Well, today was our big Dia de los Reyes (Kings Day). We had a small (very small) handful of presents leftover, since we haven't exercised much self-control in the present-opening arena. The funnest part of the day, anyhow, was probably hiding little slips of paper inside the Rosca, and then finding them. I've never actually had a Rosca before, but I knew it was supposed to be a big circular sweet bread (I saw one at Walmart, go figure). Ours was an orange monkey bread Rosca. Really, you're supposed to hide a little Baby Jesus figurine in the bread for one lucky person to find. (or money? okay, the point of this is not for me to educate anyone about the traditions of Dia de los Reyes, because obviously I'm taking stabs in the dark.) Anyway, we didn't hide a figurine. Instead we wrote out lists of our favorite memories of 2012 and resolutions for 2013, wrapped them in tin foil, and hid those in the bread. It was fun to pull out each other's and read them. New family tradition? Maybe. I think the game could only be enhanced by little kiddos clamoring to pick the right slice of the Rosca.
Also, we've been working on a couple of home-improvement projects. One of my Christmas presents for Chad was a new area rug! Only instead of forking over $100 for a big one, I decided to buy some supplies so we could paint one ourselves (people do that now!).
I looked around a lot on different blogs and found that plenty of people were painting cool prints and designs on flat-woven rugs (see here, http://tatertotsandjello.com/2012/05/how-to-paint-a-rug-seven-tips-to-a-perfectly-painted-rug.html for some examples), but the one I wanted was a $40 rug from IKEA, and IKEA doesn't ship items and they're not in our area. So for some reason I thought a drop-cloth would make a great alternative. The problem we have run into is that it soaks up paint like crazy (hello...probably because that is what it was designed for). But a couple of coats later, it is looking better.
My pointers on rug painting:
1. Paint is expensive. If you buy a drop-cloth (around $15), a rug pad (also around $15), and paint ($11 per small can, and we used 3), and other supplies like brushes and painter's tape, you might be spending just as much as you would have to buy a rug. (But still, maybe not. Some large rugs are upwards of $100.) But on the flip-side, you can pick your own design and colors, which might be worth it to you.
2. Get a rug pad, to keep your rug from slipping.
3. A drop-cloth is good because it is cheap, and readily accessible online or at hardware stores. However, it soaks up paint, so be prepared to paint multiple coats. All things accounted for, I probably would have preferred that plain flat-woven rug from IKEA, but that's hard to say since I've never tried painting one.
3. Use painter's tape, just like others recommended. It'll save you from ugly or time-consuming mistakes.
4. Choose a design you love, and then figure out how to transfer it to the rug. We did a google image search for the letter S until we found the one we liked best. We printed it in a word document with a grid overlay, and then we drew the same grid onto the drop cloth and used it as a guide to sketch out our S.
I'm excited to see how it turns out. Happy Kings Day! You should give someone a hug to celebrate.