Friday, April 19, 2013

Friday's Letters

Husband eating a kangaroo burger from The Cellar

Dear husband, somebody has a birthday on Thursday...YOU! For a whole two months, we are the same age. Surprise! I bought you a house. If anyone wants to get you a birthday present, here are some ideas: lawn mower, weed eater, ladder and gift cards to Lowe's or Home Depot. Hehe! Dear new house, only 11 more days until our projected closing date. It will be here before we know it. I've already got the electric company and Internet company set to turn on the goods on May 1st! I'm just hoping and praying all goes according to plan now. I'll see you tonight when we measure the kitchen floor. Dear Bentley, what is your new obsession with my earrings? Every time I sit down, you try your hardest to lick them off my ears. I can't wait to show you your new backyard tonight! Dear Taste of Newnan, I ate like a fatty last night. Thank goodness you are only twice a year. I'm STILL full.

Me. Nuff said. ;)

Wednesday, April 17, 2013

The Construction Paper Moving Strategy

Operation move is in full swing with less than two weeks until closing. I've been playing around with some designs for our moving announcements and I think I've found a favorite. Once I get them sent out, I'll share them with the blog world and offer them up in my Etsy shop.

However, today we are going to focus on having an organized move.

By nature, I tend to be a control freak like order. Nothing about moving is orderly. That said, it is safe to say that having my life stuffed in boxes and stacked around the apartment is making me a nervous wreck. Ha! I'm also driving my poor, long-suffering husband crazy. Thank the Lord he loves me cause we'd have problems if he didn't. It also doesn't help this will be my FOURTH time moving in the last year. At least, it will be the last for a good long while!

Through the chaos of moving, I have managed to create a packing/moving system which is somewhat pacifying my need for order.

Packing Supplies:
- Boxes (of all sizes)
- Packing tape
- Newspaper and plastic bags
- Big, fat permanent marker
- Big pack of construction paper
- Scissors

Moving can be expensive. Lucky for us, we are only moving about a mile and half down the road and don't need to hire a moving company. However, moving can still get expensive if you have to buy boxes and wrapping material. Here's some moving-on-a-budget tips for you:

- Hunt for boxes everywhere. I asked my boss to save any boxes the daycare would be throwing out for me. Let me tell you she loaded me up! R.J. did the same and brought them home from the grocery stores he works at. Also, enlist the help of your family and friends in your box hunting escapade. Our family and friends are still bringing us boxes and we certainly aren't going to turn them down!
- If you know you will be moving, start hording your plastic bags from your weekly trips to the grocery store. Plastic bags make excellent packing material. Also, don't forget all those towels and sheets in your linen closet will make for great packing material!
-Gather your packing supplies into one spot. Pick a small box and put all your small supplies like the permanent marker, construction paper, scissors and tape in it.

Now, it is time to explain my color-schemed packing system.

Assign each room in your new home a color from your pack of construction paper. Here are my categories: Master, Bathrooms, Living Room, Kitchen, Bedroom, Office, Storage and Basement.

When I get a box securely packed, I grab its coordinating color of paper and write the room on the paper. On moving day, I will put a piece of the construction paper on the door or wall of the room in which the same colored boxes go. Make sense? That way, those who are not familiar with the layout of our new house will be able to find the right room for the right boxes. Maybe it is overkill, but it gives me peace of mind. We all know you can't put a dollar sign on that!

I do recommend designating one room to keep your boxes in. Of course, I have separated out the boxes by room in my designated moving room, but to each his own!

Happy packing!

Bentley sleeping while mommy packs!

Monday, April 15, 2013

PaperLark and Our Move

Our mound of empty boxes ready to be packed!

Hello Friends!

The packing madness has begun! I'm planning a post on moving organization this week once I get enough boxes packed.

That said, two weeks from tomorrow is our closing date! WOOHOO!

I just wanted to give my followers a heads up that my Etsy shop, PaperLark Studio, will be closed April 29 to May 3 for our big move. I will accept orders until Friday, April 26th. We've got a lot of work to do to get our house in tip-top shape and to get us moved in.

Let the packing officially begin!

Friday, April 12, 2013

Friday's Letters

Bentley under the computer desk distracting his momma. How can you ignore that face?! 

Dear Husband, I envy your ability to go with the flow. I wish I was more like you and not such a control freak. This appraisal thing is about to drive me nuts. On the bright side, we've got some fun money left over this week. Wanna go on a hot date tonight with me? Dear Bentley, I have come to the conclusion that you do not remember your first spring. You have loved the new weather so much. You are so stinkin' adorable when you are chasing the shadows of the butterflies. However, I don't know why you eat every dandelion in sight. They are fuzzy and I can't imagine they taste very good. Dear boxes both packed and unpacked, you are stressing me out. As a person who likes order, you are completely throwing me off! Not to mention, you take up a lot of space when I don't have that much to begin with. Dear PaperLark Studio, I am SO excited! We've got our first official advertisement up on a blog! Ahhh! Dear Friends, you should all go now and look for our ad on the sidebar (and click it of course!).

Until next time,


Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Growing Pains


It's been a painful week thus far.

We are painfully waiting for the appraisal on the house to come back. We were hoping to have it back within our 10 day "due diligence" period. In our contract with the bank, we agreed to pay the difference if the house appraised under our agreed sale price. However, the appraisal company did not make our 10 day deadline which would have allowed us to pull out with our earnest money in hand. Therefore, I cannot stress how pertinent it is the appraisal come back equal to or more than our sale price.

However, you can be assured that the journalist in me did ALL her research before letting that due diligence period expire. If we were not confident it would appraise, we would have pulled out yesterday. I found all public records on the property as well as an appraisal from last year which was well above our sale price. It is good to know my journalism degree isn't going to waste!

That said, please continue to pray for R.J. and I as we jump this last hurdle to getting our almost-dream home.

The other painful part of my week was my fault. On Monday, I tried to saw my finger off with a kitchen knife. Holy cow, did it hurt! I even cut through my fingernail. At least, when I do something, I don't do it half way. That's all I got to say.

Hopefully, my extremities will be spared any more knife accidents and we get through the rest of this week pain free!

Until next time,

Monday, April 8, 2013

Oh, The Places You Will Go: DIY USA TRAVELS MAP


A couple weeks ago, I posted a status on Facebook that I had made a trip to my favorite store in the whole world - Hobby Lobby. When I make a trip to my favorite store in the whole world, it usually means some serious crafting is about to ensue. This time was not any different!

While browsing Pinterest (of course), I ran across this cork board travel map used to document trips.

Photo by Ciera Design
Through PaperLark Studio, my business has "traveled" great distances so to speak. I thought a cork board map might be an interesting way to document where my invitations and announcements have ventured to so far. I figured it would make an interesting decor piece for my future studio and serve as a reminder/motivation that people across the United States love my work.

Using the tutorial from Ciera Design, I pieced together my own United States "sales" map of my first 100 sales.

I learned that Chicago loves PaperLark. There were so many orders from Chicago, they overtook the state! 

Anyway, here's my quick tutorial.

  • Printer
  • Map of USA (got mine from the tutorial from Ciera Designs!)
  • Cork board
  • Scissors
  • Paint
  • Paint Brush
  • Pencil
  • Map pins
  • Paper

  1. Print and cut out your map.
  2. Tape down your cut out map and trace around it with the pencil.

Tape down your cut out map!

Trace the map. I used a paint pen just to show you the trace more clearly. Don't make fun of my disproportionate Florida. 
3. Paint around your map and the inside of your map (if you want). Took me about three coats to get the paint coverage I wanted.

4. While the paint dries, cut some paper strips and write all your destinations. Once the paint is dry, tack your destination strips in its respective location with a map pin.


If I decide I'm tired of my map, I've got enough left over paint to cover my map and use it as a regular cork board.

Time for me to get back to packing. *SIGH*


Wednesday, April 3, 2013

The Coolest Cupcakes EVER!

Picture courtesy of Jennifer La Rosa

Among the many things I love about PaperLark Studio, I love when my clients really love my work and incorporate into their events. Jennifer La Rosa was kind enough to send this picture of the cupcakes she made for a baby shower she hosted last month. How stinkin' adorable, right?!

I thought these were beyond awesome and had to share them with you. She did such a fabulous job! Jennifer purchased my "Oh Boy" Baby Shower Invitations. Thank you so much for sharing!

Also, just to update you all on life's latest happenings: 

We are doing the home inspection on Saturday and the appraisal has been "ordered" to meet our April 9th deadline.

AND a HUGE prayer answered this week for my mother. As you may know, she's been undergoing treatment for Hepatitis C. After three months of treatment, her blood was tested to see if the treatment was effectively killing the virus. I am beyond excited to share that there was NO virus was detected in her blood. God is truly good and has answered our prayers. 

She will continue to take her treatment for the next year so she isn't out of the woods yet BUT there is light at the end of the tunnel. 

Until next time,

Monday, April 1, 2013

Contracts and Closings

Long time no see!

I'm so sorry about that. As some of you already know, last week was quite the week in the Winslett household. However, my absence is about to be explained (and hopefully forgiven)!


And not just any house. The perfect house. Long story short - it was a bank-owned home that we (along with SEVEN other potential buyers) put an offer on. Thursday evening, our realtor calls us to say it was between us and one other offer. We had to put in our biggest and best and hope it was enough. After a completely sleepless night, we received the call the following evening that our offer had been accepted. BAM! We signed the under-contract-papers on Saturday and shared the great news with our families on Easter. Today, I share the news with you!

Without further adieu, I'd like you for the first time to lay your eyes on our almost-home.

Being a foreclosure, it has been sitting empty for a while which explains why the gutters need to be cleaned out, the dirty roof and the shutter that's fallen off. However, with a little elbow grease, it'll shine up like a new penny!

As for the closing date, that is still to be determined, but we anticipate it will be at the very end of this month or the beginning of May. 

That said, we will be doing the inspection and appraisal in the next week. R.J. and I ask that you would pray for a good inspection and appraisal as well as a smooth closing process. We are beyond excited and cannot wait to share our new home with you!

Time for me to get packing!