Friday, September 28, 2012

Friday FIVE

I took a break from blogging this week to focus on orders and finalizing all of our fixtures and such for the addition, but I couldn't skip posting the Friday FIVE.

1.  Paper
Is this a surprise to any of you?  While our Photo Card Sale is still going on, we are adding to it this weekend.  We will double the quantity of your flat or folded order this weekend only!  I LOVE to give stationery as a gift and based on today's orders, we think a lot of teachers are getting personalized stationery this year!  You can see all of our designs HERE.

Seriously, is there anything better?  Grove Gal E announced this week she is pregnant and she will make a great mom!  Baby C is going to have to learn how to share his godmother....

3.  Charms & Charm Bracelets
I LOVE charm bracelets!  I have started a gold and a silver one for Mini K and have lost count!  My favorites though are hand engraved charms.   They become instant heirlooms!

4.  Gold
I blame J.Crew for my lack of self control this week with their 25% off code (STYLE25) but thankfully I got my cash back through Ebates!  I LOVE these gold shoes.  I plan on wearing them with dresses and jeans and so much more!

5.  Lists
I love technology, but there is something about taking a Sharpie and crossing something off a list that makes me feel like progress.  I have two big lists right for the house and one for the holidays.  My goal is always to finish my holiday shopping by Thanksgiving so I can move on to birthday shopping for Mr. G and Mini K.  I am thrilled that Grove Gal E is just as much of a planner as I am and will find out the baby's gender so I know if I am searching for blue or pink!

Sunday, September 23, 2012

Pick Me Up or Hand Me Down Happies

Friday was an Apple day....the local news gave what seemed like constant updates on the wait times at various Apple stores, every station on my car radio did the same thing, from what I can tell the iPhone 5 was the biggest story!

For those of you that did not pre-order and iPhone 5 or wait in line at the stores and are still sporting your iPhone 4 or 4s, we have a SALE just for you!  All of our personalized iPhone 4 and 4s cases are on sale for $38.95!

I LOVE our orange and white stripe and our brown striped case is also a customer favorite!

When I upgraded from my 3g to a 4G, I gave Mini K my old phone.  Let me clarify, I did not give a cell phone plan to a then 5 year old.  I turned off the monthly cell service and my 3g became an itouch! I put a new cover on it with her name and favorite colors and donated our bulky portable DVD player to Goodwill.  She could then pack AND carry all of her movies in her own backpack and carry them on the plane!  My bag got lighter!  So for those of you now sporting the new iPhone 5 (our cases are coming!), but you too can take advantage of our 4/4s sale if you are handing your phone down!

We believe in recycling, but it is always more fun when it is pretty!

Friday, September 21, 2012

Friday FIVE

I had plans to blog last night, but Baby C wanted me to tackle a list...the list happened to be IN SHARPIE and ON HIS FACE.  Let's just say that hydrogen peroxide, lemon juice, baking soda and a sponge and some M & M's to get him to sit still and we have a "list free" face today.

I will warn you, I am ALL over the place with my Friday Five today.

1.  Sparkles
There is something about a sparkly evening bag that transforms a little black dress.  While I have several color combinations, this one is always my go to in black and silver or maybe it's the monogram...

2.  Aerin
The new make-up line by Aerin Lauder is AMAZING.  I have been in a make-up rut and clearly broke out of it when I purchased her entire line.  What working mom doesn't divide her life between weekday and weekend!  The best part, no more huge make up bags as it all fits into a tiny bag.

3.  Candy Corn
I consider it a miracle that I have walked by those Brach's bags for the past 3 weeks, but today, I needed a fix.  So the Grove is officially stocked, and my running shoes are ON!
4.  Sweaters
I love a great sweater...throw on a scarf, some leggings and a pair of boots and errands or meetings feel like I am in my pj's.  If you have seen me at a trunk show, then you know this is my go to winter outfit. I just discovered these sweaters from Garnet Hill and am not sure what I like more:  the shape or the pockets!  I see a brown and black one heading towards my closet!  You can save 25% off your Garnet Hill purchase with code: W24AC3W1

5.  Frye Boots
I still need it to be a little cooler before I can break out my boots, but I just ordered THESE in black to add to my growing collection.  Frye boots feel like slippers and are perfect over leggings or dressed up. I was able to save 20% with this code:   VB2KWCXQTVLV.  
I hope you have a great weekend and PLEASE let me know if you post a Friday Five as I would love to read it.

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

It's Fall Y'all!

I know that Starbuck's is serving Pumpkin Spice lattes and my Target has officially skipped Halloween and Thanksgiving, but at Casa Grove it's not fall until we make Pumpkin Chocolate Chip muffins.

Now get ready because this recipe is SUPER tough and will stretch your culinary skills:

1 can Libby's pumpkin pie filling
1 box yellow cake mix
1 bag of chocolate chips (we use semi-sweet)

Open up all bags and boxes
Dump in a bowl

Spoon into your favorite muffin tin and back at 350 degrees for 15-20 minutes or until your toothpick comes out clean.

Trust me...they will DISAPPEAR!!!!!!!!

It's also not fall until the holiday card orders start coming in!  I won't share the photo or name obviously, but one of our clients submitted what I think is the cutest card yet this year today...don't worry I asked her before I posted this!  She and her husband just found out they are expecting a girl so they decorated their mantle in pink, the husband is wearing pink button down and khakis and the mom to-be is looking oh so cute and TINY in a Lilly P dress with a sign that says It's A Girl!  These chose this sweet card and are having it printed to read:

We are dreaming of a PINK 2013 This Christmas Season!  Wishing you silent nights for 83 more days!  She messaged me that she is going to mail her cards on December 1st so the countdown is correct!  For her return address, instead of their names it will say:  We are turning pink on March xx.

I am so happy we could help her save some money with all of the diapers in her future!  Remember ALL of our digital photo cards )flat and folded) as well as our entire selection of cards where you attach your own photo are 25% off with your choice of FREE shipping or return address printing through October 8th with code:  SHOL25!  You can see all of our designs HERE.

Monday, September 17, 2012

Party Favors

I have always liked giving favors to my guests for anything from a shower to a birthday or even an open house.  Party favors can be a stressful process, but these are some of my go to happies that are stress free.

For large events, I tend to go with a food favor.  I have tried more iced cookie companies than I can count, but have found one that makes a GREAT tasting cookie that is also a stunner visually.  Batches cookies are not your typical crunchy sugar cookie, they are soft and their icing isn't fondant, it's almost like a cross between a royal icing and a buttercream.  Lisa and Ira the owners are great to work with and they have done everything from tennis, to ice skating, to monograms for me and I have LOVED them all!  I am almost finished with my list of what I need to order for the holidays.  I always have them send them to me in bulk and then I wrap them up in coordinating ribbon or containers to fit my theme.  You can visit their fabulous shop HERE.

Mini K has been lobbying HARD for a sleepover party.  Clearly this wouldn't be for the 18+ girls in first grade or I might need to therapy!  We get a LOT of requests from mom's for non-food favors for smaller groups of girls.  One of our best sellers are the monogrammed bows in the school plaid for those that wear a uniform or a solid color to match the party decor or birthday girl's favorite color.  These bows are $20 and that includes the monogram or $25 for the custom school plaid bows.  You just ship us a skirt or a jumper and the monograms and leave the rest to us!  If you are interested in a particular color or large quantity, email us as we would LOVE to work with you!

Nail Polish sets are also a great idea.  I LOVE these gameday sets to give for a party that would be on a Friday night and you can always have some Gameday snacks or bloody mary's ready in the morning for when the parents come to pickup.  You can find them on sale for half price HERE and they have a LOT of school combos!

You can also get 3 nail polish paint pens for $15.99 HERE.  I think pairing one paint pen with some candy in a cello bag with a big bow would be a great favor!

I always found first birthday party favors tricky as the birthday boy or girl is usually the youngest at the party. I LOVE these sippy cups as party favors.  They are on sale HERE for 2 cups for $14.99.  Just add a cello bag and a bow and you have a great gift that babies, toddlers and big kids alike will enjoy long after the sugar high from the cake fades!  There are boy designs as well.
Now who said only kids like favors?  I am planning a ladies lunch for the holidays and am hoping our book club can go back to actually meeting, notice I didn't say reading?  It's always fun to surprise a friend or two or 6 with a treat.  I LOVE these tumblers for the car and at less than $8 you could tie a bow to the straw and have them at the door as a "roadie" cup or put them out to make book club or supper club more fun!  You can see all of the designs HERE.  These would also make GREAT teacher gifts alone wrapped up or partnered with a Strabucks giftcards or some candy.

What is your favorite favor to give or get?

Sunday, September 16, 2012

3 Is A Charm: Kate Spade Discount

1.  I am not entering into the twitter/blogger discussion as to the quality of Kate Spade or what I think of their customer service

2.  I may be the giving you OLD NEWS, but it was new news to me today!

I take my phone everywhere, including on my runs since it holds my music.  The problem is I seem to go through (translation LOSE) my white earbuds on a weekly basis.  Mini K finally said, Momma maybe if they were a color you wouldn't lose them.  She then proceeded to color them BLACK with a sharpie...I won't share the photo of my white monogrammed placemat that was her coloring background.

Which brings me to my discount triple threat of the weekend:

1.  I will share with you that Kate Spade has some adorable ear buds!  I will sale share that you can take 20% off your purchase through September 20th with code:  AUGSALE.  That would be 20% off ALL full priced items.

2.  Kate Spade also offer FREE SHIPPING

3.  Kate Spade is on Ebates, and if you shop through your Ebates account you will get 3.5% cash back.  If you haven't joined, you can HERE.

SO let's add that up, essentially 23.5% off your purchase and free shipping, which in D.C. also means no headache trying to find a parking place in Georgetown!

Now that fall is here, the Friends and Family sales should be entering our inboxes!  I know the Brooks Brothers sale is coming up and I promise to post the code as soon as I have it.  I will also start doing posts titled FRIENDS AND FAMILY SALE INFO whenever I get a new code.  PLEASE feel free to comment and add in any codes you may receive as well or let me know if there is any particular store you are hoping to find.

We shoppers must stick together right?

Friday, September 14, 2012

Friday Five

I must admit this week's Friday Five I am excited about.  Full disclosure...I paid FULL price for everything except #5 which I purchased on sale at CVS.  My point is, I always wonder when people review items on their blogs, especially expensive items, if they would actually purchase the items with their own money.  I can say that without a doubt I would purchase these items again as I LOVE them.

1.  iPhone 5
I have been patiently waiting..ok patient as in stalking the blogs and the Apple site daily for the past few weeks.  I woke up early this morning to get my pre-order in before they run out.  I love all things Mac, but I hate standing in line! I wanted my cash back for my purchase in my Ebates account!

2.  Frizz Free Hair
About a year a lot of bloggers reviewed a $200 hair dryer.  I don't know if it works, but let me tell you I have Minnie Driver curly hair (when the Keratin treatments wear off) and it is also super thick.  Let me define thick...if I let my hair air dry it takes 26 hours and YES I have timed it.  I paid the full price of $150 for my BarBar dryer and think it was worth every single penny.  I can dry my hair pencil straight in 25 minutes.  I might love it even more if I only paid $75, which is the deal you can get HERE.  Seriously, I have tried the Solano dryer and a few other pricey ones, but this one WORKS.  For a working mom like me it is essentially like buying time as it takes no time at all.
3.  Carseat
It sounds exciting right?  Let's just say Baby C is not as neat as his sister so my search for a cover begins.  I thought I read the description wrong, surely a monogrammed carseat cover could not be $ was!  I think these make a great gift and I always try to keep a spare in my car...just in case.  You can order them HERE.
4.  Baubles
You know I love a bauble and when you add great service to jewelry I am sold!  ParaGlam is a great combo of those rope bracelets and sparkles.  You can see all of her designs HERE and use code thanks to save 15% off your purchase and tell her Grove Gal K sent you!  I love supporting other small businesses who offer great service!

5.  Faux Candy
How great is it to eat something that is good for you and feel like it is a treat?  I am in LOVE with Luna's new Honey Pretzel Peanut bars.  They are the perfect salty sweet snack or I eat one for lunch with a piece of fruit.  If you see me on the street, I will most likely have one in my bag!

If you post a Friday Five, please leave me a comment with your blog so I can check it out!

Thursday, September 13, 2012

30 Days In...

Today marks day 30 of construction on our house and what a month it has been! Those of you that read the blog know we are in the process of remodeling our house.  The project is a big one and we are blessed to love our builder and are amazed at how much they have done in 30 days!

This week has been one of decisions....and purchases.  Mr. G and I love to figure out how much we can save so we can justify all of our little extras (his involving guns or electronics and mine have been sconces or fabric) as FREE.  It has become a sort of game for us over almost 10 years of marriage and now three major remodels.  What can I say, we love a good project, as long as we don't have to do the work ourselves!

I am declaring this week the week of Birkin handbags...yes plural.   NO, I did not go purchase multiple Birkins during a construction project, but I have chosen to envision a nice burnt orange calfskin, a good everyday neutral and a basic black one.  Now my Birkins are not the Hermes variety anywhere but my in my head.  In reality my Birkins are Kohler chrome and oil rubbed bronze faucets and shower heads, toilets and pedestal sinks, but call me crazy, I just cannot get excited about a toilet as much as a handbag!

A lot of you have emailed and asked about where I have purchased our house stuff from which leads me back to our family GAME.  We keep a running list of how much the project is costing and how much we have saved along the way.  This week we saved $2,200.  I am NOT JOKING on all of the above.  At least that is how much more we would have spent if we purchased everything at Home Depot.

Instead I spent about 10 minutes searching the Ebates websites for building supplies and hit the jackpot.  We ordered everything from Faucets Direct so in addition to saving the $2,200, we also are getting cash back in our Ebates account.

I am NOT being compensated for this post, but I am a big believer in not paying more than I have to for anything.  I realize that somethings do not go on sale and I am the first person to support small businesses.  I will not purchase shoes from kate spade when I can support my friend E's and purchase the same Kate Spade shoes from her store, The Shoe Hive.

In this case, I just thought it might be easier to do a post instead of answering the same email question over and over, which I promise I do answer email, but this way I can also answer anyone else who may have been wondering the same thing.

This is not my first, and won't be my last, I suspect, post on Ebates because I am HOOKED!  I thought for years it was a scam and no one would actually get money back.  Then I thought it would take too much time.  Now I realize that once you make it a habit to go to their site and click through it adds up!  I now average around $150 cash back a quarter or $600 a year!  See all of those pennies really do add up!  So if you have been on the fence about joining, just JOIN!  It took me a few months to get into a routine of going to my account first, but now it is habit and I consider my checks from Ebates FREE MONEY.  So while I cannot purchase a Birkin with my Ebates checks, I can still get a day at the spa every quarter for doing what I would have done anyway.

So my decision for next week is paint colors and purchasing beds...if you have any favorite shades or furniture stores PLEASE share!

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Say Cheese!

Today is the day of our best sale of the season and you are already keeping us busy!  Starting today through October 8th ALL of our flat folded and attach your own photo holiday cards are 25% off plus you get your choice of FREE return address printing or FREE return address stickers with code SHOL25!

The hardest part might be narrowing your selections down to just 1 card!  If the SALE isn't enough for you, we have another reward.  From now through October 15th when you order 100 cards or more, tag  us on Facebook with a photo of you how you plan to address your cards and your monogram and we will send you a FREE pair of our engraved sunglasses!  I mean if you need to stay up late addressing, no one at Starbucks needs to know how bad you need your Egg Nog latte!

We LOVE that our clients think outside the box.  One of our best customers ordered THESE cards today for her daughter's high school graduation and was able to take advantage of the sale.  She put her senior picture on one side and the details for graduation weekend on the other.  Score one for organized moms!

Another client used THIS design with a photo of her family in their Lilly best from the beach this summer!
I am always love to receive cards with multiple photos and an update on what's been going on.  THIS card is a great design to highlight each member of the family and the back of the card give you plenty of space to update friends and family on your 2012!

The start of the holiday season always makes me reflect on the past year and 2012 has been a great year at the Grove, our new site, new products, but most of all we are blessed to have clients like you and we cannot wait to see what you have in store for your holiday cards this year!

We are going to attempt Christmas photos at the Grove this weekend, but we aren't holding our breath as it always seems to take a few attempts.

Friday, September 7, 2012

Friday Five

In my continuous quest to simplify aspects of my life, I am always on the lookout for new tools.  I have found a few apps lately that have made life so much easier!  Some of these are geared towards the minnies and some are just for me!

1.  Cozi

There are 2 versions:  the free one and one with a yearly subscription of $49.99.  Cozi is a family scheduling program where you can assign each family member a color.  It has been LIFE changing!  Mr. G's assistant puts all of his meetings, travel, etc in, I add in all of mine as well as the minnies and have set it up where it texts both of us when the minnies have a sporting event, lesson or appointment.  You can download the app HERE.

2.  Postagram

I LOVE this.  You can literally send a postcard from your phone with the photo of your choice.  What's even better is that the photo pops out of the card!  You can join HERE.

3.  Artkive

I am one of those people that doesn't like clutter.  I do not save ticket stubs and I have been battling mom guilt at the thought of not keeping the minnies artwork, but it literally needs it own room.  Cue a late night internet search and Artkive is now on my phone and iPad and I am thrilled.  You simply snap a photo of each piece of your child's art and at the end of the year you can create a photo book of all of their artwork, including the date they created it on.  It takes less than 5 minutes each week and now I only save the extra special stuff.  The best part...the app is FREE for a limited time.  You can download it HERE.

4. myPantone

This app is $9.99, but I LOVE it.  Think that HUGE Pantone deck of colors on your phone.  I realize that shades might be slightly off, but this has been a lifesaver during construction.  I have been able to match fabrics, compare paint colors and on and on.  If you are about to take on a big house will WANT THIS.  You can find it HERE.

5.  Luxe Room Planner

This app is FREE.  Essentially you just plug in your room dimensions and pick your furniture and this app let's you see what your room will look like BEFORE you make that big purchase.  SO if you have been wondering if that sectional sofa will be too big or the television will be too small, this app is essentially you room Goldilocks and will get everything just right.  You can download it HERE.

SO, what are your favorite apps?

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

Artsy or Nerd?

Remember the art crowd and the nerdy crowd from high school?  I cringed at how high school seems to classify everyone in to a group. Well these two "groups" have one thing in common:  good shoes.  By that I mean ballet flats and loafers!

Now if you think this post is going to be about how I am scaling back, well you clearly haven't been reading long!

I am a sucker for ballet much so that I am afraid to count them.  I have a plastic tub full of winter ones in suedes and tweeds, a soon to be packed up summer tub of linen and raffia and my collection that I wear year round....Revas can go with anything and they take up no space in a suitcase! Since Revas never really go on sale, I always order mine through Ebates so I get cash back.  I consider it my 3.5% discount!

Last year I purchased a pair of Tory Burch Eddie flats and while I love them, they wore out in no time flat!

So when I saw these adorable suede flats from Boden, their tween line Johnnie B to be exact for 25% of the price of a pair of Tory Burch Eddie flats I had to put them in my cart.  Last weekend I received an email from Boden that all items are 20% through tomorrow so I finally purchased my cart.  My flats were only $36.80!  Unlike tween clothing, it seems tweens can have big feet as the flats came in my usually sold out size 9's!

Until last fall I thought my loafers days, like my school uniform were behind me and I would only be seeing them on Mini K's feet.  Tory Burch then struck again with a pair of black loafers similar to these that I purchase last fall.  I wore them ALL THE TIME.  They also came in a red, but they sold out before I could purchase them.

When I saw that Boden had a red loafer this year I knew I had to have them.  Here is a little tip:  Boden made pretty much the same loafer, one in the women's catalog and one in the Johnnie B section.  The only difference I can tell is the price!  I took advantage of the 20% off sale and ordered the tween version for a mere $54.40.

Shoes this fall may be my fountain of youth!  Even though I may not weigh what I did in college, I am channeling my inner tween when it comes to shoe shopping!

In case you didn't receive the email from Boden for 20% off, you can save 20% off your total purchase with FREE shipping and returns through tomorrow with source code:  DDUS

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

Fashion Night Out

We couldn't let Fashion Night Out come and go and not participate!  If you follow us on Facebook then you already know one of our surprises!  We will be giving away one of our monogrammed carryalls!  Just like us on Facebook and leave a comment on our page letting us know which color bag and monogram you would like if you win.If you want to stack the odds in your favor, share our giveaway on your page and let us know for a second entry!

You can find all of our carryall choices HERE.  We are also adding a bright orange color this week!

Since only one person will win the carryall, we wanted to do something that EVERYONE could enjoy!  So starting today for 1 week ALL sunglasses will be marked down to $30!!!!!!!!!  We figured every fashionista who stays out a little late, might like to go to Starbucks under cover the next morning! If you have had your eye on our engraved sunglasses, this is your week!  The sale price will expire on Friday night at 6pm EST.

Saturday, September 1, 2012

Good Things Happen In 3's....

I have been out of town for my day job for the past 8 days!!!!!  For those of you that have placed orders at the Grove don't worry...everything is still shipping out on time...I have just been burning the candle at both ends.

I realize that most normal people are not doing posts at 9pm on a Saturday night, but we have been glued to the start of college football season ALL day.  If you have heard the voice of a toddler screaming TOUCHDOWN, it would be Baby C!

Since I titled this Good Things, I must share my 3!

1.  Happy News!
My dear friend A just got engaged today!  I could not be more happy for her and had to start the celebrating my mocking up her new monoram!

2.  College Gameday!
Mini K woke up this morning and said, today is Gameday, we should wear orange!  While Mr. G did not attend a football school, I have made sure to raise 2 little Longhorns!  So both Baby C and Mini K were dressed in orange today!  College football season to me is the start of fall and while it was in the high 80's today I couldn't help but think that hopefully soon we will need sweaters and boots and some fall shopping.

3.  The Holidays are coming!
If you are a fan on Facebook then you know Mini K and I had our first official candy corn sighting of the year!  You know how I ALWAYS share a good deal...well today, I have 3!

1.  Charmed
I am a BIG fan of charm bracelets and was given a charm from Planet Jill with a photo f Baby C and Mini K.  What I love about her charms is that you can get them in sterling silver, 14k white gold or 14k yellow gold.  You upload the photo of your choice and the photo becomes part of the charm.  These charms have been seen on the necks and wrists of Jennifer Garner, Maria Shriver, Ricki Lake and Cindy Crawford.  The charms themselves are a great price, but when I saw this deal I had to share.  The PJ necklaces, bracelets and charms make the BEST gifts for moms, friends, daughters and grandmothers so I thought some of your might want to start your holiday shopping.

You can purchase a $100 gift certificate to Planet Jill for $32 right HERE.  Just enter code LaborDay2012 at checkout and it will bring your total from $40 down to $32!  It gets better, when you then create your photo gift at Planet Jill, if you share it on your Facebook page you can get FREE shipping.

2.  Holiday Cards
I know it's early, but a lot of you are clearly organized!  We are doubling your order for FREE on all personalized holiday cards until September 10th!  If you order 50 cards with return address printing, we will send you 100!  I have loved watching the beach photos come in and must admit, I am always envious when I open a holiday card to see a tan person in the cold of winter.  While a lot of you have submitted photos, a lot of you have ordered from our selection of cards where you attach your own photo later!  A client added a note in the message box that she was going to have a card addressing party complete with gluesticks!  I love cards with texture and depth and have been known to take a great photo off of a card and stick it in a personalized frame and give it as a hostess gift at a later date!

You can see all of our cards on sale HERE.

3.  The Look For Less
We have all seen J.Crew's bubble necklace, complete with its $150 price tag.  I am sure we have all seen the sellers on Ebay that will sell you the necklace for less but take an entire season to actually ship it to you!  I have discovered a happy medium, same quality, super fast shipping and how does $14.99 sound!  I ordered a couple of these for myself and a couple to give as gifts this holiday season.  These necklaces come in a LOT more colors than the ones shown below and can be ordered HERE.

I often get emails asking for help coming up with wording or packaging for invites, gifts and notes so I thought  I would share a few ideas for this necklace.

Congratulations on a new job or engagement:  We are bursting with happiness for your engagement/good news:  wrap the necklace in tissue, put it in a cello bag, and tie a bottle of bubbles to the cello bag and attach your card.

Sip N See:  I always like to take something for the mom as well as the baby.  You could do the same packaging and say we know you are bursting with love for your new bundle!