Tuesday, August 31, 2010

The New Wisk®: Protein Lab

Today I'm continuing to work with Wisk to tell you more about their brand new laundry detergent, in its red-hot bottle with Stain Spectrum Technology. This time I'm conducting a laundry experiment with the help of my assistant. You can see how it went below.

Like many kids, my preschooler is hard on her clothes. Now that fall is approaching I know I'm going to be seeing stains on the knees of her favorite pants. It's good to know I can count on Wisk's Stain Spectrum Technology to take care of those!

Wisk is available in August at major retailers nationwide, such as Walmart, Target and Kroger. Suggested Retail Price: $5.99 for 50 fl oz. bottles that cleans 32 loads. Try it for yourself, with this $1.00 off coupon.


Disclosure: This is the second in a series of posts sponsored by Wisk. I received monetary compensation for my participation, but my review and opinions are my own.

Guest Post: Malia from Yesterday on Tuesday

This Thursday will be our first Crafty Soiree! I hope you're planning on joining me! I thought it would be a lot fun to introduce my readers to my lovely cohost Malia☺

Hi There, Friends of Katie's Nesting Spot! I'm so happy to meet you.

My name is Malia and my blog is called "Yesterday on Tuesday." My four year old daughter always starts off a story with "Yesterday...On Tuesday..." whether it happened Tuesday or not. With the idea that blogging is storytelling, I thought "Yesterday on Tuesday" would be a cute name for my site.

So what goes on at Yesterday on Tuesday? Lots of fun stuff. I enjoy making things like this Back to School Wreath:

Wreath 9

Back To School Wreath

I also like to bake and cook (especially sweet stuff) like these Chocolate Chip Cookies which have a "secret ingredient":


Chocolate Chip Cookies

And I love finding unique vintage pieces-- whether at Antique Shows like The Barn House Antiques Show or at my local thrift stores.

BarnhouseBarn House

Thrifty Vintage Art Find

I'd love to get to know you better! Stop by Yesterday on Tuesday anytime.

Thanks to Katie for letting me introduce myself today. BIG Hug, Malia

Don't forget to join us in two days on Thursday! I'm so excited, I can't wait to see all your crafty goodness! You can find out more details, here, see you soon.


Monday, August 30, 2010

Squinkies Product Review

Squinkies are all the rage in our neighborhood. The preschool and elementary crowd love to collect and trade them. They can be really hard to find, our closest Target normally is completely cleared out. I've never even seen any of the playsets there, only the empty spot where they ought to be. I think part of their appeal is that each Squinkie comes in it's own little ball, that definitely makes things more fun!
We were sent the Cupcake Surprize Bake Shop and a set of Squinkies to review. We knew we'd love them. Because we already had a Bubble Set, picked up the third Target we looked at. Their miniature size makes them great rewards and ER has been earning them with a good behavior sticker chart. She's highly motivated to collect them all! It's fun how four out of the sixteen in the package are in colored balls, so they are a "surprise" when you open them.

ER really likes the variety of Squinkies. There are cute babies, sweet little girls, puppies, animal friends, kitties, and more. I liked how the paint job is done well and the detail paint is where it supposed to be. They are really cute and ER spends a lot of time just looking at them. They are perfect toys to bring along with us in her little purse.

I wish I'd bought her the Princess Surprize bracelet set when I got her the series #1 pack. You can hook on Squinkies and wear them on your bracelet. For now, we'll continue to keep checking our local store for it to be back in stock. The Cupcake Surprize Bakeshop gives all your Squinkies some place to play. One side is a bedroom and the other is the bakeshop. It comes with little furniture for the Squinkies, each has a little hole on the bottom and they attach to pegs on the accessories. Nine Squinkies come with the set and provide a nice variety to start your collection.

One of the coolest things about the Bakeshop is that it doubles as a gumball machine. Only the gumballs are replaced by, you guessed it, Squinkies. You add your Squinkies in their balls to the top portion of the Bakeshop, pop in one of the coins that come with it, crank the heart, and a ball rolls out.

The best part is that when the inevitable happens, and your child looses the two coins that come with it, you can still make it work with a penny or dime. ER spends the longest time just cranking out the Squinkies through the gumball machine again and again. She giggles each time one pops out.Squinkies are now available at major retailers including: Walmart, Target, Toys R Us, and most other toy and online retailers.

You can learn more about Squinkies at:
Website: http://www.squinkies.com/
Blog: http://blog.squinkies.com/
Facebook Fan Page: www.facebook.com/squinkies
Twitter: www.twitter.com/squinkies


Disclosure: A set of 16 Squinkies Bubble Pack and a Cupcake Surprize Bake Shop were sent to us to review. Opinions expressed are personal and unbiased.

Sunday, August 29, 2010

Cupcake Birthday Book

This book has been sitting in my to-do pile for an unseemly amount of time. Always full of good intentions, I had planned to use it for ER's 1st birthday pictures. However, it's her 4th birthday that it was finally used for.
It came as an unfinished blank board book with white pages, which is really nice because you don't have to prep them like you would, if using one of your kid's old books. Plus, you can't beat the fun shape. I used the most adorable birthday paper I've been hording in my stash from Heidi Grace, super cool Doodlebug Design Inc. sugar coated glittery paper, and a neat 3D embellished title from Jolee's Boutique.
I'm not going to lie, cutting and adding the paper to the shaped pages was time consuming. But it was well worth the effort when it was all done. The two birthday themed papers were double sided so I used the coordinating blue striped backside papers too. A variety of rub-ons, birthday themed embellishments, and vellum sticker quotes were used throughout the book. All the photo mats and page edges are inked. I put all of my journaling on one page at the beginning, so that the rest of the pages wouldn't look cluttered.
Once the papers were decoupaged onto the pages with Mod Podge, the rest of the project went quickly. I had an especially good time adding all the details. I just love playing with pretty things. They make the book so delightful and touchable. Just remember that if you add any bulk to your project the book is not going to fold flat any more. Thanks for coming by☺

Shared At: , Get Your Craft On Tuesday
Making the World Cuter Monday, Market Yourself Monday at Sumo's Sweet Stuff, Craftastic Monday at Sew Can Do, Motivate Me Monday at Keeping It Simple, Just Something I Whipped Up at The Girl Creative, Strut Your Stuff at Somewhat Simple, Thrilling Thursday at Paisley Passions, Look at Me! at Fun to Craft, Feature Yourself Friday at Fingerprints on the Fridge, and Fun Friday Finds at Kojo Designs.


Saturday, August 28, 2010

My Shutterfly Experience

We have oh just a few photo books from Shutterfly, can you tell we're fans? These are our personal collection of 8X8 books, my personal favorite because the covers are full color and you can personalize the binding. We've also given several photo books as gifts. Grandparents really like them.
Take this photo book of my family's trip to the Grand Canyon. I love that I can create it once and then order another copy. I can easily change some of the pictures or edit it slightly depending on who I'm giving it to. In this case, I added several pages to the version I gave my parents. That way their entire trip out to see us in Santa Fe and our trip together to Arizona is all together in one place.

Plus their customer service is great. Our most recent photo book is from our trip to Chicago and on one of our copies the text was cut off. I sent a message via Twitter to Shutterfly and quickly got a response. He ended up arranging for a new copy to be overnighted to us.

It's nice how you can get professional looking results with Shutterfly, and you don't have to be digital software expert. They have a variety of page layouts and a lot of backgrounds and fonts to choose from. There are even predesigned books done in partnership with Creating Keepsakes that are beautiful. Their Year In Review photo book is one of my favorites.
Besides photo books, every year I made photo calendars for gifts. Again, their variety of backgrounds and styles can't be beat. Their stylish designs range from basic black and white, to cute seasonal, and sophisticated. I used another company, once, and came right back to Shutterfly. Being able to save important dates and use them again and again is a great time saver. I don't have to enter them each year when I go to make the calendars, they are saved in my account.Another way we frequently use Shutterfly is to make personalized photo cards. We have friends and relatives that live out of state that send ER gifts. I like to take a picture of her wearing the outfit or using the gift and make them a photo card. Many designs you can also add more photos inside the card too. Again, I have my contacts saved in my account and with a couple of clicks it's so easy to send the cards directly to them, it's just a little extra for the cards to be stamped and sent.

We have gotten Christmas cards through Shutterfly for three years now and they are printed on thick heavy weight cardstock with exclusive designs. I always get compliments on them.

What makes creating photo gifts so easy is that I have unlimited photo storage. I upload frequently and all my photos are waiting for me for whenever I have time to do something with them. I can work on a year in review book a couple months at a time and it's all ready by December.

I use their free Share Sites to share pictures with family and friends, that's mine above. I was able to customize the appearance and layout. It's like having a free blog because you can post updates, upload photos, add video, and more. Our privacy setting are so that only members I invite by email can view it so I feel secure sharing our lives on it. It's a great tool for keeping in touch. I can upload more pictures on my personal account and choose which ones to share with everyone on the Share Site.

I also used a Share Site as the Session Rep for ER's preschool class to share photos from throughout the year with the class and to keep parents updated on important information. Whenever anyone added something an email went out to all the members so they'd know to go check it. Plus members could add their own pictures and notes to the class, very handy

Shutterfly has so much to offer and fantastic products, the quality of which are much higher than competitors. It's the one company who's products I've never been disappointed in. If you have another service you like, I'd love to know what it is and why you like it. Please share your experience in the comments☺


Friday, August 27, 2010

Moon Dough Review

ER has been fixated on this box at Target for a few weeks, so she was THRILLED when the Moon Dough Barnyard arrived in the mail for us to review from Team Mom.

Moon Dough is a new molding compound for kids ages 2-4. Soft and marshmallow-like, it cleans up easily, and never dries out, so you can use it over and over. It's also hypo-allergenic, wheat free, and available in eight colors: blue, green, white, orange, purple, red, pink, and yellow. There are numerous playsets available including: Moon Dough Pizza Shop, Magic Molding Doghouse, Moon Dough Burger Shop, and the Barnyard we received to review. Moon Dough refill packs are also available.
We opened our box up and found it contained:
  • A simple to assemble barnyard with molds for a cow, pig, sheep, and horse
  • Fence and hay bale molds
  • Themed playmat
  • Three colors of Moon Dough, ours included white, yellow, and blue.
The Moon Dough's texture reminds me of those orange circus peanut candies; it's not sticky at all. ER quickly figured out how to use the barn and knew she needed to push Moon Dough into the spot at the top. Then all it took was two cranks of the handle and we started having a whole bunch of animals for our barnyard. She was able to work the molding barn by herself and got good results. There were times when she didn't push the compound in hard enough and it wasn't completely filled.

That resulted in faceless animal forms, but we think she just needs a little bit more practice to get used to using it more. Plus it's so quick and easy to remold an animal, if one didn't come out perfect, it didn't frustrate her to try again. I will say that it was A LOT easier for her to work than the molding sets she has for another well know brand of "doh" you "play" with. I was hoping the Moon Dough wouldn't be as crumbly as it was, but it was relatively easy to pick up. Next time I'll have her play with it directly on our clean floor. That way she won't be dropping it from the table to the floor and I'll only have one place to pick it up from. It gets high reviews from her. She really liked it a lot and quickly had a whole barnyard full of animals to play with.

I wish it came with a bigger playmat, and reusable containers for the Moon Dough to be stored in. They came in baggies, that aren't resealable, and while the compound won't dry out, it is crumbly and needs a sealed container for storage to avoid a big mess.

Over all, it was so nice that ER could use it independently and not need to call me every few seconds for help. I liked how this set provides several options of things to mold and create, the cute details of the molded objects, and how the barn can be used as a prop to play with too. I am already considering purchasing the Pizza Shop for her.

Updated: 10/28/10: My friend MaryAnne at Mama Smiles pointed out that its primary strength is its ability to mold into figures easily. I agree, it is not as useful to make your own shapes, but since ER is able to use it by herself and be successful, that more then makes up for that to me.
Moon Dough is available at Toys "R" Us, Target, Walmat, Kmart, Amazon.com, A.C. Moore, Michaels and e Toys. The Moon Dough Barnyard retails for $19.99.


Disclosure: The Moon Dough Barnyard has been provided for review by Team Mom and Spin Master. This post relates my own personal and unbiased opinion and experiences with the products. Yours may differ.

Thursday, August 26, 2010

A Crafty Soiree is Coming Next Week!

I have a BIG annoucement! I'm teaming up with my friend Malia from Yesterday on Tuesday for a crafty linky party!!! As you all know, I love crafting; it been a major outlet for me. It's my main hobby and I get a lot of enjoyment out of my time playing with paper.

Crafting, or more specifically scrapbooking, was even the main reason I started Katie's Nesting Spot. I wanted some place I could record our day to day life as it was happening. That way, I'd have our memories written down and waiting for me, if and when, I got around to scrapbooking the corresponding pictures. It's been working out great. I love being able to reference a post for my journaling, even if it's been over a year since the event.


I've been wanting to start my own weekly crafting party for quite sometime now because I love joining linky parties, seeing all the projects, and getting a weekly dose of inspiration. I'm so glad Malia suggested we create "A Crafty Soiree" together!

The best part? You can join us at either blog☺ Add your link right here at Katie's Nesting Spot OR at Malia's Yesterday on Tuesday and your link will show up on both blogs. Neat, huh?


We've got great buttons to promote our new craft party, and we hope you'll display them on your blog and spread the word. I'll just love you bunches and bunches and send big {{Hugs}} your way! Please join us next week for the first party. We're looking forward to seeing all your creations!

Crafty Soiree Featured On

We'll each be picking at random three links to feature from the party and of course, we hope when you are, you'll proudly display hour "ribbon award". I know I always love being able to add a new Featured button on my sidebar!

Don't forget to join us NEXT Thursday! I can't wait to see all your crafts, decor, recipes, sewing and organizing tips!


PS: Do you like the buttons I created? They're pretty snazzy aren't they? I used clip art from the Pink Party Decorations Digital Kit, you can find it at House of 3.

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Brown Paper Packages Tied Up with String

I recently sent a little care package to a long time blogging gal pal. As always, I was dreadfully behind when it came to actually mailing it out to her. So I didn't have time to fuss with it like I wanted, but I'm really happy with how the simple packaging turned out.I hand cut the tags out of cream cardstock and then added a swirly stamp in gold ink that I heat embossed. I also inked the edges and embossed them a bit too. Some of the swirls aren't as clean as I'd like, because I am not an expert stamper by any means, but I've decided they give it an artsy homemade feel. Don't you agree? C'mon, humor me☺
She's crafty like me, so I sent her some blank mini books to create with,
A set of alphabet stamps so she can personalize her projects,
And some assorted embellishements to fancy up her creations.
Plus a few books to give her some ideas. A little message explaining each package is on the backside of each tag. I hope she likes it all!

Shared at: Scrappy Saturdays at Scrappy Gifts, Sundae Scoop at I ♥ Naptime, and Weekend Wrap Up at Tatertots and Jello, and It's So Very Creative at It's So Very Cheri.


Tuesday, August 24, 2010


You probably know by now that I love to take pictures! I use them all sorts of ways and I'm always on the look out for new things to do with mine. I just found about a new service that sounds awesome!

At Fracture you can print your digital pictures right onto glass! There's no paper, film or anything involved. Simply ink and glass. That means printing, framing, and mounting have all been combined into one simple process. You upload your photo to FractureMe.com, it's printed on glass, and send it on it's way with everything you need to mount and display. It's a one-stop, complete photo decor solution.
Fractures are very safe: all sharp edges are removed, and they are completely okay to touch and handle.

Fractures are durable: the prints are shatter proof (unlike traditional glass frames), and the images will not fade for years beyond average prints.

Fractures are very practical and elegant: you can use them for any occasion, from Christmas and graduation gifts, to simple "Thank You's".

Fractures are for everyone: from avid photographers to snap happy point-and-shoot lovers, anyone can get Fractured!

Don't they sound cool? I'm especially interested to see how the mounting, that's already attached, works. Plus I think a picture on glass would have a neat translucent quality. I'm hoping that by telling you about Fracture, I'll get a chance to review one and tell you all about it!


Disclosure: I wrote this blog post in response to a TwitterMoms RAMBO alert, making me eligible to get a Fracture picture frame for review. You can learn more about Fracture at http://www.fractureme.com/
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