Tuesday, August 31, 2010

don't forget

Don't forget about ebay. There is so much stuff out there! I got a brand new iPhone cover for like $3.99. So much better than paying $40 in the store.

Monday, August 30, 2010


While browsing Design Mom I came upon her post about Another Lunch. Nice inspiration for the day, too bad the kindergartners at Brody's school have to take snack in a disposable container this year otherwise I would be purchasing a bento box for sure.


Did you know that rice krispy treats are super good with frosting on top? I had no idea until I received a cute frosted treat as a favor from a baby shower... it was sooooo yummy. Maybe I can add this as a new dimension to holiday cookie decorating?

Sunday, August 29, 2010

soy sauce anyone?

I was lucky enough to hang out with a fun mom today and she told me about something she did that I think is brilliant! Her son was past the 1 year mark and still wanted to nurse all the time, he would claw at her and she was sick of it. So she applied some soy sauce before she nursed him (of course he had no idea). He was really confused why it tasted so salty and decided he didn't like it and stopped nursing from then on! Maybe this is a practice that is well known, but I haven't heard of it and I think it's super great. She told me when she had her baby #2, her son asked if the new baby liked salty milk (she told him yes). Kids are hilarious and adaptable and moms are so smart!

mommy talk

(i found this pic on my computer, not sure what i was doing or why i took it)

I say this phrase a lot to my husband, "I'm doing the best I can." When I think about it, no matter how hard the situation is, of course it's not entirely true. What I mean to say is, "I am exhausted and I don't want to do any more" or "I am doing the best I can for right now". But I know (because I am a mom) that I could have done more. I could have played with the kids more, taught them more, made a better dinner and so on and so forth. It's hard for people to understand that we aren't just a mom... we are often a mom to multiple kids that have different needs, a wife, perhaps a single mom, a friend, a family member, we might work full time, own our own business, etc. We sure wear a lot of hats right?

Guilty.... do you ever feel this as a mom? Maybe I am just a perfectionist (which I am) but I always feel like I could have done more or done better. How do we get rid of this guilt? I look at all my mom friends and I know how lucky their kids and husbands are to have them. I think about all the kids whose parents neglect them.... my kids are so fortunate! So maybe we just need to know that we are awesome and our kids are so lucky to live in a loving, fun and safe home. Maybe we should give ourselves small goals for the week, take things one step at a time instead of trying to fill every role, all the time. Being a mom is a big responsibility and we have a lot on our shoulders. I feel it weighing me down because I want the best for my kids (academically, in sports, dinners, play dates, etc.). One day at a time moms! None of us have it all together and we shouldn't feel guilty for that (and don't let other moms pretend they do have it all together, they are lying).

So I am going to give myself small weekly goals instead of trying to accomplish everything all the time (I just end up exhausted and upset).

My small goals for this week:
1. Do all the laundry in the house
2. Work on a few more chapters in Brody's Kindergarten workbook
3. Work on Piper's colors
4. Buy Brody school shoes

Maybe next week will be:
1. Work on potty training with Piper
2. Cook 2 new healthy meals that week
3. Read a chapter book each night before bed
4. Play board games with the kids during the day more

So all you moms out there.....you are doing a GREAT job, I know it! Give yourself a break and don't exhaust yourself by trying to do everything right now. You are already a Super Mom!


Thursday, August 26, 2010


For all you Southern California residents, have you ever been to the Whole Foods Market at The District in Tustin? Holy cow it's AMAZING and gigantic. I visited it today and was on a limited time schedule, I couldn't even shop the whole store! I cannot wait to go back, it's totally worth the drive and there is so much to explore and different foods to try. Their hot food section is to-die-for. Brody liked the dessert bar the best (I didn't let him see they had a gelato section too).

Whole Foods- Jamboree Store
2847 Park Avenue
Tustin, CA 92782

salt and sweet

Have you tried a version of this yet? Caramels in chocolate with sea salt on top..... yummy! I read about them in a magazine because Hilary Duff used them as part of her wedding favors, and then when I saw them at the Theo Chocolate Factory in Seattle and I had to purchase a box. Perfect balance of sweet and salt. I can't remember what brand Hilary's were, but a lot of chocolatiers make them!

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

school bags

In our school district kindergartners take canvas totes instead of backpacks to school. Each school has their own school canvas bag for purchase, but what's the fun in that? (Although they are pretty cute). Anyhow I wanted to get Brody something he would like and no better place to search than etsy.com. I found so many great choices by searching under "canvas bag" and then I looked under a bunch of sub categories such as "children's" and "tote bags". There are a million options and even if your child doesn't need them you could get a cute one for the family or for dance class. Most of them were around $10. Brody picked the robot one above and I will personalize it myself with his name. Cute!

back to school

Do you have a child going to school where they will have a locker? Are you worried about them forgetting their combination? Here are two kinds of new locks from Master Lock to help. The top set is called the Master Lock Keyless Precision Dial. I like it because you can use letters and numbers to pick your combo! Plus it has a master key which makes it easy to change the combo if you need to. I think it's much easier to use a code with letters than numbers, but note, it only has 10 of the letters on it. I also love the colors it comes in!

The other lock is the Master Lock Speed Dial. This one is totally cool because it does not require numbers or letters. The lock is set by moving the center dial up and down or side to side. You can choose your combination yourself! It also comes with stickers that you can use with shapes, colors, letters so you you can put them on and make a combination that way. I never had cool locks growing up.

By the way- Mark is so stoked on these locks. He loves having these kinds of things around the house.... I guess they are not just for back to school!

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

great book for little girls

While at the bookstore in Seattle, I saw this book (My Name Is Not Isabella by Jennifer Fosberry) on the shelf and thought it looked adorable, but I was in a hurry and couldn't stop to read it. You have no idea how delighted I was to see it on my desk to review when I returned from my trip! I love the premises for this book, a little girl pretending to be famous women from history on an ordinary day. Some of the women she pretended to be were Sally Ride, Rosa Parks, and Marie Curie to name a few. The best part is that there is a page in the back that tells in more detail what each woman did. What a great story for little girls! And, I love the illustrations!

Monday, August 23, 2010


I Just got back from Seattle and here are my favs from my trip. Luckily my host and hostess (and amazing friends) have great taste, so I came back with lots of favs! My favorite part of Seattle, it seemed like everything was organic from their coffee to their grocery stores. Great choices on every corner!

#1- JASON Powersmile All Natural Whitening CoQ10 Toothe Gel. This toothpaste is awesome because it is pure, natural & organic. It also has fluoride for cavity fighting!

#2- Portage Bay Cafe
2821 NW Market
Seattle, WA 98107
I went here for breakfast. I had the BEST Organic Apple and Whole Wheat Pancakes. This cafe uses an array of food sources from local, clean and sustainable farms and producers. They also have a toppings bar to add as much fruits, nuts, butter and organic maple syrup as you want!

#3- La Carta de Oaxaca
5431 Ballard Avenue NW
Seattle, WA 98107
Their food is cuisine from Oaxaca, Mexico. Not only is it fresh and delicious, it is at a great price. There is a lot of thought and love that goes into this restaurant. Such great mexican food!

#4- PCC Natural Markets- it's the largest consumer-owned natural food retail co-operative in the United States. I was in awe because it is beautiful inside with amazing organic produce, a great variety of natural foods and the best looking deli/bakery I have ever seen. I wish we had one!!

#5- Tuta Bella Neopolitan Pizzeria
4411 Stone Way North
Seattle, WA 98103
Pizza Today's 2010 Indie Pizzeria of the Year. SO GOOD!

#6- Theo Chocolate
3400 Phinney Avenue North
Seattle, WA 98103
206 632.5100
Only organic, fair trade, bean-to-bar chocolate factory in the US. You can go on a factory tour or just visit their store on site and get free chocolate tastings. Fun!

#7- Lavender hand soap- I loved smelling my friend Christy's Method Lavender Hand Soap

#8- Dirty Dozen App from the Environmental Working Group- it's free for your iPhone and will be your shopper's guide to which fruits and vegetables you need to buy organic! A must have for every mom (and dad).

#9- D'Ambrosio Gelato
5339 Ballard Ave NW
Seattle, WA 98107
Do you like banana? This was the best gelato combination I ever had. The Banana Frutta & Bacio di Dama (Women's Kiss). Try it, trust me.

#10- Thanks to Joel for introducing me to Spezi. In Germany they love cola with orange soda. Pepsi and Coke make their own versions. Joel made me some with Coke and Fanta. It was good!

#11- The best travel companion ever. Baby #3 and I had the best time with our friends....he got lots of special time, which is important for the third child! I loved sharing this trip with him.

winners announced

To see the winners of the Week of Giveaways, please scroll down and look at the bottom of every post!

Thank you to all who entered!

By the way, do you ever wonder how I pick the winners of my giveaways? I go here and use their True Random Number Generator. I put in the number of entries (if I have 16 comments, I put 1 in the min and 16 in the max) and then I press generate. Whatever number it gives me, I count the comments in order of them being received (first comment is 1 and last comment is 16) and that is how I pick the winner. Super fair and super easy.

It's Monday!

Hi Friends! I will be traveling home from Seattle today, so check back later for the winners of my Week of Giveaways and a post about my favs in Seattle.


Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Last Giveaway!

This is my last giveaway for the week! I am giving away a set of 25 Family Notecards! You can see them in the image below. Just leave a comment and you are entered! Don't forget you can still enter all of my giveaways for the week. All winners will be announced on Monday the 23rd. Good luck!

Me and the baby are off to visit a friend for a long weekend! I can't wait!

Congratulations to The Boyd Family! Please contact me so we can get your Family Notecards ordered!

Giveaway #5

The nice people at Sakar International have provided us with a great giveaway! They teamed up with Nickelodeon to create the Dora the Explorer Talking Digital Camera (MSRP $29.99) – Perfect for little kids, this organically shaped camera includes a software suite and interactive functionality as well as a number of built-in phrases from Dora, activated by pressing certain buttons. Cute right?

Just leave a comment thru Sunday, August 22nd. Winners will be announced on Monday the 23rd, so check back! Good luck!

Congratulations to Eva! Please contact me so I can have your new Dora Digital Camera sent to you!

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

wednesday giveaway

Giveaway week is fun! Make sure you scroll down to the other giveaways, you can enter all of them throughout the week! So keep adding comments.

Today I am giving away a personalized address stamp! You can go to my blog here to see all of the choices. These stamps retail for $40, so comment, comment, comment! Good luck and check back on Monday, August 23rd to see all the winners!

Congratulations to Sarah! Please contact me so we can get your personalized stamp ordered!

giveaway #3

Today's giveaway comes from the great people at Rock 'N Learn, the secret tool to teach kids reading skills, math, science and more. Have you ever wondered why your kids have no problem learning all the words to a song but have trouble learning their school work (I know I have)? Music can help with catchy tunes to help them improve.

How did Rock 'N Learn come about? In the mid-80s, brothers Richard and Brad Caudle (one a school psychologist and the other a musician/composer) teamed up to create it. Over 20 years later, Rock ‘N Learn has grown to be the country's #1 educational video program, used in millions of homes and schools nationwide.

Rock 'N Learn is giving away one Phonics Volume 1 DVD and one Phonics Volume 2 DVD to one lucky reader! Cool right? To win just leave a comment and remember to come back on Monday, August 23rd to see if you won!

Congratulations to The Duff Family! Please contact me with your address and I will have the DVDs sent to your house!

Monday, August 16, 2010

giveaway #2

Back-to-school time is upon us! I can't believe I am sending my baby to kindergarten this year. I am thrilled. But one thing I am not thrilled about is germs.

“Scientists estimate that 80 percent of all infectious diseases are transmitted through hands, so it’s important for children to learn to keep their hands clean all year long,” said renowned pediatrician and author of more than 40 books on childcare, William Sears, M.D. “Soap and water are not always accessible throughout the school day, so an effective way to keep hands clean and germ-free is to use an antibacterial wipe like Wet Ones® hand wipes, which parents can pack in lunchboxes and book bags.”

In addition to teaching children about clean hands, parents can follow other simple tips to start the new school year off on the right foot. Dr. Sears offers the following five tips to keep students healthy, from brain to body:

1. Begin the Day with a Brainy Breakfast: Children who start the day with a “brainy breakfast” that includes protein, fiber-filled carbs, Omega-3 fats and minerals like calcium and iron, do better in school and have fewer sick days.

2. Keep Hands Clean: The first and easiest line of defense against the spread of germs is washing hands often, but when soap and water are not available, antibacterial wipes like Wet Ones® hand wipes are an effective alternative. Wet Ones® antibacterial wipes are proven to be just as effective as gel hand sanitizer in killing 99.99 percent of germs but they also clean away dirt and messes and won’t dry out skin like alcohol-based hand sanitizers. Keep them around the house, in lunchboxes and in pockets.

3. Feed Your Child Immune-Boosting Foods: The best way to boost the immune system is to increase the intake of fruits, vegetables, seafood and yogurt.

4. Keep Little Noses and Sinuses Clear: Germs often settle first in the nose and sinuses, so it’s important to keep kids’ nasal passages clear by either flushing them out with a saltwater solution or loosening secretions with a facial steamer or vaporizer.

5. Keep Your Children Active: Movement mobilizes the immune system. Kids who sit too much – especially indoors – get sick more often. Movement also mellows the mood, as stress depresses the immune system.

Our giveaway today is provided by WetOnes Antibacterial Hand Wipes! One lucky reader will have a WetOnes Antibacterial Hands & Face Wipes Canister sent directly to them. Something so small, but totally worth it. To win just leave a comment! Remember to come back on Monday, August 23rd to see if you won!

Congrats to Jen C! Please contact me so I can have your Wet Ones sent to you!

Saturday, August 14, 2010

giveaway week!

I am excited to have some good giveaways for you this week!

Giveaway #1 is a new fav I previously posted about. Piggy Paints! Piggy Paint is a natural, eco-friendly nail polish designed for fancy girls. It is non-toxic, hypoallergenic formula makes it safe to use on all piggies...it's as Natural as Mud! We have already been using piggy paints and love them. One lucky reader will receive a $15 gift code to use on anything at the Piggy Paint website! Woohoo! To win just leave a comment! Remember to come back on Monday, August 23rd to see if you won!

Besides a great giveaway, Piggy Paints has also offered all my readers a 10% off coupon code to use online in their store, including sale items AND if you spend over $35 domestic shipping is free. Just use the coupon code CREATIVE10L at checkout, it expires October 31, 2010.

You should also follow Piggy Paints on Facebook & Twitter for secret sales and special offers! I just followed them on both!

Leave a comment below and good luck!

Congratulations to Suzanne Jeanette! Please email me to receive your $15 gift code!

Friday, August 13, 2010

sneak peek

If you are my Facebook friend you probably already saw these, but here is a sneak peek at my 2010 Christmas Card designs. I still have a lot more to do but it's a good start. More info to come, but please keep me in mind for your Holiday Cards this year! And remember, most of my clients order custom cards, so there is that option too!

Thursday, August 12, 2010


I was hired to help coordinate a wedding that is coming up. I adore the happy couple and I am having a lot of fun helping them pull everything together. I came across this image from a wedding online and I love the idea of a wishbox, it's even better in a vintage suitcase. We are definitely doing something similar. What a great visual at the reception! I also love it for other occasions like birthday parties, sip & sees, engagements parties, showers, etc.

summer learning

This cutie is starting Kindergarten in a few weeks. I can't believe it! My baby is growing up.

After two years of preschool under his belt I know that he is ready to start Kindergarten, but I still worry that I haven't worked with him enough this summer to get him prepared. Are any of you worried about the same thing?

I picked up this Brain Quest Workbook at Costco last weekend. I am totally excited about it. It gives us something to do together and hopefully will remind me to make sure I am doing my job as a parent. With three kids, things get put on the back-burner. With a baby in the mix, everything is just about getting through the day. Anyhow, this book retails for $12.95 but I got it for $7.99. We start it tomorrow.

Tuesday, August 10, 2010


Thinking about Fall already! This black Toms shoe is one of their new styles in the Fall Collection. I plan on purchasing these (or asking for them as a gift)

Here is a partial screen shot of some more. Go here to check them all out.

my etsy shop is open!

I did it, I finally opened my etsy shop! I am so excited! Please visit me at:

Tell your friends too! I will be updating and adding to the shop often. Let me know what you think of it.