CLOSED - GCH (girls crochet headbands) giveaway!

 on Loretta: cream lace bloomers, pink tutu, pink crib shoe, slouch legwarmers, cream lace headband

The awesome people over at GCH (Girls Crochet Headbands) are giving one OT and ET reader a $30 shopping spree via gift certificate. We were so excited to get our GCH custom grab bag. I love the cute styles, dress-up items, and fun accessories. My love love love for the slouch legwarmers in both cream and pink is kind of unparalleled.

This contest is now closed. I will announce a winner this weekend! Congrats Maegan Morin you are the winner of this giveaway! GCH will contact you with details for claiming your prize! -L


autumn mix

Loved in this order: chocolate candy corns, regular candy corns, little pumpkins

So... my brain is kind of a mixed bag this week. We spent an entire year building up to Rob taking his math quals which happened last week. Boy what a bitch of a year and week those were. Well we found out last night that he passed! This means he is now officially in the PhD program, eep! We high fived, we drank bud light limes, and we watched a Boardwalk Empire. It was a little anti-climatic as far as rock star parties go, really. This kind of victory deserved an evening of sushi boats and sake bombs and scream-sung karaoke. Alas our life these days is pretty quiet and bud light limes are a nice zippy little treat anyways.  

I was thinking of sharing some of my favorite things I've come across in the past week because there are quite a few great little finds that seemed worth sharing. Brach's autumn mix topping the list, obviously. Also these good things...
I have a new blog crush and it is Kelly at the blog Let's Die Friends. She is a designer and has a cool job at this non-profit called Project 7 and I am just all for this girl and her mad skillz and cool job. She designed these tees that are $25 each and for each one sold 25 meals are given to those in need. I am hoping to snap one up when my next paycheck drops. 
Via Kelly's blog I clicked a link to Mini & Maximus and then died 5,000 times of a wish list brain explosion. It was really sad to die so many times so tragically. And awesome. I wish they weren't so pricey but if I find a rich guy's wallet and return it to him and he gives me a $64 reward for my honesty then you KNOW Otto's getting some new bottoms.
I really adore The Little Chickadee Etsy shop and will be ordering the above silhouette print for Otto and Loretta's bedroom very soon. 

And here are just some nice, simple dish towels and a great knit blanket we found and brought home from our Ikea trip. Hurray!

And then this Volkswagen commercial that makes me smile/cry every time I see it.

And I got my ticket to this and am very nervous and excited!  
I hope to see/meet some of you there! How exciting and terrifying. 

I am also loving the current Season of Project Runway. Wishing Rachel Zoe Project would just up and have another season already come ON! And watching Nail Files which if you watch it too, please tell me, because so far no one I know watches it and I LOVE IT and I FEEL ALONE... I really only watch tv in the early mornings from about 5 to 5:45 while I pump but them's my shows. 

Also my favorite song this week is this one. I lo lo lo lo lo lo lo lo lo lo lo lo love it. 



moccasins and boots for fall

My feet have grow-splosioned yet again. My dogs have been barkin' for months but it actually took me way too long to realize I needed new shoes. Like all summer. Like I've been coming home from work with sore, swollen feet every single day, feet that were crammed into my too-small shoes all day and being like, "man, my feet are acting crazy what is UP?!?!" instead of, "man, my shoes are clearly too small!"

But no longer! One much-awaited trip to DSW this weekend and my feet are all set for fall with the cutest pair of moccasins and new tall boots. Yipee! I guess I am going through a southwestern thing? Except I really don't think I am.

I've seen quite a few ladies who are much more stylish than me pulling off this moccasin thing lately and so when I saw these sweet softies by Rock and Candy I felt like maybe I could "bring it" enough to rock the mocs this fall. Two days in and going strong. Love them! Since I stepped out to Ikea in them I'll be linking up with Mandy at The Haps for her "Steppin Out" post this week.

The boots above were only $60 and look so much like these ones from Free People that I was coveting that I feel like I win some kind of cheapskate happiness award! 

So our weekend was pretty quiet. We did a road trip to Ikea today that left me a little exhausted and a little underwhelmed and also pissed at myself for opting not to get some curtains that I really should've gotten and now it's too late because Ikea is faaaaar away. But whatever. We did get Otto a twin bed that we'll paint & build next weekend and that's super exciting. 
And this little missy? Well, I just wanted to share this pic because this little missy is about as sweet as they come. 

pssst. If you wouldn't mind clicking the button on the left that says "Loretta says..." and then clicking the owl on the left, Top Baby Blogs is doing a reset today and I'd love to keep my spot in the Top 75. Thanks!


craziest thing; best picture

Rob took this photo on his phone while walking with Otto through our neighborhood. I guess a tow truck dumped this truck upside down (no one was in it when it got flipped) in the middle of the street. Otto's mind? Blown.
haha! Happy Saturday, guys.


parent is a verb

image via

I think one of my ultimate goals as a parent is to raise my kids to be thoughtful and considerate human beings. I don't care so much if they grow up to be great scholars, but I do care that they're critical thinkers and that they act with intention and with consideration of others. Sometimes you're out, any random place like the grocery store or whatever, and you see a parent interacting with their child(ren) and it just strikes you in this really sad way that the parent isn't treating their kid(s) with much respect. Like the parent is being shrill or whiny or impatient or just, well, shitty. And yes, I do judge. It's impossible not to. I scowl at those assheads and smile kindly at their kids and hope that my scowl/smile powers are like a little hand squeeze for those kids' souls. And whenever this happens I just get really upset and introspective. Do these parents realize or even care that the way they're treating their kids is actually a hurdle in those kids' paths to greatness?

Being a parent is inconvenient pretty regularly. I see the tradeoff as the joy/honor of being in the company of  these pure, amazing, weird little people and helping them become the best selves they can be. If you think it's fine to make them feel bad for inconveniencing you, for taking your time, then I kind of want to chop your head off. Is all.

There is nothing I treasure more than getting to know my kids and actively parenting them. My Otto is the most tender-hearted, inquisitive, creative little guy. My Loretta lives life balls out. They both have my full respect. When they talk to me I will always do my best to listen and ask questions. When they need something I will always attempt to help them or help them to figure it out for themselves. Sometimes I won't get enough sleep or a shower or a haircut before my hair starts looking like all kinds of shiz and I will have ugly eye circles and be smelly. Often I won't get to be on Twitter, or texting, or even writing this blog when I want to. Sometimes it will feel like too much and I will cry my eyes out, that's happened a few times lately just mostly because I'm so tired, but I'm not going to lose sight of the goal. Because look at this amazingness.
I get the honor of cultivating this amazingness. I am so lucky and my kids are so loved and they know it and if I have anything to say about it they will always know it. Everyone's kids should. Wouldn't that be awesome? That would be so awesome.


currently | v. 2 plus cartoon

last night was such an odyssey i almost don't have words...

turns out i am a super-slow drawer using NEW FANCY PAINT coupled with that i have to thumb-draw this shiz on my laptop... but you get the idea. an emergency trip to Buffalo Exchange for pants (grabbed 10 pairs, tried on while baby-wearing, had sales girl cut tags off first pair that fit so i could wear them outta there, and then SNAP!) we jammed to the grocery for a dessert to share at the picnic and we were only 45 minutes late to the meet-and-greet first-of-year get-together at Otto's school last night (he didn't notice, hurray! will purposefully be arriving 45 minutes late next year). 

so instead of finishing this post in the graphic novel style, i'm going to quick participate in Randalin and Wendy 's weekly "currently" theme. currently i am

Wishing... the next five days were history. please send positive thoughts for Rob as he takes his qualifying exams. 

Reading... lots of stuff at work, nothing at home. 

Eating... sweets as part of this new gig of mine at Sugar Loco. yum! i should have some links to reviews to share with you very soon but i learned a great lesson last night which is that if i eat 2 enormous cookies right before bed and then nurse baby there may be a 2 hour window of cuddling a punchy, rolly, arm-flaily wiggle worm in the middle of the night that is super, really, a lot not restful.

Anticipating... this time next week when we should be feeling all kinds of calm and maybe even planning a weekend Ikea trip to Portland to get Otto a bed on stilts.

Missing... my friends who are scattered all over the world right now and my family who are mostly all in a single location that i wish we were much closer to than we are.

TGIF friends, may my little family just hang in there with the chaos for another 5 days. xo!


wordless(ish): first bath together

definitely the first of many 
i believe you are looking at our new bedtime routine. Loretta was mesmerized and totally mellow. Otto kept himself completely happy and busy for almost a half hour! i took Loretta out after about 10 minutes and we cuddled while Ot finished his play. she was all squeaky clean and towel-wrapped and honey smelling... it was just magic. she peed on my jeans but that's ok... i threw on some of Rob's thermals i found in a box and i do declare: guy thermals are the next Call Me Maybe! so good. 

anyways, then they both went right to bedtime routine and lights out. and i got to have midnight pizza and ranch and coke zero with my studying hubs. pretty great evening :) 


greetings autumn, i'm gonna own you!

or something...
first tights of the season, my friends! how i greeted them with mixed feelings. so much love and yet, these cooler days and downright chilly nights mean autumn is officially on the way and soon the horrifyingly big sun (did you know the sun is like a million times larger than earth? i just heard this and spent a good chunk of time looking at google images of "sun earth scale" and am dazzled. that is nuts big) anyways that big warm bright guy will pack up his duffel bag full of sleeveless summer 2012 tanks and blow this popstand for the next 9 months while the grey ass rain sets in. even though i love tights so so much, i just don't think i'm ready for autumn just yet.
there are some things about this upcoming autumn that i am pretty excited about though. i have this almost freed feeling when i think about it. Rob will be taking his qual exams over the next couple of weeks and once those are over, providing he passes (eep!), then he will simply be around more, going forward. and that will mean the world to me. i've missed him and i will also value having him here more to help me divide and conquer these little kids of ours. they can be a real handful some days as wonderful as they are.
here are some of the other things i'm looking forward to about fall...

boots   my feet grew nearly a halfsize and/or got a bit wider with my pregnancy. i've had to get rid of so many shoes i really love because they kill my feet now. lame! anyways, one thing i'm going to do really soon is invest in a great pair of boots. tall, flat boots that look great over jeans and with tights and a skirt or dress. i love these and these but they are both a little pricey. hmmm. i was also inspired by James' recent post about simple style, do you read her amazing blog?

sweets   i am so excited to share with you that i am the newest contributing writer over at Sugar Loco! i'll be doing occasional reviews of different sweets and maybe even sweet shops in the Eugene and Portland areas. i'll let you know each time i have a post up over there. in fact i am sampling some desserts for a review as we speak and have been all day! this is gonna be a sweet gig!

fitness   so here we are six months post partum and i realize i really need to get my booty in gear. i'm not talking about going on a diet (see "sweets" above) but i do want to start exercising every single day. all days! all of them! my body is close enough to my normal weight but i don't know, it just feels wishy washy and really is the dumpiest it has ever been. just to be real here: i have boobs of different sizes flapping around well below the area where boobs should be; my stomach is squish city, and there is an arm situation. so my plan is to keep weights and sneakers in this little cubby in our living room and every evening after the babies are asleep i will put on my sneakers and grab those weights and exercise to the TV for at least 20 minutes. and i'd also really like to start jogging again, even if it's just once a week. and going to weekly hard core yoga with my friend Emmeline (and then treating ourselves to fountain coke zeros on the way home, yes!). so that is the fitness plan

::two thumbs up, scared smile::

this old house   everything in its place. a twin or full sized bed for Otto. and some actual decorating. fuck yeah.

yes i can!   we finally have room to do things in the kitchen and i am so excited to learn how to can things. preserves, salsas, pickles, fruits, butters... all of the things! i have so much excitement in my heart about this canning business.
how cute is this book i found on Pinterest? but i will probably just dig around at the thrift store... i bet they have ten million books on canning.

question ♥ for all of you canners out there, can i just buy mason jars at the thrift store willy nilly? are the lids all universal so you just buy new lids each year or how does that work?

lastly ♥ i think it's high time i figured out how to do my makeup. i've been doing it the same since i was 20 and i'm soooo not 20 anymore. i need to learn how to put darker makeup on my eyes so they don't look so squinty and tired in pictures. and i want to stop hating my face. i just have forever cringed when i see pictures of myself and i hate that. i'm 34. a mom of two gorgeous kids. a happy wife. a successful business woman. some people even think i tell good jokes. it's stupid that i can't just shut up and like my own face. the people i think are the prettiest are often people who don't have traditionally pretty faces, but their confidence and personality shines through and that equals beauty. i need to channel that somehow, and just kind of relax. i always wish i could put cute/fun pictures of myself on this blog like some of my favorite bloggers do on their blogs. but whenever i try to get pictures like that they just look awkward and i know it's because i feel awkward about being photographed. so i want to get over that. being more comfortable in my skin would feel so amazing. now, how do i do it? i am hoping the first step is darker eye makeup, haha.

sooooo... those are my plans for owning autumn. do you have anything fun in the works? boots? ;)