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cheap

7 articles tagged as cheap
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Cheap & Easy DIY Baby Keepsake Christmas Ornament

 

I LOVE Christmas. It is BY FAR my favorite time of year and my favorite holiday. I know that’s the case for a lot of people, but it’s just one of those things that I look forward to ALL YEAR LONG – and I always have – ever since I was a kid.

Twinkling lights, Christmas music, decorations, gift giving – it all makes me so happy!

And I’m loving Christmas even MORE now that I have Lilly. I know she has no idea what’s going on this year, but nevertheless, I love it.

Anyway, I’ve been trying to think of a cheap and easy little DIY project to do for her first Christmas ornament. Sure, you can get an ornament that says “Baby’s First Christmas 2013″ and put a picture in it or something, but I wanted to do something a little different.

So, I thought I’d try to make a keepsake ornament for her! Continue Reading →

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Cheap and Easy DIY Nursery Closet Clothing Organizers

 

We’ve been making HUGE strides on the nursery over the last month! And it’s been SO fun for me because it’s finally the time where I get to come in and work my magic. My AMAZING husband worked so hard to rip up the carpet, lay the flooring, paint, put furniture together, etc. etc.

Now is where I come in and do all the fun and pretty stuff. :)

Well, I’ve seen a ton of examples on Project Nursery (aka: crack for moms-to-be) of those adorable closet organizers that organize baby’s clothing by size and/or age.

Well, I wanted to DIY my own version and put a personal touch on it. I’ve seen some on Etsy that cost as much as $40! WHAT?! I mean, they’re adorable, but I don’t have $40 to spend on closet organizers.

So, here’s a little quick and dirty tutorial (READ: THIS IS SUPER EASY and took me all of about 20 minutes to do).

Supplies you’ll need:

  • 6 Foam doorknob hangers (I got mine at Michaels for $4)
  • Stickers and/or wooden figures of your choosing – I opted for safari animals to fit in with our safari / Kenya themed nursery (I got all my little wooden figures from Michaels for $0.30 cents each – so total came out to about $3.60)
  • Marker(s) – I ended up just using one black marker
  • Ribbon of your choosing (got my ribbon from the sale bin!)
  • Glue (I used a hot glue gun. Elmer’s would PROBABLY work, but I’d probably go with hot glue if you have it)

Total cost for this project for me: about $9
Cheap and Easy DIY Nursery Closet Clothing Organizers

STEP ONE: Lay out your doorknob hangers and the stickers or figurines and get a feel for how you want each one to look. You obviously want to do this before you go gluing anything.

STEP TWO: Start gluing. It’s really as simple as that.

Cheap and Easy DIY Nursery Closet Clothing Organizers

STEP THREE: Now, this is how I decided to break up my clothing organizers:

  • Newborn
  • 0-3 months
  • 3-6 months
  • 6-12 months
  • 12-18 months
  • 18-24 months

Cheap and Easy DIY Nursery Closet Clothing Organizers

So, I basically just wrote those out on each organizer.

STEP FOUR: Tie your ribbons! Make sure you cut enough that there’s going to be room to hang each one from the closet bar

Cheap and Easy DIY Nursery Closet Clothing Organizers Cheap and Easy DIY Nursery Closet Clothing Organizers

STEP FIVE: You’re all done! Here’s how I hung them – I just tied the ribbon around the hanger and then tied the hanger to the bar. I know you could probably cut the doorknob hanger to fit over the bar, but honestly, I liked it better this way. I thought they were cuter. :)

Cheap and Easy DIY Nursery Closet Clothing Organizers Cheap and Easy DIY Nursery Closet Clothing Organizers

That’s it! Super cheap and super easy!

Any mamas-to-be made any closet organizers like these? Plan on making any like these?

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20 Cheap, Fun, and Creative Date Night Ideas!

 

As we have been preparing for baby (and because we are savvy spenders and big savers anyway), John and I have loved coming up with creative ideas for DATE NIGHT. I thought I’d share some with y’all! Now, these are date night ideas that you can use if you are dating, engaged, OR married!

We have not, personally, done all of these, but they’re ones we’ve thought of or brainstormed and can’t wait to try out!

1. Play Netflix / Hulu plus / DVD / TV roulette: Take the remote, open your favorite tv-watching service together, and flip through till you land on something totally random that you can watch together! You might discover a new show or movie!

2. “Build” your dream house together: John and I play this one all the time. Each of you take turns “building” a feature. Start from the outside and work your way in. How many acres of land? What does your yard look like? Landscaping? Porch? House features? Go big or go home!

3. Recreate the meal from your first date / wedding night / other important occasion: Head to the grocery store and get all the accoutrements for making a memorable meal!

4. Drive around looking to get lost: Get in the car, start driving, and just go!

5. Look on Trulia.com and find the most expensive houses for sale in your area and go look at them: Pretty self-explanatory!

6. Recreate your first date: Everything from what you wore, to what you ate, to what you did – recreate it as closely as possible. And awkward (and super romantic) first kisses at the end of the night are a must!

7. Pull out old photo albums and share stories: I love reminiscing and telling John stories from my childhood or from growing up and I LOVE seeing pictures of him as a kid!

8. Learn to play a card game: We LOVE games – go buy a pack of cards from the store and look up a card game you don’t know how to play and learn it

9. Rearrange or do something to redecorate a room: This one is a favorite of my project-loving husband.

10. Go to a coffee shop, restaurant, or park and people watch: Pick a busy place… people watching can be so fun!

11. Go to a coffee shop, restaurant, or park and “write a story” for two people you see: Pick a random pairing of people. Give them names, jobs, backgrounds, “write” a story around these strangers you know nothing about.

12. Star gaze: We love driving John’s pickup truck to a field, parking it, laying in the back truck bed and looking at the stars. Get the Star Walk app on your phone for even MORE fun!

13. Midnight picnic: Pack a midnight picnic and head somewhere!

14. Make cookies (or buy cookies / donuts / a delicious treat) and go downtown and hand them out to strangers: This is all about putting a smile on stranger’s faces… and yours!

15. Organize a progressive dinner with friends or neighbors: My dad has done these a bunch where he lives and he and Bonnie LOVE them!

16. Set a budget, go to a Thrift Store, and buy an outfit to dress the other person up in: Yeah, crazy clothes encourages!

17. Make ice cream sundaes: I’m talking go to the grocery store and get THE WORKS!

18. Build a fort! I’m talking old-school, kid-like fort in your living room!

19. Go test drive a car: Head to a dealership and test drive a new car!

20. Come up with a love “bucket list”: Come up with a list of 10, 20, 100 things you both want to do before you die! Bonus if the item is something you can do together!

What other date night ideas do YOU love? Which one of these are you going to try out with your significant other?

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mothers-day-13

You guys. I am tired. My weekend was SO fun, but I am tired. Now, I’m not complaining, I’m merely making a statement of my tiredness.

I had the day off of work on Friday and I felt like such a rebel. I consciously didn’t make my bed. WHAT?!  I am a bit OCD about making our bed every day. And Friday, I was heading to Burlington to meet my sister and nephew for lunch and I took one look at the bed and said, “Nope. I’m not making you.”

As my husband so appropriately said, “You’re so metal.”

He’s so sweet.

Anywho. Saturday was JAM PACKED. I helped to throw my friend’s baby shower and it was A-W-E-S-O-M-E. Seriously. It was so awesome. I had a blast. And the girls who helped me put it all together were amaaaazing. I’m gonna blog the whole thing this week. You can bet your boots das right.

Saturday afternoon, hubs and I headed to Newton to spend time with his parents. Dinner, visiting, and whatnot. Sunday (Mother’s Day) we got up – went to church, bible study, and then came back to the house for some grilled chicken and corn-on-the-cob. Nom. Nom. Nom.

My mother-in-law (or mother-in-love, as the card I gave her stated) wanted some impromptu family photos – so these are my only “Sunday / Mother’s Day / Church FASHION” photos from the weekend:

[this is me, my MIL, and hubs. my FIL was the photographer – hence why he wasn’t in the photo]

[me and hubs]

[in case you were curious – my dress was $13 from Old Navy last fall, cardigan is from JCrew, belt is from Target, and necklace is from JCrew via eBay via Hong Kong.

husband is sporting: a shirt from Old Navy, Jeans from Old Navy, and Old Gringo Cowboy Boots – those were his “wedding boots” as he likes to call them.]

[below is husband and his mama. aren’t they adorbs?]

[this is random, i’m aware, but this lonely magnolia was blooming on the magnolia tree at his parents house and i just thought it was so gorgeous]

now, what did we do for mother’s day gifts? well, we did a couple little things – but we knew we wanted to make her something nice – and what’s more nice and sentimental than wedding photos? oh yeah. so, i did a little remix of my DIY wooden photo boards.

If you wanna see how I did the other photo boards, you can check them out here.

Now, here’s my DIY photo gift board remix.

I wanted to do stacked frames. So, I got plain wood cuts from Hobby Lobby.

I got SIX total – THREE 7×9 cuts, ONE 11×9 cut, TWO 5×7 cuts.

I printed ONE horizontal 5×7 photo and TWO vertical 4×6 photos at Walgreens. That way they’d match up. Now, I did print them in color cause I liked these shots better in color than in black and white.

[I got spray paint. Now, I have now used both Krylon and Rust-oleum spray paint. I will NEVER get Krylon again. It is horrible. I’ve had bad experiences with Krylon dripping and getting watery and pooling before but I thought it was a fluke. Nope. No fluke. Rustoleum just goes on so much smoother and takes a lot less coats to get the job done. Krylon takes SO many coats and it doesn’t even fully cover. Blech. Anyway. This is was I used, and I just dealt.]

[Spray paints your boards. And if you’re using Krylon, like I did, it will take you all day to let it dry and repaint. Let it dry. And repaint.]

[Once your boards are dry 17190281098 hours later after using Krylon (haha!) get your Mod Podge and photos ready]

[Put a coat of Mod Podge on the wood itself, on the back of the photo, lay the photo down and get it centered, then coat the whole photo on top and get it nice and covered. Now, remember, the Mod Podge goes on cloudy but dries clear.

Also, I learned this, BE CAREFUL when doing this to color photos (especially glossy color photos) – I started to notice the Mod Podge turning a hint of pink and was taking some of the color off the photo. Thankfully I caught it in time, but just be careful.]

[After your Mod Podge is totally dry (the length of a movie – i.e. a movie hubs and I watched) you can either use Polyurethane or Gloss Sealant to seal your photo boards. For my previous project, I’d used Polyurethane. For this I tried the sealant. I’m not sure which one I like better yet. They both work just fine. Anyway, seal that photo board!]

[Now, let it dry completely (preferably overnight). Now is the time to get ready to get your stackable frames, well, stacked. I had hubs help me with this part getting the frames centered and marked.]

[Because I am a BEAST with a hot glue gun, I took over this part. Now, you could probably use Gorilla Wood Glue for this, but I love hot glue. So I used hot glue. And I hot glued that mess RIGHT ON.]

[Now you gotta get it so you can hang your photos up. This time I didn’t wanna risk them being flimsy, so I opted NOT to get the hammer-in ones, so husband helped me get these on and centered.]

[And voila! Now, obviously they’re not hanging on a wall cause the in-laws weren’t sure where to hang them yet. But I thought they came out great! What do you think?]

Anyway. Sorry, I know that was a long Mother’s Day recap post. I hope you had a great weekend. What did you do? Did you do anything fun? Post your links in the Comment Luv section of the comments with a recap of your weekend. Or you can just tell me about it. Anyways.

xoxo, all for now.

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Did you have a good weekend? I had a great weekend. Productive weekend. Fun weekend. Relaxing weekend. I love weekends.

For realsies. Okay, enough small talk. Let’s get to it.

There’s a part of me that is somewhat embarrassed that I’m continuing to share these fashion attempts with you guys. But then there’s a part of me that doesn’t give a rip. It seems like you guys like sharing in my learning experiences and risk taking, so for now, I’m gonna continue to post these. K? K.

I’d really love to hear your thoughts, ideas, suggestions. I have a feeling that you guys (the collective of you guys) are much better at this than I am.

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How sweet is this truck? There was an old car show going on outside the BBQ place where Hubs and I had dinner last week.

  • Shirt – Goodwill
  • Blazer – Belk
  • Necklace & Bracelet – JCrew Warehouse Sale
  • Jeans – Seven for All Mankind (got ‘em on eBay!)
  • Shoes – TOMS

I’m kind of obsessed with this $5 shirt I got from Old Navy. It’s neon. It’s comfy. And it was $5. WOOT.

  • Shirt – Old Navy – $5 (Similar)
  • Jeans – Seven For All Mankind (really old)
  • Shoes – Converse All Star (really old)
  • Necklace – I made it, yo

  • Shirt – Target – $3 (clearance! …a long time ago)
  • Skirt – JCrew (old)
  • Shoes – Rack Room Shoes (old)
  • Belt – Target ($5)
  • Necklace and Earrings – Kazuri Beads

I just thought it was hilarious that my dog was judging my clothes picture taking.

  • Sequin Shirt – Express (but purchased at Plato’s Closet for $7!)
  • Black Sweater – Express (purchased at Plato’s Closet)
  • Necklace – Kohl’s Jewelry (clearance section)
  • Jeans – Citizens For Humanity (old)
  • Shoes – Target (old)
  • Dog – Her name is Audrey Hepburn

  • Shirt – Ralph Lauren Polo (got it at the outlet – it’s really old though)
  • Cardigan – JCrew Factory
  • Necklaces – Wal-Mart clearance
  • Jeans – Seven for All Mankind
  • Shoes – TOMS

What do you guys think? Yay? Nay? What’s your favorite? What do you do when you’re trying to reinvent your wardrobe without buying new stuff? Cause that’s what I’m trying to do… 

Happy Monday!

xoxo, All for now.

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plaininvitation

Okay, so since I like to write about anything that’s going on in my life, and since I’ve gotten a lot of questions about the wedding lately, I figured I’d blog the latest awesomeness that we finally finished last week.

I preface this with a few things:

  1. I am not a professional designer
  2. I’m no wedding expert
  3. I am not the craftiest person in the world
  4. I am no invitation expert
  5. We saved money on invitations fo’sho’
  6. These took FOR.EV.ER.

But, I did learn a lot along the way. AND, I am really happy with the way they turned out.

Here’s the skinny on how they went and what I used and how much they cost.

Materials Used:

  • 1 ream of 120lb white OfficeMax brand card stock – $15
  • 1 package of white Avery print and tear envelopes – $18
  • 1 package of white Avery print and tear postcards – $18
  • White size A-9 envelopes – $20
  • 10″ square paper doilies – $24 (eBay)
  • 100 yards of navy blue twine – $5 (Save-On-Crafts.com)
  • 100 yards of sangria purple twine – $5 (Save-On-Crafts.com)
  • Custom photo stamps – Stamps.com ($115 with a coupon code)
  • Custom return address stamp – $40 (Sweet Papery)
  • Quatrefoil stamp – $5 – etsy
  • Last minute George Washington $.20 cent stamps (more on this later) – $30

Total cost (INCLUDING POSTAGE): $290

Now, for 150 invitations, I’d say that’s not bad.

Obviously the photo stamps and custom return address stamps were splurge items, but I justified the custom stamp because we can keep that for a long time… and, well, I really wanted the photo stamps. Creative googling gave me the coupon code so I saved money on them. WOOT!

For the invitations themselves:

1. I designed all three printed elements in Adobe Photoshop.

  • I took inspiration from The Wedding Chicks Mason Jar printables but I didn’t want them to be exactly like the other wedding invitations out there.
    • We really wanted the invitations to feel like us – both of us. The mason jars really go with our country theme (cowboy boots, FTW) and everyone that knows me knows I love quatrefoils. So we wanted all of those things to be incorporated.
  • I searched and found free fonts on DaFont.comthat I loved and used those
    • The script font is LaPointe’s Road
    • The regular font is Promised Freedom

2. I cut the edge of all the business cards, RSVP info cards (we went green and are doing web / email RSVPs), and invitations with Fiskars Paper Edgers – since I printed all of these invitations on a home printer on the 8.5×11″ card stock (which was a HUGE pain in itself and is not something to be taken lightly) this was really the best way to cut away unwanted white space away from the edges after cutting the 8.5×11″ card stock sheet in half.

If you are going to go this route, I HIGHLY recommend having something mindless to watch on TV whilst printing and cutting. Seriously. I’m not kidding.

3. After all the pieces were done being printed and cut I got the paper doilies out and laid the pieces in order on the doilie

4. To make the paper doilie envelope, I just centered the invitations on the diagonal doilie and folded the sides tightly over and then folded the bottom tightly up towards the center. After those parts were tight, I folded the top down over the middle to cover the side and bottom corners. (I hope all that made sense)

John was a really good doilie folder. He will hate that I am posting this picture. Teehee :)

5. To finish securing the envelope, we cut the two-color twine into 2/3 yard and tied it around in a bow.

Look at my dad and Bonnie go with the twine cutting!

Ta da!

6. Then after stamping, addressing (my sister is AWESOME for helping hand write addresses), and stamping again the regular envelopes, we put the finished product in and VOILA! DONE!

Here are the envelopes:

I love our stamp!

Yeah, I sealed the envelope with a quatrefoil. Sue me.

Also, you will notice the nice George Washington stamp. No, we did not plan that. We stopped at the post office before mailing them to make sure we had enough postage only to learn that the twine, yes the twine, adds $.20 cents an envelope because that means they can’t put them through the machine. GAH. Any ribbons, anything that makes the envelope bumpy jacks the price up. SO, it’s a good thing I checked or else we would have been in deep bull-poo. Yeah, I said bull-poo.

Anywho.

These things were DEFINITELY a labor or love but in the end we are really happy with how they turned out. Considering invitations, especially 150+ invitations can cost hundreds even THOUSANDS of dollars, we saved money and they had a personal touch. If you decide to do your own, just be prepared that saving money doesn’t always save headache.

What do you think? Yay? Nay?

Did you do your own invitations? Would YOU do your own invitations?

YAY! Now, to collect RSVPs.

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Okay, so this is my quick Sunday afternoon plea.

Some of you, if not all of you, know that I volunteer and serve a few times a month at the North Carolina Correctional Institute for Women in Raleigh, North Carolina with my church newhope Church. It’s a humbling experience every time that I serve. Every time.

Well, this Tuesday, we will be heading there to hold a Christmas service for the women, and we want to serve them by bringing a little something nice.

Now, our definition of something nice is completely different from what is actually allowed. So, we are bringing toiletry bags for the women – however, there’s a catch… we cannot bring ANY of the bags if we don’t have enough for every one. (Sad but true common sense). We are short right now about 20-30 bags.

That’s where you come in.

Would you like a quick opportunity to serve and bless a woman in need this Christmas? Gather these toiletries, place them in a clear ziploc / hefty bag, and bring them to ME (I will meet you and get it from you) or you can bring the bag DIRECTLY to newhope Church in Durham, NC by 6PM TOMORROW (that is MONDAY, December 19th, 2011). Mark the bag to the attention of Amy Lynn.

Here’s what the bags need – and I cannot stress enough that it has to be THESE EXACT ITEMS – I know we all feel generous and want to put in other things, but this is a prison and they will not allow it.

  • 1 TOOTHBRUSH
    • Colgate classic medium or soft FULL HEAD toothbrush
  • 1 TOOTHPASTE
    • Colgate gel toothpaste (4.2 oz)
    • OR
    • Colgate mint toothpaste (6.4 oz)
  • 1 BAR OF SOAP
    • Dial Gold Soap (3.5 oz)
    • OR
    • Ivory Soap (4.5 oz)
  • 1 DEODORANT
    • Lady Speed Stick Shower Fresh (1.5 oz)
    • OR
    • Secret Solid Powder Fresh (1.7 oz)
    • OR
    • Suave 24 Hour Protection Fresh Invisible Solid
  • 1 SHAMPOO
    • Suave Humectant Shampoo (14.5 oz)
    • OR
    • Suave Naturals Shampoo Strawberry (15 oz)
    • OR
    • Pantene Pro V Shampoo (12.6 oz)
Okay, so I did this myself and was able to find most of these at Wal-Mart. I put two bags together for two women and it came in at around $15-$20. I have also heard that Roses is a great place to find these items.
This is an incredibly quick, cheap, and easy way to make a HUGE impact on a woman’s life this Christmas.
I will even be there on Tuesday when we hand out the gifts so I will be able to report back with exactly the kind of impact you were able to make.
If you have ANY questions, AT ALL, about the #NCCIW prison ministry, what I do there, what newhope does there, or what it’s like to serve these women and daughters of Christ, let me know. Email me at mollyebuckley [at] gmail dot com.
Thank you!
xoxo
Molly
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