Creating a Home on a Budget

Unpacking and trying to make a house a home can be tough… especially when downsizing. California rent is a real thing. However, we’ve been trying to make the most of it by getting creative with smaller spaces and looking for ways to save money, but still have a beautiful home! Here are some tips that we’ve been using:

  • Get rid of clutter. We’ve taken about 7-8 giant bags of stuff to Goodwill. I’ve always been a clinger- especially with clothes because you never know when that thick, ugly sweater will come back in style. But, what I do now is when I do a deep cleanse, I keep whatever I am going to get rid of in a plastic bag and then keep that “Goodwill Bag” for 1-2 months. Then if I discover I want something, I can go grab it. 9 times out of 10, I don’t miss anything in that bag. I go through it once more before giving it to Goodwill or letting my sister have dibs. It feels amazing to have a cleaner closet and to give good clothes/things away that someone else can appreciate.
  • Be smart about space. Right now, we don’t have a lot of closet space, much to my dismay. But, we do have a bigger laundry room than I’ve previously had. We just got a wire rack on Amazon for $50 that is now our storage and pantry. Apparently built-in pantries in California are not a thing? We’re planning to get a bookshelf for the living room. So we can make the most of our space and have more places to store things.
  • OfferUp. It’s a free app, like Craigslist, but easier to use IMO. Facebook Marketplace is another great resource. We found 4 barstools for our new place for a steal of a deal. Granted, we’ve had to work to get them clean because they were well-used, but I actually really love going on the app and checking out what people around me are selling!
  • Invest. It’s so easy when you’re first starting out to say, “Oh, we don’t need a kitchen table now.” Um… I’m here to tell you that it’s okay to invest in some items you need. That doesn’t mean you head over to West Elm and pick out your favorite piece. I mean, if you have that kind of money be my guest. My point is, it’s good to invest in a few things that you need. When I first moved to Dallas, I didn’t get a bed frame because I was trying to save money and “it wasn’t essential.” I slept on the floor for YEARS. I should have just gotten a cheap bed frame from Ikea or Craigslist. A friend just told me that her husband tried to save money by not getting a shower curtain. He took one shower and when he realized there was a small lake on the floor, he immediately went and bought one. HAHA. I just got an area rug (pictured in the photos) because we now have hardwoods instead of carpet. I am proud of myself because it’s not only cute, but now our couches won’t slide around when you sit down. 🙂
  • Personalize. You can still make a house your own on a budget. Yummy smelling candles make it feel cozy, dollar-section Target decorations for holidays make it festive, and photos of family make it warm.

There are a million ways to make a house a home on a budget, and this little list is just scraping the surface, but I hope it helps a few of you that are in the same boat as me! If you have any ways you’ve done this comment below!

Also, I love overall jumpers! Here are some similar ones to the one I have down below.

XO,

Alyse

Cactus Wall ?


Okay how adorable is this wall?! I saw this and knew I needed to go find it. ? Linnea & I realized that we had hit our 3 year Friendaversary on Facebook this week, so we set off to find the wall to celebrate.

This fun mural is located a few blocks away from Emporium Pies in the Bishop Arts district of Dallas. In fact, if you are facing Emporium Pies & you look to your right, you can see it. It’s so fun & pretty. Not pictured in this post- the scary armadillo and bunny that were part of the mural. ?

We took fun pictures and then headed to Emporium Pies to obviously eat pie for breakfast. It was a great date.

Oh and I love how comfortable, lightweight, and  cute this chambray midi is! Perfect for a Texas  summer. I’m putting links down below in case you want to be as comfortable as me. They’re on sale, too. For under $20. ? Ugh. I think I may need to get the other one now, too…

XOXO,

Alyse

Let Us Be Adventurers.

At some point in our lives, we will each be faced with a choice…we can take a chance or we can play it safe.

It’s easier to play it safe. In fact, I would say more times than not, I have chosen to play it safe in order to minimize risk, uncertainty, & failure. But does playing it safe always make us more happy? Our Founding Fathers once penned the phrase “life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness”- a phrase that we each hold sacred in our hearts. It’s interesting to note that they used the words “pursuit of happiness” instead of “happiness.”

I was driving home the other day & thinking about how happy I felt. I was trying to put my finger on why I felt so happy, when I realized that lately in my life, I have been consciously pursuing happiness. I have been working to be happy, and that act alone has made me happy. Happiness isn’t something we are handed, and it isn’t a prize to be won. Happiness is a state of being that takes constant work and effort. Here is a little secret that has brought me happiness lately:

I have been taking risks.

Now this doesn’t mean I’ve hopped on a flight to Vegas & gambled all my money away, but I’ve taken good risks on things like goals or things that I want in my heart. I have especially loved taking risks on things that I have never allowed myself to do for one reason or another. Oh man, it is scary! However, even if I fail, my heart feels good because I was pursuing happiness. Change can be scary. Taking a leap of faith into the dark can be scary. Making yourself vulnerable can be scary. Recognizing and breaking down your own barriers can be difficult and scary. But when you are following your heart and what God wants you to do, you will be unstoppable.

So start training for that marathon. Ask that boy on a date! Apply for that job that you really want. Have that conversation that you have been needing to have- no matter how uncomfortable it may be. Stand up for your morals. Start your own business. Move across the country. Move home! Buy tickets for that vacation you’ve been planning for years. Try out for that dream team! Get a dog. Start your family! Buy a house. Commit. I guarantee that you will be happier if you try and fail, then if you dream of what-ifs.

Yes, when you fail the initial sting hurts. But you will have a peace in your heart knowing that you were working towards your dream. Sometimes we will start pursuing something good and realize that there is actually something better for us and change directions. You will not find that better thing though if you aren’t willing to take risks. High risk, high reward, people.

Failure, at times, is inevitable, so make doors close on you vs. standing still in a hall with hundreds of doors you haven’t tried. Create the life you’ve always wanted. Go forth with God.

When the moment comes, and everything is on the line- choose in.

Let us be adventurers.

Alyse

PS. Here are similar dresses. Some are on sale, too! xoxo

Scroll right or left to see all!