Holiday Gift Guide (4th Edition)

It’s time for Val’s Holiday Gift Guide! I haven’t been “in business” as long as Tara and Camille, so this is my only Gift Guide this year. But that doesn’t make it any less amazing! Check out the following companies/products below and you should be able to find something for just about everyone on your list this year!




#1 Whooz?


Whooz? Vinyl Labels for iDevices was designed to solve the problem of lost, stolen or “borrowed” cords and cables for iDevices. These vinyl labels cover your charger cables so they are easily identifiable and stay organized in your drawer/purse/wherever you keep all your cords and cables. They come with clear instructions and are really easy to put on. The vinyl is good quality and shouldn’t rub or peel off easily. Each pack of labels comes with four designs and they just released three new sets of designs for the holidays. Look for another giveaway of these awesome labels coming soon!
Read my full review HERE.




#2 Fabness Canvas


Fabness Canvas is an easy-to-use online canvas printing site.  The process is simple: in just five easy steps you can have a beautiful, professional-looking canvas print of any picture you choose. It ships quickly and arrives perfectly packaged to avoid any damage. The quality is superb. Believe me when I say you will LOVE your Fabness Canvas! And lucky for us Dandy readers, Fabness is extending a special deal to us for up to 82% off! Order now to get your canvas in time for Christmas!  The sale ends at midnight on November 26, so hurry! This is truly a great gift for anyone.
Read my full review HERE.




#3 Little Passports


Little Passports is a monthly subscription service that helps your child learn more about the world around him. Monthly packages transport your child to either another country (the World edition) or a state (USA edition) and teach them all about the local customs, historical landmarks, foliage, animals and much more. The activities, stickers, and field guide can keep kids busy and learning for hours, and they look forward to receiving their package in the mail every month. Little Passports is better for older children (ages 5-12) but even the little ones can appreciate learning about the world around them.
Read my full review HERE.




#4 Douglas Cuddle Toys


Douglas Cuddle Toys has been a family owned and operated company for more than 60 years! They specialize in plush animals, but they also carry several types of baby dolls and have a new line, Dreamy Dress Ups, that features dress-up wings, masks and dresses! Some gifts your little ones may like this Christmas are
the Petunia Ballerina Mouse (available in two sizes!), the Infant Claire Stripes & Dots Doll, and the Dreamy Dress-Ups rainbow fairy mask and Rainbow Fairy Wings with Glitter. Be sure to check out their extensive line of plush animals to find the perfect stuffed animal for any animal lover!
Read my full review HERE.

doug collage



#5 Kelly’s Funky Kreations


Kelly’s Funky Kreations is an Etsy shop with a variety of homemade items and a ton of personality! Kelly makes everything from beautiful door wreaths to baby hair bows to awesome safety pin watches, but one of her most creative creations are her custom Stethoscope Covers. She currently sells them in a variety of fun, colorful fabrics, but if you have a custom order she will work with you to create the perfect gift. Think how happy your nurse/doctor/PA friend will be when she has a cute, bright stethoscope around her neck!
Read my full review HERE.

steth collage


Happy Shopping, Dandy-ites! Keep posting in every few days for the next round of awesome Holiday Gift Guides!

Fabness Canvas {Giveaway}–CLOSED

This 4th of July, my husband’s side of the family got together to take some family photos. There were 15 of us, six under the age of 10, and our photographer was also in the pictures, so, needless to say, it was a bit of a circus. As usual, our small family photo was a joke–there wasn’t one picture where we were ALL looking at the camera and smiling–but with some clever photoshopping by my hubby, we were able to craft a perfect (enough) family photo. In looking for ways to show it off, we came across Fabness Canvas and thought a canvas wrap of our photo would be the perfect way to display it!


Fabness Canvas is an easy-to-use online canvas printing site.  The process is simple. First, you pick a canvas style. You can choose one single picture on one canvas, one picture on multiple canvases (SUCH a cool look, in my opinion) or you can pick multiple images on multiple canvases.


Then you pick whether you’d like a gallery wrap (where the picture wraps around the sides of the canvas) or a solid color wrap. Next, you upload your picture or choose one from their Art Market. Once your picture is uploaded, you pick your canvas size and edit the picture if need be. You can add a background color, rotate and zoom in on the picture and even add effects like making it black and white, sepia, half-sepia, etc.


Finally, you get to preview your canvas in a series of rooms to see how the size and orientation will look over a couch, crib, bed, etc. Once you’re happy with your canvas, you enter your shipping and payment information and you’re done!


It’s really that simple. Just five steps and totally fool-proof. I think the only annoying thing was that I had to create an account to check out,  but that took all of 30 seconds, so it really wasn’t a big deal.Our canvas arrived in about 10 days nicely wrapped and protected. It came with sawtooth hangers so we could hang it whichever way we wanted. The hangers were easy to attach to the canvas backing and are good quality.


 My hubby and I are so pleased with our canvas! It looks great, feels great, and even held up under my 2-year-old (accidentally) stepping on it! The canvas is thick and the print quality looks superb. For the quality of print you get and the customization options, the prices are more than fair, and the process was just SO EASY!  These would make great gifts for family and friends, and they’re always running deals on their Facebook page, so connect with them and get a deal (and a head start) on your holiday shopping! Then, enter below to win a 10×15 Custom Canvas!


Enter to Win a 10×15 Custom Canvas from Fabness Canvas!


** This giveaway is open to U.S. entries only.

** The winner of this giveaway will be drawn no later than the morning of November 4th, 2013, and will be emailed within 24 hours.  If the winner does not respond within 48 hours, a new winner will be drawn.

** This posting and giveaway were sponsored by Fabness Canvas, but all opinions are strictly my own.

ArtRage {Review}

Does anyone out there remember KidPix?  It must have been the free art program that came with every Mac back in the day, because just looking at this logo brings back a flood of memories from my youth!  If you are a child of the 80s, chances are you recognize this:


I really love getting creative and artsy with all types of mediums, and I’d probably rather dink off with a virtual art board than any silly computer game, so I knew I’d have fun trying out ArtRage!  I am by no means a connoisseur of fine art, but would consider myself atleast at an intermediate level when it comes to Photoshop and other creatively-minded software.


ArtRage is a popular paint software that can be used on Mac/Windows, iPad and the iPhone.  Its like the super adult grown-up version of KidPix, with all the bells and whistles to do a number of amazing things.  I downloaded the Windows version in about a minute, and got right to work playing around with what it could do.  Download, go.  THANK YOU for creating a product that doesn’t entail a hours worth of reading material to understand what the heck you’re doing.  Here I go…

1   2

The set-up is quite intuitive.  If you’re an artist, or can atleast recognize the tools in the bottom left corner, you’re good!  Start playing, and enjoy the innovative technology that makes this program so unique.
I didn’t think I’d love all the tools and settings that rest on top of the canvas above your project, but it wasn’t a problem at all.  They disappear when you want to work in that space with a tool.  These controls are placed in the bottom by default, but you can arrange them any way you’d like.  I’ll show you some more cool things that ArtRage can do below.
I had a lot of fun with it!  Clearly, I am a novice, and there are some pretty funky things going on here, mostly because I was trying out all the different tools at the same time to see how they worked.  I’m really excited to spend some more time with this program and really dive in to what it can really do, because I feel like I’ve only scratched the surface.
What makes this program different than others is the way you can manipulate the materials in a real-life fashion.  You can get the feeling of actually painting digitally with tools that behave like they should in real life.  For example, oil paints that smear and blend, and watercolors that flow together with soft, wet gradations.  My favorite tool was the palette knife–something I haven’t seen on other painting programs, but I really liked.  Here are more things that you can do with ArtRage:
A Paint Symmetry feature allows you to create automatically reflected strokes as you work.
4-screen-refsI almost always work off of a reference, and ArtRage allows you to pin up images that can act as a useful guide while you’re working.  Look closely at the canvas!  It looks just like real paint on actual canvas.
4-screen-viewsYou are also able to zoom in and work on details while keeping the big picture off to the side as a reference.  Floating views let you keep an eye on your work when you are attending to small spaces.
Isn’t this program cool!?  As I showed my husband, we both agreed that having ArtRage on a touchscreen device would be super cool, especially since it can allows rotation, scale, and movement of the canvas with you fingers.  I think you’d really feel like you were finger painting as you utilized multi-touch gestures with layers, selections, stencil, etc.  One thing is for sure.  If I’m ever on bedrest, I’ll be spending my long and stationary days on ArtRage!  What a fun rainy day playground!
For a full list of new features, see:
Available immediately for Mac and Windows 8, 7, XP, ArtRage 4 is priced at $49.90 at:  ArtRage for iPad and ArtRage for iPhone are also available, priced at $4.99 and $1.99 from the Apple iTunes Store.
I received one or more of the products mentioned above for free using Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will be good for my readers.

{Giveaway} Laura Gunn Art Prints ***ENDED***


If you love fabric (like I do) then I’m sure you will recognize this fabric:


It’s from designer Laura Gunn!  And how about those cute bird prints???

Those are her’s too!

Do you have a dad on your list who’s an art aficionado?  Well, then the Laura Gunn Studio is the place for you to get dad some great watercolor art prints!


The winner of this giveaway is going to receive an 8×10 art print from Laura Gunn Studio and it’s winner’s choice!

*This giveaway is open to entries worldwide

*Winners are not notified through email, so you have to check back to find out if you won! The winner of this giveaway will be posted on Monday, June 11th. Be sure and check back then to see if you won, so you can claim your prize!
a Rafflecopter giveaway

This posting and giveaway was sponsored by Laura Gunn Studio, but all opinions are strictly my own.

Pumpkin & Butterfly {Giveaway} ***ENDED***




Happy Almost Valentine’s Day!  Do you have big plans for the actual day?  Or did you celebrate already over the weekend?  We might try to go out to dinner sometime soon.  Maybe this weekend.  It’s hard to find a babysitter for a 6 week old!  My husband (the audiologist man) did tell me already what my present for Heart’s Day was going to be.  He surprised me with plans to update our walk-in closet from its original 1960’s look.  Plans that included him doing the renovating.  Apparently he has spent weeks planning out the exact layout, shelving, etc.  I must admit that when I was first told of this endeavor I was just a tad bit nervous.  Now I’m not saying that I don’t have complete faith in my husband, because that is the farthest thing from the truth.  It’s just to my knowledge he’s never done any sort of wood working.  So that made me a little nervous.  I mean he knows a whole lot about ears!  🙂  Well, you know what?  I’ve just discovered that my husband also knows about building things!  I’m happy to report that the closet is looking mighty fine.  Yep I’m really proud of him!  Not that I had any doubt.  🙂  It’s still in process, but I’ll be sure to post pictures of the finished product.  Can I just tell you that I’m so excited with my present?  Audiologist man has heard me complain and complain about our closet.  He’s the best!  So to my audiologist man I say:

Where can you find that adorable elephant print?  At Pumpkin & Butterfly that’s where!

In honor of Valentine’s Day… I LOVE LOVE LOVE this shop!

Pumpkin & Butterfly has a ton (no pun intended) of art prints perfect for the day of love.


But frankly all of those lovely prints are perfect for giving and decorating around your house all times of the year!  Let someone know that you love ’em by ordering them a print from Pumpkin & Butterfly!

All of the art prints from Pumpkin & Butterfly are customizable in color options which is a plus for matching any decor.  Let’s have a looksie shall we?

Check out these adorable Someday Prints that would be too cute in your little dreamer’s room:




And I could not leave out sharing this one, because I’m a huge fan of the family trees:

And how cool are custom silhouettes???


Don’t you just love Pumpkin & Butterfly now just as much as I do?

This week one very lucky winner is going to receive an 8×10 “Awesome Print” (with the white background, black writing, and red “WE”) from Pumpkin & Butterfly!

*** This giveaway is open to US entries only***

There are 7 chances to win. Be sure and leave separate comments for each entry on this posting to enter. **If you qualify for all 7 chances then leave 7 separate comments**

(1): Leave your name, email address, or whatever you feel most comfortable leaving in a comment. (ex: “Dandy Smith”)

(2): Go to Pumpkin & Butterfly, have a look around, and then tell us your favorite art print! (ex: “Dandy Smith = I absolutely love the family tree print with the acorns! )

(3): Subscribe to the Dandy Giveaway blog with your email address (in the right hand sidebar).  (ex: “Dandy Smith= subscribed”)

(4): Like Pumpkin & Butterfly on Facebook or if you already do.  (ex: “Dandy Smith= like”)

(5):  Tell people about this giveaway and then tell us how you did!  (ex: “Dandy Smith= emailed, called, texted, etc.”)

(6): Follow Dandy Giveaway on Twitter and then tweet about this giveaway. (ex: “Dandy Smith= twitter & tweet”)

(7): Become a follower of Dandy Giveaway through Networked Blogs (in the right hand sidebar) or if you already follow through there.  (ex: “Dandy Smith= follow Dandy.”)

***Remember*** Winners are not notified through email, so you have to check back to find out if you won! This giveaway will be open for entries until Sunday, February 19th at 5:00 pm CST.  Be sure and check back on Monday, February 20th to see if you won, so you can claim your prize! ***Remember*** Winners are not notified through email, so you have to check back to find out if you won!

This posting and giveaway was sponsored by Pumpkin & Butterfly, but all opinions are strictly my own.

{Giveaway} Dali Decals ***ENDED***

Hello all my dandy friends and Happy New Year!  This was supposed to post sometime on Tuesday last week, but as you can see I’m a little behind schedule.  The day after Christmas was a busy day… just with getting back in the groove of things after that holiday weekend’s festivities.  Then on Tuesday morning I had to rush off to have a baby, so it didn’t get posted then!  🙂  At any rate I hope you all had a very, very, very dandy Christmas with friends and loved ones.  It was a time for gift giving, remembering the meaning of the special day, and spending time with family.  I thoroughly enjoyed this year and the time to reflect on the true meaning of Christmas.  When I have those moments then it makes it an even more memorable holiday.  Of course I also like to give gifts and that just adds to the magical memories!  It always fun to hunt for that perfect gift for someone.  This year we gave my brother and his wife a photo on canvas from Dali Decals.  A few months back I snapped this picture of the St. Louis LDS Temple where they were married:

Dali Decals put it on canvas and it turned out fabulously!  Also, can I just tell you that their customer service is superb?  I enjoy working with Dali Decals every time on a decorating project.

In addition to the new Custom Printed Canvas

Dali Decals still has all their unique wall decals:


Plus mini decals:

How cute to decorate your kitchen appliances!


At Dali Decals you can even help with the decorating of your kitchen, bathroom, any where you want the look of a mosaic backsplash:

Talk about renovating without a major expense!

Ready to enter to win???  One very lucky winner is going to receive a $25 gift certificate to spend at Dali Decals!  So start entering and tell all of your friends!

*** This giveaway is open to US entries only***

There are 7 chances to win. Be sure and leave separate comments for each entry on this posting to enter. **If you qualify for all 7 chances then leave 7 separate comments**

(1): Leave your name, email address, or whatever you feel most comfortable leaving in a comment. (ex: “Dandy Smith”)

(2): Get Dandy in your inbox by signing up for the brand NEW newsletter in the right hand sidebar.  (ex: “Dandy Smith = signed up!)

(3): Follow Dali Decals on Twitter (or if you already do) and then tweet about this giveaway.   (ex: “Dandy Smith= twitter and tweet”)

(4): Like Dali Decals on Facebook or if you already do.  (ex: “Dandy Smith= like Dali Decals”)

(5):  Tell people about this giveaway and then tell us how you told!  You get an entry for each one that you do!  (ex: “Dandy Smith= emailed, blogged, texted, called, etc.”)

(6): Go to Dali Decals, have a look around, and then leave a comment telling us your favorite item.  (ex: “Dandy Smith= I love the custom printed canvas options!”)

(7): Become a follower of Dandy Giveaway through Google Friend Connect (in the right hand sidebar) or if you already do.  (ex: “Dandy Smith= follow Dandy”)

***Remember*** Winners are not notified through email, so you have to check back to find out if you won! This giveaway will be open for entries until Sunday, January 8th at 5:00 pm CST.  Be sure and check back on Monday, January 9th to see if you won, so you can claim your prize! ***Remember*** Winners are not notified through email, so you have to check back to find out if you won!

This posting and giveaway was sponsored by Dali Decals, but all opinions are strictly my own.

Hello Canvas!

My husband gave me the best present for Christmas this last year.  He had this photo put on canvas:

I took this in one of the many gardens at Chatsworth House in Devonshire, England.  Can you say Mr. Darcy???  Yep that’s where the most current Pride and Prejudice was filmed.  Chatworth House has also long been speculated as the location from Austen’s book.  When my husband presented me with the gift I was so surprised!  It was such a beautiful gesture!  I absolutely love it and it makes me so happy every time I see it hanging in our dining room.  So when it came time for Mother’s Day I knew just what to give my mom.  A photo on canvas from Hello Canvas!  They let me order a 26×36 canvas all complimentary like!  🙂  The tough part came when I had to decide on which picture to have them put on canvas.  That’s a hard decision and you know that I’m not good with the decision making process.  So…I did the only think I could do and took a picture specifically for it!  And here’s how it turned out:

This is a picture of the church where my parents were married.  Fortunately I now live really close to it, so I was just able to drive over and snap a few pictures of it!  🙂   The gift from Hello Canvas was a mega hit!  My mom loves it, but so does my dad.  Yep it was the perfect gift for Mother’s Day!

Hello Canvas has so many size options to choose from to fit any room or any style.  Also editing and effects.  Plus, ordering is made so simple with a quick upload process and shipping was super fast!  It’s the perfect place to get a unique gift that will be treasured for years to come!

Tina Crespo-Photographer ***ENDED***

Unique artwork found in a home setting truly says a lot about your tastes in decorating. It adds this individual flair that can become a conversational piece or develop the theme of decor throughout. One piece of artwork can ultimately take on its own meaning and define the room. The great thing about photography as an artform is the style that can be generated and captured perfectly. Only a photographer could capture something so precise…
…and with so much detail!
This photograph is from Tina Crespo-Photographer and I think it’s amazing!
Many of the photographs found at Tina Crespo are vintage-inspired. Making the art even more so unique and special!
Are you looking to decorate with some intricate flora?

How about some marvelous scenes?
Well, all can be found at Tina Crespo-Photographer! Including that oh so vintage feel:

LOVE these!
Ready to enter to win some unique art? The winner of this giveaway will be able to choose any one 8×8 print from Tina Crespo! ***This giveaway is open to the U.S. only***
There are 5 chances to win. Be sure and leave separate comments for each entry on this posting to enter. **If you qualify for all 5 chances then leave 5 separate comments**

Entry #1: Leave your name, email address, or whatever you feel most comfortable leaving in a comment.
Comment example, Dandy Smith

Entry #2: Become a follower of the Dandy Giveaway blog in the sidebar or if you are already a follower.
Comment example, Dandy Smith= blog follower

Entry #3: Tell people about this giveaway and then tell us how you told!
Comment example, Dandy Smith=emailed my friends

Entry #4: Become a fan of Tina Crespo on Facebook or if you are already a fan there.
Comment example, Dandy Smith=fan on Facebook

Entry #5: Go to Tina Crespo-Photographer and tell us your favorite photograph and why.
Comment example, Dandy Smith= I think the photographs of the vintage cameras are really cool, unique, and would look great in my office!

This giveaway will end tonight at 11:30pm EST. Be sure and check back tomorrow to see if you won!

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