Unplugged play idea: kiddie pool + bubbles = awesome!


Yesterday was the hottest day of the year so far in central Indiana and, after the long winter, the kids and I were ready for it!  We’ve been loving the sunshine and the blue skies.

This week has been the first week of the year we’ve been using the pool, which is always one of our favorite backyard summer treats.

Normally we have a larger pool that uses a filter to keep it clean and the water clear all season long.  This year, however, my youngest doesn’t quite have her sea legs, though she’s eager to explore the water, so we decided a smaller kiddie pool would be best for our backyard space.

A kiddie pool for the summers we have toddlers seems to be a family tradition and my big kids don’t mind too much as long as we take them on plenty of trips to the big pool, too.

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Lucy turns five and the country mice visit the city {Want, Need, Wear, Read}

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Note:  there are affiliate links within this post.

Sunday was a pretty exciting day at our house.  While I was celebrating being a mother, our family was also celebrating one of the very special people in our house because it was Lucy”s fifth birthday!

Lucy is one of my quieter children (though she has her moments of zaniness and wild behavior) and birthday parties aren”t really her thing.  Her introverted mother can certainly relate to that.

After some discussion, Lucy and I decided that we”d most like to spend our day swimming and being pampered and visiting one of her favorite places – the “big city.”

Yes, there”s a bit of irony in the country family “escaping” to the city.  It was very city mouse/country mouse of us, don”t you think?

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Helping mothers and babies through the Child Survival Program in Ethiopia (phase 2)

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Did you see the announcement Tsh made last week  on Simple Mom? SLM is once again partnering with Compassion to sponsor a Child Survival Program in Ethiopia and we’re raising funds for phase two.

Friends, there are many reasons that I love being a writer and the opportunity to participate in things like this is one of them. I was SO proud to be a part of the fund raising for phase one of our CSP and it was a neat experience as we worked together to provide the funds to make it possible.

For those who might not remember or who are new readers, a Child Survival Program, or CSP, needs $25,000 per year to operate.  You can head to the Pure Charity page for this project to learn more.

As group of blogs Simple Living Media draws over one million unique visitors monthly.  Just think: what if everyone who visited our sites gave a dollar? Just think of what that could mean for these mamas and their babies!

I mean, it sounds really wonderful, right?

Keep reading and I’ll share with you how you can help …

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Weekend Link Love


Have wonderful Mother’s Day weekend, friends.  I hope you get to rest, re-charge, and spend a little time being pampered, loved, and cared for.  You’re amazing!

Those Amazing Ordinary Moments


The following was originally published in May 2010.  I have revised it a bit and added some new photos to share with you this Mother’s Day weekend.  I hope you enjoy it.  Best wishes, Kara

I love taking pictures of my kids.  I may not be the best photographer, or have fancy camera equipment, but every holiday, birthday, and special occasion will find me enthusiastically snapping pictures and coaxing smiles from my family.

Mother’s Day is this weekend and I will, of course, be bringing my camera along to document the day.  However, this year I want to take a different approach when looking through the lens of my camera: I want to focus on the ordinary.

What will I want to have a memory of years from now?  What seemingly ordinary moments and things will be precious to myself and to my children in the future?

KaraKids2010How much has changed since 2010. Wow.

Moments to Capture this Mother’s Day

The Faces

Because we don’t get together too often, I have a tendency try to squeeze every family member I can into large group photos. I do this because I want a record of us all together.

But afterward, I find myself staring a stack of group shots that I’m disappointed in because someone’s eyes were closed or somebody was looking away.

This  year I want to forgo the group shots and focus more on faces and individuals. [Read more…]