Friday, April 29, 2011

The Royal Wedding

I was 4 and a half when Charles and Diana got married so I really don't remember much of the hoopla surrounding their wedding, and until recently I wasn't very interested in the comings and goings of Wills and Kate.  But then, after talking to some colleagues who are complete Anglophiles, I allowed myself to get swept up in the royal wedding fervor. 

I was not up at 4:00am, I can say that, but when Nate came into my room at 5:45 I flipped on the TV in time to see Charles and Camilla enter the Abbey.  I had to concede the TV to Nate at this time, but he soon lost interest in Toy Story 3 (I don.t understand why... he's only see it 1,000,000,000,001 times in the last 3 weeks) and I was able to watch again.

I saw the ceremony, the recessional, the carriage ride, and then one of the two kisses on the balcony.  I loved Kate's dress, but thought her flowers should have been a little bit bigger.  My husband says I am lame.  I don't really care, it is fun.

When I got to work there was a full blown wedding party underway in the staff lounge with a TV showing the wedding coverage, tea sandwiches, tea breads, and even royal wedding tea.

More Etsy Fun -- The Royal Wedding Edition

A fun collection of British themed goodies from Etsy that I have titled "Cool Britannia."

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Nate's Easter Basket

I am really proud of the Easter Basket I created for Nate this year for a number of reasons.  One, he loved everything in it.  Two, I did not spend a ton of money, so it was a pretty frugal endeavor, and Three, there was no candy in it for me to eat!

The Contents:

  • The basket and the "grass" are ours reused every year
  • Just Go to Bed by Mercer Mayer ($3.99)
  • A Toy Story jump rope ($1.00)
  • Side walk chalk ($4 on end of season clearance)
  • Non-Spill Bubble Cup with bubbles ($2.49 end of season clearance)
  • Kaleidoscope ($.62 on clearance)
  • Fisher Price Wheelies Train ($1.00)
  • Easter Thomas with Jelly Bean Car ($9.95)
  • Plastic Chicken Eggs (2 for $1.00)
  • Assorted mini trains and trucks (6 @ $.39 each)
 Grand total: $26.21

Not too bad.  The jump rope I found at Goodwill new in the package.  The bubble cup, bubbles, and side walk chalk were all end of season clearance last year.  I did splurge on the Easter Thomas but Nate is crazy for all things Thomas.    

Friday, April 22, 2011

Love Your Mother

Mother Earth that is.  In celebration of Earth Day I thought I would share some of the easy ways to help the Earth and consume less.

1.  Cloth, cloth cloth.  This applies to napkins and towels mostly.  That was how we started.  I extended it to diaper as well until we had some diaper rash issues that would not be controlled in cloth.  In addition, I use cloth rounds in place of cotton balls for taking up make up.  Also, I replaced disposable tampons and pads with cloth pads.

2.  Travel Mugs and Reusable Water Bottles.  Not only will you save the Earth with this one, but you will always have a beverage with you when you get thirsty and you will save money too,

3.  Reusable bags.  These can be found anywhere from Target to the grocery store.  There are super cute ones on Etsy or you could make your own.  Not to mention that they are plentiful at Goodwill and the Salvation Army.  I will fully admit that I am not so good about remembering to bring these into the super market with me.  But I keep one or two Baggu bags in my purse at all times that way I can use them when I run to the drug store or the Wawa.

4.  Buy Earth friendly cleaning products... or make your own.  I am a huge fame of both Method and Seventh Generation cleaning products.  I also like Simple Green.  I have tried using vinegar and baking soda and making my own cleaning products and I am not been satisfied with the results.

5.  Recycle as Much as Possible.  Whether this means reusing the jars that baby food or tomato sauce come in, or putting as much as possible into the recycling bin, do it.

There are, of course, other ways to help the Earth.  Drive less, plant more things, get a rain barrel, time your showers, compost, etc.  But the 5 easy changes listed above can get you moving in the right direction easily and painlessly.

Thursday, April 21, 2011

A Day in the Life of Me -- Work Day Edition

4:28 -- Wake up from Horrible Dream, go back to sleep

5:35 -- Nate wakes me up and asks if he can come into my room.  He gets in bed with me and watchs Toy Story 3 while I eek out another 45 minutes of sleep

6:20 -- Alarm goes off.  Get up, shower, brush teeth.

6:40 -- Start to get dressed, do make up, do hair

6:55 -- Get Nate dressed.  His diaper has leaked and now there is a big pee spot all over my bed.  Strip bed including mattress pad.

7:00 -- Gather up supplies to be taken to my mom's house

7:05 -- Go down to kitchen and start getting everyone breakfast.  The night before I always fill a sippy cup with milk and put it in the fridge so Nate can get it himself in the morning.  Get nate settled at the table with his raisins.  Feed the dogs, give the dogs fresh water, give the dogs their celery, let the dogs out.  Put my breakfast (leftover muffins) in the toaster oven turn on the water for tea.

7:10 -- Let the dogs in.  Start making Nate's waffle.

7:15 -- Turn off the TV, try reasoning with Nate about sitting and eating breakfast while trying to eat my own breakfast.  Neither of these things works, so he get s a time out.

7:20 -- Nate is back at the table eating his waffle.  I finish my breakfast, clean up, make my tea in a travel mug, put away dry dishes, toad up the bags and take them out to the car, change Nate's shirt, put on his shoes and socks.

7:40 -- Lock up the house, give the dogs a treat and get in the car.

8:00 -- Drop Nate off at my mom's house

8:20 -- Leave my mom's house and head to work

8:30 - 5:30 -- Work

5:30 -- Go pick up Nate

6:00 -- Head home

6:30 -- Unload the car, unpack all the bags and start the bed time process: bath, PJs, books

7:30 -- Nate is in bed

7:35 -- Start dinner for me -- Chicken Tikka Masala, Basmati Rice, Peas, and Samosas

8:00 -- Settle in to eat dinner and watch Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 1.

11:00 -- Bed.

Thursday, April 07, 2011

Junior Mint Brownies

My friend Meredith is in the states this week and we were able to catch up over dinner the other night.  it was not a fancy affair.  I made a baked ziti, a Caesar salad and junior mint brownies for dessert. 

The ziti is pretty self explanatory, so is the Caesar salad really, but I wanted to share the junior mint brownie recipe because it is so good.  It originally came from Cooking Light so it is a relatively guiltless treat is eaten in moderation.

  • 1/4 cup butter or stick margarine
  • 32 (about 3 ounces) creamy, small-size mints in pure chocolate (such as Junior Mints)
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt
  • 2/3 cup sugar
  • 1/3 cup unsweetened cocoa
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 large egg white


  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  • Coat bottom of an 8-inch square baking pan with cooking spray.
  • Combine butter and mints in a 2-cup glass measure; microwave at high 30 seconds or until soft. Stir until smooth, and set aside.
  • Lightly spoon flour into a dry measuring cup, and level with a knife. 
  • Combine flour, soda, and salt in a bowl. 
  • Combine sugar, cocoa, egg, and egg white in a large bowl; beat at medium speed of a mixer until well-blended. Add mint mixture; beat well. Add flour mixture; beat at low speed just until blended. 
  • Pour batter into prepared pan. 
  • Bake at 350 degrees for 20 minutes or until a wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean; cool completely on a wire rack.

Wednesday, April 06, 2011

The ABCs of Me

I found this over at 11th Heaven's Homemaking Haven and thought it would be fun.

Age: 34

Bed Size: Queen

Chore You Hate: Dusting... it seems so futile

Dogs: A black lab and a chocolate lab mix

Essential Start of Your Day: A Hot Beverage, usually green tea

Favorite Color: Red

Gold or Silver: Silver, white gold or platinum

Height: 5'3" (on a good day)

Instruments You Play: Flute and piccilo (although it has been years since I picked up either)

Job Title: Librarian

Kids: Nate, 3 years old

Live: on planet Earth (most of the time)

Mom's Name: Mom (sorry not giving out that Privileged information)

Nicknames: Never really had one other than "moll" but I don't think that counts

Overnight Hospital Stays: I had my tonsils out when I was in second grade and my C-section

Pet Peeve: People with an over-inflated sense of entitlement

Quote From a Movie: "It's a hell of a day at sea sir!" (Overboard)

Right- or Left-Handed: Right

Siblings: zero (and I loved every minute of  being an only child)

Time You Wake Up: too early... usually 5:30 when Nate gets up

Underwear: yes, I generally wear underwear

Veggie You Dislike: Radishs

What Makes You Run Late: A toddler with his own ideas and plans

X-Rays You Have Had: Dental, Ultra Sounds, chest, ankle, foot

Yummy Food You Make: Roasted chicken, chocolate Guiness cake, cinnamon chip scones.

Zoo Animal You Like Best: The Otters