Home Sweet Home on a Cardboard Box Budget

Good morning, y’all! 😊 The weekend is so close I can almost taste it! Do y’all have anything exciting planned?

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Since we talked a bit yesterday about my itty-bitty apartment and how that competes with my deep, burning desire to own my own home, I thought it might be fun to delve into how I satiate that yearning by making our current place as lovable as possible.

First of all, let me just say that for the first 4-5 years I was in my apartment, I didn’t decorate- at all. I’m going to chalk this up to having basically less than no money. When Prince Charming moved in is when we really started making our apartment a home for both of us- while still having very little extra in the spending department.

COUPONS AND CASH BACK.

Y’all remember this little post about saving while spending on the things you want and need? Truthfully, I could not tell you the last time I went shopping without using one of these resources! My friends make fun of me because I am all about the email coupons- even if it’s just 10 or 15%. I love Ibotta for redeeming in-store purchases, but I also use my store cards to their greatest advantage too. For instance, with my Target red card I get 5% off of every purchase and free shipping all the time. With my Amazon card I get 5% back in “rewards points” that I can then apply to my next purchase and free two-day shipping with my Prime membership. I told y’all that Prime Day and Target’s Big One Day Sale got me good, so……

Shop the Sale!

Prince Charming and I have this gorgeous LG OLED tv and up until last Friday it was sitting atop a very dated wood/glass tv stand. Barf. I’d had my eye on a beautiful grey washed wood entertainment center with lots of storage and fireplace insert, as well as a grey and white circular area rug for our living room. Between these two items I would have been looking to drop about $450. Not a huge amount, but enough to make me pause before hitting ‘submit order’. WOULDN’T YOU KNOW IT that when Target’s Big One Day Sale came around, BOTH of these things were on sale?! I was happier than a pig in mud when I opened up that Target app! All in all, between the sale and the 5% back with my Red Card AND free shipping, I saved $125! I ended up getting my big rug, the entertainment stand, a shower caddy, new memory foam bathroom mats, AND a new welcome mat for $388. Shop smarter, not harder, y’all!

Shop second-hand and become a DIY queen.

I only spent the money on a new entertainment stand after several months of scouring local thrift shops and Goodwill. Both tables in my living room were bought second-hand refinished by yours truly (hold the applause, please). In both instances I was drawn to the style of the piece- the bones. Fixing peeling paint, sanding, and changing out hardware can make the most gorgeous difference in an old, beat up piece of furniture that someone else would just as soon throw away. Watch the YouTube videos, browse Pinterest and channel your inner Joanna Gaines. Rose gold spray paint has become one of my favorite things- I have numerous little glass bottles and jars covered with the stuff and it really helps pull together the décor.

Hang something on the walls.

This is legitimately the LAST thing I wanted to do in our apartment, but it’s made such a huge difference in the overall feel of our place. Like, yes, we do actually live here.  You can tell by the framed Harry Potter poster hanging behind the tv. 😊

Rugs, blankets and candles.

I’m not joking, y’all. When I think of the most homey rooms I’ve ever been in, they always include these things (and people I love). 😊 Also, have you ever noticed that everyone else’s home has a distinct aroma? Not necessarily bad, but specific to that person’s place. Guess what? Yours does too. Light the darn candles.

Act like your momma is coming to visit- keep things clean and tidy

If you’re a clutter bug and you need help getting rid of all the crap that you seem to accumulate, give me a call. I’ll be more than happy to come throw away stuff for you! I don’t know about y’all, but I absolutely CANNOT relax in a space when it’s messy, dirty or cluttered- whether it’s my home or someone else’s. My greatest struggle is making sure the dishes get done (even though I have a dishwasher!), but I know that keeping up on the cleaning makes others feel more comfortable and makes me proud of our home when we have company.

What do y’all do to make your place feel like home without blowing a ton of cash?

Much love,

Zoe’

P.S. Maybe it’s just the southerner in me, but let me offer one last piece of advice- DO NOT invite people over and not feed them. Trust me on this. 😉

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