Small Bathroom DIY (I’m So Excited!)

My rock star husband started working on fluffing up the powder room on our main floor, and I’m so stinkin’ excited about it! Remember when I shared how he encouraged me to dream big? Well, I started rounding up my “big” dreams for this tiny room over on Pinterest, and he’s started working on the trim work. The project’s still in process this week, but hopefully in the next few weeks I can show you the finished results.


We had just a basic powder room to start with – here in Ohio trim fancy trim work is hard to come by (although our home has more than some, it’s still not in most of the rooms like we were lucky enough to have in Alabama.) Because we had so much pretty molding there, we knew the minute we closed on this house it was something we’d like to add, and I’m so glad I have a husband who has the patience to work at it. (It is not as easy as it looks, but he stuck with it.  I keep telling him he’ll be an old pro by the time he finishes all the projects I have lined up for him!)

(Here’s the molding that was throughout our home in Alabama – he’s got quite a bit of work ahead of him! See how we furnished that dining room ~ including curtains ~ for $150. One of my favorite projects ever.) ;)

Here’s the before picture of the bathroom before he started (I was in a hurry and just snapped these with my iPhone, sorry they’re pretty blurry but you get the idea!).

To add bulk to the molding, James put in traditional crown molding at the top of the ceiling, then added an extra piece of trim 4 inches below the molding, and painted the drywall in between.


It gives the appearance of being incredibly thick molding, but saves on material, and was the same way that our molding was hung down South.

I found this wallpaper over on Amazon (I haven’t hung wallpaper in years, but just love the look of it in a small bathroom!) It will go above the wainscoting we’re adding to the bottom half of the room (hopefully will look like these when it’s done.)

Already I’m in love with that paper, and can’t wait to see it all finished! 

Here’s what we’ve spent so far:

  • Trim wood = $51
  • Nails & caulk = $10
  • Wallpaper = $96
  • Total = $157


If I’d chosen to use paint we could have saved a bunch (and I’m betting I could have found more discounted paper if I’d looked harder for it, but this was easy and during this season of our lives I’m going for easy!) What helped so much is that my husband has been collecting tools as birthday and Christmas gifts since we were in our first apartment eighteen years ago, which definitely keeps our cost down.


So, that’s all for now! I absolutely can’t wait to see it all done, and am so glad I have a husband who enjoys this stuff with me. (He’s always happier when he has a project in the works – I’m so lucky!)


Are you working on any fun projects in your home? I’d love to hear what you’re working on! And, if you’re going through a difficult season in your life right now, I can’t tell you how much just dreaming about what we really want has helped us in our move. Check this out if you need some encouragement in that area too. ;)

Love seeing penny pinched decorating ideas? Here are a few more to check out . . .

I’d love for you to join me over on Pinterest (I love that place!)  If you have a blog and have done a little fluffing in your home, I’d love to see it, so leave your link in the comments section. Also, if there’s a craft you’ve seen on a website that you’re hoping to make, feel free to share that link as well (I’m always looking for new ideas!)


See previous Friday Fluff Up projects and ideas . . . and Happy Fluffing!


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Ohio State Fair Fun

We had so much fun this week at the Ohio State Fair, and I thought you all might enjoy a peek! We haven’t gone to a state fair since living in Kentucky almost ten years ago, so it was fun to check out the food, rides, and (my favorite!) the exhibits. (I’m telling you what, next year I’m coming up with a recipe to enter in the fair – my family’s already debating what they want me to bake so that at least once a month for the next year they get to test it!)

I will tell you that the fair is far from penny pinched. If you have little ones, try to steer far from the rides (which is tough to do!), because just the exhibits are neat to see and don’t cost anything more than the fair’s admission. (We found discounted tickets at our local Kroger store.) We ended up purchasing $45 in ride tickets which was more than enough for my kids (thankfully they’re not big riders), and I kind of wish we encouraged them to just pick a ride or two, because they really would have been content with that.


My husband and I have always loved visiting the fair for the people-watching, to see what kind of ridiculous food’s being concocted, and I love checking out the cake competitions and handwork items. It’s just fun to see what people can do!  Okie dokie . . . here’s what we saw ~ on what had to be the prettiest night I’ve ever seen in July. ;)


 Tried out Fried Buckeyes – they were so good! Fried Grilled Cheese . . . um, not so good ;)

Noticed the Sloppy Donuts ~  yikes ;)

My Reagan who’s always been fascinated by pigs (hence the pig overalls her Uncle Jack got for her) got to see her first piggies up close and personal. 

After petting this one, she said “They’re so sort ~ that makes me love piggies even more!”

 Then we saw this monster boar~ at 1440 pounds, it was not what we think of when Reagan says she loves piggies!

We also checked out a few pigs and bunnies (and made those goofy faces for some reason?)

Saw huge tractors . . .

and a few little ones too.

Checked out some fantastic train sets, 

milked Buckeye Bessie,

 and loved seeing the cookies, cakes and mode towns on display.

My son is convinced I’m making him that cake next year for his birthday (I promise to post pics when I do . . . ) :)

 And I loved looking at the quilts and handiwork on display.

All in all it was a fun but-not-so-penny-pinched afternoon, and we loved seeing all Ohio has to offer! Hope you’ve been able to do something extra fun this week with your family too. ;)

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Pantry Organizing {At The Dollar Tree}


I’m so excited about today’s not-all-that-exciting Friday Fluff Up! But, every time I open my pantry door things are so nice and peaceful, and I’m loving that. ;)


(Clearly that wasn’t the case when I started . . .)

In our old house we had a huge set of deep cabinets as our pantry, and I couldn’t imagine we’d ever be able to fit as much in our new pantry. But, with a little organizing I was able to get even more in than I ever expected! My husband added an extra shelf way up high last weekend . . .

perfect for things like our bread machine, iced tea maker, and some of the kids crafting stuff that I like to keep in the kitchen.

We had Dollar Tree bins that I’d used in our last house to organize our play room as well as a few more I found here at our store yesterday to organize most of the items we had – goodness I love the Dollar Tree for organizing on the cheap!

I’m still using a plain cardboard magazine file that my kids brought home from school several years ago to store our pasta in (I love how easy that makes things!)

And am tickled to have a spot for school supplies close by.

But the thing I’m most excited about is there’s now room on the floor to (easily) store our donation bag. We didn’t have space before for that in our pantry, so I was constantly hauling it back to our guest bedroom closet until it was time to donate everything. I’m tickled to have an easy place to store stuff in easy reach!

Do you have any other tips on organizing your pantry? When I went yesterday our Dollar Tree had a ton of great organizing items, so this would be a great way to save if you’ve got some organizing to do too! And, if your pantry could use a little tidying, determine to tackle that over the next few weeks. I promise you’ll be so glad you did. ;)


I’d love for you to join me over on Pinterest (I love that place!)  If you have a blog and have done a little fluffing in your home, I’d love to see it, so leave your link in the comments section. Also, if there’s a craft you’ve seen on a website that you’re hoping to make, feel free to share that link as well (I’m always looking for new ideas!)


See previous Friday Fluff Up projects and ideas . . . and Happy Fluffing!


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Mod Podge Monogram


My girls and I had so much fun fluffing up their bathroom this week with Mod Podge monogram letters! I’ve always thought a jack-and-jill bathroom for them would be so fun, so when my husband picked this house where they had their rooms joined by a bath I was pretty excited to fluff it up.  (They sleep so that they can see each other through the bathroom each night – I love that!)

When we were picking colors for our new house I stuck with Sherwin Williams Rice Grain throughout most of the house, and picked this Sherwin Williams Sea Salt in our office and dining room, our bedroom, and their bedrooms and bathroom. I love the Sea Salt color, and almost wish I’d painted it throughout the entire house!


Starting with basically good bones for this room made my job way more penny pinched. (If you’ve got a bathroom that needs some TLC, just a little paint on the walls and even the cupboards can make such a difference!)

Here’s our before pic (taken from my iPhone so that I could stand far enough away!)

And here’s the after picture, taken this morning again from my phone (the light was bad, but you get the idea!)

Other than the expense of the shutters (we had those put in this week and love them, they’re not all that penny pinched but it’s one of those reasons clipping coupons is worth it to me!), the only other things we changed were adding a few fun crafts. Here’s what we did . . .

At Hobby Lobby, we stocked up on basic supplies to make the monogram letters for the walls. Here’s what we used (I had most of it already at home which definitely helped my cost, but a lot of it goes so far!):

  • Mod Podge
  • White paint so the letters would be white on the sides of the initial 
  • Large wooden letters $9.09 each after 30% off sale at Hobby Lobby
  • Foam Paint Brushes
  • Paper plates for paint
  • Scrapbooking paper (we used this pack - on sale 50% off at Hobby Lobby for $9.99)
  • Large ribbon (we ended up only using the Chevron ribbon pictured above – on sale 50% off at Hobby Lobby for $1.99)
  • Total = $30.16, and I’ll have plenty of scrapbooking paper and ribbon leftover to use for other projects!)
After the girls painted the letters, I traced the letters onto the back side of scrapbook paper so that we could cut out the paper. 

 (I chose a few coordinating papers and then lined them up prior to cutting.)

Once the paper was cut, we double checked to make sure it fit before using mod-podge to adhere it to the initial

Then the girls covered their letters in mod podge

(this was their favorite part) ;)

Then we glued the paper down and let it dry before gluing the ribbon in the middle 

I used some extra scrapbook paper to make these simple pictures to hang ~ I already had the white frames (those frames that I bought years ago on sale were the best purchase!)


All done, and so much better for just a few dollars! 


Have you done any fun (frugal) fluffing lately in your home? I’d love to hear about it – leave a comment to share! You can also join me over on Pinterest (I love that place!) to find more penny pinched decorating ideas.



See previous Friday Fluff Up projects and ideas . . . and Happy Fluffing!

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The Friday Fluff Up: Our Breakfast Nook Gets A (tiny) Facelift


I’m so excited to share the first room that’s done (at least for now) in our home! You all know I love pretty things, so having a corner of our home that just feels a wee bit finished makes this momma feel good. (Note, I am not a decorator at all, so I’m sure there are things that aren’t right here but I’m okay with it!)


When we moved, I really thought we’d think about getting a new kitchen table and chairs (I love this set that we found on clearance years ago at Lane furniture, but it’s taken a beating from my kids over the years!) However, once we moved in and set the room up, I decided that for now the kitchen table is just fine, we just needed to change out the rug and a few of the decorating items around it.


I’d gotten the rug in the picture above at Maple Rugs in Scottsboro (if you’re in North Alabama and need a rug, you’ve got to check them out), but it was too small for the area, and much darker than what I wanted. 



So, when I saw this rug a few weeks ago on our Cincinnati trip (it was at the Frontgate Outlet), I knew it was perfect! It was a sample rug, and cost right around $120, which while not the most penny pinched deal ever, sure wasn’t a bad price for a rug that large. (It’s an 8′x10′ rug though, and is priced at $229 online, so I’m pleased with my deal!) The only thing bad about it is my (very) messy eaters – so far I’ve had success cleaning up spills with this homemade carpet cleaner but I sure wish I had found something a wee bit darker!


The best change we made was this lamp in the corner (I’m so much happier with it!) It originally had this shade on it, but at the Ballard Design Outlet I fell in love with the blue shade above (on sale for $21 ~ had been $69.)  I grabbed it but knew I needed to update the base of the lamp, so grabbed a can of spray paint yesterday at Hobby Lobby and in about five minutes that project was done.

(One good thing about having no grass outside? You can paint right out your back door without having to do any prep work!) ;)

Here are a few other things I added and pictures of the room . . .

Hobby Lobby had this print on sale for $14 - perfect, don’t you think? The piggy salt & pepper shakers are my daughters’ – the girl loves her pigs and I think they’re pretty cute. ;)

I just re-arranged a few pillows we already have (I’m not sure those will stay, but it’s a start)

(We’re supposed to get landscaping that will hide those electric boxes you see in the window below as well as the house going in next door today – I’m so hoping they get here because it will help out our view so much!) 

Added the large blue plate in the corner (that made such a difference – on sale $20 at Hobby Lobby yesterday too)

Of course, the lamp (a friend told me a few days ago about a cord concealer you can find at Lowe’s – I’ve got to check it out!)

 And we had this chalkboard in our old house – so we just hang it up and my girls did the decorating since I’m no chalkboard artist like my friend Julie is ;)

Here’s the grand total of what I spent to fluff up the room (thankfully we re-used what we had already, which definitely helped):


  • Rug $120 at Frontgate Outlet
  • Spray paint for lamp $4
  • New lamp shade $21
  • Dream picture $14
  • Large plate wall hanging $10
  • Total = $169


Okie dokie folks, if you’ve got something just begging for a can of spray paint, I’m challenging you this weekend to go tackle that project (you can do it!) And if you’ve done any fun fluffing in your home recently, I’d love to hear about it. ;)

This post is linked to Living Well Spending Less Thrifty Thursday – thanks for the opportunity to link up!  I’d love for you to join me over on Pinterest (I love that place!)  If you have a blog and have done a little fluffing in your home, I’d love to see it, so leave your link in the comments section. Also, if there’s a craft you’ve seen on a website that you’re hoping to make, feel free to share that link as well (I’m always looking for new ideas!)
See previous Friday Fluff Up projects and ideas . . . and Happy Fluffing!


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How To Make Life More Liveable

Time for a random rambling today ~ pull up a chair and pour a glass of sweet tea – this one just might take awhile. :)


As I shared last week, this move has been not-so-easy on our family (or on me.) Thankfully though, this last week things have eased up a bit, and I know with time we’ll find our place here too.  In the midst of it though, there have been things that I’ve noticed have made life a little more liveable each day. The reality is, we all struggle through difficult things in life ~ whether it be a move, an illness, parenting struggles, or the death of someone we love dearly. 


Life (at times) is hard. There’s just no way around it. But, choosing to do a few certain things have helped ease a little stress here, and maybe they’ll be helpful for you too.

1. Get dressed, pray, exercise (even if only for a few minutes) and shine your sink, every single day. I don’t know where the magic is in these tricks, but they really do work ~ promise. ;)


2. Skype, call, or text a friend. I’ve so missed a few friends from home, but have checked in with them through Skype, by sending a quick text, or calling them while folding laundry. I can’t tell you how much fun I had skyping a friend video of our new home (she even gave me decorating tips while I walked through the house), and just a simple one-sentence text to another friend really brightened my day. It’s amazing what simply connecting with real people who care for you can do to lift your spirits!


3.  If you need to, do some tidying. Y’all, last week when I just about lost it, my husband came home and saw me in one mess of an office, and knew something had to be done. I kept telling him that since we didn’t have anywhere for most of the items to go until we had bookshelves, there was no point in tidying so I just needed to live with it. (It may be months or longer before we get those bookshelves as I’m trying to come up with a perfect plan – clearly spending hours each day in an office which is a disaster is not a great plan!)

He enlisted the help of our kids, and in less than 30 minutes the entire room was cleared out to storage in the basement. I had no idea how much the clutter was bothering me, but goodness just having a tidy (albeit empty!) spot to work in has drastically reduced my stress level.  If you’ve got some clutter in your life that’s making a difficult situation even more stressful, determine to take a few hours this weekend to just clean something out. (I promise, you’ll be so glad you did!)


4. Watch Facebook less if you need to. Goodness, I love Facebook for keeping up with friends as much as anyone does, but last weekend I realized that watching what my friends were doing in Alabama that our family was missing out on was not helping. More importantly, I realized it was making a challenging situation even more difficult for my kids if they happened to scroll through and see what their friends were up to while we weren’t there.


Instead of living the life we’ve been given here in Ohio, Facebook (or Instagram, or Twitter, or whatever it is for you), made us wish for something that couldn’t happen right now. If you’re going through something difficult (especially with a friend), limiting your time on social media and just really living might just change your perspective.

My son took these pictures in our backyard the other night ~ amazing!

5. Find the beauty right where you are. Never (ever) in a million years would we have snapped that picture in the backyard of our home in Alabama, and it truly is beautiful here. We used to walk to Publix (which I miss ~ so much!), but now we can walk to the river. We used to have a back yard full of landscaping, now we have a yard abuzz with thousands of fireflies each night and watch deer from our kitchen window at just about every meal. I’m still praying for grass one of these days (ugh!), but there’s beauty here already, if I just take a moment to open my eyes to see it.


If you’re going through something that just hurts so badly, try to find something oh-so-beautiful even in your situation. It might be a special snuggle with a child who’s struggling through a difficult season of their life, or maybe a walk outside to see some flowers in bloom. No matter what your situation, there is something beautiful to be found right where you’re at, so take a second to find it and just drink it in.


6. Realize you can’t do it all. I’ve been attending a Bible Study at the church we’ve been visiting here, and the message from Priscilla Schirer last week was on prioritizing. (Yikes!) She shared that a Godly friend encouraged her that she couldn’t do everything during the season of her life when her kids were young, so she needed to focus only on her top priorities.


This summer, the only things I can really tackle are making our move as painless for my family as possible, and keeping up (somewhat!) here on PPP. I’ve been convicted that I so often put my business ahead of my family, and right now they need to be first. School will be here before you know it, and I’ll never get back today with my family. I hate that in many ways (because I really do enjoy what I do here so much!), but until at least mid-August, they need a wee bit more attention right now.


What that means also is that there are lots of things I’m saying no to. This isn’t a season when I’m going to run 20 miles every week, I’m not going to bake homemade bread for dinner all that often, most of my penny pinching will be done just by shopping Aldi, and my house isn’t going to be perfectly clean even once. If you’re in a stressful season, really consider what your big priorities are, and then give yourself grace for the stuff you just can’t manage.

From my old office  ~ we waited years for that room and I can’t wait to figure out what we’ll do here!

7. Dream. Big. Taking the time to dream has undoubtedly been the thing that has helped me to just feel some peace this last week (and even a little excitement as we’re here.)  We’ve always put some effort into dreaming big in our homes, and I think in the midst of the move I’d forgotten how precious it is just to imagine something new for our future, even if we can’t have it all today.


Last week my (wise) husband encouraged me to really start thinking about my new office specifically and in general about our home, and to start dreaming about what I really wanted it to be. I hemmed and hawed, and generally felt like I’d come up with the simplest way to tackle what we have, just settling for something that would work.


He encouraged me instead to really dream about how I could make this space absolutely perfect – no holding back. Now, we may never get that big ole’ dream I’ve started thinking up, but since my dreams are free, I might just as well imagine ~ and maybe one day those dreams will become a possibility.  We’ve walked around our yard and started planning what we’d like to see in each spot one day. In our last home we did the same thing, even staking out trees that didn’t get planted for years, just to start dreaming. Eventually, much of what we dreamed really did happened, but we would never have gotten there if we didn’t dream big to start with! 


If you’re struggling through something that just feels overwhelming, try to look past the mountain in your life right now, and dream of where you may be in a year, two years, or even five years down the road. Dream of what you really want, not just what you’ll settle for. Work towards your dream even in the midst of your struggles, and know that those dreams might just become real for you one day too.

There are seasons of life that just come with so many overwhelming things it’s hard to even see outside right where you are. This week as I’ve struggled to find peace here it hasn’t all been easy, but that doesn’t mean it isn’t good. (And it sure doesn’t mean God doesn’t have a plan right here!) If you’re struggling too, be encouraged that you are not alone, and that God has a perfect plan only for you. 


And on a very short side note, I cannot thank you all enough for your kind words, emails, and texts encouraging me through our move after last week’s post (or on this one.) I feel so very blessed to have such kind people cheering for me along the way, and am so very thankful for each of you! If you have any other tips on how to get through something difficult, I’d love for you to share those too. (I really do love hearing from you!) 


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Are You Following PPP on Pinterest?

Did you know that Passionate Penny Pincher is on Pinterest? To be honest, as we were preparing to move these last few months my love affair with Pinterest dwindled (a lot), but now that we’re setting up our new home I’m hanging out there a bit more these days. ;)


(Check out the plans I started working on for our powder room this morning. I’ve never had a powder room before, so my husband ~ aka the carpenter ~ has his work cut out for him!)

I’d love for you to join PPP there, and you can always join PPP on Facebook and via email too. (Remember that signing up on Facebook gets you this free printable grocery stock up price list, and by signing up for free daily emails you’ll get a free list of what you can freeze too.


And of course, check out the PPP Pinterest page where I pin frugal recipe ideas, decorating tips, cleaning suggestions and more!

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How To Save On Auto Insurance

This week while driving down the road my 14-year-old-almost-soon-to-be-driving-yikes-son asked out of the blue if you would have to call the insurance company or police if you were in an accident that involved only your own car and no one else.


Y’all, why does he ask stuff like that? Is it to make this already-going-to-be-crazy-when-he-drives-momma worry a year sooner about his driving future?


I have no idea where that question came from, but it started a big conversation as we drove along. We’ve always done all we can to keep our car insurance premium low (meaning our deductible is usually high), and in general avoid claiming minor incidents to our home or automobile to reduce the chance of our insurance premiums going up.


We explained that by not having accidents and keeping a good driving record without any tickets, your car insurance costs can be reduced. We then let him know that we fully expect him to keep that same plan in mind for himself. (Just figure the kid will also be fully bubble-wrapped before he’s given keys to the car.) ;)


Have you looked at ways to save on your car insurance? If you’ve got a teenager who’ll be driving soon (ugh?) ~ or if you’re just hoping to eek out an extra penny by getting the best price on car insurance for yourself, here are a few tips to help keep you saving:


  1. Consider a plan with a high deductible. If you’ve got an Emergency Fund in place, you should be able to handle the cost of a higher deductible if you ever are in an accident, and your premium will be reduced. (Do you have an Emergency Fund and written budget? If not, get started.)
  2. Pay your car insurance bill twice a year rather than in monthly payments. This won’t save you a ton of money, but most insurance companies charge a small fee for making monthly payments. If you’re able, pay your insurance bill in lump sums twice a year to save more.
  3. Before purchasing a new car, contact your insurance agency to find out if your insurance will be higher on one kind of car than another. Certain car models have lower insurance rates, so you’ll want to consider purchasing a car that offers the best insurance prices.
  4. Bundle your insurance savings. By using the same provider for all your insurance needs, you’ll save more on your home and car insurance.
  5. Ask your current insurance provider if you’re getting the best price. A phone call to your insurance provider is free, and it may be that there are savings that you can get just for asking. Take a minute to check in and make sure you’re getting all the discounts you can (a five minute phone call may save you a few dollars!)
  6. Make sure you’re getting the best coverage available at the right price. There are so many different companies that offer car insurance, however you can contact an Endorsed Local Provider through Dave Ramsey’s ELP program, to find an insurance professional in your area who will make sure you’re getting the right coverage for your family at the best price.  They’ll look at your insurance needs (for both home and auto insurance), and make sure you’re getting the very best insurance coverage by searching policy prices and coverage options from several different companies for you.
Checking in once a year with your insurance company to make sure you’re getting a good rate is a great way to make sure you’re getting the most savings you can while maintaining good coverage. And Dave Ramsey’s Endorsed Local Provider (ELP) program is a great place to start looking for an insurance provider in your area.


Dave Ramsey’s ELPs understand insurance, and most importantly they have the same financial goals that you have. They can help you find the best price on insurance for both your car and home, and there are even providers you can use for investing options, tax help, realty and more.Find out how to get in touch with an insurance provider who’s partnered with the Endorsed Local Provider program in your area. Go HERE to learn more!


This is a sponsored by Dave Ramsey’s Endorsed Local Providers, however all opinions are (of course!) my own.

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$379 Ikea Bedroom Makeover

Remember my recent trip to Ikea with my fun 11-year-old?


(If you’re debating a trip to Ikea, you should definitely read this post for a peek at what you’ll find.) 


Well, we finally finished getting her bedroom put together, and wanted to show a few pictures. (I’m so pleased with how everything turned out!)


Now, I’m normally not an Ikea-furniture-kind-of-girl. I love beautiful (heavy, hardwood ~ traditional) furniture, but Caroline really wanted a loft bed. She had a pretty white Ethan Allen bed that we’d gotten from my sister-in-law a few years ago, but since Reagan finally left her tiny room for a real room in our new house, she managed to snag the bed. (Caroline was thrilled – she’d been hoping for a new “fancy” bed!)


After looking around online and at a few local stores I didn’t see what we were looking for, so when she fell in love with this set (and I fell in love with the price), I knew it was meant to be. Here’s the cost breakdown:


  • Loft Bed $129
  • Metal Desk Top $99
  • Junior Chair $34
  • Blue Night Stand $49.99 (my favorite)
  • Magnets for Metal Boards $5.98
  • White Lantern Lights (we have to work on these still) $7.99
  • Artificial Plants $3.99
  • Bedding from Kohl’s $50
  • TOTAL = $379.95
We’re going to still use the dresser she had for now – it was one that I had growing up that’s been re-painted in white with silver drawer pulls (I can’t believe I didn’t take a picture while I was in there!) Here’s a peek of how her room looks now . . .

(The cords on those little lantern lights are about to drive me crazy ~ we’ve got to get them hung up somehow!)

I love (love, love, love!) this night stand – it’s got a whole in the back for an outlet so she can charge her Kindle at night, and it’s just so cute!

Have you gotten any fun furniture recently at Ikea, or come up with other great ways to save? Bedroom furniture can get expensive, so I’d love to hear your tips.


I’d love for you to join me over on Pinterest (I love that place!)  If you have a blog and have done a little fluffing in your home, I’d love to see it, so leave your link in the comments section. Also, if there’s a craft you’ve seen on a website that you’re hoping to make, feel free to share that link as well (I’m always looking for new ideas!)


See previous Friday Fluff Up projects and ideas . . . and Happy Fluffing!


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When Life Just Isn’t Easy

Time for a (very!) random rambling – if you’re here just for the deals I COMPLETELY understand ~ scoot on to the next penny pinched post! ;) 



Have I mentioned lately (ahem ~ today?) that we recently moved







There’s really no way to sugar-coat it ~ this move has been H.A.R.D. on our family.


Truth be told? It’s been hard on me. 


I’m not good at leaving behind wonderful friends. I miss my home. I miss my office. I miss my neighborhood. I miss my church.


I (really) miss my life.




Honestly? I didn’t expect this moving thing to be so hard on me. I knew that logistically it would be tough ~ coordinating movers, packers, un-packers, enrolling kids in school, finding new places for the kids to do their extracurricular activities, setting up a new home ~ I pretty well guessed that all that would not be easy. What I didn’t expect though is that I’d come here and feel so . . . just . . . lost. And overwhelmed. And anxious. And ~ terrified?


My kids aren’t in school yet, so they haven’t figured out their place either. They don’t know yet where they fit. Or if they fit. Or if they ever will fit.


They don’t know where their place is, and I don’t know either.  I don’t know what to tell them.


I’m still clinging tight to the hope that God has a great big ole’ plan here. And my husband’s job is fantastic. (Seriously folks, how many people would give anything just for that, and really when we have so very much what business do I have complaining?)


Much (much) of the things that have been difficult in our move have been made worse by some quirky things. We had lots of furniture damaged in our move (meaning our home feels even less like a home), we have no grass or landscaping outside which has been really hard on my we’d-rather-play-outside kids (hopes are for landscaping at least this week ~ praying!), and in general moving to a brand new home has definitely come with a few glitches.


I’m trying to remind myself that sometimes things are just hard. Moves aren’t always easy, illnesses don’t always heal, and some days things just don’t easily work out the way that we think they should.


But that doesn’t mean there isn’t value in the hard thingsWhether you’re going through something physically, mentally, financially or any other way, remember the truth that you (and I) are learning something right here and right now that cannot be learned any other way.


I was reminded though yesterday that I am so ridiculously fortunate that I have absolutely no business whining (at all.) Not too far from our home I saw a family who had nothing. Not too far from my circle of friends I know people who’s children are struggling with major illnesses. What business do I have complaining?


So, I’m praying peace today to you wherever you’re at, and for me right here. And if you’ve moved recently (or just gone through something difficult), know that someone else has probably been there too. (I keep seeing people who seem to be moving so easily, and wondering what on earth is wrong with me ~ so this is my reminder to all of us that things aren’t always as easy as they look!) Hang in there, know that there’s a plan (really!), give yourself grace, and be blessed.



Note ~ I drafted this post earlier in the week, but already our days are feeling a little less painful ~ it’s amazing what a few days can do to just change your perspective! I decided to share it though because if you’re going through something difficult I really do want you to know others have been there too.  Watch next week for a few things that we’ve done already to make life just a little more liveable. ;)


Here are a few more posts you may want to check out if you just need some encouragement today:

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