Fun Friday – All About V-Day!!

Free Valentine's Day Pencil Tag #valentinesday #valentinesdaygift #valentinesdayideas

Wow, did this week fly by for anyone else but me?  Today’s Fun Friday is ALL about Valentine’s Day!!

Do you miss those days when it was just the two of you?  But, that just isn’t the case anymore, now that you have little people running around, who seem to be sapping your romantic flow.  But, you want your guy to know that he is still #1 in your book.  No matter how tired you may be.

Most men are simple.  And, most men don’t really give a hoot about Valentine’s Day.  Even still, you care, so make sure he knows that you do too.  Keep in Mind, that this year Valentine’s Day falls on a Saturday (what a treat). So, you have the whole day to make your love feel special.

Here are a few Quick & Hopefully Not Too Dirty Ideas:

Start with Breakfast — In Bed or Out (your choice)

It doesn’t have to be anything GRAND, you know your guy. Add a Sweet Card, a Love Note, or even an IOU (for later fun).  Running low on time in the morning, consider prepping your guys breakfast the night before.

Breakfast in Bed for Valentine's Day

Babysitter or Not –

Can you get a baby sitter to stay with the kids so you can have some alone time? What works better for your family?  Are you going to hit the movies with your honey during the day, or are you going to make it an official date night and don the heels and flirty dress??  Whatever you do, make sure the plan is put in place long before that weekend.  Remember reservations are nearly impossible to get around this time of year.

Of course, if a Baby Sitter is not an option for you, then you have to either plan V-Day around the kiddies, or include them.  When my oldest daughter was much younger, we both dressed up one year and had dinner with my hubby.  It was super sweet and we all enjoyed sitting at the table together for dinner. She enjoyed being included and making a Valentine for her Daddy.

Here are some fun ideas for sharing V-day with your little ones, that I found around the web.

12 Ways to Celebrate Valentine’s Day with Your Kids

4 Sweet Ways To Celebrate Valentine’s Day with Your Kids

To Dine –

If you are lucky, maybe you are one the of the couples who manage to get time alone, reserve your table far enough in advance, and are dressed to impressed for a Night On the Town.  Leave everything else on the back shelf for the night.  You have pulled off a major coup!!  Make tonight only about YOUR LOVE.  No talk of work, daycare, or diapers.  Relax and Enjoy Each Other.

Every Day is Special with the One You Love, but Valentine’s day should be even SWEETER.

V-Day Stories –

Sad Valentine's Day Story

Funny Valentine's Day Story And, if you got all the way through this post, Good For You!!

So as promised, here is your Free Valentine’s Day Pencil Tag (PDF File) with instructions.  Click to Download and Enjoy!!

Valentine's Day Pencil Tags

How to Capture Memories with a Yearly Family Photo Book?

Capturing Memories with Yearly Photo Books

Four years ago, I decided to start putting together a Yearly Family Photo Book.  The years were going by way too fast, and I wanted to document it . The thing about digital photography in my opinion, is that the memories get stuck either on your SD Card, Your Phone or Your Camera.  And, then the ones that get uploaded only seem to make it as far as Facebook.(Well at least in my case.)

The first two years, I struggled through a year’s worth of pictures, trying to decide which ones were worthy of a spot in our Photo Book.  The process was tedious, and frankly more than annoying. So last year, I decided to try to stream line my process.  Hopefully, it will save you some aggravation should you decide to do this for your family.

1.  Cataloging – At the end of every month, I download all the pictures that are on my various devices.  Then, I take my time and go through them and weed out the duds. Then I save them on my Desktop to a specific folder named for that month.  As I save them, I try to give them names that would inspire captions for the book.

2.  Uploading – After I have completed that, I upload them to Shutterfly and then make sure they go into the My Projects Folder, so that I can come back to it the following month.

3.  The Finished Project – At the end of the year, or realistically at the beginning of the following year.  I give my Saved Project the once over.  For the most part, you should not have much to do at this time.  But, most likely you will want to add some pics of the Holiday Season to complete your project.

Capture Life

Photo Credit: Colorado Senior Life

Note:  I use Shutterfly for pretty much everything photo related, but there are several options out there.  I love Shutterfly specifically, because several times during the year they offer a coupon for a free photo book, and in that case you will most likely only have to pay for shipping.  Unless you are like me and you have so many pics that you go over the allotted page requirement.  But, even still its worth it!!

Do you have pictures that you lost or wished that you had printed?

Shutterfly Evergreen 300x600 - Capture Memories with a Shutterfly Photo Book

Fun Friday – What’s In Your Bag??

Fun Friday Post - What's In Your Bag?

I always find myself intrigued by the many and varied Instagram, and Pinterest posts on “What’s In Your Bag?”  So, just for fun, I thought I would do one as well.

What's In Your Purse - Contents of My Purse


I thought I kept a lot in my bag, or at the very least that my bag was Heavy, but some of you have me beat.  My list is kind of small.

  1. iPhone w/Personalized Case (shhhhh.. don’t tell hubby I have way too many phone cases.)
  2. Business Card Case – Never leave home without it, you never know when you will need to plug your business.
  3. Cosmetic Case – (I’m not a big makeup person, so for me, its just Lip Gloss, Eye Liner, Mascara and More Lip Gloss.)
  4. iPad (It’s like an extension of my arm, when I am not at home.)
  5. Glasses(cause, I am pretty blind), and my Favorite Pen that the Hubby Got Me in Year One.  And, even though it’s not pictured here, I normally carry a spare pen, because I don’t share my special one with anyone.  And, baby girl’s Epipen Jr. (She has severe food allergies.)

NOTE:  After I wrote this, I thought I should go back and add that this is what is in my bag, after I pull out all the receipt, spare coupons, and, when I am traveling alone.  With kids in tow, there is normally 2 mini packs of  Kleenex, Hand Wipes, Candy, and Occasionally Some Bags of Chips, or some other On The Go Snack.  We are passed the age of Diaper Bags, so my Bag tends to double at times.  Yeah me…

OK, so I shared.  Now, it’t your turn.  What’s in your Bag?  Link Up Below.  I can’t wait to see what special things you have in your bag.

Not Just Another Three Day Weekend – MLK Jr. Day

Dr. Martin Luther King Jr and his lovely wife, Coretta Scott-King

Photo Credit:

As I planned out my blog post for the month of January, this particular blog post was at the top of my list.  But, I must admit that I struggled with exactly what I would say.  I wanted to make sure that what I wrote truly conveyed my feelings and did the subject justice.

As a child being introduced to Black History, I remember being in awe of Dr. King, his message, his diplomacy, his grace in the face of adverse conditions, and mostly his commitment. I devoured anything that I could find and read about the Civil RIghts Movement and not just about Dr. King, but Marcus Garvey, Malcolm X, John F. Kennedy Jr., Lyndon B. Johnson (to name a few). I have always felt connected to Dr. King on a personal level.  Because, his legacy to me, lies in more than just the civil rights movement.  It lies in the personal struggle and sacrifice, that both he and his family made for the future of a nation. I am reverenced by the very thought of it.

As a mother, and a wife, I can’t quite wrap my head around the bravery that it must have taken for Dr. King and others who participated in the movement, to leave their families and walk straight into what could ultimately be their last day on earth, over and over again.  I cant imagine the state of sheer panic, that their families felt everyday. But, I assume that it would be something similar to what military spouses or the families of first responders experience.  I think that is why I have always had such respect for Coretta Scott King and others widowed by the cause, because I can only imagine the magnitude of loss that they suffered in the name of FREEDOM.

Martin Luther King Jr. Day - Not Just Another Three Day Weekend

Photo Credits:

I often use the word humbled to describe the emotion that washes over me, when I take the time to sit down and fully grasp the fact that so many died so that we could LIVE.  If I am being totally honest, I am not sure that I could have made that kind of sacrifice, for people that I didn’t know, for people who didn’t support me, or even for people who were angered by the fact that I wanted more for them.  And, it always propels me toward the fact that their behavior can be described as nothing less than Christ-like.  Not because they were perfect or without sin or flaws.  But, because they, like Christ, died so that we could  have life and have it more abundantly.(John 10:10)  What an Awesome Gift!!

So, when I think of MLK Jr. Day, I don’t think of it as just anther 3 day weekend. I don’t think of it as being just about ONE man and his legacy and his dream. But, for me, it’s a day to celebrate, acknowledge and honor the sacrifices that were made in the name of Progressive Change.  What does Martin Luther King Jr. Day mean to you?

Martin Luther King Junior Quote - Letter from Birmingham Jail

A Facelift & lots of New Additions to The Blog



I am still riding the Start of a New Year Wave over here.  The good thing about that is that it serves as a kind of adrenaline, ideas have just been pouring out of my brain, and on to the pages of my planner.  I have been working hard at giving the page a cleaner, streamlined look.  And, I am happy with the outcome, though I am sure you know me, I don’t stay satisfied for long so I am sure that the changes will keep coming.  At the end of last year we announced that we were adding the option to Subscribe to the Stage Presents Blog for exclusive material. This year we plan to add many and varied items to that section, starting with Free Printables, that you can use to decorate your home, create photo gallery walls, and even use on your devices and or desktop.  I am sure that the list will expand as the year goes on and as it does, we will let you know.

In addition to that, I plan to add a lot of great content to the blog this year, as well as sharing information about Our Etsy Store, our design process, and our little corner of the world.

To give you just a glimpse of the kind of items that you can expect to get access to after Subscribing to the Blog.  Enjoy this free download!! Right Click and Save.


Please keep in mind this Printable is for personal use only. Personal use means non-commercial use of the Media for display on personal websites and computers, or making image prints or video copies for personal use. The Media may not be used in any way whatsoever in which you charge money, collect fees, or receive any form of remuneration. The Media may not be used in advertising. The Media may not be resold.

10 Things you already know… but need to be reminded of.

  1. 10 Things You Already Know But Need to Be Reminded Of -


  1. Your success is not contingent on anyone else’s failure.  And, if it is you may need to reevaluate what motivates you.
  2. Everything is not black and white, but usually wrong is wrong and right is right.  And, no amount of lying to yourself or other’s will change that.
  3. Over thinking really can ruin things, relationships, friendships and opportunities.  Some times it really isn’t that deep.
  4. If you think it is about you?  Ask.  If you don’t understand.  Ask.  Making up your own answers, and drawing your own ill-advised conclusions, only leads to confusion and mayhem.
  5. If you work at it, (Build it, it will come.)  All goals CAN be achieved with hard work and continuous effort.
  6. Half the effort yields half the results.  My Favorite line from Sweet Home Alabama, “You can’t ride two horses with one ass, sugar bean.” – Watch Clip
  7. Be as kind and forgiving to yourself as you would be to the ones you love.  Learn how to treat yourself, define your worth, then teach a boot camp to help other’s catch on.
  8. It wont always go as planned.  In my case, it frequently does not.  Redirect the Sails and learn how to keep the ship afloat in present conditions.
  9. In times of hardship, struggle and tribulations your faith WILL be tested.  Stand strong.  Bend don’t break and lean on the only true Author and Finisher.
  10. This to shall pass.  Whatever it is.  (Though I’m sure it wont feel like that in the eye of the storm.)  It will end.  Remember your own track record for surviving what seems like impossible situations.






Tips for getting back on track after Winter Break….

Are you struggling with getting things back on track after the Break?  Here are some quick and easy steps to get your Over The Hump!!

As much as I love Christmas, I for one am elated that Christmas Break is over.  So much so, that I got up this morning and got my little one ready for school.  Got dressed and drove all the way to school, only to realize…  today was a Teacher Work Day and not the kid’s first day back at school.  Thankfully, I caught on before I dropped her off.  So, I laughed it off, but to be honest, when I got back in I sat on the sofa for a good 30 minutes talking myself out of wanting to lay on my back, kick my feet up and have a full blown temper tantrum. Ugh!! As you can see, I am still struggling with things not going as I PLAN.  After deciding that no real purpose would be served by that, I moved on with my day.  *It was like having your Mind and your Mouth set on that last piece of chocolate you have stashed in the refrigerator and when you reach in to get it… you realize that someone got to it first. (Even after you hid it soo expertly.)  This Mommy really was looking forward to some peace and quiet.  I just knew that today was going to be that day.  So, I regrouped, and rescheduled.

Getting Back On Track After Christmas Break -

  1. Start your day out with purpose.  For me that means reading my Devotion and prayer.  For you, that may be meditation and clearing your head.
  2. Regroup and Evaluate. Where were you before your vacation?  Where do you want to pick up?  Are you just jumping back in or have your priorities changed?
  3. Create a Rolling To Do List.  Over the next 30 days, what are your Goals and Objectives?  Separate the Business from the Personal.  I am a list maker.  So you best believe, I have two separate lists going at all times.  I never realized the beauty of a Rolling To Do List, until I had to plan the days of others, as well as my own. Check out this article CBS published on how they keep you organized and productive.   As much as I hate to say it, whatever you don’t get done today, will get done tomorrow (unless your have a deadline in place).
  4. Create a Weekly List.  Prioritize. Decide What is of the Utmost Importance and start crossing off each item as you go.
  5. Lastly, Work Your Plan and Breathe.  What will be… will be.

Go Confidently in the Direction of Your Dreams.  Live the Life you have imagined – Henry Thoreau