Oct 31, 2009


I was having a hard time determing how to highlight the photos Kim Bee took of Nora (a couple months ago) and recalled a post Nealy did.



Steph's Pick - Pumpkin Cupcakes

Oct 30, 2009

I'm one of those weird people that doesn't like pumpkin pie (texture thing) but I LOVE pumpkin flavored treats in the fall. So I'm always on the lookout for new pumpkin desserts. With that said, you'll understand my excitement when I found this recipe in my Real Simple Sept magazine. Pumpkin Cupcakes with Cream Cheese Frosting = Delicious!!! And like everything - one of my favorite parts about this recipe is that it's sooooo easy. If you cheat like I did and just buy the cream cheese frosting (not saying I'd recommend it - it just makes it all that much easier) the recipe is a simple yellow cake mix recipe where you use pumpkin puree and pumpkin pie spice instead of water.

1 18.5-ounce box yellow cake mix (plus the ingredients called for in the package directions)
1/2 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
1 15-ounce can pumpkin puree
2 8-ounce bars cream cheese, at room temperature
2 cups confectioners’ sugar
24 pieces candy corn

Heat oven to 350° F. Line two 12-cup muffin tins with paper liners. Prepare the cake mix as directed but with the following change: Add the pumpkin pie spice and substitute the can of pumpkin puree for the water called for in the package directions.
Divide the batter among the prepared muffin tins and bake until a toothpick inserted into the center of a cupcake comes out clean, 18 to 22 minutes. Let cool.
Meanwhile, using an electric mixer, beat the cream cheese and sugar until creamy. Spread on the cupcakes and top each with a piece of candy corn.

For another great Fall Treat check out my
Butterscotch Pumpkin Bundt Cake - it's incredible.


♥ me some baby legs

Oct 28, 2009

Believe it or not it's actually a high of 64 degrees in Phoenix today! Finally - the beginning of BabyLegs season (aka cooler weather)!!! There is just something about cute little BabyLegs. Love me some BabyLegs... :)

On another note (well kindof) - we've been wondering if we're supposed to dress up a nearly 4 month old infant for Halloween. I've been thinking no; however, now that I see these
Hero BabyLegs I'm thinking a pair of these with a cute little super woman onesie might be worth it. We'll have to see...


Steph's Pick - DIY Mod Podge Letters

Oct 23, 2009

Before Nora (BN), I had seen dozens of nursery pictures with cute little letters. Now I knew I wanted to do something with her name, but I had a hard time deciding what. Here's what I did....

Wood Letters (can be found at any craft supply store)
Scrapbook Paper
Mod Podge
Paint Brush

How to:
- Trace letters onto scrapbook paper and cut out (Note: be sure to cut paper a little smaller than traced letter so it adheres well to the letter)
- Brush a layer of Mod Podge on the back of the scrapbook paper and adhere to letter
- Brush a layer of Mod Podge on front of paper (after attaching it to the letter) to give it a nice glossy look
- That's it - super easy, huh?

** Note, you can also do this with many other things. I've Mod Podged paper to a cheap ($1) wooden frame at Michaels. Use your imagination.


happy baby. happy weekend.

Oct 19, 2009

enough said.


Steph's Pick - Double Duty Decor

Oct 16, 2009

For all you Real Simple readers out there - Don't you just love the section they have on Double-Duty Household Items?! In this section of the magazine they show you different ways to use things you have around your home. For example one of the most recent issues highlighted using petroleum jelly on the inside of a nailpolish cap so it doesn't glue itself to the bottle. I think the ideas they come up with are super creative.
As I've said multiple times, I'm always looking for inexpensive ways to redecorate our place. One of the Double-Duty things that I have done is use what are supposed to be door mats for wall decoration. The above photo is a perfect example. I found this rubber door mat in one of the clearance sections in Target for $3 and have used it in multiple places throughout our home. Right now it sits on our fireplace mantle. What I love most about it (not to mention that it was cheap) is that at first glance you don't even think that it looks like a door mat. Most friends have said they just assumed it was an art piece :)
Do any of you have other double duty decor ideas?


just because

Oct 13, 2009

...it's too cute not to post...


Three Months

Oct 10, 2009

With Nora coming up on her three month birthday early next week, both Alan and I just can't believe how quickly the time has flown. Don't get me wrong - there have been very LONG days; however, as a whole the time has gone by so quickly. Although we don't have her stats for this month (those will come after her 4 month appointment) - I thought I'd highlight some of her happenings :)

3 months

Rolls from Back to Stomach
Recently found her tongue and loves to play with it
Drools a ton (hence the photo)
0-3 Month Clothes
Wears Size 1 Disposables (but mostly wears Bum Genius Cloth Diapers - one size fits all)
Still strongly dislikes her carseat
Smiles a lot
Loves to sit in the bumbo
Sleeps through the night (Yahoo!)
4 naps a day


Steph's Pick - Spinach Strawberry Salad

Oct 8, 2009

Nearly four and a half years ago I was married into a family of great cooks. And with its many privileges came this incredible salad recipe! I'm actually quite surprised that I haven't shared it yet on this blog. I thought for sure I had posted it - but nope (I checked)! So thanks Ardyce and Sara for expanding my salad recipe collection and adding this delectable recipe to it. (****please also see note at the end of this post)

Spinach Strawberry Salad
1 bag of romaine lettuce
1 bag of baby spinach
1 large container of sliced strawberries
1 1/2 cup (8-10 oz) toasted pecans
1 large package Monterey Jack Cheese

1/3 cup Raspberry Vinegar
1/2 cup sugar
1 tsp. Grey Poupon Mustard
1 tsp. Salt
1 1/2 Tbps. poppy seeds
1 cup olive oil

Whisk all dressing ingredients together except olive oil. Whisk olive oil in last and refrigerate.
Mix salad ingredients together and toss dressing in to taste.

**** On another note. Recently I've had a couple of readers/friends come "out of the woodwork" and tell me how much they enjoy our blog. Now here's the deal - I honestly think that I write these posts mostly for my own entertainment :) However, I realize there may actually be some people out there that enjoy the things I post about (even if you don't comment about it). So for those of you who regularly read The Flies Blend, I need your help! I'm curious what you like to read about..... recipes, crafts, Alan's Two Cents, Nora, product reviews, etc.???? So... I've created a poll on the sidebar (just to help me in coming up with more idea's). So vote now!


a HUGE thank you

Oct 7, 2009

We are so thankful for my parents traveling this past week to Vail with us to watch Nora (we were working most of the time while in Vail). Although they would quickly say that it was a fun vacation for them, I can guarantee had they not had Nora with them, their time in Vail would have looked very different!
So here's a HUGE thank you for changing lots of diapers, cleaning up lots of drool (that's right - our sweet little daughter already drools like the best of them), singing lots of lullabys, swaddling Nora a dozen or so times, going on miles of walks and for simply loving on your granddaughter! Love you...


Steph's Pick - Vail, CO

Oct 3, 2009

Cool crisp air.
Yellow leaves.
Our first get away with Nora.
The Arrabelle Resort.
Scarves and Jackets.
A perfect retreat.
Vail, Colorado.
Try it in the fall - it's GORGEOUS!

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