Monday, April 29, 2013

I'm going to the Blog Workshop Online Conference For Bloggers!

I have not attended a Blogging Conference before.  This has not been for a lack of desire, but I haven't been able to attend as of yet mostly due to three concerns.  One of the most pressing factors prohibiting my attendance was that I would have to travel.  Cost was definitely another factor. I wanted to make sure I could justify the price for the benefits received.  I have seen other online conferences and I was interested in attending, but I was concerned that I would miss information or opportunities if I wasn't able to log-on during one of the sessions. This conference addresses all my top three concerns! So, now I get to go! Wohoo!!! I am excited to learn a TON of valuable information and to become a better Blogger. :)  

1- I don't have to travel.  I can even hang out in my jammies if I want to. :)

2- Cost.  This Blog Conference is offered at a great price! Only $175.  That's half the price of some others I've seen. The registration includes all 3 days of the conference, 6 sessions, the resource list, conference workbook, access to the replay. Ticket sales end May 10th and space is Limited, so check it out!

3- Time Conflict.  If you happen to miss a session or some info, you have unlimited access to a replay of the conference for an entire year to review/re-watch at anytime!

As with any great event there will be fun and great networking opportunities! There are several chances for prizes and giveaways! At the conference you have a chance to win headphones from Subjekt, e-commerce solutions from Cloudswipe, video blogging equipment, LLC packages from LegalZoom, and the one I am looking forward to is the Blog Makeover valued at $500 + $25 gift card.  Yes please!

The amazing speakers that are lined up are specialists in their field ready to share their knowledge with you! The entire goal of this conference is to give you the tools you need to take you from being a Blogger to the next level and become a Bloggerpreneur. I love that!

Another bonus to attending this particular conference is that it supports two great causes. 10% of all ticket sales are being donated to Wellspring Living and the Atlanta Day Shelter for Women and Children.

The mission of Wellspring Living is to confront the issue of childhood sexual abuse and exploitation through awareness, training, and treatment programs for women and girls.

The mission of the Atlanta Day Shelter is to ease the burden of homelessness for women and children and assist in establishing self-sufficiency by providing comprehensive education and supportive services in a manner that respects human dignity.

For more details about the conference feel free to visit: FAQ's, Speakers, Agenda

I hope to see you there!

Saturday, April 27, 2013

Heritage Makers FREE Premier Weekend May 3-6

Guest Post by the Lovely and Talented Miss Jennifer Wise!

Heritage Makers FREE Premier Weekend May 3-6

Do you have a lot of pictures?  What are you doing with them?  Are you giving them a home, and a place for their stories to be told, or are they lying dormant somewhere as a jpeg file?  We all take photos for a reason, right?  There's a story behind every photo, something that wants to be remembered, shared, or appreciated.  But in this digital age we have way more photos than we have time or money to do something with them.  But everybody NEEDS photos, and memories, and the connections they make.  And so you're going to love this post!    

You're going to get let in on a little secret called Heritage Makers.  It's a personal publishing company!  And it's growing by leaps and bounds.  Heritage Makers can give your photos a place to live and tell their stories in COMPLETELY CUSTOMIZABLE, beautiful, heirloom-quality hardbound books (and other products)!  It's a cut above anything you've ever seen.    

And here's the REALLY COOL thing: Heritage Makers is for everyone!  
  • Short on time?  No problem--just use one of over 10,000 pre-designed templates (and change anything you want about a template, too--add more pages or more photos or whatever you want).  New templates are added all the time. 
  • On a budget?  Try Club HM.   You publish using discounted publishing points instead of cash.  You get the best possible price PLUS the cost is spread out over time.  You just pay a certain amount each month to have publishing points deposited in your account, and then you can save them up for your items!  Nothing is out of your price range!  AND there's no fee for Club HM.  Win-win. 
  • Hate scrapbooking or designing?  Perfect.  Try a template.  If you search the Template Gallery for "yearbook," you'll find lots of ways to put a year's worth of photos EASILY into one beautiful book!
  • Love scrapbooking or designing?  Frankly, you're going to think you've died and gone to heaven. 
  • Not sure you can do something like this?  Worried about having questions?  You're in luck!!  With Heritage Makers, you get your own Personal Publishing Coach or consultant who can help you with anything at all.  Plus, there are video tutorials right on the website if you have questions.  The Heritage Makers system is really user-friendly, too!
You can open a free (and always free) account and check it out!  You're going to love how easy it is, and how beautiful and impressive, too.  Just go to and click "login" at the upper right to create an account.  Everything is online all the time (nothing to download onto your computer or anything), so wherever you go with a computer and internet access, you have access to all your projects and photos.  That means you could even work on photo albums or a gift for Mothers Day for 20 minutes over your lunch break at work!  Sh... don't tell.

But here's the BEST PART!  The account you set up will be a Basic account with a decent amount of photo storage space and access to over 3,000 pieces of digital art and 1,000 templates.  When you join Club HMyour account becomes Premier and you have access to over 100,000 pieces of digital art and 10,500 templates!!  AND NEXT WEEKEND YOU CAN SEE WHAT A PREMIER ACCOUNT IS LIKE even with your Basic account!!!  Next weekend is Free Premier Weekend.  From Friday, May 3 at 7:00pm to Mon. May 6 at 12:00pm (MDT), there will be an "unlock Premier" button which will let you use EVERYTHING Heritage Makers has to offer.  Create some projects!!  Anything you create using Premier art will still be available after this weekend is over

So try it out!  Open your account at and try making some projects for fun.  A greeting card or wall canvas or address labels are easy things to start with, but you can make any number of things.  Give it a try and see if Heritage Makers isn't an absolute game-changer for you!  If you have questions, our consultant Jennifer can be reached at  You can also find more information at or at or  

You're going to thank me!  You're about to become the rockstar of your family because you're preserving their heritage and memories (and giving the best gifts ever!), and you're about to become the envy of your friends because YOU'RE all caught up on your photo albums.  You're welcome.

So what do you think? I know that you are going to love it! I love to scrapbook the old fashioned way but it is hard to find the time to do it. This is a great way to complete projects and the quality is good!  It's not cheap paper, it is nice thick paper and it's good quality.  Plus Jennifer can do all sorts of really cool stuff.  She has online workshops where she can walk you through how to get the most out of the program and make your projects perfect! If you love it, let me know! Make sure you leave a comment for me if you join Club HM! The possibilities are endless. Here are some pictures from one of the projects I made with Club HM Premier Membership! A Book Celebrating my 10th Anniversary with my Hubby :)

Leather Cover

Friday, April 26, 2013

Unbroken by Laura Hillenbrand

April Book Club: 

Unbroken: A World War II Story of Survival, Resilience, and Redemption
   by Laura Hillenbrand

I almost don't know how to start a review of this fabulous book.  It was great for so many reasons.  For me the best part of this story was that it was true! Absolutely amazing.  The author, Laura Hillenbrand, did a fabulous job with the research, dedicating 7 years of her life to study to build her understanding of the events and families involved.  I learned so much!

This is the story of the rebellious and stubborn Louis Zamperini.  Louis was a troubled youth always in trouble and even known for being a thief.  Despite his gruff tendencies he was adored by his sisters and loving brother.  It was this brother, Pete, who would train him to become a famous athlete.  After only a short career in running, Louis would become an Olympian sprinter and was quickly closing in on the 4 minute mile.

But the timing was all wrong.  Instead of participating in the next Olympic games 4 years later, Louis found himself as a Lieutenant in the Army Air Forces.  He served as a bombardier aboard the infamous B-24.  1943 would change his life forever.

His plane would crash leaving him and only 2 other members of his crew alive in a life raft with severely limited supplies.  Amazingly he survived thousands of miles across the ocean on the raft in facing dehydration, lack of food, sunburn, shark attacks, and attacks by Japanese gunners.  He survived, but only to become a Prisoner Of War when he finally came to shore.  He would later wish to be back on the raft instead of facing the horror's that awaited him every day in camp.  The POW's were humiliated, starved, beaten, ravaged by preventable illnesses, and worked almost to death.  That stubborn and rebellious Louis Zamperini refused to give in.  He endured every trial that was placed before him, sometimes with hope, humor, rebellion, or even with ruthlessness; he triumphed by sheer force of will.

Louis is an inspiration.  He endured a staggering amount of challenges in his life and used them to become an instrument for good in the world.  If we would all take a page out of Louis's book and overcome our personal weaknesses, leave the past behind us and move forward better because of it, we would live in a different kind of world.  

Wednesday, April 24, 2013

Great Idea Thursday's - 3

Thank you all soooo much for coming to party with me this week! I really appreciate your time to come on over and I am truly grateful that you chose to come have fun with me! I hope you have a great time and come back again! :)

This Week's Feature's are:

Most Viewed

Simplee Sue: Bacon Corn Pancakes

Featured Sweet

Featured Recipe

Memories by the Mile: Barbecue Pork Salad

Featured Craft

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Great Idea Thursday's #2
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This is what I made this week: Disappearing Double Strawberry Cookies

Monday, April 22, 2013

Disappearing Double Strawberry Cookies

We went to a church pot luck last night and I wanted to take something a little different than a basic cookie.  Don't get me wrong you can't really go wrong with a cookie, but I had seen so many wonderful ideas featuring fresh berries that I just couldn't help myself.  So, I combined several different ones and created this cookie.  Since I didn't even get one at the party I took all 4 dozen too I am guessing they must taste ok :)

Print Recipe

Disappearing Double Strawberry Cookies

2 1/2 cups flour
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp kosher salt
1 cup butter (2 sticks)
1 8 oz package cream cheese
2 eggs
2 cups granulated sugar
1 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
1/2 tsp almond extract
1 cup fresh strawberries, finely chopped
1 Tbsp Turbinado sugar
1 Tbsp fresh lemon juice

1 Tbsp butter, softened
1/2 Tbsp strawberry jello powder
1/4 cup strawberry puree
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
3 cups powdered sugar

In a bowl combine the flour, baking powder, and salt.  

Wash and remove the stems from the strawberries.  Pat dry with paper towels and finely chop the berries placing them in a small bowl.  

Add the sugar and lemon juice to the berries and stir to coat.  Set aside.

In a large mixing bowl or Kitchen Aid cream the butter, cream cheese, and sugar for 2-3 minutes.

  Add the eggs one at a time beating well after each addition.  

Add the vanilla and almond extracts and mix.  Scrape down the bowl and add the dry ingredients gradually to the butter mixture in 2 to 3 additions.  Mix to incorporate the flour after each addition.  Scrape down the bowl to make sure that all the ingredients are completely incorporated.  Gently fold in the strawberries.  Just stirring to combine.  If you mix to much your cookies will turn pink :).

Refrigerate the dough for at least 30 minutes and up to overnight.  Preheat your oven to 350˚ F.  Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and drop 12 pieces of dough using a medium a scoop onto the baking sheet.  

Bake the cookies for 13-15 minutes or until the bottoms are starting to brown and the tops are puffed and set.  

Let cool on the baking sheet 3-5 minutes then transfer to a cooling rack to cool completely.

In a mixing bowl combine the butter, jello powder, strawberry puree, and vanilla.  Add 1 cup of the powdered sugar and beat with an electric mixer.  Add another cup of powdered sugar and beat again.  Add the remaining powdered sugar until you reach your desired spreading consistency adding a little more if needed. 

Frost cooled cookies and allow the frosting to set up.

There should be just enough frosting for all of the cookies and to lick the bowl clean.  Oh I mean to make for easy clean up :)

Recipe makes about 4 dozen medium cookies.

*Note: To make strawberry puree, blend fresh strawberries in a food processor, blender, or mash with a fork/potato masher.

Desserts, Strawberry, Cookie

Thursday, April 18, 2013

Mom's Recipes

Have you seen Mom's Recipes? It is the best place on the web for Moms like you to share their favorite recipes and compete for cash and prizes. Whether you're a casual cook or the next Rachael Ray, Mom's Recipes is for you.

Upload your tried-and-true recipes to your own online Cookbook to share with your online social network. Or enter your best recipe in one of our recipe Contests to win great prizes like gift cards and nifty kitchen gadgets. Or just browse for a tasty new meal idea. How do you get started? Easy!

Check it out!

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