cliffs of insanity

blog of conan, melissa, and the mob

The Elusive Family Photo


Family Portrait

*sigh* We did it. It may be a good 4 years since our last family photo, but at long last, we do have a family photo worthy of hanging on our wall. And photos of each child. And even a few photos with Grandma H.! Whew. Yes, Eve’s first portrait studio experience may be at the ripe old age of 2, but I’m just rollin’ with it. We do have lots of photos taken by yours truly, but to be honest, ever since I stopped using my “old-fashioned” SLR I’m not thrilled with most of the pictures I take. They just lack…something. At any rate… here we are! In all our glory. I’ve not posted ALL of them, but some of the better ones. And some of the worst. A HUGE thank you to Grandma Heiselt, without whom this was not possible!

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Congratulations Eve.


My little girl is finally wearing a size 4 diaper. She is now a whopping 23 lbs. Lightweight she may be, but she’s still wearing size 2-3T. So crazy.


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Not just a craft room


So after some experiences like these:



And some awesome, but inconvenient projects like these:



We decided it was high time we re-do the Lego room. (Well, that and the Legos had to be confiscated due to a little incident with throwing the Legos out the window…) But “craft room”? That just sounded way too… Mom-ish. So Conan invented his own moniker:



Now we use that space to create all kinds of things! So much fun! It may be a constant disaster area, but I love finding Burke busily at work creating a dozen paper bag puppets; or Neils making paper airplanes for all the kids; or any number of creative projects that come out of that space! It’s awesome. Thanks, Conan.

And then there’s Neils…



Neils is such a joyful soul. He is enthusiastic about life, and I love that. He is starting to grow into his role as big brother, which is wonderful  when it means he finds ways to help and care for his siblings. Not so wonderful when it means he’s just plain bossy and rude to them, but he’s learning. I cannot believe just how grown up he is these days. He’s as tall as my shoulder, I can almost wear his shoes, and so much fun to talk to. He is loving Cub Scouts and earned his wolf last Wednesday. He went backpacking for the first time with his Dad and some friends this summer, which was awesome, but I’ll let Conan post about that.

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Keane the Beane



I am realizing, now that Neils and Burke are at school how overlooked my Keane Beane tends to get. His brothers are very vocal, thrive on attention, and are very good about asking for it in appropriate ways so I try to reward that by offering it when it’s asked for. Keane is my mellow child. The ONLY mellow child, I might add. So I am purposefully posting his next, when my first impulse was to post all about his big brother and his latest adventures. So here’s more about my little boy who is perfectly content to remain a little boy.

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All About Burke


A little about the newest Kindergartener in the Heiselt Family: Burke


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Pleasant Lake


Oh the happy industry of youth….

Evangeline diggingNeils, Simon & Hali diggingBurke PouringKeane & Evangeline

About Food…


So I’m really trying hard to be a farmer, but I’m just not sure how those pioneer women did it with little ones at home. People always say it’s because the older kids looked after the little kids… but seriously, they had their eras where everyone was small, too. How the heck did they do that? Ah well, even with my strapping nearly-nine-year-old, I find it hard to so much as weed the garden without all the tomatoes and squash being trampled. So I didn’t weed much this year. We’ve had a fair amount of insect consumption going on out there via the chickens, yet we’ve still had a fair bit of damage by tomato worms and Japanese beetles. Consequently we haven’t had an exactly bountiful harvest. We do have some lovely personal-sized cantaloupes (yes, they are supposed to be that small!) that have been producing quite well. The children adore them, especially Eva!

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Evangeline Update


So apparently I started a post a LOOONG time ago to give you a little update. This is all it had in it:


Needless to say, she’s grown quite a bit since then… sheesh.

How ’bout this instead?


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Help us choose a company name



Hi all.  We’re working on a new company but need a name.  From our list of over 30 ideas, we’ve narrowed it down a bit and need some feedback.

Could you take 5 minutes and tell us which ones you like most (and why)?


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