Saturday, April 30, 2011

Just Another Saturday Morning.. Dirt and Beds and Dandelions, Oh My!

We're linking up with our favorite Loves, Kate and Eme, for another sneak into our Saturday morning.  We're tending to the beds today! Unfortunately, being that they're bare nekkid, our garden is going to require a lot more than the usual seasonal TLC. How's this for a start?

 The husband planted these tulip bulbs back in late winter..
Well, friends we're off to Disney this morning to pick out some new blooms! Have a great weekend, Loyals! Don't forget to head on over to Loves of Life to link up and share your Saturday Morning Scene!
Saturday Morning Scene

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Friday, April 29, 2011

Things I've Left Behind... Shopping Cart Edition.

Most days Some days, I'm not quite sure my head is screwed on tight enough. Yesterday happened to be one of those days and I only realized it when, shortly before dinner time, I opened the fridge and went looking for the rotisserie chicken that I had picked up from the grocer only a mere two hours earlier.
And it was no where to be found.
How can one lose a rotisserie chicken, you ask? Easy. They leave it behind on the bottom of the shopping cart. To join the myriad of other food and paper items left behind on shopping carts worldwide. I would imagine these items end up somewhere akin to The Land of Misfit Toys a la Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer, but alas, I'm more certain that they end up back in the store or worse, a smarter shopping patron's home. One who doesn't leave behind rotisserie chickens.
Sadly, this wasn't the first time this has happened and I can bet you Sullivan that it won't be the last time either. Let's quickly review some of the other items I've recently left for dead left behind on that godforsaken bottom rung of the shopping cart:
  • shampoo and conditioner
  • paper towels
  • not one but two fridge packs of Fresca
  • a loaf of French bread
  • laundry detergent
  • a box of garbage bags
  • a case of water
One would think, perhaps, that I would wisen up and stop putting things on that ridiculous bottom rung, however that's obviously not the case. Hopefully somebody out there is enjoying what should have been last night's dinner chicken.
Happy Friday, Loyals.
Have a fabulous weekend!

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Thursday, April 28, 2011

Finger Lickin' Good! Finger Foods for Baby.

I've gotten a few emails lately asking if I've started C on any finger foods lately. If so, what have we done? The answer is a resounding yes! Typically, Carter eats two "finger-food" snack-type meals per day. Typically, I'll give him some sliced banana cubes with his yogurt at 11am and then later in the day he'll have a "snack" that consists of a couple of sweet potato sticks and some smashed blueberries. In the beginning, "finger foods" were introduced mainly so that Carter could work on fine motor skills but now that he's growing hungrier and more independent, I'll be introducing finger foods in greater quantity.
When looking for new ideas, I always turn to I cannot say enough about this website. It's such an easy, indispensable resource when it comes to feeding! Here are a few of their brilliant suggestions when it comes to delicious finger foods for baby!
I'll admit, I'm pretty darn excited about dusting tofu in a little cheerio dust. Carter, however, may have other ideas!

Happy One-Day-Closer-To-Friday, Loyals!

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Wednesday, April 27, 2011

A Little Bit More For Your Wee One Wednesday...

Just when you thought that The M's, the family behind I Love You More Than Carrots, was a mere figment of your imagination...

We really do exist! Myself, The Husband, Baby C and the infamous Sheepie.

And well, if that's just not the cutest picture you've ever seen in the whole wide world, then I don't know what you're smokin'! Happy Wednesday, Loyals!


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Tuesday, April 26, 2011

On Debt, Wishful Thinking and Travel.

We're in it.

By varying degrees, it's not much, but we're in it nonetheless. We have a mortgage, we owe money on "Delilah" and both The Husband and I didn't make it out of Villanova scott-free.

Before I proceed further, whether with this post or digging myself into a ditch, remember this: I'm married to Mr. Financial. We live our lives based on Budgets and Spreadsheets. So much so, that it's safe to say The Husband may or may not have typed up The Proposal in true business proposal form before he popped the question. Pun intended.

It goes without saying that neither one of us is careless or frivolous when it comes to money. Sure, I'm more of a Spender and Husband, the Saver, but that is neither here nor there. We both work(ed) hard to earn our money, often putting in 12+ hour days whether in the hospital or in Corporate America and saved when saving was possible. There was even a stretch of time when I worked both nightshift and overtime just to stash away the differential as we saved for our wedding.

Saving was and is important to us.

.... Are you waiting for the other shoe to drop?

Here's where it gets gritty. I'm do-er. And a see-er. And a "life is short, let's see the world"-er. And not put any of that seeing and doing off so that we can pay off our student loans. Life is short and all that jazz. 

I know, I know. I'm quite sure that there are plenty of you out there that can both pay off your student loans AND see the world and this is me taking off my proverbial hat towards you.  However, I have zero patience when it comes to this sort of stuff and I had a lot of world-seeing and doing to be done before Carter came along.

Now, dontchya all go thinking that we're up to eyeballs in debt and that we forego paying important bills so that we can take vacations. And please, that is NOT the takeaway message of this post. Remember, I'm married to Mr. Financial and that's basically blasphemy in his book. 

Here, let me try this angle.

Do you know what a DINK is? No? It was The Husband and me approximately 387 days ago. Dual Income, No Kids. For us? It was amazing. Here's why:

{Looking back, I could have alternately sub-titled this portion of today's post, "The Many Hair Styles and Colors of AP."}

Pictured: Hawaii, Turks and Caicos, Ocean City, Bahamas, Chicago, Martha's Vineyard, Marco Island.
Not Pictured: California, more Ocean City, West Palm Beach, Dallas.

Do ya catch my drift?

The Husband and I were married for three {income-full and child-less} years before we started our family. Sure, we put money towards our debts. We even and often paid more than the monthly requirement. Although, I'll be the first to admit we certainly did not expend our resources to make sure our debts were paid off.

And the truth is? I'm glad we did.

I guess that's the point of this post. I'm kind of happy we're not debt free. There, I said it. Go ahead and pick your chin up from the floor. I'm happy we saw those places and did those things. Go ahead, stone me.

However, before you throw sticks and rocks...

Did you happen to notice that the bulk of our travel happened before 2010? Before the mortgage and the car payment and the baby? Go ahead. Go back and look again. It was all pre-Real Life. Between the years of 2007 and 2009. And it was glorious.

So what happened in 2010, you ask? Oh, that's right. I got knocked up, bought a house and decided to become a SAHM. Whew.

I think it goes without saying that we've been bit by the travel bug yet again and have been pouring over Budgets and Spreadsheets as if they're going out of style. With my new SAHM-hat, we knew there would be sacrifices to be made and I was all set to give up JCrew, Mr. Yurman and weekly Happy Hours at our favorite wine bar.

I wasn't prepared, however, to quit traveling cold turkey. To quit laying on warm sandy beaches, sipping umbrella drinks with The Husband. Immersing ourselves in cultures and tastes we've only read about time and again in travel magazines.

You're right.  Maybe I am telling you to make room for vacation. Skim a little off the top. And if you don't have kids? Wait, do I even have readers without kids? Are you still out there?

Go. Get out. Travel. Because I'll be the first to tell you, life is so much different after baby. See the world. Give in to the travel bug. And come back to thank me later.
Happy Tuesday, Loyals.


Monday, April 25, 2011

Easter Bunny Hop-Prints - How To!

Last week, I mentioned here about how, when growing up, I would awaken to powder bunny prints scattered throughout the house on Easter morning. It was a sure sign that The Bunny has visited our house and left behind a surprise treat or two! After 26 years, the secret is finally out. Up until this weekend, I had zero idea how my parents The Easter Bunny left his prints behind.
What you'll need:
1. Baby Powder
2. Scissors
3. Construction paper, oak tag or a shoebox lid. Word on the street is that the construction paper works best, as it's the easiest to cut through.
What you do:
1. Using a large wooden spoon, trace out your Bunny print. If you're super talented, go ahead and free-hand. Add three toes.
2. Carefully cut out print.
3. Dump a few handfuls of powder right inside your front door. Obviously this is the "trap" that The Bunny must hop through in order to pick up the powder for his prints. Duh!
4. Get creative and stencil The EB's path throughout your house by laying down the constrcution paper and lightly tapping the baby powder to fill in the stencil.
I can remember a few solid years when the Bunny would enter our house, hop through the entryway, halfway up the stairs, turn around and continue on his jaunt throughout the kitchen, dining room and finally landing in the living room where the tracks would stop right in front of our baskets. 
Word to the wise? It's quite a mess. If you know this beforehand, you won't be as shocked as I was to find baby powder quickly scattered throughout the entire house. Especially when a certain Sheepie ran through the "trap" at the front door. 
But it's oh so damn cute. Needless to say, this will be a family tradition that I'm ridiculously excited to continue throughout C's childhood!

The M's had a fabulous time celebrating C's First Easter with Gammie and Poppy in New Jersey. As you're reading this, we've piled the family back into the car and are headed back on our way to Home Sweet, Maryland. Why is it that weekends at home are never long enough? GammieandPoppyweloveyouandmissyoualready!
We hope you all had a wonderful weekend! Happy Monday!

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Thursday, April 21, 2011

Well, Since My Very First Mother's Day Is Coming Up...

I've been working with Carter on saying a couple of new words. Sure he has "Mama" and "Baba" and "Mmm Mmm's" down pat. However, with this momentous occasion right around the corner, I thought it might be time to expand his repertoire.

The first set of new words? "Kate Spade."

Isn't she beautiful? I've been lusting over this new Kindle case for a while now and I just couldn't think of a better time for it to grace the face of my Kindle2. Perhaps Carter and The Husband will also give me a few free hours here and there to actually read a book, something I haven't done since before Carter was born. I know. Shameful, really.

The other set of new words we've been working on?
"Canon 50mm/1.4"

Sure, this one's a bit harder, as I've had to teach Carter his numbers, but I really think he's catching on. If he happens to slip and say 1.8 instead of 1.4, I would be just as happy, no doubt! This will be the third lens to add to my collection and the thought of it alone makes me a little weak in the knees!

And of course, what kind of wishful thinking post would this be, if I didn't include this beauty? We all know Carter needs an iPad2. Heck, with all the roadtrips we take up North to Hometown, New Jersey, this would make for the perfect roadtrip companion, no? I'm fairly certain I heard Carter say, "Mama needs an iPad2" just last night...

So, there you have it Husband, Loyals! You know, just in case you were at a loss when it came to some gift ideas for everyone's Carter's favorite Mama!

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Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Because Few Things Are Cuter Than C In Moccasins: Wee One Wednesday

We can thank my Mama, Gammie, for Carter's fine choice of footwear for today's Wee One Wednesday. We scooped up these baby moc's from one of our absolute favorite places to shop, hanna andersson. Yes, it's Swedish and yes, it's stinking adorable. It's true. Sometimes, I like to dress C as if he's a tiny Swedish hippie baby. No lie.

Speaking of Gammie, we'll be leaving the sweet state of Maryland behind today as we head North to Hometown, New Jersey to wait for the Easter Bunny to visit Carter! Growing up, I would always leave carrots out for The Bunny the night before Easter and wake up to powder bunny prints leading from the entryway of our home clear through the house to where our baskets lie. I have a funny feeling those powder prints will be making their first appearance in many, many years this year! I can't wait!

Don't fret, ILYMTC blogging to continue from the comforts of Gammie and Poppy's place! Happy Wednesday, Loyals!

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Tuesday, April 19, 2011

She's Baaaaaaaack! - Mama's Sweet Summer Swag

This post could alternately be titled, "And It Feels SO Good."
It's true, I've been hemming and hawing about having to shop from the ground up for a new Spring/Summer wardrobe for weeks now. The thought alone would have me breaking out into a cold sweat, however, once I got to shopping, it was as if I had been transported back in time. Back to a time when I would shop with reckless abandon. And let me tell you, sweet friends. A monster has been created.
The good news? After giving The Husband a fashion show of my new, sweet swag over the weekend, I'm fairly certain his jaw-on-the-floor look garnered the seal of approval I was so desperately seeking.
His wife is finally back and better than ever! I'm pretty sure he missed her about as much as I have!

Here's a glimpse at some of the items I've managed to accrue in the last 14 days. Not pictured are a few tunic-style tops that I haven't been able to find images of online. Most of these items were purchased via the Outlet Store, however a handful of them came from the sale racks of "the real JCrew," as I like to call it.

Things I've learned?

1. I have an unhealthy addiction to things both navy and striped.

2. I have purchased entirely too many tops and must reserve whatever "wifely stipend" (hey, remember those days?)* I have left for both bathing suits and shorts.

Keep in mind I've also purchased a pair of City Fit Navy capri pants as well as a pair in the dark khaki color. I also scooped up a FABULOUS pair of white denim jeans from Banana.

I know, I know. Try and stop me now!

All images via JCrew.


Coastline Stripe Pullover - purchased in Navy.
Looks comfy and classic and all kinds of nautical
paired with my dark khaki capris.

Stripe Button Back tee - purchased in Neon Pink As shown
Look fab paired with both white jeans and my navy capris!

Lace Tissue Tee - purchased in Buff as shown

Linen Henley Tank - purchased in Mineral Green as shown
Seriously, I cannot wait to wear the white jeans. They
just SCREAM summer and I'm loving
pairing delicious pastels with them!

Saturdays Square Type T
(Looks absolutely darling half-tucked with white jeans!)

Perfect Shirt in Neon Azalea - As shown.

Ribbon Cami - purchased in Alabaster as shown.

While trying on my new scores, I couldn't help but think how amazing it felt to finally get out of the new-stay-at-home-mom funk. You know the funk I'm takling about. I'd be lying if I told you that I haven't been wearing yoga pants and tank tops or some sort of workout-type gear every day for the last 8 months. It's forgiving, it's mostly black and it's been versatile for errand-running and baby-raising. Sure there were a few occasions for which I'd throw on a pair of jeans, but truly? I wouldn't be surprised if my workout comfies grew a set of legs and walked off, I've been wearing them so much.

So, the moral of the story? I'm learning to embrace my new mom-hips. I've said farewell to my closet full of JCrew's 2's and 4's and am slowly replacing them with confidence-boosting 6's. I too often lose sight of how I came about these new mom-hips and I'm getting much better at smacking myself upside the head and reminding myself that I have a GORGEOUS, healthy and active blue-eyed babe to thank for them.

And when I look at it that way, friends? These hips are damn worth it!

*For those of you that are longtime readers of ILYMTC, we're talking going back at least 1-2 years, you're familiar with the time in my life when The Husband would literally give me a bi-weekly allowance for all things wifely. We're talking shopping, manicures, hair appointments, etc. What a dream! Those days are long gone now, at least for a little while, but it's always nice to reminisce!


Monday, April 18, 2011

Disneyland. And Not The One You're Thinking About Right Now.

Over the weekend, while on a quest for a new dining set for our outdoor living space, The Husband, The Baby and myself piled into the car and headed here:

As The Husband was unbuckling The Baby from his carseat, I overheard him ask, "Are you ready to go to Disneyland, Big Man? And I couldn't help but laugh out loud for the following two reasons:

1. Home Depot really is the grown man's Disneyland. Afterall, there are rides to ride on (tractors, ladders, those flatbed carts for large ticket items), things to play with (tools, tools and more tools) as well as snacks to munch on (hello, hot dog stand) all without the hassle of waiting in ridiculous lines. Oh and did I mention there's no park fee required to visit? If I were to ask The Husband right now, he'd probably say that Home Depot is even better than Disneyland.

2. How freaking funny would it be if we raised Carter to think that the place with the orange letters really IS Disneyland? He'd be starting off kindergarten telling all the kids, "I go to Disneyland EVERY weekend!" That alone just cracks me up and makes me actually contemplate misleading the poor little guy. Okay, fine. We wouldn't really do that to him, but you have to admit, it's pretty darn hilarious.

Oh, and for those of you who are wondering whether or not we found a new dining set, we did! And a new shovel, some patch seed, a little weed killer, a new filter for... something, not to mention a ceiling fan for The Baby's room and some brand spankin' new shelves. Maybe I'll even get around to posting a "nursery reveal!" You know, before his 1st birthday. Don't get your hopes up.

And just for kicks, here's a picture of our brand new dining set and the pretty little outdoor rug I found to compliment it. Pictures are courtesy of Home Depot.

Happy Monday, Loyals!


Friday, April 15, 2011

Mother Nature, How Can You Disappoint This Face?

Here in the M Household, we're hoping this gorgeous weather decides to stick, although tomorrow's forecast isn't looking TOO promising. Mother Nature had better watch her back. Let's just say a cabin-fevered 8.5 month old is certainly no force to reckon with!

Happy Friday, Loyals!
Have a great weekend!

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