Monday, January 30, 2012

Love Actually

I'm fond of Valentine's Day so I thought I would share the love.

When Target's Christmas ornaments went to 90% off I scored a bunch of red felt hearts.  A set of three for a mere 10 cents.  I strung them on some hemp twine and it looked pretty sweet, but I wanted this garland to be a statement piece.  Like a big chunky necklace to pair with your little black dress. 

I added some white pom trim and tied on strips of burlap. Then used sheer gold ribbon to tie on music sheet cones that had been embellished with red glitter hearts and stuffed with raffia.  As a finishing touch I used a little wood clothespin to clip on a vintage red and white 3 for 25 cents (kisses that is) sign.  The whole bit was tied together with some little red metal pails from the Target $1 section - although even those were 50% off because they were considered Christmas.  Score!

A few other ideas to try in February...

Pinned Image
Pinned Image
Betty Crocker
Martha Stewart

Monday, January 23, 2012

Favorites - Working It Out

I'm not a huge New Year's resolution person.  Little reflections and adjustments year-round are more manageable to me than a big blanket statement of change. 

Getting four or five workouts in a week is always top of my list and I know for most people that's a biggie on their resolution list as well.  Here are some of my favorites that make working it out that much better.

Lululemon anything, but I especially love the No Limit Tank and really must have the DTB Duffle.

No Limits Tank                DTB Duffel

I picked up a Sweaty Band at a craft show over the holidays and it adds so much sparkle and fun to my black workout ensembles.  Never slips either - bonus!

Sweaty Bands Viva Diva Super Skinny - Pink

Before my first (and only) half-marathon I discovered Handful bras.  The owner was manning the booth and it was a brand new business.  Now you can find Handfuls at Lucy and other retailers.  Best.Workout.Bra.Ever.

Handful Bra (Courtesy Photo)

Sigg water bottles - cute designs, BPA free.  Now if I can just remember to bring it to class with me every time.

Reef flip flops are my go-to summer shoes and perfect for slipping off before yoga class.  I think I'm on my third pair of the Ginger style.

And last, but not least, a BUDDY is always a favorite.  Whether it's yoga with my husband, hiking with Amy or cardio class with gym buddies, it always helps to be held accountable and show up for your friend.

Thursday, January 12, 2012

Oh the People You'll Meet!

Over the last year, through Petal Pusher, I've had the amazing opportunity of meeting an array of creative individuals focused on building community.  It's been inspiring, motivating and kept me moving forward when I've felt overwhelmed.  Just want to share a bit of who I've discovered and what they are doing to make Scottsdale a great place to live.

You may remember my post about Shauna from JAM.  She transformed a historic home in Old Town Scottsdale into an indie boutique that features sing-a-longs on the porch, crafty classes and artist markets.  JAM was also just named Best Local Boutique by Arizona Foothills Magazine  You can read more about my experience with Shauna here.

Deanna was a vendor at our Magnolia Market show this last winter.  In addition to her darling personalized magnet creations, she also has a blog called Me to the Power of We.  Her posts remind us to slow down, listen, lift each other up and think positively.

I met Jason Levine of the Just Play Music Show through mutual friends. (His wife and son were also in the same class as my son and I at My Gym back when the boys were babies.  Sometimes it's such a small world, isn't it?) Despite a busy career involving international travel, Jason is compiling fun music for the preschool set.  He's one chill guy - if you can't tell just by looking at his awesome chops.  Take a listen here.

Mary-Frances Mullins of Frenchie's Sweets and I were both vendors at a recent in-home boutique.  It didn't take long before we realized we had actually met last summer when our sons played soccer together - I'm telling you - small world!  Neither of us ever mentioned our businesses back then, but I'm sure glad we had a second chance to find out.  Frenchie's Sweets delivers custom baked goods that will knock your socks off and Mary-Frances is just as sweet as her creations.  She will work with whatever theme you dream up and can accommodate for nut, wheat, gluten and dairy allergies.  I think we need these little yummies for my daughter's vintage cowgirl birthday party.

At my first visit to JAM, I met Kelly Bird of Bird's Nest.  She was there with some of her darling repurposed and vintage-inspired home decor items.  Think glitter, chalkboard paint, mason jars, burlap and old silver pieces.  I was immediately drawn to her booth.  A week later, I ran in to her at a party - turns out we have many friends in common and our husbands already knew each other - notice a recurring theme here?  Then I got to talking to her and discovered she was THE Kelly Bird.  Do you ever have those moments?  A few years ago when I first heard of Stella & Dot, Kelly Bird was pretty much synonymous with the name.  She was the keeper of the jewels.  So it was pretty wild running in to her after all these years and having so many common connections.  Kelly is quite an inspiration.  Not only with her creative ideas and sense of style, but also with her outlook and passion for what she does with both Bird's Nest and Stella & Dot

Can't wait to see what connections and people I'll meet along the way in 2012!

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Little House Comes Home

My doorbell rang a few days before Christmas. A box - small, yet heavy - sat there with the return address of an old childhood friend. Puzzled, I brought it inside to the kitchen. As I sliced open the box and slide out the contents, I caught my breath and a flood of memories took its place. The note read:

"...After my mom moved, she gave me some things she found in one of the bedroom closets from our old house. This included...Little House on the Prairie books. I didn't think much of it until my daughter found the inscription in this one - to you from your parents! Here they are for you to pass down to your daughter."

My mom passed away nearly 9 years ago and some of my fondest memories with her revolve around Little House on the Prarie books. We spent every summer sailing in the San Juan Islands and she would read the adventures of Laura out loud to pass our days on the water. My dad would joke, "If I have to hear Ma or Pa one more time, those books are going overboard!"

My mom was constantly reading to me and reading herself. She fostered in me a love of reading, which is still a passion - I serve on the Friends of the Library board, started a couple of book clubs over the years, and have become an elementary school teacher. Reading to my kids and taking them to the library are some of our favorite things to do together.

My mom had saved nearly all my childhood books and after college I passed most of them on to friends who were newly graduated teachers and needed them to start their classroom libraries. I've always regretted parting with them. I still have a few special holiday books from her - a couple inscribed with "some day you can read these to your children".  And now I do.

As I stood at the kitchen island, holding these well-worn and treasured books, tears came to my eyes. The magic of Christmas had arrived via a thoughtful friend. 

Sunday, January 1, 2012

Happy New Year!

Thanks to Desert Mommas I found chic and easy printables from TomKat Studio to add some fancy schmancy to our at-home New Year's Eve celebration.  The polka dot plates and picks are from Hobby Lobby.