Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Babysitting Bobo

I'm babysitting Bodhi today, since my mom is sick. He's been an angel, but the combination of these two rugrats and my 3am bedtime last night due to installing a closet system makes me soooo sleepy...Calgon, Calgon, take me away...

Sunday, March 28, 2010

Ming Cabinet

For our honeymoon back in 2006, Darren and I drove down the California coast. We went from Monterey/Carmel through Big Sur, all the way to Santa Barbara. Before we flew home, we spent one day exploring San Francisco. One store I discovered was Big Pagoda, a purveyor of contemporary asian-inspired furniture, right outside the gate to Chinatown. The furniture was unlike any I'd ever seen...asian, but not too ornate or lacquered or garish. It was simple, well-crafted and elegant. Alas, the price tags were way out of my budget.

Ming Cabinet, from $1800 to $500

Well, the other day, I checked in on their website and discovered that they were going out of business! I browsed around and found an armoire that I loved and did a double-take when I saw the discounted price. It was 75% off! I've been corresponding with the owner and today, the cabinet is mine! Since Darren insists on keeping a television in the master bedroom, this is going to corral all his peripherals and maybe some bed linens too. I can't wait to show everyone the finished room once it's all redecorated!

Friday, March 26, 2010


It's amazing the damage ONE cookie can do.

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Rikshaw Design

The baby's not here yet, and I'm already thinking about how to dress her. I am in love with these indian block print kurtas and bloomers from Rikshaw Design. I definitely dressed Sophie in a more classic style, but now I'm thinking maybe my next one will be a boho baby...

all images via Rikshaw Design

Saturday, March 20, 2010

Zoo Day (First Day of Spring)

Darren and Sophie looking at the tiger.

When I realized that this weekend's forecast was to be in the 70s and sunny, I immediately decided that our family would visit the National Zoo on Saturday. This was actually Sophie's third trip to a zoo, but she seemed to appreciate it the most this time around. After reading Good Night Gorilla about a hundred times, she was all ready to see the zoo animals in person. We had a great view of the gorillas, elephants, tigers and lions. They were the highlights of her zoo trip, and a great start to the new season.

Sophie, Bodhi, and their dads in the Reptile House. Darren is hoping that the snake will miraculously wave back.

Snack break

My sister's not fat, she's preggers and almost due!

Sophie had chocolate milk for the first time at Elevation Burger afterwards. It was a hit.

She gets her sweet tooth from her dad. That's an orange creamsicle shake he's having. It was delish.

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Personalized Plates

image via OhDeeDoh

I really shouldn't post about these plates because every kid I know is going to end up getting one of these for his or her birthday and all their moms read this blog! I absolutely love these food plates which you can customize to look like the lucky boy or girl. Eating is a struggle for many toddlers anyway, so anything to make the meal more fun is alright with me.

Master Closet Reorganization

I finally achieved my first major New Year's resolution...reorganizing our master bedroom closet. Darren and I have to move things out of the home office to convert it into a bedroom for the new baby, so we're consolidating two bedroom closets into one. This was major work, as it entailed existing closet demo, designing/building an IKEA Pax wardrobe system, and majorly editing our clothes (a process which was very overdue). I'm finally done and I absolutely love the results!

The final result. I'm going to hang a lightweight, tall mirror at the back wall.

Before: Darren's side of the closet

After: Darren's side

Before: Mily's side

After: Mily's side

My favorite feature: a jewelry tray. No more tangled necklaces!

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

St. Patrick's Day

Happy St. Patrick's Day to all the Irish and Irish-at-heart!

Here's my little leprechaun posing in her green outfit for school (I can't be the only person who sends her kid to bed in school clothes, can I?).

Friday, March 12, 2010


This recent blog post about Genetically Modified Organisms is really disturbing to me, especially since I love corn and all corn-products....who'd have thought that I was eating something by the made by the same people who brought us Agent Orange? Yikes...

On a more light-hearted note....would this be taking my love of corn too far?

Wow, she looks so comfortable.

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Nursery School Gourmets

I read a really interesting article in Time Magazine recently about Parisian nursery school lunches. The French really care about the quality of food that their children eat, and they believe it's something that should be taught from a very young age. For instance, french preschoolers learn very early that they'll only be fed at the table. Secondly, they take their time during eating...often being served a leisurely 5-course meal consisting of salad, cheese, plenty of organic fruits, and an adult-style entree.

This article really hit a nerve with me. I'm not claiming to be the world's healthiest eater, but I would never feed Sophie 90% of the food that she's served at school. Her menu today consisted of waffles & maple syrup, a brownie, chicken nuggets and fries....in other words: junk. The thing is, it seems like most parents I speak to feed their children things like this on a daily basis. It seems pervasive in American culture that parents feed their families the fastest, cheapest, most processed food possible. And I truly believe that this diet has contributed to our poor health and skyrocketing healthcare costs.

I'm not all about low-fat, diet stuff. There are many cultures out there that eat high-fat diets in which people are thinner than Americans. I'm more concerned about sugar (especially the fake kind) and the amount of processing that goes into the food. I wish that more people wanted to feed their kids high-quality, real food.

Why do kids have to eat macaroni & cheese, or cereal that contains ultra-violet marshmallows? Why do parents have to make separate meals for themselves and their children? These questions trouble me when I speak to other parents, but I keep my mouth shut for the most part. Since this is my blog, I'm on a soapbox here (I know). And I've even changed how we eat at home since reading this article. We all eat at the table (with no TV) every night now. We avoid high fructose corn syrup or other unnatural sweeteners (even aspartame) as much as possible. We only eat 100% grass-fed beef at home. But we still have a lot to learn about eating from the French.

Etsy Goody: Urban Baby Bonnet

So, I'm having a little girl in July. And it's gonna be sunny and hot. How do I protect her little head from the harsh sun? I like the idea of these bonnets, by The Urban Baby Bonnet Project. They're not cheap, but they'll do the trick. The patterns aren't too frou-frou, considering it's a bonnet, and the chin strap will keep her hat in place. Check out more designs here.

Are these models cute, or what?

Saturday, March 6, 2010

Clemyjontri Park

Today was the most perfect day we've had in a long time. It was incredibly sunny and beautiful outside, and although the temperature only reached the high 40's, it felt downright balmy compared to what we've been going through. Our family decided to head out to Clemyjontri Park, the mother of all playgrounds. Bodhi and his parents were already there, so the experience was made even more fun. As you can see from today's photos, Sophie was happy, happy, happy!

Dressed and ready to go!

There was a little trepidation when we first arrived...

...but seeing Bobo made it all better.

Good-bye hug! It was a great day.

Thursday, March 4, 2010

Creamy Chicken and Wild Rice Soup

It's been a while since I've tried out a new recipe, since work has been stressful lately and I've been totally drained by the time I come home. This week, I decided to shake things up a bit (cause I'm wild like that) and try out a couple of new recipes that my sister was raving about.

The first is Creamy Chicken and Wild Rice soup, a similar version of which you may have tried at Panera before. This homemade version is just as good, and not laden with preservatives, sodium or anything else unnatural. Darren says it's one of the best soups he's ever had, so that made my night right there :)

4 cups chicken broth
2 cups water
2 cooked, boneless chicken breast halves, shredded
1 - 6 oz package fast cook long grain and wild rice with seasoning packet

1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
3/4 cup all purpose flour
1/2 cup butter
1 cup heavy cream
1 cup whole milk

1. In a large pot over medium heat, combine broth, water and chicken. Bring just to boiling, then stir in rice, reserving seasoning packet. Cover and remove from heat.

By the way, I used Uncle Ben's rice...it was perfect for this recipe.

2. In a small bowl, combine salt, pepper and flour. In a medium saucepan over medium heat, melt butter. Stir in contents of seasoning packet until mixture is bubbly. Reduce heat to low, then stir in flour mixture by tablespoons, to form a roux. Whisk in cream & milk, a little at a time, until fully incorporated and smooth. Cook until thickened, 5 minutes.

3. Stir cream mixture into broth and rice. Cook over medium heat until heated through, 10 to 15 minutes.

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Darn you, Steve Jobs!

Today I decided that I needed a "mental health break" from the stress of work, so I left the office a little early and ran some kid-free errands (sadly, this is what moms consider fun now) and then went to Baby Gap to redeem some coupons I had. I bought this cute romper for Sophie which I had been pining over for a while. Tonight, I asked her to model it for me, and this was the best she could do...she could not peel her eyes away from Darren's ipod, not even for a minute. Oy vey.....