If you were to come over for a cup of coffee…
Because there are some new readers around here I thought I would re-introduce myself.
My name is Fawn. This little blog here captures pieces of our lives. I am married to a guy I fell in love with over an argument on Britney Spears at the age of 21. I have two boys who have taught me that love at first sight is an actual thing… This blog along with my Facebook page and Instagram account often capture snippets of my husband and two boys… along with our two dogs Nala and Charlie.
Our 1 year old lab Charlie is a girl. We let our then 5 year old son name her… and he wanted to name her after the velociraptor on Jurassic World. I should have seen the sign then. She is adorable and sweet 70% of the time, but she has been a challenge to say the least. But she is the best coddler on the planet… and she has been good at cleaning out the toy abundance our home drowns in… because she chews on EVERYTHING.
Nala was our first child. She was a Valentine’s Day gift for my husband in college. He swears she was just as difficult as Charlie.. But I must have blocked that out of my memory. She is almost 13 now.. And there is no better dog in this world.
We tackle a lot of DIY projects on the blog. We started out doing this because we had just bought our first home… and I would spend hours on Pinterest… dreaming of all the beautiful pictures I found… wondering how long it would take me to own every single item in the Pottery Barn Catalog… But I would see all these posts on Copy Cat Pottery Barn furniture plans and people claiming it was easy. So I figured why wait? Why not try it.. What did I have to lose? So we started out small.. Building a dining room bench.. Re-finishing Goodwill dressers… etc. and we have built on that each year. We have added built ins… put in new flooring… tiled… and more. We research a lot before we start something new. I usually develop the plan… then show it to Jerry. He spends hours watching YouTube videos trying to figure out what will be the easiest for him and then we start… hold our breath… and hope it turns out. 8 times out of 10. it turns out perfectly fine. And I love the imperfections on a lot of our projects because they are ours… it’s our story. Making our house our home … and customizing it every single step of the way. For me… there is a lot of beauty in that. And then we started documenting those adventures through our blog.
Few random things about me:
- I love chips and salsa. Even for breakfast. Any time of the day.. Morning or night.
- I pretend to be a vegan. But I still eat eggs and goat cheese. And steal bites of my kids mac n cheese :)
- But ultimately – I stick to a pretty plant based diet. But it’s easier to say Vegan or plant based. Then explain to them those three exceptions above. Because most people don’t really care.
- I don’t love pizza. Seems that most people LOVE pizza. I could never eat pizza again and not miss it.
- I have 6 nieces… and seriously these girls do no wrong when it comes to their cousin Maddux. There is something about watching my boys being raised surrounded by these beautiful… strong… smart girls. And how his face just lights up at the mention of any single one of them. Hudson will get there someday. But right now… they just take things away from him so he finds them annoying… I think that is what toddlers do… grab things they shouldn’t have and then shoot dirty looks and throw tantrums at the giants that take them away. But he is lucky… those girls are always looking out for him :) He will realize that.. Some day.
- I went to college and graduated with a B.A. in Economics. I have continually thought about getting my Masters… but life gets me distracted and I just don’t know if I can fit that in with the boys. Well.. I CAN. But do I want to?
- Back in my 20’s I loved shopping. Now… I loathe the idea of heading into a store and trying things on. I want simple pieces that work no matter where I am and in my 30s I have become fearful of color. My closet is filled with black, white, and navy
- Maybe the fear of color came with kids. I can still wear white but I am bleaching the crap out of those white shirts almost weekly… because the boys love touching me with their dirty hands. At least once a week they wipe their noses on me… or grab onto me with a handful of blueberries or spaghetti.
- I have no idea who anyone is on the radio anymore. I am so out of it. I can’t be the only one right? I put the satellite station to play songs from 2000-2006. I just live in that time frame musically. Guy… I just learned who Adele was a few months ago. And I am still not on board. I get it.. She’s amazing. But I don’t want to learn new music… I will just go back to Britney, Nelly, Eminem, and Ashanti. That’s right… Ashanti.
- We do listen to the Beatles quite a bit. The boys are obsessed with my Beatles record.
I try and be an advocate of not competing with other moms. I often find myself writing on the topic because every time you log into Facebook you see it. Someone posting some accomplishment… of limiting TV or Organic this or that. Or don’t use these products because they give your kid cancer. And some people see these things as “informative” and think they are helping others out… but then other moms question themselves and it turns into this rapid wind tunnel of not feeling good enough.
I am really lucky with my family. Now, I’ll talk about my sister in law. I have talked about how great my sister is in every aspect on this blog, so if you have followed along you understand the appreciation… love and respect of all things involving my sister.
So today I’ll switch it up and bring up my sister in law (and my brother) but well.. Since I am talking about motherhood… we will focus on her. But I have been lucky with all the women I am surrounded by … especially when it comes to motherhood. But she has gone with what she has thought is best for her kids… she never fell into the trap of what was trendy or popular. Now between her and my brother – I am sure they had their moments as we all do. Their moments of weakness where they questioned themselves… and talked it out. But they have always stuck by their decisions and stayed on a team. They have shown me through example the benefits of team parenting and what that does for your kids. They have commented on questioning themselves doesn’t work and feeling guilty doesn’t benefit anyone. You do the best you can in that moment… you talk to your kids…. Stay honest with your kids… open communication.. .and that alone is good enough. They don’t dwell on what ifs… or should haves… and through the years I got to witness a pretty awesome connection between her and her girls. Now it’s not all perfect and they have good days and bad days just like everyone else… but my point is… we are trying to give this image of “perfect parenting” and I have friends that worry themselves sick over doing enough for their 2 year old kid… and I hope that you are all lucky enough to find someone that shows you… being you is enough. More than enough. And really parenting is you making up the rules as you go. Developing that relationship with your kids. There is no textbook on that… but you have to make that choice every single day to work on that. I think letting go of the perfect image and being real… being honest… flaws and all with your kids … well I have seen the benefits of that with my own eyes. My mom did that in her own way with us girls… and then my sister in her own way is doing that with hers… and my sister in law has been such a HUGE outside example of the mother I hope to be.
I have watched her being nothing less… and nothing more… than just herself with her kids. And how that has gave them the confidence to do the same. I watched her struggle with her kids heart breaks and guiding them to continue to be themselves regardless of what others say. And I have seen her get through those tough years… handling it with communication and openness and how that has provided her girls with confidence and endless support. And even on those hard days… teaching her kids to handle it with their heads high… and the how much power that gives them. My sister and I are cut from the same cloth… and we were raised by a strong .. independent mother. But having someone that was not raised by that same woman… and seeing her version of strong and independent.. finding similarities and differences… and observing… and learning… well I hope you are lucky enough to have several people who support you. who you can relate to on different levels. but most importantly.. .I hope you are as lucky as me to be surrounded by mothers who do not judge.. who let you figure it out as you go.. and encourage you to do things the way they work for you… and most importantly… I hope being in the presence of them makes you not only a better mom… but a better friend.. A friend that learns to except differences in other moms.. and a friend that can laugh off the messiness of motherhood… and even if they have a different take on how it’s done can be supportive of how you handle it as well. because ladies … that’s the type of friend we all need to strive to be.
I have always had my mom and my sister my whole life.. But my sister in law being added to the family has been such a huge blessing as well. Through the years… without realizing it. she has taught me to let go of what everyone else thinks you should be.. Because the best thing you can do for your kids… is be yourself.
I just hope that all you other moms out there have people like this around you. A support system of being real. A group of mothers you don’t have to impress. You don’t have to justify your decisions to. Because as long as your kids are healthy and happy… the people you want to surround yourself with will tell you… that is more than enough.
I come from divorced parents. And this is not a bad thing. My parents had me in their teens. I was a surprise… and they were kids themselves. They were married for about 15 years… and they did the best they could… but as time went on… they grew up and went separate ways. The divorce brought me closer to each of them… and somehow through that divorce my parents worked together with parenting better than they did when they lived under one roof. Don’t get me wrong… It wasn’t a terrible living situation… I have a happy… childhood. I was surrounded by people who loved me… supported me.. .and made me laugh uncontrollably. But they had to work harder at co-parenting after the divorce… I know how lucky I am that they both made that choice and for a lot of people divorce is hard and ugly… and parents can’t be in the same room anymore. But they made the decision (and it took some time to heal first) but they made the decision to co parent us… they chose us. And I gained a pretty amazing step dad in the process. So I am lucky enough to have three supportive parents who love my boys more than life itself.
But with my sister in law and brother they have shown me what co-parenting does from the start. Being on the same side (even if you disagree … you back that person) and it has been something that has really spoken out to me. Funny thing is… they come from “broken” homes just like me. So this is something they accomplished on their own. And it’s something I have always truly admired.
So I like to try and break down that idea of perfection because I am guilty of sharing “pretty photos in little squares” on Instagram. I try to be honest about not being perfect. Being far from perfect. I don’t worry about if my kids eat organic… if my two year old decides he is only eating mac and cheese for a whole week. Well I give that to him because I need him to eat something. My son is a master manipulator… and even though its adorable… I know someday I will have my hands full. My husband and I fight during projects – we are trying to figure out ways to record tutorials on a few projects for future posts… but we have to figure out how to fake it and look civil because you don’t want to see a 30 minute tutorial of us bickering … and him man handling a project until it breaks and me standing there annoying saying “I told you so” because that’s real life. My boys run around like crazy monkeys at a zoo and leave a trail of toys behind them. There is always food in my couch cushions because even though I created and open concept living area so that NO ONE would eat in the living room. Every time I go out of town for work… I know my three boys are sitting in the living room snacking away and I will get home and find… crackers… apples.. Bananas… Oreos inside my couch. True story. But I try so hard to not take myself too seriously… and the boys are only this age for so long… and before I know it I will be wishing for days of mashed up bananas in my couch cushions.. (okay maybe not bananas… but you know) I am very aware of house fast motherhood is going… and it’s painful. I try to live in the moment and not take a single day with them for granted… but some days I want them to go to bed early so I can sit on the couch and watch Hulu for four hours straight… and I try and cut myself slack on those days as well.
So if you are following along… I am hoping to improve the content on DIY home projects… and I will still keep these Friday ramblings because well… another honest thing.. I don’t have friends in the area…so this is how I pretend that have a normal life with friends that come over and sit with me and gossip over a cup of coffee. And if we are local friends and if you do ever truly stop by unannounced.. I need to set your expectations that my house is guaranteed to be a mess. I figure in 16 years or so my house will remain clean and I will hate it and be wishing for the days of Nerf guns and animal crackers.
Until next week… sweet friend.