Like a Hug and a Pint of Ben & Jerry’s After a Long Day..

..Or like a comforting post at the end of a hard week, I’m partnered with The Real Nani for this week’s Ask Away Friday!

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I actually know Nancy in person. Note: I did not say “in real life” because you are real friends to me and many of you have crossed that bridge to becoming “in person friends” too. Speaking of which, is anyone going to Bloggy Boot Camp in Philly in September? Now, back to Nancy. I met her at my town’s Farmer’s Market just over four years ago when Scarlet was a baby.

I even have a photo from that very day.

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Sadly, Nancy moved out of MA not very long after we met but we got in some good hang time over the next year or so after the Farmer’s Market meet and had a delicious meal together for her farewell party. She has a wonderful way of thinking, speaking, writing and looking at the world. She has three insanely beautiful kids, and lots of intriguing stories to share.

Hooray, hooray, hooray for the all new #AskAwayFriday! Get to know our new hosts, meet our new co-host, and grab our new logo! Be sure to check out our new Facebook page “AskAwayFriday” for a great place to meet up and send out a #BuddyRequest if you need a partner to swap with! And always feel free to contact me here or anywhere if you want to swap with me.

What is #AskAwayFriday? Well…

#AskAwayFriday was created by the amazing Penny from Real Housewife of Caroline County as a place for us to connect with other bloggers by asking them ten questions to really get to know them. The sky is the limit with the questions you ask!

Meeting other bloggers and making new friends is one of the best parts of this online world!


Tamara from Tamara Like Camera,
Tiffany from Mrs. Tee Love Life Laughter,
Christy from Uplifting Families,
Stacey from This Momma’s Ramblings
Amber from Bold Fit Mom

This week we welcome a brand new co-host, for the next two weeks the amazing…Stephanie from So I’ve Been Thinking!


Stephanie is a lovely wife and mother of 3 – a 13 year old a 11 year old twin girl and boy. Let’s just say juggling a teen and 2 preteens has her on my Super Mom list for sure. Stephanie has an amazingly friendly personality and a visit to her blog would definitely be a worthy click. I’ve met her in real life now, twice, and I consider that a very lucky feat.

Grab our brand new button, follow our amazing hosts, hop through the great link ups and make some new friends!


Be sure to check out Nancy’s answers to my questions HERE. And here are my answers to her questions:

1. I saw an article recently (read: I read the headline and jumped to conclusions) about a mom who was backlashing against the idea of creating “magical childhoods.” But I think childhood should be magical sometimes! And it seems that you and Cassidy have created magic for your kids, too. Do you think we, as parents, should strive for magic or is that too much pressure/work?

I too, read that headline and then didn’t read the actual article! ha! I think it’s a little of both. I think childhood IS magical, as long as the right things are aligned – health, happiness, communication, etc. So I don’t think it takes all that much – or that it shouldn’t. It shouldn’t feel like work. Cassidy and I both get a drive when we’re creating magic for Scarlet, and sometimes it’s as simple as pulling jelly beans from “nowhere.” Sometimes it’s as complicated as puppies, TARDIS sheds and building fairy gardens, but that’s not an every day thing. I know people get intimidated by what they see on Pinterest, but they have to know that not everyone does that stuff. We should be doing what plays to our strengths and desires. I don’t believe my kid will wind up resenting that I didn’t swing a creepy elf from our ceiling fans, but she’ll remember finding a vanity/piano in our garden.

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2.I know you come from a blended family and there are a lot of you. I have the same situation! But who belongs to who? I want to know!

I was wondering if anyone would ever ask me! I may have to cull together photos here. So my birth family includes my parents, my older sister and me. My father passed away the same summer (July of 1984) that my (not bio)dad’s first wife passed away. They had three kids together – my two brothers and my little sister. So my mom married my now-dad and we became the Brady Bunch! I gained a dad, two brothers and a sister. They gained two sisters. In this first photo, it goes from left to right: Little brother holding my nephew and his wife – my pregnant sister-law. Then we have my brother-in-law, who is married to my little sister, who is holding Scarlet. Then we have me looking like a flower child, holding Des. Then my mom (blood) and my dad. Then my older brother, followed by my brother-in-law’s mom! Then we have my older sister (blood) and her husband-to-be!

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I added a second photo because it has Cassidy in it. It goes from left to right: little brother, sister-in-law, brother-in-law, little sister, older brother, Cassidy, Me, older sister (blood-related) and future brother-in-law:

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3. I got hooked on “husband-meeting” blogger serials way back when Ree Drummond published hers and I loved yours, too! I always think about writing mine but I’m amazed at how much detail you remembered and I don’t think I could remember that much. Those were heady days. What memory-joggers did you use in the process of writing that story?

I don’t think I ever could have written that story by memory – way too many details. I kept every email we ever had, even when we had broken up for two years and the thought of those emails made me want to die a little. It was the perfect documentation. Most of our relationship started through email, and then eventually we moved to phone and meeting in person, but so much started and continued in those emails. They even documented the buildups towards seeing each other, and the aftermaths. I always think it’s so exhausting how authors have to research so heavily for books, but now I get it. It’s a good kind of research.

I lived it all over again, years later.

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4. Your house seems amazing; like a fairy tale come true. How did you know it was the perfect house for you and Cassidy and the kids?

We were starting to get serious about another bigger house – as serious as a second showing of it. It was big and beautiful but needed a lot of work, had no yard and had no central air. Ultimately, I couldn’t see it happening. We both then noticed our future house in the real estate listings and we were totally intrigued by it. It looked like a ski lodge, after all! We went to see it on a beautiful, dry, sunny September day. We couldn’t contain our interest, I fear. And the woods.. so dreamy. It felt right. I’m not going to say it was easy and that I didn’t then/still do think about luxury dream houses, but man, it feels like home.

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5. Were both of you always obsessed with Dr. Who or did one of you infect the other?

Oh, there was some infection! Cassidy grew up watching it. I had never even heard of it. For years, he tried to explain it to me and I still didn’t get it. Sometimes I still don’t! Ultimately, I fell madly in love with the stories and themes. It’s deep.

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6. Lately, I’ve had a random, super-cheesy lyric stuck in my head, from The Wedding Singer: “I wanna grow old with you/I’ll even let you hold the remote control.” What’s your favorite cheesy lyric?

Well first of all, that’s one of my favorite movies ever!! I don’t know if this is cheesy but in “Take On Me” by A-ha, he says, “You’re all the things I’ve got to remember.” I LOVE that.

7. What are three life skills you want to pass along to Scarlet and Des?

1. Kindness and manners. Really, what is more important than that?
2. During our parent/teacher conference, Cassidy had said that everything else – the milestones, learning to read, do math, etc. – all of it pales in comparison to Scarlet being happy. It’s about learning how to carve out her happiness in this world. And not to let anyone or anything take it away.
3. Positivity, relaxation, effective communication, building confidence and bravery.

Oops, I gave you more than three! I cheated.

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8. What would a granola named after Scarlet have in it? How about Des? (I feel like maybe you already answered this question but I can’t find it anywhere!)

I’ve never been asked this question! I think Scarlet’s granola would have oats, maple syrup (and a whole lot of it), Lucky Charms marshmallows, pretzels sticks, and peanut butter chips. If it were up to her, she’d say cheese poofs, but I’m not sure that would make the cut. Des… Des.. Green peppers? Kale? Whole cake pops? Cheese! Ok, let’s come up with a real one. Des’ granola would have oats, maple syrup, little waffle cookies, (I just made that up), chocolate chips, also Lucky Charms marshmallows, and yogurt covered raisins.

9. I admit, I’m a little unnerved by the fact that I am a mother of a boy! I come from a family of mostly girls (only one baby brother and an older half-brother, out of 7 total siblings). I feel like I don’t understand boys at all but so far, boy babyhood has been easy. What about you?

It’s funny – my mom only gave birth to girls and Cassidy’s parents only produced boys. Honestly, Des is fairly easy. He’s harder than Scarlet was, but always just a little. He is mischievous, though, and will steal chocolate, hit the dog, and dip his hands in dirt and smear it everywhere. I don’t know what differences are attributed to the sex of the child, and what are just the personalities/birth order. I guess it’s just a little bit of everything, right?

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10. How much do you secretly hate people who mispronounce your name? Be honest!

ha! Well I don’t hate the people themselves! Honestly, I don’t mind it because it’s so common that I just respond to it all. If it’s someone’s first time addressing my name, of course they get full rights because they don’t know yet. If I’ve known them for awhile, then I may need to correct them. What really steams me is when people spell my name wrong. I get “Tamera” sometimes and I get annoyed because if you want to know how to spell my name, it’s all over the place!! Just open your eyes.

Anyway, thanks Nancy! I needed my week to end like this. Loved your questions!

Be sure to check out our Facebook page “AskAwayFriday” for a great place to meet up and send out a #BuddyRequest if you need a partner to swap with or to just talk about anything #AskAwayFriday!

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Thanks for sticking around for #LOBS! This weekend’s theme is “Staying Cool When Summer Is Heating Up.” How do you stay cool when the temps heat up? Share stories/recipes/memories/DIY or anything about summer’s heat! My co-hosts:

Michelle from A Dish of Daily Life

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Crystal from Mommifried

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Angela from WriterMom’s Blog

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Kristen from Four Hens and a Rooster

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Amber from “City Girl On Hicks Farm“.

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  1. I was totally hovering my cursor over each person’s face as I followed along with the description of who they were. Now I know! Thanks for my being my first AAF buddy!!

    1. It was a great question! It seemed like a lot of people didn’t know so thank you for that! And thanks for the wonderful AAF. These were truly incredible questions.

  2. These were FANTASTIC questions! I loved them all! I laughed at the granola question because they sound like my kids. I chuckled at the blended family question because I am asked to explain mine all the time! Your pictures are magical and always transport me to exactly where I need to be! BRAVO! Great swap!

    1. Thank you! I think she asked incredible questions. I’m still reeling from them.
      The granola one was great. I’ll have to send them to my granola making friend and maybe she’ll make those flavors come to life! (yeah right)

  3. Two of my in person favorites swapped today! I also love the granola blends for the kids. Malone adores Lucky Charms but only gets to have it when we take our week long vacation on the Cape in the summer!

    1. NJ, that is hilarious about the Lucky Charms because the girls always talk about how Grandma Wendy has her special cereal, which is the Lucky Charms and they can only have it at Grandma’s house…

      1. Same here! Scarlet is only allowed it on her birthday, Des’ birthday or at Nana’s house in the summer or Christmas! It’s so disgusting, honestly, but it makes them so happy.

  4. #9, I admit made me panic a bit at the thought of being a boy mom, because I was always the girly girl myself. I think with my first pregnancy, I truly was shocked to learn it was a girl I was carrying and then by the second, I was secretly hoping since I already had a girl that it would be another girl. However, I will say that now when the girls are whining for the millionth time, I think maybe a boy would have been a bit less dramatic! Seriously, though I love my girls and just happy to be a mom (even in the craziest of moments).

      1. I thought I’d be a girl mom for sure. Des surprised me! Now I wonder what we’d get if we had a third. I love having one of each but like you said, Janine, I’m just crazy happy to be a mom!
        Des seems to whine too, though…

  5. You would have had to tell me you three sisters didn’t share the same blood, because I would not have believed it otherwise!

    I’m so glad your parents found each other and your family included everyone it was supposed to include.

    1. I went out shopping with my little sister once and a woman flagged us down and yelled, “Are y’all twins??” We couldn’t stop laughing. It’s eerie but we really aren’t blood related!
      I’m glad too. It’s a story that seems like it was meant to happen.

  6. People always spell my last name wrong. Even if I spell it for them. This can drive me insane!

    You have an awesome family. I’m an only child. It got boring. But gave me an awesome imagination!

    1. It’s weird that people don’t really listen or take it in. Scarlet. One “T”. I write it everywhere. I always get Scarlett. I can understand it to an extent but when it’s someone writing me an email with my email address having my correct spelling right IN IT! Or writing on my Facebook wall and my name is right there!
      You do have an awesome imagination!!

    1. It’s such a great fit. A clearing in the woods.. but in a city. So we get the best of everything. Go right and it’s a sugar shack in nowheresville. Go left and it’s a trendy brunch with a wait to be seated. All within 3-5 miles!

  7. Loved Nancy’s questions and your answers too! I think the first photo I saw that got me hooked to your blog was a photo of your house in a winter time and I thought really, it was so dreamy and homey and perfect! One of my many favorites photos you have. Blended families are always so interesting to me. My father has a heavily blended family and it’s so nice that they get along well too like real siblings just like you guys do. Loved the life skills you’d like to pass on to your kids!

    1. I think I remember what photo you mean! My house looked so good this past winter with the heavy snow and the lit Christmas tree inside.
      Blended families interest me and it’s also cool to be in a non-blended family right now, and having come from a blended family. It was all I knew then.

  8. Lordy…you and your sisters are like the Brady Bunch girls gone brunette, grown up and ten times more gorgeous! If you knew of of my massive childhood crushes on the Brady girls you will know that’s a huge compliment. I love your home and the pictures you’ve shared of inside. Of course my forever infatuation with Hans Solo! I want that so bad lol 🙂 The best that you shared for me was that we are just real life friends…at least that is how I see you. It gets too convoluted to qualify it any other way and thank you always for that friendship to us, Tamara! 🙂

    1. I’ll take the compliment! Only.. that makes me Jan Brady – forever jealous of her older sister!
      Do you want Han Solo in your dining room? I could probably arrange that for you and Phoenix.
      Yes, it’s in person or blogging, and sometimes both, but you’re ALL very much “real life” to me.

  9. Thank you for introducing us to your big wonderful family!
    I have true house envy. I am so tired of living in an apartment, I just want a house with a huge backyard!

    1. I hope you get your house! I imagine that four kids will outgrow a house fast. I always think that if we have a third, I don’t know where we’d put him or her after the initial newborn period in our bedroom!

    1. I can’t believe it either. Especially considering that he broke my heart. Badly. It was special, though. It was unique and I knew that no matter where I ended up in life, I’d want to remember this crazy story.
      Really couldn’t have predicted where it ended up thus far.

  10. Hi Tamara! I love my little (big) blended family. I think the opportunity it gives us to learn how to accept each other for who we are and not just how we are related is so amazing.

    The take aways you want for your children are so inspiring – i love the one about learning how to carve out your happiness. I think that is something that I didn’t learn fully until I had my children and I too would love to have them learn that earlier in life.

  11. I love your house, it looks amazing and like something Frank and I always imagine and dream about. I understand what you mean about your name – people usually mispronounced my in USA and now they think my last name is my first name because there is a similar version of a female name here. It can get irritating.

    1. That makes me happy – that people like our house! It is a bit of a dream house but is constantly hard to clean up. And the yard is intense!
      I know you had said about your name and now I always make sure I pronounce it right in my head when you’re on my blog or I’m on your blog.

  12. I think that is such a great response to making childhood magical. I agree completely, you do what works for you and your family. Little things can make a childhood magical. My dad and I used to go out to Friendly’s or Sbarro once a week together for dinner and I look back on those memories so fondly…I think that in and of itself is pretty magical! And I have always wondered about your siblings, so I”m glad Nancy asked about them 🙂 Happy Friday!

    1. That is special. My mom took Scarlet to Friendly’s when I was in the hospital and Des was rushed to the NICU. She still remembers it as such a special memory and it was two years ago, which is a lot in kid time.
      I’m so glad Nancy asked because I’m happy to talk about my family!
      Happy Weekend, Bev!

    1. Me too! I had no idea it was so unclear to so many people. I’m used to the people we grew up with who always knew. So glad she asked.

  13. Your step-sister looks like she could be your blood sister. Since all three of you have dark hair.
    My daughter is feistier than my son, but I just think it’s her personality. I think it just depends on the child’s personality, I don’t know if there is an easier gender to raise. Between my kids and my nieces and nephews they all have their moments when they are not easy to be around.

    1. I was telling another commenter the funny story about how I was at the mall with my little sister and someone flagged us down and asked us if we’re twins. We just laughed and laughed. She is a beautiful girl.

  14. Those granola ingredients were cracking me up. Sadly, my almost 17 year old would probably put Lucky Charm marshmallows in his. I loved your answer about the magic in childhood. I don’t think it is my forte though…I feel like I haven’t really done a great job with that. I wonder if its too late with teenagers…

    1. I don’t know that it’s even necessary. I think kids are just magical by nature and you just create your lives as you best see fit. Anyway, as far as I’m concerned if you have a kid who dresses like a hot dog on ski lifts, you did things right!

    1. I don’t know that you needed to. Normalcy is too important. They find their own magic, if need be. I didn’t even read the article to be honest! Now I think I should.

  15. How fun that you got to pair up with Nancy and you know her in person! 🙂 (I like the way you put that vs “real life”).
    I love the pictures of all of your family together. You are a good looking bunch, that’s for sure! I also can’t believe you referenced “Take on Me”! I just listened to that song yesterday! I have it on one of my Spotify lists!! –Lisa

    1. Thanks! It’s because you’re all very real to me!
      So cosmic about A-ha! It has a very good song lyric. We actually studied it in music theory class. Do you know it’s unique musically? And the video is amazing!

  16. Farmers Markets are the best place to find friends. I love both of your blogs and didn’t realize you knew each other in person…awesome! I am an advocate of magical childhoods. Life gets so rocky after the childhood part is over. What’s wrong with making the first few years unforgettable?! Right now magic for us means bonfires, swimming till midnight and eating too much ice cream. Hey, it’s summer!

    1. Do you ever go to the Coventry Market? That is the nuttiest Farmer’s Market I’ve seen on this coast. It’s amazing. My friends work it sometimes so we go.
      I’m definitely also an advocate for magical childhoods, but I guess the definition varies from family to family.
      I like your definition, though! Last night I really wanted peanut butter cup ice cream but we only had vanilla. So I smushed peanut butter and chocolate chips into it. Yum.

      1. We go to the Coventry one all the time. I actually grew up in Coventry. My husband isn’t a fan of the markets so I usually go when he’s fishing. I’ve been living on gelato all week…delicious!

        1. Oh awesome! I’ll have to tell you before we go. If you know Allie (VitaTrain4Life), we’re planning on meeting there too. She promised me I could buy her a cupcake!

  17. Cool fam. photos

    my family had that for awhile too – my mom remarried and we had 6 kids – ME, my two sisters and my step-dad had 3 kids.

    looks like you are all still really close which is nice.

    Hope you have a great weekend 🙂

  18. Wonderful read! I’m always drawn in by your photos (and more than a little jealous!), I love that they’re peaks at your life. I look forward to swapping with you someday and learning even more about you! I hope you and your family have a fantastic weekend 🙂

  19. I was glad to see I had tagged all of your family members correctly. And name spelling – I get it. My mom is Lynne and she hates when the “e” is left off. We (but really just I) picked our kids names deliberately – one possible spelling. They are still misspelled every once in a while, but it’s not nearly as bad as our last name!

    1. You were very smart with your kids’ names! Although people will always find a way to butcher. They always will! It’s so weird.

  20. People spell my real name with a “K” all the time, and I also get a wide variety of variations on my real name! I thought it was funny when I won a prize under my blog name, and the card read “Jenny” instead of “Ginny.” How could I get mad that my pseudonym was spelled wrong? 😉

  21. What a great photo to pair with talking about magical childhoods! I think magical is just another way to describe letting our kids use their imagination, and there’s certainly nothing wrong with that. Thanks for sharing a bit more about your family. Must be a hoot to get together!

    1. I think you’re exactly right. And that actually requires limited effort on our parts, I think, as long as the kids are healthy and happy. They’ll believe. Heck, Scarlet used to believe that the red dot of a laser pointer was a magical fairy named Buddy!

  22. Your family sound like mine, only there is 8 of us. Love my crazy blended family. We have that same Princess play set you have, well with 3 girls we probably have most everything Princess. Hope your weekend is lovely.

  23. It always amazes me how much MORE I learn about you in these posts.

    I love The Wedding Singer too – such an AWESOME movie.

    I love your life skills you want to pass along to your children… lovely.

    Thanks for sharing.

    Wishing you a lovely weekend.

  24. Holy Lightsaber!!Gawd we would love that but Phoenix and I live in a house that’s just too small. Or we would jump all over that! Maybe someday *sigh* THANK YOU, THANK YOU for whatever you had in mind, Tamara! 🙂

    1. Whatever I had in mind.. whatever I ever have in mind.. might be too ridiculous. Like a lifesized Han Solo in Carbonite appearing on your doorstep. Or worse.

  25. You know what? I never gave that a lot of thought – which kids belonged to which parents. I think that’s a testament to how much love is in your family and that it’s clear that everyone simply belongs to everyone. And those granola ideas, I’m gonna file those for sure 🙂

    1. That’s so awesome – that you never thought about it!
      Yes, you may have a real hit with the kids’ granola choices… or not…

  26. What a beautiful blended family. Such a blessing! I think boys are a bit more mischivieous by nature! (At least 2 year old boys :)) Love those granola ideas!! I believe in magical childhoods, they are only a child once, they have their entire lives to deal with adult things!

    1. Yes, Des can be a little you-know-what! I don’t remember that with Scarlet. Age three was challenging with her, though. Lots of testing and yelling.

  27. I loved the family pictures and the break-down of who’s who and the exact relationship!!! I figured that your older sister was related by blood because y’all look so much alike.
    I guess we all adapt to the kids we have but I never pictured myself as a mom to girls – boys suit me!!!

  28. I always look forward to Ask Away Friday and reading your answers! Reading about your family is so interesting. I admit I’m a busybody when it comes to familial relationships 🙂

  29. 1. I have never read your wedding series. I’ve read every word since the day I first found you, but I haven’t delved in there. It feels a bit personal, even though it’s out there. It’s not an out-and-out avoidance, it’s just … maybe I just focus on the current. Now I must psychoanalyze this. Talk amongst yourselves for a minute.

    2. Take On Me could kind of be the ode to my love life in all my glorious history. Love that song. (And as a kid, thought the girl in that video was kinda dreamy).

    3. Des rocks. From opportune naps to cake-pop dominance, he’s the kind of little boy I would have wanted if I hadn’t scored the girl hat trick.

    1. Well let me know what your psychoanalysis tells you, ok?
      “Take On Me” is actually one of my favorite songs ever, so I felt strange putting it as cheesy. It’s not. I studied it in Music Theory class and my teacher and I dissected it. And that’s just the melody. The lyrics get me. The video is magnificent. The song is phenomenal. In fact, I don’t even think it’s cheesy. I just wanted to mention it, you know?

      He’s a cool little boy.

  30. Love your house. The green that surrounds it is so lush. We live in the desert so it is rare that we can see that kind of greenery. Thanks for the intro to your family. What a fun pic!

    1. It is a very green part of the earth. I even remember thinking that when I lived in NJ and San Francisco – that western Mass was GREEN in the spring/summer.

  31. I always love the photos of your house, it looks so peaceful and like someplace I would love to be. Isn’t it weird how a house “feels” right or wrong? Ours was the same…I tried like heck to get a different one with a pool, I wanted it ignoring the uneasiness…but met obstacle after obstacle. This one…piece of cake. And felt 100% right from the driveway.

  32. Oh I love “meeting” your family! I always wanted to be a part of a big family but it was just my brother and I which was fine since we get along! Love all the space you have outside of your home!

    1. I wanted to give Scarlet at least one sibling. I think two is a good fit! Cassidy was an old child and I was eventually one of five so we needed a compromise.

  33. I absolutely loved your response to the magic question. I read the article awhile back and you articulated my feelings on it better than I ever could have! It’s already so magical that it shouldn’t take much effort. I can only imagine the cringe worthy feelings that would surface if I dove into my emails to remember the beginnings of my relationship with my husband. Oh gosh…but I think I might take a peek because I’m sure I’d unleash a lot of butterflies too. My favorite question was the family mapping. Too fun!

    1. Do you still have those emails???? I wonder if one day you’ll read them again. They’e like my diary entries.
      I want to hear a snippet! Just kidding. That’s totally your business!

  34. Did I leave a comment? There are too many to try to track here… I looked and didn’t see it!! I SWEAR I read this when it came out!!! ACK! it was probably the B B Q Pizza I ate… late the other night, whilst thinking of my T. 🙂

    Well, I want you to know that although I am going to have to shift my life a bit for the kids- I will ALWAYS have my late night food and blog reading… so I will be on the look out ALWAYS for your midnight calls, my dear friend!

    I loved this. I hope I already said it before and if I didn’t, please forgive me!!!

    1. Chris, you are too funny. This is your first comment! I think BBQ Pizza is better than writing comments anyway.
      I am so touched by what you said – it would be ok if you weren’t around but I like knowing you are.

  35. I love your answers and the questions are brilliant. I’m so glad she asked you to name all of the blended family because I’ve been meaning to ask for a while and always forget. And for the record, I totally believe in childhood magic.

  36. So love seeing all your pictures. The first one of scarlet says so much. The wonder in her face. And your house would be my dream house. Love the property.

  37. Nice job explaining our family Tamara. We do have a very unique situation in the way our family came together. Thankfully we all get along and love each other very much. The pictures you posted are special because it has been rare that we would all be together in one place. (Largely my fault for having lived in vegas the last 13 years). Nice job, love you sis!

    1. That’s why I chose recent photos! They had you. What a treat for us this last year or so has been.
      Love you! (you’re going to get tea and I’m on my blog in the meantime)

  38. I remember that day of the strawberries at your market like it was yesterday. We sat and many of your friends gathered. I took that dreamy photo of you and we fed strawberries to Scarlet. Ah, June! What a fun blog!

  39. Thanks for explaining who everyone is in the family pics. Such a big, beautiful family! I love what Cassidy said about Scarlet’s happiness. That’s really what it’s all about. If you have happiness, you have everything.

  40. Loved these questions she gave you! I’m also in love with your hair and your house. Neither of them look real. Too beautiful! And I loved your response about boys. I always love to hear what moms of both genders have to say about the differences they notice!

    1. ha! Well the house is totally real. My hair is too but it looks a lot better when it’s not summer. I don’t have extensions because I don’t like to fake what I can grow but I’ve had people accuse me of it. I’m like, “pull this!”

  41. Your home… Just beautiful! It looked beautiful with snow around it, it looks more beautiful with all the green! Many people mispronounce my name too (and misspell!) that I get tired of correcting them LOL

    1. That’s like Rabia (do you know her?). She has to tell people how it sounds. And my entire blog name.. is based on it. And people still butcher it!

  42. It’s cool to hear the story of your family- I’ve wondered and don’t know why I didn’t make that one of my questions for you. Ha. That shot of Scarlet in the mirror is magical! She looks a lot like Cassidy there, no? You’re right, childhood can be magical by nature, no extra effort needed, but I love what you guys do as a family, surprises and costumes and all.

    1. I seriously don’t know why I haven’t been more clear about my family! So many people wondered.

      She does look like Cassidy there! You’re right. I keep looking back at it.

  43. What a wonderful swap! I love each of their granola’s, I would buy them! LOL! Oh I love farmer’s markets, sadly I have not been able to make it to ours yet this year. I definitely think that kids should have a bit of magic in their childhood’s, with a bit of reality added to the mix. I had a huge imagination as a child.Your house is so beautiful and a wonderful setting for the magic to take place. I love the song “Take On Me”, I even have it on m iPod and still have the original cassette! LOL! Have a great week, Tamara!

    1. We have a good one here on Tuesdays and I missed it today even though I had a sitter and some time to myself! Boo.
      The original cassette for “Take On Me”! So awesome.

  44. I also have a blended family, but we didn’t come together until most of us were in our 20s — except for the “baby” step brother who was only 10. It’s complicated. It’s hard at times. But we make the effort — and it is a cool blessing to gain 4 brothers and a sister in your 20’s: and finally become an “aunt” because you were an only child!

    Cheesiest lyric — although I do love that A-HA also. And you know I am running off to watch that video when I am down here.
    My go to one is from Genesis “Follow You, Follow Me”
    The night is long but you are there
    Close at hand I’m better for the smile you give
    And while I live
    I will follow you will you follow me

    Darn. Now I got 2 songs stuck in my head. 🙂

    1. They’re two good songs, at least! Today I ran into a man humming, “We’re Not Gonna Take It” (NOT the Who version) and it was in my head for days.

  45. Ahhh!! Funny about raising boys. I don’t know any different outside of what people have shared. In some ways, by gender they say how easier it is to raise each. So far, concerning that, JR probably fits the mold, but you’re right there are other personality things that go in there, too. Such wonderful family pictures. I had no idea you only have 2 sisters by blood. I loved learning who is who though. That was a great question!

  46. I think childhood should be filled with magical pretend opportunities. It allows them to be creative and learn that they can be anything they want to be by pretending. There is nothing wrong with it as long as they know that they are only pretending. 😉

  47. I was an infected Whovian too. Although it was fun to watch the newer series at the same time as David – because he had resisted it for so long thinking that it couldn’t possibly be as good as the Doctor Who from his childhood. Our oldest seems interested in watching it too – so maybe one day we will be a house full of Whovians. 🙂

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