JJ Ghatt's Old Stuff

Here are the articles I've written in the past

Viral: We love This Parapalegic’s Crude but Cute Pregnancy Announcement

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Ok this might be considered a bit on the crude side but hey, it’s creative.

Todd Krieg and his new fiancé Amanda Dieson just found out they are expecting a baby in August!


It is a blessing because Todd was involved in a tragic motocross accident which left him paralyzed from the waist down.

Docs told him that not only would he never walk again but that he would never be able to have children.

To celebrate defying the odds, Todd and Amanda solicited the help of photographer Kayla Duffin to capture the great news with a photo shoot.

This photo above went viral after their friend shared it on Reddit.

nice! Congrats!

 

How to Throw an Elegant Budget Neutral DIY Baby Shower

Bellyitch RewindDIY yellow and grey themed baby shower

Last April, I threw a DIY baby shower for my baby sister who is expecting her second child, a baby girl. With a limited budget, I was able put together a pretty fab shower, I think, by being resourceful, and cutting corners but without sacrificing quality and style. It all looked elegant in the end and as if I spent a lot more.

(A couple of my sister’s friends, one who is a p/t event-planner and baker and another who bakes cakes helped me out a bit. My sister’s future mom-in-law did the games and her aunt-in-law helped out as well and provided the venue, her lovely country home)

My sister, like me, is adverse to pink and purple and traditional girly colors. She wanted a shower theme to match the nursery she was decorating for her soon-to-be-born daughter, (and my future Godchild) Aubrey.


Elephants, Chevron Yellow and Grey is the theme. I strayed a little on the Chevron and we had a mix of yellows but it all came together, visually, well, nonetheless, in the end.

Here is how I pulled it off.

Invitations.

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In lieu of expensive invitations, I got downloable printables from Fancy Shmancy Notes shop on Etsy for $15 and $5.00 for Cards asking for a children’s story book instead of a greeting card with any gift purchase.  I purchased a pack of 60 Avery brand customizable Note Cards from Staples office supply store. They come with envelopes and cost just $24. Postage stamps were $30.00. The total cost was $74 for invitations.  That move saved me about $100 in lieu of online-ordered customized invitations.

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Discount, Dollar, Thrift and Bulk Stores Savings

I also saved money by hitting up thrift stores, dollar stores and bulk food stores. The party supply store sold paper and plastic table cloths for $9 each. Instead if those, I schlepped to my local thrift store and picked up 3 linen table cloths for $10 total! I washed and ironed three table cloths I already owned, including a very pretty one with grey and yellow in it that matched the color scheme. Score!

At Costco, a wholesale membership food warehouse, I got a huge bouquet of Daisies for only $10.00. I was able to convert that one bunch into 5 vases of flowers of different sizes and shapes that I set up on various tables at the venue. I also got food that would ordinarily cost more at a regular grocery store much cheaper there.

 For example, a large 1 lb container of mixed greens was $4. A big 34 ounce bag of authentic nacho chips was $4. Two quiche pies were $13. An Alouitte Brie Wheel just $6. A large container of fresh cut fruit was just $10.  A similar size retails for about $30 at my local grocers. I know because I looked it up and did comparison shopping.

At the Dollar Store, nice Misaka brand vases were just $1.00 each.  Paper cuttlery, plates, napkins, cups in the theme colors cost $1.00 each compared to $3.00 to 8.00 at the party supply store. Favor boxes were just 10 for $1 compared to $30 for 50 at the party supply store.  I got some craft items for the favors and cupcake toppers there for $1.00 each as well.

Here is the final haul I set up on my dining room table.

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However, to save money, I used some items I already owned. I had a case of sternos left over from a previous event. I used a serving tray and a lead glass chip and dip tray, another serving tray and glass tea light holders I already owned.

the cake

 We saved money on the venue by hosting it at my sister’s fiancee’s aunt’s house in a rural part of a suburb in Maryland. The host, Aunt Nicho, has a bright and sunny Morning room that also has yellow-colored walls and a large airy and bright glass wall that brought in tons of natural light.

The cost of the main cake was offset because another family member donated the cost of the materials and my sister’s dear friend baked it. She has a p/t professional cake baking business and offered the labor for free as a gift to the mom-to-be.

FREE Printables

water bottle printables

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Google printables and you’ll find a ton of free and paid ones as well. I was fortunate to find a free one online with the same color scheme as ours.  There were water bottle labels, a candy station sign, and other printable items. When I printed out the printables, they came out darker yellow than on the computer screen, but it worked out because the color complemented well with the table cloth and coincidentally was the same shade of yellow on the the cake! Perfect!

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I got the gumballs, sixlets and lollipop sticks in the color theme at the party supply store  to set up a candy station. (We used the candy display jugs owned by friend who has the P/T event planning biz too) I also picked up steamer strays and yellow serving trays for a reasonable price there too.

I later discovered that Walmart and Target are now in the business of offering specialized modern party supplies. All of the supplies for a candy station, which I set up and is very popular, cost between 25-50% less at these big box stores compared to the party supply store.

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Aunt Nicho had these great decorative juice jugs that we used to hold mimosas and non-alcoholic OJ

mimosa and juice

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A friend of my sis, Lynee, who is an amazing baker and the one with the p/t event planning company, gifted homemade strawberry and lemon butter cream frosting cupcakes. They were amazingly good! Yum!

lemon cupcakes

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 I got these cupcake toppers for free online HERE. I used the $1 box of toothpicks I got from the Dollar Tree to tape them to the pack of the toppers.

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Here is a serving tray I already owned, a wedding gift from decades ago, that I used to serve the brie and crackers.

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Again, I saved costs with glass tea holders I had from a previous event and a chip and dip tray I owned since my wedding. The tea lights were just $1 for a dozen at the dollar store.

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Aunt Nicho created a very neat tiered diaper cake we used for decoration as well.

We used grey and yellow party favor boxes I got from Dollar Tree at $1 for 10. We filled them with candy from a big bag of Lifesavers I picked up at Target that was $8.00 on sale!

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The roll of tulle and pre-cut Tulle circles are just $1.00 as well at Dollar Tree.

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I printed out maternity portraits from my sister’s shoot using my inkjet printer I reviewed here. It looked like professional quality. I used matte photo paper I got from Target.  The Target brand Up & Up is just $5.49 for 30 count.

Lynee brought this picket fence she found a while ago at a discount store that she filled with faux craft grass and stuck the candy lollipops I got from the party store in them for a nice effect.

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Candy from the party store and the leftover Lifesavers made a nice candy station.

waffle station

The shower was a brunch so we set up a Belgian waffle station complete with toppings, and whipped cream. The serving dishes were compliments of Aunt Nicho. I got the pitcher where I whipped up batter from Walmart for $3. My other sister got the great waffle iron that she loaned us for the event. It was on sale for just $24.99.00 at Kohl’s though it is now back to $29.99.

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The Spinach quiche set on a really nice server/carver board Aunt Nicho owns.

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I made my baked salmon with sauteed onions and green peppers. My mom made her signature West African Jollof rice. My sister Adama made hot wings. I whipped up eggs and sausages and Aunt Nicho made home-cooked hash browns and biscuits.

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I set up the mixed greens and fruit on a utility station near the kitchen.

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Overall, it was a great event!

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Kim Kardashian West Is Using Lasers Not Plastic Surgery to SnapBack After Baby

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Kim Kardashian West is using plastic surgery to help return her tummy to pre-pregnancy shape. This Sunday, she posted a snap about getting her stretch marks removed by cosmetic dermatologist Dr. Simon Ourian.

Using a voice-changing filter on Snapchat that gave her cute bunny ears, Kardashian West told her fans that she was leaving the doctor’s office after they “worked on stretch marks.”

 “I feel so excited that I finally did it,” she said, “I’ve been so scared to do it thinking it hurts so badly, and it didn’t hurt that badly. So I’m so grateful, and ’m so excited. I love you Dr. Ourian!”

Last week, she revealed that the same doctor worked on tightening the area around her belly button.

“So I’m spending my Saturday with Dr. Ourian and it f—— kills but it will be worth it,” she explained at the time. “We are lasering. You guys, I never thought I could love someone and hate someone so much at the same time.”

“If anyone that’s had babies understand what it’s done to your belly button, then you really understand how much you need Dr. Ourian to tighten around your belly button so it could look back normal,” she added.

And last summer, the biz mogul Snap documented her “skin-tightening” procedure with the Dr. O. The procedure is a less invasive tummy tuck, she shared on Snapchat.

And that led to what cosmetic surgeons are calling the “Dash Effect“, PEOPLE reported recently.

U.K. cosmetic surgery group Transform reports that they have seen a 73 percent increase in inquiries from patients citing Kardashian family members as inspiration.

The trend article calls the plastic surgery craze the “Dash Effect,” and states that after Kylie Jenner admitted to having lip fillers earlier this year, they received a 700 percent rise in inquiries about the procedure overnight.

 

QUIZ: Which Movie and Real Life President are You?

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Happy Presidents Day!

We could share a quiz on how well do you know the US Presidents of the past but that could be a disaster so instead, we’re offering you a quiz on which Movie President and then which actual President are you based on your answers to this quiz:


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The Carters Got More Applause at the All-Star Game than some Players

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When you’re Beyonce and Jay-Z, you can just stroll down to your court side seats with your adorable 5-year old daughter Blue Ivy at the National Basketball Association‘s All-Star game in New Orleans and get more applause than the players during the calling of the starting line up.

And if you’re Queen Bey, it doesn’t matter that you’re carrying twins, likely have swollen feet and get overheated, you’re Beyonce and you look fabulous and deserve it all. I’m sure the detractors would not agree but oh well. (smile)


Here are the un-sourced photos from tonight’s game at the Smoothie King Arena circulating in social media.

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https://twitter.com/markd103/status/833513382066135041

Winter Nail Care: How to Give Yourself a Parrafin Wax Manicure

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Do you have a hand that is rough and dry? If yes, it time that you take care of your hands and make them beautiful and smooth. Going to the spa for a manicure is quite expensive. So here is a solution for you. This is an amazing manicure, which you can do easily at home and thus save money. We are talking about paraffin wax manicure and this is how it is done.

  • Heat paraffin wax in a large bowl for 10 seconds in the microwave. Make sure that the wax gets liquefied completely.
  • Let the wax cool down. As it gets cooled, apply a thick and rich cream or lotion on your hands and massage well, so that your hands are well moisturized.
  • Now check whether the wax has cooled and then dip your hands in this wax. Lift your hands from the wax and then wait for 5 seconds and then dip your hand again. Repeat this till your hands het completely covered with wax and 5 to 7 layers of the wax is made on your hand. Now you can wait as long as you wish. You may use this time to sit back and relax, watching TV or a movie, or listening to your favorite songs.
  • You should make sure that you leave wax on your hand for at least 30 minutes. This will provide you excellent results. After the stipulated time, go to the trash bin and takeoff the paraffin from your hand. After removing the wax, massage your hand again with cream or lotion. Now cover your hand with a glove. Repeat with the other hand also.
  • Now apply the same procedure for waxing your feet also.
  • Once you have completed treating your hands and feet in this manner, you will see that your hands and feet have become soft and smooth. All the dryness and roughness you felt on your hands and feet will be gone. One of the additional benefits of paraffin wax is that it also makes your nails strong.

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In Bump Watch News: Beyonce, Tori Spelling and Hannah Jeter

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I must admit that I enjoy that the Bey Hive is on patrol to shut down critics of Beyonce in the comment section to articles about her like this one below about her first major 3-hour shopping trip after announcing her news. Go Beygency, Go!

Oh and in other pregnant celebrity news, Tori Spelling posted a photo of herself at close to term on her social media account.


And after having very public and rumored relationships  with a bunch of our Bellyitch Bumpwatch alums like Mariah Carey, Jessica Alba, Vanessa Lachey, Jessica Biel, and Adriana Lima, ex MLB star Derek Jeter and his Victoria Secret swimsuit model wife Hannah Jeter are expecting their first child together since marrying

She posted a bump photo on Instagram recently.

And now a repost of the E! article about Bey:

If you were browsing the racks at Barneys New York in Beverly Hills Thursday, you were in some special company.

Fresh off her 2017 Grammys performance and wins, Beyoncé made a rare public appearance at the luxury department store during its regular open hours and spent about three hours shopping.

The 35-year-old pop star, who is expecting twins with husband Jay Z, dressed casually in a black printed T-shirt and shorts and white sneakers and was accompanied by a group of bodyguards.

She did not buy children’s items. She walked through several floors, looking at designer gowns, purses, jewelry and shoes. She purchased a $1,225 pair of redIsabel Marart Laith leather knee-high boots, a pair of Ulla Johnson shoes and Nike sneakers, a source told E! News exclusively.

Beyoncé spent about 20 minutes in the store’s Barneys Bungalow, a specialty space where gowns from Prabal Gurung, J. Mendel, Lanvin, JC Obando, Monique Lhuillier, YSL and Manolo Blahnik and other designer brands, as well as luxury tuxedos and accessories, are displayed in honor of Hollywood’s award season. Several racks of dresses and other items were brought out for the singer, who sat on a light green couch.

“Beyoncé tried on several dresses but began not to feel well and was tired,” the source said.

“She seemed very nice and was very casual,” the source added about the singer’s visit. “She had several bodyguards around her and everyone in the store was chatting about her being there.”

The source also said Beyoncé has bought children’s items at Barney’s in the past.

The singer announced her pregnancy on Feb. 1 via a baby bump photo posted on her Instagram page. She followed it up with a full album of maternity pics, which also featured her and Jay Z’s 5-year-old daughter, Blue Ivy.

Last weekend, Beyoncé showcased her baby bump publicly for the first time, at the 2017 Grammys, where she won two awards and gave a much-talked about maternity-themed performance.

Your 100 Item Spring Cleaning Checklist is Here!

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Spring is coming and very soon it will be time to start thinking of doing a thorough and comprehensive cleaning and overhaul of the family home. Spring Cleaning is a time to start fresh and get rid of all the accumulated dust, grime and dirt from everyone being crammed indoors.

A little while ago the Imperfect Homemaking blog came up with a pretty thorough list of over 100 tasks including some of these below to guide your cleaning:

FOYER
1. Dust lighting fixtures.
2. Wash walls and trim
3. Wash doors, knobs and switch plates.
4. Wash bench or other furnishings. Launder bench cushion, if applicable.
5. Empty out coat closet. Wash walls and floor, if needed. Sort items as you return them to the closet. 6. 6. Store out of season items, donate unneeded items.
7. Clean or replace entry mat.
8. Sweep and scrub floors.
9. Reseal grout lines, if necessary.
BEDROOMS
11. Open windows
12. Dust furniture.
13. For each drawer: remove items, wash drawer, place items back neatly. Donate Items you no longer need.
14. Remove everything from closets. Sweep and wash closet floor. Put everything back neatly. Donate items you no longer need. Try not to store things on closet floor.
15. Move Bed. Sort and put away anything that was under bed. Sweep or vacuum under bed. Try not to store things under bed.
16. Put bed back. Freshen mattress by sprinkling with baking soda, letting sit briefly, and the vacuuming it up.
17. Launder bedding and curtains. Wash pillows and duvet in hot water. Air out mattress pad, if you have one.
18. Dust lights. Clean lamp shades.
19. Wash windows and window sills. Take out and wash window screens.
20. Wash switch plates. Wash walls and trim as needed.
21. Wash mirrors or dust art.
22. Wash doors and doorknobs.
23. Wash floor registers and other vent covers.
24. Sweep and wash floor or vacuum.


BATHROOMS
25. Open windows
26. Empty all cabinets and vanity. Wash inside, replace items neatly. Discard expired medications and cosmetics.
27. Wash outside of cabinets and vanities
28. Clean tub. Wax if necessary. Clean drain.
29. Clean toilet, inside and out. Remove seat and clean around seat bolts.
30. Clean sink and drain.
31. Shine faucets.
32. Clean mirror and frame .
33. Dust light fixtures.
34. Wash windows and window sills. Take out and wash window screens.
35. Wash switch plates. wash walls and trim. Wash doors and door knobs.
36. Wash floor registers and other vent covers.
37. Sweep and wash floors.
38. Reseal grout lines if necessary.

KITCHEN
39. Open windows.
40. Remove and clean window coverings. Click here for instructions on cleaning mini blinds.
41. For each cabinet or drawer: Remove items, wipe out drawer, place items back neatly. Donate unneeded items.
42. Wash and sanitize cutting boards
43. Sharpen knives
44. Wash cabinet doors and knobs
45. Clean and organize pantry. Check food expiry dates.
46. Clean oven.
47. Clean stove top. Remove elements and drip bowls, if applicable, wash and put back.
48. Clean and organize fridge and freezer. Defrost freezer, if necessary. Check food expiry dates.
49. Clean under fridge and stove.
50. Vacuum refrigerator coils.

Continue READING and get the rest of the list for other areas of the home at Imperfect Homemaking and download a PRINTABLE LIST HERE!

Happy Cleaning!
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So Zoe Saldana Low Key Just Had Another Baby

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Zoe Saldana is definitely up there in terms of one of the most private celebs. Like she low-key had another baby and only just announced the news this morning on her Instagram.

“Marco and I are elated to share the news of the birth of our son Zen. We couldn’t feel more blessed with the new addition to our family. #threeboys… oh boy!” the Guardians of the Galaxy star captioned a photo of her twin boys Cy and Bowie hovering over their little brother.


No one ever saw her pregnant but that doesn’t mean she wasn’t.

This week, she appeared at the launch of her Confidential magazine winter issue cover photo at 3033 Wilshire on Thursday, February 16, 2017 in Los Angeles, California.

She wore a long black dress which could be shielding her post partum bump.

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And last month, there was virtually no belly at all evidenced by the white long sleeve sweater and white skirt she wore to the Los Angeles premiere of  her latest project Live By Night at the TCL Chinese Theatre, Hollywood, CA on January 9, 2017. That film opened on January 13.

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It could be that the baby was born a while ago and she is only just announcing it today or the baby arrived via gestational surrogate or adoption. No news yet.

Saldana and her husband Marc Perego welcomed the twins on November 27, 2014 but didn’t announce the news until a couple of months later. And while the Avatar star frequently shares photos of her boys on her Instagram account, she has never shown their faces.

She may be the Queen of Low Key.

 

photo: Getty

People Have Been Adopting Leftover Frozen In Vitro Embryos; and Bringing Them to Life

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There are now well over one million embryos frozen in storage in the United States, many left over by people who have completed their families through IVF. Rather than discarding the frozen embryos or donating them to science, many families are now choosing to put their embryos up for adoption to give them a chance at life.

Embryo adoption is the newest nationwide trend in adoption and is gaining a lot of popularity.  In fact, the 500th baby was born last month to a loving and adoptive family as part of the Snowflakes Embryo Adoption program. This program allows couple to adopt embryos, some of which have been frozen for more than a decade, to become healthy, happy babies and children!


Couples who have used donated embryos to achieve pregnancy have learned that genetics really don’t matter at all, says Kimberly Tyson, director of the Snowflakes Embryo Adoption program.  What matters is they experienced what it was like to be pregnant and give birth to their child, the child they adopted just nine months earlier than ‘normal’.

The babies born this unique and special way to their adoptive parents are known as “Snowflake Babies“.  The Snowflakes Embryo Adoption Program is celebrating its 20th anniversary since being first established in 1997 as the first program of its kind in the world.

Since that time, more than 1,400 babies have been born to families following an embryo adoption model. Working with fertility clinics, the program allows couples to place their remaining embryos from their in vitro fertilization treatment with a family of their choice, just like with traditional adoption of a live child.

The difference is actually a bonus: the woman who gives birth to this non-genetic child is declared the legal mother of the child on the birth certificate and the man to whom she is married is declared the father.  No court finalizations are necessary to affirm parentage, as with adoption.

There is a higher cost than  simple frozen embryo transfer at a clinic.

“That’s because the adoption agency is providing both families with security of the placement,” Tyson declares.  “The agency is encouraging an open relationship between two families who are both parenting full genetic siblings. The agency is helping the right two families connect with one another.  No secrecy.”

Many embryo adoption organizations have embryos waiting for families to adopt them, she adds.  “Families placing their embryos for adoption are attracted to the fact they can have some control regarding who receives their embryo gift.”

If you are interested in learning more about embryo adoption visit www.embryoadoption.org or www.snowflakes.org.

Editor’s note: In vitro fertilization, surrogacy and other artificial means of impregnating a woman who eventually gives birth to a human child are excellent ways for couples struggling to have a baby achieve their dream.

However, these processes are also controversial for Catholics, pro-lifers, like myself, and others who struggle over the fact that fertilized eggs that would otherwise develop into a human child, but are leftover or unwanted are destroyed every year.

Embryo adoption provides some comfort in knowing that the leftover eggs are saved and donated to other couples who cannot conceive on their own; or women who want a baby but are without a partner. Bravo!