Michelle Smiles

Teaching my children to question authority, except mine.

Props for color coordination


I usually watch Dora with Sabrina but today I turned it on and left the room.  I returned to find this:


I have no idea where she found Tessa’s winter hat or why she decided to wear it but she kept it on all day.  (It was 75 degrees here today.)

As for why I left her to watch alone, am I the last one to hear about Blip?  I had a ball with it today.  It is free.  You just sign up and start picking songs – as many as you want.  You build your own “station” with your playlist.  You listen to it all from your computer.  I might be the last person in the free world who doesn’t have an ipod/MP3 player so I’ve never compiled my own play list before and had a ball picking out songs.  The girls and I spent the rest of the day dancing around the kitchen to my schizophrenic eclectic assortment of songs.

Three things that made me smile today


Aside from my darling children, of course.  I had a bitchin’ headache all day today.

First, I found this when I went into the powder room:


Second, I treated myself to these at Trader Joe’s yesterday and flowers always make me happy:


Third, we all received a certificate for a pair of crocs at Blissdom ’09 this year.  I have to say, I’m impressed that they are both comfy and somewhat stylish and still waterproof (I was wearing them in the rain to get the mail – please to ignore my lovely green sweat pants):


That is all. Please return to what you were doing.

posted under Misc. | 9 Comments »

Confirming mommy blogger status


dsc09576Miss Tessa saw the doctor today.  She gained 1lb 9oz in the 4 weeks since we were last there.  She regained her 5th%tile status for weight and is up to the 6th%tile for height.  (And her head is huge in comparison.  She can thank her daddy for that.)  Because she is at the same place on the growth curve that she was at 6 months, the doctor has declared her “perfect” and “absolutely beautiful” (I am sure he says that to all of the babies but this time he was correct) and we don’t have to return until she is a year old.  She is 9 months old tomorrow – how did that happen?  And this dress is one that Sabrina wore.  I can’t find a photo of her in it – it is in the nether regions of a back up drive somewhere.  But it is sweet to see her wearing Sabrina’s things. (I think all of us who were adopting at that time had at least 1 piece from this line of Carter’s with yellow duckies.)

dsc09581Sabrina is doing well with potty training but she is working the system so we have to switch things up.  The girl keeps us on our toes.  She gets a sticker when she pees and a treat (candy) when she poops on the big girl potty.  Without getting too graphic, let’s just say the child has managed to receive up to 5 pieces of candy a day.  (Pre-potty training she only had to go once or twice a day.)   And she is losing interest in the stickers so that part of it isn’t going as well as it was.  You have to give her props for working the system so well.  But we are moving on to a treat if her pull up is still dry/clean before nap time and another one before bed time.  If the rest of the week goes well, this weekend we will break out the big girl panties.

posted under family | 11 Comments »

Ice cream winner


I just pulled the winning comment with the random number generator: Nora of Tycast Team gets some Haagen-Dazs!

Thanks for all of your camera input.  The ultimate deal breaker for us is a lithium battery.  We don’t want to mess around with AAs.  Strangely, that took a good number of cameras out of the running. The 2 that I like best are that fit our ideas of what we want (Click photos for amazon listing)

The Canon PowerShot SD 1100IS (the less expensive option)


And my real favorite Panasonic Lumix DMC-TZ5A


Steve hasn’t added his 2 cents worth yet so he might not be on board with either.  And because our microwave caught fire and our weed wacker disintergrated this week, the camera may not be the first thing on the list to be replaced.

posted under Misc. | 5 Comments »

Haagen Dazs Friday


I have another certificate for a free pint of Haagen Dazs ice cream (or package of ice cream bars).  It is a gorgeous 86 degrees here in Nashville today – perfect for a little ice cream.

To enter, tell me what 1 feature (or more if you have more) you look for in a point and shoot camera. Tessa managed to get her fingers around the strap of ours and fling it to the ceramic tile floor. It still takes photos but the LCD screen doesn’t work (there is no view finder) and you can’t change the settings because it has had touch screen menus and controls.  I did take these with it (and the stupid front door post was a result of my testing my theory that the camera would work as long as I took a bunch of photos since I was doing so blindly).


Sabrina has developed this weird pirate smile whenever I turn the camera on her.  She scrunches up one side of her face and I expect her to say “Argh!”


I drool over SLR cameras and some day will have one…but for now, I just need another point and shoot that I can throw in my pocket.  I really loved our Sony Cybershot (may it rest in peace).  Tell me a feature you love or wish your camera had for a chance to win the ice cream certificate.  I will close comments at noon central time on Monday April 27th. And draw a winner later that day.

posted under food | 28 Comments »

Cookie! Stat!


ickI am repulsed by this girl’s body.  I want to force feed her a sandwich.  This isn’t beauty – this is a disorder.  She is reminiscent of a Holocaust victim.

This Australian model was a contestant in the Miss Universe pageant.  The story is here.

It makes me sad that we do this to girls in our society.  I so hope that I can instill a healthy body image in my girls as they grow up (note to self: work on your own).

posted under Misc. | 14 Comments »



dsc09538How hard does a bird have to work to poop on our front door which is recessed in its frame and under a roof?  I have to admit, it feels a little personal.

Perhaps it was a commentary on my wreath (purchased on super clearance many years ago) which really needs to be replaced with something less dead dreary looking?

posted under Misc. | 18 Comments »

Little piece of home


dsc09517We had a pleasant surprise this weekend – Steve’s brother, his wife, and our 4 yr old niece and nephew were in town.  We enjoyed hanging out with them.  Sabrina was over the moon playing with her cousins – she now thinks hide and seek is the most brillant game ever devised and is sure they invented it.  Iveta and I proved that you don’t need to be part of the bloodline to kick ass in 500.  And the kids reminded me that my cooking isn’t all that with the 4 year old crowd.

dsc09531Yesterday, I accompanied my BIL and his family to a small town that I’ve heard a lot about.  I’ve been meaning to visit it for awhile.  I was rather disappointed. There wasn’t much to see or do on a Monday afternoon.  But it is very quaint (by design to a certain degree). This general store did make some might fine pulled pork.


Sabrina is quite sad this morning to discover her cousins are gone.

Tessa actually let Aunt Iveta hold her for 20 minutes (she isn’t a big fan of anyone who isn’t a designated bottle getter right now).



posted under family | 8 Comments »

Haagen Dazs Monday


According to the random number generator, Krista won this weeks certificate for free ice cream!  Congrats Krista – I’ve sent you an email for your snail mail address.

I’ll put up another post to win another certificate this Friday.

posted under food | 1 Comment »

Haagen-Dazs (and a give away)


I’ve mentioned hundreds of times once or twice my love of ice cream.  I love ice cream in all forms: soft serve, hand dipped, in a sundae, on a stick, in a cone, as a milkshake.  So when a product review opportunity from Mom Central arrived in my inbox for Häagen-Dazs, I wiped the drool off my chin and hit respond pretty darn quick.

Häagen-Dazs has a new line.  And they sent me 4 (four! all for me!) pints to try.


The new Häagen-Dazs line is Five.  They call it ice cream unplugged.  It boasts only 5 all natural ingredients in each flavor: milk, cream, sugar, eggs, and the flavor ingredient so the natural flavors shine through.  They sent me mint, brown sugar, ginger, and passion fruit.

Mint: very creamy, the perfect amount of mint (didn’t feel like i was eating toothpaste which some overpowering mint flavors can).  Quite yummy and refreshing.

Brown sugar: again quite creamy.  It tasted like cookie dough before you put the chocolate chips in – big YUM.  The sweet factor was pretty high on this one as you can imagine so it meant I didn’t have to eat much to be very satisfied.

Ginger: The ice cream itself was creamy and tasted like fresh ginger.  I’m not a big fan of ginger so it wasn’t my cup of tea.

Passion fruit: creamy and so fruity!  The fruit flavor was so fresh it was surprising.  Very refreshing – a great ending to a spicy meal.

It also comes in coffee, chocolate, and vanilla bean.

As a thank you for reviewing the product (like the ice cream wasn’t thanks enough), they sent me a few certificates for a free pint of any Häagen-Dazs ice cream or a package of Häagen-Dazs bars.   And because I love you all, I’m going to share.  I must love you all because I don’t share ice cream.  Ask my husband.  Or my children.

For the next few weeks, I’m going to do a give away each Friday. You can win a certificate good for a free pint of any Häagen-Dazs ice cream or a package of Häagen-Dazs bars. You can try one of the new Haagen-Dazs Five flavors or an old favorite.  Your choice.

To enter this week’s give away, visit the Haagen-Dazs site and tell me what you think of the new Häagen-Dazs Five line of ice cream.  Does it appeal to you?  I will draw a random winner at 1pm CT on Monday April 20th.  Leave a valid email address so I can contact you if you are the winner.

dsc09439And thanks Haagen-Dazs for packaging it in dry ice.  I had fun melting it down.

posted under food | 33 Comments »
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