isn't my life glamorous?

Let me set the stage:
I was picking up my two boys up from school.  It wasn't raining and they asked to play for a few minutes with their friends.  I readily agreed; it would give me a chance catch up with some girlfriends.  As I was chatting, I caught sight of Little Man.  I knew at once we were in trouble.  He was walking like the tin man [stiff legs and at a slow pace].  He had one hand behind his back holding his bottom.   I watched the scene in slow motion and calmly said, "Hurry, buddy."  Then he stopped quickly and froze. [Oh. no.]  "It already came out, mommy."  [Breathe in, breathe out.]

Quickly shifting in to crisis management mode, I gather my oldest and told him we had to go.  "Why?" he asks.  Poop in the pants.  Is that reason enough?  Living less than a mile from school, I just needed to get him home.  However, he refused to walk.  I convinced him to just get into the school bathroom and we could dump the contents of his underwear - so that he could walk to the car and sit down for the ride home. Thank goodness I wasn't a rookie.  It is a delicate process of getting a soiled pair of undies down cleanly.  Score one for mom. Step 1 complete.  Next, quickly home for clean up and new clothes. 

Once in the car I quickly fire off a text to my dear friend who witnessed it all... 
"Isn't my life glamorous?"

Her reply: "Poor thing! This is why we drink!"   [I do love my girlfriends.]

A few hours later Little Man was dancing and catching snowflakes.  I watched him and smiled.  My heart full.   [And I sure do love him!]

Is my life glamorous? No.  Do some days include poop-filled Ninjago underwear? Yes.  
Let's be honest motherhood is not for the weak.   Thankfully, the low moments are often followed by some of the best! 


personalization error

I recently ordered these cocktail napkins from Pottery Barn.   A little napkin with our initial could only make appetizers and cocktails a little more fun. I was giddy with excitement when the package arrived yesterday.

[one might refer to this as an epic fail]

The monogram was supposed to be {T}.  Fun, right?  Somehow their order system added two dashes after the single letter T that I entered.  {T - - } then translated directly to the embroidery.  I had to just laugh.  Can you imagine the person packaging my napkins?  Do you think they saw the humor in this ridiculous monogram?  For a moment, I thought about keeping them.  It could be my inside joke with my husband. A test for our friends and family.  Who would mention or ask about this odd personalization?  You know that awkward moment when you notice something, but don't say anything in case it would be rude.  Slightly evil, but still funny.

In the end I decided to return them.  The return reason code: WP-personalization error.  Yep, I would say that pretty much sums it up.  

The clincher:  I wanted to reorder the napkin with the correct monogram. Nope.  On back order until January 9, 2013. 


washi tape

After putting my pumpkins in the compost bin, my table needed a little cheer.  I gathered a few items and found my washi tape.  I dig this decorative paper tape.  It makes a novice look really crafty!

{washi tape from anthropologie and michael's}

{materials:  red hots, scissors, dollar vase from michael's, and washi tape}

I chose to use the white and silver tape.  It is as simple as masking tape {and easy to remove}.

{dollar vase with washi tape filled (filled with red hots), "rudolf" glassybaby , prayer candle}

Hmmmmm, how else can I use washi tape?  What would you do?


make a [lighting] plan

 {'tis the season to be jolly}

I know that we made some important decisions about our Christmas lights last year.  There were some critical changes that we were going to make this year.  We had a plan.  Not sure what it was now-but I am certain it was good.  Has that ever happened to you?

As soon as it is dry and I am fairly sure he will not slip and fall, I send my husband up on the roof. Sunday turned out to be a perfect day.  In the end, we decided to simplify this year.  I love the look of these bulb lights.  When you use light clips you can get an almost perfect line with perfect spacing.  {I am an "all white lights" kind of girl inside, but I splash out out with red bulbs on the house.} I spent most of my afternoon up a tree.  Methodically, I wrapped hundreds of white lights around the limbs of our Japanese Maple.  Risking my life, numerous times, to get a strand just a little bit higher.  The pay off is totally worth the risk.

The Christmas train has left the station and I am joyfully on board.  Don't let it run you over.  Just take small steps and find the joy of the season. Make a plan. 

What is the first thing on your to do list?


thankful for [the little things]

[wooden pumpkin by Jen's Signs, "hide and seek" glassybaby, prayer candle]

[crafty pumpkin Little Man made for me]

Dorothy Dean's Turkey Talk.  Instructions my grandmother sent to me when I was preparing to roast my first turkey.  She had received it as part of a Homemakers Service mailing printed by the local paper.  Decades later, nothing has changed.  I love that I have this!

Happy Thanksgiving to all of you.  I am thankful for the little things.
{And also all of you.  Thank you for being so supportive of my little blog!}


dark and stormy

The weather yesterday here in Seattle, pushed me to hunt down the essentials for one of my husband's favorite drinks, a Dark and Stormy.  Fitting, right? 

The key is finding good ginger beer.  Ice, Bundaberg ginger beer, and Gosling's Black Seal Rum.  The perfect Dark and Stormy.


pumpkin shrimp curry

I do love my iPhone.  It is just so darn handy.  I often take pictures of magazine images with my camera in waiting rooms.  It is easy to snap pictures of recipes, exercise routines and restaurant tips that I want to remember.  This recipe is a perfect example.  Not sure exactly which magazine it was from last fall, but I have made this many times over.  My obsession with butternut squash has not faded and this curry dish is the perfect mix of the "other" squash and pumpkin. 

Sorry for the blur, but I was pretty darn excited to eat!  


chevron stripes

Pumpkins are still the #1 decoration for a few more days.  I am crazy about chevron stripes and could not resist this project!
Grab a pumpkin.  Make a pattern of chevron stripes with masking tape or painters' tape.  Paint entire pumpkin with white spray paint.  [I used Krylon Flat White.]

Fun, right? 



I am totally digging my new plan to meet up with friends.  I will call it my, "Let's do breakfast." plan.  Lunch is great, but it happens right in the middle of the day. [Funny how that works!].  With lots to do, meeting a friend right after I drop the kids off at school allows me ample time after to get sh*t done!  With a bit of rummaging, I have been finding some amazing places that serve mid-week breakfast. 

I recently lingered over a breakfast at Oddfellows Cafe + Bar.  Exposed brick, repurposed furniture and fixtures, and tons of light make this Capitol Hill eatery comfortable and easy.  They are open 8am-late daily-with a full bar.  Breakfast was delicious, so I can only assume lunch and dinner would be too!  Oddfellows gains total bonus points being next door neighbors with Elliott Bay Book Co.  That is a perfect one, two punch! 


the holiday card....

The pressure is on.  Time to pick a picture and theme and get my holiday cards ordered.  Each and every year, November arrives and I scramble.  We have a few requirements in our home for the picture that we choose:

1.  It MUST include all 4 of us.  [My husband stands firm on this one.]

Wait, I guess that is just one one requirement.  Easier said than done. How many of you get to the end of a calendar year and have yet to take one picture that included your entire family?  I was so desperate a few years ago I bought $1 Santa hats, put my camera on self-timer and posed us in front of the fireplace.  Not our best picture.  Professional shots are the easiest, but we only have those done every few years or so. 

Last year we were crazy enough to go indoor skydiving and I had a bystander snap a quick picture.  In the end, it was the picture that summed up our year.  [Oh! What fun!]

What I love the most about our card in 2012 was that is was TOTALLY us!  It is completely freeing to give up on the idea of the "perfect" family picture, for the "perfect" holiday card. Who's perfect anyway?  Perfect is boring.   We didn't sky dive this year, so our picture won't be quite so awesome.  Nonetheless, I do have one of all four of us-so I am on to step 2.

{PS.  I love everything about the upcoming holiday, including the cards! If I didn't find enjoyment in the process-I wouldn't do it.  My thought: if it doesn't feed you in some way, shape or form, DO NOT do it.}


and the trophy goes to....

Uh, oh.  I am so screwed.

Both of my sons are wrapping up their fall sports seasons.  And yes, they will be receiving trophies for simply being on a team.  I am indifferent to the idea of awarding trophies for nothing special.  I am pretty sure if, and when, either of them get a trophy for an actual accomplishment they will understand the difference. 

Actually, we should roll this idea over to parenting.   You wouldn't actually need maternal skills or exhibit exceptional ability.  No need to go above and beyond-just conception and birth.  Mother of Year!


daily dishonesty

The little lies we tell ourselves...daily. 

Hey, why not write 'em down, make 'em pretty, and frame it.  How brilliant?  Check out the rest @ Daily Dishonesty.


this takes the cake [plate]

I took down all of my Halloween decor, but fall is still center stage.  I loved this simple idea to showcase a mini white pumpkin.   A small cake plate, white hydrangeas and the pumpkin-that's all you need. 
I placed mine on a side table in the living room.  It would be right at home in an entry or center stage on your table. 


hello november.


November is [somehow] upon us.  I am still sneaking Halloween candy from my kids' stash and yet have Christmas in the back of my head.  The calendar indicates lots of extra time with my kids [no school and 1/2 days are scattered throughout the month] and an end to fall sports schedules.  Forecasts predict cooler, wet weather.  I hope to share with you- in the next few weeks -ideas to stay sane and live creatively.  We should all be able to find time to share good meals, take care of our bodies, and love those around us-abundantly.

hello, november.  happy to greet you again.


grilled pb & banana sandwich

I present an alternative afternoon snack or brunch idea.  Grilled peanut butter and banana sandwich.

You have the ingredients on hand.  They are all staples.

white bread, peanut butter, banana, butter and cinnamon sugar

I started with this recipe, but made a few changes to my sandwich [I added butter and cinnamon sugar].
  1. Spread peanut butter on one slice of bread and place sliced pieces of banana on top. [I cut the banana in 1/2 and sliced it the long way.]
  2. Place other slice of bread on top.  Butter top of piece of bread and sprinkle with cinnamon sugar.  
  3. Heat skillet over med. high heat and place buttered side down.  Butter other side of sandwich and sprinkle on more of that cinnamon goodness!  Grill until golden brown.
It far surpassed my expectations.  The addition of butter and cinnamon sugar created a crispy, sweet outer shell on the bread.  The insides were warm and gooey.  It is certainly more sweet than savory.  Kids of all ages will devour it!  And the variations are endless. 

[this. is. good.]

PS.  You could use a natural peanut butter.  I use Jif.  I am choosy like that. 


toulouse petit

"Daytime drinking has never been been so dignified, fun, and guilt-free...."

Who wouldn't love a restaurant with a motto like that?  I had a long, indulgent breakfast this week at Toulouse Petit Kitchen and Lounge.  It sits on the corner of Queen Anne Blvd. and Mercer Street in lower Queen Anne [Seattle].

The rustic art-nouveau decor invites you to linger over your press coffee and make tough menu decisions!  Sweet or savory?  I went with savory this time!
Eggs Benedict with Dungeness Crab and Fine Herbs.

It was so incredibly delicious!  Our waitress offered her Top 5 menu items.  
  • Cured Pork Cheeks Confit Hash
  • Duck Confit Hash
  • Spicy Shrimp Creole and Eggs over Creamy Grits 
  • Eggs Benedict with Dungeness Crab with Fine Herbes
  • Crème Caramel French Toast
Even better, Monday-Friday [8-11] is Breakfast Happy Hour.  Most items are only $8.  SO grab a friend [or a few] and head to Toulouse Petit for a mid-week breakfast! 

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