Monday, August 31, 2015

Bridesmaid Series: Katie

This weekend is my bridal shower ... I'm so excited to see what my girls have put together for me ... I'm positive it will be nothing less than perfection! I'm also super excited because I'll be seeing this lovely lady ... my next bridesmaid in the Bridesmaid Series:

Or should I say Kitten.  I met Katie when working at Ruby Tuesday.

{I must make a confession here - I wasn't the nicest person the last year I was working there, I was over the restaurant scene and therefore it reflected in my interactions with people there.}

But Kaite ... she broke through my "tough exterior" and became one of my very favorite people.  Katie has a heart, that when she loves you - she really loves you - really cares for your well being and always looks out for you.  Our friendship started out more as a partnership as we bar-tended together on the weekends.  When you spend hours in a small space with someone constantly interacting together and playing off each other with others you develop a rhythm.  It was after just a few shifts together that I knew we'd be friends for life.

Katie and I at Ladies Night

Katie is an ambitious young lady - and very intelligent.  She is always telling me stories and giving me information about things you wouldn't normally think she would be interested in, but she'll surprise you.  She can also talk to anyone about anything - I'm serious - you put her anywhere and she will find something to talk to someone (intelligently) about.

She of course had a fun side - Katie and I regularly had 'Ladies Nights' with our friend Laura and we still try to squeeze them in here and there as life gets busy - one in particular is my favorite.  I won't go into great detail but lets just say someone had a little too much to drink and someone else found that someone in the movie theater bathroom passed out with her pants down ;)

Katie and I at Ladies Night
Classic Katie ... Always a great time

Katie and I at Ladies Night

Katie and I at Ladies Night

Katie and I at Ladies Night

Katie is one of the most positive people I've meet and is always my best cheerleader.  This wedding journey wouldn't have been as fun without her :) 

Katie and I at my Bachelorette Party
Katie and I at my Bachelorette Weekend

Wednesday, August 26, 2015

Bridesmaid Series: Laura

creating a wedding

Continuing along with my Bridesmaid Series {and I must say - this is in no particular order} next up:
Laura Pinsonneault
Ahhh Laura .. my little Canadian.   I met Laura when I first started working at Ruby Tuesday way back in 2005.  EVERYONE we came in contact with there thought we were either sisters, twins or mistook us for each other.  We never saw it - we have very different features - but it happened almost every night.  In fact we had a co-worker that thought we not only looked like each other but that together we looked like Winnie Cooper from the wonder years - and called us Winnie and Mini Winnie.

Young Laura and I
Winnie and Mini Winnie 

Laura is my non-conventional friend - I don't know what other way to put that.  She doesn't follow the main stream trend.  She works in fashion {Urban Outfitters Corporate Office} and loves all things beauty products.  She always pulls off things I would never dream of and looks effortless doing it!  She has a style all her own and that is one of the things I adore about her.  She is a risk taker - she might not classify herself as one - but she has picked up and moved her life for her love and her dreams on different occasions {and it has paid off}

Laura and I have had many adventures together and many a nights with another bridesmaid {Katie - we'll get to her later} and no matter what we always end up with priceless memories and lots of laughs! 

One of many girls nights ....
One of many girls nights .... 

Bills @ Miami Game
Bills @ Miami Game 

Laura and I - Twins?
Laura and I - Twins?

Laura's Free Spirit
Laura's Free Spirit 

She is a kind, sweet, genuine, caring person and would never hurt a fly - she is Canadian after all ;)  I miss her dearly now a days as she lives far away ... but we find ways to keep in touch 

oovoo dates

Wamp Designs Etsy Shop

Monday, August 24, 2015

Bridesmaid Series: Courtney

creating a wedding

I have been in the midst of preparation these past couple of weeks, with the wedding just about a month away ... its crunch time.  One of my life savers during this time has been my bridesmaids! So I wanted to take the next seven ... yes seven ... posts to highlight each of my girls.  First Up:

Courtney is my cousin on my mom's side - however we didn't actually meet until I was about 10 years old.  When Courtney was young she was the epitome of a sweet little girl.  Hair always in curls, cute hand sewn dresses - always, and a smile.  Courtney lived in Buffalo for quite a while and then moved to Florida - she may have moved back and forth a few times.  While we were family we weren't very close growing up due to distance ... that is until her 19th birthday.

Courtney's 19th Birthday
{Left to Right: Courtney, Marie, Me}

My mom had told me that Courtney was going through a break up and could really use some fun to distract her ... the rest is history.  From then on we became such great friends and better family.  We even attempted cooking Thanksgiving Dinner for our entire family one year - We were lucky to find our friendship at the most fun points in our lives - our early 20's

The adventures we have been on together are both hilarious and endless.  Whether it be mud sliding at a concert, going to the beach in February, Bills games in below 0 temps, or that one time we got those bow ties??  She has always had a good spirit about doing new things.

Beach Day At Siesta
{Beach Days At Siesta}

Football Night
{ One Of Many Football Nights }

Me and Courtney - My 25th Birthday
{ Courtney and I at my 25th Birthday }

Bills Game in Buffalo
{ Bills Game in Buffalo }

Courtney and I at Summer Concerts
{ Summer Concerts } 

{ Ginnie Springs Trips }

I look forward to the adventures we have to come - while they may be a little less wild I'm sure they will be great none-the-less.

Jessicas Signature

Wamp Designs Etsy Shop

Wednesday, August 19, 2015

Back To School

creating an etsy shop
Here in Florida we are just days away from the first day of school - back home {Buffalo} we still have quite some time.  When I first moved here ... long ago ... that was the first thing that I had to get used to.  Starting school in August and ending in May.

In the spirit of starting school I decided to make a few fun items for the shop.

But first ... 

First Day Of School Jessica

First Day Of School Jessica
Lets pay close attention to the lunch box and the socks! ha-ha }

First Day Of School Jessica

A few of these gems have a note on the back with the date or year of school but wouldn't it have been SO much cuter if we were holding a sign that looked something like these??

First Day Of School Year Long

Custom First Day Of School Signs

First Days Of School are important, especially in the early grades. Remember exactly what your kids were like on their first day of Pre-school, Kindergarten, First grade and on. 

Buy using this adorable print you can create a collection of pictures of them holding it on their first day of school. Make it a tradition each year - I bet come their senior year in high school it would be great to look back through the years.

{Clicking the images above will take you to the shop to order}

While I don't have children yet myself I was able to make a cute one for my godson, Cole.
{a cute picture of his first day to come}

Cole's First Day Of Preschool

In an effort to keep up all this cuteness as the school year goes on I decided to make these adorable lunch box note cards!! What a sweet {and adorable} way to encourage your little one.  Especially if its their first year at school.  

Instant Download - Lunch Box Notes

Hope all the kiddos out there have a great school year!

Jessica's Signature

Wamp Designs Etsy Shop

Monday, August 17, 2015

Grocery Shopping

creating a life

I must admit that I don't have a bunch of great tips for grocery shopping, however I do have one useful tool. At least useful for me, and you if you so choose to use it.

grocery shopping ocd ecard

Mike and I have recently changed our eating lifestyle to Clean Eating, basically if it does not have a mother or grow from the ground ... don't eat it.  For me this is challenging since I love white pasta and bread and would have a sugar IV if it wouldn't kill me.  With clean eating it requires a lot of fresh foods - so I have upped my grocery game to once a week! {for a family with no kids ... that a lot}.

I have got it down to a science though.  Cue my handy grocery shopping list:

grocery shopping template

I use this template for each trip, I can plan the meals I will cook that week.  In hind sight this probably wasn't the best week to document since Mike is going out of town on Thursday so I won't be cooking big dinners while he is gone.  Anyways I write down my meals and then survey my kitchen to see what ingredients I already have and which ones I need.

Categorizing my shopping items by Meat, Produce, Dairy, and Misc.

grocery shopping template

While my prep takes about a half an hour to forty five minutes it makes my trip in the store a breeze.  With a handy highlighter in hand {makes it much cleaner than just crossing it out - I know, OCD} I can whizz through the departments and be well on my way.

grocery shopping template

If you'd like to adapt this simple approach to your grocery shopping feel free to download my template below:

Free Download - Grocery Template

Happy Shopping! 

Jessica Signature

Tuesday, August 11, 2015

$5 DIY Photo Booth Props

creating a wedding

$5 DIY Photo Booth Props

Like many people are doing now-a-days we are going to have a photo booth at our wedding.  It is really a great deal and something fun for your guests.  In many cases each person in the booth gets a copy of the photo and an album is made for the bride and groom of all the photos taken that night. 
In our case (and I believe in most) the photos are unlimited - what more could you ask for?

While the company we rented the booth from will be supplying fun props for the booth I wanted to make some fun props myself.  I saw some great ones to buy on Etsy but I couldn't see spending upwards of $50 for something so little ... and not able to be customized.

So I started spinning my wheels and came up with this idea ... best part - I could create about 10 for only $5.00!! Lets start with the supplies:

Black Foam Board: $1 @ Dollar Tree
Wooden Skewers: $1 @ Dollar Tree
White Paint Pen: $3 @ Michael's Craft Store
Pencil - On hand
Exacto Knife - On hand

$5 DIY Photo Booth Props - Supplies

The first thing I did was sketch out some speech and thought blurbs.  I did mine by hand in pencil but you can always print out some from online and trace them.

$5 DIY Photo Booth Props - Trace Blurbs

Once I sketched out enough that I wanted I used the White Paint Pen and traced my sketches.  The foam board did soak up quite a bit so I was sure to go over the lines a few times.

$5 DIY Photo Booth Props - White Chalk Lines

I also thought it would be easier to write my sayings at this time, although you could also do this after we cut them out on the next step.  I wanted to make a few sayings that were fun and a few that were specific to our guests.  In our case most of our guests will be coming from Michigan or Buffalo.

$5 DIY Photo Booth Props - Sayings

The next step was to take my exacto knife and cut out my speech bubble props.  I did this over my rug so I did not make any marks on my hard surfaces.  I also left about a half inch outside of the white line - this way it still showed the line and made mistakes less visible. 

Next I took the a skewer and poked it in between the foam - be very careful at this point - if you push too hard you could come out the front or the back of the foam board.

{I had mike help me take this picture ... see his little foot in the left hand corner??}

While just sticking the skewer in the foam held pretty well I wanted to make sure they didn't start falling apart when people started handling them.  I took some industrial strength glue and covered the tip of the skewer in it.  I put the skewer back in and let it dry.

There you have it ... easy as pie! I made seven signs from 2/3 of the foam board so I would estimate you can make about 10 from each board.  If your really crafty with your placement or size of the signs you could most likely get 12-15 as well.

Another DIY wedding project in the books ... 45 days and counting to the BIG day! 

jessica signature

Wamp Designs Etsy Shop