanced breakfast of Pillsbury Cinnamon Rolls & Asparagus Benedict & Reese's Eggs

+ the kids having lots of questions about the Easter Bunny since some nosy kids had spotted their baskets in our closet

+ Diego QUICKLY learning how to open plastic eggs and attempt to devour the contents (no chocolate + I'm quicker, luckily)

+ Bosco sneaking enough jelly beans to last him until Easter of 2k18 - not napping and happily going to bed at 6:18pm.

+ after Jessie pointed out that this non-maternity dress works really well as maternity (even third trimester maternity) and me realizing that I had it hanging in my closet (what are the odds?!) so that I didn't have to wear a dress one shade lighter than black on Easter morning.

+ hearing one of the best homilies in recent or even distant memory at Mass. If a recording or transcript becomes available - I'll be sure to let you all know! Like it or not :)

+ Only one kid practically gagging at dinner which was understandable because it wasn't awesome. I tried, I tried!

+ Julia loving and quickly finishing the Princess in Black book she got (thank you for all of your wonderful suggestions last week - who knew Junie B. Jones was such a polarizing gal? Not I!)

+ Simon asking if I was going for a von Trapp look for the boys once he saw them decked in their Easter finery ...

Anyone recognize Julia's dress from her Glinda costume?

I didn't think so (she was worried ... )

And I think that about does it! I hope you all had a wonderful Easter!!

the beach, burning questions, and books galore

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08 April 2017

1. Simon's brother and his wife (they have names: Andrew and Becca) came to visit last weekend and we had such a fun time. They brought their dog Truman so we decided to take the dogs with us to a dog-friendly beach ...

... Diego loves baths and if a shower door is left open he does NOT hesitate to waltz right in but I don't think he was quite prepared for the ocean water he leapt into with reckless abandon. Luckily, Andrew was right there to help him doggy paddle to shore (he stayed out of the water for the rest of the trip) but I can't look at this photo without letting out a cackle because I just hear his internal, "wtf wtf wtf wtf" like the crazy furmom that I think I am.

Moscow muling it up on the porch with Truman ...

Phoebe and Sebastian didn't understand why they couldn't have "just a little" vodka to call their own. On Saturday morning Simon and Andrew took all the kids on a bike ride (4 kids split among two trailers and Bosco in a bike seat and the older kids bikes strapped to the trailers for trail riding later) and rode to a park downtown. Will Simon always be the fun parent? ALWAYS.

Now you can rest easy knowing the nitty gritty of our weekend.

2. I'm still reading America's First Daughter and am really, really enjoying it. I've (very happily) taken to napping when the little kids nap in the early afternoons so my reading time has taken a big hit but I've been staying up a little bit later than I should to read, "just one more chapter" - you know how that goes. Also! The Magic of Motherhood came in the mail this week and it's such a good one to have around/gift to all your mom friends etc. I love that it's hardcover and has a built in bookmark - so smart, those moms!

3. You all always have the best book recs and have to ask since this is new territory for me but was hoping you could steer me in the direction of chapter books for Julia. Bonus if they hold the attention of any of the other kids because she prefers to read them out loud to anyone that will listen.

4. I've spent too much time thinking and Googling up a storm about this but our four bar stools (ours are turquoise) in the kitchen are super crowded and don't totally fit because of a curve in the counter which always leave one kid sitting at an odd angle so I'm hoping to find a slimmer design (smaller than 17 inches wide) and so far it looks like these are my best bet or these wooden ones and I love the idea of these but know that the practicality level of those is pretty much zero - maybe less. Maybe you've found these magical stools? Nothing that swivels is pretty much the only other requirement.

5. I have no idea if baseball tees are past their prime (or on their way back? I definitely rocked one for yearS in high school and thinking the 3/4 length sleeves were so edgy like the coolia that I was) but these are more than 1/2 off and I kind of love the lavender.

6. 50% off sale styles right on over here. I wish this dress was included but I know it will go on super sale eventually - that's just how LOFT rolls. I know you know. It's a good time to take advantage of the Gap/Old Navy site wide (no exclusions) 40% off sale because a lot of things are already on sale so you can double dip and you score some Old Navy/Gap cash in the process. Win/win/win. I'm curious to know how these flares compare to my favorite Madewell pair.

7. And finally - crossposted from the Sale Rack but Target's shoes are buy one get one 50% off for the whole family at the moment. I got these for Theo at the last minute for Emily's wedding when I realized his dress shoes were too small and was pleasantly surprised that they slip on and he can put them on himself. Also - these wedges are super cute and I can walk in them and they are on clearance (clearance items are included in the promo :)).

As Theo would say with a sigh, "alRIGHT ... " have a great remainder of your weekend!

Linking up with Kelly!

Easter Outfit Ideas: kids edition

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05 April 2017

I don't know about YOU but despite the smoke signals and blaring flares that is the 40 days and 40 nights of oh I don't know - LENT ... Easter always seems to sneak up on me. Or maybe it's just Easter morning and the mad dash to leave early enough to get a seated spot at church with everyone wearing something a little nicer than our usual Sunday garb. I have vivid memories of donning a white hat and white patent leather shoes as a girl and while I haven't passed along that fashionable tradition to my girls (yet!!) it's fun to try and find pretty but practical outfits that they'll wear throughout the summer too. I tried to make sure the dresses weren't too summery because we've gone to many an Easter morning mass having to wear tights and (cringe) boots thanks to some unspring-like storms.

I know there's a whole bunch of cute boys' clothing out there these days but I've never been awesome at finding it. I did my best but I'd love to hear if you've found any winners for your mini men. floral romper - for the lady babies. Something slightly off the beaten pink/white dress path (see below though). I always feel bad putting my crawlers in dresses because it's nearly impossible to crawl in a dress so I love to idea of a romper paired with a cardigan and tights for cooler climates. 

2. romper with tassels - same as above with a little bit of flare.

3. baby/toddler outfit with suspenders - I had great, great luck with finding cute boys' stuff for my sister's wedding at H&M (and they include the return label in the package which I REALLY appreciate) that washes and wears really well. It runs a little big but I was excited when I found this for Bosco.

4. baby boy romper - can't beat the quality of Mini Boden and this is about as sweet as it gets.

5. embroidered yoke dress (also comes in pink) - I've already dedicated a whole post to my love for embroidery and while a lot of people would argue that white is a dumb color/way to dress kids - I've found it's the easiest to keep clean with the help of bleach pens and bleach.

6. toddler tutu dress - both of my girls love tutu dresses and would wear them daily if they could.

7. skinny khakis - I've found that these fit well without looking like leggings and look find cuffed if they are a little long. Also - they come in a million colors.

8. shirt + bowtie set - sets can be a little cheesy looking but I thought this was one was cute.

9. gingham shirt + bowtie set - and then I saw this one and thought it was even cuter.

10. pink lace baby doll dress - believe it or not I've found some really cute dresses as Forever 21 for Julia - they passed the "wash and dry and didn't shrink up to crop tops" test too. Win/win.

11. girl's floral collared dress - a dress that I imagine would get passed down for years to come because of the quality and timeless nature of the pattern. Or maybe I'm imagining wrong - there's a first time for everything.

12. boy's chambray shirt - I did a post with Boden a few years ago and Simon still wears his shirt almost weekly for work and it still looks brand new. I love their boys button-ups because they can be left in the dryer for days and still not look like the wrinkled mess that they should.

13. boy's stretch khakis - for the older boys - love that these have a little stretch.

All she wrote. I've found very little on the maternity dress front in the way of floral/pastel/remotely cute so I'll probably wear my go-to with fun jewelry because I know it's been keeping you up at night.

Happy Wednesday, party people.


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