My Little Game-Changer

I started blogging a few years back not for anything else but to destress— destress from work, destress from my family, destress from my Long Distance Relationship, destress in general. All kinds and all sorts. So I blogged; I blogged about my family, I blogged about my little adventures/travels here and there, I blogged about Marco and I blogged about what I liked to wear, and that made me feel good. I don’t know why but it just did. The Social Tumbleweed was what it was, it was a semi-online journal where I could just log in whenever I felt like it and write about the most random things in my life.

Since Cassie, things have been a bit more different, I barely have time to sleep let alone blog and another thing that bothered me was losing all that pregnancy weight. I didn’t like doing #OOTDs because most of the clothes that I normally wear didn’t fit me yet and I refused to buy anything bigger. Well, its been a year and a month since Cassie and I’m slowly finding a way to my “new norm” , life with a baby. I’ve lost my pregnancy weight but I still have that little pouch in my belly that I need to work on, I still enjoy clothes but I’ve realized that I enjoy dressing up Cassie as much as I enjoy dressing up myself, maybe even more.

So here it is, probably my first decent OOTD since I had Cassie.

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(JUMPSUIT:Black; Material Girl/ JACKET: thrifted denim band jacket; Plato’s Closet/ BEANIE: Gray knitted; Wet Seal/ SOCKS: gray slouched knee high socks; Wet Seal/ SHOES: Olive military boot wedges, Charlotte Russe)

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I’ve slowly started fitting back to my old clothes hence today’s OOTD but I think the main reason why I’m posting one today is because I’m discreetly twinning with Cassie. Did I ever mention that I like to match my baby A LOT? Haha. I’ll probably keep doing that until she’s old enough to tell me to stop. 😀

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(BEANIE: gifted, part of a set/ SWEATER: knitted band jacket; Baby Gap/ DRESS: thrifted/ SHOES: black high cut boots; Teeny Toes from Payless)

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Today, I am blogging because I think yesterday’s events deserve an entry. Two CRAZY things happened:

ONE– Cassie pooped in her potty for the 1st time (Yay!) I was about to bathe her in the bathtub when I saw her make her “poopie face” and so I grabbed her quickly and had her sit in her potty. Ta-da. Out came the poop. Proud mom here. After I cleaned her up I bathed her, I turned my back for a millisecond to wash the soap of my hands and as soon as I was about to pick her up I saw it…two little poopies floating in the bath tub and she was playing with it.I guess she wasn’t done pooping when I cleaned her up. I freaked out a bit, screamed for my husband to help me and then proceed to bathe her AGAIN and I got over it.

TWO– It was lunch and I was feeding Cassie rice and sausage, I know she’s supposed to sit down in her high chair the entire duration of the meal but she kept whining wanting to go down and I just didn’t want to deal with it after the morning incident so I let her walk around. One of my sisters fed our house dog, Todd, some of her rice scraps earlier and Cassie somehow managed to find her way to Todd’s bowl and rummaged through it. I found her with rice in her hand and she was chewing. Now I honestly don’t know if she was still chewing the rice I gave her or if she placed some of that “dirty rice” in her mouth so of course I freaked out again. Yes, I felt like I won “The Worst Mother of the Year” award  for that day and I decided that I couldn’t handle anymore so I took a break and told Marco he had to take over.

Today, we’re making up for yesterday’s events, we heard mass and had brunch at Black Walnut Cafe with Cassie’s Ninang Gela and Unclie Pierre from Florida. Here’s what my baby and I look like when I’m not making her swim with poop or making her eat dog scraps. I’m kidding.

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How it is most of the time, mommy chasing Cassie. 😀

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This is my own version of motherhood, it’s far from perfect and full of crazy, disgusting, frustrating accidents that I welcome whole heartedly (as long as I learn from them and most importantly as long as they don’t hurt Cassie). Still loving every single moment of it.

~Rhea

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Cassie Turns One: Cassie and the Chocolate Factory

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The things we do for Cassie, Marco and I DIY-ed our version of the Wonka Factory Gates. In hindsight, we probably could have made this more sturdy but we didn’t foresee the wind that afternoon.

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We filled Cassie’s dessert table with assorted sweets—gum balls, chocolates, candies, cookies, anything and everything colorful. Of course we could not have a Wonka-themed party without actual Wonka candies.

Below are more detailed photos of the dessert table, my favorite part of the party.

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Marco and I tried to go in theme in our floral tops, purple coats and black top hats.

Trivia: Marco is wearing his old Joker costume that I recycled by sewing on a floral cloth to pass as Willy Wonka’s vest.

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Cassie’s Wonka Themed cake from My Dulce Cake, a local Houston cake shop that has been getting good reviews and has been featured in the Knot, Ruffled and the Food Network. Y’all should check them out!

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And this would have to be one of the best gifts ever…..thanks so much to the Quirays especially Marie for this labor of love, you are extremely talented (y’all should check her Etsy store). This completed Cassie’s dessert table and made it more perfect than ever!

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I even DIY-ed some Wonka Bars although none of them had the golden ticket. I’m actually glad I found some Wonka Bar wrapper printables online, I wrapped the Hershey’s bar with foil and wrapped the printables around it once done. It would’ve been easier if the Hershey’s bar had its old packaging.

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Rico’s neighborhood-famous French Macaroons, of course I had him Wonkafy them by coloring it purple. They were the first to go.

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Ninang Pauline’s contribution to the party, homemade Cookies and Cream Cake pops that was

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Framed some Wonka sayings from the movie and used some of them as part of the table centerpiece.

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This will have to do for “lickable wallpaper”, they’re edible and they’re on the wall. Haha.

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Last minute chocolate fondue, thanks to the Babas’ and the Vera’s for lending me your fondue machines even if we asked last minute.

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Fizzy Lifting Drink station

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Tried to take a photo before we could finish setting up the food table. Marco cooked Lengua, Chicken Anette (I honestly don’t know if I’m spelling that right) and made Cheeseball dip—they were all a hit. And we ordered Spaghetti, Barbecue and Egg rolls and the Almacens brought us Pancit (you guys are the best! thanks geng). The Wonka Bar Mocha Cake, which we used for her cake smash

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Cassie’s giveaways.

For Adults, I recycled her old baby food jars by painting the covers purple and sterilizing the actual jars. I then made my own personal template to wrap around the jars that included a picture of an Oompa Loompa and a chocolate bar. For the sizing of the printable, I randomly searched a water bottle template and pretty much just worked on it by editing the design. I filled up the jars with a mixture of Whoppers and M&Ms combined. I then made a small version of the Golden Ticket as her “Thank You” labels and attached them around the jars.

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For Kids, I used thesame picture of the Oompa Loompa but printed out bigger versions of them, cut them out and pasted them on purple gift bags that I bought from the dollar store. I printed out bigger versions of the Golden Ticket Thank You labels and pasted them on the gift bags as well. And since I was trying to go for certain look where it seemed like the Oompa Loompas were holding the Golden Ticket, I had to look for printable hands (or white gloves rather) online. It’s a good thing I thought about Mickey Mouse’s hands looking similar to the Oompa Loompas’ white-gloved-hands, so I just googled “Mickey Mouse hand” and it was a breeze from there. So yeah…those are Mickey Mouse hands. Haha.

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What was inside the goody bags: Shades that we passed off as Wonka goggles, Colorful bouncy ball that we passed off as an everlasting gobstopper, a bunch of wonka candies and a bunch of non-wonka candies.

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And my artist sister, Angelie (the one who painted Cassie’s tree in our room) pulled through and did an all nighter to finish the giant-sized Charlie and the Chocolate Factory Characters that we displayed in the hallway downstairs. Now it sits in the game room upstairs with the Wonka contract where the guests signed.

Below is a closer look at the characters. Colored Construction paper, colored pencils, pencil, scissors, glue and shading skills and voila…she wasn’t too happy with the outcome but artists are usually their own worst critic. Cassie and I loved it langga, thanks again for doing this.

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Veruca Salt

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Mike Teavee

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Augustus Gloop

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Violet Beauregard

Images were copied from the free online printables of Activity Village.co.uk . Printed some of these for the older kids to color as well.

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Here’s the Wonka contract image that I enlarged and stuck to a cartolina to serve as her guest book. Thank you Walgreens for being so efficient!

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I also made a snapchat filter in theme with Cassie’s Charlie and the Chocolate Factory Party. Of course I had to cater to my millennial siblings’ generation, haha.

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This little girl did not want to wear the birthday romper we got her. She probably found the tulle too itchy, its a good thing we got her this candyland tutu as back up.

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Daddy Marco as Willy Wonka holding my DIY Wonka Hat pull-a-string piñata.

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We had a bunch of younger kids as guests so I opted to make a pull-a-string piñata rather than the piñata that you whacked with stick.

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….And Olivia (or Mommy Ann rather pulled out the lucky string)

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Thanks to all the guests who made it to Cassie’s First Birthday. I wish we took photos with every single one of you guys but the crazy birthday schedule didn’t permit it. Thank you for showing our little girl much love on her birthday celebration.

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IVL would have to win Best Costume. She came in as an Oompa Loompa on point!

For Cassie’s photobooth, I just used the altar area close to my parents room and used the purple table cloth as a background. I enlarged some of the photos and printed them in color, stuck them to hard cardboard, cut them out then stuck some art craft sticks on them to make photobooth props.

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I transferred Cassie’s toys from upstairs and made a small play area in the living room for them to play in since most of her guests were infants. For the older kids, Marco and I rented a bouncy house and placed it in the backyard.

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Whew, we survived my Mr. Willy Wonka!

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Printed out Cassie’s monthly milestone photos to display in the cake smash area. The colorful candy themed balloons and the large purple #1 balloon were all ordered through Amazon. (my ever reliable favorite)

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We did Cassie’s smash cake with just us, family. It was a call I made a few days before her birthday celebration, I knew she was going to be a bit overwhelmed with all the activities and all the people in the party.

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And we opened gifts on her actual birthday just because we wanted her to do something special on her actual day. We would like to thank everyone who made it to her birthday celebration, thank you for your presence and your presents. Haha. And thank you to all those family members and friends who showed her love even across the miles by sending her gifts and most importantly prayers. And lastly thanks to all those who contributed and helped out to make this birthday celebration possible, Cassie probably won’t remember any of these but hopefully a few years from now she’ll see these photos and realize for people to go through all that trouble to throw her a birthday she won’t even remember, she must be really loved. We love you Cassie!

~Mommy Rhea

Black, White and Pink—We’re Having a Baby Girl!

My LaVista family decided to throw me a “simple” baby shower/ despedida party for me and Marco before leaving for the US; they opted to do it at home with close family and friends. On the morning of the baby shower the winds were blowing our tents like crazy and the rain wouldn’t stop pouring. Since everything was pretty much DIY except for the food (we had it catered) we had trouble doing the set up, we were scared that the winds might tip over Mita Wee’s crystal stands for the candies and might just blow away Mita Bo’s tea cup collection but I swear as soon as the baby shower started the weather turned out for the best. We didn’t expect the food to be more than enough too so I’m sure that God was with us during this baby shower.

This was literally a “Ramas-girls production” and it was a complete success. To my lovely aunts, Mita Bo and Mita Wee, who planned this entire event, I really appreciate you doing this for me. Thanks to Dada Benj, Mita Bo (tea set up) and Mita Wee (prize table set up) for throwing the baby shower and for allowing me to take part in the execution. Ate Roma and Kuya JJ for helping us with the pink goodies for the goodies table (we had pink fondue and pink kropek that wasn’t food-dyed, mind you), Paolo and Brianna for helping us with balloons and putting up the decorations, Eunice for the cute baby girl yumminess, I mean cupcakes that handed out as giveaways and all the manangs and manongs at home for helping us with pretty much everything especially the set-up… Thank you for this labor of love!!!

Here are some photos from the Baby Shower:

DIY Invitations I made using free printables online, ended up with invitation #3

My DIY Baby Wishes Printable Onesie Cut Out. I made it specifically for this baby shower

The actual onesies cut out we had printed on cardboard

Got some cute baby shower laundry pins to hang the wishes for the baby and placed them in one of those lace cut out cans that were left overs from my wedding last year

(Laundry Pins: from 168; 3 for P100/ Lace Cut-out Cans: from Target; $1.00 per can)

Can’t wait until Cassie gets to read these

Foldable fans for the guests

Our DIY set-up for the wishes/ prize table

How dainty, tea anyone? #TWG

Yes—our “Spriki” is a girl!

Fascinators laid on the center for the guests

Merienda Cena set up at home

The first few guests our the baby shower

My DIY word scramble printable. It was pretty simple, Microsoft Word all the way

With JC, Jasper, Ate Princess and Janine

Pastries and Dessert for the sweet tooth

Cupcakes care of my cousin. They were gorgeous, thanks Eunice!

Strawberry Fondue

Baby Bottle Game

Diaper Game

The winner of the Create-your-own-bag Game

My pretty aunts—the Climaco girls

My younger Climaco cousins 🙂

Our Ruiz de Luzuriaga/ Mendezona Family

Our Odilao/ Bisnar/ Lim Family

Our Climaco/ Ramas/ Sullano/ Ros Family

The “old” UP crew 🙂

My cutie pie god son, Mateo

Have a cupcake, thanks for coming guys!

~Rhea