Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Not Giving Up on a Dream

Just like any career, being a writer has its ups and downs. It has taken a very long time to call myself a writer. Most people think of me as a stay at home mom first (and rightly so). Writing isn't considered a profession until you sell books and a lot of them. 

I used to question, "Can't everyone write? Doesn't everyone have a vivid imagination?" If that were true then I guess no one would get paid, and it wouldn't be considered a career.


Currently, I am writing for a school curriculum company. Children are holding my writing in their hands, and that is an amazing feeling. I handle social media for a church, and it is gives a sense of accomplishment to help those that are helping others. My eBook was written to help parents potty train with less stress. 

All of this is wonderful, but I am hungry for more. There is a manuscript saved to my desktop that is ready to be published. Sure, I could hire an illustrator and publish the book myself. There is just something alluring about getting a book deal from a publisher.


To date, I have received five rejection letters. Although it's almost impossible not to take the letters personal, I have to keep submitting. My determination is stronger than my bruised ego. So, I research more publishers and keep a running log of when and to whom I have submitted my manuscript. I don't want to give up. I can't give up on my dream. 

Do you have a dream that you are working toward? Have you succeeded in reaching a dream despite failed attempts?

Amanda 

Monday, July 21, 2014

Mommy, How Do You Get the Baby Out?

 Photo Source Unknown

My oldest son is five, and when I was pregnant just 3 short months ago he asked how I would get the baby out. You have to understand J. He is analytical, and a vague answer will never do. Since he is so young, I didn't want to dive into the birds and bees. I told him that we had to go to the hospital to get the baby. Most of the time he would look at me with a question in his eye. He knew there was more to it, but didn't know how to ask. 

Photo by Rachel Bobbitt

For several weeks, I avoided the question. Finally, he couldn't stand it anymore. J asked me again how the baby would come out. I started in with the hospital bit again, but he quickly dismissed my answer and wanted more specifics. He said, "No, mommy. How does the baby come out of you?" While I was thinking of a clever and age appropriate answer he added. "Does your tummy crack like an egg?" 

My face lit up with motherly pride. This kid is smart. He didn't know the answer, but he was willing to try out his problem solving skills on something that he completely didn't understand. I explained that since I am a human I give birth like mammals do. I went on to explain that birds and lizards lay eggs. 

That child is always surprising me, and I love his imagination. Even though he hasn't experienced much, he will try to understand despite limited knowledge. Hopefully he will never lose his sense of wonder, drive for learning, and endless creativity. 

Do you have an original way of explaining the birthing process to little ones?

Amanda

Monday, July 14, 2014

Cleaning Make-Up Brushes

Cleaning make-up brushes doesn't usually make the weekly cleaning list. I know you are supposed to clean them at least once a month, but let's be honest. The only time I think of cleaning them is when the brushes have caked on eye shadow. Fortunately, it doesn't take much time or supplies to clean make-up brushes.  


Supplies: Dirty make-up brushes, plate, dish washing liquid, olive oil, and a paper towel. 

My blush brush is supposed to be white on the ends. They might need to be cleaned just a bit.

Pour equal parts of dish washing liquid and olive oil in a plate.

Swirl the brush in circles to combine the oil and soap. The soap will clean the brush and the oil will keep the brush from drying out.

Rinse the brush under cold water facing down. Try to keep the water on the brush hair only. If water gets into the handle of the brush, it could mold.

After thoroughly rinsing the brushes, allow them to dry for 24 hours.  

They look good as new.

Do you clean your make-up brushes on a regular schedule?

Happy Cleaning,

Amanda

Tuesday, July 8, 2014

Day Dreaming of Furniture

Have I mentioned that we are moving? I'm so excited about our new house, but I am not looking forward to the packing and moving. If I could, I would sell my furniture and buy all new furniture to be delivered to our new house. I dream big!

My sister and I went furniture shopping this past weekend, and these are some of the items I would love to have in our new home.

We spotted this TV console from across the showroom, and I instantly loved it. The price tag on this beauty is outrageous, but it gives me inspiration. 

There is something grown up about having a sitting area in your master bedroom. Most of us use it for piles of laundry that need to be folded, but if we wanted to sit down and read a novel this is the love seat for the job. It has a feminine look to it with a neutral color.

We have an olive green couch right now that we purchased before having children. It has seen better days, but it is holding up. Whenever we decide to buy a new couch, it will be like this charcoal couch. Beautiful!

When it's time to move, do you sell your furniture or take it with you?

Amanda


Monday, July 7, 2014

Chic Turquoise Magnet Board

The first week we were home from the hospital with baby girl, my good friend Alyson brought us dinner. She put everything on an old cookie sheet to make it easier to carry. I was going to return the cookie sheet, but she didn't want it back. Instead of throwing it in recycling, I decided to give it new life and surprise Alyson with a gift.


This poor cookie sheet had seen better days, but it just needed a little TLC. For this project I needed a cookie sheet, acrylic paint, newspaper, sponge paint brush, a paper plate, stickable magnets, and buttons. 

The cookie sheet took two coats of paint. I like how the metal showed through the turquoise, so I only painted it twice on the front and once on the back.

I stuck the magnets on the back of the decorative buttons.  


The magnet board turned out great, and I hope she loves it.


Happy Crafting,

Amanda

Friday, June 20, 2014

Friday's Fave Five

Happy Friday! How are you today? Are you looking forward to the weekend. We have a few plans, but this will probably be a typical weekend for us.

I won a gift certificate to a salon for a day of beauty package. Kevin and I are going on our first date since the baby was born, and I thought I would use the gift certificate. BIG MISTAKE! I asked for highlights and got all of my hair colored. I asked that she not cut my hair shorter than my chin, and she did. I have learned my lesson. Even is someone is trying to be nice and gives you a salon gift certificate don't go to someone other than your regular hairstylist. I'm determined to have a great date anyway. While I look at longer hairstyles on Pinterest, check out my favorites from this week.


1. Charla from Dumpster Darlins Designs stopped by to answer questions about owning a small business while raising her adorable daughter.

2. I never thought I would be a minivan driving mama, but the sliding doors lured me in.

3. I am doing a series on women with amazing small businesses. Please contact me if you are interested in sharing your story.

4. Anyone up for a little challenge

5. Sunday is our 13th wedding anniversary. I loved Kevin when we got married, but I have fallen completely in love with him now. I am so blessed to have this man in my life, and I look forward to many more joyful years together.

Have a wonderful weekend, and I'll see you Monday.

Amanda

Thursday, June 19, 2014

Pinterest Challenge #2

Every once in a while you have to pose a challenge and announce it before you will accomplish anything. I'm feeling up to a Pinterest challenge. How about you?


Below are the things I would like to do before the end of the month. If you would like to join me, choose five things from your different Pinterest boards that you would like to do. At the end of the month, I will post the results of my challenge. Let me know if you are up for a little Pinterest fun.

1. I have been looking for fun things to do with the boys this summer. An ice volcano sounds messy, and that is exactly what the boys will love.

2. Now that the baby is here, it's time to stop giving in to the cravings. I'm working on a healthier menu, and I want to try this recipe.

3. Diaper boxes are in abundance these days. They will make excellent storage boxes.

4. Yoga is one of my favorite exercises, and these poses are supposed to help flatten this post-pregnancy belly. I want to do these poses 3 times a week throughout the rest of the month.

5. Besides my family, writing is my passion. I want to grow my business, sell my eBook, and have books published. Adding a Pinterest button to my pictures is one piece of this puzzle.

If you have never done a Pinterest Challenge, you are in for a treat. So, who's with me?

Amanda
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