Wednesday, November 25, 2015

Monday Momfessions: November 23 Week

The Mommy's Sick?! Version:
1. The day you realize you're sick, the children will bounce on your bed to ensure that your capability to stand upright really doesn't exist. Arm, leg and possibly hair pulling may also occur. Potentially a tummy smack (aka: "big hug). Ensure a bucket is near by if nausea is your culprit.

2. You can hide out for awhile, but once the toddler recalls that you actually reside behind that closed door, he will immediately go into "Walking Dead" mode and groan, moan and bang until he can reach the Mommy flesh and blood to continue his lifeline.

3. Starting around age two is the perfect time to introduce Lysol spraying as a core competency. Hey - it's going to take a village to shlep this mess.

4. Sickness will not be a solitary recovery effort. Dogs, cats, small children and their toys will constantly be available as bed nurses. Daddy maybe not to much - he's curled in the fetal position downstairs. To be fair: Hulk Hogan and Seth Rollins have actually been pretty decent helpers. They're quiet, small and seem to like the SATC reruns as much as I do.

5. Visible sickness will require much education. If you can talk among the porcelain and tiles, prepare your 90-minute lecture for the students who have many questions.

6. A party will be thrown in your honor on the other floor of your home. Pot banging, play kitchens, John Deeres with backup noises, toolboxes and a full on wrestling match will be rehearsed at extreme decibel levels all in anticipation of your soon-to-be arrival to the main floor.

7. Your husband may say something like: "Hey! It looks like you're losing some weight though like you wanted!" This is not helpful, but is appreciated for the silver lining effect.

8. This same husband will be accountable for navigating three birthday parties when he's been off the circuit for a few years. And he'll flat out refuse music class. So go ahead and toss that $25 down the toilet, flush and then pray the birthday children received the actual intended gift vs. something from a passion party mommy attended last month.

9. You're brood will stare at you - be prepared. But don't look yourself - it's because you actually look like one of those zombies as described earlier.

10. When it's time to emerge, don't look around and panic. Simply delight that your beautiful family has been "making memories." Then slap on some lipstick, grab a bottle of bubbles, put on your booty kickin' boots and skinnies that fit better now and get back at it. Then schedule a mani and massage. You deserve it from all that laying around...

'Tis the season! Wishing you and yours wellness.

Saturday, November 21, 2015

Get Your Shrub On!

"Shoot, I can't meet you at 10 - L has music and we have two kiddo parties to hit. I'm going to try and squeeze it in around noon!" I reported excitedly to my girlfriend via text, my fingers gliding quickly over the screen in anticipation of the event I had missed the last few years.

For several seasons, Mom and I attended the Family Tree Nursery Holiday Open House, the glitter and joy of the season lining every single wall with Christmas goodness. Little did I know until spotting the perfect potted plant on my girlfriend's front porch, that during this event they host a Holiday Container party.  Here, you grab a planter, stuff it full of green lush goodness, and sprinkle in some holiday cheer of ornaments, pinecones, birch and more. In the end, you walk away with an affordable piece that lights up your entire front porch and lasts until nearly spring. Swoon!
Even with the best laid plans, it didn't work for me to attend this year, courtesy of a nasty stomach bug. But thanks to one incredibly awesome friend, this little beauty will adorn our holiday porch:
Here's her work for art for her lovely home:
Thank you, A for getting your shrub on and for being the giving, thoughtful friend you are. We can hardly wait to plunk this container of goodness down among our already sparkling lights.

Stop by Family Tree tomorrow 11-4 and one of these can be yours. Happy creating!

Tuesday, November 10, 2015

Pre-Holiday Fun!

"Oh I don't know. I'm not sure about that whole seeing Santa before Thanksgiving portion of the whole deal," I chatted to my husband over a boiling pot of spaghetti. The mister, an avid proponent of keeping holidays within their rigid boxes of timelines, just shook his head. But the kids had already heard the words "cookies" and "Shrek," so it was either go to the event or find 3,468 new ways to manage whining.

Mid way through the week, the desire to hang with friends and try a free kid event prevailed, and thank goodness it did. The Shrek Experience is an absolute blast! Located outside of the downstairs Dillards of Oak Park Mall, it's an interactive playground of imagination and holiday joy. Even the big man himself (not Santa), who is incredibly hard to impress, has asked multiple times to return. Stick it on your holiday bucket list!

High level, here's how it works, noting ours was the soft opening, VIP event (thanks S!):

You check in with some of the friendliest gals around. Poised and professional, they get you ready for what almost feels like a Disney-esque experience. In groups of eight or less, you enter, immediately placed with "Candy" who gives clear instructions and points children to iPads on the wall. Here, they receive strategies on how to fly a sleigh and even get some practice in, all the while the flashes of light and beautifully decorated walls dancing around them.

Next you go and have the flight experience. Unsure of what our "spidey sense" kiddo could endure, we perched near the back of the sleigh and awaited our adventure. The kiddos and adults were all smiles as we floated across star lit skies, delighted in the room's changing temps and cascaded down hills of ice, only to finally land in the North Pole. It felt authentic, unique and like a little piece of amusement park without actually moving. Even this motion sickness mama had no trouble!

The next holding room couples kiddos with more iPad fun, engaging them in building a gingerbread cookie. All I know is that our big guy walked away with a topless gingerbread woman with a lea, purple cowboy boots, floral shorts and pigtails. I'm not even going to ask...

Finally we land on the lap of Santa, who is joyful and fun and plays little tricks with the candy canes to capture that perfect smile on film. The walls behind him are glorious, feeling just as if you had entered his personal study just to share your wish list of the season.

Walking away with a candy cane, jump drive and the opportunity to donate was just a delight.

So go ahead and see your regular Santa, but add this one too. It's worth it...even 50+ days before the big day.

Happy pre-holidays!

Oh The Things We Found

Ok, ok, I'm ashamedly late on this - the texts from loyal readers reminding me they were waiting for my Holiday Mart finds post before the ventured out themselves - sorry! Perhaps you can have similar luck when you attend Holiday Boutique in OP in less than two weeks?!

This year, the Junior League gals brought their A-game again this year with a plethora of adorable booths, fun music and festive scene. Though parking was a nightmare with many closed streets and garages, valet was made easy and affordable (even for the gal who lost her valet ticket by end of night - eeeek). Here's what I walked away with:

Food! One can't attend HM and skip the cherry tasting session or
delighting in some dips!
Our first nephew's first Christmas souvenir
Edgy glitter in rose gold

Gotta nab the KC and Royals gear in the middle of all this excitement
Some glitter for the neckline too
My shopping buddy walked away with an amazing personalize platter, some gear for her tiny, darling frame and some KC stuff too.

Another great weekend of kicking off the most wonderful time of year! Two of two national shopping holidays - check, check!

In Stitches Over This Fix #8

"Who knows what will be in the little box of delight?! I didn't provide any purpose this time around - it's a complete surprise!" I shared with my boss, who know fully understood the anticipation of a Stitch Fix box. With no real direction to my stylist other than pure delight, I was happy to find:
Pixley Split Neck Print Blouse: pattern is to die for and one my eye was
constantly drawn to on the Fix boards. I was super bummed to find it gathered
at my waist due to my "substantial bits" and didn't flow like I'd seen on the
thinner others. It was also tight in the chest. Darn!!!
Kut Jonathan Skinny Corduroy: to die!!! Plum cords?! I didn't know I
"needed" these in my life until this moment. Super versatile and soft as pajamas,
they are my new go-to for work to weekend. Swoon!
Skies are Blue Kendy Detachable Faux Fur Sleeveless Cardigan: a super fun piece with
a detachable faux fur, but I a) will never hit the cleaners b) am not young and hip enough to
layer this correctly and pull it off c) can never find quite the right pieces to go underneath.
Great for the fashionista though!
Also included was the Loveappella Madeon Sparkle Doman Knit Top, which was really drab coloring on me and was too tight in the arms (had some fun sparkle in it though!) and a RD style Calvina Side Slit Cowl Neck Knit top I almost kept but felt it resembled too many of my basics.

Super fun and holding my breath for the next one!

What's been in your adorably branded box lately?!