I love polymer clay. Have you ever used it? If you haven’t, let me tell you a bit about it. Polymer clay is an oven bake clay found in most craft stores. The multi brand clay comes in a whole spectrum of colors, can be texturized with any tool and be made to resemble just about anything. I’ve been working with the clay for a long time now and I’m still amazed at what it does. And to even sweeten this already sweet pot, it’s inexpensive stuff.
Some of my favorite items to make with polymer clay are pieces of jewelry, especially earrings. I like being able to make them exactly how I want them. For these earrings, I transferred a leaf drawing onto the clay to create a pair of one-of-a-kind earrings. Here’s how it’s done.
My couch has been feeling a little naked lately. It was looking a little drab and bare and there was really nothing to celebrate about it. You see, it was in desperate need of a pillow party, but here was my dilemma: pillows can mucho expensive! In fact, the most affordable pillow’s I could find that were bright and fun and fresh were $25.oo a piece. That would just not do. So I did what any proud DIY-er would do. I rolled up my DIY sleeves and threw myself a DIY Pillow Party! Wanna party too?
Check out this easy-peasy DIY painted pillow tutorial!…
Loose receipts cluttered our apartment, and for years I would just stuff them into a big old manilla envelope which I hid in my closet. then, inevitably tax-time would come and I would deal with ALL the receipts at once which was, ohmigosh, so time-consuming and awful!
This quick tip helps to make the tedious task of organizing receipts for taxes a little more bearable and a lot more cute! Read More »
I’m so happy to introduce Ashley. Ashley is a makeup artist in Toronto and has picked up a ton of helpful tips on how to save money on weddings. She’s heard it all!
Hi! My name is Ashley. I’m a makeup artist from Toronto and work primarily in bridal. I blog over at Makeup: The Hustle. I write all about managing my new freelance life.
I meet upwards of 50 brides a year, so I’ve picked up a few tips on how to save money on your big day. A lot of the money saving advice that I’ve seen for weddings require sacrifices that aren’t for everyone. Typically, the suggestions are to: have an “off-season” wedding, and to schedule your wedding during the Monday-Friday work week. These are great places to start with saving money on your wedding, but these 7 tips will work for those highly-desired Saturday weddings that happen in the “high-season”.
Today they’re sharing 6 festive Fourth of July inspired cocktail and mocktail recipes! Take it away Megan and Sarah…
Hello, And Then She Saved readers! We’re Sarah and Megan from Hello Holiday, and we are just over the moon to be asked to do a regular guest column for Anna’s blog.
Thanks to her, we started our own spending diets last Spring and the savings have helped us a ton as we travel around the country meeting designers, finding inventory, and cool-hunting for the best clothes and accessories for our online store launching in August. All the ways we’ve saved money thanks to Anna’s influence would actually make a great post. But! We’re here to talk about some amazing summer party cocktails we love that you can make for around $20. To reduce the cost even more, simply remove the alcohol from each recipe. They’re cool, refreshing, and you can make enough drinks for a festive little party for just a Jackson.
Summer Cocktail/Mocktail #1: The Sweet & Tart Sparkler!
We made this pitcher of refreshing tangy goodness by mixing raspberry lemonade and prosecco, a fresh-tasting sparkling white wine from Italy. It’s easy to find a good bottle at the grocery store for under ten bucks. We also bought an assortment of berries and a lemon, and diced it all up to infuse the drink with even more flavor. Check your fridge to see what you have on hand before you run to the store to get some! This drink can, of course, is just as delicious if you replace the prosecco with sparkling water or soda. We always offer a non-alcoholic version for kids and driving guests!
Summer Cocktail #2: The Vanilla Fizz
Mix cake-flavored (or vanilla works, too!) vodka with your favorite lemon-lime soda (we used Sprite). For this drink, we also added a garnish of a strawberry, rice krispy square, and marshmallow on a skewer!
Summer Cocktail/Mocktail #3: Watermelon Crush!
This is a signature drink from Megan’s mom, and one of our all-time summer favorites. Dice a watermelon and freeze it overnight, then blend the pieces with lemonade and vodka (for the mocktail version, simply leave out the vodka). Check in your fridge–you could really mix any kind of juice with this one, or even use water. We can’t resist a good garnish–for this drink, we added frozen watermelon chunks and blueberries on a skewer.
Summer Cocktail #4: A Prosecco Lemon Pop!
Here’s another way to get some mileage out of that bottle of prosecco you bought for drink number one! Mix fresh lemons and a splash of lemonade with sparkling prosecco. For a 4th of July party, we soaked our lemons in food coloring overnight.
Summer Cocktail #5: Bomb Pop Blasts
This drink is vodka and sprite mixed, with a Bomb Pop mixer inside each glass. As the pop melts, it gives the drink some cool stripes and tastes delicious!
Summer Cocktail #6: Strawberry-Lemon Punch!
This is one of our favorite summer cocktails for sure because it’s inspired by the sherbet punch we used to get at school dances! We froze strawberry and lemon sorbet in fluted cups, and dropped each one into a glass of Sprite. You could just as easily add a scoop of sorbet and skip the freezing part, but we liked the fluted edges on the sorbet once we peeled the paper off. And by all means if you feel like an extra kick, spike the punch!
xo, meg + rah
Do you have a favorite cocktail or mocktail recipe? What inexpensive treats are you making for Fourth of July celebrations?
It’s possible that I’ve become a complete wuss when it comes to the heat. When it gets this hot (high 90s and into the 100s) I really want to just sit by our window AC unit and soak in the coolness, and it’s hard to get motivated to do much of anything if it means stepping foot outside.
Rather than venturing out into the heat my mind starts drifting into the “let’s go to the movies ALL DAY!” or “let’s go wander around the mall!” territory… both ideas that are totally not wallet-friendly because if I’m hanging out in a mall I’ll want to go shopping. Sometimes that’s just waay too much temptation.
Here are some budget friendly ideas that don’t involve running the AC non-stop, wandering around a tempting mall, or blowing your whole paycheck on marathon days at the movie theater (by the way, if you haven’t seen Moonrise Kingdom yet, you must!).
image by the culinary geek
Ideas for staying cool in the summer heat
1. Stand in the shower and run cool water over your feet There’s probably somescience backing this idea but all I know is this always helps to cool me down.
2. Sleep with a bag of ice near your head Having that much freezing cold near me when I’m trying to sleep in the heat is helpful. The ice bag is mobile and can be easily moved to the hottest area on your body. It’s especially nice on the back of the neck and forehead.
3. Cool down from the inside out Drink plenty of water. You’ll feel cooler if you’re hydrated. Drink at least 8 ounces of water every hour and add mint leaves, lime, or cucumber for added refreshment. Sales on popsicles and ice-cream usually run non-stop at the grocery store in the summer… a great (and tasty) way to cool down from the inside out.
4. Put your pillow case or PJ’s in the freezer before you go to bed Laying your head on a cold pillow case or pulling on chilly pajamas is a great cooling-down technique (a Facebook friend recommended the PJ’s in the freezer idea- such a great tip!).
5. Lay in an ice-cold bath Fill the tub with cold water and ice-cubes to get that core temp down.
6. Keep your blinds closed and add a layer of paper accordion-fold panels We live in a west-facing corner unit that gets blasted with sun all day long. In addition to keeping the blinds closed all day we added a layer of inexpensive paper accordion-fold blinds (approx. $10 for 7 large panels from the home repair store). They help to block the sun that much more and they’ve made a huge difference in the temperature!
7. Open the windows at night and place a bag of ice behind a fan This is another ideathat a Facebook friend told me about. I haven’t had a chance to try it yet but it sounds completely legit.
8. Visit the library or museum These two places are air-conditioned and won’t be as tempting as spending the day wandering around the mall.
We used to make these all the time as kids. They’re quick, super easy, and best of all- the ingredients are usually always already in the cupboards!
How to make Graham Creams:
1. Combine 1 tablespoon melted butter, 1 tablespoon milk, 1 teaspoon of vanilla, and 1/2 teaspoon of water in small bowl
2. Stir in 1/2 teaspoon of cocoa powder and 1 1/4 cup powdered sugar
3. Mix until smooth
4. Spread the frosting onto the graham crackers
This recipe will make approximately 12 single (as pictured above) graham cracker cocoa frosting cookies. Also, I like my frosting thick but you can add more water or more powdered sugar to your own consistency preferences.
Total time: 15 minutes.
Do you have a sweet recipe that uses ingredients commonly found in the pantry?
Style is something that comes up often when you’re trying to get (or stay) out of debt. Especially if you’re used to running off the mall to buy whatever you want or if you’re used to hopping on the computer and shopping online. Finding ways to make your old clothes feel fresh can feel like a challenge but if you think about it creatively you can easily make those old outfits that you’re sick of feel fresh and new again.
That’s where scarves come in.
When I was younger I always heard the “wear a scarf” tip I always thought it was such an antiquated idea. It was like, look, I’m not 75 so I’m not wearing a scarf, and I don’t care how amazing you think they are.
But… never say never, right? Times have changed and now, now I’m all about scarves. (Or, maybe I’m just old now. eeee…. ?)
Here’s why I like scarves:
They’re inexpensive (usually) and can easily be found at thrift or 2nd hand shops
There are so many ways to wear them
They can quickly and inexpensively add interest to an otherwise boring outfit
They can be used to cover overgrown roots to get more longevity out of a dye job (see this related post on how to cover up roots)
You can wear them on your head, around your neck, around your waist, on your bag… so many possibilities
They can be worn in all seasons
They make you look like you have more money than you do
They make me feel fancy
Here are some examples of how I like to wear scarves.
Gifts. Saving money, living frugally, and not spending excessively can be a struggle around this time of year. The societal expectations to give (and at all costs) are all over the place! Don’t get deeper into debt (or back into debt) to give material objects to others.
Have you heard about Buy Nothing Day? It was made popular by AdBusters magazine. You don’t have to participate in the mass day of consumption that we all know as Black Friday. You don’t have to incur debt this season. There are lots of ways to show love, appreciation, and be in the Holiday spirit besides busting your account.
Next week will kick off my DIY Gift Guides! Because this year I’ll be making ALL of the gifts I give. If you aren’t a DIY-er then do the next best thing and support local and/or independent businesses.
I’ll be participating in Buy Nothing Day. What will you be doing on Friday? If you say you’ll be at the mega store sales I won’t judge;)
Last night I was flipping through the September issue of Glamour magazine. I borrowed it from the gym. I feel okay about borrowing magazines from the gym because I always bring them back and if I happen to have some old magazines I bring those back with the original ones I borrowed. It’s kind of like the library but without the official “check-it out” thing. Can you tell I feel kind of bad about this because here this is the 4th sentence about it.
Hey, I bring ‘em back!
Back to the story. So, last night I was flipping through the magazine and saw this little tip that said, “… try waking up your face with a scrub of your just used coffee grounds. It’s like beauty recycling!”
There used to be a lady on my bus that convinced Starbucks to give her all of their grounds from the days brewing (that’s a ton). She picked them up at the end of the day, toting them home with her to be used later on in her garden (apparently they’re good for composting and fertilizer too). The grounds were transported in doubled-up brown paper bags. Paper bags are good, but not when wet things are involved. So, the grounds would leak their remaining moistness onto the floor of the bus. The trail of coffee juice moved as the bus moved, wiggled as the bus wiggled, and it touched peoples shoes.
Crazy stuff always happens on the bus. Didn’t you know!?
This morning I decided I was going to utilize the magazine tip, and into action it went.
This weekend is going to be fun! The Clothing Swap is tomorrow night, and I’m getting all sorts of things ready for it. Above is a picture is of the banner that I’m making with supplies I have laying around the house. I’m using an old photograph for the letters because it is a little thicker than regular paper and I love the colors in the image. I found a template for the letters on Dollar Store Crafts (lots of great crafting ideas there) but I’m not doing the “jointed” part (just cut those right off) and I’m using some yarn that is in my husbands knitting bag (yes, his knitting bag. and. it’s amazing). The banner will be used in the Photobooth for some extra cuteness.
This week for Gettin’ Guesty Jennifer Spencer who writes the blog How Nicely I Burn has written an essay about how she turned some elbow grease into some cash! This is my kind of idea!
Woot. Woot! Booyah. Hoot Hoot. Holla. You go girl! etc… ;)
Please help me welcome Jennifer Spencer!
image courtesy of jennifer spencer
We’ve all had that moment. The moment when you realize that you can’t keep plopping down your credit card every time you want a new DVD or deluxe bacon cheeseburger. For me, a 27-year old twice college graduate, that moment occurred much later than it should have. I was already in $8,000 worth of credit card debt and $48,000 in student loan debt when I decided to take a trip to the Oregon Coast for four days. It was in celebration of the new job I hadn’t even started yet. By then I was only a week without income but considering my trip cost me over $500, that may have not been the smartest move. *cue sarcasm*
The moment my debt really hit me though was when I realized that my trusty reserve line for my bank account (aka my last defense against the wolf at the door) was soon to be no more. We all know that feeling when the truth finally sinks in. Panic, terror and the need to flee; basically, a Godzilla movie. However, I took some comfort in the fact that I was beginning my new job soon that paid well enough. Alas, my comfort was soon shattered. During the months at my new job, I had to sell everything I could on Craigslist just to stay afloat. I even sold my precious collectable record albums that literally made me cry to hand over. As painful as it was to see my possessions picked off one by one by Craigslist vultures, it taught me an important lesson: I don’t need any of this stuff. When was the last time I even watched an episode of Oz, despite buying the entire six seasons? I realized that I was an impulse spender. I would say to myself, “I liked that scene where Ben Stiller made a joke” and then end up buying the DVD.
However, most of my debt incurred from spending money on others. I, like many others, used things to buy people’s affection. “Maybe she will like me more if I buy her that slotted spoon she wants.” Luckily, those days are over but the remnants (aka debt) still haunts me. I don’t want to spend the rest of my life living with Casper the Financial Ghost so my family and I starting thinking outside the box. Here is one idea:
Destroy your debt with some elbow grease!
My wise mother gave me a great idea on how to help support myself without feeling like a mooch: clean her garage! Sounds like slave labor, I know, but here’s the catch: whatever I found, I could sell.
I wound up with dozens of items I promptly put on Craigslist and have made over $500 AND I’m still selling things! So ask your family, your friends, your neighbors, etc. if you can clean their garage for free in exchange for selling anything they don’t want. Craigslist works great for people like me who live in an apartment sans garage. It’s a win-win situation. They get clean and you get the green.
Jennifer Spencer •THANK YOU• for being a part of And Then She Saved!
If you have something to say on a topic related to personal finance or getting out of debt send me an email at: Hello@AndThenSheSaved.com to be considered as a Gettin’ Guesty columnist. xo Anna
Recently, I stumbled upon this great crepe recipe over at Vanilla & Lace. I’ve always thought that crepes were exotic and un-touchable since I thought you needed a certain type of “crepe pan” to make them and also I thought they were inherently expensive because they just sound so fancy. Fancy is expensive right?
So, I just love how Vanilla & Lace explains this recipe because it worked like a complete charm and I liked the recipe even more once I realized that I could make these fancies using stuff I already had in my cupboards (except for the Nutella- that was a splurge) with a pan I already owned!
I re-named them Cupboard Crepes. They were awesome! Enjoy!
This is a DIY (do-it-yourself) post for those of you who have been tempted to buy Dry Shampoo. While this (admittedly) isn’t the most electrifying post I’ve ever written I thought it might be of interest to a few of you. Okay, maybe ONE of you will like it. Okay, if not even one of you likes it then just peruse the NEW Top Posts section over there. Yes, right there in the upper right area of the blog over there. I worked on this new section over the weekend so maybe you’ll like something there and if not come back tomorrow because I’ll probably have something totally prolific to say then.
If you haven’t heard of this Dry Shampoo thing it’s supposed to fluff up your hair, give it volume (it does that well especially for fine hair) and basically it supposed to save you time since you don’t have to wash your hair after working out and it’s handy if you wake up late and are a big grease head and can’t wear a hat to work because it’s just not a wear-a-hat-to-work-kind-of-job then it’s good for fixing an ick head. Dry Shampoo is one of those “little purchases” that add up over time and I would’ve definitely bought some bottles of it in my days-of-debt, denial and over-spending (since I work hard and wanted to buy what I wanted with my hard-earned dough). Actually, who am I trying to kid, I DID buy some right before the Spending Fast started. See this post.
Dry shampoo is basically baby powder in an aerosol spray can. Yes. That’s all it is. People buy this stuff. I bought that stuff. Ugh. Stupid stuff that adds up to a lot of debt. When I think about the stupid junk I used to buy, the stuff that got me into my debt, I can’t help but cringe. You know one of those “Wwhaaaatdiddd I doooo?!!?” deep gut cringes? One of those. (Luckily, little things add up to a lot in the other direction too- towards debt payoff!)
I think buying dry shampoo is silly but I’ve bought it and a lot of other things like that because on some sub-conscious level it’s easy to be sold on these things. I WANTED to believe that these types of things would help me somehow, make me prettier, awesome-er, perfect-er. (I still want to believe magazine ads and commercials sometimes. They make it so easy to believe them.)
You know, I really hoped that these things would be the EXACT thing I was looking for. And sometimes, it seems that the only point in purchasing these things was to prove to myself that I could buy something a dumb as dry shampoo if I wanted to. And while these weren’t my proudest moments on some level it was satisfying to know that I could get what I wanted when I wanted it even if it meant getting myself further into debt and after I got to a certain level of debt I started saying to myself “Aw, screw it. I’ll always have this debt so I might as well enjoy myself!”
We know how that story ended: $23,605.10 in debt.
Homemade Dry Shampoo Recipe/Technique:
Get yourself some generic baby powder or cornstarch (maybe you already have some in your bathroom cabinet?), sprinkle some on your scalp/hair (not on the ends), fluff it up, use a brush to spread it out.
Poof, fluff, sprinkle and repeat.
I’ve learned that it’s best to do this at night (if possible) so you end up looking less like you have on a powdered George Washington wig. Looking like the 1st president is not a look that I like to go after often. I like to save that for special occasions.
My name is Katie, and like many of you, I fell victim to societal pressures to spend. I read fashion magazines and saw cute spring clothes that I just had to have. I bought a new phone because all my friends’ phones had video cameras and internet, and my old, normal phone seemed so old… and normal. I spent $20 on pretty measuring cups from Anthropologie (that now I’m too afraid to use because they cost $20). However, I realized that working 40 hours a week just to shop away all my paychecks didn’t make me a happier or more fulfilled person. Instead, that lifestyle led to a closet filled with clothes I never wear, too much credit card debt, and a plan to change it all.
how cute is she!?
I come from a long line of crafters- creative and imaginative people who made things instead of bought things. When I was a child, I couldn’t care less that my Halloween costume was homemade. In fact, I thought it was pretty cool. I cherished my glamorous Barbie mansion made from shoeboxes and painted popsicle stick furniture. And I will never forget the fun times we had creating something together- it made it way more special than just running over to the mall.
So I’m on a mission now to follow in my ancestors’ creative footsteps. I’m going to rid myself of bad shopping habits by putting my sewing and crafting skills to good use. When I see something I want to purchase, I will instead just try to make it myself. Nowadays, it is so easy to just hand over a credit card that we forget how fun, simple, and inexpensive the Do-It-Yourself version can be.
Let’s take Anthropologie, for example. I swoon over their mix of rustic, eclectic, and elegant styles, but their prices are much too high for your average recessionista. $128 for a pillow? I could make two student loan payments with that. Or buy a month’s worth of groceries. Or 128 bottles of Snapple.
Since we are all on our own missions to stop spending and get out of debt, I’m going to show you how to make a pretty, Anthropologie-inspired gift for a fraction of the Anthropologie price.
Home is Where the Heart is Pillow
What you will need:
- ½ yard fabric with a cute print, or a pre-sewn, blank 14” x 14” pillowcase
- Sewing machine (optional- you can also use a pre-sewn pillowcase as mentioned above)
- 1 skein (8 meters) of embroidery floss in the color of your choosing
*Note: I purchased all the supplies for this pillow at a craft store for about $11.
And the Steps:
1) Iron fabric flat.
2) From the fabric, cut out one square that is 15 ½” on all sides. Then cut out two rectangles 15 ½” x 10”.
3) Cut out America template. Tape the cutout in the center of the square piece of fabric.
4) Carefully trace around the outside of the cutout with your pencil or invisible ink marker. (Once you embroider over the lines, you won’t be able to see the pencil marks).
5) Place the area with the design inside the embroidery hoop to hold the fabric tight.
6) Take a piece of your embroidery floss. Each piece is made up of 6 smaller strands. Split the piece of floss in half so that you are holding three strands in each hand. Thread your needle with three strands and set the other three aside.
7) Even if you have never embroidered before, this is a piece of cake! You are just following the lines that you traced with the embroidery floss. Poke the threaded needle from the back of the fabric to the front, then back down about 1/8 of an inch from where you started. Then make the second stitch, moving the needle from back to front about 1/8 of an inch from the first stitch. Bring the needle back down right where you ended the previous stitch, so that the stitches connect in a line. This is called a backstitch. Continue these stitches all the way around the traced area.
8) Make a heart cutout from your red felt and place it over the state you love! Sew in place by making a simple “X” with your embroidery floss.
9) Set the square piece aside and place the two rectangle pieces next to each other with the printed sides facing down. Along the long side facing the middle, fold the fabric back ½ an inch and pin. Do this on both pieces. Sew along this seam on each piece, removing pins as you go.
10) Place the embroidered piece facing right side up. With printed sides facing down, line up the unfinished long sides of the rectangle pieces with the right and left sides of the square, and the hemmed sides facing the middle (these pieces will overlap). Pin the pieces in place. Note: the printed sides of the fabric should be facing each other, not the outside.
11) Sew around entire border of pillow. Turn fabric right side out and gently poke the corners with the eraser of your pencil. Topstitch around the border of the square to create a finished look.
12) Insert pillow form, and you’re all done!
cute, cute, cute
Katie Naugle from Hazel and Mare ● THANK YOU ●
for being a part of And Then She Saved!
If you would like to be considered as a contributor for Gettin’ Guesty send me an email at: Hello@AndThenSheSaved.com
Does anyone else have a few hole-y socks tucked into their sock drawers? I have a few for sure! All of a sudden I’ll feel the heel of my foot sticking to the inside of my shoe and then I know that I’ve got a hole in the sock. The sticky foot is a sure sign indeed.
Darning socks seems like a bit of an urban legend to me. I don’t think I’ve even met anyone who’s ever darned a single sock and if I did well, I take that back, maybe I HAVE met someone who darned a sock and maybe we just didn’t discuss it.
“Hey, guess what I did on Monday night? I darned my socks AND IT WAS GREAT!”
Nope. Doesn’t happen.
But, that doesn’t mean sock darning is any less useful or money saving.
I’ve got some socks I’m going to be darning up here any minute so now you can say you met someone who’s darned one. Where I would’ve tossed those socks in the trash in the past now they are getting new life.
This handy tutorial found over at Craft Zine tells us how to get the job done.
Over the weekend I got to the bottom of some lipstick sticks. I know, my life is pretty exciting over here. The drama and excitement is pretty hard to handle. I’m trying to contain all the craziness.
Before the Spending Fast/Diet if I got to the bottom of a lipstick I would just toss it into the trash because well, all the lipstick was gone. Now, things are a little different, a lot different. Since I’m always on the look out for ways to save more, extend the life of things and “make do with” I saw the end of these lipsticks not as the end but as a chance to get crafty.
Did you know that there is a little chunk of lipstick at the bottom of the lipstick stick that is basically a little pot of gold at the end of the rainbow? It’s just a little nugget waiting to be found. There is literally a 1/4 inch of lipstick that sits there anchoring the stick of lipstick to the bottom of the stick.
I went to a store that sells lots of containers and I got this empty itty bitty plastic tub that was 76¢. Then, I scoped out the nuggety lipstick goodness (with a couple of toothpicks grouped together) and into the little container it went. I put a bit of Vaseline in there too and swirled it all up and looky there- semi-homemade lip gloss!
Below is an email from a reader. It touches on something that I don’t think I’ve actually addressed on my blog so I thought it might be good to touch on it now.
I was wondering, how did you feel about *paying* for repairs to clothing/shoes/accessories? Was this part of the spending fast? Is this now part of the spending diet? I’m considering my diet, and I think it may need a “repair” allowance….or an “alteration” allowance.
I think spending a small amount on money for say RIT dye to dye clothes is great- it’s a way to extend the life of items with a very minimum amount of money. I would look into ways to try to repair the clothing, accessories and/or shoes yourself. If you can’t do it yourself I’d evaluate if you truly need the item. Would it be cheaper to replace the item entirely? Do you even need the item? Do you even like the item? Do you have another similar item that could replace it? Getting soles of shoes fixed is such a great thing. Cobblers have gone completely out of style but are great. So, I think fix the item if you determine that it’s truly needed. I’d avoid doing an allowance for as long as possible if you decide to do one at all and evaluate each item individually.
What do you all think?
Also, when is an item past the point of repair? Sometimes, I keep pushing the limit and then wonder if I look half-homeless because of it. When is it time to concede and replace an item!? I need your help.
Valentine’s Day is right around the bend and that means that the pressure will be on from loved ones to do something for them. Besides, it’s a good time to show you care and how much you’re in love with your sweetie even if the point of Valentine’s Day gets a bit lost in all that commercialization. No matter… it’s fun to eat sweets and look at hearts and see red and pink and white and doilies and get some extra cuddling in.
Last year, I was tempted to just be a full-blown dead beat Valentine and just OWN it. I ended up bailing on that idea when reality set in and I decided I didn’t want to be a total a-hole. I ended up making my husband a sugar cookie shaped into a heart that I proceed to decorate obnoxiouslyI mean, awesomely. Here’s the link to that post.
Since I don’t have a kiddo (just nieces and nephews that I am completely smitten with). The below list is focused on ideas for adults. I was thinking about what I liked when I was a kid and what I would have liked to get for V-Day when I was a little youngin. Here’s what I remember liking: doing crafts, eating sweets, being told I’m loved. I guess I haven’t changed too much since all of that still sounds awesome.
Free or nearly free ideas for your love. Mix and match. Do one or a couple or all.
Go through your closet/house and find things to sell. Trade in your clothes at Scout: Dry Goods & Trade or a similar store for money or items from their shop. Pawn other items you’re done with at a pawn shop and use your newly acquired money to get your sweet heart something.
Cook a romantic dinner using pre-existing ingredients from your cupboards
Make your Valentine breakfast- again using ingredients or mainly ingredients you already have
Give a full-body massage
Straight up tell them why you dig them
Make 365 reasons why you love them and give them 1 a day for the whole year
Decorate your place with hearts you cut out of computer paper. (Here’s a link for some fancy heart cutouts if you wanna get fancy like that. Here’s a link to another paper decoration idea here.)
Swap houses/apartments with your friends for the night. You have a date at their house while they have a date at yours.
Have a movie marathon and make ice cream sundaes with all the fixin’s
Clean the entire house for them
Send steamy texts
Make homemade chocolate-covered strawberries: 1) Melt a package of semi-sweet chocolate chips in a double boiler and add a small amount of oil 2) Remove from heat and quickly dip the strawberries into the chocolate 3) Place on wax paper and refrigerate for several hours until chocolate is firm
If you’re hitched: read your wedding vows to each other/watch your wedding video/look at your wedding album
If you like giving cards there are free versions you can print out online (here’s a link and another one here for some cute ones) and if you want a “real” card check out the dollar store
Make them a mix CD of songs you love that you think they too might love
Call in sick together, then cuddle and watch movies/trashy day-time TV all day
Make them a cake
Make them cookies
Look through photographs of when you 1st got together. Have 1 printed and put in a frame (perfect re-gift opportunity with the frame).
Compliment them when others are around
Decide to give them an ongoing Valentine gift. This is where you do a little nice thing for them each day for an extended period of time. For example: listening intently, picking up a piece of candy for them, do something unexpected for them, give them your full attention when they talk, forgive quickly, add something they like to the grocery list and surprise them with it. Tell them what you’re up to or not. They might be shocked by the extreme niceness you’re dishing out. This will make them feel loved and appreciated which is the goal of Valentine’s Day if you ask me.
Reminisce about how you met
Send them a secret admirer letter. When it arrives – you know nothing about it. They will be both flattered and maybe a little freaked out, but hopefully mainly flattered.
Give your Valentine a homemade spa night. Face mask, massage, mani/pedi, scalp massage. Guys love this even if they won’t admit it.
Get naked. Proceed. Ewww. TMI.
What do you do for your loved ones that is free or costs very little?
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