pause and love

Oh this week! I love this week. Thanksgiving and my Rhubarb turns three. Three!


Ruby’s favorite question to be asked: Who turns three on Friday? She waits for the sentence to finish with a big, proud grin and then throws her hands overheard and shouts I! Which is fun because I interpret it like Aye! Been spinnin’ on the ol’ planet for three years, me lady.

Our Thanksgiving plans have changed several times in the last few weeks and while we are accustomed to large gatherings of loved ones, this year we have decided to spend our day of thanks with just our little family unit. We’re cooking all day today and then, on Thursday morning, we will load up food, spirits, games, books and drive to a friend’s cabin on a mountaintop, just south of here. I eagerly look forward to the quiet simplicity of a few days away and unplugged. Remote trail runs, animal watching, chilly treks to the outhouse in boots, the most oxygenated, enlivening air, the rich connection that comes from stillness with great company. A good place to meditate on thanks.

We’ll be away for two days and return to fete our girl who wants pink cupcakes and black balloons. Just black? I asked. And red. And green. White too. And orange. Maybe pink and blue. And yellow.

With all the celebrating we have to do, preparations are under way. I’ll share more of gifts for Ruby but here’s a little sneak peak at some of the making for our girl. I have a little work to do on Ruby’s doll and then the hard part — I wait until Friday morning to give it to her.


Inspired by some sweet little trees I saw on pinterest, we got groovy with the hot glue gun this week while secretly listening to holiday music. Andy is not a fan of of the holiday tunes (Indie Holidays on pandora! Come on!) or maybe it’s the frequency with which I listen during December. Anywhichway, at some point he about faints from annoyance at pa rum pum pum pum.

We ventured out back to look for a stick and found lots of sticks which spawned a whole other project. See, this is how my brain works. I am full-steam-ahead on one thing until something shiny catches my eye and shifts my direction. My kids are naturally this way so the three of us together are on a never-ending treasure hunt that is sometimes productive but mostly just fun. At the girls cheering, I grabbed the saw and cut up some sticks. A little glitter and glue and it was an awesome afternoon (can’t say more because the recipients of these lovelies need to be surprised!).

photo by Margot


And then back to the pinecones. We hung the jolly dudes in the picture window.

to make: ponderosa pinecones, pom poms, hot glue gun, monofilament, stick, tacks

This time of year means late nights for me, which I completely adore: me, up when my family sleeps, elving. Stitching on doll hair, making birthday cake, repainting the bathroom I just painted a few months ago (ahem). Last night I assembled a giant paper chain for Ruby’s party and got teary when we hung it this morning. I also welled up when I downloaded some photos of Alice. And again when listening to my friend Pam play and sing True Colors by Cyndi Lauper. Yesterday my daughters embraced and played all day. I heard Margot say, Ruby, you are adorable and I love you. And then Ruby said Yeah, us best sister friends right? And my watery eyes smiled, grateful.


It’s this time of year, so much opportunity for pause and love. So much to celebrate, appreciate. A lot to feel.


Wishing every single one of you and your people pause, love, celebration and appreciation tomorrow and always. Happy Thanksgiving.

With love,

ps In my mamalode column this week, I wrote a love letter to Sleep. Click to read mama digs: Dear Sleep.


24 Responses to pause and love

  1. Trbholt says:

    My eyes did more than water when reading this, so many things…”Who turns three on Friday?”…”This time of year means late nights for me, which I completely adore: me, up when my family sleeps, elving”….”I heard Margot say, Ruby, you are adorable and I love you. And then Ruby said Yeah, us best sister friends right?”…”photos of Alic”…”It’s this time of year, so much opportunity for pause and love. So much to celebrate, appreciate.”
    And to you my beauty…”Wishing every single one of you and those you love pause, love, celebration and appreciation tomorrow and always. Happy Thanksgiving.”
    With love,

  2. Tara says:

    A very Happy Thanksgiving to you too! What lovely memories you littles will have of their childhood! I’m slightly envious of your quaint Thanksgiving plans…we have 6 large gatherings to attend between my husband and my family and while we so enjoy seeing everyone it get’s a bit tiresome and always feels rushed :). My little girl will be 3 soon too. She keeps telling everyone “My be 3 in December, I so big too fast”! I love this age; of course I have been saying that since she was born!

  3. Kris says:

    I adore your pine cones trees! Maybe a project for my little man and I in between cooking tomorrow. And Alice. My heart melts.
    Happy Thanksgiving!!!

  4. Ellie says:

    Happy Holidays to you, too, Nici. Love the pinecones!

  5. LoislaneSF says:

    Love you and your post. That Rhubarb is so big! I feel like I was just holding that little baby the other day. Also – pics of Alice! Gah! Miss you and wish we were there to celebrate all the things.

  6. finny says:

    Loving this post so much and so swollen with gratitude.

    Big loves to you guys!

    And those are some super cute pinecones.

  7. Jen says:

    I think your solo turkey day plans sound fantastic! As much as I love doing the holidays with family, I was just talking to my husband about how I want us to develop our *own* little traditions that just involve us and our son. An excape to a cabin sounds wonderful! I hope you make some great memories, and happy 3rd birthday to your little girl. Where does the time go? ~Jen at

  8. Alice says:

    Thank you so much for the pinecone idea. I plan to make them with my girls. They are so cheerful and we have the perfect window for them! I love your blog. I called my oldest daughter Madeleine over to look at the pictures of the pinecones and she commented on the wonderful photos. I can’t get enough of them. They are beautiful and each one tells a story. Happy Thanksgiving! And Happy third birthday to Ruby!

  9. Mum of six says:

    Love all of it. Love the elving pics and the outside craft and alice and the sister sweetness. Must make those pine cones. Wishing you a very happy, restful thanksgiving. Xx

  10. Sara says:

    Wishing you and yours a wonderful Thanksgiving! And thank you for your beautiful words today.

  11. Shari says:

    Those pinecones made me smile. Happy Thanksgiving!

  12. Lisa says:

    Beautiful – all of it. And happy Thanksgiving to your family. :)

  13. kwqr says:

    Oh sweet Alice… let me count the ways… I so love those pix!
    Wishing miss Ruby the happiest of birthdays. Three is so very grown, but not too much. Safe travels & enjoy your Swiss family Robinson holiday (you lost me at cold + outhouse!)
    Happy thanksgiving!!! Am ever so grateful to have had the chance to meet you this year.

  14. Amanda says:

    the doll! the DOLL! oh how i LOVE that doll!!! so cute and unique! I want to learn to make a doll like that! i can pretty much figure out the body but you got me on the hair! seriously though awesome doll! happy birthday ruby! and happy thanksgiving!

  15. Melina says:

    You know I go crazy over christmas. I lose my mind! I love it.

    buuuut gotta side with andy on the rum pum pum pum thing. oh man i could barely even type it!

    love you sister, happy 3rd day-of-giving-birth day!


  16. Happy Birth Day to Ruby, Happy Labor Day to you sweet mama friend. I still remember our first new-daughter calls and I’m still smitten with her name. Your crafty ways have slayed me — the pinecones rock and the doll is totally insane. Love it.
    And, oh Alice. I want to scratch her belly. Please do that for me and kiss the ladies on the cheek – five times for all of us.

  17. angelika says:

    Oh Alice…how I love you from afar! You look like such a sweet girl.

    And Happy Birthday Ruby!

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