By Way of Introduction

Hi, I’m Abbe, and this is my blog!

I had a blog several years ago and it was mostly triathlon race recaps and pictures of my pug, followed by a long series of first pregnancy posts. I really liked writing and it wasn’t because I had a baby that I stopped. I would have kept it up (for my audience of maybe five people), but the Blogger platform I was using got so janky and hard to use, I just couldn’t take it anymore. Just trying to upload a picture got way too difficult.

So I stopped blogging and gradually shifted over to Facebook, which I joined after years of resistance but quickly found to be an easy way to keep in touch with family and share child pics, so it served that purpose for me.

But since then, over five years ago now, I’ve wanted to get back into writing and again have a space where I could talk about whatever I felt like.

Now with a family of five while working full-time, I’m at the apex of “perfection is the enemy of good enough” thinking and am either going to have a blog again, or say that I wanted to but never did it.

Aside from the obvious things like family, what do I really love that I want to talk about? Design, people, how we live in our homes, how we choose to dress, how we choose to act, languages. And there is a lot to say about living life in an intentional, uncluttered, sustainable way where we don’t let our *stuff* overtake us.

If there’s one thing I’ve learned since getting married and having kids when it comes to *stuff*, it’s that it’s not one tsunami, but several. And you’d better have a plan unless you want to be living in a state of low-level chaos at best for the rest of your life, seriously.

So these are some of the things I’d like to write about, and we’ll see where all this goes.

A few things I’d share about me to start:

1. My name is Abigail or Abbe. The Abbe spelling comes from Abbe Lane, who was a singer/entertainer in the 40s or 50s. My dad came up with the idea for the spelling and I’ve always liked it. Almost every teacher I ever had would be like “…Abe?” on the first day of school, which wasn’t my favorite thing, but I’ve still always enjoyed having a close-to-unique spelling.

2. Abigailius is a nickname my mom started calling me in high school. She’d have to confirm, but I think it was because it sounded a bit like Zeus, or someone highly capable and warrior-like. Not that I’m saying I’m those things, but at the time, I was juggling a handful of difficult classes, three sports, band and homework, and I think Abigailius was more or less a “You can do it!” assertion.

3. I was born on a very hot day in July in Minneapolis and since then have always been a summer person. I love heat and the feeling of the sun on me. I try to channel Minnesota winter stoicism when the cold rolls around every year because it seems like the right thing to do, but there is really nothing I love more than June to August. Well, fall is also pretty great. But summer is my THING.

4. Ever since I was little, I have been very interested in houses. Mainly the insides of them and how they’re designed and decorated, but also the outside architecture. I pored over floor plans and real estate guides and Architectural Digest as a middle schooler, and drove around a lot when I got my driver’s license just exploring neighborhoods and homegazing. As I’ve gotten older, the added component to being interested in homes is organization and how people manage their things. No one teaches you how to handle all your stuff, and I’m finding that you have to be really, really intentional about it if you want it not to rule you and waste your time. This is an area where I think I can help people because I’m willing to fight that fight and share my strategies.

5. I’ve always done a lot of sports and this is something my husband Micah & I have always incorporated into our lives. I played basketball and volleyball until 9th grade and then in high school got into cross-country, Nordic skiing and, I kid you not, shotput and discus. In college I got into rowing, which is where I met Micah, and after we got married we got into triathlons and marathons and had a blast doing that for a number of years on a team. These days I run or bike a few times a week and do yoga and some Nordic skiing in the winter.

6. The French language is near and dear to my heart. I always cringe at the “Are you fluent?” question because fluency can be achieved without knowing every French word, but I basically am and I use it sometimes in my work these days. I majored in French in college and was lucky enough to spend a significant amount of time in France as a student. That time of life had a huge impact on me and I grew up a lot during that time. It’s not an Eiffel Tower-and-beret kind of love that I have for French, but something more like an affection for learning how to communicate from the ground up in another language, the cracking of that code, and all of the cultural knowledge that you also need to possess actually do that. I never felt a calling to be a teacher, which is the slam-dunk vocation for a French major, so not having taken that route, I’m lucky to have had three or four different roles in international companies that have required me to use it. I still study and keep French dictionaries at home and look up practical words in an effort to enrich my vocabulary in a useful way.

7. I have a wonderful husband and three children, and I am beyond blessed to get to live every day with the feeling that my family is complete. That didn’t come easy. AT ALL. I had a super easy pregnancy with one baby and an unimaginably difficult pregnancy with twins, with a way-too-generous helping of secondary infertility in between. It’s a long story by any estimation. And it was so, so hard. You could have titled it “How Badly Do You Want It? No, Really. How Badly?” But as I think about that time of my life, I’ve come to appreciate how much it changed me positively. I have so much more empathy for people and developed a kind of patience that you could almost call three-dimensional if it had previously been two-dimensional and kind of not genuine at times. I also came to appreciate how hardships can bring about some of the most beautiful things: new points of view, new friends, rekindled relationships with family members, and in my case, supa-cute fraternal twins. When I’ve considered blogging in the past, one of my concerns was about how much I would share about my family. I want to respect their privacy and not have this blog be a glorified version of Facebook. But I certainly draw writing inspiration from my roles as a wife and mother, and that’s what I hope to share here.

8. I love photography. LUV IT. Before phones had good cameras, I would never go anywhere without an actual camera. Over the years I’ve taken tons of pictures out of a near-unconscious compulsion to do so. One of the greatest lessons I’ve learned from looking back at this very long reel of images is that WE ARE ALL BEAUTIFUL, RIGHT NOW. Enjoy your life right where you are. I want to share more of my photography with everyone and make people happy through it. Instagram has been a godsend outlet for me because it gave me a place to put the kinds of photos that didn’t make much sense to put anywhere else. And I’m hoping this blog can be an extension of that.

Well, as often happens, this got long. But I hope you’ll stick around. Thanks for reading, friend!

xo

Abbe

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