Monday, January 26, 2009

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The Spunky Monkey

It's almost Valentine's Day and if you are anything like me, you are probably scouring the internet for some great items for your kids. I have the perfect place for you, The Spunky Monkey has everything from Clothing to Bath Time and even great Valentine's Day Gifts and Accessories!

If you and your little Princess love bling, than you will surely fall in love with the Double Heart Swarovski Converse Shoes or the Valentine Heart Swarovski Converse Shoes .

Your daughter can also show her love for Daddy with her blinged out "Daddy's Girl" Crystal Tee!

At The Spunky Monkey, you can also find tons of things that aren't holiday related. Some of my faves are:

The Double Heart Initial Crystal Tee

Tres Chic Organic Diaper Cake

Bling Sweet Hearts Diaper Wipes Case

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

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Merchant Moms

When I decided to open MarieLynn Boutique on the web, I was overwhelmed by the thousands of Web Site Hosting Services that are available. I looked through many of the companies out there, and walked away even more confused and overwhelmed. Where could I find an easy to use, affordable service? All of these companies used techie terms and I found myself googling the meaning to these words way too often.

Then I came across Merchant Moms. Here was a site who used words and terms I actually knew the meaning to! They even had a demo site, so I could try my hand at this whole new world of selling my products online. After making my decision to join Merchant Moms, I chose the Basic Plan, which happens to be Merchant Moms best seller! Why wouldn't it be? It's only $12.99 each month, which if you do the math, is less than $0.50 a day!

So here I was with a great Web Site Host, I registered my domain, and I even had a free e-commerce shopping cart. Now what do I do? I uploaded the pictures to my site, but there is a box here for me to input a Meta Title and Description. What the heck is a Meta Title?!? So I joined the Merchant Moms community, which is also free. I read through the forums and all of the posts from fellow online business owners. That is how I came to know Sherri Owen, who eventually took over Merchant Moms after having worked for the previous owner as a Tech Support.

Sherri is my hero, not only did she give me great advice on what I needed to do to get started, she explained it in a way that even I understood. When I asked Sherri to describe Merchant Moms this is what she said, "Merchant Moms offers a complete package that includes web site hosting, domain registration, and an e-commerce shopping cart site builder designed with the (WAHM) Work At Home Mom (and Dad) on a budget in mind. This whole package allows a person to be able to build their ecommerce website from their internet browser and not have to download a complicated program to their computer. Accounts are set up so fast that people can get started building right away." She also stated that, "Merchant Moms was founded to fill a need - an easy ecommerce system for anyone. We wanted people to feel empowered by their own creations, to have control over their own web site rather than having to pay (often very high fees) for someone to do it for them and wait for it to be done. Is it work? You bet it is, but it is something that anyone who wishes to do, can do. They simply need to use the tools provided, and feel free to ask for help when needed, the help is here."

Sherri would also like for you to know that, "We pride ourselves in having a phenomenal customer support team and a wonderful network of women that are willing to help one another reach their goals to succeed. We invite you to read some of our testimonials that are a testament to this. There is never a charge for support or training. The support desk is available for technical questions, the forum for simpler how-to questions, and I do answer the telephone. It's possible that you may hear background noise when you call -- it may be a daughter who is still learning not to interrupt, or very talkative and funny birds. But, I always take the time to spend with you and address your questions.
I have personally been a work at home mom for seven years or so, and wish it for anyone who also wants it for their families. It takes dedication and patience to work for yourself, but so very worth it all! " Although I've never had to call Sherri, I have found myself posting a question on the forum at 3am on a Saturday night and getting a quick response! Where else can you find friendly, patient, and knowledgeable women at 3am?

I definetly think that choosing Merchant Moms to start MarieLynn Boutique was the best decision that I made. I encourage all men and women who are looking to open an online business to check out Merchant Moms. Try out their demo, ask questions. I guarantee that you won't find anything else that can even compare to the type of professionalism, knowledge, and support that Merchant Moms provides.

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

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How To Choose Quality Books For Your Children

Do your children enjoy storytime before bed? Are you tired of reading the same old story just different characters? Are you looking for books targeted to young children that actually contain substance? If so, please read this article written by Heidi Rosenberg. When you are finished, check out her website, Barefoot Books. They are having a Winter sale that ends February 2nd.

How to Choose Books For Children

By Heidi Rosenberg

When purchasing books for the lovely children in our lives the highest priority should be to seek out books with meaningful content. Try to avoid poor quality and commercialism.
Go back in time when my generation (children of the 70's) and older were growing up. Almost all the books were good quality books, with great content. I am sure you still remember some to this day. In the 80's two things happened, big publishing houses and mass retailers! Because of this profit margins became the driving force for the production of books. All of a sudden books became based on TV cartoons, video games and general commercialism.
So getting back to the question, how do you choose good quality books for children when there are so many books out there?
1. Seek out books that you remember from your childhood. (House that Jack built, Jack and the Beanstalk, Little Red Hen, Three Billy Goats Gruff and many more)
2. Look for new books that will build on important values for your family. 3. Avoid books that will take the child back to the television or computer.
4. Give your child good quality books. 5. Read to your child and enjoy good quality time together. Books with music CDs are a great way to enjoy a story.
Barefoot Books, a small independent company that started in 1993 by two working mothers, Nancy Traversy and Tessa Strickland has the vision and goals to publish and share books, gifts and arts that promote children’s love for learning, independence of the spirit, multiculturalism and protection of the environment. Barefoot Books products include award-winning books, music cds and colorful artworks that appeal to children and all children at heart.
About the Author
Written by Heidi Rosenberg I became an independent stallholder for Barefoot Books in September 2008. I have two young children and we love reading together. Being an independent stallholder has given me the opportunity to stay home with my children but still earn a little bit of spending money. We love the books; they have such great artwork and fantastic stories and many of the books have facts for the reader in the back.

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

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TuTu Onesies

MarieLynn Boutique now has TuTu Onesies available!

These TuTu Onesies are absolutely ADORABLE!

Choose your favorite onesie color and tutu color to get your own Custom Couture TuTu Onesie!

MarieLynn Boutique's TuTu Onesies come in an assortment of colors, choose from: White, Blue, Pink, Yellow, Brown and Red.

Then you can choose from an assortment of tulle colors to complete your TuTu Onesie.

MarieLynn Boutique TuTu Onesies are available in the following sizes: Newborn, 6 Months, 9 Months, and 12 Months.

Sunday, January 11, 2009

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2 Sweet Sisters

Have you been searching for Designer Bedding and High End Children’s Furniture? Are you ready to make-over your child’s room, but you’re tired of the same old thing? If so, then you have to check out 2 Sweet Sisters!

2 Sweet Sisters was founded in early 2007. Carin, the owner of 2 Sweet Sisters, was home on maternity leave after having two twin girls. Not ready to return back to work, she and her husband decided that running an Online Children’s Boutique would be a great way to allow Carin to stay home with her girls.

2 Sweet Sisters has so many products to choose from! Whether you are looking for Clothing/Accessories, Cribs, Gifts or D├ęcor, you are sure to find what you are looking for at 2 Sweet Sisters!

Some of my favorite things at 2 Sweet Sisters are:

Baby Lola Crib Set

Princess Cottage

i’coo Targo Mocha

One of the many things that set 2 Sweet Sisters apart from the crowd is the section “Just for Multiples". Where you can find an array of items, just for multiples!

After browsing the site for a few hours...yes I said hours! I think I may have narrowed down a few designs for K's new room. It really is hard to choose just one! 2 Sweet Sisters has so many tantalizing products, you are sure to find what you are looking for.

Thursday, January 8, 2009

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Russia...Here I Come?

A good friend of mine recently invited me to go on a trip with her to Russia. She will be gone for over a week, over Valentine's Day weekend. D doesn't want to go because, "He just isn't interested." He agreed to take leave from work to stay home with K, if I wanted to go.

Now, of course I want to go. I mean, the whole trip will only cost about $500.00! My friend is originally from Russia, so she knows the language and area very well.

My only concerns are, being away from D and K for so long. I know a week of being away from D, I can handle. We've already gone through one deployment. But I haven't spent more than a few hours away from K since she was born.

One of my New Years Resolutions was to 'get back to who I am.' Before I met D and had K, I was miss independent. I did what I wanted, when I wanted. I was the girl who went on random road trips to various parts of the country with NO money and NO plan. Obviously, I can't do those things anymore. But a week away from responsibilities and work would be great.

It will be a nice little adventure. I would much rather experience this new adventure with D and K, but he isn't all that interested.

So I think I'm going to go. I won't stay a whole week though, maybe just a few days. D is just concerned about me traveling back on my own. How sweet of him to be so concerned. You know, before I met D, I wouldn't have even THOUGHT about the risks involved with traveling alone in a foreign country. Maybe I've grown up?

I guess I can say, I have a lot to think about. I also need to get a VISA and make sure my passport is good to go. Here n Europe you don't need a passport to travel inside the European Union. But, I'll definetly need one in Russia.

Monday, January 5, 2009

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Snuggle Puppy's

This is the perfect website for all of us dog lovers! Snuggle Puppy’s has a wide range of goodies for our furry friends. The hardest part is choosing just a few gifts for our pooch. But why stop there? Snuggle Puppy’s prices are so incredibly affordable that you can pamper your puppy all you want, without breaking the bank!

Now, I just wish I knew about this site when I had my dog, Gizmo. When we first got her, she would cry all night long, it was really heartbreaking to hear. If we would have had a Snuggle Puppy, Gizzie would have had a much easier time sleeping at night. These Snuggly Puppy’s have a ‘real feel’ heartbeat and they even warm up! What is even more amazing is that each Snuggle Puppy has a bottle pocket that allows you to stick a pet bottle inside for puppy nursing.
A few of my favorite items are the:

Diva Dog Apparel

Tattoo Art Colection of Collars, Leads, and Harnesses

31 Flavors Square Dog Bed

With Snuggle Puppy’s around, there is no need to shop any where else! Snuggle Puppy’s has: Apparel, Doggie Treats, Shampoo and Spa products, and Pet Carriers...just to name a few!

Snuggle Puppy’s also has Free Shipping on All Pet Tags in the U.S, AND you can receive 10% off of your order over $50.00. Use voucher code: newyear at checkout!

Cat Lovers Don’t Fret, Snuggle Puppy’s has goodies for your feline as well. Check out Snuggle Puppy's line of Pet Tags and Snuggle Kitties for your kitty!

Friday, January 2, 2009

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Welcome 2009!

It's a new year! There is just something about a new year that makes me optimistic! It's a fresh start, a new beginning. A chance to take leave behind all the bad and start over. Hopefully a little wiser, more mature, and with bigger goals in mind!

I've already begun my to-do list of 2009! I actually started on 29 December 08. I'm leaving 2008 and all of it's ups and downs in the past! Here is what I have planned for 2009!

Personal Life:
Spark up the romance- I want D and I to get back what we had in the beginning. The laughing and joking. Oh and the makeout sessions, boy do I miss those! Who says you can't make out with your hubby?

No smoking- Yep, I'm a smoker! I quit, no problem when I got pregnant with K. Then when D returned from his deployment, I started up again. It's a horrible nasty addiction that makes me freeze my butt off (I won't smoke in the house or around K), plus what kind of example am I setting for K? With all of it's nasty vices, that small little cancer causing stick has so much control over me.

Travel More- We leave in a few months...and while I can't wait to leave Germany and NEVER come back. I will miss the travel. So, I plan to take one out of country vacay each month! Greece here I come!

Business Life:
Organization- Now that I have my own business room, I need to organize it.

Time Management- I need to set time aside for work and family. I need to complete one task before I move onto the next. I'm great at multi-tasking and I work better under pressure, but I get so carried away with work that I forget that I have an amazing family who needs me.

Smart Advertising- Now that I've pinpointed my target consumer base, I need to market and advertise wisely. Those small ad fees add up to one gigantic total that could have been better spent elsewhere.

That's what I have now, I'm sure I will continue to add to the list as time goes by. Why don't you shoot me an email in three months and see how if I'm doing good on my 'resolutions'.