Bedding, Accessories, and Many Thanks

July 30, 2010

Over the last few weeks a couple people have asked what our plans were for the nursery. Did we start? Color schemes, etc.

I really had not put much thought into it, but the one thing that I did know is that I was going to have to create a pretty little room for her on a budget.

We are going to use the furniture that is already in that room, we are just taking away the queen sized bed and putting up my nephew's crib that seems to match the rest of the furniture. Sarah's crib was not an option because her crib turned into a full sized bed which she is currently using. Luckily the room is a nice light beige color and the roman shades are cream color, so I was going to start from there and avoid painting and new window treatments.....again, all in effort to "Design @n a Dime"

I fought the urge for a long time and then I caved one Friday night and went to go@gle and typed in "baby bedding". The first website I visited I found two sets that I really really liked, so I sent the links to two of my good friends to get some feedback.

We all loved the same set, but of course, I did nothing more than bookmark this as a favorite.

Last Friday, when the girls presented me with the pretty pink polka dot cake, they also handed me a beautiful card that they all signed and wrote sweet little notes. Along with their well wishes, were a few gift cards for us to use to get things we needed for the baby.

As I mentioned in my last post, I was speechless and crying, I was so very touched by such a generous gift. I couldn't even read everything they wrote on the card because I knew I would not be able to turn off the water works.

The two friends(Dita and Marla) that saw the baby bedding also attended the workshop and said that they thought we could use the gift cards to get the bedding.

Haven't gone there yet, but I am still holding the set in my online cart so I can pull trigger when ready:)

Want to take a look?

Keep an open mind. I think this room is a little overdone. The curtains kill it for me, but I LOVE, LOVE, LOVE the crib set and a few of the accessories.

Inspiration Room Photo
Photos courtesy of Amazon
Bedding Close Up Collage
I did get to see this set in person with my good friend Dita. I had an appt right near her office the other day so we met for lunch {I love it when that happens, it is always a treat to get to spend an hour or two with her} and as we were ready to leave, she mentioned that the baby boutique that carried this set was just around the corner. We both jumped in our cars and headed over to check it out. It was beautiful and really well made....I saw a few other sets, but nothing that compares to this one. Dita is so in love with this set I think she might have another baby just so she can decorate a nursery:)

I couldn't be more thankful to these ladies. I will always remember their generous gift and each time I walk in the room and look around, I will see each one of them. All I need to do now, is order it.

So, back to Friday(sorry, I am skipping around a little) Just when I thought I had gotten control of myself and wiped away the eyeliner and mascara that made it's way down my cheeks, Wanda walks to my end of the table and tries to discreetly hand me a white gift bag and says, "This is just a little something for you" and she heads back to her end of the table.

I start to open the bag and when I see what it is inside I start SCREAMING......

Jewelry Box Wanda BLOG
The lovely and VERY TALENTED WANDA, snagged one of my recent photos of Sarah and handpainted her portrait on wooden jewelry/keepsake box. I was taken back by the beauty of this piece and the fact that she made it with her own two hands just means the world to me.

Not only did she use one of my favorite photos of Sarah, but she knew that our bedroom was decorated in blues and browns, so it matches perfectly.

Inside the jewelry box BLOG
When you open the box she decorated it with a flower, Sarah's name, and a quote:
"If you look at the world through a child's eyes, Everything will look different" The pictures do not even begin to compare to the detail and beauty of this piece has in person. It is really sepectacular.

I absolutley LOVE this gift with all of my heart and It was lovingly placed on a table in our bedroom. I have to touch it each time I walk by, it is so exquisite and really means so much to me.

Wanda, I cannot thank you enough for this special gift.

There were many Oooo's and Ahh's as this piece was passed around the table that evening. I think by now Wanda has a long list of people who would like to order a jewlery box of their own and I am guessing she might have a few more orders heading her way. I hope you are ready to do some serious painting my friend:) Check out her art gallery by clicking HERE.

Black and White Wednesday - "Workshop Weekend"

July 28, 2010

I am finally coming up for air after a TRULY FANTASTIC weekend!!! It exceeded my expectations in every way. The group of ladies that traveled across the country and one from Canada(Hi Wanda) were just incredible!! The weather was absolutely gorgeous....a little hot, but not too bad in the shade...and everything went according to plan without any glitches.....phew.

Let me give you a quick rundown of the our weekend.......

Friday night I made dinner reservations at a great Italian BYOB right on Main Street.....walking distance from the hotel. It was a wonderful meal except it was EXTREMELY HOT. It is tiny and they had a big brick oven running the entire time. We dominated most of the restaurant and we all had a great meal despite the heat.

After we finished our dinner, I was getting antsy to leave and everyone told me to just relax and we would take our time getting back to the hotel. Little did I know that they had a little surpise up their sleeves.....

The Cake By Karin

I was so shocked that I couild barely compose myself and did not do a good job of holding back the tears. Many of these ladies I had just met for the first time only moments before and they were giving me gifts and a beautiful cake. I was so touched by their generosity that I was completely speechless.......something that rarely happens to me.

After the festivites came to an end, we headed back to the hotel so I could hand out the binders and goody bags that I had put together for everyone and even though we hung out gabbing in the lobby, we didn't stay up too late because we all knew that we were going to have a long day ahead of us.

Saturday morning we started learning bright and early......By 8am we all piled into the conference room to learn about exposure, aperture, ISO, shutter speed, metering, and light.

After about two hours of technical instruction and lots of "ah ha" moments, we headed outdoors to work with models, putting what we learned to the test! We had an action packed day and shot from 10am until 4:30pm with an hour lunch break. It was an awesome day!

Once everyone had some time to cool off and clean up we headed up the street for a very nice dinner and a few cocktails. We were all starting to drag a little bit, but we still managed to hang out in the lobby of the hotel until midnight until we all finally turned in and called it a night.

Sunday we had an intense 4 hour photoshop session and then it was time to say goodbyes. Something I am not good at...... I hate good-byes...... but we all promised that we would get together again soon!! Most of the ladies are ready for workshop number two.

I am BEYOND proud of these ladies and all that they accomplished in one short weekend! They learned so much and really utilized their new skills.

A lot of the girls are still working on their photos and editing, but some of them were very speedy and started posting their pictures immediately.

I was so BLOWN away as I looked through them and really wanted to post their pictures instead of my own this week.

I did throw in one or two and so did my parnter in crime, Marla:) Just want to give her a quick shout out and a GIANT thank you for coming up to help me run this workshop. I could have never done it without you girl!

Okay....on to the MANY MANY photos taken during the workshop. I know the amount of photos in this post probably borders on obnoxious, but I counldn't help myself because I really wanted you to see what these ladies did. I think their work speaks volumes and I couldn't wait to show it off.

Take a look......

Some of the behind the scenes photos of all the girls in action thanks to Felicia and Donna.
Collage of the girls in action By Felicia

Maddy and Dita By Donna
Maddy and Dita

Action Shot By Donna
Wanda, Marla, and Terri.

Cocktails before dinner
Marla, Felicia, Denise, and I just before dinner Saturday night.

Catherine Up Close BLOG
Our First Beautiful Model, Catherine.........

By Stephanie

Catherine By Wanda


Anthony By Marla
Anthony, a handsome young man who happens to be Catherine's brother.

Anthony Taken By Felica

Anthony BY Terri

Anthony and Catherine By Wanda
A very cute moment between brother and sister....captured by Wanda:)

Lina By Marla
My beautiful friend Lina who posed for a few while her children(catherine and anthony)were being attacked by the mamarazzi!!

Kelly and Tom Casual By Denise
Our beautiful Bride and Groom, Kelly and Tom.

Bride and Groom By Marla

Kelly and Tom By Denise

Tom and Kelly By Kim

Kelly and Tom By Felicia

Alicia By Casey
The lovely Alicia!!! The girls are still amazed that she is only 13 years old.

Alicia 2 By Denise

Alicia 2 By Casey

Alicia and the hat By Marla

Skater Dudes BLOG
Our adorable skater dudes...Will and Zach. Aren't they the cutest?

Will By Kim

Will By Stephanie

Zach by Maddy

The boys By Maddy

Tiffany Angle BLOG
Will and Zach's gorgeous Mom, Tiffany. She and I went to high school together and recently reconnected through facebook. I am so glad that we did, it was so nice to see her again after all these years!

Tiffany Laughing BLOG

Tiffany by Terri

Well, this concludes the longest post ever.

Thanks for hanging in there with me......and a special THANK YOU TO THE ATTENDEES and MODELS that made this workshop a huge success.

The wheels are already turning for the next workshop, if you have an interest make sure I have you on my email distribution list.

In my opinion, this workshop weekend went so well that it will be very hard to beat, but I am certainly going to try.

Workshop Weekend Is Here

July 23, 2010

The big weekend is here and the ladies are on their way so I am about to head out to start meeting them as they arrive:) Everything is ready.......

Hat on Tutu with Binders BLOG
The binders have been put together and packed along with a few props for our models:)

Cookies on the tray 2 BLOG
I also decided to put together a "little something" for each of the girls....... Given the weekend weather forecast, we are going to need a little help getting through the day. It is going to be a hot one tomorrow and we will be outdoors all day long!!!

I figured a little "sugar rush" would go a long way:) You all have seen these cookies before....they are my favorite Italian Cookies. I made them yesterday and wrapped them in the clear bags with cute little ribbon. I think they would make a great favor for a bridal/baby shower.

Okay....I am out of here!! We are about to turn downtown Bethlehem upside down!! This is quite a crew and I am anticipating lots of funny adventures this weekend. There will be a lot of learning, but I know there will be a lot of fun too!!!

I hope to have a post up by Monday......

Have a wonderful weekend.

Black and White Wednesday - "Emotions Are Running High"

July 21, 2010

It has been an interesting couple weeks to say the least. We knew that after 50 months, we were closing in on the end of our wait for our "china baby". We thought we might have a few more months of waiting ahead, but only one day after we celebrated our 50 Month Anniversary, we got some TERRIFIC news.

Before you go jumping to conclusions, no we did not get "The Call"........ but we did find out that we are NEXT!!!

What does that mean?

That means in approximately 4 weeks...... we are going to see the face of our daughter for the first time:)

I can't really put into words how this makes me feel...... I am so SUPER EXCITED that I can barely think and function!! Most of the time I feel as though I am walking around without my head. I am forgetting things when I leave the house. I am getting "lost" around town...... I pulled into the gas station the other day and got out to pump, only to realize that my tank was on the other side......and on Friday afternoon, I was in such a daze I ran a red light. I am NEVER like this and I need to pull it together.

So I sit here now asking myself how I am going to get through the next few weeks?

It is going to be rough, but luckily we are going to be busy and have a couple of quick weekend trips planned with the kids that should help me take my mind off things.

I am trying very hard not to obsess about it......but it is not working because she is on my mind 24/7. I have been dreaming about her face for over 5 years....knowing my dreams are about to become our reality gets me so emotional.

In addition to thinking about her, I have been thinking a lot about Sarah. Nick is old enough to understand.....he gets it. Sarah on the other hand does not really grasp what we are telling her. I don't think she will until she sees a picture....or maybe until we return from China with a baby in our arms.

Sarah Black and White Pouty  BLOG

I am praying that Sarah will take her role as "big sister" as something positive and not something negative. That being said, I know that it is completely normal for them to have some issues or to become a little jealous during that initial homecoming/transition phase.

If anyone has any advice or suggestions to help pave the way and prepare her for the changes about to happen, feel free to chime in.

As you can tell, Emotions are running high and I am letting my mind run at wharp speed...with very little sleep I might add. I am thinking that this is all very normal when you get this close to referral.....right???

The Bethlehem Blueberry Festival

July 19, 2010

On Saturday, Sarah and I had the opportunity for some good girl bonding...... Pat had to work and Nick was spending some time with his Dad. So it was just us girls:)

Early that morning I had remembered that there was a blueberry festival going on all weekend. In all the years I have lived in this area, I have never gone. I really wasn't sure what it was all about, so I googled it and as soon as I saw the great list of kid friendly activities, I knew it would be the perfect place to take Sarah.

Blueberries Collage blog WM 2

Carousel Swing BLOG WM2

feeding the goat Collage blog WM2

Lemonade Collage BLOG WM2

Horse Collage BLOG WM2

Sand Art Collage BLOG WM2

Face Painting Collage BLOG WM2

Contemplative Collage BLOG WM3

Italian Ice Collage BLOG WM2

Texture Collage BLOG WM2

It was hotter than blazes out there, but it sure was fun! We will definitely go again next year.

I think I confused a few of you with my post on Wednesday. The workshop was not this past is next weekend. I have just been busy preparing everything.....that is why I have been a little MIA in blogland!

As of last night, I am happy to say that I am running way ahead of schedule.....I got a ton crossed of my workshop "to do" it should be a nice and easy week:)

Black and White Wednesday - "Getting Ready"

July 14, 2010

Catherine Pandora and Glam BLOG

How on earth is it already the middle of July.....Is this summer flying or what?

Well as per usual, life is crazy busy around here and my first workshop weekend is quickly approaching!! I am super excited as are the ladies coming to town next week:)

I have spent the last month and a half working very diligently to plan out every last detail of this weekend so that everything runs smoothly and so every one of these ladies walks away feeling like they have learned A LOT!!!

Catherine BW Mink BLOG 2

When I decided to go ahead and do this, I didn't really think of all the logistics that were involved.......

The first thing I did was set up a database for all those attending so we could share information and post questions or concerns.

Then I started on the accomodations......I had to get lodging at the hotel set up for 17 people.

Make sure that everyone had a way to get to and from their airport of choice(which means three different airports in the tri state area).

Dinner reservations for Friday and Saturday nights.

Set up conference rooms and made breakfast accomodations for both Saturday and Sunday mornings.

Put together a schedule for our whole weekend so everyone knew what to expect.

Made more than a few phone calls and lined up some BEAUTIFUL Models for the shooting portion of the workshop......

Fading Fence BLOG

If you haven't guessed, these two pretty ladies will be modeling for us....along with 5 other fantastic people!!

I am so thrilled with the line up I have for Saturday. In addition to these girls, we have an adorable little boy who is is a professional model/actor.......a gorgeous husband and wife team that are wearing their wedding attire.......and two beautiful women who are no strangers to the camera!!

I have just about everything done except one of the most important things....... I need to dump everything that is in my brain onto paper and get everything printed out and put into a binder for each person attending the workshop. Even though I have a really good start.....I still have a lot of work to do.

So why am I telling you this? I am now officially in total workshop mode....and probably will be right up until I sadly say goodbye to these ladies Sunday afternoon as we all go our separate ways!!

I am anxious, excited, and {a little nervous}......I know it will be a fantastic weekend......but I am a worrier and will fret about all the things that are out of my the weather!! Say a little prayer that the sun is shining and that the rain stays away!

Hope you all have a wonderful may not see me around much....but I will at the very least get a post up next Wednesday:)

All the pictures posted today were processed with the newly released Florabella Luxe Actions. They are is all of her other actions and textures.

Click here to visit Florabella Collection.