WORK'S OUT FOR SUMMER
You know what the next line is, but I won’t say it.
Some people have mid-life crises, I’ve apparently had a mom-life crisis. I honestly don’t know what I want to do with my life now that I’m a mom. I just knew that what I was doing pre-baby was not working post-baby. Then one day, one of my mom friends told me about the new Paid Family Leave program that started in New York State in January 2018. I assumed I wasn’t eligible since my son was born in September 2017, not realizing you could take the time if you’ve had a baby within 1 year. And whaddya know… I did! So I did.
Starting today I am home bonding with my son for 8 weeks. Too bad I had already signed him up for camp (ie, summer daycare. He's not going kayaking, he's a baby) since everything around here has to be done eons in advance. I should apparently take this time to start booking venues for his Bar Mitzvah too. Might only be half kidding about that. So we’ll be bonding after 3pm, and the rest of the time I’ll be bonding with the gym, the beach, binge watching Felicity, and finding new things that bring me joy… which these days apparently means #pinteresting.
Crafting queen, feel the heat from the glue-gun machine, oh yeaaaa
End of year teacher gifts
Even though my son is only 9 months old, these were his first “teachers,” so I wanted to show them how much I appreciated everything they did to help him (and me!) adjust to daycare. I found some really cute things you can make out of crayons, one of which looked a tad bit advanced for my pinteresting level, which right now is super-beginner. I’ll try that one next year. This year I went with these candy bowls instead. We also did a group gift card from the class, but who wouldn't want something homemade!?
Glass storage jars (remove the cover)
So, so easy. This glue gun is great. Lightweight, heats up fast, and doesn't leak. After starting off haphazardly sticking crayons on, I finally decided to apply the glue down the seam of the crayon so they'd all be facing the same direction and used the table to ensure they were straight(ish). Try to get them to fit tightly around and as you get to the end figure out how to position the last couple crayons so you don't end up with a blank space. I sometimes get excited and want to start crafting without thinking things through first, which usually ends badly.
I'm definitely not measure twice, cut once. More like looks good, let's cut, oopsies
I wanted to fill the bowls with something fun not just store-bought candy, so I made these pretzels that I also found on Pinterest. If you were wondering why I bought Christmas M&M’s in May, now you know. It was a genius plan until I realized that Pinterest said to use mini M&Ms but I obviously didn't pay attention, so I had to separate red and greens out and my husband enjoyed some full-size holiday chocolates instead. Just put a Hershey's kiss on each pretzel and put them in the oven for 4 minutes. Then apply the MINI M&M’s to look like an apple, set in the freezer, and voila! I also gave bags of these and gift cards to all the other caretakers that he saw during his 12-hour stints at daycare. They make a great school-office staff thank you as well!
This is a big year for my family. My husband turned 40 in May and our son will be turning 1 in September. That means 2 epic parties, 2 themes, and tons of treats! For my husband’s Boston-sports themed party, I enlisted the services of my insanely talented friend Sarah to make the centerpiece of the dessert table, this gorgeous cake! After some searching on Pinterest, I sent her an idea of what I wanted and she nailed it. More on her and a behind-the-scenes of her deliciousness coming when we collaborate on Nathan’s cake at the end of the summer!
I mean, the teams=yuck, but the design=amazing. (Go Yankees)
Because she had that handled, I was freed up to focus on additional treats (not that we needed them since my husband and I ate cake leftovers every night for 3 weeks.) But I wanted to contribute, practice my skills, and gather feedback for planning Nathan’s party. (I also made those cupcakes.)
With the melting pot, this stuff was a breeze! Although you can also melt the chocolate in the microwave if you don’t want to buy additional apparatuses. Just make sure you’re always using the candy melts not chocolate chips or bars. The lollipops and the rice krispie treats were huge hits and will definitely be deployed for Nathan’s party. Almost everything I needed was available at Amazon Prime, Target, or Party City. Melt. Dip or mold. Freeze to harden. Go! Display on these inexpensive trays from Party City, or in mason jars or small glass vases.
Along with creating all the stuff for Nathan’s upcoming party: treats, decorations, favors, etc., next I’m going to try making bracelets. I used to make these all the time when I was younger. In fact one of them is around the neck of my childhood stuffed animal and it's really held up! If that doesn't say quality I don't know what does. Get your orders in for camp visiting days people. It's gonna be a fun summer...