Wednesday, August 31, 2011

{Meet Hoppy}

Last week my daughter announced that she would be bringing home “Hoppy”, the class frog. You can imagine my relief to find out that “Hoppy” was actually a rubber {tub toy] frog, but to my three year old, he might as well have been real.


It took about five minutes for Abby to declare that Hoppy needed some water. And so for the next seven days, Hoppy ate his meals {three meals a day, with snacks} in our kitchen floor.


Hoppy seemed to enjoy his stay with us. Abby made sure he had plenty of time for coloring/painting/playtime and every time I walked by, he always had a big smile on his face, hehe.

Hoppy also came with a journal, that Abby recorded their adventures in, complete with illustrations.

But alas, it was Monday again, and time for Hoppy to return to school and get ready for his next big adventure. See you in eight weeks Hoppy!

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

{Smore’s {Happy} Birthday Cakes}

Today is my hubby’s “Happy Birthday” as our three year old says. He’s turning a very hot 29 *wink*. And I can honestly say after nine years together, he still takes my breath away every. single. time. I see him. He’s my best friend, the love of my life, my shoulder to lean on, my rock, my hero, and the other half of my heart. And I absolutely hate that he’s not home so I can spoil him silly on his birthday. He likes to play it all cool, like he doesn’t really care about birthdays, but I know the truth. And there is nothing better than watching him light up when I produce yet another creation made from coconut cake.  But since his birthday treats have to travel 7,000 miles over oceans, mountains and far away lands this year, I was a little worried about coconut cake drying out. It’s really hard to send frosted cakes in a care package, and well, the icing with all that coconut is the best part of a coconut cake- right?
So this year, we’re breaking from tradition a little bit {which, ironically, seems  to be the entire them of our year so far..}. Instead of coconut concoctions, I found a way to stuff s’mores cakes into tiny little jars and mail them off for our birthday boy.
No, I’m not sick of s’mores yet. Yes, there are still a few s’mores related recipes I have not tried.
Thank you for asking.
I found this tutorial and followed her instructions- with my own little twist. Ya’ll know I never have all the ingredients in my cabinet for anything, and I wasn’t about to drag two babies to the grocery store for graham crackers, so I improvised.
Instead of graham crackers, I used a combo of graham crackers and ritz crackers { I was short on graham crackers}. I also discovered i was out of marshmallows, but I did have marshmallow cream. Even better.
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These jars are from Better Homes and Gardens, and they are adorable all on their own.
No dressing up needed.
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We wrapped ‘em and stuffed ‘em into very festive birthday boxes complete with decor, snacks, hats, presents, artwork and lots of confetti, shred and love.

And then we made this video that we sent to him today.

Happy Birthday Baby!
Here’s to NOT eating cake out of a jar next year!
I love you moon and back!
Monday, August 29, 2011

{Mustard is the color of my Fall}

Source: via Stefanie on Pinterest

Source: via Stefanie on Pinterest

Source: via Stefanie on Pinterest



What colors are inspiring you this season?

Saturday, August 27, 2011

{Here Comes the Bridal {Shower}

Wow. My baby brother is getting married. It’s really kind of hard to believe, What’s even harder to believe is that he’s not a baby anymore. He’s twenty three. And he’s getting married.

And I have the honor of throwing my new sister a bridal shower. Ok, actually a lingerie shower. And I'm so. stinkin. excited!  I've been perusing the internet and magazines for a few weeks and pinning/ripping out every picture I find that inspires me. And for a bit it was all over the place, but finally, it hit me. And now things are just falling into place.

Finding time to schedule a shower was not so easy. With my crazy, hectic calendar, it was difficult to even set a date. They’re getting married in late February, and we wanted to make sure to avoid throwing a shower right smack dab next to a holiday. That, combined with our upcoming redeployment schedule {yeah!!!!!!} and preschool and fall markets and shows for Abby Maddy….and well, the 1st of October was it. And the sweet, lovely bride was happy to oblige So I’m getting to throw a Fall bridal shower- and I LOOOOOOOVEEE it!!  Seriously, I'm so psyched! I love Fall so, so much, and always secretly wished we could have had a Fall wedding. Sooooo….this is the next best thing, right?

Any who, I thought I’d share with you a few things that are inspiring me for this upcoming soiree. Take a look.

Source: via Stefanie on Pinterest

You’re probably wondering what all these things have in common? Well, you’ll find out after October 1st {*wink*} But I’ll give you one hint: I'm throwing a fall shower, but I won’t be using ghosts, goblins or gourds…

Thursday, August 25, 2011

{Travel Chalkboards}

I ran across this tutorial a few months ago, and thought it was just too cute to resist. You know my love of chalkboards, coupled with my love of school supplies, and well, you know I had to try it out.


And yes, I also know my nine month old is too little to play with chalk, but it just looked so much cuter to have them both hanging in the mudroom together. I can always use them for caregiver instructions, preschool calendars, etc…

clipboard chalk board paint 3

Head on over to Little Birdie Secrets and check out their tutorial.

Make sure you tell them Abby Maddy sent you!

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

{Day Planner Crush}

This past two weeks have been craaaaazy. Really, truly, crazy. It’s not just adjusting to the back to school schedule, its everything that comes along with it. Meetings, luncheons, appointments, bible study- you name it. And it’s all kicked off in the past two weeks. 

My day planner just wasn’t working for me anymore and I had been waiting all summer for Much Ado About You to get their new planners in stock. And oh was it worth the wait!DSC03788

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They’re fully customizable, from the cute little covers, to the tabs inside. And they come in all different layouts- I chose month at a glance, lots of nice white space for filling in our days.

And added bonus- the throw back style and snappy little quotes on each page. It’s working wonders for keeping us on schedule, which is more than I can say about my alarm clock…

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

{Party Hat Tutorial}


June 2010 148b

Oh my, I stumbled upon this tutorial last night and I’m totally smitten! It combines my love of ruffles with my love of hats, and it’s just fabulous.

Click on over to Girl. Inspired. and check out her tutorial to whip up these festive little beauties. Bon fete!

{Chaos & a Discount Code}

Wow, the last week has been absolute chaos at our house. Not bad chaos, just chaos. The kind where it looks like the whole house is upside down, falling apart and coming undone at the seams and then suddenly VOILA! Thing just all come together. Today, things started to finally come together. Over the weekend I finished {yea, that’s right I said FINISHED} a huge project that I will share with you as soon as I can *wink*. And then this morning a little godsend came to help in the studio, and later my brand new date book arrived. So I’m finally feeling like I’m back on track. I can function again, ok, for a little while anyway.

But….I still have TONS of work to do, so excuse the short posts this week and I hope you enjoy some of the tutorials I’ve been drooling over lately. I’ll be sharing lots of them with you over the next few days. I hope you’ll visit each one, and make sure you tell them Abby Maddy sent you!

And just to show a little love, how about a discount? Enter “August15” at check out and get 15% off your entire purchase now through August 31st!


Thursday, August 11, 2011

{Inspiration Workshop- Gardening}

It’s time to link up again, to Gussy’s Inspiration Workshop! And by the way, have you checked out that chick’s blog lately? Her posts just get better and better! This weeks prompt was about gardening. And I will admit, I do not garden. The plants in my little porch baskets are fake. So are the ones in my pots. I swear, totally fake. Not in that old lady way {you would never know} but they are plastic nonetheless.

Even though I’m not gifted with the planting and the growing, I have always dreamed of having a gardener’s shed. I think it’s my adult answer to one those cute little play houses I always wanted as a child. But I'm totally smitten with the idea of having a little shed that I could make into my studio. Lots of windows for natural light, teeny little flower boxes {with fake flowers, hehe} and a little covered stoop I could place a warmly lit lamp on. How fabulous would that be?

Source: via Stefanie on Pinterest

Source: via Stefanie on Pinterest

Source: via Stefanie on Pinterest

Source: via Stefanie on Pinterest

I can practically hear the humming of sewing machines when I look at these little sheds. And I can just see one of those pennants I’m so in love with draped across the room. They’re all so quaint and fabulous in their own little way. The pink one- Oh my Gosh!!??!! And I really love the details of the little green one, especially the Adirondack on the porch.

Maybe someday.

How does your garden grow? Tell me about it!

I’m Linking up!

Gussy Sews Inspiration Workshop!

{Pennant Love}

Ack! I meant to have this post up last night but my beloved Pinterest was having issues, and well, I was just too plain tired to do it the old fashion way and save all the pics myself! I’ve taken a couple days off to finish up a {major} project that I’ve been working on for months. Wahoo! It is soooo close to done! Just a couple things left to the umm, professionals….I can’t wait to show you, in like four more months when I can finally share the details. You’re on the edge of your seat, right? This was definitely my biggest undertaking to date, and you’re going to love, love, love it!!

In the meantime I thought I’d share with you, one of my newest obsessions. I am so in love with these little fabric pennants. There are endless ways to use them and reuse them! I love the idea of making them for a birthday party or shower and then gifting them to the guest of honor! How cute would these be strung across a nursery or craft room? Really, the possibilities are just endless.

Source: via Stefanie on Pinterest

Source: via Stefanie on Pinterest

Source: via Stefanie on Pinterest

Source: via Stefanie on Pinterest

Source: via Stefanie on Pinterest


Source: via Stefanie on Pinterest

Source: via Stefanie on Pinterest


I can’t wait to make one for Abby’s room. And for the nursery. And for my sewing studio.

And keep your eyes peeled, you just might see these popping up in some of our upcoming markets and bazaars this fall. Is there anywhere these wouldn’t look adorable?

Monday, August 8, 2011

{Giveaway Winners}

Wahooo!!! And the winners are….

Christie of Family is my Joy & Jenn of The Big Hall Family.

Email me ladies to claim your prizes!

DSC02607 lunchbox-love-spending-time

{Fashion {looking} forward}

I have a new goal for myself. It’s a big one. A really, really big one. Like, huge. As in, this is going to take some planning, some thought, some purging, some decisions, some treadmill time, some getting on purpose. But I’m determined, I’m going to make it work, I’m going to do it.

I want to love everything in my fall/winter wardrobe.

Let me ask you, {I’m talking to all you mommies out there} how many of you love everything in your wardrobe? How many of you wear everything in your wardrobe? How many of you have clothes from two pregnancies ago that don’t fit? How many of you are still wearing maternity clothes and your kid is walking? Umm, my hand is totally up for those last ones. I mean, I’m not walking around in maternity jeans, but I will admit it, I’m totally kickin’ it in some maternity tee’s on the weekends. Yeah, that’s hot….

And the thing is, I love clothes. But I’m currently about 12 pounds away from being back in my pre-pregnancy {as in pre-baby #1} wardrobe, which I’m kind of proud of, since baby #2 is only nine months and I had them 24 months apart. And let me just tell you, I am NOT one of those women that can just bounce back to my super cute, girly figure, No way, not me. It takes discipline, work and more discipline. So yeah, I'm pretty proud of where I am. But it isn't over yet.

And so I find myself stuck where a lot of mommies are. I’ve already had to buy some new clothes just out of plain necessity, but I don’t want to spend a lot on a new wardrobe in a size that I don’t want to be in. You following me? So I wear what fits, and lounge in what doesn’t. And admittedly, I don't wear everything in my closet that I could. Mostly because my walk-in is crammed so full of a maternity, pre-maternity, post maternity, pre-baby, plethora of clothes, that I cant even see what there is to wear.

So I have a goal. Join me if you will.

1) Clean out the closet. If it’s maternity, it goes. End of story. The baby making part of my life is over, it’s time for them to go. Thrift store, consignment store, just get it out.

2) If it’s too big, it goes. Which, I’m proud to say, is quite a few items. No room to go back no cushion, no fat pants ladies.

3) If it’s too small, it gets a long honest look. Will I really ever fit in those lose rise, super skinny, size 4 pre-baby jeans again? Even if I do, will I want to wear them or will they ever look the same? Probably not. If its two sizes two small, it stays. If it’s from college, it goes….you get the picture.

4) Take inventory of what I have and buy different clothes that coordinate. I am making myself a promise not to buy three more white camis when I already have two. I will resist the urge to buy the same thing over and over, even though I truly love heather gray cardigans.

5) I will buy clothes for my body type, not the latest trend. No matter how cute that circle tail skirt is, I will remember that I have hips {and love them!}  And I will only buy clothes that I absolutely. positively. love.

Ahhh, so those are some lofty goals you say. Yup, they are. But I’m excited and determined, and a little nervous. Which is how I know its a really good goal.  And it wouldn’t be a goal without a date, right? Cause a goal without a date is just a pipe dream.. So, in the next two weeks I will clean out the closet, take inventory and make a shopping list. And there will be some major hitting of the treadmill too.

And just to make sure I’m good and motivated, here are some fabulous fall outfits to drool over.LF11012M_outgsm161x300 LF11004M_outgsm161x300 LF11006M_outgsm161x300 LF11007M_outgsm161x300 LF11008M_outgsm161x300 LF11010M_outgsm161x300

photo credit

I'm a HUGE fan of ann taylor Loft. It’s so cute and so realistic too. And in two weeks when I’ve met the first part of my goal, I'm heading there first to work on this new wardrobe. Stay tuned for pics.

Wanna join me on this challenge? Leave a comment and tell me what your goals are!

Friday, August 5, 2011

{Nooks & Niches}

If you know me in real life, you know I'm all about my little basket/box organization systems. Everything in our house has a home, and at the end of day, everything goes back in its place.


With two little ones, that doesn't always happen, so I’ve pretty much spent the past year trying to make our house as kid friendly as possible. And since I refuse to live in a Toys R us catalog, that meant thinking outside the box for user friendly, stylish ways to store toys, blankies, crafts and more. And I couldn’t be more thrilled with the little “stations” I’ve created all through our house. Added bonus- its super easy for our preschooler to put things away = she actually does it!

One of most favorite spaces is the cubicles in our living room. I’ve had this idea in my head forever, but couldn’t find the right piece of furniture to make it work. Then one day, while at Big Lots, I saw it! It was perrrrrrfect!! I added the baskets, with chalkboard labels of course, and now we have a toy storage/mini nursery area in our living room.This was especially helpful when the baby was born, I had a whole supply of diapers, wipes, creams, blankies, and toys within arms reach.


I love this entire space, the birdcage was an awesome find at a antique store, the bird came from our post thrift shop and the picture was a gift from my cousin- taken just two weeks before our little man made his entrance! Can’t you tell, I was {HUGE}

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The toy storage above is also in our loving room. It’s actually a wine cabinet and I pulled the wine dividers out and added baskets. The blanket storage idea I snagged from Thrifty Decor Chick {love her and her blog}

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The art supply storage is my latest and greatest invention. Our preschooler is seriously addicted to colored pencils and crayons {as is her mommy} so I had to find a way to corral them all, and still make them accessible.  A quick trip down the canning isle and I found my solution- 4 jars and a jar caddy. The table underneath houses coloring books, scissors and glue. Love it!!

The magazine rack came from a junk store somewhere forever ago, and we added it to the side of our island to keep the five thousand mags that we get off the counter. Perfect!


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Ok, so I saved the best for last. This is our laundry/mud room and I LoVe, LOVE, LoVe it!!! It’s small, which meant it needed to be functional, efficient and cheery. And i think I totally hit the mark on this, don’t you? All the boxes house tools, craft supplies, batteries, flashlights, and all that stuff that normally occupies a junk drawer. I added storage baskets for cleaning supplies, toilet papers, etc..  The baskets on top of the dryer are for lose socks, extra craft supplies and mending.

Buy my fave part are my {chalkboard label} bottles that house detergents and fabric softener. I also adore my little crocheted clothes line. How cute is that?


Do you have favorite little nooks and niches in your house? How do you corral toys and clutter?

Share  your ideas with me!

And remember, the giveaway from Tuesdays post is open through Sunday at midnight, don’t forget to enter!!

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