Thursday, January 3, 2013

Handmade Love Knot Crotchet Dress for Sophia


This is a love-knot dress that I crotchet for Sophia when I was pregnant with her. I couldn't imagine one day she would grow up perfectly in it until today!

When I was taking these pictures, I had to admit that it was extremely hard to take pictures of kids. Sophia starts to hate headbands, bows.. basically anything that was put on her head, except her hair ;) I will have to wait til one day she falls in love with all the hair accessories that I bought for her and appreciates her mommy for the effort to turn her into a cutie everywhere she goes! Nahh, she is the most beautiful thing to her mommy already :D


                Oopsie, excuse the diaper ;)










Dear Mom, Thanks For The Genes!

I had gestational diabetes when I was pregnant with Sophia, which meant I was strictly on a diet. I counted the carbs I ate, I measured my drinks, I timed my blood checkings, I checked my pees every morning. I still remember I was sitting at my dinning table and counting the twisted pasta because I could only eat 63 pieces according to my calculation. I counted the chips for snack time, about 12-15 pieces.

And the most terrifying thing: I was always hungry. All I wanted at that time was to pop the baby out so badly so that my diabetes would go away. I even wrote a list of things I would eat right after labor, and let me tell you, the list was long!

So after Sophia was born, I had all the reasons in the world to eat whatever I wanna eat: to satisfy the hungry beast in me, and to have more breastmilk for Sophia. My weight of course when UP! From size 0 jeans straight to size 4 or sometimes 6, so scary that I preferred to jump into the easy-to-wear dresses that just slightly hug my body. And the worst thing is: no one told me that I was fat. I guess 1) they love me too much that they don't want to hurt my feelings or 2) I am always beautiful in their eyes.

By the time I was on a vacation to Miami with my family, I was fat as a flawn! It was 5 months after labor. Even I myself didn't realize that I reached a point that defines "fat" is "FAT", not "fat" is "you-are-just-wholesomely-gaining-weight-because-you-are-nursing". Until one day I looked at the pictures we just took from the trip to the Southernmost Point of the US below:

Picture taken at the Southernmost Point in Key West, FL with my beloved family ;)

OH MY GOD!! I asked my gorgeous sister-in-law and beautiful mommy that I was fat like a pig in that dress, why no one stopped me from stepping out in that dress and even posing so many photos. They both said there was nooooo wayyyy I was fat! I LOVE them both to death!!

Lucky enough, I don't have to do any exercises to come back to my pre-pregnant weight, ever! When my body "realizes" it's time to be back to how it used to be me, then it finds its way! Dear mom, thanks for the genes! Now I am wearing my size 0 jeans again! 9 months on, 12 months off! I am so happy to be me again!

Picture of the fabulous me in my size 0 jean will be updated tomorrow if my husband or Willie know how to point and shot a perfect picture, which I doubt!

Tuesday, January 1, 2013

Bỏng Gạo or Rice Crispy



I still remember that bỏng gạo - rice crispy - was one of my favorite childhood snack in Vietnam. Why? It was cheap enough for a kid to afford within a tight allowance. With just 2 cents at that time, you could buy a hat full of rice crispy, and it could last a loooong time if you know how to eat and save, eat and save. Unlike my big brother, he loved to eat a mouthful of rice crispy, but not me. I preferred sitting in a quiet corner and enjoying one by one. 


The other day when wandering the cereal isle at Walmart looking for some cheerios for Sophia, I bumped into this:

Kellogg's Whole Grain Toasted Brown Rice Crispy



I'm so glad I followed my heart to give this a try, hoping that it would give me a trip back to my childhood. And yes, it does!! It's crispy, tasty, and above all, it made from brown rice. It is perfect for me when I am in the process of controlling my sugar level. Even Willie and Sophia love it @-@






Just realized this is the first food that I ate in 2013. Way to start a new year!


Willie's Big Boy Room

Here is Willie's big-boy room. Willie loves Lego, transformer, power ranger. If someone asks him what his color is, he will answer without a second thought that "Blue is my favorite color". We tried to blend in the blue with the existing Sherwin-Williams Heart of Palm lime green color.




The shelves were made exclusively for Willie from mommy. You can find more about these shelves here. The shelves are full of little pieces of memory from our beloved ones. The cross-stitch piece of craft from his Auntie Misa, pencil drawing art from Auntie Lan Anh...




Little corner for cars and robots.




Willie is practicing his reading with LeapFrog talky pen and books, wearing a headphone so his sister can sleep in the next room.



First DIY.. The $20 Shelves for Willie's Big Boy Room

Like most of Asian families, Willie shared bed with us since he was born. So it was very hard for us to talk him into sleeping in his own room. We tried several times when he was 2, 3, and 4 to no avail.
Willie started watching Caillou on PBS Kids recently and he absolutely loves the guy. Then one day, he demanded his own room and own bed, just like Caillou. THANK YOU, CAILLOU!!




Afraid that Willie would change his mind of sleeping-in-his-own-bed, we were in a hurry to set up a room for him. We bought a bunk bed from Walmart to lure him in the "climbing, having fun, and sleeping" process, which he LOVES! He uses his bunk bed as a fortress, a tent, a house, and a bed in its true meaning.

So, I thought it would be nice to have a little touch of style in his room with some shelves. I came up with a DIY wooden shelf from Anna, and the selling point is that IT IS UNDER $10. Who doesn't love a beautiful shelf with an awesome price tag? If you need instructions, visit Anna's website. Or you can also view it at Shanty 2 Chic for some inspirations.

So here is the shelf that I made for Willie. It is also my first DIY wood project. Let me know if you are interested in building one. It's super easy!




A Little Note...


My name is Huong Pham. I am a wife to a wonderful husband and his name is Linh. I have 2 amazing kids: Willie is 5, and Sophia just turned 1. We are proudly from Vietnam but we have been living in the US for yearsss... too long that we have to count every time we talked about it.

I love my husband very much and he is everything I've asked for in a man. I might be talky-talky and fussy-fussy to him from time to time, but I love him to death. My kids are just sooooo sweet. They adore their parents (at least the 5 years old does, the 1 year old can just baa baa booo booo now, so we are not very sure).

This is how Willie is taking care of his little sister Sophia when mommy and daddy are busy.
Willie is riding his motorbike and pulling his sister with him. Sophia loves sitting in the basket tho!


I love to shop but I don't like buying things when they are not on sale or without a coupon, a promotion code, a voucher, you name it!! Shopping becomes both my weakness and my strength, I must say! You will find out how I manage this hobby on my blog, without breaking the bank of course, and... wait... even making money when shopping.

I love my house. I believe we are living in our dream house. I will share about our house here on my blog.

I love food and eating good food. I love to cook when I am in the mood, and my foods mostly turn out very yummy (got praise from husband alllll the timeeeee)

I love decorating my house, building little bit of this and that around my house.

I love traveling. We visit Vietnam every year. Our family are in Vietnam so we are very excited every time we go back.

This blog is the place I will share our life with YOU, and I am very excited to have you on board with us!