Thursday, October 25, 2012

One Year Milestones!

I have a baby book that I bought before the little Mexi-can was born.  I swore I would write everything down and keep up with all that happened.

I know that sounds like a prelude to failure, but I haven't really failed.  Has the book been filled out?  No.  However, I did jot down a lot of dates with happenings, and most of those happenings have pictures/videos that coincide with them.   I thought, just for safety purposes,  I would publish this to vivacindy in case I lose that little list, or heaven forbid all my pictures.

(Can you imagine what a nightmare that would be?!  I actually just backed up everything the other day with my new 1.5TB hard drive purchased at B&H)

Mateo's First Year Milestones
Smiled- Nov 1 (6 weeks old)
Rolled over- (back to stomach) Nov 30
Laugh- Dec 15 (3 months)
Plane ride (to Canton) - Dec 21 (3 months)
Scooting - Feb 17 (5months)
Rocking on hands and knees - 5 months
Solid food-rice cereal & sweet potato - March 21 (6 months)
Stopped swaddling - March 25 (6 months!)
Said "da" - March 31 (6 months)
Self sooth to sleep [without crying] - April 1 (7 Months)
Crawling - April 13 (7 months)
Sitting up - April 25 (7 months)
2 bottom teeth- 7 months
Climbed stairs - June (9 months)
Clapping- June 19 (9 months)
Waving- 9 months
2 top teeth - 9 months
Walking- 11 months
"Talking" on a cell phone - 12 months

Beside my 10 million pictures (organized on iphoto),  I have a ton of videos clips of my little mexi-can.  I have started a 'one year recap' video to combine them and it is going to be priceless....when I finish it. 

What about you guys?  Have you kept up with baby books, dates, pictures of your little ones?  What has been a good system for you?

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Atlanta "Pumpkin Patch"

When I did a search for "Pumpkin Patch in Atlanta," my choices were many.......many many miles outside of Atlanta.  What about us folks who don't like to go outside the perimeter? ha!  Just kidding...but seriously, we were just looking for a place with a lot of pumpkins [close by] for our little mexi-can to climb all over.  (We could save the entrance fees and hay rides etc, for another year.)
We found that place at Brookhaven Christian Church  (4500 Peachtree Road 30319) just north of Buckhead.  This is really a public service announcement. The details of this year's sale were not listed on the web,  so I called the church myself....and here you have it Atlantans:  
Sale runs from Oct 14th- 31st.  11am- 7pm. Cash only.
It was great!  Just what we were looking for.  Mateo had a great time running around.  I had to tell him several times that the pumpkins are not pelotas.  (balls-ha!) Crazy boy!
The selection was wonderful and the prices?  Well, is $18 too much for a pumpkin?  Don't answer that!  It was for a good cause.  We were there on opening day and there were rows and rows of every size.  We bought a very tall pumpkin, a fat one and several cute little ones for my dining table.   The church even had photo props! Good times!
Up next!  Pumpkin carving!

Gangnam Style!

Im sure by now you have seen/heard about Gangnam Style, the crazy Korean song & video that is being played everywhere.  We heard on the local news that the video had over 400 million views on You Tube.  Mateo was mesmerized the very first time he saw it.  (and he has never stopped for more than 20 seconds to watch anything on tv/computer)

When I first saw it, I thought what the hell is this?? But after the 5th time of watching it I was singing along and doing all PSY's crazy dance moves.
If you haven't seen it, take 4 minutes to enjoy.  If you have kids, play it for them, you'll be amazed how much they like it!
Warning:  This song is addictive [and fun!] and will be in your head all day.

I enjoyed reading a post about this song by a Korean living here in Atlanta.  Oh, and by the way, her design blog is great too!

Monday, October 15, 2012

No-Poo : Week Two Update

Well, I reached the end of week two no-poo, and I am still on board.  No stranger to grease and grime, my hair is holding up quite well.  I would definitely say that I am still in the "funky phase"  (de-greasing?) least I am hoping this is a phase.  

I "washed" my hair 3 times last week with the baking soda & apple cider vinegar (acv) rinse.  Afterwards my hair was soft, shiny and surprise...NOT greasy at all.  The below pics are before I "washed" my hair, 3 days after the last time.
3 days no poo
Not too bad when in the ponytail right?
 Once taken down, it gets a little worse.
looking a little more oily when taken down
And this next one is after brushing with the bristle brush from roots to ends.  A lot.  To distribute the oils. 
Not pretty, in fact, that is downright embarrassing.  Let me just assure you that I did not leave the house looking like this.  If I just put on a hat and you see the rest of my hair, you may be sold.  Look how lush and shiny it is.
Is that a little bit of waviness that I see?
At this point, I really don't foresee the no-poo making my hair curly, but I do think it will be healthier.

Craigslist Personal Shopper!

I have been thinking for a while about a potential business opportunity.  This week an obvious sign presented itself and confirmed there just may be a need.

Do you think you could you benefit from a Craigslist personal shopper?  Do you want to find unique pieces, with a story/history at discount prices?  Do you want the things in your home to look like they were collected over time instead of bought all at once in a store? A mix of old and new?

Maybe you do not enjoy "the hunt" for treasures?  You are not a "searcher"?   Maybe a little too  impatient to sift through crap until a gem presents itself?   Or maybe none of that is true, but you just don't have the time to search.  It does take time and patience.  And just like thrifting, Craigslist requires that you search often to get what you are looking for.  Does any of this resonate with you?  Keep reading.

This is how the story/obvious sign went.

 One of my readers has been wanting a campaign dresser for months.  Specifically a nightstand, but I think she would take any piece if the price is good.  (Right, Treff?)  Anyway, the other day she emails me a link of a 6 week old listing from Craigslist.  A [would-be] score of the century.

Not one, but five campaign pieces.  $100 obo.  Like I said, deal of the century.  As you can imagine, she was very upset, and kicking herself for not having searched before.  Look at them too, they seem to be in great condition.  A dresser, nightstand, cabinet, desk and shelf. (The long dresser is exactly like my green one.)  I would've drove to Ohio myself for this set (or begged paul's shuttle - ie: my dad - to bring).
At the time of publishing, the listing was still up!  I have gotten excited several times after seeing an ad only to find out it was already sold. Hello people! Take that shit down after your sell it.  Eventually it will expire, but boy is that annoying.

Anyway, back to the personal shopper.  This story could have played out differently had I been "on the job" searching for a campaign dresser.  Granted, this would have been tough to find with not one good search word in the whole ad.  Brass anyone?  But on the other hand, this is how you find the true steals!  This seller had no idea what this set could've gone for, or just didn't care.  Sometimes you just have to sift through the listings to find something special.  I can do that.  I do that.  Every. Day.

 By doing daily searches for my potential clients wish list items, I could find what they are looking for, email them the link and they could buy.  No searching required.  For an extra  fee, I could also negotiate the price (something I am great at) and arrange pick up.

If this service is not already available, someone will surely start now that they have read this.  I mean designers are buying great pieces for a deal and up-charging their clients, this would be a way around that.  It would be a great service for busy designers as well.

So since I am just in the "idea stage" I am willing to do some pro bono work.  If you would like a free trial, place your info IN THE COMMENTS BELOW (not on facebook please).  Tell me your city, and the item you are in search of.  Be as descriptive as possible.  I will be in touch!

Thursday, October 11, 2012

Postre al Limon {a lime creme dessert}

Let me start by saying that this dessert [in the words of my friend Janie] is sinful
Once you have a taste, it will be very hard to not finish off the whole dish. Seriously.  It happens. Be careful.
It's quick, easy and inexpensive to make.  And yes, sinful too.  Please let me know if you make it and how you like it!

1 can sweetened condensed milk
1 can media crema (in Mexican section) or  14oz half & half
1 can evaporated milk
2-3 packs of Marias cookies (also in Mexican section)  Could substitue animal crackers
juice of 7-10 limes

Put the 3 cans of milk and lime juice into a blender until mixed well.  Layer the cookies and milk mixture into a 9x9 glass dish, starting and ending with the milk.   Put in the freezer for at least 2 hours and take out approximately 30 minutes before serving. 

Spanish Version:

1 lata de lechera nestle
1 lata de media crema nestle
1 lata de leche evaporada carnation (clavel)
2 o 3 paqutes de galletas Marias
10 a 12 limones. (jugo)

Poner en una licuadora las 3 latas de leche y el jugo de los limones y batir por unos 4 minutos hasta que la cremita quede bien batida.  En un refractario vaciar un poco de la mezcla y poner una capa de galleta maria bien acomodadas que queden apretaditas, despues otra capa de la cremita y otra de galletas, asi sucesivamente hasta que llenes el refractario. Meterlo en el congelador por 2 horas y sacarlo a temperatura ambiente hasta que se ponga aguadito y a comer y disfrutar!   Riquisimo, rapido y barato!

Monday, October 08, 2012

Designer Dining Chairs?!

I know some of you think I am crazy for buying my Craigslist brass dining chairs.
 I actually went through a lot of second guessing after I had them home.  But I thought I would share what I found while browsing google images in search of inspiration for reupholstering them.
Milo Baughman Brass Base Dining Chairs
They look familiar, right?  You'll never believe what they are going for on 1st Dibs.
$4900 for a set of four!

I paid $185 for SIX CHAIRS!  Granted, mine are not the real deal, but the design is exactly the same.  This just re-affirms that my initial gut feeling was correct.  These are cool chairs.

Friday, October 05, 2012

I'm Going No-Poo: A 30 day Challenge

You probably know by now that I love a good challenge.
Something you may not know about me is that I have always wanted curly hair.
CRAZY curly hair.  I would wear it huge too.   No taming of the curls please.
I know, all you curly girls out there, I have heard you say it before.  It's a lot of work.
Living with straight hair all my life though, I would take the extra work for a built in style.  You have body, You have texture.  AND you can straighten your hair if you want too.

No.  Im not going to get a perm.  (if that was you were thinking) Been there done that.  I ruined my hair in high school with perms, a curling iron and hairspray.  A lot of hairspray.  Since then, I have got my hair highlighted/colored a handful of times, but have generally left my hair natural with minimal usage of product and blow-drying/ironing.  (This is partly due to my wanting healthy hair and part laziness)

A few weeks ago at the Atlanta Arts Festival, a lady came in our booth with the most gorgeous red curly hair.  I complimented her and she told me that I too may be able to get "naturally curly" hair.   

"Have you ever heard of No-poo?" she asked.  Ah, no.

She proceeded to tell us about someone she knows who had straight hair stopped using shampoo and ended up with curly hair!  That is really all I had to hear before I decided I would try it.

I thought of how my hair would does look after not washing it for a couple days.

I did some reading online and even though I was game to try not washing my hair at all, it turns out that you do "wash" your hair, just not with shampoo.  Get it? No-poo?

Baking soda mixed with water is the "wash" and apple cider vinegar with water is the rinse.
This method is extremely popular as of late and if you google "no-poo" you will find more than enough information.  I hate being last on the bandwagon, but here I am.

If you are intrigued too, Naturally Curly  is a perfect intro to no-poo.  Also, Melissa from Eco-Friendly wrote a great post listing the benefits of giving up the poo.

I think this flow chart from the crunchy wife though, may be the motivation you need to give the no-poo a try yourself.

The idea is this:
The chemicals in shampoo strip your hair of their natural oils, which then tells your head to produce more oil. Oh, is this why my hair gets so nasty if I don't wash it within 24 hours?  (thank god for tight pony tails and hats)

So even if my hair doesn't get curly, other no-poo-ers out there say I should at least expect:
  • more body/texture
  • less oily hair (after potentially gross transition phase when starting)
  • less frizz
  • softer, shinier hair
  • less $$ spent on hair (for me, only a $10 savings every couple months-but hey)
  • less negative impact on the environment
And while my initial interest in the no-poo experiment was to get curly hair, if all of the above happen, it will not be in vain.

How I'm going to No-Poo for my 30 day Challenge
I will "wash/rinse" my hair 3x per week with the following:
1 tsp baking soda to 1 cup water
1tbsp apple cider vinegar (ACV) to 1 cup water
I will brush my hair daily with a boars hair/natural bristle brush to distribute my natural oils from roots to ends. 

*I will not put any products on my hair, nor will I use a blow dryer.  (neither of which I ever do anyway)

I will report back to you weekly on my progress, with pictures.

Week One 
Tomorrow will actually mark my first week of no-pooing and I have to say, baking soda is an amazing product.  I didn't wash my hair for several days (just water rinsed) and it was a greasy mess.  On the 4th day I used the baking soda/water mixture.  My hair felt light and clean and seems to have more texture at the roots.  I washed again with the soda on the 6th day and used the rinse too.  I have also been brushing my hair every day.  So far so good.
Now, I didn't take a before picture last week, but I can tell you that it would be identical to this.  I might mention that my hair is pretty healthy. This is my natural color.  It does get quite greasy if not washed daily, and if I don't brush it, I would have dread locks in a week.  Seriously.  As you can see, it is not pin straight, but not wavy either.  Im hoping that is going to change!

Anyone else out there tried no-pooing, thinking of trying, or want to try it with me??
Come on it will be fun and I would love to have another partner in crime.  Treffry and Ernesto are on board.

Here is to healthy, non oily [maybe even curly] hair! 

Wednesday, October 03, 2012

The House of Craig

I have been debating changing the name of my blog to The House of Craig or maybe Craig's House.  What do you think?  You know why Im thinking this, right?

I am addicted to Craigslist. It's ridiculous.

This week marks one year that we have been in our house.  Over the last year I have collected many things from Craigslist that "need some work."  Not to mention items I have thrifted.  Unfortunately, I am not addicted to the "work" part,  just the hunt.
Remember these nightstands I bought last year?  I got them just a couple weeks after moving into our house.  This is what they looked like the day I brought them home.

I wish I had a proper "after" picture to share with you. But the only thing that would be different is that the ugly handles are gone and our TV is sitting on them.  Yep. They are now a TV console [instead of nightstands] because they fit perfectly between the two windows in our living room and I love their low profile, similar to the couch and chairs.

Someday Im going to paint them. Maybe white.  Maybe not.  I want two half circle handles one each one so it will look like one [gold] circle smack dab in the middle. Can you see it?

Also in the living room along the entry wall is this beauty.  A 72" solid wood dresser with brass handles.  Again, sadly this is the before and the after shot too. 
This is going to look amazing one day!  I go back and forth on what color I would like to paint it.  A bold color or maybe just a nice charcoal gray.  Opinions??

Back in February we bought a much needed new mattress and upgraded to a king.  Best decision we have made!  It is great having all that extra room, especially since our little mexi-can always starts his day by joining us in bed. 

I have wanted an upholstered headboard forever and after seeing Daniel's before and after upholstery job on a basic platform bed, I got to stalking.  Craigslist always comes through.  Could be why I am addicted to searching.....I know something will come of it. 

This is what I ended up with.  

Try to imagine a tufted headboard all that red wood covered with a rich charcoal velvet.
My imagination gets the best of me, which is why I have this House of Craig.

Another before and after (in one) is my dining room table, also picked up on [my favorite website] Craigslist.  It's nice and big and come with two leaves.  It was $60.  Not sure what to do with it, but I know I don't like the current finish.
Are you overwhelmed with my to-do list yet?  Wait, there is more.

A few weeks ago I was browsing "brass" under the 'furniture by owner' category (one of my regular searches) and saw a dining set with the coolest chairs.  I contacted the seller and they agreed to sell the chairs separately.  I offered what I thought was a fair price for 6 chairs and she accepted.
So without further ado, here they are!
 Something about the modern lines of these chairs grabbed me.  The metal is a brass color, but too polished.  That will need to change.  Also the hideous, worn 80's fabric is coming off.  
Yes, they need reupholstered.  Ugh!  But....with.... what will I cover them, dear Henry dear Henry? (anyone remember that song)   Oh another design dilemma.  Another project I know, but I will be sending these out to the upholsterer instead of tackling myself.  Must.  Find. Perfect. Fabric. Im shooting for a Christmas reveal, which means they could be finished by Spring.

Just so we end on a positive note here, I'd like to remind you of my campaign dresser that I finished back in January.
I scored this baby on CL for just $15.  It was in such horrible shape when I got it that Ernesto gave me a two week deadline to make it look nice. [or else he was throwing it in the trash].  I came through in just under three months! ha!

Yes.  A finished project.  I know this is something you are not used to seeing here, but times are a changin' my friends.


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