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Ghost Garland

I don’t know what’s going on with me, but it’s like I got bit by the Pinterest bug or something – I all of a sudden am fine with the idea of cooking (what??) and I had the extreme urge to craft the other day and make homemade Halloween decorations out of found items.

It was kind of weird.

But, I had to share this random but kind of adorable (to me) thing I did – my little ghost garland!

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So easy, if you are looking for a quick way to get in the Halloween spirit this weekend.

This what I had laying around:

  • a Sharpie
  • a bunch of white gift wrap tissue paper (I feel guilty throwing it away so I save it? #hoarder)
  • a stapler
  • twine (I don’t know why)

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The twine is very fally-y, don’t you think? I think I ordered it on Amazon (still don’t know why) and I think I will also tie it around vases and such to make the place even more fall-like.

So, as you can probably see, the process is pretty simple. I just took a corner of tissue paper, rolled it on itself into a little ball the size of a tiny ghost head, kinda pinched, cut it so it had a little ghost skirt, grabbed the part of the twine I wanted it to hang on, and stapled. Add three sharpied circles, and you’re on to the next. It took me no time, and was a fun activity to do while watching Buffy. How in the Halloween spirit am I?

You can kind of fold and manipulate the tissue paper to hide the staple, or you can just say fuck it it’s a DIY ghost, I don’t care if they see a frickin staple, cuz I’m awesome and made this myself because I have so much Halloween cheer to share.

Look how cute they are!

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Anthony’s mom got us that cute string of jack-o-lantern lights a few years back. :)

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They’re making me pretty happy right now, along with the gingerbread wax melts Anthony’s mom sent us for our good-smelly bathroom light/wax melter thing (making our place smell like fall amazingness), and a centerpiece of orange and yellow roses Anthony brought home from an event he worked at the other night. I shall put twine on it and have the most festive apartment ever!

 

What festive fall things do you got goin on? Any DIYs we can all do while watching tv?

 

 

 

Mélange à trois: How do I keep my house clean?

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I have a really inconsistent work schedule, and recently my house has become a complete disaster. I have looked at chore checklists on Pinterest and they all look so intense. I can’t figure out how to fit in some cleaning time with down time, and keep it consistent when my life isn’t consistent! Any ideas for keeping my place livable with a crazy schedule?

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Um, yeah. As I talked about last week, getting shit done is on my radar lately – it’s so hard to find a consistent schedule to fit everything in. But I work full time, 9-5 – I can’t imagine trying to get a routine down when you don’t know when you are going to be working next week.

So I went to our old friend, Emily! She used to be an editor here at MM, and she is still my BFF so I get to make her help us whenever I want. She also works part time and has a nontraditional schedule – but luckily, she has found something that has worked great for her for a few months now.

She made a chore list, like the intense ones you see on Pinterest, but she made one for herself with her life in mind and made it easy and flexible. Check her’s out (Cooper is her dog :)):

Emily’s Weekly Chores

Monday:
  • Grocery shopping
  • Clean out fridge
  • Water plants

Tuesday:

  • Laundry
  • Clean bathroom

Wednesday:

  • Clean glass
  • Dust

Thursday:

  • Vacuum
  • Clean floors
  • Brush Cooper
  • Brush Cooper’s teeth

Everyday:

  • kitchen must be completely clean before going to bed
  • bathroom counter wiped down
  • clothes put away
  • 5 minute clean up to put misc stuff away

 

Some days it’s more than one chore, but those are either my day off or super short tasks that only take a few minutes. Almost everyday is about 1/2 an hour of time (except for Mondays and Thursdays which are my off days). Also I don’t do anything on the weekends other than bigger projects, which is nice to feel like I have weekends off.

I always thought making a schedule for cleaning sounded so stupid, but when I made a simple one of my own I loved it. The nice thing about it is that I didn’t realize how long it had been since I had cleaned something. So for example I would be like “Gawd our floors are so grossss, I just did these!!” And my husband would be like “Yeah… I think we did them like a month ago…” So it’s nice to know how often I do things, and not be guessing.

Also, in a way it calms down the perfectionist in me, because if I’m cleaning the bathroom one day but I’m like eww, the floors are gross, I’ll just tell myself they’re getting done tomorrow and I can wait that long. And sometimes it’ll be the day to do something and I won’t need to clean it… So either I’ll give myself the day off or try to find something else small to do…but usually I take the day off.

 

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I was inspired, so I made one too! I have some other aspects of my schedule in there too – everything is (theoretically) done after work.

Steph’s Weekly Chores

Monday
  • Gym
  • Dust
  • Dishes, wipe down counters in kitchen
  • Boil eggs for breakfast for the week
  • Water plants
Tuesday
  • Blog
  • Clean out fridge
  • Grocery shopping
Wednesday
  • Gym
  • Dishes, wipe down counters in kitchen
  • Clean bathroom
Thursday
Friday
  • Gym
  • Windows or floors (or can do on Saturday/Sunday)

So. Emily has been doing this successfully for a couple of months now, so I have hope – but I am just starting out. I think it will help when Anthony is done working on his PhD recital (!!) so he can get on board with me and help keep us on track.

The thing that I took away from all this is to be realistic, tailor it to your real life, and to change it when necessary. Feel it out, shift things around… the point is to find something that is manageable and doesn’t feel like torture. It’s all about just doing less more often so you’re not taking an entire Saturday to clean your whole disgusting place.

 

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I hope that helps! What do you all think? Do you have a routine or do you just clean when needed?

 

 

 

Holiday Hacks

Happy Friday! And happy almost Christmas. Don’t freak out, we still have time. But it’s coming!

I love Christmas. But I’m a little stressed. I ideally would have my shopping done by now and I’m only partly there. I’m feeling some pressure mostly because I need to give some gifts before we leave for Phoenix to stay for 2 weeks with Anthony’s family (my work has an office close by so I get to stay longer!). So my timeline is a little weird.

To help others who may be feeling some procrastination pressure, I have some fun AND cheap AND easy DIY gifts and ideas for you…

1. Check out this script pillow DIY project I did last year.

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I got the idea from a book.

HAHA of course I didn’t. Only Pinterest exists.

You can use the lyrics of the song a couple danced to at their wedding, your BFF’s favorite T Swift tune, whatever. It’s fun and original and sentimental. Go for it.

2. Make some cute, cheap adorable ornaments!

Go to Beverly’s or Michael’s or whatever, and they most likely have an aisle with tons of blank ornaments. Some are wood, some glass, some plastic… I personally love the plastic round ones. They won’t break but they’re clear and look so pretty on the tree.

Grab some metallic sharpies while you’re there. Next, text some friends and grab some wine on your way home. Put Mariah Carey Christmas on. Drink a glass of wine. Take out your pens and make some magic on some awesome homemade ornaments.

Here’s mine from last year:

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We don’t have kids so anything is fair game, right?

Make more appropriate ones and give them as gifts, or keep them for yourself!

3. Wrap your gifts with what you already have in your kitchen!

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Check out my post from last year where I wrapped my gifts with paper grocery bags – easy, fun, and will make you feel like a better person since your’re recycling. Plus you can use the metallic sharpies you already have from the fun drunken-ornament-making night!

Screw buying wrapping paper and those fancy tags and all that. If you want to get super fancy, grab some twine and a few little branches off the tree and tie them on there. You’ll look so sophisticated and minimalist.

4. To keep track of all your gift ideas for each person, use Pinterest!

I use Pinterest for everything. But I swear this was super helpful. Yunno when it’s like, late November and you see something on Amazon that might be a good gift for like your cousin, but you’re not gonna buy it right now (it’s still November and you still have a lot of procrastination ahead of you), but you don’t want to forget? Because you know when it’s December 20th and you’re like DAMMIT I still need something for my cousin, you’re gonna draw a blank?

Anyway, use Pinterest for that scenario. All you gotta do is make a board and make sure it’s private (click on Edit Board and turn Secret to On). Then you can pin gift ideas without anyone who follows you on Pinterest seeing any of it.

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Keep it organized by putting the person’s name in the description of each pin. Now you have a full list of ideas (that you could in theory start on early in the year), right at your fingertips. Plus they link back to the site where you found them so you can buy them right away. Boom.

 

What are your favorite holiday hacks?

Stay warm and festive everyone!

 

 

Mélange à trois: What do I do with this huge blank wall?

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We have this huge blank wall in our house that we need to decorate. But a big piece of art is super expensive, and I don’t have the time or energy for a big DIY project. What’s an easy decor fix for a big blank space?

 

We had the same issue – one blank wall in our bedroom was keeping it looking bare and not styled, and it was driving me crazy – but we already had a gallery wall on the opposite side of the room, so we needed an all-in-one piece that made a statement, but that we loved.

Here are a few ideas, including what we decided on for our place:

1. Shower curtain art.

I thought this was a really cool idea. It’s not the cheapest, and it does involve some DIYing – but you’ll end up with a really cool conversation piece that looks expensive, big, and unique.

I got the idea from a friend, but a step-by-step guide can be found here. Here’s an example of what it looks like when it’s finished:

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Basically you make a frame and staple gun the shit out of it and voila! You have a cheaper version of a nice big statement art piece.

Here are some awesome shower curtains that I think would be great for an art piece:

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2. Tapestry

I also looked at a ton of tapestries on Etsy that were beautiful – and no DIY skills needed! It gives that same impact without the work.

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And finally, the cheapest option and the one we chose…

 

3. Mirrors

It was so hard to agree on any of the big art pieces, and we knew that if it was going to be that big, we needed to both love it to death. So after so long of not being able to decide, I just started scouring my Pinterest boards and showing Anthony different options. Luckily, we both agreed on the idea in this pin:

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To be honest, I wasn’t particularly stoked – I just wanted it done. But once we got to K-Mart and realized these full-length mirrors were less than $10 each, I was sold. We got three, used velcro hanging strips which was so easy, and we were done.

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Once they were up, we were obsessed. It makes the room feel bigger – but more importantly, it makes it feel so luxurious for some reason! Like a hotel – in a good way.

FullSizeRender (43) FullSizeRender (41) I’m so glad they had white ones – and they even had a little molding goin on! I love how it looks, and it makes the room complete. That big wall seemed like such a chore, but it was one of the easiest projects we’ve ever done.

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Bonus: it reflects light (like the pretty glow from our marquee letters!) and you can watch tv in the reflection.

It looks so much better in person. Want to come over?

 

What favorite projects have you done in your place?

 

{Have a question you want to chew on with us? Email missmelangeblog@gmail.com!}

 

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