Letterpress for All Occasions

By Erin

I love, love, love greeting cards.  However, I do not at all like cheesy greeting cards with a sappy message or too many words. I prefer ones that are cute, simple and straight forward – and preferably letter press. I just love the sophisticated look of letter press.  If I’m looking for boxes of things like thank you cards, I turn to Etsy. But for birthday and other cards – like bridal and baby showers – I’m always running to the store at the last minute, sorting through cards, trying to find the LEAST silly one. It’s on a rare occasion when I will think ahead and make it to Papyrus or Target’s card isle.

So when Smudge Ink reached out, promising witty letter press cards for all occasions, that are printed in the USA and are eco-friendly, coming from 100% post-consumer recycled paper, I had to see them.  They sent me a bunch of samples that I instantly fell in love with. And, best of all, they were all under $5.  The paper quality is excellent – very thick – the color is great, and they messages are cute and simple – leaving enough room for you to write a heartfelt note in the card. Check out some of my favorites that they sent me:

card5card4card2card3

 

 

 

 

Pie Inside: Happy Mother’s Day

card4card1

card6

These (and many, many more) can all be ordered directly from Smudge Ink’s site – so I can stock up on upcoming birthday and event cards, so I’m not running to the store at the last minute while we’re literally on the way to an event.   Which means that I will now basically order everything online except for milk and ice cream….  oh, how the internet simplifies my life.

Where are some of your favorite places to buy cards?

 

 

My Spring Shoe Wardrobe

By Erin

In the spring and summer I wear two types of shoes only. TOMS and Rainbow flip flops. I mean, I do own “grown-up” shoes, I just frankly perfect to wear flats, and flats that are comfortable and simple at that.

I do have to say, I’m a sucker for a good CSR program. Totally pulls at the heartstrings. So I started wearing TOMS because I loved everything about their mission. But I’ve continued to wear them because they’re easy and comfortable.

I was SUPER excited a few days ago when an email from Tom’s arrived in my gmail introducing the new Jonathan Adler for TOMS collection. Oh. My. Goodness.  Aren’t they the cutest for spring?! I haven’t decided which ones I’m getting yet, but here are my favorites:

10002013-h

 

10002016-s

These sandals are a HUGE departure from my normal shoe, but they are so cute I may just have to get them!

10002019-h

 

 

If these winter temps could just be on their way, I could comfortably break out my spring shoes and pack up my snow boots!

What we’ve been up to…

By Erin.

So its been a while. We could make excuses, but really, they’d be just that. Excuses. To catch you up on my life, we’ll keep it simple: my baby is growing up (15 months now!), I’m still working full time, running as often as I can manage to sneak away from the house, trying to cook fancy things with no time, oh, and cooking another bun in the oven. Yep. 30 weeks pregnant. I know, I know, that was a bit fast.

I worked very hard to lose the weight after baby number 1, but was saddened to realize how quickly my body exploded with baby #2. So, when we planned a little vacation to Aruba at the end of the second trimester this time round, there was no hope that I was going to squeeze into my regular bathing suits.  I struggled to find something cute that wasn’t a million bucks. You know, it being the middle of the snowiest winter ever and all, no real need for a pricey new maternity suit.

I looked and looked, and finally Old Navy posted a few suite, including a cute  tankini on their site. Now, I’m not normally an Old Navy shopper. I don’t know why, its just not my thing. But last time I was pregnant, I got a maternity bathing suit from there that was so cute, and really, really good quality.  And, most importantly, the price was right. Sadly, I misplaced the top.

So I ordered this one in black for our trip. It was SO cute on. The V-neck covered everything important, but still showed enough cleavage that you didn’t feel like your grandmother.  The small fit perfectly around my large belly. (I was wearing a Small/Medium and size 6 in maternity clothes, if that helps you with the sizing!)

Photo courtesy of Old Navy

I got the matching bottoms in small, which fit perfectly. Covered my rather large bottom AND were low enough in the front to be comfortable below my full belly, but not indecent. The top was a little long on my 5’2″ frame, but not too long – and it NEVER rode up. Also imperative. No embarrassing belly shots!

In fact, I liked it so much I ordered this cute anchor print on express delivery right before we left.

Photo courtesy of Old Navy

Aruba was fantastic. The water was calm and crystal clear, there lots of food options, the beaches were close to the airport, and it was so easy to get around with the baby. It was however, crowded and filled with lots of chain hotels. If it had been just my sweet hubby and I going, I would have opted for something more secluded or adventurous (we went to Belize on our Honeymoon and are DYING to get back), but for traveling with children, this was the perfect beach vacation.  There were always other children around, and at the restaurants, so I never worried about how loud or messy mine was.

We stayed at the Westin, which was nice and a GREAT deal, but it’ll be closing in March and turning into another hotel.

My little chicken ate some sand, swam in the ocean a liiiiittle bit before deciding she hated it, and spent most of her vacation chasing lizards, picking up rocks and playing bocci ball.

Baby T’s Newborn Pictures

By Erin

One of the things that I absolutely wanted was to have newborn photos of Baby T. You know, those ones where the babies are naked and all scrunched up? They’re my FAVORITE.  I asked for recommendations from friends and chose Anne Constance.  Her studio is in West Orange, New Jersey.  She was AMAZING. She shoots in color and black and white, and has a variety of really cute props to use.

I’ll share just a few of Baby T’s photos below.  I mean, seriously.  Have you ever seen anything cuter? If you’re looking for a photographer, Anne is HIGHLY recommended if you’re in the area.

The thing with these photos is that the baby has to be ASLEEP. Like, dead asleep. Anne takes this newborn session during the baby’s first two weeks, when they pretty much just sleep all day long. Guess who chose to be WIDE awake when we arrived at the studio? Oh yes, my child.  But Anne patiently waited an ENTIRE HOUR AND A HALF so that we could lull Baby T. back to sleep. She even helped rock her again and again.  Why she chose that morning to be anti-nap, I don’t know. But I so appreciated Anne’s patience so that we could get the most perfect photos.

If you choose to get newborn pictures, contact the photographer WAY before your due date, so they can hold a spot (even if not an exact date) for you. If they know when you are approximately due, they’ll be able to fill you into their schedule.  Many photographers only do one or two sessions a day, since you need a lot of natural light for newborn photos. I will definitely be giving Anne a call for more photos down the road of Baby T – she does kids and families as well!

Check out her website: http://www.anneconstance.com

PS – baby T is the one on the home page in that ADBORABLE baby bed and ski hat.

This next one is our favorite. I just die over this smirk on her face! Is she dreaming about milk or pooping?

 

It’s Been a Tough Week…

By Erin

By now you have all seen the destruction from last week’s storm on TV, and likely many more of you have seen it firsthand.  If you’ve just seen it on TV, I can assure you: the damage was much, much more widespread than you’ve seen, and its affected many, many more lives than they can show on a newscast.  Lia and I are among some of the luckiest: she never lost power, and my apartment was one of the very, very few first floor apartments in Jersey City that wasn’t decimated by the storm surges and residual flooding.  We are lucky enough to be at the top of very small hill, and our apartment is in the back of the building. So as the water turned streets into rivers, it never made it to our block – even though we’re only 2 blocks from the water, and blocks much further inland were ravaged.  And our neighborhood wasn’t ANYWHERE near as bad as what Lia saw on her trip to the Rockaways to volunteer, or what friends on Staten Island and the Jersey Shore have experienced.

People still don’t have power, heat or hot water, and the temperatures are creeping lower and lower.  We are, very, very thankful and fortunate.

We have done what we can to give back, and are continuing to do so.  I also know that many of you are looking for ways to give back.  There are plenty of ways to donate, such as the Red Cross: redcross.org/hurricane-sandy and the NJ Community Food Bank: https://community.njfoodbank.org/sslpage.aspx?pid=506.  If you know of other good, reputable organizations looking for donations, please, please leave the link in the comments.

 

If you’re in NYC and looking to donate items, Lia and I do know a few people collecting items in NYC that will be sent to families and communities, so let us know, and we can tell you where to bring stuff to.

If you’re to donate directly to someone or a local small business that’s been affected, our friend Kristen, the owner of Kanibal Home, who’ve we’ve written about on this blog many times before, suffered devastating damage to her boutique from flooding.  Her friends set up a Facebook page to help herrebuild her livelihood. Today they posted that Kristen learned that her insurance wouldn’t cover any of the damage from the storm. I popped by today to check in – Kristen was hard at work repairing the store, which was seriously damaged.  If you’d like to help a local store owner get back on her feet, check out the Facebook page, or ChipIn page where you can donate to Kanibal Home’s recovery.

 

Giveaway: Jonathan Adler Bottle Stoppers

By Erin

Friends! We have a giveaway today, courtesy of The Well Dressed Home.

We are giving away this pair of adorable Jonathon Adler bottle stoppers!  We know that many of you out there LOVE Jonathan Adler just as much as we do.  His things make the perfect gifts, or make a cute addition to any shelf or table.  (You should know that I love all things random, anything that’s in an animal shape, and of course, things that don’t match anything else. So…. Jonathan Adler things are right up my alley.)

Here’s the pair we’re giving away to one lucky winner. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Here’s how you win!

First, Like us on Facebook if you don’t already.

Second, leave a comment on THIS BLOG POST saying what your favorite type of wine is! We’ll pick a winner on Monday, August 13th. 

You can find these quirky stoppers (that retail for $16.95 each) along with tons of other neat home-y items items and gifts via the Well Dressed Home. Check it out next time you’re looking for a housewarming or hostess gift.

Seattle’s Best Red Cup Challenge

By Erin

Anyone out there who LOVES fancy coffee drinks? Ever make your own at home and think its pretty darn good? If so, we wanted to pass on some information about a new coffee contest by Seattle’s Best – which has some pretty serious prizes!

The coffee maker has teamed up with celebrity chef Jeff Mauro to launch the Red Cup Showdown – a coast-to-coast search at state fairs and on Seattle’s Best Facebook page to find the most imaginative new coffee drink. If you’ve made up your own coffee beverage at home that you just love, this contest is looking for you – and your recipe.  To enter the contest, “Like” the “Red Cup Showdown” on Facebook here.  You’ll see a big button at the bottom of the page that says Submit Your Recipe. Follow the instructions to submit your recipe there.

If you happen to be heading to a state fair in California, Ohio, Wisconsin, Illinois and Iowa, you can compete in person at live demonstrations.  More information can be found on Facebook about those opportunities too.

And what can you win? Blue ribbon winners from each state fair and the Facebook winner will receive $500, free coffee for a year, and will be sent to New York City in late August to battle for the grand prize – $10,000 and the chance to have their coffee drink featured at Seattle’s Best Coffee locations nationwide.

Good Luck!

 

 

Pretty|Delicious Will Return Tomorrow

Currently our office is approaching the 100-degree mark. Nothing productive happens when its 100 degrees indoors. So in the meantime, enjoy this picture of ice cream that our company bought us to try and keep cool. It helped for 15 minutes. Then we went back to trying not to pass out.

Out on the Town: Young Survival Coalition’s Annual Gala

As you may remember, Lia and I met at our day jobs. The company we work for are huge supporters of a charity called The Young Survival Coalition.

 

It’s an amazing organization that helps young women – those under 40 – who have been diagnosed with or are survivors of breast cancer.  YSC offers resources, connections and outreach so women feel supported, empowered and hopeful.

Lia and I have participated in fundraisers for the organization over the years, and last night was no exception. We were lucky enough to accompany our company’s CEO to the annual “Living In Pink” Gala, which was a Casino night.  We had a blast gambling with fake money, and were moved by the stories of women our own age battling this disease.  To learn more, check out their website here.  They have 30 affiliates across the United States!