Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Goodbye....Kind Of

You may have noticed that my posts have basically disappeared. Besides having a busy month--traveling for a cousin's wedding, and THREE surgeries (The King had a deviated septum fixed and just yesterday BOTH kids had their tonsils and adenoids taken out)--I have decided to lay bella*tessa designs to rest. *sniffle*

I am returning to teaching this year (a little over a week away!), and have decided that between that and my family, my priorites will be changing! Some good news for you other fabric junkies--I am selling off my ENORMOUS fabric stash! I am starting by offering all my fabrics through my facebook page. My fabric album (ONLY) is available for anyone to look at. Click HERE to see what I've posted so far. I have well over 100 more fabrics to go, so keep checking!

*Another side note: When/if I list these fabrics on etsy, the prices WILL go up. I'm offering them cheaply now, because I don't have to take the time to list, and there are no extra fees.*

Also, I think my blog will be laid to rest as well. I am doing most of my "connecting" through facebook.

Thanks to all who have supported me and become my "online friends." It has been a GREAT 3 years!

Monday, June 22, 2009

New Tonight!

Sometimes I design a set because I think it's what buyers are looking for. Sometimes I design a set because it fits in with the theme of a launch I'm participating in. But sometimes I design a set just because fabrics "speak" to me and it's something I know I'll like on MY little girl. This set is one of those!

You can find the listing by clicking HERE!

Thursday, June 11, 2009

My ebay design group, IVYLANE, began their "Cherry Picking" Launch today! I am offering the these 3 (yes, THREE) listings! You can find them HERE.

Sunday, June 7, 2009


We are back and we had a fabulous time!! If you are interested in seeing MANY pictures with some descriptions, click on the link below:


***I'm told my original link expired, but I've updated it (as of 6/12).***

Can't wait to go back!!

Saturday, May 23, 2009


Right after my last post, I returned to full-time work. I took over a Kindergarten class for a teacher who went on maternity leave, then ended up finishing the year. Next Thursday is the LAST DAY of school!!

It has been an adjustment for not only myself, but also for my entire family having me return to teaching, but it was ultimately the right time! I love teaching and being in the classroom again. However, in order to prioritize my time, a few things had to be dropped, and this blog was one of them. I've missed sharing with all of you, and am ready to get back in the swing!

The first week of June, we are taking the kids on their first trip to Disney World and we are all SUPER excited!! I'll have plenty of pictures to share when we return.

For now, I have this picture of my Kindergarten GRADUATE!! It's hard to believe how quickly he is growing and maturing! He did SO well and he looked so handsome!

CONGRATS to the Prince!!

Saturday, March 28, 2009

WAIT....What's Today's Date?

From this picture, it is hard to tell....

We do NOT get snow at the end of March in these parts, but we ARE! It's supposed to be in the 50's tomorrow, so it won't be here for long, but the kids are enjoying it today.

I know it's been quiet around here, but I returned to teaching this week, and am adjusting to working outside the home. All adjusting aside, I am LOVING my return to the classroom. I am finishing up some sewing orders and will have a few new designs--I just don't want to spread myself too thin.

Thursday, March 5, 2009

Little Ballerina

I just listed this sweet set in collaboration with Erin (the_vintage_pearl) and Jamie (**jjbb**). You can find all of the Little Ballerina listings HERE!

Wednesday, March 4, 2009


Here's my newest listing for the ATEAM Barefoot Launch! You can find it HERE!!

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Something NEW and a GIVEAWAY!!

IVYLANE began their "Sweets" launch yesterday and I am offering this "Sweet Bunnies" dress. You can find it HERE!

Also, you can be entered into a fabulous IVYLANE giveaway! Just visit the IVYLANE BLOG and follow the directions!!

Sunday, February 22, 2009

Something Sweet

Friday, February 20, 2009

Spring Chicks

I just listed these cute and fuzzy chicks (on the hoodie WITH the matching skirt, of course). You can find it HERE!

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Somebody Help This Dog

We've tried explaining to The Princess that the dog is NOT a doll--or even a little person--but I don't think she's getting it....

The other day she told us Oreo liked to "spin." WHAT? It seems she had put the dog in my office chair and was "spinning" her around...*sigh*

Dino Days

My kids' school has Dino Week--a week focused on books and reading--and today was "Dress Like Your Favorite Book Character" day. My girl chose to go as Laura Ingalls and my son decided to go as The Man in the Big Yellow Hat (from Curious George). All I have to say is, "Did I REALLY think I could make a big yellow hat all by myself?" While the costumes are definitely NOT even close to my quality standards, it just doesn't matter, because my kids thought they looked SO GOOD--and that's the point!

Sunday, February 15, 2009

Feelin' the Love

The kids both had fun parties at school. I think you can tell what they both enjoyed the most!

Some PUPPY love....Oreo has secured her place in our hearts!

Monday, February 9, 2009

A Little of This and A Little of That

Just a little "catch-up" post...

The Prince had a birthday--

The birthday cake:

The birthday sundae (We take the kids to IHOP on their birthdays--it's the ONLY day they get ice cream at breakfast!):

Cupcakes I made for his class (yes, I made them):

Six big BEAR hugs from his teacher:

The rest of the birthday cake at the family party:

The Princess gave us some looks--

If I don't eat all my pancakes, I don't get ice cream? OH MY!!

This is THE LOOK...you know, the look only girls seem capable of giving:

And, the DOG--

She needs another trip to the groomers:

She's learning a few tricks:

She LOVES to play with The Prince:

News From bella*tessa designs!!

In the midst of all the healing going on around here, some other changes have occurred, as well...

I am now a member of the ebay design group:

It's an exciting new venture for me and have listed my first set with them today. You can find it HERE!

Thursday, February 5, 2009

Where I've Been...

I've been nursing the sick...in my own household. Everyone in my home has been on antibiotics in the past month, so we are all doing much better!

In addition, I made the decision to return to teaching next year. However, it seems God had a different idea, because I'll be returning AFTER SPRING BREAK! A teacher in my children's school is going on maternity leave and I'll be taking her place. It seems there's quite a bit of paperwork involved to return to a job that you left 6 years ago.

I will be continuing with my sewing, but am excited that it will be shifting from a full-time job to an enjoyable hobby! I will still be listing sets on ebay and etsy and will keep you updated here. I just won't be listing quite as many, so if you like something, get it while you can!!

Life is returning to normal, so hopefully my blog posts won't be quite as sparce. I'll be posting about my son's birthday next!

Thursday, January 8, 2009

A Kitchen Renovation

When we moved into this house back in July of 2004, we knew we wanted to change the kitchen. However, with the birth of our daughter 4 days later, 2 small children, a full time job, not to mention a BUDGET, it's taken a little time, but the kitchen is finished! I didn't take great pictures along the way, but managed a little time line (also shows the progression of cameras/photography):

November 2004--As it was when we moved in: striped fruity wallpaper, 90's oak cabinets, green painted formica backsplash, faux bleached wood laminate countertops.

October 2005--We'd torn down the wallpaper and began the preparations to refinish the cabinets.

December 2008--Right before the final renovations with refinished cabinets and dark red paint on the walls.

(Almost) FINISHED!! January 2009--This is my favorite part: the window box above the sink and our new sink and faucet--just needing some grout.

Another view of the finished counters and the tiled backsplash. Let me add that my husband (with help from his dad) did the MAJORITY of the renovations on his own!

We do have new lights to put up, but that will involve some electrical finagling, so it will be a weekend project (soon!).

Sunday, December 21, 2008


If you know me, you thought this post would never come (or not come for a VERY long time), but we have a puppy--and we are all in love!

She is a Lhasa Apso puppy that we got at the Humane Society yesterday. She is a puppy mill rescue who is 3 months old and just about as sweet as can be. She only weighs 3 1/2 pounds (maybe 3 now after we had her shaved to get rid of all the knots and matting she had).

When we picked her up, they were calling her "Tinsel," but the kids wanted to pick their own name for her. Unfortunately, it seems a 4 and 5 year old can't agree on a dog name. While calling Aunt Erin to tell her about our new pup, she suggested "Oreo," since she's black and white--JACKPOT! BOTH of the kids agreed immediately to have that be her new name!

Training a new puppy is really never fun, but to be honest, it is going better than we thought it would. We actually got 5 hours of straight sleep last night followed by about 3 more (after The King took her out, of course). We've decided to work really hard at the beginning to train her, so that she will be a great dog for the rest of her life.....right?

Bottom line: she's adorable, loving, cuddly, and the kids think she's the best Christmas present EVER!!

Saturday, December 13, 2008


Have you heard about the wonderful legislation passed to ensure our kids toys are lead and phthalate free? Did you know that the law ended up being worded in such a way that, unless amendments are made, it will be illegal for me to sell my hand-made clothing come February 10? I truly didn't believe it, at first--and to be honest, I'm still having a hard time wrapping my head around it. I'm still researching, but what I've found so far seems to imply that in an effort to protect our children (which I am ALL for), a law was passed that will impact not only me, but THOUSANDS of other small businesses.

I've copied this from the Etsy site, because it gives a very general idea of what I'm looking at--and writing just isn't one of my "things." If you are interested in more information, leave a comment and I'll be happy to share with you.

The following is an open letter regarding the Consumer Product Safety Improvement Act (CPSIA). This Act, which will go into effect on February 10th, 2009, puts forth much more stringent safety measures for products intended for children under the age of 12.

Under the very important auspices of child safety, the Act may have grave unintended consequences: fewer choices for families who are looking for handcrafted alternatives. Many Etsy artists and craftspeople have expressed fears that they won't be able stay in business due to the burdensome cost of testing and certification pursuant to the proposed legislation.

As a venue for handcrafted and vintage items from small entrepreneurs, Etsy has invited the Ombudsman of the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission to join us in a webchat in our Virtual Lab. Etsy would very much appreciate the opportunity to provide a forum for discussing the concerns of artisans who make toys and children's products as well as their customers who support handmade products.

We urge members of the Etsy community and anyone concerned with both child safety and conscientious consumption to contact their governmental representatives; ask them to consider how the Act will impact independent craftspeople.

The office of the CPSC ombudsman: 888-531-9070.
Visit the Handmade Toy Alliance for information about writing your representatives.

Over 200,000 artists, crafters and vintage collectors sell their items on Etsy.com. Many of these artisans make toys and other items for children. Made with love, care, the human touch and—often—all-natural materials, these items bring the consumer marketplace back to a personal level where customers can chat with toy makers and even create custom items for specific needs. Etsy members are part of a larger movement that seeks to creatively provide people across the globe with alternatives to mass-produced goods.

Many Etsy sellers are work-at-home-moms and dads. Among them are crafters with the skill and heart to preserve traditions of toy-making or to innovate their own methods of making children's items with a DIY (Do-It-Yourself) hands-on philosophy. You can meet an Etsy toy maker and seller by watching this five minute video portrait (all of our videos are published under open Creative Commons, so please feel free to repost). Amber Dusick, aka woodmouse.etsy.com and Los Angeles-based toy-maker/work-at-home-mama, is an artist who would be impacted by this proposed legislation if it is enacted. Amber uses sustainably harvested woods, non-toxic paints and beeswax along with her wood-burning tool to create simple, natural wooden toys. Her imagery is reminiscent of a child's crayon drawing come to life in wood.

Amber, like other Etsy toy makers and sellers, is fearful that as a sole proprietor she will not be able to afford the stricter regulations of the Act; the cost of testing and certification is likely beyond her means. She told Etsy, “I'd be more than happy to have each of my toys tested, if it wasn't so cost prohibitive. It is the COST involved in testing that will shut us down, it isn't that anyone refuses to have their work tested."

The Small Business Administration defines "small business" as under 500 employees. Most of our Etsy members are either sole proprietors or maybe a family or studio of friends working together. Many craftspeople on Etsy have told us that they could be put out of business if forced to comply with the proposed legislation. This is the painful irony bound up in the CPSIA.

Etsy wanted to reach out with this open letter to see what can be done to ensure that small businesses and micro enterprises are being taken into account with this legislation. Our members would like to better understand how the CPSIA took into account these smaller businesses operating with fewer resources for testing and compliance. We believe Etsy artisans are pro-testing and pro-safety; the problem is the prohibitive certification costs relative to their small businesses' incomes. Our community is concerned that this legislature disregards small businesses in its attempts to regulate large corporate entities.

The U.S. House and Senate passed the Consumer Product Safety Improvement Act of 2008 (the CPSIA), and on August 14, 2008, President Bush signed the Act into law. Further information on the Act is available at the CPSC website at http://www.cpsc.gov/ and helpful FAQs are located http://www.cpsc.gov/about/cpsia/faq/faq.pdf.

Friday, December 12, 2008

A Letter to a Dog

About18 months ago, we went to visit some of my husband's relatives. They have a little white dog named Holli, and my son fell in love. He talks about her all the time, and (of course) thinks we need a dog, too.

This week, my husband took a business trip that allowed him to visit his family and he sent a couple of pictures of Holli back to us. This rekindled my son's "obsession" with Holli, and he decided to send her a letter (yes, to the dog). He sat and wrote the letter and drew the picture with absolutely NO help--even put it in the envelope so I could address it and put on a stamp.

Last night, I saw the envelope sitting with a pencil right beside it at "my spot" at the kitchen table--presumable so I wouldn't forget to do what I said I'd do. I hadn't looked at what he'd done, but when I took it out, I was so glad I had my new scanner--this was something I wanted to keep!

Here's the letter:
(Dear Holli, How much fun are you having with my dad? Aunt Alice, write a letter.)

Here's the picture of him with Holli on a leash:

Wednesday, December 10, 2008


We have purchased ticket for all four of us to go see this:

This will be the first time for the kids to see it and they are actually pretty excited!

I just purchase tickets for just me and The King to go see these guys:

Talk about excitement!! We pretty much play their music non-stop this time of year. Chances are you've heard them before, but if you aren't sure, click on this link to hear one of my all-time favorite songs:


Monday, December 8, 2008


It's been requested of me to post some of the following photos (mostly by family members), so here you go:

First, in the King's last race, the professional photographer caught this picture of him:

Second, here is my entire family: parents, brother, sister-in-law, nieces, nephews, husband, children and me. We try to get a decent picture every year at Thanksgiving!

Saturday, December 6, 2008

Loves Me!

I just listed this Valentine's Day set, and you can find it HERE!

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Sample Set Listings!

I just listed FIVE of my Christmas sample sets and they all have FREE shipping!! Check them out HERE.

We've been having holiday fun with family at our house for Thanksgiving followed by whirlwind days of getting all the Christmas decorations up! I'll have some pictures to post in the next day or so.