Living Room Makeover

June 8, 2018

This living room makeover is the second post in a mini blog series showcasing the progress we are making with updating each room of our little San Diego home!

If you missed it, check out our half bathroom makeover – It’s amazing how much of an impact a fresh coat of paint can have on a space (new countertops definitely help as well).

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DIY Foaming Hand Soap

May 11, 2018

DIY Foaming Hand Soap - made with all natural ingredients

Creating your own DIY foaming hand soap might be one of the easiest ways to save money (and prevent excess waste!) in your home.

In anticipation of the many diaper changes my husband and I are about to take on (due date is only about 4 weeks away now!), plus considering the health concerns surrounding over-use of antibacterial hand soaps, we have started re-filling the foaming hand soap bottles we already had with these eco-friendly ingredients:

DIY Foaming Hand Soap Ingredients

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How to Clean a Mattress

April 27, 2018

How to clean a mattress and remove stains with baking soda, a vacuum, and hydrogen peroxide

Learning how to clean a mattress (like learning how to wash pillows) is one of those household tasks that isn’t always top of mind. If you think about it, you spend about ⅓ of your life laying on your mattress so making sure you take good care of it is important. Luckily, mattress cleaning and maintenance isn’t very difficult – all you need is baking soda, a vacuum, and hydrogen peroxide to clean, deodorize, and treat stains!

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Organize Your Finances with This Budget Template

April 12, 2018

Budget Template - organize your finances, track your investments, monitor your debt, and reach your financial goals!

Here we are, tax time again! I’m not sure if anyone else can relate, but each year as T and I organize our tax documents and review our spending from the previous year, it inspires me to re-evaluate our spending habits going forward and get us back on an organized budgeting system.

This time last year I introduced a slightly different (and perhaps slightly less advanced) Budget Document created via Google Spreadsheet that we had been using successfully for a number of months. In response, I received a number of customization how-to requests and questions about how to account for debt (an area where the old budget template fell a little short).

The good news is – I listened to those questions and requests and developed an updated 2018 version of that Budget Template! I recorded a brand new tutorial video that not only walks you through how to access the Google Spreadsheet template, but shows you how it works, how to customize, and an added option to account for investments/debt/net worth.

This spreadsheet will track your monthly income/expenses, compile those items into categories and subcategories, allow you to view your spending in comparison to the previous month, track your investments and any debt you might be paying off (mortgage, student loans, credit card, etc.), and view all of this information on a high-level summary tab.

If you’re interested in getting a copy for yourself, sign up with your email below. By doing so you will also start receiving my weekly newsletter (which you can of course unsubscribe from at ANY time if it isn’t something you’re into). Weekly newsletters include behind the scenes anecdotes, quick tips for living a cleaner/greener/more organized lifestyle, and links to my most recent blog posts.

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Small Bathroom Makeover

March 29, 2018

Small bathroom makeover - before and after sources

Last year, my husband and I moved to San Diego and purchased a new home. During our search, my top priorities were good light, privacy, and a backyard of some kind so we could garden (and of course have a safe place for future kiddos to play).

When I first saw our (now) home, I came close to removing it from our list of considerations because it felt really dark! There was terrible mismatched flooring and a muddy wall color that was not doing the space any favors. Let’s just say, things didn’t look very “clean.”

Luckily, I ended up changing my mind – our offer was accepted and we got a great deal on the home. Because we got a good deal, we were able to afford some simple renovations before moving in!

The first project was our small bathroom makeover.  Continue Reading…

Buy and Sell on Facebook – How I Am Using Facebook Marketplace to Prepare for Baby

March 22, 2018

Buy and Sell on Facebook - How I Am Using Facebook Marketplace to Prepare for Baby

I think it might be safe to say at this point that I am no longer loyal to Craigslist: I now love to buy and sell on Facebook Marketplace.

My love for second-hand is no secret at this point. I like that buying and selling second-hand is a far more affordable, environmentally friendly and sustainable option. I’ve posted tips for buying thrifted and second-hand clothes, and I even challenged myself to a full year in 2017 of “no new clothes” for these reasons and more.

Since publishing some of those posts, my husband and I moved, bought a house, and got pregnant (due in less than 3 months from now – insane!)… needless to say, while I have been trying my best to keep our shopping lists as “minimal” as possible, babies (and offices and guest bedrooms…) require “stuff.” Instead of buying everything brand new, I have turned to second-hand marketplaces as often as possible – most notably, Facebook Marketplace.

Let me tell you why. Continue Reading…

Natural DIY Home Cleaning Supplies Kit

March 14, 2018

Natural DIY cleaning supplies kit

If you have a hard time motivating yourself (or others in your home) to regularly clean spaces like your kitchen or bathrooms, then this DIY cleaning supplies kit (filled with effective cleaners made from all-natural ingredients!) is exactly what you need.

I store my cleaning supplies kit underneath our kitchen sink so it’s easily accessible for daily/weekly kitchen cleaning tasks (counters, sink, cabinet handles, fridge handles, appliance fronts, etc.). Then once a week or so, I grab the cleaning supplies kit and take it with me from bathroom to bathroom for a quick wipe-down (counters, toilets, sinks, mirrors, showers, etc.). Continue Reading…

Air Purifying Plants

March 8, 2018

Air Purifying PlantsDo you ever wonder about just how clean the air you’re breathing in your home truly is? Pollutants that negatively impact the indoor air quality of your home can stem from many sources: paint, flooring, furniture, home cleaning products, and more.

What is scary is that some of these toxins that commonly off-gas in the home have been classified as known human carcinogens (e.g. benzene, formaldehyde, and trichloroethylene).

Did you recently purchase new furniture? Did you recently paint in your home? Do you regularly dry clean your clothes? Do you ever use cleaning products made from harsh chemicals?

If so, then it’s likely that the air quality in your home has suffered as a consequence. Luckily, there is a simple, natural, aesthetically pleasing, and cost-effective way to reduce and even eliminate harmful airborne toxins – decorating with air purifying plants. Continue Reading…

Low VOC Paint – Do You Need it?

March 1, 2018


Low VOC paint - why you need it!

Prior to moving into our new home last year, we chose to do some basic renovations – new floors, new bathroom countertops, a new master bathroom vanity, new light fixtures, and of course new paint.

While I had the best intentions to keep eco-friendliness and health safety in mind when making renovation decisions, when it came to paint I simply chose a color and moved on. I didn’t even think twice about researching paint types/brands/etc.

…that is until I learned about VOCs. Continue Reading…

What I Learned from Buying Only Second Hand Clothes for One Year

February 23, 2018

I only bought second hand clothes for one year...

Last year I challenged myself to refrain from purchasing any new clothes.

Yep. 12 months – no new clothes… but that didn’t mean I wasn’t still shopping, I simply restricted myself to shopping for only thrifted or second hand clothes instead. Why, do you ask? Check out my post from last year about why I said no to new clothes in 2017 (hint: I was driven mainly by a desire to positively impact the environment and eliminate my over-consumption of hard-to-recycle items – especially from “fast fashion” retailers).

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