Friday, December 21, 2007

Job Description for Parent

I'm not a big fan of chain e-mail but this catchy one arrived in my box yesterday and really make me laugh.

Mom, Mommy, Mama, Ma
Dad, Daddy, Dada, Pa, Pop


Long term, team players needed, for challenging,
permanent work in an
often chaotic environment.
Candidates must possess excellent communication
and organizational skills and be willing to work variable hours, which will include evenings and weekends
and frequent 24 hour shifts on call.
Some overnight travel required, including trips to
primitive camping sites on rainy weekends and endless sports tournaments in far away cities!
Travel expenses not reimbursed.
Extensive courier duties also required.


The rest of your life.
Must be willing to be hated, at least temporarily, until someone needs $5.
Must be willing to bite tongue repeatedly.
Also, must possess the physical stamina of a pack mule
and be able to go from zero to 60 mph in three seconds flat
in case, this time, the screams from the backyard are not someone just crying wolf.
Must be willing to face stimulating technical challenges,
such as small gadget repair, mysteriously sluggish toilets and stuck zippers.
Must screen phone calls, maintain calendars and
coordinate production of multiple homework projects.
Must have ability to plan and organize social gatherings
for clients of all ages and mental outlooks.
Must be willing to be indispensable one minute, an embarrassment the next.
Must handle assembly and product safety testing of a
half million cheap, plastic toys, and battery operated devices.
Must always hope for the best but be prepared for the worst.
Must assume final, complete accountability for
the quality of the end product.
Responsibilities also include floor maintenance and
janitorial work throughout the facility.


Your job is to remain in the same position for years, without complaining, constantly retraining and updating your skills,
so that those in your charge can ultimately surpass you


None required unfortunately.
On-the-job training offered on a continually exhausting basis.


Get this! You pay them!
Offering frequent raises and bonuses.
A balloon payment is due when they turn 18 because
of the assumption that college will help them
become financially independent.
When you die, you give them whatever is left.
The oddest thing about this reverse-salary scheme is that
you actually enjoy it and wish you could only do more.


While no health or dental insurance, no pension,
no tuition reimbursement, no paid holidays and no stock options are offered;
this job supplies limitless opportunities for personal growth, unconditional love,
and free hugs and kisses for life if you play your cards right.

Forward this on to all the PARENTS you know, in appreciation for everything they do on a daily basis,
letting them know they are appreciated
for the fabulous job they do...
or forward with love
to anyone thinking of applying for the job.


Wednesday, December 19, 2007

Fantasy Fudge

Ok, I'm just enjoying the treats so much, I have to pass along one more recipe: Fantasy Fudge

3 c. sugar 7 oz. marshmallow creme
¾ c. margarine 1 c. chopped nuts
2/3 c. evaporated milk 1 tsp. vanilla
12 oz. semi-sweet or bittersweet chocolate chips

Stir together margarine, sugar and milk. Bring to boil. Boil 5 minutes over medium heat. Remove from heat and stir in chocolate until melted. Stir in remaining ingredients. Pour into 9 x 9 or 9 x 13 greased container. Cool at room temperature. Enjoy!

Tuesday, December 18, 2007

Fat Pant Truffles

Another reason I've got to freeze the cookies and get them out of sight: Fat Pant Truffles.

Prep Time: 30 min
Total Time: 1 hr 30 min
Makes: 3-1/2 doz. or 42 servings, one truffle each
1 pkg. (1 lb. 2 oz.) OREO Chocolate Sandwich Cookies, finely crushed, divided
1 pkg. (8 oz.) PHILADELPHIA Cream Cheese, softened
2 pkg. (8 squares each) BAKER'S Semi-Sweet Baking Chocolate, melted
MIX 3 cups of the cookie crumbs and the cream cheese until well blended. Shape into 42 (1-inch) balls.
DIP balls in melted chocolate; place on waxed paper-covered baking sheet. (Any leftover melted chocolate can be stored in tightly covered container at room temperature and saved for another use.) Sprinkle with remaining cookie crumbs.
REFRIGERATE 1 hour or until firm. Store any leftover truffles in tightly covered container in refrigerator.

Monday, December 17, 2007

Can't stop eating those cookies

Six dozen homemade holiday cookies (from Saturday's cookie party) in our house is very, very, very dangerous. I might just have to toss them in the freezer to make sure I can still fit in my clothes end of week. Hope you enjoy these recipes as much as we do!

Molasses Cookies. The recipe makes 36.

2 cups flour
2 teaspoons baking soda
1 1/4 teaspoon ground ginger
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup unsalted butter, softened
1 cup packed brown sugar
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
1/3 cup molasses
1 large egg
granulated sugar for rolling

Sift together flour, baking soda, ginger, cinnamon, cloves, and salt. With mixer, beat butter and brown sugar together until light in color and texture. Stir in oil until well blended. Scrape down sides of bowl, add the molasses and the egg and beat until well blended. Stir in the flour mixture until well combined. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerated 3 hours or until firm. Roll tablespoon size pieces into balls and then in granulated sugar. Place on cookie sheet about 2inches apart. Sprinkle tops with more sugar. Bake 9-10 minutes at 350 until the center surface is barely dry. Cool on sheets 5 minutes and then transfer to rack.

Friday, December 14, 2007

Sneak Peek at our next Pumpkin of the Month

Too cute! Here is our upcoming Pumpkin of the Month, little Maddie. Her mom Holly included this very warm note, "I love Hand-Picked Pumpkin clothing! Our little girl, Maddie, received a playsuit with coordinating hoodie and a top with matching skort as gifts and these outfits soon became our favorites!! It was so nice to have a few pieces in her closet that were unique and made just for her! The fabric accents on the clothes were so trendy and fun, but what I loved most was the texture of the clothing. Each piece was incredibly soft and I loved that Maddie had such soft fabrics against her newborn, delicate skin. I highly recommend Hand-Picked Pumpkin clothing – the details and quality of the fabrics coupled with the ability to customize each piece makes Hand Picked Pumpkin a fabulous business!! "
Look for little Maddie's picture in a few days on our testimonial page.

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

HPP featured in Texas Family Gift Guide

Many thanks to Texas Family Magazine for featuring Hand Picked Pumpkin in the Holiday Gift Guide. The limited edition Jessica shirt dress and Jesse overall pant are featured on page 58 of the November/December issue.

Tuesday, December 11, 2007


Perhaps it is no surprise that on the aforementioned entry below I found myself only able to cross off items 1 and 2. That was a tall list. It starts again today, minus 1.

It is not even 9 am and I already find myself procrastinating. Surfing New York Time's The 53 Places to Go in 2008 is so much easier than finalizing the Hand Picked Pumpkin 2008 budget.

Escaping to Tunisia (in my head) is so easy (especially when the weather report is 30 degrees and freezing rain).

Friday, December 7, 2007

Friday's To-Do List

This week I came across Sasha Cagen's To-Do List Blog and found it completely facinating to read other people's to-do lists.
Here is what I'm working on today.
1. Send out cookie party email reminding my friends to bring recipes with their treats.
2. Process orders
3. Decide on photos for Spring/Summer 08 website updates
4. Review and approve 2008 budget
5. Research for fall 2008 packaging
6. Weekly accounting tasks
7. Start and finish Christmas shopping
8. Call bakery to order boxes for next Saturday's cookie exchange

Might as well stop at No. 8 as I'm not sure how I'm going to make it even 1/2 down this list.

Wednesday, December 5, 2007

All wrapped up!

Here's a peek at how the new contoured burp clothes will be packaged and delivered. Folded and wrapped with white satin ribbon and hangtag. What a fun and stylish treat!

Tuesday, December 4, 2007

New for Spring 08

A sneek peak into Spring at Hand Picked Pumpkin.
Contoured for superior fit, our modern burp cloth makes a wonderful new baby gift or just because treat. Hand sewn from 100% soft woven cotton and lined with absorbent terry, the cloth measures 17 1/2" x 11" and comes finished wrapped in white ribbon. The burp clothes will be sold either as a single or set of two. Coming early spring 08.

Thursday, July 26, 2007

Jerry Seinfeld and Sheryl Crow

Date night: Tuesday night Pete and I attended a NML company show in Milwaukee starring Jerry Seinfeld and Sheryl Crow. We had a blast.

I have never laughed harder in my life! Seinfeld was awesome. He covered a wide variey of topics ranging from politics to Starbucks to marriage. Tears were literarly streaming down my face as he talked! If you are able most definately see his show!

The beautiful and very talented Sheryl Crow played after Seinfeld. She was clearing working the crowd! And we hope to see her again if she is ever in town playing at Ravina or Millenium Park.

Monday, June 4, 2007

Another entrepreneur in our family

Look who else is an entrepreneur in our family. (I should mention dad is one too...) Brandon and his friend set up shop in our front lawn for their first lemonade stand of the season. "If they don't have $1.00 we'll sell it to them for 50 cents." That is a very confident and direct quote from Brandon's friend (and sales partner) Cooper. And about 1 hour into selling they agreed to add another offer to their sign, "free samples of cheese crackers." I guess even 7 year-olds understand how to make a deal sweeter. Total sales for the day= $12.00.

Tuesday, May 29, 2007

Rod Stewart should know about hpp

In the same issue of Instyle mentioned below I also came across this amazing quote by Rod Stewart regarding parenting his son, Alastair. He says, "It seems that my parenting skills have improved with experience," and adds, "I've learned that you've got to just let your children be who they are and celebrate their individuality."
Celebrating each child's individuality is what Hand Picked Pumpkin is all about! (that's acutally part of our boilderplate). Maybe we should send Rod a note of introduction!

Friday, May 25, 2007

Spa treatments at it true?!

As you can see from my favorite places to shop list ~ I love Wholefoods. Well, check-out what I just read in this months issues of Instyle...Wholefoods has a spa in their Dallas store! Sounds like you can check your grocery list at the door and have someone else do your shopping while you relax in their tranquil spa. Sweet! Wondering if they babysit too?! And when will this fabulous option be offered nationwide?

Wednesday, May 16, 2007

Brandon visits mama at work

Brandon, my oldest son frequently joins me in the design studio. He loves to sort thru the trash can of fabric waste. Yes, a bit odd but he is seven and seven years olds love to collect things. So when he joins me in the studio, he collects little scraps of fabric waste and then gets creative (he's a little artist).
He especially loves to use our interlock knit for a variety of projects! I found this little scene last night. Looks like Hans Solo and his gang were outfitted with new cozy little chocolate brown capes! Honestly, I'm not sure about the Storm Trooper. I was not aware that Storm Troopers wore skirts...I'll have to check-in with B on that costume?!

Tuesday, May 15, 2007

My second attempt to start a blog!

So everyone keeps telling me to start a blog. They say "All small business owners have blogs, you should have one too" or "People will love to hear about your life as a busy mom, wife and entrepreneur " or "You've got great stories to share about your kids, your design studio, your kids in your studio, it will be great."

To me, a blog seems like a scary thing. A place where the whole world can read my words. But then again, what is that saying, "unless you try, you'll never know" so here I go!

I have resolved (once again) to start a blog. I hope to share my experiences, thoughts and views on motherhood, fostering creativity and starting and nurturing a growing business.

Welcome to Notions, I hope you enjoy!