Friday Favorites

9.30.2011

Love this vignette from A Merry Mishap - the browns, the blacks, the pillows!

Need a laugh? Check out Stuff Mikey Says and Stuff Mikey Says Vol. 2. My favorite line: “I like everyone in my class, mom. Well, except for Margaret. She’s my only foe.” (By the way - he's a second grader, people!) And speaking of stuff kids say - here's a future hiker poet in the making.

On determining a blogger's klout worth.

I love the idea of this We Love Mail competition from Taxi that Grace posted over on Design Sponge! I'd like to start sending more snail mail and am even waxing nostalgic for the days of having a pen pal as a kid. Anyone want to be my pen pal? :)




People with babies + small spaces rejoice! Puj tubs in COLOR. PLUS an adorable (albeit pricey) wooden play gym.

Wild horses and 'geeky' glasses.

Pumpkin whoopie pies. Need I say more?


Happy Friday all!

Guest Posting on the Culinary Couple

I'm guest posting over on the Culinary Couple today! Emily and Nick just had their adorable baby boy, Samuel and I'm filling in while they are learning the fine art of parenting a newborn. Click over to check out my list of newborn essentials:


Congratulations to Nick & Emily!

So far...



Excited to get my hands on my dollhouse bounty and break out the paint and fabric to personalize everything! I'm thinking I need more pink in the mix. Oh yeah, and I need to put the actual house together too...

I put one together in college for an art project...hopefully I can do it again!

Color Craze

9.29.2011

Clockwise from top left: blocks, pins, vase, vessel, throw, tools, lines, mobile, pillow

Manuel Canovas Misia

Okay, so this fabric by Manuel Canovas keeps popping up on different design blogs, and every time I see it I become completely obsessed! It is a little lot out of my price range so I doubt it's going to end up anywhere in my home, but I've been trying to think of alternatives. Like crazy stuff, people. I saw this plain solid roman shade for instance and thought, maybe I could paint the design onto that? Not that I've ever painted/dyed/done anything remotely like that with fabric in my life...



Sigh, what's a girl to do?




Or I guess I could be less of a bother and just go with a different fabric? Suggestions?





Image 1, 2, 3, 4

iPhone Randomness

9.27.2011

top to bottom . left to right
watching her friend color with sidewalk chalk
eating corn on the cob for the first time
testing out Violet's Halloween costume
morning with Mommy
feeling sick & snuggling with Daddy
out for a walk in the sunshine

Shine On

Thanks for all of the well wishes we received yesterday. Violet had another visit with the doctor today and we're hoping she's on the path to being a healthy and happy little girl again. With that said, I'd like to turn the conversation to another (less serious) topic that's been on my mind lately - in a few short months I'm going to be turning the big 3-0 - Ack!

I remember thinking as a child that twenty sounded sooo grown up. Then I got there and I didn't feel like such a grown-up after all. I have a feeling that thirty will be much the same. My mom still says she doesn't know what she wants to be when she 'grows up'. As I get older I understand more and more what she means.

Anyway, I digress. I've been thinking a lot lately about turning thirty. I haven't really had a big party since I was a kid - I'm pretty happy with having my mom (or husband) cook me a yummy meal and having cake (or my favorite - fruit pizza). But thirty is kind of a big deal - isn't it? So if I were to have a party, here's one of my favorite grown-up 'themes' - metallics!


Some of these items (Geronimo balloons, Confetti System pinata) are a little pricey, but I think could be easily DIY'ed. Have you reached a milestone birthday recently? How did you celebrate?

Mothers Know Best.

9.26.2011
Sorry for a bit of a heavy post on a Monday morning, but Violet has been sick since Friday and there isn't much else on my mind these days. Our normally happy and active little girl has been tired and listless - the sparkle missing from those big blue eyes. It breaks my heart to see her like this. Posting about home design and pretty products just doesn't seem quite right when your child isn't well, does it? So instead I'm going to write about some thoughts that have been swirling through my mind these past few days in between taking temperatures, wiping noses, and comforting my little girl. (For those who aren't up for a wordy and somewhat serious post this morning, I've included some photos of the babe at her happiest and healthiest.)



Between caring for a sick child and reading this post by Melissa over on Dear Baby, I've had a flood of memories from Violet's first few months return to me these past few days. Blood draws where they dug around in my baby's arm for what felt like hours while I restrained her, sang to her, tried to comfort her. Hospital visits where they couldn't get an IV into her arm, hands, or feet, so the doctors finally had to place it in her head. Upper GI's, endoscopies, and sigmoidoscopies. Patch testing and skin prick testing. Ultrasounds, CT scans - the list seems never-ending.



We've been through a lot, but one memory in particular stands out in my mind. Our last visit to the hospital emergency room. After an entire night of violent vomiting, our little girl was dehydrated and lethargic. Her little body was limp and her eyes vacant. I remember dialing 911, wondering if this was really happening. Wishing that it was a bad dream that maybe I could wake myself up from.



A long story short, after being up all night, completely dehydrated, and treated as a pincushion for the majority of the day, she was finally getting some much needed sleep in my arms when a sweet nurses' assistant dropped by to warn me that they would be coming to draw more of Violet's blood shortly. I politely, but flatly refused. Violet was finally getting some much-needed sleep - something much more healing than yet another blood test could possibly be at the moment. The nurse's assistant was very nice about it, said that she understood, but that the RN would probably be in to talk to me. And talk to me she did - she arrived minutes later, ready for combat. After some intense arguing, I caved under her insistence and allowed the blood draw despite my strong feelings against it.



Looking back, I blame my weakness on the fact that I was physically and emotionally drained at that point. It's one of the few things that I look back on in our experience with the medical world and think, I wish I would have done that differently. Most of the time I've been proud of how I've stood up to the naysayers and done the right thing for my daughter. Sometimes I think that hospitals and doctors get so caught up in protocol and testing that they forget their first and most important role - to help the patient heal.



One of the biggest lessons things I've learned since becoming a parent is to trust my instincts. I've been questioned, second-guessed, and even dismissed by others on everything from how often I nursed Violet to the symptoms of her condition. Had I not ignored those doctors, nurses, and yes, even family members and friends and instead done what I thought was right for her, who knows how sick she may have become.



I'm not writing this post to toot my own horn or to put down those that gave us bad advice. What I want to let other mothers out there know what I've discovered to be true, and that is this: you know what is right for your child above all others. No one is more in tune with a child's needs and feelings than her mother. Trust yourself and do what you think is best.

There is nothing in this world more important than the health of our loved ones.

Here's hoping for a healthier week. Hope you enjoyed the pictures :)

After a Long Search...

9.23.2011
I pulled the trigger and bought this:
It's a Melissa & Doug wooden dollhouse kit called Christy's Cottage. I love the simple and traditional look, the cute stairs and front porch, and mainly the open floor plan. I feel like dollhouses can get very chopped up with little rooms and become difficult to actually play with. Since I want this to become a toy for Violet one day, I need it to be functional as well as pretty. The one thing I may not have space for is a kitchen, so I might eventually buy an 'addition'? Or just do a little kitchenette sorts - I mean, it is make believe, right? I also am not sure if I'm going to have a bathroom or just go with an office instead.

As far as price, Christy's Cottage retails for $199.99 and even with the 15% off that M&D is offering through the challenge it was too expensive for me. I was looking for something that was closer to $100. Then I did a Google search and found it on this site for $113.99 - score! And then I did another search for coupon codes and got an additional $5 off. Luckily the shipping was very reasonable as well.

In the end with shipping I ended up paying $128. Through Melissa & Doug's site the total cost (with the 15% off plus shipping) would have been $179, so I'm pretty happy with my purchase.

Now comes the fun part - decorating! Okay, I guess first I have to assemble the thing. Does anyone else out there have experience with the House that Jack Built wooden dollhouses? Do they go together pretty easily?

Wish me luck!

Well, it's not a dollhouse but...

9.22.2011
So I still didn't buy a dollhouse yet, but I did buy an accessory of sorts:

Won't it look so cute parked outside of Violet's dollhouse?! Now her family of dolls can take road trips and everything. Now to find the actual house...

(You can find the vintage travel trailer here)

Mini-Decorating

Have you guys heard about the I'm a Giant Challenge from Emily Henderson?! A ton of bloggers are participating including Nicole Balch of Making it Lovely and Jenny Komenda of Little Green Notebook. It's perfect timing for me. I've been slowly collecting funiture from Etsy, Ebay, and thrift stores for Violet's future dollhouse. They are hoping that readers participate in the challenge as well, so I think this will be a good kick in the butt for me to get things moving. I haven't been able to decide on a dollhouse just yet, but here are a few favorites that I've come across in my search:

The Arne Jacobsen Design Dollhouse from Minimii:
(More modern than what I want but love it nonetheless! It would be perfect for my sister though)





The Melissa & Doug Walton Dollhouse:


Classic Bungalow by Real Good Toys:



I am thinking something cozy but with a somewhat open floor plan. I'm on the hunt and open to suggestions! Are any of you participating?





P.S. Dollhouse inspiration!
 

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