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pop of color, wayfair, home decor

My style is very minimalist but I crave a pop of color like the air I breathe. I need it. I like clean lines and bright colors but not a lot of “Stuff”. I am not a chochky kind of girl. Mess makes me insane and too much going on is just, well, “too much” for me. Don’t get me wrong I love bright bold colors and patterns but everything in moderation. My dining room is no exception.

We bought an old house, circa 1977, and we are completely renovating it. It’s been a labor of love and it’s going a little slower than I would prefer but hey, if living in a perpetual episode of This Old House gets me the home I’ve always wanted, then I’m all in.

My dining room was stark white. For a brief moment we painted the upper half merlot red but that seemed to date the room and it wasn’t the pop of color I wanted. I wanted fresh and clean. We decided it was just too dark and drab for us. So, we scrapped the whole thing and started from scratch.

pop of color, wayfair, home decor

Currently, the top half of the dining room is beautiful, soft trellis wallpaper in robin’s egg blue. We are still in the process of adding Wainscoting below the chair rail but that didn’t stop me from feeling like I needed something to really make my dining room pop. After all, the décor is a big part of the dining experience. Well, that and the company!

pop of color, wayfair, home decor

I usually add pop with flowers because who can resist fresh flowers. My favorite flowers are peonies but mine are all in various shades of pink and I needed something brighter.

My daughters wanted something whimsical but I really crave simplicity so we compromised with LaMont Brights Placemats in Peacock. They come in 3 bright colors; lime, peacock and daffodil.

pop of color, wayfair, home decor

And we properly set the table for four with my favorite white dishes. There is just something about a cheery table that makes the food taste better and the entire meal more digestible.

pop of color, wayfair, home decor

For more great ideas of how to add that special pop of color to your home, check out the Wayfair Pop of Color Pinterest board.

pop of color, wayfair, home decor

What is your favorite way to add a pop of color to your home?

*Disclaimer: A huge thank you to Wayfair for sponsoring this post but all opinions and love for these gorgeous Peacock blue placemats and the pop of color they bring with them are all mine.
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Suavitel, fragrance pearls, home,mom
Disclosure: This is a compensated post written as a part of my Suavitel ambassadorship agreement but my love for Suavitel and the nostalgia it brings are all genuine.

You know how certain sights, sounds and smells remind you of special times and places in our lives? We all have them. Suavitel is one of those smells for me. It reminds me of home, more specifically my mom.

My mom has used Suavitel fabric softener for as long as I can remember. The house that my mom lives in, where I grew up, still smells like Suavitel because the fragrance permeates the sheets, covers, towels and clothes. As soon as I walk in the door, I know I’m home because I’m greeted by the smell of Suavitel and a hug from my mom.

I know, I sound like a super weirdo but it’s sort of how when you open an old storage tub of your big kid’s newborn clothes and you just sniff in all of that sweet baby goodness. No? It’s just me? Of course, I even relate that new baby smell with Suavitel because its what I’ve always used.

Honestly, I tried other fabric softeners when I first went away to college because that’s what all the other kids were using but it was missing something. It smelled awesome but it just didn’t smell like home and I missed home. I really missed my family and I especially missed my mom so I started using Suavitel and never looked back. To this day, Suavitel is the only fabric softener that I use. I hope one day that my girls will crack open a bottle of Suavitel in their local Target and think of me fondly.

New Suavitel® Fragrance PearlsTM in lavender or field of flowers scents with micro-encapsulated technology provides 5X longer lasting fragrance vs. using detergent alone.

Toss a little or a lot into the washing machine at the beginning of the wash and let its long lasting scent system work its magic for clothes that smell fresh for weeks. It’s best if used with Suavitel fabric softener.

What smell reminds you of home and your mom?

My whole house smelling like Suavitel for weeks on end is like one long hug from my mom.

 

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little luxuries, lavender, angel soft, sponsored post

This week I left the frigid below zero temperatures of the Midwest bound for LA and 70 degree weather to attend the #WeAllGrow Summit for Latinas. To say that I’m excited is a gross understatement. I’ve been doing all the usual fun conference stuff like obsessing over what to wear (in LA since I’ve never been), scheduling a little pampering for myself (so I don’t frighten any other bloggers away) and trying to schedule in face time with some of my favorite bloggers.

I’ve been badgering all of my LA friends about what I should wear because I don’t want to get laughed or pointed at and was told by my friend Jessica that I could wear sandals in February but my pedicure better be on point. I live in the Midwest; so obviously, my pedicure is not on point. Not even close. My feet have been hiding inside of fur-lined boots, my skin has been buried under layers of clothing and my entire beauty regime consists of mostly bathing, brushing my teeth and moisturizing. I’m not setting foot in California in this state, lest the pointing begin.

I’m dying the grays, waxing all the hair and undoubtedly getting my pedicure and manicure. I tried to schedule in a massage too but between deadlines and life, I just ran out of time. While a massage would have been perfect for relaxing my mind before a long day of flying and a week of intense networking, it just wasn’t meant to be.

I can imagine the smell of lavender oils and the ambient lighting filling the room. The scent of lavender always reminds me of a relaxing spa day. It’s one of those luxuries that we moms are not often afforded. I’m like Pavlov’s dogs in that way; I smell lavender, I instantly relax and associate the situation with luxurious pampering.

So imagine my surprise when I received a large box of Angel Soft toilet paper, lavender scented. Yes, it smells so good. My entire bathroom smells like a spa. I know it’s just toilet paper, but isn’t it the little things that make life special. In case you are wondering (because I was), no it’s not purple. It’s the same Angel soft toilet paper that it’s always been, only it smells fantastic and you’ll feel like you are pampering yourself every time you use it.

If you are interested in learning more or winning a year’s supply for yourself, you should totally RSVP for the Twitter party.

#LlevalaSuave Bilingual Twitter Party with @AngelSoftLatino

Date: Thursday, March 5, 2015, 5pm PST / 8pm EST

Where: On Twitter with the hashtag #LlevalaSuave

You can use this link for easy access starting now: https://twubs.com/LlevalaSuave

Co-Hosts: @En_TuZapatos @LorraineCLadish @MamaXXI @SassyMamainLA

Moderators: @lbconnect @laflowers

Special Guest: @AngelSoftLatino

Prizes: Three (3) giveaways of one (1) year’s supply of Angel Soft® with Fresh Lavender Scent bath tissue and a $100 gift card to a Spa

This is a sponsored campaign in collaboration with Angel Soft® and Latina Bloggers Connect. However, all opinions expressed are my own.

 

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review, laundry, vacuum, Shark rotator, clean house, domestic abilities

Ever walk into a play date or a friend’s house and think to yourself, ” Damn, how does she keep this place so clean with kids?” Me, neither. Just kidding. It happens all the time. I immediately ask her for the name of her cleaning lady. If she denies having a cleaning lady one of two things happens 1) I am amazed by her domestic goddess abilities and ask her to teach me her ways or 2) I decide we can no longer be friends because she either neglects her children or is a liar, liar, clean, pressed pants on fire.

I thought that I had it all figured out, this home business. No, I don’t mean working from home or my blog, I mean keeping my house from looking like a cyclone hit it while working from home and parenting smallish children. It’s hard, people. I don’t know how they do it but my kids can really mess up a house. I feel like I’m constantly cleaning and I am going to be completely honest with you, I don’t like it. In fact, I pretty much despise domestic labor.

My girls are not toddlers. It’s not about Cheerio crumbs and Cheez-it dust anymore. I can’t blame it on tiny hands and squished up puffs. This is all the damage of two semi-sophisticated young ladies who simply cannot get the concept of food actually making it into their mouths and can’t (or won’t) be bothered by picking up toys and clothes which leaves my floor looking like the toy box and their closet exploded, add to the mix crumbs and dirty plates on tables and I am ready to burn the house down. I feel like I need to go through the house with a leaf blower just to clear a path sometimes. Did I mention I don’t like mess.at.all?

My husband says its because they live in excess and simply have no room to put it all away. He blames me. I say they are just the cutest little pigs around. I blame them. They blame the dog.

I do my best, in between deadlines, appointments, errands, cooking dinner and keeping little people alive, I clean the house but it never seems to be clean enough because as I clean one room, I swear, they are making it their single mission to destroy the rest of the house. It truly is maddening.

I want to hire a maid to come once a week but then I realized that I don’t have a schedule that permits me to scrub my house down once a week and how could I ever let a stranger see my house in such a state? It’s bad enough that my husband sees it. Who has time to do all that cleaning before the maid comes? And if I didn’t, she would surely double her prices and tell all of her other domestic engineer friends about how dirty my house was and the next thing you know, I’d be blackballed by all help…everywhere.

What’s worse than what I see…the mess, is the stuff that I can’t see. The things that I can’t even begin to consider like dust mites and such. The thought of it makes my skin crawl. I try to pretend that they don’t exist but I know that they do so I basically stay at a defcon 1 stress level about my house at all times. In fact, I am wondering just how many dust mites can live on a single dust bunny (like the one under my sofa) at this very moment. Oops, I may have just vomited in my mouth a little bit.

Then, I received an unexpected gift in the mail. Not something that I would normally get excited about but hey, I like it when the FedEx guy brings me goodies so I tore into it and I have to say, it is quickly becoming one of my favorite pieces in my house.

Behold the Shark® Rotator® Powered Lift-Away® . Yes, it’s a vacuum cleaner. I used to be the girl who swore I’d break my husbands kneecaps if he ever gave me a vacuum, iron or weight loss machine as a gift. In fact, I swore it. These are not gifts in my mind, these are necessities and commentary on the state of how I handle things. So thanks, no thanks.

But Shark sent me this and so there was no husband to be offended by. I have to be honest, I have a Dyson and after emptying container on the Shark, I can tell you that my Dyson has been doing a piss poor job. Maybe it wasn’t all the kids’ fault. Maybe the Dyson was failing to do its job and the kids weren’t habitual offenders…at least not where the floor was concerned. They are fully accountable for the toys and clothes on the floor but maybe not the crumbs and enough hair to create an entirely new dog or child.

Here are some of the features:
• Rotator® power nozzle with motorized brush that deep cleans and reaches further under furniture than any other vacuum (as evidenced by said hair and dust).
• Powerful LED headlights on the nozzle and handle to improve visibility under furniture or in dark, hard-to-see spaces (this is amazing but be warned vacuuming in the dark is scary).
• Fingertip Controls for easy transitions between hard floors, carpet and area rugs (I love not having to bend over to switch the height).
• Designed with a HEPA filter and Shark’s Anti-Allergen Complete Seal Technology™ to capture and hold 99.99 percent of dust and allergens (this is a must in our house because 4 out of 4 people who live here, suffer from allergies and fear of dust bunnies.)

laundry, vacuum, Shark rotator, clean house, domestic abilities, review

• Additional features include:
o Hard Floor Genie™ bare floor attachment picks up large debris and fine dust in one easy step (easy enough for a 7 and 9-year-old to use).
o Extra-long 30 foot power cord provides maximum range for cleaning large spaces.
o Specialized tools to offer versatility in cleaning include a premium pet power brush, upholstery tool, flexible crevice tool and canister caddy.

My Shark is awesome and that is saying something because up until now, I was a die hard Dyson fan but the dust don’t lie and now, maybe, I can get that maid I’ve always wanted and deserved without the shame of her judging my domestic abilities.

Disclosure: I was provided a Shark Rotator Powered Lift-Away for review purposes but all opinions and clean rooms are mine, all mine.

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wayfair, pillows, poufs, throws

A house is four walls and a roof but a home is your soft place to land. When the Big Guy and I bought the house we currently live in, we knew we wanted some place to make our own; that felt lived in, welcoming and not sterile and brand new. Don’t get me wrong, new builds are amazing, out first two homes were new builds but for all that new shiny house smell, they felt sterile, there were no mature trees and it took a lot to fill them to give them character; to make them ours.

The house we live in now is definitely a work in progress. It is almost as old as I am, built in ’77 but from the moment we walked in to the place, we could see past the paneling and fixture updates to the potential; hosting Thanksgiving dinners, birthday parties for years to come, Halloweens spent trick or treating with neighborhood friends and waking up Christmas morning. I could see my girls walking down those stairs all dreamy eyed and imagine them lighting up when they saw what Santa had brought. I could see all of it. It was the house, I wished I’d grown up in. Still, it wasn’t “our” house.

We’ve updated fixtures and appliances; we’ve painted walls and torn out closets. We’ve laid down wood flooring, removed paneling and replaced cabinetry. We’ve changed the very landscape of the home, to modernize it without losing that cozy feeling. There is nothing quite like a brand new lush shag carpet for kids to lay on in the movie room floor. Still, something was missing.

home decor,wayfair, pillows, poufs, throws

I’ve always wanted my house to be a place that family and friends feel at home in. I want it clean and stylish but I don’t want it to feel like a museum. Life is meant for living and I think waiting for special occasions is overrated. I want my girls to know that life is meant to be experienced every single day.

I’ve never been the mom who says “you can’t play/wear/ use with that” because, in my mind, if I buy a toy, piece of jewelry, clothing, furniture, whatever it may be…I bought it with people enjoying it in mind, not for it to set in a cabinet or closet collecting dust because then what’s the point? Then I’ve wasted money and chances at happiness. Nobody should ever waste chances at happiness. When you die, nobody’s going to remember the perfect condition your furniture was in or how fancy your dishes were, they are going to remember how you made them feel when they were with you, in your home.

So, how do I make the house we live in feel homey? For me, it’s all about comfort. I like nice things and I especially like them if they are comfortable and comforting. I’ve found the easiest way to make a house feel inviting is to make people feel at home when they are there and that can be done very easily with comfort items like pillows, poufs and throws. Oh, my!

wayfair, pillows, poufs, throws, home decor

As a family, we spend most of our family time in the movie room because when given the choice, you always watch movies on a big screen while cuddling on a cozy sectional. So, I’ve made it my mission to make it the coziest room on the planet so I’ve been looking at all things comfy and now I’d like your help choosing which pieces I should add.

wayfair, pillows, poufs, throws

 

Moe’s Home Collection Lamb Fur Wool Pillow 

 

wayfair, pillows, poufs, throws

Surya Ruffle and Frill Pillow

 

wayfair, pillows, poufs, throws

WovenWorkz Charlotte Ruffled Acrylic Throw

 

wayfair, pillows, poufs, throws Cashmere Collection Cashmere and Merino Wool Throw

 

wayfair, pillows, poufs, throwsIkram Design Moroccan Leather Pouf Ottoman

 

wayfair, pillows, poufs, throws

Mi-Zone Madison Park Kelsey Round Pouf Ottoman

But wait, just for you, Wayfair is offering a promo code that will run from November 20 through November 24th for 15% off ANY Pillow, Pouf or Throw. The code is: WFPTP15

Which pieces do you think would add the coziest feel to the room? How do you make your home cozy for the holidays?

Disclosure: I am a Wayfair ambassador and  this is a compensated post but, as always,  all opinions are my own.

Alexandra Ferguson “Be Nice or Leave” Decorative Pillow

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Nespresso, Williams & Sonoma, virtuoline,Keurig, Starbucks, coffee

I have a new tall, dark and handsome in my life and his name is Nespresso. Thank you William’s and Sonoma for introducing us.

I used to be a Keurig devotee. We were best friends ( friends with benefits really); every morning he’d wake me up with a hot, sweet caramel kiss on the lips. But I cheated on him. I couldn’t help myself.

I longed for something more and I was tempted by an old familiar flame, Starbucks. Beautiful and glorious bastard that he is, who could say no?

He was my addiction. He was so hot, smelled so good and I could just pull him to my lips and stay there for hours.

Keurig is better than Folgers, I’ll never deny that, but Keurig is no Starbucks not even by a long shot (not even with an extra shot ). He is the poor mom’s Starbucks. It’s like the difference between Lena Dunham and Angelina Jolie, Zach Galifinakas and Alexander Skarsgard, a hairless Chihuahua and a Unicorn. My God, you know you always want the unicorn even if it is impractical so beautiful that it sears your retinas to look upon it and the damn thing costs an arm and a leg to house and feed. No matter, you must have it. Who cares if you have to second mortgage the house? F*ck those brats and that damn private school. Don’t you deserve to be happy? Coffee is all we have moms. That and those damn yoga pants.

But life is not so black and white and neither is coffee. Well, unless you drink it black in which case…you could just exit this conversation right now and head to the nearest Speedway. They’ve got you covered, it’s like 99 cents for a metric ton of coffee. Lucky bastards.

I forgot that there is a beautiful world filled with sexy shades of milky caramels, where unicorns run free, are grass fed and only came when called.Where children don’t bicker and teething babies sleep through the night. Where toddlers aren’t overly attached and teens still like you. ( I went too far with the teen analogy, didn’t I? I could feel it going too far when Is aid it. Damn it. If you go too close to the sun, you get burned. Rookie mistake. Wait, where was I? Oh yeah…) It can be beautiful. I forgot that life is not made of only Folgers and Keurig’s alone…there is Nespresso!! And I’ve been told that what I have with my Nespresso is not an addiction but a “lifestyle choice”. Whatever you want to call it. It’s who I am and I love it and I don’t care who knows it.

Nespresso, Williams & Sonoma, virtuoline,Keurig, Starbucks, coffee

Nespresso machines and Nespresso pods are the GD unicorns of coffee makers and at home brewing.The Aeroccino, it’s silent but I swear I can hear angels singing every single time I brew a cup. Each time I make a Nespresso at home, the world is a better place. It’s more vibrant and beautiful. It’s not coffee, it is happiness in a cup.

I can enjoy it in my comfy chair in my pajamas or yoga pants or naked if I want too. ( Wait, no, I don’t drink coffee naked, that would just be weird and dangerous, right?). It just tastes better. I’m not sure if it’s because each cup is fresh and never scorched or only cost me 95 cents. Maybe it’s because I can flavor my froth. Maybe it’s because I’ll never need whip again because good head beats whip every damn day of the week. Maybe it’s the perfect excuse to entertain. Whatever the reason is, I’ve ended it with Keurig and Starbucks and I are on an indefinite break like Ross and Rachel. But unlike Rachel, I’m never going back.

Now, if I could just figure out how to make a damn Oprah Chai Latte that tastes as good as Starbucks…at home.

 

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Chase, talking to kids about money, teaching kids to save

I have partnered with Walmart to bring you this sponsored post and information about this awesome new program Savings Catcher ; as always, all opinions are my own.

A couple of weeks ago, I wrote about trying out this new Savings Catcher program at WalMart. There is a WalMart just a stones throw away from my house, so I go there often for the staples like paper products and hygiene products. I won’t lie, I spend a lot of money there.

My mother-in-law is always raving about how WalMart price matches, the only problem is that you have to remember to bring in the ad and remember to tell the cashier and then you hold up the line and you become “that” person. I’m about as good at remembering the ad as I am remembering to actually bring my bags and coupons to the store. I have great intentions but I just don’t have the brain power on most days to remember those little things. It’s a great idea but I just never can remember to bring the paper, besides most of the ads I view are online anyways so Savings catcher is awesome because I don’t have to lug coupons and ad matches (though I could to get the best deal EVER!)

With Savings Catcher, I simply do my shopping and then within the week, I log on and enter my receipt number and voila…the savings catcher lets me know if I’ve actually gotten any savings that week. If anything goes on sale or gets marked down during that week, the savings catcher “catches it” and I save money. Now, I know in theory, I am putting the effort in, just like I would if I were price matching or clipping coupons. The difference is that I can do this from the comfort of my own home and not hold up any lines.

So, since I’ve started using it, I’ve earned about $10, for doing nothing other than buying what I was already going to be buy at the lowest price already so, if you ask me, it works. I like it. The holiday season is right around the corner and Walmart always has great Black Friday sales that we hit for toys and kids electronics and we all know how at that time of the year, sales are changing constantly, I will be putting my savings catcher account to work. Maybe I’ll even earn enough to buy myself something.

I’d recommend that you log into www.walmart.com/SavingsCatcher today and enter any receipts you have from the last 7 days, and let Savings catcher check to see if you’ve earned any savings. Just remember, it has to be within 7 days so do it at least once a week if you are a frequent Walmart shopped.

 

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Wayfair, rug, promo code, home renovations, interior design, decor, updating on a budget

Have you ever bought an old house and had to renovate it? Loads of work? Loads of fun? Lots of money( it doesn’t have to be)? Correct answer? D. All of thee above. Talk about perfect timing, I just became a brand ambassador for Wayfair right as I’m getting neck deep in renovations. Our love affair started long before I ever became part of the Wayfair family. I was a customer who fell head over heels in love with a citron, chevron chair and the rest is history. Amazing product plus amazing customer service and they had me at helloJ Compensation for writing about the things I already love, win: win baby.

Anyways, my family bought our first “older” house almost two years ago. Prior to that point, we had owned two new builds but we really wanted to buy an older home with good bones and make it our own. It just always felt like the new builds lacked the character, craftsmanship and charm of the more vintage homes. So, when we found our “bones” in the neighborhood we wanted for the girls, a little bit of manual labor and hard work just didn’t seem like that much of a deterrent; so we bought ourselves an old house. I call it my John Hughes house because it’s the kind of house and neighborhood that I wished I grew up in back in the 80’s, only it looks like 1980 was the last time anyone even attempted to renovate.

It’s been a true labor of love and sometimes, I feel like its a money pit but slowly it is coming together. When we first moved in, we had to rip all the carpet out because the previous occupant had cats and apparently thought it was a good idea to let them urinate inside the house. I’m not sure a litter box ever saw the inside of this house. I’m pretty sure the cats were feral and maybe even the occupant because the stories I could tell you about this place. Jeez.  But rest easy, my friends, I am not living in a feline pee soaked home because we ripped up the carpet, I bleached the concrete (yep, that’s a thing) and opened all the windows in the house and let it air out for a week and then repeated the process. Once the house was sufficiently free from the urine smell, we installed new laminate flooring throughout the first floor (sure, we have it for the second floor but it’s a process people and there are only so many weekends in the year).

We had to rip out all the cabinets and reno the entire kitchen, which is still in progress. Good news is I have all new cabinets and appliances but I spent the last 3 days sanding drywall and smearing my walls with more joint compound to try to rectify the “texturizing” job the last owner did on the wall. It looks as if maybe a monkey was throwing poo at the wall or maybe she tried to bury a body or maybe some extra feral cats who misbehaved. What it doesn’t look is good. It’s the ugliest thing I’ve ever seen, quite frankly and I’m not that hung up on the superficial. But that’s another renovation story for another day, maybe in a month or so once I’ve sanded and skimmed for the 15th time and had the balls to put some paint on it.

Let’s just say when we decided to buy our house, it was under duress (we were living with our in laws) and it was time for us to get our own place (for the sake of all of us) and on some days, I think perhaps our eagerness to get back into a home of our own wrote a check that we just don’t have the skill or ability to cash. But, you know me? I’m no quitter. Come on, I can put in the time and effort and read a few tutorials and binge watch DIY Youtube videos as easy as the next gal. I’ve got this! Wait, did I just say that? (This is where I usually get myself into some trouble.) But this is how you save a little money, by getting down and dirty you can save the money you would have spent on labor on actual things and check your favorite websites at least weekly for deals.You will be amazed at the deals you get with a little patience and always google for promo codes before buying anything online.

Wayfair, rug, promo code, home renovations, interior design, decor, updating on a budget

I started with the easiest room to remedy or, as I like to call it, my favorite room in the house because it’s in the least amount of renovation transition; our media room.  We removed the feral cat carpeting ( FYi, I hear it’s the absolute latest in home décor interior design for 2015…no not really , don’t do that!) and replaced it with laminate wood flooring.

Wayfair, rug, promo code, home renovations, interior design, decor, updating on a budget

 

We painted the asylum white walls charcoal grey (not Christian Gray because I just couldn’t stand my breath to be hitching all the time like thatJ ). Installed some white crown molding and are going to replace all the 1980’s wood baseboard with more modern white baseboards. We sold our Antique Victorian Furniture and replaced it with a more stylish and modern grey sectional.

Wayfair, rug, promo code, home renovations, interior design, decor, updating on a budget

I replaced my Victorian his and her’s chairs with two of those lovely citron chevron chairs (try saying that real fast 3 times). I picked up a new more modern lamp and a few pieces of art (I still need a few more) and I just bought some awesome room darkening drapes for the picture window and the entry way (movie room needs to be dark in the middle of the day so kids can watch Isabelle the American Girl Movie and Frozen 27 bazillion times).

Wayfair, rug, promo code, home renovations, interior design, decor, updating on a budget

So the room is almost done but it is still missing something. I think maybe it needs something to add warmth and coziness. All that beautiful laminate wood flooring just doesn’t scream “cozy” so mama is looking for a new rug then the room will be 85% done (no room is ever 100%) but it would be nice to have just one room that’s finished and not being renovated where I can go and sit, sip coffee and go to my happy place.

Wayfair, rug, promo code, home renovations, interior design, decor, updating on a budget

So which rug, would you choose?  The White? The silver? A mix? I’d love your help. Check out my Movie Room Pinterest page and let me know which one you like.

And because I know that you are all as budget savvy and décor loving as I am, I’m sharing my very own special promo code for you to use to save 15% on all area rugs if you purchase between 7/31 to 8/4/14.

If you are a Wayfair customer already, you know that they hardly ever do promo codes. I mean they run crazy daily sales, clearance, free shipping and a rewards program but a promo code is nearly unheard of so this is VERY EXCLUSIVE!!! And you better believe that I am buying myself my new rug this week too and then my room will be almost perfect.

My Promo code to save 15% on all area rugs from Wayfair is RUGLUV13

Leave a comment and tell me which rug I should go with and let me know if you are getting yourself something pretty from Wayfair too. If you’re just not that into shag ( as I obviously am) maybe check out the jute and sisal rugs, I hear they are great if you are looking for something in a more natural fiber to spruce up a high traffic area.I’m not sure which rug to choose. Obviously not pee soaked is my number 1 quality that I’m looking for in a carpet but I’d like it to be stylish too. Maybe I am superficial…just a little bit.

At first I thought a bright white rug and then I was all like, hey dumb a**, you have kids and a dog and there is not enough Scotchgaurd in the world to save a snow-white shag carpet from those three. So, I’m thinking maybe silver? But I don’t want it to be too monochromatic; I’m just not that cool. I need something in between that says, “ Hey..I’m cool and chic but kid friendly too.”  Help!

Which area rug from Wayfair would you choose for this room?

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swiffer, bissell, swiffer bissell steamboost, sponsored

This holiday cleaning tips post is brought to you by Swiffer® as part of a Type-A Parent Community Sponsored Post.

Next Wednesday is Christmas; company will be arriving on Monday which means I need to get my house “company” worthy. That means putting away the clean laundry, clearing the counter of any dishes and dusting and cleaning the wood floors and then trying to keep it that way with company, kids, a dog and a Christmas tree that’s losing its needles like its job.

I love when people come to visit but I hate the deep clean that I need to give my house before everyone shows up and worse, I hate the stress that it creates. It’s like a buzz kill for my holiday spirit. So this year, I am not going to worry about the deep clean. I am going to clean my house and if it looks lived in and loved on during the holidays, even better. Deep breaths.

If you are a clean freak, Type-A, obsessive/compulsive cleaner like I am here are a few tips and tricks to keep your house looking company worthy all year.

  1. To pick up small pieces of broken glass, press pieces of bread onto the affected area.
  2. To get blood out of fabrics, use hydrogen peroxide. Apply it directly to the stain and then launder in the washing machine.
  3. To clean the bottom of the iron, sprinkle salt on the ironing board and iron back and forth.
  4. To clean a microwave oven, add four tablespoons of lemon juice to one cup of water in a microwave-safe bowl. Boil for five minutes in the microwave, allowing the steam to condense on the inside walls of the oven. Then wipe them with a soft cloth
  5. To remove fingerprints from stainless-steel appliances, place a small amount of baby oil on a napkin and wipe the affected areas. The fingerprints will just wipe away.
  6. To remove marker pen off hard surfaces, spray on hair spray and then wipe it off.
  7. To remove cat and dog hair from clothes and furniture, rub them with damp rubber gloves.
  8. To restore toilet bowls back to their shiny best, clean with old, flat Coke or Pepsi. To dissolve limescale, leave the soda overnight to soak.

For my floors, the dreaded floors, this year I am using the new Swiffer Bissell steamboost. Honestly, I think it does just as good of a job as my Shark steamer but costs about half the price. I have tried everything on my floors to rid them of streaks and spots. I’ve even gotten on my hands and knees and scrubbed like Cinderella but still, a film remained. The Swiffer Bissell steamboost seemed to get rid of some of the built up film. I am interested to see what it looks like after a couple more uses. I can say that it definitely got up all of the salt residue left behind by my children’s snow boots.

The Swiffer BISSELL® SteamBoost™ is a steam mop that deeply penetrates dirt and helps remove messes mops can leave behind. Fill it with water, attach a Steam Pad and plug it in. No other cleaning solutions are needed.

The special Steam Pads have a steam-activated, dirt-dissolving cleaning solution that pulls dirt from surfaces and locks it away. SteamBoost™ is light, easy to use and safe on tile, finished wood and laminate floors. Do not use on waxed or unfinished wood floors.

What’s your best tip or trick for cleaning wood or wood laminate floors?

This sponsored post was brought to you by Swiffer®. For a limited time, get a $15 prepaid card when you purchase a SteamBoost Steam Mop Starter Kit between 11/24/13 and 12/31/13. Swiffer BISSELL® SteamBoost™ combines a dirt-dissolving cleaning solution with the power of steam for a deep clean that gets messes mops can leave behind. Also be sure to like Swiffer on Facebook and follow @swiffer on Twitter.

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first moments, baptism, tide, vivid white

white, first moments, tide, life, bellaMy daughter is about to celebrate her birthday in a few days. I always seem to get a bit emotional around birthdays. Logically, I know my daughter is growing older but, in my heart, she will always be my fresh newborn that they laid on my chest, swaddled so tightly in her soft, white receiving blanket. I couldn’t believe how something so small and vulnerable, begging me to love her and protect her from the world could be my greatest honor and privilege in life but she has been from that moment on.

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