May 2014 archive

Why I Blog and How to Start

Why did I start to blog?

I have all of these creative thoughts in my head and some days I just feel that they need to get out so new ideas can enter and so on. I thought a simple blog about my crafts, yarn making and general life would be a great outlet for these thoughts and ideas.

Never did I think it would amount to anything more than what it was intended – a web log of my life.

How did I get started?

I chose a blog host that will let me have complete control over what I post and how I post it. I pay for the blog service because I wanted to advertise or write sponsored posts with out any question.

I suggest if you are starting out try Web Hosting Hub. They offer hosting, blog templates through WordPress, and domain names for a low monthly cost of $4.99. It really is a great deal, since other sites charge just that for the domain name and some blog companies charge more than that a month. It's a one stop shop. The staff is the nicest group of people you could ever encounter! They will walk you through everything step by step. Love Them!

 

 

What's happened since I started blogging?

I have met some amazing people and had lunch with a group of bloggers which is a crazy thing, cameras clicking when the food arrives and photo shoots around the lunch venue. I have a paying gig as a Kid's craft post contributor and I'm part of a Design Team for the Buckle Boutique. I have worked with several craft supply companies reviewing products. I love the opportunities that have come my way and the doors that have been opened just because, one day I sat down and posted about my Circus Obsession.

Do I do this for the money?

A lot of bloggers blog for an income. While money is nice, I blog more for an outlet like I mentioned above. Can you make money? – yes. Have I made money?yes. I use program such as Google Adsense and that has generated some money. I use Passion Fruit Ads to help place the ads on the side bar and I have made some income from that. I work with affiliates and I write sponsored posts.

 BUT my most important post of all times is my FREE Printable Santa Letter and Envelope. It's a post I created a couple years ago and I update it every year with a new date. It shows the reader how to print an envelope template that actually cancels the stamp from the North Pole and completely customizable letter from Santa to place in that envelope. It makes kids happy. That is the most rewarding thing my blog has ever done.

 FTC Disclosure Statement: This post contains affiliate links and I will be compensated if you make a purchase after clicking on my links.

BooksTo.Me 3 Month Subscription Giveaway

 

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An amazing company that takes your Instagram Photos and makes them into an awesome hard cover book. I wrote a great review that you can find here which details the process, or visit their website at BooksTo.Me for more information!

Today, you can enter to win a 3 month subscription so you can try out this great company!

Here are some highlights from my April – May book.

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This is a sponsored post written by me on behalf of Blog Buzz 2 Go for BooksTo.Me. As always, opinions are 100% mine.

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Sparkle Clipboard

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I'm over the moon with the Rhinestone Trim avalible from The Buckle Boutique. It is easy to cut and can be ironed on fabric but a hot glue gun works great on all other surfaces. I used it along with other Buckle Boutique products and Paper goods from DCWV to make this fun clipboard that can hang in my office and be used to tack or clip items to.

So, how did I make it?

I started with a base of silver Dazzling Diamond Sticker Sheet to cover the entire clip. That way the whole clip sparkled even in the spaces between the trim.

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Next I went mad with the hot glue gun. I glued a large piece of trim across the widest part of the clip and used a different trim for the middle of the clip.

I ended with attaching a slide to the clip by threading ribbon through the hole and slide, then tying it into a bow. I glued on some of the mesh flowers and the clip was totally blinged out!

For the board, I used a sheet of cork paper from DCWV.

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It has a peel and stick back, which went on quick and easy. Now the clipboard has a cork surface to tack things to as well as clip.

I used washi tape to fill the gap between the edge of the cork paper to the top of the clipboard.

I clipped a saying cut from the DCWV chalkboard collection.

Pretty and simple, the way I like all my crafts! Hope you love it and add some bling to your life.

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I'm part of The Buckle Boutique's Design Team

The Buckle Boutique's Website // Blog // Facebook Page // Twitter // Pinterest

DCWV's Link Listing  Website // Blog // Facebook // Twitter // Pinterest

 

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received one or more of the products or services mentioned above for free in the hope that I would mention it on my blog. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will be good for my readers. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

American Girl Doll Summer Giveaway!

You've been waiting for it and the time has arrived for our third American Girl Doll Handcrafted Wardrobe Giveaway. This time the contributors have outdone themselves and created an incredible summer wardrobe. You are going to love it!! This fabulous giveaway is brought to you by the following co-hosts, sponsors, & contributors~

1. Diana of Diana Rambles – Diana aka FreeStyleMama, the coordinator of this giveaway, is a self-described creative crafty mama of 3 who blogs about food, crafts, family & fun. She also is a blog designer & seamstress.
2. Amy of SewsNBows – Amy is a fabric hoarder and sewing pattern collector who enjoys sewing children's clothing and accessories. Her beautiful creations are showcased on her blog.
3. Millie & Kristina of 2 Crochet Hooks – Millie and Kristina, a Mother and Daughter team of Fiber Crafters, Entrepreneurs and Environmentally Concerned Parents. Blogging about Crochet, Crafts, Recycling, and Fun!
4. Stephanie of The Tip Toe Fairy – Stephanie is a stay-at-home mommy to 3.  She blogs about crafting, cupcakes, book reviews, and more.
5. KC of The Real Thing with the Coake Family – KC is a stay at home mom of two cuties who are 11 and 7. She blogs at The Real Thing with the Coake Family which is about living the creative life with her family, while keeping it real along the way.
6. Debbie of Heartbeats~ Soul Stains – Debbie is a wife, mother of 7 and a nurse that has survived many obstacles. She share stories about her life living in controlled chaos.
7. Janell of Saving you Dinero – Janell is a stay-at-home mom and blogger at Saving You Dinero, a blog dedicated to "saving you time and money, from kitchen to store and so much more." Janell enjoys baking, shopping online, and saving money by scouring the internet for the best deals and coupon codes.
8. Lynn of Turnips 2 Tangerines – Turnips 2 Tangerines is Lynn's Little Kitchen in the Big Woods of Northern WI is where she shares with you, her family tested and approved recipes, kitchen tips and many adventures traveling throughout Wisconsin.
9. Emily of Naptime Creations – Emily is an adventure loving mom who lives in Hong Kong with her husband and two boys. When she's not with her family or friends you can find her sewing, cooking, taking photos and blogging.
10. Jenny of Learning and Growing the Piwi Way – Jenny is a proud wife and mama who enjoys blogging about teaching her kids, the books she reads and food. With another job relocation always just over the horizon most of the projects she writes about are an attempt to distract her from packing.
11. Laura of Laura Kelly's INKlings – Laura Kelly is a licensed artist and creative project designer for ilovetocreate.com. She blogs her journey with hopes of inspiring and stimulating creativity in others.
12. Stephanie of A Geek in Glasses – Stephanie loves all things Vintage and crafty and her house shows it. She just got AG Doll Molly McIntire for Christmas because she wants to have a Victory Garden and loves all things 1940's!!!
13. Lisa of Crazy Adventures in Parenting – Lisa Douglas is an Army wife raising seven kids sharing humorous parental war-stories, yummy homemade family-friendly recipes, craft tutorials, hilarious family videos, and much more at CrazyAdventuresinParenting.com. Lisa's on a journey to savor every "small" moment, finding the humor in the joy in everything (even diapers and laundry).
14. Char of Doll Diaries – Char is the founder and blogger at Doll Diaries where girls of all ages are inspired to create, play and share doll related activities. She is excited for the second summer of Camp Doll Diaries – a free, online summer camp with new themed activities for girls of all ages each day.
15. Ayelet of The Graceful Rose – Ayelet is the owner of The Graceful Rose shop, is a wife and mama to two adorable girls. Her blog is a bit about her daily life, with tips and tricks that she's learned along the way.
16. Anna of Doll It Up – Anna shares projects and inspiration to sew, craft and create for dolls. From easy to advanced projects come and create, repurpose and PLAY!
17. Rachel & Donna of Once Upon a Sewing Machine – The sewing machine has always been a place for us to come together as mother and daughter team. It is a place where we can brainstorm, laugh, cry, catch up after being apart and share new projects.
18. Michelle of Crafty Little Me – Michelle is wife and mother to two cats and one playful pup. Her site is a way for her to document and share her passion for big projects, events, etc., and more importantly, planning and organizing these things and seeing everything come together in the end.


Sonnet of SohoSonnet Creative Living   Becky of Plushie Patterns
Allison of Dream a Little Bigger   Lizzy of The Muddle-Headed Momma
Lindsay of My Creative Days   Harriet of Posh on a Budget
 Lisa of Chronically Content   Carmody of Paper & Fox
FreeStyleMama – Hawaiian Collection & Embroidered Tote Bag
Naptime Creations – Mushroom Outfit   Doll Diaries – T-shirt & Pajamas
Laura Kelly's INKlings – Patriotic Outfit   SewsNBows – Pet Set & Outfit
Darlin Girl Creations – Snoopy Outfit   Tickie's Treasures – Vintage Outfit
123 Mulberry Street – Outfit & Hat   A Bee Line – Beez Shoes
Jazzy Doll Duds – Romper Outfit   Karen Mom of 3 – Floral Outfit
  Gina's Craft Corner – 4 Bags   Aunt Sissy Originals – Patriotic Outfit
Once Upon a Sewing Machine – 2 Outfits   2 Crochet Hooks – Bedding Set
  GiGi's Doll Creations – Patriotic Outfit   Jessie's Girl Clothing – Polo Outfit 
Pickled Okra – Reversible Outfit   Meatloaf and Melodrama – Flower Outfit
Doll It Up – Tutu Set   The Graceful Rose – 2 Dresses
Cats Meow – Floral Dress   The Real Thing with the Coake Family – Dress Form
The Tip Toe Fairy – Skirt Set   Camelot's Treasures – Shorts Outfit

Enter the giveaway using the Giveaway Tools entry form below.
18+ yrs, US & Canada Only. Official Rules at bottom of the entry form.
Bonus entries unlocked after required entry.
The more entries, the better chance you have of winning.

This giveaway was coordinated by Diana of Diana Rambles.

The Epic Fairy Garden

WE are in love with Fairies and our Fairy Garden. Each year is gets a little bigger and we make new items to please the fae.

You can follow the links below to different tutorials on how to create your own fairy garden as well as what plants to use and other fun stuff!

How to make your own Fairy Door

Fairy Knitting Basket

Mini Frames for Fairy Houses

Fairy Garden Plant Stand

Fairy Thimble Chair

Fairy House Bathroom Vanity

 

Twinkle Lights

Fairy Garden 2012

May Day Fairy Festival

Plants for the Fairy Garden

Very Own Fairy Dust

Celebrate Children’s Book Week AND Giveaway!

Welcome to the 2nd Annual Children’s Book Week Kid Lit Giveaway Hop, hosted by Youth Literature Reviews and Mother Daughter Book Reviews!

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We are celebrating Children’s Book Week (May 12 to 18, 2014) by providing all of YOU, our loyal followers, with the opportunity to win fabulous children/teen’s books, gift cards, cash, or other prizes by hopping around to the 100+ participating blogs/authors listed below in the Linky List (see end of post).  What better way to celebrate Children’s Book Week?

By now you should know that we LOVE Fairies! You can check out all of our awesome Fairy links here. Today we are giving away one of our favorite fairy books! Enter to win!

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I'm giving away one of the cutest Level 2 Reading books that we have found. This Rainbow Magic series has a larger vocabulary and longer sentences. It has more than just sight words and simple sentences, this is a much better Level 2 Reader than some other books that are considered a Level 2.

The Rainbow Magic series has great cast of Fairies that will make your little one fall in love with reading!

Join the Rainbow Fairies in an early reader adventure!
The Rainbow Fairies' unicorn friend, Alabaster, is moving away to the royal stables. He'll miss the enchanted forest, but most of all, he'll miss his herd-and his friends the fairies! The sisters are upset to see him go, but they know they will be able to visit Alabaster, and hear lots of stories about life at Fairyland castle.

 

Prize: A copy of my daughter's favorite Level 2 Reader Book- Best Friends in Fairyland

Contest ends: May 18th, 11:59 pm, 2014

Open: US only please

How to enter: Please enter using the Rafflecopter widget below.

Terms and Conditions: NO PURCHASE NECESSARY TO ENTER OR WIN. VOID WHERE PROHIBITED BY LAW. A winner will be randomly drawn through the Rafflecopter widget and will be contacted by email within 48 hours after the giveaway ends. The winner will then have 72 hours to respond. If the winner does not respond within 72 hours, a new draw will take place for a new winner. Odds of winning will vary depending on the number of eligible entries received. This contest is in no way sponsored, endorsed or administered by, or associated with Facebook. This giveaway is sponsored, hosted, and managed byStephanie from A Geek In Glasses.

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Ribbon Slide Bracelet

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Here is one of the easiest ways to add bling to your outfit! These pretty satin ribbon bracelets look great for a Summer Wedding or add a black ribbon to match your fave LBD (little black dress). All you need is one great rhinestone slide! Next add ribbon remments! The sky is the limit.

Visit The Buckle Boutique for a great selection of rhinestone slides. Mine is the Lace Inspired Slide.

I like a multi wrap for my bracelet, but you could just have a simple once around bracelet.

For this cream stain bracelet I measured 18". I usually wear a 7" bracelet, so twice around would be 14" I left a little extra to tie a bow.

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Cut the ends of the ribbon at angle and use a fray stop or tacky glue to secure the ends. Let it dry completely. The ribbon will keep it's clean cut that way.

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Simply slide the rhinestone slide on and wrap the ribbon around the wrist and tie in place.

I love the veristility on one slide and multiple colors of ribbons. Match it to every outfit you own!

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I'm part of The Buckle Boutique's Design Team

The Buckle Boutique's Website // Blog // Facebook Page // Twitter // Pinterest

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received one or more of the products or services mentioned above for free in the hope that I would mention it on my blog. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will be good for my readers. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

Cheap Plants for a Fairy Garden

As I have posted in the past we have a large fairy garden. We add plants to it each year. Lucky for us we have a great place in our yard for moss to grow, so we transplant it to the garden without any extra cost. In the past we have always added a couple of annual flowers and some succulents.

This year we headed to the garden center only to find that succulents have become quite expensive!

(Apparently fairy gardens are very popular and so are succulents.)  

Then it hit me, we’ll use herbs! Thyme in particular. They had 3 different types of ground cover thyme. We chose 2 that are very different in appearance but still would spread as a ground cover and they are perennial so they will come back next year!

One herb plant cost less than half the cost of one succulent. So my daughter was excited that I left her get 2 herbs instead of the one succulent she had picked. (Although it was adorable, miniature hens and chicks, but $6.99, no way!)

There are many miniature herbs that would work great for fairy gardens. Here are some suggestions:

Minus Thyme

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and Wine and Roses Thyme, both a great ground cover and the Wine & Roses blooms fragrant pink flowers

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Corsican Mint, it is a ground cover and has the cutest tiny leaves. Plus has the kids play the mint scent fills the air. (Beware the spreading possibilities of mint – they will take over)  

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Golden Oregano is a spreading plant that if you keep it trimmed makes a nice addition to the fairy garden with it’s pretty leaves.

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Sweet Woodruff attracts fairies, plus it’s a low fragrant ground cover.   

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