Sunday, June 28, 2015

Sunday Bests June 28, 2015

Hi friends!  I hope you are well!  We are ok.  It is getting hot hot hot here!  I hope you are staying cool wherever you live.

Here are my Sunday Bests for this week.

1. Watermelon Lemonade from Bath and Body Works.  This scent is my absolute favorite for summer!  I actually like it all year long.  (I don't mind summer scents all year long but I only like fall/winter scents during fall/winter.  Is that weird?)  I've tried ALL of the Watermelon Lemonade products from B&BW except the Wallflower because that's not a product I use at all.  I love everything I've tried but I think the 3 wick candle is my favorite.  The scent fills the house and it burns for a good amount of time.
2. Valencia Orange Refresher with 1 pump of peach syrup from Starbucks.  I can't believe I haven't taken a photo of this.  My friend Leslie Ashe was the one who recommended to add in the pump of peach.  It really does take the flavor to the next level.  It's a small caffeine boost, nice for the afternoon, and it's very fruity and refreshing.  Also, I've tried getting the Refreshers that you can buy packaged and I do not like them nearly as much as the drink you order from Starbucks.  That's just my opinion.

3. Do It on a Dime YouTube Channel.  I love Kathryn and her peppy attitude!  Her tips for organizing with Dollar Tree items are just my favorite!  I've implemented several of her tips into my home and I LOVE them!  I'm not good as organizing and I love that Kathryn makes me feel like I can do it on a small budget.  She also has fun and inexpensive DIY projects and frugal recipes too.  She inspires me a lot!

4.  Just Jewelry Wayfarer Sunglasses*.  These are a MUST HAVE for summer.  I currently have the brown pair that is sold out but these are the same ones just in black.  I've had mine for almost 1.5 years and they are still going strong.  I love the way they look on my face!  They flatter my larger face shape and the fit is nice, no sliding off my face.  I'm going to pick up these black ones next just to have a backup.  *(This link will lead you to my personal JJ site and if you order, I will receive commission.)
That's all for this week.  What are YOUR weekly favorites?  Leave them in a comment below, I'd love to check them out!  

Friday, June 26, 2015

Friday Fives: Current TV Sitcoms

Hi friends!  I hope you're doing well!  We are ok.  I'm very slowly getting better.  My mom just left after spending 3 weeks here to help me out and we'll see how the next week goes.  Wish us luck!

While I was doing the Sunday Bests for the last week, I just had a thought that there were so many things that I like that I've never shared on my blog.  I've decided to do a weekly top 5 list.  There are so many things that I want to share like my favorite tv shows, my favorite beauty YouTube gurus, my makeup favorites,  books that I like to read over and over, things I like to drink, and just everything.  I think I will keep up the Sunday Bests as those are a weekly favorite of what I like right at that moment whereas Friday Fives will be all different things and who knows what will happen as it progresses.

Since TV is on hiatus for the summer, I thought I'd share 5 of my favorite sitcoms that are still running.  If they sound interesting to you, you could binge watch them and be caught up for the fall season!

1. Undateable.  This is such a funny ensemble cast!  The premise is that there's a group of friends who are all quirky, awkward, and undateable.  You get to watch as they fumble their way in and out of dating relationships.  The show is ridiculous and funny.

2. Brooklyn Nine-Nine.  I've mentioned this show before in a Sunday Best but I still love it.  It was probably my absolute favorite show of 2014.  Andy Samberg is the main character and he's so funny! This show also has a great ensemble cast.  It deals with the humorous side of being police officers and the relationships that they form.  This is one of the first shows in a very long time that I have re-watched.  I've seen every episode at least twice.

3. Big Bang Theory.  I'm sure you all already watch this show.  It's about a group of geeky guys and their neighbor who lives across the hall who is trying to become an actress.  The show has progressed beyond that as the characters have grown up a bit and gotten into relationships.  This is the show that most closely relates to my life as my husband and his friends are very much into video games, sci-fi, gadgets, etc... whereas myself and my friends tend to go more towards pop culture.

4. Fresh off the Boat.  I wrote a whole blog post about this show.  As a daughter of Asian immigrant parents, this show makes me laugh my butt off!  Some of the things that happen are SO ridiculous but they really did happen to me!  Like when the mom won't let the kids turn on the air conditioner in the summer because it costs too much money.  I guess that isn't THAT ridiculous but it strikes a cord with me.  I think this show just shows a culture that people might not know a lot about but they show it in such a funny way.

5. The Middle.  This show is about a family with three kids, two boys and one girl.  (Sound familiar?)  And while that's about all we have in common with this family, the struggle and hilarity in being a family just carries through every family.  It's a hard working stoic dad, a chatty mom that tries to bring her family together but doesn't always do it in the right way, a teenage son that's too cool for everyone, a sweet teenage daughter who strives to be something, anything, and an awkward younger son who has a lot of quirks.  I enjoy the dynamics and how REAL family life is portrayed on this show.  

Sunday, June 21, 2015

Sunday Bests: Jun 21, 2015

Hi friends!  I'm going to try to bring back my Sunday Bests series with just a few favorites from each week.  I'm finding it harder and harder to blog since I don't really make much of anything anymore.  I hardly make cards, I have a really hard time finishing PL layouts (mostly b/c I keep saying "oh, I'm gonna come back and embellish more" or "when I get the time, I'm gonna watercolor this one."), and I just feel like I don't have many original things to say to you all.  I miss blogging.  I miss crafting.  And someday maybe I can be a crafty blogger again.

Onto my favorites for the week:

1. Off the Vine Pickles by Claussen.  Oh my gosh, these are SO good!  Maybe you can tell because there's only one pickle left in the jar.  The claim on this jar is that it's 8 days from the vine into the jar.    I don't know if that's why it tastes so good but it does!  I love having a pickle as a side with a sandwich and these are my new faves!  These are in the refrigerated section of the grocery store.

2.  Vasseur Beauty on YouTube.  I adore Brittany!  I don't remember how I found her channel.  I think I was searching for makeup organization.  But I LOVE her DIYs, her recipes, and that she has a fun sense of humor.  She's a pretty girl that's really well educated on beauty and skin care but she doesn't take herself too seriously.  You HAVE to watch until the very end of each video since there's a little Easter Egg type end scene and it's usually super funny!

3.  Parenthood on Netflix.  I am LATE to the party!  I know that this show is now over but all the seasons are on Netflix and I've been binge watching while I'm sick on bedrest.  I love the characters and how subtle the acting is!  I also love that it is SO so real!  I can't go more than 2 episodes without being brought to tears but I LOVE the Braverman Family and I wish this show was still on!

That's it for this week!  What have you been loving?  Leave me a comment below, I'd love to check out your favorites too!  

Monday, June 8, 2015

Guest Blogger: Allie Gleason

Hi friends!  I was recently contacted by a wonderful teenage girl named Allie who came across my blog and wanted to share some links about Autism with me.  She asked me to help her help others with Autism and who am I to say no?  Of course I wanted to help her.  Here is a guest post she so awesomely wrote specifically to share with my readers.  Please take the time to read informative post and leave her a comment here! 

Common Misconceptions about Teens with Asperger Syndrome

As I’ve gotten older, I’ve grown more confident in my ability to speak out about what children and teens with Asperger Syndrome experience. And in trying to educate my classmates and even some adults about Asperger Syndrome, I’ve found that there are many misconceptions about it. Below I’ve addressed a few of the misconceptions that I think are the most damaging for young people with Asperger Syndrome.

We are unable to interact well with others. Many people think that people with Asperger Syndrome or autism can’t have a conversation with someone else or that we have poor social skills. But that isn’t always the case. I used to be very anxious in social situations where I had to be around a lot of people. However, swimming helped change all that for me. Swimming gave me an outlet for my anxiety and a common ground with the peers on my swim team. In fact, swimming can have many positive effects for kids with autism and Asperger Syndrome. To learn more about how being in the water helps people with autism, check out this great guide on the benefits of aquatic therapy.

We like being alone. This misconception can be really painful for those of us growing up with Asperger Syndrome. As this article from notes, often it isn’t that people with autism like being alone, it’s simply that they do better in smaller social situations. Being in a situation with a lot of people can be overwhelming for me, but like the child described in the article, I do well in one-on-one social interactions. When I was younger, many kids simply didn’t want to take the time to get to know me or didn’t want to be seen talking to me on their own. It was very difficult for me to make friends and eventually, I think people began to think that I just liked being by myself. But that wasn’t the case at all.

We don’t have emotions. I think this misconception is connected to the one above. People assume people with Asperger Syndrome don’t have emotions and think that’s why they’re okay being alone. But as notes, we absolutely do experience and feel emotions. We simply might not be as successful as others at expressing those emotions.

We will grow out of our Asperger Syndrome. Many people think that Asperger Syndrome and autism are childhood disorders. But in its article on myths about Asperger Syndrome, explains that it is a lifelong disorder. In my experience and as I get older, I find that this myth contributes to another misconception, which is that people with Asperger Syndrome are acting outside what is perceived as “normal” on purpose. Again, that simply isn’t the case. And in fact, I think you’ll find that many people with Asperger Syndrome and autism, including myself, have actually worked really hard to curb the aspects of our conditions that put us on the outside. 

The best way to end these misconceptions is to educate others about them. I strongly encourage other teens with Asperger Syndrome and their parents or caregivers to spread the word about what having AS really means. 

# # #

Allie Gleason, a teen with Asperger's Syndrome, is part high school student, part volunteer-intern-extraordinaire at EducatorLabs, part cheerleader for all those affected by ASD. Writing has become a huge outlet for her; she appreciates you taking the time to read her article!

Monday, May 25, 2015

Geek Dad Gift Guide

Hi friends!  I hope you are doing well!  Long time no talk!  Honestly, I have no idea what to blog about now that I'm not crafting everyday anymore.  Do you have ideas?  I'd love to hear them!  You can email me or leave me a comment below.

Today, I'm sharing a gift guide for gals like me who have a Geeky Dad (or really any guy) in their life that they need to buy for.  I find it challenging to buy cool gifts for my husband (who's birthday AND Father's Day are in June) and I thought maybe other people might have this challenge too.  I went combing through Amazon for Geeky but still chic items that would be cool gifts.

1.  Build-On Brick Mug - Legos and coffee/tea at the same time?  Awesome, right?
2.  Magic Jellyfish - It's like a pet but not at all a pet.
3.  Starwars Light Switch Decals - Hilarious without being too gaudy.
4.  Tungsten Triforce Ring - I'm in love with this ring!  It's kind of secretly geeky.
5.  Game of Thrones Board Game - Why wait for the TV series when you can try to claim the Iron Throne for yourself?
6.  Binary Clock - Tell time in binary.  Plus, it's cool to look at!

I hope this is helpful to someone out there.  Do you have fun new ideas on what to give your geeky guy or girl?  Please leave a comment below!  I'd love to get some ideas from you!  

Monday, April 27, 2015

Avery's Pink and Purple Birthday Party

Hi friends!  I hope you are well!  We are ok.  A couple of the kids seem to have a little cold.  Fingers crossed that it doesn't get worse than that.

Today, I'm sharing some pictures from Avery's birthday party.  Sigh...  I'm late in sharing the pictures.  I was late in having the party.  I guess the theme should have just been LATE.  ;)  Originally, we were going to do a Princess Tea Party themed party but we were so sick in late December and almost all of January.  We decided to throw together a little party for Avery and this is what I came up with.  I spent almost nothing on this party but we were all happy with it.

I always have this line and hook thing (I don't know what it's called) from Ikea up for the kids's art.  I decided to change out all the kid art with some pictures of Avery, doilies, and some Whisker Graphics Bitty Bags.  

I love this little area!  I framed a doily that I wrote on.  The writing says "Thanks for coming to celebrate our Cutie!"  We gave away Cutie oranges as party favors because I'm kind of done buying tiny cheap toys that will get thrown in the trash.  I added a jar with burlap and lace, a candle, and a framed pic of Avery.  I thought this was so cute!

I found this little chest in front of a neighbor's house one day with a bunch of stuff and a sign that said "free."  Woot woot!  I added a bunch of dress up items for the little girls to play with.  There was jewelry from the Dollar Tree, headbands, tutus, hats, etc...

Here's the gift table and back door decorated.  We also hung some balloons that I blew up from the light fixture.  So easy, so cheap!

Here's some of the food I made for the party.  Let me know if you want any recipes!

Avery LOVES balloons and lollipops so I made these little balloon bouquet cupcakes for her.  I used the cheap thin ribbon from Michael's to tie a bow around the center lollipop.  

I made dipped marshmallows in pink and purple.  I put them in a jar with some sprinkles at the bottom.  These were a HUGE hit and they are SO much easier than cake pops!

I made some colored popcorn for the party as well.  This is SO easy and everyone loves it.  Let me know if you want a recipe post!

I hope you enjoyed a look into Avery's 2nd birthday!  Have a great day, friends!  

Wednesday, April 15, 2015

Autism Charm Winners

Hi friends!  I hope you are doing well!  We are ok.  I am suffering from allergies as the wind has really picked up this week.  Gah!  But it's supposed to be hot this weekend so hopefully my allergies will let up.

Here are the winners for the Autism Awareness Charm that I gave away in my Light It Up Blue for Autism Blog Hop post.  

Beautiful card!!! Adore glitter puzzle pieces. Thanks for sharing your story.

Lovely card, the sparkle is the perfect touch.

Awesome card for the hop! Love your sparkly puzzle pieces! The charm you are giving away is beautiful - thank you for sponsoring the hop!

Please email me using the "email me" link on the right side of my blog under my picture and I will mail those out to you!  
Also, my Autism Awareness Fundraiser is still going!  I'm donating 10% of my commission for all sales made in April from my Just Jewelry by Ashley site.  I'm also donating 100% of my commission from all Autism Awareness items purchased in the month of April.  If you're looking for some jewelry for Mother's Day or prom or any other occasion, now is a great time to buy!  My goal is to donate $250.  
Have a great day, friends!

Monday, April 13, 2015

Minnie Mouse Baby Sprinkle

Hi friends!  I hope you are doing well!  I just got off two really busy weeks.  First, we went on vacation then I came back and helped with a baby "sprinkle" for my bestie.  It's been keeping me super busy!

Today, I wanted to share some pictures from the party with you.  I didn't get a chance to do as much as I would like but it still turned out super cute!

Here are the Minnie Mouse cupcakes I made.  I got the cupcake liners at Michael's and the bows at Target.  I saw a Mickey Mouse like this on Pinterest and adapted the idea.

This is the basket of party favors that I made.  I just put some ribbon on a basket.

Here are the party favors.  I made baby rattles using dipped marshmallows and regular mini marshmallows.  I used a printable from The Lovebug Blog for the Minnie bows and hubby put text on them in Photoshop for me.  I used tiny favor bags and a tiny attacher.

I made up a special recipe for the party, Minnie's Bows and Dots pasta salad.  It's bow tie pasta, tomatoes, black olives, and string cheese.  I dressed it with a balsamic vinaigrette.

I made bows similar to the ones I saw on The Lovebug Blog.

 I made these garlands from punched card stock and Divine Twine.
 My friend Karen made this GORGEOUS beverage bar.  Aren't her Minnie Mouse decorations SO cute??  She even decorated the red solo cups with little white dot stickers to make them look like Minnie's dress.  She also made the hanging Minnie Mouse heads on the ribbons that you see on the other pictures.

Hope you enjoyed a look into this special party!  Have a great day, friends!  

Tuesday, April 7, 2015

Autism Awareness Fundraiser

Hi friends!  I hope that you're doing well!  We are pretty good!  We had a great vacation/honeymoon in Mexico and we are back to enjoy the rain here at home.  It's really nice because being in Mexico reminded me that I'm not quite ready for summer yet!

I want to thank each and every person who took the time to read my Autism Awareness Blog Hop Post down below!  It was awesome to read the comment and some of them brought me to tears.  I'm still slowly going through all the awesome projects and leaving comments.

Today, I'm inviting you all to my Autism Awareness Just Jewelry Fundraiser.  If you click on the link, it will take you to a Facebook event with all the details.  To sum it up, I will be donating 10% of ALL my commissions in April to Autism Speaks.  If you purchase any of the Autism Awareness pieces, I will donate 100% of my commission on top of the 10% that Just Jewelry donates from each item.  All you have to do is order from my Just Jewelry by Ashley website and get the item shipped directly to your home, USA only sorry!

The items pictured above are the ones I will donate 100% of my commission from.  I'll give you the links real quick: BRACELET, CHARM, EARRINGS.

If you'd like to have a Just Jewelry fundraiser, please feel free to contact me and we can work something out.  I'd love to help you!  Have a wonderful day, friends!

Thursday, April 2, 2015

Light It Up Blue for Autism Awareness Blog Hop

***There's a GIVEAWAY at the end of this post!***

Hi friends!  I hope you are well!  By the time this post goes live, I will hopefully be on a cruise to Mexico!  YAY!  Let's hope this publishes!  

Today's post is very near and dear to my heart.  My friends Veronica and Tenia have teamed up to create an amazing event for World Autism Awareness Day.  Today is the day we LIGHT IT UP BLUE!  I invite you to wear some blue today in support of Autism Awareness.  The blog hop is hosted on Veronica's post HERE.  Please go to her blog and check out all the links, become more aware, and enter to win in the HUGE amounts of AMAZING prizes!  I'm offering up a prize for the hop and TONS of great companies are offering up all sorts of amazing things!

April is Autism Awareness month.  I will be donating 10% of my Just Jewelry by Ashley commission to Autism Speaks for the entire month of April.  I will also donate 100% of the commission I make from any of the Autism Awareness jewelry on my Just Jewelry site, the BRACELET, EARRINGS, or CHARM.

My backstory:
Before I had Brady, I was a therapist for children with Autism.  I mostly worked with kids 5 and under.  I've always loved working with children.  I started babysitting from a young age.  I was at one point nanny and a preschool teacher.  But I found my real passion in working with children on the Autism spectrum.  I loved teaching them life skills, academics, social skills, and getting to be there for them!  I loved being able to make a positive difference in the lives of these children that held such a special place in my heart!  These kids are so special.  Life is hard when you cannot think, function, or process like other people.  Once you are able to understand that their behaviors come from an inability to cope, you can see people with Autism in such a different light.

To do this, society must become more aware.  I'm so proud of Veronica and Tenia for putting together this blog hop to spread awareness!  I'm so happy for the over 200 bloggers and crafters who are joining together to light the blogging world up blue!  Here's my card for today.  I might have maybe borrowed (ahem stole) some puzzle pieces from the kids to make this card.  I colored them with Copics then added TONS of Stickles.  The paper is from Echo Park and I used several different kinds of tiny alpha stickers to make the sentiment.

Thank you so much for taking the time to read this post!  Today, I'd like to giveaway 3 of Just Jewelry Autism Awareness Charms to 3 people who leave comments!  Just tell me how Autism has touched your life or how you heard about this hop.  Giveaway will end Friday April 10 at 11:59pm.  Winners will be announced on my blog and will need to contact me to claim their prize.
Have a great day, friends!  Don't forget to go to Veronica's Post and check out all the fabulous creations and enter for the prizes!

Tuesday, March 24, 2015

Love for Lila Fundraiser

Hi friends!  I hope you are doing well.  We are doing ok.  Hubby and I are going on our very first "real" trip for our 10th anniversary this weekend.  I am nervous and excited!

Today, I'd like to tell you about a fundraiser I'm having.  My sweet friend, Julie Masse, and her family have been on a long journey to adopt a child from China.  I've known Julie for YEARS through stamping and she's a wonderfully kind person!  In March of last year, Julie announced that she wanted to adopt a child from China.  She started an Adoption Blog.  I've been following her story for a year.  I've always wanted to adopt a child from China but I don't think it's financially possible for our family.  I guess I'm living vicariously through Julie.  I'm inspired by all the fundraisers she's done to bring her daughter home.  The picture above is Lila, the little girl the Masse family has been matched with.  They are in their last stages of raising money so they can go to China and bring her to her forever home.  I really wanted to help her and her family in any way I could.

I have donated a little, I've bought from her fundraisers, and I really wanted to do more so I decided to have a fundraiser with my Just Jewelry to see if I could donate more money.  You can view the Love for Lila Just Jewelry Fundraiser event on Facebook.  I am donating 100% of my profits from the event to the Masse Family.  It's simple.  If you buy ANYTHING from my Just Jewelry by Ashley website, I will donate my commission to the Masse's adoption fund.  The fundraiser ends on March 31.

If you'd like to donate directly to the Masse Adoption, you can do so on their YouCaring Page.  Thanks for taking the time to read this!