Friday, August 29, 2008

Poor Parker...

Well, I think it is safe to say that Phillip and I had the hardest night with Parker since we left the hospital when he was born. The poor little guy woke up 6 times, crying his eyes out. I think his poor teeth were REALLY hurting him. It is so frustrating when you do everything you can think of for them and yet, you don't really know if it is helping them. I am worried that he won't be able to handle today's road trip well. The whole family (dogs included), is driving to the Upper Peninsula (Minnesotans call it the UP). Some friends of our have a cabin right on the lake. I hope Parker will be OK.

Next week, I will have pictures from this trip as well as the State Fair. Sorry for the light posts this week, but I was swamped trying to get ready to go out of town.

Hope you all have a safe and fun Labor Day weekend. Talk to you on Tuesday!

Love, Brandie

Thursday, August 28, 2008

Deep Fried Oreos

(Photograph by Matthew Klein)
I am sure that ALL of you are just dying to know about the deep fried Oreo cookies at the State Fair. I almost left the fair without trying them. We were at the fair for 5 hours and I could not find the booth that sold these yummy treats. Then low and behold, on our way out, I saw it. I heard the angels singing while the heavens cast a spot light on this booth that made magical, sweet treats. I waited in line with great anticipation, my mouth salivating at the prospect of these wonderful Oreo cookies. I finally placed my order, waited for them to be made fresh, and took my first highly anticipated bite. (Great pause) YUCK! I could barely get one down. I wasted my calorie count on that?!? What was I thinking?!? DEEP FRIED OREOS!?! That just does not sound good. I should have saved the calories for the scrumptious hush puppies I saw around the corner...

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Video Wednesday

With all of the hype surrounding Robert Downey Jr lately, I thought I would remind everyone that some of his best work is right here in this video. The fact that the video is in one continuous take is amazing to me. Also, consider that the gorgeous building he is in is very "institutional"...fitting considering what he was going through at that time in his life (and fits the song perfectly). Forget all of the stupid "bling, bling" videos...this one will be a classic and is timeless. Sometimes simple is just best. I for one am so happy that RDJ is finally on top and happy. He looks like he will be there for a while!

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

We're Going to the State Fair!

Besides the weather, one of the things I hear the locals talking about A LOT here is the state fair. Apparently, it takes 3 whole days to see this huge event. Phillip, Parker and I are going to do it in a short afternoon (truth be told, it is probably all Parker could handle). I am so excited to check it out. I haven't been to a state fair since I was a little girl. The one thing I am particularly excited about is trying the deep fried Oreo cookies I have heard so much about.

I will have lots of pictures and stories to share with you about it later this week.

Have a great day!


Monday, August 25, 2008

What's In My Neighborhood

Now that Parker is a bit older, we are finally beginning to explore our new home here in Minneapolis, MN. Most of our friends and family live on the West Coast, so I thought it would be fun to share with you our adventures and explorations as we discover what Minnesota is all about. I will try and post something new every Monday.
This weekend, the whole family went to Minehaha Falls. Can you believe that this is barely a 30 minute drive from our home? ...and we live less than 10 minutes away from Downtown Minneapolis!
(Minnehaha Falls)

The waterfall was gorgeous and there were trees everywhere. Minnehaha Falls and Minnehaha Creek is part of a system that extends from Lake Minnetonka and flows for 22 miles through several suburbs west of Minneapolis. Including the Lake Minnetonka, the watershed for the creek covers 181 square miles. What makes it special is the 53 foot Minnehaha Falls located near where the creek and the Mississippi River meet.

(Views of the Mississippi River)

We wanted to check out the trails near the bottom of the falls, but unfortuantely it was not accessible with a stroller. The park is divided into two parts - the manicured park at the top and the more natural environment at the bottom, near the falls.

(Minnehaha Garden)

Even though we had to stay in the park area, we had a lovely time walking. We could not have asked for a more beautiful day.

I look forward to visiting again when Parker is just a bit older. Then we can go to the nature trails at the bottom of the Falls as well as rent one of these ADORABLE bikes...I fell in love with the yellow and white stripe awnings!

Minnehaha is definitely a strange name (I often wonder where the names in the Minnesota area come from...they all seem a bit different to me). The name is often translated as "Laughing Water", however the correct translation is actually "curling water" or "waterfall". The name comes from the Dakota language.
I hope that all of you had as lovely of a weekend as we did.

Friday, August 22, 2008

This weekend, I have to organize a TON of photos (mostly of Parker) and burn the picture Cd's for all of our family. But in the mean time, I wanted to leave you with these cute pictures of a super cool boy. The pictures are a month old and Parker all ready can not wear his little top and jeans, but I still had to show them off.

Hope you all have a GREAT weekend! Talk to you on Monday!

All my love,



I know it is "early", but I am all ready so excited for Halloween. It is definitely tied with Christmas for my favorite holiday. Actually, I may even love Halloween more. I spent all of last weekend going through my collection of Halloween decorations to get them organized and ready. Last year, I didn't get my Halloween fix since we had just moved to Minneapolis and I was pregnant. Phillip and I usually host a party and go all out for the event. I am not sure if we will do a party yet this year, but I know that I am going to go all out for our little Trick or Treaters!

Our old house in Boise was located in a great family neighborhood. You would think that I would have tons of kids knocking on my door - but I didn't get one! Not even the little girl across the street!! And believe me - I went all out for decorations and even bought the BIG candy candy corn at my house! Unfortunately, a couple blocks up from our house was this street of HUGE money homes. The whole street would go all out for the event. Seriously - some of these homes would even hire actors to play zombies and such for the grave yard scenes. Police had to monitor traffic because the entire city would trick or treat on that street. It was actually really cool and I loved watching all of the kids get so excited about it. But alas, as hard as I tried, my little old house just could not compete. But this year...!

Last year I had 40 kids - almost all of them little. I felt so bad because I barely carved a pumpkin for them. This year, they are in for a treat! I have BIG plans! I am determined to be known as the coolest house to visit for Halloween.

Last year, I purchased this 6 foot mummy at Grandin Road. I am going to place him next to my door to welcome the kids.

I also got these ghosts from Grandin Road. Very EERIE! Just imagine them next to a cemetery scene with some fog...

Check out Grandin Road's Halloween Haven shop for more fun products.( ) Be sure to check them out after Halloween when they have their big sale - that is how I purchased my cool mummy.

Johnson & Johnson Introduces "Nothing But Tears" Shampoo to Toughen Up Newborns

Is it wrong of me to find this so incredibly funny?
To read the rest of the article:

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Go Josiah!

In the earlier post, I mentioned the American Idol audition of Josiah. Here is the short clip of his audition.

Apparently, even though he didn't make it to the final group for American Idol, he has had plenty of other doors open for him. It looks like I wasn't the only one that fell in love with his singer/song writer ways. Ellen DeGeneres invited him onto her show a while back. Josiah has also been talking to a few record labels as well. I know that he is hoping for a deal this summer...I will have to do more digging. I can tell that I will like his indie style if he is able to make an record of his own.

Video Wednesday

I haven't heard this song in a while and completely forgot about it. I stumbled on the video this morning and I have been in a great mood ever since. How can anyone listen to this song and not instantly tap their foot and have a smile on their face? Listen to it - I bet you can't do it!

Phillip and I are big American Idol fans. This past season, during the Hollywood auditions, I remember that one of our fave hopefuls played this song during his audition. It took guts and Simon loved it, as well as Phillip and I. Unfortunately, the hopeful (I think his name was Josiah) got a bit more "artsy" in his other songs and put the judges off. I was disappointed he didn't make it. Hopefully, we will see him audition and try again next January.

Tuesday, August 19, 2008


Sometimes, when Parker is taking a nap, I spend a few minutes browsing Etsy. I am obsessed with Etsy. If you are interested in unique, handmade items then Etsy is the place to go. Every time I browse this site I get so frustrated. There are so many talented people out there and I am not one of them. It is so frustrating to have an eye for design yet lack the knowledge and skill to make anything of it. It is my own fault. I never learned how to sew or sketch. It is something I have always inteded on doing, but have not yet gotten around to it. Shame on me!

I found Vicky Riley on Etsy and immediately fell for her adorable little clutch bags. They are so sweet and vintage styled! I could totally see these selling in my fave store, Anthropologie. If I ever get to fulfill my dream of owning my own shop, I would definitely want to carry these bags made by Vicky.

The pleating reminds me of something the women in the 40's would wear. Check out Vicky's other adorable bags at For more fantastic Etsy, go to

Monday, August 18, 2008

Walk the Plank

Phillip takes advantage of the warm weather by working on whatever outdoor projects that need to be done to this "money pit" of a house we bought. The first outdoor project is the front yard - namely the front porch. It is the only part of this old house that was not structurally sound. You can't tell in the before picture, but the porch is not square AT ALL.

Once we received quotes from contractors on how many thousands it would cost us to have a professional redo our porch, Phillip decided that he would tackle the project himself. Now, I have always said that Phillip is one of the smartest guys I have ever known, but THIS??!! I must say, even though the progress is slow, I am impressed. He completely deconstructed our old porch. Drew up plans to present to the city to get a building permit. Dug holes and framed the supports. Removed the old columns and propped the house on some sort of stilt system. And now he has begun laying the floor boards. Yay! All of this time, I have had to literally climb into our house and/or walk some sort of plank to get into the front door. I am so excited to have some sort of flooring in place. I can't wait to see what it looks like when he is completely finished. I will keep you posted on the progress!

All-American Past Time

This Sunday we went to the Twins baseball game with a couple of friends. The game was great...initially it looked like we would win hands down, but toward the end we weren't so sure. Of course the Twins came out on top and beat Seattle 11 to 8. It was a great game. Parker was quite the whole game - well, except when I kept trying to make him smile for the picture with Jess. I think he was just amazed by the lights and much visual stimulation! This is his second pro baseball game in his 7 months of life. I'm guessing that he will be a Twins fan for life - no matter where we live in the future.

Parker is 7 Months Old!

It is hard to believe that Phillip and I have been parents for 7 months all ready. I never would have thought that I would love being a parent as much as I do. I miss Parker every night (well, almost) when we put him to bed. I look forward to greeting his smiling face when he wakes up in the long as it is not too early.

With only 3 hours of sleep...

I finally decided to take a moment and get the basic outline of this blog done. I am so excited that this will finally go live! I hope to post all sorts of things - pictures of Parker and our remodeling projects, beautiful things and thoughts that always inspire me...whatever strikes my fancy. If no one cares to read, then at the very least I have a personal journal of all of the changing things going on in my life. I hope that you all post comments from time to time.

Be patient with me. I am just figuring out this whole blog thing. For those of you out there that have been doing this for a while, I welcome any tips and advice.