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1.31.2011

because i love you!

1.31.2011  at 7:00 AM

No, not you, silly. Well, I guess I do love that you love iloveitall...wait, that's not what this post is all about. I want to show you a coupon book that I made for Gordon last year for Valentine's Day. We have a history of coupons in our relationship, so when he opens a gift bag and sees something resembling what could be a coupon book, his eyes light up.

I promise to tell the history of this one day. Pinky Promise, as my girls say.

Here's the front of the coupon book you can find in my Etsy shop, I Love It All.
And two sample coupons from my gift to Gordon last year:

one of five couponstaking turns

The twine is removable...it slips right off so that you can write your coupons and then slip it back on for gift-giving.


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1.30.2011

and the winner is

1.30.2011  at 8:08 PM
According to random.org the winner of the acrylic stamp set from Colorbok is:


Congratulations,  Leptir! Please contact me with your address and I will mail your goody package to you.




giveaway sunday

  at 7:00 AM

I usually have a Sunday Photo waiting for you each week, but decided to switch it up a bit in 2011!

As I was cleaning out my stash and straightening up my craft space, I realized that I had some things that I haven't used at all and some items that are gently used that I could offer up as giveaway items to those who might want them. 

On one random Sunday each month, I'll have an item, or items, that I'm going to pass along to you, if it's something you're interested in winning. This is today's item, a set of 4 clear stamps from Colorbok's Woodhaven collection.


Comments will only remain open until this evening at 8pm.





1.29.2011

last first day

1.29.2011  at 7:00 AM
First off, I wish that I had used a different marker for the written part of the title. It ruins the whole page for me. I might have to "fix" this. One day. But, that's not why I'm highlighting this layout today. The reason is this:


I need to find a way to tell the story I have in my head and translate that all to a layout. I read the journaling I've written here and as I do, I know the back story because I lived it. A handful of other people do too. But reading this as a semi-interested person might, I would think that it lacks depth. It's not that what I've written isn't true. It is. But it's all so very much on the surface type of observations. I want to tell THE STORY, not A story.

Cute title. Cute kid. Nice color combo. But no meat.

Note to self. Forget about making the page look good. Forget about everything else but telling the stories you have in your head and getting them down on paper. Please.

Having said all that, have you signed up for the free class with Karen Grunberg at Big Picture Classes? It starts in February and I'm ready to Embrace Imperfection. Are you?

Pssst, it's one of the projects I have in my Participate section of the sidebar!

1.28.2011

love notes :: a free download

1.28.2011  at 7:00 AM
love notes.

for him.
for her.
for them.
for you.
to fit in a lunchbox.
a backpack.
a purse.
an envelope.
under a pillow.


I trimmed the love note and added it to the front of a ready-made card base. The addition of the pink chipboard heart makes it extra cute! Excuse the dust. This is a real home, not a tv home.


Inside this cabinet is coffee central, and the last stop Gordon makes on his way out the door for work in the morning. It's a sure thing he'll see this! And it's also a sure thing that he'll shake his head at my extreme goofiness. You could also hang it from the rear view mirror in the car if you can sneak out to do it with hubby being none the wiser. I used Marschino baker's twine from The Twinery to thread through the holes I punched at the top of the love note.


You probably knew that I was going to come up with a way to use these as treat bag toppers, so here you go. Using the Lilac twine from The Twinery, I punched two holes with my Crop-o-Dile through the bag and topper layers and threaded a lilac punched heart {to pick up on the purple hues in the background paper} through at the same time and tied a square knot to hold it all together. The bags are from the Dollar Tree {40 for $1}.


And lastly, the bedtime love note:


Just a few ideas I came up with, but the sky's the limit. Feel free to personalize and customize these as you wish. You could even trim inside the lines if you don't like the background paper I designed. Can you believe, I designed my own "paper." Get your free download here {for personal use only} or in the sidebar or under the blog header in the menu bar.




Enjoy the freebies and have fun coming up with even more ways to use these little love notes for all the sweeties in your life! And don't forget to join my the mailing list for my newsletter {sign up in my sidebar}. Exclusive downloads and coupon codes for my Etsy shop will be shared!






1.27.2011

52Photos :: shadow

1.27.2011  at 7:00 AM




my 52Photos capture

I've been somewhat of a wimp this Winter season and haven't wanted to venture outside much as I just can't seem to stay warm. If I exercised a bit, this might help my circulation and the feeling of always being cold, but I don't and that's my own fault.

The cold hasn't stopped the girls from wanting to go outside and on this particular day, I conned Zach into heading out with his sisters. It wasn't too hard to convince him, as they started off with Zachi helping Isabella with her basketball skills. By this time, Victoria had moved on to bike helmets and bikes and tricycles and such which led Isabella to her bike helmet and bicycle.

During all thi,s Cocoa, the cutest little Puppy that Santa's "helper" asked us to bring home for him a few days before Christmas, was terrorizing all attempts at basketball, walking in general and certainly bike-riding. 

I looked out the kitchen window and saw this scenario and felt that this unposed, technically imperfect, poorly composed photograph of the uncutest part of our whole property {see that telephone pole, power line? hate it...but Gordon reminds me that underground utilities were not an option when Mamaw and Papaw built our house and that I should be lucky to even have electricity. hmph.} And it happens to be about the most perfect description of shadow I could ever have hoped for. It's our life.

Duke, the border collie, is the herder of his family. Caring for {and snuggling with} the four cats that look to him for protection from Cocoa, the two girls who once tried to ride him, the boy that was once a boy but is now a man and still loves throwing the ball for him. He follows each and every one of them around, making sure they are okay...he is their shadow.

Cocoa, the chocolate lab, is the chewingest rascal of the bunch. She does not stay in one place too long, but  certainly has her little nose into everything as she checks out all the new things she has yet to discover...she is their shadow.

Zach, the tallest rascal of the bunch. He'll always be a boy to me, because that's the way I want to remember him. He is not a shadow as much as he is shadowed...by his loyal dog, Duke, and by his loving, adoring sisters.

Isabella, the oldest daughter and middle child, is the most leader-like rascal of the bunch. She likes to be in charge and take charge, easily telling the dogs, her brother and her sister just how it needs to be done. She shadows her brother somewhat, but prefers to be shadowed, just to show who's boss.

Victoria, the youngest daughter and last baby, is the most rascaliest rascal of the bunch. She loves running around after the dogs, the cats, the brother and the sister, thinking that it's the best thing in the whole wide world. She brings sunshine to all those around her and doesn't stay still long enough to cast a shadow!

A long story for you to have to mull through, but a great story for me to have journaled. Oh, and by the way, we have a cat named Rascal, so for me, I was chuckling each time I wrote rascal. Sorry, a girl's gotta have a little fun.

next week's theme

letter

the wrap-up

We're up to 102 52Photos Flickr group members! You may have noticed the new procedure for uploading photos...they are being reviewed by Lisa so that we assure all photos in our group are applicable to the week's theme. It seems that we had quite a few contributors that were part of other Flickr 52 photos groups and just added their photos to our group whether it fit our theme or not. So, more work for Lisa, but a better control over what gets posted to the group.

Did you guys happen to see these cool garlands the girls and I made together? We made them with a downloadable item from Lisa's Etsy shop!



If you're new to 52Photos, go here for an explanation, a blog button and an invitation to join our 52 week journey of discovery! It's never too late to join.







1.25.2011

the alphabet of our love :: featuring The Twinery

1.25.2011  at 7:00 AM

This cute little mini was featured here when I shared with you that I had made it for Gordon as an anniversary gift.

#alphabet #love #valentinesday #valentine #abcsoflove #alphabet of our love
use the coupon code
ALPHABET
for 15% off any purchase over $30.00


So, I got to thinking that it would make an equally nice Valentine's Day gift, or birthday gift even. It's in the shop in plenty of time for gift giving to that someone special...you know, the one that still makes your heart go pitter patter. Even after almost 13 years. Oh, sorry, that's me. 

Back to our show...

The mini comes almost exactly as you see it. All 28 pages will be bound with my Bind-it-All, it will have some variety of coordinating ribbon adorning the o-wires and you will be receiving the most perfectly vivid shade of Marschino baker's twine as an embellishment for your journal cover as seen below. Wow, what a difference a really good twine makes. It this doesn't spur you to make a purchase from The Twinery, wait until you read on!

The Twinery just announced three new colors of twine...go here to see more info, but here's a sneak peek:


Plus, there's a giveaway and a discount code for 25% off. What are you still doing here? You have stuff to do...checking out my Etsy shop and stopping by The Twinery blog for the 411 on new colors, discounts and giveaways. Oh, my!






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1.24.2011

words to live by?

1.24.2011  at 7:00 AM
LIVE
LAUGH
LOVE

Live your life with joy. Laugh as often as you can. Love with all your heart.

As I was writing those words to introduce a new print in the shop, which I first debuted to my Facebook friends, I was struck by how much I liked what those words said. I stopped right then and created a companion piece to go along with the first print. 

Therefore, I am now sharing with you not only the 8x10 version {above} that I am displaying in our sunroom, but also the 5x7 versions you see below.


I didn't think the pastels would look all that great in our sunroom since we have bold and bright colors there. I only placed the print there to photograph it, but ended up liking it so well, that I have left the print just where it is. The bonus is that I see it as I exit the dining room and head into the living room, subliminally giving myself a message to "follow the rules."

Words to live by?  Well, JOY is my one little word for 2011...and I'm thinking that this is a bonus project toward meeting my 2011 blog goals. I have a few more projects to finish up in the next few days so that I can share them with you and list them in the shop, too, so I've gotta run and start working!



1.22.2011

snow bunny

1.22.2011  at 7:00 AM
Is it bad to use an Easter themed Making Memories multipack for this SNOW layout? Is it terrible that said paper is from 2007? Ummmm...


...not at all. Use your stash, baby. Not many people will know that you're using yesterday's hottest item.  I would say that the people looking at your layouts won't even know that there are hot items in the scrapbooking world and what those hot items would even be. So, let it go and just do it!

Speaking of using the hottest items, I finally got on the Japanese washi tape  party train and ordered some from Etsy. Great service and cute packaging, too! I like that. Let's see now, the rest of the layout items are not from the paper pack...the journaling stickers are quite old K&Company items, I used the Threading Waters border punch from Fiskars, the chipboard letter is from Colorbok, the label punch is from EK Success and is called Real Estate {my new fave} and purchased with a 40% off coupon at Hobby Lobby.


Details: I gave the paper flower element some dimension by punching 5 or 6 circles from cardstock and glueing and stacking them behind the flower. Voila, homemade pop dots for a larger item!


And this is also a MM element from the same line, just not in the paper pack. You'll notice that the epoxy embellishment says easter. If you'll head back to the layout photo at the top of the post, you'll see that I strategically placed a flower petal to hide the word easter.

When I saw that I was lucky enough to capture Victoria hopping in mid air, I remembered that I had the epoxy sticker with the bunny. So, I played with the embellishments until I found a way to make it all work. That girl, she finds fun in absolutely everything. When she saw Isabella outside with DaDa on this snowy day, I heard her footsteps running upstairs. Little did I know that she stayed in her jammies and ran outside with this interesting get-up. Cute. Cute. Cute.

Disclaimer: I admit that I did not post a layout for our first week of my 2011 blog goal of one layout a week. But, I am 2 for 3 and the way I'm seeing it, that's still a good thing. If you're posting a layout a week, too, leave me a link in the comments and I'll stop by for a visit and a look!



1.21.2011

treasures of the heart

1.21.2011  at 7:00 AM

Another little project I made back in 2009 for Valentine's Day. 

Mini Album in a Tin | iloveitallwithmonikawright.com

I made one for Nana {Gordon's Mom}, one for Oma {my Mom} and one for Mommy {me} to carry in our purses. You know how it is when you see someone you've not seen for a while and their first question is, "Do you have pictures of the kids?" Well, you and I, we have our cell phones with at least a few pics on there, right? Our Moms have cell phones, too, but photos of the kids on there? No. At least not ours. And if they did, they wouldn't know how to access them. So, I thought this was a cute spin on a brag album.

I feel pretty safe saying all this because no one in my family reads my blog. And if you do, hey, leave a comment so I know you're out there, okay?

I recycled a Christmas gift card tin, thinking that the colors fit so well with my patterned papers and that the snowflakes didn't look too snowflake-y, even for February. Each kiddo has their own mini-album page and three characteristics unique to them at the time. I included their ages, too, because I'm often at a loss for exactly when a photo was taken. I decorated the insides of the gift tin with more of the coordinating patterned paper, but you wouldn't have to do that. The mini is held together with a simple ball chain, which is a nice contrast to the "cuteness" of the album.

Mini Album in a Tin | iloveitallwithmonikawright.com
Mini Album in a Tin | iloveitallwithmonikawright.comMini Album in a Tin | iloveitallwithmonikawright.comMini Album in a Tin | iloveitallwithmonikawright.com
Mini Album in a Tin | iloveitallwithmonikawright.com

And the last photo? All the items I make for family, I sign off with "The Wright Stuff" and the year. Yeah, I'm kind of goofy like that.



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1.20.2011

52Photos :: evening

1.20.2011  at 7:00 AM


my 52Photos capture

"How do I capture our evening routine?" That's what I've been asking myself all week as I mulled the evening theme over in my head. And as I browsed and oohed and aahed at the contributions to this week's Flickr gallery. So, in the end, at the 11th hour {well, actually 7:10 pm EDT} I snapped this pic. For me, it sums up so much:
  • how Gordon and I have a good rhythm most of the time and make a pretty good team as we try to make our evenings go smoother...even though I am a stay-at-home-Mom, it still gets so crazy here the last 30 minutes before bedtime
  • how Spunky is just so spunky! She goes strong all day long, even after she lays her sleepy head on her pillow. She just does not want to give it up and succumb to quiet. She's like the Energizer bunny!
  • how Victoria is rebellious when it comes to cleaning up...hiding items under her bed, in the baskets in her nightstand {which used to be the changing table for both our girls, painted a different color, and a changing table for both Gordon and his brother before that...I just can't seem to give it away because I am a sentimental fool} and behind her pillows
  • how Victoria insists upon each of her bedtime buddies there beside her, but rarely hugs one as she goes to sleep much preferring to walk around with Puppy {very original name, eh?} at odd moments during the day
  • and lastly, how she does not like to be "tucked" and wants her arms out of the blanket

So this is my secondary contribution just for my blog...a sweet shot of our Precious loving on her DaDa. Here, I'm reminded of:


  • how this big girl used to be so tiny, always in the under 2nd percentile on the growth charts and now is tall and slim and gorgeous as ever
  • how she has slacked off a bit on being the best cleaner-upper of our two girls and has taken to using a few of Victoria's hiding tricks
  • how she loves all things pink, I don't think that will ever change
  • how she loves her sleeping buddies and is so, so heartbroken when she loses getting to sleep with them when she's done something wrong
  • how she has a certain order for placing each and every sleep buddy in her arms each night, but that Pink Kitty {as opposed to Grey Kitty - see how original our girls are with their naming skills?} must always be closest to her heart
  • how this little Precious falls asleep faster than anyone, almost as soon as her head hits the pillow
  • how Isabella likes to be "tucked" and really prefers a double "tuck"

next week's theme

shadow

the wrap-up

We're up to 97 photo-clicking, camera-loving, adventurous 52Photos Flickr group members! Many of us are blogging about our photos on our blogs, which adds to the excitement as more people decide to check out what all the fun is about. Lisa and I are glad you've joined us and have found such interesting and inspiring ways to capture our weekly themes.

If you're new to 52Photos, go here for an explanation, a blog button and an invitation to join our 52 week journey of discovery!


 




1.19.2011

it's a banner day!

1.19.2011  at 7:00 AM

UPDATE  |  Welcome to all of you visiting from The Twinery today! I'll have another banner idea post {with tutorial} featuring felt hearts and twine on The Twinery blog next week, so please do drop in again.
+ + + + +

I had the opportunity to play with a fun download from Lisa's Etsy shop. The great thing about it was that even though Lisa is in Sweden, BTW we're also 52Photos partners, I was able to download and print the very same day. No waiting...instant gratification! A good thing for time-crunched mama's!


The "be mine" garland is strung with Pink Sorbet baker's twine from The Twinery. I hung it from the shelves in our bedroom that has tons of photos of our kids {and just a few of us, ha, ha}. I used my 1" circle punch for the letters and then glued the letters to pink scallop-punched cardstock, which I then glued to recycled book pages. I now wish that I had added the heart scallop to a book page also, but it's still cute just the way it is. I like the clean, simple look of this project.

Of course, the girls played along, too, and had a ball with the glue sticks. Each of them picked out their own phrases, glued their own letters {that's why a few are a little wonky} and chose what color cardstock and baker's twine they wanted to use!

For Victoria's garland, we used Lilac twine and gathered three strands of twine to knot between each letter and heart. She did not take Mommy's recommendation to use the pattern xo, xo, xo. She thought that x, heart, o, heart, x, heart, o was a much better pattern and wouldn't compromise. Ca-ute, just like my Spunky!


And for Isabella's garland, she chose Pink Sorbet twine. This time, I just knotted three short strands of baker's twine at each end of the phrase {u r loved} and hung from her bedroom door. Precious, just as she is!


And, yes, it IS possible to make a garland look masculine enough for the boys in your life, click over to check it out!



1.18.2011

10 things i love about you

1.18.2011  at 7:00 AM


These are the Valentine's Day cards I made for the kids last year and I am happy to report that they still enjoy pulling them out and looking at them.

I used double-sided patterned cardstock and Thickers from American Crafts for the girls' cards and SEI for Zach's. I also added a small piece of patterned paper inside the pocket area of the girls' cards to add just a bit more color and interest.

Construct your own {heart} day card by keeping your cardstock in one piece and cutting, scoring and folding where needed. I also used my scallop scissors on the part folded down to form the pocket {didn't own a border punch last year and still only own one!}. Although you don't have to use your sewing machine to make this card, I happen to love that feature of the card.

For the numbered tabs, I used this McGill punch and trimmed my paper strips to the same width as the punched cardstock. Using my word processing program, I typed my list of "things i love" and printed and trimmed to fit. The beauty of this project is that you can use what you have on hand. Plus, using your own handwriting would most likely make this card treasured even more!


These were really fun to make and I encourage you to try them for yourself, you won't be disappointed! If you don't have the time, I have this larger verions of this card design available in my Etsy shop.

NOTE | Find other "10 Things" mini books in my shop!


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1.17.2011

heart day countdown calendar

1.17.2011  at 7:00 AM

Valentine's Day Countdown Calendar Cookie Sheet

Valentine's Day Countdown Calendar | iloveitallwithmonikawright.com


This project is one that I shared in the write.click.scrapbook. Flickr gallery before I was a team member. Before I had a blog. I had seen a lot of bloggers doing cookie sheet calendars and thought that I would try my hand at it. I can't give credit to the person that inspired me because I didn't have my Tumblr then, or Pinterest to keep track of what inspired me. 

So, here's what I said about my heart day cookie tray calendar then:

Many people spray paint their cookie sheets, but I didn't because I wanted this done quickly and didn't want to wait. Plus, we have stainless in our kitchen and this is being displayed on the kitchen counter. American Crafts paper and numbers (ran out of 1's, so cut off top and bottom of a zero and made an 11 and cut a 4 into a 1 and used something else for the zero in the 10) were used as well as Martha Stewart wedding favor tin heart boxes (they open) found at Big Lots. Didn't buy anything but the cookie sheet for this project.

And I remember that I asked Gordon to stop by Dollar General to pick up a cheap one for me while he was out in town. And he did. He's so good to me.




Valentine's Day Countdown Calendar | iloveitallwithmonikawright.com




As for what's inside those heart-shaped hinged wedding favor tins...small Dove chocolates and little notes about activities for us to do as a family or as craft projects {that means just Mommy and the girls!}. I also put clues, sort of like a scavenger hunt...sometimes it was a love letter under their pillows, sometimes a trip to town to get a cherry-limeade {yum-o}. You get the idea. The tins are held on with magnets that I applied.


This year when I pull the calendar out of the crawl space storage area, I will probably design something new to add to the middle to replace what is there. Link me up with any Valentine's Day projects you've been working on, I'd love to take a peek!


And can you believe this? The girls at eighteen25 featured this very same project on their extremely cute blog {that has a HUGE following} a few days ago. Kind of a huge deal, at least for me. Oh, you have to scroll down to the third project!


All this week I'll be sharing more {heart} day crafts with you so I hope you'll come back to visit again soon.




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1.15.2011

and the winner is...

1.15.2011  at 9:13 PM




amyp...please contact me, you are the winner of this Family Love Subway Art in your choice of colors. And, wow! 42 comments! I think this might be the most commented on giveaway I've had.

I don't have the prints listed yet, but they will be by Monday morning. And I am using several of the suggestions you guys made in the comments! Good, good reading and tons of ideas and color combos and design options for me to think about. Thank you for your opinions and your input.

BONUS: If you'd like to purchase your own 8x10 Family Love Subway Art print from me when once they are in the shop, be sure to mention OPINIONS in your message to seller and I'll give you FREE SHIPPING on your print until Wednesday, January 19, 2011. I'm not able to refund your shipping costs until after I have confirmed payment in PayPal.

In the meantime, if you'd like to send me a friend request on Facebook, I often offer special discounts publicized only on Facebook. Just an idea that my friend, Andrea, suggested. She's in the middle of a blog re-design herself by none other than the very talented, very sweet Kristina Proffitt at One Happy Mama! Yippee! Kristina does blog designs on every level and in price ranges to meet everyone's budget. Blog re-designs and happy art are also available.




That's just one extremely cute example of happy art, which you've seen before in my sidebar. Kristina even has a Blog Design class available if you're a DIY kind of gal. You can read more about it all here.

And always remember, Life IS Great!






layout a week :: double-page design

  at 7:00 AM
As I work myself into getting used to my new blog goals and schedules, I realized that I hadn't shared a layout with you {each week} of January as part of my layout a week goal. Until I get my layouts photographed and posts written, I'll share with you a layout created for my gig at Ella Publishing which was featured this past week on the Ella blog. You see, I'm an Ella Friend, which means I am on their design team along with some amazingly creative and inspiring ladies.


Our assignment was to create double-page layouts using the sketch {created by Donna Jannuzzi} on page 28 of the newest Ella e-Book, Double-Page Design. I altered my layout just a bit, as it was originally designed to be a 12x12 double-page spread. Instead, I went for an 8.50x11 double-page layout.

This is only my second ever 2-page layout. The first was made for this very same book and is featured on page 5 with a 5 photo 2-page spread.

Back to the layout:

For a sub-title, I used the craft beads I had from art projects with my two girls to spell out Hilton Head. I strung them on some floral wire, but made it appear that I had strung them on baker's twine from The Twinery. I made the envelope closures by punching a 3/4" circle and used my Crop-o-Dile to add a brad. I used cappuccino baker's twine again to string the shell we had found {in Aruba} so that it would hang from my chipboard frame...it already had a hole in it when we found it!
The title {at} comes from our middle child, Isabella, always saying we were going "at" the beach, not "to" the beach. The arrow is pointing to the word "at" and the } is pointing toward the daughter that coined the phrase. Little things we might forget. And since we generally go on vacation the week of our wedding anniversary, and this layout is going in the "we" album, I added a heart to the collage of photos on the right side of the layout using pop dots for some dimension. 
I used the white space at the bottom of the photo of us walking on the beach to place my title, using an arrow attached to the frame to draw attention into the page. The grid paper might be an unusual choice for a beach layout, but the subtle coloring of the graph lines in the colors sand and sea fit my theme without being too obvious.

Edited to Add: Zach is not in the photo of us walking the beach because he decided that he did not really want to be in any photos during our vacation. Zachy-downer.

So, I finally have a link for the layout a week category in my PARTICIPATE section in the sidebar. Hopefully, by this time next year, there will be at least 52 posts for you to browse! So, do you guys do a layout a week, too?


You have until today at Noon to enter this giveaway!




1.13.2011

52Photos :: independence

1.13.2011  at 7:00 AM


my 52Photos capture

Seven years ago, after having my middle child Isabella, I again made the decision to be a stay-at-home Mom. I had made that same decision 11 years earlier when Zach was born. And, it was a surprising decision for me both times. I knew that those younger years were so important for a child and felt that it was something I should try, especially since my plan was to nurse and I knew it would be tough to do so and work full-time also. But, even more so because I was an independent, head-strong gal who never thought she would put kids before career. But I did. 

I stayed home with Zach for 3 years until his Father and I divorced and I became the supporter of our little family. No child support, needing a car, needing to find a safe place for us to live, having just begun a new job and parents living a whole day's plane ride away. We made it. We were happy.

Enter Gordon {aka Mr. wRight}, an interesting courtship, our marriage with Zach as ring bearer, Isabella's birth 5 years later and Victoria's birth 7 years later. Yep, second time as a stay-at-home Mom, again leaving the career behind. No regrets. Lots of hugs and kisses and messes and art projects and well, you know.

But, during these last seven years, I have missed making decisions that people actually want to hear and follow-through with {the kids not so much, right?}, missed earning a salary to contribute to the well-being of our family, missed the creative juices flowing at the start of a new project. Now, I wasn't a jet-setting anything. I was an Assistant Vice President and Director of Marketing for an 11-branch community bank.  

So, six months ago, I took the plunge and finally put items for sale in my Etsy shop that had been open since 2008. Can you believe it, two years sitting empty? And that's why my blog name is what it is...I wanted to tie it in to my Etsy shop when I started blogging at the same time. Why not put that Marketing degree to good use, right?

You endured that very long explanation to arrive at this: my Etsy shop and blog have provided so many things for me, but mostly a new-found independence. On me. And what I want to do or not do to make it succeed. Oh, and I'm able to surprise the family with a few things that didn't get purchased through the mutual account. Empowering, too, if I may admit that to you.

next week's theme

evening

the wrap-up

52Photos is up to 78 80 members in the Flickr group as of Wednesday afternoon. It's been a real pleasure to see your photos and how you are each interpreting the theme. There's a blog roll that's been started if you want to add your name, do a little visiting or make some comments. Don't forget to stop by Lisa's blog to say hi...they've just had more snow in Sweden, too!

If you're new to 52Photos, go here for an explanation, a blog button and an invitation to join our 52 week journey of discovery!




Don't forget that you still have time to enter this giveaway for a free print!





1.12.2011

research and opinions

1.12.2011  at 11:46 AM
There are so many different design options for a Valentine's Day subway art print. 

It can be cute. 
It can be sexy. 
It can be witty.

I went for the family love option!




It's not even in the shop yet because I wanted to ask your opinion...

What colors should I offer this in? Should the "&" and "4" be the same color as the text? I thought of adding a heart somewhere...is that lame? It's currently sized to 8x10 to make it more affordable, but would you be interested in 5x7 or 11x14, too?

To reward you for helping me to conduct some market research, just leave a comment with your opinion{s}. Each comment left earns you a chance to win your very own print. Giveaway ends on Saturday at Noon EST. Winner gets to choose the color of their choice. 

I appreciate that so many readers are Etsy shop customers, too. I thank you so much!

I think this would be cute for a child's bedroom, the bathroom, the playroom, maybe even next to your favorite spot for reading bedtime stories. I'm putting one on the mantle in our family room {puppy central, DVD-watching area, art project arena - you get the idea}. 

Now, if only I could decide what color to print for our family. Decisions, decisions.





1.11.2011

what do?

1.11.2011  at 7:00 AM

What do binder rings, crafting beads, little girls and a 19-year old son have in common?

Book Binder Ring Bracelets | iloveitallwithmonikawright.com

The bored 19-year old son was in the laundry room {I mean Mommy's craft room} twirling around some binder rings I had in my Etsy shop packaging area {top of front-loading washer} when 2 little girls walked in and wanted to play with binder rings, too. Son mentioned that the binder rings would make bracelets. 

Light bulb goes off in Mommy's head. She goes out to the cabinet full of crafting supplies and pulls out what's left of the millions of crafting beads she's bought and collected over the 7 years she's had little girls. Somehow there are fewer than she thought, but more than enough for this project.

Here's where you go to find your own supply of 2" book binder rings {which happen to fit my 5- and 7-year old girls perfectly} and crafting beads. This Mommy just happened to have some on hand...you know, being a scrapbooker and an Etsy shop entrepreneur {fancy word for the day} and all.

How it went down:

- open rings for girls
- hear them fight over who gets the sparkly purple beads
- remind them to hold rings partially closed so that the beads they just put on the ring don't slide off
- remove chocolate lab puppy from the crafting area so purple sparkly beads don't disappear down puppy's throat and she chokes on them


Everyone's happy now. Project complete. And Mommy just happens to have two hand models who cooperate for a photo shoot. Then Spunky gives Sissy a big hug and that makes Mommy even happier.



And speaking of kids {and hugs}, may I present to you the newest addition to the collection of RULES Subway Art prints available here and here at iloveitall on Etsy.




Not finding a color that matches your kitchen or dining room decor? No worries. Just let me know and I'll add your favorite color at no extra charge! Thanks for letting me share these prints with you which were totally inspired by an Etsy customer. Thanks Stephanie.


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