5 Ways to “Fall Up” Your Home

Happy Fall-riday!! I hope you live in a spot where the air is cooling off and you’re able to really get into the spirit of the season.

We’re finally dipping into the 60s here in Northwest Arkansas. So this weekend, I plan to do the seasonal clothes swap, where I put my summer dresses and blouses away and pull out the sweaters and boots.

I also plan to spruce up the house with some fall flair. I’ve found that it doesn’t have to take a lot of effort to transition your home into a warm and cozy spot.

Focus on these five things to seasonalize your space in a snap!

{ONE} The Entryway

The front door and entryway help set the tone for your home. So this is a great place to showcase seasonal decorations, and even messages. Look at this cute chalkboard that has been decked out with leaves and berries. I could see this updated with holly in the winter and even daisies in the spring/summer >>

Here’s a fun twist. This wreath includes cotton bolls tucked among the greens. I found some real cotton stems on this site if you’re interested in making something like this for yourself. You can also buy this wreath online >>

If you want to go for simplicity, here’s a wreath made with corn husks. Doesn’t it remind you of a white sunflower? You could hot glue strips of corn husks (from a craft store) onto a foam wreath to make this lovely display. And you can make homemade tamales with any left over husks. Lol >>

This would be another DIY project. It’s a repurposed frame with fall flowers and greenery glued to the edges. I also love the personalization with the initial in the center. >>

{TWO} Framed Artwork & Photos

You can easily freshen up your walls with signs of fall, like colorful leaves that have been framed >>

How pretty is this? I love the idea of having a large chalkboard as the focal point in a room. That way you can sketch out a new message each season >>

Find little nooks in your home, like a bookshelf or side table to display a framed seasonal message. This is simply a piece of burlap that has been colored with a Sharpie >>

If you have a gallery wall in your home, swap out a few photos or objects for one of these cool fall prints >>

{THREE} Seasonal Centerpieces

Flowers and even gourds are a great way to bring the fall season indoors. Here’s a cornucopia-like basket that’s overflowing with silk greens and fabric pumpkins, so it will easily last through Thanksgiving >>

Fill the middle of your dining room table or even coffee table with a planter of herbs and small pumpkins. If you can’t find mini white pumpkins, you can buy orange ones and spray paint them white – or even silver or gold >>

If you can’t tell, I love white pumpkins!! Here’s a pretty centerpiece that uses one as a vase. Just hollow out the inside, fill it with oasis floral foam and then you can insert flowers of your choice. This has tulips with seeded eucalyptus. I don’t usually think of tulips this time of year, so that makes this arrangement a tad unique >>

For another pumpkin-turned-vase idea, these beauties have succulents planted inside >>

And speaking of succulents, I think they’re great for fall (and even winter). They add life to your decor, come in beautiful colors and don’t require much sun or water. This makes them happy additions to any home. This pretty mix is planted inside of a wooden box >>

{FOUR} Pillows & Throws

As soon as the temperatures drop, I love making cozy spots throughout the house with blankets and soft pillows. “Sweater” pillows, like the one below, are my favorites to snuggle with while reading a book, sitting next to the fire with a hot cup of apple cider…pardon me while I daydeam for a minute.

It’s also fun to use decorative pillows to really make the house feel “in season” >>

Here’s a fun assortment of pillows that would be darling on a couch. I even like that plaid throw tucked in the left corner >>

If you’re feeling like an easy DIY project, here’s a pillow you can make! >>

Here are a few more plaid throws that I love. These are from Pottery Barn. You may remember I mentioned them in a previous post? Well, they’re still on sale!!

PS. I ended up buying the second one down (neutral) >>

{FIVE} Soaps & Candles

For the final touches, I plan to pick up some of these yummy candles from Bath & Body Works. They have such great fragrances each season. I’m a little more partial to Cranberry Woods than the Pumpkin Pecan Waffles. The pumpkin-scents are a little too sweet or pumpkiny for me.

Here are a few stars in this season’s line up >>

I like having seasonal soaps in all of our bathrooms. So I plan to check out these interesting choices this weekend. Have you shopped any of these? If so, what’s your favorite?! >>

That’s a wrap, my friends. Have a beautiful weekend. How are you celebrating fall, so far?

-Kate

PS. I’m continuing my series of posts on how to clean and organize a few special places in our homes. Yesterday I started with the heart of the home (the kitchen). Join me this weekend for some laundry room ideas!

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How to Have an Easy-Clean Kitchen

This quote made me laugh. Mostly because it’s spot-on with how I feel about cleaning. I don’t mind organizing stuff, but cleaning is another story. I can procrastinate like a pro.

There are two times a year when I actually don’t mind cleaning: spring and early fall. And fall is probably ranked higher. Maybe it’s my way of nesting before the cold air arrives and our family huddles inside for the next few months?

Anyway, as I was feeling the (mostly unfamiliar) need to pull out my cute rubber gloves and start scrubbing, I decided to jot down a few of my easy-clean tips.

{You can buy them here}

Aren’t these adorable? You can buy them here.

This post will be the first in a series of how to quickly and easily clean a few special places in our homes. For starters, I’ll focus on the heart of the home.

For me, that’s the kitchen.

I found an article in Huffington Post recently that listed the five dirtiest places in the kitchen:

  1. Refrigerator drawers
  2. Dishrags
  3. Can opener
  4. Blender
  5. Countertops/sinks

I don’t know about you, but I was shocked by this list. Dishrags and sponges, yes. I get that. In fact, I don’t really use these. But refrigerator drawers?! Eww! These items will definitely be on my tip list.

First, the supplies

Think of these as ingredients for your easy-clean kitchen recipe.

  • Rubber gloves
  • Lysol wipes
  • Baking soda
  • Vinegar
  • Lemons
  • Spray bottle
  • Newspaper
  • Baby oil (optional)

Now, for the tips

{Dishwasher}

dishwasher-cleaner

This one is probably the easiest, so we’ll start here. Pour ½ cup of vinegar in the detergent cup and run the (empty) machine for a full cycle. Then move on to that dirty fridge. Lol!

{Refrigerator}

lysol-wipes

Toss any old food and wipe down the inside of the fridge – especially the meat and cheese drawer handles (just read that Huff Post article!) I really like Lysol wipes for this job so I know I’m truly disinfecting things.

Next, close the fridge, grab a fresh wipe and clean the outside handles.

{Can Opener}

can-opener

I have a handheld opener, so I’ll just drop it into the dishwasher. Otherwise, I’d wipe this down with Lysol, as well.

{Blender}

blender

Wipe down the entire base, including the buttons. I think the nastiest place is down inside the center – where the container goes. I’ll wipe that area the best.

{Counter and Stove Tops}

counter-spray

We have granite countertops, which is porous, so I use ½ cup baking soda with 2 cups of water in a spray bottle to clean and sanitize. I’ve heard equal parts of water and hydrogen peroxide also does the trick.

For my glass top stove, I’ll just clean it like my countertops with the baking soda/water spray.

{Oven}

oven-cleaner

Sometimes I’ll use the self-cleaning function, but I don’t always have time to babysit while it cooks. I feel weird having it on while I’m away. So…I’ll make a paste of baking soda and water to scrub the bottom of the oven.

To get the tougher “gunk,” I’ll add a few drops of vinegar to get it to fizz and loosen any debris.

{Microwave}

microwave-cleaner

The microwave is another “fix-it-and-forget-it” kind of chore. Fill a bowl with ½ cup water and ½ lemon (squeezed into the water). Microwave for 3 min. Let sit for 5 min for the steam to do its trick. Then open and wipe clean. Voila!

{Kitchen Sink}

sink-cleaner

While the microwave is doing its thing, I’ll take the other half of lemon and use it to scrub my sink.

First I’ll generously sprinkle baking soda around the sink. Then I’ll use the lemon like a scrubber. Let it sit for a few minutes before rinsing with fresh water.

{Trashcan}

trashcan

I can’t believe this didn’t make the top five list of dirtiest spots in a kitchen. Regardless, I’ll clean the exterior really well with a Lysol wipe.

After I take out the trash, I’ll line the bottom of the can with fresh newspaper and sprinkle some baking soda on top to absorb any odors. You know I can’t do weird smells. #gag

{Stainless Steel Surfaces}

stainless-steel-cleaner

If I’m not totally out of time or energy, I’ll put a few drops of baby oil on a cloth and wipe away all of the germy fingerprints.

If you want this list in a handy, dandy printout, you can download it here!

That’s all for now. Stop back tomorrow for five tips on sprucing up your house specifically for fall.

XoXo,

Kate

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Friday Wrap: A Few Good Things

fallelujahHello, friends! It’s not only Friday, but also the first official weekend of fall. Yay!!! I hope you have tons of exciting things on your plate.

We plan to celebrate my sweet husband’s birthday!! That means we’ll have a weekend filled with friends, family, football and plate loads of delicious food. No complaints on my end.

As I’ve been prepping for the festivities, I came across some fun things I wanted to share. Here’s my top five list:

{ONE} Easiest-Ever Pumpkin Spice & Chocolate Muffins

A coworker shared some of these delicious and ridiculously easy-to-make muffins. And now I’m sharing with you. Here’s how easy they are…

When I asked for the recipe, my friend laughed. She said it’s too easy to call a “recipe.” It’s literally a box of spice cake mix, a can of pumpkin and as many chocolate chips as you love. No extra water, eggs, oil, etc. Nada. Just three ingredients poured in a bowl, mixed around and scooped into muffin tins. You bake at 350 degrees for about 15 minutes, and then you have yourself some perfectly spiced pumpkin muffins.

I made a batch earlier in the week and they’re already gone! So I’m making more today for the birthday boy.

{TWO}  Play-Doh Cake Party

Muffins are good, but it’s not a proper party without cupcakes. Am I right?

My girls are obsessed with all things cupcake at the moment. I think it started when they discovered the TV show Cupcake Wars. This week I bought them this Play-Doh set so they can make cute (and sugar-free) treats for when we don’t have time to crack real eggs and fire up the oven.

They were super excited about this purchase and plan to make all kinds of goodies for their daddy bear’s birthday! I mean, look how cute. >>

playdoh-cake

{THREE} Truly Spiked & Sparkling

truly-spiked-and-sparkling

When we visited our friends in Kansas City recently, I was introduced to Truly. It’s an adult beverage that’s just like a flavored, sparkling water. Think of it as a LaCroix with a kick. It’s only 100 calories per can and 2 grams of carbs. So it fits into my Whole30ish diet. Lol!

Anyway, if you’re looking for a light and refreshing drink to sip on during parties or football games, you may want to give this a try. I like the grapefruit pomelo, but they have other flavors – like pomegranate and colima lime. I have stocked up on all three.

{FOUR} Aromatherapy Oils To Go

aromatherapy-roll-on

When I was stocking up on a few bathroom essentials at Walgreens, I stumbled upon these aromatherapy oils. They’re packaged in small bottles with a roll-on tip. So they’re easy to toss into your purse and use at a moment’s notice.

I bought two of them because at the time I wasn’t sure if I needed to chill out or buckle down and focus. What’s funny about this, and I didn’t realize it until just now, is that it sums up my personality to a tee. I’m actually a calm person, and when I’m involved in a project I’m super focused. I’ve heard I get this look on my face that says, “Don’t talk. I’m busy thinking.” Is that why I picked them? Did I somehow relate to them?!

{FIVE} Barre3 Class

barre3

Even with such a busy week, my friend, Julie, and I carved out some time for ourselves. #personalwin

We attended a Barre class!! I’ve never been to one and didn’t even know what to wear. I literally had to Google it. These showed up and I almost freaked. Good news is that this place was barefoot friendly.

Anyway, the class was pretty challenging. And by challenging, I mean hard. Really hard. I’ve never done so many sumo squats in my life. And I’ve given birth to three children. Within the first five minutes all of my muscles were on fire.

Our picture above is probably blurry because we were shaking and could barely hold our arms above our heads. Julie posted this video on Facebook to describe how we felt and looked after class >>

baby-fawn

Click to watch. Lol!

I’m sure we were a sight, but we didn’t care. We were just proud that we did it! And we might even go back.

That’s a wrap. Be sure to swing by next week. I’m doing another series. This time it’s about simple ways to clean and organize the most important spaces in your home, like your kitchen, bathrooms and laundry room.

For now, I wish you a beautiful weekend – and give a special shout out to my Sweet B for the best birthday, yet!

XoXoXo,

Kate

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10 Beautiful Quotes for Welcoming Fall

You’ve seen me profess my love of the fall season, so this should come to no surprise that I’m truly and officially excited for today. I can finally say, “Happy Fall!”

In fact, I found ten different ways to say it. Feel free to share any of these on Facebook, Instagram or wherever you want to spread seasonal cheer.

{via}

And finally, as I mentioned on my personal Facebook page…”Here’s to turning new leaves, opening more doors, and seeing the beauty in all colors.” #findingreasonwithintheseason 

My love to you all this fall!

Kate

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Friday Wrap: Feelin’ a Little Like Fall

As the days turn cool and crisp, my excitement for fall quickly builds. I want to bust open the windows and let the breeze fill and clean each room of the house. I also look forward to pulling out cozy blankets, baking recipes, and anything else that screams “fall.”

The official first day is next Thursday, so here are five ways we can gear up for a grand entrance into this fresh season.

{ONE} Seasonal Planters

I shared a post yesterday that went into more detail about fall planters. So be sure to check that out for lots of inspiration.

In the meantime, I think this might be my favorite (below). I have a pair of urns just like this in front of our house, so I want to try and pull this off. That purple fountain grass is gorgeous with the yellow mums and orange peppers. As we get closer to Halloween, I could stack some cute punkin’s around the base.

{TWO} Cozy Blankets

I’m a big fan of snuggle time. I’ll even make the house a tad colder in the summer just so I can wrap up in a blanket. Crazy, I know. Now that it’s actually getting chilly, I feel good about having them out on display.

Our mini Goldendoodle chewed through a few of my favorites when he was in full-on puppy stage, so I’m in the market for blankets. I love this plaid number from Pottery Barn. And it’s on sale?! Yes, please.

{THREE} Soul Food

I heard through the vine that Pecan Pumpkin Butter is back at Williams-Sonoma. Yay! That means it’s time to whip up a batch of warm pumpkin dessert squares.

Recipe:

1 Box Yellow Cake Mix
1 jar Muirhead Pecan Pumpkin Butter
1/4 cup Sugar
1 Tbsp Flour
3 Eggs
3/4 cup Butter
3 Tbsp Milk
1 tsp Cinnamon

Reserve 1 cup of the cake mix, set aside. Mix remaining cake mix with 1/2 cup melted butter and 1 egg. Press mixture lightly into the bottom of a 9×13″ pan. Mix 1 jar of Muirhead Pecan Pumpkin Butter with 2 large eggs and 3 tbsp of milk. Pour over cake mixture in pan.

Mix the reserved cake mix with 1 tbsp flour, 1/4 cup sugar, 1/4 cup of soft butter and 1 tsp cinnamon. Crumble over top of pumpkin layer. Bake 35-40 min. @ 350 degrees or until golden. Cool and serve.

{FOUR} Simmering Scents

As you may know, I’ve always had a “thing” for smells. Nothing makes our house feel more like fall than a big batch of simmering spices on the stove. Here’s my favorite combination. Mmm…

{FIVE} Fresh Colors

Every season Pantone Color Institute develops a palette that helps summarize the hottest colors worn during New York Fashion Week. And here are your beautiful, jewel-like colors for Fall 2015. >>

This year’s line up is heavy on blues. And beautiful, soft blues at that. Below shows you each color in more detail and what their exact number and names are in the Pantone Color system. (This is especially helpful if you’re a designer.) Have fun styling your outfits, accessories or even your house with these trendy hues.

color3color1 color2

That’s a wrap! Have a great weekend and let me know what you’re up to. How are you flirting with fall?

XoXoXo,

Kate

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Inspiration for Your Fall Garden

We’re inching closer and closer to fall, y’all. That makes my heart so happy. I love this time of year – especially in the garden. Earlier in the week I shared a few tips on getting our tools primed and ready, now it’s time to get some inspiration for what to plant!

Here’s a collection of ideas I’m thinking about. What’s on your fall planting list?

Culinary Herbs & Veggies

Some of the things I planted in the spring will carry over, like my tomatoes. Other things I have to plant fresh. For instance…

fresh lettuce

Fresh lettuce, anyone?!

One of my favorite things to plant in cooler weather is lettuce. So many varieties grow really well in the fall – and they’re quick to sprout straight from a packet of seeds! Instant gratification. Rosie our rabbit kinda loves it, too.

Parsley

Remember that one time I expressed my love for this underrated herb?

I also love planting fresh batches of parsley, basil and chives this time of year.

If you want a few other ideas, this is a little cheat sheet I tore out of a magazine back in 2008. Not even kidding. I keep this tucked away in my “garden” files. Yes, I have a manila folder for stuff like this. #cantstopwontstop

fall-veggies

If you zoom in, you’ll see broccoli, peppers, beets, radishes, spinach, cauliflower and peas added to this list.

Perfect Planters

In addition to tending to my personal farmer’s market, I like to jazz up the rest of the garden and entryway with some fall flair. I shift my overall color palette away from pinks and move toward purples. Pumpkins add a pretty orange accent.

Here are a few of my favorite combinations right now >>

fall-planter-with-tall-grasses

{via} You’ll notice purple fountain grass is kind of a theme in some of these ideas. I love the height you get with it, and it add texture with its feathery tips.

orange-leaves-with-kale

{via} This is quite a showstopper that uses yellow mums, bright peppers (and even a few artificial leaves) tucked in to accent the purple kale and fountain grass. So pretty!!

{via} This layered effect is really nice. The pop of orange from the pumpkins is awesome. And I like the combination of mums with the silvery dusty miller on the lower planter.

fall-planter-with-purple-and-bittersweet

{via} This colorful combo uses bittersweet at the base. You could easily find a wreath of bittersweet, and drape it around your planter to create this look. I also love the purple Mexican bush sage standing at attention in the back.

{via} This has such a lovely rustic look, doesn’t it? Both planters have coleus mixed with these honey supertunias.

purple-combination

{via} This purple bundle includes kale, mums, heuchera, and ornamental black pepper. I think it would be gorgeous with either white or orange pumpkins for fall. You could even accent the base of the urn with a burlap ribbon. Oooh,..

sweet-potato-and-coleus

{via} Finally, look at this luscious planter. It’s such a pretty combination of sweet potato vine and different varieties of coleus.

I could seriously search the Interwebs all day looking for gardening ideas. Online window shopping is the best. What ideas do you have? Let me know what’s going in your garden and planters!

One last note, if you’re curious about when to transplant some of your garden goodness, here’s a simple guide from this handy place. >>

XoXo,

Kate

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Why It’s Important to Clean Your Gardening Tools

garden-prevention

Whether you’re a beginner or master gardener, cleaning and taking care of your tools is essential. It not only protects your tools from rust, but also keeps your plants healthy.

Each time you clean your trowel, you’re removing soil that may have been contaminated by diseased plants. The same goes for your pruners. You want to sanitize them before each use so you don’t spread disease or bacteria around your pretty garden.

Which Tools to Clean?

Even the simplest patio garden requires a few tools, such as a trowel, pruners or kitchen scissors. And these hand tools are the most important ones to keep tidy. You use them the most – and they’re more likely to touch more things in the garden.

A few good ones to consider…

Gardening Trowel

This is considered one of the best gardening trowels.

Quality Pruners

best-gardening-pruners

These pruners are ranked the best in their category.

Hand Weeder

This is considered the best tool to is the best tool to extract, uproot, disrupt, and behead the most common small weeds invading your garden.

This is the best tool to extract, uproot, disrupt, and behead the most common small weeds invading your garden.

Tip: If you’re new to the hobby of gardening, this is one of the best articles I’ve found on understanding garden tools and what you really need. It’s definitely worth a read.

 Let’s Get Crackin’

Here are a few simple ways to keep your hand tools in prime condition.

Season Kickoff

Right now would be a great time to do these 4 simple steps – especially if you’re getting ready to do some fall planting.

  1. Spray each tool with WD-40.
  2. Dip each tool in and out of a bucket of sand until the grime is gone.
  3. Brush off the sand and let air dry.
  4. Once dried, store the tools in a bucket of sand.

After Each Use

Rinse with soapy water, dry your tools, and then store them (sharp ends facing down) in a bucket of sand. Why sand? It absorbs moisture and keeps your tools squeaky clean.

For pruners, be sure to sanitize with Lysol wipes or a sanitizing spray after each use.

beautiful-potting-area

Wouldn’t this be the most heavenly place to stash your gardening goodies?!

Season Wrap

Once you’ve had a hard freeze and the season is wrapping up for winter, you can clean your tools with WD-40 again, as you did for the season opener.

If you have wooden handles on any of your tools, smooth out any rough spots by gently rubbing with sandpaper. Then rub a small amount of linseed oil to preserve the wood and reduce splintering in the future. If you notice any rust, scrub the area with steel wool and try spraying with a rust-resistant primer.

vintage-garden-tools

Once your tools are clean, smooth and dry, you can store them in the bucket of sand in your shed.

bucket-of-sand

I hope that was helpful. Be sure to stop back on Thursday for some garden inspiration. I’ll share a few of my favorite veggies and plants for the fall.

XoXo,

Kate

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5 New Uses for Cupcake Liners

Happy Friday, sweet things. If you’ve been following me this week, you’ve noticed a theme: new uses for old things.

fresh-start

Today is a third edition that’s all about cupcake liners. These colorful paper discs can be incredibly handy – and pretty. Read on!

cupcake-liners-in-a-jar

{Look how smart this is. Glass spaghetti jars are the perfect size for a sleeve of standard cupcake liners.}

Before we begin, did you know…The paper baking cup became popular in the 1950s? They were produced by by an artillery manufacturer called the James River Corporation. They were motivated to produce something different in the post-war era because of the declining military market. So…cupcakes it is!

Okay, now here are five brilliant ways you can use cupcake liners – outside of a muffin tin:

{ONE} Gardening

Flowerpot Liner: When you don’t want your soil pouring right through the bottom of your flowerpot, it’s good to put a barrier around the drainage area. You can use rocks or even broken pieces of another terra cotta planter.

For another idea, drop a cupcake liner down inside the pot when planting. The liner won’t completely clog the hole, so water can gently drain through.

flower-pot-liner

{TWO} Serving

Drip Catchers: No one likes popsicle juice running down their arm on a warm day. Right? So make a simple drip catcher out of a cupcake liner. Yay!

P.S. These fruit and veggie bars are super delish!!

popcicle-holder

For a quick tip: I folded the paper liner in half and punched a small hole for my popsicle stick.

hole-punch-trick

Drink Covers: Another serving trick is to take a paper baking pan, which is like a sibling to the regular ‘ol cupcake liner, and place it over a drinking glass. I put it over a large Mason jar in the pic. below.

The “lid” keeps annoying bugs out of your glass. And if you’re really thinking ahead, you could have people write their names on the top so it serves as a drink label, as well.

drink-cover

I used the same hole-punch idea by folding the baking cup in half and punching a spot for my straw. Cheers!

baking-cups

{THREE} Driving

Cup Holder Protectors: If you’re not a fan of crumbs or strange, sticky substances getting jammed down inside the cup holders of your car, let me introduce you to silicone cupcake liners.

These magical things fit perfectly down inside your cup holder and can be easily removed, washed and returned at any given time. You can find them here.

{FOUR} Decorating

Paper Peonies: Oh, how I love a bundle of fresh peonies. When they’re not in season, like now, you can whip up a batch of these paper beauties.

These are made with cupcake liners that are all in various shades of pink. So pretty!

{source} The full tutorial can be found here, too.

{FIVE} Celebrating

Party Garland: Looking for an easy way to jazz up your next party? These party garlands are a cinch to string together.

I’d recommend putting something (like straws cut into 1-2 inch pieces) between each of the cupcake liners to help spread them out a bit.

Mini Ghosts: With Halloween right around the corner, I had to give you a perfectly themed idea. Much like yesterday’s post.

Take a large white cupcake liner, draw a cute or spooky face on one side, and then place it over a battery-operated tea light.

ghost

Here’s what it looks like assembled together. Wouldn’t it be cute to put like a dozen or so of these on a mantel or down the middle of a table?

img_2481

In addition to pulling off some of these tricks, I hope you can squeeze in a little baking this weekend, because who doesn’t appreciate a little lovin’ from the oven? Cupcakes rock.

In fact, my girls like to invite friends over to play Cupcake Wars. >>

cupcake-wars

This was a picture we took a couple of weeks ago at an overnight party. See the M&Ms getting dropped down into the batter? These girls had lots of tricks up their sleeves!

Oh, and for a quick baking tip, did you know to put uncooked rice in the bottom of your cupcake tins before lining them with your paper cups? The rice soaks up moisture and keeps the liners from getting greasy during baking. Gotta keep those liners looking pretty.

That’s a wrap – for now. Here’s to a great weekend all around!

XoXo,

Kate

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New Uses for Egg Cartons

Hi, friends! For the next installment of “new uses for old things,” I’m sharing ideas for egg cartons.

egg-carton-2

I’ve been on an egg kick lately since they’re packed with so much protein – and I’m on a Whole30ish diet. (I’m not as strict as the book would like me to be, but I’m definitely cutting out lots of carbs and cheese.)

Anyway, I’ve been collecting tons of egg cartons and decided to find ways to repurpose these interesting little boxes of cubicles.

First, a fun fact: Did you know a British Columbian newspaper editor invented the egg box out of paper in 1911? The invention was the result of a debate between a farmer and hotel owner over broken eggs – and both parties were blaming the other.

Now for the list. These ideas fall into two simple categories: practical and just plain pretty >>

Practical

A Cupcake Carrier

What a great way to get those cupcakes to the school party without squishing them onto a tray or inside of a plastic bin. The lid might be optional – depending on how elaborate you’ve gone on the frosting,

OR…A Deviled Egg Dish

I know this isn’t too far from its original purpose, but somehow it delighted me to see this simple idea. A picnic plus.

Junk Drawer Organizer

Those mini egg holes are perfect for collecting thumbtacks, safety pins, or other small odds and ends that land in your junk drawer.

Nail Polish Holder

I like how this is stacked or elevated so you can easily see your polish colors. If I walked into your bathroom and saw this display, I’d think I was in a nail salon. Gel or no?

K-cup Corral

Yes, please. I take all of my K-cups out of their original box as soon as I get home from the store. Is that just me? Then I just stick them in a drawer by my Keurig. I think this egg carton trick will keep them from sliding around when I open and close said drawer. Yay!

Pretty

Picture Frame or Mirror

Can you even believe those gorgeous flowers? They’re made with egg cartons!! This picture shows them glued to the edge of a mirror. You could do the same with a picture frame.

Flowers for Keeps

Here’s another source that shows you how to make show stopping egg carton flowers. You could hot glue these to pretty much anything you wanted to beautify. I’m thinking packages, lamp shades, Mason jar lids, headbands, napkin rings…

Tabletop Fairy Garden

You know how much I love a good fairy garden. Well, look at this darling idea that uses pieces of egg shell right in their cups to pull off the perfect miniature garden.

Herb Garden Gift

This might be the next gift I assemble for someone. It’s such a simple, yet beautiful idea. It’s a half carton, so it’s not too cumbersome. And like the fairy garden idea, this also uses the egg shells. This time they’re seedling starters. Cute, right?

Bats for Halloween!

I couldn’t leave you without sharing an idea for our next holiday: Halloween!! Look at these spooky bats, which are super easy to make. I think they’d look so cute dangling from the lights over our kitchen table or across the mantel.

I hope you’ve had fun scrolling through the list. Links to these projects are found under each photo, so be sure to click for more details.

Swing back by on Friday for the final list of the week. This time: new uses for cupcake liners. You won’t believe what these little paper cups can do.

See you then!!

XoXo,

Kate

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New Uses for Rubber Bands

Rubber bands

Don’t you love finding multiple uses for things? I have an entire Pinterest board dedicated to collecting ideas.

I wrote a post on 10 uses for loom bands awhile ago, and it turned out to be such a popular topic. If you haven’t read it, feel free to hop over to see what those mini rubber bands are good for (other than clogging your vacuum).

Anyway, I thought it would be fun to share a few helpful uses for the grandfather of loom bands – the original rubber band.

Fun fact: Did you know the first rubber band was made from discarded rubber products, such as tires, and it was used to wrap newspapers?

These humble, stretchy bands continue to surprise me with their many uses. I’ve lumped them into three basic categories:

{ONE} In a Pinch

If you’ve ever gotten stuck trying to remove a screw that’s been completely stripped, just wedge a rubber band in there so you can literally get a grip, man. Think of it like snow tires for your tools. It gives you the traction you need to get things moving.

My kids hate eating brown apples, and I don’t always have fresh lemons on hand to squeeze onto the open slices to keep them fresh. What’s the next best thing? A rubber band.

Wrap it around a pre-sliced apple so it stays in tact until lunchtime.

You can get a few more lunchbox hacks in this post.

sliced apple holder

{TWO} Keeping Order

I’m a big fan of using a pretty bookmark when I’m reading a novel. When it comes to sketching or writing in my journal, though, I like using a rubber band to hold my place.

I wrap it around the front of the book. That way I can easily flip to where I left off, and the pages from the front of the book (where I’ve already written) stay together. And this makes it easier to write. Happy dance.

bookmark

Have you ever had an entire tea bag (including the tag) drop down into your scorching cup of water? Sigh. My latest trick is to secure the string to your cup with a rubber band. Mornings just got a lot happier.

tea holder

Now that it’s allergy season, I’ve pulled this trick out of the box. 😉 I keep a full Kleenex box secured with a rubber band to an empty box. That way we always have a place to toss the trash. This is especially handy in places like the car. It keeps used tissues from getting shoved into cup holders – or the bottom of your purse!

tissue paper holder

{THREE} Purely Decorative

When working on craft projects, rubber bands make a great substitute for glue – especially when you don’t want something permanently secured.

For example, in the project below, I wanted to cover the outside of a vase with pencils. But I didn’t want to hot glue them to the side of my vase forever. So I used a rubber band.

This is the finished project. More details below on how I assembled all of this >>

finished vase

For the supplies, I used a box of pencils, a small Mason jar, and a rubber band to hold the pencils to the edge of the jar.

supplies for vase

Once the pencils were secured to the jar, I covered the rubber band with gold ribbon.

steps for vase

After this step, I filled the Mason jar with water and tucked the flowers down inside. For more flower arrangement ideas, be sure to check out last Friday’s post!

For my next trick, colorful rubber bands are used to jazz up plain packages. This was an idea I saw on Martha Stewart, and I was in awe of its simplicity and style.

That’s it for today. Let me know if you have any other rubber band hacks or genius decorative ideas. Be sure to swing back by on Thursday to see a few new uses for egg cartons.

Until then, have a beautiful and organized week, my friends! <3

XoXo,

Kate

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