Wednesday, March 18, 2015

DIY Distressed Baby Jeans


So the hot new trend right now is distressed denim!  You see it everywhere from distressed jeans to distressed shorts.  Etsy also has the cutest distressed denim for babies and toddlers.  I can't stand the cuteness!  But at almost $35 a pair, I knew I could make my little Matty Moo his own stylish pair for a fraction of the cost.

CurlyQsCounter Etsy Page
|what you will need|
+ pair of jeans (do not use the stretchy kind of won't fray correctly)
+ scissors
+ tweezers
+ pen
+ razor blade or box cutter
+ piece of cardboard that will fit inside the pant legs
|how to|
{1} If needed, cut your baby jeans to the appropriate length.  I decided to fold the bottoms, so I made the length a little longer.
{2} Flip the jeans inside out.
{3} Using a pen, mark out the areas that you want to distress/fray.  Since this was my first time distressing baby denim, I didn't want to go overboard.  So I only distressed a few spots.  I spaced out my lines by about one inch.  Remember the wider the lines and the larger number of lines, the larger the distressed area. 

{4} Place the cardboard piece inside the pant leg.  Make sure it is directly under the area you are about to cut.  Using your razor blade, make a clean horizontal line across the marks you made with your pen.
{5} Using your tweezers, slowly pull out the blue thread from the slits you made.  Do this until you pull them all out from across the slits.  I found it easier to start from the middle of the slit and then work my way out.
{6} Next, using your scissors randomly cut the very edge of back pockets.  Use the tweezers to pull a little of the threading out to get that distressed look.  Then throw your jeans in the washer and dryer to complete the look.
|final product|
|final product on my handsome model|


Friday, March 6, 2015

Baby and Mommy Favorites- MONTH ONE to MONTH THREE

Being a first time mom, you are bombarded with different baby gadgets and baby gear.  There are some really great products out there and not so great products out there.  I'll be making more baby and mommy favorites in future posts.  So stay tune.  Here are a few of our favorites...

{1} Eddie Bauer Diaper Changing Organizer: This organizer is just the right size.  It fits a small package of diapers perfectly.  I love the stretchable pockets on each side.
{2} Aden & Anais Swaddle Plus Blankets 4 Pack: These soft and thin muslin blankets are amazing.  You can use them from swaddling to a changing pad to lovey to carseat cover.  The uses for these blankets are endless.  They do come with a pretty hefty price tag, but it's well worth it.
{3} Pampers Swaddlers Newborn Diapers: The best diapers for the price.  We have no leaking issues with these, and you can always find them on sale.  I love the wet indicator strip on them too. 
{4} Boppy Naked Pillow with Slipcover: Here's another multi-use item.  When you are a parent you will love baby items with multiple purposes.  Hey, more bang for your buck!  You can use this from breastfeeding to tummy time to helping your baby sit up.  I love that you can wash the slipcover and it zips up and fits perfectly over the Boppy pillow.
{5} Pampers Sensitive Baby Wipes: I love these baby wipes!  They are fragrance free and are a nice thickness. 
{6} Carter Newborn Boys’ 3 Pack Short-sleeve Onesie: These are the best onesies for everyday wear.  They are a nice soft cotton, and they do not shrink in the dryer.  They also fit the best on Baby Matty.
{7} All Free & Clear Liquid Laundry Detergent: This laundry detergent is tough on stains and half the price of Dreft.  When I coupon, I can get this detergent for $1.99 each.  What a steal!  
{8} Baby Trend Diaper Champ Deluxe: This diaper pail is great because you can use any 13 gallon trash bag with it.  You don't have to spend money on refills specially made for a diaper pail.
{9} Baby’s Firsts App: This app is basically an easy technically advanced baby book.  You can use pictures taken with your phone and insert them using cute frames within the app.  The app has 300+ built in prompts that are scheduled based on seasons and key developmental milestones.  You can also share the pictures on Facebook, email, and Twitter.  This app is only available on iTunes.

{1} Carter Faux Denim Pull-on Pants: Matty's favorite pair of (faux) jeans!  They are soft and stretchable.  They are slim fit too, which helps with the trendy factor.  They also have an elastic band and you don't have to fool with any buttons or zippers.  We love them so much we bought two in every size.
{2} Petunia Pickle Bottom Embossed Boxy Backpack Diaper Bag: This diaper bag goes with us everywhere.  I love that it can be used as either a messenger bag or a backpack.  There are also tons of pockets both on the inside and outside (10 to be exact!).  The material used is really good quality and will last a long time.
{3} Nose Frida Nasal Aspirator: For those mom's that have a stuffy baby bear, this is a god send!  I know the concept seems gross, but this thing is so efficient and easy to clean unlike a bulb syringe. 
{4} Fisher Price Kick n Play Piano Gym: If you have a mini kick boxer like me, then your baby will love this activity gym.  Baby Matty just loves kicking this piano and hearing the music play.  He also likes hitting and grabbing the dangly toys on top.  He can spend 30-45 minutes in this thing. 
{5} Fan White Noise Youtube Video: When we are out of the house and running errands this Youtube Video has been a lifesaver .  When Baby Matty is fussy, I just play this white noise video and it calms him instantly.  It's also 11 hours long, so you can use it while he sleeps.  It's awesome! 
{6} Johnson’s Bedtime Lotion: The scent of this lotion is so calming and gentle on baby's skin.  I use it during Matty's "spa night" aka nightly baby massage, and he is in heaven!
{7} H&M Baseball Jacket: H&M has cute, trendy, and affordable clothes for little tots.  We especially like this jacket.  It keeps him warm and fashionable.

{1} Belkin NetCam HD Wi-Fi Camera with Night Vision: We love this "nanny" camera.  It was more affordable than the Dropcam, and it does the exact same thing.  The picture quality of the video is great.  This video also has nigh vision.  You can record video, take a snapshot, and talk to video all through your smartphone.  This gives us a peace of mind when someone's taking care of Matty in our house. 
{2} Little Baby Bum Youtube Channel: Matty just loves all the Little Baby Bum videos.  They have classic nursery rhymes and one's that I have never heard of before.  Matty's favorites are Wheels on the Bus, The Finger Family, and 5 Silly Monkeys.
{3} Ralph Lauren Sag Harbour Low Black Leather Crib Shoes: We love these shoes.  They are super easy to put on and the leather is so soft!  I like that the Ralph Lauren wording is stitched on the bottom.
{4} Natures Way Fenugreek Dietary Supplement: After returning to work, my milk supply dropped.  I take these supplements three times a day and I notice a big change.  I tried the Mother's Milk tea, but I didn't like the flavor and I didn't see a big change in my milk supply.  These supplements are easy to take and are great for the working breastfeeding mom.
{5} Circo Whales and Waves Musical Mobile: Here's another thing Matty is obsessed with.  He loves anything that is up in the air or ceiling (trees, lights, ceiling fans, etc).  So it's only natural that he would be obsessed with his crib mobile.  He can stare at this thing for a good solid hour.  It doesn't require batteries, and the whales on the mobile are pretty darn cute.
{6} Medela Pump in Style Breast Pump: When I returned to work, I was concerned with how I was going to express breastmilk.  This Medela pump is the bees knees!  It is so efficient and easy to use.  The parts are easy to clean and the pump itself is super compact!  
{7} Medela 3 pack Breastmilk Bottle Set: This is Matty's favorite bottle.  There are not too many parts to the bottle and they do not leak (unlike the Tommee Tippee bottles).  It also is compatible with my breast pump.  So buying these bottles were a no brainer. 
{8} Baby Jogger City Mini GT: We absolutely love our stroller!  We take it with us everywhere.  The maneuverability of this stroller is unlike any other on the market.  We love the one strap/one hand folding mechanism.  You can also adjust the handlebar for shorty mommies like me.  The umbrella also has awesome coverage unlike other strollers.  The wheels are also made out of rubber not plastic like other strollers. You can buy a car seat adapters to place your infant car seat on the stroller.  This stroller can be used from newborn to toddler!
{9} Lansinoh Manual Breast Pump: This was a recent purchase and boy am I glad I bought this.  This is perfect for when I'm away from Matty for more than four hours.  I can easily pump in the car, without all the cords and tubing the electric pumps have.  This breast pump actually has pretty good pumping mechanism for a manual pump.  It's easy to clean, compact, and simple to use.

Tuesday, February 17, 2015

Fat Tuesday Recipe: Bacon Wrapped Boudin Stuffed Jalapeno Peppers

Happy Fat Tuesday Y'all!  I can't believe Lent is already here.  Here's a delicious recipe for your Fat Tuesday Potluck!

|what you will need|

+ 2 packages of bacon
+ 15 jalapeno peppers
+ 2 links of boudin sausages (casing removed)
+ toothpicks
+ 1/2 tsp. of salt
+ large container of cream cheese (softened)

|how to|

{1} Wash and slice the jalapeno peppers in half.  Remove the seeds and inner vein.

{2} In a bowl, mix the cream cheese, boudin, and salt.

{3} Fill the jalapeno peppers with the boudin/cream cheese mixture.

{4} Slice the bacon slices in half.  Then wrap the jalapeno with the bacon halves and keep the bacon in place with toothpicks. Place them on a baking sheet on top of a drip screen.

{5} Bake them in a preheated 325 F oven for about 20 minutes or until the bacon is golden brown and crispy.


Wednesday, February 4, 2015

Sesame Asian Citrus Slaw Recipe

For our first date night (post baby), we decided to try a new restaurant out called Dak & Bop.  They are known for their KFC aka Korean Fried Chicken.  The chicken there was out of this world delicious.

KFC (Korean Fried Chicken) at Dak & Bop
One of the sides we ordered was an Asian Citrus Slaw.  It was delicious!  The cool and refreshing slaw went so well with the hot and spicy fried chicken.  This Asian inspired cole slaw would make a great side for a BBQ, potluck, or even a nice evening dinner at home. 
|what you will need|
makes about 4 servings
+ 1 Tsp Sesame Oil
+ Bag of Cole Slaw Mix
+ Can of Mandarin Oranges
+1/4 cup Milk (we used 2% milk)
+1/4 cup Mayonnaise (we used reduce fat olive oil mayo)
+ Salt, Pepper, and Garlic Powder to taste
|how to|
{1} Open Mandarin Oranges and drain most of the liquid.  Reserve about 4 tbsp. of the liquid.  Cut Mandarin Oranges into 1/2" pieces.  Reserving a couple whole pieces for garnish.
{2} Mix the sesame oil, milk, mayonnaise, mandarin orange liquid, salt, pepper, and garlic powder in a bowl.

{3} Open the bag of cole slaw mix and place it in a big bowl.  Pour the mayo-sesame oil mixture over the cole slaw mix.  Toss the slaw until the mayo mixture is well distributed.  Top the coleslaw mixture with a couple whole mandarin orange segments.  You can also top with sesame seeds.

We served the Sesame Asian Citrus Slaw with Sesame Soy Cross Cut Ribs.  Yum!

Tuesday, November 25, 2014

San Francisco Style Garlic Fries

For our yearly trip, Mr. Domesticated Diva and I decided to go to San Francisco!  We had a great time, we especially enjoyed all the wonderful food.  We heard so much about the SF famous garlic fries, but never had a chance to try them.  Even though we never had it in San Francisco, we were able to recreate them at home!

|what you need|
makes 3-4 servings
+ 5-6 russet potatoes (cut to about 1/2" sticks)
+ 3-4 large cloves of garlic (finely minced)
+ 3/4 cup of flat leaf parsley (finely chopped)
+ 3 tablespoon of grated parmesan cheese
+ 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
+ salt and pepper to taste
|how to|
{1} Preheat oven to 425 F.  Toss the cut potatoes in 1 tablespoon of olive oil, salt, and pepper.  Place fries in a single layer on a cookie sheet.
{2} Bake fries for 20 minutes. 
{3} Remove from oven and toss fries with the garlic, parsley, and parmesan cheese. 
{4} Increase oven temperature to 450 and bake for another 5-10 minutes or until fries are golden brown.

Wednesday, November 5, 2014

DIY Pottery Barn Knockoff- Chalkboard Pennant

I always knew I wanted to incorporate a pennant banner of some sort in Baby Matthew's nursery.  While shopping at Pottery Barn Kids, we came across this adorable chalkboard pennant...

But the $29 price tag was not appealing at all.  Being the Domesticated Diva, I knew I could replicate this for just a couple of dollars.  Here's my knockoff version of it...

|what you will need|
+ chalkboard paint
+ chipboard pennant pieces (found at Hobby Lobby)
+ chalkboard marker
+ ribbon of your choice

|how to|
{1} Paint the chipboard pennant pieces with the chalkboard paint.  Apply two coats.  Allow the paint to dry an hour between coats.
{2} String your ribbon through the pennant banner.
{3} Write the saying or name of your choice on the pennant using the chalkboard marker.
Here is the pennant used during our couple maternity photo shoot...
photo courtesy of JCI Photography

Monday, October 20, 2014

Baby Matthew's Nursery Decor- Made in Texas String Art

Everyone that follows my blog knows that I absolutely love anything Texas related.  I had to incorporate a little bit of Texas in Baby Matty's nursery.  Here's what I came up with...


I've always wanted to experiment with string art, but never got a good reason to until now.
|what you will need|
+ string (I actually used acrylic crochet thread)
+ wire nails (#18 x 3/4 in.)
+ wood panel (I used a 12 x 12 panel)
+ acrylic paint
+ hammer
|how to|
{1} Paint your wood panel with the acrylic paint of your choice.  Do two coats of paint.  Ensure your paint dries at least 2 hours between coats.  Allow the panel to dry overnight after the second coat.
{2} Print out the image you plan on making your string art.  Tape it to the wood panel.
{3} Draw dots around the outline of the images or letters using a pen or pencil.  These dots are where the nails will be hammered onto the wood panel.
{4} Hammer in the nails to the wood panel.  This is the longest step in making your string art.  Leave at least a 1/4" of the nail protruding out.
{5} Remove the image outline and tape leaving the nails intact.
{6} Now the fun part!  Start by tying the string or thread around one of the nails.  Then zig-zag your thread through the nails until the image or letters is filled in with the thread.  After you fill in the letter or image tie the string or thread to a nail to secure it. 
Here's the final product...