Friday, August 31, 2012

Friday Ramblings

Happy Friday and happy long weekend to all of us!

I wish I was going somewhere fun for the long weekend. Now that we are only 3 hrs away from the coast we must take a weekend trip to the beach.

In two weeks we are flying to Minneapolis! I can't wait to see my friends and family and especially for Miss E to hang out with her cousins and her special friend Mr. O!!

I dream of Miss E having this closet.

Ugh, the thought of painting is not going to be fun. I plan on doing stripes in our mudroom and painting Miss E's room, along with a wall in our bedroom. I also want to do a moroccan stencil print in our bedroom.

love the stripes on this wall and how this gallery wall looks

This is how I want to organize my mudroom. Since, the wall space is small we might be making our own cubby shelf and bench. Everything I have seen on- line is too big and I can probably save $ if we did it ourselves. After all, decorating on a budget is not so easy as I feel all these bloggers and pins on pinterest make it seem. 

Need to get started on our gallery wall. I have wanted to do a gallery wall for years and now I finally have the wall space! I was originally thinking shelves with stacked frames {as seen in the photo below} but, I also like the classic gallery walls with an initial letter, with some framed printable quotes mixed in amongst framed pictures.

I start my new job in 2 weeks! I will only work 12 hrs a week so it will still be nice to have this extra time at home with Miss E, but I do miss not having her in daycare. We saw so many benefits with Miss E being in daycare and we miss that. I miss not getting daily notes, hearing about all the fun she had playing with so and so, how she danced away in music class or seeing her come home with some form of art work.  I miss it even though we are creating our own fun here at home. I  hope to find her a program where she will go two days a week, that is of good quality,affordable, and mostly so she can have that social interaction back in her weekly routine.

Enjoy your weekend!

Thursday, August 30, 2012


The winner of a headband {reader's choice} from the generous Meg of Plum Accessories is..... Morgan! Who hoo!

Morgan- I will be emailing you for your information to pass onto Meg.

Thank you everyone for entering this fun giveaway. 
I hope to do more in the future! If you or someone you know has an etsy site and would like be featured and or/ interested in sponsoring a giveaway or promo to your site please contact me at

Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Fall Splurge

If there is one item I really really want for fall it's this serenity sweater wrap and how neat is this...
It can be worn as a dress! 

PS: Have you entered the giveaway that is happening right now on my blog?!

TLC Book Tour: Millie Fierce Review

This week I have the honor of reviewing another book that is a part of the TLC Book TourMillie Fierce by Jane Manning.

Being a former School Social Worker I was really able to relate to this book as thru my years I have seen what bullying and wanting to fit in with peers can do to a child emotionally and socially.

Millie is a quiet girl who feels she is alway going unnoticed. So one day she decides she has had enough and decides she is going to get fierce! Of course getting fierce isn't going to happen by making good choices and instead she partakes in obnoxious behavior and starts to bully others. Soon, Millie realizes that her actions are unkind and that kindness is the best way to get noticed.

Millie Fierce is a great read to learn the importance of being proud of yourself no matter how other people might make you feel and that kindness will always win in the end.

To purchase this book you may click here.

Friday, August 24, 2012

Friday's Party: Back to School

I have been seeing some adorable back to school play date and party ideas but this party seen via Hostess with the Mostess {A favorite party planning site of mine} is beyond adorable. The detailing that went into this party is amazing!

To see more details of this party click Here

PS: Don't forget to enter my giveaway that is being hosted by Plum Accessories!
You can enter here

Thursday, August 23, 2012

Etsy Shop of the Week and GIVEAWAY!!!

I am so excited to introduce you to Meg, of Plum Accessories. Meg, the owner of Plum Accessories is not only one of my sorority sisters, but she is also one of the sweetest and most talented ladies I know! 

With summer coming to an end and school starting Meg is offering 35% off in her shop on all purchases with the code: endofsummer along with.... giving away a headband {readers choice} to one of my lucky readers! 

Meg, offers headbands from infant- adult along with an assortment of colors and patterns. 

Here are a few of my favorites!

 To see more adorable accessories click here

The sale is good until next Thursday and the winner will be drawn Wednesday night by with winner announced on Thursday!

To Enter:
List which headband is your favorite along with your email address.
*Sorry, drawing is only open to US readers*

For an additional entry become a fan of Plum Accessories on FB with a note stating you are a fan of Plum Accessories in my comment section.

So on your mark, get set, GO SHOP!

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Getting Settled

Slowly but surely we are getting settled into our new home. All of the boxes are finally out of the house and now its time to figure out furniture and how I exactly want to decorate.

Luckily, the home we purchased is painted a nice neutral khaki color that I don't mind so at least we won't have to reprint an entire house! We will be painting Miss E's room, a wall in the master bedroom, and possibly one of the living room walls as well.

I am learning that buying furniture is not as fun as it sounds. Its either cheaply made, the color won't work {i.e. trying to find a kitchen table}, or way too expensive. I have a set budget a

But, thank goodness for Pinterest and some other home sites that have been recommended for decorating and purchasing.

It is great being able to walk to one of the three swimming pools we have in our community. The pool we walk to even has a splash pad area. Miss E loves it.

We have already met so many nice people and Miss E has a new friend! Super sweet people.

and... we have been able to experience rain! Not just once, but three times in the past 3 weeks.

Here are some of our recent home purchases.

Found this lounge series sofa and ottoman in the color shown at the Crate and Barrel Outlet in San Marcos. These outlets are ahhmaazing and we scored a really good deal on both pieces. Best part is both pieces are in perfect condition and we saved over 50%.

barstools for our kitchen counter
We went with the darker seagrass 

Coffee and Console Table for downstairs living room

Best part is every piece we purchased we bought at a discount price.
I did not know this, but most places will give you a new movers discount, you just need to ask! 

Thursday, August 16, 2012

Book Tour Review - Woodrow for President

I am so excited to be hosting my first TLC Book Tour! Today I am reviewing "Woodrow for President - A Tail of Voting, Campaigns, and Elections" by Peter W. Barnes and Cheryl Shaw Barnes.

Woodrow Washingtail is the governor of 'Moussouri' who has big dreams of being the nations "big cheese!" Children will be taken on a journey that starts with Woodrow working hard in school as a young mouse, how he gave back to his community as an adult mouse, how he worked up the courage to run for city council,  mayor, governor, and then thru Woodrow's biggest campaign journey, to be the President of the United Mice of America!

As Woodrow campaigns to be President of the United Mice of America, he will experience primaries, speeches, debates, meeting voters across the nation and spreading the word to go vote.

One can only wonder will Woodrow win the election and become the President of the United Mice of America?! I guess you will have to read to find out!

I truly enjoyed reading this book. I found it to be an easy read for helping children understand how our nation's political system works, the rhythmic stances makes it fun to read, it is a non-partisan story with children being exposed to a brief overview of all political parties, and the pages are nicely illustrated.  With the big election of 2012 only being a few months away I cannot think of a better way to prepare and teach our young children about the importance of an election year than by reading 'Woodrow for President - A Tail of Voting, Campaigns, and Elections!' This is also a must have for elementary teachers!

 Thank you TLC Book Tours for allowing me this opportunity.
You may purchase the book here

What I'm Loving this Week: Etsy Shop Belly Babies!

I ordered these two prints for Miss E's bathroom from Belly Babies which I plan on framing in hot pink frames.

some other cute prints that I adore from Belly Babies are

Leah has many more adorable designs available in her shop and starting today thru August 23rd all cherry blossom readers will receive 15% off your purchase with the code
Plus, its never too early to start shopping for the holidays!

Thank you so much Leah for sharing this discount with my readers!

*If you have an etsy site and are interested in hosting a promo on my blog please contact me at

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Come Visit Miss E over at Mini Fashion Plates

Miss E aka "Ellie Bellie" is being featured over at Mini Fashion Plates today!
Mini Fashion Plates was recently started by my friend Marla, who highlights every day kiddos on what they are wearing, and where you can buy adorable items for the little men and little ladies in your life!

To submit your child please check out Mini Fashion Plates for all the details!

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Blueberry Muffins to Die For

I made these blueberry muffins this morning and I have to say these are probably one of the best things I have ever baked! 

       I found the recipe here and the only change I changed was I added a little bit more milk than what it called for.

Sunday, August 12, 2012

Play Tables for all Ages

Trying to find a play table that isn't too "junky" nor godly expensive was a lot harder than I thought it would be. Here are several picks that are sure to please all price ranges and styles.

Ikea Kritter table for $24.99 is a great price and value. Matching chairs are available in an assortment of fun, bright colors and they each sell for $12.99 a piece.

KidKraft is another good company that makes play/ craft tables. My friends have this table for their little girls and I even borrowed it last year for E's party.  It is very durable and it cleans up nicely. We are still debating on a table for E but this is our front runner.

I love Pottery Barn Kids classic take on their play table. You can save a little bit of money by ordering their 'My First Table' and two chairs as a set online, but with a toddler who I am sure will do nothing but scribble on it with crayon (even if its washable crayon) this table is on the pricier side of $159 + shipping.

Land of Nod has a great art table. I love the paper roll feature on this table. Pottery Barn Kids also has a paper roll feature built into one of their tables as well. I see this table being the perfect table for school aged kids. $200+

Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Southern Rules

I don't think I will ever get tired of hearing y'all { I really hope Miss E will learn how to say Y'all soon} and simply how polite everyone has been. Even the college boys who were working the front door at our resort addressed us as Yes Sir  and Yes Ma'am and I even had a young child hold the door open for me at the store. The best part was his parents were not even around to remind him about his manners. 

I came across some Southern Rules HERE and I wanted to share my favorites.

We don't sweat, we glisten (hello humidity but so far it has been tolerable)

You go to college, you join a sorority( Good thing Miss E is a Delta Gamma Legacy), you become a house wife, you have children, children repeat cycle.

flip-flops are worn all year round

being a Jackie, not a Marilyn

pearls are everyday wear

you monogram everything

and my favorite......nothing is sweeter than a souther belle cheerleader

Now granted Austin is not in the true south like New Orleans, the Carolinas, and Georgia but everything is y'all, there are lots of places for crawfish and delicious BBQ, fried food galore, front porches with adirondack chairs we are learning is a must, lots of Lilly boutiques :), and signs everywhere for cheerleading. 

I am in heaven and I can't wait to have our first visitors! 

Monday, August 6, 2012

Survived the Move... Barely

Last week was a crazy week as it was moving week for us.

 I was able to say goodbye to some amazing friends and enjoyed some wonderful meals with friends at some of my favorite places in AZ.

The packers and movers came last week. Amazing how fast they can pack a house and have it all loaded up in several hours. All, I know is these guys work really hard, I would not want their job, and I am so thankful that we did not have to move ourselves.

As our belongings were being packed up we received a phone call that there were some lending issues. BIG ISSUES.. ISSUES so big that we practically lost our new home due to lenders not talking to one another and each thinking that the other state was handling our loan even though we were in weekly contact with our in-state lender and out of state realtor. Needless, to say our situation went straight to a regional manager, he got stuck picking up the giant mess and our out of state realtor worked some magic. I am pretty sure I have never said words like I have before, nor cried or prayed so hard in a matter of hours. All I know is our prayers were answered, many phone calls were exchanged and the loan was salvaged despite having our closing date being bumped back a week which also meant our trip home has now been bumped back. grr.... This summer has been brutal with unnecessary stress as I feel like if it is not one thing it's another.

moving on..

We left for Austin and began our 15 hr car ride journey by driving through a blinding sand storm and booking a hell hole of a hotel on hot-wire in El Paso. Now, usually hot wire has been amazing and we have stayed at super nice places at amazing rates. I am talking $300 a night places for $100. A friend recommended an area of El Paso to spend the night. I found a deal on hot wire for $66 a night in the area that was recommended. Umm yah, nothing like rolling into El Paso at 1:30am and realizing that No, we are not staying at the new Holiday Inn Express that is right off the freeway but instead the one that looks like a crack house in downtown as apparently downtown is also considered "west side". We drove into the lot, took one look at each other and I started crying. I said, "I can't stay here" and luckily Chris felt the same. Plus, there was no where to park and I wasn't about to leave our packed SUV on some random side street and walk several blocks with a sleeping baby. So back into town we went and where we finally found a room at the Hampton Inn at 2am! {Thank goodness Elle was sleeping} It was so nice, had a really nice free breakfast and for the 5 hrs of sleep with a rate of $129 {the front desk guy gave me a little bit of a deal as I told him our story and he felt sorry for us} I was back to being a happy camper.

Once we arrived in Austin we spent several days at the Barton Creek Resort and Spa. It was so relaxing and beautiful. It is also very family orientated with a baby pool, on site hiking trail, on site babysitting service, fitness classes, kid camps, bakery, bar and restaurant, tennis, and of course golf and spa services. The resort is the same company as the beautiful Dell in Coronado Island/ San Diego California. They also offer ice skating on their property starting Thanksgiving weekend- New Years just as they do at the Dell. We can't wait to go back and visit!

We are in our new home and we are camping inside as we wait for our furniture to arrive and fingers are crossed we will be closing before or on Friday.

Thank goodness for pinterest as I have lots of rooms to fill and I am not the best when it comes to decorating. We are going from a 1300 sq foot home to slightly over 3000 sq foot home.

I never thought buying a home could ever be this stressful.

Love our new community pool and splash pad. The weather has been great so we have taken advantage of evening and early morning walks and or course some pool time.

I need to find a new gym pronto!

It is also a bitter sweet week for me as normally I would be heading back to work as school starts early in AZ. Instead, I am trusting God that his plans for me are to stay home and raise my daughter right now. Ideally, I would love to work part time and run an online baby boutique/ etsy site. More on that to come....

I so miss Trader Joes. Good thing I went before we moved and stocked on some grocery items.
Austin is getting one but not until next year. If any of my AZ/MN friends are reading this feel free to send me some Trader Joe goodies.

If you are still reading this post/ my ramblings.. bless your heart and thanks for letting me vent!