Ahhh, one more weekend, one more birthday

photo 1 (3)Yesterday, we celebrated my baby’s first birthday.

Unlike her big sister’s birthday 2 weeks ago I changed it up a bit (last minute that is) and had everyone meet us at our local cafe studio ‘Dulce by La Duni’. I don’t know if it was because I was craving their delectable cuatro leches cake or was it because we just hosted a big party at home not too long ago and had another one planned for my son the following week. Either way, mommy needed a break from doing dishes, decorating the house etc.

La Duni is such a pretty place that it was easy to feel at home there. It felt intimate & personal without the hassle of pre- and post party clean-up. Plus, afterwards we all came back home for presents & mimosas. Since it was only our closest friends it was easy.

I have to say, if I had a choice I’ll do it this way ALL the time. But I know the older kids like having a house full of their friends running, jumping, dancing, screaming… I know I know … It’s just too much to do 3 of those in one month!

But back to drooling over how perfect of a place La Duni is … They even had coral-colored roses on the tables – same color as Stella’s top which happens to be my favorite color of 2013!

Stella knew this day was all about her. She truly soaked up in all the attention and clapped and smiled and gave kisses. I love  one-year-olds. This has got to be my favorite age. They still love to be kissed and carried around but try so hard to talk and be big kids. So darned cute. I love her to pieces.

 

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I also love these cupcakes ‘to pieces’ : Cuatro Leches!

Here is how they describe them on their menu: Layered Mantecado vanilla sponge cake, soaked in cuatro leches sauce, topped with
caramelized Swiss meringue and dotted with Arequipe reduction. Served with 3 leches sauce and Arequipe caramel! Ok, you had me at ‘soaked’ … Yummy!

That fluffy meringue topping is so much more delicious than icing! I love the caramel drizzle. The vanilla sponge cake SOAKED! in cuatro leches sauce – divine!

I don’t think it gets any better than this.

 

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Aside from all the sugar & caffeine (check out their incredibly extensive coffee & tea selection!)  I have to say that the presence of only our dearest friends topped with an absolutely happy baby made this day so memorable and extra special for me. I can’t wait to celebrate many many more birthdays this way in the future.

To Stella : Just a year ago we just met you ‘little star’ now you are claiming your place in this world so gracefully. I love you! Happy first birthday!

 

Change of Plans

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A happy change of plans this morning when we found out that all soccer fields were going to be closed due to yesterday’s rain! I can’t say that everyone enjoyed these news. Especially the boys weren’t too happy about it. They thought it was perfect soccer weather but than again they think any weather is perfect sports weather. I was excited to hear the good news with a latte in my hand that my husband brought back from Starbucks and a whole day ahead. Ahhh, the possibilities…

We ended up in downtown Dallas like most weekends when we don’t have anything else to do. We love going to the DMA (www.dallasmuseumofart.org) and visiting the Klyde Warren Park across the street right after. It’s so urban but relaxing and a nice break from our suburban soccer-parent lifestyle.

This was the first time we visited since the baby started walking which was interesting to watch – her little 30″ amongst all these dogs, kids and grown-ups playing Frisbee, football, you name it! She loved it though and went and touched everyone and started babbling with them. So so cute!

Years ago, when my husband and I lived in Dallas (this was before the kids!) we lived in Uptown. We always wished that there would be more action in our neighborhood. There was absolutely nothing going on back than. Just construction here and there. I must say, who ever dreamed up such a vibrant Downtown / Uptown area they did a fantastic job! It is booming in Dallas. I love all the young families. Where were they 9 years ago? The restaurants, shops, town homes, apartment buildings, museums, a trolley … all remind me of Chicago, New York or San Francisco minus the water.  What is so nice about these outings for our family is that EVERYONE enjoys them equally! There is something for everyone. Oh, the food trucks that are park alongside the park are there every single day!! There are books, magazines & board games to check out – for free! The lime green tables & chairs are plentiful. There are ping pong tables, putting green, croquet, dog park,music, children’s park, water park, chess!!!

After a day hanging out at the park we return home relaxed & inspired! Kids watch football with their dad and I get to spend some time in my sewing room.

Here are a couple of pictures from our previous visits. Can’t wait to go back soon! So long Dallas.

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Spring, Summer, Fall or Winter this park is the perfect outing for my family!

 

 

Lavender Sachet, DIY

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I really hope you’ll give these a try. They are so easy! I promise! Let’s get started:

Gather all your supplies: 2 x 5.5 ” pieces of fabric, 2 oz. of organic lavender seeds (I purchased mine on Amazon for $15.99/pound), little spoon to scoop seeds, 8 ” ribbon, sewing machine with matching thread, hand sewing needle and more thread, iron (optional), pinking shears (optional), disappearing ink marker and a piece of paper to make your shape of choice.

  1. Make a heart or any other shape with paper – that’s your pattern! (Mine measured 5” across.)
  2. Trace your shape onto fabric.

photo (87)3. Cut out your shape (front & back).

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4. Pin right sides together. TIP: This is where I inserted an 8” ribbon into the heart sandwich. This will later make your loop!

photo 25. Sew around your shape with a very small seam leaving an inch or two opening. Tip: The bigger the opening the easier it is to turn inside out and fill with seeds.

photo (85)6. Trim your shape with pinking shears.

madewithover (8)6. Turn inside out & press seams.

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7. Fill the heart with lavender seeds (for mine I used about 2 ounces.) You are almost done!! 🙂

photo (89)8. Slip stitch opening closed.

photo (86)There you have it! Keep, give, trade, or simply admire your handmade sachet!  I made some for Stella’s guests this Sunday, saved some to send overseas as Christmas gifts, and slipped some in the linen drawers to repel moths.

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P.S. I  love giving gifts that are hand-made, pretty, useful & in this case even come with a list of benefits. Read about the benefits of lavender here

Happy sewing!

Psssst, we have an official Yasemin Tea Logo coming soon!!

I just got an update from my logo designer, Toni. She promised to have my official logo for the site, the labels, cards etc. etc. done by the end of the month! September that is! That’s about 12 away! 12 days? It’s time to start the ‘new’ 12 days of you know what! … of impatiently waiting that is silly, not Christmas! 🙂

These are the questions she asked me in order to create the perfect look:

DESIGN BRIEF

1. What’s your preferred deadline, time frame or exact date of completion?

2. Describe your organization. Please name three adjectives you think your organization encompasses.

3. Does your organization currently have a logo or any logos it is affiliated with? If so, will you please provide an image of it.

4. Does your organization have any colors, or do you have a color scheme in mind for this logo?

5. Do you have a tagline or any other specific information, like imagery, you would like to be included in the logo?

6. What is the primary use for this logo? Are there any size specifications?

7. What message would you like this logo to convey to your viewer?

8. Please add any other information you would like to include.

Here is my response: 

  1. By end of August 2013 (ahem! wink wink)
  2. Hand made, fashionable, useful.
  3. No existing logos.
  4. Greens & coral or nautical. Both water & trees are visually appealing to me.
  5. I like seahorses and nautical symbols like anchors, star fish, fish, whales etc.
  6. Will be printed onto labels that will go on handmade zippered pouch and possibly other similar accessories. Also could be sewn into clothing. Will be displayed as banner in Etsy.com shop. Will be used in letter head on invoices. (Oh, and the blog! :-))
  7. Quality, unique, pretty, beautiful.
  8. Below a few examples of the pouches that will be sold on Etsy.com. (You can find the temporary shop on Etsy.com under Yasemin Tea (pretty pouches).

 

I cannot tell you how exciting this process is! I just wished it happened faster! Hurry up Toni!!

Meanwhile I’ll keep filling these pages with interesting content. This is what I am working on today:

Lavender Sachet Tutorial (Martha Stewart inspired):

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Question

Wednesday, already? It’s time to take another look at that weekly to-do list and take inventory. Yep, I thought so. Haven’t gotten much checked off my list. But I have a feeling that I’ll be catching up today. Is it because I’ve been up since 3 am? And why do  smoke detectors come on at night? And how come they don’t really detect smoke? Or should they be called ‘alarm clocks’ instead? Or are they made to increase family time? ‘Cause why else did I have the WHOLE FAMILY in my bed this morning when that thing didn’t stop chirping? Chirping? Well, it sounds worse than that of course…

Don’t get me wrong, I am grateful to have smoke detectors installed. I am happy to share some cuddle time with the family but not at 3 am !!!! Especially today with Stella’s doctor’s appointment scheduled. About that… Boy, was she in a bad mood. The doctor and I were chatting away about how we both have the same age kids, how the two older ones are in third grade and Kinder respectively and guess what? They even attend the SAME school!!! But no, Miss Stella didn’t want to be part of this conversation. She just wanted to leave his office asap. Before she even got her shots she would not stop SCREAMING! She must have remembered the last time we were there (shortly after we returned from Germany) and this not-so-friendly nurse came in, gave her her booster Hep shot and was out the door within 2 minutes. Now, our Stella is used to attention. You WILL NOT ignore this one or she will throw a fit. Which she has all the way to the car. That’s why Momma is drinking a cup of regular coffee instead of decaf tea while baby is napping! But at the same time I feel like I am going to get a lot done today. Could it be the caffeine talking? 🙂

Well, also I did some prep work last night. All first year pics are printed. I also swung by Hobby Lobby in the afternoon with the kids to purchase some pretty paper. Now its off to cutting and glueing. I love this part. I will take pics and post them once I figure out size and shape of this baby’s first year banner.

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Wish me luck!

A star is born!

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It’s time to bring out the balloons & light a candle! We have yet another birthday girl in the house. Our little Stella turns ONE today!

Rewind 364 days: Impatiently we have been waiting for your entrance into the world. It was way past your due date and my tummy was getting rounder and rounder. You know you are huge when even strangers gasp at the sight of your tummy!

 We had been living in our new home for over 2 months and in Texas for almost 4 months when finally over the weekend the little pokes and aches started getting more intense. Since we planned to have you at home I tried really hard to visualize how this whole thing would go down. We had your brother and sister here and no friends and family nearby to call. What would they be doing? Would they wonder why mommy was moaning and groaning? Would they just watch TV in the other room? Or could it be that maybe just maybe you would decide to come in the middle of the night while the house was quite? And so it was, Sunday night once both big kids settled down for the night (Isaiah had to get up early to go to school!) my labor was in full swing. Your dad & I walked up and down that hallway a hundred times! No joke!! It was a marathon. At about 11:30 pm, I got your daddy to call the midwife. She actually said to call her back when the contractions were LONGER! REALLY??? Not more frequent but longer! Dang it! How can they tell by just talking to you over the phone how imminent it really is? I just started to think that I had to give birth to you without any assistance. I clenched that trusty Iphone with the contraction app and recorded every little thing.

 Finally at about 2 am in the morning our angel midwife Amy (from Allen Birthing Center) arrived. She has the most gently voice and knows just how to assist without intruding. She gave me so much confidence that I could do this. Shortly after Amy arrived you decided it was time for your grand entrance! (I won’t go into the little hiccup we had when daddy fell of the bed trying to record the birth. Hey, on the bright side we got some great pictures and Amy got a good laugh.) And as for your brother & sis? They stayed fast asleep until Seda (of course Seda!), little Miss Inquisitive, woke up about 10 minutes before the head popped out. But as I imagined Disney channel came to the rescue and after watching me for only a few minutes she was off to her once-in a lifetime chance of watching TV at 2:30 am!!!!! Isaiah, the true gentleman, joined us once Stella was all wrapped up in a towel. 🙂 No icky visuals here.

I absolutely love love love remembering the day you were born! I love the feeling of joy & absolute bliss when I held your little warm body. Sharing you with the rest of the family is one of my proudest moments. You have marked your place in our hearts little Stella Elle! We are so happy you are here and now ONE year old! Happy happy birthday my love! And many many more.