Wednesday, June 4, 2014

You Can Recycle Your Ziploc Bags!

I have always felt so guilty throwing away Ziploc sandwich and gallon bags because I was under the impression that they could not be recycled. Many other people I know think the same thing. I even turned to my coworker just now and asked, "Hey did you know you can recycle Ziploc bags?" Her response: "Really? You can?"

The bags have to be clean to be recycled. Check out this post from The Yummy Life for easy instructions on how to clean, reuse, and store Ziploc bags. According to the Ziploc's Sustainability page on their website you can drop off the bags at any local grocery store that also has the plastic bag recycling. Apparently you can also recycle bread bags and produce bags there too.

I am glad I decided to research this topic after reading a comment on a forum. I try not to use these bags because of the waste factor, but now when I do use them I won't feel so guilty because I know that they can be recycled into cool things such as playground equipment, park benches, and fences via composite lumber.

Tuesday, June 3, 2014

Books or Kindle or Both?

I cannot decide between owning books, owning a bunch of books on a Kindle, or having the best of both worlds by doing both. I want the Kindle for simplicity. I want the books so my baby can have a lot of reading material on hand when he's older. I want both so I can have reading material (in case of a technology blackout) available and the ability to read books in the dark, in the car, and other places where lugging a big book around is inconvenient.

I bet if I traded in all my books I could buy a Kindle right now...but there are some books I will definitely reread. There are a bunch of books on my shelves that I haven't even read yet. (Why is it we can own so many things and not use them?) I'm thinking once I get through my current library book queue that I need to focus on reading the books on the shelves, purging the ones I don't care for, and trading those in for a Kindle. What a slow process though.

Why are we so attached to books? Why are more people not attached to books? In the event of a fire or other natural disaster, and I had the chance to grab just a few things, I don't think I would take any books along. But what if I had a Kindle, and the power was out for several days, and I didn't have a solar powered charger?

I guess I feel guilty having so many books on shelves when I am really wanting to minimize the clutter in my house. Books aren't clutter...right?

Do you own a Kindle or other ebook reader? Do you also own books? What are your thoughts?

Monday, June 2, 2014

Read This Book If You Want to Learn to Coupon

I have been casually couponing for over a year now, and I still have so much to learn. It is a constantly changing industry, and between the TLC's Extreme Couponing tv show and seeing those huge coupon binders a newbie is bound to feel overwhelmed.

But it doesn't have to be that way.

If you are wanting to learn the basics of couponing then I suggest you read the book: The Complete Idiot's Guide to Couponing by Rachel Singer Gordon.

It is an easy read book that goes over the basics from couponing terms to tactics so you can start saving money immediately on your next grocery trip.

Did you know that there are blogs out there that do the hard work for you of matching coupons to sales so you get the best bang for your buck?

Did you know that you can print coupons online and redeem them at your local Walmart, Target, or Kroger store (and if you're lucky your local small grocery store chain)?

I found this book extremely helpful, and I read it for free from my local library. Why coupon? Well...why not? You save money on things you normally buy, you can save money trying something new, and by saving money you are able to splurge elsewhere in your budget.

Just for fun did you know Jay Leno clips coupons? So does Carrie Underwood and Sarah Michelle Gellar. I didn't know that celebrities even bothered until I started couponing myself and did a lot of research for tips and ideas. It makes sense to. Coupons feel like cash in my hand, and it's a great feeling to see how much I save on each shopping trip. I am no extreme couponer, but it's nice to save.

In a future post I will be sharing how you can save money on natural and organic food and products.

Monday, January 13, 2014

A New Year, A New Life.

This is my first post in awhile...because I went and had a baby! <3 He's (super adorable) 7 weeks old and doing great.

In 2014 I plan to simplify. This includes:
  • De-cluttering my house. I want every thing to have its own place. Otherwise it will be donated or given away.
  • Using what I have first. This means eating the old cereal in the pantry before buying new breakfast foods for busy/lazy days as well as using up my craft supplies before buying more.
  • Planning ahead. Meal plans, to do lists, shopping early for gifts, etc.
Among those things I want to personalize my house a bit with decorated switch plates and outlet covers, art prints on the walls, framed pictures of us, seasonal linens (guest bathroom hand towel, the hanging oven towels, etc.) and maybe I will get around to replacing the boring dolphin overhead fan pulls.

And some miscellaneous goals and hopes:
  • Build our savings.
  • Continue to find ways to save money.
  • Participate in an elderly Angel Tree type event for Christmas.
  • Find opportunities to donate.
  • Blog more!
 Happy 2014 to you. What are your goals and hopes this year?

Saturday, September 14, 2013

Skeleton Cupcakes Recipe for Halloween

Source.
























It's not too early to start planning your Halloween treats for your office parties and kid's parties.

I came across these adorable Skeleton Cupcakes that I wanted to share.

Skeleton Cupcake Recipe

Makes 10 servings.


Ingredients:

10 Chocolate Cupcakes
1 stick (1/4 lb.) unsalted butter
1/2 cup shortening
3 cups confectioners' sugar
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/8 teaspoon salt
20 brown M&M's
1 long strand black licorice
25 white mini jellybeans
10 mini Chocolate Cupcakes
1 (9 oz.) box chocolate wafers

Preperation:
  1. Beat together butter and shortening for 2 minutes. Slowly beat in confectioners' sugar. Add vanilla and salt; beat for 1 minute. Mound 1/4 cup frosting in center of top of each larger cupcake.
  2. For faces, add M&M's, pieces of licorice and halved jellybeans (see photo).
  3. For hats, dab frosting on mini cupcakes, invert and stick to chocolate wafers. Put one on each icing mound.

Tuesday, September 3, 2013

Halloween Gift Guide on Pinterest












































Looking for a Halloween gift for a hostess or Halloween party? Do you like to be in the Halloween spirit all year long?

Check out my Halloween Gift Guide on Pinterest featuring items from Zibbet.com the fastest growing marketplace for artisans, suppliers, and vintage sellers.

I will keep adding to it as I find more things to pin. Each item at the time added is available for sale.


Monday, August 19, 2013

50 Things to do to Un Bore Yourself

Are you bored? Are you mindlessly browsing the internet? Are you in need of a distraction? Here are 50 things to do...so do something!

  1. Explore www.bored.com
  2. Write your Christmas cards now.
  3. Pick up 5 things in each room of your house and put them in their rightful place.
  4. Take a walk to somewhere you haven't been before.
  5. Look for blogs to read that pertain to your interests.
  6. Make a budget.
  7. Start a journal to record your thoughts and daily happenings.
  8. Talk to someone you haven't spoken to in awhile.
  9. Go to the library, grab a random book off the shelf, and read it.
  10. Pick up litter on the roads near your home.
  11. Ask a neighbor if they need any help.
  12. Rearrange the furniture in your house.
  13. Visit your favorite store to window shop.
  14. Take the practice driver's test online to see if you still have "it."
  15. Clean all of your appliances.
  16. Volunteer at your local thrift store, library, etc.
  17. Write someone a "thinking of you" card.
  18. Get rid of all your newspapers and catalogs.
  19. Look for things around your house that you aren't using and either sell or donate them.
  20. Write a meal plan for the week.
  21. Read the online reviews of local businesses to see what you are missing out on.
  22. Explore a local park.
  23. Read your local newspaper.
  24. Write a guest column for your local newspaper.
  25. Send an email to one of your favorite brands and tell them what you like about their product(s).
  26. Listen to music you listened to in high school.
  27. Bake bread from scratch.
  28. Wash your curtains.
  29. Write a letter to an overseas soldier.
  30. Find an email penpal.
  31. Dust every surface in your home.
  32. Grab two random objects in your bedroom and write a short story that includes both items.
  33. Gather flowers from outside to make your own bouquet to freshen up your kitchen.
  34. Take a short walk around your house and take pictures of anything that inspires you.
  35. Update your resume.
  36. Start a website or blog.
  37. Try out a new recipe.
  38. Throw a dinner party.
  39. Write out your 5 year plan.
  40. Go through old pictures to relive the memories.
  41. Draw something.
  42. Create a time capsule and stash it somewhere in your home.
  43. Offer to babysit for one of your friends or family members that never has time to go out alone.
  44. Go through all of your clothes and get rid of the ones you haven't worn in awhile.
  45. Learn to meditate.
  46. Play a game of cards.
  47. Take a nap.
  48. Try your hand at drawing; be it a pet, a portrait, or an object.
  49. Tackle a repair project in your home that you've been putting off.
  50. Wash all your windows inside and out.

What do you do when you find yourself bored? Feel free to leave a comment. Thank you for reading!
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