Tag Archives: kids

Under the Sea AKA My Baby’s 6 AKA I Wanna Be Sedated

11 Feb

My first-born turned 6 last Sunday and I’m having feelings about it. I am in disbelief at how quickly he’s growing up. I wish I could hold on to every moment, remember every silly joke and the belly laugh the follows, and hold him in my arms like I did when he was tiny…but I am also incredibly proud of the little man-child he has become. His kindness, his generous heart, and his loving spirit are daily reminders that growing up also means growing within.

He asked for a “Under the Sea” party theme this year and he even reminded me on Wednesday that if I didn’t start decorating soon I would run out of time (totally my son!) I like making the party look and feel homemade but I don’t have a lot of time now that the shop is open and I work 6 days a week so I chose a few simple crafts that would make a big impact with little investment.

I employed the use of a few rolls of crepe paper and created a homespun water wonderland for his Birthday lunch. I was thrilled to find our favorite local toy store, Just Kidding Around, carried the Djeco paper fish decor I saw on Amazon the night before. I added some handmade yarn pom poms as bubbles and hung them from our chandelier. They also provided the fishing game we used as part of our scavenger hunt.

Paper Fish and Yarn Poms

Paper Fish and Yarn Poms

I am a huge fan of Beistle festooning…what a festive name!…so I used 3 colors of it to create “waves.”

Crepe Paper & Festooning Seaweed & Waves

Crepe Paper & Festooning Seaweed & Waves

I also saw a cute jellyfish craft online that inspired my crepe paper jellyfish. Instead of their suggested muffin cups I used coffee filters and layered them to be fluffier. Tape, coffee filters, and crepe paper – can’t get any easier than that.

Paper Poms and Jellyfish

Paper Poms and Jellyfish

With a bag of candy melts and an ocean-themed mold from the craft store, I created quick Fish lollipops.

Fish Lollipops

Fish Lollipops

For his cake, I colored each layer of a white cake a shade of blue, colored the icing blue, then scraped a tool along the surface once frosted to emulate waves. I added a few Swedish Fish and some Pearl Dragees to complete the look.

Make a Wish!

Make a Wish!

I used two bamboo skewers, some bakers twine and a bit of felt to quickly stitch the cake bunting.

Homemade Fishy Cake

Homemade Fishy Cake

I stopped by my local fave, Rock Paper Scissors, to pick up two yards of themed fabric to use as a backdrop and table cloth. It adds to the theme without committing time or energy to a project, and it is reusable for a future craft!

A little yard of fabric goes a long way

A little yard of fabric goes a long way

His “other cake” was a chocolate fish I stumbled upon in the Valentine’s Day section of Target the week before. I added a number 6 sparkler and sang the Persian version of Happy Birthday as I brought it out to him.

Chocolate Fish (the hole is from the "6" Sparkler)

Chocolate Fish (the hole is from the “6” Sparkler)

Hunter’s expression when he came home to the decor was priceless! 🙂 He even got his wish…a new pet fish!

His Birthday present: Max the fish

His Birthday present: Max the fish

We had a wonderful time celebrating his special day! It was more low key than previous years – if you’ve been following the blog awhile, you know I really toned it down from my months of prep back in my SAHM days.

I am still correcting myself when people ask me how old he is. Six seems so “old” …where did my chunky monkey go?

Hunter at 6 months

Hunter at 6 months

He will always be my Hunter Boo…even though he has already planned his wedding, named his children, and decided where he wants to live when he’s 30. I am one lucky momma!   

Keepin’ Up – Mother’s Lament

18 Feb

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Seriously guys, how cute are my kids? Right? I know. I made them, so…

Wait, that’s not what this post is about. This train of thought began when I was like “Oh I should share the Valentine’s Day photo on my blog” but then realized 4 days ago was more like 4 weeks ago (in interweb years we had already moved on to St Patricks Day themed photograms.)

So I’m late. Like, for everything as usual since the kids graced me with their photogenic little beings.

And as I type this I watch the DVR’d Grammys, dancing along with the audience as Rhianna and Ziggy Marley and Sting and Bruno Mars take the stage. I witness something so magical and moving…that the rest of the world experienced over a week ago. I can’t even real-time tweet #Grammys because the Twitosphere has evidently moved on to #AlecBaldwin. Fair enough.

Yet the stirring Grammy performance has me tuning into my iTunes account, feverishly downloading last year’s music (which I never heard since the Amy Winehouse Pandora station I listen to doesn’t play much of The Lumineers.) I stumble upon a song called “Bird’s Lament” that my husband has referenced and I think – HOLY F-ING HECK this song IS SO AU COURANT and also awesome.

After a bit of research we realize it was written in 2004 by a guy named Moondog who was born in 1916 (and chose to live as a homeless Jazz musician on the streets of NYC). 2004 = BK (before kids) so I give up on staying current or using my kids as my excuse why I am not, sip my Shasta, and publish my belated post. #moondog #motherslament #aretweepsstillhashtaggingyall

Procrastination Project – LEGO Jar Head

17 Jan

Tonight I was assigned Recycling Duty (dragging our weekly mega bucket of recycling to the icy curb, flattening all the Amazon & Fresh Direct boxes then tying with twine) because hubs is on a business trip. Due to my OCD/Sensory-Issues/Preference-To-Not-Touch-Icky-Things I stay far away from this chore under normal circumstances. It took a bit of prepping and pep-rallying to get into trash mode and prior to that shift in mentality I spied a few lonely *clean* glass jars.

Within 2 minutes I transformed the jars into LEGO Minifigure heads for my son’s upcoming LEGO-themed Birthday party. All it took was a quick brushing of yellow paint on the interior and an easily doodled design with black paint pen on the exterior to complete the look. It’s a shame the project didn’t take longer as I was hoping to prolong the inevitable (putting on my big girl pants and taking out the trash).

Please note that if you are doing this with a “used” jar (i.e. marinara sauce jar) then wash & dry the jar thoroughly then clean it with alcohol to ensure the paint affixes to the glass. 

LEGOhead

Prior to posting this, I Googled to see if anyone else had a “Jar Head” moment and learned someone had this very idea using baby food jars which are a more accurate shape. Her method was different and I like the look of interior painted glass better (although her idea of spray painting is much quicker if you have several to paint.) I prefer the size of these canning jars versus baby food jars because they are more practical for my needs, such as holding silverware on the party food table, but the baby food jars she uses are great as favors or Kid-Assisted DIY.

In my Google search I also came across this Etsy shop full of beautiful painted jars in home decorator colors and in my quest to promote fellow Etsians I wanted to share. Happy Painting/Shopping! 🙂

Autumn Serenade

30 Sep

What a poetic title! It’s the name of a classic song I listened to in the car today. I wanted to entitle this post “Fall Fell” but it sounded too tragic.

So it’s cold now. Which is appropriate because we had exactly one week of Fall which is our northeastern allotment.

Perhaps I am too quick to judge. We haven’t lived here in 3 years but I am rapidly recalling reluctance to wear winter warmies (AKA dress my kids in coats and scarves). We had a reminder yesterday of the wails of a toddler who is not ready to accept defeat (read: cover exposed skin to protect from frostbite).

We trudged ahead, though, and muffled him with his scarf so we could head out the door for Apple Picking. I always laugh *maniacally* when something we plan “for the kids” becomes something we force upon them — you know, for their memory’s sake. I prep myself for this to be the case and it’s such a relief when it’s not.

Thankfully, Alstede Farms in Chester NJ delivered and the kids were happy and the adults were less frazzled than usual and it was Fall for one beautiful evening on the farm.

And now we are enjoying apples 9 ways – everything tastes better when you pick it yourself (or when it’s free…am I right?)

Easter Tradition – Getting a Tattoo

7 Apr

Okay I confess…that’s not an Easter tradition and this will likely be the only year I get “Easter ink” done.

Talking through it - distraction technique

But since you’re here and you’re reading, look what I did!

Double checking placement pre-ink

I can not have any more children because there are no wrists left to commemorate them on. I’m okay with that. I’m more than okay with that.

Being told what to do if I need to pass out

As it turns out, I have met my threshold of carving-designs-into-my-skin-for-self-expression pain.

Pretending to be really tough

Not as tough as I picture myself to be.

Bracing myself - it's ouchy

Now I have a tattoo on each wrist.

Left wrist - Hunter

As I like to say, the placement is symbolic of the shackles of motherhood imprisonment.

Right wrist - Kingston

But in a good way.

Days Leading up to the Chocolate Bunny Hunt

6 Apr

A friend staying in our Guest House Caboose noticed my overcrowded pastel display and said, “Oh I didn’t realize you guys celebrated Easter.” I could have taken “you guys” = heathens or “you guys” = your family so I chose the latter. Our mini-men will not be deprived an Eastery youth, like I often felt until Mom started leaving Cadbury Creme Eggs on my nightstand.

Today’s nod to Easter was the coloring of eggs, toddler style (adorning eggs with stickers then dropping them into a colorful solution before nap-time):

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Brothers on a Bench

1 Mar

Brothers on a Bench

Kingston (2), the smiley get-along-kid with Hunter (4), tightly clutching his toys and half-pouting. Such an accurate depiction of their daily interactions this week.

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