Current state of the living room:
current state of the Dearest, looking at the living room:
Poor guy....he has been super patient with me in the QUEST FOR THE PERFECT PAINT COLOR...
believe it or not, I might have found it!
At first it looked too dark and 'putty-like' when I painted the swatch on the wall, but it's been a couple of days and now it's growing on me. The color changes a bit with sunlight to a softer gray-brown, and at night it lightens to a warm gray.
The Dearest has given his approval, too, so the maybe I can stop buying sample jars of color. They are multiplying in my garage like rabbits. I thought I only had five or so but yesterday I opened a cabinet and a whole bunch of them were hiding in there. Yikes!
"Mom is great! Gives us chocolate cake!"
Well, it wasn't actually chocolate cake, but it WAS cake for breakfast. We had our first annual school carnival on Friday and Monkey Boy won a cake in the cakewalk. There were dozens of beautiful homemade cakes and which one did he pick? The pink one with frosting so yellow that someone asked me if it was mustard! It didn't seem to matter to the small men- they asked if they could eat it for breakfast this morning so I said Yes.
That's what happens when momma walks a 5k, goes out to dinner with friends and wakes up at 8am on Sunday with no idea what to make for breakfast!
“When you realize there is nothing lacking, the whole world belongs to you.” -Lao Tzu
I used to post every Thursday with a list of things I was loving that week. It was a good opportunity to stop and think about the many blessings I had in my life. I don't know why, but I stopped my 'love thursday' posts sometime back. However, I've recently decided to re-start these posts as a type of gratitude practice:
In that vein...
This week I am loving:
-staying up WAAAAAY too late on a weeknight with amazing friends...eating, laughing, and giggling
-how Little Man will randomly come up to me during the day and say, "Momma, you're the BEST"
-finding and catching 27 caterpillars with the small men
-hearing the Dearest read "Harry Potter" to the small men every night before bed
-the grounding and release of my yoga practice
-Monkey Boy's new tucking-in sequence before bedtime: I kiss his eyes, forehead, nose, cheeks, ears, and chin, then he kisses mine (has to be in that order!), and then he gives me a big 'squeezy' hug
-trying new yoga classes with friends
-homemade sweet tea over ice
-getting the chance to have dinner and catch-up with my sis and BIL
What are you loving this week?
This week is Spring Break for the kids, so we took our first family camping trip of the year at Anza Borrega Desert State Park. Anza Borrega is located inland and north of San Diego, about a 2.5 hour drive from our home in the OC. This time of year, it's not too hot (about 80F during the day), and there are usually a lot of wildflowers blooming. We left late Sunday morning and arrived at the campground at the same time as our friends (we camped with three other families).
The sunrise as seen from our campsite the next morning:
And of course there were TONS of rocks to climb up, over, and on! The kids were in heaven! Is there anything better than a big rock to climb and sticks to carry??? Not if you're a kid!
We eventually found a wash and started walking along the sandy bottom, which was covered with these beautiful purple flowers:
I had to tell Monkey Boy, "Put your hat on!" about 2600x times:
Little Man was quite the explorer with his binoculars and backpack:
The kids did great- it was a pretty long hike, especially for the littler ones - we went about two miles or so in our search for lizards and chuckwallas.
And with all the beautiful scenery and silence, I couldn't resist a little yoga-
It was a great trip with plenty of dirt, smores, bug-catching and hiking....all the fun stuff about camping! And look at the gorgeous fields we saw on the way home:
So I was hanging out with my new boyfriend, Craig, the other day and found this adorable vintage chair for only $10:
Aside from the fact that the cane seat was busted out, there was absolutely nothing wrong with it! I even got a whole complementary layer of dust, spiderwbes and a few dead daddy-longlegs for my $10. The seller said this chair has been in her family for many years- owned by her Granny, mom and then passed on to her. She guessed it was probably at least sixty years old.
Look at this amazingly detailed wood work on the back and top...
This morning I gave the chair a quick dusting (bye-bye mummified daddy-longlegs) and started pulling out the left over caning:
Check out my awesome work bench- I know Bob Vila would love to own one like this.
After 30 minutes of clipping and pulling and tugging, all the caning was gone and the chair was ready for a new seat. I went to the local Lowes and asked the guy in the wood section what type of plywood I should use: 1/2 inch or 1/4 inch. He looked me up and down and asked, "So are a lot of BIG people going to be sitting in this chair?"
I explained that the chair was vintage, so a bit smaller than modern chairs, and that it wouldn't be used for seating very much...he laughed and said the 1/4 inch plywood would be fine. Then we had a 20 minute conversation about how vintage furniture often seems much smaller than new stuff and how all our grannies must have been tiny little things....Can I just say that I *heart* my local Lowes people? They are always super helpful and willing to spend lots of time answering my crazy questions!
So the next step is to cut out and upholster the chair seat. Here is the combination that I'm thinking of- the paint will go on the chair frame and the fabric will go on the seat:
Valentine's Day = lots of cooking for me...check out these cute heart lollipops I made for the boys to give out:
I don't recall where I saw the idea, but it's basically two mini candy canes heated in a 350F oven till they *just* soften. Poke the lollipop stick into the base and use your fingers to very gently mold the stick in place. Let cool briefly, then fill with edible candy melts. Easy peasy!
We used bookmarks from Living Locurto as tags, though I changed the pink bookmarks to blue per Monkey Boy's request (because boys can't give out pink bookmarks, dontcha know!).
For our Valentine's Day Dinner we decided to eat in. It's just too much trouble to go out and fight the crowds. So I made filet mignon + seared sea scallops served with rice and mushrooms/zukes tossed with butter and garlic. Super yum!
What did we have for dessert? Well check out my new kitchen gadget: a mini donut maker!
This thing makes THE.CUTEST.DONUTS.EVAH. I used a recipe I found online and whipped up 20 donuts in about 20 minutes. A simple sugar glaze was the vehicle for lots of sprinkles...
Aren't they the most twee things?!? I'm dying to try some chocolate ones...or maybe plain with chocolate ganache....or chocolate with powdered sugar...Oh dear, I might have to buy some elastic waist pants!
The small men have been itching to try out the fishing rods they got for Christmas so we took them to the beach yesterday for some surf-fishing. The weather was beautiful, and it didn't take long before Little Man reeled in this sand perch:
We don't eat the fish so we just throw them back, but the boys really enjoyed using their new rods and reels. Here is Monkey Boy doing his best to catch something (he never did, but he didn't seem to care!). MB has even started getting the hang of casting on his own- though it's still much safer to stand FAR FAR away when he's casting.
Little Man and the Dearest:
It was getting pretty chilly by the time we left, but a good time was had by all. Rain is expected later this week so I'm glad we took the time to head down to the beach and enjoy the sun while we could!