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15+ Awesomely Practical Gift Ideas !

18 Nov

pres

tree

Check out some of these awesomely useful gifts that are great for any occasion!

Christmas – Birthday – Wedding – New Home- Baby Shower – Engagement – Anniversary – Just for the heck of it !

GOOOOD MORNING WORLD!

When I moved across country just a few months ago, I got a big reality check on what items I owned that are awesomely necessary and others that needed to say hello to my friend Goodwill, or even worse, la basura!! (that’s trash for all my Colorado friends who are not familiar with my TexMex background =)

Below are a few items that survived the journey and are 100% necessary to my activities of daily living!!

1. So this first must-have item assumes that most of my readers drink wine =) If you don’t, that’s okay because I’m sure you know somebody who does and being that I am  a wanna-be-wine-connoisseur (and more importantly work with sick people who can sometimes drive me cray cray), this item is not only useful but keeps me sane…

Without further ado,  The Stemless Wine Glass. I love these because you can put them in the dishwasher, they take up way less room,  you or your guest are less likely to spill the wine and it serves the purpose of containing my grapey goodness!! I could probably even go for some fancy seasonal silver ombre ones like shown below, I mean… they will always be put to good use!

2.  Personalized cutting/cheese board

This was one of my faaavorite personalized wedding gifts (thanks again Courtney!!) I loved it so much in fact that I gifted my mom one too (pictured below) …who apparently thinks it is too nice to actually cut on, but that is besides the point! Can you tell I was watching the Game of Thrones series when I ordered this =)  Anyways, who doesn’t like a little bit of cheese with their wine am I right?? These days  I’m currently into sharp white cheddar!! ps. You can often find dealios on these with Groupon!!

cutting board 1

3Flatware

Flatware is always a great, practical gift that most people never think about buying for themselves (eh hem, muah). And of course, how are you going to cut the cheese, on your new cutting board that you are enjoying with your wine?!? Can you picture my at home happy hour scene right now? This scenario could be yours too 😉

I was recently sent a sample flatware set from  Liberty Table Top and I am glad I decided to pinvestigate this situation. I use to think all utensils were made the same, but that is just not the case after using and comparing them side-by-side. When it comes down to flatware, there are only really three things I have discovered that matter to me…

1) Durability, 2) Style &  3) Shine

Just at first glance, do you have a favorite or the three??

5

 

Well, two of those spoons are from my mismatched college collection back in the day and the more stylish, shiny spoon on the far right is from Liberty Table Top’s Pearl Collection .

Liberty Table Top Flatware makes their utensils from the finest quality 18-10 nickel/chrome stainless steel and I’m assuming this is what makes the utensils soo shiny and lustrous =) =).

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The nurse in me also enjoys the fact that all of the stainless steel is tested for lead and other toxic trace elements to ensure you know exactly what you are putting in your mouth 😉

>>>perfect gift for my future niece>> BABY LIBERTY SPOON TWO BACK… Did I mention Liberty Table Top is the ONLY  manufacturer of flatware in the USA (YAY!!)  I am really digging the complete Pinehurst  & Annapolis Collections

4. Keychain phone charger

I don’t think this needs any explanation.. We have all been in a situation where we are out and desperately need some more juice for our phone!. This little nugget is compatible with most smart phones and micro USB devices with a battery Capacity of 1,000mAh (which to be honest, I’m not sure how mAh equates to time…anybody??) Either way, I can think of more than a few times when this would have come in handy.

Keychain Phone Charger

5. The Crockpot

As simple as this item may seem, you gotta love it and definitely have to have it!! I mean, what else can you throw a bunch of rando items into before work, let sit for hours, than come home and your house smells aaaahmazing?!? Betcha didn’t know that Kohl’s even sales some with fancy designs eh?

Another handy idea, be the Betty Crocker influence you never thought you could be and give this away with a crockpot cook book! My hubster would love for my crock pot  repertoire to be expanded =)

6. Just click here for my FAVORITE things in 2014.. I wouldn’t want you to miss out on any of these gift giving goodies!!

fave

 

7.  The hedgehog Serving dish 

For all of my entertainers out there, this is just too practical and cute to pass up! Also a great way to prevent spreading germs with multiple grubby hands reaching in one bowl 😉  Less dishes = successful Wine Down Wednesday meetup!

The Hedgehog Serving Dish, $25 | 28 Practical Yet Clever Gifts That Are Anything But Lame

8. The Gift that Keeps on Giving

Give the gift that keeps on giving ,  like a year member ship to a monthly wine club, kid’s museum, amazon prime subscription, dance lessons or subscription Box idea such as: Birchbox (makeup madness) Umba Box (fun crafts), Love with Food (snacks), For the Makers (fashion-forward jewelry projects), Kiwi Crate (moms +kids crafts), Craft Coffee, BarkBox (my pup’s dream box)

9. D.I.Y Medicine Cabinet

This is something nobody ever thinks about until they are not  feeling so hot, but boy will they be thankful for you when they need it. Last year I put together a little D.I.Y medicine cabinet for my family’s white elephant exchange that contained all of my favorite go to OTC meds and first aid gear like: Ibuprofen, Tylenol, Benadryl Dayquil/Nyquil combo back, BC Powder (the best for migraines and cramps!!>> side note. contains Aspirin so keep away from the kiddos), Pepto, Flonase, Zyrtec, Robitussin,  bandaids,  rubbing alcohol, gauze,  steri strips, neosporin, ect. (I forgot to take a picture at the time, but I just bought a plastic container from Walmart and stuffed it with the goodies mentioned above)

10. Face Mug

I know this may be a stretch, but if you loooooove warm home-made chocolate chip cookies and a glass of milk like me… THIS IS AWESOOOME !! It helps control the amount of cookies you eat too because it can only fit about three meaning you have to get off your big bum to eat more =) I also think this would be great for some soup and crackers, popcorn and candies during a movie night or hot coco and peppermint chocolate bark!

 

11. Edible Ink Pens

The crafty side of me could not resist this clever pressie. Back to my love of cookies, it is even more fun to consume them when they are all fanced up & decorated! I suspect this could be a fun Elf on The shelf  or party game opportunity  as well…. 😉

Edible Ink Pens

12. Ghirardelli Chocolate Basket

Lets face it, unless you are a diabetic or allergic to chocolate, this present is IRRESISTIBLY awesome and great for all ages. And if you are one of those people who allegedly does not like any type of chocolate (dark, milky, white, peppermint, caramel, ganache, flavored, ect), than we just can’t be friends because you are clearly prejudice… although who am I to judge because I’m pretty much an addict !!

4-tier Trademark Metallic Tower

13. D.I.Y Coasters

I think we have already been through this with numero uno, but everybody drinks some sort beverage on a daily basis & ya gotta use a coaster to keep your furniture looking good. The other great thing about D.I.Y coasters… they are customizable, inexpensive, easy to make & cute!

coasters

14. Any of these 10 Awesome Beauty/Body Products that I use on reg! (some potentially good for stocking stuffers too)

beauty

15. Roomba, Scooba or cleaning service!! 

Did I ever tell you about the time I won a Roomba in college being in the audience on the Dr. Phil Show? What was even more epic, my roommate was in the audience as well so we came home with two dueling Roombas in our apartment!

Since then  my Roomba has died for unknown reasons (potentially the hard life with the suspect 20yr old shaggy apartment carpet), but I so desperately want another one. I’m also very interested in the Scooba (a robot that sweeps, pre-soaks, scrubs and squeegees hard floors, eliminating the need to sweep before scrubbing ). I will also admit I miss the ladies from my previous cleaning service and I would be delighted to have any of these options available again in the near future (wink, wink)!

16. The Book,   Creating Really Awesome Free Things: 100 Seriously Fun, Super Easy Projects for Kids

So I may be slightly biased on this one, but my seester is a master crafter & author of this fun craft activity book for kids. This would be a great pressie for kiddos, moms, teachers, your babysitter, soon-to-be-momm or does doting auntie of super fun nieces and nephews ring a bell =) =) Click the link above to place your pre-order now =) =)

Happy Gift Giving!!

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20+ DIY Dog Costumes!

5 Oct

Happy Monday!!

I looove October!! Fall is in air, I grow another year wiser and Halloween is just around the corner=) =) I must admit that I don’t normally dress my pup up for Halloween, but I have been obsessed with this one costume in particular (#7) ever since I laid eyes on it. Not only is this  costume super flipping cute, but the model and his video make me smile EVERY TIME!!

But first, keep in mind what Rollie looks like

and which costume you think might suit him best 😉

rollie

 

# 1 Breast Cancer Awareness Month >> not only is this ridiculously cute, but also great way to help raise awareness for Breast Cancer!! Feeling generous, donate here =)

romeo 4

#2 Skeleton (with non-toxic, pet-safe paint) by Bryn Anderson>> great way to make a comfy non-restricting costume for you pet!!

skeleton-dog-halloween-costume-non-toxic-pet-paint-5

#3 Tiger

#4 Baby Deer via flickr

Ed's next halloween costume, thanks to Meg W. for the idea:

#5 Zombie (soo this is probably not so much a diy project unless you have some major grooming and artist skillios, but I had to share the pic…pretty AWESOME!!)

Zombie Dog Costume

#6 Rock Lobster

#7 The Teddy Bear by Cindy Roth

Cunning disguise: Roth crafted the fluffy ensemble for her tiny 14-inch-tall puppy out of a plush toy

#8 Gobble Til You Wobble

Gobble Til You Wobble

#9 Doggie Dino Tank by Marth Stewart.

 

Doggie Dino Tank

#10 Pirate by Luigi & Me

DIY dog costume - Pirate - Halloween

#11 The Incredible Hulk

 Homemade Halloween Costumes For Dogs #5 - Dog Halloween Costume

#12 The Movie Up (this DIY costume wins extra brownie points because I absolutely looove this movie too!!)

UP

#13 Frida Kahlo by Jaderbomb

mexican costumes

#14 Astronaut by Angelica SantaMaria

#15 So Fresh and So Clean Clean Lufa

8e467c9e32f98b707a4ea1ce6ea99c02

#16 Blues Brothers

#17 Guilty  (so I know this wasn’t meant to be a costume, but I love when owners post pics of their guilty pets. I am thinking I could do this to Rollie and on his dog tag just put “Guilty” ?!? Either way, these make me laugh

#18 Caught Red Handed

Chewing Up Mama's Lipstick, Destroying The Door, Sweetening The Floor With Sugar, Trying To Eat Jesus... Guilty Dogs Pose For 'Shamed' Pictures Amid The Messes They Created.

#19 Lucky (somehow I suppose Lucky would have to be attached to your pup yet out of reach to make a good costume)

Chewing Up Mama's Lipstick, Destroying The Door, Sweetening The Floor With Sugar, Trying To Eat Jesus... Guilty Dogs Pose For 'Shamed' Pictures Amid The Messes They Created.

#20 A Hungry Hobo

MollyHungryHobo

#21 The classic Hotdog for any of  you can knit by KJ HAY

Crochet Dog Costume

#22 Antoine Dogson (surely you remember this overnight internet sensation>>> if not, video below for you viewing pleasure!)

#23 Ewok

Ewok Dog Costume

Have you made any DIY outfits for you dog?  If so leave post a pic and please share =) =)

Happy Fall Y’all,

Kelley B.

 

D.I.Y. Personalized Memory Game & My Favorite Nephew turns 1!!!

22 Mar

Good Morning!

My favorite nephew, Maxwell, is turning one! (tomorrow =) =)!!

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m7

So exciting and yet even though he is rather advanced for his age (literally the kid started walking at 9 months–crazyness) he obviously is not able to say too many words quite yet…  However, I would not put it past him to start learning more words and names sooner than most, so I thought I would make him a personalized Memory Game with pictures of the family to help him learn the most important peeps =)

Not only is a personalized memory game a great way for youngsters to familiarize themselves with family, it’s made with love  and affordable. Another bonus in my situation, the Memory Game was one of my sister’s favorite games growing up so it will be fun for the both of them =)

jamie & kel 3

Ready to make your own Personalized Memory Game? Check out the attachment below with instructions and pictures!

What you will need:

8.5 x 11 scrapbook paper (one fancy side, one white side). The pieces of paper depends on the amount of memory cards to be made. Four 3.5 x 3.5 individual cards fit on one sheet (or two matching pairs)

-family photos saved onto you computer

-scissors

printer with ink (colored or black and white ink depending on preference)

-laminating paper (amount depends on # of memory cards in the game)

INSTRUCTIONS

D.I.Y Memory Game Instructions

FREE MEMORY GAME LABELS PRINTABLES

Memory Game Labels

Final Product

 game 3

game 4

game 5

game 6

Want More Maxwell pics, duh =) Check out his partay!

maxwell collage

m5

Want more crafting action?!  Check out my sister’s blog at C.R.A.F.T!

Happy Gifting & Happy Happy Birthday Boy Max!!!

Kelley =)

Paint Your Builder-Grade Kitchen Cabinets DIY Style! >>>My Kitchen Makeover<<<

20 Jan

Kitchen Makeover 1

The finishing touches on my kitchen remodel finally happened today and I’m sooo excited, just in time before school starts too =) =)

        Are you ready to see how you can transform you builder-grade kitchen cabinets into custom ones?!?  Let me just go ahead and say, the husband and I started this project late friday night (mind you I worked 7pm-7am that friday and saturday night in the E.R) and did not finish until late monday night.  We worked like maniacs, but you must allow for sanding, priming, dry time, double coats, custom beadboard and cut out action sooooo…. it’s definitely a bit of a project BUT TOTALLY DO-ABLE!!! Things started progressing much quicker too once I discovered the BEST PROFESSIONAL CABINET PAINTING TOOL !!

What you need to your Paint Builder-grade Wooden Kitchen cabinets and Wooden Kitchen Table

kitchen unfinished

Whizz 4 inch mini foam roller (one for every paint color and/or person helping) I used two! = THE BEST PROFFESIONAL CABINET PAINTING TOOL!!

Mouse Sander w/ sander pads to fit the mouse ( I borrowed this so there was not cost here, thanks Kim!!)

Zinsser Bull’s Eye 1-2-3- Primer for all surfaces: I bought tinted gray primer since I was painting my cabinets black

Valspar Duramax Paint + Primer (Interior) >>>( in whatever colors you are choosing to paint your cabinets, so I purchased black and white. I only used 1/2 gallon of black for my entire kitchen including the table. I bought a quart of white paint for my island and of course had lots of left over! I loved working with this paint because it covered well and  I felt that it did not splatter near as much as paints I have used in the past (aka, thicker and easier to paint with)

Two-inch Natural Bristle angle paint brush (for the nooks and crannies)

–paint drop cloth (psst. I literally used left over christmas paper =) =)

–screwdriver and/or drill (for removing and hanging cabinets)

-towels (paper, microfiber, whatev) These are for wiping off the cabinets after you sand them!

>>>Optional

blue painter’s tape: I was just very careful when painting the edges of my built-in cabinets in the kitchen, but if you are new to painting I would suggest taping off the edges so your kitchen walls don’t end up the same color as your new cabinets

Beadboard: if you want beadboard on the ends of your cabinets and islands to make them look custom<<< makes a HUGE difference >> this really makes your cabinets and island look custom!! (amount obviously depends on cabinets and/or island) I used about 40-48 sqft)

–jigsaw (I borrowed this, thanks again Kim)!

–finishing nails

–wood glue

paint pyramids— I have read these can be helpful to place your cabinets on when drying, but I just layed my cabinets on christmas paper in the garage =)

Project Timeline

Friday night:

-Remove all dishes, silverware, anything from the cabinet surfaces that is to be sanded and painted. Move to a separate room otherwise your dishes will get sand-blasted

-Remove all cabinets, drawers and hardware. Place hardward in ziplock baggies so you don’t loose them for later!

1

Sand every surface including the cabinets front and back. The primer I bought says you don’t have to necessarily sand before priming, but I wanted these cabinets to look profesh so the hubster roughed them up just a bit, but did not take them down to the grain. I also did not think gel stain would work on these builder grade cabinets because the middle surface is thinner than the edges (typical builder-grade style) so I didn’t want to run the risk of having the two different thickness/type of wood absorb the gel stain color differently–talk about a potentially disaster!!

Also  you might be contemplating.. Do I really need to do the backside of the cabinets, I mean nobody really see’s them>>>The answer would be yes, if you are going to paint like a profesh, don’t be a 50%er… I know, I know, I contemplated it too but once the project was in full swing, you already got paint in your hair so why not right!?!? Plus, it WILL LOOK GHETTO when you or your kiddos leave cabinets doors open and the backside is still that lovely oak color!

Saturday:

Wipe off all excess saw-dust with wet microfiber towel and then let cabinets dry or wipe dry.

Prime the front side of the cabinets using the foam roller going in the direction of the wood grain and using the 2 inch angle brush for the nooks and crannies.  Make sure when your done with one cabinet to look for drips and roll them out, otherwise that drip mark will be visible when you paint your top coat>> does not look as nice in the end with drip marks on your cabinets!

2

Let front side of cabinets dry completely. I laid my cabinets flat in the garage on some christmas wrapping paper left over from the holidays. You can also use painter’s pyramids, tarp, or lie them flat on the concrete (I did this when I ran out of Christmas paper) as long as you don’t mind some spillage as that can occur.

 Prime the back-side of all the cabinets and let dry. The foam roller is KEY to making your cabinets look professional, take your time and roll out any drip marks.  The husband primed the kitchen while I was working on the cabinets in the garage. At some point before going into work that night, I started painting the first layer of black top coat on a couple of cabinets.

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DSC05462

Tip: every night after you are done painting instead of cleaning all the brushes for the night, you can wrap your foam roller and paint brush up in aluminum and stick it in the fridge=) In the morning, unwrap the foil from the paint brush and you are ready to go!

Sunday:

Finish the first black coat on the front-side and back side of cabinets. I had so many cabinets to paint, by the time I finished painting the last cabinet, the first one I painted was dry and ready for the final 2nd black coat on the front-side of of the cabinet. I also painted the first & 2nd black coat  in the kitchen between cabinet drying time

DSC05466

DSC05467

Monday: 

Finish the 2nd top layer front and back to the cabinets and to the kitchen. Once everything is COMPLETELY dry and touched up, start hanging cabinets then putting on hardware .

Don’t forget about those cabinet base boards. Instead of using blue painter’s tape, I shoved magazine pages in between the tile and wood to paint the cabinet edges that touched the tile. I painted the kitchen island white to help tie in the existing white appliances. Sure I think stainless steel appliances would look much better, but those just aren’t in my  budget =)

DSC05470

Note: If you are going to put beadboard on the edges of your cabinets and island, you can make a trip to Lowes to pick this us while everything is drying. The husband measured the island and ends of the built-in kitchen  cabinets with a diagram and I had my friendly Lowes’ lumber department associate cut the pieces to appropriate size.   The Lowes’ associate made most of the large cuts for me in-store, but we had to use the jigsaw for the power outlets and the small in-cut at the bottom of the island. If you are going to make cuts yourself, remember you want the breadboard all going the same direction (vertical as picture below).

Helpful hint: when using the jigsaw to make a power outlet cut in the middle of the board, here is a helpful video

DSC05473

To  attach the beadboard, we slathered on some wood glue and the hammered in some finishing nails. Length of finishing nails should depend on the thickness of your cabinets and beadboard that you pick out.

Other Kitchen Upgrades

(some occurred before painting the cabinets, some after )

–I painted the pantry door black. See how here and the type of oil-based paint I had to use that was different from the cabinets

–I painted the center piece of kitchen table black using the same steps I used for the kitchen cabinets

–I had granite installed and when I did so, I had the island extended to create more seating.

–The Kitchen walls got a coat of brown paint called “Steady Brown”. This is two shades darker than latte that is painted on the main walls so it gives the kitchen a nice subtle contrast. I also pained my niche and hallways this steady brown color. You can always checkout the rest of my diy home improvements by clicking on my “House Tour” tab above

–The husband and I installed a rustic metal orb  Chandelier  over the newly painted kitchen table(15% off)

–I spray painted the brass door knobs a hammered rustic brown color. Remove, take outside, place on newspaper and give two coats with this

–Added hardware to the cabinets. Adding hardware not only keeps you from putting your grimy fingers on the doors, but it creates interest, just like when you wear jewelry. Maybe not entirely necessary, but looks so pretty!

–Knocked out the center of two cabinets and paid to have glass installed. You can cut these out with a jigsaw if you want to do this too!!

 All in all, the materials to paint the kitchen cabinet, kitchen table,

 glass installation in two kitchen cabinets ($102),

new metal orb chandelier at 15% off ($138)

and new wreath for the pantry cost

less than $400

>>>FINISHED PRODUCT<<<

kitchen 8

kitchen 3

kitchen 7

I know this is quite the project and if you need any clarification on what I did, feel free to leave a comment. Also, if you have done this before and have any suggestions, please let me know how this could be done even better and faster in the future!!

Happy Home Improving!!

Kelley B.

10 Ways To Customize Builder-grade Bathrooms

17 Jan

 bathroom 40

       Don’t you just love your standard builder-grade bare bones bathroom.?!?..me neither! In fact, my starter home not only had builder-grade everything in the house, but ever worse a lack there of in the bathrooms…. a.k.a no linen closet, no toothpaste cabinet/ wall storage and my master bathroom even had carpeting>>>>> sCaRy, I know!!!!

So, here are a few tips and tricks to take your builder-grade bathroom to the next level.

1. Add some Unique wall storage/cabinets  

bathroom 3

I found this gem above at Hobby Lobby (of course used my 40% off coupon). Bonus: my friends who stop by are welcome to take a sprintz of perfume from my collection =)

bathroom 21

by DIY Playbook

2. DIY Framed Mirror by Saved By Suzy

bathroom 15

3. Make a feature wall

bathroom 16

wall art decal

You can also try some Wall Decals (super easy and not permanet), Stencil action, tile, pallet wood (pictured above by Mandy Jean Chic), or simply paint one wall a different color

4. Change out the cheap builder-grade hooks & fixtures 

bathroom 22

Remove those silver towel holders and racks and replace with some old door knobs or shabby chic diy-er!

by Not Just a Housewife

bathroom 20

by ArtsyVaVa

5) Buy Vanity Fixture Shade Boxes to cover your Hollywood Makeup Counter Light bulbs

bathroom 23

by HGTV Spa Retreat Bathroom

I have seen these vanity  Box Shades at Lowes, but when I went by my home depot they did not carry them =(

6.  Toiletries for your guest! Collect  or buy individual toiletries for your guest and incorporate them into your decor! (don’t forget to leave out a visible extra roll of toilet paper..we all know drip dry is not fun ladies!)

bathroom 27

bathroom 2

7) Add a chandelier (electric or a candle one) If you make it a candle one (much much easier, don’t forget you can buy battery operated LED flickering candles with timers–just got mine from Ross for around $10). You can see from my House Tour, I sort of loove my chandeliers. I have added some to my bathroom, guest room and deck (all candle of course because they are soo easy =)

bathroom 30

by Aiken House & Garden

8) Jazz up the window with a wrought iron piece, diy shutters or even some simple curtains

bathroom 1

I got this piece 50% off at Kirkland’s. I got sick of it hanging in my entry hallway and it just so happened to be a perfect fit in my bathroom window! Prior to my entryway, it served as a head board in college>> great purchase =)

by funky junk interiors

9) Get creative when you don’t have a linen closet

bathroom 31

by 11 Magnolia Lane (hello re-purposed wine rack!)

bathroom 6

^^ currently my situation

utilize every SQUARE inch of your bathroom!

10. Paint your bathroom cabinets!

bathroom 32

by My Uncommon Slice of Suburbia

bathroom 34

by: Primitive & Proper

I hope you find these tips helpful &  easy. I have already utilized quite a bit of them myself and hope to make all of them happen in the near future! Do you have any additional tips on how to upgrade the standard builder-grade bathroom?

Happy Home Improving!!

Kelley B =)

 

10 New Years Decor Ideas

22 Dec

z12


Gooood Morning!

I know Christmas is just around the corner (yay!!) and plans have been set in stone since like  August (at least mine have because nurses have to make their holiday schedule way too far in advance) but, what is your GP > game plan> for New Years?

Whether your ringing in the new year with family, friends, a night out on the town or a house partay, you still want to be somewhat festive right?!?!  >>> Well, you  might be thinking between  all the  pumpkin,  turkey and Christmas tree action  you don’t have any time, energy or money left for the New Year,  but this year you can make it happen!! =)

Check out  these fun, easy, inexpensive ideas that even utilize some of your Christmas decor!

1) All that GLITTERS isn’t going to cost you GOLD

This craft can be used in two different ways. First, you can use some left over wine bottles from the holidays (don’t you just loove recycling!!=), cover them  in modge podge, roll in the glitter of your choice, tie some balloons to the bottle and use them as table center pieces. Or buy the  champagne of your choice (remember, does not have to be fancy cause the labels are covered in glitter) glitter the bottle up and then serve at midnight!!

from Girls of T.O

2) Balloons and bubbly

We have to love balloons because they are cheap, fun, and really add some depth and texture to the festivities. Blow up some balloons, tape them behind your bubbly table in a whimsical pattern and VOILA!

more ideas from TopDreamer

3) Glassware [or plasticware] Arrangement

Depending on what you already have lying around the house, the good news about glass is that it all matches =). And if you don’t have a lot of glassware (or perhaps nervous about some rowdy friends) bust out or buy some plasticware!

Make an arrangement for the: bar, mantle, table ect.

Add: champagne, Christmas ball ornaments, beads, crystals, Christmas light (the list goes on)

from Homedit

4) Good ole Martha Stewart Streamers!

from Martha Stewart

5) Custom count-down Flutes

Martha has some self-stick numbers to create special countdown flutes for your guests! I mean, the 10 second countdown is pretty much the highlight of the party, right? Peel the stickers off after the fact or use plastic flutes. If you can’t find Martha’s special stickers, i’m some glitter tulip paint would probably do the trick!

from Martha Stewart

6) Create a signature drink for the night!

Fill some flutes with pink cotton candy and slowly pour champagne over it>> Talk about a fun, festive, bubbly drink!

from More Cheaper

7) Christmas turned NYE Chandelier

Take that star from the top of the tree, grab some extra lights and hang the silver/gold  ball ornaments from the chandelier to make festive light feature

from Bright Bold & Beautiful

8) Photo op back drop

Create a fun photo op back drop (or any back drop for that matter) with a white sheet and some Christmas lights.

from Wedding Bee

9) Time for a Treat

Bake a circular cake with 12 cupcakes to go around and create a midnight treat by adding a clock face and numbers! You can never go wrong with cake at a party

from Acasarella

10) Gold dipped Balloons

Once again, balloons are an inexpensive way to add some fun to the party. You can also have a ton of balloons blown up with helium to cover the ceiling so guest get to make their way through festive streamers that hang long below.

from Balloon Time

Cheer to the New Year!

Kelley

Guest Bedroom Makeover: design on a dime!

16 Sep

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Hey There,

I’m excited to share my long over due guest bedroom makeover, especially since it cost me less than $250.! How is this even possible you might ask?!?  Well, I reused, re-purposed & made some savvy shopping choices… specifically  @ Craigslist, Ross & Walmart.

guest bedroom

(previous situation)

For starters, I reused the left over green paint from my master bedroom to create a colored feature wall in the guest bedroom. That headboard which is actually an old plantation shutter screen was given to me by my aunt, but any type of room/screen divider could work as a nice headboard

Then, I busted out my old master bedroom queen size quilt that I was no longer using since I upgraded to a king size bed. I believe my mom originally found that at a garage sale of some sort.

Next, I recycled the old foot-board from my queen size bed and turned it on its side. From there I added a cheap door hanging mirror from Walmart and some cute key hooks from Ross. I attached the mirror with velcro and nailed in the key hooks=)

Oh and the rug  that you see… it is a 5×7 bargain find from Ross that I purchased for $49.99=)

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The towels = Walmart’s Better Homes brand !

Next, one of my  favorite finds is this  shabby chic dresser that came from the one and only Craigslist for $95

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If you are wondering about the fun accessories a top of the dresser… yep, they are  all from Ross. The little bird went for a mere $5.99, candles sticks $ 8 – $12, the picture frame $8.99 and the blue mirrored tray was $19.99. I also paid homage to one of my favorite tv shows, Breaking Bad, to help create a fun Wifi password for gues. I made the wifi art on picmonkey.com!

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Have you ever noticed I have a thing for chandeliers? Well, I moved the one from above my tub to top off this shabby chic look. I also painted this old wicker chair that use to be in my sister’s room way back in the day the same color as my feature wall.

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Last but not least, final touches to the room included fun pillows from Ross that ranged from $6.99-$8.99

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…and a d.i.y “be our guest” banner made from scrap book paper and washi tape =)

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So what do you think? Any plans for your guest bedroom? Any savvy saving guest bedroom decor tricks you can share with us?

Happy decorating =)

Kelley B.

How to Tie a Scarf into a Vest

10 Aug

scarf

Happy Sunday Morning!!

I just discovered a new AWESOME trick and had to share the video from youtube!!! I really looove scarves, but they aren’t always the most practical accessory during the lovely Texas summer… eh hem the 94 degree temperature yesterday.

Let’s just say you don’t need any extra fabric around your neck, except maybe to pat the beads of sweat dry… or perhaps if you are literally trying to avoid being a redneck–which yes, is a real issue in Tejas, but it’s not just the neck you have to worry about. For instance, a sunburn to the tops of your feet from wearing flip flops (really sucky) or that suhweet raccoon eye look from wearing sunglasses when you haven’t put good ole SPF on

Anywho…NOW, you can rock a scarf as a cute light-weight bohemian-esk vest without fear of suffocation =)

Rock out with yo scarf out !!

K.B

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10 Laundry Room Ideas/Inspirations

26 Jul

Happy Weekend Everybody!!

This week I have been in a project/house beautification mode, but one room that always has been neglected for far too long is my laundry room =/. Maybe because it has always been  a disazz or perhaps cause it’s my favorite place to hide all of my junk that doesn’t fit in a drawer,  but either way it has issues…

So, I have been pinvestigating and found 10 awesome ideas/tricks to jazz up the Laundry Room… The only problem is I’m just no exactly sure which direction to go….any thoughts?!? What’s going on in your laundry room?!?

1) Stencil A Pattern by View Along The Way

Now I do have some experience with stenciling ( like my damask master bathroom wall which I am in love with), but maybe I should try something new?!?iUpdated Laundry Room on a budget at View Along the Way, washer and dryer, stenciled wall, turquoise room, painted floor, striped floor, how to paint a striped floor, how to stencil a wall, how to style a laundry roomor throw up some wallpaper! I have no experience with wallpaper but I might have to take a whack at it!!

2) D.I.Y Space Saver by Good Housekeeping

— I am always into crafts/beautification with a purpose !! This nifty idea would definitely be more useful and cuter than that awkward space/nitch everybody has in their laundry room that hides the old mop bucket..or maybe that just me?!?

3) Paint  a Trendy Pattern… like Herrinbone  by Remodelaholic

— I just love whats going on here.. a great  use of space (or lack there of kind like my issues) + awesome organization. I definite contender here =) Some other fun patter options include: chevron, houndstooth, honeycomb, quatrefoil & fish scale

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or ombre anyone?
4) Shabby Chic it up by Eleven Magnolia Lane
–if you haven’t already taken my “House Tour” you will see I have quite the love for shabby chic that shows up in my bedroom and especially master bath.. (ps. dont ya love the quatrefoil stenciled wall here too =)
laundry room redo
5) Rustic and Re-purposed  by  Faded Charm
I’m totally diggin this look but my laundry room is just too small =(
 Farmhouse Laundry Room Katyelliott 3435 › 10 Country Laundry Room ...
6) Fun with Decals by IHeart Organization
Decals are always an easy, quick, mess free option to beautify a room.. I love how they turned out in my guest bathroom, but should I go for something else?!?
7) Industrial look
 

8) Bringing the Outdoors In

I’m liking this  over-sized sink here to soak clothes or bathe the dog!!

industrial... perfect for gardening

9) Texture-ize  with Beadboard/ Wood/Stone /Brick

 

 

10) Sheer Genius

–forgo the laundry room all together and add that space into your new awesome &  grandiose closet!!

Go ahead and take a rest on you chaise lounge that you can now fit in your huge closet from all that space your saved.. Oh and don’t bother rummaging through drawers cause you got class cabinets (kinda like window shopping) soo maybe a little over the top but would I go there…… um YES PLEASE, if I no budget =)

So, what’s your favorite?!?! Clearly # 10 isn’t happening (any time soon anyways.. a girl can dream right?!? =) I would love you thoughts and suggestions on what you have done!!

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Have a wonderful weekend

K.B

 

 

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D.I.Y Swimmer’s Ear Drops — (Prevention Tips Too)!

15 Jul

swimmer's ear

Hey Everybody,

I am currently in my  pediatric rotation of my FNP clinical and man do I see A LOT of stinking Swimmer’s Ear, a.k.a External otitis. Tis the season (yay summer) but I have also learned that most people I see are not using preventative measure for their kiddos like ear drops.

Good News, I am going to teach you how to make your own cheap and easy  Swimmer’s Ear Drops with just  2 ingredients

According to the American Academy of Otolaryngology (2014), you can do the following to make you own preventative ear drips:

Ingredients:

1) rubbing alcohol

2) vinegar

Directions: mix equal portions (50/50) together to fit into a  container of your choice

Please note: Before using any drops in the ear, it is important to be certain you or your child does not have a perforated eardrum!! Also these  drops only help prevent and DO NOT TREAT  an existing swimmer’s ear.

According to the American Academy of Otolaryngology (2014), the ear drops should be administered as followed:

  •  Drops are more easily administered if done by someone other than the patient.
  • • The patient should lie down with the affected ear facing upwards.
  • • Drops should be placed in the ear until the ear is full.
  • After drops are administered, the patient should remain lying down for a few minutes so the drops can be absorbed.

How Swimmer’s Ear occurs: ” Breakdown of the skin-cerumen barrier is the first step in the pathogenesis of external otitis. Inflammation and edema of the skin then leads to pruritus (itching) and obstruction. The pruritus prompts scratching that may create further injury. This sequence of events alters the quality and amount of cerumen (ear wax) produced, impairs epithelial migration, and increases the pH  of the ear canal. The resulting dark, warm, alkaline, moist ear canal becomes an ideal breeding ground for numerous organisms” (Goguen, 2014, p.1).

Most common S/S  of Swimmer’s ear:

“Itching inside the ear and  pain that gets worse when you tug on the auricle (outer ear).Other signs and symptoms may include any of the following:

  • • Sensation that the ear is blocked or full
  • • Drainage
  • • Fever
  • • Decreased hearing
  • • Intense pain that may spread to the neck, face, or side of the head
  • • Swollen lymph nodes around the ear or in the  upper neck. Redness and swelling of the skin around the ear” (Swimmer’s Ear, 2014, p.1).

Why this d.i.y concoction works: the rubbing alcohol helps dry up any trapped moisture while the vinegar helps restore the ear’s natural pH so nasty bacteria are less likely to grow!

Tips on How to Prevent Swimmer’s Ear if you Swim Frequently

  • Shake your ears dry after swimming
  • Blow dry your ears on a low setting, holding the dryer 12 inches away.
  • Use ear drops after swimming to prevent ear infections; these are available OTC at most pharmacies OR just d.i.y and make your own =)
  • Consider wearing ear plugs made for swimming (Goguen, 2014, p.1).

References:

Goguen, L. (2014). External otitis: pathogenesis, clinical features, and diagnosis. UpToDate. Retrieved from http://www.uptodate.com.manowar.tamucc.edu/contents/external-otitis-pathogenesis-clinical-features-and-diagnosis?source=search_result&search=swimmer%27s+ear&selectedTitle=1~66

Goguen, L. (2014). Patient information: external otitis (including swimmer’s ear) (Beyond the Basics). UpToDate. Retrieved from http://www.uptodate.com.manowar.tamucc.edu/contents/external-otitis-including-swimmers-ear-beyond-the-basics?source=search_result&search=swimmer%27s+ear&selectedTitle=1~66

Swimmer’s Ear. (2014). American Academy of Otolaryngology. Retrieved from http://www.entnet.org/content/swimmers-ear

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