Never forget.

Never forget.

Every night is pretty well scripted in Casa de Cashatt. Dinner, bath, book, prayers, bedtime. Ryker knows what to expect, and it makes the evening go more smoothly for the most part.

At the end of our prayers for our family and friends, we generally ask Ryker who he wants to pray for. Sometimes we get people and sometimes we get “cupcakes.” (This is how i know he’s my child.)

Today after we did our normal nightly prayers and asked Ryker who he wanted to pray for we told him that today is a sad day. I honesty was hoping to get off easily, but instead I got my first taste of how hard it is explaining something complex and scary to a toddler. He innocently asked, “Why, Mama?” I remembered instantly where I was, who I was with, everything I felt- which is too big of an emotion for him. I thought quickly of the millions of ways I could answer him. I chose to try to tell him the truth as simply as I could. “Some people who think differently than us made some bad choices and caused a lot of people to go be with Jesus. We learned a lot that day and so we stop every year to remember them so that we don’t forget.” “Ok, Mama.”

That “Ok, Mama.” has been on my mind since. I don’t take its weight lightly. It means that he trusts what I’m telling him. He believes the words I say. Which also means he will believe any hate, bias, or personal opinion I give him. He is looking at me for how to react to new situations, new information, and new people. As he gets older it will help inform his reactions and his opinion. Hopefully, I can do a good job of exposing him to enough history and diversity that he is an ally to all he meets.

I also hope I can teach him that although today is sad, there is another side to the coin. In the days following 9/11, people were a bit kinder, a bit more considerate. Party lines that have people today so divided they can’t have family dinners were blurred. They helped a stranger, called their long lost friends and relatives, and prayed for the first time in a while. Ultimately, people realized what was really important and we should never forget that.

“Julia, I’ve gotta go, we’ve got cows!”- Twister

“Julia, I’ve gotta go, we’ve got cows!”- Twister

Its been two months (and then some) since I’ve written anything here. It has been a tornado of epic proportions around here.

Ryker had an ER visit for a head wound and I had mastitis twice and strep once. Asher started gaining weight, but we were supplementing 2-4 ounces after each feeding, so we stopped breast feeding. I was “ok” with it. I cried a lot, but have made my peace since. We decided to put the house on the market. We’ve taken our first family road trip. I started back to work. I was “ok” with it. I have cried some. I imagine there will be some more tears. Ryker has started potty training. The last two months has been all. the. things.

Photos: Lindsey Simpkins Photography

Asher is sweet, easy-going, and has charmed us all. Ryker is the best big brother and gives hugs and kisses, shares his toys, and talks constantly about “his baby.” Watching their relationship grow and watching them interact is just as sweet as everyone said it would be. What no one explained in great detail is the shit show that is everything you try to do with a two-year-old and an infant. So for those who don’t know yet, I give you:

The steps to go to the store for 5 things.

Get two-year-old dressed. He doesn’t want the character Pull Up you have chosen. Manage a meltdown. Cue fussing baby. Explain to the toddler that you need to hurry so the baby doesn’t get sad. Toddler falls down leaving the bedroom in his socks and begins to scream as though someone has severed his leg. Comfort toddler. Toddler screaming insights baby screaming. Start the correct episode of Sesame Street after 3 failed choices to distract toddler. Pick baby up to calm him. Get puked on. Change baby. Stick your finger in poop. Dress baby, insert pacifier, place in Boppy within eyesight to begin getting dressed. Remember to wash hands (count this as a win.) Remove clothing, explain to toddler that everyone has boobies, insert pacifier. Put on pants. Explain to toddler that you don’t have a penis. Insert pacifier and shush. Put on bra. Insert pacifier and shush. Pull on shirt, pull up hair, and find flip flops. Pick up baby, insert pacifier, and shush. Brush your teeth and toddler’s teeth while bouncing infant. Place infant in one of the many “entertainer” seats. Cue screaming. Insert pacifier and shush. Race to find the “right” shoes for toddler and put them on. Baby has fallen asleep in entertainer. Gently pick him up, place him in carseat, and begin to strap him in. The “click” of the harness startles him awake. Cue crying. Grab purse, diaper bag, carrier, and drink for toddler. Open the door while bouncing the 50 lb carrier and say “Let’s go!” Use your most chipper voice. Try to remain chipper as the toddler declares, “I pooped!” Consider burning down your house. Open grocery app. Order 5 things, but add wine. Place order. Text husband for pickup. Remove baby from seat. Change toddler. Pick up baby, insert pacifier, and shush. Turn Sesame Street back on. Find your cold coffee. Try not to cry.

If that sounds terrifying, let me comfort you some. The next step is Ryker comes and kisses the baby, shares a toy, or says “It’s OK Asher,” when he’s crying because I’ve put him down to make lunch or go to the bathroom. Those moments make all of the crazy worth it. So, I may not get to physically go into a grocery store with my children for the next 3 years. Think of all the money I will save!

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I have bags under my eyes, I’m jittery from coffee, and I am thisclose to crying sometimes, but man I love these boys and watching them grow together and separately.

My goal is to try to write a couple of times a week to share our crazy, funny life with those of you who aren’t close enough to enjoy it in person. Hence the name “Chaos (them) and Curls (me)”

Asher Pierce

Asher Pierce

Happy Birthday Eve, baby boy!


It is the day before your birthday. Not even really a whole day, since we go to the hospital before the birds to have our scheduled c section. Yep- you’re on a schedule already, although, you’ve cared very little about playing by the rules pretty much since conception.

You have already given me a run for my money, sweet Asher. I have a feeling that the trend won’t stop once you’re here, but I hope you know that I would walk through hell 1,000 times over for you, so some swelling, diabetes, and weeks of contractions really are nothing. Not to mention the insane lack of sleep. (I’ll make up for that when you’re a teenager.)

You are coming into a crazy, loud, rambunctious house. You know that because you’ve already taken some blows while you’ve been in my belly. You have a big brother who talks about you all the time. You have a daddy who is funny, kind, and a big kid at heart. Together, they keep me laughing and make my days better. I can’t wait to see how you will fit in with them!

Your name will be Asher Pierce. Your daddy and I picked Asher because we liked it, but it is actually a biblical name that means “happy and blessed.” I hope you know how true that is. You have already made us so happy and are such a blessing. We chose Pierce because we like to use family names for middle names, and Pierce was your great great grandfather’s name. We hope that your MamaAnne would be happy to know her dad’s name will carry on.

We have been praying for you for what feels like forever and I’ve been feeling you move around and kick me. It feels like I already know you. I can’t wait to see if you look like your big brother. I can’t wait to learn your personality and watch you take your place in our family.

We have our first date tomorrow, sweet boy! The first of many! See you soon!



A note to my Squish

A note to my Squish

Hi Squish,

It has been two years since I wrote you your note telling you all of the things I prayed for you and all of the things we hoped and dreamed of in getting you here. It has been the joy of my life watching you grow these last two years!

I was right about a few things from that first note. You look exactly like your daddy. You have my eyes. You are impatient, I am impatient, and your poor daddy manages us both like a pro. You get hangry (me) and have to have a routine (your daddy.) You have your daddy’s sense of humor, quick wit, and hair.

Now, you’re about to become a big brother. This transition will be a big one for everyone but you, most likely. You are such a smart, sweet, easy-going boy. You care about everything and everyone. You are quick to snuggle when someone is upset and want to help everyone “stop cryin'” if they are sad.


I can’t wait to see you grow into the best big brother! I hope you learn some things along the way. I hope you learn how to fight, because it will teach you how to make up. I hope you learn that no matter what happens, you and your brother belong to one another, and I hope you learn to count on each other. I hope you learn that it is ok to not like someone all the time, but that love is not something that stops.

You may never know a time without your baby brother in your life. You likely won’t remember a single day of your first two years. I know I don’t remember much about life before your Uncle Heath came into the world. I want you to know that it has been so precious for us to get to have you all to ourselves these last two years. We will show you pictures and videos, and I am sure I will miss the times when you and I had Ryker and Mama time- just the two of us. I promise you’ll still get those Ryker and Mama dates.

You are the best gift we’ve ever been given and we hope that Asher is a gift we can give to you. A brother and a friend.

I love you, sweet boy!