This Is Me

Jessie Bee
I am a seeker of God, a help-meet to my husband and a mother to my 3 children. I love hot lattes, good books, cold weather and anything that inspires me to be creative. I desire simplicity and authenticity, but often have to remind myself to seek those .
View my complete profile
Powered by Blogger.

My Friends:

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Holiday Spending.

A couple days ago I went to the mall and I thought of two things...

First thing:  we should consider rationing out the holidays by last name.  Or neighborhood.  Or even Pepsi fans vs Coke fans.  This way we will average out the number of people at the mall in any given month.  We were crazy to think everyone in America should celebrate Christmas in December.

Second thing:  the holidays are not an excuse to spend money.  Sure, we like to give gifts, but I'm going to implore you all to only spend money you actually have.  Shopping can be such an emotional rush, but there is always always regret on the flip side if you let the holiday feel-goods determine your spending limit.  Go into the holidays with a, a REAL budget.   Not a spending limit but an actual budget.
Write down all the names of the people you buy gifts for (don't forget to include individuals like postal workers, teachers, neighbors, etc, if you generally gift these people).  Then figure out your limit for each person, add all the prices up, and make sure it's a figure you afford because its money you actually have.  If not, tweak your budget.  Please please please do not justify credit card spending with your need to supply presents to your friends and family.  Essentially, you are giving away a borrowed item with the expectation to pay for it in the future.  That's not what the holidays should ever turn into.

Oh, I'm not saying this from a high horse either.  I've been there.  In fact, one Black Friday a few years ago I applied for a store credit card at one of the stores I stopped at because I didn't have enough money on my other credit cards to buy anything.  (Yes, that was extremely humbling to type.)  I can guarantee I didn't need any of the stuff I purchased on that card.  In fact, I don't even remember what I bought.  And no doubt I paid much more than the crazy Black Friday steal-of-a-price for it when interest was tagged on over the next several months.  How foolish.

I'm not saying it is wrong to buy things, but it is unwise to buy them if you don't have the money in your bank account to pay for them.  So in short, please just be prepared with a battle plan for your shopping over the next month so regret is limited and you're not a slave to your credit card.

Thursday, October 11, 2012

Another catch-up post...

The other night my husband nonchalantly let me know that it's been awhile since I wrote a good blog post.

"Eh hem...a good blog post??"
"No, I mean a blog post.  Just a blog post.  They're all good."  

My thoughts exactly.  =)  Only kidding.  I know I'm not stellar at blogging.  Case in point:  the dates between my last post and this one.  Once again I'm left playing catch-up.


Ingredients used were pumpkin puree, vanilla yogurt, sugar and pumpkin pie spice.
I strained about a cup and a half of yogurt, mixed it with a cup of pumpkin puree, 1/4 cup sugar and a generous shaking of pumpkin pie spice.  Yummy!!!

2. Shabu-shabu = drool.  Stuart and I had an hour to ourselves one evening and found this whole in the wall place that advertised itself as Japanese fondue.  And yes, it's mighty similar to the concept of fondue, only a thousand times more satisfying.

Here is the plate of veggies and udon noodles, the two sauces (ponzu and satay) and my personal pot of spicy soup broth.  We were also served meat and rice.  The first steps involve cooking 2/3 of your meat and veggies, pulling them out and enjoying them with the sauces and rice.

The last step is when you put in the remaining veggies and your noodles into the broth and let it cook,
 then that gets poured into a bowl where you enjoy it as soup.  Oy, my mouth is watering right now.
 3. Museum Day (haha)
Not much to say about museum day, except for free Krispy Kremes and this hilarious mascot.  Aside from him being the least energetic mascot I've ever encountered (but I' not was SO HOT), the kids kept tapping me and whispering, "Mommy, we can see his NECK."   Sure enough, from the kids vantage point, you could easily see the guys scruffy neck and chin.  So much for convincing the kids they got to meet a real dinosaur.  

It has been ridiculously hot the past several weeks so baking is at a slow crawl.  But I did manage to bake these little guys for a silent auction.  Fun fun!
 5. Pinterest Fun!

I sent my sweet little nieces a surprise package.  Once they opened the box, their instructions were to pop one of each color balloon and enjoy their loot.  My sister was really thoughtful and face-timed us on the iphones so we actually got to see them open the goodies. It was a lot of fun, and because it was mostly stickers and virtually weightless balloons, the box was super cheap to send!  Thanks pinterest!

Aside from navigating the home schooling world, that's what I've been up to lately.

 (There you go Honey.)  =)


Thursday, September 13, 2012

Last few weeks in pictures..

Life is flying by right now.  Here are a couple pics to update what I've been up to:

Threw a "Mustache Bash" Adoption Shower for a friend adopting THREE BOYS.  One of her favorite desserts is vanilla cupcakes with chocolate icing.  =)

Iced Coffee - YUM!

Enjoying the first day of school!

My lovely sis treated me to my first Pumpkin Spice Latte of the season!

Got this marvelous idea from a friend - chocolate chip cookie dough put into cupcake batter!

Cupcakes disguised themselves as Spiderman.  =)

I found a new path while riding my bike.  It was so pretty and completely empty.

Aaannnnd......I got a little behind in laundry.  Don't judge.
Hope you are all enjoying your September!

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

On the other hand...

Almost two weeks ago I blogged about the mean words a completely random stranger said to me.  I won't lie, they hurt.  But I also knew the person didn't know me and probably had plenty more issues of her own.

Jump to today when I went to a doctors appointment.  The doctor started asking me some basic questions, starting with, "What do you do for work?"  I answered simply: "I'm a mom."  To most people, it's a rather generic answer that potentially implies I'm uneducated and socially unproductive.  However, this doctor stopped punching buttons into the computer and looked up at me.  "That's wonderful!" he said.  I smiled, surprised by his response.

He continued: "How many children?  1...2...?"
"Three," I said.
"Ah, so you're a busy mom."

There it was.  That's the response that ALWAYS comes.  Three kids?  Wow, you must be busy.  No longer are moms with more than 1.2 children blessed; we are now busy.  Well, I did have one OB/GYN who celebrated my third pregnancy and kept reminding me how much fun my dinner tables would be.  That has always stuck with me.

But then the doctor today said it again...."How wonderful!  Will you be having any more children?"

I rarely, if ever, get this question.  Most people consider 3 to be a large family; that only ladies in denim jumpers would consider more.  So they don't ask.

When I told him that we were currently in the process of adopting, his praises continued.  "You sound like such a wonderful mom!  That's what we need....more great mothers and fathers."

By this time I was beaming.  I've rarely ever been praised by strangers for having children and choosing to be a stay-at-home mom.  But he was genuinely praising my position, and I was hugely touched.

So, to all you mommies out there:  YOU'RE WONDERFUL!  =)

Mango Smoothie

My whole summer has been a competition:  me vs the heat.  I'm a wimp when it comes to hot weather, and so instead of surrendering, I fought back.  I dragged in our wimpy ol' one room air conditioner (which literally only cools about 1 foot in front of the system), turned all the fans on to HIGH, visited my mom's pool nearly every afternoon aaaaand......

....made these:

My kids know it as mango ice cream (its the consistency of frozen yogurt).  Want to know the recipe??  You sure?  It's really complex.  And time consuming.  Totally worth it, though.

Got your pen ready?  Okay, here goes:


Start with some mango (frozen is preferred).
Grab some plain yogurt (we use Fage).

Dump those into a blender, in equal parts.  

Blend till smooth.  Pour into glasses.  

Pat yourself on the back for a job well done and consume...but not too much.  It's totally loaded with artificial sugars, preservatives, and fake stuff.  ;)  Only kidding.   


Friday, August 10, 2012


"It must be such a downer to look in the mirror every day."  That's the comment I received from a stranger while I was out on a walk today.  

Truthfully, I have no idea what causes people to be so mean to others, especially to a complete stranger.  However, it was a good reminder about the power of words, and I will use this as motivation to do the opposite - to compliment a complete stranger.

I don't know who all reads my blog at any given time, but if you read this, could you try doing the same?  Just one compliment this week to someone you don't know.  To me, that is the sweetest revenge.  =)

Monday, July 30, 2012

All Tangled Up: a Rapunzel party

Yesterday my niece turned 4 years old.  She is one of the most hilarious and sweetest little girls I've ever met....and she absolutely adores Rapunzel.  So what made more sense than to throw her a Tangled-theme birthday party?  When my sister mentioned the idea, we both hit the internet and started brainstorming ideas (my sister found most of them).  Here is the party in pictures:

the decorations:
I know it's hard to tell, but this painting is HAND DONE by my talented sister.   

This is another painting she did, along with a homemade yarn lantern.  So cute!

Rapunzel's hair.  We also did a brown braid and paired it with some (paper) scissors and had that hanging out on the bathroom counter.   =)

Another glimpse of Jenny's painting, along with the streamers she made.

And of course there had to be color-coordinating flowers!

What Tangled party would be complete without Rapunzel herself?  My niece spent most of her party dancing and singing with her friends and her favorite princess!  Rapunzel also practiced her painting skills on the cheeks of all the party guests.   She was awesome!

the food:
The obligatory veggies.  Something has to be healthy, right?

We kept it simple for the kids:  premade pb&j and chips.  

Jello adorned with clementine boats, perfect for lantern-watching.

We put some of the food in cast iron pans.  =)  The adults were fed rustic rolls, cold cuts and cheese with an array of spreads: chipotle ranch, pesto and honey mustard.  We also did some caprese skewers for munching on.

For drinks my sister served strawberry lemonade and iced tea.  Yummy!

the cake:
A friend of mine did a killer creative Rapunzel tower and I was determined to do one also.  

I printed out a mini version of Flynn Rider's "Wanted" poster - I thought it added a nice touch.

Another view.

The waterfall. 

By the end of the party, my niece was exhausted.  Her mommy persuaded her to take a "5 minute break" which turned into an hour-long nap.   

My guess is the party was a smashing success!

Thursday, July 26, 2012

Smoothies and Pinterest

I recently taught my two older kids how to work our blender, which has turned smoothie-making into a four or five-times-a-day occurrence.  That's actually fine with me because they put healthy things like frozen berries and greek yogurt into them.  Or, at least I thought they were using the greek yogurt.  It finally occurred to me that all the yogurt was still sitting in our fridge, untouched, so I asked my daughter which yogurt she was using.  She showed me...

I really need to teach her to read better.  But at least it was the European-style sour cream...the kind that uses milk as its only ingredient.  But still, ewww.

And then there was my son's smoothie.  Our recent peanut butter purchase suggested using the peanut butter in your smoothie, so my son insisted on listening.  He said it tasted really good so I suggested he write down the ingredients so he'll remember how to make it in the future:

Cantaloupe??  Gag!  But he was proud of it so of course I praised his...uhhh....creativity, and that was all the encouragement he needed to make another one an hour later.

Oh, and I finally pintered  pinterested  made something from pinterest!  Something tells me we could use a few more coloring books but, thanks to Target's school sale, we have plenty of crayons. =)

Sure, judge me for making the easiest thing I could find, but it's done and the kids totally love it.  Now they can color while they drink their sour cream and cantaloupe smoothies.  Yum.

Sunday, July 22, 2012


What do you get when you mix weddings slash sickness slash adoption work slash summer?

Answer: no blog posts.

The last few weeks have been spent watching my kids grow up.  I am now the proud parent of TWO swimmers.  Because of my fear of water, this is especially important to me.  My mom, husband and I have really made it a point to get the kids in the water as much as possible this summer, and we're now reaping the rewards.  Woohoo!

I also got to see my nieces for an entire week, while they were down here for my sister's wedding:
My daughter and niece standing over the air conditioning vent.  =)  

Janoah driving off in Papa's jeep.
 I also had the opportunity to spend time with a friend I've known nearly all my life.  We met when I was 5 (and she was 4) and lived only 7 houses apart.  We went to the same school and spent all of our weekends together.  Here is a picture of us when we were younger:

And now....

Here is a picture of my two girls (ages 4 and 5) hanging out with her 4 year old (sorry, the lighting is terrible).  This was so surreal to me...

That's what I've been up to.  How's your summer going?

Sunday, June 24, 2012

On Being a Parent

Without a doubt, some of the best parts of being a parent are...

1. Kid Talk.

 "Mommy, this marker is Grandma's.  When we see her again, I'm afraid we'll have to give it to her." 

2. Homemade cards.

3. Early morning cuddles.

The end.  =)

Thursday, June 21, 2012

Better than TOMS?

When Stuart and I got married, my husband wore neither jeans nor flip flops.  As in, he didn't even own either.  And we live in Southern California!  Since I am a BIG fan of a man in jeans and flip flops, I quickly remedied the problem. =)  We jumped on the Rainbow sandals wagon because they were sturdy and comfy.  When we received a tax refund this year, I figured it'd be a good time to update my husbands flip flop wear. 

While googling for deals on Rainbows, I somehow stumbled across the website for Sole Rebels.  Sole Rebels is a shoe company based in Ethiopia.  They use sustainable, fair trade materials to make their shoes and pay their employees 3 times the industry average for similar work (4 times the minimum wage requirement).  That's crazy insane, and it's only going to foster pride in the community, as well as give the workers the ability to give their children a great education and the chance to get even better jobs.  I'm quite familiar with a different "socially aware" shoe company that appears to do a lot of social good on the surface but, as the proverb would say, merely "give a man a fish" (when you buy one for yourself).  I don't intend to judge their charity model; they've given away more shoes than I have.  However, one of the biggest gifts we can give poor economies is not money or food or shoes, but the ability to thrive via themselves.  Dependence on outside aid doesn't foster growth, it just encourages further dependence.  Sole Rebels is a shoe company that doesn't give men fish, but rather teaches fishing - and pays the fisherman quite well.  Visit their website here to read more about the benefits of their business model.  

Needless to say, I ordered a pair of flip flops for both of us and my husband's instant response to putting them on was  "YOU HAVE TO BLOG ABOUT THESE."  They are the MOST comfortable flip flops he's ever tried on, and they didn't require getting wet in an effort to help conform to his feet (true story).  They are baby-bottom soft and fit quite well (they have a nifty shoe-fitting print-out on their site).  I also ordered a pair of flats, which I LOVE.

Obviously for people on a budget (like us) this is a big splurge.  But trust me - they are totally worth it!  And they come with the added satisfaction of knowing you are supporting a fantastic company.

My husband and I wearing our Sole Rebels.  :)

Disclaimer:  no, I'm not getting paid to say any of this.

Tuesday, June 12, 2012


This past weekend our family went camping.  I love camping.  We went quite a bit while growing up and I completely "get it" now because, while I drank coffee and talked with adults, the kids did this...

...and this...

...and they don't fight, complain that they're bored, or make messes that I need to worry about.  

The kids also had a chance to ride horses for a bit:

....and watch the daddies dig this guy out of a gopher hole and grab him with their bare hands.  

On our last camping trip, the kids found a baby rattlesnake, which required instant death.  I think the dads liked being able to play with this one for a bit.

A friend of ours also found this little guy:

and at one point, one of my kids grabbed my phone and took some pictures.  
Not exactly sure who the culprit was, but I found a clue...

I consider it a fantastic deal to sleep on the ground in exchange for no fighting and easy bedtimes,  
plus we get to make a few memories at the same time.
Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...
Blog Design by Delicious Design Studio