Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Cute Little Polka Dot Elephant

Hi friends!  I hope you are doing well!  We are ok.  I'm still really sick and I'm on my second round of antibiotics for sinusitis and bronchitis.  I'm not gonna lie, it's kicking my butt.  All of it.  The illnesses and the medicine.  But it will get better and hopefully I've paid my "sickness dues" for a while.
I made this card at a crop last month and I never blogged it.  I absolutely fell in love with this sweet little stamp set from Close to My Heart which I got through my friend Rachel.  It was a hostess special and I was able to buy it since I had a party.  The tiny animals are too too cute!  I pulled out some Carta Bella paper and some WRMK washi tape and this is what I came up with.  I love this card!  However, I haven't made any cards since.  :(  Maybe someday...

Have a great day/week, friends!  Hope to blog again soon!  ***PS I picked my winner from the earring drawing and posted it to the Rafflecopter below.***

Monday, October 20, 2014

Mani Monday: On the Fringe

Hi friends!  I hope you're all doing well.  I'm still a bit under the weather.  I don't know what I have but it's kicking my bum!  I did five days of antibiotics and I'm still not feeling good.  Hopefully, it will clear up soon.  Everyone else here seems to be better though.  It never really hit the kids that hard.  
I'm posting another Mani Monday this week even though I don't have anywhere to link it up to.  :(  I went completely out of my comfort zone for this mani.  I'm not usually into the whole tribal vibe but when I saw these Jamberry wraps that are exclusive for October, I just had to have them.  They are called On the Fringe.  I really love the dreamcatchers on this sheet!  This is the first time I've gotten a sheet with mixed designs on it and I love it!  It's nice not to have to think about mixing and matching my own patterns.

Let me know if you know of a Mani Monday linky party.  Have a great week, friends!  

Thursday, October 16, 2014

Super Easy Taco Soup

Hi friends!  I hope you are you all doing well!  We have had better weeks.  I'm not going to lie to you.  I'm sick and hubby is sick.  The boys need parent teacher conferences.  The baby is... oh so very two. And we are having car issues.  But next week will be better, right?  Promise?

You know what helps on those weeks like this??  Super quick meals that everyone in the family will eat without complaining.  This is a taco soup recipe that I got from my mother in law that I've made tiny changes to.  It is so easy and fast!  The kids LOVE this soup!  It's perfect for during the week when you need to throw something together and run out the door to scouts, sports, or whatever you do.

Taco Soup
1 pound of ground turkey
1 packet of taco seasoning (you can also sub in your own homemade taco seasoning)
2 cans petite diced tomatoes in juice
2 cans of corn
1 can of black beans
1 can of pinto beans
Toppings of your choice (we like cheese, salsa, chips, sour cream)

1. Brown turkey in a large pot and drain the fat.
2. Open all the cans and dump ALL of them in (with liquid).
3. Season with taco seasoning.  I usually use a whole packet or the equivalent of homemade seasoning.
4. Cook for about 20 mins to let the flavors meld.
5. Ladle into bowls and top with your favorite taco toppings.

If you try this recipe, let me know how you like it!  :)  

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Just Jewelry Spotlight and Giveaway

Hi friends!  I hope you are doing well.  We are a little under the weather around here but at least it's finally starting to cool off.  I'm so thankful that fall seems to be coming to our area!  I'm really sick of being hot.

Today, I'm continuing my spotlight of companies that donated to our Flutter Page.  I think this might be my last one.  I got a donation from my friend Elly of Just Jewelry by Elly.  Elly introduced me to Just Jewelry earlier this year when she signed up to be a consultant.  I'd always appreciated how nicely accessorized Elly was but I didn't realize that she had wearing a bunch of Just Jewelry she bought from her friend who is a consultant back East.  Elly showed me a catalog and I immediately booked a party.  ALL the fashionable jewelry they sell is under $40 a piece!  I don't know about you, but I can't afford those super expensive jewelry companies that charge $98 for ONE necklace.

I wanted to share some of my favorite pieces with you so you can get a feel of what Just Jewelry has to offer.  Also, you can read my thoughts on the pieces if you like that kind of thing.  ;)

First up, Make a Connection Rose Gold Bracelet.  I love this Rose Gold trend!  I feel like the way gold is super trendy in crafting, rose gold is trendy in jewelry, makeup, and nails.  I love this bracelet because it's so pretty and I love the "diamond" accents.  It's a lovely pinkish shade and I wear it dressed up or down.
 Second is the Pearl Power necklace.  I love that you can wear this two ways!  It makes me feel like I'm getting more bang for my buck.  I feel like this is a great piece to dress up really plain outfits.  I often just wear a plain black top, jeans/slacks, and then a fancy necklace to make a statement.  It offers me a lot of comfort in my clothing but I don't feel underdressed.
 Third is the Hit the Gem necklace.  First off, I really love the gold.  It's been years and years since I've had gold jewelry.  Probably at least 20 years.  I feel like silver, platinum, and white gold have taken center stage for a VERY long time.  It was time, people, it was time.  I love the jewel toned accents on this necklace.  Again, I've worn this dressed down with just a black top and jeans and also very dressed up with a navy dress for a wedding.
I mentioned that I had a couple Just Jewelry parties in the past.  You have to see what I got at the last party!  I did a "Battle of the Hostesses" where Elly pitted hostessed against each other to see who would get the most sales and the hostess with the most sales got an additional $50 of credit.  I WON! It was so easy!  It was just a Facebook party.
And you know what?  I offered to buy some earrings from Elly for a giveaway and she REFUSED!  She told me that SHE would offer up a giveaway on my blog, no charge to me.  How sweet is that?!  Here are the amazing earrings you can win (retail value $15!)  If you don't have pierced ears, please feel free to enter and give them away!  Christmas is coming.  

You MUST use the Rafflecopter to enter!  I will be drawing the name directly from there!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

To purchase, you can contact Elly on her Just Jewelry Page or her Just Jewelry by Elly Facebook Page.

Monday, October 13, 2014

Jamberry Winner

Hi friends!  Super fast post.  I picked a winner and posted on the widget.  Stephanie B, you are the winner.  Please contact me within 72 hours to claim your prize or I will have to draw a new winner.  You can email me via the "email me" link in the right sidebar.  Thank you everybody for entering and I have more giveaways coming!

Saturday, October 11, 2014

Fluttering 2014 Wrap Up

31 Days.
29 houses.
4 Starbucks.
61 Fluttering Donations.
7 Flittering Donations.
1 bake sale.
4 dozen cookies delivered.
$1774 raised.

I'm almost in tears writing this post.  I could not even imagine at the beginning of September that we would raise SO much money for this amazing cause.  Our original goal was $500.  I was scared that we wouldn't even make that goal since when you think about it, $500 is A LOT of money.  Making over $1700 wasn't even on my radar.

Then we started.  I let B read the pamphlet that we were handing out.  He learned a lot.  And sadly, he learned at KIDS die of cancer.  He learned that cancer KILLS more kids than than any other disease.  And he learned that JLK died.  I had sheltered him from this.  He was only 6 himself when it happened and he's a sensitive child.  But we were going to do this campaign and he needed to understand why it was important.
Next, Brady made us a plan and we were on our way.  We went to 29 different houses sometimes together, sometimes not.  We Flittered a car, 4 Starbucks, 1 It's a Grind, 1 office cubicle, and our church.  We got greedy at the last minute and threw together a last minute bake sale and made $114.  Our community (local and online) opened their arms to us and cheered us on with constant emotional support and donations.
Every time we started to lose momentum or fumble, we would get a reminder or a gentle nudge telling us that we needed to keep going.  JLK's anthem Brave would come on the radio.  Dragonflies (real ones) would come hang out in our yard for 20 minutes, they would park on our car, they would land right next to us on the fence when we were parked, or Libby would leave me a comment.  Her words and knowing that she could see what we were doing pushed over that finish line.

Libby Kranz.  That woman is a gift to the world.  I could not imagine anyone handling all this grief with more grace and more courage.  She stirred people in 49 states to get up and spread awareness.  350 families were changed forever like ours.  Families that bonded together to raise money and awareness.  Almost everyday, she rips my heart out with her truth.  Her Love4JLK Blog.  She's been to Washington DC.  She refuses to stop until she HELPS people.  She inspires every single day of my life and I cannot thank her enough for awaking my dormant heart of service.  I cannot beginning to express how much I owe her for stirring my passion and helping me find purpose.  And she inspired me to get my kids started since it's never too early to give back.  Because of her, we are better people.  And I will always always be grateful.  

Monday, October 6, 2014

Mani Monday and a Jamberry Giveaway!

Hi friends!  I hope that you are all well.  We are ok.  We have a heat wave and that's really annoying because we still don't have air conditioning in the van.  It's AWFUL when it's 100 degrees.  Seriously.  I hope this is the last of the heat for this year.

Today, I'm featuring a Jamberry manicure that I am loving!  How cute is this combo?  I really love mixing and matching for a fun and funky look!  I'm wearing the Leopard, Midnight Sky, and the gold and white glittery letters was a special for August.  It's so cute and it lasts just under 2 weeks.
Soooo, if you are looking for a Jamberry consultant, check out my friend Ali's Site.  She is AMAZING!  She had a fundraiser for Unravel last month to help out my Flutter Campaign and she donated $125!  Can you believe that?!?  She also has GREAT tips and tricks on how to apply Jamberry for the best wear and she even has a GIVEAWAY going on her Jamberry Facebook Page where when she hits 100 likes, she's giving away a Jamberry Nail Lacquer.

I have a giveaway for you too!  I got this nail wrap (not my picture) for hosting a party in Sept and I want to share a half sheet with you guys!  A half sheet is enough for 1 manicure and 1 pedicure.  To enter, check out the Rafflecopter below!  (US residents only.)

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Sunday, September 28, 2014

Spotlight: Gold Canyon Candles With Susan

Hi friends!  I hope you are well!  We are wrapping up the month here with our Flutter Campaign.  Just a couple more days!  I've decided that if our Flutter Page reaches $1600 in donations for childhood cancer, I will be dying my hair PINK to celebrate.  Pink was JLK's favorite color so I find it suiting.

Today, I got a donation from my friend Susan who is also doing a Gold Canyon Candle Fundraiser and will be donating the money to Unravel.  She needs to sell 10 more candles to be able to close out her fundraiser.  Gold Canyon Candle is a direct sales candle company whose mission is to help people become their own boss and stay home with their kids.  They offer candles, scent pods and warmers, diffusers, fragrance oils, and more.  Susan's fundraiser is for the candles shown below.  They are $22 each and 40% of all sales with go to Unravel.  You can order by going to SUSAN'S WEBSITE and emailing her directly since all the fundraiser candles must be ordered together.  Just tell her Ashley referred you to make sure it goes to the correct fundraiser.
Have a great day, friends!

Thursday, September 25, 2014

Younique Makeup Review

Hi friends!  I hope you are well!  We are doing pretty good.  It's RAINING in California!  HOORAY!  We are in a drought so every drop of rain we can get is needed.  I hope it rains a lot more.  Mostly because I like fruit and vegetables and not paying an arm and a leg.

Ready for another makeup review?  I'm excited for this one!  It's the Younique makeup line that's super new.  First some disclaimers: my friend De sells Younique and she sent me some samples to try out since I'd never heard of the brand before.  I'm a makeup enthusiast so it's thrilling to try new makeup for me!  I also joined De's Younique Facebook Group where I WON the 3D Fiber Lashes in a giveaway.  (Seriously, join the group for these amazing giveaways!)  While I didn't pay for any of those products, all the opinions are mine and completely honest.  That's how I roll.

Here's a photo from her website to show you the kinds of things they sell.

First, De sent me a sample of 5 of the Moodstuck Mineral Pigment Powders.  All the shadows are talc free, chemical free, paraben free, 100% natural, and CRUELTY FREE!  I asked her to send me some matte ones because I've never even heard of matte pigments.  Usually pigments are super sparkly.  The ones she sent me from left to right are: Innocent, Beautiful, Infatuated, Risqué, and Corrupted.
Pros: I love that they are natural and cruelty free.  I think that's awesome!  They are also highly pigmented and wear beautifully.  They do not irritate my eyes at all.  They are easy to blend.
Cons: You need to pick the right colors for you.  The lightest shade I got is white/cream and it does not show up at all on my skin.  You can barely see it in the swatch but it really doesn't show up on my eyes.  I'm also medium skin toned so I would just need something that doesn't blend into my skin so much.
Would I Repurchase: Yes.  At a $10 price point, these are very inexpensive for what you'd get.  You would probably NEVER finish using one pot.

Next, De also sent me the Lucrative Lip Gloss in Loveable.
Pros: This is extremely smooth and very comfortable on the lips.  It has good pigmentation.  There's no strong smell.  They have a nice amount of gloss without being over the top.
Cons: They cost $15.  That's out of my price range for lipgloss.
Would I Repurchase: No.  Lipgloss isn't important enough to me to spend $15 on.  While it's super nice, I just don't put the focus on my lips.

Lastly, the Moodstruck 3D Fiber Lashes.   This is a combo of Transplanting Gel and Natural Fibers.
Pros: Oh my gosh, the volume and length is amazing.  After one use, I was sold.  I love love love big lashes!  I also dislike putting on false lashes.  I'm not good at it, it takes forever, and they weigh my eyes down.  3D Fiber Lashes do none of those things.  There's no dry time.  There's no glue.  You brush on the gel, then add the fibers, and seal with the gel.  If you apply mascara, this will be an easy task for you.  I also feel like I can wear this every single day whereas wearing a full set of false lashes to the grocery store might be overkill.  Maybe.
Cons: My skin is super oily and though this product is water resistant, the oils on my skin cause it to smudge a bit under my eyes after a few hours of wear.  I usually just top this with a waterproof mascara from the drugstore so keep the black from getting under my eyes.  Also, please take your time with this product.  Don't be applying it while driving the car.  If you get fibers in your eyes because you are distracted and rushing, it will hurt.  I got some when I was rushing and it was not fun.  This isn't really a "con" as much as a warning.
Would I Repurchase: Yes.  The $29 price tag kills me but I love it so so much.  Plus, if I bought enough falsies to wear for a few months (that's how long you should keep mascara), it would cost more than this product.

This is me with the eyeshadows, 3D Fiber Lashes, and lipgloss on.
I also wanted to say that De did donate to my Flutter Page as well though not for the purchase of being featured on my blog.  Just because she's nice.  I love nice people!  If you don't have a Younique consultant, check out De's Page.  She's the best and super efficient.  Seriously, one of the best people you'll ever work with or talk to.  

Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Flittering Cookie Bags

Hi friends!  I hope you're doing well!  We are pretty good over here.  I'm getting excited for fall.  I don't know that I'm usually so ready for fall but a summer with no air conditioner in a black mini van will get you ready for some cool weather.  Let me tell you!  ;)  

Today, I'm sharing another project I made for the Flitter/Flutter Campaign.  On Facebook, I told my friends that if they donated $15+ to our Flutter Page, I would gift them with 1 dozen large chocolate chip cookies and a handmade paper Flitter dragonfly keepsake.  This is what I came up with for the packaging.  The top bags are Whisker Graphics Diagonal Stripe Bigger Bitty Bags and the bottom one is a Polka Dot Bigger Bitty Bag.  I took the free Flitter graphics from Unravel and printed them out.  I only have a black and white printer so I took out some of the grey on the wings so that I could fill them in.  I cut out the dragonflies, matted them on pink card stock, and colored in the wings with Stickles glitter glue.  I added Wink of Stella in clear to the dragonfly bodies and some pink rhinestones on the antennae.  I wrote #Love4JLK on the pink card stock and wrote everyone's name in white gel pen on the dragonfly.  If I had a laminator, I would have laminated them to make them a REAL keepsake but I was working with what I had here.  I adhered them with washi tape to the bag so they can be taken off and used on a fridge or memo board.  

In closing, I'd like to do a last push for the Unravel campaign.  My friend Libby is a very special lady and Jennifer's passing has had a massive impact on my life.  Please consider donation $7 for the 7 children that will die today in the US.  You can donate HERE.  Until there's a cure...

Sunday, September 21, 2014

Ready to Pop Baby Shower

Hi friends!  I hope you're doing well!  We are ok.  This last week was super busy.  I'm hoping not to have a week like that for a while.  I just overcommitted and that's ok.  Live and learn.

One of the events I had last week was a baby shower for my friend who is due to have her baby next month.  Today, I'm going to share the projects that I made for the shower.  I'm really getting into making things for parties.  (I actually still need to blog the boys's birthday party.  Who knows when that will happen.)

This is the invite that Dustin pretty much made on his own.  I gave him an idea of what I wanted and he makes it happen.  

This is the sign I made for the front door.  

Here are all the elements of the party favors.  I made a sign, decorated some favor bags, and had 3 different kinds of popcorn.  The favor bags are Whisker Graphics White Horizontal Stripe Middy Bitty Bags with Scrolly Square Sweet Sticky Labels in Pink on top.

Here are the drinks and some little "POP" themed treats.

And here's the banner I made with some Spellbinders rectangles and circles.  The letters were cut for me by my friend Elly on her Silhouette.  The onesies are a die from Taylored Expressions.  I added a few little rhinestones to the onesies to dress them up.  The banner was strung together by my friend Cynthia using Cotton Candy Divine Twine and Purple Plum Divine Twine to match the party colors.

We also had balloons and streamers for decorations and some great games!  It was such a fun shower and I'm so glad that people seemed to have a really great time.  Have a great day, friends!

Saturday, September 20, 2014

Give Thanks

Hi friends!  I hope you're having a good day!  We are doing pretty good.  This is my first day all week when I haven't been non stop go.  It's kind of nice.  I had a visit with a friend this morning and then in the afternoon we'll have a birthday party to attend.  

Here's a fall card I made forever ago.  I think all the elements are October Afternoon?  I'm pretty sure the washi tape is from Pebbles.  Can I just say that I'm giving thanks for the fall(ish) weather right now?  The air conditioning in our van isn't working and let me tell you, the slight breeze and the fact that it cools down earlier in the day is AMAZING!
I hope you're all well!  Have a great day!

Monday, September 15, 2014

Spotlight: Butterfly Reflections, Ink

Hi friends!  I'm back with another great company that donated to our Flitter Page.  It's a fabulous online store called Butterfly Reflections, Ink.  The owner is my friend Vanessa Middleton and her store is growing so quick!  I've ordered a bunch of times and she has great items in stock and ships super fast!

Beyond just having fabulous NEW products (you know I love the NEW stuff), Butterfly Reflections Ink also has their line of EXCLUSIVE stamps illustrated by Shanna Noel.  I love Shanna's style!  Seriously, so so cute!  I can't wait to see what they come out with next!

Check out Butterfly Reflections, Ink for great brands like Lawn Fawn, Paper Smooches, MME, Elle Studio, and SO many more!  If you'd like to make a donation to my Flutter Page and get your company featured here on my blog, please feel free to contact me.  My email is on the right sidebar.

*This post contains affiliate links.*

Tuesday, September 9, 2014

National Stamping Month

Hi friends!  I hope you are doing well.  Sooooo... I said on my Facebook page that if people with small businesses donated to my Flutter page, I would blog about them.  Though I don't think that this is the reason my friends are donating, a deal is a deal.

My sweet friend Rachel who donated is a Close to My Heart consultant.  They are currently celebrating National Stamp Month along with CTMH's 30th year anniversary.  If you purchase $30 of regular retail priced product, you get the promotional stamp set for free.  I'm in LOVE with this stamp set!  It's so cute and perfect for Pocket Scrapbooking and card making!  I currently have a party open with Rachel.  If you click HERE and scroll down to the bottom right, you can hit "join" on Ashley's Party.  :)

I love their stamps!  They are super cute!  They also have great ink pads, my favorite is the pigment white.  I also love the Organizers.  I have all three sizes.  They also launched a new pocket scrapbooking line called Picture My Life that I'm anxious to try.  You should check it out because seriously, getting this stamp set for FREE is pretty exciting.  Well, in my world it is.  ;)
Have a wonderful day, friends!  If you'd like to donate to our Fluttering Page and be featured on my blog, please feel free to email me!  

Friday, September 5, 2014

How We've Been Flittering (for Love4JLK)

Hi friends!  I hope you are well!  We are ok.  Brady has an ear infection and it's kind of been taking up my whole week.  Avery is teething and acting like she's sick as well.  This has not however stopped us from completing our month of Fluttering for Love4JLK.  The kids, Dustin, and I are having a blast sneaking to houses and Fluttering them!  If you follow me on Instagram or Facebook, you will see all the pictures of our adventures.

In my last post I mentioned that if you wanted to take part in the Unravel Campaign that you might consider Flittering.  Flittering is great for people who didn't get a Flutter kit.  It's basically Flutter Lite.  Originally, the idea was that you could print out their flyer and give it to people.  You know me, I wanted to up the FUN level.  I emailed the gal in charge of Flittering (who happens to be my pal Sarah) and asked if I could have a high res image of the dragonfly that was on the Flitter Flyer.  She so sweetly sent me back the image and I started Flittering the Fun Way!

Here's my Flitter and Flutter File (say that 5 times fast.)  I put in the You've Been Flittered signs, the dragonflies that I printed and cut out, some WASHI TAPE (this tape is made in a way that it's removable without leaving a residue, you can buy it at Michael's or even Target.  You do not want to damage someone's property while Flittering!), and the Flitter Flyers from Unravel.  I also keep a couple papers from my Flutter kit in the back so when we go to pick up the dragonflies I can replenish my envelope without having to drive home in between.

First up, my daily stomping ground Starbucks.  I really wanted to Flitter the door but the manager said that I would have to use the bulletin board and that's better than nothing.  Since I knew that this one would be left up for a while, I took the dragonfly image and printed it out on card stock then I used pink glitter glue (Stickles) to coat the wings.  I don't have a color printer so I wanted to add some oomph.

Next up, we did a friend's car while she was at work.  She was parked by a Crossfit gym so lots of people walked by her car.  We actually had to TOUCH the car to do this so make sure the alarm isn't on.  Brady helped me with this one.  And my friend Ali let me use her printer so we got to print these ones out in color.  (Thanks Ali!!)

Then, we did our friend's apartment.  We would have liked to Flutter these friends but they don't have a lawn.  Insert solution.  Again, we used that Washi Tape so that they can easily remove it.

The Flittering Page now has graphics that you can save to your computer and print out if you want to Flitter in the same fashion I've been doing it.  I took the images and put two of the "You've been flittered" signs on one page.  I also took the dragonfly image and put two of those on a page to save paper.  If you'd like the images I created, please email me.  You can find my email in the right sidebar.

If you aren't able to help in this way, please consider donating to my Flutter Page.  My goal is to raise $500 for Unravel this month and I'm busting my bum to do it.  Every single dollar helps.  I've even had some kids give me change (which Dustin and I are rounding up to the nearest dollar.)