Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Talented Tuesday...featuring MOMS!

Hello friends! Today I have a very special mom who has taken her idea and has made it pretty BIG!!! So exciting to see a mom like you and me come up with a practical idea and make it a successful business. I am sure you have seen these around and if you haven't then you're in for a treat! Not only am I able to share with you this mom's talent, but she has been VERY generous with us and is hosting our very first EVER Giveaway on this blog!!! I am so excited for this giveaway. The rules are at the bottom of this post and I hope you all enjoy and become a part of it! But first, let me introduce to you Vicky Haas McQuoid of Pill0roo!

What inspires you most with creating?
My kids inspire me. I created the first Pilloroo over a decade ago. I was leaving my nephew Jacob’s house. I had just been playing Army men with him on the floor in his room. He was 4 and a half and just the cutest rough and tumble little guy. I needed to get him a Christmas present and I thought – a pillow with his own Secret Hiding Spot for his Army men. I loved the idea that it would be something to comfort him, and he loved that he was the only one who knew what was in his Pillow. Christmas morning it was a huge hit!

What are your favorite pieces you've created and why?
We have a journal pillow that comes in a beautiful Pilloroo with a bow. It’s such a wonderful gift for girls. I’ve had moms purchase them so they can write back and forth with their daughters. Mom writes a letter and the then the daughter responds. It’s a great experience, and I think it will be a wonderful keepsake as well.

How do you balance family/kids, work and everything else?
At times it is tough to balance family and the business. Sometimes I feel like Pilloroo is my fourth child and the most needy. <: I am constantly reminding myself that my children and my husband are my most important priorities. I am getting better at scheduling times for Pilloroo and just feeling good about what I can get done in that window of time.

What do you want to accomplish with your business?
I just want to make kids and our customers happy. Nothing makes me feel better than seeing a person open the zipper and have a really good chuckle about what is hidden in the pocket.
We have recently done some events that have benefitted the Marjaree Mason center in town – our local center for victims of domestic violence. I would like to see our company get bigger so that our donations can be bigger.

Do you have any new creations in the works? 
If so, what can shoppers expect to see from you soon?
Yes. We have a teen and preteen line in development that we are really excited about. We are also working with an author from Beverly Hills on a Pilloroo with a book and a plush character from the book. It would be a great gift and wonderful nap set.

Here's how to enter for a chance to win a Pilloroo of your choice! She is even letting you pick the color!!! Leave a separate comment for every Step you complete on this blog letting me know you completed each step. If your comment is not left below on this blog I do not know who to put in the drawing!
STEP 1: 
Go over and "Like" Pilloroo on Facebook and leave a comment telling which Pilloroo you would want. (post a comment below on this blog telling me you did that)

STEP 2: 
Become a follower of this Blog. (post a comment below on this blog telling me you did that)

Go over and "Like" Sugarpalooza on Facebook. (post a comment below on this blog telling me you did that)

That's it! Three chances to be entered in a random drawing for a FREE Pilloroo of your choice!!! 
Winner will be announced on Tuesday May 3rd...PLEASE make sure you leave your email so that we can get a hold of you if you win! Good Luck!!! 

Saturday, April 23, 2011

Everyday Nina

I have been taping a few of these short meal videos for my church. Hope you enjoy this one.

Friday, April 22, 2011

8486-Dedicated to sissy, thanks for the inspiration.

It's been a week since my surgery (Thyrodectamy) and I have to give praise to the Lord for keeping me healthy, no cancer, and functioning pretty good with my new medication. During the time I checked into the hospital till right now, I have experienced a lot of different emotions. A little fear being checked into the hospital and laying on that surgical bed knowing what these doctors, also known as humans who can and do make mistakes, are about to perform. Weak; after waking up from surgery. Foggy; as I am pumping in morpheme to not feel pain. Tired, from all that morpheme. Sick, from all that morpheme. Love, from all my friends who came to the hospital, who sent flowers, who text, sent meals, and blessed from my family.
(the green beard I woke up with, it took a couple of days of scrubbing for that to come off!)

Sadness when not feeling like me, and secure as I went to recover at 8486. That number will forever have meaning to me. It's where I grew up, it's where I learned to be me. Where I would enter through the garage into a kitchen always smelling of garlic and olive oil and lots of noise. A passionate mother, and strong father, and crazy siblings! That's where I went to spend a few days after surgery to escape the loudness of my own home. I spent two days and nights in the 5th bedroom as we call it. And it's funny how no matter who came by, everyone sat in the 5th bedroom of this 3200 sq ft home. One night there were 7 people and an infant, sitting on top of each other with Greek TV blaring and everyone just being together. That 5th bedroom is where John and I lived for 6 month when building our home. It's the bedroom where all the kids used to have all their toys when visiting Papou and Yiayia. It's the hub of the house, the hub of my healing. My dad checked on me at night and had breakfast served for me in the morning. He was so happy to take care of me. I can always count on that man, always. My dad's arms is where I always can find my peace, my healing. Just like our Heavenly father, my dad exhibits his characteristics. 8486, Big Love, Big rooms, Big that place.
The fifth bedroom, this is what I got to enjoy. You can't see it to clearly, but my dad has a big grin on his face as he enjoys the fullness of his home:)
(From left: Annabanana-thanks for being there for me the entire week, and my whole life. Aleko-always on the boob dude! Andreas-welcome to the craziness. George-loves me like a daughter, would do anything if I asked. Popoula-my second mother, always there for me, best friend to my mother, I love that. I love you! Stella-my mom, the best, taught me so much, unfair. Dad-my hero, my strength, the man who taught me I'm worth it and so much more! Love you more!)


Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Talented Tuesday...featuring MOMS!

Sorry for posting so late in the day, but today I have a very special mom to share with you. Her name is Karen and she has started Oh Sew Sweet. Whatever
she makes goes directly for providing virtual baby showers for expecting spouses of our deployed military. Please take some time to get to know Karen with Oh Sew Sweet and visit her website!
Here is a link to some pictures of what she does and of herself and her two kids! Thanks for sharing Karen!

What are your favorite pieces you've created and why?
I have so many favorites!  I love my keepsake silverware.  The sets are such a unique and fun keepsake gift to give and each is personalized with the receiver’s name and favorite colors.  My military bibs are recent additions to my collection and are fun to make.  They bring back fond memories of my days as an Air Force brat and were inspired by my niece and nephews that are current USMC brats.  Of course my bows and headbands are a never ending opportunity to try new colors and materials to match my daughter’s (and her friends) outfits and uniforms.


How do you balance family/kids, work and everything else?

I have been a night owl my entire life. I do my best work after everyone is tucked in and the house is nice and quiet. After a busy day of being a mom, wife, school volunteer and part-time Weight Watcher employee, I look forward to my quiet time late at night!  My family comes first, my craft business is just icing on my cake.
What do you want to accomplish with your business?
Proceeds from my sales help support my passion for providing virtual baby showers for 
expecting spouses of our deployed military. I am the Fallen Family team leader that 
provides support for the expecting spouses (or those with children age two and 
younger) of our military heroes that have died while serving our great nation. You can 
visit us at or on FaceBook at Soldiers Angels Operation Top Knot 
(official) for more information (or contact me directly).  My business will not make me rich monetarily, but the friendships I have gained and the lives I have touched with my gifts, make me the richest girl in the world!

Do you have any new creations in the works? If so, what can shoppers expect to see from you soon?
Personalized pillows!  I can’t wait to try my new idea that I have for the son of one of our Fallen Soldiers.  I told my daughter about it and she wants one for herself and her BFF, but said she can wait until after the little boy gets his first.
I am learning the ins-n-outs of creating my own website.  I am experiencing the fun and headaches that come with doing it yourself.  Of course, the creativity I get to use to make it my own far outweigh the hassle of doing it yourself!  It is just another fun way to express my love for sewing and sharing my crafts with others.  You can find me at or my etsy shop at or on FaceBook at  Oh Sew Sweet.  There are several variations of Oh Sew Sweet on FaceBook, but I would really appreciate you “liking” my site, the one with the cute military bib as the profile picture!

Friday, April 15, 2011

Birthday Fridays

Good morning one and all! I have a really cute Fairy party to share with you today. One I did at Carmel Kids over this past weekend. The birthday girl LOVES Fairys and we rolled with the theme. We made flower Pens as the craft, hair and make-up, put on our wings, mom bought hair wreaths and wands to add to their costumes.  We had a Fairy candy bar and Fairy cupcakes inpired from They featured a Fairy party and we had to re-create it! We had a prfessional photographer, which makes all the difference when capturing the moment! So here is a collage, I will have more pictures to come! But do take a look and all the details, if you can! Get ispired!

Flowers on top of their pens with a ton of glitter! It got messy!!!

I just love the sparkle from the Toule and the sparkle from the fairys and the cotton Candy tree!!!

The cupcake liners are from Sur La Table and the toppers from SugarPalooza

O just love the cupcake toppers! Sparkle fairys...

LOVE LOVE LOVE these cupcakes and their toppers!

Candy Jar labels designed by SugarPalooza

A Fairy Candy Bar

Books for all

Butterflies attached to all Candy Labels

The wings avaialable at Carmel Kids

Birthday Girls Chalkboard


The pretty Birthday Girl!

Craft Table

Craft Table

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Talented Tuesday...featuring MOMS!

Okay, so sorry, but my original feature today did not come through, so I am featuring my little business called SugarPalooza! I do not mean to feature myself, but I didn't want to break our streak of talented moms, so here I go! Welcome to SugarPalooza, a Candy Buffet/Events and LabelPalooza, where all customized labels come together with party details to complete celebrations! From kid's birthdays, to adult events, to now local school Proms...the ideas are endless and I am having a blast putting together ideas from different clients! I have been busy! Thank the Lord! And I have been enjoying every minute! SugarPalooza makes cookie party favors, cake pops, goodie bags, and candy buffets! LabelPalooza makes the labels to match all of this fun stuff! And now I work at Carmel Kids and do all the Birthday Parties offering customized details for all!!!!

What inspires you most with creating?
Color and the personality of my clients! I try to fins what they love and go with it! Love to match a passion or color scheme of different personalities!
What are your favorite pieces you've created and why?
One of my favorite Candy Buffets would have to be the sweet sixteen Turqoise and hot pink! I loved the Doughnut Kabobs and the bright touch of yellow added throughout! And the backdrops was one of my favorites!

How do you balance family/kids, work and everything else?
It's always a struggle, and my house is NOT always clean, but you just do! And I always count to 10...slowly!!!

What do you want to accomplish with your business?
I want to decorate and organize parties till I die! I want to plan big and small events and see the joy from guests and clients! I love seeing the joy from people who see their party and are just speechless!!!

Do you have any new creations in the works? If so, what can shoppers expect to see from you soon?
I am working on an under the sea theme for a prom and some summer after school events! I am working with bright colors and fun! Check out my Facebook!

Barbie Party

Purple and Pink

Purple and Pink

Open House

Flip Flop Buffet

7 Year Old Bday Party

CHS Formal

40th Birthday


Sweet Sixteen
My husband's and Bro-in law's 40th

Custom Labels

Doughnut Kabobs

Custom Lollipop Boxes

Cake Pops

Saint Patrick Day Treats

Cupcake Toppers

Custom Banners

Cupcake Toppers

Created a buffet for Flip Flops at a local boutique

Custom signs

Napkins wrapper

K-class Valentine's Buffet

Onesie cookies

Purse and dress favors