Tuesday, May 14, 2013

regularly scheduled programming

Ya'll, I have been busting my hump trying to get ready for our yard sale this weekend. I've got lots of great posts planned, but it's just not happening today. I'll get my hiney in gear tomorrow and get back to our regularly scheduled programming.

Have a great Tuesday!!

Monday, May 13, 2013

Weekend Recap

What a great weekend! On Friday, I had a hard time sleeping, so I ended up going for a sunrise run. It was so beautiful and I inspirational, I wish I could get up that early every day!

My hubs was off work Friday, so we spent the day doing little chores around the house. I got a patio set for Mother's day, so he put that together and we spent the afternoon on the patio, playing in the baby pool with D.

Saturday was spent getting things ready for our yard sale...tons of work, but I am SO excited to get rid of some of this stuff! An organized home is a happy home :) 

Sunday, of course, was my first Mother's day! Hubs gave me the best gift by getting up with D and letting me catch up on some much needed sleep. A rested mommy is a happy mommy! My own mommy was moving across the country, so I didn't get to talk to her much, but I've got a special present on it's way for her!

It was also our dating anniversary...together 8 years! We left D with a babysitter for the first time and went out to celebrate. It wasn't as nervewracking as I expected, and we were only gone about 2 hours. It was so great to spend some quality time with Hubs and recharge our batteries a bit.

Weekends like this make me realize how blessed my life is :) Things may not be perfect, but I've never been happier and I wouldn't change a thing!

How was your weekend?

Friday, May 10, 2013

high five, baby

A short post today, because my husband is off work, it's a beautiful 85 degrees, and we are spending the whole day together! That's enough of a high five for me :)

And a super high five to Annamarie R., winner of the Tadpole Togs store credit giveaway! Kelly will contact you directly :)

Also, a huge apology for the glitch with the comments section. I've got it fixed, so hopefully it won't happen again!

I hope you all have a wonderful weekend!

Thursday, May 9, 2013

a little more bookworm

I feel as though lately, this blog has been quite a bit of baby and not so much bookworm. Obviously, D demands much more attention than the novel currently sitting on my nightstand, but I do wish I could carve out a little more time to read. If only I had started this blog while I was pregnant... I would have had a new book review for you every 2 days! 

My last trip to the library was so unsuccessful. I checked out 3 books, as opposed to my usual 7, and only read one of them. I cannot tell you the last time that happened. I kept holding out hope that I would find some time to read the other 2, but then the due date came and went, and I ended up owing the library a whopping $4 in late fees for books I didn't even read. Lame sauce.

This time, I checked out a much more manageable 2 books, and started with this:

Have you ever read a book that just makes you downright angry? I got through Chapter 1 of this book, and threw it across the room in disgust.

 It. is. AWFUL.

 I picked it up because it's about an art dealer, and supposed to be a mystery of sorts, but oh my gosh I feel dumber just having read those first 30 pages. The author writes like you are literally the stupidest person in the world, and every single detail needs to be spelled out for you. I was offended. 

Don't take my word for it, though. Here's a little excerpt:

Now turning to his wife, Marius shook his head and chided lightly, "I told you how beautiful you looked, but you didn't believe me. Now that you've just witnessed Malcolm's stunned reaction, you must know I'm right." 

"I did believe you," she protested, slipping her arm through his, leaning against him. "You're always right."

Clearing his throat, Malcolm interjected, "It's great to be here, and thanks for having me, but now I think I'd better move on, so you can greet your other guests. See you later."

Marius nodded, immediately turned around, and stretched out his hand to welcome some of the newly arriving guests streaming through the door. Malcolm slipped away. [....]

Actually it was Annette's party this evening. She had long planned it for Marius's sixtieth  and she had put a lot of time and effort into it. Just the way Marius had taught her. That was his way. He tended to be a teacher by nature."

Ugh. Just typing that made me angry. 

It's hard to pinpoint what it is, exactly, that makes a book bad. If I had to put my finger on it, especially in this excerpt, it's that everything is laid out for you. There's no reader inference, the author controls your every thought. You aren't able to imagine the characters, or the story unfolding, because the dialogue is too stiff, too contrived. And the characters are entirely too perfect for my taste.

It is a very rare occurrence that I don't finish a book, because I always need to know how it ends, but I cannot even fathom trying to finish this sucker. Ick.

I moved onto library book number 2, called "The Devil in Silver" by Victor Lavalle. I'm only a few chapters in, but sooo much better already. It's about a man who is involuntarily committed to a mental institution, where an actual devil walks the halls at night, feeding on the inmates. Creepyyyy, but I am totally intrigued. 

Look for a review soon!

What have you been reading?

PS. Don't forget to enter to win $20 store credit from Tadpole Tog's Etsy shop! Just like her Facebook page and leave a comment here stating that you did so! The giveaway ends Friday, so hurry scurry!!

Wednesday, May 8, 2013

guest post & a GIVEAWAY!

Hey everyone, Ashley here. I am so excited to introduce you to Kelly, the woman behind Tadpole Togs. She does really adorable crochet toys and baby clothes, and today she is giving away a $20 credit to her Etsy Shop! Her items are super affordable, so you can get lots of cool stuff! All you need to do to enter is visit Tadpole Togs Facebook page, like the page, then leave a comment on the blog post saying that you did so! A winner will be chosen randomly on Friday. Be sure to leave your email address so we can contact you to let you know you've won!!

Now, I'll let Kelly take it from here!

When I was about 3, I was on the phone with my Nanny (my mother’s mother). I was trying to tell her a story and getting very frustrated. Finally, I gave up. “I can’t tell it right,” I said, “you can’t see my hands.”
Nan understood completely. After all, her hands were never still, either. She was always crocheting, knitting, or sewing; making stained glass, or decoupage; tending the forest of plants that filled her window, or cooking, or cleaning. And yes, as the daughter of Italian immigrants, talking with her hands!

Along with the hand gestures, I inherited a little bit of Nan’s creativity and craftiness. Knitting requires too much coordination, and stained glass too much health insurance (at least the way I would do it.) I have my own forest of plants, and I’m not a bad cook. We won’t get into my cleaning skills, such as they aren’t. And although I learned how to crochet a long time ago, it wasn’t until recently that I became passionate about it.
See, there was no need to be while Nan was around. If you told her someone was having a baby, she’d have a layette set ready for them the next time you saw her. Your bedspread looking a little shabby? There would be a new one in your favorite color under the tree next Christmas. The tree that was decorated with the most beautiful, delicate crochet angels that she, of course, had made. Honestly, it was intimidating.
After Nan passed away, I felt sad that the new mothers in our family wouldn’t be able to bring their babies home in an outfit Nan had made. Those babies wouldn’t play outside in one of her snowsuits, or snuggle under her homemade afghans. It didn’t occur to me that I could take over the task.
Until it did.

Several years ago,I bought some crochet hooks and an economy sized skein of light blue yarn. I made yards of chains and row after row of single and double crochet, trying to make my hands remember what to do.  I remembered how much I loved it and how connected it made me feel to the women in my family in general, and Nan in particular. Even now, it’s her voice I hear telling me what to do when I’m not sure of the next step.

Eventually I graduated to actual projects. Layettes for new babies; hats and sweaters, toys. I bought a chalkboard to keep track of all the things I wanted to make next. And then I ran out of family. Everyone had something I made, but I wanted to make more. 

That’s when I decided to open an Etsy store. I envision it as a place for people with children in their lives whom they love very much.  I want someone to look through my shop and say, “Yes, my favorite little one (or their parent) would love this. It’s exactly what I would make for them if I had the time or the inclination.” Each of my items is made from hypoallergenic yarns. All embellishments are fastened securely and all eyes are safety eyes. I want people to feel confident gifting my creations to the most important little people in their lives.

This is my way of staying connected to Nan. I want, like she once did, to know that somewhere in the world, someone is happy because of something I created.

And it gives me something to do with my hands.

Come by and check me out!

Isn't she wonderful? I totally am with her on the talking with your hands... we Italians tend to be a little animated :) Go take a look at her shop, and don't forget to comment below after you like her Facebook page, to be entered for the $20 store credit giveaway!!

Tuesday, May 7, 2013

am i getting through? hello??

Baby Sign Language.

It's all the rage, people. Teach your little tyke to communicate their thoughts and feelings before turning the ripe old age of ONE! As any momma can tell you, this is a serious lure. 98% of our day is trying to figure out what the little squishy requires. 

Are you hungry??

Are you wet???

Are you tired????


It is seriously the temptation of a lifetime to taunt a mother with that... ooohhh your baby will be able to speak to you! He will tell you he loves you on a daily basis, followed by, "Please mum, can I have some more?"

But seriously, all kidding aside. I have taken a running leap onto the bandwagon that is baby sign language. They say (who is they? really?) to start when your baby is born, and they should be signing back to you by the time their first birthday rolls around, or possibly even earlier. This is well before most children say their first word, around 2 years old. Then they taunt you with these incredible videos of small children signing amazing things to their parents.

D and I have started watching about 15 minutes of Baby Einstein's Baby Sign Language every morning, and trying to incorporate a few new signs into our daily routine each week. Let me tell you, he loves the videos. I was always that mom that said he would never ever watch TV, but watching that little squishy face laugh hysterically at sock puppets bopping each other on the head is the most adorable thing I've ever seen, and I cannot take that away from him. Not to mention, it's super educational, and at most we watch 15 minutes a day. 


And here is the huge, giant BUT.

Teaching a baby ASL is HARD FREAKING WORK. For instance, mom has to learn all the signs. Then mom has to remember to use the signs every single time. So every time he has a bottle, I should sign "eat" and "milk". Every time I change his diaper, I should sign "change". This is incredibly hard to do, let me tell you. I probably remember to sign to him about 60% of the time. 

Which brings us to obstacle number two. 

The blank stare.

My happy, smiley baby will wipe all expression off his face and stare at me like the cheese has fallen off the cracker every time I sign to him. Which makes me wonder, does he know what I'm doing and just think I'm incredibly dumb, or am I getting through at all? Am I just confusing him? This is definitely not an instant gratification endeavor.

Alas, I will probably not know for several more months. But I am greatly looking forward to the first time he signs back to me, "Mom, seriously. Stop."

Are any of you moms out there using ASL with your baby? Are you having success, or difficulty?

(PS. Check back tomorrow! We're having our first GIVEAWAY!!!)

Friday, May 3, 2013


Happy Friday, everyone!

1. The requisite adorable baby picture. He started doing this thing where he shows me his bottom gums... maybe teeth are on the way? It's so cute :)

2. My hair is finally long enough for curls, and I'm loving it!

3. I signed up for the Color Run 5K with my bestie! It's my first 5k, and I'm really excited! Let the training commence!

4. I finally gave up on my iPhone 4, and got a Samsung Galaxy S4... I like it, but it's definitely taking some getting used to. We'll see if it lasts or if I hop back on board the Apple train :)

5. Meatloaf cupcakes with mashed potato frosting and peas sprinkles. Because food should be fun!!

How was your week?

Linking up with Lauren from The Lauren Elizabeth

 photo H54Fbutton-triangle_zps678b65ba.jpg

Thursday, May 2, 2013

15 things nobody told me about being a mom

1. I will have an unidentified wet spot on some part of my clothing at all times. It'll be weird and gross, and people will stare.

2. Talking about poop will no longer be taboo, and I will bring it up at inappropriate times, like during lunch, without a second thought. Sorry in advance.

3. Speaking of poop, I will never again be able to confidently lick chocolate off my fingers.

4. Nothing in this world is more interesting, funny, or cute as my child. He is brilliant and will probably be a child prodigy of some sort. No argument.

5. People will get unbelievably annoyed at the obscene amount of pictures I post of the baby on Instagram and Facebook. See # 4.

6. Logistics will begin to rule my brain. Such as, "How will I eat this large and messy sandwich while holding this squirming baby with a bottle in his mouth, and does he need a diaper change, and how will I fit his stroller in the stall?". Multitasking is key. Also, a third arm would be helpful.

7. 9:00 PM is LATE.

8. Nothing, absolutely nothing, is as good as that little boy wrapping his arms around my neck like he'll never let go. He won't have to, because I will always be within arm's reach.

9. I will feel constantly guilty that I'm not working and contributing financially to our household, but the thought of going back to work and putting D in daycare will cause that guilt to multiply by like, a gazillion. It's a no-win situation. I now grasp the concept of "mommy guilt".

10. Diaper genies are death traps, specifically conceived to torture the fragile minds of overworked, exhausted mothers at 4 am.

11. Everything you will feed your baby is disgusting. Those moms that say they try everything their baby eats first? Yeah. Good for you. Formula and rice cereal are probably the nastiest things I've ever tasted.

12. At least once a day, I desperately wish for a kangaroo pouch. It'd be so much easier to just stuff him in a skin pocket than try to strap myself in the baby carrier contraption or unfold the spaceship that is our stroller. Now that I say it out loud, it's kind of strange to wish for a skin pouch and a third arm, but there ya go. Pregnancy does the most ridiculous things to your body, so why can't it add in some helpful additional appendages?

13. Every cough, sneeze, or sniffle is probably cholera. Or malaria. Or dysentery. Your pediatrician's phone number will be on speed dial.

14. Every milestone your child hits feels like winning a gold medal and the Nobel Prize, while eating an ice cream sundae atop a unicorn. It's a good feeling.

15. You will wonder what your life possibly could have meant before this tiny little person came into the world?

I honestly couldn't be happier.

Wednesday, May 1, 2013

did you know?

I love weird, useless facts. So I decided I would share. Get ready to add some wrinkles to your brain, my friends!

Put tea bags in your shoes to rid them of the gross feet smell.

Adolf Hitler and Joseph Stalin, who together killed more than 40 million people, were both nominated for Nobel Peace Prizes.

Research has determined that most people are the happiest at 7:26 PM on a Saturday night.

There are more than 1,000 chemicals in a single cup of coffee. Of these, only 26 have been tested, and half of those caused cancer in rats. Sorry, coffee drinkers!

There are about 50,000 people living in Japan who are 100 years old or older. Think they found the fountain of youth?

Zakynthos Island in Greece has some of the bluest water in the world. The boats look like they are floating on air!

A group of unicorns is called a blessing. 

A survey reported that 12% of Americans think Joan of Arc was Noah's wife. Really, people?!

Grapes explode when you put them in the microwave.

In Singapore, it is illegal to sell or use chewing gum.

More than 6,000 people check into US Emergency Rooms each year with pillow related injuries. Please, just try to injure yourself with a pillow. It's really difficult. 6,000 of the dumbest people in America, folks.

The world's youngest parents lived in China in 1910 and were ages 8 and 9. Ew.

The Mona Lisa has no eyebrows. It was the height of fashion during the Italian Renaissance to shave them off. Double Ew.

Most lipstick contains fish scales. Triple Ew.

This picture is small because it disgusts me. But it gets the point across, don't you think! EW!

A "jiffy" is an actual unit of time for 1/100th of a second.

Don't you feel smarter? Now go, share your knowledge with the world!

Happy Wednesday!

All photos are stock from Google.