Thursday, June 27, 2013

My Attempt at Keeping Plant Life {Bromeliad Flower}

My husband and I were at Lowe's recently picking up some supplies for my "mini" pantry project and I always tend to gravitate toward the garden section. I have had this pot sitting on my patio porch for some time now...it was even on my previous porch at my old apartment.
I want to get a cute little plant to put in my pot and have sit on my porch. I even spent a good amount of time searching online for a plant that would thrive on my porch with little sunlight, but very humid weather. Every time I browse the garden section I never seem to end up getting a plant. I am fearful that I will kill it!

But this last trip to Lowe's was different. I found this exotic looking plant with amazing color!
I just had to have it.
I guess we will see if I can actually keep this plant alive or not. It is called a Bromeliad plant which I have never heard of.

Sorry for all the photos! Went a bit overboard here!





























Would love to see your flowers/plants/gardens! Send me a picture!

Cheers!

Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Beachy, Beach!

I gotta love Florida on beautiful days like the one we had on Saturday!
I have to admit that since summer in Florida actually began, I haven't been to the beach at all...
*pause for a gasp*
Sometimes I guess I take the beach, and living so close to it, for granted.
Shame on me!
Joey and I ventured out for a late afternoon stroll on the beach, and of course I had to bring my camera along.
I have been practicing taking photos in manual mode for some time now and every little bit of practice I can get helps.

So here is a little bit of our Florida for y'all!





























I hope you all enjoyed your weekend! Make sure, if you haven't already, enter my 100th Blog Post Giveaway (Click Here)! Giveaway is open until Thursday!

Cheers!

Thursday, June 20, 2013

100th BLOG POST GIVEAWAY!!!***CLOSED***


Yay! This is my 100th Blog Post on Young NASA Housewife! I wanted to show my appreciation to all my followers and readers by doing a little giveaway.
AND... what better to give away then some of my most talked about products on my blog!

The Winner Gets...!
A full sized pack of the Yes to Blueberries Facial Towelettes (Blog Post Here)
Essie Nail Polish in the color Tart Deco (Blog Post Here)
A Revlon Lip Butter in Creme Brulee (Blog Post Here)
Bigelow Plantation Mint Tea (Blog Post Here)
Nivea Lip Butter in Vanilla & Macadamia Kiss (Blog Post Here)

Giveaway Rules:
 Giveaway runs for ONE WEEK until Thursday, June 27, 2013 at 6 AM EST and is for the United States ONLY. There will be ONE winner! Giveaway is hosted with Rafflecopter and is really easy to use. Just follow the steps below. You must have parental permission if you are under the age of 18.

The winner will be announced on the giveaway widget and will be contacted.The winner must reply (as directed in post) within 48 hours or I will pick someone else...
Good luck!

How to Enter:
a Rafflecopter giveaway
If  Rafflecopter isn't working for you, you can still enter by doing the following:
1. Leave a blog post comment with a blog post idea that you would like to see.
2. Follow @youngnasawife on Twitter
3. Follow the Blog! Just click the Join Site over on this side ---->

***This blog post was NOT sponsored. All opinions are my own. Prizes for Giveaway were purchased by me***

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Thrifty Organization {Cord Management on a Budget}


I often tell my clients that organizing doesn't have to cost them a fortune; and that they can use simple items around the house to organize verses going out to buy a system.

Occasionally, I like to practice what I preach, so I thought I would share a thrifty way to organize cords/extension cords on a budget. Now I really enjoy the cord management systems that the Container Store has, but they can be a bit pricey if you only have a few cords to reign in.  The Martha Stewart line always has the mini cord ties with labels on them that work well too!
But lets say for this post that we don't want to spend any money.

Here's what you need!
Toilet Paper Rolls
 (as many as you want to create)
Scissors
Label Maker 
(or marker to label with)
Contact Paper
 (or wrapping paper if you don't have contact paper)
Extra Labels

So this little trick has been done before I'm sure. I can't be the only person to do this, especially because they are so easy.

Step One: Cover your toilet paper roll with contact paper. Or, like I mentioned, use a fun designed wrapping paper. You will need tape if you use wrapping paper. You can cover the whole role or cut out strips to wrap around it. Use your CREATIVITY!

Step Two: Decide how you want to label them. I used an Avery label for some extra color then popped a normal white label with black lettering on top of it. If you don't have a label maker, then you can use your marker to write it out OR print from your computer and tape on.

Step Three: Wrap your cord and push on through. Make sure it is tight enough so it holds.

What ways do you organize with items around your home?

(P.S. Next Blog Post is number 100! Giveaway is happening on THURSDAY! Check back to enter!)

Cheers!

Friday, June 14, 2013

Finding Your Voice in the Blogging World {3 Suggestions from a Small Blogger}


I have been in the blogging community a little over a year now. And while I have blogged on and off until recently establishing a schedule, I have spent numerous hours a week partaking in what most bloggers do; photographing, writing, editing, publishing, and promoting.
I am a small blogger. I have not made it big time.
I don't tell you this to deter you from reading this blog post, but if you are looking for those quick ways to increase traffic to your blog or make money with your blog posts type of read
then you are in the wrong place.

I absolutely love blogging! I find it to be an outlet/hobby that has grown to be a regular to-do in my schedule, and I wouldn't have it any other way.

I'm approaching my 100th Blog Post next week (make sure you check for the giveaway coming up) and I have done a bunch of reflecting and re-reading of my prior blog posts and it just got me thinking. While I'm not blogger pro or a famous blogger, I have learned from my blogging experience and I think there a hundreds of other small blogs out there that might need to read this as well.

Find Your Voice: Tip One- Stay Genuine. I wish blogger had a way to triple underline because it deserves to be read! While I struggled to find my blog niche so that people would read my blog I had a mini revelation; I wasn't being genuine. Not that I wasn't being myself, but I was blogging about topics for the wrong reasons. I thought well people want to hear about this so I will blog about it, even though I want to blog about something else. Now I'm not saying that you should disregard completely what your readers want to read. However, I have read several blogs where you just know the reader isn't really passionate about what they are blogging; but they think it will make them money or gain more followers. I believe that readers/followers can sense that. I know I could. So blog about what makes you happy. Stay true to what really interests you, stay genuine. I know my blog has bounced all over the place with makeup, DIY projects, Tips/Suggestions, recipes, etc. BUT that's ME! I enjoy all those things and just want to share with you all :)

Find Your Voice: Tip Two- Pick a Schedule. I didn't do this in the beginning and I think it hurt my blog a bit. I know as a reader of other blogs, if a blogger hadn't posted for a week or two I gave up checking their blog for new content-unless they specifically say they post once a month or something like that. I personally blog twice a week and post Tuesday and Friday (used to be Thursday...I found I needed more days in between). You don't have to state specific days, but if you let your readers know that you post once, twice, three times a week they will know when they can expect new content from you.

Find Your Voice: Tip Three- Watermark your Photos. If you are a blogger and take your own photos it is helpful to watermark them. Not so much because NO ONE else in the world can use them and they are MY photos; but it is more of a promoting tool. If you watermark your photos, when some is looking for photos on a search engine, or maybe someone  pinned your photo on Pinterest, readers can now know where the photo came form and check out your blog.

I hope these tips help. I don't claim to know it all and I have a ton to learn in the blogging world, but these are just some of my observations in my own little blogger world.

Cheers!

Tuesday, June 11, 2013

Preparing for Guests {5 Tips to go the Extra Mile}


I really enjoy hosting guests. Whether for dinner or a full blown vacation, I find joy in making my family and friends feel at home.
Besides the typical prep that you would normally do when a guest is arriving (and by that I mean cleaning and picking up), I like to go the extra mile with 5 other steps.
These tips mostly apply to overnight guests, but you can apply one or even more of these steps to best fit your home and family.

Tip One: Fresh Linens and Sheets- To some of you this may seem obvious, but more often than not hosts can over look this detail. I know in our guest room I have "never-used" sheets on the bed, but if someone were staying the night tonight I would STILL change the sheets. I love the feel of fresh sheets right out of the dryer with the lingering scent from the dryer sheets. I feel like replacing the sheets is a way to say 'I care'. Same for towels. I like to freshen up my towels in the wash and fluff them dry with a nice fresh scent.
Additional tip, if you know that your guest is prone to allergies OR if you are not sure at all...I recommend washing your guest's linens in Dreft (Dreft Laundry Detergent - 170 oz -110 load size-NEW BIGGER SIZE).

Tip Two: Welcome Tray- This is a small gesture that makes your guest feel welcomed. The picture of my guestroom tray is above. As you can see I have a small box of tissues for convenience, several beverage options (you can customize those options based on your guest), a glass for the beverage (add more for multiple people), a tiny treat of Godiva chocolate, and a simple quote by Aristotle. You can create your tray whichever way appeals to you. You know your guest the best! If you don't have a guest room to display a tray, try a welcome gift bag including some of the items I just mentioned.

Tip Three: Meal Planning- If you plan on cooking while your guests are in town, it would be my suggestion to plan your meals before hand. This is helpful for two reasons; first, you are able to stress less while your guests are in town because you already know what you are cooking. Second, this allows you to check with your guests about the meals. I'm not saying you have to send them a full fledged menu... I mean you want to surprise them with your cooking skills! All I'm saying is you can check to see if there are any special dietary needs and/or food allergies to be aware of. That way you don't prepare a meal your guest cannot eat.

Tip Four: Create a Sightseeing Book- If your guests are from out of town, they may not know all there is to do in the area. I find it thoughtful to put together a small book or binder of some things to do; especially if they might be venturing out on their own some days. Just pick up some brochures from local attractions, some menus from local restaurants you enjoy, and even a town event schedule for music and festivals. This doesn't have to be a huge book, we have the internet for that...just a few options for them to see where they might like to visit.

Tip Five: Plan Ahead at Work- Often when guests come into town for an extended stay we take off a few days to spend time with them...if we're lucky! There are some times we can't get away or take vacation. When this happens, simply plan ahead. Let your co-workers and boss know that you have guests arriving on this date; and while you will be at work throughout the week, you will be leaving promptly at close of business (or the end of your shift) and unable to answer calls outside of business hours because you will be entertaining.
Now...I know what you are thinking...' Yeah right Katrina! My boss could care less about my personal entertaining of guests...he'd call me if I was in the hospital to do work!'
I'm not saying tell your boss what you are doing and disregard the policies at work. All I am suggesting is if you can't take time off while your guests are in town, then if you plan ahead you could lessen your work load while they are here. Maybe you stay late the week before to get ahead on your work, or maybe it is as simple as talking to your boss about not working overtime that week. Whatever the case, your guests came to visit you, not your job.

Hope this helps give you some tips for hosting guests in your home!  I would love to hear how you get ready for guests! Tweet me a picture (@youngnasawife) or leave a comment below.

And for those wondering about the quote in my guest room...

Cheers!

Friday, June 7, 2013

How to Get Ready for Summer! {7 Things to Keep in Mind}



Who is ready for summer?! Well maybe it has already started for some of you, but I typically think the first week in June as the beginning. For some reason summer still gets me all giddy and excited like it did when school let out!
Part of this excitement is brought on from my getting ready for summer. Even the little things to get ready add to the anticipation.

The more I thought about it, the more I realized I get ready for summer the same way every year...hmmmmm.
Thought I would share how I get ready for summer with a few things to keep in mind!

One- Purchase anti-frizz spray.Yeppp. Not really exciting, but I know it is summer when I have to go out and buy more products to tame my hair. So if your hair is like mine, make sure you stock up on some anti-frizz solutions so you can continue looking fabulous during the summer months!

Two- NEW MUSIC! I never buy music off iTunes. I typically listen to Pandora, Spotify, or the radio; but...right before summer I ALWAYS purchase a few of my current favorite songs. I make a beach playlist for that year. Listening to that music just puts me in the summer mood.

Three- Hydrate. For me, getting ready in the summer is stocking up on water. ALL TYPES! Normal bottled water, flavored water, and even flavored, sparkling water (yeppp...livin' large). But in all seriousness, especially in Florida when I am out and about I can get crazy warm and need to hydrate. You might not even really notice it, but it is important to have fluids pumping through you at all times. Also, this remains to be budget friendly since you are not having to stop at stores all the time to quench your thirst.

Four- Lemons and Limes! So to go with the many gallons of water I drink during the summer, I like to switch it up a bit. You noticed the pictures above right? Well this is typical for me. When the lemons and limes start filling up our refrigerator we know that it is starting to be summer!

Five- Clearing the schedule. Have you done this yet? Yes...I still have all my chores and to-dos during the week, but I try really hard not to fill my extra time with projects and redecorating. I like to clear my extra time to read a good book on the beach or take extra walks with Rebel. So this tip to you would be...enjoy the extra time you have and enjoy the warm weather.

Six- Books! Tip 6 is to get a great book (or books...) to give you that relaxing journey throughout the summer! Whether it be fiction or non-fiction, a good book can make summer that much more fulfilling. Maybe read one of each. A good fiction book can be your enjoyment and a non-fiction to learn something new :)

Seven-Finally...S'MORES! At the beginning of summer I always stock up on s'mores materials! Nothing says summer to me better than a good s'more. I don't have a fire pit because I'm in a condo, but even a s'more made in the good ole' microwave can hit the spot!

Hopefully this gives you some tips to get in the summer mood!
What do y'all do to get ready for the summer?

Cheers!

Tuesday, June 4, 2013

How I Stay Organized {Project Binder}

The last blog post I did on How I Stay Organized involved focusing on personal and household management. In that blog post, I briefly mentioned doing another on some other aspects in my routine.
If you remember back to my weekly schedule (to read click here) I discussed that Fridays during the week are my project days and I have a completely different way to organize the current and future projects I want to work on.

It is nothing too fancy but it works for me; and if you're looking for a way to organize all your household DIY projects or renovations, this might just give you some tips on where to start.
Ultimately remember...it's whatever will help YOU stay organized!


My project binder consists of a 1" binder, some sheet protectors, blank white paper, post-its, and of course some fun colored markers.
That's it!
The purpose behind the binder is to store all my projects in one place. Additionally, the system I have works well because I am constantly changing my plan of action or even the order of my projects.
Lets start with the inside.
I picked a binder with two slip pockets in the front because I like to stagger my papers for easy access.
I keep blank white computer paper in the top slip. This is for any new projects that I need to begin brainstorming for. You will see this a bit later, but I simply write the title of the project across the top and start planning.
 You will notice this green/white stripped paper in the front here. This is a running list of some smaller projects that haven't really developed yet. I consider this a limbo project area. They aren't really current projects nor are they really future projects that I have a date to be finish by. They just are!
The last item in the front slip pocket is a large post-it note. I use post-its for just about everything! But in this project binder in particular, I use them to make shopping lists for each project and stick on each project's page. This way I have a running list of what I need as I brainstorm and sketch the project out. I can then just grab my post-it and head to the store.
Clipped in the binder part are just your average sheet protectors. Each project that I start to brainstorm gets put in one of these protectors. I like this because it is helpful to have the extra room to slip in swatches of paint, fabric, receipts if I need to possibly return something, and also any pictures of inspiration that I want to use for the project. That way it is all kept together with that specific project and I don't have all of it floating around.

Also, I order my projects in order from my current project and then future projects in order of priority. It is helpful to have everything housed in one sheet protector packet when I want to move a project ahead of others.
This is my laundry project page. It is the most current project that I'm focused on, as of right now. Hence why it is first in the binder. I don't plan the same for each project, but here is what you will find on this project page.
Project Title
Sketch of the Project (not always applicable)
To-Do for the Project (this is a list of project goals)
Due Date for when I would like the project accomplished.

Like I said, this varies per project but this is roughly what you will see on each project page.

This is super simple, but very affective at keeping all my projects organized and up to date. I love having one binder to pull out when I want to work on something or have a new project idea. I hope this helps you in some small way :)
Let me know how you organize your projects!

Cheers!