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 neimanmarcus.com!

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 www.1154lill.com 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?,