Creating Success Around the World- Interview and Blog Hop

The worldwide blog hop tour, that introduces you to creative people from all corners of the globe.

Every Wednesday our hosts on each continent will introduce you to someone new whose creativity is inspiring! Come take this worldwide tour with us! 
You can visit each host below and read about a featured creative person on each continent! All interviews are posted simultaneously around the world, resulting in one big crafting party.  And then, add your blog to the Blog Hop party below.  You could be featured in the next Around the World Interview!  Fame. Notoriety.  Pure Awesomeness!  It’s all in the touch of a keyboard button… 


Our Guest this week is from Toronto, Canada

About a month ago, I received an email from Monica in Toronto, Canada. She told me that she would love to have her website featured on the Sitcom as she is relatively new to blogging and she would love to get some exposure. Of course, I was intrigued, as her website is unique in its style and she seems to have a great business savvy that mixes well with her family lifestyle. I mentioned it to my buddy Tom Selleck and his mustache and he paused his game of Guitar Hero long enough to nod in agreement and then went back to his energetic, over-the-top riff of the chorus to “Stairway to Heaven” on his plastic guitar.

 It was then that she mentioned that she just might have a photo or two of our buddy Tom Selleck and his mustache taken in the early 80’s when he was filming Three Men and a Baby. He shut Guitar Hero down in mid-note.

Tom wanted to see it. No really, he needed to see it. You see, he was concerned that a photo taken in the 80’s might be a bit embarrassing. Who knows what he might have been wearing then? He was famous for his Hawaiian shirts, but during the filming of Three Men and a Baby, they were in the wilds of Toronto, Canada. And he seems to remember that it might have been cold. And wasn’t the eighties the era of big hair and huge shoulder pads? What if his mustache wasn’t showing in its best form? You know every mustache has a bad hair day now and then.

But I decided to make him wait until she gets here today. Because, like any other Sitcom, half the fun is the unexpected. Why let him see it ahead of time when we can get a great reaction right here in front of the Sitcom readers? I even have the five second delay in place just in case Tom’s reaction has a few colorful words thrown in that we don’t want my young Sitcom readers to hear. Because I’m thoughtful like that.

So, when Monica got here, she was immediately surrounded by Tom and his bunch of rowdy friends. Seems he is in the middle of sponsoring some of his friends in the “Movember” charity challenge. You know, the one where the guys grow a mustache in the month of November to raise awareness for prostate cancer and mens health? Since Tom is an expert in the field, his buddies William Shatner, Brad Pitt and Justin Bieber asked him to coach them on their mustache growth.

Tom, you will just have to wait. Now take your friends into the Green Room and play nicely until Monica and I are ready for you.

Suzy: So, tell me a little about yourself, your family, your other hobbies…
Monica: I’m hoping to coast on the fact that I’m Canadian…for the intrigue. I live near Toronto, Ontario and I’m a Mom to Emily, Kelly, Joseph, Bridget and Adam. I survived architecture school, retaining enough information to secure a couple building permits and build a few small projects including our own house addition that we have been blessed to fill with all of our kids. My favorite part of the addition is the tall chateau-style roof, housing a finished loft where I stash craft supplies, Christmas presents (don’t tell the kids) and the Catholic products we have created as part of our home business, Arma Dei.

Suzy: When and why did you begin blogging and where would you like your blogging to go?
Monica:  Just when I finally learned how to create a regular website and get up and running, I discovered how user-friendly blogging can be and how relatively painless it can be to present the crafts and creative projects I’m working on. Equipping Catholic Families quickly became my preferred site to not only promote our Catholic family business, but to show off our crazy family projects and let others benefit from the time and energy I have put into creative projects.

Monica:  I also just realized…I think I’m blogging for the buttons! I love designing blog buttons, especially for link-ups, enticing people to share their creativity and promote each other’s blogs. I hope people will discover my blog buttons and use them on their own sites! Any link-backs to my site would be appreciated! A button, anyone?!?
Suzy: Can you tell us a few things that most folks don’t know about you?
Monica: We removed a wood burning stove from our house to use the stone corner platform for a stage, regularly hosting open mike, mainly for our own family. I am the only member of my family who doesn’t leap for the spotlight to perform a song or imitation. My husband’s late Uncle Hugh created the Kool-Aid Walking Pitcher guy who crashed through walls with refreshment.


Monica: We often shovel the snow in our backyard before our driveway, in the winter, to create a luge run! It winds around a backyard hockey rink and inevitably hosts a Superhero, Olympic or Knight birthday party for our son, Joe.

Monica:  I was given a hand-knit white angora hat by the closest living relative of Pope John Paul II. She knit the hat for me with the angora that was left after knitting socks for the Holy Father! Incidentally, JP2 received a copy of my book during a private visit with this cousin (who lived in our little town) during the 2002 World Youth Day in Toronto. His message to us was to continue our Catholic family apostolate. No pressure!
Monica: I used to have a crush on Kiefer Sutherland (as Jack Bauer) but I kept that to myself… after I found out that my husband’s cousin was best friends with Kiefer’s sister, growing up in Toronto. It’s ok, my husband knows.

Suzy: Tell us a bit about Kelly’s comics!
Monica: I am in awe of a girl named Kelly. She’s my 12 year old daughter and she has been drawing her signature comics for 2 years now! Just look at those expressions and poses…and the storylines! She began with a drawn scrapbook of her Grandma’s life with 9 siblings, capturing expressions and likenesses of family members that we still find inspiring. When her brother Adam was born, she began drawing comic strips of what our little baby did when we weren’t looking!…fixing the lawn mower, teaching crafts to seniors, parachuting…lots of adventures!
Monica:  She has drawn Adam in the Oval Office with Obama, guest appearing on the Ellen show and hanging out in NYC. She also illustrated a special Faith Journal that we published at Arma Dei called Hand in hand with Jesus and her “Up and Adam” comics are currently being published in Faith & Family Magazine. Check out the Kelly Comics facebook page or her “First Adam-ated Feature Film”

Suzy: I understand that you have a surprise photo to show Tom. Can you tell us about it?
Monica: Although I hounded my brother to look for this photo from the 1980’s when he worked at a Toronto hotel, (I think during the shoot of Three Men and a Baby), I somehow {sheepishly} found this authentic photograph in a box of treasures I have kept since high school! I know, SHOCKING! =) Don’t worry…the text is just added to the jpeg…I haven’t scarred the original photo, or Tom’s mustache. I probably should return the original photo to my brother, but I don’t think he will mind me sending you a good scan…for you, your Green Room archives or Tom’s scrapbook.

Suzy: The blogging community is full of wonderful folks. Can you tell me what blogs inspire you?

Monica: Blogs that inspire me have frequent, quality posts with excellent photography, intriguing crafts and DIY projects that make me think “why didn’t I think of that!?”, lots of subscribers, well-populated linkies and yes, cool blog buttons!

Suzy: Can you tell us a little about what you are promoting right now?
Monica: I’m promoting our Catholic books, CathleticsTM Craft Kits, and CathleticsTM playing cards (which can be used as flashcards as well as regular cards). Our teaching tools and gifts are designed to help Catholics teach and celebrate the entire Catholic Liturgical Calendar along each child’s Journey of Faith, through fun activities that kids like to do anyway! offers free activities and crafts (including free printables) for family-building and often Faith-forming activities, routines, {awesome birthday party programs} and family traditions.
Monica:  This is our newly updated Color Me Catholic Cathletics Craft KitTM that teaches the NEW english text of the Mass. A lot of people don’t realize that the text of the Mass is changing for all english-speaking Catholics around the world this Advent, and our kit will help teach it to kids. There are our two books: the one that started it all, and the one that Kelly illustrated with me. And there are some of our other popular Catholic products including quizzing cards and Catholic scrapbooking.

Suzy: Monica, thank you so much for introducing us to your website and your awesome childrens crafts, books and learning materials. Please take a few moments to check out Monica’s website, Equipping Catholic Families. Even if you aren’t Catholic, I’m betting you will find lots of great ideas there for educational family fun.

So, Monica, let’s go show Tom your photo. I’m sure he’s ready for a break about now. Seems he didn’t have a problem coaching a decent mustache out of Bill and Brad. In fact, Brad’s is so impressive that he has waxed it into a fancy curly-que on each side of his lip. While Bill’s is a bit less full, his is pure white and gives him the enviable look of a walrus. And it totally confused his trekkie fans who are currently wandering around the building, trying to avoid Klingon force fields while they search for their captain.

As for little Justin Bieber, well Tom has just about given up. He tried vitamins, protein shakes, facial massages, and even a bit of fertilizer to no avail. Justin can’t seem to sprout even a bit of fuzz. In fact, between you and me, I think I might have more going on below my nose than he does. Just saying.

Anyway, Tom has resorted to pulling out a sharpie. So before he gets all involved, we’ll show him the photo. I’m sure he will like it. His mustache was totally having a big hair day. Ha!

Want a chance to be featured on the Sitcom?  Want to meet lots of fabulous international creative folks?  Then link up your site to the International Blog Hop!

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