Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Choosing a Guest List

Before I had children, I thought the perfect first birthday involved parents, sibling, grandparents and baby. I envisioned an intimate affair of the closest family gathered around our dinning room table.

Roll tape 10 years later and cue the laughter. My children's first birthdays cannot be any further from that vision. Our "Event" (as I've been told I'm no longer allowed to refer to it as merely a party) will feature friends, family flying in from all over and even some of our neighbors gathered, not in my dinning room, but at our community clubhouse (I'm praying we will fit).

I'm beyond excited to have so many people love our little girl enough to want to share this day with us. I would never ever want to exclude anyone who wants to be there.

That is my style as a Latina: the more the merrier. Anyone who wants to come is welcome. We'll sit people in the pool if we need the space and we'll break out the sandwiches if we start running out of food.

As passionate as I feel about my position, I know it doesn't work for everyone.

I've also had wonderful times at intimate parties where the child gets all the attention and doesn't have to fight kids off their presents.

What size is right for you?
It's all a matter of choice.

Ask yourself these questions:
What type of family are we? Quiet and reserved or loud and crazy?
Will my child feel comfortable around a large group of people?
Who are our closest friends?
Am I inviting people out of obligation or because I want them to be there?
Where do I draw the line? Co-workers? Neighbors? Relatives?
How many people can I afford to feed?
Is it more important to me to have a nice meal or to include everyone?

These questions should get you started in the right direction.

Whatever you decide, make sure you are making the choice and not allowing money to make the choice for you.


Friday, June 25, 2010

Party Style

Yesterday, I had a conversation with two of my closest friends about their babies' birthday parties coming up this weekend. Each of them is so unique with their own personal style, which is also different than my own as I too prepare for my daughter's birthday in the next few weeks.

One is planning something simple with fun colors and no theme. The other has been hard at work all week on the most stunning details for her Farm themed affair (which I can't wait to blog about...)

There is so much to think about when planning a party: size, budget, guests, theme, colors, cake, food, decorations, venue, music, photographer, favors, etc... It can be pretty overwhelming!

The more I thought about it, the clearer it became that whether you welcome them or dread them, parties are an inevitable part of Parenting.

Here are some guidelines for throwing fabulous parties with little or no pain to you (and your wallet):

1. Parties are fun!!!
Have a positive attitude about the celebration. After all, you are celebrating another year of your child's life with your loved ones, what's not to like about that?

2. Do YOUR best.
I have a personal philosophy that if it's worth doing, it's worth doing well. This doesn't mean I have to out-do Martha. It just means, I need to do the best I can to honor my kids. The idea of "throwing something together" makes my heart hurt. Even if you are pressed for time or have a tiny budget, you can put together something your kids will enjoy.

3. Be creative.
Your child is into animals but you can't afford to bring in a petting zoo (don't worry, it's out of most people's budget). How about asking a friend to bring their furry pet? Think outside the box and you can save a lot of money.

4. It's in the details.
Truth be told, kids will have a blast running through a sprinkler on a hose while eating popsicles in the front yard because THEY make life fun. They don't need much. But they also understand when you put effort into doing something for them and they feel special when you do. Small details like including a favorite color, favorite food, handmade crafts and their favorite character add a special touch.

5. Start a Tradition.
One of the most fun parts of FAMILY is tradition. Create a tradition with your kids that you do on every birthday. Some of my friends have the tradition of baking the cake together as a family. Those are the details children will remember and treasure for years to come.

6. Plan as far ahead as you can.
The earlier you start to plan, the easier it will be. Spreading out purchases little by little instead of all at once, will make it more affordable. Also, if you are finished planning ahead of time, you have more freedom to actually enjoy your child on their day rather than running around worrying about last minute details.

7. Relax and Enjoy!
As far as I know, no one is giving out awards for the best party. There is no party police that will take you to jail if your party fails to meet a certain criteria. Your child will not resent you for not hiring a clown, neither will they love you more if you rent out the circus. Do the best you can within your budget and without stressing yourself.

Happy Planning to You!!


Sunday, June 20, 2010

Giveaway Winner

Congratulations to Jennifer,
winner of the 4th of July TuTu Giveaway
from my friends at SwagGrabber!!!

Saturday, June 19, 2010

Empowering Daddies

This month, my adoring husband was featured as a "Hottie Dad" in the Gainesville Giggle Magazine, a charming little local family magazine in our community. The article (seen here on p.19), honored a few deserving men for their hands on involvement with their families as well as their good looks.

I'm really glad my husband was chosen. He is truly the most amazing Daddy!
As I reread the nominating email I sent the staff, I relived the moments and thanked God for my husband's heart.

Last week, after reading the article a precious expectant mother approached me and said her husband told her he hopes she feels the same way about him once their baby is born.

You see, I believe every man wants to be an amazing Daddy and while it's up to them to become one, there is a lot we can do to encourage them or stifle them.

Here is a list of 10 things we can do to empower our men to be better Daddies:
  1. Ask him what kind of role he wants to have as a Daddy. Listen to his answer! My husband WANTED to feed our newborns, which meant I had to pump milk. Did I prefer to just nurse? Of course! But I wanted to honor his wishes, so I pumped daily. He did the 11pm feeding, which allowed me a little extra z's too.
  2. Communicate and compromise about everything. New parents both have a heavy load. There is caring for the kids and caring for the home, but there are also other responsibilities men normally tend to internalize such as finances, safety, and the future. Invite him to share his heart with you and figure out how you can share those responsibilities.
  3. Expect him to help. I'm not sure why, but somewhere along the way we were taught that men sit on a recliner with the remote in one hand and a beer in the other while we do all the work. Not so. Even guys who start out that way end up feeling a lot more pride in themselves when they are asked to help. Don't expect parenting to be "mothering" until the child is old enough to throw a ball. Expect him to change diapers, swaddle, get up in the middle of the night, and feed the baby.
  4. HIS way may not be YOUR way. He's definitely not going to do things exactly like you - and that's ok. Let him do it his way.
  5. Withhold criticism. Nothing kills a desire to help more than constant criticism. Criticism also includes going behind him and re-doing what he has just done. Be an encourager!
  6. Get out of the way! Allow him space to develop as a Daddy. He will never change a diaper if you never let him try. Don't look over his shoulder inspecting everything he does. Have confidence in him. He may be able to teach you a thing or two.
  7. Don't be afraid to ask for help even if he's watching a sporting event. Tell him what your needs are and ask him for help. You'll be surprised at how easily he comes to the rescue. Things have changed for both of you. You may need him to stay home from that fishing trip or wait until the kids are down to go on a run. Whatever you need, ASK! He won't know what you need unless you tell him.
  8. Speak positively. Give him genuine compliments every chance you get. Focus on the positive and on what he is doing well.
  9. Appreciate him. The more you thank him, the more he will WANT to help.
  10. Respect and honor him as a man. A huge mistake women tend to make is to think of their husbands as 'one of the kids.' Your man is not one of the kids! He is your spouse and life partner. Your nurturer, provider, and the love of your life! Speak to him and OF him with honor and respect; especially in front of the children, no matter what their age.
I just love everything about families! While many families are being destroyed today, my prayer for you is that you enjoy a healthy and happy family by loving and honoring one another.

Happy Father's Day!!!!!

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

New Mini-TuTu Party Set

Get ready to PaRtY
TiTi's TuTu's Style!!!!!
I am so excited to finally be able to share this with you! This week, I had my dream of putting together a Party Set come true.

The collection, pictured below, is the product of some ideas from an old college girlfriend putting together her niece's first birthday in addition to some other sources of inspiration, including BabyGAP. Their Animal Graphic Tank bodysuits served as the springboard. The South Florida girls are going to have so much fun in these!

*Available for a Limited Time*
Introductory Special:

1 Embellished Mini TuTu for the Birthday Girl
1 Matching Hair Bow for Birthday Girl
3 Additional Party Favor Mini TuTus for her gals individually wrapped and labeled
1 Matching Photo Frame Handmade by TiTi's TuTu's
Complimentary Personal Shopping Services to find the perfect top

Includes shipping!!!!

Saturday, June 12, 2010

What I love about my clients...

The number one reason this business and blog even exist is because of my clients.

Don't get me wrong, there was a vision and a calling on my life to unleash my creativity while sharing my heart through writing. Still, it took people asking me to sell my tutus to finally get me to stop dreaming and start doing.

Six months have passed and I am just marveled at all that has happened.

I've had the privilege of meeting some of the most precious women in various stages of the adventure we call Parenting. I've prayed with some, cried with some, and celebrated with many.

Single mothers working hard to raise their children alone. Pregnant mothers afraid and clueless about the future. Mothers of children with disabilities. Stay at home mothers needing a listening ear. Work-at-home mothers with an ability to juggle worthy of a Vegas show. Girlfriends looking for a way to brighten someone's day. Thoughtful. Selfless. Detailed. Passionate. Women.

What I love about every single one of them is the desire to give their all to whatever they do and the joy that they do it with!

These women have taught me so much about life, parenting, and business that I often find myself telling my husband, "If I don't ever sell another tutu, it'll be ok because the interactions I have with these women is worth much more than any amount of profit."

What I love about my customers is:

...they let me be creative.
...they always LOVE their finished product.
...they tell all their friends about me. Almost all my business is from word of mouth recommendations.
...they value my work beyond what I charge.
...they trust me.

I just want to thank all of you whom I've had the privilege to serve. Thank you for allowing me to grow as an artist and for jump starting me onto some amazing ideas.

There is a new album on my Facebook page for customer photos. If you have photos of your little Princess in one of my tutus, I'd love to see your photos and share them with my friends. Please email me on Facebook or on the tab to the right.


Tuesday, June 8, 2010

NEW TuTu Mini

Introducing the NEW TuTu Mini!
fresh, fun & affordable...

Still packed with over 50 yards of tulle, satin wrapped, and adorned with a stylish ribbon, the TuTu Mini is perfect for hot summer days.
Comfortably shorter, but still as full.
At $15, the Mini is a MUST for every little girl's wardrobe!

Friday, June 4, 2010

Last Call!!!

The Last Day to put in your order for a 4th of July Tutu, NEW TuTu Mini, or NEW TuTu Dress is
June 12 for out of town orders,
June 15 for local customers.

Here is another piece from that collection:
Show your pride in this traditional red, white, and blue TuTu honoring the US Flag with 13 stripes on one side,
{7 red & 6 white} and blue tulle adorned with silver stars on the other.
The waistline is wrapped in blue satin ribbon for a final touch of Americana class.
The Flag style {pictured as a full tutu} can also be ordered as a Mini or a Dress.