• Valentine’s Day Weekend Recap: Love Is…

    February 15, 2016

    Good morning and happy Monday, friends!

    How was your Valentine’s Day weekend? Ours was fairly low-key since Q-Man is still recovering from his surgery, but that meant we had lots of quality time together as a family. This, of course, was perfect timing with the sentiment of love and loving for the Valentine’s Day holiday. That said, here’s what love meant to me this weekend!

    Love is…

    … a nice glass of wine at happy hour with my favorite boys. We had dinner at Hingham Beer Works on Friday night.

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    Love is… this sweet boy. Plain and simple. <3

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    Love is… not one, but two straws (aka “a super straw”), to drink your milk.

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    Love is… a tough workout that makes you feel badass once you finish. (I almost beat Mal!)

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    Love is… donuts from the Coffee Shack.

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    Love is… Toasted Almond Coconut iced coffee. I’m so excited and Mal is so… serious. Haha!

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    Love is… Googling bird-related activities in the area because your son loves them so much, only to discover that “Wild Birds Unlimited” has nothing to do with actual living birds, but instead supplies for them. Ha! It’s actually across the street from CrossFit, so I figured it couldn’t hurt to pop in for the chance they had some live birds. No luck. #seedsale

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    Love is… falling asleep with pieces of chocolate frosted donut in your hands. (He’s definitely my kid.)

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    Love is… saving your cookie dough-obsessed husband some of the batter that you used to make chocolate chip cookies for your neighbors as a way to thank them for snow-blowing your driveway when you were at the hospital overnight for your son’s surgery. Seriously, how nice was that?! We got quite a bit of snow, so it was such a nice surprise coming home to a plowed driveway!

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    Love is… a get-well present for your son from your elderly neighbor, who has been married for 60+ years and still refers to his wife as “the bride.” Doesn’t that just melt your heart? So sweet.

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    Love is… saying “all done” (in sign language), but grabbing a 4th (!!!) piece of pizza to go. Quinn is doing such a great job eating, we didn’t even care that he carried a slice of pizza around the house while he ate it.

    IMG_3331 (640x640)Love is… waking up with your toddler at 4:45 AM on Valentine’s Day morning so your can husband sleep. (Mal bought me a gift card to my favorite nail place, so we’re all good.)

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    Love is… waking up Dada with Valentine’s Day cards.

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    Love is… heart-shaped pancakes.

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    Love is… pizza + wine, which is how we celebrated Valentine’s Day!


    Questions of the Day

    Your turn! Finish this sentence: Love is… 

    Local readers: Do you know where I can find fun bird things to do with Quinn? 

    We’re going to visit the New England Wildlife Center at some point. I also checked out the South Shore Science Center and Mass Audubon online, but neither had much for toddlers. I Googled aviaries in the area, but everything I found seemed kind of sketchy. Any other ideas? Quinn lovvveeesss birds!

    P.S. Did you win my 8-year blog birthday giveaway?!? I’m still waiting to hear from two people!!

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    { 55 comments… read them below or add one }

    Karien @ Running the Race February 15, 2016 at 1:52 am

    Such precious moments – love it! Your neighbours are also truly amazing 🙂 .


    Shel@PeachyPalate February 15, 2016 at 4:27 am

    My brother got his little girl (she’s 8) a rainbow rose and a box of chocolates, she was so flabbergasted! Her face lit up…love is… 🙂


    Amy February 15, 2016 at 5:47 am

    My 20 month old loves the turtles at South Shore Science Center. They also have chickens, an owl and a hawk outside.

    When the weather is warmer, take him to the Franklin Park Zoo. They have an area that you walk into and feed the birds while they fly all around you.


    Megan @ Skinny Fitalicious February 15, 2016 at 6:07 am

    Oh what a cute post and yes those are really good neighbors! Glad to hear Q is feeling better!


    Brynn February 15, 2016 at 6:34 am

    Your neighbor’s are so thoughtful! What a sweet look at the weekend. Love is…your husband prepping the coffee at night so it’s ready for you in the morning. Love is…your son and husband making you valentines.


    Julia@yogawinehappiness.com February 15, 2016 at 7:34 am

    Love is… Sharing the nighttime newborn duties so tired mama could get some sleep this weekend!

    I’m so glad Quinn is feeling better!!


    Nikki February 15, 2016 at 7:56 am

    Now that Quinn has regained his appetite, can you do a day of his eats?


    Amber @ Busy, Bold, Blessed February 15, 2016 at 8:13 am

    Glad Quinn is recovering quickly! You have the best neighbors. Pizza is love haha.


    Katie D. February 15, 2016 at 8:33 am

    Love is – Your hubby patiently taking you shopping because none of your maternity clothes fit and you still have 12 weeks to go!!!


    Jen February 15, 2016 at 8:40 am

    Have you googled “nature center?” Ours (we aren’t in MA) has a bird. Or “bird rescue.” they might be willing to let you visit for a small donation!

    Love is hearing “I wuv oo!” from your toddler, all on her own, for the first time. I melt.


    Tina February 15, 2016 at 8:55 am

    Bird rescue is a great idea! Thank you!!


    Jodi February 15, 2016 at 8:40 am

    The Stone Zoo (Stoneham MA) has a good amount of birds. It’s small but my bird/animal loving son LOVES it!


    Lindsay February 15, 2016 at 8:44 am

    In Austin our aquarium has an awesome bird area where you can hang out with them, buy seed and feed them yourself! Not sure if that is typical of aquariums but might be something to look into…


    Tina February 15, 2016 at 8:55 am

    Quinn would LOVE that!


    Melissa @ melissakolbeck.com February 15, 2016 at 9:08 am

    Managing to surprise me with chocolate when I’m NEVER surprised. Fun for him and fun for me!


    Heidi @artistandathlete February 15, 2016 at 9:15 am

    I just bought my niece her own bird feeder and a stuffed bird- Audobon sells realistic stuffed birds that make a sound like the bird. We went with a cardinal, but they had lots to choose from! If she’s still loving birds for her birthday, I’ll get her another one! I thought it would be a cool way to teach her which bird makes which sound. 🙂


    Tina February 15, 2016 at 9:22 am

    That’s an awesome idea!! 🙂


    Caroline February 15, 2016 at 9:15 am

    I worked as an intern for a summer at the New England Wildlife Center and would definitely recommend it! I would also recommend Drumlin Farm in Lincoln. It would be a little bit of a drive from the South Shore, but they have lots of native wildlife exhibits!


    Tina February 15, 2016 at 9:22 am

    Thank you for the suggestion about Drumlin Farm! I grew up out that way and haven’t visited in years. Quinn would love that!!


    kelli February 15, 2016 at 9:28 am

    This book is published by Cornell’s ornithology lab and is accurate and beautifully done. It absolutely is NOT a book for kids in the sense that a toddler will probably destroy the pretty pages, etc, 🙂 however, I bought it for my son when he was really little and he loved it! I didn’t care that the book got well-loved (read: destroyed).



    KaraW February 15, 2016 at 9:31 am

    If you guys ever make your way back out to Vermont, VINS (Vermont Institute of National Science) is AWESOME and they have tons of raptors, wild birds, and lots of kid-friendly exhibits and displays too!


    Tracy SchwartZ February 15, 2016 at 9:47 am

    Love is Date night with myself….seeing a movie and eating sushi!

    In NJ we have a few bird rescues that allow children to visit. There is an educational portion and then visiting time. Not sure If they have it in MA.

    If you ever venture to RI I believe Roger Williams Zoo has animal sanctuary.

    Nice neighbors and glad Q is on the mend!


    Heather@hungryforbalance February 15, 2016 at 10:00 am

    Love is your husband coming to the BODYPUMP class that you teach every Sunday, even though it not ‘his’ kind of workout.
    I’m glad Quinn is doing so much better!


    Tina February 15, 2016 at 10:00 am

    Aww, that’s very sweet of him!!


    Cate February 15, 2016 at 10:15 am

    Love is spending time with my parents and my 2 1/2 year old niece, which is what I did yesterday. Looks like you had a fun weekend and hope you have a great vacation week!


    Anna February 15, 2016 at 10:24 am

    Love is making your husband a sandwich on regular bread when you have celiac (and then washing your hands like 3 times lol) 🙂

    Glad to hear Quinn is doing well!


    Kelli @ Hungry Hobby February 15, 2016 at 10:48 am

    I made my hubby pancakes too! Only mine were not near as cute.. in fact they were kind of burnt, that still counts right?


    Rachel @ Simply Rachel Nicole February 15, 2016 at 12:13 pm

    Love is cuddling your daughter on Valentine’s Day because she isn’t feeling good and needs the extra snuggles. 🙂


    Stephanie February 15, 2016 at 1:34 pm

    My daughter actually had a blast at the mass Audubon society this summer. She was about 18 months old and she had fun running around seeing the animals, riding the hay rides and especially seeing the pigs and birds there. We are looking forward to going back now that she’s a little older.


    Erin @ Erin's Inside Job February 15, 2016 at 2:27 pm

    This Valentine’s we celebrated with a giant heart-shaped deep dish pizza. It was love alright.


    Victoria Wade February 15, 2016 at 2:51 pm

    Love is… waking up with the love of my life <3
    Love is… McDonalds caesar salad haha

    …And pizza + wine.
    Definitely pizza + wine 🙂
    Actually, I kinda want to have pizza now


    Hilary February 15, 2016 at 2:54 pm

    Love is the face and wag of your dogs tail when you walk in the room.


    Kelsey @ Chatterbox Blog February 15, 2016 at 4:25 pm

    What kind neighbors! My neighbors growing up were the same way – a plowed driveway when my dad was away, a plate of muffins run over still hot from the oven! Neighbors are the best 🙂
    Love is a card with a little money tucked into it from mom even though you’re 23 🙂


    Jennifer February 15, 2016 at 4:35 pm

    Love is…watching the joy on your daughters face as she experiences the fun things that come with Valentine’s Day 🙂


    Patti February 15, 2016 at 6:34 pm

    The Wayland Farmers Market is having an bird event at the market this Saturday. It might be a bit of drive for you.


    Tina February 15, 2016 at 6:58 pm

    Thank you for the info! Maybe we’ll make the trek!!


    Melissa February 15, 2016 at 7:11 pm

    The next time that you visit Vermont you could try VINS ( Vermont Institute of Natural Science) in Queechee. They do shows with birds of prey.


    Tina February 15, 2016 at 7:43 pm



    Bethany February 15, 2016 at 7:42 pm

    So sweet! Ya’ll have the best neighbors!


    Tess February 15, 2016 at 7:56 pm

    Love is doing your taxes for the first time as a married couple!! Haha jk, but not gonna lie, I’m so excited today- I’m 35 and this is my first time EVER getting a refund! 🙂 yay love.


    Megan February 15, 2016 at 8:31 pm

    Hey Tina, you might try contacting local wildlife rehabbers and seeing if any of them allow public viewing (not all do, but some might – if birds can’t be rehabbed well enough to be released back to the wild, they are often used for education purposes). Getting a feeder for your yard would be a great way to bring some birds to your windows for Quinn to watch. Also, I love the Merlin Bird ID app because if you see a bird, you can search by your location, its colors, size, what it’s doing etc. to ID it and it’s really accurate – that way you might be able to learn bird species along with Quinn.


    Allison February 15, 2016 at 9:06 pm

    Blue hills has a trail side museum (indoor and outdoor) that has birds. Also Franklin park zoo and the museum of science are worth checking out. My daughter loved visiting the birds at the adoption center at Angel memorial. Now that we no longer in Boston the best I have found is a visit to the pet store and of course hanging up our own feeder! We made pine cone feeders the other day and she loves watching the birds land on them.


    Tina February 15, 2016 at 9:13 pm

    Thank you!


    Lauren @ The Foodie Runner February 15, 2016 at 9:19 pm

    Awwww, I love the story about your elderly neighbors! My grandparents are 92 and almost 90 and have been married for 60+ years as well, and my grandpa still calls my grandma his girlfriend. Literally makes me tear up every time he says it! 🙂


    Beth @ Paces and Places February 16, 2016 at 7:38 am

    To me, love is my husband getting up early to run next to me on a treadmill on a Sunday morning. Giving up sleep is always a sacrifice in my opinion. I’m glad you had such a sweet Valentine’s Day. I love V-Day. It’s so nice to have a day where we celebrate our love and commitment to each other. It may be a cheesy, made-up holiday, but it’s one of my favorites!


    Bobbi February 16, 2016 at 9:30 am

    We did the same!!!!! Minus the cheese:) and I so get it with letting your kid run around with pizza because you are just so happy they are eating!!!


    Taylor February 16, 2016 at 11:30 am

    Precious!!!! Love is my husband waking up before me and bringing me my favorite Starbucks drink in bed!


    Rachel @ Never Enough Novels February 16, 2016 at 12:04 pm

    Love is making a steak dinner together (while being ridiculously excited about our new cast iron pan), then settling in on the couch to watch Sherlock…on the night before Valentine’s Day because we go to bed so early on Sundays haha.


    Maura February 16, 2016 at 5:42 pm

    Growing up in Norwell, I was a frequent flyer at the South Shore Science Center! It’s a little further away but the Franklin Park Zoo is a great place too. The Seacoast Science Center in Portsmouth is fun though it’s more aquatic focused (maybe they have an aquatic birds section haha?)


    Hilary February 16, 2016 at 7:31 pm

    Hi Tina!

    My son (who’s 15 months) has a small collection of the Audubon Plush birds. They are a great size for little ones and each bird sings its own tune.



    Tina February 16, 2016 at 7:45 pm

    Thanks for the link!!


    shelly February 17, 2016 at 8:19 pm

    We have that ikea table too! I can’t get my son (2 yo) to eat pizza. He hates it 🙁 He also makes a super straw and laughs every time.


    Sarah February 22, 2016 at 3:14 pm

    There used to be a bird sanctuary in Rockland. It was a private residence. I just Googled and found that they opened a facility in RI. http://Www.fosterparrots.Com Perhaps they do tours.


    Tina February 22, 2016 at 3:20 pm

    Thank you!!


    Stephanie March 5, 2016 at 11:34 am

    Love is the support received from family and friends through life changing circumstances.


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