My Take on Paleo

High fives for short weeks!  I have been spoiled the last three weeks with short weeks, but I had to take the last of my days off for the year and this is how they ended up.  The first week of December is going to be frustrating being a full week.

I am going to be pretty honest here today.  Ready?

I am miserable.  Miserable with the way I feel and look.  Honestly, it is my own stinking fault.  I am a human vacuum when it comes to food and I have no pause button.  I am always hungry and never making the right choices.  What irritates me the most is I KNOW BETTER.  I know while I am shoving ice cream in my mouth that I probably should have chosen something that isnt ALL THE CALORIES.  When I go out to eat, I find myself choosing even worse.

Thus bringing on misery.  Im not running anymore because something in my body just wont agree.  I haven’t lost my love for it, I just need a time out from it and the pressure I felt to do it.  Im not biking at the moment because we moved offices that are much further out.  The gym I WAS a member of was nothing but ridiculousness and I am in search of a new, closer place.  But all this over time started infesting my head and I was constantly putting myself down.  I couldn’t stop looking in the mirror and poking/prodding at what I did.  This is the biggest I have ever been in recorded history.  I hated it and I hated myself for letting it happen.

A few weeks ago I decided I wanted to take charge of this and get back to feeling normal again, but how?  I toyed with joining Weight Watchers again, but after I started reading experiences on doing the WW system (and my own successful and failed attempts), I started thinking it wasn’t right for me at this point in my life.  I dont want to track things and I dont want to be on a system that charges your a lot of points to use olive oil (the only oil we cook with).  I felt frustrated.

I was on a work trip two weeks ago and started talking to one of my coworkers who did Paleo.  We toyed with trying a Paleo lifestyle (note lifestyle and not diet) but had no idea where to start.  I started doing some research and pinning and decided it probably wasn’t as hard as I made it out to be.  We decided to try it for two weeks and see how we and our bodies liked it (and we couldn’t give up Thanksgiving).  I knew it would be something that Matt would like since he is intolerant to gluten.

Here we are after week one and here are my thoughts:

  • I did menu planning for the first week and gave Matt the reins for week two.  I hate menu planning.  It is a lot of work and I felt somewhat annoyed, so by the end of the week we were freestyling.  I know Matt did well keeping track and I think I did a really good job.  I was fairly strick week one.  On Sunday I did drink 25% of a Coke Zero, but that was it.
  • I tried to cook for most of the week on Sunday and that was a lot of work I never want to do again.  I was worried breakfast was going to be so hard because cereal is my go to, so I figured I would prep as much as I could then.  I think it is better to prep things like potatoes early on for breakfast and reheat versus making the entire breakfast.  There is something about reheated eggs…..
  • Lunches and dinners were pretty easy (esp lunches since I made enough dinner for leftovers).  We ventured into unchartered territories by making cauliflower rice instead of rice or pasta.  We also found ourselves liking spaghetti squash.
  • Our sweet tooth was more mellow this week, but it was still there.  Dark chocolate is not something I prefer, but it does get the job done.
  • Nuts.  We had a huge variety of nuts and seeds in our house and I felt like that helped a lot with snacking.

Physically and mentally there were changes:

  • I find myself not hungry all the time.  I can skip my allotted 10am and 3pm snack times and not stress about it.  10am is a lot easier to skip though.
  • I find myself getting fuller faster.  This makes for more leftovers at lunch.
  • Not a single day this week did I once hate a thing about myself.  I felt better.  Honestly, I felt like I had lost 10 pounds.  I only lost two, but I LOST.  I FEEL slimmer.

The not so pretty things:

  • I dont know if my body is just trying to adjust, or if it truly needs certain things that I am missing out on, but my tummy has been acting the same way Matt’s does after he eats gluten.  I don’t feel this way after every meal, but towards the end of the week I was sucking.  Maybe I overdid it with too many proteins at one meal or maybe my body is in shock, but I was using the bathroom a lot this weekend.  TMI

Here are some of the dishes we made this week and the link to where I found them:  (hooray for crappy cell phone pics)20141116_083512

Simple eggs, avocado, and apple slices.  This surprisingly left me feeling full through lunch.  20141116_120518The recipe for this is a Tuna wrap, but I do not like fish, so I used chicken instead.  Here is the recipe TUNA AVOCADO LETTUCE WRAP

20141116_134302BREAKFAST SWEET POTATO HASH.  Pretty easy to make and pretty darn good.  I made enough for four days and they were nice sized portions. 20141116_192022Roasted chicken legs, CAULIFLOWER RICE, and ROASTED ASPARAGUS AND RADISHES.  I wasn’t a fan of this version of cauliflower rice, but I did make it later in the week with an Asian flavor and liked it much better.20141117_190731This one was my favorite.  It was BACON, AVOCADO, ARUGULA FLATBREAD.  First, the flatbread is so simple to make Paleo if you have the right ingredients.  We added prosciutto and a few drops of balsamic vinegar to this recipe and it was hands down one of the best tasting dishes I have made in a long time.

Snacks have been semi simple:  Nuts, hardboiled eggs, dried and fresh fruit, veggies, and seeds.  We have also enjoyed drinking almond milk in the regular, chocolate, and vanilla flavors.

How we are going to tackle week two:

  • Well it is Thanksgiving.  I am going to limit the amount of gluten I eat, but not restrict myself.  Especially not on dessert….I’m baking after all!!
  • Just to see how my tummy reacts this week we have introduced limited dairy and some  starches.  Yesterday my tummy was acting fierce so I let myself have some corn tortilla chips and pop for the bubbles.
  • The dairy will remain cheese only and in small amounts.  I never had the intention of doing this super strict so I do not want to limit myself from things I love, only reduce my intake.
  • Potatoes.  I am sort of on the fence on why you are not allowed to have them, so I am going to keep them in my diet on a healthy scale.  Im not going to run out and get french fries everyday, but if I feel like I need to eat some roasted taters that aren’t sweet, I am going to eat them.

My go to website through all this is Paleo Grubs.  There are TONS of recipes listed on the site and they are all super simple to make.  I may try to bake something this week with the almond flour we have.

Here is to week two!!

Categories: Food, Healthy eating | 2 Comments

Chunky, Floating Shelves

Between here and my post on Hometalk, everyone was so sweet about our laundry room.  I am actually impressed myself I was able to pull it off.  I must say one of my favorite new home improvement tools I used during this flip…..paintable caulk.  I know, weird, but seriously it is something amazing.  I read a lot of home improvement/decorating blogs and I have heard about it, but never used it myself.  When my mom and I were hanging the cabinets she suggested I use PC on the front doors to clean up the look.  TOTAL GAME CHANGER!  I may have been going through the house looking at things that need to be caulked after that!!!

So I figured I would share some of the smaller projects in the laundry room, starting with the last one I did.

I could have taken the easy way to build shelves in this space.  But I sort of wanted the wow factor of chunky shelves.  I knew there would be no way I would be able to hang true chunky blocks of wood on the wall, so I searched for a tutorial to tell me what to do.  I was surprised to find quite a few people have tackled this shelving, so dont worry if you dont like a certain tutorial.

The cabinets hanging in the LR are 30″ tall, so after drawing out plan after plan, I figured I could easily get away with three shelves in this space and I would be pretty even with the top and bottom.  I planned for 3-4″ tall x 30″ long shelves that were spaced approx 11″ apart and 12″ wide.

Before we go any further, you must know….building things is still new to me and I pretty much suck. 

Now that we have cleared the air….

Here is what my cut list looked like:


Another thing to note that this rookie learned the hard way…..I wanted my shelves to be 4″ tall and grabbed two 1×4′s, stained them, cut them down, and when I went to glue them on, I noticed they are actually 3/4″ x 3.5″.  I was not happy and probably looked like a total idiot when I complained to everyone that knows how it really is.

The easiest part was building the frame20141109_104848I did not stain these since they are going to be on the inside of the actual shelf and no one will see them.  Obviously your cuts will not be the same as mine, but I cut all the frames with:

3- 30″ boards for the back supports
4- 10″ boards for the center and side supports for each shelf (12 total)


I predrilled my screw holes on the back board just to make my life easier since I was doing this alone.  I used some wood screws I had laying around the house from other projects, but I made sure to use 2″ long screws on the exterior boards in case it offered extra support.

Once all three frames were built. I brought them in and started hanging them up.  Here is where the project manager (who was sleeping during this construction) and I disagreed.  He suggested this would have been easier to build if I had it assembled prior to hanging on the wall.  You will see why in a second, but that was not possible.  What I DO suggest is going ahead and screwing the bottoms onto the frame.  It makes it a little heavier, but it saves you a frustrating step.


20141109_111146I spaced my shelves distance from the bottom of the bottom shelf to the bottom of the next shelf and again for the top shelf.  You can tell in the pictures there is a smaller gap in between the top two shelves and that is ok.


Now that the framework is up, it is time to add the top and bottom pieces.  I used my 1x12s for this portion and they fit like a glove.  I started out by staining them with five coats of Special Walnut stain.  I have a special place in my heart for that color.  It isnt overwhelming of a color and still has that rustic feel to it.


20141109_095017Once your stain is dried (or almost dry because you are impatient like me) cut the boards to your dream size and get to attaching.  The bottoms were challenging since the frame was up, so you have to screw them in upside down.  I used four screws on each bottom and placed them based on what looked like a good spot.  There might have been a little sagging action that needed to be addressed or too much of a gap that needed to be closed was how I made this decision (I told you I dont build things).

For the tops, I used some wood glue so there were no visible screws.  Make sure to have something heavy to push the boards in place while they dry

20141109_125728And now you can see why fully assembling these before putting them on the wall would not work.  How are you supposed to get your arm and a drill in there?


Oh the fronts.  My total height of these shelves was 4″ exactly.  Remember earlier I said they did not make 4″ boards.  They SAY 4″, but it is all lies!  I had to go back to the store and kindly bat an eye and see if anyone would love me enough to rip a 6″ board down.  Nope.  No one would help me.  I asked three people and not a single one cared about my situation.  It irritated me because they have braces and guides for their saws, I dont.  So I bought the 1x6s and said I would just do it myself.

And that I did.  I wont lie, I was nervous.

I cut my board down the to 30″ length I needed and then measured out 4″ with a straight line.  Then I went VERY SLOW.  I let the saw tell me what to do somewhat, but when I started to get really nervous, I cut the piece in half so I wasn’t reaching awkwardly.20141114_134911There were some parts that had a wiggly edge, but they were so unnoticable.  Once those were cut, I slapped on five coats of Special Walnut stain and glued them to the fronts of the shelves.  I applied pressure for about three minutes to each one so the glue would hold.

20141114_164018And here they are in all their glory.  Sort of a pain in the butt, but I like how they turned out.

IMG_7765I love how it adds a darker element to the space, but adds so much extra storage.  I havent gotten around to actually putting anything in the baskets and cabinets, but it will happen.

Work It WednesdayThat DIY Party - autumnBy Stephanie LynnThe 36th Avenue

Categories: Decorating help, DIY, furniture, Home Decor | 2 Comments

The Laundry Room Flip

Sweet friends!  Time to scratch another project off my list and this one was done in record time.  WOO! If you are friends with me on Facebook and Instagram, this is so old news to you, but for everyone else, here is my quick laundry room flip

As soon as I finished our dining room, I noticed our lack of kitchen and tool storage was starting to really take it’s toll on this guy.  Sometimes it can be really cool to have a blank slate with creating your own storage, but when you have all the other things to do, it is overwhelming.  While I try to come up with a solution for the tools and get some storage in the kitchen, I could just see how the laundry room was really irritating me with its storage-less walls.

And the wall color bothered me.

The whole room bothered me and I do the laundry at home every week.

IMG_7757That one shelf of wire sexiness just wasn’t cutting it for us.  This is how the room looked most days with no rhyme or reason.  Annoying!

I jumped on Polyvore to see if I could come up with some inspiration for this tiny 5×6 space (that is also shared with the rather large water heater).  Here is what my inspiration looked like:

Laundry room

The first I did was buy a stencil for the wall.  I will write up posts with more in depth directions, so this is more like an overview.


We bought two cabinets for $5 each at our local Habitat for Humanity store and I repainted them because they were brown and had that funky smell to them.  You know what I am talking about.

I switched out our boob light to a hanging industrial light which was the hardest thing EVER and one Saturday my mom came over to help me paint/stencil/hang cabinets.  Once everything was up and we were reassured they weren’t going to fall off the wall, I built and installed the wooden shelves.  More on all this later.  Now let’s look at the loveiness:







IMG_7776I will admit this, I enjoy my time in there a little more.  I dont enjoy doing laundry anymore than I did before, but at least it is in a pretty room.  It is so much brighter and cheerful in there. Plus doing this got me to move everything out of the room to clean the floors and clean out the dryer vent/tube. Just by cleaning it out and cutting it down a little, my dryer is much more powerful. Who knew? Oh and I am also probably preventing fires. Good call.


Paint:  Valspar White / Behr Sea Salt for the stencil/ Valspar Cream Delight in Semigloss for the Cabinets
Stencil: Cutting Edge Stencil
Cabinets: Habitat for Humanity Restore
Shelves: Built by me. Post coming soon
Light: Home Depot
Potted plants: IKEA
Yellow Boxes: IKEA
Baskets: Home Goods
Jar of spools: Jar-had from wedding / Spools-Michaels
Broom rod: IKEA

So what do you think? I will have a post with more details on the shelves and whatever else I took pictures of!

Upcycled TreasuresThat DIY Party - autumnBy Stephanie LynnThe 36th Avenue


TDC Before and After
Categories: Decorating help, DIY, furniture, Home Decor | 12 Comments

Phase 2 Complete: The Laundry Room

I considered naming this the Laundry Room Saga, but we haven’t gotten that dramatic….yet.

This project is on a very strict timeline because I want it done and I have one last project of the year behind it that I am just DYING to start.

This weekend I took Halloween off (because it is like Christmas to me) and I needed it.  Plus, projects are not getting done during the week with all the signs I have been making.

Here are the phases to keep me in check and keep this project moving:

Phase one: Install a new light fixtureIMG_20141101_122742I figured, why not get the easiest project out of the way since I am a total ceiling fan installation expert.  I figured wrong, friends, WRONG!  This was the hardest thing I could do and I said many MANY of curse words trying to get it up.  Why must they make it so complicated?  Maybe it wasn’t complicated to most people that bought this light, but according to the few people that I sent texts to cursing this light, lights are harder to install than fans.  I am going to stick to what I know (which I guess I know how to do this now).  At least it looks cool.

Phase two: Repaint cabinets

2014-11-02 17.58.23I was ready to pull the trigger on buying similar cabinets for $92.00 each from Lowes in white, but Matt convinced me to hit Habitat ReStore and see what they had.  These were just sitting there ASKING to be taken home for a cool $5 each.  One thing I will say….white is a tough color to paint.  I see some of the imperfections.  I did a quick prime and then two coats of paint/primer on top of that.  I bought new handles and spray painted the hinges silver so I didnt have to buy new ones.  Cheapness at it’s best.

Phase three:  Paint paint paint

IMG_20141102_113730I’m going to stencil again.  I really liked the way my guest room wall turned out and I love to hear how professional it looks, so why not do that in my laundry room….the room no one goes into :)  I plan on painting the tiny space white and then my mom is going to bring some left over paint she has to paint the stencil.  It is a color similar to what you see in the picture.  Pretty excited about this part.

Phase four: Hang cabinets, build/hang shelves, and accessorize.

Hopefully some of this will be completed next weekend and the weekend after is the finishing touches.  Looking pretty close to my inspiration!

Laundry room

Categories: Decorating help, DIY, Home Decor | Leave a comment

Quick Laundry Room Project?

My poor home office is feeling neglected.  I promised to work on it next, but in reality, I am going to work on the laundry room.  This family is in DESPERATE need of storage.  Again, I am so bummed the builders went slack on storage and small custom touches in this house.

But of all things, storage?!  Ugh!

So here is our laundry room right now.  Nope, I didn’t clean it up because I want you all to see just how much our storage situation sucks!  Everything lives on the floor there and it is so hard to utilize the shelf.  Plus, these before pictures will make the after look just that awesome!

This room is tiny and there is a lot going on in it.  It measures 5′ x 6.5′ and houses the washer dryer and the hot water heater.






It is a small space to do much in.  Luckily it is tall.  Very tall.  And I will use that to my advantage.

I want this to be a pretty quick and easy project and something I can finish in the next two weekends.  No reason for the time line other than I just want it to be done.

I was playing around online the other night and created some inspiration for this tiny space:


Laundry room

I don’t plan to follow this to a T, but I needed it to give me an idea of what I wanted to do…..mainly with storage.  I was pretty much ready to pull the trigger on buying two wall cabinets I found and Lowes, but Matt convinced me (not that it took much) to head over to our local Habitat Restore and see if there were any wall cabinets there.  And to my luck, there were two perfect sized cabinets that just need a paint job waiting for me for $5 each.  STOP IT!

You know my love for all things rustic, so instead of trying to find chunky shelves like I have pictured, I am going to follow this tutorial from  Desert Domicile and try to make something similar for probably much cheaper.

As far as the walls go, it is a tiny, dark space, so I am going to paint the walls white and add a feature wall.  I do love the herringbone look mainly for it’s simplicity, so I may toy with something like that for behind the washer/dryer.  I considered for .02 doing tile, but I have never tiled before nor do I have the tools.  #investmentIdontwanttomake

I actually scored a pretty sweet industrial light yesterday while I was at Home Depot.  It doesn’t look quite like what I have pictured, but it has the same feel and was only $30!   Budget people!  Budget!

Accessories are something I am going to try to purchase next weekend.  I took Halloween off because in my family Halloween is pretty much Christmas.  A big deal.  Only I am just getting started, so my decorations are still pretty rookie.  I digress.

And that water heater?  Well, unless the price of tankless water heaters goes way down and we could sell this one, I don’t see that changing anytime soon.  But at least it would feel much more spacious with vertical storage!!

So there are the plans for what will hopefully be a quick project.  Cross your fingers for a quick project!

Now off to fold that basket of whites before I go to work (last weekend to work for the year!!!)

Categories: budget, cleaning, Decorating help, DIY, Home Decor | 1 Comment

Finally – A Dining Room that Matches

So about this space.  Yeah, umm, I think I mentioned here that I was going to start working on it AFTER I finished the living room ohhhh about a year ago.  I don’t know how this space got so neglected.

Oh wait, yes I do.  I had a hard time deciding what I wanted to do.  It is best for me to just move along when I have that issue because I may end up making the wrong decision.

After many discussions on how I was not getting the dining room done….quick enough, I took the time after finishing the guest room and enjoying what little summer I am allowed with my job to get the dining room complete.  I mean, it IS the second room of the house you see when you walk in.

Here is what we started with a year ago:


Just looking at this picture seems so crazy.  Both spaces are SO different now.



I will admit, the table is VERY large for the space.  There is also only two of us to eat at such a large table, but it was a gift from my mom and we do love it.

Here is where we were just about three weeks ago (I told you, I HAD to get it done!)



I had the two white chairs from two former projects, the two black chairs came from my mom’s basement, the brown chair near us came from a garage sale, and the bench under the window came from Craigslist.  I knew if I kept these chairs looking like this for too long, I would have a lot of explaining to do.

I had a hard time deciding if I wanted blue/teal chairs or mustard yellow chairs.  In the end I obviously chose blue mainly because our tv stand in the living room is teal.  The color I chose was Valspar’s Spa Pool.

I took the easiest chair to start working on, but this time I didn’t take the easy way out and just use liquid deglosser.  I sanded it down to the natural wood and threw a coat of paint on it.  The actual color was somewhat bright and you all know how safety Sally I am about colors.  After dreading the idea of picking out another color, I decided to rough the chair up and throw on a layer of Special Walnut stain from Minwax to tone the color down.  Yes, yes this did the trick.  I learned from the first time to NOT use a wax to protect the wood (it got really dirty) but to use a poly.



I did the same with the other white chair I painted and actually recovered the cushion with painters tarp from Lowes.  You can’t beat $5!



The other chairs I did the same thing except with the cane chair I scored for $10, I painted the cane white.  Some of the cane on the seat is broken and the cushion is missing (because I am fighting with my sewing machine), so that is a lingering project.





For the black chairs, I just ordered linen colored slipcovers from Target and called it a day.  I originally ordered slipcovers from Home Decorators Collection, but I have been burned twice from them and refuse to try again.  I ordered slipcovers for these chairs after Thanksgiving last year because they were on crazy sale, but the item kept getting backordered.  I ended up canceling the order because it was pushed to Feb with no delivery in sight.  I figured this was because it was the holidays and that happens.  I tried to order the same slipcovers in Sept and have yet to see them.  They keep getting pushed into backorder.  I canceled the order (but have yet to see my refund) and have to wonder why HDC would keep a vendor like this on their website.  They cannot produce!







I pretty much love it!  It is so much brighter!

What’s left?  I may or may not try to find a rug.  The problem with a rug is the grass in the yard is in horrible shape, so the dog brings in a lot of mud.

The next thing is we need some reds and oranges in there, so I’d like to find something for the walls and maybe a table runner.

The last thing is a new light.  Nothing is wrong with this light, but it is so builder basic.  It makes me sad when we snoop at all the new houses they are building in our neighborhood because the builders used such special touches (salvaged doors, planked walls, awesome lighting) and our house is just basic.  Lights are so expensive, so I guess this is the lowest on the list of things to do.

Now, who is coming over for dinner?

Upcycled Treasures
ABFOL One Project at a TimeDIY on the Cheap
workitwednesdaycoverThat DIY Party - autumn
The Idea Room
Categories: Decorating help, DIY, furniture, Home Decor | 5 Comments

Creating a Glam Office

I am on the down swing of shows on my calendar this year.  I.CANNOT.WAIT!  This year at work has been a doozey and I have a feeling the first half of next year is going to be the same.

Next week when the show I just opened today closes, they are going to be tearing down our offices to replace carpet in the building.  I am actually pretty happy about this because our offices are horrible right now.  HORRIBLE.  Aside from the fact that we do not have heat or AC, our walls are black and it is dark.  I like to call this place the haunted house.

We actually have REAL offices, but are not allowed to use them (long story).  We also had REAL offices here at our current location, but they were torn down and we have to use our temporary walls instead….for the last almost four years.  Basically we work in a glorified cube where you can hear your neighbors think and any noise out in the hall from workers/freight/cleaning people/etc.

Since we are tearing the walls down, I suggested that we reconfigure the office to a better layout so it is less maze-y and makes more sense.  The response was teeth sucking so I requested we at least have WHITE walls in our space so it is a little less dungeon like.  Now that I am getting my way (heh), I have been pinning ways to make my office more me.  I am here 50+ hours a week, so it should be more comfortable.  Here is my inspiration and here is my Pinterest board for the occasion (I have a thing for gold right now):

Office Space

This was my vision for the office at home, but since I DO share the space with a boy, it might be a little too much for his tastes.  I have a lot of display space with my desk, the hutch behind me and a table.  I can add any table we have in our office to mine if I need the extra space, but I might try to nix it.  I havent decided.  The key to this update is it has to be quick, easy, and cheap.  All of my money is tied up to finishing our dining room right now (ALMOST there).  Plus, when I leave or am fired, I want it to be easy to take everything with me.

I may have to make a sign for the walls too (and something to post in the shop).  Maybe an H?

What is your favorite office accessory? 

Categories: budget, Decorating help, DIY | 1 Comment

September Birchbox

Hi All!  My posts haven’t been full of really what is up, but that is mainly because I am working on 100 projects right now and they all are in the “we aren’t ready to be posted” phase.  I am pretty excited to share with you.

Another project I am working on that I have already made the annoucement for is my little corner of Etsy that I took over.  I created a shop called the Southern Sign Shop.  I am still creating signs to fill up my space, but it is getting there.  I have been working on my logo and now that it is complete, I have a Facebook page and Instagram.  Totally legit!

Please follow along!  I also have a sidebar widget that updates this page as I update the shop’s page.

Anywho, onto my September Birchbox.  September seemed to be all about face products and I wasn’t THAT excited about it.  My sister seemed to make out like a bandit with her September box.  Makeup, nailpolish, all the good things.  I actually got my October box only to see there was MORE lotion and face cream, so I had to change the settings on my account.  I have more than enough of all these things.

So here is what September looked like:


1. Catherine Malandrino fragrance.  This fragrance was something I probably would have never chosen for myself and I have no idea why.  I loved it.  It didn’t last very long though, so I am sad panda at the moment.  It was a little muskier maybe than the scent I had last month.  Maybe moodier is a better way to describe it?  It wasn’t musky at all.

2. Liz Earle.  This is facial cleanser that comes with a cloth so you can get your exfoliation going.  I liked using it and still have a lot left to use again.

3. Perlier Shea Butter.  I was sent lotion the last box so if I had to compare, I liked the shea butter better.  (Spoiler alert: I liked the lotion they sent for October even better).

4. Dr. Jart Pore Minimalist mask.  I tried this out after a shower and it was interesting.  It is a charcoal mask that is soaked in a spearmint serum (so it reminds me of Vicks…mmm) that you place on your face for 15 minutes.  When I put it on, I looked like a crazy person.  I had to leave it on for 15 minutes and I put it on right before dinner, so when I walked into the kitchen, I definitely freaked Matt out.  hahaha

IMG_20140928_182024(dont worry sickos…I am clothed in that picture).  So I put the mask on and I couldn’t make any movements.  It reminded me of wearing white strips on my teeth.  No movement allowed.

5. Cynthia Rowley Eye pencil.  This eye pencil glides on your eye so smoothly and the silver is nice for going out.  I wore it to a football game and it stayed on all night.

So that was my September box.  Ill share October’s if I my posting schedule doesn’t pick up.

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Guest Room Makeovers on a Budget

Well fall is in full swing here and so is our dining room makeover.  Can I get a FINALLY!?!  I promised the dining room it was going to have it’s makeover ohhh about a year ago.  Instead I skipped over it and started another room.  I am hoping I will be done in the next few weeks and can share it with you.  Let’s just say there is a lot of painting and sanding going down and I am saying “JUST TRUST ME” to Matt….a lot.

So while I was looking for dining room inspiration, I posted my guest room makeover over on Hometalk just because I wanted something to share.  Have you heard of Hometalk?  It is a great place to share ideas and answer home and garden questions you may have.  The first time I used it, I posted a picture of this plant that was growing on top of newly planted bushes.  I had a TON of responses on what it was and what I should do with it.  Everyone was so helpful!!  (And for the record, I transplanted the plant to a new location as some of my Hometalk friends suggested and it was the best thing for the plant.  It is thriving like crazy!)

I posted my guest room expecting a few negative comments, but not as many awesome comments as I got!  It was so nice and sort of reassuring that I did not make a crazy mistake painting my walls like that.  hahahaha

Since posting my room, I was asked to curate budget-friendly guest room makeovers!  Pretty exciting stuff!!  Check out some of my favorites:


Click the image to see these amazing projects!

So many great ideas out there and you know how I have to do allthethings on a budget!

Categories: Decorating help, DIY, Home Decor | Leave a comment

The Man Cave

Right now, our little house is pretty small to host a man cave for Mr.  All rooms we use, with the exception of the guest room, is shared space.  I have tried pretty hard to keep the rooms gender neutral and making sure he has had some say with what goes into each room (except the guest room and partially the dining room now….I will show you soon).  The one room I think he wishes he had was his own space to play in (dont all guys?).  Maybe in the next house we will have enough space for me to have my craft room and he will have his own man cave.

This week I was contacted by this company called Man Crates, Gifts for Men to come up with my own Man Cave Design.  First, have you heard of Man Crates, Gifts for Men?  It is a place to buy the men in your life gifts that are shipped to them in actual crates that need a crowbar to open.  Pretty manly, right?  Click on the link to take a look and see what you are going to buy the men in your life.  I will wait.

After I was asked to create a space, I started thinking about all the things Matt would like to see in our office (which will mostly be his space).  Here is what I came up with below:


Man Cave

Here is a breakdown of everything in the room: (and why have I not been using Polyvore before!!!)

The color of the wall is very masculine to me and actually VERY close to the color we are going to paint the office.  Aside from the 70″ tv Matt wishes he had in there, this space would be used for playing on the computer/watching movies/playing on XBOX.  I started with a recliner but figured a couch would be easier to have friends over and still stretch out to watch an episode of Breaking Bad on Netflix.

I am actually in search of a rug very similar to what you see here because he requested it for our office space.  Classy guy.

I thought the table was really unique and while I do not like glass top tables myself, I think it adds interest to the space and will clean easier!

Of course no man cave is complete without team coasters and drinks of some sort.  We are wannabe beer snobs and love trying new beers/learning about beers, so I thought a flight set would be the perfect gift for this space.

The walls must have some decoration and I think a rustic version of the American Flag and our favorite team art on the wall is perfect.

I have no idea if guys like throw pillows, but something is needed to break up that couch!  Two plaid pillows and an initial pillow is perfect and still manly man.

That was fun!  What would your man cave look like if you had to create one?

Thanks Man Crates for letting me play along.

Categories: Decorating help, Home Decor | 1 Comment