Thursday, October 28, 2010

Holiday Eating Tips

Anyone who knows me knows that one of the most important things in my life is eating.

I love to eat.

And I am always first in line at the buffet table.

I got an email from my sister-in-law today with these Tips for Holiday Eating, and I felt that I owed it to you all... my loyal readers... to share.

{photo credit}

1.   Avoid carrot sticks.
Anyone who puts carrots on a holiday buffet table knows nothing of the Christmas spirit.  In fact, if you see carrots, leave immediately.   Go next door where they're serving rum balls.
2. Drink as much eggnog as you can. 
And quickly.  It's rare.  You cannot find it any other time of year but now. So drink up! Who cares that it has 10,000 calories in every sip? It's not as if you're going to turn into an eggnog-alcoholic or something. It's a treat. Enjoy it. Have one for me. Have two.  It's later than you think. It's Christmas!
3. If something comes with gravy, use it.
That's the whole point of gravy.  Gravy does not stand alone. Pour it on. Make a volcano out of your mashed potatoes. Fill it with gravy. Eat the volcano. Repeat.
4. As for mashed potatoes, always ask if they're made with skim milk or whole milk. If it's skim, pass.
Why bother? It's like buying a sports
car with an automatic transmission.
5. Do not have a snack before going to a party in an effort to control your eating. 
The whole point of going to a Christmas party is to eat
other people's food for free. Lots of it. Hello?
6. Under no circumstances should you exercise between now and New Year's.
{I would add to this: or anytime after New Year's}
You can do that in January when you have nothing else to do. {Or never.}
This is the time for long naps, which you'll need after circling the
buffet table while carrying a 10-pound plate of food and that vat of
7. If you come across something really good at a buffet table, like
frosted Christmas cookies in the shape and size of Santa, position
yourself near them and don't budge.
Have as many as you can before
becoming the center of attention. They're like a beautiful pair of
shoes. If you leave them behind, you're never going to see them again.
8. Same for pies. 
Apple,Pumpkin, Mincemeat. Have a slice of each.
Or if you don't like mincemeat, have two apples and one pumpkin. Always have
three.   When else do you get to have more than one dessert? LaborDay?
9. Did someone mention fruitcake? 
Granted, it's loaded with the mandatory celebratory calories, but avoid it at all cost. I mean, have
some standards.
10. One final tip: If you don't feel terrible when you leave the party or get up from the table, you haven't been paying attention. 
Re-read tips; start over, but hurry, January is just around the corner.

Now that you are done reading my blog for the day... come on down to the Coast Hills MOPS Boutique and keep us company.

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Why I Shop at Nordstrom

Did you think I had forgotten about the You're the Boss Series???  Well, I kind of had.

We just have two tips left, and I promise that I will complete the series.  

In preparation for #10, Have Excellent Customer Service {then we will go back to #5, which I skipped}, I thought I would like to to hear about your experiences with customer service - the good, the bad, and the ugly.

So please leave a comment, and tell us about an outstanding {in a good or a bad way} experience you have had {you don't need to mention any names}, and I will post some of the best ones tomorrow.
To inspire you, I will tell you why I shop at Nordstrom.  

If any of you have ever had the pleasure of shopping at Nordstrom, then you know why they are notorious for excellent customer service.  There are even urban legends about old ladies returning tires to Nordstrom.  

I shop at Nordstrom a lot.  I buy most of Nathan's work clothes there, and I always shop the Anniversary Sale for Beau's school clothes.  I find that, contrary to popular belief, their prices are actually fairly competitive with any other store.  But even for a few extra bucks... it is worth it to me to give them my business.

Let me just give you a few examples of experiences that I have had at Nordstrom:

A couple of months ago I purchased a pair of work shoes for Nathan.  They were not cheap.  {Keep in mind that he works at an office where a suit and tie is required every day.}  They were the same shoes that he had worn before... it was just time for a new pair.  I did not realized when I purchased them that they came in different widths.  When he wore them, he complained about how tight they were, but we both just figured that they were new and needed to stretch.  For a month he wore those shoes and came home with sore feet everyday.  The next month we went back to Nordstrom to purchase another pair in brown {the first ones were black} and realized that the reason his black shoes were so tight was because they were a B width, and he needed a D width.  The Manager of the Men's Shoe department did not even hesitate to exchange the shoes he had been wearing for over a month for a brand new pair in the correct size.

Speaking of shoes... one time I purchased a pair of ballet flats from Nordstrom.  I loved them, but the lining kept bunching up at the toes, and it was driving me crazy.  One day I was at the mall shopping, wearing those shoes, and I decided I couldn't stand it anymore.  I went into the Nordstrom shoe department, hoping that they could re-glue it for me, and they literally took the shoes off my feet and gave me a brand new pair!

And while we are on the topic of shoes {I do actually buy things other than shoes at Nordstom} the other day I returned a pair that I had worn several times because they were unbearably uncomfortable, and they took them back and gave me cash, with no questions asked.

That is why I shop at Nordstrom.  And will always shop at Nordstrom.  And have built my customer service model around Nordstrom.

Now tell me your stories!

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Need to Shop?

Since there are only 60 days left until Christmas,
I thought I should let some of you local folks know about where you can come see us
Much Ado About You gals over this holiday season!

So, here's where we will be over the next few weeks {and why we will be working every other day of those next few weeks to catch up with our orders}:

This Thursday and Friday, October 28th & 29th  - 9am to noon
Coast Hills MOPS Boutique
5 Pursuit, Aliso Viejo

Monday, November 8th - 7pm to 9pm & Tuesday, November 9th - 9am to noon
Crossline Fall Boutique
23331 Moulton Parkway, Laguna Hills

Friday, November 12th - 4pm to 9pm & Saturday, November 13th - 9am to 4pm
The Queen Bee Market
Del Mar Hilton, San Diego

Wednesday, December 1st - 12:30pm to 4:30pm
Oso Grande Elementary School
Holiday Boutique
30251 Sienna Parkway, Ladera Ranch

Come see us and introduce yourself!

Monday, October 25, 2010

Sew Weekly... Sew Adorable!

This weekend while I was catching up on some of my favorite blogs,
I found a new favorite!  
Mique from 30 days had a great posting about birthday parties in which she highlighted this amazing post by Mena Trott of Sew Weekly.

First of all... the posting:

Mena posted about the Sound of Music birthday party she created for her daughter {who is named Penelope, btw... which is going to be our baby's name if it is a girl, which makes me like Mena even more}.

You have to check out the entire posting to see all the amazing details, but let me just say that those adorable curtain outfits ended up on all the guests!

While gushing over this fantastic party {and trying to figure out how I am going to convince my sister to copy it for my niece's next birthday} I checked out the rest of Mena's blog.

Sew Weekly was started to document Mena's journey of creating a totally handmade wardrobe.  Every week she makes herself an outfit, with the goal of having "a closet filled only with clothes that I have sewn myself (with a few exceptions)" by the end of 2010.  She has fantabulous vintage taste {and is totally adorable}, and each week posts her outfit and gives a little description of the project.  My favorite part is that she also rates whether or not she would wear it again.

These are some of my favorites from her collection:

Isn't she adorable???

Check out her blog for yourself.  Tell her I sent you!

{I would like to note that this posting is totally unsolicited.  I don't know Mena, and she doesn't know that I am doing this posting.  I just really like her blog.}

Friday, October 22, 2010

Flowers for Friday

Look what Nathan came home with last night:

Now, before you go yelling at your husband about never doing anything nice for you, you should know that these came from a conference at his office.  I get a table arrangement every year after this conference.

It still makes me giddy.

They smell amazing, and are making my office an even happier place.

Today is going to be a good day at Much Ado About You.

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Wanted: Someone to Make my Life Bearable

I got 8 hours of sleep last night.  8.  I feel like a new woman.

So now I can seriously tell you that I need an Assistant.  I have many employees who are amazing and make it possible for me to continue taking orders when we have 68 in the queue.  But I need someone that can take over the busy work of running a business and allow me to actually make calendars.

I have already gotten several emails from interested parties, so I thought I should formally let you all know that I am serious about needing an Assistant.  And here's what I am looking for:

First of all, it needs to be someone that is local and could actually come into my office in South Orange County, California.

I need someone that could come Monday - Friday for about 2 to 3 hours a day.  Somedays may be a little more... some may be a little less {especially during our slower season}.

You would be responsible for:

  • Printing out orders from Etsy
  • Confirming orders with customers
  • Following up with customers that we need more information from
  • Entering the orders in our database
  • Updating the database everyday with what was completed the day before
  • Tracking orders
  • Answering emails {this means you need to be able to compose a legible email that is free from spelling and grammatical errors.... I am picky about this}
  • Printing calendars for open orders
  • Printing tabs for open orders
  • Tracking supplies and placing ordering as necessary
  • Preparing orders for shipment

It is all quite simple stuff... it is just the stuff that gets me very bogged down and stuck at the computer.  I think that someone else could probably get done in 2 hours what takes me 5, because I get interrupted a lot.

Now, here are the less-official requirements:

  • You must have a good sense of humor!  We like to have fun in this office and being okay with teasing and sarcasm is a must.
  • Jennifer says that you cannot have an annoying laugh.  She holds "Annoying Laugh Veto Power".
  • You need to be confident enough to answer easy questions on your own, but smart enough to know when you can't.
  • You cannot be too sensitive for yelling.  Sometimes I yell.  Mostly at computers and printers and rarely at employees... but it happens.
If you are interested, or know someone that might be, please send me an email at  Then be patient with me while I try to find the time to respond to you.

Who wouldn't want to join this motley crew???

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Delerious... is that even spelled right???

I honestly don't remember the last time I was this tired.

I am running on very little sleep and many hours of work in the last two weeks.

Running your own business is hard work.  

It doesn't help that Nathan is simultaneously having the busiest two weeks of his year.  We have both been working until 11 o'clock at night the last several days.  

I have so many things that I want to tell you about... but I am just too tired.

I am going to go get some toothpicks now to prop my eyes open, and get back to work.

On a related note... anyone local looking for a job???  I need an Assistant.  

Warning:  I am super controlling, a detail-oriented freak, and don't pay very well, but we have fun and the hours are flexible.  

I need someone that can answer emails, track orders, order supplies, and generally help me get away from my computer and over to the work table to do what I love.  My thought is that it would be a great job for a college student.  If you or someone you know is interested, please contact me.  

If it takes a while for me to respond to you... you will understand why I am looking for an Assistant!

Friday, October 15, 2010

Much Ado About Calendars!

The new calendars are here!  The new calendars are here!
Check out my shop!!!

We had an fantastic night last night at Much Ado About the Holidays!!!

Someone came up to me at the end of the night and said, "Wow, Emmy... you have an amazing team!"

I couldn't agree more.

My girls rocked it last night!  We had the highest sales ever for a single event!
{I am using lots of exclamation points, I know... but it really was a great night!  See.  There's another one.}

Here are some pics that Sandi was so kind as to send my way {since I never picked up my camera the entire night}.

Here's my amazing team.
{Left to right, top to bottom} Beth, Sarah, Marlo, Jennifer, ME, Donna, Holly, Brooke, and Hayley.

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Bloodshot Eyes

If you see me later today {which hopefully you will because you are coming to Much Ado About the Holidays}, don't make fun of my bloodshot eyes, dark circles, and the fact that I can't put a sentence together.

I have been up since 2:50am and I cannot sleep.

I am headed back to bed now... at 5:15am to sleep for the next hour until my alarm clock goes off.

Please reward my insanity by coming to my boutique tonight.

Monday, October 11, 2010


I just reduced all the calendars left in our 
2010 Blowout Sale to $25!!!
Visit my shop to check it out.
Wanna get a sneak peek at the new line?
Much Ado About the Holidays is just three days away and you're invited!
Nathan and I drove up to Carmel for the weekend to go to a wedding.
It was a very strange weekend.

I'm just going to tell it to you in pictures.

This was my view from the front seat on our way up.
Nathan was driving.
I was cutting out logos and ribbons and such for the new catalogs.

This is what happened when we got to the huge hill right before Camarillo. 

Luckily we made it to Camarillo without me having to get out and push.

This is the pitch black, super narrow, ONE LANE at times, dark, windy road that we ended up on thanks to Google maps.

This was my complimentary continental breakfast on Saturday morning in the hotel.

Who knew that Northern California beaches are g-o-r-g-e-o-u-s.
You can't see them, but there were three separate pods of dolphins out there!

This is the one decent {yes, this was the decent one} photo that I got at the wedding.

I am going to be careful with my words here to protect the innocent, but let's just say that this was the strangest wedding I have ever experienced.  A friend and I decided that the best word to describe it was mayhem.

From the beginning of the ceremony, where the officiant started talking about his husband, to the after party in a pow-dunk bar with a near bar brawl... it was different
At least I got to experience Have Nagila for the first time.  That was the highlight.

Thursday, October 7, 2010

His Mother's Son

Don't forget all in-stock calendars are now 25% off.
Visit my shop to check it out.
Wanna get a sneak peek at the new line?  You're invited.
Beau is kind of a Mama's Boy.
Okay, he is really a Mama's Boy.  And this Mama loves that.

Yesterday he went home from school with his friend Ryan.  The night before, I noticed that he was in the scraps drawer in my office and using the Cricut, but I really didn't think much of it.  He's crafty.
Like I said... he is a Mama's Boy.
Last night at Back to School night, Ryan's mom Donna showed me what Beau had been working on:

He is a child after my own heart.

Donna's favorite part was the "you are won of my 10 best friends"... sorry Ryan... you didn't make the top five apparently.

But my heart truly melted when I saw his "My Me Cube":

I love that he sees "adopting" as something he is doing, and that it makes him interesting.

Not sure what the "4" is for... he is 7.

His favorite book is the Bible... {tear}.

I love my little mini-me.

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

My Brad and Taylor

Don't forget all in-stock calendars are now 25% off.
Visit my shop to check it out.
Wanna get a sneak peek at the new line?  You're invited.
First of all, I would like to say how very much I enjoyed reading all your comments on yesterday's post.  Anytime I mention reality TV on this blog, it sparks a great dicussion.  Keep commenting... I think we will revisit this topic again next week.
You may have noticed that it has been a rough couple of weeks around Much Ado About You.  I am feeling the pressure of the upcoming season, and apparently so are the machines in my office... we are all raising the white flag.
I have really been trying to just roll with the punches, and trust that God has a specific plan for this business that I know He has provided for me.

He has reminded me again and again over these last few weeks of His provision, and even through all the challenges... we have had some great accomplishments.

Last week Jennifer and I were able to finish all the samples for the new line.  That was good news.

On Sunday I decided to try to photograph these samples for our website.  That was bad news.

I spent several back-breaking hours setting up shots, trying to hurry before I lost my natural lighting.  But when I uploaded the photos onto the computer... well, let's just say that my editing skills are not that good.

I was so discouraged.  So frustrated.  So defeated.  Anyone that has an online business can tell you that if your pictures are bad... you will not sell your products {no matter how super fantastically cute they are in real life}.

Several years ago I met a man named David Capron of eMotion Portraits while doing a boutique.  His photography blew me away, and I booked a session for Beau and me to surprise Nathan for Father's Day.

All three of us did another session with David a couple years later.

When I started my business and was doing custom invitation design I asked David to photograph some of my samples.

He did an amazing job, and made me feel very professional!

So Sunday night, on the verge of tears, I emailed Sylvaine, David's better half, to beg for yet another favor.

Monday morning, when I was again on the verge of tears {you're sensing a theme here, right?} over my third broken printer in less than a month, I got the sweetest email... a shining beacon of light.  Sylvaine said of course they would help me... Tuesday morning!

Again, God's provision!

So Brooke and Jen and I packed up all our samples and headed over to David's studio yesterday morning.  They just moved into a beautiful new studio in Costa Mesa.
It made us feel super official... on a real live photo shoot.
Brooke kept saying that she felt like Brad from The Rachel Zoe Project, so I am now referring to Brooke and Jen as Brad and Taylor.

We got everything all organized and ready to go...

and sweet, sweet David sat in his studio and patiently shot frame after frame {after frame} of my many, many samples.

I cannot wait to see the results... David and Sylvaine are sending me a disc!

If you live in the area, and are looking for a beautiful, unique Christmas card photo you must check out David's work.
He is super easy to work with, has a cool British accent, a beautiful French wife, and an awesome studio.

If you have younger kids that you have difficulty getting to sit still for a photo, eMotion is perfect!  The day that we did that first shoot with David, I went with my friend Amber and her son {who was probably only about 18 months old at the time}.  The boys just ran around his studio playing and laughing while David captured their true personalities.  It was a fantastic experience.  Without tears.

Contact Sylvaine at (714) 642-9021 to book a session.
You won't regret it.
{And you can send me a thank you note and flowers when you get your gorgeous pictures back that you will treasure for the rest of your life.}

P.S.  David and Sylvaine did not ask me to write this post.  They actually asked nothing of me in return for their amazing favor.  That's just the kind of people that they are.