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6 Ways to Make Grocery Shopping Easier

Posted by Andie on May 28, 2018

Some people genuinely love grocery shopping, but I am not one of those people.  In fact, I loathe it!  I get a pit in my stomach when I open the fridge and realize that it's time to go buy more food.  I've realized over time though, that part of the reason I hate grocery shopping, is due to the fact that I haven't been very smart about it.  So, today I am sharing 6 effective ways to make grocery shopping SO much easier...

1. Meal Plan
Before you go to the store, the most important thing you need to do is plan out your meals for the next few days, or preferably week!  To be honest, I hate doing this, only second to grocery shopping itself!  But when I don't meal plan I always end up wandering around the grocery store and buying random things, only to need about twenty more ingredients throughout the week when I finally figure out what I'm making for dinner.  Do yourself a favor, and make a plan, and things will go much smoother.  Here is a free printable below to help:


via she saved

 

2. Make a detailed shopping list
This printable below takes making a shopping list to a whole new, easier level!  Everything is organized into aisles and departments.  Isn't this genius?  If you stick to a list like this, you won't be running around the store in circles, and instead, you'll only have to go down every aisle just once!  

 


via family maven

3. Leave kids home, if possible
Trust me, I get it.  Your children might be little angels in normal situations, but I'm convinced that every child turns into a monster at the grocery store (if you haven't witnessed this as a parent yet, just wait.  Your time will too come.)  Crazy children trying to jump out of the cart and begging for treats they know I'll never buy them at the grocery store is my jam!  I've done it a hundred times, and if there is ever a way for me to NOT take them to the store with me, I'm all over it.  If you can go shopping while your kids are at school, drop them off for a friend to watch, or wait until late at night or early on a Saturday morning when your souse is home and you can easily leave your kids home, do it!  If I'm alone at the grocery store, it takes about 90% of the usual stressfulness away.  

4. Eat before you shop
The worst idea ever (besides taking children with you to the store) is to go grocery shopping when you're hungry.  When I do this, I end up buying things that I don't even normally eat, or like for that matter, because I get a little delusional and just start tossing things on display in my cart.  That, or I'll end up eating half a can of Pringles before I even get to my car.  If nothing else, keep a snack in your purse that you can munch on while shopping to help you think clearly about your purchases.

5. Stick to your list.
Again, this is much easier to do if you aren't hungry.  You're on a mission, and that is to only buy items WRITTEN DOWN ON YOUR LIST!  This is so hard, but if you go determined, you can accomplish anything.  

6. ORDER YOUR GROCERIES!!!!!
This is by far my best piece of advice.  If you're like me, and you'd rather scrub toilets than go grocery shopping any day of the week, consider yourself blessed to live in 2018 and sign up for a grocery delivery service.  I paid $150 for free delivery for a year through Instacart (there are lots of companies that do this, Instacart just happens to be the one that services my area) and I can honestly say it has changed my life.  It takes me five minutes to order my groceries on my phone, and they are gauranteed to be at my house in less than two hours!  And the grocery delivery person even brings all of my bags inside and sets them right on my kitchen counter!  If that isn't magic, I don't know what is!  I've only been doing it for a couple of months, but it has been worth every penny.  Plus, I've saved tons of money because ordering my groceries means I don't impulse buy at the store!  

 

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Brazilian Limade Recipe

Posted by Andie on May 25, 2018

Happy Memorial Day, weekend!  I hope you are all BBQing and kicking off the start of summer right!  Today I want to share with you one of the most DELICIOUS drinks I've ever tasted!  We had this Brazillian Lemonade at a cinco de mayo party, and it pretty much changed my life.  Add it to your menu this weekend, and you'll thank me later!......

 

Brazillian Lemonade

8 cups water
3/4 cup sugar

Whisk sugar into water and set aside.

Blend the following ingredients together in your blender:
- Juice of 5-10 limes (depending on how limey you want this)
- zest of 5 limes
- a few cups of the sugar water
- 1/2 cup (or more depending on how sweet you like it) sweetened condensed milk.
- a couple handfuls of ice

Once blended, add mixture to remaining sugar water in a pitcher.  Add a few handfuls of ice, and throw in several lime slices for garnish.

Serve immediately!

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How to Organize Recipes

Posted by Alyssa on May 23, 2018

recipe

I don’t know about you, but once I figured out how to organize my recipes meal planning was significantly easier. My biggest problem was that I would find a recipe I would like, make it once, and never remember where I had found it. Finding a way to get organized took me a couple of tries, but I finally found a system that works for me! I thought I’d share the different things I tried and what ultimately worked below. 

How to Organize Recipes

recipe binder

via Kalyn Brooke

RECIPE BINDER(S) - If you like ripping recipes out of magazines then having a binder separated into categories will save you the pain of rifling through piles of paper each time you want to find a recipe. Start with one large binder, but if this works for you, you may end up with multiple binders for each category.

PINTEREST - This is one of the most popular ways to organize recipes. Create an account and you’ll be able to make a different board for each recipe type. You can get as detailed in your categories as you want and collect as many recipes as you would like.email

via Mel's Kitchen Cafe

GMAIL - Create files in your inbox to store recipes you find online in. Include a “To Make” file so that you’ll be able to remember recipes you’d like to try out. You’ll be able to keep things sorted neatly, and chances are you already are logged into your email at any given moment.

RECIPE BOX - This is actually what ultimately worked best for me! It was easy to find a space for a small recipe box and you can fit a whole lot of index cards in it. While it does require writing down recipes, I only write down recipes that the whole family enjoyed, which means I have a bunch of family-approved meals on hand.

 

How have you organized all your recipes?  

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Should I Build a New House, or Remodel?

Posted by Andie on May 22, 2018

Raise your hand if you love watching HGTV as much as I do!  Love it or List it, Fixer Upper, House Hunters....... I can't get enough.  Those shows always make finding/making the perfect home so effortless, but in real life it feels so much harder!  What does it take in real life to create your perfect home, anyway?  If you're trying to decide whether you should sell your home and build a new one from scratch, or remodel your existing home to make it everything you want, here's an extensive list of pro's and cons to help you determine which choice is best for you and your family....

 

Building a new house:

 


via pinterest

 

PRO'S:

- You get to pick the location of the home, and build exactly where you want to live!
- You get to design and build a unique space that has never been lived in by anybody else before!  
- You can get EXACTLY what you want!  Customization, customization, customization!
- New construction can easily incorporate the newest developments in building materials, technology, wiring, heating and cooling and communication systems, plumbing and other fixtures, and finish materials.
- New materials generally require less upkeep. Wisely chosen, they can be relatively maintenance free for years to come. 
- You don't have to live in the mess during construction!  You can stop by to check on things, and then go back to relax in a clean house afterwards. 

CONS:

- Costs for new construction are almost always higher than the costs of buying existing structures.  $$$$$$$
- Building a home usually (more like ALWAYS) takes much longer than anticipated.  This is super frustrating, especially if you are on a tight schedule as far as timing goes with moving out of your current residence.  
- Depending on where you live during construction, travel to and from the site can be time consuming.  
- Overseeing the project (even with a general contractor) can take a lot of time and energy.  The owner should be a part of the process to make sure the quality of the project is satisfactory.  

 

Remodeling your current home:

 


via pinterest

PRO'S:

- You don't have to uproot your entire life and relocate! This is a major reason why most people remodel.  If you love your neighborhood, friends, schools, proximity to shopping & entertainment, etc. then why move?!  
- Changes in an existing plan can take place one at a time, over a long time, with much less pressure to accomplish than new construction.  There is time to live with the idea, plan it out carefully, execute it how you'd like to, and control the size or scale of the project.  
- Remodels can be accomplished in stages or in parts of the structure and by various individuals or teams. 
- The cost may be less than that of new construction (depending on the extent of the remodel, who does the work, and how it is accomplished).
- The area to be remodeled may not dramatically affect living or working in the space.
- You get to keep the features of your home that you love, while upgrading the things that you don't!  This way, you can literally create your "perfect" home!

CONS:

- Living in the middle of a mess is pretty horrendous!!  It would help things if you could move out during the remodel, but that takes a lot of time, money, and planning!  

- Depending on what room is getting remodeled, you might not be able to use your kitchen for a while.  Hello, takeout!  Also, if bathrooms are getting remodeled, your whole family might have to share one bathroom for a period of time, which can get annoying.  
- Having subcontractors and workers in and out of your living space leaves you essentially no privacy.  Not to mention the loud noises!
- Removing walls sometimes brings big surprises!  (For example: hidden fireplaces, rotted floorboards, etc-- these types of things can add a lot of additional costs to the project in order to fix properly.)  
- Making decisions and being involved in the project takes a lot of time and energy, and can be stressful.

 

In the end, as long as you get the home you're aiming to create, you can't really go wrong.  But, in your experience, which do you prefer?  Building a new home, or remodeling your existing one?

 

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How to Edge a Lawn

Posted by Alyssa on May 21, 2018

lawn

Once you know how to edge a lawn your lawn, your yard will go from looking good to looking amazing! There is nothing better than a freshly mowed lawn, but no matter how good you are at maneuvering a lawn mower there’s no escaping those long pieces right next to the sidewalk. No matter how clean the rest of your lawn looks, if you don’t know how to edge your lawn you won’t have the pristine yard you want.   

How to Edge a Lawn

 

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Yellow Living Rooms

Posted by Alyssa on May 20, 2018

living room

Yellow is just the happiest, warmest color, don’t you think? So why not use yellow in your living room and make it a welcoming, joyful place to spend time? I have always loved yellow rooms, but it’s taken some convincing to get my husband on board. Fortunately, I’ve gotten him to give in a little bit here and there with some accent pieces. Still, I look at yellow living rooms and I dream about what could be. For some yellow living room inspiration, keep reading! 

Yellow Living Rooms

living room

via Better Homes and Gardens

SHOP THE LOOK! 

Similar end table and pillows here, here, and here

living room

via The Lux Pad

SHOP THE LOOK!

Similar coffee table and accent chairs here and here

living room

via Little Vintage Nest

SHOP THE LOOK!

Similar chairs here and here

living room

via Country Living

SHOP THE LOOK!

Similar sofacoffee table, and lamp

living room

via Cozy Little House

SHOP THE LOOK!

Similar coffee table here and here, and rug

 

Would you want a yellow living room? 

 

 

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Cute Bedroom Ideas

Posted by Alyssa on May 19, 2018

cute bedroom

If you’re looking to create a cute bedroom - a place you want to hang out, show off, and make completely your own - there are some easy things you can do to make it happen. If your bedroom is cute enough, you’ll never want to be anywhere else! We’ve gathered some cute bedroom ideas and inspiration to help you create the perfect bedroom. 

Cute Bedroom Ideas

Bright colors will instantly make your bedroom cuter! If painting the walls either isn’t a possibility or it feels too scary to commit to a bold color, stick with a neutral and use bright accessories. Pillows like this yellow polka-dot one, a bright painting like these flowers, and blankets like this red-orange and white throw will give the pop you need and can be easily changed out whenever you want a new look.

bedroom

via Decoist

Using lots of different patterns and textures will help your room feel more comfortable, cozy, and fun. Pillows with a lot of texture like this red throw, fuzzy blankets, and 3D wall art like this bison skull will make your room even more interesting.

bedroom

via Interior God

Find things you love and bring them into your room. If it’s unique to you, even better! Include a chalkboard wall, some fun wallpaper, an interesting accent chair - anything! Having personalized things in your room and hanging on your walls will make your space even better.

cute bedroom

via Homedit

Don’t feel like you need to go out and buy all new things. You can easily repaint a dresser, use a family heirloom, shop at a thrift store, and find a treasure that no one else has. Your room will be just as unique and quirky as you are!

lights

via Fairy Lights and Fun

Lighting is everything! Cool lamps like this chrome table lamp will make a huge difference, but don’t stop there. Bring in twinkle lights you can hang from the ceilings or walls to create an even more magical space.

What other cute bedroom ideas do you have?

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5 Current Interior Design Trends

Posted by Andie on May 18, 2018

Some design trends come and go so fast that it can be hard to keep up with all of them!  Here are 5 current interior design trends that you need to know about!  A few of them may be out soonish, but others have some major staying power in my opinon.  Read on for the list! 

 

1. The Color Green
Green just might be the new navy.  It's everywhere.  And I think it looks amazing.  So go paint your walls green, install green kitchen cabinets or a bathroom vanity, or simply add some green throw pillows to your sofa---- but just say yes please, to the color green.  It's not going anywhere anytime soon!

 

elegant decor magazine via pinterest

 

via Studio McGee

2. Velvet
Velvet seems to come and go in terms of popularity in the design world, but it is definitely having a major moment!  It's rich, it's striking, and it is all over the place.  It brings an element of sophistication and glam to a room that is unmatched!

 

via my domaine

 

via mad about the house

 

3. Ombre
Over the past few years you saw ombre hairstyles, fashion pieces, and even some DIY ombre furniture---- but ombre is taking it up a notch right now in the design world.  Ombre walls are a huge thing!  Just pinterest ombre wall and you'll be shocked!  I don't think I'd dare try it as a DIY, because if you don't get it perfect I think it looks real bad, but if you're a really good painter or willing to hire an artist to do it for you, it can look pretty spectacular. 

 

via decoratop.co

 

4. Tropical Leaf Prints
Tropical leaf prints, wallpaper, and textiles have been 'in' for a little while now, and the trend just keeps going!  Whether you bring the outdoors in with real life plants, or simply prints, it makes your home feel more fresh, alive and natural.

 

via lonny

via OnceuponpaperCo Etsy shop

 

5. Ice Cream Colors
I scream, you screm, we all scream for ice cream!  It's no surprise that bright, bold gelato colors are the real deal right now.  Personally, I think the room below is a little overstated for my liking, but I love the idea of incorporating a fun gelato color with a few muted tones.  

 

via house beautiful

 

 

What do you think about these trends?

Love 'em?  Hate 'em?  Let me know! 

 

 

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Bathroom Paint Colors

Posted by Alyssa on May 17, 2018

bathroom

Figuring out bathroom paint colors can be tricky. You don’t want a boring color that washes out the room, but it can also be hard to decide on a color that won’t be overwhelming in a small space. When it comes to picking paint colors there can be a lot of trial and error. It helps to have a little bit of direction and an idea of what you want before you start painting test colors, so I’ve gathered together some popular bathroom paint colors to help. 

Bathroom Paint Colors

white bathroom

via Delightfully Chic

White bathrooms are so clean and will help your bathroom feel crisp and fresh - especially if you have bright white tiles. Benjamin Moore Simply White is a great, basic white paint you may want to try.

pink bathroom

via Apartment Therapy

While a pink bathroom might seem girlish and too young when you first think of it, but there are some beautiful, elegant pinks you can use without looking too feminine. Blush pink was huge last year and it’s sticking around! If you’re interested, Benjamin Moore Cream Puff.

 

yellow bathroom

via Better Homes and Gardens

For a bright, happy, and colorful room you won’t go wrong with yellow. With a sharp contrast between white trim, tiles, and accessories, yellow bathrooms can be bold without being overbearing. Give Behr Bicycle Yellow a try and see how you like it.

gray bathroom

via Kids Room Ideas

Gray is a classic neutral color that you can’t go wrong with. You can try out what I believe is the perfect gray color, or try out Farrow and Ball Cornforth White.

blue bathroom

via Home Bunch

Blue might be the color people think of immediately when choosing a bathroom paint color, but it doesn’t have to be boring. With so many different shades and hues of the color, you’ll be able to find something unique to your style. Benjamin Moore Manor Blue is a calming color that will help you create the perfect retreat.

charcoal bathroom

via The Blooming Hydrangea

For a bold, modern look you may want to use charcoal in your bathroom. A step up from black, but not as harsh or intense as pure black, charcoal will give you a warm bathroom you’ll never want to leave. If you’re intimidated by such a dark color, try out Benjamin Moore Wrought Iron and see how it looks before you count it out! 

 

What colors have you painted your bathrooms?  

 

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How to Make Homemade Ice Cream

Posted by Alyssa on May 16, 2018

ice cream

Some of my favorite summer memories growing up were the times my family would make homemade ice cream. We would get the ice cream started before dinner and then enjoy a delicious homemade dessert afterward. Make this a family tradition of your own! If you spend $499 or more during RC Willey’s 2018 Memorial Day Sale you’ll be able to buy your own ice cream maker for only $10 while supplies last. Once you get your ice cream maker, you’ll need to know how to make homemade ice cream and we’ve got you covered. Keep reading for a quick, easy recipe below! 

How to Make Homemade Ice Cream

The wonderful thing about homemade ice cream is that there are endless recipes! If you’re a chocolate lover like me, you’ll want to save this recipe for chocolate ice cream. Whatever ingredients and experiments you try out, the basic principles are the same.

What You’ll Need:

  • 6 cups Milk
  • 3 cans Sweetened Condensed Milk
  • 15 TBSP Cocoa Powder
  • Ice
  • Rock Salt

Instructions:

  • Pour the milk and the sweetened condensed milk into the canister and stir together.
  • Add 15 TBSP of cocoa powder to the milk mixture and mix well.
  • Once your ingredients are mixed together, put the dasher into the canister and make sure everything is lined up so it will fit together easily. Put on the lid, put the canister into the ice cream maker, and lock the lid into place.
  • Now you’re ready to add the ice and salt! Add about six cups of ice to the ice cream maker surrounding the canister and then cover with rock salt. Don’t skimp on the salt! Repeat this process until the ice is at the top of the canister.
  • Plug in your machine and let it run for 30 minutes adding more ice and salt as needed. Enjoy!

 

Don’t forget to check out RC Willey’s 2018 Memorial Day Sale and let us know your favorite homemade ice cream recipe!

 

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