Monday, 30 July 2012

Wedding Favours, Favour

What a great weekend this was...I had my bachelorette party which was!  I just have to get some pictures from some of the ladies I celebrated with and then I will share a few and fill you in on the details  :)

And since we're on the wedding topic, I'm looking for a favour...your thoughts/advice on wedding favours.

If you've been married, or been to a wedding, what were the best favours that you gave/received?   We're looking to keep the budget on the lower side but hate the idea of giving out some little trinket that people don't want anyways.  Edibles are always good, I know I always love a little treat waiting on my plate for me when I go to a wedding.   But I'm looking for maybe a more unique idea. 


I also like the idea of seeds, so people can plant them and watch them grow (just like our love...awwww haha). 

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I've also been to a few weddings where people haven't given each guest a favour, but rather made a donation on the guests behalves to a charity.  That's a really thoughtful idea and something that will never go to waste - we really like this idea.

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Let me know if something has ever stood out to you as a really nice, thoughtful gift at a wedding  :)

Any ideas you've seen at weddings?  Something inspiring on pinterest??

Friday, 27 July 2012

Showers of Happiness

I haven't been sharing very many wedding details - I find it tricky, my family reads my blog and I don't want to spoil any details before the big day (dress shopping, decor, my bouquet...), so many of those things I will share after the big day which is only 5 weeks away now, eeps!

But on July 7th my mom, sister and bridesmaids hosted my shower and I want to share it here so that I can always look back and remember.  It was a hot day and with nearly 30 people in the house I was roasting with all eyes on me.  I've been to tons of showers, but it's definitely a different feeling when the shower is for you.  There was so much attention to detail, eye candy everywhere I looked, everyone worked so hard to make it a special day.

(thank you Mum for the pictures!)


Here's the table before guests arrived and it got swallowed up by extremely generous gifts (if you can see the few gifts that are there already are all in gift bags, as opposed to wrapping paper, because I am the world's worst present opener.  If it's paper, I just cannot rip it, I have to carefully detach each piece of tape or I just feel so bad ruining someone's hard work.  I know, I need to let's just one of my many quirks I guess.  So anyways, my family knows me well enough by now to put gifts in bags so that the gift-opening process can be sped up lol)

(my sister DIYed the window decor, on the left of the table were prizes and the toilet paper roll cake-like thing was for a game)

My Bride-to-Be pretty!

This is the game that all that TP was needed for.  Have you ever played this at a shower?  Guests are put into teams and are given a roll of TP to make one person a bridal gown.  Then they each had to model it as my sister and I scored their efforts.  Fun, fun!

My aunts can get fairly competitive with each other and this game may or may not have ended with one of them yanking the veil off a bride as she modelled down the runway (because their team kept working after all teams had been told to stop lol)  Hilarious.

A lovely and delicious cake in our colours

Cutting the cake...I wish I had a better shot of this table too because there was such attention to all the decor details.  You can see one of the DIYed poms in the window at least

And then how cute are these gifts that the guests got to take home?!  They got to pick an herb (either dill, thyme or mint) that were each labelled with cute names made up by my clever!

"Thyme of our Lives"

"Mint to Be"

Wearing my decked-out sash

And my precious little niece was even wearing a grey dress.  Adorable!

I had such an overwhelmingly wonderful time and was blown away by everyone's thoughtfulness and generousity.  This is such a special time in our lives and those moments where we get to celebrate with our loved ones mean so much. 

As for wedding plans this's my bachelorette party, woot!!!  I'll be sure to share some fun pictures of that next week. 

What are you getting up to this weekend??

Wednesday, 25 July 2012

Light It Up

For far too long the dining room sconces we uncovered, and even hoped to DIY, sat empty and bare like this...


Not very inspiring and they definitely did not help to create an ambiance during formal dinners.  Finally we came across some lights, at a price we were happy with, that we both liked.


A closer look at the before and after...





Much better.  I love their industrial, and even a little bit old look.  They can swivle to point either up or down which is nice for changing things up.

We got a few more lights installed that I'll take some pics of next week too.

Do you have sconces in your home?  What style did you go for - I'd love to see a link if you do!

Monday, 23 July 2012

A Little Extra Cash

When we put our main floor back together, we put in a new kitchen....minus all the appliances.  We have all white, hand-me-down appliances from friends and family.  Our stove looks like it is from the 60s lol.  Actually, maybe it is. 

We debated over buying a new set of appliances because we do love the look of them, but everytime we saw that big 4-digit figure, we couldn't do it.  What we have works perfectly fine, so why fix what ain't broke?  At least, not for the prices the big box stores have.  So we scoured Craigslist/Kijiji for a while and finally came across a 5 month old stainless fridge and bought that for $500. 

After we had so much success at our garage sale, we decided there were a few more things we needed to purge.  Saturday evening I put 4 postings on both Kijiji and Craigslist for mine and my sisters childhood Ikea beds, some dining chairs and an old riding lawn mower that Darryl got from a friend for free (and it sat in our backyard for a good year doing a whole lot of nothing). 

Oh yeah, this baby was all ours

While it was cool and nostalgic, it was not practical or useful for us and, sadly, just took up space.  Twenty minutes after posting we had our first bite!  Two hours later that eye sore Gilson was gone for good and we were $70 richer! 

An hour after that I had a response about one of our beds.  Two hours after that I had 5 emails about it!  This was our first ever Kijiji/Craigslist posting.  We check both sites regularly and have bought a few things from them as well, but never had we posted our own stuff.  And let me tell you, after this weekend we may be hooked.  We started talking about what else we no longer needed in our house lol.

Anyhoo, Sunday afternoon one bed was gone and we had another $80 in our pockets, woot woot! 

Rewind to Friday night - and the initial point I was making in this post...sorry, I got sidetracked!  Darryl had come across 2 stainless steel dishwashers posted for $100.  Convinced he'll be able to fix their flaws (one leaks and the closing mechanism on the other has worn off), we made an offer and today we picked them up for $80 using the money we had made from the lawn mower.  Wonderful!

So as I type Darryl is out in the back taking all the best parts from both to make the perfect dishwasher for us.  They're both the exact same model...he tells me they're high-end dishwashers, although if they clean my dishes for me I couldn't care any less what brand they are.


I'll let you know if we have any luck turning our one-stainless-appliance kitchen into two!

Do you like to scour Kijiji/Craigslist for good deals?  Or making some extra cash by selling your own stuff on there? 

Saturday, 21 July 2012

Unexpected Garage Sale Success

Hello!  I'm still trying to figure out what is wrong with my computer and why it won't let me upload my own pictures into my posts (Thanks for your suggestion Nette, I'm working on trying that out and praying that it will work!)

In the meantime I thought I would post about something that I don't have many pictures for anyways (Update: Finally figured out my picture mess and have a few pictures now).  After my Mum and sister held a bridal shower for us, we knew we had to make room in the house for the new stuff. We could finally let go of what felt like millions of off-casts that we had accepted from people three years ago when we moved in. We had doubles, triples and even some quadruples of some items. We were so, so grateful to the people who gave us their hand-me-downs when we moved in because we had only the basics. But now, three years later, we know that we don't need three twin sized beds in our house, for example. So right after the wedding shower, we decided to hold a garage sale the next weekend and my sister and her husband joined in as well!

After reading some of the tips on YHL we set to work raiding each and every room in our house for things that we hadn't used or even seen in the last year.  As we found each item we priced it right away, which on the day of the garage sale we were really grateful for.  That way, if we were busy with a customer, my sister or brother-in-law could see how much we were asking for and sell it for us.  Also, when I go to garage sales I always prefer to see a price tag to have an idea of how much negotiation wiggle room I'll have.

The night before the sale, our main floor was jam packed and Darryl thought it would be hilarious to hide amongst the junk and play "Where's Darryl?" 

Disclaimer: this was at roughly 2am after a looonnnggg day of getting all of the stuff together, biking around at 1am to post our signs and we were getting delirious.

Getting into position...

So....can you spot him?

This one is even better because of the floating pillow in the middle of the room.  Never a dull moment with this guy, I tell ya.

Anyhoo, here are a few things that helped us to have a successful garage sale...

Advertising:  My brother-in-law posted our sale on Kijiji and Craigslist the Monday before the sale and that very day he had at least 5 people emailing him for more information, so get their attention early on!

Signage:  Make it bold, clear, concise and consistent.  I made 12 neon pink signs with thick, dark writing that was easy to read from far away.  Darryl and I rode our bikes around to post them the night before, around 1am, because we're ca-razy like that.  Good signage is KEY to getting people to your house. 

Pricing:  Knowing that most garage salers will haggle, we priced a good deal of our stuff a dollar or two over what we wanted to get for it, but still kept the prices low.  For example, I was selling a desk and put a price tag of $18 on it (come on, $18 for a desk!?  Who wouldn't bite at that!?), knowing that people would haggle me down a bit.  I would be happy to get $15 for it.  We ended up selling it for $12 in the end and were thrilled to not have to pack it into the car to send off to value village!  We also decided, half way through, not to price things at the obvious $5 or $10 marks.  We always picked a more obscure number like $12 or $17, knowing that people would take us down to $10 or $15.  That way they felt like they got a bargain and we didn't feel like we'd lost out. 

Limiting the word "no":  Because we weren't in this to make money - we just desperately wanted to de-clutter - we rarely said no to someone who offered us a lower price than what we had posted.  As long as it wasn't insultingly low, we sold it to them and let me tell you, all those 50 cent sales add up quickly!

Offering discounts:  I didn't think clothing would really sell, so I only put some of my better stuff out there on a clothing rack with a sign that said "$1 each or five for $4!"  While clothes still weren't the biggest sellers, I think it did help to sell a few more pieces than had I priced them at $5 each.

Being Prepared:  We had advertized for 8am-1pm and we'd heard of early bird shoppers so we started setting our goods up at 6:30am.  We had our first customer at 7:15am.  I didn't realize they would be that early!  As soon as that first customer came, we had not one single moment of no customers until 12:30pm!!!  We were absolutely run off our feet.  So be prepared, start setting up plenty early, and have price tags on most, if not all, of your items.  Having done this really cut down on all of that "Hey Darryl!  How much for the blender!?" while he's busy selling a lawn mower to someone else.  We had discussed and previously decided how much we'd like most items to go for. 

Here were are all set up for the day...



In the end we stayed open until about 2:30-3 because the people were still coming.  Since Saturday had been so successful and we still had so much left over, we decided to give it all a second go on Sunday.  And after we were all done on Sunday, we loaded all the left overs straight into our cars and sent them off to Value Village.  We didn't want a single item to come back inside with us!!

When all was said and done, we made just over $700!!!  Who knew garage sales could be so lucrative!?  We've decided to put that money towards a little weekend getaway for our 11 year anniversary this September.  We had noooo idea we'd have so much success getting rid of our stuff and are so happy we stopped putting it off and actually did it!

Have you ever held a garage sale?  Was it successful?  Have any tips to add?

Monday, 9 July 2012


Does anyone have any idea why my poor poor computer will not convert my pictures from Flickr from their html codes into actual pictures????  I know it's something with the computer because I had no trouble at all on my work computer.  But I'm not at work anymore which is why it's been silent around here.  What's a blog post with no pictures!? 

Anyways, I hope you're all doing well...and I hope to be able to resume posting again soon!

Any suggestions???