Monday, February 8, 2016

Update On Caring for the Cox Family Blog Hop

Hi friends!  I hope that you are doing well!  We are ok.  We are fighting off a little cold in our house which is hard when all the kids are home ALL the time!  We'll make it through though.  The weather is GORGEOUS in California right now so I can't wait to get better and go outside to play!

I wanted to give you some updates on the Caring for the Cox Family Blog Hop:

First off, my sweet friend Kim from Scrap Happy Deals saw my post and decided to MATCH my gift certificate post for this hop!  Isn't she the BEST EVER??  If you donate (ANY AMOUNT) to the Cox Family Go Fund Me Page and leave a comment on my original post, then you will be entered to win a $20 gift certificate to Scrap Happy Deals where they have all the latest CHA release, an exclusive line of Dori style notebooks, and so much more!  I shop at this store at least once a month!  If you end up shopping here, please tell Kim I sent you!

Speaking of the Cox Family GoFundMe Page, this blog hop has raised around $500 for the Cox Family!  That is AMAZING!  However, the page is still $4535 away from reaching goal so if your heart tells you it's the right thing and you have a few dollars to spare, please consider donating to this amazing family!

ALSO, REMINDERS: The blog hop is still open!  All you need to do to win is leave comments on the blog hop.  There are over $150 in prizes to be won!  Also, if you want to make a card for the Cox Family there is a LINK-UP HERE so they can see your card online OR if you want to win a $30 gift certificate to Hero Arts please check out Amy's post for details.

Huge thank you to all the sponsors of our hop (CAS-ual Fridays Stamps. Lawn Fawn, SugarPea Designs,) all the designers who participated, and each blog reader for making this a successful event!  The outpouring of love is wonderful!!  

Wednesday, February 3, 2016

Caring for the Cox Family Blog Hop (and Giveaway)

Hi friends!  I hope you're doing well.  I have a very special post for you today.  I am joining with my new friend Karen Kelly to put on a blog hop for our dear friend Ann Cox and her family.  Please join us!  We have AMAZING sponsors, some awesome of our awesome bloggers are offering up giveaways on their blog, and there's going to be a whole lot of beautiful creations too.  I'm the FIRST stop on this hop so I have all the info for you!  

Ann Cox is a fellow card maker and a teacher.  She and her husband Kevin have been together for 20 years and have a little 2 year old boy named Liam.  Kevin is the primary caretaker for Liam while Ann teaches.  Recently, Kevin had to have triple bypass heart surgery and he's having trouble with his kidney (he donated the other to his father.)  This amazing family needs a little help to get through this hard time.  They have had to put Liam in childcare and they have medical expenses piling up.  The amazing Karen Kelly has set up a page to help raise funds for the family.  Please check out their GoFundMe page:  

We have AMAZING sponsors for this hop!  Check out these awesome prizes!
CAS-ual Fridays Stamps $50 gift certificate 
Lawn Fawn Stamps $50 gift certificate 
SugarPea Designs $50 gift certificate 

To enter to win the prizes, please complete the hop and leave comments on each stop.  Bonus entries will be given to those who donate to the GoFundMe page (not required to win.)  Winners will be drawn on Feb 11 and posted right here.  

If you would like to show your support for the Cox Family by making a card and posting it to your blog, there will be a linkup at our last stop CAS-ual Fridays.

Here is my card for this hop.  I wanted to send the family something that would cheer them up so of course I'm sending a card that looks EXACTLY like my daughter.  (I know, I'm weird.)  The stamps are from Mama Elephant and the patterned paper is Doodlebug.  

I'm also offering an additional giveaway.  My friend Kim just opened up a new scrapbook store, Scrap Happy Deals.  I have purchased a $10 gift certificate for this blog hop.  If you make a donation to the Cox Family's GoFundMe page and would like to win, please leave me an additional comment letting me know!  ETA: Kim from Scrap Happy Deals read my post and has decided to match my purchase for this gift certificate!  That means if you donate and leave a comment here you will be entered to win a $20 gift certificate to Scrap Happy Deals!  Thank you Kim!!

Your next stop on this hop is the AMAZING Karen Kelly!   

Here is the full hop list, I've updated with all the permalinks that I could.  If you get lost along the blog hop, please come back here for reference.  

Monday, February 1, 2016

New Title, New Honor

Hi friends!  I hope you are doing well!  We are pretty darn good around here.  Today is the first day of the boys's off track time.  They will be off for five weeks and at this point you should probably cross your fingers that we'll make it through.  I say this in jest.  I love having my boys at home but there is a WHOLE lot of bickering that happens.  

Truth time, last month I was really struggling with who I am versus who I used to be.  I used to be a crafter and a blogger.  That has faded away a lot for me.  There have been a lot of reasons for this but mostly it was having three kids has been really hard for me.  I struggle with having three people in three different life stages who need me for pretty much everything.  Honestly, it's been in the last couple months that I feel like it's finally starting to get more manageable.  I felt like my whole identity was mom and I felt like I wasn't even a very good one since it's just so hard for me and I am always forgetting someone's permission slip and sometimes we have pizza for dinner because I just can't manage anything else that day.

One day, I got an email that shifted how I feel about myself quite a bit.  I had been selected to be on the Unravel Pediatric Cancer Glitter Squad for 2016.  This is not something I applied for or even knew about.  I was selected because the people at Unravel saw the work I put into fundraising for them last year and picked me.  I was floored.  I cried.  A big part of the tears was that someone saw ME.  I mean, they really really saw my heart and gave me the honor of joining them to make this year great for Unravel.
I realized that I'm something else now.  I'm a volunteer.  I'm following a passion to make this world a better place for our children.  And while I hope to get back into crafting and blogging, this new title -Glitter Squad Member- might be the the highest honor I've been given next to the title Mom.  

Thank you for letting me share my happy news with you all!  Have a great week!  

Wednesday, January 13, 2016

Avery's Daniel Tiger Party

Hi friends!  I hope that you are doing well!  We are pretty good.  I'm having a small flair up with my liver but hopefully it will pass soon.

Today, I'm sharing a few things from Avery's birthday party.  My kids LOVE picking themes that I can't just run to the store and buy.  Avery's birthday is a couple days after Christmas and I was just spent so I didn't do a ton of crafting.  I did want to share the few things I made with you.  Most of it came from the PBSkids website.   (I am no way affiliated with PBSkids, I just appreciate that they had a bunch of printables on their site for free.)

First I made this Trolley with print outs and directions from  I used a smaller sized diaper box (the box that holds about 100 diapers) and it was too small for the directions they gave.  I'd say a box that holds about 150 diapers would be better.  I also had to freehand cut the red roof part down because after I put it on my box that was too small, the roof looked way too big.  I used the blue Marvy circle punch for the wheels/light and I think I cut the gray paper at about 1.5 inches in width.  The directions on the site and a little vague.

Here's my little Avery Tiger.  I got the sweater from a local moms group when I posted about trying to find Daniel Tiger items locally.  The lady and her husband made this super sweet sweater for their daughter.  They found a sweater like the ones the kids wear on the show and sewed a Daniel Tiger patch on it.  It's so cute and I'm so lucky that wonderful lady saw my post!  I couldn't find tiger pants so these are actually $3 Walmart zebra print leggings that Dustin dyed orange with Rit dye.  I tried finding red shoes but they were all about $30 and I didn't want to spend that on shoes she might wear once.  The buns are supposed to be her tiger ears.  

I didn't get a picture before the party started since I was running around like a crazy person but at each of the place settings we had a couple coloring sheets (print them here) and I tied a few crayons together with Halloween Divine Twine.  I also put little bottles of bubbles which was a HUGE mistake because we were at an ice cream parlor and I wish I would have put Divine Twine on those too.

Here's Avery with her cake that was a nightmare to get.  It's from Bel Air but if you order one, be sure to call the night before or the morning of to confirm that they actually MADE your cake.  We got to the store and they had NO cake for us.  Finally, they said they would just make us a cake and give us our money back but it would take 10 minutes (which was AWFUL because we just swung by to pick it up on the way to the party.)  It's one of those images they print and put on the cake so I'm sure they have them at different stores.  

Here's the favor I made for the party.  I'm trying not to give so many little dollar store toys to kids for goody bags because well I dislike getting them.  I feel guilty throwing them away but they are usually cheap and break.  I've switched to only doing consumable favors (not just food but things like bubbles, crayons, etc... that can be used up.)  I was going to make cake balls but my friend Summer convinced me to do pretzel tiger tails which they do at Disneyland as Tigger tails.  (They actually have this as an idea of PBSkids too.)  I put them in a long bag and tied them with Halloween Divine Twine which looks great at a tiger themed party.  Dustin made the print out that I placed in the basket.

Have a grrrrrr-rific day, everyone!

Thursday, January 7, 2016

Seasons Givings 4 Winner

Hi friends!  I hope you are well and are having a wonderful new year!  We are doing pretty good over here.  We are trying to get back into the routine of school and work.  It's challenging but we'll make it through.

Today, I'm announcing the winner of my Seasons Givings blog hop prize.

True Random Number Generator  3Powered by RANDOM.ORG

  1. Love your sweet card...Being an awesome mommy takes a lot of work, so you get a pass on the card making bit. PS...You make yummy cookies too so that puts you right up there in the winners section for me ;) PS...Thanks for sharing your birthday (and your daughters too). It's fun to keep up with you that way too. 

YAY Kerry!  Please email me and let me know what store you'd like for your gift certificate.  My email is on the right sidebar under my picture.  

Monday, January 4, 2016

Bring Back Nice in 2016

For my Seasonings Givings post, click here.

In May of 2014, I did something slightly great.  I created the Bring Back Nice Facebook Page where I challenged people to do one kind thing a day, everyday.  I posted a couple challenges.  Then someone said they didn't like the challenges so I stopped.  Well, in retrospect, I think I was making the challenges WAY more complicated than they should be.  I accompanied each one with a long-winded blog post explaining everything in detail.  This is not necessary.

This year, I've decided that I'm no longer going to sit by and let the page I created dwindle.  I've gone the easy route, posting pictures or quotes every now and then.  I've been passive and quiet but that's not who I am.  I was recently inspired by The Compassion Collective where 5 amazing authors teamed together to show that when a lot of people each make a small gesture, the total can be something so very big.

I've also recently talked to my friend Taheerah Atchia about greatness and how people need to strive to achieve their greatness.  Well, who am I to tell you go to out and do something great while I sit in my house and watch Netflix?

Bring Back Nice, that's my baby step towards achieving my greatness (whatever that may be).   Each Monday, there will be a challenge on the page.  It will be a simple thing you can do in your everyday life to make the world a better place.  Anyone will be able to do it.  It will not be something you need to be a certain age, live in a certain place, have a certain amount of money, or any other requirement.  The challenges will be about bringing people back to the goodness they have inside of them that anger, resentment, and cynicism have tried to erase.  Please join me on this journey as we take baby steps towards a kinder and better world.

Thursday, December 31, 2015

Seasons Giving Blog Hop 4

Hi Friends!  I hope you're having a WONDERFUL day!  We are doing great!  The kiddos are going to try to stay up until midnight to ring in the New Year, wish us luck!

This year, I finally got my act together to participate in my friend Latisha's amazing Seasons Givings Blog Hop.  This is the fourth year of this amazing hop.  The hop is just a bunch of crafters and crafting companies giving back to the crafting community.  A huge THANK YOU for the past year.  Each stop on this blog hop will have a giveaway.  It's a wonderful out pouring of generosity and I'm so glad I get to participate this year!  

I made a card for this hop.  :)  By the time this blog hop goes live, it will still be my birthday (Dec 31) so I made a birthday card.  Let's be 100% honest, I don't even really know how to make cards anymore.  I mostly do Pocket Scrapbooking and the cards I made this year usually had the elements provided by my amazing friend Rachel at her crops.  I figured I would just pull out some of my favorite items and let them speak to me.  I used an old collection from Dear Lizzy Daydreamer which I have used also every single bit of.  I've never used so much of a 6x6 pad before, I only have 3 whole sheets left in that pad.  The image is a sticker from the collection.  I added some Chickaniddy enamel hearts and a Paper Smooches sentiment.  I thought it would be cute to stamp the sentiment in pink but it's a little hard to see.  

 GIVEAWAY: Today, I'm giving away one (1) $15 gift certificate to 1 of my favorite online stores.  One winner will be able to pick a gift certificate from either: Butterfly Reflections Ink, Ellen Hutson, or Paper Issues.  Just leave a comment and I will pick a winner and post on Jan 7.

Please follow my blog to see my new posts in the new year.  You can also follow my Heart Hugs Designs Facebook Page.

The next stop on the hop is my DEAR DEAR friend Nicole Maki.  Please check out the rest of the hop:

Lawn Fawn

Scrapbook Cards & Today Magazine

Scrapbook Adhesives by 3L

Reverse Confetti

Technique Tuesday

CAS-ual Friday Stamps

Verve Stamps

Donna Salazar

Richard Garay


Stamp Simply Ribbon Store

Inchie Arts

Avocado Arts

OHscrap (Bossy Joscie)

Rubermoon Stamps

Latina Crafter

A Jillian Vance Design


Your Everyday Stamps

Latisha Yoast

AJ Otto

Kimberly Crawford

Julia Stainton

Laurie Willison

Teri Anderson

Jennifer Gallacher

Vera Yates

Wanda Guess

Nichol Magouirk

Kelly Klapstein

Anabelle O’Malley

Kim Watson

Chari Moss

Laura Bassen

Lydia Fiedler

Lisa Adametz

Alice Wertz

Daniela Dobson

Jenn Shurkus

Lori Craig

Amy Tsuruta

Lisa Henke

Margie Higuchi

Lee Murphy

Lori Tecler

Dina Kowal

Loretta Lock

Darsie Bruno

Marcie Sharp

Veronica Zalis

Barbara Anders

Maria Levine

Dana Joy

Melody Rupple

Keri Sereika

Asia King

Jennifer Ingle

Yvonne Van de Grijp

Beth Pingry

Erica Houghton

Mary-Ann Maldonado

Piali Biswas

Ashley Newell

Nicole Maki

Julee Tilman

Leigh Penner

Christina Griffiths

Lindsay Amrhein

Laura Williams

Debbie Seyer

Christine Emberson

Kerry Urbatch

Linda Lucas

Tosha Leyendekker

Giovana Smith

Bunny Vance

Stacey Schafer

Lee Ann Barrett

Ruby Naz

Julie Dinn

Jill Hawkins

Christiana Reulling

Jodi Collins

Gracie Chavez

Michelle Woerner

Tania Willis

Karisse Schilling

Lori McAree

Ashley Harris

Emily Leiphart

Heidi Blankenship

Coralynn Murray

Tenia Nelson

Pretty Philosophie

Jillian Vance

Misti Oblander

Wednesday, December 23, 2015

Christmas Crafting for Kids

Hi friends!  I hope that you are well!  We are doing ok.  We are getting into the Christmas spirit which is good.  I've been baking all week.  How about you?  What do you bake for the holidays?  I made molasses cookies, chocolate chip cookies, and I tried making saltine toffee but I overcooked it a bit so we are calling it "caramel brûlée bites" this year.  ;)

This last weekend, I had my cousin and some friends over for a Christmas crafting night for the kids. I poked around a bit on Pinterest and came up with a couple crafts that we tried out.  The first was a Christmas card made with washi tape.  I saw THIS PIN and decided to do it with washi tape instead so I didn't have to cut tons of strips of paper.  I pulled a bunch of red, green, and yellow washi and we used some brown washi for the tree trunk.  I used a Stampin' Up punch to punch the stars out of yellow sticker paper from DCWV.  That paper is AMAZING for working with kids!  You don't have to put out any messy glue!  It is textured card stock that's adhesive on the back and they just peel off the back like a sticker.

Next up, we did sugar cone Christmas trees.  In a stroke of genius, I gave each kid their own little cup of frosting and plastic butter knife.  Hooray for no mixing colors or sharing germs!  I also asked each kid what color frosting they wanted and added some food coloring if they wanted.  Avery ended up making a purple tree because she's currently obsessed with purple.  This photo is actually the tree that I made.  It looked like fun so I decided that I should make one too.  I'm quite pleased with it.

I think this craft night will become a tradition.  I asked each family that came to bring a craft and a finger food.  We also made beaded candy canes on pipe cleaners, pompom wreaths, and snowman soup.  It was a fun night!

Have a great day, friends!  

Monday, December 21, 2015

Christmas Cut Out Card

Hi friends!  I hope you are dong well.  We are ok.  I'm trying really hard to get into the Christmas spirit but it's not really working.  Hopefully soon since the clock is ticking!

Here's a card I made at my friend Rachel's crop this month.  She had the card base all cut out for us to embellish.  I added some stamping to the front and inside of mine but I forgot to take a picture of the inside.

I hope you're having a GREAT week!  

Wednesday, December 16, 2015

CTMH Christmas Cards

Hi friends!  I hope that you are doing well!  We are ok other than the little germs that are so persistent this time of year.  Hopefully, we will be germ free on Christmas.  Keep your fingers crossed for us!  Last year, Parker was sick on Christmas and we missed out on the big family celebration.  He can I stayed behind at home where he slept and threw up.  Here's to a better Christmas!  ;)

Speaking of Christmas, today I'm sharing a couple cards I made with my friend Rachel at her crop.  I actually made these cards in November but forgot to post them.  The first one is the one that Rachel designed as her make and take.  I put it together and colored it.  She has one each month featuring her Close to My Heart products.  The second card is my twist on her card which is what I usually do each month so I can blog it and feel like I'm sharing something original.

My card actually came about because Rachel accidentally cut the card base the wrong way so I figured I'd make a card that's horizontal.  I also wanted to use a different stamp to change it up.  Both cards are made with the CTMH Reindeer Bells stamp set, Red Glitter Paper, and White Pines paper.  I used some of Rachel's Touch Twin markers to color the images.  I'm a little rusty.

I hope you're having a great month!  I have a few more Christmas cards to share and some fun blog hops later on.  Also, I picked a winner for my Blogiversary giveaway and it is posted in the giveaway widget.  

Friday, November 27, 2015

Blogiversary Giveaway!

Hi friends!  I hope you are doing well!  We have had a jam packed two days of family fun and we are gearing up for some more!  I'm not even sick of Thanksgiving food yet.  I could really go for some more.

Today is my Blogiversary!  It's been 8 years since I started my blog!  Holy moly!  That's a long time! To celebrate, I'm purchasing and giving away a $16 (it's my lucky number) gift certificate to Butterfly Reflections Ink.  I love this store and I love the Vanessa is following her dreams of owning a scrapbook store!  I think it's really important to support small businesses too!

Right now, Butterfly Reflections Ink is having a HUGE sale!  Vanessa has 20% off the whole store including all the sale and clearance items!  Go get some fabulous new goodies!  (I've used my affiliate link and if you purchase using my link, I will get a small commission.)

To enter the giveaway:
a Rafflecopter giveaway Have a great day, friends!  

Thursday, November 26, 2015

Just Jewelry Black Friday Sale

Hi friends!  I hope you had an AMAZING Thanksgiving!  I just wanted to pop by with a really quick post.

My Black Friday sale on my Just Jewelry website is LIVE!  You get 25% off everything in the store and there are specials items that are marked even lower than 25% off!  It ends at midnight so for the best selection, shop now!