Real quick…

g&g

I’m pretty sure there’s nothing sweeter than hearing your husband sing “How do I live without you” to your son. When he thinks nobody can hear him.

Lucky girl. Lucky baby.

Enjoy the weather, ya’ll. I promise I’ll have a recap of the G man’s party this week!

DIY braided chain necklace

I saw this necklace on Studs and Pearls a while back, and I’ve finally made my own!! This necklace is easy. I swear. The directions may look complicated, but if you try not to over-think it, it will be a snap to make!

I tried to photograph my own step-by-step instructions, and I learned a few things. 1. I still can’t quite figure out my camera, the lighting aspect specifically. 2. It’s hard to take your own photos, next time I need Franker. 3. Maybe I should just link to the originator’s website, so you can see a better tutorial. Hey, good idea. Feel free to check it out here.

First thing’s first: what do you need?

necklace - materials

1. Pliers 2. embroidery floss 3. chain 4. jump rings 5. lobster clasp (not pictured: tape, scissors)

Continue reading

Almost party time!

triple birthday

Holy schmoley, it’s going to be a crazy week! It’s triple birthday week! No, I don’t have triplets (eek). But Gav was born on Franker’s birthday. And Franker happens to have a twin brother, Mike. So the three amigos will be celebrating their birthdays together this saturday. So needless to say I have mucho to do to prepare.

I don’t want to give away any surprises before the party, but get ready for some DIY posts next week. And definitely a million pictures of little G smashing his cake. And then rubbing it in his hair. That will happen.

Although I’m running around like a crazy lady even more than usual, we had such an exciting time in Chicago today for Gavin’s 1st birthday photos. I CANNOT wait to see how they turned out. Our photographers at Square Mouth Studios are seriously amazing.

This is the only sneak peak I have of some behind-the-scenes action:

photosesh

The weather in Chicago has been 40s and rainy for the past week. Today was a little sliver of sunshine, thank goodness! Perfect weather, sandwiched between days and days of rain. Someone’s looking out, and I just want to say THANKS.

Weekends, you are never quite long enough. Work on that.

Clarisonic Mia review

mia

Ok, real talk you guys. I have a confession to make.

I don’t always wash my face before bed. Yes, that means that I go to sleep with my makeup on my freaking face. I know it’s just about the worst thing I can do to my skin. I know it’s pretty gross. Yeah, yeah yeah…I know.

But, I’m trying to do better.

Whenever I decide to “do better”, it usually involves buying something. Come to think of it, whenever I decide to do worse, I buy something too. Part of my charm?

Anyway, the point of this is to let you know that I bought a Clarisonic Mia! Way behind the times on this one. I hadn’t researched it before I bought it, but if I had, I would have learned it’s basically known as the best beauty investment around these days.

I didn’t research it, and the Clarisonic fairy didn’t drop one in my lap. So, how did I finally crawl out from under a rock and buy one of these gems? There I was, minding my own business, purchasing my standard Bobbi Brown foundation. I noticed a box sitting out of place on the counter. My friend picked it up and said “this is the best ever, it’s changed my skin.” I looked at her skin. Flawless. So I bought it. I’m an easy sell, what can I say?

It’s turqoise and it’s lovely.

Basically, it really deep cleans your skin. The brush is gentle, but you still feel like it’s getting all up in your pores. I haven’t seen a huge difference in my skin yet, but I feel a difference. My face is smooth and soft. And I swear when I put my lotion on after I wash, it really sinks into my skin instead of just sitting on top of it.

I’m a new woman! With a freshy fresh face. Next challenge – applying my eye cream every day. And taking my vitamins…

Sometimes being an adult is annoying.

Dear Son,

DeGeorge Maternity

My sweet boy,

Your 1st birthday is in less than three weeks. I can’t believe how fast the time is flying by. This time last year, I was anxiously awaiting your arrival. I didn’t know if you were a boy a girl. I didn’t know if you would have Dadda’s eyes or my smile. All I knew was that I loved you. With my whole heart, and then some.

I truly had no idea how my life was about to change forever. I would sit in your rocking chair and wonder if you would like the birds Grammy painted on your walls. Would you recognize Gizmo’s bark? Would Dadda and I really be able to be parents? We still felt like little kids.

You loved to have little dance parties when I was ready for bed each night. You would make the same movements over and over, and I never want to forget what that felt like. And so far, I haven’t. Sometimes I still think I feel them.

Last year, I truly did not know what pure, unconditional love was all about. But I did believe in love before first sight. I knew I loved you more than it was possible to love. It’s a deep down in your bones kind of feeling. And there’s really no way to describe it.

When you finally arrived, I knew what all the hard times were for. So I would understand how lucky I am to have you. Speaking of…this Ben Folds song was one I’ve sung to you since the day you were born. And even now, one year later, it makes me cry a little every time I sing it to you (and not just because I’m that bad of a singer)…

I don’t get many things right the first time
In fact, I am told that a lot
Now I know all the wrong turns, the stumbles and falls
Brought me here.
And where was I before the day, I first saw your lovely face
Now I see it everyday.
And I know.
That I am, I am, I am
The luckiest.

We love you, little man. Never forget it.

While cleaning out my phone…

Oh. my. gah you guys. I was cleaning out my phone today and I came across this gem.

nursing schedule

Since the day Gavin was born, I kept a running log of when I nursed and how long it lasted. In those early days, I remember thinking all I did was feed the baby. Probably because that was all I did! 260 minutes on this particular day. That equals 4.33 hours.

When I look at this list, I feel a few things. I feel kinda sad that I don’t have that special time with him anymore. I feel kinda proud of myself for sticking with it for 4.5 months. But let me tell you. Right now, I feel really glad I have some freedom back. Because it’s hard, yo.

I deleted many random notes. But I’m keeping this note for.ev.er.

New series: Write this down

How many times a week does someone say “You know the best restaurant that just opened in ______? You have to try it…” or “These______are the best ever, if you ever need to buy some, check it out….”?

Before, I would get all these great tips: where to buy things, what to do for fun, books to check out, etc. I would always think to myself “ok, don’t forget that. You’ll use this info someday.” And then I would proceed to completely forget about it 5 minutes later. It’s true, if you don’t write it down, you will forget.

My simple solution: I always keep a notebook with me. At all times. That way, when my coworker tells me the new restaurant in wicker park has the best drinks, I know exactly where I want to go when my girlfrands and I are looking for a fun drinky spot. If it weren’t for that info, we’d end up going to an old standby for lack of a fresh option. See? Word of mouth is my favorite way to learn about new places and things.

So, today I start a new series called “Write this down.” Just a random list of things I’ve recently heard are a must-try. Some will be my personal finds, but most will be from others. Keep the suggestions coming, I can’t get enough of little tidbits, it’s a sickness really.

  1. Guess who has awesome glasses for only $95 (including prescription lenses)? Warby Parker. More to come on this, I actually just bought a pair, and I’m basically in love.
  2. The Stationery Studio has really cute personalized embossers. What are embossers? When you have to send out a million invitations and cards all the time, writing your name and address becomes quite the drag. The embosser is fast and oh so fancy. A little too grown up, you say? I say just grown up enough.
  3. Looking for some new inexpensive artwork? Check out Society 6. But be warned, you can get lost there for days…
  4. H&M has baby clothes. I felt like everyone already knew that, but whenever I tell someone where I got Gavin’s stuff, they’re shocked. So, there you go!
  5. I’m pretty sure I’m way behind on this one, but I’ve been told repeatedly that I need to read Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn.

Peanut butter white chocolate chip (and m&m) cookies

Cookies

Some days, you just need a chewy cookie.

This cookie recipe is full of good things – peanut butter, brown sugar, white chocolate chips, and m&ms. It would be hard to make a bad cookie with this cast and crew. So I take no credit when I say these are the yummiest cookies I’ve ever made. For reals. Yummiest.

The brown sugar and the peanut butter keep the cookies nice and chewy. Let me tell you, there is nothing I despise more than crispy cookies. Besides Jon Bon Jovi. I really can’t stand that guy.

If you’re more of a chocolate chip fan, you might want to add more to the recipe. I appreciate a non-chocolate bite every now and then, but some people prefer loaded cookies.

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter, softened
  • 1 cup peanut butter (I have this thing, it’s awesome for measuring peanut butter)
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup light brown sugar
  • 1 large egg
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1 tablespoon milk
  • 1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 3/4 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup white chocolate chips
  • 1/2 cup milk chocolate m&ms

How to:

1. Preheat the oven to 350

2. Using an electric mixer, mix together the peanut butter, sugar, brown sugar and butter in a large bowl.

3. Mix in the egg, vanilla extract and milk.

4. In a separate bowl, mix together the flour, baking soda, baking powder and salt.

5. Slowly add the dry mixture to the wet mixture.

6. Add the chocolate chips and m&ms and stir thoroughly.

7. Use a spoon to ball the cookie dough. Drop the balls on the cookie sheet and flatten slightly.

8. Bake for 10-12 minutes.

Side note: If you’re thinking of beach season, bring these to work to share with your chubby friends. Because if you leave them in the house, you will eat all of them. Not like I’m speaking from experience.

But I am.

DIY necklace organizer

I love my jewels. The 5-year-old in me would be pretty impressed with the sparklies I have accumulated over the years. But, until a few days ago, I had a little problem. My baubles were in such disarray that it was difficult to remember what I even had. A cluttered jewelry set-up makes for a cluttered…jewelry set-up. I needed some mayjah organization up in here.

I feel like there are a ton of cute options on Pinterest right now for jewelry organization. Since I have a problem (or a gift, you could say) for acquiring too many necklaces, I was looking for a functional way to display my jewelry so it would be easy to see what I had.

What I didn’t want:

1. I didn’t want to keep knocking all surrounding jewelry behind my dresser every time I tried to pick out a necklace.

2. I didn’t want to shove my pretties in a drawer or closet. It seemed cruel.

3. I didn’t want to overthink it. Oops.

So, here’s my solution. I give you the towel rack necklace organizer!

I bought a towel rack and some plastic shower curtain hangy things (I think that’s the technical term). Franker hung the rack next to my vanity, and then I hung up my necklaces. Pretty straightforward. But I’m pretty in love with the results! Not only is it functional, it looks pretty hanging on my wall. Like a piece of art or something.

As for my bracelets and earrings, I kept the jewelry trees I’ve had for years and de-cluttered as best as I could.

I’m loving the new set-up. Today, I wanted to wear my turquoise bib necklace. So guess what I did? I just unhooked it from the necklace rack and wore it. That was it. No innocent bystanders being shoved off a dresser. No swearing because I had to re-adjust six other pieces of jewelry to reach my turquoise friend.

Ah, bliss I tell ya.

Oh, side note: We have finally purchased a DSLR camera! So get ready for some better picys on the blog. I was a slightly obnoxious picture-taker before. But now, mwahaha. Watch out.

Funfetti dip recipe. You’re welcome.

Do you like funfetti cake? Do you like dips? Do you like to eat pretty things? GOOD. Because this recipe for funfetti dip is all three of these things, plus easy peasy to make. I’m not a total sweets girl. Every time someone learns I don’t love chocolate more than life itself, they look at me like I’m an alien.

But cake…mmmm cake. Yeah, I’d do just about anything for that.

dip - ingredients

You need:

  • One box of funfetti cake
  • 2 cups of plain nonfat yogurt
  • 1 1/2 cups of cool whip
  • Something to dip…into the dip
  • a big bowl
  • a big spoon

dip - mix

Combine all three ingredients into a bowl. Mix it up until all of the lumps are out. If you want, you can refrigerate for a bit before serving so it’s nice and chilled.

dip - finished

You can add sprinkles to the top to make it fancy. And then guess what? You’re done. I served mine with animal crackers and ginger snaps. But you can use anything you want. Fruit kabobs would be presh.

I think next time I’ll use strawberry yogurt, or maybe a different cake mix…for all of you chocolate lovers out there, add some chocolate chips. Go crazy. Live yo life.