LovE LoVe lOvE the GOODWILL!

1 Oct

I have always shopped secondhand stores. Ever since I was in high school. I loved to go to antique stores with my grandma, prowl around garage sales, shop consignment stores, dig through thrift stores and sift through resale shops. It is seriously a disease for me! I have always found ways around paying full price and I think it just came out of necessity for me from when I was young. We started our family young (and I mean too young) and I didn’t want anyone to ever think we could not provide for our family or to ever look at my baby at the time and feel sorry for us in any way. I just would not have it! So I bought everything used. I “creatively shopped” for my baby and apartment and I HAVE NEVER STOPPED…fast forward 16 1/2 years later and you wouldn’t find me shopping at any high end retail stores (unless it is in the way back searching for red tags and clearance signs) even if I have the money. There is just NO REASON to waste money like that. With a little time, creativity and elbow grease I can always find what I need secondhand. For the most part that is…

Today was what I call a “GOOD Goodwill day!” I scored some pretty neat things and have to share:

I found these decorative balls and pears all in a bag ($6) and I knew they would be PERFECT in a bowl on my new coffee table (I will share the coffee table story later)…

Don’t they look perfect?!

This cute little faux plant ($2) was perfect for my powder room…

I had also found this pretty pink GAP sweater ($4.99) that has the cutest satin ribbon that ties the back together. Paired with my black skinny jeans, black riding boots and a string of pearls it made a darling outfit!

And of course a game for my kiddos for only $2…

And this is why I encourage people to shop frugal, shop penny pinching, SHOP THE GOODWILL! Nobody knows where your goods came from and quite frankly who cares!


Taking the “bored” out of a rainy afternoon.

29 Sep

I am sure that many of you out there already know a lot about altered art but I had this wild hair to alter something the other day while I was stuck inside on a gloomy and rainy afternoon here in Washington. I bought a mom’s planner and calendar kit from Costco a couple of weeks ago (I buy the calendar every year because it is VERY mom friendly). The only downside to the planner is, or I should say WAS…that it was a god awful yellow with cartoony things on the front. It was hands down THE GIANT BRIGHT YELLOW ELEPHANT in my office as it laid on my black desk. My kids even asked, “DUDE mom! Why would you buy that?!”

So the other day when I had a little spare time before I had to jet off to work to do a cooking class (and NO it was not to sell any products…it was a real cooking class at someone’s private home to teach actual cooking) I altered the office elephant! And just in case there is somebody out there who is not familiar with how to do it…here a quick and easy “how to!”

~I began with a very you, gee, ell, why planner.

~I used good old Mod Podge and put a good coating on to the front cover.

~I took a piece of pretty scrapbooking paper that I had outlined the front cover onto, cut out and adhered it to the front. Next I did the same to the back cover.

~I embellished the side of the planner with a bit of ribbon, lightly sanded the edges of the planner for a clean line and made a little bookmark to mark the week I am in on my planner. I took this thing from “OH MY GOD! WHAT IS THAT?!” to “Oh that’s a cute little thing!” in just a few minutes.

Now go alter something! If your anything like me you have got oodles and oodles of scrapbooking paper collecting dust!!

20 Things I love about fall!

10 Sep

Boy am I in the MOOD for fall this year! I am feeling so nesty and fall twitter~pated that I can not control myself from starting early!  Here are my 20 favorite things about fall…

1.   Pumpkins! Nothing says fall like pumpkins and I am patiently waiting for my grocery store to get them in so I can start on my faux pumpkin patch in the front yard!

2.   My favorite fall simmer: Orange slices, whole cloves and cinnamon sticks covered in water and simmered on low on the stove. The kids LOVE coming home to this.

3.   Stews and soups bubbling on the stove or in the crockpot.

4.   The winds coming up from the gorge and blowing through our backyard trees.

5.   Dahlias! Dahlias! Dahlias! The local Dahlia farm is overflowing with Dahlias in every possible color and size you can imagine. I love taking the kids to cut Dahlias!

6.   Its time turn fire up the fireplace.

7.   Fall decorating…need I say more?

8.   Pulling out the fall decorating bins and pulling out last years end of season fall clearance deals!

9.   Kids are still on an an enthusiastic beginning of school year high!

10.  The leaves begin to change colors.

11.  Flannel sheets.

12.  Wearing boots!

13.  Candles burning.

14.  Reading a book to the sound of rain outside.

15.  Peets eggnog lattes! (Go try one ASAP!)

16.  Sporting my bright red peacoat.

17.  Enjoying a nice bottle of wine with friends.

18.  The excitement in my kids as Halloween approaches.

19.  Tis the season to be THANKFUL!

20.  Having a beautiful life and home is more about your attitude and state of mind than your state of perfection.

Sunday morning.

5 Sep

It is all nice and quiet in the Carranza house this sunday morning and that is because for the first time in a year and a half we didn’t have to do the sunday morning rush to get my oldest daughter to work on time. She drove herself there ALL BY HER BIG GIRL SELF! As I started this blog post I looked outside my office window and watched her car pull away. I can not believe she has her license now and is driving everywhere. Alone. Without me or Jason pressing our foot on to the imaginary break or grabbing on to the imaginary “holy shit bar.” Which keeps me in the constant thoughts of wondering why can’t I put my foot on to the imaginary break of life? and I sure hope I have an imaginary “holy shit bar” to hold on to when this kid goes off to college. I am so not ready for this phase…

But its inevitable. They all grow up and they grow up way too fast. In the meantime I will soak up every little precious heart panging moment I can. Like this morning…watching her pull away from the house for the first time without me.

All I can think to say is “Dude, life is NUTS!”

Crazy for fall!

26 Aug

I am totally and completely known among Facebook for whining and complaining all through springtime about how I can not wait for it to be summer here in Washington. There is only so much precipitation this native San Diegan girl can handle. And now here I am wishing it was fall and we still have a month of summertime left! I swear my husband is right (sometimes) when he says “you will NEVER be happy!”

I consider it “FALL” when the kids go back to school which in our case comes a little early this year (YAY)…I am noticing every year they start a little earlier and earlier. Pretty soon they will start the fall school year in spring!
I snuck out a couple of fall decorations onto my front porch the other day so I can publicly tell my neighborhood “HELLO! I can’t wait for fall!!” Hopefully the neighbors wont mind my early approach to my most favorite season of the year…it makes me happy what can I say?! Here are a couple of little things that I snuck out early to greet me at my front door which sometimes is the perfect tonic when I am rushing around in a frenzy because it makes me stop for a second and puts a smile on my face…

Nothing says fall like my brown house with the mustard yellow front door. I think I naturally gravitate to fall colors!

This adorable sign I found last year on the clearance rack for about $6 and it is one of my most FAVORITE fall items that I have!

I treated myself to these gorgeous late summer/early fall Dahlias…

And this little candle holder from Yankee Candle that I COULD NOT resist gets my “Cutest Couple” award! Aren’t they just to die for! I love it!…

Hello AGAIN world!

9 Aug

So most of you know I had this goofy blog going for a bit called 6packaday. I was really enjoying being expressive over the internet until one day my email got hacked. Attached to my email was all of my personal information (address, phone numbers, birthday, etc.) and so was my previous blog. In a moment of paranoid panic I deleted everything. I wasn’t sure what the heck was going on but I knew that all of my personal information was compromised and I didn’t want to take any chances with my internet privacy. In the end I had come to find out it was just hackers getting into my email address to send all of my contacts a link to buy Viagra over the internet.


It was too late. I didn’t even get a chance to save my short stories but I am back…AGAIN. Same name just spelled a little differently because WordPress does not allow you to reuse blog names in order to keep from other people writing as the original author. I can dig it…makes sense.

So I am back at it again. I am changing it up a little bit this time around…maybe going to try out having less of a potty mouth and write about some more things besides just my kids. Maybe porn? Just kidding. I don’t know! We will see where it takes me. Thanks for reading and I hope to make you inspired, LAUGH OUT LOUD or roll your eyes.


The queen of the six pack:)