Wednesday, February 29, 2012

diaper bag/on the go activity for toddlers

I had a stroke of genius when I put this together for our three weeks of holiday travel as a plane/road trip activity, and it proved so useful that I've kept it in the diaper bag ever since. Perhaps I saw it somewhere else and I'm not giving proper credit, but perhaps I thought of it all on my own! Either way, it's incredibly simple, and you must do.

I pull this out at restaurants, while shopping, long car trips or pretty much anytime Scarlett is nearing break down when we are in the public eye with seemingly no escape from stares and silent judgments from strangers...ugh! But then, like magic, I resume the appearance of an emotionally stable mom with a well behaved child!

Items needed:

Place markers and paper in baggie and keep with you at all times for an emergency activity

Of note:
1. I use clementine art natural and earth friendly markers, which have very impressively lasted a long time. I was sure they were going to dry out in days, but they are great. Wash off easily, and no serious worries when the babe will inevitably put marker in mouth. We have a few of their products - modeling dough and crayons too - and love them all. Check em out at

2. I use a little notebook I found from a gift shop I can't recall, but anything would work. Recycle old computer paper by cutting in small squares and stapling together. A post-it notepad would work great too, with the added benefit of fun from the sticky backing. Scarlett loves anything 'sticker' these days.

I most recently used this when a friend and I, and our collective 3.5 children, were eating lunch at Walton's, Sandra Bullock's cafe in Austin. The kids were on the verge of a scene, but us mammas had barely taken a bite. enter magic baggie o' fun! The girls loved scribbling up the pages and putting the caps on and off the markers a hundred times. Us mammas were able to enjoy our salads and sandwiches, and, AND, AND, imagine this, have a conversation!

if you don't have something like this in your diaper bag, get it ASAP.

Or, if you have similar baggies o' fun, please share your own genius ideas! Thanks and enjoy!

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Sunday, February 26, 2012

Even babies know farts are funny

Case in point:

Tonight I was getting Scarlett ready for bed after her bath per our usual routine. While she was laying on her back and i was holding her legs up, I applied generous amounts of diaper cream to keep her tush protected and soft. I was thanked for providing such great skin care with an elephant-playing-the-tuba sounding, flip-flap-fluttering fart, effectively in the direction of my face!

We were both stunned and silent for a brief second. And then, Scarlett, looking me straight in my eyes that were burning from her flatulence, started laughing HYSTERICALLY. Guttural laughter that I've never before heard produced by her small body. Prolonged, proud laughter.

How does she know farts are funny?!

She hasn't learned from her environment yet that farts are funny. she doesn't hang around middle school boys or watch bad stand up on comedy central. And It's not like David and I go around farting...oh, wait. well, regardless, she seemed to inherently know to laugh after such an impressive toot.

But how? Is 'farts are funny' prewired into our brains? Babies do display their first smiles after passing gas...hmm. Is there scientific research about this, I wonder.

What about your child(ren)? Do they laugh at their own body bubbles?

(hopefully the answer is yes, or else i may be bordering on trashy with this post)

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Family fun time at the Austin farmer's market

Fun picnic tonight at the Austin farmer's market (wednesdays from 4-8pm in Triangle Park, at 46th and Lamar). Gorgeous night listening to live bluegrass, local farmers and vendors selling fresh produce, lots of families and kids running around.

I know there is a picture of Scarlett holding a carrot, but don't be fooled, it was only used as a vehicle to deliver hummus. The other pic with her hand in the blue corn tortilla chip bag is more accurate. I did see her try to bite the carrot at least once so I'm taking that as a step in the right direction and hoping that one day she'll eat vegetables again.

Btw, it was 85+ degrees out today! I realized that's pretty much the hottest weather I've been in in the last FIVE years. Yikes! And it's gonna be 20 degrees hotter and 10x the humidity when it really gets hot here! Oh my.

But no complaining just yet, grateful for a beautiful evening and relaxing family fun time together.

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Fat Tuesday!

All my posts are about food lately...

Probably because I'm hungry and eating all the time trying to fatten up baby2 before his/her arrival FIVE weeks from today! Omg.

Feeling the creole mardi gras vibe, i was craving a beignet today. Unfortch, I couldn't find a place with good beignet reviews, so we grabbed a fat tuesday afternoon snack of berries and waffles from Dolce Vita Cafe on our way to the park nearby. We both enjoyed it thoroughly! Perfectly crisp but also gooey and warm with sweet fresh berries.

It was a yummy substitute, but even so, I couldn't help but have a tiny wish I was eating a pillow of fluffy delicious goodness from Just For You Cafe in SF. Best beignets ever!! Go there immediately if you haven't tried these before!! Seriously, go. Now.

In other mardi gras related news, daddyD and I had a raging night of watching downton abbey and deciding on what to give up until Easter. I don't always give something up for lent, but sometimes it's nice to have a personal challenge for a lil bit, ya know? This year, D's giving up cookies and ice cream and I'm giving up Facebook. It's gonna be tough for both of us!

How was your fat tuesday? Indulge in anything good? Planning on giving anything up? Let us know!

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

eating "dinner" and austin farmer's market

my in-laws have a ranch in the hill country outside of austin. it's a full on ranch with cows and horses! pretty neat stuff for a city-girl from the north. besides relaxing trips there enjoying the country side and having babysitters grandparents so close, we also have the added perk of having lots of "dinner" in the freezer!

"dinner" was the first cow raised on their land that has now become actual dinner. dinner was born on the land, only fed grass from the land, received no antibiotics, nothing artificial, allowed to roam and play with the other cows, etc, etc...dinner lived the life, man. (he was named dinner to avoid any attachment issues for my mother-in-law raising him from a little calf. she knew he was going to be dinner might as well call a spade a spade, right?)

anyway - talk about locally sourced organic free-range lots of healthy buzz words au natural beef! pretty cool, huh? and, even better, turned out pretty darn delicious!

last sunday, i pulled out two steaks from the freezer and made our first "dinner" dinner. we don't have a grill so i used this ridiculously easy recipe where you sear the steaks on the stovetop and then broil in the oven. very quick and easy and turned out delicious. make it for valentine's day tonight!

i paired it with roasted brussel sprouts from the austin farmer's market, which have been plentiful and delicious lately. sprinkle generously with salt, pepper and olive oil and then roast at 350 for 20-30 minutes, depending on your crispiness liking. (i like em crispy!)

Happy Valentine's Day!

Friday, February 3, 2012

All by myself!

Two days ago Scarlett wouldn't budge an inch off the top of the slide unless I was holding on to her for dear life. Today, without any warning, she started zooming down all by herself. She was laughing and giggling with each slide, and then immediately back up the stairs for another ride. Scarlett was so proud of herself and thrilled with excitement. I loved it!

And, I know she's my progeny and all, but, c'mon, look at that amazing happy face! Isn't it just the best?!

Thursday, February 2, 2012


Second night in a row I've tried to make some posts without success (two about delicious meals I made that you should try and one about mommy-and-me Wednesdays). Unfortunately, the Internet in our new apartment is shoddy and I get rebuffed with the continuous circle arrow spinning for 30 mins and then an error screen!! Grrrrr!

Good thing I can stay connected and entertained with my iPhone. Phew! What would I do without it?

Been currently occupied with for baby2 name inspirations.

Ok, hopefully the hubs will take care of the Internet problem soon because we all know I'm not going to try. Instead I'll just stick with the iPhone and complain.

Here's a pic of Scarlett from last Sunday eating tacos outside on a gorgeous day. There would have been a full post about our sunday family adventure too, know the problem.

Hopefully back in action soon!