Raising a Stereotype

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When I was little I used to love to put my own shoes on. Usually they were on the wrong feet, but non the less I was proud. Today I see little girls in mix matched tutus and boys with basketball shorts and nice button ups on. As a parent is there a line to which you will let your child dress themselves? Its always a good thing to strive to let your children be independent individuals, but to what degree? Will they come home sad or in tears from being made fun of at school? Will they be the newest trendsetters among their friends? Will all the other moms in Target give you dirty looks because your child looks a little crazy in their paw patrol pajama pants, Elsa shirt and matching hat hair?

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As a parent of a 2 year old and a 4 month old, I haven’t come across this issue yet. I can only image that if one of them hasn’t already, once in their lifetime they will come across a bully. As a parent do we dress them up in the most popular clothes, or completely let them find their own way in this world. My daughters are young, so of course I still dress them. I buy outfits that are in style and cute. We usually shop at Target, Old Navy, Carters, and Gap Kids/Baby Gap. I feel like she will grow to like fashion, because I do and thats something we have fun doing together… for now lol. I don’t always dress her to one stereotype though… one day she looks hippie with her cute mid forehead headbands, another day she is in cowboy boots and riding pants, and some times she plays a hipster with her cute garage sale Converse and Peppa Pig tank top . As your child gets older, do you let them have free range of the closet and dress to their desire, leaving for school in a pink tutu, orange pants, cheetah print shoes and a bright green shirt?? Or do you help guide them, even thought it may be taking away from their imagination and individuality??

I wonder this a lot. As I drive around and see children play at the park, or with their friends. I sometimes wonder when I see children walking around at the mall with their parents. Are they picked on? Does it matter to them? Are they happy? Everyone wants their child to be in individual and find themselves, but does this come at the cost of being somewhat a follower in the fashion world? I dont mean you go on fashion blogs daily for your second grader and buy all the “hip” expensive gear, but at which extent to people go? Do you pick out clothes for your child that you see other kids their age in? Do you pick out clothes that you enjoy? Or do you let your child buy what they want.. after all, it is your money.

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Growing up, I was fortunate that I didn’t have too many bullys. I was picked on for having acne and being a tomboy, but nothing daily and I had an overall very happy childhood. I didn’t wear the worst clothes, but I also didn’t have a GAP or American Eagle shirt and pants to wear every day like the cool kids. I wore a mix of things that were “in” and that I found cute. There were certain trends I didn’t always like or follow, and I never really had an issue with outfits to wear to school because I also had an older sister. Seriously, the best place to look for clothes every morning before sneaking out of the house with her stuff on, lol. My older sister Brittany worked in high school, so she always spent all her money on jewelry, shoes and clothes. Im not sure I would have made it through middle school or high school without her closet. My parents both worked average jobs and were raising THREE girls in an upper middle class suburb. But yes, THREE girls. Clothes, shoes, hair accessories, curling irons, flat irons, brushes, hair ties, styling gel and hair spray out the ass in every bathroom, as Im sure you can imagine haha. Anyways-I wore a lot of jerseys, jeans, overalls (they were in, I promise) and other things that sometimes I never really noticed a lot of other girls wearing. I also can’t lie and say that I didn’t always wish I could just walk into Abercrombie & Fitch and ask my mom to blow a few hundred dollars so just so I could look “cool”, and feel more secure around other kids at school. Whenever I did get a new shirt or clothes, I literally felt on top of the world. I noticed like everyone else that a lot of the kids that got picked on in school, were ones that didn’t always dress the best. Out dated pants, cartoon tshirts, hand me down jackets, old shoes etc. Was it their parents who couldn’t afford “cool” clothes for them? Was it things that they wanted to wear and felt comfortable in? Were those types of clothes special to them? Was that the one thing in their lives that they could control as a young teenager? All of those things run through my head when I remember my middle school days. I hope my child can find a happy balance within themselves.  I hope they grow up with confidence and know how special and amazing they are no matter what they wear. I want her to have fun with her clothes and  and not be afraid to be different. In the same breath, I don’t want her to be so far out of the box that she has trouble making friends or feeling important at school. As a parent, I just don’t know where to draw the line. I want her happy and to have friends who truly love her for whats inside, but I don’t want her picked on for being different to the point that she hates being around other kids her age, or no longer wants to go to school because it has become an issue. I above all- DO NOT want her being picked on because I cannot provide all of the coolest and latest things for her, if thats what she chooses and wants to wear. I don’t want her picked on because we cannot provide those things for her. No matter though, I just hope I can raise her to be strong, independent and know that she doesn’t NEED to fit in. She can be Dallis- the crazy, funny, outgoing, hilarious kid that I raised and birthed (and Harper too, but Dallis is the oldest and going to be the poor guinea pig).

I hope one day I can learn the answer to my own questions… What is enough? What is overboard? When is your child old enough to dress themselves? When is it okay to let them be picked on and gain their own independence?  etc, etc, etc. I know this world is harsh, and we cannot raise our kids in a bubble. One day she will be sad, upset, hurt, picked on, have her heart broken by a boy, and her self esteem crushed from a girl. Its things that as a mom hurt my heart to think about, but I know that I cannot change them or shelter her from the world. The best I can do is prepare her for life. Teach her thats its okay to be different, its okay to wear different things, its okay to fit in sometimes and stand out other times. I hope both of my girls grow up with the independence and confidence that they show now as little kids. I hope I can grow as a mother to find a good balance for them. I only have my own personal experiences for now, and I hope thats enough. To be able to give them everything that they NEED first, and a few wants along the way.

Crazy Craftin’ Momma

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Dallis K in our Mustard & White Chevron print knot headband #24

I have been one busy momma lately. Besides running a household and chasing after a crazy 13 month old, I also have been channeling my inner artsiness (is that a word?). I began taking pictures of my daughter a few months ago. Of course I have photos of every moment of her life since birth, but since purchasing my DSLR camera a few months back, it has been life changing. It does not even compare to all my other everyday mommy cell phone pics. My daughter is already drop dead gorgeous (sorry to brag), but with the combination of the quality pictures, and a little bit of mommy made fashion, we will go far. Dallis has just been announced as a new Brand Rep for TWO different amazing companies (more to come in later blog) haha. Besides getting more info photography, I also have picked up a love for sewing. I begin making headbands, scarves and skirts, and when my daughter is in the mood, boy do we make a great team showing them off 🙂

Besides being Mommy, I am also slowly but surely starting up my own little business on Etsy/Instagram. I have not launched the shop just yet, as it needs some tweaking and I would like to build up a little more of an inventory first. I hope one day it can be my little way of bringing home some bacon for my family. I love the thought of being able to make a little extra cash doing things I love. But while I do love making things, dressing my daughter up and taking pictures, it sure is exhausting sometimes. As you can see, she doesn’t sit still for long…. and she’s off to feed the chickens!!

As you can see, she doesn't sit still for long...

I have tried on more than a few occasions to sew while she is awake, but there is just something about the sound and movements of the machine that I cannot keep her away from. When she isn’t trying to put her hands in the machine, she can be found with fabric scraps on her head, pulling out ALL my finished headbands, my measuring tape wrapped around her neck, and half of my thread down her diaper, and its never ending…soooo nope, doesn’t work. I will just continue to craft while the princess sleeps haha. I have to use my time wisely, because its not everyday that I get two long wonderful naps out of my daughter, but when I do, Im a crafting machine. So for now, Ill continue to slowly build my little mini empire from inside the comforts of my home, while still holding down my Momma Bear role 😉

Sewing Machine, Baby Monitor, Blogging and Headbands.... all in an hours nap time!

Sewing Machine, Baby Monitor, Blogging and Headbands…. all in an hours nap time!

Dallis’s Frozen Birthday Party- Hawaiian Style

Frozen Birthday Invite - haley mullen I have come back from the dead! Okay, so I didn’t die. I haven’t been able to get on and post, as we have been very busy with my daughters first birthday party. Now that the madness is over, I am very happy that I am able to share the day and my crafts with everyone. I love to throw parties and be creative, but throwing a party for a one year old princess with 250 people was a little challenging. We chose the theme Frozen back when it first came out and my daughter was only 3 months old. This, as crazy as it seems, is a necessity when it comes to giant luau parties. We had to not only book a venue (community center) and band, but we had to let family members know the date asap so that they could plan around that weekend since we had quite a  few family member/friends flying in from out of state and in from other islands. Frozen has now blown into a huge hit with the kids, and it was really awesome seeing everyone (adults and kids) enjoying the party.

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Now when I say Hawaiian Style, I mean huge!! Back in the day Hawaiians through large parties for their babies first birthdays. This has turned into a really big event for everyone here and become a tradition. If you aren’t familiar with it, it is because back in the day it was a really big milestone for children to make it to their first birthdays, due to illness, diseases etc. Now a days, that means birthday are filled with jumping castles, bands, djs, face painting ladies, balloon twisters, food food,…. and more food! I had a lot of fun and months of crafting for her big day. Almost everything from this party was hand made by myself, a family member or friend. I did the majority of the work months before her party, and I received lots of help from people the week of the big bash. I enjoy staying home with my daughter during the day, but with all the glitter involved I usually had to wait until she went down for a nap on this project. I felt crazy crafting 6 months before her party, but gosh am I glad I did. Honestly, I will be okay if I never have to see another snow flake, Olaf, piece of glitter, or balloon for a long long time.

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I made the arch (balloons only), cardboard character cutouts, glittered/decorated mason jars and snow globes myself. I had help decorating all the tables, blowing up balloons, the cake and cookies. My parents once again were amazing help. My mom and Dad built the balloon arch frame and all the stands that held up my characters. My husbands parents and family did all the food. It was amazing, and there was a lot! Honestly, this day could have never happened without everyones help. We are so blessed to have Dallis in our lives, and she is one lucky, blessed, very very very loved little girl. I hope you enjoy all the pictures and can once again find any inspiration you are looking for in her Frozen birthday decorations.

CYMERA_20141003_110520     CYMERA_20141003_110724      CYMERA_20141003_110330     IMG_20140920_173443_807  IMG_20140920_181010_834  CYMERA_20141009_140045IMG_57937732865443   We were having way to much fun dancing away to the music, and I forgot to take pictures of the Hot Chocolate Table and the Kids Table. I brought my Kerig and had cups, packets of hot coco, marshmallows, crushed peppermint and chocolate sticks waiting for the kids. This was a huge hit! We also had an amazing kids table where the face painter/balloon twister was. It was filled with purple and blue glow sticks, Frozen socks, Frozen coloring books, Frozen pencils, Frozen dry erase boards, Frozen Stickers, tattoos etc. You name it, we had it. The majority of these cute items were from the $1 rack at Target. (We don’t have one on Maui yet, so all the items were flown in with us from vacation trips and family coming to visit) Hope you all enjoy, and get some ideas for your very own Frozen inspired party!!   SPECIAL THANKS TO: Shannon, the owner of Sweet Isabels in Avon Lake, Ohio. She made the amazingly cute cookies.  Check her out on Facebook! Danae, the owner of Cupcake762 in Kahului, Hawaii. She made and provided the beautiful Frozen cake. Jolie, the owner of Cirque Jolie in Makawao, Hawaii. She provided hours of entertainment for the kids with her creative face painting and balloon twisting. Our family ❤  Grant and I couldn’t have done it with all the help from our family members with the food and decorations. Thank  you!!! CYMERA_20141107_120847

Country Chic Wedding

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A few months ago I married the love of my life, my college sweetheart. Although we live in the most beautiful place in the world, we wanted to get married around the majority of our friends and family. Since I am originally from Ohio, and we both met in college in West Virginia, we decided to make the buckeye state our place of “I Do’s”. I used Pinterest and my parents for a lot of inspiration. I can honestly say that I get a 100% of my crafting/creativeness from my parents. Because of all their hard work, our wedding was all handmade and DIY.

My family is God sent, and honestly made the whole wedding happen. Since we were flying in from Hawaii (along with my in-laws) a week before the wedding, the majority of it had to be done months in advance, with their help. My sisters helped pick out the dresses, and sent me pictures/Skyped with everything they found. Were messaged back about jewelry and shoes etc. I sent my parents idea of centerpieces and the how I wanted the overall feeling of the wedding to be, and they made it happen. Everything from our favors, trellis, cake stand, wedding signs, centerpieces and open bar decorations were all handmade by my family with love. We met at college because we both played D2 baseball & softball, so you can see we incorporated our love for the game throughout our wedding. I hope you enjoy the pictures from our special day, and find inspiration where it is needed.

Our party favors. The other side said "Sending Smore Love".

My parents hand made the boxes out of wood. They stained/painted them and then filled with flowers. The numbers were all cut out by my dad and then mounted onto a wooden stained log stand.

My Mom and Dad collectively made these centerpieces. My Dad cut and nailed all the wood boxes together, and my Mom white wash painted each one before placing flowers in them. My dad also hand cut out all these table numbers, along with the wooden stump bases they sit on. My mom finished them up with a few coats of stain. They were beautiful!!

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One of my favorite things about the wedding, was this beyond beautiful trellis my dad made us. It was breathtaking, and so special to get married under something my parents worked so hard on.

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I hope you enjoyed looking through a few of my wedding pictures, and I hope you get inspiration to make your big day beautiful as well. Thank you for reading 🙂

I want to dedicate this page to our parents. Thank you for all the hard work you put into our wedding day. We love you!

DIY Personalized Snowglobes!

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Backside of Jar

Snowglobes are fun no matter how old you are, and these are easy to make as well! This year we are throwing my daughter a big “FROZEN” First Birthday Party.  I wanted to do something fun and creative, and came with up these  Personalized Mason Jar Snowglobes.

These can we be used for any occasion, and with almost any clear jar and a lid. I chose the smaller pint size mason jars for my project. You can also use any regular size mason jars you have around the house or even cute little baby food jars!

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What You’ll Need:

Mason Jar
Glitter
Water
Super Glue
Personalized Picture
Scissors

What To Do:

1. CHOP CHOP
Most jars are smaller than the average 4 x 6 picture, so I had to cut them down to size. I cut each picture 2 inches x 3 inches. Make sure to trim each picture enough to leave room for the lamination seal to also fit in the jar.
**TIP: I used a piece of card stock in the corrected size to trace over all the pictures.

I had a little assistant on this one :)

I had a little assistance from Miss Dallis on this one 🙂

2. MAKE PRETTY
You can choose to cut out two pictures and glue them facing back to back, or create a design on the other side. Since our theme is Frozen, I cut out little snowflakes and glued them to the colored paper on the back of the photos. After everything was done, I let them sit overnight and dry. If you choose to use two photos back-to-back, test it out with the jar first and make sure that both photos will be clearly visible.

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3. LAMINATION
I took my photos to OfficeM*x and got them laminated. For 24 photos, it cost me $3.64. They came back all laminated on one sheet, so I cut them up and made sure not to cut the seal. If you want a cheaper option, you can also use clear packing tape. Make sure to get all the edges really good to not allow water in.

4. CREATE
Place the pictures inside the mason jars. Add a little glitter and fill it up to the top with water. If you don’t have glitter, you can also use gratted PVC pipe for a snow effect.
**TIP: This is also where you can add some Glecerin if you like. This makes the fake snow fall a little slower, and gives it a really neat effect

STEP 5: Place some Super Glue around the edges on the lid, and screw on tightly. Turn it over, shake it up… and now you have your beautifully hand made Mason Jar Snowglobes. Feel free to dress up your jars with stickers, ribbons and more!

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These are fun for the whole family and can make great gifts for Grandparents, Birthday Centerpieces, Holiday Table Decorations and more!

 

 

Coconut Oil for President!! 15 Ways You Didn’t Know it Could Be Used!

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Seriously, Coconut Oil… I put that sh*t on everything! I stumbled upon the thought of using this magic stuff while pregnant. Friends, Blogs, Family, Pinterest, everything and everyone was telling me to start using it. I went to our nearest health foods store and bought a tub of their Organic Coconut Oil. I started out slow, using it only as a moisturizer against stretch marks. Well everything went as planned, and I smelled like a hippie/Pina Colada lady for months (it was amazing!). After giving birth to my daughter I still had a whole tub of this stuff I didn’t know what to do with. I started to do some research, and read that it was good for your hair and skin, so I started to use it in the shower weekly to condition and shave with. As this product started to grow on me, I ventured out on my own and tested it on everything! If my daughter scratched herself with one of her baby fingernails, it was Coco Oil to the rescue. And… it worked! This product is amazing, and best of all, it is organic and great for my whole family.  I am in love, and will continue to use this product FOR-EV-ER. I’d like to share some secrets, so here is Coconut Oil “15 Ways You Didn’t Know It Could be Used”.

 

1. Sore Throat Remedy

You can gargle some Coconut Oil in the back of your throat, or add it with some lemon juice and Honey to your tea or hot water.

2. Oil Pulling

Now this one, I had to try myself. I always grew up with a few cavities here and there, but worst of all I had “shadows”. These are not cavities, but dark spots on your molars. Oil pulling is a method of swishing coconut oil around in your mouth while it gets between all the cracks. This people, is amazing! My dark spots have gotten smaller, and one is even completely gone. Now this use I love, because my dentist has always told me that there was “nothing I could do about them”.  Oil pulling is great for your gums, and draws out all the toxins in your mouth. HINT: Try swishing around the coconut oil for 10 min a day, before spitting it out.

3.  Natural Lubricant

4.  Yeast Infections

This is great for breastfeeding mommies. Most of the counter medications are not advised to be used while BF. Since Coconut Oil is natural and organic, it can be an effective and natural remedy.

5.  Sunscreen/After Sun Care

Coconut Oil is a natural SPF 4 sunscreen. It can allow be applied to sun burn and used in your after sun care regimen.

6.  Naturally helps heal cold sores

7.  Pet Friendly!

Can be used on everything from itchy hot spots, to help preventing hair balls in cats. Personally we use this on our English Bull Terrier. They are notoriously known for their skin issues and allergic reactions. I dab a little on her dry skin, and even on her nose after a long day outside to keep the skin soft and protect it from the sun.

8.  Ear Infections

9.  Mosquito Bites

When applied topically, Coconut Oil can help lesson the itch from bug bites.

10. Athletes Foot/Foot Fungus

 

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5 Mommy & Baby Uses (These are my favorite!!)

11. Diaper/Heat Rash

12. Thrush Treatment & Prevention for Mommy & Baby

13. Lice Treatment

14. Cracked or Dry Nipples during Breastfeeding

15. Cradle Cap Treatment

Thank you for reading, and hope you enjoyed my first post EVER!