Monday, March 23, 2015

Foyer Makeover

This is the front entrance of my house. My house is almost 100 years old. Charming? Yes! Lacking some amenities? Absolutely! One being a coat closet, and real foyer. What you see here is the entrance to the far right side of my living room. 
Times were simpler in 1923. Coat closets weren't a big thing, especially in Florida where there wasn't really a need for coats. We don't have basements OR attics either, mind you. Could you imagine peeps up north? I mean, where do you put all your stuff right? Well, the answer to that is you don't. Thankfully, for such an old house I do have pretty big closets, but that still doesn't fix the coat closet problem, and it DOES get cold here now that we're into 2015.

See that lovely coat tower? Or should I say candle holder that holds coats, scarves, and hats, surrounded by shoes, shovels and pails? Exactly! You don't, because there is nowhere to put that "stuff" because there is no coat closet, and we don't wear shoes in this house, so that is our lovely "shoe basket"on the floor there. 
This is a perfect example of something not having a place and therefore that something becomes a MESS which really messes with my OCD so something had to be done!
My parents have this beautiful credenza which would be perfect in that entryway, but until I figure out how to get it here from Jersey, IKEA had to come to my rescue. I found a cool buffet that I knew would go well and hold everything. So, Mike and Tommy got to work!

And they worked!!!!!
And they worked some more!
Until FINALLY..........

That buffet holds everything! Shoes, gloves, scarves, hats, umbrellas, toys and a diaper bag. I added a nice dim light that I turn on at night, a live palm branch and of course a key dish. Everything has a place!

Black and white area
Key dish-Target
Turquoise glass bud vase-Crate & Barrel

Not pictured? My big purse thrown on top of that buffet, Tommy's large blue sports car, and Jake's bone. They just didn't look good in the pic, but that's reality folks!
Have a great week!

Friday, March 20, 2015

A Week in iphone Photos

Hello Friends, and welcome to, "A week at the Andrews" through my iphone. It's gonna be really exciting, so WATCH OUT! 
I mentioned in my last post how my camera was broken right? Well, it still is, so the iphone cam is how I'm rolling these days. 
Let's start with the pic above. A fun new activity for Tommy is to sit at my vanity and play with my make-up. Fun for him, not for me, but who am I to stop him from rolling up my lipsticks up into the tubes or applying a little blush? 

Bought myself some white Birkenstocks. Never thought I'd be a Birks kind of gal, but I needed a change from the regular flip flop for a little more support. I introduce you to my new "summer shoe." Yes, it feels a lot like summer around here, and I don't mean to rub that in, by the way. Now here's the best part. The cheapest I could find some white Birkenstocks was HERE. But who wants to pay $89. when they aren't sure if they want to commit? Me! So- mine are copies for $19.99 from HERE and I LOVE them, and my tired dancer feet love them too!

This sweet boy hasn't been feeling well. He's wearing "the cone of shame" in this picture, but I zoomed in real close so you can't see it because he's humiliated enough as it is! That's called dog owner respect! Love this boy. ( :

Per usual Mike is a huge help with Tommy. You know how they say to nap while your baby naps? Well, Michael has managed to figure out a way to nap while Tommy is awake! I don't know how does it!

Oh, and we eat! 
Flat bread with mushrooms, emmental & parmesan cheese (Courtesy of Trader Joe's)
Mixed green salad (Courtesy of me)
Blackberries and Havarti cheese for Tommy. What can I say? The kid has a sophisticated palate.
A glass of Savignon Blanc. THIS ONE, For me that is! 
$1.49 daffodils from Trader Joe's

Oh, and....I mean.... come on!  Check out that crooked smile! 
I couldn't love him more.
Have a nice weekend.

Sunday, March 15, 2015

Strawberry Pancake Sunday

Okay moms, I'm sure you've made these, but I always forget how awesome they are! I usually make these pancakes for Tommy with blueberries, but since strawberries are in season that's what I used and they came out great! These pancakes are SO EASY, and very kid friendly. All you need is......

~1 ripe banana (preferably with brown spots)
~2 eggs
~Strawberries, blueberries, chocolate chips, pretty much anything you want!

Mash bananas with a fork and mix with the eggs. I used my mini cuisinart but you can also mix everything with a fork. Pour into pan with some butter or cooking spray. Done! Healthy and yummy!


Friday, March 13, 2015


Hello Friends! How have you been? We've been busy around here, and I let another week pass without a blog post, and I just hate it when that happens! Part of the reason is my camera, which is not cooperating. I really need to have it looked at, but haven't had the time, and being without it, has really made me realize how much I like to take pictures!
Mike travelled to Philly this week to do a promo spot for his upcoming performance with The Philly Pops, and we took Tommy to a local fair to ride ponies. Unfortunately he was too small so we just stared at the ponies. Don't feel bad.  He still "rules the roost," around here at Chez Andrew and is loved and spoiled beyond belief. He'll survive!
What's up for your weekend? I'm going out with a fun friend for drinks and Jazz, and the weather is supposed to beautiful. I ordered Tommy this Water Park Table and I'm hoping it arrives just in time. I'll also be experimenting with more toddler friendly smoothie recipes because Tommy is hooked on smoothies. Other than that, maybe a few open houses? We're still trying to find our dream house, which is difficult because our wish list is HUGE! 
 Hope everyone has a beautiful weekend.

Friday, February 27, 2015

Weekend + LINKS

Hi Everyone! What are you up to this weekend? I wish I could say I would be relaxing, but with a two year old, that's not quite possible! We will be taking our daily walks to the park, working around the house and maybe catching an open house or two. Yes, I'm looking at new homes! Mike is building a bench for the GORGEOUS table he made for us (Blog on that soon I promise) and we are also getting a visit from my FAVORITE Aunt Cathy. Can't wait to see her. It's been about 10 years! 
Check out these links from around the web and enjoy YOUR weekend...

~I printed out THIS weekly routine checklist to help keep myself organized. I'll let you know how it works out!

~I want to start sneaking more veggies into Tommy's diet. Gonna start with this GREEN MONSTER (that's what we'll call it) spinach smoothie.

~Just got this new LIP STAIN in "Flirtini," from my latest ipsy package. I love it! It's changed my life!

~MY FAVORITE OSCAR DRESS this year, just happens to be worn by my favorite girl.

~Made THIS LENTIL CHILI, brought to you by Ashley over at "Turquoise and Teale" a few weeks ago and it was delicious! Perfect for this chilly weather.

Have a nice weekend...

Photo VIA

Monday, February 16, 2015

Valentine's Day

How was your Valentine's Day? Ours was nice and relaxing. I woke up with Tommy and the two of us made heart shaped, hug and kiss pancakes with eggs. It was a chilly morning, so we lit the table top fireplace (see here) and when Michael woke, we all sat down for a nice breakfast together.
Next,  Tommy and I went on a long walk and then headed to the park while Mike went out and got flowers for me and balloons for Tommy. The rest of the day we put together new furniture (FINALLY got some chairs for the table, and an entry way table) and I LOVE them! Post to follow about that, and the best part of all?
Michael and I had a Valentine's date! Some dear friends offered to babysit, and Mike and I went to a new restaurant for dinner. It was so nice to be out together. Just the two of us. 
Hope everyone has a beautiful day filled with love.

Tommy made his dad a Valentine's Day card, only to pick all the stickers off before handing it over!

Even Jake got a pancake!

And the balloons? A HUGE hit! Literally!
Have a great week everyone. ( :

Thursday, February 12, 2015

Valentine's Day Concert.... Tommy Takes the Stage!

Photo courtesy of Suzi McGuffin

Every year Michael does a public concert for Valentine's Day, and it's the best! It's outside, and people bring blankets, lawn chairs, candles, and a picnic dinner with Valentine's Day treats and lots of wine. It's the perfect place to bring family or a date and this year we decided to bring Tommy to see his dad perform for the very first time! We really didn't know how he would react, but there he was staring up at his dad and clapping with a huge smile. 
During the second song (Unforgettable) Michael asked Tommy if he would like to come up on stage, and without hesitation he ran up in front of a thousand people to be with his dad. People applauded when he stepped onto that stage, and so he returned the applause, which of course added to the cute factor along with a huge,"Awwwwwww," from the audience. He seemed to feel at home on that stage..... too at home, because before we knew it he was walking around going up to the musicians who were still trying to play. I ran up to grab him and made a quick exit backstage where a tantrum ensued and the screaming was louder than his father singing. I know this because everyone told me! He just couldn't understand why he couldn't be onstage. Probably not a good idea to bring him up so soon, because the rest of the two hours it's all he wanted to do, but it was a fun moment, and a memory we will never forget!

What are you doing for Valentine's Day? Michael and I are having dinner at a new restaurant we haven't been to, and I'm so excited. Mostly to be out on a date with my favorite guy! Other than that, I'll be making a Valentine's Day breakfast. Heart shaped pancakes are on the list.
Wishing everyone a Happy Valentine's Day filled with LOVE.

Photo courtesy of Bobby Brennan
Photo courtesy of Maxine Earhart

Tuesday, February 3, 2015

Valentine's Day Photoshoot

Valentine's Day is a very special day in the Andrew household. It's the day Michael asked me to marry him, and February 14th was also our babies original due date, so it would only be fitting that Tommy's 1st photo shoot would be a Valentine's Day shoot!
I'm not gonna lie, I was a bit nervous. I just didn't know how he would handle himself, but Sydney from Sydney Marie Photography assured me he would be adorable so I thought why not. Lets do this!

Sydney immediately made Tommy feel comfortable, which of course put ME at ease. She has a sweet, calmness about her that is ideal for children, and she had props! Props! I mean..... what toddler doesn't like props right? So, the kid was excited, and Sydney started snapping away. After what felt like 10 minutes max, she said,"Okay, I think I've got what I need. I thought....What? Really? Are you sure? Then Sydney asked me if I wanted to jump in for a few shots, and I was hesitant (you know, not too confident with how I was looking ) but I did, and we were off!

That night, Sydney sent me three shots, and I was thrilled! They were beautiful!!!! One was better than the next.
 I'm making Valentine's Day cards for family members and the only problem? I can't choose just one! Check out more of Tommy's Valentine's Day shoot at Sydney Marie Photography and help me decide.
If you are in the Orlando Area, Sydney is currently having a Valentines Day special. For just $40. you can do a 1/2 hour session with Sydney and believe me, that's a STEAL, and the special runs through February 15th! Sydney also does head shots, Business shots, family shots, senior shots, you name it.
Check out her sight HERE and give her a call!
or email

And those few mommy/Tommy shots I told you about? Check them out! I LOVE them so much and I will cherish these shots with my little Tommy forever.....
Thank you Sydney!

Friday, January 30, 2015

Friday & My Album Cover!

 My album cover?! Really? Come on!
After much hesitation, I posted this "Selfie" on Facebook yesterday. Why hesitation you ask?  I don't thoughts went something like this. "What am I, sixteen with this selfie post!? Or....... "Will people think I'm just vain?" Anyway, after putting WAY TOO MUCH thought into it, I posted it because from a photography standpoint, I thought it was a good photo. The response I received? Overwhelming! People were asking me who the photographer was, which totally made my day! Well...... that and people telling me it was beautiful which will never get old for my 42 year old ego! The funny thing is, this picture was really just a fluke. The photography planets just seemed to align that day. Here is how it went down.

It was one of those days when I had time for a quick shower, but not makeup thanks to Little Lord Fauntleroy" AKA Tommy,  so I skipped the eye makeup altogether except for a little mascara which I NEVER do, and just put on BRIGHT lipstick. Mac Viva Glam to be exact! So, there I am sitting with my little buddy on the couch, the sun shining brightly through the window and we began to take selfies, because Tommy loves a good selfie of himself! We took the first picture, (him making faces of course) and I immediately noticed the forgiveness of that warm overexposed sunlight. Forgiveness on my wrinkles that is!

I've learned from my husband, who is a GREAT photographer (add that to the annoying list of things he does well) that overcast days are best for photography, but that bright sunshine became natures photoshop, and I just couldn't pass the opportunity up! So what did I do? Why I did what any loving mother would do. I shoved Tommy out of the shot which threw us both back to a laying position on the couch and while he squirmed on my lap I quickly took the shot, and BAM my album cover was born!
In my opiniion,  here is what makes THIS photo a great photo.

1. Overexposed lighting is very forgiving on wrinkles and imperfections. Take note anyone over 35! There are many photo filters that will give the same effect.
2. Contrast. The lightness of my hair against the darkness of the sofa and black shirt really makes this photo pop, as well as the contrast of my lips against my skin. The same will be true of a brunette against a bright white background.
3. Natural! Aside from that bright lipstick, this photo is very natural. Makeup is important, but you don't want to be too made up. Let the real YOU shine through.
4. Composition. From the angle of the face, to the texture of my hair laying just so, to the contrast of the light and dark is what makes up the composition of the photo, and EVERYONE has a flattering angle. Find it!

Because this photo was taken in a laying position, I had to rotate it to make it face front. Who would have known right?

Simple as that. I have a pretty expensive Canon, but this photo was taken with my iphone. Photography is not about the camera. A good camera will NOT make you a photographer. It's a combination of so many things. Look at photographs that you love and really study what makes them so appealing to your eye. Be creative and practice, practice, practice!
Have a great weekend everyone, and take a selfie, or two or three!

Friday, January 23, 2015

This Guy + LINKS

Happy Friday everyone!
What are your plans for the weekend? We're supposed to get some cooler weather here in the sunshine state, and I can't wait. Cooler meaning mid sixties which equals perfection as far as weather goes. I know a lot of the country is FREEZING so I just need to rub that in a little bit. ( :
I'lll be with THIS guy who is getting bigger by the minute. Michael and I were just discussing the other day how overnight he seems to have gone from baby to little boy. Currently his fav past time is jumping on the bed and saying,"I did it!" Pretty much after EVERYTHING he does. Michael says he speaks in exclamation points and he's right. Every word is loud and full of excitement. Hopefully he can manage to keep this enthusiasm throughout his lifetime. 
Wishing everyone a peaceful weekend. Check out these links from around the web.....

8 Questions to ask yourself to help you declutter.

+ I might have to treat myself to this oversized scarf to stay toasty this winter.

+ I've made this winter soup twice this month and it's a BIG hit with both Michael AND Tommy.

+ Currently reading this book per Oprah's request

+ In case you missed the 2015 Oscar Nominees