simple wedding photo collage

I’ve wanted to hang some of our wedding photos in our bedroom for years and have just never got around to it. When I received a coupon for a super sale at Snapfish I figured I should jump on it. Most of the frames we already had and the two large ones I purchased with a Michael’s gift card (thanks Mom!). So all in all this photo collage wall cost me very little.

simple wedding photo wall collage

I also framed a greeting card and a free printable that I had found on Pinterest. Our wedding invitation is also up there.

i love you to the moon and back printable you and me greeting card

I laid out the frames on the floor so I could arrange and rearrange how I’d like the collage set, before hanging. It took me about 10 minutes to hang all the frames and I love the way it came out.

wedding photo collage

I plan to hang something in the long vertical space that seems empty, I’m just not sure what yet. Potentially a vintage key or dried flowers. It’s exactly what I wanted to fill that wall space with and I love looking at them and remembering that day. Now, if I could just take 5 minutes to de-clutter those book shelves!

boston, one year later

I had a different post planned for today, but on Sunday night, I had just gotten into bed, when Al came in and said Sports Center was about to air a piece about the Boston Marathon. I jumped up and ran out to catch it. It was an amazing piece that I was so touched by.

I’m sharing it today in memory of those lost on that terrible day a year ago and in honor of those injured who fight everyday to regain normalcy in their lives. I’m sharing it for the runners, spectators and for the city, to show what community is and how one comes together after tragedy. I’m sharing it for the Boston sports fan, because it’ll make you proud to call this city your home.


broccoli & cheese soup recipe

I’ve never met anyone who doesn’t love the broccoli and cheese soup from Panera Bread. I can’t eat it anymore but I LOVE it. I decided to take a stab at it and it turned out pretty darn good…I even took one very small bite of it to make sure Al wasn’t just saying it was good!

broccoli & cheese soup recipe


1/2  onion, diced
1/4 cup melted butter
1/4 cup flour
2 cups half-and-half
2 cups chicken broth
2 cups broccoli, chopped
1 cup sliced carrots
1/4 teaspoon of salt
1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
1/2 teaspoon pepper
8 oz. shredded cheddar cheese


In a large stock pot saute the butter with the onions until soft. Add the flour and mix for a few minutes, until there are no lumps. Slowly add the half & half and the chicken broth, stirring the entire time. Let simmer for 20 minutes, stirring occasionally to prevent sticking.

broccoli cheese soup

Add the broccoli and carrots and continue cooking on low for 25 minutes. Mix in seasonings and pour into a blender (you may have to do this in a few batches if it doesn’t all fit in the blender). Blend until pureed well. Return mixture to the stock pot, add the cheese and cook over low heat until the cheese is melted. Eat and enjoy!

maximize savings on daily deal sites

It’s no surprise that I’m a huge fan of daily deal sites. If you’re focused on purchases that you really NEED and aren’t just buying because “it’s a good deal!” then you can really save a lot of money. I recently learned of a way to maximize savings at one specific daily deal site through the use of…

Lavish Coupons is a large online coupon site that features some of the top brands and retail vendors, including industries such as apparel, fashion, shoes, electronics, sports and more. The list of stores goes on and on!

One store I’m most excited about is Gilt, an online daily deal site that sells designer brands for men, women, children and for the home. It’s a membership only site, but it’s free to join.


I’ve made my fair share of purchases from Gilt over the years! The good deals from Gilt combined with the extra savings, specifically for Gilt’s site, from Lavish Coupons make for some phenomenal savings! When I shop daily deal sites I had no idea that you could find additional savings on top of the already discounted prices.

I wait for my daily Gilt emails every morning and now I’ll most definitely be combining the super discounted prices with additional savings from Lavish Coupons.

This was a sponsored post from Lavish Coupons. Though, as always, all opinions, statements and thoughts are my own. I only recommend things with you guys that I truly find helpful!

high five for friday!

I’ve been mixed up on my days all week. So in my head it’s Thursday, but reality is waaaay better. What’s good for your weekend? We’ve got no formal plans, which is actually quite nice. Linking up again today. Enjoy your weekend!

high five for friday1. Drove 3 hours (roundtrip!) on Tuesday night to pick this up. It’s an awesome piece, solid wood, was a great price and had a terrible paint job. All the things I look for before a big furniture makeover. Can’t wait to get started and rip those terrible drawer pulls off!

2. Tried out a new cider brewery in Denver last night. I usually don’t care for ciders but these we’re exceptionally delicious.

3. New makeup arrived in the mail!

4. Scored a great deal at Snapfish this week. It was their 14th birthday so they gave $14 away. I ordered (2) 11×14 prints, a 5×7 and a custom greeting card all for about $6 out of pocket!

5. Love this guy. Can’t wait to get my first pedicure of the season!


diy shower curtain {with a bed sheet}

Despite our apartment being this itsy bitsy place, we have really nice, high ceilings. Which can make any space feel larger. It’s also nice to live in a place where Al doesn’t have to duck under light fixtures and door ways (our last place was made for short people). Since the ceilings are so high I couldn’t find a shower curtain that wasn’t $50+ to accommodate the height. I wanted something very subtle and I just figured I’d wait until I found it.

diy shower curtain with a flat bed sheet

And then I did. For $4.99 at a thrift store near my work. This thrift store has 25% off on Thursdays so I pop in every once in a while on my way home from work. There was the perfect flat bed sheet that was white with a very soft grey pattern on it. It was brand new, tag still on. I always love finding newbies at the thrift store.

To make it the right size I laid the entire thing out on the floor then laid the current, too short, shower curtain on top. I measured the length that I wanted it to be and then cut around the edges being sure to add in the extra inches when cutting.

diy shower curtain

I hemmed all the sides of it to have a seamless curtain. To make the holes to hang it I knew I could just cut slits and sew along the edges and call it a day. But I like the look of grommets and I figured they would be easier, quicker and look nice. So I grabbed a box at Joanns for $14.99, but I used a coupon (obviously).

Following the instructions on the package Al hammered and secured each of the grommets. I had attempted to, but one swing of the hammer from him was equivalent to like ten of mine and he always had it secured on the first swing, so he won that job. Marry muscles, folks, makes every project easier.

diy grommets

That was it! Final cost was $3.75 for the curtain with the 25% off and $8.99 for the grommets, with my 40% Joann coupon, for a total of $12.74 plus some tax.  A whole heck of a lot better than paying upwards of $50 for a darn shower curtain! And one tip too…I thought we’d have to buy an extra-long liner, but instead we were sure to hang the curtain rod at just the right height so the regular liner still fits it just hits the top of the tub instead of going all the way to the bottom of the tub side. I thought water would still splash up and escape since the liner was too short but it doesn’t!

shower curtain

I love the look of it, the simplicity and the airiness. I’m also really happy we went with the grommets because I love the steel look of them. For $4.99 at Ross I also grabbed a stainless steel shower curtain rod. That was one of those things that I went back and forth on. We didn’t need it, the one that was up was perfectly fine, but I just loved the way the steel rod pulled the whole thing together. And Al was basically like it’s $5 get over it and go buy it. Sometimes I’m even cheaper than you guys think. I even saved the white rod that came in the apartment so I can take the steel one with me when we move out.  #crazylady.

how to create a bar area at home

I love bar carts and bar cabinets and any space that suggests a bar area. Don’t you think it just makes that glass of wine that much more fancy and appealing?!

how to create a home bar area

When we got married my bridesmaids gifted us this amazing wine rack from Crate & Barrel (no longer for sale). I carted this thing, alone, on a Southwest flight from Boston all the way to Denver. It breaks down but it was still huge and hilarious.

crate and barrel wine rack

It currently lives in our “dining room,” which is approximately 4 feet x 4 feet, if you were wondering. I created a simple bar area on the lower shelf of the wine rack.

vintage beer mugs

Included are our wine glasses, vintage beer mugs, shot glasses, booze, straws and some lemons – really just because they added some happy color. If I had gin on hand I would have had some limes there as well. True story, I’m a gin drinker.

bar area

It’s kind of an ever-changing space depending on what we have on hand. If we had vodka I’d set out our cocktail shaker as well, Bailey’s, maybe some mugs. I just love how inviting it feels to have a dedicated space to keep all the goods. How do you guys organize and display your beverages?


my favorite things: april 2014

I truly enjoy sharing products that I love with you guys and because of that, I’m starting a my favorite things series. I find myself always recommending products that work for us to people, so why not share a few each month. None of these posts or products are sponsored. They’re honestly items that we use in our everyday lives that are worth sharing with others.

my favorite things april 2014

Ball Dissolvable Labels

My sister gave these labels to me a few years ago when I very first started canning. They’ve since become a product I use multiple times a week. So much of our food is made from scratch and stored in reusable containers. These making labeling easy and clean up even easier. They dissolve in water which means no wasted time trying to scrape of the gooeyness of a label or sticker.

Shoe Bags (not specifically Toms ones!)

Shoe bags. I have way too many of them, but use them regularly. Half of the ones I have I handmade, the other half are from Toms purchases. I had a total of TWELVE Toms shoe bags (I just donated some because who needs close to 20 shoe bags?!) which clearly means I have an addiction to Toms shoes. Face it, shoes are gross. So why would you want them roaming in your gym bag or suitcase next to all your clean clothes? Shoe bags solve that problem. They’re also machine washable so pretty low maintenance.

Dr. Bronner’s Castile Baby Soap

We’ve been using Dr. Bronner’s for years but just recently did we start using the mild, unscented soap that’s intended for babies. Reason being is that I have an incredible sense of smell and even the natural lavender and peppermint smells were too much for me. Dr. Bronner’s is such a universal soap but we use it as body wash, diluted a tad. It’s not harsh, no crazy, unpronounceable chemicals, no artificial dyes. For anyone interested, it was on super sale at my Whole Foods ($11.99 for the large bottle, regularly $19.99) this week. Might be worth checking your local WF too!

Ikea Tarp Bags

These bags make me so happy. I bought a couple of these a year or so ago and I will forever be in love with Ikea tarp bags. We have one of the rectangular bags and two of the large tote bags. The tote bags are perfect to use for laundry. They fold up and are stored in our linen closet and on laundry day we pull them out and separate the laundry into each bag. Takes up a whole lot less space than a laundry basket and we can easily carry two huge bags of laundry at one time.

The rectangle bag zippers all the way around, so we have one of those behind our couch storing all of our extra blankets, extra pillows and pillow cases and our air mattress. When we have guests staying with us everything is in one place, we just grab that bag and unload it. Because it’s soft sided (unlike a plastic tote or storage bin) we can squish it behind the couch, so it’s out of sight.

Stop, Breathe & Think App

This is a new app to me, I’ve had it for about four months now, but I’m really loving it. It’s a free app that asks you a handful of questions about how you’re feeling mentally, physically and what your current emotions are and then gives you your “results.” The results are different meditation exercises, and the app guides you through each. I downloaded it back when I started going through loads of more tests and doctor appointments to figure out why I’d been feeling so crappy. It was a great way for me to check in mentally and take 10 minutes to refocus my energy.

That’s it for this month! I’m going to post this series on the first of each month with a few different things that I highly recommend. If you have any products that are your go to feel free to share in the comments!

easy gluten free pancake recipe

If you haven’t noticed already, I really don’t like cooking to take up a lot of my time. I prefer simple recipes, with short ingredient lists. I also love delicious things like pancakes. These were the easiest and tastiest gluten-free pancakes I’ve ever made. We have breakfast for dinner at least once a week and with the addition of pancakes, to the normal eggs and bacon, dinner just got a whole lot tastier!

easy gluten free pancake recipe

1 egg
1c milk
1c gluten-free flour
2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
1T honey

Combine all ingredients in a large bowl. Mix well until the lumps of batter are minimized. The mixing part takes the longest because of the consistency of gluten-free flour. It’s a bit tougher, so clumps more.
breakfast for dinner gluten free pancakes
Once mixed well scoop about a half cup of batter into a warm, greased, skillet. Let cook until the batter bubbles around each pancake. Flip and cook the reverse side. Enjoy!

high five for friday!

This week flew by! After a productive weekend last week I’m hoping for another this weekend with the addition of some fun, maybe a hike, since it’s supposed to be in the 70s! Linking up today. Have a great weekend!

High Five For Friday!

  1. New running shoes! I love when things like this happen. I desperately need new running shoes and my exact ones just happened to be on Rue La La this week at a great discount. Can’t wait for them to arrive!
  2. I have a huge stack of books, plus some, waiting to be read and I can’t wait to dive into each one. I’m trying hard to make reading more a priority.
  3. Consigned a ton of clothes this week and picked up these two cute dresses while I was there. At nine dollars and change each I really couldn’t pass them up!
  4. Arrived at work on Monday to this on my desk. It was a thank you from my boss and I’m psyched. She must have heard me swearing at my paint brushes last weekend because I need new ones bad.
  5. We attended a free backpacking class at REI this week. They offer loads of classes and many are free if you’re a member, or come with a small fee. It was awesome and totally worth it!