{Locals} Arizona Restaurant Week Preview

Thursday, May 9, 2013
I feel like I'm always apologizing for my sporadic posting but as I know many of you can relate, life gets in the way of these things. Sorry about that. I've been busy, busy with my other job but wanted to pop over here and share with my local friends that the most edible time of year is fast approaching! Arizona Restaurant Week (May 18th through 27th). ARW gives food lovers the opportunity to enjoy a prix-fixe dinner at a number of participating Arizona restaurants. Seriously, don't miss out on this. Jason and I love to eat out but with two little guys and a limited budget, it doesn't happen as often as we like. ARW is the time of year we make it a point to get out and try a new place - we are never disappointed. Ever.

I was invited to attend a preview the other night (how lucky am I?) and sample some of the offerings from four different valley restaurants who are participating. All of the restaurants were amazing - totally different vibes and I had a blast shooting photos of them.

You can find a full list of participating restaurants here.

Book your sitter and try something new! Trust me - you won't regret it.

DIY Heart Pillow Cover

Wednesday, January 16, 2013
I am not one to go overboard for Valentine's Day. It's a fun day and the kids love it but I don't think I've ever decorated my home in hearts or anything like that. Until now. I'm a minimalist by nature but who can resist a little (or big) hot pink heart here and there? Not me.

This tutorial is SUPER easy and is a quick way to add some pop by dressing up a plain pillow cover.

What you'll need:
  • A plain pillow cover (I prewashed mine). If you don't have one on hand and don't want to buy one, there are a ton of great tutorials online for sewing pillow covers (I'm not that ambitious).
  • Pillow insert (both my pillow cover and insert came from IKEA but you can find them all over)
  • Felt - I used Rainbow Classic eco fi felt on this one because I'll probably need to wash it
  • Sewing machine (you could always hand sew it if you don't have a machine)
  • Scissors, pins, and paper

Getting started:

My pillow cover measured 20 x 20 so I taped four sheets of paper together to measure the same. I hand drew a heart on the paper. You can  get a heart template online but I like the wonky style of a hand drawn heart.

Use your template and cut out the heart from your felt.

Place your heart on your pillow cover and pin it into place (be sure to pin it to just the top of layer of the cover).

Slide the opening of the cover onto your sewing machine arm and sew into place. This part was a little tricky because my pillow cover is really thick so I really had to maneuver it around the arm of my machine. Be extra careful to only sew it to the top layer of the cover.

Stuff your pillow inside and you're finished.

Super easy and fun. Quick enough and inexpensive enough that I'm happy to have it out for just a few short weeks.

Let me know if you have any questions. Cheers!


Friday, January 11, 2013
A few days after Christmas, my Finley turned six. The tiny baby with the giant head who could barely wait to make his grand entrance, is now SIX YEARS OLD! I didn't expect that six would be such a big deal for me but it is. It's as if overnight he has become more thoughtful, patient, mature, and caring. I am liking six very much (but I'll try not tempt fate because he's only been six for a couple of weeks). 

Love this little guy.

And on a totally separate note, I am starting to feel a bit crafty again so I'm thinking that a tutorial (or two) for Valentine's Day is in order. Until then, you can check out some tutorials from last Valentine's Day here, here, and here.
Tuesday, December 18, 2012
Hello! Remember me? I used to blog here once upon a time. I've been totally absent from the blog and I apologize for that. Just taking a little break from things to soak up my family and prepare for Christmas.

Wishing you and yours peace, comfort, love, and joy this holiday season. 

We have to wait a whole 'nother year

Thursday, November 1, 2012
Finley is so bummed that we have to "wait a whole 'nother year" to go trick or treating again. We had an awesome time and I think the boys would agree it was the best Halloween yet complete with great food, family, crazy festive neighborhood, haunted house, and a boat load of candy.

Fall Break at Disneyland

Monday, October 15, 2012
The boys had their fall break from school last week so we took them to Disneyland for a few days. We waited until they were a little older so it was the first time for both of them. The experience couldn't have been any better for us. The boys totally rocked it - they were agreeable, patient, excited, happy, etc. They were back to their normal selves when we got home. ;)

We did have a few minor mishaps along the way including a mad search for deodorant (who forgets to put on deodorant before a long day at Disneyland??) and a wardrobe malfunction on Splash Mountain.

We had enough time that we were able to go on most rides and see the attractions that we wanted to. The boys loved every. single. bit. of. it. Each ride we went on was their favorite. One of the highlights was visiting the new Cars Land at California Adventure. You really feel like you're walking around in Radiator Springs (along with a gillion other people). Pretty cool.

Although the kids were troopers, we did a lot of resting and sitting around waiting for parades so that we didn't completely wear them out. 

Our last day there we had a Magic Morning so we were able to get into the park an hour early. We managed to squeeze in several rides and finished up our day with a butt kicking to the dark side.

Overall it was an amazing Disneyland experience for our family. Looking forward to doing it again in a few years.

Tap the Cask

Monday, October 1, 2012

We spent some time this weekend at our favorite little escape here in Arizona  - Page Springs Cellars. They hosted a "Tap the Cask" event for members and we were treated to a discussion about harvesting and fermenting led by winemaker Eric Glomski. By far, the highlight of the day for me was getting to spend time in their cellar. The lighting was definitely a challenge but I had fun photographing (and tasting) barrels upon barrels of some really remarkable wines.

The boys even tagged along with us and spent the afternoon fishing, playing bean bag toss next to the vines, LEGOs on the deck, and reveling in the attention of the super friendly and welcoming PSC staff. As usual, we didn't want to leave but are looking to our next visit again in the near future.

Happy Monday.