An Aire-Head’s Guide to Last Minute Halloween Costumes

October 31st, 2011 by Amber

Everyone here at NICE Creative and Life to the Max seemed to procrastinate over creating a Halloween costume this year.

But after being forced to wear the Cone of Shame following a minor medical procedure, I inspired the staff to use the cone to create some last-minute Halloween costumes.

With just a few basic pieces, you can turn the cone into your very own tutu. Here’s Kim doing her very best Black Swan imitation.

Or you can use it to make a bonnet. Terry is such a cute baby. Kitchee-coo!

You can also use the cone as a barber’s cape and recreate a scene from Sweeney Todd. Kim & Robin team up for some hair-raising fun!

Of course, the cone makes a perfect lamp shade. Here’s Kim doing her best impression of a table lamp. What a shining example of employee loyalty!

The cone is also useful if you want to strike a pose as Queen Nefertiti. Note the flashy golden necklace that Robin wears of Hershey’s chocolate wrappers and her daring snake handling ability.

Do you have any ideas of how to turn your cone of shame into a last-minute costume? Send us your pictures and we’ll post them on our blog! Hope your Halloween is filled with a cone-voluted sense of humor!

Life to the Max Book Now Available on Kindle & Nook

October 11th, 2011 by Robin Reynolds

We have learned a lot about publishing ebooks over the past few months and now despite some of the challenges with formatting a book like ours, you will now find Life to the Max: Maxims for a Great Life by a Dog named Max in both Amazon Kindle and Barnes & Noble Nook formats.

In this initial offering, we made the decision to make the text resizable, which means a lot of the beautiful graphic treatment that exists in our hardcover version had to be reduced. That is why we are offering the ebook versions at the very low price of just $2.99. We would love to hear what your experiences are, so please send us your comments. Is the advantage of being able to make the type any size you like more important than seeing the book as it was originally designed?

As you know, this is a field that is rapidly changing, so there are always opportunities to grow and improve. Let us know if you would prefer a fixed page layout where you would not be able to adjust the type size or format, but the design looks the same as the hardcover. Happy downloading!

Life to the Max: Christmas in July Sale!

July 1st, 2011 by Robin Reynolds

We’ve gone barking mad in Max’s store and lowered our prices 50% or more! Now through July 31 during our Christmas in July Sale, you can get our award-winning Life to the Max gift book, postcards, pet tags, bandanas, and even our all inclusive Gift Pack-all at half off or more. This is your chance to get some serious holiday shopping completed for the pet lovers on your list and save BIG with the lowest prices we’ve ever offered!

(Because our prices are so low, this sale is for domestic U.S. only. No international shipping will be available.)

So start making your list and checking it twice! Then click on over to Max’s store for the best deals for your howl-idays!

Life to the Max: A Rockin’ Mother’s Day Tribute

May 8th, 2011 by Robin Reynolds

Many of you who have been following my blog and Facebook page know that my mom passed in January. Today is Mother’s Day and tomorrow is my birthday and traditionally, this was always a time of great fun and celebration with my mom.

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I keenly feel her absence, but also clearly feel the part of her that she left behind. It began in her rocking chair.

When I was little girl whenever I was sad, scared or hurt, my mom would take me on her rocker and we would rock back and forth, back and forth until my feelings were soothed. Many disappointments and much loneliness subsided after rocking with mom in her rocker. When I ran across a picture of our Airedale, Bernie, fast asleep on my already napping husband, it reminded me of how powerful this simple act was.

Bernie was a very cute, smart, and sweet puppy, but one day, she just seemed to decide she was a lap dog. Even when she became 70 lb., it didn’t deter her. My husband had fallen asleep on the couch when Bernie discovered him; she crawled up, and fell asleep on his chest. When I found them, the image was so funny that I took the following picture.

When my husband woke up suddenly and realized Bernie was on top of him, he said, “No wonder I was having a dream that I was suffocating!” Hmm…70 lb. of pressure on your chest can give you ideas!

We never quite understood where this lap dog behavior came from until the day I shared the photo with my mom. She looked a little sheepish. “Well, that might have come from me,” she said. “Remember that time you left her with me for the weekend when she was a puppy? I took her on my lap and we’d sit in the rocker and we would just rock and rock for hours.”

Kids, dogs, and grandchildren all took a ride on my mom’s magical rocker and no doubt they felt the same love and reassurance that I had as a child. The legacy continued when I became a mom and my son and I would share hours of stories, soothing conversations, and quiet reflection in our own rocker.

Though today I can’t physically be with my mom, I feel her presence in my life still. Now I see her sitting in her rocker, holding the 70 lb. Bernie on her lap (70 lbs. doesn’t feel very heavy in heaven) and rocking back and forth, back and forth. Happy Mother’s Day, Mom and to all moms who rock our worlds in so many ways!

Life to the Max Giveaway Celebrates Max’s Birthday

February 14th, 2011 by Robin Reynolds

When we rescued Max from the Humane Society, the paperwork said he was born in February, but it did not indicate a specific day. As each day went by and we learned what a loving, special guy he was, it seemed only appropriate to designate Valentine’s Day as his “official” birthday.

Today we are celebrating his birthday with a giveaway of our book in conjunction with Modern Dog Magazine. There are 10 chances to win a copy of our book so be sure to check out their website to enter the drawing: http://bit.ly/eI1Bwh

Today we hope you’re celebrating someone you love to the MAX!

Christmas Morning Not a Creature Was Stirring Except…

December 29th, 2010 by Robin Reynolds

On Christmas morning this year, we had a teenager home from college and my 93-year-old mother staying with us. So besides my husband and me, the only creatures who were stirring were our two Aire-kids, Amber & Krissy. Amber knew from the moment we hung the empty stockings over the fireplace weeks before which sock was hers and she knew that soon it would be filled with all kinds of delectable treats.

Amber, the Airedale Terrier, waiting for her Christmas stocking

She let us know frequently that her patience was wearing thin.

Krissy, our Airedale rescue, tries to get her presents early

Krissy knew that before “Santa” arrived, Mom stashed the stuff in her closet and she paced outside of it, pressing her nose against the mirrored door, whining and complaining.

Barricading the Christmas stockings from Airedale intruders

Once the stockings were filled, my husband I had to barricade the fireplace to keep the kids from tearing into the stockings too soon.  This was met with a fair amount of indignant disbelief!

Just as the clock was inching toward noon, the still-groggy freshman and slow-moving senior finally emerged from their slumber, Amber and Krissy knew the festivities were about to begin.  But then they sat down to have breakfast!

Our Airedale Krissy is tempted by squishy Chrstmas decorations

After an interminable amount of time, the moment arrived and the stockings were presented. Amber couldn’t wait to see what was inside…

Our dog buries her nose in her Christmas stocking

Krissy wanted to see too!

Our Airedale gets a bone from her Christmas stocking and other dog is interested

But she finally settled down to blissfully enjoy her own bounty.

Our Airedale rescue tkaes a bite of her present

Then it was off to play with some of their new toys!

Our Airedales are off to play with their new toys

From watching our dogs, I am reminded that it is the simplest pleasures that often inspire the greatest joys. I wish for all of you in 2011, the simple pleasure of good health, good laughs, and good friends and family. Enjoy each moment and remember to live “Life to the MAX!” Happy New Year!

Life to the Max Featured in More Great Reviews & Giveaways

December 15th, 2010 by Robin Reynolds

Our book, Life to the Max: Maxims for a Great Life by a Dog named Max, continues to find new readers through a network of bloggers who are praising our book.  This month alone we have been featured on four different blogs.  On ABCD Diaries, Christin Banda gave “Max an A+” and thinks it would be perfect for kids 6+.  She is also hosting a giveaway of our book, so be sure to visit her blog to enter and also to see some of the other great items she’s reviewed.

Life to the Max was also featured on two blogs written by Cristine Struble.  Be sure to visit More 4 Mom’s Buck and also the Examiner.com Chicago to see her thoughtful review of our book.

Finally, Katherine Bartlett who writes for Our Whiskey Lullaby also is hosting a giveaway of our book which she found “sp sweet and special” that she decided to keep it for herself.

See the individual blogs for giveaway rules and follow our blog for more great connections to more interesting sites.

Hope you are enjoying your holidays!