A WeApoN oF MaSSiVe CoNSumPtIoN

I suffer from a  well-known social disorder called Stufitis. Dave Ramsey’s book Financial Peace came in this week from Amazon*. I bought it used because the library had a three-month wait! I read the whole thing in one day. The chapters were short and highly informative. With the BK looming closer and closer, I have to make some changes. In the past, I was using some of the techniques I found with Mary Hunt’s Debt Proof Living. Many of the concepts are the same. She has a Rapid Debt Reduction plan and he has the Snowball Effect. Both recommend an emergency fund and both say STOP SPENDING!

I am so damn materialistic…heck it even shows up in my Zodiac sign, Taurus and in my Chinese zodiac sign Metal Pig! Double whammy! Sadly, this disorder is more than something to kid about. It is an addiction. I have $6.00 in savings, minimal retirement and about a paycheck away from being on the streets. Dealing with money has always been an issue for me. My addiction feeds into my insecurity of wanting to be like my friends, having enough and wanting more.

As I clear the Fog of Vagueness away from my finances, I begin to see the destruction this disease has caused in my life. I won’t lie, I LOVE TO SHOP! But damn, it is costing me my life.

Dave’s book talks about baby steps. I love this concept. My personality often tends to go overboard and tries to devour all knowledge at once. With these steps, I have a clear plan for my financial present and future. Over the course of this week I will be completing a review of my budget and will create my cash spending envelopes. Payday is this week so I will be able to get this new plan rolled out and ready for next payday.

Baby Steps. Yep, Baby Steps!

I leave you with one of my favorite Lily Allen songs (it has explicit lyrics) called The Fear

{*Amazon has a trade-in program where you can send in your old books and are given a trade in value. This value is put on a “card” for you that can be applied to future purchases. I was able to get my book for $3.11, that was the book and shipping. Check it out!!}

au revoir!

OtHeR PeoPles TrAsH

Hello, my name is Alyssa and I am a triftaholic!

It’s no lie, I average about three trips per week to the thrift shop. I keep an eye out of decorative items, vintage finds and purses…I seem to get one each time I stop by the thrift shop. I have shared finds before and will make it a more regular feature of the blog.

I have a book I travel with that holds a list of items I would like to have for the apartment. Along with that, I also keep an eye out for things I can use for my etsy shop (see the link on the side bar, it will take you right to my shop!).  A recent trip to Epic was just that…EPIC! JJDouglasPaperCo is a handmade envelope company and what does a paper company need? A guillotine paper cutter!!! FOR $2.99! Oh hells yeah!

The downside to this new obsession is bringing too many things into the apartment. With this, I am implementing a new rule. For every one thrifted item I bring into the house, I have to remove (donate) one item from the apartment. This should help maintain my spending and I don’t turn into crazy thrift shop lady.

What was the best item you got from a thrift shop??

au revoir


With the BFF staying with me, in the tiny adobe that I have, space is at a premium. One of my concerns was giving up the office space in which was envelope making central. Using the kitchen table was inconvenient with lugging all the supplies around, which is frustrating for this budding entrepreneur to say the least.

Then I was gifted a vintage desk from My BFF and her hubs Slim C. I could not be happier! It holds ALL of my paper and supplies and is just the right height for working on my envelopes. So dang happy! I used it with much success last weekend and am well on my way to get some new items out to my etsy store.

au revoir!

A NoN-CoOks KiTcHen

The kitchen challenge is a success! I spent most of Saturday afternoon and Sunday morning working on the project. Since I rent, I was not able to change the cabinets. I am allowed to paint walls but that is a project for a different day. I had set up zones last year for the kitchen, which made this years de-clutter even easier. My objective was to clean, de-clutter and organize. After the photos is a list of the amount of clutter removed {in pounds} and the number of items donated. Along with the budget spent and what I used to clean. I did purchase some items for the fridge but the rest was re-purposed from items I already had in the kitchen. Enjoy the slide show!

{The furry helper who keeps showing up is my cat Isabeau}

It was a productive weekend. And that means that today, I relax!

Stats for 2012 ReDesign Challenge, Kitchen

Pounds of Clutter Removed: 41.5#

Number of items donated: 18

Cleaner Used: Warm Soapy Water and Mrs. Myers All Purpose Cleaner

Budget: Two red boxes @ $5.99 {Target}, One Ice Cube box @ $3.99 {Target}, Two Dish Racks @ $2.99 {Goodwill}, and 2 rolls of Red shelf liner @ $4.47 {Walmart}, total $20.44 {.44 over budget}

MuStArd & KetCHuP

Those are the colors of my kitchen. Inspired by two kitchen items I received over the years. Mustard from the Martha Stewart mixing bowls I received as a present years ago from my mom. Ketchup from an adorable red tea-pot I have (and quite frankly, don’t remember where it came from). I am not changing that theme, but I am going to clear out the stuff I don’t need and refine the zones.

Since I was blessed by not having to work OT this weekend, I am going hog-wild in the kitchen…and I ain’t cooking!

I created a board on Pinterest called A Non-Cook’s Kitchen that has some inspiration ideas for me. Below is the few pictures I am using for today’s clean and de-clutter.

So now I am off to take photo’s of the apartment for all the before shots. THEN! I clean the kitchen. Stay tuned…the first kitchen post is coming soon!

au revoir!

a BraNd NEw YeAr

The one thing that I am learning about blogging is ~ Life happens when you are busy making other plans~! My lofty goal to re-organize my life has been sidelined by work and adjusting to adding my BFF to my home life. The good thing is that it sets new priorities and having my BFF here has made me realize that I need adjust my plans which is actually a benefit that I didn’t even see.

Case in point, the morning coffee.

I have a Keurig, which works perfectly for me. I enjoy flavored coffee and with my erratic schedule the Keurig is quick and convenient for me. Not so for the roomie. She enjoys the taste of the good black java, specially blended for her by her hubs. This was not working out since she had to use the K-cup twice just to be able to her mug filled and ready to go in the morning. Not a time saver…in any way! So we created the coffee station. Brilliant!

I held onto a 10cup coffee maker for a very specifc reason…having guests. So we took the vintage serving cart and loaded up the top with both machines. The BFF can now program her brew to be ready, just with the amount she needs for the morning. I rearranged the glass ware and shifted the coffee cups to the cart. Way to repurpose!

I didn’t have a chance to add some before photos, but here are the after!


It’s a start in the right direction and it really works out well.

au revoir!


Source: http://bit.ly/stYM40

It is finally here!!!! 2012! I am glad to see 2011 past into the distance. It was a good year I must say. I turned forty, I have a job that I do enjoy (despite the long hours) and my friends and family are healthy! Really, what more can I ask for?

I took last week away from the blog to work on the content for the new year. My focus will be on creating a comfortable home, building my Etsy business and working on financial stuff. However, my first order of business is to introduce the 2012 ReDesign Challenge.

Since owning my first home, I have began a declutter project at the beginning of each new year. Room by room, one room a month, de-cluttering and organizing. The goal of this years challenge is to learn to live with less, use what I have, re-purpose what I have and ‘green’ my routines. With that mission statement in mind, I will have some rules to this Challenge.

  1. Declutter – record the number of pounds purged, list items donated for tax purposes, repurpose items and list items for home inventory.
  2. One Year to an Organized Life” by Regina Leeds will be the main source book for room-by-room organizing.
  3. Green Routines – Create and use natural, less toxic cleaning solutions
  4. (my favorite part) Decorate! Use what I have to create a new look to the apartment, infused with a bit of whimsy and bohemian accents
  5. {and the biggest challenge of it all!} Spend only $20 per month for each room!

The past few weeks I have been creating numerous PDF files full of sources and ideas for the apartment. January will be all about the kitchen. With the building up of the stock pile and making a concentrated effort to eat better, the kitchen really needs to be re-zoned and organized. My Pinterest boards are just exploding with ideas!!!

I am looking forward to this challenge as much as I am looking forward to the new year! BRING IT ON 2012!

I am not writing any resolutions this year. I just want to live happy and be healthy.

au revoir