Wednesday, February 29, 2012

a favorite

CamelBak kids bottles are still my favorite on-the-go choice. They work just as great for my two-year-old as they do for my six-year-old. They are sturdy, they wash well, and they last a long time. I especially love that I see them at Target now, so easy. At $11.99-$14 each, they are worth the price because they outlast all sippies and water bottles. Love!

Monday, February 27, 2012


I needed a cheap and easy way to hang all of my necklaces because they were getting all tangled up in a drawer. I saw on Pinterest that someone had used a tie hanger to do so and I thought that was a perfectly easy thing for me to do. So I went to Target, spent less than $10, and voila! I kind of love it.

Thursday, February 23, 2012

as a parent

Being a parent is hard work. I work at it every day (and what feels like every second). But as a parent we are naturally filled with doubts, concerns, and worries about whether we are doing a good job. I think that as we grow as parents we begin to feel more confident in our parenting style and our beliefs. I can feel myself becoming more rooted and confident every year, but I still question myself from time-to-time. I discipline a lot, I am stricter than many of my friends, I do not co-parent, and I have high expectations for my kids. Sometimes at the end of the day that doesn't leave a lot of extra fun time or snuggle time. And many times it means day with lots of voice raising. And so I wonder how they feel about our life and me.

It seems like as soon as I wonder about how I am doing, I get a sweet homemade book from my son. Or a picture. Or a letter. Or my kids telling me I am the best mom ever. And then I realize that what we have going works for us, and what you have going probably works for you too. Because if you are working at it that means you are caring and loving on your children and I think they know that. They feel it. I have a huge stash of picture and little letters and those little gems are the confident reassurance I need that I am raising happy and healthy kids. So while it's normal to doubt your parenting, keep the little signs from your kids in your heart as proof that you are doing a good job. And then feel confident as you grow, change, and evolve as a parent.

Wednesday, February 22, 2012


I LOVE having jewelry designers as clients! I have two and both are so different and so talented. I also don't mind being paid partly in jewelry. I had my eye on this Gold Safety Pin Necklace for a while. Pretty right? I already have the gold cross necklace and I see a Vintage poker Chip in my future too. You can check out all of Miranda Frye's jewelry on her website. Enjoy!

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

cafe yummy

Who besides me loves Cafe Rio? I get the same thing every time I go, the Sweet Pork Salad with the Cilantro-lime vinaigrette dressing. Yummy! So, imagine my surprise when my bestie Noel told me she had a recipe for the same delicious pork and Cilantro-lime dressing. Out of pure curiosity (and some doubt) I made it for dinner yesterday and I was really happy how it all turned out. Nothing can beat the original but it came pretty darn close.

For the kids I made them a plate with Cilantro Rice, pork, and some tortillas (all separate). For the adults I layered a bowl with the cilantro rice, then chopped romaine, then the sweet pork, and the dressing on top. I had tortillas on the side. It was simple and delicious! Enjoy!

Sweet Pork Recipe

2 pounds pork
3 cans Dr. Pepper
1/4 c. brown sugar
Dash garlic salt
1/4 c. water
1 can diced green chilies
3/4 (10oz) can red enchilada sauce
1 c. brown sugar

Put the pork in a heavy duty Ziploc bag to marinade. Add about a can and a half of Dr. Pepper and about 1/4 c. of brown sugar. Marinade for a few hours or overnight.

Drain marinade and put pork, 1/2 can of Dr. Pepper, water, and garlic salt in crock-pot on high for about 3-4 hours (or until it shreds easily, but don't let it get TOO dry) or on low for 8 hours. Remove pork from crock pot and drain any liquid left in the pot. Shred pork.

In a food processor or blender, blend 1/2 can Dr. Pepper, chilies, enchilada sauce and remaining brown sugar (about a cup, you can add a little more or less to taste). If it looks too thick, add more Dr. Pepper little by little.

Put shredded pork and sauce in crockpot and cook on low for 2 hours. That's it!

Here is the link to the original recipe... we used Dr. Pepper instead of Coke at my friend's urging and it came out great!

Creamy Tomatillo Dressing

1 packet TRADITIONAL Hidden Valley Ranch mix (not BUTTERMILK)
1 c. mayonnaise
1 c. buttermilk
2 tomatillos, remove husk, diced
1/2 bunch of fresh cilantro
1 clove garlic
Juice of 1 lime
1 jalapeno (I used some jalapeno slices from a jar)

Mix all ingredients together in the blender.

Here is the link to the dressing.

Friday, February 17, 2012

need to do

I am having one of those periods in my life where there is so much that I want to do, that I actually can't do anything. I'm so busy thinking and being anxious that nothing gets done. It's pretty awful. I have blog posts unwritten, piles to sort, and decisions to be made.

Here's hoping that I can get my act together and "do" more than "think."

Hoping to catch up this weekend.


Thursday, February 16, 2012

valentine's day recap

My mom's table on Valentine's

B's Valentines for school

Making Valentines

Disappearing with the ribbon

Before taking to the senior citizen home
(and some for our family too)

Homemade valentines for my babies

Have to wear red Toms

Decorating together

Pretty girl and glitter

Happy Valentine's Day

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

happy valentine's day

B's Valentine's for his first grade class

I made each of my kids simple homemade cards

Friday, February 10, 2012

weeklong catch up

I guess I had a busy week (which I did) because I had no idea that I had not posted since Monday. Hello! So here are all of the things I should have been blogging about:

You can check out my post over at my blog Family and Frills on to read about the new exhibit at The Discover Science Center and how much fun we had there. And yes, we met the real Dora who is surprisingly big :)

If you asked me two months ago what is the one thing I have never had any interest in as far as exercise, I would have said (hands down) running. However this economy really has me in a pinch and I had to find a way to lose weight, tone, and do something during the day even with kids in tow. And so two weeks ago I dedicated myself to the Couch to 5K program. It's free. At the very least you only have to work out for 25 minutes, 3 days a week. My kids can go with me in the jogging stroller. And so here I am, trying to teach my body how to run. I am planning on making it all 9 weeks! I have been running about 4-5 days a week so far and I pack the kids fun snack bags for the ride. I know it will get tough but hopefully I can take on any 20 minute challenge. Wish me luck on week 3 starting tomorrow.

It was 50's Day at school so we dressed my big guy up as a soda jerk. Pretty darn cute, right? I stayed up sewing that bow tie until 1am the night before. Oh, the things we do for our kids!

Wishing you a wonderful weekend!

Monday, February 6, 2012

weekend recap

I found my picture in this month's OC Family Magazine in 
the Blogger Spotlight section. And yes, I picked up 5 copies 
so that my mom can have one and then I have 4 more to leave 
all around the house so I can extend my 15 minutes of 
fame to anyone who stops by!

My big sis always likes to turn our cookies into ice cream 
sandwiches. So for Super Bowl Sunday I made 14 of these 
ice cream sandwiches for a party. They were a hit! Here is 
(I left out the raisins for these).

Our extra lovely and amazing friends announced the sex of their 
baby via pizza at their Super Bowl party! Awesome right?  
Best Super Bowl EVER!

Friday, February 3, 2012


While testing out different muffin recipes I am finding that my kids like the simplest ones the best. We really loved these super easy Banana Chocolate Chip Muffins! Recipe here!

Thursday, February 2, 2012

valentine's day

I LOVE Valentine's Day..... made some decorations with things I already had around the house.

Wednesday, February 1, 2012


Yesterday was gorgeous and we had the park all to ourselves. Doesn't get better than that, which coming from a mom who hates the park, is a big deal! As much as I love winter, yesterday was an undeniably perfect day for January.