I will continue to celebrate motherhood. So if breasts, birth, dilation and mother's milk makes you uncomfortable please consider yourself warned.
Follow at your own risk. You'll find the follow button at the bottom of the side bar.

Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Miss Me??

Sorry I have not been posting. Our little Lady has not been feeling well. I have been busy wiping her nose on the hem of my shirt (disgusting, I know) and terrorizing her with nasal spray. I have also been loading Pedialyte into a spray bottle in a hope to make it more appealing. Do other kids actually drink this suff? Both of mine would rather slip into a state of dehydration. I have tried it all... unflavored, grape, fruit mix, chilled, dilluted, room temperature, cup and bottle. Lady is still not buying it. So until I learn to morph my breast milk into Pedialyte she is uninterested. I just hope my body is listening to her snotty gurgle and increases my output. There is an unanticipated sick child bonus. My little wild thing has been a cuddle bug. I am trying to stock up on her sick baby lovings while I can. I am sure she will be ducking my kisses and wriggling out of my hugs again in no time!!

Thursday, December 25, 2008

Happy Holidays

This is my favorite Christmas moment. Both my daughters played in the flour. Then Big Sis and I baked the cookies and had a flour fight while Little Sis took a nap. She woke up just in time to join us for a warm cookie snack. I don't know which was brighter, my oldest daughter's smile or the morning light. I hope your holiday season is full of sweet cookie moments like this!!!
P.S: Thanks Aunt G for the adorable Sweets For Santa set. Santa must have liked it too because he left the girls just what they wanted!!
PhotoStory Friday
Hosted by Cecily and MamaGeek

Monday, December 22, 2008

Push Prize! SO ME!

When I was pregnant there was a lot of talk about Push Prizes for mothers. The debate was over whether mother's should get a push prize for popping out a baby? Pregnant mothers gasped in shock, "My healthy child is the true gift. She is the prize". My response, "NOT ME!! I'll take the prize too". Hubby and I both have the blessing but I have a mangled abdomen and a tilted uterus. Now does that sound fair? Are we really even?
So what is the perfect push prize? It really depends on the mom but it does not have to be expensive. Keep your diamonds. After the birth of our first daughter I just wanted food. Hubby brought me dinner to the hospital. It was steamed crab. He cracked it and fed it to me by hand. Then he sliced open large strawberries and sandwiched them together with marshmallow cream. Despite the pain medication and the hospital ambience it was worth a million candlelit dinners in swank restraunts. It is still in my top five of most romantic moments of all time.
So a self sacrificing mother who expects nothing but her post birth glow? Well that really is NOT me!! I will not be hopping up to cook dinner just hours post baby. Nope, I will be propped back in bed waiting to be hand fed. That is soooo me!! Am I spoiled? Absolutely, I don't mind fessing up to it after enduring hours of labor and pushing drug free just to be wheeled into an emergency c-section, doped beyond consciousness then stapled back together like Frankenstein.
But here is the thing... let's not call it a push prize because that belittles the whole process. Besides what about the other mother's like me who had cesareans. Am I ineligible for a push prize just because my internal slip and slide malfunctioned? Then there are the adopted children that find their way into their mother's arms via adoption. I think they are just as deserving of a "push" prize. And then again maybe push prize is fitting. As mothers we all push, pull and fight for our right to be mothers regardless of how we accomplish it. "Push" prizes are the celebration of the quest. I think it is also a great start and tradition for first time mothers. Mothers have a tendency to give and self sacrifice with total disregard for themselves. By accepting push prizes we start motherhood with the realization that it is okay to occasionally reward yourself and indulge in a world outside of diaper cream and booties. This post was inspired by "Not Me Monday". Just click on the link below to join in...

Friday, December 19, 2008

Fairy Photo Tip

So how do you score a picture of a toddler sleeping in full fairy costume?? Be warned the answer may spoil all the warm fuzzies you get when seeing this magical photo...
YOU POKE HER WITH A STICK!! She isn't sleeping folks she is playing dead. This photo was taken right after a massive dual that I won. TWO POINTS FOR MOM!! Rest assured she got me back in round two with a semi-fatal wound to the thigh. My motto...All is fair in love, war and photography.

Thank you to Jania's Photo Enhancements for transporting her from a sheet in the front yard to a magical fairy garden. I adore doing my own photo editing but some photographs were meant for the masters.
PhotoStory Friday
Hosted by Cecily and MamaGeek

Thursday, December 18, 2008


I hope that my daughter's grow up to be strong, smart and confident women. I want them to know that sometimes a frog is just a frog no matter how many kisses he receives.

I adore this ACEO print by Duda Daze, "Shaken, Not Kissed". I think I need one for each daughter to save for their dating years. I will have them carry one as a reminder not to waste energy on trying to turn frogs into men. You can pick one up for yourself and check out her other art by visiting The Duda Daze Etsy store,

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Pregnancy Pangs

When both my daughters were born I held them in my arms, loved them, cuddled them and still missed them. For nine months we were so close. Their births left me feeling a little empty. During my pregnancies I knew they were always close and safe inside of me. I will always treasure that special time and still occasionally long for it. I never would have guessed that I would miss being fifty pounds heavier, nauseous and full of internal movement.
Nothing else I have ever done in my life has been as humbling and empowering as my pregnancies and I miss it.
So, How do you get over the pregnancy pangs? I haven't yet. I still miss them but I still sneak in and photograph my daughters sleeping. My oldest is five and to see her curled in sleep makes the ultrasound feel like a second a go. Those moments fill my heart, if not my womb and that is enough.
Perhaps that is why I am so drawn to these beautiful necklaces. by Birth Designs . If you love these powerful yet dainty necklaces as much as I do you can find them on Etsy, http://www.etsy.com/shop.php?user_id=76850
I think they would also make beautiful gifts of appreciation for surrogates and birth mothers.
I am in awe of every woman that makes amazing sacrifices so that children find their way to the parents that are anxiously waiting to love, treasure and adore them. My prayers are also with the mothers still waiting for their children. I hope that your dream of motherhood is soon be realized.
Today is WORKS FOR ME WEDNESDAY join in and link up @

Monday, December 15, 2008

Not Me Monday

Not Me Monday hosted by http://www.mycharmingkids.net/ ! Please come join in on the fun.

I did not let the baby dip her pretty do in a rain puddle while I snapped pictures. I did not let both princesses flop, roll and crawl in the muddy water like little piglets. I did not secretly wish for snow while playing in paradise. That would be ungrateful and I do NOT ever take things for granted. I am not so spoiled that I can play on a stunning beach and wish for Oklahoma. Who in their right mind would do that? I also did not see this great picture of me and my happy daughters and think first, "Man my roots look so bad!". I am not that vain. I saw only their smiling faces and did not give my imperfections a second thought. I also did NOT crop my bottom out. For vanities sake! I am over all those silly insecurities. Enjoy the pics, please disregard my roots.

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Unique Custom Gifts for Charity

Unique jewelry does not have to cost a fortune. There are several talented artisans that sell on Etsy who can custom create unique pieces within most budgets. I chose Junk Posse for this feature because this artisan is as generous as she is talented. Browse through her store and you will find creations benefiting various charitable organizations. I was also touched by her emphasis on celebrating adoption from all countries. The pictured bracelet is A fine silver 7 inch Bracelet with the Chinese words "Adopted with Love" on the front. 25% of the purchase price from this bracelet will be donated to a Family Adopting from China! You can find her shop on Etsy or visit her blog, http://junkposse.blogspot.com/
Here are a list of the other charitable organization she helps through her amazing talent..
Now I Lay Me Down to Sleep Foundation gently provides a helping hand and a healing heart. For families overcome by grief and pain, the idea of photographing their baby may not immediately occur to them. Offering gentle and beautiful photography services in a compassionate and sensitive manner. They allow families to honor and cherish their babies, and share the spirits of their lives.
AHOPE for Children is a non-profit organization whose mission is to serve the children of Ethiopia, with a primary emphasis on caring for orphans infected with HIV.
Nest- A non profit organization dedicated to changing the lives of women & Children.Worldwide Orphan Foundation- A non profit organization that helps to transform the lives of orphaned Children.

A separate group of amazing women have joined forces for similar causes in the REBEL FOR A CAUSE RAFFLE AWAY. Today is the last day to make your donation and enter to win a massively monstrous Canon Digital Rebel XSi prize package. Proceeds will go to String of Pearls, a beautiful ministry that offers a nurturing and safe place for families as they navigate the path following a fatal prenatal diagnosis that will result in the death of their baby prior to, or shortly after birth. String of Pearls provides guidance, compassion and practical suggestions as plans to honor the life of pre-born babies are crafted.
Proceeds will also go to benefit No Hands But Ours. No Hands But Ours is a China adoption resource site, specific to special needs adoption. It was created to provide information, encouragement and support for families of the children who wait and for those who wait no more. It is their hope that God would use this organization to encourage and equip ordinary people to do an extraordinary thing in the life of a special needs orphan, to give the gift every child needs and deserves...a family.
The Elison Project helps to provide grants to families adopting special needs children from China, and collaborates with No Hands But Ours. Proceeds of this Raffle-Way will allow families to make an incredible difference in the life of a child. Your donation will help to bring His children home.
Here is the link for more information, a look at a ton of fabulous prizes & to purchase tickets:
**Raffle tickets can also be purchased as gifts.

Friday, December 12, 2008


Dear UPS,
The results are in, cardboard is still NOT waterproof. Thank you for including our Christmas package in your shipping experiment. The entire box and contents were thoroughly soaked. I am very impressed. I am so honored that after operating since 1907 you chose our Christmas gifts to prove once and for all that cardboard is not waterproof. It appears that when set in standing water the cardboard will actually absorb the puddle. It was also so kind of the UPS carrier to hold the pieces of wet box together just to make it to my door in as few pieces as possible. Your training schedule must be very vigorous because he was able to drop the wet box on my step, ring the bell and bound back in the truck before I could even open the door and thank him for such a wet delivery.
In all fairness I have to give a shout out to ToysRus for being so accommodating and understanding. I am thrilled that I get to wait approximately eight days for UPS to pick the package back up. It would be so boring leaving the house and enjoying the tropical climate. My children would much rather wait around here for eight days. I would like to add an extra special thank you for the refund that we will be arriving sometime after the pick-up. The baby loves cold hard cash and hates toys and books anyway. Your lightning speed and customer service truly is astounding. Thank you both for being a part of our holiday season festivities.
Sincerely, Jen

Wednesday, December 10, 2008


I am pairing up with Creative Momma for my first ever blog give away. So please visit her site for the scoop and enter to win a custom tummy time tutu and portrait pacifier!! Our exclusive tummy time tutus are not just for infants. My toddler calls her tummy time her playground tutu. She loves it because she can jump, skip and dance in glam style without all the pretty fluff getting in her way. I am happy to subsitute the pacifier for an extra flower clip if you have an older princess. Good luck to everyone! Hugs, Jen

Fake Great Pictures

(above) BEFORE

AFTER (using photobucket's free scrapbook feature)
If you are new to photography don't stress about lighting or even framing the shot. Just work on getting that priceless expression. You have one chance and thanks to digital cameras you can fake it if you fail.
(I will be describing all editing procedures available at
www.photobucket.com because it is free & fairly popular)
Most digital cameras have a high enough resolution that you can crop in fairly close even if the photograph was not originally a close up. You don't always have to crop your subject in the center. Try cropping so that your child is on the far left or far right of the frame. This works great for Christmas cards and business cards. Or crop the photo so only part of your child's face is included, as shown on the Christmas card.
If you increase the contrast your photograph will take on a more bold and artistic look. Just slide the contrast bar up. This will sometimes make the colors too bold for your taste. For a more subtle effect slightly decrease the color saturation after you increase the contrast. Don't be afraid to play around. Messing with the brighten, saturation and contrast bars produce the most interesting and effective results.
Cropping is the easiest solution.
increase the contrast.
if the photo background is already brighter than the subject then bump up the contrast and the subject will jump out and the background will fade away
If the background is darker than the subject increase the saturation and slightly decrease the brightness for a similar effect.
crop and use the grayscale or sepia feature to tone down everything from busy backgrounds to clashing outfits
The soften effect, under effects, in photo shop editing, will mask the blur in most images. It can make things like out of focus subjects and solar flares look intentional. It is also a very magical touch for newborn portraits and fairy princesses.
A vignette works great at hiding unwanted elements around the pictures edges. It is under decorate, frames and then matte/vignette. Stick with black or white for a more classic look.
This also adds a nice dramatic touch to a plain photograph.
Free photo sharing sites can decrease the photograph's resolution so keep an extra copy.
Join in sharing more great tips at www.rocksinmydryer.net
Works For Me!!!!

Monday, December 8, 2008

The Kegel Flunky, Not me

My New Year's Resolution is NOT to simply master my bodily functions. I am a grown woman, master of all, who does NOT spring leaks of ANY kind. Therefore, my resolution will be grand and of epic proportions, awe inspiring. My New Year's Resolution will NOT simply be to stop peeing on myself every time I sneeze. After all, I do NOT do that.
The featured print by artist, Nicole Sharp, did NOT remind me of myself. When I read the description,
"Just call me Betty f@#%ing Crocker..".
I did NOT laugh so hard I nearly peed my pants. Please remember I am above that. Besides not having control of my bladder would make blogging dangerous. I would have to avoid funny posts altogether or risk electrocution. I am NOT so addicted to blogs like Secrets in the Sauce and Idabel Oklahoma that I am actually willing to risk electrocution.
Join in on not me Monday by clicking here..

You can find Nicole on Etsy at
The great news is she says, "I love to do trades - just convo me. The worst I ever say is no (and I usually don't say that), and even then I say it nicely. I am interested in jewelry, home goods, zines, felt objects, little girl's clothes, toys, art, and just about everything else. I hope to hear from you!". I love that!! Her work is fun and gorgeous. I hope you visit her shop because it was so hard for me to choose just two. Or just blog on over and tell her how amazing she is..

Saturday, December 6, 2008


There is not a wife alive who has never thought, if ever so briefly, where to hide her hubby's body. Now if you are gasping in horror and praising the Lord that you obviously have a better husband than mine you are either…..
A. A newlywed
B. Living in Denial
C. Married to a Saint
(If you are one of the few that answered C please don't rub it in. Husband's lives across the globe may depend on it and the last thing you want is hundreds of new widows chasing after your man.)
Speaking of saintly husbands, have you heard of the Mother Letter Project?
This husband is compiling letters from mothers across the globe to give to his wife as a gift for Christmas. Many women are all secretly thinking and hoping this is their husband. I am not one of those women. I KNOW this is NOT my husband.
It gets better. Here are his own words, "Instead of purchasing Christmas this year, our family is "creating" Christmas and donating the "difference" to a small African village. To that end, I am collecting a series of open letters-the Mother Letters-for my wife's Christmas present". Now ladies, please remember this man is accepting mother letters for his wife ONLY, not dinner invitations, propositions or marriage proposals!! SHAME ON YOU!! Besides he already politely declined my request to become his second wife.
To learn more and post your own letter click here…

I retain the right to tease, exaggerate and embellish my own husband's testosterone induced bad behavior. My husband is not perfect but he is perfect for me. I don't want anyone to get the wrong idea and think I'm still on the market. So for all you guys who have been searching for a leaking mommy with two kids, dry skin and a lack of will power to shave, I am NOT your girl. Please don't be too disappointed. There are many other sleep deprived, oatmeal crusted moms that would love to meet you. No I will NOT introduce you. You will just have to borrow your niece and hit up playgroup like all the other single guys.

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Works for Me!!

For more survival, tips, recipes and just plain fun!!I am not the mother I thought I would be. I am so off the path that I am not even headed in my original direction.
Here is to the back roads, dead-ends and collisions that qualify motherhood for an extreme sport!!
10. Share Baby Jesus or I'll throw him in the trash!!
9. No, Santa is not allergic to peanut butter.
8. Can you lift me up? I can't reach the spaghetti on the ceiling.
7. Yes, I can see she ate the crayons!! NOW will you flush the toilet?
6. No. Not until you finish your Cheetos.
5. I have an unopened tube of nipple cream. It's yours, just say the word.
4. Don't put Barbie's foot in my belly button.
3. Don't toilet paper the cat.
2. Well, I was feeling fancy so I shaved PAST the knee today!!!
1. I ADORE being a sleep deprived, never potty alone, stay at home mom!!

I will keep this list so that when my daughter's have children of there own I can reference it, hold my tongue and remind myself that making mistakes and taking wrong turns can be the most precious part of motherhood.

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Merry Sitsmas

Around this time last year our Lady Baby was warming up, stretching and gearing for an early race to the finish. I was politely declining prebirth cervix checks and getting my toenails painted and stir-up ready. Lady Rew was decorating the house and looking forward to partying down with her new little sis. She was also making sure I knew that if the baby didn't have girly parts that we would have to make a late night run to Wal-mart and pick some up!! Hubby was uncomfortably trying to explain that Wal-mart didn't have an aisle for that. I hope your Holidays are equally full of silliness, laughs and love.
Today this fun, supportive blog is giving away prizes and working hard to spread the Cheer. Way to go Secret in the Sauce!!! So Merry Sitsmas to all and thank you!!

Photo Tip: Create your own present tags and greeting cards with Photobucket's free Scrapbook feature!! The best part is that you can upload the final design to Vista Print and take advantage of their free specials on calenders, cards and more.

My favorite blog so far on my very first Merry SITSmas tour.. Fresh Mommy. I dig the name and her entire blog is gorgeous!!

And last day to vote on this posh pet photos. Animal rescue and dogs in clothes, does it get any better????

Overwhelmed, Depressed & Loved

This post is in honor of a very special friend who needs to know that she is not alone. I want her and all mothers to know that being overwhelmed, depressed and just plain frazzled happens to the best of us. Please feel free to post your own words of encouragement, understanding and support.
Dear Princess,
Please know that I am here for you and that all you have to do is ask. I have not forgotten your acts of kindness. I am here whenever you are ready. In the short time I have known you you have shown me glimpses of your strength, loyalty and generous spirit. I hope you rediscover all the amazing qualities that make you such an important and essential part of this world. I also hope you find the strength and support to not just take another step but skip with joy.
Mothers are expected to be selfless, tireless and full of unending love and devotion. Some of us give until there is just nothing left to give. It happens to the best, brightest and most intelligent mothers. Even high profile mothers from Sylvia Plath to Brooke Shields have crumbled under the weight of it all. Depression is timeless and mothers are not exempt. Depression can appear and extend long past Postpartum. Hugs, Jen
This passage from Eat Pray Love by Elizabeth Gilbert really touched me,
"I don't think a woman in the whole history of my family had ever done that before, had ever sat down in the middle of the road like that and said, in the middle of her life, "I cannot walk another step further-somebody has to help me." It wouldn't have served those women to have stopped walking. Nobody would have, or could have helped them. The only thing that would've happened was they and their families would have starved. I couldn't stop thinking about those women."
I can't stop thinking about these women either. Women are stumbling, pausing, stopping and sometimes there is still nobody to help.

Monday, December 1, 2008

Not Me Monday

I've been inspired to join in on Not Me Monday. I think it is a brilliant idea. So here is a little humor, a dose of brutal honesty and a taste of tough self love. Be sure to visit the original Not Me Master, McKMamma, http://www.mycharmingkids.net/
I did NOT think of 101 ways to punish my husband for having the audacity to sleep peacefully while I was up with the baby. I most certainly did NOT actually knock him upside the head and then convince the big lug he must have been having a nightmare. I also have never stuck both feet right in the middle of his back and pushed him out of bed. I then did NOT proceed to act startled, loving and concerned , " LOVE?! Are you okay? You just fell out of bed!!". No that was NOT me. Because I am a peaceful, loving wife who adores her husband all the time. I am NOT an occasionally bitter, sleep deprived housewife prone to moments of weakness and mistreating her husband. And by the way, my husband is NOT the most amazing, loving, fun and free spirited man I could ever ask for who also happens to now have a very sore back and slight concussion.
I also did not just send hubby for boxed cake mix for our daughter's very first Birthday even though I made our first daughter's carrot cake from scratch naturally sweetened with apple juice and cream cheese icing. Nope..IT WAS NOT ME!!
Dig the overbite?? You can see more cute pet pics,
courtesty of Picture the Moment Photography, at www.arftulsa.blogspot.com

Sunday, November 30, 2008

Photographing Newborns Tips from Mommy

Nothing beats a professional photographer but you can still take great sleeping newborn portraits of your own children in between sessions. These are some things I have learned...
First things first,
1. Purchase solid sheets for the baby's bedding, white or black.
(choose the color that contrasts the most with your baby's skin tone)
2. Solid sheets on your own bed or floor will also make a great backdrop
3. Place the crib where it gets indirect light at some point throughout the day.
(Soft morning light is perfect but I also love the yellow glow right before sunset.)
4. Put the baby to sleep just like normal and keep an eye out for the perfect light or moment.
When taking your pictures you do not need a fancy camera or a studio. The pictures shown were taken with a basic point and shoot. The tricks are..
Shoot without a flash
use your portrait setting (the icon usually with people on it)
macro setting ON (typically a flower icon)
use your zoom or get close, fill the frame and focus on just her lips or toes
choose the right angle (capture those long lashes by shooting from the side and slightly above)
Try, try and try again, with digital you can take hundreds at no extra cost
you can also edit with photobucket for free..fade the background out by sliding the contrast bar & adjusting the brightness (start first with black and white copies so you don't also have to adjust the color saturation)

Saturday, November 29, 2008

Breastfeeding Christmas Tree Ornament

Sculptures by Artist, Elizabeth Bonita, are also available in similar style tree ornaments.
I can not think of a more appropriate place to display and celebrate motherhood. Each member of our family chooses their ornament each year. As we hang them we remember when and why we choose each one. I hope to add a custom created ornament from Elizabeth to our collection very soon. I will tell my youngest, "I choose this ornament because this was the last Christmas you were latched to me body and soul. I choose this ornament because being a mother to you and your sister is the greatest thing I have ever done". I really believe breastfeeding mothers created from paint, clay and wood can help show that the flesh and blood mother is just as beautiful and worthy of celebration. Thank you Elizabeth for creating such a beautiful work of art and making a bold statement by displaying such a proud mother. To see more of Elizabeth's work, visit her websites: http://ElizabethBonura.etsy.com and www.WeddingSculptures.com .

Friday, November 28, 2008

Breastfeeding in my Imagination

My second daughter is a busy baby. She fights nursing, wiggles, squirms and refuses to be discreet. Unlike my first she refuses to be covered. Nursing her has taught me that any place can become a private beach. I relax look at her and forget about the rest of the world. I focus on her smirking face, her ornery eyes and I stop worrying about the uncomfortable glances and scowling faces. I love this painting by Emily Balivet because whether I have the luxury of nursing in a comfortable nursing room, the passenger side of a car or a crowded store I am always nursing her on a deserted beach in my imagination. I hope you find that same peace wherever you choose to nurse from a bathroom stall to the food court. I hope that the world fades away and there is nothing but you and your adoring child.

The featured painting is titled "The Lap" by Emily Balivet and available on Etsy or visit
Emily has been designing and selling her work worldwide for over 15 years. She is entirely self taught and her artistic talents extends to a wide range of creations from clothing to toys and everything between.

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Locked, Loaded & Lactating

When hubby gets too sassy I threaten to squirt him with breast milk, one quick squeeze. A shot to the eye, perhaps the ear. Despite military training and two tours in Iraq just the threat of my milky spray sends him running.
I try to remind hubby that the milk on his cereal is expressed from a cow's breast. This is an ongoing debate we have. He tries to distance his milk from the nipple with words like udders and pasteurization. So I have offered to have my milk pasteurized . Then will I be cleaner than a cow? Worthy of consumption? He shelves the Wheaties and reaches for an orange.
** I have a wonderful supportive husband who despite his fear of breast milk nurtured me and cared for me during the recovery of my emergency cesarean, uterine infection and mastitis. We manage to live happily in a constant state of debate by always being half serious and 100% in-love

I loved how bold and powerful the featured painting is. There is nothing apologetic or discreet. It is vivid and striking. I was more than a little shocked when I realized this moment was so realistically and powerfully portrayed by male artist, Paul Richmond. His own description says it best, " This painting represents the female influences that were an integral part of my early development. Without knowing of the social ramifications, I looked to women as providing a role model for shaping the way I related to the world around me. The love and nurturing that I felt from the females in my life allowed me to feel safe and at home with who I was".

To top it off his talent he also has a great sense of humor that really comes through in his other work. I enjoyed learning about Paul's inspiration and life as much as I enjoyed looking at his art. He exudes a certain confidence and unapologetic honesty that I struggle to embrace as a mother. I am often offering explanations for why my daughter is mismatched, my dishes are undone and why my laundry takes a back seat to Jenga marathons. Maybe one day I will learn to say, "This is just the mom I am and that is enough".
If you would like to learn more about Paul Richmond and his work please visit..

Monday, November 24, 2008

Four babies, does it get any cuter?

Congrats to our friend Gabriella Wright of Red Bird Photography for capturing a great photo of FOUR baby blessings!!
She has been honored with a merit from Professional Photographers of Hawaii Quarterly Print Competition!!


This self reflection and account of my daughter's birth was triggered and inspired by Sarah Kiser's painting, Some Enchanted Eating, pictured above.

My first daughter was born by emergency c-section, rushed, agitated but healthy in appearance. Once she was tucked in the nursery and my morphine high was wearing off we learned her heart rate was 240 and rising. They had her in the regular nursery hooked to a heart monitor awaiting transport to their Neonatal Intensive Care Unit. She was crying with an intensity that increased the beat of her already too fast heart. I tried to nurse her but my tasteful ballet pink robe was getting in the way, the sash tangling in all the cords and wires. Fed up and without hesitation I stripped down to the waist . I vaguely remember over a dozen shocked faces and the nurses rushing to plant themselves between me and an audience of scowling faces. They were expecting clean, shining and post birth perfect babies. Instead they got me, breastfeeding behind glass like a gorilla in a zoo.
I was haggard, graceless, lit by fluorescent light and terrified but I will always remember that moment with the perfect indirect light glow, slightly out of focus with soft edges. There was only my daughter pressed against me and the sound of her heart beeping a little slower with each dry suckle.
It was the exact moment I lost my last shred of modesty and learned my body was magic.

"I hope that through my paintings I can make it clear that breastfeeding is natural, wonderful, beautiful and completely normal and beyond that, it is a magical experience for both the mother and baby"

Sarah Kiser http://www.sarahkiser.net/

The featured painting is available in a dainty 2 1/2" x 3 1/2" print, perfect for displaying in a series or tucking in your diaper bag. I wish I had had it then to gaze at it when I needed to be reminded that I am enchanting, natural and full of magic.

Sunday, November 23, 2008


Thank you for the artists who choose to give motherhood the proper presentation it deserves. Thank you for presenting mothering as an art worthy of display and not intended to be tucked away. These beautiful images captured my attention and I just can't help sharing them with you. I hope to share a little something special about each artist with you this week as well as a little something about my favorite mommy things and mommy moments.

I think there is a void in all art forms that needs to filled with mother as a verb not a noun. Often the subject is dismissed as being too sentimental, insignificant or controversial yet every person is a mother or has one.

Friday, November 21, 2008

Make Messes Not War

Photo entry

I read the chapter on introducing solids in my mommy manual but this is NOT what I had in mind!
"Be sure to check out http://www.iheartfaces.com/ to see all the other beautiful faces that have been entered into the contest!"

The Gift of Messes

There are many gifts you can custom create yourself and you don't have to be Martha Stewart to pull it off. For children I suggest giving the gift of messes. My daughter's personal favorites are bath slime and finger foam. Here is the recipe card. Your child and tub will both get a good clean scrub while your child plays. Another bonus is that if you have the camera ready while she messes you will also score a one of a kind gift grandparents are sure to treasure.
Strapped for time and want a unique gift out of your creative league? Handmade and custom created items don't have to break the bank. Often you can commission a designer or artisan for a custom item equivalent to or less than department store prices. Etsy has a unique feature called Alchemy where you can post a request and artisans will fight for the honor of making your dreams come true.
Please feel free to print the recipe on card stock and attach it to a gift bucket or craft box full of the necessary supplies. Just click on the recipe card to enlarge it.

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Loving Paradise but Missing Oklahoma

I may be in Hawaii but my heart is still in Oklahoma. This blog always reminds me of home, http://todayinidabeloklahoma.blogspot.com . Whether you are from Hawaii or Italy you have got to blog on over and see what you're missing. Be prepared this blog serves up a heavy dose of sarcasm Oklahoma style. It also might be the last shred of documented proof that smart rednecks do exist.
Why in the world would I miss Oklahoma when I have paradise?
Well Lake Wister doesn't trump the ocean but Hawaii has SPAM on the McDonald's breakfast menu? SPAM?! For breakfast!! Every Sooner worth her salt knows a girl needs bacon, eggs, fried potatoes and biscuits all smothered in gravy to maintain a girlish figure. My Grandpa Roscoe swore bacon grease gravy induced early puberty and yes my grandfather really was named Roscoe and I have a real live Uncle Bubba.
Happy Holidays from Hawaii and a special thank you to the women of Idabel for reminding me of home.

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

The Gift of Beauty

I have decided to give everyone on my list handmade creations. I already have my eye on some stunning one of a kind creations for my family and friends. Check out my Christmas List for a sneak peak. Everything is beautiful from gourmet fudge to bath soaps. These gifts are sure to please. I am really excited about the chennile ice cream cones for my imaginative princess and the wooden rattle for the baby. Don't you wish you were on my list?

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

My Daughter's Designs

My daughter not only picks her own clothes she designs them. For family portraits she designed her and her sisters tutu and insisted we continue with a very dramatic red and black theme. Like a true Diva she insists on being the only princess in the shot and is always absent from group pics. Where was she? Coaching us from the sidelines and keeping Grandma company. Maybe someday we will score a true family portrait. Thank you Gabi for capturing this moment with our youngest. Luckily our Diva is always willing to pose solo so I was able to photograph her in her favorite hat.

TracyLacy Trinkets shares my daughter's love for bold and bright contrasts and composed a gallery of stunning red and black images. No gallery is complete without a tutu and I am thrilled to see ours on her beautiful list.... http://www.etsy.com/treasury_list.php?room_id=21697

Cute TuTu Pics

There is just something very special about a baby in a tutu. The owner of Catherine Lough Designs put together a collection of tutu cute images on Etsy and I am so proud she featured our youngest princess. Please check it out and see all the little princesses @

Sunday, November 16, 2008

My New Favorite Thing

Moons Harvest Bath Cupcakes on Etsy
If you are on my Christmas list odds are you will be scoring one of these adorable cupcake bath bombs. These delicious looking treats look good enough to eat. I am sending these to all my family and friends with LUSH addictions. Everyone on my list will be getting handmade items from good enough to eat bath products to real edible homemade blondies and chocolate treats all from Etsy. Don't you wish you were on my list?? Here is the link...


Saturday, November 15, 2008

Christmas Couture for Holiday Divas

I just have to share these Christmas pictures of my little princess!!

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Christmas Fairies

These great pics of my Snow Fairy Set and Holly Fairy Set were sent to me courtesy of Allyson from Picture the Moment Photography. Allyson really is amazing and I loved making these sets for her holiday portrait sessions. I am always so excited to see my designs on such pretty princesses and in the hands of talented photographers. Thank you to the special fairies who brought these costumes to life!!

Monday, November 10, 2008

Gourmet Candy

I am not above bribing my daughter with candy. There! I admit it. I would say you can strip me of my mother of the year award but I lost that honor years ago. If you are going to bribe your kids with candy go gorgeous, go gourmet!! This rock candy really is as stunning as it is tasty. I like it so much hubby can now bribe ME with candy!! I would take more pictures but it's already gone and it was delicious. mmmmmmmm