Monday, August 19, 2013

Made it Myself Monday-- Tie Dye

I am known to be pretty crafty.  While the left side of my brain loves to create, the right side of my brain hates to get everything so messy.  So, when we take on a craft project, I try to be well organized so the project is smooth and tidy.

KF had her good friend spend the night last week and I pulled out one of my pending projects to try. Sharpie Tie Dyeing.  Leave all those buckets, dye, and rubber bands behind, this is faster and cuter (in my opinion).

Here is what you will need:

  • Tee Shirt (we used oversized for nightshirts)
  • Pom Pom Trim (optional)
  • Sharpies (we used the new NEON version)
  • Red Solo cups
  • Rubbers bands
  • Rubbing alcohol
  • Medicine Dropper


  1. Slip a plastic cup in-between the front and back of the tee shirt.  When you find a spot that you like, pull the fabric taught over the lip of the cup and put an elastic band around the cup.  I usually place about three to four cups in the shirt at a time.
  2. Use your sharpies to draw designs.  These designs will "spread" with the rubbing alcohol.  We made snowflakes, hearts, and scalloped borders along the outside to give the designs a circular feel.  
  3. Drop the rubbing alcohol on the design.  If you use too much, it will just go into the cup (love that!).  Watch the design transform.  At this point, if you want more color, let it dry and add more designs and more alcohol.
  4. I used a hairdryer to dry as I went.  This takes about one minute (also love).
  5. Keep moving the cups and designing until you have a design that you are pleased with.
  6. We sewed some pom pom trim to the bottom of the shirt just to make it even cuter.  If you have a sewing machine this takes less than 3 minutes.  In fact, I let the ten year olds do this part themselves.  

And there you have mess tie dye!

Sample Sale Season!

Many of you have asked me about this sale.  So here are early details.

Sample Sale!

Thursday, October 10th  10am - 8pm
Friday October 11th  10am - 4pm

Greenwich Boys and Girls Club
4 Horseneck Lane Greenwich, CT 06830

and don't forget what starts at 8am today

Sunday, August 18, 2013

Baby Starbucks

I love Starbucks.  Seriously.

When we lived in New York, we probably hit the Starbucks a couple of times a day.  There was one on the block where we lived and another just outside my office.

Once we had children, I couldn't exactly get something for myself and ignore that little bundle in her stroller.  So, KF would get a strawberry smoothie to sip.  Fast forward, we now have three little bundles and trust me, Starbucks can become a line item in your budget if you are going frequently and buying everyone a drink.

Needless to say, I have cut back by habit tremendously.

If you like to take your little ones to the coffee shop, here are some great non-caffeine options

  • HOT CHOCOLATE-- You can have the barista make the original (which has a richer and darker flavor).  If you have a picky eater, you can have the barista heat a horizon chocolate milk.  Whip Cream optional.
  • PASSION ICED TEA-- This is a Hibiscus (read: Berry) flavored tea-- sweeten it with plain or raspberry simple syrup and I promise your bundle will love it.  Alternatively, you can have the barista cut the tea with lemonade.
  • SMOOTHIE-- orange mango, strawberry or chocolate are all available and they are pretty good!
  • BABYCCINO-- Think of this as a cappuccino but with no coffee added.  Frothy milk is fancy for the younger set!
  • BLENDED STRAWBERRY LEMONADE-- made with strawberry puree, lemonade, cream base and sweetener.
  • CARMEL APPLE SPICE-- This is apple cider heated up with carmel and whipped cream on top.  And again, if you have a picky eater, you could also have the barista heat up an apple juice from the refrigerated area.
  • RASPBERRY ITALIAN SODA-- using a pellegrino from the front case, ask the barista to add a couple pumps of Raspberry syrup and if you want, some sweetener.
  • SYRUP CREME FRAPPUCCINO-- Strawberries & Creme, Vanilla Bean, and Double Chocolatey Chip are all made without any coffee and with a caffeine free base. 
  • VANILLA STEAMER-- This is my kid's favorite.  It's 2% milk with a couple pumps of vanilla syrup.
There is no reason not to make the coffee shop a fun place for the smaller set.  In fact, for an after school treat, it's definitely easier on your waistline if they choose it over the ice cream shop!  

Monday, August 5, 2013

Where I come from

I am from the peach state, but yesterday, we were doing our peach picking at Silverman's in Easton, Connecticut.  The weather had a hint of fall in it and the sky was a brilliant blue.  I combination that always reminds me of the morning of September 11th.  We headed out early and enjoyed the farm's petting zoo first.  They had all sorts of interesting animals.  The kids laughed as I called them all by wrong names (emu/ostrich, reindeer/deer, bison/buffalo ..really, what's the difference).  For the first time in a long time, I sat back and watched my kids genuine excitement.  They are quickly approaching the age where screams of delight and running for pure excitement at a petting zoo will not exist.  So, I indulged in the moment.

There was one BIG buzzkill of the day.  They only had doughnut peaches for picking.  So, we picked our minimum of 20 pounds and now I have to figure out what to do with all these little peaches.  I'm pretty sure the uses are limited.  However, if you know of one or ten recipes, please send them my way (cough, cough...Mrs. White).

 We ended our stay with a play on the playground.  I loved the wooden structures.  The bench that the kids are sitting on was their largest tree on the property tht fell when Sandy came through.  Such a great use for a sentimental tree.

Sunday, August 4, 2013

Recipe du Jour

The farmers market has so many wonderful veggies this time of year.  With beach/swim time and activities to keep the kids occupied, I am always looking for recipes that are delicious, but more importantly, quick to prepare.  I found this recipe in Real Simple Magazine and it is a slam dunk!  My kids love it and it only takes about 10 minutes to put together.  Tonight I served it with Salmon and Quinoa and it really hit the spot.  Definitely add this to your weekly menu.

Pea, Fete and Crispy Prosciutto Salad

  • 2 thin slices of prosciutto (2 ounces)
  • kosher salt and black pepper
  • 1 1/2 pounds fresh peas (about 2 cups) or two cups of frozen peas
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 ounces Feta, crumbled (1⁄2 cup)
  • scallions, thinly sliced


  1. Heat oven to 450° F. Place the prosciutto in a single layer on a rimmed baking sheet and bake until beginning to darken, 10 to 12 minutes. Let cool (the prosciutto will crisp as it cools), then crumble.
  2. Meanwhile, bring a large saucepan of salted water to a boil. Add the peas and cook until tender, 5 to 7 minutes (1 to 2 minutes if frozen). Drain and rinse under cold water to cool.
  3. In a large bowl, toss the peas with the oil, Feta, scallions, prosciutto, and ¼ teaspoon each salt and pepper.