Thursday, August 7, 2014

Scotch Make Amazing Contest: Vote for Me!

Do you remember how I entered the Scotch Make Amazing Contest? Both of my entries made it into the top 10 in their categories (Squeeeeee!)

Now I need your votes! You can vote once a day in each of the categories. Here are the links to vote for each of my projects:

 Vote here under "Maker Masterpiece" for my Play Tent and see all of the up-close details on my blog here
Vote here under "Education Creations" for my Reading is a Blast bulletin board and display. See all of the up-close details and get the free printable bookmarks here on my blog. 

There is a $5,000 Grand Prize on the line for each of the categories in the Scotch Make Amazing Contest and so while I normally don't beg for things, I am begging for votes for the next three weeks! Help me win. I will be oh so grateful!

Monday, August 4, 2014

Play Nook: Scotch Make Amazing Contest

I made it into the Top 10, vote for me in the "Maker Masterpiece" category here.
For my second entry for the Scotch Make Amazing Contest, I created this fun and inviting play nook using all sorts of Scotch tape, Scotch Repair Glue (works so great I may never use anything else!), Command strips and the regular Scotch crafting supplies including scissors and a utility knife. 

The tent in the play nook is perfect for reading or napping and was created using two pieces of foamboard and then decorated in Scotch tape in a diamond pattern. I used two of my favorite patterns, Scotch Peacock Duct tape and Scotch Mint Mosaic Masking tape. The front poles are dowels wrapped in tape and then glued using Scotch Repair Glue.  
 The "play" letters are wooden letters covered in two types of Scotch masking tape.
 The playful butterfly was created on poster board and decorated in Scotch Expressions tape and Scotch Duct tape. All of its fine details were hand-cut with my Scotch Utility Knife.
The little bunting is hung on twine and created by folding over pieces of Scotch tape and then trimming the ends.  
The tent is really our favorite part of the nook...or wait, is it the butterfly?....or maybe the cute little bunting?...maybe we just love it all. It is a great place to read or color and I find my kids hanging out in it quite often.

Sunday, August 3, 2014

Reading Is A Blast Bulletin Board & Free Printable

I made it into the Top 10, vote for me in the "Education Creations" category here.
I decided to enter the Scotch Make Amazing Contest with this bright and colorful bulletin board display. It is created using a lot Scotch Expressions tape, Scotch Duct Tape, Scotch Washi Tape, and my Scotch Laminator along with a few other Scotch essentials including a utility knife, scissors double sided tape and glue. I thought you would enjoy the details on how each of the pieces were created.
"Reading" is created out of tape. I printed the outlines of the letters on white cardstock and then used various colors of tape, some cut into tiny triangles and arranged in a mosaic pattern. Scotch star shaped Post-It Notes decorate the entire board. 

 This word took me hours to complete. I think I was dreaming of tiny triangles that night.

The top of my bulletin board display is decorated with a box of books, the box decorated in tape to look like a shuttle panel, the inside with Scotch Duct tape. The containers of pencils and bookmarks are decorated in tape as well.
 I also included the Scotch doodle pad for writing down favorite books or quotes. 
I designed these bookmarks and am including a link for a free printable here (for personal use only).
I printed the bookmarks and decorated the backs with Scotch tape and then sent them through my handy, dandy Scotch laminator. 
The pencils are wrapped in different colors of Scotch tape. 

 Every rocket theme needs a countdown, so I included a countdown of the top 4th grade books. The entire bulletin board is decorated in Scotch Star Shaped Post-It Notes. 

 These fun little rockets were so easy to make using the Scotch tape and Scotch glue. They would make a great project for the classroom and are fun to create and decorate however you want.
 The huge rocket is about 3 feet long and was created using poster board decorated in various kinds of Scotch tape.
 The moon is also decorated with silver Scotch tape to add a bit of moon detail. 
 Every little reading nook should have a bright colored rug. The rug is made using Scotch masking tape and Duct tape. The bright colors and diagonal pattern make it fun in the space.
In the bookcase, I used Scotch Duct tape and clear packing tape to cover these magazine holders and to break up different genres of books. 
I had so much fun creating all of these little projects out of tape. My kids love the little "library" in our house and never want to take it down.

Follow along on Instagram to see all of the #makeamazingcontest entries and follow @ScotchProducts to watch the final countdown on the winners. I am hoping one of them is me!

Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Bio-Identical Hormones at Elase + A Giveaway

It is no secret that I have PCOS and my hormones are completely out of control. In fact, infertility and adoption are things we often talk about around here, that kind of talk is completely welcome and normal to us (so much so that sometimes I forget it isn't normal to talk about with just anyone ;-). What I don't always talk about is the crazy, hormonal banshee that is around our house sometimes. So here we go, let's get real about it.
There are some days where I want to rip my hair out, where I know that I am being completely ridiculous and think to myself, you've got to pull it together, but I really just can't. My hormones take over and I am all over the place. I am certain I should probably lock myself in my room and not come out (and trust me, that has happened and probably welcomed by my family members).
But my insane cycles that I have had since I was 12 years old just added to all of that and I would turn into a raging lunatic. While I thought some of that had gotten better, I realize now that I had just accepted the fact that my hormones were that way and tried to deal with it in the best way I could.
 What I didn't know up until 5 months ago was how much better it could be. When I had the opportunity to work with Elase I was excited about so many things. Of course getting rid of my manbeard was at the top of the list (thank you PCOS), the VIVE weight loss program, photo facials, chemical peels and even Botox, but I was also completely intrigued by the bio-identical hormone therapy. So, I set up an appointment to meet with Catherine, the nurse practitioner at Elase, and had my blood work done.
I went back the next week to go over the results and she asked me a few questions. For example, did I felt anxious? Sure, sometimes. She asked me if I had a hard time sleeping. Yes, but I am a busy mom of three with a lot on my plate!!! She asked me if I felt like I was always in attack mode and if even the smallest things irritated me. And I asked her if she had talked to my husband! Because certainly he must have told her how insane I could be because she was describing me to a tee. And then we laughed and laughed because that is one of my favorite things to do with the ladies at Elase.
Catherine knew exactly why I was feeling that way and went over my blood work with me pointing out how low my progesterone was (basically non-existent) and how high my testosterone was (almost triple what it should be) as well as the lack of Vitamin D in my body. She went over the good aspects too like my thyroid and cholesterol levels. She sent in a prescription for progesterone and told me to use it as a tool. If I was feeling anxious and irritated I should take some progesterone because more than likely I was lacking and could use that boost.
I am so, so glad I went to see Catherine to see how bio-identical hormones could help me. I haven't felt this good in ages. Truly. I don't feel like the crazy, hormonal banshee that I was (and had been for a while). As long as I have my progesterone and Vitamin D, I feel like my best self (except those days I forget and then I see a glimpse of that crazy banshee self that no one misses around here!). And this may be too much information (I told you I was keeping it real) but for the first time in my life, I have had a regular cycle for five months in a row. I will spare you the details but that alone has changed my life! I never knew it should be like this because it never has been until now. Thank you, Catherine & Elase! You are the best!

And because Elase loves my readers as much as I do, they are giving away a FREE Chemical Peel & Elase tote to one of you! While I haven't had a chance to get a chemical peel yet (it is definitely on my list), my good friend, Kim did and you can read about her experience here. Your skin can be feeling fresh and new just in time for the holidays! And for all of you up near Station Park in Farmington, they have a new location coming oh so soon, so enter away.

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Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Gardner Village with My Craft Channel

I love the quaint little shops at Gardner Village and always enjoy shopping and wandering through the little village of houses. Blogger's Night Out was no exception. Thanks for having me, My Craft Channel!

 Lucinda was hilarious throughout the entire evening.  

Pine Needles is always one of my favorite shops. I love their fabric, their rick rack and love, love, loved this little happy bunting. I am certain I need to make myself one. 
Gardner Village is so close to my house and I love heading over there for the morning, grabbing something to eat and getting a little shopping in. This Saturday is their Midnight Madness event. Have you been? I haven't but think it could be a lot of fun.

Monday, September 30, 2013

Fall Is In The Air: Free Printable

I am sitting here in my cozy sweatshirt with a blanket on my lap and the thermostat saying it is a mere 63 degrees in my house. My popsicle toes definitely thought it was cooler than that. Fall is in the air. It always creeps up on us and lets us know the crisp air and cooler weather is here to stay. I am certain the change in weather warrants some hot cocoa, fuzzy slippers and a good book. I am also certain it warrants a free printable with the best things fall has to offer. Download it here.

Saturday, September 28, 2013

Laser Hair Removal Follow-Up

Remember the manbeard? I am happy to tell you that after just a few months of laser hair removal, it is almost non-existent. I am feeling much less...manly. I still have some peach fuzz that grows (don't we all) but I definitely don't worry about it every. single. day. like I was when the manbeard was in full force. I touch a few little hairs about once a week and other than that, I am no longer worrying about my pesky beard. Hallelujah!
The laser hair removal treatments take less than five minutes and are not uncomfortable at all. I normally use Dr. Numb but the last time I completely forgot until I got to my appointment. While it was warm (it is a laser afterall), it wasn't painful. And since it is so fast and I had cool air blowing on my face, it wasn't a big deal.
The technician's at Elase are awesome and even ask where the thickest parts of my man beard were so they could go over them another time. I love that because those are the spots I definitely don't want to see coming back!
Goodbye manbeard! I wish I could say that I will miss you but I am more than happy to see you go.

Follow @elasespas on Instagram for specials, beauty tips and giveaways!

Full Disclosure: While I am working with Elase and receiving services in exchange for sharing my opinion, my opinions and experiences are all my own.

Thursday, September 26, 2013

Gratitude for the Women in My Life

My SIL, my cousin, my aunt & me. Girls trip, Olympia, WA July 2013

This journey we call life can be so crazy and I am so very grateful for good friends (some of which happen to be family too!) to share it with. Life is full of excitement, laughter and fun filled days but amongst all of that are the crazy, exhausting days. Days where I really just want to curl up in my bed and cry myself to sleep. Days where I know I don't have all of the answers but just try my best. Days where I pray that I am making the best decision for my kids and for our family. Days where I feel like a complete failure as a mom.  

Thankfully I have wonderful women surrounding me in my life. Women of strength, faith, courage and love. They are women I can always count on, who always lend a listening ear, who I can laugh with, who never judge, who reassure and comfort, who understand and who are inspired. I can truly just be myself around them and share the good, the bad and the ugly. They make me want to be a better person, a better mother and a better wife.

I am certain it is because of these women that I have survived the last six months. They build me up, reassure me and remind me of what truly is important. For that, I am forever grateful. 

Friday, September 13, 2013

Guest Blogging at "Is This Really My Life"

Sharing one of my most requested recipes over on my friend, Emily's blog {Is This Really My Life} today. You won't want to miss it. Hop on over here.  

Saturday, September 7, 2013

My Favorite VIVE Shake Recipe

With any protein shake, it takes a few tries to really get it just how you like it. It definitely took me a few shakes when I first started the VIVE program to make me feel like I could keep doing the meal replacement shakes. Here is my favorite recipe:

In the blender:

4 oz. chocolate Hood milk (I had never heard of this but Smith's & Walmart both carry it)
1 Tbsp. Omega 3-6-9 Udo oil
2 scoops chocolate WIO MRP
6 to 8 ice cubes
4 oz. of water
4 drops of coconut or peanut butter flavoring
I simply add to blender in that order. Blend until all of the ice is finely mixed, grab a straw and enjoy. The coconut flavoring reminds me of an Almond Joy and since I am not eating anything like that anymore, it sort of feels like a treat. My back-up flavoring of choice is peanut butter. After all, who doesn't love peanut butter and chocolate?

If I do not have time for the blender or am mixing it on the go, I simply add more ice (10 to 12 ice cubes rather than 6) and more water (8 oz. of water instead of 4). That way it is a bit thinner and it stays cold while I drink it. I like it to be more of a consistency of chocolate milk if I can't have it like an icy cold shake.

Full Disclosure: While I am working with Elase Medical Spas and receiving services in exchange for sharing my opinions, all opinions are my own.