LOOSE PARTS PLAY

October 28, 2016

I'm not sure where I have been, but I've just come to learn the term "loose parts" in reference to early education and play and I've become obsessed with the idea behind it. I stumbled upon the term over on Instagram through some inspiring Montessori, Waldorf and Mama accounts I love and have been having so much fun gathering as many loose parts as I can find around the house and in nature to put in trays and baskets for my girl to explore. I love that by offering her random objects she's forced to use her imagination in a brand new way. Traditionally with Montessori and how I set our playroom up, materials are set out and intended to be completed in a certain fashion. What I love about this is the child's ability to be independent and how it encourages a sense of accomplishment and confidence by being able to work to completion. There is a lot of space and opportunity in Montessori for creativity and art but not typically in this way - where materials are just offered to them and it's up to them to create. 

From around our house and in our yard we were able to put several trays and baskets together including, cubes, circular disks, leaves, rocks, sticks, and beads. We started saving the tops to all of our squeezies and our toilet paper and paper towel rolls as well. I also deconstructed some of our Montessori materials that Ru doesn't use much right now to create a tray of spindles, tablets, and counters, but again it will be totally up to her to decide what to do with them- earlier she created a robot with them and right now she is cooking her leaves, rocks and sticks in her play kitchen. She also discovered that if she places the wooden cubes in an interesting design, she can create a maze and uses the beads to navigate it. So cool! I can't wait to see where this new type of play takes her and her imagination! 

HALLOWEEN, THEN AND NOW

October 27, 2016

I've never been a big fan of Halloween - I suppose I enjoyed it as a child, dressing up and trick or treating around my neighborhood with friends, but I wasn't one of the kids who got so in to my costume and counted down all year long for it. Then in high school and college when friends were so excited for costume parties, I was a dud. I appeased friends and joined in on coordinating costumes (and usually had a ton of fun) but I still needed motivation to do so. But now, being a mom, it's like all those years of feeling pretty lackluster about the holiday has caught up to me and I'm making up for lost excitement. I freaking LOVE Halloween - helping my daughter choose what she wants to be, decorating our home, getting in the fall and halloween spirit - it's all just too much fun. Children have an incredible way of making us relive (or discover) childhood fun and what a gift that is. To not only see the world through their eyes, but to experience it too. 

On our hands this year we've got a lion and a polar bear and goodness sakes is it cute. HAPPY HALLOWEEEN to all! What are your littles being? Also, do you dress up with them? I think family costumes are my new favorite thing!

MOTHERHOOD, RIGHT NOW

October 12, 2016


Good grief is motherhood a doozy of a time. I mean is there anything on earth as amazing and terrible at the exact same time? Right now, motherhood for me looks like this:

One of my girls wakes up between 6:30 and 7 which means they both wake up between 6:30 and 7 which means we all wake up between 6:30 and 7.

Downstairs for breakfast, coffee, and usually a show or two while we ease into the day. I also usually reheat my coffee 87 times between the hours of 7 am 10 am.

Then up Wren and I go so I can get her down for her first nap. On the two mornings Ru has preschool we quickly change clothes, pack lunches and Wren takes her nap when we get home from drop off.

While Wreny naps, Ru and I usually play in the playroom together, do an art project or play something in the yard. We've been going through an incredibly frustrating few months where she will not do anything at home alone or in another room if me or Nick are not with her. It is extremely exhausting and we're trying to work with her on ways to make independent play fun and exciting. (I'm open to suggestions.)

When Wren wakes up I like to try to get out for errands or a walk or to the playground. Then lunch and usually another nap for Wren. Ru usually watches another show while I try to get her down for her afternoon nap. (It is the only thing she'll do alone and has been my saving grace during this season of mamahood.)

The hours of 3pm-6pm last 100 years and we are purely just trying to survive during this time frame. Somewhere in there I do usually get dinner cooked but the whole process is generally a shit show.

Bedtime starts between 6:30 and 7 for Wren and 7:30 for Ru so after dinner if we can sneak in a quick family walk we do and then the majority of our evening is spent trying to get children to sleep. Ru usually has no trouble at all (Thank the Heavens above) but Wren is possibly the world's worst baby sleeper and we've just accepted this fact and are trying to move on. I'm ready for her to be 3. (Kidding. Sort of.)

Then, maybe around 8 or 8:30 If i can keep my eyeballs open Nick and I might watch a show or have a drink on the couch together and chat. But usually I take a bath and go to bed because motherhood. I'll be up in an hour when Wren wakes up for the first of about 5 times throughout the night. (If there's important husband/wife info that needs discussing, I'll just email him tomorrow.) In the midst of my day of mothering, i'm also trying to finish unpacking and organizing our home and run a business. I'd be cool with a year long vacation if someone offered.

For real though, motherhood right now is hard. And good. But mostly hard. The most amazing thing is that I love their freaking guts and would take these days over anything else in the world. Ahhhh, motherhood.

HOME SWEET HOME

October 11, 2016

Welp, here we are, a little over a week in and gosh does it feel good to be getting settled, knowing we aren't going anywhere for a long, long while. It has been so strange, this past year, wanting to be settled in our rental but knowing that come fall we would be moving into our 'forever home.' It was was such an odd thing. But now! Now, we're here unpacking boxes and putting our favorite things in their places and it. feels. good. When we were planning what new furniture, textiles and decor we would be needing to complete the space, we knew we wanted a really large, bold, beautiful rug for our main living area. We searched for what seemed like forever and finally landed on this beauty from ECARPETGALLERY (We looked on their sit nearly every day for 6 months or so) and we couldn't be happier with it. (It's the hand-knotted Royal Heriz Dark Copper Wool Rug, FYI :) If you are looking for the perfect rug but are at a loss for where to start, the rug blog from ecarpetgallery is a good place to get some inspo. I was talking to a friend recently who has been on the hunt for over a year - buying a large rug is a big decision so I totally get that. We wanted something that would work well with our couch and end chair that we wouldn't get sick of looking at day in and day out because of how our home is laid out. The living room, entry, kitchen area is all one big room and of course where we spend the majority of our time. This decision was a big one for us. 

On another note, I'm excited to start talking more about city living with kids and hear from other's who are right in the thick of city life with kids. I feel like there is so much to learn and navigate as a mother raising kids surrounded by so much good and bad. What do I tell my daughter about the man who just walked down our street not wearing any shoes? Or why those folks were shouting on the corner? Or why she can't touch anything on the ground in that little city park on the corner? I'm kind of like, what in the world are we doing here? But I'm also like, how amazing is this!? Let's walk to the playground! Ice cream shop! Donut shop! Library! To see daddy at work! There is so much good and i'm only just beginning to learn how to navigate it all. So far I've been as honest as I can be but am keeping in mind that she is only 3 and I do need to protect her heart from anything that might feel scary to her. She knows that some people are homeless and we talk about how that would make us feel and if there is anything we could do to help. It's so hard to know what to be open and honest about with her (and eventually our baby) while also wanting to maintain her sweet innocence and naiveness.  I'd love input from others in a similar living situation!

and P.S. As a bonus for you all in honor of our new home, ecarpetgallery is offering you 20% off your first purchase with the coupon code ECGBLOGOURCITYHOUSE . WhooHoo! Happy rug shopping!

WE ARE HERE!

October 3, 2016


It's been a whirlwind of a weekend but we are here, in our home and we cannot think of a place we would rather be. I'm sitting at my kitchen island typing this and I just keep thinking, I've never had a kitchen island! It's amazing! And so surreal. The rooms of our home are coming together just as we had envisioned them and I can't wait to show you the whole place when it's done. If you have been following this journey of ours from the beginning, thanks so much for sticking around and for all the supportive words you have offered. It's hard to believe now that we started working on this dream of ours 2 years ago. We prayed, planned, got scared, got excited, felt stressed but landed here. Home. Right where we belong. More to come.
 

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