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life, miscellaneous

life in general {airports with kids}

May 29, 2013

Last week, the family jetted down to NYC to honor and celebrate my sister-in-law’s graduation from NYU. It was a very exciting trip for all of us for lots of reasons, but I always get a little, tiny bit anxious when I am about to take a trip with our kids. I worry about the tantrum in the middle of a flight, negotiating good behavior, the “I have to go potty badly, right now“, so on and so on. I must say though, that we have been blessed with good little travelers. Moira flew for the first time at 3 months old and then again at 1 year…both times making it through cancellations and delays with as much grace as a baby could have at that time. Ronan flew for the first time when he was 15 months old and it was as much a breeze for him as it was for Baby Girl.

To deal with my growing nervousness, I did what any other Mom-who-likes-to-pretend-she-has-control would do…I prepared. I packed the kids backpacks with a book or two, coloring, tracing, maybe a computer game for Moira, and most wonderful of all…Snacks.


In case you didn’t know, food items are ok getting past the security. Just no drinks. I do typically bring empty water bottles when traveling and fill them, again and again, wherever I find a water fountain. I didn’t this time and was kicking myself, often, for not doing it. Water bottles.

airplane-treatsAnd yes I did pack marshmallows, which came in very handy when the kids had to sit still while my husband hunted down my suitcase. And the kisses…didn’t even use them…but always good to be prepared, right?

The preparation paid off. Sure, Ronan had a little hissy fit during takeoff because he wanted to stand on me and look out the window. Nothing a grape or two couldn’t fix though.

Can’t wait to share some of the photos from the trip!

Happy Travels!


Linking It Up:

Mommy's Monday


summer nights porch soiree {giveaway!}

May 10, 2013

In celebration of just reaching 200 “likes” on the Circus Berry Facebook page, I am hosting my first giveaway.

Summer is a-coming, and what screams summer nights like a pitcher of cold cocktails out on a porch with a couple of good friends/family? To help you on your way, I have put together a sweet little Summer Nights Porch Soiree Party Pack for your next impromptu porch party.


One lucky winner will get:

A drink pitcher, serving tray, 4 plastic tumblers, festive straws with Circus Berry exclusive flags, 2 tea light holders, chip and dip bowls, a set of coasters, pink paper hanging lanterns, a lime patterned towel, an ice bucket, and ice tongs.

I would love to hear what you would fill that pitcher with…sangria, margarita, daiquiri, beer? Do tell!

I am so excited to host my first giveaway and thrilled to have a growing Circus Berry fan-base! To enter, click on the “Rafflecopter Giveaway” link below and follow the prompts. The lucky winner will be notified by e-mail.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Have fun and Good Luck!


**Update–This giveaway is now closed.***

life, miscellaneous

life, in general {mud and margaritas}

May 8, 2013

This past weekend I traveled to Central New York with my kids to visit family and, mainly, to run a mud run with my mother.


Here we are…war paint, matching shirts, ready to get dirty…


Did I say war paint?  Yes.  War paint.  Really.



DnA…Donna & Anne (Someone, ahem, is a little corny.  But great!  But a little corny.  I love it!)

Everything was on the up and up (besides my complaining about getting talked into running through slop and mud, over logs and obstacles, into muddy ponds, all for fun).  Once I got started it wasn’t so bad.  Messy, but not bad.  Then it all came to a screeching halt when I climbed out of a muddy pond after going down a slip and slide to hear my mother panic and tell me she thinks she broke her foot.



She didn’t break her foot.  Even better, she broke her fibula in three places, so she found out after a visit to the ER and orthopedic surgeon.  Needless to say we didn’t finish.  We didn’t get a medal.  We didn’t get our usual celebratory beer.

Why am I sharing this?  Because it was devastating and horribly painful for my mother?  Because I want to share a story of woe?  No.

Because I want to share a story of compassion and love by a toddler and preschooler.  When I told my daughter that she would have to be extra careful around Gramma Donna, that she hurt her leg, and can’t do all the running around and playing she would like (i.e. cartwheels, kickball, etc), her response was, very seriously, “I promise I will take care of her like I always do”.


And my son, all 2 years of him, gently rubbed Gramma’s arm and asked “you ok?”.  He proceeded to ask that for the rest of the weekend as well.

It was so very sweet.  And a reminder of how loving and gentle and caring our little ones can be amidst all of the temper tantrums, yelling, pulling, hitting, “NO”s and overall misbehavior.

I will also share that a broken leg and crutches didn’t stop us from celebrating Cinco de Mayo with some margaritas, sombreros, good food, mustaches, and maracas.






bad, bad, bad

March 22, 2013

So, I skipped Pilates this morning.  Bad.

Dined on a Wisconsin Kringle from Ohlson’s.  Bad.

(But OH so good.)

Slept.  Bad.  Ok, maybe not that bad.  I needed it.

And when I woke up from my cat nap-turned-hibernation state I decided to eat more Wisconsin Kringle.  Bad.


(It is just sitting there, calling to me…Anne, Anne, Anne…)

After all that, my body was screaming for health.

So I threw every vegetable I had on top of a salad.  With some leftover chicken.  Good.



I am not going to point the finger (*ahem*), but this WINTER WEATHER has to GO!  Grey skies and bellow 30 degree temps in the end of March are RUINING my healthy routines!  Even Moira said she “has had it with this cold weather” this morning.  I wonder where she heard that?

Anyone else wrecked by this crummy weather?



lucky shirts {diy}

March 18, 2013

I have rediscovered my love of freezer paper and the endless possibilities for freezer-paper-stenciled-apparel.

I couldn’t resist crafting some custom shirts for St. Patrick’s Day…I mean Lucky Shirts.


In true Ronan fashion, I could only capture him on the run.


In true Moira fashion on the other hand, I was able to get lots of pictures of her.  Posing.  With her toe pointed out (not shown…)

I used my Cricut to cut the pattern but it could also be cut with an Exacto.  Just trace, cut, and iron on with the shiny/waxy side on your fabric.  I also find it helpful to put some freezer paper in between the layers of the shirt.  It keeps the fabric stable and gives a little barrier so the paint doesn’t leak to the back of your shirt.  Dab on your paint, allow to dry, and remove the paper.  You might even put some freezer paper on top of the image once it is dry and give it a quick iron over to set the paint.  Ta-da!  Done.

I used plain fabric paint for the Ronan.  Miss Moira got hers glammed out with some Fashion Glitter Bond (apply it like paint) and some green glitter.  Oooo Sparkly.

I will probably extend my freezer-paper-stencil-shirt-frenzy to Easter too.  Maybe even Dyngus Day.  Oh, wait.  You have never heard of Dyngus Day?  Oh, you must look it up!