Thursday, March 31, 2011

I'm not the missing LINK!

I linked up my first blog post yesterday at Centsational Girl!!! This is exactly why I started a new blog. My old one was mostly about my girls (and had a lot of personal info) and I was ashamed of how unprofessional it was. Not that this is professional by any standard but who wants to hear blah blah blah about my kiddos all the time (besides the grandparents). I'm so excited!!!

The topic was SPRING! I linked up my pillow post from last week. Not anything too thrilling but it was my first go at it so I'm alright with it being a bit of a ho-hum post. Plus, I tried to restyle (or actually, style for the first time) the shelves of my TV cabinet but I want a lot of apple green and bright white pieces and just couldn't round up enough to make them look that good. I think I need to buy some cute accessories regardless of color and break out the spray paint!

Her next Fair Weather Forum is Easter Projects on April 11th and I'm hoping to have a one-of-a-kind project to add to all the creative ideas from everyone else! Go link up!!!

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

It's the litle things...

Two things happened this week that have made my life a heckuva lot easier.

1) I got a new car. No more cramming my groceries in my tiny trunk! Woo hoo!!!
2) I saw a woman using a Sam's Club cart in the neighboring WalMart and I am now doing it too! I don't have to wedge my groceries all around E in the cart and there's plenty of room next to G for the stuff I don't want smooshed. Plus, when E's sittin' up the girls can both ride up front.

Here they are in all their easy (well, as easy as shopping with 2 little kids can be) glory. If you look close you can see G peeking over the seat. It doesn't take much to make me happy. So awesome.

And, on a side note, I saw this tree while walking in my in-laws' neighborhood this past weekend. I SOOOOO wanted to let G climb in it. Isn't it the perfect little fort, or castle, or pirate ship, or... or anything a little mind could imagine?!? I WANT this tree in my front yard someday. Maybe for future grandbabies. Who knows...

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Springy Thingy

Just a little change can make things feel so much lighter and brighter. And the weather outside is letting me know its definitely time for a change!

This is the "before" with the dark brown pillow that came with the couch.

And this is the "after." Ikea, you treat me soooo nice.

This is the only problem I'm having ringing in this new and glorious season...

My mom painted this pic of my childhood home and I LOVE it. Unfortunately, it only comes out in the winter months. I need to replace it with something but what I used in my old house now has a new, more permanent home. Oh, poor me. I'll have to get some new artwork...

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

7 months!!!

Can't believe little E is already well over the halfway mark to a year. I love her SOOOOO much (teeth clenched, wanna take a little bite of her, "SOOOOO")!!!

Here she is, chillin' with her sign. She's a little slumpy still but we're working on that whole sitting up thing. Its over-rated anyway, right? Kinda like Pittsburgh in the tourney. Phew, what a game (yes, March Madness is alive and well at my casa)!

And here's her big sis getting in on the picture action. This is her first toothy smile on cue. I love it! G also did her first drawing of people (that actually sort of resemble people) right after this shot was taken. Since its chalk I can't save it so I snapped a pic and will immortalize it here in the blogosphere.

The pic is of (from L to R) "me as a baby in a swaddle, my daddy, and E grown up into a big girl with ponies (pony tails)." I think the monthly pics make her a little jealous of the baby which is why I always let her crawl in the crib for a shot of them both (thank goodness she only weighs 28 pounds).

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

You may be right! I may be crazy!!!

I often hear Billy Joel playing on repeat in my head. You could say its my theme song. Here are the two new paint samples up on the wall in G's room.

The far left is my first attempt, Behr's Blue Cascade. And, while I decided this was an awesome color, its just too dark for our tiny 10-ish by 10-ish foot space. The middle sample is Valspar Tidal Wave and the one on the right is Valspar Sea Serenade/Betsy Ross House. You can check out the virtual interpretation of them in G's room here. I've decided to go with good ol' Betsy. It is REALLY blue and I think I might be losing my mind but hey, its just paint, right? Right??? (chirp, chirp, cricket, cricket)

Sorry for the 800 posts on this one tiny aspect of her room but I'm really struggling with this. I was thinking about abandoning the Kilim Beige that runs throughout our house in the toy room and going with an light olive-y green but now, not so sure. I don't think picking paint color is a talent that I possess.

On a more exciting note, I've been working on an Ikea shopping list for this weekend. That's right, I'm heading Cali to visit the in-laws (oh, and squeeze in a little NASCAR...what? yeah. I heart NASCAR. Don't hold it against me, ok? I just can't resist. Some of you dvr Real Housewives, others find it therapeutic to scrapbook, me, I just wanna watch cars go in a circle...really fast.). Top priorities for the trip to mini-Scandanavia: curtains for living room, bedding for The G. And, who knows how much other crap-ola many other goodies I'll bring home.

Monday, March 21, 2011

Making special books keepsakes

I am stealing a WONDERFUL idea from a wonderful blogger on an easy way to document the growth of my kiddos and make keepsakes out of the books that are special to us. She swiped the idea from someone else too, so I don't think Brooke from Inchmark will mind the theft. We gave G the book Ballet Kitty Ballet Class (Bernett Ford and Sam Williams) for her 3rd birthday, along with a leotard, tutu, and ballet and tap shoes. We also signed her up for her first dance classes. Its an amazing program for 3 -4 year olds that is through the City of Las Vegas Parks and Rec and costs us only $17 (!) a month. I love seeing her in her cutie little outfit, she loves going, and I love the chance to chat with other mammas of pre-preschoolers.

Anyway, we traced her hand in the front cover of the book! I love that we will be able to look back at it later and see how tiny her little hand was. It will also help us remember when she started dance. This will probably be worth millions one day when she is a famous ballerina. OK, with the moves she's getting from me she's more likely to do backup for Lady Gaga. Or, if she gets her boogie style from her dad she'll only be famous when she's at the club and has had one too many "big girl" beverages. But, either way, its priceless to us.

PS. I just traced her hand today but I figured it hasn't changed too much in the last 2 1/2 months.

Friday, March 18, 2011

New paint samples for G's room

I showed you the painted sample of Behr's Blue Cascade on G's wall last week. The sample that I thought was much too dark and moody for a sweet, vibrant 3 year-old (although I love the color and highly recommend it if you're going for that sort of thing). And, to do my due diligence I decided a little more ground work was in order before buying another sample. Enter: Lowe's virtual room painter...

Valspar Tropical Mist

Valspar Sea Serenade/Betsy Ross House

You can see the old color samples on the wall which annoyed me at first and I thought about editing them out but then realized that because I felt the color was too dark, this was a good way to ensure that I didn't make that same mistake.

I also put the new Garden Party pillow cases on and removed the dark blue bedspread that had previously been on the bed. This gave me a little more true idea of how the room will look once I find my white matelasse cover. I ended up getting samples of the 2 colors above. What do you think? I'm excited to try them. They're more teal-ish than I had originally planned but I felt that all the more gray-blue colors looked murky which didn't scream 3 year-old either. And, for some reason, the Betsy Ross/Sea Serenade color has 2 names. One online and on the label of the paint can, the other on the store paint chip. Weird. The Lowe's guy didn't understand either. He also thought my almost 7 month-old was GIANORMOUS (he actually used that word). Its all good though because we delight in her pleasant plumpness. He also noted that his (much smaller) 6 month old wasn't nearly as chatty or responsive and active so I took that to mean "Ma'am (yes, I'm embracing it now that I'm well into my 30th year), your supa' fat baby is a genius."

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Bring on the Luck!

I can't get too into St. Patrick's Day. I'm not Irish, it's usually smack dab in the middle of my Easter decorating (which I love, by the way... pics soon to come!), and well, there's just something about it that makes it a little ho-hum. Although, I do think that the Irish Channel St. Pat's parade is my most favoritist event in all of New Orleans. If you ever get the chance to go, you should. Its like Mardi Gras with a guarantee of better weather and smaller crowds (aka, its easier to find somewhere to pee) but still with all the beads and hooplah.

But, I still like to honor the day. Who doesn't like an excuse to drink green beer and break out a color I rarely buy but actually do look pretty good in. So, picture this:

Me: Black fitted t-shirt and jeans, green scarf, green flower clips on my black flats, green ring on my right hand. Oh, and instead of coffee, I'm secretly sipping Midori out of that awesome bird mug. Or green beer. Ok, I'm not that cool. It's milk we put green food coloring in.

G: Sportin' that green tutu like she owns the world.

E: Being the lump but doing it with style in her cutie tootie green mary janes.

Unfortunately, I don't own any of the green stuff. Maybe I should get it all so we're prepared to look awesome next year. Ah. I'll just pretend and G and I will cut out green shamrocks and safety pin them to our shirts tomorrow instead. She'll think we crafted and that I'm a super cool mom.

Thanks to amazing artists and Etsy for giving them a place to sell their wares...

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Diet derailed!

A few of my girlfriends have been talking about spending the night on The Strip in a month or two. No kids. No husbands. Just dinner, some booze, great conversation, some more booze, sleeping in, and hanging by the pool. Errrrrrrrk! The pool? Where you wear a bathing suit?

Which is why I've been missing until today this week. I usually blog during my girls' afternoon naptime but Monday and Tuesday I was working out. Seriously. Me. Hopefully we'll know each other well enough in the next few months that this would naturally shock you. I. Don't. Work. Out. But the thought of these women, these beautiful, in shape, spend-a-morning-at-something-they-call-bootcamp (and have invited me too...crazies) women, seeing me in a bathing suit scares the who-ha out of me. I'm not large or fat, just squishy. But I've only known most of them for a few months and they are a great looking bunch of chicks (reference for later, by the way).

I've also been trying to watch what I eat a little more. Today for example, I had great plans of eating a Smart Ones frozen meal for lunch. I like to keep some in the freezer for days when there are no leftovers or I don't feel like a sandwich. I heated it up, stirred it, heated it again only to discover that...

Oriental Chicken sans bird chunks

There was NO chicken in my Chicken Oriental. Now, I'm not a nutritionist or math whiz but I'm pretty sure that when the whole meal is 240 calories and you take out the 5 chunks of chicken you're not left with much sustenance.

Which is why, after eating the rice, I was FORCED to eat 3 (OK 4) brownies to make up for the missing bird in my frozen dinner.

Darn you Smart Ones. I'm questioning how smart you really are...

Friday, March 11, 2011

Beef Short Ribs, Vino in the AM

I've decided that I want to try one new recipe every week. Its not a resolution or anything (can you make those in March anyway?), just that I've been in a bit of a cooking rut and need to add some new grub to my repertoire. So last night, I made this:

It's Beef Short Ribs with Parmesan Polenta and roasted asparagus. This was my first time making short ribs or polenta and I learned a couple of things.
  1. When a recipe calls for wine and you put everything in the crockpot at 10 a.m. its REALLY not fair that someone somewhere decided you couldn't drink before noon. I mean, there was was this open bottle of vino staring at me ALL day! Not cool. Not cool at all.
  2. I don't really like wine in my food. Obviously I like to drink the stuff (refer to point 1), but I'm usually a bit let down with the flavor when I cook with it. Maybe I never use the right kind. Dry, sweet, full-bodied... I don't know! Just poor it in a glass and let me guzzle it already!
  3. Polenta is an interesting beast. After reading the recipe I thought it would cook a bit like risotto. It was supposed to take 25-30 minutes on a low boil with frequent stirring (I usually avoid anything thats too labor intensive) but the stuff INSTANTLY thickened when I added the cornmeal to the boiling water. I swear I followed the instructions to a T. On the bright side, it turned out fine without me having to hover over it and get all sweaty at the stove.
  4. I WILL stir in gorgonzola for my next attempt. I used Parm because I already had some, and it was alright, but I love some good stinky bleu cheese (I like to spell it bleu and say it blueh!) and think it might have been a good compliment to the tomato-ey gravy that the meat cooked in.
Overall, it was pretty yummy. And, with the few changes I described above I think it will be even better next time! The recipe was from Midwest Living Jan 2011. Oh, and I omitted the fennel completely because, by golly, I just don't like the stuff.

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Want a moody, lounge-y blue? I've got one for you!

Taken at night with overhead light fixture

Daytime shot

Well. I'm not sure what I think of the paint. I'm thinking that its too dark. I really like the way in looks in the daylight BUT the shot was taken during the only hour or two that this room gets a lot of sunlight. Mostly, its pretty dreary in here. I don't want sweet girl's room to look moody. She's only 3. I'm sure I'll get plenty of moody when she's 13. Honestly, I love the color, but don't think its right for this space. Bah. Back to the drawing board. Oh, and can you tell that a certain little one helped out with the painting?

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

No paint, just clothes

So I don't have pics of the paint for G's room. Shocked, aren't you? But, I did get a sample and smear some on the wall. I even took a pic of it at night to show you. But I decided that I'd wait until tomorrow to show you so I could get a daylight version of our blue wall. I'm a little nervous to be honest. Its kinda dark-ish. But at the same time I love it and the way it makes my heart race just a teensy bit to think of her room actually being blue!

So, in lieu of paint, I decided to show you some spring wardrobe items I've been eyeing. Nothing fancy. Just a little sumpin' sumpin' to get my closet in shape after being pregnant last spring and summer and buying absolutely nothing.

  1. Whipstitch Cardigan, Banana Republic bought this Sunday! thinking the pink will look super cute with navy shorts
  2. Bathing Suit, Gap umm, could I also have her thighs and pre-baby belly to go with this?
  3. Striped Ruffle Racerback, Lands End Canvas so this is my new favorite online store. i think the clothes are PERFECT for my age which I sometimes find hard (don't want to look like I think I'm 20 but not quite ready to officially be a "soccer mom" yet either). I'm gonna order some stuff and I'll let you know how it washes/wears/etc.
  4. Shorts, Lands End Canvas excited for these...hoping for a good fit. might get navy and grey
  5. Sandals, Target these might not be the best for bending over and scooping up a 6 month old but, hey, they're $30 and might make me look like I have calves again!
  6. Flutter Strips Shell, Loft, cute under my new pink cardi from Banana!
  7. Strips Accent Tee, Loft, LOVE the cut of this!
  8. Dress, Old Navy, can't beat a simple dress to throw on for any casual occasion
  9. All-Star Slip, Converse, to go with the dress if I'm at the park with my kiddos!
  10. Tote, Target, Who doesn't need a new springy tote back to welcome the new season of picnics and playing at the park?!?

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Oh, the shame!

Well. Here it is. Horrible, I know. My poor little girl has been living in this room for almost 5 months now. It even bums me out to go in there. But, that is all going to change soon. Yesterday I showed you the sheeting for her bed and a while back the inspiration photos for the color scheme. Now there is nothing for me to do but git 'er done. Hopefully tomorrow I will pick up some sample paints, then Thursday let her take her nap in my bed while I tape and edge. Then Friday I can roll the rest of the paint on. Just saying it to you all makes me more accountable and I'm all about that!

Here's my plan for her big girl room.

  • Wall Paint: Skysail Blue (Behr) Similar to the band of color running horizontal
  • Headboard: Tutti Fruiti (Behr) Similar to the vertical strip (although Tutti Fruiti isn't quite radish-y enough for me, I might also leave the headboard white if I go with more colorful curtains. Or drape some fun fabric over it. Haven't quite nailed this down yet.
  • Sheets: Garden Party (PBKids)
  • Bedspread: White Matelasse (exact one unknown) I need to get a BB&B 20% coupon because they have a pretty cute one that will do the trick
  • Drawer Pulls: Caria Knob (Anthropologie) & Faceted Acrylic (Target)
  • Curtains: Jordon Blackout Kids Twill Panel (JCPenney) I like the pink and the multi but I'm afraid the multi is a bit too geometric for the sheets. Who knows? Maybe the contrast with the floral print will be kinda fun and funky. Thank goodness for in-store returns! We definitely have to get blackouts because this child is up with the sun!
  • or Solid White, which I know will look breezy with the blue paint. Its such a small room I don't want to overwhelm it so much that I can't add some artwork
  • Pillow: Etsy (will make my own using coordinating colors). I feel so bad that I can't credit the creator of this pillow. I bookmarked the pic, not the site on my phone. If I figure it out I'll update.
  • Chandelier: Portfolio (Lowe’s), We already have one that is similar. My parents got it for G as a 1st birthday gift and its super cute and just the touch of sweet that the room needs.
  • I also plan on making a banner similar to the one in the pic of the white drapes with coordinating colors. She's all about knights and castles right now (not the princesses that need rescuing...oh no! She wants to be the hero!!! That's my girl!) so I want to work that in somehow in a way that can be easily changed.
So there it is! The big plan. Let me know what you think and if you have any great resources that you think would work for my sweet 3 year-olds big girl room.

Monday, March 7, 2011

Having a Garden Party

Sorry for the hiatus folks. I went to visit my parents in Missouri and honestly, just didn't feel like blogging. I was going to make a visit to the cutest little sewing shop EVER and post about it (go ahead and check out the Sew Sweet Quilt Shop for yourself since I flaked) but G got sick, then I got sick (I had to go to the doctor TWICE! Serious bummer). The visit to the shop was going to lead to a fabric purchase and said purchase was going to lead to a post about the ruffle pillow I was SUPPOSED to make for my sister as a birthday gift. Major fail on my part. But, I blame strep throat. And an ear infection. And pink eye.

So we'll just start fresh this week with a nice Garden Party! That's right. Spring is starting to rear her beautiful head here at my house. Not only outside but also in my daughters oh-so-boring bedroom. I FINALLY took the plunge and bought some sheets for her bed! They're Garden Party from PB Kids and I love them.

Next up, a paint color. She requested blue and blue she will get. Tomorrow I'm going to post the dreaded before pic of her room. I'm so ashamed of how blah it is that I'm nervous to show you. Hopefully it will be so cute when its finished that you'll forgive how awful it is now!