Beautiful Chaos

Finding adventure in the everyday
Browsing Holidays

Birthday prep


All of my free time this week has gone towards party planning. Making puffs. Making giant flowers. Making little flowers. Making headbands. Planning games and music and treats.

And I am loving (almost) every second of it. The only hard part is that I don’t get much time to consistently work. It goes like this: I’m just starting to get into a project and someone needs me. So I go help them, then have to get my head back in the crafting zone only to get torn away again. That never feeling settled into something is really hard.

But I’m really excited about all the beauty! I can’t wait to show you all in a few days.

This is Layla’s 3rd friend party and by far the one I’ve planned the most. In the past 2 years I’ve been a part of some really thought out meals and retreats and I’ve seen how important beauty is. I’ve seen how special a table can be. How meaningful all the details are.

So, I’m paying attention to detail. I’m going all out. I’m making this party special. And I’m hoping that all my focus on the beauty doesn’t mean it will be boring! Ha!

I know we’ll all have a blast!

Here’s a sneak peak




Arizona vacation


We were only in AZ for 8 days, but it sure felt a lot longer. We really packed those 8 days full of adventure and wedding prep/celebrations. There were very few still moments.

I’m not gonna lie, traveling with 3 little ones had me really stressed out. For months before the trip. And how’d it go? Totally fine. They all did amazing. No crying, no whining “are we there yet?” And even though both the trip there and back started around bedtime, no one fell apart 3 hrs later as we got off the plane, grabbed bags and found cars.

Our adventures included: picnic and playing at Prospector Park, climbing Silly Mountain (twice), going to this Wildlife Zoo thing (I apparently never caught the name) and horseback riding. It was all so fun to watch the kids discover and play and explore. There is a great fenced in back yard at Trav’s parent’s house out there so the kids spent every other moment running and playing in the dirt.

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It was 80 every day. Blue skies. Perfect. It was so nice to wear short sleeves and run around barefoot.

My 5 slept in the same room all together. We were in bed by 9 and up at 6. We were a tired bunch but we filled our days full of sunshine and movement.

Then we got into wedding mode. Painting signs, getting wedding favor jars ready, clothes shopping, putting up lights…And then the wedding. I unfortunately didn’t get many pictures of that. My bad. I’m sure I’ll get some and then I’ll post them and show them off. Highlights: The wedding was beautiful. Layla was a flower girl. We danced and danced at the reception. I got to wear a pretty new dress. It was a great day.

And now it’s great to be home.

Making Christmas


When I was little, Christmas happened all around me. It was a time when everything was so exciting and beautiful and carefree. Everything seemed magical. Every year.

I’ve been trying to figure out lately why it doesn’t feel that way now as an adult. Even after I learned the truth about Santa, Christmas still felt like this amazing time of surprises and lights and special activities. So what changed? Why does it just feel like a busy time, still special in its own way, but different?
And what I’ve decided is, it’s because now I’m making Christmas. I’m in charge of buying/wrapping gifts and even coordinating their shopping/wrapping times. I’m in charge of decorating and making our home feel like Christmas. I’m in charge of coming up with and implementing special crafts associated with Christmas. It’s on me to organize and schedule any Christmas activities and light sight seeing trips around the neighborhoods. It’s even up to me to make known the real reason for the season.


We make Christmas happen for these little ones at our house. Just like my mom and dad did for me. So no, Christmas isn’t happening to me as much these days, it’s happening through me. And that’s okay.
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Holiday mode


Every year when a major holiday rolls around I go into planning/organizing/coordinating mode. The mom in me wants to make it all perfect. I want the house, the food, the activities to all run like clockwork. Smooth. Seamless. So there are memories and not laundry. Memories and not dishes. Memories and not chaos.

Of course it’s the chaos that makes some of the best memories, and the kids won’t notice laundry, but I think the mess takes away my focus. I think I can be more present when everything else is taken care of and off my mind.┬áSo, that means these days I start thinking about thanksgiving way in advance. This year, 10 days before it actually gets here. I’ve been planning food to share at various get togethers, food for me to eat (since I have to be so careful about anything touching gluten and then touching anything I’m eating), food for the long weekend, grocery trips, coop trips, and Christmas gift scheming.
We’ve got some pretty ambitious gifts planned from various family members this year and they involve some serious leg work up front. Chalk board painting a wall for their artistic/learning pleasure (however they will just thinking we’re painting a random wall until Christmas when they open up the chalk!), and building bunk beds behind the locked door of our “Christmas Present Room”. Anyhow, those things plus Christmas shopping for our gifts to them will take up our Saturdays from now until the main event.
Hey, I’m not complaining. I totally get into the planning thing. If I can get all of the nessecary info out of my head and onto a daily planner, I’m set. No panic, just following the plan that leads to a carefree long weekend with my family.


That being said, I’d like to learn to be present in the moments when the house is a disaster and my brain is even more jumbled. I’d like to learn to not let the mess and unplanned events cause turmoil within me.
But maybe there is a balance. A good friend always talks about holding both things in your hand. Meaning, it doesn’t have to be one or the other but can be both. I am a planner. It’s just my nature and planning an amazing weekend for my family is really fun for me. But if I can’t get there? If I can’t get everything just the way I want it, then I can still choose to ignore the piles of laundry strewn all over my house. I can choose to overlook the crumbs from a weeks worth of meals all over my kitchen floors. I can choose to be in the moments with my family and let that be where my focus is, regardless of the rest.
Honestly, just writing that is stressing me out. Soooo, we’ll call that plan B.
Do you do major planning before the holidays?