The Crafty Mom

I have to be honest with you.

I titled this blahg post "The Crafty Mom" briefly before I daydreamed for about 15 minutes about how the InterWebz might get ahold of this fabulous tutorial I am about to show you, and that I would need a really cute logo for the media.

This is literally what I thought of:

Anyways, back to why we're here.

My child is turning four years old (don't ask me about it - I'm still in denial) on Thursday. His birthday party is on Saturday. All of his friends are coming. This is his first "traditional" birthday party. For his first, we celebrated with close family. For his second, we were on a road trip. For his third, I stepped aside and let my mom do all the planning. It was a shared party with his second cousin and his great grandma. A wonderful party - but definitely not "traditional."

This year, we are doing it old school. Like I remember. The way my birthday party probably went when I turned four years old. There will be an over-sized mouse singing songs. There will be pizza. And tokens. And games. And balloons. And rides. And an amaze-balls superhero cake that Danielle is making for him.

And these:

Homemade super hero capes.

(By the way, ladies, this is where I mention that if you ever thought 'Oh, I don't care if my husband gets that tattoo,' then you probably weren't thinking about the day when your four year old son wanted the back of his cape to look like "Daddy's skull and bones.")

These literally took me all of $5 minutes to make, each.

I made 10. 

Which means I made 10 homemade super hero capes in less than the time it takes to get a manicure.

So here's how it's done.

1. Go to Wal*Mart or Target or Meijer or Good Will. Whatever suits your fancy.

2. Buy (insert your number here) men's t-shirts, size small.

3. Take them home and cut them out, straight down the back and around the neck, like this:

4. Then, after you recover from the original shock of how fucking expensive they were, take the decals out of the bag.

5. Iron the shirt to warm it up a bit.

6. Place the decal over the shirt, sticky side down. Press firmly with your hands.

7. Then, turn the shirt over and iron over the decal for a good 25 seconds or so (your iron's setting should be on "Cotton").

8. Once you're done with the iron, peel the plastic off the decal. 

9. Voila! You're a total bad ass.

Oh, and in case you're wondering why there is no four-year-old model to show the viewing audience how amazingly cute these are, all I have to say is you need to try giving a super hero cape to a little boy four days before his birthday "just to take a picture," but then tell him he can't have it back until Saturday.

Good luck with that one.

Oh! And if, for some crazy reason, your four year old little girl isn't into skull and crossbones, then maybe you can make her a cute super hero cape with butterflies!?

(In reality, they only had 7 skull decals in the store. Originally, even the girls were going to get the skulls. Lol.)

Alright, so that concludes this episode of The Craz(ft)y Mom. Tune in next week as we consider the proper way to address our husbands when they come home from a long, hard day at work.

Stop being a pansy.

I don't understand the concept of preserving a wedding dress. I mean, I DO, but I don't. When was the last time you looked at it, if you had it preserved? Because I can tell you, if you would just take it out of the damn box, put it on, and call a photographer, you won't have any regrets.

Well. Unless you call a really shitty photographer. Then you might.

But that's not the point. The point is that there would be nothing cooler than a canvas of yourself in your home, wearing your wedding dress in a completely non-traditional setting.

Am I right?

(Hint: yes).

Road trip | Yellowstone

So my mom and I decided that we wanted to needed to go to Yellowstone at the end of the summer with our cameras. It sounds like there was a lot of planning involved, but in reality, we threw the entire trip together in one week.

So, after my time with Tom, I flew out to Colorado to meet up with them. Thad and I were there for one full day with my Uncle DeWight as well, so that was nice. We decided it would be the perfect time to hang out all day at the house, and then have a nice dinner at a farm in Denver to celebrate Thad's 4th birthday and my grandma's 81st birthday.

 (The most perfect Denver Broncos sunset over the Rockies).

(Hanging out with Uncle D and my dad. They let Thad drive one of their remote control motorcycles which meant that he was, of course, in Heaven).

(When hanging out with the guys got a little boring, I walked around my parents' property and took photos of my mom's flowers. My mom has such an incredibly green thumb, and I can't even keep carnations alive. It's amazing).

 (This is the face Thad makes for anything exciting. Thad, would you like one million dollars? (see picture above).  Thad, would you like to live at Disneyland? (see picture above).  Thad, would you like to eat bacon and skittles for every single meal for a lifetime? (see picture above).

In this photo, they were singing happy birthday to him and my grandma Birdie.

 (This picture, in general, actually improves my life every single time I look at it).

(Thad on the tractor. Another slice of Heaven).

The next day, we packed the car and headed Northwest toward the Grand Tetons.

 (Fire in Wyoming, just East of the Grand Tetons).

Our hotel was literally 50 miles outside of Yellowstone, so by the time we hit the park, it was pretty late. We ended up sleeping in the next morning until around 10, so our first day got a bit of a late start.

It was a good thing, though, since our very first experience in the park occurred about 9 miles in - when we encountered a heard of elk, including a pregnant mother. We could literally see the baby kicking inside of her and were even convinced at one point that she was about to deliver. She never did, but it was still a pretty incredible experience. For the rest of the day, Thaddeus wanted to know allll about the time when HE was in MY belly, and how he would kick me.

Boys. ;)

 (Jumping off rocks).

 (Gibbon Springs).

 (By the end of the first day, we saw our first wild bear. It was down in a field, and my longest focal length, stupidly, was 85mm. So this was as "close" as I could get. But no worries....I make up for it later).

Oh, and this was also the point when my mom literally got so excited that she saw a bear, that she jumped out of the car, left it running, and ran out there for photos. Unless, of course, you are my dad reading this blahg entry - in that case, pretend you never read that.

(Day Two was waterfalls).

 (Day Two was picnics by the river).

 (Day Two was learning how to skip rocks with grandma).

 (Day Two was wild buffalo, lying on the road).

 (Day Two was Old Faithful at sunset).

(Day three was one of the most amazing days of the trip. We started off by seeing grizzly bears and wolves. After that experience, we figured we were done for the day - we should just leave now, on a good note. So we did. And we spent the rest of the day shopping, enjoying the local fare, and swimming in the pool).
Oh, and by the way, while there isn't any proof on camera, let me be the first to brag that I convinced my child to go down a 90 degree water slide with 3 turns. I have to buy him two big monster trucks now, but whatever.

The point is he did it. ;)

Photo by Laura Smith:

 (Our final day in the park, we came up on some people on the side of the road. They were pulled over to look at one single buffalo, about 400 miles in the distance. My mom and I laughed about how lame that seemed, since we had spent so many years living in a town with its own heard of buffalo).

As we carried on in our laughter, we stumbled upon the other 4,592,018,975 buffalo in the herd. It was amazing. They were everywhere. The side of the road. The fields. The water. IN FRONT OF OUR CAR. We went from being high school mean girls to giddy 12-year-olds at a Boyz II Men concert. It was fascinating!

 (On our way down to Jackson Hole, WY. We stopped here shortly after seeing a wild black bear. If you look at the bottom left of this photo, you can see a grey cloud - the same fire from the photo above, now 4 days later).

(Photo by Laura Smith):
 (When we finally got home, after having put 2,000 miles + on my parents' car, we were back to more of the same - relaxing, playing with the remote control monster truck Uncle D gave Thad, and taking photos of flowers).

I had such an amazing time with my mom while we were there. It was wonderful being with just my mom, and just my son. Experiences like this are the things we dream of as we become mothers. I love the bond that the 3 of us share.