Room Redesign on a Budget

Do you have that one room that just needs a little love? Maybe it’s a tad outdated, or maybe it just doesn’t carry the aesthetic of the rest of your home. We’d love to be able to change up, or restyle a room whenever we got the urge, but if we’re on a budget, that might not be realistic. Here’s some tips to redesign a room on a budget. Little changes can have a huge effect on the outcome of your living space.

Evaluate Your Space

  • What is this space?
  • What do I use it for now?
  • How does it make me feel?

It’s good to figure out what this space currently means to you. If this space is technically a living room, what do you consider its use? A family den, a greeting space, a place that houses your couches? It’s important to understand what this space means to you and the others in your household before you decide what it’ll eventually become. Once you evaluate the space and have your answer to those three questions, then ask yourself: what do you want this space to be and how do you want to feel when you’re in this space?

Easy Transformations

If you choose to redo a room, try first to transform it through budget friendly means. From reusing, or upcycling items you already own, to merely painting the space a new color. There are a million and one ways to spruce up your space.

  1. Paint! Painting a room is one of the simplest, more affordable ways to reimagine your room. Color has a transformative power. If you’ve already decided to change up what’s hanging on your walls, or rearranging furniture, you may want to think about taking a pause on putting anything back up before you have a chance to paint.

Room Redesign on a Budget #paint #redesign #room #house #budget #money

 

Use paint to bring a certain emotion, or presence to a room. Is there a color that makes you feel happy, studious, or calm? Don’t be afraid to get creative with your interiors, and your color schemes. If you’re going for a minimal look, but want to bring color into the space, try painting one wall with a strong accent color. If you want to bring an extra uniqueness to a room with concrete or wood floors, try painting your floors instead of your walls.

  1. Chalkboard Paint

If you’re looking for creative way to utilize your walls, try using chalkboard paint. It’s a fun and useful way to use a wall in a room. It’s excellent for children’s rooms, as they can doodle on a chalkboard wall as much as they’d like without ruining the wall itself. It’s also a great idea for decorating a front room, or kitchen on a budget. It’s a great idea if you like to have a “to-do”, or grocery list visible to everyone in your household.

 

Have Fun With Your Furnishings

Move it around! If it’s not in your budget to find brand new furniture for the room you’re redecorating, use some time to move your furnishings around. Sometimes, all it takes to look at a room in a new light is just the simple act of moving things about. There’s always that one piece of furniture that either suits a room or doesn’t. Find a clear space for it.

Room Redesign on a Budget #paint #redesign #room #house #budget #money

Upcycle & D.I.Y.

Before you go out and make a new purchase for your room, try and upcycle something you already own. Whether you’re giving a beloved piece of furniture a facelift, or take an upholstery class to update tired seating with new slipcovers.

Room Redesign on a Budget #paint #redesign #room #house #budget #money

Make It Livable

Only spend on what you know you’ll love for years to come. One of the most enjoyable things about getting to revamp a space is having a chance to change the way you experience the space. Whether you make bold choices, or simple ones; this is your chance to fall in love with a space you’ve maybe forgotten about, or even avoided. Redoing a room on a budget doesn’t lessen the work that can be done, but it does mean you should be willing to get creative.

Make sure you know where and why you’re spending your budget. If you plan to splurge on one or two items to pull your room together, do so carefully. There’s nothing worse than spending your budget on items that will never use, or items that will run out their welcome quickly. If you intend to buy instead of repurpose, make sure that you’ll love what you bring into a space many years down the road. Keep your spaces unique, but livable.

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Tips to Spring Clean Your Budget

Now that spring is here, it’s time to take a look at your budget and see some ways that you can cut down on how much you are spending, on a month by month basis. If you don’t already have a budget, then make one! If you do, then pull it out and take a look at some simple ways you can cut down on the money you routinely spend…

Tips to Spring Clean Your Budget #spring #budget #money #lifestyle #savings

 

Use Public Transit (or Other Methods to Drive Less)

Cutting down transportation costs is one of the best and quickest ways to lower your monthly expenses significantly. If your area has sufficient public transportation to get you where you need to go, don’t hesitate to use it. You’ll be surprised at the fortune you save on gas.

Again, anything you can do to cut down on transportation costs will make a huge difference. Another option you have is to ride a bike. Making a bike your primary mode of transportation will also be good for the environment and improve your health. If you’re looking to cycle to work, but don’t have the budget for a brand new bike, check the inventory at secondhand stores and check yard sales too.

Tips to Spring Clean Your Budget #spring #budget #money #lifestyle #savings

Get Rid of Unused Gym Memberships

Cancel your gym membership and head to your local park to get the same workout for free. Use the natural layout of the park, trails, playground equipment, and benches to create a comprehensive workout routine. Not only will you save on gym membership fees, but you will also enjoy some time in the sun.

Tips to Spring Clean Your Budget #spring #budget #money #lifestyle #savings

Cut Back on Subscriptions

Whether it’s the newspaper, magazines, or even an internet streaming service like Netflix, subscriptions are usually things you can easily live without. If you’re really looking to cut monthly expenses this summer, cut all subscriptions and spend more time outdoors.

Be a Smart Driver

You’d be surprised at how much money you can save merely by changing some simple driving habits. Let up on the gas pedal just a little when accelerating, cut down on speeding, and try walking to destinations that are reasonably close. Even if you can’t completely live without a car, chances are you can whittle down your gas expenses significantly.

Eat Less Meat

It may be difficult to BBQ less and cut down on the number of steaks you grill this summer, but the fact is meat is expensive. Take the opportunity to learn some new recipes and cook some refreshing vegetarian dishes. If you grow a garden, you can use your own vegetables and save even more on meals than you ever thought possible.

Partake in Free Events

Summer is a great time to get out into the action of your hometown. If you’re looking for some budget-friendly excitement to mix up your summer, go to a free concert or local outdoor event. Taking advantage of these seasonal events may provide your family with a free or inexpensive experience that would normally cost a lot more to enjoy.

Tips to Spring Clean Your Budget #spring #budget #money #lifestyle #savings

Update to LED Lightbulbs

LED lightbulbs are becoming a popular alternative light source in contemporary homes. Not only do they last longer than traditional light bulbs, they are also more energy efficient, more versatile, and completely silent. Switching over to LED lightbulbs will cost some money upfront, but will prove to be a saving investment in the long run.

Unplug Unused Electronics

It may be a task so simple that it never crossed your mind. Or, it may seem so menial that you haven’t actually gone through with it. Either way, now is the time to try it out. Unplugging all electrical devices you aren’t currently using them can save significantly on monthly electric expenses.

Ask About Loan Modifications

If loan payments are becoming more than you can handle from month to month, you might want to look into getting a loan modification. Making a permanent change in one or more items on your loan can be a huge help in giving you some leeway on your monthly budget. Not to mention your loan payments will feel less daunting.

Do Specific Chores Yourself

For some chores, you may be tempted to use a professional service, but you can save hundreds of dollars just by doing it yourself. For example: lawn mowing! Use a non-electric push mower and turn a boring activity into a time of connection with the outdoors. Mowing with a push mower will save you the money you would have otherwise spent on gas for an electric one.

Another example is car washes. Now that the weather is warming up, it is the perfect time to wash the car in your own driveway and complete a chore while having some family fun too. Grab some cleaning supplies and head to the driveway when the heat of the summer strikes.

Minimizing the risks of fire in your home

Every home should be a safe place for families to grow and thrive together. In addition to taking steps to ensure that our homes are free of judgment and frequent arguments, it is also important that we do all we can to eliminate the threat of physical danger as well. Every home has a number of safety hazards that could potentially cause some serious damage if steps are not taken to prevent them. When we are at home enjoying time with our family, somebody accidentally getting hurt is usually the last thing on our minds. But statistics have shown that accidents do happen—usually when we least expect them.

Unfortunately, accidents in the home are responsible for causing more than 18,000 lives each year in the United States alone. They also account for more than 21 million medical visits each year, which amounts to around $200 billion dollars annually. Perhaps the worst thing about all of these accidents is that they are preventable with some planning and preparation. Here is a guide to make you aware of common home safety hazards and what you can do to prevent them.

Fires

Just over 3,000 Americans are killed each year due to house fires, making it the third most dangerous safety threat as far as home accidents are concerned. In addition to being physically dangerous, they also do a lot of damage to the home and valuable possessions within it. Here’s how you can avoid fires in your home.

Minimizing the risks of fire in your home #safe #family #home

  • Install smoke detectors in each bedroom, the kitchen, living room, and any other large room.
  • Test your smoke detectors each month and replace their batteries every six months.
  • Keep a fire extinguisher in your home and make sure it is easily accessible.
  • Have a fire safety plan that everybody in your home knows and understands.

Falls

Falling is the most dangerous household accident, claiming over one-third of all home fatalities. Elderly people are most likely to fall and be seriously injured afterward. However, falls can happen to anybody, so it will be well worth it to take some simple steps to reduce the risk.

Minimizing the risks of fire in your home #safe #family #home

    • Install safety gates at the bottom and top of staircases to prevent anybody (especially small children) from accidentally falling down them.
    • Place rubber mats in all showers and bathrooms.
    • Wipe up any spills or wet floors immediately.
    • Make sure all stairs both inside and outside the house are stable and in good condition.

Poisoning

Consuming poisonous materials claims the lives of over 5,000 Americans annually. Young children are most likely to succumb to this kind of accident. Here’s what you can do to lower the chances of your children being poisoned.

      • Keep all cleaning products that contain dangerous chemicals in high places, out of children’s reach.
      • Store paints, pesticides, and other dangerous chemicals behind locked doors or cabinets.
      • Never leave your children unattended in the kitchen, garage, or anywhere else where they might be exposed to dangerous chemicals.
      • Keep the number for poison control readily available in your phone or posted somewhere in your house.

Carbon Monoxide

Perhaps one of the scariest household threats is carbon monoxide. It is impossible to rely on our senses to detect dangerous levels of carbon monoxide, which is part of the reason why it takes so many lives every year. The most important step you can take to reduce the risk of carbon monoxide poisoning is to install carbon monoxide detectors in your home and test them regularly.

Drowning

Around 800 Americans die from drowning in their homes each year—most of them are children ages one to four. It does not take much water to drown a small child (two inches is plenty), so it is essential that you take steps to minimize the risk. Here’s how.

Minimizing the risks of fire in your home #safe #family #home

      • Never leave children unattended in a bath tub, no matter how much water is inside of it.
      • Keep all toilet lids and bathroom doors closed when they are not in use.
      • All swimming pools, ponds, and other outdoor bodies of water should be protected by a gate that is only accessible intentionally.

Following these simple steps will help you greatly reduce the risk of accidents happening in your home. All of these things can be done in one week and will help to keep your home a safe place for you and your loved ones for years to come.

4 Causes of Sudden Breakouts

Having adult acne in your 20’s and 30’s is actually more common than you may think. We all assume that pesky breakouts only exist in our teenage years, but they can actually begin when we’re adults. There are a few reasons that you might be experiencing sudden breakouts later in life, but don’t worry, you’ve got options to treat it!

4 Causes of Sudden Breakouts #stress #hormones #lifestyle #life #beauty

1. Hormones
Fluctuating hormones can wreak havoc on our complexion. As women, our hormones can seesaw well into our adulthood due to our periods, pregnancy, menopause, and so on. An excess production of the hormone, androgen, can be the culprit of this. It increases our sebum production, which can clog our pores and cause breakouts. For some, this may be a side effect of their birth control, and for others, birth control can be the solution for breakouts. It’s important to consult a doctor to find the right birth control for you if you’re considering it as a treatment option. If not, it’s important to be proactive when it comes to your skin. Consider incorporating products that contain salicylic acid into your beauty routine to prevent or limit the breakout in the days leading up to the start of your menstrual cycle.

2. Stress
It’s no surprise that stress can take a toll on our overwell physical and mental wellbeing. When we feel stressed or overwhelmed, our bodies produce another hormone called cortisol. This can lead to increased sebum production, which in turn causes breakouts. Obviously, if we were able to eliminate the stress in our lives, we would. But since we can’t possibly eliminate all stressors life throws our way, it’s important to find healthy ways to cope when we find ourselves feeling this way.

4 Causes of Sudden Breakouts #stress #hormones #lifestyle #life #beauty

3. Lifestyle Factors
This can be anything from not washing your pillow cases often enough to touching your face too much. It can even be due to the weather and changes in climate. It’s important to address any variances in your skincare routine or your lifestyle since these could be the underlying culprits. Once you can pinpoint what it is about your lifestyle that could be causing your breakouts, be proactive and change those habits. Clean your cell phone, stop touching your face, wash your sheets and towels more often, and find skincare products that work best for your skin. This area may be a little harder to pinpoint, but it is essential in clearing up your skin!

4. You Love the Sun
Now we all love the sunshine and beautiful weather, but the myth that sunlight is good for acne breakouts is just that, a myth. If you use tanning beds or spend time outside without sunscreen, the UV radiation is damaging your skin, which can actually lead to your skin shedding water and oil. This will leave you with dry skin, and can even temporarily make the appearance of your skin look nicer, but it’s actually worsening it in the long run. Your bodies way of compensating for dry skin is producingmore oil, which can lead to future breakouts. Although you may feel you look your best after a day in the sun, you’re actually setting yourself up for those sudden breakouts you’ve been trying so hard to avoid.

4 Causes of Sudden Breakouts #stress #hormones #lifestyle #life #beauty

Hygge Your Home Life: 3 Tips to Stay Cozy All Winter Long

Coziness can be hard to come by during the winter months. That’s why it’s so important to stay up to date on all the different techniques in home life.

Having a unique home life not only allows you to show off your own individual style to guests and family alike, but it can also better equip you to beat the freeze so you can chill in peace. Hygge is one trend in particular that emphasizes comfort and relaxation as principles to reach modern luxury.

Hygge Your Home Life: 3 Tips to Stay Cozy All Winter Long #hygge #family #living #home #cozy #winter

So, what is hygge? Hygge is a long withstanding tradition that many Scandinavian countries participate in. This lifestyle trend is often related to home life through cozy textures, simplistic  settings, comfortable furnishings and activities.

#1: Keep Comfort In
It’s easy to forget all the ways winter can invade your space. Winterizing your home is a helpful way to manage unwanted leaks of cold air and chill.

There are plenty of ways to ensure that your home is functioning at its best ability during winter months. Some easy things to consider are blocking drafts from entering at the bottom of doors and windows, adding plush rugs throughout your space or lowering the thermostat.

Hygge Your Home Life: 3 Tips to Stay Cozy All Winter Long #hygge #family #living #home #cozy #winter

Why not save a little money while you’re at it? Financial peace of mind is just an added bonus to enhancing your home’s ability to keep the cold out. Here’s a painless DIY project for creating draft stoppers to save money on your monthly energy bill.

#2: Invest in Coziness
Comfortable living is care-free living. If you’ve been waiting to devote some time and money to your interiors, now is the perfect time.

Have enough plush pillows and throw blankets to fill each of your living spaces. Get that new coffee maker that you’ve been waiting to buy for months to truly enjoy the effects of a delicious cup of joe.

Don’t forget to dedicate yourself to one of the most important aspects of your life. Sleep is often overlooked and while it’s fine to indulge in some catnaps on the sofa, upgrade your bedroom mattress to catch some natural zzz’s. Keep costs reasonable without giving up quality by finding some cost-effective memory foam options online.

#3: Take Care Of Yourself
Don’t let winter freeze your heart. Give into the mantra of sound body, sound mind. It’s easy to find ourselves in a rut during winter.

Hygge Your Home Life: 3 Tips to Stay Cozy All Winter Long #hygge #family #living #home #cozy #winter

Combat adverse effects by getting yourself out of a slump. Self-care can take shape in many forms. Keep things interesting by incorporating new activities that promote your life and overall health. With all of our free time inside, it may be the perfect time to pick up a new hobby or skill.

Happy New Year

I’m not one for New Year resolutions, I never have been. There will be no new year new me, however I will be doing a few  things differently.

Happy New Year! #newyear #optimistic #hello2019 #goaldigger #goal
  • Devise a plan & execute
  • Become more aware of my surroundings 
  • Reflect on myself
  • Take better care of my mental health

I am devising a plan for 2019, I’m hoping it to be my best year yet. I’m still trying to find my way career wise (which i feel like puts me behind), when I’m in an office all I can think about is being my own boss. This isn’t because I’m not happy with the bosses I have but because I have a passion and drive that I want to peruse and bring to life. I’m trying to put the pieces of the intricate puzzle together freestyle, I have no picture to compare it to so I am winging it more or less. I’ll be giving it more thought; which is very unusual of me, I’m usually already diving in head first.

I can’t pinpoint which it is, the fact that people are so rude or the news I see every afternoon. I am slowly losing hope in humanity and I’m considering becoming a cat. I watch way too many detective/murder shows to be off guard as much as I’ve let myself be while out mingling with the public. A bad habit I do have is scoping out the scenery to find objects that could be used as a weapon if need be (told ya, too many murder shows watched).

You’re probably going to laugh at me but until of late last year I hadn’t given any thought to reflections of myself. What happened was what happened and that was that, I didn’t dissect feelings or dwell on things. I internalize things, it’s what I do (which is why my screws are a little too tight. Pretty sure I’ll need major therapy if I dig up all the little tidbits, feelings, thoughts, emotions, etc I’ve buried in my years of rational thought). 

Oh mental health, what a very tangled web you weave. Going back to devising a plan then the execution, I feel like my anxiety is the worst it’s been in the job field. I have control over what happens while I’m at home or out in public but when I’m working things get hectic then I panic. Over the years I’ve ignored the anxiety monster however now it’s grown from a tiny little creature into a massive angry monster. Oh, it’s picked up a friend along the way as well – welcome depression. Hey, the more the merrier right? Wrong! I’ll have great days then on a random Tuesday I’ll be so overly stimulated by anxiety before I hit my snooze button twice that I can’t bare the thought of crawling out from under the blankets. Days like that random Tuesday will take discipline but at least I could work from the confines of my blanket fort.

I know the universe has its very own plan for me and I’m truly excited to see it, whatever it maybe. 

Then again I may wear a unicorn horned headband the entirety of 2019 and call it a success. 

Loaded Baked Potato Soup

I love my Instant pot! I practically use it for almost everything I cook. I like that I can just add everything from the recipe and look it cook while I get other things done. Even if there are a few different steps, they can all be done with ease. If you’ve got an instant pot or you are thinking of getting one you can find delicious recipes from my Instant Pot Pinterest board.

Welcoming the colder weather means welcoming warmer dishes. ‘Tis the season for all things soup! I for one love a good soup recipe especially if it’s wholesome and filling.

Loaded Baked Potato Soup Recipe #recipe #instantpot #soup #winter #meal

 

I’ve made this soup five times already and each time I tweak it slightly making it a little better than the last. I’ve made it twice using this exact recipe so I think it’s the best to share with you. It’s so much cheaper to make at home than buying it out or in grocery stores. It’s also fun to put together too and in no time you pretty much have an entire meal.

I love all things potatoes and this soup tastes like a loaded baked potato with sour cream, cheese, bacon bits, and butter. I used Better than Bouillon chicken base for a little extra flavor. I’ve made the soup a few times without it and it seems as though something is missing. 

Loaded Baked potato Soup #soup #instantpot #recipe #food

Ingredients: 

  • 1 1/2 pounds potatoes, red, or Russets (I used red because they are my favorite)
  • 1/4 cup flour
  • 1/4 cup butter
  • 3/4 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp pepper
  • 1 tsp Better than Bouillon chicken base
  • 4 cups milk (any kind of your choosing)
  • 1/2 cup grated medium or sharp cheddar
  • 1/2 cup sour cream
  • 1 (3 oz) package real bacon bits
  • 2 green onions, diced (you can add more if you’d like)

Get to cooking:

  1. If using red or yellow potatoes, scrub them clean. If using Russet potatoes, peel them. Pour 1 cup of water in the bottom of your Instant Pot and then place trivet in the bottom. Place potatoes on top of the trivet.
  2. Cover the Instant Pot and lock the lid. Make sure valve is set to “sealing.” Set the pressure cook button (mine says manual) for 10 minutes on high pressure. When the timer beeps carefully move the valve to “venting” to let the pressure release. When you can, remove the lid.
  3. Remove the potatoes and set aside. Discard the water. Turn the Instant Pot to the saute setting on “less.” Melt the butter. Once butter is melted whisk in one tablespoon of flour at a time until you get a creamy, lump-free roux. Add in the salt and pepper. Let it start to bubble, whisking constantly.
  4. Once it is bubbling add in the milk and Better than Bouillon and whisk. Adjust the saute setting to a high heat. Whisk every few minutes until the milk starts to thicken and bubble.
  5. Turn the Instant Pot to the warm setting. Stir in the sour cream, cheddar, diced onions and bacon.
  6. Smash the potatoes with a potato masher. My potatoes were somewhat smashed but still had some chunkiness to them. Stir the potatoes into the Instant Pot. Salt and pepper the soup if needed.
  7. Serve topped with shredded cheese and bacon bits. 

Loaded Baked potato Soup #soup #instantpot #recipe #food

Excuse the photos, it smelled so good and I was so hungry while making it my stomach was practically trying to eat itself. The left overs are better the next day too! Give it a try and please let me know what you thought! 

If you don’t have time to read it now, then PIN it for later!

Goals For The Rest Of The Year

After a month away from the blog I’ve went through a small transformation, kind of like a butterfly wiggling out of its cocoon. It was uncomfortable, confining, and scary but I think it’s for the best. 

I shed a relationship which I think is better as a friendship. I did learn a lot from the time we were together that I’ll carry with me for the rest of my life. I also relocated jobs, I landed a full time at the beginning of October which I love. The company is two companies under one roof so it’s super fast paced and there was and still is a lot to learn.

Sitting back reflecting on the year made me realize I’ve pretty much been living on autopilot too, just going through the motions day after day.

Goals For The Rest Of The Year #goals #lifestyle

As for goals to achieve throughout the rest of the year:

• To become emotionally aware

• Keep trying to heal emotional wounds

• Becoming more comfortable and confident with myself

• Putting the focus back on freelance writing

This year has been tough, dad passed away in February which took a lot out of me and I’ve been struggling a lot since then but I am trying to deal with all the feelings that come with loosing someone, not just anyone but a parent. It all happened so suddenly, if I knew then what I know now I would’ve forced him to seek out help. I’m still trying to pick up all the pieces of my broken heart. November is also his birthday month, so there is that too.

I’m shifting into a healthier lifestyle, everything that happened this year made me realize ya only get one body and one life (as you’re not a cat), it needs to be nurtured and looked after with care not stuffed with greasy cheeseburgers and pizzas. The cooler weather makes it easier to get out for walks on the regular, which is the plan. 

I have an amazing freelance client who I’ve been working with all year, she is kind of the perfect client actually. She’s been so understanding throughout the projects we’ve worked on. She offered me a huge project that i am very lucky to have the opportunity. I want to settle down, focus, and create killer content.