Thursday, October 31, 2013

UPC Codes for Mold Market Molds


Mold Market has notified us that they will be displaying UPC codes on their molds starting January 2014. This is great news for anyone selling their molds in a retail store setting. Mold Market offers over 250 plus quality plastic molds for soap making and chocolates.

If you own a retail store or online company and have an interest in Mold Market's reseller program, please complete the following application.

A complete catalog of molds available from Mold Market can be viewed here.

Sunday, October 27, 2013

Melt and Pour Soap Making: Severed Fingers

Severed finger soaps

These are the severed finger cookies I made with the grand kids tonight. They had a blast helping shape the fingers and applying the almond fingernails. We embellished the fingers with a dusting of cocoa and red food gel.
I couldn't help thinking what cool soaps these would make. Guess what I'll be doing next week?

Friday, October 04, 2013

Powdered Color Fun for Hair!

 
 
If you thought powdered colorants were just for soaps, think again! It was crazy hair day at my grandkids' school for homecoming week. And guess who was elected (by the grand kids) to give them something crazy looking; ME! Their mommy (my daughter) just wanted to plop a Halloween wig on their head, but they would have nothing to do with that.

"NeeNee (that would be me) will do something fun for us." And so, these pictures give you my idea of fun with a few added touches by the kids.
 
Pictured above is my granddaughter, Olivia. She was thrilled with the Monster High look. She picked out the colors and I applied with a small paintbrush. Thankfully, she won't be showering at my house tonight. It's going to take more than one shampoo to get those colors out, but she wanted to go for the WOW factor. To my daughter I say, "Your mom colored, you can shampoo!"
 






The boys opted to make their own crazy hats to wear, but we colored their hair just in case they removed the hats. Carson's crazy hair hat is made from a nylon stuffed with tissue paper and sprayed pink (colored hair spray). I glued green paper shred to the cap with a hot glue gun. Ribbon bows were tied at the end of the pigtails.




My little buddy, Fischer was the most excited about this school event. He just started kindergarten this year, so all of this is new for him and he loves being included in the fun. He decided on a pair of stripped tights from one of NeeNee's old costumes. And yes, those are socks hanging from the cap; his idea.

A word of advice when using powdered pigments to color hair.... IT CAN BE MESSY! Hair chalk can also be used, but I didn't have time to make it. It is best done outside with a towel wrapped around the neck and shoulders. The dry powder does come out of clothing in the wash, so if a small amount colors a shirt or collar, don't get too stressed.

I used GoPlanetEarth's Neon Bright Colors for this hair project. Colors can be purchased here. With Halloween just around the corner, consider a creative hair project using powdered pigments.

Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Yes, All is Well... Thank You for Asking

Just wanted to give a shout out that I'm still alive and kicking. I appreciate the emails asking if everything is OK; and those wondering why there have been no recent blog posts.

Life! That's what is happening. 2013 has been a year of reflection, a year that reminds me there is more to my life than running a business. When my dear friend, Renae, was diagnosed with breast cancer in early August, it was a wake-up call. She had a double mastectomy and is currently undergoing chemo and radiation therapy. She is 43 years old, a mom, wife and fighting for her life. Posting on my business blog and Facebook held little importance as I spent time giving, helping, supporting, and being there for my friend.

This summer I lost several family members. That, too, has given pause to running a 24/7 business. No, I'm not closing the doors; but I am slowing down with an awareness that life is short. I have three grand kids and I want to spend as much time with them as I can. I don't want their memories to be, "NeeNee never had time for us, she was always working and typing on her computer."

I have an 82-year old mom who also needs me. My daddy passed away five years ago and my mom is alone. She won't always be here and she will always come before my business. That's not to say GoPlanetEarth is not here to service your soaping needs, but when push comes to shove, my mommy will win every time.

Recent travel has also taken up a big chunk of my time. I have had limited time to devote to tutorials and special soaping projects. But, since these are offered for free, I find it hard to apologize. I recently returned from a California wine trip with my husband, daughter and son-in-law. That trip was followed by another California trip my husband earned through work. We also traveled to Florida and Northern Michigan; and, hosted a family reunion.

My husband and I purchased lakefront property this summer with plans to build our retirement home within the next five years. I finished my first children's book which I hope to have published next year. I am currently working on a devotional book that will include some of my daddy's writings as well. He was a very gifted writer.

Then there is the Bunco Bites recipe book I am compiling as a community fundraiser. I belong to a Bunco group of sixteen women. We meet monthly and host a sold-out Bunco event every November to raise money for our community Angel Tree program. Proceeds from the recipe book will be donated to those in need.

And finally, I am working on obtaining UPC codes for all our Mold Market molds. This will allow us to sell these molds in retail store settings. It's a huge undertaking. I'm not sure everyone knows, but I own both GoPlanetEarth.com and MoldMarket.com. Maintaining two web sites, designing new molds, marketing and keeping up with social media is more than a full time job, even with the incredible help of my staff.

So....when you wonder what I've been doing, why I haven't been posting, why there have been no newsletters...there you have it! Quite honestly, I've been enjoying life, just like most of you are doing. I'm still here for you, my friends;, but enjoying family, close friends, good health, and living is tops on my bucket list. When I die, none of you (my customers) will be at my funeral. Unless you need a mold or product you can't find elsewhere (heh-heh!); I won't be remembered. Poignant, but very true; so please don't take offense.

At this time in my life, I am creating lasting memories with my daughter, husband, grand kids, sister, mother; and every other family member and friend I hold dear. Yes, all is well; and I sincerely thank you for asking.

Friday, August 09, 2013

Purchase Your 'Bracelets for Breast Cancer'



I haven't made many blog posts in the last month. A close friend was diagnosed with breast cancer. She has underwent a double mastectomy and the pathology report was not positive. Chemo and radiation treatments will begin to control cancer cells that have migrated to the underarm lymph nodes.


My friend is a young, otherwise healthy 42 year old mom. She has a daughter who is eight. I can't begin to imagine the fear and anger she is feeling (and not necessarily expressing), or the courage she will need to fight this disease. However, one thing I know for certain. My friend is a fighter. Her last text message to me read, "I'm not going anywhere!"

The bracelet shown was made by my assistant, Jenni. They are made from recycled aluminum pop can tops threaded with your choice of satin ribbon.


GoPlanetEarth is selling these bracelets as part of a fundraiser for Breast Cancer Awareness. We are donating 40% of the profits to breast cancer research in the name of my friend (who wishes to remain anonymous).

Bracelets measures 6, 6.5, 7 and 7.5 inches in length.

Cost per bracelet:

$8.25 (6" and 6.5") includes first class USPS shipping



$9.00 (7" and 7.5") includes first class USPS shipping




Select from the following ribbon colors:

Dark pink, light pink, yellow, blue, green, red and purple

Jenni also makes neck chokers and headbands using the pop can tops. Please email her for pricing and reference this post.


Tuesday, July 09, 2013

My Food Blog


For the last few years, I have tried to eat healthier and maintain my weight loss (24 pounds); but my struggle with high cholesterol is ongoing. At my last follow-up appointment with my MD, we set some exercise goals. I won't try and fool you, it's not going to be easy to start an exercise routine, but I'm going to give it my best shot.

Some of you may remember my published story in the Chicken Soup book about my weight loss.
Say Hello to a Better Body

Since that publication, I have been working to maintain my weight loss and live healthier. My Blimpy Girl web site offers great recipes for those wishing to modify their eating habits. It's not a diet plan, it's an eating lifestyle. A lifestyle where moderation rules.

Here are three of my favorite recipes from the Blimpy Girl web site:








 

 
 
 
Hope you take a moment to visit the Blimpy Girl website. There are plenty of great recipes for you to try.

Sunday, July 07, 2013

The Dr. Seuss Birthday Party







Yes, that would be me, the owner of GoPlanetEarth getting ready to great guests at my grandson's birthday party. He turned five and all he could talk about was his Cat in the Hat party. It was a huge success and all twelve guests had a great time collecting tickets to cash in at the candy bar and prize tables.

The birthday boy, Fischer, is pictured (center) along with his brother and sister.

There were truffula trees, a photo station, candy bar, games, coloring, lunch and most important, gifts! Fischer was the perfect host greeting his guests as they arrived to Seussville.




(And, yes, I know I spelled Seussville wrong on the entry sign.) Thankfully, none of the kids noticed and most can't read yet.


Seuss Lunch Station




The lunch station (pictured right) was set up on the wood floor. It included PBJ sandwiches from Costco, GoGo Squeez applesauce, Gogurt, cupcakes and Dr. Seuss coloring pages.



The Birthday Boy

 

















 


The coloring pages entertained the guests while waiting for everyone to arrive.
 
Photo Station
Games included a blindfold/seek duck pond, spin the Seuss wheel and a ring toss. Each game gave the kids an opportunity to win tickets to cash in at the candy bar and prize table.
 
 
 
 
The party was originally planned outdoors but the weather was somewhat "iffy"; I opted for plan B, an indoor celebration.
 
The thank you cards were handed out at the end of the party. Each guest received a photo card from the photo shoot.
 
 



So many things to buy with my tickets.
 

Candy Bar



Cashing in tickets was the best part. It was so hard to decide on what to pick. The kids drew numbers to determine the line order. Of course, the birthday boy went first.







 

Melt & Pour Soap Making: Splatter Loaf


Melt and Pour Soap Making: Splatter Loaf

Check out Sophie Soap Chick's splatter soap slices. I'm quoting Sophie, "So many different color options and I had a blast!"

 
This is a really easy soap to do with kids on a rainy day or at a children's birthday party. I personally think it is less mess than finger painting. Roll out a big sheet of Kraft paper onto a table and let the kids do their magic. 
 

Make a soap loaf using Mold Market's square loaf mold and white melt and pour soap base. Fill the loaf mold to the very top (about 2- 2 1/2 pounds of soap base. Once the soap is set up, remove from mold and slice with our miter box and wavy soap cutter.

Set the soap slices to the side while you prepare the different colors of soap for splattering. Use a straw or plastic spoon, flick the colors onto the soap slices. Flip the soap over and do the same to the other side.
You can also spread the colors onto the sides of the soap slices to add more color.

Clear soap base was used for all of the splatter colors. Here is a list of the colorants Sophie used:
  • Neon Blue
  • Neon Green
  • Neon Orange
  • Neon Red
You will find all of the above colors here.
 

Monday, June 17, 2013

Melt & Pour Soap Making: Mickey and Minnie Soaps




Over and over again, I am amazed at the many ways Mold Market's cupcake base and large bath bomb are being used to create fun designs. Our Sophie Soap Chick was on a soaping extravaganza the last couple of weeks. This is the first post of the many things I will be sharing from Sophie's soaping adventures.
 
I always give Sophie a shout out of ideas I would like her to try. When I suggested something Disney themed, she wasted no time. This project is easy enough for even the novice soap maker.
 
 
 
Ingredients used:
Here are Sophie's instructions on how to make and assemble the Mickey and Minnie soaps:

  1. Melt clear soap base, add black colorant and poured it into the large bath bomb mold.
  2. Melt clear soap base, add tomato red colorant and pour into the cupcake base.
  3. While these set up, pour the extra red color into the flexible jelly roll pan. Don't pour too much because you want it thin enough to be able to carve and bend it to shape the bow. Hand-carve the bow with the carving tool making almost a figure eight without cutting the center (use the white soap base to make an extra circle for the center of the bow).
  4. Pour black soap into the jelly roll pan. Once it is almost fully set, remove and hand carve the ears with the carving tool. It took a few tries to make them look like mouse ears. Once I got four to match I fixed up the edges and pushed in the center to curve to make it look more like a mouse ear.
  5. Melt white soap base and pour into the jelly roll mold for the buttons. I used the bottom of a small Chapstick to outline the perfect circle and then cut it out with the carving tool. Once everything was cut I began assembling the mice. I attached the base and head first with clear soap.
  6. The ears and buttons were next which completed Mickey. I secured the white circle to the bow with melted soap and attached it to Minnie. I off-centered the bow to give it some character. 
The rubbing alcohol spray helps with air bubbles than occur when pouring soap into the molds. These soaps will fit GoPlanet's clear cupcake boxes. Scenting the soap base is optional.

Sunday, June 16, 2013

Don't Let 'Sameness' Validate You


 “I don’t want that one, NeeNee, it’s different.” Those were the words spoken by my seven year old granddaughter, Olivia, as I handed her a handful of fresh cherries.

“What’s wrong with it”, I asked?

“It doesn’t look like the rest of the cherries; it’s not the same color.” Without hesitation, she exchanged the cherry for one that resembled all the others. “There”, she said, “now they all look alike”.

It was an innocent, yet thought provoking, statement that triggered a red flag. Might she be swayed to take the road less traveled in life because it is wasn’t a popular choice? I wondered if she viewed sameness as a validation of acceptance within her peer group.

I tend to be OCD, so maybe I overplayed the whole cherry conversation; but one thing is certain, following the masses to “fit in” has never been an option for me. I like the idea of traveling the road less traveled. There is excitement in bushwhacking my own path in life and living with a fearless desire to see what lies ahead. Of course, blazing new trails doesn’t come without opposition or obstacles.

There are things to consider before taking the road less traveled.

1.       The road less traveled is narrow and often lonely. You won’t earn popularity votes.

2.       You will encounter plenty of people who didn’t follow their dreams, or gave up; I call them dead soldiers. Avoid their discouragement and stay focused on the road you’ve taken.

3.       Don’t expect everyone to understand your choices.

4.       Failure is not the end. Those on the popular track are waiting for some miracle to land in their lap. Guess what? Miracles don’t happen without hard work.

5.       Set your own challenges. Become the CEO of your own life and set goals different from others.

6.       Success isn’t measured by time; it’s measured by experiences and opportunities that allow you to know what works best for you.

7.       Understand that trailblazers disrupt nature; they overturn rocks, cut down trees and move dirt. If they can’t remove the obstacle they build bridges over or around it. Sheer determination cuts through barriers and obstacles.  

8.       Taking the road less traveled is for leaders; they point the way, take the risks, and have a vision for turning their dreams into reality.

9.       Know your passion and gifts. You need to know with absolute certainty that the path you’re blazing is the right one for you.

10.   Trailblazers create a path where none existed before.
 

As an online entrepreneur and manufacturer for over 15 years, I’ve learned valuable lessons from the school of hard knocks, both personally and professionally. One thing is certain; an individual deemed an odd-colored cherry, regardless of age, has two choices. They can let sameness validate them or embrace their uniqueness and take the road less traveled.  I want my granddaughter to understand she doesn’t have to be like all the other cherries in the (peer) pack; or, stifled by other people’s expectations and limiting thoughts.

When the time comes for Olivia to venture out on her own, NeeNee will be there with a shovel, ax, hammer and backhoe. She can count on me to mentor, saw trees, chop thorny bushes and build bridges as she blazes her trail in life. And may she find a bowl of odd-colored cherries at the end of her trail; a reminder she took the road less taken.

 

Friday, June 07, 2013

8 New Mold Designs from Mold Market

Eight new soap mold designs from Mold Market will arrive mid-June. I can't wait to start working with these molds. I'll keep you posted on arrival date.

video

Thursday, May 30, 2013

Made in the USA Cupcake Soap

 
 
Our Soap Chick, Sophie, has been at it again. This "Made in the USA" cupcake soap was inspired by nothing other than the American flag.
 
 
Sophie used Mold Market's cupcake base and Mold Market's large bath bomb mold. The stars were hand-cut from red and blue soap. You can also use varying sizes of star cookie cutters.


Score the cupcake base with fork prongs to help seat the cupcake top. Clear, melted soap secures the two pieces together as well as the stars.


Sophie used white soap base in this project so the red and blue colors don't really POP. I suggest using clear soap and red colorant for the cupcake base and pour the top in white soap along with clear soap (add ultramarine blue to the clear soap).

Using clear soap would give the same red and blue colors in the American flag.





Other ideas for the Made in the USA soap:

  • Pour the top in alternating blue and white colors only make the stripes thinner
  • Use clear soap for the first layer of the top and embed a star, sprinkle with silver glitter. Pour remainder of top in stripes.
  • Make the cupcake base blue and the stripes white and red


Monday, May 06, 2013

Melt & Pour Soap Making: Embellishing Your Soaps



Mold Market's soap molds take soap making to the next level. If you don't believe me, take a look at what Maria at Kokolele Soap has done with Mold Market's ice cream cone mold. Maria told me she was so delighted to discover this mold could me used to make a 3-D soap.


Mold #239 (Soft Serve Ice Cream) has a flat back. However, when you join the halves, you get this wonderful 3-dimensional soap which you can embellish to your heart's content.

Maria's soap artistry is amazing.

These are the new border trims from Mold Market available in June 2013. Use them to embellish your soaps. There are six border strips on each mold.

 
Here is a former blog post on how to make the different colored layers for the ice cream soap.
 
 

Here is another creative soap by Maria using Mold Market molds. I have purchased a number of soaps from Maria's Etsy shop and I must say, they are perfection with lovely packaging and labels.


The above soap is made with Mold Market's cupcake base and a small bath bomb mold. The two pieces are connected with clear soap base and embellished with a rickrack soap border.

Wednesday, May 01, 2013

How To: Mother's Day Picture Frames



I've been on a Mother's Day craft marathon this past week with my grandkids. We've made paper Mache vases, sun catchers and our final project is ice cream stick picture frames.


These refrigerator picture frames are easy, inexpensive and colorful. Supplies include:
  • Craft Popsicle sticks
  • Craft glue
  • Glitter
  • Paint
  • Plastic buttons
  • Scrap ribbon
  • Business card magnets
  • Printer and camera


Form a square frame with the pop sticks. I attached two parallel sticks at the top and bottom, and one stick between the two layers. A diagonal stick was used on the back side to keep the picture in place.

Spray paint or brush on tempera paint with a brush. I used spray paint. Allow the sticks to dry between each coat of paint.


Decide how button arrangement and where you want to place glitter. Layering the buttons by size will give added depth. Allow the picture frame to set up overnight.


When the embellishments are dry, print and trim photos to side into the sides of the frame. The diagonal pop stick will help keep the picture in place.


The last step is to adhere the business card magnets to the back of the frame. I used on full magnet and trimmed a second to fit. Hot glue worked best for securing to the wooden sticks. Even though the magnets had an adhesive backing, they didn't seem to stick well. The hot glue worked great.

Glue the business card magnet to the back side of the frame.