Sunday 30 September 2012

Cash Stash - Money Savings Envelope (Part 1)

My Cash Stash system is a savings method that I have acquired over the years, after reading a number of books/articles on managing finances.  This is a system that I have modified to work for me, and I am sure that you can modify it to suit you, if you are serious about saving some of your hard-earned cash!
Although I will admit that I don't do this all of the time, when I am being budget-conscious, I swing back into the habit, and it is surprising how much money accumulates just from these simple principles that give me excess cash (that I would have otherwise spent), which I like to call my Cash Stash!

Saturday 29 September 2012

Organising Finances to use the 'Cash Stash' Savings System

This week on the blog, I have a five-part series which reveals a budgeting method that I have used for many years, which helps me to achieve my financial goals.

In order to run with this system, there are few things that you need to get organised first!  So, I thought I would share these with you today, so that you can get your finances organised, ready to try this new savings method, that recently helped me to save $300 for an Expedit bookshelf for my study makeover, in just over one month!  I didn't go without anything, I didn't do extra work to get more income, I simply managed the money that I had budgeted using the Cash Stash savings system!

Firstly, it is best if you have a budget set up.  This system really works best if you partly operate your money system using cash, which I certainly do.  I get paid fortnightly, withdrawing all money that I have allocated for groceries, petrol, presents, spending, and spend the cash over the next few weeks, rather than swiping my cards.  I have labelled sections in my purse, so that I can keep my money easily organised to manage this system.

Friday 28 September 2012

My Study - The Colour Scheme

It has been quite a while since I wrote about my study make-over....  I guess I kind of lost momentum with it, partly due to lots else happening in my life recently, but also because of my indecisiveness.  I am notorious for not being a confident decision-maker, so I procrastinate making a choice, for fear of it not being 'perfect'.  This is something that I have been working on getting over in recent years, but my study is the prime example of this side of my perfectionist personality rearing its ugly head! 

A big part of my reluctance to proceed with the study make-over has been the fact that I couldn't decide on a colour theme.  I knew I wanted white furniture, but the colours of everything else in there has been playing on my mind.

You have probably noticed that I have lots of red in my house.  I love the colour red!  It was the colour of my year 12 formal dress, I had a red car for 4 years, it was the colour of my bridesmaids dresses and roses at my wedding, and it also happens to be the main color of the Danish flag - which I am proud to have as my heritage.  Red is such a powerful colour, I know when I wear red I am going to have a great day!

Given that most of my house already has red accents, and the fact that I have so many red storage boxes and accessories already in red, I was pretty keen to stay with red as the key colour of my study, but I knew I wanted another colour to compliment it.  Sometimes red can be quite bold, and I wanted a pastel colour to help calm the 'boldness' down.

The answer to my dilemma came when my sister recently was travelling to America and offered to bring home some goodies.  To my delight, I came across these divine file folders by Martha Stewart, and knew that my problem had been solved!

Thursday 27 September 2012

Christmas Wrapping Paper - 2012

I took the plunge today and bought my Christmas wrapping paper for this year!  It is such a big decision - well for me it is anyway!  I like to have all matching paper, and since I am not that great coordinating patterns, I like to stick with one style of paper for all of our Christmas presents.

The last 5 or so years, our Christmas colours have been Brown and Gold.  You can see where I have posted about this here and here.  This year I decided to shake things up a bit, and I am adding Red to the mix.  At the after-Christmas sales last year I bought up big - lots of red baubles and tinsel, which cost next to nothing!  I am ready for my new-look Christmas in 2012!

So, when it came to the wrapping paper, I knew I wanted red, to help to bring out the new colour I am adding to my colour theme - as I won't have half as many red decorations as I do brown and gold.  This is my cheap and easy way of making our tree burst with the new colour!

Here it is....

Wednesday 26 September 2012

A Summer Serving Tray

The weather is finally warming up, and for us, that means we move our meals to outside on the back patio!  There is nothing like being outside in the fresh air, it sure beats sitting inside in front of the TV!

To make the constant transition from kitchen to patio (which isn't really that far, but the door is always where I have to juggle things!), last year I decided to leave my favourite serving tray out on the coffee table near the kitchen.  This way, I could just pop it onto the bench and fill it up with whatever we need for the upcoming meal.

Tuesday 25 September 2012

Snowman Soup - Christmas Gift Idea

Last year I had a great time making 'Snowman Soup' for lots of colleagues, friends and family!  I first found this idea here on the Organised Christmas website (also where I found all of the printables for my Christmas planner). 

It was really easy to source the bits and pieces I needed to put together my twist on this cute Christmas novelty gift idea.... A little bag of all of the ingredients for hot chocolate, along with this cute little poem to make Snowman Soup:

I heard that you've been good this year,
You've done everything just right.
So here is some Snowman Soup
For you to enjoy one Christmas night.

First, pour the packet into a mug,
Then add water - boiling hot.
Next stir with the peppermint stick,
Then, one last thing that I almost forgot!

That's right, you must add the secret ingredient
To make the perfect Snowman Soup,
It's super-sweet and oh-so tasty...
Drop in the Snowman Poop!

All you need is hot chocolate sachets, candy canes, marshmallows and snap lock bags.

Monday 24 September 2012

20 Days to Clean and Organise Your Home - Week 3

This week I loved the outdoors challenge!  My poor back patio area has been very neglected after such a cold winter, so it was definitely time for me to get out there and give it some love.
This is what it looked like before:

Mini Oreo Cupcakes

You all know that I love a cute cupcake, these ones are really easy to make - and don't they just look adorable?!

Saturday 22 September 2012

Rubber Ducky with Cupcake Washers Gift Idea

Following on from my Cupcake Facewasher post last week, today I thought I would share this cute little present for a baby, which has the handmade touch, but takes very little time to put together.


Wednesday 19 September 2012

Cupcake Facewashers Gift Idea

I made these lovely little cupcakes as thank-you gifts for my sister's baby shower last year.

Sunday 16 September 2012

Lemonade Scones

I made these quick and easy scones yesterday morning - they were light and fluffy and yummy!

Friday 14 September 2012

20 Days to Clean and Organise Your Home - Week 2

I have been so proud of everyone who has been doing this challenge with the Organised Housewife!  What an impact she is having on households around our world!  There is nothing better than a little organising challenge, and it is great to see so many people inspired to participate.

I am finding it hard to do before/after photos of the little projects I have been doing, as I am mostly doing them late afternoon/night and it just is not the prime time for taking good photographs without the natural light... 

So, rather than post some awful before/after pics of how I am going with the challenge, I thought I would link back to some of my posts that show how I already organise some of the areas in my home that have been in the challenge this week.  And thankfully, most of these systems are still working a treat in my house, so it is just fine-tuning and tweaking that I have been doing to make sure that things are still running smoothly.

I am still in love with how I organise my baking tins, everytime I open the cupboard door...

Organising Baking Tins - here

Friday 7 September 2012

My Planner - Daily Planner Page

Following on from my post last weekend on My Planner, today I will share my daily planner page.  This is my planner page for my working week - I use one page per day.  As mentioned previously, I find commercial diary pages don't suit my needs, so I have designed my own pages, based on what I need and use.  I have changed my daily planner template numerous times, although the one I am currently using has definitely lasted the longest and has been the  most efficient.  So, here it is...

Wednesday 5 September 2012

Erasable Highlighters and Felt Pens

Last year I wrote about my favourite pens - the Frixion eraseable pens, which you can read about here.  I just love these pens - they come in a range of colours, and the best part is that they rub out!  You loved them too - I got so much great feedback about the pens from people who hadn't heard of them before!

I noticed a little while back that there have been some new additions to the Frixion family, so I thought I should share them with you!

Firstly, there are a erasable felt-tip pens! 

Sunday 2 September 2012

I Love Spring Time!

I love this time of the year!  I love the warm weather and I especially love the flowers that fill our garden!

Here are some of the beauties that I have to look forward to coming back to my garden in the coming months...

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