Archive for November, 2008

Who knew two-year-olds could sit still?

November 29, 2008

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Not me!

This little love is Henry’s pal, and Henry could learn a lot about SITTING STILL FOR A MINUTE from his friend.

Just a sneak preview from today for his family.

Shannon, you all are up next, haven’t forgotten about you! 🙂

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In other news, I’m roasting a giant turkey right now. Because who can get enough of Thanksgiving and turkey? Oh, and for Thanksgiving dessert?

Completely deviated from your suggestions and tradition and went with Smitten Kitchen’s Silky Chocolate Pudding with whipped cream. Try it, you will NOT be disappointed. I think we might have started a new tradition.

Hope you are having a wonderful post-holiday weekend.

Food Friday: Shop at Etsy!

November 28, 2008

Please, like you’re cooking anything besides two slices of toast for your turkey sandwich today. You don’t need a recipe today, you need advice on how to make your holiday shopping experience as relaxing and rewarding as possible.

So go make that sandwich, giggle at the idea of being on a long, aggravating line at Best Buy, put a log on the fire and flex your index finger— there is some amazing handmade wonderfulness out there in Etsyland. If your goal is to keep this holiday season as simple as possible, buying handmade is a great place to start.

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I love this seatbelt bag by Interrobang, available here for $58. Yes, those are real seatbelts. This bag is tough as nails.

A H&W reader suggested PDX Beanies, with gems like this one.

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Every parent with a camera needs to know about this shop. Was that a PDX Beanie that Hannah was wearing at our shoot?

This same parent suggested Superflykidz for superhero capes, but the creative whiz behind the capes seems to be very backlogged. Handy with a sewing machine? Get in the business of making capes. Superflykidz is making 50 a day and can’t keep up!

Another friend suggested the delicious JC Handmade, with tons of goodies. I wish these were for sale, not just a pattern and tutorial—a child’s coloring wallet!

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My boys would carry these all over the house, much like the sequined purses they often use to carry their cars. 🙂

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If you know anyone with a teeny weeny at home, or someone who is expecting one (or more!), you might want to know about Kaya’s Kloset–home to handmade soft-soled shoes for babies. SIGH. So sad we are past that stage at our house.

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I’ll take these from Linda Trent Jewelery. Which ones do you like?

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And I have a new favorite place for kid shirts: Jackopotamus. Check their website for even more neato styles.

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I love applique t-shirts for kids, and this onesie is no exception, from WideEyedMusings. Oh, and silkscreened ones, too, like this airplane from MyLittleDear.

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If your cell phone or iPod or iPhone needs something cozy wrapped around it, I’d pick this little cutie. Janine King’s shop has bags of all sizes, in amazing fabrics.

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I can’t get enough of the offerings at SmallTownToys on etsy, especially this little wooden orange car. I can think of about 40 little ones that need this exact car.

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Despite my affection for things digital, I love gorgeous paper, stationery and invites. With all these lovely gifts, you’ll need these letterpress (be still my heart) cards from Smockpaper for thank yous.

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This just scratches the surface of the amazing etsy community. I’m anxious to hear what you’re finding on etsy.com –or elsewhere if you’ve got some good deals to share. For editor’s picks at etsy updated regularly, go to (where else) the etsy blog!

Happy shopping!

Snugglebug

November 26, 2008

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Just one of the many things I am truly thankful for this year.

Happy Thanksgiving, all.

Thanksgiving dessert and a wedding

November 25, 2008

Well, I wasn’t even in the same contest with the people that did take top honors in the Make the Mammoth Men Laugh contest. I almost fell OFF MY CHAIR when I saw the Mammoth Men in leotards—my naked beach boys had nothing on that.

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Still not sure what we’re making for Thanksgiving dessert, can I just have one of each of your suggestions so I can decide? Thank you. If you volunteered a recipe, the answer is, of course, YES I WANT IT.

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Actually getting down to personal photos after all the OPK photos. I just sorted through a few snaps I took at a gorgeous fall wedding of two friends more than a month ago, aren’t they a beautiful couple? And fun, too. It was a great party, filled with emotion.

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Told you they were fun.

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Happy love!

The one about Bronx Mowgli and Thanksgiving dessert

November 23, 2008

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I’ve spent the last two weeks communing with my computer, editing what I’m guessing is several thousand photos. I love this one, despite the obvious technical flaws. And I love that I can love such an imperfect photo.

Not much else to report here except:

1. Still not sure what to make as a contribution for Thanksgiving dessert. Pumpkin pie spoken for–any ideas?

2. I have come to the conclusion that  Lightroom is like digital crystal meth, while Photoshop is like digital oatmeal, the slow-cooked kind. I love love love LR, but it makes me feel slick and a little empty inside because it is so fast and crazy and wheeee! I’m not sure if oatmeal or meth will win–any opinions out there in the crowd?

3. The one diversion I allowed myself this week, besides wincing briefly over poor Bronx Mowgli Wentz‘s name, was to follow along with the Mammoth Men, a heartbreakingly talented crew of 12 male photographers who severely and thoroughly documented their third “mancation” together this past week. Sadly, I’ve won NONE of the excellent swag being promoted by their sponsors so far, but hope flickers eternal. Below you’ll find my pathetic entry for their “Make the Mammoth Men Laugh” contest, which echoes some of their favorite activities in the past week. I don’t think it has a prayer of nabbing a win among their talented followers, but it does mean I have a ready-made BEST SHOT MONDAY. Hope my little Mammoth Men don’t hold this one against me someday, but look at the swag!

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4. I was serious about suggestions for Thanksgiving dessert.

For more Best Shot Monday, click here!

Etsy and OPK

November 19, 2008

Enjoying these incomprehensible headlines?

Busy week here, how about you? So busy, in fact, that I just discovered that THANKSGIVING is next week. Immediately followed by CHRISTMAS ten minutes later. Sweet pumpkin pie in a pan, HOW DID THIS HAPPEN?

Help a disorganized mama out. Tell me your favorite Etsy.com shop, because I have a few of my own that I want to share, and I do love shopping for the homemade lovelies on Etsy. Kid stuff and grownup stuff, please!

In the meantime, enjoy these homemade lovelies.

(Enjoy that phrase–in the running as Most Awkward Transition Phrase in entire history of blogging.)

OPK=Other People’s Kids


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OPK

November 17, 2008

I’m always delighted to photograph Other People’s Kids, because mine? Well, it is a rare day I get more cooperation than this:

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Which is why I don’t take their Christmas photo. She does, thank goodness.

But Other People’s Kids? Another story all together!

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My Best Shot? I can’t pick. You decide.

Maine in pictures. Part 2.

November 13, 2008

Soooo, after shooting like a crazy person all fall, I have about eleventy billion photos to post. Pull up a chair and stay awhile, won’t you? JUST KIDDING.

I did just notice that I said Maine, Part 1 a few weeks ago, which suggests there ought to be a part 2. And there is.

Ellen and other Maine types who will be interested, I am actually going to send you the link to the rest of these early next week, can you believe it? Oh, and our summer photos will be in there, too. You are awfully patient with me.

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Will at the coolest playground in Maine, possibly in the world.


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Henry and Jake at the picnic table.

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Sweet Caroline at the playground.

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Jack and Will going for big air.

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She actually does have two arms. Really.

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Because you can never have enough jumping photos.

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Yum.

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Thank you for a wonderful visit, we loved it!

Because I had nothing else to do

November 10, 2008

My husband and I discovered hulu.com tonight, and this is one of those moments we’ll look back and laugh about someday when watching TV on your computer is commonplace, like next week.

“Honey! Come quick! I’m watching this here teevee on the computer–see, you press the button, like dat and you watch a teevee show!”

Before you fill my comment mailbox telling me this isn’t EXACTLY new, I KNOW you can download shows from iTunes or stream them on network sites and YouTube. But this is different. Clearly someone was listening last year when I wrote about our favorite reruns during last November’s writer’s strike.

Because now? I can watch a show I missed last week (SNL Election Special) or I can watch a show that I last watched in 1984 (Square Pegs) while sitting next to my sister in our flannel nightgowns, looking like this.

ALSO.

I can watch this and this. (I can’t figure out how to embed. But worth clicking on.)

If they ever get Moonlighting, I’m completely finished.

How about you? What are you going to watch on Hulu.com as soon as you finish commenting here?

Got to go, I have a date with Sonny Crockett.

(Only click if you want to hear the Miami Vice theme song. I do!)

Food Friday: Spiderweb Pumpkin Ginger Cupcakes

November 7, 2008

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Okay, so I’ve been holding off posting these because I do like to actually post things I HAVE ACTUALLY MADE. But since this last week or so has been exceptionally busy, if I posted things I have actually made recently you would be reading about oatmeal and grilled cheese right now.

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So let’s assume that this gorgeous recipe from this gorgeous book (Cupcakes by Eleanor Klivans or the companion Cupcake Deck) is amazing. Everything else I have made from this collection is yummy and fantastic, and if I actually do get to make them YOU WILL BE THE FIRST TO KNOW. Or maybe second or third.

I am looking forward to a quiet moment in my kitchen with this seasonal cupcake recipe, but if you get to it first I will gladly help you critique the recipe.

Spiderweb Pumpkin Ginger Cupcakes

Cupcakes
1 1/2 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
3/4 tsp. baking powder
3/4 tsp. baking soda
1/4 tsp. salt
1 tsp. ground cinnamon
1 tsp. ground ginger
1/2 cup unsalted butter, melted and cooled slightly
1 cup sugar
1 cup canned pumpkin
3 large eggs
1/4 cup crystallized ginger, cut into 1/8 – 1/4 inch pieces

Frosting
1/2 cup butter, room temperature
6 oz. cream cheese, room temperature
1 tsp. vanilla extract
3 cups powdered sugar
1/2 – 1 tsp. ground cinnamon
1 – 2 tsp. whole milk

Cupcakes
Pre-heat oven to 325 degrees. Sift all the dry ingredients together and set aside. In the bowl of an electric mixer, beat butter, sugar, and pumpkin until smooth. Mix in eggs and crystallized ginger, and then slowly mix in the dry ingredients until everything is incorporated. Spoon batter into your muffin tin. If you are using a silicone one, you can fill the cups all the way to the top. If not, place cupcake papers into a metal tin and fill halfway. Bake until firm, about 20 minutes or so. Cool on rack.

Frosting
Beat butter, cream cheese, and vanilla until smooth. Add powdered sugar until frosting is smooth and light.
Set aside 1/4 cup of frosting, and mix cinnamon into this until it turns a light brown color. Add a touch of milk, so frosting is thick but pourable. Place in a sealable freezer bag with all air pressed out, and cut a tiny hole in one of the bag’s corners. This is now a makeshift pastry bag.

Frost cooled cupcakes with white frosting then, using the brown frosting, pipe a dot in the center of the cupcake, and two concentric circles around the dot. Drag a toothpick from the cupcake center to the edge to create the spiderweb pattern.

Embarrassing Halloween Photos

November 6, 2008

Okay, so look at it this way–now that you’ve looked at the 47 million OTHER Halloween photos on the web from family and friends, you now have some free time to view these. Which, of course, is why I waited.

I don’t know which is more embarrassing—the complete lack of creativity in my children’s zip-and-go costumes, or my own attire. I was totally last minute Alaskan Sarah, inspired by my sister who A) has a flute and B) wears Sarah-ish glasses on a regular basis and C) makes a much better Sarah Palin than I do.

I will spare you the winking photos. I look like I got a sharp stick in the eye.

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Not my regular hair-do for those who don’t know me. Mine is usually a little more bouffant. Oh and that’s a hockey stick I’m holding.

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Henry has perfected the art of the cheesy smile. I hope he doesn’t pass it on to his chum who still has a lovely natural smile.

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Yummy pumpkin baby.

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This Raggedy Ann scared the gills off of Henry, since he didn’t recognize his lovely pal underneath.

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They do look like they are up to something, don’t they?

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World’s loveliest cow. Her sister was world’s loveliest chicken.

Happy Halloween, a week later!

Not dead, just wondering when

November 6, 2008

…my Congressman will help out with those extra hours in the day I requested. All things are possible in this new day, so why not that?

Back later with some Halloween photos, though my costume is already completely out-of-date. And I’m completely okay with that.