February 26, 2010

Aren't these gorgeous?

National Geographic photographs make my jaw drop. It can be easy to forget how amazing our world really is. I'm sure you'd agree, especially after watching Planet Earth. (You've watched that, right? It should be required viewing for everyone on the planet.) Check out these gorgeous pictures - you can use them as backgrounds on your personal devices or computer. Aren't they amazing?

All images from here.

Mango Leaf

*Image from Mango Leaf

Mango Leaf has some really beautiful bowls. And serving platters and such. All made out of environmentally-friendly bamboo. In a ton of fun, bright colors. Or in something more neutral if you'd prefer. Em, want one of these on your Christmas list?

February 25, 2010

Kitchen Inspiration

*Image from HouseBeautiful

I love this kitchen. It seems like such a warm mixture of new and old. What a perfect shade of green. And gorgeous hardwood floors. It looks like it smells like chocolate chip cookies and wine. I want to pull up one of those chairs and have a chat with a friend.

February 24, 2010

Magpie Lovely

*Image from Magpie Lovely

Magpie Lovely is a cute shop with some very cute things. Although I don't need them, I love the pillow covers and all the adorable little girl clothes. I think I really must have this orange shirt, though. I love orange, and it's rare that you can find it. Not to mention that it looks super comfy too.

Family....I know it's a little early...my birthday isn't for another month. But if you were looking for ideas...don't you think this orange shirt would look great on me?

Oh, and did I mention that Tangled & True is offering a discount to their readers? Simply enter code TT15 to receive 15% off your purchase! Good only today and tomorrow.

February 23, 2010

Photos of the Day

Don't ask me what he was doing here. He was running around the house like a maniac, pretending to be different kinds of animals. Not sure what this one was, because he couldn't stop laughing long enough to tell me.
And this little guy's primary activity, aside from pushing himself backwards around the room, is smiling.

Menu of the Week

*Image from myrecipes.com

Baked Chicken and Rice with Black Beans

New England Clam and Corn Chowder
Crusty Multigrain Bread

Broken Noodles with Tomato Sauce and Ricotta

Fish Sticks
Sweet Potatoes

Goat Cheese and Roasted Corn Quesadillas
Black Beans

February 22, 2010

Etsy Pick: The Love Shop

I recently stumbled across this fun shop on Etsy. They have some really great prints. I especially love the one above, because "Fly Me to the Moon" was the song my husband and I danced to at our wedding. I'm not quite sure where I'd put one of these prints in our house, but once I figure it out, I'll know where to go.

February 19, 2010

Crooked Still

This week's music pick: Crooked Still. I've come to rely on friends' recommendations, since I currently lack the time to explore new music. This one comes from my husband's best friend, and they're based right here in Boston. I have a soft spot in my heart for bluegrass, and this band makes it very accessible. Amazing musicianship and beautiful songs.

I included two videos, because I couldn't choose just one. Florence is my current favorite song, but the videos from the Shetland Folk Festival are really amazing, so I thought I'd include a fun one from there as well.

February 18, 2010

Menu of the Week

*Image from Cooking Light
Good crusty multigrain bread

Rice Pilaf

Whole wheat pasta

Chunky Vegetarian Chili (oh, how I love being able to pull meals out of my freezer!)
Corn bread

February 17, 2010

Winter Wonderland

We woke up to a winter wonderland this morning. Absolutely breathtaking. Thanks to Mary at Pretty Good for capturing it in this gorgeous photo.


So this is what Aaron does when he's left alone with the Mac...

February 14, 2010

Children's Museum

We've talked about going to the Boston Children's Museum ever since A was born. This weekend, we finally did it. He is the perfect age to appreciate it, and he had a blast!

We got down on our back to look up into a tank of turtles. It was fun to point and watch the turtle tummies as they swam across the tank.
A definitely got to release some energy. Here he is using his arms to turn the pedals of a bike that powers a line of lights.

There was a special exhibit on Curious George.
Little N didn't seem to mind that we interrupted his normal morning nap. He still smiled at everyone who looked at him. (Which was everyone, because really, how cute is he?)
And despite having a large number of rooms and displays....A could easily have spent the entire day in this room of balls.

After a couple hours at the museum, we left as it was starting to get crowded to the point of insanity. We then went to Flour for lunch. Yum. It is a little high-maintenance taking two little ones out on such an outing, but it was totally worth it. We had a great time!

February 13, 2010

I Love the Olympics

I love the Olympics. It is so much fun to watch, starting with the parade of athletes during the opening ceremonies. I'll be having fun watching over the next couple weeks. I love the interviews with the snowboarders, who are always totally relaxed and having a blast. I enjoy figure skating. The luge is exciting and scary. The downhill skiing is amazingly fast. The ski jumping is so awesome. Curling kinda cracks me up. And the list goes on.

I hope you enjoy it too! Go team USA!

Images via boston.com

February 11, 2010

Living in the Moment

I received the following quote in my email inbox the other day:

It struck me that I have not been doing this lately. I haven't been breathing and taking time to appreciate things. I've been surviving - moving from making breakfast to packing lunches, dropping off at school, working, picking up from school, making dinner, doing dishes, folding laundry....you get the point. I've been focused on just making it through it each day without going crazy. Even more than that, I've actually thought about making it through the winter, surviving until the little boy starts sleeping through the night more consistently...

I don't want to paint a completely dark picture. I do have moments - sweet, snuggly moments with my boys, tons of hugs and kisses, beautiful sunrises, happy songs... - but I want to have more of them. I want my life to be one moment after another, with me living fully and appreciating each one. And don't get me wrong. I do understand I'll still have to wipe the counters and change dirty diapers and sit in meetings and do all sorts of things I'd rather not do; but even in those moments, there is beauty and happiness, and I need to find it again.

When I thought about how to do this, I realized that it is so easy. It's just a matter of deciding to do it! I also reviewed a few old posts on this very blog that helped serve as reminders:

Find Some Peace and Quiet - I find this harder to do in the winter for some reason, even though it is the perfect season to appreciate the dark and quiet.
Totally and Completely in Love - This is more true than ever, and I could probably come up with a similar list every day.
Smile, Breathe, and Go Slowly - A perfect mantra for these crazy busy days.
Serenity - An eerily similar post from almost two years ago. (Wow. Have I really been blogging for two years?!?)

Have a happy and peaceful day!

February 10, 2010

Yellow Flowers, Sleep, and New Music

This week's Three Beautiful Things:

1. These beautiful yellow flowers adorning my dining room table. I have no idea what they're called, but they're so lovely and they smell fabulous. Nothing like a little patch of yellow to brighten up an otherwise gray and cold February.

2. N slept last night. Okay, he woke up once, but I didn't have to go to him and he went back to sleep. It's amazing how fabulous sleep can be.

3. I filled the CD player in my car with new music, and I'm enjoying getting to know each disc. I love listening to new music.

February 9, 2010

2010 To-Do List

*We don't spend enough time at the beach. We already have a week booked in July, and I want to get to the beach up here too. Beaches are awesome.

I'm sure there are a ton more things I could put on this. But between this little list and my overall goals, I'm poised to have a very good year.

1. Yoga class (can I make it happen this year?)
2. Have a late summer cookout
3. Invite my "mom friends" and their families to a brunch
4. Write 3 letters (staying small to keep me motivated....if I can do 3, perhaps I can do more)
5. Learn new songs on my guitar
6. Go to a local restaurant we've never tried
7. Go to the Children's Museum (yes, it's all the way downtown and will interfere with little one's nap, but A will have a blast, so it'll be worth it)
8. Finish our 2009 family photo album
9. Finish our 2010 family photo album
10. Find a chair for our office
11. Choose something to display in the little shelves on our mantle
12. Print recent pictures to display on my desk at work
13. Buy a pair of shorts that fit and do not have paint on them
14. Take the boys to the beach
15. Celebrate my sister's marriage (i know, it's a freebie, but it's still super fun!)
16. Make it worthwhile to get a membership at the farm (cherry-picking, strawberry-picking, apple-picking, plus a train to ride and a playground on which to play....of course it's worth it!)
17. Plant a more successful garden (can't be too hard to improve on last year)
18. Go to a Red Sox game (i haven't been in three years! too long!)
19. Take a bubble bath
20. Send out holiday cards (i missed this year, and i didn't like it!)

*I'm not even talking anything fancy...just some basic shorts. In the time it took me to write this post, I could've ordered some. Should be an easy item to check off the list, right?

February 8, 2010

Reading List

What are you all reading these days? I just finished The Hour I First Believed, by Wally Lamb. It is long, and complex, but I ultimately found it worthwhile.

I decided to choose a lighter read for my next book - Ask Again Later, by Jill Davis. My nightstand has a stack of unread books, waiting for me. The Help, by Kathryn Stockett, is up next. And I want to give The Poisonwood Bible another chance. Everyone I know loved it, and I never managed to finish it.

What's on your nightstand?

Menu of the Week

Chicken with Rosemary Sauce, angel hair, broccoli
Turkey Mini Meat Loaves, mashed potatoes, carrots
Pasta with Artichoke/Lemon Pesto, parmesan tomatoes
Black bean quesadillas
Grilled Cheese, vegetable soup

February 5, 2010

Hilarious People Sayings

From this fun and random site - shared with me by my brother.

February 2, 2010

Baths, Nice People, and Haircuts

This week's Three Beautiful Things:

1. Bathing the boys together. It's still a little tough, because I have to hold onto the little boy with both hands, but it's a time-saver, and they both enjoy it. Actually, they both belly-laugh the entire time. It's exhausting but so worth it.

2. The man who takes my money at the parking lot. He smiles and says "have a nice day!" like he really means it.

3. My hairdresser asks me what I'm doing on the weekend. I tell her that sitting in her chair, relaxing and reading silly magazines while she cuts and colors my hair, is definitely a highlight.


*Images from NY Times

It's back! This show confuses the heck out of me, but I enjoy it immensely nonetheless. I am so looking forward to the last season. It starts tonight! Will you be watching?

Article from NY Times about the new season.

February 1, 2010

Menu of the Week

*Beef Stew - image from Cooking Light

Hm. I haven't written out my menu yet. Thought I'd try to make it up real quick. Didn't go to the grocery store this weekend either, so we'll be making do with what we already have. Let's see...

Monday - Leftovers! Oh how I love leftovers, especially on a Monday night. We have sausage/white beans, burgers, some happy pasta...

Tuesday - Pancakes, bacon, and fruit salad. (Breakfast for dinner, and this is leftovers too! I am on a roll...)

Wednesday - Basic Beef Stew with Carrots and Mushrooms - Would you believe this is leftover too?

Thursday - Okay, I guess I have to cook something. Skillet ziti with vegetables, salad.

Friday - By popular request: pierogies, kielbasa, and cinnamon apples


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