Monday, December 31, 2007

RAMBLING: Balls Dropping and Promises Made

It's time to usher in a New Year! And while 2007 held a lot of great memories for me, there are many I'm ready to move on from. I'm not one for resolutions, but I do usually try to make little promises to myself. No one is perfect, we're all striving to do better in one way or another, and to me resolutions should be our acknowledgments of where we fall short and come with a plan to make it all better.

I thought maybe if I put them on paper and let the world see them, I might hold myself more accountable to them. So, here goes:

  • Count to Five More Often -- I have a SHORT fuse and I need to make it a bit longer. I am very proud of some of my recent methods of remaining calm in the face of stress. I only hope to make those methods even stronger in 2008.
  • Stop and Smell the Roses -- I don't take the time necessary to revel in life sometimes. I have an amazing daughter and husband and I need to enjoy every second with them. I hope in 2008 to slow down just a tad and enjoy life's moments more.
  • Be More Selfish -- For some people being more selfless is a common resolution, but I'm already pretty selfless. I put myself just about last on every priority list. I need to learn to say no and do what I need to do for ME a little more!

I also aim to blog a bit more. I had great intentions when I started this site. And while I've been better about updating it then any other site I've ever had, it's still not something I do often enough. I hope everyone has a safe and happy new year!

Onward and Upward,

Tuesday, December 25, 2007

RAMBLING: Meet My Mini Me -- Ms. Chatterbox

Someone flicked a switch for LLB and she talks up a storm now. And I mean CONSTANTLY. Mommy sit here, Mommy for you, Mommy bless you ... the list goes on. The way she says Mommy could literally melt my heart and she's truly the most loving little girl.

She's at that point though where when she points out something, whatever it may be, you must acknowledge what she's saying OR else she will repeat it over and over until you do. Sometimes it's quite painful, really.

But I love seeing how her brain has developed and how she's able to put together sentences and statements now. For instance, just last night we were driving home and my husband said something quite silly, I laughed at him, he laughed, she laughed her fake "I'm laughing because everyone else is" laugh and then said "FUNNY" with complete sarcasm. We died. We asked her if she was saying "funny" because were honestly shocked she said it and she said, "You're FUNNY!" Watching her understand and process things is the most amazing part.

Doesn't This Thing Have a Mute Button?,

Saturday, December 22, 2007

RAMBLING: Baby Fever And Not the Temperature Kind

I have baby fever. I feel like everyone around me is pregnant and if not planning on being pregnant soon. I have been doing a stroller piece for the Celebrity Baby Blog and some of them come with amazing-looking bassinets. Not to mention all the new baby products that come out everyday.

I THINK I want another baby. But I don't KNOW if do. And that's where I sit. I thought LLB would be an only child when I got pregnant with her. I'm an only child, and initially thought I would not have an only child and then just before becoming pregnant realized the "benefits." I'm a working mom, say what you want about that, but I LOVE what I do and I LOVE my child, too. I feel like I have the best of each world. I knew that being a working mom meant my attention was already slightly split and having more then one child would mean even more division. This wasn't an idea I liked.

I decided early on, that even IF we wanted another baby we would wait until LLB was 2. I wanted to wait until 2 for a couple of reasons. If you haven't figured it out, I'm a fairly high strung individual. I'm just wired that way. I'm slightly OCD and always computing something in my brain. I wanted to see what my sweet girl would be like at the terrible 2s before I decided to have another. I also wanted to see what I was like dealing with her. Could I handle her? On a good day yes, on a bad day I feel like a terrible mom.

I like that right now I can focus all my energy and passion and ... EVERYTHING on her. I also am not sure I can handle the "stress" of another baby. I love my husband dearly but he's not much help and lord knows with 2 kids I would need his help. We live in a VERY small house, hubby reminds me everyday that people have multiple kids in 1 bedroom apartments all the time. I'm not that kind of person. I don't just decide to have a baby to have a baby, I plan, I lay it out and a 2 bedroom house with 4 inhabitants is not in my plan.

I also know that my baby fever is a result of my baby becoming a full fledged toddler. She's not my sweet, little, cuddly baby anymore. And I need to make sure that I don't decide to have another because I'm hoping to "rewind" time. It doesn't work that way.

Also, LLB was a DREAM baby. Seriously, we were extremely lucky, I think the only problem we had with her prior to 15 months was that she didn't sleep through the night (I'm talking about 10-12 hour stretches) until sometime around 9-12 months. That was it. I know the chances of baby #2 being as good are minimal, I'm not that lucky.

My pregnancy wasn't bad but it wasn't a dream, I had Gestational Diabetes and was VERY uncomfortable at the end. I also became very antsy, I'm an instant gratification person and waiting for the baby to appear was killing me. I'd hope with baby #2 this wouldn't be the case, but who knows.

Lastly, how often can you "tempt" fate. I saw a baby at Best Buy yesterday who was disabled, a beautiful little girl, and she made my heart leap. I was always worried that LLB would have some sort of disability, and I don't know if I can trust that baby #2 wouldn't have something wrong with it. This sounds incredibly vain, I know, I promise I don't intend it that way. I am seriously not cut out to handle a special needs child, and I think it takes a lot of personal insight to know that about yourself and openly admit it. I admire those parents who raise above the disorders and raise amazing kids. I just don't think I could.

Sorry for the brain dump, but all this leads me back to... when do you know you want another? Does it just click one day? UGH! I know that I have approx a year to make this decision, as I don't want them too far apart. After 2008 I think this shop will close down.

Baby, Baby, Baby,

Friday, December 21, 2007

Thursday, December 20, 2007

RAMBLING: Visions of New Computers Dance in My Head

The hubby offered to buy me an iMac I've been eying for Christmas. I want it badly, but I have a PowerBook and a PC that runs pretty well. I'm becoming more and more used to Macs but I still have some issues on them and overall can work twice as efficiently on a PC. I'm a computer nerd, I know how to fix many problems that arise and I get asked for help all the time. When it comes to the Mac I don't feel like an expert.

But as a result I have no idea what I WANT for christmas. My list is pretty dismal and even what's on my list will be hard to get. Here's what I have:

Beverly Hills, 90210 Season 3 DVD
I didn't buy it the day it came out because I figured it was an easy XMas Bonus, so it better be under my tree. I'm an addict, what can I say?

UGG Dakota Slipper
These look absolutely comfy and would be so cute with basic outfits. I love that my feet would be warm without the whole boot, overheating my poor ankles and legs.

UGG® Australia 'Cardy' Classic Boot
The crochet UGG has slipped under my radar, I wasn't sure I wanted them. Considering they would look colossal on my size 9 feet. Then I saw these! I'm in love. Too bad they're practically sold out EVERYWHERE.

See, I told you it was a sad list. I'm truly at the point in my life where it's like what do you get the person who has EVERYTHING and if she doesn't have it, she buys it for herself!?!?! The good news is, the hubby can do no wrong. As long as he puts thought into it I love everything he gets me.

What is on YOUR list for Christmas? Do share!

Santa Baby,

Tuesday, December 18, 2007

RAMBLING: It's Elmo Time -- UPDATE

LLB loved Sesame Street: When Elmo Grows Up. She sat still the ENTIRE time. And even said hello and goodbye to some of the characters as they walked on and left the stage. I've never seen her so captivated by something and I was shocked at how well she behaved.

Needless to say I'll be getting us more tickets to Sesame Street shows. I'm not sure she's ready for The Wiggles yet.

Growing Up Is Fun to Do,

Sunday, December 16, 2007

RAMBLING: It's Elmo Time

Today we are taking LLB to see Sesame Street Live: When Elmo Grows Up. I think she's going to love it. Elmo has been a recognizable character for her for some time now. But just in the past few weeks she's become OBSESSED. She'll bring me the remote and "demand" Elmo. The joy of a DVR is that I have the show set to record everytime it's on, so there's always a couple of episodes stored up.

This is the ONLY show that she really has any interest in. And she will request that I fast forward through parts that don't involve our little red, furry friend. So all in all she prob only watches like a 1/2 hour of the show, if even.

I am sure she won't sit still, but the price was CHEAP and I figured it was worth trying and seeing how she does. I'll let you know how the show went later. Just wish us luck!

That's Elmo's World,

Saturday, December 15, 2007

RAMBLING: Greetings From the Other Side

You might be wondering what the heck I mean by that. I can't recall how much I've discussed this on here, and rather then search I'm just going to fill you in. I was laid off from my job at AOL back in October. It was nothing personal just a change in direction, but it truly did rock my world.

I've been with AOL since 2001!!!!! That's a long time, and I started as an intern, so my ENTIRE career has been at AOL. My professional identity is wrapped in their walls and I truly feel a sense of loss right now. The good news is I feel a slight sense of relief today as I type this. Friday, the 14th was my last day, as I was kept around on a transition team for 2 months to help tie up a project.

I didn't blog at all this week because when I wasn't finishing that project I was slightly depressed and I needed to refocus and recenter. The good news is I'm back. I don't know officially what's next with me. As I find out I'll clue you all in. But right now I'm just looking forward to the holidays with my family and a little "down time."

I'll have more time then ever to blog, so expect to see me posting on here quite a bit more and of course on my other sites as well. I'll miss AOL but I know this is what's best and that there is something BIG out there waiting for me.

I've Made the Jump,

Friday, December 7, 2007

ATW: Round-Up Week of December 3

Yeah, I suck at doing this weekly. But hey this was a good week, I got a lot of bylines! Check them out.

Get Clickin',

RAMBLING: Jav-ahhhhhhhhhhhhh!

Hello, my name is Bronwyn and I'm addicted to coffee. Please raise your hands if you feel the same way. My love affair with coffee began at a Starbucks in Alexandria when I was a senior in high school. I remember when it opened. Back then I only went a couple times a week and Frappuccinos were my beverage of choice. Then in college I discovered the White Chocolate Mocha and fancy lattes became my forte.

Now as a grown adult I usually prefer a simple cup of joe to any fancy latte, though that doesn't stop me from ordering one now and then. I've tried just about every fancy latte that Starbucks has ever put out. And while I know that Starbucks isn't the best coffee in the world I have a true brand affinity for them.

Now to the problem, I would drink coffee all day long if I could. Not because of the caffeine but coffee is my social drink. I love to meet people for coffee, run to get coffee with people, even just make people a cup of coffee. Everything about the routine is social and it really soothes me.

And lastly, my shopping angle kicks in. After all my first addiction IS shopping. Have you seen their new personalized gift cards. Too bad I change my drinks every 3 days, because they babies are ADORABLE! This is where my photographic memory comes in handy and several of my friends will be getting them with their fave drink on it!

Lattes All Around,

Wednesday, December 5, 2007

RAMBLING: Hot Holiday Toys

I have a day job... it pays the bills, well it will until December 14, but I will get into that some other time. My day job is probably the coolest one on the planet. I do content for KOL, AOL's kids service. If you've never been to the site, check it out, among my responsibilities are KOL Style, KOL Jr and KOL Toy Time, which brings me to the subject of my post.

Every year on KOL Toy Time we publish a Hot Holiday Toy list. All the products in each age group are selected by yours truly and come with my personal recommendation on them. So if you're still at a loss for what to give that hard-to-please kid in your life here are my faves!

Here's the breakdown:

Toys for Ages 9-12
Bratz Life Game by MGA
Dream Life Superstar by Hasbro
Girl Tech Video Journal by Radica
Hannah Montana/'HSM2' DVD Board Games by Mattel
Jenga Girl Talk by Hasbro
Tamagotchi Connection V4.5 by Bandai
Technic Motorized Bulldozer by LEGO
The Game of Life: Twists and Turns by Hasbro
Tyco R/C Tri-Clops Mutant by Mattel
UB Funkeys by Mattel

Toys for Ages 6-8
Barbie Girls by Mattel
Bratz Adventures in Learning Globe by MGA
Eyeclops by Jakks Pacific
Hannah Montana In-Concert Pop Stage and Dolls by PlayAlong
HyperDash by WildPlanet
Monopoly Junior Disney Channel Edition by Hasbro
Nerf N-Strike Disk Shot by Hasbro
Pixel Chix Roomies by Mattel
Spotz Maker by Zizzle
Tranformers Movie Ultimate Bumblebee by Hasbro

Toys for Ages Under 6
Candy Land Castle Game by Hasbro
Care Bears 25th Anniversary Bear by PlayAlong
Clickstart: My First Computer by LeapFrog
Crayola Beginnings First Marks by Binney-Smith
Easy Link Internet Launch Pad by Fisher-Price
Furreal Friends S'Mores Pony by Hasbro
Hooked On Phonics Talking Smart Sticks by Zizzle
Little Tikes Play Smarter Cook N Learn Kitchen by MGA
Playskool Made for Me Digital Music Player by Hasbro
TMX Friends Ernie and Cookie by Fisher-Price

Santa Claus Is Coming to Town,

Monday, December 3, 2007

RAMBLING: Juicy for Juicy

Sadly I have to admit that I'm EXTREMELY impressionable. It's quite pathetic. My current "dilemma" is simple really, I want a Juicy Charm Bracelet. The sad part is that for at least 2 years I've scoffed at them. Mainly because they are HUGE, the links on the bracelet are twice the size of a normal one and the charms are VERY big. Though I never said they weren't cute. Some of the charms have some super-cool features, like the 2007 Special Edition Gingerbread House that opens from the bottom to show a dog. So stinkin' cute!

It's not very expensive though once you add in all the charms I want, it ain't cheap. But I've certainly asked hubby to spend a pretty penny on Tiffany & Co. in the past. My problem is this, first of all I feel like I'm jumping on the bandwagon. All of a sudden, something I've snubbed in the past is on my drool list. And second of all, I have a MILLION charm bracelets. Well not a million, but I have the silver heart tag bracelet, a bracelet with bug charms (both from T&Co.), a charm bracelet I've had since I was a child with all sorts of cute charms on it and another one that hubby gave me as a push present with baby shoes on it. Two of them have no extra charms on them but the ones they originally came with and yet I want more.

You might be saying, buy the Juicy charms and add them to your existing bracelets. That's not an option. All of my bracelets are sterling silver, my metal of choice, and the Juicy ones are gold colored :-\. Secondly, if I load this thing up with Holiday Charms what will I do the rest of the year around? I can't break the thought of it though. I think about it all the time. And this usually means I will succumb to the pressure.

Charmed, I'm Sure,

Saturday, December 1, 2007

Rambling: Time for a Transition

LLB is starting to try to climb out of her crib. All I've caught her doing so far is getting her leg up on the bar of her crib. But I'm sure she could pull herself up and over if she really tried. She's not ready for a big girl bed though, so I'm a little at a loss here...

Do I wait until she falls? Do I wait until she does it regularly? Right now it's maybe once or twice a week that she does it. We have a full size twin in her room. I do not want to do a toddler bed, so what do I do about that? She can get off the twin bed with no problem, but not sure she's ready to sleep on it.

I thought we would wait until she was closer to 3 for this, didn't think that I'd be worrying about it before she even turned 2. UGH Anyone have any advice?

Spider-Man Is My Baby's Daddy,

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

REVIEW: Baby GAP's Winter Line

I forgot to mention something else I bought on Black Friday. LLB and I went to a parade in a local town, well I played the "Bad Mommy" card and my child was TERRIBLY under-dressed. I had the JJ Cole Bundle Me on her stroller but she needed a coat and hat and even mittens. OK, who am I kidding? What toddler keeps on mittens? But she needed some accessories.

I piled on the sweatshirts, and wandered into Baby Gap while I waited for my friend to arrive. In there I found the cutest winter accessories. I purchased this hat.

Sowflake pom-pom hat $16.50
It looked absolutely adorable on LLB. I'll try to dig up a pic of her in it later.

It's too bad I didn't see this hat when I made my purchase, because it's equally cute.

Snowflake pom-pom hat $16.50
GAP actually wrote it as Sowflake :-P I love a good typo

And let's not even discuss the matching sweater!

Snowflake cardigan $34.50

I also like these 2-in-1 graphic shirts. The prints are cute and I like the faux-layered style.

2-in-1 polka-dot graphic T $16.50

I think I might use this dress in our holiday greeting card, I can't decide though.

Multi-striped sweater dress $34.50

Oh, A Shopping We Will Go,

Saturday, November 24, 2007

RAMBLING: Black Friday in HD

Hubby and I have been debating making the move to a HD TV. In fact for over a year we've really debated it. I really wanted a Sony Bravia XBR2, $2500 UGH! Hubby definitely didn't want to spend that much. I just didn't want to spend that much and see a newer model the next week for the same price or even less.

Well Black Friday, we hit the stores. I hit Best Buy at 9AM they had an external hard drive I wanted, the Western Digital Essential Edition 500GB for $99. Alas, they were sold out. :-\ So when hubby and I decided to check out Circuit City after LLB's nap on Friday, I wasn't optimistic. First of all they only had one TV on sale that fit what we wanted, and I wasn't sure I wanted it.

We hadn't made it out of the first row when I saw a beautiful Sony TV with a little piece of paper hanging next to it that said Unadvertised Price $1399. Hubby and I were pretty excited. We got it fired up to check out the picture and then had them look up how many they might have left. Turned out they had several and it was actually $1199.

Sony Bravia 40" KDL40V2500

Hubby was sold, so a little while later we walked out with it and have been happy hi-def-ers ever since. DirecTV won't be out until Thurs so for now we're really just watching standard def but hey it gets the job done. I still have some gifts to pick up for people, but I'm already off to a great start (TV purchase aside).

Shop 'Til You Drop,

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

REVIEW: Books to Gobble Up

I want the LLB's 2nd Thanksgiving to be a good one. So I've been looking for some cute items I can gift her with, that aren't a big deal.

Spot's Thanksgiving by
Eric Hill
Everyone's favorite little puppy is celebrating Thanksgiving. Each family member helps Spot get ready for the holiday, teaching him valuable lessons along the way.

Corduroy's Thanksgiving by Lisa McCue
Toddlers will delight at watching Corduroy celebrate Thanksgiving with his friends.

Countdown to Thanksgiving by Jodi Huelin
Get your children counting down to Thanksgiving with this cute book. From 10 family members to one big feast, kids will love this counting book.

Tasty Thanksgiving Feast by Suzy-jane Tanner
Henrietta Hen and her friends have cooked up treats and are ready to celebrate. This is a peel the flap book that will leave children guessing what's under each page.

Turkey Treats for All,

Sunday, November 18, 2007

RAMBLING: Oh Happy Day

If you're the mom of a toddler you should appreciate this. My daughter is almost 2, and while she's a couple months shy of the title, the Terrible Twos have made some appearances in our lives. People remind me that she's still an excellent child. But of course I can't help but notice her behavioral tendencies.

She is testing me, pushing me to my limit ALWAYS! But not today. We had our weekly playdate at our house and I thought it would be a disaster. I was worried that she wouldn't want to share her toys with her friends. She behaved ... like a DREAM! Not once did I hear her raise her voice and when she did get a little cranky I reminded her that we were taking turns and she stopped and waited. STOPPED AND WAITED!

Nap time was more gloriousness, she went down easily. Stayed asleep for 2.5 hours and woke up in a GREAT mood. We were then off to Target to play with Lyssa and again she was excellent. I could go on, but seriously you get the point, even at dinner she sat quietly and BEHAVED.

I don't know who this child is, but she is welcome anytime. I think these moments come up just at the point with a toddler where you would send them away if you could, to remind you that they are lovable little creatures. I'm so proud of her tonight that I'm beaming and I swear my heart swelled a little more.

I'm sure tomorrow I'll pay the price, but hey I'll take what I can get at this point.

Basking in the Glow,

Thursday, November 15, 2007

REVIEW: Ugg Or Uggly?

I will admit I have several pairs of Uggs, when I preggers I lived in them. I will not lie to you and say I think they're cute I think they're heinous BUT they are comfy and warm. I also like the fun colors, it's an easy way to infuse some color into your wardrobe! So when I saw these I was torn.

Ugg Australia Wahine Embroidered Boot

They are visually stunning! The embroidery is beautiful and I love the chocolate brown backing with the bright-colored flowers. But are they ugly? I can't decide. Part of me screams YES they're disgusting. But part of me really likes them, and to be honest I might even order them!

What do you think? Check them out at!

Lugging My Uggs Around,

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

RAMBLING: I See Said the Blind Girl

LLB was still hanging out in a rear-facing seat. I had read how much safer it was and honestly she wasn't bothered by not facing forward. She didn't know any differently and she is barely 22 pounds so I felt so much better knowing she was safe.

Lately though she's been pitching fits in her carseat. It had nothing to do with being rear-facing, again she didn't know any better. But I knew if I flipped her it would give her something "new" in the car and she would likely stop pitching a fit.

So the seat was flipped around last night. My first thought was how much bigger my backseat looked with the seat turned around. It was like the rear-facing seat had eclipsed 1/2 the back of my car for almost 2 years! She was happy to get into it this morning. I commented on how much more she would be able to see. To which she proclaimed "I SEE!" Now this goes back to my glasses, when I take them off I proclaim, "I can't see" to her to stress how important they are. Then when I put them back on I say, "I can see!" She has taken to stealing my line.

The whole ride to childcare she shouted "I SEE!" over and over. It was hysterically wonderful. The clincher was when we arrived at the childcare center. I went around to take her out. To which she told me, "no." She then kicked, screamed and wriggled in her seat, the way she used to do as I loaded her INTO the carseat before. When I got her out she kept shouting "Seat! Seat!" to me. It was her way of telling me to put her back.

It was adorable, she didn't want to get out of her seat. Heading home from work had much the same effect. We get home, she whines about leaving the car. I suppose it's better then listening to her scream the whole car ride somewhere.

Smack It Up, Flip It, Rub It Down,

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

REVIEW: Old Navy's Outerwear Sale

I swear I should work for Old Navy, the amount of FREE advertising and mentions I do for them. Oh well! From now until November 16, Old Navy (online and in stores) is doing their 40% on outerwear sale. This is a GREAT deal and one you should act on if you've been needing a winter coat for you or anyone in the family.

I snatched up a red pea coat. A little primer on me, red pea coats are my signature outerwear. I'm nothing without one! So I was delighted that Old Navy offered this beauty in a stunning cherry red! It's unlined, but that's fine with me, and the adorable, printed inner-stitching makes up for it! And don't let the word cropped mislead you, it's a pretty standard length. The green is kind of a cool color, too -- if you ask me!

Women's Cropped Toggle Peacoats

Available in Green, Light Heather Grey, Navy Blue, Red Plaid, and Red (not avail online)
Regularly $78 -- On Sale for $46.80

Vests and I have a love/hate relationship. This are tends to be too cold for them, but they can look super-cute when layered properly. Though when I was pregnant I LIVED IN Old Navy's maternity vest, so they do come in handy.

Women's Frost-Free Hooded Vests

Available in True Blue, Coffee Grounds and Navy Blue
Regularly $49.50 -- On Sale for $29.70

I'm all for a guy in a tailored, nicely fitting jacket. Big puffy winter jackets are just so thuggish to me, though they serve their purpose! So this simple zip-up jacket looks casual enough for everyday where, yet would also look GREAT with dress slacks.

Men's Wool-Blend Zip Jackets

Available in Heather Charcoal and New Black
Regularly $58 -- On Sale for $34.80

I don't know what it is about this particular jacket but I really like the simple styling. The two-tone coloring makes it look very cool and it looks like it would be VERY warm!

Color-Blocked Snowboarder Jackets for Baby

Available in Eclipse, Bugs and Geisha Red
Regularly $34.50 -- On Sale for $20.70

Toggles are big this season, so don't let your little girl miss out on this cool trend. This jacket isn't too thick but it also isn't too thin. It will fit snugly in a carseat and yet keep your little one warm and comfy. The white color might be hard to maintain though and the pink is a bit too girly!

Hooded Toggle Coats for Baby

Available in Sugar Cookie and Pink (not avail online)
Regularly $34.50 -- On Sale for $20.70

There were some really cute girl coat alternative that I don't see online, so this is one deal where shopping your local store is probably your best bet.

It's Gonna Be a Cold One,

Saturday, November 10, 2007

RAMBLING: Smooth Me Out

I have a friend who is hardcore granola, she cloth diapers, buys everything organic, you name it. And I totally admire her. She's the first person I turn to when I need ideas on nutrition for LLB and even myself.

Recently I was trying to get more good for you foods in our systems and she told me about her smoothie recipe. I realize she's not the ONLY one to make this smoothie, but all my credit goes to her for this fabulous recipe.

You'll need a whey or soy protein powder, flax seed oil, bananas, frozen peaches, vanilla yogurt, dairy or soy milk and mango or blueberries (I prefer mango). My friend uses a powder from Trader Joes called Very Green which adds some veggie nutrients, blueberries help disquise the smoothie from being green. At her recommendation I buy all frozen organic fruits, except for banana which I buy fresh and chop up and freeze before it turns brown. You can sub out the organic as you see fit, you'll get the same fruit benefits without it. For the milk I actually use Vanilla Soy milk but you can certainly use whole milk. For the whey powder I do a vanilla flavored one.

I put the fruit in first, for LLB and I put in about 1/2 a banana, 4 peach slices, 4 mango chunks then about a cup of yogurt and a cup of milk, 1-2 teaspoons of flax seed oil, 1 scoop of whey protein powder and I blend. I usually add the powder after I blend the first ingredients so that it blends into the liquids properly. The trick is to make one and learn from there. For the first few times I changed my recipe a little to get it just right.

It's a nice filling snack, I do it primarily after breakfast or for the after nap snack. LLB loves it and I feel great knowing she's getting a great serving of fruit and other nutrients!

Blended Just Right,

Friday, November 9, 2007

ATW: Round-Up Week of Nov. 5

New weekly post, ATW -- Around The Web, takes my running list of posts on other blogs I work for and gives them to you in a clean "digest." Enjoy!
Get Clickin',

Edit: OOPS I originally dubbed this AOW, not sure why, I think I was out of it when I wrote that :-P

Thursday, November 8, 2007

RAMBLING: A Rant on Handbags and the People Who Carry Them

I'm a snob, a handbag snob to be exact. I LOVE shoes and I drool over Manolos, Choos and Louboutins BUT it's handbags that I LIVE for. I can spot a bag a mile away and in many cases tell who made it. But I'm not a designer handbag snob. As in I appreciate a good Marc Jacobs bag and even turn green when my friend Deanne shows up with a new one, but you don't have to be rockin' a Fendi to earn my respect.

Let me break it down for you. My skin crawls at the sight of Louis Vuitton monogram bags, in fact just about ANY logo-heavy bag. Do you really need to show off that badly? I'll admit when Jessica Simpson rocked her Louis in the first season of Newlyweds I attempted to use a FLouis (fake Louis). It got old. I realized a million soccer moms around me all had the same bag and only one of them prob actually had the real deal. I can spot the fakes from the real, it's not complicated really. BUT, how good can you feel about a bag that you paid thousands of dollars for that everyone else has a knock-off of and most people couldn't even tell yours was real in comparison. Now when I see someone with one I immediately shed a couple of respect points for the person.

Pardon me if I sound bitchy, but my bottom line is simple. I like a sexy handbag, I like clean lines, good quality and the brand name could be designer or unknown for all I care. I've come to really love a couple of brands, Rafe, BCBG Max Azria, 1154 Lill Studio and even Isaac Mizrahi for Target. One of these days I will probably pick up a Marc Jacobs and maybe even a Dior, I've wanted one long enough, but I won't be doing it so everyone else knows what I have. I'll be doing it for ME!

It's a Sickness Really,

REVIEW: 1154 Lill Studio Bags -- Drea Update

Courtesy of my friend Kere, a 1154 Lill Rep, we have the first peek at the Drea. She also demonstrates size in relation to the Andi and how it reverses. I CANNOT WAIT to get mine! The images are a bit distorted as she sent them in a word doc and I had to make them .jpgs. Excuse the coloring and behold the glory!

Size is same as Andi

Exterior side with buckle wrap

Reversed, with weighted buckle

Handbags = Happiness,

Wednesday, November 7, 2007

REVIEW: Buntings -- Baby It's Cold Outside

LLB was born in February, and in February around here it's still freezing. So I knew I had to get her a bunting. My mom purchased us a snowsuit but I knew that you had to be careful with snowsuits and carseats. So I debated the JJ Cole Bundle Me.

It was one of the last things on my registry and I hadn't gotten around to getting it when I went in to labor. Ironically it arrived while I was in the hospital but I didn't open it until we got home. So the snowsuit got us home from the hospital. But from then on I used the Bundle Me. I went with the Bundle Me Urban in Ice and it was perfect.

The outer is made of quilted nylon that protects against wind and rain. And the inner is made of microsuede that warmth and even a touch of style. LLB seemed to like how soft it was against her skin and I liked that I didn't have to layer blankets on her and worry that they might fall off. The handy zipper closure ensures that the child stays bundled in and nothing falls out. Best of all it can pull up all the way to the top of the seat, helping shield baby from snow and rain!

When LLB outgrew her infant one I purchased a toddler one and this is one item I recommend for anyone. If you don't live in an area that gets super-cold they make light-weight versions, too.

Product Information
Bundle Me Urban

Made by JJ Cole
Use with car seats, strollers, and joggers
Wind and water resistant
Machine washable
Removable top for easy temperature control
Crash tested- FMVSS 213
Allows safety straps to rest directly on child
Priced at approximately $50
Find yours on Google

Buying Tip: These items pop up on sale all the time, especially as the seasons draw to an end, so keep an eye on the sales and try to buy ahead. I scored my Toddler sized one for almost half price!

On a Cold Winter's Night,

Tuesday, November 6, 2007

RAMBLING: Pushing Daises Fashion Fantastic

I set my TiVO for Pushing Daisies way back when ... then never watched it. I let the episodes pile up and even debated cancelling the Season Pass or just deleting the eps. But I didn't, they stayed and finally this weekend, when LLB was too sick for us to leave the house, I watched them. And I LOVED them! All 5 of them! HA!

Besides the absolutely adorable story line and cute narrations, the fashions are to-die-for! My only complaint would be the excessive use of boobs, I mean seriously do we have to have cleavage in EVERY dang shot? But that aside the dresses bring us back to a simpler time and are almost Stepford Wife-ish! And yet I drool.

From head-to-toe they accesorize the characters, bringing hats, pumps and purses to the forefront and delighting my eyes. I've not been this impressed with costume prep since 'Sex and the City' and I have yet to be disappointed by an ensemble. I also have to commend them on their use of color, this is no black and white area, they use pinks, reds, even yellows! I'm in love!

Dress Me Up in Your Clothes,

Saturday, November 3, 2007

REVIEW: 1154 Lill Studio Bags

I love accessories, bags and shoes in particular. And several years ago I was introduced to 1154 Lill Studio. The concept is simple and yet great. You select the bag shape and then the fabrics you want. The options are almost endless and in the end you have a bag that's literally all your own.

The bags are excellently crafted and hold up to lots of abuse. The prices are reasonable, says the girl who pays a pretty penny for bags, and come in practical sizes that anyone could love. You can order on line at or if they have a representative in your area throw a party yourself and see the fabrics in person, this is the way to go if you can.

At my party last night I was able to order two I had been yearning for. Here's a peek at them.

The first bag I bought was a Donna, it's huge and magnificent and I wanted one so bad I could taste it. With the help of stylist/assistant Lyssa I was able to put together a bag that I think will look amazing. I used White out Branches as the main body fabric. Rosita as the top and base and Dotted Tuxedo as the straps. When I logged on today and saw the bag I wasn't sure how much I loved it, but I'm sure when I touch it I'll salivate.

The second was an Andi but then our rep, Kere told me about the Drea and I had to have it. It doesn't come out until Monday so you'll have to wait for the image of that one. But it's essentially an Andi with a shorter body and buckle flap. I did Walnut Faux Suede for the handle, interior pocket and top accent. And I did Deco Ivy on the body.

I'll post the Drea when it's on the site.

Happiness Is in the Bag,

RAMBLING: What a Week

I spent some serious dough this week and unfortunately 90% of it was on dang car parts! :-\ I suddenly wish I lived in a city and didn't even have to bother with the stupid things. Tuesday it was two new tires and an alignment. Wednesday it was a state inspection and rear brake job. Thursday it was an emissions inspection and a trip to DMV as my tags expired on 10/31. Needless to say almost one thousand dollars and countless hours later I was done. Thank the lord. Too bad I have to go back in a month for a front brake job.

Friday I co-hosted a purse party with one of gal pals. It was a blast, and I have a post coming up next with my review of these hot bags! LLB has some cold bug and is not quite herself. BLAH! I'm hoping she wakes up a new toddler for her sake and mine.

I've done some personal shopping this week, too. Carters had an adorable hat and mitten set that I picked up for LLB though I picked up the 12-24 month size instead of the 2T-3T I meant to so I have to exchange it. Poor kid has a HUGE head! I found some adorable long sleeve shirts for LLB at Gap Outlet. I realized even though the kid needed new clothes like a hole in the head that she didn't have ANY long sleeves. Well that problem is fixed now.

And of course my final purchase was at my purse party last night! Review coming right up.

Point Me to the Nearest Shopaholics Anonymous Meeting,

Thursday, November 1, 2007

REVIEW: Old Navy's New Stuff

I'm almost always pleasantly surprised by Old Navy's spring and fall lines. This fall is no exception. I was in there the other day and while I left with only thing for myself (and of course several for LLB HA!) I was smitten with several things.

Women's Printed Turtleneck Dresses -- $32.50

This is the ONE thing I bought myself and I LOVE it. I am really into the new sweater dress trend but I have to be careful because I get overheated in turtlenecks. This dress gives me this super-cute trend but with the option of not being overheated!

Women's Turtleneck Sweater Dresses -- $36.50

I was thiscloseto buying this one, too. But I knew it would cause me to itch and turn red in the face from the weight of the sweater. It's adorable though!

Women's Wool-Blend Trapeze Peacoats -- $78

If only it came in red, my signature pea coat color. But for under $80 you can't go wrong with these polished and perfected pea coats.

Women's Cummerbund Pencil Skirts -- $34.50

If you have some holiday functions coming up, this skirt will look smashing. Paired with a bright, red blouse or even a nice cardigan you will look dressy and yet be comfy all at the same time.

Women's Cable-Knit Toggle Sweaters -- $34.50

I love sweaters, I have a closet full of them. But I love when they're distinct. So instead of having just a million basic sweaters I buy toggles and cardigans and sweaters that all have a distinct look and feel.

Have you found anything cool lately? Share it! I love to see what people find on their shopping adventures.

Is Old Navy Hiring?,

Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Happy Halloween!

I want to say a HAPPY HAPPY HAPPY Halloween to everyone out there. Please be safe and enjoy your night. Take some extra time tonight to cuddle your little ones close and ensure they're safe while they're out on their adventures. Thanks for stopping by! I'll be back tomorrow with more posts.

Oh and as promised here are the shots of the LLB in her costume. Pics were taken at our local Picture People, we had an EXCELLENT photographer. If you live in the No. VA area and want her info just hit me up!

Trick or Treat,

Monday, October 29, 2007

REVIEW: Taking Up Polka

Polka dots, that is! I HEART HEART HEART polka dots, I don't know where the obsession has come from, but alas it's here. A friend just announced her employment with GAP and I found myself on their site, convinced I could find a way to make her use her discount on LLB! Here's what I found:

Polka-dot knit pants

Cute dots aside, these pants are brown and pink, only my FAVORITE color combo. Consider them sold.

Hooded polka-dot dress

It's sick really, I'm so typical and easy to figure out. Brown, check. Pink, check. Polka Dots, check. DONE!

2-in-1 polka-dot graphic T

Gasp! It's not pink or brown but it is SUPER-cute and, of course, polka-dotted.

Bunny slope long sleep set

I think the ONLY thing I like better than polka dots right now is pajamas. This has been obsession since before LLB was born. Little kid pajamas are just too cute. LLB has a MILLION pairs and counting. Add polka dots and I'm there.

Phew, I think I'm seeing spots now. Now get to shopping!

Going Around in Circles,

RAMBLING: Feeling Slightly Giddy

Some of you have happened by my blog thanks to my recent intro over at CBB! First of all, welcome and second of all, thank you! I checked my traffic stats, yeah I'm a nerd -- though I do online content for a living, so come on you had to know I live and die by numbers -- and have a traffic thingy on my blog.

The day my intro showed up on CBB my traffic skyrocketed (I use the word skyrocketed loosely here) it wasn't in the millions or anything. But, I digress, TONS of you found your way to my humble little blog and some of you even commented on some posts. So I wanted to greet you warmly and tell you that I hope you'll come back, and come back OFTEN!

It's quite silly but seeing people commenting on my posts or even just coming by my blog really does excite me. I've been swallowed by a HUGE corporation long enough to feel like one of the millions and this blog reminds me that I'm really one IN a million. Yes I'm being cheesy, but it's true that I'm nothing without my fans (again I use the word loosely)!

If you have comments, suggestions, praise or even loathing, please post it. I promise to do my best to educate, entertain and/or just make you laugh at or with me every chance I get.

I'm Walking on Sunshine,

Saturday, October 27, 2007

REVIEW: Toddler Tunes

I have a hard time with music for the LLB. I am a musical person, I live my life by music. So imagine my horror when I pop in a children's CD and hear some middle-aged man singing children's songs in a cheesy voice.

Thankfully my day job affords me certain benefits, one of them getting free children's music CDs. There is some REALLY GOOD talent out there and I hope to share them with you.

You Are My Little Bird by Elizabeth Mitchell
There is just something beautifully pure about this CD. Elizabeth Mitchell's voice is folk-y and pretty and her songs are beautiful. I absolutely ADORE her rendition of Bob Marley's Three Little Birds.
Best Tracks: Little Liza Jane, Who's My Pretty Baby, Little Bird Little Bird, Peace Like a River, Three Little Birds
Have a listen to some of the songs on KOL Jr.

A Duck in New York City by Connie Kaldor

This CD is fun and playful with some very silly songs that LLB and I love.
Best Tracks: If You Love a Hippopotamus, Laundry Bag, Belly Button, Honey Honey Honey, Quack Quack Quack
Have a listen to some of the songs on KOL Jr.

More coming soon...

Music to My Ears,

Thursday, October 25, 2007

REVIEW: Infant Car Seat -- Protecting Your Most Precious Cargo

I did so much reading on car seats, I feel like a walking encyclopedia on them. That being said, the one thing I learned is that the BEST car seat is the one that fits in YOUR car and is installed CORRECTLY. I chose to do an infant carrier car seat for my sweet pea. This was so that I could take her out of the car in the seat and tote her around easily.

The question was which brand to go with. I teetered between the Peg Perego, Graco and Britax infant models. My final decision was made based on the following questions:
--Which seat was easiest to use?
--Which seat had the lowest recall rate?
--Which seat did better in crast tests?

All these questions led me to one seat, the Graco SnugRide. It had the lowest recall rate, did GREAT in crash tests and was VERY easy to use. I purchased mine as part of a travel system, it was a Laura Ashley print and that made it a little more expensive. The best part about it being the best choice was that it was also cheaper then other two, came in better, fun prints and actually weighed less then most of them.

One caveat, Consumer Reports released a VERY controversial study early this year that deemed 90% of Infant Car Seats as unsafe. They retracted the study when it came out that the speeds tested were nearly 70MPH, not 38.5 which is the standard the NHTSA uses. I took one thing away from that study though, 2 seats, one of them the Graco SnugRide with EPS passed. I certainly would feel better knowing that my child was in a seat that tested well at excessive speed as well as lower speeds!

I know nothing about the safety of the latest Peg Perego Viaggio TRI-FIX, Maxi-Cosi Mico or Orbit Baby system seats. There have been tons of changes to manufacturers' lineups so make sure you read up if you're debating another brand.

Product Information
SnugRide Carseat With EPS

Made by Graco
5-Point harness ensures that baby is in the seat tightly
Equipped with LATCH system to ensure easy installation
Equipped with belt fastening system in case your car doesn't have LATCH capability
Priced at approximately $90
Find yours at

Buying Tip: Read up on crash tests, carseats change all the time. Make sure you get your professionally installed, or at least checked by a safety inspector. Don't EVER buy a carseat used, they are no good once they have been in an accident and you have NO WAY of knowing whether it was in one or not. Lastly, make sure you register your seat with the manufacturer so that they can keep you posted on recalls.

Roll Out,