Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Popular DIY Pins

Here are some of my DIY pins that have been pretty popular lately.








Which one do you think you would want to try first?
Feel free to re-pin and follow me on Pinterest!  You can also leave your Pinterest URL in a comment, and I'll follow you.
Do you have any popular pins on your boards that you'd like to share?  Please do with a comment!

Here's a quick coupon code re-cap from a few Etsy shops that I've featured here on the blog during Earth Month:
Conversation Glass - Coupon Code 2JUSTBYOU for 25% off (expires May 31st)

SmiLeaGainCreations - Coupon Code MORESMILES for 10% off your order

Crimson Hill Soaps & Scents - Coupon Code BLOG10 for 10% off your order

Monday, April 29, 2013

Gifts for MOMS that Garden

My mom loves to garden, so I thought I'd share some gift possibilities for the moms out there that love to garden.  Plus, gardening teaches us to be earth friendly, and this month is all about eco-friendly finds!  =0)















And here's a great DIY posted recently by a blogger friend, Rebecca, from Soap Deli News: Herb Markers with Washi Tape (I love any excuse to use washi tape)!




Does your mom like to garden?  Do you like to garden?

Friday, April 26, 2013

Meet & Greet Blog Hop #24

Hop, Hop, Hop till ya Drop with Meet & Greet!!!

Join in, meet some fellow bloggers, greet them with comments, and grow your blog with new friends.
**Please note: It might take me a bit to get to all follow-backs, but I will get to them all, I promise.  Thanks for your understanding.

Interested in being a Co-Host?
Send an email to 2justByou(at)gmail(dot)com with "Co-Host" in the subject line for consideration and include your blog link.




Meet everyone!
This week's Get-to-Know-YOU Question:
Who taught you how to cook?

*HOSTS*

Laurie, from Created by Laurie:
I was in middle school when my parents divorced.  My Mother started taking us out to eat instead of cooking - and it was the SAME restaurant every time. I started to teach myself how to cook in the kitchen.  (Meanwhile my Father was teaching himself to cook too)  Once I went and lived with him he gave me lots of tips and ideas!  (He cooks from scratch - bread, beef stroganoff, salsa - you name it!)


MY answer

Unfortunately, nobody ever taught me how to cook.  Sad story...The first time I made cookies, it took me over one ho ur just to find all the ingredients and kitchen utensils to make the cookie dough!  And then after all that, my chocolate chip cookies in NO way resembled anything edible.  =(  After moving out on my own, I taught myself to make simple dishes (I still love the simple & easy recipes), but it really would have been nice to have Pinterest back then, along with all the other great foodie websites that we have now (and help me immensely)!  My mom (who has always been long distance) would also visit on holidays and teach me how to bake.  I'm a much better baker than a cook.  She's good at both and still tries to help me with cooking.  Aaah...What would I do without Mom?  Because of my experience with no learning as a kid, I try to involve my kids with cooking and baking and make it a fun time whenever they want.


*CO-HOST*

Crystal, from Angelorian Tradition:
I was taught to cook by two people for the most part actually.  My mother gave me my first lessons starting with cream of wheat, fried eggs and oven baked potatoes. Not all for the same meals of course. By age 8 I made my very first dinner all by myself, it included baked chicken, canned corn heated and slightly crunchy boiled potatoes with sugar cookies for desert. My first attempt at the frosting for the cookies netted a horrid green goop, turns out there is more than one type of white powdery stuff that can be kept in a cupboard, I used Bisquick instead of 10x sugar the first round and it tasted as awful as it looked. Fortunately I had the sense to ask for a bit of help at that point and find the right direction before putting it on the cookies. My paternal grandmother gave me my first baking lessons, beginning with my childhood favorite, pumpkin pie. My grandfather happily ran to the store for the ingredients as he was the true definition of a pie addict and then we spent the rest of a rainy afternoon with me learning how to properly roll out, cut out and pinch a pie crust into place with grandmas' very patient directions and assistance in between smacking grandpa's hand as apparently pumpkin pie filling tastes every bit as good from the bowl as in the pie:) Great question and a lot of good memories!


*FEATURED GUEST*

I taught myself. My mother never really taught me or let me cook with her so I experimented with recipes that I would see on TV or read on the Internet and I basically learned by trial and error :)


Now it's YOUR turn.
Who taught you how to cook?


Spread the word, 
Grab our button!


Now Link Up and Have Fun!
* Please be sure to follow the Hosts, Co-Host, and the new weekly Featured Guest each week! *

If you would like to sign up for email reminders for the Meet & Greet Blog Hop, please sign up below. (Your email address and info will not be used for any other purpose.)

Friday Feature & GIVEAWAY: Crimson Hill

With Mother's Day just around the corner, I really wanted to share one of my favorite soap shops with you.  Angie is the owner of Crimson Hill Soaps & Scents, offering natural handmade soaps, body scrubs, lotions, lip balms, party favors, and more.


How did Angie start making soap?  Hear it in her words:
Most everyone has sensitive skin in my family, especially my daughter.  From the age of 2, she has had trouble with any store-bought cream, lotion, balm, etc. and she is now 10 years old.   A friend suggested I try natural soap.  We did and it helped within days and I knew this would be something we would always have to use.  From that point, I started researching how to make my own natural soap and completely taught myself how to do it.  It took several attempts to get a batch that even resembled soap, but now we have refined our recipes down to perfection!
This makes a wonderful and thoughtful Mother's Day gift, and you can choose 3 of Mom's favorite scents with the  Soap Sampler.

Crimson Hill's section of kids party favors is fun, fresh and unique.  How did this Angel Faces line begin, and how did Angie's kids play a part in its formation?  Here is Angie's story:
My Angel Faces line was formed because of my daughter's sensitive skin.  I thought, if she had to use natural soap and I was going to make it, then why not make it kid-friendly in fun shapes?  There are so many kids with skin issues ranging from mild eczema and dryness to full-blown severe eczema and psoriasis.  If using soap in the shape of a Lego or Cupcake makes bath time easier and a little more fun and it can help soothe their skin, then I feel like I accomplished something!
Be ready for summer with fun flip flop soaps!

This is what Angie says sets Crimson Hill apart from other handmade soaps:
What I feel sets me apart is product selection and quality.  I pride myself on offering a wide range of products for everyone.  From fun Lego Soaps for boys and cute Ladybug Soaps for girls, to Sugar Scrubs and Body Creams for women and Shaving Soap for men, I have something for everyone and within every budget.
My newest addition to the line-up this year has been custom Soap Party Favor Packs and bulk mini soaps.  These items have sold phenomenally and I am always adding new themes!

Mothers deserve to be pampered.  I asked Angie what her best selling Mother's Day soap scent is and why she thinks it's best for pampering.  Here is what she said:
I sell lots of gift sets, perfumes and soaps for Mother's Day.  The most popular scent is Indulgence because it is just pretty and feminine without being overly perfumed.  It is a lovely blend of Jasmine & Light Citrus.




Angie is a mother herself, so I asked her what her most memorable Mother's Day has been so far.  Here's her reply:
Even though they are all special, my most memorable Mother's Day would have to be the first one after my daughter was born.  There is just something extra special about getting your first Mother's Day card!  Since then, I love getting all the little homemade gifts and cards that my kids make for me each year.  They are truly my most cherished and treasured item!




Where can you find Crimson Hill on the web?
Etsy
Website: crimson-hill.com
Facebook
Twitter
Pinterest
Blog
Visit Crimson Hill and see what gift YOU can get for MOM!


As a special treat, Angie is offering 10% off for all 2justByou Blog readers (not valid on wedding favors, party favors or bulk soaps).  Now is definitely a great time to order some luxury soaps to pamper Mom for Mother's Day.  Use coupon code BLOG10 at checkout to receive your 10% off discount at Crimson Hill.

Crimson Hill is giving one lucky 2justByou Blog reader a 3-Pack Round Soap Sampler with winner's choice of scents!  This giveaway is open to U.S. Residents only, due to high shipping costs.  Thank you for understanding.  Giveaway ends on Wednesday, May 22nd, midnight, Eastern Standard Time.  To enter, please fill out the Rafflecopter form below.

a Rafflecopter giveaway



Good luck to you all!  It's a great prize.  =0)


Thursday, April 25, 2013

Paper Recyclery Giveaway WINNER

 THE WINNING TWEET, ENTRY #15


Congrats to our winner.  Let me tell you all, Stephanie really deserves this prize, and it made me smile real big win the random number generator chose one of her MANY entries!  Stephanie tweeted and faved an item from Paper Recyclery almost every single day. She is definitely a big fan of Paper Recyclery, and I'm so glad she is the winner!  =0)

Thank you to our sponsor as well, Paper Recyclery. Be sure to visit this shop to find excellent handmade papers, all made from recycled materials.  It's great to be earth-friendly.  

Additions Style Giveaway WINNER




Big congrats to our winner!!!  Thanks goes out to all entrants.  And a BIG thanks goes to our sponsor for this giveaway, Valerie at Additions Style.  

Stop by and visit Valerie's shop, because it's all about GOING GREEN this month!  Be eco-friendly and buy some very affordable and trendy jewelry from Additions Style.  =0)

Stay tuned, our winner for the Paper Recyclery Giveaway will be announced later today as well.

And if you haven't already, you can enter our current giveaway for a lovely pair of Yellow Rose earrings RIGHT HERE.


Wednesday, April 24, 2013

Words for my Wednesday

Earth Day was on Monday, and I'm still on the nature theme, so I hope you find today's words inspiring.

The beauty of trees always amazes me.  

"He that plants trees loves others beside himself."
~ Thomas Fuller


 More shots of trees around my neighborhood.

And because I know that it snowed on Earth Day in other parts of the U.S., I'm including a snowy tree.  Beautiful, isn't it?


This next quote is from Miss Val's Creations, from last week's comments.  I love it (and sometimes I need to remind myself of this quote).

"Sunshine is delicious, rain is refreshing, snow is exhilarating; there is really no such thing as bad weather, only different kinds of good weather."
~ John Ruskin



Happy Wednesday!  If you have a quote, saying, or words you would like to share, please do with a comment.  =0)  Thank you for reading.  Have a great day.

Tuesday, April 23, 2013

A New Year Festival

On Sunday we took a trip to downtown San Jose and attended a Thai New Year Festival.  It was a great family event with entertainment ranging from some kickboxing, a beauty pagaent, traditional dances, bounce houses for the kids, food and vendors.  Take a peek!





I tried to get a good shot of the kickboxing, but this is the best one I got.
I didn't watch many matches (too crowded).



These are the beauty pageant finalists.


While the judges scores were being tallied, there was entertainment provided by the 12-year-old official Songbird of Southeast Asia - (a little girl with a big voice).  She sang what I call "a typical pageant song," One Moment in Time, by Whitney Houston.  She did a great job.  =0)


I wasn't able to snap a photo of the actual winner of the title, but I snapped this one of "Best Smile" winner (contestant #15).


I didn't get any shots of the traditional dances or dancers, which is a bummer.  Many of the performers came all the way from Thailand to perform.  It was fun to attend, because my family hasn't been to a New Year Festival in a couple of years.  Hopefully we'll get to go again next year too (that way I can take more photos)!  

Monday, April 22, 2013

Happy Earth Day GIVEAWAY: Flora Beauty

HAPPY EARTH DAY!!!  I hope that, if even for just a moment, you will take some time out today and enjoy nature's beauty, recycle or reuse something, and be thankful of our natural resources.  =0)

In celebration of this beautiful day celebrating earth and nature, I have a special treat - a great giveaway from Flora Beauty!



Flora Beauty offers natural jewelry featuring real flowers and plants. I thought it would be a perfect way to celebrate nature in showcasing Mirjam's lovely work today.  Enjoy getting to know the shop owner, and please remember that images are clickable!  


I asked Mirjam how she began making her natural flower and plant jewelry, and this is what she said:
Well, my mother taught me a lot about herbal remedies and natural plants. We've made plenty of greeting cards with dried flowers. But once read the greetings cards usually stays somewhere in the storing boxes with other things. Not so long ago, maybe a year ago, I have started, for my first time, to make botanical jewelry. I have tried to keep the lovely plants and flower forever in a way that people can bring the nature with her whenever she goes. Embedded them in resin seemed a very good ideal to me and not many people were doing this. I have never thought that this will sprouted so much passion inside of me. And my first results as a self - taught was so great! I was continuing with the creativity and making pieces that were more and more beautiful.

Does Mirjam have a favorite plant or flower and why?  This is how she answered:
This is hard to answer. All of the flowers are beautiful. And you can make jewelry from all of the flowers. Perhaps my answer could be: yellow rose. Because when the yellow petals are embedded in the resin, they give such a beautiful sunshine color! And this is why I am giving away small studs made from yellow rose petals to one of your readers.

What is her one most favorite thing about nature?
That it guides us. Sometimes when we do not know the answers to our questions, we can find them in the nature. Human beings are part of the nature, have the same life's cycle than nature.

I asked Mirjam if there was anything in particular that she would like readers to know about her handmade items and/or shop.  This is her reply:
My jewelry is made completely from natural materials: wood, pressed flowers and plants, non-toxic, hard and clear resin. The flowers will not fade away, will not change the color and will remain their beauty forever!

Where else can you find Flora Beauty online?
facebook // pinterest // etsy

Mirjam is generously offering a coupon code for ALL  2justByou Blog readers!  Use code KIM20 to save 20% off ALL items in Mirjam's shop Flora Beauty.  She also offers special sales that last 30 days at the beginning of EACH NEW SEASON, so there is much reason to visit her shop often.  

As a wonderful giveaway prize to my readers, Mirjam mentioned that she will be giving away the lovely yellow rose studs (shown above).  To enter this worldwide giveaway, please use the rafflecopter form below.  Giveaway ends Saturday, May 11th at midnight, Eastern Standard Time. 

a Rafflecopter giveaway
GOOD LUCK!!!





Friday, April 19, 2013

Meet & Greet Blog Hop #23

It's time to Meet & Greet and have some weekend fun!!!

Welcome to the weekend Meet & Greet Blog Hop.
Join in, meet some fellow bloggers, greet them with comments, and grow your blog with new friends!
*Please note: It might take me awhile to get to all follow-backs (I haven't gone through last week's list yet), but I will get to them all, I promise.  I thank you so much for your understanding.  =0)

Interested in being a Co-Host?
Send an email to 2justByou(at)gmail(dot)com with "Co-Host" in the subject line for consideration and include your blog link.




Meet everyone!
This week's Get-to-Know-YOU Question:
What was your most embarrassing injury?

*HOSTS*
Laurie, from Created by Laurie:
There are two times I have been injured that I wish I had a better story to tell.  The first was when I fractured my arm - I fell out of a chair!  The second was in 8th grade, I went to get out of my desk and as I pushed up I dislocated my shoulder...embarrassing (and painful!).  No crazy bike stunts or climbing adventures...Just getting out of a desk...*sigh*

MY answer:
I hope you all don't laugh too hard.  My most embarrassing injury was when I was in grade school and just learning how to use a hair blow dryer.  For some strange reason (I still don't know why I did this), I rested the hot dryer on my cheek...Yeah, I know, super ridiculous, right?...I had the burn mark of a hair dryer grill on my cheek for a week.  So mortifying!!!  I'm so glad it didn't scar.

*CO-HOST*
Well I was having a hard time thinking of a time when I had the most embarrassing injury but it just so happens that yesterday as I was walking out of my room, singing at the top of my lungs, I managed to bang my pinky toe on the side of the wall.  Of course my "wonderful" singing immediately stopped, as the only thing I could do was just stand there and wait for the pain to pass.  Of course my husband couldn't help but laugh at me from the other room.  And yes, walking is still a little painful.

*FEATURED GUEST*
What Happens at Grandma's wasn't able to answer the Question of the Week, so this is a short blog description:
This blog is filled with wonderful and creative ideas, crafts and recipes you can do with little ones and pets too!

Now it's YOUR turn!
What was your most embarrassing injury?

Spread the word,
Grab our Button!

Now link up and have fun!

***Please be sure to follow HOSTS, CO-HOSTS, & the new weekly Featured Guest each week. Thank you! ***


If you would like to sign up for email reminders for the Meet & Greet Blog Hop, please sign up below. (Your email address and info will not be used for any other purpose.)

Thursday, April 18, 2013

Eco-Friendly Gifts for Mom & Dad

Mother's Day will be here in a blink of an eye, and Father's Day comes soon after that.  So I thought I'd share some Mother's Day and Father's Day gift possibilites with eco-friendliness on the mind.  

First, let's talk Mother's Day, because it comes first, and it's right around the corner being at about three and a half weeks away.

If your mom likes jewelry, these recycled sterling silver earrings might be the perfect gift!  Handmade from scratch in Seattle, Washington, they are eco-friendly and absolutely beautiful.

Available for purchase at Lily Emme Jewelry.


Ever heard of Plarn?  It's plastic yarn, made from recycled plastic bags!  If your mom likes tote bags, this crocheted plarn tote could very well be her new favorite.


Available for purchase at Arts of Eska.


Next up is something fun - Denim Pocket Wallet for iPhone!  People always tuck their phones into their pockets, so I thought this to be a fantastic idea.  Plus, the creator of this unique gift idea was just featured on Tuesday's Eco-Fashion post, and she's offered a coupon code for readers (YAY!).  Use code MORESMILES to save 10% off!!!


Available at SmiLeaGainCreations.

And we all know that flowers are often a great Mother's Day gift.  How about a  unique and sophisticated black vase made from a recycled/upcycled tequila bottle?  I love it!


Available for purchase at Conversation Glass.

Conversation Glass was featured in last week's Eco-Friendly Finds post, and the owners of the shop have generously offered a coupon code for YOU, my readers!  Use coupon code 2JUSTBYOU and receive 25% your order from Conversation Glass.  Offer expires May 31st.


Now, let's talk about what the gift possibilities are for DADS!  

Here's another one from Conversation Glass, because these might be perfect for the Man Cave!  And don't forget, you can use coupon code 2JUSTBYOU to save 25% on your order!


Available at Conversation Glass.


Next up, something for the fisherman!  These beauties are called Recyclures by Tedd McDonah, and there are so many to choose from.  Pretty cool, right?


Available for purchase at Tedd McDonah.  


Does your dad need a new wallet/card holder?  This one is made from a recycled/upcycled bike inner tube!  How awesome is that?


Available for purchase at urchin bags.  


These holidays celebrating parents may seem far off in the future, but they're really not.  I hope these eco-friendly gift ideas have you thinking about what YOUR mom or dad might like that's recycled into something new and unique.

Have a great day!  




Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Words for my Wednesday

The first day of April brought a big storm to Northern California, and I was able to get some pretty cool shots from right outside my front door.  You can see the sun trying to break through from the left.  But on the right, it's all dark and pretty gloomy looking.



I also found a great quote to go along with this photo:

"Even on cloudy days the sun waits to break through."
~ Daniel of @Blindedpoet

And then a few minutes later, I went to go and check out the sky from the backyard.  This is what I saw, on the "gloomier" side of the sky, beyond the big puffy, dark clouds and into the gray...



Here is a nature quote from one of last week's comments.  It's from Tiffany who blogs at In a Pretty Box.



"One touch of nature makes the whole world kin."  
~ Shakespeare

If you have a nature quote you'd like to share, I might just choose it to feature in next week's Words for my Wednesday!  Leave your nature quote, saying, or words in a comment.  =0)

Have a happy Wednesday, everyone!

Tuesday, April 16, 2013

Eco Fashion

You can be eco-friendly while being fashionable at the same time.  It's great to be green, and eco fashion is another way for you to go green.  Today we're going to visit some eco-friendly fashion finds.  Hope you enjoy!  =0)

Mountains of the Moon is where you can find eco-conscious fashion and art, all in the same place.  On the company's homepage, you'll find three simple words: Smart. Sustainable. Style.  You may have heard of that saying, "There is beauty in simplicity," because Mountains of the Moon gives just that - Beautiful, simple fashion - all while being eco-friendly and stylish.  Check out these fabulous finds from this fabulous site.




I love it in the Quarry Blue color!  It's a great summer dress, casual & chic.  It's made from 100% organic cotton jersey, so you KNOW it's super soft!





These are perfect spring & summer pants, and in a pretty olive green shade.  I like wide-leg pants, so these look fabulous and oh-so-comfy.  And check out what's in the description:

"Eco-friendly bamboo button closure on waistband with zipper fly. Features sustainable 55% Hemp, 45% Tencel, a unique blend of hemp and wood pulp that creates a soft, smooth fabric that breathes with the skin and becomes softer over time."
Doesn't that sound awesome?

And here's a super pretty top that's ON SALE.  We all love a good sale, right?  





It's a reversible halter top.  How cool is that?  I'm absolutely in love with this one!

Find out more about Mountains of the Moon and designer Melissa, CLICK HERE.



This next skirt is perfect for tweens and teens - fun and flirty!  It's available at the Etsy shop Seamstress by the Sea.  It's made with an earth friendly fabric of hemp, bamboo and cotton.  Handmade and available in a wide selection of colors.



The handmade top shown below is from HYPERCLASH and is made from 100% fine jersey cotton and recycled/upcycled embellishments.


And what is fashion without accessories???  Here are some of my current favorites.




You send the shop your favorite old t-shirt to have it recycled & upcycled into a Boho Chic hobo bag.  I love this idea!!!




I love the color of this one and its simple style.

That's it for today.  Thanks for visiting!  =0)