Posts in the ‘Fun Books’ Category

Blurb Holiday Gift Guide & Sale

Thursday, October 3rd, 2013

Can you believe that the holidays are right around the corner? I am still trying to hold on to the freedom and sunshine of summer, but I must admit that I am loving the lovely red leaves on the liquid amber trees outside of my kitchen, and all of the fabulous fall boots in the stores. Before we know it – winter will be here…

Rather than waiting to the very last minute to shop for holiday gifts, I think it might be my year to get personal, unleash a little creativity, and create one-of-a-kind gifts for my family.  I know my parents and in-laws will love receiving something special and this is the weekend to get started…


Ready for a little inspiration? Check out Blurb’s 2013 Gift Guide which is full of fabulous gift ideas – from children’s books, photo books and cookbooks too. Don’t think you have the creative juices to design a book all on your own? Not to worry….The Gift Guide is also an instruction guide for how to make a beautiful Blurb book gift for anyone in your life. They will teach you everything you need to know. It’s so much easier than you think! Get a head start on your Holiday gifts by creating your own Blurb books and save 20% through 10/7/13 with code EARLYBIRD20.

Photo Book Sale

Thursday, September 5th, 2013


I will be the first to admit that planning beyond tomorrow just seems impossible these days. I have friends who are making plans for the Christmas holidays while I am still trying to enjoy the end of summer. And even though I don’t have a clue where my family is headed for Thanksgiving – I do know that Blurb has a ‘Thank You’ Sale going on right now. It is time to download your favorite summer pictures from your cell phone and create some fun photo books to give to your favorite family and friends as a little special thank you gift this holiday. Add a few special words including a special memory or a simple note of thanks to complete your custom photo book. Another fun idea would be to collect a bunch of your family’s favorite Thanksgiving recipes and include a few crazy pictures of your cousins and grandparents and create a keepsake everyone will treasure for generations to come. Make your books (hard copy or electronic) this weekend so you can take advantage of this special Thank You promotion and you can cross one more thing off of your to-do list. Enjoy 15% OFF your order now through Monday, September 9th, 2013.

Oh wait – I almost forgot – the promo code you will want to enter is TAKE15. Let me know what kind of book you end up making!

Photo credit: Familjen, I Tove Freiij, Blurb

flattenme Personalized Books & GIVEAWAY

Tuesday, July 16th, 2013


I have always loved giving and receiving personalized gifts. As much as I love my “C” necklace and my monogrammed tote bags, I think personalization is a particularly fun idea when you are shopping for babies and children. I know how easy it is to grab a box of Legos at Target on your way to a birthday party (while you are keeping your fingers crossed that you are picking the one box that the birthday child doesn’t already have!), but maybe this year you can consider buying custom, personalized books for all of those birthday parties. What do you think? They are just a click away…

A month ago I stumbled upon a company called, flattenme, and I was immediately intrigued. I just loved the unique name and was so curious to find out what they did. (Evidently I was a little late to the party as Orpah and team have already featured flattenme’s products in one of her gift guides. At least I know I am in good company…) When I checked out their site I read a fabulous story about how the idea for the business came to be and I loved their focus on imagination, inspiration and gifts of the heart. I knew this would be a perfect company to feature on Sweet Peas & Stilettos.

Owl Always Love You Carl arrived in the mail a few days ago. It is written by Robyn Spizman and illustrated by Erica Leighton.  After my son’s bath, when he curled up on the couch in his favorite blue stripped Hanna Anderson pajamas, I pulled out the book as a little surprise. His eyes lit up when he saw his name on the cover. “How did you do that Mommy?” It was a sweet bedtime story that was perfect for my 6 year old. With every turn of the page, he heard me read his name and he smiled in delight.


They also offer personalized books with photos. I love the Super Dad book and its humorous pictures. I knew at that moment that these high quality books with illuminating images would make wonderful gifts for kids of all ages. Who wouldn’t love receiving a customized superhero book? (even if dad looks a little silly in a cape…)

And while you are shopping at flattenme – take a look at these hysterical personalized water bottles. Such a fun way for your kids to keep hydrated all summer long…

JULY GIVEAWAY – If you want to WIN a FREE copy of Owl Always Love You that you can customize for your own child, simply let me know on Twitter or Facebook (see icons on top right of page). The winner will be randomly selected from entries and will be notified on July 31, 2013 after 12 noon, PST. Please note, the book if free and you will only be responsible for a nominal shipping charge.

I want to personally thank the team at flattenme for my copy of the book and for sponsoring this giveaway!

Calypso St Barth & Dot Complicated

Tuesday, April 23rd, 2013

calypso st barth

Last week I was thrilled to attend a pre-opening party for the new Calypso St. Barth store at Stanford
Shopping Center in Palo Alto. It was a festive evening of pretty clothes, pink bubbly, delicious cookies
and an entertaining panel conversation featuring media mogul in the making Randi Zuckerberg, pinner
extraordinaire Christine Martinez, and super blogger Erica Chan Coffman of Honestly ….WTF.


Let’s start with the clothes. The new collection at Calypso St. Barth was absolutely wonderful. Lots
of very wearable clothes perfect for sunny vacations and lazy weekends. There were also a number
of pieces that I thought would be great for going out to dinner with friends. I loved the neutral colors
and attention to detail. The designs are all inspired by travel and the arts so each piece has a unique,
international feel to it. Step foot in the store and you will immediately want to start planning your
summer vacation…

dot complicated

If you haven’t heard of Randi Zuckerberg yet, I am certain you will very very soon. Randi is a busy working
mom who happens to be bright, enthusiastic and incredibly likable. She and her team have recently
launched a new venture, Dot Complicated. Their weekly newsletters are full of insightful ideas for
managing your wired world. Technology is changing our lives, our families and our relationships in so
many ways and Dot Complicated is here to help us all navigate our way through it all. Sign up for their
newsletter today and keep your eyes open for Randi’s book which is due out later this year.

Power Pinner and Author, Christine Martinez, was a sheer delight. She happens to be one of the most
popular pinners on Pinterest with millions of followers. She is also the author of The Complete Idiot’s Guide to Pinterest Marketing and writes her trendsetting blog Miles to Styles, named after her pup Miles. Christine was really inspiring because she seemed to be so genuine and true to herself. She has always followed her heart and her passions and has created a successful and fulfilling life for herself along the way.

randi-zuckerberg-Christine Martinez-calypso-event

2012 Family Photo Book

Sunday, December 23rd, 2012


So all year long you have been snapping photos with your phone and having so much fun trying out every Instragram filter. I don’t want you all to end up like me with 1000s of photos that never see the light of day again. When you have a little downtime over the holidays, you can take some time to pull together a family photo book to recap your favorite moments for 2012. I have a few friends who actually create a separate book for each of their children and one for the grandparents too. Luckily Blurb makes it super easy.

So take some time and download all of your 2012 photographs, including vacations, birthdays, and special occasions so you can put all of these wonderful memories into a keepsake book. From now through January 7th, 2013 you can save 15% on your entire book order with code BOOKS15OFF.

And one other fun idea – at Blurb you can also create 2013 planners full of your favorite photos! For more ideas and inspiration go to:

Personalized Books for Kids

Monday, October 8th, 2012


Every now and then when I am reading aloud to my son I will change the name of the character in the book to Carl. In that split second he spins his head around and his eyes light up in excitement with a sprinkle of disbelief. My son get a huge thrill hearing a story about himself or a story about a favorite character that shares his name. He loves it. Needless to say I purchased the entire collection of Alexandra Day’s Carl books!

I am thrilled to let you all know that Chronicle Books now offers personalized books so your kids can see their names in print. There is the Personalized Princess Book for your little princess, a Personalized Speedster Book for your little racer, and big brother and big sister options too.


Chronicle Books has also launched the option of personalized dedications in a number of their top selling children’s titles. You can upload a photo of your child and write a little note that will be printed in the book. How fun! Not sure what you would write? They have some sample messages to help. I think I am going to order a personalized copy of Dinosaur Bones for my little guy.

A little tip – Shop early for Christmas!

30% off Chronicle Kids Books

Custom Photo Books

Wednesday, August 29th, 2012


It is time to take all of your fabulous summer photographs and create cool personalized photo books. You can’t let your cherished memories just hide in your phone forever! There are so many great options available to help you create a perfect book (or two!). If you have the time and the creativity, you can create fully customized books all on your own, or if you want a little help, many services offer an array of simple templates so all you need to do is select your photographs and they do all of the heavy lifting for you. Love that!


The samples pictured above are from the brand new photo books available at Tiny Prints using their ‘Kids Quotes‘ template. They have tons of templates to choose from – I am sure you will find one that captures your style and shows off your photographs.

You certainly don’t need me to tell you this – but yes – Photo Books make awesome gifts. Not sure what to get your parents or in-laws for Christmas? Without a doubt, the best gift I ever gave my father was a photo book full of images of my son visiting his grandfather’s home town. Two or three years have passed and he still keeps it right next to his bed.

Below is a list of some great services where you can go and create your own custom photo book. These all come recommended by me or my friends. I have also tried to track down as many promo codes, coupons and discounts as I could find too. Hope the savings help!

Blurb – Save 15% On Your Entire Order (Code 15OFFBLURB)

MixBookSave 50% on Mixbook’s Biggest and Best Photo Books! or Get free shipping at Mixbook

MyPublisher The perfect gift for everyone in your life. 40% off photo books from MyPublisher

Tiny Prints– 10% Off Your Tiny Prints order in September – Use Promo Code 10SEPT

Maybe we can all get organized and make our books sooner than later and tuck them away until the holidays. Wouldn’t that be nice….


Tuesday, May 15th, 2012


I have no problem admitting that I love watching Real Housewives of Beverly Hills. It is sheer entertainment. I am not a huge fan of all of the bickering (hence why I skip out on some of the other Housewife shows) but after a long day, it is fun to get to control the remote for 1 hour to see what these girls are up to. If you are anxiously awaiting for the next season to air, you can grab their books to get your RHOBH fill.

Lisa Vanderpump recently released, Simply Divine: A Guide to Easy, Elegant, and Affordable Entertaining. Lisa certainly knows how to throw a party so there is no doubt she knows what she is talking about. Though she is remarkably elegant, I love her sense of humor. Her writing clearly brings out her charming personality and her frank honesty. I think that is why so many people love her. The book is full of simple tips (that really do make a difference when you have a party of any size at your home) and many recipes as well.


Kyle Richards has certainly risen above the title of ‘Paris Hilton’s aunt’ and has clearly made a name for herself (and for her gorgeous hair). Kyle’s book,Life Is Not a Reality Show: Keeping It Real with the Housewife Who Does It All is simply Kyle telling it like it is. She tells you what type of shampoo she uses (because thousands of women actually want to know!), how she keeps her family happy and what life is like in Beverly Hills. Remember – this is not intended to be award winning journalism – it is just a little lighthearted fun for people who love RHOBH and Kyle’s open style.

And hopefully in a few short months, we can find out what the housewives are up to in season 3…

Book Cover T-Shirts

Thursday, April 19th, 2012

Charlotte's Web Womens T-shirt

Out of Print celebrates the world’s great stories through fashion. Their products (t-shirts for men, women and kids, totes, coasters & more) feature iconic and often out of print book covers. The t-shirts are even treated to feel soft and worn just like a well-read book. Love that! And for every product they sell, Out of Print donates one book to a community in need through their partnership with Books For Africa. Help spread the joy of reading today.

Presenting Tallulah

Tuesday, November 8th, 2011


Presenting . . . Tallulah by Tori Spelling

I had no idea how many celebrity moms had written children’s books until I started to do a little research. From Tori Spelling to Madonna, from Maria Shriver to Geri Halliwell (Ginger Spice) these moms have lent their famous names and creativity to create fun books for kids. Take a peek and see if your favorite celebrity mom is an author too.