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Easter Art

Hey everyone it has been a while since I have posted anything. Once again Motherhood and school has consumed all of my time!

I just thought I would share a little arts and crafts product Kenzy and I completed yesterday.

I seen the Easter Bunny idea circulating on my Facebook news feed so thought we would give it a try.

Here are the materials we used:

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  1. Cotton balls
  2. 1 Paper plate
  3. 2 photos of Kenzy ( 1 photo would work just as well)
  4. Glue
  5. Construction paper (which I pre-cut, please excuse the uneven mess)
  6.  Makers ( this was if we did not use the photos)

 

  1. So I went ahead and pre-cut the body and ears also I glued the pictures to the paper plate. 2. Next, I  glued the body and ears to the the plate. ( Older children probably would not have a problem doing that own their own.) 3. I placed glue on the body 1st and gave her hand full of cotton balls, which she basically threw at the bunny. We did this until the body, face and ears were pretty much covered!

 

Creating….

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The Kenzy Bunny!

This was a fun little activity which took me about 15 minutes to  prep and about an 45 minutes to an hour of fun!

 

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Just in case you werre wondering what happened with the Marker….. Here ya go! 🙂

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Brand Representation

Christmas Shoot

Recently my job held an incentive and I actually won a Nikon 300! This was a PERFECT win for me, because I am trying to improve on the quality of photos I take of my daughter.

Our 1st photo-shoot was Christmas themed.

One of the things you will notice in these photos are location. I much rather take outdoor photos because I can be more creative and open with the background. However it was pretty chilly around the time of this shoot so I had to make do with what was available to me.

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Started off with Kenzy hiding her face from me!
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Until she decided to no longer hide her face from me! 🙂
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She had a little dance party of her own!
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She could not mask her excitement.
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Eventually she made her way into the tissue paper!
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Yea she thought that was cool!
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Soon she became tired of taking photos & I had to steal one when I could!
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But with smiles like this, she can take pictures anywhere she would like to! 🙂
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This photo isn’t from the same shoot, but I couldn’t resist!!

In relation to Brand Representation the quality of these photos are pretty good. What could be better and what many shops require are white or 1 color backgrounds that do not take away from the image. There are some shops who love outside photos with the background of trees or even the playground. As long as it doesn’t take from the photo and the product it will usually qualify for a good Brand Rep photo. One other thing to look out for are shadows. Shadows can be distracting. There are maybe 2 or 3 photos here with obvious shadows.

 

Instagram Profiles:

  • @Kenzy.Michelle (Brand Rep account)
  • @Preloved_goodies_kmw (Preloved items account)
  • @chellyyyyyann_ (My personal account)

 

*Photographs are taken by me unless stated other wise. Please do not re-post pictures without permission.
Brand Representation

1st Instagram Giveaway

Last week I started a new subject/topic: Brand Representation. I mentioned how we started and one of the things I learned/picked up so far.

Check it out here.

Today I thought I would speak on Giveaways! Everybody LOVES giveaways, right?! These giveaway can be done many different ways; some are group giveaways, some require creative thinking while others simply require a little participation.

It was about 3 or 4 week after I created Kenzy’s Instagram I seen a giveaway post for 1 of the shops I recently started following. (At this time a generally followed shops that specialized in headwraps and big bows, because that was my main interest at the time!) The rules for this shop was very simple: follow, repost the selected picture and tag people. Simple enough! After about a week and hundreds of entries we were contacted via Instagram Direct message with the information that we won.

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photo original taken by shop owner: prettybowtiquedotcom

I was pretty excited about winning a free item!

Once I received the headband (which took all of 3 days) I was head over heels in love the with quality! I took a million not so “Brand Rep Worthy” photos…but I was still in the learning stages.

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1st photo in the headband. We were heading to my little brothers basketball game!
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Its safe to say she did not really enjoy the headwraps/topknots.

Since the giveaway I have made a few additional purchases from this shop. I absolutely love the quality of her headbands/wraps/topknots. They do not leave marks, they are stretchy and of course adorable!

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One of the topknots I purchased.

Since this giveaway I have participated in a few others, not many. I have won a thing or too which is great & the point.

But I love sharing this experience with this shop, because she presented the best customer service even though I was not a paying customer! She was friendly and as I mentioned before, I received my prize in no time. All good qualities of a Great Small Shop!

 

Instagram Profiles:

  • @Kenzy.Michelle (Brand Rep account)
  • @Preloved_goodies_kmw (Preloved items account)
  • @chellyyyyyann_ (My personal account)
*Photographs are taken by me unless stated other wise. Please do not re-post pictures without permission.

 

Brand Representation

Instagram Community

When Kenzy was about 3 months I stumbled across the IG (Instagram) community. I noticed that there was a growing market for Brand Representation for Small Shops. Some of these Shops are based only on Instagram; some are based on Etsy/Facebook (also other social media sites) and some have multiple advertising/selling platforms.

After discovering this “New and Exciting World,” I quickly wanted to be apart of it with my daughter. I knew absolutely nothing about being a Brand Rep starting out. I wasn’t familiar with the expectations; I didn’t know how much time and effort was needed to be apart of this community! (I am by no means a professional at this time; however, I have a better understanding. I have learned a lot over the past year.) One of the things I love the most is how positive the IG community can be! There is a lot if support in this community, whether it be support of the Shops or support of the children.

I became apart of this community because of the Small Shop approach. I love the idea of helping someone grow and work towards achieving their dreams and at the same time styling my baby to perfection; But I would like to say that we also support larger corporations!

I decided to share this part of our lives on this blog to provide information. I would like to share what I have learned & continue to learn (the do’s and dont’s); I want to share these amazing shops (because there are many) & of course photos of Kenzy!

Stay Tuned ….

 

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This photo was taken about a year ago, the “starting out period”. Kenzy was about 4 months at this time. Outfit is Ralph Lauren from Marshall’s!

There is nothing wrong with collage photos, but many shops/companies prefer Brand Reps avoid these types of pictures when modeling product.

Certain shops/companies have their own approach and specific things that they are looking for. So while this photo structure may not appeal to some it may be exactly what other company are looking for!

Instagram Profiles:

  • @Kenzy.Michelle (Brand Rep account)
  • @Preloved_goodies_kmw (Preloved items account)
  • @chellyyyyyann_ (My personal account)
*Photographs are taken by me unless stated other wise. Please do not re-post pictures without permission.
portfolio

The Cabin

Creative writing is still very difficult for me, but I appreciate these challenges. Writing Challenge #2, click HERE to participate!

Every morning around this time of the year, for about 4 weeks, I would wake up to the most beautiful smell: Pumpkin Marshmallow. The sweet-smelling aroma swiftly engulfed the cramped cabin where my family and I stayed during the Holidays. The scent was not overbearing, it provided just the right amount of warmth needed for those chilly November mornings! The sound of pots and pans raddling and clanking in the kitchen was just a little reminder that Thanksgiving was around the corner.

 

Mother loved Thanksgiving; it was the only time of the year that all the family came to town and enjoyed each other’s company. The holiday visit usually lasted about 2 weeks; once the it ended everyone quickly returned to their busy eventful lives in the big city! Everyone tried to stay in touch the first few weeks after Thanksgiving, but generally that didn’t last! It would go back to just being Mother, Dad, and the twins after the Holidays. The twins are Lily and Kyle; my family adopted them when they were about 6 months old. They are actually blood cousins, but according to documentation and family bond they are my younger siblings! In total Mother and Father shared 6 children: the Twins, Mark, Cassie, Paula and Myself!

 

I usually came to town a few days early to help with the Thanksgiving preparations. The week leading up to Thanksgiving we were required to get everything in the house impeccable, as Mother and Father prepped the food. Mother wanted floors and walls scrubbed spotless,  Fall decorations flowing throughout the house and the fireplace equip to burn chips of wood all week long. The house remained very busy and smelled delightful, between scented candles and home cooked greatness. As each day passed everyone’s excitement grew greater. The anticipation became almost unbearable the day before Thanksgiving Eve. This was also the day for the final touches on the menu and last minute cleaning sprees!

 

On the day before Thanksgiving, Family would start to arrive at all times of the day. Some would bring dishes of dessert and others would bring the liquid inspiration, not that anyone needed it. The men would gather in the den to watch sports while trying to smoke Cuban Cigars on the hush; Father would open windows hoping to air out the smell but it never worked! Aunt Francis would bring Christmas sweaters that she was able to weave together on her own. She was very good at what she did, but those sweaters were not always appealing. Every year she would request a picture of everyone in their sweater and it eventually became a Christmas card. Then there was Cousin Billy and Cousin Frank, they are brothers and I believe my 2nd or 3rd cousins; they always seemed to have a “new date” or “new friend” every Thanksgiving. It’s like those two were allergic to settling down.

 

Each year it seemed like our family grew; everyone was branching out and starting families within our already large Family. The cabin was always so full of laughter and love during these days. We all would sit and talk for hours about former memories and share outrageously embarrassing stories. Mother would always find a way to sneak in her photo albums; she mainly went for the same one every year. This photo album as outlined in the shiniest silver you would have even seen & if it was tilted in the correct position the reflection of light would allow the pages to shimmer. It was a very beautiful album. The album contained baby photos of my siblings and myself. Every year we created new traditions and even revisited old ones. Every year we argued, laughed till we cried and cried until we laughed.

 

*……..*

 

It has been a long while since I experienced a Thanksgiving so full of joy. Once Father became sick the holidays became dull and the laughter was no longer present.

 

He fought his battle as long as he could; but after 2 years of fighting it was understandable that he was tired. Mother took his passing very hard; she began to give up on life herself it seemed. The Twins moved out and off to college right before Fathers passing, so it was just Mother- alone. I asked Mother to stay with me because she didn’t need to be alone, but she felt closer to him at the cabin.

 

Days would go by before she returned any of my calls. Each time I talked to her she sounded more lost than before. I wanted to help her but I didn’t know if I could. She lost her life partner, the man she loved since the 8th grade. How could I possibly provide her with the right words and support to get her through this?

 

Each day grew harder; instead of healing I felt my Mother was withering away. Eventually she refused to leave the cabin at all. She refused to eat and take care of herself in any way. So I finally decided to move back with her. This decision shocked many of my friends; they didn’t understand why my older siblings did not volunteer to take care of our Mother. I tried to explain that everyone had children and families their own; to pick up everything and move thousands of miles would be unfair and unrealistic for them. However, it was just me. I lived alone. I dropped out of college shortly after father was diagnosed.  All I did was work a dead-end job and attend night clubs!  I felt as if my life was going nowhere fast and I needed to be with my Mother! I needed to add purpose and substance to my life again.

 

I did not realize until I packed up and moved with my Mother that I was also still in pain. I had not completely come to terms with my Father departing this earth when he did. I ignored what I was feeling for a long time.That was no longer an option when I moved back to the cabin.

 

My mother had not left the cabin for many months; she felt closer to Father there and I could understand that. We shared so many good memories in that place.

 

My 1st night back was uneasy; I heard my Fathers voice bouncing off the walls! I could feel his presence. I knew it was my emotions and completely in my head, but it felt so real! The smell of his cologne lingered through the cabin that night. I thought Mother may have sprayed it, so I walked down the hallway to her room. She was in a deep sleep. It looked as if the sleeping pills I gave her did the trick. As I looked around the room I didn’t see any of Fathers belongings. It looked like the room they shared and been wiped clean that he was ever there. I did not understand how Mother could get rid of all his things but still sulk in grief for his passing.

 

I grabbed for the handle on the door to exit my Mothers room, as I tried twisting the handle the door seemed jammed. I tried my best to wiggle it open as quietly as possible; I didn’t want to wake Mother. As I tried pulling the door handle for a 4th time I felt a cold chill down my spine; I spun around quickly and caught a glimpse of this dull grayish light. I shut my eyes quickly; I kept telling myself I was tired and just needed to get some sleep. My gut was saying something different! I turned back to the jammed door and heard a unclear whisper. I could not make out what was said. I thought it was my mother so I called out to her, but there was no reply. I assumed she was talking in her sleep.  As I redirect my attention back to the door I heard that faint whisper again, but this time I can make out what was said.

“You cannot leave me! We are a family! I will never let you go!”

In that moment I understood why Mother would never leave this cabin.

He would not let her!

Michelle A. 11/23/15

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Morning Time in My House is like…

I am dreaming, I am dreaming, I am …… awake!

My day generally starts between 5am-6:15 every morning. I do not wake to the sunlight shinning through the blinds or the smell of coffee and breakfast cooking; I wake to the screaming of a toddler, a foot to the side or maybe slobber on my face.

Oh how I love my mornings.

I would not trade my mornings with my toddler. Some mornings she is all fun and games other mornings she is little Miss Attitude. Some mornings getting dressed is a breeze & others I have to chase her around the house while she screams.

Oh how I love my mornings.

Some morning she will just lay with me and watch a little TV and then there are most mornings when she rather not!

Oh how  I love my mornings.

“Kennnnzzyyyy….where are you?

Hey, get down from there!

No, No! You shouldn’t do that baby.

Lets put on your shirt!

You wanna sing Row your boat? ABCs?

I love you. You love me. We’re a happy family…. Hey I thought we were singing!”

Haha…Oh how I love my mornings.

About the only thing I am 100% sure Kenzy will enjoy doing in the morning, is brushing her teeth. (Its the most adorable sight to see.) She walks in the bathroom and says “Ahhh Ahhh.” I automatically know what she wants, but I try and get her to tell me. (We are working on the word ‘Teeth’.) Once I put toothpaste on her toothbrush she is in concentration mode! She doesn’t really ‘brush’ her teeth; its more of her eating the toothpaste than anything else! I try and get her to copy me, but for some reasons when she see’s my toothbrush she thinks we need to swap!

Oh how I love my mornings.

Those who actually know me understand that I have never been a morning person. I would wake up in just enough time to get dressed and make it to work/school and the weekends I slept until at least 11; 12pm if I was lucky. I had no desire to wake up early.

But I do not miss that! I thought I would miss sleeping in and my silent mornings, but I do not! My mornings feel much more complete these days, much more eventful! Yes I am tired 99.99% of the time. Yes sometimes I wanna ship her to her grandparents house on some occasions, but I honestly would not trade my mornings for anything!

Oh how I Love my mornings with my Daughter!

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