DIYs Of the Week: Stressed Mommy Edition

I’ve been neglecting the blog as I have been a little busy lately. It’s been a rough few weeks what with a newly walking little person, baby proofing, borrowing a friends serger, buying a new stroller, pump and carseat, did I mention the new little walking person?!

I have decided to start compiling some fab DIYs that I have found around the web as we all know its better to make things than buy from a store. Enjoy!

DIY Mesh Bath Toy Bag from Make It and Love It

DIY Bath Toy Storage from Make It and Love It

Make me!

Mommy Baby Kitchen Towel from All for this Penny

What a great gift

Doll House Shelves from Knockoff Wood

Are you handy with a tape measure? ( I’m not)

DIY Funny Face Plates from ohdeedoh

Great gift idea!


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Quick Post: I survived my child’s birthday party…

little giraffe waits for his first cupcake photo by Emily

That’s right folks I survived my child’s birthday party entact. I deserve a t-shirt, or better yet a bumper sticker. ( writing myself a sticky to design one.)   After all the hemming and hawing, paper garland sewing, cupcake topper making, researching vegan low sugar cupcakes blahblahblah…  it all worked out ok. I will admit I ate a total of THREE, count that, THREE massive cupcakes today to get me through. I started at 4:30 this morning.  The goal of the party was to have fun all around, and boy did we have some of that.

I will be posting many a photo by our amazing photographer Mr. Jared Charney who we were privilaged to have cover the event. He does some beautiful work and is very witty.  We had beautiful vegan cupcakes that I can’t wait to eat more of. Lebanese food and prosecco made the day a delight.

The kids had a blast in a plastic pool filled with ball pit balls. When I say a blast, I mean 2 hours of non-stop rolling-around-going-to-pee-my-diaper -giggling. Best $20 we have ever spent.

Most importantly my son had a fantastic time.  Everyone says, ‘ they don’t remember the first birthday,’ we pulled out all the stops for our little giraffe because that’s how we roll. I know its a ghetto way of saying it, but- tis true. True dat.

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Story time: The best carbs I’ve ever had.

Once upon a time I discovered I had too many organic sweet potatoes lying around and not enough babies to eat them. I came upon a daunting recipe from Pinch My Salt and decided to become the baker because it really and truly is in my DNA.

It all started with two packets of yeast, bread flour ( who knew there was such a thing!), buttermilk ( which smells rancid but that means it’s all good), and my beautiful Kitchen-Aid mixer that gets very little use.

*Side note: I can’t believe I actually made this dough with my own two hands. Who am I ? What have I become? I used to sling boring stories to reporters and be a Pinot snob, now I bake bread? Apparently I have the time…

The dough was kneaded and formed and left to chill for a bit. While chillin’ like a villian it decided to become some rolls.

The dough doubled in size and was formed into little bundles of sweet goodness and left again to chill. This time it knew it was destined to become really good rolls. The best rolls they could be.

Then the dough walked into the oven and stayed there for a while contemplating on how it would attach itself permanetly to my thighs.

Out of the oven the rolls came  beautifully dusted with flour and longing to be alongside homemade onion soup and of course a Blue Moon seasoned with clementine. It was a lovely meal and they all lived happily ever after.

The End

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Get Your Thank You On…

The way I was raised, when you get a gift, you send a thank you note. In my family if you don’t send one it is as if you have committed a cardinal sin and must be penalized. ( i.e. no gifts next year) I think its important, it shows gratitude and is polite. Simply put. I don’t really care to receive them, but I do feel compelled to write them.

Now that the holidays have ceased we have a mountain of thank yous to write.  How can I get my almost-one-year old to write a note? Well, I can’t. He can express to me how much he loves the toys he received and every time I put on his adorable organic jammies he writhes around and says, ‘ OOoooooo!’ But I have been brainstorming a creative way to do notes this year.

Vintage Chica– Draw up a note with fill int he blanks! Love this idea

image from Vintage Chica

We opted for handmade ones. What can a one year old do? Handprints! Hooray!

Baby Handprints!Supplies:

Non- Toxic Paint


A Paint brush or craft sponge

A Baby

1) Seat child in a highchair  and adorn clothes you don’t mind painting in 🙂

2) Paint the child’s hand with paint and stamp away!

Tips: They aren’t going to come out perfect- your child is a baby 🙂 abstract is better anyways! 🙂

We included a little note on each card that said thanks for the gift etc and added Happy Valentine’s Day as they were red and white.

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My kid needs a big boy carseat. Can I get a hollaback?

The drama has begun as we are fast approaching the big ONE. My husband and I went to a large chain store that shall remain nameless ( because I fear that they won’t let us back in) and started our quest for the perfect, SAFE, and stylish big boy car seat. Easy right? WRONG. Brace yourselves, this is a tale…

We have been to this store at least one hundred times and pranced over to the carseat section to the high end seats. A small bird like woman began speaking ot us very fast and chirpy like. My husband looked at me as if to say, ‘ What is this woman talking about, I don’t understand her! S.O.S,’ ( translation, Save Our SON.) I quieted the woman down by saying, moreover, shouting, ‘ ALL SET, JUST LOOKING, THANKS!’ She then said something inaudible and walked away.

Car Seat

Cow Car Seat- LOVES image from

If you have ever been to the car seat aisle its kind of like a row of cars just looking at you. They all have the little tags that say their features and price. Some have flashier labels that say, ‘ Super Soft Plushy,’ seriously, plushy? How old are you ? Others are cheapy looking just waiting for the next little tushy to fill the seat.

As new parents I will admit 99% of the time WE HAVE NO IDEA WHAT WE ARE DOING. Juuuust winging it. Professional bullshitters. So when we embark on buying a new item for baby we research, do case studies and publish a full thesis to figure out the best possible option. But I feel like a bad parent when I am winging it purchasing a carseat, after all the child is supposed to be safe and built in cup holders can’t help in an accident. Right? ( I kid, I kid)

We tried four different seats none of which seemed to fit properly. I could put my arms in next to my sons legs even when the straps were pulled uber tight. We just couldn’t get the right fit.After speaking with THREE different associates no one had the right answer and we left with no seat and a cranky baby.

The moral of the story is we will be heading elsewhere for our seat….

I’ll be sure to update you on our progress…

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Back to Blogging…

Hello fellow readers, its been a while. OVER a month actually. As I pick bits of avocado off my jeans let me tell you: what a month its been. Christmas has come and gone. It was sad walking the clearance aisles of Target dodging broken ornaments with shattered dreams of becoming tree bound. I finally took down the xmas decor and replaced it with lovely valentine hearts.

My son managed to avoid an abundance of  BPA filled plastic toys which made my heart happy. The family gift this year, a MacBook. I am still learning how to use it. I can’t even figure out how to spellcheck, so I apologize for spelling mistakes; not grammar ones though- those are juuussst me.

As I have mentioned each year we do a handmade gift, it was supposed to be etched glass but it didn’t pan out this year due to bad timing on my part. We opted for lemon sugar scrub and pictures of our darling boy. It was a hit.

New Year’s is gone and past, again  we ask the question- what are your New Year’s Resolutions? Or moreover, what are you going to swear you will do then completely forget by Feb 1?  Last year I looked to being more positive- hahaha, and eliminating paper towels. That one actually stuck. As of this moment there is not a single paper towel in this house. Pretty good eh?

This year I am going to resolve to “getting active” ( no, I didn’t say get skinny, or diet, or workout.) I am also looking to blogging more and enrolling in school. My other is to eliminate waste, no more crazy purchases or trashed organic bean sprouts.  We shall see what comes of these aspirations.

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Need Inspiration?

How is your Operation Handmade Holiday going ? Be honest…

Yeah, mine not so good either. It’s ok! ( I have been trying to tame a crying baby all day.) I did make a hat though. Check it out at the ROBAY STUDIO blog tomorrow. I’ll come back and put up a link.

In any case we need some inspiration in our lives! SewMamaSew one of my fav blogs also has Handmade Holidays as a campaign on their site. They are offering dozens of the best tutorials for FREE! Some even include patterns 🙂 Be sure to check it out.

This is one of my favs from green is the new blue:




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Operation Handmade Holiday!

IMG_2323Operation Handmade Holiday has begun! As I prepare for the holidays this year  I  am taking the pledge to make more gifts than ever before.Yes you can go to a store and BUY things, but isn’t it better to make them ? More personalized and of course cheaper!

I will be chronicling my handmade travels on both  this blog as well as the ROBAY STUDIO blog as well . From soaps to crocheted ornaments ( pictured  to the right)  we will be making lots of gifty items for everyone on your list.

Quick Tip: I usually start by making a list of everyone on my ‘nice’ list 😉  I then sort them by groups, families, single folks, work buddies, kids etc. If you have 5 kids to buy for ask yourself, can I make them all something similar, say crayon roll ups or smock aprons ?  Lots of ladies to buy for  this year? If making soaps and spa gifts try bigger batches to save time!

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Now taking Custom Orders… Oh My!

Well hello again blog. It’s me. Holly J. Been a little busy the baby, juggling playgroups, animals, PR and oh yeah and everything else.

I received my first custom order on Etsy! Very exciting 🙂 I made two pairs of pink cloth shoes with corduroy bottoms for twin baby girls. The mom loved them which was great.

IMG_2044IMG_2045I have also been messing around on my sewing machine, which isn’t a good idea as I have so much to do! Bay needed a wearable sleep blanket as he was chilly in the evenings. Instead of paying 30$ I decided to try and make it. How hard could it be ?  I swore a LOT:

IMG_2112But its done and he likes it. He really likes it. Can’t you tell ?


We have TWO shows coming up and have items due to a fabulous store. Soon to be revealed! We are also working on a facebook page!

I have been very busy doing PR for the Boston Vegetarian Soceity a cause near and dear to my heart despite my last post on a chicken recipe. The BVFF is holding their annual Boston Vegetarian Food Fest coming up October 31st and November 1st in Boston. This is a fabulous FREE event with FREE parkings. Wonderful vendors, speakers, and of course samples! We love going to this every year! Its a great chance to try out some of the veggie foods you wouldn’t otherwise try, also bring the kidlets.

Halloween is on the horizon, I am so excited about taking Bay out! He plans to be a giraffe if and only if mommy makes his costume!

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The Easiest Recipe In The World

I do love to cook but sometimes I just want to curl up on the couch and relax. My husband loves a good roast chicken and I love it because it can make multiple meals. Think chicken soup and chicken salad! Aren’t I a good vegetarian wife…

Try this easy recipe:photo


1 small chicken

1/2 cup fresh chopped herbs, or 2 tbsp dried

1/2 cup olive oil

4 garlic cloves minced

1 small onion, peeled

5 carrots, peeled, trimmed  and halved

Salt & Pepper

Clean the chicken and stuff with small onion. Place in a small baking dish. Rub on olive oil , garlic and salt and pepper, sprinkle with herbs and line carrots around the chicken. Cover with foil and place in the oven on 350 for 1 hour. Remove foil and bake for additional 10 min to brown.

That’s it!!!!

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