Tuesday, July 12, 2011

I have a New Blog!

Yes, a new blog... not just a new blog post, although I am sure you were waiting with baited breath for a new post. No, not so much with this blog, but rather an additional blog. If you are interested in some fun reads I have started 

It is a blog for the more personal side of me. I may share a bit or two about the kiddos, possibly the hubby, some pretty things, maybe a few tid-bits on my biz, but really this is a blog where you will find a more transparent side of me.

I have already posted a few things so please come and check it out. But also please know that it is new, and I am still working on design & layout. 

Enjoy! and Welcome.

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Orange loves Pink

I am a HUGE fan of the pink & orange color combination. It's bright, it's sassy, and it's fun to look at!  Imagine my delight when I saw Pizzazzerie's Flip Flop Summer Party featuring pink & orange.

Vibrant, isn't it?

I think I was most impressed with the use of an orange bell pepper. Brilliant!  The host served chicken salad in these bright orange bell peppers.

And, of course, orange sherbet was served. Would you serve anything else at this party?

I love that a sprig of mint garnished the dish.

To see more details of this summer party (and other fabulous party ideas) head on over to Pizzazzerie.

Now I am off to plan my own summer party!


{all images courtesy of Pizzazzerie}

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Cooking Bridal Shower

A cooking bridal shower is a perfect theme for the bride who loves to cook. 

My niece who recently married her love just a few months ago, had two bridal showers. This one was a cooking theme. I wanted to keep it classy, so I played off one of my previous chandelier designs, changed the colors and included a recipe card with some kitchen themed illustrations from etsy. What do you think?

I have already added this design on pingg

I have been slow to update the invitations page on the Swanky Paper site. In the meantime, if you want this invitation printed, please contact me.

Thursday, April 28, 2011

Life is about Plan B

I can hardly believe that it has been over a month since my last post. At this point I would usually ask myself, "Where has the time gone?" However, I know the answer.

Life has put our family on a new path and it is exciting!  A month ago, the handsome hubs was laid off from work. He was employed in the home building industry ... knowing this it's not such a shocker now, is it? His former company has been handing out lay-off notices for five years now (several times a year). I think we knew this day would come. I was not surprised when he told me the news, in fact, I think I uttered, "OK, let's move on to Plan B."

Plan B started several years ago when hubs decided to get his Contractor's License. Since that time he has been getting referrals for re-modeling work. Picking up side work here and there over the past few years gave him an advantage when the lay-offs came.

This past month has been rather busy for both the hubs and myself. He been busy making connections and has been fortunate to get some great work contracts, with several more lined up. Contracting can be somewhat uncertain however, I am not in the least concerned. If any of you know my husband, you know that his version of relaxing is another person's working hard. He doesn't stop, really, he doesn't. Allow me to illustrate: He had 2 days off between contracts and decided we needed to paint the house ... maybe it's the diet Mt. Dew. 

 I have been busy working on getting a Corporation set up for him (thank you Legal Zoom!), as well as figuring out what we are going to do about health insurance - with our luck (and our history with broken bones) we NEED good insurance.

Along the way, I also got a bit creative and designed his business cards:


I have not intentionally ignored this blog, but as you can see, it's been an exciting month so far ... and a little over-whelming too. We are looking forward to see what Plan B has in store for us.

So, if you're in OC and need a good contractor, I gotta a guy...

Thursday, March 24, 2011

I'm in love

We have a wedding this weekend and I am finishing up the last of the ties for the little boys and the groomsmen. 

While I was finishing up the bow ties my (ancient) sewing machine stopped working. YIKES!!

A quick phone call to my MIL saved the day! 

She offered to lend me her Bernina. (Insert Heavenly Angels singing here) It's like the Cadillac of sewing machines.

Immediately, I informed her that this was not such a good idea for her, because quite possibly she would not get it back. 

I am in love.

Isn't she lovely? She sews like a hot knife slicing butter. Smooooooooooooooth

I have had a slice of perfection and now I am now saving all my pennies so that I can have my very own.

Donations are accepted. 

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

This To Shall Pass

That is my new mantra.

This week began with a bit of excitement.

Our week started off with little Miss sustaining an injury, on the bed no less. The result is a newly fashioned bright pink accessory.

I am beginning to think that our family will be known as the family who has the Orthopedist on speed dial. 

My son has started his own collection. I suppose to him they are trophy's. He will not let me get rid of them. So, here they sit in his room.  

Personally, I hope this is all he will have in his collection.

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Happy St.Patrick's Day

There HAS to be a 4-Leaf clover in there somewhere!

Happy St. Patrick's Day

Now, go have some corned-beef & cabbage!

Wednesday, March 16, 2011


Often times I get so caught up in what I am doing, what the kids are involved in, the latest project my hubby wants to do, and all the little meaningless things that come up, that I rarely stop to rest.

In rest, I can truly reflect on the beauty that surrounds me; the laughter of my boy, the sweetness of my daughter's curls, or the bright green leaves announcing spring.

Today I am grateful.

Grateful for my family, grateful for my health, grateful for love, grateful for my faith, & grateful for my forever friends.

Be Grateful.

Image from here

Monday, March 14, 2011

Vintage Giorgio Armani Re-fashion

I was lucky enough to go to an Estate Sale a few months back. This sale was probably the best one I have ever been to; vintage dishes, handbags, and tons of clothes. The owner of everything had expensive taste AND it was a huge plus for me because most of the clothes were around my size.

Fast forward to just a few weeks back... While I was purging my house I found my stash of clothes that I picked up ... I use the term "found" loosely ... you see they were in a bag on the floor of my closet. (I have not quite made it clean my closet just yet...)

I went through the bag and tried on (again) a few of the items I picked up. One was a fabulously Fall, plaid skirt. I nabbed it because of the style. It buttoned in the front & tied in the back... but not like you would think. Take a look:

Cute, no?

Every once and a while I would put it on to wear, and then take it off. I wasn't in love with the look of it.

I think the problem with it (for me) is that this is a high waisted skirt. There is no getting around this, while still preserving the button front & tied back. Honestly, that is my favorite feature and I didn't want to touch that.

So ... I cut it in half. Well, almost. I cut several inches off the bottom and hemmed it.

It's perfect! Pair this *new* skirt with a fitted brown tee some fun T-Strap heels and I am ready to go!

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

An Angel Among Us: Lessons from Kim

I hadn't planned to blog much this week. But my heart hurts and I can't stop thinking about my dear friend and her family. Sometimes it feels better to write it out so here goes...

Kimberly lived her life with purpose. She was a devoted Wife, Mother, Sister, Daughter, Aunt, & Friend.

She was my friend.

To know Kim was to love her. You would love her if for no other reason, simply because she loved you. She had the ability to make everyone think she was your best friend. Sincerely. 

I want to honor Kim by sharing some of the lessons she taught me.

Get a sitter and do out with your hubby - even if you just get in the car and drive to get a cold refreshing beverage.

When Robert and I were newly married, before we had any kids, Kim and her husband, Robby, would call, tell us they got a baby-sitter, and invite us to go out for a drive. I didn't get it until after we had kids. Lesson: Who cares what or where date night is; you are with your love and away from the kids. 

Be your kids Mom. Sounds like a no-brainer right? Kim was supermom. Her life was her kids. She had 5 of them and loved every one of them to her core. She sacrificed so much for them, but to her it was never a sacrifice. She taught them how to be kind, loving, courageous, giving, and to love Christ.

Boys will be boys. Kim's oldest 3 are boys. Her boys think she is the coolest mom - EVER. Not only has she supported and encouraged these boys with everything from sports to general playtime, but she gave her boys such freedom to explore the world and get dirty, messy, and everything in between. The more dirty, the better!

Faith and a love of Christ. She taught her children to have faith in God and instilled a love of Christ in them.

The last time I saw Kim was about 2 weeks ago. We chatted in the hall at church. One of her boys was in tears and I asked her what was wrong. Kim informed me that he was sad because they were leaving to drive back home, and that was sad because he wanted to stay to go to Primary. It melted my heart that this 10 year old boy was sad to leave church.

Give. Give of yourself, give of your time, and give of your talents. Kim was a giver and a doer. She was the first to lend a helping hand wherever needed. It didn't surprise me that he final act on Earth was to serve others. Even in death she gave of herself. As an organ donor, Kim gave the gift of life to 4 people in need.

Speak with Love. I never once heard Kim utter a negative remark towards anyone.

The world lost a beautiful soul, but her memory of love and kindness will live on.

If you feel so inclined, the family has set up a memorial fund to assist the 5 children that Kim left behind.

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Beach Theme Wedding

I am currently working on an order for an up coming bridal shower using my classy Starfish invitation. 

It got me thinking about having a beach wedding. And since I have A.D.D. design tendencies, I can't help but turn to the web to see what others have done. 

If I were to plan a beach theme wedding or bridal shower I just might do something like this: 

I love the idea of giving away sand in a bottle. My hubs and I met on Balboa Island. If we had chosen a beach theme for our wedding, how cool would that be to give sand from the island in mini bottles? 

p.s. the starfish invitation is also available at pingg.

table setting image via October Hill
cake via envy cake
pom pom table via Martha
hampton's sand, centerpiece & groomsmen
via Amorology & Amelia Lyon

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Spring Garden

I am currently dreaming of having a garden full of ranunculus flowers. I love the fullness of the petals and all the bright colors.

Once in full bloom (or almost full) I will pick them out of the garden and bring them inside.

Then, I would put them in a gorgeous arrangement
It is March.

The perfect time to start planting these gorgeous flowers.

A soon as the nights stop dropping to freezing levels I will plant my flower garden!

image 1 via GardenSnob
image 2 via SweetStylings
image 3 - I don't remember. I think I've had this image saved on my computer for a while now

Friday, February 25, 2011

From the Desk Friday: All Pink Bridal Shower

My niece is getting married and we're throwing her a bridal shower!  My sister in law is the brains behind her upcoming shower. She oozes with creativity! With all of her fantastic ideas and great style it's going to be fun! 

We settled on this all pink design for the invitation. It goes nicely with the all pink shower we have planned.

I am re-doing the invitation section on my website at the moment. In the meantime, if you are interested in using this design for an invitation please contact me.

I have already made this new design available on pingg. Check it out!

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Mardi Gras: The Floats

I love watching the Rose Parade on New Year's Day. I love seeing all the amazing floats that were made using nothing but flowers, leaves, grains & seeds. Truly that's talent. One year I even dragged my husband and (at the time) our two little ones on over to Pasadena to check out the floats up close. They were quite spectacular. Seeing all the work that went into the details was fascinating to me. 

But since this post is about Mardi Gras and NOT the Rose Parade...

Did you know that Mardi Gras not only has a parade but also floats?!! In doing some searching around the interwebz I realized that Mardi Gras is pretty much a BIG deal in the south. In my little world over here in SoCal, I had no idea how many cities in the South actually put on festive street parades and parties. 

 um. this is kind of scary

tribute to Marilyn Monroe

 love the glitter over the eyebrows

quite the colorful fish

maybe another poseidon?

OK, so these are not as cool as the Rose Parade floats, but still very cool. Personally, I think this just may be the coolest one...

 Yes, those are legos

Give me a jar of mod podge, a bit of paint, maybe a few legos and I'm sure my *almost* talented hands could make a float, ... right?! 

Mardi Gras Party: Part 2

Once again I am posting about Mardi Gras, only this time it's all about the food! 

As part of the celebration of Mardi Gras, it is traditional to bake an oval cake in honor of the three kings. Aptly named the King Cake. The shape of a King Cake symbolizes the unity of faiths. Each cake is decorated in the traditional Mardi Gras colors: purple which represents justice, green represents faith and gold represents power. A small baby, symbolizing the baby Jesus, is baked into each cake. 

While custom holds that the person who finds the baby in their slice will be rewarded with good luck, that person is also traditionally responsible for bringing the King Cake to the next party or gathering.

Moving on to other delicious-ness, you can't really have a Mardi Gras fete without the Cajun food. Personally, I am not fond of spicy food, but I am a HUGE fan of the not-so-spicy Jambalaya - and all the calories that come with it!! 

I came across a "Low" Fat-Tuesday Jambalaya recipe that I have saved to make my family for dinner on Mardi Gras! Doesn't this look yummy? Consider yourself invited! 

And shall we move on to the best part? The sweets!  

If you have never tried a Beignet, you really should. The Beignets are famous and practically a staple at a Mardi Gras fete. Just look at the yummy-ness. A pillow of fluffy goodness all covered with powder sugar ... is your mouth watering yet? 

And if the beignets are not enough, what about these festive mask sugar cookies from Crave Indulge Satisfy. They are almost to pretty to eat! 

Or instead of making your own cookies - you can buy these from Etsy

Get on it already and plan your Mardi Gras party! 

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Mardi Gras Party: Part 1

Mardi Gras is just around the corner so I thought it was fitting to do a post on this party of all parties. 

Is Mardi Gras just another excuse to throw party? OK, so maybe it is. But the history of Mardi Gras has some religious ties...

According to Wikipedia:

The terms "Mardi Gras" "Mardi Gras season", and "Carnival season", in English, refer to events of the Carnival celebrations, beginning on or after Epiphany and ending on the day before Ash Wednesday. Mardi Gras is French for "Fat Tuesday" (in ethnic English tradition, Shrove Tuesday), referring to the practice of the last night of eating richer, fatty foods before the ritual fasting of the Lenten season, which started on Ash Wednesday.

So in a nutshell, Mardi Gras is an all out binge-fest before you give it all up! In that case ... Let the binge begin!

This year, Mardi Gras is on March 8th. Here are a few tips from around the web to help you plan your Mardi Gras event:

You can't very well throw a party without inviting all your friends. To save a few bucks on printing, check out pingg for some fantastic invitations. 

 via pingg

Mardi Gras isn't much fun without a super cool feathery mask! Since I am a DIY-er, I found a pretty easy tutorial from The Flirty Blog on how to make mask.

She took this butterfly mask ... 

adorned it with feathers and ended up with this
super cute, right? 

If you are not a DIY-er and simply want to buy a mask, Etsy is your place for envy-worthy masks. You would certainly be the hit of the party with a mask like this

or maybe some else from of the shop of La Plume de Ville.

And, if you need a last minute mask ... how about printing one? I found this fancy printable mask

Stay tuned for Mardi Gras: Part 2 ~ all about the food! 

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

From Date Night to Urgent Care

Instead of date night last Friday night, I got to spend the evening in Urgent Care!

My little Prince slipped on the wet bathroom floor during bath-time (maybe that travertine wasn't such a great idea). I still have no idea what my little guy cut his head on...

He was admiring his new eyebrow when I proceeded to snap a few pictures.

Somewhat reminiscent of another little guy I made for pingg.com  ...

When it Rains it Pours

Last week a tornado us!

3 kids.
4 different ailments.


Little Miss had a double ear infection.
She is now resting comfortably. hooray for modern medicine!


Mr. Handsome came home from school last week with a fever. It had me a little on edge because this high fever was not going down. Thankfully, before I was about to head on over to the ER at 4AM, his fever finally broke!


Little Prince had a nasty cough.
Thank you albuterol.

Then, Prince slipped in the bathroom and sliced his eyebrow.
Thank you Dr. Z in urgent care for stitching him up.

My little guy's only complaint was that the stitches were not pink!

He WAS resting comfortably until an ear infection plauged him today.


Thursday, February 10, 2011

Sometimes ....

... finding a beautiful bouquet of roses on the front porch is just the thing to brighten my day!

Thursday, February 3, 2011

Re-fashioned Dress

In my recent purging efforts I have accumulated a few projects that were either never finished or never started.

This dress is one of those projects:

While doing a little treasure hunting at a local thrift store, I came upon a dress that caught my eye.

It didn't just catch my eye, I was totally drawn to it.

I absolutely loved the colors of the fabric. And I loved that the dress style was Asian inspired. I HAD to have it!

So I bought it knowing it was a bit large ... see?

(I would like to thank my 3 y.o. for taking this picture)

I dusted off the ol'sewing machine, ripped a few seams, made a few snips, and stitched it all back together to make it fit perfectly. All the while channeling the talents of my friend Carrie.

The end result has become my new favorite dress. And it only cost me $4.00.