I’ve seen some pretty creative uses for a George Foreman grill, mostly while I lived in the dorms. Cooking for yourself in a dorm is possible, and actually it is a great way to cut down on meal plan costs during that first year of school. Freshman dorms don’t typically come with kitchens. All you are going to have in your room is a sink (if you’re lucky) and some electrical outlets. But add a few small appliances to the mix and you can cook many meals from your home away from home! Before moving in, contact your roommates and see if anyone can bring any of the following items with them.
Here are some ideas to get you started: Read more
Dorm room cooking doesn't have to mean peanut butter sandwiches and ramen soup for dinner every night. Having just the right kitchen essentials can make it easy to whip up a meal just like mom makes but in the comfort of your own dorm room kitchen.
No kitchen is complete without a nonstick skillet on hand. Perfect for making a stack of pancakes on the weekend or scrambled eggs before running off to class, a non-stick pan makes it easier to keep food from getting burned and, obviously, stuck, making it a must have dorm accessory. The Stainless 12" Fry Pan – Nonstick combines the best of both worlds, with a sturdy stainless steel base and durable non-stick coating. Read more
A small dorm room can be a difficult space to add your own personal style to. Since dorm rooms usually come outfitted with beds and desks it takes the right dorm accessories to bring a one of a kind look to the cookie cutter dorm room. With so little space it's important to add functional items, like desk lamps and bed linens, but that doesn't mean they have to be boring! Use these functional pieces as a way to add a fun color or texture to the room.
If you're looking to inject a little fun and color, try the vintage style of the Retrobin. With a foot peddle design this trash can is perfect for keeping trash contained and also has a sleek bullet shape that gives it some style. Read more
It might be the start of the semester, but it won't be long before midterms and late nights studying are here. Having a comfortable and functional workspace is key for cutting down on stress. The right lighting is necessary for keeping tired eyes from getting strained. Whether you have a dorm room with lots of space for a large desk or a compact work area, a clip on desk lamp is a convenient way to add adjustable lighting wherever you decide to study. Read more
“I never drink coffee at lunch. I find it keeps me awake for the afternoon” – Ronald Reagan
Perhaps as the president of the United States, Ronald Reagan was able to find time to take a nice long afternoon nap, but as a returning college student, you know sleeping through Philosophy 322 is just not going to get the job done (or the degree earned!). For many students that are preparing to head back to college for the semester, a piping hot cup of Joe can be the perfect antidote to a monotonous Geology instructor with a penchant for using the scientific name of every mineral. Read more
One of the easiest ways to give any room, inside or out, a makeover is to simply switch up the lighting. Lighting is one of the most important, and often one of the most overlooked, parts of a room’s decorative theme. Thankfully, it is also easy to tackle yourself, and very affordable.
Here are some easy, quick ways to freshen up the lighting around your home without the help of a contractor. Add one of these projects to your DIY short list for the summer! Read more
For me, nothing says summer like gardening. In the same way that fall would not be the same without raking leaves, summer would not be the same without watering, weeding, deadheading and fertilizing. Not surprisingly, container gardening has surged to new levels in recent years, as many people rediscover the joy of gardening. Gardening in pots and larger containers, like this large raised garden, has many advantages over ground level gardening. One of them is water conservation. Read more
Ah, there is nothing like summertime! It is my favorite time of the year – the weather is exceptional and the days are long and fulfilling. I love spending my free time outdoors during the summer when the weather is nice. In fact, one of my favorite activities is just sitting out in the sun, enjoying the warmth while I relax reading a book or listening to some music. Read more
My cousin is an office manager for a team of salt-minors just outside of Barstow, CA. If you know anything about that part of Southern California, it is one of the hottest, unforgiving climates in the country. For a point of reference, it is about 50 miles from Death Valley.
Summers in Barstow can get up into the 100’s, meaning it is very important for the team of minors to stay hydrated at all times, especially because they are performing hard manual labor. Just a week ago, they had a scare when one of the guys passed out from heat stroke. He ended up being ok, but my cousin wanted to be sure that nothing like this ever happened again. Read more
In keeping with our graduation gift theme (cuz it's not too late!), here are some great gift ideas for guys! When a young adult graduates from college, you want to look for a gift that is truly special and, most importantly, useful. Theoretically, your student will be setting up a new life for himself, which may include moving out on his own.
Here is a list of fun graduation gift ideas for that special guy in your life: Read more
Sometimes it seems to me that much of the good stuff has already been invented. I’m not talking technology here, I’m thinking more along the lines of stuff for the home. But many of us prefer a more modern look to our home decor style, so how can we incorporate these old fashioned items into our contemporary decor scheme? If you are a weekend DIY-er, you can certainly update the look of a piece of furniture simply by changing up the color. If you are me, you simply look for already -made fashionable upgrades to some old time favorite home accessories. Read more
If you’ve got the outdoor space, you should definitely consider adding an outdoor bench to your patio furniture collection. Why? Because no other piece of furniture beckons you to come and sit, relax and enjoy a bit of nature like a garden bench does. Maybe it’s because we grew up sitting on benches at parks or at Grandma’s house, I don’t know for sure. All I know is that a garden bench adds charm and functional seating to any outdoor space.
My pick of this season is the Garden Leaves Park Bench, which features a beautiful cast iron leaf design on its back. Why? Read on… Read more
I think many professional organizers will agree with me that Bed Risers are a wonderful tool for getting the house organized, starting with the bedroom. Whenever a client has run out of room in her closet and is desperate for more storage space, the first place I look is under the bed. And if there isn’t any space down there, she is always relieved to hear that we can create that space in an instant.
Bed risers come in all shapes and sizes, here are some of my favorite picks and tips on using them: Read more
When searching for the right gift for your graduate, it’s important to keep in mind that this generation of students is very tuned into the needs of the environment. Thankfully, there are eco-friendly products available for nearly every area of the home, so you will have no problem finding what you, or your student, needs.
Environmentally friendly homewares usually fall into one of the following categories: Chemical free (cleaners), organic (linens), energy efficient (appliances), or renewable resources (everything else). Choosing a product from one of these categories shows that you care about your grad’s interests and commitment toward a better world. Read more
Finding your style as you enter the real world can be exciting for some while overwhelming for others. This is true of both your clothing style, and of your home decor style.
The time after the academic years is one of major growth, and, naturally, a time of nesting. If you are confused about what type of style you would like to incorporate into your home, start by simply searching for different styles on the internet, specifically zeroing in on image results to get a feel for what is out there and what you like. Some terms to get you started are: “Modern Décor”, “Contemporary”, “Transitional”, “Tuscan”, “Classic”, “Country” and so on. Read more
Have you ever noticed that at back to school time, we are all over our kids; buying them anything they could possibly need in hopes that they will have a successful school year, but when graduation time comes, we supply them with no more than a party and a monogrammed pen? What do graduates really need to start down the path toward adulthood? Thinking outside of the box of the usual graduation gifts, it’s obvious that they need support for the next phase of their life. Read more
This week’s featured product combines two classic styles of office organizers into one piece, bulletin boards and magnetic message boards! The magnetic bulletin boards by Umbra can be used with magnets and also with push pins, thanks to a hidden soft backing. This is a great organizer for the home, office, dorm room, school and more! I think this organizer is especially helpful for students, giving them two ways to hang their school work and personal notes. They may want to use magnets to hold their homework, so that they don’t have to poke holes in it, and leave the thumb tacks for notes and reminders. The modern silver finished metal design makes a nice design focal point on any wall, great for the home office too! Read more
To me, there are fewer things in life more joyful than owning a dog. They provide constant companionship and never ending loyalty. My dog has taught me responsibility, one of which is taking her out when she needs to go. Unfortunately for me, I live in an apartment building with that does not have a backyard for her to go, so I am forced to take my dog out to the nearest public park when she needs to go. Read more
The bedroom should be a calming space where you can relax and unwind, not just a place for sleeping. The ideal bedroom strikes a balance between decorative touches that make it a space that reflects your personal style and practical key elements that ensure comfortable sleeping. By taking specific details into consideration you can turn our bedroom into a soothing space you can't wait to spend time in. Read more
I really love being able to live in the city; there is just so many activities to do and things to see, and it is all available to you right at your fingertips. One of my very favorite perks of city living is that it is totally practical to walk to many of my everyday chores, things such as grocery shopping. It is so nice to be able to walk out your front door and be at the supermarket in just ten minutes, never having to worry about battling for parking or fighting off rush-hour traffic. Plus, you get a little built-in exercise every day! Read more
Keeping your garage in working order doesn't have to be a chore, it can be just as organized and tidy as any other room in your home.
No garage can go without some much needed storage to keep everything from gardening supplies to sporting equipment organized and quick to find. Though the garage seems to be a difficult space to keep clean, it only takes a few steps to ensure that any mess is manageable. Read more
Outdoor Flooring: A Quick and Easy DIY Project for Anyone!
With Spring rapidly approaching, it’s time to start planning outdoor DIY projects , and I’ve come across one that is easy to do and easy on the budget. When we think of outdoor decorating, we often forget that what goes under our feet can make a great contribution to our outdoor decor.
One of the easiest ways to update the look of your patio, porch or deck is to add some kind of floor feature, whether it is an outdoor area rug, or floor tiles like the Le Click Interlocking Teak Floor Tiles! Read more
Organizing itself is definitely in style, but what about the tools you use to organize – are they pulling their weight in terms of aesthetics? Nowadays, you can find almost any type of organizer that has been updated to look as good as it works. You don’t have to keep everything in unsightly plastic boxes if you don’t want to. Believe me, plastic box storage has its place, but that place is in a closet or in the garage. Not in plain view of everyone that walks through your house! There is little room for excuse anymore. Stylish organizers are available for every room of the home! Read more
My favorite types of window treatments are nature-inspired. That’s because you may need privacy, but you might not want to shut yourself off from the natural outdoor views. A natural window covering is perfect for this situation, a sort of middleman between you and your garden. The Kona Roman Bamboo Shades are a great choice for this purpose. Roman shades are perfect for adding a natural touch and sufficient light blockage and privacy to any room. The Kona shades are made of bamboo which is both eco-friendly and high quality for longevity. Read more
Watching the classic holiday film Home Alone last week reminded me that it’s that time of year again to take stock of our home security measures. But some people, myself included, don’t really even know where to start when it comes home security and safety.
Here is a list of ideas to get you started. Of course you’re not going to get it all done in one weekend, it might be something you pick away at during the course of the year. Read more
The sun is not just the star at the center of our solar system. When you think about it, its importance is really beyond our comprehension. Many early civilizations (and even people in our current one) such as the Aztecs and Incas worshiped the sun. Generally today, the sun represents happiness and hope. To some, it is not even worth getting out of bed if it isn’t a sunny day. And when you think about what the sun manages to accomplish in its day, it’s pretty incredible.
Why on earth am I romanticizing about the sun on a blog dedicated to home and personal organizing, you ask? Read more
When it comes to cold and flu season cleaning your hands and your home is key. Stop infection from spreading by making sure you always have antibiotic soap on hand. Anything that can get touched by germ covered hands like door handles or electronics also needs to be disinfected. There are lots of cleaning products especially designed to keep your home healthy.
The most basic step is to keep a soap dispenser on hand at the kitchen sink as well as in the bathroom. The forma 2 steel and plastic soap dispenser has a large capacity and rust proof base ideal for using throughout the home. Read more
The Agadir Single Bench by Zuo Modern is the ultimate in multi purpose furniture! If you’ve been looking to update your outdoor decor to something more modern, this stool has you covered. With UV treated synthetic fibers and an aluminum frame, this stool is designed to stand up to outdoor conditions, but also works well inside at the bar or against the kitchen counter.
The other thing I like about this patio stool is the synthetic woven design. It makes me think of the kind of furniture you would see at a tropical resort, which is a style that I can certainly get behind in my own home! Read more
This 15 piece toiletry travel containers set takes the guesswork out of travel with toiletries! I have been stopped more than once at security for having either too much or the wrong size bottles.
If you are like me, you will do anything to avoid checking bags, so you will need to follow the TSA regulations for carrying liquids on a plane. I can never remember what exactly those rules are, but I’ve found a great travel bottle set that does the math for me. Read more
Nothing is worse than the feeling that comes with breaking a brand-new plate or glass in your sink. This feeling of disappointment and despair is especially compounded when your sink is scratched or damaged as well! One solution to this issue that I often see is adding a kitchen sink mat to the sink. Read more