Saturday, March 26, 2016

Murray Morning Realness

We made a date with the very talented Rebecca Peters to take some family pics last week.  I knew I wanted the setting to be very laid-back and show our family in our true element - a "lifestyle session" she called it when I told her what I was after.  Just a normal weekend morning together at home - books, breakfast, boys bickering - you know, the three b's that may or may not be every family's reality before noon.  I wanted to have our regular, everyday life documented because contrary to what our other family portraits portray, we're not frolicking around a beautiful park in coordinating clothes most of the time ;)

I had originally planned on getting everyone up early and dressed in something without stains by the time Rebecca was scheduled to arrive at 8am.  I went to bed without a solid plan, but figured I'd find something for us all to wear out of the baskets of clean clothes sitting in my bedroom (waiting to be folded).  

The morning came more quickly than I anticipated and we all rolled out of bed with about 20 minutes to spare.  I looked at my sleepy crew in their mismatched jammies and bed head and said "don't change a thing, we're wearing this."  The boys were thrilled.

It was clear that if I wanted these photos to tell our real story it definitely could not involve perfectly selected outfits before 8am.  The truth is we stay in our pajamas until its inescapably necessary to put on something decent.  Pictures of us sitting around the breakfast table in cute outfits would not be even close to a realistic narrative for my clan.  So in our PJs we stayed.

I quickly brushed my hair and managed a bit of concealer/mascara, and put on a shawl because there's no need for me to be hanging out in my cami with a camera around :) The boys' only to-do was to brush teeth.  It felt a little weird to have our pictures taken by a professional when we all looked pretty scruffy, but I love the way they turned out.  This is who we are and our life is perfectly imperfect just the way it is.

Oh, how I love my people.
Nowhere I'd rather be.

PS. Rebecca has photographed our family multiple times and  And fun and talented and cool.
Check out her website HERE.

Monday, March 21, 2016

Lucky + Loved

My favorite time of year to be a Murray is mid-March.  Lots o'green and Guinness and bagpipes and corned beef and cabbage.  

Our "Irish" celebration kick-off every year is the Brookside Warm Up Parade on Snake Saturday.  After a good run of sunny, warm Snake Saturday's we were due for a cool and rainy one.  Luckily, it wasn't too cold and just a light mist.  A damp, gray day that actually reminded me of the weather during our first trip to Ireland way back in 2006.  So, although the party at our house wasn't able to spill out onto the back deck, the weather felt very authentic :)  And there's nothing more cozy than being inside my warm home on a rainy day with loved ones and a table full of food.

Fletcher helped me put the "PINCH" clothes pins on all of the forks/napkins.
He was clearly super proud of his accomplishment.
And the big boys helped me arrange flowers to look like a rainbow.
 We also glued lucky chocolate coins to shamrocks for our guests to take home.
 Mimi and our littlest leprechaun.  He sat around and did nothing except look cute ;)
At the parade Fletcher said all the noises were "too scare me".  
And Pop Pop thought that was hilarious.
 Waiting patiently to collect some candy!
We take up a lot of space :)
Milo getting some love from Uncle Sean.
If this isn't a Murray face!?!?!  Oh my goodness!  It's all in the eyebrows :)
Fletch and cousin Brandon.  Such handsome boys!
 On St. Patrick's Day I made these chocolate coin filled "poppers" for the boys using toilet paper rolls.
Max was missing in the AM because he got to spend the night with Mimi & Pop Pop.
 We had our traditional Murray breakfast early on St. Patrick's Day morning.
Our first year trying O'Neills Restaurant.
Fletch was so happy to see Max.  He missed his big brother.
Our clan minus the 6 O'Neals in Tennesse!
Max got his popper when we returned home after breakfast.  The little things make them so happy.
 While the boys were napping/resting later that afternoon I got a sitter and snuck out to run a couple errands and then meet Billy in Westport for an hour.  Always good people watching.  Plus it was a gorgeous sunny day.
 And we can't ever conclude St Patrick's Day without a family dance party.
We turn The Elders up loud and do our version of the Irish jig ;)
 Without a doubt, lucky in love.