Keeping busy and another Fix

Hi there…

Since cutting Facebook ties, I’ve literally felt a monstrous weight off my shoulders. I’ve had more time to work on NEW projects for my shop and soon I’ll be debuting them. My shop’s main focus has always been centered on Military Pride, and I’m working on introducing some organizing tools that will help military families, civilian families too, keep things tidy on a day-to-day basis. I’m really excited to share them with you… stay tuned.

Speaking of organizing. I’ve been doing a lot more of it. I’ll be posting about that, hopefully, this week. Since we’ll be PCSing (Permanent Change of Station, a grand ol’ military acronym for moving) at the end of the year, we, and I really mean I, need to make sure we’re as prepared as possible.

Our little guy is growing up far too quickly, as they do. He doesn’t say much but he is plum full of mischief. He’s enjoying preschool and loves his teachers a ton.

 

My fourth fix arrived a bit later than usual this month because of a technical problem, but once it did arrive, I was very happy with it.  On to the Fix.

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A very Merry Christmas and Happy New Year everyone!!!

With the end of a year comes a new one and with it, resolutions.

I always seem to have more than one resolution… and they’re perpetual.  In fact, they never really change much.  2013’s were;

1.  Budget

2.  Business

3.  Blog

While I think I did pretty well on two of the three (Budget and Business) I hope this year’s resolutions will help with the third, Blog.

 

And my resolutions for 2014 are….. drum rolling…..

 

1.  Spend less, save more.

2.  Organize.  Organize.  Organize.

3.  Work out more.

 

I know the first, “Spend less, save more.”, is almost the exact same thing as last year’s “Budget”, we have a ton going on in 2014, so I’m wording it a bit different.

Numero dos is one of my favorite things to do.  I’m a bit of an organizing junky.  Sometimes the keeping up with it is a bit difficult, especially with a 2-year-old and a husband that is in and out of the state, let alone the house.  Organizing is a circle though, not a straight line.  You have to keep up with it in order for it to work.

The third, is going to be a bit more of a challenge since we’re moving.  But I love a challenge.  Moving from Honolulu to Kittery and Kittery to Guam, will not only bring big changes in weather, we’ll also have endless schedule changes.  But again, challenges can be fun, right?

One of the many things I’ll be using to help me with my resolutions this year is a Erin Condren Life Planner.

 EC logo

I do love my iPhone and its great connectivity to my iCalendar & Reminders on my Mac Mini and iPad, I’ve always been the pen and paper loving gal too.  I end up writing to-do list after to-do list and use hundreds of post-its all the time.  Inevitably I end up frustrated because there are not only duplicates, but I second guess myself wondering “now did I write this down or did I put it on my phone?”.  That’s where Ms. Erin Condren’s Life Planner comes in.

If you haven’t been over to her website, ErinCondren.com, hurry.  Go… right now.  Well, not right now.  Finish reading this post first, then hurry on over.  And be sure to finish reading because there’s a money-saving tip below. 🙂

She’s got such Ah-Maaayyy-zing things going on over there.

calendars. planners. gift wrap. iPhone cases. acrylic boxes and trays. pens. stationery of all kinds. and SOOO much more…

I have literally spent hours on her site lately adding things to my wish list and putting together my planner.  You don’t have to spend hours, like I have, you can put something together pretty quickly… I’m just that picky.

While her stuff isn’t cheap, it’s wellll worth every penny from what I’ve seen on all kinds of reviews on YouTube, Facebook, tons of blogs, and of course my favorite social media site, Pinterest.  Every planner is hand-made right here in the good ol’ US of A too!!!  Yet another great thing I love about Erin Condren.  Too much merchandise is made outside of our country these days, so I love that I’m supporting another one of America’s own.  While Erin Condren has become very VERY popular, I love that she started small like my little business has.  I don’t know that {the little black boat.} or Jessica Fawn Designs will ever be as successful as ErinCondren.com, but knowing she did it gives me the drive to do better and better each and every day.

Now onto that money-saving tip I mentioned.  ErinCondren.com has a great referral program.

Here’s how it works:

When you click here and sign up for an account, you’ll receive an email with a $10 OFF coupon code to use on your first purchase.  Once you’ve made your first purchase, Erin Condren.com will send me a $10 OFF coupon code too.

Now that is a MAJOR “win, win”, right?

 

After I buy my EC Life Planner, I’ll be sure to post my own review and maybe an “un-boxing” video when the pretty-box-of-planning-life-goodness arrives at my door step.

I think I’ll do a giveaway with that post.  What do you think??  Would you like to win a little Erin Condren somthin’ somethin’.  🙂
With only 10 days left in 2013, I’ll say a very happy good-bye to a pretty amazing year and hope 2014 is just as great if not better!!!

 

A very Merry Christmas and Happy New Year everyone!!!

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A New Year with New Year’s Resolutions

Do you have a New Year’s Resolution? I’ve never been one to make them but this year I thought I’d make a few… yup, three.

Funny enough, they all start with the letter B. HA HA HA… that rhymed.
Anyways… onto my Resolutions.

1. Budget
2. Blog
3. Business

First up- Budget.

We’ve all seen how down-right-awful our economy is and, sadly, I don’t think it’s going to get any better anytime soon. Matt and I haven’t been one to pinch pennies, but it’s starting to get scary so I thought it wouldn’t be a bad idea to look at our finances real hard and start saving more and spending less.

Several things have helped out before I started to make a “budget”. One of our Jeeps is paid off. Having one car payment is nice. I started meal planning a month at a time, which is a great time and money saver. Not to mention whenever Matt asks, “Whats for dinner?” I know I can tell him and not have to think, “Oh no, I have no clue.”

Recently I sat down with my trusty month menu board and put together 5 separate lists on my grocery list app. Labeled Week 1, Week 2, and so on, I know exactly what I need to get at the commissary for that weeks meals. Of course some things are a weekly add-on (milk, bread, eggs, lunch meat, etc.).

I came across a pin on Pinterest about budgeting and having seven (yup, 7) bank accounts to keep track and stay on budget. (Check it out here) Jordan’s blog is packed with amazing info. Since reading her post, I opened a few more accounts and got down to business with my new budget. I’m starting off slow but as time goes on I’ll be able to become a bit more strict. Matt thought I was a little nuts, I think, but he gets it. I now have a set amount for my weekly trips to the commissary, his golfing, gas for both Jeeps, haircuts, the whole bit. It’s all mapped out nice and neat.

It felt nice when I was done putting pen to paper. I felt like I had some form of control of something in our crazy world.

Do you have a set budget for your family?

Onto number 2.

Blog.

Well I haven’t done much of it. Which is sad. I love to write and I’ve had so little time to do it. So I’ve told myself, “Self!!! You enjoy writing. After putting little man down at night, or while he is napping, DO IT!!! Those chores can wait. Write!” So I’m going to. Damn it!!! I’m going to write!!

I’ve been redesigning a new blog over at WordPress for a little while and once all the kinks are out, I’ll make the transition over there. I really like Blogger… but it’s time for a change. With so many restrictions and various scares with privacy in today’s world, I would much rather have complete control over all of my content which I just can’t do on Blogger and I can on WordPress. Since I own my own domain and hosting, it’s all up to me.

The new design is completely done by me, which I also love. It’s become my new project and one day, job. It’s so much fun. I’ve already got a few designs for some friends done. I’m just waiting to install them.

Do you blog?

And the last B… Business.

This one is kind of connected to the last in that I’m getting into designing websites and blogs. As I mentioned, I’ve already designed a few blogs for some friends, I’m also working on one for a gal in New York with a cookie shop. I was listening to Tom Sullivan’s radio show a couple months ago and she called about how having a specific political sign in her shop’s window had affected her business. Tom asked her how people could order cookies and she told him via phone. Well he put her phone number on the air and wouldn’t you know her phone was busy for hours. I tried and tried to call to order some cookies. By the time I could call it was after 8 PM her time (only 2 PM here in HI) and she was still taking orders.

We talked for a short while about being small business owners and she had mentioned on Tom’s show that she didn’t have a website. Well that had to be remedied. I told her I’d love to design her site and at no cost to her. She was delighted and insisted I take some cookies as a thank you. Who was I to deny cookies?

Since we spoke, we’ve emailed a few times, the election has come and gone, and I’ve got a bunch of ideas for her site. Can’t wait to share it with the world and all the cookie lovers out there.

So that’s it for my resolutions… Do you have a New Year’s Resolution?

Happy New Year!!!

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{a few things I love}

2012-06-11 1 wm

Seeing this sweet little face everyday.

 

{the little black boat.}

The revamping of my business.

 

 2012-06-11 2 wm

When the pups are all curled up next to each other with their toys.  Even when they look annoyed that I’m taking their picture.  ha ha ha.

 

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It’s coming… soon… and I need your help.

The Little Black Boat…

This is the name of my new military pride business. And I need your help… I’m in the process of creating samples to take pictures of to post on my new website, one for each branch of the service. I’ve already got the Navy, Coast Guard, & Marines but I’m missing one for the Air Force & Army. So, are you looking for a FREE military pride sign? If you’re married to a member of the Air Force or Army and wouldn’t mind giving me some info about where you’ve been stationed, it’s yours. Keep in mind this will be given to the first person to respond for those two branches of the military. All I’ll need is the places you were stationed and years you were there. For examples, my husband and I were stationed at Submarine School in Groton, CT from 2003-2006. That’s it. No names or anything, just the command (if you want), location, and years you were stationed there.

If you or you know someone who might want to be one of the two, please leave a comment below with your email address and I’ll contact you.

I’ll be posting more info about {the little black boat.} very soon, so be sure to come back soon.

YAY! Paint has arrived!!!

After ordering my acrylic paint over a month ago, it finally arrived today!!! I’m so excited to finally be able to get painting all my fun military pride signs. The Little Black Boat is finally getting ready for its maiden voyage.

Off to sanding and painting I go. 🙂

It’s been a while…

After talking to my dear father-in-law early this morning (while waiting in line at 2:45 AM for the Black Friday sale at the NEX), I’ve decided to try my best to blog more often.

I guess more people were reading it then I thought.

So what have I been up to?

Well I’m in the midst of starting a new little business venture; wooden military pride signs. My new little business is affectionately called The Little Black Boat and signs will vary. The main one, that I know should do well, will consist of saying “Home is where the (branch of service) sends us”. In our case it’ll be “Home is where the Navy sends us”. Under this main sign will be little placards that read each location we’ve been stationed.

I’m waiting on the acrylic paint I ordered, over a month ago, to arrive so I can post a picture. Once I have it I’ll be sure to post for all to see. I’m also working with someone now to design my website, Facebook Fan Page, and Twitter account. I’ll be sure to post all that info once it goes live.

I’m still making handmade cards. I don’t think I’ll ever stop that… I love it too much. I had a few classes last month, making holiday cards, and then one earlier this month making cards for troops stationed overseas to send to their loved ones.

That’s all I’ve been up to lately… I’ll be sure to post again soon.

Lots of love!!!