Tuesday, January 30, 2007


I've been tagged by a fellow AP mama, and resident of one of my former "home states", Heather. So, I'll acquiesce...

The rules are as follows:
Each person who gets tagged needs to write a blog post telling 6 weird things about themself... as well as clearly state the rules.

After you state your 6 weird things, you need to choose 6 people to be tagged and list their names.

Don't forget to leave a comment that says "you're tagged" in their comments and tell them to read your blog for information as to what it means.


1.) I am thinking quite seriously about dreadlocking my hair, once it's back to a longer length.

2.) I rarely cook. In our house, hubby does about 95% of the cooking :)

3.) I grew up in NJ, and for the 10 years away I thought I was a Northern girl who just needed to return to her element. I've returned, been back for 2 years, and you know what? I hate the frenzied, frantic pace, and mourn the distracted, disconnected state of relationships. I long for the smallness and community of the places I've lived down South.

4.) I vascillate between wanting to birth more babies, and thinking that we will adopt the rest of our brood.

5.) I buy cute high heels and wedges, and then spend 99% of my time barefoot, or in flip flops or ballet flats.

6.) I used to be a HUGE extrovert....I was long known as an outgoing "social butterfly", and throughout most of college I flitted amongst many crowds and groups of friends. Now, I am a classic introvert....I'm not even sure how such a shift occurs!?!

I don't know if these classify as "weird" per se....maybe more like "quirky-facts-that-remain-outside-the-realm-of-general- knowledge? Anywho...there ya have it!

As for my six friends, I'll go with:








Tuesday, January 16, 2007

Final Installment, Etc.

I can hear what you're thinking... "Ok, enough already with the thrifting finds." I know, I know....but please, just indulge me once more. If nothing else, it's worth sticking around for the "grand finale" find at the very bottom ;)

Today, after picking Ella up from "school" (more on that later), I stopped at a thrift shop, in the town that just so happens to be the #1 place to live in America. After 2 straight days of succesful thrifting, I admit, I couldn't resist the siren's song. So, in I went. And out I came with:

Two packages of really cool wrapping paper (?)...haven't decided yet whether I'll mat and frame them as artwork, or use them for paper crafting....Hmmm.....

I like to find unique boxes for holding Ella's elastics, barrettes, jewelry, etc. I thought this one was totally presh, with all of the farm animals and such. I hope you can see some of the detail in this picture :)

3 containers for storing crayons, colored pencils, scissors, paintbrushes, and other miscellaneous art supplies! These are neat-o, b/c they are made of some soft, stretchy plastic material....in other words, something Ella can't break, or dent furniture with. LOL.

A fun "American Girl" stripey sweater that Miss Ella will grow into. It does have built-in belt loops, but no belt....so I may have to hunt down one of you crafty knitting types, to come up with a humble little coordinating belt tie

Ok, so here's the aforementioned finale....

Remember these from Day One?

And then remember how I found these, that matched, but there were only 3....so I shrugged my shoulders, and bought them to serve as votive holders??

Well, would you believe that TODAY, 2 days later and about 20 towns over, I found another 9 of the exact same glass!?!?!
So, with a full set of 12 goblets, I'll be returning my votives to their box, and breaking out a bottle of red!

Eclipsing all of the fun little treasures I've excavated from dusty, dingy thrift stores throughout the past week, were these beauties, brought home for me by my hubby last night:

Nobody in their right mind can call my husband a romantic dud (No, Robert, not even you!)

And finally, today was Ella's first "first day of school." She will be attending Montessori preschool on weekday mornings, and today was her first foray into the world of preschool, and into the particular wonders of the Montessori method of learning. In honor of this monumental occasion, we took the obligatory "first day of school" pictures:

Hamming it up for the camera (or, for the intimates in Ella's life- "putting on Popeye"):

Monday, January 15, 2007

Goodwill, Take 2

Hit up another local Goodwill store today, and came away with more treasures worth mentioning:

A sassy little shawl for Ella :)

A cable knit Baby Gap sweater, 1/10 the price it would've cost new!

Pink, sage & yellow flower-shaped votive holders for atop Miss Ella's dresser :)

A precious and colorful handknit baby cap, for that little sister that Ella keeps asking for... (Nope, still not pregnant!)

How cool is this parka? I know I bought one of these for myself in high school...."down the shore" in Ocean City. Also Baby Gap...also insanely cheap!

Another Baby Gap sweater....I love the detailing on this one....(see close-up below)

32-piece set (8 full place settings) of brand-new, in-the-box pottery-style dishware (Sicily Caramel by Thomas Pottery). $8!?!?!?!

A cane-style basket, that I'll use in my living and dining rooms interchangeably. 99 cents.

Another score for Ella on the wooden toy front! Check out this adorable "baby cradle" that I'll be painting and re-vamping :)

2 packages of brand-new, in their original packaging, Target red cloth napkins, to be used for Christmases to come...

And a nifty, green bud vase for my living room.

And thrifty Lauren lived happily ever after. The end.

Sunday, January 14, 2007

Thrifting Success

Yesterday I was inspired to resurrect an old habit of mine- thrifting. I used to be an old pro at the game, but in recent years have gotten sucked into the false allure of the "new." So, after perusing Sara's blog yesterday, reading a few good articles, checking out Compacting, and hearing about my friend Mollie's success in finding a "new to her couch" during one of her thrifting adventures, I hopped in my van. With Ella in tow (and Robert gone working on a group project for his Masters program), I ventured out to our closest Goodwill store, and got to shopping. And boy was it a succesful trip! For under $30 I scored everything you see below:

A gorgeous, mocha-toned silk curtain panel for our bedroom. $2.99

A cute, colorful basket with a handle, to be hung in the playroom for storing our downstairs stash of clean cloth diapers. $1.99

A vintage, funky red beaded necklace that I'm hoping will go with a smoking hot strapless red dress I bought recently to wear to a wedding. 99 cents.

A tin to be used either as a wall decoration, or to hold something, in my bold-orange-and-red crafting room. 49 cents.

A funky patterened mug. I like to drink my morning coffee out of mugs whose design inspires me :) 29 cents.

3 cool, vintage bowls to be hung as wall ornaments in my dining room. My dining room is chocolate brown, with lots of bright yellow and white accents....how perfect are these??? All 3 cost me just 75 cents!

Just a closer up shot, minus the price stickers, which were blocking full view of the pattern in the previous pic ;)

Rainboots for Ella- 2 pairs, one in her current size (gently used), and one in a future size, BRAND NEW. Cost for both pairs? $6.

2 old milk jugs to be used a juice decanters- 99 cents for the pair.

Brand new Bath & Body Works cosmetic holder, for all of my pedicure/manicure supplies! $1.99

A crafting tote for Ella, 99 cents.

AWESOME, stylin' leather baby shoes (for the next one...and no, I'm not pregnant!), 99 cents.

Quite possibly the "find of the day." A painted wooden picnic basket, snatched up for Ella's new wooden kitchen and wooden play food. $1.99

Can't decide if these are wine, water or champagne glasses, but they are tinted brown, and so dainty....I love 'em! 6 glasses for a grand total of 90 cents!!

These match the skinnier glasses pictured above, but sadly, there were only 3. I bought them to use as votive holders. (See below) Set of 3, 75 cents.

How pretty are these hand painted glass mugs? I'll be using them for serving tea :) 6 for $1.25

And there you have it, my friends....more evidence that you should go thrifting. And that new is not always better....and certainly not cheaper!

Saturday, January 13, 2007

AP Mama in Training :)

Lately, Ella's pretend play has often been baby-centric :) She has approached me with any number of blankets, pieces of clothing, etc., and asked me to tie her baby onto her with them. What a great mama she will make! Three days ago I dug out Robert's Cuddle-n-Carry sling (a mei tei or Asian-style carrier), and modified it so Ella could carry her baby around. How cute is that?!

Thursday, January 11, 2007

Confessions of an Eco-Conscious Mama

I'm a mama first.

Many people in my (extended) family will tell you that I'm a bit of an ecological nut. I think it was my brother Andrew, who suggested we name our next child "Organica." Ella knows to check with me before putting anything in the trash- lest it be recyclable. :) We are card-carrying members of our local CSA, and we do most of our other grocery shopping at Whole Foods. In addition, we try to make alternative consumer choices, for example, trading in:

-Disposable diapers for cloth
-Traditional lightbulbs for low-wattage, compact fluorescent lightbulbs
-Plastic AND paper grocery bags for canvas

But now comes the confession. (This is the instant in which you should picture me ducking under my dining room table to dodge flying tomatoes....)

Swiffer dusters are my new best friend.

That's right- this self-proclaimed eco-mama buys Swiffer Duster refills in bulk (gulp), and then tosses chlorine-bleached waste into my trash, and consequently our landfills, each and every time I take to dusting my house. And I can attribute it to just 2 things-

-The self-serving: I love that these things PICK UP my dust, rather than just pushing it around

-The mama reality- I am a mom first...and if there is a disposable product that can speed up my cleaning, and help me turn my attention back to my daughter sooner, then *for this season* I'll lay down a small piece of my idealism, and pick up that Swiffer Duster, happily and without an ounce of guilt.

(Okay, maybe just an ounce....)

"The cleaning and scrubbing will wait til tomorrow,
for children grow up, as I've learned to my sorrow.
So quiet down, cobwebs. Dust go to sleep.
I'm rocking my baby and babies don't keep."