Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Way to go, Pinterest!

This Thanksgiving, I'm giving thanks for Pinterest. You know, that nasty little website that makes you feel inadequate when it comes to all things creative, thoughtful, resourceful and home maker-ish? I generally find this website uber depressing because I have zero time to make all of  the cute things people pin. I do have to have time to look at it all, though. Hey, don't judge me, I'm generally "pinning" while on the train and I've found that public transportation is generally not the place you want to start reupholstering furniture using up-cycled baby clothes and used milk cartons.

But, Pinterest did manage to redeem itself by giving me the most delicious Thanksgiving cake recipe. 

 It tastes as delicious as this picture looks. True story.

If you're not a big fan of pumpkin, its okay. It is not overwhelmingly pumpkin-ish. It is however, a great alternative to that pumpkin pie no one ever eats Thanksgiving afternoon.

Four Layer Pumpkin Cake
1pkg.  (2-layer size) yellow cake mix
1can  (15 oz.) pumpkin, divided
1/2cup  milk
1/3cup   oil
4 eggs
1-1/2 tsp.  pumpkin pie spice, divided
1 pkg.  (8 oz.) Cream Cheese, softened
1 cup  powdered sugar
1 tub  (8 oz.) Whipped Topping, thawed
¼ cup   caramel ice cream topping
¼ cup  chopped Pecans

HEAT oven to 350°F.
BEAT cake mix, 1 cup pumpkin, milk, oil, eggs and 1 tsp. spice in large bowl with mixer until well blended. Pour into 2 greased and floured 9-inch round pans.
BAKE 28 to 30 min. or until toothpick inserted in centers comes out clean. Cool in pans 10 min. Remove from pans to wire racks; cool completely.
BEAT cream cheese in medium bowl with mixer until creamy. Add sugar, remaining pumpkin and spice; mix well. Gently stir in COOL WHIP. Cut each cake layer horizontally in half with serrated knife; stack on serving plate, spreading cream cheese filling between layers. (Do not frost top layer.) Drizzle with caramel topping just before serving; top with nuts. Refrigerate leftovers.

Friday, November 2, 2012

This is the something

I have been thinking a lot about cancer. a lot.

It started when I began  reading The Emperor of all Maladies by Mukherjee-a book all about the history of  cancer, cancer treatments (or lack thereof), and the amazing doctors who have made incredible discovers in chemotherapy and rallied together to create awareness and generate public and government funding. Then I found out my step-grandmother and a  family friend were diagnosed with cancer, I started reading two blogs by mommies whose sons had Neuroblastoma (which really opened my eyes about how little we really know about cancer). All of this was really weighing one me for some reason.

When I found out that the little boy I blogged about in my last post passed away, I had myself a good cry.  I listened to "Ronan" by Taylor Swift and I cried some more and decided I needed to do something.

Next September I will be wearing gold for Ronan, and Ty, and every little person who has lost their battle or is battling cancer. Next October I will be wearing pink for Trish, Peggy, Carla, and every woman whose life has been affected by this ugly disease. And hopefully the year after that, I will return to school to become a pediatric oncology nurse. It will be a long road, but I think God has handed me a road map with my destination clearly marked and all I have to do is buckle up and  follow his directions.

My heart is telling me that this is the something that was supposed to come out of all of this.



Until next post, which I promise will be more fun and upbeat, here is the saddest and sweetest song. ever.











Wednesday, October 3, 2012

Silence, like a cancer grows

I may joke about the pitfalls of  parenting, tell my friends how cray cray my children are, complain about rolling over in the middle of the night only to find Oliver allupinmyspace for the millionth time, or sarcastically remark about how being a parent has cramped getting my drink on during the weekends, but let me be really clear. I LOVE my children and I couldn't begin to imagine life without those three awesome boys. Any parent knows you could never put into words just how much love you feel for the little person you created.That is why I have to share this:


(click on the link to read his story)

This little man's birthday is tomorrow and it may be the last birthday he ever sees. Just typing that brought tears to my eyes, because I don't think I could ever bring myself to type that about any of my three boys. His mom started this blog to share their experiences with his cancer and keep family member up to date on his progress. 

I am not a family member. Just a gal who read this blog and felt compelled by his mother's request to get his story out there. 

Maybe you can't donate anything today to help Ty or the millions of children like him that are affected by cancer, maybe all you can do is forward his story or send up a prayer. And if all you can do is read this blog and send positive thoughts Ty's way-I think he'd like that. I know his mother would.





Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Some things you should know...

Most of my friends have had babies, are having babies or are thinking about having babies. Well, all you friends in the later category, have I got a gem of a post for you. A pros and cons list for having babies.

Lets get the messy stuff out of the way first.

CONS:

1) Kids will ruin your figure.
I never appreciated my size zero, slim figure until after I had my first kid and my body didn't magically snap back like Victoria Beckham's did after popping our her oddly named children. Unlike that freak of nature, I have a saggy middle section, stretch marks in the weirdest places (we wont even go there- for now), and wider hips than I feel comfortable with. Mama just ain't as hot as she once was. And despite that motivation from pinterest, I do not think "This is the wonderful body that created three gorgeous little boys that have brought tremendous joy to my life and I shall cherish it!' every time I look in the mirror. No, no. I think "Damn, mama needs to get to the plastic surgeon-like, yesterday!"
I have put plenty of hours into getting my sexy back, and despite my best efforts, I will still need a plastic surgeon to make me look as hot as I once was. You may be one of the lucky ones that doesn't get a single stretch mark and goes right back to your pre-baby size-and when that happens, I will hate you- but I wouldn't bet on it. I could freak you the eff out right now and post a picture of my stomach just to scare the uterus right out of you, but I won't.

2)If they don't ruin your figure, they will ruin your *insert expensive furniture, family heirloom, jewlery, etc. item here*
The more children you have, the more shit they will break. Just ask Mrs. Duggar.

3)Good luck trying to go somewhere
You will find that all of your friends, relatives, parents, grandparents, neighbors, gardener, etc  have this amazing social life and have zero time for babysitting your offspring.
The rule of more applies here as well-The more kids you have, the busier your peeps will be.

4)Getting drunk become less fun
Wanna have a glass of wine? Who doesn't? Wanna have three or four glasses of wine? You won't when you remember the last time you decided to get crazy on a Friday night (and by crazy, I mean living it up in front of the DVR with a bottle of wine.See con #3)and Little Johnny made sure he woke up at 2am, 2:45am, 3:23am and 4:57am because he was teething.

4) You'll do it all wrong!
People you have never met before in your life will think it's okay to give you parenting advice.Thanks to some random at Target I now know that "You should never give your baby popcorn, because they will choke to death, retard!". For the record that "baby" was two and half, had all of his teeth, and it wasn't his first time at the rodeo, buddy!


5)Kids will make you angry at your television
Once you realize the munchkin can be entertained by something other than you or or your breast, you will be so very very grateful to DJ Lance Rock, Special Agent Oso, the Little Einsteins and the like.
You will praise the t.v. gods for returning your sanity by letting you have 22 minutes if peace and you will be amazed by the number of things you can accomplish in that short time span. After a while, you will realize you know all the words to There's a party in my tummy and that you've been humming the Wiggle song when showering and whilst out in public. But before you know it, you will be longing for a show with a real honestogod person on it, (even if it's Dr. effing  Phil!) and one day you find yourself thinking Dora is not an explorer, but a very forgetful 8year old who depends on toddlers to help her cross bridges, or paddle boats, or climb latters and why the hell  is she doing this dangerous stuff alone?  Where is Dora's mother while she is clearly not in school, but out "exploring" with her talking back pack and a  primate that wears rain boots-no matter what the weather is like? Doesn't Dora know monkeys carry diseases?

6) Sleep Deprivation
Do you like sleep? Do you like to get more than 3 hours of it at a time? If you've answered yes to those two questions, you should know that after you have kids you will LOVE sleep and  how  AMAZING it feels to get more than 3 hours of it at a time. You will also realize just how very little you thought about sleep until you had a baby.

7)It's a contest that you can never EVER win
Your baby slept for four hours straight last night? Amanda's has been sleeping through the night since birth.
Your kid got his first tooth at 3 months? Sandra's kid was born with all of her teeth. In fact, she chewed her way out of the womb at exactly 37 weeks. You started your kid on solids? Stacy exclusively breast feeds. Breast is best, after all. But when she does introduce solids -and who knows when that will be. She just LOVES breastfeeding- it will be  the vegetables that she grew in her organic vegetable garden and she will prepare them herself by chewing the raw food until the right consistency is reached and then spitting it directly into the mouth of her babe.Because why use utensils to feed the baby? That only increases your carbon footprint!


Really, this list could go on and on and on. But, I've got shit I've got to do so lets get into the pros, shall we?

PROS:

1)One day, without any prompting, your child will look you in the eyes and say "I love you, mommy". And it will be the best damn feeling in the entire world!

The End.






Friday, September 21, 2012

Slacker is my middle name

I have been really slacking on keeping up with my blog. I even gave myself the Hipster Project to make sure I stayed on top of it. And then, I got busy. Really, really busy. Trying to keep up with my blog has left me in awe of the women that can work, care for their children, keep up with the housework, soccer practices, parent-teacher meetings, date nights with the hubbies, etc all while taking pictures AND blogging about it. I can't multitask for shit.

So, instead of taking the time to prepare something interesting, I leave you with this. A song from 2008 that I recently discovered. It's deliciously mellow and his voice is like butter. No, better than butter. His voice is like bacon butter. Because, everything is better with bacon.

Truth.








Friday, September 7, 2012

Sorting out the grooming




If you me, you know I hate losing. Losing is for losers.

But, I totally lost this round of the Hipster Project 2012.

I'm sorry, but I just can't seem to get the whole " I just rolled out of bed and yes, I look this awesome naturally" look. I look effed up when I roll out of bed. This could be because I sleep next to someone who likes to punch and kick and wrestle his way through 7 hours of sleep each night. Or it could be because I'm just naturally not that pretty-either way, it's not a look I'm willing to leave the house with.

I like straightening my hair.

I like wearing makeup.

I like looking presentable.

And also, I'm looking to ask for a raise soon.

Somehow, I just don't think they'll take me seriously at my place of employment if I start showing up looking like I just got down from a three day coke binge.
This look works for Kristen. Me, not so much.


So, I lose this round. 

But, I coming back strong next week because next week is shopping and I totally kick ass at shopping.


Tuesday, August 28, 2012

The Coy boys are back!

My two oldest are starting 2nd and 1st grade today. Can you believe that? 

 I have mixed feeling about today. I am glad I wasn't there because I tend to cry at these things. Like, a lot. (It's quite embarrassing for the husband) But, at the same time, I'm sad I wasn't there to see my kids in all their "Whut up OLA! Let's do this learning thang" glory. 

Is it weird that my kids totally act like they own the school? Well. They get if from their father. Stop shaking your head at me. They totally do!


Owen and Oliver


Monday, August 27, 2012

It's a hipster's world and I'm just living in it

So, the first step to becoming a Hipster, is getting my wardrobe straightened out.

Apparently, I am to avoid buying labeled gear from the stores run by the label itself. Well, I don't do that anyway, so consider it done (This is so much easier than I anticipated).

Did you know that in the Hipster world The Classic skinny jean works for both men and women? Lucky for me, I already have four pairs of those bad boys hanging in my closet. A Hipster would pair these with some plaid tops or shirts with funny sayings on them but I have none of those, so this week I settled for stripes.
 I think I totally pulled off the hipster look this day. I was rocking stripes, skinny jeans and converse!

And, because I'm totally into cheese, I decided to take it to the next Hipster level this day and sport some awesome lenses. I don't really feel comfortable sporting eye wear when I have 20/20 vision, but apparently, the ironic eye wear is a must. 

The article suggested I try raiding grandma's closet for some vintage floral or lace, but sadly, that's just not an option for me. Granny is 5'10" to my 5' and a good 70lbs heavier with 30 of those pounds being in the boob area. 

Sadly, I own no neon nail polish, a bird neclase or any bright belts to polish the Hipster look.

Oh, wait. I do own a necklace with an owl  on it that I bought in 2008. Turns out, I was Hipster before Hipsters were Hipsters. 

I realized a few things this week. 1) Dressing like you just rolled out of bed and decided to add layer upon layer of clothing  that doesn't match but somehow coordinates is actually a lot harder than it looks. 2) I look surprisingly awesome in big nerd glasses. 3) I have way too many clothes and none of them very hipster like at all.

Tune in for next week, when I Sort out my grooming. Whatever that is.




For Cory

Tomorrow we'll discuss my adventure in sorting out Hipster fashion, but today...well, today I miss my brother, and I think this song is a lovely song to listen to when you're missing a loved one. 




I kind of realized after I typed that that  it sounded  like my brother was no longer living. He's alive folks- just far away.

I miss you too Jasmine, Kai and Emee!

Friday, August 17, 2012

The Hipster Project 2012

I confess, I had no idea what a Hipster was -so I did what any inquisitive mind would do and googled it.  As it turns out, being a hipster isn't as transparent as I thought. Did you know being a Hipster is more than wearing skinny jeans and reading Kerouac?Well you do now and you're welcome! 




Here's how Urbandictonary.com (A perfectly suitable reference, no?) defines Hipster:

Hipsters are a subculture of men and women typically in their 20's and 30's that value independent thinking, counter-culture, progressive politics, an appreciation of art and indie-rock, creativity, intelligence, and witty banter. The greatest concentrations of hipsters can be found living in the Williamsburg, Wicker Park, and Mission District neighborhoods of major cosmopolitan centers such as New York, Chicago, and San Francisco respectively. Although "hipsterism" is really a state of mind,it is also often intertwined with distinct fashion sensibilities. Hipsters reject the culturally-ignorant attitudes of mainstream consumers, and are often be seen wearing vintage and thrift store inspired fashions, tight-fitting jeans, old-school sneakers, and sometimes thick rimmed glasses. Both hipster men and women sport similar androgynous hair styles that include combinations of messy shag cuts and asymmetric side-swept bangs. Such styles are often associated with the work of creative stylists at urban salons, and are usually too "edgy" for the culturally-sheltered mainstream consumer. The "effortless cool" urban bohemian look of a hipster is exemplified in Urban Outfitters and American Apparel ads which cater towards the hipster demographic. Despite misconceptions based on their aesthetic tastes, hipsters tend to be well educated and often have liberal arts degrees, or degrees in maths and sciences, which also require certain creative analytical thinking abilities



So how does one become a Hipster? Do you take classes? Is there a Hipster test you need to pass? I needed more info, so I started googling (again) and I found the greatest article of all time, titled  How To Be a Hipster: 22 Steps . 22 STEPS? I thought that seemed like a lot. I mean, I'm pretty sure if I wanted to write a guidebook to becoming Crystal Coy there wouldn't even be 22 steps. 15 steps.max. 

Regardless, I started reading these 22 steps, I started thinking,  and I came up with an idea. The Hipster Project 2012. I saw this article as a challenge. Complete the 22 steps. Become a Hipster. How hard could it be? I don't know, but you'll find out. Because, I am taking these 22 steps and documenting my journey to becoming a Hipster on this little blog. 

If you'd like more information on how to become a Hipster, you can find the article here: The Hipster How-to.  I found it on the internet, so it's totally legit.

 So join me next week when  I'll be tackling step #1-Getting my fashion worked out. I. can't. wait.

Thursday, August 16, 2012

Tan you dig it?

Before we begin, I would like to refer everyone to my post title and let it be known that should the naming geniuses at OPI, Essie or Sally Hansen need a day off, I could totally fill in. It's a skill mastered by few.

So lets talk about tans.

As a kid, I spent my summers in the pool. All day, every day. In my teenage years, I spent hours not so much in the pool, but laying out by it. And, when I wasn't laying out at home, I was at the beach with a bottle of Hawaiian Tropics. I was a golden goddess. Tan and toned and wrinkle free.

.....That was nice. For a second there I got lost in the memories of 1999-my last summer of goldeny goodness.


Because, in the winter of 2000 I took an office job. And then a couple years later I had kids. I got busy. I got wrinkled. I got pale. And I stayed that way until last weekend.

I should mention that before August 9th, 2012 I had never before heard of a tanning wipe, until I texted Kristi to ask if she was going to spray tan before we headed to the river, and she responded with "Nah, I have some self tanning wipes I'll use". Sensing my confusion, the Cosmetic Gods -in their infinite wisdom- sent me these in my August Birchbox (which I opened, just two hours later!):


Comodynes Self Tanning wipes, for the win!

For those of you not in the know, you simply open the package, take the towelette and give yourself a good wiping down. 2-4 hours later, you are gloriously tan.  I would recommend that even if the towelette feels dry, go over your body a second time, just to make sure your tan goes on evenly. You'll tan a gorgeous, natural-looking color, you won't feel sticky afterwards, and the best part- you won't smell like cheese-its (which tends to happen with spray-tans). So it's that simple. 1)Rip open package 2) Wipe yourself with towelette 3) get a beautiful tan!

I used mine on Friday night, and almost a week later, I still feel like I have a little color left. How is that for awesome??

Have you tried tanning wipes before? Let me know which ones are your fav.












Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Estonian Music Awards 2012

Did you go? Unfortunately I missed it too so I didn't get to see these fine gentlemen steal the show. I did get to play their award winning song over and over again today at my desk though. WINNER!



Monday, August 13, 2012

A long time coming

So, I fell off the blogger wagon and had a hard time getting up. I haven't blogged in awhile for a lot of reasons, but mostly because I didn't feel like I was being me. When I first decided to blog I thought  "There is some funny shit going on in this head and the people in blogland NEED to hear it", and so I  sat down and started typing, but then I ran into a problem.

This may sounds silly, but my problem was that  I was afraid  if  the real Crystal started blogging, people wouldn't want to read along and I do want people to read my blog. I'd be a lying liar if I said I otherwise.

It's unfortunate, but  I'd get really excited about writing  a piece and then after I started typing it  I'd think about all the people that might be offended or put off by the way I chose to express myself on this blog, and I'd stop. See, the real Crystal will always give it to you straight whether you want to hear it or not, she'll curse -and not just occasionally-she curses so much her kids have asked her to stop, she has a habit of saying  inappropriate things at the most inopportune times, she laughs at people's misfortunes (including her own) and she's evil. Well, not really the last one but the other stuff-definitely. And there you have it-I'm not perfect, so my blog could never be perfect. And if it's not perfect, people might judge me. I thought about all the people that might be judging me, and  the blogger Crystal edited out content  and re-wrote posts so much the blog ended up not really being the real Crystal anymore. It t became less and less fun so eventually I stopped writing.

Then one day, after reading this blog I  thought "Hey! It's my blog and  It's me. If  the people don't like it, they don't have to read it. And the people that do like it, well they can keep on reading, because I have a lot of stuff to say."

So, let the Judgy McJudgersons judge. We should all be making  the most out of this little bit of time God has so graciously given us on Earth and if you want to spend yours judging me for the words I put in this blog, you do that. But going forward, I refuse to spend my time caring about what anyone thinks besides my maker. He made me so  He knows my weaknesses, my imperfections, and the fact that sometimes adding "shit" to a sentence is just they way Crystal rolls.

What will this blog be? I have still don't have that clearly defined, but you bet your ass it's going to be 100% me. I'll throw in some good music, some funny shit about what it's like having three boys, and the stories that made me the person I am today. It might not always be funny. If I am having a bad day, week, month- you'll get some sad borderline-emo posts. I might bitch about work. I might even type up some mushy goodness when I feel super in love with my handsome stud of a husband.

You know what? I do know what  this blog will be. It will be my life, in words. My words.

Friday, June 29, 2012

On Bohemianism...


To take the world as one finds it, the bad with the good, making the best of the present moment—to laugh at Fortune alike whether she be generous or unkind—to spend freely when one has money, and to hope gaily when one has none—to fleet the time carelessly, living for love and art—this is the temper and spirit of the modern Bohemian in his outward and visible aspect. It is a light and graceful philosophy, but it is the Gospel of the Moment, this exoteric phase of the Bohemian religion; and if, in some noble natures, it rises to a bold simplicity and naturalness, it may also lend its butterfly precepts to some very pretty vices and lovable faults, for in Bohemia one may find almost every sin save that of Hypocrisy. ...
His faults are more commonly those of self-indulgence, thoughtlessness, vanity and procrastination, and these usually go hand-in-hand with generosity, love and charity; for it is not enough to be one’s self in Bohemia, one must allow others to be themselves, as well. ...

What, then, is it that makes this mystical empire of Bohemia unique, and what is the charm of its mental fairyland? It is this: there are no roads in all Bohemia! One must choose and find one’s own path, be one’s own self, live one’s own life.
-Gelett Burgess

In Lieu of Favorite Stuff Friday

What up, Friday?!? It's been a couple of weeks since I did my Favorite Stuff Friday. And, while I like doing them, I've been trying to cut back my spending which severely limits my potential to try out new beauty products and review them online for your enjoyment. I know, I know. You're heartbroken.

Speaking of heartbroken. Those fabulous Target jeans that I spoke so highly of in my very first Favorite Stuff Friday were murdered  last week!!! Murdered! I have been in mourning for almost four days. I haven't been eating (chocolate) or drinking (alcohol). I just don't know how to move forward without them. What happened to them, you ask? Well, my friends, my penny-pinching husband decided to do a load of my laundry with some cleaning rags. Total carelessness, I tell you. And at first, he was all "Oh man, that sucks. I don't know how that could have happened" and then (after I tried to figure out for hours-yes, hours!- how it happened), he was all "So, I may or may not have washed those jeans in the same load as the cleaning rags". Can you believe that!?!? So, looks like next Friday I will be doing a review of my new favorite jeans (which have yet to be purchased, btw).

For now though, I am doing a High Five For Friday link up with Lauren @ FMGD. They are, as follows:

1)My nose is looking better! Yay!
2) Tonight, I'm going to LA with the cousins: Karyn, Kristi and Heather.


3) My vacation starts in an hour and a half. I'll be here on Monday:


4) My BFF comes home Saturday!!! Sadly, I don't have a picture of her to share with you, but you've seen her here before :)

5) I snagged these at Target. Oh, and that watch too.(don't judge me and my spending habits!)

Have a great weekend! 


Friday, June 22, 2012

Public Service Announcement!

Let this picture serve as a reminder to you young parents, soon to be parents, or people contemplating ever becoming parents. NEVER. (all caps, because I mean it!) ever, let your two year old do a live stage production of The Lord of The Rings:The Two Towers, playing the part of Aragorn, while you play the part of an Ork-with actual weapons. Oh, and while we're discussing weapons-please note- that your boys will inevitably want to get a  ninja,knight, army soldier, cowboy...etc costume for Halloween because of the cool weaponry that comes attached to said costume (not because the costume itself is cool). They will then proceed to leave said weaponry scattered about the house for their younger siblings to pick up and subsequently beat their mother's nose in with said weapon of impending doom!

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Longing for Christmas

Last year, Charlie was 20 months at Christmas time. He didn't "get it", really. Oh sure, he was crazy excited about the gazillion new toys spread out over the entire bottom floor of the house, but he didn't understand the concept of Santa. And, he surely didn't get that this was Jesus' birthday we were celebrating with these massive amounts of toys. I am confident he would get both concepts now. He has grown up so much in the last six months, it amazes me at just how much he changes on a daily basis. He is learning and growing every.single.day. He understands way more than we even give him credit for.
And so, with Charlie being able to understand  and take in so much more this year, I am really longing for Christmas today. 
When you're an adult, the magic that is Christmas  kind of fades a little. You  don't stay up wondering what surprises tomorrow will hold and you no longer jump out of bed at the crack of dawn, eager to start the marathon of present un-wrapping. Oh, but you do when  you're a parent of three small children! It is the best day of the year for me. I don't mind getting woken up at dawn - because, truth be told- I never really went to sleep to begin with. I am that excited to see the joy on my kid's faces.
I say this every year, but this time I mean it-This year is going to be the best Christmas EVER!

Monday, June 11, 2012

And, it's fat free!

I discovered this gem about two years ago, when I found myself poor enough to think that the tub o' frosting  at the grocery store was too expensive, but not broke enough to make it from scratch. It costs around $2.00 and you could easily frost two small cakes, 48 cupcakes, or one medium sized 2yr old. (just kidding- I have never frosted Charlie. The darn kid wouldn't sit still long enough for me to finish!)
I love this frosting. It's pretty basic- Add 1/2 cup of boiling water, set your kitchen-aide mixer to low for 30 seconds, and then  switch that bad boy to high for seven minutes. Go make yourself a margarita, and upon your return you will have awesome fluffy frosting.  
It's that easy. I think it tastes a lot better than the tub o' frosting. And, if that isn't enough to sell you on this great stuff- everyone (even your mother-in-law!) will compliment you on how amazing your frosting looks. "Wow, you should frost cupcakes for a living!" they might say. Or,  "I've never seen such an amazingly frosted cake!" they might gush. Well, no- they probably won't be as enthused about it as I am-  but honestly, I do get compliments every time I use this frosting. Once you let it sit, it turns shiny and smooth, and it really does make your baked goods look like you're not just wearing that apron because you got it on sale at Anthropologie.

Here is what Katie and I did with this frosting for Ollie's birthday. 

We used the Betty Crocker frosting, one Color Mate frosting tube for the black out-lining, and food coloring to give SpongeBob here some color.

Young Love


Friday, June 8, 2012

Brothers

Sometimes, being a brother 
is even better than being a superhero.  ~Marc Brown
photography by J. Schilreff. 

Thursday, June 7, 2012

Sometimes...

screaming just makes you feel better!

photography by J. Schilreff

Wednesday, June 6, 2012

When we met

"Come with me to a friends house" he said. I went because I had nothing better to do. I was fifteen on Halloween. Too old for trick or treating, too young for a club.I don't know what I was expecting. A house party? A small gathering of upper classmen who would crack jokes at my expense and make me feel small and stupid. Maybe this would be the first time I'd try alcohol? I hoped someone I knew would be there. There is nothing worse than feeling alone at a party. 
 Turned out, I didn't need to worry. It definitely wasn't a party. It was just our small group. My boyfriend, two of his friends, his brother and myself. I felt awkward and I was ready to go the instant I got there. Two little girls -I assumed they lived there- had just got back from trick or treating around the block. The younger one opened her bag and peeked inside. The older one stood in the middle of the room, dumping hers all over the carpet. "I'm looking for Sugar Babies. Those are my favorite", she said. So I got down on my knees and  helped her look for the Sugar Babies. I didn't want to, but I stayed; waiting for my boyfriend's friend to get of work so we could "hang out". 
 About the time we all started thinking perhaps somebody else knows of something we could do on Halloween besides watch school kids fight over candy, he walked in. And suddenly, time was moving in slow motion. All at once I noticed his freckles, his smile, his close set eyes, and his bright blue work shirt. He was wearing a bolo tie and holding a Styrofoam cup. He smelled like smoke and buttered popcorn and he had a smile that was genuine and beautiful. I can't tell you why, but I knew from the moment I saw him that he was one I was supposed to be with. And, suddenly, it felt awkward to be at this person's house with the guy I was dating.
 "I have to go" I said to no one in particular. "Where are you going?" My boyfriend asked. "I'm not sure". But I was sure. I was sure I was about to start a future with the stranger that just walled through the door.

What's up?


If you like songs that make you just want to get up and dance-this is what's up.




Friday, June 1, 2012

Favorite Stuff Friday

I cut back on blogging because my sister in law Katie was getting married, and I was working very hard to help her complete all the little tasks that would  make the biggest day in her life go smoothly and look beautiful. Now that that's over (insert content sigh here) I can get back to my normal routine, like blogging and watching episodes of Real Housewives. You know, the important stuff. So, how about another Favorite Stuff Friday?

1) This is where I leave you-Jonathan Tropper. 
Judd's finds out that his wife and boss have been having a year long affair, his father just died and his last wish was that his (semi-dysfunctional) family sit shiva, and his soon to be ex-wife just informed him that he's about to become a father. This book is so well written, I found myself laughing out loud, on the verge of tears and shocked enough to go back and re-read sentences- all in the same page. It's a pretty quick read, so if you're looking for something to read while sunbathing this weekend, go pick this up. Costco has it on sale for $9.97 this week.
2) Nectar Clothing
This fantastic little boutique is a place I cannot frequent enough. It has everything- shoes, jewelry, tops, skirts, pants, hats...and most items are under $30.00! I never have a problem finding something here, whether its for work or play. I would warn, that it's probably not the best shop for anyone bigger than a size 12, because their items tend to run small, and a good portion of their clothing is obviously meant for the under 30 crowd, but even if you're not into bandeau tops and booty shorts (or shorts at all for that matter), you can still find something adorable for any occasion. The girls in the shop are amazing and always so happy to help you find whatever you need, even if you're really too old to be wearing sunglasses with tiny mustaches affixed to them.

3) The Dollar Tree.
2 packages of Silly Straws, 6 poster board, 4 plastic table cloths, gift bags, bouncy balls, army men, napkins, cups, water balloons, dessert plates, pie tins, bubbles, candy, candy, candy, more candy, and streamers all for $38.00!!!! The majority of the boys party supplies came for the Dollar Tree, and I am so glad (this once!) that I didn't just go to Target :)




Thursday, May 31, 2012

This bird can sing

This song is has been on repeat in my mind for days, so I am sharing it with you. I am in love with songs that have great lyrics and this song definitely does. Birdy also does an amazing cover of Bon Iver's Skinny Love.



Thursday, May 24, 2012

Dear Charlie Bucket,

We told the boys we were going to name you Charlie before bed one night. We had just finished reading Charlie and the Chocolate Factory a couple of weeks before, but we were surprised when Owen asked "We're calling him Charlie, like Charlie Bucket?". And, the name stuck. You were known from that day forward as Charlie Bucket, or Bucket, for short.
Bucket, you're the boss. You decide when the rest of us wake up, when we eat breakfast, when we play, and when we watch Mickey Mouse Club House. You decide who puts you to bed and what song they must sing while tucking you in. The world revolves around Charlie. You are the sun, and the rest of us, planets.

You're quite the opportunist. You never let a moment pass you by. While I am off punishing the other two for doing something ridiculous, you're in the next room coloring the mirror, the desk and the ottoman and yourself with orange marker. It is amazing what damage you can cause in a matter of seconds!! When Owen was your age, I had an 11 month old Oliver (Who, at the time, I thought was a handful. Ha!  If I only knew!!!). The both of them together were never as much work as you are individually. How thankful I am that you came last.

But, oh, the love. The love you give is amazing. You say " I love you" un-prompted and it just melts my heart. Three little words and I have forgotten about pages 24-58 you decided to rip out of Water for Elephants. And, at the end of each day, you request that I put you to bed and sing you a song, and I love that time together. We sing Twinkle Twinkle, ABCs and You are My Sunshine. You know all the words, so we sing it together and I think to myself "Yes, you are definitely my sunshine!"

Friday, May 18, 2012

Chris Martin Love

When she was just a girl,
She expected the world.
But, it flew away from her reach,
So she ran away in her sleep
and dreamed of paradise.
Every time she closed her eyes.


...and I still do. Enjoy!


Just that once


In six short weeks, I will be boarding a plane to Oregon with Oliver. We'll be going on a  week long "mommy and me" trip that this middle child really needs. Not that Oliver is ever over-looked. Oh, no!! This star shines so bright, no one could possibly forget he was in the room. I just happen to think that every child (middle or not) needs some quality one on one time with their mom. It's important to have that time together without sibling interruptions, fights, or competitions. Quality time spent doing whatever it is he wants to do; without having to worry about the baby's nap schedules, or whether or not his older brother would approve. I will give him my undivided attention, spoil him rotten and maybe, just maybe-I'll let him ice cream for dinner.
          I can't wait to go on this little adventure with Ollie. I just know it will be fun. Because Ollie's fun! He loves going new places and discovering new things. And, he never complains. Ever. You want to go on a five mile hike, uphill, in the woods, while it's pouring rain without an umbrella or proper foot wear? He'll do it. And he'll smile the whole damn time. Yes, he really is that awesome.
           I hope this trip will be one he remembers for a lifetime. I hope, from this year forward,  every time he thinks about the fourth of July, he remembers the one year he and his mom spent it watching the most spectacular fireworks together, side by side; enjoying just each other, just that once.

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

BB cream

This month's Birchbox was inspired by the CW's Gossip Girl. I used to love that show- back when I had time to enjoy tv- but I've missed the last two seasons. I liked the pretty packaging, and thought the "xoxo" note card was cute, but my box was ehhh this month. I usually feel like the $10 spent on the box was well worth it, considering I'd received one or more full-sized sample in my box worth at least $15, but this month I didn't feel like that. I did discover something awesome, though. Dr. Jart's BB Cream. This stuff is the business. This is my third day wearing only Jr. Jart's and a touch of bronzing powder, and I decided I am in love. I ordered my full-sized sample this morning. 
The regular price- a whopping $32.00- is a hard pill to swallow, but I had a coupon making it half off and I don't mind spending $15 for a moisturizer, SPF, and treatment serum all in one. It goes on rather matte, requires very little rubbing in, and it  instantly makes the skin look even and smooth. I don't wear foundation during the hotter month's in SoCal, so Dr. Jart's will play a pivotal roll in my morning beauty routine this summer.

This Month's Box

Me, wearing Dr. Jart's BB cream:




Monday, May 14, 2012

A beautiful day, a beautiful bride

On Saturday, my best friend married the love of her life. The day couldn't  have been more beautiful. The sun was shining, the birds were singing, and the tears were flowing, as two of the most beautiful people -both inside and out- exchanged wedding vows in front of their closest friends and family. I enjoyed every minute of it. Thank you, for letting me be apart of your special day!

Moments before Katie slipped into her beautiful wedding dress.

Friday, May 4, 2012

Favorite Stuff Friday


I asked one of my favorite mommies to share her favorite stuff today. Jasmine is mom to my adorable nephew Kai and will soon be having another baby (and this time, it's a girl!). She's one of the sweetest people you'll ever meet and more than anything in life, she loves her family.You can follow Jasmine and her adventures with Kai and Cory (and soon, baby Emee)on her blog, here. Take it away, Jas...



My "someday" sister in law ;) blogs and every Friday she posts a few of her favorite things and explains why they are her favorite. I'm going to hop in and write about a few of my favorite things for her, by "co-blogging."
Hope you enjoy! 

1. Burberry Brit by Burberry: This is one of my all time favorite perfumes! I just cannot seem to wear it enough, and I have a pretty nice collection.. but this one always gets my pick~ :) It's a light and sweet smell that goes a long ways. 
2. Almond Poppy Seed Muffins: Now, I'm 28 weeks pregnant.. So, I definitely have to add one of my favorite food delights to the list. . . and this is it. I was out grocery shopping last week and saw this pack of 6 HUGE almond flavored poppy seed muffins- with 360 calorie for only 1/2 of a muffin. I'm a SUCKER for poppy seed muffins so I bought them. They are delicious. :) Now, I know everyone doesn't have these awesome muffins to buy that come cooked and wrapped at the store, but you can easily prepare them yourself or use this easy box of Krusteaz Almond Poppy Seed Muffin mix. :) These are just as tasty. . . 
3. Seeds of Change: http://www.seedsofchange.com/
My love for this company started out when I received a notice of getting $75 worth of all different kinds of Organic seeds for just $5. Thought that was great.. When planted- they grow amazing, tasty vegetables and not to mention they are 100% Organic seeds and when used with Organic soil/fertilizer you get organic veggies! I was shopping in Walmart last night and noticed that you no longer have to buy them through site or catalog.. because they are a part of Walmart's inventory now. Thought that was awesome too. All you organic people should give them a try!~ 

I figured 3 is good for now, Til next time... :) 

Thursday, May 3, 2012

Jack White Love

We've enjoyed Jack White for years, but his latest c.d. Blunderbuss, is ah.mazing. I just can't get enough. This c.d was seriously all we listened to for two weeks straight. I never tired of it. Bryan just recently replaced it with the new Shin's c.d and okay, okay I get that everyone thinks their new stuff is out of this world, but they got nothing on my man Jack. 

Get off your chair and dance around the room. You know you want to! 



Between you and me...

Sometimes I don't know how to pronounce certain words because I've never actually heard anyone use them; I just get them from all the books I be readin'. Please stop laughing at my mispronunciation of superfluous.

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Why do I need this stuff?

The less stuff you own, the less stuff owns you.


I can't give anybody credit for this quote, because I tried googling it, and came up with nothing. But I do like it. The family Coy is currently doing a great job of owning less stuff, but that's more from circumstance than anything else, if I'm being honest. I must say, I am surprised with just how much I can live without, and just how much I don't need. But! I can do better. I don't NEED a Perfect Brownie Maker. I have a perfectly fine brownie pan at home that does the job well enough. I don't NEED an iphone. My not-so-smart phone makes phone calls and sends texts (most of the time) just fine without the Draw Something or Tom the Cat app.Look at my Pinterest page and you'll see it's full of things I would love to own; but why? The time spent pinning these silly things to my boards, I should be using to reflect on all the wonderful things I have in life: the most amazing husband in the world, three wildly adorable boys, best friends who would do anything for me, and enough food, shelter and water to live more than comfortably. 
Sometimes I get so caught up with wanting stuff, I forget to be thankful for all the stuff I already have. I think it's time to purge myself of everything I don't need, don't use or don't want. Perhaps, once all that crap is out of my life (and out of my closets!), it will be easier to reflect on all the wonderful things I have and be truly thankful. 

Saturday, April 21, 2012

Music Music Music!

Since my husband got back from Coachella this last week (and I am totally beating myself up for not buying myself a ticket!), I have been in a music mood. All music. All the time. At our house we hold a special place in our hearts for most genres; sometimes, even country music happens. And it's almost always on somewhere in the house. When cleaning the room I have to turn on the Reality Bites music channel.  Because cleaning my room makes me feel 14, and that station caters to my inner grunge band-loving self. When making dinner, we turn up  the Jazz channel. Dinner's just not the same without a trumpet in the background. For homework, it's mostly The Black Keys that really get Bryan jazzed about calculus. This week I have had some super songs stuck in my head, and I've got to get them stuck in your heads to...because I can't do anything by myself, and that includes humming songs over and over and over. 


From LCD Soundsystem (who are no longer together...what a pitty):


Princess Chelsea (It's a little worrisome that my children know all these lyrics. Let's hope they don't start singing this at school):
The Black Keys (who doesn't love these two?):

And, Iron and Wine (Slowly, becoming one of my favorites):
If you have some songs that you just can't get out of your head, share them! I love discovering new (to me) music!



Friday, April 20, 2012

Happy Friday!

I received this in an email from one of my favorite women, today. That last glass, is totally me.


Tuesday, April 17, 2012

A Trip to the Bird Farm (In Sepia)

You can't really see it in this picture, but there was a goose just DYING to bite off Charlie's whole hand, and Charlie was like "What up goose?!? Bring it on!"

Excuses are like what, now?

I didn't get around to Favorite Stuff Friday last week because I had a cold. And, I had three kids to watch. All by myself. Also, it was raining and I was stuck inside with all of them. All.Day.Long. And also, there were three of them. There is only one of me. Okay, you get it, you get it.

Instead of a catch up of Favorite Stuff Friday, I'm going to share a video that melted my heart. I actually had to stop myself from crying at my desk whilst watching it. I'm a mom, so I am totally allowed to cry at this stuff, you guys! And I have three kids- so, you know, I cry. A lot.

Enjoy!


Friday, April 6, 2012

Favorite Stuff Friday



Just to keep you updated-I didn't win the lotto. And, I still don't have a Perfect Brownie Maker. But, what I do have is a list of some of my favorite stuff. How exciting is that!?!?!

1) Lancome Gel Pot Eyeliner
I am not usually a fan of eyeliner. I think I own four eyeliners, counting this one. I have a pretty thick lash line, so it looks like I'm wearing the stuff, even when I'm not, but I tried this out when I was in San Francisco three weeks ago, and I loved it. When applying, it feels soft, like a crayon,or....um, gel? I guess. It stays on all day long, and if you forget to wash your face at night (don't judge me!), it will last well into the next morning. I bought the great brush Lancome sells specifcally for applying it's pot eyeliners, and I love that too! If your looking to spend a good amount of money (Lancome-I learned the hard way- is not cheap!) I would recommend this one.
2) The Band-The Submarines
I cannot get enough of this band. And, the lady you hear singing (Blake Hazard); she's the great-granddaughter of F.Scott Fitzgerald.
This is one of my favorites:


3)Chapeau!
If you happen to be visiting San Francisco, or SF, as the natives call it, (Never, ever call it San Fran!) please visit this restaurant. It was recommended by this lovely gal @ Nothing But Bonfires and my co-worker, Brad.Oh!My!Goodness! I have never been to a restaurant where each morsel tasted better than the last.I loved everything the table ordered.Everything. And people, I had sweetbread. Do you know what that is? Well, apparently it is not bread covered in syrupy goodness, as the name would suggest. It is sheep's throat!! You can read about it here. You're welcome for that tidbit, by the way. Should you ever see that on a menu, at least you'll know what it is before it arrives at the table, unlike the author of this post. But guess what? I totally loved it. It wasn't until after I ate every bit on my plate that I let my mother in law tell me what it was I was eating.

Chapeau!'s service was just as wonderful as their delicious food, and every patron there was so unbelievably friendly-which I found odd for a big city. Nice, but odd. This is definitely not a touristy spot; mostly locals or frequent visitors (I'd settle for being either one of those!). It was far and away the best food experience I've had to date.

4) Coral and Navy


I love this color combination! I will definitely be rocking the navy and coral this summer.




Next week, my Birchbox comes in! I can't wait to share all the fun stuff!