Sunday, January 15, 2017

National Hat Day

Happy National Hat Day!!!  This is an important occasion as it's also Happily Ever Hatter's third birthday!!!  It's hard to believe that three years ago, I finally took a giant leap of faith and opened my Etsy shop.  Of course, I'd been making ears for about a year before that.  It's amazing to see how far I've come since then:

I've had 75 Etsy sales.  I've had numerous sales outside of Etsy.  I can think of at least 50 orders from friends that I've had through PayPal.  Then, I've done a few others for friends and family separate from that.  I've made numerous ears for Eliot and me.  One of these days, I should really count just how many I've done.

I'm incredibly humbled to have just under 850 shop favorites on Etsy.  (Quick!  Three more people go favorite my shop to make it an even 850!)  Each of the items in my shop have likes, and some of those numbers still astound me!  I have 707 fans on my Facebook page.  My Instagram is fairly new, and I haven't put much effort into it, but I still have 226 followers.  And I think that's pretty good since I've only made 99 posts.

The support I've received from everyone is amazing.  I've gotten so many compliments from people in the parks and through my social media accounts.  It's so encouraging to have people genuinely like the stuff you're creating, designing and making.  I've also had many repeat customers, and that's the greatest compliment I can receive.

And I've got so much more in store.  I haven't even begun to scratch the surface of my design list.  I have supplies for so many designs.  I just have to take the time to sit down and bring them to life.  Eliot's got a ton of new IllusionEars designed.  We literally can't keep up with making them as fast as he's designing them.  We've listed more of the designs, and we have many more that will be coming to my shop soon.  It's really exciting.  (As always, I'll keep you in the loop with Happily Ever Hatter updates.)

Thank you everyone for your love and support of my little hat business!  I'm so happy that I finally took the leap of faith and put my designs out there.  It was scary, but it's been a very rewarding and successful three years and I feel so incredibly blessed.

Happy Birthday Happily Ever Hatter!  To many more yEars of making mouse ears!!! °o°

Saturday, January 14, 2017

I Can See Clearly Now the Pink Eye is Gone...

Hey Guys!  After 10 days of resting, relaxing a bit and getting healthy, I'm back.  My double conjunctivitis is gone and I can once again see clearly (for the most part).  I've been having a hard time using my computer for long periods of time so I've had to stay away from blogging.  Now, I'm feeling much better, and the only blurriness I have is from the fact that upping the lense prescription in my glasses is very over due.

Eliot and I continue to follow each other to the walk in clinic.  Last February, we both went in within the same week due to sickness.  This year, it's pink eye and a crushed toe.  No sooner was I in the clear with my pink eye, then Eliot stubbed his little toe on our giant 4x4 IKEA bookshelf.  It looked horrible and after about 48 hours, we decided we better get it checked. After an x-ray, it was determined that it wasn't broken.  But he's got to take it easy on it for the next two weeks.

Other than the pink eye and toe mess, 2017 has treated us well so far.  Eliot and I have continued to be pretty busy, but that's normal.  Our lives continue to be filled with work, creating new ear designs, making soap and working on our house.  I know our day to day lives don't sound very glamorous, but it's all of this hard work that allows us to enjoy time at our favorite place with Mickey.  So it's all totally worth it!

Speaking of Mickey, it's hard to believe that 40 days from now I'll be getting on a plane to go visit him again.  I've been down in our basement training for the Princess Half on our new treadmill.  I'm not doing anything crazy, but speed walking a few miles a day is better than nothing.  I'm hoping to graduate to jogging a little next week.  I'm terrified of losing my balance with my bad knee, but I'm getting more comfortable each day.  Plus, this is the most committed I've ever been to training!  Hopefully it'll pay off next month!

Of course, with a Maine winter, you're bound to get a little snow.  Right before the end of last year, we were pelted with a snow storm.  It varied a lot town to town, but our official town amount was 2 feet of snow.  We've had two days of January thaw this week, and it was in the 50's!  Most of our snow is melted down now.  And our driveway finally seems to be ice free... for now anyways!

Eliot and I continue to work on organizing our house.  We're still trying to get stuff unpacked and put away.  It's slowly starting to look how we want it to!  I'm hoping that we'll get a lot done this winter.  The cold winter weather is the perfect excuse to stay inside and get stuff done!  It's going to be another house project filled weekend!

We've also been busy watching the San Jose Sharks.  As I've mentioned, Eliot's a huge fan.  And let's face it, I've become one too.  They play every few nights and we usually stay up to watch the games.  Of course, tonight, my New England Patriots have their first playoff game of this season.  They're #1 in the AFC East again, and they're projected to win tonight's game.  Nevertheless, it's not over until it's over.  I'm sure I'll be sitting on the edge of my seat for the entire game.  Go Pats!!!

And I haven't forgotten about my Christmas or New Year recaps.  Now that I'm able to be on my computer for longer periods of time, I'll be sure to tell you about those!  I've got so many things I want to write about!  I'm so glad I can see clearly again!   °o°

Wednesday, January 4, 2017

The Diseased Rodent

Hi friends!  I just wanted to check in really quick.  I had a few blog posts planned for yesterday and today, but I got a bit sidetracked.  Yesterday, I woke up with a lot of pressure in my right eye.  As the day progressed, it grew itchy and started to burn- along with my left eye.  I knew when I left work that the prognosis wasn't good.

When Eliot got home from work, we headed over to the local walk in clinic, and sure enough, I have conjunctivitis in both of my eyes.  I'm not sure how I got it, but after all the places we went over New Years, I could have picked it up anywhere.

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Thankfully, I caught it early and I don't really have the awful gunk that comes along with it.  When I had pink eye as a kid it was awful.  Yesterday, you wouldn't have even known anything was wrong with me by looking at me.  Today, my eyes are a little pink, but not bad. However, they're a little sticky and they do itch occasionally.  Luckily, my eye drops seem to help as soon as I put them in!  Plus, the awful pressure is gone!

Eliot has dubbed me "the diseased rodent".  I reminded him that our beloved Mickey Mouse is also technically a rodent, but Eliot told me he's the cute kind.  I agreed, and stated that the only "disease" Mickey has is the "here take all my money" disease.

So, I've spent today home on the couch.  I'm super contagious for the first 24 hours, so we decided it was best that I stay home and not contaminate our patients and the office.  I had high hopes of being super productive, but in the end, a day on the couch was definitely what the doctor ordered.  I even took a two hour nap!

Hopefully, I'll be back in business soon!  After getting my New Years goals in order, I'm really motivated and the last thing I want is to sit around and do nothing.  I really just want to dive in.  I also need to recap our Christmas and New Year's adventures!  And I still have a few other posts I need to catch up on!  But, I also know my limitations.  For now, I rest.  I'll leave conquering the world for another day.  °o°

Monday, January 2, 2017

My 2017 Disney Goals

Hello 2017.  I'm so excited for this year.  Each new year presents a chance for a fresh start, another blank slate, and the opportunity to write another 365 pages in the next chapter of my life.  Of course, the start of the new year also means another set of goals!

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The past few years, I've started a tradition of publicly posting some of my goals here on my blog.  At the end of the year, I write a recap where I see what I accomplished.  I've never completed a full list, but it's something to aspire to.  I've been making myself goal lists for about 10 years now.  It's something that I genuinely look forward to each year.  (Here are my past posts: 2014 goals2014 recap2015 goals2015 recap, 2016 goals, 2016 recap.)

This year, I've decided to change it up a bit.  I've decided to nix the blog goals as part of my official list.  I found that I was too focused on getting the blog goals done.  Of course, I still have goals for my blog, but I think those should be separate from my Disney goals.   Plus, last year I conquered some of the ones that had been plaguing me.  Now, I want to focus on some of the creative goals that I haven't had a chance to accomplish!

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I'm really excited about my Disney goals for this year.  A few of these have been on my list since I started making these public.  This year, I'd really like to dive headfirst into a few of the more creative ones.  I'm sure it'll be a challenge, but I'm ready for it!  Bring it on 2017!!!

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Melissa's Blog and Disney Goals for 2017

1.)  Go to Walt Disney World- This is always my first goal of every new year.  Walt Disney World is my happy place, and it's always a goal to go back!

2.)  Go to Disneyland- Walt Disney World might be my home away from home, but in the past few years, Disneyland has stolen my heart.  I definitely want to go back this year!

3.)  Attend the D23 Expo- This is a new addition to my list!  Eliot went to the D23 Expo in 2015 and had a blast.  This year, I want to go for my first time!!!

4.) Go to Disney at Christmas Time- We've been at Walt Disney World for many Halloween celebrations.  In fact, since 2010, I've been to Mickey's Not So Scary Halloween Party seven times.  I really miss visiting the parks at Christmas time.  This year, I want to go to Disney during the Christmas celebrations.  Decorations, parades, music, specialty foods- yes!!!

5.) Participate in the Glass Slipper Challenge- It's hard to believe this is only a few weeks away!  I'm not as prepared as I'd hoped to be, but I'm optimistic.  I'm going to try my hardest!

6.) Participate in the Pixie Dust Challenge- I'm less terrified of this goal.  Hopefully, I'll have learned a thing or two at the Princess Half Weekend and I'll feel prepared for this one!

7.) Earn my Pink Coast to Coast Medal- If #5 and #6 go well, I'll have finally earned a Coast to Coast medal, and it'll be the pink one I've always wanted!

8.) Sign up for a 2018 RunDisney Race- Eliot and I are hoping to continue our RunDisney journey in 2018.  I haven't decided which one I'm going to do, but he's got a few he plans on participating in.  I'll see how Princess and Tink go before making up my mind on which one!

9.) Have Disney Movie Nights- There are certain Disney movies I've seen over and over again.  Others, I haven't seen in years.  This year, I want to watch as many as I can.  Not only do I enjoy them, but they give me inspiration for new product designs!

10.) Have Disney Board Game Nights- Eliot and I have so many board games.  I love playing them.  This year, I want to unpack them and break a few out to play!

11.)  Have a Disney Themed Party- I love throwing parties.  This year, I'm hoping that we'll finally get the house ready for our housewarming party!

12.) Read Disney Books- I have so many wonderful books.  I'd like to take some time to read through my Imagineering books.  I also have art books, leadership books and more.

13.) Disneybound/Themed Outfit Challenge- Last year, I had a goal to wear 25 character or attraction Disneybound or themed outfits, and I'm going to do that again.  Last year, I didn't get to Disneybound as much as I wanted to, so I'm going to focus more on that this year!

14.) Make Disney Accessories- I really enjoying creating accessories to wear.  This year, I'd like to learn to make infinity scarves.  I'd also like to work on some more custom dresses, skirts, jewelry, hair accessories and handbags.

15.) Take Online Storyboard Class and Art Class- This is one of those goals that keeps getting rolled over to the next year.  I'd really like to check this one off in 2017!

16.) Design a Miniature Scene- I love things in miniature.  I've got a few ideas of scenes to make and I'd really like to make more complex one this year!

17.) Design an Imagineering Project- Eliot and I love brainstorming about new attractions, restaurants, stores, and hotel resorts.  This year, I'd like to actually start doing some design work on a fantasy Imagineering project!

18.) Paint Disney Art- I have so many fun ideas!  This year, I'd like to make a few pieces, especially since we're trying to get our house organized!  I've got plans for artwork in our kitchen/living/dining room, bedrooms, and bathrooms.  Hopefully, I'll have plenty of pictures of my artwork to share by the end of 2017!

19.) Make Disney Decor for the Holidays- I love making customized holiday decor!  I've got a list that's super long, and I'd like to cross a few more of those off the list!  However, I'm not holding myself to a specific number.  I'd rather just let my creativity flow!

20.) Decorate House with Disney Touches- Eliot's and my main goal of 2017 is to get settled in our house.  Along with the artwork and holiday decor, I'd like to add some little Disney touches throughout our house.  We've bought a bunch of items to display, and I've also got a few more handmade designs in mind.  Hopefully, we'll be able to get our house painted, everything unpacked and organized so I can work on this!

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Just like every other year, I've certainly got my work cut out for me.  But, like always, I am really excited about the possibilities!  I'm going to make 2017's word of the year DREAM.  In the past, I've focused on creating, growth, and blossoming.  This year, the sky is the limit and I want to go wherever my dreams take me.  I want to focus less on hitting numbers and more on achieving my creative potential, my goals and my dreams.

So let's do this 2017.  Let this be the year that more dreams come true.  °o°

Sunday, January 1, 2017

January 2017 Calendar

Happy New Year!!!  Welcome 2017!  I have a feeling that this is going to be a great year.  I've got lots of goals, fun things to look forward to and many plans for my little blog!!!  I'm ready to dive in!  Let's kick the year off in style with my free January 2017 Mickey and Minnie printable calendar!!!

Like last year, I've also made a blank version of the 2017 calendar without the holidays to make them more versatile.  Over the past 4 years, my calendars have been used for lots of things including: Disney trip countdowns, teachers' Disney themed classrooms, training calendars for runDisney events and to surprise kids with a Disney vacation!

Here's the link to download the January 2017 PDF version of the printable.

Here's the link to download the Blank January 2017 PDF version of the printable.

Feel free to link this post up to Pinterest or Facebook so your friends and family can have a fun Mickey and Minnie calendar too!  Let's spread the Disney Magic!!!  °o°

Note: I've made calendars through 2017.  I don't post the PDF links on my blog until the beginning of each month.  If you're looking for a particular month and would like me to email it to you ahead of my post going live, you can send my blog an email at mydisneylifeblog[at]  I'll send you the PDFs directly as soon as I can!  :-)