Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Free Austenesque ebook!

A new site run by authors who write Jane Austen inspired fiction recently launched. It is called Austen Authors and I highly suggest you check it out! I hope someday to also be an "Austen Author," although Fitz and Lizzie is a completely different genre than most of the Austenesque books out there . . . we shall be the first Austen kid's book . . . but I digress . . .

Now through 10/2/10 you can get a FREE copy of the ebook version of According to Jane by Marilyn Brant . . . her publisher is giving away free ebook copies to celebrate the launch of her new book Friday Mornings at Nine. You can click over to the post about the free ebook on Austen Authors here. I just downloaded it for the Kindle application on my iPhone!

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Getting a Handle on Christmas

Let me preface this post by admitting that I am a total nerd . . . and I like to gift-give and plan . . . and (just to reiterate) am a total nerd.

So there are only 88 days until Christmas! That may seem like a lot, but it will whizz by before you know it! And I only have four paychecks left before I'm done with the whole working full time thing (at least for now) so I want to make sure I have Christmas all sorted out.

You may remember me posting awhile back about wanting to win a gift code from CSN stores so I could get the kids this for Christmas:

How awesome is this kitchen? They also had it in pink (oddly for like $40 less than the red which I guess is more popular), but as James is the one most fascinated by play kitchens I think we should stick with the uber hip retro red. I really, really wanted to get this kitchen, but it was $174, and I just could not justify spending that much. So I set out to win a CSN gift code giveaway. And I did! I thought if I could win at least $60 toward it I would be able to justify it in my own mind and I won $125 CSN gift code on Mommy I'm Hungry! $125! Which brings my grand total for this kitchen to $54! It is on it's way, via UPS, to Grammy's (whose garage I am using to stash all of my presents) at this very moment.
I also have a stocking stash in my desk at work, mostly little coloring books and stuff I have found in the $1 bin. It seems to be all Toy Story and Winnie the Pooh related - except for the Tinkerbelle socks.

So with the big present out of the way, I was able last week to work some amazing couponing and sales magic at Toys R Us. They were having a buy 2 get the 3rd free on several items, and I was able to use two $5 off of $25 coupons as well . . . here is the loot I got!

Three Disney princess items - the Cinderella is for Grammy to give to Maddie, the Snow White broom and cleaning set is actually for both Maddie and James, to compliment the kitchen - they had these sets at the princess house at the fair and both kids went ga-ga over them, the princess makeup set was my free item ($15.99) and Maddie will be thrilled as she loves applying makeup, especially lipstick which she calls "stickie."

The regular size Toy Story action figures were also buy 2 get 1, and while they were out of Woody and Jessie, I managed to snag the last two Buzz Lightyears in the store, one for each of the kids (Maddie is obssessed with Buzz Lightyear, obsessed is actually too mild a word) and got a free green alien to go with the Buzzes ($7.99).

The Cars toys are for the Jamie-miester and were $3.99 each, with the third being free, and the Winnie the Pooh and Toy Story books are for both kids, while the potty training book came home early. It makes all sorts of fun noises and the kids love it. I got the Winnie the Pooh book for free at ($4.99).

So, add this all up with my $10 off and I have a total savings of . . . wait for it . . . wait for it . . . math was never my strong suit. . . $42.96! And you can't be taxed on free (suck it Sacramento!), so that is another 4 bucks saved! Suh-weet. Let us pause for a moment as I congratulate myself.

Still pausing . . . still congratulating.

Ok. I am good.

So basically, I am almost done with Christmas for the two tiny people. There are several more things I am making for them, but the buying is pretty much done. And I am pretty much awesomesauce. Oh wait, I said I was done congratulating myself. Ahem.

How are you doing on Christmas? Have you started shopping yet? Started thinking about it yet? I will admit there is something also to be said for waiting until the last minute and striking like a ninja at 8 p.m. on Christmas eve. What are your thoughts?

Just for fun, here is a picture of James being attacked by a wild Tigger:

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

The Los Angeles County Fair

I love the fair. It was such a major part of my childhood. This year we got season passes and we've already been twice, with plans to go back at least two more times!

Here are just a few things you can do at the LA County fair: Get your teeth whitened, buy an LA Dodgers themed coffin and/or urn, eat chocolate covered bacon, buy a squirmy wormy, see life-sized animated dinos, dress up like a knight or princess and play in a princess house . . .
see pirates do acrobatics, go through an ice city, see a cow give birth, pet goats, get an accupressure massage, buy a mattress, eat fried clams, s'mores, twinkies (you name it and someone has already thought to fry it) . . .
see a monkey show, look at quilts, look at fancy table settings, ride ponies, watch a blacksmith make a horseshoe, buy a geode, watch a Roy Rogers Rangers mounted horseback shooting competition . . .
and much, much more!

Monday, September 20, 2010

A Present a Week 'Til Christmas

Following along with Deb's (from Works in Progress) A Present a Week 'Til Christmas - oh my gosh there are only (as of this posting) 95 days, 6 hours and 39 minutes left until Christmas!
These are technically not Christmas gifts, they are pre-Christmas gifts . . . scarves for Maddie and James to wear for Christmas-y events such as tree shopping, Santa pictures, and for our holiday photos this year. But it's something that is ON the Christmas sewing list so I am counting it! Especially as not much else got made this week! ( I haven't even cut the random threads off of these yet, or ironed them either, but wanted to get my post up as I didn't post last week!)

Sunday, September 12, 2010

Let us encourage one another

Let us not give up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but let us encourage one another — and all the more as you see the Day approaching.
Hebrews 10:25

Today is National Encouragement Day and I was honored to receive a pack of Hope and Encouragement greeting cards from Dayspring to use to encourage women in my life.

I was able to send 9 out of the 10 cards this week. Some of the cards went to women who are my close friends, others went to women who, honestly, may be surprised to receive a card from me. I am sure that is more my failing than theirs.

The cards were absolutely beautiful, and I was thrilled to have the opportunity to use them.

The women I sent them to are as varied as the cards themselves - a friend, a mother, a cousin, a college student, a warrior against cancer, a woman who is helping reach her peers for Christ, a woman whose husband happens to be a pastor (I have such an aversion to the term pastor's wife - as if that is all the identity a woman has), and women who are just trying to make life the best they can everyday.

As I sent out these cards I realized that I am privileged to know each of them.

I hope that you take the time today, and throughout the week, to encourage someone in your life.

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Shop Feature - Studio H Designs

Awhile ago I won an awesome giveaway on The Ivy Twines for a set of monogram wooden letters from Studio H Designs. I love initials and monograms (my friend makes fun of me for paying as much attention to initials as I do), so I was really excited to get monogram letters for James! He and I have the same initials actually! The awesome Charissa of Studio H Designs was absolutely lovely to work with and put up with me not knowing at first what I wanted. I decided that Jamie's "big boy room" is going to have a sort of vintage baseball feel (oh my gosh, you are all so surprised, aren't you?). Charissa knocked it out of the park! Here is a mock up she sent me to approve - my incredibly detailed directions to her were vintage, baseball and red, I prefer to let the artist work - ok I really prefer not to have to think to hard . . .

When the letters arrived I was totally in love with them. They are great quality and just gorgeous!


Studio H Designs offers Monograms, like the ones I won, in a variety of colors and themes, how cute are these?
As well as individual letters so you can spell out a name or word. Perfect for nurseries!
Charrisa is also an amazing photographer and offers prints, photo cards and photo bookmarks in her shop too!

She also has sewn items in her shop like adorable wristlet key fobs.
I asked Charissa for some info about her and her shop to share with Narnia Mum readers:
- I am a stay at home mom of a 3 year old daughter who loves to 'make' with me. My major in college was Art! Photography and oil painting.
- I started this business when my husband was in seminary, trying to earn some extra money while doing what I love.
- We live in Birmingham, Alabama.
- I offer a giveaway at least once every other month. They are announced through my newsletters which are sent out 7-12 times a year. To sign up for my newsletter, visit (there is a giveaway going on now!)
Charissa has generously offered a discount to Narnia Mum readers!
You can get 20% off a wooden monogram set or 10% off any other wooden letter purchase (for example if you want to spell out a name or phrase like the "BABY" pictured earlier).
All you have to do is mention this Narnia Mum post when you purchase and the discounted amount will be returned to your paypal after purchase. How awesome is that?
Many thanks to Charissa for all her help with Jamie's lovely monogram letters, and with her patience with me! Make sure you visit her shop and blog!

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Nicey Jane Giveaway Winner!

The winner of the six Nicey Jane fat quarters is . . .

drumroll please . . .

Comment #168 is from Texana who said:

Congratulations Texana, you should be receiving an email from me shortly for your shipping information!