Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Are you still here?

Come on over to my new feed, friends!
I'd hate for you to miss this week- what with the Pleated Poppy giveaway going on today, a mushy tribute to my husband on our anniversary tomorrow and the grand opening of my new monogramming shop on Monday (discount codes for blog readers, of course!).

Basically, I'm bribing you.
And I'm not above a little bribery. Just ask my kids.

Monday, April 26, 2010

Attn: Google Followers, Feed Readers and the Like

Hey folks,
First of all, THANKS for wanting to read this blog on a regular basis. I only thought that would be my mom  and I sure appreciate it!
Second, I've switched to a wordpress blog as of this weekend and will be posting there. The feed from Blogger will not continue, so please subscribe at the new site: theothermama.com to get the updates!

Email me at theothermama1(at)gmail.com if you have any questions.

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Favorite Preggers Questions


AH CHUNG, BABY (or whatever all the warnings in 5 languages for parts for children under 3 have)!

Friday Favorites is taking a vacation this Friday. Because 1) I'm going to a wedding and will be OOT (that's out of town if you are not hip- I'm pretty sure I'm not because I just said "hip") and 2) my lovely and talented friend and blog designer Deanna will be plucking the eyebrows on this here blog over the weekend, so in case you did have a link, it wouldn't be working. Which would be a plum shame.
You get 2 weeks to think about your favorite thing and I can't wait to see them then!

: : : : : : : : :

I love being pregnant; really I do. I feel like I'm taking part in a miracle and it is awesome. I also realize that life now is MUCH EASIER than when the baby will arrive, so I'm thankful for this prep time.

But life as a pregnant woman has it's challenges (besides the no alcohol portion). The funniest thing to me is the way that people gawk look at you and then feel compelled- as if a magnetic field is making them- to ask you questions about your pregnancy.

Here are some of my "favorites":
1) What are you having?
I answered "a baby" to a very confused Staples check out girl last week. And went along my merry way.

Really, I wanted to do that, but then I felt guilty and told her I was just joking, etc.
Danggit- I wish I was meaner sometimes.

2) When are you due?
3) When are you due?
4) When are you due?

End of July.
End of July.
End of July.
(If it wasn't annoying as all get out I would type 42 of those here, but it's starting to feel like writing sentences.)

5) Are you excited?
How am I supposed to answer that? That is the oddest question to me. Of course you're excited. Nervous. Daily have the beJesus scared out of you wondering how in the world THREE children fit in that Target bus thing.
You know- normal thoughts.

6) How are you feeling?
The correct answer here is fine. The real answer would require 45 minutes of your time and several creams and demonstrations of their placements. Or a pull down map of the back to point of pressure points. None of us would prefer that.
Let's just go with "fine".

7) Are the boys excited?
They have no clue what's going on. They are 2 and 4 year old males who think "tomorrow" is 4 light years away, so 3 more months will never actually happen to them. I bet they think this is all made up and I just ate a basketball.

8) You have really gotten BIG!
Thanks for noticing. YOU, TOOOO!!!
(Again, if only I was mean.) What I usually respond to this (I get it A LOT) is "yes- that's how it happens" or something with a smile and a dagger.

I know I've mentioned this before, but it bears repeating: You don't have to ask a pregnant person about their pregnancy (especially their 3rd). They most likely want to talk about something else because a dozen people before you have asked all the same questions. And I KNOW people are happy for you, want to be excited with you, are oozing pink out of their ears with love and joy, etc.
But what did we talk about before I resembled a large pot-bellied pig?
Small talk is fine- honest. You can do it.

And if you touch my belly I touch yours. Those are the rules.

What is your "favorite" pregnancy question that you've heard?
Been asked?
Always try to avoid?

This post is linked to my pal Jill's Things I Love Thursday. I love her and you will, too. :)

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Monogramming Fun

It's a Monogramming Monday and a Top Ten Tuesday all rolled into one; just think of it as a combo meal- supersized. You know I'm starting this monogramming business (site planned to launch May1) and things around here have been a bit crazier than usual. Seeing as how I still have another job, 2.75 children and one whole husband, something has got to give and it might be the blawg this week. But I still love you! Really I do! I'm trying to do it all, but failing miserably.

Can I make it up to you by showing you some of the fun designs and monograms I've done this week?
I hoped you might like that.

In no order whatsoever, here are my Top 10 Favorite Monogramming jobs this week:

1. Placemats for my friend Dana who I promised would not have her hands in the picture.
Harrington Font on khaki placemats

2. Cutest little tutu outfit you've ever seen.
pink frilly outfit with tutu

This design originally had a flower in the center of the tutu, but the friend/ customer (HOLY COW! I HAVE THOSE!!) requested that I put her daughter's initial instead and I love it!
tutu on pink frilly shirt

3. Alright. Hold your horses, Alabama people.
Yes- I found a vendor tonight and will have these in stock ASAP.
No- I don't LOVE doing them, but I can manage. :)
Houndstooth basket

4. These next 2 shirts were for a sweet friend (and blog reader- special perks, you see?) who needed a little fun cross
Cross on frilly shirt

and a little something girly for navy and I think this turned out just right!
Marie frame

5. This mom and friend is hysterical because the following was our conversation:

Her: I like it big.
I like it to pop.
I like it girly.
I want her name on it.

Me: What about font or color or size or applique or fabric or.....?

Her: Whatever you want that fits into the above categories.

How much fun is that? So I came up with this circle lollipop (that is supposed to have a ribbon bow on top of the lollipop stick and below the sucker portion that I couldn't get in time but WILL get) for all of the above!
And she loved it!

6. I love this pillow sham.
I love the little Wilson-esque model behind it more, but the sham sure did make me happy.
Mark font on pillow sham

7. We took this as a birthday present to a swimming party yesterday.
It's a swim coverup. Get it?
Themes are A#1 in my book.
Amber font on swim cover up

8. These bloomers are for Ollie's girlfriend. I sent them home with her via backpacks before I monogrammed it to make sure it was the right size.
Her mom and I got so tickled at the "scandal" of  her "leaving her bloomers at our house"!
Oh my. I think we'll leave that joke for college.
Empire monogram on bloomers

9. The same friend from the Nate sham above requested 5 onesies for her niece-to-be. She wanted her name and initials on several, but gave me free license for a couple of them.
I loved this little birdie so much that I made two! I'm sure you'll never guess who the second one is for.
Sweet Tweet

Her niece's name will be Eloise, but they are going to call her Lou. How cute is that?
So I made "Lou" as girly as it deserves to be!
Lullaby frame

10. Last but not least, a couple of tote bags. My friend called and mentioned that she loved this bag at Tar-jhay. So I picked it up for her and gave it a fun twist! (H is for her last name; I promise it's not for me, but I would love it!)
black diagonal tote

And this giraffe tote is for my mother-in-law. Talk about pressure! She said, "just something fun and cute". I hope this hits the mark.
Giraffe tote

So you can see I've been a little busy bee this week. And hoping to stay that busy!

What do you think I should add to the store?
Anything that you can think of that I haven't shown or mentioned already? (I DO have a lot more things, but I'd love your ideas.)
Do you have a favorite item this week?

Thanks so much for your input and patience with me as I make this addition to our lives. Not the baby; I've forgotten about that poor 3rd child- the business, of course. 

This post is linked to my friend Amanda's Top Ten Tuesday at OhAmanda.

Thursday, April 15, 2010

Friday Favorites: Just a Swangin'

This week has been an absolutely perfect weather week in the South. It's been like every scene of Steel Magnolias except for the musical overtures and without Dolly Parton cutting hair, but pretty much like the rest of it.

So each day after pre-school, the boys have been outside to have a "popsicle party" and swing. My favorite thing this week has been seeing our usually sweet boys have so much fun outside. They love it! And they are at such great ages right now for playing together. I really hope we don't go and throw off the dynamics around here in 3 months...
Wait. Nevermind.

Back to being happy and things being easy, the boys love each other and crack up whenever they are swinging at the same time. (For some reason we called this "being in the same bathtub" when we were kids. Did y'all or am I completely dreaming that?)

Swinging 2

Henry's absolute favorite thing to do is swing. He directs me EACH TIME to the proper swing and ALWAYS asks to swing "highest of all".
H swinging

Ollie is such a big man. I'm actually the teensiest, tiniest bit sad that he has learned how to pump himself. Even though he still likes to be pushed, he "can do it by himself". But since he also says that about brushing his teeth, I'm not betting the farm on it.
O swinging

Please, oh please, let my children remember these days and not the days where they see more movies in the car and bribery sub-par parenting techniques than the pre- Super Nanny families.

These are the times I'm going to choose to remember. I'm trying to take little snapshots in my mind of them at this age because I know it won't last forever. Even on the craziest and busiest of days full of yelling, time outs and lost shoes, I know they won't always need me, so I'm trying to enjoy it while it lasts.

What's your favorite thing this Friday?
Spring clothes? A pedicure (JEALOUS!)?
Spring cleaning over (can you come over here)? Favorite recipe?
Favorite new trick to get your cousin-who-can't-stop-talking off the phone?

Write about it on your blog and link your post (not your whole blog) below (follow the easy instructions).
Please sure to direct folks back here to check out the other Friday Favorites and go give them a friendly hello! Because it's Friday and we all need a little TLC to make it to the weekend.

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

The Bigger the Boys

Since I'm starting a monogramming business, I've had a lot of boxes delivered here lately with items for inventory.
Today Ollie said, "I wish that 'PS' man would bring us more boxes so we could build a house".

When Jason got home I was telling him about the "PS" man and he had a brilliant idea! Why in the world hadn't we used that huge box that the embroidery machine came in for the kids to play? So that's just what we did.

Hours of entertainment
April 10.3 021

provided by one big box with a door.
April 10.3 022

But I was quickly kicked out because (believe it or not) I'm a GIRL!
April 10.3 026

But that's not the only toy my boys had to play with tonight.

Tonight they dressed in the colors of a Toys R Us store and played with a new iPad.
April 10.3 036

Let me be very clear: we do NOT own one of these contraptions.
Jason's co-worker lent him one to experiment with.
April 10.3 039

I'm pretty sure we couldn't buy anything with that name.
REALLY? What were they thinking? I thought you had more in you, Apple. Can you think of a worse name?

And just what was this new, high-tech, fancy machine capable of?

Drawing trains.
April 10.3 041

Good thing we didn't have a coloring book; I'd hate for the kids to have to WORK for their trains.

So our night ranged from low-tech to super poorly named high-tech.
Do you love tech-y toys at your house?

I'll admit we got a TiVo when they first came out and can't live without it (it's right below shelter and water on that survival chart from 5th grade as far as I'm concerned). And I'm married to a gadget lover (aren't all men??), so we have a few toys around here.

What's on your Inspector Gadget Wish List?

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Lisa Leonard Jewelry Giveaway Winners

Thank you so much to all of you for entering the Lisa Leonard Jewelry giveaway!
Random.org has spoken and the lucky winners are:

Commenter #88- Sarah
Commenter #17- Susan V

Check your email, girls!

If you are not a lucky weiner, then you can still save 10% on your total Lisa Leonard jewelry purchase by using code hillary10. Don't forget her last day to order before Mother's Day is April 28th!

Monday, April 12, 2010

What's in a Name?

When naming children, you have to consider several important things: spelling (will they have to spell their name their whole lives?), initials (Jason went to school with a girl whose name was similar to Anna Suzanne Smith- rough upper elementary years...) and whether or not it rhymes with any potty or mild curse words (let's just say my maiden name rhymed with a lovely bodily function, okay? Not that you can change that, but it did come up in the "banana fana fo" whatever song).

Naming children is especially tough. For us, we have used family names to get in as many wills as possible because we like for their names to have roots. And we like to recycle. Just consider it a green name.

Another tradition we have is that we keep the name a surprise until the child is born: thus the reason you may have seen my mother leaving snide remarks about our new baby-to-be's name in the comments section. She hates this. HATES it as much as not sending a thank you note- OR MORE. Maybe as much as not wearing a slip to church, but I'm not sure exactly where it is on her spectrum of things that irk her.

The reason we do this is because people like to comment before a child is born on their name as if it's still up for discussion when it most likely is not. Or else they say something like, "Sadie? That's our dog's name! I love it!" and then you have to go back to the drawing board. So, we figure that no one can say anything bad about a baby they are holding and it's fun to have at least ONE surprise.

Another naming issue was coming up with a business name. How in the world do you do that?
We tossed around The Other Mama Monogramming but it sounds like Charlie Brown's teacher has a studder when you say it out loud. I'll wait. Go ahead.

So, after much discussion, the name of the business is: Mint Julep Monograms.
You like? Kinda Southern, kinda sassy, makes me thirsty... you know, the important things.
(Please keep in mind I already own the domain, things are printed with this and it's not changing. Kind of like you're holding my business baby in your hands, so please don't tell me your dog is named this.)

I'm having so much fun with my big honkin' machine and all the fun fabric! Here are a few projects I did this weekend (minus a few t-shirts that I forgot to take pictures of before I gave to a friend yesterday, but I will be showing up at her house with my camera because I'm pushy like that. And  minus the hat that I'm currently wearing, thus making it impossible to take a picture of it; I'm sure it will be in some pics soon.):

A cute little girls bag for church (crumbled up goldfish on the bottom not included)
BTW, I have a few of these in stock if you're interested.
Church bag

A fun pirate T-shirt for a friend whose 4 year old wanted a "Pirate skull and cross bones t-shirt" and whose mommy didn't want something with fiery flames and the devil on it. I think this is a good compromise! I love it and O-man will be sporting one very soon, too!
Pirate T-shirt

This weekend I also went to a baby shower for a sweet little boy who will be here any day! And I was so excited to give my first "homemade" gifts!
Isn't this argyle, fun? I can put cute girly fabrics in there, too!
Boy argyle baby onesie

I love a brown bib because it doesn't show all the crud that actually gets on a bib!
I have them in pink and blue trim, as well.
Chocolate and mint burp cloth and bib

And then I had to make a little something for me, right? These kitchen towels are great and I already washed and dried them all so you wouldn't get a cute towel with something on it that looked like a raisin after you washed it. I've had that happen several times and it's not what you would call cute.
Cross Kitchen towel

So that's my weekend in review. I might consider a Monogramming Monday update on a semi-regular basis if you are interested. If not, just tell me that's your dog's name and I'll get the hint.

How was your weekend? Any fun spring projects?

Thursday, April 8, 2010

Friday Favorites: Lisa Leonard GIVEAWAY

This giveaway is now closed and the winners are announced here. Thanks!

I'm sure you've heard by now that I'm expecting.
She will be a beauty, I'm sure.

She will never talk back, always do what I ask her to do and always represent our family proudly.

That's because she's a necklace.
Family Crest Necklace
A new one that I ordered from my friend Lisa who makes the most fabulous jewelry. I love to wear it and most likely have something of hers on almost every day.
Blissdom 5
I think it's safe to say it's my favorite and it should be yours, too.

If you are fortunate enough to have lovely, well- behaved children like I do, you need to hop on over to her website and pick out something for your husband to get you for Mother's Day. Lisa even said you all could have a 10% discount (one of my favorite words!) on your entire purchase with the code "hillary10".
But you tell that hubs to hurry because the last day to order for Mother's Day is April 28th.
Do you hear me, husbands? You will score big with some Lisa Leonard, OK? Easy enough!

For now, though, not one, but TWO wonderful readers are going to get a nice personalized Family Crest Necklace just like that one up there for FREE!

Here's how to enter to win:
* Leave a comment on this post (not on facebook or anywhere else; click comments in orange below, type about your undying love of Lisa or something similar and click publish- simple)
* Another entry if you link a post to the Friday Favorites linky below! That's 2 chances! Please leave a second comment to say something like, "I'm on the linky, give me the jewelry" or anything catchy would work.
* If you don't have a blog and would like a second chance to win, you can become a Facebook Fan of The Other Mama. (See that cute little box with all the facebook faces smiling at you over there?) Then leave a 3rd comment with something like, "Good grief. I really NEEEED some jury (that's how we say jewelry in Alabama). Hook a sista up." And that's 3 chances!!! (If you are already a FB Fan, you can just leave a comment telling me so and what you had for breakfast or something.)
* Puh-LEASE leave your email address or blogger information with your comment. I'd hate for you to win and me not be able to get in touch with you.
* I'll choose 2 winners at noon next Tuesday and email you to let you know and also post them at the top of this post.

To participate in Friday Favorites:
* Write your own post about a favorite thing of yours- anything!
* Make sure that you say your post is linked to Friday Favorites and link back here so other people can hop around.
* Blog hop and make new friends. Drinks are optional in your own little computer party; fun is required.

Wednesday, April 7, 2010


Quick Announcement: Be sure to remember Friday Favorites tomorrow (Thursday night around 10 CDT is when I'll put the linky list up)!

There will be a GIVEAWAY from someone very lovely (who- from my survey earlier- was YOUR favorite giveaway as well). You will be able to enter to win in the comments section AND get an additional entry by linking your Friday Favorites post!

Quick Update: Y'all are absolutely amazing. Thanks for your encouraging and supportive response about the new monogramming business! I already have a lot of orders and am flabbergasted!

Quick Count: I'm not 82 although I just used the word "flabbergasted". I'm 31.
Going on 82.

Quick Reveal: Okay, fine. The giveaway tomorrow is from Lisa Leonard. You know I love her. You're going to love her, too, if you don't already!

Quick Pics: Here are some fun shots of my guys from their school Easter Egg Hunt.

Henry quickly learned the shake- shake- shake method
Easter Egg Hunt 3

Then just as quickly learned the shove-in-your-mouth-before-someone-realizes-it's-10AM method.
Easter Egg Hunt 2

Ollie was just happy that he found some eggs (you know how well they are hidden for 4 year olds, right? It looked like a Vietnam mine field of eggs.)
Easter Egg Hunt 1

And he's happy to still be with his woman; he's had the same girlfriend for 3 years. There has been talk of break ups and not getting married, but I think they're on the "ins" again. Although another girl did send him a love note. (Scandal in 4K! Someone call 90210 and tell them about a pre-school edition!)
O and his woman

Off to start their wedding monogrammed gifts.

See you tomorrow for Friday Favorites and the GIVEAWAY!

A One Legged Man

Y'all. I'm busier than a one legged man in a butt kicking contest.

You know I mentioned starting a monogramming business. Well I am. And I'm SO (I'm going to resist the urge to write "sew") excited about it. But there is so much to learn!

I'm trying to grasp monogramming fonts, applique, product vendors, designing a website, new software terminology, learning how to operate my big, honkin' machine (that I love so much I want to marry) and which products to carry.

Here are some of the items that I already have in stock or will have in stock ASAP:

Gifts for you, your friends or tweens (overnight duffle bag)

Merci Overnight Duffle- RUI

Awesome Mother's Day gifts or Suck up to Your Kid's Teacher ideas:
Large Market Tote

Cute totes and hooded baby towels:
Giraffe Tote bag
Colored hooded towel

Lots and lots of adorable and thick baby bibs, burp cloths and general baby accessories (like diaper covers and boxers for boys):
Hampton Stripe Bib
Really soft and sturdy beach/ pool towels in stripes and cute patterns
Cabana stripe beach towels

I'm also going to have a big selection of great graduation gifts (towel wraps, laundry bags, garment bags, etc). Oh- and kitchen and linen towels, too! There is so much out there it's really hard to control oneself.

Here are the big questions:
What would you like to purchase in a monogramming store?
What are your favorite gifts to give and receive?
What is something that you are always looking for but can't ever find?
Do you think I'm crazy for starting an online business when I'm about to have my 3rd child? WAIT... don't answer that one.
I even had my first order this week! A friend needed some towels monogrammed as gifts and I was happy to oblige. She was brave enough to be my first customer, but they turned out pretty good if I do say so!
kitchen towel

I'm also doing all kinds of applique and testing out different stores. I want to have lots of cute children's options- since I have some (sometimes cute) children myself, you know, and  happen to know that there are A LOT of cheesy things out there. Here is a T-shirt in action tonight for Henry to wear to school. It has a cool guitar and his name.

applique guitar

So, if you are in Huntsville and want something monogrammed, let me know! I should have the website up and running by May 1st, but for now will take local orders (or others if you really see something up there that you can't live without or something similar). I can't wait to show y'all the website, do giveaways and really get going.

For now, though, it's back to the butt kicking contest of getting started. I'll keep you updated on the score!

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