Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Hello June.

Can you spot the kid in ballet whose mom couldn't find any clean white socks today? Yeah, she's mine.


Thank you for all the thoughtful responses on the last post. It prompted such a great discussion, and it was so interesting to read all the comments/e-mails regarding dealing with these same kind of issues with your own kids. And yes--little kids, little problems; big kids, big problems. Some of you are dealing with really good kids (who have really good parents!), and you're facing other problems with your kids--stolen happy meal toys times twenty: riding in cars with friends who've been drinking, smoking pot at a party. They are real problems, and there isn't a foolproof guidebook for how to handle them. Your insights were enlightening and, as always, I am grateful for an online community that embraces opportunities to share not only the great moments, but the challenging ones too. There is something about relating to others that is both comforting and fueling, especially when it comes to the daunting role of raising kids.


With that said, more than one person commented that the item of choice they stole when they were young was puffy stickers of all things. Which only confirms what I thought to be true: puffy stickers are so badass.

After perusing the comments, I remembered something. My own "stealing" encounter when I was young. Ironically, it was Sunshine Bible Book Store in Flint, Michigan. I was tagging alongside my mom who was searching for sheet music--something new to sing in church, and while she practiced some great rendition of Sandi Patty's latest, I combed through aisles of flannelgraph and Love is Patient plaques. And then I saw it--this super cool light blue eraser in the shape of a chunky pencil. I put it in my pocket. Yes, in a Bible book store. I put the eraser in my pocket, knowing I'd "forget" about it later. And I did. Until, a few hours later, standing in my Aunt Karen's driveway, I reached into my pocket and found it. I pulled out the world's coolest eraser--the one that I stole before the eyes of God in a Bible Book store--and looked at it. You know what it said? It was freaking engraved with the words "Jesus loves you." Swear. I felt so guilty, my cheeks turned red, I chucked it in the bushes, and I memorized three new Bible verses for Sunday School that week--and not just for the Jolly Rancher prizes either. That was the end of my stealing days.

Our Weekend:

It's almost summer and while the snowbirds fly back home, leaving our town with quieter streets and vacant tables at the best restaurants, I am looking forward to more sunsets, impromptu barbecues, sparklers, bonfires, s'mores, lemonade and catching up with friends.



Good Food
We're making a conscious effort to put more into our dinners. More time, more thought, more enjoyment. Sunday night, it started with homemade sangria and followed with dog-earring recipes, running to the grocery store and returning home to a candle-lit kitchen. I sipped my glass in intervals--between shifting from the flour covered counter to the vegetable strewn island, silencing timers, stirring, chopping, tasting. It was fabulous. There will be more of this.


Eve to June
Pre-summer rituals are warming up.


Yes, summer seems to perpetually dwell here, but I can't help but need some psychological shift to feel the nostalgic link to everything I loved about my childhood summers. More bare feet and brown shoulders, more popsicles, more coconutty scents of sunscreen. And while the grass may not always be greener on the other side, it certainly is softer. We try to ignore the fact that our grass is not soft but bristly, and focus rather on our stately palms and jaw-dropping sunsets.




Lainey loves on Nella now like we pay her for every kiss.

Ballet started as an outlet for Lainey to feel special--something just for her. It's turned into such a confidence-building, poise-developing experience for her. We've met new friends, learned how to curtsey, overcome performance anxiety and discovered a new repertoire of updos for fine cornsilk hair that barely stays gripped in a ponytail holder.


She was a fluttering little bird for her second recital.


This time, she was not shy. She didn't search the crowd to find us before unleashing her confidence or wander her attention to her friends, analyzing their toe taps and twirls. She looked only to her teacher, following directions, copying her every move.


She had posture and poise and only glanced away from the teacher once--not to find her daddy this time, but to smile at her mom. That's me.


The dam to the tears broke as soon as the first little group of girls walked out and started twirling, and Lainey wasn't even in that group. The woman standing next to me was crying too, so I didn't feel so bad. While there are trillions of everyday moments to swoon over your kids, there's something about watching performances that spins a different perspective on the privilege of raising children.


You're just overwhelmingly proud. When they score a goal, make a basket, land a jump, receive a medal, nail the perfect pliẻ, and then bow, curtsey and look to make sure you're watching? That's my kid, everyone. That's my kid.


We concluded our holiday weekend with friends on the beach last night.


Venturing a little farther south for a more picturesque beach, we arrived at Lowdermilk Park at low tide. Holy Vivid Sky, did it deliver.


An isolated storm far out in the gulf delivered an entertaining show--right under the massive cloud that hid the sun but generously spilled over what it couldn't contain.

The tide pulled back appropriately for a shallow playground of reflective wet sand the width of a football field, and Lainey and her friend Aleena ran and splashed like the boys in the opening scene of Chariots of Fire, minus the manly grimaces and determined strides, and with way cuter bathing suits.


Nella was purely content, happy to have her own natural wading pool where she could shimmy along, slosh puddles, eat sand and increase the weight of her diaper tenfold.



I, of course, was repeating the High-on-Life Creed which I haven't quite perfected but includes some grateful words about this moment and mental notes to grasp it all--the sounds, the sights, the smells, the way my kids are so actively embracing their surroundings. Once I have the hand clap and corresponding cartwheels to support the Creed, I'll apply for registered trademark.


I love that our beaches are different every time we visit. The tides, currents, winds, seasons--it changes the landscape, the shells, the sealife. My dad says our beaches are like TJMaxx. You never know what you're going to find, but most times, it's good.

A beach encore to the ballet recital

As the sun settled to sleep for the night and southern clouds flickered with lightning, we celebrated the remainder of the holiday with candles and sparklers.


When I moved here, I promised myself I would never become desensitized to the wonder of where we live. I would never take our short jaunt to the gulf for granted or fall victim to the laziness that has so many natives pausing to remember their last visit to see a sunset or feel the sand. I'm happy to say I've lived my promise.


But there are others I've neglected. Things I've wanted to learn, hobbies I've planned to take up, habits I've hoped to tackle. Today is June 1--a new month, a new season--and I'm yearning to embrace a new challenge. I'd love for you to join me in tackling something that's been on your mind. An empty wall you've been meaning to decorate, a project you've been hoping to finish, the last five pounds you've promised yourself to lose. I've picked up running and dropped it many times, and I'm vowing for the month of June to lace up my running shoes every single day. Not necessarily an exhausting breathless run every time, but at least a short jog around a couple blocks to feel the endorphins, to accept the challenge, to prove to myself I can consistently face a task. I will run every day of June, and I'm excited to have a few new running friends joining me. We're making it interesting, keeping it fun. What will you do this month? What will you tackle and how will you do it? Please share in your comments, and later this month, there will be an opportunity for you to share some photos and stories of your successes on this blog.

Amy Poehler recently gave the commencement speech to Harvard's Class of 2011, and while very funny, it held some poignant truths:

"Be open to collaboration. Other people and other people's ideas are often better than your own. Find a group of people who challenge and inspire you. Spend a lot of time with them, and it will change your life. No one is here today because they did it on their own. ...take your risks now. As you get older, you become more fearful and less flexible..."

Running every day, finally slapping paint on those bedroom walls, losing those five pounds, making it through a few nights of primitive camping, setting up the guitar lessons--they are all small challenges in the grand scheme of things. But tackling small challenges leads to overcoming larger ones, and sharing the conquest with others makes it more attainable, and definitely more fun.


If you conquer, I'll teach you the High-on-Life Creed. And the hand clap.

It's a new month. Do something fabulous.



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Megan said...

I don't know why I never thought to ask this before, perhaps I'm always too distracted by the beauty of your pictures, the life that exudes from your words....but being outside so much, and in the water so much, what sunscreen do you use on your babies? We're headed to florida in a week and I'd LOVE to know!!

carlotta said...

your weekend sounds like perfection. the way you weave photographs and text together is so enchanting -- I look forward to each time you post. and I lovelovelove when you post photos of Lainey at ballet -- she is entirely too precious.

Nic said...

Fabulous photos
Gorgeous girls
Inspiring as always... I'm going to FINALLY book those sewing lessons

Nicole said...

I grew up in FL, my family still lives there, but I've never seen it with so much beauty as you do - and as you capture in your photos. Thank you for showing me the light!

That last pic, of Nella in front of the colored block wall, made me tear up. I don't know why, but her face, that smile! her eyes! it's perfection!

Alzbeta said...

I'm going to do less procrastinating, more getting things done and more walks with my little one who tries to put the snuglie on herself so we can go out.

about said...

thankyou Kelle - your words and stunning photos always leave me feeling so privileged to be a mom and experience the wonder that so many of these fleeting moments are with my daughters.

I often avoid the "popular" blogs, but yours is such a gem that I keep coming back. keep writing, it makes a big difference to so many.

Katy said...

I am going to take this month just to find out more about myself.

Theresa said...

Ha. Funny, the end of this post... About June resolutions... Many of our resolutions are the same. I've been making sad attempts at cardio for almost two months now. I usually average 2-3 times a week. I'd like to do Monday-Friday, but maybe I'll get ambitious and try to follow your lead and tackle every sweet June day...

Shedding five to ten pounds would also be nice ;)

Also... I *LOVE* pictures of your girls together. It reminds me that I need to capture moments between my two girls together much more often.

Beautiful :)

Gareen said...

Ah, this story had me in tears from start to finish. I remember my mom crying when I played a piano recital, graduated middle school, and got accepted to college. It always made me uncomfortable, but now I see how immensely proud of me she was every step of the way (even when my accomplishments were mediocre). I love that I got emotional looking at your kids' milestones. Your outlook on life is so inspirational and very helpful when things are looking bleak in my world. Thanks a lot! And Lainey is surprisingly VERY graceful for her age. Awesome!

NickandCaeli said...

I stumbled upon an old post of when you did a bathroom makeover with all the fun colors... so great! Just wondering... what are some of your favorite products?! Bubble bath, hand soap, perfume, etc... I love hearing what beauty products others love!

Nancy K. said...

I'll make two resolutions for June ~ first, I will exercise everyday. Not necessarily for long, but I WILL exercise each and every day. Second, I WILL get my house cleaned and prepared for showing. I want to sell it by the end of July.

Please, send positive thoughts my way!!!

Lesli Temple said...

Your browned little beauties make me yearn for the summer sun! Can't wait to spend the summer outside with my littles!

Hailey said...

I remember seeing parents get all teary at my little sister's recitals. Now that I have a kid? I so get it. :)
I was looking forward to this post with Lainey's recital! She's such a pretty tiny dancer. She looks like she's graceful. :) And Nella in the sand was too precious.

As for my June resolution? Get serious and lose these last 5-10 lbs. I've realized it's going to take more than just cutting out the cookie-a-day. Gotta do some cardio, weights, and eat a few more salads. Here's hoping it works! :)

ps. Thanks for posting. I've had a terrible headache, and this made me forget about it at least for a few minutes.

The Mommy Therapy said...

I so very much love the photo of Lainey kissing on Nella. Beautiful.

Oh the list of avoided challenges is long. I feel I spend so much time trying to write and grow my blog. I guess what I really avoid doing though is trying to write for something else. The fear of rejection is deeply rooted in me and I would love to overcome my idea that if I write something and no one wants it, I failed.

I'm in. For June I challenge myself to submit a piece to at least three publications big or small. The journey and joy of trying is most of the reward, right?

Good luck with the running. I've been trying to do that too and it feels amazing!

FEAS613 said...

My goal is to not take the gulf coast and its glorious sunsets for granted either... So far I've stuck to it - all five weeks!! =)
I love your dad's comparison of the Gulf to TJ Maxx!! It's so true. The water was smooth as glass tonight and near silent. I watched as a father and his two kids found sand dollars by the handful and conch shells galore.
And the sunset was almost as good as last nights!! I love Naples =)


shellycoulter said...

I'm going to finally,after living here 2.5 years, decorate my big living room wall. I just found my inspiration on Pinterest! Going to just go for it! :)

Yay for running. Just ran the BolderBoulder yesterday. It was awesome! :)

The Perks of Life! said...

Holy smokes you inspire me. Seriously, reading your words is magical. You once came to Park City, UT, where I live, and talked about the high you got from driving in the mountains. I'm pretty sure I could live in Florida and get the same feeling everyday from the majestic sunsets. Thanks for sharing the picture... and your thoughts.

Michelle Ott said...

I never do stuff like this. But here goes - I will join your month of June challenge. I have wanted to drop 5 pounds for a long time. I know I can do it, but haven't wanted it enough. Now I just want to know that I can follow through.

Oh, you have to try a reusable swim diaper! They don't retain water - just keep in poop! I have a cloth diaper store in Canada and so many non-cloth diapering moms use them.

JAQY said...

Just your description of Lainey's recital made me tear up! The remembering exactly how that feels; the first time I saw my (now almost 9 year old) sing in a performance...

I've been challenging myself and not following through since January 1... but this month, I'm putting on my big girl pants and moving in with the boyfriend (and merging our kids). SO in the spirit of new beginnings, I'm challenging myself to get organized! This place is a disaster! Then next month I can start on my projects again :D

Life with Kaishon said...

OK : )
I will do something grand during the month of June. I can't believe it has been june for 1 hour and 6 minutes already.

mmariemk said...

Nella tasting salty sand filled beach water...priceless! And HIL-A-RIOUS!
Ya know...reading your blog has truly changed my life. You inspire me everyday and remind me to live my life.
This month I want to turn my ugly, overgrown,dead, backyard into a sanctuary. I want grass, and butterfly attracting plants and a pond for my girls to explore. I started working on it today and have the blisters on my hands proving just how long this month might be :)

tristadawn said...

long-time (ish) reader, first time commenter. I love the way you write so eloquently, so beautifully. I've been feeling very inspired lately, and this just fueled that even moreso. I'm thinking of starting the 'Couch to 5K' running program. I've never run a day in my life. June seems like a good month to start.
Beautiful photos and words as always.

M.T. said...

Lainy's arabesque is wonderful!

My goals for June are to survive our transatlantic move with the kids, add email support to my first app, and comment on blogs more ;)

b13192ac-4944-11e0-b68d-000bcdcb2996 said...

I can't wait to see Nella in gymnastics (wink, wink, nudge, nudge) I feel a kin to her I never expected to. I ate sand when I was a baby, I turned out just fine. And did gymnastics. My sister was the ballerina in our family :]

I'm going to conquer getting over not one, but two boys who don't deserve me. And getting my wisdom teeth out, by being put out! haha no way would I survive that any other way. Also a friend is giving me motorcycle lessons. It's going to be a great month.


Soaking Up the Happy Life... said...

I so am going to try to get on the treadmill everyday in June. I've been meaning to and have started it before only to become lazy again. This time I need to start walking off the weight and keep on going! Somewhere in between there will be some paint being spread on my walls....:)

Katy said...

So inspiring :). I am a huge fan of your family and your blog!

You know, I have heard that June
1st really is "2nd Chance at New Year's Resolutions Day". I think I'm hopping on the running bandwagon too. I've been running about 3 times a week, but I'm going to run every day this month! So excited. Thank you for your encouragement!

Ruth said...

I LOVE Lainey's polka-dotted 2-buttoned suit. must.have. Please please PLEASE tell me it's an online store or something where I can also purchase one. Also, how cute are you to dress Nella up in a ballerina ensemble!!

Peeper said...

Hurrah for running! A friend once told me after a terrible personal loss to "keep running". Best advice I've ever gotten. The rhythm of my foot-fall coupled to my breath is my meditation and my church.

My mom lived in Naples - out towards Golden Gate, ironically (I live in San Francisco). I remember her celebrating in little ways when the "snow birds" left town.

I think I'll use June to reconnect to some dreams. Our family is ready to move on at last: residency is over. Hallelujah! We aren't moving far...there is still fellowship to get through but even still, hallelujah! We are getting closer :)

Kelly Cach said...

*Now I want a cupcake!
*You totally deserve to have bragging rights: Lainey has the best form in ballet :)
*Love the single speck of polish on Nella's edible toe.
*And sisters in the pool.....whoosh! Lots of emotions evoked here. I should take more pics of my boys with Nora....you'd think we payed them as well!

For June? I will be sewing. Little tiny skirts for Nora. This is huge, as my husband has to thread my bobbin...hahaha! I've never sewn anything before, but HE took "Clothes Make the Man" as a high school elective...that makes me laugh every time I say it!

Happy June resolutions,

Tracy said...

ok.. I take the challenge... some movement every day.. and I'm going to record it on endomondo so I can hold myself accountable. (endomondo app for droid). I'm the momma of 2 adult kids. I am proud of them each and everyday and I get teary eyed just watching them "BE".. Mommas are great!


love this. you are so inspirational. in words and in imagery.

B's Mommy said...

Splish! Splash! Everyone should be as Happy as that!!
(swim pics)

B's Mommy said...

Color outside the lines...
Your words inspire and stir up emotions in me, I had forgotten. Truly thank you.

Jenna84 said...

Kelle, Your writing is such an inspiration! I started my first blog not long after finding yours, and it's been such a gift! For June I think I will finish painting the bedroom I started a year ago.... that one wall is looking pretty lonely! Happy June :)

Natalie said...

The sister pics make me think of my boys together, so precious.
Hmmm...what to be ambitious about in June? This will be fun!

Katillia Marie said...

I love your blog! You are soo real, and your blogs feel alive! We are moving at the end of June so I will be spending each day of June getting more organized, and I made a vow to make my own coffee at home in the morning instead of making a trip to starbucks;)

Just Trying Not to Blink .... said...

I'd say I'll lose those last five pounds this month (or make that 10, ahem...), but that would be just too predictable. Instead I will vow to have a special one-on-one moment with each one of my three little girls everyday, even if it is just a few minutes, where we really connect, just the two of us!

amf72 said...

Love love LOVE your blog Kelle! Thank you for sharing some of your life and loves for us. You are so inspiring :)

Enjoy the start of your summer - today is the 1st day of the Aussie winter and it's wet, windy and cold here. Good snuggling weather!

just jen said...

i'm stretching to reach this challenge. it's a bugger though. i love your vibe and would kill for some of your Zen mama groove. but on this side of the island, the challenge is for the basics. like breathing. but i'm stretching...so thank you for inspiring an extra inch towards sunshine.

big love...

Rheyanan-lee said...

Those girls of yours are growing up fast! Nella looks bigger with every post you write :) I too have skipped out on a few of my 'physical' goals and i want to start running around our block. I wish i could run with you but were a few thousand miles apart. I'll be running with you in spirit!

Tahnie said...

You can FEEL Lainey's love for Nella through your photos. LoveloveLOVE.

In June?
In June I will finally decorate my front living room wall with a fantastic polaroid heart of our sweetest memories.
I will also finally FINALLY find the courage to finish writing Sookie's birth story.

Megan said...

Love your Dad's TJMaxx comment! I'm still contemplating my June tackle, but I love the idea! Thanks, as always for the inspiration and go girl, go with the running! I have a mind movie of Dori in Finding Nemo cheering you on, "Just keep swimming, just keep swimming (running, in your case)!"

LouBoo said...

Hi Kelle, I am sure I have said in comments before, you are soo soo lucky to live where you live. The beauty just makes my heart ache. I know we all have parts of our habitat that are wonderful; but it seems that yours delivers on so many levels! Even with spiky grass. The recital looks wonderful and I agree; watching your child is one of the purest jolts of parental pride, just precious. Lou x

Averyl Minori said...

I am finally going to knit my man a pair of socks!!

jeshiko said...

We are going to start cycling as a family. We have 3 boys and one of them has special needs so I am currently sorting out baby bikes seats an all that jazz. That is going to be our thing this Winter (it's the first day of Winter here).

PS I love the way Nella sit with her legs out sooooo wide - too cute!

Libby said...

My goal for June? Sew every weekend. My next few weeks are going to be filled with exams and assessments, so I'm trying to find stress-busting, zen-finding and productive things to do.
Anyway, as always it was a lovely post! Whenever one of your posts comes up on my blogger dashboard, I smile. Whatever I read here, it always makes me want to run outside, embrace life, and then drive to the nearest beach.

Deb_in_oz said...

My June goal is to get my business started and launch my blog.

can you share your sangria recipe - wuld love to make some!!!

Angella said...

PREACH sister!! Amazing post...

My Secret Rooms said...

LOVE the post!
I philosophized over my life, post finding your blog, and it absolutely hit me: it has changed my life.
Sounds pretentious, huh?
True, nonetheless.
It has made my life, my photos, my marriage and my motherhood even better.
That's something.

What I'll do in june?
I'll _continue_ my five days a week of jogging (there's something to be said for keeping things up also!) I've been doing if for over a year now :-)

Funnily my blog post of today says that I'll start a brand thing: making every breakfast moment a "Hotel de la Anna"-moment with soft music, candles, napkins, juice and The new Yorker in the iPad.
So, I'll promise it here aswell!!

Thanks Kelle, for all you do.
Thanks for changing my life :-)

Team Lando said...

1. How is it June? I keep writing 2010 on all my stuff at work!

2. I would maybe be tempted to steal puffy stickers NOW... provided they weren't from the Bible store! :)

3. I'm glad you appreciate your beaches. As one who gave up SoCal for DC, I appreciate the beach much more now.

4. I love Nella's little suits. Getting more for Ellie this week.

5. JUNE: (And this is why I think we should hang out) I'm working on planning better meals and running! For real. Not fancy meals, just better. And not running every day, but I'm hiring a coach, so I can be badass when I do run!

Cookie's Sandwich said...

I love the idea of a new start to take on a new challenge. Back on January 1st I decided I was going to do something brand new each and every day for the year. Some are simple and fun and others are complex and life changing. Either way, I make the rules and let the universe guide me at times. I push if I know I need it and take it easy if my spirit is weak. I then blog about it. It has been an amazing experience. 2010 was a rough year and 2011 needed to wipe the cobwebs away. So I will join in with your challenge within my own and do something big today. Thanks for the always inspiring tales...your blog is always my favorite little moment of me time!!!

Guy & Jennifer said...

Kelle your blog is one of the highlights of my week. I am a stay at home Mom w/4 littles age 6 & under..helping my hubby navigate his way back from a head injury. I sometimes lose perspective. But your pictures & your blog help me back away from that emotional ledge. Instead I find myself on a treasure hunt for my own silver lining. For that I thank you! As for the ADORBALE navy swimsuit that Lainey is wearing? Details please!

Lesley said...

3 things...
1. I am starting running too. My Dad loved to run and after he passed away I vowed to run too. To feel connected to him in some way. To know why he loved it. Maybe I'll love it too. I started last week and it is slow going. Must persevere. Will think of you not giving up and that will keep me going!
2. Lainey's friend on the beach has the world's most perfect braids! That is what I yearn to do with my 3 year old's wispy strands...it just doesn't look the same.
3. The picture of Nella licking the sand needs to be framed. That is the most beautiful, genuine picture I have seen. I love it.

- x - from Switzerland Mummy

Helen said...

I am going to finish my pillowcase dresses I am working on. And I am going to go for a walk everyday!
That's quite hard in the United Kingdom, when it tends to rain.... quite a lot. But rain or shine, I will wrap my little gremlin (my awesome daughter hehe) up nice and snug and just venture out.

We are soon to be moving to California! So I too am looking forward to walking on the beach and seeing the worlds most wonderful sunsets!

Beautiful post, as always. Keep smiling. =)

Alaythea said...

That picture of Nella laying on her belly licking the sand/water is SO cute!!!

Liane said...

I know I say this all the time but you're so inspirational. If I'm having a bad day then I know to come here!

June? I think I'll tackle my house.. The cupboards that are over following, the draws that are buldging, the skirting boards that are covered in dust.. The clutter! Oh my the clutter! All the little things that I keep putting off but get me down.. If I use the month of June and do a bit each day then my house should be sparkling in no time! xx

LaurenAllysia said...

My friend and I have been reading your blog together for a few months now. Every day one of us runs into work asking "Did Kelle post anything?" We talk about you like you're one of our besties, so just so you know, two women from Kentucky think they're besties with you.

Anywho...this month, I vow to dance every day. I do this for two reasons: to relish in the joy dancing brings me and to grow as an artist. You energy and life inspire me. =)

And those babies are amazing!

Kate said...

Last week I started a 40 day challenge with myself. 40 days of exercise (that is the easy part) & 40 days of eating breakfast.. That is the challenge, week 1 is complete & a success.

Brighton said...

June: I will be going to trainings, testing, reading, and learning. Transitioning from 5th grade teacher to 3rd grade teacher in the fall. June will be a month of learning for me : o )

July, however, will be a month of home, kids, photography, cooking & books!

Mihaela said...

My goal is to Feng-Shui-ize at least two rooms in our house. In fact I started already this past weekend. I'm totally excited about the playroom mini renovation - painting the walls in sunny-side-up yellow and putting some cool wallpaper on one wall (http://www.landofnod.com/kids-wallpaper/kids-room-decor/frames-wallpaper/f4884).

Christy said...

Your post is SO very timely...thank you! June is going to be a great month!

Alissa said...

Happy National Running day to start your month of running! Good luck....it's a great time to reflect!

Dot said...

You inspire me and that's just one of the reasons I love you so much!

gabbygrace said...

I love your posts, words and inspiration! Tic tacs, hard to steal and harder to hide, lol busted and returned with an apology to the store manager, future felony averted!! I love daily challenge yourself goals, I am going to pledge to really clean my kitchen, floor swept, counters spotless, every day, shallow...true, but makes me feel good!! And with 72 and sunny here now, I am already loving every minute with the kiddos, so good to get some mr clean time in as well!

Elena said...

I have two things I'm trying to improve in my life. One is easier than the other. I have been studying my Mamarazzi book and I am determined to get some really good photos of my kids... even if I have a simple camera.

My other goal is much harder. I had two miscarriages in the past year and I need to shed the weight gain from the hormone insanity and move on.

Thank you for your inspiration.

Babs said...

Two things first: How pretty Nella's eyelashes are! They're showing more lately, like her big sisters. And oh Kelle, that storm/sunset! Makes me miss Florida so!
Okay, here's something I've been meaning to try ever since last May when I moved to my house: The laundry room is currently painted a garish green...so garish I must keep the door closed to avoid eye strain...BUT! It also has the cutest border (I know...stupid, but I love it). This month I will get myself some tiny square brushes and outline that adorable border & the rest of the room (with regular brushes and rollers) in primer and then paint it. A pretty shade of pale blue. And I will feel SO accomplished! Thanks for the inspiration.

Kelle said...

Michelle Ott: Just found one of those diapers at Whole Foods and LOVE it! Way easier.

Ruth: Yes, you can get Lainey's suit online! Land's End Kids.

My Secret Rooms: Hotel breakfast. Love.

Bonnie said...

In June I have signed up for a 5K at the end of the month and have been running 4 times a week. This is huge for me as I usually don't run unless I am being chased :)

It was on my bucket list and I hope to accomplish this goal!

Lisa said...

June is going to be a good month for us...preparing for our month long trip to Italy the end of the month!!! Traveling with 2 little ones is always an adventure.
Love the pictures, love the suits, love your words. You are so inspiring and I just love checking in on you and your beautiful family!
Happy June!

Jenn said...

I adore the picture of Lainey kissing Nella! It reminds me of my oldest daughter and her baby brother. Those kisses do more for us moms than our sweet babies know.

In June, I will continue to work at gathering my feet under me and standing on my own as a single mom, knowing that it is all going to work out for the best, despite being knocked on my tush 4 months ago. (not literally!)

I'm also going to create a "team" in honor of my sweet 10 month old son who has an extra "magic" chromosome. The Buddy Walk will be here before I know it. I've been contemplating this for months...thanks for inspiring me to do it!

Jessica said...

My goal is to practice my photography! And you inspire me in that area :)

Also love your running shoes! I have been thinking of taking it up as well & saw those shoes in the store. They are so cute! Please let us know how they are. Good luck!

Southern Gal said...

Ballet + little girls = teary eyes every time. When my granddaughter starts in a few years I think I'll just melt.

The challenge is a good one. I've wanted to create a gallery wall in my living area for the longest time. I kept saying when summer gets here. Well it's here so I believe I shall begin work on it. Thanks for the kick in the pants to get it started.

Oh, and I've been running for two months and haven't lost a single one of the pounds I've tried to shed. Not one stinking pound. But I'm keeping it up because I can actually run to the mailbox (a long way) and back without panting like a dog!

Happy summer to you.

thetaooftulips said...

Wow- I'm always wowed by your photos and where you find the time in your day- but this collection just had me drooling to nibble those sun-kissed and sandy shoulders. Each one a portrait! Lovely! Maddie had her 2nd ballet recital earlier this month as well- and we saw the same confidence shining. It was shocking the difference a year made. While there was still a little looking for us in the rehearsal-she sailed through the recital itself and I swear I could hear her pure voice 400 people away!

Laura said...

Beautiful, love all the photos! I pulled a full blown "LOL" moment when you said you memorized 3 bible verses to relieve your guilt- how did you see into my childhood?! Love them midwestern church going fundamental background! :) (on a side note, have you ever read any of Garrison Keeler's books? You'd love them!!) So- here is my BURNING questions. What is your "recipe" to achieve the black and white look in the ballet photos? I am a light room 3 user, and I have been trying to figure that out! Thanks!!

Amanda said...

Your stealing story last post and your one this post reminded me of a scene with my son a year or so ago.

At the time that this happened, I had already imagined him in an orange jumpsuit many times (and he was only 5). We were heading home from church and I asked him what he learned at church that day. "I learned that stealing is okay because people will forgive you and God loves you no matter what." I remember turning to my husband, seeing if he had heard what I just had. We asked him again, Oh, what did you learn today? He repeated it word for word. I remember thinking, great this just confirms my worst fears. I laugh at the chunky pencil eraser story as I think had Keenan stole it and saw those words, it wouldn't make him feel guilty but rather confirm what he thought he learned at church!

Luckily we haven't had any stealing incidents and I see him in that orange jumpsuit less and less, and that's why I can look back on these stories and laugh, for now.

Sarah said...

Love, love, love these pics! So much beauty! What will I do with this one wild and wonderful June? Try to fill everyday with fun and wonder for my little love. Try to take more walks and eat more salads. Fun stuff like that....LOL

Hanna said...

I am new in Florida, and it feels like a constant vacation here! it is crazy insane, and I still can't believe I can go to the beach often!!!
I like the new month, new challenge... my challenge will be to get certified in Pilates Reformer, I have a lot to study for my test and I have been procrastinating for months! so, June will be my month! thks 4 the inspiration... I will tell you how it goes...
Good luck with the running, I do it 3 to 4 times a week and I am an addict to those endorphines... don't over do it, take it easy and start slow. xoxo

Tracey said...

I'm going to be a Daisy leader for my little girl! I done signed myself up yesterday. I think I might have lost my mind, but it's a good challenge.

And I used to work in higher ed & I cried at every graduation & every performance of my kids. And they weren't even mine-mine. I have no idea what a mess I'll be on June 14 at my own baby girl's preschool graduation. But it's going to involve a LOT of tissues.

NJ said...

I have two goals for June. Run and blog 4 times a week.

I started running and some how got side tracked too. I have fancy new shoes waiting and an ipod of rocking tunes.

I've just started a blog and find myself overwhelmed with it all. So instead of letting it get to me, I want to remember to just set aside time to write!

Ariel said...

I am going to make June my best month yet. I will be husband-less for all of it, but I am going to smile and shine for my kids, and not be a grouch-monster. I am going to plan fun activities, art projects, field trips, and eat out with them. I am going to make them feel special so they don't miss their Daddy too too much....and I am doing Jillian Michaels Ripped in 30, so I may or may not be ripped come July 1....so watch out! As always, thanks for being a beautiful inspiration! xoxo
p.s. I cried just looking at photos of L's recital...I can't wait for my little ones special moments.

Kathryn said...

Just popping on to say 'hi' - great advice and love how you sharing living the small things so well (and loving them)!

Humphrey. said...

Just saw a runner friend's FB status--Today is National Running Day! Congrats to you!!!! Me...I'm gonna dance, dance, dance!!

Susie Q said...

LOVE LOVE LOVE your water babies!!! Oh my gosh - that Nella Bean....that SMILE!! I could stare at her photos for hours!

Jen said...

Thank you Kelle! June 1, I am walking every day!!
Love the beach pictures!!

Tina said...

For June, I want to start spending less time on my laptop and more time paying attention to my kids. Seems like as soon as I pick up my laptop I'm sucked into a whole and don't come out for a good hour or so... often times while my 4 year old is asking me to come look at this, can we play that, etc. I want to try to be just a little bit more present for my kids.

Kelle I must know - where did you get Lainey's bathing suit?! SO cute!!!!

amypins said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Andrea said...

Gorgeous pics as always. I plan on coming back to read this when I don't have 3 kids dancing around me. I stole a tootsie roll type candy (it was vanilla in a brightly colored wrapper) when I was 6. I was found out when my dad saw the flared ends of the wrapper sticking out the end of my tightly clenched fist.

Kimberly said...

Sangria recipe please! Love all of your posts!

amypins said...

I have so many pictures of my 2 girls, my 3 yr old blondie and now tons of my 1month old brunette. Problem is most are on the computer and not displayed in our home. That's my goal for this month. To learn some editing for my photoshop elements and actually order some pics to put in frames and show off in my house.
and of course after 5 weeks on maternity leave i'd like to start working on the remaining 15lbs of pregnancy weight.

Our Family said...

Your ideas, your pictures, your music, your words. Everything about your blog makes me happy!! I am going to paint the master bathroom this month. I am!! I have picked out the color and the towels (which are on sale this week, by the way) and the decor. I am going to get it done!! I am also going to make it to bootcamp 4 days a week this month instead of the normal three. ANd I am doing that for my girls cause I am going to go swimming with them this summer!! After I complete this, I will be awaiting the handshake instructions!!!!

the sister pics are GORGEOUS and something the three of you will cherish forever.

April & Michael said...

My hubby and I said back in mid-May that on June 1st we were going to start eating "healthier." Not go on a diet but just make better choices. So that is what we will be doing different.

I just have to say that the little girl on the beach with Lainey looks very much like Jennifer Anniston to me. :)

Kim said...

I'm going to join you on your month of running. Thanks for the idea :-)

Stunningly Sweet said...

This month I am going to let go of my babies for a night and have a well deserved date night with my husband! This momma has a hard time leaving her babies~

Gwen said...

That picture of Nella sticking her tongue into the water kills me. Too cute! And what timing, to catch it.

Suzanne said...

First off, your dad's comment about TJMaxx and the beaches made me smile.

Secondly, you reminded me that I once stole erasers too (girls my age collected them at that time.) No! I'd totally blocked that. It was on vacation in Florida to boot! :(

Thirdly, I sent the excerpt from Amy Poehler's speech to my husband.
*sigh* Yes we do get more fearful and less flexible, don't we?

As for my big project this summer? (aside from moving to a smaller house in our attempts to downsize) To paint, decorate my youngest daughter's bedroom on very little money. I look forward to the challenge. :)

Marla Taviano said...

I'm writing an e-book for husbands about s-e-x. It's the companion to my book, Is That All He Thinks About?, that I said I'd never write.

Finishing the writing in June, then blasting it out there and praying we get enough money to fund the rest of our family's trip to Cambodia in December. Woohoo!!

Erin said...

You make me want to move to Florida right now, rather than in a year. It's gorgeous!
I plan to get to crafting this summer and complete my list of "Kick Butt Things to do my Last Summer in Tennessee." I also want to try out some new recipes and have nice dinners with my friends. Due to the wonder of having to work, we rarely see each other. I want to take my dog for a walk and lose those pesky 10 pounds. I want to make home made ice cream and invite my family, friends, and church family. I want to do volunteer work. I want to read a few new books.
I really just want to take full advantage of my Summer.

Thank you for your thought proviking post! Lovely as usual.

Terrie said...

that sky....is just stunning! i live in an amazing place as well, and i know i could appreciate it more. i will join you in that.

Tonya said...

There is so much I love about this post. Most of all though, is your childhood stealing story. I love the fact that the eraser said Jesus Love You! To me, this speaks to the fact that Jesus loves us and forgives us no matter what, even when we steal an eraser from a Christian bookstore lololol

Also am loving the ballet recital pics. My 3 oldest girls have been in ballet for the last 8 years and I have enjoyed all 8 years, it has been so good for them. Ava, my 5 year old started this year and enjoys it as much as her older sisters. I am sure Sophia will as well.

The beach is lovely. I adore the storm picture. We are headed to the beach in a couple of weeks and I can't wait to sit out on our balcony and just enjoy the beauty. There is something so soothing about the sounds and smells of the gulf. I am ignoring the fact that I still need to lose 10 lbs. and have to wear a bathing suit, think I will buy a really cute cover up! LOL

Tonya said...

...oh, and forgot to mention the picture of Lainey loving on Nella in the baby pool....one of my favorite pictures of your babies,ever!

Jannice said...

Oh gosh, my list of things to do is so long and I'm going to be away all summer - so I don't think I'll have much time to get most things done! But, I did get a fabulous new camera and am going to take up photography again. I make jewelry, so I will be practicing some new patterns! If I was home, I'd be filling and hanging all of the many frames that I keep buying, but not hanging! I also have a craft desk that I have been slowly putting together.

I have two little girls, 22 months apart. They too have such a special relationship, I just love seeing them together. It makes my heart swell. Have a beautiful day!

p.o.s.h. said...

I love this post ---

It is something to embrace where you live. I'm finally home after a year away and how things haven't changed much I'm seeing some of it like it was the first time - fields of wheat, lightning bugs, the morning mist on fields of cows grazing, puffy clouds for miles. And oh the sounds - frogs, cicadas, and birds chirping. The planet is an amazing place.

Happy June!!

Callie said...

I'm going to take Amy Poehler's advice because your idea is better than any I could come up with on my own. I recently ran my first ever 5K (first weekend in May) and I've slacked a bit on my running since. So if its okay with you, I'm going to join you in your run-everyday-in-June challenge. Even just a few blocks. I've let myself off the hook far too often by accepting my excuse that NC is too hot, but if you're doing it in FL than that excuse is no good.

p.s. you made me think of my childhood stolen loot. I went with my dad to a hardware store (not a rare occurrence--my dad is the-mr-handy-man). I saw these shiny things (some sort of bolts perhaps?) in big bins and thought they'd be beautiful silver dishes in my dollhouse. My dad found them later in my pocket and I was mortified to be made to go back and return them to the old man behind the counter. The next week though my dad let me do a few pint-sized chores around the house and then we went back and I bought some silver "dishes" for my dollhouse at the hardware store with my earned money. I must have been about 5? It's funny b/c until I read about Lainey and the happy meal toy, I don't think I'd thought about that since then. But those little lessons stay with you even when you think you've forgotten, don't they?

Thing said...

Lovely post and amazing photos.
- As always!
I have 5 kids and YES there is always new situations to handle.
And questions! And you get better at it.
We just have to love, live and learn!

Im not a runner.
But I love to exercise at the gym
and take walks =}

Happy day!

Angie said...

Loving this June challenge! Here are my goals...

1. Drop the last five pounds. I bounced back easily after babies 1 & 2 but baby three did me in. Haven't been able to shake the last five and it's been 1.5 years! No matter how many hours I spend running & weight training but now you went and lit a fire. 122 here I come!

2. Read and journal every day.

3. No negative talk. Only what is positive coming out of this mouth for the next 30 days!

Thanks for the inspiration :)

Angie from Ohio

susan said...

OK the picture of the girls kissing totally made me teary. Reminds me of my Lanie and Jana. LOVE LOVE

M&M said...

Once again I stand in Awe at your blog. You are so gifted! I will join you in running every day in June. I also am going to do landscaping on our front yard, put up some wall words on our living room wall, and maybe even see my 13 month old start walking on her own! Love my life!!

Rik said...

I plan to eat more sand and lay prone in shallow water on the beach...yes, Nella is calling me to a more sublime life! Unfortunately, no one will rush to take a picture of me doing it. I love the friendship pics of Lainey and her ballet partner princess! Seriously, I want to celebrate the simple more. We rush too much. We don't stop to listen to the leaves in the morning breeze or stop to appreciate our shadow. And I want to let go of aspirations for perfection--to refuse to correct someone's incorrect word or misspelling. To understand other's styles and choices. Yes, that will be my mid-year resolution...and maybe to not get so upset when my blogging daughter uses a word I think is too coarse and crude for the "perfect" little lady I raised. Yes, that too.


Kate said...

I amm lacing up my running shoes and doing the couch to 5k program ( the app for my phone is great) I never excerise but I need to so I am ready to get started.

loveyour blog, thanks for letting us peer in.

TRB Holt said...

Bug & Ruby's Gram

Abby said...

I've never commented before, but just had to say how wonderful Lainey must be at ballet! In your pictures, she is definitely the girl doing it right :)

I'm having a baby girl any day now, so my month of June will be about becoming a mother!

The Harvin Family said...

I bet you guys always have that wonderful sunscreen smell - I love that. When me and my girls play outside all day and have that sunscreen smell even after our baths. It reminds me of all the fun we had that day!
In the month of June I will get my girl into gymnastics! I think she is going to love it. She has a language disorder and some people think that we shouldn't put her in things. That we should just focus on "therapy" for now. I say "Why would I not give her every single opportunity that all the others get?"!!! Just conquered swim lessons. Now on to the next challenge!

Drvance19 said...

Bought a treadmill back in November and I'm pretty sure it has only been used a handful of times. I keep saying "okay, this is the day and I mean it". I declare TODAY IS THE DAY! Yes, I want to lose weight and have a goal, not so much a weight but a jean size. In all honesty though I really I just want to feel better, be healthier and be a good model of being active for my kids.

Val said...

I had so many "that's just like me!" moments reading this post. It's so nice to relate to another mama like that. : )

Your blog is fabulous and your girls are beautiful...it's so refreshing to see the love you guys have for one another, especially in light of our culture's view of special needs children. So many people wrongly feel that a child with special needs will be nothing but a burden, but when I read your entries and look at the pictures, all I see is love and joy. Burden? Not so much. I wish that every pregnant woman facing the possibility that her baby will have special needs could see your blog, could see that it doesn't have to be the end of the world, that life can still be rich and full and beautiful. Keep up the good work!

Lisa Hewlett said...

You seriously make me want to pack up the family and head to the Gulf for a weekend! SO beautiful! And in June? I'd love to finally go camping with my husband. Our 6th anniversary is the 11th, maybe we'll drop the baby off at my parents and finally tent camp at the nearby lake.

mrc-w said...

Hahahahaha, oh Sandi Patty!! So funny! I think your mom and my mom have the same taste in "Contemporary Christian Music" hahaha :)

Lainey has such good ballet form!! And that last picture of Nella is sublime!

Hmmm June resolutions...I'll have to think about that one...maybe:
1. Finish at least ONE of the umpteen little unfinished house projects we have underway
2. Take more pictures
3. Go camping with Jon

Brylee's mama said...

Unfortunately, this month looks like it is going to be spent getting my hand healed from when I was holding my 1 yr old daughter Brylee 3 weeks ago and stumbled over a toy and fell left hand (my dominant hand of course!) first into the glass door of our entertainment center, cutting a nerve in my hand. Thank God my daughter was not hurt, which is by far the most important! WHEN it heals tho, I have a youth rocking chair that I am going to attempt to paint all pretty for her. Aside from that, just enjoy this wonderful GR, Michigan summer having fun with her and her 2.5 year old brother Caden!!

Kirby Johansen said...

love, Love, LOVE!!! I am loving this post and all the pics. This month I plan to get back on Weight Watches and finish what I started, not only to loose those lbs but to finish to get to my goal to learn how to eat to feel better. This June 2011 I plan to STICK with it!!!

Brenna said...

This June marks our 11th wedding anniversary, and my goal is to FINALLY scrapbook our wedding. Oh, and maybe our honeymoon too. Aim high, right?!

colleen renee said...

Love your photos in this post!

Running is my FREE therapy session :)


Kelly B said...

The Bachman's have been making exercise a priority for a few months now - and the kids get into it as much as we do. I must say - that one picture of Nella licking up the sand? Girlfriend has the makings of a great chaturanga push-up, which even I'm still working on. Enjoy the running - I know I do.

colette said...

I will lose the extra 5 pounds I'm still carrying from my pregnancies. This has been a goal of mine for a long time, but putting it in words here makes me commit to it stronger. Thanks for the extra push I needed! Once again, you've inspired me!! :)

wendy.patterson said...

My morning ritual is to frantically scramble my (girls 9 and 4) into the car and I race to beat the traffic and get to work. It is a race to get into the car and get the garage door down in minut - 2 seconds. I vow to start walking to the car and when I get in, to pause and look in the review mirror at my (2) hearts and reflect on all the day will bring them, and then say in a Confident, Mommy voice.. "girls, today is going to be a GREAT DAY!!!!" I say this, because one day instead of looking at them in the back seat they will be sitting next to me in the front and well I won't get that straight on view of their childlike faces... I vow to do this for June... Mommy of "2 Princess"...

melissa said...

Your picture of Nella belly down licking the sand/water is AMAZING!! This month I am going to spend as much time as possible outdoors with my girls --living in Minnesota, nice weather is something we have to drink in while we can!

Angie said...

Ok, just finished my pilates dvd (ran 5 & completed back workout before hubby went to work) and set aside chicken for lunch. Later we will go for a walk and after the kids are in bed I'm gonna read & journal! Just lettin' ya know so you know I'm not slacking on day 1!!

Angie from Ohio

P.S. How did your run go??

Jaclyn Hicks said...

Ooooohhh, and the secret handshake?!?

This month, I plan on:

1. Taking the leap of faith it takes to send out my next two children's books; sending them out into the great unknown, to be harshly criticized or readily accepted.

2. Continuing to pick vegetables out of the garden, eating whole foods from home.

3. Paint canvases for bedroom wall art.

4. Be a better help-meet to my husband, supporting and loving him in the way he deserves.

June should be fun! Enjoy those running shoes, endorphins rock!

anita said...

coming out of lurkdom over here - Kelle, I have no idea where I found the link to your blog a few months back, but I'm pleased as punch that I did. Your writing and ability to nail the composition of "small things" in a way that relates to all of us is simply incredible. I am the mother of three almost grown children (Maggs, 24; Johnny, 22; and Courtney, 21). In regards to Sunday's post, I too have had more than a few of those "oh yeah, my kids are human and I'm not a perfect mother either" moments myself. What flashed to my mind was when my then way ahead of herself 9-year old Maggs decided she needed to know about sex. Talk about a sucker punch. My not so well thought out explanation.....of which I'll spare the details since I'm assuming the vast majority of your readers are well versed on that subject.....ended with, "and if you have sex before you're married, you're gonna die!"
As it turns out, that was the only part of the conversation that stuck with her until she was oh....maybe 14, and then she asked again, and I was much better prepared. My philosophy is similar to yours I think. I couldn't give a flip about the dust bunnies and dirty clothes - there's so little time to enjoy when they're small, and it's so important that our kids "feel" the priority that they are in our lives. I wanted my kids to know that they were way more important than how much money we earned, or the size of our house, or if our car had video screens in the head rests.....and today I have three healthy, happy, prepared, young adult children who are learning how to fight their own way through this thing called life.

And by the way, I don't think there's a post that goes by without drawing tears. Thank you for sharing your precious girls.

Denise said...

Love, love, love the way your girls love eachother. Priceless!!

I am going to decorate my upstairs hallway, I love my photographs and don't have any up......I need to get on that.

Hattie said...

I freaking love this blog.

Running: way to go, Kelle!! I committed to being a runner in 2006. Two marathons later, I can say it was the best decision i ever made. stress relief, guaranteed me time, health benefits--I love it all.

My resolution for June? I'm gogin wtih the last 5 pounds. I'm starting to get the itch for baby #2 but I want to go into it in great shape. Losing the weight after #1 wasn't easy for me and I'm still carrying the last 5 (okay, okay..more like the last 7). If I can knock off these 5 pounds in june, maybe I'll finally feel "ready" for #2.

Amanda Wells said...

Please tell me where Lainey's adorable swimsuit is from! SO CUTE!

anita said...

Oh! AND I have been in the process of de-cluttering my life since October. So I plan to continue de-cluttering my body (down 55 so far), my mind - I've realized after 26 years of marriage that I too am allowed to have a "life," and my house - 22 years of military moves have really piled the junk up, so I plan to have at least 2 rooms of random "stuff" cleared out and organized by the end of June!

wendy said...

The last photo of Nella is my favorite. I have already been cherishing the moment, drinking in the sunny mornings, and holding those dear to me a little closer since reading this blog. You remind me to stop, breathe, and look around. Life is good. Thanks, Kelle.

Crystal said...

My project for June is to complete something thats been in the making for about 15 years. I spent my college years going to concert after concert- all the while collecting t-shirts of the bands I saw. Many of those shirts have sat in a bin for years- being moved into our new house, moved to our garage attic to make room for our baby...Instead of continuing to move them and not being able to part with my memories I have begun making my family a tshirt quilt. My project for June is to finish the quilt so my husband, son and myself can enjoy playtime, parks and many picnics. My old memories will turn into such grand new ones to be celebrated on our new quilt!

Aimee aka "Mommy" who writes our family blog said...

It's funny you mention doing something new in June. Our family must coincide with your quest. We are making a life-changing move to Georgia in the month of June. So, I'll focus on that-and it's definitely leaping out of our boundaries. Something we've wanted to do for many, many years. We don't have anyone there that we know-we're from Kansas (over 16 hours away), and it is an adventure we've worked really hard for. I'll definitely be keeping up with photos of our progress. But yes, June is a very exciting prospective month, and I cheers you (Sangria to Sangria) for the wonderful journey ahead!
PS- I love your beach pictures, makes me glad that we're moving closer to beaches and not man-made lakes ;-)

Betsy Black said...

Lainey looks just like her mama in the ballet photo where she's smiling at the camera. You must be so proud! I love the pictures of the girls loving on each other... I have quite a few of my boys like that. They're almost the same ages as your girls.
Good luck with the running challenge! I am going to take you up on this & vow to catch up on my blogging this month. I have all the pictures ready, just need to gather my thoughts!
Happy June 1st!

Carolyn said...

I just can't get over your perfect little family... you are so blessed. :) So glad I found your blog!

Mary-Cate said...

Those sunsets are to die for! My dad is visiting in two weeks and we're heading to the Gulf... baby Zayn's first time!

As for this challenge... I need to workout everyday (my husband bought Kinnect for the Xbox) and say goodbye to baby weight (8 months ago, oops!) I also need to sand and paint this dresser I found at a thrift store because I've been meaning to do that for months. I like this challenge!

I'm so happy Lainey had fun at her recital. Also the "green nerd" in me lets you know that Badger and California Baby sunscreen are the safest on the market! :0 xx

April Vernon said...

The pics of them together in the swimming pool melt my heart! Adam has been doing the same with Levi lately. We always say, "Are you loving on Levi?" Yesterday he was hugging & kissing him & said, "I wuving Wevi, Mommy!" Sooo sweet!

I got the Mamarazzi book and LOVE it! My photos are already better. My next trick will be figuring out how to change the f-stop on my Nikon D40. Thanks for looking at Levi's Bday pics on the blog. Made my day!

mommyliu said...

Love love love the pictures of the girls in the kiddie pool especially the second one. I laughed out loud:) They are so sweet. I have a few goals I have been meaning to accomplish. I have recently started running, which is not my thing but am proud to say I've kept it up and plan on sticking with it. I also plan on opening my etsy shop back up this month. I was doing so much sewing that I got burned out, but I have been in the mood to sew lately and plan to start again!

StephGould said...

I love reading your blog.
Your photos inspire me to pick up my camera more.
Your children are SO beautiful and so are you.
Your words stir something in me that I can't quite explain.
How do you do it?

Lissa said...

The city needs to hire you to lead up their tourism dept! Every post makes me dream of moving off to Florida even more!

It's funny I read this post this morning because after discussing with coworkers, I just told myself in my head that starting tomorrow, I am getting up early to jog outside. I LOVE Michigan summer mornings and dangit, I need to take advantage of it while it's here (and dangit, I NEED to start a workout routine since I failed at P90X last month)! Good luck to you!

Kelly said...

What a timely post :) I've had it on my mind to make some positive changes. Not only with nutrition and health, but to get back to the roots of what inspires me and makes me tick. June's the month to do it! Thanks for the encouragement! You rock!

Kate Giovinco Photography said...

My family has a beach house and the walls need some family on them. So I am taking your ikea idea and giving it my own spin. I will be hanging 20 x 24 frameless prints of all the grand children and then doing a wall of 16 x 20 of snapshots of the entire family.

I also plan to add a photo wall in my bedroom. It needs it. I have been meaning to do it for a year and with the move this weekend it is getting done immediately in my new place.

The gulf is amazing and I love your perspective on life. Life really is beautiful in the everyday.

The Hartsfield Family said...


You had me at -- that's my kid with the bright knee high socks. I laughed out loud! :)

I'm LOVING your new header and the pictures of Lainey playing with her friend. They are too cute together! Such beautiful girls. And the pictures of Lainey & Nella snuggling and kissing? Even more precious!

My June Resolution? To go easier on myself. To savor the day and be in the moment.

I think I've tricked myself into thinking that being a *super mom and wife* means always having it all together. I'm now realizing it's got nothing to do with that. The laundry and dirty dishes can wait, the naughty behaviors that my daughter brought home from school will come and go (and I'll probably miss them later when I've found she's grown up too fast), the car will eventually get washed (uhh...maybe, lol).

But the moments where we all giggle and run wildly through the grass, to get to the tree we'll have our "picnic in the park" under? The early morning beach walks? The "date nights" where we somehow find ourselves at an arcade playing games like a couple of kids? I may never have again.

Thank you for my little reminder to revel in, to celebrate, and to savor it all. :)

~ Katie

Stef said...

I want to sew. Not anything great, but SOMETHING. I need to use my fingers in a crafty, homemade way. My Mom is giving me a sewing machine, so that grand excuse is about to float out the window... its time. I need to learn to sew something.

Loved this post. I feel like I need to stop saying that to you, but I do love all your posts.

tjennings said...

As soon as the challenge was presented, my head swam with the many things I want to do: learn to play the harmonica, learn another language, learn to knit, finish the stuffed animal for my niece, finish the scrapbook for my husband... etc. Lol. Therefore, I have decided two things. First, I will finish my application for school (due July 1st) as my June challenge and second, I will make a list of all those other things I want to do, and give them a time frame so they aren't always just out of my reach (i.e.: Doll will be July's challenge). Some will take longer, but maybe if I always feel like I'm moving towards a goal, it will be easier to keep moving forward. Thank you for your inspiration, good luck with the running (that is my one constant challenge) and I cannot wait to see how long my list ends up being!

My Thoughts said...

Interesting thoughts Kelle. I think this summer will bring lots of new opportunities, as we are adopting our first baby and the little one will be born soon. A lot of our new experiences will come via this precious little one. As we learn more about and meet her unique needs, snap billions of pictures, delight in her presence and offer her the love, permanency, security and dedication of a family, all in our family will surely be blessed.

erin said...

My husband and I just moved in to our new house on Memorial Day and I'm going to get it organized this June. I signed up for prenatal yoga and started my garden this week too. What a fabulous June it will be!

Rosa said...

Wouldn't even know where to start. So many projects i'd love to embark on, although...must also save to purchase items needed to embark on such projects! LOL. For now, getting some awesome pics developed and hung up around the house. :)

Michelle said...

Your outlook on life is a reminder of what I have to be grateful for. Three years ago, at 31, I was diagnosed with cancer. It jolted me out of my day-to-day humdrum and made me stop to appreciate what I have right in front of me. It made me realize that the grass isn't always greener, and that I don't need the material things everyone says you HAVE to have to make you happy - I have two beautiful children and a wonderful family. What else do I need?
My challenges? Work out three times each week (instead of only going for my weekly training session :)), post on my blog at least once a week, and take an hour a week where I don't *think* about anything. :)
Thanks again for your amazing posts and pictures.

We are the Shepards. said...

Ok, first of all...you are beautiful. Your children are beautiful. And your dad is freaking hilarious. Oh, and from the looks of those pictures, Lainey has some real instinctual poise... stands out from the rest of the class. What a cutie pie.

Shilo and Jason said...

My challenge is definitely exercising. I just can't seem to get myself motivated. By the time I get home from work, take care of the munchkin, fix dinner, put him to bed, I'm just exhausted! But I know I need to do it and mix it up. My goal is to start getting out to the hiking trails again - hopefully that will bring back some inspiration!

Mia Willson said...

Hi Kelle,
Somehow when I stumbled across your blog a few months ago, my love for photography was re-awakened. Since then, I've been taking more pictures, BETTER pictures, finding inspiration and started a blog. Thank you!
My goal this month is learn more about using my hand-me-down Nikon D70 and enjoying every single small thing that comes my way. My little Mylie has DS, too and is the light of my life along with her amazing brother, Ty.

love to you and yours,
mia willson

Jessica said...

I love your blog everything about it!!

It's June and I have been a stay at home mommy to my awesome sweet baby girl who is my miracle and in 2 weeks I am going to have to let go and let a teacher guide my baby girl. It's killing me inside to watch her grow and it scares the crap out of me because I can't be there to protect her every second. But this is a challenge for me and something I know I can do no matter how many tears I cry that first day.

Being a mother and a wife are the two most amazing jobs in the world and I wouldn't trade them for a second. Thank you Kelle for making your blog so sweet, so real and so open! I'm glad I am not alone

Caroline said...

ok - you have provided the canvas so here goes...I am finally going to get started on my kids photo books. I vow to work on them a little bit each week. (Say 4 days out of the week?)

OK, here goes!

christy said...

You rock my socks Kelle Hampton! I am never one for New Year's resolutions, so I am all for tackling something new right now.. in the smack middle of the year. With so many ideas, what shall I do first?

I think I will start by cooking something new once a week and letting my oh-so-grown 7 year old help me. I will start the tradition of "family meetings" in my household and encourage my children to tell me something about themselves that I don't already know.

Olaina.PhotosAndArt said...

Hi Kelli,

My goal is to overcome the clinical depression I have fallen into. I feel like I missed most of May (Mother's Day! My daughter's first birthday!) and I want to LIVE June. So I'm working on it. I'm also hoping my blog about mom'ing with depression will help somebody out--olainaafterschool.blogspot.com, so I will keep writing my way through life. Your blog is an inspiration--thanks!

Lola said...

Completing my Picture Color class that I just signed for.

Beautiful pics as always....
LOVE the new header.
Makes me want to be in that beach right now :)

our clan said...

I love the first of June!! I love that it makes me feel like a kid again with butterflies in my stomach anticipating what summer has in store for us. My goal this month is just to try harder. Dumb I know!! But try harder to be a better sister or friend. Try harder to be in the moment with my son and husband. And to try harder to just enjoy things that come our way. Summer here we come!!

Bethany said...

I could just squeeze your girls so tight!! The picture of them giving kisses in the pool brought tears! I love when sisters and brothers love on each other! Makes us feel as parents - we are for sure doing something right!

M & G said...

The kitchen wall that I have been planning for over a year...I am tackling it this month. No excuses! Love your posts and your girls, thanks for the inspiration!

Laura said...

The SKY! WOAH. Love that photo. So much. I love it all. Baby tasting salt water. Sparklers on the beach. Creed and Hand Clap. I'm totally in. Let's make June fabulous too. =) I'm planning to start an Etsy shop this month!

{andthisiswhatshesaid} said...

You always inspire me so much. I love it. You're amazing.

Love the pictures of your girls giving love and the last sunset picture. so perfect.

I haven't decided what I will do, but I will do something :)

pakosta said...

YOu make me want to live a better life! I love this post as I love all your posts!!!
I am going to join you in running every day of june, even if it's 1/2 mile a day!! yay! I love to jog/walk and have been really good about it lately, but not every day! I am IN!


Kate said...

Lovely photos, as always. I just love that last one of Nella laughing. And the one of Lainey loving on Nella - GAH! Too precious!

My goal this month is to be able to do the spits all three ways. I've attempted this many times in the past, vowing I would stretch faithfully every day, but I always seems to give up when I don't see progress fast enough for my liking.

I'll do it this time. Slow and steady and all that. :)

Kol said...

You inspire me to be a better person and to be a better mother. I am completely in awe at how you view the world and it is wonderful. The way you look at life is with pure joy and innocence - I wish I could do so.

Emma Krueger said...

I feel like I say the same things every time...beautiful post! But it was a great post! I teared up at the pictures of your little girls playing the pool. I love when kids love each other. And your makeup (and you of course) look beautiful in that picture of you and Nella on the beach! Thanks for sharing.

Tracy said...

I am one of those Floridians that has taken our location for granted. This summer we are making it our goal to go to the beach more often. That is pretty easy, so my big/difficult goal for the summer is to write down a schedule, set aside some time, and work diligently with Rachel on her speech, writing, counting, and reading. I had big plans last year and never carried through. I hope that I can do it and that when Rachel goes back to school in the fall everyone will be surprised what we accomplished over the summer. Wish me luck!!

Jill said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Jill said...

I looove a new month and a new season. It's so refreshing. I wiped down our marker board calendar last night and was excited to think about my new month of June. I work at a school and that means no work for 12 weeks! :D I love your challenge- I vow to make my bedroom a beautiful, relaxing, special place for my husband and I. No more piles of laundry, sticky sippy cups, toys that I step on and curse my non-sanctuary like room. It's on!

puckedbylove said...

Reading your blog, while giving me uplifting moments to look forward to when my own daughter starts to grow and meet milestones and show me her very own almond eyes and sweet smile, also makes me homesick for Florida. We just bought a condo in St.Petes and I'm so excited to get down there and spend some time in the sun!
As for my June resolution, I joined a gym yesterday and have a friend going with me. I want to get healthy. For me, but mostly for my daughter. I need to be here to watch her grow and learn.

Talia said...

I LOVE your posts. The stunning photos and the words are absolute perfection. I look forward to visiting your blog like I look forward to vacation.

So many things to accomplish...

1. Like you -- keep running.
2. Paint the hallway. Really.
3. Eat from my garden.
4. Care for my gradens. (I am great at the beginning and then my attention wains...)
5. Play mini golf, pick strawberries, have patio parties, in essence - live summer!

Catie said...

My baby has done ballet, tap & so on for 4.5 years...it amazes me everyday how much confidence she has up on the "big" stage but shy as ever any other time (until she warms up :)) Love your pics & her red socks. I am interested in hearing what sunscreen you use on your babies & you - We live in Kentucky & played in the pool for 2 days & we are burnt to a crisp.

Katie said...

Thanks for the words of inspiration today!

Tara said...

Your life is so happy. I always smile when I read your posts. And wow, that picture of the sunset is incredible. I'd have it as a mural on my wall if I could!

I also want to thank you for always having the best music playing! I've found so many great songs while visiting your site. ♥

Sally said...

I vowed on Monday to also lace up my running shoes every day. I'm going to run my first 10k next month--that's my plan. And my new favorite thing is the "iMapMyRun" app on my iphone--it shows me exactly how far I've ran, pace, etc....fun little gadget:) You're so inspiring Kelle--always look forward to your blogs--amazing:)

Emily said...

Interesting month to commit to conquering...the last day of this fine month marks the exact half-way point in the year (and it also happens to be my birthday!)...so - come June 30, we will have some celebrating to do here on this blog for our accomplishments. We will be able to celebrate that we have "done it" AND still have a whole other HALF A YEAR to revel in our successes!
I will do more fun things with my kids and be less concerned about routines. I will spend more quality time with the people who inspire me to be better. I will embrace the unexpected. I will work on those six-pack abs (perhaps the threat of having to post a picture of *this one* in a few weeks would be good motivation!!)
As for Amy's words - I couldn't agree more. I was just having this conversation with myself the other day: I am at a point in my life where I get to choose who I want to spend my precious time with and I want to make an effort to spend it with people who challenge me to be better, be more, be the best version of me.
The girls are beautiful. I love sharing in your rituals. We are enjoying our shift from wet, cool Spring to hot, humid Summer here in Northern KY. The backyard pool is getting lots of fill-ups. Our noses are enjoying the wafts of sunscreen. The freezer stash of popsicles is quickly dwindling. It is all good, indeed!
Happy running. Those bright shoes look hard to misplace - hopefully no "bowling shoe" stand-ins will have to be employed this June! ;)

Esther Heavnzbrat said...

how DO you find the time to write such beautiful entries AND upload the photos to coordinate. you amaze me. And your girls are radiant!

Stephanie said...

The picture of the girls in the pool, where Lainey has lips puckered to Nella, seriously brought tears to my eyes! Nothing more special than sibling love!

Jennifer S said...

We have been saying we will take the our son to the zoo for the last 3 yrs. He is turning 4 this weekend and now has 2 younger siblings and we are finally taking him (for his birthday)! My husband has never been to a zoo. I don't know how that happened but it's true! So this weekend we will be going to the zoo as a family and I will be the only one who has ever been to one before in the group. I plan to take lots of pictures :D I am also determined to learn to sew this month! I knit( pretty well) and crochet (can get by) but I can't sew and I want to. So this month I MUST learn to sew!

CoyGirl said...

I'm 27 and recovering from my second hip surgery... so just please promise me that if your joints start to hurt... you will walk instead of jog on some days??? And wear the right shoes? Remember that one time when you wore those tan non-Nikes? he he

Thanks for the white fluffy clouds photos, the beautiful words, and just sharing your life! You're a light!

I am going to play my guitar every single day this month! wahoo!

Terri said...

Dear Kelle, I recently vacationed in beautiful Naples and enjoyed a scorcher of a day at Lowdermilk Beach. I now know why you love it so much. Enjoyed the ballet photos...I remember those days well! Your babies are delightful!

Lisa said...

Beautiful post...Lainey kissing Nella in baby pool, Lainey at her recital, that kick-ass sunset/storm, Lainey's beautiful little friend. But I will say, no picture you've ever posted beats the one of Nella licking the sand! Oh my gosh! Great picture! So funny!!! So much to do in June and I cannot pick one thing in particular to accomplish because there are just too many, but I will aspire to do one thing (at least) every night before I sit down to read. Every night after putting my son to bed I sit down on the the chaise end of my couch, cover up with my favorite blanket and with my husband very near to my side, I snuggle in with my Kindle (on my 13th book since beginning of year). And every day I say to myself, "after I put Evan to bed I am going to do (fill in the blank: fold laundry, pay bills, clean off dining room table, etc..) and I NEVER do! So. This month. Every night (I'll try) I'm going to do at least one thing (chore) before I sit down for the night. Thanks for the awsome inspiration Kelle!

ps. sooo waiting for your Photography Tutorial (no pressure:). I aspire to take amazing pictures like you!

Diana Doyle said...

Your gorgeous happy spirit shines through Kelle in the photo of you and Nella...simply stunning!

Thank you for putting sunshine in my blue cup today!

Love your blog!
Diana x

Annie Singler said...

My babies are napping... all three of them (5,4,and 3m). I'm sipping instant coffee from a mug as big as my face. Thank you for taking me to the beach with you.

This month, my BIRTHDAY month... my 30th birthday month... I'm going to burn all of my crappy mom clothes and buy something pretty and expensive. :)

Jonita said...

Nella is one happy little girl. Just precious...as is the unspoken bond between her and Lainey. And I love the way Nella stares down a popsicle. No doubt she will put a hurtin' on many of those this summer!

Amy said...

This month I will exercise more to lose the last five pounds of "baby weight" from my second baby (now 9 months old!). I used to be so good at trying to do at least some sort of exercise (lugging around two little ones, laundry baskets, chasing a 2-year-old, etc aside) every day, but have not kept myself going in the past few months. And I feel sluggish when I don't exercise! So, thanks for the kick in the pants. In June, and beyond, I will exercise again!

And, I will finish the yarn wreath I've been "working on" for the past 3 months!! - Amy

Thomas-Louis said...

In June, I'd like to lose five pounds, those five pounds I didn't lose yet after my last delivery, nine months ago. I'm very close to what I weighed before I had kids!
Thank you for this little motivation!
And I really like the picture of Lainey and her friends hand in hand looking at the sunset.

Danielle said...

I love how I always finish reading one of your posts and want to go scoop up my sleeping baby, layer on a raincoat, and splash around outside. June will center around slower, better food for us as well. With the farmer's markets opening up and a babe that is more independent every day, I vow to cook dinner for our family more. I'm not going to say I'll do it every day, but there will be many more hours spent in that kitchen. And, ugh, cleaning it too. Thank you, Kelle, for getting me off my butt!

Bikini By 30 said...

I got a sewing machine for Christmas. I still have not taken it out of the box. It haunts me. I have fabric to play with and new sharp scissors to use. I have made learning to sew a huge overwhelming task instead of something fun and exciting to learn. I just need to pull that sucker out and play!

aslavik said...

You always deliver girl. You do not lack inspiration in the least! So, in honor of your inspiration, I will do my best to get caught up on my girl's scrapbook and start one for my new babe too! Can't wait to learn the cheer...and hand clap! And please do tell, where is Lainey's adorable suit from?! Hugs!

Marianne said...

I LOVE the last picture of Nella! It's just jumps right off the screen - she's amazing!

Cherylmommyof2 said...

Great Post it really inspired me to do something. The whole stealing story got me thinking - I tried to steal something from 7-11 but my dad caught me - I felt so bad. I did steal a toy from my friend - not a cool McDonalds toy but some little stamp set - I did give back later after I played with it - that is horrible! I also had a student who was stealing toys from my classroom - I had no idea but his mom made him bring it back.
I would to start running but I think I will have to slowly get there. I want to get back into working out again since I never seem to do that much when I am pregnant.
I also want to try a new recipe every day - I have been backing with my daughter a lot more since I have finished my masters and have time to do the things I have wanted to. My main goal in the next few months is to figure out a way to raise money for the Ben Towne Foundation -something that I can include my daughter in - I feel like my mind has been going a million miles an hour with ideas - I think we might do a bake sale - but I have to figure it out - I really want to teach my kids to help others and that they can change the world by doing good. This is only the beginning I hope - so many great orgainizations and people we can help.

janekathryn said...

A new season always leaves me wanting to accomplish more goals and try new things! I want to get in the habit of couponing! Save a little money to spend on the ones I love and to treat myself as well!

Ah, Nella's little smile and watermelon swimsuit just leaves me grinning. Precious!

Siri said...

Love that you are taking up running! I did a couple of years ago and now it is something that my husband and I do together which is amazing. We have completed 3 half marathons and it is so much fun to do together! Have fun:)

tracyallegre said...

I adore the picture of Nella laying on her belly and licking the sand! And the sillhouette of Lainey and her friend is so awesome. What are your settings for that shot? What's the trick to capturing that? I'd love my pictures to look half as good as yours!

LibraryGirl62 said...

I have been parking my chair at Lowdermilk Park every Sat am-just because. To do just what you said-never take for granted our fabulous home. To connect my Pisces soul back to its home-to breathe...

Nichole said...

My Husband has just taken up running with a friend.
This new month, this new season makes me want to jump into it feet first, no looking back, and to do it because I know I can. For me, for I will be celebrating my thirtieth year at the end of the month, and I want to go into this new chapter of my life with all sorts of wide open possibilities. So, I am leaving it wide open, my life, my heart, to accept all the things that are coming my way!

Trynsimple said...

Last November, when I was pregnant with our second daughter, I started to make a homemade doll for our firstborn daughter. Now that our second little girl is two months old (!), I am going to vow to finish that doll for my first baby this month. Thank you for the inspiration!

Farnsworth Fam said...

I LOVE that last picture of Nella. That gives me the desire to really commit to this and do something. The hard choice is now what?? Put those pictures on the wall FINALLY, or get out and move outside, and forget about the bugs I use as such an excuse... You blog is very motivating. Thank you.

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