i've been dreaming up invitation ideas for the bean's upcoming first birthday party. and in the process, i've finally given in to something i've been resisting for YEARS:
a die-cutting machine. specifically, a quickutz revolution.
i found it on sale for $59 at a scrapbooking store (it's called "scrap -n-yap" - yeah, i laughed too), which is an awesome deal considering these things usually run around $90. it kind of reminds me of an old-school pencil sharpener. but instead of making your #2 nice and pointy, it makes really cool, intricate, detailed paper cut-outs of various shapes. you lay one of the magnetic dies on the platform, put a piece of paper on top, place a protective plastic mat over that, and crank away. when the platform makes its way through to the other side, you take the mat off to reveal a perfect die-cut. so cool!
i've already used it to fulfill an invitation order for a baby shower for BFF's new SIL. here's the mock-up i gave them to approve.
i kind of bit off of the invitation that my friend amber created last year for the shower the SFAMily threw for me, which i loved oh so much. except that instead of cutting each paper onesie out freehand, using a stencil and scissors, i took the easy way out and cranked 'em out in seconds. easy peasy (sorry, amber!).
i've been trolling ebay for discounted dies for this thing, and i've already spent a ridiculous amount of money on all sorts of fun shapes - alphabet sets, cupcakes, flowers, hearts, basic phrases like "happy birthday," palm trees. and i keep dreaming up all sorts of fun card ideas to make with these things. maybe i should get going on that etsy store i've been toying with for months after all.
and in other news, i've been driving the hub absolutely nuts with my obsession with getting an iPhone. even i have to admit, i'm getting a little ridiculous with it. i keep going back to the website that updates availability at the apple retail stores, dropping hints, talking about how much fun my friends are having with theirs, cursing my current phone. i think i'm just hoping that he'll get so sick and tired of hearing me jabber about this thing that he'll just come home with one. heh. wish me luck on that one.
lastly, in 35-ish hours, we'll be on a plane to paradise. i'm so freaking excited, i think i might actually start packing!
i have a habit of taking pictures with my phone, forwarding them to my e-mail, and then forgetting about them. so here's a plethora of photos from the last couple of months, in no particular order:
hanging out at my friend MommyBelle's house:
chillin' with the teen:
rockin' the giraffe print:
heading out to the beach:
lounging while shopping:
seeing the teen for the first time after finally getting her braces off:
my friend k adopted adorable leila, who hangs out in the front yard while k's at work. she climbed up onto this table, couldn't figure out how to get back down, and there she stayed for hours till k got home. awwww.
sunday was spent hanging out at the beach - newport, to be exact. it was brother wan's birthday, and he wanted to have dinner down by the water. originally, we were going to duke's in huntington beach, but when we called for a reservation, we were told that the u.s. open of surfing was going on this weekend. hence, they were completely booked. gah! so instead, we decided on tommy bahama's island grille cafe. yummy, safe, and more importantly, available.
the day started out gloomy as hell, even sprinkling on us a bit on our way down, but it was way better than the heat and humidity at home. we put the bean in the stroller and i covered her up with my new juicy hoodie to keep her warm.
as usual, we'd skipped breakfast and were hungry, so we decided to park and eat at rockin' baja lobster. we've been to their san diego location before, many many moons ago. brother wan and his friends, who'd arrived at the beach earlier (like, 7am. crazy boys), joined us for lunch.
after plowing through my surf and turf bucket - shrimp, crab legs, grilled chicken, and carne asada - sharing all-you-can-eat caesar salad, and slathering several fresh tortillas with their delish chile-honey butter, we decided to walk along the bike path and enjoy the sun, which had finally burned through the cloud cover.
the bean enjoyed rolling along in her comfy stroller and peoplewatching.
i ended up with some faaaabulous tan lines after that stroll along the beach. like, i'm still wearing a tank top...even when i'm not. joy. that's gonna be hawt on the shores of waikiki beach, yes?
we decided to head over to fashion island and stroll the shops for a while. i was half hoping to get to the apple store and sweet-talk the hub into picking up iPhones, but we were greeted by a sign that said "sorry, the iPhone 3G is not available today." boo.
instead, i drowned my sorrows in a nice cup of pinkberry. the hub shared his with the bean, who wrinkled her nose (but continued to open up like a little bird for more) with every spoonful.
i was powerless against the lure of another juicy couture store, so close by, and when i sheepishly admitted that i'd neglected to pack a jacket for the bean, he plucked one from the sale racks. um, and an adorable little terry dress, too. ha! she totally scored.
and then it was time to meet up with the wan family for brother wan's birthday dinner.
the bean knocked out in the 3 minute drive over from fashion island, and the waterfall next to her helped keep her asleep through most of dinner.
i debated between a cup of crab bisque and a nice salad (my usual), or the lobster grilled cheese and a cup of heirloom tomato soup. the latter won out, and it was delicious.
the dessert tray came out, and the hub made the executive decision of ordering one of each to pass around the table. yum!
the bean finally woke up, and everyone played "pass the baby." note how perfectly her new hoodie matched her grandma's top.
and that was that. we got home and crashed on the couch, all three of us. a wonderful weekend, indeed.
wait, did i say "shopping"? yeah. there's nothing like having a vacation to buy pretty new things for! whee!
friday the hub came home early to celebrate one of my favorite holidays: the first day of the nordstrom anniversary sale. you think i'm kidding, but this day has been circled in red on my calendar for weeks. heh.
i didn't actually find a whole lot of stuff - i picked up two dresses, a top, some tights, a cute red juicy hoodie, and some new laura mercier eye makeup. wow, when i look at that list, it sounds like a crapload, huh? let's just say that previous years have resulted in a bigger haul and leave it at that.
we also swung into macy's and picked up a cool new suitcase for the teen to share with the bean for our trip. it's by tommy bahama, and it's the only one i could get the hub to agree on that wasn't boring ass black. plus, it was half off! i dig it - it's very tropical and hawaiian-y. yay!
saturday had me up nice and early to get the bean ready for her first date with small fries, set up by her auntie monkey. if you haven't already, you can check out her recap here. i'm always reminded of what a horrible photographer i am when i compare her fabulous shots to mine, and we have the same damn camera! i've got no excuses. bleh.
we swung by and picked up auntie amber at her new casa (which is adorable, from the bit i was able to peek at through the front door - the bean was snoozing in the car), and i giggled a little at the box of pastries she brought along. i always knew we were sisters for real!
we met up with the monkey, parked the car, and we took off for tiara cafe, which i'd wanted to try for a long time. after perusing the menu, we placed an order for food to go, which we brought to the monkey's loft and chowed on while watching the babies play.
it was lots of fun watching the babies alternate between grabbing at small fries' toys (his mom was so way better prepared than the bean's crappy ass mom) and grinning at each other. the bean is quite the flirt - she kept touching poor small fries on his head, grabbing at his hand, squeezing his tushie.
a fun time was had by all, and we even managed to grab some pinkberry-esque yogurt before parting ways. oh! it was delicious. i want some right now.
when we got home, the hub was enjoying a cigar and reading a magazine in the front yard. he was hungry, and although i'd plowed through my lunch AND the yogurt, i was too. sheesh. so off we went, and as we often do, we ended up in old town pasadena.
after grabbing some yummy eats at sushi roku, we wandered through a few stores and ended up at the juicy couture store. the hub picked out some adorable tops for the bean off of the sale rack, while i wandered around the grown-up sale selections. and of course, i managed to find some cute stuff to try on.
after being inspired by FGD and the monkey's fabulous coats last winter, i tried this one on.
a sweet little beach coverup that was a bit lower cut in front than i originally thought, but i took the picture anyway.
i loved this maxi dress. it was light and airy, and - dare i say it? - it was even more comfy than my beloved gypsy05 maxi dresses.
i liked this chair. it says "for nice girls who like stuff." that is me, yes?
i ended up with all of it, plus a couple of things for the bean AND two cute little terry beach cover-ups for the teen. she's going to be so excited when she sees them - i think i'll just pack them in her suitcase and let her find them when we get to paradise. whee!
speaking of the teen, BFF's mom and i told them about BFF joining us on our trip last week. she'd spent the night at our house after the concerts, and when her mom came to pick her up after the final show, we decided to tell them. it was fun watching their jaws literally fall open as the words sunk into their brains, and the teen threw her arms around BFF in jubilation. they were SO excited, and i knew they would totally be counting down the hours.