Here is my edit for today's Fix it Friday Challenge. I loooove the one they used at the top of the blog post.
I make 2 more copies of the layer. The middle layer gets the blur filter. I usually use guassian blur at about 50 pixels. I had to select the background on this one to keep the red hat from getting blurred into my background. Now I go to the top layer, and use a soft medium opacity eraser to erase the parts that I want blurred. (Background, baby skin, etc.) Flatten it. And Ta-Da!!
I am pretty sure that if you have a photoshop or the new elements, you can use a mask for this instead, but for what it's worth, I like the sandwich.
I will have to check out the tutorials on the website, and see what worked for them :)