June 30, 2015

How to: Simple Paper Flowers

It's probably not surprising to most of you that I have had a wedding-themed Pinterest board since long before Matt and I got engaged because...well... isn't that why Pinterest was invented?

Paper FlowersAnyway, since I now have a good reason to put it to use, I've been pinning wedding DIYs like it's my (second) job. Mostly, I'm on the lookout to make our very small wedding budget stretch to incorporate all the things I want without being wasteful. I'd much rather spend the money we have allotted on a good photographer and food and drinks for our guests than on frilly decor.

Of the frilly decor items, the one that particularly grinds my gears is the thought of is spending $2500 on flowers (which I read is the average). The very possibility that a bridal bouquet could cost upwards of $75-100 is insane to me. Flowers die. Usually within days, if not hours, and carrying them about only for them to be put down somewhere seems like a ridiculous waste of money.

So, a few weeks ago, I stumbled on this tutorial that made coffee filter flowers look easy and like something that would make pretty decor for our wedding without breaking the bank. They're based off of a Martha Stewart design and you can print the templates to help you out. These flowers utilize the white cone coffee filters and you can buy 800 of them on Amazon for less than $20. Naturally this was the solution to my flower conundrum.

June 26, 2015

Taking a Moment

I have a little experimental project in mind for this weekend that I am going to attempt. It could be a total flop, but I'm looking forward to sharing my results with you all.

In the mean time however, I just wanted to take a moment to rejoice in the Supreme Court's ruling on same-sex marriages this morning. Since Matt and I got engaged, we have been able to celebrate and be excited without a single reservation or concern for which state we were allowed to be married in.

I am so completely thrilled for the LGBT community as this day has been a long time coming. There are an endless array of issues in the world that make it a scary and dangerous place. Love between individuals is not, nor should it be considered, one of those issues. It seems only fair and appropriate to me that each person is entitled the right to commit themselves to their mate if they choose, regardless of what gender or orientation they are, and I celebrate in that our state governments no longer have a say in who we are allowed to love.

Justice Anthony Kennedy wrote the opinion for the majority voters, and I could not have said it better myself:

"No union is more profound than marriage, for it embodies the highest ideals of love, fidelity, devotion, sacrifice, and family. In forming a marital union, two people become something greater than once they were. As some of the petitioners in these cases demonstrate, marriage embodies a love that may endure even past death."

"It would misunderstand these men and women to say they disrespect the idea of marriage. Their plea is that they do respect it, respect it so deeply that they seek to find its fulfillment for themselves. Their hope is not to be condemned to live in loneliness, excluded from one of civilization’s oldest institutions. They ask for equal dignity in the eyes of the law. The Constitution grants them that right. (NY Times)

My warmest wishes and congratulations to all.

Also, I have now found a new favorite image on the internet (courtesy of HuffPost/Elise Foley). Please enjoy:


Happy Friday!

XOXO

June 21, 2015

Wall Bed Reveal!

It's like Christmas in July June! I am so excited to share this with you guys today. You'll remember I have mentioned the wall bed a handful of times (here and here and here and here) and it is finally, finally (FINALLY!!) finished.



I had intended to post about it last weekend. And then when that didn't pan out, I promised again (publicly!) that it would be up on Monday. And then it wasn't. ALL WEEK. I failed multiple days in a row. And it's totally Matt's fault.

We can't be mad at him though. Matt was an absolute wiz at all the planning, building, cutting, sawing, drilling, sanding, puttying, and otherwise-technical parts of the project. In fact, he pretty much did the whole thing himself. 

But I primed (with this oil based primer) and painted (with this in satin finish)! And added the little handles (from Home Depot). Priorities.

And then he unpainted - or rather: reapplied putty, sanded and repainted - a section because it was "bothering him". No matter. It's finally done.

All in all, the project cost a total of about $500, which seems like a lot, but compared to the pre-fab kits which run around $1800, I'd still say we made out on top.

June 9, 2015

Father's Day Gift Idea

I never know what to get my Dad for Father's Day.

He's one of the hardest people to shop for because, like most men, he already has everything he needs and if he doesn't have it, it's because it's too expensive to buy or build. I have also mentioned before that, like me, he has hoarding tendencies and every time I visit home I realize that his whole life is weighed down with stuff. It takes all my willpower not to throw every knick-knack everything away.

On top of that, with wedding planning going on Matt and I have tried to limit our spending to the bare minimum, and as weddings, birthdays, and general gift-giving holidays never seem to end, I'm buckling down to the quality vs. quantity mentality and trying to give gifts that matter.

This year dad might be getting the gift of Amazon Prime (which he accidentally signed up for at Christmas time, not realizing what it was or did). His online shopping presence has increased over the last few years, and I think it's something he can use, and save money with, without being hassled with a physical item taking up more of his space or time. And it just so happens that Amazon is running a promotion to donate $10 to the Movember Foundation for men's health research for every prime membership purchased between now and Father's Day. Amazon explains:

"This Father's Day, for every gift of Prime purchased beginning June 1st until June 21st, Amazon will donate $10 to the Movember Foundation to help deliver breakthrough research and support services focused on prostate cancer, testicular cancer, poor mental health, and physical inactivity.

Amazon will send your gift recipient an email on the day you choose, along with redemption instructions. The gift recipient can start their Prime membership right away. If the recipient is already a Prime member, the gift can be exchanged for an Amazon.com Gift Card. The one-year gift membership does not automatically renew."

Father's Day shopping? NAILED IT.
~ ~ ~

To give the gift of Amazon Prime and help support cancer research, visit Amazon here:
Give the Gift of Amazon Prime and $10 will be donated to Movember

June 6, 2015

How to: Frost Your Windows (for Privacy)

Last weekend I posted a picture of our (shiny, spectacular and NOT hunter green) front door and, not that I am biased or anything, but I think it looks great! What you can't see from the photo though, is that I also frosted the windows beside the door for privacy. Up until now (aka the whole last year) you can very clearly see into the house from the street - particularly when it's dark out, but during the day as well. Normally this isn't a problem, but sometimes without thinking, when I'm getting ready in the morning I will walk to the kitchen to make coffee in a sort of, half-dressed manner. Nothing rated "R" by any means, but enough that I don't think I want my neighbors, their kids, or their dogs checking me out.

June 3, 2015

Currently Reading Vol. 12-15

Books I Have Read Recently

(and Forgotten to Blog About)

12. Into Thin Air - Jon Krakauer 
A true account of the deadly 1996 summit of Everest that was very well worth the read. 

13. Dad Is Fat - Jim Gaffigan 
Hilarious - even for those of us who aren't sure we want children.

14. A Practical Wedding - Meg Keene 
Recommended by my dear friend Alex when I started panicking (a mere four days) after our engagement about how to accommodate and invite my big Yankee family to a small Southern wedding.

15. The Girl on the Train - Paula Hawkins
This one I'm just getting into, so I'll give you the synopsis:

"Rachel takes the same commuter train every morning. Every day she rattles down the track, flashes past a stretch of cozy suburban homes, and stops at the signal that allows her to daily watch the same couple breakfasting on their deck. She’s even started to feel like she knows them. “Jess and Jason,” she calls them. Their life—as she sees it—is perfect. Not unlike the life she recently lost.

And then she sees something shocking. It’s only a minute until the train moves on, but it’s enough. Now everything’s changed. Unable to keep it to herself, Rachel offers what she knows to the police, and becomes inextricably entwined in what happens next, as well as in the lives of everyone involved. Has she done more harm than good?"

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