Saturday, May 31, 2008

Giving-Day 16

I keep finding that I am giving myself permission to be good to myself with this challenge. I am being good to others as well but I am also making the time to take care of myself. Today after a great meal at Kanki, I gave Monkeyface over to my parents and they took him to a bluegrass festival. I can only imagine the fun he's having playing in the sand down by the lake as well as dancing to his favorite music. Not to mention that he gets to hang out with his Papa and I do believe he loves that more than anything else. It was no problem getting him into the car today. He practically flew out there on winged feet, waving by to me as he went. So I got the rest of the day off. I got a pedicure and then went to the coffeeshop to do some reading. I haven't been able to do either of those in quite a while. Afterwards, I picked up some Indian food and then came home to eat dinner with the hubby. Now I'm off to do the dishes so that I can sleep in tomorrow. Can I just tell you that that is the way straight to my heart?

Friday, May 30, 2008

Happy Happy Happy

To my Kiki,

Today marks the beginning of your second year with me. Every day I am amazed by you. You have developed into this fiercely independent little monkey and I have to remind myself over and over again to give you your space b/c you are like me in that respect. You don't mind taking my hand when you need my help but otherwise you want to run free. When you fall, my initial reaction is to scoop you up and kiss you but I know that you will work it out for yourself. I watch you and admire your strength and your kindness. You are known as the "little helper" at school. Always willing to help the other kids learn to say a word, always ready to show them through example, and always helping the teachers clean up.

You are already becoming a little chef in the kitchen. I make a point to bake something with you every weekend and you just dig in with both hands. Sometimes it's to help...most of the time it's to sample.

And you are so fearless. You climb and you lunge and you do things that make me lose my breath but you don't know that you shouldn't be doing it so you embrace the challenge. I envy that about you. Sometimes I wish I didn't know better.

I love being your guide, your teacher, and your mama. You have brought me more joy than I ever thought I would know. I know that this is what I was meant to do.

Giving-Day 15

Today is Monkeyface's 2nd birthday so I took cupcakes to his class. It was great hearing all the kids sing "Happy Happy Happy Monkeyface" instead of "Happy Birthday".

I'm giving my older brother a place to lay his head tonight after a long day. We're all heading out to Kanki tomorrow to celebrate the youngster's birthday and to watch him squeal with delight with the chef plays with fire.

Only one more day of work and I get to be stress free for a week. Beach trips, coffeeshop talk, dining, train rides, and giggles will be shared. I'm so excited I could pop.

Thursday, May 29, 2008

Giving-Day 14

Today was simple. I gave my co-workers a ride to lunch and then I gave my brother the lunch that I was supposed to eat. Someone stole his lunch from the freezer at work so I felt lucky that I had not eaten mine and was able to offer it to him.

Right now I'm enjoying the following:

*This giving challenge
*My boy turns 2 tomorrow
*There is a robin's nest right outside my front door and I've watched the babies go from eggs to little birds over the last week. The mama is used to me now and doesn't fly away each time I come outside.
*Knowledge that I will be off work next week.
*Pepita Crusted Cheddar Jack Southwest Chicken Mac
*Finally booking my trip to Costa Rica
*Watching Monkeyface mock me. He puts a bucket on his arm like I hold my purse and says "Bye!" to me over and over again.

Things I am not enjoying right now:

*Stress eating-It has really gotten out of control
*Lack of exercise due to said stress
*Insomnia due to stress
*Lack of time to clean the house properly. I do not function well with a mess.

Here's hoping I have a good weekend. I'm picking up cupcakes tomorrow to take to the daycare. I can't wait to see Monkeyface's face when I surprise him with them. I also can't wait to see him when he gets home and sees that his daddy has put together a new tricycle for him. We are fortunate enough to have an open floor plan so he will be able to terrorize us as he rides around and around.

Yummy goodness

LUSH is coming to Raleigh. Excuse me while I faint.

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Giving-Day 13

A crisis will be striking tens of thousands of homes in just a few short weeks. Struggling parents will be faced with the question - "How will I feed my child when school is out?"

Nearly 250,000 children in our 34-county service territory receive free and reduced breakfasts and lunches at school. In just a few short weeks, school will be closed for the summer. No school equals no meals.

More families rely on the Food Bank of Central & Eastern NC to help them close this enormous gap and provide meals to their children. But, summertime is one of our most difficult times of the year. Food drive and fund donations decline. Additionally, the lasting effects of the drought on produce donations and rising fuel & food costs this year make things especially challenging.

You've seen the issues of hunger in the news lately. Many are calling this dire situation "the global food crisis": not a shortage in food, but one of soaring prices.

I donated a grocery basket of food. It was only $25 but they can turn that into $200 worth of food. I'm amazed and humbled.

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Man Babies

This site is totally cracking me up! - Dad?

Giving-Day 11 and 12

I was worn out after a long day of Sunday. Dancing and cooking all day. It was great though. It really was. Monday I gave myself the day off. I showered for longer than 5 minutes and buffed, shaved, washed my hair, and just let the water beat down on my aching neck and back. I've really been trying to cut down on the amount of time I spend in the shower but I decided I needed to give myself a break.
My parents came over later in the day and I finally have curtains hung up in the living room. I've only owned these curtains since Monkeyface's birthday last year but I hate to iron and don't even own an ironing board. My mom is an absolute angel for doing that.
I did give my sister-in-law a phone call later in the day so I'm going to count that too. It was tedious but I love her ;)

I meant to go to Goodwill to drop off some items that have been in my car for over a week but I forgot. Luckily I shared my lunch with 2 co-workers so I'm counting that. When I got home tonight I gave myself permission not to cook and just sat back and read a book. I did feed the babe so I didn't neglect anyone in the process. Now I'm going to go to bed earlier than normal and give my body some much needed sleep.

Sunday, May 25, 2008


what was I doing 10 years ago:
Going to travel agency school (or maybe I had just graduated)
Beginning my second year of dating my now husband
Living in a condo with a pool
Making new friends
Driving an old beat up Volvo

what are 5 things on my to-do list for today:
making dinner
buying party invitations
making phone calls
buying books

snacks I enjoy:
tomato basil amish cheese
banana muffins
nekot cookies (or any form of nabs)
Diet Mt Dew
Doritos (so yummy and so evil)
fruit of any variety

things I would do if I were a billionaire:
pay off debt of my entire family and closest friends
give away money like Oprah

places I have lived before:
raleigh, nc
london, england
smithfield, nc

Giving-Day 10

Already? Whew!

This morning I gave Monkeyface dance lessons at our dance party to the Juno soundtrack and then we made Rice Krispie treats.

After his nap, we are going to go pick up some books about Elmo b/c today he has been obsessed with Youtube and Elmo. I suppose I gave up a little of my sanity as well this morning. What's up with kids and Elmo? Elmo has never been in our house. I can count the number of times on two hands that he has actually watched Elmo here (maybe even 1 hand), yet he loves Elmo. How many more times can I say Elmo in this paragraph? Elmo.

Saturday, May 24, 2008

Giving-Day 9

Today I sent out an email to a friend of mine that I haven't spoken to in months. I do realize that it isn't much, but I put it out there.

Does giving in the bedroom count? I think it should ;)

Friday, May 23, 2008

Giving-Day 8 update

This is really simple, but it still counts. I registered my Food Lion MVP card to donate money each time I shop there to Project Enlightenment. There are a variety of programs to choose from and it took less than 10 minutes.

Giving-Day 8

Today I donated money to help theMother & Child Health Clinic in Rural Nepal. This project supports one year's operating expenses for the Karing for Kids Mother and Child Health Clinic, serving 7,000 people in the rural mountain communities of Rasuwa district, Nepal. I was able to give 5 days' operating costs for the Clinic OR a year's worth of care for 12 women and children. I'm shocked that such a small amount of money can give an entire year of care to 12 women. How is that possible when I spend $15 co-pay just to have my child go to the pediatrician once here? It makes me wonder what we are doing wrong here.

I donated this in honor of someone close to my heart for a place they hold close to theirs.

Thursday, May 22, 2008

Giving-Day 7

Today I brought breakfast in for the co-workers. It was really simple, I just pulled through the drive-thru and spent $7. Definitely worth it.
Later I put a note with pics of Monkeyface into the mail for my grandma. I actually talked to her for a while last night which was fun. She keeps reminding me over and over to cherish each moment b/c they don't last and having a child is a wonderful thing. She keeps telling me that they are a pure joy and a light. I can actually hear her swooning. I think my grandma and I finally agree on something.

Giving gives back

When I started my 29 day giving challenge I expected nothing in return. So far I've been given back several phone calls and now coupons for something I'd buy anyway.

Greetings MamaFeelgood,

Thank you for your interest in Mrs. Meyer’s Clean Day and for your very kind words. We are pleased to hear that you are enjoying our Basil Counter-Top Spray. For being such a loyal customer, I would love to send you a few manufacturers’ coupons that you can either use at your local Mrs. Meyer’s Clean Day retailer or on our website. If you are interested, please let me know if I can mail them at the address you provided with your signature and I will be happy to mail them out to you promptly. I hope to hear from you soon! Thank you.

With Clean and Kind Regards,

Jennifer Martinez

Customer Service Manager

Karma feels good sometimes!

Wednesday, May 21, 2008


I've found myself strangely obsessed with banana muffins this week. I have posted the recipe here, I have sent it to a few people to ensure that they know to make them, and I've told anyone with a breath within 10 feet of me about these muffins. My kid and I have shared one every day. We both have made delightful yummy sounds as we munch away on them. It's been the perfect little combo for us though. I like the top of the muffins and he actually likes eating the muffin part. What is wrong with me? What's going on in my world that I've become obsessed with muffins and not politics, or potty training, or enjoying my day for what it was?

Seriously though...those are some mighty good muffins.

Giving-Day 6

Well today was quite the giving day. I keep thinking that I will save things so that I won't run out of ideas, but I can't. I'm just going with the flow and seeing where it takes me. Today I gave some email love, some post love, and I actually took the time to write a nice letter to the makers of Mrs. Meyers. I figured that I enjoyed positive feedback for a job well done so I should pass on the same. I'm already working on tomorrow's giving.

Monkeyface is sick with another ear infection and sinus problems. I got about 3 hours of sleep last night after working a few hard days with no lunch break. Work has been incredibly difficult for almost 2 weeks now as half of my co-workers have been out of the office in Costa Rica or Belize. I'm looking so forward to the Memorial Day Holiday and the forthcoming arrival of the best conversationalist I've ever had the pleasure of knowing. I need a rest.

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Giving-Day 5

I wrote a little note to be sent out today but I forgot to stick it in the mail so I figure that I have something set for giving tomorrow. So that meant that when I got home I had to find something to give. I had a really hard day and a late lunch so I had already decided that we would eat leftovers. However, when I got home I jumped in and started cooking so that I could give my little family a hot meal. So there we go. I totally put the needs of someone else before my own. That is a BIG deal. I know, I know, I'm a mom and I should always be thinking about others but sometimes I want to be selfish. I chose not to be today.
I'm really liking this challenge b/c it has made me get off my behind and do things that I would not normally do. It's also great for making me think of someone other than myself and to give selflessly just because I can. I think that when I'm done with this 29 days then I will go ahead and do another 29 just because it feels so good.

Monday, May 19, 2008

Giving-Day 4

Woo hoo! It's just after noon and I've already given today. Package is in the mail for a great friend of mine. I found the perfect little trinket for her this weekend at the art fair and immediately bought it without any hesitation. This challenge actually motivated me to send it out quicker than normal.

Now to get the package together that I've had at home since before Christmas...

Sunday, May 18, 2008

Giving-Day 3

Today I took Monkeyface for a walk around the neighborhood. It was the first time we actually walked around together instead of me either pushing him in the stroller or pulling him in the wagon. I don't know why I waited so long except to say that I'm so tired after a long day at work and even more tired on the weekend. Once again this challenge made me get up and do something.

Picture proof:

I also gave another friend a call that I had not talked to in a few months. He was busy out at the Joshua Tree festival so we'll catch up really soon. However, it still felt good to let him know that I was thinking of him.


Technically that was yesterday but I was so beat after a busy day that I couldn't bring myself to post. Yesterday I gave my son a great day (which I don't think I would have done had I not been doing this challenge), I gave a friend lunch, I gave out some recipes, and then I gave a couple of people a call.

Normally I would have wanted to go to Artsplosure but would have never made the effort b/c I enjoy relaxing on Saturdays. I'm glad I went.

We started the day at the coffeeshop:

Where we played a little banjo:

Then we went to Artsplosure and discovered windchimes:

From there we moved on to bubble making:

(they should have had more of these set up)

Showing off the homemade terrarium seconds before he dropped it:

Mommy and Monkey:

Then he played in the sand with K:

After a long walk through all the arts & crafts, we stopped for lunch:

And we finished up the day with an ice cream treat:

I'm very glad I took this challenge or else I would have missed out on a really good day.


I made these muffins this morning and they were delicious. I got them from The Motherload. I suggest making them right now.

Banana Crumb Muffins
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 t baking soda
1 t baking powder
1/2 t salt
3 bananas, mashed
3/4 cups white sugar
1 eggs, lightly beaten
1/3 cup butter, melted
1/2 cup packed brown sugar
1/8 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 t ground cinnamon
1 T butter

Preheat oven to 375. Lightly grease ten muffin cups or line with muffin papers. In a large bowl, mix together flour, baking soda, baking powder, and salt. In another bowl, beat together bananas, sugar, egg and melted butter. Stir the banana mixture into the flour mixture just until moistened. Spoon batter into prepared muffin cups. In a small bowl, mix together brown sugar, flour, and cinnamon. Cut the butter until mixture resembles coarse cornmeal. Sprinkle topping over muffins. Bake in preheated oven for eighteen to twenty minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into center of muffins comes out clean.

Friday, May 16, 2008

Giving-Day 1

I was racking my brain tonight trying to think of something that I gave today. I came up with this. Today I gave knowledge. I taught Monkeyface how to splash in a puddle. It was the first time he was allowed to play in the rain and he took to it like a fish to water. He ran, he splashed, he screamed, and he laughed. I love the laughing. I try to make him laugh every day and it's not hard to do. I wanted to take a picture but my camera is currently not working. I really hope I can fix it this weekend b/c I feel so lost w/o it.

sinning never felt so god

Seriously contemplating whether or not Bojangle's is a sin. It breaks every diet I'm on but it tastes so good.


I have joined the 29 day giving challenge. I like that I have set the intention to give for this time period. I will try my best to blog about it every day for the next 29 days but I am a forgetful person. I will not however, forget to give. If you want to join, I have put the link up on my blog over on the right.

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

Making Music

I walked in tonight to find the living room littered with musical instruments. There's a drum, a keyboard, a "microphone", and now a harmonica. The harmonica just came in the mail today. It took Monkeyface a few tries to figure out how it worked but once he did, he loved it. I showed him how to play but as soon as he learned, he took it to his daddy to try out. Of course...they are best friends forever!

Friday, May 9, 2008

I want to remember...

cookie=organic Paul Newman lowfat fig newtons
Singing the word "Pants" while getting dressed in the morning
being called a "little helper" by his teacher
Singing the word "hot dogs" at the top of his lungs at the grocery store this week
Pausing and saying "cheese" every time I pull out the camera
devouring a cone full of mint chocolate chip ice cream and making a mohawk with the mess on his hands
Drawing on his hands and feet when I introduced him to markers this week
licking a lobster
Being taught how to crush heads with his thumb and forefinger
making Dr. No Personality laugh yesterday while singing "pants"

I swear that having a kid is one of the best things that ever happened to me. It amuses me to no end what he finds funny. It doesn't hurt that he thinks I am brilliant.

Wednesday, May 7, 2008

Flipping and Flopping

Why am I so obsessed with flip flops? I'm telling you that I could never work a job where I couldn't wear them to work. Technically I'm not supposed to but I just keep my mouth shut and pretend they are invisible.
My latest purchase last night is above and I'm so in love with them. I designed my outfit today to match. I just realized that I have on the same outfit that I wore home from the hospital after I had Eli two years ago!! The crotch is hanging half way down my thigh, but still I wear them for comfort. What Not to Wear needs me.

Monday, May 5, 2008


This weekend I was caught singing.

I make musical notes come to life.