Friday, December 19, 2008

Graduation, Edward Cullen Plush Doll, Cookies and CPSIA !!

THIS POST IS REALLY LOOOOOONG... but bear with me, it gets AWESOME, I just couldn't stop myself today!!!

The day has arrived, my wonderful hubby of 5 years and father of my 2 little chitlens has finally graduamated!

He was so deboniar, my little Cum Laude extrodianare, who almost choked on his tassel as he walked across the stage! We have been college students our entire dating and marriage career, so now that he is done, we just don't know what to do with ourselves. I think I will go back, I only have about a year and a half left. (ps, don't I look CUTE in my Bella/Edward double breasted grey jacket?!)

Hopefully, he will get a job soon (prayers and warm energy/happy thoughts may help here), because I REALLY don't want to be stuck in our teeny 3RD FLOOR apartment for another 6 months! I NEED a craft room for my biz! I NEED seperate rooms for our boys! I NEED a backyard! I NEED carpet that doesn't smell like dog/little boy pee and walls that don't have yucky grime from past smokers seeping through the paint! I NEED a countertop that doesn't stab me in the collar bone EVERY time I walk into the kitchen! I NEED windows with NEW blinds that aren't shredded and folded shards of metal! I NEED storage! I NEED a bathtub that isn't hugging the toilet so I can GIVE baths! rant. ends. here. Of course, I am very thankful to be living in a safe and warm environment.

Edward Cullen Robert Pattinson RPats plush doll twilight new moon movie twilight jewelery bella bracelet

By the way, have you met Edward Cullen? I have! I made him for a custom order. I would have done him a little differently if it wasn't for a custom request (like the eyes and hair) but he is still cute, no? His outfit even matches Robert Pattinson's movie promo photo shoot. If you love him, I can make you one (I love you and all, but not for free silly!), and if you love Twilight, then come and browse my Jeweled Ambrosia Bella bracelets and Twilight jewelry!!

edward cullen robert pattinson twilight movie new moon stephenie meyer

Anywho, I thought I would celebrate by sharing a yummy recipe I happened upon. So enjoy!

Redonkulous Cookies Recipe

redonkulous cookies andies mints chocolaate

ps, Andies Mints, those drops of minty heaven works best in these!
pss, if you crave Girl Scout Thin Mints year round, then THESE Keebler Elves Grasshoppers will hold you over, my friends!! Oh, those naughty elves!

NOTE! Horrid lacy curtain is not mine, I ganked this image off the internet ;)

Matsutake Squirrel wooden pull toy

I thought it VERY important to post info about the CPSIA (Consumer Product Safety Improvement Act) testing that will be effecting us ALL in February 2009. It is a ridiculous safety test for toy/clothing makers of children (under the age of 12) that will drive prices to sky rocket as well as shut down MANY small business and stay at home moms. It would be MORE efficient to have raw materials already tested and not to import dangerous goods into the USA, but this is just another way for the gov to make some money. Read here for info and write your state reps to have this law amended!! HERE is a great post and HERE is another great post that breaks down testing product cost for the small time mom who makes bibs, hair bows and such, (warning, upsetting!) That means, you can't buy cute things such as THESE either EVER again, or not for a remotely affordable price! Also, this law will prohibit ANY donation or resale of used toys and clothing. That means no more donating to homeless shelters, Goodwill, no more selling your kids outgrown clothing to Kid ti Kid or on ebay, craigslist, gargage sales...

"Keep in mind as well, that is law will forbid fair trade in the US. There are literally thousands of families in developing countries, making beautiful and safe children' items, and selling them through fair trade initiatives such as Ten Thousand Villages. This law will eliminate the ability of women across the globe to support their families. This law will also make it illegal to recycle clothing of any kind, toys and all other children's items. The way that this legislation is written will force retailers to dump all untested inventory as of February 10. That could amount to millions of tons of pure waste in our country's landfills. To anyone who truly believes that this is unimportant, all I can say is that you are incredibly naive. This nation was built on the backs of entreprenuers... this law effectively kills the American dream for thousands of people." -lillipopsdesigns

Of course we want our toys and children to be safe and non toxic, but this law is designed to CRUSH the little guy and moake LOTS of money for large corporate monsters.

cute girl baby onesie bib shabby chic boutique

Fancy Bib Onesie by La Petite BeBe Boutique

I also wanted to show a piece from jewelry designer June Shin. She is a delight to work with, so take a peek at what she has to offer! If you love my jewelry designs, then you will love hers too!

One last cookie recipe from The Crocheted Baby (go check out her shop!!) I like how she gives the idea to wrap the top with colorful cellophane and tie with a bow, lollipop style. They would be cute like that in a little basket for party favors/yummy decor!

lollipop cookies sweets


1 pkg (10-12 ozs) vanilla or white chips
2 Tbps shortening, divided
1 pkg (16 ozs) chocolate and crème sandwich cookies (such as double-stuffed Oreos) – you’ll have some left over
24 wooden popsicle or craft sticks
1 cup (6 ozs) semisweet chocolate chips

In a microwave or double boiler, melt vanilla chips and 1 Tbsp shortening; stir until smooth. Twist apart 24 sandwich cookies. Dip the end of each popsicle stick into melted chips; place on a cookie half and top with another half. Place cookies on a waxed paper-lined baking sheet; freeze for 15 minutes.

Reheat vanilla chip mixture again if necessary; dip frozen cookies into mixture until completely covered. (You should run out of melted vanilla chips before all 24 cookies are dipped – just put them back in the freezer with the others for now.) Return the dipped cookies to the baking sheet; freeze 30 minutes longer.

Melt the chocolate chips and remaining shortening; stir until smooth. Drizzle over cookies. You should have enough leftover melted chocolate to dip those 4 or 5 ‘naked’ cookies. Store them in an airtight container - in the refrigerator if your house is warm."

homemade christmas ornament flet gingerbread man

Adorable Gingerbread Man ornament by Elsie Marley. Check out her shop for more wonderful things! Get the pattern HERE!

One LAST GOODIE... FREE printable tags from the WONDERFul Black Apple! Go HERE to get your free download :)

the black apple free download christmas gift tags

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Family Time: First Birthday, Christmas and Paying it Forward

santa claus
First time with Santa. Caleb was a little scared, Isaac was happy!

My baby turned ONE the other day. He is soo cute and sweet and calming, and is turning into a little climber. When we took him to get his one year shots, Issac was begging the nurse "NO cup (cut) baby!! Be Careful, don't hurt Cabib!!"... yes, he covered his eyes and actually tried to take the vaccine tray away from her as she was prepping. He must be a little scared from the scissors and stitches incident...

first birthday cake

Isaac helped make the birthday cake, he is so helpful, he just loves his little brother! Do you spy my Scentsy candle? Oh goodie, I got the Sugar Cookie melts and the Irish Cream car freshner and those make me so happy, I just want to smell them constantly!!

toddler baking cake scentsy candle

Okay, back to the subject at hand... As tradition that I started for my oldest child, on the first birthday, everyone in attendance got a sheet of paper and wrote him a letter for him to open when he turns 18. The letters consisted of testimonies, advice, sweet sentiments, encouragement and other great things. I created a little time capsule that I put these letters in, as well as other mementos that I will add to in his youth.

boy time capsule birthday traditions
Time Capsule by For Goodies Sake

Then, on his 18th birthday, he will open the capsule, and read all of the letters, look at all the pictures (and his friends will think, wow, your parents were hot back then! I jest...). In any case, I want this to be a tradition for each of my children and I hope I don't get {too} lazy over the years and forget/lose/accidentally give to Goodwill these letters, because they are true gems. For Calbe's birthday, we had fajitas and cake (I made it, got the wrong kind of icing so the polka-dots/number ran :( The family talked, laughed, and played the Wii. Go Grandmas, GO!!

baby opening presents

family playing wii women

Here, we decorated the Christmas tree. I usually do an all white/silver/blue shabby chic tree, or one year I did the jewel tone and antiqued gold Victorian tree, but this year, I wanted to do something cheery and bright because Isaac is really into it now. I am a tree perfectionist. I usually unload and reload the tree at LEAST three times every Christmas, but I relented some control and allowed my toddler to help.

red and white shabby chic christmas decorating

He handed me ornaments and tried to name them as he gave them to me to hang. Oh, the hilarity of it all when he picked up a crazy heart ornament I made as a youth and tried to figure out, "what tha heck is this thing!?". His facial expressions slayed us as we watched the video over and over again (only the first minute of the video, you can shut off the rest). Enjoy!!

And, no, I did not borrow ornaments from the back of the tree (thus making it lean forward) for the sheer beauty of a fully stocked photo, and no, I did not get the majority of my ornaments at Micheal's/Joann's 90% off after Christmas sale last year. As for my singular shelf of which I can decorate, I wanted to make a lovely Nesting Place style garland, but alas I could not find my greenery box and the shelf wouldn't hold that much weight anyways, so I used my feather boa and a strand of red wooden beads. I consider the decorations as part of the garland!

traditional cunky christmas tree

But hey, look at what I DID get! At the Antique Mall, I got these cute card ornaments. All you do, is take cards cut out the front and glue it onto a foam board and then, cut out the back of the card (the part with the message on the inside) and glue that to the back of the foam board so the message is on the back. Then, you punch holes in the top and string in some tulle for a loop and a bow. Now, glue and glitter that puppy up and you are set. Makes great and inexpensive gifts for neighbors, friends and family.

handmade christmas gifts ornaments

The other two ornaments I made last year. I got some paper mache ornaments, painted them and added trims and ribbon. The snowflakes are brads that I cut the backs off and glued them on. I went for the whole robin's egg blue, red and white theme, because, really, is there anything better?

aqua blue red vintage czech glass pod dangle earrings
Vintage Red Czech Glass Pod Earrings by Jeweled Ambrosia

Also, I started my shop on Lollishops. It is fun over there, but a little more confusing than Etsy because there is the main site, than the Ning public blog, than the Ning vendors only blog, then the Flickr group... it's just a little much. As a seller, I feel like a newbie for the first time again. I do gotta say though, that listing an item for sell is a snap, where as on Etsy, it is this major production, so I LOVE that! Compare my two stores and let me know what style you prefer in the comments. Honestly though, every time I go to the Antique Mall, I wish I would be able to have my own little booth! Oh, I would LOVE THAT- has anyone done that before??!!

Jeweled Ambrosia at Etsy vs. my new Jeweled Ambrosia at Lollishops

Friends Help You Fly by Fannie Narte

Also, I want to inspire everyone to Pay it Forward today. The other day, someone wrote me such a nice letter, and it came at the perfect time, when I needed a bit of uplifting. And yesterday, my mom was at Braum's and the guy helping her was so kind and nice (unusual for the particular location.) He even helped an elderly lady to her car. Well, my mom called and wanted to let the management know she appreciated him. They were so happy, that corporate found out and took the boy out and even gave him a special gift for a reward. All because of a phone call!!

Friends Help You Fly by Fannie Narte
What can we do today to Pay it Forward? Do you have a friend/relative/neighbor/local clerk that may need a boost? An anonymous letter or note. An overdue apology or phone call.

There was an elderly man who was the grocery cart getter at our grocery store, and I saw him get out of his car one day, so I left him a little "Thank You note" and a flower in his car windshield... Maybe, while you are scraping your car windshield, you can go and scrape someone's else's? If you are an Etsian, buy from a new seller with no sells, you can find them by using the "undiscovered" Pounce feature! Offer to babysit, bring someone some cookies, or a bag of groceries... Honestly, sometimes it helps to pray, so that you will be guided to know who needs an extra bit of help. I hope everyone has the opportunity to serve someone in some way today. Not only will it warm them, but it will warm you inside as well.

Thursday, December 4, 2008

Giveaway, Midgets and a Crazy Mouse

Sleepwalk print by Serpent Mandalas

Have I ever told you that my husband sleep walks? I haven't? Well, I will give you TWO crazy examples and then tell you about last night.

When we were first married, I awoke, being thrown out of bed, flying through the air and hitting my head on our dresser. Fortunately, my husband's body softened the fall. Apparently, he dreamt I was about to be hit by a speeding bus in his dream, and he was saving my life by throwing me out of the way, what a superhero. Thanks, hon!

Superman print by the amazing Mikiep

Another time, I awoke to a bouncing bed. He was jumping up and down on the bed vigoursly while attaking the ceiling. Little white ceiling popcorn paint chips were all over the place. When I asked what he was doing, he frantically replied something along these lines, "There are plastic sporks coming down on us!" Apparently, some crazy mutant plastic sporks were sneaking up on us and stuck in the ceiling, and yet again, he was saving the day. (I hope the spork wasn't as big as this one from Paul Pape Designs!)

Back to the present. I am on the computer (suprised?) and he is laying on the couch waiting for me. He falls asleep. All of a sudden, he jerks awake and speaks gibberish to me for a minute or so (completely normal for him).

Cute little gnome stamp from Niko Art not quite a midget, but the cutest related thing I could find and still be respectful :)

He screws up his nose and says "Who is in that chair with you? I don't see them anymore, did they leave? Oh, there they are, how can you both fit in that chair? Is there a someone in your chair with you?"

I simply reply, "Yes."

He says, "Really? No... NO! She must be a midget then or something. Why don't you come over here then. Shoot my legs off and carry me around, you little midget lover."

Then, he falls back asleep. I suppose, in sleep theory, by removing his legs, he would then be midget like and I would love him too, like my midget companion that was sharing my seat with me? Weird, huh? But seriously, that is not very weird compared to all of the other sleepwalking/talking events I have encountered in these last 5 years if marriage.

Okay, here is another cute little family thing. We finally figured out how to upload video from our digital camera. Too bad it was after I had already erased our UFO sighting video!! He did a little crazy mouse puppet playtime with Isaac (who has named the mouse Pinky Roo). It's cute and 5 minutes long, so take a look if you want to watch. (Yes, I am on the computer again working on my Etsy shop, Bad Mommy!)

Now, the reason for this post, Jennifer of Elegant Journey is hosting a giveaway on her blog for this lovely button print. She is a sweet designer with pretty art and a much less cluttered blog then mine! Go and enter her giveaway and browse around, she has some cute stuff!

Also, my Thanksgiving feast with my husband's sweet family. We didn't do boring turkey this year, we did FONDUE!! Enjoy our pics, b/c it was Yumm-o!

fried chocolate, sooo good!

PS, the wonderful Contrariwise (wonderful metal jewelery designer) has an excellent article on getting your products to show up in Google image searches (I use that all the time!) HERE is how to do it. I am going to try it right now with this vintage style rose shabby chic flower cameo locket necklace!

vintage style rose flower shabby chic cameo locket necklace
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