Calling in for Reinforcement

It’s official. I am a bona fide word nerd. I’ve spent the better part of my morning at Amelie’s penning the verse for Mia’s birthday party invitation. Once again, I am calling in for reinforcement. You were all so helpful in choosing the font for Ginny’s baby shower invitation that I am now enlisting your font suggestion for Amelia’s tea party invite.

Do you like…

Option A

Option B

… or Option C

You decide…. I’m worded out!

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Let Them Eat Cake… Pops!

Remember the scene in the movie Patch Adams where the sweet old lady confesses that her life-long fantasy would be to wade in an entire swimming pool full of noodles? Well, my version of that fantasy involves cake frosting. It’s my one vice. I can take or leave cookies, candy, even chocolate….. but cake frosting? Not on your life. And what’s up with the people who eat just the cake and abandon their frosting. Are you mad?! If you see me clearing the dishes at the next birthday party or shower, chances are I’m actually plundering all of your plates of left over frosting. Don’t judge me. You can have your fantasies and I can have mine.

Like I said, I am making preparations for a very special birthday coming up. No, not my own. The only thing I care to do for my thirty-first {ugh 31….. so unsexy} is watch Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 2. {Well, that and eat cake frosting}. I know… I know… isn’t it time I acted like a grown up? No, my sweet Amelia is turning 1 on August 5th and I am planning a tea brunch for the ladies! First things first of course…. the cake!

I’ve been seeing these cute little treats everywhere lately and now thanks to Bakerella, I can make them myself.

Check out these tea pot cake pops. How perfect is this!

{image via  Cake Cre8 by Debbi-lee}

And for the dad and the older brother …

  Angry Birds Cake Pops by The Girl Who Ate Everything

I can’t wait to make my cake pop bouquets. Wish me luck!

Home from the Beach

Is it just me or is it ten times harder to get back in the swing of things after spending a week at the beach? I moving just a little bit slower than normal pace today. Sounds like a case of the Mun-days.

As promised, here’s a few pics from our trip to Myrtle Beach.

This is Mia’s favorite new face {and I must say, mine too}. She makes it whenever she’s really excited about something. In this case, it was the sand between her toes.

However, she was not at all happy when I put her in the water. We sat right at the edge as the waves rolled in and she fussed the whole time. Like I said, we may have better luck with camping.

I couldn’t get Salem to stop rubbing his eyes long enough to snap a family picture, but can you believe that he held on to those straws {his drum sticks} for dear life the entire time he was in the ocean with his daddy.

I just might have to make this shot my Christmas card this year!

This is one of my favorites. We’re all making the same face!

It was a successful first beach trip for the Beasleys, and we’re sporting the sunburns to prove it. I’m cooking up some ideas for a very important birthday that’s right around the corner, and I can’t wait to share them with you!

Here’s to hoping you’re moving a little quicker than we are this week!

 

 

Have a Great Weekend!

We finally made it home! We had a great week in Myrtle Beach this week {pictures to come}, but we’re so happy to be back in Charlotte. I absolutely love our life here. The gourmet burgers are on the griddle and Elmo uses the Potty is on the tube. Ah! It feels good to be home. 

Have a great weekend, Everyone!

Mothers Speak: A Dream Fulfilled

We’re almost 48 hours into our beach work-ation and I’ve already cried once. OK…twice. Have you ever been so careful to pack everything you need down to the last bobby pin and you get to your destination only to realize you left something major behind… like your children? That’s exactly how I felt as soon as we got to Myrtle Beach. Clark and I have formulated our travel routine down to a science. I pack the bags. He loads the car. I unpack our suitcases and scope out the nearest WalMart while he set up his rig for soundcheck at whatever venue we happen to be playing that night. You could say when it comes to traveling, we’re pros. However, when you throw two children into the mix, our scientific workability utterly dissolves. The meltdown began on Tuesday night at 15 minutes before call time with two little people looking at me like, “Excuse me, did you forget something? Contrary to popular belief, we don’t love music more than food.” It was at this point it dawned on me, and not a moment sooner, that we forgot to pack the most important thing: the road nanny! And I call myself a planner for crying out loud… a shop-for-Christmas-in-August kind of planner. What did I think they were doing to do? Snack on guitar picks backstage and snuggle up next to Clark’s amp while drifting off to dreamland? Thankfully, an angel from Heaven disguised as my dad just so happened to be in town and took the kids for the night. When Clark and I arrived back to the hotel after the event, they were snug in their bed… bellies full with no amp in sight. Needless to say, I have hereby turned in my microphone for the rest of the week and am currently working on a new gig,,, how to get my ten-month-old and my pre-schooler to nap in the same hotel room. I tried to give Mia a morning nap today by locking Salem and I in the bathroom with nothing but a set of Chic-Fil-A straws as makeshift drumsticks and Phil Collins First Farewell Tour in French. That lasted about 20 minutes. Clark says we’ll laugh about this one day. I say… BOOK THE FRIGGIN’ NANNY!

Here’s the honest to goodness truth. I can remember the point at which I was ready to pack up the life of a traveling musician and start a family. Granted, I was losing my hearing in a Korean hospital and highly medicated that particular moment, but something deep inside me was at rest knowing that I had fulfilled a dream up to that point, and I was ready for a new, less public, chapter of the story. I’ve talked to many moms-to-be who think that having children will compete with their plans and dreams to such a degree that they become empty, miserable, and resentful half wits with little more to contribute to a conversation than the cost comparison of Luvs vs. Huggies… that somehow motherhood is the equivalent of creative and intellectual suicide. Don’t get me wrong. Right at this very moment, Operation Naptime consists of me sitting on a cold tile floor in the hotel kitchenette while Salem is around the corner in his pack-n-play singing “Ee-I-Ee-I-O” at the top of his lungs. Quite a far cry from singing before a crowd of 20,000 with my face plastered on a jumbotron. Do I ever miss it? Yes. Would I ever trade the audience I have with my kids for all the packed arenas in the world? Not on your life.

So lets get real for a moment. What dreams or plans did you sacrifice by having children? Do you feel cheated or resentful? {Don’t be shy. You can comment anonymously}. Or has becoming a mother provided you with a sense of mission and fulfillment more than you had originally bargained for? Are you somewhere in between? Is there something you still aspire to do that you hope to one day fulfill when the kids can find their own dinner and they no longer need quiet on the set to fall asleep?

Speaking of which… mission accomplished! Apparently a couple of rounds of “Old McDonald” does the trick. They’re both sound asleep. Too bad. Just when the tile floor was getting cozy…

The Beasleys Hit the Beach

This is Mia’s first trip to the beach. Sadly, she’s not amused. My little adventurer clung to me desperately as we waded knee high in the water while Daddy and Brother braved the waves thirty feet ahead of us. Maybe we’ll have better luck with camping. Tune in for a tale of professional stupidity in tomorrow’s installment of “Mothers Speak”. It’s still a bit fresh for me to recap, so until next time…

20110622-041217.jpg

Like Father, Like Son

 

{image via Chic Couture Boutique}

We’re heading to the beach today! It isn’t exactly a vacation…. more of a work-ation. But we’re going to try to squeeze every ounce of fun and relaxation out of it. I should be packing, cleaning, wiping my children’s jelly toast faces, but instead I’m enjoying my second cup of PG Tips and “window” shopping on Etsy. Why didn’t I see these Daddy and Son Tie Shirts before Father’s Day? I know why. Because Clark wouldn’t be caught dead! Ha!

I’ll be sure post updates from our beach trip. Have a Happy Tuesday!

 

 

Another Target Episode

Happy Monday, Everyone! I hope that your Father’s Day was glorious! Ours certainly was. {To catch a glimpse of our special day, click here.} The Baked Fried Chicken was a hit, and I even threw in some of my mother’s famous Italian Canolis for dessert. ‘Twas the way to both the Southern and the Italian man’s heart.

{*Note: The following story is even funnier if you read the post, Toothpaste and Concealed Weapons.}

I went to Target last Thursday {for yet the third time in one week} to pick up a few Father’s Day cards. I had a very small window of time to choose and purchase the cards, address them with warm and thoughtful sentiments, and pop them in the post so they would be sure to arrive before Sunday. After about 30 minutes of weeding through Hallmark’s finest on the $2 rack, I had read just about enough BBQ grilling and sports references, “#1 Dad earns 24-hour rights to the remote control”, and disgusting punch lines about Dad’s noisy bodily functions to last me until next Father’s Day, thank you. I made some semi-respectable selections and proceeded to the nearest check out lane. The cashier looked about as thrilled to be working at Target as she was about her self-tanning experiment gone awry. “That will be $32.43”. Now, I’m no math whiz, but I’m pretty sure that 4 dads and 2 grandfathers at $2 a pop do not amount to that much.

“But I found these on the $2 rack.”

A look of contempt that said, “and that’s my problem because…”

“You see, my infant is home with my husband, and I need to get these in the mail today, so I don’t have time to search for new cards and I’m not paying….”

As I was halfway through my compelling story where I all but signed the word o-v-e-r-r-i-d-e, when I realized that Magda wasn’t about to budge. Not only that, but all of her non-verbals indicated that she wasn’t about to make my life any easier. She flipped on the register emergency light as she huffed out from behind her post and stomped ahead of me toward the greeting cards. I’m not so sure at this point things are going to end in my favor. But there it was– a display 3 shelves deep with “Father’s Day Cards” spelled in big bold letters with a $2.00 price tag beneath each row. She smugly points to the microscopic print above the amount that says, “Graduation”. Apparently someone was more interested in their smoke break, and therefore mixed up the Father’s Day and the graduation card displays.

Now, I’ve never been one who prides herself a master in the art of persuasion, so I had to think fast. Do I use…

Flattery? “My, aren’t we looking especially sun-kissed this afternoon”.

Sarcasm? “Aren’t you people called Target Team Members?”

Guilt? “You wouldn’t deny a man’s dying wish to receive a ‘King of the Grill’ card from his grandson now would you?”

Intimidation? “Don’t mess with me, lady. I’m packing.”

But at the risk of losing my Christian witness, I just said, “can I speak to your manager?”

Magda’s face went from brown to red as she stormed up to who I assume was the store manager. She carried on like a chihuahua about “this lady…. she insists… it clearly says ‘graduation’…. ”

And then at last… sweet justice and vindication wrapped up in one little word…

Override.

I beamed.

I could have kissed her.

I didn’t.

I just smiled and paid for my freshly discounted Father’s Day cards–the taste of triumph still fresh in my senses as I drove to Ginny’s house. I couldn’t wait to regale my epic victory to which she replied, “You’re one of those, aren’t you.” Translation: “You really need to get a life, my friend.” Gotta love friends that keep you humble.

Here’s to hoping you get out more often than I do.

Baked Fried Chicken

As you very well may know, I married a southerner. Now me being Italian, and a Yankee, this has made for some rather interesting marital moments, particularly in the food department. I had never even heard of a “meat and three” before we met and sweet tea? Besides the fact that I never acquired a proper taste for it {way too sweet for me}, I’d be lucky to find it served in a local restaurant in Central Florida.

This Father’s Day, I’m hosting not only my Southern Sweetheart, but my very Italian, very Yankee father. So what’s on the menu? Fried Chicken and Italian Stuffed Shells. I figure that ought to please all the dads in my house. What do you think?

Confession. I’ve never made fried chicken before in my life… until tonight. I thought if it is going to be on the Father’s Day menu, we ought to at least have a trial run.

We interrupt this program for a brief taste test…

Well, the South surely has risen again… in my kitchen anyway!! This recipe is most definitely blog {and Father’s Day} worthy!

Baked Fried Chicken

2-3lbs of hind quarter chicken legs

milk/egg mixture

1/2 cup butter {one stick}

1 cup flour

1 Tbls. seasoned salt

2 tsp paprika

3/4 tsp pepper

1/2 tsp salt

Prepare: Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Beat egg and add to milk {just enough to coat chicken} in a gallon ziplock storage bag. Soak the chicken for 20 minutes. Spray a large baking dish with non-stick cooking spray. Put the butter in the baking dish and heat it in the oven until melted. Mix flour and seasoning together in a separate gallon ziplock storage bag. Shake each piece of chicken in seasoned flour. Place chicken {skin side down} in the buttered baking dish. Bake for 20 minutes. Turn chicken over and bake an additional 20 minutes.

Finger lickin’ good!!

Father’s Day Top Ten

Top Ten Reasons Why I LOVE Clark Beasley

-10-

He removes the black olives off my salad without me even having to ask.

-9-

He loves Harry Potter more than I do.

-8-

He is… hands down… the most brilliant musician I’ve ever known.

-7-

He once called out to Brooke Sheilds at a U2 concert in a moment of star-struck insanity.

-6-

He gets really honest when he’s had too much to drink.

-5-

He doesn’t leave his beard shavings in the bathroom sink.

-4-

He gets giddy about guitar gear… {and Brooke Shields}

-3-

He makes really pretty babies.

-2-

He’s never made anyone feel stupid for mistaking him for Mac Powell.

And the #1 reason why I love Clark Beasley…

He picked me!

I love you, Sweetheart! Happy Father’s Day Week!

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