2 years ago

Fair Warnings [Svell Announcements]

Hello, end of Aug. Didn’t see you coming.   I like a numbered list, how about you?



I shall open my Etsy Shop by Christmas this year. It’s been nearly 6 years in the making, and after waffling every year over the technicalities, the “there are tons of other people selling the same exact thing” worryings, and me ignoring Craig’s urgings to “JUST DO IT!” The bullet is bit.

Name of my shop?  To Be Announced. Quite soon, promise.
Game of my shop? Selling illustration and hand lettered prints. Christian woven. Non cliché-bullcrap. If I see another framed “Live. Laugh. Love.” I’ll just figuratively roll my eyes for the thousandth time and not say anything.

And you’ll be hearing all about that in the next few months.  I’m revealing my shop name & logo soon. If you don’t wanna hear, I’ll say what Craig likes to text me while playing virtual Chess together (as he takes my Queen): saaarie.

I’m afraid, and nervous, and excited.


Lexington starts Kindergarten in the next few weeks  (I started this post 2 weeks ago) We are homeschooling him. The fair warning here is that I’ll probably bellyache about it.
I’m afraid, nervous, and excited.


Here’s our office space right now:

Property of Carolyn Svellinger

Craig is building me a desk space and I thought it’d be fun to blogument it.

Here’s the progress so far:

Property of Carolyn Svellinger


My brother got married last weekend.  Lexington was the ring bearer, and I overheard him telling Collin that ring bearers get to hold the flower girl’s hand and walk down the aisle.

Property of Carolyn Svellinger
I made the mistake of not having him try on his suit until the week before the wedding. The jacket fit funny, the vest way too small, the shirt was too big, and we hemmed the pants too short. Fool me once, AMAZON.COM.
After much shuffling in and out of various department stores, we got the suit sitch straightened out with the help of my momma.

Takeaways from the wedding of my little brother and a woman I totally adore:

  • Never, under any circumstances, allow yourself to be convinced by your darling Aunt from California of the absolute necessity to consume a large quantity of fermented onions at the rehearsal dinner.  No matter how pretty and pink they are, they are still onions.  Will not end well. Will not end until lunch time next day.
  • Do not think for one second that you can play the role of covert blogtographer who can get exclusive behind the scenes shots which wedding photographers never ever think to take.  Because your sibling is getting married. Your sibling whom you love very much, and you’ll be filled with so much joy and emotion that the only pictures you manage to take end up looking like a mere mortal hand held the camera:

Property of Carolyn Svellinger

Along with MULTIPLE accidental ceiling shots:

Property of Carolyn Svellinger


  • When your children outnumber you and your husband 2-1, and one of them is 18lbs and breastfeeding, do not think for two seconds that you’re going to be able to actually enjoy the event.
    I looked up at one point during the reception to see my brother waving the bridal party out to the dance floor and I wished to be there in the thick of it dancing like a fool, but in that second, I heard a great galumphing and saw Lexington topple backward out of his chair, bounce right back up and suck down the last of his adult sized glass of Coke which he thought I told him he could have (nope.).
    That scene sums up the whole night for Craig and I.  I know that sounds bad and selfish, and I love my children, and Craig and I were so relieved that Emmett happily remained at our table with an iPad the whole time in lieu of melting down, but that’s life, and this is our phase right now: corralling.
  • Your son with Autism will find a big problem with the fact that one of his brothers is sitting with the bridal party and not with him. He will bellow LEXINGTON! and NOOO! along with various lines from the book The Little Engine That Could during the Wedding Mass.  And your husband will remove him, and come back, and he won’t be any happier, and he faked that he would be.
  • And for the wedding photographs, your son with Autism will not smile.  In fact, he will wail.  Because Lexington is still carrying the ring bearer pillow.  Carrying the ring bearer pillow means Lexington’s job is not finished, and Emmett wants Lexington to be finished with his job. So he will cry until the pillow is gone.
  • And after doing everything you feel is rationally acceptable by calm-looking adults to keep your 4 month old, 2 year old, and 4 year old with Autism quiet, you smile for family portraits not having the funniest clue what you might look like- especially if you just got your hair hacked away by a different hair dresser [[because your BFF4E hairdresser is currently in Cambodia teaching women rescued from sex slavery how to cut hair for a living]] who promised mid-cut, to give you a fuss-free hair style, which stopped you in your tracks and you gaped in horror at yourself in the mirror as she hack-hack-hacked away, because you’re the only girl in your ALL BOYS family and you actually take great pleasure in fussing with your hair because it’s one of the only girly things you get to do these days, and she was already half way into the cut process when you realized she had a completely different picture of who you are and what kind of hairstyle you want EVEN IF YOU BROUGHT A PICTURE FOR REFERENCE.  It’s fine. Again, not my wedding :) But still. Yes, I’m a mom of 4, no I am not a hag. yet.
  • And finally, Catholic weddings concelebrated by multiple priests, who kill the homily, defining sacramental marriage in a way that your inner gospel singer repeatedly slaps her knee and mentally bellows AMEN! with hands mentally raised to heaven and requires you to approach Father afterward for a literal high-five and he joyfully obliges, who also joyfully dance with the bridal party- they just rock my face off forever.

Philip and Jenn- love you two.


We surprised the boys by taking them to see Thomas The Train this weekend.  Apparently, Thomas only visits 2 places in Ohio per year, and lucky for us, one of those places is our hometown.  Collin is hyper in love with anything Thomas related so, naturally, when I felt his little body jump in surprise when we watched Thomas steam down the tracks, I got emotional like a mom.  It was a whole big festival set up for kids, with jump houses, face painting, story reading, pictures with Sir Topam Hat, train everything, and tractor “train” rides –all in 85 degree humid weather.  I don’t even know why I wore clean clothes or showered. Craig got a few pics we like to call “Blogger in action”

Property of Carolyn Svellinger

Property of Carolyn Svellinger

So mom, much awkward.

Property of Carolyn Svellinger

Property of Carolyn Svellinger

Property of Carolyn Svellinger

And I think I’ve out-typed the average attention span tolerance for today, like 500 words ago.  So I’ll bid you ta-ta, until next time.


  1. I wanted to check back and see if maybe by “Christmas” you meant “mid September” but alas, I’ll just have to wait. :) Also, I chuckled at your “blogger in action” backpack struggle photo. That could totally be me. Good job, momma. OH! And ALSO I mentioned the BRF/RBF to a friend who gave me a blank stare. Thank you for caring about sentence structure.

  2. Awww, thanks for such kind takeaways from our wedding! :) Hopefully introducing you to Shut up and Dance will provide enough dancing in the house to make up for any missed songs at the reception. Love love, the New Mrs. F.

  3. LOL! It’s really funny to hear you mention the “Live, Laugh, Love,” because I honestly think a similar thing at times. Can’t we get more creative in our inspirational artwork, people of this world??? Your Etsy shop sounds quite intriguing, and I am excited to hear more!

  4. Love your blog…you are doing such a wonderful job as mom to those precious boys especially amidst the extra challenge of autism.

  5. Very excited for your etsy shop! I remember when I explained what etsy was to you while taking a walk down Turner drive when Lexington was still in a stroller. You’ll be epic, no worries!


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