Tuesday, March 20, 2012


Ok....So it has been a month.  I KNOW.  I have been taking a little "break' of sorts.  WHY???  Well here is the rundown...
I have this life...it is a good life, but a little busy now and then.  I also have this blog...it is a good blog, but SOMETIMES I have to choose the life OVER the blog.  Have you ever heard that you have to choose better things over good things.  WELL this is that instance.  I love blogging!!  Why (I know my husband would like to know)??  Well I love to make things, I love to talk to/meet people, I like to share ideas, and I LOVE to write.  If Icould take a LIFE break, I would write a book.  BUT since my life is NOT going anywhere anytime soon, I have to take a blog break instead.  I test drove this BREAK idea over the last month and realized I only missed blogging a little bit.  PLUS...I still have my personal family blog to keep my ideas flowing. I will still be crafting and reading and my kids will still be super cute, so I will still be posting about it on my personal blog.  AND who knows...maybe in a month I will change my mind. I am sure I will update this blog once in a while if I have a tutorial to share or something AMAZING to write about.  But I am not going to worry about keeping it up to date.  BUMMER, but I know there are OTHER things that need my attention right now.  Thanks for all of your wonderful comments and emails over the last few years.  Happy Crafting!!!  Jessica

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

No excuse!!!

 SOOOO, this week was a big fat FAIL.  I lost ZERO pounds.  Since I didn't weigh in last week, that means TWO WEEKS with no loss.  I would make excuses, but I know the reasons.  I am not on a plateau...I am not losing inches....I am eating healthy for a few days and THEN.....
Clearly not helpful.  NO MORE CHEATING!!!!  No more bites, tastes, nibbles, or sips.  No more DAYS OFF.  This week I am getting back into gear.  
SOOO this was me tonight at ten o'clock alone in the grocery store buying healthy food.  

 And this is going to be me next week!!!
 Wish me luck!!!

Thursday, February 9, 2012

Books of 2011

SOOOO I just realized that I have a HALF COMPLETED list of books from 2011 on my sidebar....what a loser I am sometimes.  I always have great intentions, but then life happens and the kids eat cat poop, or break my glasses in half, or dump nutella all over my floor, or unroll a roll of toilet paper and then try to flush it down the toilet.  AND THEN I forget all about my little blog and keeping it up to date.  SOOO although it is OVER a month behind schedule (and mostly just for me), here is the list of books I read in 2011.  I must start out by saying that last year I read 39 books and this year only 25....BUMMER!!!  I guess having kid # 2 took up a little bit of my spare time:) 
* =  my favorites!!

1. The Amish Midwife--Mindy Starns Clark and Leslie Gould
2.  The Wildflower Bride--Mary Connealy
*3.  Heartless--Anne Elisabeth Stengl
4.  Slay It With Flowers---Kate Collins
5.  The Linen Queen--Patricia Falvey
6.  Journey To Riverbend---Henry McLaughlin
*7.  Wench---Dolen Perkins-Valdez
8.  Real Simple Solutions---Real Simple Magazine
9. 365 Activities You And Your Toddler Will Love--Nancy Wilson Hall
10.  Baby Love--Norah O'Donnell
11.  The One Minute Cleaner--Donna Smallin
**12.  A Distant Melody---Sarah Sundin
**13.  A Memory Between Us---Sarah Sundin
14.  Something Borrowed--Emily Giffin
*15. Nowhere Carolina--Tamara Leigh
16.  The Girl In The Gatehouse--Julia Klassen
**17. The Forgotten Garden---Kate Morton
18.  Rachel's Secret---BJ Hoff
19.  Where Grace Abides---BJ Hoff
20.  Beside Still Waters---Tricial Goyer
21.  Love Finds You in Pedleton Oregon---Melody Carlson
*22.  The Shape of Mercy--Susan Meissner
**23.  The Tea Rose--Jennifer Donnelly
**24.  The Winter Rose--Jennifer Donnelly
**25.  The Winter Sea---Susan Kearsley

A book every 2 weeks isn't bad, but to keep myself sane, I am going to aim for 40 in 2012:)

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

A little of this and a little of THAT!!!

SOOO first things first....I took the week off from weighing in.  I had a CRAFTING RETREAT this weekend and so I decided to enjoy myself rather than counting calories.  I will weigh in again next week and see what harm I did my eating catered food and LOTS of candy:)  Who knows...maybe the dozen chocolate chip cookies I ate last night will ACTUALLY eat the fat cells...I am not a scientist, but it could happen!!!

Speaking of my retreat...I am already looking forward to next year.  I had  a BLAST!!!  I was hoping to get a quilt top done, but only finished 2/3 or the blocks.  I did get a sideache from laughing and a headache from staying up until 2 in the morning.  So  I guess I was a little productive:)  I also used my sewing machine...which was a big step since I have been a NON sewer for WAY too long.  I cannot remember the last quilt I worked on (sad I know), but I DO know that I got the fire started again and I will NOT be taking a long break again for a WHILE!!! 
ANDDDD last but not least...the first completed book of the year!!! 
The Wild Rose by Jennifer Donnelly.  This is the 3rd book in her ROSE series.  I FLEW throught the first 2, but this one took me MUCH longer to get in to.  Her writing was as good, but I was not LOVING the characters.  They ALL had a bad side, so I had a hard time choosing who I would root for.  I didn't even know WHO I wanted to end up staying together in the end...I actually hoped for a few of them to die so that I would not have to hear about all of their troubles any more.  BUT all in all despite my disgust with the character's choices, I would give a thumbs up. 
This book was about Seamie...the last brother in the Finnegan family.  He made an appearance in book 2 where he climbs Kilimanjaro with the girl he loves(Willa) and then she falls and destroys her leg, which later has to be amputated.  She blames him for losing her leg and leaves him in Africa.  THIS book picks up when he returns to London and SHE is at Mt. Everest. He is moving on with his life (and his pregnant wife) when Willa returns to London for her father's funeral.  Everything goes down hill at that point for EVERYONE.  Everyone is telling lies.  Everyone is sneaking around.  EVERYONE drove me nuts!!!  PLUS WWI is about to break out and there are spies and mobsters running around making trouble.  If you have read the Tea Rose and The Winter Rose, you should for sure pick up where you left off and read the conclusion of the story.  It is nice to know what has happened to ALL of the other characters that we have gotten to know in the other books.  Now it is time to MOVE ON and find a new book to leave on my nighstand for 2 months:) 

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Weigh in Wednesday

SOOOO I had a bit of a FAIL week this week.  Somwhere along the way I ate at McDonalds, ice-cream was involved in one of my days, a high school basketball game with candy and popcorn made an appearance...oh wait that was all SATURDAY!!!  UGHHH.  Then like always I felt like I had already screwed up so I might as well give up for the week.  I KNOW I KNOW!!!  STUPID!!!  BUT all in all it turned out ok.  I LOST 1 pound.  WOHOO!!!  Not as great as last week, but better than gaining TWO right???  I LOVED the comments, emails, messages, and phone calls I got this week.  TONS of support THANKS!!  I also loved hearing everyone's advice and feedback, so KEEP IT COMING.  It really does help to know that I AM NOT THE ONLY ONE.  Which is why I took the advice of TWO OF YOU LOVELY GALS and started using MYFITNESSPAL again. 
I have used it on and off before, but never with friends.  SOOO right now I only have one friend.  If you wanna be my weight loss buddy (hahaha) just shoot me an email!!!  I also agreed somewhere in my crazed ice-cream eating madness to do a 5K (note I said do and not run---no guarantees!!!). 

I had a few new snack finds this week.  MY FAVORITE...

Sweet Chili Quakes mini rice cakes.  OH MY GOODNESS.  They are like really good healthy(er) Doritos.  I am in love with these right now. LOVE!!
Not quite as much love, but still a pretty good crush going on the white cheddar rice cakes.  They are fine plain, but REALLY good with avacado smushed on them...YUM!! I mean what isn't good with some smushed avacado????
I am also loving SWISS MISS DIET cocoa.  I mean 25 calories....how can you not love that???  It works great when I am down to the end of my calories, but do not want to go to bed yet....LATE NIGHT CHOCOLATE.  Just do not drink the regular stuff EVER AGAIN and you will not remember what you are missing :)

And I tried a new workout---since I had done Jillian's all of ONE darn time (I suck), I decided to try Bob.  The Biggest Loser Power Walk video.  I REALLY like working out with the chubby Biggest Loser people more than the SKINNY TONED gals in the regular videos.  I feel like I am the top of the class..haha!!!  Plus it is walking, but with some KICK.  I like that you walk a mile, get sweaty, and can carry around a toddler while you do it.  That is kind of the barometer at my house right now...can my howler monkey child cling to my neck while I do it???? SUCCESS!! 
How did you all do???  This weeks goal....stop eating so MUCH of all my healthy snacks...Because a bag of rice cakes a day is probably NOT a good weight loss tool!!!

Sunday, January 29, 2012

Itty Bitty Bag (sleeping bag tutorial)

Before Christmas (when I still had contact with my sewing machine), I made a little Itty Bitty sleeping bag for Emersyn's BFF (and her Bitty Baby).  Em has been bugging me to make one for her dollies, so I thought I better go back to my pictures and write down what I did so that I do not have to re-invent the wheel when I decide to be a good mommy and make her one. 
SOOO here is a SUPER quick rundown of what I did.  BTW...this would be GREAT for a kid's sleeping bag too, you would just need to increase the length of the fabric to fit your kiddo!!
I started with 3/4 yards of two coordinating fabrics.  I could have made this smaller, but 3/4 is the cuts that I had, so I just went simple and left it.  I also used selvage to selvage and didn't cut, but you could make it much smaller if you wanted to use less fabric.  Next I used spray adhasive to make a quilt sandwich.  SOOO fabric--batting---fabric.  There are lots of online tutorials for that if you are not a quilter. 
 Next, I quilted straight lines about every 8 inches.  I used the lines between the flowers and just eye balled it. SOO do not look closely because it is SUPER crooked.  If you wanted to skip the quilting step, you could buy pre-quilted fabric OR use fleece.  If using fleece you would only need ONE piece because you would not need to use batting and lining.  Honestly, that might be the way to go:)
 After quilting I cut the edges even and serged around all four sides.  Serging is optional, it just keeps the edges looking clean. 
 Next, I took one SHORT end and folded it down and ironed it. 
THEN I folded it over again to make a cute border at the top of the bag. 
 I top stitched along the inner edge.
 AND then again along the outer edge.
 THEN, I folded in one of the LONG edges and top stitched along the inner edge.
 Last, I sewed the velcro along the entire LONG edge that you just sewed down.  DISCLAIMER....I have yet to find a way to sew velcro on and have it look clean and pretty and straight.  SOOO go with it and get it on there.  Remember this is for a doll:)  Repeat along the other side with the other side of the velcro.  After you have both velcro pieces on, close your bag with right sides together and sew the bottom closed.  SOOO you are putting right sides together and sewing along the last SHORT edge of the sleeping bag.  THEN just flip it right side out. and your bag is DONE. 
I used two pieces of bias tape (ribbon would work better) to make straps.  I just sewed BOTH pieces to ONE of the top edges of the bag about 1/4 of the way in from the edge.
ALLL ready for a slumber party!!!
Then you can just fold it up and take it along....just like a BIG GIRL sleeping bag. 
 Trust me...Your baby doll with be SUPER happy to have her own little sleeping bag.  AND YOUR little DOLL will LOVE you for making something cute for her dolly:)

Thursday, January 26, 2012

Weigh in Wednesday....except a little late on THURSDAY!!

OKKK.  So I was SUPER busy yesterday and didn't have time to check in.  I DID have time to weigh in though and the results were good.  I lost 2.5 pounds and couldn't be happier.  This coming up week is busy too, so I am going to stick to the same game plan.  I was only able to work out once...although I don't know if 20 minutes interruped 3 times by crying baby counts as much of a work out.  I DID eat much healthier and I think that is the key for me. 
A few things I tried that I liked:
Chocolate Cruch Rice Cakes!!!  I ALWAYS want some chocolate after the stress of putting my kids to sleep, and these are perfect for me. A little chocolate, but no guilt:)  They are also FAB with a little peanutbutter smeared on.  YUM!!! 
Lemon and Lime water!!  I have a hard time making myself drink enough during the day.  SOOO I added a little lemon or lime to my water and I LOVED it!!!  PLUS it kept my kids from drinking my water all day...SCORE!!
Jillian Micheals 30 Day Shred.  I only did it one day, so I guess that is probably why I liked it:)  But it was quick and the kids could do it along with me.  PLUS I was sore the next day (3 days), so that means it worked (or would if I had done it more times). 

So week one was a success.  Now I just need about 5 more weeks of THE SAME THING!!!  Does anyone else have a success story or tips to share????  Here's to another healthy week....

Saturday, January 21, 2012

What I want--Weekend Report

Once again it is the weekend.  AND once again my kid has failed to sleep.  He DID successfully cry for about 2 hours last night around 2 though, so I got some blurry eyed internet shopping time in.  Here are a few of my favorites this week. 

This argyle quilt pattern from etsy.  It looks fun and easy and PERFECT for a boy.  It is so hard to find cute boy patterns.   Plus I love the fabric choices on the one in the picture....so cute.  I guess before I start buying quilt patterns again I will actually have to START sewing again.  BLAHHH...I am sick of sleepless nights of babies...(ok complaints over). 

Next was another BOY pattern.  I think this Boy's cardigan sweater pattern is so super cute.  I can imagine this in grey or brown for church...LOVE IT!!!  I also love this SHOP on etsy.  I have made a few of the Dear My Kids patterns and they always turn out super cute. 
A took a quick stroll through The Fat Quarter Shop and found this cute fabric line, A Walk In The Woods. I love the VINTAGE feel of this sweet little fabric.  **sidenote** I was reading Little Red Riding Hood to Emersyn the other day from a book we got at the library. When it got to the part where the wolf goes to the Grandma's house, he ate her.  The picture showed the wolf with Granny's legs sticking out.  Emersyn's eyes got ENORMOUS and she looked at me like WHAT???  I just kept reading and then Little Red Riding did the whole...Big eyes...Big nose thing and then the wolf ATE HER TOO!!!  What?? I was like...this is NOT the same story my mommy told me.  Poor Emersyn by then was gettting a little fidgety (understandable).  Then the wood cutter came and KILLED THE WOLF and cut him open with his axe...Seriously people this was a kid's book.  THEN the Granny and Little Red jump out of his tummy and live happily ever after.  Emersyn just looked up at me and said "I don't want to read that book anymore."  YEAH I guess!!!  I doubt she is going to be hopping off the Grandma's anytime soon either....poor girl!!  Ok...sidenote over:)
Last on my list, a group of Pyrex bowls from Etsy.  I have orange and red in my house and REALLY want to add more color to my kitchen.  I will be keeping my eyes open when I got thrifting though because if I spent 90 bucks on bowls my husband would wonder about my sanity. 

Well there you have it.  What do you have YOUR eye on these days???  Does it include CHOCOLATE because I am REALLY having some cravings!!!;)

Thursday, January 19, 2012

A few healthy printable coupons!!!

To help on my QUEST for a healthier new year, I am always searching for YUMMY products that are also HEALTHY!!!  Blogspark has provided me with 2 coupon links to share with my readers, so YOU can also start the year off healthy.  First off Whole Grains.  We all know we need them, but where do we find them???  Well I recently learned that you should look for cereals that list WHOLE GRAINS as the first ingredient (not sugar--bummer).  Helpful Hint---look for the white check mark.  Cereals with the white check have whole grains as the first ingredient...how handy!!!

Blogspark has provided THIS link for a coupon.  $1.75 off of TWO boxes with the white check.  SOO click the link below and start saving!!!

Next up, SMOOTHIES.  I mentioned earlier that I am going to start drinking green smoothies in order to stay healthy and lose weight.  My kids see me drinking smoothies and of course want some too.  They tolerate my SPINACH ones once in a while, but they really love the GOOD KIND, like the YOPLAIT yummy delicious ones.  Blogspark has also provided a link for $1.00 off of Yoplait frozen smoothies.  WE ARE BIG FANS OF THESE.  Just pop it in the blender and YUM!!!!  AND now they have a chocolate banana flavored one.  CANNOT WAIT!!!  SO click below for $1.00 off.  I am going to keep mine for DOUBLERS at Albertsons and hopefully score some super cheap CHOCOLATE flavored ones!!!

SOOO join me and print off some healthy coupons for GOOD healthy snacks!!!!

These coupons have both been provided by BLOGSPARK

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Weight Loss Wednesday!!

SOOOO today was THE day.  The day that I woke up...looked in the mirror....and decided ENOUGH WAS ENOUGH!!!!  I am tired of BEING tired of needing to lose weight.  So today I am going to START OVER!!!  A year ago (minus one month) I looked like this....
WOW!!!  I know!!!  I am that person who gains 75 pounds when they are pregnant.  THE PROBLEM...my babies only weigh 9 pounds (Not 73).  That leaves me a little bit of work.  I have done MOST of the work, but there are 10 darn pounds that just WILL NOT LEAVE and unfortunately there is not another 9 pounder hanging out it there!! 
SOOO I have decided to take it public.  NOTHING has kept me motivated thus far.  It is almost February and I am still eating like it is Christmas Eve.  SOOO I thought....WHAT IF I POST IT FOR ALL TO SEE???  I figure I cannot lie about it if EVERYBODY KNOWS.  SOOO here is the post. I am going to weigh in EVERY Wednesday (regardless of how my week went) and post my result on THIS blog.  Let me clarify... I will post what I lost or gained...not the actual weight.  I DO have SOME pride left!!! 
Here is my plan:
*EAT LESS!!!  I know...mind boggling.
*limit my intake of sugar and bread (I would give it up, but that ALWAYS leads to a HUGE relapse).
*NO food after dinner.  I am a late night person....and with those midnight activities I OFTEN enjoy a little snack.  NO MORE!!!
*Drink more water!!!
*NO FAST FOOD...even if my kids are eating there.
*Make good choices.  FOR EXAMPLE...when I go to restaurants I like to eat like there is no tomorrow and eat the WORST (best) things on the menu.  I am going to try to make good choices EVEN when I am not at home. 
*I am not going to promise to exercise....I would, but MY KID DOES NOT SLEEP (period).  I am not sure why, but I have insomniac children.  Often after putting little E to sleep, I have to GO BACK and put him to sleep every 30-45 minutes until I go to bed.  Then he wakes up and I give up and bring him to my bed (where we BOTH don't sleep).  It is NO BUENO!!!  That is an excuse I know, but when Baby doesn't sleep, it makes it hard to go out to the garage to the treadmill...because then he wakes and I lose momentum and get angry and NEVER DO IT AGAIN!!!  So I WILL TRY TO WORK OUT (fingers crossed). 
*Last but not least....SMOOTHIES.  Before Christmas I was doing well and eating healthy and EVERY morning I was drinking a GREEN SMOOTHIE.  Yucky sounding, but TASTY!!!  Of course I found the recipe on PINTEREST, but I pretty much just add what I want.  It REALLY did make me feel better and help me lose weight...that is BEFORE the Christmas COOKIES arrived:)  SO I am gonna try that again!!!    
Ok...that is it...THE PLAN!!!  If you wanna join me feel free to comment on your success.  I would LOVE to hear of somebody suffering along with me:)  Wish me luck.  GOODBYE 10 POUNDS of YUCK....I WILL NOT MISS YOU!!!

Saturday, January 14, 2012

What I WANT....Weekend Report

Ok... So I have a sick kid.  Which means I have been spending WAY too much time sitting in my rocking chair with cranky pants with nothing to occupy my time by the iPad.  It also means I have been eating chocolate chips straight from the bag and watching WAY TO MANY cartoons.  But I digress...I have found a few items that I have kinda fallen in love with.  OR at least a small crush, so I thought I would share.  FIRST off....

This is an etsy find.  A seriously cute diaper bag that doesn't ACTUALLY look like a diaper bag.  I am loving the chevron fabric, the yellow, the big button AND the fact that it is handmade.  So lovely. 

NEXT...is a killer pair of Spring shoes.  I realize it is still the middle of Winter, but since there is no snow maybe I can pull off wedges.  What do ya think???

What if they were these super cute wedges from MAURICES????  Again with the yellow.  YUM!!!

I am also a little SWOONY for this Desert Rose bracelet from Shabby Apple.  I love the coral color SO MUCH!!!  PLUS it is so big and unique....vintage-ey!!!  PLUS I noticed that Shabby Apple has a coupon code on their site for 20 percent off EVERYTHING.  I LOVE a discount!!!

 Last I found another ETSY love.  These You Are My Sunshine prints.  This is my favorite song for 2 reasons.  1.  This is an adopted family song.  A favorite of my grandparents, cousins, aunts, EVERYONE.  It has even been sung at multiple family funerals.  It makes me think of my sweet Grandma Louise, which INSTANTLY makes me happy.  AND 2.  I sing this song to my kids DAILY.  It puts them to sleep. It makes me happy.  WIN WIN!!! Anyway...it is a personal favorite and I ADORE the way they divided the lyrics up into mulitple prints.  I REALLY want to get myself motivated to make my own printable in boy colors and themes for Ethan's room.  HMMMMM?????
And in my sleep deprived, stir crazy, snot cleaning existence, THAT IS WHAT I WANT THIS WEEKEND!!!

The most important things...games and food:)

Here is another Paparazzi Party post, so feel free to skip now:)  I just wanted to share all of the SUPER FUN we had!!!  First off THE GAME.  I usually dislike party games because they are awkward and I NEVER win.  SOOO I only wanted to have a game if I thought it was fun, easy to understand, and WIN-able.  Here is what I came up with.
It is KINDA like a Christmas Gift Exchange type thing. 
FIRST, I took a brown bag for each person expected at the party.  I added 1 piece of jewelry (the prizes) to 3 of the bags.  Then I added other random items to the rest of the bag.  Q-tips, candies, plastic spoons, sprinkles, pencils, paper clips, you get the idea.  Emersyn even added my extra van keys to one bag...so whatever works!! 
THEN each person gets a bag.  They are not allowed to look in the bag, but they can shake it.  Then when everyone has a bag, they get the chance to switch.  SOOOO if they do not think they have a prize, they can trade with someone else.  If they DO think they have a prize, they can keep it.  BUT someone will probably steal it anyway.  I did it so that everybody switches however many times  and all at once.  Just a big fruit basket of trading.  Clearly you could get more particular with rules.  LIKE go in a circle and trade, etc.  I DID say that if someone wants to trade you MUST give up your bag.  But then you can always trade back later.  ANYWAY..this went on for a few minutes.  Then I did a countdown (with mass last minute trading) and then stopped the switching.
One thing I will do now is ask for those who think they ended up with a prize---then have them look and see what they got.  THEN have everyone else check.  I am sure there would be some surprises. 
This was fun, quick, and even my 3 year old understood.  ALTHOUGH she was THRILLED when she had purple and blue plastic spoons in her bag...so maybe she didn't REALLY understand. 

Moving on to food.  I honestly think that food is THE MOST IMPORTANT part of a party.  BUT it seemed that most people just wanted water and jewelry...who can blame them????

I am so glad I decided to bling up the water.  Super easy 10 minute fix-up, super cute payoff.  I LOVED THEM!!!!

 My NEW favorite party food...chocolate popcorn balls.  SERIOUSLY...these should be called ADULT popcorn balls or something.  They are like balls of crack!!!  I got the recipe from PINTEREST of course.  It is a PAULA DEAN original and BOMB DIGGITY!!!  I called my friend for help, so tecnically SHE made them, but she said it was simple.  I DID eat most of them and I totally recommend.  IN FACT, I am pretty sure I now have scurvy from maintaining a diet of JUST chocolate popcorn balls for over 24 hours.  But YOU'RE RIGHT..that is a personal problem.  OH YEAH....I added pink M&M's and they are really the secret ingredient.  They stayed KINDA melty for a while and it REALLY added the perfect gooey chocolatey touch....YUM!!!
 NEXT, chocolate fruit dip.  Clearly I have a problem ladies...but chocolate is just soooo good!!!  This is the EASIEST dip ever.  Just 1 cup of GREEK YOGURT and 1/2 cup of NUTELLA.  SOOO GOOD!!!  AND it lasts in the fridge.  SOOO if you come down with a case of scurvy and need to eat some fruit...your chocolate dip will be right there for your healthy eating needs:) 

Have a great weekend YA'll and SERIOUSLY go and make the popcorn balls.  Your fat jeans in the back of the closet will thank you....

Friday, January 13, 2012

My New Venture

 I recently decided to start a new chapter in my life.  BECAUSE it just wasn't hectic enough...haha!!!  I was in search of a NIGHT OUT idea and some how stumbled upon Paparazzi Accessories.  One thing led to another and within about a day I had decided to become a consultant.  It has been a fun little journey so far.  I have built displays, planned a party, fallen in love with jewelry even more than I was before, AND made multiple solo trips to Home Depot (pretty impressive I know).  AND I have been having a blast.  SOOOO this post is just a little bit about what I have been up to lately....
 My first stop on this adventure was at Value Village.  I LOVE THAT PLACE.  I found tons of cute stuff to use for my displays.  Only half of it has ACTUALLY gotten put to use yet, but when my spray painting finger stops being numb....watch out!!!  OK.  My Displays.  I got the idea from HERE and they worked great!!!  I decided to paint two black and one silver....the black jewelry didn't REALLY show up as good on the black board.
 Meet LOLA.  I found her at TJ MAXX and knew that I could not leave her behind.  She is purely decorative...by that is ok for a REAL lady:)
When the nice people at Lowe's were done cutting my pegboard for me there was a LITTLE bit left over.  I decided to make a mini display and it worked fantastic for my Little Girl hair accessories. 

I found THIS ugly mirror at Value village and sprayed it with METALLIC spray paint.  That stuff rocks. 
This isn't a great picture.  The frame now is really bright and sparkly...you know metallic:)
For the headbands, I used 2 pedestals that I had previously found at VV and then used 2 different tops.  ONE is a wine holder that I found also at VV.  What were the odds that they would have a zebra print wine holder....but it worked out.  I just tipped it upside down and voila.  The 2nd is an old oatmeal container.  I sprayed it with spray adhesive and then wrapped it in zebra wrapping paper (also from TJ MAXX).  When I was taking this picture I noticed that I forgot to cover the top, but I took care of that RIGHT before the guests arrived!!!  I saw a few of those wine holders at the dollar store also, if you are in the market.  This would work great in a little girls room to hold all those darn hair things.  You could also  hold brushes and stuff inside...

I found this super cute display box at TJ MAXX too.  It fit my Starlet Shimmer earrings so cute.  I love those things.  I wish I let Emersyn wear real earrings because I LOVE the butterflies:)

 I do not have a HUGE living room, so I decided to go with a L shape.  It worked good since people could be on both sides of the table, PLUS walk around and talk to each other OVER and AROUND the displays.  Check out Emerysn's hand...it is pretty much in every picture.  She just cannot stop touching the jewelry.  She cannot believe that we have SOOO much and thinks it is our personal stash:) 
Shopping baskets from THE DOLLAR STORE. These helped A LOT.  My sister had her's full the day before the party:) 

I could not help myself and I even Paparazzified the water.  Once you start.....

Here is the check out station...aka my kitchen counter:)  I got an old cork board at VV and covered it with...yep you guessed it...zebra wrapping paper.  I spray painted the frame pink (clearly I did that first) and then used a little picture stand I got at the dollar store.  I love it.  I know I say that A LOT...but I really do LOVE IT!!!  LOVE!!!  Anyway...I suck and didn't even get my messages put on it.  It was going to have nice little info about hosting and stuff...maybe next time:)  I also got a small and large accordion file at VV.  They were both brand new and BOTH PINK.  Again...what are the odds.  I used the large one for paperwork, receipts, etc.  I used the small one as my cash box.  For now it worked out. 
And what MAY be my favorite part.  My pens.  I found these pink flowers at VV and could NOT leave them behind.  SOOO I cut them off and hot glued them to the tops of a couple pens (strangely harder than it sounds by the way).  I had a BUNCH of pens in there, but with the 3 pretty ones, you don't even notice the ugly ones:) 

The box was from Tuesday Mornings.  They had ALL sorts of sizes and shapes, and it took WAY too long for me to decide on this one, but now it is my fave.  Just looking at its cuteness makes me happy.  PLUS it has a handle so it is easy to transport.

It held my bags and tissue paper and such, but works great for transporting ALL of my checkout stuff.  And since it has a handle....Yep....I LOVE IT!!!
ANDDDD last but not least.  Another Thrifty find.  I bought this large plastic tote for like 30 cents.  It was missing ONE handle, so I popped off the OTHER handle and tied on some ribbon.  Bing Bang Boom it carries my supplies. 
I still have 4 or 5 more VV finds that need some sprucing, but as you can see I was a little busy.  Last night was party number one and it was SOOO FUN!!!  I cannot wait to do it again.  Anyone wanna come over so I can have a party and show you my (and Emersyn's) stash!!!!