Wednesday, June 30, 2010


We are sooo excited and there is so much I want to post about!
For now I am going to continue my happy dance
and put together a new nursery board for "Miss M"!

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Top 10 Reasons Why Today is a Perfect Day

Today I feel like my old self. I feel happy, energetic, peaceful, inspired, patient, and creative. I haven't felt like this in a few months and it is a relief to know that I am still in here somewhere, beneath the finicky stomach and the headaches. I feel accomplished, heck I felt accomplish by 10am this morning and it is just getting better and better! Here are my Top 10 Reasons Why Today is a Perfect Day:

10. It is about 72 degrees out with sunny skies and a beautiful breeze.

9. I feel like my well of patience has returned, especially with my youngest little troublemaker!

8. My creativity has come back to me along with the desire to make things again.

7. I am not stressed about ANYTHING and feel so calm.

6. I woke up easily after a good night's sleep... something that is getting harder and harder to do. 

5. All the girls are so well behaved that we took an extra trip to the park after the Nature Center Trip!

6. I found the perfect party favor box here for the girl's joint birthday party!

5. Thanks to this photo I am inspired to start a project which CAN'T be completed in a day.

4. My DIY Glitter Toes are holding up despite showers, sand, and sneakers. 
Did I mention how much I love them? lol!

3. I am really close to putting my own icon next to my blog URL and that makes me smile!

2. I actually woke up hungry this morning... that hasn't happened in weeks.

1. Tomorrow we get to find out if this baby is a boy or girl, and that makes me REALLY happy!

Monday, June 28, 2010

My Picture Perfect House

Heck no, it isn't my ACTUAL house! Are you all on crack?! Lol! You think after having 4 little girls in my house all day it is in any shape for photos..... NOT! (Of course I love having all these little girls running all over my house, a girl has to dream though!)

Thanks to House of Turquoise I can  plan for the distant future days when my kids are grown, my cats are all non-shedding, and my husband doesn't care how I decorate the house. This is what my Dream House looks like:

(all images via House of Turquoise)

Isn't it lovely? All that color... mmmm.... definitely going to be my future home someday!

Sunday, June 27, 2010

Blog Makeover Giveaway Winner!!!

Thank you all sooo much for commenting and voting on the new blog look! It really made me feel better knowing that you all liked it as much as I did, and that it isn't too messy or hard to read. I am glad to announce that the winner of the Blog Makeover Giveaway is............. AMY!!!

Blogger Amy said...
I really like the look of your blog. I think it flows well, and keeps things neat and together. My fave points: the title part--I think it's pretty, creative, and gives that scrapbook-y feel. I also like the pregnant woman to one side and the framed "Summer 2010" on the other. The peeling paint on the wood/house is precious and comforting. It helps give the blog a homey-feel. I agree with danasparkle that the dark bubbles might be a bit bold in contrast to the other parts in the title. Another fave part: the CK signature and "Other things you might like" (or is it "enjoy?"). I have tried to update the look of my family blog but it never looks original or creative, or "me" which is something I love about your new style!
So Amy, please email me ( and we can get started on your blog makeover asap! I can't wait to help you get a look for your space that fits your personality and content.
Also, as a thank you to all my wonderful readers I am offering a coupon for 20% off ANYTHING in my Etsy store OR Free Shipping (USA) from now until the 4th of July!! Just add 20%OFF or FREESHIP to the Notes to Seller when you check out and I will refund you the amount!

Have a great day!!!!  

"You are One Crafty Mama!"

So my oldest daughter exclaimed after I finished a sundress for her and AJ! I went to Jo-Ann's for some last minute cake toppper supplies and saw that sundress material was a whopping 60% off... of course I HAD to let the girls pick out some fabric for themselves. Not only was there some awesome strawberry fabric, but AJ had already picked up her tube of dress fabric and was singing, "I have a Belle dress, I have a Belle dress". Lol, I was done in. The question was whether I was going to be able to pop out two sundresses, complete with straps, in a mere 45 minutes.... thank goodness my girls watched some Backyardigans while my machine hummed away!

On top of my awesome dress making, we also decided this morning to give ourselves some pretty Glitter Toes, thanks to this wonderful DIY from Or So She Says! I had no clue that with some clear nail polish and some fine craft glitter we could have sparkly toesies in minutes!!! LOVE them!

Saturday, June 26, 2010

This is my happy place!

A beautiful sunset at the beach,
Kids playing in the sand and surf,
The smell of sunscreen in the air,
Pebbles between my toes,
As the waves gently roll in,
I have found my happy place in the world again!

Thursday, June 24, 2010

Searching for My Happy Place

It seems to me these last couple of days that my preggo hormones have really been making me a bit blue... not "me" at all! I have been getting some killer headaches, the kind that make blinking a hurtful thing, and in general there are a lot of frustrations in my life that usually I can take in stride... just not right now. I am usually the kind of person who always sees the sunny side of life and can get over a bump in the road with ease. This whole "blue period" thing is driving me nuts because I just can't drag myself up.

I am frustrated with AJ, who is battling me about naps and bedtime. I have come to dread this once peaceful routine because my child HATES sleeping and refuses to accept the fact that she still needs naps and can't stay up until 11 every night. Positive reinforcements don't work, negative reinforcements get laughed at... seriously I am in tears many nights because she just refuses to go to sleep.

I am frustrated with our bank who cannot seem to get it's act together... why, when I talk to 5 different people, do I get 5 very conflicting answers to a simple question?

I am frustrated with life, marriage, my changing body that is keeping me from eating anything of substance.... the list goes on and on dear friends....

I totally get that a lot of my feelings are hormones, some of it is the fact that I haven't been crafting which is my own personal brand of therapy, and that some of it is not in my control. I guess it just helps to be able to vent here, in my own little bubble. And I am sure that tomorrow I will pick myself back up and figure out how to deal with all these frustrations in my life. (Duct tape and Benedryll is looking like an option for the bedtime fight! *kidding*)
(photo from here)

Once the garage sale is over I will be reclaiming my craft space and will dig deep in the well of inspiration for something to keep my hands busy... till then I will search for my happy place!

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

So Thankful- UPDATE

Tonight, after a long day of sun, water, and little girls, I find myself lighting a candle to Buddha for one little brave girl and her family. A high school friend of mine, Krista, has a little girl who was diagnosed two years ago with embryonal rhabdomyosarcoma. She finished chemo for it about a year ago and has been cancer free since. However, not every child who has this rare form of pediatric cancer is as lucky. One of those children is Ellie Potvin, a wonderous and beautiful 8 yr old whose sparkling eyes light up the room. This is the video that Krista posted that introduced me to Ellie:

Please say a prayer, light a candle, however your beliefs lead you to send some positive light toward this family who has suffered and is facing the death of a beloved child. If you want to read more about Ellie's story and send a donation to her family here are the various links:
Caring Bridge
Lift Up Ellie
Project Bloom Girls

Over the last couple of years, thanks to the Internet, I have heard about too many children fighting a fight that they should not have to face. Mothers losing their babies too soon to a disease that has no warning and does not discriminate. I am sending out my thoughts, hope, and light to all families out there tonight who are fighting along side their little ones.

UPDATE: Today (June 23rd) Dear Ellie passed away in her mother's arms at 11:35am. She is no longer in pain and suffering. There is funeral information on the Caring Bridge website listed above. I hope that someday soon we will have a better way to treat this awful disease, for the sake of all of our children.

Monday, June 21, 2010

Having a Baby- Etsy Style

Through the last couple of years I have come to the conclusion that ANYTHING can be found on Etsy... those hard to shop for people find gifts here, the weird and unusual are celebrated, and really... you don't have to shop anywhere else for quality items... it is a one stop bonanza! I thought it would be fun to see how many fun and cool shops I could find on Etsy that would fulfill all the needs of the posh and savvy mom-to-be! Take a peek, click around, and let me know what you think:

Maternity Clothes:
Bubble Weeds Maternity Top- Ellembee
Maternity Love Me 2 Times Dress- GaiaConceptions
Cute Due Date Maternity Teeshirt- Culpepergeneral
Creamy Muse Dress- LaMuseMama
Cool and Witty Maternity Tees for Entire Family- JellybeanApparel
Homemade Belly Bands- Runsystem63

Nursing Needs-
Cashmere Nursing Pads- MilkMadeMomma
TaTa Tent Nursing Cover- LacyJaneStudio
Sore Nipple Salve- WildRoot

Nursery Decor-
Vintage Bicycle Growth Chart- GiraffesandStuff
Custom Birth Information Canvas- TrendyPeas
Adorable Stroller Blankets- BabyMaeBoutique
Custom Baby Bedding- BirdsHaveFlowers
Fish Mobile- Leptitpapillon

Baby Needs-
Travel Changing Set- DillyBaby
Wet Bags- EssieDesigns
One Size Cloth Diapers- BundledBums
Pretty Burb Cloths- LilHipsters
Awesome Designer Fabric Bibs- MimiAndLola

Baby Shower Things-
Onesie and Washcloth Cupcakes- BabyDeary
Punk Rockstar Clothing Kit- Lowleepop
Baby Feet Shea Soap- SheaSoap
Expecting Mama Custom Invitation- LillyMaeDesigns

Baby Toys-
Apple Wooden Toy- TheBitsyBean
Ribbon Plush Dino- LittleSidekick
Heirloom Wooden Blocks- MaternalNEST
Owl Pillow- ManicMuffinTotes

And the list can go on and on and on.... There are so many new things added daily for everyone you know! Hope that you check some of these wonderful sellers out and happy shopping!!!

Sunday, June 20, 2010

It is Garage Sale Time!!

Summer is not my favorite season of the year but there are a few reasons that I bear it and even look forward to it. Beach trips, gardening, fair food, and most importantly- garage sales! I am a firm believer that one person's trash is another's treasure and in the past couple of weeks I have found some awesome deals from garage sales. Just this past week I bought some beautiful baby clothes (neutral of course!), a baby ring sling (yay!), as well as some gently used clothes for the girls.

This upcoming weekend Lakewood is going to have an All City Garage Sale and we decided sort of last minute to join in the fun. Looking around at first I didn't think that we had a lot of stuff to sell, but upon closer inspection I found that we have lots of items that I think will go pretty fast- a 3-cd wall mounted player (we are all iPod now), a child's bike seat that almost brand new, a never used monkey cookie jar, Tickle Me Elmo Hands (scary to me), and a travel baby swing that isn't needed. I found some framed children's art that the girls didn't care for, lots of fabric that I have no use for, a bucket of sewing scraps, and so many books that I should just have my own library!

Although this isn't our first garage sale here are some tips that I have learned from being an avid buyer that maybe will help some of you out there planning your own garage sale:

♥ If you don't want Early Birds you better say so in your ad, something like "Early Birds will be shot on sight" will probably get your point across.

♥ Advertise everywhere you can! Craigslist is where I go for my scoop so that is where I will post our sale this year.

♥ Price everything visibly... nothing is worse than having to guess or go ask about every item you pick up.

♥ Blanket signs like "All Toys- .50" and "All Clothes- $1" are great signs and save you a lot of trouble.

♥ Have a money box, but carry around money and change with you... craft and hardware aprons are great for this.

♥ Clean up everything and present it nicely! Nothing is worse than picking up a filthy glass or toy... it turns me off to the whole sale.

♥ Don't price your items higher than a third or quarter of the original cost, even if it is in perfect condition. People wont care that you bought that table 10 years ago for $700... everyone who buys at garage sales is looking for a deal.

♥ Finally, don't hover around the people buying at your sale and tell a story about everything there... it is weird and personally makes me run away!

Do you enjoy garage sales and if so what tips do you have to share for buyers AND sellers??

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Lilith Fair is Back!

Oh my, oh my, oh my! Lilith Fair is back in all her feminine glory and I am sooooo excited! Big names like Kelly Clarkson, Colbie Caillat, Nora Jones, many more, and of course Sarah McLachlan. I remember getting the CD from one of these wonderful concerts back in the 90's and falling asleep to it at night... ahh the memories from high school!

I think I am even more excited because the artists more often than not are belting out their tried and true hits, the ones that everyone knows the words to and will gladly sing along to. Not to mention that with the lineup here, you can bring your mom, sister, kids, whoever and know that it is a empowering and friendly event.

Is Lilith Fair coming to a city near you?

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

A Poll and a Giveaway!

 So here is the deal... I am curious to know how people feel about my blog's look, if it is really nice to look at or is a little too messy. I personally can't read blogs that are messy, ad heavy, and hide the actual content beneath all the clutter. Part of me is a little worried that I got carried away with the graphics, the new feature that shows related blog posts after every post, and all the color... but I have to admit that I am a fan of the look.

At the bottom of the blog is a poll about the new blog look and with it I am giving away to one lucky reader a Blog Makeover. Want to win? Here is how:

1. Go to the poll at the bottom of the blog and throw an answer at me!
2. Leave me a comment telling me about what you would do with the Makeover if you won it!
3. If you facebook or tweet about this giveaway then you will get another entry... just leave another comment telling me you did something extra. 
4. Poll and Giveaway close on June 22, 2010 at midnight.

The winner will get help with all the graphics installation, template formatting, overall look consultation, and more!  So go answer that poll and leave a comment... I can't wait to hear from everyone!

Monday, June 14, 2010

Happy Monday!

Hello and Good Afternoon Friends!
  How is everyone doing today? Me? I am hanging in there, cleaning, getting ready for another T-ball game with the Gabba, and finally doing some crafting! YAY! Speaking of crafting... man oh man are there are a lot of cool tutorials out there right now. Things for Father's Day, things for baby, and even things for me.... where to start? I know that there are more than this, but these are a great start! So check these linkys out and enjoy dear readers! (Oh and be sure to peek about the blog... added some cool graphics!!)

Paper Bird Cage Lanterns
Tow Mater Cupcakes
Patchwork Pillow
Vinyl Mustache Bib (if baby bear is a boy!)
Altoid Tin Tool Box
Spring Tote
Derby Hat Tutorial

Only a little over 2 weeks until we find out if we can buy pink or blue... then I am sure there will be a huge explosion of crafts, projects, and shopping on here...can't wait!

Sunday, June 13, 2010


Trying out some new things here... as you can see I finally took the time to really design my blog to reflect my tastes and personality and am LOVING it! I got woken up early this morning and looked at my previous layout, which was nice but not me... so I did some quick html work, some Photoshop work, and voila!

Speaking of things that I am in love with... this bathing suit from Shabby Apple would sooooo be mine if I wasn't already looking like I am at least 20 weeks preggers! Even so, I am tempted to try to wedge my belly in it just because it is adorable.

Well back to working out some blog kinks... ciao!

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

The List 6.9.10

Hello Dear Readers!
  Today I am feeling so inspired that I hardly know where to start! I want to bake some banana bread, paint the baby's room, sew a few pillowcase dresses, and maybe even make my own ta-ta nursing cream! Lol... I guess this is what happens when you take a 3 month crafting hiatus... I am sure I will have some interesting posts coming up with all the fun projects that I have lined up! Here are some things that are really inspiring me on the web:

♥ I have been lending out a lot of books lately and am thinking that I should probably add bookplates to them like I do for my girls favorite reads as well. These pretty grownup bookplates by How About Orange are perfect!

♥ I am not much of a baker, but am really curious to try this delicious sounding Sour Cream Apple Pie recipe from Posie Gets Cozy!

♥ With the girls birthdays fast approaching I am already thinking about their smallish parties and stuff that I want to do for them... these cupcake toppers might be just the thing... and of course I will have to make them myself just because Gabby and AJ like it when I do that!

♥ Since I  already have the colors of the baby's room picked out I am starting to rethink how I want to decorate it and unfortunately it is starting to be based on whether is is a boy or a girl, lol! I am in LOVE with this lovely photo of a teal truck on a vintage beige background!

♥ Speaking of the baby's room... I would really like to have Gabby and AJ help make something for the room as well... these pretty HodgePodge Hand Trees are pretty and even shown in the colors I am addicted to!

♥ And while I am thinking about birthdays and decorations... this totally easy and super cute Balloon Door Wreath is getting made ASAP and will be gracing our door whenever it is someone's birthday week! Yep, love it too!!

Monday, June 7, 2010

A City on the Lake

It is no secret that I love the beach and I love any crafts that involve beachy things.
I plan on making adorable photo stands with beach rocks,
candles with sand and seashells on them,
and a little town made of driftwood just like this lovely photo!

Alisa Burke made this pretty little town and took these pretty photos herself
and wrote a tutorial so you can do the same here!!
The concept is pretty simple... 
take a trip to the beach and collect your drift wood... little pieces are prefect.
Then bring them home, with some glue and paint make your buildings,
the return to the beach to set up your city or town...
sigh, isn't is so perfect?!

What crafts are you planning to do this summer?

Sunday, June 6, 2010

Ring Slings and Other Things

Now that this pregnancy is starting to feel more real I am thinking about some essentials that we need for the baby and all the options out there. One thing that I am trying to pick out is a pretty ring sling or Maya Wrap for me to use. I have a Moby Wrap type of wrap that I will use for when the baby is bitty, but I think a ring sling will work better for when the baby is older and I want to use a hip carry more often than not. There is great tutorial by the Maya Wrap company that shows you how to make your own ring sling too, so that is always an option...check it out here. Looks pretty straightforward and then I would be able to pick out my favorite fabric for the sling and the zip pocket.

I noticed that on Etsy there are a couple of stores that sell ring slings and such. One is SnuggyBaby who I have featured here before! If you are a baby wearing mama, what is your favorite style of sling, wrap, or carrier?

Saturday, June 5, 2010

Sigh... darn preggo brain...

So you will notice that my blog looks a little differently today....sigh... and no, it was not by choice. I make a rookie computer mistake and hit save on a page that instead of saving my current blog template erased it and saved a new starter template. Ugh! I knew as soon as I really looked at the page that I have just killed my blog layout and would have to start over.

What started this whole mess is that I saw a post about new template designer features Blogger just released to make it really easy to make your own template here. It is a really great article and I wanted to try it out for future use... just NOT at that moment!

I love being able to customize how my blog looks and I was thinking about a new layout since we are adding baby bear to the family. It is challenging though since I don't want to look like everyone else's blog. The current layout that you see may stick around for a little while or it may be gone tomorrow if I get inspired and whip something for "me" up. For now I like a lot of things about it and am comfortable with people coming to my little space as it is. I just couldn't leave it blank...ick!

If you want to play around with your blog this blog has lots of cool tips, tricks, layouts, and buttons to use! I have also heard great things about Cutest Blog on the Block and CreateBlog.

Friday, June 4, 2010

Hearts A Flutter

I am pretty sure that I am in love with this mobile from Willowbaus, along with her wooden Covered Wagons and Sailboats! This is exactly the kind of things I want for Baby Bear's room... wooden, earth friendly, and slightly rustic. Although with the mobile I think I may try to make one similar myself but instead of ribbon use twine, and do the birds in a pretty apple green, robin's egg blue, and brown.

I have changed the colors slightly that I am using since I found a huge stash of fabric for sheets in those colors and love how the apple green looks with blue and brown.

I am also digging this awesome denim diaper cover and denim hat with ears (!) from Baby Gap.... who can resist a floppy hat with ears???

There is something so comfy and fun about denim... I am even thinking I may embroider Baby Bear's star sign onto some very dark denim, like this... just have to nail down with he or she is arriving! Hopefully I can at least schedule the gender check today... I can't wait!!!

Thursday, June 3, 2010

Disappearing Freezer Jam

One thing that I am itching to try this summer is making my own freezer jam... specifically Strawberry Rhubarb Freezer Jam. There are a lot of recipes floating around out there but I don't think I need 25 cartons of berries sitting on my counter or tons of jars packed in the freezer. Something small that I can whip up when I feel the urge...

Here is a recipe that fits the bill, from Mandy Gerth. Her version is just plain Strawberry Jam, but I am just going to throw in some rhubarb and take it from there.... mmmmm.... Isn't her photo just lovely??

Strawberry Freezer Jam

1 packet No Sugar Needed Sure Jell Pectin
4 Cups Berries, smashed 
¾ Cup Sugar
apple juice (amount as described in Sure Jell directions)

Remove the green tops from your berries and smash them with a potato smasher in a very large bowl.
Stir Sugar into your berry mixture.
Boil apple juice and pectin as described in the Sure Jell directions.
Add the juice/pectin mixture to your berry mixture.
Ladle into clean glass jars leaving plenty of space at the top of the jar for your jam to expand in the freezer. (Since this is freezer jam the jars don’t have to be sterilized, they also don’t have to be canning jars, just any jar you have hanging around.) 
Store in the fridge overnight and move to the freezer the next day.

This recipe can be doubled (in our case tripled) and still come out just dandy. 
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