Archive | October, 2011


31 Oct

It is the night before Halloween and we are moving in less than three days. Kaitlyn has a fever and Jackson is teething. I had to run into Target 15 minutes before closing to buy more candy since I have eaten a third of the Costco bag we bought earlier this week. I finally packed up the sewing machine and the iron. I am nervous and I feel it churning in my stomach.

Five years. We have lived here, on Hollowglen, for five years.

We moved here less than a month after getting married. We came home from our honeymoon in Mexico, stared at the tower of wedding presents like it was our very future in front of us, and said, “Now what?” So we moved. Newlyweds.

Then we had a baby. Well, not right away. But eventually, on Hollowglen, two became three. And then three became four. On Hollowglen we became a family.

We had birthdays, lots of them. We mourned deaths, and worried about cancers and the health of our loved ones. We watched Kaitlyn learn to crawl, then walk, then talk and run. She took her first steps here. My sister got married. We lost a baby. We brought Jackson home. We made friends – wonderful, amazing, dear friends. We all grew – up, out, inside.

There are fuzzy times and there are times I can recall so clearly. Like working on a puzzle with Ben in the wee hours after this past Christmas, my belly hitting the vertical blinds every time I tried to squeeze past him to find a piece. Jackson arrived three weeks later and I holed up with him in the bedroom, trying to figure out why nursing a second baby was so hard. Or bringing Kaitlyn home on Christmas day almost four years ago, and waking up every few hours to feed her and change her diaper and logging everything down because it seemed vitally important to know when she peed. Fourth of July walks to the bridge to watch the fireworks. The kids playing outside with their flashlights. Watching movies. Sick days. Just a normal family life, with our future in front of us.

So many, many memories.

Not all glamorous. There were the ants (OH! so many ants), the black widows, the mold, the asbestos. I spent a fair amount of time searching for a new place but could never find a good enough reason.

And then Ben was promoted, and transferred, and the days grew longer and longer, and we missed him. How we missed him. And I started to realize the importance of being together, no matter where we gathered.

Home is where we are. Not where we live. And I’m a mom. I can make a home anywhere.

So I will. Wednesday we will move, and I will unpack frantically, and put away the dishes, and our clothes, and their favorite toys, and we’ll slowly rebuild until we feel just as at home there as we do here.

And then we’ll stare at our new back yard, at the open space where our children can run, and play, and dig, and grow, and we’ll say, “Now what?” As if our very future was laid out in front of us.



We’re Moving! In More Ways Than One…

20 Oct

Among the wreckage of our very real, rapidly approaching move to a new home, you’ll see signs of a different sort of move. Stacks of fabric, piles of snaps and clasps and bobbins, sketches and patterns – something tells me these will be among the last to be packed when the movers show up in a little less than two weeks.

It has taken me a long time to take the first steps, but I finally opened my Etsy shop this week. I’ll be adding new items to HollowGlen weekly:

  • Children’s toys – I Spy bags, crayon wallets, preschool backpacks, pretend play
  • Wallets, wristlets, purses and pouches, checkbook covers and business card cases
  • Patterns
  • Great gift ideas for the holidays
  • And more!

My Domesticated Mama blog has moved here, also. That site will be up for a bit longer to make sure the transition is smooth but it won’t be updated after today.

To summarize, we’re moving. A lot!



Motor Works by Discovery Toys

16 Oct

I find it incredibly challenging to shop for kids, especially in the 3- to 5-year age bracket. I like to strike a balance between something that is fun for the kids (that they can get excited about) and something that won’t drive the parents insane. This is why whenever we are invited to a birthday party I find myself standing in front of a row of toys in the store completely unable to make a decision. I often leave empty-handed.

Enter Discovery Toys. I purchased a few several years back when my daughter was a baby, and I am impressed with how well they have stood up to her destructive creative play. No broken pieces, no fading. So when my friend’s son turned 4 this year we bought him Motor Works, a versatile toy for the budding mechanic.

Motor Works by Discovery Toys

Motor Works includes a sturdy toolbox, manual and electric screwdrivers, and the parts to build a motorcycle, plane, and race car. The bright colors are pleasing to kids without being garish, and it only requires two AA batteries (not included). My friend said Motor Works was an instant hit with her son!

I love the idea of parents sitting down with their children to build something. It seems like the longest lasting toys (in terms of years of active use) are the ones that inspire kids to create and build.

My friend Karen is a Discovery Toys consultant. If you’re interested in purchasing Discovery Toys, please visit her website at For a limited time Karen is offering a 10 percent discount to my readers! Be sure to place your order by e-mailing Karen at and mentioning Domesticated Mama. Orders placed through the Discovery Toys website directly will not qualify for the discount.

I did not receive any compensation to write this post. I just think Discovery Toys (and especially Motor Works) are pretty awesome.