December 20, 2014

Happy Saturday!

Time to get off the grid and enjoy the weekend, so I'll leave you with a great, easy recipe.

I got this banana chocolate chip muffin recipe through a friend, and let me tell you, they are amazing, and so easy too!

P.S. I use butter instead of oil, enjoy! :)

December 11, 2014

Calligraphy Class

I've always adored calligraphy, and have recently decided I want to use my creative flair and dig my calligraphy skills out of the trenches.

I did a ton of research on many modern calligraphy classes, and this class came up, over and over I signed myself up. Happy birthday to me!

I'm so excited to let my creative juice flow again. I will post updates and examples once the class starts.

Taken borrow from the I Still Love Calligraphy website

What about you, have you taken an art, calligraphy, design class that you loved?

December 5, 2014

Wet Brush Review

May I introduce you to the best hairbrush ever?

Little Bear has the most beautiful long, curly hair -- but it's a nightmare to brush. I mean, I wash her hair no more than once a week because she has a complete meltdown every. single. time. Throughout my Cyber Monday shopping travels, I randomly came across this brush, and it has been a blessing (for both of us!)

Meet our new friend, The Wet Brush.

It's not just great for Little Bear, I love it too! I'm still in that lovely postpartum hair loss phase, where my bathroom has tumbleweeds rolling around, and I could make wiglets out of it all. Anyway, this brush is so gentle, I don't lose as much hair when I brush now.

It's great for wet or dry hair, but just don't blow dry your hair and use it! One of the reviews said she melted the poor brush.

They have lots of fun colors! Check them all out here.

All opinions are genuine, and my own. I was not paid for this review.

November 15, 2014

I'm Back Baby!

Okay, let's be honest....being pregnant and then actually having the baby completely takes over your life, doesn't it?

I'm happy to share we had another precious baby girl, and that I'm finally out of the postpartum fog! It only took me 3 months....

So, I'm back! Ready to write, post, and share as many helpful tips + stories as I can!

March 24, 2014

Frugal Find: Scarf Organization

The first time my coworker mentioned Christmas Tree Shops and how great it was, I told him I thought it was a shop for holiday items, I really did! Well, a few weeks later I got a flyer from him and he told me I needed to go. Now I go all the time! You can't stop me from finding a great deal at that place.

My fabulously frugal find this time around was a scarf holder. I have tried to hang and fold and organize my scarves in so many ways, I was tired of it.

So, for just $4.99, this lovely find entered the picture (don't mind my messy closet!)....

Within minutes I hung my scarves up and finally felt like I had accomplished the scarf organization issue. Who doesn't love organizing?

Have you found any good deals lately?

March 21, 2014

Consignment Sale Shopping Tips

Since having Little Bear, consignment sales are my absolute favorite! I find the best deals, and I love not spending much money! After my very first sale, B (my husband) asked me how much I really saved. I knew I saved money, I just wasn't sure how much, so being the nerd that I am, I created a lovely spreadsheet with what I paid vs. what these items would've cost us if I had paid full price.

Full price: $380.00  |  What I paid: $143.00

What's not to love about a good deal?!?

So, now that I regularly go to consignment sales (which are typically held each fall and spring), I thought I would share a few tips. Initially I had no idea what I was doing, and felt a bit unprepared at my first sale, to say the least.

So, here are my tips for shopping a consignment sale:

What to wear:
  • Sneakers: Comfort, comfort, comfort. Those pretty little sandals you just bought? Don't even think about wearing them.
  • Cross body purse: Nothing heavy, less is best! Hands free is your goal.
  • Layers: If it's a fall sale and you're waiting outside at 6 AM, you may be cold! Once you're inside, it gets busy, and warm! Wear layers so you don't accidentally pass out and all your goodies get yanked from your bags (okay, I'm totally joking here, all those Mamas will run and help you, but please, just dress appropriately?!)
 What to bring:
  • Big bags: I suggest a few big bags, I love bringing a couple of my Thirty-One bags (some big sales have Ikea bags available for you to use, but be sure to come prepared if they don't!)
  • Laundry basket: At my first sale women had these and would push them around on the floor, my second sale I clued in and brought one, and it was so handy for those heavy items!
  • A friend: It's always more fun going to a sale with a friend! 
  • Payment: Some sales may not take your American Express card, others take a personal check, be sure to find out in advance.
  • Snack: A small granola bar or juice box is highly recommended. You'll need that burst of energy!

Other tips:
  • Top items: Think about what you want or need, make a list! Is there a specific toy, stroller, clothes, or shoe size you need for your child/children? Then go to that area of the sale first.
  • Facebook: Like the sale site on Facebook to get involved, and see photos of previous sales, it also will give you an idea of what to expect at their sale. Which leads me to my next tip...
  • Avoid entrance fees: Volunteer! Some sales charge a fee for early shopping (typically on a Friday night), or a 1/2 price entry fee on a regular day. If you want to avoid the fee, you can volunteer for the sale, and then shop the pre-sale, which grants you access to everything, minus the crowds! At my last sale, they had Facebook friends passes for the first 50 guests, so I signed up, and got B and I in for free (it would've cost us $40 just to get in!) If there are still fees and you want a better discount, consider the last day which is usually 1/2 price day on all items.
  • Kids: I don't recommend bringing your child, unless you have no other option. Some sales don't allow children either. Personally, I can't imagine trying to work through crowds with a stroller or have Little Bear running off on me. Now, if you have an older child who can and are willing to help? Bring them! 

Your first sale may not be your favorite, but in my experience, you will learn from experience, and each sale will be better than the last. I must say, I've been hooked since my first sale!

Ready to start shopping? Find a sale in your area here.

Do you have any tips for shopping at consignment sales? What's the best item you ever bought at a sale?

March 20, 2014

Blog Love: Young House Love

If you're not following the wonderful blog Young House Love, you should be! John & Sherry are so inspiring and love to do design on a dime!

Their recent post, From The Curb To The Office was amazing. B and I have always enjoyed finding random Craigslist deals and redoing them, sometimes it's hard to see the potential, but the desk they redid was amazing, see below.

I think it's time I go find a junky piece of furniture for free and give it some overhaul love! When I do, there will definitely be a blog post about it!

March 19, 2014

Mason Jars + Summer love

Although Little Bear has adored playing in the snow this year, in my opinion winter has overstayed its welcome, and I am longing for spring + summer!

I picked up this lovely juice container at BB&B the other day in anticipation of spending a lot of time outdoors when the warmth finally arrives. I will be quite pregnant (#2 is due in August!) so quenching our thirst is a must! There's something about drinking out of mason jars that I love, and now I have a cute container to go along with it!

For Little Bear's 1st birthday party last year I bought these cute straws and we used mason jars as cups for everyone. It's a cute, simple way to dress up a party!

Some more inspiration.....

And last, but not least....

March 18, 2014

Tarte Review & Must Haves!

Let's be honest, do you know how many chemicals are in your makeup? I know I didn't.

It's scary thought, we put this stuff on our faces almost daily, but do we know the effects it can have on our bodies? A couple of years ago I finally woke up, and decided it was time to get rid of the the makeup I was using with all the "junk" in it, and so began my search for what I called "better" makeup. I tried many different brands, but I was tired of having to reapply halfway through the day. When I put on my makeup for the day, I want to be DONE! Don't you agree?

Let's get down to the details...
  • Foundation: I love that it goes on smooth, has a matte finish, and I never have to reapply!
  • Eye Cream: I cannot believe how WELL this works. The reviews are amazing on it, and for good reason, it works like a charm. My dark circles have faded more than I expected.
  • Marajuca Oil: Don't let the oil scare you off! There's nothing oily about this stuff. The oil has a smoothing finish, I love to put it on at night before bed. It doesn't clog your pores, and feels light. 
  • Blush: Who doesn't love a pretty blush? This stuff stays on a lot longer than you expect, and comes in plenty of awesome colors. My go-to color is Dollface.

I like that Tarte doesn't include the top main bad chemicals we're warned about, their products are...

I'm dying to try the Tarte cheek stain....I just can't find the right color!

What about you? Have you made a switch to better products, with less chemicals? Any Tarte items you prefer?

March 17, 2014

Happy St. Patty's Day!

Happy St. Patrick's Day!

I have fond memories of my Mom making the day green-themed. Little Bear isn't old enough for that yet, but I have plenty of good plans up my sleeve for the future! To list just a few....

All images from Google

On a completely different note, did your Mom ever make these for you as a kid? We used to love it when our Mom would. Such a cute, simple idea!

Here's the recipe from OhNuts. I think I may have to make these this summer!

Image from OhNuts

March 16, 2014

Battling a cold when pregnant

It was inevitable that I'd catch this lovely cold.

Little Bear picked up a bug in the church nursery on Sunday, and by midweek she was feverish and downright miserable. That first night we were up almost the entire night together, when you're pregnant, and you don't get much sleep? Expect to get sick....

Thank goodness for this tea - it's the only thing that has helped my throat!

What are your "I have a cold + and I'm pregnant" remedies?

March 15, 2014

Etsy Shop: ChunksBabyJunk

Since having a baby, I feel like my creative (yet tired) juices are flowing much more than they used to! I have these, "I need to design that..." moments. As a beginner (and I mean beginner) sewer, these moments have turned into, "it would be great if someone ELSE would make a ..."

When Little Bear decided to start throwing her sippy cup off her highchair, out of her stroller, and when we were out for dinner onto restaurant floors, I knew the madness had to end. I had that moment: I wish someone would design a stop the cup!

Well, someone else had a creative moment, and after a small Google and Pinterest search, I found this wonderful woman named Heidi, over on Etsy at ChunksBabyJunk. There were so many cute designs, it was hard to decide which one I wanted to buy! I ended up choosing this one, and could not wait for it to arrive. I think my favorite part was the first time we used it when Little Bear threw the cup, realized there was no loud bang, and began searching for where the cup went!

Go check out Heidi's ChunksBabyJunk shop! I think this is a great gift for any new Mom.