Author Archives: Elizabeth Kartchner

happy happy

One of my new years resolutions was to send out happy mail to people I love once a month. At first I was going to say once a week but then I settled on monthly. Well guess what peeps…? It’s now September and here I am mailing off some letters! Finally. So I sent out 9 one for each month to play catch up.
Happy mail can lift anyones spirits. I especially love sending notes in vellum bags and envies so you can see what’s inside. Also added Studio Calico stamps and my Dear Lizzy tape.
There are some bills in there but I moved them to the back of the picture for pretty’s sake.

Also making me happy at the moment is listening to the record player I got for my birthday not to mention the vintage records I found in a box in our basement from when I was a little girl. There is also a whole box of Donny Osmond and Osmond Boys records, but don’t worry mom we will not touch those! ;)

Collin picked up a couple more vintage Disney ones (Jungle Book and Bedtime Songs) last night when he dropped up a truck load to goodwill.
The best part of the girls listening to records, when the vinyl has a scratch and skips they think it’s part of the song. So now whenever Avery sings Tomorrow from Annie… “Tomorrow tomorrow… I love ya tomorrow you’re only a… only a… only a… only a… only a… only a…” haha
And last but not least on my happy list today, this dolly.
Have I told you that she took a step!!? It was more like a little scoot but still I was proud. And, yes, our kids are fast walkers.
Have I also told you that she has 4 big chompers? At first she had one buck tooth but the other on caught up. She’s pretty much the cutest.
This picture was taken just before the top toofers grew in. But believe me they are there. (Ouch! bring on the bottles. ;)

I’m in the middle of moving my office back upstairs from the basement. I’m excited. Now back to work. The bigs are at school and I have 2 hours and counting…

Happy day to you!


Would you take a minute and take this survey! It’s just a handful of questions… because I’m curious. And you know that saying, Curiosity killed the cat. Which doesn’t even make sense. I mean, has a cat ever died of being curious? Is that a painful death? ;)

Sorry, bad joke. Okay… just take this survey pretty please with a cherry on top! xo

photo for our Something Splendid workshops site by Jefra Linn & Dress Rosie

a wedding & a butt pinch

Friday night Collin had a wedding video shoot at Sundance and I was lucky to be his assistant. I think my exact title was Assistant to the Videographer. Which meant that I got him drinks when he was thirsty, carried some equipment in glitter heels and was in charge of turning on the mic for the ceremony. Why I was given the most important job of the whole wedding shows the kind of faith this boy has in me. I was literally sweating to death scared that I would mess up my one little task, especially knowing my luck there would have been no record of their “I dos” but alas it was recorded… I better get a promotion now! !

We also counted it as date night so here’s a little he said//she said action.
-Thanks to the Groom’s darling mother technically my date was with a man twice-my-age whose wife couldn’t make it so I got to eat her dinner. Two dates in one night? I still got it. ;)
-I was told by two people that night that Collin looks like:
A.) Matthew McConahay & B.) Bradley Cooper.
-I looked very graceful when one of my heels got stuck between the wood planks on a bridge. Next time I’ll choose the safer route and wear my ski boots.
-Weddings are so romantic. The bride and groom were freaking adorable I couldn’t handle it. I was nearly in tears watching the ceremony… and I didn’t even know them.

Sundance was really pretty. Probably the prettiest ski resort in Utah owned by Robert Redford that also hosts an annual film festival. I didn’t see any celebrities up there this time, except Meryl Streep or it was John Madden, I couldn’t tell. In high school, I went skiing at Sundance and Robert Redford was getting on the chair-lift. I yelled, “What’s up, Bob?” and he looked at me and said, ” Fine.”
Liz got me those sweet new kicks (shoes) that I wanted to try out and they held great traction on the somewhat unfirm grass/gravel pathways. I’ll probably write the 9-yr old kid in Malaysia that made those Nike’s a letter of deep gratitude. Great job, Sanjeet! Anyways, Liz was a great assistant camerawoman. KC was supposed to help me that night, but he had “college” stuff and is all into his edumacation and lurning (LAME). The ceremony was beautiful and I think the video will turn out boomtastic. P.S. Totally pinched my assistant camerawoman’s bum rushing past her to get some shots. I’m a professional, people.
Here’s the wedding interview of the couple that had the audience busting up laughing the whole time, and if you’re into The Food Network and “Cupcake Wars” or you love America and hate terrorists watch this audition tape I made for The Sweet Tooth Fairy (best cupcakes in America/the known world) it’s delightful.

“That’s what.” -He

Collin, out.

Cute Washi Tape from Rhonna’s new site: Rhonna Designs

did you win?

I have a feeling I am going to start to be known as that annoying girl that takes pictures in front of your house. “Hey, that darn girl is out front takin pictures again. Should I let the dogs out?” (Please no!) I couldn’t help it, that sunflower was calling my name!

Here are the winners for the Feeling Lucky Giveaway. (Drum roll please)

Traci Michele: Amazing giveaway! I’d love to win any of these!
Traci (
Bit ‘o Whimsy:
Jennifer Cowan: Those hats are so so cute!

Jo Totes:
Lori Banks: Thanks for sharing these awesome works of art. Love love love the camera bags! Here’s to hoping… :)
Email me if you won!
Promote your site on Dear Lizzy! I have spots available for September:

Back To School Feast

Last night was the night before school started & I thought it would be fun to celebrate with a feast, like my friend Stephanie aka nie nie does. This spontaneous thought struck me only mere hours before dinner. Soooooo, that meant I didn’t have much time to make it not just any typical night but a memorable one before they soar off to Kindergarten and Preschool.
One thing that I loved about my Dad is that he was enthusiastic about traditions. Many of them are still going strong to this day. I’m sure he would definitely approve of this impromptu, new tradition- a feast fit for our back-to-school princesses.

Collin was in charge of the theme and the meaning for this school year. He chose the word Discover and the thoughts behind it were very sweet. He also gave them each a Father’s Blessing. A tradition both of our families did each year before we started school. It’s a blessing to magnify their spirits, filled with encouragement and any added support they need for the year. I remember feeling loved and less nervous… Avery said she felt happy.

Headbands & Clips c/o: Dear Lizzie Boutique // Dresses made by my friend Annie. She has a darling online shop for fabric: Sew Obsessed. She sells all the cute designer fabrics.
I asked them what they wanted for dinner and they said spaghetti! We also enjoyed artichokes, twice baked potatoes (add equal parts mayonnaise & grated parmesan cheese to potatoes for a yummy topping then brown just before serving) garlic bread, lemonade with frozen berries & sugared donuts for dessert. Nothing fancy schmancy.

Polka Dot Shirt//Feathers & Headbands: Dear Lizzie Boutique
Generally I keep dinners very low key but for our feast I broke out the wedding china we haven’t used in 9 years. The night definitely turned out to be way more work than expected. Just as I was down to scrubbing the last pot and spoon, Quincey walks into the kitchen and says “I’m hungry.” haha!


Sometimes I tend to obsess over things. When I was younger it was collecting those plastic charm necklaces and anything to do with New Kids on the Block. Today, I’m officially obsessed with Instagram. For those of you who don’t know it’s a free app on your iphone and works similar to twitter or facebook where you follow people or have friends, the difference is that your feed is all pictures.

When you go on a walk with the girls they stop and look at every single ant
More evidence of how much this girls loves bugs
Making the yummiest monster cookies with my friend Annie
A freshly picked flower from my Q
My mom and all her granddaughters (missing one grandson)
Piggy back ride
Tiny Flowers
Midnight treat with sprinkles on top

One reason that got me hooked is that it’s insanely fun to capture those moments you might not necessarily get unless you had your phone in your pocket.

Sunday morning on a blanket with my girl.
In-N-Out lunch date with Collin
Dentist appointment. If you know me I hate the dentist. But this particular appointment it was me all alone in a quiet room watching Friends & seriously laughing so much that I had to turn it off while the assistant took pictures of my teeth. (I was so dorky but it was that episode where Phoebe and Chandler are pretending to like each other but he really loves Monica. It’s a classic.)
Avery has a handful of sequins in one hand and a potato bug in the other… so random. I love that girl.

And there are some gnarly photo actions! Did I just say gnarly?
Getting J-Dawgs with the fam (J Dawgs= best hot dogs around)
Cupcake batter and a princess
Toes in the grass
View from our summer mornings outside
Pattern and Lace
My sister doing my hair
Cupcakes from Sweet Tooth Fairy
Sleepy girl and her care bears
Birthday card for a friend

Sunday afternoons & our Lola Bug tries to stand on her own.
Hanging out by the pool enjoying a snowcone because someone pooped in the pool. Sick. lol
Two words=Shaved Ice
Her first love
Garage sale find and new record player holder
Shadow dancing
Date night

Nerd alert

One of the biggest reasons I love Instagram is the numerous companies who take your photos and either print and send them to you, make mini books or large books, posters or even tiny stickers. That’s the part that really got me hooked. Because let me tell you, anything that makes it easier to get pictures of my computer and into my hands makes me a happy girl!
If you’re on Instagram my username is dearlizzy. Or let’s connect on Twitter or Facebook.
Printstagram: mini books, stickers, poster
PostalPix: Prints your pictures onto photo paper & aluminum
Blurb: Photo books. Blurb also prints your blog into a book. Yeah, you can thank me later.
I’m trying all of these out so I will let you know how that goes!

Just like that

Yesterday a string of events forced me to realize the inevitable. My little Aweeey is growing up.

It started with a back-to-school meeting with just us and her new teacher.
She was so elated and drew a picture for her. She also wanted to bring her a flower but needed to find out her teacher’s favorite color first. (She’s very thoughtful.)
Everything went wonderful and her teacher is very sweet. She showed Avery the classroom then quizzed her a bit and Avery willingly showed off her sounding out skills, that’s my girl!
When it was all over and we walked out of the school Avery and I just stood there side-by-side with one arm around her. Excited but stunned and with out saying a word we knew what the other was thinking. She is growing up.

Then, just like that, her first tooth was loose. Quincey was running around saying, “her looth is toose!” It was quite a dramatic episode which gave me a glimpse of the teenage years to come.
First, there was some much-needed reassuring from Dad that another “big” tooth will grow in. Next, we tried numerous techniques to get it out but decided to tell her to “wiggle” it out… so she started wiggling her hips. Not quite. haha.
A little while later, and lots of tears, she came running excitedly with her tiny tooth! I grabbed my camera and we took a couple pics. Then she wanted to show Dad that she’d lost her tooth and the next thing we know she literally lost it- outside. That’s when I started searching for the tooth on my hands and knees like I’d lost the diamond from my ring. But no luck. There was talk of painting a rock white for the Tooth Fairy. heehee But we explained to her that the Tooth Fairy would find it outside.

The next big question: what do Tooth Fairies leave these days? Do I slip an ipad under her pillow or is a quarter still acceptable? ;) Late that night, Collin and I snuck coloring books under each of their pillows sprinkling a little fairy dust in our tracks and just like that, she’s growing up.
The End.

Feel free to still enter the giveaway below…

Feeling Lucky? Dear Lizzy giveaway

Jo Totes provide ladylike bags for women to safely carry their cameras and a lens or two on a daily basis, at photo shoots, and while traveling.

The padded interior can be custom fitted not only to protect a camera and lenses, but also to accommodate and organize items like a wallet, music, phone, keys, cosmetics and more. Padding is sewn directly into the interior lining on all four sides and the bottom of the bags. The bottom is also equipped with four metal feet to guard your bag from rough, dirty, or damp surfaces. Inside of each Jo Tote are removable pads which are completely customizable—you can use as many or as few pads as you wish, arranged in the way that best suits your camera, lenses, and other items. Each bag also includes pockets, strong and comfortable shoulder straps, a top-zippered closure, and a removable cross-body strap.
Leave a comment to win your favorite camera bag!

Evalicious!! I’ve admired her layered art journals for years and the creative embellishments she sells at her shop. Eve is giving away these items to one lucky winner: … memories art journal, label tabs and everyday mini flatback buttons. Perfect to get creative while the kids are back in school or if you don’t have kids to record your summer memories in.

Jacy of Bit O Whimsy is a sweetheart here is all about her darling shop:
I am a mommy too two silly little boys that can crochet up a storm in my spare time! I have been selling my baby hats for almost 3 years and have loved every moment of it. I offer a variety of whimsical baby goodies to mommies and photographers all over the world. I adore creating newborn photo props as well as darling pieces for everyday wear. I strive to be different from all the other hat vendors out there and am constantly adding new designs. My goal is to get a huge “awe” out of people when they see my items. Making my little hats is a dream come true and I cannot think of anything I would rather do. For more about me and my hats you can visit my blog — and my facebook fan page. Stay tuned for the big fall line premier… it is sure to put a smile on your face!
She’s giving away $30 credit to my bigcartel shop as well as 20% off with coupon code DEARLIZZY for everyone!

Leave a comment and 3 winners either a Camera Bag, Evalicious goodies or Bit ‘o Whimsy gift card… I’m crossing my fingers and toes for you!
Leave an extra comment for following them on facebook or twitter.


If I ever needed proof as to whether or not summer has been good to us these pictures would suffice.

If further evidence were required I would hand over our filled up snow cone punch card. What’s your favorite summer memory?

This week: school open house, awesome blog giveaway, moving my office back upstairs, new school shoes shopping… the list goes on and on.

get off our lawn

Running through sprinklers is the quintessential feeling of summer. Try doing it with out laughing… or squealing depending on how cold that hose water is. If summer were to end tomorrow we could bid farewell happily knowing that we played in sprinklers. No, that is not our house. Yes, they probably thought we were crazy.
Here is a popular question:
Dear Lizzy, I see that you use Totally Rad Photoshop actions, but I’m wondering if you bought the TRA1 or TRA2? I went through them, LOVE THEM, and now I can’t decide which one I like best!

xo, Lindsay Roberts

I really enjoy running Totally Rad Actions. I use both of the packages obsessively but if I had to choose I would get the TRA:2. That has a bunch of my favorites that artistically alter your photos. The Get Faded series of actions are totally rad ;) along with Pool Party & all the sharpening tools are great. These actions run like a dream! I also really love Maggie Holmes Actions!

Q: Hi! Where do you get your crazy cute shoes? I remember from long long long ago, you posted a website where you found some fun (and not crazy expensive shoes) and I can’t remember what it was! Thanks, Katie

A: Hi Katie, I can’t specifically remember what shoes you are referring to but let me see if I can guide you to something crazy cute. :) The ones I am wearing in the above pic are older and were from Zappos. (Vivienne Westwood) You can find some good prices there. Another great place where I buy shoes are Ruche & Modcloth which have a selection of reasonably priced picks. Also, BC Footwear has some darling styles.

photos by: who else