Guest Room Update

Hope everyone is having a great weeekend! I'm stuck inside today since we got a few inches of snow and a full day of freezing rain/sleet. I know that doesn't sound like much, but the folks here in NC panic at the threat of snow. I had to run to Wal-Mart after work yesterday, and it was worse then Christmas Eve!

So, I thought I would share a little preview of the guest room. We had plans to go to Ikea today (3 hr drive to Charlotte), and that obviously didn't happen, so I am kind of at a stand still right now.

These are just a few shots of some of the fabric and textures being used. I can't wait for it to be done!

The picture on the left of the feet are the BF, me and one of Stella's doggie feet, the first time we took her to the beach

I have another little organizational project in the works, but need to make a trip to Lowes, so hopefully tomorrow!

Joining up for the first time over at Remodelaholic!


Healthy Food Chat

Since I don't have sponsors and am not limited to what I can and can not blog about, I am going to divulge into my personal life for a second. December 28th, the BF and I started back at the gym and flipped our diet 180 degrees. (I know, we are super ambitious for starting 3 days before we are "supposed" to)

It has been a month (to the day) and I have already reached my goal weight (lost 12 pounds, which I feel I gained every ounce of from Halloween to Christmas), and the BF has dropped over 20 lbs! Yay for us. Hitting the gym 5-6 days a week, and cutting out basically all bad food for the past 30 days has been tough at moments, but the rewards have been great. I feel better, my energy has sky rocketed, and the mirror is a bit friendlier to me.

Now, I know that going cold turkey off of the foods I love is just a curse to gain all the weight back, so, since I have reached my goal, I am adding "bad" foods back in, but with a twist.

I discovered Hungry-Girl a little while back and I have seen her on numerous TV shows. She basically takes bad food that we all love, ie: onion rings, mashed potatoes, nachos, cupcakes, etc, and makes them over. Not only does she supply unique recipes, but a lot of the things she does are based on actual restaurant meals.

Example: I don't like Frito's but the BF would thoroughly enjoy this one.
BITE IT (the healthy recipe)

1/3 cup low-fat turkey or veggie chili
1 La Tortilla Factory Smart & Delicious Low Carb High Fiber Large Tortilla (or alternative below)
2 tbsp. shredded fat-free cheddar cheese
1/2 package Fritos Original Corn Chips 100 Calorie Pack (or other alternative below!)
Optional: 2 tbsp. diced onion

Serving Size: 1 burrito (entire recipe)
Calories: 218
Fat: 6.5g
Sodium: 774mg
Carbs: 33g
Fiber: 14.5g
Sugars: 3g
Protein: 18g

FIGHT IT: (This is Sonic's little Frito Burrito)

Serving Size: 1 wrap
Calories: 674
Fat: 38.5g
Sodium: 1,416mg
Carbs: 66g
Fiber: 5g
Sugars: 3g
Protein: 21g

There are a TON of the restaurant head to heads on the site, along with just generic items like chicken fingers and monkey bread.

I have tried 2 things off of this website:
Fried Cheese Please!

and the Better off (Banana) Bread,

I have to say, I was pleasantly surprised. I plan on picking up her book 200 Under 200 from the local library (when I can get there after work before it closes, not easy with an hour commute).

So, I was just curious if anyone else has tried any of these recipes or has any healthy swaps for classic comfort food. Please leave a comment, and I am open to all sorts of food!


The Ceiling Fan VS The Chandelier

Alright, here is the dilemma. In the first floor guest room, we currently have a dinky white ceiling fan, and when I say dinky I mean it's blades can not be more then like 18 inches (and that's a stretch.) It doesn't have a globe on it, and it is strutting it's energy efficient bulb like it is going out of style (which we all know it's not). Don't believe me? see photos here

So now that I am giving this room some life, the BF and I have a disagreement. I want to put just a classic simple chandelier to make it feel a little more special (we have 4 bed rooms, each has a fan, and so does our living room. What can I say, we're fan people).
The BF wants a fan, because he says it's the room that gets the warmest in the summer. We don't have a ton of guests, so I feel that I shouldn't have to sacrifice my chandy for a few nights out of the year.

So I got my Google on and found a few pics that gave me something visual to compare.

Ceiling Fan



(Could this room be ANY awesomer?)

Please don't judge the rooms based on their design, (because the Chandy rooms kick butt), but on the lighting element.

Can a girl get a little back up? Or should I let this one slide?



I spent the evening filing my taxes. You all can just imagine my excitement I'm sure.

That's all.

Back to regularly scheduled programming tomorrow.


Great Grandmother's Dresser

For my birthday I inherited this beautiful dresser from my Grandmother, and come to find out, it was once her mothers. It will have its new home in our master after it stops raining or warms up (side bar: why does that always happen? The warm days in winter are always plagued with rain, so all hope of getting outside in the fresh air flies right out the window?)
As of right now, it's sitting in our sun room.

Anyway, I thought I would post the before pics, and while I like the white, the paint job is a little shotty and it needs a few fill ins!

Don't mind my reflection in the handle of this one!

That's all for now... back to the guest room to slave away!



4 days without a post is very unlike me! But don't get too excited, this is just an update that things are progressing right along in the Guest Room and that is where I have been spending my time and energy. I don't really want to post any of the things I have done since I am a fan of seeing a big before and after!

But, I will share that I went through my Pottery Barn Bed and Bath issue last night and boy was it good timing. There is ALOT of gorgeous and inspiring things in there. Just happens to be the style I am shooting for in the GR. Here are a few of my favorites.

First, I noticed quite the trend with mirrors in this catalogue. They're in sets of 3, above headboards in a lot of these shots. LOVE.

Next, a few headboards that made me swoon :)
(pictured in "real life" in the first picture in the post)

I'm having a secret love affair with shabby, teal tables here lately too.
Even though these are all gorg, the blue is by far my favorite!

Same with this one :)

Lastly- lots of adorable lamps!

I hope to be back soon to share some goodies of my own!


Guest Room 1 Preview

If you've visited my blog before you know that I have 2 bedrooms on deck to be decorated. I have to admit... I'm nervous. I have no experience decorating or any REAL education about it. All I have are my two hands, a few bucks and some time.

This will be my first, full room "before and after" and although I can't wait to finish, I'm terrified to get started!

With that said, here is a look at the room in question from all 4 corners. This furniture is my BF's and TOTALLY not my style. But, I will do my best to work with what I have.
** sorry some of the pictures aren't great, when I was facing the window they darkened up on me. Pardon the mess, it was post Christmas chaos in that room, and bedding was coming off to be washed!

Going to be hard to part with the seriously small ceiling fan with an energry efficent bulb showing off all off it's energy saving goodness. Ha! It's funny though right?

I hope to have this room completely done by the end of February, but with the weather being so cold, I'm not positive the furniture will all be completed!


Rite Aid Trip 1/17/10

After a wonderful birthday, it was time to get back to my couponing!
By request, I am going to attempt to show you how to duplicate the deals I get.

To understand these fully, you will have to have some knowledge of the Rite Aid Rebate Progam.There is a HUGE new promotion Rite Aid is offering up called Grab the Gold. Spend $100 on select P&G items and get a $35 Visa Rewards Card; spend $50 and get a $15 card; spend $25 and get a $5 card! This promotion starts on 1/17 and runs through 2/13/10.

Here is my trip to Rite Aid this morning:

1 Crest Pro Health
2 Tampax Pearl
4 Pantene Shampoo/Conditioners
2 Olay Quench Lotions
2 Day Quil
1 Puffs plus with Lotion
1 32 load Tide
2 Olay Regenerist Face Wash

Transaction 1:
Crest Toothpaste 4.1 oz.; Crest ProHealth, Whitening Expressions or Plus Scope Paste, 6.0 oz.; Crest Neat Squeeze or Outlast Paste, 5.8-6.0 oz. or 7.4-8.0 oz. $2.99
Get a $1.25 Single Check Rebate #78
Use the $1/1 coupon from the 12/27 PG
Final Cost $0.99!

Always Pads Always Clean 28 ct., Always Infinity 28-36 ct., Always Jumbo 38-48 ct.) or Tampax Pearl Tampons 36-40 count $6.99
Get a $2 Single Check Rebate #2
Deal Scenario:
Buy 1 Tampax Pearl Tampons 36-40 count
Buy 1 Tampax Pearl Tampons 18-20 count
Use the Buy 1 Tampax 36-60 count and Get 1 Tampax 18-20 count free coupon from the 12/27 PG
Final Cost $4.99 for 2 boxes of Tampax!

Olay Quench Lotion $3.74
Use $2/1 Olay Quench Lotion from the 1/17 PG
Final Cost: $1.74

Vick’s DayQuil or NyQuil, 6 oz. or 12 ct. $3.99
Get a $1 Single Check Rebate #40
Use the $2/1 coupon from the 1/17 PG (there is also a $1.50/1 coupon from the 12/27 PG)
Final Cost $0.99!

Puffs Facial Tissue $1.99
Use the FREE Puffs when you buy 2 Vicks products coupon from the 12/27 PG
Final Cost: FREE

$5/$25 Purchase here
(use zip code 95677)

And I had a $5 gift card from the Gift of Savings program offered over Christmas time

$10.36 out of pocket
Will get back- $4.25 of SCR
1.37 money maker!
**PLUS This transaction counts as $29.73 Towards the Grab the Gold Promo!


Tide Laundry Detergent Liquid 32-40 loads, Powder 31-40 loads $5.99
Use the $1/1 coupon from the 12/27 PG
Final Cost $4.99!

Pantene Shampoo, Conditioner or Stylers 2/$6
Use the $3/2 coupon from the 12/27 PG
OR use the $1/2 coupon from 1/17 PG
Final Cost $1.50 each!

2 Olay Regenerist Daily Regenerating Cleansers 5 oz. for $7.99 each (2nd cleanser will ring up at $3.99 due to B1G1 50% off sale)
Use 2 Olay Regenerist $3/1 coupons from the 1/17 PG
Final Cost $5.98 for 2

Use another $5/$25

Out of Pocket: $15.91
Submit for this $15 Rebate for Olay Regenerist
TOTAL: $.91
**PLUS this counts as $29.97 towards the Grab the Gold Promo



thanks to hip2save for all the deal breakdowns!!


Gonna Party Like Its My Birthday...

Because it is :) The Big 2-6! Hopefully 26 is still considered "Quarter Life" or I'll have to change the name of my blog!

Let's take a look back in history to see what other events share the same date as my birth:

1920: The 18th Amendment to the Constitution, prohibiting the sale of alcoholic beverages, went into effect.

1961 - Mickey Mantle signed a contract which made him the highest paid baseball player in the American League.

1991: Operation Desert Storm was announced by the White House.

2003: The Space Shuttle Columbia takes off for mission STS-107 which would be its final one.

The Year 1984 Recap:

Gas was $1.21 a gallon

The average house hold income was $12,497

Cost of a Loaf of Bread: $0.71

Cost of a First Class Stamp: $0.20

My Redskins got their butt's kicked in the Super Bowl 38-9 to the LA Raiders

The Cosby Show debuted on NBC

The Apple Macintosh was introduced

Indian Prime Minister, Indira Gandhi, is assassinated.

Hit Songs:
"Owner of a Lonely Heart" ... Yes
"Karma Chamelon" ... Culture Club
"Jump" ... Van Halen
"Footloose" ... Kenny Loggins
"Against All Odds" ... Phil Collins
"Let's Hear It For the Boy" ... Deniece Williams

Hit Movies:
Beverly Hills Cop
The Legend of Tarzan, Lord of the Apes
Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom The Karate Kid
The Natural
Police Academy

Hope you all have a wonderful weekend!


Pass Along Post- Blessed

As I was doing my morning blog stalking routine I was touched by a post over at Living with Lindsey titled, "Blessed". Please take a moment and head over there and take a read.

**she has some other amazing things on her blog as well, so don't be shy, snoop a little :)


The Best Couponing Week of My Life

I want to preface this post by saying that I am not usually a “hoarder” in terms of my couponing stockpile. I don’t have enough toothpaste to last us until we’re 30. I don’t have enough toilet paper to TP every house in the Greater Triangle area. I don’t have enough canned goods to feed the Navy. I have a handful of things I got at great prices and I am fully satisfied with my methods.


There comes a time when the stars align and the coupon God’s give you the IDEAL couponing week. I’m talking the Dream Team of couponing deals. Everyone’s perfect week is different, so others may not have thought this week was all that. I did. And a bag of chips.

Last thing, buying this many boxes of cereal doesn’t seem that crazy when you and your significant other can go through a box of it in 4 days. FYI Special K is our favorite. Stars=aligned. I did 98% of my shopping at Harris Teeter this week, with one transaction at each Walgreens and CVS.

Here’s how this will work. I am going to post the pictures and the total retail and the total cost to me. At the end of the post there will be a FULL tally of the items I bought and a grand total of actual retail, and what I paid out of pocket.
**Some of the transactions have been combined so there won’t be 100 pictures of groceries on here

Here we go! This is a judgment free zone :)

The actual retail price is: $76.26
My out of pocket cost: $14.08

The actual retail price is: $57.88
My out of pocket cost: $2.87
This was the BEST day. My total for the Lysol, Special K cereal, Special K bars, and Weight Watchers snacks was actually -.08, so I had to buy a pack of gum to get it back in the positive.

The actual retail price: $40.94
My out of pocket cost: $14.16 (Will be submitting for a $10 rebate for this transaction to J&J)
Total after rebate: $4.16

The actual retail price is: $59.97
My out of pocket cost: $5.54

The actual retail price: $45.20
My out of pocket cost: $.11 (yes, eleven cents)

NOT PICTURED: 8- Special K Cereal; 1 Hormel Turkey Lunch meat (I guess after so many shopping trips you just forget to take pictures of your food…)
The actual retail price: $28
My out of pocket cost: $3.20

Here are a few of the receipts so you all don't think I'm crazy:

32 Boxes of Special K
(Most don’t go out of date until December of this year so at our rate we should be fine. I felt like the crazy lady with 12 cats when I typed that number!)
12 Special K Cereal Bars
9 Kraft Shredded Cheeses
6 Weight Watcher Snack Cakes
4 Nivea Chapstick
4 Finish Dish Detergents
4 Heinz Ketchup
3 Hormel Turkey Lunch Meat
3 Lysol Disinfecting Wipes
2 Yoplait Delights
2 Wet One’s Hand Sanitizers
2 Spot Shot Carpet Cleaners
2 Oust Air Sanitizers
2 Aveeno Shampoos
2 Aveeno Conditioners
1 Aveeno Body Wash
1 Lubriderm Lotion
1 Dawn Foaming Dish Soap
1 3Pack Ivory Soap

TOTAL AFTER REBATES AND ECB’S (CVS reward program)- $18.02

Nuff said.


Coming right along...

I am really feeling good about 2010. I have a feeling I will finally take the plunge and live up to the words I have written about room makeovers in our home. It's scary to commit time and money to something without knowing how it will turn out. But, you live and you learn I guess!

I am going to be getting the paint for our master bedroom Friday of this week, and ordering our new bed hopefully by the end of the month! I just have to make sure I am 100% on the bed before I take the plunge :)

I've also got a few things going on in our guest bedroom, and I am DYING to try out my new paint spray that the BF got me for Christmas but when it is 23 degrees outside, my slippers and blanket get the best of me. So, without a garage, I might have to wait until the weather gets above 50 again to head outside for any period of time.

Shout out to the BEST big brother in the world. He lives 20 minutes from the IKEA in Philly (while I live 3 hrs from the one in Charlotte) and he went on Saturday to get the Malm Queen bed that was on sale for $99 on Saturday only. After standing in line for some time, he got it J THANKS ERIC!!!!

So I have got 3 new beds on the brain (master and 2 guest rooms), and hopefully 1 completed room very soon!


Felt Fortune Cookies

I have a weakness for felt food (and mint chocolate chip icecream). Could there be anything cuter...(these photos are NOT mine... you couldn't pay me to try and sew all of that!)

Well, since I have been seeing cute Valentines Day crafts popping up all over blogland and beyond, I decided to give it a go. The problem... I don't sew (not by choice, just by lack of experience. I have a brand new machine that I can't use...sad). So after I saw the fortune cookies over at Martha Stewart who uses floral wire, I knew there had to be other options out there. While the floral wire method is probably the quickest, the wonderful tutorial I stumbled across on Treasures for Tots was just what I was looking for. Felt+hot glue= DONE!

And since I promised to try to remember to take pictures of the process not just the final outcome, here is an attempt at a tutorial!

What you will need:

-2 peices of felt for 12 cookies (.29 each at Michaels)-cut into 1 1/2 inch circles
-a glass or other tracing object
-hot glue gun (not pictured)
-paper (if you want to write fortunes on them), ribbon, anything else pretty and white to stick out the side.

After you have the circles cute out (believe it or not thats the hardest part) you have a couple different choices:
If you choose to not put any fortune inside you would proceed like this:

If you choose to put a fortune in, you have 1 of 2 choices: You can either glue it down so it is strickly decorative, then proceed glueing in the full semi circle above

OR you can glue the semi with a space left to slide a hand written fortune into it after you are through (not pictured sorry!) But I hope that's clear!

Afer you have the glue in place, fold over:

Next, from the midway point of the crease you just made, glue halfway down one side:

Fold over:

This part can be a little confusing to understand in text, but I'll try!

Take the top part of the little triangle (opposite side of the one you just glued down)

And fold it back kind of turning the cookie inside out-ish. You need 2 hands, so I couldn't get it on film (sorry!)
And that's it. You now have yourself a felt fortune cookie!

And of course you have to put them in something. I wanted to do some practice with cardstock on my Cricut so I just did a little something to the front of my container, but of course, your local craft store will have Valentines Day containers already made.

I don't know about you, but if I got this as a little gift from my BF, I would eat. it. up.

Feeling the love for the felt food?

Linking up at Funky Junk Interiors for SNS! , and BNOTP for Met Monday! (thanks Lori E)
Linked up at ASPTL for DIY Day! and Todays Creative Blog for Get Your Craft On
Come check out the talent