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Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Isis' Style

The right blazer can tie everything together!

Pants: Forever 21
Blouse, jacket and belt: Express
Shoes: BCBG
Watch: Fossil

She topped off the look with a sophisticated donut bun. Click here to learn how.

P.S. - For us shorter-haired ladies, check out TONS of tutorials from Kate at The Small Things Blog!

Saturday, May 24, 2014

The New Project: Bella's Kindness!

Sometimes it takes a special person to remind us of everything we already know we should do but aren't practicing - or just aren't focusing on.

Enter my amazing cousin Bella, who sees the world through kind eyes that most 13 year-olds will shut during those tough years when conformity and peer acceptance often mean more than what you learned at church or from your parents.

Bella doesn't flinch when someone says something mean to her; she brushes it off. And she doesn't hesitate to go out of her way if it means someone else won't be bullied.

Here is her 13th birthday wish:

In a nutshell, she asked everyone who came to her 13th birthday party to pay it forward by doing three kind things each day. She even, at 13, understands the motivation that comes with setting a goal: If she and her mom do 50 kind things combined, they will have a girls' day together.

There is so much to be grateful for - it's all a matter of how we interpret it (Example: Oh, great, the dog is licking my son's milk cup. OR... Wow. My one and a half year-old is so generous, he loves to share with his dog!)

It's just very easy to forget! Climb on board and try to do three kind things each day for someone else. I know Bella would really appreciate it if you sent her an email about it at

Thanks for your support, and let's be kind together!

xoxo Petrea

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

My #100HappyDays Finale!

I couldn't close out the 100 Happy Days Project without an update, so here it is. After 100 crazy, wonderful, happy days, I am finally finished. My social media obligation is over! ...And I have to admit, I have mixed feelings about it. There were nights I had to scramble to find a picture - Shoot! My Hundred Happy Days! My cute kid is already asleep! What will I take a picture of? And a few times I had to find something small to be happy about when I didn't feel particularly happy.

Now that it's over I have the constant urge to snap a picture of a special moment, big or small. I'm sure my friends, family and colleagues appreciate not having a camera shoved in their faces every time I recognize a "moment." But even my husband - who inspired me to put down the smart phone in exchange for family time - suggested that I can always take on the challenge again, whenever I want.

I don't have to take pictures anymore - I'm just more attuned to capturing those moments, because human memory (especially Working Mommy Memory) is fleeting.


I bought these Sesame Street slippers because I thought my son would like them (and he does: he points to them and tries to say "Toes!"). Who knew they would be the most comfortable thing to wear around the house and even to bed? I love comfort!


It isn't every day I get to come home to this! (In our current, "We don't hit people/ourselves/random animals" phase, hugs are very appreciated.)


Grammy and Pops doting on Johnny even while he's asleep!

Busy day! Registered Johnny for child care, worked until 8pm, and Matt's parents flew into town for his graduation ceremony. They live in Indiana and haven't seen their newest grandson since he was two weeks old. It was quite a moment.


Did anyone else know that one year-olds don't pose well for pictures? Here is one attempt to capture the three of us in our matching shirts from Grammy and Pops.


Graduation day! After lots of hard work and what felt like a decade (!) the whole family watched Matt's graduation ceremony.


Our families got together to celebrate the milestone. We could never have done it without their support!


Pops bought Johnny a new kite after ours got stuck in a tree.

Last day. After a whirlwind visit filled with activities and fun, the 100 happy days ended like this. A kite in the sky on a windy day. I feel calm, grateful, and yes - happy. #100happydays

It's never too late to join the challenge! Sign up here. Just remember...


P.S. - Learn how I overcame my smart phone addiction.

Monday, March 31, 2014

Weekend Roundup: This Week's Happy Days

Here's my latest 100 Happy Days in review!

We finally bought our little guy his OWN toothbrush - so he can stop pretending to use mine (and, occasionally, carefully placing my husband's on the dirtiest section of the bathroom floor).

Johnny clearly doesn't think I'm using enough toothpaste.
This is what happens when my husband is in charge of filling out childcare paperwork.

Other gems include:
Q: What would you most like your child to get out of this experience?
A: Care.
Q: What would you like us to know about your child?
A: He's a cool little dude.

Said husband had his last official day of school, ending with a 4.0 GPA and a job he already started!

What does no more night school for him mean for me? Among other things, delicious grilled dinners together again after a long nine months!

What does it mean for our family? All three of us TOGETHER after work! No more evenings spent missing Dad!

I've only ever received performance awards at my job, but this one meant more to me than all of them combined.

Whenever our dog comes around, Johnny imitates his panting ("huh, huh, huh"). Now, when he turns to the animals page in his flap-book, he pants at the dog picture. It's amazing to watch him put things together in his growing little mind!

Bonus: He spent the day with his dad at the pool - hence the chlorine-enhanced hairstyle and shirtless attire.

Finally got some cleaning and organizing done around the house. It's amazing how difficult this becomes when your 1 year-old would love to help by taking everything out and leaving it scattered around the floor for you to trip over.

Want to feel happier? It's never too late to join the challenge! If you don't believe it, check out my #100happydays and prove that if this busy working mom with a dog, a cat, a husband and a 1 year-old can do it, you can too!*

*Seriously, though, why did we get a puppy when I was 8 months pregnant? Feel free to question my logic there...

Sunday, March 30, 2014

Better Than a Flat-Iron

Got cowlicks? Live in a humid environment? I've been there. Don't waste your time (or the health of your hair) straightening with heat! Give your straightener a break and try Osis Slick Flattening Liquid for flat locks that behave the way you style them.

No kidding ladies: It was recommended to me by a hairstylist years ago and it works. Smooth it over problem areas or rake it all the way through. I use a round brush to achieve the desired effect.

Happy styling!


Buy it here or check out more hair care tips.