Friday, July 31, 2009

Mod Podge Mania and a surprise!

Are you ready? Well I hope so, because I have had quite the time putting MPM together this month! The project I had in mind was a bust. I hope to have it done for next month, but it's a little bit more project than I had time to do, and my Monkey has been sick, so trying to actually accomplish something with her clinging to me, and crying for me to hold her was a little difficult. Last night I finally had to throw in the towel on that project (for now).

Then I came up with another project, and it was quite simple, and relatively quick. But I have now spent the last 2 hours trying to load my pictures! For some reason my computer is having difficulty reading my new memory card. I'm not sure if it's the computer, or the card!

I decided to put one of my old frames to good use, you know the ones that haven't hung in your house for ages, but it's a good frame, so you don't want to just throw it out! I did a quick spray paint job on the frame - I love Rustoleum Espresso Brown!




Then I took some fabric that I picked up at Walmart - only $.87 for 1/3 yard!


I put my handy-dandy Cricut cutter to work on some dark brown cardstock...


And...VOILA!


What I did: I cut my letters and flowers, then arranged them how I wanted them to look. Then I mod podged the cardstock onto the back of the glass piece for the frame, making sure to place them backward, so they would read properly when viewed from the front side of the glass. After my letters and flowers were in place, I slathered on another layer of Mod Podge, placed my fabric piece over the letters, and spread more Mod Podge over the back. I let it dry then secured the glass into the frame with a little hot glue. I finished it off with a brown tulle "hanger".

So what do ya think? Do you want me to give it to you? I will...well at least to one of you!

Here's how to enter! First, you must leave a comment, specifying that you'd like to be entered into the giveaway - this will give you one entry. If you'd like another entry, just follow me! For one more chance to win, blog about my giveaway and link back to this post! Easy peasy!

Now it's your turn to show us what you've got! You may link up an old post, or create a new one, sharing a fabulous Mod Podge project with us. PLEASE link back here in your post so others can find the party! Last...if you want to share an idea from someone else, just make sure to give credit where credit is due...thanks!

Let the inspiration begin!




Clarification: You do NOT have to link up a project to be entered into the giveaway, and you do NOT have to enter the giveaway to link up your project! Just clarify in your comment if you are entering the giveaway...thanks!

Thursday, July 30, 2009

Check it out!

I am participating in my first swap! I've never done a swap, but have always thought it would be fun...so now, my super cool friend Shawn at Seriously is hosting one and I just had to join in!



serioulsyshawn
I can't wait to find out who my partner is and start reading up on her so I can put together a fabulous package! It's going to be so fun! If you want to join in, just click on the button and head over to Shawns!!
Don't forget to come back tomorrow for Mod Podge Mania!

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

I'll take my cookies on a stick please.

A while back I promised to show you how to make cookie pops - like this one here ,that I made for a handout for Girls' camp. They're easier than you might think. This is the first time I have ever made them, and they were a huge hit with the girls.

You'll want to start with your favorite "cut-out" sugar cookie recipe. If you don't have a favorite, PLEASE allow me to share MY favorite. The recipe below is what I would recommend to anyone who a) has never made rolled sugar cookies, or b) has NEVER had any luck making good cut-out sugar cookies. I just recently found this recipe, and it will now be my only sugar cookie recipe! The dough is a dream to work with, and the flavor is great. PLUS it only has to chill for one hour.

First roll out your dough out and cut your shape. I found that a thickness of about 1/2 " works best. Then take a spatula and carfully flip your cookie over so the back side is facing up.

Next, take your stick. You can buy these in the baking section of anywhere. There are regular lolipop size, or tall ones if you want to attempt a cookie bouquet! Place your stick so it goes at least 1/2 way up the back of your cookie.

Next, with a gentle twisting motion, work your stick down into the dough a little bit. don't go too far, or the stick will break through the front of your cookie while baking.
Then, you can slightly pinch to dough on either side of the stick to tighten it up a little bit.

Take a small piece of dough, and press it over the stick to seal it in.
Carefully turn your cooke back over, and place it on your cookie sheet, stick side down.
Once your cookies are finished, the bottom will have flattened out, and baked together, securing the stick in place!

After they have cooled...decorate as you'd like! I love the icing recipe below. It dries shiny, and hard enough to stack, but not too hard to bite into!

You'll want to adjust the milk a little depending on the consistency you want. I use the recipe "as is" for "piping" the details. I thin it a little with milk (not too much or it will just run off your cookie!) and "paint" the icing onto the cookie for the main coloring.

For these cookies I iced them first with yellow tinted icing, and sprinkled yellow sprinkles on to make them "sparkly". Then I piped orange around the circle, and "sunbeams". I love how they turned out!
I let these dry over night before stacking them and transporting them up to camp. They all arrived in perfect condition!

I also made just cookies for a party the next week, and they only had about an hour to dry, they still stacked okay, and didn't really stick together, but overnight is definitely best.

So there you have it...success on the first attempt! If I can do it...ANYONE can! I hope you have fun with these...and if anyone makes them PLEASE come let me know how they worked out!
Best Rolled Sugar Cookies (recipe from Allrecipes.com)
INGREDIENTS
1 1/2 cups butter, softened
2 cups white sugar
4 eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
5 cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon salt

DIRECTIONS
In a large bowl, cream together butter and sugar until smooth. Beat in eggs and vanilla. Stir in the flour, baking powder, and salt. Cover, and chill dough for at least one hour (or overnight).
Preheat oven to 400 degrees F (200 degrees C). Roll out dough on floured surface 1/4 to 1/2 inch thick. Cut into shapes with any cookie cutter. Place cookies 1 inch apart on ungreased cookie sheets.

Bake 6 to 8 minutes in preheated oven. Cool completely. For me, I had to bake them 10 minutes to get them done enough to stay on the stick...they were still soft, but firm enough not to break. I also let them sit on the pans for 10 minutes before transferring them to cooling racks.

Sugar Cooke Icing
INGREDIENTS:
1 cup powdered sugar
4 tsp milk
1 tsp vanilla
2 tsp light corn syrup
DIRECTIONS:
Whisk powdered sugar and milk together until smooth. Add vanilla and corn syrup and quickly whisk together until all lumps are gone. Tint with food coloring.
Happy Baking!
P.S. Don't forget to come back Friday for Mod Podge Mania!

Monday, July 27, 2009

What do ya think of this?

I have been DYING to feature this project ever since I first came up with the idea of hosting Mod Podg Mania.

Meg at Brassy Apple did this FABULOUS desk makeover using...you guessed it...Mod Podge!

Please click here to see how she did it, and see the other side of the desk! Plus see what it looked like before!


I wanted to post a little inspiration for all you ladies since Mod Podge Mania is upon us again! Our party has shrunk a little, and I'd like to see more people link up with their awesome projects! So hurry...there's still plenty of time to put something together before July 31!

Saturday, July 25, 2009

Who cleans your carpets?

Well my chicas...I am still a little out of the blogging loop. Please don't hate me for not visiting! I am determined to come visit all my favorite ladies before this weekend is over!

Part of the reason I have been MIA is a project I have been working on. Some of you know that my husband and I own a small carpet cleaning business. We have been blessed with steady business, and a continual increase in customers. So far our entire business has been built by word of mouth from happy customers. Although the economy has impacted our bottom line for sure, we still have been very fortunate to have steady work so far this year.

Still, with prices going up on EVERYTHING...including our supplies, and the several financial set-backs we've experienced in recent weeks, we decided it was time to pound the pavement and drum up some additional business.

As I mentioned before, we've never had to advertise, our customers are our best publicity. So now I am faced with the decision of the best way to get our name out there to more people. Since I have had the BEST time meeting new people through blogging, I decided that a carpet cleaning blog may be one way for people to learn about us, and what we have to offer.

I've been working really hard on puting one together for my husband. But then I faced a new dilemma. Should I blog about it here? As most of you know, I'm very protective of my family, and try hard to protect their identities. I also have never indicated on my blog where I live. Some of you know from email conversations, some of you have guessed from different things I've posted about, and a few people have "outted" me in the comments.

The thing is, I'm so proud of the hard work my husband does for our family, and I feel like maybe I should relax a little bit, and be willing to share about him, and his work with those who live near me and might be interested in our services, or in spreading the word. Ya know?

So here goes...J.P. Carpet and Tile Care is a family owned and operated business serving families in the Greater Salt Lake Valley and surrounding areas for the past 9 years! Click the button if you'd like to learn more! WHEW! Glad I got that out!




Look what good work he does!

This was taken while cleaning his sister's carpet


This is cleaning the tile at a commercial building downtown.
Although carpet and tile cleaning isn't the most glamorous job, we have definitely met some wonderful people and love making new friends and forming great working relationships through our business.
I'd love you to spread the word if you know anyone who may be in need of our services!
Now I have a bunch more to blog about and hope to get it all out this next week! But for now I'm off to visit all my friends whom I've been missing so much!

Thursday, July 23, 2009

All those who made my birthday special.

I'm sorry I've been such a blog slacker this week. I meant to blog all about the stuff I want to share with you, and get around to visit all my favorite ladies...but it's just been so crazy! Bookworm and Hubby had scout camp on Mon-Wednesday, Hubby had to go get new x-rays, and make sure his wrist is healing up properly, had a Christmas in July girls night on Saturday with the YW presidency and some other fab ladies in the ward, and we still don't have a car!

But, the crazy, busy life is being good to me. Even though I had to spend my birthday away from my family, and we have some crazy stuff goin' on, my birthday was one of the best I can remember. Part of the reason for that is the wonderful ladies I have met in bloggy-land who have made me feel so loved! I can't believe you guys!

So Wednesday, before I left for camp, Hubby gathered the family around and the kids gave me their cards they had made for me, and I got a few presents that Hubby knew I could really use (yeah...we're being practical this year!) THEN hubby hands me this PILE of stuff that he's been getting in our P.O. Box we have for our business. Apparently my dear friend Tanielle has been being a little sneaky, and conspired to have some birthday love sent my way!

I still can't believe how thoughtful you all are! I mean I can, but it truly humbles me.
Vivienne, my funny, funny friend from The V Spot has been on the look out for monogrammed "X" stuff, ever since I complained about not finding any here. Being unable to locate any "X" merchandise, she took matters into her own hands and made this for me! Isn't it fabulous? I LOVE it...and look at the adorable card she made too!


Look...more "X" stuff! MiMi, another oh so hilarious one made me this ca-ute mini clip board for helping me keep track of my life...let's hope it works...cuz I'm like the most un-organized person on the planet! Thanks MiMi...I love it!

My sweet, sweet friend Sare, one of the first fabulous people I met through my blog, sent me 2 adorable, musical cards. One to say "sorry you're having a tough time...cheer up!" And one with wonderful birthday wishes! Thank you Sare!

That adorable Jen at Harried Mom of Four (I can sooo relate! 4 is crazy!) sent me the sweetest card...and it has sparkles! You all know how I love sparkly things! PLUS it's PINK! I sooo love PINK! Thanks Jen!


My soccer lovin' sista Becca at The Texas Darlings sent me birthday wishes and a gift card to treat myself to something yummie! You all know how I love to eat, so I can't wait to treat myself! Thanks Becca!
I also got so many sweet Birthday wishes through comments on my blog, and every single one of them brightened my day! Thank you, thank you, thank you everyone...I love you!

I just wanted to share this little gift that my sweet Cowgirl made up on her very own! It's the New Kids on The Block! Clever or what? She made them for me since I had to miss my concert! Isn't she sweet?


This is my card from Tanielle.





Look at all the fun polka-dotty, stripey love she gave me! I am one spoiled girl!


I seriously cannot get over how kind you all are. I love my bloggy friends! Thanks for making this birthday so special, I'll never forget it! I promise to be by soon, because I really miss reading what's up with you all!

Monday, July 20, 2009

Friend Makin' Monday...Girl's Camp!

I'm Back! Did you miss me? I missed you!

This week's FMM is being hosted by Jolanthe at No Ordinary Moments, and is a perfect oportunity for me to share Girl's Camp!

The task is Vacation...and we're supposed to share our favorite vacay. Well technically Girl's Camp was a resposnibility for church, but I loved every minute of it...so I'm sharing!

If you read me regularly you know I had to go to camp late, due to some unfortunate events that took place during the weeks prior. I'm still really sad that I missed the first 2 days!

When I got to camp, the girls were having free time, and they were doing fun hemp styles in each other's hair. You use the hemp twine to twist and tie around the hair, kind of like friendship bracelets, if you ever made those. You throw some beads into the design as well.

This picture was the perfect representative of the entire week. The girls were really kind to each other, and there wasn't any girl drama with cliques, and gossip, and bickering. Everyone just really got along well, and was thoughtful, and helpful the entire time.




There were many rigorous games of California Speed going on throughout the week.


Andrea, AKA Young Women's President, or one of the neatest people I've ever met, chillin' in the camp chair. Don't let the image deceive you, she worked her little tail off to make this camp a success, and it showed!

This is Heidi, rearranging the coals on our dutch oven chicken. Even though she looks like one of the girls, she's actually our Camp Director! She was amazing, and took this task on with such enthusiasm and she pulled it off and we all had an amazing experience!

All the girls, grouped by their ages, were responsible for preparing and cleaning up different meals throughout camp. They were always more than willing to serve and had a great attitude, and fun time doing it!

I saw this fabulous idea for Glitter Toes when Jen at Tatertots and Jello posted about it, and I just KNEW I had to do it for Girl's Camp! It was a huge hit!


Tada! My toes are the bottom left pink ones. We all felt sparkly and pretty, even amongst the dirt and the bugs!

Being in the mountains, away from the everyday distractions of life is such a wonderful way to appreciate this beautiful earth our Heavenly Father has blessed us with, and reflect on all the wonderful blessings we enjoy each day. It's also a perfect opportunity for the girls to bond with and serve each other, and really ponder what matters in life, and how the decisions they make now can affect the rest of their lives. We had a wonderful message on Virtue presented by a member of our bishopric, and I hope and pray the girls were touched, and really take his words to heart. My heart hurts for today's young people when I think about all they have to face in today's world, and I want so badly for them to make the decisions that will bring them the greatest happiness. I hate to think of them making the choices that will bring heartache and regret. I so want to be able to help them avoid these pitfalls.

At the end of camp we all posed for one last group shot, and home we came! I loved my time, and from what I could tell the girls loved it as well. I'm so grateful for this opportunity I have to serve in this amazing program, with the amazing leaders I am able to associate with and work side by side with. They are such wonderful examples, both for the Young Women, and for me!

I'm going to link up to FMM...but I won't be able to come visit everyone until I get all my camp laundry done, and unpacked, and house cleaned...I am so missing you ladies though, I promise to be by soon!

Friday, July 17, 2009

Purity.

I'm almost home! Have you missed me? Even though I'm writing this post in advance, I can GUARANTEE that I've missed you! I'm sure I'm going through some major withdrawals by this point!

Today's theme at camp is Purity. I forgot to take pictures of my handout! But I'll still tell you about it.

I used the following scripture:

"Who shall ascent to the hill of the Lord? Or who shall stand in His holy place?

He that hath clean hands, and a pure heart; who hath not lifted up his soul unto vanity, nor sworn deceitfully.

He shall receive the blessing from the Lord, and righteousness from the God of his salvation."

~Psamls 24: 3-5

I made small little scrolls that contained this scripture, and attached them to a mini bottle of hand sanitizer.

Keeping themselves pure from the evils of today's society will be one of the most important things these Young Women can do to ensure their greatest happiness and brightest future. I pray daily to know how to help them realize this.

Thursday, July 16, 2009

Happy Birthday To Me!!!

Well, I'm sorry I can't spend my birthday with you all, but I'm thrilled to be spending it with the Young Women at camp.

Today's theme is Faith. I used this wonderful quote from President Hinckley, and made these fun cookie pops to give the girls. When I get back I'll share my recipe and how to make them.



I need to say a special thank you to some wonderful ladies I have met through this blog who made a special effort to help me feel loved on this day. Thank you so much...you know who you are, and I will do a special post about that when I return.
I hope you are all having a wonderful Thursday!
Our strength is our faith in the Almighty. May our faith shine forth as the sunlight of the morning.
~President Gordon B. Hinckley

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Spirit

The theme in camp today is The Spirit. It's so important for us to know, and especially young girls to know that they can receive guidance and direction by living lives that will allow them to feel the promptings of the Holy Ghost. Keeping our minds open and receptive to feeling the Spirit is they way that we will eventually be able to enjoy the blessings of Eternal Life.

In 2 Nephi 9:39 it says "to be spiritually minded is life eternal". I saw on http://www.sugardoodle.net/ that someone pointed out that the acronym for this scripture is SMILE.

So I got these cute little smiley face noise-makers and attatched the quote. I hope it helps the girls remember.


I'm all packed and ready to leave, Cowgirl seems to be doing better and we still don't have a car, but I think they'll be okay without me until Friday! I also got a special surprise today that I'll tell you all about when I get back...and I promise to get caught up on my visits! Thanks again for all your support and kind words this past couple of weeks...I love you all!

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Charity

"Real charity is not something you give away; it is something that you acquire and make a part of yourself. And when the virtue of charity becomes implanted in your heart, you are never the same again." -Marvin J. Ashton


Charity is the theme for camp today. I love how this quote describes the true essence of charity as not something you give, but something you actually acquire as a part of yourself, and your heart. I think that true charity is not an action, but an actual character trait. For my handout I found these really cute wedding bubbles in multiple colors that have a little "heart" handle, and wand. I made some little streamers with hearts on the end in coordinating colors, and attached the quote from Marvin J. Ashton. I also sprayed some glitter on the paper hearts! Glitter makes everything better!

I join the girls and other leaders tomorrow afternoon! I can't wait!



We've also had another mishap at our house. I've decided I'm just ready for this year to be over! My little cowgirl fell yesterday, and bashed her jaw hard on the edge of the counter. She scraped the heck out of it, and also is having pain when she moves it back and forth. I'm a little worried, and I can't decide whether I need to take her in or not. She can eat okay, but sometimes the pain gets a lot worse, and sometimes she says it feels lots better. Should I just give it a few days? Or should I take her in...just to be safe? We're self employed, and the medical bills are piling up! Not that that matters in the face of my children's health...it's just something I take into consideration now, when deciding whether to rush into the dr. or not!




Well, I'm off to make sugar cookies with my kids! They weren't too happy yesterday when I packed up every single cookie I had made Sunday, and decorated Monday morning, and sent them off to girl's camp! So I promised them we'd make some for us today! Hope you're all having a fabulous Tuesday!

Monday, July 13, 2009

Girl's Camp Or Bust!



Well, I've just bid farewell to all my cute little camper girls, and the rest of the Young Women's Presidency. They're on their way to set up camp. I will be joining them Wednesday night and returning home with them on Friday. I'm really sad to stay back and miss the first couple of days, but we still don't have a car.

All the girls met with their gear at 12:30 today at Andrea's (our YW president) house. We have 3 men also driving up and helping haul everything we'll need to take care of 16 Young Women and 4-6 leaders for 5 days! There is A LOT! I hope we got everything!

One of my responsibilities was to be in charge of the nightly handouts. They're to leave on each of the girls' pillows in their tents, kind of like the pillow mint at a hotel. The theme for the Young Men and Young Women in the church this year is:

"Be thou an example of the believers, in word, in conversation, in charity, in spirit, in faith, in purity". (1 Timothy 4:12).


For camp we took a different principle from that scipture each day for a daily theme. So each day, activites, devotionals, the "nightly news" and all the handouts will be centered around that theme. I thought I would share my handouts with you each day this week, and give you a little glimpse of what we'll be focusing on each day of camp!

The theme for today is "word and conversation". I got some little plastic hand tools and titled it "Are You Building?" I used a quote from Sister Bonnie D. Parkin, who served as Relief Society General President and also served in the Young Women's General Presidency, and the idea that we should use our words to build, not tear down.

I think this is especially important for young people to remember, in the way they interact with, and treat each other.





We used the scout trailer to carry a bunch of our gear, and Kiirsten (1st counselor) made a pink vinyl cutout that says "Girl's Camp Or Bust!" and stuck it on the back of the trailer! We'll leave it there when we return the trailer, and see how long it takes the scouts to notice!

I can't wait to join them! I'll schecule the daily handout posts before I leave, and I'll be back Friday with all my adventures to share!

"We're not required to do what Moroni did and ride through the town with the title of liberty, but we do need to be kind in word and conversation and speak with kindness and respect"

~ Sister Bonnie D. Parkin

Saturday, July 11, 2009

When it rains, it pours...

Thanks to everyone for all the support and sweet comments you've left me during my pity-fest this week. It really means a lot to me.

Of course it looks like I have one more piece of bad news to share with you...lets review:

Receiving the $500 bill from daughter's near-loss of finger at the hands of scissor-wielding other daughter...check.

Sidekick being too sick to accompany me on concert event of the decade...check.

Husband falling and breaking wrist, rendering him unable to work...check (we haven't seen this bill yet).

Mother who would have assisted husband during Las Vegas absence coming down with Pneumonia...check.

Selling the tickets I've cherished in my drawer for months to eager Seattle girl who will now get the chance to tackle Joey instead of me...check.

OUR ONLY FAMILY CAR BASICALLY BLOWING UP on the way home from son's violin lesson...check.

Yes my friends, I am currently without a vehicle. Hubby has his work van, which seats only himself and a passenger. Our motor is toast. We either need a completely new engine...which we've received ridiculous quotes for, or another car. Have I mentioned my husband is currently unable to work?

Unfortunately, although we've been trying hard to pay off our debts, we haven't built up a sufficient rainy day savings account to cover this. We SOOOO don't want to get a car loan, as we paid our car off a couple of years ago, and it felt fantastic! Also, we will have a hard time qualifying, since we own our own business, we don't have verifyable income...and they're being pretty strict these days on approving loans!

Please keep your fingers crossed that we will be able to find a car in our price range that will fit our family and be dependable! Because of the situation, and husband having no way go get anywhere with the kids without a car that fits them, it looks like I'm missing girl's camp. Or at least part of it. Hopefully we'll be able to figure something out!

Needless to say...a soccer game to take my mind of the concert I'm missing tonight is not happening. The stadium isn't in walking distance!

Okay...I'm done complaining. I know all these things are so minor compared to the trials many others are facing at this time. Like, my house hasn't been struck by lightning, and at least my husband's wrist doesn't look like this. You are in my thoughts and prayers Shawn! So many others are also facing heartbreaking loss, and devastating circumstances at this time, so I know I am very fortunate.

Speaking of that amazing lady, Shawn...my bright shining star for this week is that I won her fabulous giveaway! I'm so excited and my dog doesn't have to be repremanded anymore for sneaking onto the couches!


Perhaps this means the tides are turning? I hope so!

But really, I have so much to be thankful for. A healthy (relatively), happy family, a roof over our heads, enough food to eat, support from wonderful family and amazing friends, living in the greatest country on earth, and a testimony of the Gospel of Jesus Christ. These things, and many others are why I consider myself truly rich.

I hope you're all enjoying your Saturday...I can truthfully say, I'm going to enjoy mine!

Thursday, July 9, 2009

Here's what I think...

Since I'm sad about missing my concert, I think I should totally win Shawn's Dog Lover's Giveaway. Don't you think?

Here's why: This is Ty.


Yes I know Ty is a dumb name for a girl dog. She was a year old when we got her, and she knew her name, so we didn't think we should change it on her. Want to know what's even dumber? Ty is short for Tyrant. Who names a female dog Tyrant? Especially a female dog who is extremely gentle with kids, loves everyone, and actually cowers under the piano bench, trembling when she gets in trouble? Dumb I say.

This is Ty laying in her bed. See how well she doesn't fit?


Now we're not horrible people...she's had 2 other beds that were large enough to fit her. She never used them. She always curled up in a ball on a pile of dirty laundry, or a blanket the kids left out. Like a tiny tight little ball. When hubby came home with this she curled up in it and it was hers. She has since started laying more sprawled out, but still uses this thing. It's kinda funny, but kinda sad.

I didn't want a dog. We've tried that before, and although I'm not an animal hater, and I grew up with dogs, I just didn't want to be bothered with another thing that I had to take care of. Plus... dogs smell. They just do...I'm sorry.

But hubby saw an ad that the family she was with needed to find her a new home because of their landlord, and he REALLY wanted her. I said "no". He showed up with her one night and it's now been 18 months....I guess she's staying.

Ty's not allowed on the couches. I soooo don't want to be that family that smells like a dog, and has dog hair all over them whenever they go anywhere. Or that house where people are afraid to sit on the furniture because they know they'll stand up with hair all over them. Ty doesn't understand this and when we are gone, she makes herself comfortable on the couch. Sometimes she even sneaks up there at nighttime when we're all asleep. Of course as soon as she's caught she jumps down and runs underneath the aforementioned piano bench and cowers down pathetically as if we're going to beat her or something. Which, by the way, we don't...in case you were worried.

The thing is I REALLY hate when there is dog-smell, or dog hair on the couch. Like seriously so much that I have actually considered finding her a different home. But I just can't bring myself to do it. She is sweet, and so good with children, but she's a big enough dog to be intimidating...I always bring her to the door with me when I'm alone and someone I'm not expecting knocks. Kinda like...if you're a bad guy, well I have a big dog so there. Plus I'm alone most nights with the kids, and I love the security I feel having her there with us. Okay, I admit it, as much as I don't want to be a dog owner...I've grown kind of attached.

She is here to stay, but I need a solution for her incurable couch-sleeping! I think Shawn has found the answer for me at Bedroomfurniture.com ...go here to check it out. But don't enter...because I need this!

What about you? Are you a dog person? Or do you prefer cats? Or like me, would you rather just take your kids to the zoo than actually own an animal in your home?