Friday, February 27, 2009

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Life & Times of Stella

Well, since I haven't been posting - I thought I'd give you something else to read. Check out this great post by my friend Amber over at The Life and Times of Stella.

She's recently had to redo her resume so it got her to thinking about what her mom resume would include - check out the true and funny results here.

I hope you enjoy it as much as I did.

Monday, February 16, 2009

Happy Birthday Monkey's Daddy

Well today I made my first ever "scratch" cake for M's birthday AND it was vegan! I was very nervous but only called A (my neighborhood baking expert) once - well, it would have been twice but she wasn't home the second time so I decided to wing it. All in all this cake is delicious and moist and the glaze is very yummy. The only drawback was the cake fell a bit in the middle - but I wasn't out to impress M with the look of the cake (I knew Monkey would be doing the final decoration anyway - no Martha Stewart cakes in this house!) and the taste made up for the droopiness. You can get the recipe at Real Simple.

Picture 1: Monkey sneaking a bite
Picture 2: The full droop - looks a bit like red blood cell!
Picture 3: The glaze - yum!
Picture 4: Glazed cake (didn't wait until it was fully cool as we had to go to dinner and I wanted it to be "dry" by the time we got back! - worked fine
Picture 5: Monkey decorating with strawberries
Picture 6: Finished cake with Monkey stealing yet another taste

Saturday, February 14, 2009

Chemical Wedding

Okay, first off I love the name . . . and I love these handbags! Check them out for yourself here. A few teasers below!

Valentines for 20

How to make 20 valentine's (and include your child).

Supplies needed:

1-2 pieces of large paper (easel sized) - we used one
Paint, markers, crayons, etc. (we used red paint mixed with silver glitter)
Cardstock or scraps in color of your choosing
Assorted stamps/stamp pad
Digital photo of your child
Photo Paper

1) Encourage your child to make a big painting or drawing

2) Wait for said child to fall asleep

3) Using a heart template trace 21 hearts on back of artwork, madly cut them out before child wakes up. I would definitely talk about this prior to doing it - I had prepared Monkey and we still had a little issue.

4) Find a digital image of your child (preferably not blurry - this may take a while) and crop for a close-up.

5) Print a contact sheet of the image (my printer does up to 35 small pictures per sheet with the name of the photo - so if your printer has this option remember to change the name of the jpg before printing (I changed to "XOXO, Monkey" & "Love, Monkey" or you can print out larger pics - whatever floats your boat (I was low on printer ink and paper so a contact sheet was perfect!)

6) Cut up 20 of the pictures - use the rest to seal envelopes and send to the grandparents, etc.. I will definitely be creating more of these for birthday cards, etc.

7) Use scrap paper or cut up cardstock (I chose to make the valentines 4 1/4 x 5 1/2 so I could get 4 per page. Cut out 21 rectangles.

8) Gather some heart stamps together.

9) Wait for child to wake up. Soothe child after he cries, "PUT IT BACK! PUT IT BACK TOGETHER!" tell him he can cut up other paper and glue it on - with glitter glue!!! You can mix the glitter!!!. Explain you have picked out some special stamps for him to use. Once child opens eyes to see stamps, carry quieted child and art supplies downstairs.

10) Give glue stick, hearts & rectangles to child - let him go wild.

11) Decide maybe it would be better for him to stamp - give him stamps and WASHABLE ink

12) Have him position hearts on valentines and then glue on a picture.

Voila! Valentines for 20

I used a punch to round the corners of the cards and Monkey helped. His favorite parts of this project (after the initial painting) were the glue stick and emptying the punch.

Friday, February 13, 2009


Check out my latest pick "Where Everybody Knows Your Name". Don't forget to sign up for the newsletter :) they often have contests - and before I was a writer I won - so you can too!

Saturday, February 7, 2009

The Master Negotiator - Guest Post

Well, since I haven't been blogging much (my resolutions are always doomed!) I thought I would share a story from my friend Dana. She's a great mom and a great storyteller - enjoy the guest post!

G (Age 3) is the master negotiator in our house. I'm considering equipping him with a tape measure and a cell phone and setting him loose on all my tough contracts. He has a roundabout way of approaching what he wants that should earn him a Machiavelli Jr. prize.

At 2 am I hear the (not so quiet) cry from across the hall, "Bombee" (his nose is hopelessly clogged with snot from his most recent cold) and I know from experience that he won't quiet down until I respond. "Bombee, I deed somefing," he says as I walk into his room. And even though I know that I shouldn't encourage him, I ask anyway, "What do you need?" I'm really hoping it's not going to be his usual request to discuss the nature of power tools, vacuum cleaners and furnaces. It's tough for me to hold up my half of that conversation.

"Weeellll," there is a long pause and I don't know it yet, but this is where he is setting up the mark. "I deed by weebote condroll." I'm tempted to ask why, but frankly I'm relieved it's something I can actually do. Last week he urgently called me into his room at 1 am to tell me that "sometimes spiders chase people." I was stumped by that one because frankly, I couldn't have agreed more. But my husband has told me (repeatedly) that I'm not allowed to agree with him.

Did I see that this request for a "retired" remote control was a lead-in to his real agenda? No. The kid is 10 steps ahead of me.

I hand him a defunct VCR remote that is sitting on his bookshelf. He thanks me sweetly (I should have been suspicious) and I'm feeling pretty confident that I might get to go back to sleep.

G then kicks back on his pillows and points the remote at the wall opposite his crib. "This is for my TV," he says pushing several buttons with his thumb.

I know it's late and my feet are frozen but I can't keep myself from stating the obvious, "you don't have a TV in here."

"My imaginary TV Mommy."

Oh, well that's OK then, he can watch all the pretend TV he wants, "Great, have fun then."

I'm halfway to the door when he says, "There's a problem with this TV Mommy. It doesn't play the Mickey Mouse Club or Little Einsteins." I'm thinking this is a pretty worthless imaginary TV if it doesn't play his favorite shows, but I manage to keep that comment to myself. "Wow, that's too bad. Goodnight!" and I head for the door again.

"Only the TV in Mommy and Daddy's room plays Mickey Mouse Club and Little Einsteins," he says slyly. There's no TV in our room either, but now I get it. This is all about him having a cold and not wanting to sleep by himself. But the kid is a terrible pillow hog and kicks all night long so I'm not giving in.

"Well, the pretend TV in our room is Daddy's TV and all it plays is Seahawks home games and Formula One Racing." And with that I say goodnight and shut the door behind me.

Ha! I may be perpetually sleep-deprived, but I can still keep up with a 3 1/2 year old. I figure I have about six more months before he can outsmart me.