Tuesday, November 26, 2013

House Projects {Painting Outside Lamps}

The home projects have already begun. I am trying to do my part of the outside projects and recently I took on our outside lighting situation.
We decided that we liked the shape and type of lights that these were; but they really needed some love!
Let me show ya what I did...
1. I started by cleaning the lights. I just took a mildly damp rag and wiped off any dirt and spider webs from these old things.

2. I then sanded the rough, rusty spots down with sand paper and a Dremel tool. Provided by my husband ;)

3. I cleaned off the lamp again. This time it was to make sure all the dust created by the Dremel was cleared off.

4. I used painters tape to tape all the windows. To make such an awkward taping job easier, I just used an X-acto knife to cut the tape to size while on the window.

Here are some more pictures! This was a such a fun little project.

Glad we decided to re-purpose these outdoor lights! Saved some money and they look good as new. Now I just have to keep up with the glass cleaning!


Thursday, November 21, 2013

How I Stay Organized {5 Tips for Seasonal Decor}

It is getting to be that time of the year. I am starting to think about pulling out my Christmas/Winter decorations and putting my Fall decor away.
 I don't have too many decorations to store, but I do have a few tips and pointers for y'all in order to keep your seasonal items organized.

1. Storage-  The biggest problem with our seasonal decorations is that we only use them one time a year for a short period of time. It is best to store your items in a low traffic area that doesn't affect the functionality and storage space of frequently utilized items. Additionally, when thinking about choosing a storage location for your items, choose a location that is safe and problem free. For example, I live in Florida and I don't have a basement. The garage would be my next guess, but as it's humid here 98% of the year I would rather store my seasonal decor in my larger guest bedroom closet.

2. Group Decorations- How many seasons or holidays do you decorate for? How much decor do you have? These are questions to ask yourself as you are deciding how to group your decorations together. I prefer using bins to separate my seasonal decor, rather than boxes. I use bins for each season and/or holiday I decorate for. Since Christmas is the holiday I have the most decorations for, I have two bins. I have a few items for fall that are separate from Halloween, but I can't justify a fall bin just yet; therefore I use Ziploc bags and small bins to store my fall items and just include them in the larger bin.

3. Label Your Bins- Label your bins. It is easy to pull out your Christmas decorations if you know that is the bin with the Christmas items. I even like to take it a step further if I have multiple bins. I take a Post-it note and write down what is in the bin. I stick it on the inside of the lid. That way, when I open a bin I don't have to dig through the bin to find out what is included. I just glance at the Post-it and know what I have in that particular bin.

4. Purge Items- Did you not use an item this season? Or did you buy some new items to replace older decorations? Make sure you are mindful of your storage space. If you don't have the space to keep all your new and older decorations, take the time to go through your decor items and purge what you don't use in your decorating scheme.

5. Putting Decorations Away- If you start decorating in a certain room each time the season rolls around, then you might try putting your decorations away in that reversed order. This way the room you always want to start in is on top. Same goes for the storage of the bins. When you put your Christmas bins away for the season, don't just set them on top of your spring decor. You would then have to move all your Christmas bins just to get to the other seasons/holidays. Make sure you are rotating your bins each time you pick up your decorations and put them away.

Happy Decorating!


Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Moving: A Fresh Start

You know...there is something about moving. After all the stress of packing, hiring movers, moving,changing addresses, updating family and friends, there is something peaceful about it. It's like a fresh start.
Now the fresh start feeling doesn't come right away. Nope. When I was sitting in my house with boxes piled to the ceiling I just felt overwhelmed and stressed. I never thought it would get finished. But somewhere in the middle of the unpacking I started to feel a joy. Yes, it could be because the excitement of owning our first home was starting to actually take shape, but it was something different for me.
A fresh start.
The idea of a blank canvas and a new layout to play with. I wasn't confined to the same setup as in the condo and it felt awesome to design our new rooms. The fun, new organization that was taking place with the new space meant different functionality and ideas.
To me, it was interesting to experience the wave of emotions after a physical and emotional move, and the only way I can really sum it up is the feeling of a fresh start.
Something new.

As we start to settle into our new home and tackle some house projects I can only feel a bit anxious as a first time homeowner. Will we do it right? Will we make it worse?
I'm grateful to have such a smart, hard working husband who knows way more than I do about any of this; that helps.
But when I start to get worried I try to correct myself. I repeat...
It's a fresh start.
A new adventure.


Thursday, November 14, 2013

Birthday Haul!

Ahhhhh! What a whirlwind this past week has been! I didn't get a chance to blog on Tuesday as per my usual schedule due to moving and having a million and one things going on.
Butttttt.... I'm back with a fun post :)

I was able to do some birthday shopping yesterday at Ulta and Home Goods, and I thought I would share my purchases from Ulta. I will be doing a living room tour when the house is all situated and that will include the items from Home Goods.

I purchased the Original in Clean and Classic and the Hint of Color for Blondes. I haven't tried a dry shampoo before and I decided to pick one up because it takes me so long to style (straighten) my hair. By the time my second day hair rolls around it isn't super dirty but I still want my hair to feel clean without having to wash my hair for the day and redo all my styling

I had my eye on this Tarte Gorgeous Getaways Portable Palette since I received the Ulta catalog in the mail.
I apologize for the poor quality in these photos. My lighting wasn't ideal. I picked this up because the deal was AMAZING! The palette includes 16 new full sized Amazonian clay eyeshadows, 4 new full size Amazonian clay 12 hour-blushes (which is the reason I bought it), and then 3 new full full size maracuja lip-glosses. It also includes the portable palette compact so you can pick out what you want to take with you.
I love Tarte blushes, so the blushes themselves were an amazing deal. I can't wait to play with this palette.

This little baby I wanted to try for before I blow dry my hair. I had read good reviews about this new Living Proof line and this product in particular.

Looking forward to trying my new products! Let me know if you want a review on any of the above products and I will do one after I try it out for a bit.


Thursday, November 7, 2013

How I Stay Organized {Gift Giving Holiday Checklist}

Ahhhhhh... it is that time! The time when I start to think Christmas! Truth be told I have been working on Christmas for awhile now; but, nonetheless I have really pressed the play button on getting my Holiday Gift Giving Checklist up and running.

Now I have to mention this, I did not create this particular checklist. I have created my own in the past, but early this year I stumbled across a Professional Organizer (like myself) named Alejandra and she just had a great checklist in my opinion. I will point out what really made me switch when I go through it all.

I will have links to her video and where to download a copy of this at the end of the post.
Now I changed the colors because I'm all about brighter fun colors!

Lets take you through this!
1. Family/Friend: This is self explanatory. List everyone in your family (and your spouse's family, if married). This includes everyone that you will give a gift, card, or stocking to.

2. Card Dates: This is the main reason why I decided to go with Alejandra's checklist. I love the idea of this card process. The card dates listed are December 1st through the 9th. The way this is set up, it allows you to write out Christmas cards a little bit each day. I hate when I have to do so much writing in one sitting. Breaking it up by day allows you to do a bit everyday until December 9th, which is a perfect time to finally send out all your Christmas cards :)

3. Gift or Stocking? Or Both?: These two columns are just for me to check off if I have purchased the gift item and/or the stocking items. You will notice the blacked out cells which just mean the particular person is not receiving a gift and/or stocking stuffers.

4. Grey Area: This is just a personal section that I wanted to explain because it is different from the blacked out cells. The grey area is where I write the different stocking stuffer ideas I have. I made it grey so I know they aren't really gift items. Trust me...this girl has got to distinguish between the two!

5.Deadline for Gift: This is helpful when you need to set a timeline to be finished Christmas shopping. You will notice I have two pretty different dates. I am celebrating Christmas earlier this year with my family, so my deadline to have their gifts purchased is December 11th. However, my husband's family's gifts can be purchased all the way up to December 23rd if need be. I don't like to wait that long though...

6. Budget: I like this column because you can set limits on your Christmas shopping. It is helpful to keep track of how much you want to spend on each person, but also it is perfect for those Christmas exchanges. For example, my dad's side of the family does a small gift exchange. We draw names out of a hat and we each have one person to buy for rather than buying for everyone (budget friendly). There is also a limit, or budget, to how much the gift can cost. That is perfect for me to write in the budget category because I usually have a harder time sticking to a budget. One thing I am going to change for next year is inserting a column for money actually spent. It will be nice to know if I go over budget on a gift and how much I was over.

7. Thank You Cards: I typically don't send out Christmas 'Thank Yous'. Mainly because I'm with my family and I thank them for any gifts at that time. However, some families are split for Christmas or you may get a gift sent in the mail. A Thank You card would be nice to send upon those occasions.

Happy Holiday Prep!


Tuesday, November 5, 2013

How I Stay Organized {Packing to Move:Disheveled}

As an organizer, it is painful to see my condo slowly come to it's demise. Box after box seems to be piling up and it is only a few more days before I lose my mind.
I have discovered a few tips to help keep order when order seems lost.

1. Re-arrange: In order for me to keep our packed moving boxes in a easy, central location to get to; I just went ahead and moved my couch. Rearranging at moving time might seem weird, but you don't want to start piling boxes in a corner that will take a maze like path to get to when trying to load a moving truck.

2. Location of Boxes:
Are you moving all at once? Or a bit at a time? This matters. If you are moving in several trips the location of your boxes is everything. Make sure you have your most needed essential items ready to go for the first day of moving. Then leave some items you can live without for a few days behind for your other trips.

3. Find a Happy Balance:
Between what you ask? Between packing and doing other house chores as you go. I get burnt out if I try packing for 8 hours straight. I just can't do it. So in between I take small breaks to get my cleaning in, laundry, or baking some cookies :)

These are very simple tips that I'm not the first to think of, but they serve as a small reminder that there is away to keep semi-organized during a disorganized time.