Monday, June 28, 2010

lemontree3...Coming Soon!

This Wednesday, June 30, I'm launching a new blog with two of my besties. It's called lemontree3 and we hatched the idea late one night in March. Now we're making it come to life. In fact, you already know these two friends of mine because I wrote about them here. I'm so excited to be blogging with them. They're both good writers and have interesting things to show and tell. I hope you'll be even more enriched by reading lemontree3 than you've been so far by a-lemon-tree. You can subscribe to our new blog here.

As it did with the name, lemontree3 will probably also take over a lot of the content of this blog, though I haven't yet decided what to do with Dissolve it completely? Take it in a different direction? Any ideas?

Thanks for reading, friends. I am so honored that you'd share life with me.


Thursday, June 10, 2010

My Favorite Things for Summer

For one of my baby showers last fall, my sister (who is married without kids - yet) bought me a gift bag-full of her favorite things for fall. She told me, "I don't know about babies or what they need so I got you this instead." I'll never forget that gift. I absolutely loved it. It helped me stay fashionable and trendy as a new mom during a season when I didn't have too much energy to think about myself. Plus, I loved opening each and every item and hearing her commentary about each one. So here are a few of my favorite things for this season. Take them for yourself or as gift ideas if you so desire.

*nautical stripes on anything and everything

*boat shoes (If you decide to invest in a great brand like Sperry Top Siders, go with a classic color - navy - like I did.)

*color: coral! (I bought a pair of jeweled H&M hair clips; my friend Steph gave me OPI's new Hot N Spicy nail polish; my mom gave me a J.Crew cardigan for my spring birthday. Plenty of coral to saturate my summer.)
*black patent leather peep-toe flats (A classic that will span several seasons and an overall wise update for my wardrobe.)

*vanilla italian sodas with fresh lime (vanilla syrup + club soda + ice + fresh-squeezed lime slice = yummy and refreshing goodness!)

*Burts Bees shimmery body lotion with royal jelly (A pampering gift from my friend Brenda when I had a baby - I love this stuff!)

Happy summering!

Monday, June 7, 2010

How to Make Your In-Laws Happy

I had a sublime idea (if I do say so myself!) that I wanted to share with you all so that you can claim it as your own and reap all of the happy benefits. I call it: A picture a day for a month. I don't know where the idea came from. I guess God.

If you're unmarried or don't have kids yet, archive this one for future reference.

For every day this month, my husband and I are emailing one picture of our 6-month-old Howard to his grandparents (and my sister). Sometimes it comes with a little caption; it always comes with the subject line: A picture a day for the month of June. They LOVE it. They might even text you if it gets to 8pm and you haven't sent a picture yet. I seriously feel like the daughter-in-law of the year. And I'm really not. And it's so easy (especially if you have a smart phone) and really fun!

Disclaimer: Be selective and wise in who you send the pictures to; not many people can tolerate a picture of your little one (as adorable as he or she may seem to you) every day for 30 days straight.

Just to whet your appetite, this was today's entry:

Mom took me on a bike ride in our new bike trailer...

Thursday, May 27, 2010

Easy Healthy Fruity Frozen Dessert

We're cleaning out our fridge and freezer these days. I've found that it's a good habit to get into every six months or so. And so we're having to get creative in the food department. Let's just say that some creativity turns out better than others.

I don't know about you, but frozen bananas are a staple in my freezer: I peel, saran wrap, and freeze mine whole whenever they're starting to get brown. There are many yummy things I've found that you can do with them. Here's one.
 Fruity Frozen Dessert
1 frozen banana, coined
1 cup frozen berries (blackberries and blueberries are the faves at our house)
1/2 cup vanilla coffee creamer (This may sound weird, but if you think about it, it's pretty much lower-calorie melted ice cream!)

Pour creamer over frozen fruit. The fruit makes the creamer almost instantly slushy. You can put the whole thing in the freezer for an additional minute or two if you want. Enjoy!

Friday, May 21, 2010

Celebrating 5 Years; Here's to 105 Years More!

Happy Anniversary, J.

How can it be that I love, trust, and respect you more today than I did that rainy day May 21, 2005 when we were wed!? Oh, but I do.


Thursday, April 29, 2010

I Heart: Homemade Pesto

How great is pesto!? I love it because:
1. It's heart-healthy
2. It's easy-as-pie to make a big batch and freeze
3. It whips out of the freezer and plops onto plain noodles or pizza dough (with meat and/or veggies if you want) with panache
4. A little bit goes a long way
5. My hubby likes it a lot

Here's the recipe I used recently:
1/4 cup olive oil
1/2 cup pine nuts, chopped
2 cups fresh basil leaves, firmly packed
1/2 cup Parmesan cheese, grated
5 cloves garlic, peeled and quartered
a dash of s & p

We had it a few nights ago atop whole wheat spaghetti noodles, alongside chicken pieces, sauteed asparagus, peas, onions, and mushrooms, and topped with feta cheese. Yum!

Thursday, April 22, 2010

An Antidote for Hard Times: Gratefulness

I'm a new mom. And it's hard. I think it's the hardest thing I've ever done to date.

I'm disappointed that hard times bring out the worst in me. My friend Todd told me once that it's hardest for him to care about others' needs when he's sick or going through a hard time personally. I've noticed the same trend in my life.

I was reminded recently about gratefulness and how important it is to practice being grateful. It might sound weird to practice gratefulness, but I know that for me it doesn't just come naturally. Especially during hard times. But it's exceptionally important for me to be grateful in hard times because it helps me get the focus off myself and on God and other people, which I think is the best place to live. And life could always be worse than it is.

So I've resolved to exercise my grateful-muscle more often. Here's a start:

I'm grateful for a healthy baby Howard who lives at my house and not in the hospital.
I'm grateful for a husband who cares for me and Howard, and that I don't have to care for Howard all by myself.
I'm grateful that Howard is napping right now so that I can even be writing this post.

How have you seen gratefulness change your perspective?