Tag Archives: summer

Airstream Inspiration

I feel guilty about not being “productive” this weekend. Do you ever feel that way? Learning to relax is definitely something I need to work on.

Tropical Storm Andrea put a damper on our Airstream progress. This past weekend, we had planned to install the floor, but it rained crazy-hard. And when it wasn’t raining, it was a humid, unbearable 95 degrees. Gotta love living in the south!

But instead of staring longingly out of the window at the airstream, I decided to make myself at least feel productive by looking for inspiration for the Airstream’s interior.

A few of my favorites are below.

For the source, just click on the picture!

Airstream Kitchen

This is my ultimate inspiration. I love the clean lines and the bright white in this airstream.

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I adore this desk! It folds down for more space.  Gorgeous and genius. It’s the Natalie Portman of desks.

babmi ii bed silvertrailerThe storage under the bed in this Bambi airstream is so clever. And I just want to climb in that bed!

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Although it isn’t an airstream, I really admire the woodwork that went into this bus. I also love the pattern mixing in the textiles. Custom woodwork and pattern mixing are two aspects I want to incorporate into our own design.

For more of my airstream inspiration, follow my board on Pinterest!

love,
melanie

How to Make Money at Flea Markets

flea marketOne of the best ways to unload a large amount of junk and make a few extra bucks is to sell your wares at a local flea market (or as some call it, a swap meet). In my experience, we’ve had much more success at a flea markets than at yard sales. Yard sales require the customers to drive to your house. Yard sales don’t have as many vendors, so they don’t attract as many customers. And people also seem to want you to offer you .10 cents for everything at a yard sale.

Over the past couple of years, George and I have sold a large chunk of our earthly wares at the Raleigh Flea Market. During this time, we’ve also acquired an array of tips and tricks to the flea market game. Here’s what we’ve learned:

1. If your flea market is outside, check the weather report! People will not shop if it is raining, super cold or very windy. It is also a total bummer to sit outside in harsh elements all morning. Bad weather can also ruin your stuff. For example, if you sell books, even a little bit of rain will completely ruin your stuff.  Bring tarps or a large tent even if the weather report is in your favor.

2. If your flea market takes reservations, call early in the week to book a good spot. Scope out the best spots the week before and ask for those specific spots. Look for spots near a bathroom or an entrance. These areas are higher traffic, therefore, your items are more likely to be seen.

3. Know your competition. Visit the flea market a couple of times before selling to scope out the competition. What is everyone else selling? Are their prices high or low? What can you offer that other booths may not?

4. Know your market. In the beginning, it is hard to figure out what sells, but by bringing a variety of items, you’ll be able to quickly narrow down your scope. For example, we’ve found out that vintage clothing does not sell at our flea market, but I’ve been to huge flea markets, such as the Rose Bowl, where vintage clothing sells like hotcakes.

5. You’ll want to narrow down your scope a bit, so you don’t have to haul your entire house to the flea market, but keep things diverse. We’ve had weekends where only our furniture had sold and we’ve had weekends where only small knick-nacks sold.

6. Create an appealing booth. Put your best items at the front of the booth to draw in customers. Spread items out and display them in a shop-like way. Go to the mall to get inspiration! No one likes to get on the ground to sort through junk. Put your items on tables, display clothing on racks and play music that reflects your style. Check out the picture below of our last set-up. We put our most eye-catching items towards the front of the booth. The painting of the pig drew in so many customers!

flea market set up

7. Price your items slightly higher than you the amount you would take. Some people at the flea market like to negotiate. Some don’t. If you see someone is hovering over an item or you can tell they may be a bit shy, let them know your low price.

8. With that being said, don’t take a price that is less than you feel comfortable with. People will always try to get something for nothing. Someone else will come along and you’ll sell that item eventually. Don’t worry too much.

9. Don’t take it personally when someone balks about the price. You know what the item is worth to you. Some people don’t see the value in it and never will. Ignore those people. When we bring George’s art out to the flea market people balk about the price and try to offer us less. The pieces are original and often take hours, if not days, to complete. We price it fairly. The end.

10. Have fun, talk to people, put on sunblock, dress in layers, bring a chair, lots of snacks and relax! Selling your old junk is easy money.

Have you ever sold at a flea market? Got any tips? Leave ‘em in the comments!

love,
melanie

Maple and Rum Horchatas

horchata1I like my milk heavy on the coffee. Is that how that saying goes? No? What I’m trying to say is a big glass of plain, dairy milk makes me cringe.

The first time I encountered horchatas was when I lived in L.A. I was scared to try them because I thought they were a big ol’ glass of watery milk. But we ordered one anyway and boy was I was wrong! Horchatas are refreshing, delicious and made from rice water and almond milk– which I actually enjoy. I also enjoy a little refreshing nip of rum–if you know what I’m saying.

Here’s my recipe for the perfect adult horchata.

Ingredients

  • 1  cup of uncooked long grain rice
  • 5 cups of water
  • 3/4 cup of unsweetened almond milk
  • 1/2 tablespoon of vanilla extract
  • 1 tablespoon of ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 cup of maple syrup
  • 4 shots of your favorite rum (We used Sailor Jerry’s for the nutmeg and cinnamon flavors.)

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Pour the rice and water into a  blender.  Blend the rice until it breaks up, but isn’t total mush– about 1 minute. Let rice and water stand at room temperature overnight.

The next day, strain the rice water into a pitcher. Discard the leftover rice. Whisk the almond milk, vanilla, cinnamon, maple syrup and rum into the rice water. Serve over ice.

So much more refreshing and relaxing than a glass of milk!

What is your favorite summer drink?

love,
melanie

Tart, Ginger Cranapple Juice

homemade cranapple juiceIt seems like everyone is juicing lately. I have to admit, I’ve been on a couple of juice cleanses and I absolutely hated it. Let’s be real, ya’ll. No green juice is ever better than a real bacon and egg breakfast. And to be honest, I feel better eating high protein, low carb instead of the other way around.

But George loves apple juice. He is such a little kid sometimes. And I do worry about the boy’s sugar intake. I can be a real mom sometimes. So, I was looking for  a way to make a healthier, lower sugar, apple juice. Here’s what I came up with:

Ingredients

  • 2 Granny Smith apples
  • 1/2 inch of fresh ginger
  • 1/2 cup of cranberry juice (no sugar added)

I don’t have a juicer, so I made this one in my blender. It works well, but it would be smoother if you choose to make it in a juicer.

Peel, core and cut the apples into bite-size chunks. Peel and cut up the ginger. Add the cranberry juice to the blender first, then add the apples and the ginger. Blend until smooth and pour over ice. Enjoy!

Cranapple ginger juice

Tart and gingery! Have you ever tried a juice cleanse? Do you think it lives up to the hype?

love,
melanie

DIY Ombre Sunglasses

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It seems like the ombre trend will never die, huh? Oh well. I love it and I’m not afraid to omber-ize everything– including my sunglasses.

Here’s the how-to:

sunglasses1Supplies:

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Step 1 (Optional): (Enlist your husband) to drill small holes into the ends of your sunglasses. This will allow the ombre effect to be carried to the ends of the sunglasses. If you skip this step, you will just have to end the thread earlier on the sunglasses and leave the behind-the-ear-part empty. (Fancy terminology, huh?)

sunglasses3Step 2: Place a piece of tape sticky-side up onto the back of the glasses. This makes the process much easier because the thread won’t slide around.

sunglasses4Step 3: Tie a knot on the end of the of glasses closest to the eye.

sunglasses5Step 5: Begin neatly wrapping the thread around the sunglasses. This is where you can be creative with the process and switch up your colors.

Step 6: End the thread by neatly wrapping through the hole drilled in the end of the sunglasses. Tie a knot and dot the ends with fabric glue for extra strength.

Step 7: Repeat on the other side!

sunglasses6Annnnnd done! We’re ready to hit the beach!

love,
melanie

 

 

 

Saffron Lemonade

lemonade3I watch the Cooking Channel while running on the treadmill at the gym. I should be embarrassed, but I’m not. No shame in my game.

The other night My Grandmother’s Ravioli was on and Mo Rocca was cooking with two adorable, little Indian women. I absolutely love the flavors of Indian cooking, so I was enthralled. Before the ladies began cooking, they served Mo saffron lemonade. My head almost exploded. I quickly typed it onto the notes on my phone and I haven’t been able to stop thinking about it.

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I googled their recipe, but I modified it a bit. I try to watch my sugar intake.

Saffron Lemonade: Makes 16 oz.
5-6 lemons
1/4 cup of sugar
2 pinches of saffron
1 cup of cold water
A handful of ice

Squeeze the lemons, add the sugar, water and saffron, then add a handful of ice and shake. The longer you let the saffron steep in the lemonade, the stronger the flavor will be. I let mine steep about an hour and it turned a gorgeous orange color.

lemonade

The flavor kind of reminded me of kombucha, but less tart. Saffron lemonade is the perfect spring drink!

love,
melanie

 

DIY Dolce and Gabbana Floral Sunnies

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Do you ever see something you want and you just can’t get it out of your head? That is how I felt about these sunglasses. It was irrational, but I after seeing them on Pinterest could not stop! I was a mad (and broke) woman desperate for a pair of Dolce and Gabana sunglasses. Knowing that my bank account & I are not friends, I decided to break out my trusty glue gun and get to craftin’!

I’m super pleased about how this DIY turned out. It was super easy & so, so cheap!

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Step 1: Break out your supplies. You will need a pair of sunglasses (I found mine at the Dollar Store), a hot glue gun, rosettes, scissors and spray paint (optional).

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Step 2: (optional) I loved the look of the black flowers so I spray painted them. You could leave the flowers as is for a more colorful look. You’ll notice I enlisted the help of George for this one. He is way better at spray painting than I am. He also had the brilliant idea to tape the flowers to a piece of cardboard, so they didn’t roll around during the spraying process.

Step 3: Let the rosettes dry & heat up your glue gun. I also cut some of the “leaves” off the rosettes to place them closer together, but that is an optional step.

Step 4: Working your way inward, place a small dot of glue on the sunglasses. Put rosette into the glue and hold for 10 seconds or until cool.

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Step 5: (optional) Hit the beach in your fabulous new sunnies! You’re a doll!

love,
melanie