Top 15 Dollar Tree Items to Buy

Have you visited your local Dollar Tree recently?  Angie and I realized that there are several things that we purchase there that help us to save money and we wanted to share those with you.  (This post may contain affiliate links.  This means that if you purchase a product through a link we have here in the post, we may be compensated at no cost to you.) 

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Top 3 Reasons We Recycle

Recycling has been a part of our lives for quite some time.  We are fortunate that our city works with a recycling company and supplies us with a recycling bin.  The bin is picked up every other week.  Below are the top 3 reasons we recycle.  (This post may contain affiliate links.  This means that if you purchase a product through a link we have here in the post, we may be compensated at no cost to you.) 

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Organize Your Home Office Closet

Organize Office Closet

A few years ago, one of my extra bedrooms was turned into a laundry/office and I love it.  Along with this change, the closet filled up with a lot of office supplies, crafts and other stuff until it got out of control!  I happened to find a large quality wire shelf unit still in the box out in the garage that was bought a few years back on sale.  I quickly took the measurements of the office closet and found that this nice shelving unit would fit!  I was so happy!  Not only would it get this big box OUT of the garage, but it would make my office closet more organized.  (This post may contain affiliate links.  This means that if you purchase a product through a link we have here in the post, we may be compensated at no cost to you.) 

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Happy Planner: Our New Additions

HP - Our New Additions

Angie and I have added some new additions/sections to our Happy Planners.  They help us in our daily routine and we would love to share them with you!  (This post may contain affiliate links.  This means that if you purchase a product through a link we have here in the post, we may be compensated at no cost to you.) 

Lynn’s Additions

Below I will elaborate on the three new sections I added to my Happy Planner.

HP New Tabs

  • Blog:  This section contains information for this blog such as post ideas and updates we would like to make.  I love having this because anytime I can grab my planner and record it so I don’t forget!
  • Financial:  This is where I keep my Budget Sheet and my Focused Debt Payoff Sheet.  I previously wrote posts on those, just follow the links!
  • Fitness:  Right now, I am trying to get back into a fitness routine.  I have written out the workouts I want to perform and have blank sheets of paper where I record which ones I do and what day.  I will share a new exercise log printable that can fit into the Classic Happy Planner later this week.

Angie’s Additions

I have added or expanded a couple of sections!  I am really trying to do better at meal planning and grocery shopping to cut down on how much we eat out!  Here’s what I have added:

  • Grocery/Food:  I keep my on-going grocery list and coupons in my planner… if I think of something that we need, I can add it to my list!  I also shop for my mom and daughters occasionally so it is really nice to be able to just add things to their lists as needed.  Also in this section, my “Other” section – for stores like the Dollar Tree, Sam’s, Kohl’s, etc.  I just keep a list of things we may need at these stores… this sure saves me time in the long run!  I also have my meal planning and freezer inventory in here as well!
  • Dining Out Coupons:  I have been experimenting with ways to keep restaurant coupons with me… so that I will use them! Just yesterday, we were out at lunch time and we used our Subway coupon!  This was because I had it with me and … remembered to use it! Score!
  • Christmas:  It’s not too early to add information for Christmas 2018!  I track gift ideas, made a note that I found wrapping paper super cheap after Christmas, and other things that I will need when we get there again! I did move it to the back of my planner… my favorite thing is to be able to move things as I want to!

If you haven’t tried this planner… it is definitely my favorite!  I have tried many other types of planners (see post here) but the flexibility in the Happy Planner just can’t be beat!

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DIY – Favorite “In the Wall” Cabinet

 

In Wall Cabinet

A Little History

My favorite storage cabinet is an “in the wall” cabinet built between the studs in our master bathroom!  About seven years ago, we remodeled our master bedroom and bathroom.  At that time, we had a very small bathroom with no storage.  We took out a closet and added that space to the bathroom which made it much larger.  Even though it is bigger, there isn’t floor space to add an extra cabinet for storage.  So we built a double cabinet between the studs on the interior wall between our bedroom and bathroom.  (Please note… this only works well on interior walls because of the insulation!)   (This post may contain affiliate links.  This means that if you purchase a product through a link we have here in the post, we may be compensated at no cost to you.) 

When I was planning the remodel, I knew that adding storage was a high priority!  While we had all of the sheet rock removed, we made sure the studs were placed correctly to make the cabinet.  We then purchased a “cabinet without a box” from a local cabinet company and added shelves for storage and electricity as well!

Cabinet Face Lift

Fast forward to now and we needed to give it a minor face lift on the inside of the cabinet.  The backing had come unglued in a few places and I wanted to add more shelves to one side.  We took out all of the shelves and re-glued the backing in place.  We cut new shelves from MDF board…they are approximately 4 1/2″ deep and 15″ long and there are 16 of them total.

Here is what it looked like while we were working on it:

and here it is with the new shelves in place:

In Wall Cabinet with all shelves

Even though the shelves are narrow, they are perfect for bathroom storage!  This cabinet holds a tremendous amount of bathroom necessities and doesn’t take up any floor space!  We have shown this to our friends and family…and they all want one too!

In Wall Cabinet

Stay tuned… we are going to make a cabinet similar to this at Lynn’s house very soon and we will show you the pictures of our progress!

 

 

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Christmas Reflections!

Christmas Reflections

Christmas 2017 is now a memory…and as we look forward to the New Year, I like to take a minute a write out some Christmas reflections.  I have done this for 4 years now and it is so much fun to look back at each year.  (This post may contain affiliate links.  This means that if you purchase a product through a link we have here in the post, we may be compensated at no cost to you.)  Here’s what I do:

On the evening of the 25th of December, I find a quiet place and take a minute to think through Christmas…all of the things that went really well and those that didn’t quite go as I wanted them to!  I take a piece of paper and write Christmas 2017 at the top.  I then add a header for “Things that went well” and then skip several lines and add a header that says “Things I would change”.

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How to Organize with Photo Boxes from Michael’s

At my mom group this month. we were supposed to bring our favorite thing (under $5) in order to exchange within the group. Well, my mind immediately went to Starbucks gift cards… but I figured those would be overdone. So without much further thought required, I quickly landed on my favorite organizational tool… the one and only Michael’s PHOTO BOXES!! These things are CHEAP, durable, stackable, easily labeled, then reused and relabeled! I literally use these in EVERY room of the house! I’ll take you for a tour and show you all of the different places and ways in which they can used…

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Happy Planner Convert!

Happy Planner ConvertI am an official Happy Planner Convert!  I admit it!  Angie tried to tell me just how awesome they were, but I didn’t listen.  Now, I’m here to tell you how wonderful they are and I hope you fall in love with them too!  (This post may contain affiliate links.  This means that if you purchase a product through a link we have here in the post, we may be compensated at no cost to you.)

You can revisit Angie’s post about her Happy Planner here!

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Simple Freezer/Pantry Inventory for Meal Planning

Freezer Pantry InventorySo…it’s time to meal plan… and I have no idea what is in my freezer or pantry!  I do most of my meal planning on my lunch hour… so I can’t just go to the freezer to look and see what’s there.  I started doing a very high level inventory of basic meal ideas.  I do this by looking to see what “meat” or “main course” ideas that I have on hand.  This is not a comprehensive inventory of everything in the freezer or pantry.  It is just what I have on hand that will be the “backbone” or “basis” of a meal.  (This post may contain affiliate links.  This means that if you purchase a product through a link we have here in the post, we may be compensated at no cost to you.)

I do this in three stages:  (1) Indoor Freezer, (2) Outdoor Freezer, and (3) Pantry.

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Planning Ahead for a Simple Stress Free Thanksgiving

It’s time to plan ahead for a simple stress free Thanksgiving holiday!  Lynn and I are both hosting the Thanksgiving meal at our house this year so…it’s not too early to get started…now is the time!  Let’s start by looking at these four categories:

The meal

Table decor

Seating – Table and chairs

Budget

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