November 29, 2010

Cyber Monday, Ad Space, and Handmade HOLLA! Days

Hello lovelies.
How was your Thanksgiving?
Mine was wonderful...we hosted it at our house and my dad and I cooked My brothers were home for a few days from San Francisco (where they both go to school), and my uncles came in from all over Southern California. It was a Thanksgiving full of testosterone, but I was very thankful to have everyone over.
And to end a wonderful week perfectly, Hubby and I took full advantage of the Ikea Playland and had a mini date while the kids ran wild played nicely with other children.
We even took a gazillion photos randomly throughout the store.
Because we're weird like that.

If those wine bottles weren't empty, if the wine glasses weren't covered in price tags, and if there weren't 20 people sharing the prop kitchen behind me, I can assure you that our date would have been much more relaxing. But alas, none of that happened, and our free Ikea childcare was only good for an hour.

Moving on...

Do you have ad space here? If not, I am still running my holiday pricing and offer stats for your button to let you know how many views your webpage has received via my site. Contact me for more info!

Speaking of good things on the cheap...I will be starting a new little segment on my bloggity blog called "Handmade HOLLA! Days". (Button coming soon.) Starting December 1st and running through December 20th, I will be posting my favorite handmade gift ideas via Etsy, Big Cartel, and tutorials from bloggers like you. I will feature an item under $10, under $25, under $50, and under $100. I will then feature a tutorial of something you could make yourself with your mad crafting skills.
The holidays are here!

Oh, and because today is Cyber Monday, I am taking a whopping 50% off of everything in my shop today until 12:00 AM EST. Simply type "MONDAY" in the notes to seller option at checkout, and you'll be refunded HALF of your purchase price.
You're welcome.

Happy Monday!

November 25, 2010

Please Give This Holiday Season- Nate Needs You

My sweet friend Kathy Eller is going to kill me for posting this.
She asked me to help create a button that could guide people to a friend of her's site that is donating a portion of her sales to Kathy's family.
I created the button.
And now I am taking things a step further.

Kathy's son Nate is 14. He was disgnosed with a rare disease called Scleroderma Coupe de Sabre about a year ago, and is in constant pain. He is changing physically, and the changes that are taking place are happening on the first place you notice on someone- his face. Kathy tells me constantly that she is trying to stay positive. After my husband's accident this summer, I looked at him in his wheelchair and was determined to stay positive. It is physically and emotionally exhausting trying to stay upbeat while you watch someone you love struggle with pain and confusion about their condition. I have no idea what that feeling is like as a mother. I pray for her strength everyday, and continue to pray for Nate.

Kathy told me that she was on the list to be a part of an amazing thing- she was going to add a foreign exchange student to her home of five children. She was on the waiting list for so long that when the phone call came, it was too late; the medical bills already piled up and she had no extra funds to take on another tummy to feed. In fact, the woman who called her about the program ending up donating a turkey to Kathy's family after hearing that she was having a hard time putting food on the table. I hate to put Kathy on blast, but I have been there, and she knows it. My husband once worked two jobs while I was pregnant and I went to school full time, and our weekends were spent catching up on sleep and praying that we would make ends meet by the time rent was due. Everyone hits a rough patch at one time or another, but when you hit a rough patch and have support, it makes all the difference.
Let's be Kathy's support system.

This holiday season, please take the time to say a prayer for Nate. For his pain. For his family that struggles to pay for his treatments and appointments. For his family that yearns for strength to stay positive and keep the household full of children upbeat.

If you can go a step further, please visit Jules and Little Girl Pearls for your holiday shopping. Both sites offer beautiful hand crafted jewelry, and 20% of your total sale will be donated to the Eller family if you enter the code NATE at checkout. This promo code is good Friday November 26, 2010 through Friday December 10, 2010.

If you've had your eye on something in my shop, Friday is the time to shop. We have our own heap of medical bills, but I want to do what I can to help out. On Black Friday, everything in my shop will be 25% off when you enter the code FRIDAY at checkout. (A refund will be issued for 25% of your total after payment is received.) The best part of stocking up with a discount code? 100% of everything sold on Friday November 26, 2010 will be donated to the Eller's. No code needed- every penny made on Black Friday will go directly to help Kathy's family.

If you want to participate and include your own shop to offer a percentage of your proceeds, please contact Kathy. Also, if you are able to send them a meal, a kind word, or a penny, everything counts. You can reach her here:
Eller [at] ILoveJesus [dot] net
or you can contact me and I can guide you to her.

If you can't donate or shop, I ask that you please add this button to your page as long as you can. Spreading the word may get this family the help that they need and deserve.


Simply paste the code from the box above into any HTML area of your blog. The more people that read his story- the more people to shop on his behalf- the more people to contact all helps. I ask you to help. And I thank you in advance on this Thanksgiving.
I am so thankful for you.
For reading my blog.
For helping out.
For being a part of something wonderful.

November 24, 2010

What I Whipped Up Wednesday Linky Party- Week 5

Last week we had a fantastic turn out!
Can I just tell you how happy it makes me seeing so many wonderful projects side by side?
Yup, happy.
Here are a few of my favorites from last week:

Erin, feel free to stop creating amazing pieces. Okay, don't. But really, you are sweet and pretty and talented... it's pretty much unheard of.

Dana painted her countertops. Umm...amazing. I wish that I could paint my ugly not so fancy countertops in my kitchen, but it's just not an option with the grout. This is a fab idea and perfect for a kitchen makeover on a tight budget.

Kassi made this adorable rope vase and plans to make more to decorate her wedding. (She's planning her wedding. How fun is that?!) She's also new to the blogging world, so stop by and say hi. :)

Want to see what I whipped up this week?

I know, it's been a while since I have come up with something new.
More things are in the works, but my new ultra high resolution Family Tree Prints make me pretty proud. (It's okay to be proud of yourself, right?)

Let's get to it...

The rules:
Must be your project...any craft, recipe, makeover, or idea you want to show off.
Must be linked to the specific blog post; not just your blog's url.
Feel free to grab the button so that others can link up too!


*What I Whipped Up Wednesday will now be open all day Wednesday and all day Thursday, then you'll have time to link up to my sweet friends' linky parties that open on Fridays here and here.*

Happy Wednesday!
{And Happy Thanksgiving! I am on the same schedule as Nordstrom and haven't even thought about Christmas since we are appreciating all that Thanksgiving brings. Having said that, you can bet your bottom dollar that I will be decking the halls come Friday.}

November 22, 2010

Santa Key Giveaway by Fingerprints on the Fridge

Rachelle from Fingerprints on the Fridge is offering one of my readers a pretty Santa Key from her shop Little Fingerprints.
{happy dance}

Description by Rachelle:
Have a house with no chimney? Have a little one who wants to be sure that Santa will be able to get in anyway? The Santa Key! This magical key can be set out on your front door Christmas Eve, just in time to make sure the big guy can get in! With a little snowflake bell you might even be able to hear when he comes over! Can also be used as an adorable ornament. Made with a replicated skeleton key and tons of glitter it definitely feels magical.

Umm, hellooooo...cutest idea ever!
Want one?
You have several ways to win!

Leave a comment here.
Tweet/Facebook/Blog about the giveaway by @SugarAndDots and leave me a comment telling me that you did: one entry per tweet/facebook/blog post.
Follow this blog or let me know that you already follow.
Follow Rachelle's blog or let me know that you already follow.

Easy peasy.

November 19, 2010

I will never have another 2 year old.

When you know for a fact that you will never have more children, life becomes different.
When The Girl was little, my visions of "someday" included a large family.
I saved baby clothes.
I planned nurseries in my mind.
I picked out a list of names that coordinated together.
When my baby name list was shortened to one and no longer needed, I stopped picturing "someday" in my mind.
While lying in bed with The Boy tonight, I was planning on updating my Facebook with "Kimmie is lying in her two-year-old's bed and is thankful that he is no longer in a toddler bed."
Instead, as I typed on my cell phone in the dark with a stupid little smile on my face, I suddenly realized that I will never have a 2 year old again.
Today is The Boy's birthday.
Today, meaning it is now midnight.
I will never blame a temper-tantrum on the terrible two's.
I will never again say, "she/he will be 3 in [insert month]".
I will never again shop for 2T clothing for a child of my own.
As I type, I have tears falling from my eyes, a lump in my throat, and an ache in my heart.
And yes, I know...I know...I am so very fortunate to have more than one child.
I just wish that they would stay little longer.
Really, the newborn/infant/wobbly toddler time is much too short.
Toothless grins and chubby baby legs...
Diaper-only days and tummy-time...
All of those moments flee much too quickly.

Here is the first photo ever taken of him:

And here is he is now:

I love this boy.
And I love that he is laughing hysterically in the above photo...I can practically hear it when I look at that picture.

Enjoy your day with your little ones, your loved ones, your "someday", and your "never agains"... all of those things make you the person you are.

And happy birthday, Bug.
You are such an amazing child...I am so thankful that you are mine.

November 18, 2010

Thankful on Paper- Week 2 (and a free printable)

I missed out on posting about Thankful on Paper last week, but I sent out five thankful notes.
This week I wrote three.
This week I wrote to my daughter's elementary school's secretary, my aunt, and my neighbor Debbie.

(My first thankful letter.)

Since I'm so addicted to Etsy, I have been browsing ideas for personal stationary.
I can't make up my mind.
Instead, I created a little something for my Thankful on Paper process:

If you'd like, you can click on the above "thankful" image, click again until it's full size, and right-click to save it for yourself. It prints onto 8.5"x11" paper, and makes for a neat little note even after Rachel's series is complete.

I applaud those who give thanks.
I hope you'll join in and participate. Even if you don't blog about it, being thankful and appreciating others is such a wonderful experience.

Happy Thursday, friends.

November 17, 2010

What She Wore Wednesday #8 and #9

I'm behind.
Let's get to it...

Monday November 2, 2010

Jacket: It's made by someone fancy, but I can't remember whom. I'd go look, but I don't want to get up. I'll update after I finish my coffee and get off my booty.
Top: Lincoln Thrift
Cami: Justice
Skirt: Yard sale
Tights: Nordstrom Rack
Shoes: Payless
Hair clip: Random store in LA

Tuesday November 2, 2010

Jacket: Christmas 2007 present
Turqouise tank: Target
Yellow tank: Walmart
Skirt: Lincoln Thrift
Tights: H&M
Shoes: Walmart
Hair clip: eBay years ago

Wednesday November 3, 2010

Top: Walmart
Skirt: Goodwill
Shoes: Craigslist
Hair clip: Made by me

Thursday November 4, 2010

On this day, she woke up and said she was really tired.
I sent her to school anyway, and 2 hours later, I was called to pick her up with a 101 degree fever.
Good mom: FAIL.
Top: Birthday present
Skirt: Lincoln Thrift
Shoes: Hand me downs
Hair clip: eBay

{Absent Friday}
{Awful weekend}
{Absent Monday}

Tuesday November 9, 2010

Top: Hand me down
Jeans: Target
Shoes: Payless
Hair clip: Made by me

Thought I'd jump in twice this week since I missed my usual Friday outfit...
Jacket: Random store by my house
Top: Tilly's
Jeans: Yard sale
Flip flops: Walmart

Wednesday November 10, 2010

Jacket: Shop in LA
Pants: Hand me downs
Shoes: Payless
Hair clip: Another shop in LA

Top and Jeans: Hand me downs (Rad, huh?!)
Shoes: Nordstrom Rack
Necklace: Made by me
Dark circles under my eyes: Made by The Boy

{No school Thursday for Veteran's Day, or Friday for non-student day.}

Happy Wednesday, fashionistas!
If you haven't already, be sure to link up your What I Whipped Up Wednesday projects here!

What I Whipped Up Wednesday Linky Party- Week 4

Last week's projects were amazing.
All of them.
I've been to a few linky parties where I think quite a few things are...umm...not amazing.
Every single linked up post made me fall in love.
Want to see my favorites?

I have no idea how Erin makes this, so I may have to buy one from her shop.
Or beg her for one.

And really, I think that Wendy is trying to get her porch featured on my blog every week. ;)
This rug is lovely and I know the perfect place to buy a monogrammed letter for a matching wreath!

How cute is this little wooden pilgrim by Mariah?
I am wayyy too lazy to make this.
Thankfully, she thinks of people like me and offers them in her Etsy shop!

This has been an incredible week for me, so to spread some of the love, I will be leaving this linky up until Thursday night this week.
Holy craziness, I know.
And I have a few things up my sleeve for next week.

The rules:
Must be your project...any craft, recipe, makeover, or idea you want to show off.

Must be linked to the specific blog post, not just your blog's url.

Feel free to grab the button so that others can link up too!


Happy Wednesday!

November 16, 2010

I love aprons.

It's no secret that I adore Etsy.
If I were a gazillionaire, I would spend most of my time browsing Etsy, adding items to Favorites, and filling up my mailbox with Etsy happiness.
Instead, I keep an Internet Explorer folder stocked with links of lovely Etsy items.
I visit this folder regularly and wonder who the buyer is after my beloved favorite item has been sold.
I wonder if they will love the item as much as I would have.
I wonder if they ordered poolside at their fabulous heated indoor swimming pool while eating desserts topped with real gold.
I can only imagine that all of my favorite items get snatched up by gazillionaires, otherwise I become green with envy.
Green isn't pretty on me.
Today I went through my IE Etsy Folder and discovered that I had over twenty links to aprons.
I had no idea that I loved them so much.
Apparently I do.
I thought I'd share with you the one thing I'm terrified to ever attempt to sew myself: the full-size adult apron.

Love them.
Or maybe I just love that Etsy shop.
I need an apron.
Which is your favorite?

Don't forget to link up your projects tomorrow for What I Whipped Up Wednesday!

November 15, 2010

The Girl's Room

Before I begin, I need to express my gratitude to you all.
What a wonderful weekend I've had.
My biggest blog mention to date, a wonderful birthday, and a night out with my husband and best friend- just the three of us.
The kind words from friends and family has been such a gift.
But the sweetness from my new followers, fellow bloggers, and strangers has been astounding.
You have all made me feel like a million bucks.
I thank very much.

When I posted my tutu bedskirt tutorial, I received a ton of emails from people curious about what The Girl's bedroom looked like.
A couple of weeks ago I tackled that crazy mess that she called her room, and rearranged all of the furniture.
Since The Boy got a bedroom makeover blogged, I figure I should forever capture this little girl room by blogging it as well.
Because one day soon she will rearrange it to her liking.
The kitten poster will be replaced with that of a teen singer or actor.
Her fairytale books will be replaced with vampire novels.
(Or whatever becomes popular.)
So here it is, forever frozen in time thanks to technology.

This is the view of her room if you open her door and look right.
She has curtains in the washer right now.
They're white and simple and currently becoming whiter.

The butterflies by her clock above her closet are hand-painted.
We keep postponing our closet door shopping day.
All of her toys are in her closet, so it doesn't bother me without doors- easy access means easy clean up.

I keep wondering if I should put something above her television.
The room is so busy with the paint already, but even with the stripes, the wall seems to be missing something.
(And TV is only watched on weekends. We don't have cable, either. So yeah- I'm evil about her TV watching habit.)

The doll house of my dreams.
Thankfully, also the doll house of her dreams.
On either side of the house are hair accessory holders.
She has a couple bows. ;)

Here's another angle of the wall I mentioned looking empty-ish.
In the corner is a quilt rack used as a dress-up rack.
It holds all of her dress up clothes/costumes/tutus and is just the right height for her and her friends.

Here's the shelf beside her bed.
It holds all of her accessories- newly organized and still overwhelming.

And I'm sure that by the time she goes to bed tonight, her room will look like a tornado went through it.
At least I know her room was clean once.
I have the pictures to prove it.

If you haven't linked up or entered to win a custom family tree print already, you can do so here.

Happy Monday, lovelies.

November 12, 2010

Saturday is my birthday. Who wants a present?

Good morning, friends!
I know I missed my usual What She Wore Wednesday post.
And my Thankful on Paper post.
Those will be posted soon- better late than never, right?
I may not get around to posting them tomorrow since it's my birthday and all, but I'll try.
In fact, I'm going to make this brief since I need to clean my house and I refuse to do it tomorrow!
Thankfully my current cleaning project makes me happy.
Do you remember this post?
Apparently I have acquired a few more craft supplies as my blogging has progressed.

But I have just turned that into this:

Now if only I could turn the laundry pile into stacks of clean laundry and declare that it was finished.

Moving on...
This evening I will be offering you all a little present.
(And after my birthday weekend, I will be mailing out those Lemi Shine packages that I owe some of you. Forgive me, please. If you're a regular reader, you know that life has been pretty hectic lately.)
So, want to know what you could win?
You'll have to visit Tatertots and Jello this evening to find out.

Have a wonderful weekend, everyone!

November 10, 2010

What I Whipped Up Wednesday Linky Party- Week 3

If you follow me on Twitter, you know that we recently got our flu shots.
And if you follow me on Twitter, you also know that I have been dealing with a very sick 6 year old.
Thankfully The Boy only caught her cough.
My house is full of cooties right now.
Not awesome.

I haven't read one blog post since Friday of last week.
Not one.
I am itching to curl up in bed with my laptop and catch up on everything, but until I get the vomitous laundry washed and the house cootie-free, my time visiting blogland is merely a pit-stop.
Last week we had fewer link-ups than the first week; I'm assuming that means you were all busy making something fabulous to show off this week.
And I apologize to those of you who came to link up but saw that it was already closed. I had no idea that linky was on East Coast time, and it threw everything off.
I'll fix that.
Last week, my favorite was a chalkboard welcome sign made by Wendy.

You all know I love an upcycled cabinet door!
Now I just need The Boy to break something else so I can make this cute welcome sign.
I can't wait to see what you have been up to- especially since I am so far behind with fabulous blog reading.
The rules:
Must be your project...any craft, recipe, makeover, or idea you want to show off.
Must be linked to the specific blog post, not just your blog's url.
Feel free to grab the button so that others can link up too!



November 4, 2010

Thankful on Paper- Week 1

My sweet friend Rachel has come up with a fantastic idea this holiday season that I adore.
Besides her reasons for starting this movement, and the fact that I love snail mail, I am contributing to this event for many other reasons.
The first:
The other night I was watching an old Friends DVD while I sewed and organized my craft area.
Half listening while intently sewing, I heard Rachel respond to Ross' question and say, "Catching up on my correspondence..."
I looked up and saw her thumbing through her address book and sorting her stationary.
I don't even own stationary.
That is about to change.
How can I so freely tell the world that I love letter writing and the USPS when the only paper I have in my house is either binded in a coloring book or stacked neatly in my printer?
Hypocrite: Party of 1.
And although I live and breathe social networking, I find it sad that last year's Christmas card was posted on my "wall" and not delivered to mailboxes.
I need to lead by example with this letter-writing situation, and also tell the people I care about how thankful I am for them more often.

This weeks' letter is addressed to Lori.
I also have a small note addressed to Nicole.
Unfortunately, The Girl is home with the flu, so another day has come and gone where I cannot get to the Post Office.

Lori is one of my best friends.
I met her via Craigslist in 2004 (back when CL was foreign to everyone and the Childcare section had my ad, and the ad of about 20 other ladies.)
She hired me as her son's daycare provider and over the years became a rock in my life.
She has done more for me than any other friend, hands down.
Not long ago, she surprised me with a check in the mail to help with medical bills and anything else we could use the money for.
The money she sent us was from a yard sale that she had on our behalf.
She asked for donations from other families, asked friends to help her, woke up at the bust of dawn, sold, sorted, and then sent us the profit.
And before that?
She sent me a grocery gift card and a gift card for a massage.
Do material things and money mean the most to me?
Obviously not.
But the fact that she knew that times were hard financially, and she did everything in her power to relieve our stress means the world to me.
I am so thankful for her kindness, her generosity, and her friendship.
She also randomly texts me pictures of cupcakes or tells me that she is thinking of Riley.
She offers to watch my children and calls me when she has questions.
I have very few friends who actually call me these days.
I love Lori.
And she will get a letter in the mail telling her so.

Nicole and I have not met in person.
She and I are friends on Twitter, and she is adorable.
Her tweets and DM's make me laugh out loud, and she is beyond kind as a business owner.
I happily order from her shop whenever possible, and she does the same with me.
I have an order for her just sitting here, and a note of thanks is neccessary with her patience and understanding.

Who are you thankful for?
Bust out the stationary or lame printer paper, and link up.

Happy Thursday, friends.

November 3, 2010

What She Wore Wednesday #7

{To see what "WIWW" means at our house, click here.}

Another week of crazy weather and crazy mornings.
I should juct accept the fact that that's how things go around here, huh?

Monday October 25, 2010

I have no clue where any of these clothes came from.
Boots: From Nana for Christmas.
Hair bow: Made by a friend.

Tuesday October 26, 2010

Top: Hand me down
Pants: Lincoln Thrift Store
Shoes: Walmart
Hair clip: Made by me

Wednesday October 27, 2010

She looks like she's in pain, doesn't she?
Good morning: FAIL.
Everything that we could have argued over, we did.
We both huffed and puffed and eventually had to wipe our tears.
Grouchy McTired x2.
Top: Hand me down
Capris: Hand me downs
Boots: Payless
Hair korker: Made by me

Thursday October 28, 2010

Top: Hand me down
Skirt: Goodwill
Tights: Target
Shoes: Payless
Hair korker: Made by me

Friday October 29, 2010

Halloween parade at school.
Unless you think I allow her total freedom when picking out her clothes...
Panda costume: Goodwill (with the tags on!)
Shoes: Walmart
Hair flower: Aloha 99 Cents Store

And since I help out in her classroom on Fridays...

Do you see why I don't participate in a daily WIWW post?
Dress: Estate sale. Ancient lady said her mom passed away and left her all of her church dresses. They were all fun polyester lovelies, but I only bought this one. I love it, even though it coordinates with nothing.
Leggings: Target
Havianas: Gift from a friend
Background: Courtesy of Hubby's nerve pain and the only place he is forced to pass before he leaves the house; ensuring that his meds are taken every single day.
(By the way, I'm not 8 feet tall like this photo suggests. Try having a 6 year old take your picture and see how tall you look.)

The Girl has worn some super cute outfits this week, so I'm excited for next week's post!

Happy Wednesday, fashionistas.

What I Whipped Up Wednesday Linky Party- Week 2

Good morning, lovelies!
Thank you to all who participated last week in my first ever "show off" linky party!
You girls have some seriously awesome blogs, and the projects linked up were fab.

Did you see this idea by Rachel?

If I had a home that I knew I would be in forever and ever, I would snatch up this awesomeness in a heartbeat. How lovely to see all that you have welcomed into your home.

Or what about this adorbs headband by Ana Paula?

Yup, I just need some free time and an old belt, and that little beauty is all mine.
Loves it.

Want to see what I've been working on?

Yup, I'm working on lots of fun projects to add to my shop for the holidays.
The fun apron and hair bow set will be added to my shop sometime today.
{happy dance}

What I Whipped Up Wednesday is back thanks to your awesomesauce participation last week!

Linky Rules:
Must be your project...any craft, recipe, makeover, or idea you want to show off.
Must be linked to the specific blog post, not just your blog's url.
Feel free to grab the button so that others can link up too!