wan-na find something?

Monday, October 31, 2011

is it over yet?

despite my lack of enthusiasm for halloween, i just about melted when i got a gander at the bean all dressed up in the costume she'd chosen this year.  arrrrrrr, mateys!

although those shoes were not working, so we hit up payless and scooped up a pair of black boots that did.  seriously, so much better. 

i also had a fun order of cookies to make.  i'm no harry potter fan, but i think they turned out fairly well.  and my friend totally scored on an extra dozen of them, courtesy of my inability to do basic math.

the bean's school doesn't do halloween costumes.  instead, they have a pumpkin harvest party and encourage the kids to wear orange to school that day.  hey, whatever.  i don't really care.  but with a closet full of pink and purple, i decided to make her something to wear that would be festive and work with the theme of the day.  can you see where this is going based on the fabric i picked up?

using this tutorial (and totally winging some parts), i managed to cobble together a quick little pattern for what i had in mind. 

after i cut the pieces out and created a plan of attack as to what order i needed to sew them together in, it came together fairly quickly.  and although i was using a nice, stretchy knit fabric and had based my pattern on a shirt in her closet that she wears regularly, i thought i'd better have her try it on before i finished it completely.

yes, she is wearing her woody pajama bottoms with it.  ha!

i finished the neckline and sleeves (this was the first time i'd sewn in real sleeves, and i was pretty stinking proud of how well they turned out), added the buttons, and had her try it on again sans pajamas.  it's just long enough to cover her little butt, but not enough to pass as a dress.  guess i'll have her wear it with a pair of white leggings, despite the fact that we're well past labor day.  hopefully toddlers are exempt from that rule, especially on halloween.

i made some matching cookies to give to her class and teachers. at first they looked like this:

but they were kinda boring, so i added a little something to make them extra cheerful.

oh, and do you love her fuggs?

what i love is the look on her face.  just like her mama.

happy halloween!

Friday, October 28, 2011

mahalo, i guess

ever since our first food truckfest, the girls and i have been obsessed with hawaiian shave ice.  well, it really stems from trips to hawaii, but with the ridiculous cost of airfare, i can't even talk about that right now for fear of bursting into tears.  heh.

chasing the two trucks that serve shave ice is fun, but sometimes the craving hits and we're dejected to find that neither of them are anywhere near us.  one afternoon while MIL was home, we did hop in the car right after picking up the girls from school and hightail it all the way out to eagle rock, just past pasadena, for the get shaved truck.  probably a 25-mile drive, but oh, did it hit the spot.  and they have an actual store - but that's even farther away from us. 

so when i heard via twitter that tropical shave ice, our second option, was opening a shop in nearby west covina, i was stoked.  and after a midweek mall run (during which we tried lee's sandwiches for the first time - and definitely not the last), we made our way over for a frosty treat.

we drove around the strip mall looking for the shop and finally found it, with no sign save a small banner draped outside with the truck logo on it.  no splash, no dazzle, but who cares - it's shave ice!

there really wasn't much to speak of on the inside, either.  it was just a run-down former fast-food joint with a few souvenir-store pieces of hawaiian "decor" and peeling paint.  there was a girl sitting behind the counter with a calculator and an order pad, and the menu was just like the one plastered on their truck.

although they'd decided to share the space with a fellow hawaiian-themed food truck that offers yummy shrimp and rice plates like on the north shore of o'ahu.  mmmm.  but as i was stuffed with that delicious baguette sandwich from lee's, it'll have to wait till next time.

seemed like the same girl who took our order went back to make our ices, because it took forever, but it was worth the wait.

or was it?  it seemed that although the guys on the truck are pretty generous with the goodies, here in the shop was a different story.  sure, it was just a $.50 upcharge - just like in the truck - but the tiny spoonful of ice cream at the bottom was a big disappointment.  like, it was such a small serving we barely tasted it.  and when we complained via twitter, they brushed it off with a "sorry about that, we serve gourmet ice cream at $.50 for a small scoop."  i answered back and told them that the charge was the same on the truck for a way bigger serving and that we'd be skipping the shop from now on.

that's such a lie.  heh.  but it sounded good.  in any case, it's nice to know that there's something available nearby for when we really, really need our shave ice fix.  it beats chasing trucks or driving out to the valley or freaking torrance, anyway.

Thursday, October 27, 2011

cinnamon-y goodness

so although i've been putting out some really fun (some rather intricate) cookies over the last year-ish, sometimes it's nice to take it back to the old school and make some good old-fashioned snickerdoodles.  actually, i can't take credit for the idea - the teen texted me one morning, obviously having been hit with a major craving for some cinnamon sugary goodness.  and like the dutiful mom i am (not to mention, they did sound pretty darn good), i immediately went to the fridge and pulled out a stick of butter to soften.

the batter is simple - a basic cookie dough, chilled for about 15 minutes and then formed into balls and rolled into cinnamon sugar.  as you can see, i had a little help.

the fun part is pulling them out of the oven, all puffy and fragrant:

and then watching them deflate almost immediately:

a few seconds later:

look, they're flat as pancakes!

but very well-received indeed.

you know what else is good?  pillsbury cinnamon rolls.  i know homemade ones are far superior, but at 6am when i just want to send the teen to school with something warm and gooey, these fit the bill quite nicely.


Wednesday, October 26, 2011

bah, hallo-bug.

confession:  in all honesty, i really don't care for halloween much.

sure, when i was little it was super fun to dress up in costume and go door-to-door for the yearly candyfest.  and thanks to an expert seamstress for a grandma, i rocked some pretty awesome ensembles.  but as i got older, the appeal lessened more and more every year till i was damn near the ebenezer scrooge of all hallows' day.

it's been fun watching the teen go through the dressing up and trick-or-treating stage through the years, and the bean is finally getting the hang of the idea, too.  if not for them, i wouldn't even acknowledge the holiday at all (aside from ingesting copious amounts of candy corn and fun-sized candy bars for a month).  not to mention, it seems like the costumes get skimpier and skankier ever year.  ugh.

i don't think i ever went to a single pumpkin patch when i was little.  maybe that's why i think it's probably one of the lamest things ever.  i truly just don't get it.  it's a parking lot with bales of hay, grimy bounce houses requiring pricey tickets, bored employees, and overpriced pumpkins.  mind you, i get the photo op appeal, as pointed out by my friend dailygluttony - but the place is usually so damn crowded that you have people in the background in most of your shots anyway.  bah humbug.

that being said, i found myself taking the girls to two separate pumpkin-related things this weekend.  kidspace museum was having a pumpkin festival, and it sounded like fun.  so after the bean woke up from her nap, we hopped in the car and headed out to pasadena (still her favorite city - "mommy, can we go to pasadena?  pleeeeaaaaase?")

there were game and food booths, a snack shoppe, and bounce houses galore.

with kidspace being a nonprofit children's museum, i had no problem buying tickets for the various activities.  the bean was super excited.  the teen was...there.

of course, once she caught sight of this one, it was all over.  "mickey mouse clubhouse!" she squealed, and off we went to get in the long line.

obviously it was super popular, as evidenced by the sign that had been trampled on by hordes of stampeding disney-lovin' toddlers.

the line went fairly quickly, as the thing was ginormous and the attendants adhered to the strict 3-minute policy.  in no time, she was clambering inside and bouncing to her little heart's content.

and all too soon, her three minutes were up.  she's a good-natured kid who follows the rules, so when the attendants told her it was time to let other kids in, she scurried right out.

 then it was on to the next - her second all-time favorite:

when that three minutes was up, we headed over to the booths and let her try out a couple of easy games.  like, how much simpler can it get than picking out a couple of lollipops to see if there are any prize tickets attached to the sticks?

i didn't really get this one, but it looked like she was fishing for prizes.  whatever.  the attendant helped her out and she walked away with another lollipop, a pack of crayons and a little notepad.

the teen didn't leave empty-handed - she sipped on a lovely organic lemonade as she watched her sister's antics.

since we'd gotten there rather late and the festival was almost over, we headed to another pumpkin patch on the way home.

it didn't take long for each of them to pick out a pumpkin.

not wanting to shell out TWELVE dollars for more bounce house-ing, i let the bean talk me into this instead.

but those poor animals were sick of those pellets.  they sniffed at her hand, she would giggle, and they'd turn their heads and walk away.  or, in this case, were more interested in the cup she held.

a few more photo ops and ponying up $12 for two pumpkins, and we were outta there.

dude, i would've paid about half that at the grocery store.  but i did my duty as a parent - pumpkin patch, check.

the hub 45.0

happy birthday today to this guy: hopefully he won't kill me for any of those pictures.  ah well...happy birthday to the love of my life!