Mother Daughter Road Trip to Cincinnati





Over Labor Day weekend, Ali and I took a road trip up to visit our dear friends in Cincinnati. It’s a 4 hour drive so manageable for just the two of us. It was 2 weeks after her potty training day so we stopped more than usual—3x instead of 1. She did great though. Before we left she was feeding her favorite lovie Little Lucy cereal for breakfast. It was so sweet and funny. I could tell it was going to be a good day.


We stopped for lunch at Skyline Chili, a speciality of Cincinnati. Ali wanted to sit in the booth across from me rather than in a high chair. She’s turning into such a little lady!


It was her first experience with cincinnati chili over speghetti and I think it was a bit too spicy for her tastes. She said, “I no like that. I just like cheese.” OK, sweetheart. You can eat oyster crackers and shredded cheddar for lunch.


She had a great time visiting with our friends Jonas (her birthday buddy who just turned 1 in July), Olivia (who is 3 months older than Ali) and Ben (who just turned 4).


Ben didn’t want me to take his picture but he agreed to make silly faces with me.


“Night Night” is Ali’s new favorite game.


We took the kids to a childrens museum on Sunday afternoon. They liked petting Shelly the turtle.


Ali coloring with Aunt Renata.


Shopping at the miniature Kroger.


Celebrating another staying dry and using the potty instance in the restroom. She gets a Skittle when she has stayed dry/clean and successfully uses the bathroom.


In a miniature house, wearing an apple dress, holding an apple. She’s fun!


I know this picture is terribly blurry but 90% of my pictures of the kids over the weekend were blurry. (I forgot my good camera.) Ali and Olivia got along so well. Renata is one of my very best friends and it was really sweet for us to see our daughters become fast friends, too.

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On Labor Day we went to a fair and the kids got to ride this little train. What a cute caboose!

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It’s hard to believe that it’s been a year since our last visit. Before Ali and I left last summer both girls were wanting me to hold them and Renata took this picture.


She thought it would be fun to recreate the picture one year later. These two got a lot heavier! I’m wearing the same jeans in both pictures and I actually packed that purple shirt with me. Had I realized, I would have worn it.



I’m sad that our good friends aren’t in Nashville anymore but glad that we can see them at least once a year. Gosh, that seems like way too long! I’m really thankful that our kids got along so well and we had lots of time to visit as adults over the weekend, too.


Cincinnati Visit – September 2012


Besides checking out the Sign Museum, we also had some time to just chill out and hang out with our friends Sean and Renata and their crew. Their house is so cool! It’s like an MCM showroom. It’s fun to share that interest with them.

We also had a very important little dude that we were anxious to meet. Little Jonas and Ali are birthday buddies! They share July 20 and are one year apart.

Renata and her dad with Jonas. (Her mom was there also but not feeling well, so no pics.)

Ali and Olivia are very close in age and this is the first visit where they’ve really been able to play together. “Play” meaning mostly taking toys from each other…we’re working on sharing.

Ben has a special place in my heart. He was one of the first babies born to any of our close friends, right after this dear family moved away from Nashville. He’s a cool kid. My two favorite Ben quotes from the weekend:

1. Sitting around the table eating breakfast: “I have a lot of babies! Baby Olivia, Baby Jonas, Baby Alianna!” Yes, Ben, you have a lot of responsibility!

2. After his dad asked him if he wanted some coffee. “Noooo! I’m a boy! I’m not a man!”

A few more cuddles with our buddies before we left go to IKEA and then home to Nashville.

Good friends are a blessing from the Lord! We love you guys! Thanks for having us!

American Sign Museum


A few weeks ago while we were up in Cincinnati visiting friends, we went to the American Sign Museum. There were lots of signs and it was very cool, especially for this graphic designer. That’s about all I need to say about it.

Look The Erie Enameling Company from Erie, PA! That’s where we’re from.

Cincinnati Trip – April 2012


It keeps happening. I intend to document an event, a trip, a visit with friends and I come home with a camera full of pictures of my daughter. I don’t know how it happens…

A couple weeks ago we took a weekend trip up to Cincinnati to visit our dear friends Sean and Renata and their kiddos. It was rainy and cold on Saturday so we went to the aquarium.

They don’t allow strollers in the aquarium. I thought that was the dumbest thing until I realized how packed it was in there. It was hard enough just to move around all of the standing people. Our very heavy little girl needed to take a nap anyway, and Daddy’s shoulder is the perfect spot.

I call Precious Ali-gator all the time as nickname for her real name (does that make any sense?) so I thought it was pretty awesome to get a picture of the gator under a Gator Alley sign.

She’s not really anything like an alligator. This guy was massive!

There was a trippy and very relaxing room full of neon lights and various kinds of jelly fish. I could have watched them for hours.

We caught a brief penguin show, too. This sweet family will be welcoming a new baby boy on Precious’ birthday in July!

Precious is a wonderful traveler. Look, all she needs is a shoe to chew on…

Sean and Renata have a beautiful, comfortable mid-century modern home. We love visiting them!

We even worked in a little time for antique store browsing this trip. We didn’t come home with anything but I enjoyed seeing these Curtis Jeré (real and/or imitation) metal wall sculptures.

I might regret that we didn’t buy this to put on our yet-to-exist fireplace.

Weekend Getaway


I hate that my best friend doesn’t live in Nashville anymore but at least it’s only a 4.5 hour drive to Cincinnati. Jason and I got permission to take Precious out of state with us for a short trip up to visit our dear friends last weekend. We got to hang out with these amazing kiddos:

… and their parents, too. 🙂

On Saturday morning we went to the Cincinnati Zoo. It was cold!

Precious slept against me (and kept me warm) in a Moby Wrap through most of the zoo, though she was awake long enough to check out the penguins.

We also saw giraffes, gorillas, monkeys, lions (awake!), a rhino, manatees, and this strange looking tortoise…

Traveling with a 2-month old went pretty smoothly. She’s so easy-going and pleasant.

Phone Photo Friday


What?! Graeter’s—Cincinnati’s best ice cream—at our neighborhood Kroger? I definitely bought some Black Raspberry Chocolate Chip.

Mid-century Modern Treasures from the Nati


As I mentioned last week, over Memorial Day weekend I visited my wonderful friends in Cincinnati. We spent most of our days hopping around from one antique store to another looking for mid-century modern goodies. We were not disappointed!

I fell in love with this Sessions A-frame wood clock the instant I saw it. It has a key to wind it up. How cool is that? It ticks really loudly.

Got this 1970’s Yamaha classical guitar for Jason. He’s still grieving the Manuel Rodriguez classical he sold after college. Maybe this will help a little. It is a cedar top – his favorite.

Corning Ware skillet with blue and yellow flowers

Pyrex blue and white Amish casserole

Anchor Hocking candlestick pattern casserole

And last but certainly not least, this original gouache painting signed by Dick West. The vendor believed it’s an interior designer’s rendering for a client. As a graphic designer who loves mid-century home design, I think this piece is really special.

My Cincinnati Framily


It’s been a while since I’ve used that term: framily. That what I call friends that are so close that they’re like family. Over the long weekend I went up to visit my framily in Cincinnati. This cute little bugger and his mom, who is my best friend from design school (and her husband, who I didn’t take any picture of … sorry Sean.)

Isn’t my “nephew” so cute?

I love him! It’s especially fun making him smile and laugh.

It’s always a wonderful time when I get to spend the weekend with this family.

Added bonus: they’re also in to mid-century modern design and have an awesome home. After every visit we end up bringing all kind of thrift store, vintage store and antique store treasures back home with us. (Look for that post next week!)

New Years MCM finds


We had a wonderful New Years in Cincinnati with our dear friends and fellow MCM enthusiests. We ate some delicious food: lobster, pork ribs and sauerkraut, Cincinnati chili, Cheesecake Factory. Some new—from IKEA and H&M—and “new” mid-century purchases—from Red Polly, SA family store and Stu Nizny‘s house (oh the stories!)

I’m so excited to report that we finally found the perfect vintage MCM cabinet to use for our master bathroom vanity. Wow. After a year of searching it’s going to take a while to sink in! (Pun intended that time.) And it fit in our car!

While we were poking around at the thrift store I pointed out a table that looked mid-century. Out of nowhere an  eccentric silver-haired guy in a hot pink down puffer with a saucer-sized belt buckle and white silver-tipped cowboy boots was giving us his business cards, inviting us back to his house to check out his vintage collection, offering us wholesale prices, and listing off his résumé of famous clientele. We shopped around a little more than then took him up on his offer.

Stu’s house was a museum of mid-century and vintage furniture, housewares, glass art, Jeres, vintage t-shirts, suitcases, light fixtures, art … and he was right: he did have several mid-century modern cabinets that fit the very specific dimensions we needed. Thanks for the great deals, Stu! We’ll definitely be back.

I’ll share more about our other finds soon.

Erie/Cincinnati Trip – Part 1


Since I have a lot of pictures to share from our vacation to visit family and friends last weekend, I thought I’d divide it up into a couple of posts.

Day 1 – drove to Cincinnati, OH to visit friends (not quite half-way to Erie, PA), saw some joker on a motorcycle, drank a grapefruit IZZE (yum!), ooohed over the beautiful fall trees in KY and OH, and awed over cute little 2-month-old Ben.



Day 2 – hung out with Ben and his mama in the morning (Jason was great with him!), saw more gorgeous trees on the drive, drove the rest of the way to Erie, saw snow as soon as we arrived, visited Jason’s Grandma and Aunt Linda’s cute boston terrier named Shakes, had dinner at Quaker Steak and Lube with our good friends Dave and Emily, and later hung out at their home watching funny videos.