Will: What's that sign say?
Me: That sign says there is a big sale. Nothing we need.
Will: Toys?
Me: No, the sign does not say toys.
Will: Maybe the sign is wrong.

Fabulous Friday -- I love me some bunnies

Now, don't think you need to run out and buy me a bunny every holiday, birthday, anniversary, etc. But I do love me some bunnies. So soft and cuddly ... the stuffed variety. I have never thought real bunnies make the best pet. But then, I've read Watership Down more than a dozen times and would hate to think of Hazel and Fiver stuck in a hutch somewhere.

So back to the bunnies ... I want to make a dozen of these!

The gal behind Playing with Your Food was even kind enough to share a pattern. I know, how freakin' cute! I think I will have time next week to whip up two for some special little boys.

Who loves Peeps? I do! I do! And I would love to make this Bunny Bunting for the mantle. But this, this I will not have time to do. Maybe next year. Dana has the tutorial on her wonderful site, MADE.

One last bunny craft for you. If you are making cupcakes for a school Easter party or the office, Skip to My Lou has cute toppers to download. While there, you can search around for other Spring and Easter-themed crafts.

Happy Spring! Happy Easter!


No rainbow, but rather tasty

I wanted to share how the Rainbow cupcakes turned out. Will and I made them St. Patrick's Day using the recipe featured in the March 2010 issue of Family Fun. If you like crafting with kids, it's worth a subscription.

Hmmmm ... in their picture all the layers are nice and even. And mine, well let's just say they were very colorful. In fact, the perfect cupcake for a tie dye party. My theory is the red layer baked first and then sank down? Anyone else got an explanation?

Though the rainbow didn't appear for us nor did a pot of gold, the cupcakes were tasty enough to share with neighbors. As my husband put it, would you rather have picture-perfect cupcakes that taste bad or bad-looking cupcakes that taste yummy? Yummy for sure.


Fabulous Friday — It's my party

Actually, it's not my party but both boys have birthdays coming up. I try to give myself a month to plan their parties so to avoid the last-minute-do-everything rush ... which happens anyway who are we kidding. I love designing and making the invitations. For Will's party, I have three made, 17 to go. They are fabulous and I can't wait to show them off. But that would require picture taking, uploading ... and I plan to improve the template and post it here for anyone. But first, I have to finish making them. So while you wait, here are some other fabulous invitations ...

Is that not the cutest?!!! For a little boy's first birthday. Made by this talented momma. Pats on the back people, she even made the envelopes! I spotted it on Twig & Thistle.

Amy Moss of Eat Drink Chic made origami hearts to use as invitations to their engagement party. I'm impressed by the sheer amount of work it took. And I congratulated her and her intended for not killing each other in the process. Seriously, working together on projects is a good test of a relationship! Read about the process and then make your own.

Under the category "if I had a million dollars to spend on whatever," I would leave a chuck of change with Night Owl Paper Goods. I love their cards and invitations (printed on wood!) and this tote bag!


A bit disappointed in ya Target

Dear Target,

You knew we would all love the Liberty of London line. That we would buy, buy, buy the cute patterns on everything from clothes to even a bicycle (yes, bicycles!). So why did you order so few of everything? You do know that I have kids that don't like been driven all over creation to find the dress that matches the coat? Even online, the place were the busy mom can shop her heart's desires after hours screams out of stock on practically everything. So get busy reordering so I can buy this or that and the matching wallets!

Sincerely, A loyal shopper

P.S. I was in your new store the other day. How nice of you to build the biggest Target in the world right in my backyard. So nice and clean. And the service! Three separate people asked me if I needed help as I browsed the wide aisles in wonder. That's my kind of shopping.

And no, this was not brought to you by anyone, but if Target wants to thank me for their upcoming quarterly profit they can send me this ... it would look perfect in the master bedroom.


Joseph v. green beans

In honor of St. Patty's Day, I give you ... green beans ...

*No babies were harmed during this lunch. He actually does like green beans. Just not in puree form anymore!


Irish eyes are smilin'

Here's some craft ideas for St. Patrick's Day. I'm bummed that we're on Spring Break because I would love to have taken these cupcakes to Will's class. But the neighbors like baked goods too.

An internet search for rainbow cupcakes will get you many recipes; I'm going to try Family Fun's recipe (that's their picture!) here.

Here's an idea that I'm going to save for future use. Pumpkin Petunia offers a cute free "Lucky Penny" printable. The way Will hoards pennies is pretty funny. I told him about lucky pennies the other day and he was all about it.

Skip to my Lou also has lots of free printables and crafts for the day here. You can find cupcake toppers, a bag topper, a pillow box (pictured below) and much more.

Of course I'm going to tell you about the pillow box. It's from Hello, Good Gravy! You first saw it on my blog here for Valentine's. And now it's back in green. Perfect for Lucky Charms or gold chocolate coins. I'm hoping to see one for Easter. Hint, hint.

Happy St. Patrick's Day! Be sure to wear your green!


Missing my babies

Hi there ... been away from the computer for a few days. My mom came in town and we were busy having fun with the boys, eating at the places are husbands don't like (McAlister's and Mexican), and working. The big project was getting baby clothes ready for the big consignment sale. I've been shopping the sale for a few years now but this is my first time contributing.

Found in the attic were two boxes of baby clothes that Joseph has already been through. There are three more boxes up there for him to grow into. I saved all of Will's clothes for baby No. 2 so it was good that baby No. 2 was indeed a boy. *

*Mommy confession: I wanted a boy the first time around. Would have been happy with a girl but I wanted a boy. And I wanted a boy the second time around too. I think God knows I know nothing about hair bows and dress-up clothes. Having Hot Wheels scattered in every room of the house is more my speed.

I was the only one sad as we washed/sorted the itty-bitty clothes into piles. I miss my babies. Sure Joseph is still little at 10 months but soon he'll be walking, and then running, away from me. William is just shy of 4. When did he get so tall? When did I blink?

I went looking to see if the boys were pictured in some of the clothes put in the sale. Here's Will in 2006 at 4 months. I thought it was clever that the hood lifts to show an engine. When shopping for boys, your choices are dogs, cars, bugs, construction equipment and dogs and bugs driving cars and construction equipment. Add in Thomas the Tank Engine and that's about it.

Here's Joseph in 2009 at 2 months. I know, look at those legs! NOM NOM NOM. The onesie was something passed down from Will but the shoes were new from one of hubby's co-workers. Yes, a very talented co-worker. I don't think the picture shows how perfectly they matched. Unfortunately, when I saw this picture I remembered that I intended to keep the onesie to save with the shoes but forgot and tagged it for the sale.

Hmmmm ... there's a small chance I could find it and buy it back.


Fabulous Friday — Alabama Chanin

Just look at those outfits. GORGEOUS!!! They are from the Alabama Chanin Spring 2010 collection. Let me just reach into the ol' wallet to pull out ... hmmm, I've got $3 and about 76 cents in change. Not even close. But here's where I pull the old bait and switch.

Me: Honey, can I have $2,000 for a GORGEOUS dress?
Chris: No.
Me: Then how about $24 bucks for the book that will inspire me to make my own?
Chris: Go for it.
Me: Oh, and I'll need another $24 because there's actually two books ... blah, blah, blah.
Chris: Sure, whatever.

Because I want both of Natalie Chanin's books. Somehow I missed the first one, Alabama Stitch Book, published in 2008. And now the second book, Alabama Studio Style, is arriving on shelves now. Chanin is the designer behind first, Project Alabama, and now Alabama Chanin. A darling of the fashion world, she traveled the world and came home to Florence. The designs are wonderful, rich and very unique. I would love to own a T-shirt or two. She's not selfish either, writing these books to share her how-tos. Now, you may or may not know that I am obsessed with craft/design blogs right now. I love reading wonderful folks sharing their wonderful ideas. I check a bunch daily. And I started to notice a trend. Chanin was everywhere. She drove to Nashville to work a project with this gal. She answered a Q &A here. The new book is being reviewed all over. Makes me wish I thought to request a review copy myself. But I found myself wondering, why is Chanin all over my favorite blogs? And then I found this. Being new to the blogsphere, I hadn't seen a "blog tour" before. It's pure marketing genius. The perfect application of this "new" beast called social media. So follow that link and follow Chanin on her blog tour. Or you can follow me to the bookstore.


Pause. Reset.

Today was one of those days. Days that I wished I could climb back in bed and stay there forever. But you can't do that when you have kids. Kids that need food and baths and attention, lots and lots of attention.

The day didn't start out bad. The boys and I were having a good time playing when things crossed the line. Will jumped on me without warning, his chin slamming hard into my face, cracking the frame of my glasses. It hurt, it really hurt. Poor William was okay but started crying because I was hurt. It was an accident and no harm was meant. But it did make the rest of the day spiral downward.

The glasses will have to be fixed or replaced. They are so off center that I've had a headache ever since noon. A headache that made being a loving mommy a little harder ... okay, a lot harder ... than usual. I managed to get us outside for a few minutes even though it is sooooo cold here (because we're weather wimps and it's suppose to be 65 now, not 40). I managed to feed the kids something though I can't recall what. I managed to get both bathed and dressed for bed. It was a long day. And I'm going to bed early.

But guess what. There is a highlight to this day. Something that makes me smile. Because as Will was eating dinner, we decided his birthday cake. And then it all fell into place. The cake, the invites, the theme ... it's going to be awesome.

I'm excited. Today was a good day.

We heart pancakes

Good morning. How about some nice pancakes for breakfast?
What, don't have time to make yummy pancakes? Sure you do.
Think it's too much hassle and only reserved for weekends? Why wait?
You can have pancakes any time you want. Here's the secret:

And it's really not much of a secret. I had heard/read you could freeze a batch of pancakes for future use. Wasn't sure I really believed it would work ... until I tried it. And dang if they don't taste fresh after a pop in the toaster!

Around here (to the folks that live with me), I'm know for making chocolate chip pancakes. Chris commented while eating a recent plateful that these would be my specialty. By which he meant that one day in the great future, Will is going to be remembering his childhood and all the yummy pancakes he ate standing on the step stool next to me as I flipped. Most of the pancakes don't make it to the table. The ones we don't eat go to the freezer.

Now, I could make my pancakes from scratch if I wanted to ... but I'm a Bisquick girl. Measure and go. I've tried other mixes, both more and less expensive, and always come back to the classic yellow box. Their recipe makes 12 to 16 pancakes. It depends on how big or small you make them. I used to cut the recipe in half until I figured out that the other half could go in the freezer. For your family, you may need to make two batches or so to get enough to stash.

How I make my pancakes (it's their recipe)

2 cups Bisquick mix
1 cup milk plus a little bit (I like my pancakes a little thinner)
2 eggs

Another secret ... on the box under the recipe they list variations. I like mine "supreme" so I add

2 tbsp sugar
2 tsp banking powder
vanilla (I don't measure my vanilla. Start with a tsp and go from there)

Here's where you could add 1/2 cup chocolate chips to the bowl. Instead, I sprinkle the chips on as the pancakes are cooking. Better to control the distribution of chocolate. Will is especially fond of this part of the process and insists on taste testing the chocolate chips every time to insure quality standards are being meet.

After we've enjoyed our pancakes, the leftovers go into the freezer. The next day or next week, I just take one or two out, pop them in the toaster and in just a few seconds, we're enjoying hot, yummy pancakes. The toaster even melts the chocolate chips just right. Add some scrambled eggs, fruit and a glass of milk and it's a nice and balanced way to start the day.

Psst ... Betty Crocker has some cute pancake placemats for free download here.