Creating Success Around the World - Robin from The T-Shirt Diaries

It's time for another edition of Creating Success Around the World!!!!  If you'd like to be featured in an upcoming edition, please email me at domesticdeadline@gmail.com.

This is a fun blog hop to help us all get to know a bit more about some of my favorite bloggers.  If you don't already know her, I'd love for you to meet Robin and join in the blog hop!!!!

1.  What do you create? I make dresses and bags out of pre-loved t-shirts for girls and boys. I also make a ton of hair accessories.

2.  Why do you create? It destresses me. I grew up wanting to be a fashion designer and always made little clothes for my barbies. I also love the idea of taking something pre-loved and giving it new life. I love upcycling and challenging myself to see what I can come up with.

3.  Do you sell your creations?  If so, where, how and is it profitable? I do an occasional craft show and sell a lot of my products at local stores. I have an etsy site, but do not spend any time updating it. I don't even think I have anything on the site right now. I feel like a crafting slacker.

4.  What mistakes have you made or lessons have you learned? I am not a craft show kind of girl. There is a lot of effort into setting up a booth at a craft fair, not to mention the cost if you do infact get accepted to a show. Clothes really don't sell because I have different sizes and different styles. It is a very specific audience that is looking for what I sell, and they are usually not going to craft shows to find it.  I prefer being in a local store, yes you loose some profit (40-50%) but you don't have to do as much work to get your product sold.

I have also learned that it is important to have a lot of inventory, something I often times do not have. I am working on it.

5.  What, to you, is success?  Have you achieved it yet or are you on your way towards success? Success is the ability to pay for all my crafting supplies with my profits. I am working my way, the next stop is actually setting up an ETSY shop and putting products in it.

6.  So what's next? I have another round of Project Recycled coming up on my blog the first week in April! I am really excited because we have contestants from around the world competing in this contest strictly devoted to upcycling! It is a marvelous experience and I am so excited to be able to do another round. Oh yeah and congratulations for wining the first season of Project Recycled you rock star ;)

Peace be with you,


Blender Goodness Part 2

I'm still on a smoothie kick, trying to make healthy drinks to boost my fruit and veggie intake.  I've had a few of the Green Detox Smoothies now and was ready to try something new.  I've got a few more to try that I marked in Pinterest and a few I've been thinking about on my own... maybe this will be the start of a "Smoothie Series"...  Let me know what you think and if you'd like to see more!

I had to get out the big blender for my smoothie today, but it was worth it!  I think I'm going to make this one for the "Grills" as O-man calls them, when they get home from school.  It's chilly out, and this one would be a great cool summer treat, but I've got everything ready and I'd like to use up the ingredients.

Imagine it with a pretty umbrella... I don't have any...
It's hard to tell in the picture and with the blue cup, but it is actually a light green color.

Spinacolada (adapted from someone's comment on another recipe)
1/2 can (14oz) of Coconut Milk
1 c fresh pineapple cubed
1 banana
1 c Greek style yogurt, I used plain
1 c fresh baby spinach, I remove all the stems because sometimes my blender doesn't get them smooth
1T vanilla extract
crushed ice

Blend everything together, add a splash of water or oj if you need a bit more liquid to get the blender going. Enjoy while pretending you are on a tropical island!

Don't forget to stop by tomorrow for the World Wide Blog Hop and check here to see how to win a fabulous new gardening product!

Peace be with you,


Blender Goodness

My quest for healthy eating is continuing.  Hopefully, my children will eventually pick up on it and join me.  I'm currently down 10 pounds since the beginning of the year and while I have stalled a bit, I've maintained, which I'm pleased with.  Maintenance is my plan through the Easter holiday break and then I'll aim for a few more pre-summer pounds to disappear. 

Beefing up on the fresh fruits and veggies has been key for me.  I stumbled upon a interesting smoothie recipe on Pinterest and before I knew it, I'd started a new board, Blender Goodness, with several recipes I want to try.  I had most of the ingredients for this one:

So I whipped one up this afternoon.  I didn't have kale on hand so my version was:
1 cup fresh spinach, 1 banana, 1 pear, 1 cup orange juice and 1 cup of ice.  Blend and enjoy.  Believe it or not you can't taste the spinach, it was so yummy and refreshing!  Four servings of fruits and vegetables in one delicious drink!  Look how pretty it is too:
Peace be with you,


Improving Homes Together

This is a Sponsored post written by me on behalf of Pfister for SocialSpark. All opinions are 100% mine.
If you're an HGTV junkie like me, you've heard of Rebuilding Together by now.  If you've been living under a rock, here's the readers digest version:  A national nonprofit organization to rebuild the homes and lives of America's low-income homeowners that has worked on over 100,000 homes across the nation in the past 30+ years with the help of over 3 million volunteers.
Sounds good, right?  I think so and so does Pfister, a leader in the plumbing industry.  You can't do home improvement without occasionally dealing with some sort of plumbing issues.  Many people will call in the big guns for this, but personally, blow torches are fun!!!
So, where am I going with this?  Well, I love a good DIY home improvement project, but not everyone can take care of things themselves, due to funds, knowledge or whatever.  Pfister is pledging to donate $1.00 to Rebuilding Together for everyone who "likes" them on Facebook, a pretty easy way to help in my opinion.  I've already "liked" them, you can too here: Pfister Facebook page
Whitney 2
Pfister has a goal of reaching enough "likes" to donate $20,000 worth of building materials to Rebuilding Together to help communities around our nation improve their homes and their lives.  Don't have a Facebook account?  Don't worry, there are other ways to help, just go to Friends of Pfister campaign site for more information.
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How Does Your Garden Grow?

This is a Sponsored post written by me on behalf of Scotts® for SocialSpark. All opinions are 100% mine.

Typically, mine doesn't, but I just keep trying!  Eventually, something's gotta grow, right?  Last year we had our front step expanded.  We had a little empty space that the roof over the door covered, but not porch space there.  The mason mixed the cement by hand, it wasn't even enough of a space to warrant bringing in cement.  But, it made a huge difference and now there is space for the kids to stand out of my way when I'm trying to open the door in the rain... we all know how that is...

With this expanded porch, I've recently thought it would be great to put a planter that hangs from the railing on there now.  I think this is the spring to finally do it!  Since my thumb isn't exactly green, I'm going to try the new Miracle-Gro Expand 'n Gro, a revolutionary concentrated potting soil that expands up to 3X when water is added, feeds the soil for up to 6 months and improves the soil for years to come.  Plus, holds 50% more water than traditional soil and produces 3X the vegetables or flowers.

EnG Product Shot.png

Check it out for yourself at Expand ‘n Gro™ and get a $3 off coupon.  You can also check out this quick video to see the great benefits of Expand 'n Gro

Now, here's the great part, I get to give away a sample!  Want to win some and try it out for yourself?  Here's what you need to do to enter, follow me on the new Linky Followers and leave me a comment saying you have.  Be sure to include your email address so I can contact the winner!  Hurry, enter by April 7th, 2012!


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World Wide Blog Hop

I apologize,  my interview for this week didn't pan out and I wasn't able to get another one together on time.  So, I'll answer the questions myself!  Please feel free to link up, meet some new bloggers and check out some awesome bloggers!  Don't forget to follow people in the new linky followers since not everyone has Google Friend Connect anymore (only blogger platforms).

Our hosts this month are:

Here goes:
Hi! I'm Emily from Domestic Deadline (guess you already knew that ;).  I have 3 wonderful kids and the deadline is, eventually the youngest one will be in school full time..... I've got to get the hang of this house work stuff by then, but crafts and fun kids stuff keep getting in the way!
What do you create?
Well, it depends on the day really!  I really love to upcycle and for quite a while now, I've been avoiding craft stores, trying to work with what I already have on hand, which unfortunately for my family, is A LOT!!!  I sew, I crochet, I scrapbook, I bake, you name it.  My most recent upcycling projects helped me win the first ever Project Recycle.
Why do you create?
 To get the ideas out of my head!  Seriously, I get an idea and sometimes I literally can't do anything else until I get that idea made.  It's OCD, Obsessive Crafting Disorder, otherwise known as the wrong kind of OCD to my husband, it's the kind that does NOT make me obsessed with cleaning and scrubbing the house.
Do you sell your creations?  If so, where, how, is it profitable?
I do!  I have an Etsy shop, HarperNCo.  Right now, I have character hats in there but I have some fun new ideas I'm working on and hope to get some of that new stuff in there soon.  I've been working on some boy-ish things... he's into superheros now, that's my hint for you!  
I don't make a fortune on Etsy, but I do use it to donate to the foundation that supports the research for my sweet nephew who suffers from Neutropenia.  You can learn more about this at my sister's site LongRace4Tate, read her UpTates, you'll laugh, you'll cry, you'll be as inspired by my sister as I am.

What mistakes or lessons have you learned?
Right now my mistake is not putting pictures in this interview, but I'm on a time crunch!  I got a speeding ticket and have to go to court in a bit, so hopefully I will get back to it and add some pictures and answer this question better!  Oh, I've learned I use the exclamation point an awful lot today!!!!!
What, to you, is success?  Have you achieved it yet or are you on your way?
To me, success is being happy with who you are, where you are in life and proud of where you're headed.  I'd like to think I have achieved that, I'm constantly trying to teach that to my children, life is what you make of it.  God made you an individual, make him proud.
So, what's next?
Hopefully not jail (that traffic ticket, got flustered, couldn't find my insurance card right in front of me...)  No, seriously, I'd really like to do more with my Etsy shop and grow my blog, all while hopefully actually getting my house in order (I made good progress this week, cleaning out kids toys).  Recently people have been asking if I teach lessons, so that might have to be in the works....

Peace be with you,


Spring is in the Air!!!!

This is a Sponsored post written by me on behalf of Bulbs. Dig, Drop, Done. for SocialSpark. All opinions are 100% mine.

Here in the north east, we had little to no winter, I'm not complaining at all!  I'm just hoping the beautiful weather continues.  Over the years, every spring, I've tried to plant in my back yard, I usually try to do fruits and veggies, but a few flowers also.  I've pretty much given up, luckily we have a great CSA for our produce so the few strawberries we'll get this year will just be bonus.

The only thing that has grown without a bit of problem in my back yard are the bulbs my mom put in my back yard.  This year I am hoping to freshen up my front yard a bit and even though we don't get much sun there, maybe I'll have better luck.  I was just checking out Dig Drop Done and in addition to some funny videos that entertained my kids, I was able to search for bulbs that grow in full shade!  I'm so excited after seeing how easy it is to plant and grow bulbs.  visit www.digdropdone.com to learn more

Plus, Dig Drop Done is sponsoring a contest with Taniya Nayak going on until April 15!  The winner will receive a $5000 yard makeover with Taniya, how cool would that be?!?!?!  I'm going to take a picture of my yard now to enter at Curbside Chaos

In addition to all this, for every twitter share of this contest, $1.00 will be donated to Rebuilding Together.

I love Evelyn's video advice for planting bulbs that animals will leave alone, wouldn't that be helpful if I could get veggies to grow.  What will you grow in your garden this year?

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Project Recycle - Winner

So, I went to find this post to add to a linky party and realized I'd never published it!!!!!  Then I went back and realized, I have a few posts that are written but I did the same thing, saved it but didn't publish it!   If you missed this over at The T-Shirt Diaries below is my winning entry - shower curtain turned Easter dresses!  Thanks again to Robin for such a great contest, I really loved participating.
 *     *     *     *     *
April Showers bring Easter Dresses?!?!?
I am so excited (and surprised) to have made it to the final round!  For this project I started with a fabric shower curtain that I picked up for $5 at the thrift store.  Aside from it being a large amount of nice fabric, I loved the top panel with embroidered flowers.
Every time I laid the curtain out to take a picture, a little boy tried to roll up in it, so this was the best I got...

I talked with my girls about what they wanted their dresses to look like, we sketched them out and then I cut... first, I cut out the front of one dress, using a similar style dress as a guide.  The back panel is the same shape, but 4 inches wider and only the solid color.
Since I'm too lazy to deal with zippers, I used elastic thread to shir the back panel.  I used white thread to contrast since I didn't have the perfect color on hand, and I didn't want to take 3 kids out in the cold to go buy more.
Originally designed as a skirt, the second dress came about when I was fitting my daughter for the skirt length.  I jokingly told her it was long enough to be a dress... She took the idea and ran with it giving me a new sketch.
The lining of the flowered fabric was the green, we used this to make the ties for the first dress.  When I tried it on my daughter to hem, she thought the serged edge was embroidered to match the white flowers... so it stayed.  If it bothers me enough, I'll hem it later.  A few straps and the girls' Easter dresses are ready to go!
Two dresses for only $5, works for me!

I still have about 1/3 of the solid coral fabric left over.  I'm hoping to make a vest and bow tie for my little man, but he says he doesn't like the color and I don't want to waste the fabric if he won't wear it!  Plus, he's requested a fedora to wear for Easter... at least I have a few weeks to figure that out!!!


Creating Success Around the World - Amie from Pinkapotamus

It's time for another edition of Creating Success Around the World!!!!  If you'd like to be featured in an upcoming edition, please email me at domesticdeadling@gmail.com.

This is a fun blog hop to help us all get to know a bit more about some of my favorite bloggers.  If you don't already know her, I'd love for you to meet Amie and join in the blog hop!!!!

Hi!  I'm Amie from Pinkapotamus
a Full time Stay at Home Mommy who spends her days bowing to the whims and wishes of these three little lovies!
When I am not busy being a wife, volunteer, chauffeur, chef, cleaning lady, girl and boy scout leader and playmate you can find me making messes, creating fun projects, running and reading books.
On my blog I am currently hosting a super fun crafting competition called
where two super crafters go head to head using one secret ingredient to see who is the champion!  Emily was one of our recent winners.. so stay tuned for Emily and the other winners to compete for the title of ultimate Crafter!
At Pinkapotamus you can join me every Monday at the Pink Hippo Party  to share your creations. And of course you can find lots of fun stuff here like my Printed Burlap Bag 
and of course my random bits of SilLiNeSs!
Emily had some fun questions for me... so here are my answers! What do you create?
Honestly, I create pretty much anything that I can get my hands on!  I really enjoy trying new things and have done everything from furniture refinishing to jewelry making.. if I can find the materials to create.. you can bet I'm going to make something!
Why do you create?
I create because I find it relaxing and rewarding and I just love when I create something that brings someone else happiness.
Do you sell your creations? If so, how? Where? And is it profitable?
I do sell my creations!  I have an etsy site also called Pinkapotamus  where I sell  fun personalized children's decor. 
Clothesline Name SignRed Shoes Ballerina Mirror
Spiderman MirrorCustom Handpainted Under the Sea Wall Hook Hanger
So far it has been profitable.. however, I am not going to be buying a mansion anytime soon!
What mistakes have you made or lessons you have learned?
I have made the mistake of NOT giving myself enough lead time for orders and getting overly stressed and of course behind.. so I have learned to be realistic.. I do have a LOT going on in life!
What, to you is success? Have you achieved it yet, or are you on your way towards success?
Success to me is just simply finding happiness in what you do.  In my opinion I have achieved it.. but I am always working to better myself and my products.
So what's next?
That's a good question and one I can't fully answer .. I put my faith in God that He knows what path I am supposed to follow.. I am just along for the ride!  I'm hoping (and trusting) it's a good one! Hope you stop by and visit me.. I just know well be best friends! Love, Pinkapotamus

Peace be with you,


Healthy Kids Lunches

I'm always trying to balance what the kids want to eat, with what they will eat with the nutrition they need.  My girls are finally getting reliable for taking their vitamins daily but the little man is still refusing.  Since the girls go to school all day, they do like to buy their lunches, but I try to limit that to no more than 2 times a week.  While I think that there is an attempt to serve nutritionally balanced meals in the schools, I think the majority of the choices are lacking, plus, I can't guarantee they will actually eat everything that comes on their tray.

One thing we have found to be beneficial for packing is using divided containers, plus I have enough of these to pack a few days worth for each girl and they can just grab and go.  If I had my choice, they would eat all raw, fresh fruits and veggies with nuts or other healthy proteins, but alas, it's a constant balance.  Here's what we packed this week:
JuneBug's lunch is on top, she is the easiest to get to eat healthy.  She wants to and likes a lot more than her siblings.  She loves salami, so I give into a few specific brands and let her have a few slices, especially when she gladly eats her fruits and veggies. 

Tasha's lunch is the bottom one.  She lives on peanut butter and Nutella!   She's not supposed to eat the crackers until the rest of the lunch is gone... not sure that always happens, but the advantage of sending my kids with reusable lunch containers is they always bring home what they don't eat.  I've only ever used reusable containers and it seems it's never occurred to them to empty them out before coming home... I'm good with that since it enables me to know what they did or didn't eat.  As for juice, I'd so much rather them drink water or milk, but again, it's a compromise.  The milk at school isn't organic, so I'd rather them drink milk at home where I can control that.  I let them have a total of  2 glasses of juice (or glass and box) as long as it's 100% juice.  I'd love to juice all fresh, organic fruits and veggies... but alas, that isn't happening any time soon either.

How do you encourage your kids to eat healthy in a world of processed and pre-packaged foods? 

Peace be with you,
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