Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Extending my vacation...

Hello all! I hope you had a fantastic holiday!! We over at the Johnson family had a wonderful Christmas. It's amazing how much more fun it is with a little one in the house. And don't get me wrong, I loved Christmas before. But now? Even better. At 13.5 months Owen still didn't get the whole present thing...unwrapping, etc....but he sure did enjoy the toys once they were open! So now we are in rotation mode....hide a few toys, bring them out every few days...and voila, they are all new again. Genius.

I must admit, I'm still totally in vacation mode. My original plan for this week was to tackle the never ending and all encompassing to-do list. You know, boring things like clean out my closet, organize my office and clean the tile in the kitchen. Thrilling right? But then there are the fun things...like finally finish Owen's baby album! That's the top of my list. AND there is the Pretty Smitten to-do list. I have so many new products that I would love to add to my shop. Some are in more of the design phase still, but some are almost there....

Okay, so why am I blabbing about all of this? Well folks, I don't think I'll be opening my shop again until January 11th. I know, I know....that seems like forever from now! But, I promise when I do open there will be a few new and exciting things. I'm not promising how many (remember that baby album that has to be done)...but at least a couple! And I'll feel much better about starting the New Year of Pretty Smitten if I can just cross a few things of my list.

Now if any of you were dying to order something on January 3rd (come on, someone, right??) just email me or convo me and I'll squeeze in your order. I don't want to let anyone down!

Enough babbling. On to the list. And for now, enjoy this photo of Owen on Christmas. He's in his new wagon and pretty happy about it. Just put a bow on his head, his little smile was my present this year!

Saturday, December 19, 2009

Happy Holidays!!

I am officially on holiday break! My shop closed yesterday and all of my orders have been shipped. Yippeee! We celebrated by taking a day trip to Tahoe. We checked out the new Ritz Carlton at Northstar, had some lunch and did a little sledding. Owen loved the snow and squealed with delight going on the sled. Fun Fun day!! Now it's off to sit by the fire and cozy up with my husband. Have a wonderful Christmas everyone and talk to you on January 3rd!!

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Looking for a Holiday craft project?

How cute are these cupcake ornaments?? The ever talented Amanda over at Bake It Pretty posted a 'how-to' for these cupcake ornaments on her blog last week. Love them! They'd make a great Holiday project one afternoon....fun to hang on your tree, or group a few together for a fun display.

So from the Bake It Pretty blog, here are the directions to make your very own...

You'll need:
Styrofoam Balls (2.5" size for regular cupcakes, 1.5" for mini cupcakes)
Heavy-Duty foil cupcake liners (Standard 2" size, Miniature Size)
Artificial snowflakes
Artificial floral berry sprigs (in assorted sizes)
Bakers twine or ribbon (optional)
Wooden skewers
White craft glue
foam or paint brush
Hot glue

STEP 1: Stick one Styrofoam ball onto a wooden skewer for easy handling. Use a foam brush to paint the upper 2/3 of the ball with a medium coat of white craft glue.

STEP 2: Roll the ball into the faux snow flakes, gently pressing and sprinkling the flakes to cover the ball nicely. It should look like a frosty, snowball. (This is a great step to involve the kids with!)

STEP 3: Place the stick and ball into a mug or a piece of foam, if you have one, and allow to dry completely. I know, I hate waiting for things to dry! But if you try to glue them into the foil liners now, the sides just won’t stick. Trust me. I tried.

STEP 4: When your cupcakes tops are dry, remove the wooden skewers and you are ready to glue them into their foil baking liners. Hot glue works best, but please be careful not to burn your fingers! Run a circle of glue around the top inside of the liner and place your cupcake ball inside, frosty side up. Cup your hands and press gently around the edges to glue the liner on snugly. Do not push the ball down too far or the bottom will curve and your cupcake will not sit flat, (this isn’t really a big deal if you’re planning on hanging them.) Due to the hot-glue factor, this step is best left to big-kids and adults.

STEP 6: Choose the perfect “cherry” for your cupcake. Cut one floral berry from the bunch, leaving about 1″ or less of wire stem. Add a small dot of hot glue to the top center of your cupcake. If you are planning to hang your ornament, set a small loop of ribbon or twine into the glue first, then press your cherry firmly on top. You can push the wire right into the Styrofoam ball, or flip it around to make a cherry “stem.” Both styles are very cute!

And that's it! So cute and easy, right? Now she does say 'use heavy duty foil liners' but I'm thinking they would be so cute with some of her other fun cupcake liners. Maybe it's the hot glue, goops up on the thiner liners?? Anyway, I think I'd at least give other liners a shot. My favorites for Christmas ornaments are shown below, all can be found on the Bake It Pretty website too. And while we're at it...these little cupcake cuties could be used for all kinds of occasions. I'm thinking they'd be a whimsical decoration at baby showers (think pink/blue polka dots and striped liners)...weddings (all white?)...and maybe on the cherry place a name card too, voila cupcake placecard holders? Just brainstorming folks, haven't tried this...but if I do I'll let you know how they turn out!


Monday, December 14, 2009

Pretty Smitten featured on Style at Home!

Yiippee! Pretty Smitten has been featured on the website of Canada's largest decorating magazine, Style at Home. The article is titled '8 Holiday Gift Wrap Accessories' and both Pretty Smitten Holiday tags and stickers have been featured! The editor contacted me a couple months ago...she found my shop on Etsy and loved my products. I really really wanted to shout it to the world then, but I bit my tongue and waited until it was actually posted. Yay! What a fantastic way to start the week. Happy Monday everyone!

Thursday, December 3, 2009

Giveaway results...

I think I can officially say that this giveaway was a flop! Only 1 comment, soooo sad. But lets face it, I didn't promote this one AT ALL. Plus I wasn't writing any new posts, so why would people check back?? And I'm a very bad blogger and just announcing it now....

SUSAN...you are the winner! Please contact me and we will work on your design for your Holiday Cards and Stickers!!

And we're already at 222 sales, so well on our way to the 250 sales giveaway! Keep checking back!

We're back!

Hello all! Hope everyone had a fantastic Thanksgiving! We arrived home late Tuesday night from Maryland. It was a wonderful holiday filled with lots of family time. My brother and sister inlaw have 3 boys and Owen was thrilled to play with his cousins. They made him laugh and he watched wide eyed everything they did, it was too cute for words. And of course Grandma and Grandpa spoiled him the whole time!

And can I just say, I love Maryland! We've been there to visit many times...but I think I saw it with new eyes. What did I see? ROOM TO PLAY! The boys could run, play football, ride bikes and bigwheels...all in their driveway and yard. And since I'm pretty sure we're in for 3 boys too (the Johnson's have BOYS!!!) I would love to have that space! I love our house in California, and we actually have a decent sized backyard for California standards...but lets face it, it's just not the same! But it is nice to be home. I do love home. I love my own bed and Owen is happy to be back in his own crib.

Yesterday I spent doing laundry...and more laundry....and unpacking, and organizing, and cleaning.....how does a house need cleaning when we've been gone for over a week? Well who knows, but it does. But I'm back and Pretty Smitten is back, and we're ready for the Christmas season!! Remember, my shop will be closed from December 18 - January 3rd so that I can enjoy the holiday with my family. So place your orders early!

Happy Thursday everyone.

Friday, November 20, 2009

It's our biggest giveaway yet!! We are so excited to celebrate our 200 sales and announce this next giveaway. We're leaving for our Thanksgiving vacation in the morning and feeling very much in the Holiday spirit around here. So....this time up for grabs is a set of our Holiday Cards with room for a photo and our very popular Holiday gift stickers! To enter, all you have to do is leave a comment saying your favorite thing about the Holiday season. Please either leave your email address or be sure to check back...the winner will be announced on December 2nd when I return from my vacation!! Thanks so much to all of you for making my shop a success, and good luck!!

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Happy (belated) Birthday Sesame Street!

I just found out that Sesame Street and Owen have the same birthday!! Sesame Street just celebrated their 40th birthday on November 10th, so they are 39 years older then my little guy. My mom always tells me how that 1/2 hour in the day was the one time she could count on to get a few things done! That's because I grew up when there was no DVR, not even a VCR at first, and a small fraction of the TV channels that there are today! So Happy Birthday Sesame Street...sorry it's a week late! But we love you at the Johnson house, past and present

Here are a few ways it was celebrated...

My favorite Bakerella cake pops....in Sesame Street characters. SO SO cute.
Love these.

A visit from Michelle Obama

You'd think I would have seen this one, aren't I on Google every day?? Well, I didn't. But I think it's adorable! And there were many others too, see them all here. Big Bird is my favorite though!

Happy Birthday Sesame Street and Happy Thursday everyone! Don't forget to check back tomorrow for our giveaway to celebrate 200 sales!

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

200 Sales!

Yiippeeee! I have made it to 200 Etsy sales! Every time I hit a 50 sale mark, I feel so proud of my little shop. The best part by far is corresponding with all of my customers. I love helping to design their stationary products and party items. And of course I love to hear their delight upon receiving them! So a BIG THANK YOU to all of my customers. And in keeping with tradition I will be offering a giveaway to celebrate my 200 sales. Check back this Friday to see what is up for grabs this time!

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

DIY with Ikea

Reading one of my favorite blogs, Ohdeedoh, this morning and I came across this fantastic DIY bench originally from Mondo Cherry. The best part? It's made from two Ikea night stands! They are put together and topped with a bench cushion and pillows. I'm in love with this idea...thinking it would look great in our playroom or maybe even Owen's room. And although this could be made with various night stands, colors, etc...I think their color combo is fantastic! Those red striped pillows are so cute and that little blue owl perched on top is adorable. Would fit right in with my son's blue and red room....can we tell I love that color scheme?

Okay I'm off, my mom is on her way over to spend some quality time with Owen while I run some much needed errands. Getting ready for our big holiday adventure to Maryland!

Happy Tuesday all!

Sunday, November 15, 2009

Holiday Schedule

Hello all! It's that time...the Holiday season is upon us! We are heading to Maryland on Saturday to celebrate Thanksgiving with my husband's parents. Hooooray! A week of relaxing, eating, and watching Owen explore Grandma's house. Can't get any better then that. So where does that leave my shop? I'm going to keep it open! All orders placed prior to Wednesday, November 18th will be shipped THIS WEEK. All orders placed between November 18th - December 1st will be shipped AT THE EARLIEST on December 4th. I'll be able to correspond via email while in Maryland so proofs, etc can be done while I'm gone.

As for my Christmas schedule...the shop will be closed from December 18th - January 3rd so that I can enjoy Christmas with my family. So place your orders early! And remember, all items can be shipped as gifts directly to recipients. Holiday shopping made easy!

Thanks everyone and Happy Holidays!

Monday, November 9, 2009

Happy Birthday Owen!!

My beautiful baby boy turns ONE today! At exactly 11:14am 1 year ago, little Owen was born into this world and my life became so much sweeter. Today's post is dedicated to him...I poured over photos of him last night, here are some of my favorites...

The day he was born!

1 month

2 months

3 months

4 months
5 months
6 months
7 months

8 months

9 months

10 months

11 months

The Birthday Boy this morning - happily eating his blueberry pancakes

Happy Birthday to my sweet baby! I love you now and forever.

Holiday Shopping Event

Hi all! Hope you had a great weekend! I am so excited, I've decided to showcase my products at Stockings and Stilettos, a Holiday shopping event in San Francisco hosted by Appel & Frank! It's December 10th from 5-9pm at the Regency Center.

And what exactly is Appel & Frank? They say it best...."Appel & Frank hosts Seasonal Shopping Events that bring together hip, fashion-forward shoppers with stylish, emerging designers. Each fabulous soiree features more then 65 designers offering everything from clothing and jewelry to handbags and more." Their events also have complimentary cocktails and beauty treatments. A perfect girls night out! I have been to one of their events as a shopper when I lived in SF. I had a ton of fun and realized then that I would love to someday showcase my work there. And now I am!! So....lots of preparation to do! They provide the table, but I'm brainstorming on display ideas....thinking cake stands for height, and I have these adorable paper suitcases that will be great to hold note card sets and gift tags. Anyone out there with some craft fair advice? Something I shouldn't forget?

And if you are in San Francisco on December 10th...please stop by! Would love to meet you in person.

Happy Monday!

Photo from last years event - don't you just love the ceilings at the Regency Center?

Friday, November 6, 2009

Happy Friday!

Okay so I haven't been that much better about blogging this week!! I know I know, I said I would be...where do these weeks go? If you've been checking my shop, you can tell I've been scaling back there too. I have only been re-listing items when they sell instead of renewing items daily. Result is, less orders! Which is perfect for this week. Gearing up for my son's 1st birthday next week and I need the extra time. At first I felt bad....I feel the need to 'go go go'...but then I realized, wait this is MY business and I can run it how I want! And this week I chose to take it slow. Probably will next week too. This way I get to create a few orders here and there, and enjoy my little guy's first birthday. Time flies and I want to enjoy every minute! With that in mind, Owen is waiting to play on his new slide....Grandma and Grandpa were in town last weekend so he got a gift a little early. Pics below of him testing it out that first day. Happy Friday everyone, have a great weekend!!

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Pretty Smitten with Felt

Lately I've been loving all things felt!! It's my new favorite thing to search for on Etsy. There are so many talented sellers out there working with felt, but here are some of my favorites....

Alphabet Magnets by MiChiMa - how cute are these?? I definitely want to get these for Christmas for our son. Such a cute alternative to the plastic magnets. I would much rather look at these every time I open the fridge!

Loving all types of felt food - I envision a little mini market for Owen.

Apple and Milk Carton by Etsy seller bugbitesplayfood

Fruit Basket set by Etsy seller PACHOM

Can't forget dessert! Adorable cake set by Etsy seller onenonly88

Flower hair clip by Etsy seller PrettyinPosies - love the layered look and you get to choose the type of clip!

Pacifier clip by Etsy seller cranberriesandcapers. Love this! What a cute baby gift. And check out her shop for lots of other cute pacifier and hair clips.

Felt baby shoes by Etsy seller frannyandjune. Another great gift! These are just too sweet.

Happy felt hunting everyone...and Happy Wednesday!

I'll be better this week....

I have been a terrible blogger! Life has taken over and it's amazing how the days fly by. Did you have a good Halloween? It was our first with Owen and it was so fun to dress him up! We went to our friends house down the street....food, wine, kids in costumes, lots of chatting...tons of fun! And even though Owen isn't old enough to actually trick or treat, we had a great time walking around the neighborhood with the other children.

Daddy and Owen. LOVE.

Ready to head out trick or treating in his stroller....and trying to get the puppy dog hat off!

Okay so this week I promise to be better and you will hear from me more! Happy Monday!