10.31.2009

You can't win em all

I was really exited when I found this post about DIY roman shades. I love the look of fabric shades but i don't love the price tag.

Well it started off really well but I'm making this post more about the things that went wrong.

When it came to cutting the cords, perfect, easy. Cutting the fabric, eh could have been better but that was totally user error.

The hardest part was making sure the shades were even and aligned. My shade bowed out to the side because I didn't keep them all in a straight line. My suggestion would be to work next to a wall that you can keep the mini blinds flush with so you ensure the blinds are even.

Also, you should probably avoid doing this with a solid color light fabric. The glue on the fabric and the blinds themselves was very noticeable.

Maybe it just takes some practice, but for now, I think I will be window coverless. Maybe in a few weeks I will give it another try!

10.30.2009

Frugal Find Friday!

I just had to share these little guys I picked up at Habitat for $1 FOR BOTH!


(6am + iPhone = Blurry)
They just came out of a cycle in the dishwasher (dust, dirt, dead bugs) so now I am just pondering what to do with them! Any suggestions?

10.29.2009

From Shutter to Shut Up!

**Update I am now linked up over at A Soft Place to Land's DIY Day! Come check out everyones DIY goodness!

Does anyone else’s adrenaline just rush through them when they go thrift shopping? There is something about laying your eyes on the one thing you have been looking for, or finding something that just makes your heart go pitter pat.

I shed a tear when I found my $1 shutter, well not an actual tear but you get it… right?

Here she is before:


This picture really doesn’t do her sadness justice. She was very industrial, cob webby, stained and scratched.

But with a coat of primer, a few coats of white spray paint, and some decorative bling, she has done a complete 180. I distressed her a tad and painted the wooden decorative accent ($2 with coupon from Michaels) with a coat of primer, then black spray then white spray, to give her a nice gray-ish tone. I went ahead and scratched that up a bit too!

Here she is after:



(she is not really hung this crooked, I was just so excited, I hung her up without taking any pictures first. So this is my attempt of reaching up to take a shot)



As you can see, she is the new mail holder in our entry way for a total of $3!
I am in lust. I woke up this morning to leave to work and I actually stood there and admired her for a second. Isn’t she lovely?

**I am linked up over at The Shabby Chic Cottage for Transformation Thursday. Stop by and check out the other great makeovers!

10.28.2009

Gift Guide 2009: Reebok NFL Tee’s for Women 50% off


Even though my team has pretty much done nothing but disappoint this season, maybe some of you are interested in getting some NFL gear.

Reebok has ladies NFL t-shirts on sale for 50% off through 11/4 with code NFL50, plus free shipping :)

Great gift for the football loving lady in your life for $11 and some change!

Take a look at inventory here

Thanks My Frugal Adventures!

** unconditional love to my redskins :)

58 days til Christmas!

I mean seriously, does it get any better than Christmas time? I'm talking from The Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade when Santa comes down the street, to taking the tree down after New Years. Wrapping presents, watching the Grinch, decorating the tree, listening to Mariah Carey’s Christmas CD (don’t judge me) all make my little heart so happy! Not to mention I spend more time in the kitchen during that 1 month span then I do all of the other 11 months combined (times 2). Squeal! I can’t hardly wait!

Now, the point. Since my job has forced us to take Furlough Days this year, and has pretty much banned the term overtime, my Christmas budget is a strict one this year. You see, in the past, I would budget for gifts. That’s it. No tree, no ingredients for orange pecan cookies (my mouth literally watered when I typed that, I will be sure to post that recipe this winter), no d├ęcor, and no “well this is only 3 dollars and would be really cute” impulse buys. Let’s just say, my menu for January consists of pretty much only peanut butter sandwiches and ramen noodles.

No more I say! Since I have started couponing earlier this year, and now that I have learned A LOT more about doing it yourself, I think I am in a good spot come December.

I have already done some shopping, but I haven’t bought anything on a whim. The gifts I have gotten thus far have all been purchased using coupons or gift cards (that I earned through Swagbucks or Expo TV). I have spent a total of about $14 out of pocket for 4 gifts.
Here 2 of 4 things I have gotten: Mom- You already know this gift but if you don’t want to see it stop reading here.

1- Bushnell 5-day weather forecaster-


I actually have one of these myself and I love it! It sits on our entry table (you will see it in my entry way make over reveal sometime soon). The back lighting is really neat. It changes colors to indicate temperatures so you can see what it’s like outside just by glancing instead of walking over to read it (Green=50-60 degrees, Orange=70-80 degrees, etc.). Anyway, if you want to check out details click here.
The price for this bad boy= $99.95.

How I did it: Back in August-ish Walmart had this on clearance for $50.00 (there was new packaging coming out, silly marketers). Coincidently, Bushnell had a mail-in-rebate offer happening at the same time. Here’s the kicker, the rebate was “Buy a 5 or 7 day forecaster and get a $50 mail in rebate.”

So I paid $50+tax out of pocket at Wal-Mart, BUT I got the $50 back about 3 weeks ago in the mail.
(This is actually how I got the one we use at our house too)
FINAL COST: about $1.15 in tax!

2- Land’s End Slippers-


Cost: $25.50
Since I have been using Swagbucks I have accumulated about $50 in Amazon e-gift cards. I ordered these off of Amazon, and since Swagbucks it totally free, I have also gotten this gift for, that’s right, FREE.

I don’t want to share the others because those people might read this blog, and I don’t want to ruin all my hard work and spoil it!

Good luck gift hunting, and as always, if I come across any great gift deals I will be sure to fill you in!

10.27.2009

Tumbled Marble Coasters


This is a throw back to an old homemade gift I made before I started my blog. I had such a blast last week at DIY Day over at A Soft Place to Land, so I rummaged something up so I wouldn't be left out :) (I'm linked up so go check out all of the AMAZING DIY projects)

I don't have any process pictures but here is the scoop.

1. Buy a box of tumbled marble tiles from Lowe's (in the flooring section) for under $5 for 9 tiles.
2. Clean them off really good with a wet rag; let dry completely
3. Pick your stamp that you want to use
4. Use a high quality PERMANENT/WATERPROOF ink pad
5. Stamp the tile; let dry (some people put them in a warm oven to help set, but either way works)
6. Put cork/felt feet on the bottom.
7. When ink is dry, spray with clear sealant.

Ta-dah, that's it! These are easily personalized, and make a great little gift!
** This is the sealant I use. I think I got it at Michael's if I recall correctly.

Back to reality...

After an exciting/exhausting weekend, I am back to my daily routine (against my own will).

I won't bore you too much with my personal life but here is a quick run down of the weekend activites!

Pilot and Co-Pilot ready for take off at 6am on Saturday

After arriving at 10am and unloading a 26ft moving truck into an 1.100 sq ft home (yes, it was as awful as that sounds) there was a little work to be done... Carrie and I put up the shower rods. The ones that require templates and power tools.


but there was time for play...

Stella's first trip to the beach! Needless to say, she loved it...



I cant wait for summer! :)

10.23.2009

Heading to the beach...

I will be without the internet and my laptop for 3 days! I honestly don't know how I will cope with it. Maybe pack a brown paper bag?

I hopefully will have lots to share when I get back from the big move to beach!
Don't forget about :)

A Must Read...

As I was blog stalking today I stumbled across an exquisite blog called My Sweet Savannah. And since my BF is from Savannah and that was our first real trip away together, I had to read through.

One post had me LOL-ing, literally. I am not positive of her age but I am 25 and these are definitely thoughts I have had. I mean, the fitted sheet...gets you every time!

Here are a few tidbits of the post titled "random thoughts of people our age"

5} How the hell are you supposed to fold a fitted sheet?

6} I think part of a best friend’s job should be to immediately clear your computer history if you die.

7} The only time I look forward to a red light is when I want to text

9} I wonder if cops ever get pissed off at the fact that everyone they drive behind obeys the speed limit. (every time I see a cop and everyone hits the breaks, this thought crosses my mind)

14} MapQuest really needs to start their directions on #5. Pretty sure I know how to get out of my neighborhood and honestly they just confuse me.

23} It should probably be called Unplanned Parenthood. (this one has always boggled the mind)

Check out the rest of her thoughts here, and make sure you stick around and look at some of the amazing features she has up.
Enjoy!

Thank you, Thank you, and Thank you!


Today is my blogs 2 week anniversary! I have to say, I never thought I would love it as much as I do. I have interacted with some amazing people and look forward to continuing to meet everyone!

I have 16 followers (yay! you guys rock!) and I put up a site counter on 10/21 at 2:30 in the afternoon-ish, and I am up over 1000 views!

It feels really good to know that people enjoy my reading my blog as much as I enjoy writing it.

I can't thank you enough!! :) :) :)



**someecards.com is where I got these cards. Some of them are kind of, well, let's call them abrasive, but some are tasteful and they are all very funny!

Dollar Tree Makeover-The Result

Ok, so remember this post here with my sad collection of misfit items?(I'm looking forward to Christmas so much I can't help but reference my FAVORITE Christmas movie!)
Here is a reminder...


Well here they are all new and pretty. Not sure if this is how they will remain in my home, but take a peek...

My speckly brown birdy, nice and covered with a fresh coat of white :). He is sitting on top of those brand new $1 hard back books! I couldnt believe it. I know the sign at the store says "Everything's a Dollar" but I actually had to ask the cashier! This is on my mantel, will probably bulk up the books as I find some more.


Here is the welcome sign, now coordinating with my teal, brown, white and cream (with a splash of orange) entry way decor.

**This has nothing to do with the Dollar Tree makeover, but that little shabby birdhouse in the background I found at Salvation Army for a buck! So cute!

The blue plate and silver stand is also in the back entry way. Might put a design on the plate in the future but for right now it is just the right punch of color and simplicity.

("N" is not my last initial, it's the BF's, but "J", which is both of ours first initial, didn't stand up. haha!)

The little rug was a bust. It was far too small for the space, but I'm sure it will come in handy at some point in time. Right now it is under our shoe rack to catch the dirt so it isn't all over the floor. Time will tell it's fate!

Have any Dollar Store makeovers you want to share?

10.22.2009

Lifes a Beach, and We Need Your Help!

This weekend is going to be a very exciting one. The BF's beach house is done (finally)! It has been a long waiting process, but now that it is complete everyone is thrilled. We are moving his mom down there on Saturday (can we say... jealous?). To be able to wake up every morning and smell the salty air... maybe when I retire, and at the rate its going thats a good 60 years from now
:(.

The pity party is over! Here are some pictures of the house, some before it was finished, some after it was complete!

Her she is!! :)


Guest Room:


The rear :)


Master:


Kitchen:

yummy- Uba Tuba granite and stainless steel

I LOVE the doors in this place and the gleaming hardwoods!



Now, the part where you come in. We need a name for this little beauty.
Here is some back ground/ideas to get your thoughts brewing:

Georgia (whether it be the state or the UGA Bulldogs)
Obviously, something beachy
The house is a minty/seafoamy green
Play on words

So if you have any fun ideas please leave a comment!! I will let you know the final verdict when it is decided. Happy thinking :)

Halloween Round Up

I have not done ANYTHING for Halloween this year. No cooking, no decor, no costume. I am having a hard enough time trying to decorate our house with everyday stuff, doing decor for Halloween just was not in the cards this time around. But I just wanted to share with you a few things that I have come across that I hope to get to do next year.

There will be links to these extremely talented women's sites below each picture!


Love the 31... check out the rest of the goodies by Chris over at Just a Girl

Next up...

Adorable! Check out Thrify Decor Chick for more great inspiration from Sarah!

Style on the Cheap:

Check out the how-to of this Pottery Barn copy cat over at Living with Lindsay

For the sweet tooth..

take a look for more halloween ideas over at Be Different...Act Normal

For the kiddies (but I love them too)

Lots of amzaing inspirations and recipes over here at Our Best Bites

These last two I did last year and they were huge hits! They are a process and take some time, but well worth it!

Festive take on Pigs in a Blanket (would be great to serve for that UGA/FL game on Halloween!)

Get the recipe here

Lastly- my pride and joy of last halloween (these arent mine pictures but EXACTLY what they looked like)

*flickr*
Check out that recipe here

Trick or treat!!

Target+Glade= :) & $

Ok, let me first say that I know that this post is going to scare some of you non-couponers, and lead you to believe I live my entire life in excess like this (which I don’t, scouts honor). And for all you couponers, I hope you’re cashing in on this deal!!

Every so often, a deal comes along on a product that I love, that will actually MAKE me money. In the world of couponing this is called a “money-maker” (we are simple people). The product this time happens to be Glade Scented Oil Candles. You know, the ones that are chubby little triangles that melt into a pretty glass dish and then disappear and go out when they are done. Well, I must say, I have A LOT at our house and I got A LOT more the last 2 days. They make your house smell wonderful, and you don’t have to have half burned, black charred jars of candles around. If you are a visual learner...here you are.




Ok, so enough about the actual product- Here is the deal:

At Target from now until the middle of December-ish, if you buy any 5 participating Glade Holiday Scented (yummy my favorite) items (priced on special for $2.50 each), you get a $5 Target gift card. I am sure some of you are saying to yourselves, “Self, why would I spend $12.50 to get a $5 gift card? I think I will just keep my $12.50 and be on my way”

Silly you. Remember the $400 billion dollars out there in coupons that no one cashes in on? Some of those coupons are for Glade products.

So here is how I did it- (remember for every 5 products you get a $5 GC)
5- Glade Scented Oil Holders (the tin or glass holder where you put the little wax miracle)
5- Scented Oil Refills (4 pack)
I had coupons for $1.50 off each Holder, and a coupon for “Buy a holder, Get a refill free”.

So my total was $5 out of my own pocket, and I got $10 back in Target Gift Cards.

I have done this 3 times now (again, excessive I know) and twice, the cashier has messed up, and either given me too much off of my coupons, or has rung a coupon more than once. One time I didn’t realize it because I will filling out a comment card as to how nice the cashier was and how appreciative I was for his help with my coupons (they will probably think I was so pleased with him because my total was only $2.70 after tax because of his mis-ringing). And the second time, at a different Target, the girl rang one up twice. I went to CS and told them and they thanked me and sent me on my way with my total of $3.22 standing.

So at this point I have spent $12.xx of my own money, and have $30 in Target Gift Cards.

But wait… theres more!

SC Johnson has a rebate going on, buy any 3 products of participating brands and get a $5 rebate (they send you a check to cash like real money). Guess what? Glade is one of the brands! You are allowed to do this 3 times per household, totaling $15.

So the final tally-
Spent- $12.xx
Rebate of -$15 cash
Gift cards totaling- $30 to Target.
I have earned $3 cash, $30 in Gift Cards, a little gift for my brother (we aren’t giving gifts to each other this year, but he L-O-V-E-S the apple cinnamon ones, so I’ll share the wealth…or at least the candles :))

I would post a picture but to be honest, it is a little embarrassing to have 30 Glade products from 2 days at Target!

10.21.2009

So you need a job?


I thank my lucky stars that I get to wake up and come to a job that I like every day (even if the commute is 1 hour each way...eek I know). With unemployment at its highest since I have been alive, I know there are a lot of people who are not as fortunate as I am.

My best friend Shelly has an interview tomorrow (good luck!!!). I told her the key to a successful interview was to prepare yourself. She then asked me to help her prep for it by sending her some sample interview questions.

The bottom line is, an interviewer wants to hear what you can do for the company. They do not care that you like to paint in your spare time or that you have a goldfish named Bubba. They want to know how your experiences and knowledge can help make their company better and more profitable. Make every answer circle back to how your abilities fit the job description.

The link that I found outlines 7 typical interview questions. I agree with them 100%because my last 2 interviews followed these guidelines almost exactly.


So here are the questions.

PRACTICE your answers so they are smooth and natural. Don't wing it and then get flustered and fumble over your words or forget important details.

I know finding work can be challenging, so don't let those rare opporunites slip away because you didn't take the time to prepare yourself.

WORDLESS WEDNESDAY

I know this is supposed to be "wordless" but I just want to clarify. Only the series of posts titled WORDLESS WEDNESDAY will actually be wordless. If you met me for 5 mintues you know that I wouldn't be able to be quiet for an ENTIRE day!
Hope you enjoy!



I knew I wouldn't even be able to be quiet for this post alone! I just have to explain Stella's crazy toe (Shelly's super sensitive name for it). She was born like that and it doesn't feel like there is even a bone in there. We think it gives her character, and we got her for a discount price because she has a defect. Sad, but true. We love her nontheless!

Dollar Tree Makeover (tease)

I decided to stop by the Dollar Tree last night to see if there were any gems I could get my hands on.

Outcome: I spent $7 and got these 7 things...

Before:

and this shot does not do this ugly little birdy justice...


Brown crackle paint anyone? But you just can't help to love his big fat belly!

I started the facelift for some of these items last night, so hopefully I'll be able to wrap them up tonight!
Stay tuned :)

10.20.2009

It's The Little Things...

I just LOVE that I can go out and find an item for $3 and love it as much as I love my new dining room table, (which they actually happen to be on for their photo shoot!)

I just have to share them with you guys...

I mean, come on... :)

Another...

Look at them in all their glory!

Now, for the purpose of my siamese fishies...


YES! Their home will be on our new/old entry table/sewing table as our key holder!

I just cant even stand how adorable this is.

**The entry way is coming along, be on the look out for the before and after in the next couple weeks!

Free $15 Gift Code to KodakGallery.com


This offer won't be around long, so hurry!
Go to HERE and enter your email address on the right side of the screen. Fill out the little form and make sure you keep the check in the box to opt in for recieveing your code via email. They will email you a code good for $15!

Great way to get a photobook (great holiday gift for grandparents for those of you with little kids), christmas cards, or just regular prints made!

Thanks For The Mommas!

10.19.2009

Gift Guide 2009- Personlizing Pyrex

Not only is this gift easy on the bank account, it is just so darn adorable. I have given this as a wedding gift for my friends Kasey and Bo, a Valentine’s Day gift for Jason's mom, and one for my Dad to give his friend Jessica as a thank you for making him Tater Tot Casserole (the man has a thing for the tot).
Everyone loved them!

Oh and of course, I have my own.

It's a really simple thing that, in my opinion, makes a big impact. Not only is it handmade by you, it is personalized for the receiver. And that, my friends, is the tag team of great gift giving.




Squeal!


Here is all you need:

-A Pyrex baking dish (You can get these anywhere, I get mine from Wal-Mart with the red lid)
-etching cream
-A vinyl stencil with your name (Erin is wonderful to work with! Make sure to check out all the other vinyl they have... TONS of great ideas floatin around there!)
-Small Paintbrush

Instructions:
1. Put your vinyl stencil on the bottom of your dish
2. Using your paintbrush, fill it in with a thick coat of etching cream
3. Wait 30 minutes
4. Wash it off
5. Peel the vinyl off

That's it. Easy peasy. This is a permanent application and will not come off in the oven or dishwasher.

**This post is not featured over at A Soft Place to Land's DIY Day, and Transformation Thursday at The Shabby Chic Cottage! Take a look at all the wonderful projects over there!

If you like these, but don't want to make them yourself, I will happily take orders!
WARNING- it is cheaper to do it yourself! :)

10.18.2009

Gift Guide 2009- Free e.l.f make-up kit!


If you don't know what e.l.f (eyes lips face) make-up is check out their "about us" here.

Receive a FREE e.l.f. 27-piece mini makeup kit with ANY purchase (a lot of their products are only $1)
Free kit includes:
-9 eyeshadow shades
-1 cream eyeshadow shade
-1 blush
-1 bronzer
-10 lip gloss shades
-1 brow powder
-1 eye liner pencil
-1 dual ended eyeshadow applicator and brush
-1 face brush
-1 lip brush

MAKE SURE to ENTER CODE : LOYAL at checkout to get the mini kit free.

Great gift for a niece, girlfriend, or yourself (everyone buys themselves something for the holidays right?)

After tax and shipping your total will come to about $7. Not bad...not bad at all.

Gift Guide 2009- The Proposal DVD


If you haven't started your holiday shopping yet, maybe this will be a good time to start :). I will be making posts about how to make this holiday season a little more wallet friendly.

This deal is for:
The Proposal DVD-
The DVD is priced at an introductory price of $16.72 at Wal-Mart (Wal-Mart prices vary by region, but should be close)
Click here and print a $5 off coupon.
(There is also a $10 off Blu-Ray, but I am not sure on the price of that)
Total: $11.72!

Good luck!

If you guys have any items on your lists this year that you were hoping to get a better deal on, leave it in my comments and if I come across anything I will be sure to post it!

10.17.2009

DIY: Magazine Monogram Art

I have always thought of myself as a fairly creative person, but when I see what some people come up with, it makes me think twice.

Two of those people are John and Sherry over at YoungHouseLove . They are CRAZY creative and if you dont take a look at their whole house renovation, you are seriously missing out!

Back to the point,( but really I could go on about their website for-ev-er). They inspiried this little project that has a happy home on our mantel.


I followed their lead and found "J" in a magazine, clipped it out, took it to Kinkos and asked them to enlarge it. 45 minutes and $2.46 later, I leave empty handed and a little disappointed.
On the way back to work, I decided I was going to have my magazine monogram whether or not the very inexperienced employees of Kinkos were gonna help.

So after spending 1/2 of my lunch hour in Microsoft Word, Wah-la. I heart it so much. I want to have them all over the house! I'm such a softy for a big capital letter!

note: Amanda Scherer- if you want this as a wedding gift, let me know! :)