Monday, December 11, 2017

home for the holidays

We are slowly settling in to our new home and just in time for the holidays. From adding simple decorations around the house to hosting family and friends, this truly is the most wonderful season. As parents it is so easy to get caught up in the hustle and bustle of buying and the need to find the perfect gift for everyone on your list. As our girls have grown, each year has become more magical. They see joy in each and every detail that this season brings.

Last year, I decided I wanted to guide their focus to the small things and spending time together  rather than the gifts they would be receiving. I created an advent calendar that would give them more than just a piece of chocolate each day. It was filled with family activities, small trinkets, as well as days of showing gratitude and service. This year, while busy with home projects, school and sports, it may be a little difficult to schedule an activity for each night, the days where we are able to be together I know many new and beautiful memories will be made.

Sunday, December 3, 2017

o christmas tree, o christmas tree

O Christmas Tree, O Christmas Tree
How lovely are thy branches.

Our girls could not have been more excited that the day was finally here! We have made it tradition to have one of our first advent activities each year be a trip to the tree farm to pick out the perfect tree. This year was no different. 

As always when on an outing with small children, there was bribery and talks of hot apple cider with cinnamon sticks when all was said and done. We may have even taken them down the aisles of Target to pick out some Christmas decor for their rooms. 

Wednesday, October 18, 2017

Plans for a Modern Bathroom

This is the second bathroom that Brian and I have designed and renovated together. Our inspiration for the space stemmed from the gorgeous basketweave tile floor that was in surprisingly great  condition given the age of the home. We knew we wanted a fresh space with both modern and vintage touches that would tie in the 1940s era of the home. From closing to move-in day we had just over two weeks, so gutting our only full bath right away was definitely a risky decision but once you see these before photos you will know why we decided to be so ambitious!


Demo Day(s) success/ Picking up the pieces/ Dry fit the bathtub:

Monday, October 16, 2017

Hello Beautiful!

Floors. It's all about the floors.

The first time we looked at our house I said the carpet would have to go. We closed on our house at 3:30pm on Friday October 13th, arrived back to the house at 4:45pm and by 7:30pm that same day I had ripped out all of the carpet. I meant business and I don't think my hands have ever ached as bad as they did this weekend. They were bloody, cracked and I could barely hold anything in them, but the floors were totally worth it. We lucked out big time with the condition of them and I can't wait to see them fully refinished!

Before (there was so much taupe!):

Getting there...

Friday, October 13, 2017

We did a thing

We couldn't be more excited to share the news... We bought a house! 

It's our own little fixer upper (watch out Chip and Jo). There are so many exciting things planned and memories to be made within these walls and I can't wait to share it all. 

It has been three years since we have been homeowners and while not having projects each weekend has been nice, we have outgrown our tiny second floor apartment and are ready to get to work. The search was long and hard to find the perfect place to call our own but we finally did it. 

We are looking forward to life at 17 Hawk.  

Monday, October 9, 2017

Field + Supply

It was a balmy 85 degrees yesterday and we stumbled upon this beautiful scene in the Hudson Valley at the Hutton Brickyards. A modern makers craft fair and everything about it was absolutely amazing. Sure, there were some tears shed but we spent the day together and that's what is important. Delicious food, drinks, music, handmade goods and new memories made.

It really was the perfect Sunday.

Wednesday, October 4, 2017

The simple things and pumpkin dreams

Gorgeous fall days are few and far between here in New York. When the weather is as beautiful as it was today, you need to take full advantage.

The older girls were in school and I was home with the younger ones. I decided to buckle them into the car and head out on an adventure. About thirty minutes north of us is the cute little town of Ballston Spa where we stopped and dined al fresco (totally unheard of for NY in October!) at the Iron Roost before finding the most adorable pumpkin stand along the side of the road.

This place was truly what pumpkin dreams are made of. The girls and I walked around admiring the beautiful assortment of pumpkins and gourds before hopping back in the car to get home in time for the bus.  The whole drive home Lidia kept talking about her best day ever and it made my mama heart feel so good..

To them, it really is about the simple things like time spent together.

Monday, July 24, 2017

Weekend at the Blueberry Patch

One of my favorite annual traditions is taking the girls to the orchards for berry picking. It is something that I started when it was just Olivia and I, and it has been fun to add a little more company each year. The girls always look forward to the drive out to the farm and they love to take advantage of all the berries they can eat!

We had been anticipating the annual trip for weeks and the weather finally cooperated for us to go this past weekend. This year was the first year Brian has joined us on our typically "ladies only" adventure but it made it that much more fun (not to mention how nice it was to have some help with the girls). This was also Evelyn's first time berry picking and to say she loved it would be an understatement. If her tiny fists were not full of berries, her mouth sure was!

Wednesday, July 19, 2017

Perfectly Imperfect

I took the girls down to a small local lake that is about a quarter of a mile from our house. I had these visions of the perfect evening and the photos I would capture as the sun was setting. The girls, well, they had other plans.

Within minutes of arriving, they were soaking wet and covered head to toe in sand. They laughed, they played in the sand and they splashed in the water. Getting tired and running out of energy, we walked over to the local ice cream shop and grabbed a few cones (with rainbow sprinkles of course). It was the perfect opportunity to cool down and dry out. On the long walk back up the hill to return home the girls ran ahead and each took turns rolling down the hills.

I realized that this perfect evening that I had envisioned, the one that seemingly wasn't turning out at all like I had planned, was really the girls perfect evening.

I can't wait for them to look back one day at the spontaneous beach fun that was had that hot July night.

Wednesday, June 28, 2017

There's a new boss in town

As a mom of four, finding just the right diaper bag to fit my needs can be tough. Bags are either too big, too small or are difficult to organize.  A few weeks ago, Itzy Ritzy was so kind to send me one of their newly launched Boss Diaper Bags. I am here to tell you that this bag has gone above and beyond my expectations!

I am going to lay it all out for you.

I am loving everything about this mixed material black herringbone and leather. It's simple, modern and something my husband doesn't mind carrying around. Not to mention it wipes down with ease. This is especially important when toting around all of those cups, bottles and snacks that come with leaving the house with four kids. There are bound to be some spills! The exterior boasts seven pockets for all of your quick storage needs and the addition of a tassle clip that I love to hang my keys on when I am on-the-go. Not a fan of all black? The Boss Diaper Bag Backpack also comes in a gorgeous Posy Pop and Coffee & Cream!

As for the inside, just check out these pockets! There are ten of them. That's right! TEN! If you are keeping count this brings your running total to seventeen pockets! No more struggling to find a place to store something. There is literally a place for everything. The pockets are deep enough to hold your diapers, wipes, wallet, sunglasses, but not so deep that things start to disappear. (I'm talking about you random missing hair ties!)

What's a diaper bag without a change pad? This adorable change pad is included with every bag. Yes, I did just call a change pad adorable. Seriously, look how cute this is! Okay, so the fresh baby toes might have something to do with it but the appliqué of "head" on the top and "toes" on the bottom was such a cute addition to this piece.

When it comes to carrying a diaper bag, versatility it is a must in my book and the Boss Bag has got it. No one likes a bag that is constantly sliding off of your shoulder. This is my first backpack diaper bag and I don't think I will ever go back! I love that the Boss Diaper Bag can be worn as a backpack or hung on the stroller for easy access with the included stroller clips. Of course, it can also be stored beneath the stroller as well but then how are you going to show off your amazing new bag?!
 So, have I convinced you yet that you NEED one of these bags?! 

The Itzy Ritzy Boss Diaper Bag Backpack retails for $150
You can shop this amazing bag here, here and (my favorite) here!

Monday, June 26, 2017

Keeping Up

Sweet baby snuggles and sweaty post nap curls. Just of a few of my favorite things about raising four little girls. These last few months have been flying by and I am trying to enjoy every "last baby" moment Evelyn has to give. Every morning she wakes up a day older and a day closer to the toddler years and she seems more interested in keeping up with her big sisters, climbing anything and everything, and growing her vocabulary. 

Oh how I wish I could keep her this small forever.

Wednesday, June 21, 2017

Summer Bucket List

Happy first official day of summer!

Summer is one of my favorites seasons (second to fall of course)! Summertime is filled with trips to the lake, ice cream trucks, walks to the library and of course no school! It was so much fun talking about all things summer with the girls and asking them to list all of the activities they were excited to do before school starts up again in September. With all of the humidity and predicted rain for the coming weeks it will be pretty interesting with all four girls at home but we are more than excited to start checking off this list!

What's on your summer bucket list?!

Monday, June 19, 2017

Puddle Jumpers

Our girls love a good puddle. Dresses, fancy shoes, parking lot puddle... Of course they will find it. With weeks of rain behind us (and several more in front of us) these little puddle jumpers have been craving a good splash. The rain and thunder finally let up today and I am pretty sure their dreams of epic puddle jumping have finally come true.

How did you make a splash this week?

Tuesday, June 13, 2017

Operation: Entryway Facelift

Our small apartment entryway has felt pretty drab since we moved in nearly three years ago. We were renting and planned on that being short term while we were on the hunt for a house. Well, it has turned into quite the "temporary" stay.

The narrow second story hall is all of 12 sq ft. with white walls, dark wood trim/door, and the ugliest of brown/orange carpets. Two dark rectangular mirrors flanked the hall and each carried two hooks for coats/keys.

Over the weekend I decided it was time for a much needed facelift. Of course this facelift needed to keep a few things in mind:

- SMALL budget (under $100)
- No new paint
- No new flooring
- No fixing/replacing trim
- No new lighting

It was going to be no easy task but of course Target and Lowes came to the rescue!

Shopping List:
- New round mirror
- Doormat
- Greenery (low light tolerant)
- Decorative pot

My total came in at roughly $75! The look is pretty minimalist and clean, which I love. The space feels so much brighter and more open without the old rectangular mirrors. A little greenery was the perfect finishing touch. It is definitely so much more fresh and inviting.

Check it out for yourself!

Thursday, May 18, 2017

beat the heat

I love a good smoothie. They probably make my TOP 5 dessert list. Seriously!

A healthy, simple and minimal clean-up treat is a solid win in my book. I thought I would share with you a fun summer favorite of mine and the girls that helps to beat the summertime heat!


3C- Frozen Fruit (mango, strawberry and blueberry)
5C- Unsweetend Almond Milk
1T- Agave

3tsp- Chia (optional)

- Add frozen fruit to blender
- Pour in almond milk
- Add 1T agave
- Blend until it reaches desired consistency. For a thicker     smoothie or smoothie bowl add less almond milk.
- Pour into your favorite cups and voila!

Simple, right?!

It's totally optional but the girls and I love to add a teaspoon of chia seed to the tops of our smoothies as garnish. It's seriously sooo good!

Tuesday, May 16, 2017

Music to my ears

Music is such a big part of my husband's life. Play a tune and I'll bet my morning coffee that he can tell you who sings it. Yeah, he's that impressive. He has so many stories that involve artists, songs, and concerts. I love to hear about the festivals he's attended and he frequently surprises me with who he has had the opportunity to see live. Several of our early dates were even spent traveling to see shows together.

It is no wonder that our girls have the same fondness for tunes. It is important to us to share the music culture with them and as of late, a crowd favorite has been our post nap time vinyl sessions. I let the girls pick out any album to listen to. Sometimes they get up and dance while other times they sit quietly, just listening.

Not to brag or anything but 3/4 of our girls know how to change out a record and I am sure that by 18 months old Ev will be doing the same. It's just in their blood.

This is a tradition that I look forward to continuing as they get older. Helping them to grow their own collections and passing down some of their favorites.

Sunday, May 14, 2017

You made me a mother

I have been mothering for nine years.

It is so hard to believe and even harder to remember what life was like before my girls. Finding my identity as a mother has been a search like no other. Becoming a mother so early in life I never really found myself as an individual so there has been this balancing act between who I am and who I wish to be.

These young ladies have taught me so much about life, love and happiness. I frequently find myself thinking that I should be teaching them about these things and yet I am the one continuously learning from them.

On this Mother's Day I am so thankful for them. Their patience as I learn to parent, their forgiveness for my faults and their unconditional love. Motherhood isn't easy but they make me want to do better everyday. I am so thankful that these young ladies call me mom.

Monday, May 8, 2017

On the night you were born

It has officially been a year since our sweet Evelyn Tate was born in the early hours of May 8th, 2016, Mother's Day. All day yesterday, Brian and I reminisced about this day last year. Here is her story. 

I woke up Saturday May 7th, 2016, 40 weeks and 3 days pregnant with slight lower back pain from yet another poor night sleep and we headed out for a morning at the softball fields. I remember it being so hot and sunny, I could not get comfortable. After the game we took advantage of the beautiful weather and spent much of the day outdoors, dropped Liv off for a sleepover at a friend's house and Brian grilled dinner. Around 5:30pm I started having what I thought were just some more Braxton hicks from being on my feet all day. I was used to having braxton hicks throughout this pregnancy. I remember getting a wave of energy as I started cleaning the house just in case these were more than just braxton hicks. 

By 7:30pm the contractions picked up a little and I had a hunch that this might be the real deal. This was a new experience for us as with our previous pregnancies my water breaking had been the only sign that labor was starting. Brian and I agreed that if the contractions stayed consistent we would give our midwife a call at 9pm. As 9pm rolled around I wasn't fully convinced and we decided to wait a little longer before making the call. At approximately 9:45pm contractions were starting to get pretty close and picked up in intensity so we called our amazing midwife to let her know that it was baby time and our sweet Ev was on her way.

As 11pm approached our midwife arrived. Contractions were getting really close but I was still relatively comfortable and walking around the house hoping to keep things progressing. At midnight, the contractions were every couple of minutes and stopping me in my tracks. I kept my fingers crossed for a quick labor and it seemed to work. Our sweet Ev was born into the loving hands of our midwife, fast and fierce just after 2am. She was perfect. The wave of emotions and adrenaline coursing through my body was nothing like anything I have felt before.

Evelyn, our first year with you has been so surreal. We have cherished every moment and have found so much joy in watching you grow. Happy Birthday baby girl.

Wednesday, May 3, 2017

The Half Moon Market

Thank you to social media for guiding me towards events I wouldn't necessarily have know about!

The good old FB let me know last week that one of my friends was interested in a market in the area where local artisans would be setting up shop for the weekend. I clicked on the event page and immediately thought "these were my people" and I fired off a stream of text messages to my husband letting him know we would be in attendance.

The Half Moon Market was located in an unexplored part of the city for us. We knew there were a lot of local parks in the area but what we found in the historic Washington Park district was amazing. The walking trail, pond, bridges and historic building were nestled into the city almost forgetting the urban setting surrounding it.

Afterwards we headed out to enjoy a cup of coffee and a beer from Superior Merchandise Co. I can't say enough great things about this cute little shop. It is such a gem in the city and I look forward to heading back again (perhaps sans children) to relax on their beautiful patio.

Here are a few of the highlights from our day exploring the city we call home...

Blog Design by Get Polished | Copyright Home and the Homemaker 2017