New Stamps Hop with Kellie Winnell


Hello friends.

Whether you know it or not, you're in the middle of a small blog hop to showcase new stamps by Kellie Winnell and yours truly;). 

See that 'Awesomeness' stamp? That stamp along with the ones on the project below can be found here.  They are part of a really unique clear stamp set by Kellie.  Her shop is filled with cuteness like this...perfect for cards, smashing, and scrapbooking.  Love 'em!

These two new digis, "Summer Swing" and "Jelly Bug", will be available in my shop March 1st along with a few other new sweeties:).


If you'd like to see more projects from our design teams, follow the hop order below.  You should start with Kellie...her blog is filled with, well, awesomeness...

...so grab a coffee or tea and have fun checking all the projects out!


Be sure to leave comments through the hop as their are stamps to be won!  
***I am giving away my full March 1st release to a randomly chosen comment on this post:).*** Check back Wednesday (March 6th) for the winner! 

Have  wonderful Wednesday friends!


Captivating Winners:)


This past week looks like a blur in the rear view mirror!  I honestly can't remember what I really did that made me feel so busy, but it sure did feel that way:).

Over the weekend, Phil and I attended a marriage conference at our church called The Art of Marriage.  It probably sounds more grueling than enjoyable, but it was actually really, really fun!  We learned so much. Went out for a late dinner Friday night.  And spent the night at a hotel 15 minutes from our home, haha.  We just hung out, (okay. we did more than just hang out...;) and spent a lot of time talking about what God desires from our marriage and our hearts.  We even wrote love letters to each other during the conference.  Talk about water works. I was a blubbering mess:)...but it isn't everyday I get to read a heartfelt, vulnerable, and totally honest love letter from my dude.

One thing Phil really loved was the idea of leaving a legacy for future generations through a marriage that honors God.  Raising children in a home where a marriage thrives as the covenant God intends it to be~ that is something that will strengthen our children's marriages...and their children's marriages...and so on.  There is a quote I just love in our booklet from the conference that says, "Children are the living messages we send to a time we will not see."  That is an amazing thought and a humbling responsibility that God entrusts us with.

So, it was a crazy week and a wonderfully blessed weekend.  Thanks for being patient with me taking a little break from blogging this week.  It is nice to take those breaks and live without the thought, 'oh, I should blog this.'  This week was freeing in many ways...and now I'm all refreshed to be back:).

Here are the 30 winners for the Captivating book giveaway.
**Each of you will need to email me at krista7smith@yahoo.com to receive your book.
**Please use the subject line CAPTIVATING and send me your mailing address.

Joni (no link)

Be sure to email me by Friday to claim your book~ all books not spoken for by then will be given to other commenters:).

Thank you to everyone who entered the book giveaway!  If you'd like to purchase the book, it can be found here.  There are audio versions available, too!  (cd and download)

Hope you all have an amazing week!




Sometimes I get asked about what tattoos I have. 
And what they are for.

My left arm is getting close to half a sleeve. 
On my right forearm, I have an angel.
And on my right collar bone, I have a simple design with hidden words. 


My Johnny Cash~ that one is for Phil.  It reads, "When you go, I want to go too."
Meaning, life wouldn't be the same without Phil...He just makes my heart breathe.  
And I couldn't live without the guy:).
So why Cash?...I love his music. 
I know his life was far from perfect. But he loved God, and he loved people.
And he had a compassionate heart toward even the worst of sinners.
And I kinda like that.


I have an A10 Warthog for my dad.
I didn't want to go the 'names' route...so I choose something that reminds me about that person in my life.  My dad use to bolt off the couch whenever he would hear an A10 fly over our house.  And us four kids would take off right after him:).  We would all run out of the house and watch it fly low into the horizon.  I don't know why I've seen so many of that particular plane in my life or why they always seemed to go over our home, but I love those memories.  It is something goofy we shared, but it makes me feel little again...like a happy kid, sharing a moment with her dad.  
I also have Exodus 20:2, because that is his favorite Bible verse. 

My angel is for Niamh.
She is holding a ball/globe sort of deal.  That is because Philly's first real word was 'ball.'

I designed the one on my collar bone.  It is the only 'name-ish' tattoo I have...but you can't tell by looking at it:).  Straight on (if I showed you how to read it), you could read "Niamh."  Upside down (like when I look down and read it), it says "Elphaba."  The Wicked Witch of the West is one of my crushes:).  Love that green chick.  Loved the book 'Wicked.' Loved the musical so much, I've seen it multiple times.  Niamh loves the story of the witch, too...so just combined the two together.

I also have a niece named Elphaba...which is kinda awesome:).

So...That is what I have right now:).
I probably won't touch my legs.  Not my best feature, so no reason to bring more attention to those suckers. 
I would like full sleeves down both arms.  Probably get my ribs and back done.  
And I'd love to get a huge, yellow happy face right on my ars.

Just kidding!!!!!
Gotcha ya:).

I didn't have any before I met Phil.
I did use to color on my jeans:).  I think I was craving ink, but never thought of myself as a tattooed type of person...so I would just color and draw on my clothing, lol.  Then this cute tattooed boy came into my life, and well, the rest is history:).

Have I heard the
"you realize you'll be an 85 year old woman with tattoos someday" comments? 
I get it.  I actually think 85 year old tatted chicks are beyond cool:).
So, I'm okay with it. 
I plan on growing my old lady hair super long and dying it like blue or purple, too.
I might actually rock at 85.

I don't think tattoos are sinful.
A single Bible verse can be used out of context to say something different than what is intended...
I do not believe that God has a problem with ink.
I think the problem could enter the picture when the subject matter is sinful or wicked.
Jesus knows my heart.
I think someday in eternity he'll totally want to check them out.
Cuz I'm his daughter, and he loves my story.
And he put a deep love of art in my soul.

And just for fun-
in case you want to know,
Phil has two creepy, little angel babies (for the kiddos, "creepy" because he didn't want to go the cute route), a pinup girl on the phone (that is me...when I weighed 120lbs and looked 21, lol), a dragon, a crown of thorns, and a USMC bulldog. 

And the kids each have a heart that says 'mom' on their bicep.

So thats' about it.
We like getting inky with it:).
Do you have any tattoos??...


This and That...


This has been our sick month for 2013. 
Good thing we got it behind us early:).
Looking back through my Instagrams over the last couple weeks,
I realized we are either laying on the couch...
Or asleep, laying on the couch.  
Not a whole lot of variety there...
Sometimes the dogs climb up with us. And get their lazy on, too.
That is fun.

I got a new tattoo on my inner arm.
And Philly is finishing up his first season of wrestling.  (He is so cute in the uniform.  I die.)

Niamh just completed a course in 4th grade etiquette.  
I served her class during their luncheon.
And realized I have no etiquette.
I mean,
We have a no farting rule at the dinner table.  
But that is the extent of my etiquette knowledge.
Shame on me.

Phil...he is my whole heart, especially these last few weeks.
I just love that big muscly guy:).
Love his thoughtfulness. 
And genuine desire for Jesus' life in him.
Also, his biceps rock.
Seriously, they are like rocks
Sometimes I just punch him in the bicep really hard to see his reaction.
He just grins:). 
I'm not abusive.  Promise.
It is a love punch and is sometimes followed by a kiss. So totally worth it:).

My house is sort of a disaster.
I haven't run in well over a week because my chest hurts from coughing. 
Oh. And I decided to eat like 88 Girl Scout cookies over the last day and a half. 
So, my hips are like awesome.
(little bit of sarcasm, there.)
But we have watched a bunch of movies as a family while hanging out on the couches:). 
The Goonies and Hotel Transylvania...
We Are Marshall and Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom.
And even though being sick kinda-sorta stinks, it slowed us down a little. 
Made snuggles last even longer.
And our hearts are thankful for that.

Once in a while it is nice to just shut the doors.
Let the dishes pile up in the sink.
Put the laundry on hold...
(we are all in pajamas anyways)
And be a little isolated as a family:)...
No errands.
No stores.
No nothing:).
Just sweet talks, long snuggles, and a stack of movies to watch.
Makes being all germy together kinda worth it;).


Favorite 5.


1.  One of my favorite bloggers.  You can check out a fun interview feature she included me in here:).  Ilene is always good for bringing a smile to her readers!
2.  Pretty flats.  
3.  The Philadelphia Color Run.  I signed up the four of us yesterday-- now to whip these kids' butts into running shape!
4.  Flatback luv.
5.  Prettiest yoga tank.  Ever.

Any favorites in your week?  Be sure to share:)!!
Happy Saturday, friends<3.


Valentine's Giveaway x 30


This has turned into a bit of a giveaway week:).  But that is okay. It is always fun to try and win something, right?:)

I am *most* excited about today's giveaway...kinda been looking forward to it for a while.
I'd even like to introduce you to someone.
She and her husband are amazing authors.
This book changed my life.  I can say that honestly, without any exaggeration. 
And right now, Phil and I are in the middle of a couple more books~ also, a DVD series. 

Their names are John and Stasi Eldredge.  Many of you have probably heard of them and even read some of the same books I cherish. 

I wanted to do a really fun Valentine's giveaway...something that went good with hearts and love...And while I was thinking about it, I was doing a little shopping in the Ransomed Heart shop for Phil.  That's when it hit me- I want to give something that really touches someone's heart...
~~~Not just an oh! I won! happy heart thing~~~
But something real.  Something beautiful.  Something Captivating.
I wrote Stasi and asked if she would like to chime in on my little blog space today-- 
Which she was willing to do.  And that made my week:)...

So, enjoy a little from a wonderful author...and be sure to read all the way to the bottom for the giveaway details!

Happy Valentine’s Day!
For those who don’t care much for pink and red and hearts all over – they are about to melt away for another year. But whether you like them or not, Valentine’s Day is here. My sons refer to it as “Single’s Awareness Day”. Man this holiday can prick.
I’ve been single on it and not. I’ve been in a good place in my marriage on it and not. I’ve yet to receive a frilly heart shaped box filled with chocolates or be swept off my feet by the love of my life clenching a rose between his teeth. Ah well, a girl can dream.
Through the years and regardless of what has been going on in my relationship(s), I have had a thing for Valentine’s Day. I love it. I love “love”. I love celebrating the centrality of the heart. I love being pricked in the places where I long for more. (And no, I’m not usually a masochist.)
See, I’ve fallen in love with my capital “V” Valentine. There is One who sees me always, loves me deeply and understands me fully. There is One who gets my jokes, my sorrows, my failures and never turns his face away. I am loved. Completely, fully, totally. By One who pursues me with sunsets, shooting stars, the feel of a gentle breeze and yes, chocolate.
Jesus is my Valentine. He loves me today. Always has, always will. He loves you, too. It’s really him who is asking, “Will you be Mine?”. I’ve answered him “yes” and discovered a love worthy of Happy Heart Day and every other day of my life.
May your day be blessed. May you know that whatever is happening around you or within you – you are loved. Today and every day.
~Stasi Eldredge

I bought 30 Captivating books to giveaway to readers. 
It is a book about God's pursuit of the female heart...
Because your heart is important and precious to the Creator. 
So, on Valentine's Day, I have something for your heart:).  
For reals. 

To enter, please be a follower of my blog and leave a comment. 
What is something your heart longs for?  

Only one entry per person, as the odds are already pretty nice with 30 winners.
International girls are welcomed to comment and win as well:).
And if you already read it, enter anyways and give it to someone you love!

Wishing everyone a very sweet Valentine's Day...

**This giveaway is closed.


$1500 Giveaway!

This is an AWESOME giveaway put together by a bunch of us bloggers-- a $1500 Visa gift card for one lucky person!

For a chance to win, please leave a comment below telling everyone what you would do with an extra $1500!...This is your mandatory entry to be considered for the prize.  Also, log in below for bonus entries...It can only increase your chances:).

Winner is chosen randomly via the Rafflecopter on February 21.
The winner will be contacted via email.

Happy Valentine's Day, lovelies!!

**This giveaway is now closed. The winner was contacted via email with her prize details. Thank you everyone who entered! <3


LETs PiN ... and WIN some COPIC MARKERS!!

I'd like to invite you all to join in another Pinterest contest:).  This one is set up a little different, and should be really fun:).  Also, it is up to you to increase your chance of winning-- so you control the outcome to a degree...

Please pay CAREFUL attention to the rules.  Failure to comply with the way the game is set up will cause your board to be disqualified.  

So, most important, what are we playing for??...
How about 30 Copic Sketch Markers, of your choice?
Fun, huh?!!  

Here are the rules. 
Be careful to pay close attention:).

Please only enter if you are a follower of this blog, thank you!

1.  Start a new Pinterest Board and title it: SC Contest ~ME~...This board should be a reflection of *you*...what you love, your favorites!!

2.  On the picture below these rules, you will find 12 prompts.  You should have at *least* one pin on your board for each prompt.

3.  At least one of the 12 pins should come from my blog (you're already here:) or my challenge blog (you can pin a card or project for the 'SC Character' prompt:).  

4.  The SC Contest picture (below) MUST be pinned to your board as well.  

5.  To enter your board for prize consideration, please COPY and PASTE its URL to the comments of THIS PHOTO. This is how I will see each board.  MAKE SURE YOUR URL WORKS.  I cannot retrieve boards I cannot see.  

6.  Now that you've completed steps 1-5, share your board!  Post a link on Facebook...or on your blog.  Encourage people to go look at it-- Because the person whose BOARD has the most total REPINS throughout their photos will win the Copic Markers.  You can see re-pins on the board below circled in red.  These will be what is tallied for each person who enters:). 

It is your job to promote your board!  Be creative and watch the re-pins pile up:).


**If there is a tie for first place between two or more boards (same amount of total "re-pins"), those boards will be put in a random drawing.  One person's entry will be randomly chosen to win the prize.  


If you are not a Pinterest member yet and want in on the fun, you will need to ask for an invitation from the Pinterest site.  This could take a couple days to receive...So, the faster way, would be to email me and ask for an invitation:).  I will be sure to add you!  My email is krista7smith@yahoo.com.  PLEASE use the subject line PINTEREST INVITE for the email.

The contest runs until Sunday, February 17 at 4pm EST.  That is when the tallies are made and the winner will be determined.  Re-pins may continue after that time, but they will not count toward the contest.  Winner will be announced on Monday, February 18!

Okay lovelies! Get pinning:).  Share your boards!!!!! That is the most important part for you!  And I look forward to looking through your boards and being inspired by all the different photos for each prompt!

Good luck:).
Here is an example board, too...just in case you wanna see:).

*This contest is not endorsed or supported by the Copic Marker Company. 
It is a giveaway gift to one lucky reader from myself.  


Favorite 5.


After a cold, wintery week of all being sick and yucky, I am READY for summer!
Here is my top five with a summer twist:).

1. Candy stripe cropped jeans.  UBER DUBER CA-UTE.  
2. Looking forward to beach days and sandcastles!  Probably won't get this sophisticated with our castle building:), but we can dream!
3. Sweetest beach cover up.
4. Perfect dress for a boardwalk date.
5. Summer baseball cap.  Totally Rad.

Hoping everyone is feeling good and staying cozy and warm!
Have a lovely weekend, friends!


2012 Photos in a Journal

I thought a short and sweet video would be a better use of space to show my half-way-completed Recollections Journal (instead of posting a bunch of photos in a row).  It is filled with pictures from 2012...and maybe a couple sneakers from 2011.

I love these cute journals, especially because you can take the pages out while you work on them...which is nice if the pages underneath are bumpy and your trying to write nicely:).  

Hope you enjoy...
Have a lovely end to your week, friends!


Tailor and Stylist

dress, c/o Tailor & Stylist. vest, TopShop. tights, Target. Boots, c/o Blowfish.

Some days are just meant for...

Comic books and snuggles. 
5 mile runs.
Going out for chicken wings and burgers because the dishes are already piled in the sink. 
And who wants to do dishes, anyways?
Watching food shows at night that make you hungry all over again.
A late night run to the refrigerator.
Also, a need to do another 5 miles after that kitchen visit.
Kiddos wrestling on the living room floor.  
Realizing Niamh could wrestle half the boys on Philly's wrestling team and win.
That chick is no joke. 
Playing Jeopardy at dinner.
Niamh carrying on a real conversation about The Miami Heat with Philly tonight. 
That's not even our team...and they are throwing around player names. 
Pretty cool for a nine year old girl:).  
Coffee at 1130 pm.
And a pretty sweater dress that is from Tailor and Stylist...

You can check out their FacebookPinterest, and Shop with the discount code saturatedcanary10 for 10% off your order. (PS...They ship international;)... And their prices are AUHMAZING!

Hoping each of you had a lovely Tuesday too...
Full of fun...
and free-and-clear of any dishes:).




Niamh is a 'go big or go home' kind of person.
She likes life vibrant and exciting and fun.
She is all girl.  She is passionate.  
She will need a romantic guy someday.
Someone who will shower her with roses and jewelry.  
She is sweet. And loves deeply.  
And she has a heart that seeks Jesus.  

She is pretty wonderful, basically:).

We've been talking a lot lately about joy
Because as sweet and lovely as she is, she got this awesome gene from her mom, 
where she wakes up 
Like, the kind that would make Grumpy Dwarf look like an easy going, lovable kinda guy.  

It has been as much a lesson for her as myself. 
Because as a mom, it isn't fair that I say 'do this' but actually live differently myself.  
So, Grumpy and Grumpy, Jr. are getting their lessons in joy lately:).

I still dress both kids in the mornings. That might seem weird to some people. 
But they are serious zombies until 8am... so they try their best to stay asleep while I try my best to pull and nudge and squeeze them into their uniforms.  Philly is pretty good at snoozing through the whole thing.  Niamh, not so much.

She wakes up one eye.  
And maybe complains about her skirt.  
Because that skirt is tight.
Or the sweater.
It has big armpits. (Yes, she has complained about armpit size before.)
And oh my goodness--
The worst thing in the world is a turtleneck.  
Turtlenecks can completely nuke our whole morning.  

My grumpiness tends to be the quiet, leave me alone for a while type. 
Niamh's is all up-in-the-koolaid-don't-even-know-the-flava type. 
So, we have basically covered the gamut of grumpy.

I love good mornings.  
And believe me, we usually start our days off well.
The kids will laugh and fool around.
And I'll pack everything into their book bags.
Get breakfast out. 
And sometimes stick something goofy in their lunch boxes. 

But those days when the turtleneck bomb has gone off...they really bother me. 
There are not many things in life I like less than a bad start to my day.
Because I like the feeling of walking out of school, having hugged and kissed them, knowing that our short time together that morning was good. That they will feel happy and joyful going into their day.  That is important to me as a mom. 

So, if a morning started to go down hill, I started trying to fix it.
I'd try the 'rise above it' phrase.  
Try to coach her out of it. 
But she isn't coachable at 730am and I'm kinda like Bobby Knight at that point myself...so. That failed.

I tried to ignore it.
But that doesn't solve anything.
It is like putting the dirty dishes in the oven right before someone visits. 
Which I would know nothing about, of course.

I tried guilting her out of it.
Telling her stories of others who are less fortunate but grateful for their turtlenecks.  
But I don't think guilt is a reliable tool.  It forces good behavior from a bad place.  

Recently, after a little string of these glorious mornings in a row, I was thinking 
how in the world can I fix this for her.  and me.
How do you get the grumpy to go away? 
The answer I heard in my heart (Jesus is good like that) was JOY.
Finding that refreshing feeling in my soul that will not give place to negative, grumpy tendencies.

Passing that nugget of info onto Niamh requires two things.

One, that I keep my own heart joyful. 
(Which some mornings is only by the grace of God:) 
It is taking a second to look at Philly curled up in the covers before I wake him.
Looking at Niamh's long eyelashes and messy bed hair that still somehow looks gorgeous.
Seeing their little drooly pillows. 
And their breathing shoulders move up and down.
Be joyful that those two goofballs are mine.
Be joyful we have another day to spend together. 
Be joyful that God trusted me to love them deeply...all of them, even the grumpy parts:).

The other part of teaching joy is finding it in the little parts of the day.
I think real joy starts in the little things.
Talking about sunshine on the way to school.
Praying together in the truck before we walk in.
Saying something funny about dad.
Giggling at a fart in the backseat 
(because they never, ever happen in the front seat, cross my heart.)
Yeah.  Farts can be joyous. I'm not even joking.

Joy doesn't need an occasion or a reason. 
It is just flowing from the heart.
It just happens.
And it is really good at pushing the grumpy away.

And the very best part-- it is contagious:).


Grumpiness is easy.
And it ruins good mornings. 
And it resides in little corners of the day-- like in a turtleneck or an itchy pair of tights.

Joy is free-flowing and beautiful. 
It fills up the whole heart, so there is no room for Grumpy to come in anyways.
It is also in the little parts of the day...
But it is exponentially more wonderful to a heart than indulging for a second in grumpiness.  
And how wonderful.humbling.gracious for God to give us children that are just like us in so many ways.  My Father reaches my heart as I teach my children.  That is some good stuff right there. 

What are the little parts of your day that give you joy?
I'd love to share in your thoughts... 
because, after all, it is a pretty contagious thing, that JOY!

[Linking here today.
Because she makes me reflect on Mondays
about being a mom.
And that is cool of her:).]


Favorite 5.


1. Phil rolled his eyes when I pulled these shoes out of the box this week.  I am never to wear them when accompanied by him:)...but I could not resist the combo of leopard print, shimmery gold glitter, and pink laces.  Someday, when I get invited to some totally awesome disco party, I will have the perfect pair of shoes

2. I am totally loving the kid's family Valentine cards made at Tiny Prints.  It is like the easiest, fastest, cutest way to make photo cards and gifts.  I can even put their cute little faces on my coffee mugs:).  Awesome.

3. Ombre Hair.  I had my hair on top darkened and tried to do the dark-fading-into-light-ends sort of thing...I think I still need to go darker on top to really get cool ombre hair...but I'm getting there:).  Oh, and that is not my hair.  Wish it was, though:). 

4.  My Mind's Eye.  I am a stalker of every new release.  I even buy doubles sometimes.  

5.  Pretty bedding.  Anthropologie has just the prettiest bedding in the world. Unfortunately, I can't afford any of it:). But it is still kinda dreamy to take a peek at once in a while:).  

What are your favorites of the week??...
Hope you have a lovely, restful weekend friends!!


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