Felt Yummies

When my coworker, Veronica, invited us to her little girl's 3rd birthday party, I started to think about what we should get her. It's not very often, being this far away from family and friends out west, that we are invited to such events (though now that I think of it, we've been invited to two other birthdays for tots in the next couple weeks...so fun!)
Sure, there's the always cute, fun go-to outfit from BabyGap or Old Navy, but on a student budget I just couldn't find the extra cash.

Then I remembered (though in all honesty my craft basket is never far from my mind) my felt stash left over from Christmastime. It has been dying to be created into something.

I started with the cookies, because I've made them before and they are super easy. The chocolate cake and berry pie were a little more complicated since I made them up as I went. The adults were much more impressed than the kids were, but I'm still hoping Marlowe with enjoy playing with her felt baked goods.

If anyone out there is interested, I'd be happy to post some patterns and instructions later.

Winter Beach Retreat - Bucket List

I promise to not drag out the posts about our recent vacation too long. There will only be one or two more after this. BUT this is the BIG one...

When I was a little girl I wanted to be a marine biologist when I grew up. After my first trip to SeaWorld, that changed to marine mammal handler. I have always loved the ocean and its wildlife, especially dolphins and whales. I used to want a Wyland-esque mural painted in my home and oogled the bronze statues in his galleries wherever I could find them. I don't quite know how to explain it, but I think any dolphin lover understands. There is something almost magical about them. I used to sit on the beach in Newport and watch the dorsal fins bisecting the waves up and down the beach for hours. Once, in between dives on a scuba boat where I was experiencing worse than normal sea sickness, a pod of spinner dolphins started playing in our wake and I immediately felt better just watching them. Glorious distraction.

Swimming with dolphins has been on my bucket list for-e-ver. So when we walked to Ocean World for our complimentary day of watching the marine life shows in Spanish and the Captain suggested that I do the dolphin swim, I was beyond ecstatic!

It started with an anxious wait and a really cold shower. Then we sat through a quick "where you can and cannot touch the dolphins" lecture and a long, round about walk to the tank where I met Chiquita and Cicero, two beautiful bottlenose dolphins. The Captain found a perch to take photos from while I had my first in-the-water dolphin experience. 

We clapped with them, danced with them, pet their backs and underbellies. We held onto their dorsals while the swam. They kissed us on the cheek and the lips! Those flirty dolphins. We fed them a fish after they swam it to us in their mouths.  They jumped over us from behind. Oh the tricks they can do. Thrilling!

I got to live out my fantasy of being a 'marine mammal handler' as they pushed me across the pool, each with one of my feet on their nose. It was truly a dream come true, as I am sure you can tell by my face. You can't fake that kind of pure joy!

Thanks hun, for helping me realize a dream! Oh, and my mom said to give you a hug from her for that,  too, so don't let me forget!

Pinterest Projects Pending

I'm in the midst of planning a baby shower for a couple friends who are both having girls, so we opted for a bundle of joy (get it? like when you put multiple things together?? hah!) and combining. Don't tell anyone, but I've seriously depleted my project budget. Maybe even over spent a little. Luckily the Captain has softened up a little and isn't giving me too much grief about spending my fun money for May. I am having so much fun paper crafting with pink, but I am also yearning for a full month's fun money for other projects too. Last Saturday (after tripping down the stairs on the subway) I allowed myself to puruse one of my favorite local fabric stores Fullton Street Fabrics and, let me tell you, the wheels were turning... (so sorry for the poor quality photos.)

1. You're eyes are not playing tricks, that does in fact say 2yds/$1.00 for various lace trims. Thinking about this project.
2. Some sort of Suiting blend, may not be the best quality, but for $4/yd I think I can justify a pencil skirt that may or may not last until the end of time. Thinking about this project.
3. When I was working on our ward Harvest Party, I looked everywhere for burlap. The only affordable kind I could find was at Home Depot and it was SO dirty and moldy and smelly. I was embarrased to even use it, but I did (sorry friends!). Think of this and this project.
4. $5 stretch denim. Oh the possibilities. I'm not even going to get started, but maybe I'll just think about making a friend for the whale.

 5. Oil cloth. I didn't get the price on these, but based on the trends, you know it's gonna be cheap. Thinking of these, these, and making a few of these.
6. The priciest price point in the joint. They've got some fun decorator fabrics. I mean, they probably aren't designer, but there are still some great options for pennies on the dollar compared to other places.

So much fun to be had I can't stand it!

Not your conventional St. Patty's day celebration

If you ever find yourself in the Bensonhurst area of Brooklyn, you must head over to 86 Chinese Restaurant. It's on 86th Street East of 20th Ave. By far the best Chinese food I have ever had, and with a dad who loves all things Chinese who served as a missionary for two years in Taiwan, along with two of my brothers, I've eaten a lot of Chinese food.

It's helpful to go with a few Chinese friends to help you order if you can't read or speak Chinese, because you would probably never know that the Pork Chops with Peking sauce would be the most amazing thing you've ever tasted (somewhat akin to sweet and sour pork). You may not know that the green beans are surprisingly good or that egg drop soup is a dish that only Americans order. And you probably wouldn't be able to figure out the receipt, other than the grand total, but you wouldn't be disappointed because where else can you get a table full of food, feed 10 adults beyond satisfaction  and have leftovers for under $130.00?

***** $

Bump Grab launches it's first deal

My good friends over at Bump Grab have launched their first Deal of the Day. Head on over and check it out! And while you're at it, check out their new blog too.

Greetings from paradise!

After a long night of island food poisoning, I'm enjoying a day with the hubs on the aptly named Serenity Beach. More on this vacay later.

goop inspiration

I have been a long-time fan of Gwyneth. Maybe it started with Emma, maybe with Sliding Doors, maybe it was rekindled when I saw her get teary while cooking with Ellen. Regardless, I pretty much love the woman. Then I found goop, Gwyneth's website. It's like I get to stalk her without a restraining order. I love her style. But sometimes the price tag is, how do you say, a little too hollywood.

Here she is in what she calls, a seasonal alternative to the black cocktail dress. Love it. And I love the orange/coral. If you click the "get the look" link,  she also highlights this Vanessa Bruno Athe crepe dress in the same color. So for almost $500, you can get the look too! Or...

 You can head over to Simplicity.com and grab this $1.99 + shipping Sew Simple pattern, find some orange crepe at one of the bazillion fabric stores in Midtown and get the look for under $20.  Of course, the pattern will take some re-working (i.e., change the sleeve and lower the hemline), but that's my kind of fashion.

I was going to save this post for after I actually finish the dress, but in all honesty, I don't even know when that will happen. Would that I could have it finished for our little island getaway. Can't you just picture that little coral number trapsing down a white sand beach?