Archive | girls

a special day at the american girl doll store

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Audrey turned 5 last week. Every parent throughout history has asked the same question when their baby turns a year older: how did that go so fast? And you can add me into that group. She is our baby and the fact that she just turned five only reiterates the fact that she’s no longer a baby.

I will say that I love the ages of our kids right now (11, 9, 7, 5). They are independent, but not pushing too many limits, able to buckle themselves in the car and generally fun to be around.  We’re sitting in a sweet spot and doing our best to enjoy these days.

Okay, but that’s not what I was going to talk about today.

For Audrey’s birthday, we went shopping for her first American Girl doll. We’ve waited until she was old enough to care for a special doll and a little more interested. A few of her friends have these dolls and her cousins are crazy for all things American Girl, so she was ready and excited to pick out her special birthday gift.

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Did you know you can reserve a personal shopper to show you around and help you pick a doll? It was the best thing ever.  My mom and cutie niece Hadley (who is only 2 months younger than Audrey, but so much tinier!) met us at the American Girl Doll store and we took about an hour shopping around. Our sweet personal shopper, Briana, walked us from doll to doll giving little snippets about each of them and helped Audrey pick out her top three.

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Once she had her top three dolls chosen, they were set out and Briana helped her make her final decision (with just a little bit of input from my mom who was really hoping she would choose a certain one). It was so much easier having someone guide the decisions and be quick with the process.

And her final decision was: Grace! The girl of the year.

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Grace likes baking and has a cute puppy named BonBon and Audrey was sold.

I really love the way the company shows different girls, their histories and stories. Plus, the clothes and accessories are so fun.

After Grace joined our family, we had a little lunch at the American Girl Doll bistro.

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The food was less than fabulous, but the experience was sweet and the girls loved having a birthday luncheon with their dolls.

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I adore having boys, but it sure was fun having a special day with our girl.

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And also? The American Girl Doll store bathroom tile is really cute.

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audrey’s 5th birthday invitations

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My baby is turning 5. What?!

She’s just the best. She brings a girly flair to our family with her constant songs and dancing, she makes us all laugh and maaaybe has her daddy wrapped around her finger. Possibly her mommy and brothers, too.

The kids and I talk about our favorites all the time – favorite colors, favorite food, favorite memory. They all know that my favorite animal is a dolphin (I have been known to cry when I see sea life. I don’t know what it is, they are just so magical and majestic. Sea World is a teary place for me).

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So when Audrey told me she wanted to have a dolphin party for her 5th birthday, there may have been a few secret happy tears. She knows her mama loves them and so she likes them too. See? She’s just the best. (Well, except when she’s not.)

Since I’m kinda into designing things, I had fun creating this invitation for her upcoming party. There probably won’t be a lot of decorations or fancy party food since we’re having it at an indoor pool, but I love making invitations and couldn’t help myself with the dolphin theme.

One little trick I wanted to share with you is how I add the glitter details. The secret? Glitter glue. This one, to be exact.

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I used a free dolphin graphic and glitter digital paper to add to the invitation. The cards are printed on thick matte photo paper from home on this printer.

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Then I filled in the outlines with the glitter glue.

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And filled in the 5 as well.

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The glue dries in about 30 minutes and does not flake off like regular glitter, so it works well for these types of projects.

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I also added a few gold dots to a diy envelope liner (plain paper cut to fit).

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Didn’t they turn out cute?!

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We can’t wait to celebrate our dolphin-loving girl.

(for more information about how I create invitations/graphic design, click here)

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what she wears (dressing Audrey)

Since the day she was born, I have loved dressing my girl. I like classic styles, easy and comfortable with a little bit of color and pattern thrown in for fun. It’s how I dress myself and what I gravitate to when shopping for Audrey.

My baby is now four, and sometimes she has an opinion on what she’d like to wear, but mostly not. I know. It won’t last long. So for now, I’m running with it.

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joyfolie loveliness + a discount

Among the most beautifully made, beautifully designed and beautifully photographed products available today, Joyfolie shoes and clothing ranks high, high, high up there in my books.

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What once started as a creative mama sewing baby shoes for her little girl has grown into a gorgeous company with new styles being added frequently. The designs are feminine and classic with a whimsical/funky edge and are perfect for you and your stylish little ones.

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Audrey has worn several different pairs of joyfolie shoes – more so when she was younger and not so hard on her fancy shoes, but I still like to get her a special pair for the holidays or special occasions. The ruffled capelet she wore in our Tiny Dancer photos is just gorgeous and we have a few dresses from the line as well (which I love).

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Joyfolie has graciously offered JDC readers 25% off until midnight April 28. If you have a girly-girl in your life, now is the time to spoil her with something lovely.

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Use discount code SPRINGJONES25 for 25% off and don’t forget to check the sale items and shoes for women. If you are a size 9, you should get this pair – they are so perfect! Discount is good on all items except those marked new. Visit www.joyfolie.com to take a peek.

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additions and progress in Audrey’s room

Audrey’s new bedroom was put on hold for the past month or so to finish up other projects, but now I’m back at it and excited to get things put together.  To keep you in the loop, this is the direction I’m going.  The walls were painted with Sherwin Williams Pure White (nice, maybe a little on the chilly side, but it works), the striped rug is from Crate & Barrel and her bed was a craig’s list find painted Sherwin Williams Rushing River.

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I ordered this metal cart from World Market when it was on sale and it works perfectly as a night stand.

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The dotted metal is fun and different and the three shelves hold lots of favorite books.

Ryan installed her chandelier yesterday. It’s an old fixture from an estate sale that my mom gave me for Audrey’s nursery. I originally sprayed it black and gave it a new coat of glossy white for this room.

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Another addition is this sleek tufted ottoman.

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I spotted it at target a few weeks ago, and then again last week but this time on clearance (love that). Audrey uses it as a stage for her fabulous shows she puts on for her babies. Multipurpose furniture is the best.

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Yesterday I put these paper medallions on the ceiling above the bed.

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They are stuck up there with a dab of hot glue, which I don’t really recommend because I’m pretty sure it will peel off the ceiling paint when they are taken down. But they are cute and it holds them up, so we’ll deal with the consequences later.

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Still to come: bedding (on it’s way), art (being collected) and a wall of built-ins (still need to figure those out). It’s slow going, but coming together!

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tiny dancer photoshoot with my baby girl

When Paige was here this past fall, we set out one very chilly morning for a girly photoshoot at this gorgeously dilapidated old farmhouse nearby.

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Paige styled the whole thing – choosing our outfits and bossing us around with how to do our hair (kidding. She’s not bossy. But she did have a vision and I was just along for the ride). Being in front of the camera is not totally comfortable for me, but if I’ve learned anything about having your picture taken is that the more awkward you feel, the more awkward the photos turn out so you might as well just relax and smile and try to look cute so you’ll like the end product.

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And, my goodness, I just adore the end product. Paige is such a talented photographer – knowing how to find the right light and make the experience fun and comfortable.

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She perfectly captured our girly ballerina side, a tiny dancer photoshoot as Paige called it (she was headed to the elton john concert when she returned to atlanta so that probably has something to do with the cute name. PS. I love that song).

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Outfit change!

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 I wore this dress for my little sister’s wedding when I was six months pregnant with No. 2. It was all pinned up around the back to keep it from falling off, but I just love the juxtaposition of the crumbling down house and unkempt grass with the fancy black dress.

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Promptly after the photoshoot, we put on our warm coats and went to starbucks for an extra-hot latte. We were freezing!  What’s so great about these photos is that you would never guess that we were shivering. Paige did the most amazing job.

For christmas, I gave Audrey a little book with all of my favorite photos from our morning at the dilapidated farm house.

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It’s only a few inches wide and such a sweet memory for her to look through.

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 What a beautiful gift Paige gave the two of us to have this mommy-daughter moment documented for always. I sure love my little Audrey-girl and feel so grateful for a tiny dancer in my life.

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tea party birthday

We celebrated our little Audrey-girl with a pretty tea party that was every bit as sweet and happy as she is.

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Using a color palette of pinks, oranges, gold and black and white kept everything cohesive without being overly themed and made decorating really fun for me.

I started with these cute tea-bag invitations:

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A little card tucked into a glassine bag folded to get that tea bag shape. The no. 4 tag attached with baker’s twine with glittered edges is my favorite part.

tea-party-birthday-invitation (invitation by me, no. 4 artwork by lindsayletters)

We hosted the tea party at our house and set up in our rarely-used dining room just to make it feel extra special.

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The initial inspiration for the colors were pulled from a roll of wrapping paper (found at marshalls) that worked perfectly for a table runner. It gives cheerful pattern and bright color to the table and makes a big impact for only a few dollars.

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The light fixture got a fancy treatment with tissue paper fringe (three colors of tissue cut into strips, fringed and then hung with scotch tape directly to the linen shade) and this ruffled crepe paper was draped across the window for more color.

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I inherited my grandma’s mismatched set of tea cups and saucers and I loved pulling them out for the party.

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Lunch was tea sandwiches, fruit and crackers.

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For dessert we had striped chocolate pudding in mini glass jars with an extra dollop of whip cream and golden sprinkles.

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Audrey’s little friends were perfectly polite and had a fun time drinking tea (with sugar cubes, of course) and celebrating.

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And the birthday girl had a happy, happy day.

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a fancy party {audrey turns three}

Our little darling turned three last week and we threw her a fancy party.

{the invites as seen here}

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The theme was a mix of fancy/glitter/crowns/gold/silver/girly/ruffles/polkadots.
How’s that for a concise theme?

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The table was set with a ruffled tablecloth {made painstakingly by me}, place setting paper placemats {from here}, silver vessels filled with inexpensive carnations, and a homemade cake on my favorite beaded silver cake plate. It turned out fancy and pretty without being over-the-top.

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We served tea sandwiches, fruit, sparkly lemonade and the cutest sugar cookies in the shape of a crown for dessert.

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The birthday girl had the best time at her little party. I think she felt pretty special.

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and we loved celebrating our sweet Audrey.

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Want to see what happened after the guests left?

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Atlas felt left out and decided to help himself to the cake. Bad puppy.

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Coming up this week … a few tutorials for projects seen at the party.

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book week: favorite books for girls

Here we are – half way through book week.

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Have you enjoyed all of the great book suggestions? I have a handful to check out that were recommended in the comments. If you have any other favorites, please be sure to leave a comment and let us know!

So let’s talk about favorite books for girls.

As I’ve mentioned before, children’s books have always charmed me and I accumulated quite a collection of sweet stories and illustrations before I had any children. It’s fun to now watch our littlest enjoy those girly books {truth be told, her brothers love them, too}.

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Here are a few of my favorite choices for girls:

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Once again, it was so hard to narrow down my favorites. There are so many beautifully illustrated books with charming stories to choose from!

If you have any go-to girl books, do share.

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I went with my daughter to the ballet

  Last Saturday was a special day for me and my baby girl {who is really not a baby anymore}.

In our neighborhood of friends, there is a little group of girls all about the same age. It is the most darling thing to watch these girls become friends and do girly things together. Each of them has a brother {or two} and we do plenty of non-girly things as families {camping, crabbing, sledding, etc} so just spending the day with the girls is a special treat.

This past weekend, we celebrated one of the girl’s birthdays by going to the ballet. The moms and daughters dressed up, drove in to the city and prayed that our babes would sit quietly through the show.

I’m sure this is a special moment for any mom-daughter duo. But particularly so for me as this is the stage on which I lived out my little girl ballerina dreams.

I adore ballet and still wish I had the dedication, the grace and the feet to be a real ballerina.

All of the girls did amazing well. They sat through the show in awe of the pretty, sparkly costumes and ballerinas. Audrey was adorable. I could not believe she understood the story even though it was new to her. She teared up when I told her Cinderella couldn’t go to the party because she didn’t have a pretty dress to wear.  She was mesmerized by the carriage {not sure why, but she was very into it}, and at each intermission she didn’t want it to end. I really didn’t know what to expect taking a 2 1/2 year old to the ballet. And I’m trying to be careful about putting my own dreams on her so I didn’t want to talk it up too much. If ballet isn’t her thing, I want to be okay with that. But she loved it. She can’t stop talking about it. She wants to go again.

It truly was a magical day for me as a mommy of a daughter.

Please don’t get me wrong: I love my boys. I’m so glad to have three of them to learn from, play with, enjoy. I even took them to the ballet last Christmas. I grew up with two sisters, have only one boy cousin and nannied for a family with three girls. I understand girls. I like pretty things and fake eyelashes and am not a fan of rodents or insects of any kind. I’m girly. So to have a daughter that I can identify with in these ways is a blessing. This in no way diminishes my love of being a mom of boys, I’m just thankful that I also get to explore my feminine side by being a mom of a girl.

A girly girl who also likes the ballet.

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little pink toesies

It is a right of passage for every mommy of a daughter …

and one I’ve been waiting for for a long time.

Painting the toes of my baby girl.

It’s such a silly thing to be excited about, but I really have been looking forward to this moment in motherhood.

A few minutes with just me and my girl.  Being girls together.

Just the two of us. And our hot pink toes.

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she’s two

In January 2010, this blog was born. It had been around for a few months prior, but it really came to life right around the new year. I was very, very pregnant with No.4 – our first girl – and those first few posts often centered around her. Her nursery, her name, girlie projects and sharing the emotions all mommies go through at the end of their pregnancies {excitement for the new babe, nervousness about change, impatience with just wanting to be done}.

The blog was started when she was growing inside me and in a weird way, I feel like she is what inspired it.  For some reason, having a daughter awoke a greater sense of creativity in me that I wanted to share.  I suddenly desired to expand beyond stationery design into sewing and crafting and creating as many flowers as I could figure out how to make.

I love this little girl and all the ways she has changed our family … and especially me.

Many of you have been here from the beginning. You remember those first posts, the frequent photos of our sweet newborn girl wearing yet another headband. You’ve heard stories about Audrey and watched her grow along side of us.

Every once in a while I meet a reader while out running errands. The way they recognize me is almost always because they recognized Audrey first. That makes me smile.  I like sharing her life here on the blog – someday she will protest, but for now she’s my little companion and muse and favorite spunky/sweet two-year-old and I just can’t resist sharing her with you.

Audrey-girl turned two a few weeks ago, which means the blog did as well.  They are both growing, changing, and bring me {and hopefully you!} such joy.

I thank you for being a part of our lives. It has been the best two years.

 

 

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my favorite shoes for girls {with a discount!}

It has been a crazy winter weather week … more on that later.  But since I now have power and I am up before the kids I wanted to share a great discount with you {as was promised for yesterday’s post}.  Just a side note: I don’t really like when plans change {like a two day power outage} and I have no control and then I’m behind on schedule.  Please forgive me … art prints, JDC|Monthly, emails … they will come. I promise. They will just be a few days later than I’d like.

Okay, so my favorite shoes for girls. I’ve shared this company before, but I just can’t get enough of Joyfolie‘s most beautiful products.

First a preview of a few of the styles in the upcoming spring collection:

 

So pretty! Those gray stripes will be making their way into our life soon.

Because a new collection is about to debut, Jessica {the creator of Joyfolie} is offering a generous discount to JDC readers on the current collection in her shop.

Like the shimmery red julie shoe:

Love the bright print of the sabrina

The saidi is the style Audrey receive for Christmas {she loves them and so do I}

Funny how I’m not really a shoe girl myself, but I can’t get enough of cute ones for my little one.

To receive  30% off any item on the shoe page that is currently in stock use the code

JONES30

at checkout. The discount code is good until next friday {1/27} so start shopping!

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the sweetest little dollies you ever did see

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I made a few dolls for a few special little girls in my life.

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She is wearing a cable knit ruffle-front sweater {not the easiest material to sew, but oh so cute} with yellow dot bubble skirt.

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A little suit of jersey ruffles – sweet and simple.

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Sawyer is funky with a polka-dot top, floral bubble skirt and a teensy flower pin {sewn on, not pinned}

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The real Isabella is the best dressed little girl around, often sporting baby legs, so I decided to make a mini pair for this baby. 

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Surely not as cute as the real little girls, but I’m pretty happy with how they turned out.

{I used this pattern to make the dolls}

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little girls

Our little girl was invited to a birthday party this weekend.

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I know she is only 7 months old, but it is the sweetest thing that she already has friends and goes to birthday parties.

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{the birthday girl}

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I can’t wait to see these girls playing together in a few years!

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The party was a sort of fairy tale, woodland theme and was so thoughtfully done.

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Yum : first donut for this baby girl!

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Little girls are awfully sweet.

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