Hey everyone! Between organizing areas in the house and simultaneously finishing up two big projects, one indoor and the other outdoor, the hubs and I have been downright busy. We so enjoyed our time with family over the holidays and if you didn’t hear, we added a new member to the family right before Christmas. Meet Whiskers!
Whiskers is my first obsession this year. I will get to my second obsession in just a minute. Back in August of this year, we had applied to be a puppy raiser for Canine Companions For Independence. After being interviewed and filling out some paperwork we were accepted into their program. You can read more about the process in our Pay It Forward blog post here. The hardest part was waiting for our new puppy. All we knew was that she was going to be either a black or yellow Lab or Golden Retriever/Lab mix and they were flying her from Santa Rosa, California to Florida. We didn’t even know her name but a week before she arrived we got an email that said she was born in the “W” litter and her name would start with W. The kids were trying to guess her name and came up with at least 50 female names but never did one of us guess “Whiskers”. What a surprise!
Many people ask us how we are going to be able to give her up in 18 months after she has already stolen our hearts. It will definitely be difficult and I guess we will just deal with that when the time comes. We didn’t get involved with this organization with blinders on. Dean and I first attended a graduation ceremony where the puppies that graduated from the program were handed over to the recipients. I see in my mind every day the children and adults with physical disabilities that were on stage receiving their service dog. They were so happy to receive a companion to help them in their every day lives whether it is to pick something up that was dropped, turn on a light, open a door or just to love. On our way out, we saw the puppy raisers handing over their pups that they loved and cared for the past 18 months and we noticed a grown man on one bent knee crying his eyes out as he said good bye to his puppy. I walked over to him and consoled him as I knew that will be us 17 months from now. For now, we are enjoying her presence every minute that we have her and hope that she will make us very proud when the day comes to hand her over.
My other obsession, not near as emotional but pretty darn exciting, was a total impulse buy right before Christmas when I was browsing through JoAnn’s arts and craft store. I had never seen it priced so low before and it included the bundle set. A few of my friends had one and loved it and I kept seeing all the cool things people were making on Pinterest and Instagram with it. I kept putting it off because of the price so when I saw it on sale, I walked by it a couple times, walked away from it to see if I was drawn back and by golly, like a magnet the force was so strong that I grabbed it off the shelf and never looked back. No buyers regret at all. I love it and you will be seeing all the fun projects that I am doing with my new Silhouette Cameo machine.
The Silhouette Cameo usually is $299.00 and that is without the bundle package. The bundle I purchased included the blade, hook, spatula, pick-me-up tool, cutting mat, a $25 download card for the online design store and a material cutter. I purchased the Pix Scan mat separately and can’t wait to digitize fabric patterns and sketches. The total I paid for mine was $199.00. I haven’t seen a new one with the bundle package for any less. I have noticed that some of the bundle packages are not the same so be sure to look closely to see which items you want the most for your starter kit if you plan to purchase one. This is the best deal I have found for the Silhouette Cameo with bundle set on Amazon. The tools included are slightly different but it is a good start. Browse around on Amazon, some of the bundles also come with the vinyl.
Many of you have heard of the Silhouette but for those of you who haven’t and love the ability to make your own designs, inspirational quotes and monograms on wood, fabric, vinyl, plastic, paper and so on, this little machine does it all. Be careful as it can become quite addicting.
I have a camel color tote that I wanted to put a monogram on. There is a little bit of a learning curve with the software. It seems much harder than what it is. Everything looks so professionally done I just assumed it can’t be that simple but it truly is. I watched a few You Tube tutorial videos and was up and running in no time at all.
I purchased the gold heat transfer vinyl, downloaded my monogram, reversed the image and sent to the Silhouette and within a few minutes the vinyl was cut. From there, I peeled off the backing and positioned the monogram on the tote where I wanted it. Placing a dish towel over the vinyl, I ironed over the top for 15 seconds. I did this 3 times to ensure the vinyl image would adhere to the tote. Then, I peeled back the clear transfer part of the vinyl and the gold had adhered perfectly.
It was amazing to see the intricate design of the entire monogram adhere so easily. Stay tuned for more Silhouette Cameo projects including monogram phone case, puppy food mat and organizers.
Now you can see why my new obsessions…Whiskers & Silhouette are both a hit in our household.
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