Monday, June 23, 2008

The BEST of Times...

OMG...I had such an AWESOME time in Sheridan. We all did. I knew I missed those girls but I didn't know just how BAD I miss them. Once in a life time - best friends forever kind of friends!!! Got to have lunch with Kim, Mary and her sweet boys, Annie, Tara, Kelly, and my mother in law Suzy. SO fun - having a girls lunch date. They have been so few and far between in Omaha and now with Jayne moving they will really be few and far between. Anyways.....then went to Annie's and visited and saw her kiddoes who are growing up so fast. Then to Mary and Cory's - they have such a beautiful home with most GORGEOUS view of the mountains - man I didn't want to leave. It was so wonderful to be with friends all weekend, I will keep repeating that....
Drew (Steve's brother) and Mandy came to town - first time meeting Mandy - she is great. Then dancing with the girls - too fun - Friday night Ms. Simone joined us and man did we dance.....girls you are the greatest.
Then on to Saturday. So cool - Steve ran his first 50 mile trail run - the Bighorn Mountain run. I got some good photos and Drew got a video clip - will hopefully get those posted this week. It was awesome. He completed his first 50 mile run in just over 11 hours. Hopefully I can get him to write a post - because he's got great details. I am so proud of him!!! It was so cool - and he finished so well - looked great - not like a man who just ran 50 MILES!!!! He is a little sore and he rolled his ankle - so he's sporting a cankle. But it was all good.
Then Saturday evening - more dancing and fun. Just great fun.
Suzy was so helpful - she watched the boys a lot while I visited with friends. THANK YOU SUZY!!!! I really appreciate it.
I was so sad to go. I miss you girls horribly. I love you all!!!! You are the BEST!!! Can't wait til the girls weekend in February!!! And Mary I cannot wait til our Vegas weekend......
Now I am in MC for a relaxing week hanging out with the family. So happy to be here. I have to run Steve to Billings - so he can catch a plane back to Omaha for the week - he will join us on Friday and we are off to Ennis for a week of mountain fun! CANNOT wait. What a great vacation this needed!!!

Friday, June 20, 2008

And the winner is.....

Tara!!!! Woohoo and congrats to Tara!

I just wanted to say THANK YOU all for voting and supporting the Bead Star contest. I didn't make it into the top 5 - but that is ok! It was SO EXCITING having made it into the top 20!!!!

Have a fantabulous day everyone. We will we are in Sheridan and we get to see all our friends!!! YEah.

Tomarrow Steve runs his first ultra-marathon - 50 miles at the Bighorn Mountain Run. Exciting - will let you all know how he does.

Chat at you soon!!!

Monday, June 16, 2008

Vote for Star Hitched Wagon again, please!!

Vote for Us for's 3rd annual On The Rise awards and you could win a $500 shopping spree!

Sunday, June 15, 2008


"The love of a father is one of nature's greatest masterpieces."

Happy Father's Day to my father! Thank you for being such an awesome DAD!!! We all love you and miss you very much. Can't wait to see you - just one week! Have a great day relaxing and reading your new book!

A funny quote I found about Father's:
"Fatherhood is pretending the present you love most is soap-on-a-rope."
- Bill Cosby

This just makes me laugh - we totally used to get my dad soap on a rope for Christmas when we were young. And Dad always acted like it was JUST what he wanted. Funny!!! (Our neighbors growing up always said my parents were like Claire and Bill Huckstable)

Happy Father's Day to my wonderful husband! We love you very much. Thank you for all you do for the kids and I. We truly appreciate it. Hope it's a good day!

Happy Father's Day to Wayne - hope you have a great day! We love you.

Happy Father's Day to all the other important Father's in our lives - all our family, friends, neighbors: Brady, Pat, Eric, Bob, Danny, Phil, Scott, Terry, Jeff, Dale, Itchy, Jes, Scott, Cory, Danco, Tom - hope you all have a wonderful day spent with the ones you love!!!

Brady & Abby

Pat, Jamie & Sydney

Eric, Joanie, Jackson and Carter

Bob, Jo, Angela & Bethany

Jeff, Kay & Jamie

Itchy, Brady & Steve

Jes & Molly

Scott, Kris & Trevor

Cory & Carson

Thursday, June 12, 2008

Ok because I am so exctied.... about another giveaway.....
ok go check out all the fantastic entries!!! Next vote for your favorite 9. Then let me know that you voted by posting in the comment section. There are a ton of beautiful pieces - it was hard to pick my favorites. Thank you for supporting the contesta nd all the talent!
On the 19th I will pick a winner.
How about for these:

FUN!!! Thanks for playing along and for voting!


Like SERIOUSLY excited!!!!

Star Hitched Wagon entered 3 categories in the 2008 Bead Star competition along with 1500 other entrants and my Waterfall Necklace made it into the top 20 finalists for the Pearl category. WOOHOO!!!!!!
So here is where all of you - my dear friends, family, clients, readers come in - if you would like to - I would be so happy if you could vote for my Waterfall Necklace #5 found here:
Oh and you can tell all your friends and family to vote and they can tell all their friends and families to vote, and on and on and on! :)
The top 3 places and 2 honorable mention in each category will be published in the Bead Star magazine December 2008.
The grand prize will be picked from the top contestant in each of the 9 categories. The prize includes a trip to Santa Fe for the Bead Expo with $1500.00 to spend on beads - wonderful beads!!!! Wouldn't that be GRAND!!!!!
Thank you again loyal readers :) for sharing in my excitment!!!! And man am I excited - it is a HUGE honor to have made it this far!!!!!!

Sunday, June 8, 2008

And the winner is.....


Becky wins Star Hitched Wagon Jessa Earrings, pictured below.

CONGRATS Becky!!!! Please email me your address and I will get these sent out to you next week.
Thanks to everyone else for playing along!!! Keep checking back you never know when we will do it again!

Saturday, June 7, 2008

Evolution of my hair

I was thinking about the different lengths my hair has been - trying to figure out which is best and I am not sure. I think I want to go even shorter than it is now - although not as short as it has been at it's shortest - man I hated that haircut. Anyways - what about all of you??? I would sooooo love to see the evolution of your hair - if you play along please share a link!!!
My senior pictures - hair fall 1993

Me looking ever so dorky - my 10 year class reunion - hair July 2004

Myself and my Auntie Carol - hair May 2005

Macey and I - hair fall 2005

Us the zoo - hair May 2007 - I think this is the longest my hair has been since highschool - if not ever!!!

Steve and I - hair fall 2007

Steve and I - hair christams 2007

Me - hair May 2008

ME - hair now - and trust me I am FULLY aware just how REDICULOUS I look in this picture - it's the best I have with my current haircut - lame I know.

the back now

New Jewelry Packaging

Star Hitched Wagon jewelry will now arrive beautifully packaged in our signature box tied with ribbon!

Tuesday, June 3, 2008

Going to be published again!!!

So exciting 4 more of my pieces will be published in the Nov/Dec 2008 issue of Bead Trends magazine. The Eternity set (necklace, bracelet, and earrings) Perdy.
I cannot tell you how exciting this is - every time I submit I wait in suspense hoping hoping hoping they will pick me. And YEAH they did again - four of the 12 pieces I submitted. Thanks everyone for sharing in my excitement.

Come on!!! :)

Hey guys don't forget to post a comment on the post below:
Happy Summer
if you are interested in a chance to win my fantastic Jessa Earrings!!!

Come on, come on!! Right now it's just Tara and Becky in the hat - good luck girlies!! :)

Monday, June 2, 2008

New business venture for my sister

Congrats and best of luck to my sister Jodi - who just became a Stampin Up consultant! YIPPEE!!! So exciting! I just know you will be ultra successful at this - such a passion of yours!!
Now if anyone out there in blog land is interested I am going to put together a catalog order group. Just need 5 people who want to spend $25.00 a month. And then we will take turns getting the hostess rewards. So fun and my sister is awesome - she will be a great consultant and we can all help her get things rolling!! I guarantee she will make it SOOOO worth it. I would really like to start in July. So just post a comment here and I will get the needed info to you!!! Come on come on - what are you waiting for????

Sunday, June 1, 2008

Could be bad....

Star Hitched Wagon™ is part of the Indie Beauty Network which is an awesome network that offers a vast amount of resources for small businesses like Star Hitched Wagon™ - businesses that are in the bath and body product industry.
Anyways.......currently manufacturers of bath and body products are required to follow certain labeling practices so as not to be fined by the FDA. For example - the line about not being FDA approved, the inci ingredients (the ones that hardly anyone can pronounce) anyways - I am okay with that - it give a very professional look and it protects both consumer and manufacturer. That is easy - but that could all change - this is an email that I recieved today from the president of the Indie Beauty Network.....

Dear Members,

I write to you with an update on a regulatory concern that threatens the Indie Beauty industry, and the action I would like to take.

First a bit of background.

Before 2000, the year I founded the Indie Beauty Network, I worked as an attorney for many years, mostly as an advocate for various companies before federal and state regulatory bodies. When I started making cosmetics of my own, and later selling them, I often pondered and appreciated the regulatory freedoms that participants in the cosmetics industry enjoyed.

Unlike other industries, cosmetics industry participants do not have to register their businesses or their manufacturing facilities with the federal government. Registration is voluntary, and estimates are that less than 1/3 of the operating cosmetics facilities in the US are registered under the FDA's voluntary registration program. While a few states require facility registration, the vast majority do not. In addition, companies do not have to obtain state or federal pre-approval before selling cosmetics.

One of the reasons I started IBN is because I have a passion for cosmetics and beauty products. I also have a passion for you -- the Indie beauty business owners -- who make and sell them. I have always felt strongly that, as the industry grew and flourished, increased regulatory oversight would follow.

Today, Congress is poised to give the Food & Drug Administration the ability to implement what I consider to be burdensome and costly regulations that go far beyond what is required for the agency to effectively perform its legislative mandate.

I formed IBN in part so that, when the time came, IBN members would have an advocate in the event this type of unfair regulation became a possibility.

It seems as though that time has come.

Food and Drug Administration Globalization Act of 2008

The draft of the Food and Drug Administration Globalization Act of 2008 was announced late last month. The legislation is aimed at giving the FDA authority to promulgate new regulations that are supposed to protect consumers and also provide the funding the agency needs to enforce existing laws in a global market.

Since its announcement, several industry participants have testified before the House Committee on Energy and Commerce, Subcommittee on Health about the draft, including Stephen F. Sundlof, DVM, PhD, Director of the Center for Food Safety and Applied Nutrition at the Food and Drug Administration, and a representative of the Personal Care Products Council, formerly known as the Cosmetic, Toiletries & Fragrances Association. (See:

You can read the full text of the draft legislation here: As you can see, the proposed legislation would, among other things:

1. Require all cosmetics companies serving American consumers to register annually with the FDA, and pay a registration fee of $2,000 per facility per year, and to list in its registration the cosmetics is manufactures, processes, packs or holds, and also, for manufacturers, to list all ingredients in each product contained in the registration listing.
2. Require all cosmetics companies to report to the FDA "serious adverse events" resulting from the use of the products.
3. Require all cosmetics companies to comply with the FDA's Good Manufacturing Practices.
4. Require all cosmetics that import cosmetics to register annually with the FDA, and pay another registration fee to do so.
5. Give the FDA authority to levy substantial fines for violations of the new requirements.

The implications of passage of this draft legislation are obvious and far reaching, and should it become law, it will have a definitive and immediate effect. While I feel we must acknowledge the critical role of the FDA in protecting consumers from unsafe or misbranded cosmetics products, we also must ensure that they appreciate that imposition of registration fees, registration requirements and burdensome reporting requirements on small businesses will snuff out an entire segment of the cosmetics industry. It will also have the devastating effect of hampering the creativity and robust competition that consumers have come to expect and appreciate.

What I'd Like To Do On Your Behalf

I would like to prepare a position paper on behalf of the 700+ members of the Indie Beauty Network to will address the draft legislation and share IBN members' perspective. Of course, I first need to know what your perspective is, so I have set up a forum for you to post your opinions:

Please share your suggestions, opinions and questions there.

Please post your comments as soon as possible. Once they are reviewed, I will call a member-wide teleconference meeting to address our options so we can collectively decide what steps to take next.

I will also post this email message there, along with other updates from time to time. Please note that the forum is open to the public at this time, but any draft letters sent to any authority on this topic will be vetted only among IBN members in a private forum. Members of the public will not be able to see our draft letters, or the edits we make to them.

Please feel free to post this email to your blogs, discussion groups, newsletters, etc. I know it's kind of long, but if you post it, please do so without making any changes.

I look forward to hearing your thoughts and questions, and to working with you on these important matters.

Thank you,

Donna Maria Coles Johnson
Founder & President
The Indie Beauty Network

Selected Resources & Links:

Committee on Energy & Commerce Website:
Discussion Draft Legislation:
Testimony of Janet Woodcock, M.D., Director, Center for Drug Evaluation and Research
Testimony of Center for Science in the Public Interest:

I know that right now $2000.00 would not be fiesable. And they want it to be an annual fee - wowzers. Some of us in this industry are soooo small beans that might be their entire income. If this is passed it would mean many of these small businesses would go away. That is so sad - because we all have a lot to offer - any many passionate individuals offering wonderfully safe quality products - just simply not FDA approved. So sad. I guess I need to do something to protect others like me....