Monday, December 21, 2009

Decorating Christmas Cookies with a 2 Year Old is Totally Over-rated


Sadly, I'm totally not kidding.



I thought I was in the right frame of mind.
It was going to get really messy... and I thought I'd be 'cool' with it...




And for someone who loves to spread 'butter on bread'
you would have thought she'd jump at spreading
'icing on cookies'




But something about those green sprinkles mesmerized her.



I tried to decorate cookies as well...




And discovered that I get really mad when I can't get
the icing to spread evenly.


So what is a girl supposed to do? Well, she QUITS, that's what she does. I managed to frost and 'decorate' some round shaped cookies and THEN we officially 'quit'. I was taking them to our local Post Office as a little gift from Claire because there are 4 people who we regularly see when we go in (which is alot... especially when I have sales). Her favorite is actually Bob, but Marcie, Liz and Sean are a close 2nd.

I had used the 'whipped' frosting that comes in a plastic 'can' thinking it would be a better choice. WRONG. It's super sticky, and I don't think it 'hardens'. So if the edge of one cookie touched another they got all messed up. SO annoying. I ended up putting the cookies in a pyrex dish... totally not the festive cheer you'd think when presenting cookies, but at least I got them out of the house.

And to make matters even worse, I just frosted one of the sugar cookies with chocolate frosting (my favorite) and took a bite. Not that great. In fact, I almost couldn't eat it. (key word being almost)

So to Bob, Marcie, Liz and Sean - I apologize for the groady cookies, but just remember it's the thought that counts... right? (please say yes... please say yes... please say yes...)


Saturday, December 19, 2009

Conversations with Claire

So I'm actually one of those people who LOVES to hear about funny conversations that kids have with their parents. And now that Claire has graduated to 'conversationalist', there have been many times where I have been quite amused. The mind of a two year old is complex. Sometimes you think they don't understand a thing, and then the next minute you realize they know more than you do. Weird.



So here's a few of my favorite recent conversations with Claire (and it won't hurt my feelings if you stop reading at this point):

  •  I love hearing, 'Mom - can I listen to 'Toxic' please?' when we get in the car (and yes, it's the one by Britney Spears - don't call CPS on me)
  • I love hearing her sing 'The Wonder Pets' theme song
  • The other morning I wanted a few more minutes of sleep when Claire came in. So she sat on the bed by me. When I sat up she said, 'Mom! You're getting up! You can do it! Good job Mom!' and then she got down and ran to my side of the bed. I was watching her, smiling, while she said, 'Mom - don't stop, you can do it! Good job Mom, you're getting up!' (nothing like having your 2 year old act like you getting out of bed is an amazing accomplishment)
  • When going to the mall one night Claire turned to Bob and said, 'Dad - you got any cash?'
  • Today Claire asked me, 'Did Daddy wash my penguin pajamas?' I said, 'no, I did'. To which Claire replied, 'oh... great job Mom. Great job.' (Nice to know that my laundry skills meet her expectations)

 I must admit, Claire makes me smile, and now that I'm finally caught up on all my orders, I want to do nothing but have conversations with her.

Monday, December 7, 2009

Snow in the City

Okay, so maybe 'city' is a bit of an exaggeration... as we're more like the 'suburbs', but getting snow of any kind of a rarity out here.



Good thing I had snow clothes ready to go this year. (Last year I waited too long and everything was gone and I couldn't find anything to fit her) So even though it was over-kill, I still put every bit of 'snow clothing' on her (including her snow boots).




Claire had a fabulous time as we basically stood outside our house.



I think it's mostly gone now... and it's only noon... but I have to admit - that's my kind of snow! No shoveling, no power outages... it's just enough to make you like it. Perfect.





Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Natural Consequences

My sister and I always talk about natural consequences. You know, it's the stuff that 'naturally' happens after you make unwise decisions. For instance:

Decision:
Drink 10 tequila shots
--------------------
Natural Consequence:
End up on You Tube



Decision: 
Make cupcakes for no reason
--------------------
Natural Consequence: 
Your clothes shrink 2 sizes



Decision:
Potty Train your daughter when she doesn't want to
--------------------
Natural Consequence:
Get psyched out because your daughter goes pee-pee in the potty the first 1/2 day you try it but the next day only does it twice and then gets mad at you. She then poops in her undies 5 minutes after her last 'try' which results in you having to 'cut them off' (yes, with scissors) because you're freaking out that you're going to get poop all over you. And then it doesn't stop there - it happens 2, yes, TWO more times that day - with one of them being 'mommy - there's a piece of poop in the playroom' because it fell out of the undies because they don't make princess undies in size 12-18 months. And then when you think you can't take it anymore, she starts being totally compliant by the end of the night so you think that maybe it's starting to click, but then the next day she has a total melt down the first time she 'tries' because you just stripped off her warm fleece jammies and she's sitting naked on a cold, plastic Dora toilet-seat insert and even the weird skull candies in the plastic beaker-thingy won't calm her down. Skip past the 3 more melt downs and throw on a diaper and head to the doctor's office where said child gets the flu and N1H1 vaccine (and didn't even cry!) and then head up to meet Daddy for lunch. After arriving home from lunch (and complaining to said Daddy) you feel that maybe you over-reacted and decide to put undies back on for the last 30 minutes before said daughter goes down for a nap. And while you're on the phone with  a particular cursed & evil personal training facility (California Peak Fitness - boycott those dirty scoundrels who steal your money and won't do anything about it and will not return phone calls) you realize that there is a nasty stench coming from the living room where you find your daughter standing in front of the TV with DIARRHEA coming down her leg, destroying the cutest, polka-dot wedges that you bought 2 years before she could even fit into them, and the green pants she's wearing are from Gap - so you really don't want to have to take the scissors to those, so you breathe through your mouth (as not to inhale the toxic fumes) and start trying to remove the soiled clothing, only to have poop get all over you because her feet get stuck (should have taken those shoes off first!) and she falls against you. That's when you notice the carpet has 3 stain marks but instead of getting something to start 'lifting' it out, you gab the girl and run to the bathroom where you plop her on the Dora seat and see that a poopy film is covering both her legs. You feel like crying, but instead wash your hands and arms as thoroughly as you can, and after saying 'DON'T MOVE, I'LL BE RIGHT BACK' you run and put some wipes on the floor, stepping firmly on the 'spots' hoping that you're doing something remotely close to helping the stain lift while thinking 'this is why we don't have a dog'. After a few more 'steps' on the stain, you get the soiled clothes, throw them in a plastic bag (because you don't want that to touch your other dirty laundry which is actually looking pretty clean to you right about now), and you take the undies that you cut off and throw those in the garbage too. Then after your daughter is 'all done' you give her a 'sponge bath' in the bathroom (that has no bathtub) for fear that another 'lift & carry' episode will result in a trail of vileness and you just can't 'go there' at the moment. And after the chaos has finally calmed down and each of you are clean (though you swear you can still smell 'it') your daughter will turn to you and say, 'Mommy... are you still mad?'

And that's when you know you've hit the lowest of lows in Natural Consequences.



Tomorrow Claire - we're just going to take it easy.
And I'll let you have any color you want - even if you don't go pee-pee in the potty.



Saturday, October 24, 2009

I'm losing control of my daughter...

You know, I completely understand that babies grow, get older, and develop their own personalities. I just assumed that I would be able to have a bit more 'control' over 'molding' that personality. Guess that's just one of the many lessons I'm learning about motherhood.

I will say that I love how Claire is becoming her own 'person'. She definitely has certain toys she likes to tote around, certain books she likes to read over and over and certain shoes she prefers over others. And fortunately she hasn't balked at my clothing selections for her, but recently she has made me realize that there are certain things that I don't have control over any more, and I'm going to have to be okay with it.

What I'm talking about is her Halloween costume. Last year I had visions of over-sized felt french fries surrounding her little frame, but due to my procrastination lack of time, she had to wear her previous years costume - a spider. This year I was going to plan ahead. I had chosen the perfect costume weeks  months in advance and I was going to give her the BEST COSTUME EVER. It was going to be custom made, but then I found it online for less, so I figured I'd just save everyone some time and buy it. When I went to finally purchase it, I noticed that there were a few reviews - all of which said it was poor quality. Freaking out in my head that my perfect costume choice for her was slowly slipping through my fingers, I turned to Claire and just asked her what she wanted to be. Without skipping a beat she replied. And the past 10 times I've asked her she has said the same thing. And then she even told my Mom last weekend what she was going to be and she was really excited about it.

So now I've had to face the truth that I have lost this battle. I can't MAKE her be what I want her to be. She has an opinion, and I would be a SUPER MEAN MOMMY if I didn't let her be what she wanted purely because I thought my idea was better (which it still is).

Anyway, here's what Claire wants to be:




And here's what I want her to be:






Call me crazy - but I think DJ Lance Rock from Yo Gabba Gabba is WAY MORE COOL than some dumb pink butterfly.

Monday, October 19, 2009

Introducing.... Dora the Explorer



Sadly, this is not her costume. Remind me the next time I get Claire's hair cut to either go shorter or keep it longer. This just isn't working for me.

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Band-Aids DO make everything better!






 So Claire was running around the island in the kitchen which she does a lot. But this time she fell. I was actually in the other room watching TV (Bob was in the kitchen, so it wasn't like I was just letting her be totally unsupervised) when I heard the fall... followed shortly by the cry. I went in there and listened while Bob recounted the event, and Claire continued to cry. She had a little bruise on her chin and after inspection I found there wasn't any blood (THANK GOODNESS! Otherwise I probably would have fainted) so with the hope of making the crying stop, I offered her a band-aid. Which she quickly said yes to, and requested a 'dog'.



Funny how those things work like magic!

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Back from Napa






So this weekend I went to a wedding in Napa for a girlfriend of mine.
Needless to say, she looked absolutely gorgeous.



 

Honestly... we couldn't stop staring. And if I'm being honest - I was
totally jealous of how completely fabulous she looked!

It was a super fun time and I hope they're enjoying every minute
of their honeymoon in the Bahamas.



 

- Congrats Jessica & Mike -
Here's to your Happily Ever After!

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Note to self... check exposure...

So I was trying to get some photos of Claire in her 1st 'Halloween Outfit' yesterday. It wasn't until after I uploaded the photos that I noticed the exposure was off. I was shooting lighter colors time before, and like a dummy I forgot to change it back afterwards. Awe fooey.



She was having such a good time trying to 'cross her legs'




Then a really loud car drove by and scared her





But the sweet girl bounced back pretty quickly

Sunday, September 27, 2009

I hate liars

Really. I do. I decided that today.

Like... I hate when people say:
  • 82% of our vendors return every year
  • I found you through a friend (but can't quite remember) and love your work
  • Anything under $50 just flies through the door
  • There might be 3-4 hair accessory booths but they'll be so spread out you'll never run into each other
When in reality it's really like:
  • Just about everyone was a 1st time vendor
  • Pretty sure my name was taken from a list of vendors from a different show I did. Because I find it strangely coincidental that so many of us attended the same show back in April, and here we all are as first time vendors at this show... being quoted the same statistics
  • Anything under $5 WALKED through the door... not necessarily 'flew'
  • Awesome. 3 of us selling basically the same thing. And we're all pretty much right next to each other. Fantastic
While some of the lies might not be completely detrimental, the fact is, a lie is lie. And I ask specific questions before doing a show because more than likely, if I had gotten TRUTHFUL answers to my questions, I wouldn't have done it.

So what's a girl to do? Well, I already sent off an email explaining my 'frustrations' and they can expect to receive a phone call in the morning as well. I'm just not 'down' with their 'business tactics'.


But I guess good news for everyone else is that I have a TON of stock to get rid of. So a sale on my etsy site will be up pretty darn soon.



New photo of some felt hair goodies I have

THE TRUTH:
While I LOVE the 'artistic' approach to this photo, it was completely unintentional and happened purely by luck.




Sneak peek of what's to come!

Sunday, August 30, 2009

The Good, The Bad & The Ugly

I feel like my life today is easily summed up in 3 parts...

The Good
I'm FINALLY done setting up

The Bad
I'm waiting for my bags to be brought up...
could be a while...

The Ugly
My Face.
I literally look tore back right now


My super great helper Gina and I arrive at Bally's and head over to our booth ready and excited to get started. It's actually pretty fun to see a blank space and know that in a couple of hours (or more like 8) you'll have a fun little space to sell your wares.


As we're setting things up, we start to notice the other booths around us. ALL of them have these REALLY nice, professional displays... with professional signage... and I start to freak out. I feel completely out of my element and realize that in the hopes of saving money by NOT shipping out 'freight' (and instead fit all my supplies into 2 large suitcases - and a couple of 'flat rate' mailing boxes) I have actually done myself a dis-service as now my booth looks like a 2nd grade craft project (and to any 2nd graders reading this - I'm not 'hating' on you, but when you're 33 you have different goals) and I kind of feel like crying a little bit - or fainting since I hadn't eaten anything.


The Good
I take a break and get something to eat
(and start brain storming a 'Plan B')

The Bad
My idea requires finding a Joann's,
buying new supplies & sewing new 'decorations'

The Ugly
Nothing like spending $150 on items you already have at home
Oh - and tack on $80 for the cab ride. Awesome.

If there's one good thing about today - it's that God allowed me to find 2 print fabrics that coordinate with the Blooms that I had already made. So it was able to be pulled together without looking like I did everything last minute (at least I think I'm pulling this off) We spend another 5 hours sewing, ironing, cutting, breaking, hanging, taping, sticking, folding, clipping, arranging and it turns out like this:

You may not notice a huge difference, but the difference is huge to me. I will say that I knew going into this that it would be a 'learning opportunity' as I have never done a show like this before. One main thing - is that I didn't bring enough product, or ways to display it. But hey - what are you going to do. Lesson learned.


So now I'm headed off to bed to get some much needed sleep. I'm hoping that my some-what salvaged booth will not be a total turn off to potential clients, and they'll still come and talk to me anyway.

Oh yeah, one more thing... if you happen to notice that the pictures are slightly crooked, or un-even, or something looks out of place - please don't tell me. I've totally come to an almost 'good place' about what we were able to get done and I really can't take any bad news... I don't have the energy - and sadly, I'm not kidding either.



Thursday, August 13, 2009

Can You Guess How She Got Wet?

So I was over at my friend's house today as Claire plays really well with her son. Although we've learned that if they're being too quiet something must be up... We just finished uploading some photos from my camera to her computer when we walked out and found Claire drenched....





Actually, it was more like this:



I quickly said, 'CLAIRE! WHAT are you doing?!'



Yeah... she said she was drinking Rosco's water... and yes, Rosco is my friend's DOG!


Sorry Claire. But it isn't lady like to drink water out of a dog's bowl.
(no matter how much fun you think it might be!)

Monday, August 3, 2009

Our Trip to the Zoo

First, I have to start off by apologizing for that horrendous Mickey Mouse song that I had posted for a few weeks. Ugh. It was so annoying I didn't even want to come to my own blog. So I deleted all the music for a MUCH needed break. But I'm sure sooner than later I'll be posting a new soundtrack to my life.

Anyway, today Claire and I went to the Zoo and Fairy Tale Town. Now, I went to the zoo... oh... a couple of months ago (?), but I haven't been to FAIRY TALE TOWN in like... 25 years (yes, I'm that old) We went with some of my 'mom friends' and the kids had a great time. Needless to say, I'm WAY tired.

When we were getting ready to leave the zoo and head over to FTT (yeah... that's what the cool people refer to it as) we passed a booth where you could get free face painting done. Claire has never had that done so I thought she might enjoy it.

They had these little examples of the different choices you could choose from. So of course I'm like, 'Claire - do you want a butterfly? Do you want a lady bug?' And in true Claire form, she immediately points to the one she wants. No doubts about it!



Claire opted for her 'face painting' to go on her arm.
(I'm guessing she was going for a tattoo effect)


Here's the finished product!!!
Yeah. I know. I was like, 'WHAT?! You want the WALRUS?'


Checking it out - making sure it was as 'life like' as the example was.



I kept asking her, 'Claire, do you love your Walrus?'
And this was the look she gave me.

But in all honesty, I think she loved it. She showed it off proudly telling everyone (including herself) that she had gotten a Walrus.

Thursday, July 23, 2009

SOMEONE WENT TO DISNEYLAND....

...and all they brought me was this headband!


Yeah... you read that right. Bob and I went to Disneyland and left Claire at home (actually, it was with the Grandparents). We had gotten these Disney 'hopper tickets' that were good for 3 days, and you had to use them within 45 days. The first time we used them we DID take Claire with us but it was a miserable experience for anyone who was in earshot of us. Let's just say the concept of 'waiting' was not something that Claire has mastered at this point. So I'm thinking we're not bringing her back until she's 4. Okay, so maybe 3 1/2 if she's lucky.

Since Bob and I had our 6 year anniversary on this past Sunday - we justified going without Claire by telling ourselves it was an anniversary trip. And honestly - we had a GREAT time. We flew down Monday night and stayed with my cousins, and then we all went to Disneyland together on Tuesday. They have season passes (and in the wise words of Napoleon Dynamite, 'luckyyyyyyy!') and even a parking pass. So it was smooth sailing. Honestly, I felt like we got to do everything we wanted, never waited longer than 30 minutes for a ride, and I was introduced to this magical goodness known as 'Dole Whips'.

There was a 'low point' to the day though. And thankfully, it was only once, and I rebounded from the event faster than I thought I would...

It all started when we were in line for The Pirates of the Caribbean. There was this group of 6 or so in front of us, and they kept taking pictures as we were going through the line. (It appeared to be a 'mom' and then siblings - maybe around the teenage years or so) We ended up in the same boat as them; directly behind them. Well, as soon as our little boat took off, they started up with the picture taking again. And for those of you who haven't been on the ride, IT'S REALLY DARK IN THERE. So if you take photos using a flash, you are going to BLIND EVERYONE IN THE BOAT. Seriously - they took a MINIMUM of 3-4 photos PER SCENE. So every time we pulled up to something new, flash... flash... flash.. flash... at one point they even turned around to take a photo of something behind them and it flashed directly in the eyes of my cousins. CRAZY!

I've never been SO annoyed before (actually, I probably have, but this was a pretty severe case). Once we got off I had a slight headache. And I was totally waiting for the Disney police to jump out when they got off the boat to confiscate their cameras... but no such luck. I did try and throw my meanest mad-dog look their way, but they never looked at me. Aw fooey.

But other than that, we had a super great time. We were in Southern Cal for less than 48 hours, so the time just flew by. I'm sad that it's over, but I'm SOOO glad we went. Here's to another 6 years with my man (and another 6 after that... and another 6 after that... and another 6 after that... and a... well.. I think you get the idea!)

*** SIDE NOTE: I forgot to mention in my last post that we're doing the Korea program and we're hoping for a little girl. Holt received our application and we had our initial phone 'interview' with the branch manager today. Looks like we're moving forward! Ah yes... let the rainfall of paperwork commence!






Sunday, July 19, 2009

Awesome

So it's looking like I'm not able to post more than once a month. UGH. What is wrong with me?! I've totally committed myself to updating my other blog almost daily, but for some reason I just keep putting this one off...

BUT NOT ANYMORE!


I'm so thrilled to say that I now have a REASON to blog more. And what is that reason you ask? Well, it's to help keep my sanity as we start another ADOPTION journey!


* please note that is not a photo of me and Claire - but simply another Asian & child *




Okay, so here's the deal-lio: We decided to go with an International Adoption this time. Why? Well... many reasons actually. As most of you know, we had a really great experience adopting domestically with Claire (of course there were many 'hard parts', but overall it would probably rank in the top 5% of 'Smoothest Adoptions Ever') but there are many factors that we didn't have to 'experience' last time, that chances are, we'll have to this time. I'm a part of an online 'adoption group' and I can't tell you the amount of 'failed adoptions' that have been happening lately (and this is in a group of about 15 or so). Not to mention the cost. Honestly, I have a friend who went through 2 failed adoptions and just adopted her son literally days ago. Her bill? $40K. And there's still probably more to come with finalization, etc. I know this sounds like an extreme example, but sadly, it's not. Birthmother expenses are something that can really add up, and there's no 'hard rules' on what they will be. For us, we just can't take that chance.

We did look into Fost/Adopt and wanted to move forward with that, but again realized with all the 'rules' and 'red tape' that's involved, it wasn't going to to be an option that would work well with our lifestyle (basically meaning I can't handle the stress of all the documentation of any minor scrapes and bruises, background checks of anyone/everyone who MIGHT be a babysitter for us, etc). I so admire those who are able to Foster and I hope that one day we'll be able to do it as well.

So that brings us back to where we are now. Back in January of '08 we actually had started the process but put a 'hold' on it before we really got the train moving. A few days ago, I was talking to my sister about adopting again. (Actually - she was asking me if we were thinking about it again or not) I had all these reasons as to why we weren't sure, or 'what if' situations, or that we're just plain busy. Not to mention we don't have and extra $25K sitting around that we don't know what to do with. And in her true form, she basically gave me a pep talk that totally changed my mind. Now, it's not like she twisted my arm and said, 'you should adopt or I'll punch you in the face', but more along the lines of showing me that it's totally feasible and possible to do it.

Seriously, that conversation made me think 'why in the WORLD was I even hesitant before?'. I'm not worried about the timing (it could take about 2 years), I'm not worried about the process (just a bunch of paperwork and waiting), and I'm not worried about the money (Etsy here I come!) I'm super excited to see how God brings this all together and I'm PUMPED to get started. Oh, and when I brought it up to Bob, he jumped RIGHT ON BOARD. (of course - he's fabulous like that).

So the application is being put in the mail tomorrow (Monday) and our phone 'interview' with the Holt Branch Manager is scheduled for Wednesday. I can't wait to start my little 'time line' that I see all these other Adoptive Parents do on their blogs. It's like I'll be a part of new club. Cool.


Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Now doesn't this look good!

Did you notice that we got a little 'make-over' here on the blog? Courtesy of this fabulous shop and $25. I LOVE her designs and I keep trying to come up with reasons as to why I need to buy from her. Plus, she was SUPER nice to talk to. (But enough of that - visit my other blog to see my full 'review' on her)

A month has flown by so fast. Okay, so maybe it's not quite a month, but it almost is. I have NO idea where the time goes, or how it goes, what day it is. Kind of crazy.

But here are few photos from the past few days that I'd thought I'd share (I know, not a very smooth transition)These are the most adorable and creative cupcakes I've seen in quite some time. My friend Megan made them for her son's birthday party. SO CUTE!

Claire loved eating her Monkey Cupcake
(and so did Momma - it tasted delightful. White cake + chocolate frosting = my favorite!)


This is Claire and the Birthday Boy. I love how happy he is to be holding the kite string.


I'm supposed to be 'practicing' for a photography class that I signed up for. Of course I totally forgot and the class is tonight... in like 45 minutes... so I took Claire to the park so I could take some 'shots'. First - I can't remember everything I'm supposed to remember. And second - Claire won't look at me on command. Good thing tonight is only the 2nd class.


Ha HA! I got her to look at me.
She was climbing up a ladder and I was at the top of the structure. But she started to catch on and when she'd start to climb and see me, she'd get down and go to a different ladder. I may have to start recruiting 'models' for my practice sessions.

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Ahhh... we're back...

... and you probably didn't even know that we were gone.

Yes, the Lesiw family decided to do a vacation this week. But the problem is that we weren't sure how Claire would do on 'long drives', so we decided to break it up. We left Sunday for Mendocino, and we got back this afternoon. Now on Thursday we'll leave for Monterrey... I know, we're such jet setters.

Anyway, the weather was SO fun: low 50's - high 60's most of the time. So we managed to miss the heat wave back home. (or at least most of it) So here are some photos of what we did while we were there.
Claire walking along the beach... and unfortunately Keen's and rocky beaches don't go well together.


Bob taught Claire to throw rocks in the water - this was one of the only times she actually looked at me when I was taking pictures.

Sea Glass Beach
Rumor has it that there was a tragic love story involving the Glass Factory owner's youngest daughter and one of the workers back around the turn of the 19th century. And then in 1902 disaster struck when a fire destroyed the entire factory. Now all that remains are small, smooth, colorful 'stones' that represent the daughter's undying love that will weather any storm.

Okay, so I just made that story up. Glass Beach is actually the site of a dump back in the 40's. But it's super fun to look for pretty sea glass. I wish I would have brought a bag to put them in.

Claire bringing her 'treasures' to us.


Sea Glass
(my favorite are the green ones... and the really pale blue ones)



Claire enjoying the view... but was pretty much ready to leave.
 
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