July 30, 2012

I Suck at Nail Art Sparkly Nails.

So you guys.  The Olympics are in full swing and I'm rolling on my Ravellenic Project and yet I'm going to post about my nails again.  The response I got last time was so much fun so let's just go with it.... Remember to link up with my Ravellenic Social Media Link Up to share your projects!

So I tried another pintrest inspired manicure the other day.... All I wanted to do was paint the tips silver.  Seemed simple enough.  Plus I wanted to go to bed so I thought this would be a quicker option than full on painting them.  Yeah...


I suck at nail art.

So I decided to try to fix it by doing the whole sparkly nail gradient thing I've seen all over pintrest lately.  So next I painted a coat of Sally Hansen Strobe Light that went almost to the bottom of the nails but not quite:

Then I did another coat that started about halfway up from the last one.  Then one more coat of sparkles just on the tips.  Finished the whole thing off with a quick top coat and the end result is this:

Another pint rest manicure of nonsense. I like it!  #nails #nailart

I love it!  And the manicure lasted almost a full week.  That's a crazy long time for someone who once the nails chip goes back to chewing them.  Also it took less time than actually painting them would have.  Totally a win.  I will definitely be doing this again.  To sum up here's what I used:

Sally Hansen in Strobe Light,  Essie Good to Go Topcoat, Beyond Perfect by Sally Hansen base coat, Finger Paints Key to My Art.
Yay for fancy nails!

I think I"m going to have to figure out how to not suck at nail art, though, considering that I showed NO restraint at the Sinful Colors 99 cent sale at Walgreens last week.  I went 2 nights in a row and took my daughter with me once.  Which means I have something like 14 new colors.  Which is more than double the total nail polish I owned up until that point.  Which also means I can now do things like this:
Yay sinful colors!!! #nails
Sinful Colors in Mint Apple with a coat of All about You over top.

Yeah letting my 3yo pick out colors means that I have some random that I would never pick for myself.  But I"m embracing it. And that manicure lasted 5 days showing no wear!  Amazing for such incredibly cheap polish.  I ended up taking it off last night because I was bored of it not because it needed redone.  Now I think I'm going to try to go bare for a few days as the ultimate test of if I still chew my nails... we shall see....

July 27, 2012

Ravellenic Games Soial Media Link Up!

So before I get to that... thank you so much for your opinions on my Olympic Shawl!  I think I'm going to go with the majority and do the Fragile Hearts.  It's just so perfect with my inspiration!  I am still debating on yarn, though:

Decisions, decisions... #ravellenicgames #knit #knitting #yarn
While the Mulled Wine is pretty and would be georgeous in this pattern I just knit with it for my Color Affection.  So I think I'm feeling the bright pink Daiquiri a bit more... I will probably decide at the absolute last second and be winding my yarn after the games have officially begun.  Either way I'm super excited to get started!

I think I might be going pink.... #ravellenicgames #knit #knitting
Anyways! Last night I was searching Twitter for the hashtag #ravellenic games and I started thinking.... I wish I knew who all was tweeting and playing along.  And what about blogs?  There have to be so many blogs out there covering this... but how do I find them?  And Instagram will be loaded with awesome Ravellenic projects.... I wish there was a list.

Let's make a list!

Ravellenic Games Social Media Link Up:

The Rules:
1.)  You can link to any social media site except for Ravelry.  So your blog, twitter feed, a podcast, facebook page, vlog, instagram, whatever you want.  However there are a whole bunch of amazing and awesome ways to search for participants within Ravelry so this is not for that.

2.)  You can link up THREE of your social media sites!  Yes THREE! I"m linking to my blog, twitter, and Instagram because I think that's where I will be most active in showing off my Ravellenic project.

3.)  Please follow/like/subscribe to at least a few other participants in the list.  The whole point of this is to follow along and support each other throughout the games!  Plus I'd love it if you followed me, too...

4.)  If you want to grab a button and let others know you are participating:

Ravellenic Games Social Media Link Up
<div align="center"><a href="http://www.lifeincleveland.com/2012/07/ravellenic-games-soial-media-link-up.html" title="Ravellenic Games Social Media Link Up"><img src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-qaG7vQvNLo8/UBKdw_7OaKI/AAAAAAAABkU/nfaZ6C2JQwo/s1600/Ravellenic+Games+150x150.jpg" alt="Ravellenic Games Social Media Link Up" style="border:none;" /></a></div>

Let the Games begin!!!!

July 26, 2012

Ravellenic Games.

So.  You guys.  The Olympics start tomorrow!  Which means the Ravellenic Games start tomorrow!  And.... I still have no idea what I"m doing.  We're about 24 hours away from cast on and I'm FREAKING OUT.  And maybe need some second opinions or a glass of wine or something.

Because I really wanted to do another Fiberman Triathlon.  I loved the idea of dying, spinning, and knitting.  I even had a pattern picked out and the fiber purchased and ready to dye.  But I've been training and I have learned that a spinning wheel and a 15month old toddler DO NOT MIX.  Seriously it's a disaster.  Trying to spin with him around is and exercise in frustration and woe.

Plus, honestly, it's a million degrees out there.  I have no desire to touch wool in a million degree weather.

So.... I got nothing.  I've been stressing about this all week... and I just... I don't.... I need to get over not being able to do what I planned and move on.  And I'm having issues with that.

So I've spent an insane amount of time cruising Ravelry for ideas and here's what I've decided so far.

I will be using Silk Road - the Destination Yarn silk yarn.  I won't be dying it during the games but it will be my handdyed so that makes me feel a little better about the situation.  And I don't think you can feel bad knitting with something so luxurious.  Not possible.

Silk Road

I haven't decided what color yet.  But that's another issue.

Silk Road
Probably this?  Or maybe Daiquiri - a bright pink color?
I want to knit a lace shawl.  The yarn choice kindof drove that decision.  Plus I think a one-skein shawl would be a challenge but not an unattainable one.  Part of being realistic about the whole thing is that I need to acknowledge that I am in a different place than I was for the last Olympics as far as other commitments go.  I can't just ignore everything else and knit for two weeks solid.  Sigh.

I want it to have beads.  Maybe lots of beads.  I'm realistic but this is still the Olympics.  Let's raise the bar a bit shall we?

I want it to have pointy bits.  So many of the shawl patterns I've looked at remind me of the gothic architecture in London.  Like this:

So that's the imagry I'm going with in this shawl.

On to the options!

1.)  Quite Continental by Boo Knits:

Love that it's a crescent shape.  Love that the diamonds would be easy to memorize.   But I'm not sure it fits my Gothic Architecture imagery...

2.)  Fragile Heart also by Boo Knits:


That lace looks like Gothic arches to me.  Perfect.  But I think I like the previous shawl better...

3.)  Lyrica Euterpe by Romi Hill:

Lyrica Euterpe

Yay on the Gothic Arch lace - love the circular to triangle shape.  But the picot cast off of the previous shawl is just so pretty....

So.  What do you guys think?  1, 2, or 3???  Help?

July 23, 2012

I blame pintrest for the following nonsense.

So.  My entire family is battling some sortof strep throat like thing, we're still car shopping, my color affection is still not over, and I have no idea what to do for the Ravellennic Games.  Things are generally a mess around here.  So how about a post about my nails.

Wait, what?

Yeah.  I blame pintrest for this nonsense that has been happening around here:

Serious nonsense:

Such nonsense
I don't even know what I was trying to do there.  This one, however, is competely the fault of my 3yo:

We match!  #nails #nailpolish #kid

Although the sparkly accent I blame on pintrest.

Essie Tour de Finance with an accent coat of Strobe Light on one nail.
My daughter picked out the sparkly color and told me that she needed to paint her nails sparkly before we went to the pool because sparkly nails would help her swim like a mermaid.  Obviously.  What can I say.  Kid knows how to put together a look:


But the thing is.... all of this nonsense is better then the alternative.  You see I chew my nails.  Really awfully.  And for my entire life my hands have looked like this:

OOOH it's BAD.
Recently something snapped.  I didn't want my hands to look like that anymore.  I wanted them to look like all of the crazy fun manicures that pop up in my pintrest stream.  That was two months ago.  Now my nails look like this:

That is the longest my nails have ever been.  Ever.  In my entire life.  So while it may not look like much it's a pretty big deal for me.  So yay for pintrest for finally motivating me to stop with the chewing!  I still have no idea how to make a sock bun work, though:

Pintrest made it look so easy!  Sigh...

I'm linking up with a Mani-Monday party.  Because why not.

July 18, 2012


So.  Those of you who follow me on twitter know a whole bunch of business has been going down.  Car Shopping!  Hair dye!  Wine!  But before I get to all of that nonsense this is happening:

He was so busy playing w his friend he didn't realize he was standing on his own!
The Dude so distracted by his buddy that he didn't realize that he was standing.  On his own.

It all started last week at Wade Oval Wed.  He took a few tentative kindof more flinging than walking steps between Matt and my mom:

We worked so hard for those few steps:

And then... that was it.  All week I've been coaxing him.  Trying to eek a few more steps out of him.  And he hasn't really been interested.  Did it for attention but not really as a means for getting from point A to point B.  Until today.  Today something clicked into place and he finally decided that walking was a superior means of transportation:

By the time Matt got home he was able to walk the entire length of our living room.  Twice:

I think he's officially a toddler now!!!  Seems like just yesterday his sister was taking her first steps (she looks so young in that post!)   And just because this is such a video heavy post here's a link to The Dude's favorite video.  Really.

Yay walking!!!

Edited to add:  The crazy pj's outfit he is wearing in the last video was picked out by his sister.  Because of course it was.

July 14, 2012

Vacation… All I ever wanted, Vacation, had to get away!

So before we went on our Accidental Vacation my friend Lori Beth offered to write a guest post for while we were gone.  And then the accidental part of the vacation happened and it all kindof fell apart.  She still wrote it and this is still a good read.  So we'll put it in the better late than never file.  Oh I added the pictures because I can't handle a post with no pictures:

The Life in Cleveland Clan has gone on vacation.  And while Jeanne is away she has graciously allowed me to be a guest poster on her blog.  So thank you.  Let me introduce myself, I’m Jeanne’s Maid of Honor, a title I’ve taken as a lifetime appointment.  As Maid of Honor – 6 years post wedding – I don’t really have many duties, save for planning trips, picking out the white wines and summarizing the TV shows our friends don’t have the time to watch.  I watch a lot of TV, I could call it my hobby but that makes me sound sad.  So for the purposes of this post let’s pretend I have a job as a TV critic/blogger to make me sound cool and hip.

Her job is never done.
Jeanne suggested I talk about True Blood… but I think we all know that I’m gonna talk about the fine programming on ABC Family.  Here’s whyI can’t stop.  I might need to join a group or something.  One that doesn’t exist on the IMDB message boards for 90s child stars trying to make a comeback.  I’m very close to removing Secret Life from my DVR list, but I think you all know me better than that.

This weekend ABC Family is playing The Count of Monte Cristo 2 times a day along with the Prince of Persia and the Pirates of the Caribbean.  ABCF likes to do this – find movies they think fit well together and then play them as a “marathon” all weekend.  I guess these have been paired because they are all a “swashbuckling good time.”  Did you miss the Prince of Persia at 8pm on Friday? Don’t worry, catch it again at 2pm on Saturday, or 10am on Sunday.  And every time it will be an “ABC Family movie event.” I mean, how can it not?  Have you seen those special effects?

Oh and in case you missed “A Walk to Remember” when it was popular, don’t worry, it’ll play on ABCF in about a month paired with “The Notebook”.   Oh, and you claimed to have only seen “A Cinderella Story” once?  You’re lying.  That movie comes on all the time, and you watch it every time.  Because right after that plays “Another Cinderella Story”, and you love to hate that movie.  Ever wonder what happens to Paige after she agrees to marry Edward after the Prince & Me?  Don’t worry there’s 3 more “Prince & Me” movies to fill in those details, and ABCF will be playing a marathon soon I’m sure.  Probably as a runner up to the new ABCF original movie, “Prince & Me 5: Heiry Situation”

 Don’t worry, you don’t have to watch it… I will.  It’s the sacrifices I make for my friends.  Did I pretend I didn’t want to see Step Up 2 the Streets? No, I bought the DVD.  Have I seen all the Center Stage sequels – of course.  Do I watch all the original programming on ABCF, including Jane By Design? Yes.  If it’s a movie with a Princess plot, I’m there.  Dance movie, do you have to ask.  Has the plot already been done by Saved by the Bell – yes please.  I watch these shows and movies because, it’s not just a hobby, it’s my job. 

Thanks, LB!  Although I still think you should have posted about True Blood.  If only so that I had an excuse to include this:

July 13, 2012

The Dude's Base Smoothie Recipe.

So you guys.  Smoothies.  Holy crap.  I'm not sure why it took me 32 years to discover these treats of amazing but DUDE.  A few weeks ago we got plain yogurt in our CSA bag and since then we've been straight-up addicts.

Story time = SNOOTHIE TIME! (the girl calls them Snoothies)
 My daughter summed it up best when we gave her a smoothie instead of her usual bedtime snack:

"This is WAY better than blueberries."

Amen, sister.  But that's nothing compared with her brother's reaction.  He basically loses his mind the second he hears the blender going.

You have no idea how good this is.
We've tried quite a few varieties and I think I've perfected my base recipe.  So I thought I'd share and spread the addiction.




2 cups of plain yogurt - the CSA yogurt was amazing but Dannon is ok, too.
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
Scant tablespoon (more like a half tablespoon) of sugar
Ice to fill blender
Fruit and/or other nonsense

So.  First you put in the base ingredients:


Then put in the fruit and other nonsense:


 Then fill the blender to the top with ice:


 Then blend into oblivion:

Done!  This recipe makes enough for two adults and two children.  I serve it to them in the double walled tumblers - or as my daughter calls them "Mommy coffee cups" - so that they don't spill snoothie all over the couch.

Some ones we've tried:

Peach:  Add 3 peaches to the base recipe
Peanut Butter and Banana:  Add 2 tablespoons of Peanut Butter and one Banana to the base recipe
Peach Banana:  Add 2 peaches and one banana to the base recipe
This is our favorite so far.
Honestly you can add whatever you want.  I'm dying to try a berry only one.  And a PB and J one. And maybe I might go completely nuts one night and throw in some Nutella.  Haven't gone there yet, though since I'm trying to keep them relatively healthy.

Oh a note on the sugar.  I've heard that you can use honey instead of the sugar if you're worried about your kid's sugar consumption.  My guy is too young still for honey, though.  Plus if you do the math they are basically getting less than 1/2 teaspoon of sugar per smoothie.  I'm not going to get my panties in a bunch about that small of an amount.  Especially when my attitude on sugar consumption in children is the same as alcohol consumption in college:  Learn how to do it in moderation in a somewhat consequence free situation so that later in life you don't get wasted at an office event and/or choose only cookies for your school lunch.


In other news tonight's plans involve friends, wine, and what the dude is holding:


Obviously this is the best idea ever and nothing can possibly go wrong.  Yup.

July 12, 2012

An Accidental Vacation: Part 2, The Aftermath.

So.  Part 1 is here.  But to recap we were somewhere in PA headed to our friends' house in DC the day after the Derecho.

Right.  So... a few frantic texts from dying phones later and we determine that our friends have no power, it's 104 out, and their power isn't coming back until Monday at the earliest. But.  We're finally in a car!  We're over halfway there!  We need some funtimes dammit!  So they make the sound decision that we should all meet somewhere with power and awesome things.

Except that they had dying cell phones and no power and we were in the Godforsaken (meaning no cell service) part of the state.

So we solved the problem that we actually had control over at the moment.  We got the kids some food.

Sommerset pa.

Somerset, PA

The Summit Diner was an adorable place that I highly recommend if you're ever in... Somerset Pennsylvania. 

Somerset, PA
You will probably never be in Somerset, PA.  But seriously this place was super cute.  The sign above the counter said "Drink Coffee.  Do stupid things faster with more energy!"  That I can get behind.

One of my Life Rules is to never go anywhere without an Atlas in the car.  So while we ate we called random places to stay near anything that looked remotely interesting on the map.
Somerset, PA
Seriously just get me some food.
And quickly learn that nowhere had power.  The entire Ohiopyle area was completely wiped out.  As was basically anything in Southeastern PA.

And still we refused to go home.  We were going to make a vacation happen dammit even without power and nowhere to stay.  So what do two architects do when stuck in the middle of nowhere PA without a plan?  They take their kids here, of course:


Recognize it yet?  How about this shot:

Aaaaaah yes. Fallingwater.  As we were pulling up Matt wondered if our kids would be allowed in.  I was all Of course they will be - I'm sure some hipster douchebags have brought their inappropriately aged children here before.  We can't be the first ones....   Yeah kids aren't allowed in.  You have to be at least 6 years old to tour the house.  Which, good.  I'm sure that rule exists because some idiot brought their kid and it was obnoxious.   Anyways you can bring your children and tour the grounds which was plenty:

Our girl is just as opinionated about architecture as she is about fashion.  She took one look at the house and said this:

"Why there isn't a train?  It has a moat.  It should have a train."

I feel like FLW really missed a design opportunity with that one....

Not pictured:  The train.
I love the details of this place.


The extensive preservation efforts that had been going on here seem to be pretty much completed.  I love that, btw.  Because no matter how modern and innovative and breaking with tradition your architecture is if it's any good?  Someday it will be in the hands of preservationists like me.

Anyways after a quick stop in the powerless and therefore pretty creepy visitor's center we texted our friends  "We're at Fallingwater.  Like you do." and hit the road headed south.  We figured we'd drive until we found power and/or met our friends in the middle.

What we found was this:

Deep Creek Lake

Deep Creek Lake.  A beautiful recreation area in the very western corner of Maryland.  We stopped at the visitor's center on the way in to try to get our bearings.  Matt asked for a recommendation on a place to stay.  The guy said "you realize it's the fourth of July weekend, right?"  And Matt's head exploded.  He wanted to say "You realize I've never heard of this place before an hour ago, my entire family was in a huge accident, we're a million miles from home, we have nowhere to go, we have two melting down kids in the car, and WE JUST NEED SOME FUNTIMES DAMMIT"  But.  Instead he said "Yeah."

We went immediately to the nearest beach:
Deep Creek Lake
FINALLY you people bring me somewhere fun.  The beach is my jam.
Met up with our friends and even found a motel with a vacancy.  Funtimes could finally begin. 

Deep Creek Lake

Stay tuned for Part III - when the trip really gets rolling...
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