Thank you for stopping by! As I rarely have time to update this blog anymore, please come visit me at my new photoblog, Cari Berry Photography where I'll blog the occassional Beauty and the little Beast story, as well as post sneak peeks and stories from all my photo sessions. I try to give return blog love to all visitors over there, and hope to start giveaways there in the very near future!

For visitors to this blog, please accept my apologies, but I've had to turn on captcha because of the insane amount of spam comments I've been getting. Dontcha hate it when one bad apple ruins it for everyone else??!! ;)

Thursday, April 30, 2009

Casualties of Naptime War

Naptime for the little Beast is always a struggle. Some days he falls asleep after a short round of whining and resistance. Other days, we fight it out for hours -with me usually ending up the loser. I just don't have the skills or energy to counter and defeat the litte Beast's guerilla tactics. I "lock" him in his room, he screams, kicks the walls and door, and totally destroys his bedroom. Here are some photos to illustrate just how outmatched I am in this battle:

Yes, he's crying. Because he got scolded. But you'll stop feeling sorry for him by the end of this post, I promise...

Had enough?! Me too, but the little Beast is not done yet!

Just look at that smug little smirk on his face! He knows he's winning!

Dude. You're three feet tall. How did you manage to mess up the curtains?!?!

And last but not least - The Great Diaper Disaster:

(Check out the full story of this photo - and my favorite naptime mess EVER - at this previous post.)

Anyway, these are just the battles I have photos of. I could bore you for hours with my naptime war stories, like the time the little Beast took off his own dirty diaper and used its contents to redecorate his bedroom. Ugh! Lately he's been escalating his offensive and I think it's probably about time I waved the white flag of surrender. But, boy, does it ever rankle being bested by a two year old! Grrrr...

PhotoStory Friday
Hosted by Cecily and MamaGeek

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

i Heart Faces - What The %@*#?! Wednesday

Wait, what the %@*# day is it?! Wednesday? Crap. I totally missed this week's i Heart Faces contest. Shoot. It was reflection week, and I had this photo set aside from our trip to the beach a couple weeks ago. It's Beauty's first encounter with sand and sea...

Monday, April 27, 2009

I'm {NOT} Back & Taking Care of Business

Hello again blogosphere!!! Oh, how I missed you. I'm back just in time for Not Me! Monday so let's get started...

I am NOT super neurotic and paranoid about being home alone at night. That is NOT the reason I've kept it quiet that I've been living alone with the kids for the past 5 months. My husband has NOT actually been away since December at a training academy for his new job as an air traffic controller.

My recent blog refriction was NOT a last-ditch attempt to catch up on household chores (wash the car, make room in the closet, bathe the dirty kids, etc) in order to convince my husband that I spent our five months apart responsibly caring for our children and home. I did NOT actually spend most of his time away parked on my fat butt in front of the computer blogging.

I am NOT secretly kind of sad that hubby is coming home in a few days because I am NOT disappointed that I'll have to spend my evenings with a flesh-and-blood person instead of with you, my pretend Internet friend.

I will NOT be having a huge giveaway in a few days to celebrate my husband's homecoming, and inside will NOT actually be celebrating mostly because I'll finally have some much-needed help with laundry, dishes, bathtime and bedtime! No, really honey, I missed your cover-hogging and snoring, and my excitement to have you home is all about you and NOT just about having someone to share the load with!__________________________________________________________________________________________
Taking care of business in my real life made me realize I need to do a little blog housekeeping too. First, I've been meaning to post the pictures of all the items I donated on your behalf to Operation Homefront. You left me 161 comments, and here are the 161 items sent in care packages to our hardworking soldiers.

Also, I have been collecting (hoarding) awards for the last couple of months and I think it's about time I bestowed some! First let me say how grateful I am that so many of you visit and comment on my blog regularly. I am thrilled that anyone reads it, let alone likes it! Thank you! Please let me take a minute to recognize my most loyal commenters and active followers.

I hereby bequeath this Super Follower award to these bloggers for following me, but also for their frequent comments and exceptional support of Two Under Two. Whew! Thank you! (You can right click the award and save to your computer if you'd like to post it on your own blog.)
Stefanie of Lexie Loo & Dylan Too
Alicia of More Than Words
Alicia of My Three Bs and Me
Kameron of A Wrinkle in Time
Alexia of The Mommy Rambles
Mighty M
Christina of Rant-Rave-Roll
Sally of Sally’s World
Heather at Sugar and Spice Mostly Nice
Susie of Susie’s Homemade
Kelly of Two Kids, A Minivan and A Lot of Love
Brooke at Dinkypops No More
Shelli at I'm Too Busy To Blink And I Need A Pedicure
Courtney and the Boys
Keri at Life of Logan
Megan of Infertile Myrtle
Tim of Fort Thompson


Tim of Fort Thompson and Heather of But I Don't Want To Be A Cowboy awarded me with this I'm A Fan Of Your Site award, (what a coincidence, I'm a fan of their sites too!) so I'm paying it forward to a few of my favorite blogs. If you're listed anywhere in either of my sidebars, I'm a huge fan of your site! (Email me at for the award's HTML code so you can post it in your sidebar - or just right click and save it to your computer!)

I also received this Sisterhood Award from Brenda Lea of The Purple Lady's Art and Life. (Thanks Brenda Lea!) I'm passing it on to some "sisters" in the bloggy world that inspire me, impress me, and entertain me. These women also deserve my Loyal Followers award above, so go ahead girls, take it!(Right click the image to save it to your computer, then upload it to your own blog if you'd like!)
Lolli of Life is Sweet
Melinda of Bloggin it from the Burbs
Heather at But I Don't Want To Be A Cowboy
Maryanne at Thrifty Craft Mama
Heather at Adventures of Aidanpod
Rachel of Once Upon A Miracle
Elaine at Matters of the Heart
Rhiann at Through the Garden Gates
(my real-life BFF)
Heather at Lack Therof (my real-life sister who just joined the bloggy world a few days ago! Please stop by and welcome her.)

Most recently, sweet Maryanne of Thrifty Craft Mama gave me the “Premio Dardos” award for "bloggers who distinguish themselves for showing cultural values, ethics, great and fun writing skills, as well as individual values, through their creative writing." This is the second award Maryanne has given me, and she is both a loyal follower and frequent commenter on my blog, so I want to take a moment to give her a special shoutout! Thank you so much MaryAnne. You've been with me since the beginning, and I really appreciate you!

Thrifty Craft Mama is a blog focused on affordable craft and activity ideas for children. Maryanne is a creative and fantastic mommy of two (soon to be three!!!) with awesomely inspiring ideas that you absolutely MUST try with your own kids. If you haven't already, stop by and say hi, and pick up some tips for new and fun ways to connect with your kids.

That about covers it for housekeeping. Thanks for putting up with it, and with my recent blog refriction. Please be aware that Heather at Adventures of Aidanpod is doing some behind the scenes housekeeping - actually a full remodel! - of my blog. There is going to be a new look - and new title here at Two Under Two. Whew! very soon! So stay tuned for that!

Monday, April 20, 2009

On Refriction

When my cousin Scott was about 4 years old, he got into trouble for crossing the street to visit the neighbor girl without permission. As punishment, his parents put him on restriction from playing with the neighbors for the rest of the day. A little while after the law was laid down, his neighborhood playmate came outside and yelled across the road for him to come over and play. He hollered back:

"I can't, I'm on refriction."

"I don't know what it is, but I'm on it!"

It's a classic story in our family, and it makes me laugh everytime I remember it. Scott was - and is - a funny guy. (Luckily, his fashion sense has improved since childhood):

What is my point? you ask.

Well, I am punishing myself with a temporary blog "refriction" for the next few days, so that I can get a handle on my real-life responsibilities. Oh, I'll still log on now and then to respond to your comments and visit my followers, but there will be no What the @%*#?! Wednesday or Photostory Friday this week.

While I'm away, feel free to browse my Best of Beauty and the little Beast collection, and of course, enter my A Work of Heart Giveaway for a chance - or five - to win a gorgeous piece of jewelry!

Take care and I'll see you around the blogosphere very soon!

A Work Of Heart Jewelry Giveaway

My real-life BFF Gina recently opened her own Etsy shop called A Work of Heart.

Gina makes the most amazing hand-beaded and wire-wrapped jewelry; it's really unique stuff! She works with many materials but especially loves metal and freshwater pearls. She also likes to recycle old jewelry by incorporating it into her new works.

And she and her preschooler make jewelry for little ones that she sells on her site too!

Gina even customizes one-of-a-kind jewelry just for her clients. Here's what she has to say about customized jewelry at her website:

"Please let me know if there is a piece of jewelry that you like but would like in another color or if you would like for me to create something new as a gift. I can also do larger quantities of items for events. For example, if you are looking for just the right earring for a group that is going to be in your wedding, with your guidance, I can craft pieces that are as unique as your friends."

Now for the good news! My generous friend is giving away a piece of jewelry from her collection (YOUR CHOICE) up to $35.00 in value. All you have to do to enter is:

* Visit A Work of Heart at Etsy and look around. Come back here and leave a comment on this post telling me which piece of Gina's jewelry is your favorite. You MUST do this step to qualify.

You can earn extra entries by doing any or all of the following (Be sure to leave SEPARATE comments for each step you take since that counts as your entry):

1. Follow my blog. (Worth 1 extra entry)
2. Join my BlogFrog Community in my sidebar. (Worth 2 extra entries)
3. Blog about this contest with a link back here (Worth 2 extra entries)
4. Buy something from A Work of Heart (Worth 5 extra entries!!!)

Contest will end Saturday, May 2nd at midnight. Winner will be selected randomly by the widget. Please be sure I can contact you via email or blog or I will have to choose another winner. Thanks and good luck!

I Heart {My} Faces

This week's challenge at i Heart Faces is the hardest yet: Self-Portrait. Here are the rules:

" must take the photo and you must be holding the camera when you take it (you can’t use a tripod or anything else to hold the camera for you.)"

My adult entry, ("show us your face…and your face ONLY") is almost kid-free, except for the little Beast's arms and knee growing out of my head in the background. Bonus points I think for posting a photo of me when I'd just woken up - the light was just so lovely that morning (thank goodness for naturally flat hair and photo editing tools that helped me get rid of undereye circles!).

My kids entry is Beauty and me (yes, she's eating my lens cap) reflected in Ms. Smartypants' sunglasses. I looked over to tell her something and caught a glimpse of myself in her shades. I instantly thought, "i Heart Faces!!!!" This shot was great in theory, but leaves a bit to be desired upon execution. I wish I'd moved my mom and our picnic so they weren't reflected in the other sunglass lens. I wish I hadn't had to soften and clone out all the background distractions. Any other tips for how I might've improved it?

Sunday, April 19, 2009

Funny Girl

We spent the day at the beach yesterday with our 6-year old cousin, Ms. Smartypants. She said to me about the little Beast:

"He is getting so big. He comes up past my hip now. I think he comes all the way to my dominoes."

*scratching my head* Hmmmm... What in the world does she mean?




Ahhhh.... abdominals.

Ha, ha, ha, ha. What a character!

Mamarrazzi Fave Things Swap

Thursday, April 16, 2009

Black Eye.

You Should See The Other Guy.

He Ran Into A Door. Really.

Got Milk?

The other day while driving in the car with his grandma, the little Beast spotted some cows standing in a muddy, flooded field, which led to an interesting conversation I'd love to share with you.

The little Beast said: "Those cows is standing in milk, gramma."

Grandma replied: "No, that's mud buddy. Cows don't stand in milk, they make it."

Beast: confused silence.

Grandma: "Do you know where milk comes from?"

Beast: "From my frigerator."

Grandma: "Yes, but where does mommy get the milk to put in the refrigerator?"

Beast: "From store!"

Grandma: "But where does the store get the milk?"

Beast: Thinks for a moment: "I don't know!"

Grandma: "From those cows on the farm!"

Beast: "Ooooo-oh."

Grandma: "And where does Beauty get her milk?"

Beast: "From mom's shirt!!"

Which reminds me of another story. When the little Beast was a baby, his then 4-year old cousin Ms. Smartypants, was fascinated with the concept of breastfeeding. She gave it a lot of thought. One day she announced to the family that she knew why women had two breasts:

One side for hot milk, and the other side for cold!

I love the way their cute little brains work. What are some of the funny things your kids have said?

PhotoStory Friday
Hosted by Cecily and MamaGeek

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

What the %@*#?! Wednesday, Week 8!

Okay, so Spring is here which means warmer weather, flowers in bloom, and cleaning house, right?!

Not-so-much here. This morning, there was snow on the ground. Again. Ugh.

And the flowers are still middle-of-winter dead.

And as for Spring Cleaning: what would be the point? Because I live with the messiest human being, or perhaps even the messiest mammal, on Earth.
What the %@*#?!

Freshly unfolded laundry

Contents of my "to be filed" box

The little Beast's book collection, normally kept on a shelf

Previously unopened mail

Self-explanatory, I hope

And more fun with stamps and baby powder

Since I can't get any cleaning done, I'm giving away a box of goodies to help you get your cleaning done instead (includes spring washcloths and dish scrubber, fabric softener, dish soap, stain remover, dust cloths, air freshener and more!) To win, simply leave a comment on this post telling me you want them.

For extra entries, do one or all of the following (worth one entry each). Be sure to leave a separate comment for each thing you have done because that comment counts as your entry.

1. Follow my blog.
2. Be or become a member of my BlogFrog community (see lefthand sidebar).
3. Blog about this contest with a link back here.
4. Tweet and/or Facebook this contest, leaving the url in comments.

Contest ends at midnight on Saturday, April 18th. Winner will be chosen at random by, and announced on Sunday (when my new giveaway begins!). Thanks for participating!

Monday, April 13, 2009

I Heart {Easter} Faces - Amateur Week

Well, because my kids are little stinkers, and refused to cooperate both times I tried taking Easter portraits, I had a hard time finding anything worth entering this week. Fortunately, my mom managed to coax a smile out of Beauty in her Easter outfit and I snapped this one decent shot. You can view it bigger by clicking here.

I'm more a novice than an amateur, but I am learning so much each week at i Heart Faces! I would love any advice or feedback you could offer to help me improve my photos! Thanks for stopping by.

1/160 sec
ISO 400
Sony Cybershot DSCH50 (point-n-shoot)
Edited in Picnik