My Wonderful Walls Blog
How to Embrace Play as an Adult 0
As children, we’re encouraged to play games, use our imagination and have fun. We learn through play from a very early age. But once we are adults, society puts less of an emphasis on the notion of play and for some the idea of play is saved exclusively for competitive sports. In his book “Play”, author and psychiatrist Stuart Brown, MD, talks about how play is like oxygen and says ".…it’s all around us, yet goes mostly unnoticed or unappreciated until it is missing.” Play is vital for problem solving, creativity and relationships. But with all of the time we dedicate to family, our jobs and other responsibilities, it’s a challenge to find time for play.
Unleash Your Inner Child
How can we incorporate play into our adult lives? One way of course is to spend time playing with our children. But as our kids grow up or for those who don’t have children, what to do? Maybe it’s time you thought of play in a different way. Unless you're a frequent attendee of Burning Man, you're going to have to get creative. Play can mean anything from reading aloud from a funny book to a friend and sharing a good laugh or just being silly in the moment. Surrounding yourself with fun loving, playful people is a great way to encourage play in your own life.
The article, The Importance of Play for Adults on First Things First asks the reader to imagine they are walking down a city street and from around the corner, they hear laughter and hollering and assume it’s children playing. Then imagine the surprise to discover it is a group of adults playing some type of blindfolded dodge ball, clearly having a great time. It goes on to say, “Believe it or not, the adults who were seen playing blindfolded were actually working. This playfulness was part of a work activity. When finished, almost without exception, each person commented on how good it felt to play and how energized they felt. When they sat down to actually work on a project, many commented that they could feel the high level of energy in the room.”
Adult Game Night
So playing in the workplace can increase productivity and job satisfaction. Then what other ways can we encourage play in our day to day grown-up lives? How about remembering our love of certain board games or card games in our younger years and bringing them front and center by hosting a game night? Instead of watching a movie or game on television, bring your friends and family together with a little healthy competition. A quick search of Pinterest and you can find all sorts of ideas for hosting a game night. Everything from fun party décor, like a printable DIY Scrabble banner, to game night snacks, like Individual Seven Layer Dip Cups can be found to help you pull off a night to remember.
Playful Wall DecalsAnother way to show off your playful side is by adding some My Wonderful Walls wall décor to your home or office. We have a great collection of playful wall stickers for grown up spaces and of course, plenty for the kids too! How about a futuristic decal like Merlin’s Playground with art from artist Lyle Hatch? Or you could try a Minecraft inspired decal by French artist Florent Bodart, Craft with Care (pictured below). Say Go, a collage art wall sticker by Hollie Chastain would make a great statement in your living room or office, too! So many choices!
However you decide to embrace your playful side, you really can’t go wrong. Laughter, community and spirited communication are all tools to enhance your day to day life. So get out there and play!
Parents "To Be" Create Whimsical Forest Room for Baby McKenzie 1
Parents "to be" Charles and Genevieve Foxworthy knew without a shadow of a doubt, they were looking for a fox and forest themed room for their new baby girl on the way, McKenzie. Well, once they saw our site: mywonderfulwalls.com, they looked no further! Though we also sell sticker versions of our stencil kits, the Foxworthy's went the stencil route creating a beautiful and whimsical space for their new baby girl. Read the interview we had with Charles below to hear about their nursery decorating journey:
My Wonderful Walls: What gave you the idea and inspiration for such a creative nursery project?
Charles: We have always loved foxes and thought what better way to decorate a baby girls room then to litter it with fox and forest imagery. It is also a part of our family crest which help solidify the center piece of the fox.
MWW: For whom is this Forest Themed mural intended?
Charles: The mural is going to be for my yet to be born daughter McKenzie Marie.
MWW: What made you choose this theme and what made this mural a good fit for your project?
Charles: I picked out the Forest Friends kit, mainly we did this because it had a fox in it and we have always loved foxes.
MWW: What do you think your child's reaction will be to the wall mural when she first sees it?
Charles: Well, once I finished the project I brought my pregnant wife in the room and unborn baby McKenzie kicked her, so we think she’s pretty excited to live in there.
MWW: About how long did it take you to complete the project?
Charles: I think total it took me about 6-8 hours spread out over 3 days. Progress was slow going at first while I was figuring out the best way to use the stencils on the textured wall, but after that, when I started lining up multiple stencils that used the same colors, and I had about 5 brushes with different colors going at once, things sped up considerably.
MWW: What did you enjoy most about the your mural creation experience?
Charles: The best part about the creation of the mural was probably painting those foxes they are just so darn cute and I wanted to cuddle with them.
MWW: Did you add any personal touches to the mural/room other than what came with the kit? If so, what gave you the inspiration?
Charles: Being a woodworker, I made a heart that says, "Love" out of Purple Heart, Mahogany, and Koa. It was a blast to make as well and she will be able to put it up in her kid’s room one day. I also sew and make quilts as well as some other crafts, mainly learned from my mom.
MWW: Do you have a favorite piece or favorite scene you created? If so, please describe.
Charles: Yes, the pink shell’d turtle going to eat the mushrooms reminds me of Mario Brothers.
MWW: Do you have any helpful tips for people who use our stencil products?
Charles: I have some very helpful advice, first have a plan. Put as many stencils on the wall as possible. Then pick color to pain that is shared by most of the stencils you plan to paint. Then paint all the stencils with that color by the time you finish the first coat on all the stencils the first stencil should be ready for a second coat. And repeat the process. Also, don’t try to paint in strokes, dab the paint on, and put as little paint as possible on your brush. This will help prevent bleeding on a textured wall.
Charles: The only resource I used was the how to video on the Forest Friends main page. I also read the instructions that came with the kit. I found both resources pretty useful. It definitely helps to plan the mural out since the more pieces you can paint at once the faster it goes. And the instructional video helped with the technique for painting the stencils.
MWW: Tell us your overall experience with the stencil kit and with the My Wonderful Walls folks in general.
Charles: Everyone was very, very helpful. There was a little issue where McKenzie’s name was missing a capital 'K' and I let them know. They sent out 2 corrected name tags with the correct spelling immediately and I got it like 2 days later. Best customer service ever. <(Aww, thanks, Charles!)
MWW: What else would you like us to know about you and your project?—parents are important too!
Charles: Really, I just like to be unique and this project allowed me to make my daughter's room one-of-a-kind. There is no one on this planet who will have the same layout or room as her. I feel that this room is something special I can give to her even as a baby. I know she will grow to appreciate it, love it, and make it her own. I’m glad I also put up my little wood working heart of "Love" in there as well, since it will be something that can be remembered forever.
Well, I'd say baby McKenzie is in for a real treat! A unique forest room that will grow with her for years to come. Thank you Charles and Gen for sharing your experience and beautiful photos with us!
Calming lilac colored walls compliment room and stencil colors while creating a dreamy sense of wonder. See Charles' handmade "Love" plaque above the bed - perfect!
McKenzie's bi-plane stencil flying high over mirrored closet doors - cute!
Cuddly, plush foxes sit on McKenzie's dresser in the pic below, patiently awaiting her arrival. Also, don't miss the adorable matching deer tote in the corner! - super cute!!
Our Top 5 DIY Fall Decor Ideas 0
It’s that time of year again when our thoughts turn to pumpkins and apples and adding some color to our homes as the days get shorter and the summer tapestry starts to fade. If you’re on a budget and short on time, we’ve rounded up our five favorite do-it-yourself fall décor ideas! Check them out below:
If you’re a wine drinker, you can keep those corks and create something easy and cute to place on a table, mantle or shelve. Erika at My Gourmet Connection shows you how to make a wine cork pumpkin with just a few supplies you probably have at your house!
Have you seen all of the wonderful things you can make using pages of a favorite book? I absolutely love those kinds of crafts. This one from Sondra at Sondra Lyn at Home, combines rustic fall leaves and cream colored pages of a book cut into leaf shapes then hung on a piece of twine to make a banner across the mantle. You could use real leaves too but I think the store bought ones might last longer.
This Indian Corn Wreath only requires 3 items to make; the corn, a straw wreath and some hot glue. You’ll have the best looking door in your neighborhood in no time when you follow these instructions from Yvonne at StoneGable.
The smell of cinnamon says “Fall” and makes your home instantly more welcoming (unless of course you hate cinnamon). This easy candle idea comes courtesy of Beth at Home Stories A to Z. You can make this one with just 4 items and about 20 minutes!
A bowl made out of leaves? You betcha! This easy DIY bowl would be great to place on an entry table for keys, etc. or on a coffee table or mantle. Hello Lucky has all the instructions you need to make this simple, colorful leaf bowl.
Here’s a bonus idea for all you mason jar craft lovers:
Jill from Create Craft Love shows us how to create a colorful leaf decorated luminary with just a few easy steps. You could do so much with this including changing the shape to a pumpkin or an apple or using different colored paint and ribbon.
So even if it’s not quite cooling off where you live, you can start to take advantage of the inspiration of fall colors, smells and tastes to decorate your home. Enjoy these DIY ideas and let us know in the comments below what you’ll be trying or what your favorite fall craft/DIY is!
Pharmacy Puts People and Pets First With Paws Park Wall Mural 0
If you’ve ever filled a prescription at a pharmacy for yourself, your family or a pet, you know it can sometimes be stressful. Let’s face it, if you’re picking up a prescription it’s usually because someone isn’t feeling well. That was why John Platt, RPh, owner of The Wellness Pharmacy in Winchester, VA decided to add a Paws Park Wall Mural to his reception area. If he could make his customers smile a little when they came to see him, then maybe their day would be just a bit brighter. And because John is a dog lover and some of his favorite customers are the four-legged kind, he immediately gravitated to our dog and cat themed wall stickers.
The Wellness Pharmacy is a compounding pharmacy which means they fill the need when commercially available products don’t address a patient’s problem. John has been a pharmacist for over 30 years. He tells us that in his first job he was asked to make some special preparations for various patients when commercial products were not available. This is what inspired him to open a compounding pharmacy. Though the majority of his customers are people, veterinarian patients are a large part of his business. Sometimes helping his animal clients means coming up with new ways to deliver a medicine when an animal can’t or won’t take it orally. For example, many cats have thyroid problems but the owners are not able to get their pet to take pills. The Wellness Pharmacy staff can make a transdermal gel that can be applied to the inside of the cat's ear to deliver the medication through the skin and into the blood stream.
And John gets some funny requests from time to time like when the owner of a monkey he was making two liquid compounds for wanted some of the flavoring. Turned out the monkey refused to eat anything that wasn’t on the owner’s breath first.
An animal themed wall mural was a perfect fit for this busy pharmacy and when John went searching online for mural products he found My Wonderful Walls. After asking about making some custom additions to the Paws Park Wall Sticker Kit, John was happy to find he could add a few people and additional trees to the park scene. Though this was his first experience using wall decals, John found them very easy to work with and well worth the money. He painted a background sky and grass with a walking path first to make the mural really seem like a park. Then with the help of his wife Meta, his herbalist Deanna and two pharmacy technicians Diana and Connie, they added the stickers. The only difficulty they faced was putting up the custom large cherry tree which took three of them to get on the wall but is now his favorite part of the mural. He also really likes the white Great Dane and the personalized lamp post sign that reads “Wellness Park”.
Now that the mural is complete John says the reaction has been very positive and customers have even started bringing in pictures of their pets to add to the park. What a great way to make what can be for some a stressful time, a little bit easier! If you would like to add a dog and cat themed wall mural to your home or business, check out our Paws Park Wall Sticker Kit or stencil kit. And if you’re in the Winchester, VA area and in need of a compounding pharmacy, check out our friends at The Wellness Pharmacy.
John's granddaughter Kerry and his two dogs Cosmo (left) and Elmo (right)
Top Ten Dorm Decor Ideas from My Wonderful Walls 0
Do you have a son or daughter entering college this fall? Moving to a dorm is the first time living away from home for many students and for some it can be overwhelming. The right decor can make a big difference in how your student adapts to this change. While many schools have restrictions on what can and cannot be brought to the dorm, you can still make the transition a little easier with a little planning. Here are our top ten dorm décor must haves for any college student:
- Bedding: The biggest piece of furniture in most dorms is the bed. You’ll want to buy attractive, comfortable bedding that can be easily washed. Many dorms have extra large twin beds, so you’ll need to purchase twin XL sheets but check with your child’s school. Accents like throw pillows are fantastic and can add pops of color and comfort.
- Lighting: If your student’s dorm room is like most, the lighting is not ideal. A desk lamp and/or floor lamp is key but they can also add string lights or fairy lights to their dorm to give it a fun, whimsical look. Holiday lights can also be fun and make a great care package addition! Again, check with your school.
- Window treatments: Depending on how the dorm is set up, adding a curtain or window topper can make a big impact.
- Storage: Space and storage are the two things your student won’t have a lot of (besides sleep probably). Buy colorful bins or baskets for smaller items on their desk and larger bins for storage under the bed. Another great item that is multi purposed is a storage ottoman. Use it to store clothing, extra bedding or books then it can double as seating when a friend comes by.
- Wall décor: For fire safety, the school may limit how much may be hung on the walls and they will definitely have rules about how things are hung. Most dorm rooms have the same old white walls that are so boring. Back in our day, we had posters. But your student can amp up their walls with a beautiful fabric wall sticker or two. We offer many cool designs that are perfect for a college student and the beauty is if they find one that they love, keep the backing paper and they can bring it to their next dorm next year! Our decals aren’t just for walls either. Try them on the door, windows, mirrors or dresser. Wall stickers make a great gift for college students!
- The floor: Ok, let’s face it, a bazillion college students have trampled all over that floor. And it’s cold in the morning. Adding an area rug is not only a smart decision but will add an instant pop of color.
- Photos: Your child is potentially miles and miles away from family and friends. Adding some framed photos or a photo collage is a great way to chase those lonely feelings away. Pictures from home also make great care package items mom and dad! Some string and cute clothespins make a great photo display over the bed or desk like this DIY Geometric Photo Display.
- Message boards: Encourage your student to stay organized with message boards in their room or on the outside of their door. Why settle for a boring bulletin board when they can make one like this one from The College Juice. Make it a project you do together before they leave for even more fun.
- Mirror, mirror on the wall: Many dorm rooms do not have a mirror. You can buy a hanging mirror and place it on the inside of the dorm room door, the armoire or closet. But don’t just buy a boring mirror. Make it special by adding washi tape to the frame, paint it or place decals on the edges of the mirror.
- Add a touch of the natural: Try succulent terrariums or small hanging plants to bring the outside in. If plants aren't allowed, try floral garlands or poms placed in a painted mason jar or vase.
Enter Our #CattasticGiveaway on Instagram 0
Let's celebrate summer with our first ever Instagram Giveaway! Hooray for summer! Hooray for cats! Hooray for free stuff!
If you are a cat person, we invite you to follow us on Instagram where today, July 25, through this Friday, July 29th, you can enter to win one of our floral Cat Trio Wall Sticker Kits! Win any size! This prize will be awarded to 3 lucky people! This great giveaway is strictly on Instagram so check us out at @mywonderfulwalls
It's easy and quick to enter! Good luck in our #cattasticgiveaway!
Three winners will be randomly chosen after 7/29 and announced on Instagram as well as by direct message. Winners will have 48 hours to claim their prize! Open to residents of the U.S. who are 18 and up only.