Bringing Memories to Life with YesVideo

Disclosure: I was compensated for this post. Opinions are my own and not those of any one else.

Swoon

Sometimes, it’s hard to remember the day pictured above. Even at the best of times your wedding is a blur. Add in the craziest possible pre-wedding week ever (highlights included getting roofied at my bacehlorette party, a car wreck, and a suspected appendicitis scare the day before I was to fly home), and I am kind of amazed I was even upright for mine. That’s where the wedding video comes in. Except ours were languishing on actual video. We just missed the cut off for everything being on DVD.

That’s where YesVideo comes in…
[Read more...]

Bringing the Hotel Home

Happy to have partnered with Frette, my dream sheets, on this post!

FretteSheets

So today I fly out for the Type A Conference. My husband keeps wandering around going have fun “working”, finger air quotes and all. The word vacation has also been thrown around a lot. And I have to admit that even though this is work, it is also a vacation. Because hello, hotel bed.
[Read more...]

10 Ways to Organize With Cardboard Boxes

As an Extra Space ambassador I will be sharing ways to get some extra space in your life over the next few months. Hope you enjoy these sponsored posts!

Whew, this week it finally feels like Fall! It kind of rolled in last Thursday with a wisp of wind and a bit of a chill. But by the time we were opening the garage door Saturday morning, it was chilly enough for a mug of tea and a sweater. And many, many cups of tea were consumed as we started our shift into Fall mode.

Fall is seriously my favorite time of year to clean. Spring cleaning is always a chore to me, but I love freshening up the house for Fall! Especially since I got wise a couple of years ago and actually started organizing things. Funny how that helps. Once I discovered you can order boxes from storage places, a light bulb went off. You can even call up Extra Space and they will walk you through what you need to store and let you know exactly what you need. Plus they have specialized boxes for everything!

And in case you don’t use them all, here are some of the most clever ways to organize with cardboard boxes:
[Read more...]

No Buy July

Disclosure: I am writing this post on behalf of Splash Creative Media for eBay Mobile. My kids are sending them complaint letters now.
No Buy July

Last year we did a No Buy July challenge where we tried to cut our expenses by cutting out any unnecessary spending. This year I am all in again. Because with my daughter’s surgery and the trip to Cancun we splurged on for my husband’s fortieth, the credit card bill number written on my white board is starting to haunt my dreams.

However, this is a hard month to do it. There’s BlogHer, a round trip drive to Dallas, two events I am hosting, and two dinners to be brought to friends with babies. Not much I can do about those expenses. Then my husband needed new classes. That $400 expense crushed our open income (the money we have to spend on non fixed expenses each month.) Forget trying to cut that in half (my original goal.) Instead we had reached our limit by the seventh of the month.

GAH!

Enter Ebay Mobile…
[Read more...]

Keeping Your Dog Safe This 4th of July With Made in the USA Nudges Dog Treats

Disclosure: Thank you to the Collective Bias® Social Fabric® Community and Nudges for sponsoring this post about dog safety! This shop has been compensated but my thoughts and words are my own!

Fourth of July Safety With Nudges

Thanks to Nudges’ healthy dog treats, my dog Peanut Butter is all prepped for the fourth of July!
[Read more...]

Want, Wear, Read, Need

wANT wEAR rEAD nEED 52

Want: New Sheets
Wear: Old Navy Summer Wardrobe
Read: all of Tana French‘s books
Need: yummy snacks
(This new blogging series is inspired by this SimpleKids post. This post contains affiliate links.)
[Read more...]

Monday Giveaway : Healthy Home Makeover

In honor of Earth Day, I am happy to be one of the sponsored participants in Mighty Nest’s Healthy Home Makeover.
MightyNest_Logo

About MightyNest:

Founded by two parents, MightyNest is an online store, resource center, and community dedicated to helping parents create healthy, safe homes. Their mission is to give families the ability to research, get advice, and buy natural, non-toxic products all in one place.

From kitchenware to skin care, MightyNest‘s safety experts have built the web’s broadest selection of products that are free from known toxic ingredients such as BPA, PVC, Phthalates, Lead, Melamine, Formaldehyde, Parabens, and more.

Their goal is to make people feel empowered to make changes in their lives, whether large or small.

We try to lead a pretty “green” lifestyle here in the Guavalicious Household. But there is always room for improvement! I used the Mighty Nest Healthy Home Makeover board as a jumping point for my own Pinterest board. Some of the things I want to add are cast iron pans and dryer balls. I also added a few of our longtime favorites like stackable glass bowls and the Plan Toy Solid Wood Drum.

MightyNest_PinItWinIt
Click through to enter!
[Read more...]

Earth Day Infographic Fun

realtor.com go green infographic_FINAL

Inspired? Check out the Field Guide to Green Homes.

Three Smartphone Apps That Help With Home Decorating

3 smartphone apps that help in home decorating

Every time I open a home design magazine, I fall in love with at least one room displayed on its pages. I tear it out with the full intention of looking back on it when I (finally) redo a room in my house.

Does this sound familiar? I have a folder that I keep in my magazine rack. It is stuffed full of pages I have torn out of home design magazines. There isn’t very much rhyme or reason to my “Design Ideas” folder, but I keep it anyway. I very rarely look back in this folder, but I keep it anyway. Most times, it is covered with dust, but… you guessed it… I keep it anyway.

Obviously, this is not working for me, so recently I went in search of ways I can feed my designer wannabe habit without buying magazines and without my little-used, dusty “Design Ideas” folder. As I do with many things lately, I turned to my smartphone. This little contraption must be filled with ways to save me, right? Right! Here are three smartphone apps I found to help me with my home decorating ideas.

Houzz Interior Design Ideas

Have you ever heard of Houzz? It is a website devoted to everything home (inside and out). You can get inspiration for architecture, interior design, gardens and more. They also have an app called Houzz Interior Design Ideas that is available for both the iPhone and Android smartphones. You can browse by location, style and room, and then clip your favorites to your virtual ideabook for later. You have access to design professionals and a user forum for interaction. You can download this free app on their site at the bottom of the right-hand column.

Dwell

The Dwell magazine is devoted to modern architecture and design. With the Dwell app, it brings all of the magazine’s beautiful, modern design to your smartphone. This free app consists of videos and slideshows full of the best in modern design. You can also integrate the app with Facebook and Twitter so you can share all of your favorite finds!

3D Interior Room Design

Take your two dimensional ideas and see what they will look like in 3D with this app from Udesignit. For now, the paid app ($4.79) consists of designing the surfaces of the room (walls, floors, doors, windows), but in later versions they promise to include furniture to complete your room’s look. I have a horrible time visualizing what my ideas will look like, so this app is great for me! Download the Android version here.

With these apps, I am excited that I may be able to get rid of my magazines, and possibly part with my “Design Ideas” folder. Have you tried one of these smartphone apps? What did you think?

photo credit: Johan Larsson via photopin cc

About the author: Stacey Werner is the owner and editor for Newlywed Survival, a blog aimed at helping married couples survive the first years of marriage. Topics include creating a home together, budgeting, fitness, food and relationships. Read more of Stacey’s home design posts here. Follow Newlywed Survival here: Facebook | Twitter | Pinterest | Google+

Money Talk : The %s of Spending

When we decided I would take the year off to work on Special Need Tech, I decided I needed to be more serious about our budget. Since we got married, we have always been pretty good about staying on track with savings, etc. We lived on one income until we had kids (then one of us stayed home for the first three years, so we actually were on one income.) We have always bought less house than we could afford.

But it never hurts to do a re-examination.

So I compared where we are against the percentages that are recommend by financial experts (taken from a Real Simple article):
5% = The maximum % of your take home pay you should owe in credit card debt: we’re golden here. We pay off our credit card each month
10% = The minimum % of pretax income you should save for retirement: We actually only save 3% of pre-tax income so we have a lot of room to grow. But we save over 10% of after-tax income so I am not feeling too shabby. Still, we are going to put a recent pay raise towards raising the amount of pre-tax income.
28% = The % of pretax income that should go towards housing: We spend around right at this or will once we complete our refinance to a 15 year loan. We are trying to get our house paid off by the time the girls are in college.

Overall, we are right on track!