Dollar Tree Summer Fun: Flip-Flop Frenzy Craft Contest

I am excited to be partnering with Dollar Tree to share their new Summer Fun products with you.

Are you ready for summer? I know I am. I can’t wait for the warm weather, sunshine, the pool and relaxing on our backyard deck. Speaking of summer, I am excited to tell you about the Dollar Tree Summer Fun products. Dollar Tree Summer Fun is a new collection of summer tableware, party supplies, toys, flip-flops and more.

sub-lot

The colorful products will help get your fun-filled summer started. All Summer Fun products cost $1 each, and select items may vary by store. Supplies are limited, so get there soon!

I am thrilled flip-flops are included in the Dollar Tree Summer Fun collection. The flip-flops come in bright and fun colors for only $1. I love wearing flip-flops. If I could, I would wear them every day. Every…single…day. Flip-flops are the only type of shoes I need in the summer.

sub-lot

I am excited to tell you Dollar Tree is having a Flip-Flop Frenzy Craft Contest. Use your favorite crafting supplies on a pair of flip-flops to create an original flip-flop craft. I can imagine a summery flower like one from a Dollar Tree Summer Fun lei attached to my flip-flops. There are so many possibilities to decorating flip-flops. You could use flowers, ribbons or gems. Let your creativity flow.

sub-lot

The Flip-Flop Frenzy Craft Contest is going on now. Submit a photo of your creation online on DollarTree.com. You’ll be entered for a chance to win a $500 Dollar Tree gift card.

sub-lot

For more information about Summer Fun products, visit the Dollar Tree Summer Fun page.

Join Dollar Tree’s free loyalty program, the Value Seekers Club, for exclusive crafts, recipes, and tip ideas every month. Visit ValueSeekersClub.com

For more information about Dollar Tree, visit them on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest and learn more about new Dollar Tree products and contests by becoming an email subscriber.

Are you looking forward to summer?

Mini Succulent Garden in a Gravy Boat

I created an easy and quick gardening project – a Mini Succulent Garden in a Gravy Boat. Yes, in a gravy boat. I wanted to use a container that was simple and pretty. I also admit I thought a gravy boat would be a cute way to display mini succulents.

MiniSucculentGardenGravyBoatCloseup1

You may have noticed there are no gardening posts here on Happy Clippings. The most you’ve seen are fresh cut flowers displayed in a vase. There’s a good reason. I own no potted plants. I have in the past but with little success. What is the opposite of someone with a green thumb, is it a brown thumb?

Anyways, I think it’s time to try gardening again at least on a small scale. And by gardening I mean container gardening. I need a good beginner project.

I know succulents are popular. I also heard succulents are low maintenance plants. The combination of succulents and a small container seemed like the perfect way to get started.

MiniSucculentGardenGravyBoatTheFinale

Here’s what I did to create my Mini Succulent Garden in a Gravy Boat:

MiniSucculentGardenGravyBoatMaterials

I placed rocks/pebbles at the bottom of my gravy boat. I then put a layer of soil. I used soil specially formulated for slow growing plants such as succulents. so I placed my succulents in the  gravy boat and filled in with more soil. I tapped the soil down. I lightly sprayed water on the soil being careful not to overdo it.

Since I am no gardening expert, I researched and read about the planting and caring of succulents. Here’s a post and a video from Home Depot I found useful.

It looks beautiful now. Lets hope it stays that way. Wish me luck.

MiniSucculentGardenGravyBoatCloseup2

Do you like container gardening? Do you have succulents in your home?

See our other similar projects:

(Note: This post contains affiliate links. Read my disclosure policy here.)

Finding Confidence and Community

Last week, I attended the Haven Conference. The biggest take away I got from it was confidence and community. It was unexpected. I told my husband and a fellow blogger “Haven made me feel inspired and confident.

iStock_000013605891XSmall.jpg

(Photo Credit: iStockPhoto.com)

I won’t talk about being inspired because that’s a given when you’re at a conference with over 300 ladies who are in the DIY and Home niche. I already know these women are creative. So I had no doubt they would be inspirational.

Going into the conference, I didn’t know one person. There was no one I knew in real life. I did not even have an on-line relationship with them except for a few short intros in social media.

HavenConference2013(Photo Credit: Ballard Designs)

So at the conference, I did my best to wear a smile on my face and introduce myself to those around me. It was a big challenge for me to be in a room full of strangers and just start talking. It was way out of my comfort zone. But I did it…sometimes I was afraid and nervous…but I did it. You know what happened – conversations, connections and friendships. And my confidence started growing.

I attended several sessions. They ranged from blogging tips to home improvement tips. I not only learned about blogging but how important it is to talk and have open communications with other bloggers. The message I heard loud and clear was – we are in this together, we must work together. Together. And my confidence kept growing.

The time in between sessions consisted of meeting sponsors, parties and mealtime chats. I formed more connections and friendships plus learning, laughter and encouragement. And my confidence kept growing.

HavenConferenceDinner2013(New blogging friends: Jena from Involving Color, me, Anna – my wonderful roommate from A Good Home Etsy Shop and A Good Home Blog, Megan from Rhappsody in Rooms and Christina from Homemade Ocean)

To sum it all up…

My confidence was growing because my community was growing.

Honestly, until this conference, I felt alone in this blogging thing. Yes, I’ve met wonderful friends in my 3.5 years of blogging. I’ve met supportive friends. But this new feeling I got from Haven is different. It was a big reminder that…

It’s all about Community

  • You’re not alone. There are others who can relate to you.
  • Collaboration and Contribution. Ideas and advice are shared. Help is given.
  • Encouragement. Helping others understand their worth and to believe in themselves.

The list above is based on blogger relationships but I believe it applies to other parts of life as well. It could be mom playgroups, BUNCO groups, book clubs, volunteer groups, running groups or a charity group. It’s important to find one.

I remember over 6 years ago I moved to Pennsylvania and knew no one. I found a group of moms who were all in the same season of life as me. They became my friends, my support system, they could relate to me, they were my community. I am thankful to them. They were one of the reasons I started to love my new town and home.

Community can help give you the “we’re all in this together” feeling. Personally, that feeling helps me to believe in myself, to continue doing what I love and to share it with you.

So that’s my take on confidence and community. I’m not saying insecurities won’t creep up on me from time to time. But I’ll lean on my community – family, friends, loyal readers and my new blogging friends to help me.

Please read other recaps of the Haven Conference HERE. And a big thank you to the Haven team. My only regret was not having enough time to meet more fabulous Haven Mavens.

Getting Crafty: Decorating a Cottonelle Care Routine Caddy

Cottonelle is the preferred toilet paper in our house. So I didn’t have to think twice about trying another product from Cottonelle. Specifically, the Cottonelle Fresh Care Flushable Cleansing Cloths.

CottonelleWipesDispenserCaddyInBathroom

I can think of many uses for moist wipes. If you’re a mom like me, then you probably have experience with wipes. I know I used my fair share of baby wipes on my kids when they were in diapers. When I’m out somewhere or on-the-go, I have used wipes to clean my hands in addition to a dry napkin.

The Cottonellle Care Routine is about including wipes into your personal bathroom routine. The routine uses both Cottenelle toilet paper and Cottonelle Fresh Care Flushable Cleansing Cloths. You want to feel clean in the bathroom, so why not try a bathroom routine that can make you feel cleaner and fresher.

CottonelleCareRoutine

While I was at a conference for Home and DIY Bloggers – the Haven Conference – attendees were given the opportunity to decorate a Cottonellle Care Routine Caddy. We had a variety of supplies to use such as scrapbook papers, washi tapes, paint, brushes, Mod Podge and scissors. Many materials I use in my own tutorials. It was my kind of project.

CottonelleWipesDispenserSupplies

I heard about bathroom trends in a Design It Out with Cottonelle session. One bathroom trend is decorating with multiple types of patterns. This inspired me to embellish the outside of my caddy with a pattern that stood out. I then decorated the bottom inside of my caddy with a two different yellow patterns.

CottonelleWipesDispenserCaddy1

Color was also discussed. I love yellow because it’s bright and cheery. That’s why I used it on the bottom inside. I also love white in the bathroom because it’s a classic. That is why I chose to use a white pattern on the outside of my caddy.

The quatrefoil pattern on the outside of the caddy was a die cut. I cut it to fit and glued it using Mod Podge. I used Mod Podge to adhere the yellow scrapbook papers inside the caddy. I also applied another coat of Mod Podge on top of the papers.

I think my Cottonellle Care Routine Caddy looks beautiful in my bathroom.

Honestly, I don’t mind displaying the Cottonelle Fresh Care Flushable Cleansing Cloths dispenser on it’s own. The newly designed dispenser looks good by itself. But it also looks great on my decorated caddy.

Speaking of the caddy. You can decorate your own caddy, take a photo of it and enter it into a contest. Read more about it below.

********

From chevron to floral prints, polka dots to strips, the Cottonelle Cleansing Cloths fit into any bathroom space.

Design your own Cottonelle Care Routine Caddy to match your bathroom décor and be entered to win a year’s supply of Cottonelle product and a gift card to Joss and Main and a Spa Basket.

Choose your own caddy/tray to decorate. (Caddy/tray is not provided by Cottonelle.) Send a picture of your new caddy in your home bathroom and tell us why you love the Cottonellle Care Routine; to submit an entry email to Jennifer.Nelson@Ketchum.com.

No Purchase Necessary. Ends on 8/10/13 at 11:59 pm EST. Open to legal residents of 50 US and DC, 18 and older. Limit one entry per person/Twitter handle. Void where prohibited.

********

I am working with Cottonelle to help promote the “Talk it Out” program. All opinions are 100% mine.

20 Creative Easter Egg Decorating Ideas

Today, I am sharing creative ways to decorate eggs for Easter. There are several egg decorating techniques that go beyond dyeing them just one color. You could use multiple colors, stickers, glitter and much more.  

Some decorating ideas are more complicated than others.  But they are all creative and fun.

Here are 20 creative ways to decorate Easter Eggs:

EasterEggDecoratingIdeas1

1. Tissue Paper Decorated Eggs

2. Glitter Dots Easter Eggs

3. Glitter Striped Easter Eggs

4. Glitter Dipped Easter Eggs

5. Lace Decorated Eggs

6. Stenciled Easter Eggs

7. Speckled Eggs

EasterEggDecoratingIdeas3

8. Tie-Dye Easter Eggs

9. Melted Crayon Eggs

10. Marbled Eggs using shaving cream

11. Watercolor Easter Eggs

12. Metallic Eggs

13. Drip Dot Easter Eggs

EasterEggDecoratingIdeas2

14. Flower Sticker Eggs

15. Botanical Eggs

16. Wax Resist Patterned Eggs

17. Rubber Band Patterned Easter Eggs

18. Black and White Patterned Eggs using a sharpie 

19. Words or Message Easter Eggs using a Sharpie

20. Easter Egg design using toothpicks

Does your family decorate eggs for Easter? How did you decorate your eggs in the past? What do you plan to do this year?

Find other Spring and Easter ideas HERE.

(Photo Credits in above pictures: MarthaStewart.com, BHG.com and Disney’s Spoonful.com.)

Books I’m Reading – May 2012 Update

One of my goals for the year is to read more books. Well, I am happy to report I am still reading and loving it. I hope to continue this habit throughout the year and beyond.

In April, I finished reading the book An Everlasting Meal: Cooking with Economy and Grace and I also read Quitter by Jon Acuff.

Below is an updated list of my 2012 Read and To-Read Books.

Currently reading this book now…

Miserly Moms: Living Well on Less in a Tough Ecomony - I want to see if I can even learn more about living well while still saving money.

************

Books I read in March and April

An Everlasting Meal: Cooking with Economy and Grace 
My thoughts: Tamar Adler talks often in her book about not throwing away your scraps of food but instead finding a different purpose for it. It made me want to not be wasteful with our food. One example she mentions is turning stale bread into croutons. This inspired me to make bread crusts into French Toast Bites (read about it here.)

Quitter
My thoughts: If you want to pursue your dream job, then this book is a must-read. Even if you are thinking about it  – you should read this for inspiration. This book is not just a step-by-step guide. Jon Acuff shares his experiences – the good and the bad – and tells you what he learned from it.

************

Books I read in February

The Happiness Project: Or, Why I Spent a Year Trying to Sing in the Morning, Clean My Closets, Fight Right, Read Aristotle, and Generally Have More Fun – Read my thoughts on this book here.

************

Books I read in January
(Read my thoughts on each book listed below in my Books I’m Reading – February 2012 Update.)

How Full Is Your Bucket? Positive Strategies for Work and Life

Organized Simplicity: The Clutter-Free Approach to Intentional Living

The Reluctant Entertainer: Every Woman’s Guide to Simple and Gracious Hospitality

The Money Saving Mom’s Budget: Slash Your Spending, Pay Down Your Debt, Streamline Your Life, and Save Thousands a Year

Eat That Frog!: 21 Great Ways to Stop Procrastinating and Get More Done in Less Time

************

What non-fiction books are you currently reading? Are there any you’d recommend? I’d love to know. Please HELP ME add more great books to my list.

(Note: Some links in this post are affiliate links. Read my disclosure policy here.)

Books I’m Reading – March 2012 Update

One of my goals for the year is to read more books. Well, I am happy to report I am still reading and loving it. I hope to continue this habit throughout the year and beyond.

I didn’t read as many books in February compared to January. I mostly read and finished The Happiness Project.

Below is an updated list of my 2012 Read and To-Read Books.

Currently reading this book now…

An Everlasting Meal: Cooking with Economy and Grace. I am about half way through this book. It is taking me longer than expected to finish. As I read it, I find myself visualizing all the food combinations the author passionately describes. All the food talk makes me hungry which is a bit distracting while reading. This in no way is a bad thing. I will talk more about An Everlasting Meal next month.

************

On my to-read list…

Quitter

Miserly Moms: Living Well on Less in a Tough Ecomony

On Writing Well, 30th Anniversary Edition: The Classic Guide to Writing Nonfiction

************
TheHappinessProject1
Books I read in February

The Happiness Project: Or, Why I Spent a Year Trying to Sing in the Morning, Clean My Closets, Fight Right, Read Aristotle, and Generally Have More Fun
My thoughts: This book made me think about what makes me truly happy. Is it actions, people, activities? A career, a hobby, my behavior, my habits, my relationships? What steps can I do daily to be happier. The author, Gretchen Rubin, tells you what she did for a whole year testing out studies and theories to be happier. She even breaks it down by monthly themes. I like her idea of having Personal Commandments to happiness. I should write some for myself. Visit her blog – The Happiness Project to learn more or read her book The Happiness Project.

************

Books I read in January
(Read my thoughts on each book listed below in my Books I’m Reading – February 2012 Update.)

How Full Is Your Bucket? Positive Strategies for Work and Life

Organized Simplicity: The Clutter-Free Approach to Intentional Living

The Reluctant Entertainer: Every Woman’s Guide to Simple and Gracious Hospitality

The Money Saving Mom’s Budget: Slash Your Spending, Pay Down Your Debt, Streamline Your Life, and Save Thousands a Year

Eat That Frog!: 21 Great Ways to Stop Procrastinating and Get More Done in Less Time

************

What non-fiction books are you currently reading? Are there any you’d recommend? I’d love to know. Please HELP ME add more great books to my list.

(Note: Some links in this post are affiliate links. Read my disclosure policy here.)

(Photo Credit: iStockPhoto.com)

Books I’m Reading – February 2012 Update

BooksLightBulb

I mentioned in January one of my goals for the year is to read more books. Well, I am happy to report I have been reading more and loving it. I hope to continue this trend in February and beyond.

Below is an updated list of my 2012 Read and To-Read Books. I need to add more books to the list. I must be reading fast or the books are quick reads because I’ve gone through most of the to-read list I originally posted in January.

Currently reading this book now…

The Happiness Project: Or, Why I Spent a Year Trying to Sing in the Morning, Clean My Closets, Fight Right, Read Aristotle, and Generally Have More Fun

************

On my to-read list…

Miserly Moms: Living Well on Less in a Tough Ecomony

An Everlasting Meal: Cooking with Economy and Grace

On Writing Well, 30th Anniversary Edition: The Classic Guide to Writing Nonfiction

************

Books I read in January

How Full Is Your Bucket? Positive Strategies for Work and Life
My thoughts: Are you a bucket filler or a dipper? Do you give positive energy which results in filling someone with good emotions or does your negativity take away from someone’s energy. I strive to be a positive person although some days it’s harder to do so. This book goes into why your positive thinking and interactions affects not only yourself but others around you.

Organized Simplicity: The Clutter-Free Approach to Intentional Living
My thoughts: This book is a great read on how to go through your home and life and take out all the clutter. It makes you think twice about your possessions – do I really need this?…do I love it?…is it just clutter? I have been clearing out the clutter in my home thanks in part to this book. I’m not doing the “how-to” steps exactly like the book outlines. I’m doing it on a schedule that works for me. This book is a good motivator.

The Reluctant Entertainer: Every Woman’s Guide to Simple and Gracious Hospitality
My thoughts: I am definitely a reluctant entertainer. I bought this book last year in hopes of being a more confident and relaxed hostess. The book is filled with great advice on hospitality. Things don’t have to be perfect when hosting. It’s more important to make your guests feel welcome, comfortable and to make a connection.

The Money Saving Mom’s Budget: Slash Your Spending, Pay Down Your Debt, Streamline Your Life, and Save Thousands a Year
I did a review and giveaway (which is now over) on this book. You can read my thoughts on the book HERE.

Eat That Frog!: 21 Great Ways to Stop Procrastinating and Get More Done in Less Time
My thoughts: I enjoyed reading this book. You can’t just say you’ll be productive. You have to actually plan for it. I somewhat already knew this. But this book has motivated me to write my goals, make lists and prioritize them. There is much in the book that seems to be geared towards business. I simply apply those points to my personal life goals as well as my blog goals.

************

What non-fiction books are you currently reading? Are there any you’d recommend? I’d love to know. Please HELP ME add more great books to my list.

(Note: Some links in this post are affiliate links. Read my disclosure policy here.)

(Photo Credit: iStockPhoto.com)

Every day may not be good…but…

Every day may not be good… but there’s something good in every day.

Find other inspirational quotes HERE.

(Photo credit)

My Books To Read 2012

BooksLightBulb

One of my goals for the year is to read more books. I’ve never been much of a reader. I recall a a brief period when I was in my twenties where I read several fiction books. This reading habit didn’t last long.

Most of my reading had been from articles in a magazine or a website. This year I want to focus on reading non-fiction books. Books on food, money, organization, living and more. Books that will challenge me to be a better person. Books that will give me new perspectives, encouragement, motivation and inspiration. Maybe along the way, I’ll learn new skills and improve current ones.

Why am I sharing this with you? I want it to be a win-win. You see…if I share my plans with you all and update you on my progress, it’ll keep me accountable. The win for you is…maybe, you’ll read one of the books listed and it helps you. Or maybe, you’ll make your own reading list.

Below is a list of my 2012 To-Read Books. I hope to add more books to the list during the year.

Books I read this month (January)
Eat That Frog!: 21 Great Ways to Stop Procrastinating and Get More Done in Less Time
My thoughts: I enjoyed reading this book. You can’t just say you’ll be productive. You have to actually plan for it. I somewhat already knew this. But this book has motivated me to write my goals, make lists and prioritize them. There is much in the book that seems to be geared towards business. I simply apply those points to my personal life goals as well as my blog goals.

The Money Saving Mom’s Budget: Slash Your Spending, Pay Down Your Debt, Streamline Your Life, and Save Thousands a Year
My thoughts: I will be doing a review and giveaway on this book soon. Stay tuned.

************

Currently reading this book now…
The Reluctant Entertainer: Every Woman’s Guide to Simple and Gracious Hospitality
My thoughts: I am definitely a reluctant entertainer. I bought this book last year in hopes of being a more confident and relaxed hostess. I am finally reading this book now! I’ll comment more when I finish with it.

************

On my to-read list…
Organized Simplicity: The Clutter-Free Approach to Intentional Living

The Happiness Project: Or, Why I Spent a Year Trying to Sing in the Morning, Clean My Closets, Fight Right, Read Aristotle, and Generally Have More Fun

How Full Is Your Bucket? Positive Strategies for Work and Life

Miserly Moms: Living Well on Less in a Tough Ecomony

************

What non-fiction books are you currently reading? Are there any you’d recommend? I’d love to know.

(Note: Some links in this post are affiliate links. Read my disclosure policy here.)