Monday, October 31, 2011

Portland Oddity: Voodoo Doughnuts

I am just going to apologize right now.

I seem to have taken a lot of photos of food while I was in Portland. (it was easy to do because the food all looked and tasted so darn yummy!)

 Voodoo Donuts.


The small bit of information I gathered before I went to Portland is that Portland is odd. And they LOVE their oddness. Voodoo doughnuts are one of those odd places that people LOVE to go to! We landed at 8:00 p.m. and went straight to the donut shop that is in the cities Northwest side close to 3rd and Burnside Street. Normally you will encounter a line out the door (I have not seen a line like that since Chipotle was privately owned) but on our first night there, there was not so much of a line. (We walked by Voodoo several other times during the weekend and there was always a line.)


You must have cash when you visit Voodoo. They do not take plastic cards.  We ordered three doughnuts and took them home to enjoy while we caught up and made weekend plans.

 The donuts all have fun names and often are shaped oddly. We tried the Portland Creme (Portland's Unofficial Official Doughnut, the Voodoo doll, and The Dirty Bastard. You can't tell it but that Dirty Bastard is a yeast doughnut with chocolate frosting, oreo's and then drizzled with peanut butter. Calories. Fat Grams. Both out the window!

There were a few doughnuts we did not try and wanted to. On Sunday, a few short minutes before we needed to leave for the airport we found ourselves back down in the Voodoo neighborhood.  We had to stand in line but we were determined to take doughnuts home to our families.


They even have their own pink delivery truck!


And can you tell that the outside brick has been painted and glittered?


 I am planning to update my resume when I get back home. Maybe they will pick me?





This is the Voodoo doll. He is a raised doughnut filled with some of the yummiest raspberry jam. I hate to admit this but I tried him and he is yummy, and I do not like jelly/pudding filled doughnuts. Ask my hubby he can tell you. When we were dating, he said that was my strike two.

 So, if a Voodoo doll is too scary, how about a Captain my The Loop (vanilla frosting and Fruit Loops), or A Grape Ape (purple frosting with sprinkles) or a Mango Tango (filled with mango jelly), a Double Bubble (cake doughnut with a piece of gum for afterwards.

 
 I love the eyeball but my friend reminded me it probably would not travel well. I did take home a Maple Bacon (a raised doughnut with Maple Bacon frosting topped with two strips of bacon (DO NOT WRINKLE your nose! it was amazing!) They also have a Texas Challenge right there in Portland. A glazed raised doughnut that equals six regular doughnuts. OH, it was big!

So, if you are planning a Portland trip,  take a break from the pods and head over to Voodoo doughnuts!

Sunday, October 30, 2011

Hungry In Portland? Head to a Pod!

My Girls Weekend has been so much fun!

We are in Portland, Oregon.

One of the truly unique things about Portland are the food carts.

I am sure every city has some food carts. I know Kansas City does. Denver does. But man: nothing beats the food carts here!



Food carts rent space inside a parking lot. Carts often form a pod. A pod is a collection of several food carts in one parking lot. The carts are amazing and vary in type of food they serve. Some carts only serve one item. Others have a small menu.

Since being in Portland we have had the majority of our meals from different pods in different parts of the city. We have been downtown. To the Southeast. And this morning we will be heading to breakfast in the NE.

Last nights pod in the SE had ten carts in one pod. They had an ice cream cart, a pie cart (sweet and savory pies), wood grilled pizza, Indian food, Central American cuisine, Fusion, A Waffle cart (yes, they put sweet or savory food in a waffle),a beer cart, and a mac and cheese cart (just to name a few).


I have eaten so many different types of food. Met some of the most unique people. Young or at least young at heart entrepreneurs just trying to live a dream.  I am leaving Portland today, wondering, how to do formal restaurants survive here? 



On our last day in Portland, we woke up to rain (I think it rains a lot there!) The rain did not deter us one bit from getting in our last meal at a pod. This time in the cities Northeast section.


This pod had several carts designated with breakfast food.



Koi Fusion was closed, so we did not get to try it. But what a pretty cart!




The girls opted to get savory waffles from Big Top Waffles. They also had sweet waffles.

Miss Medical Student got a savory waffle with cream cheese, spinach, tomato, and two over easy eggs on top!

While our friend Leslie opted for greek yougurt, banana's, strawberries, and fresh granola on hers.

I on the other hand, stopped by The Big Egg for a PDX sandwich. Toast, grainy mustard, cheese, bacon and eggs!

 I am absolutely leaving Portland happy and totally in love with the Food Pods! Who knows, maybe some day, I will move to Portland and run a food cart!
 


Thursday, October 27, 2011

Girls Weekend Starts TODAY!

I have been running around all week getting ready for today.

The house is clean.

The laundry is done.

I have all my Halloween tasks completed.

The family has enough food to last them for the weekend.

I have packed my bags.

I have printed my tickets.

I even checked in online.

I am heading to Portland, Oregon today!!

It is time to visit Miss Medical Student.

I have two task left: The Short Chic's preschool Halloween party and baking brownies for The Boy's pre-season basketball game.

Then I am leaving on a jet plane!

But hey....while I am gone, you still have a chance to enter my FIRST EVER GIVEAWAY!

The details are H E R E ! ! !

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Halloween: Chapter 2

I showed you all my Short Chic's Halloween costume (check it out here).  She is going to be Princess Jasmine.

But I need to show you all The Boy's costume.

These costumes have been months in the making. NO, silly! They are not that elaborate. The story has been developing over the past several months.

The Easter Bunny gave The Short Chic a Disney Princess CD this past year. We listen to it a lot. And being in gender roles BIG TIME, The Short Chic will only allow The Boy to sing along to songs that have a boy in them.

Quickly, A Whole New World has become their song.

So, she is Princess Jasmine and she asked her brother to be Aladdin.

Here is my  her Aladdin!


His costume was super easy. A pair of  old pants. His brown loafers. And two t-shirts. One purple, one brown. I just took a pair of scissors to the t-shirts and started cutting. I turned the purple one into a vest. I cut a ring around the brown one to make a belt.

Do you all remember in the late 80's and early 90's when those stretchy knit belts were in style? Well, I remember them and fashioned his belt after them.

Next on her list?

She wants to turn the family dog into Princess Jasmine's pet tiger!

Stay tuned, this saga is not over yet!

Sunday, October 23, 2011

DIY Yarn Wig

My Short Chic is planning to be Princess Jasmine for Halloween.






















My original plan was to dye her long hair with one of those spray cans that temporarily does the job. Then she cut her own hair (check that out here: Operating Without a License) and left me needing a back up plan.

So, I decided to make a yarn wig. Can't be hard right?

I gathered up some supplies:

  1. black yarn
  2. a frosting cap from my local beauty supply shop
  3. and a darning needle.

If you have never seen a frosting cap, they are simple plastic cap that has holes all over it. It came with a little visor and neck flap that I cut off. It also comes with ties to tie the cap under your chin. I have yet to decide if I am going to use these or not, so I have not cut them off.

The first step was to figure out how long the hair needed to be. Then double it. I was planning to go in one hole of the frosting cap and out another.  Luckily for me, my kitchen island was just the perfect width.  I taped one end down and wrapped the yarn, around and around, and around and around the island. Then I cut the yarn making it all one length.

Next, I threaded the yarn onto the darning needle. Put it in one hole of the cap and back out another.  I felt like too much of the plastic cap showed through so I tied a simple knot and moved on. I used some old embroidery skills to make sure I was using a running stitch.

Pull it through


tie a knot

It was not a difficult process. I was even able to pack it all up and take it with us on a recent road trip.

 She absolutely loves it! She is running around the house pretending to be Princess Jasmine and coming up with all kinds of cute things she will say when she is trick or treating.

Spookerrific Halloween Fun!  And the best part, it only cost me less than $6.00 to make her wig.

I've linked up:

It's a Blog Party

The DIY Showoff

Tatertots and Jello

Under The Table and Dreaming

Sumo's Sweet Stuff

Design Dazzle





Saturday, October 22, 2011

Our Prediction for Winter

I know!  I am sorry I am talking about winter when we are only half way through Autumn. But the weather is getting colder. We even turned our heat on this past week. The leaves are falling from the trees. The days are shorter than they were.

As the temperatures dip lower, you can't help but wonder what type of winter will we have? Will it be snowy? Icy  Could we get lucky and have a mild winter?

There is an old farmer's tale that a fruit can tell us what type of winter we will have. The fruit is a persimmon. The farmer's tale says that if you cut a persimmon seed in half you will see either a fork, a spoon, or a knife. 
  • If you see a fork, you are likely to experience a mild winter with light, soft, dry snow.  
  • If you see a spoon, you are likely to experience a hard winter. With lots of heavy snow, therefore needing a shovel (spoon).
  • If you see a knife, you are likely to experience hard winds and ice, that will cut right through you. 
Today, we visited with my Momma up in the country. She had collected some persimmons a few weeks ago and still had them around. They were not in good shape for eating but they were just great for cutting open the seeds. 

This is a persimmon fruit. It might be a little past its peak. But the seeds inside of it are still green and perfect for predicting the winter ahead of us.

I smooshed the persimmon apart and pulled out the seeds. I think there are about three seeds per persimmon. I tried to pick out the seeds that were a little "fatter" than the others. It gave me more to work with.


This is a persimmon Seed, after I have washed and dried it all up.  Take a knife and cut the seed in half. 

And, the prediction for this years winter.....


A spoon! 

Lots of snow. Lots of shoveling.  At least we have a heads up, we can start stocking up and preparing to be snowed in!  Well, that is if you believe a persimmon seed.

Thursday, October 20, 2011

The Tale of SassyShoeDiva and KCBikerGuy

This may sound like a commercial but I have to admit, I met my husband on Match.com.


my Pinterest inspired anniversary photo!

The year was 2005. I had been a single mom since 1998 and I was ready to share my life with someone. But, being a single mom, my only interaction was with people at work. (Have I told you all I am social worker? Which means I work with mostly women!) I was done with bar scene. I did not have an endless supply of single friends to introduce me to their single friends. And to top if off, the pizza delivery guys were just too young for me.

So, I put an ad on Match.com. Online I became SassyShoeDiva. My first night I did a quick search of men who lived within 10 miles on my home and I found KCHarleyGuy. I winked at him. The next day, he emailed me. But so did a lot of other men. It was kinda overwhelming. But this one stood out. We spent a lot of time chatting, emailing, and talking on the phone.

KCHarleyGuy's bike. Taken at the first bike rally we attended as a couple,
three months of dating

Sassy Shoe Diva and KCHarleyGuy had their first date on a Thursday. He melted my heart the minute I opened the door. He had these massive big arms. And these soft brown eyes. He picked me up on his Harley and we went out for ice cream. I had never been on a motorcycle before. He had to tell me to change my shoes. I did not even own a pair of tennis shoes at this point!  He was not happy about the cropped pants I was wearing but we compromised.  I found a pair of closed toe shoes with minimal heel and I got to keep the cropped pants as long as I wore a jacket.

KCBikerGuy's hibiscus plants. This is just like the flower he gave me  on our date.


When we got to the ice cream shop, he opened his side saddle and handed me a gorgeous bright yellow hibiscus flower he had grown himself. He melted my heart again! We stayed up so late talking. He was so comfortable!  That night he "left" behind his t-shirt. (Oh, this is not an x-rated story, he was wearing a long sleeved shirt over his short sleeved short for riding!) I knew that was a good sign that he wanted to see me again as much as I wanted to see him.

Two days after our first date, we randomly ran into each other at my local Quick Trip (convenience store). I found out it was his Quick Trip too. We lived less than 3 miles from each other, visited the same Quick Trip all the time, and met each other on Match.com!! How funny was that!  That day, at Quick Trip, he gave me a hug and said, "We are going to have fun together." I walked away thinking, "yes, we are!"

That weekend, he was out of town on a bike ride. I had multiple dates with other men from Match. None of them measured up to KCHarleyGuy. He called me when he got home from his bike ride. And he kept calling me. By the end of the next week, we were dating. We tease each other that was just a few months ago. But truth be told, it was six years ago.

We both signed up for three months of Match.com. We both cancelled after the first month.

SassyShoeDiva married KCHarley Guy in 2007. He continues to melt my heart.


Today we celebrated our fourth wedding anniversary. Sometime during my chemotherapy my fingers changed. I could no longer wear my wedding band/engagement ring. So, I told KCHarleyGuy that the only thing I wanted for our anniversary was to be able to wear my rings again. He took me back to our Jeweler and paid for a re-sizing and for the rhodium plating to be replaced.  My rings now fit and are just as sparkly as the day he gave them to me.


When we got married, we picked out a ring of Titanium for him. It looked cool but it was the wrong size and kept falling off of his finger. So, it ended up hanging on my jewelry stand. In addition to working on my rings, we also purchased him a brand new white gold simple band. One that fits! He promises to look married to me from here forward.

Thank you KCHarleyGuy! You have completed my life. You are my voice of reason to my reactionary self. You let me fly as high as I want to but pull me back down when I need it the most. You are my rock.  

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

TuTu Cute by Marie {GIVEAWAY}

THIS GIVEAWAY HAS CLOSED! 
You can still visit TuTu Cute by Marie for some awesome tutu's. She will even do custom orders!

I am so excited to be doing my very first ever blog GIVEAWAY and I am even more excited that Marie has agreed to be a part of it! First of all, I have a confession to make. I absolutely love tutu's! I was never a dancer myself and maybe that is why I love them so much. Anyone can be a dancer when they have a tutu!
Maybe that is part of the attraction for me, they are just magical. Anything is possible in a fantasy world.


To help me celebrate my upcoming one year post chemo milestone, Marie from TuTu Cute by Marie has volunteered to giveaway a Tinker Bell inspired tutu created by her. Marie's collection of tutu's are available for anyone to see on her Facebook page, TuTu Cute by Marie. My personal favorite is the black/pink/Minnie Mouse, but if I am honest they are all TuTu Cute!


Marie chose to giveaway this Tinker Bell tutu because to her Tinker Bell is about anything being possible if you believe. And having fought cancer, I can tell you, I said that over and over to myself during every treatment of chemotherapy.  Marie's Tinker Bell tutu is two toned, bright pink and bright green. It is tied to a Tinker Bell ribbon which makes the waist adjustable.  Check out the photos:



The holiday's are coming up and this would make a perfect little gift for a short chic in your life.

To Enter:

1. "Like" TuTu Cute by Marie on Facebook.
2. Leave her a comment and tell her that It's My Life sent you. While you are there, check out her tutu's.
3. Come back here and leave me a comment and let me know which tutu was your favorite.

The winner will be randomly drawn here at It's My Life on Tuesday morning, November 1, 2011. (I would have done it sooner, but I going to be traveling next week and won't be home!)

GOOD LUCK!!

I have linked up to the following sites:

Sunday, October 16, 2011

Preparing for Halloween

I made good use of the day to decorate for the upcoming spooky event called HALLOWEEN!

I have spent so much time focusing on The Short Chic's bedroom,I neglected Halloween.  I found that most of the good decorations are gone! The aisles at Michaels and Hobby Lobby are full of Christmas.

I pulled out all of my Halloween storage boxes yesterday and started digging in. Right in the middle of box two, The Short Chic brought over three of her little neighborhood friends. The oldest one took one look at my living room and said, "Man, your house is messy!"  What I really wanted to say to this pint sized adult is that she should learn to not speak so freely in strangers homes, but what I said out loud is, "Well, yes, I am in the process of decorating."

So today, I have decorated and cleaned.

I put the football games on three different TV's and wondered around the house from one project to the next. In the end, my house is clean. And spooky!

Normally my husband has a rather large framed diploma in this spot. Today, while he was napping, I moved it. I keep expecting a rather large yell but he has not said a word.  I found these window panes at a yard sale. I bought 4 of them for $1.00.

Vinyl lettering behind my couch.

How cute is this Frankenstein candy bowl. I found him last year on clearance and he has been in storage waiting for his debut.


 This is my entryway table. A silver sparkly skull, a rat and a black chandelier. Cute. Wait, I mean SPOOKY!
 My new door wreath. I found the inspiration for this on Pinterest. But try as I might, all the black sparkly skulls were gone. So I have used black crows. They kinda blend in among the feathers. Overall, it looks good on my door.
My kitchen table. A jar of skulls. Two glitter pumpkins, a silver skull, and a rat.

To further get us in the spirit of Halloween, my husband took me on a date last night. We went to the local high school to watch a drama class' production of Dracula. We decided to take The Short Chic with us. Our logic was how scary can a high school play really be?

Well, the play started off with actors running from the back of the theatre to the front, screaming as loudly as they could! The Short Chic just happened to be sitting backwards in her chair at this time and saw them coming just seconds after we heard them. I just kept whispering to her, "they are just pretending, they are just pretending!"

We were also very excited to find out that one of the actors was The Short Chic's dance instructor. She is also the daughter of one of my husband's friends.

When the production dimmed the lights to change the set, she whispered back to me, "I do not like it when it is dark." I told her they turned the lights off so we could not see what they were doing. The next time they turned the lights off, she said, "they do not want us to see what they are doing!"

She was also very concerned when the actors left the stage. "Mommy, are they coming back?" I told her yes, we would see them again. For the rest of the play, she kept saying, "don't worry, they will be back."

This morning I asked her if she liked the play and she said "YES! It was a little spooky but it was just pretend!"  She told me she thought her dance teacher, Miss Leah, was a very pretty princess and she loved her dress. Princess? I did not have the heart or knowledge to explain that Miss Leah was not a Princess. She was a vampire!!


Saturday, October 15, 2011

Orange, Pink, and Green Little Girls Room


Drumroll please!

After nearly two months of working on this project, I am calling it good. (well maybe not, but for my husband's benefit today I am calling it good!)

My daughter, The Short Chic, is three and half years old. Up to the point of starting this project, she did not sleep in her own bed. She slept with my husband and I. In an attempt to whoo her into her own bedroom, I decided to give her a "new" bedroom.

Her "old" bedroom was smaller. Way too small for her and all of her toys. So, I turned my spare bedroom into her "new" bedroom.  Her favorite colors are orange and green. One day watching television, I saw an advertisement.  I have no idea what the ad was for, I was fixated on the painting in the background. Thank goodness for DVR, I immediately paused the image and sat staring at it forever.

A plan developed in my head.

I cautiously emailed my husband and told him I wanted to paint diamonds onto my daughters room. It is a good thing we were miles apart and communicating through the internet otherwise he would have been yellin! I gave him some space and started to do my research. I found a blog that gave instructions on how to paint an argyle wall. To my surprise, it is a blog I follow. Design Dazzle not only give instructions and photos they also have a link to a calculate that totally helped us paint diamonds on one wall of our "new" bedroom.
 I chose one wall to be our focal point. It was painted a darker shade of orange than the other three. After we had the base color of the accent wall painted, we measured the wall off into squares. Inside each square, we found the center, connected the dots and made a diamond. We have three rows of diamonds and about 7 columns. I decided to use three colors; The base color, a pink and a green. I taped off and painted each color one at a time.

 My Short Chic was really into the idea of helping create her "new" room. Unfortunately, painting just was not going to be the way she helped. Precision is not in her vocabulary right now.
 After the second color was dried, I taped off for the third and final color. I have to admit it was sometimes confusing to keep all the lines straight.
This is the final accent wall look.

My next project was refinishing her letters. She had wooden letters that spell out her name in her "old" bedroom but they were now the wrong color. I blogged about her letters here.  I love the overall look and so happy I tried my hand at mod podging!


I next took a stab at curtains. My first attempt failed miserably. Then, I was talking to my Mom on the phone and she mentioned something about just dying the curtains. Another light bulb came one and I started over again. I dyed plain white cotton tab panel curtains orange. The looked good. Just not enough. So, I sewed on several rows of different types of ribbon. These curtains, I love! Well, except maybe I can't sew a straight line, which is why I am only showing you one part of the curtain up close. Don't want you pointing out my sewing errors!  I was so happy to find butterfly curtain rods at Target.


My next project was a tutu table that I blogged about here.  I am loving Pinterest and have to say it has been a huge source of inspiration for me!



I found the cute orange lamp at TJ Max for only $30.00 Could not have been a more perfect find!

I also found this crown at Hobby Lobby. When I bought it, it was gold. Knowing that it did not match our decor so much, I spray painted it bright pink. I hung it right above her full length mirror. Every little Princess should have a crown, right?

Then I made this cute bow holder. I took an unfinished wooden frame from Hobby Lobby and painted it white. Then I stapled ribbon to it and hung her bows up. When I put all of her bows in one spot I realized I might have an addiction to bows.
The next project was also something inspired by a blogger. I begged my husband to put up rain-gutter shelving in her bedroom.  Never in my wildest dreams would I have thought it would turn out as cute as it did!  A ten foot section of rain-guttering cost less than $6.00. My husband cut it in half, enough for two shelves. We purchased end caps for $6.00 each (total $12.00 as we had two shelves). Then we purchased four support brackets at $2.30 each. The total cost for these two shelves was less than $30.00 and that includes the stickers I added afterwards to make it look all cute!

The final piece was finding the perfect bedding. It came last night in a box from Overstock. I had picked out some bedding when I started this project two months ago but it was not my favorite. I was happy to find something I liked much better  on Overstock.com.

I hinted in the beginning I might have other ideas for the room. I would still like to put in some type of closet organization. This Short Chic has a lot of clothing!

So now that I have you bored stiff: here are the photos of the finished room:





And the end of this story: The Short Chic has slept in her own room, in her own bed since we finished the painting in her room. It makes my heart swell every time someone new comes to our home and she ushers them upstairs to "see her new room!"  I also decided to keep the bulk of toys out of her room. Instead, I am converting the closet in her "old" room into a play closet. 


I am going to take some time off from decorating this room and enjoy the fall. My next project, turning her "old" room into a guest bedroom.

I linked up to:

Sassy Sites!