a must.

would this not be perfect for layla's nursery?

LOVE this etsy shop, but we are doing this room on a dime and i am pretty sure i could maybe make something pretty similar to this myself. i HAVE to try. those little hipster birds need to come live at my house. i give them all the credit for the idea. i could never come up with these things. i am resigned to be "inspired" (re: rip off ideas).

i am all-consumed by the nursery project. the organization of that space and the new sewing area has begun a scorched earth campaign of de-clutter throughout the entire house. i am reorganizing my closet as well now since i put the dresser from the old craft room inside our non-walk-in closet for a better use of vertical space (previous use was for hanging up dresses that just remind me how much i no longer fit into them). however, i can't ever seem to finish the closets and clothes-sorting because layla sleeps in our room i dont want to wake her with all of my hauling and tossing. and also all the huffing about how much my old clothes seem to have "shrunk."

so i want to move her out ASAP. however another stalemate arises. i am finally losing the mom-of-a-newborn adrenaline that gets you through those first months of round the clock feedings and i am getting seriously exhausted from having her in our room all the time. so i am ready and wanting to start her sleeping through the night. i just can't do this anymore with being back at work and never seeming to be able to recover, and she is physically very capable of going 8 hours without a meal. but i can't get more sleep until she has her room. but i never want to stay up after getting home from work and putting them to bed because i am so tired from her middle of the night wake up calls. i'm trapped in an m.c. eshcer drawing.

those little birdies could all come together to lift me out of this exhaustion if they worked together as a flock...


a new old hat

"hat" is one of judah's favorite words. whether it's a headband layla's rocking, a baseball cap jesse has on, or even a wooden dinosaur he's placed on the cat's noggin', judah loves to identify anything on a head as a hat. it's also one of the few words for which his pronunciation is dead on. you get your money's worth out of all 3 letters when judah says "HHHHAAATUH."

in classic judah form, however; he will not wear a hat himself. he constantly asks us to put hats on him just so he can snatch them off. i guess since he was a summer baby he never got used to the feel of them, and so by the time it got cold enough to necessitate them, he was old enough to think, "what the heck is that up there?" and pull them riiiiiiiight off.

even knowing him to be this way, when i spotted this pattern for a PRECIOUS lil' cap i couldn't resist. i made a navy blue one for judah in october, when he was 17 months old. i thought, maybe since it's so very cute, he'll leave this one on his head. surely he'll recognize the cuteness and respect 'dat? (the lighting and look of these pics is ALLLL over the place because i have still no clue how to use our camera)

4 months ago: SUCCESS! (check out that freaking hair, yall. oh man i love it!)

that's more like it. 3 seconds later and off it comes.

his facial response to me saying, "wait, wait, leave the hat on buddy"

so when godparents elliot and lena visited 4 months later this past sunday and judah started asking for a hat, it reminded me that the world (aka lena) had never seen his lil' man cap. so i went and fetched it hoping against hope that he'd leave it on a little longer now since he's almost 21 months now and so much more mature and cooperative.

aaaaand hat's off to you, judah

so we went outside and distracted him from the fun of yanking the hat off by asking him to feed everyone hummus. busy hands, warm and stylish head.

did i mention the hat, diaper and socks were all he was wearing? there was paint everywhere and i liked that outfit, so off everything else went. thank you GA for 70 degree februaries

look at little blonde fievel parking a hummie chip in elliots mouth. love those shaggy sideburns and the way the hats makes his ears stick way out.

perfect delivery!

make sure it's all the way in there by giving a forceful pat

this look says to me, "sure i may be a touch deranged but i'm also cute. like a possibly rabid puppy. worth the risk of petting, for sure"

oh man. classic face of a toddler who learns to smile and say cheese for the camera and the resultant face looks nothing like an actual real smile.

daddy gets in on the hors'd'oeuvres

he wanted SO badly to paint like the big boys so we let him do the back side of the crib headboard (that if you recall was supposed to be spray painted until chemical-crisis 2011 occurred...stressville!)

flippin' presh

walking the worksite

another half cute/half frightening cheeser

i love when in the middle of a conversation judah decides it's time to start identifying body parts. "nohhhhhse"

maybe when we point out eyeballs, we should keep our own eyes on the road so as not to blind folks. just a thought

the boy and his hat: the day they became one.


a golden pause

yesterday was our first golden day as a family of 4. to qualify as a golden day for me, several requirements must be met: being totally relaxed yet wildly productive throughout the daylight hours, spending time outside, eating one nutritionally perfect meal (grilled sesame shrimp and a huge dark green salad) and one dietary wasteland of a meal (popcorn fish balls, waffle fries and triple chocolate bundt cake). a nap must be taken, music played, and the sink emptied at some point during the day. and i must to go to bed before 10:30 pm. bonus points for minimal bra-wearing and maximum vacuuming. well people, yesterday we hit them all.

perfect toesies. lint and all. thank you miss nina for the deliciously precise (seriously, those edges are SQUARE) and super colorful quilt.

not everything has to go exactly as scripted to be included in a golden day. for instance, in a platinum world, the music playing outside as jesse attached our neighbor's old baby seat to his bike for the first time would have been something more like caedmon's call, hem or darius rucker (hootie done went country, y'all), and less like that same neighbor's socially awkward (lifts up shirt to show tubby stomach, "i'm actually getting some abs, look mr. jesse!) 14 year old son's CD entitled, Native Spirits which he forced us to listen to ("it's so relaxing!").

so as he and jesse and judah rolled out of the driveway layla and i were left on our quilt with the chilling soundtrack of a woodflute, rustling leaves and what can only be described as a rabid, screeching eagle in heat blaring from the speakers. it was seriously alarming. my pulse rose and rose as i kept scanning the skies for possessed avians come to snatch layla off to their cliffside lair (fat chance of lifting her, evil winged ones). i looked super cool jamming out to this in our front yard. it was so hilariously embarrassing.

my final review: Native Spirits; perfect for smoking a peace pipe full of peyote in a sweat lodge, not so great for small town, predator-free front yard hippie lounging.

dont' think jesse wasn't wearing a helmet. only justin the neighbor kid refused head gear. i told him i would be very upset if his head got run over by a car, to which he replied, "that's okay miss keight, i've been in a worse accident than that already." i can only assume his totem-spirit guide kept him safe

see? judah couldnt let daddy forget his head protection

luckily they returned after a quick test-drive so jesse could change shoes. i told justin i didn't love the CD and he immediately put in something else (evidently he brought his whole arsenal) that he said i was guaranteed to love: prince's when doves cry. not only is this the most utterly random choice to follow Sounds of the Plains Indians, but also the creepiest song ever. i heard it for the first time on my yellow sony sport walkman in 4th grade and was so confused and alarmed by the words that i still cannot hear it without getting weirded out. 2 for 2, justin! we should have had you deejay our wedding.

perfect 70 degrees. working on her tan. poor thing has my skin tone (re: purple-white). check out those crossed feet. laid-back style, baby.

imperfect musical accompaniment aside, this sunset was the perfect end to our golden day. i work from home on mondays until august when layla will have preschool at church all 5 days a week, and jesse's new job (yup. more on that later) right now has him working at home too. combine that with a presidents day holiday and all 4 of us were home all day, with parents taking turns with the kids and working on job stuff until dinner time. by bedtime my entire view of parenting had been rocked.

stay right here in my arms forever sweetness. with a hint of elvis lip, if you please.

i am in love with the kids' ages right now. judah at 21 months is a constant riot. we are having our first ever conversations with him and are finally starting to be able to entertain him in ways that don't actually destroy our braincells (peekaboo times a google). and layla is hitting the point of baby self-sufficiency where everything is interesting but she can't locomote into dangerous places. at 3 months she is so very laid back and he schedule is booty-rocking and highly predictable. i just want to freeze frame these days and weeks and soak them into every pore of my body. i know that in a blink we will be playing with their kids saying, "wow i can't even remember when judah and layla were this age," and it kills me! drink it in, drink it in, drink it in!

holding on for safety with a half-smile of trepidation

my intense soul-gripping enjoyment of my kids at these particular ages come as somewhat of a surprise to me. see, i have a confession. i didn't really want to be a mom to 2 kids under two as a 28 year old (aka now). of course i love them more than my life, and neither of them was a surprise, but i knew it would be even harder than i thought, and i never really wanted to give up my young newlywedhood for wiping mouths and bums all day. but even more than i didn't prefer that, i DID (and do) want [at least] two kids under 8 when i am 35, so i had to plan ahead. i thought of these little versions of my children as kidvestments into the future family of my dreams.

that. face. ruins. me. is the background actually blurry? i can't tell because i am actually dizzy with love.

so with this "make the best of it now so you can really enjoy yourself later," attitude, imagine my shock to find myself slamming on the brakes amidst choruses of crying and mounds of diapers. coming to the point of complete exhaustion that a working mother of a newborn inevitably reaches, and hearing myself tell jesse, "no, no, you stay. i'll go rock him back down." because he was calling MY name when a bad dream woke him. that tiny "ma-ma," is for me and me alone. judah never knew i wasn't planning on being 110% sold out for this time in his life when he came splashing into my arms, and he went ahead and loved me 110%. layla didn't sign up to be just a tiny bundle of added stress that i needed to work past until she could keep up with the rest of us, she just knows that i'm the only thing that has sustained her for a year and she needs me.

excuse me neck muscles, lay back down and be not so grown up. look at those long high-ponytail hairs growing!

until yesterday, most of my perfect-family visions involved me and jesse and three or four kids in the 5-10 year old range running around at the beach or building a tree fort. well past the days of incoherent tantrums and utter absence of self-sufficiency. even with these two in my sight and arms right now, i saw my greatest days as still ahead of me. "if i can just get her to where she can sit up, think of all the fun we 4 can have, " and "if we can just get to the point where he will tell us a poop is coming rather than when one has landed, think of how much more fun outings could be."

but lately i feel like jesus has been tapping me on the shoulder (aka sucker-punching me in the mouth) saying, "look what you have right now! don't you see where you are at this very moment?" because beyond the truth of, "all we have is today" and "none of our tomorrows are promised to us" i need to throw my full heart into today. yes, any or all of my little family could go to see jesus tomorrow, and that would be wrecking in many ways, but i am almost more alarmed by the future where we are all alive at the end and i realized i missed it. all the good, rich, life-affirming stuff slipped away in the sum total of a million little "if-i-could-just-make-it-until's." i knew it would be that way with pregnancy and, true to form, i already close my eyes when she's wiggling around during a meal and pretend like the kicks are coming from the inside and not the outside.

those eyes. whew. i am done for.

the best gift i can give future-keight is to stop thinking about her and her fictional family altogether (but yall, she is smoking hot, and emotionally healthy and also 3 inches taller, just FYI before we forget about her completely), and be the biggest, (check) baddest (as in goodest) present-keight that i can muster rightthissecond. i know those 5-10 year olds on the beach will have a a lot more fun with a mom who enjoyed years 0-4 and threw her whole heart into them than they would if that mom tried to just show up all of a sudden with no previous experience.

get [back] in my belly! there's still room, promise!

thank you jesus for our golden day. thank you for my family and even more for you. my new mantra is: all of my todays are golden. help me remember.

what makes a day golden for you? besides bralessness, of course. obviously that's on everyone's list.


2 happy's

Happy 100th day on the planet, my sweet chunky lady! Can't believe it's only been three digits worth of days since you've been in our arms, it feels like you've always been a part of this family. Party hard today, but drink responsibly (that means without biting me). Go go, big girl, wachu gon do!
Oh yeah? Since you had to go and get sassy sticking your tongue out at me, I'll one up you and say that today is also your one year conceptionniversary. Ca-chow! Who's smiling now?!? (well, daddy is)


ext. 316?

can someone get god on the line? i need to thank him for these 3. like every second of every day.

bumbo'ing it up at home with dad on my first day back to work

hahah, not a joke. well, the expression is. this is during his insanity workout and a week before he got a haircut he needed a month ago. notice he is wearing a headband.

post-bath kisses (and a baby that is already too long for the bouncer)

super x2

he LOVES when i take these. (also, that pillow is a rogue guest pillow that i took to the hospital and gave birth on. it has worked its way into the lineup despite clashing fantastically)

helping mommy cook always dries the post-nap tears

i'll take her! all day long, baby.

art fail.

favorite candid ever taken of him? probs.

hi little jesse clone, will you be mine?

trying to take her 3 month bday pic. guess who doesn't like the attention off of himself?


it's all coming together

layla's nursery has been given the productivity fast track here in dukesland (i am the duchess of dukesland, btw). we've been going full throttle since monday evening when the first of our supplies made it home. behold some of the sites of our progress:

i can't crochet like the inspiration mommy did, but these are more my style anyway and less hacky sack. love the texture of them and imagining how they'll grab lay's eyes and hopefully not plummet onto her sleeping head.

mabye my favorite part of the nursery. bargain hunting for lots of etsy treasures to make layla's room totally unique and handmade, just like her (well, she's not technically hand-made)

jesse's on solo paint detail since i tackled judah's nursery all by my pregnant self 2 years ago while he was out of town. he does a way better job than me anyhow, you know, using tape and stuff.

since we can't afford the $600 gray oeuf crib in the inspiration room, we'll just krylon the hell out of judah's crib.

je deteste the sea urchin drywall finish on our ceilings. j'adore my husband doing a killer paint job

omg, yall, i am so artsy

eek! love these already. nesting flowers ready to burst into bloom on miss missy's walls

oops. this isn't technically part of the project, but it is the fuel for it. some anonymous church angel gave us this beast plus an amazing meatloaf castle surrounded by a moat of mashed potatoes on sunday. a serving size is 1/21st of the entire thing and each serving is 8 weight watchers points. worth it!

can you feel the anticipation?!?! i can...unless it's just engorgement.


tea time

*my super talented cousin took these pics btw with her mac pimpin daddy camera. She's crazy good.