Thursday, December 22, 2016

5-minute Christmas Decor Ideas

Nobody has a moment to spare this time of year.  We've all got never-ending lists of things to do before the holiday and the new year.  Today, I'm sharing a few decor ideas that take about 5 minutes to pull together.

1.  Make Gift Wrap Frames

I didn't get a good picture of the wall and I'm sorry but the photo above doesn't do it justice.  For the youth holiday fellowship, I used Dollar Tree frames and scrap pieces of wrapping paper to create easy artwork.

You can replace photos with wrapping for the Christmas season or any special occasion!

2.  Hang Printed Gift Boxes

Yep, the boxes that come in packs of 2 or 3 make great wall decor.  I found, individually, I preferred certain designs over others but, when hung altogether, they all look great in a gallery wall design.

I taped the ready-made clothing boxes to the wall to continue the overall feel of gift boxes in the space.  It adds dimension and with a simple strip of tape across the top, it will hang securely and fabulously.

3.  Hang a Wreath in an Unexpected Manner or Location

You can buy a ready-made wreath or keep it simple with a plain wreath.  Whatever you do, get one and hang it.  It's easy to do and provides instant 'spirit.'  If you're looking to spruce things up, consider hanging your wreath in unexpected places or in a unique way.  Remember when Munch made the Halloween B-O-O wreath using Dollar Tree wreath forms and foam core board?

What if you hung J-O-Y using the same technique?  Also, try hanging wreaths over mirrors or cabinets for added texture and visual interest.

4. Use Peppermint

Add peppermint to a dish, buy a pack of candy canes and place them in a jar or.

Voila.  You're holiday festive on a budget and with minimal effort.

These ideas are great for anyone.  They work for the person who has a house full of over-the-top decor but is looking to fill a specific space with some unique decor.  They work for the host of a holiday event on a budget.  They especially work for the person who doesn't have interest or time to decorate but who would like to spruce up their front door or entry area.  If this is you, consider taking 5 minutes and a few bucks to bring some holiday cheer into your home!

Wednesday, December 21, 2016

Pecan Pinwheels: A 5-minute Dessert

Hi, Islanders!  It's been forever.  Like, forever.  I've been living and loving and loving life as I'm living it.  I've promised some updates but for real, they're on the back burner because I've got some 5 minute ideas I need to share over the course of the next few days.  First up?  A five-minute Dessert!

Pretty Pecan Pinwheels


- Store-bought pecan pinwheels
- Canned whipped topping
- Chocolate or caramel syrup
- Crushed pecans


1.  Remove pecan pinwheels from package.  Tip: if preparing for immediate consumption, warm the pinwheels up prior to assembly.

2.  Top with whipped cream.

3.  Drizzle with syrup.

4.  Sprinkle pecans on top.

5.  Place on platter and get ready for compliments :)

This is the perfect dessert for the commuter who wants to participate in the office potluck but doesn't have the means to carry a lot of food on the road; these supplies pack easily in most bags and can be assembled onsite!  I also love that they look fancy and homemade.  Plus, they're effortless and affordable!

Head to your local grocery store and whip up some  last-minute and fabulous desserts!

Wednesday, December 14, 2016

WW: Thanksgiving 2016

Wordless Wednesday


Tuesday, December 13, 2016

OTW: Holidays, Decor, DIY

Hi, Islanders!

It's been far too long.  I have so much to share!  

Thanksgiving was awesome.  I'll share pics tomorrow.  

Christmas is upon us.  The decor is coming together.  I've got tips and plans... new trees to share and more.  I found some awesome and affordable gift ideas.  Christmas dinner is at our house and I'm getting super excited.  Oh, and Pinky, our elf on the shelf, has returned.

Home projects are looking amazing.  I've been updating the new place and I've found some amazing deals and new products.  I can't wait to share the progress and introduce our home; I'm quite pleased with the spaces.

Stay tuned.  I've got good stuff on the way (OTW)!

Tuesday, November 22, 2016

Turkey Bow Tutorial

Howdy, Islandes!  I'm sharing this post again for the turkey bow.  It's easy and fab and such a great accent to any outfit.  ENJOY!

**Originally published November 26, 2013**

Good morning, Islanders!

It's finally time to share the infamous Turkey Bow tutorial.  I've received requests for this tutorial since 2010 when I made Munch's first bow (see the post with its debut here) so I know you're excited!!


- Brown Ribbon (20 inches)
- Pink Ribbon (less than 1 inch)
- Ribbon for Feathers (your choice)
- String
- Hot Glue Gun
- Lighter
- Clippie or Headband


Note: thinner ribbon works better for this design.

1. Cut the brown ribbon into the following pieces - 3 in., 2 in., 1.5 in., and two (2) 1 in. pieces

2.  Glue the ends of the 3 in., 2 in., 1.5 in. pieces together to create a loops like this:

3.  For the 1 in. pieces, create a flat loop (pictured below to the far right):

4.  Stack the loops according to size (dabbing glue at each layer's meeting point):

Back view

Front view

5. Repeat with the two remaining loops to create the turkey head.  Glue the head on top of the body:

6.  Cut 5 pieces of the feather ribbon(s) to be 2 in. long.  Create the open loops:

7.  Glue the loops to the back of the turkey:

8.  Cut a small triangle for the beak and a squiggly strip for the "turkey jiggle" (as Munch calls it):

9.  Glue to clippie (after covering with brown ribbon OR to piece of felt for headband.

10.  Enjoy your festive and fabulous turkey bow!!!

Once I made one, I stopped measuring and whipped up bows for all of our friends.  They make great gifts for little girls:

PLUS, a few spools of ribbon really go a LONG way!


Thursday, November 10, 2016

TBT: Thanksgiving Decor For Less!

This post was originally published on Your Finances Simplified in 2011!  I was reminded of it today and wanted to share this gem.  I guess it is Throwback Thursday!

Am I the only person who woke up to the reality that Thanksgiving is upon us? By wake-up, I mean my “Countdown to Christmas Decor” announcement was interrupted by my 5 year old asking, “how you gon’ decorate for Christmas when we haven’t done anything for Thanksgiving and I don’t have to go to school for that either?!”

UGHFine. I’ll give the holiday its due. I’ll decorate and bake and do the whole turkey thing… I apologize, Thanksgiving, for treating you like the Wednesday of holidays and joining the rush to the holly and the jolly that is Christmas. There. Happy now?
I was faced with the dilemma to decorate on just a few days’ notice.  Of course, this wasn’t going to be a major investment – $15 is all I was willing to give.  After all, this ain’t Christmas! 
When I’m short on cash but big on ideas, I head to my local dollar store, park in the spot with my name (in my head) and walk the aisles until I’m inspired… Here’s how I thriftily (it’s a word, don’t worry) created our last minute Thanksgiving decor:

Friday, November 4, 2016

Halloween 2016: All I Ever Want.

If you've been on the island for awhile, you are well-aware of my crafty mom status.  As you can imagine, I go all glue-crafty crazy for holidays and especially for Halloween.  Remember the $5 costume series of 2015?

Queen of Hearts, anyone?

The crafty clown costume of 2013:

Wednesday, November 2, 2016

WW: Halloween 2016

Wordless Wednesday

Tuesday, November 1, 2016

My Littles: Alani Rose

In my last post, I mentioned that I'm expecting to be an auntie all over again later this spring.  Can I just say, I'm just so excited my list of littles is growing... like, so excited that I could just explode.

Speaking of my littles, do you recall Melina's pink tiffany-themed baby shower?

Well, as you can see in the baby shower photo above, baby was on the way.  Mommy was ready.

I had my snack basket (included in my guide of 13 things you should do for new parents, remember?) ready to go so, I was also ready!

It was August 10th.  I arrived to the hospital for the second time that day to help take care of the other little ones present.  At some point during the afternoon, the delivery room cleared and it was just Melina, her sleeping fiance, her mom, her older sister, and me.  

A drugged Melina called me over to her bedside.  When I got close, she started to speak...

Goodwill Finds: The Magnolia Wreath

Happy Friday, Islanders. I wanted to share a thrifty find from a while back.  Ugh, I love my local Goodwill Outlet.  Oh, and yes, you saw ...

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