St Patrick's Day

Gone are the days when we would spend all day drinking green beer in a pub......This year our St. Patty's celebrations were a bit more family-focused and low key.

Mr. B. helped the men's club at church throw - believe it or not - a pretty rockin St. Patty's Day party on Sunday evening. (As in, the bar was empty an hour or so in and the Irish Coffee was pretty stiff, even for Mr. B)

I don't know why I'm squinting so bad. I hadn't even had a drink yet.

Little Junior is technically a quarter Irish (which more than most of us can say) so I thought his little outfit was too too cute.
Homeboy rocked the "WTF" face for half the night until he fell asleep because it was way, way, way passed his bedtime at this point. We employed our usual fall asleep in your crib - then transfer to the car seat - and continue to sleep the night away tactics for our evenings out, but this time he finally clued in to the game and wasn't going to miss any of the fun. That and all his teenage girlfriends from church passed him around and around in circles to get their share of baby cuddles. This kiddo is so very loved. And lucky. Funny that.

And you WONDER where he gets his dimples from?


JBF Bargains

So last post I mentioned that Mr. B, Little Junior and I hit up our local JBF sale a few weekends ago. Thank goodness I have helped sell our Theta Garage Sale stuff at a previous JBF sales so I knew the ins and outs / tips to getting all the really good deals and items because otherwise that place can be a little overwhelming.

I'd been looking forward to this sale for a while because the last one I went to was when I was pregnant, and obviously I didn't know if we were having a boy or a girl, which made stocking up for Le Bebe a little more challenging when half the arena is pink and the other half blue. I'd previously stocked up on a bunch of essentials, so this time I wanted to get some clothes, toys and a few other items I thought we'd need for the next 6 months.

One of my favorite finds was the brand new with tags Graco Johnny Jumper. My girlfriend Beth had let me try out her new jumper to see if Little Junior would even like it, which of course he did, so I was pretty happy to find this one in perfect condition for half the price of Amazon.

Little Man done jumped himself to sleep. And who even knows where that other sock is.
I did a number on every and any precious little summer smocked outfit I could find in his size. Here's a sample of what I found. Most of these were brand new with tags too. I'll take a Vive Le Fete outfit for $2 ANY day.
He'll hate me for this one day and I don't even care. And they're all wrinkly because I'd forgotten to take them out of the dryer right away. Thankful for that rapid steam feature!
And, my favorite, by a landslide, was the little man seersucker suit I found:
Again, wrinkly because I forgot about it in the dryer.

Mr. B has a matching suit that he'll wear this summer for parties and wedding so I am embarassingly excited about Little Junior dressing up just like this dad. It's going to be so stinkin cute yall.
I also found a few cute accessories that I'll probably learn to curse at some point, but for now, while I'm still in the honeymoon of dressing a mini-man, they're just too cute to pass up.
Because what baby doesn't need a fedora, RL striped belt and mini new balances? Seriously.
This is about a 1/3 of what we got - the rest was PJ's and cotton play outfits, 11oz Avent bottles (impossible to find!!) socks, shoes, toys, books, and a set of kiddie dishes. (With pictures and accompanying French words. Nothing says family dinner like a French lesson! Oui oui!)
Who doesn't love a shopping-savvy southern mama?!



Weekend Recap

Friday was pretty much a perfect SAHM day. These are RARE. Let's be honest: most of the time, my days are filled with raising a child, taking care of dogs, cleaning, cooking and just generally worrying about all things that didn't get finished. But Friday? Friday was a day off from the grind.

Little Junior woke up early, which was fine, but after his morning bottle we had a lovely cuddle / nap in bed. Blissful. Then I met my friend, Beth, and her son August, at Starbucks for a coffee date. Beth and I met at our first Garden Club meeting - we were both the super pregnant ones - and we've clicked since. We hung out at Starbucks and chatted, laughed, drank lots of caffeine and watched the babies coo and nap. After about 3 hours, we realized we probably should get going since she was leaving for Florida and still needed to pack. Otherwise, I think we could have spent the entire day there.

We came home for an hour and then turned right around, loaded up the stroller and walked down the street to our neighbors house to spend the afternoon with Kelly and her girls Charlotte and Sophie. Here's what I love about where we live: the neighbors! We never had anything like this in Pennsylvania and in only a few short months here, we've made some really good friends and they're all within walking distance.

Kelly and I sat outside in the backyard in the sunshine, drinking tea, sharing a piece of cake and watching the girls run around. When the sun started to set, we moved inside where we took one look at the clock and decided it was close enough to 5pm to justify opening a bottle of wine. I suppose the large glass of wine went to my head because before I knew it I was hiking the hill home with a fussy baby ready for dinner and I'd completely missed Stations of the Cross. Fail.

Friday night was low key with pizza on the sofa and an HGTV show about Extreme Log Cabins. Don't judge. It was just what we needed and we've decided we're going to retire to an extreme log cabin in Colorado to spend the rest of our days skiing. Escapism at it's finest friends.

Saturday was really low key. Mr. B let me sleep in to try to shake this never-ending cold and we spent the day cleaning and organizing. On Saturday night, we had friends Laura and Travis over for drinks before we went to the Cafe for dinner. They have a little baby two months older than Little Junior so that was fun to watch them....sleep(!!)....while we chatted, had some wine and ate nibbles. We went to dinner and got home way too late.

And, of course, Sunday morning came way too early. I woke up at 3am and could. not. go. back. to. sleep. Around 4:30, I gave up and got up to start a quiet morning by myself. By the time everyone else was up, I was ready for a nap, but it was time for church. It was a special mass for Lent and the Scrunities so I dressed Little Junior up in some spiffy Sunday best: blue checked button up shirt, red tie and his Gap 1969 jeans. (His khakis are still too big so he got a "jeans at church" pass.)

And then we had a meltdown. When it's time for a baba, Mama needs to get the camera out of his face and get to work!

Sunday afternoon was spent at the Just Between Friends sale. I was introduced to this by my friend Tiffany when I moved here and I am so glad she let me in on the secret. I'll spend an entire post recapping the deals we found there but let's just say I stocked up on the cutest outfits (about half brand new, half gently used) for next to nothing. Yall. A green gingham smocked (mallard ducks!) jonjon for $2. Vive Le Fete brand too. So, yes, I was on a total bargain high all Sunday afternoon.

Little Junior had some extra energy to burn off so we popped him in his new Johnny Jumparoo and he was so content to hang around and watch us. After about an hour, Mr. B caught this epic photo which just cracks me up. I mean, it's really hard work being so awesome.

Sunday night I took the girls to the ball field to play fetch and enjoy the last bit of warm, dry weather and take advantage of the extra daylight. Clem was worn out.

Sunday night, once Little Junior was asleep, Mr. B and I spent the evening organizing our calendars for the next few months and we've come to the realization that with the exception of one weekend, we're booked up through June. That's awesome. And, we decided to go ahead and spend all those Marriott points Mr. B's been racking up with all his traveling. We're headed to Vail in February 2014 for a ski vacation. Who cares if it's a year away? I'm already counting down.

Not so sure I can bear to leave this loyal friend for a week when we're off to London next month. Dear Clementine, you are too regal.


After the experts!

Well, installation day has come and gone and I'm so happy to report that I love the final product! You'll remember from last post that I was having major white girl problems about spending so much time (like all day every day) in our home when it wasn't decorated and missing essential pieces of furniture!
There are a few pieces of furniture, however, that didn't arrive in time for my party tonight - boo hoo. And, of course, they are the pieces that I'm most excited about. Lucky for me, Kathie, our designer, loaned us some holder pieces for the party and they are just as fabulous as the stuff we ordered. No one will be able to tell!
Since it's not truly, truly, truly finished, I'm going to hold off on posting all of the "after" pictures until next week. But I'm not so mean that I'd keep yall waiting for at least a sneak peak, so here you go!


Bringing in the experts

I bit the bullet a month or so ago and called an interior designer.

Yep. Those of you who know me pretty well know this was pretty left field move for me. Indeed it was.

But, so far, I couldn't be more thrilled with this decision. In fact, I wish I'd done it ages ago.

You're probably wondering why considering I've devoted a good chunk of this blog to home renovation, decorating, repairs, etc. Well, I'll tell you why. Because after a good two months of being couped up in this house, staring at empty walls, wishing for matching furniture and realizing the project would NEVER, EVER, EVER come to fruition given the laundry list of things to do and the limited time/resources I have now, I just had to bring in some help.

So believe it or not, the finished product is being installed tomorrow. I actually feel like I'm in an HGTV show for once. Me, Little Junior, Clemmie and Dixie clear out of the house for an entire day while the crew come in and essentially transform my living room, dining room and kitchen. Is this real life?

It won't be a total surprise since I've been involved with every step along the way picking out fabrics, furniture, art, etc. And they will be reusing a lot of our existing stuff, but I still think it will feel like a dramatic change. (And in Mr. B's words, it better feel like a big change given the chunk that just came out of his wallet.)

I'll be sure to take some before pictures tonight so we can put them against the finished product. For now, here's a teaser to what I've chosen. And apologies for the quality of some of the photos. I was taking a picture of a print out or a catalogue. I never claim to be a professional!

A mix of fabric inspiration. Some of these made the cut and some didn't. (The top two are no-go's and the bottom three are a yes)

New ottoman / coffee table
Two accent chairs

New sideboard for the hallway
 New TV stand - and yes - it will be red
Fabric for the window panels
Plus, there's a large rug for the living room, lots of photos and art for the walls, some new slipcovers for the kitchen table chairs, throw pillows - I'm probably forgetting some stuff but you get the point. We are taking care of business around here.
Mr. B is going along with this because I am basically making him, but I think he feels a little bit like it's unnecessary given all the experience we have from the past. But I keep explaining that for once in almost 10 years, I want a FINISHED product. I want my project to be complete. (Now, we ALL know that a project is never complete and there's always a few stragglers on the to-do list, but you catch my drift here.) For him, there is no argument strong enough to match up against the will of a woman who spends all day, everyday in her home.
Stay tuned for the big reveal!