the shop: 4 new templates

even though last week was big and busy, i still found time to sit down at night, and play around with some new designs for my Etsy shop. just wanted to show them to ya today! hope you like, and as always, feedback on them is awesome help for me! :)



i hope you have a safe and very happy new year!! see ya on the flip side...

showing off: 3 new designs

well December flew by, huh?!

our little family had SUCH a fun holiday week, and i am still drinking candy cane hot cocoa each night after i put Bronx in bed. i'm trying to hold onto every last bit of that magical/cozy "holiday" feeling i can! that being said, i did pack up alllllll of my Christmas decor Saturday afternoon, and holy mother it was a process. partly because i did it with B awake (my bad. i didn't realize he'd want to snatch and run off with every.single.thing. within reach! haha), and partly because i decided to reorganize ALL my Halloween and Thanksgiving decor as well. plus do some serious deep cleaning (3 bathrooms/toilets anyone?) I think I had a perma braxton-hick(s)? going on because of all the bending and kneeling and standing i did. it was super. but literally, i'm so happy it's done and i can focus on other projects now!

and here are some of those "other projects"/blog designs i finished before the break:

1 | 2 | 3

all beautiful and different designs, and all wonderful women to work with! I was excited about Danielle's design because it's light and playful and a photography blog...and i LOVE me a good photography blog. I loved working on Sheena's design because of the patterns and colors she chose (after my own heart). Jenny approached me with some custom design questions for her Wordpress blog, and we pulled elements from one of my premade templates, and added some new ones as well. the best part was that she was kind enough to let me onto her site to look at the coding and figure some stuff out (dang you WordPress for being so tricky!)!

i honestly hope your holidays have been magical, and here's to making it a great week! bring on 2014!

*what was your favorite part(s) about Christmas? mine = that Bronx was old enough to kind of get what was going on, see his face go "ooo!" as he came down the stairs, and help us open presents! 

*are you looking for a new blog design? if so, click >>HERE<< to see my premade templates in the shop, or go >>HERE<< to find out more on my custom designs! :)

blog design: 3 new sites

goodmorning and happy Cyber Monday right?!

idea for image from here

i had a pretty chill holiday weekend with my two boys (okay, and Tank too..he's our little Shih-Tsu!). and even though we weren't able to head home to see immediate family, we were able to spend some time with extended family. they were so nice to invite us!

the main reason i am here today, is because i want to show you 3 of the blogs i've worked on lately. i truly have lucked out because each of these ladies has been so nice and patient with me. i love working with nice people! :)

CHECK EM OUT: 
1 | 2 | 3

these three templates are all so different - i love that about working with you! i absolutely love seeing the different styles and passions people have, and i enjoy being pushed to figure out what you love and want to see in your design. ...and did you notice this site got a little facelift too? i couldn't help myself. an idea popped into my head this weekend and stayed there until i sat down and designed it out (ahh, so nerdy!). i feel this look is much more sleek and up to date and me! i also redesigned my other site to match, which i think is best. i hope you love it!

*do have some serious online shopping to do today? i do! last year, i scored almost all of K's  and B's Christmas gifts this day, and i hope to do the same today!

*do you prefer shopping online or in the store? usually i would say IN STORE! but it is soooo much easier to shop online with Bronx now. haha. clothes are always tricky though. i always prefer to go to the store for those, unless i know the size/fit of the store online. 

christmas card templates

since being married, i have never - with the exception of last year - been good about getting out a family Christmas card to friends and family. sure i've wanted too, but honestly? i was lazy. i would put it off until finally it was too late. please tell me you are like this too? i'm not the only one? well, over the past month i've had a few different people ask me if i made Christmas card templates. i haven't ever...so by golly i decided i better make some, and i placed them in the shop over the weekend! take a peek:


and there are more! so head on over >>HERE!<< if you need a holiday card to match that cute family picture of yours. i really hope you find one you love!

and once again, all beautiful photography images taken by SimplySuzyPhotography << you best be lookin' her up if you live around the SLC, UT area!

*are you good or bad about sending out greeting cards? me=bad. definitely bad. however, i LOVE receiving them, and reading them, and looking at the pictures!

friday favorites + freebie!

you heard that right. let's start with the freebie shall we?

{for personal use only please!}

my craze right now is chalkboard art. i can't get enough of it. and with this tutorial you can make it even more personal (seriously, go check it out if you have Photoshop. and ps: you'll love all her other cute stuff and tutorials, she is the bomb)!

you can download below:
(remember these are for personal use only! all i ask is that if you like my stuff and download, that you follow me on Bloglovin' or like me on Facebook, because you know, i guess i look more legit if i have big numbers or something...hah. if you'd like a commercial license simply email me and we'll talk!)




and now on to other fun business:


1 • remember how i got these cute nail polishes at Forever21 last weekend?


well, right before i snatched those up, i was in line staring at some lotion bottles. then i opened one and smelled it. and ooohhhh it was the greatest smell ever. so i picked 2 (and will probably go back for the others...).



apricot and grapefruit. you guys. please just do me a favor and stop in to smell these when you're at the mall next. you won't regret it unless you are deathly allergic to these scents or something crazy (and in that case go eat a Cinnabon for me instead).

2 • speaking of cinnamon rolls, i was craving them Sunday. so i made some.


i found the recipe on a friend's fb page, originally from How to Be a Woman:


{pssst! my batch made 28, and they were still GIANT cinnamon rolls. and for some weird reason i don't like eating cinnamon rolls after 24 hours. so needless to say, a whole bunch went with K to his work, and next time I make these i will be halfing half-ing have-ing...i will be cutting the recipe in half. hah. }

3 • raspy whit. i don't even remember how in the heck i found her blog, but i'm so so happy i did!
Raspy Wit

please go follow her and get your dose of humor for the day. some of my favorite posts are: my husband the hobo, things that don't belong on facebook, and whitney's gym dress code. the list really goes on, so just go check her out now mmk?

4 • this white Christmas tree:


ever since i saw this post i've always wanted to have a "candyland" tree like hers. so this is a start. haha. i had been eyeing it forever (okay, like a week), and when B and i were at the store Wednesday, i bought it. i am in love with it, and so is B. every single time he sees it, he points and goes "oooo!".  mine's a little bare now, but hopefully i'll get to add some more fun "bling" to it here and there before Christmas comes!

5 • these adorable little 2014 calendars by Gingiber. i'm not a huge fan of small calendars because i like to write my whole life's plan and schedule into each day. but her graphics are so stinking cute i might need to grab one to put up here by my desk! i'm loving the fox one and the owl one!


{images via here & here}


*what is your favorite thing about today?

*do you have a Christmas tree up already, too? i usually don't until after Thanksgiving....that obviously didn't happen this year.

nails: gold + peach

i used to hate the color gold. like, hate hate it. i thought it was old and grandma-y, and too fancy. but thanks to Pinterest, and the zillion fashion bloggers out there who style it so wonderfully, i've come to love me a touch of gold bling. and i especially love it on my nails around this time of year.


colors of choice:
• NYC: Long Wearing Nail Enamel, Extra Shiny Top Coat, #271
• Forever21: Gold
• Forever21: Peachy Cheeks

i had to exchange a shirt at Forever21 over the weekend, and while i was at the counter i saw these two beauties and snatched them right up. why did they have to be so tempting? haha, but really i'm glad i did because i love a good gold polish. and just fyi: the other polish (peachy cheeks) is a lot more of a peachy/coral color...not so pink like it looks in the pic!

here's what i did:


oops. it looks like i have 3 different skin tones! ha. anyways, pretty self-explanatory, but here are the deets:

1. i threw a basic white coat on as a base to bring out the gold, and put two coats of gold on. let dry completely
2. cut some binder-page-ring-things(good name, right?) in half, and placed 'em on my cuticle area.
3. painted 2 coats of "Peachy Cheeks". i could have gotten away with one (love when a polish is awesome like that), but you know me and all my "i-gotta-do-two" ocd-ness. let dry completely before removing the stickers.


i used NYC Extra Shiny as my top coat. and in case you were wondering, yes, it sounds like a lot of layers, but definitely doesn't feel like it.

p.s. i could have just left my nails at step 1, because that looked really pretty too!


* are you a gold fan? 

* what color are your nails right now?

friday favorites

ahh friday. why are you so cool? in my household, it's because the hubs is home (day off) and we get to go do fun stuff. like, go to Home Depot and eat at Texas Roadhouse. anyways, i wanted to pop in and let you know how happy i am to see some new faces over here! hello!! i'm so excited to see you actually, that i'm even working on a FREEBIE! that i'll post soon, as well as show off some of the custom blog designs i've been working on lately. and talking of lately, here are some things i'm loving...

1.

i don't know why it's taken me so long to snatch up this font, but yesterday i did. and i love it. yes, it's been around for a bit (and may even be slightly overused?) but dang, isn't it fun? Bombshell, and Matchmaker are on my hit list as well if you want to check those out...and if you click >>HERE<< you can go stare at all the pretty fonts on my typography board. because isn't staring at fonts fun?! or is that just me??

2. 

K and i started watching this tv series a few weeks ago, and hello Phil and Clair Dunphy, you are like our exact replicas.

 3.

i watch Vamp Diaries (don't hate....although i am getting less and less into it...yet it is still recording on our dvr...), and this new series Reign comes on right after. so after watching the first 2 minutes of the first 3 episodes, i decided to record that too. i really like it so far!

4. 
i freaking love hot chocolate. sure, the temps down here might now be as chilly as idaho, but that won't stop me from busting out a mug or two, and getting cozy while watching my shows at night! my favorites right now (hot chocolate, silly, you already know my shows!) are Stephen's Candy Cane Cocoa and Kandee Johnson's homemade recipe for Candy Cane White Hot Chocolate!

5.
we went to the doc yesterday and found out. i am terrified and thrilled all at the same time! haha, terrified because i know how i was/am, and i am already dreading the teen years...and thrilled because i get to buy girl clothes, and pink things, and make tutus, and do her hair, and paint her little nails...!!! the list could go on peeps.

* i would love to hear some of your favorites today! i'm serious. i really would!

* do you stare at fonts too? like for an abnormally long amount of time??

* have you watched Reign? what do you think?

* what is YOUR favorite hot chocolate recipe!?

premade blogger templates

if you didn't know, i recently opened up an Etsy shop for my premade blogger templates. i'm pretty excited about it all! i do realize it has a LONG way to go, but i'm happy to show you these 4 that i have up now:


you can also find links to them over on my design site >>HERE<<

i have lots more in the works, and can't wait to share them with you soon!! another awesome bit of information is that i teamed up with the incredible Suzy of Simply Suzy Photography and her work is to die for. seriously. so all the lovely photographs you see on these templates are hers (ahhh, except for the mug shots of me...haha)!

now, i'd love for you to tell me:

*which is your favorite?

*if you were to buy a premade template, what would you look for and want?

*what color combos are your favorite right now? (not on my templates - just what do you love!)

5 things that might make you smile

the following are incidents that have happened to me over the past 2 months (basically since i've been away). as each one happened, i would think: okay, i need to remember this so i'm not the only person laughing and feeling stupid alone. ha. so maybe you can relate? i'll just dive right in.

1. forgetting to take my glasses off before i shower. i wear my glasses at night, and sometimes i take my shower at night. (it makes it easier for me in the mornings with Bronx...especially Sunday mornings!) anyways, i hopped in and BAM i was blinded with fog on my lens's. yep, i felt pretty cool right about then.

2. trying to spit as i run, while letting the stroller veer off course. i think the two elderly ladies ahead of me got a kick out of this one. i just leaned out to spit in the grass (cuz, you know, i feel bad spitting on the sidewalk..) and the next thing i know Bronx and his stroller are being rammed into a wild bush in the opposite direction (Oregon has a ton of these all over..). good thing he's a tough little babe. and good thing it wasn't poison oak.

3. forgetting to shave a leg. not forgetting both legs. just one. this has NEVER happened to me! i blame my pregnant brain.

4. being mistaken for a dog and getting whacked in the face. random? oh yeah. there i was peacefully falling asleep in our bed when i hear "umngrr...TANK!" and then WHACK. Kevin's hand/arm comes dive-bombing onto my face. "Oh sorry babe! i thought you were Tank!" uhhhh. you see, sometimes Tank - our little shih tsu - sleeps on our bed (i know, sorry you non-dog-lovers!), and sometimes he annoys Kevin. it didn't hurt as much as it sounds and we actually ended up laughing ourselves to sleep this night.

5. this gum:


please tell me you remember it too! the mr. saw it at a candy store in Idaho, and immediately grabbed it. no big deal that it looses flavor after 5 chews, the big prizes are definitely the tattoos inside.

*can you relate to anything here?!

*what is your favorite type of gum? i don't know if i really have one, but the hubby always buys the Extra Spearmint kind. without fail. he claims it as the best.

flip flop fantasy + some nail bling

lately, i've been going through our camera and phones and transferring about a zillion pictures to our hard drive. in the process, i came across some nails i did right before i started packing everything up - so the end of August/ beginning of September - and i seriously think this is the last time i painted them. ridiculous! i know. i know. but don't freak, because i DID paint them Saturday night while watching Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade (isn't that the best one?) with the hubby!  i just haven't had time to stop, but i definitely feel like i'm hitting a good groove now. so hopefully some fun holiday nail ideas soon?! yes please.

okay enough. the pics:


both the China Glaze polish and Trendy Nail Wraps are from Sally's. i remember running in there one day specifically looking for this polish (Flip Flop Fantasy), because i was seeing it everywhere over the summer, and it just looked so darn awesome. on my way to the check out of course i stopped and skimmed over the $1 section, and saw these little beauties (the nail wraps) so i grabbed them! 



like the Jamberry Nails (see here), they were easy to apply, but i wanted to try something different, and use a technique a friend had told me about. this is why you see nail glue in that top pic. haha, yes, i did glue the decal to my nail! it worked, so hey. i topped everything with a coat of NYC Long Wearing Nail Enamel(#271). i'm pretty much in love with this color, and i swear it could make any girl look tanner. does that sound weird? yea, but it's true! ha.

*do you have Flip Flop Fantasy?

*oh my heck it's NOVEMBER?! what's your favorite food this month? basically everything is my favorite food, but my top loves are: cinnamon rolls, apple cider or hot chocolate...you know, all those make-your-home-smell-cozy-foods!

back in action and my new site

oh heeeeey my friends! what? i was gone for too long? you thought i'd never return? nooooo. that's not like me. what in the heck have i been doing?! oh, i'll tell ya. but where to start...


...i guess a good place is that we moved!....and were homeless for about a month while we stored allllll of our stuff at my parent's house (don't worry, it was in a trailer), and went on a MUCH needed vacation. to Germany, Austria, and the Czech Republic!! it. was. insane. insanely awesome, a good eye-opening experience, and just plain fun. but dang. it sure made me happy to be an American! :)

so we moved south, and got to drive through 5 states to get here (yep, don't want to do that again!), but we are finally settled into our new home! and whew. there is NO place like home. and it's just so darn great to sleep on my own pillow again! take a looksie:


we have way too much space than we know what to do with. and i would love to personally thank whoever invented the 3 car garage. 

some other big news (like, the main big news over here)? i opened up my new design site!


 i have it linked up there in my navigation bar under "blog design". so if you click on that, you can go take see what i've been up to in between all the packing and moving and playing.

oh yea. and Bronx wants to say something too:


come April 2014. we are excited.

blog design: Carissa Miss

i'll try not to get too sad as i write this, but here my friends, is my last blog design for the summer:


Carissa pushed me to create some fun new things, and i couldn't be happier with how her design turned out! 

here's her color scheme:
we both fell in love with the gold, and i'm glad because i think it looks awesome on her site! if you'd like to go take a look yourself, go for it! you can find Carissa over here.

in other news, i'm sorry i have been mia for the past month. it feels like even though summer is already coming to a close (my sisters started school last week!...what?!), K and my vacations/adventures are just getting underway. we have a big one coming up next month, and i get to see my baby brother return from a mission to Argentina!! i seriously can't wait. i've been trying to keep my family blog updated, and keep up with my now ONE year old running (basically-he is walking now!) around the house. it's nuts. 

i want this blog to still be a place of happiness and sharing, and i don't want to be found writing "filler" posts that don't mean anything to me. so if you see me gone for a while, it's because life is happening. i am working on a site strictly for my blog design and i can't wait for you guys to see it! in the meantime, i hope to keep sharing fun crafts and designs with you here when i can! muah! peace out.

freebie: ipad wallpapers

july has always been a fun month for me with lots of BBQs, fireworks, campouts, bonfires, and swimming. and then there's my birthday at the end. today i am a quarter of a century old...i mean...young. haha (yes, Bronx and my birthday's are exactly 1 week apart! cool, huh?).

it kind of came early this year when Kevin surprised me with an ipad! we had been looking into getting one for a while, and tested out a bunch of different brands, but kept coming back to the ipad because -when it came down it it- we are familiar with it, and we have iphones. so when we were out a couple weeks ago getting Bronx's birthday presents, and saw a deal at Target where you get a $50 gift card with purchase of the ipad....Kevin turned to me and said: "You're gonna end up getting one anyways, because i was going to surprise you for your birthday...we might as well get some money back for spending so much!" hah. true that. so we snatched it up.


oh my gosh. i have been loving this baby! i have a post started on my favorite apps and features of it, which i'll have to share soon. in the mean time, what is the first thing i wanted to do with it when i opened it? create some cute wallpapers of course! so here is my gift to you today:

you might remember seeing that fun aztec background on my sister's blog design here. i loved it so much that i wanted it for my ipad wallpaper, and so i fixed and adjusted it to fit right for the ipad. and as you can see, i have the "oh hey there" set as my lock screen. these are simple, but were so fun to whip up. i'll definitely be sharing more with you in the future! as for now, here's 5 you can download and use yourself:



enjoy!

details: 2048x2048px, 300dpi

*which one is your favorite?

*it's FRIDAY! are you doing anything fun today/this evening?!
the birthday person always gets to choose where we go out for dinner, and since i LOVE breakfast for dinner, i am probably going to choose IHOP! 

blog design: Megan Hauze Photo.

i am slowly finishing up a few last custom blog designs, and am sad that i will be taking a little break from doing this because i love it so much (however, i do hope to rock your socks off when i am open for business again, so stay tuned)!

there is something so fun about designing for a photographer. maybe it's because they prefer a clean template, and i do too? or the fact that i love seeing my design next to their stunning photographs? whatever the reason, when Megan contacted me for a blog design, i was thrilled to help her out! and i was just thinking we should have taken a before and after of her site, because you would not believe the transformation that happened! here's a look at the header area:



the color scheme:
creating these blog designs, i think it's cool to see how similar color schemes can be or start out, yet the results for each end up so different and unique! here's a footer screenshot:


Megan is a photographer in the Bountiful, Utah area. if you are thinking about capturing some of those precious memories (especially of your wee ones), then check her out! her photos are fabulous! just take a peek at this cute little session she just did!

head on over and take a closer look at Megan's site here

blog design: Sending Love, From Me

i love to help a sister out. and today, i literally mean sister, because the blog design i'm sharing is extra special to me because...it's my little sissy's! although, i really can't say "little" anymore because she's a new college freshman, but for some reason she is engraved in my mind as being 11. the age she was when i graduated high school, and left for college myself :)

Elise decided to start up her own blog because she wanted to keep her friends and family updated on all her crazy new adventures away from home (and maybe because i told her i wanted to design her a site!hah). She wanted it clean but fun, and that's just what we did. take a look:


her color scheme:
i am really digging the whole aztec feel (and if you've been following me on Pinterest, you're probably sick of seeing the millions of iphone cases with this type of print, sorry! i am totally going to buy one as soon as my phone is upgraded this fall!). moving on :) here's a look at her post footer elements and signature:


she won't let me "design" her hair, but i can design her blog....i can deal with that! haha. love you Elise!

................................

in other random news, my baby turns ONE tomorrow! aahhhhhhhh!!! and i am sooooo not okay with it (or ready?). so today = me running around like a maniac trying to get stuff together for his special day. 

* what do you think of this design?

** in general, what blog designs are your favorite and why?

blog design: One Great Adventure

Megan is one of those girls i love. i love how honest and real she is. it's girls like her that make designing such a pleasure. i don't even know why i'm telling you this, except that i want you to know that she is great...and i guess i wanted you to know that i have never been one for "making friends" online (i know, are you kidding me audrey?), but i definitely consider Meg a friend! okay, enough talk. here's how her design turned out:

i loved that she wanted a vintage/country feel. something light and pretty. here's a quick look at some of the footer elements:

i know i say it every time (and i will probably keep saying it because i mean it!), but my screenshots don't do justice. so go check it out up close and in person.... er, you know what i mean :)

head on over to Meg's site >>here<< and say hi for me!

nail art: Jamberry Nails

so you want to learn about Jamberry nails do ya? well then, read on friends. i am dang excited to tell you all about them! 


(if not, that's okay. but you should still click on, and at least look at all the pretty pictures i slaved over for you in photoshop...bahaha. but seriously.)

a little over a week ago, i received a package in the mail. oh my gosh i was squealing (K will tell you) like a little girl on Christmas when i saw what was inside:




Jane,  a Jamberry nails consultant, was SO kind and sent me a sheet! talk about the best surprise gift ever for me. we all know how much i love some color on my nails, and the pattern she sent me was perfect. just look how cool and funky and geometric it is! definitely something i wouldn't try to do freehand with polish! hah. i remember a girlfriend of mine doing these a few years ago, and i always thought they were freaking cute...and then of course i forgot about them until now.

i was able to sit down for a sec (yes, during B's nap time...when else?) and apply them. i can't say enough how easy it was and i was soooooo happy to not have to wait for layers to dry!

here's how it all went down:


• blow dryer
• cuticle pusher
• nail file
• scissors
• and of course your sweet Jamberry nails!

{not pictured: the Orly nail polish//Green With Envy and New York Color//Extra Shiny top coat i used for my ring fingers}


let's get started!


taken from the Jamberry Nails application instructions:
1// clean unpolished nails with aclcohol wipe and push back the cuticles
2// match nail (finger or toe) to the nail wrap that best fits
3// peel off nail wrap and warm the adhesive side with a mini-heater or blow-dryer for 3-5 seconds or until soft and flexible
4// when warm, press the wrap onto the nail. apply firm pressure around edges to adhere the wrap onto the nail. use rubber cuticle pusher to seal the wrap around the base of the cuticle.
5// trim the top with scissors and file off remaining wrap using a downward motion to remove excess
6// apply heat and pressure to the wrap again until it is bonded to the nail

so simple and easy huh? again, i love that i don't wait for layers to dry. and i love that i can do these in a short time frame, and continue with my day without being paranoid they are going to get smudged. that being said, i did paint my ring fingers a solid color with Orly polish//Green With Envy. i also put a top coat on all my nails (so yes, over the Jamberry nails), because i remember a girlfriend-that same one, who is a licensed beautician-say that she always does that to hers to really seal them on.

some other awesome facts about these nails?
• they are non-toxic
• you don't need any chemicals to remove or apply
• chip free, smudge free, and waterproof
• last about 2-3 weeks on fingers (because the nail bed grows out)
• last about 6 weeks on toes

another tip Jane told me was: If you have naturally oily nails, soaking in dawn soap for 3min then washing is the best way to get rid of excess oil.


want to try them too? head over here to Jane's site where there are about a billion nail choices to choose from! some of my favorites? the metallic gold pinstripe, gold tip on mint green, and baseball (for the boys-it's one of K's favorite sports).

Hope you're having a great Wednesday afternoon!

*have you tried Jamberry nails? what did you think of them?