A Cross Country Move…with 3 kids

A Cross Country Move…with 3 kids

Tyler and I are definitely west coast-ish people – he grew up in Colorado and I grew up in Arizona. We’ve spent most of our marriage living in Arizona as well. I am a desert dweller; I love the heat, swimming all summer and wearing sandals in December.

So when the opportunity came up for us to move to Virginia for a year-long internship program, it seemed about as far away as moving to a different country. We decided to take it as an adventure and went ahead and made the jump to relocate to Charlottesville, Virginia in July. … Read the rest

Faux Brick Wall – tips & tricks

Faux Brick Wall – tips & tricks

I love, love accent walls. In our last house I had a wood panel wall and a stenciled wall, but in this house I wanted to try something different. I see houses with amazing exposed brick walls and love them, but unfortunately, our house is a basic builder grade Arizona track home…no brick. So, I read pretty much every tutorial on faux brick panels I could find on Pinterest and decided to go for it. There are great tutorials out there so I won’t step by step, but I thought I’d give a few tips and tricks to help anyone who might want to tackle it.… Read the rest

When writing about real life sucks.

When writing about real life sucks.

Real lifeish. That’s what we named this blog. When we did it, I intended to share the real parts of our life. You know, dirty dishes, funny kid anecdotes, even home renovation mistakes. The really real stuff. I thought, “We won’t filter our life and make it seem like Pinterest.” We’ll be authentic and honest. Never did I think that it might mean sharing tragedy and really hard things. I struggled with whether to even write this. But, it didn’t feel right to have a blog about real life and then leave out one of the most impacting experiences of our life.Read the rest

when you don’t write a blog for almost two months

I wish I had a great excuse for why there has been nothing new on our blog for almost two months. But, I don’t. The truth is (and this blog is all about sharing the truth) that it has been the busiest few months of our entire life – literally. We’ve had event after event after event and are just beginning to dig out from the mess that has accumulated in our lives.

And the sad thing is, we love this blog. It’s something we’ve been dreaming about doing together for years, but somehow it was easy to put on the shelf.… Read the rest

A Very Ninjago Birthday

A Very Ninjago Birthday

For the first few years having kids, I was able to pick their birthday party themes. Dr. Seuss, pirates, race cars. Subtly, I could sway them to pick a theme I liked or one that I had lots of good ideas.This year, my middle child (the stubborn one) turned four and everything changed. Six months ago he announced that he wanted a “Ninjago” birthday party and I was fairly certain that I could change his mind.

As his birthday approached, he was still resolute.… Read the rest

Four Years Later – a flashback blog

Four Years Later – a flashback blog

Four years ago I wrote a blog post about having our second child while living in Puebla, Mexico. That blog no longer exists and since we just celebrated his 4th birthday, I thought it would be fun to share it here as a flashback.


He’s here! Yes, in case you haven’t heard, Pax Elias Staton arrived on March 11 at 10:20am.Read the rest

Let me tell you about my weakness

Let me tell you about my weakness

We told you from the beginning that this blog was about real life and sadly life isn’t always about flowers and roses.  In fact sometimes it feels and looks more like weeds and dirt.

We all have our weak points and mine (one of mine)  just happens to be yard work and more specifically: weeds.

Most of the year I can hide this problem, but then Springtime rolls around (yes, we live where it’s already in the 70s – sorry to all of you stuck in the snow) and this issue becomes very visible.  In all honesty, I always tackle my front yard first because I don’t want to pay an HOA fine.… Read the rest

Learning Calligraphy

Learning Calligraphy

I love beautiful typography. As a graphic designer, I love great fonts and often feel like I can’t find the exact font I am looking for. I have nice handwriting, but not anything I’d want to use on a design project, so I mentioned to my husband that as a New Year’s resolution, I’d like to learn calligraphy. I sent him some websites with details on supplies, books and tutorials that I checked out. For Valentine’s Day, (we get to our resolutions a little late around this house. ) he surprised me at brunch with a bag full of all of the supplies I might need to start.… Read the rest

Mixing Play-Doh

Mixing Play-Doh

Have you ever watched a Play-Doh commercial or seen the Play-Doh box front where all the colors are neatly organized?  I’m talking about the perfectly cut circle of fake red tomato paste that was set gently upon a golden brown play-doh crust followed by a play-doh crumble of mozzarella and finished off with a few tiny red circles that look just like pepperonis.

Now my wife and I are very similar in a lot of ways, but when we first introduced our kids to Play-Doh we discovered a BIG difference.  As a person who enjoys organization, perfection, and likes to keep my artistic projects “inside the lines,” my play-doh preference is to keep the colors separate. … Read the rest

Why I Canceled My Wired Magazine Subscription

Why I Canceled My Wired Magazine Subscription

Tyler and I both tend to love nerdy things. We love computers, technology, gadgets and Wired Magazine has always been something we both enjoy. Now, in reality, we rarely find the time to read an entire issue, but usually one of us reads the best bits of it and fills the other in on all of the interesting stuff.

If you’ve never read Wired, it’s a techy-type magazine. Their website tagline is: Business meets Technology. Culture Meets Design. Science Meets Tomorrow.Read the rest