Friday, November 21, 2014

Five on Friday

Hello Friday!  I hope you all have had a wonderful week and are as happy to see the weekend approaching as I am. This weekend will be filled with friends, fun and a few house projects. In just a few we're off on our weekly Target trip, which is always the highlight of my Friday. Target, a birthday starbucks treat and an afternoon of baking…couldn't think of a better way to spend my day. Happy weekend friends!  

As usual, linking up with for DarciAprilChristina, and Natasha for Five on Friday! 

Tomorrow is my 31st birthday. I'm looking forward to celebrating with my girlfriends in the morning and a date night with hubs for the first time since Luke has been born tomorrow night. This year has definitely been a whirlwind. I started my 30th year in Texas on one of the coldest days of the year. Everything that followed from that day has been such a blessing. A surprise pregnancy, a move back home to FL, a healthy baby boy and a new home. God is so good and I cannot wait to see what He has in store this year. 

Hubs gave me one of my birthday presents last weekend. Say hello to my new best friend and my favorite nook place in the house. He gave me a Keurig Rivo Cappuccino Brewing System. We also bought Starbucks syrups, which allows me to have a latte that is just as good as Starbucks each morning for a fraction of the price. Probably one of the best gifts ever! 

This happened last night. I put out a lot of my decorations last weekend. Being in the new house for Christmas this year made me so excited to decorate. I just couldn't wait any longer. I need to get a new tree skirt and tree topper. Some things went missing in the move and our topper is one of them. I think I may wait to decorate the tree until after Thanksgiving. I'm working on an advent calendar for hubs and I, decorating the tree is one of the first things on it.  

Have you decorated yet?  

Thanksgiving is less than a week away. I think I'm going to spend some time today using up the multiple cans of pumpkin I have in the pantry. I don't do much pumpkin baking past Thanksgiving, all things gingerbread and peppermint usually take over. I found these adorable printables at Lil Luna that would be perfect to attach to some fresh baked cookies or bread. 


My giveaway for a Halo SleepSack is ending this weekend. Check out the post here for details on how to enter! 

Today is also the last day to share to win an appliqu├ęd Christmas towel for you and a friend. Follow me on IG @LeahEverydayLove for more details. 

Incase You Missed It…

Thursday, November 20, 2014

8 Easy Ways to Cut Your Energy Bill

Thank you PG&E for sponsoring this post. Follow PG&E on social for more useful energy efficiency tips to save money!
A few days before Luke was born, we moved into a new house. There are so many expenses when it comes to buying a new home. Everything can add up really fast.  One of the main concerns hubs and I had was the electric bill. This house is bigger than what we had before, so we immediately started researching ways to make our house more energy efficient and in turn save money on our energy bill. It's been about two months and our bill has been drastically less than our last two houses. Here is what we did in our house to save money.

1. Keeping Blinds Closed 

This was a big one for us. The heat from the sun shining through makes our house much warmer and therefore the air is on longer. Closing the blinds makes a big difference. The past few cold days we've had, I've kept them open to help heat the home a bit as well. 

2. Program Your Thermostat 

If you're at work all day or when you're sleeping at night, you can get away with turning the air up (or heat down) a bit. If you program your thermostat, you won' t have to mess with it  often. Ours is set for each day of the week and times of the day. We also leave our upstairs thermostat off as much as possible. 

3. Use Convection Ovens

They take less time to heat up and cool down. They're perfect for casseroles and small dinners. 

4. Change Air Filters 

I set a reminder on my phone to change the air filters monthly. Replacing them consistently will help your air conditioner run better and last longer. 

5. Unplug Appliances 

If they aren't in use, unplug them. 

6. Use Cold Water For Laundry 

and really anything else you can use it for. Do you laundry that needs hot water in bulk and the smaller loads using cold water. 

 7. Take Quick Showers 

The less you use hot water, the more you save! 

8. Look at your BILL!  

A lot of energy companies will come out to your house to do an assessment if you think your bill is too high. Pay attention to it every month. Also, call and ask them what discounts they have. Ask them how you can save on your bill. 

While doing my research on how to save money, I came across Pacific Gas and Electric (PG&E). I found lots of information about how to become more energy efficient. On their site, I read that being energy efficient saves you money, time and improves your quality of life. It also reduces outages, puts less strain on natural resources and reduces emissions that can harm the environment. 

If you head on over to the PG&E site, you can find lots of tools to help you save energy and money. Whether you're planning a new home improvement project, looking for everyday saving tips, shopping for new appliances, need energy saving ideas or are looking for information on plug-in electric vehicles. You can find this and much more on their website
PG&E is hosting a photo challenge contest, you will definitely want to enter! All you have to do is follow PG&E on Instagram to be entered to win one of seven $100 Home Depot Gift Cards!  #PGEhome #PhotoChallenge 

You can also follow PG&E on Twitter and YouTube.
How do you save on your energy bill? 
I was selected for this opportunity as a member of Clever Girls and the content and opinions expressed here are all my own.

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

Thanksgiving Menu + Tried & True Recipes

Thanksgiving is just over a week away. Even though I already have some Christmas decor up in our house, Thanksgiving is still one of my favorite holidays. Food, family, football, more food, card games and fun…so many things I love all together on one day. 

This year it's also my dad's birthday, even more reason to celebrate. I usually do all the meal planning for Thanksgiving. Ya'll know I love trying new recipes and cooking. Planning the menu is something I look forward to each year. Over the years I've found some fabulous recipes that have stuck around, the ones the boys approve of. They're always the picky ones! Today, I'm sharing some of the recipes that have become a favorite at our table. 

-sweet potatoes-

Cornflake, Pecan and Marshmallow Sweet Potato Casserole 


Since I love trying new recipes, I've decided to add a few new ones to our tried and true recipes above. Here is what I'm adding to our menu for Thanksgiving next week: 


Pioneer Woman's Pecan Pie 

Chocolate Creme Pie



Of course, we will make the classic green bean casserole and dinner rolls. 
Anything missing off of our menu? 

What's on your Thanksgiving menu? 

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

All I Want for Christmas

When thinking about what I wanted for Christmas, I had a tough time. Like I said with my birthday list, there isn't really anything we need. Unless you can count a fence, custom closet and other random things on the home front. Goodness, our house list keeps growing and growing! Anywhoo, I was able to come up with a few things that would be nice to have under the tree this year. 

 -one- Sephora Brush Set It's been many years since I have bought new brushes.  Half of mine also went missing after our move. I think I only have a blush brush and one eyeshadow brush left. Even though I rarely wear makeup anymore, I could definitely use new brushes. 

-two- Checkered Infinity Scarf I love the colors of this scarf. It would match a lot of my winter staples and it's under $30! 

-three- Jingle Juice Mug from Ashley Brooke Designs. Hubs bought me a Keurig Rivo espresso machine for my birthday along with Starbucks syrups. Let me tell you, if you're a latte person go and get one now!  I love having Starbucks quality lattes at home. No having to load two kids in the car. No having to pay $9 a pop (since the mini gets something when we go.) And honestly, they are good. Really really good drinks! Anyhow, this mug would be perfect to hold my at home lattes! 

-four- Louis Vuitton Speedy A girl can dream right?  I originally said I would buy myself one once I replace the $$ in savings from my new embroidery machine and made back enough to cover the cost of the purse with my business. I made back the cost of the machine back in April. At that time I was newly pregnant and we started talking about moving and getting our forever home when we did. I couldn't justify spending the money on a purse with all the changes coming. Now that Luke is here, were back in Florida and in our new house…I think I'll treat myself to this baby for Christmas. 

-five- Gift cards! photo credit You can't go wrong with gift cards. My favorites include Nordstrom, Target, HomeGoods and of course Starbucks. Just because I can make them at home doesn't mean I still won't enjoy one while browsing Target or getting a pedicure! 

-six- Button Cardigan  This cardigan looks so comfortable and would hide the post baby areas I'm not in love with right now. There are tons of color options and best of all it's on sale right now!  Also, there are over 2,000 reviews! 

-seven- Ugg Slippers  I love these in red and since I can fit into a kids size, they aren't too expensive. I Since our entire downstairs is tile, I end up wearing my slippers all day long. These would be perfect for winter. 

-eight- Kate Spade Cosmetic Bag  I need a small bag I can throw in my diaper bag. I love all things Kate Spade. This would match my phone case perfectly! 

Just as I did last year, I'm linking up with April, EliseKatieZelle for My Favorite Things Link Up.