Tuesday, November 30, 2010

It's Advent Time!

Today is November 30th....so do you know what tomorrow is? It's Advent Calendar Time on the Carol Browne site! Those of you that were around last year may remember this wonderful event, those that are new....well boy are you going to be happy that you read the post today. Carol gets a Lego Advent Calendar each year and tells a story each day when she unwraps the hidden gems. It's charming, it's hilarious and it's just about the best way to ring in Christmas. This is seriously one of my favorite December traditions and is something I look forward to every year. I can't wait till Leyton is old enough so we can log on together to see what Carol found in her box today! No pressure or anything Carol!So, sit back, relax and get ready for a barrel full of laughs as we count down the days till Christmas with Carol!

Monday, November 29, 2010

Merry Christmas

To say that the hubby and I have really good luck this time of year is like saying that I would enjoy walking through Times Square naked in the dead of winter....which I wouldn't want to do just in case some of you think I might be weird enough. We always have things breaking down or streaks of bad luck. Car repairs, broken appliances, busted electronics. You name it! So, this year is not different. We had some major car repair, and then on the way to pick up said car yours truly ran through a red light. I have never had a ticket before and boy when that red light camera flash went off I was wishing that I had been giving the bird while going through the intersection. I knew I was wrong, but I was in that situation where breaking is going to be fast and hard or just step on it a bit and go through. I obviously picked the wrong option. In California....these tickets are almost $500. What makes it worse, while I still fully admit I was wrong, I was also on a dinky little residential intersection. I feel like these fines should be different levels depending on where you are. Nope, not happening.

Oh, and this Thanksgiving??? I got to be thankful that at least the washing machine broke down on black Friday so I could get a deal. I hope people are accepting kisses for Christmas this year.

Sunday, November 28, 2010

Dress Up

Ok, I admit it. I have succumbed to the cuteness of dressing up my kid. I love to put him in silly hats and sometimes ridiculous clothing. I'm not sure why, but man is dress up fun. A recent trip to the eye doctor was no different. My mom was trying to get my assistance in picking out glasses. I on the other hand was entertaining myself by putting the child glasses on Leyton. He just looks so dang cute and he is so easy going that he simply doesn't care. He picked out a lovely pair of Coach glasses to give him that sophisticated librarian look. Then it was the Bolle's for the sporty look when he has the top down on his stroller.

Saturday, November 27, 2010

Small Business Saturday Success!

Today my mom and I made a couple trips to support Small Business Saturday. Even if they didn't take American Express it was important to me to support the small local business. Our first stop was one of my favorite purse stores Finders Keepers. Barbara has some of the most amazing handbags and jewelry. She recently added a baby boutique to her store and they carry the only socks that stay on Leyton's feet, Me In Mind. I bought him some new socks and his Grandma got him the most adorable hat! We're working on a pattern for this hat so we can make more and perhaps sell them or give them as gifts!

Our next stop was to Never Felt Better Vegan Shop. Jen has great vegan and animal friendly products, and even if you eat meat like me...you can't beat the handmade items. I walked away with a great owl scarf thanks to my mom and American Express!!We finished up the day by heading downstairs to Sugar Plum Vegan for a delicious Whoppie Pie!

To sum it up Small Business Saturday was a huge and delicious success!!

Friday, November 26, 2010

Thrity Find

I've always wanted a vintage plastic Santa to put on the front porch for Christmas. I look for one whenever I am at the thrift store but never have much luck. Either they are too scary, too faded or just plain ugly. While I didn't have any luck I did have luck finding a Snowman!! He was $9.99 and when I tested him in the store...he didn't work. I knew this might just be the bulb so I took my chances and took him home. I put a new bulb in him...still didn't work! My mom then realized that the plug had a fuse and the hubby verified that the fuse was burnt off. So, after three trips to three different stores I had a fuse in hand and voila!Working Snowman! Right now he is in the corner inside our house but once we put our Christmas lights up he will proudly sit on the front porch. He looks small in this picture, but he's just over 3 feet tall...not a bad deal!

Thursday, November 25, 2010

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Small Business Saturday

It's coming, I can feel it breathing down my neck like a smelly breathed dragon. This year I feel totally unprepared. I feel like I should be excited since I have a child to share it with...the truth of the matter is though, I am not. Yes Christmas, I am talking about you. Maybe it's because we aren't going anywhere for the holidays. Maybe it's because I typically have made a lot of gifts already and right now have nothing. Maybe it's because I don't even have any ideas of what to get people. Maybe it's because Leyton is young and my fear is that he is going to eat ornaments off the tree. Who knows really. All I know is it's coming and I can't get excited about it yet.

Then there is black Friday, which for me is made even blacker by the fact that I spend it looking at the inside of my eyelids instead of shopping at 3am. I tried it once, it was fun, but I never felt a strong need to go again. Plus, a couple years ago I started doing everything I could to support the handmade community and I started making or buying handmade. The first year it was about 50/50....last year it was about 80/20. Could I possibly make it to 100% this year?? I don't know, but I'm going to try.

So instead of Black Friday, I would rather participate in Small Business Saturday! American Express has started this event to encourage people to promote small businesses since it creates local jobs and more money goes back to the community. I'm not a big fan of American Express but I have to admit I love this idea. There are so many great small businesses now in Sacramento, many of which even sell handmade items. I plan on getting out there on Saturday to buy at least one thing to mark off my Christmas list! Otherwise I will never hit my 100% goal....do you think I can make it???

You too can join the Small Business Saturday movement by checking out the Facebook page! I was in no way paid or compensated by American Express, I just believe in shopping local and give them kudos for putting this together.

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

A knitting redo!

My mom brought some gloves with her that she found for 50 cents, in Florida. My guess is that gloves aren't in high demand over there! They were handmade and very cute in a mismash way, but they were a little bit short. She asked if I could make them longer. So, I added about two inches of length to them, then stitched a couple mismatched buttons on the wrists and a button so you could fold back the mitten portion when it isn't in use. Also props to the person that made these because while you can't see it in the picture...they made the thumb a hole so you can stick your thumb out when you need it for texting and such! They are still a total mismash pair of gloves, but much cuter and more wearable now! Great thrift store find turned into something useful!

Monday, November 22, 2010

Bed Head

Seeing Leyton's hair change has been pretty funny. When he was born he had a ton of hair, but it was way back on his forehead.....it was also a curly afro when it was wet. As he got older the hair in the front grew in and his overall head thickened up. With the original hairs that were left he ended up with a slight mullet and rat tail in the back. I gave him a little trim and now he has a mix of longer hairs that grew in at the beginning and these short flat top length hairs that are just growing in. Needless to say, he can wake up with quite the bed head these days!!

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Oh my!

You know the holidays are right around the corner when you have had a couple slices of pie! Pie is probably one of my most favorite desserts. Ever since I found the recipe for the Pioneer Woman Pie Crust I have been in love with making pies. This is seriously the best crust I have ever tasted and I almost always have a disk in the freezer!

This year I made a gorgeous and yummy apple pie to start the season off. The crust came out so perfect I was almost sad I made a crumble topping instead of a crust topping. Instead, I used the second crust to make the Chocolate Bourbon Pecan Pie that was featured on Tasty Kitchen by She's Wears Many Hats recently. I'd love to show you a picture of that, but it's gone. Obviously it was delicious!!

Saturday, November 20, 2010

Shrimp Island

Tonight was our annual turkey party! We weren't sure we were going to have it this year with Leyton but since my Mom was there we figured we'd have those extra set of hands needed to pull it off. Instead we just kept it on the small side and I have to say it was lovely! The food of course was delicious, only made better by the company.

I can't talk about the night though without highlighting an award winning appetizer!! Our friend Chris or "G" as we call him is always in charge of bringing salami rolls. This year he wanted to bring salami rolls, but also bring something new. As he was assembling his appetizer in the kitchen I was in stitches because seriously the guy has turned into the male Martha Stewart.

I introduce to you.....Shrimp Island.

Friday, November 19, 2010

Water Monster

When I started feeding Leyton food the book I was reading at the time said I should also have him drink a little water too. I put water in a bottle and you would have thought I was giving the kid straight vodka. I tried a couple times and each time got the same reaction.

Then Grandma arrives.



Now whenever I have ANYTHING in a glass with ice I have a water monster sitting off to the side lines with his mouth wide open waiting for a sip.

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Grandma La La

Today my Mom arrived from Florida to visit Leyton. She hasn't seen him since he was a month old so it is certain that he will be in her arms as much as he will allow. When Grandma arrives it is not without gifts! She took a recent trip to Paris and while there picked out some excellent books for Leyton. Three of them are in French so hubby is going to do his best to remember how to read French from his high school days...that should be entertaining to say the least. Me, I'll stick with "Mr. Chicken Goes to Paris." The illustrations in this book are fantastic, it is sure to be a favorite!

My Mom also brought some amazing cars that belonged to her Dad. They are made of cast iron and are just about the coolest thing ever. I remember seeing these around the house growing up and I'm so glad she hung onto them. It's so funny to see what toys were like way back when and how different and safe they are now. I mean, a cast iron car?! It takes the term "Don't throw your toys" or "Don't hit your brother with that" to a whole new level!

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Making Baby Food

As soon as Leyton was ready to eat solids I was pretty set that I was going to do everything I could to make his food. I would buy the cereals (rice, oatmeal, etc) but no foods from a jar or what not. This wasn't any strong belief, although I know it is better for him. More than anything it was a cost thing. I already got hit in the wallet having to put him on formula at a month old so if I could ease the burden of food costs I was all over it. He's now been eating solids for 2 months and I haven't purchased a single jar yet! I would even make his cereals if I had a better food processor.

I thought I'd show you a tutorial on how I make the food! I didn't buy any expensive baby food maker as I didn't see the need to have a $200 appliance that just did one thing. Today we are making pears! I started by peeling and dicing all the pears. Then I set up my pot with a steaming basket and steam the pears for 20-30 minutes. It really depends on what kind of food you are steaming and how ripe it is.

Once the pears are steamed, into the food processor they go. I start by pulsing them on the "food processor" setting. From there I can tell if I'm going to need to add some water. I only add water if there isn't enough liquid in the product to blend up. Once I get it pulsed I turn it on steady for a couple minutes, then switch to the "puree" setting until they are nice and smooth. We do this in the garage because I'm pretty sure I have the loudest food processor EVER.

Now that we are all blended I get my dollar store ice cube trays and fill away.
Once filled they go into the freezer till they are good and solid at which point I transfer them into a labeled freezer bag. It's important to use freezer bags so you avoid frost bite.

That's it! When he's ready to eat I either thaw in the fridge or on low power in the microwave. Right now he eats about 2 cubes each time. In the beginning it was just a half a cube. I typically can get him about 15 servings of food for roughly $3. I do this with everything! We have bags full of avocado, sweet potato, winter squash, mango, green beans and pears waiting in the freezer. It's so convenient, so easy and so cheap!!

Hope this helps you out in your baby food making!!

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Cause that's how I roll.....

Guess what is back?Woohooo....the bandaged up big toe. Yep, for the THIRD time I have had needles jammed into my big toe only to have nail ripped off. Oh...you may have thought that it was fixed the first time. Or maybe fixed the second time, you know when they put that ACID on my cuticle to prevent the nail from even growing back. Well my friends you were wrong. I mean, what is another winter season without Stacey walking around town in flip flops?! You know things have taken a bad turn when I start talking about myself in the third person.

All I'm saying is third time better be a mother fucking charm. Sorry Grandma.

Monday, November 15, 2010

Monkey Business

Having Andrea here for a visit was fantastic! She got to spend some great time with Leyton and I know he loved having her around. She also spent some great time with her Uncle Bill being introduced to shows about snake and shark bites! With me, well, we just monkey'd around!

Happy Half Birthday!!

I really can't believe that my little baby is 6 months old! Probably one of the few things that "they" got right is that time really does go by fast. I notice a big difference in him, a much stronger big boy look, and boy is this guy not missing any meals! He went for his 6 month check up on Friday and measured in at 20.5lbs and 27 1/4 inches. He's still my little dude though!

Saturday, November 13, 2010

A wonderful visitor!

Yesterday Leyton's cousin Dea arrived for a visit and will be staying with us through the weekend. She'll get her share of bottles, messy food feedings, baths and diapers....all of the good stuff. Most of the time though, the weekend will just be full of snuggles!

Friday, November 12, 2010

Jumping Madness



Let me start by saying that obviously from the above video, Leyton loves his jumper. While he figured out how to jump in it a while ago, only recently did he truly start going crazy whenever I put him in. For me it's both joyful and a fright. Seriously, the first thing that comes to mind when he gets going crazy....shaken baby syndrome. I just imagine visits to the E/R while I am explaining to CPS that he did this to himself in the jumper.

So, a couple days ago I put Leyton in the jumper and figured I'd have just enough time to unload the dishwasher and get him some clean bottles. From the kitchen in our very small house I can hear him jumping away. I was just about done putting all the items away when I realized it was quiet. I was expecting Leyton to scream at any moment because if there is one thing about my son it is that HE WILL TELL YOU WHEN HE IS FINISHED WITH SOMETHING. I finished with the dishes and it was still quiet. Now, I should go ahead and tell you that the seat on this thing spins so he's not always facing in the same direction as when I put him in.

There I go out of the kitchen into the living room only to see the back of my son's head flung backwards, his arms out to his sides completely limp and his legs dangling below completely limp. It was then that I knew he had broken his neck. I ran to him like a freaking gazelle, in tears by the time I got to him and quickly scooped him up only to have him WAKE UP and look at me like, "What the hell is wrong with you woman? I was totally taking a great nap there!"

Welcome to motherhood.

Thursday, November 11, 2010

My lab rat.


Yesterday Leyton participated in a UC Davis study again. Like last time he watched a couple videos to see how much he is paying attention and noticing changes at this age. He also did a couple sitting studies, but boy does this kiddo not like to sit. He would much rather try to stand so those studies did not go so well. I think it's so fun to do these and it looks like he'll do one every two months for a while. Plus he gets a certificate and a free toy! Can't beat that!

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

L.O.S.E.R


Man, I suck at NaBloPoMo. I had a post for yesterday, had dinner and fell asleep on the couch. So, yet another year that I have failed at posting on time each day. One of these days I will get it right!

Tuesday, November 09, 2010

Not thrifty

I was not thrifty this week so this is not Thrift Tuesday! I realized I spoiled it by posting my garage sale find this weekend instead of being patient. Oh well, there is always next week and an exciting possible thrift party in the works so it could be for the best.

On to better things, Mr. Leyton. He's babbling a ton now and last week his babbles started sounding like "dada." While he has no idea what he is saying, it sure is cute. Add to that a face covered in sweet potato and lord help us all.

Monday, November 08, 2010

Thanks Mama and the Dudes!

I found a blog last week and I am absolutely in love with it, Mama and the Dudes. These twin boys could not be any cuter and their creative mama is awesome. Plus, she loves moustaches which almost makes us soul mates.

She recently posted a tutorial on how to make baby leg warmers. I've wanted some of these for Leyton but found most of them to be very girly AND was not going to fork out over $20 for them. so instead I bought a $5 three pack of socks at Walmart, followed the simple tutorial and now Leyton is rocking the leg warmers. These are going to be great when he starts crawling around!Thanks Mama and the Dudes!!

Sunday, November 07, 2010

Moustache Man


Yesterday I got crazy with a pacifier and made the kiddo his very own moustache. He's a little pissed off about the buck teeth.

Saturday, November 06, 2010

I love garage sales!

Today I joined RP and Grimmslee for a yard sale at their ultimate rental. This is their last weekend in the house and I can't express how PRIME this location was for garage sales. Since I had quite a bit of baby stuff to pawn off I headed over. The great thing about yard sales with these two is they have great stuff, so typically there is a lot of swapping and shopping amongst us. I scored some curtain panels from Wendy which I added to the windows in our bedroom. I love the way they look, especially with the chandelier in our bedroom. Thanks Wendy!

Friday, November 05, 2010

About Me

I discovered a new site a while ago called About Me. I wasn't totally sure what it was about, well aside from me of course, but I went ahead and requested to be notified when it was up and running. Today I had a chance to set up my profile and I have to say I kind of dig it. I like the simplicity of my page and the fact that it gives a nice snap shot of who I am and where you can find me. We'll see how it works in the long run but it does compile some nice stats. Go ahead and check it out!

Check out my about.me profile!

Thursday, November 04, 2010

A story in tattoos.....

I realized when trying to come up with items to post each day for NaBloPoMo that I have never shown all of my tattoos and given the story (if there is one) behind them. I got my first tattoo when I was 18 and I don't think more than two years have gone by where I haven't gone "under the needle." That said, I have a total of 8 tattoos. Let's start at the beginning shall we? I think when I was 16 I asked my mom if I could get a ladybug tattooed on my pinkie toe. She said no, wait till your 18. When I was 18, I went in to get it and they said it wouldn't hold up on my toe. So, I got it on the top of my foot instead. Guess what? Didn't hold up on there either. By the time I was in my 20's it looked like a black spider. I decided to transform it and so I got a fish over the top. The fish had this perfect spot on it's head that covered the ladybug nicely. I absolutely love how this tattoo looks when I wear heels!

After the ladybug tattoo I went and got a sunflower on my back. It was a drawing I always used to do in high school and is really the only tattoo I wish wasn't there...only because it seems like such wasted space for something nicer. This tattoo has been worked on about 6 times. Originally it was just the center part and it wasn't in color. Everyone thought it was a spider web so I got color, then everyone thought it was a pineapple. I then had it redone and by the time it was finished it covered my whole lower back. Again, I really don't think I've ever loved it. It's just there.

Next up I got a gnome that I found in a book of gnomes. Originally the gnome just floated above my ankle. My mom always though it needed to be grounded on something so years later I went and got a mushroom for it to sit on.

For my 5 year anniversary with Bill I wanted to get a tattoo for him, but I wasn't going to do names. So, I got a bumble bee. I call Bill "B" so it was the perfect way to express it.

When Bill and I got married I wanted another tattoo to mark that moment. We got married in a barn and had horseshoes on our invitations so I got the horseshoe on my neck. I love this simple tattoo!

Then there was the big accident of 2007, the one that left me hobbled up on the couch for almost a year unable to walk. You know, that little wave incident that happened on my honeymoon. If you're new here, you can start reading about that lovely moment here. It's both a comedy and a tragedy...now anyway. When I was finally able to walk I wanted another tattoo to mark what I had just gone through. That was when I met Alfredo. I went in for a consult and told him the story, I told him I wanted a crutch, and some waves and a banner word. He took all I told him and created this amazing design. This will always be a HUGELY important tattoo for me. When times are tough I know I can Transcend anything!

Next up, the hanger for my mom. This is another one of my favorites! I love that when someone asks me why I have a hanger I tell them "It's because I call my mom Mommy Dearest." The horror and look on their face is classic, no one quite knows what to say after that. Love you Mommy D!

Finally, the Leyton foot print. Also an epic important piece for me.All in all I like my tattoos. Each one is a piece of time. While I might not love them all and would like some things different and some things not there at all....isn't that true about life in general? As easy as it is for someone that doesn't like tattoos to think that they wouldn't want anything permanent because what if they regretted it later, I wouldn't not want them there. I'm always going to regret some things in life and wish I hadn't done them. Having a tattoo there reminds me of those moments instead of being able to just sweep them under the rug and forget about them.

Wednesday, November 03, 2010

More pics!

The hubby came out to the GETty Crafty event so he could drop off Leyton. He and his friend Eric also walked around the event to check stuff out. There were two vendors he really liked, a guy named Chris who draws pictures of Flies for fishing, the other was a woman named Tina who had photography up. He told me he liked her photos and we should get one for our bedroom wall!

I contacted Tina about getting a particular photo from her shop Scatterbox site and not only did she say she could do it in the requested size but she sent it to me for free! Wowza, that made my day.I'm so happy to add the new artwork to the bedroom wall collage. I mean really, who doesn't need a few more Hot Weiners in the bedroom?

Tuesday, November 02, 2010

Thrifty Tuesday?

I'm thinking of starting a weekly feature on the blog, Thrifty Tuesday. A specific day to showcase any great items I got thrifting or at garage sales that week. What do you think? The thing is...I normally don't get a chance to go to a Thrift Store each week so it might be a little tricky to pull off...but I do like a challenge.

Either way, here are a couple great items I scored on a recent trip. I'm always looking at the baby stuff now and still hit the toys area for the rare Fisher Price item. I had success with both areas!
I picked up this great Vintage Chip and Dale baby blanket for $1!!!! It's in excellent condition with no stains or marks. The flannel body does how wear but I can't tell you how soft it is, the blanket is trimmed in white satin with not a blemish to be found. This morning I tucked Leyton into his car seat with this blanket and he was asleep in moments.Also, a rare Fisher Price find. The old school house! The bell is missing off the top, but otherwise is in great shape. I love how when you open the wall there is a great chalk board inside. Now, if I could only find some desks and people....you never find the people in thrift stores, but I'll keep looking and maybe they will show up on Thrifty Tuesday!

Monday, November 01, 2010

Happy NaBloPoMo!

Today, November 1, marks the first day of NaBloPoMo...or National Blog Posting Month for those that are already confused. What it means is I am supposed to blog every day for the month of November and if I do I could win prizes. I've tried this every year for a couple years now. I have tried and I have always failed. While it seems I blog every day there are days when I don't and I cheat and post for that day later. So, this year I'm going to try not to cheat...we'll see how well that goes!

Last night for Halloween it was the usual. Four knocks on the door. So sad. I love seeing the kiddos in their costumes and there are just so few.

Yesterday I realized that I hadn't carved our pumpkins yet. I also didn't have any handy pumpkin carving utensils. Last year I was in the same situation and almost chopped of digits using my Wusthoff knives. So, I set out for a carving kit. Set out and failed. What I did find was a Mr. Potato Head pumpkin set...I had to have it. I got home and quickly carved two pumpkins, keeping it easy so all fingers would be in tact. Then, I popped together the Mr. Pumpkin Head and voila...instant pumpkin.Guess which one got all the attention last night? You got it, the one that I just popped the pieces in.

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