back to school shopping


It is so hard to believe that the summer is officially over and that my girls started back to school this week!  Back to school shopping has been on my mind so thought I would share what I recently purchased for Miss Bea who will be starting her last year of preschool before heading to Kindergarten 😦  Thinking about that makes me so sad!

So, I’ve always loved having my girls match – which should be no surprise if you see the pictures I post on Instagram.  However, I am changing my tune a little.  I noticed that Poppy didn’t wear a lot of Bea’s old clothing from last summer because she was wearing a lot of the new stuff I bought her to match Bea.  Seems like such a waste especially since Bea’s old summer stuff was SO cute and in great condition!  So, I’m moving forward with only buying stuff for Bea for the Fall and letting Poppy wear Bea’s old clothing.

One thing I did buy them matching were new backpacks.  Their backpacks from last year just got so gross and I wanted to get them something fresh for the school year.

Her bought THESE hot pink LLBean bags and they are so cute.  LLBean even monograms them.  We also purchased the matching lunch box which you can find HERE.


*Storage bins can be found HERE.



I know the beginning of the school year they will still be able to wear their summer clothing but since Bea has literally no clothing that will fit her when she’s finished with that stuff – I thought I would preemptively buy her some cute Fall items.  See below 🙂

Ruffle neck top – find it HERE.  I bought this in the rainbow and in the navy.  So cute with leggings and their cord leggings (see below)

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Cord leggings.  Find them HERE.

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How cute is this ladybug tunic?  Find it HERE

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I also purchased this floral top – so cute with the above cord leggings.  Find the top HERE.

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One last thing that I love from our order is this cotton tunic dress.  Super easy with or without leggings.  Find it HERE!

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Happy shopping!



favorite gift


I know it’s been forever but I wanted to pop in with something I’ve had a lot of questions about.  I posted a picture of this small pillow that lives in my room.  What makes it so special is that it says “love, dad” in my Dad’s handwriting.

When everything happened with him, she sent this to my sisters and me.  I forget how she got his exact handwriting but this is my most loved and cherished gift.  The most thoughtful thing I’ve ever received, actually.

Here is the link where she purchased.  A great gift idea for someone you know struggling through a loss.

Find it HERE.





my third year without you…

My third year without you I missed you.

I missed you so much.  I missed my center.  I missed the top of my totem pole.  I missed my call for all important and unimportant things.  I missed your warm smile, your huge hugs that automatically made my feel like I was 8 years old again.  I missed your approval and my drive to make you proud of me.  I missed you.  I miss you.  Every single piece of me misses you.

My third year without you I didn’t cry as much.

The first two years after losing you I would constantly feel this rush of grief and it would be tipped off at the slightest of things.  I would burst into tears no matter where I was, who I was with, and what I was doing.  This past year that changed dramatically.  I found the right times to cry and release the pressure that built up from losing you and missing you.  The pressure was strong, frequent, and unbearable at times but I was much better about managing it.

My third year without you I felt grateful.

My third year without you I felt less cheated and more grateful for the time I had with you.  I felt grateful that I had you as a pillar of all things I aspired to be.  I felt grateful for our one-on-one time walking the beach in longboat and I was grateful to carry on that tradition with my own girls.

My third year without you I worried.

I worried that my kids would not know you.  I worried they wouldn’t hear your laugh, feel your hugs, and see the love you had for them.  I worried that you weren’t here to walk beside me as continued to make decisions for Bea’s health.  I am realizing that you’re in the best place possible to help her. To help me.

My third year without you I did things to make you proud.

Your door in our yard got a lot of use and I know you’d be proud that Pappy left treats and toys every so often there.  I know you’d be proud that Jordan & I choose you each Christmas to be the giver of the “big gift” – this year you got the girls a pink bike to share.  And they were so grateful to you.  I know you’d be proud that Bea talked about you often – made up stories and told Poppy of all the things she and Pappy did together.  I know you’d be proud that when I had an extremely hard day recently and didn’t explain why to the girls – that they hugged me and Bea said “I miss Pappy too”.   I know you’d be proud that they know you.

My third year without you I talked to you.

I talked to you every single day.  I was always the talker in our relationship and that hasn’t changed.

My third year without you I felt close to you.

I felt you the day Louise Kelly was born.  I saw you in her eyes and felt so close to you knowing you were with her before I was – holding her until she was delivered to me as a healthy, sweet baby.  I felt close to you at church.  I felt close to you in Longboat.  I felt close to you when I held my girls before bed.  Instead of waiting for signs from you, I chose to find you and see you in Mimi, Carolyn, Mom, Jordan, Dan and Zack.  I found that things they each do remind me of you and I let it lift me up.  I saw you & felt close to you through them.

My third year without you I lived what you taught me.

I listened to my conscience.

I developed strong character.

I was courageous.

My third year without you I survived.