Thursday, November 27, 2014


Wishing you a day of love, peace, and a grateful heart!

Saturday, August 16, 2014

Happy Valley Dog: hands-free leash review and GIVEAWAY!

Seems like I start every post lately with "long time no blog", but when I logged on and saw my last post was Easter!?  Yikes!

I do have an excuse!  Ever since last fall, I've been getting back into running.  In fact, I ran my first 10K in the spring!  For me, that was a huge accomplishment - setting a goal in the fall and working towards it - even running all through the New England winter - outside!

Photo: Carb loading post race with Melissa Gould.
Ooops!  We're not running in this photo! 

All along, I have had the best training partner - this guy!  Normally, he's a pokey walker, stopping to sniff every plant.  But, when his harness is on, he knows it's go time.

Photo: Christmas run with my furry running buddy.
Christmas morning - sky is blue but temps were low!
Skip ahead to this spring, when my friend Jen of Happy Valley Dog asked me to try out her hands-free dog leash.  Ever since our first run, it's the ONLY leash we use!  It's totally adjustable and gives just enough leash length without us getting tangled up.  It's sturdy enough for me to grab if I need to pull him closer, but still lightweight enough to be comfortable. 
Jen's girls with their dog Mason.

My girls had fun using it (it adjusts to their tiny waists) to take the dog for walks this summer.  And, with the clips on both ends, I can use it to clip the dog to a post (especially helpful if I need to hose him off!). 
Good boy, Mason!

I'm so happy with this leash - we immediately bought one for friends who have a new puppy!  Jen also makes these amazing dog toys out of repurposed t-shirts.  Our friends' puppy couldn't get enough of his (I don't have any clear pictures of him playing with it because he was so excited - all the photos are blurry!). 
Red and Blue Dog Toy, Upcycled T-shirt and Tennis Ball, Super Strong Dog Tug
Like what you see?  Good!  Jen is generously giving away one of her adorable dog toys to one lucky reader!  All you have to do is leave a comment about your favorite product in her shop (and your email so I can contact you!).  For an extra entry, you can like her on Facebook.  Just leave a comment that you did.

   Giveaway will close Sunday, August 24th at midnight EDT.

I'll be back soon with another review - this one just in time for school to start!

Thursday, March 6, 2014

Kids' craft: repurposed owls

I stumbled across this adorable tutorial for paper tube owls through Craft Gossip.  Seemed just the thing for the resident preschooler home on a chilly afternoon.  The first grader jumped right in when she got home from school.  What a great project when both kids are equally engaged!

I always love crafting with the kids because theirs come out SO much more creative than mine!  Can you tell which one is mine?  Hint: it's the most boring by far!

I hope, by creating these owls, we are inviting spring to arrive (any day now, PLEASE!) in New England.  I'm pretty sure I have been smelling it in the air, despite the piles of snow and frigid temperatures.  Call me crazy!

Sunday, February 2, 2014

Just in time for Valentine's Day: easy freezer stencil totes kids' craft

First off, hello!  Long time no blog! 
Secondly, it's almost Valentine's Day!  Are you getting ready to celebrate? 
The girls and I created these easy freezer stencil bags for their teachers (if J.Z. is reading this, spoiler alert!).  It was fun to get back to some crafting and be able to do it with little E and A.
Disclaimer: this bag is pretty much a knock-off of one I have from Old Navy.  I LOVE it and thought the teachers would find it handy and cute.  We found a 3 pack of medium totes at Joann's and some Tulip Soft Matte fabric paint.  Oddly, the pink and yellow were sparkly, but you cannot tell from the outside!  A roll of freezer paper from the local grocery store and we were good to go.
Little E dabbing on the yellow.  We found these thick, strong brushes were best to really get the paint in all the grooves of the canvas.
Little A's hand moving at super speed!
This one is done and drying...
...and the big reveal.  It was really cute to watch the look on the girls' eyes as they peeled back the paper.  I love how the "messy" heart turns into clean lines. 
Here are three of the six we made.  With four paint colors, we managed to make all six different.  This was the perfect project for the little ones - they could be messy and inexact, and it didn't take too long to dry so their interest was maintained.  I loved that they thought of their teachers as they picked colors, reasoning who would like which combinations.
We are blessed with wonderful teachers and we hope we make them feel special this Valentine's Day with our gifts.



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