Monday, September 21, 2009


So - many people know that I love mail and how I think envelopes hold little nuggets of joy.  And in an effort to trim the budget, I am turning to the genius of envelopes.  It's a simple method (and I guess it came from Dave Ramsey, but I have no idea about his financial advice...) and really helps keep a lid on things.

In a nutshell, the envelope system is simply putting aside cash (in an envelope) for budgeted expenditures.  My grocery money??  It has it's own envelope and whatever is in the envelope has to stretch for the month.  Clothing money?? Same thing... it arrives on the first of the month in an envelope and that's all I get.  When it's gone- it's gone.

It's amazing to see how much you can save by forcing yourself to stick to a budget like this.  We made an excel sheet and seeing the numbers made it all the more motivating.  The systems starts in October- wish me luck!

Monday, September 14, 2009


When I was a junior in high school, my family spent spring break in NYC. One of my mom and I's outings was to Trish McEvoy's original office (in her hubby's derm office) to get our make-up done. I remember being wonderfully amazed. Unlike the typical woman behind the Clinque office, this woman doing my makeup was as artist. She actually knew what she was doing and as a client, I learned much from her.

Besides the make-up, my mom bought me a set of TM's make-up brushes. I remember thinking, "wow- that's kind of expensive for an eye shadow brush... I just use the little q-tip like thing in my old make-up". The woman explained to me that the brushes were an investment... they are wonderful, high-end tools that if maintained properly would last more than 10 years.

As I was cleaning the house the past few days, I came across my make-up brushes. Sure enough, they've lasted for over 10 years. Purchased at 17, they are still in wonderful condition. I clean them religiously and store them properly... who knows how long I'll have them!!

I just love products like this... wonderfully made and that stands the test of time. Sure, I have to give my brushes a bath every few months. But for me, that's a small cost.

Saturday, September 12, 2009

Totally Gross

And this is why it's vitally important to deep clean:

This is underneath my oven... three crayons, one pencil, two marbles, one Barie toy syringe, one hair band, some purple thing, 40 cents, and years of dust. Apparrently the family here before us had a girl and never took the time to deep clean :)

It feels good to know all of that stuff isn't lurking under my oven anymore.

Friday, September 11, 2009

Fall Cleaning

So, Matt is away in Boston visiting some high school friends for the weekend. That means I'm cleaning the house. But it's not just cleaning: I'm super-dee-duper cleaning for fall!! And honestly, it's the perfect day for it... pouring rain, wind, and grey skies.

When I sat down to make a room-by-room list of everything I needed to do for this, I was overwhelmed, to say the least. But, I finally checked out Fly Lady and she has a pretty good list. I'm a fan of Fly Lady because she's real and is very encouraging in the home making department. I know she is a bit over the top sometimes (getting dressed to the shoes??) and her style is by no means practical for everyone, but overall she's a winner

Here is her list for doing a detailed cleaning of your home:
The List

Now, there are things I'm adding because I'm viewing this cleaning journey like spring cleaning in the fall. I'll be washing pillows, wiping walls, and cleaning behind the fridge, too.

Happy cleaning!