Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Plum District: $60 voucher to EcoMom for $21 = 5 packages of diapers for $4.20 each shipped

Plum District- a deal of the day site offering both national and local deals- is giving 30% off the purchase of all deals when the promo code plumlove is used at checkout through Friday. Some people are also reporting that if you are a first-time sign-up, they are getting a $10 credit to their account!

Plum District also has a deal on a voucher to EcoMom.com this week, a site offering all-natural and organic products for babies, kids, and parents. For $30, you can snag a $60 voucher. But then use the plumlove code at checkout to bump the price down to just $21! Shipping is included.

Visit Plum District under their “everywhere” deals, to find the EcoMom sale.

If you’re in the market for diapers, here’s a great way to get a nice deal on some chlorine-free, eco-friendly ones using this Plum deal.

1. Buy the EcoMom voucher for $21, after using the promo code at checkout.

2. Once your voucher is ready to use, visit EcoMom and go to the diapers. (My voucher was ready immediately.)

3. Add 5 packs of Nature BabyCare diapers to your shopping cart.

4. Go to checkout and enter your PlumDistrict voucher code.

5. Your total should be $0 with free shipping. Proceed through checkout.

That comes out to paying just $4.20 a pack for eco-friendly diapers, or (13.5 cents each for size 3).

Ecomom also has some Melissa & Doug products on sale. I see baby bjorn stuff and cloth diapers too!

Monday, September 26, 2011

$49 - Monarch: 'Transcendent' Dinner for 2 w/Wine, Reg. $127

We love Monarch! Dan and I ate here when our friend Garrett was working in the kitchen, learning to be a chef. This place is really good and this looks like a pretty good deal. I'm considering telling Dan to buy it for my birthday.

$49 - Monarch: 'Transcendent' Dinner for 2 w/Wine, Reg. $127

Sunday, September 25, 2011

Land's End Convertible Diaper Bag for $12 shipped

Convertible Backpack Diaper Bag $11.25 at lands end

Lands end has this Diaper bag for $15,

use code DISCOVER and pin 6956 for additional 25% off and free shipping.

for me it was $11.85 after tax.

There are many colors available.

There are mixed reviews, but Land's End makes pretty good bags so I am risking it :)

Saturday, September 24, 2011

Leard/Tanamachi Shower in Mesquite

This shower was held at my mom's house in Mesquite, TX. It was mostly for my side of the family and friends. Also whale themed!

Dan and I made whale cookies to give as favors! I got the idea to shift the icing color as I went from Beth's cupcakes. Some are light blue, some are dark, some are more grey, some are more blue-green, etc.

Cute whale clothes and some repurposed decorations ;)

My mom's idea to make it look "under the sea"

I get the comfy chair!

VIP's. From left, future grandma "JoJo" Janis, soon to be great-grandma Nana, and future great-aunt Lynda.

Mom really wanted a Mavericks theme - so this is her hold out decoration.

I made these to put together in a book later.

Nana noshing.

Work friends of mom. So glad they could be there!

One of the games - cut up pictures of Dan and me to create what Jonah would look like!

My aunt Lynda embroidered this for us - I love my face but my mom's is even better!

Sweet friend Megan was one of the winners of baby-gift BINGO.

Leard family photo. From left, Uncle Jefferson, Me, Lucy, Dan, Nana, "PawPaw," "JoJo" and Aunt Lynda.

SO HAPPY to see my friend Rachel who lives in Waco!

Friday, September 23, 2011

Baby Backpack for Dan

So far, I have yet to buy a diaper bag. Thanks to an AWESOME friend, I was given a gorgeous pre-loved Kate Spade baby bag in great condition, which I plan to use personally. It definitely looks like a purse. I like it that way.

However, I realize that when Dan has baby duty or when we go out together and he needs to carry the supplies, he might be less-than-stoked to carry around what looks like a purse. He assures me that he is willing to carry anything, and I know he will because he loves me. But since he hasn't had as many fun baby gifts yet, I suggested we go to REI and buy him a cool-looking backpack that's water resistant, wipable, and usable as a baby backpack even though it looks nothing like it. We have three now we are trying to choose between, what do you think?

Source: rei.com via Brittany on Pinterest

Option #1

Source: rei.com via Brittany on Pinterest

Option #2

Source: rei.com via Brittany on Pinterest

Option #3

When the REI employee asked if he could help us, I explained what we were shopping for, and how we were actually going to use it as a diaper bag, which meant it needed to be wipable or washable. I could tell he didn't really like the idea of any of those awesome bags getting soiled. He said, "all I can think of is baby poop all over it." I did explain we would use wet bags.

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Gracey Shower in Dallas

This shower was given to us by Dan's family. Dan's mom Dotty is one of 6 six sisters, daughters of John and Martha Gracey. All the sisters now have so many kids who are cousins, and many of them still live in the Dallas area, so they have throwing baby and bridal showers down to an art. All the Gracey sisters (Dan's aunts) pitch in, plus my sister's-in-law Sarah and Ellen. It was held at St. Mark Presbyterian Church in Dallas.

Beautiful cake made by cousin Lauren.

Diaper cake made by Ellen. She also hand painted the wooden letters for Jonah's room!

My friend Caroline was able to be there!

About to open gifts, Dan is caught on camera.

Dotty explaining her gift to me:

She gave us a subscription to Growing Child, a monthly newsletter that helps you understand your child — why he does certain things at certain times, what he's learning by doing them, and what you can do to help him develop. Each monthly issue of Growing Child matches the age of your child. Growing Child will keep you informed about what to expect at each stage of your child's development, and how to deal with each month's changes and challenges.

Sweet sister.

From left, me, Dan, Memama (Martha Gracey), Philip, Dotty, and Ellen

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Trinity Shower in SLO

This week will be mostly some blogging of photos from some of my baby showers friends and family so graciously gave us this summer/fall. To start, the sweet ladies of Trinity Presbyterian in San Luis Obispo gave me a sweet, crafty shower in July while we were in California. It was the beginning of many whale-themed events to come.

Cute whale cupcakes made by Beth Appel.

Favors also made by Beth.

Chip and Beth's house decorated so cute!

Playing a game. Guests had to mold play doh into a baby behind their backs.

Picking the winner

Andrea, on the left, also hosted. Friend Annie on the right. Chip watching strategically from the food area.

Friday, September 16, 2011

Give them Grace - Review, Study & Resources

This summer I was able to help lead a quick book study with some moms on this book, Give Them Grace: Dazzling Your Kids with the Love of Jesus. The book has lots of good things in it. There are some things I don't agree with, things I would challenge, but I'd definitely affirm:

  • The authors expose the formula many of us operate on in raising children: Good parenting in, good children out.
  • The authors correct this false formula: "Parenting with grace must not be employed as another formula to try and control God and your children." - page 52.
  • On page 54, "One way to judge is to consider your reaction when your children fail."
  • And page 59, "There are no promises in the Bible that even our best parenting will produce good children. None."
  • "God may use your parenting as a means to draw your children to himself. But he may use other means and at a different time. Or he may use your child's rebellion and disinterest as a way to accomplish his unexpected will." - page 61.
The book has discussion questions for each chapter, some are good, some need work.

As part of our discussion, I also wrote a case study to help us talk about some of the principles, with accompanying questions. You can access it here:

We also read this article from The Gospel Coalition Blog:

Which was somewhat in response to the July/August 2011 cover article from The Atlantic:

How to Land Your Kid in Therapy - Why the obsession with our kids' happiness may be dooming them to unhappy adulthoods. A therapist and mother reports.

And I wrote these discussion questions:

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

DIY Flower Hairpins & Washcloth Lollipops

Made these for friends & family and packaged them with some baby bath products or lotion for a fun & cute gift. Lots of baby showers these days....

I still need some work/help on putting it together for presentation...

I was inspired and helped to make these hairpins by my dear friend Andrea (check out her blog and etsy site). I gave them away as party favors at one shower, game prizes at another, and part of a hostess gift for another.

Monday, September 12, 2011

DIY Wedding Programs Created by Me

These are the wedding programs I created and assembled for my wedding in 2008. I always planned to post pics of the process and never did.

I used red card-stock for the backing, and cream colored paper that I printed the pages from my designs on the computer for the other layers. I used a corner-cutting punch to make the corners curved and then tied all the layers together with gold ribbon.

I had lots of help from friends and family assembling it all as well :)

Here are some more photos

Saturday, September 10, 2011

Nationwide Free Night of Theater!

Theatre Communications Group's

Over the past six years the Free Night of Theater program has introduced more than 250,000 new theatergoers to the thrill of live performance. This year tickets will be offered for performances from October 1-31. Tickets become available beginning in September.

This is apparently a nationwide event. Click here for more information on how to get free theater tickets at a location near you:

St. Louis tickets will be given away for the following theaters starting Sept 19:

Avalon Theatre Company (enter to win 2 tickets to Oct 15 performance of PORTRAIT OF MY PEOPLE)

Black Cat Theatre

Insight Theatre (enter to win 2 tickets to Oct 1 or Oct 2 performance of RABBIT HOLE)

The Black Rep

The Repertory Theatre of St. Louis

Upstream Theatre

I am bummed, because since the tickets will be for October, it won't likely be possible for me to go, but I hope someone else does!

Monday, September 5, 2011

Sweepstakes loot

About to list all this on ebay

-- Sent from my Palm Pixi

Friday, September 2, 2011

Smith Update - The Return to St. Louis

We met up with Patty (Brittany's mom) and her friends who were vacationing in California. We toured The Hearst Castle.

Inside of Hearst Castle - this dining room was used for inspiration for the dining hall in the Harry Potter movies.

Awesome pool.

Awesome pool #2 - indoors.

Last sunday at Trinity Pres in SLO - sweet friends.

This was the group of regulars from Theology Pub for college students that Dan went to most Monday nights.

Dan with the Trinity elders.

Sweet friends, from L to R: Julia, Iris and Annie.

We love the Appels!

Sunset at the Hermosa Inn on the way back to Texas.

Happy 3rd anniversary!

The summer flew by, and it’s already been a month since we drove east toward the rising sun, away from the Pacific Ocean and the wonderful people of Trinity Presbyterian Church in San Luis Obispo. Though the internship ended, our full schedule did not.

  • Dan preached our last Sunday at Trinity Pres in SLO - it was a great way to end, although sad to say goodbye to all our wonderful friends in California.
  • The Hermosa Inn, Paradise Valley, AZ. Our first stop driving east was at this wonderful boutique inn in Scottsdale, AZ. We stayed two nights for our 3rd wedding anniversary and began readjusting to the heat we did NOT face in SLO. We highly recommend this inn- especially if you get a deal through Jetsetter.com
  • We stayed a week in Texas- splitting between Dan’s hometown- Longview, and the Dallas area. We had two baby showers- one from the Gracey clan (Dan’s mom’s family) and one from the Tanamachis, Menascos, Leard, and friends. We enjoyed celebrating with our friends and family the coming arrival of Jonah. We also stopped in Tulsa, OK for a night, to see our niece Katherine’s baptism Sunday morning. Our travels through Texas and Oklahoma provided great time with friends and family.
  • We separated for our drive back to STL and Brittany drove our new Jeep Grand Cherokee- a great and truly appreciated gift from Dan’s parents. Thank you so much!!!
  • Since being back in STL, we’ve: continued prepping our 300 sq ft apartment for Jonah’s arrival; started a 6 weeks childbirth class at the hospital; Dan’s returned to free-lance landscaping and Brittany has substituted taught at Covenant Christian School.
  • Dan’s school started back this week. He’s excited about his classes- especially his class about the Psalms and Wisdom Literature of the Bible, and a class about Leadership and system dynamics in relationship in ministry. Brittany will also spend time at the seminary this year- she will be a Teaching Assistant and Grader for one of her great education professors- Dr. Donald Guthrie.

Life is pretty much getting back to normal... except we have a baby coming in about a month!!!


We are grateful for how the Lord blessed us this summer. Please give thanks with us for:

  • The hospitality and love of the folks of Trinity Presbyterian Church and the Medlock family for letting us live with them
  • Much love and support showered during several baby showers
  • A great safe car for Brittany and Jonah- Dan’s parents’ former Jeep Grand Cherokee. Now we have a safe place for a car-seat that has working AC.
  • A wonderful scholarship from First Presbyterian Church, Longview, TX
  • An amazing blessing of a full tuition waver from the seminary. The scholarship is for students in their final year, planning to enter pastoral ministry, and who met certain qualifications.

Please Pray

  • For Jonah’s continued development and preparation for his arrival in about a month
  • Brittany’s health as she becomes more uncomfortable and closer to delivery
  • Dan as he tries to figure out how to balance caring for Brittany and Jonah, as well as diligence in study, and regularity in his landscaping work.
  • Our future as Dan starts applying for jobs for when he graduates in May.

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