Watching the Sunrise

I both love and hate mornings like this. I know I’ll hit the wall at some inconvenient time in a few hours, but for now I’m peaceful.

Kelsey woke me up through the monitor “singing” at about 4:30am. I went and checked on her and she had flipped herself over. I flipped her back and she fell back asleep for a little while. Unfortunately, I couldn’t really fall back asleep and just tossed and turned for a little while. At about 5:30am she started back up and actually started crying so I went and got her.

View of the window from sitting on the living room floor

I’m not a morning person, but I know I’ll miss these early morning nursing sessions one day. The house is quiet so I can hear her breathing and suckling, I can hear my husband snoring from the bedroom, the cats have free reign of the house and are lounging on the couches, and I can have a little time to myself once Kelsey falls back asleep with a full belly.

I watch the sunrise (it still amazes me how it less than 1 hour it can go from pitch black to light) and I take the time to browse through linky party links and drool over other people’s blogs and photos and get ideas to add to my ever expanding list of things I want to try.

This morning I enjoyed a cookie and some milk (why not?) after starting a load of laundry.

I’m looking forward to seeing my sister and her husband today as they pass through town. I’m also going to try to take some pictures of them while they are here. I am enjoying practicing my photography on Kelsey but it will be nice to practice with subjects taller than 2 feet.

Now, I hear the rustling of crinkly baby toys coming from Kelsey’s room so she’ll be calling for me soon. I think it’s time to start the coffee.

Flower and Ribbon Combo Hair Clip

I’ve been working on a bunch of hair clips lately but I made one that I really liked and thought I’d share it with you. I love trying to figure out new ways to use the stuff I already have around here.

Flower and Ribbon Combo Hair Clip

Supplies:

  • Fake Daisy (or similar) flower (Dollar Tree and on sale at Michael’s are where I usually get mine)
  • Ribbon, 2 colors/patterns
  • Accent (button, bottle top, rhinestone, patch, etc)
  • Alligator clip (from Sally Beauty Supply)
  • Glue gun and glue sticks
  • Scissors
  • Lighter

Instructions:

As with the Ribbon Flower, begin by covering a clip with ribbon. This step is not necessary but it does make for a neater final product. My method: Choose one of your ribbons, singe the edge to avoid fraying and hold it in the clip. Run a bead of hot glue along the top and fold the ribbon over. Cut the ribbon to length to cover the portion of the back wear your fingers hold the clip, singe the edge and glue down. I like to leave the bottom open, or uncovered.

Take one or more of the flowers apart and lay petal layers on top of each other. Use a dab of glue between each to make sure all layers stick together. (BONUS: If you just add your accent and slap it on a clip, you have your basic flower clip!)

Cut 3 pieces of the “under” ribbon to just shorter than the diameter of the flower. To create the points, fold the tip in half and snip on a diagonal.

Cut 3 pieces of the main ribbon so that when it is in a flattened loop it is just smaller than flower and “under” ribbon. Glue ends together to create the loop then flatten by glueing top to bottom of your loop.

Glue each piece of the under ribbon on to the flower, laying the first two in an “X” shape and the third up and down. Again, glue the loops to your flower and ribbon by laying the first two in an “X” shape and the third across (should fall in between the “under” ribbon).Glue your accent to the center on top of your stacked flower and ribbons.

Finally, run a bead of glue on the top of your ribbon covered clip and press onto the back to create a hair clip. You could use a different style of hair barrette, glue to headband, or even a pin back for different uses. I use my hair clips with crocheted headbands for my daughter.

Happy baby!

Rather buy one instead? Check out the hair clips I have for sale and my giveaway! Find me on Facebook!

Other hair clips I've made recently!

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Water Pictures, Con’t

We had the sprayground to ourselves this afternoon. It rained just after lunch time so I guess that’s why no one was out. It was humid, but since it was a little overcast it wasn’t so bright out. It was nice to be able to walk around and not worry about other kids running Kelsey over. We didn’t stay long but we had a good time running our hands through the water.

Here are more pictures I took. I think I’m starting to get better. I see photos that I like and then try to make a mental note to try out a concept or two. I worked on angling the camera for a while and it’s coming a little more naturally now. Now I’m working on the subject being off center.

i heart faces: Water Challenge

Catching Water

This week’s photo challenge over at www.iheartfaces.com is “Water.” We recently discovered that Kelsey actually enjoys playing in the water and doesn’t mind the water splashing her at the sprayground.

There is a free, public park near our house so now that she is sitting up very well and interested in exploring, we have somewhere to hang out on hot days. We’ve already had a playgroup playdate there and can’t wait to do more!

(More photos from today here.)

Also being entered at http://thepapermama.blogspot.com/, Summertime Photo Challenge.

31 Looks Good

I turn 31 tomorrow but you know, it looks pretty good. I am celebrating as a Mommy for the first time and I get to enjoy the Florida weather with my husband. This time last year I was almost half way through my pregnancy and we had just moved to Tampa (hadn’t even found a place to live yet!).

Hanging out at the beach!

We went to Spa Beach, at the base of the St. Petersburg Pier, this morning so my husband could take some photos for a friend which meant I got to hang out with Kelsey and get a little color. It’s a nice little beach without too many people and nearby parking. With the pier, museums, and shopping nearby you could park once and make a day out of it but that wasn’t our plan today.

Of course, it also means I’ll be finding sand all over the place for the next week! After some much needed showers and unpacking the car we headed out for lunch.

We decided to check out a new-to-us restaurant that is just up the road. Love’s Artifacts Bar and Grill had caught our eye a couple of times as we drove past it but it honestly looked more like a bar than a grill from the outside so it never really jumped to the top of the “let’s try that place” list. That was, until I saw their billboard reading “Selected for Food Networks Diners, Drive-ins & Dives.” Well, if Guy’s gonna be there then maybe we should really check it out! (Not sure if they’ve taped it already or not, forgot to ask, but if not, I’m going to have to try to go!)

At MacDill and Gandy

It was cute on the inside, kitschy. It’s kind of like a restaurant opened up in an antique store. The plates and silverware are all mismatched sets and there are all sorts of “artifacts” on the walls, making walls and on display. We sat under a stained glass window and a World War something display of items and on our table was an antique book under an old lamp and the ketchup, mustard and sugar.

I did a little research before we went and found out that the item to have is their fried chicken. Thankfully, they had a lunch buffet that featured the fried chicken, bbq ribs, salad, a baked pasta dish and an assortment of sides. Not only was it great to get us in and out of there (eating out has become dine and run before Kelsey gets bored playing with her toys) but I also got a chance to sample their sides. The fried chicken was delicious; crispy but not flaky skin and juicy on the inside. The ribs were really tender and flavorful. The potatoes, grits, baked beans and rice weren’t bad either.

A lovely little treat awaited me at home – Kelsey took a nice long nap which meant that the hubby and I got to take one, too!

At Love's

Tomorrow I’m hoping I can take my new bike, a birthday present from my Mom, out for a ride when Kelsey takes her morning nap and before the hubby heads in to work. Then I’m going to try to take advantage of some birthday freebies! Why not?

Finally, I’m looking forward to playing with the electronic drum set my husband gave me. I’ve been wanting one for a while and now I’m kind of more excited about letting Kelsey play on them than playing by myself.

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Week of Treats in Review

We had an unusually social week this week. I’m happy that we got to get out and socialize and it gave me an excuse to make a few things.

It started on Saturday with the dinner at Sabrina’s and Red Velvet Cake Cookie Sandwiches. On Sunday we went to a friend’s 1st birthday party. I made her a little collection of hair clips in red since their family are big Oklahoma fans. I hope they like them.

Strawberry Cake Cookie Sandwiches

On Tuesday I had a MacDill AFB Enlisted Spouses Club planning meeting to go to. The next two recipes basically stemmed from not wanting things to go to waste. I had half of the can of cream cheese frosting left over from the last batch of cake cookies so I made another batch with strawberry cake mix I found for about $1 on Price Cut at Target. They were a hit again and went fast!

My mother was in town last weekend and left some black olives and mushrooms leftover from a veggie pizza we made. Well, neither my husband nor I really eat either them but, again, I didn’t want them to go to waste. I used www.supercook.com to see if I could find something to do with them and found this Mushroom Olive Salad recipe. I substituted the olives and didn’t use the measurements in the recipe, just tossed in the ingredients until it looked right. Fortunately, our hosts’ husband likes both black olives and mushroom and he apparently liked this recipe so much he had to be reminded that he did not have to eat the whole bowl in one sitting. I think this would be good for a party or potluck dish or maybe added to some pasta and chicken to make it a meal.

Finally, we met a bunch of military spouses and children at a local splashground on Wednesday. I had seen several granola bar recipes around the internet and finally found one that used quick oats (we’ve been on an oatmeal kick and have been buying it from Sam’s Club so we had plenty on hand!). We had some of the ingredients in the cupboards, I used my $.55/1 Eagle Brand Sweetened Condensed Milk coupon (it was also on sale at Publix) and took advantage of the Tuesday military discount at Walgreens for a few more ingredients. Here is what was in my version of these Easy Granola Bars.

Easy Granola Bars

  • 3 cups quick-cooking oats
  • 1 (14 ounce) can sweetened condensed milk
  • 2 tablespoon butter, melted
  • 1 cup tropical dried fruit mix
  • 1 cup chopped macadamia nuts
  • 1 cup semisweet chocolate chips
  • 1/2 cup sunflower seeds
  • 1/4 cup flax seed meal

I took them with me to the splashground but forgot to tell people that I had them until the snacks had already come out but my husband and I split one and thought they were pretty good. Chewy, sweet, and filling. However, I don’t know if this is something I would use too often if I had to purchase all the ingredients. If you have enough odds and ends around or know you’ll be making a lot of them it’s worth it for a customized version of the sometimes too sugary store granola bars.

We had some family portraits taken this morning and finally took Kelsey to the pool for the first time this afternoon. Hoping to make Watermelon Frosties this weekend but other than that, I’m looking forward to tomorrow’s activities … nothing!

Photo by Frontdorr Photos

Linking to www.thefrugalgirls.com!

Blog Post Interrupted

Kelsey was playing nicely on the floor so I decided to try to quickly write a new post. Funny enough, it was going to be something along the lines of balance and how the blogging, cooking and crafting is going.

However, by the time I logged in to WordPress, took the picture above, checked a few things and opened a new post, Kelsey had crawled over and decided to practice her latest skill again, using the couch to pull herself up.

Then I pulled her up so she could give me some slobbery kisses, nurse and play a little.

Hence, this is the post your getting now that she’s gone to playing and has found my laptop power cord… gotta go!