Sunday, July 31, 2011

Creative Bloggers' Party & Hop 07.31.11

How are you, my friends? I hope that you're having a great week. Welcome to our 18th edition of CBPH where we get to showoff our creativity and hop on to different blogs to meet exceptional bloggers :)

Co-hosts
I'm blessed to have two fabulous bloggers as co-hosts this week. First is Alison at Oh My Vera who is in love with all things Vera Bradley. I never heard of Vera Bradley handbags and purses until we became bloggy friends (I know, you're now thinking what rock on earth I've been hiding all these years). Her passion of anything Vera is so infectious as evidently shown in her blog.

My second co-host is Jennifer from the Home Daybook. She loves to live creatively. You can see so many home decor posts in her blog. I'm amazed how she, being a teacher, gets the time to blog at the same time.

Blog Tip
Ever wonder how to make your own blog button that you can proudly display? Linney has this tutorial on how to make your own cutest EVER blog buttons for FREE.

Favorite Blog
You clicked, inlinkz tallied. The readers' favorite blog post this past week out of 282 links, being the most viewed post, is this thrift store decorating post by Vibrant Serenity. She scored well on her thrift finds and turned a drab room into a fab one.

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Giveaway Winner
I'm happy to announce the winner of $25 Store Credit at Up Words and On Words by Carri at Redefining C. It's comment #25 - Chari. Congrats, Chari!

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Our Party
To the main course of this post.
For those of you joining us for the first time, we only have 2 easy, simple rules:

1) Link up your creative post - can be a DIY project, decor, photography, crafts, recipes, poem, thrift finds, link party, or that informative syndicated post that can make us laugh, or cry - in short, whatever you're proud of! And if you like to link more creative posts, go for it! We'd love to see them :) (No links to businesses or giveaways. We have another party for these exclusively every Tuesday called Market Your Biz & Giveaways at 5 pm, PST.)

2) Follow as many blogs as you desire, preferably starting first with the one who linked before you and after you, before branching out, and let them know by leaving a comment. (Following me and the co-host will be very much appreciated, and we definitely follow back. Just let us know you're following.)

Displaying the party button on your blog, while optional, is very much appreciated :) It will help you remember to come back and link up to the the happiest blog party on the block (ahem!).

Link opens up every Sunday at 5:00 pm, PST and ends Friday at 11:59 pm.

Because I like something different, I'm using the reverse entry for inlinkz - so the most recent participant will show up as number 1, thus giving everybody a chance to have the #1 spot.



Friends, go ahead and mingle with one another :) Happy partying!





Burning question: Do you make your own blog button or do you hire/ask somebody to make one for you?

When I asked Kim to design my blog, I never had the faintest idea how to make a button. After learning how to use picnik, I tinkered with images so I eventually figured out how to make my 2 party buttons (this party and Market Your Biz and Giveaways). How about you?

Friday, July 29, 2011

CBPH Favorites - Exquisite Projects That Razzle and Dazzle

The moment I saw this project, it blew my mind away. This master bedroom of Stacy from Conspicuous Style seemed like a picture taken from a magazine - classy and sophisticated.



Suzie from The Accent Piece transformed an outdated chest into a spectacular piece of furniture.



Ashley over at A {Blonde's} DIY Life made a media unit out of 2 Ikea bookcases and it turned out lovely.



This jute-covered candle holder is truly an eye-catching piece. Victoria from VixenMade really has a good eye for making things pretty.



Jaime Lyn from Crafty Scrappy Happy upholstered her stool with a vintage salt sack. What a fun way of adding pizzaz to a thrift store find.



My friends, you've inspired us once again. Thank you so much!

Emealz - Easy Meals for Busy People!

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Market Your Biz & Giveaways Blog Party #7

Welcome to Market Your Biz & Giveaways! Business owners, we wanna see your products. Giveaways are good because they create a buzz about your business. Giveaway hosts, we wanna join! Readers, here's your chance to win fabulous freebies. So come on in and participate in this virtual marketplace.

Featured Biz

Friends, I'm a big fan of words as decorations for the home. They set the tone and intention that each family member can live by. Up Words and On Words have the best looking inspirational words you can display in your own home. I'm doing a giveaway for her, which you can see as the #1 spot in the giveaways link, and I encourage you to join for a chance to win $25 worth of vinyl lettering from her shop, like this lovely one. And nope, Carri didn't compensate me to feature her business, nor to host her giveaway, just so you know.

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NO RULES! Just link up your etsy and/or family-friendly business, browse other businesses before you and after you. It's a great way to network with other business owners. For the giveaways, same thing. Just link up your giveaways and join the other giveaways that catch your eye. If you have a creative post and you want to increase your followers, the appropriate blog party for that is called Creative Bloggers' Party & Hop.

Link opens every Tuesday, 5:00 pm, PST and ends Saturday, 11:59 pm.

Here's the party button. Displaying the party button on your blog, while optional, is very much appreciated! For one, it will help you to remember to come back here next week. Secondly, we want to spread the word about businesses and giveaways so many can join in. Mentioning it in Twitter and Facebook will also make you totally awesome :)




Lastly, before we proceed to the party, here are a few inspiring comments:

"Thanks for hosting. Linkys for biz and giveaways are far and few; your linky has helped me reach to people saying that Adithis Amma Sews has launched Custom Made Kids Clothing and 2 Skirts are already on sale!"
Creative Mama

"Thank you so much for hosting. I've made a recent sale and believe it is from your blog party! Thanks again!"
Elisabeth Davis

"Thank you for hosting this every week. I have noticed that I do generate a lot of hits from your site and I really appreciate a place that I can find other etsy shops that I might not have seen otherwise. So thank you again."
Kate

Friends, network, buy if you must, join the giveaways, and have fun!

PS: I'm not a blog police but in the name of order and organization, you'll be my bloggy BFF if you link up in the appropriate links :D Please note that there are two links. Here's the link for your businesses. There's a second link below specifically for giveaways so how about linking up your giveaways in there? Besides, it's easier to find and join your giveaways if they're in the appropriate link.

Link Up Your Family-friendly Businesses Here




Link Up Your Giveaways Here




Sunday, July 24, 2011

Creative Bloggers' Party & Hop 07.24.11

Welcome to another parade of boundless creativity! Thanks for coming and making Creative Bloggers' Party & Hop a part of your awesome day. Before I forget, I'm currently accepting applications for co-hosting position starting this August ;) You are more than welcome to let me know through an email or by leaving a comment if you're interested.

Giveaway
Just taking a vacation from doing giveaways, my friends. I wanna spend more time with my girls basking in the summer sun and doing fun summer activities.

With that said, I'm happy to announce the winner of $25 Store Credit at Ginger Snap Crafts. It's comment #27 - Bree from Bwildered. Congrats, Bree!

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Co-host
One big thing that I admire from Creative Carmella, my co-host this week, is her culinary skills. Her apple crisp is to die for and other recipes she posted in her blog. She is one of the creative bloggers that make me come back to her blog to read some more.



Blog Tip
I don't know about you, my friends, but me, I've been wanting to create blog pictures that look vibrant and eye-catching ever since I started blogging. Though my blog pictures are not as bad as they were 9 months ago, I still think that there is still much room for improvement, actually make that MUCH, MUCH more room for improvement. I wanted to go beyond the basics of autofix and cropping that I do in picnik or photobucket so I was so thrilled when I found Kim Klassen's free class on Photoshop Elements. I enrolled a tad late so I'm currently in the cramming mode but I tell you, I love every bit of it, especially that I finally understood what adjustment layers, layers mask, and opacity meant. There's more to learn and who knew that having assignments could be that enjoyable? She also offers in-depth classes at reasonable prices and I'm looking into enrolling one as soon as I have the budget. Joining her Texture Tuesday link party is my ultimate goal when I feel like I ultimately passed her high standard of excellence. (A woman can dream, right?). Her free class is now closed but keep an eye as to when the next class will be. Meantime, check out her free video tutorials. Just a quick disclosure that Kim didn't compensate me for mentioning her photography business in this post. I'm just sharing with you a good resource so that we can learn together, and maybe share a note or two.

Favorite Blog
You clicked, inlinkz tallied. The readers' favorite blog post this past week out of 200 links, being the most viewed post, is this beautiful post about Vintage Soda Crates. Tracy's Trinkets and Treasures' post also gave tip on how she made the colors pop using Photoshop Elements from Everyday Elements called In A Hurry. Check it out so you'll understand why this is the favorite blog of the week.



Our Party
To the main course of this post.
For those of you joining us for the first time, we only have 2 easy, simple rules:

1) Link up your creative post - can be a DIY project, decor, photography, crafts, recipes, poem, thrift finds, link party, or that informative syndicated post that can make us laugh, or cry - in short, whatever you're proud of! And if you like to link more creative posts, go for it! We'd love to see them :) (No links to businesses or giveaways. We have another party for these exclusively every Tuesday called Market Your Biz & Giveaways at 5 pm, PST.)

2) Follow as many blogs as you desire, preferably starting first with the one who linked before you and after you, before branching out, and let them know by leaving a comment. (Following me and the co-host will be very much appreciated, and we definitely follow back. Just let us know you're following.)

Displaying the party button on your blog, while optional, is very much appreciated :)

Link opens up every Sunday at 5:00 pm, PST and ends Friday at 11:59 pm.

Because I like something different, I'm using the reverse entry for inlinkz - so the most recent participant will show up as number 1, thus giving everybody a chance to have the #1 spot.



Friends, go ahead and mingle with one another :) Happy partying!





Burning question: Besides autofix and cropping, what other photo-editing techniques do you use?

So far, I'm still stuck with these 2 techniques to edit my photos so I'm currently exploring my free 30-day trial of Photoshop Elements 9 to figure out better ways. What about you? Please do share.

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Recognition Day Thursday - Clever Projects that Satisfy the Senses

I'm sharing with you today the outstanding posts during this week's Creative Bloggers' Party & Hop. I pinned them already in Pinterest so just click on the link to see how they made the projects and recipes.

We'll kick off this feature date with a delicious coconut chicken recipe (that will help you gain 10 pounds tomorrow - LOL!) at Bugaboo. She also included how to make avocado fries in this post and promise, it's worth reading... and copying.



How about some avocado fries as an appetizer?



The Pear Tree Cottage's fireplace makeover is so remarkable. You can't even tell that it's the same fireplace when you see the 'before' picture.



Faith's nightstand makeover is so amazing that you would want to makeover one, too.



This wedding bouquet pillow from Happy Hour Projects is reminiscent of her wedding flowers.



The 5 sisters from Bits of Everything made this cute shag pillow.



This magical Tooth Fairy door by Smart Bottom Enterprises is perfect for your little ones (who still believe in Tooth Fairies.)



This 3-D Decoupage art from Balancing the Dream is so easy to follow. The greatest payoff is it can make such a big impact in a girlie girl's room.



A Creative Princess cracked me up when she said that they brought home their lobster tails and clam shells after finishing them in a restaurant - all in the name of crafting. But seriously, this project that costs next to nothing is so pretty.



Thanks for inspiring us again, my creative friends!

Emealz - Easy Meals for Busy People!

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Orange County Fair Affair

The highlight of my summer this year is attending the Orange County Fair.

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Why wouldn't it be when there's a lot of fun and exciting things to see? Take for example the souvenirs above that you'll find as soon as you enter, and a variety of Fair staples such as these.

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You'll get to see modern technology at its finest, just like this teeth-whitening method they're advertising.

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How about some foot massage for the weary feet? Just pop in a quarter and you'll be ready again for a long and winding walk.

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Would you dare ride these and see the whole surrounding area up in the air? I did, a few years ago, and will do it again with Princess One tomorrow.

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This is the portion where you'll get so mesmerized because of the skillful way of making these blown glasses.

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In the Woodworkers' area, this artistic display of carved tools caught my eye, particularly the part that says the carpenter was distracted. (Ooops, sorry for not cropping that arm.)

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Would you like to have this peanut dish in your living room? Doesn't it look so elegant?

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This is an intricate hand-carved grader and who wouldn't fall in love with it?

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This masterpiece can be yours to the tune of $500, just contact the artist.

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This Dolphins Playing in Seaweed is the perfect addition to your modern home.

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When you happen to go to the Youth's gallery, you'll be amazed at the recycled projects they came up with. In line with their Goin' Green theme, the soda bottle craft is a very ingenious creation.

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Here are some more creative projects of the kids.

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You will see these crocheting ladies yearly who faithfully promote the benefits of crocheting.

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You would definitely fall in love with this afghan that my mother made.

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Just ignore the little glare and enjoy the message. If you're one of those that enjoy dessert, then this is perfect for you.

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You've got to see this piano serving as the home of these gorgeous plants.

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At the Ralph's Family Way, this giant mechanical tarantula that keeps on moving to scare little kids is just one among many (giant ants, giant wasp, giant grasshopper, and giant butterfly) whose sole purpose is to do so.

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Even with this harmless looking giant butterfly scared Princess Two, but the visual effect of this lady seemingly wearing the butterfly wings looked fairy-ish. (It wasn't intentionally done so, especially with Princess Two tugging me to run away from this giant bug. I was snapping away and she bent to give her baby in the stroller a sippy cup.)

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At least, Princess Two got to play here.

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Could you think of a more fitting theme for the Fair? You'll absolutely keep on eating when you're in the Fairgrounds!

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Here's what the OC Fair is famous for - the Coronary Heart Cuisine! What would you like to order - Totally Fried Chicken Sandwich, Totally Fried Klondike Bar, Totally Fried Kool Aid, Totally Fried Frog Legs, Totally Fried Avocado, Totally Fried Brownie, FryBQ Ribs, or Totally Fried Twinkies?

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Embarrassing to admit, but I yielded to the temptation, my friends. I bought a Totally Fried Klondike Bar - and it's SOOOOO good! Here's the before...and the after :)

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How about some chocolate-covered bacon? This is definitely one food we've got to try.

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This is the highlight of our greasy-food-bingeing activity, blooming onions dipped in ranch dressing.

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My friends, these are just the tip of the iceberg so if you want to explore more, get the entrance pass for unlimited visits, and you won't be disappointed.







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