Dreaming . . .

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I have to tell you, I am beyond tired of this cold weather. Although it has not been quite as brutal as last year, I’m ready to throw in the towel. . . . or grab a beach towel and head south. As I sit here shivering in my shearling-lined slippers and clutching my cup of coffee for warmth, I can’t stop dreaming about warm beaches, playing in the sand with the little guy, and sipping something a little more frosty and tropical. Unfortunately, we are able to get away right now, so I guess I’ll just have to settle for throwing another quilt on my lap and snuggle up with Joe to watch Thomas and Friends.

Snuggled in

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The new year brought us frigid temps outside, so we’re doing our best to stay warm and cozy indoors. I hope everyone is doing the same and praying for those who might need shelter from these dangerously freezing temps.

Goodbye to 2014

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This past year has been one of movement, transition, and adjustment. We moved from Columbus, to my parents in Yorkville, and finally to St. Charles.

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Things we rough for Team Colley with all of the changes, but we weathered the storm. Mostly with the help and support of our families. We couldn’t have made it through without you.

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We were sad to leave friends behind (again) in Columbus, but happy to be close to family for the first time in many years.

We are happy that despite the turmoil, everyone is healthy, happy and safe at home. Here’s to a New Year, one full of new joys and adventures . . . But maybe a little less movement.

Lights All Aglow

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Baking cookies, visiting Santa, decorating the tree, finding “Jerry the Elf” each morning . . . .all of these things have been so much more fun with Joe this year. He’s still not 100% sure what its all about, but he seems to be full of enthusiasm and delights in everything having to do with Christmas. I’m still looking forward to taking him to see the lights and decorations one night, taking him to church and singing Christmas carols, and taking him sledding (weather permitting). Oh, and of course, seeing his face on Christmas morning.

Organize!

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Sometimes the littlest thing in life bring you happiness. I am a list maker, a planner, a scheduler of all things. I usually have multiple to-do lists going on -both written and mental- and hell hath no fury like (ahem) someone who’s grocery list has been tampered with. Just ask Shawn.

Most people use their smartphones to keep their schedules and calendars, but I have found that I am much more organized and aware of things when having a physical planner to write things down. Oh, I still use my iCal, but its more of a supplemental tool. The more ways I can keep track of things, the better.

A friend of mine who shares my obsession  fondness for organization mentioned how much she loved her Erin Condren life planner. I’ve never heard of the company before, but after a little research I found that she has an amazing following for her products. Desperate to find a better system than a pile of post-its, note book paper, and note pads, I decided to place an order.

I received my planner in late September (EC had an option to add the remaining months of 2014 to the 2015 calendar!) and I have to say that it was love at first sight. Plenty of room to make my lists, week my monthly and weekly schedules, track my Stella & Dot business, etc. I’ve been using washi tape to help highlight certain dates/appointments and it makes things much easier to track, not to mention way cuter to look at.

I also took my friend’s suggestion and bought these pens. OMG these are the best pens on the planet! They are ERASABLE! No smearing, or teared up paper either. Gel pens and erase!! I’m never buying another pen again. EVER!

What do you use to keep things organized? Do you prefer paper or having it all on your computer or smartphone? I’d love to hear how you handle keeping a handle on things.

 

 

101 Things: 9. Go to the Brookfield Zoo

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This past Sunday Shawn and I took Joseph to the Brookfield Zoo. I have not been there since I was a kid, so it was a bit of a surreal experience. I must admit, it isn’t quite as amazing as the Columbus Zoo, but Columbus was recently voted one of the best zoos in America – plus it has Jack Hannah!

Anyways, back to our Brookfield trip. It was a gorgeous day on Sunday, perfect fall weather. Perfect for walking around outside and checking out the animals, fountains, and carousel. Plus, there was barely anyone there because of the Bears v. Packers fiasco game was going on.

Joe loved the carousel, we went on it once in the beginning and again right before we left. He like checking out the giraffes and walking through the primate exhibit, however I think his favorite was playing on the playground equipment and going to the children’s zoo exhibit.

I was excited to carry on a Torto family tradition by getting him a figure from the Mold-A-Rama machine to bring home. I remember getting them when we were little, Roz has gone with Luke and he has quite a collection at this point, now we can work on Joe’s.

I’m looking forward to taking him there again in the future, plus going to Lincoln Park Zoo sometime as well.

Checking In

I apologize for the recent lack of posting. It has been non-stop around here the past month. Moving, unpacking, and getting used to the new digs. Having my MIL visit and my hubby traveling a ton for work plus dealing with a broken water heater (the day before the movers came!), a broken dryer – going on 4 weeks dealing with the repair people, and a toddler that has been skipping his nap AND not sleeping through the night has left me exhausted.

I’ll be posting Joseph’s monthly post later today. I can’t believe that he’s two and a half already!

Colley Manor: counting down

So close!! The contractor is wrapping up at the house and we’ve scheduled the movers for the 15th! Yes, there were some construction delays and the movers aren’t able to be scheduled as soon as I would like (NOW!) but, I can now see the light of this very long tunnel!

I plan on doing a full reveal on the changes we’ve made once we get settled, I promise. But, here’s a couple more in progress peeks for you until then.

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Colley Manor: Under Construction

I thought I’d share some construction photos from the house. Tons of work going on, way more than these few shots imply. You’d be surprised how difficult it is to photograph everything. Depth perception, light, and angles are hard to discern when there are no walls, holes in the ceiling, etc.

The plumbing, electric, and drywall are done. We are now working on getting the tile and cabinetry installed. Then, things should go pretty fast!

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