Sunday, September 30, 2012

Kids say the most truthful things

I used to be tiny skinny; not sick thin, but healthy thin. For years I was skinny. Then I got pregnant.

Now I have what I call "Mom Bod". Mom bod is a combination of love handles and belly pooch with a little extra jiggle in the thighs and arms. Before getting pregnant and experiencing morning sickness and cravings I used to think I'd be the 8 month preg lady doing yoga and going for hikes who would gain only 5 pounds and be back into normal clothes a week postpartum. HA HA!!! NOT the case!!!

Instead, I became the 8 month preg lady stopping at Arby's and Taco Bell on a whim and napping for hours on the couch. I told myself at this point that it'd be fine because I'd just lose the weight soon after the babe was born because I'd be working out and breastfeeding. Again, not the case.

THEN I figured what they say is true about it taking 9 months to put it on and another 9 to take it off, and I'd lose the weight by H's 9 month b-day...but, you guessed it, still not the case.

I was making progress between Hudson's 10th and 11th month (I told myself I HAD to lose it by his first birthday-no more excuses). I was good about hitting the gym, walking with the babe, I laid off the Butterfingers and was eating healthy...but I hit a plateau a month into it and completely lost my motivation (don't you hate when that happens?) The past few weeks I've been wishing/hoping/praaaaying for my motivation to return, which finally happened today after our little incident at the playground...
Mr. Brady and I took Hudson to his favorite park with a balloon to snap some 1st birthday pics. After pics we took H to the playground where a little boy and girl were playing, both about 5 years old. I hear them whispering and then the boy says to the girl, "Rapunzel's pregnant." The girl then yells to me, "are you pregnant?"

**************EWWWWWW OUCH!!!!!!!!****************

Gotta love the innocent honesty of children, until it comes to them being brutally honest about you!!! Mr. Brady looks at me cautiously, scoping out my emotions. My eyes say to him...This kid just called me fat! He gives me his best reassuring look. Still, I really, really want to cry...I want to go home..part of me even wants to yell at him and tell him he's a rude little boy, but somehow I muster up as much good humor as I can, smile, and simply say, "Nope." The little girl says, "I told you she's not pregnant", and the boy just shrugs and continues playing. I wince hoping he won't say anything else to further wound my pride.

I'm upset and spend the next few hours pouting and feeling sorry for myself, wanting to go to the gym.

Then I realize I WANT to go to the gym. For the first time in weeks I want to go to the gym and I want to eat a salad for dinner! I'd forgo being asked if I'm pregnant any day of the week...but I have to feel really thankful for that boy because he was keepin it real...and now my plea for motivation has been fulfilled even if it was in a less-than-pleasant way. Off to the gym to work on the ol' mom-bod!!!!!

What motivates you? xo

Friday, September 28, 2012

Fall is for...Folk Music

Music is like wine and I am a bit of a connoisseur. From a young age I've been sensitive to the fact that the right song can compliment the moment or ruin it...listening to an ever-sombre Radiohead number during a joyous moment would diminish it...or at least it would for me. Maybe that's why the changing of the seasons also brings a change to the musical genre playing in our household and while we listen to all different types of music year round, generally speaking...

Winter is for Christmas music, French oldies, and 1920's-40's songs
Spring is for electronica & glam rock
Summer is 1960's & 70's oldies
And FALL pairs so nicely with acoustic and folk music doesn't it?

Folk music+scarves & sweaters+apple cider+falling leaves=perfection!

I've been playing my Spotify FallFallFall playlist practically non-stop for the past week which I would share here if I could figure out how... This is the perfect soundtrack for all the early fall baking, crafting, and crazy-ass nesting that's been going on here in our casa. Sharsies...

Scarborough Fair: Simon and Garfunkle
Winter Birds: Ray LaMontagne
Re: Stacks: Bon Iver
God Willin' and the Creek Don't Rise: Ray LaMontagne
20 Years: The Civil Wars
Free Man in Paris: Joni Mitchell
River Man: Nick Drake
Boy With a Coin: Iron and Wine
Cocoon: The Decemberists
Luscious Life: Patrick Watson
Old Before Your Time: Ray LaMontagne
Words in the Fire: Patrick Watson
Place to Be: Nick Drake
A Case of You: Joni Mitchell
Harvest Moon: Neil Young
Devil's in the Jukebox: Ray LaMontagne
Easier: Grizzly Bear

Seriously tell me this song doesn't make your heart beat right out of your chest!???

I wanna know what you are listening to this fall and do your musical tastes change with the seasons? xo

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Dinner & a Movie

Over the past few weeks I've been dreading dinnertime because I've run out of dinner ideas...especially vegetarian ones. We've survived the summer on "rainbow scrambles" which is any veggies mixed in with hashbrowns and Tofurky brand chorizo (which is absolutely to die for), beans and rice, and vegetarian chili. Besides these and a few other veggie meals, I never know what to make which means I never manage to plan and then we end up eating out=dolla dolla bills $$$$$.

Determined to recharge my culinary creativity and stock up on some new recipes to try I spent a good 3 hours pinning away. I have enough dinner ideas now to last through the fall I am SURE, not to mention all the dessert ideas...did I mention fall is for gaining a few LBs?

Tonight Mr. Brady and I spiced things up parent-of-a-sleeping-baby-style with dinner and a movie night and I got to try out one of my new recipes. SO YUMMY Lasagna Soup-seriously not the healthiest thing I've ever eaten in my life, but probably one of the most flavorful lasagnas I've ever had thanks to the fire roasted tomatoes...and it was SOUP. mmm. I made it vegetarian style and cut some calories by replacing the sausage with a package of Morning Star Veggie Crumbles. I can only imagine how delicious this would be with real can get the recipe here.

eat me

I wish I could rave as much about the movie Snow White and the Huntsman (I love me some Kristen Stewart) but I couldn't sit through the whole thing-and ended up looking at this for the last 3/4 of the movie. (Spoonflower has got some geeeeorgeous fabric and wallpaper-but that's for another post). The hubs and I rated the movie mediocre, but the night was nevertheless a success for a couple of rather boring 33 yr old parents. Now off to read and lights out by 10:30. haha.

Sunday, September 23, 2012

Baby Chompers

4 bottom chompers

4 top chompers nom nom!
We are 2 weeks away from celebrating Hudson's first birthday and he has EIGHT teeth! Most of our friends' kids who are in the same age group have 2-4 teeth. We love how it completely changes the look of his face and makes him look so grown up! I feel like I was just taking care of a stationary 2 month old yesterday, it's gone by so quickly. Alex and I have become those parents who post too many pictures and videos of everything our kiddo does on facebook, but when your life and love revolve around this one little miracle of a person, even pictures of teeth become precious and share-worthy. Happy Sunday. xo

Saturday, September 22, 2012

Fall is for...pumpkins!

pumpkins pumpkins pumpkins
Today's blog post is about pumpkins. Nothing more. Nothing less. If pumpkins aren't your thing, you may not enjoy this one, but bear with me and whip up a batch of Downeast Maine Pumpkin Bread for your fam this weekend (although you may decide not to share it's THAT good), and I'm pretty positive I'll make you as much of a pumpkin-hugger as I've become!
My love for anything and everything pumpkin is a rather recent one. As kids my brother and I who knew juuuuust about everything, knew pumpkins had only 3 make jack-o-lanterns, to transport princesses to balls, and to make pumpkin pie which we absolutely in our book, pumpkins had only 2 practical uses. Because of this one could argue that our childhoods were a bit on the deprived side...

Besides being a fun word to say 'pump-kin', especially in Spanish (calabaza) and besides being fun to carve and yummy in pie (I've come around on that one)...pumpkin is hands down the most delicious fall food ever! Can you believe I didn't know this until last year when I first tried pumpkin bread?! Deprived much? Now I can't get enough...pumpkin pancakes, pumpkin bread, pumpkin muffins, pumpkin scones, pumpkin cupcakes, pumpkin roll, pumpkin latte, pumpkin smoothies, pumpkin seeds, pumpkin FACIALS! So in honor of The First Day of FALL I wanted to share some of our new favorite pumpkin recipes with you...enjoy!

Downeast Maine Pumpkin Bread. This is THE best pumpkin bread recipe I've found and it makes 3 loaves=sharsies!
These are pumpkin flaxseed muffins; yummy and good for you.
Yummy recipe for roasted pumpkin seeds
Making these pumpkin cupcakes for H's first b-day bash!

Cute idea and can't wait til Hudson is old enough to color one of these bad boys
With left over pumpkin puree from the bread you can make pumpkin pie smoothies! mmm

Or make a pumpkin mask with your left over pumpkin puree
Another pumpkin mask recipe

Thursday, September 20, 2012

FALL is for...getting Crafty

Ok, so I know I'm jumping the gun here using the "F" word because technically it's still 90 degrees out and there are no blazing autumn colors yet...but the days are getting shorter, the pools are closed, kids are back in school and I'm chomping at the bit for FALL to arrive. As sad as I am to see summer go I can't deny my undying LOVE for fall and all the changes it brings. Fall always turns me into the queen of domesticity. I am a mother bird feathering her nest...this year quite literally! I suddenly want to do all the things I dreaded doing all summer long...baking, cleaning, crafting, cooking, movie watching, and decorating.

Case in point: I spent last weekend deep cleaning my house til my back was sore, made pumpkin pancakes and pumpkin muffins, rearranged my living room, and started cutting out felt flowers for my zinnia wreath and somewhere in there squeezed in my first (and last) viewing of the not Disney version of The Hunchback of Notre Dame.

My next few blog posts are my ode to Fall starting with getting crafty. Thank goodness (or maybe not) for pinterest...I recently had the urge to make a fall wreath for our front door and pinterest once again blew me away with the amount of instead of one fall wreath, I'm making one for early fall, one for Halloween, and one for late fall because I couldn't possibly decide!

Since I am a novice crafter on a budget I needed to choose something really cheap and really easy, and I thought this little beaut was right up my alley...

via here
This wreath ended up costing less than TEN BUCKS to make and it was sooo easy my dogs could do it! I loved the fall colors of the original but wanted to make our felt flowers the color of the zinnias Hudson and I picked on a walk with Sam Dog. 

zinnia inspiration

cutting and fringing the strips of felt-so so easy!

finished cutie cute zinnia wreath

our black door needed a bit of bright color!

And voila, pretty simple but I'm proud of how it turned out! It looks fab on our porch-fitting right in with the rainbow of colors inside our house and out! Check out these other cute fall wreath ideas from my pinterest board...can't wait to get my crafty hands on the Halloween feather boa number! xo

via here 

via here

via here

Wednesday, September 19, 2012


Cezanne's Seclusion

"I have begun to think," he wrote in a late letter,
"that one cannot help others at all." This
from a man who once called friendship the highest
virtue. And in another he wrote: "Will I ever
attain the end for which I have striven so long?"
His greatest aspiration was certainty
yet his doubts made him blame himself wrongly,
perceiving each painting a disaster. These swings
between boldness and mistrust, intimacy and isolation
led him to stay at home, keep himself concealed,
becoming a sort of hermit, whose passion for the world
directed every brushstroke, changed each creation
into an expression of tenderness, which he dismissed
writing: "a vague sense of apprehension persists."

Friday, September 14, 2012

Joe Dirt works at The Louvre

I go gaga over this picture: until today it's been tucked away in my computer files, waiting for the next time I explore my old Paris pics and re-discover it. Everything about this day was joy...even the Parisian waiter with the killer mullet who was none-too-pleased to be stuck with our table of bubbly American girls, holding back laughter while sneaking pictures behind le menu.

Have you heard?

How have I not heard of Massive Attack until recently? This song is blowing my mind on a daily basis at the pres.

Thursday, September 13, 2012

Watering the Grass

It has to be said that I am pretty damn lucky to have Mr. Brady for my husband and baby-daddy. I am reminded of this fact almost daily either by watching how great he is with baby h, his patience and acceptance of me, or hearing stories of not-so-helpful hubbys and dads. A couple recent examples:

1. The other day I am complaining about how I hate my 2 pairs of jeans that actually fit and how I just want to splurge and get a pair of Sevens for $100+. Instead of telling me that's not in the budget, or that I do too have things to wear, he tells me I totally deserve that and that I should go treat myself. Aww.

2. Last night I made plans to go to dinner and get a pedicure with a friend. He finds out last minute that his friend is celebrating his 40th birthday at a sushi place in town....I tell him I can reschedule since a 40th birthday is kindof a big deal. He says, "no don't worry about it, just go have fun and I'll meet up with them after you get home." He didn't ask me to choose dinner or the pedicure, or let me reschedule even though I was perfectly willing to...

3. This happens often, Alex comes home from working from 7-4 and offers to take over playing with Hudson so I can "have a break". Or when Hudson wakes up in the middle of the night, he just gets up and takes care of H...he never nudges me and asks me to do it.

Whenever I get annoyed or lazy with loving him, I remind myself of the message above.

Since he always checks the mail, last week I put a thank you card in the mailbox for Mr. Brady addressed to:

The World's Best Dad
555 Sexy Husband Lane
Totally-Amazingville, WA 99999

He just smiled huge and called me a goober...but it's important to do those small unexpected things to "water the grass" and remind people how awesome they are & how much you love and appreciate them!

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Summer Reads 2012

This summer one of my favorite places to take Hudson on a super hot day was the library. Free, free, free, love it, love it, love it! I'm pretty sure we've checked out and read every single board book at our local branch. The summer reading program awards kids a free book once they've read (or had read to them) 15 books. We breezed through it and now we have a cute little record of some of the books we enjoyed during Hudson's first summer.

In addition to Hudson's favorites Ten Rubber Duckies and Curious George, I was able to read some really great and really awful grown-up books as well...

1. If Walls Could Talk: The History of the Home by Lucy Worsley

If you love history you will LOVE this book! This was hands down my favorite summer read and I was fascinated from the first page to the last; Worsley makes the history of the bathroom, living room, bedroom and kitchen entertaining and funny. I actually laughed out loud and was often pausing to say to Mr. Brady, "did you know that___insert some interesting tid-bit about toilets or prostitutes here____?" This was a fabulous book and I can't wait to read Worsley's other books: Courtiers and Cavalier.

2. The Hours by Michael Cunningham

Oh wow! I own the movie The Hours (one of my very faves) and have wanted to read the book for years...lets just say my high expectations for this book were absolutely exceeded...did I mention this book won the Pulitzer Prize? Being the quote junkie I am, I usually underline quotes that I want to return to in books, but because this was a library book, I restrained and turned down corners instead...when I was finished half the book was dogeared. Loved it!

3. The Adventures of Tom Sawyer by Mark Twain

I read this book in high school but I cared more about boys than literature at age 16...I appreciated it so much more this go around for 3 reasons. Twain had me laughing, reminiscing my own childhood, and imagining what Hudson will be like as he gets older.

4. The Importance of Being Earnest by Oscar Wilde

I realized this summer that I had never read anything by Oscar Wilde and decided it was time to do something about it! This play was short, funny and sweet. Loved, loved it!

5. Eat, Pray, Love by Elizabeth Gilbert

I'm actually a little embarrassed to say that I enjoyed this book. I didn't LOVE it, but I really liked it...especially the Eat and Pray chapters. What surprised me the most about this book was the fact that I could relate to Liz in her desire to find spirituality. After reading this book and deciding I need to do something to calm my own monkey mind, I start a meditation class in October.

6. The Alchemist by Paulo Coelho

The overall message of this book is...follow your heart and dreams and what is meant to be will be...this book was dreadfully repetitive and condescending. Had it not been such a quick read I wouldn't have finished it...didn't like it!

7. Valley of the Dolls by Jacqueline Susann

I should have heeded LeVar Burton's advise and not judged this book by it's cover...I had NO idea what it was about, but figured it was pretty, pink, and iconic so there must be something pretty special about it. The only thing is I couldn't make it past the first 50 pages of boring-ness...

8. Fifty Shades of Grey by E. L. James

I've read some awful books in my time, but this takes the prize as THE WORST book I have everrrrr read! I read it because I had to know what all the fuss was about...I was told it would make me feel empowered and sexy. But I ended up feeling sick, embarrassed and insulted. Insulted because I felt the author was shoving down my throat what she believes women want stirring up some anger for being labelled this way. According to this book, females want and should want...

Men who are very rich.
Men who are very powerful to the point of being controlling in their personal relationships.
Men who have private jets and penthouses.
Men who have never committed themselves to women before.
Men who are "bad boys" with issues.
Men we normal women would usually never be worthy of because we are not rich, skinny, blonde, nor well dressed.

The author made it clear that every woman's fantasy is to be THE ONE to change these men...mysteriously attract them, soften them, change their bad-boy ways, make them fall head over heels and eventually commit...whilst being spoiled with gifts like expensive computers and new cars; the woman's self respect and self esteem being built by the unexpected attention and praise of this MAN.

I CRINGED so often during this book...with the repetition of certain words such as "punish" and "down there". I could go on and on about my hatred for this book...but I have more Oscar Wilde waiting for me on my bedside table...Happy reading!

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

In the Moment

In the Moment

Some days the pond
wears a glaze of yellow pollen.

Some days it is clean-swept.
The trout leap up, feasting on insects.

A modest size, it sits
like a soup tureen in a surround of white

pine where Rosie, 14 lbs., some sort
of rescued terrier, part bat

(the ears), part anteater (the nose),
shyly paddles in the shallows

for salamanders, frogs
and little painted turtles. She logged

ten years down south in a kennel, secured
in a crate at night. Her heart murmur

will carry her off, no one can say when.
Meanwhile she is rapt in

the moment, our hearts leap up observing.
Dogs live in the moment, pursuing

that brilliant dragonfly called pleasure.
Only we, sunstruck in this azure

day, must drag along the backpacks
of our past, must peer into the bottom muck

of what's to come, scanning the plot
for words that say another year, or not.

Saturday, September 8, 2012

They jump rope in Paris also.

This is one of my favorites in my collection of vintage photographs...



Someday I will make up stories for the bebe from the quirky old photos, our long-lost-pseudo-family-members scattered throughout the house.

Wednesday, September 5, 2012


A few nights ago driving home from Alex's softball game my very tired baby started crying. I'm sure no one finds babies crying in the car pleasant...but I'd rather listen to nails on a chalkboard all day long than be stuck driving with a crying makes me feel 100% helpless therefore making me 100% anxious (control freak) and no matter how hard I try to tune it out...take a deep breath...I can't help from driving faster than I should to just make it stop.

So we are a solid 30 minutes from home when he starts crying in the back. I do my best to console him but he must know I'm lying this time when I say, "we're allllmost home baby boy" because he gets louder and louder...oh geez...I didn't bring the pacifier and "WAIL!!!" Deep breaths...count to 10..."it's ok baby, you're ok, we'll be home soon..." No relief. This kid is pissed for being kept up past his bedtime!

Suddenly I remember I have a classical music cd in the dash and I figure I better eject the book on tape as fast as possible and see if Debussy can calm my furious kiddo. I turn the volume UP so H can hear over his screams, the piano starts, and by that third delayed note my child is completely SILENT. I wait a few seconds, fingers crossed hoping it was not just a temporary lull...but H doesn't make another peep! The power of music continually amazes me. From here on out Claire de Lune is that night, that stretch of road along the river, the sun setting through the trees, and my babe resting peacefully behind me.

Monday, September 3, 2012

Hudson's Travels 6: Flying South

Hudson is incapable of holding still long enough to do any more travel pictures, but I had an entire calendar planned for the grannies, so it is lucky that I love making collages in photoshop. The babe is completely obsessed with airplanes hence the following traveling pic. That is H in the cockpit, but with the filters and size it's hard to tell...I'm hoping to write/illustrate a book for his first birthday and love how this turned out so much that I may scratch the original 5 travel pics and do illustrations like this instead. I'd also like to add "illustrate children's books" to my already way too long list of desired professions...