Soliciting – the new DIY project to make these dinnertime annoyances a thing of the past.

Soliciting is one thing that I really cannot stand. Inevitably I am in the middle of making dinner where there isn’t really a stopping point, they ring the doorbell, rather than knocking which now means I have to corral animals and deal with their crazy barking and excitement and try to squeeze in front of them to find out what the intrusion is.

Then I can’t concentrate on what they are saying because my dog is scratching me and head-butting me so they can meet whoever this intruder is.While dinner is burning I kindly tell the person “I understand that having to go door-to-door is a tough job and I too have done it once, but I am being courteous and I would appreciate if they would also be courteous and pay attention to the not ONE but TWO No Soliciting signs, one on the front door the other directly over the doorbell.” I then tell them “if we needed a product or service, we would research whichever item would best meet our needs and would never sign up for something in a door-to-door arrangement. We at the BellaMandarin house believe in educated decisions.

After my spiel then the next guarantee is that they will say “I’m not soliciting, I’m just…” and there is always an excuse that is actually always still by definition soliciting. i.e. “I’m just hoping to complete this survey regarding X with you.”

Or my personal favorite said by a high school football player that looked like crap coming to my door, the only official thing about him was the crumpled folder he was carrying around and he said “I’m not a vacuum cleaner salesman or anything I’m just asking for money for (I can’t even remember what I was so shocked) so it’s not soliciting.” He was a senior. Scares me that naivety will be making its way into the real world shortly .

With this several things have become apparent to me. 1. We need to remind our kids if they are going out to sell something for school that they should look presentable. Throw on a school T-shirt, brush your hair, just look like you care. and the second and much more importantly people need some serious education regarding the definition of soliciting.


  1. Ask for or try to obtain (something) from someone.

  2. Ask (someone) for something

I’m not saying if you’re not invited, don’t touch that door. If you live in my neighborhood and want to stop by, need some sugar, whatever. That might be solicitation by definition but it’s what neighbors do. I will help anyone in need of assistance that knocks on the door. I’m not cold-hearted. But the kids I know are selling all the same crap, I will only be buying from the kids I know. I think its great to see them meet their goals even if I don’t really want the product. If you’re here to drop off a big check, knock and ring the bell as much as you’d like. Oh and girl scout cookies? C’mon by, Lemonades and Thin Mints are my weakness.

So with all of that ranted… I am making a new much more noticeable and funny no soliciting sign. If people don’t read this one and still ring the doorbell with a silly excuse, we may have to invest in a dunce hat. Since the other ones are being ignored even though they are extremely obvious, I have a whole new plan.


I’ve seen these floating around Pinterest and I will have different sayings but you get the idea of what I’m after. I found this great old wood sign at Hobby Lobby for $15 which I will recover with modpodge and scrapbook paper and then I get to use my new silhouette to cut some vinyl for the wording!! Hoping to get busy on this tomorrow so I can have a tutorial up since I’m long overdue for for one!

I pray that you are having a blessed weekend.


sign off


2013 – Back to Blogging With New Purpose

Happy 2013 friends!! Can’t believe that another new year has begun and although I got sick on New Years Eve and literally just emerged from my sick hole, this year has already taught me quite a few things.

There has absolutely been a reason for my hiatus and It wasn’t the holidays or any of that, it has been a struggle of purpose for me. Obedience to God and learning to truly trust that he has a plan for me. Everyday I wake up is a blessing. What happens when my feet hit the floor has already been planned. If you know me I HATE waiting for things. I am not patient. I want to know the ending. It’s why when I start a new book, I just have to finish it quickly. Patience is not my thing.

I have been on a journey of self discovery to learn to love the waiting and treasure the everyday. A very close friend of mine recently posted this quote on Facebook and I literally cried when I read it because it called me out on the mediocrity I’d been giving God.

“Our trust that God is in control while we’re in our time of waiting must be acted upon and lived out, otherwise it is just a sentimental cop-out.”

It’s true, so true. How many times have I been thankful when things are awesome just to turn around and be silent when things are hard? And my definition of “hard” isn’t even close to what hard is. So 2013 is the year for me totally changing and being thankful in my time of waiting, being faithful that each step is God’s plan. Its in his hands and all I need to do is listen. Wow. SO much simpler than worrying all the time. Its easy to tell someone else that you believe God is in control but if you aren’t actually living and believing that’s true then there it is – the sentimental cop-out.

I have some very close friends that really need prayer and they have taught me A LOT about the importance of faith and understanding that God has a reason. You may not like the process of his plan but there is one and that is a hard thing to swallow because many times it is not fair and you will not understand in the least. In this case, I certainly don’t understand and I have been praying that God will continue to do his work and I am continuing to be thankful for friends that are absolute fighters.

You have heard me mention it before, but the husband of a couple I know very well and am close with was diagnosed in June with cancer. At the age of 28. Right before his 29th Birthday. They have only been married a few years and have received blow after blow in their family. So after a head on battle with cancer, with chemo treatments, with total lifestyle changes for them both, they come to December. Expecting to find out that the Chemo had gotten rid of all the cancer and ready to move on and be able to live happily and more carefree like they should be doing at their age. Instead, several days before Christmas they find out that there is now a brain tumor on the brain stem. My first instinct was God how can you let this happen, this isn’t fair and I can’t understand how you could allow this to happen – their first reaction – grow closer to God, trust in God and prepare for another battle. Talk about courage. When they have every reason to let something just flatten their faith they are instead digging in and holding onto God’s promises. Its amazing. That’s not to say that they don’t have days without struggle or confusion or anger I am sure but amazing faith is what they show.

It hurts my heart thinking of all that they have been through together but they are the definition of what it means to be strong in a relationship. They are a picture perfect definition of what marriage is all about and what God intends for marriage. His sister and husband and their whole family are the definition of a strong family that all stands firmly on God’s word and promises. They have been through so much and yet their whole family only grows closer with each battle that they fight. They are all the true definition of faith and love, no matter what comes their way. I don’t know how they can do it but I can tell you it is such a privilege to have each of them in my life as such amazing examples.

So BellaMandarin will still be all about my DIY projects and fun things like that. But this is God’s work, this is his plan and I pray that my struggles with faith and life might also encourage someone else to be more vocal. No more sentimental cop-outs.

“Faith – When you come to the edge of all the light you have known and are about to step out into the darkness, faith is knowing one of two things will happen… there will be something to stand on or God will teach you to fly.” 

sign off