Less or More for Christmas?

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Christmas 2017 header mantle

That is the Question

Some years we go a little overboard. Other years we keep it simple. I enjoy all forms of holiday cheer, but this year is quite a different one for us.

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Patio Lighting Update

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Nautical Vintage Outdoor Lighting

Here’s my big flea market find from last weekend in Hayward, WI. I’m pretty pleased with these beauts! This past weekend Joe, my parents and I were visiting my Grandparents’ cabin and we took a trip to a giant Monday-only flea market. I instantly fell in love with these glass orbs and thought of a few uses for them:

  • DIY pendant lights
  • Candle holders with rope handles
  • Luminaries

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Upcycled and Repurposed Gift Guide

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how to recycle old clothes into new life

 

Hope you enjoyed Thanksgiving! We had a lot of fun doing our annual Turkey Trot, even though it was a little wet and wild outside. We got two rounds of turkey, visiting family all around the metro. And we still have a Friendsgiving to look forward to. Bring on the leftovers!

If you got a little burnt out on Black Friday and Cyber Monday shopping, it’s ok. I actually swore off Black Friday shopping a few years ago. It was after heading out in very icy conditions… I think I was looking for a crock pot or something petty. Long story short, I ended up rear-ending someone because my brakes couldn’t handle a fresh ice patch, and that was a very short-lived little shopping trip. I decided all the madness of consumerism and downright danger were just not worth saving a few bucks. I took a step back and thought about how silly the whole thing is. Thanksgiving is about friends, family and togetherness. Where’s the gratitude in a $19.99 crockpot and fender bender? So that was the end of my Black Fridays. I went cold turkey. (Thanks for noticing the pun.)

Gift Giving Alternatives

But I’m all for Small Business Saturday, the day after Black Friday. I fully support the notion of using our cash to support local shops rather than big box stores. We vote with our dollars, you know? I’m guilty of deal hunting at chain stores, but I really want to try to support more small businesses. It just feels good. While I’m trying to cut back on holiday shopping in general, I think at least being mindful of where I’m using my money is a step in the right direction. That said, I’m hoping to do a lot more Christmas crafts this year! And please, before you throw something away consider first donating it, recycling it or upcycling it. Organize a clothing swap, have a DIY-off with friends, make mittens, sew a quilt, make shop rags or give it to someone in need instead.

Our friends at Cotopaxi have some ideas for recycling and repurposing as well, and have a promo code for you at the bottom of this post if you’d like to check out their website.

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Handmade Backpacks

What we really love about Cotopaxi is that all the backpacks are handmade by someone who otherwise may not have a job. The person gets to personally design the bag with colors and fabrics that inspire them. No two bags are alike. And all the fabric is repurposed, fabric that would otherwise have ended up in a landfill. It’s a win-win. I’m impressed with their commitment to impact sourcing – the people who make these bags earn a decent wage to actually improve their quality of life.

If you have a certain someone on your shopping list who’d like a unique, socially responsible, durable and useful gift, we’d highly recommend checking them out! There’s a promo code just below. Watch this video for their inspiring story:

 

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Cotopaxi did not sponsor this post. We just think they have a great business model and mission worth sharing and we hope you will too!

 

What’s your favorite way to repurpose fabric or clothing?

Storage Alert

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Bookshelf Hack

Not exactly a hack, but I’m using a bookshelf as shelving for pants. I have a bad habit of over-stuffing drawers full of my clothes, so I needed a remedy. Bingo – used bookshelf! It’s now an extension of my closet and dresser space. I swung by the Goodwill and snatched this up for the cool price of $3.99! I was hoping to find an old dresser that I could gut and refinish, but this thing is the perfect size and needs no work at all. Practically new. And for the price, I couldn’t say no.

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Fresh Canvas

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New Works of Art

Ok, not the finest art but hey. I like simple pick-me-ups. I spotted these mini canvases, where else but at Menards. I was just rummaging through them and found 2 that I just couldn’t leave without. Actually 3, but I made myself choose just two.

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The Office: Season Two

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Attic Office

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Bathroom Remodel

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Enter the bathroom

Tiling and Painting

Since we did the dual shower heads, we decided to extend Project Bathroom Renovation. Come check it out!

DSC01908Enter if you dare

We noticed some mold spots starting to come through the paint in the shower, so we took the chance to do our first ever tiling job. The previous homeowners had only an eggshell paint in the bathroom, which was just asking for mold spores.
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