Echo. Echo.

I trekked a trail up the incline of a Missoulan mountain two weeks ago with a fourteen pound baby strapped to my chest and a backpack, likewise weighted, tightly secured to my back. A week later, I did it again, this time around the 2-mile stretch of boardwalk at Corkscrew Swamp with my mom. The routine is the same. I slip Nella into the comfortable nook where she settles below my breastbone, securely strapped in the carrier, and then I hoist my heavy backpack over my right shoulder and blindly stretch to find the other strap until it’s all adjusted and I begin my walk with a victorious sigh.

“You’re gonna wreck your back,” my mom said.
“I’m fine. I’m a mom. Moms have strong backs,” I sassed.

Turns out I don’t know what I’m talking about and my mom does. Which is often the case.

My back is jacked. Pretty bad. Three days now. And it’s kinda funny because I’m in this constant state of contortion where I’ll bend and hunch and walk all cock-eyed just to keep it from slipping into *that place* where the nerve jolts and I gasp and reach to grab the first thing I can get my hands on to keep from falling. And then there’s the crazy things we do to make it feel better like downward dog in the living room or locust in the kitchen or sometimes hanging from Austyn’s chin-up bar in his room which just makes the boys laugh.

So, my sister says you gotta run it out. And I haven’t run in forever. But I lace my dusty shoes on anyway because I’ll do anything to fix this blasted back.

Tonight I run, a little bit crooked, a lot a bit hesitant, but at least I’m running. And I listen to my old running songs while my feet hit the pavement. Like Let it Rock. David Guetta. All the Euro techno stuff my friend Katie sends me that I secretly love. And I remember why I used to run.

It’s one of those things. Like church is to some people. Or getting tickets to the symphony. Or watching a sunset. Or drinking wine. It’s one of those things that opens up my senses, creates a zone, pulls me out into this bird’s eye view where, with every whoosh-whoosh of my breath, every thump-thump of the soles of my shoes to the pavement, every beat of my throbbing pulse…I’m in deep thought. About life. All the crap. All the good stuff. All the dreams and how to get there. And running–burning through that painful place where your sides ache and your breath is deep and your legs are screaming and yet you still pace through the strides–it’s a brilliant microcosm of the greater picture. If you can run? You can do anything.

It’s magnificent, really. That I-can-do-anything feeling that comes and stays and propels you to clean your house, to play with your kids, to pull plastic pumpkins out of attic boxes and smile as you dust them off thinking of just how fantastic you are going to make October for your family.

We made paper-chains. Fall-colored paper-chains. And we tacked them to the walls where they droop all festive-like and Brett has to stoop to walk under them. But they are wonderful.


We ate apples on a blanket under the big tree in the side yard that shades just right at high noon.




…and reveled in the adventure of doing absolutely nothing which, might I add, might be one of the greatest adventures of all time.



Yesterday, I let the bad back excuse take center stage. We stayed in our pajamas. We watched movies. We ate trail mix and crackers and cheese and nothing organic or good-for-you. And oh, it was beautiful.

Um, didn’t know until recently that Down syndrome comes with this insane flexibility. Can I just say it is the coolest, cutest thing ever? Hello, little acrobat. Someone’s gonna kick Mary Lou Retton’s ass.


And tonight, while running, I saw it all so clearly. Our messy, crazy, intricate life with all its bumps and bruises. It is good.



These past few months have been crazy. Since Nella has arrived, so much has happened. Grief and learning to deal and digging into parts of me that needed to be discovered. And the blog took off and so much good has come from it. There’s an amazing community of people here, of all walks of life. And we embrace it. But yes, it’s eye-opening and as a mama who’s always loved to write, there’ve been times I’ve had to swallow and ask myself what’s happening. I do think about it all…what I’m willing to expose, what I’m not. What’s good, what’s too much. And tonight, I have rediscovered my voice. Uninhibited. Remembering that I’m doing what I’ve always done and I will continue to do it. I will continue to do it.



“We have to look at our own inertia, insecurities, self-hate, fear that, in truth, we have nothing valuable to say. When your writing blooms out of the back of this garbage compost, it is very stable. You are not running from anything. You can have a sense of artistic security. If you are not afraid of the voices inside you, you will not fear the critics outside you.” ~Natalie Goldberg



I am excited–in that I-can-do-anything, shoes-hitting-the-pavement and breath-fast-and-heavy kind of way. It is amazing how much the human soul can be fueled, inspired, ignited by other human souls and, in turn, reignite the passion, the drive. Like superheros.

And all good superheros need a nice cape. Which brings me to our new sponsor. We totally dig Pip & Bean. We have four of their superhero capes, and we wear them in the house, out of the house, for breakfast, for naps, for running barefoot in the driveway when the sun sets.


Lainey even fanaggled Brett into wearing one.


I’m thinking superhero-themed birthday party. I’m thinking a saved rainy day. I’m thinking how cool I’ll feel whipping these out the next time Lainey’s friends are over for a play-date. I’m thinking I want my own. What will it say? Hmmmmm.



Check ’em out!

Thank you, every one of you…for your shared passion for life and all its paths. I picture you all in capes.



I would hurl words into this darkness and wait for an echo, and if an echo sounded, no matter how faintly, I would send other words to tell, to march, to fight, to create a sense of hunger for life that gnaws in us all. ~Richard Wright, American Hunger, 1977

Thank you for the beautiful echo.

Downward Dog calls.


Leave a Comment
  1. Beautiful words.
    Nella is progressing so much. She is adorable with her specs. And Lainey is ever the doing big sister.
    I love your blog. It makes me see things differently.

  2. Those capes are fantastic, your words are fantastic and Nella’s flexibility is fantastic!!

  3. The real thank you should go to you kelle! For allowing us to be voyeurs in your life and helping us to be inspired for own own. Your words and pictures touch people in ways you will never know!

    Ps. there is nothing worse than a bad back, except for maybe a toothache and how cute is that one pic of the girls cuddling?!

    THANK YOU for everything!

  4. I second the thank you…thank you for letting us in and letting us learn more about ourselves by listening to your words! Much love your way!

  5. Thumbing through a magazine today I saw the funniest little sign that I think I might buy (being the Mom of 14 and 8 year old daughters). It said “By the time a woman realizes her mother was right, She has a daughter who thinks she is wrong!” How true is that…the infamous Circle of Life (mom and daughter style)!!

  6. Love the echo quote. :)
    The capes are tight.
    I want a glow-in-the-dark one.

  7. Thank you for being the cheerleader that loudly proclaims life should be lived to the fullest. I come to your blog for a daily dose of get up off my @ss and get something done, live, get out and move. You never fail to deliver that inspiration for me.

    Thank you, Thank you, Thank you for your inspiration.


  8. Kelle,
    Those pics of Lainey with her arm around Nella remind me of my boys, and the way they interact. The protective and loving nature of a big brother or sister (when they are really still little too!)just takes my breath away. Makes me so very proud. Beautiful post as always!

  9. Oh my gosh. Does everyone love you as much as I do? Really, I love you. Your words are beautiful and inspiring and everything I wish I knew how to say. Thank you.


  10. I love your impression on running. I’m an x-ballet dancer turned runner in college. I have the build – long and lean with limbs that shorten each 10th of a mile. But I had to step back this summer thanks to a badly sprained ankle. And it feels soooo good to finally run again. I get your ah-ha moment and I am thrilled that you’re getting back out there. See Kelle run. Run Kelle run!

    But the other day, I realized that getting back into running has more to do with your head than it does your body. The lungs and heart adjust. The muscles find their rhythm. But my head is the one trying to tell me not to give up. But half of my head wanted nothing to do with it. Thankfully the stubborn side said “shut up and just do it.” And so I did. And my tail wagged (after not during) as a result.

    Thanks for sharing your life with unbridled honesty. I am a believer that love and life happens in the cracks of life – not just in the grand gestures; so your words remind me that’s a great way to live. And thanks to all of you other regulars that give inspiration in addition to Kelle’s thoughts. Rosemary – thoughts go out to you. Rik – Thanks for being a great man. Linda – thanks for being the “blog mama.” And KC – I love your quotes – your brimming with wisdom.

    Cheers and good night!

    -Jennifer from Annapolis

  11. chiropractor?

    I swear by mine.

  12. Good luck with downward dog. Love Lainey’s plaid dress. So fallish. So beautiful. Gotta love those jamie days. I always look forward to your new blog posts, most of all. Keep up the good work Mama.


  13. I hope your back feels better soon! This is totally gonna be me in a few more years- I bike or walk my butt to campus every day with a giant backpack with my laptop and basically every textbook I can find every single day….
    Your babies are adorable as usual, but I think we all need to see more Nella “professor” pictures to brighten our days!
    Hope all is well!

  14. I feel like running! Your awesome Kelle :)

  15. Your little Nella is one kissed up baby. I need a soft baby head to kiss on!!

  16. I love that you used the word “fanaggled”!

  17. I like this post, it sounds really clear headed and determined and happy. And yes, continue to do what you’ve always done. Because it has been working.


  18. heres another chiro vote!!! Over the years of training jumping horses, I was closer to my chiro than my own hubby, I think. It will really help.

    Loving Ms. Nella in her all her stretchy awesomeness.

    And what a fabulous big sister that Lainey Bug is :)

  19. You’re an amazing women with a beautiful family. Thank you so much for continuing to share your life with us in such an open way.

    We bought home our first living child from the hospital last week (we lost our little girl at 4 days old almost 12 months ago). I hope I can be a fraction of the mother you so obviously are.

    Maddie x

  20. “Tonight I run, a little bit crooked, a lot a bit hesitant, but at least I’m running” ~Kelle Hampton

    This is my new favorite quote.

  21. Maddie, Congratulations, Mama! Sit back and enjoy the ride. Joy will fill the sorrow. It will.

  22. Wow, Nella is really starting to look like Lainey!

  23. Goosebumps… this post is just what I needed to hear tonight… a reminder of that feeling of running. The rhythm of breath, freedom of mind & knowing every muscle is happily doing what it was made to do.
    Must find those dusty shoes & hit the road asap.
    Thank you Kelle for all that you choose to share. Your words work magic for so many of us. Hope it works both ways.
    Love those capes! Mine is electric blue with silver stars.

  24. Hope your back feels better soon.

    Love the pics…as always

    and loving those capes

  25. You are brave and honest and true and have an absolutely unique and special blog because of it. Love it, love to be reminded to love by your words and pictures. Loving the children is the easy part, it’s the rest of life swirling around that’s hard to love sometimes and you manage to get me there everytime!

  26. I read your blog daily and have recommended it too many friends. This is the first time I have commented though…

    I think the thank you should be to you. Your blog makes me remember to be thankful for what I have and to stop and appreciate the present rather than wishing for things of the future. SO thank you…

  27. Kelle~I’ve read every word of your blog & lately, with all of the changes in your life, I’ve noticed a different voice, still yours..but different. Hesitant, almost. It was sad in a way because I loved the way you wrote with such reckless abandon, no inhibitions. I am so happy that you have rediscovered your voice. Uninhibited. I write only for me. I often wonder how I’d react if I came under the scrutiny this blog has come under. You do it all with such grace. I can only hope this blog remains as it once was. It was always a burst of light in an otherwise dreary day.

  28. I’ll echo some of the others. Do the chiro, get a great massage. You won’t believe what you’ve been missing.

    My 7 yr old squealed when she saw Lainey in that dress! “I have that too MAMA!” She throws some leggings on under it because obviously WV is chillier than FL LOL

    And finally, /sigh ok ok. I’ll run. It’s been on my mind for weeks. My shoes calling me. Your post today was the clincher. I’ll run. I promise!

    Thanks for the inspiration!!

  29. Well said.

    You are truly an inspiration.

    We all got your back. :)

  30. Awesome pictures, inspiring words, ridiculously beautiful girls, and super fun capes! I am so getting some for my boys.
    Thanks again for the inspiring read – you are a talent.
    Have a good week and hope your back feels better!

  31. Maria…Smiling
    I’m back.
    I promise.
    Scrutiny has its place, and I accept it. But this is and always will be my place. Recklass abandon, here I come.
    Thank you for your kind words.

  32. LOVE your blog! You have such inspiring words – I’m not a runner at all, but you make me want to be one! :)

    Can you PLEASE tell me the title of the book Lainey is reading in the pics? I remember reading that as a child and it instantly brought back wonderful memories! I could probably find it if I dug through the atic at my parents house, but I might just order a dust-free copy for my little Noodle!


  33. you write about life so beautifully– i love how you said doing nothing can be such an adventure. i would love to spend a day with you guys!!

  34. Joelene,

    Eloise Wilkin Tresury of Stories, one of our favorites.

    And Baby Dear is the best one in the book.

  35. So, here’s my recipe for a whacked back (seriously I have had many):

    Heating pad, Ibuprofen, Wine (Although I prefer ATIVAN…)and then you just “sit there”. Then Brett massages it a bit and then you just “sit there” again.

    And btw~ I carry Ativan in my purse… bad back or not…mostly not but you know…cause my ass hasn’t ran for a long time.

    Feel better supergirl.

  36. I have to tell you, I was reading your blog when my husband peeked over my shoulder. I was at the picture about halfway through of Lainey on the bed (with a doll) and he said “WHOA! Is that the baby that close to the edge of the bed!?”

    He was totally panicked. It was cute!

  37. I believe you just grabbed ahold of the reins again. Smiling. It was such brilliant advice.

  38. You are so very sweet, Kelle! Hope your back is feeling better soon …

  39. Raw & real = powerful = you

    My goosebumps have yet to subside.

    Thank you for having the balls to put it all out there. I’ll likely botch this saying but it goes something like this: “What we do for ourselves dies with us. What we do for others will live on and on.” That’d be quite the echo you’re creating…

    Oh, and the photos of you leaning down to kiss sweet Nella? Your gorgeous dark locks falling down on your shirt look EXACTLY like a superhero cape. xo

  40. Kelle! What is the book that Lainey is reading? I think I used to have it when I was younger and would love to know the title! Thank you!

  41. Oh the things Moms do. We think (and know) we’re invincible and then something happens. Kinked back, errr, yuck! Sorry! I kinked my left shoulder so bad two weeks ago that I went to the ER and I NEVER complain about anything. Turns out, I had forgotten I’d slept with my arm over the bassinet holding the sleep sack of my 5 month old still, so he wouldn’t roll over, wake up and scream. Opps! Take care of yourself.

  42. This post reminded me of a favorite quote of mine, by Leigh Stanton, founder of Curly Girl Design.
    “I am fairly certain that given a cape and a nice tiara, I could save the world.”
    With talks of a super hero party, this quote (and the image that goes with it) popped into my mind.
    I hope your back continues to get better. Downward Dog is amazing, isn’t it?
    And Lainey’s plaid dress is simply fabulous. And I would love to have Nella’s flexibility… I plan to see her on Team USA someday in the future 😉

  43. You truly inspire me. I find myself finishing almost every post of yours with tears in my eyes. You are an amazing writer, an amazing mom, and an amazing super hero! Thank you for constantly reminding me to look at me babies with more understanding, and to never lose that sense of awe that childhood innocence brings.

  44. “A superhero is noting but an oridary person who believes she cannot fail.” ~Jodi Picoult “Perfect Match”

    “Life altering events fit into a disproptionately small amount of time.” “The Last Summer of You (and Me)~Ann Brashares

    “I want to know you’re going to take what’s infront of you with both hands… and hold it tight!” Nora Roberts ~Carolina Moon

    “You gotta know when to be lazy. Done correctly, it’s an artform that benefits everyone.” ~ Nicholas Sparks ~ The Choice

    I’m glad you’ve decided to keep writing – that you have refound your voice! I would miss reading your inspiring words and seeing the world through your lens! You have great talent in all that you do and it would be ashame to keep it to yourself!

    And one final parting quote:
    “The funny thing about mazes: what’s baffling on the ground begins to make sense when you can begin to rise above it.”
    ~Wally Lamb

  45. We are human and its hard not to take what others say to heart. Sometimes we have to take a step back and see what we really want. Glad that you know what you really want to do with this blog! You are stronger for it and we are happier to hear from you!

  46. I love love love your blog! I love your family and would love to learn more about them!

  47. I’m glad you’re going to keep writing, and I think the quote you shared by Natalie Goldberg is so true! What book is that from?

  48. Two word: massage. chiropractor. (and if anything, it’s a REALLY good excuse/reason to have that hour of oily bliss.)

    So funny thing, I was listening to the playlist on another blog and wanted to hear a song but was done reading. Clicked over to your blog with that playlist still playing, and when you started talking about superheros, the song “Amazing” by Janelle came on with the chorus. So cool how it matched up. (It wasn’t “Amazing” that I stayed for, just what came on after. lol) 😀

  49. Your blog is always filled with so much love, and that is my favorite thing about it. Love for yourself, love for life, and love for others. You rock!

  50. OOOh! our daughters have the same little checkered yellow, orange, cotton shirt. LOVE IT. Lainey looks great in it!!

  51. Down diggity Dog- I hope it works…there is not a lot worse than having your back out!! Maybe Nella can show you a few stretches to work it out too… :) My little guy, Elijah, never ceases to entertain me with his flexibility antics (and I am a former dancer and ballet teacher who has always had to work hard for my flexibility!)

    It seems like you’ve really had some time to just get back to “Kelle” and I love it! OXOX

  52. I have recently discovered running as a way to lose my baby weight but more so to prove to myself that I could do it. I could push myself to limits I have never reached before. It is amazing what you can do when you put your mind to it. It is so true, running somehow clears your mind and helps put things in perspective. BTW, I love you blog and seeing your girls grow… You truly are an inspiration to other mothers. I have to say that you definitely challenge me to be a better mother everday…

  53. PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE continue! I know I speak for thousands of others when I say that your words, your photos, your girls, bring me sunshine on the darkest days!

    My sister was having a particularly bad day last week, crying all day long. I sent her the link to your blog, introduced her to “The Professor” and she reported back that Nella’s “intellectual” face and Lainey’s adorable outfits put a smile on her face. I think that’s a mission accomplished.

  54. I sit here at almost midnight ( my time) with my two year old refusing to go to bed, sitting in my arms, reading your post, saying ” baby” at all the pictures… so sweet..

    I noticed you guys share the same initials as my husband and I do.. B&K
    I am the B, btw.. Becky and Keith..
    ( and Austin)
    much love.. from up in the hills of New England..

  55. I wish I was flexible that way. Amazing.
    We had a pj day on Monday and the kids and I loved it. When my husband came home from work, the kids shouted “Daddy! Mommy let us be lazy and never get dressed and we ate BAD food!” – because we ate junk and enjoyed it :)
    Sometimes you just need to cut loose that way.

  56. Your cape will have a “K” on it for KAN DO!

    xo, Bug & Ruby’s Gram

  57. I just love how you put your thoughts into these beautiful words. You are a superhero who definitely needs her own cape! Hope your back gets better soon and how exciting that you started running again (it’s one of my loves)

  58. Oh I love your picture wall! Are those all canvases? Let me just tell you what phrase got me through this morning… “I can Rally!” I was up late last night, and when I finally went to bed… my 5 month old decided she wanted to get up and party! And when morning hit… I thought I was going to die… but I thought… “I can rally!” Love it!!!

  59. oh the fun you will have with Nella’s flexibility.

    Like when she carries on two conversations with her foot phones….at the same time. Or in church she will sit straight up, and both her feet will be behind her head.

    Karate class? fugetaboutit. She’ll be the only one doing the splits. EVERYONE will be jealous.

    I love the picture with sprite holding up Nella – so real, so loving.


  60. You actually pondered the fact that you would stop writing and sharing your heart?? That would be reckless abandonment! Kelle, I thank you so much for sharing your life, your words, your experience, your wisdom and enlightment! You are awesome. and I love you. I do, I really really do. :)

  61. Hope your back feels better!

  62. I think I’ve been reading too much of your blog before bedtime because I had a pretty vivid dream the other night that we were friends and had a sweet time just hanging out with your beautiful girls. Thanks so much for sharing your life and your great photography on here. I love your journey, it’s inspiring to me to live life simply and beautifully.


  63. I absolutely LOVE those pics of you kissing Nella. So stunning.

  64. Kelle, you’re like our Wonder Woman. Gold braceletts and all.

  65. Kelle, you have the most beautiful photos
    and stories! I read them with all my heart.
    God bless you and your family!

  66. Kelle, you have the most beautiful photos
    and stories! I read them with all my heart.
    God bless you and your family!

  67. Oh how your words spoke to me tonight in so many ways! I am a runner and my runs are my therapy sessions! And I am so happy to see you sporting your super hero cape with your unhibited voice again! It will move mountains! It has already moved millions of hearts!

    Hugs to you and gratitude for your inspiration, all the way from Texas!


    PS– those two pics of you kissing Nella while she napped? priceless!

  68. this is totally one of my favorite posts, you HAVE rediscovered your voice and its beautiful, and raw, and simply sweet.

    now I need to start running.

    you dont know me but i love you! i picked up this months parents mag and told my husband i was excited because my friend Kelle was in it, yes i am THAT crazy blog reader 😉

  69. Amazing that I read that today. I just went for a run, my first run in a long time because I’m afraid of running and afraid I’m not good at it. I do so many things but running? Scary. Well, I did it. Hit the pavement in Greenlake, seattle, with all the other hordes of ‘real’ runners. And I came to the conclusion: if I can run, I can do anything. And then I go to a cafe, sit down to write on my blog and read yours, and there it is. If you can run you can do anything. Amazing as well that the title of this post is ‘echo, echo’. I’m having a hard time with my blog, http://www.thewildercoast , wondering how much to share, how much to say. But I am gaining confidence in my words and my honesty. It will help someone else. It will help me.

    Thanks for your words and your honesty.


  70. Oh how glad am i that you will continue to write! and write for kelle. You inspire me. You inspire me to be better mother. a better wife. a better friend. and over all a better human. from you i am learning to let go of my insecurities. i am learning to accept not judge. i am learning to rally! lets just have fun! “People rarely succeed unless they have fun in what they are doing.”

    Thanks Kelle!

  71. You continue to write…I will continue to read (faithfully). Cause I can’t get enough of you. You help me see life differently and, I love you for that! Wish we were in the same playgroup…my three she littles would love yours! (Nella and Amaya are only days apart.) Hugs from Austin.

  72. I tell everyone I know about your blog. Your words are inspiring. you have such a gift of expression. Expressing words and feelings that we moms have. Your girls are beautiful! I was having coffee the other day with some girlfriends and one of the girls who works at the Coffee Bean, Michelle, has down syndrome. She is the sweetest girl, and all of the regulars were just so happy to see her and be in her prescence. I know your Nella will bring all of her joy to so many. She already has to all of us who get to share in your life! Thank you for your words, and pictures,and honesty. You’re a beautiful person!

  73. I must have missed something as I never realized you thought about quitting the blog.

    I’m glad you chose not to quit.

    I, too, had noticed a change in your writing style but I thought it was simply a byproduct of 2 young children and growing outward a bit. Or maybe inward…I dunno. But something had a subtle shift to it. I’m not sure the shift was a bad one either. We all change and grow and evolve don’t we? Especially when we have such life-altering events that rock our world.

    but anyway, I’m glad you will keep writing and posting. I look forward to seeing that you have a new post up.

    BCubed1353 I am so stealing that last quote for my sig line. Where DO you find these????

  74. I use to enjoy reading your blog while I was pregnant. I would sit there rubbing my belly imagining all the fun me and that little wonder in my belly would have. But now that I have my little guy in my arms while I read, I can honestly say I’m falling in love with your blog. After every paragraph I look down at him and I can’t wait to go on picnics or to the beach. You inspire me to go out and enjoy all these moments even the smallest, tiniest ones. And I thank you for that.

  75. LOVE LOVE LOVE….love your girls! And looking at little Nella Bean’s ears…they are just like my Joaquin’s! LOVE their little ears! and their smiles, and their spirits…and I could go on and on and on!

  76. I love this post. And I absolutely love the Natalie Goldberg quote. I think that first line pretty much sums me up. I read a book by Delilah (you know the DJ, the Queen of Love Songs) once and she said one of the biggest things she’s learned from her listeners is that everyone wants to be heard. We love to hear you.

  77. Sweetest pictures of you kissing Nella. In the second one, it looks like you are kissing her in what we call the “sweet spot”… our favorite spot on Lexi. It is flat between the eyes (due to the lack of a nose bridge) on most kiddos with Ds and just perfect for kisses! Every night before bed, she demands Eskimo kisses and sweet spot kisses! A favorite part of my day!

    I hear you on the flexibility. She didn’t earn the name Flexi Lexi for nothing! Ha! Phil mentioned foot phones. Yep, we do that daily at our house!

    Jill B (Overland Park, KS)

  78. you’re such a beautiful and inspiring mother.

  79. Well done for grasping inhibition by the hand! Your voice is one of the best – which is a testament to the way you write and what you have to say. I never ever miss a post…not ever now. Lou x

  80. this video is so cute. its about a 7 year old boy whose 4 year old sister has down syndrome and he’s singing just the way you are by bruno mars to his sister.!

  81. this video is so cute. its about a 7 year old boy whose 4 year old sister has down syndrome and he’s singing just the way you are by bruno mars to his sister.!

  82. The blogging world would lose something amazing and unique without your words and pictures. We need you! :)

  83. I’m going to jump on the bandwagon and thank you. For letting us into your life. For inspiring us & showing us how even the bad things can be good. xx

  84. Thank YOU for all the inspiration!

    And thanks to your sister too, I read her blog as well. After seeing your blog pics of her on the beach a few posts ago, yours truly, (who hasn’t worked out in over a year, nor worn or bought a bikini in donkey’s years) decided to GO FOR A RUN. I figured, if she can do it, with all that’s on her plate, I can find the time too. After all, I just have two little dudes (OK, yes also a 17-year old step-son too but since he knows everything that’s no extra work, LOL!) So every morning before work for the past week, I’ve left the dudes with hubs, and gone for a run. Well, more like a JOG. Feels like scrabbling up a waterfall but I hope it will get easier!

  85. I love, love, love your blog and your writing and your pictures and this post. Can you tell I love it?! :)

    I went running tonight (I do it a couple times a week but it needs to be more regular) and I felt this insane peace. This post and a paragraph in a book made me decide to take action regarding something. I’ll blog about it and when I do, I’m going to link back here…so others may be inspired too – whether it be about running or something else. Wish I knew you “in real life”. You are a superhero to me. :)

  86. Why hello Kelle! I have been reading your blog since the birth of Nella, but I have never commented before. Even though I have written the comments in my mind many times over, I always see how many other comments you have and think I’ll just be another one of the hundreds of wonderful comments you get.

    But today I thought what the hey, it’s time!

    You, my gal, are an inspiration. You write so beautifully, and every post is like a breath of fresh air – and this one is no exception.

    There seems to be a common theme out in blog land right now – so many questioning why we blog, and who we’re blogging for, and it seems as if many people desperate to find their true voice again.

    Your voice is unlike any I have ever heard. So comfortable in your own skin, so refreshingly honest, SO SO able to find the beauty in anything and everything. You inspire me to suck more out of the marrow of life with each and every post.

    Awesome, gal, awesome.

  87. just a question… how often does nella have to wear “the professor”? :) thanks

  88. But about DS and flexibility… I used to work at a camp for adults with special needs, and the campers with DS were by far my favorites to work with.

    We always had a talent show, and one woman with DS would brush her hair with her feet. She would hold the hairbrush in her toes and do her hair. It wasn’t exactly a going-out hairdo when she was done, but it was awesome. And every year, that was what she did for her talent.

  89. I must have deleted the beginning of my comment — I love your writing and LOVE your photography. I’m glad you’re staying with us.

  90. Wow, you SOOO caught the freedom embodied in running. I run for all the same reasons and I’ve tried to explain it but never quite captured its’ true essence – but you got it! Must have something to do with all those endorphins. Loving your blog, your photos and your take on life. Thanks for the journey

  91. Hi Kelle,
    I’m sorry to hear that you hurt your back.
    Hope that it gets better soon. x

  92. I sooooo NEEDED this post. I’m a runner that’s taken a “9 yr break” and has become very overweight, but am back to running -my first love. You reminded me why I LOVE running so much… and I needed that. I’m having a really hard time getting it done while being so heavy, but it needs to be done and I know that I can do it.

    My nephew has downs syndrome and he is insanely flexible. He can sit on his rear and prop his head up with his foot while his knee is touching the ground.IT’S CRAZY… but hilarious to watch.

  93. A good thing to remember about the echo is, it is merely what we have said returning to us. It is not a different message. It is the same, perhaps distorted from the journey through the canyon, twisted from the nooks and crannies it traveled, but it is still that same proclamation we sent out. So, our message needs to be sweet, celebratory, pure…because someday, maybe when we ourselves need it, it comes back to us. I hope you hear your “I love life” coming back to you today–from faroff places, proven and tested, with exclamation marks added and underlined. It is the same message, but now resonant and sure. Again I remind you, “The heart stretched out by sorrow, God later fills with joy.” –Mother Teresa (Run to a chiropractor…if the back doesn’t resolve soon, I did and it helped)

  94. I sure hope your back feels better! I love your running analogy. As I’m reading this I’m sweating all over the keyboard after a great run this morning. I enjoy every one of your posts…especially the pictures :)

  95. You put my feelings about running into words perfectly. I am 30 weeks pregnant and I had to stop running last week because it started to hurt my tummy. But for 29 weeks I could totally say that I rocked a 1-2 mile run and that is the most exhilarating feeling!

  96. For what it’s worth, on the back issue–Tiger Balm. And deep tissue massage. A good therapist can isolate the problem in one or two sessions. In the meantime…Tiger Balm. Tiger Balm. Tiger Balm.

  97. i’ve just finished reading every single one of your posts… i stumbled upon it a few weeks ago and have spent every spare minute reading your beau-fi-til words and gazing at your dreamy pictures.

    you are a wonderful mother, wife, sister, daughter, aunt, cousin and friend, and i’m thankful for finding you and your inspirational blog.

    i’m pretty sad though that now i’m up to date on the posts, i have to wait until you post again! im also sad that the likelihood of meeting you and brett and lainey love and nella cordelia and slim and none.

    anyway, thank you so much for inspiring me, all the way in australia. can’t wait to read more x

  98. I can tell. You’re around a corner and there are more up the way but, for now, there’s no looking back to that corner. I could tell when we talked yesterday and I can tell in this post. The security, the knowing what’s best for you and your family.

    I think the cape should read half full.

  99. This is the first time I`m visiting your blog and I have to coment on how nice it is! (I`m from Norway,sorry my English writing is not good)
    Youre pictures are so beutiful! So is your blog title!First I wondered if your little girl had downs,she had special eyes,but special as in reare and nice) I could not reallt tell. Then I read About this blog and I saw what you had written about your thoughts when she was borne. I think your blog is helpful for othe mums that get the same message. She is realy so beautiful! Your blog title reminds me that it`s the little things in the world that really meens some thing. It`s the little things that we will remember when we get old or that we preaciate the most when we get sick.


  100. What a wonderful post. I too love love love running. Your girls are darling as always.

  101. Good morning Kelle. I had no idea you considered stopping, and it would have broken my heart. I’ve gotten so much, been inspired so much and you would be very, VERY missed! I’m just happy I’ve come here later and get to read that your going to continue! I do not expect you to be perfect, or even close to it…I just love the way your express yourself and suck the marrow out of life and show us how its done. Keep the dream alive Kelle!
    Your cape would read “Rocks Out The Small Things” because that is truly heroic!

  102. new request for your facts tab, books you find inspirational or favorites. I need more suggestions.

  103. I am so happy you’ve decided to continue on. Thank you for allowing your readers a glance into your life. love that last quote.. I’m searching to fill my hunger of life

  104. YOU should get a cape… so fun… what are your girls going to be for Halloween this year??? super hero’s or much better? Can’t wait to see.
    I am glad you will continue doing what you do.. You have so many friends and fans.. and I am sure “haters” as I see deleted comments.. but every good journalist has this.. move on… I can hear your ECHO.
    1 Wasabi Mommy

  105. those capes are awesome!!

    i love the pic of nella’s fat hand around the apple! so adorable!! and the pic with her wheeeeee feet in the air, what a rockstar.

  106. Was that “Baby Dear” that Lainey was reading? I had that book as a child and LOVED it and was hoping to find a copy for my little girl. I hope Lainey likes it as much as I did!

  107. First off, I want Lainey’s dress! Does it come in “big girl” sizes? :) Second, I can’t tell you how much I appreciate your willingness to acknowledge the craziness and the crap that life can sometimes bring… It’s not only refreshing, it’s encouraging. Sometimes we need the reminder that life isn’t perfect, but it’s still life. Beautiful, messy, fun, breathtaking life. Thank you for sharing yours.

  108. I’m so sorry to hear about your back – ouch! But, Nella’s blue eyes and Lainey’s adorable personality must make that pain a little more bearable, huh? :) Love the capes.

  109. HI Kelle,
    So glad to hear you are back to running. I am a runner also and was reminded this week how it helps ground me back to the earth, back to my family, and myself. And it is true, if you can run you can do anything!
    Happy to hear you have found your voice again! I have a small blog also and I have found it helps me to completely put it out there, then I can see it for what it is, tear it apart, process it, and move forward….or embrace it even more. You truly inspire others and myself and I’m so happy you are back to inspiring yourself!

    Keep hitting the pavement..your head will thank you !

  110. One more thing, when I began reading this post I was so taken in by your description of running. 20 years ago, I was a runner…9 kids later, I was no where near it. I began running again in August and I wrote a blog post sharing how I am overwhelmed by the feeling of strength I get from running now, I’m empowered by it. So, today when I read about running on your blog I got it in a way I would not have before August! Go Kelle!!!!

  111. Not trying to be super cheesy haha, but I’m reading this post while my daughter is listening to her Tinkerbell soundtrack…the sweet song blaring in the background sings “If you believe in who you are,
    who you were always meant to be.
    If you open up your heart, then you’ll set your spirit free.”
    Well, there you go. :)
    Keep doin’ your thang mama. You bring happiness to so many.

  112. Great post, great words!!! THANK YOU!!!!!!! Hope your back is feeling better soon!

  113. I love the last picture of Lainey and Nella, they are both so beautiful! You are such an inspiration! I am, by nature, a pessimist, although I have always yearned to be an optimist. Reading your blog helps that optimism come out a little more often!

  114. I would say…words can’t explain how thankful I am that your words…your photos…your zest…your brilliance…your strengths…your weaknesses…your creativity…your family…your music….your softness…your loudness…your fears…your braveness…your sadness…your sparkles…your YOU are a part of my life, but I think ALL of the below says it all.

    simply. thank. you. kelle.

    hartelijk dank (thanks from the heart)-Dutch

    “Be who you are and say what you feel because those who mind don’t matter and those who matter don’t mind.”

    ~Dr. Seuss

    Not what we give,
    But what we share,
    For the gift
    without the giver
    Is bare.

    ~James Russell Lowell

    I would thank you from the bottom of my heart, but for you my heart has no bottom.

    ~Author Unknown

    We can only be said to be alive in those moments when our hearts are conscious of our treasures.
    ~Thornton Wilder

    I thank you God for this most amazing day, for the leaping greenly spirits of trees, and for the blue dream of sky and for everything which is natural, which is infinite, which is yes.

    ~ E. E. Cummings

    “Let us be grateful to people who make us happy; they are the charming gardeners who make our souls blossom.”

    ~ Marcel Proust

    Gratitude unlocks the fullness of life. It turns what we have into enough, and more. It turns denial into acceptance, chaos to order, confusion to clarity. It can turn a meal into a feast, a house into a home, a stranger into a friend. Gratitude makes sense of our past, brings peace for today, and creates a vision for tomorrow.

    ~ Melody Beattie

    In everyone’s life, at some time, our inner fire goes out. It is then burst into flame by an encounter with another human being. We should all be thankful for those people who rekindle the inner spirit.

    ~ Albert Schweitzer

  115. Those capes are so SWEET! I think I just found some Christmas presents! Your words really hit home with me today. I’ve been in a funk lately. My blog is my happy place and it’s hard to blog if I’m in a funk. Oh, and thank you so much for your comment on my blog yesterday! It made my night and my husband since he took the pictures (minus the two that he’s in, which I took).

  116. What a beautiful post as always. LOVE the capes, super fun! Your girls are so gorgeous!

  117. Love this post! You are speaking to me! I have recently started running and ran my first 5K a few weeks ago. I felt so good to accomplish that goal. AND I love the capes. Just as I was about to look on the internet for a cape for my son (to replace the Buzz Lightyear pillowcase we used as a cape yesterday) I saw your post. He’s getting one for his birthday! Love you too!

  118. “sometimes, said Pooh ,the smallest things take up the most room in your heart.”
    love the pic of you kissing Nella so tender and sweet.

  119. Your post has reminded me how much I miss running. I’m due to have my first baby any day now and I cannot wait to get out and run again. Thanks for your inspiring words. I just learned of your blog and look forward to more gorgeous pictures of your family and more inspiring words of wisdom about mommyhood and life in general!

    Christine in Austria

  120. I love this post. I am a fellow Mommy and blogger and I must say thank you! Your blog inspires me. I read it and I feel a kinship. I feel like I am having a conversation with an old friend over a cup of warm delicious coffee. By sharing your life so honestly and openly, all Mothers/ women can relate. We’ve all been there. We might not share the same exact experiences but we have all had those days of insecurity, bliss, and days of feeling completely overwhelmed or even like complete failures. But then there are the days when we feel like superheroes and like we can do any and all things. God bless you and your gorgeous family so full of love.
    As for your back, I believed that lie too..that Mommies had strong backs until I ended up in the Praying to Mecca position for about 6 hours back felt like a rubber band pulled too tight. I had to utilize a combination of ice packs, vicodin, flexerill, and stretches to come unpretzel like. Just be careful, these injuries take about 6 weeks to heal and are easier to re pull within that time frame. Each time you re pull it the longer healing time. GO SEE A DOCTOR! The first time it happened, I tried to ignore did it 3 more times within 2 months! NOT fun! Take care. If you have the time, I would LOVE if you could stop by my blog sometime!

  121. I can’t get over Nella’s sweet little fingers and toes. They look sweet and delicious! Your girls are beautiful.

    I hope your back feels better soon!

  122. I just love your blogs!! And todays was so calming and uplifting to read. You are fantastic at all that you do! I so aspire to be as good of a writer as you are. You have such a amazing way of taking everyday life and making it so beautiful. I have said this before but I feel it needs it, thank you for sharing your life with all of us. As you can tell, we all love it.
    I think I am repeating another comment, but when I read your blog I feel like I am talking to an old friend. I love that.
    Nella is just so precious. The one of her “stretching” on the rug is priceless! I also LOVE the picture of Lainey looking over the bed.
    Have a great weekend!

  123. I love this. I love reading about your lives and how much you love your little sprite and that sweet Nella Bean… The pictures say it all!
    By reading you every morning (I have almost read then all and caught up)I have not only learned to appreciate and love all the little things, but I have also learned to love myself and the ones around me even more than I ever thought that I could.
    I am getting married in exactly one month from today… and one of my wishes is that I had started reading you sooner- I would have hired you as a photographer of course with the help of your whole family coming to Altanta as well! I just hope not that the photographer can capture all of the love in that room as you do in ALL of your pictures.

    and PS. I cannot wait to have littles of my own one day. To be a Mama… that is just so special and you have made me realize just how great that can be. Even if it is picnics over piles of laundry! I want to be a mama just like to… to love that much.

    Thank YOU for being so creative, fabulous, and for rocking it out every. single. day.
    I hope taht your back gets better soon!


  124. I love coming here. I always leave with a smile on my face. Your girls are so beautiful and you capture them effortlessly.

    Sorry about the back pain. Sometimes God works in mysterious ways. Maybe you needed a break…a few days of down time to just be. I feel the same about running. Makes you feel like you can do anything. Which I’m starting to believe is true;) Have a blessed day.

  125. Must.have.cape. No, seriously, I’m ordering one for my little dude right after I post this. So very awesome! :)
    Beautiful post. I feel like I say that every time I read. But it’s true. Your words are so uplifting and inspiring. I love the way you love your family…..and LIFE.
    Sorry about your back. I hope all the Yoga and running helps! Also try alternating heat and cold. I’m an old pro at jacking my back. lol
    I see paper chains in my near future. See what I mean…inspiring! :)

  126. You have inspired me to be the best mommy in the world!

  127. Love, love, love it!!! You are an amazing woman and mother and insperation!!!!

  128. While I painfully await my impending due date (5 days from now) I am reminded that my running shoes patiently await our reunion. I am certainly happy that i am having another child i do agonize for the pounding pavement and exhilarating feeling I get when my run is over and my son comes running out to greet me after a 5 mile Sunday jog. Thanks for the reminder. Keep on running- it makes you a junkie. ps- Landslide on my blogg too! Some days you just resonate so much with me! XOOXOX

  129. Welcome back. You made me want to excercise…for that I am grateful:)

  130. Thank YOU so much for everything! Thank you for touching my soul with your beautiful writing. Thank you for making my heart smile with your amazing photography. Thank you for sharing the love, joy and beauty of your life. Thank you for embracing the community you have here. Thank you to your readers for sharing their insightful comments. I’m feeling the loving energy growing stronger. :)

    Natalie Goldberg and Richard Wright quotes are powerful! Love them!

    Lainey is a wonderful big sister! The best of Nella’s flexibility is yet to come. J loves music. Anytime she hears music her show begins. Her dance moves + her gymnastic skills = Priceless. :)

    Rik, love the Mother Teresa quote. Thank you so much for always sharing your wisdom with such a grace…

    Jennifer from Annapolis, thank you! I love your kindness. :)

    Hope your back feels better soon. Sending healing energy your way.

    May you have a beautiful weekend~

    “Our path in life evolves through a process of unfolding, which gives rise to an emerging flow of new discoveries, as what was hidden becomes revealed and what was obscure becomes accessible and clear. At least two different kinds of unfolding operate in human development: a gradual or “horizontal” unfolding, in which new discoveries and developments appear progressively, each one building on those that preceded it; beyond that, a more sudden and surprising kind of “vertical” emergence, in which larger deeper kind of awareness unexpectedly breaks through into consciousness, allowing us to see things in a radical new light. The organic process of unfolding reveals the creative, emergent nature of human experience.” ~John Welwood

  131. Thanks Kelle for your inspiring words that I so needed today! 😉 Hope your back feels all better ASAP! I feel your pain, I too, have back troubles every now and then . . . NO FUN! Hang in there – it will get better.

  132. Thanks Kelle for your inspiring words that I so needed today! 😉 Hope your back feels all better ASAP! I feel your pain, I too, have back troubles every now and then . . . NO FUN! Hang in there – it will get better.

  133. Hi Kelle,
    I don’t know if you have heard of the Be Good Tanyas, but their song The Littlest Birds is pretty great.

    Littlest Bird Lyrics:
    Well I feel like an old hobo,
    I’m sad lonesome and blue
    I was fair as a summers day
    Now the summer days are through
    You pass through places
    And places pass through you
    But you carry ’em with you
    On the souls of your travellin’ shoes

    Well I love you so dearly I love you so clearly
    Wake you up in the mornin’ so early
    Just to tell you I got the wanderin’ blues
    I got the wanderin’ blues
    And i’m gonna quit these ramblin’ ways one of
    these days soon
    And I’ll sing

    The littlest birds sing the prettiest songs…

    Well it’s times like these
    I feel so small and wild
    Like the ramblin’ footsteps of a wanderin’ child
    And I’m lonesome as a lonesome whippoorwill
    Singin these blues with a warble and a trill
    But I’m not too blue to fly
    No I’m not too blue to fly cause

    The littlest birds sing the prettiest songs…

    Well I love you so dearly
    I love you so fearlessly
    Wake you up in the mornin’ so early
    Just to tell you I got the wanderin’ blues
    I got the wanderin’ blues
    And I don’t wanna leave you
    I love you through and through

    Oh I left my baby on a pretty blue train
    And I sang my songs to the cold and the rain
    I had the wanderin’ blues
    And I sang those wanderin’ blues
    And I’m gonna quit these ramblin’ ways
    One of these days soon
    And I’ll sing…

    The littlest birds sing the prettiest songs….

    **I don’t care if the sun don’t shine
    I don’t care if nothin’ is mine
    I don’t care if I’m nervous with you
    I’ll do my lovin’ in the wintertime


  134. Your cape should say “Super Mom” of course! :-)

  135. i love, love, love reading what you have to say. seeing a glimpse of your life. your amazing photos and all your exciting activities! you’re a very inspiring writer. you give me a new, fresh, optimism about life. have you ever heard of/read “the artist’s way” by julia cameron? i think you’d appreciate it.

  136. Oooh, and thanks for the hook-up with the Belkai jewelry! I ordered a cherry blossom necklace for my mom and a custom one for me with my kids’ names…and two days later, got them in the mail! Super cute.

    And those capes? Wow, I wonder what a MONSTER cape would look like?!!!

  137. KELLE, love it, as always. Hope your back is better. We all have different views but I have to say that i have gone to 3 different chiropractors and it never helped. WOrth a try tho. Aww, RIK, as always, love your words. TO WENDY – THAT IS GREAT, love it (as a mom to dtrs too). TO LORI-yes, isnt that a great quote! To SHER – love what you wrote.

  138. Thanks for posting through the pain. Loved the words and the pics. I recognized the book Lainey was reading. I love the illustrations by Eloise Wilkin. I wish I would have saved all the books she did. Jus saying.

  139. ugh, those photos of you kissing nella’s soft little skin and nose just make me want to cuddle up with a baby so badly.

  140. Ouch! I have hurt my back like that before and it sure does hurt! Take care of it and relax with your babies!

  141. entranced by your writing. running…i’m in the same mode currently. it’s my love/hate relationship. your girls are beautiful and your writing…thank you!

  142. We did a superhero party for my grandson’s 5th birthday. I made all the capes, and it was great fun, but alas, the boy has lost his cape! Nobody can figure out where it went…my guess is he left it at a neighbors home and they are flying high indoors where they can enjoy the magic of a cape!

  143. Beautiful. As always, so soul-stretchingly touching & beautiful. Thank you, too.
    In the words of Winston Churchill: “never, never, never give up.”
    I don’t know what I did before I found your blog. Honestly. You are the bomb.

  144. This post made me cry and made me happy, how weird. And ask my friends, I always talk about having a cape. When I am in the nursing home, that’s all I want, a big cape. If I don’t have one, bring me one, put it on me, I will still be flying.

  145. Ouch! So I’m going to guess from the “downward dog” mention that you are at least somewhat familiar with yoga, yes? I peeked on Gmaps to see if you have any yoga studio’s in your area cuz I think checking out a yoga class or two now and then might really help strengthen your back! “Bala Vinyasa Yoga” is in Naples- not sure how to close to you, but it might be worth checking out…good luck!

  146. :)
    simple as that!

  147. Just sending you some love. Beautiful post today :)

  148. Holly –
    Those quotes are all from books that I have read. As I read a book I dogear the pages that have quotes on them that I like (love!) and when I finish the book I write them all into one notebook. It’s fun to read through the notebook when I’m in need of a good pick-me-up or a refresher on what a certain book was about.
    Glad you enjoyed them!!

  149. Back feeling better? Hope so! Does Lainey want to join you in doing the downward dog yet? Or, is she just laughing at her mom…that what my kids do!

    Somehow I missed the photo of Nella’s foot (while wearing red shirt) the first time I looked at the picture! Love, love how our kiddos feet are ready-make for flipflops! We have many cute pictures of the “sandal gap”, or the wider than usual space between the 1st and 2nd toe. Another adorable feature in children with Ds. If only all feet were this adorable!!

    Jill B (Overland Park, KS)

  150. kelly
    I just wanted to say thank you. Im a univerisity student and I’ve hit a personal rough pach. I am a regular reader (follower) of this blog and i have to say, that what ever you write wether is full of joy or fear it makes my day a bit better, your pictures and words help to put a smaile on my face. Through reading this blog and the personal experiences that I have had I now know that we have to live life one moment at a time something that is an on going learning experience.
    On a separate note I work with children with special needs of all types. I recomend your blog as the one to read for the parents of the children i work with, your acceptance and love for both your children is something that I don’t always see with in the families i work with So thank you for your unconditional love, honesty and acceptance of both your girls. Nella fexability will grow with her and get even more amazing, you may have a future gymnast. :)

  151. I think I need Lainey’s dress in my size! I also think you should get new running shoes, especially if you’re newly running again with an injury. My body hurts just thinking about it. :)

  152. ,,,i think the cape should read,,,


    “enjoying the small things”

  153. Kelle! your girls are just so adorable! really makes me want one (girl)…=)
    thank you so much for continuing your blog! you inspire a lot of women (and im sure men) all over the world!
    by the way, it’s been pretty hot here in Orange County, CA the past few days, and it started raining, and i thought to myself…”so this is what Kelle is talking about”. i wish my son had cool rain boots like Lainey has! =)

  154. What a cute dress L is wearing.

    I also love Euro-trance music to work out to- my hubs HATES it.

  155. Thanks Linda MG!

  156. Vibes for your back

    Dude, could your kids be any cuter….NO!

  157. I needed to read this today and get re-energized. So thanks.

    Let it rock ….

  158. Lovely, gentle stretches helped me when I sprained the SI joints of my back. (Sadly, I did this while doing my first leg wax job. I don’t think I’ll ever get over the look of the most handsome ER doctor as he gazed at my smooth baby-bum leg and then stopped short on my other gorilla-hairy leg.)

    My goodness, the girls are growing UP! I love the SuperHero capes!

  159. I love this post.
    I love that you are who you are.
    Nothing else matters.
    I love your husband in the cape.
    Your family is so beautiful.
    Your heart is so full of life and hope and happiness.

    ps. I come here to see what poppa writes as well. He inspires me!

  160. maybe try dancing to this to get your back feeling better!!!!

    hope the link works :)

  161. thanks for the motivation kel…this is just what i needed to read when 7 1/2 months pregnant leaves me pretty drained and unmotivated. been missing you guys and love that you have been traveling. the story lainey is reading….baby dear, is samys fav. lets get the little girls together soon!! xo

  162. Hi Kelle!
    I love your blog :) It’s my daily study break…I’m a mom to two sweeties who went back to medical school at the age of 42 (Yikes!) I don’t have much time to spare, but I always make time for you, your family and your beautiful pictures and words!
    BTW, try Tiger Balm in conjunction with your running and stretching…I love it!
    Hope you are feeling better soon :)

  163. Hi Kelle!
    I love your blog :) It’s my daily study break…I’m a mom to two sweeties who went back to medical school at the age of 42 (Yikes!) I don’t have much time to spare, but I always make time for you, your family and your beautiful pictures and words!
    BTW, try Tiger Balm in conjunction with your running and stretching…I love it!
    Hope you are feeling better soon :)

  164. ahhh…reading it again today with the pictures. Thank you for sending the voice of your spirit out!!

  165. Such beautiful words and pictures! I hope your back feels better soon!

  166. My son Alex is 6 and has D.S. Well..he came home from school and we were having a snack at the table and we switched on your blog and Alex was looking at the photos of Nella and yelling, “aww, cute baby” and yelling “cute girl” at Lainey! It was so cool, …plus, we were eating apples and you had your apple pics….I had to share!

  167. Is Lainey reading Baby Dear?!? or is that the New Baby? I have been searching for a Baby Dear book forever. My sister has the one we read as kids and won’t give it to me!!!

    You are an incredible inspiration. I love your blog; you are so cool.

  168. Love those little feet up in the air. My Joshua is strong as an ox, but with the flexability. Wish I could say the same for myself.
    Currently we are negoting teenage land, oh my!

  169. I have only recently began to run and I am falling in love with it…like an ordinary-looking guy you wouldn’t think would be your type until you spend some time with him and realize its what you’ve been waiting for! Thanks for sharing your life with us.

  170. That is exactly how I feel about spinning class. WOW. I didn’t even realize it till I read this. You’ve inspired me to post about it. Sadly, it won’t hold a candle to yours, but thank you, regardless. :)

  171. Kelle~

    I want to also thank you… Thank you for writing your Nella’s story I feel in a way it was my story. Whenever people ask me how I felt when Jana was born I tell them to read your story. You inspire me every day. I think your cape should read “Super Mom”.

    I find running is the best medicine when the Bus hits. You can clear your head. Get re charged and yes even cry and no one knows:) Plus listening to Black eyed Pea always helps too (my running music)

    I agree Jana and Nella Bean could give Mary Lou a run for her Money. Jana folds her bod completely in half like a pretzel. She also wraps her leg around her neck. Crazy but oh so cool:)

    Hugs from Michigan:)

  172. That picture of Brett in the cape with Lainey is to die for! Adorable!!

  173. I hope your back feels better! And Nella’s flexibility? Plain awesomeness!!!!!!!!! She is one great superhero that baby girl :)))

  174. Thanks for sharing the good and the not-so-good in your life, Kelle. Always inspiring!

  175. To DISNEYROSE: YES<YES! I, too, have come to this blog and felt so uplifted, even when I am jsut having a pretty crummy day and, more recently, when I have been walking thru some real heart-breaking, gut-wrenching dark times of the soul. I came here when I had no one to talk to, to cry with. TO ROJASFAMILY: Oh YES, telling our stories. As said in Native American tradition, telling our stories is good medicine. Oh, we all so want and need to just be truly HEARD, listened to, with no judgement or someone trying to fix it. to know that one is heard and seen for who they are. To RANDI – THANK YOU< THANK YOU so much for the great quotes and words. I so love them! What a great group of people here and it all started with YOU, KELLE! Do you truly see what you have done here, what you have created in this little community and how much influence you are having?! I wish I could give you a hug!!

  176. That Nella in her knit halter might be the cutest little one ever!

  177. What a lovely post, as usual. I was so glad to read that you will continue to do it- you inspire me more and more every day.

    Also when I read your title post I totally expected to hear a Carbon Leaf song (they have an album entitled Echo Echo). If you don’t know their music, check them out. I think you’d really enjoy it!

  178. I feel like I say this every time, but it’s the truth: You are amazing! I, too, echo the thank you for the window into your world and the inspiration you give me every time I visit your site. You are just a very special Momma with a very fantastic family.
    Hope your back gets better soon! Blessings to you!

  179. New commenter here, been following you for a while. But I had to speak up tonight and say that I have my weekend plans now– I’m going for a run and then digging out my copy of Writing Down the Bones when I get home…
    Thank you.
    -Amanda (BabyJack’s mom)

  180. Echo, girlfriend, echo!
    Every day little Nella bean grows more and more beautiful. Like all the love poured into her soul shines as a testament to her mama, and dada and awesome big sissy!

    I have my own little almond joy – one of my twins, Braden. I know Braden is a mirror to my heart. Love just radiates from his face.
    Just wait – it keeps getting better!

    mom to Allie, Cameron, twins Braden and Grant, angel Scarlett, and Greyson

  181. Tonight, I loved seeing the buddah belly on my 13 month old poking out of his pjs. Just loved, loved the moment. Thought to share it with you. A fond reader in Charlottesville.

  182. In my comment (way back in the list now!) I was sort of trying to say what Maria said much better, except that I hadn’t exactly noticed a change, more that there was the odd sign that you were more aware of the readers and what their expectations or responses might be. So that sometimes, only very very slightly, it seemed a bit different to the normal you, and others times a slight hesitancy or feeling the need to explain. It was slight, it was not veering off course or anything drastic. Maybe I read it wrong. And on the whole I have never seen anyone so able to remain consistent in the face of all the changes and changed readership, it has been a true testament to your genuineness. But, still when I read this I was so happy. Because there is no other blog I ever go to where I so genuinely want the writer’s unadulterated truths, and real inner spirit. I like yours, so, whatever you want to say, goes with me. And because you are right, this is your blog and your place, and however many visit it, you are the author of this space.

    ps Hi Linda! Still sending those good vibes to you, I know they have to make it across the Atlantic but I hope they reach you soon!

  183. Just when I thought that I couldn’t enjoy your blog anymore, you go and write about running. Running is my passion, my stress relief, my me time, my meditation, my morning cup of coffee, my evening glass of wine…

    Great post! Thank you. Gotta go, i’ve just been inspired to go for an evening run!

  184. 591-4711 Pelican Sports & Rehab (physical therapy)
    91st and US41
    Come get help for your back. before you keep running and it gets goofier :) i don’t own the place so i can’t help you for free, but we take most health insurances.

  185. I truly love your blog! After a long and chaotic day I find comfort in reading your words and seeing the precious pictures you post of living life fully :0) I love sweet Nella’s professor look too! I smile everytime I look at those photos. Thank you for inspiring so many people and for sharing your joys and journey with us!

  186. I have been reading your blog since you were about 6 months pregnant with Nella. I have a daughter that is a month older than Lainey and I am also shamelessly addicted to Gap kids clothes. Another person commented that your blog is like a ray of sunshine and they are absolutely right. Keep writing about the things you love and being an inspirational Mama.

  187. Know you probably have enough quotes to fill up about 8 spiral notebooks, but here is one I thought everyone would enjoy.

    “Be more concerned with your character than your reputation, because your character is what you really are, while your reputation is merely what others think you are.” -John Wooden

    Jill B (Overland Park, KS)
    -I know, I is getting really old to see where I live after my name. But, can’t drop it now or I’ll be lost in the shuffle of the other Jill commenters….some of which I don’t have the same opinions as! =)

  188. TO LUCY**..I wasnt sure, but did you mean ME<when you said “Linda”. If not, excuse me. IF SO, thank you so much! I SO appreciate that! Tough times for me and i can use all the prayers, good thoughts, visualization, good karma! You said “across the Atlantic”. Where are YOU? To JILL, too funny, cuz my name and location is all included, but thats to differentiate me too.

  189. just fell upon your blog randomly through a friend of mine who is a friend of yours. love everything. your photos, your words and your passion. thanks for being an inspiration and for making me laugh. :)


    Is it weird that Nella in the jean jacket may be my favorite new thing I have seen since my giant absence from your blog. !! and yes. the glasses are new to me too.

    I got glasses at 3-4 ish. later than nellabean. but I will tell you this. they looped around my ear and I told people I had earrings. and i thought i aced every school picture with those beauties. my mom gave me the largest size frames possible. in other words, the frame was the same size through middle school. I have a twin sister. and our childhood pictures would be borefest usa without those gems. the glasses. everything unique adds pizazzzz.

    also. i see everything hilarious you write- ex. “someones gonna kick mary lou rettons ass.” please. im laughing here. rolling.


  191. I just recently found your blog, and can I just say..WOW! Such an inspiration to moms everywhere. I will be following what you have to say each day. Your girls are adorable!

  192. Kelle, I never post a comment here, but I had to this time. I love your blog. I’m also an artsy mama in love with 2 little girls. That little Golden Book Lainey is looking at was my VERY favorite book when I was a little girl. I read it so many times the spine fell apart and my parents taped it back into a semblance of repair with thick masking tape. When I was a teenager I found a brand new copy at a grocery store and bought it for my own future little people.

    Warmed my heart to see your Lainey with “my book”. :-)

  193. So, I wasn’t going to post. I think “she has 193 comments, why would she want one more?” But here I am, number 194, and proud of it!

    I have been needing a boost. An inspiration, a reminder… of why I need to get out and hit that pavement. More than losing these babies pounds I am still carrying longer than I would have liked. I need to go out there and remember what it feels like. Remember why I use to love to run. The rush, the music in my ears, the pain followed by a stride that no one can stop. Your right, when I run, I can do anything. Anything, baby!

    So tonight I am denying the fact that its a Friday night, and that I am tired from a long week of work. I am denying the fact that there are other things that need to be done. I am denying the fact that I haven’t ran in a long time and its gonna hurt. When baby goes to bed, I am gonnna get in my zone, I am gonna find the runner within that is hiding out, I am going to hear the whoosh-whoosh, I am going to do it!

    Thanks for the boost, the inspiration I needed to get this booty in action!

    Love the photos, love the words… your girls are full of sweetness and sugar! And thank you, for sharing and finding your “stride” to give to all of us. We need it.

  194. It sounds like you need a massage or a chiropractor! Ouch. :(

  195. I have a question… in the pic with Lainey jumping on the beautiful canopy bed, what color paint are your walls?? I have big plans for my master bedroom and that looks to be the exact color I am searching for. Right now I have 6 different shades of gray/blue on my wall to test out but nothing is right. Thanks so much! Jessie

  196. Hey Kelle,
    what an amazing woman you are! you just say it as it is, even in difficult times you reveal your heart!Thank you so much! you just live life to the fullest! you go girl!! that’s so amazing to have girlfriends who you can just be you with, and have a blast! that is such a huge blessing!! not all of us women are privileged with that!! it’s always encouraging to read what you write or see the pics you post, you are my pick-me-up many a time, & I just want to say ‘Thank you’ for that! you are so blessed with being able to put to words what’s goin’ on inside of you, so thank you once again for bringing life to my corner of the world through the wonderful invention called the internet!!
    be blessed

  197. Kelle – In this crazy internet world, I consider you a friend. I love checking in on your life as it mirrors mine in many ways. Please continue b/c to this SAHM, taking a brek to check inon you and your beauties and to read your inspiring and real words, keeps me going on THOSE days ; ) Thank you.

  198. TO BCubed 1353: I just LOVE it! I, too, have collected Quotes..little bits also from books I read, etc. forever, since I can remember! It’s so great to learn that others do similar things~

  199. LOVE the pictures of you kissing Nella. So very sweet. And I’m so happy to hear you’re going to say it like it is! Be yourself because who you are is beautiful :)

    xoxo, Angie from Ohio

  200. Hello Linda, yes – I did mean you! I hope I’ve got my geography right, I am in the UK – I live in London but at this exact moment I am visiting my mum in the midlands countryside. Maybe I should pop my location in my name too – I noticed another Lucy around!

  201. One more quick hello to Linda MG. You can’t ever change your “signature” or else we wouldn’t know how to quickly scroll through and find our blog mama!!

    Jill B (Overland Park, KS)

  202. you probably get tired of hearing these words, but yours is my favorite blog. every time i see a new post of yours pop up in my google reader, i get so happy! you are so inspiring! i often talk to my husband about “kelle, the awesome photographer with the 2 cute girls.” :)

  203. Linda – I agree with Jill B!! In my scanning through the comments I look for your comments as well as Poppa’s (Rik’s) amongst a couple of other people and would be lost in searching for a different name!!!

    I’m also glad to know that I am not alone in keeping bits and pieces of books… It really does make for a great collection of quotes!!

    Somehow I got logged in here under my aol account :::confused~shrugs shoulders!:::! But check out my blog at (I normally comment as FEAS613). I love how comments on Kelle’s blog turn into a discussion and when you read it – it sounds to be a conversation amongst friends. Although I do feel I should apologize to Kelle for reading hundreds of other people’s conversations!!

    Linda, don’t know the story or the reason as to why Lucy is sending her thoughts and prayers your way. Hope everything is alright with our Blog Mama!! Sending you lots of good wishes and prayers!
    ~Beth (Brookfield, CT 😉 )

  204. Get thee to a chiropractor, lady! No need to suffer with a bad back — chiropractors are the BEST!

  205. Downward dog deffinately helps the bad back. I have had weird lower back issues seen I was a teen. I can only stand for so long until my lower back starts aching. Stretching does help. I love your blog..your writing is very refreshing.

  206. To LUCY – oh, London. So jealous, I always wanted to visit that city! Aww, JILL, thank you so very much ( I always look for and recognize YOU, too, as well as a few others)- No i will not change my signature, cant do that as the Blog mama! hee..Oh BETH, YES< Feas613, NOW I recognize you – didnt recognize other name/signature. Oh, thats YOU, keeping a book of quotes. Kindred spirits we are. Thank you so very much for your kind words and good thoughts. Has been a very rough few weeks and a few here have responded to me about that, tho i havent revealed alot, for there is no need to do that here. Poppa also had written that he was praying for me. Just sort of something that shook me to the core, rather the dark night of the soul for a while and it will take time but I am doing better. I see a light at the end of the tunnel and it now feels like it is NOT a train coming at me!! Yeah!! thanks again to all for the kind words and thoughts! Love and hugs…

  207. Kelle~
    I found this today..

    It made me tear up thinking of Cole and Seth singing this for Jana someday:)

  208. Linda, I do. I sometimes feel like the guy at the back of the room who listens to all and puts it in his heart. The heart is full, but strangely, every day the capacity increases to hold even more. I think that is how a parent’s heart grows through the years. As to those dark moments on the journey, many years ago I met a humble little elderly couple in the hospital–she was keeping vigil by his bedside as he neared the end of a long and arduous illness. I had praised her for her faithful care to her husband as I had visited them many, many times. She handed me a handwritten quotation on a piece of notebook paper–she had memorized it and wanted me to have the simple mantra that gave her light for the journey. “I walked a mile with pleasure–she chatted all the way, but left me none the wiser for all she had to say; I walked a mile with sorrow, and ne’er a word said she, but oh the things I learned from her, when sorrow walked with me.” We learn more in the perilous shadows than we do in the brilliant sun. You are not alone…and the light is near.

  209. Capes are definitely the coolest things ever.

  210. Oh, RIK!! I so wish i could just give you a hug, but here are virtual hugs ((( )))> “Poppa” Ri, you SO ARE tht guy at the back of the room. I think I and many others put so much in our hearts. And YES, the capacity somehow keeps increasing. As a parent, i agree with you so much. Oh, Rik, you are such a bright light. It shines thru your words. What a big heart you have and compassion and non-judgement. Kindness. No wonder Kelle is the person, and mom, that she is! I just love you, tho i dont really “know” you. Re: those dark moments on the journey, oh yes, we sure do learn from the darkness and sorrow. But it ain’t no fun! ha.. Dont wanna get into a lot of MY story here, for this is not my blog. And dont wanna be a downer in this bright place, this blog. But i guess it is no surprise to all, that awful stuff happens. I am no stranger to sorrow or darkness, as is true of many many people. My twin sister was murdered long ago when we were 18. I have lost others thru death, but that was the hardest. Interesting enough, my very recent dark journey has nothing to do with death or illness, yet it is still only the SECOND hardest thing i have walked thru. It has to do with someone very very close to me – me finding out something about them that they kept hidden for so long and i never knew. I think I will leave it at that, Rik. But it has thrown such a shadow over me and made me question so much. BUT, as i said, i am coming out of it, out of the shock and “fog-head’ feeling. And yes, I do see that light. And, Rik, thanks to you,to many on this blog, i have NOT felt totally alone. Kelle and her outlook, all the positive here, has SO helped me. Especially you, Rik! I truly mean that. thru everything I have been thru in Life, i have strived to ensure that it does NOT change me, the person I truly am at my core. And that has been my goal thru this recent crisis. And to be sure I can still help others and think of others throughout this. Rik, may God bless you, for you truly help me and so many.

  211. Aww Nella’s baby legs. My little guy is 6 weeks younger than Nella and we just got him his first pair of baby legs (the black skull and crossbone ones). Just love how dang cute babies are in a onesie and babylegs.

  212. rik, if your (36 year old) step-son is a hoarder(serious hoarder) whose house is being foreclosed, has no job, no where to go , and threatens suicide to get his dad(my husband) to do what he wants, is curently and maybe conviently in the hospital right now and my hubster is bringing 8 million tons of this boy- mans CRAP to our house despite me telling him not to, and also next is probably bringing his 5 dogs and 3 cats to my husbands already 3 dogs and 1 cat.
    is that a deal breaker?
    is it eneogh to divorce over?
    im crying now because i cannot live like this.
    i understand my husband doesnt want to lose another chid(his other son died of a drug overdose in 2005) i feel compassion for him and for his son ,i want to throw him a life preserver as i know he feels like hes drowning
    but i think im suffocating.

  213. I love it. Love the last photo. priceless. :)

  214. KELLE/ Rik – Sorry, I did not mean to hijack the blog and share so much about me. Hope you understand; I was mostly saying Thank you to Rik and all who have been so positive and wished me well.

  215. okay, yeah, nella’s killin me in those glasses. i can’t even stand it. so stinkin adorable.

    ps, i never watch extreme home makeover, but they’re doing one with a family who adopted several (now adult) children with down’s. one just walked into his new bedroom with shouts of, “ooooh get a load a dis!” wow! check dis out!” and it made me smile, first off, because the “dis” reminded me of lainey, and also, because it made think of how i cannot wait to hear nella’s first words and see her little personality grow and bloom. and all this from a random chicago girl who has never met you but just loves your blog… what a life.

  216. That running quote just got plopped into my “quotes to save” file. Love it. Thanks for inspiring me as always.

  217. Oh gosh, I love that you know about Pip & Bean. The owner of Pip & Bean is a long-time friend of my husband & I. So sweet.

    I’ve been reading your blog for the past couple weeks and just in awe of your strength & spirit. Blessings upon you all…

    And, I like that you are close by (we live in ft myers)…so i recognize many of the places you mention (as husband & I frequent naples often).

    Have a fun week!

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