31 January 2013

Cora's First Birthday Party

We celebrated my little one's first birthday this past weekend. I was originally going to write a long rambling post with details, but you can glean most of it from the pictures. So I'll save my breath.

Birthday Morning
Testing out the wagon we got her, in our apartment (to cold and snowy outside). She loves it.

We had to borrow a relative's house because of our tiny apartment.


Monthly elephant photos hanging up (6 facing one side, 6 on the other)

Party Game
Trivia about Cora's First Year
My mother-in-law won.


Oh yesss I did!
[Cut the grapes in half, and if it's a long name just do a big 1]

For baby
For everyone
 (Yes, I made both of them.)

Guest of honor
She took the tiara off less than 2 seconds later.
Homemade tutu, by the way.

Singing and smashing

She's a fan.

Not sure what to call this

The Best Helper
My mom loves her granddaughter! I'm so glad she was able to be here.
Video for a short attention span

Video for a long attention span (singing/eating cake)

29 January 2013

Shop My Closet

Linking up with Fine Linen and Purple's women's clothing sale. If my sizes don't fit you, go check out the other ladies selling to see their wares.
All prices include shipping to the continental US through USPS. I will happily ship elsewhere, but the price will go up accordingly and we can work that out. Also if you would like tracking or delivery confirmation, we can work that out as well.

I accept payment through Amazon Payments or PayPal (your choice) and will give you the details when the sale is made. Please email me at catherineann61 AT yahoo DOT com if you are interested in an item. Feel free to ask questions on specifics as well--I'll happily model the item for you and give you my measurements if you're on the fence. This will be first-come first-serve, and I will try to update this page as quickly as possible after a sale. Prices are negotiable, so feel free to haggle (especially if you're buying more than one item). Happy shopping!

Black and white button-up shirt, In Charge brand (not sure what store, I've had it since college).
Tag says size M, but it's definitely a S, and probably not a busty S.

Green sweater from Old Navy, size XS.

Actual vintage corduroy jacket that my mother wore in the 70's. Tag says size 12, but fits more like a S or M.
but it needs to go to the cleaners first (it has something on the collar).
If you want to clean it on your own, it's $15.
detail on the jacket--it has 2 buttons (you can only see one in the pic above)
I'm a pretty classic S, and this is how the jacket fits me.
Might fit a M as well.

Xhiliration jacket, size M

Charcoal Old Navy peacoat, size M
detail of the Old Navy coat to show it's not exactly black (it's a bit darker than this though)

FOR TRADE ONLYBlack Cherokee cardigan, size M.
Looking for another black (or gray) cardigan in size S for even trade.
I still wear this around the house, but it is too big.

White Jones New York suit, size 4.
Willing to sell each piece for $13 if you only want half.

Size 7 Nine West shoes, worn less than 5 times
Thanks for browsing my sale!

27 January 2013

What I Wore Sunday (Vol. 10)

I finally got to go back to morning mass. We couldn't go last night because of baby's birthday party. My mom was flying back to Atlanta tonight, so we went this morning. And since B is working today, he gets to suffer through enjoy the teeny-bopper mass tonight on his own.

The baby did SO. MUCH. BETTER. at this mass than she has done in a long time. I really think it's the timing (and possibly having a Grandma there who wants to hold her the whole time). I give her behavior an A. We didn't have to take her out to the narthex during the Liturgy of Eucharist like B usually does. My mom keeps saying I need to look into using the nursery, since my sister swears by it. My mom also took my picture this week and told me to try a different pose because I looked dorky.

So here's the non-dorky pose:
The blazer is back!
Actually, I added the blazer at the last second because the whole outfit just washed neutral without it.

Blazer: NY & Co. // Shirt: Express via Goodwill // Pants: Old Navy // Boots: Bare Traps
Underthings to keep me warm: fleece-lined leggings from Target

And little Cora looked super-cute today as well:
Such a good model
In the spirit of my thrifted shirt this week, and the fact that I know most of the WIWS bunch love them some Goodwill deals, here is a kid-friendly a cappella version of the song "Thrift Shop" as done by Pentatonix:

If you would like to see/hear the original NSFL version with hilarious video by Macklemore & Ryan Lewis, click this link.

Linking up with the lovelies today at Fine Linen and Purple

26 January 2013

Cora's First Year

Today is my baby's first birthday!

We're having a fun party later today, and it's all adults (except the cake-smashing guest of honor), so the wine will be a-flowing. Oh, and my mommy even flew in for the occasion! (That's quite the sacrifice since she left the warm bosom of Georgia to come freeze her butt off up here in the snow. Maybe next year we can bring the party down South.)

So how about looking at all of our monthly pics from the past year? The great thing about having a baby in January is that the timeline of their first year almost coincides with the calendar.

Cora's first picture, taken less than 20 minutes after she was born
The day she got her elephant
(It's obvious I'm no professional photographer, as the lighting is ridiculously different in each of those pictures. And can you tell what month we moved?)

And of course I have to add in her 12-month picture. From this morning:

So there ya go, a year in the life, 13 pictures, and one happy one-year-old!
Even though there's an extra picture, I'm linking this up with House Unseen's 12 in '12 link-up!

If you're in the mood for more on Cora, check out her birth story here.

23 January 2013

My Own Catholic Bucket List

A blogger I love posted her own Catholic Bucket List over here last week. Go check it out. I'll wait.

I have actually done a lot of those! But most of them happened on my study abroad trip to Italy back in 2004. In fact, a few of them all happened in the same day. It was the day I struck out on my own one weekend to give a visit to my confirmation saint, St. Dominic. His basilica and final resting place is in Bologna (say it with me: buh-LONE-yuh), which I thought would be an easy trip from Verona, where I was studying.

I ended up on a 3-hour tour with a monk who spoke choppy English, but was so happy to be practicing it. I got shown relics and the entire grounds. I had planned to attend vigil mass there that night, and while on the tour, the brother invited me to it . . . as it was a rather large ordination mass. He even invited me to some sort of celebration dinner, but I politely declined. I went to the mass, but not the dinner. In hindsight, I probably should have, as I ended up choking on prosciutto and then sleeping outside a train station that night. Oh, did I mention I was by myself? Yeah, not my best night. But I did make it to Pisa the next day to climb that leaning tower.

Anyway, Kathryn's list is very travel-heavy, and rather expensive to complete. I actually consider it more of a "dream sheet" for many people. Since "catholic" means "universal," I decided to respond with my own Catholic Bucket List in which most of the activities easily done wherever you are. Many of these would be good for a recent convert or a cradle Catholic who is just coming to really love her faith. Only the last 5 involve traveling. I've done some of these, and others I hope to do soon!
  1. Attend a mass in a language you don't understand. 
  2. "Crash" a wedding mass of complete strangers. It's not really crashing, since sacraments of initiation (and all masses) are open to the public!
  3. Attend an ordination. Bonus points if it's a bishop's instillation!
  4. Take communion on your tongue. Or on your knees. Or try to take the cup with a baby on your hip. (I still have not attempted that one.)
  5. Bring up the gifts at Offertory.
  6. Go to Easter Vigil and welcome the new Catholics into the Church afterward.
  7. Visit a convent or monastery.
  8. Read the entire Bible. Yeah, that includes Tobit!
  9. Invite your priest over for dinner.
  10. Attend an outdoor Via Crucis/Living Stations of the Cross on Good Friday.
  11. Pray a rosary on a beautiful night under the stars.
  12. Attend a Tridentine mass. Stumble through the Latin if you must.
  13. Go on a weekend retreat as an adult. And/or a mission trip.
  14. Pray at a Marian grotto.
  15. Go on a Holy Thursday pilgrimage in your town: travel to and practice Eucharistic adoration at seven different churches after Mass on Holy Thursday.
  16. Participate in the March for Life in Washington, D.C.--or your hometown. (Hopefully one of these days I can take this off the list, as it won't be necessary any more. Just maybe.) 
  17. Visit the Vatican, and make sure to see the Sistine Chapel. And climb to the top of the cupola! Marvel at the Pietà and rub St. Peter's toe. Oh, and check out one of the little adoration side chapels and say hello to Jesus.
  18. Climb the Scala Santa on your knees, praying on each step.
  19. See the Pope in person.
  20. Visit the Holy Land with a priest-led group.
(I'll confess--I stole borrowed some of these from this Chicago-centric list.)

What would you add to your own Catholic Bucket List? And what is on your Catholic dream sheet?

20 January 2013

What I Wore Sunday (Vol. Black and Brown)

Everywhere else I've lived, I have church-shopped to pick a parish home. I thought I would be doing that here. I have now been to a whopping 3 churches in this town over the 3 months we have lived here. We keep going back to that first one. It's mostly because of B's ridiculous schedule, as I would have never picked the Saturday vigil as a first-choice mass. But after another great homily from the priest I like the best, I realized something: We (I?) didn't pick this church, but I think it just picked us. We haven't officially joined yet, though, since they only do that after the 9am mass on the third Sunday of the month following a lunar eclipse and a sighting of the Loch Ness Monster. Or something.

Alright, on to the ol' up-and-down. I think this is one of the first times I've worn black and brown together, but I think I pulled it off.

Did anyone else check out Target this past week? Tons of stuff on 70% off clearance! I got a lot of basics, 2 of which I am sporting here.

Cardigan: Mossimo from Target // Striped shirt: Merona from Target // 'Skirt' that's actually a maternity dress: Liz Lange from Target // Boots: Solanz from Shoe Carnival

Yes, you read that correctly. The 'skirt' I'm wearing is really a maternity dress. I had wanted to winter-fy a dress to see if I could, and today was the perfect day.  Here is a picture of me at 24 weeks preggers back in October 2011 sporting this dress (and barefoot and in the kitchen, per a friend's request):
I added the scarf/sash. It's just a black dress.
This dress also looked good enough to wear even after all the baby weight was gone. I found one of me from a trip to Houston last June:

This is just my kinda outfit! Looks good when pregnant, looks good when not pregnant, easy to nurse in, doesn't need ironing, and great for ridiculously hot weather. (It was 100° and I was determined to sight-see--my hair, on the other hand, was not so pleased with that decision.) Oh, I also bought it for less than $3 from the--you guessed it--Target clearance rack. Sure hope there's one of those in heaven.

Bonus: I heard you people like outtakes. And as I actually convinced my husband to take the pictures this week (after mass, dinner, and baby's bedtime), there were definitely some outtakes:
Okay yes, I almost did use that one on the left as my main picture this week, so I'm not sure if it qualifies. My husband had just said that my clothes were all too big for me, and I was rather offended.
I'm sure you can tell by my expression.
Link up your Sunday best at Fine Linen and Purple