Category Archives: Life At Home

Life Update

life update

Whoa holy makeup, batman. I had someone do my makeup for a big event a few months ago… Wow!

I thought it was time to fill you in on a little about my life.  You probably gathered from this post about quitting your job that I actually did quit my job that I had for over 5 years.  Fortunately, I found a new job in the field I want to be in.  My bosses are amazing and I am loving everything so far.

Maggie and Tiny are doing the same.  They are spoiled and would not know any other way to be.

J and I joined a local gym and have set the goal of going 3x a week.  Eventually we would like to bump that up, but for now 3x is good for us.

We also set the goal of cooking dinner at least 4x a week at home.  That will help us save some money, eat healthier, and just spend more time together.

My family has come up to visit a few times, which has been awesome.  I love my folks and getting to spend time with them is pretty much the best.

I started a new vlog series and am going to be sharing what I am thankful for each month.

I have a plan of making our breakfast each morning and so far I have been successful.  A homemade chocolate peanut butter smoothie for me and a vanilla banana smoothie for J.

We are closer to finishing one of our debts and then will be diving headfirst into paying the next one off.  We will achieve our goal of saving a down payment for our first house!

Now for some sad news… well actually it’s not that sad.  I’ve decided that I cannot keep up my blogging schedule, which explains why my blog has been pretty quiet lately.  I typically post on Monday, Tuesday, Thursday and Friday.  It is just too much.  So for now I am going to post 2-3 times per week.  I am going to aim for Monday, Wednesday and Friday but give myself Monday off if needed.  I do not need to stress about not being able to post and I think that will help the quality of my posts too.  If you have serious complaints about my new schedule, please let me know. 🙂

Makeup Free

MakeUp Free

I’ve started a new trend: I am going makeup free on a daily basis.

 Now hear me out before you gasp in disgust.  I love makeup, I always have.  I remember the first time I put on eyeliner was in the 7th grade and I fell in love with the smokey eye before it was even cool.  Then I saw some school photos of my perfect smokey eye and realized that I didn’t quite have it down yet.  But hey!  We all go through those phases.  Like the phase of wearing a t-shirt with a white lion on it back in high school.  I wore that shirt all the time and thought it was the greatest.  I think I was way ahead of the times because that shirt would total rock in today’s world, but back in 2002 it didn’t.

Anyway I am digressing.  I’ve stopped wearing makeup.  I am not one of those health nuts that thinks it’s better for my skin because honestly I haven’t noticed a difference in my skin texture at all.  I don’t think the make-up is horrible and am throwing a protest against the beauty industry because that would just be cruel!
make-up free feels good
Honestly, it’s because I am lazy. Yep, I said it.  I am going makeup free because I am lazy!  I like to sleep in late, too late most mornings.  Plus I work in an office by myself.  Tell me how much motivation you would have to dress to the nines when you sit in a chair in a brightly painted yellow room with no one to talk to.  You wouldn’t or at least the majority of you wouldn’t.

I do like to get dolled up for date nights with J or when we are going out with friends.  But for a day-to-day basis my make-up sits in its little bag on the bathroom counter.  I’m sure the eyelash curler and foundation brush are pretty lonely, but at least they have each other.  Perhaps one day I will snap out of this phase and realize that I should be wearing makeup so that I do not scare small children, but that day hasn’t come.  OR perhaps I am just getting more comfortable in my own bare skin and this phase is here to stay.

Only time will tell.

I’m Secretly Weird

secretly weirdWhen I was younger, like high school age, I would love when I would get sick and had to stay home from school. Not because I love being sick, no.  I am not that messed up. I really enjoyed having nothing to do and a reason to sleep all day. My parents were always concerned that I was trying to do too much and would get myself sick from the lack of sleep and busy lifestyle I lived.  Now if I only I could go back and just start skipping school like normal teenagers then maybe I wouldn’t have this love/hate relationship with being sick as an adult.

Nowadays it’s not easy to call in sick to the real world.  In high school all I had to do was convince my folks that I was too sick to get out of bed then send one or two texts and I was home free.  But now, oh man have the times change.  I have to wake up early because I feel that a 2 hour notice to your boss is minimal, which means I have to wake up by 6am to make that call.  Then on top of that I still have bills that need to be paid, clients at work expecting their services to be completed, documents to file and a house with a husband & 2 dogs to care for.

But yet, somehow when that first twinge of a throat ache or body aches sets on, I secretly rejoice for a brief moment.  That short-lived moment where I know that a couch, my pillow and fluffy blanket are in my immediate future.

Why am I so weird? Now I would like to clarify my sanity by saying that the brief and shining moment of “I’m getting sick! Yippee!” Quickly fades into “Crap, I don’t have time for this because I am an adult.”  Maybe one day I will be normal and hate getting sick from the beginning or, should I dare type it, be someone that goes straight to the doctor with the first sign of a throat ache.  That might be a bit too far in the opposite direction for me.

My Guilty Pleasures

I have several guilty pleasures that I partake in from time to time.  Some are a lot more embarrassing than others, but nonetheless they are indulgences.
guilty pleasure
Painting My Nails – I love having my nails nicely filed and painted.  Most days I would prefer to leave the house with my hair looking like a hot mess as long as my nails are nicely done.

Oreos – I read an article stating that Oreos could have the same effect on people’s minds as cocaine does… Who am I to argue with science?

Ghost Adventures – I almost labeled this next section as “trashy tv,” but that would be a lie.  I think I have great taste in tv shows and Ghost Adventures is one of a kind.  I’ve seen every episode and may or may not tweet live during the weekly premiere.
guilty pleasure Cuddling with my dogs – the best feeling in the world is when my two pups decide to sit on my lap over J’s or on their own couch.  No, the dogs don’t have their own couch, but we have 3 pieces of sitting furniture in our family room and since it’s just J and I, usually there are just 2 seats taken.

Dog and Beth On The Hunt – this is another questionable quality TV show that I am obsessed with.  I used to watch Dog The Bounty Hunter on A&E and was devastated when it was cancelled a couple of years ago.  I don’t miss an episode of the new show and to ensure that I don’t – my DVR is set to record each new episode.

Baking – I have to limit my baking because I will eat every.single.bite and that’s not good for a girl getting married in a few weeks.


Our Home Tour

home tour It’s been a full two months since we moved into our new home.  We have unpacked all of the boxes, hung some pictures in the main rooms, found a place for everything, and have even had some friends over for a BBQ.  This little place of ours has finally started to feel like home.  Even Maggie and Tiny are comfortable, which is apparent by the destroyed toys all over the house, their hiding spots from one another, and the obstacle course to go to the bedroom … er, I mean stairs.
home tour home tour Slowly I will give a little preview of our house.  Our office is more of a wedding storage room at the moment from all of the items that we have to take for the wedding and the wonderful gifts that we have received from our friends and family.  That room is going to take us some time to get it back into office shape.

I think the next room up will be the guest bedroom.  I do have a few more projects to get through in there and then it will be ready.  I love the idea of having a tranquil room for friends and family to stay when the visit.  I want people to visit us and I think the best way to do that is having a space ready for them at a moment’s notice.
home tour Sometimes it’s nice to sit back and just enjoy the present.


A Little Bit About Me

about me

About Me

So, here i sit trying to think of something to write about.  I have ideas, but no pictures to go with the ideas or I have pictures and have no idea what to write about.  It’s a vicious circle I live in.  As I get older (and closer to my wedding) I have been thinking a lot about who I am and how I got to be this awesome lady.  I thought there would be nothing more fun to read or talk about then a post about myself… okay, I’m really stretching it here and just need to finish a few other topics.

Here we go interesting tid-bits about yours truly:

– my first word was cookie, which is what I am blaming my food problems on
– I love black licorice so much that I named my first do Licorice.  She was a black lab, so it seemed fitting.
– I am absolutely terrified of clowns, people in face paint, masks, or fully body costumes and hate wigs.  Pretty much anything that can completely disguise how a person looks freaks me out.
– I love sweets and probably have the biggest sweet tooth known to man
– I do not like to go into our basement at night. Something about it creeps me out, perhaps it’s the glow in the dark stick-on stars that are all over our unfinished basement that screams this was a child’s playroom or bedroom; and it’s an unfinished basement
– I enjoy working around the house on projects.  When I was little I used to help my dad wire lights around our patio fence, install speakers on our back patio, etc. I am actually pretty handy

about me– My favorite dog breed is a Rottweiler. I had one growing up that would walk with me every morning to the bus stop and meet me when I was dropped off.  That dog saved me from a pretty horrible person one morning and at that moment I decided my children would have a Rottweiler to protect them just as I did
– My guilty reality tv show is Dog and Beth On the Hunt, which replaced Dog The Bounty Hunter.  A little strange, but I do love them and may have waited hours in line for their autograph at a Borders once
– My favorite color is blue and my last 2 cars have been blue
about me
– My favorite season is fall, which had something to do with why we decided to get married in November

about me– My  dream is to be able to provide a refuge for stray or neglected dogs that need a forever home


A Life Lived

Last night I had one of those down moments.  Where everything just seemed to be going wrong.  There is not enough time to get the details done, I haven’t found time to finish thank you cards for a shower, J could not do anything right, the dogs were driving me crazy, and I just needed to sleep.  It was a mountain to climb and I just did not have the strength to even try.

Those nights it is just best to call it a night and lay down to sleep.  I woke up this morning in a much better mood, realizing that things aren’t as overwhelming as I tend to make it.  Surprise!  I have a clearer outlook for today and spent time to make a list of what needs to get done.  I do love a good to-do list more than most things.

Life lately has been one big, fun ride with trips to see family, friends, and outings with some pretty fun people.  There are times when it hits me that this really is a great part of my life.  I am getting ready to marry by best my friend in less than 2 months.  Even though I get stressed out with wedding details, all the car rides for work and to see family – I am truly blessed.

Counting my blessings.

marrying J
two sweet, sweet dogs that truly love me unconditionally
a nice place to call home
a job that lets me have flexibility
great friends that have been there for me through so much
new friends that really make me feel like myself
family that has always supported me
J’s family that is there for us
the desire to be healthier and cook more at home

life lived

Life is good.


The Perfect Gallery Wall

tips for creating a gallery wall

I love a good gallery wall, they are eclectic and a good way to express my personality. Which obviously consists of a whole lot of mis-match items that when combined create something beautiful.

Now that we are FINALLY in our new place and most of the boxes are unpacked, it was time to hang some pictures.  I promised J that I would keep his beloved fish that was caught by grandpa and passed down the family.  I needed items that can balance out the fish and make it look like it belongs on the wall.  Not like I just stuck it in the corner, behind a door to say that I was good partner because it was on a wall.

create a gallery wall Here are some tips for creating a gallery wall that is perfect:

1) find pictures that are unlike each other – either having different frame types, coloring, or are pictures of landscape, sculptures, and people.
2) lay your arrangement on the floor.  Play with it and make sure you love it.  It took me awhile to get it just right.  A lot of frames came in and out of this arrangement.
gallery wall tips3) get someone’s opinion.  I asked J what he thought before  putting one nail into the wall.  Not that he actually cared what it looks like, but it was nice to have that affirmation.
4) start nailing it! We measured out the wall space to find the middle, then measured out the arrangement to find the midpoint.  Match those two up and start hanging.
5) stand in awe of your awesome gallery wall.

creating a gallery wall


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Tips to Simplify Your Life

merelynne tips to simplify your life

I am always drawn to articles, books, and readings about simplifying my life.  I run around all day like a chicken with its head cut off.  I’ve always hated that saying because I literally imagine a cartoon type chicken running around without a head in the middle of the desert.  Why the desert you might ask?  I have no idea, perhaps too many episodes of Bugs Bunny and the Road Runner as a kid.  Anyway back to what I was saying.  An article that promises to calm my life with just a few simple steps is like a magnet to my A-type personality.

I have learned through college, working, and then family life a few tricks that always work for me.  Now that I’m getting older I have found that these tricks are even listed on most of those fancy-shmancy articles.  I’d like to think I’m that smart, but it’s probably because I’ve read so many of them.

Here we go my top 5 tips to simplify your life and enjoy your life more:

1) Prioritize – sounds simple right?  You need to pick 1-3 tasks per day to complete each day.  Spend a few minutes each morning or when you arrive at your desk to think about your whole day and what all needs be accomplished.  Highlight 1-3 tasks depending on the time you have and the time you assume each one will take.

I keep a running to-do list of items at work, for my Etsy shop, for the home, and for this little blog.  I then pick 1-3 things that I need to do.  Usually the days I work I pick 1-3 to do the 8 hours I’m there and then maybe only 1 to do from home, Etsy or blog for when my work day ends.  I’m not saying pick a hobby task over your actual job – you gotta make that money, honey.

2) Pick What Makes You Happy – it is super easy to get swallowed whole by work; try not to let that happen.  Select 1-2 things each day that make you happy and fulfilled.

A few months ago I switched up my job to work at a local retailer.  Most days I would not get home until 9:30 and I realized that I missed having dinner with J.  Now I make it a point to have dinner with J every night.  Also, I chose Crossfit.  I’m new at it, it will always be challenging, but I am absolutely enthralled by it.

3) Block Out Distractions – get your environment ready to crank out your top priorities.  For me, it’s  not only turning my phone on silent but turning it over and popping in my earbuds to listen to some Pandora.

4) Just Say No – remember that drug prevention club in middle school?  Just Say No to Drugs… Okay, well maybe your school wasn’t as cool as mine, but anway you get the point.  Say no to things that are not a priority.  Keep yourself single-minded when it comes to tackling.  Don’t take on too much.

5) Breathe – I have a habit of running around like a crazy woman when I get stressed so I am still working on this one.  Every once in awhile remind yourself to breathe.  The world will still be here tomorrow even if you do not get everything done on your list.  It’s okay, be forgiving to yourself.

Now, I think this post might be more for me then it is for anyone else.  It’s a simple reminder to simplify your my life so that you I can enjoy more and stress less.


Idea-less Tuesday

Once upon a time there was this girl who had a little blog.  This girl loves to talk, share stories, and create all day long.  She loves to spend time with her two dogs, her fiance and family.  Most days this girl has no trouble coming up with stories and DIY projects or tips to share with people.  However, then there was a Tuesday where she had no idea what to talk about.  That has never happened before.

If you cannot tell this girl is me and the little blog is this one.  And I really am idea-less on what to talk about.  I thought I would share some pictures of the past few days instead of being creative.

st louis bread co

Office for the day

wedding makeup

Trial run for the wedding!

Cardinals Game

J and I at the Cards v. Cubs game.

Busch Stadium

Best view

That Thing You Do!

That Thing You Do!
One of the best movies ever made.

lazy dog