Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Exciting News!

Last year I entered a Christmas contest with Cedar Fort.  When the results came out I was disappointed that I didn't win. So when I got an email a few days after the big announcement, I calmed my nerves, knowing it was a rejection.  It was from an actual person so I thought it might contain a few words of encouragement but I wasn't exactly excited to open the email.
 But it wasn't a rejection after all.  I had to read the email a couple times before it sunk in.
 They liked my story and want to publish it in pamphlet form this Christmas!
(Pamphlets are fantastic Christmas gifts for people who live far away, and neighbors, and Home Teaching Families, and Visiting Teaching sisters, and people you love, and people you kind of like, and people you should like more, and grandma...) 

I got the contract for The Candy Cane Queen on Friday and sent it in today!

Monday, January 23, 2012

My first tutorial! Easy and inexpensive way to decorate a child's room

I posted this on Facebook when I first did it but I thought it would be good to put it on my blog too.

I painted a castle mural on my daughter's wall several years ago and then I painted my oldest son's room when it was built last summer (blue only- nothing fancy).  My youngest son was the only one with plain white walls. So I asked him what he wanted and he said kitties.  He also wanted orange and green walls but we had a lot of paint left over from his brother's room so he got blue by default. 

His obsession with all things cat has lasted for seven years and there are days I wonder if it will ever end. (He still wears tails on occasion - but not as much as he used to.) I did not want to go through all the trouble of painting adorable kittens on his wall to have him decide six months later that he'd prefer soccer balls. But since he wasn't going to get his color scheme, I decided he should get the one thing he really wanted - a kitty room. 

So I made the kitties out of contact paper - the kind of sticky paper you line shelves with and don't not leave a mark when removed. I used white contact paper but there are a lot of different colors and patterns available.  I found outlines of cats online, printed, and cut them out.  Then I used an exacto knife to trace the pictures onto the contact paper and stuck the kitties to the wall.  I added a few little circles for balls and a little mouse too.  The best part is the kitties can easily be removed and I can always use more contact paper to create a new motif when he is done being obsessed with cats. 

This was one of the first kitties I put up.  My son informed me that it needed an eye.  Cutting out an eye is easier said than done.

With this kitty I used a marker for the eye.  Much better. I didn't notice the smudge in the paint until after I was done.  It isn't as bad in real life.

See the Spiderman poster?  He does like things other than kitties.

The upside down kitty is playing with the ball.

This kitty is chasing a mouse.

My favorite is the kitty with its back to us.

One last shot showing most of the wall.
That's it for the tutorial.  It's an easy project that requires little to no artistic skills and is really inexpensive.  I put all the kitties up high but if you put them lower, your child can help stick them to the walls.  Have fun!

I have a very exciting announcement coming soon!  Stay tuned.

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Pet Benefits

I hear pets help you live longer.  I guess that could be true. I mean, you could be home all by yourself, listening to an MP3 player and vacuuming the floor.  Someone could break in to your house and you'd never know it. This is where your pet comes in. Cats have an amazing ability of making you more aware of your environment.  

(Kitty Translator - Now that I have your attention and you've turned that noisy thing off, you may pet me. And then you may feed me.  I want the stuff in the can.)

Monday, January 2, 2012

Why I don't make New Year's Resolutions

Happy New Year! I saw a post on Facebook asking how many people have actually succeeded with their New Years Resolution.  Are the numbers really that low?  Yes, I think so.  And here’s why.  A resolution is a one time thing – like a bubble.  

You declare you won’t pop the bubble, but it’s so tempting.  So you pop it.  

 You can’t unpop it, so your resolution is broken. 

 Let’s say you resolve to be kinder to the environment. 

 You buy a load of reusable bags but forget to take them with you to the store. 

 Bam! Broken resolution. You may as well leave your car running while you pick your kids up for school.  (You do that anyway, don’t you?) I would have been okay forgetting about the reusable bags but if I brought home a plastic bag, my daughter would look up at me with her big sad eyes. 

 To which I would say,  

So I’d cut the handles on the bags (for the birds) and put them in the recycle bin with my guilt. And a few years later when her dad brings home plastic bags, she says nothing.  “What about the sea turtles?” I ask.
She'll be sorry one day when no one can find Nemo.

So I set goals.  Goals aren’t a one-time thing.  They’re a journey.  Your goal is the destination.  So if your goal is to lose weight, you can still get to your destination if you stop to eat a Twinkie.  It will take you longer, but you can still get there if you don’t take too many side roads. 

 So what are your goals for 2012? I plan to clean the bathroom more often. I like to keep my goals simple.