Saturday, February 25, 2012

Life and Book Review: Mennonite in a Little Black Dress

Nothing crafty today, but I hope to have a new creation soon.  Okay, I've been a bad blogger...and commenter.  I honestly haven't even looked at blogs since I've been home from CHA.  How horrible is that?!?  I'm really trying to find a happy medium in between all of this juggling. 

I know I sound like a broken record...but I'm busy at my day job with new changes coming in March.  I'm still busy with wholesale orders from CHA.  My best friend is going through a hard time in her life right now and I can't even give her my full attention.  I'm a bridesmaid and I'll be making invitations for my brother's wedding this summer.  This is my life right now.

I started this book in December and I just finished it.  Really, I just got too busy and finally made myself finish it.  And it still took me 2 more days to actually write this post, lol.  I absolutely loved this book though, so don't think it was boring!  I saw Amy Tan do a collage of all the books she read in 2011 and I hope to make one for my 2012 book list! 



It's about a lady who grew up as a Mennonite and who left the community to go on and do other things.  After being married 15 years, her husband leaves her for a man and she gets into a really bad car accident.  As she needs someone to care for her while she is recovering, she returns to her parents house in the Mennonite community.  Though she's sort of a rebel, this book is about accepting your heritage and having appreciation for it, even if you don't fully agree or live by it. 

I completely relate this book, because Hmong culture is very much like this.  Girls get married at a very young age and many don't even finish school...much less go to college.  This is changing, but still not the norm.  I am a rebel...I didn't get married at 16, I went to college, I have a great career, I make decisions for myself...and I married a white person, lol.

I was raised to take care of myself.  If I got married to someone who could afford to take care of me, great.  But if they died or left me...I needed to be able to work and survive.  I knew I would never be able to have those values and marry a cultural traditional husband. 

And best part...she actually talks a little bit about Hmong people!  One of her mom's neighbors is Hmong and she talks about them eating chicken intestines, lol.  Until Grand Torino came out, no one really knew who Hmong people were...unless some happened to live by you. 

The movie is fabulous by the way.  When Brent and I saw it in the theaters, we laughed the whole time.  I think people were thoroughly annoyed...as it's not a funny movie at all.  It's violent and it's very racial, but it stages every stereotypical thing and very true things in there.  Saying Hmong wrong, that we eat cat, the Hmong gangs, the traditional clothes, etc...

Anyhoo, back to the book...was definitely not my normal kind of read.  I got it for $2 at Borders while they were clearancing out their books.  But this will definitely be a favorite that I actually keep. 

Monday, February 20, 2012

SCRS Challenge #73 - Heart Challenge and Cupid Emily Bookmark

Welcome to Week 2 of Sparkle Creations Rubber Stamps Challenge #73! We appreciate you taking the time to join our challenge and look forward to seeing your creations each week. You have until Sunday, 2/26/12 @ 9 PM PST to play along with the current challenge, which is to use at least a heart on your creation.


Our challenge is open to all players. Each week a random winner will be chosen, and this week's winner will receive Valentine Oliver. In order to qualify for a prize, you must use a Sparkle Creations image on your creation. Most importantly, have fun! We can't wait to see your creations!


To play along in our challenge, upload a photo of your project and provide a direct link in the linky widget at the bottom of the SCRS post. If you use an online gallery (e.g. Splitcoast), please also use the keywords SCRSC72 and SparkleCreations (no spaces). If you have a Facebook account and are a fan of Sparkle Creations Rubber Stamps, you can also upload there. Deadline for challenge #73 is Sunday, February 26th @ 9 PM PST.

There She Goes Challenge Blog Hop

This month, There She Goes is SUPER excited to be releasing a SUPER SECRET stamp set!! Jessica has had Melyssa design a SPECIAL stamp set inspired by the group of stampers that have gathered from all over at her house this past weekend...and BOY is it PERFECT for us!!


To celebrate this new set, Jessica has had us all hard at work creating cards for a SPECIAL Blog Hop Challenge! Not only are some of the TSG girls participating, but we are being joined by the other AMAZING stampers that have gathered with us this weekend!  Are you ready for this???


The new set is called Ba Donkey Donk, and for all you snarky, tongue in cheek stampers out there, THIS is the set for you!! With three different styles of donkey's, and 9 AMAZING sentiments to go with it...really, there ISN'T an occasion you can use these for!! Ba Donkey Donk is a 4x6 stamp set of 12 stamps that will sell for $15!


Would you like to win the new Ba Donkey Donk stamp? Here is what you need to do - visit the Trendsetter’s and Guest's blogs that are participating in each of the blog hop challenges below and comment on their creations as you go.

One of the Trendsetter’s blogs (from each hop day) will be randomly chosen as the ‘it’ blog and a winner will be picked using a random number generator from the comments left on that Trendsetter’s Blog Hop Challenge post.


You will not know which blog has been chosen so the more you comment on the better your chances are of winning new stamps! The Blog Hop Challenges will be open until 5 PM Eastern Time Saturday February 26th, with the winner being announced during the release party chat.

Friday, February 10, 2012

SCRS February 2012 Release and Easter Ruby Previews

Hello everyone and welcome to ... RELEASE DAY! All new stamps are now available to buy from the SCRS store! Click here or above on the Sparkle Creations Store link to start shopping now.  We are also previewing the darling 'Easter Bunny Ruby' stamp today - isn't she the cutest?


This week sponsoring Card Patterns. Check out their blog to see the actual sketch and more darling SCRS creations from their wonderful DT. Play along this week for a chance to win.


Be sure to visit our fabulous SCRS designers for more peeks of Easter Bunny Ruby. Sparkle will be giving away a Easter Bunny Ruby rubber stamp to one lucky person! For a chance to WIN, you need to visit and comment on all of the designers' Easter Bunny Ruby blog posts (listed below) and then leave a comment under this very post here on the SCRS blog. You have until midnight EST tonight to comment.


I hope you enjoy our new release! Thank you for stopping by.  Sorry, my in-laws have been in town this weekend, so that's why I haven't been around.  I hope you all have a great Sunday!  PS...so sad to hear about Whitney Houston!

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

SCRS February Preview - Leprechaun Oliver

Hello everyone and welcome to the first day of our February previews!  Today we are excited to show you Leprechaun Oliver! All new stamps will be available to buy on Saturday, February 11th, 2012.

ETA: - Sorry that Blogger has not been my friend.  I apoligize that this post is so late.  I didn't check it last night and didn't realize until now that it never posted. 


Be sure to visit our fabulous SCRS designers for more peeks of Leprechaun Oliver. Sparkle will be giving away a Leprechaun Oliver rubber stamp to one lucky person! For a chance to WIN, you need to visit and comment on all of the designers' Leprechaun Oliver blog posts (listed below) and leave a comment under this very post here on the SCRS blog. You have until midnight EST tonight to comment.


I hope you all have a great Thursday! We'll be back tomorrow with a darling new Karber clear set preview!

SCRS Challenge #72 - Football Challenge, Cheerleading Emily Card, and Goal Updates

Welcome to Week 2 of Sparkle Creations Rubber Stamps Challenge #72! We appreciate you taking the time to join our challenge and look forward to seeing your creations each week. You have until Sunday, 2/12/12 @ 9 PM PST to play along with the current challenge. You can use your favorite team colors or anything related to football.  Check out the SCRS blog to see the rest of the DT's creations.


Our challenge is open to all players. Each week a random winner will be chosen, and this week's winner will receive Valentine Oliver. In order to qualify for a prize, you must use a Sparkle Creations image on your creation. Most importantly, have fun! We can't wait to see your creations!

Alright...I wasn't really into the Superbowl this year...though I did watch Madonna and found out that tickets for her show in Seattle go on sale next Monday!!  I'm kindof crazy...but I think I'm gonna try to get tickets.  Anyhoo- back to my card, lol.  I had to show some Seattle spirit, so I used my Seahawks colors.  We've only made it to the Superbowl once, but I still love my home team.  Though, living in Denver for a short time, has made a Broncos fan, lol.


To play along in our challenge, upload a photo of your project and provide a direct link in the linky widget at the bottom of the SCRS post. If you use an online gallery (e.g. Splitcoast), please also use the keywords SCRSC72 and SparkleCreations (no spaces). If you have a Facebook account and are a fan of Sparkle Creations Rubber Stamps, you can also upload there. Deadline for challenge #72 is Sunday, February 12th @ 9 PM PST.

Yikes...I'm so late with this!  But it's good for me to take a look and try to get back on track with everything! 

Work
  • Assistant Manager Workshop
  • Vault Teller Training - Canadian
  • Technical Writing Class
No progress in January so far with these 'big' projects, but my job is never dull.  I've been doing updates and teaching class.

 Sparkle Creations
  • Get new wholesale accounts
  • Add third stamp line to the store
  • Sales goal for each month - January, February, March, April, May, June, July, August, September, October, November, December
  • More efficient in costs
  • Teach card classes
CHA was definitely a different experience being an exhibitor instead of just walking the show.  It was a great show for me and am so grateful to everyone who came to help and support me!  I won't be attending the summer show this year, but am looking forward to having a full booth next January in Anaheim!  I will be saving my pennies to get a nice set up for the booth.

The aprons were such a hit.  Steph got asked a ton of questions about them and we even got asked to be photographed a few times.  Thanks again Shaela for making these!!

Personal
  • Take Yoga classes
  • More efficient in costs - January, February, March, April, May, June, July, August, September, October, November, December
  • Project Life
  • Utilize my iPhone
  • Visit my mom's grave
I've been couponing at full force since the beginning of the year.  I was warned that you don't really spend less at first, because you're still having to stockpile items.  But you should be getting way more stuff for the same amount you were spending.  I normally spend about $50 a week on groceries and some household items, but have been able to get $100 worth of stuff for the same price.

I didn't really make a spending goal until this month, but I'm hoping not to spend more than $150 a month on food, personal care items, and household items.  So far I have spend about $60.  I was able to get a ton of deordorant and razors for Brent for cheap, so that's where most of it has gone to so far. 

I just purchased a basket of fruit and vegetables from a co-op Bountiful Baskets.  For Brent and I, this will be a ton of food, but for $16.50, it just can't be beat.  I would spend way more shopping at Safeway, so I'm excited to see how it goes for us.  You don't get to pick what you get and it changes every week - though you don't have to buy every week - but I'm excited to try new and different things.  We love fruit and veggies, so this shouldn't be too bad for us. 

Well, I'll be back later with our first February preview!  Hope you're all having a great hump day!

Friday, February 3, 2012

Winter CHA 2012 Recap

Hi! Did you all miss me?  I had such a wonderful time down in Anaheim and I'm very grateful to have had such a successful show!  I really appreciate everyone being a part of it!  Sorry, this going to be a LONG post. 

The downside to having a booth is that I didn't have a lot of freedom to walk around like I have in the past years.  I feel like I missed half of the show, lol.  But I did steal a few minutes everyday to walk around a little bit.

ALL of my pictures are posted on Facebook.  They are all public, so you don't need a Facebook account to view them.  Here's the link to my CHA album.  If you've been following me around, you'll also know I brought Flat Peggy with me and Naomi brought Flat Thanh with her.  I made a separate Facebook page for them, so if you'd like to see their CHA photos, you'll need to go there, as I took them off my personal page.  Here's the link to Adventures of Flat Peggy and 3D Thanh.

The SADDEST part of the trip is that I MISSED Ali Edwards. :(  That's the one person I really, really wanted to meet.  Next year, it'll be the FIRST thing Stephanie and I do, lol!  But I did get to see real and crafty celebrities!

Disclaimer: I'm only showing pictures of NEW people I met.  Everything else is on Facebook, except my Homie pic with Jess.

Tori Spelling was debuting her new jewelry line.  Being a huge 90210 fan, we went and got our picture taken with her.  That was the one thing Brent wanted to do, lol. 


I LOVE that Brent is sporting my logo tee in this picture with Tori Spelling!  Good way to get my name out there honey!  Donna Martin graduates!  PS...she's a very sweet lady.  I keep thinking of Adam from Big Brother this last season, lol!


Vanna White was there to show her new yarn line.  Can I buy a vowel?!?


We got to see the famous Jennifer McGuire!


Jen dul Muro, Susan Liles, and Suzanne Dean!  Such sweet, sweet ladies!


Lisa Hjulberg, Naomi Gong (fist time meeting her), Jessica Diedrich, me, and Suzanne at California Pizza Kitchen.  I miss you all already!


Carisa Zglobicki and Tenia Nelson!  I heart my Denver girls!!


After all the CTMH and Bella years...I've finally gotten to meet my dear friend Lori Scott!  Such a sweetheart and so glad I got to finally meet her!  I had no idea she was coming, so this was such a sweet and wonderful surprise for me!


Here is the gang with Amy Tan.  I did get to see Kelly Purkey too, but since I already met her last year, I'm not posting that pic on here.  I just love Amy's new line!!

And you know Jess and I can't go without our bi-annual homie pic, lol.  We're totally busting up in this pic!


Sorry I don't really have product pictures to show you.  I know you will all love the new Spellbinders, the new Basic Grey, Authentique, and My Minds Eye paper.  For being a flower queen, I didn't even make it to the Prima booth. :(   Oh, well...guess I'll have to hunt for some pics online, lol.

I hope you all have a great weekend.  I am hoping to catch up with life, work, and orders.  I'll be back on Tuesday with my next challenge card and we start sneak peeks for our February release next week.