Big Plans!

Friday, August 31, 2012

Hi friends -- and Happy Friday! Better yet, a long weekend Friday! Woot! It's only the first week of school, and I'm already in need of a break. I'd better hit a groove soon, or it's going to be a long year. Babygirl asked me yesterday how long until the next Summer break. We both almost cried to think it's nine months away!

And what is it with long weekends that make projects come to mind? It's like we have to use the extra day to get stuff done. I hope to have a lot of lounging...but of course some projects, too! Remember our Ikea Field Trip? Several things came home with us, including this ready-to-assemble monster. Yes, it takes up the entire junk bedroom.

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Any ideas what it is? Here's a clue. Or maybe the floorplan from this post will jog your memory?


new floorplan den

Since it's from Ikea, assembling it could monopolize our entire extra day. Hope Mr. Sugarplum is up for the task, because this girl has about 5-minutes of patience.

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I'm so excited to see it in place, and fingers-crossed it looks good! Either way, I'll show you next week! What have you got planned for the weekend? How do you and Ikea instructions get along? Whatever you do, I hope it's fun, safe and Isaac-free! Happy weekend, lovebugs!

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{About an Hour} Your Projects

Thursday, August 30, 2012

I was so excited about our 'About an Hour' link party, but also a little nervous no one would play along. Wow, did you prove me wrong! Clearly we all love a quickie. Project. A quickie project. Preferably one that can be completed while viewing highly intelligent TV shows. It was so inspiring to check out all 128 projects, but I had the hardest time choosing my favorites. Here's just a small sampling of the creative genius you guys brought....


Cheap to Glam Frames at Our Lake Life





Adding Greek Key to a Lamp at Honey We're Home





Ballard-inspired Chandelier Magnets from New House to Home




Polka Dot Tray from This is Happiness




Rope Vases at A Thoughtful Place




Washi Tape Coasters at Organize & Decorate Everything




Penny Vase from Krevyv




Kids Abstract Art from My Third True Love




Hand-Painted Tea Towel from Pearls Poppies Pinkies Up



I can't wait to get started on some of these ideas! So what do you think...should we do it again next month? The link party, that is.


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{Smitten} West Elm Basket Planter

Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Big purchases like this one and this one are exciting, and nauseating all at the same time. There is a lot of pressure when an item carries a big price tag. However, sometimes small purchases can make us just as happy. A recent stop at West Elm had me swooning over this basket (on sale, but I can't find it online!). I finally found the perfect planter for our Money Tree.


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I love that it's not a traditional planter, and the warmth it adds to the room.

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This tree is growing like crazy, with nothing but good light and a weekly watering. Here it is just three months ago. Wish I could say the same about my beloved Fig Friend, who currently has fewer than 10 leaves left.

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What little splurges are you smitten with lately?

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Blogging Friendships

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

I can't thank you guys enough for all the kind comments on Mr. Sugarplum's story yesterday. I loved reading about the people who've impacted your life, and really appreciate you sharing. And the fact that each comment earns $1 donation to the Alzheimer's Association from BlogHer and Capella, is just the cherry on top!

It's been a busy few days with the kids going back to school, but I have started going through all our beach pictures. The ones that immediately stood out were from our time spent with my sweet friend, Megan, of Honey We're Home. I adore this girl, and it's funny to think that this special friendship came about because of our mutual love of blogging!

Megan & Cass

We live about five hours apart, so I always jump at opportunities to see her. This time was a real treat because we got to meet each others kids. Her son, James, is an absolute doll, and all of us were instantly smitten by him. I swear he has a French accent! And it's hard to tell in pictures, but Megan is the tiniest little china doll...seriously, I wanted to tuck her in my pocket.

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We stopped by her house on our way to the beach (I loved seeing her gorgeous home in person, it's even better than the pics, if you can believe it!), then she and sweet James joined us for a day later in the week.

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The kids loved playing together, and Babygirl became surprisingly maternal with James. (Leaving Megan and me to chat it up!)

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My kids adored Megan and James, and spent the rest of the week talking about them. When Mr. Sugarplum joined us mid-week, he was treated to an earful of all the cute things James says and does.

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I say this all the time, but blogging has been such a blessing....all the creativity and support...and especially the great friendships that have bloomed from it. I can't encourage you enough to step outside your comfort zone and breach the 'virtual friendship' line. You never know if a new life-long friend will be discovered.

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Have you made friends online? Have you been brave enough to meet any of them in person?

***And to my other fun Houston blogger friends...I wish we could have all gotten together! Next time, for sure!***

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Making a Difference

Monday, August 27, 2012


I'm still digging out of sandy laundry, and crazed because my kids went back to school today. But I wanted to share a little of our personal life for a cause that's dear to my heart. 


Mr. Sugarplum isn't a total stranger around these parts...and his appearance is usually good for a few laughs.
 
My Edward
My "Handyman"
There's no question he's funny, and an entertainer to the core. I've mentioned it before, but Mr. Sugarplum was a professional musician "back in the day." He toured with major artists for years before getting his own record deal. Finally, his dreams were coming true...he recorded a pop-rock record with all of his own songs, had a radio single on the Billboard Top 50, and was touring college campuses with his spankin' band. ('Spankin' is his word; I'm not cool enough to talk like that.)



He was at the cusp. Musical success was at his fingertips. Then his dreams were cut short with a one-minute phone call...the record label had folded. A week later, we came home to find our porch stacked with 30 boxes of his CDs, posters and promotional materials. To say he was devastated would be an understatement.


But Mr. Sugarplum is a glass half-full kind of guy {heart}, and quickly discovered his favorite part of entertaining was connecting with people and impacting their life in some positive way. He also realized being home with his family was more important than all of it. So he went back to school for a Master's degree in Counseling, and is now a fully-licensed professional psychotherapist!
My Baby Daddy
He specializes in drug and alcohol addiction, and has flourished on his new path. He has such a way with people, and easily gains their trust. He helps them learn coping and life skills, and motivates them to change their thinking and behavior. The best part of the job is witnessing patients turn their lives around, earn their family's trust, and ultimately gain their own dignity back.

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Mr. Sugarplum is light-hearted and funny, except when talking about his work. He feels so passionately about helping people, and I see his pride when he tells me about his day.
"When I'm running a group session, the entertainer in me comes out and I'm actually trying to sell them a new life. When a connection is made, and I see their faces light up with understanding, I can literally see the hope move back in."
So why am I sharing all this about my man? Because Capella University (not my husband's school) and BlogHer, feel so passionately about work that makes a difference, that they're donating $1 for every comment left on this post, to the charity of my choice! Capella University is a rigorous and supportive learning community that transforms your education into work that makes a difference in the lives of others. At Capella, you will develop the knowledge to help others reach their potential. Your degree will change more lives than just your own. Read examples of the great work their alumni have been doing here, or see what their community has to say on the Capella Facebook Page.
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To help raise money for The Alzheimer's Association, leave me a comment about someone who's made a difference in your life, or influenced you in some positive way. Maybe a counselor, a teacher or a nurse? Or tell us how what you do makes a difference to others! BlogHer will donate $1 for every comment, up to $500!
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Donation Rules:
No duplicate comments. You may receive (2) total donation entries by leaving up to two comments in response to the prompt on this post. This promotion is open to US Residents age 18 or older. The Official Rules are available here. This promotion runs from 8/27/2012 - 9/30/2012. Visit the BlogHer.com Capella page to check out more blogger stories and for more donation chances!


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{New Sponsor & Giveaway} Home Zada

Saturday, August 25, 2012

***This Giveaway is now closed. Winner and discount code listed below.***

Most of us are passionate about our homes, and spend a great deal of time designing and creating a space we love. But how many of us have an updated inventory of our belongings? And is it actually kept in a safe place, in case disaster strikes? We switch out our decor for the seasons, but do we remember those maintenance tasks that keep the home safe, healthy and running smoothly?

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I recently discovered an online solution called Home Zada, that organizes all the important information about your home in one secure place, and am thrilled to have them as a sponsor. 

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 {Maintain Your Home}

You can browse Home Zada's library of maintenance best practices, and create a personalized property calendar that will automatically remind you to change the air filters, flush the hot water heater, replace batteries on the smoke detector, etc.  

home maintenance to dos


{Document Your Possessions}

You can also upload photos, receipts, and owner’s manuals of your inventory in to your secure Home Zada account, to document your possessions, ensuring you are probably insured and prepared if something bad were to happen.

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{Manage Your Projects}

For those of us with home projects continually running through our heads, you can create all your desired decorating and renovation projects directly in Home Zada. For the numbers-cruncher in the family, you'll enjoy the budget, cost and cash flow tracking aspects.

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You can even use the online bookmarking applet to shop any e-commerce site for products, automatically saving the link and photos as part of your shopping research. 

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{Giveaway!!}

HomeZada is giving one lucky-duck Hi Sugarplum reader a  
Free Premium Membership for One Year
Simply leave a comment in this post, telling us what you'd utilize most from this amazing home organization website! 
Tweet it, Facebook it, etc for extra entries.

Random winner chosen September 10. Good luck!

UPDATE: The winner of this giveaway is Mel from Head in the Game, Heart in the Sand!  

Everyone can also use the code SUGARPLUM for half-off the price of a premium membership until September 15, 2012.

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Holding On Just a Little Longer

Friday, August 24, 2012

Hi friends! I hope your week has been grand. I've eaten every fish taco on the island, I'm pretty sure my hair has dreadlocks, and my freckle count has doubled...but it's been the best week of laughs and family-time. I've got just a few precious days left with these guys...then it's back home, and back to school on Monday!


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Happy weekend, lovebugs! Hope you're soaking up the final days of Summer with your favorite people!


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{Marry, Make-Out, Muzzle} Michaela Noelle Designs

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Hi friends! All my crevices are full of sand, my belly full of fish, and my mind full of smut trashy beach reads....basically a successful beach trip so far! Megan and her adorable son even joined us yesterday! We're soaking up the last few days of Summer freedom before reality school starts next week, so I'm thrilled to have the loveliest girl in Blog Land sitting in for me today. Michaela is just about the sweetest thing, even if she does evoke massive hair envy.


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Hello Sugarplum readers! I'm Michaela and I blog about all things design over at Michaela Noelle Designs. I'm so excited to be here dishin' on boys- more specifically, which boy I would Marry, Make out with, and Muzzle. Here we go!

1. MARRY
Zac Efron. I feel like I grew up with this man...I watched his debut on High School Musical. And trust me when I say, my friends and I were his biggest fans {couldn't watch it without squealing}.  Now he's in The Lucky One, and it's safe to say the only reason I'm seeing it is because he's in it. He is beautiful. And if he's anything like his character in HSM, I'm sure he'll make a great husband! ha.
He's also in my dating age range, so bam. Dibs on Zac...yep, first name basis ;)

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2. MAKE OUT
Channing Tatum.  There's no denying this man is great eye candy. Just not sure he's marriage material. So we'll stick him in this category instead :)

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3. MUZZLE
Chris. Anyone watching Bachelor Pad?! {I'm ashamed to admit I am!} Any guy who hooks up with multiple girls in a matter of a few days or weeks and actually enjoys watching the girls get upset about is a capital "L" Loser. Not cool....ever! And in my opinion, I don't find him very handsome, so I'm not sure why these girls are falling for him! Anyone with me?

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So there's my list! Thanks for letting me rant, Cass :) Stop by and say hello anytime, friends!
xo
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Thanks, Michaela! I'm totally with you on Zac...even though I think that makes me a cougar! Who's with me?!


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{Marry, Make-Out, Muzzle} Honey We're Home

Monday, August 20, 2012

Hey, hey, hey! I hope everyone had a fabulous weekend! I spent a good part of mine devouring all the 'In About an Hour' projects linked up last week! This is some seriously great inspiration for easy weekend projects, and with football season upon us, I think we might need to do it again. The party is still open, and I'll be posting my favorites next week.

I hinted we were heading to the beach soon, and today I'm toes-in-the-sand! I don't know about you guys, but I love this {Marry, Make-Out, Muzzle} Series....eye candy of the best kind! And today, I'm thrilled to welcome one of my favorites to the series.

Honey We're Home needs no introduction. After stalking every last post on her blog, Megan finally succumbed to being my friend. And now she's practically my blog wife, since I constantly bounce blog (and life) ideas off her. There's no one sweeter, and no prettier closet or kitchen, than hers! Not only is she hanging on the blog today, but we're hanging 'in real life' this week, too!


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Gotta love Cassie for coming up with such a fun guest post idea.  I thought it would be fun to choose my Marry, Make Out, and Muzzle from my all time favorite TV series- Sex and the City. So, without further ado. . . .


Marry- Mr. Big (John James Preston) 

I was Team Big all the way, from the very beginning.  You can't fight true love.  Even though Aiden was adorable and fixed her floors and looked pretty hot in Dubai.  



Make Out- Lewis Leroy

Remember him?!  He was the sailor who visited New York during Fleet Week and took Carrie's hand and danced with her.  Even his voice was sexy.



Muzzle- (Bill Kelley- Politician)

Remember why he dumped Carrie  . . .  ewww!


So fun Cassie- love ya!  

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Thanks, Megan...love that shot of Big! And no, I don't remember why the politician dumped Carrie!!?? I think I'd have to add Smith (Samantha's boy-toy) to the list. What about you guys? Who was your favorite male character from Sex and the City?

Pssst....check out other blogger's {Marry, Make-Out, Muzzle} picks!


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