Friday, February 27, 2009

I heart etsy

Ohmigosh, it's an addiction. I know I've been telling y'all that you can find everything you ever wanted there. You can give your house, your kids, your self, your car, your pet.... a totally custom look. I'm having a hard time with self restraint here...

Something I must buy Big Sister... leg warmer/footless tight things... here's a few cute examples (from knottybabywear and fategoddess). Big Sister needs those middle ones with the skulls and anchors to go with this nautcal shirt.... and then she needs stripes, of course...
I think I'm gonna order this pinafore (doesn't that sound super cute and southern?) from Lassie Girl. It reverses to the print in the small picture. Adorable!

She also has these other cute ones I'm debating....
Here's a couple other things I've marked as favorites... I could browse all day and spend all my money here.
Isn't this shirt cute? And would go perfectly with some of those skull leg warmers....
And wouldn't this be cute to have when I'm mailing out g-man's 1st bday invites? Remember, he's having a pirate party at the beach club!
Okay, really.... I've got to do laundry or go to bed or something! Do me a favor and comment or email me about your latest etsy find! This damn recession... I'm gonna live vicariously thru all of YOUR etsy shopping!

C25K update and other Friday night ramblings...

Y'all. I just jogged for 25. straight. minutes. I'm still breathing hard. I love running!! When I'm done. And I still haven't decided if I'm totally impressed with myself or completely embarassed by how lame my Fri nights have become. Either way. And AGAIN, I had to remind myself that I am not, in fact, a rapper. I don't have on gold chains, don't go by the name Ice-mom or E-pain or any of that. But I do love some rap to make me forget how much I don't enjoy jogging.

What happened to movie night with Mrs. Everything, you ask? Well.... my brother in Dallas had great tix to the Mavs game tonight (that's basketball, for all you girly girls who don't know!) so I told Mr. Fix-It he could go with him. Because I'm an amazing wife. ;) And for the record, we're still going to the movies. Tomorrow. I think.

Alright, time for dairy-free talk. For those of you who don't know, g-man has a milk allergy and (because I'm still nursing him), I cannot have any dairy. Big Sister had the same issue, but in a much less sensitive way. With her, I avoided cheese, milk, yogurt. It sucked but was totally doable. With G-man, I must read every label. If there is milk or milk protein or any of a million words that mean milk... I can't have it. So you can imagine how void my life is (just kidding! well, kinda...) and how excited I get when I find foods I can actually eat.

Case in point... have y'all had these chips and just not told me about them?

I hope not! YUMMY! If you're a fan of thai, you'll love 'em! I ate almost the whole bag this wk (it's a small bag.... full of air, mostly.... okay, I ate the whole bag!) Try them!! I'm guessing they're hard to find because I was at a somewhat fancier grocery store (getting free antibiotics for g!), but I'll try to look around.

And soon I'll get around to sharing my dairy-free oatmeal choc chip cookie recipe. Amazing. I just pulled some cookies out of the oven now. Since I jogged, I can have some. Right? ;)

Okay, time to do some etsy window shopping... I'm looking for some birds to finish up Big Sister's room. Here are a couple I'm looking at so far....

Happy weekend, y'all!

If today wasn't Friday....

I'd quit my job. That's a saying one of my best galpals and I used to say to each other. Every. Friday. We were working together at our first jobs after college. And oh, what we didn't know then. Neither of us were married, no kids.... probably the most pressing issue was how we could get promoted and what we were wearing out that night. The old days...

Fast forward to now. And the reasons why I'm thankful it's Friday:

1. G-man was up all night. With a piercing, horror movie scream. I honestly don't know how the kid does it. His Big Sister never tried to pull anything like this. That boy is dra-matic! What was his issue? Not exactly sure, but it went something like this... when I gave him baby orajel, it was his ear hurting... and when I tried the ear drops, it must have been his teeth. This momma is tired.

2. Girl time! Mrs. Everything and I are going to try to hit up a movie tonight.... the Shopaholic one or He's Just Not That into You.... Opinions, anyone?

3. I'm really, really looking forward to a weekend that isn't jam packed (especially since we all know my to-do list is so long that it never gets 1/2 done anyway!) Big Sister is really looking forward to going to church, something we've been totally sporadic about since... forever. So, we'll indulge her on this, I suppose. ;)

And one thing I'm not so much looking forward to, but MUST do. Workout #3 on week 6 of my c25k..... Tomorrow morning, my treadmill awaits.

Thanks to everyone for the great comments/emails on g's Semi-homemade nursery. Be on the lookout for Big Sister's Semi-homemade big kid room!

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

A Semi-Homemade Nursery

G-man's nursery is pretty much done (and I have a totally semi-homemade idea to finish the last big open wall - more on that below!) But I thougt I'd share, especially because I love to show people how easy it is to get big, fun looks for cheap (and easy!) with the help of the amazing artists on etsy!

For G's room, we wanted big drama on a reduced budget. After spending too much on Big Sister's crib set, I picked a bumper from PBK and just bought solid sheets/crib skirt to go with it - done. From that, we decided to go nautical.... but with a PIRATE feel!

My favorite part of the room is the gigantic pirate ship over his crib (do you see a tiny g-man in the crib?!) It's a 5 feet long white vinyl decal and I worked with an etsy artist to get it just how I envisioned. The Everythings came over last summer to help put it up. Vinyl decals are super easy to put up and super cheap. This one took up a huge wall and cost $50. And it's removable, which is important because we move alot, and the next people might not be into pirates. ;) You can get a vinyl decal to go with anything! Just go to and search for: vinyl decal horses, ladybugs, whatever!!

I have to give Mr. Fix-It alot of credit.... it was his idea to put up the beadboard (it's great because, as a builder, he sees alot of cool things and brings the ideas home!) I wanted to paint the walls navy blue and the beadboard white - lots of contrast!

Here is a 2wk old baby g on the changing table. I worked with Shelley at SingleStoneStudios on this Pirate's Life decal. Visit her here at her shop and tell her Elaine sent you! She's got some sweet birds I think I need to order to finish Big Sister's room.

This captain's wheel and oar are totally semi-homemade (just ignore the humidifier on the dresser!). I just bought them unfinished (for cheap!) at Michael's, took them out to the garage, and spray painted them with white glossy paint. Done! Speaking of spray paint... that dresser was Mr. Fix-It's as a kiddo! It was oak (we hate oak, sorry!) with awful hardware... he spray painted it black when Big Sister was on the way, we bought nickel knobs, and done! Totally new look!

Then, here are a few more details.... 3buttonsn2bows worked with me on the pirate night light, pirate trashcan, and the drawer pulls for the changing table (pirate ships, compass, parrot, treasure chest!). She caters to alot of the typical nursery themes.

(One of the drawer pulls - a pirate ship!)

Now to finish.... I'm on the hunt for some pirate fabric. I'm going to stretch it over a canvas, possibly have Mrs. Everything do some embroidery on it (G-man's Treasure Map or something!), and hang it over the rocker.

Thanks for looking at baby G-man's room! I'd love to see pics of your kids' rooms (we move every 2 years, so I'm always looking for the next thing!) Email them to me at oursemihomemadelife at yahoo dot com!

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Picture day..... not so much

So, this is G on picture day....

Yep, at home with me. With a fever of 102.2. And an ear infection. Poor g..... So, thanks to all of you who called, emailed, commented, smoke-signaled your opinion. (For the record, most of you thought he should be photographed in his stylish head gear. He has it off right now because it's making his fever worse!)

I had all these visions of posting some great blog-read today.... but the kiddo hasn't slept at all (minus a small nap, in which I was able to get in my c25k workout - wk 6, day 2!!)
Oh, and in other ear news today..... My niece A has an ear infection and walking pneumonia and is on her way to a 2nd set of tubes in her ears. And the Everything's daughter P has TWO ear infections and has been advised not to get on a plane (they're supposed to be traveling on Thurs). Seriously, it's an epidemic!

Okay, he has reached super pissed off status now. I'll be back tonight (I hope!)

Monday, February 23, 2009

Picture day at school - a poll

So, Mrs. Director stopped me on Fri as I was leaving the kids' school, to ask me if I wanted them to take off G-man's helmet for picture day on Tues. Picture day? She points to a poster (that I had obviously missed)....

So, what do y'all think? Part of me thinks - this is him right now, leave it on! The other part of me says - take it off, it doesn't match his outfit. ;) As you know, his helmet is black with Oklahoma State decals on it - making him a billboard for our love of orange. But right now, on the day before pics as I'm brainstorming what he'll wear... I'm thinking a brown polo shirt and jeans. And that doesn't 'go' with the helmet....

Helmet or no helmet!??! Leave me a comment and tell me what you think!

In other school news, Big Sister started "annsitioning" (in her words) to the big kid class over the last couple wks, but today is her first full day with the almost 4-year olds... Mr. Fix-It dropped her off and she cried and cried! Not like my outgoing little girl at all. She told me over the weekend that she'll miss Mrs. Teacher. "But mom, I love her soooo much." Awww...

And I like Mrs. Teacher, too, but is it wrong that I'm somewhat happy to be starting new with a teacher that doesn't know about this note that was sent home last month:

Big Sister is in her back-up clothes today because she was asked several times to leave the skirt of her dress down, but she wouldn't.

When I asked Big Sister why she had on sweats.... she said, "Mom, I kept showing the kids my panties!" with a big grin. Geez.... I thought we had until college to worry about these things. Or at least high school....

Be on the lookout for: pics of a semi-homemade big kid room! We finally finished Big Sister's room over the weekend and it looks amazing! I'll post pics of it (and G-man's semi-homemade nursery) really soon!

Friday, February 20, 2009

Pink & green & dots - a giveaway!

Y'all know that I simply adore all things personalized and especially if they feature cute color combos (pink/green, blue/brown, aqua/lime) and extra points for dots!

So, again, try your luck at beating me (you probably have a good chance, as I haven't won anything yet!) - just get here before 2/26.

Thursday, February 19, 2009

Spring shopping alert!

Oh, that evil Gymbo is at it again! They know exactly how to talk to me and reel me in.... They sent me THE. cutest. Easter outfits for Big Sister and G-man. Just check out this precious dress:
Mrs. Everything - we're going to have to get your sewing into full gear (sometime... when you have time for that... ha!) and try to come up with a recession-proof version!
And wouldn't little G-man look adorable in this.... minus the hat, of course, because by then he'll be helmet free and we'll want everyone to be able to stare at that perfectly symetrical, round noggin of his. Especially at the price it came. More on that later. maybe.

BUT.... something I'm definitely planning to buy, just as soon as I can get myself to a Target.... how super-duper cute are these nautical flip flops?
Ahhh, makes me want to ditch that upcoming mtg and head straight there now. Big Sister has on a tshirt with anchors today.... we're feeling the nautical vibe. And it has nothing to do with my desire to scoop up my family and leave town (and all our problems!) and jump on a boat to paradise. Well, maybe it does...

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Dallas Giveaway (and a quick C25K update!)

How cute is this, y'all? It's a fun PINK giveaway from a fellow Dallas blogger (although a far more seasoned one that me - I should take some notes!) Here are the details:

A PINK Cupcake Giveaway!
So what can you win?
500 Cupcakes - An enormous collection of cupcake recipes!
PINK Silicone Cupcake Trivet - A Sur La Table favorite of mine!
Hot PINK Cupcake Liners - As seen in my Valentine's Day Red Velvet Cupcakes!
PINK Sparkling Sugar - For fabulous, pink, sparkling cupcakes!

You have til noon on 2/24 to try to beat me out of this one!

And thanks so much for all the encouragement for today's jog. I needed it! OMG. That was the hardest thing I'v done since.... recovering from my 2nd c-section. Mr. Fix-It said he could hear me breathing from downstairs! But I did it! And now I'll need to decide.... whether I move on to wk 6 next wk or do a refresher course on wk 5.

C25k: The dreaded week 5

In January 2007, my (then new) friend Sasha shared with me the world that is couch to 5k (c25k, if you're hip!) Since then, I've been telling her (and anyone who will listen) how much it has changed my life.

At the time, Big Sister was 13 months old, and I was still carrying around 12 lbs of my baby weight. I was getting more depressed by the minute, when Sasha sent me the spreadsheet she created for c25k. (We're totally 2 peas in a pod because I create spreadsheets to keep everything organized... I guess I have my accountant father to blame for that!)

The c25k program takes you from any athletic level (like couch potato, for example) to jogging a 5k in 9 wks. Okay, realistically, it took me more like 15 wks to complete it... and mostly because I spent a month on wk 5. But by that summer, I was not only down to my pre-preggo weight, I was actually more toned than before baby and I felt great! I kept running until spring of 2008, when I hit 20 wks pg with baby G-man.

I have started back up.... and even though it's MUCH harder to find the time to jog with 2 crazy kiddos, than it was with 1.... I'm trying to just be proud of anything I'm able to do. That being said, tonight I have the third jog of week 5, which is 20 min of straight jogging

Please send me your strength.... your ipod play list (I like anything with a good beat, or any kind of rap/hip hop - sometimes those elicit lyrics help, somehow?! I know that sounds crazy).... anything that could help!

And if you want more info, let me know.... because Sasha started the revolution and we can help get you started!

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Giveaway with Southern Charm

Y'all know how much I love etsy. I tell people all the time that you can find ANYTHING you'd ever want there. And if you can't find it, it probably wasn't all that great anyway.

This giveaway comes from my very, very first follower! She has a cute shop on etsy and makes these darling signs! I'm going to win, but you can go to her blog between now and Feb 25th for a chance to beat me You'll get to customize the colors and text on a sign (I love, love custom stuff!)
Visit her blog:
Winning something like this is super semi-homemade, don't ya think?

My Big Fat Check

Yep, it's on it's way! And I usually use it at Starbucks for guilt-free caffeine! All of you know about this, right? If you love online shopping (and trust me, if you're a seriously time-starved working mommy like me, I know you couldn't live without it), then you simply must be on Ebates. If not, well... you're screwing yourself out of guilt-free coffee. Or shoes. Or pedis. Just go here and sign up. (But first email me and I'll send you my ebates referral email and we'll both earn an easy $5!)

Seriously, y'all, every little bit helps. My last check was over $25. Don't ya just love free shopping? Especially during a recession! ;)

Monday, February 16, 2009

Semi-homemade baby pics

Okay, I think I might have told you that (because of this damn recession), I decided to do semi-homemade 6 month pics for baby G-man instead of professional pics. (Big Sister and a super preggo me had some amazing professional pics done last summer by Kristie at, but we'll have to wait for spring for more!)

Anyway, I had a vision for these pics.... G-man in just a diaper and cute knit hat with ear flaps.... natural light on our back patio... those big baby blues... I found an amazing artist on etsy to custom knit the hat, exactly how I pictured (which makes it semi-homemade, yes?) for $11, including shipping. If you're ever in the market for something like this, check out Mighty Mama at:

She has tons of cute stuff for babies, toddlers, mommas! :) And she's really easy to work with, super accomodating.

Anyway, I can't find my PSE tutorial on how to edit to make his eyes "pop" with an intense blue. Anyone know how? I'd love to do that! Guess it shows that I've spent the last 3 years taking photos of a brown-eyed beauty! Now, I messed around a little (what an amateur!) with this photo, but I just need to find the time to edit the shoot we did yesterday (which - FINALLY! - included some pics of him in his baptismal outfit)...

Saturday, February 14, 2009

Semi-homemade Valentine's

I love holidays. I always have these grand schemes of what I'd like to do to celebrate them... just creative touches here and there. And about half the time, those actually come to be. (Okay, so half might be a little generous... didn't I mention I work full time?) ;)

These Valentine cards are by no means some of my best work, but I think they made the cut, considering what we've had going on. My main objectives: custom, cute and cheap. I grabbed these foam gift tags at Michael's when they were on sale for $4 (for 30). Each kiddo had their own Valentine and it was attached to the foam tag - then Big Sister's had a Jolly Rancher sucker (she picked).

Big Sister's:

Then I did 10 teacher/director gifts for under $5. These cello bags are from the $ section in Target... then I added a couple bags of candy.... then curly ribbon to tie on the Valentine pic. It's not much, but I think it looks like more than $.50! And I added a sweet (but short) handwritten note for the teachers.

And here's the Valentine card we sent out to immediate family.... I'm not crazy about how this one turned out (I should have made the picture of the kiddos sepia instead of blk/wht), but... I'll tell you this much. Baby G-man's helmet has his name on the front and what a pain! I'll have to black it out on every picture before I post it. Love that.

And what's next on the semi-homemade front? G-man's 6 month pics, which we'll hopefully take on the back porch on Sun afternoon. In nothing but a diaper and a homemade knit hat. Not made by me... but homemade by a lovely gal from etsy. (I heart etsy! More on that topic to come!)

And antibiotics save the day!

So, why didn't we think of it earlier? After debating with Mrs. Everything thru the afternoon... about whether or not they should bring their daughter P (Miss Priss) over for our v-day dinner... it occurs to her. P is actually on a stronger antibiotic than Big Sister. So, she's safe! Thank goodness....

So, let me back up.... the day started out with Mr. Fix-It coming home to the mini-muffins that Big Sister and I baked for him. Aww.... ;)

The kiddos got clothes for Valentine's from us (don't judge - we're in a recession, okay?) and toys from their grandmothers (so, see? It all works out!)
The Everythings came over and thank God the Everythings are who they are. Meaning 3 of us had just stepped out of baths/showers and the house looked just slightly better than chaotic. And for some reason, for them - and only them - it doesn't matter to me. As much. ;) And just look what Mrs. Everything brought me.
Awwww, just made my evening! I love, love tulips and I've been telling Mrs. E forever that maybe, just maybe, if I had one of those Aqua Globes from tv, I could keep a plant alive. Because I have the blackest of thumbs. I'll have to let y'all know how it goes...

Anyway, the Everythings brought yummy steaks and we threw in some baked potatoes and Big Sister and I's heart shaped cookie became a heart shaped brownie, due to a lack of oats for the oatmeal choc chip (dairy free) recipe we had in mind. (And fyi... I'll do a post sooner or later about living dairy free... but Ghiradelli makes the best dairy free brownie mix. You can't even tell!)
Happy Valentine's day to the Everythings and all of you!

See how much fun the daddies had? I just had to share! ;)

Strep throat - again. Or still. Whatever...

Yep! When I said Big Sister was confused last night and kept getting up... I didn't mention that she was also really hoarse (she's a hoarse little kiddo anyway). Well, by mid-morning, she was complaining that her mouth hurt, so when we looked at her throat... damn, it was bright red. So, off to the ped, who told us that, in fact, Big Sister does have strep throat again. Or still. She's 3 days off her antibiotics from the last strep outbreak.

So, on the negative side, it's not looking good for our sweet little Valentine's dinner with the Everythings. No one is more bummed than Big Sister, who cried herself to sleep over it at naptime.

But because I'm trying to be positive... I'm just thankful this happened on a Saturday. And that the doc cleared her for daycare on Monday. That's a pretty big deal....

So, Mrs. Everything, if you read this.... I'm bummed! Let's figure out when we CAN get together... and when we're going to go to that girly movie.

Friday, February 13, 2009

Migraine madness!

I had big, big plans for tonight, while Mr. Fix-It was gone and the kids were in bed. I was going to:
- Post pics of the semi-homemade valentines that Big Sister and G-man took t school today (along with the small teacher gifts)
- Whip up a banner/header for my blog so I can be more comfy 'coming out'
- Plan the menu for tomorrow night's Valentine dinner with the Everythings
- Download new music in hope of inspiring me to start getting that 3rd jog in every week

But this little headache is turning into a massive migraine.... and Big Sister has just come down the stairs AGAIN. (Seems she's confused that Mr. Fix-It is gone tonight and she's having a hard time sleeping.) So I'm off to put her to bed. Then put myself to bed. And I'll try to regroup in the morning!

Shopping for free...

It's my favorite kind of shopping!

So, as y'all know by now, we are indeed in a recession. And since you know that Mr. Fix-It is a home builder, you can imagine how that has impacted us. And I'm in retail so that's not exactly the best place to be right now either. But. Retail therapy is of the utmost importance to me, and even though I'm committed to cutting back... I still must shop. Occasionally. When I have good reason.

So, today the reason was that I had a free $10 to spend at JCP and a $50 gift card and 20% off coupon to Gap. I was committed to spending both on me, as lately I spend about 100% of my shopping $ on Big Sister and G-man. And I hadn't had a spare second at work to take a lunch break since... oh, around Halloween? So I headed off to the mall at lunch!

I love spring shopping! Gap had this pretty coral color.... I ended up getting this cute ruffle tank (and spent my 20% off coupon on it!)

The reason I had headed to Gap in the first place was for a navy sweater. Navy?! I almost cringe saying that - it brings up memories of middle school, of the navy blue/hunter green combo, of big hair.... but yes, navy will be so cute with my white capris, with a nautical top I have, with this dress that I'd totally wear to work with my brown boots if I had a navy sweater to wear over it... you get the idea. And guess what! It looks totally cute over that coral tank with the ruffle!

By the time I finished explaining to the Gap guy why I did not need a gap card (although I think I really might.. I'm going to think about it!), it was time to get back to the office. So, I grabbed a new outfit for G-man from JCP - isn't this cute?!

Those of you that know us, know our looooove of orange. I can't wait for it to warm up a bit and put G-man in this!!
Totally fun lunch! And even though G-man got a new outfit out of the deal, I still spent that Gap GC on MYSELF. It's an impressive step...

Tonight - after the kiddos are in bed - I'll try to get on and post the semi-homemade valentine's that I finished up last night (after those few drinks!)

Thursday, February 12, 2009

Stay tuned...

I'm finishing up Big Sister and G-man's semi-homemade valentines tonight and I'll put up pics as soon as I can. They're not nearly exciting as the gifts they did for Christmas, but I'm busy and we all just have to deal with that.

Busy? What? Well, it's partly due to the fact that I'm going to dinner tonight with 2 old friends. This is exciting because:

1. They serve margaritas there
2. I need adult time and miss these girls!
3. This dinner (which was originally to get together for the holidays - as in Christmas!!) has been reschedule no fewer than 3 times. And each of those times was my fault.
- A work deadline...
- Then one of those rare snow/ice days we get in TX which causes schools/daycares to close...
- And most recently, we were going to go on the night that Big Sister took that nasty fall at school and bit thru her lip. I ended up at the after-hours clinic instead of sipping a margarita.

But I'll make up for all of that tonight... those valentines might end up looking pretty interesting...

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

A high tech giveaway!

So, being the first with new technology is not something that I'm accused of very often. Again, not that I don't WANT to be hip and cool.... it's just that it never makes the top of my priority list (especially now that we're in a recession!!)

To have something wireless in our home office... that would be a BIG step! So, again, this is mine to win, but I'm sharing with y'all...

Coming out....

Does anyone ever truly feel like they're ready to come out of the blogging closet? I mean, I have some friends that are amazing bloggers and surely something has been rubbing off on me all this time. Even still....

But if I'm coming out, does that mean we get to throw a Coming Out Party? Hmmm, something to think about...

Someone call the cleaning lady!

And get her here tonight! Because my house is beyond out of control. Wait, I just called me and I'm busy tonight....

Damn, this recession is killing me. You'd think with all the horrible layoffs, people would be lining up at my door wanting to clean my house for practically free. But I looked out there this morning and no one was there.

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

A little Hanky Panky never hurt anyone...

How fun is this give away? And right before "sweetie heart day," as Big Sister called it this morning. Awwww......

You can enter as long as you don't win them - they're mine!

Another give away! (Even though this blog is still a secret!)

Okay, so I haven't 'come out' in the blogging world, but... just in case... look at this cute giveaway from one of my online mommy friends! And uh... tell them I sent ya, of course!

"Sis" and "ter"

LOL! That's how Big Sister learned to say "sister" instead of "sTister!"

My sister totally made my day (week?!) last week. She sent me one of those cute square hallmark cards.... it has kids with raincoats on, holding hands and carrying lunch boxes. I tried to find it, but this pic gives you the gist....

Anyway, on the inside, it says something super appropriate to the humor my sis and I have:

We'll be fine as long as we've got each other --
and plenty of snacks!

And in it, she said some sweet, encouraging things and included a giftcard to Sonic (man, I have an addiction to vanilla diet cokes during happy hour! It's a serious problem... Hi, I'm Elaine and I love sonic.)

Isn't that the best? Funny thing is.... my shit hit the fan on Sunday, so she sent that on Monday.... and hers hit the fan on Tuesday and I emailed her, telling her I wanted to help and what could I do? Send a sonic gift card? And funny, one was on the way to me.

And that's why I hope Big Sister gets a little sister someday... (oh, and I ended up sending her a piece of cheesecake from The Factory!!)

Monday, February 9, 2009

Why don't Grandmas get it?

That we don't need any more toys!!!!!! That when I say, why don't you buy the kiddos some clothes for Valentine's day, they don't need more toys.... that I mean it!
Instead, Big Sister comes home from a trip to the store with Magaw, and she's got this:

Agh! Too bad Big Sister will soon have to play with it nekkid!

Sunday, February 8, 2009

The Reader

Okay, so when you only go to the movies 2-3 times a year, there's all this pressure for the movie to be really good. And for us, that usually means an Oscar-nominated is a big, fat waste of time. Case in point:

So, my parents were in town from OK for the weekend, and we got the rare opportunity for a free babysitter! (We're in a recession, remember, people?) So, off we head to the movies... instead of going to the one near us, we had to go to the one in the mall, because we had cashed in credit card rewards for AMC movie tickets (again, the effects of the damn recession). The mall is annoying because the traffic is bad and I get really scared about Big Sister ever becoming a teenager.... the girls wear THE shortest skirts and I can't describe to you the teenage makeout sessions. Ewww....

We were going to see Taken, a thriller/mystery about a kidnapping with that girl Shannon from "Lost".... but we couldn't use our 'reward' tickets on it, so we had to pick a movie starting at the same time that was available to us.... We'd both heard of The Reader, it's about the war in Germany, concentration camps, etc... it's nominated for awards, I like Kate Winslet.... I FELL ASLEEP, if that tells you anything. Granted, I'm beyond exhausted lately, but 30 min in, I was already fighting a nap. It was okay.... I'm just saying.... it made me contemplate just snoozing for 2 (un-interrupted!) hours... The last movie we saw was Madagascar 2 with Big Sister, and I liked it better. What has happened to me?
I'll be back later to show you the semi-homemade Valentine's I'm going to whip up for Big Sister and G-man's classes at school...

Saturday, February 7, 2009

'Roid Rage!

And that's how G-man rolls on steriods.... :(
He's 6 months old and has been up since 4:45am!
RSV stinks - Send help!

Friday, February 6, 2009

Semi-Homemade Birthday Party

So, I told you that I like to throw really fun, creative parties. And I've been fairly capable of that in the short years I've been a mom. But... then came this year, with the big family Christmas at OUR house, the run of illness including RSV, the still-adjusting-to-2-kiddos-plus-2-full-time-careers... the list goes on. Long story short, we got to January without a party planned for Big Sister.... and her birthday was Dec 29. Damnit.

Don't get me wrong, we did the family thing while everyone was here for Christmas... but it wasn't the creative kind of party I like to throw. It was a BBQ dinner after G-man's baptism, with balloons and a Tink cake (eek - a character! How did this happen?!) Oh, and some rock band with Mr. Fix-It and Uncle Frank:

But, in my mind, a party isn't a party unless there's some type of theme and everything - invites, cake, food, decor, everything! - ties back to it. I felt like I'd run out of time and I can't describe to you the sadness I felt that I'd let down my precious 3 year old (okay, so I don't think she even noticed, but that's the kind of irrationality that comes with being a mom, right?)

I tossed around the idea of doing what everyone else in her preschool class was doing - gym/bounce house-type parties.... the ease of it all was very tempting... but it was going to be hard to be as creative as I wanted. In the end, Mrs. Everything had the brilliant idea that the 4 of us and the 3 of them would load up and go to Great Wolf Lodge - a mini vacation.

I immediately got started on a safari/camping theme... Okay, so I only needed one invite, BUT.... in my mind, the invite would make it a 'real' party, so I whipped one up quickly late on a Fri night. Here it is:

Instead of a cake, I made cupcakes with oreo 'dirt' and gummy worms crawling out.... (Believe it or not, it was entirely dairy-free! Duncan Hines cake mixes are dairy free. But even more unbelieveable is that frosting can be dairy free and so are oreos!! Let's just not think about how or why that's possible...

We had so much fun! We got there on Fri, had dinner, got in the pool and did the baby slides... they kiddos played until 9pm, then time for storytime at the bell tower, and then the infamous cupcakes at 10pm!! Troopers! The next morning, we headed back to the waterpark and Big Sister rode all the rides (even some she wasn't tall enough for!), did the lazy river, and ate way more Oreos than a kiddo ever should. Unless it's their birthday. Super fun!

And that's how I did just enough to give her a creative, but not entirely time consuming, bday party.... semi-homemade.

And people, bare with me as my pics aren't in the order I wish they were... this damn blogging, I knew I didn't have time to figure it out....
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