We’re baaaaaaack!

After a long break from blogging, we have some exciting news to share. We bought our first house! In the coming weeks we will be posting updates on our house, since it is in dire need of some work. We have already started work on it (since we closed on it in February) but we aren’t officially moved in yet.
And just for fun, here is a little teaser:

house

One heck of a deal

Back at the end of September we so excitedly purchased a memory foam mattress for a mere $340.53. It’s no secret that we love saving money any way we can (I’m a major penny pincher), so this purchase was a no brainer for us. When we moved to our apartment in May of this year, we took my old mattress from my parents house. It was a standard pillow-top matress with springs that left us both waking up with back aches and other pains. Now, we weren’t looking for a new mattress or had even really thought of upgrading to a new one, but when I checked my email for the day and saw a groupon for a memory foam mattress,at up to 79% off no less, I couldn’t help but take a peek. Once I told Josh about the deal (he had been wanting a memory foam matress for as long as I can remember and used memory foam pillows too) he instantly said we should go for it. So we did- and we couldn’t be happier! The overall cost breakdown was this:

mattress: $329 – $10 off coupon= $319

shipping: free

With taxes we ended up paying a staggering $340. 53!

The list price was $1,200 so we ended up saving ourselves $859.47

It’s been a couple months since we started sleeping on it and I thought it would be fitting to write a little review of sorts for anyone who is a bit nervous or unsure about purchasing a memory foam mattress of their own. Let me start off by saying: we love ours. We no longer suffer from back pain and we wake up feeling more energized. With the old mattress, we would constantly wake each other up by tossing and turning but with the memory foam we hardly ever wake each other up or have to move around to get comfortable. If I had to rate it from 1-10, I would give it a solid 8.

We also were able to give my parents the other mattress to use in my old bedroom (which they were converting into a guest bedroom at the time). So it worked out perfectly.  And with a deal that good, who could pass it up?

If anyone is interested, I posted a link to the mattress’ website above, but just incase the mattress  we purchased was by Nature’s Sleep.

Tis the season!

Josh and I are all set to celebrate our first (married) Christmas together! The tradition in Josh’s family is that they usually have a real tree and in my family we have always had an artificial tree. I was super stoked to finally try out having a real tree, when our apartment complex notified us that we are only allowed artificial trees due to the fire hazard of real trees. Understandable. Being that our apartment is only 400 sq feet, we didn’t feel like we could fit a full size tree in our apartment. Also, the only available wall space that does not have a heat register in front of it is the teeny wall between the bedroom and the bathroom. One thing that gets difficult about living in such a tiny space is the lack of floor space and storage space. Mostly the latter. But I digress. All that being said, we ended up getting a 4 ft artifical tree from Michaels craft store. I went out on Black Friday and scored this puppy for $20. Win!

_MG_5885Here it is without any ornaments on it. Womp Womp.

_MG_5916And here it is almost complete. We decided to go with bright, colorful bulbs. Blue, green, and magenta. I think it livens in up, don’t you?

mini treeUnfortunately, due to space issues (as usual) we don’t have any other holiday decor besides the white tree branchces shown in the previous post.  Sadly, we don’t have a tree topper or a tree skirt because we haven’t found one that we absolutely love yet. I really believe we should spend money on something that we will love and that we will continue to use from year to year instead of spending money on something that we kind of like and might never use again.

What kinds of holiday traditions and decor do you have around your home? We’d love to hear from you!

Bringing the outdoors in

One of the easiest (and least expensive) ways to bring the outdoors inside is with tree branches. I love the way they look in a vase or planter and you can leave them natural or you can paint them any color. If you don’t have room for a Christmas tree or if you are looking for an alternative to a Christmas tree and just want some holiday decoration in your home, you can decorate tree branches.

Minus the drying time, this project  took about 20-30 mins to complete. First, find some branches that are aesthetically pleasing to you. Then, in a well ventilated area, grab some spray paint and paint away! After they are done drying (I gave mine a couple of days because of the cold weather), put them in a glass vase or other decorative container of some sort (I used a 99 cent vase that I got from Savers).

tree

 

Then, I used some red bulbs we had around the apartment to decorate the branches. Here’s the final result:

decotree

 

What do you guys think? What other holiday decorations do you put up around your home?

Recyclebank

As I was eating my Kashi cereal the other morning, I noticed on the side of the box that I could earn 50 points for recycling my cereal box at Recyclebank. This instantly had me intrigued. I checked out the website and I am in love. You can earn points for recycling, taking greener actions, pledging to do things, taking quizzes, reading articles, etc. This is something that has always been important to me, so it’s nice to be able to share this with other people. Someday when Josh and I get a house I definately want to take actions that impact the environment less. For example, I’d love to get a compost bin or use energy star appliances. Unfortunately, because we live in an apartment and we rent, we are unable to control most of our major appliances, heating/cooling, hot water temperature, garbage disposal, etc. Which hurts my heart a little bit.

Needless to say, I ended up taking a quiz that measured my carbon footprint. I emit 10 tons of C02 a year. That number is under the national average which is 27 tons per year. Holy smokes thats a lot of C02! It is a little refreshing to know that my number is under the average but I know there are so many other things I could do in the future to reduce my footprint even more. Click here to take the quiz.

What are you doing to reduce your carbon footprint?

Things I Dig

I just wanted to share some of the items that I find home-worthy (or apartment worthy if you’re like me).

1.  Tripod Floor Lamp (image via Target)/ 2. Deco Accent Chair (image via Target)/ 3. Threshold Starburst Mirror (image via Target)/ 4. Rope Chain Chunky Jute Rug (image via West Elm)

So there you have it! I know some of these items are going to be making it on my Christmas list this year. Especially the mirror!

Foxy

Check out the newest addition to our family!

image via Target

Isn’t he lovely? It was swoon at first sight when I saw him in Target last week. He is part of the White Christmas Decor Collection by Threshold ( found here). Even though he is considered a Chrismas decoration, I like him so much I am going to keep him out all year long.  I just love how he is broken down into different planes and shapes.

Turkey Day

Or for us vegetarians, tofurkey day! Even though I am a day late posting this, its okay because I am still thankful for all the things I was thankful for yesterday. In my defense, I was visiting with family members, so pardon me for being away from ze computer. None the less, Thanksgiving is a day when people remember to be thankful for all that they really do have. Lucky for me, I certainly do have a lot to be thankful for this year. Here are some of the things that we came up with together:

each other

our cat

getting married

our apartment (even at it’s tiny, 400 sq ft layout)

spending time together

having a job

health

good family and friends

that george lucas does not own star wars anymore (this one is via Josh)

There are many more things, but the list could go on forever if we let it. And as Christmas grows nearer, I keep remembering what a big year it has been for us! Still,  no Thanksgiving post would be complete without a few photos of some delicious food.

Mom’s delicious Chocolate pie

I am also ashamed to say that I did treck out to Michaels craft store last night in order to get a Christmas tree for $20. This is our first Christmas together as a married couple, so check back to see how we decorate our tree!

What is everyone else thankful for this year?

Hanging some sentimental art

Anyone who knows me knows that I am a sucker for anything sentimental. I just can’t help it, but I’m known for being cheesy. That being said, at our wedding we had a station that housed a typewriter (that we scored at a garage sale for $5!) where our guests could type us advice, notes, or well wishes. It was one of my favorite parts of the wedding and it was totally Josh’s idea!

In the end, we were left with a long roll of paper full of notes that left us stumped with how to incorporate it into our home. I eventually decided to tear it into 3 pieces (as evenly as I possibly could, but since the spacing between each note was not uniform, it was kind of a challenge). I then was able to get 3 custom frames and plexi glass cut for them so we could hang them on the wall. And that is the journey we embarked upon tonight.

We finally decided it was time to add some interest to our bare walls and hang up the pieces of the notes from our wedding in a triptych like fashion. Behold:

First, Josh traced the frames onto newspaper so we could get the size of the frames and move them around on the wall without committing to anything (as in: putting permanent holes into the aparment walls).

Then we used tape to hang the pieces of newspaper so we could get an idea of where we wanted the frames to hang before nailing into the wall.

Once we got the spacing between the frames and height where we wanted it, we nailed into the wall (over the newspaper), tore the newspaper down, and hung the frames.

Voila!

I just loved rereading the cute, funny, and heartfelt notes that people left us on our wedding day. What sentimental items do you keep around the house?

Combat the Cold and Chills with a Cozy Care Package

In my years as a companion to Aubrey, I have learned many things about the different genders. I have found that there are many stereotypes of men and women that can easily be proven false. However, there is one universal truth that can not be debated in regards to our relationship…

My wife Aubrey has a constant body temperature of about 41 degrees.

It completely boggles my mind how a person can function everyday while never producing body heat. Don’t believe me? Think this is all exaggeration?

That’s her as I sit her and type this post in our living room. You can’t see it and I won’t disrupt her to show you, but under that comforter she is wearing a long sleeve sweater and a jacket. Under a blanket. In our home.

Current temperature: 68 Degrees

Point is, she is cold all the time. In the moments when we are together she can simply steal my warmth like some body heat vampire, but when she is away she has to fend for herself.

So I decided that she needed a way to survive the frigid world even when I am not there to put her icy feet on under the blankets.

Artist’s interpretation of Aub’s feet

So I made her a Cozy Care Package, a kit full of materials to warm her up when she is away from home.

MATERIALS:

  • Her Favorite Hot Chocolate Mix
  • A Pair of Fuzzy Gloves
  • Small Fabric Bag Filled with Rice
  • Wool Socks
  • Small Rubber Ball

Put all of these materials in a little bag and slip them in to her purse. All she needs to do is put on the gloves and wool socks, heat up the hot chocolate and rice bag (1 minute in the microwave then hold in hands), and bounce her foot on the rubber ball as she works at her desk. In no time she will be much warmer and happier until she is home again and ready to press that frozen nose against my neck.