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The Allison Show: January 2011

The Allison Show

All things Allison

Monday, January 31

Meet our new sponsor for Hand Made with Love

Studioahimsa specializes in stationery and (limited edition) prints. Linocut is their specialty. They love creating paper goods w/ 100% post-consumer recycled paper

All jewelry and paintings are now on http://twobearsoneheart.etsy.com

Inspired by Canadian and other landscape, animals, and nature generally, we strive to respect all living things. Based in Vancouver, Canada, studioahimsa is the joint creative venture of Tazim and Greg. 

All envelopes, paper and cards in our greeting cards and letter sets are 100% post-consumer recycled! 

What is your educational and/or artistic background?
We both have a background in Art History. Greg has a background in graphic design and Tazim has a background in interior design.

What are your hobbies?
We enjoy travelling, hiking, reading, watching movies and creating. 

Where are you from? 
We both grew up in Calgary, Alberta Canada but have lived elsewhere, as well. 

What was the main inspiration for your shop? 
Canadian and other landscape and Canadian wildlife.

What do you make?
We make letter sets, greeting cards, lino and other prints, gift tags, plus necklaces.

What materials do you use? 
For paper goods, we use 100% post-consumer recycled paper sourced locally. Our gift tags are made with recycled and reclaimed materieals and each one is unique. We use non-toxic inks that are archival quality.

 Go like them them and thank them for the giveaway!!!
 
They can be found here:
Blog - http://www.beingtazim.com
Facebook Page - http://www.facebook.com/studioahimsaTwitter
@studioahimsa


They are giving away a $35 electronic GC to their Etsy store.

Happy Birthday!!!!

Photobucket

 To me!!!!!  Photobucket   I turn 29 on Monday, January 31st.  So to celebrate, Photobucket  I will be doing a week long giveaway extravaganza!! You can win stuff for you, the kids, and maybe I'll even throw in a surprise or two.

Photobucket

Giveaways:
** $50 GC Just Paper Roses {this one is more for Valentine's Day but I always get Valentine's Day gifts for my birthday since they are so close so I added it. }
** Thirty One Insulated Tote
** Chalkboard Tee
** SHMILY Coins
** 2 Jumbies

The first present goes to...

Happy Birthday to me!!!  The first present {a Thirty One Tote} goes to Melissa N!!!  She said, "follow you on FB."   She has been emailed and has 48 to respond. 

Friday, January 28

Jumbies Review and Giveaway

I first saw Jumbies a couple of weeks ago in an auction to benefit Coupon Mom of 2 (3)'s daughter who was recently diagnosed with stage 4 cancer.  I thought they were so cute so I showed the kids the pictures of them.  Not once or twice but once  a day.  LOL  So when I got received the opportunity to review them, I knew the kids would be so excited!!!!!!!!!!!

  In case you don't know what I am talking about here is their story.  "There were more babies being born than ever before. The storks had to deliver them from shore to shore. There were baby elephants, bears, dogs, and cats. They had tigers, skunks and even baby bats! You could also find raccoons, deer, mice and whales. There were camels, sharks and dinosaurs with long tails. There were koalas, kangaroos and chimpanzees. The storks had all kinds of fish and even bumblebees! They had to deliver them in the north, south, east and west. 

There was so much to do they had little time for rest. They flew to America, Europe, Antarctica and down under. They went to Africa and Asia trying not to blunder. There was not a place on earth where the storks did not fly. Everywhere in the world the storks filled up the sky. They had to move real fast for there was no time to be slow.  

It began to get very confusing on where they had to go. Some storks turned left when they should have turned right. Some storks flew all day when they should have flown at night. Other storks flew east when they should have gone west. Everything went wrong even though they were trying their best. Then in began to happen in a flash! One by one they started to CRASH!!!

The storks smashed right into each other. It kept happening one after the other. They crashed in the clouds up in the air. There were stork feathers everywhere! They landed in the water, the trees and in the dirt. It was a miracle that none of the storks were hurt.
Then they quickly went to see if the babies were okay. The babies were fine but the storks did not know what to say. When the storks crashed and tumbled, it appeared all the animal babies were jumbled! The storks could not believe their eyes. These babies were quite a surprise. They still looked very lovable and sweet. But they were very different from their head to their feet

There were no more zebras or elephants. But they found lots and lots of Zelephants! They looked for giraffes and buffaloes. But the storks only found Giraffaloes! These jumbled babies became a new breed. So they called them JUMBiES the storks agreed."  The kids love this story and make me read it to them over and over (and over and over LOL).

Here are the 2 Jumbies we got and some info about them.




 


I was going to decide who got the Jumbies by which ones we were sent.  All the kids had 2-3 that were their favorite.  BUT when I opened the box the only kid home was Cody so after he claimed both as his own, I figured that was ok since the big kids were at the movies and he had to stay home with me.


Aren't they so cute??  They are a little bigger then Beanie Babies.  But toys that size are a favorite by all my kids.  They love to grab 10 and carry them around.  Mason calls them his babies. 


Since all the kids LOVE Jumbies and we only have 2, I definitely know what the kids will be getting for their upcoming birthdays!!  {Blake is 10 in Feb, Jacob is 5 in March, Kayla is 8 in April and Mason is 2 in June.}  And at $7.95  I can buy them 2 or 3 and not break the bank!!!

Also on the site you can print out coloring pages and play games.  So fun!!!! 


Would you like to win 2 of your very own??

How To Enter:

Mandatory Entry:
* Like Jumbies on Facebook thank them for the giveaway!!  And your email address so I can notify you if you win.  

Extra Entries: 
* Follow me on GFC, Networked Blogs, Twitter, or Facebook (Leave a separate comment for each one and your user name) 
*Check out Jumbie Land and leave a comment on which 2 are your favorite.
* Post my button on your blog (Leave 3 comments and link so I can find it.) 
*Blog about the giveaway (Leave 5 comments and the link)
* Tweet about the giveaway (Make sure to tag me @how_many_kids) Leave one comment per day


Good Luck!!   Hurry and enter this giveaway ends 2/2/11 at midnight!!!!!


***Disclaimer: I received this product free in exchange for my honest opinion and review.***



Thursday, January 27

SHMILY Review and Giveaway

I bet you are thinking what the heck does SHMILY mean?  

See
      How
            Much
                     I
                      Love
                              You.

Here is the SHMILY story "My grandparents were married for over half a century, and played their own special game from the time they had met each other. The goal of their game was to write the word "SHMILY" in a surprise place for the other to find. 

At one point, my grandmother even unrolled an entire roll of toilet paper to leave "SHMILY" on the very last sheet. There was no end to the places "SHMILY" would pop up. Little notes with "SHMILY" scribbled hurriedly were found on dashboards and car seats, or taped to steering wheels. The notes were stuffed inside shoes and left under pillows. "SHMILY" was written in the dust upon the mantel and traced in the ashes of the fireplace.  

But there was a dark cloud in my grandparents' life: my grandmother had breast cancer. The disease had first appeared 10 years earlier. As always, Grandpa was with her every step of the way. He comforted her in their yellow room, painted that color so she could always be surrounded by sunshine, even when she was too sick to go outside. Now the cancer was once again attacking her body. With the help of a cane and my grandfather's steady hand, they still went to church every Sunday morning. But my grandmother grew steadily weaker until, finally, she could not leave the house anymore.
     
For a while, Grandpa would go to church alone, praying to God to watch over his wife. Then one day, what we all dreaded finally happened. Grandma was gone. "SHMILY." It was scrawled in yellow on the pink ribbons of my grandmother's funeral bouquet."   by Laura Hammond

After reading the SHMILY story, I was inspired to create a fun token to exchange back and forth with my wife in creative and unexpected places as a playful way to show how much we love each other. The SHMILY coin has become a token we treasure and we are happy to share them with others. We have enjoyed finding fun places to hide and surprise each other. After talking with the author of the SHMILY story, she agreed to let others enjoy the delight of sharing these loving wooden SHMILY coins too!  by Scott Ertl

I was so excited when I heard about SHMILY Coins.  I love having cute little things to leave for my Hubby and kids.  I always write my Hubby notes and leave them for him to find. {When I won the Dymo Label Maker last month I made a label that said I Love You with a heart and stuck it inside Hubby's wallet.}

I put them in the kids' lunches so they could see them when they eat their lunch.  I used to write little notes and stick them in but Jake is at school now but can't read but he knows that SHMILY {he knows his letters by sight} means See How Much I Love You.

These would make such a cute and really thoughtful gift for Valentine's Day for that special someone.  I think they would make AWESOME ways to do a Proposal scavenger hunt.  You give your girlfriend {since mostly boys propose to their girlfriends but it could work the other way too} clues and have her find 10 coins and then tell her there is one more but instead of another coin it would be the ring.  AAAAWWWWW!!!!  Could you imagine??  And that would totally start your marriage into playing the hide the coins for each other.

Thanks to Scott, one lucky reader will get 10 SHMILY coins to hide with their family!!

How To Enter:

Mandatory Entry:
*Check out SHMILY Coins leave a comment on how you will use the coins and your email address so I can notify you if you win.  

Extra Entries: 
* Follow me on GFC, Networked Blogs, Twitter, or Facebook (Leave a separate comment for each one and your user name)
* Follow SHMILY Coins on Facebook
* Post my button on your blog (Leave 3 comments and link so I can find it.) 
*Blog about the giveaway (Leave 5 comments and the link)
* Tweet about the giveaway (Make sure to tag me @how_many_kids) Leave one comment per day

 This giveaway ends 2/1 at 12 midnight!! Hurry and Good Luck!!!!

***Disclaimer: I received this product for free in exchange for my honest opinion and review.***

Wednesday, January 26

Chalkboard Tee Review and Giveaway!


Jacob is totally into clothes.  Even though he is only almost 5, he picks out what he wears everyday.  He has tons of shirts and he is always changing his mind on which one is his favorite.  That is until we received the Chalkboard Tee!!!!!!!!

Chalkboard Tees are shirts that actually have an area where you can draw with chalk on.  The chalkboard part is not thick or heavy.  It is just like a regular silk screen design would be.

Jake is very sensitive to tags and certain material so I was kind of worried that the chalkboard would bother him but it didn't bother him at all.   He loves it.  He knows how to write his name so he loves to write it on his "tie".  LOL The black tag on the bottom left is actually a CHALK holder.  How cool is that???


Chalkboard Tees sell for $25 on their website.  

One lucky reader will their very own Chalkboard Tee!!!  Sponsored by Tomoson.com
Open to both US and Canadian residents.

How To Enter:

Mandatory Entry:
*Head over to Chalkboard Tees and leave a comment with your favorite print and your email address so I can notify you if you win.  

Extra Entries: 
* Follow me on GFC, Networked Blogs, Twitter, or Facebook (Leave a separate comment for each one and your user name)
* Follow Chalkboard Tee on Facebook
* Follow Chalkboard Tee on Twitter
* Post my button on your blog (Leave 3 comments and link so I can find it.) 
*Blog about the giveaway (Leave 5 comments and the link)
* Tweet about the giveaway (Make sure to tag me @how_many_kids) Leave one comment per day
This giveaway ends 1/31 at 12 midnight!! Hurry and Good Luck!!!!  



***Disclaimer: I received this product free in exchange for my honest opinion and review.***
 I received one or more of the products mentioned above for free using Tomoson.com. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will be good for my readers. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commissions 16 CFR, Part 255 Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising. Tomoson Product review & giveaway Disclosure.

Tuesday, January 25

Thirty One Tote Review and Giveaway!!

Have you heard of Thirty One Gifts?  I had but really had never looked through the catalog or given it too much thought.  I knew they did purses and bags, and that they offered personalization through embroidery when you bought something.   When Charlene Richards contacted me about doing a review/giveaway I was so excited!! The first thing I did was read through her whole site so that I could learn ore about this company.

Here is the back story on Thirty One.  "Our mission is to celebrate, encourage and reward women through offering quality products and an outstanding opportunity to become successful business owners. We have seen this mission played out across the years in the individual lives of so many women who now have their own “Thirty-One Story”.

Our products are exclusive to Thirty-One and provide style and convenience at an amazingly affordable price. From our key product line, to our “direction” line for teens, or our uniquely crafted “31kid” line for children and moms, you will find so many options to fit every personality type and every situation. We continue to develop new products built on the idea that our products must be stylish, functional, affordable and easy to give as gifts to encourage someone special.  Six years later, our Thirty-One family has grown to nearly 10,000 consultants nationwide."

So after I read all that I went shopping!!  They have some really cool stuff.  They offer things for organizing the house, storage solution, and bags for travel.  Plus the purses and totes I already knew about.  They also sell insulated lunch totes!!  Those are great since my kids are always eating and when we are out and about I can throw snacks for 3-5 kids (depending on whose with me) in and they look stylish and keep food cold.

They offer 2 sizes in the insulated tote: small thermal tote (3085) or thermal tote (3000).  They are available in a wide variety of prints and colors so that everyone can find something that they like.  Since I am opening my own bakery and part of our branding is multi-colored polka dots, I had to go with the Circle Spirals print.  I got "Crazy Cupcake" embroidered on it in lime green thread.  IT IS SO CUTE!!!!  I love it!!!!!!!!!!!!


And thanks to Charlene one lucky reader will get their choice of the small tote or the regular tote with a monogram!!

How To Enter:
{Open to US Residents only.  Sorry!!}

*Mandatory Entry:
Head over to Thirty One and leave a comment with your favorite print and your email address so I can notify you if you win.  

Extra Entries: 
* Follow me on GFC, Networked Blogs, Twitter, or Facebook (Leave a separate comment for each one and your user name)
* Follow Charlene's Thirty One  Page on Facebook
* Post my button on your blog (Leave 3 comments) 
*Blog about the giveaway (Leave 5 comments)
* Tweet about the giveaway (Make sure to tag me @how_many_kids) Leave one comment per day
This giveaway ends 1/30 at 12 midnight!! Hurry and Good Luck!!!! 



***Disclaimer: I received this product free in exchange for my honest opinion and review.***

Monday, January 24

Just in time for Valentine's Day.


Want to give your Hunny something unique and different this Valentine's Day??  Then you have to check out Just Paper Roses.  They actually have tons more stuff than just Valentine's Day Gifts.  They have gifts for birthdays, anniversaries, holidays, Sweet 16, and even gifts for him. 

One of my favorite Valentine's Gifts of theirs is the toilet paper!!  We received a roll and Hubby and the kids could not stop laughing.  It says I love you from top to bottom!!  The toilet paper itself is nice and thick like the Super Thick brands.

They also have a great selection of anniversary gifts.  Hubby and I were married 10 years on Dec 26 and we got a super cute aluminum rose.  Why aluminum you ask??  Why that's the 10 year gift material.  I had joked that I was going to buy him a can of soda!!  This was much better!!

Just Paper Roses will make any holiday or celebration more fun and the recipient feel more special and loved.

Do you want to feel more special and loved?  Would winning a $50 GC do it for you??


How To Enter:
{Open to US and Canadian Residents}

*Mandatory Entry:
Head over to Just Paper Roses and leave a comment with on how you will spend your GC and your email address so I can notify you if you win.  

Extra Entries: 
* Follow me on GFC, Networked Blogs, Twitter, or Facebook (Leave a separate comment for each one and your user name)
* Follow Just Paper Roses on Facebook
* Post my button on your blog (Leave 3 comments) 
*Blog about the giveaway (Leave 5 comments)
* Tweet about the giveaway (Make sure to tag me @how_many_kids) Leave one comment per day


This giveaway ends 1/31 at 12 midnight!! Hurry and Good Luck!!!! 



***Disclaimer: I received this product free in exchange for my honest opinion and review.***

Sunday, January 16

New Author to check out!! Leslie Tentler

 Growing up, Leslie Tentler had a big imagination and a gift for writing. As an adult, the Gwinnett County resident now has a three-book deal with MIRA Books. MIDNIGHT CALLER, her debut mass-market romantic suspense novel, will be available February 1, 2011, through online booksellers and bookstores everywhere.
 
MIDNIGHT CALLER is the first in a series of romantic thrillers penned by Tentler and based around a fictional unit of the FBI. Two additional books in the Chasing Evil trilogy will be released in 2011 and 2012, respectively. 
 
Prior to signing with MIRA, Tentler worked as a writer and editor in public relations in metro Atlanta for nearly two decades, specializing in high technology and non-profit healthcare clients. Her first fiction manuscript won multiple Romance Writers of America chapter contests, including Georgia Romance Writers’ prestigious Maggie Award of Excellence.
 
MIDNIGHT CALLER centers on the chilling obsession of a sadistic killer, the handsome federal agent with a secret past who’s after him – and in the middle, a late-night radio psychologist whose mother’s long-ago murder still haunts her and makes her the killer’s ultimate target. The story is based in New Orleans .
 
“I’m thrilled to be writing for MIRA Books,” said Tentler from her Lawrenceville home. “It’s the opportunity of a lifetime to be a debut novelist and to be able to immerse myself in the creative aspect of storytelling. At the heart of any good romantic suspense are characters you care about and fast-paced plots imbued with a very real element of danger and passion. I hope readers will go along for the ride with me and come to love these characters as much as I do.”

Get this new book before it hits store shelves – available for ordering now at Amazon
  
 Visit Leslie’s website at www.leslietentler.com.

And make sure to visit her Facebook page and enter the awesome giveaway she has going on.  All you have to do is like her FB page and she will pick one "Liker" per week between now and Feb 5th.  The lucky person will win an autographed copy of her debut novel and a $25 E-GC to amazon.

Check back next week for my review of her new book!!

Tuesday, January 11

New Sponsor: For My Sweet Daughter


Shannon at For My Sweet Daughter is my newest sponsor for the Hand Made with Giveaway event.  Remember it takes place Feb 2-6.  Here is some info about her {in her own words!!}

I am a wife of 10 years (this July) and a mother to a smart and beautiful 18 month old daughter. I started making jewelry because I needed a creative outlet. I have always crafted and needed something portable and creative to help me unwind at the end of the day. I went to a handmade jewelry party at a friend's house and thought "I can do this" I never intended to make it a business but I couldn't keep everything so I started selling my pieces at the salon I do nails at.

While I was pregnant I was very sick so I couldn't make jewelry or even read a book. I missed it very much and as soon as I could I took my beads out of storage and jumped back into creating with both feet. I started My Blog in 2010 and opened an etsy and zibbet store. I also held my first jewelry party at a client's home. I am looking forward to great things for both my business and my family in 2011.

She is giving away her Dew Drops Necklace created with hand wire wrapped Swarovski crystal pearls and Vintaj natural brass chain and clasp.


How gorgeous is that necklace??  I wish I could win it!!  You should definitely check out her Etsy shop and her Facebook page.  Don't forget to follow her blog and like her on FB for extra entries into the Hand Made with Love Event.  And make sure to thank her for her beautiful contribution to our giveaway prize pack!!



Monday, January 10

My 2011 is off to a great start!!!!!!!!!!!

As most of you know I am opening a Cupcake Bakery The Crazy Cupcake in the next couple of weeks.  Back in Dec we were interviewed for our local paper The Herald & Tribune.  New cupcakery to satisfy more than just a sweet tooth.  Well today we had our second interview with The Johnson City Press!!!  We were interviewed for an in newspaper magazine called For Her.  They have a column called I'll Have what She's Having where they go to different restaurants and bakeries and try their desserts.  So we had to make cupcakes so they could sample them.  This newspaper is also bigger than the Herald Tribune so I hope it really helps to get our name out there!!

They sent out a photographer to take pictures of the 5 kind of cupcakes I made.  The article comes out the end of Feb!!  I am so excited I can't wait to open!!!! We are waiting on a few things and then we will be all set.  Unfortunately we have gotten TONS of snow since last Wednesday so that is making it hard to get things done. By kids had Thursday, Friday, today, and tomorrow off for snow days.  That makes 11 already this year.  The school district builds in 13 for the whole year so I bet the kids will have to either go to Satrday school or have the school year extended.

Here are pictures of the cupcakes I made today.

Chocolate cake with a caramel buttercream and a semi sweet chocolate heart



Chocolate Coffee cake with a chocolate coffee buttercream.




Our Cinnamonster!! Cinnamon cake with cinnamon chips topped with a cinnamon sugar topping and covered in vanilla glaze.  Just like a cinnamon roll only in cupcake form.




The Kayla named after our daughter who created them.  Vanilla bean cake with peanut butter chips and frosted with a peanut butter buttercream.




Vanilla Bean cake with a chocolate buttercream frosting.

Sunday, January 9

New Sponsor: The Knit Wit by Shair!!

Shari is my newest sponsor for the Hand Made with Giveaway event.  Remember it takes place Feb 2-6.  Here is some info about her {in her own words!!}

I am a wife of 8 years to a wonderful hubby, and mother of 3 boys aged 4, 2, and 10 months (will be 1 March 2nd), and servant to 2 male cats. Yes, I am the lone rep of the female gender in my house.

I started knitting at the age of 12 when I was taught in Crusaders (think boy scouts for Christian boys and girls offered through the church). I never really did a lot with it, but would pick up the needles all the time. When I got married I started knitting more because my hubby would be doing fix-it projects and wanted me to come talk with him. So I would take my knitting. I started selling it because 7 years of his projects has produced a lot of items sitting in my house.

She has some super cute stuff in her etsy shop The Knit Wit by Shair.  She has hats, baby blankets, coffee cozy, headbands, and doll blankets.  Here is some of my favorite pictures!!









You can follow her blog at The Knit Wit by Shair.  She has generously given my winner their choice of any hat on her site!!!

Wanna get a head start on the giveaway? One extra entry will be to follow her on Facebook or add  The Knit Wit Etsy Shop as your favorite shop.  Go leave her some love and be sure to thank her for sponsoring our Hand Made with Love Giveaway!!

Thursday, January 6

Book Review: Walk Like You Have Somewhere to Go

Title: Walk Like You Have Somewhere to Go
Author: Lucille O'Neal and Allison Samuels
Publisher:  Thomas Nelson
Published: March 30, 2010
ISBN: 159555307X

Summary: "Lucille O’Neal shares her public battles and personal struggles as a young, single mother of NBA legend Shaquille O’Neal.
Lucille O’Neal would one day have it all, but not before fighting the public battles and personal demons that would threaten to shatter the very foundation of her life while taking their devastating toll along the way.

Over the past 16 years, Lucille O’Neal has become one of the best-known mothers of a celebrity athlete. But behind the scenes, the mother of four has her own story, at once heartbreakingly familiar in its pain and yet wonderfully inspirational in its outcome.

In this memoir, O’Neal candidly describes the pain of being an outcast and the stigma of becoming an unwed, teenage mother. Most interestingly, she candidly shares another side of fame and fortune—a side rarely revealed or admitted in public: her unexpected feelings of anger and resentment towards her son’s blinding success."

This is one of the first autobiographies I have read {maybe I read one as a child but I don't remember} and was really interesting.

O'Neal had her famous son when she was just 17.  She had already endured a lot and had a hard life.  Unfortunately her life doesn't get any easier.  This is the story of her life and how she overcame the obstacles and managed to get to a better place {mentally and spiritually}.

I love the true to life way this book is written and the feeling with which she writes.  But i don't like the attitude it seems she has about her life.  It is almost like she became an alcoholic because of life not because of choices she made.  There are plenty of people who had horrible upbringings and they manage to deal with it and not resort to alcoholism.  I am glad that she has managed to over come it and is peace with her life and her sons' success.

I think this is a good book for people who like autobiographies or sports junkies who wonder how these athletes managed to make it big.

*I received a review copy of this book from Thomas Nelson in exchange for an honest review of the book* 

Will You Help Me PLEASE!!!

You might have seen my post on Monday about the I Heart Faces weekly contest.  Well it was decided that the winner will be picked by votes.  So I was wondering if you would help me out and vote for Cody of you think he has the Face of 2010!!  All you have to do is visit I Heart Faces and vote by clicking on the photo you like.  You can vote up to 5 times (for different photos).  We are number 40 so please go vote!!!  Thanks!!!!!!!!

Monday, January 3

Kissy Face!!

I Heart Faces does weekly photo contests and each one has a theme.  I did one of their weekly contests way back in like Spring 2010 but when I saw the theme this week I knew I had to do one again.  I cannot resist this kissy face!!  He didn't even know I was taking pictures of him when he did it.




There are already tons of AMAZING photos posted so you should go check them out!!



Sunday, January 2

Good Bye 2010, Hello 201 1

On this second day of the new year, I decided that I wanted to write down my resolutions and goals and plans for 2011. Normally I am not that into resolutions or writing my plans and goals but this year I have so much that I want to accomplish and I have a set deadline in sight.  I turn 30 on Jan 31, 2012.  In just over a year!!  I have a kind of mindset about where I should be and what I should have accomplished by this HUGE (in significance) age. So I want to make sure that I am exactly where I want to be (in life and physically) when I celebrate the big 3-0.
{In no particular order}

~~ Start (and almost more importantly complete) a 365 photo project.  I decided that since we are opening The Crazy Cupcake in Jan 2011, I would concentrate my 365 project on cupcakes.  But then {on second thought} when I think ahead to say tomorrow and the knowledge that I probably won't make any cupcakes, I realize that I will be able to get creative with my project.  Maybe I could shoot baking supplies, the shop, empty cupcake liners, etc.  You can check out my project at http://365project.org/thecrazycupcake/365

~~ Make my shop a HUGE success!! This one is less a resolution and more of a business plan but I want to write it down anyway.  By July, I want to have the $11,000 to invest in a range hood/ fire suppression system so we can buy a range.  By Dec, I want to at least be in the beginning stages of opening a second location.

~~ I want to graduate with my BA in English!!  I am 7-10 classes away from that degree and I couldn't be more excited!!  This is one of the major goals I want done by my 30th birthday.

~~ Finally lose the 25-30 pounds of "baby weight" that I have had for the last 10 years.  I am going to make a plan so that I can accomplish this.  I am going to keep track of what I eat a day with the intent of  eating1600 calories a day.  I want to work out 5-6 days a week.  I will either do the Wii Fit or take at least a 35 minute walk.

~~ Get Mason potty trained so that for the first time in 10 years {well except for about 5 months when I was pregnant with Jacob} I will have 0 ~ZERO~ NO kids in diapers!!!!  WooHoo!!!!

~~ I want to make concrete plans and start saving so that Hubby and I {and all my friends/ relatives} can go to Vegas for a few days for my 30th birthday.   I'm already working on getting my mom to watch the kids while we are gone.  I have told my BF and she is in. So I just need to start saving (I could use the money previously used to buy diapers!!) and make plans about where I want to stay and when exactly we are going to go.

~~ For this blog I would like to get 1000 followers on GFC, Facebook, and Twitter.  Right now I have:
GFC: 653
Facebook: 427
Twitter: 512

My super goal would be to get to 1200.  I am going to do this by taking part in giveaway events like Hand Made with Love in Feb and also doing BlogFest again.  I am also going to start posting giveaways on more sites so that I get my name out there and move up from a Google Page Rank of 1 to a 2 (at least).  I also want to get my average monthly page views up to 3000 a month.

That's about all I can think of but I will keep you updated as 2011 progresses!!  What are some of your resolutions?? (Or leave me a link to a similar post you wrote!!)  Thanks for the great 2010 and thanks in advanced to an even greater 2011!!!!!!!

Saturday, January 1

Winner, Winner, Winner!!!

Happy New Year!!  What better way to start the new year than as a winner of an awesome giveaway. 

The winner of my Ready Leash giveaway is #32 Kelly Ann!!  She said, "12/28 tweet http://twitter.com/cstironkat/status/19777560174919680." 

The winner of my Roundabouts Cupcake Sleeves is #57 Adriane!!  She said, "I like the Ice Cream Cone kit!"

The winner of the book The Witchy Worries of Abbie Adams is # 17 Robin.  She said, "I follow you on facebook."





All 3 winner have been emailed and have 72 hours to respond or random.org will choose new winners.  Thanks to everyone who entered and Happy New Year!!!