July 27, 2011

Guest Post Series: Leighann of the blog "Multi Tasking Mumma"

I am full of laughter, sarcasm, and well intended humour. I am determined,
driven, never backing down, and I always rock the boat. I am of high morals,
integrity, and expectations.  I am fortunate to be supported and endlessly

He is full bellied chuckles, poking fun, and big grins. He is teaching from
love, a full heart, standing up for himself, and always making waves. He
instilled high morals, integrity, and expectations by example. He supported
and encouraged.

I am from a structured home, rules, and an early curfew. I am from a weekly
allowance, natural and logical consequences, and turning this car around. I
am from apologies, warm, comforting hugs, and meaningful I love you’s.
I am from racing home before the street lights come on, begging to have a
sleep over, and no sugary cereals. I am from peanut butter and jam
sandwiches, wash your face and hands, and standing in the corner. I am from
slamming doors.

His is from an honest days work, a sense of accomplishment, and building a
foundation. He is from two hard working parents, a long career in a job he
loved and was good at, and a strong relationship with his siblings.
He is from worrying about his children, staying up till they get home, and
being a taxi. He is from early mornings, breakfasts made, and trips to the
babysitter. He is from forgiveness, follow through, and consistency.

I strive to be a great mother. I want to build an uplifting home around
respect, structure, and honesty. I hope to raise my child with a strong
sense of self, the ability to stand up for herself, and the knowledge that
she can do anything she puts her mind to.

Just like he raised me.

This meaningful post was written by Leighann of the blog "Multi Tasking Mumma".

Note from Bellflower Books:  I have a dad just like this and I am grateful for him everyday:) This post reminded me again of how lucky I am!

July 25, 2011

Etsy Favorite: My Beloved Adoria ~ Origami Floral Bouquets

Wow!!!  I am so glad that one of our Twitter followers referred me to Jessica Morehead's Etsy site My Beloved Adoria. Since a lot of people create Bellflower Books as meaningful wedding gifts, I am always looking for other unique wedding items. I absolutely love flowers and original ideas, so I am beyond impressed with these origami floral bouquets. 

If I were getting married all over again, I would pick these over a traditional bouquet in a heartbeat.  I picture them going beautifully with an extremely creative and eclectic wedding.  How wonderful that instead of spending money on flowers that will quickly wilt and die, you can give yourself and your bridesmaids a lasting keepsake instead!

Jessica puts major thought, love and effort into each bouquet and truly loves to make people happy with her work. 

Her flowers are a work of art.  When you look closely at these photographs it is hard not to be amazed by the details of the various paper patterns, colors and textures.

Make sure to check out her blog to view additional designs...

July 20, 2011

Guest Post Series: Angela of Tiaras and Trucks

Her Love Lessons

She has the kind of beauty that draws children to stop and smile at her, perhaps sensing that she will always, always take a moment to smile back and say hello to any little ones that cross her path.

With her ability to see the joy in simple things, she should have been a camp director.

With her unlimited patience, she should have been a kindergarten teacher.

With her inner strength and refusal to give up on a child, she should have been a pediatric nurse.

But she’s not.

She’s a mom, a grandma, a wife, a daughter, a sister, an aunt, a friend.

With phone calls, e-mails, greeting cards, she keeps in touch, remembering birthdays and anniversaries and acknowledging them year in and out.

When too much time has gone by, she’s the one who gathers our family together reunions and talking and loving and laughter.

She’s my mom.

As a child, I didn’t truly realize her gifts.

I knew she would let me spend hours in the library browsing shelves and choosing books that some moms may have insisted were too difficult for someone my age.

I knew, when I was sick, her hand on my forehead would always seem cooler and more soothing than any other hand in the world.

I knew, when I was a teenager and pushing any of her buttons I could find, she would never raise her voice or lose her temper or let me self-destruct.

That could be annoying.

Now that I am a mother, I appreciate her patience, her calm presence, her unwavering support.

I recognize her endless generosity and selflessness with Abbey and Dylan, and I know she acted the same way with my brother and me, though we may not have known those words or how to thank her at the time.

Even now, unless asked, she is still patient enough with me to let me figure things out on my own, and I’m finally learning to appreciate the millions of times she must have bitten her tongue as I was growing up.

But like any respectable grandma, she’s only given me a few pieces of unsolicited parenting advice: it is always, always ok to comfort a crying child, a little ice cream never hurt anyone, and just love them.

Thanks to her, the unconditional love part has never, ever been in doubt.  I am lucky enough that it’s the only kind of maternal love I’ve ever known.

This post was written by Angela of the blog Tiaras and Trucks

*Note from Bellflower Books:  This post made me cry.  Your mother is the type of mom we all can only hope to be.  I am so glad you wrote this about her.  I hope she reads it:)

If you have someone wonderful in your life that you would like to honor in a guest post, please contact me at kerry(at)bellflowerbooks(dot)com.  This is what Bellflower Books are all about.  Showing people they are loved and appreciated.  These guest posts make my day!

July 19, 2011

A traditional anniversary gift with a twist!

The traditional gift for your first anniversary is something to do with paper.  I can't think of a better way to incorporate paper than by creating a Bellflower Book!

I still remember my first anniversary.  Even though I have now been married almost 9 years, my first anniversary was the most meaningful and memorable.  I also remember struggling with what to get my husband to show him how happy I was with him and our life together.  I ended up getting him a really cliche book about love and some random candles.  It did not make much of an impact.  I wish that Bellflower Books would have been around back then.  Not only would I have had the option to create a truly amazing and priceless gift to give on my 1 year anniversary, I would love to have a copy of that book to reflect on now!  So much changes in 9 years!!!  It would have been wonderful to have a record of the blissful time in our life when we were young newlyweds with little responsibility:)

I was inspired to write this post because of our sponsorship of Project Marriage with blogs Life Without Pink and Mommy Friend.  I love the idea behind Project Marriage and I think a Bellflower Book is a wonderful way to let your husband know he is loved and appreciated on any occasion or anniversary.  I know that in my own marriage, it is when either one of us starts to feel neglected or unappreciated, that things start falling apart.  Creating a Bellflower Book is a great way to show your significant other how much he means to you.  Plus, it is an excellent record of your life together!

July 16, 2011

Etsy Favorite: Articulations Events ~ Eloquence Through Paper and Print

I first met Beth, of Articulations Events, abut 6 years ago when our new baby boys were just about 3 months old.  We met in a play group put together by a mutual friend.  It was wonderful to find out that we had more in common than just baby talk and diapers.  She was, and still is, one of my favorite people to talk to about books, art and current events. 

Beth started this company with her sister-in-law right before her son was born.  She knew she would want to be home with him, but she also needed an intellectual and creative outlet.  As her friend, it has been fun watching her company start small and continue to grow.

They now use only letterpress and offer beautiful stationary and invitations for special occasions such as weddings and birth announcements.  Articulations has also created a line of stationary to use as gifts and gift tags.

Their wedding invitations are my favorite.  They are extremely elegant and unique. 

To see their complete collection check out their website:

Also make sure to check out their facebook page and Etsy site!

July 13, 2011

Guest Post Series ~ Angela Jones of Joneses Keeper

*“No One Like Her”*

There is no one on the planet like my grandma.

Growing up, Granny lived about 500 miles from me in a small city in
Tennessee, but my parents always made sure that we visited her at least
five times a year.  She would always greet me with a hug and a smile, smelling
like a cross between peppermint and Bounce fabric softener, and ask me
how school was going and how I was doing in my extracurricular activities.
One of my favorite parts about our visits would be when she would make me
breakfast.  Everyone else selected cereal or fruit—something easy to fix,
but Granny would prepare a special breakfast consisting of toast with
grape jam, bacon and scrambled eggs (my parents certainly did not fix me bacon
on the regular growing up).  Plus, she would put orange juice in a limited
edition Smuckers Tom and Jerry (cartoon characters for those who know
about Dora these days) jar saved just for me.  Needless to say, I felt so

She continued making me feel special as I got older.  When I graduated
from graduate school, she gave her physician my graduation invitation and
insisted he put it on the patients’ wall next to her picture.

When I got married, Granny gave me the following invaluable advice:  “Own
your marriage, cherish your marriage, and beyond love, remember to like
and respect each other.”

The last time I was at her home, we slept in the same bed (apparently,
 she was also running a bed and breakfast for my cousins who surprised her
 with their presence that weekend) and talked about everything.  Her life (a
 full one), my grandfather (the love of her life who tamed her), her regrets
 (don’t believe in them) and her children (apparently my mother was a
 spitfire—so that’s where I got it from).

I write all this with a heavy heart because right now, Granny is very sick. And I’m sad because admittedly, I haven’t seen her in over a year and we’vespoken much less than we used to.  She told me she understood being a new mom and all, but to me there’s no excuse.

Her illness makes me realize that life, and all the idiosyncrasies with
it, can be fleeting.  And what’s more, it makes me want to continue to record
her history—my history.

To any of you who have cherished memories of elders and family members, I
urge you to take the time to catalogue their life.  Take pictures, record
videos, document birthdays, weddings, baptisms, family reunions.
Scrapbook old photographs and documents;  Prepare a genealogy tree or memory books
with your children so that they learn about the fabric of their
family—the significance behind those who came before them.  Record all the little
things so you can remember them long after their over.  Because at the end of the day, it really is all about the little things.

 *What ways do you cherish your loved ones?  How do you honor your history
with your elders in your family?  Do you take the time to hold those meaningful to you close to your heart?*

This lovely post was written by Angela Jones of the blog Joneses Keeper.

Learn more about Angela by reading her very interesting bio.

*Note from Bellflower Books:  This post reminds me so much of my own grandmother!  A year ago my large extended family worked together to create a Bellflower Book for her full of favorite memories and letters of love and appreciation.  My Grandma looks through the book daily.  It is something we will be able to share with our children and treasure forever!  I agree so much with Angela, it is extremely important to record and memorialize the amazing people in our lives who have given us our history!

July 5, 2011

Guest Post Series: Tell us about someone special in your life

Bellflower Books are all about telling the important people in our lives why they are loved and appreciated.  We decided to do a series of "guest posts" on our blog profiling the important people in the lives of our readers.  Please contact us if you would like to contribute a post.  We are hoping to do with our blog what we have done with our product and encourage people to write the meaningful words they may not always say:)

July 4, 2011

No One Like Her ~ Guest Post by, Alison of "Mama Wants This"

There is no one like her, really.

She is of generous spirit.

She is warm and kind.

She is gentle, yet strong.

She is loving and tender.

She is my mother-in-law.

I know, I am extremely lucky.

I have heard too many stories of nightmarish in-laws.

Of interfering, bossy, unsupportive in-laws.

When I met her for the first time for lunch, she took the hand I extended to
her, clasped it close and said she was thrilled to meet me. She asked all
about me, my family, genuine interest in every word, every smile, every nod
of the head.

When my husband and I got married, she embraced me and told me that we are
now family. She turned to her other two sons and said, "She is your sister

When I told her about my pregnancy, she teared up and told me she was so
happy for me, for my husband. For the next 8 months, she made sure she
cooked me food that nurtured my pregnancy, my health. She knitted blankets,
hats, mittens, shoes, all gorgeous in their miniature form.

When my son, her first grandchild was born, she hugged me, said
congratulations and told me I would make a good mother. She took care of me,
like I was her own. She cooked nutritious meals for me, made me cups of

She showed me how to bathe a newborn, how to get a onesie over his delicate
head, how to swaddle him.

She looked after the baby so I could sleep, take a hot shower that lasted
more than 2 minutes, pumped milk.

Because of her, I now have a few hours of time to myself every day. She and
my father-in-law look after my toddler every afternoon. She thanks me for
that. She sees it not as a chore, or a favor, nor out of necessity. She
LOVES having him there.

She helped me potty train him. She makes him lunch some days, dinner every
day. She makes sure he gets snacks. She takes him out for walks. She makes
him clothes. She's sewing him a quilt.

She does all this out of love. Love for my son, love for her son, my
husband, love for me.

She has no idea how much she means to me. How different my life would be if
I did not have her in it. How different my son's life would be.

I hope that some day, she will know.

This post was written by Alison of the blog Mama Wants This!  To learn more about Alison check out her very interesting bio.

July 1, 2011

Bellflower Books is a Proud Sponsor of "Project Marriage"

A good marriage requires a lot of hard work, so when we were asked to collaborate with two amazing bloggers Mommy Friend and Life Without Pink to help sponsor their Project Marriage Challenge, we couldn't resist!

This month's challenge is to plan an actual "Date Night" with your husband, during which, talk of children is strictly prohibited.  This is something that my husband and I are actually good at.  It is so wonderful to leave our home and focus on just each other for the night.  This may sound silly, but before nights like these I try to read up a bit on current events and other interesting topics so that we can easily engage in adult conversation that does not revolve around children:)

Something else I have noticed that makes my own marriage work is trying my best to make sure my husband feels loved and appreciated.  I am hoping that through our Project Marriage Bellflower Books giveaway, we inspire someone to create a beautiful Bellflower Book full of love, photos and memories.  This could actually be the perfect gift to give your husband for an anniversary, birthday, holiday or "just because".

Make sure to check out both collaborating blogs and participate in this great challenge.  I have learned that my marriage is always a worthwhile place to focus attention.  Being a part of Project Marriage is a fun way to do this!
Blog Design by Mommy Monologues