If you read my blog regualrly you know that little mister seven just arrived, and we are all waiting on little number eight to arrive at any moment now. (we don't know if it's a little he, or a little she yet!)
What you might not realize, however, is that all eight of my sweet lil' grands have a cousin within a few months of their age.
It makes for perfect playmates when they get together.
One and two are about four weeks apart, and three and four are just a hair over four months apart. Numbers five and six are only two months apart, and the newest little babes will be about a month apart (just like numbers one and two!)
One day last week the two toddlers got to play at Little Cups and Grownups while the older boys were in preschool, and I got a few pictures of them.
How fun is this, to have a little cousin, just your age, to stack cups with...
...and check out the little kitchen with...
...and to spot you on the slide?
Life just doesn't any get better than this.
A splash of Robin's egg blue here and there, a vintage ice cream maker and other ice cream themed items, and some vintage creates...
I've got lots more to add as things thin out, and slowly but surely, everything new is arriving with my new tags...
Remember the dream truck we got nearly a year ago, last spring?
A thing of beauty, it was.
Such a fabulous shade of vintage sage green.
It was perfect in every way, all original.
Which sadly, turned out to be a bit of a challenge.
The old school brakes and lack of power steering made for more than a few hair-raising moments on the road.
My Rock n' Roll Buddy gave me one driving lesson, and well, let's just say that there was a lot of dashboard grabbng, and hollering, and tears were shed.
(And that was just Ralph.)
We won't even go into how upset I was.
So, being as driving the truck turned out to be less than ideal (and completely out of my comfort zone.) we came to the conclusion that what I needed was an old classic truck that had been updated.
Modified with power steering.
And disc brakes.
And so, we sold the wonderful sage green truck (and doubled our money, thankyouverymuch.) and I began searching dilegently online for it's replacement.
Finally, after months of searching online, and a few trips around town to look at potential contenders, I found one on craigslist.
After emailing with the owner, and having him send oodles of additional photos of the truck, I decided this just might be the one. We called and spoke with the owner, and at this point I learned a valuable lesson.
The lesson is this: Pay close attention to the location of the item your inquiring about. (unless you like road trips.)
As we reached an agreement on the time we would meet, and at this point the guy asked where we would be coming from.
"Camas," I said.
"Where's that?", he replied.
(Suddenly it occurred to me that I was just assuming the truck was in our area, because it was listed on the Portland craigslsist.)
It turned out that the perfect truck of my dreams was about three hours away, just a few miles from Seattle.
Fortunately, Ralph and I do like road trips. (and it didn't hurt that Ralph has family up in that area.)
We loaded up, and off we went.
We met the guy and the truck in a bank parking lot and inspected the Seahawk blue classic 1952 Chevy Pickup over, inside and out. It looked like a million bucks, (Complete with that adorable sun visor across the top!)and had all the modern day features I was after.
It was even prettier in person than the photos boasted.
It had been well worth the months of online searching, and the long drive.
I fell in love right there in that bank parking lot all over again. This truck is here to stay.
We headed outside to play with our bubbles.
What is it about a simple little plastic bottle of bubbles that is so magical? So fun? So....aah-mazing?
Some of us were skilled enough to blow a bubble and then catch it on our wand...
...and insist that Gramma Cupcake take a picture...and then another picture of this incredible feat...please?
......and still another, again.
Some of us were much more interested in kicking and chasing balls than chasing bubbles...
New grand babies, a new structure for my department at work, and last night I decided I was ready to change the look up in my booth case at Camas Antiques.
Starting with my tags. The girls at the register clip off the price tags when people pay, and drop them in a drawer to keep track of what you sell in a month.
A good system for sure, but my cute tags end up coming back to me, instead of going home with the customer, where thay can look up my website.
I remedied that by making two different tags.
A little extra work, but I like the look, all simple, and clean, and easy to read.
It's funny to me how inspired to create I can become when making one simple paper craft project. I am sure it sounds ridiculous, but I am now inspired to paint up my little file box I keep all of my pricing tags and ribbons in.
I was at my eensy weensy booth case tonight after work, all lickety-split-like, feebly attempting to fluff and perk things up. Between the snow storm, the weather that followed it, and the newest grand's arrival, I hadn't been down there in two full weeks.
I know, pitiful.
Shame on me.
I am making new extra cute price tags and such, and this Thursday night it will all be back to glorious.
(Thursday night is "Dealer Night" and it's such fun chatting with the other junkers, and re-inventing my space. Wait till you see my new colorway for this makeover!)
Anyway, when I was down there I snapped a few pictures of the latest small window display.
I love the black paper against the wall as a chalkboard looking backdrop.
(Some people's creativity absolutely amazes me!!)
And I love all of the different shades of creams and whites and everything in between.
I left the shop all fired up and inspired to create.....do you do that? Get all hooped-ti-do'd over eye candy?
I bet you do.
I like celebrating life's landmark moments in little unexpected ways. (I always say life is in the details) While an atta-boy moment in life should be met with hoots and hollers, and big high fives, a fabulous and completely personalized lil' sumthin' sumthin' is like the icing on the cupcake to me.
Such was the moment we got to create last Thursday night.
My Rock n' Roll Buddy's youngest son began working for UPS right after high school. Now, if you know anything about UPS, it's a long road to get to becoming a driver for them. (No UPS driver pun intended)
Open spots for drivers don't come up often, and when they do, there is a rigorous process to be considered for a driver's spot.
My Rocker's boy in Brown had his name on the wait list for months, and finally, one day he got the call that he was waiting for, He was invited to start the process to become a driver. There were classes, and written tests to pass, followed by driving tests. More applicants fell off the list with each test, and he hung in there, until he had successfully completed them all.
Then he waited for route to open up.
Once it did, he began the final step; a probationary period of driving.(..including driving each day through our incredible snow storm here a couple of weeks ago!) Then this past Wednesday, after competing his long day on the road, his boss met with him. He shook his hand and gave him the news. After this week, he would be an official UPS driver.
And the youngest driver in the region, at that.
I coulnd't wait to surprise him with a little something to show him just what a big deal we thought it was, and how proud of him we were. I found the perfect (and hilarious) photo on Pinterest. (I love how you can search anything imaginable and there will be several photos pop up that fit your need! I am so happy to live in this age of technology, as I do not remember how I navigated through life before google and pinterest.)
I printed the picture and cut it out, then glued it on one of my dollar store stash of brown gift bags. (Brown bags and kraft paper are my signature wraps) I added the GO BROWN OR GO HOME tag that I printed as well.(A little more UPS humor there...)
Then, I printed the picture again for the top of a large postcard style card for my Rocker and I to write congratulatory notes to the Boy in Brown.
Unexpected, quick and easy, and oh, so much more fun that a typical gift bag.
And, an extra special way to let him know how proud of him we all are.
He was scheduled for a c-section arrival next Monday, but God had other plans.
Funny how that happens.
I fell asleep early tonight, (for me, anyway) before 9:30, and was awakened by the sudden ringing of my phone at midnight.
My Rock n' Roll Buddy was still awake, as he is battling a cold, but more because Richard Sherman and Malcolm Smith were scheduled to be in Jimmy Kimmel (Oh, how we love our Seahawks!)
Anyway, it was my son-in-law, calling to say that little Mister had decided he was going to make today his birthday, so I scurried over to be with the other three little men while they headed on in to the hospital to welcome their newest baby brother.
Now here I sit, just a bit after one in the morning, wide awake with excitement and anticipation; my heart full of prayers for a safe arrival for this precious baby, and his Mama and Daddy.
Oh! I cannot wait to meet him, and hold him,so fresh from God.
You know, I am all about the little pleasures in life. A batch of homemade cupcakes, a candle light breakfast, a bubble bath.
This year, I am trying (Trying) to take better care of myself. Taking a little extra time each week to be kinder to myself, to pamper myself.
With the harsh, colder than normal winter we are experiencing, I want to try and moisturize my skin each morning and night.
As my good luck would have it, the folks at Suave sent me some of their new Suave Professionals® Moroccan Infusion Body Care body lotion to try out, and when I tried it for the first time...well, it surprised me.
Such a luxurious, luscious, yummy feeling. Decedent really. This new line of premium products from Suave Professionals® are infused with authentic Moroccan argan oil.
What's authentic Moroccan argan oil, you ask? I checked, and it's a lightweight miracle oil known to be rich in nutrients and antioxidants.
Anyway, I think they've outdone themselves.
(NEW Suave Professionals® Moroccan Infusion Body Lotion is a daily moisturizer that absorbs quickly for up to 24 hours of radiant, non-greasy hydration)
(The non-greasy part is what really sold me.)
And, it came with a fabulous Moroccan Infusion Dry Body Oil Spray as well...oh my.
It makes my skin feel like velvet.
(And, just like the lotion, the new Suave Professionals® Moroccan Infusion Dry Body Oil Spray has a non-greasy formula that absorbs instantly and seals in long-lasting moisture!)
And, all of this at a price so affordable that I can even keep some in my desk at work for a little mid-afternoon moisturizing on my arms.
Oh, I'm feeling pampered, all right.
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Oh! And I very nearly forgot,there's a pretty sweet sweepstakes going on! For a chance to win a $1,000 gift card, let me know in the comments section below which of the Suave Professionals® Moroccan Infusion Body Care products you would most like to try.
No duplicate comments.
You may receive (2) total entries by selecting from the following entry methods:
This giveaway is open to US Residents age 18 or older. Winners will be selected via random draw, and will be notified by e-mail. You have 72 hours to get back to me, otherwise a new winner will be selected.
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This sweepstakes runs from 2/7/2014-2/28/2014.
Be sure to visit the Suave Professionals® brand page on BlogHer.com where you can read other bloggers’ posts!
We had the chocolate fountain flowing at our SUperbowl party last weekend, and consequently, we had a few big marshmallows eft over. (They were one of the options to choose from to dip in the chocolate)
With the onset of the big snowstorm here this past weekend, I was in hot cocoa mode. (Who am I kidding? I am always in hot cocoa mode.)
And I remembered those marshmallows.
You see, for about the last decade,give or take a year, I have topped my cocoa with whipped cream, and chocolate sprinkles or drizzled chocolate syrup.
(Very enjoyable and quite a fabulous prsentation if I do say so myself.)
Truth be told, I never think about marshmallows, unless I am making rice crispy treats.
That is, until this weekend, as I said above, when I had the left over marshmallows coupled with snowy weather, and the craving for some really special hot cocoa.
I made my usual hot cocoa, but instead of my usual whipped cream, I went old school. I topped it with some big soft yummy marshmallows.
I was immediately transported back in time to my childhood, when we always had mini marshmallows topping off our cups of hot cocoa. I had forgotten the delightful texture of a semi melted marshmallow, all gooey inside, but still a little firm on the outside.
It was a trip down memory lane that warmed me inside and out.
We are experiencing freakishly unusual weather here in my part of the Pacific Northwest. (I know, it's been freakishly unusual pretty much everywhere this winter.) We are in the middle of a very large snowstorm, and it has been delicious so far, I must say.
The last big snowstorm here was five winters ago. I remember that because my first little grand babe was due and we were all a flutter trying to find a way that they could get to the hospital with the roads being so bad.
Now, here we are, doing it all again, and with grand babe number seven due to arrive here in about a week and a half.
(Eeeek! I can hardly wait to meet him, and hold him, and give him some Gramma Cupcake lovin'.)
As long as I mentioned grands...here is another shot of number 6 out enjoying his first ever snow....
Where was I now?
Oh yes, snow.
Anyway, it's been snowing since Thursday afternoon.
They closed my office at noon Thursday so we could all get home safely. (What you need to know here is that because snow storms are not common place here, we do not have large quantities of all of the snow removal big rigs, snow shovels, nor salt for the roads and all that goes with this sort of weather here..... and people here do not know how to drive and navigate the roads.)
I stopped at the grocery for soup (the ultimate snow meal) and scampered home to build a fire.
Friday, my office, along with 90% of the businesses here, was closed, and we all worked from home.
(For the record, while it sounded awesome to me, to be working in my PJ's, gazing out the window at the sheet of white on the lawn, it turns out that I am not as effective working from home.
For starters, some of the stuff I needed to work was unreachable from my home computer, and I am so used to working in a room with other people, that I finally ahd to call a team mate to chat for a ten minute break.
What can I say? I'm a people person.
Now Saturday has arrived, with still more snow expected. (We have a foot in our yard now.) and I am in hot cocoa heaven, let me tell you.
Stay warm and safe this weekend, everybody, and enjoy the winter wonderland going on outside your windows, whatever it may look like.
(oh, the things they can make with recycled plastic these days! It's mind boggling.)
Santa brought this new mailbox and post to us this year, and I am pretty sure all of the neighbors love it too.
This post (and plan) has been a very, very long time in the making. (To give you an idea of just how long, I titled and started this blog post in May of 2012.)
To fully appreciate the new mailbox we installed last weekend, one must picture in our minds the pathetic ghetto original-to-the-house mailbox that was planted here for some thirty years. (I think describing it creates quite a visual in itself, without us needing a photo as evidence.)
Not only was the old at-one-time-black rural mailbox sad to look at, with it's slightly dented ginormous sticker label on one side, shouting in all caps, "DO NOT BLOCK", and its' red metal flag missing long, long ago,but the post was loose in the ground, so when I would open it each day to get the mail, the entire set up, post and mailbox, would flop forward. (Our mail carrier had to love that little "feature".) Upon closing the front of the mailbox, it would flop backwards at an angle.
We took it from ghetto to gorgeous in an afternoon.
(Well, technically two afternoons, as my Rock n' Roll Buddy dug the deep post-hole one day, and then it was just too darned cold to stay outside, so we waited a few days until we hit the 40's and completed the installation job.)
Let's look at it again, from another angle, shall we?
Talk about instant gratification.
Once it was installed, I rushed to plant some red primroses (which I knew would bring on a new cold weather front...and it did.) along some flags for the Superbowl party....
A thing of beauty, indeed.
Oh, how I wish I could have been there last Monday to see the mail carrier's face when she came down our street.
We hosted our annual Superbowl party, which was totally out of control due to the Seahawks being in it.
The halls were decked, and the porch was too......
and I had my usual turf table runner, and banners, and all the fixin's (here's a shot I took mid-way through settinng the buffet table)
Unfortunately I didn't take many pictures at all, other than what you see here. The game itself was not quite as exciting (or as close as was predicted) but we won, and that (coupled with spending the day with friends and family!) made it fantastic.
I can hardly wait until August, when we start it up all over again.
We had quite a big event this week in the family. My grandson has been wanting to do some kind of "business". After some discussion, the idea of a Hot Cocoa Stand at the company where his Daddy, his uncle, and his Gramma Cupcake work came up.
The idea was not to sell hot cocoa, but to give it away, along with cookies, while sharing information about a charity organization that is near and dear to our hearts.
As you may know, one of my precious grands was born in Ghana, Africa. Feeding The Orphans is a wonderful non profit group that cares for orphaned children in Ghana and it's neighboring country of Togo.
The orphanage in Togo had a terrible fire one day shortly before Christmas while the 23 children living there were thankfully not home. Feeding The Orphans is raising the $30,000. to rebuild.
This past Wednesday our little philanthropist was set up and serving up cocoa and charming chit chat with employees.(I took charge of creating the marketing poster for this sweet event....)
He made the little signs for the cocoa toppings himself....
....and it was wildly successful.My two favorite moments from the day? Very early into the cocoa party, I watched Carter carefully add the Swiss Miss to the hot water and stir it for a nice lady employee. as his mom and I looked on, he slowly began to put the chocolatey spoon to his mouth (to lick the spoon!) and his Mom shrieked and said, "oh no, Carter. You cna't lick the spoon!" to which he casually replied, "Why not? I liked it after the last cup."
And later on,his Mom shared with me that he was asked how he had come up with this idea. His response, "I didn't." The customer said, "Oh, who did?" (His Mom said she then held her breath, thinking, "Oh dear, he's going to say it was my idea!") He replied, "God did."
I'm working on a big project at work, (...and loving it! Using my creative side and it's a lot of fun!) gearing up for a very heartwarming event scheduled for this Wednesday morning, (I'l be sharing...just wait!)as well as having half of the grands over this Saturday morning for a Valentine making breakfast.
We will finish off the week with the big fat Superbowl Party, of course.
I told you I had a busy week.
Anyway, I wanted to take a minute to share my latest treasure. Isn't it sweet? I'va always loved this gal's style, and when I saw this charm, I couldn't pass it up.
The sweet little charm proclaiming "She has faith" reassures me, just looking at it. It's how I get through busy weeks like this. For the life of me, I don't have half a clue how folks without faith get through life.
I know I couldn't.
Now that I've shared, it's time to get back to work on some of these projects. Hope you're having a good week, too!
Last year I made some pretty fun Superbowl Party decorating kits for my etsy shop, and I wanted to share them once again. (updated of course, for Superbowl XLVIII.)
Grilled hot dogs (kept warm in a chaffing dish)
Sloppy Joe sliders:We're calling them 12th MANwiches (...Thanks to my friend Carin, and her facebook friend. It was their idea, and I shamelessly stole it.)
Boneless Buffalo Wings
Variety of Chips
Ralph's Aaah-mazing Potato Salad
Veggies and Ranch Dressing (well, something on the table needs to look healthy)
Seahawk Jello Shooters
Itty Bitty Cuppy-cakes ('coz, you know...that's what I do.)
We also always, always have a giant bowl of popcorn on the coffee table with plastic football tumblers to scoop up an individual serving of popcorn between trips to
the dining room for more food.
Besides the food, I've got all of my papergoods handled. All I have to add this year is one more "I" to my banner, and I'm set.
Oh yeah, we're more than ready for some football around here.
The entire Pacific Northwest is giddy over the Pro Football Championship win last weekend. People that don't even know what a field goal is are sporting Seahawks shirts and high fiving each other in the grocery line as they wait to check out.
It's a complete crazy town here.
(And I mean that in a way too-cool-for-school way, not a keep-Portland-weird way.)
As you may be aware, we are all about our football in this house, and as such, we throw one wicked Superbowl fiesta. It may not be the biggest party in town, but it's the best.
We invite only our true football fan-atic friends, because we want to focus all of our attention on the game, and don't want any background chit chat going on about the latest Ryan Gosling movie. (Not that I don't love a good Ryan Gosling movie, I just want to have all of my attention on this game.)
Wait...Has he got a new movie coming out?! I heart him, big-time.
The Notebook is far and away my most favoritest Ryan Gosling movie to date.
But I digress.
Where was I? Oh yes, the Superbowl.
I have my invites nearly ready to give out (tomorrow, people!) and I am ecstatic about the way they turned out.
I got a little obsessive-compulsive when trying to decide exactly which size footballs to use, and so I made prototypes in both sizes.
(I said I was a little obsessive...do you do that too?)
(Say you do.)
I ended up going with the smaller footballs. (from here.)
I printed the party details on my chalkboard-looking background in my little print program, and cut squares of turf, which I had saved from last years party decore.
Then I added ribbons and homemade tags....and they were ready to give to all of our football-loving pals.
Don't hate me because my bag is adorable.
(It is, isn't it?!)
My Rock n' Roll Buddy surprised me with this fabulous-and-oh!-so-me Kate Spade bag for my birthday last month.
I had seen it the season it came out, and couldn't justify the purchase with my budget. Time passed and I kept my eye on the bag on ebay, but still couldn't justify it.
I was beyond thrilled to unwrap it, and love, love, L-O-V-E all the oohs and ahs, and squeals of delight it draws whenever I carry it. (My favorite spot so far was when I set it on my harstylist's counter while getting my hair-did. So many kindred spirits, lusting after my yummy bag!)
Could anything be more perfect for me?
The pro football playoff games have been extra exciting this year for those of us living in the Pacific Northwest. (Go Hawks!) Last Sunday's games had us all on the edge of the sofa, and we are now anticipating an even more exciting game this Sunday.
Not only do I like watching the game (and my Rock n' Roll Buddy's touchdown dances when the Seahawks score) but I like planning the menu, and setting the stage for half-time snacks.
I make team cupcake flags by googling the teams names and looking at "Images" rather than web pages. I copy and past the log into a word document and make the images the size I will want for a cupcake flag (smaller than a postage stamp) I print them, cut them out, and then glue them to toothpicks. Voila'!
Here's a picture from last Sunday, when we had friends gathered to cheer for their respective favorite teams that made it to the playoffs. It was as easy as that.........unless I ask the sewing queen to help, and she glues the Saints logo on upside down.
We got things corrected last Sunday when this happened, and all was good in Seahawks territory.
Oh yes, football season has created a whole new frontier in my entertaining world, and I'm loving that part of it as much as the games. This Sunday's final playoff game is gonna be huge.
My daughter and I stumbled upon eight of these ginormous framed and matted prints at Salvation Army a couple of weeks ago, priced at $15.00 each. (They must have been from a hotel or something...?) It was supposed to be a half off day, and when we arrived at opening time, they had changed the sign.
So, we didn't buy them.
A few days later when half off day finally did arrive she went back and miraculously, they were still there! She got them all, and I bought two of them from her.
I reinvented the first one last week, and I was very happy with the way it turned out.
I used my signature old book pages as a matt behind the chalkboard print I designed and printed on my computer.
The longest part of the entire project was getting the matt and old print out of the frame, 'coz they had used some serious tape all around the back, as well as those little tacks holding the matt board in place.
I was completely thrilled with the outcome, and if we had room on awall here at home, I would replace the smaller framed copy of that quote that I have in our entryway now.
Instead, I took it down to my case at Camas Antiques, and it will find a place in someone else's home.
Next time you're out thrifting, look a little closer at the frame and matt job on pictures, and you just might find yourself a treasure in the making.