Tuesday, April 15, 2014

My Mom's Birthday - Gift Ideas {Semi-Sponsored Post}

My mom's birthday is this weekend and I have no idea what to get her.  What do you get the woman who, when she wants something, she just buys it?  In the past I've relied on something having to do with Lemon, of course, and she has always liked gifts that feature her granddaughters, but do I do something different this year?

Last year I got her a necklace with a portrait of her and Lemon on it and she LOVED it.  Sonia of Dandelyne makes the cutest little embroidered portraits and pictures, you have to check these out!  And, she even sells kits for you to do one yourself if you are crafty!  I ordered a cute little Lemon for me and got my mom a portrait of the two of them and she loved it!



One year, to show my appreciation for helping to plan (and help pay for) my baby shower, I ordered my mom a custom "Nani" (Italian for "grandma") frame from Angie Austin Art on Etsy.  Angie hand paints each frame and I absolutely love them.  I actually bought one for all the girls who helped with my baby shower, one for my dad for Father's day, my mom, my husband and I even gave one away last year on my blog!  They are so cute and such a great idea as a gift for a family member, with a special picture inside.


This year, a sponsored post popped up on my blog for these custom charm bracelets from Planet Jill.  What a cute idea, putting pictures of your loved ones on your jewelry, like an old-school locket, but a more modern and sophisticated version!  You can choose one that they have in the shop, or design your own; and I'm kind of loving the design your own option!  (I may need one of these for Mother's Day for myself!)

Image from planetjill.com.

I also love this simple, sterling silver photo necklace ($116), it makes me want to take a recent picture of me, my mom and Lemon so that I can make her one for Mother's Day!


You mean that I could have a sterling silver ring ($95) with a picture of Lemon on it?  What?!  I love it!

All images are from planetjill.com.

Some more information about this stay-at-home mom's business (you know I love that a mom started this company!):

"Founded by stay-at-home mom, Jill Schiff, Planet Jill specializes in designing one-of-a-kind sterling silver elegant treasures with the faces of loved ones inside their handcrafted charms. Choose from a beautiful line of designs, or use Planet Jill's Charm Builder to design your own unique necklace or bracelet. Planet Jill is the perfect Mother's Day gift, something that Mom will truly cherish for a lifetime.

Use the code PJMAMA at checkout to get $10 Off your first order! And follow PlanetJill on Facebook for a chance to win weekly giveaways all month long!"


They have a build it page on their website that allows you to choose pictures you want to use in your piece of selected jewelry, resize them and then you receive your gift in the mail without having to add them later - the pictures are already there!  How cool is that?!  (I hate having to cut, fit, squish pictures into tiny spaces.)

So, whether you are looking for a gift for a loved one for their birthday, Mother's Day or even Father's Day (Planet Jill has keychains, pins, magnets, etc.) these would be my pick for something both sentimental, modern and stylish.  Order now and receive $10 off (see coupon code above)!

If you guys know of any other small, family run businesses that have products that would be great for a birthday gift or for Mother's Day, leave them in the comments below.  I could always use some more ideas!  Now, go shop and support this mama!


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Monday, April 14, 2014

A Shock to the System

{My Instagram feed (on the left) is temporarily down.  It will be back up soon enough, I just need some time to recover!  I apologize for the giant black square and sad face.}

Last night and today I got two photos removed from Instagram by someone who reported them as "inappropriate."  The first was a photo of Lemon laying in the tub, with her vajayjay (yes, vajay for short) covered up with a clip art flower and the second was a photo I don't even know what of, because it was down before I could figure it out (and was one of my older pictures).  What a shock to the system.


There is someone out there (probably a few people) who think(s) it is their right to report a photo of my daughter, that only shows her chest (the same thing that is shown in diaper ads/commercials), to "protect" Lemon or "keep her safe" or whatever.  Isn't that my job as her mom?  Aren't I an adult capable of making those decisions?

I hate to break it to you people but there are perverts out there no matter if we post photos or not.  Are they looking at our Instagram feeds, FaceBook pages and blogs?  Sure.  Can we do anything about it?  Nope.  And if you're private does that stop them?  No way.  Once it's online it's out there, no matter what you may think.  Do these perverts affect my life if they are looking at my pictures?  Nope.  What can I possibly do about it?  (And remember, I was around when there was no internet - yep, for reals.)

I know that there are some moms who don't want their kids on the internet, sure.  I know that there are some moms that will put their kids on the internet and just not put up any naked pictures of them, that's cool, it's their kid so it's up to them.  But, if I want to post a naked picture of MY kid then it's MY choice - I am her mom and I can make that decision myself.  I don't need you flagging my photos and making it for me.  You are keeping Lemon safe?  Yeah right.  You are annoying me more like it and wasting my time!

I felt so violated and confused, and felt like another mom out there was judging instead of writing their concerns directly to me (I have many different platforms on which to get a hold of me, it's easy!).  But instead they report my photos and put my Instagram account in jeopardy, ridiculous.  I love my IG feed, I love my photos and I am sad that today I had to delete over 100 pictures and videos of my girl because she was topless in them.  I am also sad that now I have to censor what I post when I've always taken pride in the fact that I'm "real" and write/post exactly what's going on in my life at the moment.  Censoring yourself and your own pictures?  What a bummer.

I came home tonight to a sick girl with a runny nose and was just so disappointed, stressed and annoyed.  Then I cuddled my girl and felt better.  And, I read all of your comments on IG (especially yours @imso1986), and remembered why I started documenting our lives in the first place.  It was to put us out there, to put our story out there of how our family came to be, in hopes that it would help others and help me heal at the same time.

It has.  I have met so many lovely people through this platform and that one, I wouldn't change a thing.  I get emails weekly that make my heart happy, emails from moms who have found me through my story.  I read all of your comments, all of your emails and feel like I know so many of you mamas and your families - and hope one day I can meet some of you.  I am happy to be "out there" and happy that you are "out there" too so we can connect and be one on our journey in motherhood.  We are all connected.

I don't want my account to be private.  I don't want to hide from these negative people (not that a private account means that you're hiding).  I didn't want to take down my pictures.  I hate that I felt like I had to do it, at the risk of losing all of you, and all of my pictures.  But, today was a blessing in disguise because it reminded me of just how many kind and wonderful people there are, even if there are some jerks too.

Thanks ladies for lifting my spirits today, sharing your opinions, frustrations and commiserating with me.  I appreciate all of you.  I know what's really important and I am one lucky lady.  Thanks for following along on this journey, I've loved being a part of yours too.  xoxo



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