Wednesday, August 31, 2011

What I Wore Wednesday [My Profile Pic]

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It's been a few weeks since I've linked up with Lindsey at The Pleated Poppy for WIWW, so to get back in the groove after Hurricane Irene and having a fire in our home the other night, {Gasp!} We are all okay, our home is fine, we are blessed, I thought I'd share What I wore in my Profile Pic... after all, I did have my 8yr old take it for WIWW purposes... *wink*


Sunglasses: Target
Strapless Top: American Eagle Outlet (one of my fav tops fo' sho!)
Cut-Offs: once my most favorite pair of jeans, I just rolled the hem this time around
Wedges: Gap Outlet

I also thought this picture to be fitting since I'm standing on a UGA rug and football starts on Saturday!!! Gooooo Dawgs!


pleated poppy

I promise to have something new next week once life calms down a bit, does life ever really calm down?

Did you See this week's Awesome GiveAway?! Check it out: HERE!


XxOo~ Melissa

Monday, August 29, 2011

Product Review & A GiveAway! [MyMemories Digital Scrapbooking Software]

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**UPDATE: I HAVE EXTENDED THIS GIVEAWAY TILL 11:59PM EST FRIDAY SEPTEMBER 2nd***

It has been a long weekend and were are still without power from Hurricane Irene, but so fortunate that our home is free of major damage as well as my Dad's house on the coast.  Our thoughts and prayers are with everyone who has been affected by Irene, all along the east coast.

I am so happy to bring you this GiveAway today, especially after this weekend's events!



As the Mommy of two little chickies, I have tons and tons of photos, as you can imagine.  Being in the digital age, a lot of my daughters' pictures are stored on disks that I always say I am going to print so that I may, one day, put them in a scrapbook.  Unfortunately, the idea of scrapbooking is a little daunting to me as I worry about all of the supplies I'd need to buy just to get started and the time involved.  I love to sew and can justify my fabric stash, but have a hard time justifying all of the cute accessories for scrapbooking... go figure, right? 

Imagine my surprise, and delight, when I was offered the opportunity to try Digital Scrapbooking Software by www.MyMemories.com!  I will admit that I was skeptical at first... "When am I going to have time to learn this software?", "After learning how to use the software, how long will it take to make anything that looks decent?"... no worries, this program is SO Easy!!






After downloading the MyMemories Suite Software directly from their site I was able to start building my digital scrapbook:



The software comes pre-loaded with templates and you literally drag and drop your photos into the pre-designed template.  But Wait, you can also add elements to an existing template from their online shop or print the page you have made and add your own flair with traditional scrapbooking supplies!

I also have used the software to make the product photo collage from last week's post:

Here's the best part... I am Giving Away one version of the MyMemories Suite Scrapbooking Software to One lucky SoChick! reader!! (Valued at $39.95!)

Mandatory Entry:

*Visit www.MyMemories.com and come back here to leave a comment about your favorite digital scrapbooking kit.

Additional Entries (leave one comment for each!)

*Follow MyMemories Blog
*Like MyMemories on Facebook
*Follow MyMemories on Twitter

This GiveAway will be open until Friday, September 2nd at 11:59pmEST... I will draw a winner with Random.org.

**Can't wait till Friday?! Head over to www.MyMemories.com and use this unique coupon code STMMMS4748 to Save $10 on your purchase of the MyMemories Suite Software (V.2) and $10 on your MyMemories store purchase (A $20 Savings!!)...  P.S. Their kits are so reasonably priced, this code will be a steal!

Good Luck!!

XxOo~ Melissa

Friday, August 26, 2011

Check It Out [ And Upcoming Posts!]

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My Shop is closed today as my family and I prep for Hurricane Irene... so I thought it a great time to keep you in the loop and give you something to look forward to!

Coming Soon:

Monday August 29th:
~ I have a GiveAway planned for a super fun to use product... be sure to check it out!

September:

~ September marks SoChick! Handbags & Embroidery's 1 year Shop Anniversary!  Now, I've since upgraded to using Big Cartel, but I have been selling online for one year this month! Woo Hoo!  I have a great week planned Starting Sept 2nd... be sure to Check it out!


~ My Birthday is September 7th! I have a fabulous guest post planned!

~ Have you noticed my Networking/PR page?  In short, I love networking and 'meeting' other small/indie business owners as well as bloggers and want to share them with you!  If you are interested in working with me and SoChick!, well... Check it out!


Finally... expect feature posts on all of these gals, my first September Sponsors !


JuneTheShop
  Photobucket


Lots going on, so if you don't already... be sure to Follow via Google Friend Connect, RSS feed, Facebook and Twitter so you don't miss a thing!

See you Monday!

XxOo~ Melissa

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Inspiration Workshop #13 [My Favorite Color & A Hurricane(?!)]

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Linking up with Miss Gussy over at Gussy Sews for week #13 of Inspiration Workshop...

This week's prompt is My Favorite Color...


As if it isn't obvious already from looking at my blog or shop... this picture is the first from my Pinterest that came to mind:

Source: flickr.com via Melissa on Pinterest


Yeah, so my favorite color is PINK.   I would have loved a room like this when I was a kid, heck, i'd love it now if I thought my husband would go for it... that'll never happen. Ha!
Gussy Sews Inspiration Workshop!


In Other News:


Hurricane Irene is headed our way and the latest reports say this Cat. 3 storm may come right through our area.  We are getting all of our supplies together and making preparations for the storm... if needed we willll head out to my in-law's home in Georgia.  *Fingers Crossed* this storm turns east and heads to sea!

Because of this I am postponing the GiveAway post I had planned for Friday.  I am also going to close my Shop as I will be unable to fulfill orders in the event we need to evacuate.

Think of us and we are thinking of everyone in the path of Hurricane Irene! *GO EAST, IRENE!*


XxOo~ Melissa

So Chick! Colors of Fall [New Product Feature]

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A few short weeks ago I talked about fall color.  Now you can add some of these delicious colors to your fall with the *New* SoChick Sling and Zipped Clutch Accessories!

My Personal Favorites for Fall!
(Shown in Polka Pink Paisley)

Featuring fun and fresh colors for fall with an added splash of color (I love pink...could you tell?)  The SoChick Sling and Zipped Clutch Pair perfectly together!

SoChick Sling Features:
Magnetic tab closure
Adjustable strap (from15-18in drop)
Sleek 'hidden' front cell pocket
Inner Zipped Pocket
Two inner Sleeve pockets
Measures: 10in L x 6in D x 10 1/2in H
Gathers at the base not only look pretty but allow plenty of room for all of your things!


Zipped Clutch Features:
9in L x 4 1/2in H
Zipped Closure
Two card sleeves, which hold multiple cards
Use it as a wallet to hold your cash, checkbook and cards, and toss it in your bag
or
Use it as a clutch: add your cards, cell, keys, lipgloss, etc 
and leave the big bag at home for quick errands.

*Both items are available for custom order... visit my Shop's FAQ Page for more Info.

Want a really great deal on your new SoChick items?  Visit Wildruffle for some great fashion and beauty tips as well as a special offer for your SoChick fall shopping!

Also, don't forget to follow SoChick The Blog, via Google Friend Connect, RSS feed, or Networked Blogs (all on the right sidebar)... so you don't miss the exciting post I have planned this Friday!!

Have a Fabulous Day!

XxOo~ Melissa

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Staying Organized [This Chick's Organizational Checklist]

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I would love for you to check out the Fox Small Business feature on me and SoChick!, Here!

This week is the unofficial start of Busy Season in my house.  Sure, last week I was prepping for my first booth at the Farmer's Market, but this week marks the end of summer break and the beginning of:

~A New School Year (3rd Grade!!)

~Gymnastics (for both girls, Trista is now going 2x a week!)

~Girl Scouts

Let's not forget all of the events and holidays to plan for: Labor Day, My B-day (Sept 7th!), The Hubby's B-Day, Halloween (Yep!  Growing up in Sleepy Hollow, NY, Halloween was a HUGE deal, and I really do love it!), Thanksgiving... Christmas!!!
{via}

Needless to say, times like these call for some:

ORGANIZATION

I thought it would be great as a reminder for myself, and any of you, to make a checklist of inspiring ways of keeping organized to make the most of our busy lives.  Here are some ideas, some I use, some I plan to use (and post about how they helped me!)... maybe you can find some that are helpful, too!


This Chick's Organizational Check-List

~The Busy Mom's ToDo List (check!)

 I keep this printable list, available at TheAttachedMama, on my fridge and it really helps me to stay on top of housework... which is uber important now that school is starting back up, since I will be back to juggling my business while entertaining my toddler (sans big sis as a helper), and running between school, gymnastics and girl scouting events.


~ A Centralized Command Center

  I kind-of, sort-of have this idea going on on the side of my refrigerator... just not as pretty and not as put together as the one in this picture. Ha!  I love the menu board, dry erase calendar and memo/magnetic chore charts... Three cheers for kids doing chores... hooray, hooray, hooray!









To the above, I would add folders for all of Trista's activities that require me to keep up with paper work, key hooks, and a spot for mail... and if I had the space in my home, i'd have this:


~ More Lists (even Wishlists!)

  I guess this is sort of similar to the first point, but lists are essential for getting me through a day of work and staying on top of my responsibilities.  However, when it comes to holidays or family events, I'm usually daydreaming about cute things to do (decorating, gifting, entertaining, etc) as the date sneaks up on me and i'm left thinking "Darn, I have no time... again.".
  This fall I'm taking lists out of the office (well... Studio in my case *wink*), and using them for everyday.
I'm making one for holiday decorating and gifting, as well as birthdays, and all of my wish lists as far as home decorating goes... I've been dying to paint the downstairs of our townhouse and always put it off!



~ Closet Organization

  I am forever trying to reinvent my linen closet, I even put sheet sets into their pillowcase to keep things tidy... that's about as far as I have gotten; I swear all of our closets are a mess.  Sure things are hung up, and you can open the doors without the fear of an avalanche, but it takes forever to find just about whatever it is I'm looking for... and fuhgeddaboutit in the girls' closet!







I'm going to try to find some inexpensive baskets and put them to work in all of our closets.

I'd love the girl's closet to look similar to this:






~5 Tips for Organizing your Elementary School Student
  Finally, this is a great post for helping manage all of the tons of school work my oldest chick-a-dee brings home on a regular basis! Check it out.


Well, I think those ideas are a great jumping-off point... I can't wait to start checking them off the list as completed... hopefully it'll help to keep things running smoothly!

Do you have any organizational tips to share?  Have you tried any of the ones I talked about?  Leave me a comment to tell me all about it! I love hearing from you!

XxOo,
Melissa



Monday, August 22, 2011

Weekend Wrap-Up [My Booth Set-Up and New Products]

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I had a lot of fun at the New Bern Farmer's Market this weekend.  I've been there several times as a shopper, but this was my first as a vendor.  I met some super nice people, learned that you can find me via Google (Yippie!), saw lots of sweet pups (note to self: bring doggie treats), and, since this was first time as a Vendor I just learned a lot for next time as well.

Here's my Farmer's Market Booth Set-Up:


I was going for a Boutique feel with my set-up and think I may have pulled it off... maybe?



 Notice that I was down to 1 biz card?! I kept putting them out, which is great!

 I'm thinking that next weekend I'll fill this table with some embroidered items... I ordered some new designs yesterday, and yes, I said next weekend! Eeeep! 

New Products:
Yep, there are some new items in The Shop, so head on over to check it out!  

Pssst... The SoChick Sling has received great feedback... it wont be in the shop for long... And, all of these are OOAK!


Off to gymnastics now with my little ones, this week starts a super busy season for us! 

Did You Know:
You can Network with SoChick?! From Button Swaps (aka Advertising!), to Feature Posts and GiveAways... I'd love to work with you. Check it out, Here!

Have a wonderful Monday!


XxOo~ Melissa

Friday, August 19, 2011

This Chick is Going to Market [Farmer's Market Vendor]

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Well, I'm off to attend my first Farmer's Market (as a Vendor), Yippie!  I've been working hard to get new products ready and I will be debuting them at the New Bern Farmer's Market on Saturday. (Downtown, New Bern, NC.) There's a sneak peek, HERE



Okay, so I'm not going to be selling produce at the Market, but doesn't this sign make you giggle?  I love it, ha!




I am going to put my Big Cartel shop into maintenance mode since I'll be bringing my inventory with me;  The Shop will be down until Sunday evening while I update it with new items. *wink*


If you are in the area, please stop by and say "Hi!".  I hope you have a wonderful weekend and I can't wait to share my Farmer's Market Vendor experience with you next week! 

XxOo~ Melissa

Thursday, August 18, 2011

Inspiration Workshop #12 [Front Porch & My Pets!]

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When I saw that this week's Inspiration Workshop (hosted at Gussy Sews) prompt was The Front Porch, I immediately thought of my Nan's house when I was growing up, in Sleepy Hollow, NY.

Her home was a beautiful white stucco Colonial with black shutters.  The Front Door was painted black; the three steps up to the porch were red brick and the porch floor was painted brick red as well.  At the top of the stairs she had these old metal milk jugs, one on each side of the steps, which she had painted black and would fill with the reddest of red Geraniums every summer.  There were three white columns on the porch, one at the left corner and two flanking the stairs; to the right was the door to the sun room at the side of the house.  I remember the black wooden bench and wicker porch set that sat in front of the large windows to the left and right respectively.  In the winter there was always a stack of firewood along with shovels and rock salt by the black bench; in the summer we would sit on the wicker loveseat and chairs to watch as an afternoon thundershower rolled through to cool down the hot air.  I have so many wonderful memories there; I wish my pictures weren't packed away in the attic... note to self: Have hubby bring them down.
Gussy Sews Inspiration Workshop!
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I'm also linking with Scattergirls today to share my pets..

Introducing:

Marilyn Louise- 5yo Boston Terrier (15lbs)- She runs this joint.


Conrad James- 2yo Std. Poodle (55lbs)- My sweet lovin', yet super goofy boy.

Jack Bauer- 5yo Black Carolina Panther Cat (17lbs... fatty)
He keeps the neighborhood in check, though we try not to let him out.  
Also notorious for loving shoes more than  I would like. 
Notice what he's snuggled up to? Yep, work shoes AND Flip Flops...
Have a wonderful Thursday! Check back in tomorrow to see what I'll be up to this weekend!

I would love for you to connect with me via GFC, Pinterest, Facebook or Twitter... check the buttons to the right!

XxOo~ Melissa

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

My SoChick Studio Tour

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I love seeing creative spaces, I've been known to get lost in Pinterest while browsing the spaces of others... and I really love Studio Tours!

 I'll admit that when I officially started my business I had taken over our dining room which meant: no more dinners at the table, always looking at work, always keeping the kids and pets away from everything... Sigh, something had to give!

 We own a Three Bedroom Townhouse and have two little chicks... not a lot of room to work with.  One day the light bulb in my brain clicked, and once Natalie was old enough, we moved the girls together into one room.  I love my family for being so supportive of my work-from-home business!

You may have caught a few glimpses of my Studio here and here... with some re-arranging over time, I have come up with a system that really works for both my creativity and productivity.... So, without further adieu here's my So Chick! Home Studio Tour:


I love the Limonada green in this room. (Valspar paint from LOWES)


The girls' dresser doesn't fit in their room, which is fine with me because it allows for extra 'counter space' in the Studio.  I typically put prepped and ready to sew items on it.. I also keep notions available, ribbon and such, on a cute little tray which I talked about, here. On the other side of the dresser I have a wire rack where I keep my home dec weight fabrics and canvas, on top you can see my interfacing and interlinings.  I keep a bin with all of my scrap interfacings so that I have small pieces available as needed... I plan on organizing into ziploc baggies by type, that would really help with productivity as I wouldn't have to dig around, ha!  I also really like my rolling bin for fabric, easy to move around and I keep it organized by color.

Moving on...
I currently use a folding table for cutting and sewing.  This is the same table I use for craft fairs and my farmer's market.... when I find a decent table at a good price, I'll upgrade, for now this works just fine.

I love working by the window, which overlooks our backyard.
This calendar is a new addition, I picked it up in GA at a JoAnn store for 50% off... It's a framed piece of glass with a calendar painted on the back, you write(and wipe *wink*) on the front.  I used my hot glue gun to stick some white eyelet fabric (that I ruffled) to the back of the frame... it helps the writing to show up and  looks way pretty & shabby chic.


I don't actually sit at this little desk, but I keep all of my files here.  I also try to organize my monthly sales and receipts here... which makes it super easy to keep up with the books! (Which helps come tax time, plus it's also nice to see that you are actually making money, woot!)


This "Bee Sweet" coloring page hangs above my desk and was taped to the wall here for the longest time!  When I was pregnant with Natalie we were unsure of gender (she never cooperated at the Ultrasound), so we stayed neutral with colors... going with a bumble-bee theme for her room.  She really was a busy bee, always moving in my belly, still always on the go, and Trista colored this page for "baby Bee" and taped it to the wall...  Such a sweet Big Sis! I don't know that I'll ever take it down. :-)

I didn't have anywhere else to put the glider from when this room was Natalie's nursery, but that's okay, I love having it in here, and I love when Trista sits in it to read a book while I work, I'll also rock Natalie in it from time to time ♥ .   

You can also see my hanging shoe organizer that I've put on the back of the closet door... this holds everything from embroidery stabilizer, spray adhesive, rolls of vinyl, to rulers and piping cordage... Way handy!  In the closet, which I didn't photograph, I have a tall 5 drawer dresser that holds my embroidery thread cases, the embroidery unit for my machine and more fabric, of course *wink*.

Thanks for taking a look at my SoChick Studio! I love showing you where I work and having you 'visit'!


XxOo~Melissa

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Sweet Brown Sugar Scrub [A Recipe for Hands & Body]

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If you've been following my blog, you'll know that I participate in a weekly linky party called Inspiration Workshop, hosted at Gussy Sews... and if you aren't following, for shame! ... just kidding, you can follow via Google Friend Connect, Twitter or Facebook... I'd love to 'meet' you! 

One of our Inspiration Workshop prompts was Pamper Yourself, and I mentioned a simple Brown Sugar Scrub that I make up for my at home pampering.

Anyway... I thought I'd share the recipe.  I basically came up with this after reading plenty of magazines and needing something simple and quick to give myself a mini-pampering session.  I don't claim to be in the business of making bath and body scrubs and such... just an FYI. *wink*

{Sweet Brown Sugar Scrub}

You'll Need:

A jar or container with a lid

1/2 Cup Light Brown Sugar (loose, not packed)

1-1 1/2 tbsp Honey (I used local honey from the Farmer's Market)

1/2 - 1 tsp of Olive Oil

Here's what ya do:

Put your brown sugar in your jar and add the honey...

Mash it all around...
you will make a mess (if you're like me)

Make sure your honey and sugar is well blended

Next, add your olive oil, starting with 1/2 teaspoon adding more if needed:

Mix it all up again, it'll should look like this...


Put the lid on and your scrub is ready when you are!


To Use:
Scoop out a little bit of scrub with your hand and massage onto your hands and arms.
Because Brown Sugar has a low melting point, so this scrub will slowly dissolve as you warm it in your hands.  I like using it in the shower as an all over exfoliating scrub, it leaves skin sooo soft... Sweet!

Do you have a recipe for quick at home pampering?  I'd love to hear it, leave a comment!

Also, check out Cate over at Wildruffle.com for another Sweet DIY beauty secret! (Psst... she inspired me to write up the recipe with her wildruffle comment on my Inspiration Workshop post, here.)



Photobucket


XxOo~ Melissa



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