Pinspiration | Painting Project

This year, I’m learning to live with less in my 2014 Simplicity theme year.  That means finding innovative ways to save money so we can spend our money in the places we really need to (or want to). Living with two small boys, we’re always looking for fun, cheap activities that we can do together – I’ve got a great Pinterest board of kid-friendly activities!

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Pinspiration: Painting Project. I love to paint. It’s an activity that I can regularly do with the kids. We make the most of our nice weather and spend time outside with our paints and canvases.

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Pinspiration: Make Your Own Febreze (on the cheap)

This year, I’m learning to live with less in my 2014 Simplicity theme year.  That means finding innovative ways to save money so we can spend our money in the places we really need to (or want to). Living with two small boys, I have many opportunities for our house and things to get pretty stinky pretty quickly. I’m a fan of the original, but not the price! When I looked online for other options, I found this recipe and I love it.

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Pinspiration: Make Your Own Febreze. This easy, useful project can be completed in 15 minutes. And the recipe seems to hold up to the original very well.  Recently, my husband even commented about how good our room smelled after I’d sprayed my mix – awesome!

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Pinspiration | Soaking Bath Salts

This year, I’m learning to live with less in my 2014 Simplicity theme year.  That means finding innovative ways to save money so we can spend our money in the places we really need to (or want to). Ever since I started running, I’ve been using bath salts more and more, and I love them. And the recipe is so simple (and includes a cheat!) – and best of all, they make great and inexpensive gifts.

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Pinspiration: Soaking Bath Salts. This easy, useful project can be completed in 15 minutes. And recipes save your tired, achy muscles and make cute, inexpensive gifts.  We made these gifts for all of our kids teachers, our friends and our family (and I saved a few for myself, too).  These hard-working bath salts remove toxins from the body, relax muscles and help calm the spirit.  They are so easy to make – worth it!

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14 tips to make this the best year ever

Each new year, I hear many people discussing their goals and resolutions and then 4-6 weeks later, everything is back to before and people feel trapped by their choices and guilty for their failure.  Start this year right and think about what you can really accomplish.  It will be easier than you think to make goals and stick with them this year – you can make lasting change in your life and this is the year to make it happen.

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1. Give up the guilt. You can’t do everything and you won’t be good at everything – no big deal. Learn from your failures & mistakes and it will all be worth it in the end.

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Smart Savings | Give Better Gifts & Spend Less Money

You can give better gifts and spend less money while doing it.  Plus you’ll be less stressed, have the time you need to get everything done and be ready at a moment’s notice for any occasion. Sound to good to be true? Believe me, you can do it.  Start today with your preparation for your gift giving for the year.  With a little planning & preparation, you can make gifts something you look forward to giving as much as receiving.

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Shop the sales now and stock up on essentials. Now is the best time to buy the extras that you need for your holiday and birthday celebrations.  Wrapping paper, gift bags and trimmings are all at least 50% off.  We went shopping the day after Christmas and picked up gift bags, fancy plates and tons of extras.  We’re ready for next year and this year hasn’t even ended yet.  Pro Tip! Purchase generic holiday paper (like that striped paper) that could easily work for birthdays and other celebrations.

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Organized Family Photos

Your family photos can be organized and you don’t have to hire a professional to make it happen. By using simple strategies, you’ll be able to keep your favorite family memories in an easy-to-use system that takes minimal time and has big results.

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Upload Photos Regularly.

I have my computer at work set up so that every morning when I come in I upload photos as part of my routine. I plug in my iPhone, upload the photos and organize them into the correct folder. The entire process takes about 3 minutes each morning. Set this up on the computer you use most often, so you’re always ready to keep your photos organized.
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Magnificent Meal Planning

Your meals can be easier and healthier, it just takes a little prep & planning.  By using these simple practices, you’ll be able to save time and money while still making healthy meals for yourself and your family.

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Prep Basics When You Have Time.

I spend Saturday mornings chopping fruits/vegetables, cooking bulk rice/pasta and making healthy snacks for the kids.  Sunday afternoons are usually bread machine baking, Monday meal planning and meal list making.  By using my available free time to plan for the upcoming weeks, I’m able to keep my healthy options organized for my family’s meals.

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