April 29, 2011

Code word. . .

April 29, 2011
The Royal Wedding, the Shuttle Launch (which is now delayed. boo! ), NFL Picks, and all the other big news stories are flooding the airwaves today!
What a fabulous day for a special sale! While you are surfing the net and reading up on the latest gossip about Prince William, take a minute to drop by Cantaloupe Corner and use your special 25% discount code.

Use code FRUITY25 to get 25% off you purchase today and tomorrow!

Get your child a high quality, ink-free tee for 25% off!! That's sounds like good news to me!

This is the best deal of the year on our premium quality shirts! In fact, it's the best deal we have ever had!


The 25% off coupon is good for today and tomorrow only, April 29th and 30th. Tomorrow will be the last day to shop for the spring/summer season so if you need a shirt for a birthday party, baby shower, or just for running around in the summer sun, get your orders in now!
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April 28, 2011

Thursday - MORE Deals of the Day!!!

April 28, 2011
I didn't get to post yesterday's sales on our blog so lucky for you I'm leaving them on sale today! I also added a few more to the list of deals! Like all sales, these won't last long. In fact, today is the last day to pick these up for such amazing prices!

Today's Deals of the Day are:










It's Thursday already. Time is flying by. We are only accepting orders through Saturday so get over to our Cantaloupe Corner Etsy shop and do some shopping! 
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April 26, 2011

Tuesday - Deals of the Day!

April 26, 2011
Today's deals are up in our Etsy Shop! Today we have 3 more of my favorite things on sale. The sale is for today only so snatch these up while you can!

Also, FYI, we are completely sold out of orange t-shirt in size 2. If you have a little tyke that wears that size we still have 5 other fun colors to choose from. Thanks!

Now, without further ado. . .

Today's sales are:




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April 25, 2011

6 Days!

April 25, 2011
Time is flying by!
We only have 6 more days left to take orders! 6 Days!

I am so syked about this week!
 I will have daily deals instead of weekly deals and I will also be sneaking in Cantaloupe Corner sales codes into this blog and facebook so keep watching so you don't miss a thing!

What are today's deals?









Our t-shirts, and girls shirts are selling out FAST! So get over to Cantaloupe Corner and pick up one for your baby, toddler, or preschooler, before they are gone!
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April 22, 2011

MARCO. . .

April 22, 2011
. . .POLO!

My li'l bro asked me to make him some shirts and he brought me a challenge I hadn't tried yet: Polo shirts!

I didn't want them to look like bowling shirts, which is easy to do when you are printing on polo shirts. Me and my hubby brainstormed and this is what we came up with:


Just to give you some background on why we chose these designs: My brother is taking heavy equipment courses through NAVIT right now in school and he gets to drive big trucks and tractors. He absolutely loves it! He wanted me to incorporate tractors into one of the shirts.


The red shirt was inspired by his nick-name "Crash". He has had some bad luck in the last few years and has had broken bones, been hit by a car (ouch!) and he was in a car accident too.
He has a great sense of humor about his luck and sometimes calls himself the "crash-test-dummy." lol.


I wrapped the side designs around the side of the shirt for a unique look.  



I just sent these to him and I'm happy to report that he "loooooooves" his new polos!

Now I want to make some for my boys too!
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April 21, 2011

Inked Tote Winner!!!

April 21, 2011
Thanks to everyone who entered our Inked Tote Giveaway!
Our lucky ducky winner is:

Holly!

Congratulations!!
We will contact you via email, please reply by Sunday April 24th.

Thank you so much! I love giving aways free stuff! I need to to it more often. Thanks again everyone!
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April 19, 2011

Beware! The Dangers of Artificial Food Dyes

April 19, 2011
Brightly colored candies, drinks, baked goods, cereals and much more adorn all of our local store shelves. They call out to us, "Eat me! I'm bright, sweet, and flavorful!"


Are children are growing up believing that cheese is naturally bright orange, strawberries are ruby red, and raspberries are. . . blue?

But what is really in those colorful treats? 

Most often these colors are the result of artificial food dyes. And you will be surprised how often they are used in everyday foods and drinks. Take a minute or two to look through your pantry or cupboards and see how often Reds, Yellows and Blues are added to your favorite foods.
Are you shocked?
I was!



The Washington Post's article titled "The rainbow of food dyes in our grocery aisles has a dark side" (March 25 2011), stated:
      " Artificial dyes aren’t just making your Yoplait Light Red Raspberry yogurt blush and your Kraft    Macaroni and Cheese glow in the dark. They are causing behavioral problems and disrupting children’s attention, according to a growing number of scientific studies."

"Beyond the behavioral problems and cancer risks, the greatest hazard that dyes pose for children may also be the most obvious: They draw kids away from nutritious foods and toward brightly colored processed products that are high in calories but low in nutrients, such as fruit-flavored drinks and snack foods. Those types of foods are a major force in America's obesity epidemic."

Here is a list of conditions that have possible links to food dyes:
1. Cancer, including brain tumors
2. Allergies, asthma, and sensitivities
3. Behavioral issues, hyperactivity, and ADHD
4. Decreased cognitive function, lowered IQ

Behavior problems? Cancer? Lower IQ?  From food dyes!?  REALLY!?

Really!


 
The British government has recently funded 2 major studies that have concluded that food dyes cause behavior problems, even in children who had previously showed no behaviour issues.

Since these studies, Health officials in the UK have urged manufacturers to discontinue use of the 6 commonly used food dyes, including Red 40, Yellow 5 and Yellow 6 (some of the dyes used in the studies.)


Here are some examples of what these food dyes are known to do:
-"Red # 40, which is the most widely used dye, may accelerate the appearance of immune-system tumors in mice, while also triggering hyperactivity in children.

-Blue # 2, used in candies, beverages, pet foods and more, was linked to brain tumors.

-And Yellow 5, used in baked goods, candies, cereal and more, may not only be contaminated with several cancer-causing chemicals, but it's also linked to hyperactivity, hypersensitivity and other behavioral effects in children." (Dr. Mercola "The Dark Side of the Rainbow of Food Dyes Being Used to Color Your Food ")

This is scary news, considering the fact that these food dyes are so widely used in everyday products.

Unfortunately, the United States' FDA has chosen not to choose sides on this issue yet.
Their stance on the matter is:
"FDA concludes that a causal relationship between exposure to color additives and hyperactivity in children in the general population has not been established."

It would be a huge ordeal if they come out to warn the population about the dangers of these food dyes. (My guess is that they are biding their time to avoid angry food manufacturers who would be forced to change their recipes. And more importantly,to avoid ANGRY PARENTS!)

Since the studies were conducted in the United Kingdom, many manufacturers who use artificial colors now put a warning label on their packages that says:  "may have an adverse effect on activity and attention in children." And many manufacturers have changed their recipes and discontinued the use of artificial dyes all together.

But what is food without color? Bland, and boring?
Removing artificial dyes from our food isn't the end of color! There are many natural dyes that are safe and effective. For instance, USA made Strawberry Nutri-gran bars contain Red #40, while the ones made in the UK use natural colors, such as beetroot red, anatto, and paprika extract.
In fact, most branches of Wal-Mart, Coca-Cola, and Mars in the UK have eliminated all artificial colors, the preservative sodium benzoate, and aspartame from their products!
(This almost makes me want to move there!)


Since most of us aren't living in the UK, how do we avoid these dangerous additives?
The best advice is to try and avoid processed foods. They are the main contributor to artificial colors and preservatives in our diets. And on top of this, they are low in vitamins and minerals too. Choose fresh or even frozen foods whenever you can and ALWAYS check the labels!
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April 16, 2011

Finding your inspiration

April 16, 2011
Like writer's block, sometimes your creativity can go into a slump. Sometimes the creative juices refuse to flow.
What do you do when this happens?

Here's what I do.

I remember back to that first day that I said to myself "You are pretty good at this. You should start a business!"
I think about how I felt, and how I knew I couldn't fail. I had so many ideas that I had written down and so many more waiting to burst out of my brain.
Where did I put that notebook anyway?  Ah, there it is.
Then I look through the pages and remember how much fun it was coming up with ideas and building my projects. Not work, just fun.

Now I remember why I started doing this. It's fun!!

Take a step back and look at the big picture. Money is nice but freedom is countless times better! I love how creating makes me feel free. I love when someone really enjoys and appreciates my designs!



Now that I'm feeling better about myself it is easier to move on to the next part of the creative process: Inspiration!

What inspires you?

I have 2 little boys (soon to be 3!) and they are the most inspiring part of my life. It really shows in my work because, as you can tell, Cantaloupe Corner is chalk full of little boy's designs. Trains, crayons, robots, guitars. . .
So many of my designs are inspired by the things that my boys love or sometimes it is what I see when I look at them. Add that to my more-than-slightly cheesy sense of humor and you get clever sayings and fun designs.
I am also inspired by nature, anything vintage, music, and random everyday stuff.

Think about the things that make you really happy, or really curious, or things that create other strong emotions.
Inspiration comes when you allow those feelings to rise to the surface and you give them direction.


Go for a walk. Take a small note pad with you. Use your senses to touch, see, hear, and smell the world around you. Write down the things that make you feel alive inside.
This is a way to dig deep into yourself and find out who you really are.
Keep this notebook with you in your purse or bag. Look back on your inspirations often and add to them everyday.

-Last night the color of the sunset was so beautiful! I think I want to make something in that esquisite color.
-My kids were acting like they were robots today and their favorite robot line is simply "I am a Robot". I wonder if a 2 year old can do the Robot dance.
- I need to find a good cause to donate some of my time and money too. Who is it and what can I do to help?


The best art comes from that place deep inside your heart. If you are passionate about what you do, people will feel that passion. They can sense it. Don't create what you think the world wants from you. Create what you really are. Each item you create, whether it's t-shirts, sculptures, jewelry, or baby bibs,  should have a little bit of you in it.


When you feel in a slump, look back on all of this inspiration. Often you have great ideas or inspired words that you have written down but haven't done anything with. Get started!


Need a kick in the pants to get you going?
Once you have an inspired creative idea you have roughly 90 seconds to WRITE IT DOWN! If you let this 90 seconds go by and don't take any initiative on your idea it will soon be gone, never to return again. You never know when your million dollar idea will come.

Some of my best t-shirt ideas came to me at 5:00 a.m. I keep a notebook at my bedside so I can write down my favorite ideas as soon as they come.

So even if you are still feeling like you are in a creative pigeon hole, don't fret! Sometimes your brain just needs a break. Soon you will be writing down new, fresh ideas.

But my best advice is to just keep at it. Often a slump can lead to good things! It helps you to look back and see what you have done and look forward to what you will be. Sometimes it leads you in a new direction. Follow your heart and your inspiration and they will never lead you wrong.




P.S. Don't forget to join our Inked Tote Giveaway!
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April 15, 2011

{ Etsy-versary } Inked Tote Giveaway!

April 15, 2011
We are celebrating!
Why?
Because we just had our 2nd Cantaloupe Corner Etsy Anniversary!

I couldn't be happier with the success of our little shop! I'm a stay-at-home mom waiting for baby #3 and I get to be a business owner too! And not only do I have a business but it is growing! I am so deeply grateful that I have been so immensely blessed over the past 2 years.

I am grateful for the changes that have brought us this far. I hesitantly switched to a new t-shirt brand almost a year ago. The prices were higher but the quality of these shirts was 100 times better than the previous brand.  As a customer, I want to receive the best for my money, and that is what I want to offer to all of my customers. We offer the absolute highest quality toddler t-shirts available. And on top of that, they will always look great because there is no ink to fade, crack, or stick.

The best part is letting my own little boys help me with designs and model t-shirts for me. They love being involved in the business process. My 4-year-old even sets up his own "business" from time to time, selling things like rocks, pictures, and holiday decorations (I'm his best customer).
I can't think of a better way to teach them about earning money than to let them see how hard I work on my own business.


Giveaway time!

Ok, enough of the boring stuff. I want to invite all of you to celebrate our 2 year anniversary with us!

I haven't done a giveaway in a loooong time and it is high time I thank my customers/blog readers/fans by giving some free stuff to y'all!

How about a cute, springy, versatile, one-of-a-kind INKED TOTE!!!
(I am in love with these totes right now. I take them with me everywhere!)

Want it?

This tote is our Birds and Trees design on navy.  I have embellished it with pretty white lace. So simple and so pretty.


HOW TO ENTER:

1. Click on over to Cantaloupe Corner and leave a comment with your favorite item.
2. Follow our blog.
3. "Like" Cantaloupe Corner on Facebook.
4. Tell your friends! Post this giveaway on Facebook, Twitter, or your own Blog.


Thank you to everyone who has helped us along this 2 year adventure! I'm having the time of my life!
We will have another giveaway next week too! Betcha can't wait to see what it is!


Giveaway will end on Wednesday April 20th @ 12 noon, Arizona time. Winner will be announced on Thursday April 21st.

THANKS!
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April 14, 2011

Spring Cleaning - Step #1

April 14, 2011
It's that time of year again.
Can you feel it in the air?

I've been feeling it for a while now. Not only have my maternal nesting instincts kicked in but it has felt like spring here for over a month. We have even enjoyed temperatures dangerously close to the triple digit mark. yikes! (Did I say enjoyed? I meant tolerated.)

I have busily been moving from room to room decluttering and cleaning. I still have a looooong way to go. As we all know, the house is never clean enough for an expecting mother. (BTW, only 6.5 weeks to go, and counting!! eee!)


Roll up your sleeves and apply some elbow grease because we are digging into some SPRING CLEANING!


Step #1: Declutter and Simplify

Declutter
I'm kind of a pack rat and decluttering can be emotionally traumatic for me. I don't like to do it, but I can't tell you how good I feel when it is done. Freedom!!!!

One room at a time, go through your drawers, cupboards, boxes, totes, bookcases, etc. and sort anything you aren't using into 2 piles: DONATE and THROW AWAY.



Keep in mind that the things you keep should be of value to you. If it doesn't mean anything to you and you aren't using it, get rid of it! Donate any nicer items that someone else would be able to use or enjoy.

REALLY think about it's value to you.
-Does it have sentimental value?
-Are you currently using it?
-Will you for sure be using it in the near future, or when it is in season?
-Does it add to the beauty and function of your life and home?

If it doesn't qualify for any of these, it is much better to get it out of your house.


Last week I took an SUV full of old clothes, books, toys, linens, blankets, decorations, etc. to Deseret Industries (D.I.). If you don't know about D.I., they are a thrift store set up by the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day-Saints. It works just like Goodwill.  They take donations and use the store as a way to offer job training and employment for those in need.
I choose to donate rather than to hold a garage sale because I love the feeling that my nicer items are really helping my community. And it saves me the work of sorting, pricing, and spending a day in the blazing sun.

-Take your "Donate" pile to the thrift store within a week of sorting to make sure it doesn't get forgotten or stuffed in the garage or spare room. (We've all done it.)

-Take care of your trash as quickly as possible also. If you don't have room in the garbage for bigger items, set up a pick up day with your local sanitation program, or find a friend with a truck and head to the landfill. Just get that stuff out of your house ASAP.


SIMPLIFY:
Don't let those "hot spots" get cluttered up again. If you find places in your home where things tend to pile up, come up with an organization solution.
-Do you need a wastebasket to catch incoming junk mail?
-A mail sorter?
-Somewhere to hang coats and backpack, or store shoes?
-Maybe a basket for keys, and other items that we drop as soon as we come through the door?
-A filing system for bills and important papers, or coupons?

Take care of these problems now before they return to the terrible, menacing piles that they were before.

Whatever the area is, think "simplify, simplify, simplify."




Once the clutter is gone, take a deep breath. You just tackled the hardest part of Spring Cleaning!

Spring cleaning isn't just about spotless floors and clean cupboards.When you simplify your home you are also simplifying your life. Clutter in your home = Clutter in your life. Declutter your home and you will feel more organized and less stressed.
When you feel at peace with your surroundings you will find more happiness and peace in your life also.

I'm going through the life/home decluttering process too. The more "stuff" I can let go of in my home the better I feel. It really is a weight off my shoulders.

My new favorite quote is "Simplicity is the greatest form of sophistication." (Thomas S. Monson)


Now that you are feeling lighter and more organized, we can start deep cleaning!
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April 12, 2011

News - Due Dates and Such

April 12, 2011
So. . .
We are expecting a baby!

I'm sure all of you knew that by now, but the due date is coming up, and fast!
Little baby Mason will be here in approximately 7 weeks! Can you believe it?!!
There is so much to be done and so little time remaining.

Me and my new recruit, a.k.a. my amazing husband, have been working hard to keep up with the business that has been coming in. I am way beyond thrilled with how busy Cantaloupe Corner has been! We are t-shirt printing maniacs!

I've been having way too much fun with all of this, but it is time to be a responsible mommy and start thinking about the new addition that is coming our way. He needs some cute clothes made and some projects finished for his room and. . . well, I have so many things I want to make for him.

We have finally decided on a maternity leave date. Our last day of business will be April 30th. After April 30th we will only be taking special requests so please get your orders in before then so you can get your birthday shirts, gifts, and summer tees in time.

I don't know yet how long we will have the shop closed, but my adorable hubby has volunteered to help me get the shop up and running as soon as possible after the baby is born. I'm not sure how crazy it will be around here with 3 kids (eeek!) I can't believe we are going to have 3 boys! This place is going to be a mad house.  Please pray that I can keep my sanity. 



We have some great new ideas and fabulous new designs we are working on to introduce when we come back. I've been holding on to some of my FAVORITE designs yet! You are not going to want to miss it!


In the mean time I will still be posting the latest and greatest from our adventures here on the blog. I have some more exciting nutritional tips and tutorials coming.


Only 18 days left! So get your orders in now!

If you have a birthday boy or girl that will need a t-shirt this summer, please get your order in so I can make them. Thanks!!






See more ink-free designs in our Cantaloupe Corner shop.
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April 11, 2011

Be afraid of your. . . deodorant?

April 11, 2011
Be afraid. . . . Be very afraid!


Your deodorant may make you less stinky, but do you really know what that stuff is that you are spreading onto your skin?

My husband has been telling me for sometime that he doesn't trust deodorants. He heard that some of the ingredients could be dangerous cancer causers. I didn't doubt him for a moment, but I was very curious what those evil ingredients could be. \


Here is the list of 7 ingredients they found to avoid when choosing a deodorant:
Aluminum chlorohydrate, aluminum zirconium tetrachlorohydrex gly or any aluminum compounds. Aluminum is absorbed through the skin and accumulates in the body. It has been suggested that there is an association between aluminum and Alzheimer’s disease.

Parabens (methyl, ethyl, propyl, benzyl and butyl), are all derived from toluene, a toxic petrochemical derivative. Toluene is toxic if swallowed or inhaled. It is also harmful in contact with the skin. There is some evidence that repeated exposure to toluene may cause reproductive harm. Since 2000, 13 research studies have shown that various types of parabens act like estrogen in animals and in tissue culture. Estrogen is known to drive the growth of cancerous cells.

Triclosan is a skin irritant and may cause contact dermatitis. It may kill healthy bacteria as well as harmful bacteria. It may contain carcinogenic contaminants. It is stored in body fat and is classified as a pesticide by the FDA.

Talc is classified as a carcinogen by the International Agency for Research on Cancer if it contains asbestiform fibers. The quantity of asbestiform fibers in cosmetic grade talc is unregulated. If talc is listed on the label, there is no way of knowing whether or not it contains asbestiform fibers.

Propylene glycol absorbs quickly through the skin and is a penetration enhancers. It may cause delayed allergic reactions. NIOSH says propylene glycol is a neurotoxin and may cause kidney or liver damage. The EPA says it’s not fully investigated for carcinogenic potential.

Silica is a skin irritant. It may be contaminated with crystalline quartz, which is a carcinogen.

Steareth-n (n may be any number like say 100), may be vegetable derived but is reacted with ethylene oxide (ethoxylated), a known human carcinogen.



Did you notice how many times the word "carcinogen" was mentioned? Carcinogens are cancer causers. They should be avoided like the plague.
 
 
 
If you can't just go pick up your favorite stick of Secret, or Degree, what do you do?
 
 
There are deodorants available with natural ingredients like vegetable glycerin bases, with natural preservatives. These are a much better alternative. They may not smell like "glistening waterfall" but if they keep you from spreading carcinogens onto your body, it's totally worth it.
 
The Wellness Wisdom Hiway listed some recipes for homemade deodorants!
 
The simplest recipe was simply to use Apple Cider Vinegar! It balances the ph of your underarms which will prevent the odor causing bacteria from growing in the first place. Check out the other homemade deodorant recipes HERE
 
You don't have to be smelly to be healthy!
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April 9, 2011

Happiness is : a positive thought

April 9, 2011
How are you feeling right this moment?

Tired?
Joyful?
Lonely?
Excited?
Overwhelmed?
Confused?
Bored?
Happy?
Stressed?
Hopeful?

We have so many things going on in our lives. And there are so many emotions we are going through, sometimes all at the same time.  It is exhausting!

Now take those emotions you are feeling and focus in on only the positive ones. Focus on the JOY, HAPPINESS, EXCITED, LOVING and PEACEFUL feelings. They may not be the strongest emotion you are feeling right now but empty the others out of your head, even if just for a minute. Find a smidgen of happiness amidst the chaos of life. And make that feeling grow until it fills you up.

Think of someone you love, something you love to do, or a place that makes you feel happy.
Your children, your spouse or significant other, your favorite sport, hobby, or project, or maybe a tropical island, or your home town.
Really feel the good emotions in your heart.


Now how are you feeling?

Positive thought are extraordinarily powerful. Just one or two positive thoughts can help you let go of the negative emotions and replace them with real, happy emotions.



 One of my favorite quotes is "There is no reality, only perception." This means that your world exists through your eyes. The way you see your world is what is real to you. So why not add some more happiness to your world by letting go of negative thoughts and holding on to positive thoughts. The only thing in life that you can completely control is your thoughts. Take advantage of that and make those thoughts the best they can be.


When you wake up in the morning, what is the first thing you think of?
The first thing I usually think is,
 "It is waaaay to early for me to be up!"
 "I have soooo much to do today. I don't think I can get it all done."
 "Why does my husband get to sleep in when I'm pregnant and I have to get up and feed the kids?"
"My back hurts and I don't want to be pregnant any more!"
(boo hoo)

So naturally I wake up grouchy. I make myself the victim of my circumstances. (Who wants to come visit me first thing in the morning? anyone?)


This week I have tried to control my emotions and thoughts from the start of the day. It's not easy to do. In fact, it is one of the hardest things I have ever attempted. My brain has been programmed to think negative thoughts first thing in the morning.
So I force myself to take a deep breath and think things like
" I can't wait to take my kids to do _________ today!",
"I love myself and my family because _________"
"I am going to be a better person today because __________"
"I am going to be a really good wife today and let my husband sleep in so he will have a better day at work."
"I am going to be happy today because I deserve to be happy!"
etc.


Has it made a difference?

Y-E-S!!!

Not only do I wake up feeling better, but the feeling carries over to my kids and husband too! I have noticed that the kids don't fight as much, I have more patience, my husband volunteers to help with breakfast, the cluttered house doesn't seem like such a pig sty, and we all enjoy being together so much more.
It has been a noticeable change. I can't believe I have been depriving me and my family of this much happiness all because I wanted to play the victim. How selfish of me.

Because it has been such a great experience, I want to invite all of you to try it too. All you have to do is think positive thoughts from the moment you wake up in the morning. I would love to hear how it goes for you!


A positive thought is a seed that when nurtured can grow into real happiness!
Plant more positive thoughts in your head and your life will become a happier place to live.
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April 8, 2011

10 reasons not to buy ink-printed clothing

April 8, 2011
Top 10 Reasons Not to buy ink-printed clothing.

1. Plastisol inks, the most popular t-shirt printing inks, often need to be cleaned up using chemicals. Water based inks can require chemical clean ups if they dry onto the silkscreen, or other tools during printing. Ink-free printing involves only soap and water clean up.  Ink-free is the environmentally friendly choice.

2. Plastisol and Water Based inks are considered to be hazardous chemicals in their uncured state. They must be disposed of as such according to local regulations.

3. Inks may contain lead. American made inks are lead-free but lead is still found in inks purchased overseas.
  For example, HERE is a site that has recalled items, some containing lead in the screen printing ink.

4. You cannot iron a plastisol screen printed design, or many water based ink designs. The ink will melt and smear.

5. The design can also stick to itself or another item if it is put into a hot dryer or exposed to other forms of heat.

6. Over time, the ink will wear and break down, causing cracks in the design. This always happens to my favorite t-shirts.

7. Also, due to wear, the ink will fade over time. Ink-free shirts will look just as good wash after wash. There is nothing on them to fade of wear out.

8. The hand, or thickness and touch, of the ink design can be thick and sticky, or even scratchy. Even when water based inks are used you can still feel the design on the shirt. In contrast, ink-free printed shirts leave nothing but soft fabric for your fingers to touch.

9. The CPSIA (Consumer Product Safety Improvement Act) 2008, requires that children's items must be lead free. If a company cannot prove that an item is lead free it must be tested by a third party. This drives up costs for children's ink-printed clothing.
Because we don't use ink, there is no concern about lead. And we can keep our costs down while still providing the highest quality toddler t-shirts available anywhere!

10. Everyone owns ink-printed clothing. There are so many screen printers out there that print using the same ol' inks. Be unique and choose something ink-free!
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April 7, 2011

Easter Projects - Idea Roundup!

April 7, 2011
Need an Easter Project?
Here's a handful of fun, colorful, Easter ideas that will make you DIY till you're dizzy.
Enjoy!



 Bowtie Tutorial from papernstitch






 Craft Thread Eggs by Craftberry Bush


Peeps Rice Krispy Pops by Love from the Oven



Easter Silouettes by k.i.s.s.



Marshmallow Bunny Plushie by Dandelions and Lace


Bunny Easter Buckets by Positively Splendid

Peeps Bunny Bunting by Rae at MADE (found on V and Co. blog)

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April 6, 2011

{ Rainbow Krispies }

April 6, 2011
I posted thisrecipe for Rainbow Rice Krispy Treats a while back.  With spring and Easter in the air I thought they would brighten things up around here!  They make a yummy after school snack or a fun anytime treat.
And they would be so cute at an Easter Party!


I made these happy rainbow krispy treats for my son's preschool class last week.
They were learning about rainbows :)
They are so vibrant, colorful, and rainbow-licious!


Rainbow Krispies:
You are going to be making 4 small batches of treats (it is faster than it sounds.)

For each small batch:

1 1/2 Tbs. Butter,
5-8 drops of food coloring (Blue, Green, Yellow, Red)
1/2 of a 10.5 oz bag of mini marshmallows
3 cups of Rice Krispies


1. Melt the butter in a pot over med/low heat.

2. Add food coloring to desired color. I added between 5-8 drops of color per batch. Blue, Green, Yellow, Red.

3. Add mini marshmallows to butter and stir until melted.

4. Remove from heat.

5. Add rice krispies and stir until well combined.

6. Pour mix into a large buttered casserole dish or roasting pan.
Use buttered spatula to press the krispies down.

7. Wash your pan or use a new pan to avoid mixing colors.
8. Repeat this process for the next 3 layers.



Let set until completely cooled and hardened.


Cut into squares and enjoy!


P.S. mmmmm, they are soooo good!

Photobucket

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April 5, 2011

Vitamin D - A Sunshine Solution

April 5, 2011
This stuff is a big deal!


We have been hearing a lot about the importance of Vitamin D lately. Doctors and Scientist are discovering that it effects us waaay more than we once thought. 


WHAT HAPPENS IF YOU DON'T GET ENOUGH?
30-80% of our population is deficient!
Vitamin D deficiency has been long known to cause Rickets, a disease that makes bones soft and weak. Deficiancy can also possibly lead to heart disease, chronic pain, Fibromyalgia, hypertension, arthritis, depression, inflammatory bowel disease, obesity, PMS, Crohns Disease, cancer, MS and other autoimmune diseases, athsma, and even cancer.
The Vitamin D Council states that Vitamin D deficiency can also cause stroke, osteoporosis, muscle weakness, muscle wasting and birth defects.



WHAT IS VITAMIN D ANYWAYS? 
It's more than just a vitamin. It is a "prohormone" that your body produces from cholesterol. It influences at least 200 of your genes, but could influence as many as 3,000! It aids in the absorption of calcium and helps form strong bones. And it goes much farther beyond that to help repair your body at a cellular level (referenced here.)

Vitamin D is also a mega- immune system booster. It is very effective in preventing colds and the flu.

And even more amazing, it is being used to treat cancer! According to Dr. Mercola, there are over 800 studies showing it's effectiveness against cancer.

Read more about the benefits and studies on Dr. Mercola's site.



MY STORY:
I started learning about Vitamin D when my sister, who was living in Iowa, wasn't feeling well and couldn't get over the feeling that something was wrong. So got her vitamin levels tested. When the tests came back the results showed that her Vitamin D levels were very low. So she found a great supplement and immediately started to feel better. She even started her kids on daily dosages and she saw something marvelous happen. Her kids never got sick!

I was astounded when she told me about all of this. My kids had been fighting colds off and on for 3 months and I was desperate for a solution. Once I got them on Vitamin D supplements the colds quickly went away and never came back! I am a true believer in the power of this vitamin!



WHERE DO YOU GET VITAMIN D?
Sunshine is our main source of obtaining our daily dosage of Vitamin D but people in this sedentary, electronic-driven age bolt from their home to their car to their desk jobs, where they spend the day under florescent lights. And when the day is over it is straight back to their car and into their house.

The skin produces 10,000 IU of vitamin D in response to 20-30 mins of sunlight. This is 50 times the amount the US government recommends!

Yes, I am guilty of spending days locked inside. I often choose to spend any free time I have on my laptop in my dark living room. I have to force myself to enjoy the benefits of the miraculous sunshine that lies only steps away from my door. But what an incredible difference it makes when I sit outside in the glorious Arizona sunshine. It does more than boost immunity, it is a mood booster as well.

Low levels of Vitamin D can be also found in foods such as:
•Fish (preferably wild caught)
•Cod liver oil
•Mushrooms
•Liver
•Eggs (preferably from free-range chickens)


WHAT ABOUT SUNSCREEN?
We are also a sunscreen-loving society, and for good cause. We all want to look young and fight off the dangers of skin cancer. But to boost your Vitamin D levels, skip the sunscreen for the first 10-15 minutes and just enjoy the miracle that your skin is. Your skin actually MAKES this vitamin! No supplements needed. But if you will be outside for more than 15-30 minutes protect your skin with a good sun block.



Most regions have seasons that make it near impossible to sit in the sun. I live in Arizona where the summers are blazing hot and 15 minutes outside would practically make you pass out. Others live in freezing cold regions where winters don't allow anyone to leave their homes for more than a few minutes and even then they are covered from head to toe. In any case, it is good idea to have your doctor test your vitamin levels and if you are low or deficient in Vitamin D ask about supplements. There are plenty available over the counter, and doctors can also provide a Vitamin D shot.
So many of us are lacking this important vitamin so it wouldn't hurt to get tested.

Spring is here and the weather is getting warm. Get outside and enjoy the sun!
A little Vitamin D will make you feel a whole lot better, and keep you healthy for life!




Other References:
http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2010/09/06/vitamin-d-linked-to-cancer-and-autoimmune-disease-genes.aspx

http://www.webmd.com/diet/vitamin-d-deficiency

http://tdathletesedge.wordpress.com/2010/08/11/vitamin-d/
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April 2, 2011

Creativity comes in many forms.

April 2, 2011
Sometimes it's hard to look at the bright side when your 2-year-old finds your makeup and smears your favorite mascara and eyeliner all over his cute little face.
:(
But I imagine that he is a budding artist and he is using his face as a canvas. At least that keeps me from yelling.

Our 4 year old is becoming quite the imaginitive builder. He LOVES his legos and this week he built himself a MONSTER TRAIN (monster truck/train hybrid) with big wheels and a "real" boiler filled with hot water.  I just wish that filling the "boiler" didn't involve flooding the bathroom counters and floor.  :)


 
No matter what form it comes in, I'm amazed and inspired by their creativity!

But I still get really nervous when the house goes quiet. . .

What kinds of mischief/creativity do your kids get into?


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