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Birds, Bees, and Trees

© 2012 Christine Bewley. All rights reserved.  Do not copy.
Lilac, a bush that has cute little white rosettes, and wisteria in the background.
Spring is really kicking in around my house.  All the bushes, trees, and flowers are beginning to bud.  Except for the Oak trees.  They are always behind.  Except everything else is early so I guess the Oaks are still on-time.  I want to call them all Tree Beard.  That's a Lord of the Rings reference for anyone who didn't understand.

© 2012 Christine Bewley. All rights reserved.  Do not copy.
Lilac
My yard smells so good right now!!  Every time the wind blows, you can smell the sweetness.  I took my life into my own hands by trying to take photos of the flowers and bushes in the yard.  The bees were so excited!  They are everywhere, buzzing here and there.

I've been spending so much time outside just soaking up the great weather that I've completely neglected the blog.  I've pretty much neglected my laptop in general.  It's one drawback of having the iPad.  I spend more time on it.  It's more portable and always booted up and ready to go.  Then I find that I'm stressed over how to Draw Something or how long my dragon egg will take to hatch.

© 2012 Christine Bewley. All rights reserved.  Do not copy.
Enjoying some grass....
Not to mention Rowan is zooming right through babyhood!  She's got two teeth now and finally mastered crawling.  She had the Army crawl down like a champ, but she finally figured out how to get those knees working too.  Not to mention, she's pulling up on anything she can get a good hand hold on.  She's a quick little booger too.  I can not believe she's almost 9 months old now.  She loves being outdoors and I'm excited about going camping with her for the first time.

So this is where I've been and what I've been doing... just in case you missed me!

Sibu Beauty Review

I was recently given an opportunity to try out a product that I was unfamiliar with, Sibu Beauty's Sea Buckthorn Balancing Facial Cleanser.

I must admit that I'm usually pretty lax when it comes to washing my face daily.  I don't wear makeup very often and find that I just skip the whole face routine more often than I should.  I'm in my early 30's though and need to get a regular skin care routine started.  With that being said, I have found where I'm going to start!

Sibu products are made using sea buckthorn, a berry from Tibet.  Sea buckthorn is full of anti-oxidants, minerals and vitamins.  It's also paraben and sulfate free.

The bottle states to "apply a generous amount of the balancing facial cleanser to moistened hands".  To start, I used three pumps because that is what is required with my other cleanser.  Whoa!  That was way too much.  I found that only one pump is enough to wash your whole face.  Making it economical as well because you don't have to use much to see results!

The first thing I noticed was the wonderful smell.  A very citrus-y and awakening aroma.  I found I looked forward to the routine of washing my face every morning because the smell felt bright and eye opening.

After a full week of use, I can definitely see and feel the difference.  My skin feels smoother and looks brighter. The micro-particles offer a gentle exfoliation and I noticed a more evenness in my skin.

What to know more?  You can find Sibu Beauty products here, on Facebook, and on Twitter.

*This post was sponsored by Sibu Beauty.  A free sample of the product was provided.  All opinions are my own.

BBQ Chicken Pizza

Last night was the easiest dinner I've cooked in some time.  Just a few ingredients, only 30 minutes of cooking time.  Yay!  I even took some crappy pictures to share with you!  

BBQ Chicken Pizza

What you'll need:
  • 1 store purchased pizza crust
  • 1 jar BBQ sauce
  • 2-3 boneless, skinless chicken breast
  • 1 red onion
  • Shredded cheddar cheese
  • Shredded mozzarella cheese
  • Can/jar or fresh mushrooms
  • Cilantro
  • Olive oil


1.  In a large skillet, add 2 tablespoons of olive oil then add chicken.  Cook thoroughly.  Once cooked, shred chicken with a fork or cut into bite size pieces.

2. While the chicken is cooking, dice red onion, drain and rinse mushrooms, and chop cilantro.  


3.  Pour some BBQ sauce on the crust, then throw on some chicken.  Add your toppings of choice and top with cheese.


4. Place in a pre-heated 400F oven for 15 minutes.  


5. Enjoy!

A Little Spring in my Step

Yesterday was the first day of Spring and what a glorious day it was here! The weather was beautiful, but uncharacteristically HOT. In a spur of the moment decision, I decided there was no way I was going to spend the first day of Spring indoors. It was like the birds we're calling me out for spending too much time inside while the weather has been begging for outside activity.

I was a little too ambitious in my decision. I called up my Mom, told her I wasn't taking no for an answer, and convinced her to come with me. I've been to this particular trail before, but it was the year before last since I'd been. Now my Mom is in her early 60's, isn't a big hiker (ok, she's NOT a hiker at all!), and had surgery 20+ years ago that compromised the integrity of a hip. No, this isn't going to be a post about her falling and breaking a hip, though it might be simultaneously funny and scary. It's a story about how a post-baby, out of shape Mom and her "senior" Mom hiked into the wilderness and almost didn't come out!

I remembered this trail as being relatively short and not very strenuous. I used this information to convince my Mom that she wouldn't have a problem hiking it with me. I picked her up, headed to the store to grab some bottles of water and ice for the cooler, granola bars and snacks for the break we'd take at the end of the trail, and top off the gas tank. And away we went!


I wrapped myself like a mummy with my Moby and got the baby all tucked in.  I grabbed a drawstring bag, filled it with granola bars, water, a sippy cup, and Nutter Butters, slung the camera over my shoulder and began the journey.  I really need to find/get a wrap/carrier that puts the baby on my back.  The Moby is great for short periods of time, but for this extended excursion it was probably not the best choice.  My neck and shoulder area is aching today!


One of the highlights of this trail are the rocks.  Huge, giant, monstrous boulders.  Islands of rock in the forest.  More often than not you will find trees growing in or on them.


Some rocks look like turtles.


Some rocks are gnome homes.


Some are slowing running away.


And some rocks just love you.


These were growing everywhere we looked.  Mom said she thought they looked like trillium.  I had no idea so... to the Google mobile! If, and that's a BIG if, I have the correct species of trillium then this is a Relict Trillium.  It's also on the endangered list.  BUT in all my looking I couldn't find it listed as a plant of Kentucky.  I've emailed the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.



All the flora is beginning to grow and it's still mostly browns, but everywhere you look there are signs of Spring.


At the end of the trail there is a large waterfall with a small stream that flows into the lake.  A beautiful area and perfect for the break that we needed.  Especially since I thought the trail was about a half mile long one way and it turns out that it is actually 2 miles long!



The water is so clear and cool.  Well that's not entirely true... the water was cold!  That sure didn't stop the baby from trying to dive right in!  I had to hold on to the back of her shirt to keep her from running away!


This is what made the hike worth the time and effort.  I've heard there is much more to see on some of the side trails, but I've never ventured off the most beaten path.

At the end of the day, my first day of Spring was pretty awesome.  How was yours?

Random iPhone Photos

Just for your amusement.

Gee the Sun is quite bright.

He's the best big brother.

She's the best big sister.

Checkers on the "front porch" at Cracker Barrel.

Circa 1991.  Cam and I. (My mom found an old photo album....)

The dental version of Botox.... leaves half your face numb.

Ro Baby is beginning her adventures in "real" food.  Animal crackers = yes.  Hard boiled egg yolk = not a chance.  BUT it sure makes a great mess!
P.S.  Please ignore MY mess in the background!  =)

The Sun Shines Bright on My Old Kentucky Home

I just realized that I haven't posted in over a week!  The weather has been so beautiful here that I've not even bothered to think about the computer.  Check out these temperatures!

Uh... yay!!  It's no secret that I wear my flip flops year around, but now I can wear them and not have people look at me funny!  Hee hee!

Yesterday I took the wee one outside to soak up some of the Sun, but I was worried she'd get burned so I did this.

Did you know that a fitted crib sheet is the perfect size "cover" for a play yard?  It's great!  The elastic helps keep it in place.

I can't wait for this weekend.  We're going to mow our yard for the first time this year.  I hope this will help promote growth.  In the Fall/Winter our grass turns brown and brittle so in the Spring there are random sprigs of green everywhere.  Once it greens up I won't have to have Rowan in a play yard, I can just let her crawl in the grass!  She's never experienced cool green grass before.

I hope that the weather is beautiful where you are too!!

My Lil' Monkey Butt

It's so hard to believe that Rowan is 8 months old today!  It's incredibly scary how fast this time has already flown by.


My sweet little Ro-baby, you have become such a big girl!

You have the Army crawl down pat.  If you ever get those little knees under you, I'll never be able to catch you!  To be just scooting around you sure are fast!  You are even starting to pull up on Mama and the furniture.

You are fascinated by anything made of paper, power cords (to the Playstation, my laptop...anything), and shoes.  Apparently all of our shoes taste awesome because you are constantly putting them in your mouth. Yuck!

You still have only one tooth, but you're working on another.  I'm finally giving in and letting you have a few bites of "real" food.  You were pretty interested in our lasagna a few nights ago so I gave you a teeny tiny bite.  You practically ripped my plate out of my hands to get another one!  I guess it was better than the pureed squash.

You are still nursing like a champ.  This makes Mama so proud!  No bottles for you!  You've started to figure out that sippy cup, but still need a little help with tipping it up to get a drink.

The only word we've gotten out of you consistently is Mama, but I think you think it's a universal word.  When it's time to nurse or you are hungry, you say Mama.  We're still working on learning the sign for milk.  Every now and then you will slip in a "Bubba" and this makes him so happy.  Your brother and sister sure do love you!  And so do Daddy and I!

Happy 8th month Rowan!

Knock on Wood

This weekend we decided it was finally time to say good riddance to a couple of carpeted rooms in our house.  One of which is a half bathroom.  More on that later...

We tugged and pulled and yanked and said a few curse words.  Just like that *snap* the carpet was gone.

Before....

For a reason only known to the installer, the carpet had been glued down.  Including that small area of linoleum you see my husband scraping away at.  Eventually we gave up ever getting that stuff up and just smoothed out the edges.

I really wanted to do laminate, but the hubs was convinced we could use vinyl planks.  I wasn't sold on the idea, but I agreed to it.  Home Depot had a better selection, but Lowe's had better prices.  We agreed on a caramel color oak plank.  It cost us less than $200 to put flooring in a 20' x 9' room.

During...
After the first couple of boxes were laid down, I was shocked.  Looking at a flimsy, vinyl plank all by it's wee lonesome in a big warehouse store does not compare to what the product will look like with a few of it's friends in your house.  I was loving it already!  I couldn't believe how much it actually looked like real wood.

After!!!
My brain is so in love with this floor.  My body wants to kick this floor's ass.  After about three to four hours of bending, twisting, getting down, and getting up, I thought all was good.  Until I woke up Monday morning... creaking like the Tin Man with no oil.  I am seriously out of shape and can't keep blaming the (8 months old tomorrow!!!!) baby for my lack of motivation.

I still need to paint and grab a couple of baseboards to finish it up.  Once I get all that done this will be my new craft/sewing room!!  I'm so excited!

Pinteresting Finds {Camper Edition}

I'm sure my Pops isn't big on turquoise or pastel colors.  I can't help it though.  I can not stop searching for camper remodels.  Pinterest is killing me.

Is this not the cutest?!  Image from here.
Probably a little to "fru-fru" for my Dad, but minus the curtains and it's kind of cute.  Image from here.
I love this!  So bright, but... almost too white and the pastels would never work for a dude.  Image from here.
I like the curtains in this one.  Not really the colors though... Image from here.
These appliances are perfectly vintage.  Image from this pin.
This is more his style.  Earthy tones.  Image found here.
Whatever he decides to do with this camper, I'm excited to help him do.  I think it's going to be great having him around.  We've already made so many plans!  The kids are going to have so much fun helping their Pop with a garden.  Come on May!!

The Longest Two Months

If you've been hanging around here for awhile you may remember way back in 2008 when my Dad came to live with us for a few months.  I was still using code names for the kids back then.  I really should go back and change those....

Me and my Pops in May 2008
Well guess what people?  He's moving back!

He's been scouring the entire Southern half of the US looking for a travel trailer.  One to fix up and make his own.  A few weeks ago he found one, a 1970 Nomad for only $1400.  About 2 hours from us.  He still lives in Southern Florida so the hubs and I took a mini-road trip to check it out.

It's retro time!
For a forty two year old camper, it's in surprisingly good shape.  She just needs a little love.  I took out all the curtains to wash them.  I'm pretty sure they were the same curtains that came with it in 1970.  

I've got until the middle of May to help him decide how to remodel it.  I don't know who is more excited him or me.