Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Left you hanging

It has come to my attention that I did not follow through on my promise to alert you when the new blog is ready.

Well.

IT'S READY!

Go check it out at www.andbabiesdontkeep.com
Start at the beginning to see the how and why.
Then stay a while and share!

Wednesday, May 29, 2013

We're moving!

Oh my gosh, don't freak out!

By WE I obviously mean ME, and by MOVING I obviously mean to a new website.

Was that not clear? I apologize.

I've been thinking about it for a while now. Moving to a new site is kind of a pain, but here's how I got there.


1. We outgrew the title.
We haven't been a Table for 3 for like, 2 years. That drives me nuts. Enough said.


2. I'm starting to outgrow the content.
I started Table for 3 as a way to share baby stuff with my family. My family didn't actually read it for like, the first several months. They finally caught on. Apparently, if you call and say "Did you read my blog?" enough, the guilt takes over.

So the original intent was to write about our family, for my friends and family. And that was great. But writing became something else for me. A really helpful outlet. I wanted to take it more seriously and I did, and I now I find myself writing fewer updates on the kids and more lifestyle and heart stuff. I want to keep going in that direction but sometimes I feel limited by the original purpose for this blog. So I want to start fresh.


3. I want to take blogging more seriously.
I would never have felt comfortable saying that 2 years ago. I'll share more about this new blog soon, but I will say that it'll be more directed. I'm thinking more strategically, starting with a handful of topics in mind. I want to keep going after sponsored content posts through the networks I'm part of (BlogHer, Pollinate Media, Clever Girls Collective). I want to do more reviews and giveaways. I want to grow this little thing.

Baby Bloggers


I'm going to keep this space true to it's original purpose. I probably won't post as much but when I do, it'll be more about the kids and less about the other stuff. Feel free to stick around, but definitely stop by the new place.

I'll let you know when it's ready!

Monday, May 27, 2013

Congrats!

Congrats to Melanie M., winner of the Allie Mac giveaway!

If you entered and didn't win, make sure you "liked" Allie Mac on Facebook
You'll stay up-to-date on sales and other giveaways.

Happy Memorial Day!


Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Faith and a Big Orange Tractor {An Incredible Allie Mac Giveaway!}

You guys! I'm so excited to share this with you. My friend Allison (she, of Allie Mac Designs fame) is giving away a $75 credit to her shop! Her pieces are beautiful, exactly the kind of thing I know you'll want to wear. 

But wait there's more!

She's also debuting a new design. 
The Brandon!

Before I let her tell you a little about how and why she started Allie Mac, I want to you a little about her myself. One of the first times we really hung out was for a girls' night organized by a mutual friend. Over the course of the night, Allison told us some of her story. She's the kind of person who makes you feel instantly comfortable because she's so genuine herself. She had us cracking up one minute and nodding our heads in somber agreement the next. She's someone who always makes me want to show my real, no matter how unlovely it is.We all need a friend like her!

I asked Allison to tell us a little about Allie Mac, and this is what she said. I know you'll love her and her designs as much as I do! Then check out The Brandon, and enter to win the $75 credit at the end!



******

How did you get started with Allie Mac? 

My baby girl, Lawson, started kindergarten in August of 2011. I knew that I wanted to find some part time work because both our children would be in school.  But, the thought of not being home when they got home from school or having to work on the weekend made me look at things I could possibly do from home. 

Pinterest came along and I said to myself, "Maybe I could teach myself to sew?"  I started researching sewing.  Things I would like to make.  Then I traveled to Germany to help bring my little sis and her new baby boy back to the US while her husband was in Afghanistan. My sister said she'd show me how to do the bobbin and then I'd know what I needed to. She knows me well enough that sometimes I need that extra push!

Learning how to do the bobbin left me expecting myself to be a Harvard graduate of sewing! I am a driven and determined lady. And I love that The Lord has made me this way.  Frustrating at times, but I really felt from the beginning that He was calling me to step out of my comfort zone and take a chance. Have faith.

I started to sew.  I made Lawson a few dresses and well let's just say she is pretty opinionated herself! So I decided to make something for myself.  Then for a friend. And then another friend.  I had so many of my friends come along side me and encourage me to start a business. 
My grandmother Bea died in April 2012. You can read about that here. Literally on the way back to South Carolina, I thought, if Bea could drive a big orange tractor then I can do this. Through Him.  And this is how Allie Mac began.

What sort of courage did it take to decide to start a business?

A few years ago I stepped out of my comfort zone and started graduate school.  It was not God’s plan for me and I had to quit.  I could not do it.  And that led to fear of trying anything new.  This was unusual for me.  I truly believe the Lord used those years to whisper Truth in my ears and show me the Good He wanted for me.  So, my courage came from The Lord and a big old orange tractor. And my husband encouraged me.  My friends.  My family.  The encouragement and Body of Christ really came along side of me.  


What was most helpful as you launched?

A friend gave me this book.  It helped me with organizing my thoughts and plans for Allie Mac.  It truly is an amazing resource. My friend, Lorien really has been instrumental in helping me with Allie Mac.  She pushed me.  She held me accountable.  She hosted my first show.  She took all of my pictures.  Her excitement, enthusiasm and love really helped me gain some self confidence I had been lacking for a long time.  Leighton my husband has encouraged me the whole time.  He has made so many sacrifices to help make Allie Mac happen.  We are learning so much about life right now.  How to balance (does anyone ever figure this out?) life.  Enjoy Life.  And Glorify God.  

The bottom line is Allie Mac is here to glorify God, not me.  I have always wanted each lady who puts on an Allie Mac to feel beautiful and special, just the way God created her to be.  I have had a lifelong issue with weight.  Over, under and just right weight issues.   But, I truly believe God wants us to see ourselves through His lens, not ours.   This is the message of Allie Mac.   
How would you like to encourage other women considering starting a business?
I am an encourager by nature.  So, I am always telling people….”You can do this too! Just do this.or.that.”  And take a chance.  Sometimes God will totally bless your socks off and will totally make your heart smile.  Starting a business is hard.  Sanctifying, actually. The good far outweighs the bad though!  Oh and find your biggest cheerleaders and ask them their thoughts.  Then ask people you don’t know so well what they think.  And always trust God.  Always.

Any specific resources you'd like to share?

I researched a specific niche I wanted to create.  I got a ton of help from a good friend who makes handmade bags and men’s ties.  She developed a niche and I loved that idea of creating something that wasn’t common.  Then I found ladies online who had started their own business and saw how they ran their business.  There are so many ladies out there with a wealth of knowledge who want other ladies to succeed!  I want to be one of those ladies someday.

*****
And now, I give you, The Brandon:


From Allie Mac-
Meet the Brandon.  Brandon is my friend who from the very get go of Allie Mac has asked me to do a wrap dress.  I wanted to do something different, and this is what happened.  And I love it.  I actually squealed when I put it on.  I also wore it to dinner right after I squealed.  I love it that much.  This really is a year round dress.  Casual or dress it up.  Fun.  Reversible. Meaning the opening can be in the front or the back.   Right now it has no tie.  Just throw on one of your fabulous belts or don't!





 *****

Now that you all want to be Allie Mac's best friend, let's talk giveaway. 

To enter:
This is the only required entry to be eligible!
(But you must record this here in the comment section.)

For additional entries (use them all if you'd like!)*
1. Leave a comment here telling us which piece you'd choose if you win.
2. Follow Allie Mac Designs on Twitter.
3. Tweet about the giveaway.
4. Share about the giveaway on Facebook.
5. Like Table for 3 on Facebook.
6. Follow Table for 3 on Bloglovin.  
Follow on Bloglovin

Giveaway will run from Tuesday, May 21 to Friday, May 24 at Midnight. 

*Here's the thing. For each entry, leave a note in the comments letting me know you did so. "I tweeted!" and "I shared on Facebook!" I'll count each entry separately and use a random number generator to pick the winner! Be sure to shop around Allie Mac's Etsy site either way!

Wednesday, May 15, 2013

Life Cycle of an Art Project

I love my kids, I love their creations, but I don't need every painted piece of construction paper. AmIright?

At the same time, guilt creeps up on me every time I take a freshly painted puppy page to the trashcan. So I wait a while. I let things hang around for a few days. There's a definite life cycle.

I've noticed that this is what happens at our house:
Stage 1: Prominant Display
Project is displayed prominently upon completion. Out there in the open. We are proud.


Stage 2: "I'll just put it here to dry..."
Right. Just to dry. Not...planning...anything.

Stage 3: Impending Doom
Let's be honest about what we're working towards here. The art project starts sweating nervously. Asks for a bandana and a cigarette.

Stage 4: Final Destination
Mission accomplished. Off to snuggle my little artists while their work sleeps with the fishes.


What do you do with little Picasso's paintings?
Little Monet's masterpieces?
(With that we have reached the limits of my knowledge of famous artists
and I bid you good day.)

Sunday, May 12, 2013

A Little Mother's Day Round-Up

Y'all, the floodgates of mommy goodness are open.

Here are some of my favorite Mother's Day offerings so far.

Kid President does it again.
(Note to self: Buy Liv a black suit.)


(Meatloaf. Got it.) 

********


My friend Becca sent this one earlier. 
Grace, grace, grace, regardless of the stage.


********


This, from Glennon at Momastary, isn't new. 
But it's a favorite. Worth reading, every time. 


********


Here's my favorite paragraph from Ann Voskamp's post:

The deal is — Motherhood isn’t sainthood and we’re all a bunch of sinners here and don’t let anyone tell you any different — pushing something out of your womb doesn’t make you a better woman. Real Womanhood isn’t a function of becoming a great mother, but of being loved by your Great Father. Someone write that on a card with a bouquet of flowers. We all need that.


********


And then there's this. Amanda at Life-Edited does it again.
Posted at A Deeper Story, this poem took my breath away.
Not My Work of Art



Happy Mother's Day, 
from this prodigal parent.

 

Thursday, May 9, 2013

If you have to ask, you can't afford it.

Get ready to be impressed.

So Eliza doesn't take a morning nap anymore, and Liv is at school on Tuesdays and Thursdays. I've spent some time trying to figure out how to make good use of these mornings where I only have one baby in tow.

Shopping for sport isn't a good idea. Cleaning with an almost 2 year-old is, um, frustrating (plus I don't clean.) I've done some playdates and things that are Eliza-centered and I've loved this sweet time with her. But I still kind of wanted a purpose for at least one of these days. Some direction for these simpler mornings. So I started having people over for breakfast.

Usually it's Thursday. Life-Giving Thursday. Who can I cook breakfast for this week? It's obviously limited to those who can come over on a Thursday morning. So, basically moms who stay home or have Thursday off, or friends with flexible schedules. So, there's a flaw. But so far I've been able to fill up my Thursdays. Until today.

So I decided to tackle a project. Project Teach Myself to Sew.

"It's so easy!" my friends have said.
"YouTube is a GREAT help. That's basically how I learned!" says the woman with her own clothing line.
"I could show you," says my husband.

And yet, the sewing machine my mother-in-law gave me has been gathering dust in the basement since...we moved in.

So. I grabbed it.

I sat down. I found the manual online. I started going step by step. I realized I don't have any thread. Doh.

I decided to take the machine and my kid to a local fabric store. I'd heard the owner is awesome and is happy to show idiots how to work their own machines. Guess what? She is, and she was!

I walked out with white thread and the know-how I needed. "You'll probably need more instruction," she offered. "We do classes here on Tuesdays..." I told her I'd be there.

But you guys, I came home, re-threaded the machine (including winding a BOBBIN), and sewed something!


I texted Duff, revealing the obvious: I'm a natural.
Duff: Is that a bag or a hat?
Me: Pardon?
Me: I'm not sure I understand.
Duff: Hat or bag?
Me: Yes.

I texted Jaci:
Me: Just learned how to operate my sewing machine an hour ago and I'm already turning these things out.
Jaci: Lol, are those snack bags?
(I love her for her optimism.)
Me: If you have to ask you can't afford it.

While clearly this has potential to be my new medium, I intend to go to the class too. You know, so that I can make something more than a three-sided Dopey hat/snack bag.

(But if you want one...I'm not above making another.)
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