Archives for family

I’m Not That Mom

Like most parents, I have my ups and downs—typically not in equal parts, but overall I think I get the job done well. My kids still smile when they see me.  And some may argue that I do a bit too much for them. But there are just some things that I will not, cannot, and or refuse to do. You’re Thirsty? Again?!?! I remember when Zain was a wee thing and we were out on an excursion when a friend reached into her stroller and pulled out a sippy cup that rattled.  As I looked at her with bewilderment, she

You Just Need to Flip

When I was in college one of my favorite movies was Cutting Edge, which was about a figure skater that had exhausted all of her partner choices because she drove them all away, and the only skater they could find to couple her with was an ex hockey player. You can probably figure out the story line. They hate each other…they fight a lot…and little by little they start to fall for each other. In one of the scenes the lead female talks about how she’s feeling and likening it to two magnets. They were like magnets that were resisting

Step 1 To Having It All

When I was 10 I decided that I was going to be an interior designer when I grew up. I have no idea how I came to that conclusion and/or how I even knew what an interior designer was growing up in my itty town in the middle of nowhere Iowa WAY before HGTV was a thing. So as part of these plans, I set my sights on New York City…as a 10 year old from a town of 1,700. I declared to all of my friends that I was going to live in Brooklyn and adopt a daughter and name

A Frayed Knot

The Durranis are serial road trippers (as most of you probably already know) and as we plot, prepare and pack, everyone has the same response, “How can you be in the car that much? What do you do that whole time? Don’t you want to kill each other?” Our longest trip (of three) this summer included just over 3,500 miles and 64.5 hours of driving time. That doesn’t include all of the family time spent outside of the car those 10 days. That’s just the amount of time we were all four sitting within feet of each other cruising across

Holiday Letter Throwbacks

Sick of hearing your friends pontificate about their “perfect” life in their annual holiday letter? Growing up my parents had friends that sent one every year that went on and on and on about their trips to Aruba, their summer homes, and their honor roll children.  We read it with humor more than jealousy at how ridiculous they were–everyone gets at least one of those right? So years ago I decided to do the opposite.  I write a realistic view of my year (originally as a single and now as a family), which has become something that is anticipated by

Just Jennessa Junior

Recently I posted this photo on Instagram after asking the boys to collect their library books.  While they did in fact do just that, it looks more like library book Jenga and only lasted as a stack for a few minutes.  A day later a friend of mine posted a similar picture of her son’s bookshelf after asking him to put his books away and some were upside down, some were in backwards, etc. and again–he had done what she asked, but not “correctly”.  It was that week that the idea of Just Jennessa Jr. was born!  Our regular monthly challenge videos

Mystery Pot Family Cook Off

For the month of March, my video challenge is to “beat March madness” with weekly family fun nights.  The only requirements–they have to happen at home and be focused “in the round”, not facing a screen.  Easy, right?  Our typical family fun night is home made pizza and a movie.  But kids movies can not hold my husband’s attention, so he starts to wander and I can always find something to busy myself with and next thing you know, we are not family focused at all.  So we’ve set out to try a few new things.  Our first attempt was

2015 Monthly Challenges

If you have followed me at all, you will know that I’m obsessed with my timer.  And with the fact that you can get a lot done in 15 minutes.  In there was born the idea of my monthly challenges for this year.  Take 15 minutes a day to focus on a theme for the month.  At the beginning of each month I post a video with the challenge and then update you on Facebook of my progress.  And I LOVE it when folks share their progress as well.  See below each of the challenges for 2015!  Love one of