Sisters with Flair

Sunday, October 31, 2010

Bountiful Baskets

So I've been taking a couple online classes, like I've said and I've been learning a lot in my nutrition class. I've always tried to make our meals pretty balanced, but let's face it, we're not "salad people." Veggies always seem like a burden to eat, so I usually only buy my standard go-to vegetables: bell peppers, onions, broccoli, carrots. I rarely verge outside those lines. Sad, I know. I've had friends telling me all year how I need to order a bountiful basket every week and how good of produce you get for only $15. Sounds great, but they only have a short ordering window every week and I would always forget. Well, last week, I remembered and I got my first basket. IT WAS AWESOME!!! I planned my meals according to what veggies I needed to use up and we were eating so many more than we ever eat. Fruit has always been easy for us to go through, but it was so awesome to get all this produce for so cheap! Their website says that you're saving $35 a week in produce by contributing to this co-op.
Ok, so here's what you do, go onto their website and see if they have your town in the system, then order sometime between Monday night and Tuesday night (order early because they run out) and then pick up the produce at the designated time on Saturday. I mean, seriously look at all the food that I got this week and tell me you could buy that at the grocery store for fifteen bucks. What was that? You can't? I KNOW! Ok, so off you go to their website. Don't forget Mandy sent ya!

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Happy Birthday to us!

Well it's been a year folks since our first blog post. I can't believe a year has gone by and Oprah hasn't had us on her show? No calls from Nate Berkus either. Bummer..... good thing my expectations have never been real high or it might be a lame blog birthday! Why did we begin to blog if it wasn't to achieve unrealistic goals of fame and fortune then? Mainly, it's 3 sisters & my parents trying to stay close even though we live half way cross the country from each other. We set goals to try to finish all our lofty projects, we get ideas from each other, and we stay a little sane by having to use our big-girls vocabulary after spending hours a day playing with little ones and singing Dora songs. This is where I come to vent about ridiculously exhausting projects like my mason jar chandelier or my cooking disasters with Cayenne Pepper-facing. It's where I dream of furniture shopping, dress shopping & a little photoshopping. It's where my simple and completely boring (and I'm grateful for boring!) life find a little glamour for just a moment. I feel like my SAHM world is just a little bigger than beyond my fence when I type into this small little blog box. I love you, little blog with our 63 followers. Happy blog-aversary!

So for a real post.... I'm sure you've seen a million of these subway signs around right? Potterybarn has them and my fave store ZGallerie has this one

Well my padres decided to make their own. Cuz my parents are cooler than yours and they do stuff like that......(smiles). So they decided to make one with all the streets they've lived on since they were married. My mom found a piece of thin wood at Home Depot which was 24"x48". My dad made a frame to go around it, cuz he's cool like that too.... and with a little vinyl magic and some paint and sanding they made this little beauty to go in their future ultra-chic living room (which they are making-over as I speak)! I can't wait to see all their details to this room and blog about them. My parents taught me everything I need to know about do-it-yourself-ing. They have reupholstered many a couch, built furniture, painted harliquins on the ceiling, and can tile floors and make concrete counters. Yeah, somewhere between them and the 3 kids before me, I missed out on their talent, but I can brag about theirs! Here is the more personalized and MUCH cheaper version of subway art.

And now I'm off to eat cake wearing my birthday suit. "What? Gross!" You say. Oh, alright I'll wear something else- but nothing in my wardrobe has as much flair as my birthday suit! And when I say flair, I pretty much mean rolls. But lets call them ruffles for today, cuz I LOVE ruffles and ruffles remind me of truffles. Mmmmm, good thing its my blog birthday. Calories don't count on blog birthdays!

Monday, October 25, 2010

Carseat Cover

Well, it turns out that taking 6 credits online right before you have a baby is not such a brilliant idea after all. Hmmm, who knew? But I am determined to get some baby-related projects done before due-day. I started noticing these carseat covers everywhere when my two-year-old was about 6 months old and we didn't really need it anymore. So making one of these has been high on my to-do list. I found an awesomely easy tutorial for making them here. So awesome. So easy. PERFECT baby shower gift.
Since having my first, my family will testify to my being a paranoid germiphobe. Seriously get creeped out by people. And having a winter baby will probably up the anty a little bit. I may start keeping a bottle of hand santizer outside my front door so people can use it on their way into my house. I believe that I single-handedly kept our entire family from getting sick last year at DisneyWorld because I personally gave each person a dollop of heaven each time they came off a ride. And although they rolled their eyes each time they rubbed their hands together, they didn't get swine flu- did you mom?? Ok, anyway, these things are great and will keep people off my baby!!

I used a cute flannel for the outside and then a plain minky for the inside. I figure it will be a bit warmer for winter than a thinner fabic.

(Insert baby here in 7 weeks!)

Sunday, October 24, 2010

My Birthday Tradition

I love parties. I love cake. I love finding the perfect gift that makes the recipient hold their breath when they open it. So why do I hate, loathe, sob a little when it comes to my children's birthdays? Is it because I can't stop them from growing up? Or is it more selfish and I can't stop getting older & their birthdays make me realize that? Either way, I get a little sad every time one of their birthdays comes around. This is a tradition that I started when my first was about 3. A birthday letter. It's pretty simple. I write them a letter each year on their birthday going over the funny things they do or events that transpired over the last year and their extravagant party that I sacrificed hours for. (They probably won't remember 90% of all the crap I do for them so I like to document it for them- you know, just to have proof in those ugly teenage years that my girls swear they will never go thru!) The plan is that if they're, oh say....... 30 when they get married, I will give them one of their letters each day for 30 days before their wedding. Cute right? Sentimental right? Ultra cheesy? Um, yeah, it's me remember! IMG_7274 IMG_7275 copy My sista Renee and I made these cute boxes and I'm dying to make one for each of my kids to put their birthday letters in. We found unfinished wooden boxes at some Hobby stores and unscrewed the sure-to-eventually-fall-off cheap clasp and E6000 glued on a cute fleur de lis. (sp?) We painted the inside and outside of the box black and sanded the edges. Then we printed a picture larger than the outside of the box and cut it to size. Next step, mod podge the picture to the top of the box. TIP: You must have the picture printed at a store if you mod podge. Home printers and mod podge don't mix- trust me! Another tip: use a light coat of mod podge on the box itself, and a very light coat on the back of the picture. Make sure it dries completely before mod podging the top of the picture or you'll get wrinkles! Let it dry for a few hours and you end up having a super cute jewelry, treasure or letter box! So will I still be sad this week when my baby turns 2? Totally. Will I gorge on cake to dull the pain? Totally. And will his 2nd birthday letter be soaked in tears? Um.... maybe, but more likely it will have chocolate smears on it. I'm pathetic that way.

Friday, October 22, 2010

I need to getaway!

I know I should be thinking of Halloween right now. I am planning a little Halloween Party for my cute little class I teach at church. 12- 3&4 year olds! I should be planning my son's 2 year old birthday next week (sniff,sniff), a Halloween block party & my daughter's birthday. But those consist of a BIG to-do list. I should be photoshopping the 100,000 pictures on my computer. I wish I was exaggerating on that number but my computer crashed a little bit this week because I hit the maximum capacity for photos. Didn't think that was possible? Me neither! So instead of working on my huge list of projects, I am sitting at the computer listening to Train- Hey, Soul Sister & planning vacations that we'll probably never go on. I'm making a huge bucket list of places to travel "One Day". You know "one day", when I have unlimited funds, time & the kids are grown. I dreamt the other night a client paid me to go to Paris and take some pictures so they could hang them on their wall. Funny thing was, Paris in my dream looked more like Paris, Texas! I need to get out of here. I need to spread my wings and explore and veg and not be on the computer or doing laundry or cleaning bathrooms or cleaning up throw-up. Yeah, this week has been "eventful" & my weekend isn't going to be relaxing either. So I dream. And I plan. And I've come up with the hopefully the easiest Thanksgiving I'll ever have. No cleaning & cooking & home renovation projects required.

We are going to Great Wolf Lodge for Thanksgiving this year. They even have a Thanksgiving dinner buffet. I'm sure the food won't be anything to brag over, hopefully it will be edible. (I typed in the code HOWLIDAYS and saved too!) But the thing is, I won't have to do a thing other than pack a swimsuit. No cleaning for hours before and hours after the dinner. No going to 3 different grocery stores to find all the ingredients. No waking up at 5am to get the turkey in the oven. No, I will sleep in. I probably won't even do the girls hair. (If you know me, you know that their hair is AWFUL to do & not doing it is almost like a vacation!) I will simply pack swimsuits & maybe a couple of toothbrushes and some flip flops and get in the car for a 20 minute drive. Interested in an easy non-traditional Thanksgiving? Wanna come? I'll see ya there! It's no Paris, Italy or even Disney World, but it's an easy getaway that I can do without making a million lists and a million trips to various stores & spend packing & doing laundry for 3 days. Yes, I need to plan more little getaways, because waiting 6-10 months for a single BIG getaway is just way too long! So watcha doing for Thanksgiving?

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

gift idea

So this is probably old news to most of you, but I squealed like a little girl @a Jonas Bros Concert when I saw this. It will surely be on my Christmas list this year! This company makes cool covers for your phones and ipads. But did you know that you can upload your own photos? You can put your kids, grandkids, business info on your phone? The possibilities are endless. I'm so stinkin excited! I can't wait to order one for me, my husband & one for the ipad. The phone covers start at $14.95 and you can order matching wallpaper. I can't wait to get my family photos done to order one! One gift off my list- oh yeah! Just 77 more presents to go........

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Mishaps in cooking......

I had this plan in my head that tonight would be different. I would have a relaxing night. We only had piano lessons that afternoon and we were home much earlier than on our hectic dance/gymnastics nights. Yes tonight would be relaxing. I even told the girls that we were going to have a PEACEFUL evening. When dad got home, we would already be in pajamas, fed & have a few minutes as a family to just relax and play a game. Yes. That was my brilliant plan. My plans are perfect in my head, not so perfect in reality though. So I began making dinner, nothing fancy but something completely out of the norm for me. Tacos with ground beef. Ground beef is rare for me to cook because its just disgusting to watch it cook, and the smell is insulting to my nose. I happened to be on the phone and not paying attention when I coated the cooked meat with Cayenne Pepper instead of Taco Seasoning. I hung up the phone, rinsed the meat several times thru a colander and hoped I hadn't ruined dinner. Then I added the taco seasoning. I didnt want to make the same mistake as before so I put the huge Costco-size container of Cayenne pepper away on the top shelf. Tippy toes, arm extended and POOF! The darn lid wasn't on! The bottle spilled onto my face, up my nose, into my ear, into my mouth, down my shirt & then onto the floor. I had to just laugh. It was ridiculous!
(photos by my almost-as-dramatic-as-me 8 yr old)

So my 8 yr old grabs the camera, because at this point I was still laughing. And closing my eyes, trying to find my way to the sink to dump off remnants of chile dust on my face. Then came the burning! My lips & mouth were on fire! I had to shower and just hang my tongue in running water. After my shower I began to clean up the remnants and that's when my ear began to BURN! It felt like flames coming out of it. And the pain began to get deeper and deeper into my ear canal. Could I go deaf? I called my mom. She didn't know. I tried hubby, not so helpful other than laughing. I called poison control. I thought they got paid NOT TO LAUGH, but that isn't the case. After all was said and done, you can be relieved that my face & mouth are still attached to my head. And I can hear. And YES, I can hear you laughing at me right now. And as Mandy would say after years of watching Full House episodes (I won't admit that I watched them with her), "HOW RUDE!"

Peaceful evening? What was I thinking? There's never a dull moment when there's 3 of us girls in the house and a little boy. Controlled Chaos is the goal tomorrow! What would be the lesson I learn from this experience? Answer: I was right, ground beef is the bane of my existence. Avoid at all cost. That, and I need to pick up more cayenne pepper at the grocery store tomorrow.

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

MY new rug

So the bland, predictable, indecisive person in me won the latest decorating battle. But at least the battle is over! After 8 long, slippery, cold months, we finally got a rug for the living room. It was high on my "to get" list before baby comes. So here's the before of my living room. It was definitely missing something- although leaps and bounds from the wall to wall carpeting we had prior.

And here's the after! Doesn't it just make the room so much more warm and inviting? Hubby wasn't understanding why we would do all the work of putting that floor in to only cover it up with a rug (men, sheesh:), but I'm just thrilled with it. Even if it isn't quite the floor flair Andrea's got going in her living room. But I can't copy her on everything, I suppose.

I am also THRILLED with the fact that I picked it up from Home Depot online and got a stellar deal on it. Paid about a third of what I had expected to fork out for a new rug. Sweet.

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Fried Rice

I'm at an all time low peeps. After enjoying my parents for two weeks, eating incredible food & desserts & shopping, I can't button up my pants! Its diet time. No more chocolate, no more ice cream, no more caramels and creme brulee. (Yeah, we really do eat like that when my padres come to visit) Its time to diet before the Thanksgiving week gorge and the Christmas Shortbread come out. So what do I do? I start dreaming about food I shouldn't have! This right now is what would really hit the spot. Some think of homemade Mac&Cheese as comfort food, but I'm convinced its good Fried Rice! Here's my super easy & yummy fried rice recipe from the restaurant Benihana:
Benihana Japanese Fried Rice:
-2 Cups cooked Rice (no instant or quick) -2 eggs, beaten
-1 Cup frozen peas -2 TBL finely grated carrot
-1/2 C diced onion -1/2 TBL butter
-2 TBL soy sauce -salt & pepper to taste
Cook rice before hand & referigerate. Scramble eggs in a fry pan over medium heat. Chop cooked eggs into small bits with spatula while cooking. Set eggs aside. Melt butter in a large fry pan, on med/high hea. When butter is melted add rice & veggies & then add soy sauce plus salt & pepper and cook for 6-8 minutes. Stirring the entire time.
*I usually double the butter & soy sauce, (hence my dieting) and add chicken. I like make this with leftover rice. Super easy & filling!

Friday, October 8, 2010

Things I heart.....

Do you go to sleep everynight dreaming of furniture and decorating? Is that weird? Cause if it is, I totally don't do that. I've practically redone every room in my house when I had my house painted. But its the accessories I can't ever get right. And the accessories are what make your room go from nice to FABULOUS! Even though I have most major peices of furniture these are some of the items I may (or may not) go to sleep dreaming about.......

(image from Restoration Hardware)

Don't you just love the world war II look that they've come out with recently? It makes my heart skip a beat. sigh.........

I can't remember where I saw this bedside beauty. But I dream about a metallic or mirrored side table every time I look at my wood one with a cup stain.

(image by z gallerie)
Lighting should be BLING! I want a whole house lighting makeover and I would begin with this gem. I don't even think it matters where I'd put it. It would be spectacular!

(image by Restoration Hardware)
This industrial desk has my heart all over it. I'm blowing kisses to you right now you vintage reproduction of a France mail desk. You are smokin'!

(Z gallerie again)

Having a "feeling fat day"? Um, I don't think so. This chair makes you look hotter just chilaxin in it! I wonder if I could bring it to my next doctor appt when they weigh me and frown? Seriously I quadruple heart pass you turquoise leather chair. I want you to be my fourth child because you cost more than my 3rd. Another long sigh.
Another Z gallerie image. But this orange pillow stands for everything I believe in. Orange, ruffles & bold. You make any room pop with this accessory.

And last but not least. What began my recent obsession (ok I've been possessed) with industrial glam. Industrial Glam? Did I just coin a new design phrase? I don't know, but that totally sounds like my style! These chairs are seriously cool from Restoration Hardware. They totally look like fighter pilot chairs and that's just cool. Totally beats your husbands bum-shaped-worn recliner! So there you have it. I pretty much want to marry Restoration Hardware & Z Gallerie and have darling babies named Living, Dining, Bedroom & Office. Sweet dreams my little Indy-glams!

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

An apple a day...

I know what you're thinking. What happened to the "sisters" in sisterswithflair? Well, I haven't fallen off the face of the earth, just gotten out of the bloggy-vibe and thought I should actually post something. Did ya know that being pregnant makes you super-tired? All the time?? Oh, you didn't? Well...

Here are my not-so beautiful carmel apples that I made last night. Sister Annie introduced me to these pretty little things from the Rocky Mountain Chocolate Factory about 10 years ago- or so. But the nearest one being about 4 hours away, and the fact that they're 8 bucks a pop- yikes. So I usually try to make them every year. They never turn out pretty, but they always turn out good! I don't have any great secrets, just follow the directions to a bag of carmels, dip the apples, refrigerate for an hour, then melt the white chocolate chips, dip the apples again, then quickly dip into cinnamon sugar and plop back in the fridge. Amazing. I don't know why I wait until fall hits every year, I should be making them all the time. Oh well, it's the kiddo's naptime and I've got an apple in the fridge calling me... doctor's orders!

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Garbage or Art?

This is one of my finds from the Round Top flea market. I saw these babies leaned up against a shed and just had to have them. (I think I squealed like a banchee when I saw them) I knew I needed a big statement piece above my fireplace. With my metallic (Ralph Lauren Silver metallic) painted wall they don't stand out as much as I had hoped. This is (again) one of those ideas where I don't know if its totally crazy and I love it....... or its just totally crazy. What do you think? Garbage? Or Art? Regardless, I'm keeping it for awhile. Something about shoving 7 feet of metal into the suburban and driving with my head tilted to the side so I don't get decapitated for 5 hours makes me want to hold onto these for awhile longer. That, and I'm lazy. So totally tell me they are fabulous and unique and you also want some just like it and I'll feel all better. And oh.... if you do want one, I actually have one more. Its a straight arrow! So you don't have to be jealous of me :)

On a separate note. I'm in love with all things camera. My soon-to-be newest hobby is video recording. I took some short 30 second or so clips from my little brothers wedding. Making the centerpieces, cooking, setting up tables, getting dressed & the reception itself. My husband helped me edit it and I set the whole thing to some really funky music. It was WAY MORE FUN to watch than a boring twenty minute video that you need to watch with a barf bag for motion sickness! Here's where I got the idea: Check out there clips and go try to make your own. It took about 2.5 hours to edit, but that was us trying to figure out this really complicated program too. I tried to upload our video to show you, but I can't figure out how to shrink down the file enough. Sorry peeps! Go play & make your own...... its seriously the coolest thing ever!