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Thursday, November 28, 2013

Bunting Advent Calender Tutorial

After much consideration, I decided to make a bunting advent calendar for Parker and Kaden this year. The problem with a lot of advent calendars that I found online were that the pocket for gifts was too small to fill with anything significant. I settled on the bunting design because 1. it allowed me to make the pocket as big as I wanted 2. it very easily doubles as festive decor for the house and 3. it's a lot of bang for your buck! Here is my simple tutorial on how to create your own bunting advent calendar.

Materials Needed
3 coordinating fabrics, 1/2 yard each
5 yards of trim/ribbon (I used ball fringe)
1 spool of matching thread
5 sets of Thickers
1 isosceles triangle template with legs that are 7 in and a base that is 6 in

1. Cut out triangle template on cardstock or any thick paper (I used one side of a manila folder).
2. Use your template to cut out your fabric triangles. You will need 16 triangles cut from each of your 3 fabrics. Match your triangles into pairs (8 pairs for each fabric type). This is the longest step of the process.
3. The front of the bunting pocket will need to be a little lower than the back. Take each "front" triangle and fold it half an inch down from the top. Sew with 1/2 inch seam allowance to make a neat edge. Repeat 24 times.
4. Lay each front and back triangle right sides together and sew with a 1/4 inch seam allowance on both sides.
5. Flip each triangle pocket inside out. I used a chopstick to make sure the point was extra pointy. You can use any pointy stick to do this.
6. Press each triangle so it's flat.
7. Starting 6 inch from the start of the trim, sew all the triangles onto the trim leaving an inch between each triangle. You can space it out even more if you like but keep in mind how much trim you have!
8. Lay the bunting on the ground and admire your handy work.
9. Using tacky glue, apply the thickers in random order numbering each triangle at random 1-24. There are sooo many options for how to number each little flag. I chose to use the thickers because I have terrible handwriting and I liked the look of them. The only problem was that each set only had so many number 2s so we had to buy a lot of sets.
10. Let glue dry, hang your advent calendar and fill it with little treats!

Monday, November 25, 2013

Mini Me Look - Olive Coat

Happy Monday, Mamas! I'm sooo excited that this is a short week. We had our first Thanksgiving last night with my family in Orange County and I'm still sleepy from my food coma. This weekend was super productive. Tuan and Minh got the fish tank up and running and we are going to be able to add hermit crabs and shrimp by the end of the week! Woo hoo. Tuan and I also did three mini holiday sessions before the Thanksgiving party and I can't wait to look at all the photos tonight.

Let's get to the fashion now, shall we? I found this handsome man in River Island gear on the I Am Galla blog. Hope you enjoy today's mini me look!

[River Island jacket & bag]

Friday, November 22, 2013

Happy Friday!

It's finally Friday! Thanks for checking in today but I have info to share. I didn't manage to complete my weekly roundup of fun winter events (check out Red Tricycle for a good list), I didn't put together a cute mini me outfit and I didn't manage to take any nice photos of the quilt I finished last weekend. It's been a hectic few days.

You know what did happen last night? I baked these jalapeno cornbread muffins for my office Thanksgiving potluck. And you wanna know what happened this morning in the car? Parker said "ma mum" for the first time!! That makes up for the lack of everything else in my book. Hope everyone has a nice weekend :)

Thursday, November 21, 2013

Custom Silhouette Ornaments

I'm in love with these laser cut silhouette ornaments from Le Papier Studio! The design is simple but still very special and unique. Would it be too much if I ordered one of these for Parker and made hand print ornaments?


[$30 for an ornament with the whole family]

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Mini Me Look - Black Tie

You know what we need more of? Babies in suits. It's an instant way to make your regular baby a dapper baby. Surprisingly there are very few well made suits for baby boys. Thank goodness for Zara! Enjoy this black tie mini me look that would brighten up any holiday photo.
[Hunky guy spotted on Pinterest]

Monday, November 18, 2013

A Nativity Scene for Baby

I made some space in one of the cubby holes in Parker's room this weekend for his nativity scene. My intention was to make one but clearly that wasn't happening so we bought this wooden peg doll set from Target instead. Target saves the day...again! I also bought the little wooden house from Target (it turns into a shelf). Parker loves the colorful wooden dolls and none are safe from his grabby little hands. I keep having to tell him not to smash baby Jesus and one of the wisemen went missing for a couple of days. I'm actually really surprised that the angels still have their wings. The only thing missing? The ox and the lamb. This will just have to do for now.
Checking this one off our Christmas activity list!
[Perfect for baby's little hands]
[Mary used to have a halo...until Parker pulled it off]
[A close up of the 3 wise men]

[Forgive the crazy hawaiian shirt. We went to a luau themed birthday party this weekend.]

Friday, November 15, 2013

9 Month Check Up

We took Parker to his 9 month check up yesterday and Dr. Boies says he's doing great. He's growing right on track though he is (and probably always will be) a little on the short side. That's no great surprise since Tuan and I are shorties. We received instructions to install a baby gate, increase the amount of solid meals to 3 a day and to post the poison control center phone number around the house.

A moment of panic came when we were about to leave and Dr. B said "See you in 3 months at his 1 year check up!" Ahhhh...only 3 more months? I better really start planning his party and getting my act together.

[Parker in the car on our way to the doctor]

Wednesday, November 13, 2013

The Baby Weight is Gone!

I weighed myself this morning and I am officially back to my pre baby weight! Ironically it took exactly 9 months to drop the 60 pounds I gained during pregnancy. And while the weight is gone, there is some flabby stuff that still needs to be worked on. So wish me luck as I try to tone up.


Celebrating the Holidays in San Diego

Here are my top picks of festive ways to celebrate the season locally. Super mom status is achieved if you can accomplish half of this list! I will be adding a few of these as fun things to do for Parker's advent calendar. Hope to see you out and about!

1. Visit a Christmas tree farm
Nothing reminds me of the holidays more than the smell of a fresh pine tree. This year I want to take Parker to a Christmas tree farm so he can pick out his own mini tree to decorate. There are plenty of lots that sell pre cut trees but just 3 legit Christmas tree farms.

Family Christmas Tree Farm
300 Pepper Drive
El Cajon, CA 92021

House Evergreen Forest
3036 N. Victoria Drive
Alpine, CA 91901
619-445-8300 (worst email address eevveerr)

Pine Tree Acres
620 Haverford Road
Ramona, CA 92065

2. Have a snow day
It may not snow in San Diego but every year there seems to be snow around San Diego. Your best bet is to wait for the weatherman to announce that there is snow falling in Laguna Mountain, Julian or Palomar Mountain. Don't want to wait? Just head to Big Bear for a snow day.

3. December Nights
Balboa Park December Nights, the nation’s premier holiday festival, will take place for the 35th consecutive year on Friday, Dec. 6, 3-11pm, and Saturday, Dec. 7, noon-11pm. As always, the event brings families and friends together to spread holiday joy, learn more about the cultural value of Balboa Park and kick-off the “most wonderful time of the year.”

Participating Balboa Park museums open their doors free of charge from 5-9 pm both evenings and more than 350,000 visitors are expected to experience the joy of San Diego’s largest free community festival. Those who attend will participate in a truly multicultural experience, enjoying food, music and entertainment from around the world.

4. Go ice the sea
Every year the Hotel Del Coronado transforms Windsor Lawn into an outdoor ice skating rink adjacent to Coronado Beach overlooking the Pacific Ocean. The rink will be open from November 27 to January 5. For more information, visit Hotel Del Coronado's website.

5. Attend a Christmas Tree Lighting
There are a number of tree lighting celebrations throughout San Diego every holiday season. I would love to be able to go to the one in Coronado or Balboa Park. For a complete list, check out this article on Red Tricycle.

6. Check out some Christmas lights
Some people take their Christmas lights seriously. I'm not one of those people but I do enjoy driving through nicely decorated neighborhoods. Here is the link to a list of some of the best Christmas light displays in San Diego. Wanna be super fancy about your Christmas light viewing? Book a tour with Masterpiece Limos. Other options for checking out light displays is the Holiday of Lights at the Del Mar Fairgrounds and the San Diego Bay Parade of Lights.

7. Take photos with Santa at Seaport Village
The Santa's available for photo ops in Seaport Village this year look legit! Much better than the mall Santa I saw at Fashion Valley. I'm top of that, I'm sure Seaport Village will be decked out for the holidays. Can't wait for Parker's first crying photo with Santa.

8. Make an ornament
These handprint ornaments are a simple way to capture how small Parker's hands are at this first Christmas. Visit You're So Martha for full instructions. Too lazy? You can buy this kit from Pearhead. These would make great holiday gifts for gushing grandparents.

9. Make a nativity scene
Help your little one get into the real spirit of Christmas and celebrate the birth of Jesus but making a baby friendly nativity scene. I love this simple wooden project available from Caravan Shoppe. Don't have time to make this project? Target has some cute wooden peg doll nativity characters available in store too!

10. Jungle Bells
For a wild twist to holiday festivities, take in the Zoo's annual Jungle Bells celebration. Starting Saturday, Dec. 15 through January 6 2013, families can put a wild-animal twist on familiar holiday traditions during the Zoo's 2012 Jungle Bells celebration. The Zoo will stay open until 8 p.m. each night except Dec. 24 - when it will close at 5 p.m.

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Mattress Shopping

I'm so stoked that our new mattress is being delivered today! Thanks to Tuan for going to the mattress store at 8 PM last night to take care of it.
We've been sleeping on a queen bed for years and everything was hunky dory until Parker started sleeping sideways and hogging at the space. Our new mattress is a cal king which is gonna be awesome except for the fact that it's going to be a pain in the butt to find bedding that I like. Why are all call king sheets and duvet covers so ugly?? If any of you have tips on where to find good cal king sheets I am all ears.
[Tuan and Parker testing out mattresses last weekend]

Monday, November 11, 2013

Blue and Green Plaid - For the whole family?

How amazing would it be if Tuan and I got these outfits and Parker wore this?? Haha

Sweater Leggings - Yes or No?

I'm totally obsessed with these fair isle sweater leggings. Tuan thinks they are crazy but I cannot stop looking that them. What do you think?

Brunch at Champagne Bakery

Sunday afternoon we took the boys to brunch at Champagne Bakery in Carmel Mountain. They noshed on mum mums while we had brunch. Parker sat by the entrance and stared down every person who walked through the door. That's my son!

Parker's Christmas List

This list is for all of our family & friends who are generously planning on getting Parker a Christmas gift this year. Happy Holidays!
Parker's Christmas List
Likes: robots, superheroes, books, cardboard boxes, fish, mum mum crackers
1. A saltwater fish tank. Obviously, we can't have everyone buy a fish tank but a gift card or cash so we can pick up some tank supplies and fish at Aquatic Warehouse would be greatly appreciated!

2. We are in desperate need of toy storage solutions. This cute monster storage from P'kolino is fun and baby friendly. I like that it zips up so that he can't take everything out again once I put it away.

[$29.99 at P'kolino]
3. Boon Catch Bowl with Spill Catcher. There are other suction bowls available online. This one was most highly rated but I'm sure there are others that are good too. Little man is ready to start feeding himself!

[$18.99 on Amazon]

4. A fun ball pit! Gotta love colorful inflatable toys. It makes it harder for him to find ways to hurt himself.

[$41.77 on Amazon]

5. Gift cards to H&M, Zara or Gap. Those are our favorite places to shop!

6. Mini Book of Names & Faces from Pinhole Press. Parker would love one of these with photos of his favorite aunties, uncles, cousins and grandparents. There are other books like this available online. I like this one because it is a board book and would be hard for him to destroy.
[$29.99 on Pinhole Press]
7. Pajamas! Size 6-12 months. Here are some I like from Gap.
[Classic plaid pajamas from Gap]

[$24.95 Sleep sets from Gap]
8. Sensory Balls

[$24.99 on Amazon]
9. That's not my books. Parker's favorite book is "That's Not My Dinosaur". I'm sure he would like some other books from that collection too.

[Availabe on Amazon]
10. A baby gate. Ok well maybe this one is more for me and Tuan but Parker is on the verge of being able to walk everywhere and we need to make sure he doesn't fall down the stairs.

[$54.99 at Target]
11. Alphablock Book. I love the illustrations in this book! Must have.
[$14.19 on Amazon]
 12.Tool Trolley. How cool is this thing??
[$90 on Giggle]
This is all I can think of at this time. I may add more items before Christmas. 


Land of Nod Holiday 2013

Love all the fun holiday items at Land of Nod!

Friday, November 8, 2013

Good (Dental) Hygiene + Happy 9 Months Parker!

Happy 9 months to Parker! Little man is growing up so fast. He took his first steps a couple of days ago. Here are some photos I snapped yesterday of Parker and Kaden brushing their teeth before bed.

Thursday, November 7, 2013

H&M Holiday 2013

Christmas is right around the corner and it's time to get the house ready for the parties that will take place at our house. Lucky for us, H&M home has a great selection of very affordable holiday items available online! Seriously, I cannot even express how happy I am that H&M finally has an online store. I know it's been out for a few months now but I am still not over it. My favorite is probably the gift sack. Totally getting one so I can haul all the kids' Christmas gifts to OC this year (and haul Parker's gifts home). Right now H&M is running a 24% off any item of your choice offer + free shipping over $50 with code 1022. Happy shopping!

Rebecca Minkoff - Knocked Up Diaper Bag

I know I said my next diaper bag is going to be a backpack but this Rebecca Minkoff bag makes me want to reconsider. I've always been attracted to the clean lines that are inherant in all Rebecca Minkoff bags. And look at that leather! Like butter. Love it. Want it. Diaper bag envy. This is what my life has come to. Hahaha.

[Available on ShopBop]

Wednesday, November 6, 2013

Baby with a Swollen Eye

Monday Parks woke up with a swollen left eye. I had no idea what the cause was so I kept him home from daycare and called Dr. Boies to see if she could see him. It didn't seem to be bothering him much and he was in good spirits. I thought maybe it was a stye so I waited until he fell asleep and applied a warm compress. Little man wasn't having any of that though and he flipped over to block me. When we got to the doctor's office, Dr. B checked him out, checked his bother for any signs of a rash or allergic reaction, checked his eye movement and then concluded that the red swelling was probably caused by an allergic reaction. She said he probably touched something while crawling around and then touched his eye. Awesome. So I got to spend the day at home with P and used up another 8 hours of PTO.  This morning, the swelling has gone down considerably and I think he will live another day. 
[P and his one asian eye]


 [It's never a dull day with Parker! Here he is yelling at our dogs.]

[He also learned a new fun trick on Monday. His eye is still swollen in this video.]