Archive | September, 2012

A lesson in creative cussing

25 Sep

I’m a seamstress. Seems like a low impact job, right? WRONG, WRONGO, WRONGITY-WRONG-WRONG-WRONG! I’m constantly hurting myself and becoming ailed by hazards of the job. Two weeks ago, I was so crippled with back pain from constantly being hunched over a machine that I was able to squeeze two (TWO!) massage appointments out of my husband because “PLEASE FOR THE LOVE OF GOD if I send you to the spa will you shut the heck up about the sore back!?” Seems sweet and awesome and pampery, but really? TORTURE!!! THE PAIN AND HORROR!!!!! But alas, I’m much better now and am complaining to a much more minimal extent.

Until today. Whence I got my middle finger caught in the unforgiving death chomp of my embroidery machine. While it was humming away at full blast. On a very speedy transmission. With venom-filled needles.

It was a reckless accident that involved trying to guide my fabric through the embroidery machine while I turned away from the machine and looked at Navy and suddenly CHOMP CHOMP PIERCE BLOOD CHOMP BEEEEEEEPPPPPPP (which is the horrific screaming noise the machine makes when Error: Needle has broken.  OH REALLY, MACHINE!? My needle broke!? Cause I’m pretty sure I WAS THERE FOR THAT ONE and OH YEAH IT’S STILL IN MY FRIGGING FINGER EFFING FRICK CRAP BUTT HOLY WHUT THE!?).

Yeah. I photographed it. And photoshopped it. Because that’s what morons who sew their fingers do. We take photographic evidence and then make it look artful.

Then I texted my sisters a string of horribly connected cuss words (with photo attached) and this was the conversation that ensued:

Meant to say get your ear pierced. The needle was impeding my ability to type. 

Speaking of which, the needle was also impeding my ability to carry my baby, prevent him from knocking over the ironing board (which had the hot iron on it) and pull the dog’s hair, all which was happening WHILE I HAD A NEEDLE LODGED IN MY FINGER. So I’m walking around with a broken pinky (oh yeah, I moved some furniture by myself a week ago and SMASH, broke, sob, bruise, ouch) and a pierced finger all on the same hand. Good thing I’m right handed and a mom because moms have an acute ability to do a trillion things with one hand, whether or not the other hand happens to be practically detaching itself from your body or not.

So THAT was awesome and everything. I’m nursing my wounds by getting back on the horse and showing that embroidery machine who’s boss (also by drinking wine and self medicating).


This is just out of control

14 Sep

I love color. On just about everything. I’m not afraid of it. Take a glimpse at my home, for example:

Wasabi Green Kitchen



Orange Bathroom:


Navy’s colorful nursery (yyyeeppppp, I know there are missing letters. The grabby baby hands are grabby, and a collection of painted letters is gradually accumulating behind his crib and hi, I’m too lazy to fix it):


I know that not everyone shares my appreciation for color (as evidenced by the fact that one time I painted my bedroom and one person’s response to the color choice was “I hope you kept your receipt” – that is a true story). However, I continue to be attracted to colorful things and I especially love to WEAR colorful things. Which makes the current trend of colorful pants EXTREMELY DANGEROUS!!! Because, well, erm, you see, I have um… 7 pairs. I think I may be addicted to colored pants.


In my very limited defense, most of these pants were under $20, so What Is We’re Fine? I know it’s not ok to have this many colored pants when most days you don’t even WEAR pants, but I am just having too much fun with this trend and I have to take advantage of it while it lasts. Plus, did I mention they were all SUPER cheap??

Which brings me to my next point, and a styling tip (which I would like to note that I am completely and entirely unqualified to be giving out, so please take this with a dash, not a grain, of salt). I FIRMLY believe in the high/low styling rule: pair high price investment pieces with low price trend items. You will create a style that is then a bit trendy but mostly timeless. I totally believe in investing in quality clothing when appropriate. Some items worth doing your homework on and investing in: leather boots, black blazer, great denim, jackets/outerwear, shoes of various function (a pair of neutral flats, a great pair of black pumps, a great pair of nude pumps), etc.  The list varies according to your regular wardrobe needs (Are you dressing for work? What kind of work environment? Do you need to be crawling around on the ground with kids? Is it warm or cold?). This post is starting to sound very advice-y. Where are all the exclamation points and capitalized words?! I FEEL SO MUCH BETTER NOW!!!!!!!!

Anyway, I believe that the colored pants trend is adorable, but probably won’t last forever, so I just couldn’t justify investing in expensive pairs. Now, I’m a denim snob. I am extremely picky because my body is wonky in that my trunk is not proportional to my butt and thighs, so I am very picky about how my jeans fit. I look best in skinny jeans, which DEFINITELY need to fit right to look right. All of my colored pants are skinny, but I knew for the outfits I’d be putting together with them, they didn’t have to be The Perfect Fitting Jeans… just good enough to pull off a fun look. So I plan on pairing these colorful threads with more high-quality shirts, blouses and jackets to make the outfits look higher end overall.

I already shared a yellow jeans outfit here but I’ll be adding more as I wear outfits that incorporate them.  I know you’re probably on the edge of your seat. Don’t tell me if you aren’t.

Are you guys into the colored jeans look? How would you wear them? What colors do you have?? Do tell!

Furniture changer upper

10 Sep

In June, our neighborhood had the big hoopdy-do garage sale where everyone pitches their old junk and tries to get $5 for it. Let’s be real, no one actually makes money doing a garage sale. I bet if you kept track of all the time you spent marking items with dumb little price tags, plus the cost of said price tags, plus the hours you sat in your garage watching people talk crap about your collection of Precious Moments figurines, you’d come away with like, $.32 an hour for a whole weekend’s worth of work. My suggestion? DONATE IT! Tax write off, holla atcha. Anyway, not a big garage saler myself (in case the previous sentence didn’t give that away already), my sister and I went strolling with the babes just trying to see if we found someone trying to sell something awesome, like a broken briefcase that secretly contains a million dollars but was sold to us for $2 (after we negotiated them down from $3 because duh, that’s how garage sales work). Turns out we didn’t find a million dollar briefcase (wop wop) but I did come away with a pretty decent coffee table (among a couple other junky things that I told Stockton “I PROMISE I’LL UPCYCLE THAT AND MAKE IT COOL BABE I LOVE YOU” except, yeah, it’s still all sitting either in the garage or the basement serving no purpose other than to create fights and raise Stockton’s blood pressure, WOOPS!). The coffee table was solid maple (no before pictures, though, because that would make me actually a purposeful blogger who PLANS things and PREPARES for WELL THOUGHT OUT posts, and don’t you KNOW me?!). It had clearly been loved by the family as evidenced by all of the colorful illustrations that were all over it (Alexis wuz here and she hearts Bobby written in hot pink highlighter, etc.). Starting price: $35. My takeaway price: $23. How I got it that low?

Yeah, something along those lines.

Anyway, after sitting in my garage for 3 months, I finally decided to tackle it today. I’m sure if you’ve spent all of 30 seconds on Pinterest, you’ve seen this pin (or one like it) which is allegedly a tutorial for how to do this in an intelligent and careful manner. Ha. I only needz the picturez cuz I’m a 1/2 az.

My “before” coffee table actually looked a lot like the before in this picture but it was a rectangle and had a drawer in the side that I had to incorporate into the finished piece.

And so, a shoddy play by play of how a haphazard DIYer threw some fabric and batting on a table and turned it into a Coffee Tottoman (you’re welcome for the new vocabulary).

1) Sand your table a little (I don’t know, they say it’s important, something about the paint sticking, yada yada. I do this by going, “STOCKTON!!! I need your heeeeelp.” Gotta get you a hubsband for the grunty stuff).

2) Wait 3 months and fight with your husband about that FRIGGING TABLE THAT IS STILL IN THE GARAGE FRIGGIN A!

3) Spray paint the table legs and sides (skip the top since you’re covering it anyway, doy). I think I put two-ish coats on here. Seemed good enough. It’s going in the basement for crying out loud. It’s sole purpose is probably going to serve as a big, toxic teether for Navy anyway.

4) Let dry. Drink some wine during this period. Also: eat chipotle.

5) Here’s where we get technical. Once it was in the basement, I had to cover the whole thing in enough batting to make it squishy enough that it felt like an ottoman and not just a table covered in fabric. When you’re a seamstress with a shopping problem, it happens to be quite convenient that you have 18 yards of foam batting on hand (who woulda thunk) so cut a few pieces to size (in my case, it was 3 base pieces). Then for the top piece, I did a 4″ overlap on each side to pillow the sides.

6) Staple all of the batting to the underside of the table. Get bored. Drink more wine. Start getting distracted and work faster and sloppier because of said boredom. Note that you should never offer your services as an upholsterer.

7) Then we go in with the fabric. I bought 2 yards of cotton fabric (it was on sale for $5 something/yard) to cover it. I opted to not go with home dec fabric because a) the selection of home dec fabrics at my local fabric store were blegh and b) home dec fabric is more expensive and hello this was a $23 table for crying out loud. I didn’t want to spend more on the fabric than the whole table. My goal when searching for fabric was to find a nice pattern that contained the colors grey, tan, yellow, black, and/or eggplant (since those are primarily the other colors in my basement). Found this fabric and basically just said “Grey, tan, yellow, black, SOLD!” It was good enough, and it’s kinda pretty. Probably not usually my style, but I like it.

8) Staple again. SO BORING WITH THE STAPLING. Who would suspect that stapling fabric to the bottom of a table could be so tantamount to poking your eyes out with toothpicks!? I mean… I think I have terrible, undiagnosed ADD which doesn’t help when doing such monotonous work as this, too, sooooo I maaayyyy have gotten a little sloppy near the end. I was just so hot and bored and thirsty and IS IT OVER YET?! OK, I don’t like stapling. Topic can now be put to rest.

9) Step back and say, “Self? You are not bad. That’ll do, Donkey.”

Total budget breakdown (because this is what real DIY bloggers do at the end of their posts):

Table: $23

Paint: I don’t know ’cause I already owned it

Batting: had it (see: hoarder)

Fabric: $10

Wine: Roughly $3/glass – drink at your own risk when staples are involved

9 Monther

9 Sep

Navy is officially 9 months old. 3/4 of a year. A tornado of activity and mobility whose purpose in life is to destroy my house, one spilled beverage at a a time. No, but really – the house is just in a permanent state of damp because of all the spilling, drooling and other bodily fluids. Gross? Maybe. Wanna come over for dinner? Didn’t think so.

Also this: he sucks at napping. I get MAYBE 30 minute naps from him, 45 when the stars are aligned just right and I have nothing important to get done. On the days I have eleventy million things to do? He just defies the Law of Growing Babies and is too cool for napping. He does sleep 12 hours at night though, and my pediatrician informed me that babies his age really only need about 13 hours of sleep in a 24 hour period, so the two 30-minute naps a day make total sense. That does not make them suck any less, however.

He is tall, skinny and brainy according to his measurements at the doc, and yet again, he is off the scale in the looks department (What’s that? Bragging? Me?? NEVER!). Here’s the sweet progression of doctor’s visits over the last 9 months. I just don’t know why they HAVE to grow up. And become so squirmy and yelly. He was really so containable back in the day. Now? Mehhhhh notsomuch.


In keeping with his state of permanent motion, his 9 month photos are particularly All Over The Place.



And now my attempt at a normal 9 month collage, wherein I try to make the previous photos look slightly less Attack-The-Innocent-Giraffe and slightly more My-Baby-Is-Cute-And-Sweet-And-Look-At-How-He’s-Grown!


Love that ball of motion. Now excuse me, my 30 minute naptime has elapsed and I’m being yelled at on NavyCam. And do not be dismayed: he is not sleeping. Just hollering from a horizontal position.