Wednesday, December 16, 2009

HUGE SALE


THIS is gonna be HUGE!


I am celebrating the fact that ALL my Christmas shopping is done. And what better way to celebrate this glorious feat than to have a SALE.... make that a HUGE SALE!


My dear friends, are you a last minute shopper? Consider getting something personalized for your mom, the perfect (and thoughtful) gift for your sister, or a stocking stuffer for your daughter. Can't decide on what to get Grandma?


Everyone LOVES personalized stationery!!


Get ready my friends! This will only last ONE day.


Order Thursday, December 17th during our ONE day sale, and have it delivered before Christmas. Guaranteed.*

Tell your friends. Blog about it. Tweet it. Anyway you wanna do it, just get the word out.



*International orders are not guaranteed by Christmas. Sorry!

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

a SWEET party

From the Swanky Studio:


Abby's mom contact me with a request for a candy themed party invitation. Abby specifically wanted a pink & orange party. Abby's got STYLE!! I knew instantly this would be a fun project.

The results ...

Abby, I hope your birthday was sweet!

Monday, December 7, 2009

Fit for a Princess


We had the opportunity to bless baby girl at church a few weeks ago.

A huge thank you goes to my mom who HANDMADE her dress. She has made these dresses for all her grand-daughters. Baby girl's dress is made with raw silk fabric - perfect for a Princess!
Mom is an extraordinary seamstress!!


I love the swarovski crystal buckle she added.


Here is baby girl all dressed up like a Princess!



{yes, my mom does custom orders. no, she does not have a website...yet!}

Monday, November 2, 2009

The Great Pumpkin

No. Not the Charlie Brown version.



This Great Pumpkin comes to the homes of boys and girls on Halloween night.

This Great Pumpkin loves to bring gifts to boys and girls.
The story is simple. The Great Pumpkin comes to your homes the night of Halloween. He takes the Halloween candy from the children and leaves a present in it's place. Brilliant!
A friend of mine shared this with me and I knew I had to share this tale with my kids. So now that the candy is gone, I am not tempted to dip into their trick-or-treat bags!!

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

little ladys & handsome bruisers

I have to share an affordable new find.


Peanut Posh is an online boutique and I am loving all the fantastic goodies.


They make these infant carseat covers using the most darling fabric. This is my favorite. I love the pink & orange combo. And with this being flu season I am thinking about picking up the peanut shell. That way strangers (or little kids) aren't tempted to touch my little babe.




I am loving these affordable little ties. I picked up two for my little guys (the one in the middle & a blue & white polka dot that is not available anymore). I think I am going to pick up two more for them because I am really loving their bright colored ties.



HOW CUTE are these hair clips?!! I can't resist all the adorableness! I love that you can mix & match the flower petals and choose between the bottle caps or a gem for the center. I may just splurge for Big Kahuna kit because I just can't decide.

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Holy Guacamole!!

HOLY GUAC-A-MOLY!



We have a bag full of avocados. The other day I made the yummy Wheat Salad. Last night I made a good sized bowl of guac to go with our chicken tacos. AND I still have a bunch of avocados left. I need to come up with another good recipe idea before they go bad.


Any suggestions???

Monday, October 19, 2009

Momnesia

Ever hear of momnesia? If you are a mom, not only have you probably heard of it - you've experienced it as well!

I distinctly remember prior to the birth of my first child, one of the senior principles in the company I worked for would often comment on the fact that I needed to enjoy my memory now and that once the baby comes I'd "lose all my smarts."

I honestly didn't think he was serious - I mean is that really possible to become forgetful just because you have a baby?

It most certainly is!


So let's see ... most recently I put the cereal box away in the fridge, and the milk in the cupboard. I forgot to take my child preschool, AND forgot to pay the tuition. I left the house without diapers & wipes on more than one occasion (what mother of babies does this?). AND I forgot my baby's 1st pediatrician appointment. Believe me when I say there is more, but at the risk of embarrassing myself with "TMI" I am leaving a few off this blog!


{cartoon via Off The Mark}

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Gettin' my craft on

I am feeling a bit crafty these days...



...just a few little projects that are in the works!

And with my mom on town, maybe she'll help me figure out how to properly use my serger.

I'll share once I am done.

Sunday, October 11, 2009

Partying with Vince, Dean & Dr. Titzer!

I am no stranger to the night life.

The night life at home that is.

I am a night owl. Once the kiddos are in bed, I have time for myself, I can get some work done, and of course spend time with the Hubs!

So, if you didn't already guess having a newborn allows me more of an opportunity to be up at night. Little Princess and I party at night - several times a night in fact! I know - you're jealous!

As I was saying ... being up several times a night has given me some sweet opportunities to learn all about new products (new to me anyway) and business opportunities just waiting for me. With all this awesomenss that I've learned I must share it ...

I have learned from Vince that I can easily "slap my troubles away." And although that infomercial is convincing, THIS is what really sold me!

(not sure what is more hysterical, the video itself or the fact the over 6 million people have viewed it!)


I have learned from Dean that I can be a Real Estate Millionaire without cash, credit or experience! Who knew being a millionaire was so easy!!


And the best one ... my baby can read! Now in all seriousness, I am kind of tempted to give this one a try. Who knows maybe my baby really can learn to read. If I do breakdown and order it I will give a full report once my baby is reading!!

Monday, October 5, 2009

Fried Peanut Butter & Jelly Sandwiches

The hubby saw a recipe for fried PBJs online from some county fair in Texas, he HAD to try it.

I was a little apprehensive because back in August we went to the OC fair and tried both the fried Twinkies and the fried snickers - both were a let down.

I am not a huge fan of fried foods, but let me just say that these were GOOD! I almost wanted another but they were a bit heavy! I don't even want to know the calorie & fat content.

Want to try it? Here is what you need:



1. A Loaf Of Fresh White Bread (we used whole grain)
2. Creamy Peanut Butter.
3. Grape/Strawberry/Raspberry Jelly (whatever you prefer)





4. White Sugar
5. 2 Cups of Flour (combine sugar & Flour)
6. Whole Milk
7. Large Eggs (combine milk & eggs)
8. Vegetable Oil (fill your fry pan with the oil)



For each deep fried sandwich you will want to trim the crusts from your bread and smear a thin coating of peanut butter on your bread. Add some jelly and spread it out over the top of the peanut butter. Put your peanut butter and jelly sandwich together and crimp your edges with the tines of a fork. Dip your sandwich quickly into a well beaten milk and egg mixture and then into your mixed flour and sugar.

Now drop your breaded peanut butter and jelly sandwich into your fry pan that is preheated to 350 degrees and fry until golden brown. Drain on a bed of paper towels and then sprinkle well with powdered sugar (optional).



Enjoy!

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Welcome Home


She has arrived and we are in love...


Allow me to introduce you to Blake Rose

Born September 19th
7lbs. 8oz. 20 inches

I am happy to simply stare at her all day long.


Saturday, September 12, 2009

lovelies for the bebe

My so very talented sister in law made the sweet little babe a beautiful quilt.





Isn't it gorgeous?! I love the colors and fabrics she chose for this quilt. It makes me smile and want to snuggle in it every time I look at it.
Thanks Lisa!!

Thursday, September 10, 2009

baby's room prep

Still another two weeks away from her debut, I am slowly getting the baby girl's room ready.

I ordered custom bedding from OwlyBaby and it just came the other day. I was quite pleased because I had painted the walls a creamy apricot in anticipation for the bedding to arrive.



Becky made me 2 crib sheets, a box pleat crib skirt & a quilt.


Becky did a fabulous job and I love it!!

Saturday, August 29, 2009

Super Party

I love that I get to design fun and pretty things for people. This particular one was possibly more fun than some of the others. Maybe it was because I personally got excited about it.


My kids absolutely LOVE the darling show Super Why! on PBS. (If you have little ones and have not seen it, I highly recommend it. I even enjoy sitting with the kids to watch it).


So when Carrie asked me about ideas in creating an invitation for a Super Why! party I couldn't stop thinking about it and wanted to create something right away - such a cute idea and I wish I had though of it! I may just have to copy her next year :)

We kept it simple with just an invitation and stickers. I can't wait to see all the creative things she has planned for this little party.




If you are not familiar with Super Why!, this invitation was inspired by Wyatt's (aka Super Why!) phone-computer-PDA unit.

Thursday, August 27, 2009

Maternity Leave


As much as I wanted to remain open up until the 11th hour of this pregnancy I have to close down for a few weeks. I have much to do to prepare for this little wee one.

SwankyPaper.com will take it's last orders on September 4th and will return sometime in October.

You'll still find me blogging here, in fact I may just have more time to blog!

Thank you for your patience and please feel free to peruse the shop in the meantime.

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Decisions Decisions

I finally made a decision about the bedding for our baby girl!

I am going with the orange palette!

I am so EXCITED and I can't wait to get it.
As soon as I do I'll post pictures of the room.

4 more weeks

These are rare! Seriously!! I don't do pregnancy pictures. While at the park, the hubby took pictures as I was not paying attention ....





Hey look - I still have my ankles!!

To be honest, I have been a little nervous about having a girl. Raising my little boys has been relatively easy - naturally we have our moments - All mothers do.
So, I hear from people (strangers) who volunteer (unsolicited) comments upon hearing that I am having a girl. They tell me how much harder it is to raise girls and that my whole world is about to change with a girl.
I have decided to raise her like the boys, but with a bit of pink and maybe a few bows.

Thursday, August 20, 2009

From the Swanky Studio

I have been keeping super busy with custom orders, my church responsibilities, the kiddos, and research for my other little project - I forget to post my custom work to show off!!



How fun is this birthday party invitation? Brooke's mom is an old friend of mine and asked me to make something suitable for her teenager. With the party events being Guitar Hero and Karaoke - could I possibly do anything other than this little creation?


Hooray for babies!!
I get requests for baby shower invitations a lot - and I love making them. This one was a treat for me to make. I love creamsicle orange paired with chocolate brown.
I heard Lauren is due a week before me - Congratulations Lauren!!

I never really thought of pairing yellow & charcoal for a baby shower invitation, and I have to admit that I love it! The mama-to-be has been decorating the room in yellow & greys - very modern!
What can I create for you?

Friday, August 14, 2009

Smitten

I first saw these shoes over here and I was quite smitten with them - OK, to be more blunt I am now coveting them! I even have the perfect outfit to wear with them. The best part is that for only $49.95, they are affordable.

But I am refraining for two reasons:
1) Pregnancy and heels don't mix; and
2) I still need to make a decision on crib bedding and buy something asap.

With any luck, in a few months (post baby) they'll be on sale for a steal of a deal.

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

The Perfect Princess Party

Remember this little post about the lovely Princess Amerah?

She posted a darling video on both her website & on YouTube on "How to throw the Perfect Princess Party"






Do you have a Prince? Princess Amerah has a little message for all those Princes out there too!

Please Excuse Me

for my lack of posting lately. I honestly don't remember growing a human life being this exhausting. I am now a little less than 6 weeks from my due date - mine don't seem to ever come on their exact date, does any ones?

I was attempting to be the ambitious mom and make all the bedding for crib, a matching quilt and valance. My intentions were there - really! I even had picked out the fabric, or almost picked out - thanks to JCaroline Creative this was no small challenge, I mean, have you seen all the fabric she has?? I had it narrowed down to Joel Dewberry & Heather Baily.

After this past weekend, my highly ambitious plan to sew crib bedding was lost! I am not up for the challenge anymore.

Thanks you Etsy I don't have to be. I can seriously get lost in all the fun shops and all the creative people out there. And GUESS WHAT?! I found two sellers who make crib bedding using the exact fabric swatches that I planned on using. This has made my day. Now I just need to make a decision?

Here are my options:

from OwlyBaby

from Customhouse Baby


I love the bright colors from Heather Bailey's Pop Garden line, but I am also loving the idea of an Orange palette for the babe's room. Any Suggestions?

Friday, August 7, 2009

A Little Bit Country

You can take the Girl out of the Country,
But you can't take the Country out of the Girl!


YEE-HAW!!!

The hubs and I went to see Alan Jackson last night in concert. It was my first time seeing this iconic country star and it was everything I hoped for. We had great seats, and a fantastic view!

After the concert (which was held at the Orange County Fair), we headed out into the fair. Hubs wanted to try one of those totally fried snickers bars. On out way to find the vendor who made them we saw the totally fried Twinkies. I got the Twinkie (thinking it would taste like a donut), and hubs got the snickers. I'll save you the trouble of tasting the Twinkies - DON'T! I couldn't even finish it. The fried snickers on the other had was better than I expected.


{Alan Jackson image via here}

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

King of the Jungle ~ Baby Shower

I recently finished another custom invitation for a baby shower. My client was a dream to work with. She provided me with the cute quote and gave me the color scheme. She is using the King of the Jungle paper goods and wanted something to coordinate with it.


Friday, July 31, 2009

Keeping fit

I have a confession ...

I have not been as diligent with working out during this pregnancy as I have been with the others (or when I am not preggers for that matter!) I don't sleep well at night. I wake up terribly exhausted. It's been way too hot to take the double jogger out for a light jog or speed walk. I get too busy during the day with the kiddos or work that I don't make it to the gym. All excuses!

Yesterday as I was dressing to run a few morning errands, I put on my favorite pair of jeans. No, they are not maternity jeans. I have been able to continue wearing them because they are low rise in the front (and higher in the back so as to not show off any unsightly flesh). I wore them throughout my second pregnancy until the last few weeks. I love these jeans! So my point is this ... I put them on yesterday and they were so stink'in tight! I don't remember them ever being this tight. But I am pregnant - so it's OK they don't have to fit, right? Yeah - not exactly my thought process at the time. I found myself laying down on my bed sucking in trying to zip up just a little bit ... blah - blah - blah! I took those jeans off. Yes, I am ridiculous.

Where am I going with all this .... I NEED to get in a workout several times a week - not so that I can fit into those jeans, but because I know that continual exercise will make labor easier and the recovery of having a baby quicker. I only have 8 weeks to go, so I better get started. I found my solution.


SWIMMING LAPS.


I am swimming almost daily with the boys so I might as well get in a good workout while in the pool. I started my laps on Wednesday and continued with it yesterday. My husband is thrilled about this. He was/is a swimmer. He swam competitively throughout high school and routinely continues swimming for fun. He has been telling me all along that it is the best entire body workout and easy on the joints too.

I'm off to grab my swim suit & goggles and get the kiddos ready for another fun day at the pool.

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

More on Outdoor Spaces


After much work (mostly from the hubs!) the kids have their very own playground in the backyard.
I hope my neighbor doesn't mind that we put this colossal sized structure next to our shared fence...



Friday, July 24, 2009

Freshness from the garden: herbs

I love the freshness that my garden has delivered.


I think I'll make pesto and try my hand at making the Chicken Pomodori panini in from here. I think this will be on the menu tonight for dinner.


Cilantro is quite possibly my favorite herb. I use it whenever I can, which is way I decided to plant it - so I could!


My new favorite recipe with cilantro is Wheat Salad. My friend, Maria introduced this dish to me - she make is much better than I do, although it is a very simple recipe. I can't tell if this is a pregnancy craving or just the fact that I love it! Here's the recipe so you can love it too!:

Wheat Salad

2 Cups of wheat
3 diced tomatoes
1 bunch of chopped cilantro
1/4 cup diced red onion
1 teaspoon of salt
1 avocado
1/2 cup of "Kraft" Zesty Italian Fat Free Dressing
1 squeeze of lime juice

Boil wheat in water for about 20-30 minutes. Wheat needs to be soft.
Using a strainer, rinse wheat with cold water.
Place in medium bowl, add tomatoes, onion, and cilantro. Mix with a fork, add lime juice, dressing and salt. Keep mixing and add avocado on top.
Serve with chips or tostadas.

*The last time I made this I did not have a lime (note to self: plant a lime tree), instead I used a lemon - and it tasted just as good.

Mmmm! typing that recipe has me wanting this wheat salad for lunch.

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

construction theme party




Clockwise from top left corner:
1. Dump Truck pinata
2. Chocolate rocks
3. Keeping cool with a water slide
4. Goody-Bags
5. Dirt Cups
6. Birthday boy taking a swing at the pinata



The Birthday boy had so much fun! We were all wiped out after the party. It may have been a lot of work to plan and organize, it was certainly worth it. Parties make for great memories!



Whew! All the birthdays are done for the year ... well almost, we will have one more soon.

Friday, July 17, 2009

Party Time

This weekend my lil' boy is turning 4! Having never had a party for him, hubs and I thought it would be fun to throw one ... As much fun as I anticipate we will have, planning a party is much more work than I ever thought (and expensive!).

When I asked our lil' boy what theme he wanted for his party all he said was TRUCKS! So after thinking about what type of "truck" theme to go with we decided on a Construction / Dump Truck party.



Come back on Monday for a party pictures.

Have a great weekend!

{construction theme party invitation by me}

Friday, July 10, 2009

Finding the Balance

I have often struggled with trying to balance working at home and putting my family first. Being able to set up my studio at home has always seemed perfect. But when the kids come in while I am designing for a client or processing orders, this will often put me in a stressful frame of mind. Typically I end up stopping what I am doing in order to make sure they don't make a mess of things. This usually adds more stress because there is always a deadline to meet. BUT - I love what I do - so how do I balance it all? Sometimes I think I have it down and everything is harmonious. Other days - not so much.





Traci Bisson of The Mom Entrepreneur blogged last week about how she has found the balance (after many years!) She pointed out several tips on how to put family first while maintaining a successful business.

Regardless of whether you are a mom with a business, or not - because let's face the truth - ALL MOMS ARE WORKING MOMS! It is an insightful post and worth reading.

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

Happy Birthday to my lil' guy


My little babe is 2 today!

To celebrate we are having a little party for him. His current obsession is cars and trains - such a boy! So, naturally I had to create an invitation using one of the two ... the train was easier to make so I went with that!

We are off to have a fun day! Hope you have a great day too!!


Tuesday, June 30, 2009

From the Swanky Studio

A recent custom designed invitation with Seashell/Beach theme.


This recent design is for a bridal shower. The location? A beautiful house on the beach. A fitting invitation, don't you think? I love the simple star fish used on this particular invitation.

{pertinent information has been changed to protect the innocent}
{please do not steal priginal work by Swanky Paper or any image by me off this blog without proper credit}

Monday, June 29, 2009

patio cover


ok.. so remember this post?

We were digging ditches for those huge posts you see in the background.




This is our low budget answer to a great patio cover. (Anything is better than what we had!!)


It was a simple solution - ok, so not that simple - it took hubs quite some time to get those posts just right. It should have been a two-man job to lift those heavy beams, but he only got one and a half! Being preggers I didn't help as much as I normally would have.




The best thing about this cover (other than its size) is that it is UV protected and has a SPF rating.




Here is hubs relaxing as he enjoys his new patio cover.

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

vintage circus

I am way behind in sharing some of my custom work.

Here is one that I made a few weeks ago. Mama, Ashley, asked me to create a circus themed birthday invitation for her daughter. She wanted something with a vintage feel to it using orange and light blue (quite possibly my FAVORITE color combination!)

Wanting to get an idea as to what vintage circus theme is all about I poured through tons of images online ... It was too overwhelming, so I quit looking and came up with this:

Creating this made me want to plan my own vintage circus party! I paired the invites with orange envelopes and made a coordinating mailing label. In addition, little Camryn had matching thank you notes to go with her vintage circus invitations.


{invitation by me. please do not steal original work}

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

surprise weekend


We had such a nice relaxing weekend. It was very difficult to come home.




For Father's Day, I surprised hubby with a spa treatment ... out in Palm Springs! If any of you know my husband, he is a manly man. According to him spa treatments are for women. Well, the idea came to me one night when he asked if men ever get pedicures. Of course they do!! Let's go get pedicures, I say to him. Well, we never did. Being Father's Day, I used this as a great excuse to pamper him - HE LOVED IT!! He has even requested getting massages regularly.


While he was getting pampered I spent the day at the pool with the kiddos. Swimming. munching on snacks. and sipping virgin Pina Coladas!

We all has such a good time and can't wait to go back.


{top image via JW Marriott}
{bottom image via me}