I think it’s pretty clear I spend a lot of my time at home thinking about my set-up here, and all I’d like to do with my house. I’m especially bothered by this wall:

I bought this peacock removable wallpaper from Target on a whim back in June or July. It took me this long to decide if I liked it and where to put it. After doing the first strip, I thought I might paper just that wall as an accent wall, possibly the rest of the room if I really loved it. Something I really love is that the specks of gold in the design are reflective and pick up the light in the evening around 4 or 5 pm. It’s really pretty. I’m not sure the design is total love, but I’m committed because I paid for it, and it is so much trouble to get that paper lined up just right. I’d say I worked on it a couple hours just for two panels. (My Anthropologie wallpaper I did upstairs, however, is true love and I’d use it again and again!) Anyway, here’s the kicker. I need at least 2 more rolls to finish the wall– so I went to Target for more, and it’s out of stock!!! And I checked online and it is totally sold out all over and unavailable! I was able to find one more roll on a random resale website, and it just arrived yesterday. So I have some thinking to do as to how to make this work! I think it would look nice to do a strip of dark teal paint down the middle, and to center the gold mirror in the middle of it, with the wallpaper panels on each side. However I’m not sure if I’ll really be happy with it. The more I think about it, I think that room would look really nice painted very very dark teal or navy. There isn’t much variation in our house– all the walls in our living space are connected and go up to the high ceiling, so everything is the same paint color. But I think that might be a nice accent, with the two gold mirrors against it. I’ve been shopping Target to see what might go with this idea/ how I could tie the wallpaper in.

First, I’m in love with this rug! It also ties in with the barstools in the kitchen, and would even look good under a table in the kitchen! It would also be nice under our couch–our current rug is white and gets so much traffic and dirt from our backyard, so something darker would work well. Plus it’s wool so it’d be easy to vacuum and hopefully it’d hold up well. (Our shag rug gets food and junk stuck in it all the tiiiime!) A real Persian rug will never happen, but these look-alikes are pretty darn nice.

These prints are pretty large and would look nice flanking either side of my kitchen hutch. We’d be going strong with the teal and mint combo, but it’d look nice with the rug and tie things in. It also would be nice over the couch. I’ve been looking for some large- scale art because that living room wall is sooo tall and wide. It’d be nice to have a big statement there.

We’ve never had a coffee table. I’ve been so indecisive about it since we moved here and bought the sectional. A round shape makes sense to break up all the rectangles going on with our angular couch (it has 2 chaises). And this one kind of matches my lamp, is pretty and not too heavy-feeling, and isn’t too precious for match cars and toddler feet.

A few pillows I loved. The top one would be perfect on each end of the couch because they’re quite big- 24 inches. And they would tie in a bunch of different colors. Sadly it’s out of stock!!!

This also went into my cart because it’s pink and can sort of pull from the pink in the wallpaper–? Could be put slightly under the coffee table, or as a footrest with a navy or light pink chair.

I also came across this rug

I am never ever drawn to red. It is just not a calming or happy color to me and don’t really use it in my house, but a red Persian style rug has something warm and classic about it and I think it’s look good in our master bedroom. I once saw one layered on top of a striped rug like this, with about 6 or 8 inches of the bottom rug showing all around the red one.

Genevieve Gorder did this layering thing on a show years ago, and Ill never forgot how chic and cozy it looked. The rest of the room had a lot of white in it, and so does our bedroom. It’d bring some interest to the room. Speaking of which, I don’t mind the paint color of our room (it’s a grey-white, just a few shades away from the white trim and ceiling) but it just looks like it needs a fresh coat. And I would also love to do something cool with trim on the walls. And we could also use some fresh blinds (or Roman shades!) and 3 long curtain panels for each window.

I loved this cute pillow. I think 2 of these on our bed would be so pretty, and there’s a pop of blue in the rug… not sure if it would match though 😦

I also came across this picture on Pinterest, and saved it for the leather ottoman. I have no idea where I’d find something like that, but our couch is just this style and the ottoman just goes with that cozy, casual feel. It’d be good for kids to climb all over and for propping up feet in the middle. Here are a few other rugs I’m liking. They have a different color -way and vibe. I’m really hoping for something in the blue family for our family room rug, if you can’t tell. I just think it’ll match so many things.

This World Market chandelier is kind of a knock off of the expensive Pottery Barn wood bead chandelier.

It would look pretty hung all the way from the high ceiling down over our family room, maybe with two of these on either side of some artwork on the big wall.

Also, I fell in love with this wallpaper.

Like, more true love. There’s a little section of ceiling in our kitchen that goes up to the arched window… I think it’d be cute on the ceiling. Also, keeping with all the blue and mint. There’s also a version with yellow birds that I love too. I would definitely need to paint over the chalk wall… I have kind of been wanting to because it always looks so messy, plus black doesn’t make me happy. I think white shiplap all around it would look nice and draw the eye up to the paper on the ceiling.

More finds

These gorgeous Anthropologie mirrors for over Giselle’s crib!

I also love this butterfly print. I think it’d be cute over the fireplace, or in the girls room, or part of a gallery wall. I just discovered Sugarboo, and I’m into it! Lots of great artwork and quotes for the wall.

I love a colorful gallery wall! (And a bone inlaid dresser underneath wouldn’t hurt).

Obviously I love color. I think I’m still figuring out my decor style, but it’s becoming clear that mixing color really makes me happy. I like eclectic, global, glamorous, with a little bit of traditional mixed in. Kind of like this chair!

Still, every time I see a house that’s full-on coastal, I sigh a dreamy sigh because I love it. Love all the cool blues, greens and whites. But I can’t commit to it for my whole house. Plus I absolutely cannot have so much white in my house with kids! But maybe in my dreams. I love every room, every detail, in this woman’s house. Whenever it comes up in my Instagram, it makes me envious!

Coastal with mint, blue, and pops of pink, palest blue walls and lots of girly touches! Haha!

I would paint our main living space all white instead of the “greige” that it currently is, but I’d need scaffolding 😦

I also love this woman’s house- all her designs are so creative, colorful, and full of whimsy

It inspires me to mix and match

So that’s where I’m at today. Also with two babies in arms


More about the kids… what else matters?!

Let it be known that at one month old, Giselle woke up. (Insert sad face). On Tuesday (August 21st) we hit the one month mark.

She has seemed to be a much sleepier baby than I remember my other newborns being. Maybe it’s because she was the earliest at 2.5 weeks early. Maybe it’s just part of who she is, and if so I’m jumping for joy because I have needed a nice sleepy baby!

First day going to church was at 4 weeks. Didn’t she look so sweet?!

And today she is 5 weeks old. This is always so sad for me, having my brand new baby become not so brand new. But of course I am still enjoying her so much, and she is still oh so very tiny! She still sleeps a lot, don’t get me wrong. But I’m finally getting to a stage where she’ll need a little help falling asleep, and she will stay awake for slightly longer periods of time. I have tried to be more intentional about having her sleep in her bassinet over the last few weeks because I formed such bad habits with Berrett sleeping in our bed. While I loved and savored his snuggles, I suffered the consequences in sleep loss. She has been waking up no more than two times a night. Sometimes she’ll sleep till 3 and wake up again at 6. Sometimes we have to do a feeding around 1 if I put her to bed at 9. I have been going to bed around 10:30, and try to feed her as late as I can so I can get more sleep, but it seems she is ready for nighttime sleep after eating at 8:30 or 9. Not every night is the same, but the great thing about baby #4 is that I don’t obsess about schedules, yet have the experience and know-how to kind of get through anything. I have more perspective, I think, and am content to just enjoy it no matter what. I used to think everyone loved newborn life as much as I do, but I’m realizing it’s more of a club that only some women are part of. Some of us love it, others kind of “get through it” so they can get to the other phases that they love. I am so glad I can truly enjoy it! Maybe I will be that parent that really struggles to love pre-teen or teen years… who knows? I definitely have beef with threenagers… but doesn’t everybody? Of course it all comes with its struggles. But thankfully this has been my fastest recovery and I am feeling much more myself 5 weeks out (even 2 or 3 weeks I felt pretty well) and I am GRATEFUL because I know what it’s like to be in so much pain and feel so drained that it’s a struggle to care for the baby. I have still been taking it easy. It’s been a huge blessing to have had Raimo for 6 WEEKS of paternity leave! We never had any at all the previous two times I gave birth. It’s been nice to have time all together as a family, it’s been extremely helpful for the transition with our older kids to still have parent attention and love coming their way. We’ve really been working as a team, switching off children (though I’ve had Giselle most of the time plus a few others occasionally). I’ve tried to make intentional connections with my other kids over these weeks to make things smooth. I remember it being pretty rough each time we added a new child to the family. It just takes some adjusting as there is a little less of me to go around. Raimo is so sad to be going back to work after Labor Day in a week. And I am so sad too- I know it will be a hard week for sure. But a week after that my mother in law is coming to help so if I’m dying at least I’ll have help on the way. We have our life pretty much on a schedule though. School has started and we just kind of go through the day and … you do the best you can each day. The breastfeeding night sweats have eased up. And I’m now in this strange space where I’m trying to figure out what to wear. Breastfeeding is really limiting, and I’m also trying to squeeze back into some pretty tiny clothes, most of which I’m realizing are at least 3 years old, some more like 5 or 8 years old. I need some new everyday staples. I’m also in this place where I would normally be trying to eat healthy and smaller portions, but I am HUNgRY when I’m breastfeeding. I have to eat 3 really solid, heavy meals plus snacks to not feel light-headed and to keep that milk going. This kind of makes it impossible to be super fit, but it’s always just a phase for me until the breastfeeding is over. I don’t have much to complain about… but it just takes some getting used to.

Family theme…

As I mentioned before, we didn’t have time or brain power to come up with our family theme for the school year … at least not in time for our back to school feast. But we did think of one– actually Raimo came up with it, and I said, “Done.” So here it is

Finish the job.

I love it! We’ve been saying it already. I think it will be useful to teach our kids to see a task through to the end, whether it’s finishing homework, a chore, something at school, or anything really… just making sure to do the job well and to finish strong. Hopefully it can kind of become a family mantra. “Laitinen’s finish the job!”

Hey, we always have good intentions.

Every day Rose has been looking so stylish for school! I enjoy it so much. Come to think of it, after mentioning my own wardrobe, maybe I am living through her! I have taken a few snapshots.

Model girl. Raimo has been so good at getting up when Berrett wakes up, then making the kids breakfast and getting Rose ready. I try to schlep myself out of bed last minute to do her hair, and sometimes to get the scriptures and prayers done, and they leave by 7:50.. There are a few more school pics of her in my last post. Here is Finn joining in with the new-clothes fun.

His second year of preschool started! He says he wishes he could go to school every day, and I could actually see him doing well in Kindergarten (his birthday is February- he’s not even close to being 5.) But that means he’ll just be super ready when next year comes.

There are 10 boys and only 2 girls in his class this year! It’ll be interesting to see how it goes!

Berrett fell on the stairs and hit the railings, as evidenced by this picture. He already had a big bump on his head before it happened. He is always getting owies.

I was feeling sorry for him tonight because he was just kind of walking around upstairs while everyone else was getting ready for bed, so I put down Giselle and tried to rock him. He resisted a little bit (he feels so heavy and thick!) but he let me hold and snuggle him with his binkie and beloved blanket. And I took his hand and touched my cheek with his finger and said, “Cheek” and then had him touch his own cheek. And then put his finger on my nose and said, “Nose” and then touched his. He started giggling 🤭! It was adorable! We went through all the things… hair and ears and fingers and toes. Oh! And today I swear I heard him say, “I want yogurt.” It came out kind of gibberish, but I think the words are almost there, and that a little it of it is about to spill out. He’s gained so many new words lately.

Tonight we ate dinner in the backyard. The kids were excited. Then we went for a bike ride to the basketball court. It was perfect weather. We kept it short and sweet and headed home for bedtime.

Life is so good

First time in the Ergo 360. It is sooo comfortable. Wish I could have had it for all 4 babies!

Cute story: I told Finn I was hungry one morning while holding Giselle in bed, and he came upstairs a while later with this lovely breakfast for me… cold leftover pasta with raspberries on top! Haha it smelled so strongly of garlic. He really wanted me to eat it, and I definitely had a bite.

Seeing Christopher Robin- way too slow for our kids, but we really wanted to see a movie. We went on a school night. Who says we aren’t fun parents??

Good night!


Recent Happenings

Raimo has 6 weeks of paternity leave– it has been divine. We’re at 4 weeks and it’s going to be rough when he has to go back. There are just so many little kids, and they’re all making messes! Giselle is doing great. She still sleeps a ton… I keep waiting for the ball to drop, but it’s been lovely. She loves to sleep on our bed and in our arms. She also loves the swing though I don’t use it as much because Berrett can reach her there

I finished painting and wallpapering the girls’ room. It was a tough project! This is one piece I’m particularly proud of:

This strip on the left goes too to bottom. See that strip to the left of the window? Yeah it’s connected all the way up and down, one panel, and I had to trim it down that small just by the window. It was ridiculously hard.

I’m in love with the end product! It’s gorgeous in person, my photos don’t do it justice.

I adore getting a baby girl dressed every day and putting cute headbands on her💕

We had visitors last Saturday- Ana Maria and her kids came by and it was so fun for all our kids to be together! We have successfully created a dance partner for everyone, my girl-boy-boy-girl for her boy-girl-girl-boy! The kids had a great time together!

The next day all our cousins came over: Kari and Sarah and Mikko and Nicole’s families. It was fun to have them all over. Rose and Finn were in heaven, and they got to go have a sleepover at the hotel with their cousins.

Finn and Parker have been little buddies, and this trip Rose and Parker finally got to know each other and played really well together and even held hands!

Giselle has her first bath in her baby puj tub. She has not had many baths since being born 🤣

I painted the girls’ room the next morning, and it kinda took all day. That night we met everybody at the Spectrum and had CPK. It was a whirlwind of a weekend but so many good memories.

Back to school shopping, all done online through Nordstrom Rack this year! So easy!

Rose had her first day of school on the 15th– she had a great first day with her TWO teachers! She got to play play dough and play bubbles so she was excited! Hopefully it will be a great year. The next day was Berrett’s birthday, and I already posted all about that. We did our back to school dinner the night before school started, and we kept it verrrry simple– paper plates, no pictures or even a theme (I’d still like to think of one, but I was low on brain power). We had watermelon and kabobs. We talked about our Love at Home theme from last year. Then Raimo gave each child father’s blessings.

Today we spent the day kind of catching our breath (and I painted a bit of trim and the closet door to finish off my project). In the evening we went to the beach. To be honest, it wasn’t great because Rose and Finn really complained about it, and when we got there (Cassidy St) the tide was so high there wasn’t much beach to sit on. But we set up, and it was a beautiful day. Of course, after an hour or so the kids were running in the waves and having a great time, but the initial grumpiness really spoiled it for me. Plus Berrett is not so fun at the beach. But the water was gorgeous. And it was Giselle’s first beach day! 4 weeks old and she had fun sleeping the whole time in the Solly wrap. I didn’t even have to feed her while we were there. We got some In N Out afterward and came home, washed up and made chocolate chip cookies. We’re reading parental books right now that came recommended, and I am hoping to learn some new things and fix some things. Wish us luck!

and this one still has the sweetest, longest baby toes in all the land!


8-16-18 Berrett turns 2!!!

Can’t believe my baby is 2! This post is to update all things Berrett. He is so adorable!

Chick-Fil-A lunch for our Ber. He got up extremely early, as he has been lately. Like 4:30 a.m. early. Raimo had to hang with him, and I had Giselle. It was Rose’s second day of school, so we were up doing that bustle. But I sang him happy birthday when Berrett came into my room. He was not sure if he should smile or not 🙂 He was really tired, and hasn’t been eating much on top of it. We took him to lunch to try to help his sour mood. After that he finally had a nap. Look at him post-nap 💖

Whenever I hold up my phone he says, “Cheeee.” Here’s his list of words:

Mama, Dadda

car sounds

“more” sign and recently he’s been saying it too

Nana=banana, all food

Hi, bye, waves

Diddy- Finn or dad in pictures



All done

Mamen (Amen)

After he drinks, he says Ahhh

He’s also babbling a lot and making noise to communicate. He’s done some speech therapy this year, and is now doing infant education which is in-home. It was recommended by his neurologist and has been good for him to have that one-on-one time and focus on him.

Here are some things he likes to eat:

Corn on the cob, applesauce, apples, blueberries, pears, strawberries, larabars, fig bars, instant oatmeal, cream of wheat, Cheerios, yogurt, pasta with red sauces, potatoes of all kinds, French fries, waffles

Some of his favorite toys are the little remote control fire truck that makes noise and that can be pulled around the house, his train with pop-ups and music, his “cookie jar” with music and shapes that fit inside. He loves to go outside so much. He can open the back door, and he’ll go out and play in the dirt and walk all over the yard. He’ll throw the dirt up and all over his body. He makes a ton of mischief.

He loves trash cans. One of his pastimes is taking household objects and throwing them away… Tupperware, my scriptures, remotes, you name it. We thought of getting him a trash can for his birthday… no kidding. We have to check the trash before throwing it out. He can open the oven door, stand on it, and jump on it. He was interested in playing with the gas burners, but thankfully has given that up with some knob covers. He climbs up my piano to reach things. He climbs on the countertops and gives me a heart attack. He loves the new baby and is also very curious about her. He makes kissy noises when he sees her and like to give her kisses. He also gets over excited and sometimes bites her. He also likes to grab her or pinch… he is mainly curious and pretty clueless about what a baby is. I don’t think he’s malicious.

Berrett has charmed us all with his big eyes, big cheeks, and little mouth and beautiful hair. He is so handsome! I’ve loved his innocent one-year-old expressions. He is truly sweet and has a big smile. Fun fact: he has an extra tooth! It’s a baby tooth so it will fall out. I have loved these two years with him. He has been my main snuggle buddy and spent many nights in my bed. He likes to look out the windows at the top if the stairs that look out to the street– he looks out for daddy!

He has a few favorite books: Pout Pout Fish (he gives kisses right in the pages of the book when he becomes a kiss kiss fish!), Baby’s First Words picture book, The Boat Book, and Goodnight Moon.

He enjoys books a lot, though they don’t hold his attention for long so you have to be quick!

He loves to march all over the house and explore. Hes been quite temperamental lately– acting very much the toddler that he is. I love him!!!!

For his birthday dinner I made some of his favorite foods– baked potatoes and corn on the cob. He had 3 ears of corn!

He also got some presents

I don’t have a picture, but it’s on the video camera. He had Better-than-anything cake and did not blow out the candles (but he started blowing when he saw me put them on the cake because he’d had a practice run on his pancakes the day before). I think he had a nice birthday.

Here are some photos looking backward on his life:


He always did have a beautiful head of hair

I am right in the same phase of babydom right now. Berrett was such a sweet baby. He loved to cuddle and  was such a mama’s boy.


First birthday!


His spot in the bed


Love that Bear Bear!


Getting things done

We’ve been working on our girls’ room little by little–I spent the majority of my pregnancy sort of online “window shopping” for it. I was seriously excited to get to put together a girly nursery/shared room for Rose and the baby. We were too poor to really buy any furniture or decorate a room when Rose was born (we didn’t really even have a dedicated space for her–we moved 3 times the year she was born). And then we had a boy so it was a shared space and I couldn’t really go pink or feminine with anything, plus we were renting and saving for a house. SO anyway, it’s more for my own satisfaction than anything… We started by splitting the bunk bed, which I made Reed and Raimo do because I was pregnant. Here’s the before of the two rooms:

I bought a new crib this time around since Berrett is just 23 months and will continue to use his crib for the next year. It feels like a rite of passage to get to pick a crib for your baby.

Here’s the little gold crib I picked.

We got it up in June over our anniversary staycation. Next came the dresser. I was actually quite anxious to get this taken care of because I was nesting hardcore, and because all 3 of our children were sharing one dresser in the boys’ room, plus I had gotten out all my baby girl boxes and washed and folded all the tiny things, and they needed a home. We were getting close to the due date, and I was having a hard time choosing because the room doesn’t have a lot of space (initially I was thinking vertical dresser under the window between the two beds) but I wanted a horizontal dresser for more storage and so I’d have the option of putting a changing station on top of it. I picked this one from Joss & Main

I loved the gold knobs to match and the sweet details of the feet and the drawers. Luckily I got it on an even better sale than it’s listed here. It took hours and hours to put together but I guess that’s why you save so much money buying this way. We got the dresser built, and I went into labor in the middle of that night! It was physical work building the dresser, I tell ya!

Hi Giselle! 👋

So I’ve been a bit land-locked since then and haven’t had a chance to finish the room. My mom did come and help me sort and load all of the baby clothes, plus all the other kids’ clothes, and donate old things and put away too-small things. She also washed and put the crib bedding on which was gifted by my aunt! I felt much better about life once it was done and I could dress my baby in a myriad of adorable options! 🎀

I had to buy a bassinet while in the hospital (thanks Amazon) because I threw out my hand-me-down one that was kind of falling apart earlier this year. It was cheapish, but another thing on the list (ummm diapers??) We also realized I threw out the baby bathtub…oops. We’ve been making do, but just bought a puj today so it’s on the way. Sorry Giselle. No baths for you!!!

Next came blinds. A couple of months ago the blinds on the larger window fell down in this room, and since then a sheet has been hanging there for a window covering. I ordered some cordless blinds for the two windows (I hope to go cordless all through the house eventually–most of our blinds are extremely old and have very long cords, which is a child hazard. In fact, Berrett has actually had one of them around his neck before and luckily I was right beside him to remove it and put it it of reach. SO I hope to replace them, and in the meantime all of the cords are tied up high, and we’ve had talks with the older kids about keeping the cords up and telling mom if one is ever accidentally let down. Just realized this is the longest “aside” inside parentheses maybe ever).

I bought these cordless white faux wood blinds from selectblinds.com and they seem great so far. I should add that I also painted the interior of the window trims white because whoever painted this room light blue took the paint all the way in to the windows, and I don’t want the blue poking through after I change the room color (light, light pink or peach?!?) The blinds look really nice and are pretty easy to maneuver. My only complaint is that the website only specifies if they’ll be inside mount or outside mount blinds (I wanted them mounted inside the window frame) but the hardware didn’t allow us to hang them from the side, only from the top of the window. This didn’t work for us because there is an arch.

So I made Raimo buy a 2×4 and have it cut just the right size. Luckily he talked to a guy at Home Depot who recommended the perfect hardware to hang it with. I painted it white and he got it up this morning. It sounds simple, but it’s actually been a long delayed process and I’m really glad it’s done, and no longer have blinds sitting in the baby crib and screws lying around and tools all over. Raimo got the blinds to attach to the 2×4 and it all worked out. I already had this arch covering, and it sits nicely on top. Hooray! Do you ever have little projects like this that sit in your mind for a long time and nag at you?

So that was a big check mark on my list today. Next up is finding the perfect paint color to go with this wallpaper

The lighting is not very good in these pictures, but this is what the paper looks like in daylight:

I love love love this wallpaper and have had my eye on it for a long time. I caught it on sale 20% off at Anthropologie, and had to jump on it! Im nervous about the process of wallpapering because I’ve never done it before. Especially with the arch window and the angled ceiling! I’m going to put it on this accent wall, and paint the other 3 walls. This is what I have in mind for the wall color… a very very light pink or peach

I like how calming it is with such bold paper. Wish me luck in finding the perfect match!

After that, I think I’ll finally be at peace with the room for a bit. Of course, it’d be nice to have a soft rug underfoot (we have cork floors in the bedrooms) but that will have to wait awhile. I’d also like to find a new way to store all those children’s books, maybe get a bigger white bookshelf, or do some cute flat displays on the walls like this. Raimo will kill me when I show him the tutorial for making it–very overwhelming! But so cute!

I also really love the rolling acrylic shelf in this picture. It’s nice to have some books on display and some that you can roll right next to the bed. We have SOOoo many books though. They’d never fit. We need to move some over to the boy room. Speaking of which, the boys’ room kind of has a loose theme of sailboats with blue and navy and kind of primary colors. Eventually I picture moving the bunk bed in there for them and getting some cute navy and white striped bedding. The walls are dark grey with white beadboard, and I’m fine with it for now, but I would like to eventually paint it all white, or something lighter since there’s only 1 window. I used these fabrics to make their pillowcases at a Relief Society activity, and I’d love to make curtains or something to match

I’m also thinking about what I’d like to put on the girls’ walls. I recently found this girl on Instagram — she makes the cutest name signs

I love all my kids’ names so much and seeing them written out makes me happy. Maybe something like that above each head of the bed. The boy ones are cute too

And I’d love to put a rectangle one over our front door in the entryway for the Laitinens 06-07-08. Love seeing our date 💕

Other ideas: we got a ton of beautiful photos from Giselle’s newborn shoot, so I could put up a few of those over her crib and maybe a few other girly things. I also love this print. I’ve been starting to collect artwork that has mother/family themes

These are a few I have from Caitlin Connolly that I love. Everything she does is so good and meaningful

And I love this one

by Brian Kershisnik. I’ve been meaning to move it to my room over the white bassinet– I think it would be sweet there.

This post is full of TANGENTS! It feels kind of nice to get down all my thoughts about what I want to do with my house. I sit inside it all day long and come up with plans and ideas for it. I did the same thing when I had Berrett. Our house was a bit different then. We had no couch when he was born, no rug, lots of empty walls and spaces to fill and organize. It takes a lot of money to furnish a house, and it takes a lot of thought to make it the way you want it and to make it feel like home. It has definitely come a long way. I should probably take some pictures of what the house looks like now (when it’s all cleaned up!) just to record what it looks like… because I enjoy putting it all together. And I like pretty things 🙂

Another tangent: I went back to re-read this after posting, and my phone had corrected “I’ve been starting tonsillectomy artwork” in place of “I’ve been starting to collect artwork” and for some reason it is SOo funny to me right now at 10 pm. I’m still laughing! What would tonsillectomy artwork look like????? 😂😂😭😭I’m crying. So tired.

A few more baby girl room ideas:

I really like this statement closet door that Young House Love did in their girl’s room. After finding the perfect lightest pink for the walls, I think I’d like to do this with a bolder pinky coral. And add a crystal knob 🙂 Here’s some pink on pink for an idea

I like this shade on this dresser

Also, white curtains or window treatments. If we finish this room by the time she’s 18 we’ll be golden!! Lol. If I were Young House Live, I’d also put white shiplap on the ceiling. I think it’d be cool (or dool, thanks autocorrect) since the ceiling is an interesting shape.

Instead of working on my house projects, I’m usually just cleaning up and caring for my kids. I can’t imagine how that mess just builds up so many times each day…

I spend a lot of my time fixing things they break and just putting things back together all day long. There are also random House things we have to take care of all the time too that get in the way, and it’s annoying. Case in point, yesterday while sanding that 2×4 with an electric sander, something went wrong with 2 electrical outlets outside. One of them had my beautiful outdoor lights plugged into it (now not working) and one in our garage had our hot water heater plugged into it!!! 😱😱😱 Today I got the idea to hook the hot water heater to an extension cord till we can get an electrician here (and no, playing with the breakers didn’t work. I was standing barefoot outside with my newborn switching them on and off in the blazing heat… not what you imagine when you dream of home ownership). We spend a lot of our time trying to keep our house together and just doing upkeep. It’s rough. Also both of our ceiling fans now have various issues and don’t work.

This is getting boring. More artwork!

I bought this print a long time ago, and i still need to have it framed. I love it!!! I may put it over Roses bed if it matches the room. Everything this artist does is really whimsical and old fashioned

This one would be so cute in a bathroom

Some other art I love

Any seascape

And I’d love to do a DIY of this “do the cha cha” … I think it’s perfect for us!

I’m still loving our outdoor setup that I bought in the spring. I thought for sure I’d sit out there a lot in the summer. And we did before it got hot, but the last few months iVe just been staying indoors. But sometimes in the evening we’ll go out with friends. The other night we were playing Go Fish with Ben and Liz. The things Finn was saying were hilarious. He just doesn’t really get the game, for example he was too excited to hand over one of his cards when it meant someone else was getting a match. Yes I DO have a sea turtle!! Hooray here you go kind of thing. Too sweet. And an awesome use of this outdoor space. And I enjoy the lights every night. I think we’ll use it a lot again as it cools off in the fall.

All of the little details feel like progress. Yay for house progress! 🙂


More on Giselle Juliette

As I mentioned in this post I have some songs that I would sing for each of my newborns. Maybe I am just too far removed from singing these days, but Giselle doesn’t really have a song. I need to sing to her more! I am binge watching Nashville, in which the main character is named Juliette, and I’m loving the name! Did we make the right name choice?! I mean, should we have saved her middle name, Juliette, for a future baby girl?!? I still love Giselle for my baby–I think it fits her!

She fits in the crook of my knee.

Little Elle hit her due date on Monday, August 6th. She is 2 1/2 weeks old, and still sleepy, but starting to wake up now and again. I love that she naps all the time–it is so easy, and one can only dream that we have finally had a child that will happily sleep on her own…

I’m not holding my breath.

Lately I’ve been noticing that my hands always smell amazing- like milk and babies. Seriously, it is so good. Giselle has such a good smell, particularly her hair! She has the silkiest short brown hair and I looove rubbing it. Will we have a non-blonde child??? We shall see! She also has long spider fingers, and she’s always doing things with them, curling them up by her face or opening and spreading them across her face.

We still delight in the funny ways she can wiggle her long toes. Hers are the longest of our children by far, and it is a moment of pride for Raimo that they’ve inherited the long toes 😂 Oh and the dimples! She has darling dimples that come through when she smiles! I die over them!

Rose is so funny– one day soon after bringing the baby home, I asked her if she wanted to help change the baby’s diaper and she totally freaked out! Like ran out of the room. Tonight I asked her again, and she didn’t want to even be present! I think it’s so funny, and we keep telling her that newborn poo is really no big deal. Otherwise, she is a highly devoted big sister, but that devotion has limits apparently! She is still always asking to hold The baby.

Baby’s knees are SO far apart– she’s a little cowgirl. I can still fold her leggies across each other and her little feet bend right into womb position. I’ll try to capture it in a pic. But I can totally see how she was folded up inside of me. The amazing thing is looking at her head (thought it’s really not that big) and knowing it was sitting in my pelvis, upside down for about 8 weeks… i definitely felt that weight and pressure, especially this time (maybe it’s increasingly lower the more babies you have?)

Fort builders:

Post nap

Pics on her due date:


The wallpaper I’m planning to put up soon– love this peachy wall color to match and still need to go paint shopping, and finish some projects in the girls’ room. Today I made Raimo buy a 2×4 at Home Depot and we got it cut to fit inside this really weird window that has an arch. The blinds I bought will be attached to the bottom of the 2×4 and an arch window covering will sit on top of it. We sanded and painted, and are hanging hardware… just tedious stuff. But it’ll be nice to have new cordless blinds that are clean and new and safe. All our house’s blind have extremely long cords and it’s really challenging keeping them out of reach of kids.

Sunday meeting her BFF Gwen

That’s all for now, folks!


All is safely gathered in

At the end of the day, our house has a certain peace about it. Or maybe it’s that my heart feels at peace. A new baby brings a bit of heaven wherever she goes, and I think that’s got something to do with it. She is snuggled in the crook of my arm after drinking all the milk she can handle (milk drunk baby, eyelids floating up now and again) and all my wee bairns are sound asleep on their beds, and I feel happy. I know the dishes are in the washer, and the house is mostly picked up, and my outdoor string lights are still making me happy when they flick on each night and cast a romantic glow. Home. We have lived here 2 years, and the things inside our house evolve and move over time, but there is a feeling that pervades no matter what and makes it OUR home.

We had a busy day today, starting with newborn photos at 9 am. I got out of bed a little earlier today, bleary-eyed and quite hungry. Got all 6 of us (weird to say that) ready in time, and finished 3 hours later. It’s an endeavor, but so worth it to have those pictures later on. I can’t wait to see them–I know we got some beautiful shots! I promised the big kids slurpies if they did well during photos. They get excited about it, but always end up wanting gum or other things instead.

Then this afternoon Raimo aka super dad took the kids to the beach, and then to the pool at the Y afterward. Meanwhile, Giselle and I passed the freak out (hahah!) for almost 3 hours. We slept so long, the AC went into eco mode and stopped running because it sensed no one was home! I woke up in a sweat and had to crank it back down, or rather tap it back down on my iPhone app.

For dinner we went to Subway, and it was disappointing. Isn’t it always? But it was an easy outing and the kids were pleasant and Giselle slept in her car seat the whole time. My recovery has been relatively quick this fourth time around, and while I have not dealt with as much postpartum pain as I did previously, I keep realizing I’m still in recovery and need some rest. I’ll walk too far and realize I’m extremely sore, or I’ll move a new way and realize that that muscle still hurts, or I’ll sit straight down on my tailbone which still hurts. I also have that special pain in the middle of my back from breastfeeding so much (not to mention the actual “breast” pains). Again, I feel very lucky that I’m up and about so much more and feeling pretty well. Giselle and I are taking advantage of Raimo’s 6 week paternity leave, and we rest and cuddle and let dad be with the older kids.

It’s 10:45 so I really do need to get to sleep. When I feed her this late, Elle has been waking up around 2:30 or 3 and then 6 for feedings. It’s really not bad — I’m happy to get a 4 hours stretch. I think she’s adapting to “night time” sleep as opposed to daytime. I must say I’m getting pretty tired getting up at 6 because that’s an impossible time for me to fall back asleep. Hence the naps.

Also, here is the smiley face breakfast Rose made me all by herself yesterday. She has been delightful today. Being helpful, being nice to Finn and not trying to one-up him, waiting to eat her chips at Subway till he finished his sandwich like her. What a sweetie.

Also, Giselle weighed in at 6 lbs 14 oz at her second doctors visit yesterday, so she has regained her birthweight and is doing well! She is 12 days old!




In dreams

What are you dreaming about, little one? Your eyelids are fluttering, you smile occasionally, sometimes you breathe a little more quickly. But can you have any thoughts at this point? Do you know anything other than “milk” and the comfort that is mother’s voice? You startle so easily in your sleep. It’s incredible how you can sleep through the noise of your siblings and our hectic household, yet I bump a pillow a few inches away from you and your arms fly into the air. Dainty as the princess and the pea–you feel everything? I love your sleepy days and honestly dread the possibility of you waking from this coma and going into constant crying mode, as many newborns do. You are too perfect, too easy! Let’s keep it this way as long as we can! It’s unfair really because right now, of all time with babies, is the best time to take you out because you’re so easy. Trips to the grocery, movies, nail salon, you name it… are all so easy because you’re ASLEEP! And as soon as I start to feel well again postpartum, you will be crying! Okay I’m only half-serious. I do want you to wake up so we can get to know you even better. You wake up for little brief periods of time, and I try to bring my face in close so you can see me and start to know ME. Yep, it’s me. The one that gets up with you all night long, that speaks to you when you’re sleeping, that totes you happily all around the house like a trophy. I won this. I made this! Look how great she is! These are days that I spend wondering who you will become. You have already surpassed my wildest dreams, so really where can you go wrong? I already love you so much💗




So Tired

I have been spending a lot of my breastfeeding hours catching up on blogs that I like. As in years worth of content because I don’t really follow any of them closely. But I love NieNieDialogues and she shared this quote by Neil A Marriott, and it rang true with me and my eyes burst into tears when I read just the first line (mostly because I’m just so tired, and will only become more tired in the coming days).

“My days were full of forgettable things like folding laundry,

reading children’s books, and putting casseroles together for dinner.

Sometimes in the harbor of our homes, we can’t see that by the simple,

consistent acts—including family prayer, scripture study,

and family home evening—great things are brought to pass.

But I testify that these very acts carry eternal significance.

Great joy comes when those little boats—our children—grow

into mighty seafaring vessels filled with gospel light and ready to

“embark in the service of God.” Our small acts of faith

and service are how most of us can continue in

God and eventually bring eternal light and glory to our family,

our friends, and our associates.

You truly carry a circle of influence with you!”

Neil A Marriott

Thanks Neil! Another favorite scripture that comes to mind is D&C 64:33 “Wherefore, be not weary in well-doing, for ye are laying the foundation of a great work. And out of small things proceedeth that which is great.”

Send me all the mom quotes! Diving back in with FOUR! 😘😨😜🤪🤩😍😍😍😍