Pinspiration: Fall Essentials

Although I feel that this outfit could definitely use either an additional splash of color, another print possibly added into the scarf, or a little texture, it features all items I consider fall essentials due to their versatility and timelessness:  flat knee-high boots, blazers, striped shirts, scarves, and neutral bottoms.   What are your fall essentials?

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Pinspiration: DIY Plastic Bag Organization

Oh hey. I’m Kate. You may know me from my blog thetwentysixthyear or more specifically as one of Megan’s best friends: proof of friendship. I am honored to be guest blogging today and thought I should kick off with a fun fact:

I love cleaning and organizing.

Rewind. Yes, it’s true. I actually enjoy cleaning and organizing. I find it cathartic.

What do I love more than cleaning? Travel. In fact, how awesome would it be to be traveling the Irish countryside right now??! But since we couldn’t fit into Megan’s suitcase, we’ll stick to organizing.

Have you ever found yourself in this situation:

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Too many bags. Piling up in the cupboard. So annoying.

However, they can be useful – packing lunches, trashcan liners, etc.

The solution? Storing for reuse!!


  • Plastic bags
  • Clear packing tape

Step 1: Flatten out bags, removing all air.

Step 2: Fold bags in half and line bags up so handles overlap the previous bag.

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Step 3: Fold the handle of the first bag (furthest to the left). This will be your center bag – the first bag you’ll pull out.

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Step 4: Tightly roll the bags tucking in the handles of the next bag as you roll.

Step 5: Once you’ve rolled up the final bag, I used clear packing tape around the outside of the final bag which created it’s own canister.

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VOILA!! Organization and peace of mind.

Another option? Tatortots & Jello used an old Lysol wipes container instead of packing tape (how clever!).  What organization tricks do you have up your sleeve?

**Idea courtesy of Tatortots & Jello**

Pinspiration: LC

From her classic, relaxed, easy-to-replicate style to her beachy blonde hair to her success as a best-selling writer of multiple novels and style guides to her affordable fashion line at Kohl’s to always standing up for her friends, Lauren Conrad is one lady to reckon with and someone I constantly am finding myself turning to for style and hair inspiration.  Admit it, you’ve always secretly loved her since Laguna Beach too!


Images via 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7

DIY Chalkboard Platter

Since I am unfortunately unable to create the ultra coveted chalkboard wall in my rental apartment, I settled for this much smaller DIY chalkboard platter inspired by Wit & Whistle and perfect for multiple entertaining purposes (think cheese and cookies!).

First a quick note about this particular porcelain paint I used through the recommendation of Wit & Whistle: the company states they do not recommend using this specific paint for surfaces that come in contact with food. However, it is water based, non-toxic, and Dick Blick suggests using it to paint a dinner plate so I don’t see the harm in simply placing cookies or cheese on it but just wanted to divulge all the important information. 🙂

Materials Needed:

porcelain platter (mine is from CB2, find it here)
Pebeo Porcelaine chalkboard paint (from Amazon or in 10 different colors at Dick Blick)
painter’s tape
soft bristle paintbrush
kitchen oven

Steps to Take:

1. Make sure your platter is completely clean and dry.  If desired, use painter’s tape to mask off the edges of the platter for clean, crisp lines, otherwise skip this step and freehand it.

2. Using a soft bristle brush, apply the paint in thin, even horizontal strokes. Allow the first coat to dry completely before applying the second coat.  Immediately remove the painter’s tape carefully before the paint from the second coat dries to ensure the edges don’t peel up when removing.  Let the second coat dry for 24 hours.

3. When the paint has dried for a full 24 hours, bake your platter following the instructions printed on the back of the paint bottle. If using the Pebeo Porcelaine Chalkboard Paint, preheat the oven to 300 degrees, bake 35 minutes, turn off the oven, leave the platter inside, and allow to cool to room temperature before removing.  After baking, the platter will be dishwasher and microwavable safe!

Have you ever chalked something? I would love to see all your chalkboard paint projects! Upload a picture or link to my Facebook Page to share!

Pinspiration from Wit & Whistle

April Date Night

Contents:  Chicago Bulls tickets

Cost:  $132 for the tickets + whatever we drink/eat while at The United Center

The Plan:  Watch the Chicago Bulls dominate the Cleveland Cavaliers at The United Center on Thursday, April 26th.  This will be my FIRST ever professional basketball game so I am totally stoked!

The Date Night:  Justin and I had a great time strolling the United Center drinking margaritas while taking in the historic basketball pictures, witnessing the famous starting lineup introduction made famous by the Pippen/Jordan reign (see it here), laughing through the Matadors third quarter performance, and watching the Bulls demolish the Cavaliers 107-75.  All in all it was a successful date night regardless of our ho-hum attitude towards professional basketball.

“When you get a team that truly commits and everybody puts everything into it every day, you don’t have to worry about anything else.”

– Tom Thibodeau on the key to the Bulls’ success but sounds like the key to marriage success too –

To see other monthly date nights, click here!

**Idea Source:  Life in General Blog**