DIY Graduation Gift with Money – Pizza Box Idea!

If you missed my Facebook live video this morning you can watch here for a fun DIY Graduation gift with money!

Good gravy.

 

I impressed myself on this one. 🙂 

And if I can tackle this little cute project?

 

I know you can too.

My friend shared this UBER CUTE idea for a DIY Graduation gift with money that she found over on Pinterest, but I thought it would be super fun as a teacher gift too. 

(Note – if you do give it to a teacher you’ll want to make sure their school allows you to give teachers cash ~ many only allow gift cards, so find out ahead of time before preparing.)

 

It took less than 30 minutes to make, is a great fun way to give cash (which is what most folks love anyways!), and you’ll feel like you totally rocked one gift this year. 🙂 

Success! 

Here’s all you need:

 

Looking for more great graduation gift ideas? Head on over HERE ~ the Contigo water bottle is my favorite and would be perfect to fill with a little cash too!

Print Friendly and PDF

DIY Spring Wreath

 

I am soooo in love with this project and couldn’t even wait to share it with you! 

I’ve fallen in love with several tulip wreaths I’ve seen on Pinterest, but wasn’t sure how hard it would be to make one.

 

Turns out, it’s not all that hard, just time consuming.

 

All you need are lots of tulips.

 

Seriously

 

A. lot. 

Here are the supplies you’ll need:

  • round styrofoam wreath
  • 10 yards satin ribbon
  • tulips – I used the only ones I could find at Hobby Lobby and bought 15 ~ I needed almost every single one!

Just wrap, and wrap and wrap the ribbon around your wreath form and tuck tulips in before hot gluing.

Like in the video, here.

 

 

You really can do this in about an hour, and the results are pretty impressive.

 

I really do just love this one!

 

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!

 

Looking for more DIY? Here you go…

Print Friendly and PDF

Be Our Guest DIY

I am sooooo pleased with how this little project turned out!

 

 

As I shared in the video below, my neighbor’s dad cut out the signs for us to use, so all I had to do was paint the board with acrylic paint and then use my Silhouette Cameo to make the lettering. 

I love it. 😉 

 

It’s hanging in our guest bedroom just waiting for a few guests to come visit, and I couldn’t believe how easy this project was to do.

 

(You can see the rest of our guest bedroom over HERE ~ I love this space!)

 

Success!

 

(Watch me make it here in the video ~ and if you’re interested in the Menu Plans I use that I mention, go HERE to check those out too!)

 

 

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!

41ead435-7bbb-48b9-b68a-326599b6fa26

More rooms we’ve updated in our home . . .

Print Friendly and PDF

$29 Sideboard Makeover

Note from Laurie: My friend Cheryl is in the process of making over her living room, and goodness, I LOVE what she’s done! She was sweet enough to share with us here on PPP ~ take a peek . . . 

Wow . . . 

 

Just . . . wow!

 

I’m in the middle of a living room makeover (we finally updated our couches after 10 years) and after a tense afternoon of tax preparation . . . this was clearly NOT the time to buy more furniture. 🙂 

 

Our search for sideboards has been going on for M O N T H S ~ all around the $500 range.  This had me thinking . . . why not just paint the one we have now?

 

 

$29 can of chalk paint & wipe-on poly (optional – this was in the garage from previous projects)

 

If you haven’t use chalk paint before, it is amazing. 

 

No prep.

 

No sanding.

 

Just, paint!

 

 

I went to Lowes and bought a $29.00 can of chalk paint, painted this beautiful sideboard to match my new furniture and in just a few hours it was done.

 

Before . . .

 

 

 

After . . .

 

 

I’m thrilled with how it turned out!!  I can’t wait to show you the rest … ALL on a penny pinched budget (I’m learning a few things here at PPP! 🙂

chalkpaint2

 

Love chalk paint? Here are a few more ideas you may want to check out . . .

paintedpiano

 

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 . . . Happy Fluffing!

Print Friendly and PDF

Valentine’s Dollar Tree DIY


My friend Cheryl made this super cute craft using supplies from the Dollar Tree, and I just love the way it turned out! Take a peek . . . 

I saw this idea over on Pinterest, and just fell in love!

 

Here’s what you’ll need to get started:

  • Styrofoam Trees
  • Conversation Hearts
  • Glue

That’s it.

 

For real.

 

 

 

This is such a fun way to fluff up your home for Valentine’s Day.  My 10 year old just loved sorting and creating these trees with me!

 

 

 

These candle holders were collecting dust in a cabinet so I used them to set the trees up high and think they worked out  perfectly!

 

 

 

 

Happy Fluffing!

 

 

 

 

 

Have you made any fun decor for Valentine’s Day? I’d love to hear what you’re up to ~ leave a comment to share! And if you’re looking for more penny pinched projects, here you go . .  .

Print Friendly and PDF

(FREE!) DIY Valentine Tree

 

Looking for a fun, frugal, and free DIY? Here you go! 

 

Gather up some branches from your back yard, construction paper, scissors and tape.

 

Put the branches in your vase (I put corn in the bottom of my container so the sticks stayed in place.)
Cut out a few hearts and tape them on your branches.

 

Done.

 

So simple, so fun, and you won’t feel one bit of guilt when you throw this craft away on February 15th.

Success! 🙂 

 

Have you made any fun decor for Valentine’s Day? I’d love to hear what you’re up to ~ leave a comment to share! And if you’re looking for more penny pinched projects, here you go . .  .

Print Friendly and PDF

DIY Baby Banner

I’m so stinkin’ excited about this little project!

 

 

As I shared over HERE, we’re hosting a baby shower for a couple in my husband’s office tomorrow, so I got to crafting this morning.

 

Here’s what I used . . . 

 

  • Brown yarn
  • Clothespins
  • Silhouette Cameo 
  • Fabric strips (bought coordinating fabric square at Hobby Lobby, then cut into 1″ strips ~ cost was $6 after Hobby Lobby 40% off coupon)
  • Cricut Iron On Material $9.74
  • Pre-cut banners from Michaels, $4
  • Total = $19.74

 

I made the banner using the directions in this tutorial . . .

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Then used my Silhouette Cameo to cut out the letters for the top banner . . .

 

 

 

 

Success!

 

Now ~ as I shared in the video we still don’t have any idea what we’re actually making for dinner at this baby shower, so if you have any suggestions I’m all ears. 😉 And, if you have any other suggestions for craft projects I’d sure love to hear those too ~ Happy Friday!

 

bestbabyshowergift

Looking for more frugal baby shower ideas?

Need some frugal gifts for mom?

Print Friendly and PDF

The Only Way to Organize American Girl Clothes

theonlywaytoorgainzeagclothespinterest5

 

So . . . this idea is just genius. 😉

theonlywaytoorganizeagclothes1

My friend Jamie gave me this suggestion for organizing American Girl Doll clothes ~ and goodness, it makes life so much easier!

 

Last weekend my girls set to work, and in about 12 minutes that mess was fixed. 

 

theonlywaytoorganizeagclothes6

Success!

 

theonlywaytoorganizeagclothes5

These over the door organizers are also awesome for cleaning supplies, snacks, gloves, mittens, hats, Legos, toys, you name it. 

diy cleaning supplies organizer

So.

smart.

 

If you’re looking for an organizer, Amazon has these for just $8.99 right now, and I love how easy they make it to store just about anything.

 

And, if you have other suggestions on how to organize American Girl clothes (or other toys too), I’d love to hear them ~ leave a comment to share!

theonlywaytoorgainzeagclothesfb1

 

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!

 

secrets to thenew American Girl Rewards Program!

Print Friendly and PDF

The Best Baking Supply Bargains

 

bestbakingbargains

Now that we’ve almost finished our 12 days of Christmas baking series (download your free grocery list and cookbook over HERE) I thought it would be fun to share a few of my favorite ways to package all those goodies up!

 

bakingbargains2

 

I found most of my supplies at Hobby Lobby  . . .

bakingbargains3

wrapped them up with inexpensive ribbon,

bakingbargains4

and found a few bargains at Michael’s & The Dollar Tree too.

bakingbargains7

I love those stores. 

 

 

bakingbargains10

Here’s how the math on each container added up: 

Big red and white carry out box 66¢ per box

Santa tin $1.75 at Hobby Lobby

bakingbargains8

Tiny box containers at Hobby Lobby 20¢ per box

Sliding Boxes from Hobby Lobby 50¢ per box

Polka Dot Sliding Box Containers from Hobby Lobby 75¢ each

bakingbargains11

Plastic bags 12/$1 at the Dollar Tree 8.3¢ each

Merry Christmas tag from Hobby Lobby 5¢ each

bakingbargains12

Merry Christmas Box $1 at Hobby Lobby

bakingbargains13

Christmas Tin $1 at the Dollar Tree

Green Christmas Santa Box $1 at Michael’s

Merry Bag and Santa Hat tag 15¢ at Hobby Lobby

bakingbargains17

Polka Dot and Striped Bags 12¢ per box

Chalkboard Clothespins 13¢ per box

Gift Card Holder 50¢ each

bakingbargains156

 

Be Merry Box 75¢ per box at Hobby Lobby

 

Hope this helps you pinch a few extra pennies this Christmas, as well as spoil someone special you’re thankful for this year. Enjoy!

the ChristmasEdition

Looking for more bargain DIYs?

 

dollartreegiftstogive20163

 

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!

 

Interact with 570K+ Penny Pinchers on Facebook and Twitter or Subscribe to Passionate Penny Pincher by email to keep up with all the penny pinchin’ deals!
Print Friendly and PDF

Dollar Tree Christmas Centerpiece

 

dollartreecenterpiecepinterest1

Need an inexpensive Christmas centerpiece for an event this Christmas season? 

This is for you. 

 

 
dollartreecenterpiece1

 
Here’s what you’ll need:

  • a grapevine or greenery wreath $1 at the Dollar Tree
  • red candle votive $1 at the Dollar Tree
  • 2-3 berry twigs $1 at the Dollar Tree

dollartreecenterpiece2

Just take the berries and place all around the wreath, light the candle, and you’re done.

dollartreecenterpiece3

I used a blanket scarf as my table runner (this weekend only they’re $12.95, shipped at Cents of Style when you use the code BLANKET16 at checkout.)

dollartreecenterpiece5

Done!

 

dollartreecenterpiecepinterest

 

 

 

 

the ChristmasEdition

Looking for more Dollar Tree DIY?

 

dollartreegiftstogive20163

 

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!

 

Interact with 570K+ Penny Pinchers on Facebook and Twitter or Subscribe to Passionate Penny Pincher by email to keep up with all the penny pinchin’ deals!
Print Friendly and PDF

Dollar Tree DIY

dollartrydiy3

Need an easy Thanksgiving Centerpiece? Here’s all you need:

  • Glass Jar from Dollar Tree $1
  • Twine from Dollar Tree $1
  • Glue gun and lots of glue gun sticks


Before . . .

dollartreediy2

After . . .

 

dollartreediy1

 

Done!

the ChristmasEdition

Looking for more Dollar Tree DIY?

 

dollartreeetchedglass9

 

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!

Print Friendly and PDF

Dollar Tree Gifts to Give

dollartreegiftstogive20163

Grab my list of 101 Stocking Stuffers under $1 or less over HERE! 

Dollar Tree Gifts to Give

dollartreegiftstogive5
Y’all know I love gifting from the Dollar Tree . . .

dollartreegiftstogive1

So here are a few ideas.

dollartreegiftstogive2

Grab a bucket from the Dollar Tree or One Spot at Target, and add the words “JOY” (I made mine with my Silhouette Cameo Cutter and contact paper.)

dollartreegiftstogive3

Make this cute snowman using candles and ribbon from the Dollar Tree (the bell ornaments are from the Dollar Tree too.)

dollartreegiftstogive

So simple, and perfect to give as a teacher gift this year with a gift card attached, or even for kids to make as a class project!

dollartreegiftstogive4

You can also set your table using this cute scarf (seriously folks, I’m addicted . . . )

dollartreegiftstogive6

 

And you’re all set. Success! 🙂 

dollartreegiftstogive20164

 

the ChristmasEdition

Looking for more Christmas fun at the Dollar Tree?

 

dollartreeetchedglass9

 

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

 

Interact with 353K+ Penny Pinchers on Facebook and Twitter or Subscribe to Passionate Penny Pincher by email to keep up with all the penny pinchin’ deals!
Print Friendly and PDF

Best Cookie Jar Ever

diycookiejarblack

 

 

Oh my.

 

I’m so excited about this.

 

Like. I. *love*. this.

 

And I soooo hope you do too!

screen-shot-2016-11-04-at-6-02-06-am

This last week my mom was in town visiting and we stopped by Hobby Lobby. They had their glassware marked down to 50% off (remember, almost everything is marked 50% off at Hobby Lobby every other week, and if it’s not marked 50% off, you can always use a 40% off coupon. You’re welcome.)

 

So, because I absolutely love playing with etching cream (remember I’ve used it before HERE and HERE), I decided to grab a jar to work on, and made a few fun gifts! I was struggling with what to put on those jars, then it dawned on me that it would be so fun for my own kids to have my cookie recipe written down for them. 🙂

recipecards2

You can print your free recipe cards for my chocolate chip cookies over HERE if you’d like ~ they really are the best. 🙂 

 

Here’s what I used (as well as my mistakes – I may actually re-do this tutorial next week because a few readers helped me learn along the way!)

dollartreeetchedglass

First, you need etching cream and a few glass jars (these are huge – the smaller one was $12.50, I think the larger one was $20 but it was a gift for my mom who wanted a bigger jar.)

 

dollartreeetchedglass6

I used my Silhouette Cameo (I love this thing!) to cut out the words on vinyl adhesive . . .

dollartreeetchedglass8

(Here’s a peek at me practicing some of the letters on the Cameo . . . if you don’t have a Cameo though, you could easily make this using a stencil pattern or stickers in a pattern you love!)

dollartreeetchedglass1

Then I removed the backing from the vinyl and attached it to the glass, and painted with etching cream.

dollartreeetchedglass2

(Note – I learned from folks over on Facebook live that your’e supposed to actually wipe off excess etching cream before peeling the vinyl off ~ I had no idea and am going to have to try another jar that way!)

dollartreeetchedglass3

Then my mom started fluffing those jar gifts using a few fun items from the Dollar Tree 🙂

dollartreeetchedglass4

 

These super cute bells and berries were from the Dollar Tree (the spatula was $2 at Hobby Lobby . . . )

dollartreeetchedglass11

And for the record ~ this would be SO much better to give as a gift with those homemade cookies in the jar, however it was the week of Halloween and I could not possibly bake one more sweet in my house to fill this jar. You get the idea. 😉

 

I found the ornaments on clearance last year at Target 90% off, the snowflake ornaments were $1 at the Dollar Tree for a pack of two, and the Merry and Bright sign was from Hobby Lobby for $3 (this small jar was from Walmart for $4)

dollartreeetchedglass12

 

dollartreeetchedglass14

And we attached a Dollar Tree star (I love those big stars!) to the the large jar with “grace” which headed home to my mom’s house.

dollartreeetchedglass9

Overall, I’m so pleased with these little projects and am going to make a few of the cookie jars as gifts this Christmas (I’m so excited!)

(And, if you’d like a video tutorial how to use etching cream, here you go. It didn’t work perfectly on the Dollar Tree plastic containers, but hopefully it will give you an idea of how etching cream works!

Are you working on any homemade gifts this Christmas? I’d love to hear what you’re making ~ leave a comment to share! 

 

 

the ChristmasEdition

Looking for more Christmas fun at the Dollar Tree? 

 

 

Stockholm

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

 

Interact with 353K+ Penny Pinchers on Facebook and Twitter or Subscribe to Passionate Penny Pincher by email to keep up with all the penny pinchin’ deals!
Print Friendly and PDF

DIY Chalkboard

 screen-shot-2016-10-21-at-12-56-51-pm

DIY Chalkboard

Looking for an easy way to fluff up just about any space?  Look at this simple way to create a chalkboard from items you have laying around the house!

 

chalkboard5

 

Here’s what you will need to get started:

  • Picture frame
  • White spray paint
  • Black chalk spray paint
  • Newspaper
  • Chalk marker

Directions

Lay out a few sheets of old newspaper outside or in a well ventilated area.

chalkboard4
Disassemble your picture frame by taking off the back of the frame and carefully taking out the glass.

 

chalkboard3
Lay out your empty frame onto your newspaper and spray with your white spray paint.

 

chalkboard2
Now carefully lay your glass out onto another sheet of newspaper and spray with two coats of black chalk spray paint.

 

chalkboard1
Once your frame and glass are dry, carefully place your chalk glass back into the frame.

 

chalkboard6
Draw your design on your frame with your chalk markers and hang or place against a wall to display. Love this!

 

screen-shot-2016-10-21-at-12-57-05-pm

 

Looking for more ways to decorate for fall on a penny pinched budget?

Here you go:

 

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!

Print Friendly and PDF

Dollar Tree Pumpkin Craft

img_7166

Looking for an easy Dollar tree craft this October? Here you go!

 

 

img_6959

Supplies:

  • Small faux pumpkins (watch for these at the Dollar Tree)
  • White craft paint (check the Dollar bins as well at Target or Michael’s)
  • Krylon looking glass spray paint
  • (2) Foam paint brush
  • Mod podge or liquid glue
  • Black glitter

img_6958

img_6957

1. Lay a couple sheets of old newspaper down on your craft surface

img_7165

2. Use your foam paint brush to paint your pumpkins white and let dry

 

img_6955
3. Next take your pumpkins outside, lay another piece of newspaper down, and spray your pumpkins with your spray paint and let dry

 

img_7167
4. Now paint the bottom half of your pumpkins with your mod podge and immediately cover with glitter (best to do the glitter over the garbage or outside)

img_7166
5. Let your pumpkins dry, shake off any excess glitter, and display

 

Looking for more ways to decorate for fall on a penny pinched budget? Here you go:

nosewpennantbanner

DIY Butcher Block Sign

fallbudgetpurple

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!

 

Print Friendly and PDF

Silhouette Cameo: Iron On Glitter Projects

fridayfluffupribbons5

Want more? Watch this video to see us at work. 

Soooo, I haven’t had much time for fluffin’ in our home lately, but we’ve had our Silhouette Cameo pulled out for the last few weeks and are determined to make some cute shirts before we go to Disney later this fall! (Our 16 year old’s high school band is playing at Disney, so we’re planning to tag along!)
fridayfluffupribbons10

A friend mentioned that she uses Iron On Glitter paper to make super cute shirts and I was determined to try it out. (The glitter paper is much cheaper at Amazon than we found at Hobby Lobby and  Michael’s, so it’s worth ordering if you’re doing something similar anytime soon!)

fridayfluffupribbons1

Here’s what we made using a few fun t-shirts, bows and more at Hobby Lobby, Walmart and Amazon . . .

 

fridayfluffupribbons2

We found the onesie and chevron print diaper cover at Hobby Lobby as well as this bow . . .

fridayfluffupribbons3

fridayfluffupribbons9

The headbands were from Walmart (I think they were 4/$3?)

fridayfluffupribbons6

The girls wanted matching Disney tees to wear so we picked up the tees at  Hobby Lobby for $3.99 (these took a bit of work, but finally turned out perfectly!)

fridayfluffupribbons4

 

And we used this huge pack of cheer bows to make a few cute bows (we had to even make one for our OSU-Buckeye-neighbors ~ I need more red bows because those are my favorites I think!)

fridayfluffupribbons11

 

So, there you have it ~ no major space updates in our home the last few weeks, but we’ve gotten a good start on one of our favorite projects. If you’ve been debating a Silhouette Cameo I really do love mine (but wait for a sale – I paid $199 for mine and have seen it drop once to $179, so crossing my fingers we see that one again soon!)

 

 

fridayfluffupribbons8

Note – I learned how to make these iron ons by following the directions over HERE ~ if you have other tips I’d love to hear those too!

DIY Butcher Block Sign

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

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!)

Print Friendly and PDF

Goodwill Chair Makeover #2

I tackled just a little painting today. 😉

 

Before . . .

goodwillb

After . . .

chalkpaint1

As promised in the video, here’s what I used:

chalkpaint2

Now this chair has a partner to match 🙂

chalkpaint3

Looking for more ways to work with chalk paint? Here you go:

paintedpiano

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!

 

Print Friendly and PDF

Hobby Lobby Happiness

hobbylobbyhappinessblue

 

Remember two years ago when we just moved in and my daughter was determined to have an IKEA platform bed?

Yup. me too.

 

Making that bed though was quite near the death of me, so I finally gave in and decided it was well worth the money to start fresh.

 

(Y’all, getting that bed made up with clean sheets was an Olympic sized feat ~ so much so that I had to muster up everything in me to keep any potty-words from coming out.)

 

(Seriously.)

 

(It was ridiculous.) 

bedroomredo3

So a few months ago we bought Caroline a set of full mattresses (hoping she would occasionally let her sister snuggle up at night), and found a headboard similar to this one online. (I can’t remember exactly where we purchased it, but I wished I’d realized it was really meant for a queen size bed not full/queen. The board is a little wider than the bed, but it’ll do!) 

bedroomredo4

Her dresser was the one I had growing up that we re-painted several years ago, and for now we brought up these garage sale nightstands from the guest bedroom. (Honestly, we don’t have guests all that often so it makes more sense for her to use them!)

bedroomredo10

Then I remembered this frame I’d found on clearance for $3 years ago (we’d actually moved it with us), and realized for just a few dollars we could update it to match perfectly.

bedroomredo11

We found fabric at Hobby Lobby along with a large piece of cork board . . .

bedroomredo13

cut the cork board to fit the frame (clearly Caroline and I aren’t expert cutters, but my sweet hubby came home and tidied things up a bit to make it work)

bedroomredo14

I stapled the fabric onto the board . . .

bedroomredo12

Caroline spray painted the old frame . . .

bedroomredo8

And for about $8 the bulletin board was done!

bedroomredo1

I found the flowers, lamp, and dishes at Hobby Lobby as well (all on sale for 50% off this week . . . )

bedroomredo9

As well as the signs to hang above her bed. (We’re actually waiting on one more anchor to go on the left side ~ our store was out but we had one shipped and it’s on its way!)

bedroomredo7

(She was in love with the anchor idea – I’m not totally sold on that anchor pillow but for now it works!)

I’d still like to find some inexpensive curtains and shades for those lamps (those lamps have been re-painted about 16 times, but I think with a new shade they’ll do?)

bedroomredo5

 

(Not that it matters too much – but Caroline isn’t allowed with a computer by herself in her room – however I was in there with her taking these pictures while she was watching the Olympics, and she used the computer to hide!) 🙂 

 

And we may repaint those nightstands one day in a brighter color but for now they’re just fine.

bedroomredo2

We haven’t spent a bundle on the room, but it is so much better and should fit her through college. (I love that!)

If you have a room that’s needed some fluffing, a trip to Hobby Lobby might just get you all set up too. 🙂

mudroom2

More rooms we’ve updated in our home . . .

Save

Save

Save

Save

Save

Save

Print Friendly and PDF

DIY Tiered Tray

 

diytray1

Check out how one of my readers created her own version of the tiered tray from our recent post, 25 Days of Thrift Store Makeovers Day 19: Picture Frames ~ I love this!  I asked her to tell me just how she made it so I could share – and here’s what she did. Love it!

 

After seeing this idea, I wanted to try and make one myself. I found 2 sturdy frames at a thrift store for $7 and a large wooden candlestick at another thrift store for just $1.

 

I was able to knock the wall mount off the candlestick and just sand down the spots where it attached.  After wiping the dust from all three pieces, I used a leftover jar of sample paint to freshen them up.  (Can’t beat free!) 🙂

diytray2

 

The next step was adding the bottoms to the frames.  

This project used pieces of pallet wood, but that was going to be too thick for my frames.  I ended up using strips of lattice wood I had leftover from another project which just happened to already have that “weathered” look since they had been outside in the weather for almost a year 🙂

The thickness of the lattice wood was the perfect match for the frames.  It was also easy to cut down to size with a small saw.  After cutting them down, I glued the strips  into place with a little E6000 Adhesive.

 

diytray3

 

The next step was adding the candlestick to each tray.  You’ll need a drill and a few long screws for this part.

The large end of the candlestick already had a hole in it (where the candle would normally sit), so I drilled a pilot hole into the center of the bottom tray and used a long screw to attach the large part of the candlestick to it.

For the smaller top piece, I drilled a hole into the top tray and used a screw from the top tray down into the top of the candlestick underneath. Before attaching the top tray to the bottom candlestick, drill a pilot hole for another screw to go up into the top candle stick.  The holes will need to be close together so the screws will be hidden by the candlestick pieces.  (You could also use glue for the this part!)

 

diytray4

 

That’s it!  Pretty simple. 🙂 I think it turned out great and only cost about $8 ~ yay!
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!

 

Print Friendly and PDF

Our Bedroom Makeover: And Why Our House May Always Be a Little Hodge-Podgey.

bedroommakover2

Note – I just finished reading the book Hope Heals and HIGHLY recommend it if you need some encouragement to soak up life, no matter where you are. Go HERE to grab yours. 

I’m just going to be really, really, really honest with you all right now.

 

I’m not gonna win the best penny pincher ever this week.  

 

Not even close.

bedroommakover1

Five years ago (fifteen years in. . . ) we splurged on bedroom furniture which I loved. We saved to pay cash for it, got a good deal, and after purchasing bedding I walked away and called the room done.

 

but.

bedroommakover4

It never looked just right, you know?

 

So last weekend after touring a few model homes I came back to our beautiful-but-quite-hod-podged home and just started dreaming. 

 

We’ve spent years working on upgrading the brick and mortar parts of our homes as we’ve moved over the last twenty years, but have never spent much on our decor because we really wouldn’t gain financial value from that. (Adding trim work to a home makes for a better sale, a cute dresser just doesn’t!) So, every room in our home carries a few Goodwill, thrift stores, and hand me down treasures.

 

Which is perfect. And I’m so so thankful for them.

Screen Shot 2016-07-29 at 11.24.39 AM

But.

 

I kinda wanted a “right” room, you know?

bedroommakover15

You see, my struggle with penny pinching is this:

 

I love beautiful things. But. (sigh.)  I hate what they cost.

 

Like, HATE what they cost.

 

But I decided to head to Home Goods, noticed a few lamps, and thought about how much I’d love to replace my Goodwill/garage store mix and match lamps (see the before HERE) with two coordinating lamps.

 

Just $59 each. Gulp.

bedroommakover17

Then I started looking at a few bedroom pictures on Instagram, and realized mirrors above nightstands were all the rage (I had no idea?)

 

So I grabbed two (very small ones ~ at $20 a piece I figured they were perfect!) to match the lamps and headed home.

bedroommakover11

The initial mirrors were way too small, so I checked out Hobby Lobby and found two for $100 each (eek), and asked my hubby what he thought. He didn’t say he hated the idea, so I decided that was a win. 🙂

 

Guys, I feel guilty, but I love it.

 

Total cost to “finish” the room?  (Well, except curtains . . . keep reading . . . ) 

bedroommakover12

Updated alcove project outside our door ~ James also added all the trim work along the hallway upstairs like he’d done on the first floor

$320.

 

Ouch.

 

It wasn’t necessary. We can live without it. We absolutely don’t need it.

 

bedroommakover18

 

But.

 

It makes me ridiculously happy. We had money in savings for it. And I absolutely love it.

 

And, I’m planning to love it for a long long time, because by waiting this long to finish it I’ve figured out what I really do love, and everything I picked I (think?) is pretty timeless.

bedroommakover5

Our make-shift free window shades which we got when we ordered shutters in other rooms of our home. We so need to replace them but I love looking out each day at our view ~ and I know new curtains will cost a bundle ~ eek!

So, there you have it.

bedroommakover10

If you’re new to penny pinching and don’t see the light at the end of the tunnel, let me promise you it’s there.

 

 

By waiting for what we really wanted (instead of what we wanted right now), we can totally see the abundance of having plenty which we didn’t have in those early years.

 

You’ll get there too. 

bedroommakover16

Be patient. Stick with the Goodwill stuff. Check out your local garage sales, thrift stores, and online yard sales.

 

And then.

 

When you’ve penny pinched for just a few years and the money really is finally really in the budget, you can have that room you’ve always dreamed of too.

 

And it’ll be oh-so-worth the wait. 😉 

 

And in the meantime? 

 

Whatever space you have.

 

Whatever you’ve got.

 

Clean it up. De-clutter. De-gunk. De-mess.

 

Because even when you don’t have just the perfect space, the space you have really can be just perfect. 

 

Or at least better.

 

Okay?

 

Take a few minutes this weekend to fluff up a space in your home ~ and make today a beautiful day. 

bedroommakover3

Here’s the only “decoration” we had in our first apartment ~ a Mary Engelbreit card that I put in a $1 Dollar Tree frame. I still love it enough to keep it (hidden a bit!) on our night stand. 🙂 

 

Print Friendly and PDF

DIY Platform Storage Bed On A Budget

diyplatformstoragebeda

 

My friend Misty created this platform bed for her son, and I LOVED the idea! Here’s a peek at how she made it for under $100. 

 

My son turned 13 a couple of months ago, so I decided it was about time to get him out of his twin size bed that he has been in since he was 3!  The only problem was that the old bed had a lot of storage under it, and I did not want to give it up.  I started looking online for options to purchase, which were all too pricey, so I headed over to Pinterest to find ideas.  Here are a few of my favorites pins:

My favorite idea was the first one.  He has links to videos showing the entire process of his build, and I really liked the idea of using cabinets for the base. However, even Ikea cabinets would blow the budget, so I started my hunt for used kitchen or bath base cabinets that I could recycle.

diyplatformbed3

I thought they would be easy to find at thrift stores, but after a couple of weeks searching all the local thrift stores, the Habitat ReStore, and Craigslist, I had not found enough cabinets to match up to build the base.  On to plan B…I found these Better Homes and Gardens Square 4-Cube Organizers at Walmart for only $37.96 each.

 

I liked that these had a 100 lb. weight limit on the top of the cabinet.  I had also seen so many cute pallet wood projects on Pinterest, so I decided to go with the new storage units and the old pallet wood for the rest of the base.

 

diyplatformbed5

 

The next step in the hunting & gathering process was to find the mattress for the bed.  This was important because I needed the exact measurements, including the thickness, to determine the platform size of the base. I wanted the mattress to have a flat transition from the slats to top of the storage units so the mattress could overlap the top of the storage units.  I went with this mattress on Jet.com (also available at Amazon) which had great reviews and only cost $125 (after coupon).

 

I will say I enjoy building things and doing projects on my own, but I couldn’t have done this without my handy husband.  Fortunately we had most of the tools we needed and borrowed the rest so we didn’t have to spend anything on that.  We also had a lot of wood left over from rebuilding our fence a few years ago, so most of the 2×4’s we used came out of that.  We did have to buy three 2x4x96″ studs to run the length of the bed frame and six 1x3x96″ boards for the support slats. We also had to buy screws and a couple of 2×4 hanging brackets.

diyplatformbed6

 

You can also see in this picture that we decided to add a small headboard, which was not in my original idea.  We added it to provide a backstop for his pillows and a shelf for his alarm clock.  We used some of the longer old fence boards to create the headboard. After this step we added the 1×3 slats to the frame to support the mattress evenly and put the assembled storage units into place. (I did not permanently attach them to the base.)

 

diyplatformbed

 

For the footboard, I used an old pallet.  I just measured the opening between the base posts and cut the pallet to fit. I’m planning to add a folding desktop to the footboard in the future…

 

diyplatformbed7

 

The last part of the project was creating a door to conceal the storage area.  I used a scrap piece of plywood for the back of the door then cut pieces of pallet wood to screw to the front creating a really rustic look.  We had already positioned 2 support posts to the base of the bed where I wanted the door to go.  We attached 2 hinges between one of the support posts and the door.

 

diyplatformbed4

 

diyplatformbed2

All in all we ended up spending right at $100 for the materials to build this bed, not including the mattress!  My son loves it, and I’m happy to still have a place to hide the Legos and other stuff that he isn’t quite ready to get rid of yet. 🙂

 

diyplatformstoragebed

 

Print Friendly and PDF

Dollar Tree DIY

dollartreediypb

 

Not gonna lie. This didn’t turn out as my favorite Friday Fluffin’ project ever.

 

dollartreediyb

 

(I really do like this one. And this one. And even this one. But today’s? Not my favorite.)

 

But.

 

I think the idea is good, so I’m sharing it and betting you’ll do it better than me, so maybe it’ll inspire you to just get crafting! 🙂

 

I saw this super smart idea and thought it would be so simple, then Reagan determined that she wanted them pink, and my main goal kind of got lost in the shuffle. So for a $3 craft project with my kids they’re fine, but I’d love to hear if you can come up with something even cuter.

 

When I was racing through the Dollar Tree I didn’t catch that these three plates all the same size (definitely better), and I love the stickers that were used. I was in a hurry (like always!) and made these stencils on my Silhouette Cameo since I didn’t have stickers at home, but I love the idea over here so much more.

 

(I also love this clever way to use these plates. So stinkin’ cute and what I’ll try next time!)

dollartreediy1

All I did was grab three plates at the Dollar Tree for $3 and used spray paint I already had on hand. 

dollartreediy2

 

Then I cut the words using my Silhouette Cameo (you could easily use stickers from the Dollar Tree or Hobby Lobby if you don’t have a Cameo), and painted the inside.

 

dollartreediya

 

The one thing I did LOVE using were these Command Hooks They handled the weight of the plates perfectly, and are easy to remove without putting holes in the wall. Love that!

 

If you have a few minutes this weekend this would be such an easy project, just put a little more forethought into it than I did. 🙂 And don’t forget to swing by the Dollar Tree for some crazy fun deals on 4th of July Decor ~ so fun!

 

7-1-768x768

Looking for more Dollar Tree?

 

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

 

Save

Save

Print Friendly and PDF

Dollar Tree Organizing

dollartreeorganizing1

 

 

 

I love the Dollar Tree

closetmakeover3

 

Really, I do. 🙂 

 

closetmakeover

 

Earlier this week I hauled my nine year old with me to see what we could find (see tons of other items I found at the Dollar Tree over HERE), and when I realized those little storage bins fit our closet shelves perfectly I knew I had to go get more. 

 

closetmakeover6

 

So yesterday I went back to the Dollar Tree one more time, and they had exactly 8 more in the size I needed to quickly tidy up my closet. I threw away and donated things we no longer needed, and in about 30 minutes this mess of a closet was cleaned up.

 

closetmakeover1

 

Success!

 

closetmakeover4

 

Similar bins would have cost me $8-$12 each at the Container Store, so I was just thrilled with my little find. (I even hunted down similar ones on Amazon and noticed these priced at 2/$14.99 ~ crazy!) I paid a whopping $9 total ~ I love that.

 

closetmakeover2

 

If you’ve got some organizing to do this weekend, you might just make a trip to the Dollar Tree to see what you can find.

 

closetmakeover5

 

I found these in the laundry storage section of my store (not in the organizing bin section like I expected), so be sure to keep your eyes peeled for them if you go look! I also found several more projects to craft while I was there, so stop back next week for more Dollar Tree fun. 🙂

 

closetmakeover7

 

 

Looking for more ways to organize at the dollar tree?

 

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

 

Save

Print Friendly and PDF

Fluffed Up Chalkboard Door Hanger

I just fell in love with this cute fluffed up chalkboard door hanger and I know you will too!  Such a fun way to fluff up that front door for the summer and you can even use real flowers from your yard!

 

 

resaleupcycle

Here is what you need to get started:

 

  • Old metal door hanging basket or tin
  • Spray paint
  • Painters tape
  • Chalk paint
  • Foam paint brush
  • Chalk
  • Flowers
  • Newspaper

 

First, you will need to search your local resale stores (or even your closets if you’re like me) for a hanging basket or tin.

 

resaleupcycle2

 

Next you’ll spray paint your hanging basket or tin.  Lay your tin on top of newspaper outside and spray paint it any color you like.  Make sure to let it dry completely.

 

(A great tip to avoid the newspaper getting in the way of your paint is to place rocks on each corner … so smart!)

 

resaleupcycle3

 

 

resaleupcycle4
Once your basket or tin is dry, tape off a small rectangle or square with painters tape for the chalkboard area.

 

resaleupcycle5

 

Use your foam paint brush to paint the inside of the square with black chalk paint, let this dry and then add a second coat.  When your paint is dry, peel your tape off very carefully.

 

resaleupcycle6

 

Write WELCOME on the front and fill with any flowers you like.  I love that you can change WELCOME to anything!

 

resaleupcycle7

 

Hang this cuteness on your door and enjoy your fluffed up chalkboard door hanger!

 

Looking to do more fluffing up?  Here you go . . .

Save

Save

Save

Save

Save

Save

Save

Save

Save

Print Friendly and PDF

You Need To Do This Today.

Screen Shot 2016-06-10 at 11.55.56 AM

My girls are determined that we’re going to get our annual pedicure (I can only stand to pay for it once a year ~ they’ve been patiently waiting!) so this will be the fastest Friday Fluffing you’ve ever seen.  They helped me tackle the project this morning to earn cute toes! 🙂 

Screen Shot 2016-06-10 at 11.56.33 AM

My closet has been in some serious need of attention for the last few months, but much like our mudroom it’s been put on the back burner.

 

So today I set aside a few hours and did a ton of cleaning out. It’s not all that Pinterested (really, who sees our closets?) but it’s so much better. And, I’ll save a bundle on summer clothes because now I know what I already have. (See how we updated this closet last year for FREE ~ love that!)

Before . . .  Screen Shot 2016-06-10 at 11.56.17 AM

 

Ack!
Screen Shot 2016-06-10 at 11.56.05 AM

During (yikes . . . )Screen Shot 2016-06-10 at 11.55.56 AM

After . . .

Screen Shot 2016-06-10 at 11.55.50 AM

Other than swapping the mirror and our little rolling cabinet, all I did was tidy things up a bit. James still needs to finish up his side, but mine is done!

Screen Shot 2016-06-10 at 11.55.39 AM

And here’s what’s heading to our local free store. I didn’t even take pictures with anything other than my iPhone, but this project is just about done, so that’s my win for the week. Success!
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 more previous Friday Fluff Up projects and ideas . . . and Happy Fluffing!

 

Interact with 500,000+ Penny Pinchers on Facebook and Twitter or Subscribe to Passionate Penny Pincher by email to keep up with all the penny pinchin’ deals!

 

Print Friendly and PDF

Mudroom Makeover (More Than A Makeover)

 

img_5304

If you’re here just for the deals scoot on to the next penny-post ~ this one’s a doozie! And, know that I know SO MANY OF YOU have hardships so much greater than mine, I feel almost silly even sharing this here. But maybe you’re in a funk too ~ and maybe this one’s just for you. 

 

Good gravy.

 

This week as I was debating what home project to tackle as our regular Friday Fluff Up, I started dreaming up ideas for our mudroom.

 

I really wanted this, or this, or even this, but the truth is the space isn’t huge and I don’t have any business right now spending lots of money on it, so it just needed some TLC.

img_5264

Since my husband’s heart attack just over a month ago, I’ve allowed clutter and gunk and schoolwork and coats and hats and heart attack papers and all of it to just take over that space.

 

(If you know me well you know that’s just not the norm for me ~ but goodness it’s turned into a disaster!)

img_5265

I just didn’t want to deal with the mess, so I rounded up my youngest and spent a few hours shopping, dreaming up ways to make that space just a wee bit more Pinterested before coming home and setting to work.

 

As I started muddling through, I realized that it wasn’t any new fancy stuff that tiny space needed.

 

It was a much needed attitude shift.

 

You see, since his heart attack I’ve (we’ve all?) been in this sort of funk.

img_5266

I didn’t want to deal with the paperwork.

 

I didn’t want to look at insurance claims.

 

I didn’t want to read through mounds of heart attack literature.

 

I didn’t want to learn a million-bazillion ways to control his cholesterol.

 

(For the record, he’s really changed his diet on his own and we’re all working even harder to eat the right foods ~ I just didn’t want to read any more about it!)

 

I didn’t want to be the 40-year-old wife of a 45-year-old husband who’d had a heart attack.

mudroom3

There. I said it.

 

I wanted to stay a regular mom with a regular life and regular kids and a regular-not-so-much-struggling life.

 

I’m betting you get that.

 

And honestly? (if I’m being real-real-deeply honest here?)

 

Ever since moving two years ago I’ve just kind of been in a funk. (Y’all who know me best know that’s the case ~ I can hide it on the outside but here in my heart it’s tough to hide.)

 

So I just let the piles keep climbing.

 

I let the shoes take over the floor.

 

I shoved the paperwork on top of the cabinets. And hid some inside the closet. (eek.) And just decided if it was all stuffed somewhere I didn’t really have to deal with any of it.

 

I just didn’t want any of this turn of events. 

 

I didn’t want my life to look different.

 

I just didn’t want to deal with the mess of it.

 

In my heart or on my countertops. 

 

whew.

 

So when I came home with all my cute stuff from Home Goods and Michael’s Wednesday night and realized it wasn’t any “fluffing” that needed to happen, but rather just a good case of me being real about life, I determined to get it together.

mudroom4

I de-gunked.

img_5309

I sorted through the paper work.

img_5299

I made files named “James’s heart stuff.”

 

I saved files about medications I really care nothing to know about.

mudroom2

I pulled up my big-girl-panties and decided to deal with what the last six weeks have doled out.

 

ooch.

 

Do you know what?

 

It feels better.

img_5343

The space is cleaned out. I’m still the same regular mom that I was a month ago. We still have the regular life that we had months ago. My husband didn’t really age a million years like I feel he has.

 

We’re just us.

Screen Shot 2016-06-03 at 10.16.43 AM

And we’re going to be okay.

img_5298

You may have so. many. struggles. so so much bigger than mine.

 

You may be dealing with a debilitating illnesses, the long-term sicknesses of a child, or the loss of something or even someone so very precious and dear to you.

 

And like me, you may think that if you just shove the clutter all away none of this stuff will really be real.

 

But, precious one, you and I know it doesn’t work that way.

mudroom1

If you’re drowning in stuff because you don’t want to deal with the real issues, I encourage you to pull up those big girl panties with me and  just de. mess.

 

De-clutter.

 

De-gunk.

 

De. funk.

mudroom5

You will feel better.

 

You will find order.

 

You will be no less precious than you were before the mess.

 

Because even when life doesn’t hand us what we choose, we still get to choose what we make of it.

mudroom6

Make your life beautiful today.

 

If that means you need a de-cluttering and a de-gunking and a de-funking, come along with me and find beauty right where you’re at.

 

If you’re in a hospital room holding the hand of a loved one, tidy things up a bit and make that that space for them just feel beautiful. But most importantly hold on tightly and let them know they’re loved.

 

If you’re home in the summertime and your kids have taken over your home (ahem), take a break from the crazy and head outside to pick some fresh greenery, then come on in and sweep up the floor.

 

If you’re at work and the clutter on your desk is overwhelming you, clean off that space, put up a favorite quote and stay motivated in your work today.

 

And if you’re the sweet momma of a tiny one who hasn’t allowed you to have a shower in too many days to count, find a safe spot for that baby for twenty minutes, hop in the shower and make yourself feel beautiful today.

 

You can find beauty wherever you are. I just know you can. 

 

I’m thinking of you folks right now who walk beside me or even through something so much harder, and am praying a beautiful day for you no matter what life hands you today.

 

Make today a beautiful day. 

 

 

 

 

Print Friendly and PDF

Super Smart Way to Store Ground Beef (Genius!)

storegroundbeef

My friend Jamie is here today sharing this SUPER smart way to store ground beef! I *love* this idea, and will be doing it in the future since we have a small freezer. Thanks so much for sharing Jamie!

If you buy ground beef or ground turkey in bulk to save money – this is such a clever idea to store it!  The flat little bricks make it easy to thaw and cook whenever you need it –  and help you avoid wasting meat by forgetting it.  (Has that ever happened to you?  I know it has to me!)

1 . Start with any ground meat (turkey, beef, chicken, venison, etc…) a rolling pin and a gallon freezer bag.

(If you don’t have a rolling pin, but maybe have a wine bottle in the house, that would work too.)

Put the ground meat in the bottom of the bag and lie it down flat, leaving the zipper part open.

 

groundbeef2

2 . Using a rolling pin, roll to flatten the meat and spread it out in the bag evenly.

groundbeef3

3 . Using a ruler, or the back of a long knife, press lines to divide the meat into six sections.

Freeze for 30 minutes and pull out.  (It should be mostly frozen already)  Bend at the dividing lines until it is separated more cleanly into bricks.  Now just seal the zipper and place back in the freezer to use whenever you need ~ you’ll be able to pull off just one brick at a time to thaw the next time you need ground beef!

 

I think this is just SO super smart. It takes up so little space in the fridge and really makes it easy to thaw out when you’re ready to cook. LOVE simple tricks like this!

storegroundbeef

Print Friendly and PDF

Dollar Tree Teacher Gifts

Dollar Tree Teacher Gifts

pppdollartreeteacher9

It’s the end of the school year and you moms with school-aged kiddos know what that means . . . time to come up with simple teacher gift ideas! With three children at three different schools, the number of teachers we give to can really add up, so I love finding Dollar Tree Teacher gift ideas to let them know we do so appreciate them. (I usually add a gift card also for their primary teachers, but my kids love having a small gift to give too!)

 

pppdollartreeteacher6

We actually made these at my 9 year old’s birthday party as an activity to keep the girls busy (so if you’re looking to do some party crafting, these work great for that too), and saved the mug to give to her teacher. Gotta love getting two projects knocked out at once!

 

pppdollartreeteacher8

 

Here’s what we used:

  • Design your own mugs – $1 – Dollar Tree
  • Post it Notes – $1 – Dollar Tree
  • Clip boards (I forgot to get a picture) – $1 – Dollar Tree
  • Plastic photo frames – $1 – Dollar Treepppdollartreeteacher

pppdollartreeteacher1

  • Scrapbook paper & ribbon (we already had ours from Hobby Lobby but the Dollar Tree carries it too)
  • Mod podge (for clipboard)
  • tape runner (this is my all time favorite tape runner for crafting)
  • Silhouette Cameo for monograms (you could totally make similar projects without a Cameo, but I do love mine! Hobby Lobby carries pre-cut monograms or stickers which would work perfectly too.)

pppdollartreeteacher2

To make the mugs we just cut paper to fit the inside of the mug, then added some ribbon and a monogram. 

pppdollartreeteacher3

For the clipboards (this was the hardest project!) we used mod podge to add paper to the clipboard, then added ribbon and a monogram.

pppdollartreeteacher4

The post it note caddy was the simplest project (and least expensive.)

pppdollartreeteacher7

Just use scrapbook paper to make a design on the back of your plastic frame, and add the post it notes using some tape runner. (Reagan added these while at  her party ~ they’re not quite straight but it’ll do!)

pppdollartreeteacher5

 

So there you have it! Three super simple Dollar Tree DIY projects that are great for teacher gifts or even just to let your kids make over the weekend. These are perfect to give with a gift card, but let your kids bring a gift to their teacher too, all without busting your budget. 🙂

 

Looking for more gift ideas?  Here you go . . .

Print Friendly and PDF

My Favorite Goodwill Find

My Favorite Goodwill Find

pppgoodwillfind2

I’ve been meaning to share this with you all for months, and finally got around to it this week!  A few months ago my sixteen year old and I were looking for ways to update his bedroom (he inherited my husband’s Ethan Allen headboard & dresser from the 70’s which is actually still in great shape and pretty classic, but we haven’t done much to update his room since moving to Ohio.)

 

So I started watching Pinterest and saw this super cute idea for a bedside table and knew it was right up his alley. I showed it to him and he loved it too ~ so we headed to Goodwill to see what we could find.

pppgoodwillfind4

Never in a bajillion years would I have dreamt that on our very first trip to Goodwill we would luck into these. I literally heard him holler across the store “Momma, it’s our lucky day!”

 

(Teaching a 16 year old boy to love Goodwill like me is one of my most proud mommy-ing moments.) 🙂 

 

pppgoodwillfind8

 

We took them home . . .

pppgoodwillfind1

Loaded them up with books and memorabilia that he wanted to keep but didn’t need to be out in the middle of the room,

 

pppgoodwillfind3

And stacked them on top of one another for his nightstand.

 

pppgoodwillfind5

They were in great shape (perfectly kept on the inside), so we didn’t have a single bit of work to do!

pppgoodwillfind6

I’d love to know the places this stack of luggage has been to over the years, and love that they’re a fun way to re-use someone else’s treasures. We spend $15 on all 3, and I love that they’re just something quirky in his room!

 

pppgoodwillfind7

Have you found any fun finds lately at Goodwill or you local thrift store? I’d love to hear what you’ve scored! Leave a comment to share (I love hearing from you!)

7itemsgoodwill

Can’t get enough Goodwill?

Print Friendly and PDF

Orange Bird Feeder

ppporangebirdfeeder8

 

Looking for a fun and frugal project to make with your kids this weekend? I love this!

 

ppporangebirdfeeder

Here’s what you’ll need:

  • Large oranges
  • Bird seed
  • Skinny ribbon
  • Sharpened pencil
  • Scissors
  • Spoon

ppporangebirdfeeder6

 

Directions
1. Cut your orange in half

 

ppporangebirdfeeder2
2. Scoop out (and eat) the inside of the orange

 

ppporangebirdfeeder3
3. Poke four holes opposite each other, towards the top of the orange like so

ppporangebirdfeeder4

 
4. Cut two 8″ pieces of ribbon, tie one end in one hole and the other in the opposite hole
5. Repeat step 4 with your other ribbon

 

ppporangebirdfeeder5
6. Fill your orange up with bird seed
7. Now cut a 5″ piece of ribbon and use to tie the top of the ribbons together, then onto a tree branch

ppporangebirdfeeder7

Looking for more spring projects?  Here you go . . .

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!)

Interact with 480,000+ Penny Pinchers on Facebook and Twitter or Subscribe to Passionate Penny Pincher by email to keep up with all the penny pinchin’ deals!

 

 

 

 

 

Print Friendly and PDF

Trinket Tray

ppptrinkettray9

I love this cute trinket tray, and it would make such a simple Mother’s Day or teacher appreciation gift!

 

ppptrinkettray

 

Here’s what you’ll need to get started: 

  • Terracotta tray – I used the 4″ inch size
  • White paint – I used the acrylic kind sold at craft stores
  • Foam brush
  • Stencil of choice – purchased mine at Hobby Lobby
  • Gold paint pen or gold paint – found at craft stores

 

ppptrinkettray2

 

 

Start by painting your terracotta tray white.

 

ppptrinkettray3

 

 

Be sure to paint the bottom side too to finish the look.

 

 

ppptrinkettray5

 

 

ppptrinkettray6

 

When the paint is completely dry, center your stencil on the tray.

 

ppptrinkettray7

 

 

I used my gold paint pen and went right over the stencil.  (some paint pens bleed so you could trace the stencil with pencil then use your pen to fill in if you prefer)

 

 

ppptrinkettray8

 

 

Remove stencil carefully.

 

 

ppptrinkettray10

 

 

Allow to dry completely and you’re done. So fun!

 

Looking for more spring projects?  Here you go . . .

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!)

Interact with 470,000+ Penny Pinchers on Facebook and Twitter or Subscribe to Passionate Penny Pincher by email to keep up with all the penny pinchin’ deals!

 

Print Friendly and PDF

Simple Easter Centerpiece

pppcarrotscenterpiece2

I love this cute Easter centerpiece, using just a few items from your local craft store!

 

pppcarrotscenterpiece4

 

 

Here’s what you’ll need:

Large mason jar, glass
Plastic carrots (found at Michael’s Craft Store, sold in sets of three ~ you could even use real carrots which I think would look so cute)
Burlap Ribbon, thick, plain
Accent ribbon in choice of color, medium width
Twine
Hot glue, glue gun
Scissors

 

pppcarrotscenterpiece5

 

Begin by wrapping the thick, plain burlap ribbon around your mason jar. Cut it to fit and attach it with some hot glue.

 

pppcarrotscenterpiece6
Add another cute ribbon on top (whatever you have laying around is fine) on top of the thick ribbon and secure into place with a little more hot glue.
pppcarrotscenterpiece3

At the top of the jar, add a cute little twine bow (or ribbon of your choice) …

 

Add the carrots into the jar … and you’re done!

pppcarrotscenterpiece1

 

You could always add some pebbles or grass at the bottom of the jar first, but to make it simple I just dropped them right in and they look great on their own.

 

pppcarrotscenterpiece2

 
Make a grouping of these to display together, or let this piece shine all on its own. Fun!

 

Looking for more spring projects?  Here you go . . .

Print Friendly and PDF

Mod Podge Eggs

pppeggstencil6

 

Looking for a fun unique way to decorate Easter eggs? 

 

This one is so simple, and I love the way it turned out.

pppeggstencil1

Gather up your supplies:

  • hardboiled eggs
  • mod podge (Target has small bottles sometimes in their $1 bins)
  • Easter die cute shapes (I made a few using my silhouette cutter)
  • sponge paint brush

pppeggstencil3

Place shapes on eggs and let kids “paint” them on

pppeggstencil4

Done!

pppeggstencil5

I wouldn’t eat these, but they’re so pretty for Easter decor. Fun!

 

 

Looking for more Easter projects? Here you go . . .

Print Friendly and PDF

Our Small Dining Room Update (After 20 Years . . . )

pppdiningredo7

 

It’s always amazing to me what making just a few tiny changes can do to a room.

pppdiningredo1A

As I’ve shared before, almost twenty years ago we were given my husband’s grandparents dining room set, and while I was thrilled to have them, they’ve never been exactly what I would choose.

(And up until this point, we’d spent $150 to furnish our entire dining room ~ not too shabby.) 

pppdiningredo3A

So I’ve recovered those dining room chairs four times (they have lots of padding now at least?), and while it’s helped, they’ve just never been my favorites. 

pppdiningredo6A

So a few weeks ago when I  noticed these benches at Home Goods, my mind got to wandering.

 

I knew they were different, but wasn’t quite sure if our dining room could pull them off.

 

A friend of mine suggested moving the piano (but I had no idea where it could go?) until I called a local moving company and said for $100 they could  move it to our finished basement.

pppdiningredo5A

Guys, I was thrilled. 

 

(I love that piano, but it’s never had a perfect home. Now it has it’s place!)

pppdiningredo1A

before

So, I was freed up with all this space, and possibly room for those benches too. 

 

And I did it.

Screen Shot 2016-03-18 at 12.50.00 PM

E.e.e.e.e.k.

pppdiningredo4A

I don’t love the rug at all now that the benches are there ~ it’s moving to the foyer as soon as I can get some help with the heavy lifting! 🙂 

I would have loved to have found four matching chairs to use with just a bench on one side, but my kids have fallen in love with those benches ~ they hang out there doing their homework, so I think they’re both sticking around. 

 

(The benches. And the kids. Can’t get rid of either very easily, right?) 🙂 

 

pppdiningredo2A

And, while we did spend some moo-lah on those benches, to have a totally updated look after twenty years seems worth it to me. 🙂

pppdiningredo11

 

As we’re getting ready for Easter I’ve been playing with the table settings, and thought y’all would enjoy a peek at that too . .  .

pppdiningredo12

I purchased the big glass hurricane at Michael’s with a 40% off coupon, and of course used a can to beef up the candle. 🙂

 

pppdiningredo9

I cut out simple bunnies from white card stock on my Silhouette, and the napkins tied with pink ribbon (all courtesy of Home Goods ~ I love that store!)

pppdiningredo8

pppdiningredo7

 

 

The super cute little nests were from Michael’s as well ~ for 3/$2.99 I just couldn’t pass them by. I adore them!

 

pppdiningredo2A

And really, I know it’s not exactly perfect, but I’m loving our fluffed up space. (Still dreaming of curtains, but baby steps, right?) 🙂

pppdiningredo5A

If you’d like to see more pictures of our home as we’ve been updating it, here you go, and if you’re working on a project in your home or have any other suggestions for our space, I’d love to hear them. Leave a comment to share!

PPPbunny17

 

Looking for more Easter projects? Here you go . . .

Print Friendly and PDF

Crafting {from the Target One Spot} + Free Printable!

burlapbunny

Note from Laurie: My friend Cheryl made this AMAZINGly adorable Easter bunting and bags using items from the Target One Spot, and even created a free printable so you can make them too! Hurry to the Target One Spot because the burlap pre-cut flags and bags are selling FAST, and go HERE to print your free printable so you can make them too. 

 

ppptargeteasterclearence8

We host an Easter brunch every year, so when I saw that Target had some great crafting supplies I knew I had to come up with something fun to make. I created this free printable that you can use as well, and am in love with this fun Easter project!

 

PPPbunny17

 

Here’s what I used (I had almost everything at home, so spent just a few dollars at the Target One Spot bins)  . . . 

 

PPPbunny1

  • Scissors
  • Iron
  • Fabric (any fabric will do)
  • Burlap Bags (Target One Spot) $1.00 each
  • Burlap Flags (Target One Spot) $3.00 package (includes 8 flags)
  • Twine (Target One Spot) $1.00
  • Gift Tags (Target One Spot) $1.00 (includes 8 tags)
  • Bunny Shapes (PPP is so excited for you to have the free printable in just the right sizes!)
  • Wonder Under
  • Pencil

 

PPPbunny2

 

Print your free printable here – then cut out your shape to use as a guide.

 

 

PPPbunny3

 

Perfect fit!

PPPbunny4

Trace your bunnies on the paper side of the wonder under (is this stuff amazing or what?!)  Then iron the wonder under to your fabric until it adheres.

 

PPPbunny7

 

Cut bunnies out for gift bags . . .

 

PPPbunny9

After you cut out the bunny, remove the paper portion of the wonder under and iron your bunny to your bag.

PPPbunny10

Seriously … how cute are these?

PPPbunny5

 

Follow the same instructions when making your bunny bunting – using the smaller bunny shape.
PPPbunny8

PPPbunny11

 

 

I filled these cute bags up with candy and added on gift tags I found in the Target bins too.

PPPbunny15

 

Such fun gift bags for Easter morning!

 

 

 

PPPbunny21

PPPbunny14

PPPbunny16


Have you found any spring crafts to make this Spring? I’d love to hear what you’re making! Leave a comment to share. 

 

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!)

dollartreeeasterdecor2

Looking for more penny pinched projects? Here you go . . .

 

Print Friendly and PDF

Easter DIY: No Sew Burlap Bunny Pillow

pppbunnypillow14

I’m feeling so crafty this week! I saw an idea over here a few days ago (I love everything I see at On Sutton Place) and realized I had all the supplies right at home.

pppbunnypillow1

So, I spent about 30 minutes yesterday making this simple pillow cover, and am so pleased with how it turned out. 

Here’s what I used (I had everything at home so didn’t spend  a penny!)

pppbunnypillow2

pppbunnypillow3

pppbunnypillow4

pppbunnypillow5

pppbunnypillow6

pppbunnypillow7

pppbunnypillow8

pppbunnypillow9

pppbunnypillow12

 

And, don’t forget to swing by the Target One Spot. . . 

img_4766

Spring decorating done! 🙂 

img_4769


Have you found any spring crafts to make this Spring? I’d love to hear what you’re making! Leave a comment to share. 

 

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!)

dollartreeeasterdecor

Looking for more penny pinched projects? Here you go . . .

 

Print Friendly and PDF