mom's that ROCK. Read all about them here!!!

Happy Mother’s Day. A tribute to my amazing mother and this amazing mama I can call my friend.

My mom and my grandmother. She was beautiful and is missed by all of us SO MUCH!!!

Happy Mother’s Day to all you beautiful moms.

xoxo from me to you!

How lucky we are to call ourselves moms. Being a mom we have our good days and then the bad days which leave us challenged and in tears. Our children sure do test our patience. Let’s be honest….. it’s worth it all. They are our everything. We would do anything for them, and it for sure wouldn’t be the same without them.

Being a mom is one of the most amazing things in the whole wide world. From the excitement of finding out we are expecting them, through the labor, and then raising them through the years.

Our children have taught us all so much about life and ourselves. Lots of laughs, love and tears.  Being a mom of 4 I wouldn’t change a thing except to slow down time. Time just seems to tick and the days seem to go by so fast. With one baby being already 15 I often wonder, how? It saddens me how I can’t get that time back and how he will be gone in such a short time. I also think on how excited I am for what the future holds for him. Such a sweet and smart boy I have raised. I’m so proud of him and what he’s become and proud of myself as well for what I have raised.

I’ve learned from the best. My mom has taught me well. I’m proud to call her MOM. She has shown me the true meaning of life. All the lessons, how important my relationship with God is, and how to be a good human being. She has thrown me the ropes on how to be an amazing rocks star mom, and the important things in life. I don’t know where I would be without my mom. I look up to her for everything and her being here is such a comfort to me. She is truly an amazing woman. Beautiful on the outside for all to clearly see and truly just as beautiful on the inside.

Being a mom is so important. We raise the next generation of life. I can truly say my mom did an amazing job on my sister and I and I’m so blessed and happy to see everyday what my children are molding into and becoming. They are truly amazing little people with such sweet hearts. Humble, kind, and awesome small fries. I know the future will hold amazing things for all of them and they will all be something big. It all starts from the downline of generations. I think it’s so important to be there for them and to show them the rights and wrongs of life.

I want to say “Thank you MOM.” you’re the best and I’m so lucky to call you my mom. Like I always say to my kids “Love you to the moon and back!!!”

Next up.

My friend AMY. She is also beautiful inside and out. She is the real deal. What you see is what you get. She is pretty on the outside and has so much to offer on the inside. Please take the time to get to know this amazing woman. Her answers will make you laugh, cry and appreciate her. She is genuine. I appreciate her as a friend, she’s a wonderful mother, and I so look up to her.

Enjoy the rusted hydrangea blog interview.

Amy Whitebread Melin

  1. Your full name. Do you have a nickname you go by?

Amy Leigh Melin. In high school everyone used to call my Whitebread (and friends back home still do). But nowadays I’m just plain ol’ Amy.

2.  What town do you live in? What town did you grown up in?

We recently moved to Deerpark. I grew up in Mt. Carroll, a tiny town in the northwest corner of IL.

3.  How many kids do you have? Names and ages? Did/Do you want. more?

I have 3. Jacob 6, Adeline 4, Evelyn 2. HELL no. WE were done after two. Life happens.

4. What will you find in your bathroom? Name 3 of your favorite products.

Biolage or Redken shampoo/conditioner. My hair won’t stand for anything else. My friends homemade lotion. Shisheido WrinkleResist 24 eye cream. I love the thickness of it as it feels like it helps “fill” in all my blooming wrinkles!

5. Are you a religious flosser? Be honest!!!!!

YES! I wasn’t until a few years ago but now I do it every night.

6. What is your go-to lipstick or gloss? Brand and color. Please share.

In my 20’s I was always a Revlon Iced Mocha kinda gal. But I’ve switched to gloss these days and absolutely love Buxom. Claire and Gabby are my daily go-to’s.

7. Do you have a regimen? What is it?

My regimen is pretty much to try something new all the time. I was never a product person until about my early to mid 30’s. Now I just wash my face with Neutrogena day/night and use whatever serum and moisturizer I’m trying at the time. I’ve been using for he past few months ( a record for me) Lunda sleeping oil by Sunday Riley and I really like it. Also loving Shisheido WrinkleResist 24 eye cream.

8. What can’t you live without?

Books and beer.

9. SUV or minivan driver?

Long live the SUV. As practical as everyone claims the minivan to be I’ll NEVER own one! We currently have the Dodge Durango and it’s fine. Honestly I’m a sedan person myself, but the whole three kid thing changed that. I’ll always enjoy driving a car the best.

10. What’s one thing you do everyday?

Read whatever book I’m currently into. Whether it’s for an hour before bed or even just five minutes I have to get in my reading time.

11. Morning coffee or tea?

Always coffee. In the summer my go-to Starbucks Verona cold brew with milk and creamer. In the winter my favorite is a butternut toffee Keurig with creamer.

12. What do you love about your hometown?

Where do I begin? Everything. Honestly I’d move back home in a heartbeat if I could. I LOVE the small town feel with beautiful homes and barns. Everyone knows everyone (which is good and bad growing up) but as an adult I just appreciate everything it has to offer SO much more. People are so much more laid back and casual. Also way less materialistic and competitive. Plus nothing beats the home town bars where everyone literally, knows your name.

13. Are you involved in any groups or help with community services, schools, church etc??

Ha. Nope. With three small kids and no real close-by family, it’s impossible to get a babysitter to help out with anything. Once I get all three kids in school, I definitely plan on trying to help out more in my kids’ classrooms. Until then I’m best at donating items or money.

14. What is your favorite charity?

I don’t really have a particular favorite. In the past, I’ve always just donated to various ones that meant something special to me at that particular moment.

15. What is one interesting thing about you?

While this isn’t exactly interesting about me, I will say that it’s led to some interesting experiences for me. I grew up as the daughter as a veterinarian and because of that I had the privilege of experiencing a lot of things that most people (at least the around here!) don’t get to see or even imagine. As a young girl I went on a lot of farm animal calls with my dad and in the afternoons after school I would watch him perform surgery on small animals. While I was never completely grossed out by all the blood, guts and just weird things, it certainly made me realize I wanted nothing to do with that occupation.

16. What’s your best characteristic?

If we’re talking about physical I”d have to say my hair. I love being a brunette and I have fairly thick hair. If we’re talking about personality I’d probably say that I’m pretty trustworthy. If someone tells me something in confidence, that’s where it will stay. I’ve learned that’s a rare trait these days in people.

17. What is your biggest pet peeve?

Slow drivers. As a mom of three I’m always on the go. And while I do my best to be a very safe driver with my kids in the car, I can’t stand people who think 20 mph is the equivalent of 55 mph.

18.  Best advice?

This too shall pass. My dad always told me that when I was growing up and even still does to this day. It may be a silly cliche but its so true. Whatever problem I think I’m having at any given time, eventually it will work itself out. It may not always be on my desired time frame but it will pass.

19. Perfect dinner? Include the dessert.

A salad. (any kind, I love a good salad as long as it has good dressing!). Homemade bread. And then it’s a tossup between pizza and friend shrimp. I could eat either every day of my life. If only I had the metabolism of a teenage boy. And definitely carrot cake for dessert. Gotta get my veggies in.

20. What’s your favorite mommy drink?

BEER. I have been starting to class it up with some of my suburbanite friends and I do enjoy a nice red wine, but if I had to pick just one drink it’ll always be an ice-cold craft beer.

21. What’s your favorite restaurant?

The girl and a goat. I love me some damn good pig.

22. What store would we most likely find you at?

Nordstrom Rack or any of the local antique shops.

23. Do you have a hobby?

There’s a ton I wish I had but these days I’d probably have to say reading or writing.

24. What’s the most fulfilling thing about being a mom?

I think just overall watching them grown and learn. I love seeing them become more independent and the self-satisfaction they get when they discover they can do something themselves. And I swear, It’s not just because that means less work for me!!!!

25. What is the hardest thing about being a mom?

There’s a lot, but I think for me, it’s the added anxiety and constant worrying about my kids. I’d probably keep them in a bubble if I could… long as I could remain on the outside!

26. What is your biggest fear?

Something happening to me or my family members. I’ve been on the wrong side of the fence of that situation too many times and the thought of something terrible happening again haunts me daily.

27. What is the perfect date?

Hitting up a local brewery followed by a concert.

28. If you could change one thing about yourself what would it be?

I wish I had more patience. And not just with kids, but everyone in general.

29. You get a free all paid vacation anywhere. Where to?

That’s kind of an impossible question to answer because I’ve always wanted to see the world. I backpacked Europe after a month in college and it was one of my most amazing experiences. I certainly hope I’m able to travel again once the kids are older. But if I had to specify one place now I’d say doing a safari in Africa. I feel like so many of the native animals (I’m a huge animal lover of all kinds) are endangered and I would love the opportunity of being able to see them firsthand in their own environment because sadly who knows what the future leads.

30.  What is a secret trick you can share that any mama could benefit from?

I really don’t think I’ve learned anything that no one else has ever really thought before. But I will say that lately I’ve been trying to practice the mantra of a Kings of Leons song. “Waste a Moment” I think so many moms are so busy all the time and any spare moment they have they feel like they need to accomplish something off their 3-page long to do list. But I’m learning that it truly is ok to take 5 minutes and zone out. Read a blog. Pet your dog. Anything. Because doing nothing can sometimes be just as healthy as being productive.

31. What’s 6 items you would find in your purse?

Tape measure, skittles, sunglasses, some form of wipes, bags of Goldfish, workout headband.

32. Best present and worst gift you have ever received?

Best: My dad (at my request) had my mom’s engagement diamond put into a solitaire necklace for me to wear on my wedding day.

Worst: I guarantee there’s been a lot but the one that I remember best is one Christmas (during my college years) I told my grandma I wanted a new radio for my car (thinking CD player…). Instead she got me an antique radio. Of course now I love that but at the time I was VERY disappointed, not to mention confused.

33. Target or Walmart girl?

Definitely Target girl.

34. What does your house look like? Style?


I fell in love with my house because of the exterior…Something I never even thought I cared about. Inside it’s a mix of Toys R Us gone bad mixed in with some farmhouse eclectic. Farmhouse is definitely MY style. It’s hard to achieve my dream space with 3 wild little kids and a husband who has the complete opposite taste as me.

35. Who is your celebrity crush?

Impossible to just name one! But all-encompassing I’d have to say Robert Redford. I know he is old now but he was SO gorgeous when he was younger. And I think he’s even a good guy!!!

36. You won 1000 dollars and have to spend it in the next 2 hours. What are you going to buy?

A fabulous “new” antique of course.

37. You’re a new addition to the crayon box. What color are you and why?

Vintage blue. (although I’m not quite sure what that would look like?). But I love things that have a history and blue is my favorite color.

38. What’s your favorite movie?


39. Favorite singer/band?

No one with any sense or taste can have just one favorite. But one of my top is Jackie Greene.

40. Last person you saw in concert?

Tom Petty

41. What are you known for?

I”m not really sure. Probably being a voracious reader.

42. How would you rate your memory?

Horrible. Although I will say I remember the weirdest and most random things….none of which does me any good.

43. Who do you admire?

My dad.

44. What is really hard for you to do?

Make any sort of decision. I’m so indecisive about everything!

45. What are you amazing at?

I wish I knew. I just keep telling myself I’m a late bloomer in discovering my talents.

46. What is one tradition you want to keep in your home with your children?

Reading together. I’m currently reading The Chronicles of Narnia with my older two and we all enjoy it. Even when they’re older I hope we can continue with our family reading time.

47.  What is the number one thing that drives you crazy about your kids?


48. What is one thing your husband would say you do better?

Being able to deal with the kids’ constant craziness.

49.  What is one thing you would say your hubby does better than you?

Anything handyman related. The man can fix/do anything and everything.

50.  Are you organized or maybe even OCD???

HELL NO!!! I try and stay semi-organized but most of the time I’m just a hot. mess!!!

51. What do you typically do when the kids go to bed?

Pick up the house a little, watch a few shows with the husband and then read.

52. What is your worst/dislike to do in the house?

Oh, there’s definitely a lot but I’d probably say the dishes. Although putting laundry away is a very close second.

53. Beach or pool girl?

A pool girl. I hate having sand all over my body especially while wearing sunscreen!!!

54. Last book you read?

Cutting for Stone

55. Cabin or tent??

Cabin. I think I did a tent once with my husband eons ago. Not a fan.

56. Midnight snack?


57. Best gift you gave your kids that even you got excited about?

They’re still pretty young so we haven’t really done anything “big” yet.

58. Last nice thing you did for your love?

Went antiquing and came home empty-handed except for a growler of beer.

59. Are you sappy and romantic or skip it?

Skip it. Maybe once upon a time I had a sliver of that in me but with 3 kids later, who’s got time for that???

60. Silver or Gold? What are you into this 2018?

I’ve always been silver girl but lately I’ve started to really see gold in a new light.

61. What magazine do you subscribe to?

NONE. I’d rather read a book. Although I do get my hometown’s weekly newspaper if that counts.

62. What are your favorite parts of the year? Holidays?

Anytime BUT the holidays. The holidays just stress me out with all the forced traveling, the preparation and overall chaos. Spring and fall are probably my favorite times. By the time Spring rolls around I have one foot set in crazy town from being stuck inside, dealing with all the necessary outerwear and just being cold all the time. Spring knows just when to show up and save me. And you can’t go wrong with the beauty of fall, not to mention bursting out my favorite Frye boots and cozy sweaters.

63. Do you have pets?

As a veterinarians daughter, absolutely. We have a Golden retriever. I couldn’t ask for a better family dog.

64. What are 2 things on your bucket list?

Learn to sew. I suppose I knew how to once in a junior high Home EC when I even made my own sweatshirt. But alas, my mad skills are lost. I’ve always wanted to write a book. It’ll never happen but I’ve often daydreamed about how awesome and fun it would be.

65. What takes over your closet? Black or white items?

Always and forever BLACK. I”m not good at staying clean. Plus it’s just a way more flattering for all types of body shapes.

66. What’s your favorite thing about a man?

First and foremost, their sense of humor.


67. What is your favorite junk food?

Depends on the time of year. Summer is ice cream. Fall is candy corn. Any other time-chocolate.

68. What is a bad habit you would like to drop?

Limiting the time spent on my phone. It’s my go-to when I’m feeling lazy and there’s just a million and one better things I could be doing.

69.  One last thing you could tell us about yourself that would leave us surprised?

Before becoming a SAHM almost 7 years ago, I have worked at least one job since I was 12. My first job was working for Cargill and detasseling corn at age 13-talk about physical labor!! I’ve worked at my dad’s vet clinic, waitressed, babysat, tutored, worked at my college newspaper and yearbook and even worked in 2 different factories. I started my career in marketing and public relations and ended at an ad agency. I even went back to school and got a master’s degree in education. I have worked hard my whole life but it’s given me a strong appreciation for the art of “earning” vs. “getting” I hope I’m able to instill the important distinction between those 2 words for my kids.

70. One more thing you want to say or tell us about YOU. Anything!!!!!!

Writing has always been something I’ve enjoyed. (since I majored in it and all…) but as a SAHM of three little kids I’m not left with much spare time. But as I’m approaching a milestone birthday I’ve been trying to focus a bit more on me (not always the easiest thing to do) and since writing is a form of therapy for me, I’ve decided to start a personal blog…something I envisioned doing four years ago where I try to write about different experiences I’ve had or things I’ve learned. I communicate through writing way better than talking so when I have something to say I’ve really enjoyed expressing myself.

Check out Amy’s blog at

(and yes, that’s a play on my favorite book Atlas Shrugged.)

In loving memory of Amy’s sweet mom.

” 2 unmemorable years was all we had.” Amy writes……

Read more at her blog. –

2 thoughts on “Happy Mother’s Day. A tribute to my amazing mother and this amazing mama I can call my friend.

  1. Awe, Happy Mother’s Day to you too Allison! I remember when I was a little girl the only thing I ever wanted to be was a mom. The Lord blessed me with two beautiful daughters who have tender hearts, are loving, caring, giving, smart, creative and a joy to be with. Your a wonderful mom to the 4 “Lovies” and give your heart and soul to them. May the Lord continue to strengthen you today and every day as you guide them on their paths! XXXOOO
    Also Amy, it was very nice to get to know you better and hear your thoughts about life. I am sorry for your loss at such a young age. I too am a reader, love to get lost in another time and place and always have a book next to my bed. I love reading WWII fiction and learning about the courage and strength of the people from that era. Just starting The Nightingale by Kristin Hannah.

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