Disclosure: This site contains sponsored posts, affiliate links (which means I earn a percentage of the sale) and is part of the Amazon affiliate program, but all opinions are strictly my own.

Lamp Post BOO!

Disclosure: This could be a sponsored post or contain affiliate links (which means I earn a percentage of the sale), but all opinions are strictly my own.

Sometimes I struggle at holiday decorating.  Only because it’s so time consuming and I feel like I don’t have much time.  Anyone else feel that way?  Okay.  So I’ll level with you.  It might also have something to do with the fact that sometimes I think that I’m not incredibly crafty.  Okay.  I think that often.  Like I’m not all thumbs when it comes to crafts, but I’m pretty particular and need things to look just right.  One minor imperfection and I can’t let it go.  Whenever I see said completed craft that looks kind of strange or has a tiny blemish I cringe.  Of course I don’t cringe at other people’s crafts.  I don’t notice their mistakes.  Only my own.  I’m an insecure crafter.  It’s a complex.  I must overcome.  Anyone else have this problem?

So I struggle with time and being an insecure crafter.  I really do want to be more secure in my crafting abilities.  Really I do.  Maybe I need lessons?  Probably.  Crafters Anonymous?  Definitely.  I see all of these cute ideas everywhere.  Tons and tons of cute ideas.  I pin all of them right here on Pinterest, but then I never do them.  Or if I start the project I never finish it.  I’m airing all of my guilt today, right?!  My name is Tara and I’m a craftaholic.  I bet there is a group for that… Honestly I do need to be better at finishing the projects that I start.  It’s a wonder that I can actually sit down at the computer and type blog postings when I’m such a spaz when it comes to everything else.  You laugh?  I may have the focus for some things, but with crafty projects… Well, I turn into that dog Dug from the movie “UP”.  It’s true.  Maybe you are totally laughing, because you think that my blog postings are exactly like that???  Oh my.  I really am insecure.  But I’m working on my insecurities.  Both craft related and non.  I’ve decided that the first step (remember I’m a psychology educated gal) in the process would be simple crafts.  If I do something simple then I will finish it and it will be perfect because it will be really difficult to mess up something so simple.  It’s that simple.

Here is THE easiest DIY Halloween yard decoration that I’ve ever made.

Seriously the easiest.

It’s dedicated to all the Dugs in the world.

I give you…

The Lamp Post Ghost Tutorial!

 

In front of our house we have an ugly light post.  I’m sure it was beautiful in its time.  Now it’s just quite dingy looking.  It’s super old.  Original to the neighborhood when others have been replaced.  The lamp doesn’t even work so I’m not sure exactly why it still in front of our house.  Maybe I should be digging it up…  One day we will just replace it?  Maybe?  Probably.  In its prime it was a gas lamp.  Then it was converted to electric way before we moved in.  However, the “electrician” (previous home owner who was a medical doctor and had no idea about how to be an electrician) didn’t do a very good job.  It quit working so the “electrician” then cut the line and left this random wire in the basement that operates the lamp post only it plugs into nothing.  No outlet.  No switch.  No lit lamp post.  So you get the idea.  We are left with an antique lamp post that has absolutely no use just standing in our front yard.

ghost2

 See?  It’s not the most beautiful thing in the world.

BUT recently when I looked at that old lamp post I saw something different.

I saw a ghost.

So I decided to create one.  A lamp post ghost.  So simple that even a 6 year old could do it.

ghost

 And it can be created in record time.  By the 6 year old.

To create the ghost I purchased 3 yards of white drapery fabric.  It was on clearance at less than $3 a yard.

You could just as easily use a white sheet.

Banjo used a black Sharpie to make the ghost’s eyes and mouth.  Then we just threw the whole thing over the lamp post and there you have it:

Our Lamp Post BOO!

ghost3

You can transform your own lamp post for Halloween and it will look super dandy.

ghost5

Blue Attic Door {Giveaway} – CLOSED

Disclosure: This could be a sponsored post or contain affiliate links (which means I earn a percentage of the sale), but all opinions are strictly my own.

 

Remember reading earlier this year about one of my favorite jewelry shops on Etsy???  Earring Exchange.  I absolute love that shop and the ability to interchange the earrings.  What’s new with the owner of Earring Exchange?  A new shop and it’s sure to be another treasured favorite!  For starters I love artwork.  I’m always impressed with its beauty and ability to tell a story with each stroke of the brush.  There’s just something peaceful about viewing a painting.  I think that’s the main reason for art museums being so quiet.  People are contemplating what they are seeing and not wasting energy on talking.  The owner of Earring Exchange has taken the 2 great loves (jewelry and art) and combined them into one great shop:  Blue Attic Door

There are beautiful watercolor print earrings:

And…

Paper print ones:

  

So very gorgeous.  Am I right?  So…  Who wants to win something extraordinary from Blue Attic Door?

One very lucky winner is going to receive one of the following art print/earring gift sets (5×7 watercolor print and matching earrings) :

 

Poppy                                                                                            Yellow Woodland Bird

   

 

Siamese Cat                                                                                Santa

   

Winner’s choice of which set!

 

a Rafflecopter giveaway

*This giveaway is open to US entries only.

*The winner of this giveaway will be posted no later than the evening of Tuesday, November 27th and emailed within 24 hours. If the winner does not respond within a week, a new winner will be drawn.

*This posting and giveaway were sponsored by Blue Attic Door, but all opinions are strictly my own.

Free $10

Disclosure: This could be a sponsored post or contain affiliate links (which means I earn a percentage of the sale), but all opinions are strictly my own.

Packages from my online Christmas shopping began arriving on my doorstop last week:

Notice a familiar emblem on one of those packages?

One that resembles that square at the top of this posting and looks something like this:

Did you see it amongst my packages???

Of course a package from Zulily was delivered at my house, because I’ve been doing A LOT of shopping on Zulily!

I absolutely LOVE, LOVE, LOVE to shop online.  It’s the best way to find a bargain.  Everything at Zulily is a bargain, so it’s my go to place for holiday shopping.  I literally check in every day to see what the latest deals are.  So far we have acquired some building blocks for Banjo on Zulily at around 80% off retail.  This week I’ll There are just so many things at major percentages off that it’s sooooo very difficult to decide just what to get her!  Maybe this adorable shopping cart:

Can you say, “Little Tikes”???

Or a pink truck for her to scoot around on:

Or some holiday books:

There are so many options right now.  I’ll have to check in tomorrow see what the new items are for children at Zulily!  Not shopping for kiddos?  Well, Zulily has way more than just stuff for kids.  I actually bought myself a wool peacoat from there a couple of weeks ago.  It’s gorgeous!  And the price?  Amazing.  $29.  That’s right… only $29!!!

Who wants $10 to start shopping?  Yep $10 for free!!!  Just GO HERE and you will get $10 to start spending at Zulily!

 

This posting was part of my affiliation with Zulily, but all opinions are strictly my own.

Inspire Your Walls {Giveaway} – CLOSED

Disclosure: This could be a sponsored post or contain affiliate links (which means I earn a percentage of the sale), but all opinions are strictly my own.

Inspire Your Walls

When we first moved to Boston, I knew some vinyl wall art was the first thing our apartment needed to make it our own.  I love that vinyl wall décor is such a great option for renters like us, who don’t have the liberties to permanently alter the walls and stairwells, but want to badly to change things up a bit, or personalize the space that is now our lovely home!

Inspire Your Walls is a lovely shop of charming art decals!  I have the privilege of personally knowing Hollie, the owner and designer, and I know that anything she does, she does it well and efficiently!  I’m currently sewing her an ottoman cover she designed, while she is helping me add some cute details to our home! Namely these little duck decals:

As soon as I saw this Three Little Ducks decal, I knew it would be perfect!  If you’ve been to Boston, you know that in Boston Commons, there are these bronze duck statues depicting the mallard ducks in Make Way for Ducklings who decided to raise their family in the Boston Public Garden.  (Here are my boys and their cousins last week on the ducks!)  How thrilled I was so see a vinyl set of ducks for our walls!  Perfectly Boston, and perfect for our kids’ rooms!  Thank you Inspire Your Walls!

Here are some more stickers I think are just darling!  A mess-free pet fish!  Haha, this is the kind of pet I can agree with.

A growth chart that stays in its place and looks so much more professional that pencil markings!

And chalkboard blocks!  Genius!  A place for notes and memos any where you’d like!

And here’s a personal favorite of mine.  Sometimes I really get worked up and anxious over silly things, so I’ve been having to tell myself to calm down, take a breather, and chill!  I’m going to display this up in my sewing room, so that when I start to freak out about tricky seamstress jobs, rush orders, or picky clients, I have a visual reminder to just keep on keeping on and everything will be just fine!

Have you fallen in love with Inspire Your Walls yet?  A lucky winner is going to receive: any item of their choice up to $50!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

*This giveaway is open to US entries only
*The winner of this giveaway will be posted no later than the evening of Friday, October 26th and emailed within 24 hours.  If the winner does not respond within a week, a new winner will be drawn.
*This posting and giveaway were sponsored by Inspire Your Walls, but all opinions are strictly my own

Halloween Decorating Obsessiveness

Disclosure: This could be a sponsored post or contain affiliate links (which means I earn a percentage of the sale), but all opinions are strictly my own.

Can you tell that I have a 4 year-old obsessed with perfect order in all things???

20121002-134625.jpg

Happy October!

Cupcake Liners Wrappers {Giveaway} – CLOSED

Disclosure: This could be a sponsored post or contain affiliate links (which means I earn a percentage of the sale), but all opinions are strictly my own.

Cupcakes!  I love these perfect little cupcake liners and wrappers from CupcakeLinersWrappers.com!  A friend introduced me to this shop a few weeks ago, and I was delighted by all the cute wrappers to look at.  What a fabulous way to decorate your treats in 10 seconds or less!

Imagine the possibilities!  Wrap your little cupcakes in some lovely damask wrappers for a formal event, or a cute polka dot set for a girls night, or some glittery ones for a birthday party!  Besides cupcakes, think about decorating muffins with baby shower liners?  Precious!

After I sent some hot pink glittery wrappers to my sister in law for her birthday, I recently pulled out my black and white ones to take to a sleepover with the teenage girls I mentor from my church.  See how diva we are?

They were a huge hit.  Especially after everyone ate their cupcakes and then wanted to wear the wrappers like little crowns!

And my favorite (tis the season!) are these Halloween options!

     

Just browsing the website makes me want to throw parties!

Start thinking of the next party you’re going to throw, because one lucky winner will receive one dozen wrappers of their choice from CupcakeLinersWrappers!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

*This giveaway is open to US entries only
*The winner of this giveaway will be posted no later than the evening of Friday, October 5th and emailed within 24 hours.  If the winner does not respond within a week, a new winner will be drawn.
*This posting and giveaway were sponsored by Cupcakelinerswrappers.com, but all opinions are strictly my own

Piggy & Dirt {Giveaway} ***ENDED***

Disclosure: This could be a sponsored post or contain affiliate links (which means I earn a percentage of the sale), but all opinions are strictly my own.

If you are a reader of the popular blog NieNie Dialogues like I am then you are already familiar with these gorgeous stained glass stars.   Kurt Knudsen and his wife Becky are the minds and talent behind Piggy & Dirt and these beauties.  The stars are crafted in so many fun colors and styles.  So basically you can find an original star to match any home decor!  It’s the absolutely perfect gift for any mother to show her how much you care!  The stars look great accenting a window, dressing up a wall, hanging in front of a mirror, sitting on a shelf… the list goes on and on for where I could put ’em.  In fact I’m thinking that I really need some red and yellow ones for sun catchers at the kitchen picture window.  Someone tell my audiologist man to do some Mother’s Day shopping for me at Piggy & Dirt, will you?  I thank you.

   

One very lucky winner is going to get to pick a star of choice from Piggy & Dirt!

*This giveaway is open to US entries only.

*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, April 16th. Be sure and check back then to see if you won, so you can claim your prize!
[Read more…]

The Painted Name {Giveaway} ***ENDED***

Disclosure: This could be a sponsored post or contain affiliate links (which means I earn a percentage of the sale), but all opinions are strictly my own.

My children have a very important lady in their young lives.  Her name is Gran and she is my mother.  Thank you all for the good thoughts that have been directed towards her during this difficult time.  I know that I’ve eluded to the fact in recent postings that she is ill.  Until now I haven’t been open on the Dandy with what my mom has, but this particular feature has me thinking of her a great deal.  So I thought that I should fill you in.

At the start of the New Year (when my new baby girl was just 1 week old) my mom was diagnosed with Stage 4 Non Hodgkins Lymphoma.  It came as quite a shock to us all as my mom has always been very healthy.  Sure she has been more tired than normal over the last few years, but we just thought it was because she works full time and has had a lot on her plate with both her parents and my father’s parents.  My paternal grandfather (who was the inspiration for Dandy Giveaway) died suddenly 4 years ago, maternal grandmother had a stroke 3 years ago, paternal grandmother had brain cancer 2 years ago, and my maternal grandfather was just diagnosed with cancer just barely before Thanksgiving.

So we haven’t had an easy time of it.  Through it all my mom has been there for everyone and we are now here for her.  We are rallying behind here.  That’s what being a family is all about!  I’m happy to report that she is tolerating chemotherapy well and we continue to pray for a cure.  It’s going to be a long road, but I have complete faith that my mom can continue to fight this.  She’s a strong woman.  Gran is even still working!  She’s a manager of a bank and this is why I’ve had her on my mind for this feature giveaway.  🙂

When Banjo was born it was important to her to get him his first piggy bank.  What else would a banking Gran think of.  😉  I think everyone has that token gift that they like to give and a piggy bank is the perfect fit for my mom.  I remember her searching high and low for Banjo’s bank.   Who would have thought that it would be so difficult to find a piggy bank?  Well, I have just the place for her to get those piggies from now on.

Isn’t he a cute one?  The Painted Name carries personalized piggy banks to match lots of nursery decors.  Even if you aren’t a bank manager a piggy bank makes a great gift for a new baby!

The Painted Name has plenty of other items perfect for baby gift giving.

How great is this dish set?

 

And be still my heart this mini tea set is adorable!

 

Then…

How cute is this egg for the Easter baskets???

The Painted Name has it all!  Who’s ready for the giveaway?

The winner of this giveaway is going to receive a CUTE personalized piggy bank (a $47 value) from The Painted Name!

 

*** 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 The Painted Name, have a look around, and then tell us your favorite item! (ex: “Dandy Smith = Love the piggy banks! )

(3): Become a follower of The Painted Name Blog through Google Friend Connect or if you already do.  (ex: “Dandy Smith= follow The Painted Name.”)

(4): Like The Painted Name 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, March 4th at 5:00 pm CST.  Be sure and check back on Monday, March 5th 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 The Painted Name, but all opinions are strictly my own.

{Giveaway} SuLu Gifts ***ENDED***

Disclosure: This could be a sponsored post or contain affiliate links (which means I earn a percentage of the sale), but all opinions are strictly my own.

The audiologist man and I were married for almost 6 years before we had Banjo.  During that time we lived in San Antonio and enjoyed furnishing our first home.  One of our favorite purchases was this coffee table:

We thought it was a cool table, because it has all of these great compartments to store books, blankets, throw pillows, etc.  Shortly after buying said table I watched in horror as a little girl who was visiting drove a matchbox car across the top of it.  Now this car didn’t have very good shocks, because metal was all that touched the table!  Of course leaving distress marks that weren’t meant to be there.  I was near tears.  When our guests left audiologist man instantly said that it was going to be okay and it was just a coffee table.  I remember asking him if the girl even realized that she had done harm to a Ralph Lauren coffee table!  He just told me that one day we would have kids and they would ruin things.  To which I replied that we didn’t have kids yet, so we were supposed to have nice things until then.

When Banjo came into our lives Ralph became good at storing toys in the living room:

And unbeknownst to us until the damage was already done…

Ralph became a teething table:

 

Fast forward several years and we still have Ralph.  He may have acquired a few more scratches here and there, but I’m still quite protective over him.  For instance coasters are to always be used on his scratched up surface!  In fact I’m really in need of these ceramic tile coasters to protect Ralph:

Aren’t they gorgeous?  Where can you get them???  Well, I’m going to tell you…

SuLu Gifts!  This shop has so many fun gifts and supplies for your next party.  Totally cute party favors:

 

 

 

How cute are these for Valentine’s Day?

In addition to the ceramic coasters SuLu Gifts also has these unique photo coasters:

Talk about a really unique gift for the person who has everything!  Totally customizable and totally cute!

And guess what’s being given away?  A set of 4 photo coasters personalized with your own photos!

*** This giveaway is open to entries in the US 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 Dandy Giveaway on Twitter (or if you already do) and then tweet about this giveaway.   (ex: “Dandy Smith= twitter and tweet”)

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

(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 SuLu Gifts, have a look around, and then leave a comment telling us your favorite item.  (ex: “Dandy Smith= I love those monogram ceramic tile coasters!”)

(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, February 5th at 5:00 pm CST.  Be sure and check back on Monday, February 6th 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 SuLu Gifts, but all opinions are strictly my own.

{Giveaway} Just Beccuz ***ENDED***

Disclosure: This could be a sponsored post or contain affiliate links (which means I earn a percentage of the sale), but all opinions are strictly my own.

When the audiologist man and I got hitched we were given this really cool red plate that reads “You are special today”.  It’s the perfect addition to someone’s special day.  For the birthday dinner girl or boy.  Or just a day that’s made special by an employment raise or school accomplishment.  Or one that deserves to be special just because.  The red plate is one of my most favorite wedding gifts.  (It has been almost 9 years since it joined our family!)  And it looks spectacular with my yellow and red kitchen decor!  Remind me to share a picture sometime of my kitchen, because I absolutely love my kitchen.  Lots.  Probably because I feel like it’s the only room in our house that’s put together…  Anyway, back to the special plate.  I enjoy things that carry a special meaning, but also are creative and original.  Basically anything that makes someone feel like a lot of work and effort went into it.  Now I’m not saying that I’m the one who puts the a lot of work into things.  I’m not that creative or original!  So when there’s someone who has the knack for that type of thing then they become my new best friend.  Like Becca at the shop Just Beccuz.  Everything in her shop is perfect for making anyone feel extra special!  So without further ado here are my favorites…

I’m a sucker for anything yellow,

so of course this Happy Birthday Banner is a winner in my book!

And don’t even get me started on how much I love monkeys…

This birthday package would complete any monkey themed party!

 Then…

Check out this entire Baby Shower Package:

Isn’t it simply diva divine?

And oh be still my heart:

It’s no wonder that I LOVE this banner!  🙂

Then who could go wrong with this for the newly marrieds:

 Just Beccuz also has handmade cards:

Now that’s extra special!

What’s being given away this week from Just Beccuz?  One lucky winner is going to receive a $25 gift certificate to spend at Just Beccuz!

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

And…

***Open for entries for 2 whole weeks!***

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 Just Beccuz, have a look around, and then tell us your favorite item. (ex: “Dandy Smith = Definitely that yellow Happy Birthday Banner!)

(3): Get Dandy in your inbox! Sign up for our newsletter in the right hand sidebar or if you already have. (ex: “Dandy Smith= newsletter”)

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

(5): Place a Just Beccuz Gifts & Greetings button on your own blog (found in the right sidebar of her blog).  (ex: “Dandy Smith= blog button”)

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

(7): Become a follower of Dandy Giveaway through Google Connect or if you already follow.  (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 for 2 whole weeks!  So from July 18th-July 31st at 5:00 pm CST.  Be sure and check back on Monday, August 1st 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!

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