Author Archive

Amy’s Notebook 11.26.14

Wednesday, November 26th, 2014

DIY-Felt-Christmas-Wreath-Pillow via An Oregon Cottage

Source: An Oregon Cottage

 

This adorable pillow knockoff had me at glue gun.

Free printable Elf on the Shelf calendar and checklist- do you do an Elf on the Shelf?

Compound butter party favors- genius.

Our ‘Mommy’ problem.

Would you ever think about a side-dish-only Thanksgiving?

When kids have too much stuff.

Wowed by this dresser makeover.

DIY Cardboard Pie Box via A Joyful Riot

Source: A Joyful Riot

 

DIY cardboard pie box- how cute is this?

Awed by this knitted gradient cowl.

Love a little faux fur detail.

13 genius tips for decorating a small space.

We’ve seen almost every single one of these- have you?

Getting back to holiday simplicity.

Sparkle confetti garland- simple and sweet.

amys_notebook

I hope you enjoyed our notebook, a collection of gathered links to DIY crafts, food projects, thrifty ways to spruce up your home, and thoughtful reads. Nothing brings me more joy then to highlight other fabulous bloggers. Follow me on Pinterest for daily inspiration!

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Make Money Organizing Your Closet

Tuesday, November 25th, 2014

Make Money Organizing Your Closet

I have never had a truly clean and organized closet until I started my fashion capsule project. Had I known that I could have been making considerable cash this whole time, I might have taken the endeavor a bit more seriously. Today I want to share with you some resources I have discovered for making money while cleaning out your closet. Not only do you have the power to make some serious cash, but you also have the opportunity to transform lives by paying it forward to charities in need.

First things first, let’s talk about my purse clean out that netted me $80! 

Make Money Organizing Your Closet

Start With Your Purses- I Made a Ton

I have a terrible habit of switching my purses and never taking time to clean them out. Not only did I find a lot of great lipsticks to wear, but I also discovered that I had a lot of credit card gift cards with small denominator amounts on them that I didn’t know what to do with. Do you know that you can transfer all of these tiny gift card amounts to an Amazon gift card with no minimum balance? I headed over to this page where you can quickly reload your balance with NO MINIMUM amount. After kicking myself for all of the cards that had been sitting there expiring, I was happy to see that I now had $80 of credit that I can use towards my shopping.

Sell The Things You Aren’t Wearing

It has been brought to my attention since minimizing my wardrobe how little I really do need and how little I really do wear. If your items are brand name and in gently used condition consider selling them to make some extra cash or to put towards wardrobe items you really would love and wear.

Here are a few resources you can check. I know there are more, but these are the ones that I am most familiar with: 

Twice

Twice- This has been my #1 resource for pulling together my capsule wardrobe, but it is also my #1 resource for selling my gently used items. Twice will send you a selling kit within 4-6 days of your request that includes a bag and prepaid postage sticker for your items. If you are really excited to just get started though, you can grab a box from your recycling and fill it up with a label you print from your computer. Once you send in your first shipment they will give you $10 of credit towards a purchase so you can buy something you really love. Here is a list of the brands that they accept. Once they make an offer you can decide if you want to accept it or not.  If you don’t like the price, you pay $4.95 for return shipping. In contrast, thredUP charges $12.00 to return your items.

Keep in mind that this is not a consignment shop so they pay you once the item is accepted. No need to wait for your items to sell.

Threadflip

Threadflip- Threadflip is a new discovery for me and I am so excited about using this for my next capsule wardrobe. Threadflip is more of an online consignment shop for your clothing so that means you get paid when your item has been sold and shipped. That being said, they charge a mere 20% commission on your items so that you can pocket 80% of the profit. 

Much like Twice, they will send you an envelope with a prepaid shipping label for your items. Once you send it to them, they will list it for you by their team of professionals, saving you the hassle of trying to photograph and style your item. There is also the option to list the items yourself if you don’t want to send the items in. For me, the profit is the same so I would much rather have their team list it for me, but that one is totally up to you.

Poshmark

Poshmark- Poshmark & Threadflip are very similar in nature and the site is one of my new favorite places to browse for items for my capsule.  It is an app available for iPad and iPhone that allows you to shop, sell, and engage with virtual closets full of pre-worn or new pieces on one simple platform.

You list the items yourself- some take their own pictures while others utilize the photos from the website of where they purchased the item. They also charge a 20% commision fee on your items allowing you to pocket 80% of your profit. 

I will say from a user perspective, despite adding my sizing and storing it, I find the site a bit like going to a high-end garage sale. You have to really scan through all of the listings and even when sizing is set, it still pulls items that are not in my size or unrelated to my searches. Since users set their own pricing, you can find some steals though and I still love the thrill of a good hunt so I am sure thrifty shoppers will be ready to embrace your gently loved clothing.

thredUP

thredUPAll of my friends have been raving about thredUP and after joining to try it for this article, I can see what the fuss is about. Not only can you clean out your closet to make money, but you can also make money on your kid’s stuff and maternity items too! As with some of the other places I have listed, you can order a bag with a prepaid shipping label to start your closet clean out. Their fashion resale professionals review your clothing and then pay up to 80% of the resale value. You can earn thredUP shopping credit, or simply cash out with PayPal. Items that they don’t accept go to charitable partners or textile recycling companies. They can also be mailed back to you as part of their Return Assurance program for a $12.99 shipping fee. Be sure to check their quality standards before sending. Here is $10 of credit to spend on your first purchase. 

eBay- eBay has been around forever and is actually featured a lot in my It’s the 3 Little Things because I find some really killer deals on there as a buyer.  Although I have never personally sold items on eBay, I have had many friends who have with great success. There is a seller fee that you can read more about the eBay seller fees here. The nice thing is that you can sell items individually or you can sell them as a lot grouping instead.

Make Money Organizing Your Closet

Give Away The Rest

If you don’t love it, you aren’t wearing it, and you can’t sell it…share it with someone in need. There are so many fantastic charities to give to and if the items aren’t the wildly popular name brands or you just don’t want to hassle with the sale, consider paying it forward and giving your items to a worthwhile cause.

Here are a few options to consider:

Women’s Shelters- By far my favorite place to donate is to our local women’s shelters. This link helps you browse your state and find a shelter closest to you to give.

Dress For Success- Help someone look and feel their best for their job interviews. Their greatest need is larger size suits and apparel, but any business attire will do! Check here for locations.

Pick Up Please- The Vietnam Veterans of America is a respected charity that gives aid to all of America’s veterans, not just those of a particular age group or war. By donating used clothes, shoes, appliances, and other household items, you help generate funds to take care of the soldiers and service men and women who help keep America safe from harm. See if your state participates by visiting here.

Churches- Growing up our church had a room where guests or members could shop. Check with your church to see if they offer this or if they are partnered with any shelters in town where they could recommend sharing your donation.

Goodwill- Goodwill provides employment and job training to those in need of job assistance. Donations couldn’t be easier thanks to the drop-off boxes. Check here for locations.

Once you have your closet cleaned out, let’s get it organized!

Try a Capsule Wardrobe (here are my Fall & Winter capsules) to Minimize- Read more about what I have learned from minimizing my closet.

Tips & Tools for Organizing Your Closet

Have you made money selling items in your closet? Leave your experience here with the different services and be sure to share any resources that I might have missed!

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Apron Full of Giveaways 11.25.14

Tuesday, November 25th, 2014

Retro Apron via Etsy

Source: Rosie Ann Shop,  $35.45

 

Welcome to our Apron Full of Giveaways! I hope everyone is having a great week this week! As we do each week, here is our round-up of giveaways for our readers. We hope that this is beneficial to you and your family! Please let us know if you guys win anything- I love to hear the success stories!

Below are the contest links-if you are hosting a contest please link it up below. Sorry, we are not giving away the aprons just showcasing them! Please put your site name and then what type of contest you are hosting. For example, “MomAdvice (Kid’s Movies).”

Good luck to each of you!

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Eating Well During the Holidays: Light Cranberry Bar Recipe

Monday, November 24th, 2014

*This post is sponsored by Celestial Seasonings. All thoughts and opinions are my own.

I am very passionate about good nutrition and a healthy lifestyle. You may not know that I actually went to school to study to be a dietician so I could help others eat and live better too. Although I never dreamed this would be my job, I am thankful for that background when putting together recipes for our site. I have come a long way over the years toward living a healthier lifestyle. I actually starting eating better because my body was indicating to me that something just wasn’t right after discovering I have a sensitivity to gluten. The other reason is how much better I feel when I eat well and exercise.

Today I am partnering with Celestial Seasoning Tea to share some ways that I try to stay on track for the holidays. You may not have considered tea a delicious (and healthy!) holiday indulgence, but they actually have 8 holiday offerings that include my new favorite Sweet Harvest Pumpkin Black Tea, Cranberry Vanilla Wonderland Herbal Tea, and Caramel Apple Dream that would all be lovely offerings for a post Thanksgiving feast treat.

Looking to stay on track for the holidays? Try these ideas!

Eating Well During the Holidays

Get in a Good Walk Before or After Your Feast

As you know I am absolutely obsessed with my Fitbit and we even shared a great way you can glam it up for the holidays.  Tracking my steps each day has been a great reminder to keep active and moving throughout the day. Whether you have a Fitbit, a pedometer, or use an app on your cell phone, try making a step goal for the day and get your steps in before or after your holiday feasts.

Many gyms offer a modified schedule for holidays for die-hard exercise enthusiasts (or just those of us who want to indulge in an extra slice or two of pie). Consider tackling a class in the morning, challenging your family to a game of flag football after your feast, or taking a family walk together after your dessert.
Eating Well During the Holidays

Eat Before You Eat

Since I have to be careful about what I eat for dietary reasons, I often eat before I head to a gathering because I know that many of the foods offered will leave me sick and feeling lethargic.  Consider indulging in a healthy meal or snack before heading out to your holiday gatherings that will help fill you up on the good stuff and give your stomach less room to indulge.

I like to keep a bag of spinach and roasted chicken or roasted turkey in my fridge for a quick salad with a few vegetable or fruit additions from the crisper drawer. Having a few items like these on hand during the holiday season will help you to eat healthy between the rush of holiday errands and gatherings. I have never regretted the time spent chopping and preparing my DIY salad bar for busy weeks.

Offer To Bring a Dish

I always offer to bring a dish to family gatherings that I know that I can eat and snack on. Opt for healthy options like a vegetable tray for snacking with a low-calorie dip or a fruit salad that can be a dessert replacement. Consider a lightened up holiday recipe as a dish to bring like these delicious Cranberry-Oatmeal Bars that can be enjoyed without the guilt.

Instead of coffee drowning in creamer opt to enjoy this sweet dessert with a tea that compliments it well. For these bars, I recommend the Cranberry Vanilla Wonderland Herbal Tea or, another one of my personal favorites, Gingerbread Spice.

Light Gluten-Free Cranberry Bars

Indulge Moderately

Even I can’t shy away from the dessert table around the holidays, but there are definitely fun, light desserts you can share in lieu of the calorie-laden pie.  To inspire you, here is a delicious Cranberry-Oatmeal Bar you can make for a sweet treat to enjoy with your cup of tea. May I recommend the Celestial Seasonings Cranberry Vanilla Wonderland Herbal Tea as an accompaniment?  It is a perfect pairing!  The best part, each bar is only 133 calories and has just 4.6 grams of fat.

Light Gluten-Free Cranberry Bars

Eating Well During the Holidays: Light Cranberry Bar Recipe
Author: 
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 24
 
A lighter dessert option for the holiday season best paired with a cup of tea.
Ingredients
  • 1 cup gluten-free flour
  • 1 cup gluten-free quick-cooking oats
  • ½ cup packed brown sugar $
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • ¼ teaspoon baking soda
  • ¼ teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 6 tablespoons butter, melted
  • 3 tablespoons orange juice
  • Cooking spray
  • FILLING: 1⅓ cups dried cranberries (about 6 ounces) $
  • ¾ cup sour cream
  • ½ cup granulated sugar
  • 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • ½ teaspoon grated orange rind
  • 1 large egg white, lightly beaten
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 325°.
  2. To prepare crust, weigh or lightly spoon flour into a dry measuring cup; level with a knife. Combine flour and next 5 ingredients (through cinnamon) in a medium bowl, stirring well with a whisk. Drizzle butter and juice over flour mixture, stirring until moistened (mixture will be crumbly). Reserve ½ cup oat mixture. Press remaining oat mixture into the bottom of an 11 x 7-inch baking dish coated with cooking spray using the bottom of a measuring cup to create a cohesive crust.
  3. To prepare filling, combine cranberries, sour cream, granulated sugar, and remaining ingredients in a medium bowl, stirring well. Spread cranberry mixture over prepared crust; sprinkle reserved oat mixture evenly over filling.
  4. Bake at 325° for 40 minutes or until edges are golden. Cool completely in pan on a wire rack.

 

*This post is sponsored by Celestial Seasonings. All thoughts and opinions are my own.

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It’s the 3 Little Things: Magicbox, Chipotle Really Fast, & Blanket Scarf Heaven

Friday, November 21st, 2014

It's the 3 Little Things

Happy Friday, friends! I hope you are having a good week!  I am so excited for tomorrow because I get to dig into my new fashion capsule. I have so many cozy sweaters for this one and, boy, does a girl need a cozy sweater in the Midwest.  I am just finishing up this lovely book (I can’t put it down!!! Have you read it?), listening to this book on audio, and this book with my husband over vino in the evenings. This is the first time I have tried working on three books simultaneously. It’s not confusing at all. Nope.

Here is my happiest of lists this week!

Magicbox Magicbox Speaker

Can you believe I had never purchased a speaker for my iPad/iPhone listening? I can be quite the cheapskate. Since I am getting addicted to audio books while I tidy the house/tackle my laundry piles and my latest obsession with Serial (did you hear episode 9?! Any thoughts on who did it?)  I decided it was time to get a speaker. I bought the Magicbox Speaker after reading all of the reviews and I love this little guy so much. It is Bluetooth-enabled so it can connect with your device and charges with a little USB cable that it comes with. The sound is really good- not Sonos quality, but really perfect for my laundry needs. I am one happy girl now that I don’t have to hold my phone to my ear to keep up with all my stories.

Blanket Scarf

Blanket Scarf Heaven

Since the temperatures have been so brutally cold here, I am really loving my blanket scarfs I made for myself this week. It feels weird to not be knitting scarves this year, but also a little liberating. I started a new poncho and I think that is going to be occupying my knitting time for awhile. I have been wearing these around the house as wraps when I get chilly and am so addicted to making these, I just might have to make a few more. No-sew crafting definitely makes this girl happy.

Chipotle Fast Food

Chipotle FAST & a Runner

I have been really busy here behind-the-scenes working on our bedroom reveal. My project ran into a snafu this week that I don’t want to talk about (this is a happy list, after all!) so it has been a busy week with me and a couple of paint brushes. Since I am gluten-free it is hard to find really good food that I can eat that doesn’t cost a fortune when I can’t make dinner. I have become a big fan of Chipotle for our family for those busy nights and discovering their online ordering process has made my week. We have our whole family set up with each of their orders in our account and it saves it for us. This makes it easy on my husband when I say, “Can you help me tonight and pick up dinner?” DONE.  The best part? SKIPPING THE LINE. Just go right to the front and grab it. If that doesn’t change your life, I don’t know what will.  I also am a proud owner of one tween boy who is a fantastic runner for me and runs in to pick up my order when it is ready. I love this kid to pieces especially when he brings me an orange soda.

Three Things I Wore From My Fashion Capsule (last week in my Fall capsule- aren’t you proud of me?).  Did you read what I am learning from this project? You must!  Grab more inspiration on my Fashion Capsule Pin Board and minimize that wardrobe!

all black + blanket scarf

Seamless Perfection Long Sleeve Tunic Dress in Black (purchased- Flourish Boutique)/The Essential Leggings in Black (owned- Flourish Boutique)/ Plaid Blanket Scarf (make one here!)/Brown Boots (6PM- Naturalizer)/Frames (Coastal)

stripes + chambray + black jeans + black boots

H&M Black & White Striped Top (owned- Goodwill)/Chambray Shirt (owned- Flourish Boutique)/Old Navy Rock Star Skinny Jeans in Black (owned- Old Navy)/Black Boots (6PM- Naturalizer)/Chevron Necklace (Charming Charlie)

LBD styling

Girl’s Night Out: Little Black Dress (owned- Flourish Boutique)/ Rosette Belt  (owned- Flourish Boutique)/Black Tights/ Heeled Black Boots (6PM- Naturalizer)/ Red Clutch (Francesca’s)/Gold & Black Bracelet (Forever 21)

LBD Styling 2 Ways

See this? SAME DRESS! I just wanted to show you how far I have come with my first capsule wardrobe. I felt like the woman on this one!

3 Things YOU Loved This Week (you, lover of MomAdvice things, you!)

9 Ways to Spice Up a Goodwill Lamp

Gluten-Free Orange Chicken

Easy 4-Row Snowflake Scarf

Bonus Happy! Anybody else half as excited as me?!?

*this post may contain affiliate links- I only recommend what I love though. Check out past editions of It’s the 3 Little Things!

Now it’s your turn! What’s making you happy this week?

Freebie Friday November 21, 2014

Friday, November 21st, 2014

freebie friday Happy Freebie Friday, everyone! We would like to thank Couponing 101 for assisting us with our freebies each week for loads of deals, savings, and freebies!

This week on MomAdvice Kelly Whalen is sharing her last feature for us all about the new retirement – you’ll want to check this out, it’s full of great info! I’m also sharing how to make a blanket scarf, which I’m totally excited about – you can save a ton of money on this quick and easy craft, and it would make a terrific gift! On this week’s edition of  It’s the 3 Little Things I’m sharing what’s making me happy and hope you’ll share yours, too!

Our regular feature,  Amy’s Notebook, is of course filled with lots of inspiring DIY, food, decorating and craft ideas, and be sure to check out all the contests you can enter on our weekly round-up of great giveaways!

Have a great weekend, everyone!

Health & Beauty

Nivea Lotion Sample
Sensodyne Toothpaste Sample (Costco members)
Tums Chewable Tablets Sample (Costco members)

Entertainment

Audiobook download of Unglued: Making Wise Choices in the Midst of Raw Emotions by Lysa TerKeurst
Christmas Baking Recipes ebook
More Than Things: A Children’s Book About Gifts ebook
Peter, Peter Pumpkin Eater Printable Pack
Thanksgiving Math Printable Pack
Pillsbury Calendar (for current members)

This Week’s Freebie Events

November 21 - 27

22nd - Half Price Books: Enjoy storytime and take home a free children’s boo, 1 pm

22nd - Lakeshore Learning: Create a Giving Thanks Centerpiece, 11 am – 3 pm

22nd - Toys “R” Us: Build an amazing winter city scene with Lego bricks, 12 pm – 4 pm

 

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Amy’s Notebook 11.19.14

Wednesday, November 19th, 2014

Thankful Printable Placemat via Ella Claire

Source: Ella Claire

 

A thankful printable placemat- how perfect.

20 stores that refuse to open on Thanksgiving- do you shop them?

Recipes for a gluten-free, grain-free, sugar-free holiday feast.

Have you tried making bread in the slow cooker?

A typeface designed to help dyslexics read- so awesome!

Have you visited any of these 10 intriguing small towns everyone should visit?

I love a good stripe project.

How can you not help when you read these?

Africa without Ebola via Washington Post

Source: Washington Post

 

The Africa without Ebola is eye-opening.

Do you know the 5 life stages of a roast chicken?

11 jobs where an honest day’s work earns you…poverty.

Finding a uniform- could you do it?

5 fun & creative ways to wrap small gifts.

15 quick and easy productivity super-hacks for busy bloggers.

The top 12 weekend habits of highly successful people.

amys_notebook

I hope you enjoyed our notebook, a collection of gathered links to DIY crafts, food projects, thrifty ways to spruce up your home, and thoughtful reads. Nothing brings me more joy then to highlight other fabulous bloggers. Follow me on Pinterest for daily inspiration!

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How to Make a Blanket Scarf

Tuesday, November 18th, 2014

How to Make a Blanket Scarf from MomAdvice.com

I am madly in love with blanket scarves. My obsession started as all good obsessions do. It began on Pinterest. All of these fabulously fashionable women were rocking these gorgeous scarves, but they were out of my price range or lacked the fullness & beauty that was captured online. I decided I wanted to make some for my minimalist wardrobe because it would add so much. Did you know you can make a blanket scarf with no sewing skills required?

Let’s begin by taking a peek at the coveted $44 Zara scarf (that sells out in minutes, not kidding).  I want to zoom on in it so we can take a closer look.

Zara Blanket Scarf

The thing I want you to see is that the edges are frayed on their version too. Guess what? You can achieve that with a little flannel and pulling. The best part is that this version will cost you quite a bit less than $44. I am going to make a big stack of them to show you and then I am going to show you some fun ways to tie them.

How to Make a Blanket Scarf from MomAdvice.com

The first thing you will need to do is shop for your fabric which is so much fun. I went to a few shops to check out fabric and ended up finding it at Jo-Ann Fabrics.  Head over here (a great coupon affiliate of mine!) and check to see if flannel fabrics are on sale. If not, that same link will provide you a 40% off coupon. You will DEFINITELY want to use this because it makes these scarves budget-friendly. Don’t forget your coupons.

Head over the Fashion Flannel…at least that’s what they call it in Mishawaka (oh-la-la!). Select your favorite patterns,tell them the amount you need, have them tell you they don’t have that much on a bolt, go grab another one, try again… Be annoyed. Decide to do two sizes because you want you what you want, that’s why you brought it up there. Got it?

I am going to show you what a 2 yard scarf looks like and then I am going to show you what a 2.5 yard scarf looks like below. I love them both for different reasons and what you can do with them. The price (with no sales or coupons) is $8.99 per yard. That’s why it is great to see the two version (for cost-savings) and also really great to bring a coupon to save a bit on the fabric.

I wouldn’t recommend anything more than that or your scarf will choke you and you will die from scarf blanket suffocation. It will be all over the headlines. They will be laughing at you in those ridiculous segments on the radio where they try to shock you at the stupidity of Americans.  Your family will miss you. It would all be very tragic.

How to Make a Blanket Scarf from MomAdvice.com

How to Make a Blanket Scarf

1. Purchase 2-2.5 yards of flannel fabric.

2. Using the patterned flannel edge as a guide, trim the edges of each side of your scarf.

3. Grab the loose threads on the side and pull them down gently, fraying the edges of the scarf. Keep doing this until there are no loose threads and you have a beautifully frayed edge. Repeat on each side of the scarf. DONE!

How to Make a Blanket Scarf from MomAdvice.com

This is what TWO YARDS of fabric looks like. You can see that it has a lot of fullness, but is not as long or as much to tie or knot around. Do you want to see how to tie it to look like this? Okay then.

How to Tie a Blanket Scarf from MomAdvice.com

How to Tie Your Two Yard Blanket Scarf

1. Fold the scarf in half, lining the edges up evenly.

2. Make sure one end is shorter than the other and tuck it up over your shoulder.

3. Loop around once with the long end (or possibly twice depending on your neck size!).

4. Fluff and puff. Fluff and puff.

how-to-make-a-blanket-scarf-9

How to Make a Blanket Scarf from MomAdvice.com

Here is the same size, just not puffed up so much. Seriously, cute stuff!

How to Make a Blanket Scarf from MomAdvice.com

How to Tie Your 2.5 Yard Blanket Scarf

No need to reinvent the wheel…I just headed online to figure out a couple of fun ways to tie these longer blanket scarves. I tried this braided technique on Classy Sassy and really loved it. It is a little more complex than the one above, but it adds a beautiful detail to the styling.

How to Make a Blanket Scarf from MomAdvice.com

This half-tied technique couldn’t be easier and was a cinch to pull together and added just the right amount of fullness to the neckline.

How to Make a Blanket Scarf from MomAdvice.com

Here are a few other blanket scarf techniques I am looking forward to trying!

This one is similar to the half-tied technique, but no tying, just tucking. I can do that!

This chunky scarf technique would work really well with a 2-yard scarf so you could let the ends hang.

The 2.5-yard one would look great as a poncho or even pulled together with a belt.

This poncho style leaves the scarf folded making a smaller poncho version.

How to Make a Blanket Scarf from MomAdvice.com

I’m Petite & Want to Make a Smaller Version- What Can I Do?

I’m pretty petite, but I know big scarves aren’t for everyone!  Shave 6-7 inches off the width on a 2 yard version to make a more petite version of this scarf with a little less bulk or experiment with your own sizing by creating your own custom version. Just cut, try on, adjust. There are no wrong or right lengths- it is what fits YOU or your recipient best!

I hope you have a blast making these quick scarves for yourself or for holiday gift-giving. Check out this list of 54 handmade gifts you can make for the holiday season to inspire you even more! Happy crafting!

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Apron Full of Giveaways 11.18.14

Tuesday, November 18th, 2014

Cross-Back Denim Apron via Etsy

Source: Larklin,  $64.26

 

Welcome to our Apron Full of Giveaways! I hope everyone is having a great week this week! As we do each week, here is our round-up of giveaways for our readers. We hope that this is beneficial to you and your family! Please let us know if you guys win anything- I love to hear the success stories!

Below are the contest links-if you are hosting a contest please link it up below. Sorry, we are not giving away the aprons just showcasing them! Please put your site name and then what type of contest you are hosting. For example, “MomAdvice (Kid’s Movies).”

Good luck to each of you!

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It’s the 3 Little Things: Podcast Binge, A Classic, & Friendsgiving

Friday, November 14th, 2014

It's the 3 Little Things

I’m sorry I am coming out with this a little late today. I was at my real-life book club discussing this amazing book this morning. I hope your weekend is off to a lovely start over there too!

Here is what is making me happy this week!

A Charlie Brown Christmas Record

A Charlie Brown Christmas Album

Yes, I am one THOSE people that listens to Christmas music waayyy too early and I don’t care what you think about it. We purchased  A Charlie Brown Christmas Album at Urban Outfitters in the collector’s edition red for our Christmas vinyl collection. I was preparing a holiday feast this week (more about that in a few) and listened to this while I got ready. I openly admit that I was pretty teary-eyed while listening to it over my coffee. There is something magical about hearing this album and hearing it on vinyl is like the twinkle lights on the whole affair.  I may have listened to it six times over the course of the day and I loved every moment of it.

Serial Podcast

Serial Podcast

Have you heard of Serial? My girlfriend shared it with me and I started listening in and I quickly became a Serial addict. This podcast, from the producers of This American Life (another addiction of mine) is about the murder of Hae Min Lee, who disappeared in 1999 when she was a senior at Woodlawn High School in Baltimore County, Maryland. She was found strangled to death in a city park about a month later. Her ex-boyfriend, a fellow Woodlawn student named Adnan Syed, was convicted of killing her and sentenced to life in prison. He says he didn’t do it and Sarah Koenig is trying to figure out if he did it or not by interviewing the previous witnesses and piecing together all of the clues from the case that was established against Adnan. You can even view all of the evidence online- it is really incredible.

When I was a kid my parents watched Unsolved Mysteries and it reminds me of that except you get to feel like a detective as you analyze the clues on the site and listen to the interviews with a convicted murderer who says that he did not do it. There is a bit of controversy surrounding this podcast, but I hope it doesn’t overshadow the brilliance of this show and the idea behind it. I am hooked and I think you will be too.

Friendsgiving

Friendsgiving

Truth be told, I am a little late to the 3 Little Things game because of all the fun I had last night with my girlfriends. Did you see that I hosted my first Friendsgiving Feast? It was so much fun that I plan to do it every year for my girlfriends. I couldn’t have been happier to open my home to such a great group and writing that check today to provide 187 people a turkey dinner too is the icing on the cake. I feel so blessed to know these women and to share a meal with them, when our lives have become so busy, is a precious gift.

Three Things I Wore From My Fashion Capsule.  It’s my last week in my first capsule- I am SO PROUD. Did you catch my next capsule reveal? I hope you can join in on the fun!

pinstripes + big belt + rolled black jeans + driving moccasins

 

White House Black Market Blue Striped Collared Top (purchased second hand on Twice)/Old Navy Rock Star Skinny Jeans in Black (owned- Old Navy)/Belt (FOUND when I cleaned out my closet!)/Leather Driving Moccasins (owned- Target)

maxi skirt + tassel necklace + jean jacket + booties

The Must-Have Maxi in Burgundy (purchased- Flourish Boutique)/Not Afraid of the Dark Denim Jacket (purchased- Flourish Boutique)/Suede Booties (Old Navy)/ Tassel Necklace (owned- Groopdealz)

white shirt + rolled black jeans + camel booties + statement necklace

Converse White Collared Shirt (purchased- Target) (owned- Target)/ Old Navy Rock Star Skinny Jeans in Black (owned- Old Navy)/ Fitbit Cuff (handmade- read here!)/Mustard Beads (owned- Goodwill)/ Camel Suede Booties (Madden Girl- DSW Shoes)

3 Things YOU Loved This Week (you, lover of MomAdvice things, you!)

Quick & Easy Knitted Boot Cuffs

Homemade Peppermint Mocha Recipe

How to Make Quinoa in the Rice Cooker

*this post may contain affiliate links- I only recommend what I love though. Check out past editions of It’s the 3 Little Things!

Now it’s your turn! What’s making you happy this week?