Young and Crafty Sisters: December 2013

Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Changes to Young and Crafty

 

Did that grab your attention? Not to worry, they are good changes that I am SUPER excited about. My sister Brittany and I have decided to blog together. Eeek! She has done a few guest posts here on Young and Crafty. One of my most popular posts is this t-shirt scarf that she made.

 

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(Brittany on the left, Hannah on the right)

 

So what does this mean for you guys? Well you will notice a few changes around here. The blog is getting a makeover and name change. Since I already have a somewhat of a following, we decided that this would be the best way to go. Hopefully you will also see more posts. I’ve been dealing with a lot of personal things lately so crafting has gone to the wayside. She is super crafty also and will have so much fun stuff to share.

 

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(Brittany on the left, Hannah on the right)

 

I bet you’re guessing what the new name will be. Without further ado it will be

Young and Crafty Sisters.

 

Brittany will be introducing herself to you guys this week. I’m so excited for you to meet her. I hope that you will all continue to follow us on this fun journey!

Monday, December 30, 2013

Shabby Apple Lace Skirt

 

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When Shabby Apple, the “go to” place for vintage clothing, asked if I wanted to try a piece of their clothing out, of course I jumped at the chance! I browsed through all of their beautiful clothing and then I came across this skirt. The Down the Aisle Skirt is feminine and fun.

 

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This skirt is perfect to wear to a dressy occasion or even work.

 

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This skirt fits like a glove. The lining is soft and silky. This is a great quality piece for your closet.

 

Shabby Apple has so much to offer. Their clothes are modest but fun.

 

Here is a sampling of some other chic finds at Shabby Apple:

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So next time you have a fancy occasion or just want a new fun piece for your closet, be sure to check out Shabby Apple for vintage clothing that is unique, modest, and fun!

 

You can also find them on Instagram HERE and Facebook HERE to stay up to date with news.

Friday, December 27, 2013

7 Ways to Spend Your Money Wiser

It’s Easier Than You Think: 7 Ways to Spend Your Money Wiser

It has been said that money makes the world go ‘round, and there really is a lot of truth to that statement. Unfortunately, while money is one of life’s necessary evils, it is something that many people find very difficult to hold onto. The rising cost of, well, everything, is making it more and more difficult to successfully put money away.

If there is a big ticket item that you want to purchase, you’d like to save up for a rainy day, or investing in your future in the form of retirement is something you’ve always hoped to do, life may be getting in your way, making it more difficult than you thought to cut back on your expenses and save. 

Certainly, saving money may seem like a task that is simply unachievable, but with some dedication and effort, it can be done and is one of the most rewarding things you’ll ever do. Here is a look at some simple money saving suggestions that you can start abiding by today!

 


Image Courtesy of Shutterstock

Use Coupons

You’ve likely seen programs on television that show everyday people saving boatloads of money through the simple act of clipping coupons. Perhaps you’ve even tried it yourself! However, there is an art to the process and if done incorrectly, you may end up spending more than you’re saving.

Simply clipping coupons for anything won’t work. If your approach is to use coupons for anything and everything, just because they’re available, then it’s time to reconsider your method. Instead, take your time and peruse the newspapers and magazines for coupons that you’ll actually use. Then, stock up on those items. As you coupon more often, you will become more familiar with what works best for you and which items you can save most on.

Create a Budget

Instead of simply buying whatever you want when you want it, or need it, try budgeting your money. Without a budget, many people live paycheck to paycheck, which often results in debt.


Image Courtesy of Shutterstock

To make it easy to adjust to a budget, there are tons of handy apps out there that you can download right to your mobile device, allowing you to create and stay on a budget. MoneyBook and Mint are two fantastic budgeting apps.

Make a Shopping List

Have you ever gone to the grocery store without a plan, and just grabbed whatever looked good off the shelves? This probably resulted in needing to return later in the week, because you didn’t get everything you needed. Unfortunately, repeating this cycle results in a lot of money lost - all because of silly groceries!

A simple way to avoid this is by making a list before heading to the grocery store. Your list will serve as a guide for shopping and helps you avoid repeated trips. Before the start of a new week, sit down and plan your meals and base your list off of that. After that, the key is to stick to that list!

Brown Bag It

It may be tempting to buy your lunch at work or while you are out, but doing so on a regular basis costs you a pretty penny.

 Instead of buying lunch out, make your own lunch at home and bring it with you. Creative containers make a homemade lunch seem more fun and keep you inspired each day. Not only will you save money, but you’ll eat healthier, too.

Check Expiration Dates

This little tip is something that so many people fail to do, resulting in a lot of extra money spent.  When you are shopping for perishable items, always check the expiration dates. Things like milk, bread, eggs, and yogurt all expire relatively quickly. If you don’t check the dates, you could end up bringing home something that expires before you even use it.

A simple way around this is to pull perishable items from the back of the shelf and place them in plain site. The more you see something, the more likely you are to actually use it.

Turn off the Lights

Something as simple as turning off the lights ultimately saves you a great deal of money. Make an effort to do so whenever you leave a room, or when you aren’t home. Sure, it may take a few days to get into the habit of shutting off the lights, but you’ll thank yourself later upon receiving your utility bill.

Ditch the Car

As convenient as a car is, it is also a big source of sucking up your finances. From the monthly payments to the rising cost of gas and the potential necessity of paying for parking - it all adds up. Whenever possible, leave the car at home and instead, rely on mass transit, riding a bike or even walking. Another way to save when you do need to use your car, such as on the commute to work, is to carpool.

Turn Down the Heat

Winter strikes, temperatures drop, and thermostats slowly rise. However, there are ways to get around a high heating bill due to a need for a warm house. Try lowering your thermostat a few degrees lower than you normally would and throw on a sweater and thick socks. And isn’t winter the best time to cozy up under warm blankets? 

Buy Generic Products

Name brand products are nice, but most times, it’s more likely that you are paying for the name, not the quality. When it comes to items like over-the-counter medications, soaps, and cleaning supplies, there really isn’t any difference between the generic and the name brand – except the price tag. Choose generic and you’ll save a bundle.

Now that Christmas is over, tight finances are a common problem and what better time to begin a habit of spending money wisely than in the New Year? Try putting these tips into practice and you could end up saving yourself a pretty penny. The best thing is that these money saving suggestions are so easy to do and don’t require a huge investment or change in your lifestyle. By saving now, you can plan for a more secure future.



Naomi Shaw is a freelance writer in Southern California. With a family of three, she is always on the lookout for ways to save money and finds that these tips have helped her immensely over the years.


















Thursday, December 26, 2013

Best of 2013

 

It’s so hard to believe that another year has flown by. Sometimes I forget what I created throughout the year. So let’s take a look at the top 10 posts of 2013 based on pageviews! We are counting down to the number one spot.

 

Top 10 of 2013

 

10. I dabbled in jewelry making this year. It’s fun but hard!

 

 Earrings

 

9. I still wear this easy lace back t-shirt all the time.

 

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8. I love a deco mesh wreath. This one definitely fits the bill for fall.

 

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7. This one was a surprise on the list. A simple black dresser redo.

 

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6. I’m not a fantastic sewer so if you haven’t tried this infinity scarf yet you totally should!

 

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5. Use those old scraps and make a scrap fabric heart wreath.

 

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4. At the beginning of 2013 I decided to go on a juice cleanse. It was tough!

 

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3. This bathroom renovation was one of my favorites. I just love that shower curtain.

 

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2. Cupcake stand out of stove burner covers. Can’t get any easier.

 

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1. This simple stud earring holder was my most popular post of 2013. I still love it for my studs!

 

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Can’t wait to see what 2014 holds!

 

Linking Up To These Parties: Monday- Skip to my Lou Craft-O-Maniac Making the World Cuter C.R.A.F.T. The Girl Creative Tuesday- Sugar Bee Crafts A Diamond in the Stuff Home Stories A to Z Today's Creative Blog Funky Polkadot Giraffe Wednesday-  Trendy TreehouseFireflies & Jellybeans Thursday- Somewhat Simple House of Hepworths Friday-Fingerprints on the Fridge Tatertots and Jello Chic on a Shoestring Decorating  Sunday- Under the Table and Dreaming I Heart Nap Time

Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Woodsy Wreath #fabulouslyfestive

 

Woodsy Wreath

 

It’s been a while since I’ve created anything. I won’t bore you with excuses of why I haven’t been posting. I would rather just share this gorgeous wreath with you!

 

I partnered with JoAnn’s to create something #fabulouslyfestive for Christmas. When I walked into JoAnn’s I had absolutely no idea what I was going to make. I need another wreath about like I need a hole in the head but when I saw this lumberjack/woodsy ribbon, that was all she wrote.

 

Woodsy Wreath 1

 

I picked up these supplies. A grapevine wreath form, Two different types of pine needle branches that had pine cones and berries on them, jingle bells, and the ribbon that started it all.

 

Woodsy Wreath 2

 

I started by clipping all of the needles off. I kept the berries and pinecones attached to the greenery.

 

Woodsy Wreath 3

 

Then take your wreath and just start sticking the needles in the wreath until you can’t see the grapevine anymore. I hot glued in a few pieces but for the most part the needles are just stuck in the grapevine.

 

Woodsy Wreath 4

 

I then made a bow and strung my jingle bells from some twine and hung them from the middle.

 

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And that’s all there is to it. I just love, love, love the woodsy look for Christmas decorations. I’m drawn to that more than I am the glitz!

 

Are you looking for inspiration? Be sure to check out the JoAnn’s catalog HERE. Also check out how to Celebrate the Season!

 

As always, here is a coupon so you can go grab some supplies to create something!

 

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Monday, December 9, 2013

Holiday To-Go

This is a Sponsored post written by me on behalf of Piccadilly Restaurants for SocialSpark. All opinions are 100% mine.

On my dad’s side of the family we have a few traditions for Christmas. One of my favorites is that we do not do the traditional turkey and dressing dinner. Instead, my dad cooks a huge pot of gumbo and my aunt usually cooks chili. They figured everyone was sick to death of turkey and dressing so why not switch it up! My dad makes the most phenomenal gumbo so that doesn’t hurt either.

Another tradition is that we always have a candy cane sharpening contest. We each have 10 minutes to see who can get their candy cane the sharpest. Of course, there are tons of jokes about his being the uncles favorite 10 minutes because there is silence!

My very favorite tradition is that for my Mamaw and Papaws gift we find a family in need and everyone puts in however much money they want and we anonymously give it to the family. Each year my mom writes a letter and we read it to them and the family is a surprise to them. It is such a special way to give to a family.

All that being said, sometimes it can be hassle to prepare all the food for an entire family! I don’t know about you, but I don’t love to cook. I love to eat. That’s where Piccadilly Restaurants comes in. They offer Holiday Feasts To-Go for Christmas. You get a choice of turkey or ham and all the trimmings. The feast serves 10-14 guests and is $54.99. Don’t have that many in your family? Try the Junior Holiday Feast for 4-6 people and is $29.99 for turkey and $25.99 for ham. Your order for Holiday To-Go feast must be placed at least 36 hours in advance of the pickup date. The feasts are fully cooked, refrigerated and ready to heat.  

Never even heard of Piccadilly? Well they opened in 1932 in Baton Rouge, LA. 12 years later a budding restaurateur, T.H. Hamilton took the reins with hopes of growing the business. Today, there are more than 60 restaurants and 80 food service locations all across the southeast.

So if you are pressed for time, let Piccadilly do the cooking so you can enjoy being with your family. Also, be sure to check out the gift cards. For every $50 spent on gift cards through Dec. 31, a $10 savings card will be issued which can be used towards a Piccadilly purchase from Jan 1-Jan 31 2014 at participating restaurants.  Be sure to like Piccadilly Restaurants on Facebook and follow @EatPiccadilly on Twitter to get updates! 

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