Real Christmas Tree Tips With Evergreen Elf

This post is brought to you by Evergreen Elf. To save $3 on your Evergreen Elf purchase use coupon code HomemakingElf03.

Christmas Tree Safety

If you have a real Christmas tree you know all about how important it is to keep your tree watered to avoid house fires.  There’s nothing more important than keeping your family safe!  However, we have a few tips that you may not have heard of before and might help give you a little more peace of mind this holiday season.

Real Christmas Tree Tips:

  •  –  Find a stand that adjusts to fit your tree. While it’s tempting to carve down the sides of the tree trunk to fit a stand that could be detrimental.  The outer layers of wood are the most efficient in drinking up the water that therefore shouldn’t be removed.
  •  –  If you bought a pre-cut tree, you’ll want to cut an inch or so off the bottom of the tree when you get home.  It sounds strange but the reason is that sap in the tree will start seeping out and sealing over the base of the trunk which will hinder it’s ability to absorb water.  If you live near your preferred tree farm the shop owner may make the cut for you if you ask them.
  • –  As a general rule, stands should provide 1 quart of water per inch of stem diameter.
  • –  The temperature of the water doesn’t affect absorbency and drilling holes in the trunk won’t help your tree drink more.
  • –  Use an Evergreen Elf to warn you of low water.  Make sure the end of your Evergreen Elf is at the bottom of the tree trunk and not at the bottom of the pot.  It’s possible to have water in your base without having water touching your tree trunk.

The Evergreen Elf is a handy little guy that will flash red to warn you of low water plus it will also warn you audibly.  Check out this video my daughter made to help promote the Evergreen Elf.  She is a fabulous little ambassador for the brand.  As soon as she heard about the product she loved it.  She has told everyone she knows about it and has encouraged those with artificial trees to get real ones because, in her words, “the Evergreen Elf will help you be safe.”  She took it to school with her to talk about for her weekly presentation.  I hope you like her video!

Evergreen Elf

Here’s the green light to indicate there is water in the base.  It doesn’t say anything audible for this.

Evergreen Elf Tree Water Monitor

This is the red light that flashes and he repeats “Out of water, out of water” roughly about every thirty seconds.  A yellow light flashes when the battery is dead.

Check out all the different positions the Evergreen Elf can take.  He can be at the top of the pole, the bottom of the pole, and anywhere in between.  The Elf can tip out or stand straight up.  No matter what size tree stand you have the Evergreen Elf will work for you.


Evergreen Elf Christmas Trees

I hope you’ll have a wonderful and safe holiday season!  If you’d like to get an Evergreen Elf for your tree be sure and use coupon code HomemakingElf03 to save $3 on your purchase.

Hide TV Cords with Legrand In-Wall Power Kit From Best Buy

The reviewer has been compensated in the form of a Best Buy Gift Card and/or received the product/service at a reduced price or for free.

Legrand in wall kit

If you’ve followed my blog for a while you know that we moved last year and we’re still making this home our own.  We’ve moved walls, redone the floors, painted and painted and painted everything, and we’re currently working on adding trim to the baseboards.  One of the projects on my husband’s to-do list is to install our TV on the wall.  Currently, it’s setting alone on the TV stand.  While it does have suction cups on the bottom of it I still worry that something could happen and it fall on one of the children.  Ugh, I don’t think I could live with that.  That’s why I’m glad Best Buy emailed me about the Legrand In-Wall Power Kit.  It houses the cords in the wall so they won’t be dangling down.  Doesn’t that sound amazing!?  It’s like it’s just floating there on the wall.

I responded to Best Buy before consulting with my husband and as it turns out that that wall we built, where the TV will one day live, is made with extra dry wall and super thick sound proofing insulation.  That won’t be a problem, but we’ll just have to wiggle the insulation around to feed the tube and that seems like a project that’s going to require my husband’s assistance.  Any project that requires me to think and I can’t just follow step by step instructions isn’t a project for me when the kids are around.  I don’t have good problem solving skills with little ones running around me. 🙂  This should be an easy peasy project for my husband once he gets the time off from work to do it.

The Legrand In-Wall Power Kit Includes:

  • Power grommets, 54″ power harness, 6′ power cord, fish tape
  • Hole saw, hole saw handle

Here’s the step by step instructions:

 

  • –  Before you do anything measure your TV plug width.  This is designed for most TV plugs up to 1.13″ wide.  By the way, this casing is paintable for a perfectly customized look. I just love that!
  • –  Then you’ll want to locate where your electrical cords are located and avoid those.
  • –  Next, cut a hole in your drywall where you want the TV to go.  The Legrand In-Wall Power Kit comes with a tool to cut the perfect hole.  No worries there!  If you’re drilling into a wall with insulation, simply move it to the side when you insert the wires.
  • –  Cut the hole where you want the power cord to go below.
  • –  Once you have the hole cut you can feed the cord through the top hole to the lower hole with the power plugin. The Legrand In-Wall Power Kit comes with a hook that you can feed up from the bottom hole to pull the power cord down in the right place.
  • –  All that’s left to do is to screw in the front plate it puts tabs along the side of it to hold it onto the wall. This will hold it in securely so you don’t have to worry about it falling out or being pulled out.

Legrand Flat Screen TV Kit

I hope that helps give you an idea of how to install it but here’s a video from Best Buy that will show you exactly how easy it is to install the Legrand In-Wall TV Power Kit.  I’ll come back and give you an update once our TV is on the wall.

If TV cords have been driving you insane or you’re worried about a tipping TV, head over to your local Best Buy and pick up the Legrand In-Wall TV kit! You can also find out more info and order it on BestBuy.com.

 

Home Decorating With Pantone’s Color of the Year – Greenery

It’s already 2017 (can you believe it?) and the ICYMI has recently named “Greenery” the official Color of the Year.  What do you think of the new color?  It seems to be catching on and making it’s way into beauty, fashion and into, my favorite area, home décor.

The director of the Pantone Color Institute, Leatrice Eiseman says,”The tangy yellow-green speaks to our desire to express, explore, experiment and reinvent, imparting a sense of buoyancy.”  While I think it’s a fun color worthy of playing around with it’s not something I want to deck my house out in.  I just got rid of a bathroom set and stove that had a very similar green color to them.  Actually, come to think of it, our homeschool room/office already has carpet that’s this color.  Does it still count as stylish if it’s from the 70s?  Well, anyway, I’m here to share a few ways you can add a fun pop of color with Pantone’s new greenery.  This post contains some affiliate links.

Ikea Greenery Picture1.  Olunda Picture Frame – Available at Ikea, $30

 

Greenery Notebook

2.  Notebook – Available at Amazon, $5

 

Century Green Vase

3.  Century Green Vase – Available at CB2, $40

 

Green Dutch Oven

4.  Cooks Enameled Cast Iron Dutch Oven – Available at Amazon, $65

 

Green Glasses

5.  Green Glass Tumblers – Available at Amazon, $33

 

Greenery Pillow

6.  Surya Cranmore Floral Throw Pillow – Available at Target, starting at $35

 

Green Chalkboard Decals

7.  Set of 2 Green Chalkboard Decals – Available at Land of Nod, $13

 

Green Ruffle Pillow

8.  Ruffle Throw Pillow – Available at Land of Nod, $8 (originally $24)

 

Birch Lane Kids Lamp

9.  Birch Lane Gourd Geous Lamp – Available at Wayfair, $67

 

Moroccan Trellis Green Rug

10.  Moroccan Trellis Rug – Available at Amazon, starting at $30

That’s all I have!  I tried to only list things I would actually enjoy owning and wouldn’t break the bank.  Several of the things I listed were even on sale.  That ruffle pillow from the Land of Nod is calling my name.  At only $7 I want to get one in every color!  So cute!

Tell me, do you embrace the new Pantone colors every year or only your favorites?

How to Throw the Ultimate Tiki Party

This post is sponsored by Wayfair.
Tiki Party

Summer is here and summer nights practically beg for a party, right?  Summer music playing, fresh squeezed lemonade, a giant inflatable pineapple floating in the pool, and kids running around in hula skirts.  I can picture it now!

Here are some ideas for creating some fun summer memories with The Ultimate Tiki Party!  Click on the pictures below to be taken to the product detail page on Wayfair.com.

Spring Style Idea Board

Spring Inspired Style

Despite the bees and the pollen, I absolutely adore spring.  As I’m typing now I can hear baby birds chirping and as I glance up I see the sun peeping through the new green leaves of a maple tree right outside my window.  I love it.  Spring gives a peaceful, hopeful feeling doesn’t it?  It does for me anyway.  Because of my love for spring I try to incorporate spring inspired style into my decor.

Blue Paint

As many of you know, I recently moved and while I don’t have much unpacked I am enjoying the freshly painted baby blue walls of my home.  It gives it a serene spring like feeling, don’t you think?

Since my new home is over double the size of my old one I’m in the market for some additional furniture and decor.  I’ve been looking around and once again, I’m drawn to the fresh and pastel palettes that remind me of spring.  While I haven’t finalized many purchase decisions yet I’ve had time browsing and shopping around.

I absolutely adore Wayfair and am glad that I was able to partner with them for this post.  On Wayfair.com I was able to create a “Spring Style” idea board.  Anyone can create one (or a dozen!) – it’s easy to do once you log into your account.  While I created this board with the idea of my living room (partly pictured above) I loved the process so much that I’m going to go back and create a nautical one for my son’s room and a frilly girly room for my daughter.  Once we get a little more settled in I think I’ll try my hand at decorating our patio with their lawn and garden decor.

Take a look at my Spring Style board below and let me know which of the items I chose is your favorite!

7 Things I Have Learned From Our Move

This post contains affiliate links to products I own and love.

From Our Move

Since moving last week I’ve discovered quite a few things about myself and I’m sharing them here with you in hopes that you might find them helpful.

Plain Nursery

  • 1.  The biggest thing thing I’ve noticed is that I LOVE clean and open spaces.  Okay, that really shouldn’t have surprised me but how much I love it certainly does.  I don’t even feel like decorating.  I’m sure I’ll decorate as time goes on but right now I’m enjoying the serenity of freshly painted walls.
  • 2.  I thought I would be disgusted by eating out so much but it gave me an opportunity to seek out those healthier options at restaurants that I usually avoid.  …and I liked them!  I may not completely revert back to my “go-to” restaurant favorites.

Temporary Kitchen

  • 3.  After a few days of eating out I decided to see what all was possible with my make-shift kitchen consisting of a fridge, toaster oven, microwave, and a wok on a hot plate.  It turns out that you can make a lot with those!  I’m feeling creative and enjoying the challenge of cooking with less equipment.
  • 4.  I am enjoying, no absolutely relishing in the amount of things we have out.  I feel like I’m on a vacation, just living with the minimum and having the time of my life.  We have all of our unopened boxes in one room and we keep the door shut.  We go in to get what we need and leave the rest there.  Once we have our kitchen cabinets installed and closet systems in place we’ll unpack a bit more but right now I’m loving having less.  We donated a lot as we packed up our old house but because of this high that’s coming from seeing and interacting with less I have a feeling I’m going to be donating a lot more in the coming weeks.  Less toys means less to put away.  Less clothes means more laundry but less choices.  Less things to dust around and vacuum around.  Less has truly made my spirits brighter.  I wish it didn’t take the painstaking ordeal of packing a few hundred boxes to fully convince me but that did the trick.  If you want to live with less you can get started with my 200 Things to Throw Away post!

Geese on a pond

  • 5.  Because we’re in a new place I want to be at my best for my kids.  I don’t want my cranky attitude to make them dislike their new house.  I know that seems silly but if you’re a parent you know how your attitude can affect your child’s.  To help with my attitude I’ve started going to bed earlier.  On purpose.  Every night.  It has helped my attitude tremendously!  I’m still tired through the day because of my narcolepsy but I’m more alert (and happier!) than I have been.
  • 6.  Along with going to bed earlier I’m trying to prep for the next day by laying out clothes, towels for the morning, and planning and prepping breakfast for the next day.  It takes very little time but helps me tremendously as I’m stumbling around in the morning.  I started doing this on my own and I had success but a few days ago my blogging friend, Crystal Paine of MoneySavingMom.com released a new 14 day course that provides a step by step system to help you Make Over Your Evening.  I immediately bought it, devoured it, and can say that I have truly benefited from it.  Here’s my affiliate link if you’d like to check it out for yourself.  The course only takes 15 minutes a day…unless you’re like me and go ahead of schedule. 🙂

In just 15 minutes a day over two weeks the course promises you’ll learn how to:

  • – Establish a Realistic Evening Routine that works — and that sets you up for amazing success!
  • – Design a Prioritized To Do List for each day — one that you’re actually excited to wake up and tackle!
  • – Nourish your body, nurture your soul, and no longer put your health on the back burner — even in the middle of a busy and full life.
  • – Assemble a wardrobe of simple outfits you love and that make you feel great — so you can finally, as Dear Abby Leigh says, “Dress for the day you want to have, instead of the one that’s trying to have you”!
  • – Develop a contagious, positive attitude — so you can experience and express more joy in your everyday life.
  • – And more…  visit MakeOverYourMorning.com for more information.

Walk in the woods

  • 7.  Lastly, I hate to admit that there may possibly be downsides to living in the woods.  The only downside so far is that I’ve found way too many spiders to have only been here a little over a week! (Yes, I saved you and shared a picture of my darling daughter instead of a yucky spider.  You’re welcome!)  I’m seriously thinking of investing in one of these little spider catchers that I’ve seen on Facebook a few times.

If you’ve endured a move and lived to tell about it I would love any advice you have to share!  Happy Monday, friends!

A Touch Of Class: Making Your Studio Look Like A Hotel Room

Working in the city often results in you having to compromise on the size of your apartment. For example, if you live in places like Manhattan, San Francisco and L.A., the places where you can affordably stay in an be quite limited. In such cases, it is actually quite common for many people to simply live in a cramped studio apartment that is barely 24 square meters in size.

For some people, their apartments can be even smaller with some of them being barely 18 square meters. Suffice it to say, you can see that space is at a premium in such locations and it is due to this that the concept of “class” is rarely connected to the “shoe boxes” that people wind up having to live in. However, just because you live in a cramped room does not mean that you cannot bring a touch of elegance into the way you live in order to enhance your overall experience.

Getting a Bed that is Also a Cabinet

Foldable Bed

Source: instantshift.com

One of the more unusual items that you can get for your home comes in the form of a cabinet bed that you can get from sites like Cabinetbed.ca. This is basically a bed that is collapsible and can be inserted into a nondescript yet elegant looking cabinet that can be placed at the side of your apartment. The advantage of choosing this type of bed over a solid mattress is the fact that it not only enables you to have more space as you move around your apartment, it also enables you to have a small mini office in your bedroom that helps you work from home without being tempted to work from your bed the entire day.

Get Soft Lighting and Lamps

Bedroom

Another way of enhancing how your apartment looks based on the advice of ApartmentTherapy.com is to install soft lighting into it along with placing lamps on your side tables. While it may seem like an odd choice, soft lighting is actually rather helpful in creating a nice ambiance in your room. This is further enhanced if you were to place proper light covers on the lights in the ceiling. This helps to distribute the brightness to the extent that it helps to create a nice even setting of lighting. Aside from this, small lamps placed on side tables are an effective way of adding a touch of class to your small room since you can turn of your main lights and turn the lamps on.

Getting the Right Sort of Household Goods

Another thing that you can do is to invest in branded household goods such as the Alessi line of kitchen tools from Lumens. The unique designs really stand out when displayed in a kitchen area, and the entire line is rather durable as compared to ordinary household items that you can buy from your local mall. When displayed via hooks and open shelves in your kitchen, they really add a considerable touch of class to your tiny apartment.

Have Carpeting Installed

People tend to forget that the floor of their apartment is also a valuable element when it comes to enhancing the overall appearance of their home. However, it is normally the case that they neglect to add sufficient “enhancements” to the floor and leave things as-is. This results in people looking at the floor and seeing nothing more than drab tiling, or maybe even wood flooring that looks like it has seen better days.

Installing Carpet

In order to enhance the look of your apartment, install some plush carpeting that both matches your walls yet can be easily cleaned. While investing in carpeting may seem to be a rather expensive option, you need to take into consideration the fact that you will be the one who will make the most use out of it. Just imagine the feeling of a nice plush carpet as you walk across it. There are few feelings like it in the world and shows just how nice a carpet would be both for the sake of appearance, as well as how it would feel like on your feet.

All in all, if you implement even a few of these recommendations when redesigning your studio apartment, they’ll go a long way towards enhancing the overall look and feel of the place. Just remember, making your apartment look good is more for yourself, since a nice apartment helps to create a calming and homey feel that enables you to relax after a long day at work. In fact, Gizmodo.com states that an apartment that looks drab and tiny makes you want to avoid it rather than stay in it—and this defeats the purpose of having an apartment in the first place.