Sunday, October 24, 2010

POTD: Picture of the Day

Fall is here!

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Share in the fun, go upload your favorite fall shots on my Flickr Page!

Saturday, October 23, 2010

Product Review

For the past year or so, I've been dealing with the worst coffee maker ever made.  I don't remember the name of it but it was my true nemesis.  I couldn't pour a cup of coffee without it spilling all over the counter.  It irritated the heck out of me.  My dear and loving husband knew this and kept urging me to just go get a new one, but I'm not one to spend a lot of money on a coffee maker.  So, he surprised me with this baby for my birthday:

This thing is wonderful.  It's clean, it's quick and it makes one helluva cup of coffee!  My favorite accessory is the K-Cup Coffee Filter.  This way, I can use my own coffee rather than buying loads of K-Cups.  I will say however that the K-Cups offer fantastic variety and are incredibly convenient.  

I really am loving this coffee brewer.  I'm having fun trying out new kinds of coffee and I look forward to brewing that first cup in the morning.  The Keurig brewer makes coffee making fun!

Friday, October 22, 2010

Product Review

It's no secret to people who know me well that I love the sun.  I am truly a sun-worshiper and have always revered it and the golden glow it brings to my skin.  That being said, the dangers associated with worshiping the sun are no secret to me and frankly they terrify me.  While outdoors, I try to always wear an SPF on my face and body.   I still manage to get an awesome tan in the summer, or while on vacation in Hawaii.  However, fall is bringing cooler weather so I thought I would give a new product a try.

In the past years, I've used the Jergen's Natural Glow self tanning lotion but I hated the smell and it still managed to give streaks and an orange tint to my skin.  I've been airbrushed before at a salon but at $30 plus a treatment I just couldn't justify it.  So I snatched this product up last week.  I followed the directions by exfoliating in the shower (I shaved too) before I applied it.  I sprayed it on my entire body in less than a minute and simply waited for results.  It says to apply daily until desired results then 1-2 times a week for upkeep.  The first application gave results and to my extreme surprise I haven't noticed a single streak or spot on my entire body.  Seriously, not a single one.  Now that is amazing.  Not even on my feet, or my hands, or my wrists, or my ankles (ok so you get it).  My skin looks naturally tan and it doesn't smell like crackers (I always think self tanner smells like crackers).  

I did 2 applications in a row then called it quits for a few days.  I got great results with 2 applications in a row and then I re-applied 3 days later for upkeep.  

I can honestly say that this is by far the best self-tanning product I've ever come across and has given me results that have rivaled a professional airbrush application at a fraction of the cost.  So if you are dying to get your summer glow back, head on over to your local Target and pick this product up.  I'd love to hear your opinions on how you liked it! 

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Faking it

I'll be the first to tell you that I am no Martha Stewart, and while a part of me wishes I could be crafty and creative in the home, it's not really a priority.  But, I do love baked goods and nice decor, so sometimes faking it is just as good for me. 

Creating memories with the family doesn't have to involve multiple ingredients, or a gourmet cook book.  It can be as easy as running to Super Target and grabbing a box.  Seriously, it's that simple. 

The result:

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Ok, so they don't look as beautiful as some of those amazing gourmet cupcakes out there.  But we here in small town MN could care less.  They tasted fabulous and made us smile.  Sometimes keeping it simple makes it even better.  

This little lady didn't care if we made it from scratch or from the box.  And hey, I could have told you they were made from scratch and you have never known :)

So go out and make some family memories.  Grab your kids, or grab your honey and don't forget to snap some pictures!  I'd love to see them, just upload them to your Flickr account and add them to my Flickr Group

Upping the Ante

Since I announced this contest almost a month ago, my readership has gone up.  Well, not a lot, but it's gone up.  Since I have yet to reach 50 followers I wanted to up the ante so that I can make the leap and buy those cups!  You see, I want another one, but I thought I'd wait until the contest to order one for myself as well. 

So here is what I am going to do.  I'm going to up the ante and add another winner to the contest!  Yep, you read that right, one more winner.  But this winner won't be drawn from a random number, this winner will have to work for her (or his) cup.  If you are so inclined, please refer Mom's Sippy Cup to all your friends.  If your friends leave a comment and include who sent them (your name must be mentioned to be counted) then you will be in the running for your very own Sippy Cup!  The person with the most referrals will automatically win one cup.  The winner of the referral contest will still be eligible to win a second one as well (these make great gifts, remember).  So get referring.  As soon as I hit 50 followers I will close the contest and announce the winners!  

Please note, to be counted as a referral, the friend must leave a comment on this post leaving their name, email and who sent them.  They can also refer to my contest post to be eligible to win their very own cup.  And, the best part is, your friends can refer other people too so the ways to win are almost endless!  Now go start sharing the love!

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Slow down!

I'll be the first to admit that my life goes at a superfast pace.  I feel like I'm always rushing, pushing the kids out the door to head every which way.  I'm always plugged into email, FB, Photoshop, my camera, my Blackberry, the tv.  In fact, I hate being bored.  I always have something on my list of things to do, there is always something weighing on my mind and there is always a task that needs to be accomplished.  I know I'm not alone in this either.  We live in a face paced world nowadays.

On my recent visit to Hawaii, I unplugged.  I relaxed.  I was lazy.  And you know what?  I wasn't bored, not for one millisecond.  I enjoyed the quiet, I read a book, I slept by the pool, I enjoyed a mai tai at noon.  I caught up with good friends and spent quality time with my husband without once being distracted by a nagging email or a screaming child.  It was a special trip in which I have come to realize some important life lessons.

It all began with these picture texts I received from home:

First this one:
 Then this one:
 Then this one:
Can you tell who decided to do the coloring?

In real life, this would have really made me mad.  But I was separated from it and was able to step back and realize that it was really quite funny.  It made me realize that I should shrug more things off instead of letting it upset me and boil my blood.  Kids will be kids and they will do things like color on each other.  

I've decided to extend this into other areas of my life.  I want to slow down, unplug more often and appreciate the small things in life.  Cleaning my house, or getting my work down isn't nearly as important as listening to my kids sing me songs with their ukelele's, or reading a story with my family.  I want to take the time to chat with my sister, or call a friend.  I want home made dinners rather than fast food and I want to take an hour walk with my pup Sarge and take a detour to the park so he and Bennett can play together.  
It's the little things like this that make life memorable.  Not how much money you made, or how many hours you put in at the computer.  

So tell me, what have you done lately to slow down?  Do you take the time to make good memories?  You know, the ones that define you?  It's amazing how life changing a little vacation can be, but I already feel more calm and appreciative of what I have and you can bet that I will be revisiting this post when I feel the stress creep up again!

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

POTD: Picture of the Day {Maui Edition}

I just returned from Hawaii and a major blogging hiatus.  I have a ton to blog about still but wanted to share some of my favorite pictures from my trip first.  

First up, our good friends posing on the beach.  Hawaii is an amazing place to create silhouette pictures.  I just love this one.  So dramatic!

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And I'm pretty sure this may end up on canvas.  I love it.  It really brings me back to the moment.  

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And don't forget, I'm still having a giveaway of 2 fabulous wine glasses!  Pass along to your friends, I am several followers away from the giveaway!

Happy hump day everyone!

Sunday, October 3, 2010

Pleated Messenger Bag

Exactly one week ago I contacted LeeAnn over at Froggylegs to inquire about making a pleated messenger bag for my upcoming trip to Hawaii.  I knew it was a long shot since I leave on the 5th and that would give her approximately 1 week to make the bag and ship it to me and get it here on time but I had to ask anyway.  I could have bought one on Etsy and had it in time, but I support the creative ladies I know and knew that LeeAnn would do a fabulous job.

Later that day I got an email back from LeeAnn telling me should could do it!  I was beyond excited so we started collaborating.  I told her I wasn't picky, but it turns out I was!  I had very specific needs as I need to fit my laptop, my 7D body and 2 lenses in this bag.  Plus whatever else I want to bring on the plane with me.  She rolled with the punches though and created the most amazing pleated messenger bag.  I love the functionality of messenger bags but they are pretty boring and dull, but this bag brings a whole new dimension to the world of messenger bags!  Check it out!

The bag arrived on Friday (5 days from when I contacted LeeAnn!) and came all wrapped up so nicely.

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Isn't the fabric amazing?  We had issues finding something I liked on such short notice.  But, LeeAnn was armed with what I wanted in mind and found this fabulous print.  It is so stunning.

The pleat just might be my favorite part!

The inner lining.  LeeAnn made this bag durable and strong, I will be carrying precious commodities in there afterall!

She added a divider to separate the camera and the laptop (brilliant) and 2 large pockets on either side for my chapstick, wallet and other small items.  It closes nicely with magnetic snaps so it stays closed.

I used this bag yesterday on my shoot with a nine month old and it worked awesomely.  It was comfortable, didn't get in my way and my stuff was easily accessible.  I got my very first compliment too within minutes of arriving on site.  This bag is clearly an awesome piece and LeeAnn did a great job.  If you are in the need for a custom bag, or baby bedding go check LeeAnn out.  She's quick and does a quality job.  I would recommend her to everyone!