The Never-ending Journey of Budgeting

With the new year comes many resolutions that cover a variety of topics. From weight loss to organization…to eating better or quitting bad habits; every where you look there are people who are determined to make their life better once and for all! My husband and I did not make resolutions this year, rather we shared what we would like to see happen in 2015. Our discussion included finding more time to truly relax, making an effort to be healthier (eating better and exercising more), trying to be present in our interactions with others (aka put down the electronics), and a lot about money.


Budgeting seems to be a never-ending mountain that we are climbing; there are some months where we do great and others where we completely botch our plan and then continue to botch it for a few months before we wake up and realize we are totally off course. It’s awful, and it seems to keep happening. With a new baby coming this year, Continue reading “The Never-ending Journey of Budgeting”

DIY Gifts For The Whole Family

When it comes to Christmas, I am all about making gifts for my friends and family. Not only do I like saving the money, but I also like to make their gifts extra special and personalized. For those of you new to the DIY scene, do not fear; there are so many gifts that are super simple to make. Today I will share just a sampling of my favorites, but definitely search on Pinterest for more ideas (just a warning: you will most likely get more results than you ever dreamed of and therefore want to make them all).


Continue reading “DIY Gifts For The Whole Family”

Easy Thanksgiving Decor on a Budget

If you’re like me, you’re always looking for inexpensive ways to decorate your house, especially when the holidays roll around. Every year since I’ve have been married, I have wanted to decorate for every holiday, but mainly Fall/Thanksgiving and Christmas. I’m ashamed to say I’ve utterly failed in that department. Until last year, that is.

This year is my first “stay at home mommy” holiday season and I’m so excited! If only you could see inside my head – it’s filled with ideas for pretty much every area in my life (or room in the house that is) and I know I will never have the time or money to make my imagination a reality. A girl can dream, right?


Continue reading “Easy Thanksgiving Decor on a Budget”

DIY Table Settings: A Little Effort Goes a Long Way

We have all seen place cards set out on elaborately decorated tables..Are they only for weddings? I think not! Not only do place cards direct guests to their seats, but have the ability (when done correctly) to dress up a table and encourage conversation. What better time to do that, but at holiday gatherings?

Table Dressage

Traditionally, Thanksgiving tables consist of heaping bowls of potatoes, cranberries, pies and, of course, a giant golden turkey. There is something to be said about elevating the experience for guests beyond just the intake of scrumptious dishes. For the past few years, I have been mildly obsessed with creating unique place cards for the Thanksgiving table. The first year, paint card samples, buttons, and flourishing handwriting were utilized. Another year, I made mini pumpkin pies (think Quiche size) and toothpick flags with names printed on them.

This year's place card setting.
Mason jar place settings are perfect for dressing up a traditional Thanksgiving feast.

This year, we have a larger table to set, and we will have little ones with us as well. My vision included wanting a vintage/rustic theme. Thanks to 50 percent off mason jar shot glasses and some mason jar packaged moonshine, my vision came together quite nicely. I’m quite pleased with the direction the place cards will take our Thanksgiving. Please note, the “little ones” mentioned above will be receiving place cards tied on Frozen and Minnie Mouse lip glosses – it’s important to cater these place cards to your audience, after all!

Conversational Atmosphere

The moonshine filled mason jars will no doubt be a visual focal piece on the table. They will,  at the very least, encourage conversation, as their contents is surely a surprise. With place cards, there is the unique opportunity to invite individuals to sit next to one another that might not have naturally gravitated towards each other. This can make or break conversation. My advice would be to place people near one another that may have similar interests or are good at striking up and maintaining conversation with others.

Place cards do not need to be dull and stuffy; dressing a table is an opportunity to let creativity flow and to serve as support to a greater experience through the atmosphere for your guests!

How do you dress up your table for holidays?

Thankful Children

It’s November! Holy moly where did this year go? November in our house is big because we have Hank’s birthday (my baby is 1) and Thanksgiving (Steven’s favorite holiday). We are particularly excited about Thanksgiving this year because we have family coming out from Indiana and some of our closest friends are back from Japan and will get to come spend it with us too!

In the midst of all the excitement, one thing that has become increasingly important to me is teaching my children to be thankful. I like to do this all year-long but for the past few years I have tried to be very intentional about it in November. Teaching children to be grateful for the things they have is extremely important. We don’t want to raise children that cannot appreciate the blessings in their life.

I have mentioned before I am not crafty, but I have found that crafts are often a good way to get the girls to be involved and engaged in hands on activities. Continue reading “Thankful Children”

Ladybug, Fly Away Home: DIY Toddler Costume

I’m not a big Halloween fan, however if we have an event that we are attending, I definitely jump into “DIY costume” mode. Two years ago, I was pregnant with our daughter and my hubby and I attended a party as Chuck (Tom Hanks) and Wilson from the movie Cast Away. My hubby just needed tattered clothes and I drew a volleyball on my t-shirt and my belly was the volleyball! Simple, yet fun.lylaladybug

This year, it was a Halloween walk through a local historical village and since it would be dark out anyways, us “old farts” didn’t get into costume, but I definitely wanted something sweet for our little one to wear! We love to read books in our house and she has grown to love the series of “Ladybug Girl”. It’s about a girl who dresses up as a ladybug and plays with her friends in the “Bug Squad.” Cute book with fun pictures, and she just loves it (especially “bumbabee boy”, as she likes to call the little boy character). Continue reading “Ladybug, Fly Away Home: DIY Toddler Costume”

My Inner Girly-Girl Has Emerged

So, I’m not your typical “girly girl.” THAT would be my sisters. I like to shop, but not with my sisters because they are like shopaholic crazy girls. They always make sure their hair is in place, their nails look pretty, they have great accessories etc etc. Even though I am the only sister with a child, it has always been this way. I would paint my nails here and there but I hated nail polish because I would always mess it up the same day I did my nails and would get head aches from the smells. But then one day, I discovered an alternative and I haven’t looked back.

About a month ago, Erica (none other than the Erica who started this blog), told me about a business opportunity. She is always on the look out for ways I can make money at home to help supplement my husband’s paycheck (isn’t she the bestest friend ever?), and said that this was something that I might be interested in. She normally wouldn’t suggest companies like this, but she personally knew a few people who were doing really well. I said, “TELL ME MORE.” I got in touch with one of her friends and signed up a few days later, even before I tried out the product! What is the company? JAMBERRY!

Jamwontchip1If you haven’t heard of it before, let me give you the low down. Jamberry Nail Wraps are a new and innovative way to avoid nail polish drying time, chipping and pricey visits to the salon. They are a DIY DREAM. They come in over 300+ designs, last up to 2 weeks on fingernails, 6 weeks on toenails and WILL NOT CHIP. They are a vinyl adhesive wrap that is heat activated and pressure sealed to the nail. They will NOT damage your nail when removed properly and are so much fun! You can use them over acrylics or gels or even nail polish Jammom&me(some wraps have a clear background with a design), making them very versatile! Jamberry also has a Jamberry Junior line that has wraps for girls up to age 8 (Can I get an “Amen” from the mommas?). Pretty much the best idea since sliced bread. When I heard about them I was hooked immediately.  And they always have the buy 3, get 1 free sale going too!Jamb3g1blacks

From the company side of things, Jamberry is just as awesome! I have only been at it for a month and have already seen the amazing support from Home Office as well as the camaraderie among the consultants. Everyone super helpful and wants to help the newbies get going. The commission and bonus plan is also awesome! Much better than other direct sales companies I have looked into before, for sure! If you want to see where the company started and a little more about what goes on behind the scenes, definitely check out this video:



JammintgoldstripevintagechicduoThese are my current nails, mint green with gold stripe paired with vintage chic. I love it! Not too flashy but also very unique! Jamberry has only been around since 2010, and a direct sales company since 2012, so a lot of people still don’t know about the company so I get a lot of comments wherever I go!

Want to find some designs for yourself? Head over to to browse the 300+ designs! But be warned, they can be addicting! Also, we are phasing out over half of our designs on August 31st to get ready for the new designs arriving Sept 1, so be sure to look at the GOING GOING GONE section too! One more thing before I go, I am hosting a GIVEAWAY! For each action you complete, you will get one entry into the drawing but if you place an order you will get 5 entries! On Sept 1st I will draw a winner who will receive a half sheet of nail wraps! Thanks for reading!

What’s your biggest pet peeve about your nails/getting them done etc? Too pricey at the salons? Polish too messy? Tell us in the comments below!

**Congrats to Amy Huffmaster for winning the half sheet of nail wraps!!! Thank you to everyone who participated!!! :)*** 

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