Monthly Archives: March 2012

Pinteractive: DIY Moss Letter

We recently installed a new media unit in our living room. The purpose of this new (and massive) media unit was to hide our shoe and coat storage (from a certain mobile toddler), add more hidden storage of AM’s toys and to store our miscellaneous things (so that our dining room table was no longer being used as a resting place for random junk).

Here was our original media unit (it was just a TV stand). We lived with this for nearly 7 years. The pictures behind the TV had been up for nearly 5 years. We clearly don’t change our decor very often.

Tv stand before

With the new media unit, we no longer needed to hang the 4 pictures and large mirror (since the media unit would be covering them). As we started to take down the frames and mirror, we saw that the mirror was hanging on an anchored screw.

And wouldn’t you know… the anchored screw sat above the new media unit. We didn’t want to deal with removing it, spackling over it and repainting.
empty space
(Please ignore the fact that I’m watching a terrible and not very funny TV show)

So I took to Pinterest.

I was inspired by the idea of hanging a large moss letter.

I didn’t want to hang another picture here. I wanted something that looked a little cleaner.

I purchased a wooden letter “M” (M is for Marvelous! or my last name. whatever.) from Joann Fabric using a 40% off coupon. I think this letter only ended up costing like $3.50?
wood M

I purchased this moss table runner from Michael’s with a 40% off coupon. This ended up costing around $8. I went with the table runner because it seemed to contain more moss than the bags with loose moss.
moss runner

Because the moss runner was all attached to some mesh, I chose to wrap the wooden letter like a present (with the courtesy of a hot glue gun). I also realized, while wrapping, that it would be a good idea to affix some wire to the letter (and underneath the moss) for hanging.

hanging wire

More wrapping:
wrapping the M

The front:
front of M

The back:
back of M

The result:
finished product

I realized, as I was packing away the leftover moss, that I was a total idiot that didn’t realize that the moss runner was folded in half. If you notice in the pictures above, there is moss on both sides as I’m wrapping the letter. That is due to the fact that I never unfolded the moss runner. It was kind of difficult to wrap the letter. The only reason this worked out was because the letter didn’t have any curves.  So… yes, I’m a bit of an idiot sometimes.

I’m not sure how I feel about the letter. Jeremy likes that it is simple and “clean” looking.  I think it looks lonely.



Filed under Charm City Kim Creates

Dancing Machine (and other random parenting stuff)

Another post about Annmarie! You’ve been warned.

Lately she’s been doing a lot of what I am assuming is dancing. She does this weird sumo stance and slowly bobs up and down. This video doesn’t do it justice but take my word when I say it is the cutest thing ever.

She’s also started to sit on the stairs. While I realize that it doesn’t sound very amazing or interesting, Jeremy and I think it is incredibly adorable (since just about everything she does is adorable in our eyes… not that we’re biased or anything).

She walks backwards to the stairs, slowly eases herself down and then sits completely. I love it.
AM sitting

Our plan to move Annmarie from her bottles of milk to sippy cups of milk fell apart when she was sick on Friday. It seemed she wanted a lot of comfort this weekend and as much as I hate typing this (and saying it out loud is even worse), she finds “sucking” to be very soothing.

Off topic of Annmarie but still in the realm of parenting, I read this article today and it really struck a nerve with me. I was SO guilty of this (not wanting a daughter) but now cannot imagine my life without a little girl.

When Women Don’t Want Daughters

Now I’m feeling a little empowered with my baby girl. I’ve encountered a 2nd surge of pregnant friends and coworkers (seriously, I know of 7 people currently pregnant) and am all wishing them happy and healthy baby girls (although I already know that 2 of them are having boys so I’m wishing them a happy and healthy baby boy!).

And lastly, I’m moving the topic towards vegetarianism and parenting. If you know me, you know that I’m a vegetarian. I’m not a vegan although I don’t eat a lot of dairy. Jeremy is a vegetarian. We feed Annmarie a vegetarian diet.

People used to give me a hard time about it but, surprisingly, nobody has said anything since Annmarie has been born. Regardless, this comment (on a blog I frequent) regarding their decision to feed their child a vegetarian diet was so spot on.  I want to print this out and carry it around with me in case anyone questions my decision.  I also love appreciate the commenter’s stance on her child’s potential to “experience” with foods outside of the household norm because I completely share her perspective.


Filed under Uncategorized

She Loves Food: An Update on AM

This post is all about Annmarie. You’ve been warned. If you don’t care about her developmental progress, feel free to close the browser. I promise it won’t hurt my feelings. This really is for the handful of people that don’t get to see Annmarie and maybe want to know how she’s doing.

Babbling brook

Annmarie really is a babbler. While the things she says sound like “mama” and “dada” and “yaya” and whatever – I really don’t think she is attributing any of that to any particular thing. It seems like she calls me and Jeremy “mama” and “dada” both but she also seems to refer to the dogs the same way… and anything else for that matter.

I’ve been told that her cousin who is 2 weeks older is already saying “ball” and “dog” (and apparently is using them correctly).

The other child at daycare who is the SAME EXACT AGE is saying “bye bye”.

I know you’re not supposed to compare but it is hard not to sometimes. The only thing she consistently says is “yeah?” She points or motions towards something and says, “yeah?” This means she wants whatever she’s pointing to (and it is the cutest thing ever thankyouverymuch… unless she KEEPS DOING IT and you have no idea what she’s pointing towards OR she’s constantly pointing towards a bunch of sharp knives).

Recently she has started to do something new when you try to hand her what you think she is motioning towards and it isn’t what she wants:

It cracks me up. Her throwing her face away from the object seems sort of dramatic. I love it. The video was short because she never seems to do stuff on camera. And I knew if I kept pushing my luck with her turning her head, she’d start screaming or slapping the object away (another sometimes funny thing I think she does).

Lately, Jeremy and I have been loudly pronouncing the name of the object we’re handing her. “You want the BALL? THE BALL? You want the BALL?” Sometimes I feel like we treat her like one of the dogs.


I’ve admitted that I’m still breastfeeding (twice a day) previously and am now admitting that I am STILL doing it. Although I think I’m going to cut out the first morning session. I think by continuing to breastfeed, it’ll make it more difficult to get her away from her bottles and pacifier. But I don’t know if that’s true. Her pediatrician told us we needed to start weaning her off of the bottle but that we didn’t need to wean her from her pacifier until around 18 months (because we’d be taking away other comforts like a bottle and my boobs between 12 – 18 months).

I’ve noticed that she is starting to drink her milk from sippy cups. Granted, we only give her some milk in sippy cups when we want to tide her over quickly but this seems to be some steps in the right direction since previously she would take a sip from her sippy cup and if milk was in there, she’d throw the cup across the room.

Hungry Hippo

Our daycare provider said it best, “She loves food.” Seriously. This girl has an appetite like no other. I honestly wonder how she is able to fit this food into her body. That video posted above? That is the scene every day I pick her up from daycare. As soon as we get in the house, she toddles into the kitchen and starts saying, “yeah?”

Anytime you eat something, she walks over with her mouth wide open. Jeremy and I sometimes take turns eating meals so that one of us can distract her while the other one scarfs down their food. I worry that we’ve formed some bad habits in that we will always give her a piece of whatever we’re eating (and this leads me back to how I sometimes feel like we’ve turned her into one of the dogs begging for food).

She’s reached a point where she prefers to feed herself (although not with any sort of utensil). She’ll allow being spoon fed yogurt but if it is a finger-type food, she won’t take it if you try to put it directly in her mouth. This has actually made my life somewhat easier in the evenings because I’m able to put her in her high chair, place her dinner (noodles or cut up pieces of something) onto her tray, and wash her bottles, food containers, etc.

5pm (dinnertime) - Day 6
I’m not sure how to introduce utensils. She likes to put spoons in her mouth but with nothing on them.

And just because…

This picture makes me laugh.
Like father like daughter


Filed under Charm City Kim Breeds

Pinteractive: Magnetic Chalkboard

I do have other things going on other than my incessant need to get Pinteractive, I swear. It’s just that With Jeremy NOT studying for anything anymore, I’m actually able to get around to doing the crafty things I’ve been eyeballing on Pinterest. I just hit up JoAnn Fabrics and hope to get sewing again soon.

I had seen this pin awhile ago and loved the idea. Even though the pinned project just created a magnet board, the pinner’s suggestion of painting it with chalkboard paint was brilliant.  A few weeks later, I saw that one of my favorite fashion bloggers had actually followed through with the plan.

Annmarie really loves the alphabet magnets given to us by Myriam. She was also gifted another magnet set (barnyard animals!) for her birthday and I knew we didn’t have enough room on our fridge. I know that sounds ridiculous but it really is due to the placement of our appliances. We can’t place magnets that stick out on one of the doors because it hits the wall. Fantastic, right?

I thought of the pin I had seen and wanted to install something similar. We just upgraded our TV stand and were able to pack away a lot of things. I’ll have to do a post on that sometime because I love organization. While we aren’t completely organized, we are taking steps in the right direction and it makes me SO HAPPY.


We went to wal-Fart to pick up the infamous “oil drip pan”. I didn’t really understand how large it would be until we were at the store. This thing is massive. But I was afraid that a cookie sheet would be too small. And since the pan was only like $10, I figured if we hated it – it wasn’t like a huge investment (and we could just return it, I suppose).

Our supplies:
Paint supplies
Jeremy noticed that the chalkboard paint said to use a foam brush or roller for the paint. I didn’t want to spend any more money on this project because I am CHEAP and was relieved that I had some foam brushes from a previous project.

The oil drip pan:
Oil drip pan (before paint)
For size context, the oil drip pan is sitting in front of my washer and dryer. This thing is huge. We had to wipe it down a few times to get rid of the light greasy coating.

After 1 coat of chalkboard paint:
Chalkboard paint (1st coat)

I’m happy that I read Jen’s blog and she noted that she had to do 4 coats. If I hadn’t, I probably would have been really worried about the outcome of the project. So take comfort in knowing that the first coat will be incredibly streaky. It will take you about 4 coats to get a thick and even looking finish.

The final product:
Magnetic chalkboard

I didn’t feel like snapping a photo with the “good camera” and then uploading it. This photo was taken with my phone.

We adhered the pan to the wall using velcro.

See the strange lines of chalk on the pan? I was trying to show Annmarie how to use chalk.  Those are Annmarie’s works of art.   She seemed like she really understood chalk at first but every subsequent attempt to draw on the board was ruined by her trying to eat the chalk.

We used to keep a pack & play with a changing table in this spot but since we didn’t really need the giant pack & play (it was eating up precious real estate in our house), we thought we could use this space as a nice little play area in our dining room/living room. Although who are we kidding. The entire house is Annmarie’s play area.



Filed under Charm City Kim Creates

Pinteractive: DIY Fabric Bins

I have to say, Nanette‘s Pinteractive challenge.  It is definitely keeping me motivated to try things (instead of always aimlessly pinning lots and lots of things and saying, “I should do that someday”).  Hopefully I’ll get to a sewing project soon but this is one step closer to sewing since it dealt with fabric.

This is kind of cheating.  I actually didn’t “pin” this (although I did just pin this for the sake of this activity).  I’m an avid reader of this blog, I Heart Organization, because I LOVE organization.  I envy her ridiculously organized house.  She posted this simple project and I thought, “what a great idea!  I can do that.”  So I set out to do it this weekend (and then I pinned it about 10 minutes ago so I can consider this a Pinteractive activity).

This project entailed covering cardboard boxes in fabric and using it as toy storage.  With Annmarie’s toy collection expanding rapidly, we were running out of spaces and places to put her toys.  I didn’t want to continue buying baskets (because I am cheap and our house is going to be overrun with baskets) so I loved this idea.

We had the perfect cardboard box (it held all of Jeremy’s bar prep material).

I purchased fabric (that was only $3.97/yard from Wal-fart) and spray adhesive.

I probably should have read the blogger’s instructions better because I definitely just winged it.  I’m sure there were better ways and I definitely inhaled a large amount of that spray adhesive (so much so that I thought I had damaged my brain because I couldn’t speak in full sentences for the rest of the day).  But I’m mostly happy with the results.

Here’s the box I started with:
cardboard box

After adhering the first strip of fabric:
Halfway done

The finished product:
A new box?

I’m only mostly happy with it because I think it looks like one of those open wrapped boxes you see around the holidays (when people are collecting toy donations).  The blogger had added grommets to her boxes with rope handles.  That detail added a really nice finished look that made the boxes look more like bins (and not wrapped boxes).

I’m too cheap to buy a grommet maker thingy (although Jeremy informed me that his mom has one).  If I can borrow one, I think I’ll add handles.  But it is serving its intended purpose so that’s all that matters for now.



Filed under Charm City Kim Creates

Tagged – 11 Questions

My friend, Myriam, tagged me in a post where I was tasked with answering 11 questions. The rules of this game are:

  1. You must post the rules
  2. Answer the 11 questions that the tagger posted for you & then create 11 questions to ask the people you’ve tagged
  3. Tag 11 people and link them in your post
  4. Let them know you have tagged them

I can tell you that I don’t have 11 blog friends so I’ll have already failed this game. But here are my answers to Myriam’s questions:

1. If money were no object, what would you buy right now?
I’m so boring – I’d buy a new house. While I love living in Baltimore City most of the time, I am dying to leave my current home for greener pastures (or at least a yard, a somewhat smoke-free environment or at least enough property so that if my neighbor is smoking outside I am not drowning in their smoke, and some additional space).

2. Who is your favorite TV character and why?
Schmidt from New Girl. He is HILARIOUS and despite his douchey appearances, his character has a good heart. And he’s hilarious. Like laugh out loud hilarious.

3. What shameful habit do you have?
I think Jeremy should answer this because I don’t think I have any shameful habits THANKYOUVERYMUCH.  I honestly can’t think of a bad habit.  I have lots of bad qualities (like how I am easily distracted but that’s not really a habit).

4. What toy do you wish you could play with right now but refrain from because you’re an adult?
I have no idea what toys are even out there outside of baby/toddler toys. I’m out of touch. But I can say there are a lot of fashion trends that I like but am afraid to wear because I think I’m too old.

5. What strange thing is in your purse right now?
Sadly, I don’t really have anything strange. I try to stay on top of my purse (which is the diaper bag because I’m too lazy to switch between bags). Some things that people might find strange but that I find practical are:

  • a purse hook (for hanging my purse on tables if I don’t want to put it on the ground)
  •   hairbrush
  •   nail file
  •   antibacterial hand stuff (I’m a mom – enough said)
  •   camera (you never know when you’ll find yourself in a picture worthy moment!)

I guess the thing that garners the most looks is my massive pile of coupons (usually Bed, Bath and Beyond). I HATE when I go somewhere and realize I have a coupon but that I left it at home. I prevent this by carrying coupons on me AT ALL TIMES. I need a better system though because it makes me look batshit crazy when I’m sifting through a massive pile of papers at the register.

6. What talent do you wish you had?
Oh geez – there are a few. I wish I could sing. Or play a musical instrument really well. or was an amazing artist. Or design and sew things really well. I’m good with those.

7. What website do you visit on a regular basis? (pinterest and facebook don’t count)
Just one? I visit several on a regular basis and they are all so different. I read home improvement blogs (my current favorite is Young House Love), fashion blogs (I’ve previously listed the ones I love), mom blogs (I love MODG). There are too many to list!

8. What state would you live in if you could live in any state in the US?
I always go back and forth between New York (and by New York, I mean New York City) and California (despite never having lived or even visited California before). I’m always up for moving out of Maryland but have stipulated that it must be a state that is along a coast. Growing up in Maryland has made me accustomed to being in a reasonably driveable distance to a beach. I like that. I don’t want to be land locked!

9. What is your favorite local restaurant? (no chains allowed)
It really depends on my mood. Here are a few places that I love:

  • DiPasquale’s (Italian deli / sandwich shop)
  • Samos (Greek restaurant)
  • Sticky Rice (this is a sort of chain. There is a location in DC. They have tater tots! And lots of great vegetarian ‘sushi’)
  • Liquid Earth (Vegan restaurant / fresh juices bar. I don’t eat here often but I like it a lot)
  • The Dogwood (locally grown food – eclectic mix located in Hampden)

10. Fruity or chocolaty?
Again – it depends on my mood. But one of my favorite desserty snacks is a chocolate covered banana. It is the best of both worlds!

11. What weird things bother you that wouldn’t bother other people?
I hate when certain people use a lot of “um” and “uh“s in their presentation. It drives me up a wall! I know most people say “um” in their daily conversations but I am really trying hard not to do this. When someone is in a position where they are presenting something (and their position requires them to do this quite frequently from being a manager to a lawyer) and they can’t get out a simple sentence without a few “ums” and “uhs” – it is hard for me to take them seriously.

As for who I will tag… I tag nobody. I don’t have 11 people to tag! I’m opening these questions up to anyone that reads my blog. You can blog your answers or simply leave them in my comments.


  1. Of all the places you’ve ever visited, what was your favorite?
  2. E-Reader or real book? Why?
  3. What is your favorite book and why?
  4. What scares you?
  5. What’s your favorite mealtime (breakfast, lunch or dinner)?
  6. On what do you spend the most money (necessities don’t count! I don’t want to read answers like, “rent/mortgage” or “food”. I want to read about your extensive taxidermy collection.)
  7. What is your favorite physical attribute?
  8. What physical attribute are you most attracted to?
  9. What is your dream job?
  10. Morning person or night owl?
  11. Isn’t my baby the cutest? (seriously – isn’t she?)

Smile - Day 5


Filed under Charm City Kim Rambles

Pinteractive – Sweet Potato Burger

I’ll try not to ramble too much (my brain is a bit mushy from serving as a juror for the last few days!) – but I meant to blog about my pinteractive stuff last week and earlier this week.  I’ve done a few hair styles but never snapped a photo and have since cut my hair a few inches so the long styles I was trying out won’t work anymore.  But this week’s Pinteractive post is another food post.

I saw this pin for a sweet potato burger recipe.  I am always looking for a good veggie burger and I was also on the market for something new to feed Annmarie.

sweet potato burger

I hate coating/breading things and yet I found myself in that same stupid predicament with this recipe.  It consisted of mashed baked sweet potatoes and cannelini beans.  You mash the 2 together with some spices and then try to form patties.  The recipe warns that the patties will be very moist.  I think that was an understatement.

These were a major pain in the ass to make because it was difficult to get them to keep their shape (so transferring them to get coated in Panko flakes and then transferring them again to a pan to fry wasn’t very clean).

sweet potato burger

But the verdict?  These were really good.  Annmarie also approved.

enjoying the sweet potato burger

But would I make these again?  Probably not.  I don’t mind getting a little messy while cooking but I can only tolerate so much.  I’d definitely enjoy these if someone else made them for me though.



Filed under Charm City Kim Eats