Charlie loves Target.
Charlie, who recently celebrated her 3rd birthday, wasn’t totally sold on her mom’s idea for a Trolls theme for the big day.
Her choice? Target. And her mom, Emily, made it happen.
Lowell turns 2 tomorrow.
If that surprises you, know that it surprises me more. So much so that I…. didn’t even see it coming?
Like, 3 days ago, I realized it was this week.
There will be no party, just a small dinner with our family and another family, who happens to have a little boy Lowell’s age. They’ve known each other since they were born. They are tiny besties.
So we shall call it an “intimate affair” and we will have pizza, and beer, and sippy cups of juice, and I think I will make a cake.
Maybe there will be balloons. Just depends on how long it takes me to make the cake tomorrow.
2 is a weird birthday, anyway. 1st birthday parties are for the grownups in this family. They are the WE SURVIVED celebrations. I go all out for them. By the time they turn 3, they have friends they can name off.
2? I mean, I don’t think they really recognize that they aren’t the only toddler on the planet. Except for tiny besties, and only because their moms get together for coffee or wine playdates often.
All that is to say that tomorrow this guy turns 2, and I nearly almost let it slip past.
But there will be a celebration. And there will be cake. And it may involve choo choos and a tractor and some Oreo cookie dirt. It may very well look hilariously horrific. So Friday’s post might be my contribution to Cake Wrecks.
I bought my first pair of snow boots ever last month, right after we booked a cabin in Tahoe. Because Tahoe and snow boots, right? If not now, when?
It began as a trip to San Francisco to Dad 2.0, and I was so excited to bring Scott with me for his first official blogging conference. A few months ago we decided to tack on a few days and a visit to Napa/Sonoma. Then we got the opportunity to stay at a friend’s cabin in Tahoe, so we added a couple more days.
We left on February 18th, and got home 8 days later. We left the kids at our house with my saint of a mother.
Somewhere in the middle of all that, I turned 34.
And then we drove up to the Muir Woods. When we parked, there was this little spot off to the side of the parking lot, and I was like, “You know what? I want a picture with my cake. Yeah. It’s my birthday and I want to take pictures in a forest with a cake.“ So I did.
Speaking of Stitch Fix, it’s basically all I wore the entire week. So nice to reach into my closet and have clothes I actually LOVE to choose from.
Of course, we didn’t walk through the whole forrest with my cake. Mostly because there’s no way I was going to risk something happening to my precious. Certainly not because I was above taking more pictures in a forest with a cake.
We dropped it off at the car and got in a quick photo walk before sunset.
I really wanted to get some great shots to hang in the new house, so I was that crazy person taking pictures of every. thing. And no children. Such a change for me! The subjects totally cooperated.
That evening, we had dinner at the Oxbow market in Napa, which I’m obsessed with, and we stumbled upon the Napa Valley Distillery where we had a life-changing experience. WHOLE separate post about THAT (and video!) tomorrow!
Okay, so this whole time, from the drive out of San Francisco, we were cruising in our red Charger, which was like Scott’s teenage dream come true. It wasn’t planned. I booked us for a sensible Altima or similar, but they were out of the sensible cars and offered us a “free” upgrade (that wound up costing us $10 more in insurance/day, but whatever). Not the most practical vehicle for driving up the mountains and into Tahoe, but the good news is there was NO snow.
Which, of course because I bought brand new snow boots just for this trip. Sorry Tahoe!
Are you cringing at the cheese factor here? Ha!
Scott told me he had to take a picture in front of the red hot rod with his “hot girl” on the hood or his 17 year old self would be so disappointed. This is what grown people do when they have free time, I guess. Free time and wine and gin.
We are so easily amused.
Tahoe was a real jackpot for pictures. There was an amazing view just a short walk from our cabin.
I got to play around with my Lensbaby Spark for the first time, and was so happy with my very novice results.
I think I came away with plenty to print and hang.
Including this image of Venus and Mars over the tree line- a request from Scott.
We did go up to Northstar to walk around the ski village and then had a drink at the Ritz while watching people ski by. That and the gondola ride was as close as we needed to get to actual skiing this time, though I will say it looks like something that might be fun to try if we have more time to visit again.
And plus there was snow up there, so I felt very prepared with my snow boots.
Then we came back to Dallas and received 3 inches of snow, so I now call the snow boot purchase “totally justified.”
Look out, life! I’m 34 and now the proud, prepared owner of snow boots.
Just got done processing these pics from the mini-birthday celebration we had for my mom right before I left for Blogher. I figured they deserved a post of their own.
Her birthday was earlier in the month, and I’d just planned to have the kids give her her gift when she got here to watch them (since Scott was out of town the same time I was), but Kendall was insistent that there be birthday cake. We couldn’t simply just give her a birthday present without cake! Leyna, obviously, agreed with his brilliant plan.
Yesterday, he was born.
Today, he is 3.
Tomorrow, he will be 13, and no longer whisper to me as his eyelids get heavy in the dark of his room, “Mommy, stay. I just want to snuggle with you.”
He won’t ask, “Mommy? Are you a princess?” when he sees me try on a new dress.
He won’t exclaim, “You’re having an Idea Emergency!” when he hears me swear at the stroller that won’t fold so I can shove it back in the car.
Tomorrow he will grow up, finally get to run off with those “fwiends!”
But today, he is 3. And he’s still all mine.
(Marking this one as uncategorized because I haven’t come up with a category to replace the Terrific Terrorist Twos.)
Howdy! Let me first just apologize for all the issues around here lately. My blog was crashing every time I put up a new post because of the traffic. Sort of a good problem to have, I guess, but an annoying one, nonetheless. So the super sweet Blogarista has been helping me switch it over and we’ve had a few hiccups. Hopefully it’s all smoothed out now and this place loads much faster for you all. Thanks for hanging in there with me.
Also? I’m 30.
I said goodbye to my 20s over the weekend while I chilled with family and friends and friends who are like family in Austin. I also watched Scott complete his 3rd marathon… and secretly wished I was running for just a brief moment. (Think I’ll try for Chicago in 2012!)
I fulfilled a mommy fantasy of being cutesy matchy matchy with my daughter when Leyna and I wore our coordinating outfits to my birthday dinner. She wore a pillowcase dress and bloomers (tutorials linked) with fabric from City Craft. I also crocheted a headband for her and made a fabric rosette to stick on it. Then I made a headband and a broach for myself with a few fabric rosettes (made from this tutorial).
I planned to write a deep, introspective post about this new decade of my life, but it turns out I really don’t have the time to do a lot of deep thinking about turning 30 because I’m too busy accomplishing nothing. Never in my life have I really, truly understood the phrase “spinning my wheels” like I do right now.
Basically the story of my life right now is working hard to achieve nothing.
Today it took us 1 hour 15 minutes to get out of the house just to walk a mile to the park. And I didn’t even manage to put on a drop of makeup or brush my hair.
The morning went something like this:
11:00 I finally get my teeth brushed and decide we should take a walk to the park.
11:15 Leyna’s diaper is changed, must now get Kendall to go potty.
11:30 Kendall is STILL on the toilet (because he is already very much like a man and really enjoys his bathroom time).
11:45 Kendall is done, but now Leyna is screaming because she’s hungry.
12:00 Leyna’s done eating, but now screaming because she’s tired and wants me to rock her to sleep.
12:05 Leyna is temporarily soothed by the swing while I pack snacks for the walk.
12:07 Leyna is screaming again because I’ve now strapped her in the stationary stroller and she is not in a state of motion.
12:09 Kendall is in timeout for, well, annoying the shit out of me (incessant pleas for snacks coupled with defiance and bossiness).
12:11 Leyna is still screaming, Kendall is crying in timeout, I’m fantasizing of vacations to places where no children exist and people bring me drinks.
12:13 Kendall is strapped in to the stroller alongside Leyna, and now I’m the one who has to go pee. I close the door and relish the fact that they are both tied to a stroller with the brake on at the other side of the house perhaps just a little too much. Silence.
12:15 We’re off!
So it pretty much took me 75 minutes to do something that would take most people 5- LEAVE THE HOUSE.
Having a second baby doesn’t make everything take twice as long, it makes it take 15 times as long, apparently.
Which means I can’t possibly find the time to think about turning 30 and share all my infinite wisdom that comes from 30 years on this earth with you all because I would be turning 40 by the time I’m done. And that? I’m pretty sure is how the rest of my life is going to go. Me not having time to think about time because I’m too busy not getting ANYTHING done.
I’m exhausted just thinking about it.
Kendall is 2 and nearly 10 months, Leyna is 8 weeks, and I’m THIRTY!
I began planning Kendall’s 2nd birthday party a couple months ago when he learned the word “house.” Not as in the “house” we live in, but like BOUNCE “house.” He begs me to go to the “house” every day. I’ve been taking him to a local Pump It Up Jr. almost every week since last summer, and it’s the perfect, nearly 100% toddler proofed play escape. He doesn’t so much bounce in the bounce house as he does run around, try to play with the blowers, and fight with other kids for the lone Cozy Coupe, but he still loves it. And lately he’s been doing a lot of bouncing and hopping and, ultimately, falling at home, so the bounce house seemed like a logical place to confine him and a multitude of toddlers and exhausted parents for his party (and you can see why the huge ass trampoline seemed like a good idea at the time, too). Screw the park this year. The park is too much freaking work. I don’t have the energy to host a party and hover below my child as he peers precariously over the side of a metal slide.
The invitations I found at TinyPrints.com were PERFECT! The colors matched the decor already provided by PIU Jr. and I loved how playful they are.
I honestly didn’t put too much effort into this party, but I still think it turned out great. I owe a lot to the excellent staff at Pump It Up Jr. Everything went very smoothly. They helped set up and we didn’t even have to clean up. I tell you, I was crazy to do it all on our own at the park last year. I also loved the peace of mind that came from knowing it didn’t matter if it rained. Last year I thought we’d have to abandon the party altogether to start building an ark, and the day of the party we ended up with a puddle the size of a small lake in the middle of the park pavilion.
Kendall was dying to get inside the entire 15 minutes before the party started. It was everything we could do to keep him from breaking in. Oh, and how amazing is that shirt?! CafePress.com totally hooked us up with that, and you’ll want to stay tuned because I’m going to announce a sweet little giveaway at the bottom of this post.
I wish I had more pictures to document the fun, but trying to capture toddlers on film is about as challenging as photographing the Loch Ness Monster. All I’ve got are blurs and shadows of what may or may not be a kid running by.
I did manage to snag this beauty at the end of the bouncing portion, though. I will love it and cherish it and use it’s powers possibly for evil when Kendall is a teenager.
He is always digging around in there these days. I don’t know what to do to make him stop. He thinks it hilarious, no matter how I react. And, “You’re going to get made fun of for that!” just doesn’t seem to make sense to him yet.
After the bouncing came to an end, we headed to the party room, which was just fantastic. I didn’t have to spend any money on table cloths or fancy plates and cups. The room was cute as-is, and I had leftover plates from last year. They provided cutlery and napkins. I did bring the banner I made for Kendall’s birthday last year. I hope to hang it every year until he voices his disgust for it.
I also reused the homemade cupcake stand from last year. (I hope to get a tutorial up for that soon. It’s super easy and inexpensive.) And, running with the ball theme from the invites, I made Oreo Truffle Balls, dipped in Wilton colored candy melts to make red, green and yellow balls to sit on top of the cupcakes, which were a Cake Mix Doctor recipe for red-velvet with Bakerella cream cheese frosting. Not entirely homemade, and not entirely aesthetically pleasing, but they were a huge hit, especially with the birthday boy.
The favors were one of the best parts of the party. BornFree hooked me up with enough of their newly released, BPA free Twist n Pop straw cups for all the kids! I had them waiting, full of ice water, next to their pizza when they filed in. A HUGE thanks to BornFree. They were such a hit.
So after all of that, when the herd of toddlers cleared the room and the last Oreo ball was demolished, we were left with nothing but a 2 year old. Yay us for 2 whole years as parents!
I know you stuck around to the end of the post because you really loved seeing all my terribly grainy and blurry pictures (I keep telling my husband that grown up bloggers have MUCH nicer cameras), not at all to hear about the kick ass giveaway CafePress.com is hosting, right? But hey, you’re here anyway, so I might as well tell you about it. So, if you don’t know already, you can get TONS of cool personalized gifts at CafePress. They hooked me up with an organic cotton t-shirt for myself and Kendall, and I got to peruse through all the fantastic designs to find the two that suited us the best.
Kendall’s “Danger, 2 year old” shirt could not be more appropriate since he’s quite the running wrecking ball these days, and I think “Keep Calm And Carry On” should be every toddler mom’s mantra. The quality of the shirts is excellent (American Apparel), but I will say they run super small. Kendall’s rocking a 4T and I’m in a large. That’s a size up from what we both normally wear.
Cafe Press is giving away an organic kid’s shirt and organic adult shirt (total value approx. $52) to one lucky commenter. You can choose from any of the designs they have. Nothing special you have to do here, just comment below. I’ll draw a random winner next Monday, May 10th.
Thanks for sticking around for all the birthday fun!
Contest is closed! Winner is comment #34, as chose by Random.org. Congrats, Jill!
So… I turned 29 over the weekend. I still can’t believe it. One year left of my twenties, that’s it! I spent a little time reflecting on where I’m at in life, and wondering if the 19 year old me would approve, but then I quit that when I remembered that the 19 year old me had a deep love for Kid Rock and the Dixie Chicks and wore an orange cowgirl hat anytime she went out to party, which was quite often.
Sure, I may not be as “successful”, career-wise, as the 19 year old me would have hoped, but I can honestly sit here and tell you all I am HAPPY, 110% happy, and that’s not something that even the 25 year old, career-driven me, who had quite the quarter-life crisis, could say.
But, let me not digress and turn this into a post all about how far I’ve come in 29 years or how I’m a little anxious about this next year coming and going, leaving me no choice but to turn 30. No, what I really want to talk about is how HORRIFIED and confused I am by clothes right now.
I can’t say that I’ve ever been super stylish, but I like to think I’ve been able to pull off some snazzy looks in my lifetime. The orange cowgirl hat, after all, was quite the eye-catcher and very “Coyote Ugly” back in 2000. Since becoming a stay at home mom, I’ve obviously had to ditch the pretty numbers from Banana Republic and Ann Taylor, which took me through my days full of meetings and happy hours, in favor of more toddler and budget friendly apparel. That usually means I spend my days in jeans, a fitted shirt, some flats (or sometimes my good ol’ Skechers slip ons), and a fun accessory, like a scarf. Yup. That’s pretty much my SAHM uniform.
Well, my incredibly sweet husband, who happens to be equal parts frugal and fashion clueless, bought me some clothes for my birthday. It was such a sweet gesture, and luckily he understood when I told him I’d have to take it all back and try to find some stuff that would be more “practical” for me to wear (read- fit me, not show my bra straps, not covered in sequins). I returned to New York & Company the next day, ready to hunt down some new, trendy clothes. I searched and searched, picked and pulled from the racks, turned my head to the side, then back, squinched my eyes and tried to figure out what I was looking at.
None of it made any sense to me.
So leggings are in now, yes? And I’m to pair them with a clingy, long, what appears to be night shirt? And then what? I put a belt over it? Is it just me, or is this an outfit I would have put together at the age of 2 after ransacking my mom and dad’s closet?
And you want me to wear brown boots with my black leggings? This is going against every rule of fashion I’ve committed to memory.
Tie dye and acid wash are back? And tapered leg pants with pleated fronts? I mean, isn’t that exactly what we have all been mocking for the past 15 years? Are you telling me I need a mullet now? Or maybe just a rat tail? Big bangs?
I gave up, bought a plain purple shirt and some clearance flip flops (which I will most likely return because, as my husband said, “ANOTHER pair of flip flops?”), and headed to Target later that day. Not that Target is the Mecca of fashion, but I’ve scored some cute stuff there recently, mainly just more plain fitted tees. I meandered into the trendy Juniors section, hoping to step a bit out of my comfort zone, when my sister and I ran across this number.
Is this just a sign that I’m getting old? Am I physically incapable of seeing clothes for what they are now and officially stuck in my comfortable, plain rut? Is this the first sign that I’m thisclose to giving up and turning into the cat shirt lady??
Kendall is nearly 22 months old and I’m 29 years old and 2 days.